Saturday, April 29, 2006

Rainy Day Blues

It has been raining steadily here for a couple of days, and they don't expect the sun to come out until Wednesday. This is a trial for our little Miss, who keeps trying to convince me that "it isn't raining at the playground". We are keeping busy with some fun indoor activities, like coloring, reading and, of course, dancing to the Veggie Tales.

I'm missing our walks and time outside, though, and it makes me a bit apprehensive about the 9 months of winter I will be experiencing *each year* whilst living here. Perhaps we'll try skiing. Do they make skis for 18 month olds? At the very least, I'm fairly certain that my future involves a great deal of sledding and snowman-making. The children will love it. We'll see how I do.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Keeping House (Or Not)

Ah, the bathrooms. How I hate to clean them. How I hate to use them if they are not clean. Oh, the quandary in which I find myself. As I scrubbed the sinks, tubs, and toilets today, I found myself grumbling (as I am wont to do) about housework. Since becoming a mother, I am even more frustrated by the fact that none of my house cleaning efforts seem to last for more than five minutes. No sooner do I vacuum than sand is tracked in from the playground. No sooner do I clean the kitchen than a sippy cup sails past my head and spills all over the linoleum. You get the idea. "Woe is me, woe is me!" I thought to myself as I wiped the faucets and the duckie toothbrush holder.

Suddenly, in the midst of my internal moaning, a statistic popped into my mind that I heard on a television special recently. Women of my grandmothers' generation spent an average of *sixty* hours per week on housework. They had few of the modern conveniences that I enjoy, like a clothes dryer, swiffers, and (most importantly) Clorox Wipes. If they spent that much time on housework, while juggling children and other responsibilities, I suppose that I can manage the (much smaller amount of) time that I have to invest in keeping the place livable.

As if that knowledge wasn't enough, I was also convicted spiritually for my groaning. While perusing the internet later in the day, I came across this quote from Martin Luther (quite by accident . . . or quite providentially):

Our natural reason looks at marriage and turns up its nose and says, Alas! Must I rock the baby? Wash its diapers? Make its bed? Smell its stench? Stay at nights with it? Take care of it when it cries? Heal its rashes and sores? And on top of that care for my spouse, provide labor at my trade, take care of this and take care of that? Do this and do that? And endure this and endure that? Why should I make such a prisoner of myself?

What then does Christian faith say to this? It opens its eyes, looks upon all these insignificant, distasteful and despised duties in the spirit, and is aware that they are all adorned with divine approval as with the costliest gold and jewels.

It says, O God, I confess I am not worthy to rock that little babe or wash its diapers, or to be entrusted with the care of a child and its mother. How is it that I without any merit have come to this distinction of being certain that I am serving thy creature and thy most precious will? Oh, how gladly will I do so. Though the duty should be even more insignificant and despised, neither frost nor heat, neither drudgery nor labor will distress me for I am certain that it is thus pleasing in thy sight.

~Martin Luther

May this be my attitude, may this be my prayer.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

A Sweet, Normal Day

Today was one of the best we've had since arriving in the Twin Cities, and we did nothing special or out of the ordinary. It was just one of those days when the children seemed especially sweet, the weather was beautiful, the birds were singing, and bunnies were hopping through the lawn in front of our apartment. The little peanuts and I had a wonderful morning together. We went through our normal routine and I was even able to *gasp* vacuum the entire apartment! The three of us then went on a little drive and met Mr. Daddy Peanut for lunch. We had a lovely time at the Panera Bread, where the littles were cooperative and jolly. Miss sang "A spoonful of Sugar" (with gusto) most of the way home.

After arriving back in the apartment, both little ones took good naps, and then *spit spot* we were off to the playground for some fun on the slides and swings. One of the highlight moments of the day came when Miss happily left the playground at my bidding, without so much as a whimper. We came back to the apartment for a little play time, and then happily greeted Mr. as he returned from work. After a lovely dinner of leftovers, we blew bubbles in the kitchen, and took a stroll around the apartment complex before bedtime.

Of course, there were a few challenges today (as there are every day), but it was an overwhelmingly happy day around here. I am so glad that God gives us days like this . . . days when I can see progress in the children, days when I feel like maybe we're doing a few things right, days that encourage me to keep *doing* this mothering job with all my heart.

Looking forward to what tomorrow brings . . .

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Happy 10-Month-Day

It's been a long day in the Peanut household. We had a great time on our maiden voyage to the Hennepin County Library for toddler storytime, we had a great time on the playground this afternoon, and we had a not-so-great time when Miss Peanut went on a "I don't WANT it!" strike at dinner. The children are now sleeping peacefully, however, and Mr. and I are looking forward to some quiet time together.

We couldn't let the 25th pass, though, without remarking on the 10-Month-Day of little Master. He smiles and laughs his way through each day, which, in turn, makes all of our lives so much brighter. 10 months old!

Monday, April 24, 2006

Out for Dinner

Due to a culinary mishap perpetrated by yours truly, we drove to St. Paul tonight and had dinner in Mickey's Dining Car. This groovy little place was moved from New Jersey to St. Paul in 1939, and has been at the same location ever since. It is *tiny*, but wasn't very busy on a Monday night, so there was a small corner table available for the Peanuts. The food was oh-so-fantastic. Miss had pancakes, Mr. had a patty melt, and I had a burger and fries. Perhaps not the healthiest fare, but we take comfort from their declaration on the menu that they don't use 'strange preservatives' and that they only fry their foods in 100% cholesterol-free oil! Who needs vegetables when one can dine in such an establishment? If you're ever in the Twin Cities, it is a must-see/taste. We walked away only imagining how good the malts and hot fudge sundaes must be. Our arteries have already thanked us for suspending that pleasure until a later date.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Goodbye, Grandma & Papa

We love you, Grandma and Papa Peanut. You encourage each of us in a unique way whenever we're with you. Miss P. has already noticed your absence, as there was a distinct lack of applause tonight after she finished reciting the answers to her catechism questions. Thanks for always making us feel like we've done well, and that we should each 'take a bow.'

We'll miss you.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Growing Up So Quickly

This morning, as I do every morning, I sat down with my children at the breakfast table. I placed a pile of Cheerios on Master's highchair tray, and I poured a bowl of cereal for Miss. I plunked down in my own chair, and took in the scene before me. Miss bobbed back and forth to the hymns playing over the stereo, whilst milk dribbled down her chin and onto her bib. She cocked her head to the side and sang out, "Praise da Loooord, praise the Looooord, let de earth hear his voice!! Praise da Loooord, Praise da Loooord, let da peeeople reeeejoice!"

In response to this, Master shoved a handful Cheerios into his mouth and grinned at me. He then added his own exclamation of "Da-da-da-ba-ba-ba-maaaaaa-haaaaa!"

In this simple moment, I was struck again by how quickly these little peanuts are growing and changing. My little Master is cruising around the living room these days, balancing with his hands on the furniture. Miss visited our playground this afternoon, and immediately ran up to the other children, exclaiming, "Hellooooo everyone! I am here to play on the playground with you guys! Come on!!! Let's go down the slide!" The other girls looked shocked and unsure of what to say to this boisterous, outspoken little thing. From a distance, I smiled and shook my head.

How could my baby be on the verge of walking and talking? And, how could my *first* baby be performing the duties of social director at the playground and singing full verses of To God be the Glory? When did these changes happen? Watching the little Peanuts grow and change makes me wistful at times, but it also makes me so thankful for God's blessing in the opportunity to see them develop and mature in little ways every day. It reminds me that my role in their lives will change greatly in the coming years, and it motivates me to get this part right. They will never be these amazing little people again, and I need to relish my role as their mommy.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Common and Uncommon

Since relocating to the Twin Cities, our lives have been an interesting mixture of the very familiar and the completely unfamiliar.

The familiar consists of our little family, with each member's habits, ways, endearing qualities, and . . . errrrr . . . not-so-endearing qualities. Each day we see our Miss Peanut flitting and floating around her brother, like a butterfly sampling a flower:

Everything else in our lives is unfamiliar. Just today, we experienced the city-wide tornado drill, *real* thunderstorms, and the presence of a winding creek and a huge waterfall in the middle of the city.

Little by little, though, these new things are making their way into our everyday lives. Today, we were able to show the Grandparents Peanut some of the natural wonders that surround us, and I was even able to navigate a route to said wonders myself (without the directional help of Mr. Peanut). Perhaps these new parts of our life will become familiar more quickly than I would have thought.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A Blustery Day

We enjoyed some crisp, cool weather today with Grandma and Papa Peanut. It was wonderful weather for driving about, exploring some local stores, visiting Mr. Peanut on his lunch hour, and taking a walk around our apartment complex. Master did feel a bit chilly, though, and was forced to seek shelter in Papa's fleece.

We continue to have a wonderful time with our visitors, and are trying not to think about how few days we have left with them before they fly home. *Sigh* I suppose that knowing this time must come to an end makes us determined to enjoy what time we do have all the more. And we must realize, after all, that the delivery of a Caribou Coffee mocha every morning cannot last forever. The Grandparents Peanut would go bankrupt, and Mrs. Peanut would grow very fat indeed. For now, though, we will enjoy our coffee, our adventures, our talks, and our time together.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Grandma & Papa Peanut Are Here!

Much to the joy of our little ones, Grandma and Papa Peanut have flown into town for their first visit. We are so happy to have them, and are busy showing them our new home city. It is amazing to think that we have only been Minnesoooootans for three weeks -- it seems as though we have been here for a much longer time.

Our adventure today led us to St. Paul and an exploration of some of our favorite neighborhoods in the Twin Cities. Miss loves St. Paul because we 1) travel through a tunnel on the freeway in order to reach it, and 2) there are statues of Peanuts characters (no relation) placed throughout the city. Charles Schultz himself grew up in St. Paul, and there are reminders of the Peanuts gang all around the town. Today, Miss repeatedly informed me that Snoopy is going to send her an e-mail. She has been receiving e-mails of various kinds from her grandparents, and now expects e-mail from anyone she meets. We'll see if Snoopy comes through.

It is wonderful indeed when family arrives for a visit, and the whole length of their stay is stretched out in front of us. It holds so many possibilities for exciting and special times spent together.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Happy Easter

On this Easter Sunday, we are so very thankful for God's provision of the church we attended this morning. This church is the only one of our denomination in the Twin Cities area, and it just so *happens* to be two miles from our apartment. This was our third week in attendance, and we felt so blessed this morning by the service, and by the extraordinary friendliness of the congregants. We have been approached and greeted warmly by what seems like every family in the church. We were stopped in the parking lot on our way in by a friendly middle-aged couple. A very excited Miss Peanut was given a pink Easter egg immediately following the service by an adorable little boy. At least five to six individuals stopped us to introduce themselves and say "hello" before we reached our car in the parking lot. One man even introduced himself by shouting hello and extending his hand out of the window of his truck.

It is so very affirming to see the Body of Christ at work. We found this to be true during our three years in Chicago, where a small group from our church became very close friends and demonstrated a willingness to care for us as brothers and sisters in Christ. They provided rides to the airport, meals in their homes, a place to shower when the heat and hot water in our apartment went kaput, food and visits when Miss was born, and *true* fellowship.

Whether we attend this new church for weeks, months, or years, we will always be thankful for their faithfulness to the Word and their simple kindness. They are truly showing us a living demonstration of what is being taught each Sunday . . . not by seeking to enroll us in "programs" or activities, but by being authentically *kind*.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Sick Day

When I was a little girl, and I was sick, my mom would always make me a special bed on the couch. And, if I was sick to my stomach, she would bring me 7-up in a special cup (with a straw) and some saltines. That was always the one good thing about being sick. It made me feel especially cozy and loved. Today, Miss was suffering from her cold, and so I made her a special bed this afternoon and let her watch her beloved "Meet the Orchestra" DVD. ("Oooooo . . . the percussion section!") She seems to love the special bed on the couch as much as I did, and I believe that I spent some of my sick days underneath the very same quilt that she is using in this picture.

Fortunately, Miss and Master were not so sick today that we couldn't
enjoy . . .

Watching Master continue to hone his pulling-up skills. He is enjoying himself greatly, and we are busy with trying to catch him before he falls and whacks his head on the furnishings.

A lovely tea party, with Miss's favorite books serving as a table:

A short walk on a beautiful spring day (we even spotted some deer visiting a little pond on the property adjoining our apartment complex):

All in all, not a bad day . . . even with runny noses and sore throats. There are blessings, small and great, all around us.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Maundy Thursday

"Are you not thirsty?" said the Lion.
"I'm dying of thirst," said Jill.
"Then drink," said the Lion.
"May I - could I - would you mind going
away while I do?" said Jill.
The Lion answered this only by a look and a
very low growl. And as Jill gazed at its
motionless bulk, she realised that she might as
well have asked the whole mountain to move
aside for her convenience.
The delicious rippling noise of the stream was
driving her nearly frantic.
"Will you promise not to - do anything to
me, if I do come?" said Jill.
"I make no promise," said the Lion.
Jill was so thirsty now that, without noticing
it, she had come a step nearer.
"Do you eat girls?" she said.
"I have swallowed up girls and boys, women
and men, kings and emperors, cities and
realms," said the Lion. It didn't say this as if it
were boasting, nor as if it were sorry, nor as if it
were angry. It just said it.
"I daren't come and drink," said Jill.
"Then you will die of thirst," said the Lion.
"Oh dear!" said Jill, coming another step
nearer. "I suppose I must go and look for
another stream then."
"There is no other stream," said the Lion.

C.S. Lewis
The Silver Chair
chap. 2, pp. 16-17.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Timely Quotes


My grandmother once told me to avoid colds and angry people whenever I could. It's sound advice.
Walter Anderson

I have no idea who Walter Anderson is, but I agree with his grandmother. The children woke up this morning (actually in the wee small hours of the morning) with an oncoming cold. Ick. Double ick. One of the many things I never knew about raising young children is how often they would be sick. It stands to reason, since their little immune systems need developing, they touch all manner of vile things, and they place *everything* that will fit into their mouths. So, we will see how long this particular spell lasts, and we will wish that these dreaded, beastly colds were as easy to avoid as angry people.


We should all have one person who knows how to bless us despite the evidence, Grandmother was that person to me.
Phyllis Theroux

I have no idea who Phyllis Theroux is, but I agree with her about grandmothers. We will miss you, Grandma G. Peanut. We can't wait to see you, Grandma T. Peanut!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Photos of the Day

"I . . .Can't . . . Reach . . . This . . . One!"

Master in Grandad's Hat

Our visit with Grandma and Grandad is coming to an end. We've been all around town, out to eat *several* times, and have had many good adventures. The little peanuts have been happiest, though, with the quiet times at the apartment. Making tea with the new china tea set, going to our newly constructed (and now completed) playground, and just being with two of their favorite people have been the highlights for our children. Grandparents are the only people in the world who are as taken with the little peanuts as we are (maybe more so). How nice it has been for us all to spend this time with them.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Alone Time

While Mr., Miss and Master were off with the Grandparents today, I found myself with some time alone. I honestly can't remember the last time that I was alone. Without the children. By myself. It. Was. Very. Nice.

For approximately three hours this morning, I had no responsibilities . . . and no one to take care of. I had a difficult time deciding what to do with myself. Should I sleep? Take a walk? Go shopping? Clean the apartment? Iron (heaven forbid)? In the end, I decided to peruse the aisles at Target for a while, and then traveled on to Barnes and Noble for a grande skim mocha and quiet reading time. The whole experience was very relaxing, and I felt quite rejuvenated and ready to see the littles again when they returned from their adventures with Daddy, Grandma and Grandad.

In fact, despite my enjoyment of my free and easy morning, I felt no sense of loss when it came to an end. Time alone is something that I used to take for granted. Ironically, though, when I had a lot of time alone I used to spend it daydreaming about how wonderful it would be to have a *baby*. I refuse to be that person who can never be content with her life -- the person who can't seem to stop gazing over the fence, looking for greener grass. The life I have now is the one I have always wanted to have, and I wouldn't trade it for all of the grande skim mochas and leisurely mornings in the world.

Sunday, April 09, 2006


Overheard in the bathtub this morning:

Miss: (whispering) I really love you. You know, I really love you.

Master: Goo-ga-da-da-da.

Overheard in our car later today:

Miss: Hi boy! Pfffffttttthhhh! Pffffttttthhhhh!

Master: Chuckle, chuckle, chuckle, ha-ha-ha-ha! (Head tilted back, dimples fully displayed)

Overheard in our home this evening:

Miss: No! NOOOOOO!!!! Don't touch that! NO, NO, NOOOOOOOO! Ahhhhhhh!!!

Master: Chuckle, chuckle, chuckle, ha-ha-ha-ha!

Since we arrived in Minnesota, the little peanuts have been interacting quite a bit more. Without as many other adults available to serve as playmates, Miss has taken to playing more with her little brother. They roll around on the floor together. They laugh hysterically at each other. She hugs him, kisses him, and nearly strangles him with demonstrations of affection. We have yet to see how the relationship between this brother and sister will play out in the coming months and years, but it is a sweet and adorable thing to behold right now. There are the occasional moments of jealousy and anger, but, for the most part, the two of them entertain each other (and us) throughout each day with their enthusiasm and silliness. I sometimes wonder how their relationship will develop, but, for now, I just try to enjoy this stage of laughter.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

The Big River

We took the Grandparents on an exploration of Downtown Minneapolis today, complete with a hike to the Mississippi River. We learned that this bridge was the first ever built across the Mississippi, and we saw the only waterfall on the river . . . the St. Anthony Falls. It was a beautiful day . . . cool, crisp and sunny. The temperature topped out at around 52 degrees, but the natives were running around, basking in the sun as if it was the warmest of summer days. We stopped for ice cream tonight on an excursion to St. Paul, and the line at the Grand Creamery extended out the door. Grandad Peanut overheard a fellow patron saying, "Wait until it reaches 60 degrees! The line will be *really* long then!"

Yes, the lakes are beginning to defrost, the grass is turning green, buds are appearing on the shrubs, and Spring is definitely on it's way. We will appreciate a Saturday like this one so much more one year from now, when we, too, have endured the pain of Winter and will be glorying in the 50 degree warmth.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Like Man New Made

The Peanut family is being blessed by a visit from Grandma and Grandad Peanut. The littles are very excited, and many tea parties are being hosted and games are being played. We are all tuckered out from such activities, and so I leave you with a Shakespearean quote, appropriate for the season of Lent:


Your brother is a forfeit of the law,
And you but waste your words.


Alas, alas!
Why, all the souls that were were forfeit once;
And He that might the vantage best have took
Found out the remedy. How would you be,
If He, which is the top of judgment, should
But judge you as you are? O, think on that;
And mercy then will breathe within your lips,
Like man new made.

Measure for Measure Act 2, Scene 2

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Simple Pleasures

Papa Peanut and I have been corresponding about the amazing capacity of children to delight in the simple things. Anyone who has ever been in the presence of a small child knows this to be true. A dog, a toy, mom's keys, Daddy's name tag, play-doh, the sound of a bird. Any of these can cause a little one to squeal with delight. Today was a day filled with such little pleasures around our home.

First, Miss P expressed utter enchantment this morning with our parking garage.

Miss: "Mommy, isn't it nice out here?"

Me (Doubtfully surveying the dirty, dark garage): "Hmmmm, what do you like about it?"

Miss (Gazing up, and using both hands to reach toward the ceiling): "The LIGHTS!! Aren't they nice? And they make me so . . . lighty!"

Later in the day, a moment of sheer joy swept over then entire household, as the beloved magna doodle (thought to be lost by the movers) was found. I think that every neighbor in our building could hear the shrieks of glee . . . "My Doooodle!! My Doooodle!!"

Master, meanwhile, is experiencing baby-sized delights all his own, such as learning to pull himself up to standing while holding on to the couch. He accomplished this feat for the first time yesterday, and today he tried repeatedly to do it again. When he finally made it, he turned, looked at his sister and I, and laughed as if to say, "I did it! I am invincible! There is no stopping me now!"

One of the best things about spending my day with these little ones is the reminder of how wonderful the smallest things can be. They teach me to appreciate each blessing, however insignificant it may seem. I often hear profuse expressions of thanks from Miss for very little things, and it reminds me of my lack of gratitude for what I have been given. Sadly, I often complain more than I rejoice. I hope that I can learn to be more like these little peanuts, in this very important way.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Grocery Trauma

A word of extra-crunchy wisdom from Mrs. Peanut:

Do not attempt shopping for a large haul of groceries with a 3 year old and a 9 month old, if you are (1) shopping alone, and (2) must park in an underground garage which is a walk and an elevator ride away from your apartment door. To quote Colonel Brandon in Austen's Sense and Sensibility: "The result can only be ruination and despair."

. . . and milk that looks like this:

. . . and pears that look like this:

Fortunately, the children and myself all returned intact, though I was huffing and puffing from the best cardio workout I've had in quite some time. Yet again, the little peanuts rose to the occasion, and were wonderful in the store, in the parking garage, on the elevator, down the hall, back down the hall in the opposite direction, back down the elevator, back up the elevator, and down the hall yet again. Miss was giddy from her lollipop reward received at the checkstand, and Master was busily chewing on the side of the community shopping cart, ingesting germs from heaven-knows-whom. Through it all, they were quite oblivious to my plight, other than the time when Miss looked at me with some concern as I tried to lift the front of the shopping cart in order to hoist it into the elevator, all the while holding the elevator door open with my backside.

"Mommy? What. Are. You. Doing?"

"Just . . . (pant, pant) trying . . . (pant, pant) . . . to get . . . . this cart . . . in (pant) the . . . elevator . . . sweetie."

"Oh. OK!! I loooove the escalavator!"

In spite of Miss's enjoyment of the extra "escalavator" rides, I do believe that Mr. Peanut will accompany me on future stock-up shopping trips.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Party Time

Tonight, the Peanut family attended it's first social event in the Twin Cities. It was a get-to-know-you gathering for Mr. P's co-workers. It was fascinating to see a group of people so diverse, who have all come to the same location for the same job. One woman introduced us to her German husband, who is still awaiting the proper paperwork to become a US citizen. One man is Hispanic, but grew up on the south side of Chicago, and thus you hear a thick Chicago accent when he speaks, rather than the one you might expect to hear. I spoke extensively with a young man who grew up in Northern Minnesota, but went to Pepperdine and lived for years in Long Beach. When he decided to move back to his home state, his live-in girlfriend decided to stay in Southern California. He kept emphasizing to me that he had made the right decision, almost as if he needed to convince himself. Our host and his wife have lived in Washington, Africa, Cincinnati, and a handful of other places. They are hoping that this will be their last move for a while.

So many different journeys leading to the same place. The only thing that this group had in common was that somewhat glazed, far-off look in the eyes that belongs to those who have recently endured a major move.

Everyone also shared a friendliness and a desire to get to know these other people and their stories. Many of us also shared in common the fact that we have little children. Miss Peanut was in 7th heaven, as the basement level of the house was a playroom, filled with toys, coloring supplies and children who were probably all thrilled to be away from the moving boxes and stressed parents for a couple of hours. When the time came to say 'goodbye,' she didn't want to leave. It is always amazing to see how quickly children can make friends and enjoy each other's company. They don't even have to know each other's names, much less the stories of how each of them arrived at this house, on this night, in Minnesota.

Master donned his Hawaiian shirt . . . and was all partied out by the time we arrived at home.

Monday, April 03, 2006


Today we are thankful for:

1. A great first day at the new store for Mr. P. All went smoothly, the crew seems friendly, and almost all of them have small children. So, there is a sense of identification with others at work that he hasn't really had in the past.

2. A good day for myself and the littles. Miss is having trouble, at times, with her new surroundings and the distinct lack of grandparental attention, but surprises me at other times with her patience. She was a dream child at Toys R Us . . . talking with all of the toys and stuffed animals, as if she fully expected them to respond, and yet was completely willing to say "bye-bye" to them and leave the store empty handed. She was, however, *not* a dream child later in the day when she decided that her paint-with-water book should only be arranged in a CERTAIN way on the table. Master is a mixed bag these days as well -- still as smiley, snuggly and eat-him-up sweet as ever, but apparently having acquired a honing device that causes him to crawl in the direction of any electrical wire and immediately stick it in his mouth. Me: "No wires, no, no, no!" Master: *Grin* giggle, giggle. All in all, the sweet and good outweighs the exasperating.

3. A beautiful day here in the Twin Cities. Sunny, clear, and just gorgeous. It is so fun to watch Spring springing, without having had to endure the winter (this time).

4. The opportunity for all of us to have dinner together, and then for Mr. and I to have some relaxational time after the kids went to bed.

5. The realization that #4 will be happening *every night* for the next few weeks, before the new store opens and Mr.'s schedule turns weird again.

6. The new playground being built just across from our apartment. Miss saw evidence of the construction today, and asked me if the squirrels were going to be the ones building it. I told her that some men will probably do the work, and she said, "Oh, and I will say thank you to them. And they will say 'you're welcome!' and I will be sooooo happy!"

And lastly,

7. Miss and Master are thankful for the many mirrored closet doors in our apartment (by far their favorite feature of our new digs).

Sunday, April 02, 2006

On Our Own

Tomorrow, Mr. Peanut will begin working again. Though we have been in the midst of a major move and all of the stress that entails, we have really enjoyed being together for a solid week. He has helped with the children, helped cook the meals, helped unpack the boxes, and helped keep me sane.

Tomorrow, the kids and I will be on our own for the first time. For the past two years (and the entirety of Master's life), we have been living near our families. Ready and willing grandparents were just a phone call and a short drive away. That safety net doesn't exist here in the Twin Cities. Without a church family or any friends in the area, we are truly on our own right now. The thought is a bit daunting, to say the least. I remind myself, though, that God goes before me, even in the mundane tasks of everyday life. I remind myself, also, that the work I am about to do is not simply mundane. It is the amazing opportunity to be with my children . . . to teach them, play with them, and laugh with them every day.

Tomorrow, we will be trying to add some new structure to our every day routine. The little peanuts and I will begin exploring the surrounding areas on our own. We will attempt a trip to Toys R Us (*gulp*), in order to purchase a bath seat for Master. We will view it all as an adventure, and will vow to keep a sense of humor about it all.

But, tomorrow, we will miss Mr. P, and we'll rush to the door when he comes home again.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Our Mediator

I'm sorry to admit that, in the midst of our move, this season of lent has not been in the forefront of my mind. Let us remember that . . .

The Maker of man was made man, that the Ruler of the stars might suck at the breast; that the Bread might be hungered; the Fountain, thirst; the Light, sleep; the Way, be wearied by the journey; the Truth, be accused by false witnesses; the Judge of the living and the dead, be judged by a mortal judge; the Chastener be chastised with whips; the Vine, be crowned with thorns; the Foundation, be hung upon the tree; Strength, be made weak; Health, be wounded; life, die. To suffer these and suchlike things, undeserved things, that He might free the undeserving, for neither did He deserve any evil, who for our sakes endured so many evils, nor were we deserving of anything good, we who through Him received such good.

Saint Augustine
The Confessions