Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Big Steps & Perma Kiss

The castle that started it all~
Go Carts~ FUN!

My smiley girl

Pretty~


Awwwww...relaxing afte a long play FULL day

Well, I'm Grace free until Saturday after driving to St Louis & back today. I've talked to her twice since leaving & my sister 4 times. Hmmmm...I wonder who's having a hard time? She was so sweet last night as we pre-packed the car. She pulled my face close to hers & kissed me at least 100 times. "Now these are for when you miss me."

Closing in on the Big Bridge over the Mississippi, Gracie knew we were getting close. "Mom, if you miss me, just go lay down on my bed & think of me. You can sleep with one of my animals if you want." Giggling under my breath at the drama in her voice, "And I have all those kisses you gave me last night," I replied. "Actually, no you washed them all off in the shower this morning. But let me sing you a song so you will remember me." Sung to the tune of Where Are You Christmas?

I love you, Mommy, always remember. God loves you and me and we will always be together. He will keep us safe.

I could hear her voice break a bit & sure enough, tears were just about to spill onto her chubby cheeks. Moved by her tenderness, I held her hand for a bit before she pondered possible contention with her cousin, Haddon. Very thoughtfully, she decided they must get along; even if she had to give up the blue piece & take the red one. She likes red just the same. :o) Then she reminded me how he pushed her into the pool when she was little. I can't believe this girl's memory. I think she was 2 years old. Anyway...she would not let that happen again because now she can just swim.
Regarding Haddon, who is 5 1/2, we had this exchange last night:

So, mom, will Haddon be 8 before me?
Yes, Grace. Haddon will turn 8 before you. His birthday comes before yours.
Ohhhhhhh (as in drat!) Well, I wanted to be buddies.
You can be buddies. You will always be buddies.
No 'cause he's just going off to college (with a little rolling of the eyes)
I love that girl. Have a feeling it's going to be a long weekend without her~ I'll try to manage. :o)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Getting in Position


After two nights of blissful sleep earlier in the week, I've been a bit restless at night the last couple days. Up at 2 AM for at least a couple of hours. Had to resort to a little help from some non-addictive sleep aid for one of those nights. Whatever works, eh? Those couple nights of 8 hours were heavenly. Maybe I'll have another angelic slumber tonight....I'm prayerful.

One benefit of my wakeful state in the early AM is hearing Gracie laugh in her sleep; talk a bit & well, you just never know what you'll hear out that girl. When she was tiny...like two months, she started laughing in her sleep. Too delightful to keep to myself, I told my quilting friends about it. Sure, sure...she's laughing; it's GAS!! One afternoon we had a daylong stint of restoring antique German wedding baskets. Deep in our work, sleeping Grace, 2 months old, started giggling & no more doubting this mama. She still laughs, giggles & sometimes cries in her sleep.

So one night this week, Grace called out for me to come lay by her & sing her a lullaby. I lay down & started my crooning, "Wait! Wait!", she cried, wiggling her bucket close to me:"I have to get into position." Sweet moment indeed!

This weekend was full, yet relaxing. We had little Emily over on Friday to play while new mom Stephanie got a good nap in with the preschooler occupied. So nice Steph decided to take me up on my dinner offer. The company was quite nice. Two weekends in a row of entertaining! I've missed it~

We contemplated Kiddieland on Saturday, but with a forecast of rain we opted for the movie. UP was a blast! We laughed ourselves silly & then some. That UP is a must buy movie for sure!

Afterward we headed to Target for some necessity shopping. Gracie spotted a castle & fountain across the parking lot. Gee...did we have to discover Hollywood Park today? :o) We ended up playing a grand round of putt-putt & Gracie climbed the rock wall. She pleaded for the go-carts, but I was ure that was an Uncle Bob activity. However, we staked out a place at one of the turns & every single person that flew by in those go-carts was either grinning from ear to ear or laughing outloud. Knowing that such laughter is very good for the mind, body & soul - we HAD to take our turn on the motorized speedy cars. It was truly fun, fun, FUN! Grace was a bit sad she couldn't drive, but still enjoyed the ride. :o)

Pictures to post another time~ Guten Nacht, meine Fruendin~

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Summer Time, Summer Time

Whoo hooo! No pain today! To go from such extreme pain yesterday to NO pain today - whoa, I think that's a God thing. I'm thankful! If you prayed, if you said an encouraging word or wished me well - THANKS!

Today is a free day...no obligations, nothing pressing. I've got some reporting to do - piece of no-pressure cake. Speaking of cake...I've got a hankering for a key lime pie. I make a mean one - a weight watcher worthy recipe that I'd love to find & make again. Yummmmmm....

We might visit a new water park/playground that recently opened (June 09) not too far from us. It's FREE this summer. A really nice way to promote your new facility. Grace went this past Sunday with some friends. I was a bit sceptical when the BFF invited Grace .
"Yep and it's even FREE. Well, you have to have your swimming
suit on under your clothes. You just show them like this (lifts her shirt a bit)
and then they let you in without even paying."
Ok...right. We'll have to check in with your parents and I'll let you know. Sure 'nough - she was correct. Free this summer - just have to be in your swim suit when you arrive. Great day for Grace & some nice study time for mama. So thinking it might be nice to visit today & check it out for myself. Let me find my shades & suit. :ol

Study time...yes, had a big exam yesterday in my audiology class. Oh, yeah...knocked it out of the park. I needed to make up for some lost point from that horrendous 1st exam. :o)

This past weekend, my friend Steph came over for a sleepover. We packed a yummy picnic lunch with BBQ ribs from the grill, homemade potato salad (my mom would be proud), grilled garlic bread & the ultimate epitome of summer dessert - well, I don't know the official name but it has pears, lime laced cream cheese & whipping cream. SCRUMPTIOUS! Packed up the cooler, beach bag, sand toys & headed to the beach.



Gracie made a new friend. Nice~


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Semi meets SUV: I'm still standing (thankfully)

What a day, what day! I'll spare you the nitty gritty, but suffice to say yesterday was a bad day. Onstar sent me to a parking lot by the airport for my 1st appointment. Uh...no, I am going to a HOUSE - not a car. Knew there was a problem when I had to turn on a street they identified as "Rental Car". Not even Rental Car Boulevard or Lane, just Rental Car. "This just isn't right. Double check that please." Turn by turn took me right into a parking lot - long term for the airport. THENNNNN....listening to the advice of a Chicago neighborhood guy - confident as confident could be that Keating was just a block shy of Kedzie. Confidence is not always correct.

Geezzzz...I finally made it to that evaluation. Literally finished & was in my car in 15 minutes. Another 15 mintues later found me in the back of an ambulance after my intimate enounter with a semi tractor trailer. He didn't budge. Not a scratch on that dirty old truck. Earlier so irritatingly incompetent, Onstar had dispatched emergency services before I could reach for the button to call them.
So my 1st ambulance ride. Thankfully, I was coherent & alert to get the full experience. No, my head did not bust that windshield. I don't think so. Right? There would be more blood, right? Seriously...they were great! The ER...ummm, not a comforting experience. Actually, it's just as chaotic as on TV. Lots of people, lots of drama...trauma. Thankfully, I was "general care" with my superficial wounds & moved to the other side of the ER to wait for hours - X ray & such. Released to Enterprise Rent-A-Car with this advice: You will feel worse tomorrow. Take plenty of Motrin. Don't worry, your skin will grow over those tiny shards of glass we can't see.

Got the rental, drove to the tow yard for a look at the car from outside. Wow! God is good - I can't believe I walked away with only scratches, scrapes & bruises. The force of the airbag shattered the windshield. No wonder my chest hurts. Thank God for the airbag & seatbelts.

Really, I'm thankful. Made it back to pick Gracie up from swim lessons. Thanks to Natalie & Ana for taking such good care of my baby while I was a work & various appointments throughout the day. Thanks to Bob for getting the prayer going before I even got to the hospital. Thanks to all those who've called or checked in to see how I'm doing. Ya'll are the best!

Grace. Lots of 'splaining to do about my wounds and the new car. She cried & hugged & cried & hugged. I sat in the back seat with her for about 30 minutes. She's so senstive. Lots of Grace loving last night. Holding on tight...you never know what can happen in a moment. God is good.

So, still trying to catch up here at Grace FULL Days. These are pics from the 4th of July weekend. Nice time...parade with friends & a little festival-ing. Another parade...just as nice, though in the rain. Community band & fireworks - great fireworks display in our little village.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Hello Again & Added Smilebox


Agh! I'm so far behind in updating this blog, I think I'm ahead! Well, it's only 1.5 months since I've updated. Been facebooking on a consistent basis...doesn't do much good here though, does it?

Summer is in full swing, though the weather has been less than ideal. Swim lessons are in full throttle, finishing up next week.

Catch up time: Gracie's 5th birthday was mid June. Celebrated with friends n family at the park with an afterparty at the water park. Wheeee! Roomie Runion '09 in late June was an uber fun time!
Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: Roomie Reunion '09
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In the meantime...catching up on some overdue photos of our memories the past couple of months. Oh...gee, I just remember I still haven't posted pics from Germany. I think on a subconscience level that says something. Hmmm?





Gracie's graduation in May. Kindergarten here we come!! :o)... :o( it's bittersweet.

Gracie riding her bike big girl style - no training wheels!!
I have one class this trimester - intro to audiology. Intro, right - I swear it is material from this guy's graduate course he teaches at Northwestern. The upside? Incredibly interesting, making it the fastest 3 hours in my entire higher ed career. I continue to be amazed at the complexity of God's creation. How one can believe this intricacy randomly evolved is beyond me.

The sun is peeking out though the forecast calls for rain. I'm making potato salad & have ribs ready to grill in hopes of having a beachside picnic this afternoon. Join us!