Friday, May 14, 2010

The (Not So) Little Drummer Boy

Nathan is one of those human beings who has rhythm running continuously through his veins. If he stands still for very long, pretty soon he feels compelled to start up a beat using his chest and stomach as substitute drum heads. And at the dinner table, he has been known to bounce up and down in a rhythmic manner even while shoveling grub into his mouth.

And last night at our family birthday for dinner for Steve? I took several pictures in a row of Nathan’s fingers tapping on the table, playing a beat that only he could hear.






He really doesn’t even know he’s doing all these things. The only time he becomes aware of of his actions is if an unnamed person (um, maybe someone whose first name is Becky and last name is Smith) says something like, “Nathan, please stop banging. It’s not very restful.”

He immediately looks sheepish and with an obviously great and concerted effort manages to get all his appendages to be at rest.

For about two minutes.

And then, without him even being aware of it, that ol’ rhythm sneaks back through his arms, legs and fingers and away he goes again. Bobbing, tapping, swaying. And I just sigh and smile to myself and thank the Lord for such a musical child who loves drums and rhythm that much.

Because honestly? I am amazed by anyone who can play the drums. I sat down at the drum set a few months ago when Nathan was home and tried to show me how to play the “simplest beat possible.”

The result? My slap-dashery efforts caused Nathan to be seized by a fit of great merriment to the extent where he just barely stopped himself from rolling on the floor in hysterical laughter.

So he didn’t get his rhythm from his mother. That is a scientifically proven fact.

But I don’t really need a propensity for rhythm; I only need a propensity for enduring the rhythmic bangings that Nathan always brings to the table with him. However, it is a very small price to pay for having him at home. When he goes back to Florida, I’m sure I’ll sit at the dinner table with Steve and Sarah and pine for the days when Nathan’s rhythm shook the dinner plates.

And how do the other members of the family respond to Nathan’s remarkably rhythmic restlessness?

You can see that it really upsets Sarah. A lot.


Or not.


And one other Nathan fact before I close. Now that he’s been away at college for three years, you might be wondering if he managed to retain the good table manners I tried to instill in him for eighteen years—manners like never eating a dessert directly from its container.


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Oh well.

I guess I’ll let that particular bit of manner-mangling go. Along with the drumming. And the tapping. And the loud exuberance that is Nathan.

Because you know what? I just love having him home.

(P.S. Nathan just got his grades from the last semester of his Junior Year and made all A’s. He obviously gets his rhythmic skills from his dad and his powerful intellect from his mom.)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

He’s Forty-Seven Years Away from A Hundred

Or maybe it would sound better just to say, “Steve is fifty-three.”

At any rate, Steve’s birthday is today, which is why I’ve been away from the computer so much. I am happy to report that today is my second day since surgery when I have not had to lie down for a mid-day nap. Instead, I went and got my hair cut and then spent a couple hours meandering in and out of stores looking for gifts for Steve. I cooked him dinner and then he opened gifts and we had his birthday cake.

Actually, it wasn’t a home made cake because I’m making that cake for a party we’re having tomorrow night with a few people invited. Tonight I just had a store bought cake; however, I was especially excited because the particular store I went in just happened to carry a kind of cake I hardly ever see--tiramisu!

Steve loves tiramisu and I have never been successful at making it so I was quite delighted to see some just waiting for me to come in and snatch it up.


Before the cake was brought in, Steve had to don The Hat.


And then he clapped his hands along to enhance the merriment of the moment.


Here is a fine example of Sarah’s gift wrapping; instead of curling ribbon, she used curled wrapping paper and made a bow out of it!


I bought the car wrapping paper at a thrift store several months ago and have saved it all this time, just for Steve’s birthday.


It was so nice that Nathan got to be home for Steve’s actual birthday; that made it extra special. The two guys just left to see a movie together; Sarah and I will stay home and read and ponder life. And think profound thoughts. And, um, eat chocolate. And also go to bed early to make up for my nap-less day.

In closing, here are a few favorite pictures of my favorite man in the entire world. When I say that Steve is a wonderful husband, I mean that in every sense of the word. I don’t know of many women on this planet who are treated as well as I am—I’m pretty well spoiled. And I’m pretty well happy about that!

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With Nathan.


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In college. Kind of rowdy looking, wasn’t he? He didn’t look much different than

this when I first met him. (As a sheltered, 17-year old preacher’s daughter.)


Less rowdy looking. Steve loved the Scouts earned his Eagle Scout award at age 13.


Not sure what year this was—I think college somewhere. I really dig the turquoise jewelry.


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Jan. 2, 1982. I’m so thankful that I was the lucky lady who became Mrs. Steve Smith


Happy birthday, honey!


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

10 PM

At a little after 10 pm last night, my oldest chick arrived back in the nest, as illustrated by this car in the Smith driveway.


This morning I went out and glanced into his car and was so pleased to see that he had practiced good, healthy eating habits on the 13-hour journey from Florida to North Carolina.


For lunch today, I fixed him a small repast for which he seemed very grateful. I guess anything would be tasty after thirteen hours of potato chips and Dollar Menu  selections at McDonalds. 


Unfortunately, he arrived home rather sick, with a horrible cough.   Steve brought out a whole array of cough medicines, decongestants, antihistames and of course, the old standby, Vicks VapoRub.   He then proceeded to rub Vicks into Nathan’s back and chest and then, as the grand finale’, also put some on his neck before pinning a white sock into place around said neck.  Sorry, I didn’t get a picture. 

Poor Nathan.  He came home anticipating a quiet, low key welcome and was suddenly set upon by maniacal parents and a boatload of new- and old-fashioned remedies.

After about an hour the cough meds kicked in and he slept pretty quietly.  However, today the cough was even worse so I took him to the doctor and then to the pharmacy with prescriptions.  Ah.  Nothing like getting to be a mom to my College Dude.

Nathan is now happily ensconced downstairs with computer and TV nearby.    It’s a rough life.

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