Thursday, August 9, 2012

Goal Post

Skater Girl was asked to come up with some goals for the remainder of the year. She sat at the kitchen table writing out her bullet points last night, but abandoned the task to put away laundry. The laundry led her to the pantry for a snack. Then she was distracted by the cat. Finally, it was bedtime. With her tucked into bed, I looked over the list.
The change in handwriting does not indicate a psychotic break on the part of Skater Girl. Her daddy just added his suggestions to the list. Skater Girl drew the line this morning along with an unpleasant notation for her sister to resist adding to the list. She sat muttering while recreating the list of goals sans ninjas and kitten rescue. It seemed like a good idea to point out that the additions were in the Mister's handwriting before things went any further. This list will not be presented to the skate coaches, but they would probably appreciate it.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Tidbits: Burn

It's running been running well over 100 degree temperatures all week. 105, 106, hundred-and-no-way-the-thermometer-is-right... These are the sorts of days when the whole family wants to go watch Skater Girl practice because the rink is last cool place in town. There is no ice time on Sunday afternoons, so everyone had to make other plans today.
  • Skater Girl and several other kiddoes from the rink gathered for a pool party this afternoon. The high points of the day included the hostess's two big, friendly Labradors joining the girls in the water and giant cupcakes. The skaters were every bit as happy in the water as they are on the ice.
  • Middle Child headed off to the lake with Perfect for a day out in the boat after church. They cruised the lake, went tubing, and hung out with Perfect's family. The sun's going down, and they're only just now heading home.
  • Only one daughter took sunscreen with her. *sigh*

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


The Boy left our home in 2009 due to some extremely poor choices. In the years since, there is often a daily struggle to love him. Not to love the him I wanted him to be, but to just love him on an entirely "as is" basis. (A mother's love is unconditional, but that doesn't mean a mother's heart gives up hope for better conditions.) Through a roller coaster of ups and downs, there has remained a carefully nurtured spark of hope that our family would one day be whole and our son would be a man of integrity following Christ. Time after time, the Boy has heaped sand on the embers of our hope. The mister and I respond by unearthing that glowing coal even though we burn our fingers trying to salvage our hope.
The Boy has been living in a temporary housing situation for the past few months less than an hour from home. The whole family made visits and attended meetings in preparation for his transition home in the Spring. The Boy made one plan after another for his imminent future; yet, none of his plans involved coming home as the season changed. Unfortunately, his plans kept falling through. Finally, he reached the point where it was a choice between the still open door of our home or foster care. And he did not choose home. It was an appalling, heartbreaking, shocking day.
Our current Bible study is over 1 Corinthians, and in the way of such things, exactly the right words were given. The week's study focused on Chapter 13 (here from the NASB):
13 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; [b] bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails...
How does love never fail when the one loved rejects those who love him? That question is the heart of the sorrow that the Boy desires to remain apart. The particular bit about love never failing does not refer to our failure to love our son. It translates to not collapsing. We have not collapsed, but have held firm in our love for our challenge child. Christ died on a cross for those who will accept the sacrifice, but He didn't avoid the cross though there are those who will reject His sacrifice. That is the essence of our relationship with our son. We will make sacrifices for him, and we will love him despite rejection because our love refuses to fail.


Middle Child qualified for her driver's permit on July 20th. That date coincided with a visit from the in-laws, so there was a full audience on hand for Middle Child's first attempt at driving. (The Mister's Pop opted out saying he would remain behind at the house, "... in case our student driver takes out the whole family." That may be prudence, or perhaps just just a lack of confidence.) The Mister's Mama and I drove over in the mom-mobile while the Mister, Perfect, and Middle Child piled into what will be the Kids' Car for the short trip to the high school parking lot.

The Mister has been looking forward to this as much as Middle Child has over the past weeks.
I parked away from where my baby girl was proudly climbing behind the wheel. (See it way over to Middle Child's right? There was no need to put the current mom-mobile in harm's way. Maybe it should have just stayed home with the Mister's Pop...) The MIL and I waved as the other vehicle slowly pulled away. Snapping a few photos, we observed the progress across the parking lot punctuated by brake lights and somewhat jerky acceleration. Whatever her initial technical ability, Middle Child was driving! There was an added degree of difficulty with other inexperienced drivers slowly cruising the school parking lot. Fortunately, none of them pushed the speedometer much over about 10 mph; though, 10 looks pretty fast when the first of one's children to drive is behind the wheel.

This particular rite of passage arrives at just the right time. It doesn't feel too soon, but neither does it seem like our girl was held back. The permit will allow over eighteen months of driving experience. This is her final week of the required forty-plus hours of classroom instruction, and the practice drive times are accumulating quickly with one or two a week with the Mister or I and one per week in the drivers' education car. The initial drive times have gone well, and Middle Child is shaping up to be a good driver. She takes instruction well, and she is generally careful without being frightened or overly cautious. In a blink she'll be chauffeuring the family around town.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Skate Mom

We've become acquainted with the parents of two of the littlest skaters from the rink. The Dad is a hockey guy, and the Mom is a real skater. (Real skaters can do jumps and spins. They know the names of the stuff they do, too. Most of our rink's Skate Moms are not real skaters. We generally are content to live vicariously through our children in this instance.) Last week they entered a Family Spotlight event at the Worlds competition that had a certain silliness with Dad playing the role of Darth Skater and Mom as a floral-robed Jedi Master with her two wildly careening and spinning little floral-patterned Paduwan learners. It was a cute piece relating to the reality that hockey and figure skaters do not always play well with one another that ended happily with Darth Skater gliding off hand in hand with the uber-girly figure skating Jedis as a Star Wars theme played. Those little skater girls will forever have the very cool memory of skating with their parents at the World Team Championships.

Since skating is a central part of our own Skater Girl's world, the mister and I are joining her on the ice. We will not be joining her in a competition setting. She will be skating with her friends in their advanced weekly workshop while Mom and Dad will be joining the Adult Intro to Skating class further down the ice surface. Okay, we'll get on the ice half way through the first class. Or maybe the second class. Either way, it's a step toward better understanding what our girl does almost every day.

Our class registration includes open skate passes so we can join the lovies when they go to skate for fun. Best of all, the kids seem genuinely pleased by our plan to join them rather than continuing to watch from our rink side seats. The mister will likely match Middle Child's skill level in a reasonable amount of time, and they will lap me over and over again while Skater Girl does little spins around them in turn. That's acceptable. This mama just wants to leave the sideline seats and join in the fun- even if the fun is really, really slow.  I suspect Darth Skater and Jedi Master Mom will be tickled to learn that they served as an inspiration to finally sign up for that introductory class, too.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Worlds 2012 Solo Events

Skater Girl and Primary Coach Alyssa displaying Monday's medals

Skater Girl competed in three solo events Monday at the ISI World Team Championships. She skated well in a tough group for her footwork, but was disappointed with her fifth place finish. Her second event was her program, and she skated beautifully. The judges rewarded her with a first place finish. (Eeeeee!) The final event in her 10 hour day at the rink was her compulsory. The elements she skated were good enough for a second place medal. (See video.) Her coaches, the mister, and I were all very proud of her effort and performance. It was a long day, but a good one!

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Skater Girl participated in an exhibition at the rink yesterday. She skated her "Incantation" program in preparation for Worlds competition this coming week in Dallas. She's come a long way from her first class a little over a year-and-a-half ago.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


The mister drove a Mustang just this color in high school. That tidbit made a sale a pretty sure bet for the car salesman once he overheard it. He has a thing for Mustangs, but they're not really family vehicles. The lovies and I have been plotting, planning, and dreaming about surprising the mister with his wished-for Mustang in time for his 40th birthday. We are a smidge early, but he seems okay with the timing.
What might be a little less brilliant is the addition of this fun-to-drive woo-woo car to the driveway (and our insurance) just in time for Middle Child to start driving. In fact, her first driver's education class fell on Monday. The additional hours of required driving practice outside of the class fall to her daddy because her mama is not emotionally equipped for teaching young people to operate motor vehicles while retaining any level of sanity. The mister is going to make those driving session much cooler than if Middle Child had to learn in a mom-mobile. He's looking forward to sharing the rite of passage with our girl, and he's entirely welcome to it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Where It Went

Somehow days and weeks escape despite the intent to post a little update, story, picture, anecdote... yeah. So. There's all sorts of stuff that was intended for remembrance which will never be known because someone failed to post to the blog that has replaced those messy and time-consuming scrapbooks...

Gentle Reader didn't really miss that much, though.

Unless you wanted a play-by-play of the hours spent applying one sparkly little crystal at a time to Skater Girl's competition dresses? (A picture is worth a thousand words- and you'll be better off. Really.) It's pretty, though. And so shiny. Anywho. Placing each little stone... Oh. Hey. It's just like those scrapbooks...

Thursday, June 7, 2012


Ow. Skater Girl had five teeth extracted yesterday because there's not room in her mouth for all of them to fit. Eighteen hours later, our girl was back in the chair with her mouth wide open. Those newly spacious gums have been joined by brackets and wires on the remaining teeth. The application of full braces hard on the heels of the extractions were not originally scheduled quite so close together. The appointments were supposed to be a couple of weeks apart, but the orthodontist's computer somehow had the day of the braces installation listed as, "Available," though that was untrue since the date fell in the midst of the doctor's vacation. (Oops.) With skating competitions in June and July, the decision was made to cram the treatment into a whopping day-and-a-half.
This is good for skating, even though it means Wednesday afternoon through Sunday off the ice. (The dentist said so yesterday.) Even with explanations of dry socket (yuck), Skater Girl was already attempting to bargain herself back into the rink tomorrow. Her theory is that it would surely be okay to skate as long as she doesn't jump or spin. Eesh. Fortunately, her new skates came in yesterday (8 weeks to manufacture the boots!), and she will have her first fitting tonight. That may satisfy her jones for all things skating-related at least for today, and the promise of next week's accelerated training schedule with a competition on the 17th should cover the following week.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Web MD

Middle Child has a complaint. She's been directed by Dr. Mom to take ibuprofen, ice, and rest. Dr. Mom also suggested a consult with the orthopedic doctor and physical therapist. Despite all that disregarded advice, Middle Child used the internet to self-diagnose herself with shin splints. She shared the diagnosis with her mother last night explaining that shin splints could lead to stress fractures. She also proceeded to list the appropriate treatments for those with shin splints: ice, rest, NSAIDs, evaluation by a physician, and possibly physical therapy. Really?!

Monday, May 21, 2012


Mmmkay. Middle Child was perhaps unaware that her romance with Perfect was a blog topic. As she climbed into the mom-mobile after school today, she stated, "K. and I spent most of the period in Spanish today reading your blog." Uh-oh. Knowing I was busted, but choosing to avoid acknowledgment for a few more minutes, I asked her what they thought. They thought it was funny that Middle Child's mom googled, "pasty", with unfortunate results. She also observed that it was interesting to see how a parent's perspective is different from one's own  point-of-view. Then she let her poor mother off the hook by commenting on the selection of Perfect's pseudonym with a grin.