to laugh or cry?

Before I share the following snippets of life in the past few weeks, I must note that while Scripture doesn’t explicitly teach that God has a sense of humor, I feel like it’s an undeniable truth.

As an expression of jealousy that the bigger chickens have successfully laid eggs for several weeks, Snowflake saw an opportunity to fly-hop herself out of the coop and decided to do a little free-ranging in the back yard. Oops. I eventually scooted the other chickens to their roost and created a Hansel-and-Gretel style trail of scratch and watermelon rinds for her to follow into the coop of her own volition. It worked. Considering that I will probably eat her someday when she has given me all the eggs her body will produce, it’s disturbing to see I am fitting into the role of the fairy-tale witch pretty well here.
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Though I have been mercifully spared from any additional medical catastrophes accompanying our recent miscarriage, I am obediently taking quite a bit of physician-recommended ibuprofen. I find this warning most …ironic, I suppose.
ibuprofenI found out Walgreens has been selling a generic product that makes a very, very bold claim. (I considered rubbing it all over my tummy just in case.)
downsize (7)Apparently the shower needed some ultimate healing, too, because the caulk mysteriously peeled itself up, so we were without a shower for a while until I VERY CAREFULLY cleaned it out and applied the new caulk. Then we waited even longer than label directions indicated before testing it out, just in case.0813131624In that process, I scratched my eye, which was depleted of it’s natural defense mechanism (tears) due to excessive crying jaunts,  and then ended up in severe pain with symptoms of infection that necessitated more visits to the Doctor’s office and a very expensive bottle of antibiotic drops, which made me gasp even after my insurance kicked in their share.
downsize (9)When I say this corneal abrasion caused “severe pain,” I really mean that THERE ARE NO WORDS to describe it, which is saying a lot coming from me. All is mostly well now, I’m just overly sensitive to bright lights yet and wearing sunglasses most of the time.

In every one of these little situations, I haven’t know whether to laugh or cry in response… but there has been plenty of both of those happening at our house, sometimes even at the same time. I think this is healthy. I have learned it is possible to be so overwhelmed by emotion that you are laughing and crying simultaneously, which happened when I was telling Aaron the only thing I wanted in life was to become hermits, get a dog, and hike the Grand Canyon until we died of old age, and I was suddenly struck with the inspiration to name the dog “Burro.” It is more awkward when one person is in agony, as I was during my opthalmological issues, and another unnamed individual is laughing, saying things like, “It seems you are a picture of perpetual misery.”

Other than all this, I snuck in another  summer road-trip to Michigan. Crazy? Yes, but it means I spent a weekend on the beach with some of the best girls in the world AND got to see almost everyone on both sides of our family for a few hours when we weren’t immediately setting up for a wedding, which is rare for us.beach weekendPlenty of laughter and crying happened during that trip, too, in addition to several stops at the same family-style diner for breakfast several days in a row, because that’s how we do things. This unpredictable mix of joy and sadness is all as it should be for now, I think.

Outpost Memories

We spent some time last night with college friends swapping stories about our days at Hillsdale College, and I felt a pang of regret that I didn’t mention something in my last post. Yes, it’s cold in our house sometimes now, but it’s nothing like the house Aaron lived in during our Senior year.

The Outpost, as everyone called this house, was a special place. I have heard it was a dignified dwelling in it’s heyday, which was supposedly just one college generation — a few years, really — before us. However, when Aaron came back from Iraq and moved in to one of the upstairs bedrooms, it was clear that the former grandeur had faded. We (six guys and the girls who visited frequently) soon began referring to this house as “The Slum,” and the landlord, unfortunately, “The Slumlord.” The occupants discovered that, among other problems like the porch collapsing,  the walls were as thin as cardboard. When the weather chilled they could only afford enough heat to keep the pipes from freezing.

the outpost

This was pretty problematic. One time it was SO COLD that Aaron and I both sat on his bed under the covers slurping our hot chili dinner before premarital counseling. I think his room-mate felt a little uncomfortable with that arrangement. Turnabout is fair play – one time we came in and saw him with his girlfriend huddled under a makeshift tent of a blanket over a space heater. On another occasion, a group of us watched a movie piled on a couch in our own sleeping bags.

Sorting through these photos brings back so many memories! There were nicknames for several of the house’s occupants and various special ladies, a mouse that drowned in the sink of dirty dishes, and plenty of the things you’d expect from a bunch of guys living in a house together: chore disputes, strange smells, and even some bathroom drama. Those guys did put on a special dinner that winter before a dance, which was the nicest the place looked all year.

outpost dinner

It’s good to remember these humble beginnings, though I’m sure our memories are a little more fond than we would have suspected during the Outpost days…

Outpost driveway(Isn’t she a beaut!?)