Friday, June 30, 2006

Figuring It Out

My dear husband
Originally uploaded by Beth.
David has not yet become addicted to the world of blogging. 24—yes! . . . but blogging, honestly he thinks we (you know who you are) all just need to get a life.

That is therefore the precise reason why I can feel complete freedom to post the following without fear of repercussions on his xanga site. It will most likely be a month or so before he posts again . . . so here it is.

Question of the Day:

If you send your husband to the store with specific instructions to buy “a really good brand of taco sauce,” and he comes home with a bottle of Taco Bell taco sauce, do you . . .

A. Assume he actually likes Taco Bell taco sauce over all the really great brands you can choose from?
B. Assume he doesn’t really like taco sauce and thought he could save a few pennies?
C. Assume he has no taste whatsoever?
D. Assume that he just figured out a really good way to never get sent to the store again?

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Movin' To The Grovin'

Little Maestro
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Cole was banging away happily on the piano when he called out,

“Dance Mom—I’m playing a song!”

My response was my usual one to such requests these days,

“Mommy’s too pregnant to dance, Cole.”

He then appealed to his dad,

“Dance Dad—I’m playing a song!”

David of course jumped right in and danced away. (Sorry, couldn’t get to the camera quite fast enough.)

You gotta love a dad who never disappoints!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Basket Case

Ready for Bible School
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Everyone knows pregnant women are emotional . . . I’m way off the charts.

We decided to join our Smith cousins for another week of Bible School at their church. When I took Ashley and Jonathan inside to register, I felt like I was pushing them forward. They can get really shy when they don’t know anyone, and both of them were being quite reluctant.

I sent Ashley over to the table for her age group and then took Jonathan to his. After signing him up we saw his cousin, Jon Michael, waving wildly to us, jumping up and down, and frantically trying to get our attention. Suddenly Jonathan’s shyness melted away. He ran to join Jon Michael and the seven year old class.

It was then that I looked over toward Ashley and realized she had huge tears running down her face. She didn’t know anyone in her class and was totally freaking out.

While simultaneously trying to console her and convince her she would love her class, I felt tears welling up in my own eyes. Was I flashing back to her first day of kindergarten? Was the 100 degree heat simply more than I could bear at that moment? I am clueless as to why I was crying! The little fourteen old helper was clueless as to what to do with us as well.

Someone looking in from the outside might have concluded I had had a fight with my husband on the way there, or possibly had just lost someone close to me to cancer . . . on the contrary, I had just had some pretty good news. David was planning on leaving town for a week to go to Creation Fest in Pennsylvania, and we had just moments ago received word that it had been canceled due to the floods there. (Let me clarify by saying, I am in no way rejoicing over this major upset in which tons of ministry, man-hours, and money will be lost. I’m just simply saying, that in my little world, I’m quite glad my husband won’t be leaving for a week.)

The problem was solved when the teacher from the older class let Ashley join them—she was now with her twin cousins, Tori and Haley. All was well once again.

David and Cole were waiting for me in the van. I went out and told David what a ridiculous idiot I had made of myself. David just laughed. Is it bad when you make a complete dimwit of yourself, your husband considers it just your normal behavior?

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Brotherly Love

My sweet boys
Originally uploaded by Beth.
I knew this day would one day come . . . I just didn’t think it would come quite so soon. I was working in the kitchen when I heard a muffled, “Mom, help.” It was Jonathan. He was lying on the living room floor covered in a blanket. Cole was sitting on his head with a huge grin—he wouldn’t get off.

My seven year old pacifist will let his little brother get away with anything. He never fights back and usually just laughs at the things Cole does. Cole of course thinks Jonathan is the most wonderful person in the world! He wants to be just like him. The only difference between them is Jonathan has always been the sweet, loving, and tenderhearted type. Though I see these traits in Cole, Cole also has a high need for action, roughness, speed and daring. Wrestling someone to the floor who is bigger than him is his idea of a great time.

I couldn’t have asked for a better big brother for Cole than Jonathan. He is patient with him and takes the time to teach him all the things he learns. He loves to read to him and will always play games with him—even when Cole is too young to really know how to play. A frequent question of Cole’s is, “Mom, when will I grow up to be a Jonathan?” I guess I couldn’t say it any better than that.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Oh The Things We Teach Our Kids

Jonathan and His Dad
Originally uploaded by Beth.
When David was a kid he accidentally knocked a baseball through his neighbor’s window. His parents sent him over to apologize and offer to pay for it. The owner of the window was Mr. Andes of the famed Andes Candies. After the apology, Mr. Andes patted David on the head and said all was well. He then gave him a big box of Andes Candies.

My kids have heard that story a thousand times. David always ends the story with: “ . . . and after that I always aimed for that particular window when hitting baseballs.” Oh the things we teach our kids.

I was watching the news the other day and learned that Al Gore is thinking of running for president in ‘08—his campaign slogan will be “Re-elect Al Gore.” As part of the 31% that still love President Bush, we think this would be just a sad attempt at appealing to the Bush haters.

Nonetheless it reminded me of how David taught Jonathan to name many of our country's leaders by the time he was two. Right after the election between Bush and Gore, when asked the question, “Who is Al Gore?” Instead of his old, “Vice President of the United States,” he would reply, “He is a loser!” Though this response always got quite a few chuckles when he said it, I never felt quite right about teaching our kids to dog someone who had served our country in such an honored position. Oh the things we teach our kids!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Little Man

Originally uploaded by Beth.
Sunday night Cole was in his pajamas hanging out in the Living Room with David. He put on his tie from church and donned his Sunday shoes. He walked over to David, held out his hand and said, “Dad, I’m a man. Let’s shake hands.”

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Comedians

Originally uploaded by Beth.
The other day we were driving in the van when Ashley decided to tell us all a joke. It went like this:

Teacher: A whale’s throat is too small to swallow a human.
Student: That’s not true because my Sunday School teacher said, “Jonah got swallowed by a whale.”
Teacher: How do you know that’s true?
Student: I don’t. I’ll ask him when I get to heaven.
Teacher: What if he’s not in heaven?
Student: Then you can ask him.

Jonathan was not to be outdone. He too shared a joke:

Q: Why did the bubble gum cross the road?
A: Because it was stuck to the chicken.

Cole then decided he too needed to get in on the action.

Cole: Knock, knock.
Us: Who’s there?
Cole: Orange
Us: Orange who?
Cole: Uh, um . . . fruit.

Okay, he’s three!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

If At First You Don't Succeed . . .

Cole and Chuckie
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Cole’s absolutely favorite place to go is Chuckie Cheese’s. He is always looking for a new angle on how to get there. Yesterday we had the following interaction . . .

Cole: “My cat can talk to me.”

Me: “What does your cat say?”

Cole: “He wants to go to Chuckie Cheese.”

Me: “All by himself?”

Cole: “No, Mom! He wants you and me to go with him!”

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Sweet Devotion

Snowball and Ashley (Age 10)
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Ashley has always loved cats. Since David is allergic to cats, he sacrificially indulges this passion. She received her first kitten on her fourth birthday—now at age ten I’ve lost track of how many cats and kittens have at one time or another inhabited our abode.

Once in a terrible thunder storm I couldn’t find Ashley anywhere in the house. I assumed there was no way she could actually be outside given her hugely irrational fear of thunder. But after I couldn’t locate her anywhere, I went outside.

I finally found her. She was frantically looking for a stray kitten someone had dropped off at our house just a couple of days earlier. I forced her to come back inside even though her search for Belle had been in vain. What an amazing display of devotion—she put her own fear of the thunder aside because of her love and concern for her precious little stray kitten.

As it turned out the kitten of course was fine—she found a safe place to ride out the storm. For Ashley though, it was a rough night. She worried for the little kitten’s safety until she found her in the morning.

My sweet little Ashley—growing up so fast. May you always have such a tender and loving heart!

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Entertainer

"The Colie Dance"
Originally uploaded by Beth.
This past week was Vacation Bible School at our church. Each night during the singing Cole went up on stage to “help”. For some reason he would get extremely excited and start doing his own little dance. Then without warning he would drop into a position with both hands on the floor and one leg in the air. This of course caused all the other kids and teachers to erupt into spontaneous laughter.

We don’t know what causes our child to do these things. Though we too think he is cute, we have tried to reign in this inappropriate behavior.

Before the Sunday morning service, we had a lengthy talk with Cole about refraining from doing what we have come to affectionately call “The Colie Dance”. We told him to stand nicely with the other kids and simply sing.

I guess our words fell on deaf ears. Not only did Cole dance and entertain the crowd, there is now a new buzz at church. Everyone is doing “The Colie Dance”. When the girls beat the boys in the final offering count, the director decided all the boys would have to do “The Colie Dance” in order to get ice cream.

In the parking lot after church, the teenagers were trying it out as well. Seems Cole has started a fad. Even the teachers got in on it.

Sometimes in life you wonder where in the world kids learn the things they do. We haven’t a clue about this one. Does anyone have any insight?

Saturday, June 17, 2006


Happy Birthday David!
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Surprises are always fun. Thirty-eight years ago today David surprised everyone—he was baby number two. His parents had no idea they were having twins!

It kind of fits David’s personality to arrive into the world with such a bang. He tends to make everything fun.

I can remember having the thought in high school that I definitely wanted to marry someone who makes the world laugh. Though I added probably somewhat more significant and meaningful traits to my list along the way . . . a knock you off your chair, never a dull moment humor is certainly one of the many wonderful characteristics defining this man I married.

I could tell a million stories of the ways in which David brings laughter to the world. He isn’t just the life of the party . . . the party doesn’t really start until he gets there.

I’ve watched in amazement as David creatively uses this gift to bless others. In one moment it’s a witty comment to ease tensions in a room full of stress. In another it’s by using a perfect balance of wisdom and humor to diffuse someone’s anger. The one I love most is how he can say just the right thing, to even a complete stranger, to make their otherwise dull or difficult day a much better place to be.

If you know David, I don’t have to tell you what a tremendous and wonderful person he is. Just as David was a surprise gift to his parents so many years ago, he is today and everyday an ongoing gift to all of us.

Happy Birthday, Honey! I’ve immensely enjoyed these past twelve years of laughing by your side!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Extravagant Daddy

David and the kids
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Yesterday we were standing in the check out line at Wal-mart when Ashley asked what we were going to do for the rest of the day. David answered with, “I’m going to the movies.”

Three little heads snapped to attention. “What movie, Dad?”

In a slow, nonchalant way David replied, “I thought I’d go see . . . CARS.”

Three kids burst into happy squeals and smiles. David then added, “I didn’t say I was taking anybody with me.” They of course knew better than to believe him on that one. “Yeah, right!” was the triplicate, in unison response.

As we walked out of Wal-mart David received three different smiles of approval from nearby mothers who had overheard the exchange. David tends to do everything with a touch of extravagance.

I love it that David does spontaneous things like that for his kids. I love it even more that he doesn’t make me come along on such excursions.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Little Britches

The Half-Clad Streaker
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Using the potty is still fairly new for Cole. It is consequently quite common to see him walk through the house with just a shirt on. His shorts and unders are usually found somewhere near one of our four bathrooms. Thus it is not unusual to have an interaction like the one I just had.

Me: “Cole, where are your britches?”

Cole: “I can’t find them. I keep losting them.”

He then goes on with whatever he is doing—at this particular moment it is eating a banana. The unders and shorts will only be retrieved and properly attired on his body when I actually go and do it myself. Can any one tell me how long this stage will last?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

We're Under Siege

More pets!
Originally uploaded by Beth.
I’m not so good with pets. I’ve never really found the amount of work they require worth the return. Not so for my kids. They love animals. We indulge their love because when we don’t we fear we’re depriving them of a happy childhood. Thus we have a dog, a cat, and two empty fish bowls. (Don’t ask. It was a very sad day when Mommy accidentally sent them to fish heaven.)

Last week Grammy Hasz added another kitten to our brood. Ashley likes to wrap her up in a baby blanket and carry her around like a doll. Duchess doesn’t seem to mind even though we’re enduring typical Texas temperatures over 100 degrees.

As if this were not enough, David took the kids yesterday to pick out more fish. We now have seven fish residing in the big, lovely fish aquarium my dad decided we needed. I informed everyone I was not in any way contributing to the well-being (or lack thereof) of the fish.

But alas it doesn’t end there! Today David and I returned from a trip to the doctor’s office only to be greeted at the car with three very excited kids holding four new kittens. Jonathan found them in a hole under our new deck. Ashley has been talking about Princess having kittens for quite some time. David and I kept telling her that it was not possible. What do we know about these things? We asked her what had given her the idea other than her undying optimism for such things. She replied, “Because she had those little nibble things on her.”

Let’s hope our kids are living that happy childhood . . . the pets around here are starting to take over!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

The Giver

Little Artist
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Yesterday Cole came into my office and said, “Maisy won’t come out of the TV.”

Me: “Honey, people don’t come out of the TV.”

He held up and picture he had just made and said, “But I made a picture for her.”

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Not So Ready

My Helpers
Originally uploaded by Beth.
This pregnancy is quite different than all my other ones. Usually by month five I have the baby’s room ready to go and our suitcases packed for the hospital. I like to be way out in front when it comes to being prepared.

This time around I’m down to weeks and I still have a long way to go. It kind of wearies me to think about it. Maybe it has something to do with my doctor calling the other day and telling me to start taking iron—my last blood test read that I am anemic.

I have now been taking the iron for several days, and am happy to report I have the curtain rods up, the paint finished, and the bedding and accessories ordered.

Yesterday David was debating whether or not to go cut down more trees out of the front yard. At 100 degrees and holding, it was not something I thought he should be doing. I suggested we work on the baby’s room (Meaning I sit in the rocker and tell everyone else what needs to be done). He then decided those trees couldn’t wait any longer.

It’s okay. As the nursery comes together we are simultaneously taking down loads and loads of trees and putting a deck up. Our three acres of forest is actually taking on the simulation of a yard. I have picked out a really great jungle gym for the kids . . . just waiting to have a nice big open patch of grass to build it in.

Until then, we continue to prepare for this baby’s arrival. Now, if only we could agree on a name . . .

Friday, June 09, 2006

Such A Darling Bear

The Cookie Lover
Originally uploaded by Beth.
Ashley has been honing her skills in the kitchen. The other night she made chocolate chip cookies and asked if she could put them in a cookie jar I had stashed away. I had forgotten I even had the little guy—a ceramic teddy bear dressed in an old fashion suit.

The new addition to our kitchen counter was quite the attraction for Cole. Several times during the day Cole could be found gazing up at the bear with delight in his eyes.

Later that evening we were in the living room when we heard a loud crash followed by loud crying. David and I ran to kitchen immediately realizing what had happened. Cole had climbed up to help himself to a cookie.

We were quite fearful about the level of injury because his cries were so loud. I picked him up and asked if the lid had fallen on his head. “Sob, sob, sob . . . NO.” He could hardly talk he was crying so hard.

“Did the loud crash scare you?” “Sob, sob, sniffle, catch his breath . . . NO!” “Does it hurt anywhere?” “Sob, sob . . . NO!”

By this time I was starting to realize the loud event of the bear’s head shattering on the ceramic tile had simply scared him—or possibly he knew he had just been caught sneaking a cookie without asking. None the less I continued my questioning, “Cole, why are you crying?” “Sob, sob . . . Because he was such a darling bear. He had such a cute little nose!”

Thursday, June 08, 2006

"Music" To Mine Ears

The Musicians
Originally uploaded by Beth.
There are new sounds in the Hasz household—we’ve begun violin lessons! Truly it is amazing the sacrifices parents will make for their children.

Listening to kids struggle to learn a new instrument can be rough. Yet with every little new sound they produce they are so proud of themselves. I am daily honing my encouragement and affirmation skills.

Because Cole is not allowed to touch his siblings’ violins, I told him we would get one for him at Walmart. This was very exciting for Cole. Unfortunately, when we got to Walmart, we learned they do not sell play violins.

Picking up a small guitar I said, “Cole, do you like this violin?” “Mom, that’s not a violin, that’s a guitar.” How does a three year old know these things?!!

He declined the guitar and instead wanted the “yellow horn.” I was perfectly okay with putting the $16 guitar back and getting the $ .88 recorder. Unfortunately, the $ .88 recorder did not come with a silencer . . . so here I am. Can anyone tell me out there if this will someday pay off? Did little Johann Sebastian drive his mother crazy?

Thursday, June 01, 2006

The Observant One

Ashley and her "Pumpkin Pie"
Originally uploaded by Beth.
I’ve been organizing all my old pictures and Cole has been “helping.” He picked up this one of Ashley in kindergarten and said, “Mommy, Ashley has a pumpkin pie!”

David and I smiled at his mistake. He then walked over to me and patted my stomach, “Mommy, you have a pumpkin pie in your tummy!”

SPECIAL NOTE: As a follow up to “The Name Dilemma”, thanks to everyone who contributed. We now have a running list of those we are considering. You can click on “Potential Names” to view this list as well as continue to give your suggestions.