Thursday, February 23, 2012

Around the Hood

Here's some pics taken from our phones, or pinterest or, you know, World Market.

Like this bed? I totally want this bed frame. And I think my coffee cup looks pretty dang good posing on it. But some people, who I won't name but will say their name rhymes with Rod, don't like it. Even though it was on sale. Some people have no taste. Just kidding, Rod. You're entitled to your opinions; just know that one day you may come home to find this bed in our bedroom....

Moving on.

Here's my youngest on bus stop adventures. He's happiest when his pants are up at his thighs. I'm not sure why.  I'm inclined to blame Rod again.

And here's the middle child being, well, the classic middle child. He taught his younger brother how to burp and say "excuse me safety." Yes, we are delighted and proud.

And here's the oldest being her normal diva like self with a slightly bruised nose.
She chose to do her research paper this week on Martin Luther King Jr. because "without him, she wouldn't have Isaac as a brother."  We love MLK Jr. Yes, we do.

And last but not least, here I know, just doing my thing.

Ha ha. I wish.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Dearest Stranger

Dear Lady at Whole Foods Whom I've Never Met,

I don't even know where to begin. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you. One day, I hope to be like you. I hope to walk through the grocery store and find the weary mom and help her. What you did today was probably just a small gesture on your part, but to me, it meant the world. To me, you were a hero. You had no idea what my day had been like up until that point, but I can assure you, it was not good. In fact, it was one of the worst days we've had in a long, long time.

You see, Stranger in the Grocery Store, my son has special needs. And sometimes those needs mean we avoid the public, but today, because of those needs, the public could not be avoided. We had to have things for him to eat, and they had to be purchased at Whole Foods. And my husband is in Ecuador right now, so I had to bring all three kids to run that errand.

So when my youngest was kicking and screaming on the floor because it was a half day and our schedule was out of whack, and because his pants didn't feel right on his legs, and because I had attempted to get him to stop picking his nose - and while my other two were halfway down the aisle yelling to me that they couldn't find the almond milk he needed and everyone else was walking by and staring at me, I wanted to die. And yes Ma'am, I know that sentence was probably a run-on sentence. At least in my deteriorated state of mind I think it was. I don't correct grammar on my blog. I apologize. 

But then you came along. And you looked at me kindly and without one iota of judgement in your eyes. And you helped me up. And you sent your teenage daughter down the aisles to grab the last of the things I needed while we waited in line. And as I stood there, I was scared to look at you for fear of crying. But when I did glance up to thank you yet again, you just smiled at me. And your smile and your eyes said "I've been there. You can do this." And then when Owen finally calmed down and was laying on my shoulder merely sobbing instead of screaming his head off and you reached up and rubbed his back and told me you thought he looked really sweet, well I didn't even know what to say.

Stranger, I cannot tell you what that meant to me. I told my sister I thought you were an angel. Because he is sweet. Even when he's not sweet because the world doesn't feel right to him; on the inside, he is still sweet. And somehow you saw that. I was so weary when I left that store. Bone tired after the day we had. But my heart was lit up because I was in awe of your kindness. So thank you. If we one day meet again, I would like to buy you a cup of coffee and tell you what a breath of fresh air you were for those few chaotic minutes in my life. And also, I would like to hire you for all future grocery store outings.

One Very Grateful Bone Tired Mom

5th Famiversary

Five years ago today we held him for the first time.

And five years later his smile and sweet and spunky spirit are still rocking our world.

We love you, Isaac David Tadesse Fischer.
More than you could ever know.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Ahhhhh....Valentine's Day.
Can I be honest? I don't really like Valentine's Day. Never have. And this distaste probably originates with the humiliating high school tradition of valentine carnations. You know that tradition where you can order carnations for someone and then they interrupt classes all day to hand them out. And at the end of the day there's this huge unannounced competition as everyone heads to their cars. The parking lot is the stage and everyone stops and stares to see how many carnations you received. And I usually had about one. And it was usually from my friend, Whitney. And I loved it but of course I still felt inept as I watched the other girls curtsy across the stage while showing off their flowers. Okay I may have struggled a teensy tiny little bit with insecurity as a teen. But the tradition continued to annoy me even when I transitioned from student to teacher. I remember my first Valentine's Day as a teacher when my class was interrupted to hand some popular girl a flower that would soon die. I stood there thinking "Oh Crap. They still do this. Seriously?!" (And I also secretly wondered if I would get one.)

But here's the thing, the idea that we only celebrate love one day out of the year annoys me even more than fake carnation popularity contests. And then on the one day that we do celebrate love, the fact that the celebration is so focused on romantic love annoys me even more. And I know everyone says that's not what V-Day is all about, but really, try explaining that to the people who don't have significant others to buy dying carnations for.  And I have a significant other to celebrate with, but luckily we both think this holiday is not the best; therefore, we use it as an excuse to compete in buying the other one the funniest card and seeing who laughs the hardest. And by funniest I mean raunchiest. And we haven't exchanged yet this year, but I'm pretty sure I'm gonna win.

And please don't misunderstand, I definitely think love is worth celebrating. And I did enjoy watching my children cover each other with hugs and kisses this morning and tell each other what their siblings mean to them. That is definitely worth some celebration. Just the fact that Isaac was hugging Emma Grace rather than hitting her in the head with his wet pull-up was worth celebration. But I think love is worth celebrating every. single. day.

Listen to this:

"If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have no love, I gain nothing."
1 Corinthians 3:1-3

Read it again.
Holy Cow. Even if I have faith to move mountains, but no love, I am NOTHING. Even if I gave everything I owned to the poor and gave myself up, but don't love, I gain NOTHING.

You know that book I just quoted has a lot of "rules". Many of them are considered pretty strange in today's world: things like don't wear gold jewelry, or braid your hair, or work on Sunday, or give vague and cryptic facebook statuses that nobody can understand (okay I may have made that last one up), but you know what the number one commandment is?

Yup. You guessed it. To Love.

"Jesus replied: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.' "
Matthew 22:37-39

Hhhmmmmm, so the greatest thing we're called to do is love. Maybe somebody tore the page out of my bible that talks about it, but I haven't seen February 14th mentioned in there one time. And I may be going out on a limb here, but I'm thinking if I AM nothing and GAIN nothing without love, I may want to celebrate it more than one day a year whether I have a significant other or a carnation or so many carnations that I'm choking on the carnation stench. I may want to wake up every day and greet those around me with hugs and kisses and love. Because every morning that I wake up, I'm greeted with love. Even on days that I least deserve it, God loves me. Actually, especially on days that I least deserve it, He loves me. And that rocks my socks off.

So enjoy your Valentine's Day. Seriously. Celebrate the crap out of the love you have for your significant other and your children and your parents and your friends. But most of all celebrate the love He has for you, because dude, you are loved. And that is worth celebrating today and tomorrow and maybe even again on Thursday.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Shout Out

This is a birthday shout out to my sista.

You know the one. I think I've mentioned her on here once or twice before....

Our family was eating lunch with friends the other day after church and Todd made a joke about how often SE (my sister) and I text/talk to each other. The friend said, "do you talk/text every day?"

Todd (laughing): Every day? You mean how many times a day?

Friend: You talk to your sister multiple times a day?!

Me: Ummmmmm yes. Why? Is that unhealthy or weird or something?

Friend: I guess not. I just must not like my sister as much as you like yours.

You must not, friend, because I freaking love mine.

But here's the thing, blog readers, before you judge me on how often I talk to my sister and the possibly unhealthy dependence we have on one another, there are just some important conversations that one has with their sister that they can't have with other people. Like the one we had yesterday for example.  And yes, I do realize she might kill me for putting this on my blog, and yes Todd was listening and rolling his eyes at us the whole time, but it's just too funny not to share and it may explain why we talk so much.... Because dude, this girl makes me laugh. And in case you didn't know this about me already, I really like to laugh.

SE: I went to the dollar store today to grab some things and did you know they sell pregnancy tests there?!

Me: Do you need pregnancy tests right now?

SE: No, but they were only a dollar and you know how I like to pee on sticks.

Me: This is true. But you know you have sticks in your backyard, right?

SE: True.
Me: You could put a whole pile of kindling in your bathroom and just pee on as many free sticks as you want.

SE: Yeah, and then I could draw lines on them with a sharpie and they would look like pregnancy tests.

Me: Good idea, SE. Good idea.

So Happy Last Year in Your Twenties, Sarah Ellen!

Sorry I just told the whole world few people that read this blog about your age and your bathroom habits. Ha ha. Hey at least two of those sticks brought you news of the cuties above.

We miss you.

And as usual, I'll talk to you soon......

(if you'll still talk to me after this.)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Superhero Homework

Even superheroes have to do homework.

Thanks for the genuine smile, Emma Grace.
It is quite lovely. Seriously.

Monday, February 6, 2012

I was Running.....

Running is real and relatively simple…but it ain't easy.
--Mark Will-Weber

I can't believe I'm about to publicly age myself like this, but here goes. This month marks a special anniversary in my life. It is one that the rest of the world would probably think is very stupid, but this is my blog and personal blogs are obviously narcissistic since they are about the person writing them, so whatevs.......Happy 20th to me.

 Twenty years ago this month was the first time I tied on a pair of running shoes for the purpose in which they were intended.

And I sucked at it. In fact I sucked so bad that I didn't even make the junior high track team. And my brother had been the number one half miler at the same school a few years before. Ouch. And if that wasn't bad enough, my brother's coach at the high school called the junior high coach and begged him to let me just practice with the team to prepare for cross country the next fall. So yes, even though I didn't make the team and didn't compete or even have a uniform, I still went to practice every day and watched people lap me. And if you don't think that was humiliating for a junior high girl then you have clearly never been a junior high girl or known a junior high girl. Let's just say that I'm sure I learned a valuable life lesson in that season but I don't remember what it was, because looking back, all I remember is sheer humiliation. Of course at the end of the season, the coach realized that he had made a huge mistake and put me in the final race and I led my team to victory after going toe to toe in the final lap of the mile with the top runner in the state......Ha ha I wish. But this isn't Hollywood. Although if that had happened, I would definitely want either Reese Witherspoon or Claire Danes to play me in the movie.

Anyway - suffice to say, that definitely did not happen.

"The greatest pleasure in life, is doing the things people say we cannot do."
-- Walter Bagehot

But something major did happen.

I started a lifelong love that most people don't understand for putting one foot in front of the other and pushing myself to do the best I can do. Did I improve after that initial humiliating season? Of course. Was I the best in the State? Nope. Not even close. Do I still push myself despite the fact that I could once run a sub 6:00 mile and now.........well, let's just say I haven't been close to a 6:00 mile in a lllooooonnnnnnggggggg time.  Yup. As long as these legs are still able, I'm going to keep right on abusing them and praying that insurance will cover the knee and hip replacement surgeries one day.

After high school, I continued to run with a friend in college. After college, I got a job teaching and became a cross country, indoor, and outdoor track coach. After staying home to have babies, I just kept running.

"My feeling is that any day I am too busy to run is a day that I am too busy."
--John Bryant

 Running is so many things to me.

I run to eat.
I run to be with God.
I run to have free therapy sessions with friends.
I run to listen to music.
I run to listen to nature.
I run to get out of the house.
I run pushing strollers.
I run by myself.
I run to think.
I run to daydream.
I run to pray.
I run for causes.
I run for no reason at all.
I run short distances.
I run long distances.
I run anywhere.
I run whenever I have the time to tie my shoes and squeeze one in.
I run because it feels good.
I run even when it doesn't feel good.
I run to run.
I run to feel capable.
I run to stretch my legs.
I run through injury.
I run in spite of weather.
I run to sweat.
I run because I like to run.
I run because I love the way I feel after a run.
Dang some days I don't even know why I run, but I do.
(And yes I feel like quoting the Forest Gump movie right now.....but I'll spare you.)

I run because it literally changes my perspective on life.

I run because when I run it's just me and the pavement and nobody expects anything from me. There is nobody on the sidelines cheering me on or urging me to go faster. There's only the challenge I've put before myself to get out there, to put one foot in front of the other, to push through the hill so I can coast on the other side, to tack on one more mile, to surge for thirty seconds, to do a negative split, to do whatever it is I push myself to do. And sometimes I push myself to do nothing except survive the run. And there is something so freeing in that.  I know when I get home there will be expectations for me. There will be dishes to be washed and clothes to be folded and kids to be loved and a husband to support, and those are all great things, but for those few miles, it is just me and God. And that pavement? It just twists and turns and leads me in a certain direction without expecting anything back. And there is beauty in that.

"For me, like so many others, running is the answer. Out on the road it is just you, the pavement, and your will."

Thursday, February 2, 2012


Ever wondered what Isaac would look like with my blonde hair?

Well, now you know.

You're welcome.