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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

So Wonderful!!

Who doesn't love wonders?  You know a cause of astonishment, amazement- like the Wonders of the World, or Wonder Woman or someone saying "You're so wonderful!"  What's not to like about wonders?  I even get a tinge of excitement when I hear my kids say "Hey, I wonder. . . "  I bend my ear to their thoughts, because it's a sign to me that their wheels are turning and thoughts are cranking out.  Love when they become independent, terrific thinkers- especially when they are trying to solve a problem that I cannot piece together myself!  (One of the reasons I have so many kids. . . more minds to keep me on track!) 

I also love being able to write "Wonderful!" across the top of my childrens' graded papers- as I'm sure they are happy to see it - much better than the "Fix!" or "Do again!"
It's no wonder that a top selling bread is Wonder Bread.  With a name like that, what kid couldn't resist it?  Of course the wonderful yellow, blue and red circles calling out to the yearning stomachs, promising a mouthful of soft, white tasty goodness.  Ahhhh.   Okay, maybe I'm a bit obsessed- my Mother rarely bought Wonder Bread- we ate wheat bread (A healthy choice I've carried on, so my own children salivate when as a rare treat I place a loaf in my shopping cart.)

Oh, how about music- that oldie, but goodie, "S' Wonderful. . S' Marvelous. . .that you should care for me. . ."
Or even older~"I Wonder why I Love You Like I do"
My ALL time favorite wonder song though is "What a Wonderful World" - Louis Armstrong.  This song brings back memories of  high school dances- which in and of themselves were not so wonderful, but it was always the last song played at each dance and just left you ready to leave with a light heart as the lights came on and everyone chimed in to sing the lyrics.  Good song!

Movies- no brainier- "Wonderful Life"  This movie is such a classic- brought out each Christmas season at our home.  Plus, there are so many take offs of this movie- many very, very good, including Shrek Forever (my favorite Shrek).

With all these wonders, are you wondering where I'm going? 

It's to the antipodean of everything wonderful about wonder. 

Two weekends back I became a wonder in the most loathsome way.  I was considered a "medical wonder."  Much to the demise of what was supposed to be a family day at a church festival, I spent the day in the E.R. with an extreme pain in my abdomen and a handful of hospital workers scratching their heads and saying "I wonder. . . "

This is not what wonder is supposed to be!  Wonder is supposed to be laughter, proud feelings, yummy bread and feel-good music! 

Here is what I do wonder about- how come it is so easy to cross that point of embarrassment to the point of lose all caution to the wind when it comes to pain?  It must be something about the hospital gown with the slit down the back.  It's never going to mean something wonderful is going to happen!  Okay, I did don the gown 7 times to give birth- and that is wonderful!- but the modesty grows it's own wings and flies out the window when the gown goes on.  And there is no wonder is all the needle pricking, poking, prodding and marvelous contraptions that get hooked up to your body when you suit up in the hospital finery. 

And so, after many tests and head scratching, the E.R. doctor, as he is about to release me, says
"I wonder. . . maybe you had a kidney stone." 

O great, this probably means more tests- No thanks!  He must of read my mind.  After all, I wasn't in any pain anymore.  In fact, my pain had actually subsided before I was even called out of the E.R. waiting room! Wonderful, huh?!?  Maybe it was the pleading look in my eyes that convinced him to release me.  Although he wasn't going to confirm anything, he did feel that my tests lead to conclude it was kidney stones.  "But be sure to follow up with your primary doctor." 

I was not surprised at all when my primary doctor said- "I wonder. . ."  Unfortunately, it was not the same wonder as the E.R. doctor- she just wondered what could have happened, because she wasn't convinced that it was kidney stones.    

WONDERFUL!

(Sigh!) As I run back to doctor check-ups, enjoy the time "on rest", and continue to wonder, I'm so glad that I am a wonder to our Lord.  It's easier to face bad wonders knowing that the All-Wonderful has me right where I am supposed to be!

Attempting to survive myself,
Mary

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

We've searched High and Low!

If there is one thing my family is good at it is looking for things.  Notice, I didn't say FINDING things; that is not our forte!  We take an opportunity nearly every three weeks to go on a great search- three weeks is amount of days we have before the library books are due.  For most people keeping track of library books probably isn't a big deal.  What do most normal people check out per library visit?  Five, maybe ten books?  We are not normal.  I have gotten better, but at any given time, we'll check out anywhere from 30 to 50 books, sometimes more.  We have an addiction to library books; not that this is a bad thing.  I like to spend at least an hour a day reading "picture books" to the younger kids.  Just a habit I'd started with the Jane Austen Wanna Be when she was little and continue to enjoy that time together even now. 

Turning 5 in our family is a big deal- this is the age when a child gets to get his/her own library card.  Of course this also means he/she accepts a bigger chunk of the blame when a book is lost, and that is not so good!  To say a frequent calling upon St. Anthony is heard from our home is an understatement.  I expect when we reach the pearly gates, each of of us will receive a tongue lashing from the multitude of times St. Anthony had to take a break from praising the Almighty to guide us to where the lost library book rests. 

The Clown has earned the nickname of "St. Anthony"- because she is really good at finding lost things.  I'm always calling upon her when something has gone astray.  She has a good turn around time!  This is also why I ask her to find things that I have lost in my mind.  So many times I will leave a room, only to stop and holler her name to remind me why I had left the room to began with.  She is also good with unwritten shopping lists, telephone numbers and keeping track of sibblings' forgotten punishments. . . hmmmm shouldn't be surprised about that last one.

What is this all leading to?  I had a point, but I lost it : )   No, the point is I have been searching for a family hobby that would occupy a minimal amount of time and include all of us- from the 2 year old to the 45 year old (see prior post: "Happy Birthday to Me!").  I had all but given up- especially since we are not really sports oriented, not  so musically talented that we could play anything remotely recognizable to any human, and don't possess the patience of Job, nor the wealth of Midas.  Yet, about about 2 weeks ago, I stumbled upon an idea (probably under the guidance of St. Anthony) that looked like it was a hobby made just for us.

This activity is called Geocaching.  It is also known as Letter Boxing.  See the  following link: http://www.geocaching.com/seek/nearest.aspx?lat=39.01103&lng=-95.777829&dist=5
This is a hobby where you use your GPS Navigation Device (yes, of course we have one- my husband's solution to keeping us from getting lost around town) to input a set of coordinates.  Then, piling into the car, you follow the GPS to the set point and find the cache that is hidden.  Wow!  A hobby involving looking for something that is hidden?!?  It should be called "Mooradian-ing."

What makes the search fun is that the end result could be a bit of a treasure- a medium/large size cache holds little goodies that you can trade out, or disguises that you don and photograph to upload as proof of your successful find.  There are also little/microscopic size caches that usually just hold a log that you sign and date. 

Our first few attempts were nothing shy of a complete failure (St. Anthony?!?).  But, on the 3rd attempt, we found the needle in the haystack and you'd thought we'd found the cure for cancer!  Considering we weren't using our GPS correctly, it was on the level of brain surgery.  It felt so much more of an accomplishment too because we weathered 102 degree heat,  around a 3/10 mile walk and overgrown grass that harbored overgrown grasshoppers (at least according to The Jane Austen Wanna Be). 

A round of root beer floats proved to be the best way to celebrate (which coincidentaly, we also included the celebrating of finding a lost library book).  Lots of bragging ensued, along with posting our pictures on the website.  It appears that an answer to our hobby search has been found!  I'm actually quite surprised that The boy and The Cute One Who Always get Free Stuff at Garage Sales were the two children that started begging to go Geocaching again- especially since they were the first two to give up searching when we were out in the field.  Perhaps is just that they ejnoyed the time together we had as a family, with a common goal at hand.  Maybe it was they were relieved to break of the regular routine to get out of the house.  Possibly they just liked seeing The Jane Austen Wanna Be get flustered and mad at the GPS in what we call the Geocaching Rage.  I'm not sure, but I know that we are building memories and having fun.

Thank you Lord that you don't need to work so hard to keep track of us, your children.  I can rest knowing that no matter where my children or I am, you are keeping close track of us. 

Now, if I could just get a fixed coordinates on each of our checked out library books. . .

Finding and Surviving Myself,
Mary