Community

Monday morning around 4 am our van was stolen from our secure parking garage. No other vehicles were stolen or have been stolen from this parking garage. All the car seats, reusable bags, and toys that had been on the floor were put into a neat pile in our parking spot.  At 9:15 am we went down the elevator to take the girls to swimming class and were greeted by the ornate collection of the inner but no van.

Yes, there are video cameras. Yes, they got footage of the person. No, I have not seen the video.

Monday was the day for adrenalin. Tim took the girls in the VW Bug to the end of swimming class and then off to dance class. I stayed with Finnian and made all the calls to the sheriff, insurance, and our friends about using their van. As much as we have loved the Bug and used it as a family car when we were just four, we simply will not all fit in the four seat car with five people and three being in car seats.  We are blessed to have our community. We are able to borrow our friends van while trying to figure everything out.  As I was sitting in the office waiting to talk to the sheriff, I was trying to think what was still in the van…the girl’s skis, girl’s ski boots, our Bob single stroller, and Finnian’s new Keen shoes I got at the multiple sale…tears start to creep.

They are just things…we are all ok. Everything can be replaced, and the whole day, I was just so thankful that they left the car seats…if only they had took out those shoes.

Tuesday-Wednesday I just wanted to lay in bed all day. Reality started to sink in that we are going to have to be looking for a new van.  We are going to have to figure out money…money we don’t have.  Heavy…more and more heaviness.  I got a lot of phone calls and text messages but everything just seemed so heavy.  Our van isn’t worth that much.  We had just put a lot of money into it a week before…quite possibly as much as the van is worth.

I finally found the energy to call State Farm back on Wednesday.

Good news: We have $0 deductible that will cover the van, snow chains, and jumper cables.  We have renters insurance that will cover the other items.

Bad news: There is a 21 day waiting period to see if the van is recovered.  Our renters insurance is a $1000 deductible.

It is hard to not ask, “why us?” but I’m thinking of all the little blessings…the car seats were not taken…our friends are letting us use their van until we figure everything out…getting a jogging stroller from Edmonds Mom’s for free Thursday… friends bringing me bags of shoes for Finnian…and just simple faith that it will all work out.  It is useless to just dwell on the weight of what this means when I know it will be ok in the long run.  Something will work out.  It always does.

When I was cleaning up in our room Wednesday I found one of the Keen shoes I thought was in the van.  I looked around and finally found the mate.  I cried…over shoes. It was the hope that I had lost being restored in something so simple.  I’m still saddened by everything that was taken.  I am just trying to find the silver lining within what we have and the community that constantly supports us.  This is just a minor set back in the big picture that feels like an avalanche.  In the mean time, if you could keep an eye out for our green Mercury Villager and those little skis we would be grateful.

Flowers from Christina

Flowers from Christina

Ladders

I was in about first grade when I went with my mom to get her hair cut.  We spent a summer in Boise while my dad was smoke jumping when my mom found this salon around the block from our rental house.  More importantly, in this salon was her favorite beautician. The beautician was so beloved that when we moved away my mom would try and go to her whenever we happened to be in the area.  During one of these trips to Boise my mom got squeezed in at the last minute with the beautician.  I sat in the chair next to her as hair rained down to the floor.  About half way through the cut the beautician got a phone call.  We sat there for awhile and the lady came back out-of-sorts and grabbed her personal things.  Another beautician came and finished my mom’s hair.  The lady’s husband was on a roof and fell off.  He became paralyzed from the neck down that warm Boise day while his wife was cutting my mom’s hair.  I’ll never forget that day.  I’ll never forget that moment when I looked at the beautician’s ashen face and the look of her coworkers supporting her out of the building.  And the fearful worry that swept into everyone in the room.  Her life would never be the same.  It just took one phone call to change everything for this lady.

Tim is on ladders everyday at work.  Some of his coworkers even rappel off of the buildings downtown Seattle to get their job done.  It is a pretty awesome job from my point of view.  He gets to go into million dollar properties, has talked with the son of Eddie Bauer who started the chain store, been in famous peoples vacation homes, seen the poor run down places, had a child around the age of 2 answer the door to an empty apartment…he gets to see Seattle area life rich and poor/good and bad.  The perk of it all is that Tim gets to see views from roof tops that no one else gets to see.

Rooftop in Seattle

Rooftop in Seattle

Today I got this text from Tim:

I love you. I’m ok but Nathaniel fell off a ladder and is going to the hospital.  He is conscious but hurt. Fire just left. I’m still a little shaken up.

Two thoughts at reading this…shock and relief.  I was at MOPs (Mothers of Preschoolers) and I had pulled out my phone to take notes because there was not extra paper.  As I open my phone I read his text and walk out of the room to call.  Nathaniel was just under 30 feet on his ladder before it slipped.  Tim was the first to find him and called 911.  I walked back in the room and distantly listened to the rest of the speaker.  I burst into tears telling my table what had happened during discussion.  I was just so relieved it wasn’t Tim.  I kept thinking about it…what if I got a call saying Tim was on his way to Harborview? How would I get the kids and drive there?

A quick update and a huge praise! I just got another text from Tim saying that Nathaniel has no broken bones just messed up teeth and they have released him from the hospital. Heavy exhale!

I was just so numb and completely selfish earlier today.  I’m selfishly thanking God it was not Tim.  Selfishly thinking I’m so happy I’m not the ash faced beautician from my childhood.  I just can’t be in the trenches of raising three kids without him alive and well.  I don’t want to do it without him.  All the fights and friction we have been having seem to feel so irrelevant.  I love him! I LOVE him! I LOVE HIM.  He is all the mushiness of those lovey stuff to me.

Super Hero family

Super Hero family

A Runner Runs Through It

Last night after the kids had gone to bed I started to feel sick to my stomach.  It was just a little annoying and the next thing I knew I was saying goodbye to dinner.  The interesting thing about this nauseousness what eating seemed to help.  So I had some cocoa and went to bed.  All night long I kept waking up and dry heaving.  While going to the bathroom this morning, Ari walked into the room and asked with a really concern face, “Why isn’t there a baby in your tummy?”

WTF?! Can it be? Could it be? Again?!

I was pretty freaked out and also 99.9% sure I couldn’t be pregnant. I kept just looking at Finnain and saying “I can’t have another baby, I already have one.”  And doing the math there would be a year and 9 months between the ‘baby’ and Finnian and 3 years 10 months between the ‘baby’ and the girls…4 UNDER THE AGE OF 4???

Before I carry on too long and get everyone else sweating…I’m not.  So you ask what did I do with this news?

I register for my first…………………….FULL……………………..MARATHON!!

26.2 miles of Montana road here I come!

A Thankful Feminist

A couple weeks ago Tim and I went on a youth staff retreat for our church.  The retreat is designed to plan for the year, connecting about our goals, and bonding as leaders.  This will be our fifth year on the youth staff team and we both really enjoy the role.  One of the topics that we were talking about is coming up with some core things we would like to see become our identity as a group.  One of the things that was proposed was to BE THANKFUL.

BE THANKFUL…

The idea that you are thankful and not a complainer.  BOOM, it hit me hard.  I don’t want to be a complainer, I want to be thankful.

But…

How can someone always be thankful and be honest and be able to talk about things that are frustrating without complaining?  There is this idea that if you need to vent and not complain the difference is this physical HURT.  If something is going on that hurts your person so bad that you can feel it in your body.  That it is so hurtful that it makes your stomach clinch it isn’t complaining if you try and talk about it.  Having a messy house, being constantly on Kuhnau time (10-30 minutes late), or not being able to find parking are COMPLAINING things.

Feeling discriminated against because I’m a female during job assignments at Esperanza, when deciding who will drive, and feeling other people put limits on me are things that really…physically…HURT.  Those are the things that make me cry.   It has always hurt for someone who doesn’t know my ability to look at me and then look at a male counterpart and ask the male to do a task.  If they don’t know my ability and both myself and the male have no experience in, say, building a deck…why is it ok for the male to be the one asked to help instead of a blanket offer?  Sure, if I offered to help builded the deck it would be totally fine and ok…but…I have to ask…I have to FIGHT for my opportunity to do it.  And that is exactly why it hurts.

Discrimination- is action that denies social participation or human rights to categories of people based on prejudice.

Prejudice-preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.

My question of why comes. Why is my male counterpart the one that is picked when, we as a society look at the two sex? Why are there such a vast income difference, any difference for that matter, between female and males with the same credentials in the same job? And why do I subscribe to the same gender discriminations?

IT IS NOT OK…IT IS NOT OK…IT IS NOT OK!

I have been so hurt and upset about this (just ask Tim) from people that are not meaning to hurt me.  There have been people that are really kind and carrying and frankly, sweet that I have walked away from feeling discriminated agains because I’m a female.  I’m hurt by their words or actions and want to see our society as a whole change our view point on things.  I have been so upset that giving up seems the only way to move on with a happy life.

…but I have two daughters and a son…I hurt thinking of them going through the things that have hurt me.  So I am going to try and pave a path that might put less limits on them.  I will continue to live and interact in my community that has an equality imbalance.  The only difference I can make is with in my own world view and living by example.  And maybe, just maybe, my children’s world view will be of equality and they will have a limitless full life.

"cousin" Jack and Finnian

“cousin” Jack and Finnian

When Chassé Makes You Cry

1993 Kindergarden-first dance recital

1993 Kindergarden-first dance recital

 

I still remember that first dance recital.  Walking the dark hallway single file behind my class mates towards the stage, the feeling of my stomach clinching as my brain brought everything into slow-motion, and the steady thump of my heart pulsing through my ears.  After the show was over and we had been reunited with our family, I collapse into my step-dad’s arms unable to walk as adrenaline left my body.

Dance became my life for 7 years.  I started out at five with ballet, tap, and tumbling later dabbled in modern dance and finally settled in ballet.  I ended my career on point in six grade after we moved to a small town that didn’t have any advance studios.  Apart of my heart will always be in the dance studios spending hours at the bar excited to start leaping across the room.

Last Tuesday I took the girls to try out a ballet/tap class at a studio close by.

Right before I took this video I burst into big fat crocodile tears as the instructor had them ACTUALLY chassé! They are capable of really learning how to dance with an instructor?!  Heart break came when I learned what it would cost for two kids to be in this class.  I called my mom that night and told her all about the girls and took a stroll down memory lane to my formative years.  After a feeble attempt to talk to Tim about how we could make this happen, I went to bed and dreamt about winning the lottery.

The next day I got a text from my step-dad, “I would like to pay for both girls to join dance.”  Talk about a torrential down pour of tears moment.  The dad who held me after my first recital, who gave me the legacy of the importance to be active in sports, is making sure his grandkids have the same opportunity.  I am so thankful.

Don't Drop Teddy Bear

Don’t Drop Teddy Bear

Go! Seahawks!

Because I was watching old home videos

and…

Because I live 30 minutes without traffic from the stadium

and…

Because the Seahawks just won…

I have to post this video again of my beloved little fan who was only 25 1/2 months at the time of this video.

She is in…I guess we all are now!

Bicycle

Being Seattlights

Being Seattlights

I have been wanting to get the girls balance bikes for a couple years now.  They LOVE bikes.  One of the first songs that they started to sing was Queen’s “Bicycle Race.”  One of their favorite persons just went on a cross country bike tour.  They gravitate toward anyone who has a bike and are always asking to ride them.

The hunt has been on…and we finally, last night, used some of their birthday money and bought some from a friend.

We told them we were going to get a surprise.  I wish I had captured the look on their face when we got to the house to pick them up.  Sheer unrated joy.  After picking up some helmets with their gift cards we got home at 9:30 pm.  Past their bed time but we still had to give their bikes a go (and eat dinner!).

Times like last night are why I love being a parent.  Seeing joy through new fresh eyes.