Girls’ Weekend!

The last weekend of September, a few friends and I headed to the north shore of MN, near Lutsen. We had a BLAST! Food, waterfalls, nails, shopping, hiking, food, hiking, food, chick flick, wine, food, books, magazines…did I mention food? 😉

Can’t wait for the next girls’ weekend!

And some of my top recommendations of places to visit on Minnesota North Shore are:
World’s Best Donuts (They were closed when we went on Saturday! And we seriously drove all the way back up to Grand Marais the next morning just to get them. Worth it.)
Coho Cafe (though we were quite disappointed with their portion sizes when we ordered the food to go)
Angry Trout Cafe
Temperance River State Park (for hiking/scenery)

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A Part of Her

Back in June, we had a storm one evening that knocked the power out. The thunder was loud, the lightning bright, and the kids woke and we all went downstairs to cuddle. This was about 3 a.m. Around 4 a.m., things were letting up, and we headed back upstairs to bed. Anja tripped over the fan in her room (which was silent because of the power outage) and from what we discerned later, must have hit her nose on her bed frame. All I heard was “My nose! My nose! It’s bleeding!”

I found her in the dark and brought her to the hallway, where there was at least a tiny bit of light from the storm/moon/whatever. I gasped. She was not bleeding from her nostrils, as I had assumed, but through a giant gash across the bridge of her nose. I brought her to the bathroom and immediately clamped a cloth over it and pinched and screamed for my husband to bring something to see with. The kids had been playing with our only flashlight earlier in the day and had lost it, so he brought the only thing he could think of, the Kindle. As we surveyed the damage in the dim glow, I got a little panicky. We didn’t know where the nearest ER was (forgot to look it up after moving) or if she was in any shape to be driven there, so we called 911. The cops arrived first, then the paramedics. They said she did need to go to the ER and told us where it was so we wouldn’t have to pay the ambulance fee.

We arrived there around 5 a.m. and were there until 9 a.m., mostly waiting for Anja’s local anesthesia to take effect, getting her nose irrigated (they were expecting water to drain all the way through to her nasal cavity from the cut, but thankfully it didn’t go through), and stitching her up.

She was a trooper. There were moments of pain and panic, just like in any situation like that, but I was so proud of how maturely she handled it all. I’ve told her for years that she would make a good medical professional for her ability to tolerate pain and blood and needles. I stand by that claim.

Now all that’s left is a lumpy, crooked scar. We are looking into plastic surgery options, but I’m not sure if those will be doable until she is older. For now, she has a little reminder of her fall on her face, a reminder to me every time I look at her of how fragile we are, how I need to enjoy each moment, how things could have been so much worse. What has become a part of her has become a part of us all. Scars remind of past hurts, of lessons learned, and I think they can be very good things.

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Markus – 2 3/4

Markus, at 2 years and 9 months, you:

  • Are a vibrant story-teller. I don’t know if you picked up on that from your sister or if you both just have a gift with words, but you can weave a very funny/spooky/sad tale with ease. I love eavesdropping on your creative play.
  • Are obsessed with cars, swords, trucks, tools, super heros, anything manly. You have the same access to Anja’s toys that she did and are still known to rock some Mardi Gras beads, but you always turn a stick into a weapon or a piece of cracker into a “hopcopper” (helicopter). So interesting how God weaves those little things into your being while in the womb.
  • Have been going through a hitting and name-calling phase recently. Some of your boyish aggression comes out not in play but in interactions with us, and we’re not okay with that. We try to be consistent in our discipline and our example, but we know we don’t parent perfectly. We and you will keep trying, okay?
  • Often insist that you are bigger than me or Daddy. Um, okay. But keep in mind that you are almost three and just now fitting into 2T pants. That said, I love love love your chubby little thighs and soft, meaty hands and bulbous cheeks. I hope you keep them all through your threes, because without them you will look way too grown up.
  • Are still a picky eater. Today you ate tomatoes off your pizza, but that is rare. You also don’t like potatoes in any form but a french fry (and even those are sometimes rejected). You refuse most things green except broccoli, and you gravitate toward bread and sweets (I blame myself for eating too much of those while you were in utero). But we keep giving you new foods, and you keep saying “icky” but eventually trying them. Someday we hope your palate will adjust. Because being a picky adult is far, far less acceptable/cute than being a picky kid!
  • Are very kissy. We aren’t much into kissing in our family (other than Daddy and I to each other), but you are dead set on changing that! And who knows, maybe you will! Haha!
  • Don’t understand much about death, but whenever Anja is doing something that might get her hurt, you warn her, “Anja, don’t do that, or you will DIE IN JESUS.”
  • Have recently informed us that you “like big ladies.” This came after a conversation about boobies, during which you asked me “Why are you not fat, Mama?” (Meaning, why don’t you have big boobies.) Oh, the conversations I did NOT expect to have with a 2-yr-old!
  • Are quite picky about your clothing. I will put a shirt on you only to have you start trying to rip it off and asking for a different one. When I have had you with me in the store to get you a pair of pants or something, you definitely have an opinion. Again, not what I would have expected from you, especially when Anja still lets me pick her outfits without a fuss (most days).
  • Love riding your bike. You received it just 3 months ago, but your Strider bike has had many trips around the neighborhood. And you’re learning balance on it, too! I wouldn’t doubt it if you and Anja end up like me and my little brother, learning to ride bikes without training wheels the same summer.
  • Are still short for your age. Almost all your friends have passed you in height. No matter. 🙂
  • Are enthusiastic. You start talking about something and your exuberance just bubbles over. I think that’s typical of two-year-olds, but I love it just the same.

Markus, you are a joy of a boy! We love your energy, your fierce love, and your too-big words. Thanks to God for giving us you!

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