Friday, June 10, 2011

Father's Day Month of June- Blog 2: Letters from Mom & Mimi

Ellie, this is your first picture with your Dad.
So Ellie Belle,

To continue celebrating Father's, let's talk about your Daddy (and you say Daddy in the sweetest way about a million times in a day either looking for your Dad if he is at work or wanting his attention when he is home).  He is hands down, the FUNNIEST person I know (and with the way you like to make people laugh, I think you are taking after him).  He is gentle, sweet, and kind (especially when he is with you).  You share his passion for the couch.  In fact, you love the exact cushion he favors and you lay on it in the same way that he does.  Even when you push your dad's buttons, I have never heard him raise his voice with you.  Rather, he will try anything to get you to smile (including letting you crawl up and down the stairs a million times as you practice). 
Playing with your Dad on the couch!
Your Dad was at every doctor's appointment leading up to your birth and slept in the recliner chair for four days in the hospital (as you were a c-section baby) after you were born so that he could get to you faster if you cried.  Your Dad would take every other night feeding after you came home.  And now that you are so mobile, he loves to roll balls to you on the floor.  I think he has high hopes for you to be in little league baseball!  And now that we joined the rec center, we are at the pool.  Your Dad enjoys seeing you be a natural fish in the water!
Heading to your Dad's baseball game for the first time!

But I already knew that your Dad was the perfect father before you born because he was amazing with Kyle.  I remember him holding Kyle so softly that Kyle felt at peace.  I always said that Kyle felt most comfortable in your Daddy's arms.  When Kyle died, your Dad's comfort, peace, and stability made it easier for me to live on (even in his deepest despair, your Dad's strength never ceases to amaze me).  
My boys...
Ellie at 1 year old, you have a silly sense of humor that you get from your Dad.  You try to make people laugh by sticking out your tongue, giving people your toys and snatching them back, and making hilarious noises.  The more people laugh, the more you do it.  And just like your Dad, you show affection to those you care most about.  My favorite is when you walk by your Dad and stop and kiss his knee and keep on going.
You were your Dad's best medicine after his shoulder surgery!

The things I love most about your Dad that I hope you inherit:
1.  His Humor
2.  His Loyalty
3.  His Honesty
4.  His Generosity
5.  His Love for His Family

I also love your Daddy because he gave me you and Kyle.
Our first family portrait (and Kyle's in it to as his picture is in my locket).
We really do have the best family Ellie and being at home with you and your Dad is my favorite place to be.

And now from your Mimi…

Good Morning Ellie Sunshine!

We are now officially into the beautiful and "warm" month of June!  This early morning I am sitting on our deck under the patio umbrella drinking my tea while blogging to you!  I will have another cup with Poppy when he wakes up.

This week in honor of Father's Day I would like to write a little bit about your daddy Ellie and also a follow up to your mommy's story about Poppy and his "critter friends."  So here goes.

Before I began writing my part of this week’s blog Ellie, I read what your mommy wrote first.  And I must say she wrote a beautiful tribute to your Dad!  Everything she said is so very true!  He is quite funny and even funnier when he laughs at his own jokes!  I remember a time while visiting your parents I was using their computer to write an e-mail.  All of a sudden the mouse to the computer started going hay-wire and the cursor was jumping all over the screen and no matter what buttons I hit, nothing would stop it!  Ellie, I thought I broke their computer.  And then all of a sudden from behind me I could hear (just barely) a whispered chuckle.  When I turned around your daddy was on his computer, and being the savvy technological brain person that he is, he had figured out a way to take control of the mouse attached to my computer!  And he was having quite a field day with it too Ellie, the whole while giggling away quite pleased with his sneaky take-over attack!  I must say that at first I was in shock, then when I realized I didn't break anything, I was in awe of his technology capabilities and soon I too laughed along with him.  Now when I visit and write my e-mails using their computer he finds it very amusing to secretly video tape me using the Doogie Houser theme song for background music and narrates his own humorous spin of a "Dear Diary" version to my lengthy writings!  He is pretty funny Ellie.  I can't help but laugh because when he laughs it is contagious!  And yes... I do think you have his personality as you can make me giggle too!  Your mommy also talked about your daddy being the perfect father before you were born.  Ellie, I can attest to that as I witnessed the love and devotion that your dad gave to your brother Kyle.  I remember a day while your daddy was holding Kyle in the NICU, and the nurse on duty had asked your daddy how much longer he would like to hold his son.  Your daddy's response to her broke my heart for he whispered "forever."  He so loved your brother Ellie and had so many hopeful wishes for him. He was gentle with Kyle and protective of him too.  Through all the difficulties, the quick moments of happiness, the many days of unknowing, and the times of sadness, your daddy's love and strength never wavered both for Kyle and your mommy.  He truly was their "rock” Ellie.  Now seeing your daddy with you, well that same love can be seen in his eyes all over again.  That love is within his whole being and it shall be forever.  When your parents brought you home from the hospital, your dad was right there to help your mommy in every way he could.  I was pretty impressed.  He took turns with your mom for the night feedings, he changed your soiled diapers, he rocked you when you cried and he was the only one of all of us that could swaddle you like a perfect mummy making you feel completely secure! 
Your Dad perfected that swaddle technique!

Now he plays ball with you, he swims with you, and he watches your favorite TV shows with you too!   And I can't wait till you are old enough to play a game of Fish or Old Maid with him.  You see Ellie; your daddy is quite competitive.  It will be interesting to see if your age along with your relationship of being his daughter softens this edgy trait of his.  I will tell you right now that my age and my being the Mother-in-law does not!   You would think that would give me an upper hand at intimidating him into playing a gentle card game of Uno.  NO SUCH DEAL!   I will tell you that we have a blast playing this game but your dad is brutal when the game gets down to one of us holding the "Uno" card and hopefully securing a win!  The first few times we played the "wins" were mine dubbing me "Queen of Uno", but your dad was determined to quickly seize that title turning it from "Queen to King."   And yes, I will admit that he has successfully transferred the title to himself the last few games.  So I guess I am going to have to change up my strategy a bit in reclaiming the "Queen of Uno Title" since your daddy shows no mercy for the "old lady" and "mother-in-law" tactic!  So the war continues........ 

Ellie, your daddy is a really good man and a wonderful father!  You sweet child are very blessed.  

Now for Poppy.

Your Poppy is truly a "one of a kind" man, Ellie.  And I mean that in the best possible way!  Right now I would like to share with you a humorous rodent story ... it is one of many that involve your Poppy.  But we have years to write about them and catch you up with his forever determination of conquering and eliminating those pesky little critters.

I would like to title this chapter  "The Rodentator"- Poppy vs. Chippy Chipmunk
 Meet Chippy...

Since your Poppy grew up in the city of Philadelphia with its hustle and bustle and high crime Ellie, moving to peaceful State College and its rural ethnicity seemed to be the perfect choice to raise a family.  So we chose a suitable lot on a quiet cul-de-sac with an open field across the street to build our home.  Since it was a high sloping lot, we built a raised ranch where the back of the house butts into the ground.  Because of that, we had to create a "stone wall" about 20 feet in front of our home, which gives our front-yard two levels.   The lower level is all grass and a half-moon hedge while the upper level is colorful flowers and bushes.  (By the way, those "stones" are more like massive boulders piled on top of each other!)  Since we built in the late fall, winter was upon us in no time.  So it wasn't until the spring when your Poppy noticed "one" imperfection in our yard.  While looking out the window one day and admiring the landscaping with its budding flowers and green sprouts, your Poppy noticed something.  It was little, brown, cocky, digging holes and playing hide and seek in and out of our stone wall!  I thought your Poppy was going to lose his mind!  Next thing I know he is yelling at the little creature to scat (who by the way is on the other side of the window and can't hear a word he is saying!) "City boy" Poppy all of a sudden became "Rural Hunter" Poppy!  Off he drove to Lowe's to buy an arsenal of "Rodent's Be Gone For Good" stuff!  Ellie, Poppy doesn't do anything in small quantities!  When I asked him what he bought, he said to come and see.  He had a store bag full of "stuff!"  The first thing he pulled out of his bag was a can of foam filler.  When I asked him what he was going to do with it, he said he was going to fill all the cracks and crevices in the stone wall.  And that is exactly what he did.  (The stone wall is probably 20 feet long and 6 feet high.)  He explained that the foam he was using would expand and seal all the openings so that Chippy Chipmunk would not be able to enter his chipmunk home anymore and have to move elsewhere!  There was only one slight glitch though.  Poppy didn't just spray a little bit into the cracks, Poppy sprayed and sprayed and sprayed!  Well, it didn't take long for the foam to set in.  (It also didn't take long for the foam to expand!)   Ellie, there was so much foam in the wall, it started oozing out of all the cracks, and I mean Oozing with a capital O!    It looked like the wall was being taken over by some horrific and ugly looking fungus!  I was mortified!  But your Poppy said not to worry... he would take care of that too!  And he did!  Out of his store bag, he pulled out a can of black spray paint and proceeded to spray the yellow and white oozing foam from one end of the stone wall to the other until his can was empty.  (Can I just say that Poppy would have made an awesome graffiti artist!)  My wall now became a colorful mess of grey, black, yellow and white!  Oh.... and it was "days" before that foam stopped expanding!  So our original stonewall became quite a site to see.  And you know what?  It didn't force Chippy Chipmunk to move either.  I think that marked the day the war was officially on between that little critter and your Poppy!  Because the next day Poppy pulled out of his store bag a half dozen rattraps, which he strategically placed all around the upper portion of our front yard.  And he made sure there was lots of yummy peanut butter attached to its snap catcher too!  When guests came to visit I just told them..."Don't ask."  Ellie, the story gets funnier because I am sure you can guess what happened.  Yup.  That "Mensa" chipmunk figured out a way to fill his belly with all the peanut butter and not set one trap off!  But the story isn't quite yet finished.  There was still one more "Rodent Ridder" in that Lowe's store-bag.  So out your Poppy goes again and pulls out of the bag these little what I would call 3 inch by 3 inch sticky pads.  He placed a slew of them all around the holes where Chippy dug, and there were lots of them!  I think their purpose was when a rodent skittered across one, it would stick to the pad and then you could dispose of the animal however you wished.  Hmmmmm..... To this day we all still ponder what happened to all of our sticky pads.  My guess is that Chippy Chipmunk is one up on your Poppy!  He probably had little chipmunk shoes made for himself and all his little friends!  So the war continues.....

So I guess Ellie the lesson to be learned here is that not all "wars" are hurtful.  Wars between friends and family can be fun, competitive and humorous.  You just need to know where the boundaries are.  Rules are made for guidance, but they certainly can be changed or even "bent" a bit as long as those participating in the activity are all in agreement.  In life you should have fun with, appreciate all, and enjoy the company of those around you!

Next week I think we should blog about the "Then Some" part of our June Month!  What do you think Kimberly?  Surprises are always the most fun!

Till then Ellie-bean,
Love Mimi


  1. Kim your blog on Justin made me cry and Mic yours made me laugh. Especially the part about Eddie deoes not do anything small. Does any Russell??????I really hope one day Ellie will appreciate these blogs because they do tell quite a story and I am so happy that you choose to share it with us. I love hearing the stories of Kyle and Ellie over and over. You need to write a book.

  2. I keep saying that to my mom too Jackie! She would definitely write a best seller! Thank you for the nice things that you said.