Thursday, June 26, 2008

Anniversary Legacy

Today we're celebrating Mom & Dad's 32nd Wedding Anniversary. We're celebrating a real legacy of "loving until it hurts" (as Mother Teresa so well put it). Although they are not living the charmed retirement they always probably dreamed of, they are accomplishing in these years something far more beautiful. They are living a supernatural love, a love that transcends the most painful realities, a love that sees someone's worth not in what they can "do" but in "who they are"...a love that gets up and perseveres after countless falls, a love that is not about self satisfaction but about self gift, a love that reaches for joy in the midst of nightmares & humiliations. They are living the great paradox of the Cross...REAL LOVE. Thank you Mom and Dad. I'm sure the effects of your legacy will be eternal.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Gabe!!!

Yesterday we celebrated Gabriel's 3rd Birthday here in Ocean City, NJ. (He's not flawlessly potty trained but we're happy to say he's in big boy "Thomas" underwear and I will not buy another package of size 4 diapers until Monica needs them). Yesterday he enjoyed a vanilla cake with a yellow truck on top, a birthday balloon with a red fire engine and as the gift his mother gave into her lesser instincts and purchased a "Little Einsteins Rocket Ride On." If you've never seen the show, you'll never get it, but it has basically rocked his world! What happened to the snobby Montessori mother who wouldn't buy any toy unless it was made with nontoxic painted wood? I don't know.
Gabe is such a joy of a creature and I am ever so thankful for my "surprise" second child. I don't know where I'd be without him. He enters into life with gusto. No matter what kind of mood I'm in, he'll always make me laugh. He has the eyes of his grandfather Fred with the twinkle that melts hearts. Thank you God for Gabe. I am humbled that he is my son.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Oh what a day

So we're in the midst of potty training Gabe. My method includes letting them go pantless for a few days and not leaving the house until the habit has been set. It's painful but quick with lasting results. (Read- I don't want to be changing his diapers on the beach next week!). Se he's running around pantless with his favorite little sweater on.
So of course on a day like this a Jehovah's Witness decides to knock confidently on my door. His first glimpse of our home was of a half naked toddler screaming because he wanted to open the door and his frazzled mother just knew it was not Daddy on the other side. He then glimpses a mother (me) in the heat of battle with a willful child. He then proceeds to try to let himself in. During the moment I decided to cut to he chase:
As he hands me a book:
Me: Um, what religion are you? (frustrated children screaming in the background and battling for the door)
JW: Jehovah's Witness (with a kind smile)
Me: Well I'm Catholic Christian. Please just look into the Catholic Church. It's the truth. (toddlers still screaming).
JW politely but swiftly exits. It may have been the fastest exit of any JW from an Old Town doorstep.
Oh Boy, that poor man didn't know what he was getting into when he knocked on my door. How do you explain to someone desperately trying to convert you that you're not interested but you appreciate the zeal? That frankly right now I'm living my faith in God and my Church through attempting to be a good woman, wife and mother? That I'd love to have a cup of tea and talk philosophy and theology with the guy but right now I'm potty training an almost 3 year old? That I do struggle with phases of doubts, despair and depression but every day I make a leap of faith and strive for hope that I'm on the right track? That the only true peace I've had in my life has come from overcoming stupid feelings and opinions and being open to conversion on a daily basis. That I don't believe I'm saved any more than he is because I'm not God but he should really just try a visit to the Church across the street if he's seeking more. He may just find Someone there.
Oh well. Poor guy. I think we just startled him...

Monday, June 16, 2008

Back from Sandy Cove

We're back from the infamous Sandy Cove Family reunion on the Chesapeake. It's way too late for me to be thinking coherently but I had to check in to let you all know that I haven't stopped blogging. Even though it feels like talking to an empty room I'll keep it up because I realized over the reunion that a few relatives we're reading this but not commenting- Stinkers! Just kidding. But please do give me some love if you check this once or twice. It was a good time. The last time we did this was before babies and before Dad's injury so this time was a whole new experience. I'd venture to say that it was so much more meaningful this time around. The kids fell in love with their "cousins" (cousins once removed?- I can't figure that out). Every time I thought I had them tracked down one would join another pack of boys riding scooters wildly down a path. Or I'd find one among the girls walking hand in hand down the halls. And Monica was held by everyone. So overall it was a good time had by all as we attempted to converse among the chaos. Dad and Mom enjoyed a gorgeous view and Dad led everyone in Ravioli for old times sake. Luis and Matt even starred in an edgy skit spoofing Greg and Mark Shultz getting lost on the road- good one Luis! More about this all tomorrow when I can think more clearly. Ah, another recovery day awaits me. Perhaps I'll blog once or twice if the kids let me...

Monday, June 9, 2008

Happy Birthday John!

One day late- but I needed to post a big Happy Birthday to John- 20 years- wow. We had such a nice time meeting Mom, Jen, Matt, Lydia and Uncle John downtown for a brunch at the Darlington House (where John is spending some Summer working hours). Boy, was it good- and the decor hit a chord in me being the design addict that I am. Anyhow, Happy Birthday to my fun smart youngest brother. Hey John- when are you going to take us up on the dinner after you redeem your massage gift certificate? It's about time I think!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Good Bye Sandboat

Goodbye Sandboat. You've served us well since we purchased you for John Paul and Gabe's birthdays in 2006. Now we're happy to hand you off to the nice family I found on craig's list who cannot afford one for themselves. Good bye sand...I never want to see you in my backyard or house again!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

More memories

John Paul savors grilled lamb and eats it like a barbarian. Monica can't get enough of swings. And Gabriel LOVES to "mow" the lawn. Someday when we have a lawn and he's old enough, he totally get's that job. If he objects we can just show him this picture.

In case anyone was wondering

Uncle Tom can give a great haircut. And doesn't Auntie Cath look so cute in a hat?!