Sunday, March 30, 2008


Last Thursday morning, my Grandad went to heaven to be with Jesus.
Dear Grandad,
It was really hard to say goodbye to you yesterday! I miss you so much already, but I am so glad you are with Jesus.
You would have been pleased with the service. There were SO many people there--you really packed the place out! People came--most of whom I didn't even know--to pay their respects to you and share how you had touched their lives. It was so obvious that you made an impact just by living your day-to-day life. You weren't in the spotlight much. You weren't wealthy or famous or political. You just loved life and by being yourself, you made a difference.
You loved all of us, too, and here's the culmination of what you taught your family: After the graveside service, as people were leaving, your family had an impromptu singalong. We joined hands and stood in a big circle by your casket...did you hear us singing "Blessed Assurance?" I changed the words a bit to say "This is OUR story, this is OUR song, praising OUR Savior all the day long." That is the gift you gave us: Although we are sad because we don't have you here with us anymore, there was great rejoicing for all of us because we know exactly where you are. I told
Goliath that I'm not sad for Grandad at all; I'm only a little sad for myself.
What is it like in heaven? Do you have your own workshop in your mansion? Are your hands big and strong again? Are the Gaithers playing over loudspeakers all the time? Do you have the ultimate video camera? Did you hear Goliath praying for Gran last night? Are you hanging out with Jesus?
I am so proud of you! I promise that I will do my best to carry on your legacy and keep your memory alive for your great-grandsons. They will miss you, too. Thank you for knowing them and loving them, and investing part of yourself in them.
Know that there is an empty place here without you. You were a great man who lived a good life. You can not be replaced and I am holding tight to our memories. Yesterday was not so much "goodbye" as "see you later."
I love you.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Happy Birthday, Little Middle!

Dear Little Middle,

Today you are 4 years old. I love your birthday for a few reasons. One, now I can say that my boys are 6, 4, and 2...which makes me sounds slightly less crazy than when the three of you were 5, 3, and 2 (as you were mid-November to January). Any time I said that to someone, I had to endure the Look of Pity. There's something about being able to claim 2-year intervals between each of you that returns me to the realm of "normal" family planning...not nearly so much 'splainin' to do!

Another reason I love this day is simply to watch you be the star. In spite of my best intentions and hard work, you sometimes get overlooked. You are the middle child. You are not dominant like your older brother nor are you as demanding as your little brother. You are generally content to just BE. If you were more difficult maybe you'd garner more attention (although I'm grateful you're not). On this day, your birthday, it's all about you. Your eyes were wide when you came in the kitchen this morning and saw presents waiting at your place. We did the traditional birthday breakfast muffins--chocolate chip instead of blueberry--and you were nearly smirking as we sang to you.

You were so pleased to be the center of attention, yet you were still sweet and simple. You LOVE the presents we gave you...and who wouldn't totally dig a R2D2 gaming laptop? As the birthday boy, the dinner menu was totally up to you. English muffin pizzas and fruit salad made you happy. I love you because bigger is not always better to you.

I love you because you are your own person. I imagine it can't be easy being a second child. Even though Daddy and I try hard to help you carve out your own place, you are doing fine on your own. You have that great dance move and you make those crazy eyes that none of the rest of us can quite imitate. This last year especially you've made a ton of friends and, if what your teachers tell me is true, other kids fight over who gets to sit next to you. You spend very little time in your brother's shadow.

I love you because you are growing up right before my eyes, and I like what I see. You are not much of a TV watcher. You like superheroes, pirates, and Super Mario Brothers. If given the choice to read a book with me or go outside and collect bugs, you go with the creepy crawlies every time. You are a lovebug, though, and I think it will be a while before you're too cool to say, "I love you, Mom."

In case you didn't get the message today, or any other day, I am totally in love with you. On the day you were born (thankfully in a hospital after a close call in the grocery store) I was unaware how much you would stretch my heart out. I wasn't sure that having a second child would match the emotional intensity I had with my first. But the first time you looked at me with your giant blue eyes you captured me completely. I am a better person because I got to be your mommy. Happy Birthday, big four-year-old.



Saturday, March 8, 2008

Something I Never Thought I'd Hear Myself Say

"Please get your cowboy boots out of the dishwasher."

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like......Texas

The old saying goes, "If you don't like the weather in Texas, wait 24 hours and it will surely change."

On Saturday we went to the zoo and we were sweating.

Here's the scene in our backyard on Monday night:

And yesterday morning:

Snow Brothers

Snow Goliath

Snow Little Middle

Snow Baby with Snow Dog

Baby's Cute Snow-Frog Boots