Saturday, July 31, 2010

Zippity do dah

It is not that I am afraid of heights.

But I was scared to climb this pole.

It was easy.

I wanted to jump right off like Morgan

and Kathi.

But I whimped out.

The view was beautiful.

I was flying—such fun—until . . .

I started worrying about the dismount.

“Easy. . .
No problem," I was told.

“Just run up the hill.”

“Nope, no one has ever broken a leg.”

But then, came the part that had me nervous.

“You may need to run backwards.”


“You’ll see. It is no problem.”

And guess who came in backwards.

No graceful running up the hill like RaeJean.

I was hoping for something like Chariots of Fire.

But no broken leg either.

I am thankful that part was right.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Precious Faces of Summer

Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
Dust off the sun and moon and sing a song of cheer . . .

I am so proud of Morgan. She overcame her fear of bees
and worked with Grandpa in two beeyards for four hours.

Ryan: "Do you happen to have any bad ones to tame?"

Seamus—our "professional" biker

Jackson the kneeboarder, high diver, water wonder . . .

Lilly the boat driver and so much more

Two sweetest: the oldest and youngest
Great Grandma (94 years) and Allie (6 weeks)

Jacob--swinging high--the truck man

Hale--his face tells all.

Grif--seeing life from another perspective

Yay! White Sox in first place at the All Star break.

Jessica--fisherman, cayaker, expert tuber

Steven is our best skier--Gets up on one ski

Sorry the picture doesn't go with the words.
It is hard to get a good ski photo from the beach.
Steven is a jack of all trades.

David--the baseball, basketball and football player

Kent--the Leader of the Pack
In so many ways . . .

Kent went on a two week canoe trip this summer.

Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
You'll wish that summer could always be here.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Like Father, Like Daughter?

It is so tough to be objective.

I could be wrong about this.

The first photo is Dale holding his son, Andy. They were watching a Cubs game on WGN. Yes, I recognize that is random unnecessary information. I do that. Sometimes. Okay, many times. Being aware of it sort of makes it seem like less of a problem.

The second photo is Jessica holding her cousin Allie, daughter of Andy--the baby in the top photo. Jessica is ten years old and a good little fisherman. I just needed to include something a bit random here to balance out the pragraphs.

And here is one more of Andy. I wish I had one of him smiling just a bit.

And another of Allie. Do they have the same chin?

She is enjoying the comparison.

Then again, I could be wrong.

One more photo . . .

This is me. Andy's mom. Allie's Grandma.
At about three months.
Okay so probably I am stretching it a bit.

It is fun to lay claim on sweet baby Allie.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

He said, "We'll ship it to you."

A sad thing happened in June.

I went to a wedding in Santa Barbara, California.

That is not the sad thing.

The wedding was really quite unique and happy and a hot affair.

In fact the little ring bearer refused to wear a shirt—because of the triple digit temperature—at least in the sun.

No one seemed to object.

The groom took off his shirt at the reception.

I wanted to object but I did not. I wondered if he knew that his belly was showing.

Perhaps some guests were impressed by the groom's tattoos. I am not an experienced judge of that art—mostly always being too restrained by inhibitions to do close examinations.

A very famous country singer aka CS attended the wedding and I won’t mention her name because I don’t want my blog showing up when strangers google her name. She was very gracious and kind and beautiful and I liked her very much. Though tempted, I was controlled and did not ask for an autograph or a photo with her but I did ask her to write a song about cousins because she and I both love our cousins. I am waiting and watching and hoping for a dedication. This photo shows the groom’s mama and CS hugging but you really cannot really see much of famous CS who is married to a famous fantasy husband CS and it was an accident that this photo got taken—mostly. So her identity is safe with me.

Now to the sad part.

I will just be blunt—I left my camera and my case and an extra battery in the rental car in Santa Barbara. I was not rushed. It was not my hubby’s fault. I did not jump out of the car to help a person in distress and then get so busy helping that I was distracted. I just got out of the car, slowly, never looked around and left it in plain view.

By phone, I located my camera the following day, June 6th. However, I did not receive my loved and lost and greatly mourned and missed camera until July 2nd. There were many many important events during those almost 4 weeks. Some sympathizers graciously offered to loan me a camera. However, they did not throw caution to the wind. Perhaps knowing that I am predisposed to losing things they did not risk their best cameras. Even so, rather than be indebted to them for the rest of my life, I mostly declined their offers.

Later, out of desperation, I did borrow DIL Amy’s camera for five days. I attached it to my hip —trying hard to camouflage the carrier that is not usually allowed in public but no adults that knew me were present. I kept my eyes peeled for the fashion police, prepared to gasp and gingerly toss it in a garbage can if discovered.

On about the fourth day, one of my young trendy grands asked me—“Why do you always wear that?”

On the fifth day, I left the fanny pack at home and dangerously toted a purse all day and proudly announce today that the borrowed camera and my cell phone made it home again safely. Although I will admit that I was exhausted from all that responsibility.

Six weeks and three days Three weeks and six days after I left said item in a rental car and a full eleven days after my grandchildren returned to North Carolina and Colorado, I received my camera in the mail. It went by boat to New York, through the Great Lakes and then by Pony Express to my home. It is dry and working perfectly well again which is much better than the last time my camera took a boat ride.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Tickled Pink

Subtitle: Party Poopers are Not Invited

Perhaps everybody does stupid things from time to time that they regret. Usually time passes and people forget those bad decisions and do not hold those against you. Occasionally though some just stick around and make it into random conversations. For example, Did you do any blob jumping at Miracle Camp this year? may sound like a perfectly innocent question but it is not. I could list at least 100 variations of that question that I heard this summer.

There is another ST that I did that just won’t go away. . . actually there are probably lots but this is another summer one that I am reminded of annually.

Nineteen years ago, in 1991, our family had a reunion. It was my mother’s family—her siblings and their children. I love this old picture. The me in the picture is my mother.

My mother was one of ten children. There were six boys and four girls. I have lots of cousins. Some of us are in this old photo.

And here is another photo of us doing what we do best together.
But I digress.

In 1991, each of the ten families were requested to make a t-shirt for their family of various colors. By the time, I was asked to make
t-shirts for our family, colors like blue and purple and red and white had already been chosen. I don’t know why I did not choose green. That has been my regret for all of these 19 years. I chose pink—hot pink. There is more . . . I used ridiculous little figures to represent our family. You can see them in the photo. I cannot remember what in the world I was thinking. Goodness.

Two of my nephews did not come to that reunion. Brian had a reasonable excuse. I am pretty sure that Jon did not come because there was no way, no how that he was going to wear a hot pink t-shirt for any family picture. I always think of the Boy Named Sue song. Perhaps wearing a hot pink t-shirt would have been good for him.

My siblings and their kids and Dad and Kay all eventually acquiesced and wore the t-shirts and were even photographed wearing the shirts. However no one in our family has ever quite forgiven me for those hot pink-that-should-have-been-forest-green-or-even-ebony-black t-shirts. Remember those ridiculous pink t-shirts that Aunt Brenda made us wear?

It came up again recently.

We have Rupp Girl Cousin Reunions every other year. They are very special and very fun.

This year we were in Shipshewana, Indiana for three days. Our cousins from Uncle Victor’s family were our hostesses. We learned about our Mennonite roots . . .

Played lots of fun games . . .

Some swam in the pool . . .

We ate dinner at an Amish home . . .

Got caught up on family news . . .

Took buggy rides . . .

Laughed lots . . .

And we also prayed for each other.
It was all wonderful and very well planned.

Our hostesses were Uncle Victor's daughters . . .
Jeanann, Janet, Judy and Charlene.

They did a cute skit about the hats that we wear.

And then presented us with our very own Amish bonnets, made exclusively for us by Cousin Judy.

Then out of the blue here it came again . . . Judy told us that
she did her best to match the color of our bonnets with our
infamous 1991 t-shirts.

Our family received beautiful blushing pink bonnets. Thankfully, hot pink would not be appropriate in an Amish world.

My sisters, Sheila, Donna—also a blogger with a hat post and another post as well about this event—
and sister Lou and yours truly, proudly donned our bonnets.

I am glad that only the second generation girl cousins and girl cousins-in-love are invited to this gathering. I am quite certain, that given the opportunity, nephew Jon would have boycotted and refused to be in our photo.