Friday, June 17, 2011

Balloons to Heaven

Today was David's Birthday. He would have been 42. We have always tried to make his birthday a celebration and day of memory. It seems to be the best choice. Father's Day may someday be lost to someone else, Memorial Day is inherently somber, and the anniversary of the death is not a happy occasion either.

Since birthdays are automatically cheerful for the most part...that is the day we have chosen to celebrate and remember.

We started talking about it earlier this week. The kids decided what kind of cake they would have. Their dad was a big Broncos fan, and that was what they choose. I enlisted the help of a talented friend who created a wonderful cake for us (see below).

It wasn't a long drawn out festivity. We kept it simple. It included 2 things really. The first was the balloons. I bought 10 helium filled balloons, 2 for each of us, one blue and one orange. And sharpie markers. I invited each child to write a message on their balloons. A message to their dad. And then we released them to travel to heaven for him on his birthday.

My boys messages were simple; "I love you.", "I miss you." "Happy Birthday."

Ashlyn and Maryn wrote short essays. But it is the way they are.


Maryn's says. "Happy Birthday Daddy your 42!" Everyone misses you! I Love you!"




Theyw ere smiling and cheerful as they wrote. And here is Ashlyns. She had a hard time letting this balloon go. She was afraid the birds would pop it before it got to heaven for her dad. She made me take several pictures of it.



"Daddy when will you come back will I ever see you Again?"


I stood by her and assured her it was okay to let it go. Letting it go was the only way it would get to him.



We watched as they floated out of sight.
"Mommy? Is heaven above the clouds?"
"Are there clouds in Heaven?"
"What does Heaven look like?"


Since we believe as a family that David is being a missionary in the world after this one to those who have not heard of Jesus Christ , Maryn wanted to know if Daddy was teaching Michael Jackson :)


A few hours later, Ashlyn asked me if I thought Daddy had gotten the balloons yet and if he was reading his messages. I told her I thought it was so.



The next part was the cake.

We put a one candle on the cake. We would light it, and each person would take a turn making a wish for themselves they thought daddy would make for them before blowing out the candle. They were instructed not to tell. Although Conner and Ashlyn confessed to wishing for their daddy to come back, and we had to discuss why this was not possible right now. Paul assured them that he would come back, and they would see him again, but when the Lord came again. They insisted on knowing when that would be.

But of course, no one knows. And something that vague is kind of hard to explain to ones so young. But we tried to.


I feel sure David is proud of them; of who they are and who they are becoming. He is proud of what they are accomplishing and the choices they are making.
And I think that is most likely, the best birthday gift they can give him.


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Monday, June 13, 2011

Ashlynisms...


#1
Rob and I: We'll give $10 to whoever can lick their elbow! (All of the children begin desperately trying to do so).
Ashlyn: I can't lick my elbow. But I can lick my armpit!


#2
I gave Ashlyn some pants. I watched her put them on, turned around to grab something and when I turned back they were off her and on the floor.

Me: "Whats wrong with these?"
Ashlyn: "They don't fit right."
Me: "Well are you going to wear them ever or should I give them away."
Ashlyn: "Nah. Keep em'. I'll probably wear them when my butt gets bigger."
(I start laughing hysterically)
Ashlyn: "You're gonna put that on facebook aren't you."

Cincinnati Adventures: Wherein Tamra and I discover that the talent of ballon artist is measured in how long you can wait to use the bathroom

On Saturday we went across the river to Kentucky and Newport. There's a lot to see. There are shops and restaurants and street performers. Oh, and Cold Stone. Yummy.

But I digress.

Street performers.

This guy was super nice and gave the kids some free balloons. We left a tip. On the way across the Purple People Bridge to Ohio, Ashlyn and Miciah's both popped. So we stopped back on the way out and asked for another. He gladly obliged. While we waited for Rob and the kids wathced a juggler, Tamra and began wondering exactly hwo the stilts and the bathroom things worked.
So Tamra asked.
Apparently, he stand there for 10 hours without taking off the stilts or taking a break. Not even a bathroom break.
Talk about training.
It was hot. So Rob gave both the ballon man and the juggler a water bottle as a tip. They both seemed to appreciate it very much
The girls and their balloons. Tank had no desire to be in the picture.
These awesome little dudes are hermit crabs with cool painted shells. They were sweet!



So we walked across the river on the bridge. Which I failed to take pictures of. Walked around the riverfront park. Ate a picnic. Walked down to the water. Walked back over the bridge and watched a barge pass right under our feet.

And went home wiped out.

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Cincinnati Adventures: The part in which we discover that there are leaves bigger then Rob and curlier then Q's

So after the sauna...er, I mean, the butterfly house, we went on and explored the remainder of the conservatory. We discovered some very interesting plants I found neat to look at and quickly enjoy without much thought.

Robert felt the need to explain the biological individuality and evolutionary genius of each species.
Yea.
Here's the dumbed down, non PhD in something biology related version.
Okay its honestly more of the 1st grade reader version.

See Rob. See the big leaves.


Look children. There are plants near the pond.

The ugly big goldfish swim in the stream. Where will they go?

The leaves are up. Up, up, up!

Some of the leaves are big and wide. Some of the leaves are not big and wide. Some are big and not wide.

Look! Look at the girl by the water. The water is falling over the rocks into the stream that goes nowhere where the ugly big goldfish swim.

The water falls. Splish! Splash! Do not get wet!

Look! Look children and Rob. Look at the path we have walked through the forest that is not real.

The girls sits on the butterfly. The butterfly does not die. The butterfly is not a real butterfly!
Silly girl.

See Rob! See the silly leaves! Why are the leaves so silly?


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Cincinnati Adventure: The Part Where we sweat it out in the Butterfly House

The following events will be retold in detail...but not necessarily in the order that they happened. They are actually appearing in the order of what I thought were the coolest pictures.
So there.

So over Memorial Day weekend my mother kicked me and girls out of the house so she could have grandson's weekend. So I took Maryn and Ashlyn down to my brother's house in Cincinnati where we enjoyed good company and had a few fun adventures.

On Sunday afternoon, we ventured to Krohn's Conservatory where they have beautiful greenhouse gardens (more on that in the next post) and a special Brazilian Butterly exihibit.

It was really a lot of fun. But very, very, VERY hot. The room where the butterflies were was humidly sweltering and everyone was glistening. They say its for the Amazonian butterflies, but I wonder if they just want to shuffle people in and out quickly so they make it practically unbearable to be in there longer then 45 minutes.

Here is a very cool chandelier of recycled items in the tent entryway.

I want one,
So they give you these little foam flower cutouts to act as 'butterfly landing pads". The butterflies preferred fingers. You see Rob getting one off of a flower with his hand. The picture beneath that shows Ashlyn holding one on her flower, but only after Rob put it there from his hand.




Now the little fellow below looks kind of lame and boring. But when he open his wings...it turns out the insides are a bright blue! For some reason, these little guys also like to hitch rides on people. Mostly on their pants. Without them knowing. What was crackign me up is that Miciah woudl walk right up to strange people and pluck these critters off their pants. No personal space barriers whatsoever. It was kind of funny.

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Dream House...

This is interesting in a disturbing kind of way. But I found it enlightening and want to preserve it. So here it is…

So last night I had a dream about a house. The thing about this particular house is that it was not entirely unfamiliar to me. It’s been in my dreams before. It’s a large beautiful house, and it’s always mine to have. But in previous dreams there had been a barrier to me totally taking control of it. Most of it was haunted. Haunted by spirits that terrified me. I remember specifically in a former dream a large majestic dining room with a long dark wood table and many high backed chairs and deep rich wall paneling. But I could never stay. I was afraid. Whenever I was in the house, I always knew there were parts that were haunted and parts that were not. And I always chose to live in the parts that were not because they were safer. They were shabbier, but safer. And so, thus in my dream house we lived. In 2 rooms where the wallpaper was peeling and the d├ęcor was bland and the carpets were dirty…afraid to go upstairs to the big beautiful bedrooms or majestic living and dining rooms because of what was there. Things I didn’t want to face.

But last night was remarkable…it was different this time! As I ascended the stairs to my rooms, I realized they were too small and didn’t fit us anymore. The doors were so tiny that not even my youngest could fit through them (although somehow in my dream I did…which is of course, the way it always works!) The rooms had diminished in size because a large hole with an unattached staircase had taken up all of the room we used to have. And since you could see but not technically reach the stairs, whenever you maneuvered form one room to another, or even once space to another, there was a great risk of falling. So we covered it with a carpet in an effort to expand the space. But after a few people fell through, I decided I had had enough. We were moving back in the house…back to the big glorious rooms I knew were there. The ones whose specters had kept me from them. But for some reason…I had no fear. I gathered up my children and we marched back down the hall with a little apprehension. I was pleased to find a bright and cheerfully decorated room for each of us with the doors wide open! Each room was bright; flooded with light from big windows. One room had purple walls and sported 2 large beds ; one covered in a yellow canopy and the other bed littered with big fluffy and colorful pillows. Another large room had 2 sturdy and playful bunk beds against the deep blue walls and many happy and interesting decorations. There were other bedrooms I can’t remember the details of. And there were 2 bathrooms with the doors partly open. White tiled, sink and a shower with a shower curtain in each (but oddly enough no toilet). And there was not a spirit in sight. They had miraculously left the premises. No dining room to be found, no majestic but dark living spaces haunted with former occupants…just the meeting of our basic needs (except for the toilet!). I knew we needed to find a different way to come upstairs since the carpet covered hole was no longer going to do the trick obviously. So I proceeded to the end of the hall, lighted by a large window, and found some back stairs which descended directly to the basement. The basement looked like a maze of sterile tunnels with assorted and random upward flights of stairs spawning from the main corridor which eventually ended at a city street…which was still underground. But a storm was brewing above it. Dark clouds were gathering and the wind was blowing. I quickly made my way to the end of the underground street and pushed through a closed door that brought me back to the outside of the house. I could then tell it was large and yellow, but in desperate need of some attention and repair.

And then I woke up.

Now I rarely take stock in dream interpretations, although I will confess to having a few dreams I KNEW meant something. But they were person specific…dream visits from my late husband for example. But part of me knew this dream meant something. Mostly because it was a different version of another dream I had NOT enjoyed many times before. And so I began looking for some insight online. And what I found…I found very interesting indeed.

Let’s start with the major symbols and their apparent meanings (I assume they are important because even now, nearly 24 hours later, I remember these parts very clearly):

House

To see a house in your dream, represents your own soul and self. Specific rooms in the house indicate a specific aspect of your psyche.

Haunted House

To dream of a haunted house, signifies unfinished emotional business, related to your childhood family, dead relatives, or repressed memories and feelings.

Room
To dream that you are in a room, represents a particular aspect of yourself or a specific relationship. Dreams about various rooms often relate to hidden areas of the conscious mind and different aspects of your personality. If the room is welcoming or comfortable, then it signifies opulence and satisfaction in life. If you see a dark or confined room, then it denotes that you feel trapped or repressed in a situation.

To dream that you find or discover a new room, suggests that you are developing new strengths and taking on new roles. You may be growing emotionally. Consider what you find in the discovered room as it may indicate repressed memories, fears, or rejected emotions.

Dining Room

To dream that you are in a dining room, represents your quest for knowledge and understanding.

Going up stairs:

To dream that you are walking up a flight of stairs, indicate that you are achieving a higher level of understanding. You are making progress into your spiritual, emotional or material journey. The dream is also analogous to material and thoughts that are coming to the surface

Going Down Stairs:

To dream that you are walking down a flight of stairs, represents your repressed thoughts. You are regressing back into your unconscious.

Carpet

To dream that you are installing or laying down carpet, suggests that you are trying to make your life more comfortable. The dream may also be analogous to the planning of something. You are laying out some new project or endeavor.

Hole

It may mean that you are feeling hollow or empty inside. This dream may be an awakening for you to get out and expose yourself to new interests and activities.

Small Doorway

To dream that someone or something is smaller than usual, represents feelings of insignificance, helplessness and unworthiness. To dream that you are entering through a door, signifies new opportunities that are presented before you. You are entering into a new stage in your life and moving from one level of consciousness to another.

Corridor/ Hallway

To walk along a corridor in your dream, signifies a transitional phase of self exploration. It signals spiritual enlightenment, emotional growth, physical prowess, new opportunities and mental passages in your life.

Open Doors

To see an opened door in your dream, symbolizes your receptiveness and willingness to accept new ideas/concepts. In particular, to see a light behind the door, suggests that you are moving toward greater enlightenment/spirituality.

Bedrooms

To dream that you are in the bedroom, signifies aspects of yourself that you keep private.

Bathroom

a bathroom symbolizes purification and self-renewal.

Sink

To see a sink in your dream, represents your feelings and your ability to control your emotions. You may need to cleanse yourself of past feelings and start fresh

White

White represents purity, perfection, peace, innocence, dignity, cleanliness, awareness, and new beginnings. You may be experiencing a reawakening or have a fresh outlook on life

Shower

To see a shower curtain in your dream, indicates that you are not fully expressing your emotions. To dream that you are taking a shower in clear, fresh water, symbolizes spiritual or physical renewal and forgiveness. You are washing the burdens out of your life.

Toilet (remember there wasn’t one?)

To see a toilet in your dream, symbolizes a release of emotions. You need to get rid of something in your life that is useless.

Purple

Purple is indicative of devotion, healing abilities, loving, kindness, and compassion

Yellow

If the dream is a pleasant one, then the color yellow is symbolic of intellect, energy, agility, happiness, harmony, and wisdom.

Canopy

To see a canopy in your dream, symbolizes protection.

Bright Colors

Bright colors mean awareness.

Pillows

To see a pillow in your dream, represents comfort. relaxation, ease, and/or luxury. You need to take it easy on yourself.

Blue

Blue represents truth, wisdom, heaven, eternity, devotion, tranquility, loyalty and openness. Perhaps you are expressing a desire to get away. The presence of this color in your dream, may symbolize your spiritual guide and your optimism of the future.

Bunkbeds

To see bunk beds in your dream, represent childhood and innocence.

Window

To see a window in your dream, signifies bright hopes, vast possibilities and insight.

Basement

To dream that you are in a basement, symbolizes your unconscious mind and intuition.

Underground city

To dream of an underground or underwater city, represents your unconscious and how through deeper understanding of yourself, you find commonality and shared experiences with others.

Storm

The storm also represents unexpressed fears or emotions, such as anger, rage, turmoil, etc. On a more positive note, the storm symbolizes your rising spirituality. It may signal rapid changes ahead for you.

Outside

To dream that you are outside, represents freedom, openness and opportunities. You are able to spread out and enjoy.

House in need of repair

To see an old, run-down house in your dream, represents your old beliefs, attitudes and how you used to think or feel.

To Sum Up:

So… the house is me. The old haunted house was my old self. Emotions and issues left simmering from my 2 marriages. Things I was unwilling to face. It was those things that chased me away from knowledge and understanding, I felt trapped and oppressed (the dark dining room). All of the rooms in my old haunted house were dark and oppressive. I was relegated to my old thoughts and beliefs.

Rooms represent a specific aspect of myself or a relationships. Those old rooms I was living in with the small door around the big hole…I felt unworthy and helpless to do anything about that hole. The biggest thing in my life right now that causes me to literally feel empty is my lack of spouse. So the hole must symbolize a husband. I was covering it with plans (the carpet) to avoid that regression (down stairs) back into destructive relationship habits. I think the knowing I couldn’t go back to the hole and the disconnected stairs and carpet people kept falling through (mostly my kids come to think of it) may be symbolic of my needing a new set of plans to cover the emptiness…I need a new plan to fill the hole (or husband plan). The old unsuccessful plans caused my children suffering before (falling through). New plan it is!

So the old rooms weren’t doing it for me anymore. Each room represents a part of myself…and I was finding new rooms everywhere! Well, rooms I had previously been aware of but kept from because of the haunting. I need to head down that hall. Halls are enlightenment, emotional growth, and new opportunities. The open doors show I am willing to receive new ideas and concepts. I think the fact I could move freely down the hall without fear of the haunting is very significant. If the haunted part represents unfinished emotional business…I think I may have finally moved on from what was damaging me. I was ready to deal with those emotions.

If each room represents a different part of myself… Let’s start with those bathrooms which symbolize purification and self renewal:

They were white but windowless and a bit darker…a little bit of oppression and trapping going on there of my own making surely. But oh, what was available! White represents purity, perfection, peace, innocence, dignity, cleanliness, awareness, and new beginnings and opportunity for a reawakening or to have a fresh outlook on life. The doors to those rooms were open, but I didn’t go in. But I also don’t remember seeing them in my hallway before or in the house at all. I saw a shower curtain which symbolizes repressed emotions and a sink which indicates the need to wash away past emotions. No toilet means I need a release of emotions…to get rid of beliefs that are useless to me.

The two bedrooms I remember (bedrooms are parts of myself I keep private).…let’s talk about the purple one. I remember feeling warm and welcome in both which means satisfaction in those areas. Nice to know the only area that still gets me is the bathroom. Feeling pretty good about the others I think…chasing away those specters again. Letting go of the past. But anyway…the purple room.

Purple stands for devotion, healing abilities, loving, kindness, and compassion. Inside I was protecting my energy and happiness (yellow canopy). The other bed had bright colored pillows…an awareness that I need to take it easy and be easier on myself.

The blue room… Blue represents truth, wisdom, heaven, eternity, devotion, tranquility, loyalty and openness. And optimism. There were two bunkbeds…which represent childhood and innocence. So four beds…and I have four children. Eternity, devotion, loyalty and optimism definitely fit into that well. (Ah, now the fact that these were bedrooms makes more sense. Look at all the protecting I’m doing!)

And now we go to the basement…regression into my subconscious. Which makes sense since basements represent the subconscious. And we’re in another corridor…mental passages with more self exploration…with ascending stairs everywhere…all of which symbolize possible routes for progress on spiritual, emotional and material improvements. I end up in the city with a storm over it…a representation of how unexpressed fears and emotions are keeping me from a deeper understanding of myself and therefore commonality with others. Which is interesting since I was escaping the emptiness with plans, that I discover the best way for me to equate with others is to better understand myself by facing my fears and emotions. Luckily, the storms also represent rising spirituality and rapid change. And then I open a closed door…the end of a phase of my life…and head outside.

Outside is freedom, openness and opportunity. I look at my house in need of repair which represents the way I used to feel…old beliefs and attitudes. I think the house is yellow for this reason…there is another connotation for yellow if the dream is bad (Which all the other dreams about this house were!) “It represents deceit, disgrace, betrayal, cowardice and sickness. You have a fear or an inability to make a decision or to take action. Your desire to please others is at the risk of sacrificing your own needs and happiness. As a result, you are experiencing many setbacks.

The previous paragraph perfectly describes how I used to feel about myself. All that has changed! I think I have progressed, moved on, moved forward, found some security and have a few tasks ahead of me in order to truly be free.

Intellesting, Velly intellesting.