...and they all lived happily ever after...

...and they all lived happily ever after...

Thursday, May 26, 2016

End of the year honors for teachers too

The end of the school year is ALWAYS crazy busy.  There is just soooooo much going on.

And so the other day when Josh got a note in the mail inviting him to a luncheon relating to teachers and exemplary students, he didn't think much of it.  In fact, he didn't even plan to attend.

Until he heard from the office that he was expected to be there (he hadn't found a sub for the day so that took some quick maneuvering, but it got done).  He schlepped over to the rotary club and had lunch and good conversation with students and members of the club.

Then for the awards.  The luncheon was intended to honor the top ten students in the 2016 graduating class.  Pretty cool!  Josh had nine of the ten in his classes throughout their high school experience so it was fun for him to see them shine.

But then, surprise surprise, he was called to the front.  Turns out the rotary club honors the top ten students and then asks those students to select one teacher who was the most influential during their high school years and this crew chose Josh.  Even the one student who hadn't been in Josh's class chose him because the boy's brother had Josh and loved him.

Normally at the end of the school year I am pleased to see the accomplishments my crew of small people has completed throughout the year.  It is fun this time around to also oooh and aaah over the incredible man I married as he was recognized for his work and efforts as well.  

I think he rocks!
(I love you Joshua Kerr)

Monday, May 16, 2016

A fowl creature comes to our house

Sunday afternoon I came home from visiting a lady to the sound of angry screeching in the back yard.

While human screeching is not unheard of at our house, this was the screeching of LOTS of birds, which is odd so I peeked over the fence to investigate.

The power lines that run along our yard and one that comes to our house were littered with several types of birds (starlings, finches, etc) and ALL of them were screeching and crying.

When I looked down into our yard I saw a magpie there and that it was pecking at something in the grass.  I watched as the magpie bent to grab the something and then kind of tossed it into the air.  That's when I realized the something it had was a baby bird.

Now, there are no big trees in our yard and no neighbor trees overhang our yard so it seemed to me that this magpie had likely taken the infant from its nest and was now in our yard ready to pick it to pieces for an easy meal.

I am very aware of the ways of nature, I know that creatures eat each other all the time.  I am an eater of meat so I willingly participate in the carnage of the hierarchy of food as well.  

I also know that baby animals are often an easy target for predators looking for food.  That's part of life and I get it.

But am not often asked to watch that scene play out live and in person in my own back yard.

And I found that I just couldn't stand to do it.

I rushed into the back yard and chased off the magpie who stayed in a nearby tree.  When I turned to go inside to find a box and some gloves so I could inspect the tiny thing, the magpie immediately flew back onto my lawn looking to finish his lunch.

So I called Parker out to to stand guard while I went inside to  gather supplies (he was very ardent in his duties and took his job quite seriously).  Then we scooped up the fledgling and brought him inside.

He was not in good shape, but we could see he was breathing.  We quick searched in the internet for "how to care for a baby bird" and tucked the little fellow into a box with a heating pad and an old t-shirt.

We read about what to feed him and found a couple of videos about making a mash of soggy dog food and flour and water, but that didn't really work out.  Eventually I just went with my gut and mixed up some powdered milk into a thick kind of batter and that's what he's been eating.  He sits up and chirps, mouth wide open when he's hungry and we're doing our best to care for him.

I'm not exactly sure where this is headed.  I've never cared for a nestling before and I don't know how severe his injuries are.  He does seem to have some issues, but he demands food regularly and he moves around in his box a bit so that seems like a good sign.

If I'm very honest, I'm not exactly thrilled to have a new avian charge under my wing.  I already have a herd of six yea-hoos and a dog to care for.

However, I couldn't stand to watch him be gobbled up either so this is the consequence of that choice.

My kids are completely smitten with the little bugger and are anxious to help. We'll see how it goes.  It is definitely a new adventure for us.

Wish us luck!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

My sweet baby girl

A couple of days ago Josh and I went on a walk around the neighborhood.  This is something that I love to do and something that Josh endures because he loves me (thanks honey).

While we were out, we were flagged down by a man who attends church with us.  He called us over to his car and told us he wanted to tell us something about one of our kids.  This always puts me on edge because one never knows which direction a story about her offspring might go (we've experienced many versions on this scenario).

He told use that last week at church (which was Mother's Day) he'd had an experience with our daughter.  Our family was sitting in front of him.  In the middle of the meeting the young men and adult men of our ward went up to the front to sing a hymn as a gift to the mothers (it was actually really sweet, I'm a fan).  Our friend behind us stood to go up to the front, but then found that he was too emotionally overwhelmed to sing with the group (his wife passed away a few years ago and Mother's Day is still a tender day for him).  He sat back down and a few tears streaked down his face while he listened to the song.

Unbeknownst to me, Ellie noticed this.  

Our friend also recently told us that he met his wife at
the Grand Canyon so this picture seemed fitting.
So, she set about making it better.  She drew a picture of herself and this gentleman together with a sunshine and flowers and she wrote, "I like you a lot, from Ellie" in her best kindergarten handwriting.  Then she put it in an envelope (heaven knows where she came up with an envelope during sacrament meeting) and handed it back to the man behind us.

Neither Josh nor I had any idea that any of this had gone one.  But as our friend told us about this from the driver's seat of his car, choked up so much he could barely talk and tears streaming his cheeks, I was so grateful for that little girl.

He told us that he had really needed a little bit of love that day.  He told us that he felt more touched by that one tiny act than by almost anything in a long time.  He told us that the love of a six year old completely turned his day around and that he had the picture hanging up in his house and didn't plan to take it down any time soon.

I was grateful that he took the time to tell us about this.  I am thankful that our little girl would see beyond herself and look to the needs of another person.  I am grateful that both of these people would be examples of kindness and caring and tenderness and that I got to see it all up close and personal.

If I am honest, I an constantly amazed by my little people (usually in good ways).  I am grateful to be their mom because I learn more from them than I think I could ever possibly teach them.  They make me a better person every day.

Yeah, moments like this are a very sweet payday.

Friday, May 6, 2016

The man in my life

Sometimes I forget that I didn't meet Josh until the day before my 21st birthday.

Sometimes I turn to him when I'm telling a story about when I was a kid and give him that "remember when that happened" look before I realize, nope, he wasn't around when I was ten years old.

Sometimes it feels like my life didn't start until an evening in December when I went on one of the worst dates of my life which grew into the best thing that ever happened to me.

But all the time, I'm grateful beyond my ability to express that this goofball happened to cross my path so that we could plunge into Happily Ever After together.

Thanks for making my life so incredible, Joshua.  I love you more than I know how to say.

(p.s. Happy Birthday)

Just a typical evening with a regular, old pair of nut jobs.

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