And then she was gone.

Illness. My Grandma died yesterday. It was her time. She’s in the arms of Jesus. She wanted to go.

I’m pretty certain all these things are supposed to make me feel better. And they do. But.

For the past 3 or 4 years every visit was deemed the last. For her 90th birthday, almost 5 years ago, we had a party.  I would call this the beginning of the end. The cousins even joked that the next time we would all be together again would be her funeral. Gone are the days of talk – for this is real. She’s breathed her last.

I wasn’t ready. Emotionally. Oh believe me, I’m so glad she’s no longer in pain. She wanted to go. She was done. But I’ll never again hear her say, “Well hello Laura.”I’d tell her I loved her and she’d act all nervous and tell me she loved me too.

You see, my Grandma was blunt and tactless. The apple doesn’t fall very far does it? I still remember the day she looked over at me and told me I should cut off all my hair because hair is gross. I took a moment, reflected on my blonde locks, and told her to get over it. She smiled. I smiled. And we continued on our journey to the mail box. Getting the mail was one of those things we did together. And if her knees were bothering her, she’d wave at me as I walked by.

When people invest in your life, and then they are gone, you can’t help but look at the past. And smile. Smile for all the ice cream for breakfast. Endless chickens plucked. Summer days by the creek. Dirt cooking in a play house. Worlds largest fan of April Fools. My first pen-pal.

My Grandma was born in 1919. Black people didn’t marry white people. I was nervous about her meeting Q. I shouldn’t have.

I’m missing the funeral. My heart feels as if it is being squeezed by a giant, so tightly that my jaw aches, as if sucking a lemon lolly. She’s already gone. My last goodbye and hug was in fact, our last goodbye.

She reached her arms to Jesus.

They gave her 24 hours to live.

And then she was gone.

Categories: Uncategorized | 4 Comments

The Birds and the Bees

The Birds: I used to like humming birds. Beautiful, shiny little things. Flitting about, sugar loving, iridescent birds. I currently LOVE sitting on the deck. The girls love sitting on the deck. The neighbors love hummingbirds. They feed them. The hummingbirds have become attack birds. Dive bombing. Not afraid. Death birds. Like torpedo your head, fly through your hair killer birds. It is difficult to teach your children to be fearless while I’m screaming in fear of birds IN MY HAIR. I felt ridiculous and only wanted a tennis racket. And seriously? They are like the size of large butterflies. Gag.

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The Bees: I’ve never liked bees, yet at the same time I’ve also never been afraid. The worst that can happen is a sting right? Wrong. The worst thing that can happen is having a bee, with a vendetta against your family, trapped in your van, with your children strapped in their safety belts. I even ran away from the van and though I lured it away from the girls, it flew back in when I rushed the drivers seat! I ended up leaving the girls on the curb, speeding around the parking lot and then pulling them in the drivers side door while the bee dive bombed our windows! Seriously? Gooner, while strapped into her booster, nail falling off and bleeding, was stung. At one point we were all screaming and possibly crying. The bee continued to follow us throughout the parking lot and I needed those girls safely out of my lap and in their seats. Stupid bee. And then the rain came.  I have NEVER been so excited to stand in the rain and help my girls. It was tragic. DSCN0606

The Birds and the Bees: Apparently Gooner (5) learned about the actual birds and the bees during show and tell today. One of her friends brought a vet kit for show and tell…Complete with animals…that birth their babies. Thankfully she didn’t understand it all. According to Gooner: “Mommy’s poop our their babies. Some of them have them out of a different hole… where you probably pee from.” Awesome. I’m not sure if I dodged a bullet or not. I’m not certain why the teacher didn’t stop this informational show and tell. I liked the girl that brought her stuffed animal to share better.DSCN0610

Categories: Crazy Town, Education, Gooner, Parenting | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Bu-Bye Summer!!! – In Photos

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PS. I met a million neighbors at the pool. Like all of them. If you feel lonely – have children or get a dog. Boom. Conversation starter!

Categories: Family, Outdoors | Tags: , | 3 Comments

Moments Before…

…falling into a prickly pear cactus, Sooner was so happy. Our hike was amazing and lovely. The sun was shining, the girls were getting along and then Sooner lost her balance and fell right into a cactus.

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HUNDREDS of tiny barbs pierced her hand, pants, and her leg was a bloody mess. In order to fully pull out all the tined barbs we purchased a bikini wax kit. It was terrible! Q held her down while I waxed her! The wax pulled out all the tiny barbs. Using the tweezers caused them to break off. Poor thing. She only has three left in her leg. Through it all she was a trooper and kept on hiking. Please note the new pants as we ended up throwing her old prickly pear pants in the trash!

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As the girls grow we are acquiring more and more boo boos! And we are bound to get more! We bought a Jeep and Q took the bigger girls off roading! DSCN0450They LOVE it. Love. They want to go camping. Hiking. “Driving over the super bumpy parts.” Every. Single. Day. Q is basically the coolest Dad EVER. Even the little one gets Dad time,DSCN0483 perhaps not off-roading though… As the Mom, I’m behind. Behind the camera or staying behind while they GO! But 3rd Edition and I have loads of fun snuggling and making spit bubbles. My life is awesome.

 

Categories: Uncategorized | 3 Comments

1st Run Post Baby

Have mercy.

The first run after ANY trauma is brutal.

The neighbor (lets call her Candy) and I met in the dark of morning at 5. FIVE. Poor Candy, it was our first run together and my first run in 11 months.

First runs as “buddies” are a lot like first dates. Is she saying she runs a 10 minute mile while secretly runs a 7 minute mile…while pregnant…with the stomach flu? Is she wondering if I’ve ever run at all? Is she even going to show up at 5? Am I? And then… we finished the jog, is she ever going to run with me again. Do I text first or wait for her…? See where this is going?

First off, my muscles forgot how to run. We started and I was all over the place. My shirt was coming up, my shoes fit strangely -as things often do once you have a bebe- and I couldn’t breathe. Like right off the  bat I was gasping for air. What happened to my lung capacity? What happened to my body? Why are my knees hurting? What is with all the hills? And stinging nettles?

Part of the pain is physical. I just had a baby. I’m overweight. I was JUST cleared to work out. I’m in high altitude. I’m no longer 18.

Part of it is mental. I USED to be able to run fast. I USED to be able to run for miles. I USED to run easily. For fun. I used to weigh a lot less. I used to fit in my running skorts! When you think about where you’ve been as opposed to where you are now, it can be discouraging.

Back to the run. By mile .35 miles my left calf was burning. Just great. And then it sorta stopped working. The perpetual almost cramp that causes you to run with a funny tilt and praying it doesn’t become a full blown cramp. And while your new running buddy, or possible running buddy stares at you strangely, you hope you don’t fall. Like this is a serious concern.

But, I made it. And it wasn’t pretty. I was a sweaty mess. I ran upstairs thinking Q was in the shower, but he was sleeping, I’d only heard the lawn sprinklers coming on. Sad. I headed back down the stairs only to have my calf finally seize and cramp causing me to catapult down the stairs. Awesome.

Between the jog and the stairs – I’m nothing if not graceful.

Honestly, I’m just glad it is over and that I’m not pregnant anymore. I’d much rather workout and have a beautiful baby than pregnant with a valid excuse.

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Categories: Sports, Weightloss, Wellness | Tags: , , , , | 4 Comments

World Cup Fever

…is real over here! Q believes in indoctrinating the girls with soccer early on in their rearing.  And, as you can tell, Q already has his game face on… This is the face I imagine when I envision our girls bringing home potential mates… Good luck boys because this man loves to lift weights, but he LOVES his girls MORE!

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I think she’s pretty. And she’s SO intent on the game. And with that hair, she fits right in!

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I love her. If she could have, she would have been biting her nails when the  Chile and Brazil game came to PK’s!!!

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I started an account on MyFitnessPal. Holey Moley! Um, surprise, I’m eating too much! Gaining control of portions will definitely lead to successful weight loss. Pregnancy is not my friend and I was sick every day, after every meal, so I got used to eating whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. (This happened with Sooner as well.) Bad news – once you stop throwing up all the calories you consume suddenly count. The good news is that I stopped getting sick.

Now that the dust has settled on this tiny person joining our family, it is time to find my new normal.

Categories: Pregnancy, Sports, Weightloss | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

They Went Exploring

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And then my sister and I got in trouble for letting our girls roam with rattle snakes.

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The park ranger was kind in his reprimand, but it still made us feel like we were back in middle school…only this time we have SIX daughters between us.

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Six. Dramatic. Girls.

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This was one of my favorite visits yet.

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My sister and her family live overseas, so seeing each other is rare, few, and far between.

But lets be honest here, if she lived down the street we would probably fight all the time. Although half way across the world is a leeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetle too far and I miss her a lot.

And I LOVE 3rd Edition’s hair. The comb has little to no effect, it sticks straight up. She is now 2 months old and it is juuuuuuuuuust starting to curl.

Categories: Family, Hiking, Outdoors | Tags: , | 5 Comments

Things Moms and Other Stupid People Say

6. African American Woman: “Did you know that by putting your daughters hair in pig tails you will stunt her hair growth? You need to just let it go wild. Just put in some gel and let her have an afro.” - Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm. WELL, maybe if I put up her hair EVERY SINGLE DAY or NEVER took the pig tails  out, but I don’t. But thanks for telling me all about it.

7. One Month Post Baby “I know a woman who is 9 months pregnant and her belly is smaller than yours is right now.” Um, thanks? Why on earth would you tell a woman who JUST GAVE BIRTH – 4 WEEKS AGO – that her belly, to you, looks BIGGER than a woman 9 MONTHS pregnant? Do people not understand that I’m too small for my maternity clothing, yet my body has changed shape and it WILL TAKE TIME to change to a pre baby shape?

8. “3 girls? Oh, bummer huh. Well, at least this saves you from all things ‘penis.’ But you have girls so you don’t even know.” Thank you stranger at the park for your kind words. It would appear I shouldn’t have had a boy OR a girl.

9. Ever heard of Royal Crest Dairy? Yah, well a representative was at our door talking to Q. trying to convince us to order their clearly superior dairy products while our then 2 week old infant was with me in the kitchen. Of course baby 3, er Sissy, let out a loud wail. And then I heard this, “Oh, your wife had a baby? Did you know that drinking whole milk will actually HELP her lose the weight?” Did she just tell Q his wife needed to lose weight? The woman realized her error and began trying to dig herself out of the MASSIVE hole she’d dug herself…but it was pointless. The damage was done.

10. “Oh, you had a boy.”  DSCN0309Clearly.

Categories: Crazy Town, Parenting | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments

Suburbia Pt. One – Advice Please

Q and I now live in Suburbia. Complete with a white fence, or is the colour Egg Shell? We have planted flowers and shrubs. We have neighbors and a yard. All of us are new builds and all of us moved in within 6 months of each other.

Remember that fence? The fences are NOT in when you move in. Nope, all that surrounds your home is clay dirt. It is your job to landscape your yard. Whoever wants a fence puts it up. End of story…right?

No. Almost EVERY neighbor owns a dog. There are only three houses that don’t, and ours is one of them. That being said, we don’t care if there is a fence or not. MONTHS ago our immediate neighbor put up a fence. And MONTHS later -today- the neighbor walked into our garage and asked me why we haven’t yet paid for our part of the fence… Pardon? We NEVER spoke about the fence…EVER. We never agreed to anything. I said as much and she blurted that the fence is mutually beneficial so…

I want to have a good relationship with our neighbors. At the same time I want boundaries. You can’t just decide what we pay for and what we don’t… Right? If they had spoken with us FIRST perhaps, but even so we aren’t interested in a fence.

And now I feel like an adult.

 

 

Categories: Crazy Town | Tags: , | 6 Comments

The TuTu Brigade

The 3rd Edition arrived and wore, OF COURSE, her first Arsenal jersey.DSCN0265

The labor was fast and furious. In fact, The Third Addition arrived so quickly that Q delivered her in our bathroom while midwives were en route. She is the smallest of all our babes.

I’d love to tell you that her entrance into our family was seamless BUT, it was a hard week. On the day of her birth, Sooner came down with a fever and became a hacking mucus making machine. Two days later, Gooner had a fever and joined a hacking Sooner. And then I got it. Oh have mercy…I JUST had a baby!!! The beginning of breast feeding is RARELY easy. Sure, it is AHMAZING, but um it is painful. And with THREE little girls that needed me, while sick myself, I felt weary and exhausted.

I am so thankful to everyone who brought us meals! Life savers I tell ya! My voice FINALLY returned and I feel like a Mom again. The 3rd Edition is also showing glimpses of her own special and unique personality. And SHE is perfect for our family. This Daddy LOVES his girls!DSCN0319

 

Categories: Family | Tags: , | 8 Comments

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