Saturday, November 29, 2008

It was the best of days and the worst of games

The children of Timbers Court (Aaron, William and Sophia) spent the day with Mary today so that we adults could all go to Kansas City to see the MU v. KU game at Arrowhead Stadium. I had won the tickets and limo ride as a doorprize at a Boone Hospital Foundation event. So the four of us have been giddy about the trip for months.

I'm not sure if it was obvious that we don't normally ride in limos. What do you think?

We made it safely to the stadium and had already enjoyed a full tailgate of our own. Stan was our driver and he took this picture for us. We planned to have one taken with him but we were too distracted by the cold and our broken hopes after the game.

Once we got to the stadium, we said a quick hello to Seth and Angie, who also had tickets to the Showdown. Then we made our way to our seats on Row 11, next to this guy. He was incredibly grumpy. Giving us looks before the game started and saying nothing. He moved shortly after. I can't imagine why.

The snow came down pretty heavily in the second half. We were wet and cold, but we had lots of hope for a big comeback. The game was a rollercoaster of emotions that came to a screaching halt and tipped over with the now infamous FOURTH AND SEVEN.

Terrible though it was, we were warm and cozy on the drive home as Stan returned us safely to Timbers Court. And it's never a bad day when it ends with a dance with Sophia.

Friday, November 28, 2008


We spent Thanksgiving in the Kansas City area with Erick's family as we typically do. Wednesday night, we stayed with Andy, Julie and Alexis. She's about three months older than Sophia and they had some fun together. Most of this fun was had while watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. Like most little girls, they loved the opportunity to dance and twirl for an audience.

They got along pretty well, but they were mostly just two cute little blonds who were used to having their turf alone, so they did have their challenges.

As always, Sophia was comfortable in the big crowd of family Thanksgiving. She had lots of fun by herself,

and playing with her cousins.

I hope everyone's Thanksgiving was as happy!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Our Nativity

Yesterday I was feeling particularly Christmasy, so we got down all of our Christmas stuff and put out everything but the tree. We'll save that for the big reveal on Friday. Sophia was very happy to see the Nativity set. She loved it last year, and this one appears to be no different. She's not as keen on kissing the Baby Jesus this year, but she has lots of fun with him.

Something I didn't realize about the Savior. He loves to slide.

Once I moved the scene to the window, she was particularly keen on rearranging the characters. There were some pretty interesting situations taking place throughout the day, and a great deal of sleeping.

It didn't take long until her favorite ornament, the Frog Prince, took over Joseph's role in the Nativity. Pretty soon, Joseph was just an observer and the Frog Prince was standing guard with Mary.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Something for Now

With all the illness in the house this week, there hasn't been much that we'd want on the internet. So...I thought I'd share a random thought. It seems I've been having a lot of those lately. Maybe I'll share a few more another day.

When Sophia was a baby like this,

I used to hate it when she got passed around. I was never nervous about germs or anything (big shock). I just hated it that she didn't smell like us any more. I remember thinking at the time that it must be some sort of weird bonding thing. Even writing now sounds pretty strange. But when you hold your tiny baby and they smell like someone else's cologne or perfume or body wash, it just doesn't seem right. Now I can never slow her down enough to smell her. Back then, it would always end like this

Friday, November 21, 2008


Well, after Erick and I fell victim to whatever illness attacked Sophia, we are very grateful to see this week come to an end. Sophia slept the full night last night for the first time in weeks, and I actually feel better today.

Sophia, on the other hand, is still battling something. I can't quite figure it out. All I know is that her voice has not left that whiny octave only a parent can fully appreciate. Without anything planned for the weekend, we should be able to all bounce back with reasonable certainty in the next couple of days.

Just wish us luck making it through the first and hopefully worst sickness of our season.

"It will be the best winter ever!" I'm really working on getting that one down. It just never comes out without a giggle - or sarcastic sneer.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


We've been relegated to a day of Shrek and Madagascar today because Sophia is recovering from some sort of stomach flu. She was sick six times in two hours last night, then slept fitfully in our bed.

I'm tired.

Trying not to be grumpy.

She's feeling better today, but I can't get very far.

Hoping this isn't indicative of our winter.

Monday, November 17, 2008


This afternoon, we enjoyed a few minutes outside in the chilly fall air. After a trying trip to Walmart, where I ended up buying a package of whole wheat pitas for no other reason than that Sophia bit the package open (yes, she is a wild animal), I was glad for the chance to blow off some steam outside. I got a little (very little, actually) work done in the garage while Sophia played outside.

Then I glanced over and noticed the look on her face. She may have still been an animal, but at least she was free.

No longer caged in the house or the cart, she was just ecstatic to be outside. It is going to be a long winter, but maybe we'll get these little reprieves now and then.

Anyway, the point is, I was grateful for a breath of fresh air in the midst of a . . . Monday.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Sweet and/or Sassy

Yesterday was another one of those days with a toddler. You just never know what's going to come out of that mouth. Sweet or sassy. One moment, she told me, "I love you, too, Mama," even when I hadn't told her first. The next minute, she was yelling with her angry face about who knows what. Probably that I wasn't doing precisely what she wanted.

Here are a couple of captured moments from our day. One moment with a scary pirate and another with a sweet great-granddaughter. She was calling my grandma, Momo. I'm not exactly sure what she's talking about, but I think she's asking about a present or something. . . it's still sweet, right?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

An Actual Normal Week

If I were to have a week that was without event or surprise, including interactions with Sophia, this would be it. It has been so "normal" that I realize how abnormal that really is. Not that we have a lot of crises around here or anything. We just seem to always have something unusual going on or Sophia seems to be going through a strange phase of some sort. This week, however, Sophia has been great. She has had a few low points, marked with unexplained tears, but she's largely been happy and easy. So that is why you haven't heard anything from me. I have been wracking my brain to come up with something interesting, but it would be a stretch. The interesting thing is that normalcy is possible. Hold out hope, and maybe it will happen for you one day too!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Goofy Girl

Monkey see, monkey do. When Blake was over last Friday, he put Sophia's drum on his head as a Jedi helmet, and this was Sophia's response. I was too late to snap a shot of the first monkey, but here's the second.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Probably the most I've ever done in 1 day

Saturday was packed. We started the day trying to get family photos at Creative Photo in Columbia. That experience was worth its own entire post, so I may get around to that some time. Let's just say that Sophia was more than a little stubborn, and the pictures we got were in spite of her best efforts to appear disinterested.

After our morning together, we dropped Sophia off with Grandmary so we could have a day of fun with our friends. We met Brian and Janelle at Living Canvas Tattoo downtown. Yep.

We each have a permanent reminder of our enjoyable day courtesy of Peter the artist. His work was fabulous, although painful.

Here is Erick's finished product.

And mine.

But we weren't finished yet! After getting our new artwork, we bundled it all up to head out to watch the Tigers destroy the Wildcats.

With a windchill of 29 degrees at kickoff, we only made it to halftime and watched the rest of the game in the warmth of the Chandler home. It was a great way to end an incredibly busy day. Now we're just keeping our artwork clean and trying to convince Sophia that she doesn't need a tattoo.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

A Brief Moment

One of my favorite things that happens is when you're driving along, probably sitting at a stoplight, singing loudly to the radio, when a stranger pulls up next to you or turns in front of you singing to the same song. It's a brief moment in time. Blink and you'll miss it. Just a glimmer of the realization that while I'm living and breathing and singing, millions of other people are sharing this experience with me. For some reason, these tiny little glimpses into what are really insignificant moments, become much more to me. They become some sort of glue holding our experiences together. Weird, I know. Anyway, just wanted to share that one with you and ask you this question.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Impasse

We should be at TumbleBees right now. Instead we're at home listening to Mickey Mouse. Sophia has been having a little trouble following directions lately (insert sarcastic laugh here). So today when we began talking about going to TumbleBees, I asked, as I always do, "Will you listen to Bob today?" This time, instead of answering yes, even though it's not always true, she said, "Nope." I believed her. Of course I'm probably just as disappointed. Getting out is always a relief. So, I tried again. We talked for a while about what she might do there today and that she wanted to go. Okay, let's try again. Would she listen to Bob today? She replied "No, Mom," with the tone that said, "Weren't you listening five minutes ago, Woman?"

So, here we are. Home. The photo above is real time. Look into those eyes. . .

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

Another Homecoming

This last weekend, Erick and I returned to our old stomping grounds of Point Lookout, Missouri - better known as College of the Ozarks in Branson. If you're not familiar, it's a work-study college with conservative roots and lots of rules. After spending only a couple of hours back on the grounds, I was reminded why, other than the debt-free education, I was willing to sacrifice some personal freedom for four years. The campus is seriously beautiful. Fall was always my favorite there, too. The school is just above Lake Taneycomo in the Ozarks, and it is nearly always a feast for the eye.

Here is where I stayed for the first year. My room was on the third floor, just to the left of the small bathroom window in the middle. It was the smallest living space I've ever seen. But it was fun. The fountain to the right was my favorite part of this room. Risha and I left our windows open as long as we could just so we could sleep to the sound of that fountain.

During our short Homecoming tour, we got to see a few of our old friends. Sophia was excited to see Baby Jacqueline, since we haven't seen them since they moved away from CoMo.

I was particularly excited to see Cindy and Jimmy Kinser. Not only because they have a brand new beautiful addition in Josie, but also because I haven't seen Cindy (my roommate senior year) since our weddings in June of 2002! Not cool.

It was great to walk around a little and see some places that really changed my life. This is the chapel where Erick and I were married.

This is Point Lookout. I cut out all the people reminiscing on the spot, so I didn't get the entire vista. This location meant a lot of things to a lot of people. Some folks knew it better as Point Makeout, but for me, it was a place where I could try to sort out my future plans and just take a moment to commune with nature, God and myself.

Here's the way Sophia likes to do just that.