Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Season Ends


we lost....

it wasn't even particularly close....

which is both a disappointment....

and a sort of relief.....

but at the end of the day....

it was a great season....

a blessing of friends, fun....

...competition....pain...and achievement....

and now we can celebrate the good times.

And rest.

On the Bus

The Eagles have which I mean both boys, Andrew and Zachary (85 above), are suited up, fed well (ok...pb&j's but that is what they REQUESTED) and ON THE BUS TO THE METRODOME.  We are following shortly.  Today is the semi-finals game.  If they win this they play for the state title next Saturday!  And if they lose, we cry and life returns to a semi-sane level.  It's really a win win situation.  But make no of those "wins" is in CAPITAL LETTERS!

OK...that "win win situation" thing....nobody else feels that but me.  And I don't really feel that way...I'm just trying to soften the blow, hedge the bets, cushion the get the idea.  I'm the mother.

So wish us luck! 

I'll be sure to let you know how it all goes!

No news is good news....means we are celebrating.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

To the Dome

When Andrew and Zachary were starting out in football, the big carrot held out to their teams was that the final game in playoffs would be in the Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis.

I can't begin to tell you how huge of a thing this
"play! in! the! Dome!"

And now it's going to happen again in the State Semi-finals on Saturday!
This time, both boys will be on the field.
But just for a walk down memory lane...

 A friend sent me these....her son (8) is standing next to Andrew (number 5).

From the sober faces, I think the above shot was before the game.


....and AFTER....

Hopefully we have another win "in the Dome" this weekend, but regardless, these pictures reminded me of the blessing of friends who go way back to the beginning of things with you.

Those kinds of friends are treasures from God and just can't be replaced.


Yet another thing to be thankful for in this season of Thanksgiving!

Go Zephyrs!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It's Been A Long Time Coming

Lily had a dream.

For years, Lily had dreamed the dream of sideliner siblings the whole world over.

The dream itself was simple...

it was that she, for once, would be the one in uniform.

...she would be the one with the ball...

...with the waterbottle, hastily filled while the rest of the family clambored into the car...

...rushing and bustling to get HER to HER game on time...

...dropping HER off at the field while THEY went to park the car....

...and carry all the chairs and cameras and blankets to the sidelines...

HER sidelines....


It almost happened last Spring...but then a concussion put her out for the season.



 She wasn't all that certain how the game of soccer actually went....

But her own private fan club sat right behind her goal.

And she knew how to drink like she'd just walked the Sahara....
...because that's what you do...
..when your own private fan club is watching you drink....

 She was short (yes...Lily is short) and spunky....

....and when she mowed someone down...
....she never looked back....


Thursday, November 11, 2010


Life in the modern world can get complicated fast. I already bored you all with my broken furnace last week.  So I won't drone on about the broken dishwasher AND garbage disposal and the running toilet.  But I will tell you about something which has made the last few days complicated and stressful.  I LOST MY CELL PHONE.....not no no....but TWICE.  I lost it for two days, found it for about 5 hours and then lost it AGAIN, and alas have never found it although I have turned the house upside down.  And believe me, going through my household is a daunting task.

I can't believe how dependent I am on constant communications.  Because of one missing little 4 x 2 inch box of plastic and wires, we have missed dentist appointments, shown up to practices with no shoes, weathered social calamities that are so complicated I still don't understand them and run out of milk twice....and all because I wasn't available at a moment's notice for three days!

In case  you are wondering how I managed to lose it so readily, twice in the same day....I was cleaning the house.  And when I clean the house, I walk around for hours putting random things away in far off places where I normally fear to tread!  So I am sure that my poor old cell phone is lying dead as a doornail in some basket of yarn or the back of the freezer or under a tupper ware lid.  NOoooooo....just testing you.....I didn't clean out the TUPPERWARE CABINET....that's 20,398th on my household to do list!  And it's probably by some twist of fate or a rent in the fabric of time, exactly where my phone is.

I'll let you know!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Timmy's Two Loves

There are two things in this world that my 11 year old boy LOVES:

Funnel Cakes.....

...and his dog Molly.

And I, his loving mother, made these for him as a treat. 
It had ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the fact that I'd been craving them ever since I watched Timmy and Lily devour them at Valley Fair Amusement Park in August.

I made them for the sheer love of Timmy.

And Molly....
Molly definitely loves Timmy back....
but she too has another love....

...and it's NOT the cat.

It's "Blue Monkey"
We have a penchant for simple names around here.
(I once had a pony named....drumroll..."Pony.")

She loves Blue Monkey with every tooth she has!

"Wait!  Time out!  Whatabout me?"
"Remember meeeeeeee?"
We remember you, Lily, but this post is about Timmy and Molly.

...and Blue Monkey.
Look into those eyes....
(Molly's not the monkey's....)

No wonder Timmy loves her.

disclaimer....the stuffing you see here is from her monkeys were harmed in the making of this post.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

"If You're Appy and You Know It..."

"If you're appy and you know it clap your hands!"
Turns out Zachary was appy....appendicitus-wise that is, but we didn't know it!
A quick 20 hour sojourn at Children's in St. Paul did the trick in no time!
Here's the patient...mouth a little swollen from the tubes and all, but still feeling like football.
Of course, it'll be football from the sidelines for awhile.
I refuse to discuss when he will be back on the field.
It's a touchy subject around here.
And I'm in the minority.
And I don't much care for being in the minority because I find it a lonely and difficult place to be.

He was welcomed home by some special guys.
You may not realize this (I didn't), but football players are brothers.
(Well...number 21 really is his brother, but you know what I mean.)
These fellows brought him at least $70 bucks worth of gag gifts and candy.
Warmed my heart....

He's a trooper.
Get well soon, Zachary.
What?  You think you're playing this week?
Not that soon!

Saturday, November 6, 2010


The year is 1975.  A 5 year old girl lays out a large blanket in the middle of her bedroom and starts placing toys in the middle.  She ties it up in a huge knot and sticks an old broom handle in it....wait...she doesn't have a broom handle.  Drama. Complications.  She goes and asks her mother for an old stick or something to complete her hacksack so that she can proceed with running away forever and ever.  For some reason it was important to have the stick with the bundle on the end....just like in the pictures.

The patient mother surveys the mess.  The girl stands with her hands on her hips ready to defend her determination to leave this family which pays her no attention anymore, the jealousy and indignation rising in her chest!  Instead, the mother pitches a curveball....

     "I guess it's your choice...I'll be really sad if you leave.  I don't want you to go.  Do you think you could at least stay for supper before you leave?  I made jello....your favorite."

The girl stands confused!  She ponders the fact that she didn't realize that jello was her favorite, but apparantly it was!  She feels paralyzed.  She'd better stay....for the jello!  So she stays for supper and after supper is so tired that she decides she won't run away today after all.  Maybe next week she will make good on the plan to live in the small town's park and hide under picnic tables, eating people's leftovers and sleeping in the play equipment and eavesdropping on people strolling in the park discussing her amazing and sad departure.  Next week would be good.

Now fast forward to a sunny November day, 2010..... today.   The little girl is now 40, and another five year old girl is sitting by the front door, her purple Winnie the Pooh backpack strapped to her shoulders, resolutely tying her shoes.

"Lily, where are you going with your backpack hon?"

"I'm leaving.  Nobody around here pays any attention to me anymore."

"Lily...don't be jealous...we were just rubbing Katie's shoulders because she picked up the basement....what do you mean?"

"You rubbed Katie's shoulders and you never rub mine.  Goodbye."

She then marches out the door.  Her mom, dad, brother and sister dumfoundedly follow.  She walks, shoulders squared, in determined strides down the sidewalk.

At this point, the mother does a strange thing....things are happening fast, the girl is on the go...somebody has to say something so...."Lily!....  Lily! I'm making jello for dinner!...your favorite!  Don't'll miss the jello!"

There is a stunning pause while the mother waits for this to work its magic...she isn't even sure why she just said this, but she feels in her gut it will turn things around....

The girl doesn't miss a step as she says,......"No thanks!" 

She marches on, around the house and on past the neighbor's.  Her dad follows.  Her mom and siblings run through the house to the back to see where she goes.  She's crying now.  She starts running as she realizes her dad is following her.  He's still faster than her five year old legs.  He catches her and swoops her up in his strong arms.  He holds her close.  She cries on his shoulder while he tells her he will always follow after her....that he couldn't ever let her run away without trying to get her back....that he and her mother love her every minute of every day...even if they don't give her backrubs as much as she would like.  He carries her, as she sobs, back to the house...

...where her mother, a blogger, is waiting with the camera.

Once family unity is restored, it is uncovered that she had packed her backpack with toys and was on her way to China to live with the Keller's.

We are glad she decided to stay with us instead.

Although the Keller's are an impressively good choice. 

And we had jello at dinner.

Friday, October 29, 2010

What to do...

It amazes me how out of touch we are in modern life with how things work.  My furnace wouldn't start this morning when I went to turn it on for the first time.  The house was 60 degrees, so I thought it an appropriate start to the day.  Of course, WHY it doesn't work is a complete mystery to me.  I fidgeted with a few dials and switches, none of which I understand the mechanics of, but I toyed with them anyway, hoping for some miraculous healing.  It's happened before.

So what would the pioneers have done?  They, at least, understood the mechanics of their world.  They would have known how to fix their situation.  Does it bother anyone else in modern society that we lack even the means to warm ourselves by methods which we as individuals can understand and control and fix?  And my furnace is a relatively simple piece of modern equipment!  I won't even go into the strange sounds coming from my car which I ignore because I neither comprehend them nor truly want to comprehend them.  I just know that when it ultimately stops working, I will pick up my cell phone, which I couldn't begin to understand on anything other than a "which button to push" level, and call a mechanic who will use tools that he doesn't understand to fix it!

This constant feeling of not knowing and being at the mercy of someone else bothers me!  It is one reason, among many, that I dream of moving to some remote place and living off the land, off the grid, somewhere where if something breaks, I will at least intellectually know how to fix it even if I lack the brute strength....where I can be master of my world instead of a slave to the yellow pages.

By the way, anybody living near me know a good furnace repairman???

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Different Kind of Same

Every year we go to the Minnesota State Fair.
What I love about the fair, what keeps me coming back, what makes me strive and juggle and squeeze to fit it into our busy end of summer how every year it's the same family traditions full of memories and laughs, but every year it's different and unique at the same time.

It's a different kind of same.

Now there have been a couple of years that we didn't go.
But with college on the  horizon, I am becoming a tradition tigress.  Nobody is allowed to mess with my family's traditions...not even the family themselves!

This year's visit was on a gorgeous cool weekday.
No crowds.

And it was just the perfect mix of old trusted stops and a few new ones.
I'll let you know which was which.

Browsing the junk--I mean souvenir booths....OLD.
Not asking for anything right off the bat....NEW.

Butterfly House...OLD
Lily not screaming her HEAD off.....NEW!

Marvelling at God's handiwork..... NEVER GETS OLD!

Cotton Candy........OLD
Everybody getting their own.....NEW
(We decided to give them each a certain amount of cash and let them buy their own food and souvenir items this year.  It backfired horribly because everybody wanted to taste everyone else's food, so Tim and I ended up buying more for the sad child who made the mistake of purchasing anything.  It was a good idea in theory.)

Eating on a stick....OLD
Eating crocodile....NEW!

OLD....She gets cotton candy whenever she wants it.
Cause she can't eat it all, and her momma likes cotton candy a lot!

FRUIT...yes FRUIT...fried on a stick....VERY NEW...

REPEAT fruit on a stick because everybody ate his first one.

OK....this was SO funny....Look at the ducklings in the back trying desperately to fit three of themselves through one little hole!  It wasn't even a big hole.  WHY?  For some reason it reminded me of my kids.

We don't mess with the biggest pig tradition.
You haven't seen the fair until you've seen the biggest pig.

Piggy Hats....OLD
Piggy Faces....NEW

Llamas.....WAY NEW!
Where have you guys been all these years?

Family Picture while having Pronto Pups and milk fresh from cows that morning...OLD.
Crow's Feet and those lines on my neck...what are those?....sigh...NEW.

Bald Eagle Talk....NEW!

Buying a slushy and souvenir for the child who has to wait for older siblings to get out of the mirror maze...OLD.
Tim at the fair wearing a pink sequined hat....NEEEEW.
Take a look at the lady on the bench.  She's onto me.

Ah the fair...
the hunger pangs,
 the stomache aches,
 the smells,
the tired walk back home,
the being together.
Good Times.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Just photos this time.
No silly captions or complicated narrative.
Just take a few seconds to enjoy a vicarious walk through sunshine, sweetness and childhood.
And then go grab a kid you know and head to the ice cream shop!
These were taken on a lovely afternoon's ramble at Como Zoo in St. Paul last month.

The End

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Footballs for Brains

Here, my friends, is why I have no time to blog.
I'm too busy having a ball dressing up and pretending to be a football Mom.
Well, technically I AM a football Mom.
Thanks to number 21, who let me wear his jersey ONE game....and number 85 who never comes over for pictures because he's too busy gabbing with his friends!
I felt extremely "cool."
Those are shadows not crows feet.
Just saying.

Here's the one focused action shot I have so far this season!
This is Andrew.
He plays Safety for the varsity defense.

This, number 85 in front, is Zach who plays an assortment of positions, mostly Fullback, for the varsity offense!
Been an exciting year!
Till now.
Due to cracked ribs (Andrew) and appendicitus/surgery (Zach), neither boy played football last week.
We survived. play another day...

"Go Zephyrs"
(The Zephyr is our mascot and is a Roman diety or soldier or something like that...because Mahtomedi is oh so similar to Rome...???  It's also a wind.) 
I am doomed, it seems to peculiar mascots.  In jr. high we were the "Comets" and in high school we were the "Meteors."  No "Tigers" or "Panthers" or "Wildcats" for me!

Just rocks from space and obscure pagan entities.

No Matter!

Because the REAL fun of football is this:

I love just watching them go!

He's little....but mighty....and sneaky...and very quick!

Andrew was a little sore from the game the night before, so he sat this one out...

....sorta sat it out...
in a flipping upside down sorta way.

Rose colored glasses for a happy little cheerleader!

Oh....sorry....back to the GAME!

This play will end in pain.

He's mapping out his future appendectomy scar; he just doesn't know it.
I've often wanted to join the huddle and make random marks over my gut and then yell "break!" and just see what happens....what sort of play turns up!
Admit that would be fun!

Into it.

I told you he was sneaky!

Then I got bored and decided to take some shots of the bench warmers....

...Go Team!

Go me~!
I thought this was a great shot!
Go Swedes!

Enjoy the football season, everyone!
What?  The Vikings are playing and why am I up here on the computer blogging?
Please!  I didn't get a personality transplant or anything.