Monday, February 28, 2005

One Year Ago Exactly

...our little Tiny Tot was born. Except he wasn't tiny...He weighed 10 lbs 14 oz, 2 oz less than Musical did. Though I didn't see it, I'm told the little man was delivered into his papa's eager hands at 8:47 p.m., Feb. 28, 2004. Our midwife had helped T.T.'s big ol' linebacker shoulders through, then The Ram caught him. Ahhh, SWEETNESS!!! Exhiliration!!! RELIEF! LOL! The only thing that was missing was.....KRISPY KREMEs!!!! When T.T. was just a minute old, the Grand Rams brought in Lovable and Musical (Carnival was already there...) at which point I practically ordered my wonderful father-in-law to go get donuts! (Yes, I'm so embarrassed now, but at the time, I wasn't in my usually-half-way-right mind). It was such a celebration. There were several folks at the midwife's house on unrelated business, but everyone knows that K.W.'s house is about BABIES!!!! and we had several people stick their heads in the door and congratulate us on "the latest model." It's fairly impossible to believe that was a whole year ago. It was a long, difficult birth. It took everything I, The Ram, my 2 midwives and the doula had. But it was amazing. We had people all over the world praying for us. That night, The Ram, T.T. and I cuddled down for the night all toasty warm together. The Ram was not delegated to an uncomfortable recliner for the night; for the first time, he got to spend our babe's first night in a warm bed. It was amazing. A year later, it's still amazing. Happy Birthday, Tiny Tot! For a peek at our midwife, see

Right About Now, One Year Ago...

...the contractions were pretty much stopped...I'd been fully dilated all day...WHERE'S THAT BABY?!?! The midwife pulled one more trick out of her sleeve...

One Year Ago, Right About Now...

...I was fully dilated, ready to push....we were thinking we'd have a babe in arms within the hour...

One Year Ago, THIS Minute (or so)

...We were hauling our things in from the van, at our midwife's house...I was dripping amniotic fluid all the way...After we got settled, our midwife checked my progress (I'd been having major contractions). I was 7 cm! We were well on the way to holding our baby boy!...

One Year Ago, THIS Minute...

...We had finally gotten in the van and started driving south...

One Year Ago This Minute

The Ram and I were rushing around, throwing things into a suitcase, hearts pounding...

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Grab Your Underbelly!

Hello, F.O.T.E.s!
Wow! The rain is coming down in torrents here. Where's that umbrella? A funny: The Grandma Ram is a retired kindergarten teacher. She tells a story of a student she once had who called umbrellas "underbellies." Tee hee!
We had a small thunderstorm last night at 2:00, which promptly sent all 3 girls scurrying into my bed. Reminded me of the scene in _The Sound of Music_ where the children all gathered in Maria's bedroom because of a storm. However, *I* did not feel like hopping out of bed and dancing around the room, singing "My Favorite Things." ;-) No, I relinquished my spot and went downstairs to make sure there were no watches/warnings on the t.v. Thank goodness, there were none. I went back up to bed and wriggled in between two or three children, who grunted their displeasure. (They had fallen asleep when I was downstairs.) After a couple hours of hanging my feet off the bed, trying to find a less-than-torturous position to sleep in, I gave up. When Tiny Tot woke up at 4 a.m., I decided he and I would retreat to the couch. That was a great idea, and I slept well until time to get up. Ah...what a night! LOL
Right now here, it looks like it does right before sunrise. Pretty dark. And it's after 8 a.m. The rain is coming down steadily. I could easily lie back down and sleep. But, no, I will press on. I've had my coffee anyway...If I went to sleep now, I might have another weird dream like I did last week...In that dream, I was visiting a nearby Goodwill Store. Not unusual. Except this time, you had to climb in and out of their front window. I was in the store, checking out and wondering how I was going to get out that window with 4 children and a load of goodies. LOL I woke up while I was still standing at checkout. Never did find out how that all turned out...
Well, I guess I'll go. The laundry is calling my name. "Would EWE please wash me?!" ;-)

Must run...Y'all keep your wool dry!
The Ewe

Quote of the Day: "Well, if they're going to that to learn to be gracious, you'd think they'd take their kids with them." Carnival, commenting on a radio spot, advertising babysitting for a church seminar about being a gracious woman.

Monday, February 14, 2005

My Heart is Singing! and Flashback

Hello, F.O.T.E.s! Happy St. Valentine's Day!
I don't know what the weather's like in *your* neck of the woods, but here it's over 60, sunny and gorgeous! My house is tidy, the windows are open, a slight breeze is venting out all the microbes that had settled here last week (yes, all 4 lambies had come down with a virus!). I had only a couple hours sleep last night, due to Musical coughing and the wind and rain howling outside. (Having been in a tornado a few years back, I surely do take notice of wind speed now.) Last night I was feeling a bit wistful, what with The Ram half a world away and the internet acting unreliable in his half. And it being Valentine's Day! But, listen Friends, a delivery guy showed up here right after lunch and brought the most beautiful dozen roses I ever saw. The girls retrieved that long box from him, and set about putting on a production to present me with them. Musical wasn't thoroughly convinced the flowers were from Daddy...she suggested maybe they were from the "nice man who brought them." I assured her the weren't from *that* man and that I'd never laid eyes on him before. Carnival joined in, saying, "Yes, Musical...that guy was from DHL (or whatever that new delivery company is) NOT UPS!" She pointed out that the UPS man had been here several times and I *had* laid eyes on *him.* Just to relieve the suspense, I opened the card attached to the flower box. "I am my Beloved's and My Beloved is mine." was The Ram. Sigh...I felt like a school girl. :-) Carnival helped me get the roses in water and we set them on the kitchen table. I'll take a picture to email to The Ram. What a Sweetheart.
So...after the flower fest, the girls zoomed back outside to finish up the project I'd assigned them for the day--cleaning out half of the garage. Now, Yes, You guessed it...the jun...I mean, the *treasures* shuttled out of the one half of the garage ended up in the other half of the garage, but my purpose was suited. Sometime over the weekend, the wind pushed in one of the garage windows, and I needed at least a clear path for the house's owners to get in to fix it. So, I put the Lambies on it and they did a fine job. If we can string together a few more days like today, we'll bring Tiny Tot out in the play pen and actually clean out the garage the right way. EEK!
Right now, the sun is shining bright and Lovable has Tiny Tot out on the back deck. Carnival and Musical are blowing bubbles and everyone is laughing. Ahhh...what a lovely day.
I did realize earlier that tonight will mark the exact one year anniversary of my splashing boiling hot spaghetti water on my 9 mo pregnant belly! The Grand Rams were staying with the Lambies and me while The Ram was on National Guard drill. We were concerned I might go into labor while he was gone across the state, so his parents came for the weekend. It was Valentine's night and I was making spaghetti. Grandpa Ram was reading from an animal magazine to the girls in the living room. Grandma Ram was (if I remember correctly) teaching Carnival about sewing. I was in the kitchen, simply loving my full, busy house. I was pretty distracted and went to stir the spaghetti--and OUCH! I burned my finger! A few seconds later, I felt the burn on my belly and ran into the bathroom and ripped off my shirt--along with a few layers of skin. The cotton shirt had held the water on my bulbous tum long enough to inflict a severe burn about a foot square. I started shaking and got very confused...later it was pointed out that I was probably beginning to go into shock. Grandma Ram took me to the emergency room (yes, the same place we took Musical when the possum bit her) My blood pressure was up and I was so afraid some obstetrician would come rushing in and decide I needed a C-section right then! It's a laughable thought now, but at the time I was scared. Instead, a really super doctor attended my wound, pulling off burnt, dead skin. I felt like such a loser...Who *can't* make spaghetti?!? LOL Anyway, I've still got a reminder of that night...right on my belly. Of course, the scar is kinda hard to see through the stretch marks and cellu-whatever, but the funny thing is that it is now only a few inches across. LOL Just like drawing on a blown up balloon then letting the air out.
Sigh...what a day. Life is good. My Ram may be thousands of miles away, but I feel him right here with me. We still get to talk very frequently, for which I thank my Heavenly Father multiple times each day. As soldier wives go, I've got it good. Well, must run...Got Valentine's Day spaghetti to make...Well, on second thought...maybe we'll go out. Y'all keep your wool dry! The Ewe Quote of the Day: "Tiny Tot, don't *EAT* the bubbles!!!"

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Cox's Tough-As-Whit Leather Army

Hello, F.O.T.E.s!
It's as cold as a cucumber here today.
You know, anyone who's known my mama more than a few minutes has probably heard some colorful expression escape her lips. She's never needed curse words to liven up a story or conversation--her "Momisms" have always been enough. Having grown up in IL, you'd expect I'd be a full-fledged Yankee (and many deep Southerners would say that *is* the case) but growing up in a family full of Tennesseans, I consider myself at least to have dual citizenship. Anyway, I've grown up hearing sayings that many consider unusual. Some sayings, I've learned, are unique to my mother...some are just general Southern sayings. Even the ones that are well-know Southern sayings have origins that are mostly obscure to me. For instance, *who* was Cox, anyway? And just *how big* *was* his army? And what's "whit" leather? Who was it that discovered just how nervous cats *are* in a roomful of rockers? Also, at times, I've been weak as a kitten or crazy as a "bessie bug." What *is* a "bessie bug?" Friends, I'd sure appreciate it if you could enlighten me on these issues...also, feel free to add some of your favorite sayings in the comments--the "obscurer" the better. I sure would hate for these sage words to be "gone with the wind."
Well, gotta get "back to my rat killin'..." Y'all keep your wool dry...
The Ewe

Quote of the Day: "OOOH!!! CHOCOLATE!!!!!" the Lambies, opening the Valentine's Day gift The Ram had delivered here today. :-)

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Ladybugs, Ladybugs Fly Away Home...

...the sheep's in the meadow, the cow's in, wait...that's the wrong nursery rhyme...
Well, hello, F.O.T.E.s. I just got finished washing my hands in the bathroom (the one we call "The Girls' Room"). Just how hard *is* it to drown a ladybug, anyway? Or just to kill them, in general? They came in swarms back at the beginning of fall, and just keep on coming. The really fun part is *where* they come in--the window in my bedroom. And the head of my bed is up against said window. I have nightmares about pulling ladybugs out of my ear canal or nostril. Or nests of them in my long hair. I have pulled them out of Tiny Tot's hand...on its way to his mouth. I usually have one on my pillow when I go to bed. They float in my bedside-table glass of water. I listen to them ping around in the light fixture at night. They really irritate me. Have ladybugs always been as aggressive as these are? I don't remember them ever getting into the house where I grew up. I think these are heavy on the "bug" and light on the "lady," because a real lady wouldn't stay where she wasn't welcome...and, buddy, these are *not* welcome. Maybe I ought to pull out that Gopher...
Well, y'all keep your wool dry!
The Ewe

Quote of the Day: Ewe's Friend: "Boy, those shoes are odiferous!" Ewe's Friend's 5 year old Lamby: "Yeah! And they stink, too!"

Friday, February 04, 2005

The Gopher a.k.a. What Was I Thinking?!

Ok...I know that you've been tempted. I know it calls to you from the aisle of The Bad Place. It looks fun, harmless...downright useful. But, Friends...please, hear me now...resist the urge to buy The Gopher. You know, the overgrown, spring-action tweezer thingy. They tell me it's been advertised on t.v. I haven't seen the commercial, but I have walked past the confounded thing a couple dozen times in Walmart. Well, yesterday I caved. It all started when I woke up and looked out the back door, onto the deck...
"RATS! The neighbor's flea-bitten dogs have been into my trash AGAIN! I'm so tired of grabbing handfuls of rotting banana peels and poopy diapers off the ground to redeposit into the garbage. GRRRRRRR!!!!"
::fast forward::
The Ewe et. al. walking down the aisle at Walmart, later in the day...
"Look, Mom! The Gopher! That would be good to use to pick up the trash the dogs strew..."
"Hmmm...good point...How much is it? Hmm...$10. Not bad. Ok, I'm feeling frisky. Put it in the cart..."
::fast forward::
The Ewe et. al. back at The Fold, putting away groceries...
"Look, Mom! I can use The Gopher to put cans on the shelf!!"
"Yes, dear, that's neat. Let's go out on the back deck and use The Gopher to pick up the scattered trash...tomorrow's trash day, you know..."
::on the back deck::
"Wow! This is fun! It really picks up the garbage!"
The Lambies bring The Gopher back into the house.
"Oh, no, Girls! Don't use The Gopher to pick up Tiny Tot's toys now that you've used it on garbage!!" "Let's use a disinfecting wipe to clean it..."
::next day::
"Girls! Stop pinching each other with that!" "Quit running around the house with that!" "Watch out!" "Don't swing The Gopher around!!"
Sigh. I'm thinking now that rubber gloves work pretty well to pick up the trash the dogs scatter. Any of you in the market for an overgrown, spring-action tweezer thingy?
Y'all keep your wool dry.
The Ewe

Plain Ol' Stuff...

Hi y'all!
Not much going on around here today...We've done the usual: laundry, laundry, laundry mixed up with dishes, dishes, dishes...Oh, and several sweep, sweep, sweeps...It can get discouraging at times, because it truly never has an ending point. But, my goodness! If that's that sum of our difficulties, we're doing great, eh?
I've been thinking about our friends and family lately. Since The Ram's deployment, folks have poured out concern, good wishes, gifts and services. I've been so humbled at everyone's eagerness to help out. How blessed we are!
A couple weeks ago, one dear family came by to share a pot of chili and help me with some little projects around here. Let me say, our outside lighting situation is much improved now. The husband must have changed half a million floodlights out there.
Other folks have made it a habit to call and check on us here at The Fold...just to see that we're OK. I know that many others pray for us regularly. I appreciate you all. And, rest assured, we're doing great. We've been blessed to hear from The Ram daily, either by phone or email.
The girls and I baked goodies to send to him today. I hope they (the goodies, not the girls) make it 'round the world before going bad...we mailed a box a few weeks ago, and that one's not made it there yet.
Well, I'd better run...still got laundry, laundry, laundry and dishes, dishes, dishes, plus some sweep, sweep, sweeps to catch up on. Y'all keep your wool dry!
The Ewe

Quote of the Day: "Da da da da da!" Tiny Tot, when the phone rang...and, yes, it *was* Da Da.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Groundhog Day

Hello, F.O.T.E.s!
Well, today's Feb. 2...Groundhog Day. I love Groundhog Day, but my sentiments have more to do with a great, big bald fellow than a small, furry one. Yes, it's The Ram's birthday. (Everyone?) Haaaaappy Birthday to youuuuuu....Haaaaapppy Birthday to youuuuuu....Haaaappy Birthday dear Raaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmm.....Haaaaaappy Birthday to youuuuuuuu! Yea!!!!
It's hard being away from him on his day. I'd love to bake him a cake (probably one of those lopsided chocolate ones I'm known for) and go to O'Charley's with him. He might have chicken parmesan or that cajun chicken pasta thing he likes. I'd have steak...The lambies would wrap lots of boxes up for him...filled with tiny treasures they've been making and collecting just for him. it is, we had Amazon send him a dvd he requested. I mailed him a box with some needed items and a little something sweet for his birthday. We sent ecards and emails...I'm hoping his fellow soldiers knew it was his birthday (you see, where he is, it's not his birthday anymore...but here, in the U.S., it still is...time difference, you know...) I hope someone whopped him on the shoulder ("That didn't hurt.") and wished him a happy birthday. I'm hoping the DFAC (dining facility) served something really yummy. I'm hoping God gave him an extra dose of blessings today.
Well, I hear Phil saw his shadow and went back in his hole. Six more weeks of winter. Well, that's ok...I'm stocked up on coffee and amaretto creamer, so we're good. Gotta run...we're putting another box into the mail for The Ram today...Y'all keep your wool dry!
The Ewe

Quote of the Day: Lovable: "Mama, why don't lambs ride on motorcycles?" Mama: "I don't know, Lovable, why *don't* lambs ride on motorcycles?" Lovable: "Because it's a baaaaaaaad idea!"