Claudia’s Birthday, Part 2

Do people ever contemplate ending their lives because a day is too good? If ever there was a day to inspire such life-ending thoughts, it was Sunday. I thought, more than once, that lf I were to die tomorrow it would be ok since I had been here for this day. I also knew that I most likely wouldn’t be dying tomorrow and that this day’s perfection would diminish in my mind until it was just like any old day. In hopes of keeping it around a little longer, here are the details.

We had the big blowout and the wonderful thing was, it was neither big, nor a blowout. There were no silly themes, no abundance of latex balloons, just simple crepe streamers, freshly mowed grass, and family.

We did the cake and gift thing inside and then moved the party to the yard where four generations of Simonsons played in the sunshine. We invested a whopping $8 in a bubble machine that turned out to be the hit of the party, both for the kids who got to play in 10,000 bubbles, but also for the adults that got to sit and watch without blowing endlessly or being covered in soap.


I felt, the entire day, that there would never be another day as perfect as this one. The great-grandparents won’t always be with us, the kids will grow up soon and be too cool to play in the yard with their aunts and uncles. Soon birthdays will come and be about what cartoon character we can have plastered on every available surface and what gifts lie beneath the wrapping paper. But this one, was just about being together, about enjoying a nice Iowa spring day. And it was just about perfect.

Continue Reading

Claudia’s Birthday, Part 1

Here is Claudia on Friday, which was her actual birthday. That means that even though we were going to be having cake on Sunday for the big party, we HAD to have it on Friday, too. Poor, poor us.

Claudia tried to fool us with her, “I’m too cool to stick that cake all over my face” look.

But we won her over with our gooey chocolate on chocolate cake.

A very fine time was had by all.

Continue Reading

Moments before one


The last moments before Claudia hit the big one year mark. She has no idea that it’s all downhill from here.

Soon to come: pictures of the blowout. We had cake and everything.

I know, I know, I am the next Martha Stewart.

Continue Reading

Who are you and why are you here?

Here is the thing, there is a counter on the bottom of this page that I put there as a reminder to myself that I should keep an eye on just how much I visit my own kid’s page.

And while I do like to look at my kids, there is no way that I have been here 400 times. I also know that the great bulk of our family is internet-free, so that leads me to today’s question: just who is visiting this page and why?

Is it people like me? Friends living far away that are curious to see how the kids, and Eric and I, are turning out? I have to admit I check the family blogs of our faraway friends a lot. Is is people that I went to high school with judging me and my kids? If so, I better put better-looking pictures of myself on here, the kids are pretty good looking already. Perhaps it is someone drawn in my my sparkling wit and poor spelling. Because really, who isn’t drawn to that?

I’m just wondering, so if you get a minute, and I know you have one because you’re here, drop a line in the comments to let me know.

Also, for Cynthia, who asked: katelyn107@yahoo.com

Continue Reading

MRI Update

I think that my radiation oncologist has a boat payment due or something because Monday I got a call that the final reading of my latest MRI came through and they found something in the thorasic spine that has grown since my last scan, nine months ago.

So, it turns out that I will soon be off again to be put back in that very little tube. So much for my “no MRI for a year” dance. And I was even going to upload pictures.

Continue Reading

Easter isn’t what it used to be

Ah, Easter 2006. Did anyone else get cell phones in their Easter basket, or was it just Claudia?

The whole Simonson/ Zeka crew after church. Even the heathens go to church on Easter.

Emily decked out in her Easter finest. She can imagine no better holiday than one that lets her dress up, wear a hat, eat herself into a candy coma, and go to church with her parents. That’s right, our child LOVES church.

Claudia decided that she needed two hands to get all the chocolate. Little does she know that she can’t eat any of that chocolate. I guess her parents will have to. It’s as if the Easter Bunny knew that when he filled Claudia’s basket with a bunch of fancy, expensive stuff. Hmmm.

Here she is eating a chocolate carrot. Well, the foil from a chocolate carrot. Poor Claudia.

Continue Reading

Twister

Photo ©2006 Miranda Meyer

Thursday night, the winds came and did terrible things to my home town. Maybe it is because I only lived there until I was 17, and then again when I underwent 6 weeks of radiation, but it feels like someone had done something awful to someone I love very much, someone I didn’t realize was vulnerable. It makes me sad.

And I STILL couldn’t afford to live there. Not even it this house.
Continue Reading

Emily’s music selection of the day

Emily saw me putting in my little book review and decided that she had a little rooftop-crying to do herself. She would like me to mention that she is a HUGE fan of Laurie Berkner.

If the history of cadaver disposal is not for you, maybe Laurie’s dvd or one of her cds are. Or, perhaps there is a happy medium between the two.

Continue Reading

Kate’s little book club

It seems that I so rarely can be found reading anything that doesn’t have pictures in it these days that I thought I would cry from the rooftops about the very interesting book that I just finished.


This may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it was very much mine.

Continue Reading