Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Little Ship

I stood watching as the little ship sailed out to sea. The setting sun tinted his white sails with a golden light, and as he disappeared from sight a voice at my side whispered, "He is gone."

But the sea was a narrow one. On the farther shore a little band of friends had gathered to watch and wait in happy expectation. Suddenly they caught sight of the tiny sail and, at the very moment when my companion had whispered, "He is gone" a glad shout went up in joyous welcome, "Here he comes!"

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

I have an announcement to make.

Ahem. Because apparently my plate isn't full enough-- (I imagine some of my friends and family are snickering.)

--My family has decided to....

M. O. V. E.

Now before you freak out on me...its a relatively small move...just to the town where Addy is going to school. About 10 miles away.

I'm imagining Sally starting to turn red as I move yet further away from the correct side of town. :)

And we are now. I currently have 3 boxes packed up. We have about...oh...3 weeks or so.


Start praying people...Jayme's on the edge!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Gratituesday: Laura Ingalls Wilder

On the way back from our trip to the Hamm Bash...we made a super fun little side stop. And it was sooooo cool. We stopped at the Little House on the Prairie House. It was really cool...even though not their actual is a good replica...and probably very close to the actual location.

The thing I am grateful though is for finding this quote. It is hanging on my bedroom door right now...and I love it. The lady I purchased it from mentioned she thought it should be made into billboards and posted allll over the country. I agree.

"It is best to be honest and truthful, to make the most of what we have, to be happy with simple pleasures, and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong."

--Laura Ingalls Wilder

I'm grateful we stopped as a family.
I'm grateful the girls love these stories.
I'm grateful that LIW is still blessing people.
I'm grateful that because of Jesus...I can be courageous when things go wrong.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

By the Numbers

July 6 - July 12th 2008

10 -- The number of people staying for a week in Grammy and Grandpa's house
12 -- The number of people if Neal and RWR showed up too
15 -- If Sally and the Kernel and the Lil Major came too
2 -- Times we went to the really big super fun pool with super fun slides
400 -- Collective times we went down said super fun slide
1 -- Trip to Exploration Place

4 -- New lovies as souvenirs from a fun trip
3 -- Rides on 2 different carousels
10 -- Times the hose was used for cooling off outside
500 -- Towels used for baths and water fun
400 -- Baths for kids (100 per kid)
7 -- Frogs caught ( I have the froggie eye)

3 -- Scooters Ridden

500,000 -- Loads of laundry done by Crystal and I
4 -- Trips to the library
3 -- Animals on exhibit at a trip to the library (Snake, Salamander, Meal Worm)
2 -- Haircuts done by Grammy
2 -- Space classes put on by the girls
7 -- or 8? planets
75 -- individual juice boxes consumed
500 -- bowls of ice cream we ate

75 -- Trips to the grocery store ... in just one day
2 -- books finished on my 888 list
4 -- buckets and paintbrushes to water paint outside
4 -- movies watched
2 -- batches of cream cheese frosting made
20 -- times I made myself sick eating cream cheese frosting
3 -- bags of toffee Sally made that we ate
2 -- new Mommy bracelets
3 -- sisters that have matching bracelets
4 -- pairs of flip flops said sisters ordered
1 -- Grief support meeting attended
1 -- time I sassed my MIL (or so SHE thought...I was actually innocent)
3 -- flags drawn on the driveway by the RWR

1 million -- Times I missed Gary and Kim

for Laura

This is Diana Gabaldon. I read her book "Outlander." Its good. :)

for Laura

Now THIS is Elie Weisel. Now, and at 15...just before he was put on a train to hell. He is one tough dude. If I met him, I would hug him and say thank you. He is a holocost survivor...who is telling his story so that humanity might learn from such a dark empty time. And so that he can help others. His book is hard to stomach...I feel a little quesy even thinking about it. But he is a very good teller. I salute you, Elie.

for Laura

This is Lemony Snicket. He wrote those fun silly "A Series of Unfortunate Events" books. I think they are really cute. The first book "The Bad Beginning" was on my 888 list under the "Just for Fun" category. His real name is Daniel Handler. I like Lemony much better. :)

for Laura

This is Avi. He is a writer. He wrote "The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle." It is actually a book for young readers...but I read it and thought it was really good. And other people must think so too...because I had a terrible time catching it in the library. He has crazy hair. Maybe you should cut it. :)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Kim's Birthday

July 16th. Would have been...should have been...Kim's Birthday.

And the only course of action was to go. To her grave. On her day. And to put flowers on her a way to honor her. Sigh. And it was hard.

I took the girls with me. Neal and Addy have been discussing what a soul is...and how Kim and Gary are still living. And where their bodies are. Tough stuff.

And of course...they are only buried about 5 miles from the field they died once again I drove there. But of course the car is gone now. I cried. The path of the tornado is still so visible.

And this time at the graves, the headstone is up. And its weird to put it on my blog...but whatever. I'm feeling a little frazzled from the trip and the emotional upheavel...but I know that I will still be ok. And there is a least another first out of the way. Two even. The first time it was Kim's birthday -- and the first time seeing the stone.

Neal's parents stone is already up for a future day. I informed Neal's dad as soon as we got out of the car that HE got the lovely job of explaining to Addy why there are TWO stones instead of one. Because believe me...she noticed and asked about it right away. CREEEEEPY!

I took daisies...because she loved two super fun bright colors. Because...those are the ones she would have picked I think. And then I took white roses for for Gary...and pink that symbolized the beauty they made together.

And I shared some daisies with a special aunt...who I know is enjoying being with Gary and Kim. (I love you, Laura!)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Gratituesday: Music Machine edition (thanks Sally)

With a ball of white string
I can do many things
Tie a bow on a gift for you

Fly a kite free
Tie a star to a tree
Strap a sling
Make a ring for a trick or two

Twirl and
Wind things

Tie up and Bind things

But there are some things that string can never do

String can't bind a broken heart
when its been torn apart
Mend a friendship that's almost through

Can't pull hate out
Tie up fear
Wrap out doubt

String is useless when it comes to me and you


I'm grateful for the one who does what string cannot do.
Check out Laura at Heavenly Homemakers who is hosting Gratituesday.

My Healing Experience continue my last is what happened that finally brought me some peace in my grief.

My cousin, the (amazing, kind, compassionate, and gifted) counselor, said, "There are some things we could do to help you. It won't take away your grief, but we can help you from drowning in it. Do you want to?"

Yes. Oh yes please.

She took me inside and had me hold out my arm. She had me say, "My name is Jayme." And then she tried to push my arm down. And she couldn't. Then she had me say, "I am a boy." I couldn't keep my arm up that time. For anything.

As I understand subconscious mind controls your heartbeat, breathing, and muscle activation and deactivation. So...if your subconscious mind really knows the appropriately activates and deactivates your muscles in response to stimulus. And in this case -- the stimulus was her questioning me in relation to my grief.

(I could be explaining this so badly it might even be untrue...but its how I got it.)

She prayed first for us...and then I couldn't even really hear her...would ask me things. And she so gently and kindly reminded me that Satan wants to feed us lies, to keep us in bondage. And if Satan could get me believing lies...especially about Gary and Kim's grief would be turned into a prison. She was so patient and kind and compassionate. She one at a time found the lies I was believing...and helped me to break them. Or helped me to let the Spirit break them. It was really a much more spiritual thing than a physical one.

She was soooo gifted by the Lord at this.

She would ask me things...that my arm indicated to be true...that I wouldn't have been able to straight out tell you was true. For example, if you asked me if I was mad at Gary and Kim...I would have said, "Of course not. Sometimes things just happen and its no ones fault." (Front Brain response) However, my subconscious answered, "I need to forgive Gary and Kim for dying." I couldn't keep my arm from betraying my deepest thoughts. ARGGGGGGGGGG! Laura was sitting right there with me...and it was a horrific experience (and really comforting and good) having to admit in front of her that I was mad at them for dying on me...and really I was mad at Gary for not stopping and spending the night in Pratt. Or say...mad at God. If you asked me...I would have said..."No. I'm not mad. He has a plan. And he is good...and I'm ok with his plan."

I wouldn't have been able to say...

"I need permission to be happy again. I can't be happy again and honor Gary and Kim."
"I am a bad person if I am happy."
"I am never ever ever ever again going to be ok."
"I have to be responsible for the survival of my family. It is my job to keep them safe and keep something like this from happening to them. I have to keep them alive."

Truths she gave me:
The only way to honor Gary and Kim, is to live fully and enjoy my girls and my husband. Gary and Kim loved my girls...and enjoyed them. Enjoying my girls honors them. Not by being devastated forever.
I will be ok. Because God is a good God whose love is healing and powerful and amazing. And I WILL be ok. And they would want me to be ok.
I am not a bad person for being happy. God gave us our families...and I am hanging onto all the super fun things to do in the fall with my kids.
God is responsible for my family not me. He holds life in HIS hands not mine.

Each time she found a lie in my heart, she would have me say, "I reject the lie that...." And then she would very gently replace that lie with truth. God's truth. I was so not hearing truth...I was hearing lies. And some of those rejections were really really really hard for me to say. And sometimes I still have to remind myself what is lie and what is truth. But now that I am not bound by those lies...I am so much better...and am beginning to think there is a the end of my tunnel (thank you L) and that one day...he will restore all my joy.

She also did some cool stuff to help allll the parts of my brain to work on the problem of their death. Not just my emotions. My logic too. And since we store emotion in our bodies...she helped clear out allllll the yuck...and put in some good.

I am soooooo much better. And I'm ok with being better. Woooo. My heart still hurts...and I miss them soooo much. But I would say...I don't feel tortured anymore.

So to echo Laura, .... DON'T BELIEVE THE LIES!!!!!!!! Although...its helpful to identify the lie first. :)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Remembering the Friday of the Hamm Bash

We woke up Friday morning (the 4th) and got mostly ready. Mostly ready because Crystal and I were taking the kids first thing over to Golden Corral for breakfast...and we didn't want to ruin their matching outfits with syrup. And it was a good thing too...because P.M. spilled yogurt head to toe right off the bat. I wish I had taken a picture of THAT.

(And we stayed in a pretty cheap hotel...but the girls and I really enjoyed our time in the rented space. Addy thought it was a palace. ahahahahahha)

After breakfast we went in search of the RWR who had skipped breakfast in favor of a walk. He walked so far we had to get pick him up...but he found a really really nice park to get picked up in. So we let the cousins run around at the playground for awhile. They had a great time. I noticed that in that same area was a mini-golf park...and a pool. Is it crazy that I think Dewey might be a fun vacation spot?

Then we headed back to clean all up for lunch. Lunch was yummy. And then the rest of the afternoon was for visiting and relaxing.

Crystal and I spent some time connecting with some cousins who had also lost a brother in a car thing (thing because I can't say accident). Terry died like 13 years ago...and it was sooooo helpful to hear them talk about their own experiences with grief. And now I know them so much better. And I think they are both so special and funny. And they were so gracious to talk and talk and talk to us.

And then Crystal and I sat down to make cards. She had never made cards...and it was so fun watching her discover the pure bliss of designing and making your own card. We have continued to get out the stamp and paper goodies this week. This however...makes my heart miss Kim, because she was a card maker too...and she would have LOVED this year at the Hamm Bash.

Somewhere in all this...the Kernel...was found writhing in pain from a dislocated shoulder. My heart just about exploded for him. He is so big and strong and steady that it was awful to watch him hurt so bad. And I thought Sally just might throw up from watching him hurt so bad. He finally got it to go back in...but not before turning the color of dirty paper. Earlier in the afternoon...I beat him at ping pong. :) I'm sure the injury was due to my bootie-whipping ping pong skills. I even managed to beat the RWR once ... but mostly he did the whipping.

And that evening, Laura and her family FINALLY arrived...and we got to cry and talk and hug and that was soooooo good. And I kept thinking while we stood there hugging and crying, how it just wasn't right that our meeting this time was so...not the happy reunion of blogging buddies it was supposed to be. grrrrrrr.

During all this the kids got to watch movies.

After dinner, which was awesome, I mentioned they showed videos. The first video was the video that Sally, Crystal, and I put together of Gary and Kim for the funeral. It was followed by one of the news broadcasts with an interview from Wayland and Millie. I knew it would hard to watch again...but I didn't really expect it to rip through me. I was shaking, and sobbing (loudly), and I could hardly sit still. I wanted to throw up. All I could think was, "THEY AREN'T HERE--THEY AREN'T HERE--THEY AREN'T HERE." I had been having a hard time anyway. Walking in the door to the Bash each time...knowing they weren't inside. Getting everyone in a circle to pray...and they weren't there. Watching everyone family whole and complete...and ours had a horrifically huge hole. It was awful. And I kept thinking I was never ever ever ever again going to be OK. I was melting over and over. But the video was the last straw and totally did me in. Millie told everone after the video how thankful she was for them, all the prayers and support, and that each day they were getting better, and how they were going to be ok. I screamed in my head...I WILL NEVER BE OK!!!!

I finally passed off a sleeping Ellie and ran outside to cry and breathe deeply by myself. And by the time I got back...there were several concerned family members waiting for me at the front door. And then next...I had the most helpful, most healing, most revealing, most awesomest experience ever...and I think...just maybe...I might be ok.

I'm saving the telling of that experience for the next post...because it deserves its own.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Gratituesday: Hamm Bash edition

I am so super thankful that my family is so close. And I'm so super thankful that the kids in my family love to be cousins. Before the Bash...Crystal, Lizzy, Addy, and I went a little crazy for matching outfits for the girls. So fun. Here is what we came up with. And I am just so thankful for these beautiful girls who are such good friends.

Here are their matching shoes:

Here are their Kung Fu Moves:

And here is the boy cousin, my Precious Moment, who calls me Aunt Mayme. I love it:

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Kiddie Park

There is this amazing little Kiddie Park tucked away in Dewey, OK. My super fun sister-in-law Crystal and RWR and their two kids Lizzy and Precious Moment came to Dewey on Thursday so we all got to go together. It is like the best kept secret in OK. Its designed for little kids...Lizzy was even too big for some of them. There is no cost to get in ... and the ride tickets only cost 25 cents...and most rides only cost one ticked...and the rides last a LONG time. The kids had SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much fun. And there is a big train that takes a ride around the whole park that adults can rid on too. There is even a tunnel that the train goes through. Ellie thought this was big fun.

And there was a wonderful carousel to ride on. The girls fell in love with their horses and named them Buttercup, Icing, and Brownie.

The World's Smallest Ferris Wheel:

A super cool PINK truck:

Gotta Love the Dora Boat:

Flying High:

We had so much fun! What a deal!

The Hamm Bash 2008

What is the Hamm Bash you say???'s a family reunion plus. Every year around the Fourth of July is the Bash. And it IS a reunion...but just more fun than a typical gathering.

Neal's mom Millie came from a family of 9.
Caroline --She died of cancer in 2002. Ellie has her name for a middle name.
Clifford --He drowned when Millie was in high school. I'm sad I didn't know him.

And they allll have kids who have kids who have babies. The Hamm family is huge. And I think they are cream of the crop kind of people. And since we meet at least once a year...we all know each other pretty well. And each year I know more of them more and more and better. I am very proud of this family I am in...and I love them all soooo very much.

So...when this many people get can't just sit around and look at each have to DO something. And I have been to 12 of these Bashes...and each time I go I love it more than the last. They are all a little different...but in general...they have the same format. Here is a general rundown of the weekend...with more specific details to follow.

This year:
Thursday--We met for a hot dog cookout and then we all headed to a super fun amazing Kiddie Park.
Friday--In the morning the boys went golfing and the girls met to scrapbook and make cards. There were movies projected for the kiddos. (Also there was a super cool play area Ellie hardly left.) There was some ping pong going on (I totally beat The Kernel and I played the RWR but only won like once). We had a yummy sandwich lunch and then played games and did more cards and then had a yummy dinner. There was also some ping pong going on. There was homemade ice cream out the WaZoo. Friday evening there was some videos shown. Then there was family worship. Then out to view fireworks.
Sat--A yummy pancake breakfast was followed up with a family meeting. Next came my favorite part. THE AUCTION!!!!!!!!! Everyone makes and brings things and usually a real live auctioneer (Go John!) auctions off the stuff. This year he missed out for something more important. I forgive him. :) Then all the kids line up to whack at a homemade pinata that just rocks. And we ended with another yummy lunch.

There is lots of visiting, teasing, laughing, crying, hugging, and loving. I wouldn't trade this family for a million dollars.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

those summer days

Can I tell you a secret??? Good. Summer is my least favorite season. It hasn't always been...but in the past five years...summer has meant "enduring a painful season of life." And the glorious fall usually bring a softer, gentler, easier life. I had plans for this summer...for the summer to be redeemed from its formally painfull state. Those plans went up in smoke...well...not really smoke...more like a tornado.
Anyway..I've been stuggling lately to find some good things to fill the days until the blessed coming of September. The beginning of a release of all thing oppressive. In my mind anyway. So here is a small tribute to my "summer recovery program."
Recover Strategy #1:
Spend Lots of Time at the Pool

Recovery Strategy #2:
Catch Frogs--These pictures are hard to see. I wasn't about to take the 6 peeing frongs inside to get a better picture. We can catch so many frogs just walking around our apartments. My girlie girls and I love this...which is crazy since none of us would dare touch one.

Recovery Strategy #3:
Paint. Even at night in the dark...even if it gets on the sidewalk. Oops.

Recovery Strategy #4
Eat lots of ice cream. With Grandpa.

Recovery Strategy #5
Make a fun new project (for the Hamm Bash--more on that later) BURPIES!

Recovery Strategy #6
Love on Lil Major --tilt your head...I couldn't get it to flip.

Recovery Strategy #7
Play Ball (Addy is #1)

Recovery Stategy #8
Visit with old friends (Meshellyn and her baby Em)