Getting on the good foot, eventually


photo 1photo 11photo 10 I awoke Sunday morning with the remembrance of a dream.

Have you ever done that? Had a dream that surprises or stirs you?

I’ve dreamt many strange things. Just before the tsunami that devastated Southeast Asia, I dreamt it just a few days before. I stood in horror watching it on tv and told the Hubs that I had those exact images in my sleep just a few days before.

But on Sunday, I dreamt of something ordinary. Something I miss and that must have spilled into my subconscious.

I dreamt of wearing TWO shoes. One on the left foot and get this,

the other on the right – (did that image just give you chills???)

Though I’m certain many of my previous dreams have included me in footwear, I overlooked their significance until today.

Weird how the mind works. Fascinating how things once commonplace become important when they are gone even if it’s only temporarily.

I had foot surgery the day after Christmas. For many years, orthopedic screws in my right foot have caused me problems. It was a more complicated surgery than expected because one of the screws was deeply lodged in my foot and the doctor had to bore two deep holes in my foot to extricate it. Interestingly, one of the screws was loose which probably only proves the theory that many have held for a long time.

And then I developed a shin splint which further impeded my ability to move forward.  Why I was downright churlish when the doctor had the gall to insist on further restricting my mobility!

My tendency is to hurry out of a place of waiting but crud muffins, that’s my reality. Am I the only one who just wants to be over and done with a struggle? Of course not!

Here are the doctor’s orders.

SLOW DOWN! – I’m not used to being still. I’m a busy girl, things to do, people to see, places to go. Forced to move at almost a snail’s pace is challenging. Possibly this is a message for me even after I’m healed.

STAY OFF YOUR FOOT! – If I am foolish enough to walk on my foot without protection, I could break my foot and make matters worse. I might need to ease back into normal activity. I’m wondering if God wants me to do less and abide more.

IT’S GOING TO TAKE TIME! – I’m still learning that healing of the mind, heart and hoof require patience and perseverance. I can’t rush through the recovery but I can do a lot to impede it.

photo 12I know that I will be back in two shoes, Lord willing, by mid-February. I will savor that thrilling return of a simple pleasure. Driving a car, riding a bike, going on a walk, oh how I will cherish those moments!

What lessons have you learned in times of suffering? What have you taken for granted in terms of your health that you now appreciate more than ever? I’ve got about four more weeks of recovery, I’d love to hear! When you easily stroll from one place to the other, give thanks, friends!

Sixth Grade Awkwardness


It is not easy being a sixth grader. Your body is changing, other people’s bodies are changing. You’ve got your girl drama and although most people don’t believe it, you’ve got boy drama too. I should know as the mama of three sons. Sometimes your nose is outgrowing the rest of your body, an occasional blemish will show up unexpectedly to your horror, I bet we all are glad to be over and done with sixth grade, right? 

My youngest OS is a little sixth grader who is looking forward to school today. He normally simply tolerates school. My bookends, the oldest and the youngest OS, are certainly different from one another. Nate’s at West Point, doing extremely well in every aspect. Ike’s in middle school. He has to work hard to maintain good grades and would much rather be on a basketball court or at a friend’s house. Poor Isaac, his dumb parents stress the importance of education so he has no choice but to do homework and keep learning. Woe is he. 

Today is an extra special day because in Science class, they are going to suture a pig’s foot. They are studying skin disorders and a special guest, Dr. Saad will show the sixth graders how to do it. Ike’s teacher, Mrs. Hamo thinks that the students are mature enough to handle this. Ike thinks otherwise. Although he is confident he has the intestinal fortitude to handle the procedure. “If it were a liver or something, that would be disgusting,” he commented to me just before leaving for school, Ike has heard that people have passed out AND thrown up in the past. I can’t wait to hear about all the theatrics quite honestly. 

Ike stated that suturing a pig’s foot will definitely be a step above one of the most recent lessons in Mrs. Hamo’s Science class.  Again, the class was studying skin but this time they learned about…are you ready? Do you think you can handle this? Are you sure? Ok, it was on…(begin rolling eyes)…mammary glands. 

Did you know that mammary glands are only found in females? True! Ike said he didn’t necessarily know that helpful fact but I think my 12 year old could have lived a LONG time without that piece of knowledge. Apparently he wasn’t alone because the entire class erupted into laughter. Can you say AWKWARD!

Why, I can still fondly recall the special assembly at Jefferson Junior High in Naperville, Illinois. No boys were allowed. It was just for girls  and we watched a movie in the gym. It was about menstruation and I seriously wanted to die. If my memory serves me right, I think there was a girl riding on a horse and after that, everything was a blur. She seemed so happy even on her period. “Kill me. Kill me, now,” I desperately pleaded as I sat on the aluminum folding chair. 

I’ll let you know how Ike handles today and I suppose I won’t be able to use actual names in the post though for fear of even more sixth grade troubles. 

Does anyone else have a special middle school memory that just won’t leave your mind no matter how hard you try? 

And the winner is…


Thanks for all your suggestions about blog posts. I am particularly impressed with apeasofmylife and thehokeypokeyplaces challenge to combine all three of my potential posts into one. I appreciate your confidence in my ability but I’m not sure I’ve got it in me. 

So I hope you can settle with my post being about…

BRAINS (I will do posts about boxing and beds in the near future, promise!) 

Just as I was finishing up my time with a broken foot, Ike decided to tear some ligaments in his foot! Can you believe it??? Last Sunday, I went to church with my orthopedic boot and Isaac on crutches. People are beginning to get worried about us! With limited mobility and a two week fall break in front of us, I had to do something with my son since running and basketball were out of the question. That’s when I came up with a brilliant idea…let’s make a brain! 

With our oldest OS away at West Point, we could use an extra brain around the house. He’s like the smartest guy in our family and we have been feeling his intellectual absence. Maybe your family thinks they are super duper intelligent, we know we’re not. No sense in trying to pretend. 

You might think brains are made of grey matter but that would be wrong, my friends (said in a John McCain-y kind of voice;).  Bet you didn’t know that brains are actually made of corn starch, gelatin, water and food coloring! And incidentally, they smell kind of icky too.

For Christmas last year we bought our OS a Disgusting Anatomy Brain kit with Bonus Eyeball Kit! It’s been sitting in the closet ever since then and so on a beautiful autumn day, we began to make our disgusting brain. 

Isaac stirred the gelatin into the water then the corn starch and in no time at all, our brain was placed into the mold to congeal overnight. Amidst the fresh produce and condiments, there sat our brand new brain, chilling out.

And it was ready just in time, too. As this video clip demonstrates, suddenly we found a family member in DIRE need of a brain. That sometimes happens with 14 year olds

We sure were glad to have that slimy brain ready for delivery! We performed a minor lobotomy and thank goodness, Aaron has a mind of his own!

(This is part one)
We still have enough stuff to make at least one more brain, give us 24 hours and we can have one ready for you too!  

Mothering is fun!