Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Annie; The Bearer of Good News

nycteris night: hey chali, we're going back to school on tuesday, right?
chalicehoward: i think its monday
chalicehoward: am i wrong?
nycteris night: well, i was just asking
nycteris night: becauuuuse
nycteris night: mr. steve called and said he changed it to tuesday!!!!!
chalicehoward: !!!!booh-ya!!!!
chalicehoward: man i'm happppppy
nycteris night: good, yes?
chalicehoward: !!!!! yes yes yes !!!!!

this is the height of happy!! (yes, i hate school just that much)

"happiness is holding a flower in each hand"

this is the day after grandipop took us to Toby's to see "Mame"..which was Tuesday night. I think Aida still tops my charts. instead of leaving first thing the next morning, grandipop offered to take us around in d.c. for a couple hours the next morning to see the botanic gardens. there was an exhibit there where all the major landmarks of washington d.c. were made of plants (all mini ofcourse); the washington monument, the lincoln memorial, the capitol, the smithsonian--pretty darn neat. each one looked like it took a life time to make. so the "three little ones" went with grandipop and lowen stayed and studied at 9501. also on our list of places we visited were the american indian museum and the national geographic museum which had a napolean bonoparte exhibit (they had his pajamas on display--with a red capital "N" monogrammed onto it. thought that was pretty funny.)
grandimary, grandipop and 1\2 the gang.
the capital made all of plants. very very intricate details going on.
this was a pit stop for the amazing race. do we look like amazing racers??
the lincoln memorial made of entirely of plants--bet you've never seen that before (!!)
this flower is called "bird of paradise"-- i get it.

stage one

stage two
pax sufferred no major injuries. i think he was actually laughing. (we were on our way to the botanic gardens)

my winter coat was feeling very burdensome in this humid jungle. chali said there were monkeys. i did not see any monkeys. just lots and lots of green.

Monday, December 26, 2005

huntington christmas time

me and chalice trying out annie's new camera. the screen flips around so you can see it. no more cutting your friend's head out of the picture. i'm trying to get chalice to take the turkey. it was getting very heavy very fast. air guns. good for boys. good for anybody who likes hitting people with a big blasts of air.
this photo was taken by annie and annie's camera.

yes, i am blasting myself with the air gun. it's fun-er than it looks--notice the smile on my face. haha..

chal got the "cambridge league" hoodie from me. i think our whole family should get them. and then take a team picture with them. when brae&sienna get back ofcourse.

pax working on his (new) zip zaps--i think this was taken about one minute after he opened them.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

cracks me up every time

mom: "they must have been thinking of harriet leap."

Saturday, December 24, 2005

faces on the eve

linnea with (or without) the chicken pox. (she looks the same.)

chal and me after the xmas eve service.
(which means it's christmas eve night!)

grendel's wrapping paper fettish.

sienna & brae,


we miss you girls tonight.

--and all the time.


Friday, December 23, 2005

it's a wonderful

Dear George--
Remember no man is a failure who has friends.
Thanks for the wings!
Love Clarence

it's christmas eve eve and i just finished watching this with my papa. it gets better with every year. topped it off by watching the end of the muppet christmas carol. got reminded of all those funny little muppet people. the little bunny who always was getting hit in the head. the yellow one with no eyes but has glasses anyway. the funny little rats who work for mr. scrooge. good songs too! -- "it's true wherever you find love, it feels like christmas!"
posted by kyrie

it feels like christmas

she's a winner.

popsicle frames make the best ornaments! i think the bluriness kind of adds to the warm effect. eh?

philip and elizabeth

Thursday, December 22, 2005


sienna sent me this story of this little girl. i didn't write it. Angela Hess, sienna's former room mate, did. i like the simplicity and power of this article. you should really read it. even if you don't feel like staring at the computer screen for however long it takes to get through it. i didn't feel like reading it ither. then i got past the first sentence--i was hooked. i trust you shall be too.

I wish I could’ve given her a dollar.

I wish I’d known her, and I wish she’d asked me. I don’t know what she needed a dollar for, but I would’ve given her one.

Then again, maybe it’s not really about a dollar. Maybe it’s about other things I want her to have. Like childhood and love. Or a life without fear.

Nearly three months ago, ten-year-old Sia stole 50 Liberian dollars—less than one US dollar. She took the money from her stepmother, who she lived with. Her birth mother had abandoned her years ago, and her father was in jail.

Sia’s stepmother decided to punish the little girl in a way she’d never forget. She poured kerosene all over Sia’s hands, and then she forced them into a blazing fire. She held them there for about five minutes—until parts of Sia’s fingers were gone and her palms were covered with third degree burns.

She held them there until much more than Sia’s hands were damaged.

The little girl arrived at the Mercy Ship about two months after she’d been burned. A doctor from a Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Belgium hospital in Gbarnga, Liberia—about three hours’ drive from Monrovia—brought Sia and her grandmother to the ship. Sia had been in the MSF hospital for two months, but her doctors there could do nothing more. She needed major surgery to graft skin onto her palms. So the doctor from MSF drove Sia to the Mercy Ship, hoping that Dr. Tertius Venter, a South African surgeon with years of experience treating burns, could help.

By the time she reached the ship, Sia was terrified. She knew she was at another hospital. They’d cared for her well at MSF, but to Sia, “hospital” was a place where she’d had her dressings changed and, over and over, seen her gruesome hands. “Hospital” was synonymous with pain and trauma.

On the ship’s ward, Sia cowered defensively in the corner, refusing to let any of the doctors and nurses approach her. She wouldn’t let them get near her hands. Gone, along with the skin on her hands, was her trust in the people who promised to care for her.

She wouldn’t let down her guard. The medical staff called in an anaesthetist to put Sia to sleep so they could take a look at the burns. Just hours after she arrived at the ship, Dr. Venter scheduled her for a skin graft, a procedure that would move skin from her thigh to her hands.

The next day, I visited Sia on the ward. She sat in bed #31, staring up at a television several feet away. She didn’t seem terrified anymore; she wasn’t hiding. But she was quiet and guarded. She should’ve been a carefree ten-year-old, but she wasn’t.

All because of a dollar.

I talked to her, but she was distracted—maybe by the TV, maybe by knowing she’d have surgery the next day. We had a hard time understanding each other; while we both spoke English, it was definitely not the same English. Sometimes she responded to what I said, and other times she didn’t. She seemed to understand, though, when I asked her if we could be friends. And she told me we could.

I went back to visit my new friend the next night. One of the nurses told me that Sia would spend a few weeks recovering on the ward. The little girl sat in her bed, watching the same movie she’d seen the day before. She looked worn out, partly because she’d been under general anaesthesia for the third time in three days.

Through a translator, this time, I asked Sia if I could bring her anything. She asked for a balloon. I told her I’d see what I could do.

Two days later, I found her on the ship’s aft deck, getting some fresh air with a nurse and a few other patients. Four boys introduced themselves to me; three of them were named Junior. They were talkative, energetic, and friendly. In sharp contrast, Sia was reserved. The other kids hung on monkey bars and jumped rope; but her bandaged hands, looking like small white boxing gloves, and her taped-up leg kept her from joining in. My heart sunk as I scanned my surroundings, suddenly aware of how many things Sia couldn’t do.

I didn’t see her for the next few days, but Sia was changing. When I visited again, she almost smiled when she saw me. I pulled up a chair next to the swing she was sitting on. This time, I had a balloon with me. “Look what I brought you!” I said. “A balloon,” she responded, with quiet excitement. She took it from my hand and put it on her lap. We sat for a while, watching the other kids play basketball. I asked her if she wanted me to blow up the balloon so we could play with it. “No,” she answered. “I’m taking it to my brother.”

I tried my best to hide my shock. How was it possible that someone who had been shown such hatred could be so unselfish? She could’ve been thinking, “I deserve to have this thing,” but instead she thought about giving?

She kept the yellow balloon on her lap as I pushed her on the swing. I jumped out in front of the swing and flew through the air, pretending that she’d given me a powerful kick with those tiny little legs. And then the best thing happened: she laughed.

It wasn’t a belly laugh, by any means. And it wasn’t a laugh that made me think I was funny. It was a laugh that proved that this little girl was becoming a kid again, that she was coming back to life.

Just a few days later, I watched Sia and her grandmother walk down the ship’s gangway. Sia wore a purple dress and carried a small puppet in her still-bandaged hands.

Someday she’ll be able to use it.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

always a day away

"Finish each day and be done with it.
You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

bits of life

twinkle lights! tiny bulbs that bring much happiness.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

the girl is gorgeous


we might have lost both games but i still had fun with the whole experience. not everyday you get to scream out people's names like that. the girls..did not do so good, score wise. but hey! what does a score matter if your having fun!? right? the boys were quite good i thought. they were neck and neck the entire game. quite exciting for me to see our little school holding it's own. it was only in the last quarter SCS got substantially ahead of us. i forget what the final score was.

Break a fear-of-man problem by aggressively loving people.

sorry sienna

chalice is doing another renovation on your room. and this time the bed frame must go and all the sienna-ness that goes with it. strange seeing this well-known bed frame outside in the elements; sitting on the grass , with nothing over it but the great big sky. do you realize it's the last remnant of the two bunk beds?

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

new found joy

i love scrapbooking. i have this new dance scrapbook and i could just spend hours and hours and hours arranging and rearranging the pages before come up with a good layout, its some kind of stress relieving therapy for me, i love it love it!!...never has the creative memories catalogue excited me so much, thats kinda scary, eh?...i did'nt think i was that kind of cheesy scrapbooker but sure enough...dang! (i still make it cool though)

she's my favorite (still)

sienna, this is stef after she won her first individual challenge.!! doesn't it seem wierd that that just happened? she actually cried. i was very satisfied with that. she made it all the way to the final two! dosen't that just make you very happy to think of?? she didn't win however (why? heaven knows!!) but was beat by Danny who pretty much won because she was nice to everyone. not because she played like a champ (example: stef) .

i actually did like Danni. until she beat stef. then i didn't like her so much.

posted by kyrie