July 23, 2014

new cord, new chapter

Turns out our internet has been spotty and finally gave out completely because George Fuzzy, our 2-year-old long-haired lop-eared overgrown bunny, was chewing the cord from his favorite hiding place under the entertainment center.

The internet repair man found the chewed cord today and replaced it, so I can FINALLY post the pictures from Jubilee's Wyldstyle birthday.
presents at breakfast, a Rupp tradition
one cute birthday girl

A Wyldstyle cake. Neon food coloring, BTW, gives kids "wyld" colored poo...

celebrating in the evening in our pjs with dear friends (pardon the low quality of the pic; we need to use our real camera instead of our phone)

And now our youngest is 5, which makes us officially old. Or at least we are officially starting a new chapter of our lives, in which all of our kids are "school age." Wow, time absolutely flies.

July 10, 2014

Mama's behind the wheel!

My kids didn't believe I could actually drive (though I assured them it was so) until yesterday when I FINALLY received my local driver's license. It took many months, three medical exams, countless hours of memorizing poorly-translated and utterly pointless multiple choice questions, a renewed American drivers license through the mail (oversight on our part), and a renewed visa. Then I took a nail-biting 45-minute test, on which I scored 94%, and was finally handed my prize.
Why are ID pics so hideous? I look a lot like my late grandmother here, actually, which redeems it some.

But only the kids were around to congratulate me. Daniel is out of the country attending some on-campus classes, where he is soaking up the sun and eating at places like this:

And this:
Steak Gorgonzola, anyone? In my dreams.

July 02, 2014

I know why the weaned child rests

Our dear "Miss Candle" sent us a care package recently, and in it was Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts devotional. I loved the book, and now I am loving the devotional. Each day is like a word-danish to go along with my coffee; a poem-arrow pointing me to God. (Voskamp uses lots of made up hyphenated words so I thought I'd do the same).

I especially loved one particular entry around Psalm 131:2 which reads, "Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; like a weaned child rests against his mother, my soul is like a weaned child within me."

I love this verse, though I have only ever eye-brushed it before. This week I stared at it, long and hard, looking into the world of its implications. A weaned child longs for breast milk as I long for the audible voice of God. As I long for His physical hand stroking my hair, and for the complete absence of pain that His absolute presence would surely bring.

And yet a weaned child finally comes to the point when he can rest his head on his mother's milk-scented breast, denied the thing he wants, but allowed access forever to the person he needs.
Missing our man this month, as he is out of the country for a PhD course. XOXO


June 27, 2014

1% lovebirds

I've mentioned before that our smack-dab-beside-us, share-the-same-wall neighbors are a family of Californian girls with Russian and Hong Kong descent.

And I've mentioned before that Gene and Emma, their oldest, are great chums. And boy are they ever! Secret code messages, long talks on the trampoline when they are tired of jumping, even the occasional healthy spat. Here they are with Jungle Camp's Chocolate Cake with Buttercream Frosting that they baked two days ago in my kitchen and then went around the apartment complex peddling for 5 kuai a slice.

And then there's Zion and Sasha, their middle child, who are perhaps a little more than chums;) In their words, they are 99% friendbirds and 1% lovebirds. They plan to have a pig farm when they grow up, in which every one of their pigs are pets and none of them ever go to slaughter.

"How will you make money from your pig farm?" I asked them.

"We'll sell the baby pigs to people who want them as pets."

Fair enough.

And tiny Tamara, with her squeaky voice, and shoes always on the wrong feet, has provided Jubilee with a best friend.

The recipes for the cake:


June 23, 2014

No. 1 in the nation

I've noticed her skills before, the girl who fashions our subs at our favorite Subway restaurant. Her plastic gloves don't hold her back one bit. Her fingers fly over the compartments of cold cuts and veggies, barely touching them before they are laid perfectly on the perfectly spliced loaf before her. It's like a dance she is doing back there behind the angular plexiglass. It's like dinner and a show.

So it shouldn't have surprised me today to find out that our very own sandwich maker, at our very own frequented franchise, just won Subway's Best Sandwich Maker in The Nation! In the NATION! Do you know how big this nation is? Big. Really dang big.

I'm just so proud.

June 22, 2014

peach season

It is peach season in Northwest Arkansas, Allison tells me.

And that's sweet because it's peach season here, too!

The strawberries became darker and cushier until they disappeared from fruit stands altogether, where they were quickly replaced by cherries. I skipped cherry season. My kids don't eat them, and I'm too spoiled by the Michigan cherries of my youth.

And now the peaches are here. So we drove up the mountain yesterday to pick, pare, and grill peaches until our skin itched from briars and bugs and our clothes were caked with the sweat of the mountain. It surely is peach season once again.