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Mom’s dictionary

In preparation for Mother's Day, I thought it might be good to share some words from "Mom's dictionary."

Mom's dictionary

airplane - What Mom impersonates to get a 1-year-old to eat strained beets

alien - What Mom would suspect had invaded her house if she spotted a child-sized creature cleaning up after itself

amnesia - A condition that enables a woman who has gone through labor to have a baby again

apple - Nutritious lunchtime dessert that children will often trade for cupcakes

baby -

    1. Mom's youngest child
    2. Dad, when he gets a cold

bathroom - a room used by the entire family and believed (by all except Mom) to be self-cleaning

"because" - Mom's reason for making kids do things or not do things which can't be explained logically

bed and breakfast - Two things the kids don't like to make for themselves

bottle feeding - An opportunity for Daddy to get up at 2 a.m. too

carpet - Expensive floor covering used to catch spills and clean mud off shoes

car pool - Complicated system of transportation where Mom always winds up going the farthest, with the biggest bunch of kids who have had the most sugar

China - Legendary country reportedly populated by children who love leftover vegetables

cook -

    1. Act of preparing food for consumption
    2. Mom's other name

date - Infrequent outings with Dad, where Mom can enjoy worrying about the kids in a different setting

defense - What you'd better have around de yard if you're going to let de children play outside

drinking glass - Any carton or bottle left open in the fridge

drooling - How teething babies wash their chins

dumbwaiter - One who asks if the kids would care to order dessert

ear - A place where kids store dirt

eat - What kids do between meals, but not at them

energy - Element of vitality kids always have an oversupply of until asked to do something

family planning - The art of spacing your children the proper distance apart to keep you on the edge of financial disaster

feedback - The inevitable result when the baby doesn't appreciate the strained carrots

full name - What you call your child when you're mad at him

garbage - A collection of refuse items, the taking out of which Mom assigns to a different family member each week, then winds up doing herself

geniuses - Amazingly, all of Mom's children

grandparents - The people who think your children are wonderful even though they're sure you're not raising them right

gum - Adhesive for the hair

hamper - A wicker container with a lid, usually surrounded by, but not containing, dirty clothing

Handi-Wipes - Pants, shirtsleeves, drapes, etc.

hearsay - What toddlers do when anyone mutters a dirty word

independent - How we want our children to be as long as they do everything we say

look out! - What it's too late for your child to do by the time you scream it

prenatal - When your life was still somewhat your own

prepared childbirth - A contradiction in terms

puddle - A small body of water that draws other small bodies wearing dry shoes into it

show off - A child who is more talented than yours

sterilize - What you do to your first baby's pacifier by boiling it and to your last baby's pacifier by blowing on it

storeroom - The distance required between the supermarket aisles so that children in shopping carts can't quite reach anything

temper tantrums - What you should keep to a minimum so as to not upset the children

top bunk - Where you should never put a child wearing Superman jammies

two-minute warning - When the baby's face turns red and she begins to make those familiar grunting noises

verbal - Able to whine in words

whodunit - None of the kids that live in your house

whoops - An exclamation that translates roughly into "get a sponge"


This first week of summer "vacation" is busier than last week! I started my summer job today at IT Help Desk on campus - work I really enjoy. This evening I had a wedding rehearsal - I'm the lower voice in two duets at the wedding tomorrow evening of a young lady I've known since she was a toddler. We're also trying to get ready for the arrival of our daughter Megan and grandson Drew this Saturday for a week's stay - our son-in-law's Mother's Day gift to Megan and to Becka.


"There's no news that is news to God." - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=

If a mute swears in sign language, does his mother wash his hands with soap?

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A Not-So-Grave Matter

Tuesday of this week is April Fools' Day here in the US and in many other countries. What I'm posting today seems as if it could be an April Fools' story, but I've checked in out on snopes.com and found that it's all too true!

Barbara Sue Manire passed away on her 64th birthday in 2005. Her tombstone pictured below is the way it looked for the first year after her burial in the Highland Cemetery in Okemah, Oklahoma.

In case you can't read it clearly, the epitaph reads, "Our mom ... Her humor lives on." Here's why....

Barbara Sue Manire, a women with a great sense of humor, always used to say that when she died she wanted a parking meter on her grave that says 'Expired.' Barbara Sue's daughter, Sherri Ann Weeks confirmed that such an unusual decorative feature on her mother's tombstone was indeed her mother's idea. Sherri said, "Mom always said she wanted a parking meter with 'time expired.' And she wanted to be on the front row of the cemetery so she could see what was going on. We gave her what she wanted. ... Our dad wanted his final inscription to be 'I told 'em I was sick,'" said Weeks, "but we were never sure if he was serious about it. With Mom, she talked about the parking meter all the time. We knew she wanted it."

The parking meter wasn't placed at the time Barbara Sue Manire was buried since they weren't sure if it was the right thing to do after all. Her family mulled the whole idea over for about a year before Sherri's brother, Terry Heiskill, bought the meter on eBay. A hole was drilled in the gravestone to accommodate the parking meter.

Below are two different angles on the meter itself.

You can see the tombstone online by clicking here


chickadee update...

The last several times I've peeked into the bird house, the mama has been on her eggs. So I don't know at this point how many eggs there are currently. More details as they become available....


Give us a sense of humor.
Give us the grace to see a joke,
To get some humor out of life,
And pass it on to other folk.

- author unknown

=^..^= =^..^=

Fools rush in - and get all the best seats.

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Jewish Perspective

It's been good to be back in classes again this week, though that may sound strange to some. 🙂 As great as Bible Conference was, there's just something nice about the regular routine too. I've been ruminating on what I heard last week as I seek to make applications to my own personal life. I just discovered that, not only could people listen to the conference messages as they streamed online, they can also listen to or download .mp3s of all the messages at http://www.bju.edu/campus/events/bibleconf/2008.html

Although all the speakers were very good, a personal favorite of mine was Craig Hartman. He's a completed Jew, that is, a Jew who has accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his personal Savior, and hence, as Messiah. I love Craig automatically as a person because he's just himself - a man with a highly developed sense of humor and a unique style of speaking. But I love him also as a speaker because of the interesting perspective he gives as one who is totally familiar with the Jewish perspective. Here's something he told the audience at the beginning of his second message of the week, a message where he explained some of what was happening in the John 7:37-43 narrative: "If you want to understand the Bible, don't go back 300 years to Europe. Go back 2,000 years to Israel. That's where the answers are! Opinions of people 300 years ago in Europe may be interesting, they may be challenging, they may be convicting, but to be perfectly honest, in many cases they have absolutely no idea what they're talking about, because many of them had never taken a moment to look into what did the Jews think back in the days that Jesus lived." He went on to tell what the Jews did during the Feast of Tabernacles, and how that explained some of what happened in the event in John. I'd like to encourage you to listen to this message. If you'd like to learn more about Craig's ministry, go to http://shalomnyc.org

We went to Living Gallery this afternoon at 4:30. What a powerful message, and what a focus on Christ! Wow!

As I thought about the Jewish perspective, as described above, I looked in my files for something to post. Enjoy!

Yiddish Proverbs and Rules of Life (many have been attributed to Jewish grandmothers)

If you can't say something nice, say it in Yiddish.

Always whisper the names of diseases.

If they give you, take; if they take from you, yell!

Charge nothing, and you'll get a lot of customers.

Don't spit into the well - you might drink from it later.

Do not worry about tomorrow, because you do not even know what may happen to you today.

You can't chew with somebody else's teeth.

If you spit upwards, you're bound to get it back in the face.

Had you gotten up early, you wouldn't have needed to stay up late.

When a fool is silent, he too is counted among the wise.

One who has the reputation of an early riser may safely lie abed 'til noon.

For dying, you always have time.

Silence is the fence around wisdom.

If it tastes good, it's probably not kosher.

No one looks good in a yarmulke.

Why spoil a good meal with a big tip?

WASP's leave and never say good-bye. Jews say good-bye and never leave.

Pork is forbidden, but a pig in a blanket makes a nice hors d'oeuvre.

If you don't eat, it will kill me.

Anything worth saying is worth repeating a thousand times.

Where there's smoke, there may be smoked salmon.

Never leave a restaurant empty-handed.

And what's so wrong with dry turkey?

Spring forward, fall back, winter in Miami Beach.

A bad matzoh ball makes a good paperweight.

Before you read the menu, read the prices.

There comes a time in every man's life when he must stand up and tell his mother he's an adult. This usually happens at around age 45.

No meal is complete without leftovers.

If you have to ask the price, you can't afford it. But if you can afford it, make sure you tell everybody what you paid.

Without Jewish mothers, who would need therapy?


A few centuries ago, the pope decided that all the Jews had to leave Rome. Naturally there was a big uproar from the Jewish community. So the pope made a deal. He would have a religious debate with a member of the Jewish community. If the Jew won, the Jews could stay. If the pope won, the Jews would have to leave.

Being outnumbered, the Jews realized that they had no choice. They looked around for a champion who could defend their faith, but no one wanted to volunteer. It was too risky. So to represent them they finally picked an old man named Moishe who spent his life sweeping up after people. Being old and poor, he had less to lose, so he agreed. He asked only for one addition to the debate. Not being used to saying very much as he cleaned up around the settlement, he asked that neither side be allowed to talk. (A strange debate indeed! Sounds like some of our political debates - where they say so little they're really saying nothing! Enough editorializing....) Reluctantly, the pope agreed to this odd debate format, yet confident that he could win using strong symbolism through hand gestures alone.

The day of the great debate came. Moishe and the pope sat opposite each other for a full minute before the pope raised his hand and showed three fingers.

Moishe looked back at him and raised one finger.

The pope waved his fingers in a circle around his head.

Moishe pointed to the ground where he sat.

The pope pulled out a wafer and a glass of wine. Moishe pulled out an apple.

The pope stood up and said, "I give up. This man is too good! The Jews can stay."

An hour later, the cardinals were all around the pope asking him what happened. The pope said, "First I held up three fingers to represent the Trinity.

"He responded by holding up and waving one finger to remind me that there was still one God common to both our religions. Then I waved my finger around me to show him that God was all around us. He responded by pointing to the ground, showing that God was also right here with us. I pulled out the wine and the wafer to show that God absolves us from our sins. He pulled out an apple to remind me of original sin. He had an answer for everything. What could I do?"

Meanwhile, the Jewish community had crowded around Moishe, amazed that this old, almost feeble-minded man had done what all their scholars had insisted was impossible! "What happened?" they asked.

"Well," said Moishe, "first he said to me that the Jews had three days to get out of here. I told him that not one of us was leaving. Then he told me that this whole city would be cleared of Jews. I let him know that we were staying right here."

"And then?" asked a woman.

"I don't know," said Moishe. "He took out his lunch and I took out mine."


A Jewish boy comes home from school and tells his mother he has been given a part in the school play.

"Wonderful," says the mother, "What part is it?"

The boy replies, "I will play the part of the Jewish husband!"

The mother scowls and says, "Go back and tell your teacher that you want a speaking part!"


"It's amazing how much time we waste that we could have spent in prayer." - Dr. Greg McLaughlin

=^..^= =^..^=

For every credibility gap, there is a gullibility gap.

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Dads Survive Somehow

Grandma and I are enjoying seeing our grandson Drew on webcam over the internet as we talk by Skype to Megan. He's cooing and smiling more and more, just like his grandfather. At Drew's check up last week the doctor said he's now passed the 8 pound mark and is doing very well. Yippee!

As a final installment for Father's Day, here's an article by Dave Barry I found in my files. I chuckled and LOL often while reading this one - it's so exaggeratedly true!

Miracle of Birth: That Dads Survive
by Dave Barry
Sunday, January 23, 2000

So my wife and I are preparing for childbirth. When I say "my wife and I," I of course mean "my wife." She will be the most directly involved. On behalf of all men, I just want to take a moment here to get down on my knees and thank whoever invented our current biological system, under which the woman's job is to have the baby somehow go from the inside of her body to the outside of her body, in clear violation of every known law of physics, and the man's job is to stand around looking supportive and upbeat and periodically no matter what is actually happening to the woman, say, in an upbeat and perky voice, "You're doing great!"

My wife thinks the only fair system would be, every time the woman had a contraction, she got to hit her husband on the body part of her choice with a ball-peen hammer. Of course she is kidding. But only because her contractions have not yet started.

We've been going to Childbirth Classes, which involve sitting in a classroom filled with expectant couples and a mounting sense of dread. The teacher usually starts with a scientific discussion of childbirth, in which she shows us various models and diagrams to give us an idea of what will be happening when the Big Moment arrives. In my opinion, the most informative way to do this would be to hold up a bowling ball and a drinking straw, and say: "Basically, this has to go through this. Ha Ha!"

But our teacher keeps fairly technical. After a while, we're starting to feel confident about this childbirth thing. We're thinking, "OK, all that has to happen is the cervix has to dilate to 10 centimeters! How hard can that be? I wonder what a cervix is? Also, centimeter."

So we're pondering these abstract questions and maybe thinking about what we're going to have for dinner, when suddenly, with no warning, the teacher turns out the lights and shows a horror movie. Oh, it starts out innocently enough: There is a nice couple consisting of a woman who is pregnant and a man who is supportive-looking and generally has a beard. They seem happy, but you just know she's going to go into labor. You want to stop her. It's exactly like those scary movies where the heroine goes down into the basement, and you want to shout, "Don't go down into the basement!", except in the childbirth class you want to shout, "Don't go into labor!"

But she always does go into labor. It seems to last a lot longer than necessary. Hours turn into days, and still she is in labor. Outside her window, the seasons change. Her doctor grows old and gray and eventually is replaced by a new doctor, and still this poor woman is in labor. Her husband keeps telling her that she's doing great, but you can tell from her expression that he's very lucky she doesn't have a ball-peen hammer. Eventually she becomes so deranged that she apparently does not even notice that there is a cameraperson shooting extreme close-up footage of...OK, let's just say that it is not her most flattering angle.

When the woman gets approximately to her 15th year of labor, she begins making noises that you rarely hear outside of nature documentaries and her husband edges back a little bit in case she gets her hand on a scalpel. The movie now becomes very explicit, causing the entire childbirth class to go into a mass cringe, all of us hunched up and involuntarily protecting as many of our body parts as possible. I use this time to practice my squinting, which is the most important thing the husband learns in childbirth class. I use a special Lamaze squinting technique that enables me to prevent virually all rays of light from penetrating my eyeballs.

When the woman in the movie makes a noise identical to what you would hear if a live yak went through a garlic press, I unsquint my eyes just enough to see it happen, the Blessed Event, the timeless miracle that makes the whole thing worthwhile: An alien bursting out of the woman's chest cavity. No seriously, what happens is that the woman has a baby, via a process that makes what happened in "Alien" look like a episode of "Teletubbies." Then our childbirth-class teacher turns the light on, and the pregnant women all turn to face their husbands, and they all have the same facial expression, which says: "this is not fair." We husbands respond supportively and pat their arms in a reassuring manner because we're sure that they're going to do great!


"The task of Christian parents is to transmit their heritage to the next generation." - Dr. Jim Deuink

=^..^= =^..^=
Grandpa Rob

People who say they sleep like a baby obviously don't have one.

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The Cost of Love

We are thoroughly enjoying our week with Jim, Megan, and Drew. The last time we saw him in person, he was still hooked up to all kinds of things in the NICU. Now he's a strong, constantly wiggling, newborn-size baby boy. He goes to the doctor's office today for a well-baby check up and to get four shots. We hope to hear that he's grown a lot since his last check up. Below is a picture of Drew with Megan holding up to him the smallest of his preemie clothes - something he fit into just a couple of weeks ago. He's already into newborn diapers and the largest of his preemie outfits are beginning to be too small.

picture of our growing boy

Now that he's big enough to use the baby bathtub, he is actually enjoying his bathtime....

picture of bath time

We went to Ohio a few days ago to see my mom. She really enjoyed meeting her newest great-grandchild. Below is a four generation picture from that visit. As of right now, I was the only one in the picture whose eyes aren't blue.

picture of four generations

Yesterday Megan took us to a store we'd never been to before - IKEA - and within five minutes Becka commented, "Well, I've found my new favorite store." As I said, this has been a great week for us!

It's been fun to watch our oldest child parenting this week. We are quickly reminded of how much time and work goes into caring for a newborn. It brought to mind this final Mother's Day post for this year. All you moms out there enjoy your special day this Sunday. All you kids out there, spoil your mom!

The Cost of Love

A little boy came up to his mother in the kitchen one evening while she was fixing dinner and handed her a piece of paper. After his mom dried her hands on her apron, she read what he had written.

For cutting the grass: $5.00
For cleaning up my room this week: $1.00
For going to the store for you: $.50
Baby-sitting my kid brother while you went shopping: $.25
Taking out the garbage: $1.00
For getting a good report card: $5.00
For cleaning up and raking the yard: $2.00

Total owed: $14.75

As the mother looked at her son, he could see that she was thinking. She picked up the pen and turned over the paper he'd written on. She wrote:

For the nine months I carried you while you were growing inside me: No Charge.
For all the nights that I've sat up with you, doctored you, and prayed for you: No Charge.
For all the trying times, and all the tears that you've caused through the years: No Charge.
For all the time that I've pondered what I knew was ahead in life for you: No Charge.
For the toys, food, clothes, and even wiping your nose: No Charge, Son.

When you add it up, the cost of my love is: No Charge.

When the boy finished reading what his mother had written, there were big tears in his eyes, and he looked straight up at his mother and said, "Mom, I sure do love you."

And then he took the pen and on his side of the "bill" wrote in great big letters, "PAID IN FULL ".

=^..^= =^..^=

Children will soon forget your presents; they will always remember your presence.

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