Ok, so I adore Irish folk music, and when I read the lyrics to this song, I thought PERFECT! A sailor named William! then I heard the drowning part...no thanks! But I still like the song. So here ya go! And I must say...my husband is looking quite dashing in this photo, is he not? I admit, It looks a mite posed, but I can assure you it's not! I zoomed in and snapped it right as the ship was pulling out of port. After cropping out some guys head, it turned out quite nicely.
Written by The Carter Family
A Sailor's life is a merry life He robs young girls of their heart's delight Leaving them alone to weep and mourn They never know when he'll return
Of four and twenty all in a row My true love makes the finest show He's proper tall, genteel with all If I can't have him I'll have none at all
My father built me a bonny boat That on the ocean I might float And every queen ship that we passed by I'd there inquire for my sailor boy
She had not sailed long upon the deep When a queen ship she chanced to meet You sailors all please tell me true Does my sweet William sail among your crew?
Oh no fair maiden he's not here For he's been drowned we greatly fear On yon green island as we passed by There we lost sight upon your sailor boy
She wrung her hands, she tore her hair She was a maid in great despair Her little boat on the rock she did run Saying how shall I live now that my William is gone?
A sailor's life is a merry life He robs young girls of their heart's delight Leaving them behind to weep and mourn They never know when he'll return
My little shrimp is more like it! This was the scene last night during Isabella's first bath without a prop or an infant tub! This new milestone is greeted with bittersweet emotions from me. I sat watching her as she splashed around gleefully and ate bubbles in my mom and dad's enormous claw-foot tub, A wriggling little pink cheeked shrimp, in a gigantic white boat. A far cry from the screaming, red faced, newborn I bathed for the first time about 8 1/2 months ago. While I am always pleased to see my little darling learning new tricks, and reaching new milestones, the mother in me can't help but long to stop the clock for a while. I want to make sure I savor every moment of those slobbery open-mouthed kisses, every time she learns a new word, and yes, even each little, back-arching temper tantrum where she screams the two words she knows best, "MA-MA! MA-MA!" ( a prelude of the teenage years perhaps? )
When I was still expecting, Grandfathers and Grandmothers would always stop my husband and me and tell us to make sure we savored every moment, that the time would go by so fast we would hardly realize it was gone. VERY pregnant, and as any woman who has ever been 9 1/2 months along knows, VERY impatient, I would accept these notions graciously, but in the back of my mind my thoughts would be so naive. Now that she's actually here it seems like the days fly by with reckless abandon, and I'm left standing here staring confused and bewildered at the baby clothes in my hand that JUST fit two weeks ago!
My vow is that I will always take the time to enjoy every toothy, eye twinkling smile, every kiss, every sleepy sigh and every time those little arms reach out for me, no matter how busy, how stressed or how annoyed I may be at the time, because I know that in 16 years that will feel like tomorrow, I will be showing these very same bath tub pictures, to her first date.
Can you imagine waking up to this every morning? Neither can I! and apparently Tyler is none too keen on it himself. I'll try and describe for you some of his surroundings in the ship. The whole ship, inside and out is painted this lovely shade of gray that you see here in the picture. I must say, not very Feng Shui. The showers, from what he tells me are about the size of a port-a-john, in which after you shower, he has described the feeling of being covered by a film, that I can only conclude must be from all of the chemicals used to "soften" the sea water. Gross. Where they eat is basically like a school lunch room, complete with the smell! but it's extremely small and from what I could tell only holds about 100 sailors at a time. You climb these weird steel ladders to go from level to level in the ship and you could probably find Tyler's DNA on every landing of these stairs with all of the times he has told me of bumping his head. And lastly, his bed, or rather, his "rack" as they all it. Imagine two ironing boards put together, and that is his rack. They fold out from the wall and come complete with a mesh drape to keep you from falling out of your bed during rough waters. Gives a new meaning to the term "tossing and turning" huh?
I am so grateful for what they sacrifice for their country!
He wrote me today and sent a few pictures of what it looks like from his end of the world, and it basically looked like the end of the world. I put this one up because I liked the flag blowing in the wind. He's very homesick, poor guy, and he misses "his girls" but other than that he's doing well. He told me a little something that made my heart hurt though...he was thanking me for sending him packages filled with goodies, and he said some sailors never get a scrap of mail for the whole 6-8 months they are out! poor little sailors! I'm on a mission now, to send packages to the package-less. I've even recruited the help of my sister and mom and hopefully some ladies from the Quilt shop where mom works. Don't you worry lonely, mail-less sailors! these good ol' southern women will take care of you!
There's nothing more special than a girl on her Grand daddy's shoulders. It's a symbol, I think, of how there's not much a Grand daddy won't do for his grand daughter. Just ask my dad! a father of three girls, and a grand father of three grand girls, he pretty much wrote the book on devotion.
I remember my Papa would be sitting in his big brown chair, as comfy as you please...and I would come up to him and say, "Papa PLEASE will you just come outside and push me in the swing one more time?" quick as a whip! those cowboy boots would fold that footrest close, and up he would get, his bones and his chair cracking and groaning in protest, to go outside and push me in that swing he had made himself. I also remember sitting on his bony old knee at the table and asking for Acorn squash, and once again, those signature cowboy boots would go a'shuffling around the kitchen to whip me up a squash, that of course, he had grown himself.
I cherish these memories, I don't have very many as we only got to visit so often, and I know this will also be the case for Isabella for a while until Tyler's career in the Navy is up. I'm trying to take as many pictures as possible, but the best pictures are the ones we store in our minds, with smells and sounds to go with them. I wonder what some of Isabella's memories of Grandaddy will be? will she remember the birds-eye view of the house as he walked her around and around on his shoulders until she wasn't fussy anymore? or will she remember sitting with him in his chair and playing with his face while he talks to her and sings her silly songs?
All I know is, whether they are Papa's or Grandaddy's the memories are very, very special.
Today was such a beautiful day that Lovie, Isabella, The Jasper and I decided to go on a walk in the park. We acquired one Hilary on the way, and then our little brood set out to enjoy the sunshine. One lap around the loop and the playground was just not to be avoided for miss Hilary any longer, we stopped to play and I'm so glad that we did! the girls had so much fun together. Hilary's little blond head was nothing but a blur as she darted from slide, to merry-go-round, to swings with excitement and enthusiasm only a 5 year old can show. Isabella was just as excited as Hilary with the new sensations the swinging gave her...when the wind would hit her face that red hair would just go a flyin' and she would gasp and smile the biggest smile, laugh her beautiful baby laugh and then do that high pitched squeal of pleasure babies do. It was like chocolate for the ears. All the while, I'm watching Hilary's tricks and pushing the baby's swing at the same time, while Lovie and a very tired Jasper sat in the grass and enjoyed the view. At one point, Hilary wanted to push Isabella's swing. I told her she was doing a good job and her response to me was, "This is what cousins are for!"
Dogs are so gross. I debated on whether or not to blog about this, but after seeing this picture, I can't resist. Tonight, during the last frenzied moments before Isabella's bath, I discarded a considerably full diaper in the nearest trash can. Oops! it was near my mom's black Lab, Jasper's Lair. Earlier in the evening Mom had left a whole bag of Malted Milk ball eggs on the counter, and Dad had left a big variety pack of pudding cups on the table. After her bath I went downstairs, and upon opening the Kitchen door I was greeted by a very guilty looking, and somewhat bloated Jasper. One glance at the floor and the scattered debree told the story.
First, he succumbed to the temptations of that poopy diaper. Then, I guess he needed something to cut the after taste, so he had a bag of malted milk ball eggs, and what are malted milk ball eggs without a few pudding cups? but of course! his appetite must have been whetted earlier in the afternoon when he enjoyed a couple of juicy apples under the kitchen table.
At 2:30 pm Hawaii time, Isabella and I began our long journey home. Fourteen hours, a few embarassing meltdowns and one spilled airplane meal later, we finally sat foot on Tennessee soil, and boy, did it feel nice. We stepped off the airplane and were immidiately greeted by a blast of gloriously cold, mountain air. Nothing has ever felt more invigorating to me!
Flying into Knoxville, with Isabella passed out in my arms, (funny, she waited until we were ALMOST home to fall asleep) an old man walking down the aisle stopped and handed me the blanket she had dropped, as he raised up he said, "Now wouldja take a lookit that?" I looked in the direction he was nodding, and outside my little shoe-box sized window were the most devestaingly beautiful mountains and rolling hills I had ever seen. The sun was shining on the Mountains brighter than ever, it was as if they were welcoming me home and saying, "Beat THAT tropical paradise!"
Funny, people wait their whole lives to go to Hawaii...and here I am, choking up flying into McGee Tyson.