Another Weekend Full Of Cousins

So basically I didn’t write a blog post last night.

Actually, I don’t think there’s any basically about it.  I just didn’t.  I’d like to give the excuse of, “Oh… but it’s summer!  And we set our clocks to SUMMER, and sometimes we’re just busy in the evenings… very, very busy… sitting on the deck with iced tea, and I can’t bring myself to come inside and write something, and that’s how things might play out this summer.”

But that would only be half true, because the answer is YES.  We were on the deck last night.  I did eventually sit down at the computer, though, intending to put words into sentences and sentences into paragraphs, but then I read THIS POST by Ann Voskamp over at her blog, before I actually did any of my own typing.

And then that was it for me for the evening.

I don’t know Ann Voskamp at all, but I read her blog.  I usually feel like Jesus must like her way better than He likes me, because she just seems to be doing everything right.  I don’t think she drinks Lime-A-Ritas, and I don’t think she rolls her eyeballs back into her head and sighs when she sees that a little someone has crushed Ritz crackers into the living room rug.  Again.

I also don’t think that when she’s texting the pastor’s wife in a game of Words With Friends to say, “This game is over for me, because I don’t have any consonants,” that her auto spell checker makes a change that she cringes at.  I’m sure she’s never, ever texted the pastor’s wife to say, “This game is over for me, because I don’t have any condoms.”

Auto spell checker could be the death of me.

Her post last night, on being here for “such a time as this,” made me sit up and think.  There was some conviction going on, down deep in my soul.  Hubs and the boys and I sponsor a little fellow through Compassion International, too.  His name is Anthony, and he lives in Ecuador.  I am head over heels in love with him, even though I’ve never met him.

And chances are good that I probably won’t meet him, because there would be flights involved to Ecuador, and we all know that I would spend my time with my head between my knees, trying to puke my innards out into a plastic sack as quietly as possible, so as not to disturb everyone else on the plane.  And then, when we landed, I would just need to lie down in the hotel with the air conditioning on and figure out how I was going to get back home without flying.  Or driving on curved roads.

So… you know… I’d totally be walking home.  Obviously.

The motion sickness and I do not get along very well.

After reading Ann Voskamp’s post last night on how she met the child she sponsors, because she doesn’t throw up on trains, planes and automobiles, and after reading her words on how we are put here for such a time as this… how we in the palace need to reach out to those who aren’t… made me realize that I had nothing even remotely worthwhile to write.  I just couldn’t bring myself to string along a bunch of nonsense words, when THAT was on my heart.

So I shut the computer down.  I threw back a shot of NyQuil, because apparently ’tis the season for the summer coughing fit, and I went to bed.  The end.

(Oh!  And the photo on Ann’s blog post… the one of the mother, holding her dark-skinned, chubby-cheeked baby?  Well, I want to grab that baby and smooch those cheeks!  I want to rock that baby and sing to that baby and push that baby in the swing at the park!  That baby and those cheeks have done something to my heart.  I wish that little one could come live at my house.  Forever.)

We did have a fabulous weekend, though.

The boy did some golfing.

And when I say did some golfing, I mean he was at the golf course three times this weekend, because that’s what he does.  We may end up buying him his own golf cart, so that he can drive himself to and from all the golfing.

(Can you drive those on highways?  When you’re twelve?)

Hubs also threw in the towel and made a purchase on Friday afternoon.  It’s one of those purchases that made me roll my eyeballs back in my head in a most unholy way and say, “Really?  Another car payment?”  Because?  Remember the hail storm that passed through last week?  And how it smashed Hubs’ windshield in his truck?  Well, when you drive a truck that’s held together with duct tape and cuss words, a shattered windshield will cause the insurance company to utter the word TOTALED.

A new windshield, it seems, costs more than the value of the truck.

Apparently windshields take more than $30 to buy; I had no idea!

So… Hubs picked up a snazzy little Honda on Friday.  It’s not the Cadillac or Camaro he was hoping to have, but this is the car that will keep us out of debtor’s prison.  It’s also the car that announces Hubs’ attainment of Maturity, with a capital M, when he gives up his dream for sports cars with enormous engines and loud pipes for a very safe, very practical, very economical, very family-friendly car.

Thankfully, it has what Hubs refers to as a V-6, which means nothing to me.  Hubs just assured me that it’s “the thing that lets you pass everyone on hills on the interstate.”

It also has a phone on the steering wheel, which is what impresses me and the boy the most.  We tootled all over town in it this weekend, just driving to random spots in Small Town for the pure sake of driving, and we called everyone we know FROM THE STEERING WHEEL.

I honestly felt like David Hasselhoff in Knight Rider.

And yes.  We’re back in the business of having a car payment, when we haven’t had one of those in YEARS OF THE MULTIPLE KIND, which translates into SEE YOU LATER, STARBUCKS.

I’d like to blame our friend, Keith, for Hubs’ Honda.  Keith put on his big boy pants and traded his BMW in for an Accord earlier this year, because he’s trying to be a grown-up.  While we were in Major Thriving Metropolis, Keith encouraged Hubs to just drive the Accord.  Which he did.  And now there is one parked in our driveway, because if it’s manly enough for Keith, it’s apparently manly enough for my husband, too.

Our nephew, Cousin M, turned 10 this past week, so we had his birthday party this weekend.  I don’t know how it’s possible that the little fellow has reached the double digits, because I just changed his diaper and rinsed the grass off of his binky yesterday.

And today he’s ten.

IMG_5540_resized(I know that I’m a titch prejudiced, but I think he’s darling.)

(I really did luck out, because ALL of my nephews are handsome fellows.)

IMG_5443_resizedCousin M got several new books for his birthday, because he’s a reader.  He enjoys reading.  He looks forward to reading.  He reads between hockey practices.  He reads, and he reads, and he reads.

I would like to know what having a son who likes to read actually feels like.

I think Cousin B summed up our life best.  After staying up all night at a Rock-a-Thon this spring, to rock in rocking chairs and raise money for missionaries, we were trying to get the boys to get everything picked up, so they could head home at 7 AM for bed.  There was a lone book on the floor of the church’s basement, and I asked, “Whose book is this?”  Cousin B yelled back, “Well… I know it ain’t mine, because I hate books, and I hate reading!”

I think the boy raised a cup of orange juice and said, “Here, here,” and also, “Amen!”

(For the record?  Brother — who is Hubs’ brother; I’m not claiming him! — tipped his head sideways behind Cousin M on purpose.  He’s a bit of a dork.  I married the most handsome and the most normal son their mama had to offer the ladies.)

IMG_5449_resizedIMG_5459_resized IMG_5461_resized IMG_5465_resized IMG_5444_resized IMG_5450_resized IMG_5452_resizedThing 2 was a little bored of all the present-opening, so Cousin B took him outside to hug the cat and blow bubbles.

Thing 2 thinks anyone who can successfully blow bubbles is amazing.   Blowing bubbles by himself is one of his life goals.

IMG_5477_resized IMG_5481_resized IMG_5483_resized IMG_5484_resized IMG_5487_resizedAnd then Cousin M showed everyone a weapon from hundreds of years gone by, which he learned to make at summer camp last week.  He brought the plans home, and he and his grandpa made one together.  I’d tell you the name of this weapon, but I don’t know it.  It was a very funny name, and funny names don’t stick in my head very well.

It’s why I’ll never be able to remember that Kim Kardashian and Kayne West named their child North West.  Some people just need a good smack.

The boys all took turns flinging arrows at imaginary buffalo on the plains.

IMG_5495_resized IMG_5496_resized IMG_5497_resized IMG_5502_resized IMG_5507_resized IMG_5514_resized IMG_5518_resized IMG_5523_resized IMG_5526_resized IMG_5535_resized IMG_5537_resized IMG_5542_resized IMG_5546_resizedAnd then Cousin W asked, “Pop bottle rockets, anyone?”

Boys and fireworks go together like peanut butter and jelly.  It’s amazing boys even live to become adults… or that they usually have both of their eyeballs still in their heads as grown-ups.

IMG_5547_resized IMG_5551_resized IMG_5554_resized IMG_5557_resized IMG_5560_resizedOf course, Cousin M had cake and ice cream at his party, which Thing 2 was very relieved about.  Thing 2 doesn’t like parties without cake.

IMG_5562_resized IMG_5569_resized IMG_5572_resizedWe came home Saturday evening, and this is what happened:

Thing 2 went to bed at 7:00 pm.

The boy went to sleep at 7:35 pm.

I had NyQuil and went to sleep at 8:15 pm.

I have no idea when Hubs went to sleep, because he was watching hockey on TV.

We live such exciting lives, people want to be us.

On Sunday, we had my parents and Sister and her family over for dinner.  Hubs grilled chicken, and we made a bowl of guacamole that could have fed a fraternity house for three days.

The kids went out on our deck to use Thing 2’s slide.  Thing 2 is an accomplished slider.  He has, in fact, some very mad sliding skills.  He also doesn’t like to sit around and wait for someone to GO DOWN THE SLIDE, ALREADY.  When he climbs the ladder, if there’s a body in his way…

…he simply shoves that body down the slide, whether she’s ready to go or not.

This habit did not, in any way, endear Thing 2 to Little Cousin H.  It’s pretty safe to say that Cousin H wanted to poke Thing 2 in the eyes with a stick on Sunday and disown him, for all the pushes he gave her.IMG_5586_resized IMG_5587_resizedThing 2 doesn’t like to waste time, and he has no patience for nervous girls on the top of the slide.

His mama still loves him, though.

IMG_5590_resized IMG_5593_resized IMG_5595_resized IMG_5597_resized IMG_5601_resized IMG_5603_resized IMG_5604_resized IMG_5609_resized IMG_5616_resized IMG_5619_resized IMG_5622_resized IMG_5626_resized IMG_5629_resized IMG_5635_resized(We’re still working on his biting habits and his playground manners.)

And that, people, was our weekend.

Plus?  Well, I resized ALL of these pictures in four seconds.  Oh, yes!  I did!  However, I think they’re all on the small side.  They’re tiny little pictures tonight, and I don’t know what that’s all about.  But… beggars cannot be choosers.  Sometimes four seconds of resizing means that you’ll have to deal with photos the size of a mouse’s nose.  I’ll have to ask my I.T. guy about it.  Maybe I’ll quit doing his laundry until he’s looked into the matter.

Y’all have a happy Monday evening.

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