Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Thanksgiving Feast

Levi's preschool has an annual Thanksgiving Feast.  All the three year old classes are assigned Pilgrim or Indian hats (which they make).  They stand on the stage and sing a few songs, and then join their parents in the cafeteria for a feast of chicken nuggets, mashed potatos, and corn.

You can imagine my delight when Levi's class was the last to file on to the stage, which means they would be in the front row.  Easier to see, easier to take pictures.  I was really excited to watch a little kid show from the audience, as compared to my years as an elementary music teacher where I was the one responsible for the show.

Levi walks in with his class, and it's clear he didn't realize what "audience" meant.  He is looking all around, but not necessarily for Herb and I - I don't think it's crossed his mind yet that we'd be there.  We were sitting in the third row, and when he finally spotted us, his eyes lit up and he waved.

As the children all found their spots on the stage and got adjusted by the teachers, they all were silently grinning and waving like made men.  Cameras were in the air, flashing to my left and right, and Levi just keep smiling at Herb and I.

"Hey Mom!  Where'd you park?"

Herb and I looked at each other.  Surely that wasn't our child who was yelling from the stage.  

"Mom!!  Where did you park?"

At this point, I was already choked up from the sheer adorableness of my son in his first show, so when he started calling out to me, I could do nothing but hang my head and laugh hysterically.  But it was the "I have the giggles in the middle of the sermon" kind of laugh.

Then Levi, who must actually be a little Amish, realized that everyone was taking pictures of what he perceived to be himself.  I should

mention that lately he won't smile for the camera, and in fact turns his head to the side if he sees one.

He looks at someone in the front row, who was probably taking a picture of their own kid, and says,

"Hey!  Stop doing that."

This is Levi's reaction to the camera.

Shortly later, the singing started, which of course was adorable.  There was one OMG moment when a little girl fell off the back of the risers, but poof, just like that, she was back up with a smile on her face.  Obviously there was a teacher sitting right behind here.

After a few songs, the students sat down in their spots and one teacher began reading them a Thanksiving book.  Once again, everyone was quiet, except one child, who shall remain nameless (itwaslevi). 


I only wish I had these outbursts on video.  

We joined the class for the feast of potatoes, corn, and nuggets, and I coerced Levi into one posed picture.

It was a fun morning.

Sunday, November 24, 2013


In June I wrote about how I was feeling like a 1950s housewife - cloth diapers and potty training with no dryer, dangling on the clothes line.  One car broken, leaving Herb and I to share the good car, usually meaning I stayed home all day or walked to wherever I needed to go.  Windows thrown open, avoiding the installation of air conditioning units (which was changed two weeks later).

In the last 2 months, both of these things have been remedied...for free.

Hence the title, Blessed.

We were given a car (a 1995 Toyota with 220,000 miles on it, hehe, but it goes from A to B!) AND a clothes dryer.

The point of this is

a. to follow up and make sure you don't think I'm some kind of martyr

b. to publically thank Denise, Cali, and Candy for literally making my life so much simpler and blessing Herb and I in ways they probably don't even know

c. to remind myself again that God provides and give Him credit where it is due.  It didn't happen right away, but just when we needed it most. The car and dryer are both older models - but they WORK perfectly and meet our needs exactly.

He is good, He is sovereign, and He cares about the minor stuff, too.

Therefore, do now worry about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with Thanksgiving, present your requests to God, and the peace the transcends all understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:6-7

Saturday, November 2, 2013


A continuation of me recording funny things I want to remember...see other ones here...

Levi loves the song "Ho Hey," by the Lumineers.  Blame my love of it on Uncle Josh, and my love turned into Levi's love.  In fact, you can even here it in Levi's birthday video.  So, the chorus goes,

"I belong to you, you belong to me, you're my sweetheart.
I belong to you, you belong to me, you're my sweetheart (Ho!  Hey!)"

So, today Levi (very innocently) sings,

"I belong to you, you belong to me, you're my sweet ho."

Similarly, he's been making up his own songs.  This song I'm going to tell you about is, I believe, based on "Ho, Hey."  Levi's song goes like this,

"Listen to my heart, listen to my heart, listen to my heart, and all the way it cries."

Pretty depressing for a three year old, right?  I guess Cana already broke his heart (Melody, do you know about this?).

Finally, the other day he was play a basketball game on the iPad and he shouted,

"Go, Starbucks!  Go!"

Friday, November 1, 2013

October Recap (also ...the most pictures ever in one post)

October has been a busy month!!

First was Jen and Ricky's wedding.  Levi was the ring bearer, Savannah was the flower girl, and Herb and I helped out with decorations, music, invitations, and wedding craziness.  I WILL be doing an entire post on this because it was a HUGE dream come true in my "open adoption" scenario...just waiting for some more pictures.

The very same weekend of Jen's wedding, we high-tailed it to Baltimore for the Girlfriend Getaway conference.  Herb is on the team for this season helping with sound/lighting/technical things, so it's a fun excuse for us to get away together and get to serve in a ministry together.  Although, I really do love me some girlfriend time (me and Jess below).

The following week farm show (read more about that here).

The second weekend of October, we traveled to Pittsburgh to spend some time with Herb's brother's family and his mom and step-dad.  Levi enjoyed doing some trick-or-treating with his cousins, Ellie and Cora.  Yay for a last minute costume.  Overalls for the win.

Josh and Sarah also treated us to the Natural History Museum (they have a season pass) and Levi LOVED playing with these dinosaurs.  Mental note - find some of these for Christmas.

On the last day of our Pittsburgh trip, we spend the day with Herb's mom and step-dad.

They took us to a cute little town with lots of shops, Valant, which I have now coined "The Pittsburgh Lititz."

In the middle of the month things got pretty quiet while Levi and I fought of disease (ok, exaggeration, it was just an ear infection and bronchitis), I had to not watch Charlotte for the first time (due to said sickness), and meanwhile the roof on our rental house in York gave way to the rain (and now we need a new roof...booo).  We did squeeze in a few playdates and have dinner with some old friends, but it was comparatively quiet to the rest of the month.

At the end of the month, we met up with some old friends from college and visited Millersville during homecoming weekend.  We had a great time checking out the new music building (our jealousy turned in to "this is the house we built").
Some of the old gang...with kids now!

The Suereths in front of the new music building. 

We've been there multiple times since graduation, but each time I get a little more sappy thinking about the place where Herb and I met, built a friendship, started dating/courting, and planned a wedding.  Happy memories.  Not to mention a solid music education and a few more amazing friendships that have lasted the last decade.

Sammy found all of our old recital CDs.

Levi and I in a practice room...playing "Tractor Tractor."

The iconic stairs of Lyte Auditorium...which now lead to nowhere.

The "next generation" of Marauders?

Finally, last night rounded out the month with a second go at trick or treating, this time in our own neighborhood.  My brother, mom, and neice joined us.

The kids were dressed as Prince William and Kate Middleton on their wedding day.  Joelle already had the crown and white dress (actually a hand-me-down from Levi's other cousin, Cora!).  I found the red shirt for Levi (actually a bathrobe) for $1.50 on Wednesday, and my mom had lots of gold buttons in her stash.  His sash is a neck tie, his belt is actually mine, and the hat was ten cents at the thrift store.

They look pretty acurate, right?

Ok, not really, but it was still fun!  And Grandma Meemaw had fun handing out candy at our house.  And then she cleaned up my kitchen.  She's pretty much a rock star.

As if that wasn't enough, after trick-or-treating Mom watched Levi for a few hours while Herb and I went to lead worship at a really special ministry that was taking place at our church.  I won't go into details about it here, but our job was to just worship for a few hours while people came and went, some staying to pray or read or journal.  Picking music to last for two hours was an ordeal - and after those two hours were over, my poor little left hand pinky was toast.  (Octaves, much?)  Our voices were tired, we were sweaty, our backs were sore, but what an awesome experience.  Herb and I love doing worship together, and it's pretty special to think that we've been making music together for 12 years - even longer than we've been a couple.  Glad we could use our gifts to honor God and serve some people last night.

October was fun - but I was grateful when I flipped the calendar today to see that it is pretty much empty at this point (for now).