Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A web - perhaps somewhat like Charolette's

How can I explain the events of the last couple of days? I probably can't, at least not well. My first thought was to describe my life as a web, a tangled up mess, but if you look closer, you may see some wonderful pattern, or beauty like in Charolette's Web.
Monday, in the wee small hours of the morning, Ben departed for a week long TDY (tour of duty) in California. I can't complain much, because it is only a week, but I certainly would have liked to go with him! Before he left I reminded him that, although I didn't want to seem pessimistic, something always goes wrong when he is away. Sure enough Monday evening Grace bit a piece of cork off of a toy and it lodged in her throat. I tried not to react or panic because I saw she could still breathe, however she was wincing and crying, gagging and drooling terribly. I called the Air Force nurse line, which called me back 45 MINUTES LATER, then told me to take her to the ER. So here I am in freezing North Dakota with 6 little kids and no husband available. The web feels tangled but this is where if I look closely I see a beautiful design. A friend had just stopped in to deliver something, and he offered to stay with the boys while I took Grace to the hospital. (His daughter just happened to trip and cut herself so badly he had the ambulance come check on her while I was gone. Crazy! But she is okay.) After a lengthy stay at the ER, Grace having worked that cork farther down and feeling happy and cheering up everyone else at the ER, we were told that they couldn't do an xray to see if it went in her lungs because wood doesn't show up. So, after much ado, they listened and made sure she was breathing well and sent us home. Thankfully Grace seems just fine. So, I went to the van to get home, but lo and behold, my van is stuck in the hospital parking lot! A man comes out soon after and has a truck. I asked him if he had a tow rope or anything to help. He replied in the negative and then left! After several more attempts to get out on my own, including digging and kicking snow away from my tires, I gave up and climbed back in the van and said a prayer. Again, beauty. Three large men happened to walk out. I asked for help and they hoisted up my huge van and freed me. I got home safely, although I did get stuck in my driveway halfway up. But I still got home safely. Things were a bit crazy and I can honestly say I laughed at all the misfortunes. But amidst it all I knew that "God was in the very details" of my life, as Neal A. Maxwell would say. A friend came at just the right time. A prayer was answered immediately. I think among all trials we can see a beautiful pattern if we are willing to look more closely at what we think may be a tangled web. A loving Heavenly Father lets me have further developmental experiences to learn and grow from, but He never leaves me alone. I miss my husband, who is my best friend and the most handsome man alive (sorry to the rest of you, but it's true), but I at least I know that however long he is gone, I can have peace knowing that I am watched over. I am a lucky Wilbur with a Charlotte's Web.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Our amusements in the frozen tundra

I think we have so many posts about snow and severe cold. Honestly, the weather here is just extreme, and it occupies so much of our lives. Every few days we get nearly half a foot to a foot with huge snow drifts in our driveway (3 1/2 to 4 feet)! I really am about ready to hybernate and not try to go anywhere!

Our back doors are completely unopenable. William is standing by our patio door. Not only does that seem like a lot of snow, but we took out the porch out that door, and when you walk out there is about a foot or more drop. A lot of snow! And winter is just beginning in North Dakota!

Dallin turned 4 on Saturday and it was a joy to watch him. He is so excited about everything and loved every tiny thing about his big day!

The Air Force base has an outdoor recreation office where you can rent all types of things. We decided to rent a snowmobile for a couple of days, trying to find entertainment in this crazy winter wonderland. The boys loved it, although it was very cold and we really had to bundle up.

I had to add this picture. My husband is so handsome and brave. He is always out shoveling, or bringing in wood for the stove despite temperatures. You can't tell well on this picture, but his eyelashes and eyebrows are frozen!
We find ways to entertain ourselves. Ben drew mustaches on the boys one night, after Abel had done so on himself already. We think they are quite handsome, even with colored mustaches!