Way Back Wednesday

My three daughters, I captured on film, all at about the same age: 18 months old. I’m still amazed that they all came from the same gene pool. And that two average-looking people can create such exquisite beauty. The girls appear below, with Halie at the top, in B&W, September 2000, then at lower left is Catie, Easter 2002, and finally, bottom right, my little firecracker, Rosie, February 2005. Enjoy!


Hurry up…WAIT. Hurry up…WAIT.

That is what traffic in DFW is like: gas, brake…gas, brake…gas, brake. Why does it seem that the whole world is in such a dadgum hurry? With or without turn signals, inconsiderate drivers wedge into the smallest breaks in traffic, even when the driver has known for the last 1/2 mile that their lane was merging with the next one. That’s just ‘rush hour’. Then there is the perpetual reconstruction of our expressways, highways and interstates. I know that even as one major project finally ends on our roads, another one begins, and the traffic jams simply rotate to another area of Dallas. TXDOT has to keep hiring because there is always a new major road to repair. Guess there is a high turnover rate in Road Repairs.

I am grateful that I deal with traffic on my terms. I am blessed to stay home with my daughters and have a relatively flexible schedule. I get to choose the hour at which I travel across the metroplex, thus avoiding traffic. I deliberately shop at Wal-Mart after my girls are tucked in bed in the evening, leaving DH on Snore Patrol, simply so I can be unrushed and kind to the other shoppers. I just get a happy feeling when I say, “You go ahead. I’ve got all the time in the world.” Strangers don’t know that the very shopping trip I’m on is the very first time in days that I’ve been out without my three daughters. Since my accident two years ago, I am never in a hurry. When I find myself rushing my kids to get them out the door, or find myself double-checking the speed limit signs on my neighborhood streets, I remind myself of this fact: No one is going to die or lose their job because I’m not there early.

Halie’s Birthday Bike

Although Halie’s seventh birthday is not until December 7, my father promised her a bike as a gift. Halie’s ‘Papa’ picked her up on Saturday after lunch and took her to a family friend’s cycling store that recently celebrated 25 years in business. This is the place where Discovery Team members Lance Armstrong and Patrick McCarty got their start. My father has been cycling for as long as I can remember, so before he arrived to pick Halie up, I reiterated to her that “Papa is a seasoned pro – don’t question him.” I knew that Halie was afraid of trying to ride without training wheels. I mean at her core. My dad did try to get her to at least try a bike or two with no training wheels. He walked on one side and the owner of the shop walked on the other side, and each time that Halie began to lose her balance, they would reach out to ‘catch’ her. Even with two strong men on either side offering protection, she was in serious tears before the ride was over. Halie did find a bike that she l-o-v-e-s, and a basket that matches, as well as a new helmet. DH and I are kicking ourselves for idiotically putting her on the same bicycle, wearing the same helmet since she was three.
Okay, our buns are sufficiently bruised. We have agreed to set a better example for our daughters with our fitness levels, and we’re looking for bicycles of our own. After all, we’re much too out of shape to run behind Halie and Catie, trying to keep up with them on their bicycles! They are speedy. As for DH and myself? Not so much. But maybe with a bicycle or two…

In case you were wondering…

If you have ever wondered about why on earth my blog is named Family Circus, I have one question: Did you see the pictures? Take a moment and check out old posts ‘ In My Basement’. Past stories might give you a glimpse into the complexities behind my simple, beige front door.

At one time, I was searching for a doorbell that played circus music. You know, the music you always hear at a Ringling Brothers show. That should be OUR theme music! Or maybe the theme to ‘Batman‘ would work. Maybe ‘Peter Gunn’ might be enough warning when my girls are on the scene. It would help – and I could avoid having to explain about how social graces work in our house…

Dirty Laundry Saved the Day

DH loves tossing the girls around on our bed. They deliberately climb onto the footboard of our sleigh bed (three feet off the floor), then after maintaining balance for a few moments, they take the Nestea plunge, falling backwards to land flat on our mattress, and then giggle hysterically. Rosie, after seeing how much fun her older sisters have, decides she’d like to share in the giggling fun. DH usually lifts her onto the footboard, then says, “Ready…Set…GO!” When he says, “GO!”, he lifts Rosie and while still in the air, he positions her so that she will not bounce so violently that she ends up on the floor. On her head.

Recently, I’ve been getting rather behind in laundry. The hampers are overflowing. Okay, okay. Truth: I’ve emptied the baskets and separated the white/darks, which I have left in two piles on either side of our bed. Large piles. On the carpet.
Without any ‘reminders’ from DH, I began to feel guilty about letting the laundry (literally) pile up. I finally found time during Rosie’s extended nap yesterday to start a load of laundry, then dry it and put it away. Still, the smaller piles of laundry stayed next to the bed into the evening.
DH got home relatively early in the evening, and has a tradition of ‘Daddy Time’ with our daughters. Generally, this time involves much grabbing, giggling, and pleas from our daughters to end the ‘tickle torture’. Today, however, all three girls practiced their own version of the Nestea plunge. Halie went – I’d give her a score of 8, then Catie – surely a 9. Then Rosie attempted to perform her stunt without the safety net – DH was talking to Halie. As Rosie climbed, then plunged, her tiny 25 pound body caught some wicked air, and off the side of our queen-sized bed she went. DH and I both gasped as we watched the entire scene in s-l-o-w. m-o-t-i-o-n. Just as we both began to reach for Rosie, we realized she was not crying. Rosie was giggling! She was thrashing around in the dirty laundry. Turns out that the pile of darks had saved the day.

Cowboys vs. Broncos

DH took Halie to the Thanksgiving Day game: Dallas vs. Denver. They were sitting on the 20 yard line with the Cowboys’ Families in front of them. Those two rows of ‘family seating’ was all that separated them from the Cowboys team. Halie was beaming as she came through the door tonight, I spite of the loss of her beloved Cowboys. She was toting a pom-pom of Cowboys colors, and wearing a huge foam finger. Even though Dallas had their biggest fan in their home stadium, they lost 21-24 to the Broncos. Like I said, Halie’s spirit was not dampened in the least. Turns out, she made friends with one of the the players’ kids ( she’s Greg Ellis’s daughter, I believe), and one of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. The cheerleader and my six year old traded smiles and waves from the sidelines, and Halie danced along with the squad when music came on. When the next quarter of the football game came, the cheerleaders rotated to a different spot, at the other end of the field. Halie was devastated, saying, “Oh No! I can’t find my cheerleader friend!” DH explained how they move around the stadium throughout the football game. “Well, I miss her!”, wailed Halie. One of the male fans nearby, after hearing Halie’s despair, responded by patting her on the back and telling her, “I feel your pain.”

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Things about Erin

Happy Thanksgiving To All!

1. I don’t floss as often as I should. I’m lucky to brush twice a day!

2. My oldest daughter has pulled two of her own teeth. loose, of course.

3. I would rather send an email than make a phone call.

4. Chaos erupts when I’m on the phone. Thus the title Family Circus.

5. I don’t consider emails from friends and family ‘impersonal ‘.

6. I keep up with ‘Lost’ and ‘Prison Break’.

7. My 16th spiritual birthday was on Nov. 22.

8. My sister, across the state, accepted Christ about the same time.

9. My holiday overindulgence runs from Halloween to Valentine’s Day. Seriously.

10. I’ve never kept a New Year’s Resolution. Chocolate sabotages my best intentions.

11. I’ve stopped making resolutions. At least the ones that I share publicly.

12. I’m cetain that at least one of my daughters will win an Oscar. Drama!

13. I pray that she will thank her parents. Especially her loving, supportive mother.

Every Thanksgiving, I eat too much, and have to choose between staying awake to watch the Cowboys’ game or digesting. At my house, we TiVo the games to skip the commercials. This time, DH and Halie will be sitting just behind the Cowboys bench. I’ll be recording every second just in case they are on television.

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