Wednesday, December 04, 2013

The New Normal

It is currently zero degrees outside. Zero degrees. This may not seem like something significant to the many millions of people in our great nation who regularly experience the fifth season (spring, fall, summer, winter, frigid), but for me it marks yet another line in the sand as I become acquainted with my new normal.

My backyard is covered in snow. Not my friends' backyard where we are visiting. Not the backyard of a picture I happen to be viewing. Not even the imaginary backyard I pictured covered in snow while still living where there are only two seasons (fog, and not fog). Nope. None of these, but my actual backyard. It's another new normal.

We worshipped at our new normal church.

I bought groceries at my new normal store.

My kids played at their new normal friends' houses.

I now have a heated water bottle for the rabbit hutch, salt pellets for a water softener, and a fridge that provides filtered drinking water out of the door. Every one a new normal.

In fact, besides some basic facts regarding my name and some legal documentation that permanently connects me to eight little people and one man, there is just about nothing left of my old normal.

This isn't necessarily a bad thing. It just - is.

I am learning to like the new normal and be content to simply remember the old normal with fondness. It takes time to make new associations, build new relationships, figure out the best route for that 10pm sweet tooth craving. I know that it will all come in time.

And while I wait I sit here, considering the magnitude of what brought me to this point in the story, and shake my head that God made it all work.

Evangeline - who will only ever remember the new normal

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The 80's

 You know you grew up in the 80's if.....
You know what "Sike" means.
You know the profound meaning of "Wax on. Wax off."
You know that another name for a keyboard is a "Synthesizer".
You can sing the McDonald's Big Mac, Filet-o-fish, quarter pounder, and French fry song.
You know who Mr. T is.
You know who Fat Albert is. 
You ever wore fluorescent, neon clothing.
You could breakdance, or wish you could.
You Believed that "By the power of Greyskull, you HAD the power!"
Partying "like it's 1999" seemed SO far away.
You thought that Transformers (the original) were more than meets the eye.
You knew that knowing is half the battle.
You wanted to be on Star Search.
You wore a banana clip at some point during your youth.
You remember the garbage pail kids, and owned some.
You knew "Rut row raggy" and "Zoinks."
You HAD to have your MTV & you  watched music videos on it..
You remember when ATARI was a state of the art video game system.
You owned cassettes.

You remember life before minivans and SUVs.
You remember and/or owned any of the Care Bear glasses collection from Pizza Hut or the Muppets glasses from McDonalds
You knew who Ben Stein was before you could win his money, "Bueller?"
You carried your lunch to school in a Gremlins, ET, Dukes of Hazard, Knight Rider, Strawberry Shortcake or A-Team lunch box.
You know what leg warmers are and probably had a pair.
You wore your Izod shirt with the collar up.
You had a Swatch Watch with the Swatch Guard.
You remember when Happy Meals came in a box, not a paper bag.
You remember when Saturday Night Live was funny.
You know what a "Push Up" ice cream is.
You had to change into play clothes after school.
You owned, or knew somebody with a Commodore 64.
You hated Scrappy Doo.
You recorded songs off the radio with your boom box.
Somehow you still know all the words to songs played on VH1's "Big 80's" ("it's been 7 hours & 15 days...")
Your arm was full of rubber bracelets.
You have ever said, "Gag me with a spoon."
You have ever wondered what happened to Saturday morning cartoons.
You had to get up to change the channel.
You can still sing 1 to 12 from the Pinball machine on Sesame Street.
You thought the "Thriller" video was pretty cool.
You remember the first time you went into a video store to rent a movie.
You wore those wide, colorful shoelaces.
Quiet Riot's "Come on feel the noise" was the best song - ever.
You still cannot go in to the water because of that damn movie - Jaws.
El Debarge's "Get a beat to the Rhythm of the night" plagued the radio every hour.
You were led to believe that in the year 2000 we'd all be living on the moon.


Monday, August 19, 2013



     hardy. As much as my first-born is a girl, and loves to do girly things, she isn't afraid of hard work. Hannah doesn't struggle much with a complaining attitude, and takes life in stride whether it is handing out roses or sending rain.

     awesome. I love her! She is fun to be around and has a great laugh. She has grown so much in her conversational style, and the two of us really enjoy hanging out with one another. We can have a great laugh together, or simply read in silence.
     neat. Hannah is a neat girl, both in her management of stuff and her personality. She is respectful and sensitive to cleaning up her messes (as well as helping with her younger siblings' stuff). I rarely need to concern myself with her belongings. But more than that, she is a really cool girl.

     nice. I want to apply this most especially to her work with her younger siblings. Hannah works hard to participate in caring for her brothers and sisters. She is responsible, and takes that responsibility seriously. Rather than ignore their needs, she will find ways to resolve situations with them and between them. As a freshman in high school she is still not above playing Polly Pocket, Legos, or catch with the other kids.

   active. Even with asthma she readily jumps into any sport being played. She runs hard and loses well. Hannah also keeps an active mind with reading, reading, reading. She adores books, and finds just about any excuse to stop and peruse one.       

     honest. I think of all my children Hannah is the most naturally honest one of the bunch. She has never been one for telling lies, and I can consistently count on getting the truth without a bunch of rigamarole - even when it is not in her favor. I genuinely appreciate this characteristic, and know that it will serve her well in life.