Monday, May 30, 2016

A Post for Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day, a day in which we honor those who have died while serving in our country's armed forces. I have a lot of respect for anyone who sacrifices and signs up for military service, well-aware of the danger that is involved. My grandpa served in the Army in World War II and was wounded when a bomb exploded just a few feet from him. Thank goodness he survived!

My sister Annette recently got out a document that our grandpa typed up of his experience in the war. I want to share a small portion of what he said about what he learned in the Army:

"To summarize my Army experience, I would have to say that I learned a great deal about life and myself. Basic Training was a challenging experience from the physical standpoint and learning how to survive against an enemy that was there to kill you was a way of life that I had not even thought about before. Being in combat against that enemy was very realistic and I am glad that they prepared us well, even though at times we thought the instructors were unreasonable. One does not know what lies ahead and especially so in our younger years. Thank goodness the older and experienced men knew what we needed to learn. The camaraderie that one learns is also a valuable lesson in trust and dependency upon others to achieve a desired goal. Living through and recovering from a very traumatic experience helps one realize that life is precious and I am thankful for each of the wonderful days I have lived since. My advice from all of this is to count your blessings and live each day as if it's your last."  – Warren Zimmerman
The vertical pictures are of Grandpa in his Army uniform. The black and white pic is from "back in the day" and the other picture was taken 50 years later…and the uniform still fit! That is an accomplishment! The lower left picture is of Grandpa and my grandma, Helen, and the picture up top is of Grandpa and me earlier this year on Grandpa's 94th birthday.

Grandpa has quite a legacy. He and Grandma have been married for 66 years, have four children, 15 grandchildren, and 30 great-grandchildrensoon to be 31and counting… 

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Mother's Day 2016

We had a wonderful Mother's Day this year. We heard great messages at church, and the women had an awesome lesson about motherhood/womanhood, complete with a beautiful spread of food (pastries, cookies, cheeses and crackers, fresh fruits and vegetables, chocolates, M&M, etc.).

Chandra, Joe and Christian came over for dinner that evening. Chandra made lasagna, and it was delicious! Her lasagna is honestly the best I've ever tasted. My mom made a salad and a lemon pound cake for dessert. I'm not a huge lemon fanI'm a chocolate cake girl all the waybut the lemon cake was actually really good!

My sisters and I went in on a couple of gifts for our mom: a digital kitchen scale and a book Mom had said she wanted. I ordered the gifts, had them shipped to Chandra, and Chandra wrapped them and made a card. (I love the pretty wrapping paper Chan usedso colorful and happy!) It would've been great if my other sisters have been able to be here for Mother's Day, but they live too far away to come over for dinner.
She loved her gifts and seemed surprised. Chandra also made this for Mom to hang up. Mom definitely is a caring, loving grandmother!
Chandra took off Christian's shirt and tie during dinner, so he didn't get his mashed up hard-boiled egg yolks on his shirt. I was disappointed that this picture of Christian was out of focus, because he was looking so cute! The next picture of him back in his shirt/tie turned out nice and clear, though. He looks so cute sitting on Grammy's lap. :)
I had Joe take a picture of my mom, Chandra and me. Christian had to be in the picture, too, since this was Chandra's first Mother's Day since having him. [The lighting fixture over the kitchen table always makes for terrible lighting in pictures, with or without a flash!]
Chandra is such a great mom to Christian. They are lucky to have each other!
And finally, a couple pictures with Joe, too.
In other Mother's Day news, I found out that my sister Annette is going to have another baby this October. I always love getting another niece/nephew. This makes 25!

Monday, May 9, 2016

Christian: Eight Months Old

Christian hit the eight-month mark this past Saturday. It is such a joy to watch him change and grow! As you can see, Christian's hair is growing, especially on the top of his head and on each side. It's still pretty sparse in some spots, but it's growing.
 Giving standing a try:
 Christian got his first two teeth this past month:
He loves to suck and chew on his fingers:
Christian loves to rummage through his mom's bag. That keeps him entertained for a long time, and he prefers to do that over playing with toys. Christian loves to push/pull things, like my over-the-bed table that he is sitting under in the pictures below (he also loves to open/shut drawers in the kitchen and bathroom). He loves to go through the Tupperware cabinet, too, as you can see in the second set of pictures below.
He's been getting up on all fours and he rocks back and forth. He's able to get around the room by scooting around on his stomach, even though he isn't crawling yet. Somehow he only manages to go backward, instead forward, though! And just last night he was grabbing onto the leg of the table and was trying to pull himself up to a stand. He didn't quite get to his feet, but he was close. I'm sure he'll be standing in a month or two.
Christian liked using this teether, since he was getting his first teeth. It looks like a popsicle, but you unscrew the handle, and you can put ice cubes in the mesh bag, which the baby can then suck/chew on. More bath pictures under that. Christian LOVES baths.
Chandra went shopping with one of her friends, and Chan carried Christian in the wrap she made. I imagine Christian is around 25 pounds, so she definitely got a workout! The picture below on the right makes me laugh. One of Chandra's friend's mothers loves to shop at thrift stores, and she bought this "vintage boys outfit" as she called it for Christian. Chandra tried the outfit on Christian, and she and her friend got a good laugh out of seeing Christian in this rather feminine-looking outfit. 
Above: new dino jammies. Below: looking like a pretty cool dude in these shades.
Something else Christian does that makes me laugh, is to sit on the floor (as pictured above) and he bangs one of his heels into the floor over and over. I'm not sure why he likes doing this, but he's been doing it for the past couple of months.
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