Sunday, April 30, 2006

Katie's Questions....

So, I asked Katie, my 3 year old the following questions:

Where do babies come from?
Katie: Baby eggs (Clearly we are failing in the sex ed dept)

What is a rain forest?
Katie: It's kinda jungle (NO credit here, she watches Go, Diego Go!)

How big is the world?
Katie: This big (streches out her arms)

Why do we go to church?
Katie: Cause we just have to. (Ain't that the truth)

Why do birds build nests?
Katie: Because baby birds don't have any homes they build a nest

How do baby birds get into the nest?
Katie: By cracking their eggs with their beaks

Who loves you the most in the whole wide world?
Katie: Mama (Mommy feels a bit left out here, but will get over it.)
(For those of you new here, Mama is Cheryl and I (Wendy) am Mommy.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Someone please tell me...

Why do kids whine? I am telling you, I cannot stand whining. I know, I know, they all do it, but where do they learn it? Katie is a pretty even going child, but lately all she seems to do is whine. The minute you tell her that she can't have something (like candy right before dinner) she starts up the whine machine and it drives me crazy. I tell her that I don't understand whine, I ask her to start over without whining and she will do these things, but then 2 seconds later, wham...back to whining! Now, I know she probably learned it from her big sister who is a master whiner. Gillian was born whining. I think she may have whined from the womb, but I can't be sure if it was me or her I was hearing at the time. Oh, maybe that is the answer....they learned it from me. Yes, I will freely admit that I whine and probably more than I should. there is my answer.....they learned whining from me. I guess it's up to me to stop it too huh? Darn!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Gonna be famous!

I wrote an article for our local newspaper and I just received word that they are going to publish it! I have to make arrangements for them to come and take pictures at the church and when it comes out, I will link it! Here is what I wrote.....

What I believe.....

I believe that being a lesbian doesn't preclude me from God's love. This one simple sentence, took me years to understand and believe. Growing up, the message that I always heard the few times I ever went to church is that there was no room for someone like me in any church. God does not love sinners and lesbians such as myself were of the highest order of sinners. I spent a lot of my adulthood shying away from organized religion. When my oldest daughter was born I made an effort to attend one of the Unitarian church's in the area, but for me, something always felt lacking. I felt comfortable with the church school program, but the church itself just didn't speak to me the way that I felt I needed to be spoken to. I needed more religion and less social justice. Don't get me wrong, I think that there is a big place for social justice in religion, it's just that I missed singing hymns and praying to God. I missed the cross hanging over the chancel and the celebration of the religious holidays. I missed singing Praise God In the Highest.

Fast forward to 2005. I had met my partner and we married (in the eyes of the unitarian church) and had added another child to our family. Our oldest child had no formal religious basis and I really felt that something spiritual was lacking once again in my life and my family. We had attended some holiday services at my mother in law's home church and incidentally the church that my partner had been raised in, and while no one ever came out and told us that we weren't welcome there, I never felt invited, more like tolerated. My mother in law had started to attend The United Church of Fayetteville as some of her friends were members there. Having attended a musical program there back in 2002, I knew from reading their literature, that they were a welcoming church as specifically stated they welcomed everyone...including lesbian's like me! I knew from the first time that I attended services there, this was the place for me. Their inclusion statement was not just something written on paper, but it was something that was practiced personally to me the first time I ever walked in the door. It felt as though I had come home. I felt for the first time, that God did love me and that I could have a close and special relationshio with Him. I am learning to read the bible and I am learning what it means to be a Christian. I am developing a new identity, one that I feel has been underneath all the time and just wating to burst out! Our daughter's attend church school and are learning the stories of the bible. My oldest child who is 13 is in her Seeker's Class and learning not only about being a Presbytarian and a Baptist, but learning about all the other faith's of the world. When she is ready to decide which spiritual path she will follow, it will be based in learning and in searching her own heart. UCF has taken our family into their fold and holds us close. The interm pastor, Kathleen Waters, patiently answers my questions (and I have a lot of them) and has helped me to explore my burgeoning relationship with God.

I no longer question, Does God love me? I know that he does. God doesn't pick and choose who he loves. He doesn't put limits on his love. He loves everyone for who they are...even lesbian's like me.


Is blogger acting up or is it just me?

Monday, April 24, 2006

Cancun pictures...

Gillian and Cheryl snorkeling
Gillian snorkeling

Cheryl and Katie at the ruins

Our family

My girls

Katie on the beach

Well, there you have it. I have no idea on how to align the lettering to go under the pictures. Some day I will figure it out. There are no good pictures of me snorkeling, but it was a cool experience. I have lots of underwater pictures also if anyone wants to see them!

Katiism Katie and I were doing some workbook fun this afternoon and one thing was to cut out some fish and paste them onto a background of the ocean underwater. She was chattering away to me about the fish and then tells me "This guy needs to go down here on the sea lemony" (read sea anemone).

We have so much fun and I tell ya, this kid is smart. We are working on writing her letters and today she mastered the small letter e.

Proud Mommy moment....

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Cancun....or BUST!

Well, I am having trouble getting pictures where I want them so we'll see how many show up here! We left for Cancun at the ungodly hour of 6am! You know, all that security and everything. We cleared security and had to wait for a bit for our flight to be called. Here is a picture of Katie and I waiting in the airport. Our flights acutally went smoothly. We had to change in Charlotte and this was the only place where we ran into trouble at the airport. We ended up waiting for over an hour on the tarmac which got us into Cancun an hour later than we were supposed too. There was no food on the plane (what is up with that anyway?) but we had gotten breakfast in Syracuse while we were waiting for our flight and got some sandwiches in Charlotte to take on the plane with us. I had packed snacks too which came in handy. So, being that we were late getting into Cancun, we ran into Cheryl's sister and her family (who only had a 2 hour flight from Fl) and got to hop the shuttle with them to the resort. Let me tell you....those drivers in Mexico are horrible. It is like taking your life in your hand! We had no room for a car seat for Katie (and I am really glad that I decided at the last minute not to haul the car seat along) and there were no seat belts. So, we barreled down the highway at 90 miles an hour. I wish I could tell you how beautiful the scenery was, but I was too busy holding onto Cheryl and praying to God that we would make it safely that I didn't pay any attention to what was zooming past us. Once we got to the hotel, Cheryl's brother Chuck and his son were waiting for us. What a nice welcome. We checked in and got our bracelets (because the Crown Paradise Resort is an all inclusive resort) and went to our rooms to get settled. It was about 3 pm by this time and we arranged to meet everyone for dinner at the Seafood restaurant (yeah, there were 3 restaurants, plus a buffet place). I decided to have a drink and we checked out the surroundings via Christopher (Cheryl's nephew) who had been there for 2 days already and had the lay of the land.

Some of the highlights of the trip included going across the street to a mini ruins where they had iguana's and peacocks running around. Here are a few pictures of the kids enjoying this. OK..blogger is being a pain in the butt and won't let me upload any more let me finish telling you about the trip and tomorrow I will do a separate post with just pictures and captions telling you what they are. So, after the mini ruins, Cheryl and a couple of her nephews, her brother and their mother went to Tulum and saw some very gorgeous ruins. It was really hot and they did a lot of walking (which is why Katie, Gillian and I stayed back). Gillian and I went with Cheryl's sister and her son (who is also 13) and we kayaked in the sea together. It was great fun especially when we thought we saw a dead shark in the water. That turned out to be a stringer of some kind of siver fish that had probably come loose from someone's stringer. The kids wanted to try and wind surf, but they only had 2 windsurfer boards and other people had them during the time we were there. We had a good time doing this but it was hard work paddeling the kayak!

There was child care at the resort and Katie went a couple of times. She was a year too young to go to the kids resort where they had all sorts of kids slides, a pirate boat and some tree houses, but she was content to go to the baby one where they had a little wading pool with a fish slide. One time that she went was when Cheryl was in Tulum and I got to spend some time alone with Gillian swimming and having lunch together. The other time was when Cheryl's mother had her for the morning while we (Cheryl, Gillian and I) went snorkeling. She was fine both times!

The 2 other things we did was go downtown and shop with my SIL and go snorkeling. We had fun, but Katie was overwhelmed and I had to carry her in the sling alot. Gillian, Katie and I did this the day that Cheryl went to Tulum also. People actually grab you and pull you into their shops. People were actually pulling at Gillian's hair begging her to let them braid it. Katie got very overwhelmed (as did I) so we hopped the bus back early while Gillian and Renne (my SIL) stayed back to shop more. Katie thought it was great fun to ride on the bus and we saw lots of interesting kids in carseats, just jumping all over the car, and the police jeep going past us with it full of police officers and one standing on the back bumper holding on while they whizzed down the 4 lane highway. I will say that snorkeling was the highlight of the trip for me. Cheryl and I were originall going to go by ourselves on the trip where you take a jet ski out through the mangroves and snorkel. We had heard that this place was very crowded and that there weren't many fish so we decided to take Gillian and go to another, government protected site. We went with Cheryl's brother and his son and it was a blast! I have lots of great picutures so hopefull I can share them later. It took a bit of getting used to trying to blow through your mouth and not your nose, but after I got the hang of it, it was a BLAST! We saw so many beautiful fish and corral. Gillian had a great time and I was glad that we took her. The teen center at the resort was destroyed by the hurricane and while there was plenty for her and Cody (Cheryl's 13 year old nephew) they didn't have any planned activities for them to do.

We had such a wonderful time. It was nice seeing all of Cheryl's family and spending time with them. I know that my MIL was so happy having all of her family together at the same time. We got some beautiful pictures of everyone together that we will all treasure forever. Katie got to see her cousins, some she had never met. The food was good, but I wouldn't say great. Breakfast was in the buffet and it was good. They had smoothie makers and made to order omelets, waffles, pancakes, and french toast. There was always fresh fruit, bread and really any breakfast food you could ask for. For lunch you could either eat at the buffet place which again had anything you could want and there was also a japenese place that had fresh sushi and sashimi along with stirfy. For dinner they had 3 restaurants open (the other 2 hadn't been rebuilt yet). We ate at all 3. They had a seafood place, a steakhouse and a mexican restaurant.I would have to say that the filet mignon I had at the steakhouse was the best meal I had. We had an awesome view from our room as they are all ocean view. If you want to see the hotel, google Crown Paradise in Cancun Mexico and they have some great pictures....especially one of their endless pool. It really is a sight! We got some cute pictures of Katie on the beach and some great ones of Gillian snorkeling. Again, I will try and post them tomorrow.

Friday, April 21, 2006

So much fun

Last night Cheryl, Gillian and I traveled down to Ithaca NY to see a friend of mine who was doing a book reading on her new book, It was a great reading of a great should go right out and buy it. Anyway, I got to meet Kirsten (the author) and her brand new baby Ridley, who was only a month old! What an adorable baby. I also got to see Gwendolyn. Sorry it's been 2 years since we've been down. We'll try to make it more often. Anyway, it was a nice time. Gillian even enjoyed herself. Katie spent the night at her Grandmothers and they went out and bought a new Dora quilt for her big girl bed. Now Katie has an upset tummy and has been sitting on my lap all day. Let's pray that she doesn't get whatever Cheryl and Gillian brought back from Mexcio! Speaking of Mexico, I have the disc and need to upload the pics to my computer. That is my goal for the weekend...that and writing about the trip before I forget!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

I cannot believe it!

Guess who slept in her own bed all night last night? KATIE! She heard us talking about Friday night and she told us that she wanted to sleep in her own bed last night. So, we got it all ready and gave her a bath. She had 2 stories in her bed and we turned off her light, turned on her nightlight, kissed and hugged her goodnight and left her room. She called for me twice to tell me she loved me and then she fell asleep. By herself. For the first time since she was born. And SHE SLEPT ALL NIGHT! I woke up at 4am (when I usually wake up to take my medication) and got up and checked on her and she was sound asleep. We think we heard her once earlier, but Cheryl got up and she was just talking in her sleep. She woke up at 6:30am which is early for her, and I would have let her go back to sleep except I had to take Cheryl to work today (because we are going to Ithaca tonight to meet 2 internet friends) and we needed to leave by 7:15am. I am still in shock. It felt so weird not to have her there with us, but it was so nice to be able to move around in the bed and not worry about waking her up. And it was nice to be next to my wife all night.....

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The last night

So, tonight is the last night that Katie will be in our bed...hopefully....sadly. We had already decided that once we came back from Cancun, that we would begin the process of moving her out of our bed. She's been there since day 1, and while it was OK in the beginning, she is about 26 pounds heavier and almost 20" longer. She just doesn't fit anymore. Even if she did, I am ready to claim my bed back for me and Cheryl. We have tried before and it just wasn't time. I am sure that it's time now. Now, she will only be a hallway away if she needs us, but right now it feels as though there is a large chasm seperating our room from hers. Gillian was 7 when she moved out and that was too late. Lately, Katie has been telling us that there isn't enough room for her in the bed. I tell her, "well, you have a big bed all to yourself in the other room." She doesn't bite. So, tomorrow she will be spending the night at Grandma's....where incidently she sleeps in her own room and in her own bed without any trouble and then Friday night we will begin the new nighttime routine, ending with her in her own bed. Wish us luck! I guess I will move

But it's going to take me some time. I will post a move address on my other blog so that those who want to can follow me over! If I get some time today I will post some pictures and narrative about our trip to Mexico!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Moving over here?

Who know's what I will do. I am exploring different options and thinking of using this one. Let me know what you think. It seems so much easier!