Grocery Shopping with SpiderMan

How cool is that? You don’t always get to go grocery shopping with SpiderMan. To be honest, I don’t care a lot about grocery shopping, but if Spidy is going then it’s okay.

My son is amazing! I learn so much from him. God has been kind to me by giving me this small, energetic gift. He got a SpiderMan outfit for Christmas last year and has been wearing it consistently ever since. It’s a bit silky, but we won’t talk about that.

Yesterday, we were heading to Bloom, a grocery store. Haydn came to me with his winter boots asking if I’d put them on him. I was glad to serve my son, but was thinking he would want to put on some jeans and a sweatshirt or something like that.

The thought never crossed his mind. He put on his suede boots and off he went, without his mask however.

I stood at different times in Bloom just watching him run around, do this, do that and marveled how it never occurred to him that you don’t wear SpiderMan suits to Bloom. I hope he never morphs into me where he becomes overly concerned about people’s opinion. I do hope as he gets older he won’t be compelled to wear his Spidy outfit in public. …or private for that matter. 

But hopefully life won’t surround and press in on him and he loses his spontaneity and joy. We’re trying to keep the gospel in front of him to stave off the unnecessary encroachments. And God has given grace for that too.

Hot Tamale!

We started out the gardening season on February 14 by planting sugar snap peas in the still cold ground. They do well in cool temps and were soon flourishing. By April we were eating peas to our hearts content along with strawberries. The pepper and tomato plants were started inside when the peas were planted. They didn’t fare so well as seedling because our spring was hot, cold, hot, cold. Once they were in the ground they rebounded nicely and have been providing us with peppers for five months. Today I picked red and orange bell pepper, banana peppers, mini red peppers, orange and red cherry tomatoes and the fourth harvest of purple basil. There is more in the garden!

The basil makes great pesto and freezes well so we will ll be enjoying the garden this winter as well. We mixed our cherry tomatoes with the roma tomatoes and canned 15 quarts of spaghetti sauce. God has given a bountiful harvest and we are grateful.

Making Faces

We have done our first decorating for Fall. The kids have been itch’n to use the “volunteer” pumpkins from the garden. Last fall we had several pumpkins that ended up in the compost pile and this spring we were surprised by dozens of plants from the remains. We kept five or so of the best located sprouts and the kids spent the summer watching the vines grow and counting how many pumpkins developed. Haydn, being the grand leader he is, picked out the largest one, Ansa favored the “babies” , and Tristen claimed the rest! The downside to the pumpkins volunteering to grow in the compost pile was that they matured in mid-August; we weren’t sure they wouldn’t rot before October. We ended up loosing five or six but they are in the compost pile and will hopefully surprise us in the spring.

We gathered around the picnic table with our carving utensils, spoons, and stencils. After cutting a hole in the top the kids scooped out the insides. One benefit from the pumpkins being almost two month old is that the insides weren’t slimy. In fact, several had seeds that had sprouted!

Not being even remotely artistic, it seemed best to have a guide for carving. There is a neat stencil tool at Better Homes and Garden. While Rick finished the carving, I took the seeds, rinsed them, and put them in a pan with olive oil and sea salt. After they started “popping” and looked crisp I cooled them on a paper towel. The kids enjoyed their first fried pumpkin seeds and I was thrilled to be sharing a memory from my childhood.

Airport Fellowship

Atlanta was fogged in. We left the hotel in St. Louis around 5:30PM on Wednesday and drove onto our driveway around 3:30AM on Thursday morning. The extended stay in various airports (St. Louis, Atlanta & Charlotte) created a wonderful opportunity to meet some folks, chat and generally enjoy one another.

We were fogged in on Thursday. 

We’re good now.

It’s all on the 25th Floor

We are in St. Louis attending a counseling conference. It is late and we’ve just finished a long day. We’re in the elevator heading to our room. There was a guy, who was a bit “tight” after an evening of alcohol consumption, also on the elevator. I don’t think he was at our conference. He was a nice drunk, very accommodating. He was polite and conversant, very conversant. 

He told a couple, who happen to be at the conference and just stepped onto the elevator, that if they were interested in some alcoholic beverages they could find them on the 25th floor. And, he continued, if they wanted to do some evangelistic work they could also find that on the 25th floor as well.

It struck me as humorous as well as insightful.

Rick & Lucia Joined the Marines!

Today was the community day for the new hospital, which is nearly in our backdoor. We have been watching the progress of the Village Hospital for two years now. My kids have been counting down the days.

Today was the day for the community to come for tours, prizes and various check-ups. It was most certainly an impressive hospital. 

On a whim last week I signed Lucia and myself up for a free session that Maxmotivation was offering at the community day. I happen to know the owner of this company (Derrick Singleton, former Marine!!) and thought it would be good to support my friend as well as get some free exercise and training.

Man, am I sore. 

It was good, maximum and motivating. Derrick invited me to come join him for additional training at his 5:15 AM upcoming training sessions. I’m halting between two opinions: sleep and a need for exercise. His course is twice a week for six weeks. That’s Phase One. He has three phases.

I’ve been following Derrick’s passion/vocation for a few years now. You may want to checkout his site. You can find it here: Go To Boot Camp

Camp Thomas

The beach was perfect! The weather was perfect. The waves were perfect. The time was refreshing. Hilton Head is a great vacation spot for families. Yesterday after we broke “beach camp” mommy dropped us off at a playground so the kids could run off some energy before we came back to the condo. 

There was a small playground close by. We spent some time there and then I asked the kids if they wanted to go adventuring. That got a resounding response. Ansa said she wanted to hold me, which meant I’m to pick her up and she latches onto my neck. She held me and off we four went.

We hovered around one tennis court, two ponds and two swimming pools before we made it back to the condo. I say “hovered” because there are many alligators around the ponds and a sign at each one that says not to harass them. No problem there.

However, at the second pond we did get to see a six foot gater sunning on the bank. That was a special moment. It was a rare moment in that the kids were nipping at my heels, hovering.

Happy 5th Birthday, Haydn!

You bring your parents much joy! I had a great time teaching you how to ride the waves this past week. You are courageous and approach life with much undaunted zeal. I hope you never change.

You are sweet, sensitive, loving and obedient. You are a super-good servant and your leadership skills are growing by the day. Thanks for bringing glory to God!

You are my adventure!!

Hilton Head Island Cornhole Champion!!

Some will not believe this, but every word is true. I am now the official Hilton Head Island Cornhole Champion. I won the cornhole tournament today, working through the brackets to the grand prize. I think most of you know what cornhole is. If not, you can check out the Rhett and Link Cornhole Video on YouTube. Just click on Rhett and Link and it’ll take you there.

The Egret Center did not have the official cornhole set. They had what is called the “Corn Toss Game.” It’s the same thing, but they used a plastic type board instead of the cornhole plywood board. This was so they could patent it and start their own brand. It’s the same game, just a different kind of board. It was actually more difficult in that the board was plastic. The bags slid more, which meant a tactical and mechanical adjustment on my part. You had to aim at the lower end of the board because the bags would slide further up the board and potentially off the board if you landed the bag up near the hole. Also if you went for a “swisher” you had to nail it or the bag would inevitably slide off the board and you know what that means. No points for you!!

Well, enough of that.

The weather was scorching and I’m not sure why they set the boards out in the sunshine. It made winning all the more special. 

Who played? Well Lucia suggested I let you know. 

No one really showed up. Only Lucia, Tristen, Haydn, Ansa and my 85-year old father-in-law. Tristen, Haydn and Ansa didn’t want to play. I whooped Lucia pretty good. And then went on to beat my father-in-law in a nip and tuck match to the very end. I prevailed and won a HHI coozie. I actually won twice, but gave one of the prizes to my father-in-law.

I’m still a bit perplexed as to why no one showed up but us.

For those of you who would like your own set and you live locally, I may be able to hook you up with the whole shoot’in match for $35. That’s two cornhole boards and eight bean bags, which are really corn bags. No promises, but I will try.