Wednesday, July 8, 2009

By George, I Think She's Got It!!

Izzy's been getting in a little spoon-practice lately, but I didn't have very high hopes for success a few nights ago when we were having pizza and peas for dinner (pizza because that's what sounded good...and peas because they made me feel better about serving pizza.)

Now peas are tough to wrangle no matter what your experience level with eating utensils. Admit it, we've all used our fingers to push a pea or two onto the spoon.

Or maybe that's just me.

But Tootles surprised us all, and she did remarkably well enjoying her little round veggies at dinner that night.

There was the occasional escapee...

...but most of the peas made it right from her spoon to her tummy.

Once the pea-field became a bit more sparse, she started to get frustrated, though, and she returned to her pincer-grasp ways.

As pleased as Izzy was with her new-found eating skills...

...she was equally unhappy with her decision to get into the swimming pool with her clothes on yesterday.

I'm not sure the feeling of a heavy, dripping wet dress is exactly what she was going for.

This is totally unrelated, but these little tidbits are too funny not to share. I think I've mentioned our rotating church schedule of Josh runs sound/I take care of the little ones and then I play keys/Josh takes a turn with the kids. Well every once in a while, the schedule gets a bit jumbled, and we end up both responsible for our separate duties on the same day. That was the case a couple of Sundays ago. But it doesn't just affect Sunday also determines the plan on the prior Tuesday, because that's when the worship band has practice.

On this particular Tuesday, we loaded everybody up in the car and headed to the church so that Josh could twirl the buttons and knobs on the soundboard (I'm sure there's a much more technical way to explain what he does, but that's definitely not my department) and I could practice with the band for the following Sunday morning service. For the first hour-and-a-half, the kids were fantastic! They entertained themselves by running around the empty sanctuary and playing their various and sundry air-instruments. But by the time it hit their usual nighty-night time, they were showing signs of fading. Quickly.

The funniest part of that picture (thanks to my camera phone) is that Jack is playing around with the cords (ok, that part's not so funny), and Abby's just about passed out because she's so ready to hit the hay. And they're laying on a couple of chairs that Josh turned over and laid on the stairs to try to keep Isabel off the stage.

Izzy, on the other hand, wasn't quite so content to wait patiently for practice to wrap up. She kept trying to get to me to be cuddled (hence the chair arrangement), but I obviously couldn't hold her when I was playing the keyboard...and Josh couldn't do much with her because he was busy working on the worship schedule for the service. Soooo...I put my thinking cap on and came up with this:

I dashed out to the car, grabbed the Ergo baby carrier, tossed her in, and played away. It worked beautifully!! I was able to run the whole set, and she was able to get the snuggles she so desperately needed in her sleepy state. Here was the view from my vantage point:

Wonderfully cute, yet pitiful at the same time!

This story isn't nearly as dramatic as the events from this past Sunday, though. I was on the schedule to play again, so as soon as the speaker started wrapping up, the band headed towards the stage. Abby had been laying in my lap during the message, so I whispered to her to stay right there, and I would be right back. I walked toward the stage, up the stairs, and over to the keyboard. It was right about that time that one of the guitarists urgently whispered "Allison! Allison!". Of course I looked at him to see what was wrong, and he started frantically pointing behind me.

There. Stood. Abigail.

I was supposed to start the song in about 30 seconds...alone...just me...nobody to cover it up if I didn't start on time. So in my panicked state, I pulled her over to the keyboard with me and whispered for her to sit right beside me during the song.

I thought the crisis was somewhat averted until I looked down a few measures into the song, and I could see that she was crying. I whispered for her to look at me, and when I saw the tears streaming down her face, my heart just broke for her. It was at that moment that I felt myself caught between two priorities that are very important to me, but I chose the one that means the absolute most. I told Abby to stand up beside me, and I ended up playing the rest of the song one-handed while I held her against me with my other hand. It was the best I could do under the circumstances.

Abby's been watching me play at church for years now, so I'm not sure exactly what possessed her to follow me up onto the stage that day, but it definitely made for some extra excitement. It wasn't so funny at that moment, but by the time the service was over, Josh and I were cracking up at the presence of my unexpected "musician's assistant". I checked the church's website to see if you could download the service, but I don't think they post videos anymore...just audio.

I don't think Abby will try that one again. I'm pretty sure she was wishing she had thought two seconds about what she was about to do before she got herself caught onstage in the middle of the closing song set. Her face was the picture of panic.

Of course, I'm sure mine was, too.

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