Friday, July 29, 2011

I'll Take Mine Bent, Thanks

The majority of people feel more comfortable when things are smooth, even, undistorted and straight as an arrow. Nothing is more annoying than when you're dining in a restaurant and your table wobbles (sugar packets anyone?).

Life seems easier when our kids and coworkers walk a straight line. Our moms always told us to "stand up straight". And wouldn't it be nice if there were a manual with clear directions for raising kids?

Straight is defined in the dictionary as with a bend, angle or curve; not curved; direct: a straight path. 

Ah, wouldn't life be so much easier if there was a guide book to that path? If God would shine a bright light down on just where we needed to go and what we needed to do? But as I get older I am learning that straight isn't always perfect and I need the bends to teach me how to be more straight and make life more adventurous. 

I remember my mom once saying, "if we were all exactly alike life would be boring".

I didn't understand it then but, now I do and am so glad for the bends in people and in life. Because of this, when we do go back south to visit family and friends I appreciate them more than I ever did and when we encounter bumps along the way; which we always do, I get frustrated and upset like most people but when I later reflect on it, it teaches me something that "bumps" me back on that right path. 

Without sharing all of the bumps and bends, I'll tell you about the rest of our Georgia vacay. 

On our last morning at Grammy's she fixed us a delicious breakfast which included yogurt, fruit and granola parfaits. As you can see, they were a huge hit. 
So much so that Hunter had to put his feet up on the table to further indulge while continually looking up at Grammy to say "Mmmmmm!"
After breakfast we headed to my BFF's house. She and her son Hayden were waiting for us at the end of the driveway when we arrived which is always the best when you arrive at someone's house. It makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
We played some basketball,
saw Hayden's cool new (real!) camper, and rode in his Jeep which was ideal for hilly roads.

 Hayden was so helpful with Emerson. I kept getting tickled at the way he carried her. Normally she would have been yelling at the top of her lungs but she didn't seem to mind Hayden doing it at all.
(It just goes to show that some bends in the road we don't mind taking because of who we're with.)
 I think she might have a little thing for him.
 Dave was so sweet and offered to take the kids on up to his parents' house so I could get some one-on-one with my bestest friend in the whole wide world.

(Meet Jennifer. My go-to girl when my road gets a little bumpy.)
Not only is she gorgeous but she is witty, smart, an amazing decorator, seamstress, 
and one of the world's best Mommas.
(My kids love when she gets their "num nums".)
 (I caught this sweet moment when Hayden was playing with Jennifer's hair. 
You can tell he appreciates what an amazing mom she is.)
Not only is she a great mom but she has raised a son that is more powerful than a locomotive and can leap tall buildings in a single bound all while only being equipped with a backpack, plastic suction cup gun, powerful net-ball-catcher and a cute boy scowl. Arrrghhhh!!!
 (More importantly, he is generous, kind, thoughtful and polite.)
After a long fun stay at my favorite girl's house, she and Hayden took me to see their Daddy's new business. I was very impressed! He joined us for the ride out to Dave's parents house where the favorite activity was watering the plants....and the deck....and our feet....and our clothes.

 (Emerson loves Hayden's daddy too.)

 (Big Brother and his perpetual runny nose which is endearing.)
Hayden is a great teacher and Sissy loved learning new things from him. I think she secretly wishes he was a big brother.
 The weather and scenery were so nice than we spent a lot of time on the deck. Hunter loved having a full view of nature's best work.
We enjoyed some of BaBa's beer cheese dip (this stuff will make you weak in the knees its so good!) and delicious brownies then said our goodbyes.

 Some (little) people don't seem to get the importance of finding the ultimate photo op spot (case in point--cool tree below). The adults were right on cue but the kids weren't having it.
 (The tree was having its fun with the photo too.)
After a short drive, we met up with P-Pa and Kiki at the lake house they had reserved for our mini-getaway-vacation. 
(With Kiki there is always dancing involved which we love!)

 (This is one of Hunter's current favorites. 
He loves when someone lifts him into the air so he can say, "Hunter jump!".)

And anything Big Brother does.....
After putting the kids down for bed, I coerced everyone else into watching a movie with me since it had been a very, very long time since I'd see one and I'm a movie-lovin' girl. We all got a good night's rest and then were up bright and early for some breakfast....
 (G-Pa's name became P-Pa. Hunter liked the sound of that better I guess.)
...and a little one-on-one time with Bailey (a.k.a the other baby in this family).
Hunter even shared his Puppy and sippy with Bailey which is something he only does with those he truly loves.
Sissy chose to stay on the sidelines as Bailey's bark and size seemed a little too big.
After breakfast we headed to the lake for some fun.  

 Kiki put on a seaweed mustache and deep man voice that Hunter found hilarious.
Hmmm, does a lake even have seaweed? Which brings up what we debated that week....what exactly is floating in the lake? 

Julie's daughter Keri and her husband Dave joined us with their little cutie who was also trying to figure out what that green stuff was.
Emerson was very intrigued at the hide-and-seek game Daddy was playing with her.

 (My stepsister who is a gorgeous mom.)
Our little peanuts are only nine days apart. 
 Adorable picture alert:

 After showers and some eats we sat on the front screened porch and enjoyed the swing, rocking chairs....
 (A new friendship was blossoming and it was so cute to watch.)
...and wine.
(Meet my new glass which I felt was totally appropriate for me.)
I love me some Sissy smiles.
 ...and sombers,
...and sippys.

 While I was busy fussing with my camera, little found something she likes.

 See that smile? Wondering if I should be worried about this?
 Fortunately, Daddy saved the day with a favorite distraction.
The day ended with more good food, fun conversation, and a lot of this......
The rest of the vacation had some minor bumps and curves but fun conversation, great food and a whole lotta love was hero.
(As babies we comfortably rely on fingers and thumbs for comfort. 
Yet, as adults we tend to look to outside sources instead of relying confidently on some part within us.)
Caution: cute hinney alert.
Inside we had very busy toddlers practicing newly acquired skills,
(Something that is so nice about staying in a rental is that when their windows are dirty,
you don't feel even a tinge of guilt.)

while outside we had one very busy spider. (I wonder how many twists and turns his road takes him?)
Meanwhile, one cute little girl headed back to the pool for adventure.
(She tests the scales between being very independent....)
(...and not quite sure of herself.)
(Not quite sure of the road before her she will cry or whine to make sure 
someone she loves will be there to give a hand if she chooses to take it.
As an adult I find myself doing this too sometimes. You know you can do it but,
in case you fall, you want to know that person you trust is going to catch you.)
(I love how long her hair is getting and those sweet curls.)
And adventure she got.

It's not as often but, I love me some Sissy scrunch-nose when I can get it.

P-Pa, Kiki and her mom, MeMoo, soon joined us at the pool.

Hunter took his first dive off the diving board. It was a road not yet traveled and a little bumpy since he didn't know what laid beneath him. He hesitated at first....
and a little more,
and just a wee bit longer to make sure he was ready.
Then he took the plunge,

and he's never looked back since!

(Pretty proud of this photo I got.)
With straight roads you always know what you're gonna get. But, with bends in the road, you have excited anticipation of what's to come just around the corner--great triumph, a sense of accomplishment, a new fulfilling relationship, or that next delicious snack.

When you let yourself go and take those unexpected turns, you may encounter accidents, scrapes and bruises or learn someone has moved your potty but, the longer you ride that road the more comfortable and better you get.
Sure, life would be easy if we had direct access to that straight path in life. But, I think I'll take my road bent, curvy and bumpy.  Although I will regularly face the unknown, I am confident its a path that will lead me straight to a life of adventure. (Thank you P-Pa and Kiki for our awesome vacay in Bent Tree! Can't wait to do it again! And, to the rest of our family and friends--so happy we are riding this bumpy road in life together! WE LOVE YOU!)

Now click on this link, listen to the song, reread this post and leave me a comment about what bend in the road you are looking forward to next.