Friday, November 27, 2009

Meet Nana

One of the best things about living in San Diego is our neighbors. All of them are nice, but two doors down live Tala and Damien (see previous post) and they are honestly the most ideal neighbors I could dream of having. Damien is Nathan's age and they are in the same class at school and Tala is just a wonderful and amazing friend. We carpool to school, borrow eggs and potatoes from each other constantly, the boys love each other, they are just wonderful.

Tala came here from Iran when she was 15-all alone. But that is a whole other story. A few years after coming here she met Sylvia-a wonderful woman who wanted to adopt her. Tala was already 18, so legally she could not be adopted, but Sylvia adopted her in spirit.

So, 17 years later Sylvia is now "Nana" to Damien (and to many more people-children of all ages). My boys call her Nana, actually, I usually call her Nana too even though I could call her Sylvia. The name Nana just fits so well. She is the most Christlike of people-always giving, always loving. We adore her. She has a "cookie ministry" complete with a Cookie Fairy outfit-yes you read that right-and business cards that she leaves for people indicating that she is spreading God's love through cookies. Monthly she dresses up in her Cookie Fairy costume and goes to a Mexican orphanage armed with diapers, food, money and of course, cookies, to entertain the kids and make this world just a little bit better.

We love Nana. Two weeks ago-on Veteran's day-Nana took me and my 3 boys along with Damien to the Corvette Diner in San Diego. We skipped to the glow in the dark table (because we were instructed to do so by the host) where we watched waitresses dance in the aisles (and Nana-though she is 60 sat in our booth trying to dance along), drank shakes as tall as Jack's head and ate big old burger's and fries, saw people get their hair decorated with straws and then, to cap it all off, we got to play arcade games and win prizes. The boys had a ball.

We love Nana-everyone loves Nana. We are so glad to have Nana as a part of our lives. Meet Nana:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

What's That?

As long as I am blogging, here is one more long overdue post.

Before Halloween one day I told my neighbor Tala that her son Damien could come over that evening if he wanted to help us carve pumpkins. She said "what's that?" Seriously?! She has never carved a pumpkin. Mind you she is from Iran, but she has lived here for like 20 years. I couldn't believe it!

So Damien came over and experienced his first ever pumpkin carving. He had a blast!


I need to get this recorded because it is just so sweet.

Several times lately Dallen has shown what we think is amazing compassion or awareness of others for a child of just 22 months.

One day I was sitting at the kitchen table next to him while he ate breakfast. Daddy was in the kitchen and all of a sudden Dallen went to him saying "mama, fweeeeeeeen." (Translation-mama drink.) Josh looked at him strangely because, first of all, Josh is daddy, not mama, and second, Dallen already had a drink. Josh tried to explain this to him but he kept asking. I said to Josh, "I think he might be wanting to give me a drink" so Josh filled up a cup for me and handed it to Dallen, who immediately grinned and turned to me with the drink and handed it to me.

Josh and I looked at each other rather surprised. How does a 22 month old notice that mom doesn't have something that he thinks she might want? I know it is a small thing, but at that age I think it is huge. That seems abnormal for a kid this age. But he just keeps doing it. Today he got me a bowl of cereal and brought it to me, he has done several things for Josh.

I have to say, I just love this little Dallen guy. Seeing this kind of love in a child this small makes me excited to see what he is like as he gets older. Who wouldn't love this kid?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Heal me or Kill me?

As I mentioned a couple of months ago, Josh suprised me with a plane ticket to Madison to see my friends for a few days. Last night I got home from my trip.

Before I went Josh and I debated what the trip would do to me...I thought it might kill me. To see all those wonderful and amazing friends and then to have to walk away and leave them again. I didn't know if I could do that.

Josh thought it would heal me. He thought that I would go there, enjoy seeing my friends but somehow realize that I had been idealizing it in my mind and so I would be healed-my little broken missing Madison heart would be healed.

I thought about this a lot during the time that I was there. How would I feel when I left? Would my heart break again or would it be healed? I think in the end the trip did neither. One thing is certain-I didn't come to the conclusion that I had been idealizing the place. No-everything was just as I remembered it. Warm and friendly and fun. Though I was reminded that with the amazing friendship and comradery there comes germs. When you spend everyday among friends and their kids everyone gets sick-all together. There was a massive outbreak of hand, foot and mouth years ago. I don't miss that.

And it was glorious to see these friends. I literally saw probably 50-60 friends. People I love and treasure. And yes, it was hard to walk away from them again. Very hard. And I still miss them and always will. But I guess I realized that they are still my friends, even if we live 2000 miles apart. And that there are benefits to living in San Diego-like wonderful weather, lots to do, a great school, etc.

So in the end it neither killed me or healed me. It was just plain fun!

2 playgroups, a wild and crazy (and I do mean wild and crazy-I haven't laughed so hard since the last time I went a year and a half ago) book club, a trip to New Moon with 30, yes, I said 30 ladies (see picture below) followed by a late night trip to a wing's joint, another quieter girl's night out, staying with a fun friend, dinner with a cute family, SYTYCD with two pals, Babcock ice cream, Chin's Asian, and some down time to relax. Oh, and church on Sunday. It was wonderful. I love you Madison friends-you are amazing people.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

As requested

Finally, two weeks later-full body shots of my dinos:

The Snood-osaurus:
Tyrannosaurus Jack: (this is right about the moment that we discovered the Swine Flu fever that we thought he was free of was back.)

And all three little monsters: