June 25, 2010

Spring has Sprung

It began with an empty blue egg on the grass. Shortly after, we began to notice the robins in our yard with renewed frequency. I found their nest one afternoon during a reading lesson. We stood under the oak tree squinting into the bright sun. The nest was hardly visible, so far in the uppermost branches.

Last week we heard a commotion outside. Robins were diving and squawking in a frenzy. I knew what had happened before we saw him. Manny was towering over a hardly feathered robin. We shooed the dog indoors (unbelievable that he didn't gulp the little guy down) and talked about what we could do. The nest was at least 20 feet up and inaccessible. I knew we couldn't leave him on the ground with the dog, neighbor's cat, and wildlife around. So we did what we've done before--named him, took pictures of him, and put him into a coconut liner as a makeshift nest. Then I pulled out the 7 year old homemade wooden ladder. The boys held the ladder as I climbed into the tree, not quite reaching the branch I was aiming for I abandoned the ladder for a hold on the tree, all the while balancing the 'nest' with baby bird inside in one hand. Finally reaching my destination, but still far from the bird's original home, I made a big mistake and looked down. My palms started sweating as I realized I was trusting the boys with my life and risking broken bones to place this bird in the tree.

We watched and waited hoping that the robins would feed their babe. We didn't see them coming to the new 'nest', but I hoped that we had just missed it. The next morning we decided that, if the baby had lived through the night, we would take turns feeding it until it could make it on its own.Not having learned my lesson, I climbed back onto the ladder--this time placing it in an even more precarious position and climbed up. I found the baby bird on it's side in the coconut liner, not moving. How hard that news was to break to the kids. It was a sad and sullen group of children who returned to the house after our discovery.

June 15, 2010

Sister-2, Brother-1

Who knew that losing teeth would be such a contest? With a mix of kids all squished in that 'losing teeth' phase it seems like someone is always requesting a tooth wiggle. Grosses me out to insanity. The tough part is that little sister is losing teeth faster than big brother. Excuses are made, wiggling techniques are perfected, but in the end those buggers come out when they are good and ready. Unfortunately, Everett and Eli have been blessed with late blooming.

We did the tooth thing two years ago with Everett and Ella. Ella lost her first tooth before Everett. That caused much angst. After that first one the competition seemed to cool. It helped that Ella's teeth always fell out in the oddest ways. She ate two of them (by accident), lost one in the pool while snorkeling, and lost another while sleeping. Everett was much more careful about yanking them out--as to avoid losing his enamel trophy.

Now we are going through the same thing with Elijah and Sally. He's about to even the score, but not fast enough for his tastes.

It's nasty, nasty, nasty if you ask me. But I still give them money and take their picture. Even when they are smeared with pizza or dripping blood. Yuck.

June 8, 2010

Trees of Glory

Karen has posted on her blog details on the new CarePoint through Children's Hopechest in Ethiopia. Please take a minute to read about these children and their dire situation. We can hardly imagine $34 making a difference. In my world, $34 is wasted on one meal out. I can pretend to understand that $34 can make the difference between living and surviving...but I don't really understand.

That got me thinking about what we do with thirty bucks in America. Most of the things that came to mind aren't worthwhile ventures. Things that seem so important at the time, but will be stuffed into the closet; forgotten until Easter Seals calls you for donations. We live in a crazy culture.

By sponsoring a child you are providing food, medical care, education, clothing, and hope to a child whose life we cannot begin to imagine.

Eli was outside barefoot all day yesterday. At the end of the afternoon I sat him on the edge of the tub with a nailbrush to clean his feet. As I scrubbed, he said, "Jirgna's feet are probably a lot dirtier than mine."

Everett popped his head in and added, "Except he's walking around on soil from volcanic ash."

My children have a friend on the other side of the world who doesn't live the way they do. We write to him, pray for him, and talk about him. Our family has been blessed by a young boy in Ethiopia.

Please consider taking advantage of this amazing opportunity. Email Karen for sponsorship information at kwinstrom@yahoo.com

June 1, 2010

Potty Talk

We are raising a future attorney. Everything needs arguing, explaining, and coercing. From him, not us. Upon visiting the potty recently Josiah waved his hands and explained, "It's just not workin'. My weewee needs new batteries."