April 29, 2010

The Blessings Overwhelm Me

* I'm sorry, but it's a little Top Gun to me, this picture.

There are moments when I look over at him and can't believe he's the same guy that I fell in love with so many months ago. Not that I even knew it at the time, but I was so smitten with him.

I work with B and see him every day. I remember the day he started at our company. I remember adding his picture to the New Hire slide of our townhall presentation that month. I'd see him in the halls and I was mesmerized. Genuinely nice, a KILLER smile, and eyes that made me feel like I'd been hit with electricity when he looked back at me.

Over those first few weeks I found reasons to be out and about in the plant, accepting new projects that would require his assistance. We talked. Joked. Flirted. Actually, I wasn't sure we were flirting; my attenae had been "off" for so long that it took me a bit to realize it was the real thing. This is the part where he would roll his eyes if I were telling you this over dinner and a glass of Pinot Noir. He would add that he was finding reasons to be near me and flirting so hard he nearly sprained something. He would also tell you that I was paying him very little attention.

It was over MONTHS that I went into my friend's office and said, "Does this sound like flirting?" I'd rehash a conversation or a smile and she'd just shake her head. "He likes you back, Rachel." But I was too bullheaded to believe it. Really? I even went so far as to date someone else during that time, so sure that B was just a friend. Or at least dating someone else, I mean, how on earth could a guy that amazing be single? Because he was patiently waiting for me, going home at night to tell his friends about the girl in the office.

Silently, I liked him. More than that, honestly. It seemed crazy, but I couldn't stop thinking about him. Being around him made me feel incredible. He was always so supportive, so genuine. I fell in love with every ounce of his character. And I always left his side all swoony and gooey. So I prayed about him. Often. And every day we got closer. To hear B tell his side of those gooey weeks when we were dating without realizing it would stop your heart, its so sweet.

It was sometime around the middle of January that I finally woke up and looked around and realized he was smiling back at me. It took me long enough. As soon as I knew, I KNEW. From then on, we have been US. Plain and simple. Both of us, all in.

I'm rambling. What was my point? Oh yes.

Sometimes I look at him in awe. Look over at him on the couch or in the truck and literally can't believe he is that guy I've been searching for. That same guy that had me mesmerized for months. Holy shit, he's really real. He really was searching for me, too... waiting until our time was right. And he loves me back... like, a lot!

And then I think of how easy it would have been for both of us to be too afraid to take that first step... each of us having survived things in our pasts. But we could both feel the ember burning all those months ago, low and warm and REAL. So we put the fear aside, reached for one another's hands, and went after the happy. All in. Balls to the wall. Go big or go home.
I can't let myself dwell in awe, though. My breath catches in my throat and the blessings overwhelm me. It's usually then that he catches me looking at him and smiles. And I faint.

Love is an amazing, amazing thing. Just something I was thinking this morning. Hope you're all feeling blessings overwhelm you, too.

April 28, 2010

She Fits 6 Peeps, Yo

(Don't ask me what's up with the 'yo'; I couldn't tell you. But it's impossible to quit it so don't ask me to.)

I love my truck. She kicks ass. Sure, she eats a lot of gas and yes, she isn't the most ecologically-minded gal out there... but she's what I've got and have to keep her for quite some time. So I love her.

My point?

One night several weeks ago, back when B was still Tomato Soup on the ole' blog, we were texting. We were both talking about how one day we blinked, and we were us. Both of us a package deal - me with my 3, and him with his 1. That made 6.

Then came the cutest text from him: "We might have to get a Suburban at this rate. We are 6 peeps! That rules!"

And my return text: "Babe, I've got it covered. My truck seats 8." Who knew that this entire time, perhaps WE are the reason I needed that big ass truck in the first place? Just here, in South Dakota and all...

Needless to say, he hadn't realized. He was excited and lamented on for several more texts about how that was yet another reason to love me. Or something. (Bucket queue right there.) Sorry. Guess you had to be there.

My subpoint?

This past weekend, we 6 went to the circus in my truck. We all fit quite nicely. We all fit quite nicely. (Mmm...Love that.) The entire time we drove back and forth to the circus, then to the grocery store, I kept thinking of that night we texted. I thought about how full my heart and our lives are now: of this man I love, of all four of the amazing children in my truck, and I gave thanks to God.

We are so blessed.

I love my truck. She fits 6 peeps, yo.


Last night I helped Mabel potty before bedtime. As usual, she took her ever-lovin' time sitting there, hop-flopping her pudgy legs and pointing at her (still purple) toenails. She told me about her day, about her "fwends" Quinton and Awex (Alex). She talked about how much she loved her princess nightgown. It was "pitty". She told me 111 times that she was not done going potty.

The boys were already tucked into their beds. I was anxious to relax after working all day, walking miles through the plant, and mowing the grass. But she looked so dang cute I could eat her with marshmallow fluff.

I knelt in front of her and put my hands on her little knees. Told her to hurry. She made a fish face at me and grinned. Blew a few raspberries. Then she made me a fish face, too. She giggled. I giggled.

I thought about how big she is now, my third spawn. Totally not an infant anymore. Her legs kept flopping and her toes tickled my knees.

Then she reached out and poked me in both eyes. "Mama, you have eyebrowns."


"Yes! Eyebrowns."

I loved her a little more right then.

April 27, 2010

New Favorites

Loving me some red right now. The color reminds me of love (everyone say "awwwww").

So much about this one that I love. The composition. Her boots. The dog (labradoodle?). Her hair (I should be at that length by football season). Her boots. And also? The boots.

Mmmm. YES, please.

This photo made me buy paint.

Sloan Photography

More delicious couples photography. So inspiring.

All images properly cited on my tumblr site.

April 26, 2010

Of Faith And Football

At church yesterday, we had an amazing lesson on faith.

From the book of James:

2Consider it pure joy... whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.

12Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

Kind of makes me want to put on armor. Had to share.

It was a mighty busy weekend, Folks. I/we:

Ran 2 miles
Enjoyed pasta night together as 6
Went to the circus as 6
Went to the grocery store as 6 (pleasantly surprised this wasn't crazier than chasing 4 kids through the circus)
Watched Avatar (darling love story)
Painted the bathroom Cityscape gray
Finished all 14 working blocks on Trevor's quilt (I know, I heard you all gasp in shock)
Registered my 2 bigs for this:

Right. The testing of my faith will develop perseverance. I don't need to worry about Trev or Drew at the bottom of the pile. That's what I'm telling myself today.

April 22, 2010



Going to see this guy with my guy.

I surprised B with tickets for his birthday. CANNOT. WAIT. B has promised to wrap his plaid clad arms around me and sing into my ear. I have promised to dance in a cowboy hat and tight jeans. It's allllll goooooood.


It's Earth Day, yo. Today, please take a moment to give thanks to God for creating our Earth. Then promise to take care of it the best way you can. It's easy! Each of us can find something to improve. The Earth was His gift to us; we have to tend it.

Recycle more often. Reuse as much as you can. Buy used & vintage.
Use reusable bags instead of plastic, and fabric/glass instead of paper.

Turn off the sink when you're brushing your teeth, and lights when you're not using them.

Unplug electrical appliances when you're not around.

Use BPA-free water bottles instead of buying bottled water and generating more garbage.

Teach your children to take care of our land, to give back and live by example.

You know, the boys started baseball last week. Both will be going to practice once a week until they go to Ohio for the summer with their dad. Then when they get home they will both be in football 2-3x week this fall. Last year, carrying water was a problem for us. Disposable water bottles create garbage and until recently, all BPA-free water bottles were too pricey for me to buy 4 at a time.

Thanks to Tara Whitney, I have found something new I want to pick up this week at Target. For a cool $13. Check out these awesome Contigo bottles:

This is the one I have in mind, in colors for each of us. Loving the caribiner on the top, too.

We have big sideline plans this year, our family. Bleachers, a quilt on the grass, coffee at 8am, all of it. There will a lot of cheering, some worrying, and squealing from the little sister. There will be B, telling Andy to run like the wind and Trevor to wind it hard while pitching left AND right (yes, PITCHING - he has the best arm on the team, per Coach). There will be me, watching with pride as my two bigs strut their stuff, and also feeling much better that we are all ecologically-friendly and hydrated in the scorching sun of Da Plains. Good times.

April 20, 2010

I Love It

I could stare at that photo of Tomato Soup, AKA: B for days and days, but I figured it was time to publish this post. Its been sitting in my queue for a week now.

I give you my daughter, playing football the only way she knows how. Please note her curls blowing in the wind.

And then there is this cute guy, who just lost another tooth.

I love it. Every single bit of it.

April 19, 2010

Ta DA!

The picture is enormous and I can't figure out how to make it smaller. My brain is failing me.

The happy is also enormous and I'm not trying to make it smaller. Can't. No way. Can you tell by looking? Tee hee.

Also, PS: The happy running is still cranked up. I ran 2 miles on Friday. BOOYAH!

April 16, 2010

Obliterated (AKA: Andy Is FAAASSSTTT)

So 'round these parts we've been having a bit of football practice. Yes, I know it's baseball season - and actually both Drew and Trev are playing baseball - but at home they practice football. Constantly.

(Did you notice the 'Drew'? Andy wants to be called Drew these days. So I'm trying it on.)

It is good that they practice now because both of them are playing Junior League this fall. Trevor played last year, but this will be the first time through for Andrew. Of course I'm nervous about him playing. He is awfully tiny. But when I watch him play, I'm less worried.

Little dude takes 10 tries to catch the ball, but once he has the ball, LOOK OUT. He is wicked fast. Trevor has no idea what to make of this. What? Little brother GOOD at something? It's a revelation, I tell you.

Take a peek at what happens when Drew runs the ball after a delicate catch (and pay no mind to my neighbor's messy yard or my football jock hunky dunky):

Drew completely obliterated him. It happened every time. He outmaneuvered Trevor's tackle and then ran the ball. FAAASSSTTT. Bet you can guess how that made Trevor feel.

Don't worry. Little dude held his own (and what terrific tackle practice). This might be a good time to remind Trevor that beating up on your little brother isn't always the best idea... especially when he might kick your hiner on the football field.

April 15, 2010

Rear View

Can I get a show of hands: how many have been reading my rambling long enough to recall that I specifically said a year ago that I knew God would send me a guy who could bench press Andy? I did. I totally said that. Actually, I said The One can bench press Andy and clean a toilet. (Not that it was some magic qualifier, but I have always known the right man would fit our whole family exactly as he should, and bench pressing Andy seemed like a good way to turn that into a metaphor at the time.)

Love God. So, so much. He is one smart dude.

This is when the blog becomes a rear view mirror. I love it when the blog becomes a rear view mirror. Going back and rereading is so much fun sometimes. You find out that sometimes, you had it right. Sometimes, you are reminded that faith will prevail and you'll end up with exactly what God knows that you need.

And sometimes, you end up with a clever blog title that leads your humor exactly where you intended for it to go. This rear view ain't too shabby either. Just sayin'.

April 14, 2010

There Is An 'M' In Team

When Mabel wants to play football, the boys mow her down and steal the ball. So, B helps her out. She is part of our team (we are 6 peeps, yo). The boys figure that B + Moo can't be all that fast. Boy oh boy do they underestimate.

Trevor laughed his butt off when he realized how much he underestimated. Then he got up and came back for more.

At which point B dangled Moo + ball in front of him and said, "Na-na na-na boo-boo..." before taking off again. Mabel squealed and giggled the whole time.

I believe there was a group collapse after this photo, but I was laughing too hard to keep shooting.

So glad they realize that there is an 'M' in team.

April 13, 2010

Freckled And Cute, With A Touch Of Naughty

Enough said.

Nana Did In Fact Come To Visit

It was lovely weather over Easter while Nana visited Da Plains. She was thrilled to see us (mutual, that) and promptly did this within 30 minutes of her arrival:

Mabel loves her purple toenails.

Mabel also enjoyed eating clementines with Nana. That's a favorite for all of my kidlets - clementines with Nana. Not sure why, but Nana = clementines. Good thing I brought home 9 lbs of them before her plane landed.

There was lots of cuddling.

And T even let Nana kiss him. Which is a pain in my bahookey because Mom kisses are both embarrassing and poisonous now that he's going on 10. Lucky Nana.

Easter Sunday was lovely, but I didn't take one single picture. I made Pioneer Woman's brisket with loaded baked potatoes, asparagus, and rolls. I put the brisket in at 5am and went to church. B and his friend joined us for dinner. It was delicious (the food AND the company).

And actually, I have to gush (shocked, aren't you?) for a quick sec. When B arrived, I was pulling the brisket out and putting the potatoes in the oven. I literally blinked and felt him behind me in the kitchen, lifting the pan for me, holding the oven open, and basically finishing the meal at my side. He doesn't have to ask what I need, he just DOES IT. Doesn't miss a beat. I felt an overwhelming peace that afternoon. B isn't a guest anymore. He's my other part. He set the table, entertained the kids, and stood at my sink and washed my dishes by hand when we were finished. Judy's mouth was hanging open, watching him wash those dishes. He didn't think twice about it.

Great holiday. Great visit. Love you, Nana!
PS: And of course, she loved him!