Thursday, February 28, 2008

50 Mile-stone!

After my run yesterday I plugged my ipod/Nike plus into my computer and found out that I had reached the 50 mile mark! I was amazed! Daniel bought me the Nike plus for Christmas and I used it for the first time on December 27th. So in the last two months I have run 50 miles!! WOW! I am still loving running and my long runs are increasing so hopefully I will hit the 100 mile mark before too long. I am planning to run in the YMCA St. Patrick's Day run on March 15th. I haven't decided on the 5K or the 5 miles but hopefully my beautiful friend Emily will run with me and help me decide. I plan to run a few other races this year and will post my distances and times. Hopefully with a few people following me I will feel some good pressure to improve!

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Monkey Started It: Conversations with a First Grader

I, like most parents, believe my children are very smart. Despite that, I am still suprised by some of the talks I have with CJ. I sometimes have to remind myself that he is not quite seven years old.

Last night, while I was tucking CJ in, he asked me for a stuffed animal. When I asked him which one he wanted he pointed to one of the two monkeys that are sitting on a shelf in his room. These monkeys came from my Grandpa Turnage's beloved collection. Before he passed away he said that he wanted each of his young grandkids or great grandkids to have one of his monkeys. When we drove down to Idaho Falls for Grandpa's funeral this was one of the first things I had to do..pick out monkeys for my boys. It was more difficult than I thought and I would like my boys to understand why these monkeys are so special. So when CJ asked for this monkey I explained that I wanted it to stay on the shelf so it could stay nice because it came from Grandpa. I did not realize that this was going to start a deep conversation.

When Grandpa died, Daniel and I decided that CJ and Caleb should not go to the funeral. I knew this would be a difficult time for me as well as other family members and we did not want the boys to be confused and upset. We did, however, explain that Grandpa had died and he had gone up to heaven. Since then the boys have been very open and comfortable about talking about their Grandpa Turnage who is in heaven.

Getting back to last night. CJ asked me why, once you go to heaven, you cannot come back. He said he wanted Grandpa to come back once so he could tell him that he loved and missed him. CJ was so young when Grandpa died that I was suprised he would feel that need to talk to him. We talked about how Grandpa was very funny and made a lot of people happy. I told him about a favorite picture of mine that I keep on my vanity. It is a picture of Daniel and Grandpa, at dusk, in my parents backyard. They both have big grins on their faces and it always reminds me of everything that Grandpa was--happy and funny and always making other people laugh. I told CJ that if he reminded me I would show him this picture in the morning. Then I told him that even though our family members who are in heaven cannot come back, God does make it so that if we tell them that we love them and we miss them, they can hear us. Right then CJ and I both told Grandpa that we love him very much and we miss seeing him.

This morning, while I was getting ready for work, CJ came into my room and the first thing he wanted was to see my favorite picture. CJ asked me if we could put a picture of Grandpa in his room. Of course I said yes and plan to make copies of that picture to hang up.

All of my boys are special, each in their own way. CJ has a very big heart and is always concerned with how other people are doing. CJ and Caleb have a very large family, they have step parents and step siblings. They have a lot of aunts and uncles and grandparents and cousins. Yet CJ wanted to make sure that Grandpa Turnage, who passed away when CJ was only 5, knew that he loved him and missed him. As he gets older and hears stories and sees pictures he will come to truly appreciate the incredible man that my grandpa was, but for now, it is enough for CJ that Grandpa was a member of our family.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Weekend at Grandma's

We had plans last week to drive down to Idaho Falls for the weekend to visit my grandma. But of course, everything didn't go as planned. Tuesday afternoon Gabriel started running a fever, by Wednesday he was full blown sick! Daniel stayed home with him on Wednesday and I stayed home on Thursday. We also decided to take a trip to the pediatrician on Thursday to make sure Gabe had just a cold and not something more serious. The doctor confirmed the cold and after a good nap, Gabe seemed to be feeling better. I was starting to think we might be able to make the drive to Grandma's after such luck!

Friday morning Gabe's fever was down so Daniel got him dressed and put him in the high chair for some breakfast. We struggled to give him some medicine and apparently that wore him out because while we were still standing in front of him he fell asleep, cereal in hand. Poor guy! You know if Gaby falls asleep without finishing his food then he really doesn't feel good.

So it was decided, after much contemplation and discussion, that Daniel would spend the weekend at home with Gabriel and I would drive to Idaho Falls with CJ and Caleb. Even though I knew it was just a cold and Daniel has more than proven his capability, it was still really crappy driving down the freeway, heading out of Boise, without my baby.

Four hours, two movies, three potty stops and a couple of boxes of animal crackers later, the boys and I arrived at Grandma's house. The evening was pretty quiet, the boys played Nintendo and Grandma and I visited. After the boys went to bed Grandma showed me some of the geneology she has been working on. It was really interesting! I saw my Grandma's birth certificate and my Grandpa's discharge papers from the military. I saw family trees and old pictures. But the most interesting thing I found out is that my maiden name, Dickson, is not a biological or blood name for my family. It turns out that my dad's father, Robert Bernard Dickson, was actually adopted by his step father and that is how he became a Dickson and has passed it on to my family. Although I did not know my Grandpa Dickson well and have always considered Grandpa Turnage to be my grandpa it was amazing to me that I had never known this.

We spent some time on Saturday making cookies for a church party Grandma had that night. It had been years since Grandma had made this type of cookie (I never had) and the recipe was lacking vital information like oven temperature and baking time. Through trial and error we made it through and they turned out well. The boys and I went to Grandma's party with her and got to help decorate the tables and eat all of the yummy food. Afterward the boys played more Nintendo (gasp!) and Grandma and I stayed up talking until after one in the morning. It was so nice to have some one on one time with her so we could catch up.

Too soon it was Sunday morning and time for us to go home. We packed up and drove away, waving all the way down the street. We weren't even to the freeway yet and CJ was already telling me that he missed Grandma. We will see her again around the beginning of March for MacKenzie's birthday but that still seems like too long. I am now remembering that no matter how old you are, or how young for that matter, there is something very special about Grandma's house!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Weekend Shopping

This weekend Gabriel, Daniel, and I spent Sunday with Patti, Victoria, and Jon. We met at Jon and Victoria's where Gabe opened his Valentine's Day gift from Grandma and Grandpa, a super cute Elmo who likes to blow kisses. Gabe got a kick out of this, probably because blowing kisses is one of his favorite things too!
From there we drove to Nampa to go to the new Steve & Barry's store in the Karcher Mall. This was a new experience for Daniel as he is unaccustomed to both malls and Nampa! At one point we heard police sirens and Daniel was ready to lay on the ground and cover his head to shield himself from the drive-by that seemed inevitable. Just kidding!! Even though malls are not one of his favorite places, especially those in Nampa, Daniel was a good sport and oohed and aahed with us over the wonderful bargains we found.
We also went to Target and Costco because we had never seen a Nampa Target or Costco. Target looked like Target but Costco was very different because there were a lot less people there and we didn't have to wait in a mile-long check out line or stand up while we ate our frozen yogurt.
We had lunch at Red Robin and Gabriel ate his first corn dog. He was hesitant at first but once he got the hang of it he went to town! It was very entertaining to watch and I have a feeling we will become frequent customers at Pronto Pup!
It's always fun to spend the day with the family and always even more fun to spend it shopping!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Too Busy!

I have been meaning to let everyone know about our busy weekend last week but haven't quite made it to the computer until now! Last Saturday night Daniel took CJ to the Boise State Broncos basketball game against their rivals the University of Idaho Vandals. There were tons of people there and of course, the Broncos won. This was CJ's first big sporting event and he had a lot fun!
While Daniel and CJ were at the game, Caleb got to have his friend Ethan over to spend the night. The made their own personal pizzas and watched Star Wars. Gabriel and I mostly just hung out and played with the other two boys.
We spent Sunday watching the Super Bowl, Daniel at his friend Danny's and the boys and I at my Mom and Dad's. There was a lot of food and a lot of jumping around. The Giants won which made Daniel and I happy, if only because Daniel won $5 off of Rob!
We hope everyone is having a great week and driving slow and safe in the snow!!!!