07 January 2009

I'm a slacker...

Yes, it's been way too long since I posted. But I wanted to share the following today. I emailed this to many of you as well but I was so moved by it, I wanted to share with as many people as possible. Warning - it's a tearjerker.

All,

One of the little boys that Maddie and Caleb used to be in daycare with was diagnosed with neuroblastoma a couple years ago. We follow his progress on the care pages website, and along the way have picked up the pages of other kids that we follow as well. The post that follows is copied directly from the carepage of a little boy named Coleman. We never knew him, but Corey (Maddie and Caleb’s friend) did. I wanted to share this post from his parents with all of you.

I think it speaks for itself. It certainly put things in perspective for me.

If you’re interested in following Corey’s progress his carepage is: http://www.carepages.com/carepages/coreynickell He has relapsed and can use all the prayers he can get.

Tears filled with Hope
Posted 12 hours ago
Today the world may have cried a river of tears for a little boy’s life that ended way too soon, but we believe Heaven is REJOYCING over Coleman’s job well done.
Coleman was an amazing child of God and we were so honored to be chosen as his parents.
He left this world at 10:45 last night- he fought HARD until the very end, not wanting to give up, but finally letting go. He was a warrior and a hero our hearts will forever miss. We had the most glorious five years together- a gift we will never forget.

A quick story. :)
One day Coleman heard someone say they were mad at God. He didn’t say a word, but later came to me with this complete look of disbelief on his face and asked, “mommy? did you hear them say they were mad at GOD? WHY would they say that?” He couldn’t even fathom the thought. Then he raised his little eyebrows and said, “well, I hope they don’t say that in PUB-WIC (public)!” and walked away. He knew there were some things he could not change, but HIS faith never wavered.
Lots of people have mentioned their anger toward God …how can He let this happen when so many people have been praying for Coleman? Why didn’t he answer our prayers?
I just can’t be angry at Our God who sent Coleman to us in the first place. Coleman was a child of God, WE were chosen to be his parents- and how blessed we were. Maybe my feelings will change, but like Coleman, I can’t imagine being angry at God. Would we have loved to have had more time with Coleman? YES! I want him back right now, but I know that’s the selfish part of me talking. I know I will hurt more than I can ever imagine in missing him…and I know I will have MANY days of heartache and anger, but my anger is over the fact we live in a world where we can do so much, but still do not have a cure for this horrific disease. Children are paying the price for that. More on that will come-
I guess what I’m saying is I know for a fact, Coleman would NOT want us to be mad at God. He taught us so much in his time here. His lessons will go on for a very long time. He knew where he came from and he knew where he was going. My heart aches for more time, but I’m SO thankful for the time we got with him, and we know we WILL be with him again. God doesn’t always answer our prayers in the way we want him to…HIS ways are not ours, and that’s hard to accept, but true. It doesn’t mean I don’t question it- it’s hard to understand, but one day we WILL know.
Many people have asked how Caden is doing. Now that’s a long story, but we have assured him that we love him. He is dealing the best way he can- just like us.
I turned my desk Praying Parent calendar today, and thought I’d share what it said…“We are dependent on God to enable us to raise our child properly, and He will see to it that our child’s life is blessed. One thing I have learned is that I should not try to force my own will on my child in prayer. I have found it is better to pray more along the lines of “Lord show me how to pray for this child. Help me to raise him Your way, and may Your will be done in his life.”I believe God’s will was done through Coleman. I know it.
For those inquiring:We will celebrate Coleman’s life on Saturday, Jan. 10th at 10:30 a.m. at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in Callender. Visitation will also be at the church on Friday the 9th after 4:00p.m.
Also for those inquiring- Instead of flowers, we’d love donations in Coleman's memory made to either:The Hospice House of Fort Dodge, IowaThe Ronald McDonald House of Iowa Cityor curesearch.org
We’d like to thank EVERYONE who has helped our family along this journey the past two and a half years. There are thousands to thank. We will never be able to explain how much we appreciate the support for our Team. Our carepage family is the BEST!To the hospice house- you will always have a special place in our hearts. You made the most difficult time of our lives one filled with love. Nadine and your staff, God bless you. I know Coleman would like us to thank you as well for making his last days as comfortable as possible for him- and for us all.
God bless you baby. We love you so much.Coleman said long ago, "some day I won't need NO more meds or pokes, wight mommy?”No more sweetie. You are free.

One more story to share…thanks again Nadine.The Parable of the Twins-

Once upon a time, twin boys were conceived in the same womb. Weeks passed and the twins developed. As their awareness grew, they laughed for joy, “isn’t it great that we were conceived? Isn’t it great to be alive?”Together the twins explored their world. When they found their mother’s cord that gave them life, they sang for joy, “how great is our Mother’s love, that she shares her own life with us!”As weeks stretched into months, the twins noticed how much each was changing. “what does it mean?” asked the one. “It means that our stay in this world is drawing to an end, said the other. “But I don’t want to go”, said the other, “but maybe there is life after birth.” But how can there be?” responded the other one. “We will shed our life cord, and how is life possible without it? Besides, we have seen evidence that others were here before us and none of them have returned to tell us that there is life after birth. No, this is the end.”And so the one fell into deep despair, saying, “If conception ends in birth, what is the purpose of life in the womb? It is meaningless! Maybe there is no mother after all?” “But there has to be,” protested the other. “How else did we get here? How do we remain alive?”How you ever seen our mother?” said one. “Maybe she lives only in our minds. Maybe we made her up because the idea made us feel good?”And so the last days in the womb were filled with deep questioning and fear. Finally, the moment of birth arrived. When the twins had passed from their world, they opened their eyes and cried for joy. For what they saw exceeded their fondest dreams.
Author Unknown

06 November 2008

Things....

Guess what today is? Or would have been? My wedding anniversary, were I still married. Guess what the great news about that is? I FORGOT. Until someone reminded me earlier... I forgot. When I look back to where I was on this day last year, I am eternally grateful that I have come so far in a year. I know with absolute certainty that where I am today is where I'm supposed to be and where I should have been all along. So - today, on what would have been my ninth wedding anniversary, I want to say to all my family and friends - THANK YOU. Thank you for everything you have done for me always and especially over the last year. Thank you for your love and support. Thanks for being there always. I love you all. You are all a huge part of the reason that today I am HAPPIER than I've ever been.

Guess what else? I got my Starbucks Gold card today. V. happy.

It's a good day. Life is good.

01 November 2008

Video

Cobby learned this song in school:

There were five little monkeys sitting in a tree...
teasing the alligator, "You can't catch me!"
Along came the alligator, quiet as can be,
and he SNAPPED that monkey right out of that tree!

Here he is singing it, replacing Matt for the monkeys...

video

Halloween



A few pics of the big day.... The kids got more candy that I can believe. We trick or treated for a full two hours.
So at Cobby's Halloween Party yesterday, the teachers were trying to get the kids energy out... They put on some music for the kids to dance. Cobby (in the red dragon costume) just stands there for about ten seconds before finally getting his groove on. I thought it was really funny. Check out the video:

video

More pics on our photo page: http://lizzyh.shutterfly.com/

27 October 2008

Why did the chicken cross the road?

This is an email I got, but I thought it was so funny it was worth a post....

Why did the chicken cross the road?

BARACK OBAMA: The chicken crossed the road because it was time for change! The chicken wanted change!

JOHN MC CAIN: My friends; that chicken crossed the road because he recognized the need to engage in cooperation and dialogue with all the chickens on the other side of the road.

HILLARY CLINTON: When I was First Lady, I personally helped that little chicken to cross the road. This experience makes me uniquely qualified to ensure right from day one that every chicken in this country gets the chance it deserves to cross the road. But then, this really isn't about me.

GEORGE W. BUSH: We don't really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just want to know if the chicken is on our side of the road, or not. The chicken is either against us, or for us. There is no middle ground here.

DICK CHENEY: Where's my gun?

COLIN POWELL: Now to the left of the screen, you can clearly see the satellite image of the chicken crossing the road.

AL GORE: I invented the chicken.

AL SHARPTON: Why are all the chickens white? We need some black chickens.

DR. PHIL: The problem we have here is that this chicken won't realize that he must first deal with the problem on this side of the road before it goes after the problem on the other side of the road. What we need to do is help him realize how stupid he's acting by not taking on his current problems before adding new problems.

OPRAH: Well, I understand that the chicken is having problems, which is why he wants to cross this road so bad. So instead of having the chicken learn from his mistakes and take falls, which is a part of life, I'm going to give this chicken a car so that he can just drive across the road and not live his life like the rest of the chickens.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN: We have reason to believe there is a chicken, but we have not yet been allowed to have access to the other side of the road.

NANCY GRACE: That chicken crossed the road because he's guilty! You can see it in his eyes and the way he walks.

PAT BUCHANAN: To steal the job of a decent, hardworking American.

MARTHA STEWART: No one called me to warn me which way that chicken was going. I had a standing order at the Farmer's Market to sell my eggs when the price dropped to a certain level. No little bird gave me any insider information.

ERNEST HEMINGWAY: To die in the rain, alone.

GRANDPA: In my day we didn't ask why the chicken crossed the road. Somebody told us the chicken crossed the road, and that was good enough.

BARBARA WALTERS: Isn't that interesting? In a few moments, we will be listening to the chicken tell, for the first time, the heart warming story of how it experienced a serious case of molting, and went on to accomplish its lifelong dream of crossing the road.

ARISTOTLE: It is the nature of chickens to cross the road.

JOHN LENNON: Imagine all the chickens in the world crossing roads together, in peace.

BILL GATES: I have just released eChicken2008, which will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents, and balance your checkbook. Internet Explorer is an integral part of eChicken2008. This new platform is much more stable and will never reboot.

ALBERT EINSTEIN: Did the chicken really cross the road, or did the road move beneath the chicken?

COLONEL SANDERS: Did I miss one?

20 October 2008

I'm so happy I might cry...

So last week I was reading my Washington Post magazine, and it was the issue with the best cheap eats in the city. You know me, I love good food, and even better if I do not have to cook it!

Rewind a little bit to my years in England... Back then my favorite "fast food" place was a South African chicken joint called Nandos. I missed it so much when I moved back that I even had friends buy my their sauce and send it to me so I could try to re-create it at home... (A failed attempt, I should note...) Their main ingredient is some kind of South African spice or chili pepper (not sure exactly which) called Peri-Peri. So for the last six and half years I have had to live without delicious Nandos... It has severely traumatized me.

But oh happy day, cause GUESS WHAT? According to my Post magazine, one just opened in DC! The first in the US apparently, and it's in Penn Quarter / Chinatown, which is in NW and close-ish to my work! I can cruise down there at lunch on a good day and be back in just over an hour. You can bet I'll be making the trek just as soon as I can find the time. Check back later this week for my own personal reviews... I can't wait. I literally was so happy I almost cried tears of joy.

http://www.nandosperiperi.com/index.cfm

12 October 2008

Pumpkin Patch








Here are a few photos from our trip to the pumpkin patch yesterday... For more, check out our photo page...