Saturday, September 30, 2006

A Blast from the Past

My youth minister from high school is in town, and I have gotten the chance to spend some time reminiscing about old friends and good times. Danny and his wife, Amy, were very influential to me in my teen years and they have remained very good friends throughout the years. They are the type of friend that you just pick up where you left off with them no matter how long it has been since you have seen them or talked to them.

Whenever I think of my old youth minister, one story ALWAYS comes to my mind. I have debated putting this on here, but it is a great story.

While on a high school retreat, my youth minister and I decided to play a game of chicken. In our version of chicken, you stand opposite of your opponent with your feet spread apart. You then take a pocket knife,throw it and try to make the point of the knife stick in the ground. If you get it to stick in the ground, then you get to tell the person which foot he/she has to move. The goal is to get the person to move his/her feet closer and closer together until the person says chicken and you win. This is not your typical youth group retreat game, but everyone seemed to be getting a pretty big kick out of watching us do this so we thought it was fun.

We hit a point in the game where my feet were only about 6 or 7 inches apart. At this point, any reasonable person would have said chicken. The key to that statement was a REASONABLE person. At that time in my life, I was very competitive and wasn't going to give in and lose without a fight. So, I told him to throw the knife. My wise youth minister told me that I really needed to say Chicken, but I wouldn't and didn't listen and told him to throw the knife. My guess is that I really thought he wouldn't do it and that he would probably quit the game leaving me the winner; however, I am not positive I even thought that. All I knew was that I was going to win.

Well, the youth minister threw the knife, and unfortunately, instead of sticking in the ground, it stuck in my foot. I can still see the look of horror on my youth minister's face. Right there, he saw his judgment and job go down the tubes. The preacher's son had a horrified look on his face too; however, it wasn't for the same reason. He yelled out, "Don't tell my dad about this. I wasn't supposed to bring his pocket knife and I am going to be in so much trouble."

I just quietly sat down and pulled the knife out of my shoe (and foot). It didn't do much damage, and we got it cleaned up and put a bandage on it and I was good as new.

In all honesty, here is the best part of the story though. My youth minister felt horrible and dreaded seeing my mom. Obviously, most parents are going to have a cow if you stab their child, especially when you are a youth minister. So, he had reason to be afraid.

I told my mom about it and do you know what she said? This is not an exact quote, but here is the gist of it. "Stacey, what were you thinking? You have got to learn that you cannot let your competitiveness and pride override good judgment. The simple fact that you would not back down is evidence enough that you deserved to get a knife stuck in your foot."

Wow, what a lesson I learned that day! She made a big point that I could not blame anyone but myself, even if someone else showed poor judgment too. I can't say that I have always practiced this learning. I definitely have to work on my pride and competitiveness on a daily basis, and I would much rather blame someone else...who wouldn't? However, I still see the look on her face and the words (basically) that she said to me. I hear them after I act prideful. I hear them after I blame someone else for something. Now, I just need to work on doing something about that!

My youth minister still cringes about and takes full responsibility for this incident. Thankfully, I did not have a mother who was prone to overreacting and try to get him fired because he has gone on to do many great things at several churches. He has served as a minister and an elder and an advocate for serving God with all of your being. I respect him and his family a great deal. I think my mom talked to him, but I don't have any clue what was said. While I think it is a very bad idea to stab members of your youth group and do not advocate stabbings of any kind, being stabbed by my youth minister played a big role in growing me as a person and a Christian. (And thankfully, there probably aren't a lot of people who can say that!)

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Insult to Injury

Brian is still sad from Alabama's loss to the Arkansas Razorbacks (or pigs, as David calls them.) He came home from the game upset, depressed and in shock. Little did he know that life would get even worse for him.

You see, David was supposed to go to the game with him. However, we were having some pretty nasty storms and they were predicting a 60% chance of rain during the game in Fayetteville. Since David had just gotten over strep throat, mean ol' mom had to put her foot down and say no to the football game. Brian wasn't happy about it because he wanted to take his son that loves Alabama to his first Alabama football game, but he agreed it was best for David. David, on the other hand, was not happy about it at all. I promised him we could watch it on TV and that seemed to appease him...or so I thought.

Somewhere during the Arkansas v. Alabama game, David switched his allegiance to Arkansas. I tried to talk him out of it. I assured him that people in this family only liked Nebraska or Alabama, but it just didn't work. He said that Arkansas was his most favorite and bestest team. And ever since Saturday, he has been rubbing that in Brian's face.

Brian is heartbroken. He thought this would be something special that he would share with David. I told him to let it go for now and hopefully he would outgrow it. If not, at least there is still hope with Nathan. The problem with that is that leaves me without a Nebraska fan. Sometimes life can be so cruel!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Nick words?

I love to call my kids by all sorts of crazy names. I do it to make them laugh and to have a lot of fun with them. I have been known to call them "Guacamole", "Little Mister", "French fries" and on an on. (Yes, I KNOW it is weird!)

Last night, it was time for bed, so I said to David, "Come with me, my chick-a-dee." After I said it, I thought that chick-a-dee my sound a little girlie for my boy, so I then said, "Come on little chick-a-roo. It is bed time for you." (Not only do I come up with fun names, but I can also make them rhyme with stuff!)

David looked at me and said, "Is that one of those nick words?"

I responded with a "What???!!!" To which he replied, "You know...a nick word." I thought he might be talking about a word that our good friend Nic might use, so I asked him about that. He responded, "NOOOO! You know...the words that people use to call you by instead of using your name."

Then it hit me...nickname. I explained that it sort of was, but that nicknames ususally last longer than the names that I come up with and use only once or twice. I then asked him what he would like his nickname to be and he replied, "I think it needs to be Luke!"

Funny kid!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

So Pitiful...but Oh So Sweet

David is sick. He has strep throat and is enjoying a life of pampering right now.

When David gets sick, he always runs extremely high fevers. A 103 or 104 degree fever is nothing for this kid. So, when he came into the living room Tuesday night burning up and complaining about a sore throat, I knew that it was going to be a long couple of days.

On Tuesday night, he asked me to rub his back to help him get back to sleep. Although he REALLY wanted me to rub his back, at one point, he told me that I probably needed to stop. When I asked why, he said, "I don't want you to get sick too." I told him that I had taken care of him many times when he was sick and I was pretty sure I wouldn't get sick. He then proceeded to compliment me on my back rubbing skills telling me that I was doing a great job.

Yesterday, he continued his sweetness. At one point, he asked for a drink. When I gave it to him, he said, "Thank you for taking such good care of me mom." This was the same child, who, earlier in the week, would demand "Get me a drink now Mom!"

I think he is well on the way to his normal self today though. He has already had some pretty good scuffles with Nathan and is walking around the house with toy tools stuck all the way around the waistband of his shorts. I am going to assume that this is a sign that he is well and pretending to be a carpenter. Otherwise, his medicine he is taking is way to strong!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

A day in the life...

I was sitting in the living room working on some homework, and I hear Nathan say, "Oh NO!" This never is a good thing, so I ask, "Nathan, what's wrong?" He replied, "I'm stuck."

Now, this generally means that he has wedged his body between two very large stationary objects and he can't seem to wiggle out. That was not the case today. He walked into the living room and had one of those little potty training toilet seats around his neck. He had found it under the sink in his bathroom, and had decided it might be kind of fun to try on. Now, he was desperately trying to get it back over his head to get it off, but it just wasn't working. I finally worked it off of his head and strongly advised him NOT to put things on over his head except for shirts and pajama tops. I am sure that advisory will last all of 30 minutes...or at least until his ears quit hurting and fall back into place.

In the middle of all this, David walked up to me and handed me a piece of paper. On this paper he had written "AWiLVLEFBS". As I am reading it, he asked, "What does it say?" So, I read off the letters to him and tried to hand it back. He then says, "No mom. What word does it say?" I looked at it again and tried to make out some kind of word that he would know. I was guessing that he had tried to write a word he had seen and didn't want to spoil the fun. Finally, I gave up and said, "Why don't you tell me what it says?" He looked at me like I am nuts and said, "Mom! How am I supposed to know what word it is? I can't read!"

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Program

David's class has had a ribbon-cutting ceremony and program at school the past two days. They have been doing a construction unit where they have done a blueprint of themselves. Mrs. Tammy has turned each of these precious pages into a great keepsake book. In it, the kids have drawn pictures of themselves, made pages with handprints and footprints, and even drawn a portrait of God. David's portrait of God showed Jesus dying on the cross. The kids each got to take the book to his or her parent, cut the ribbon around the book and then show everything in the book. It was a pretty special moment and I just think that we will keep that book forever.

At the program, the kids recited some of their memory verses, sang some songs and did some chants about the months and the Fall season. It all ended with a slide show.

In the past, David has been very timid at school programs. He, as a general rule, does not participate and pretty much stands there with a deer-in-the headlight look. Well...NOT ANYMORE. David is now the life of the program. You know those kids that are loud, talk too much and sing really, really loud? That is our new David.

Since they were doing this program for two days, Brian went yesterday and I went today. Apparently yesterday, David was even a little more outgoing than he was today. At one point, when everyone was supposed to be singing Jesus Loves the Little Children but they were all singing Jesus Loves Me, David stopped them and said, "That isn't the right song!" in the most "teacherly" voice possible. I guess he then got them on the right song. When they were done, he said, "Okay, now let's sing Jesus loves me." (So much for letting the teacher be in charge!)

Today, he only made a few comments and only corrected the teacher once. Oh my!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

David's Hero

David has a new hero. It's not Superman. It's not Spiderman. Nope...this superhero is much better. David's new superhero is... (drumroll please)

Luke Tribble!

Okay, so now some of you are asking who Luke is. Luke is the quarterback of the Wildcats and one of the big kids in our youth group. In David's newfound love for football, he has taken to idolizing Luke.

Last night, we went to a Wildcat football game. On our way to pick up Brian for the game, David asked me if I knew who is favorite player was. I responded that I didn't know and asked him to tell me. He responded, "Luke, the big kid, is." Little did I know what having a favorite player meant to David; however, everyone sitting in the stands by us soon found out. David spent the whole time telling us what Luke was doing in true commentator fashion.

"Look, Luke has the ball."
"Luke kicked the ball."
"Luke took his helmet off."
"Luke is tying his shoe."

This went on the whole game...and I do mean the WHOLE game. I was thankful that Luke's grandma, aunt and uncle were sitting in front of us because anyone else may have tried to duct tape his mouth shut.

After the game, Brian took David onto the field, and he got to talk to Luke and get his picture taken with him. Luke knelt down by David and talked with him. It was a pretty special moment for our little guy.

On the way home, David talked all about Luke and asked all sorts of questions about him. At one point, he asked me what kind of car Luke drove. When I told him I didn't know, David thought it would be a good idea to go to his house and ask him. (Kind of scary, huh?)

I couldn't be happier with David's choice in a hero. Luke is a great kid. After all, how many seniors in high school would kneel down on the ground to talk to a 5 year old after shutting out another team? My guess is not many. For that and many other reasons, I am thankful that Luke is David's new favorite football player.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

What was once lost....

Has been found! I was not supposed to blog about this at the request of my husband, but since I talked nice about him last's fair.

Awhile ago, my dear husband misplaced his ring. I was pretty sure that he had lost the ring either in his office or at home. I could vividly picture him placing his ring on the counter and having the help of a little guy named Nathan to aid in the losing process.

On the way home from Nic and Mandy's wedding, he commented on losing his ring and wanting to replace it. He made the comment that it was better that he had lost his ring than if I had lost my ring. (Guys, that's not a smart thing to say to your wife (especially after she has been to a wedding and is feeling kind of sappy!) I was a little put out by his comment and reminded him of the whole "This is a symbol of our everlasting, never-ending love" line in the wedding ceremony. However, I conceded that it would cost a lot less to replace his ring.

Before our wedding, I had the jeweler inscribe the words "I will never forget". It was a special phrase that simply began because of the fact that I am quirky. Before we married, I would always start my stories with the phrase "I will never forget when..." and then proceed to tell the story. I don't know if I still do it or not, but it became one of those silly, special phrases for us. I thought it would be very fitting to engrave it on the inside of his ring and remind him that I would never forget why we got married.

In the process of talking about getting him a new ring, we talked about whether or not anything should be engraved in it. I finally told him that I had decided on the perfect thing to engrave. The first ring said, "I will never forget" and the replacement should very fittingly say, "But I guess you did!"

Lucky for him, I found the ring though. He had apparently put it on top of the armoire and it had been pushed out of view by the very short people that live in this house. I found it while I was dusting the top of the armoire today and have yet to decide if I will give it to him before or after he reads this blog!

Friday, September 01, 2006

A Great Day

Yesterday was a GREAT day. We started the day with Brian, Nathan and I dropping
David off at school and then heading to the open house for Nathan's "school". While parents wrestled two, three and four year olds during the general meeting part of the open house, we all half listened to the rules and were introduced to the teachers. Nathan was quite emphatic that he was still going to Miss Pace and Miss Jessie's class until he realized that his classroom had a horse he could ride on. He quickly forgot about Miss Pace and Miss Jessie and was ready to move on to one of the three year old classes!

After open house, Brian, Nathan and I went to the golf course. I thought this would be an easy thing because I knew Nathan would love riding in a golf cart and that would be a really neat treat for him. would have been great except he quickly figured out how to unlock the parking break and we couldn't leave him alone in the cart. We debated about playing and I was trying to convince Brian to play and we could just ride along with him, but Brian felt bad about doing that. So, we took turns playing the holes, and I FINALLY got to try out my new golf clubs that Brian got me for my birthday. I had so much fun and have definitely found a new hobby.

After golfing, we ate lunch, ran a few errands and then went and picked up David from school. We had planned on going to a football game of some of the kids in the youth group, but Nathan fell asleep on the way home. So, instead of all 4 of us going, David and Brian went to the game and had some father-son bonding time. They left the game to come get me and Nathan, and then the boys all dropped me off to teach my Thursday night class. They then went and had some guy time together, including a stop at the infamous Frozen D's for ice cream.

The boys went to sleep happy and pleased to have spent so much time with their Daddy. They love being with him and he loves being with them. I am thankful that the boys have such a good daddy and I am married to such a good friend. We all enjoyed being together and spending the day as a family. I hope that lasts forever!