Thursday, March 29, 2012

Children of the Sabbath

Growing up, I remember sermons where we were led to feel guilty for doing anything but going to church on Sunday. Work and sports, especially, were not to be done on the Sabbath. Never mind that mom still didn’t get off the hook for cooking – or if we went out to eat, we might simultaneously judge the waitress for working but thank her for the juicy steak.

Of course, this points to several dilemmas with regard to the Sabbath, some of which date back thousands of years: What exactly is allowed on the Sabbath? Can we eat? Walk? Can donkeys be led out for water (Luke 13:15), or are they not to do any work at all (Deut. 5:14)? Can we pull our horse (or car) out of a ditch? Go shopping? Pull the weeds? Mow the grass? And of course, which day is the Sabbath? The Jew or Seventh-Day Adventist will say Saturday, while most other Christians say Sunday; however, the fact that the Western world predominately functions on a five-day work week (wherein many work on Saturday or Sunday and then take other days off throughout the week, even), further complicates the matter with regard to its original intent (especially since Genesis 2:2-3 says nothing about going to any kind of house of worship).

Honestly, I’m not quite interested in these questions at the moment, but a different one: namely, why is practicing Sabbath so hard? This notion of taking a break or rest from our regular routine of work is considered by many people—whether religious or nonreligious—to be extremely important for one’s health and overall quality of life. So why is it so hard to do implement or incorporate into one’s life?

This brings me back to the sermons. Not only did such sermons make me feel guilty for playing baseball or football on Sunday (never mind that baseball and football stars who were Christians were always the plenary speakers at our youth events), but one’s lack of practicing the Sabbath was always blamed on some (sinful) drive to find one’s identity in work, on greed for a bigger paycheck, on addiction to technology (TV, movies, music, internet, cell phone). Us adults have become too serious, the preacher says, too preoccupied with the ways of the world, the value system of secular liberalism. We need, instead, to become like little children who know how to enjoy life, play freely, be spontaneous, and rest quietly in the arms of Jesus.

Now it’s not that I don’t recognize elements of truth in the words I have inserted into the mouth of the preacher. I no doubt often base my identity and significance in working toward the next accolade (an award or publication) or waste too much time scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed. But I wonder if the difficulty of Sabbath is more primordial than this, more rooted in how we function as humans than some intentional desire to break the 4th commandment. Most of us sleep at night, and most of us plan vacations, so we obviously recognize the importance of rest.

Then it dawned on me as Amber was recounting a conversation with Emerson the other day. Emerson at three years old still has little sense of time (e.g., an hour, day, month, year don’t really mean anything to him), but he has a pretty good handle on the days of the week. Amber was giving a little quiz: “What happens on Sunday?” E: “We go to church!” “And on Monday?...” Emerson could make out his entire week: Monday and Wednesdays, he knows, he goes to Lydia’s house; Tuesday and Thursday Lydia comes to our house; Friday he’s home with mom; Sunday we go to church. And Saturday. . . a blank stare. Saturday’s a black hole for little E. How can anyone not grasp Saturday, the best day of the week?

Amber and I had this same conversation the night after I went to a parent orientation at Montessori where E will be going to school next year. In the morning, they kids are all in the same classroom with the same teacher, while in the afternoon they have “specials” – art, PE, music, etc. – with other teachers. For this reason, the presenter was emphasizing that for little kids it is often best just to do half days: “Parents really like specials,” she said, “Three year-olds don’t. They like the routine and consistency of the classroom.”

Routine. Consistency. The Mundane. We often rail against these things. We often say these are the things of the Establishment, the things that crush creativity and spontaneity. But for Emerson—or any three year-old—the lack of routine is the very reason Saturday is a black hole to
him. The reality is, while it is certainly true that children are far more imaginative, playful, spontaneous, and creative than adults (although whoever said they rest quietly hasn't been around many three year-olds), these things only reveal themselves within routine: wake up, wake up mom and dad, breakfast, play time, snack time, nap time, lunch time, library trip, park time, dinner time, see neighborhood kids outside time, pajamas and watch Curious George time, bed time. Saturday is an anomaly for a three year-old, a blip in the week when parents don’t stick to the routine.

The reality is we all like routine, whether we’re three or thirty. The habits and daily movements of our lives our not only ingrained on our bodies—whether it’s taking a shower, working X amount of hours, driving to the story, eating dinner at a certain time, etc.—but they’re ingrained into the very fabric of who we are as persons and shape the way we come to expect or anticipate the future. This is why adding or changing something into our weekly mix is so difficult. But the more substance and definition that change has, then the easier it is for it to become readily recognized and assimilated into our lives. If, for instance, Saturday was routinely something like: wake up, pancakes, go to the grocery store, nap time, lunch time, Dad does yard work, special family time, bed time—then perhaps Saturday wouldn’t be such a black hole for little E.

Which brings me back to the Sabbath. Regardless of whether its Saturday or Sunday (or whether Sabbath is something for every day), whether one condones sports on that day or doesn’t, whether one’s off day is Monday instead, or whether or not one’s Sabbath practice includes some religious function, the poetic rest of Sabbath is so difficult for us, I think, because it often so nebulous, so ill-defined, and thus, so difficult to place into our everyday lives as a ritual and rhythm. If Sabbath is simply defined by the “nots” (Do not work, do not play, do not. . . ), if it is thus defined as nothing, it means nothing. We must give Sabbath a name, a form, and shape if it is to have significance and meaning, like Adam expanding his world and giving significance to it through the naming of the animals (Gen. 2:19). As philosopher, Maurice Merleau-Ponty writes, “For the child the thing is not known until it is named, the name is the essence of the thing and resides in it on the same footing as its colour and its form.” We cannot know the Sabbath, let alone practice it, unless we know what it entails.

Now again, this could mean something different depending on one’s (non)religious background. Perhaps Sabbath entails practicing certain spiritual disciplines: prayer, meditation, silence, and so forth. Perhaps Sabbath simply means doing the things that bring refreshment, life, and energy, which could be anything from taking a walk at the park, having friends over, a long nap, reading a book, taking part in a hobby, or even doing yard work. However we describe it, Sabbath rest only comes when we can name what gives us rest and conscientiously incorporate that into our weekly (even daily) rhythms. To do so, however, Sabbath cannot be understood quite simply as a break from the routine—that leads to the view that we can simply fill up on rest (or spirituality or God) one day so we can do whatever we want the rest of the week, thus dualistically separating the practice from life and alienating rest/spirituality from the daily grind. Sabbath itself must have a routine, must have its own meaning (as must our weekly activities) so they can mutually inform and permeate each other with fruitful significance.

And now that that Eureka moment has passed. . . how do I do this in my own life?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Osama, True Grit, and Thoughts on Justice

As the world writes, tweets, posts, and comments on the killing of Osama Bin Laden, I am struck by the disparate responses in America, especially among Christians. To describe it succinctly (and albeit, reductionistically), there are two camps: (1) those who are celebrating the death of OBL proclaiming that justice has now been down, and (2) those who portray the American military operation as an act of imperialism and revenge. Both groups are vitriolic against the other: (1) critiques (2) for lacking compassion toward those who lost loved ones in 9/11. (2) critiques (1) for perpetuating the cycle of death, and thereby becoming implicated in the very things we hate in OBL.

Now, I think both positions have a point and more should be said of both groups. In (1), I am not including the half drunk college students who stormed the streets of D.C. the night of the announcement, as if OBL's death is akin to winning a basketball game (I hear students at WVU went out and burned coaches in the street when they received the news). Such kinds of celebrations are an embarrassment. Rather, (1) represents those who are trying to get closure from the devastating events that transpired nearly 10 years ago, who hope for a better world tomorrow, who firmly believe that good has triumphed over evil. And I think it is unfair to judge these people as celebrating the death of human life, rather, they are celebrating the possibility of peace, the possibility that their loved ones in the armed forces will soon return home, (for Muslim Americans) the possibility that they will no longer be viewed as a secret terrorist, and the possibility that the death of one will prevent the death and suffering of many others. For all of these reasons, celebration would seem appropriate, just as it was when WWII (or any war) was finally ended. There are plenty of prooftexts for this view: "When justice is done, it brings joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers" (Prov 21:15); “I will sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. Both horse and driver he has hurled into the sea" (Ex. 15:1); "Deliver me, my God! Strike all my enemies on the jaw; break the teeth of the wicked" (Ps. 3:7).

Group (2) takes the road of pacifism, calling up MLK who reminds us, "Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence..." Thus, as JR Daniel Kirk describes it, by pursuing the death of OBL, we have implicated ourselves in an "economy of death." Thus, we as members of the Kingdom of God should not take part in such an economy. Brian McLaren writes similarly, "Joyfully celebrating the killing of a killer who joyfully celebrated killing carries an irony that I hope will not be lost on us. Are we learning anything, or simply spinning harder in the cycle of violence?" And once again, there are many prooftexts for this view: “Do not rejoice when your enemies fall, and do not let your heart be glad when they stumble” (Prov 24:17); "As I live, says the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live" (Eze. 33:11); "Do not repay anyone evil for evil....If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink" (Rom. 12:17, 20).

Now, I'm not going to attempt to navigate between explaining which of these texts we should agree with, or how they should be synthesized, or offer a hermeneutic that allows for violent war on a political level but pacifism on the personal level. Indeed, I'm not even sure we should be trying to apply Bible verses in such a way to the political sphere, as it implies that the war against terrorism is a holy war, a war against good and evil wherein we have proof that God is on our side (And I'm especially skeptical I can say how God feels or thinks--talking about emotions and God is a whole problem in and of itself!). Further, such questions simply don't interest me because I feel that they simply amount to manipulating the verses to conform to whatever political view one already has to begin with. Rather, I'm drawn to the question: what exactly is the difference between justice and revenge? Before offering a too hasty distinction, I want to begin a few months ago where the question was first problematized for me.

Last December, I watched the Coen Brothers' version of True Grit (both versions are equally worth watching). If you haven't seen the movie (or read the book), the story is of a 14 year-old girl who is on a mission to find the man who killed her father out in the wild west. The local governing authorities have to many problems of their own to go after the murderer and takes matters into her own hands. Intent on having the man hanged, she hires a U.S. Marshall and Texas Ranger and goes after the perpetrator herself (and winds up shooting and killing him herself as he was attempting to attack her). Is this justice? Is it revenge? Is violence OK in the name of self-defense? Merriam-Webster specifically describes revenge as "taking matters into one's own hands," so this would seem to fit the bill, and yet if the local authorities were sitting on their hands, what else could be done? Or should the girl just forgiven the man and hoped he came clean?

With this in mind, I asked my question to one of my friends who reflected on Facebook that revenge, not justice, had been served in the case of OBL. He replied, "Honestly, I think our entire justice system is nothing but revenge in situations where victims aren't compensated and community isn't restored. So I don't know. What I do know is that nothing is fundamentally different and so that's not justice." We both agreed that it is hardly the case that had OBL been given a "trial by jury" then the whole event would have been fair. A trial would have been a joke, a circus, and if anything, an opportunity for him to spout more propaganda and truly go down as a martyr for his cause.

Now, I think this two-fold definition of justice is quite good. To add to it,, uses "righteousness," "conformity to law," and bringing someone to court as useful definitions of justice. But it could also simply be "the administering of deserved punishment or reward." If we stick with just this simple definition, the actions of the U.S. military would seem to fit the bill. As for the two-fold definition, I think that certainly, those who are celebrating do so because they believe restoration is going to happen on some level: particularly US relations with the rest of the world may be strengthened or the neighboring communities in Afghanistan and Pakistan that have been devastated because of Al Qaeda and the war can achieve a newfound peace.

But we are still led to ask whether violence really does ultimately lead to true justice, as in, true peace. Further, the two-fold definition of justice, while good, creates a tremendous difficulty: the fact is that it is impossible for the victims of OBL's terror to be compensated. Indeed, whenever the crime is murder (or rape or torture or psychological damage or...), one could say that it is impossible to truly compensate the victims, and thus, justice is forever deferred.

As much as I am a pacifist and personally believe in the power of love and forgiveness, I find it hypocritical to criticize all acts of war, violence, military operations, etc (some pacifists even condemn the work of police forces), as I am the beneficiary of those who risk their lives, whether that be policemen in my neighborhood or soldiers on the other side of the world. Yes, we can certainly ask whether particular actions are warranted (i.e., Should we have gone into Iraq in the first place?), but to condemn all actions that are violent in nature (technically, acts of non-violence have an aspect of violence to them anyway) would require me to refuse to reap the benefits of a neighborhood, economy, or national heritage that is the result of said violence.

Perhaps it is the case that all violence and all death should be mourned--even the death of the most vile people on earth. But at the same time, we must conclude that there are situations where negotiations, diplomacy, and non-violent actions fail, where war is the only response left (but perhaps doesn't deserve to be called a "solution") in order to curb the deaths and violence that occur in our world. This was the view of those ordinary citizens who took action on Flight 93 nearly ten year ago. It was also the view of German Lutheran pastor, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who took part in an assassination attempt of Adolf Hitler while simultaneously believing it was a sin to murder, especially one who was in a place of authority (the attempt, obviously, failed, and Bonhoeffer was later put to death by the Nazis). And I want to believe it is the view guiding NATO's current actions in Libya and the death of OBL.

All that said, perhaps the events that have conspired are the closest to justice we'll ever get. There is no pure altruism, no possible way for us to tease out a clear demarcation between an action done in the name of justice and one done in the name of revenge. Thus, in the end, a comment made by someone to Brian McLaren's seems to best summarize my thoughts: "Perhaps everyone is right. Perhaps the death of Osama Bin Laden has made this world more safe. I do not believe, however, that his death has made this world more beautiful."

Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy Birthday, Emerson

Emerson, today you now longer have to say that you’re only one. You’re finally two. It has flown by so fast for your parents.

Emerson, I love you. You brighten up each day of my life. You are fun, you are cute, you energize me – and take the energy out of me! I love to share my day with you and share what happens in our days together, because they are always a surprise. You shock me. I never know what you’re going to come up with next, how you’ll respond to situation, what kind of face you’ll give from one day to the next. Today, you’ll learn something new, do something new, that you haven’t done before. You show me that this life that we have is a gift, a miracle.

You have two names that we gave you when you were born. You are named after two people, Emerson Jude.

Ralph Waldo Emerson was a poet, a philosopher, and a scholar much like your dad. He thought about the world, about God, about love, and all in all loved to be out in nature—much like yourself. He spent time thinking about how amazing and wonderful the world is.

While you may not yet be a philosopher yourself, you approach the world with a spirit of awe and wonder—and philosophy, as Aristotle says, begins in wonder. You have also reminded this philosopher (your dad) quite a number of philosophical truths. You have taught me about free will – about how I cannot control you, you are not a robot, and you did not come with an instruction manual. Like Kierkegaard’s faith, which is a leap in the dark, so is parenthood. You have taught me, as Chesterton said, that the best things in life should be done, even if badly. Parenting is one of those things. We are all amateurs, blindly learning what it means to be a parent and learning from our mistakes. Thank you for letting me make mistakes.

You have taught me what it means to live in the present (and frankly, I can’t live in the past because I still get enough sleep to remember it). You force me to put down my future, to stop worrying about what I need to get done tomorrow, stop living in the world of anxiety and success and let each day come and accept it as a gift. You enjoy the now, like a lily in the field, trusting God to clothe you – or just, running around naked and not worrying about clothing at all.

You are also named after Saint Jude, the patron saint of lost causes, the saint of the marginalized, the outcast, the forgotten. I want you to remember that we serve a God who loves the nobodies. He does not give up on anyone. May you be a person who loves the unlovable, who cares for those who are forgotten by our society.

Emerson I love you. We, your parents, are thankful for you, and we wish you a happy birthday.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Of Mice and Men and Mothballs

This week, I may have just made the stupidest decision of my life.

By the end of this story, you might feel sorry for me. You will certainly laugh your ass off.

But the chaos started a couple weeks ago.

I was driving to work, freezing cold outside, defrost roaring inside, when suddenly to my shock, I literally watched a crack grow across my windshield. We actually already had a crack on our windshield, but it wasn’t in the line of sight, so it passed PA inspections (ugh… inspections). Now with two, probably not.

The next week, we called Comcast (twice) because it seemed like our cable was going out. It wasn’t – it was just our third TV to die in about four months. Then Amber scraped a pole in a parking garage with our brand new 2009 Civic (not the one with the cracked windshield). I once read Sheldon Vanauken’s A Severe Mercy, where he wrote that he and his wife always purposefully dented their new cars to quickly remind themselves about not to put their love in temporal items. Needless to say, I didn’t take it as well—but I couldn’t be too harsh given the two parking tickets I got in January…

Sunday night (this week) we were awoken around 2 am to the sound of a rodent (we thought it was a mouse but it could be a squirrel) chewing on something in the wall of our bedroom. I was disturbed for a second, and given that I’m deaf in one ear, was able to put my good ear on the pillow and pretend it wasn’t happening. Amber was not too happy about my apathetic response and promptly nudged me and asked what I was going to do about it. I didn’t do anything, hoping the little critter would just go away.

Monday, we dragged our gigantic tube TV across the floor to make our way down the basement stairs, into the car, and on to the TV recycling center. When we took it into the kitchen, it completely destroyed our already cracked threshold.

Monday night, I was awoken again to the sound of a critter, this time above our ceiling. Clearly, he was not going away and he was finding a way into our attic. Amber woke up, heard the noise, and started looking up what to do to get rid of mice in your attic. She spouted off a list of things I would have to go purchase at Home Depot (once I shoveled the four inches of fresh snow off the driveway) in the morning: De-Con, the plug-ins that supposedly send off a signal mice don’t like, and mothballs. Yes, according to many websites, mothballs will rid you of your pests.

Tuesday night, I went up into the attic and threw mothballs throughout the attic – often purposely throwing at the far reaches of the attic and even down the sides into our walls where the little critter sounds had come from. I had been a successfully good husband.

I should have done more homework first.

No less than thirty minutes later, the entire house smelled of mothballs. So, yes, many people use mothballs as a deterrent for mice because they hate the smell. It is also a deterrent for humans. The smell is only the half of it. Mothballs kill moths and larvae. How? By suffocation. They are gassed to death. According to other websites, mothballs can also kill humans.

At this point, Amber asked me how I placed the mothballs and told me I should go get them out of the attic. I explained to that that was an impossible feat. Mothballs are white and the size of marbles. Insulation is slightly pinkish but basically looks white, especially in poor lighting. This is a needle in a haystack kind of thing.

After refusing to respond to her determined request for two hours, at 11pm, I read up on mothballs on the internet and freaked out. They are very dangerous little things. As this one guy writes, they are evil. In fact, I discovered on the internet that there were other not so informed deter the mice homeowners who had made the same mistake as I. One threw four boxes of mothballs into his attic and finally he and his family moved into his mother’s house for a month. Thankfully, I thought, I had only thrown around ¾ of a box.

So, we set up an air mattress downstairs and over our silently sleeping two year-old—and I rigged our box fan into the vent in the attic to increase circulation. I slept on the couch. I did not sleep for long. At 4:30, I woke up and could not fall back asleep, fearing for our lives and running through the mind the fact that I had dumbly put my family in a gas trap.

At 6AM, I drove to Home Depot and bought a number of items to clear out the attic. Then, I emailed my boss to tell her I wouldn’t be in for work, and rounded it out with a quick email plea for help to some of my friends. Then, up I went into the attic from where I would not return for a long while.

There was no way to remove the mothballs without removing the insulation. This is not rolled insulation. It is blown-in, which means it is chopped up into a trillion pieces and looks like an enormous pillow fight explosion. This was, indeed, insulation I and a friend had installed a few months before (thanks Kylie).

From 7-9, I gathered insulation into trash bags by myself. Then my friend, Ben, came over and helped while Amber watched E and their two year-old (she and E are only four days apart) for an hour and a half until Amber had to leave for work (at which time, Ben would have to stop helping to watch E). I dropped Ben off, I went back to work.

At 11:45 I got a call from my friend Sean, who was free and coming over. Hallelujah. I stopped for a brief lunch. I tried heating up my food in the microwave, and it sparked like mad – as it did last night. Our microwave has also died.

I ate my homemade mac and cheese cold. It was gross. But it was homemade.

We worked, gathering insulation in trash bags and discovering moth balls as if they were buried gold nuggets until 4:30. 75 trash bags later, we had cleared out the attic (now I have a garage fully of trash bags), and we had 30 confirmed mothball sightings. I had been in my attic for nearly 10 hours, all day long thinking, “If this is the dumbest thing I do in my life, I should be proud… No I’ll never live this one down.” My body hurts.

We’ve also gathered up all the odor eliminator products we could find. I have a pile of charcoal and some lava rocks in the attic. Amber placed out some old containers of baking soda and fennel seed. And I must say, after leaving the windows open all day and doing all that we did, we have smelled a remarkable improvement. Now, we have a very smelly garage… But alas, there are still mothballs in our walls that we cannot get out so we’re not quite sure how well we solved the problem.

After all this, I had to go teach a college course from 6-8:30p.m. After cleaning up from the mess, and showering, fifteen minutes later, I met up with a babysitter who would watch E before Amber got home for just a hour. I then drove downtown and hit an onslaught of traffic due to a Pittsburgh Penguins game and had to park a mile away.

We slept again on an air mattress downstairs. I can’t remember the last time my body felt this sore. By Thursday morning, Amber was paranoid that she was getting sick from the smell—even though I taped up the door to the garage, the smell of mothballs knocked me over when I opened the door to the basement. I had planned to wait to move the trash bags of insulation to a friend’s shed—the very friend who helped me blow in the insulation in the first place!—until Saturday, but it couldn’t wait. I moved all the bags outside, and we opened the windows to our house for the rest of the day (it was 40 degrees today). After a few hours, Amber came home and said the house smelled fine, but once she turned on the heater the smell started to come back, albeit faintly.

So, as a precautionary measure, we are sleeping somewhere else tonight and staying away from the house for another day. Hopefully by the weekend this little trip through Purgatory will be over.

Lessons learned:
- The internet tells the truth, just not always the whole truth on the same webpage.
- Moth balls are a strong deterrent for many animals… and for people too.
- Always read the label.
- I have a new appreciation for the term, “fuming.”

P.S. – We still have a critter in our attic.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Emerson's Words

So, we've been trying to tally up a list of all the words, ASL signs (largely thanks to "Signing Time" videos), and sounds Emerson uses to communicate with us now at 20 months, and here's what we came up with. Not that he's a genius or anything, but you can sure tell where his interests lie (balls, animals, and trucks!):

Spoken words:
Tow truck (“ta tuck”)
Tractor (“tac ta”)
Shoes (“shoooo”)
Nite Nite
Baby (“dada,” not to be confused with Daddy…)
Banana (“nana”)
Juice (“joo”)
“Deck Dopter” (helicopter – we’ve only heard this one once)
“Ana” (his term for virtually everything that flies)
One (“un”)
Boot (“boop”)
Yes (“yah”)
Mouth (“Moum”)
Eye (“aah”)
All done
Bye bye (“nye nye” – he never says this to people… in fact, the only time he really says it is when we’re flushing stink bugs down the toilet!)

ASL (sign language):
More / Help / Ball (they all look alike these days… depends on the context!)
Eat / Food
Ice cream
Grumpy (he learned this from pointing out this dog in a Clifford book that was always angry!)
Sorry (we’re starting to use this one quite a bit!)
Cell Phone (holds palm up to his ear)
All done

Grr (bear)
Rarr (lion, tiger, and quite a few others)
Wadda Wadda Wadda (penguin)
Eee Eee (monkey)
Arf Arf! (dog)
Hamph (crocodile)
Hop! (frog)
Arr Arr (sea lion)
Twee twee (bird)
Caw Caw (parrot)
Baaa (Sheep/goat)
Haa haa (Horse – he literally fake laughs)
Mmmmm (cow)
Buck buck (chicken)
Doo Doo! (rooster)
Snort (pig – he makes a snorting sound and wrinkles his nose)
Eww (Skunk – he also plugs his nose with his fingers and wrinkles his face, which is the same thing he does if he has a dirty diaper)
Ssss (snake)
Whoo (owl)
Hhhmmmm (elephant)
Pppfff (human fart)
WhoOOO (Fire truck)
Choo Choo (train)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Emerson Ball Skills

So Emerson has really been showing off his ball throwing skills lately. Check out his great form (and hilarious leg kick) in the following videos:

[If the video doesn't come up, go to this link]

[Again, if the video doesn't come up go to this link]

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Pumpkin Patch

Amber's mom was in town this past week, and we took Emerson to the pumpkin patch. Here's a comparison with last year. I can't believe this is the same kid!

And a comparison of Halloween costumes: