Friday, April 29, 2011

Royal Reflections

Today Kate Middleton married Prince William of Wales. It's been a somber week around here with the terrible devastation our Tuscaloosa friends are facing from a massive tornado. I was glad for a happy distraction. I'm still processing all this prince and princess stuff as it relates to raising our boys and praying for their wives, but I don't want to forget how this morning unfolded, so here it is.

I very clearly remember watching Princess Diana arriving at the church in the glass coach in 1981. I also remember Sarah Ferguson's train with the letter "A" embroidered on it in beadwork. And I remember getting up one Labor Day weekend to watch Diana's funeral procession. I'm not sure what it is about the pomp and circumstance of these events that draws me in so, but draw me it does.

So I set my alarm for 4:00 AM, and made it out of bed by 4:45. I watched from the sofa as William and his brother Harry arrived at Westminster Abbey. I dozed a bit between his and Kate's arrival, but I did wake in time to see her ride with her father from her hotel to the church. It should surprise no one that I was alone in my viewing of the festivities. I suppose if I had a husband who was jumping out of bed with me, anxious to see the pomp and circumstance and comment on the hats and her dress, I would have reason to worry. Fortunately, this is not the case.

I think two of my favorite moments were centered around the groom. I loved when Wills walked into the Abbey and stood visiting with his family members. Such a normal groom-like thing to do. The best moment of the morning though was when he looked at Kate upon her arrival at the altar and told her she was beautiful. It seems he has turned out much better than his father.

I watched the ceremony alone for the first thirty minutes. Then Jonathan woke up and drank his milk while we watched the rest. Brent came in to eat his cereal and grumble about what-was-the-big-deal-we-don't-even-know-these-people-who-cares-about-this-are-her-parents-footing-the-bill stuff and nonsense.

When the bigger boys woke up, I told them there were a real prince and princess on TV getting married. Coleman didn't say much, but Andrew was interested and full of questions. I explained to him what was going on, and then we watched the couple emerge from the Abbey. I told him my favorite part was the carriage ride to the palace. He asked me about the uniform William was wearing and why he had on gloves.

By this time, I needed to get breakfast started and lunches made. Andrew kept watching and called me when the couple got to the palace. We watched together and I explained a few more things to him. As if he knew what his reaction as a male was supposed to be, he later declared it all, "Ridiculous!"

We ate breakfast, got ready for school, and I let them watch something else for a bit while I got dressed. Then we turned it back on to see them come out on the balcony for their kiss. By this time, Andrew knew which lady was the queen and spotted her quickly. I was putting Jonathan's shoes on as we watched. I noticed Jonathan waving back to the royal family from my lap. His face was beaming.

Coleman was entranced by Princess Kate, and said, "There's Mommy!" Made my YEAR I tell you! After William kissed her, Coleman came over and tried to kiss me right on the mouth several times. I successfully convinced him to kiss my cheek instead. As the couple turned to walk back inside the palace for their reception, Andrew said, "And now they're happily ever after."

And I do hope they are.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Easter Weekend - Part 2

When we got home from church, Brent herded the yahoos into a bedroom while I set out their Easter Baskets. The big deals this year were new fishing poles for Andrew and Coleman, and a big blue ball for Jon Jon.

When I was ready, here they came. I knew Andrew and Coleman would be excited and tear right into their baskets, but Jonathan surprised me. He came running in right behind them, went straight to his chair and started unloading his stash. Just like he's been doing it for years.

The big boys immediately wanted their fishing poles out and assembled, but Jonathan brought me everything in his basket and held it up for me to see.

He was very excited about his new sippy cups. He pointed to Mickey and said, "Mow Mow!" (Rhymes with Cow Cow.)

Then while lunch readied, we tried to get a sweet Eastery shot of them in their clothes. When we set Andrew and Jonathan down, Jonathan put his hands on his knees and smiled so big. But Coleman would not hurry up and sit down. So by the time Coleman was convinced to be in the pictures, the following was the best we could get.

I think next year I'm going to take my camera to church and as soon as we walk in the door ask someone to take a picture of all five of us together.

That afternoon, Brent suggested we go swimming. Since our pool is heated, it was great! This was Jonathan's first time to really enjoy the pool, and he had a blast!

That evening after supper the boys did a little casting from the deck. They did well. Brent only had to walk down to the yard to retrieve a pole one time.

Jonathan carried his box of Whoppers around until bathtime.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Easter Weekend - Part 1

We had a fun, busy,and exhausting Easter weekend. Here are the pictures from Friday and Saturday.

The boys were out of school on Friday, so we dyed our eggs that morning. I set up the coloring stations on the bar and Andrew and Coleman hopped up there to do the eggs. Jonathan wanted to see, so I put him in his high chair and pushed him over. He was not happy that they were stirring something in cups and he was not.

So I gave him an empty plastic cup and a spoon and he was as happy as could be.

Friday night we had a tee ball game, and a sitter came for Jonathan. We got home late, got showers for the boys, and got to bed. We woke up early Saturday morning and got ready for our egg hunt at Nana and Pop-O's. The cousins, Chris and Margie, Granny and Grandaddy, and Gigi and Papack were there. It was a really fun, action packed day. Nana had a photographer friend come and make some family pictures of all of us. We cannot wait to see how they turned out!

Jonathan and Gigi with his lunch.

All the cousins had so much fun on the swings and in the bounce house. Pop-O had even set up the tent for them to play in. When we drove up, Andrew saw the tent and said, "Oh boy! They even set the tent up and everything!"

After the pictures, Papack and Granny had a nice visit in the kitchen waiting on lunch.

We had a cookout for lunch. Here are the big cousins. Nolan and Jon Jon were napping by the time everything was ready.

After his nap, Jon Jon was right back in the thick of things!

Then we sent the cousins inside so Pop-O could "hide" the eggs. This was Jonathan's first time to hunt eggs. I held his hand and when everyone took off, we started out toward the eggs. I felt like the man at the pool of Bethesda must have felt. Every time we got close to an egg, a cousin would run up and scoop it before Jonathan could get it. I finally picked him up and ran over to an undiscovered egg pile. He took his basket and knew just what to do.

It was a great day and we were all exhausted by the time we made it home. The yahoos got baths and in bed as quick as we could so we would be ready for church the next morning.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

From the Yahoos!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Opening Day: Clippers vs. Suns

Saturday was Opening Day for tee ball. They had planned a big parade and ceremony for that morning, but we had bad storms Friday night and apparently it was too muddy so it was canceled. Our game was scheduled for 2pm, and there was a chicken-que for lunch. We got to the field around 12:30 for lunch, and then enjoyed the game. Here are the pictures from the day.

The minute we got to the field, Andrew asked to put on his eye black. Coleman got to wear some too.

Coach Mitch brought our jerseys to the field with him.

Our lunch came with half of a smoked chicken, chips, and a moonpie.

Catching a little snooze before taking the field.

Coleman asked for a treat from the "snack store" so Gigi was happy to oblige.

warming up

We really like our coach. He is a mild mannered man, and has obviously coached before. He told our players that we were playing base ball. He meant that as long as the ball was in the outfield, they could keep running, but when the ball came back to the infield, they needed to stop at the next base. In tee ball, there are very few catches made, and a lot of wild throws. So a player could easily get a home run just from errors by the other team. Mitch said we're not playing in the major leagues, so there's no need to run up the score. Even though we don't keep one.

The players don't have permanent positions, so for this game Andrew was assigned catcher and third baseman. The catcher position in tee ball doesn't really do much, but he was very engaged the entire inning.

When the team took the field and Andrew got behind the plate, Coleman stepped up to the fence and said, "I want you to do a good job Andrew! You can do it!" Andrew gave him a big thumbs up and a smile.

The entire line up bats each inning, so we got some good practice in. He made one great stop at third, and then we had a hilarious event. The ball went past the pitcher and toward Andrew. There was a runner coming from second to third. As Andrew was stooping to field the ball, Mitch and Brent started yelling for him to tag the runner. They meant after he had the ball in his glove. Andrew left the ball on the ground and immediately went and tagged the runner like they were playing freeze-tag. Needless to say the runner was safe at third, and all the parents and coaches had a good laugh. Mitch commented, "Well at least he listens!"

I was so proud of him. No picking daisies or watching airplanes from our boy!

Here he is on third getting ready to come home. He ran so fast when he got a hit. I think he absolutely loved it.

crossing home plate

Our team did really well with fielding the balls. Both teams scored lots of runs, but our team was able to get several of their players out. We were also proud that our boys didn't play "swarm" ball. They knew (and remembered) to let the person closest to the ball go for it.

Papack got a great video of Andrew's first at bat. He got on base and scored every inning. It was just a great day!