Friday, September 22, 2006

Shipping Out

Today is the day he has been training for since January. My brother, Marine Corps Sniper Corporal Aaron P. Black will be shipping out today with his unit to Iraq. Please keep him and the rest of the troops in your prayers. He says he hopes they will all still be vertical seven months from now. Also please remember his wife, Suzy, and four children in your prayers as well.
I didnt write what follows, but I thought it was an appropriate reminder about what our men are going through in war. It is easy to forget, as we feel so comfortable here, but let's not forget about them and what they are doing for us.

You stay up for 16 hours. He stays up for days on end.

You take a warm shower to help you wake up. He goes days or weeks without running water.

You complain of a "headache", and call in sick. He gets shot at as others are hit, and keeps moving forward.

You put on your anti war/don't support the troops shirt, and go meet up with your friends. He still fights for your right to wear that shirt.

You talk trash about your "buddies" that aren't with you. He knows he may not see some of his buddies again.

You complain about how hot it is. He wears his heavy gear, not daring to take off his helmet to wipe his brow.

You go out to lunch, and complain because the restaurant got your order wrong. He doesn't get to eat today.

You go to the mall and get your hair redone. He doesn't have time to brush his teeth today.

You're angry because your class ran 5 minutes over. He's told he will be held over an extra 2 months.

You call your girlfriend and set a date for tonight. He waits for the mail to see if there is a letter from home.

You roll your eyes as a baby cries.He gets a letter with pictures of his new child, and wonders if they'll ever meet.

You criticize your government, and say that war never solves anything. He sees the innocent tortured and killed by their own people and remembers why he is fighting.

You hear the jokes about the war, and make fun of men like him. He hears the gunfire, bombs and screams of the wounded.

You see only what the media wants you to see. He sees the broken bodies lying around him.

You are asked to go to the store by your parents. You don't. He does exactly what he is told.

You stay at home and watch TV. He takes whatever time he is given to call, write home, sleep, and eat.

You crawl into your soft bed, with down pillows, and get comfortable. He crawls under a tank for shade and a 5 minute nap, only to be woken by gunfire.

You sit there and judge him, saying the world is probably a worse place because of men like him. If only there were more men like him!

Aaron without the paint and garb with his family.

Aaron and I in June, the last day I was able to see him. Behind us is a sign that our brother, Scott painted, that reads: "Pray for our warriors".

Friday, September 15, 2006

Family Fun

My sister-in-law Suzy and the kids were up from Georgia last week just for a few days and it was really good to see them! We had thought they wouldnt be back up for a visit again until Christmas, so it was a nice surprise. The kids had a blast all playing together again, and as usual it was a challenge to get a decent picture of everyone! Next year we will have two more kiddos to add to the line-up! Guess we'll have to get a bigger couch. :)

Last Wednesday Fabio couldnt work because of the rain, so he decided at 7am that it would be a good time to clean the pool and put it away! So he and Joshua went out in their boots and rain coats in the pouring rain to "work". I just thought it was a funny scene. :) And I think Fabio got wetter from Joshua's "help" with the hose than from the rain!!

Here is one more pic from my b-day, a bit closer-up in case anyone who hasnt seen me lately wondered how my belly is looking these days. :) (Incidentally, for anyone who didnt already know this, if you click on the pictures, you can see a bigger version.) I am 28 weeks along now, and I think I am smaller this time than the previous two. But, just when I think I'm nice and "little", a couple different people asked me last week if I was *sure* I wasnt having twins, and someone else told me I was *HUGE* and someone else swore I'd never make it ALL the way to December! [ rolleyes ] Oh well, I guess I'm just blessed that way, with a spacious baby carrier in front. :)

Monday, September 11, 2006

Rainy Day Fun!

Mud boots, serving their purpose... discarded on the driveway! These are too big for Dominique, and she cant walk well in them, but she has outgrown her other ones. She tried removing them three times, and I finally quit trying to keep them on her feet.

She was much happier once she could walk around freely in her sock feet! Good thing she wasn't wearing white socks! (Incidentally, she is starting to recognize and say her colors. Her "favorites", or at least the ones she can say the best right now are green and blue. I think they were Joshua's first ones, too.)

She was being unusually cooperative with the camera today, so I had to take advantage of the opportunity, and I did get quite a few cute shots! This is a sampling of my favorites.

What a big girl! She is looking less and less like a baby to me now, and rightly so. She will be two next month, and soon there will be a true baby joining our big girl!

Joshua's cheesy grin was induced by finding a whole treasure heap of worms! He has been dreaming of fishing, and collecting worms in the meantime. :) The only time he has been fishing, they couldnt find any worms and used grapes instead! The fish did eat the grapes, but apparently grapes slip off of hooks too easily, and they didnt catch any fish. This time he will be armed and ready!


Letting Dominique hold his worms. She was a bit apprehensive at first, but eventually accepted his gift. He had an ulterior motive: he had found a pile of BB's outside the Royal Ranger shed that he wanted to collect instead of worms.

"They're kinda wiggly, but I think I like them!"

"I wonder what will happen if I run with them, swing them around, and squish them between my fingers??"

"You know what? I dont think I like these things after all! They are too squishy! After all, I am a GIRL!! You take it, Mommy!"

This last picture is of Fabio and I in front of the big bean at Millenium Park in Chicago. Fabio took me downtown on Saturday night for a special date... for my birthday! It's not often we go out without the kids, and it was nice, but ya know what? We missed them! Everything we saw, we wanted to show them too, so we think we will just have to go back and share the joy!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

I've been tagged!

My friend Bipin tagged me to do a "One Book Meme", or in other words pass on some fave books, or kind of like a mini book report. :) I'm not sure I will be able to narrow it down to only one book per category, but I'll try! So, here goes:

One book that changed your life: Well, obviously the Bible! Other than that one, Hinds Feet in High Places by Hannah Hurnard, My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers, and Created To Be His Helpmeet by Debbie Pearl

One book that you’ve read more than once: All of those listed in the previous category! Other than those, hmmm, let me think: Love Comes Softly by Janette Oak

One book you’d want on a desert island: Well, again, other than the Bible, maybe Country Women? (kind of a survival guide)

One book that made you laugh: Yes, They're All Ours by Rick Boyer - written by a father of fourteen. He has a very humorous writing style, not to mention plenty of humorous stories to tell!

One book that made you cry [or feel really sad]: Ummmm.... The Hiding Place? by Corrie Ten Boom. It was a mixture of sad and hopeful, about Christians in the holocaust, who were sent to a concentration camp for hiding Jews.

One book that you wish had been written: Well, I have wished on several occasions that my mother had written a diary over the years for me to read and glean from now. She has forgotten many things from early child-rearing years, and a written record would have been great. That is one of my main motivations for keeping up with journaling: my children. I also wish that a great number of good books in English had been written in Spanish, Portuguese and Japanese, for me to be able to pass them on as excellent resources to various people.

One book that you wish had never been written: These are hard questions, and ones I dont sit around and contemplate often! I think Bipin's and Christy's answers are good: The Da Vinci Code and The Origin of the Species. Other than that, maybe the Harry Potter series? (Sorry, Bipin!)

One book you’re currently reading: Lying In ~ A History of Childbirth in America. Dont feel like looking up the author's names right now. It is fascinating! I love history, and I love all topics related to pregnancy and childbirth, and this is a very interesting history book of childbirth in America from colonial times to present and the development of people's attitudes and the practices surrounding births in different epochs. Good information toward my training to be a midwife. :)

One book you’ve been meaning to read: There are definitely WAY more than one! I have stacks that are waiting to be read! But, the first one I can think of is Hands On Projects for Character Building by Rick and Marilyn Boyer. It lists things you can do with your children that emphasize godly character. I have used a few of the projects, though, even though I havent read all the way through the book. :) Very good!

Now tag five people. I tag
  • Jody B.

  • ,
  • Kristi S.
  • ,
  • Lisa D.

  • , Englers, and Tim E.