"Mom, do we have any buttermilk?"
"mm hmm. bottom shelf of the door. big white carton."
"'Cause if we don't, I know what to do! You just take two cups of lemon juice, and a little bit of milk, and add that instead. I can't find the buttermilk." He ran back out.
I rolled back over, opened my eyes, and made darn sure that he found the buttermilk.
We had another happy morning on Friday. Mark's coworkers have gotten him to do this diet that they've been on, an he's been pretty happy with it. He says it's been easy and he is now down to his wedding weight, having lost about 30 lbs since September. It has been gradual but noticeable the whole time, or so I thought.
The kids, though, have not been paying much attention. I guess because they usually see their Dad in his suitcoat on Sunday or in his baggy yardwork/football watching sweats. Anyway, he bought some new jeans and came out wearing them on Friday morning. (Mark calls them his midlife crisis jeans--he'll be turning 40 this spring.) He looked great and no, I did not think it was appropriate to take a picture.
"Whoa, Dad!" says Cooper, eyes big. "How did you get taller?"
Mark's luck continued to hold. He had a cavity free checkup that morning, a life-insurance exam that gave him his best stats ever, and that night we went out to Ruby River steakhouse to celebrate his best-ever week at work (10 closings, 5 in one day) and his meeting his diet goal. The waitress even complimented him on his jacket. (Or so he thought, as he sheepishly confessed the next day. She had been talking to me.)
Ruby River is not cheap, and we haven't been there for quite some time. I remember going there with mom and dad to celebrate our BYU graduation, and going there with our friends the Rowleys when both my friend and I were 8 or so months pregnant with Boston and her son Easton. That was a fun one. We both were like, bring on the beef! and we could barely squeeze into the booth. We miraculously ate more than the guys but I do remember taking multiple trips to the bathroom and laughing as we had to try to squeeze BACK into the booth, again.
To preface what happens next, let me just bring up a little trend I may have mentioned before. Everywhere we go, usually when we are on a date, people come out of the woodwork that know Mark. "Mark Day, Mark Day! Hey, it's Mark! Mark Day, wuzzup? Hey Mark! Long time no see, man," etc. I should have been warned when the one guy he knew in all of Canada, an old mission companion, spotted us as we were taking wedding pictures on the grounds of the Cardston Alberta Temple. (Mark is also one of those annoying people who always win things at raffles and drawings. I get him back when we go to church in smalltown Montana and everyone knows our business. Ha.) Well, it happened again, this time it was a co-worker from years ago.
When the ticket came (and Mark had ordered the prime rib) our bill had already been taken care of. Thanks Albert!
Mark is on such a roll that this morning I informed him that he is even breaking into my subconscious. Luke, at 6:45, had just woken me from a vivid dream where I had been examining the contents of my locker on the first day of high school. I had been bewildered by a note on the inside of my locker door that just read, "Mark, XOXOX". When I woke up I realized it was in my husband's handwriting. Awwww, sweet! Especially since (you see, our life is not completely perfect) I had been mad at him all afternoon yesterday for not patching a crucial bike tire. He wanted to update the 72 hr emergency kits instead. The nerve.
He is not the only hero around here, however. When we carved pumpkins this year, we asked Luke what his jack o' lantern should be named.
He proudly answered, "Grandpa!"
|I don't know if that was a compliment or not, since this "Grandpa" has neither hair nor teeth.|
|We were all rays of sunshine for Halloween.|
|She was Alice in Wonderland, which was very appropriate for her trip to...Las Vegas. I thought the playing cards in the pocket were a nice touch. She had her last marching band competition there, on Halloween. That night they wore their costumes and went to the Tournament of Kings at Ex Caliber. She thought it was fun but I guess the dancers there were embarrassing. Fie, Vegas.|
Sometimes it takes the really bad to stir up the good. We were sad to watch the coverage of the attacks on Paris this week. Mark served his mission there and it is a special place. I hope that some good comes of it and hearts are softened there. What surprised me is that I kept thinking about the mothers of those terrorists--and their likely lack of influence. It is so sad that there are so many cultures that take the men-children away while they are still young and impressionable and fill them with hate, programming them to do these terrible things. I kept imagining, what if a hostile army came to my door and conscripted my tender young sons? What would be my desperate parting words? What lessons have I yet to teach? Well, gladly, that won't happen to me, but shouldn't I take the hint and teach them those life or death things right now? What would you say to your children if they had to grow up, without you, right now?
You have the Holy Ghost. Keep your heart pure so you can listen to those feelings--they are your lifeline.
Look for ways to make the ones around you less lonely and afraid. This will help you find peace and courage yourself.
Don't give place to anger, it will destroy you.
Remember the truth about who you are.
Trust God, He will make all things right. He is the "High Priest of Good Things Yet to Come".
I think I have some more teaching to do.