Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cooking with HIPPY

This summer, I enrolled Helen in her first non church-related organized event, and this fall she began the HIPPY program in Atmore. And if you wonder what in blue blazes HIPPY is, skip to my link.

Helen was standoffish at first, and dreaded the initial testing. Gradually she warmed up to our home educator, Mrs. Teresa, and now she looks forward to doing a little fun activity with me each day, even though we don't get to it every day.

Most of the lessons are literature-based, and follow the theme of a children's book that we get a copy of, but last week we had a cooking lesson. We took two completely different substances and combined them to make something different. In our kitchen, it was pudding mix and milk. Complicated, I know, but Helen loved it. She even chose the pudding flavor in the grocery store. I opened the box of lemon pudding, poured the milk, and she whisked for a long time while I yakked on the phone. I totally missed the part where we were supposed to taste and feel the separate ingredients. Oops. Then we divided the pudding into espresso cups, and Helen put three snowman marshmallows on each cup. She counted the cups, counted the snowmen in each cup, and counted the total amount of snowmen. It was fascinating for her, and fun for me to see her learn.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Our day began with junk food cereal and Tom and Jerry cartoons, both Saturday morning traditions around here. For the record, Marshmallow Pebbles cereal is a little too junky for my taste. I felt queasy for a long time after my bowl full.
When Jack woke up, his first words were about needing his "scoon." I peeled back the covers in his crib and found my slotted serving spoon, which apparently was his choice sleep aid last night.

I had a hard time leaving last night's memories behind. The moment the hospital came into view, dizzying emotions slammed into me. The parking lot where Jason and I had walked to get my contractions going strong was torn up, making way for new construction. A small blessing.

We visited the labor and delivery wing and dropped off a beautiful white poinsettia for the desk. They hadn't forgotten us.

The grief counselor that had worked with us was finishing her shift. I handed her a blanket I sewed after Quinn was born, along with Quinn's birth announcement, to be given to the next mama that needs it.
And we held Bryce. And it was hard, but it was good.
We felt God's peace in those moments. We still trust that his peace is always near, even when we choose to ignore it and give in to despair.

Friday, December 10, 2010


Thank goodness for my large supply of felt and embroidery floss, two of my current favorite sewing supplies. They come in handy when my children get snippy with scissors.

Jack cut a hole in the sleeve of his dump truck shirt. It took me a little bit to think up the solution, but I thought the road sign was an appropriate warning for his sometimes difficult-to-maneuver self.
Helen, age four and fabulous, must have wanted designer gauchos instead of the off-the-rack pair that Aunt Jan found for her. The first time she wore them, much to my shame, she gouged a hole in them on purpose. She confessed, but only after I questioned her. Grrrrr...

And the kitty tore a hole in her beloved snowman jammies. Felt and floss to the rescue!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

December 9

What an emotionally tumultuous day. 3 months ago, we held our precious baby for 1 hour. We're left with a few pictures and memories. We don't have baby spit-up on our shirts. We don't have sleepless, newborn nights. The few rattles scattered on the floor are cat toys.

But we have a God that is good. Our future lies securely in his hands. Nothing comes as a surprise to him. Before Quinn was born, he knew her. He wrote the story of her life, and he wrote himself as the main character. Our arms are aching to hold her, but we know she is safe in heaven.

We swallow hard as we realize God has other stories for other people; it is no use to rant and rail. Our peace lies in accepting the path he chose for us, learning from his Word, and running into his presence.

And so we welcome with joy our sweet nephew, Bryce Andrew, born today, December 9, at the same hospital as Quinn. We plan to meet this new little person tomorrow afternoon. Congratulations, Brent and Janice!