Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Ties to old family

Jack and I had a wonderful experience this weekend that has caused these images of his family members to float about in my consciousness all week. We were able to go to the Mesa temple and seal together his grandparents and great grandparents. All of whom have passed on since before Jack and I were married. I just have to show you their pictures and share with you their wonderful stories!
The second picture from the top is a picture of Jack's great grandparents: Stella Mae and Aaron Wesley. After noticing his fantastic ears, you will love knowing that love really is blind. Together they had twelve children. Jack and I have their small double iron bed, and bask in the knowledge that there were good times in that bed. To quote Jack's now deceased father, "What do you think people did before television?". The first picture of the series is one taken at Great Grandpa Fleming's funeral in 1970, with Stella Mae flanked by all 12 of her beautiful children. I can't doubt her creativity, for they have the names Jack (originally Jabel) Rastee, Doc (not short for doctor, by the way), John, Ruble, Vernon, W.D. (initials not short for anything), Eloise, Louise, Effie, and Mark. I just love that picture of Stella Mae and Aaron Wesley. Stella has a little elfish look of mischievousness that I adore.
The two bottom pictures are of Jack Fleming in the navy during World War II (he's the handsome character on the far left, first row), and then underneath him his bride Mary. I cannot tell you how wonderful it is that Jack not only has his grandfather's namesake, but his dashing good looks! About the only difference that I can see is that Jack Sr. has bright blue eyes and my Jack has dark brown ones. When little Max gets a haircut, he looks so much like Jack Fleming Sr. in his later years. I have to tell you that when we had Jack and Mary sealed to each other, then their son (Jack's uncle) Gary sealed to them, I was overcome with emotion. You see, when Gary was 17, he was hit by a car and killed walking home, and the family never quite recovered fully. I cannot even fathom that kind of loss, and I felt their joy so fully that I will never forget it.
I sometimes wish that I had pictures and stories for all of the names that I've done in the temple. We've all lived and loved and cried and laughed, and the most important thing to us after it all is our family. We don't get to choose our family members, but I swear if I had a lineup of adorable little boys to choose from, I'd still choose my special Max!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Let it Melt, Let it Melt, Let it Melt. . .

I love snow . . . right when it is falling and soft and flaky and white and pristine. New Year's week was beautiful. When you have nowhere to go and nothing to do but curl up by the wood stove and watch movies or make food. Luxury, by the way, when you have power in the snow :) Playing in it is fun, although snow angels are a little tricky when you are about six months pregnant. I decided to forgo the pleasure. Max's favorite snow trick is to throw himself head first into a bank and then laugh his head off. Our dog Bruce loves to play in it. I swear that our Mississippi born canine has some serious sled dog blood in him. We make snowballs and he catches them in mid-air. Here are some beautiful pictures of post snow fun in Strawberry a couple of weeks ago.
Now here is the reality. Snow is nasty, cold, and turns into icy cement after a couple of days. Jack's bug looks really cute all snow covered, then you realize that you have to dig it out of the driveway to get to work. Now all of the snow on the roads is brown and slush/ice. I've busted my butt on the ice covered parking lot at church. I'm watching stupid people from Phoenix sledding on the remnants of snow in front of WalMart. I'm tired of scraping my windshield every morning to get to work. Too Much Information Alert: my pregnant chest is aching from the chill air and I feel like a walrus disguised as an Eskimo when I dress for church. Think retro leggings with fluffy knee high socks and snow boots--all encasing swollen legs and ankles.
The sun has done an admirable job of melting a lot of it. I can actually see dried grass in patches, when it's not turned into mud, and the deadly four foot long icicles on my front porch have all gone. Hallelujah! The walkways and parking lot at school are less treacherous, and I've substituted my snow boots with sensible Velcro Mary Janes. How very stylish of me! I'm doing a little snow-melt dance here in the mountains (carefully, so as not to disturb my precarious balance), and it's slowly working. And I'm smiling, grinning from ear to ear because the crazy child doing flips in my womb is Kizzie Elizabeth Fleming. A girl!!!!!! I gladly give up my sanity and ankles and comfortable nights for this sweet blessing. We have had her name handy since before Max was born, and I have a feeling that she will take after both of her namesakes: strong and most-likely sassy Southern women who make the best of rough situations. Both Kizzie Bond and Kizzie Fleming are smiling from the spirit world and can't wait for their great great great granddaughter to be born. Right now I'm 23 weeks along; Kizzie is about a pound and head to butt measuring about 8 inches. She kicks the daylights out of me about 6 to 7 times a day and probably enjoys listening to her active big brother drive me crazy. I promise to allow someone besides Max take pictures of my prego belly and I will post them soon.
Love you all.