Monday, June 21, 2010

Hey Daddy, this blog's for you!

There are lots of reasons why I love my Daddy.  He took me on my first backpacking trip when I was nine.  It took us all day to hike in two miles before we set up camp.  The next day I decided I didn't want to pack up and hike any further, so we stayed at camp and played cards for two days before our long hike back to the car.

Around that same time, Daddy agreed to coach mine and Jes's softball team.  I know coaching a team is a normal thing for a daddy to do, but my Daddy HATES hot weather.  Being outside all summer in 95+ temperatures listening to 12 girls chanting "I said a boom-chicka-boom, I said a boom-chicka-rocka-chicka-rocka-chicka-boom" for 2 hours doesn't make the hot weather any cooler.  The situation may've been more bearable if we won.  We didn't.  We lost.  A lot.
Then there was the swim meet in El Paso.  The meet happened to fall on Father's Day that year.  We celebrated with a relay race.  Each club formed a relay team: 2 swimmers, 2 fathers.  My Daddy hates the water almost as much as he hates hot weather.  Somehow he got roped into being one of the "fathers" for our team.  It was a very brave thing for him to do.  Unfortunately, bravery doesn't make you buoyant.  He managed to flounder his way out of the deep end and into shallow water.  It wasn't pretty, but it sure was a valiant declaration of team spirit.

I could tell lots more stories about how awesome my Daddy is, like how he let me skip school one day so we could ride a motorcycle to Lubbock to eat lunch with my grandma, or how he didn't yell when I ran my mom's Volvo into the menu board in the drive-thru lane the first time I drove to church, but I don't want to brag too much.

So, let me just give you two more reasons why I love my Daddy:  One, and I can't say too much about this without spontaneously combusting into uncontrollable tears, my Daddy has always supported me... no matter what.  He supported me in sports, in school, and in my most recent decision to move thousands of miles across an ocean to Ireland.  Two, he loves my dog, even when she's mostly monster, and that's not always easy.  And oh yeah, he's pretty funny too!

Happy Daddy's Day, Daddy!  I love you!!!--MEO

Monday, June 14, 2010

Mooly v. The Scorpion: An Epic Tale of Courage and Total Annihilation

Here's the deal folks, we all know my mom, Jo, tends to slightly exaggerate the facts.  If she were telling this story, I'd come off as unnecessarily stupid and she would undoubtedly be the witty heroine.  I want you to get the REAL story, exactly as it happened, so I'm taking over and preaching the truth!

It happened the other night, during the 4th quarter of game 4 of the NBA finals.  I was laying peacefully by the couch.  Jo was petting me.  Mooly was in high spirits because Boston was winning.  Something caught my eye in the shadows of the kitchen.  I ignored it at first, but then it mysteriously scurried deeper into the darkness.  I'd never seen anything move like that before.  What was it?  Curiosity got the better of me, I got up to investigate.

I've played with my fair share of bugs during my 3 1/2 years of canine bliss.  I even tried to eat a poisonous frog one time.  But I've never seen anything as freaky as this creature.  It had a long, skinny body like a worm but feet like a bug.  The strangest part, though, was its tail.  It curved up over its back and was sharp at the tip.  Why wasn't it wagging?  Why have a tail if you're not gonna wag it?  I soon found out there are meaner things to do with a tail.

Man, this thing was quick!  It stayed one move ahead of my paw.  I faked right and the stupid thing fell for it.  I slammed my paw down quickly, pinning the creature to the floor.  I'd won!  Suddenly, a stinging pain shot through my paw and up my leg.  I looked down in horror.  That son of a bug had its tail jammed into the top of my paw.  I recoiled in pain and it scurried across the floor toward Jo and Mooly on the couch.

Jo shot up.  "Moo, I think that's a scorpion!", she yelled.  Mooly jumped up, searching for a weapon.  She handed her orange Birki to Jo, screaming, "Kill it!"  I knew I could count on Jo.  She would kill the scorpion and avenge my pain.  I watched in horror as Jo cowered on the coach.  "I can't kill it!  You do it!"  She said desperately, handing the shoe back to Mooly.  In a moment of valiant bravery, Mooly shoved Jo out of the way.  Standing on the couch, she towered over the scorpion.  SMACK!!!  She brought the birki down hard.  The first hit was a miss.  But the scorpion had no time to react before the shoe came down again.  Mooly didn't miss again.  She killed that scorpion dead.  She killed it five more times before sinking back onto the couch.

That's when I started feeling woozy.  I was holding my paw up by my chest.  It stung like fire rising up my leg.  Jo looked at me with fear in her eyes.  "I think it stung Dakota," she said.  The next few minutes were a blur.  I remember Jo looking in my eyes and at my paw.  Then she was talking to someone on the phone.  Then she and Mooly made me drink some nasty pink water called Benadryl.  The fire was cooling down.  I was getting drowsy...

The next day, I was back to normal.  My paw was healed and the drugs had worn off.  I'll be a bit more careful from now on, no more playing with things that have tails that don't wag!  The moral of the story:  Mooly was a hero and Jo was a big fat pansy!

Note: even though she missed the end of the game, Mooly was very, very happy because the Celtics beat the Lakers, tying up the series at 2 games each!  Mooly loves the playoffs!!!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The good race.

I ran tonight.  I hate running.  Just the thought of running makes me feel like this...

But sometimes I make myself run just to remind myself that I can.  I usually start off fairly confident.  But then I look at my watch and see that it's only been 2 minutes.  My legs are already tired.  The cramp in my side hurts when I breathe.  That's when the battle begins.  I tell myself, "Just stop running.  Walk instead.  You weren't built for this."  Tonight I didn't listen.  I welcomed the burning lungs and the heavy legs.  I kept running.  And I started praying.

I prayed for perseverance.  I prayed for stamina.  I prayed for determination.

Almost 2 years ago I met Scott and Denise and joined their race on a road bound for Dublin.  I started off confident.  But now, 2 years later,  my legs are getting tired.  My heart is heavy.  Others have joined the team.  They've passed me.  They're getting closer to the finish line.  And though I can hear them cheering me on, encouraging me to stay strong, it's hard to watch them pull further ahead.  I hate being left behind.

But it doesn't matter.  I accept the challenge to keep running.  And I will keep praying... for perseverance, for stamina, for determination.  And in the end, I, like Paul, will say, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith!"

And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith... so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. --Hebrews 12:1-3

Friday, June 4, 2010

There's a first time for everything.

I have the best sister EVER!!!  Actually, I have the TWO best sisters ever, but one of them is hundreds of miles away playing counselor at Camp Blue Haven all summer (Hi, Amos) so that leaves me with just ONE sister for the time being.

Yesterday, Jes took me to get my very first pedicure in my entire life.  I will admit that I was a bit nervous and not entirely sure that I wanted to go, but she is always talking about how wonderful they are so I figured it couldn't be all that bad.  And let me tell you, it was most definitely all that GOOD!!!

It was a little weird at first because I didn't know any of the pedicure etiquette.  Do you shave your legs before you go?  Is it okay to laugh when they tickle your feet?  Can you keep the funny flip-flops?  Luckily, I had Jes, who is very experienced in the field of getting pedicures, to answer all my questions.

I went Plain Jane with a French tips (all the colors clashed with my Chacos).  But Jes got funky with hot pink and flowers.  Yea for pretty feet!

Today was another first.  Today was the first time Dakota joined me for a bike ride.  It was a little sketchy at first.  I was afraid she was going to run in front of my bike and make me flip over the handle bars or jerk to the side and bring me crashing down with her.  Either way, I would end up bleeding and she would end up standing there looking innocent and confused.  But no worries!  She figured things out quickly and there was no flipping, jerking, or bleeding...

We rode around the neighborhood for about 10 minutes.  By the end of our lesson she was off-leash and staying out of the way.  Not to shabby for the first time out.  She was so exhausted by the time we got back to the house that she could barely even sit with her eyes open.  She laid around panting for a solid 20 minutes, slobbering all over the floor and being very dramatic.

I think it's safe to say I've found a new way to wear the monster out!