Ben turned 4 yesterday. We had a nice little family party and our neighbors came over for pinata breaking and cake. Here follows pictures of Ben and his party along with some gratuitous animal and baby pics just for the heck of it.
The outdoor cat---
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
September 13, 1974 - March 18,1976
My baby sister would have been 33 today. The grief has lessened over the years. For the better part of my childhood I was almost obsessed with Jill and how and why she died. She died after an attempt to repair her heart defect. Even though the repair was technically successful Jill's heart was just too weak.
Now that I have a bunch of girls who are sisters I wonder what it would have been like to grow up with her. Would we have been as close as Grace and Emma? Would we have had things in common or been two very different people?
God sent us Jill for such a short time but what a blessing she was. She will be missed until the end of my days. It is a comfort to me and to the children to have a little saint in Heaven praying for them and watching over us all. And should I make it to Heaven, seeing her again for the first time.........
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
This is what was slithering around our front door today. Ian was about to step outside the front door and says, "Mom, it's a coral snake." as calm as can be. My response? "That isn't funny Ian!" "No Mom, really!!". I get up and look and there it goes right along the bottom of our front door, around the corner and over towards my garage.
OK, first things first. Shut the door. "Kids, do NOT open that door or go outside!" Next, shut the garage door. Here comes the outdoor cat. Grab Blackie and throw him in the house. Stop think. You are supposed to call someone to take these things away. Who do I call? Wait. Keep it from getting away. "Kids, grab me a bin!" dump out Ben's blocks and I go outside with a bin and drop it over the snake (about 2 ft long). Miss and land on him. Quickly pick it up and drop over him. Go back inside. (From the initial finding of the snake to dropping the bin was probably 2 minutes of less) Take a deep breath. Try and call La Vernia Fire Dept non-emergency number. No answer. Call husband. "Hon, we have a coral snake. Who should I call?" He tells me to let the cat get him. Ummm, no, I'm not taking the chance that the cat will either a) decide he doesn't feel like killing a snake today and let the highly venomous snake go on his merry way or b) get killed by the snake.
In the end the Wilson County Sheriffs Dept sends someone out. Turns out THREE deputies show up, guess there wasn't much happening today. When the deputy picked up the bin the snake turned out to be pretty much dead/dying from when I dropped the bin on him. Death by Rubbermaid! The deputy whacked him once on the head with his baton to make sure he was good and dead and then put him in an evidence bag to dispose of him. I'm sure the frazzled Yankee mom will be the topic on much laughter today.
P.S. The deputy asked if I wanted to keep it and put it in a jar of alcohol. Now I'm a pretty tolerant, cool homeschooling mom but I NOT that cool!
Sunday, September 9, 2007
While mowing our yard yesterday (I can't call it a lawn, it's mostly sand and weeds) I realized something.
I was tooling along on our little John Deere. Ok, stop laughing. We own a riding mower, a John Deere, the exact one in the picture, complete with matching green trailer...and I use it. It's great fun! Anyway back to my story. I was in the front of our property where we have no trees. The sun was shining, gorgeous blue sky, puffy clouds and I said to myself "I really do like living in TX". It was very hard leaving our friends and family back East but we really have been very happy here.
I had another flat tire and it wasn't but 10 seconds before someone stopped to help me, turned out to be a neighbor who lives about half-mile up the street from us-the girls know his dogs. Now, a man stopping to help a lady with a car full of kids change a tire isn't all that remarkable. Get this. He tells me to take my groceries, the kids and take HIS TRUCK and take them all home. This guy only knows me by sight and I only know the names of his dogs and he's sending me off with his Supercab mongo diesel truck! I took my milk and the little girls and dropped them home. The girls thought it big fun to ride in a pickup :-)
Let's return to my adventures in mowing. As I'm doing some more work in the front Grace calls out, "Mom, the deer!" It's about 1PM and there is a doe walking down the middle of our street. Poor thing is probably the mother of the fawn that was mauled by dogs the other day, she's been acting a little mental ever since, can't say I blame her. So we watch her cruise through our front yard and neighbors and head into an empty lot. Sure we saw deer and wildlife in our other homes but not so up close and personal-we can hear owls and coyotes when we sit outside.
This weekend I got the rest of my plants in, played in the pool with the kids (another neighbor gave us one of the 14ft inflatable pools), finished taking down a felled tree without our chainsaw (yes, we have a chainsaw too-STOP LAUGHING), got it to the burn pile, mowed the lawn, went to Mass, watched football, had a nice visit with two neighbors, talked to another freind about Bunco next week and best of all....now brace yourselves. It's a true Texas miracle.
We found good pizza. Almost makes you want to cry. No, really. C'mon a Jersey girl without access to decent pizza? I make my own, but it just is NOT the same.