Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Oh the fun we have!

We are home safely. We had a totally uneventful drive. And a good vacation.
We spent the first half in a town just west of Dallas where we did lots of fun Christmasy stuff and spent lots of time in the pool and hot tub. Oh how I miss the hot tub! I think I may need one!
The second half was spent in Missouri with Matt's brother and sister-in-law and their kids. Good times were had by all. The adventure there happened when their heat went out. It was out nearly the entire time we were there. Gina blames me, rightfully so I suppose. Before going to visit she had told me it was very cold in Missouri. I joked about us not being able to go up there, and asked her how their heat was. She told me it was just fine, and to quit being such a wuss. We get there, the heat goes out. Clearly, my fault. Although, perhaps she was just trying to toughen me up, and perhaps the heat wasn't out at all. It was one big joke. OK, not really, I saw the heating men there with my own two eyes, so it must have been legit.
We baked lots of cookies and ate way too much, but it was fun.
We arrived home on Friday night. That's when the adventure began!
The kids had slept a lot on the way home, so of course they were all wide awake when we got home.
Because everyone went to bed so late, we were late getting to church. It was my week to work in the kitchen, and Matt was leading the song service. He had asked Matthew to watch Emmie while we did our duties. Emmie was spinning in a chair and fell off and hit her face on a metal folding chair. She knocked two of her capped teeth out of alignment. There was blood everywhere and she was screaming bloody murder. We raced home to call the dentist. After talking with her, we decided there wasn't anything more that could be done, but that we would go in for x-rays today.
She has swelled a bit and I noticed her nose was out of alignment now.
The x-rays revealed that her root was fractured and also the bone that holds the teeth has a hairline fracture in it. Nothing can be done, and it's just a waiting game to see if the teeth die. If they die they will have to pull them, so we are praying hard that they stay alive.
Today the teeth are still loose, so we know she hit pretty hard. Thankfully though, she has caps. They told me if the caps weren't there her teeth would have broken right off at the gums.
I think I have been more worried about this than I realized because tonight I am absolutely beat. Not sleepy, just physically exhausted.
Collin had an ophthalmology appointment today and they discovered he is seeing 20/30 corrected now. So that is great. The other doc had said his eyes had gotten worse, but today they said no. YIPPEE!!
Tomorrow night we are having an agape feast at church and I'm apparently in charge of it. Didn't realize that till today, so it's been last minute rushing about to get things done.
I think I need another vacation!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

What has happened to the Monkey's??

So after my last entry we all proceeded to get sick. It hasn't been fun in these parts.
It's starts out innocent enough...just a cough. You don't even feel bad, you just cough. And it's lovely, you cough up phlegm. But alas, you just cough.
But then, oh my lands, it hits you. And it plows you down like the snow plows that are undoubtedly plowing in other parts of the country.
It comes with a nice high fever (104 in my kids) and aches and pains. And sleepless nights because of the endless hacking.
And. if you are particularly lucky, it all changes into pneumonia like it did for poor Zachy.
The very worst part of all of this is that we are leaving tomorrow for vacation. Friends, the Monkey Family never goes on vacation, and we were so looking forward to this break from reality.
But, we will forge on. We will pack our family up along with a plethora of cough meds and antibiotics and throat lozenges. We will brave this illness and be determined to have a good time. And we will SUCCEED!!
I think this may be possible because I think we are all on the downhill side of this. Everyone except Matt, who is just coming into it. Poor thing.
While I'm forcing us to have a good time, I won't have computer access. We are old school folk who don't have a laptop. But I want to take this opportunity to wish every one of you a very, merry Christmas. I hope you all enjoy your families this year and please don't forget the reason for the season. Our wonderful savior, Jesus Christ. May God richly bless you this season.
I'll see you on the flip side!

Friday, December 12, 2008

This is me, at 33.

Yesterday was my birthday! I'm thirty-three now. And it seems a significant number. You only get those doubles every eleven years. This coming year will be special for Dillon since it will be his first ever double!
At any rate, I've decided, this is the year I vow to truly love me.
I looked in the mirror the other day, and I saw something unfamiliar.
I saw stretch marks that are the reward for the five biggest accomplishments of my life.
I saw saggy breasts that sag from years of not only nourishing, but comforting those five children I love so much.
I saw extra pounds packed on during the most stressful of times. Made stressful simply because I love these people so deeply. To watch others go through what my kids go through wouldn't affect me nearly as much.
I saw dark circles under my eyes. They were the result of little sleep. I had been up the night before nursing a sick Emily. They spoke of love to me.
The very best thing I saw was wrinkled creases at my eyes. Crows feet. But guess what. When I frowned and made a face I might make while crying, they weren't there. In fact, there were no wrinkles there. However, when I smiled, and laughed, they were. This is proof to me that my life is much more about laughter and smiles than about frowns and sorrow.
I looked deeper. I saw a heart that should be burst right open. I can't describe how much love is bursting out of my heart. Both my love for others, and their love for me. I must be the luckiest person alive!
I saw compassion. I saw a person able to empathize with many in a way most people cannot. Not because I'm so much better, but because I've been there.
I saw a mature woman.
My mom said this would happen when I turned thirty, but no. It's happening now.
I'm learning that I don't have to be perfect. I don't have to look perfect. Those that matter love me no matter what. And I'm so glad.
Yes, this is my year. I may not lose all this weight. I may not be the perfect mom. I may not be the perfect wife.
But I will be me. And I will love me.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Six Flags Sunday Night

This is the only decent shot we got with Santa. Em, of course, would have nothing to do with him, but the boys..even Matthew...all sat on his lap!

The hot cocoa was a bit too hot, so Matt just gave Emmie the lid with the whipped cream on it. That's the best part anyway!

Dillon was impossible to get shots of that night.

This is a horribly fuzzy picture, but it is Zachy going down the sledding hill. You should have seen how thrilled the kids were. It's the only snow any southern Texan kids see, and they thought it was the greatest thing ever!

Matthew wanted to take Emmie on all the rides with him. This is them on the giant ferris wheel. Of course, Matt was with them, and I was in another bucket with the other three kids.

I have a bunch of pictures of Emmie and Matt that look just like this. For some reason, she thought it was great fun to look at him like that!

Self portrait of me and Collin.

This is my favorite picture of the night. It is the perfect visual for how Emily has been lately. So very, very happy.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Does this make me a hypocrite?

Thursday, Collin had an appointment that brought us to the base.
We were having ice cream at the BX when I noticed our surroundings.
We are at a training base, and every week there is a graduation from Basic Training. Families normally arrive for this on Wednesday or Thursday. Graduation is Saturday.
We were surrounded by young men, and their parents. And suddenly, I was very afraid.
"Do any of you want to join the air force when you grow up?" I asked timidly.
"ME! I do!" Dillon exclaimed excitedly.
My heart sank.
Not my boy. He can't join the military!
OK, now here's the kicker. I love the military. I love what it has done for my family. We are so much better off being a military family than we would be if we were just plain civilians. BUT. Isn't there always a 'but'??
BUT...Matt isn't deployable. And, he isn't my child! (Sorry Anna!)
I really don't make a great military wife. I would be really upset if Matt had to go to war.
Currently, Dillon and Emily are the only two children who could even join the military in our family (which I'm secretly glad about!), and it could be a huge help to them, like it was to us.
But, that doesn't change the fact that they are my babies!
Matt thinks it would be great, and can picture the day we would be back in San Antonio with Dillon for graduation, but me, I'm not so sure.
I mean..look at that innocent little face!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Something wonderful happened last week.

I have no idea what it was, but something happened.
Could it be a new and budding (finally) vocabulary? I don't know, but Emmie went from being so very whiney and demanding to being a sweet, silly, happy girl.
It is so wierd.
She has been sooo difficult all her life, and now just suddenly, she seems content.
I thought maybe it was all the company and the non stop attention, but even with them gone she is so sweet.
She's using new words all the time, and I think that helps a lot. But it seems like so much more than that.
She's just content. And it is so very, very wonderful!
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