Monday, October 29, 2007

Oh Brother!

Last week I had an unexpected email from my "little brother" and his wife, pictured here. B is not my brother biologically, but he is my brother in Christ and he lived with my Mom and step Dad when things weren't so great in his own family. He was in high school and I was just out of college. We were both going through tough times in our lives and really bonded. We shared friends at church, fun times with some of my college friends and mainly just goofed around. He picked on me just the way a "real" brother would. :o) Our family has always stayed in touch and still claim him as "ours". He'll have a hard time getting rid of us! LOL In 1992, he joined the Navy. And later when he told me he met a gal at a party, I thought "Oh great!" But his wife L is really great and we love her too! B was somewhere out on his sub in the ocean the last time I saw his family when my D was 2 months old and we have just never connected since. When I was in WA, he was stationed in CT and HI. But, of all things, a soccer tournament held 5 miles from my house brought us together this weekend. It was so awesome to see them!

This is me and B. Bad picture of me but it's here for my Mom. (I hope you appreciate this Mom!) First thing he said when he saw me was how much I look like my Mom! I had a chance to remind him later (when he removed his hat and revealed his non-Navy induced hair impairment! LOL) that the top of his head reminded me of someone else...hmmm... perhaps his Dad! LOL

We missed L's game. She is on the right along with a teammate. However, we did meet up with them at some picnic tables at the soccer park. L's family lives about 2 hours from me, so they were all there too, which was nice for them all to be able to get together after a really tough year.

Here is L with their oldest daughter C. Fortunately the girls take after their Mom (ha! ha!). C has grown into a really lovely young lady. I feel old...she is now a freshman in high school and will be turning 14 in a couple weeks!

My brother has always been really good with kids. Here he is showing A and D how to bounce a ball on their foot.

I had to post this picture of A in her new jeans and new shirt...just before she slipped and covered herself an inch thick in mud! Good thing I was a Girl Scout, "be prepared" and all! LOL We had extra clothes left in the van from when we had gone to the ocean in September.

Way to go B! Bend it like Beckham! LOL

B showing D how to drop the ball, NOT throw it, onto his foot to bounce.

I was so appreciative of the time he took with each of my children individually to show them how to kick and maneuver the ball. This is J. She was a little bashful with him, she's my quiet one, but she had fun.

You can see the look of joy on her face. She is always pleased when someone takes the time to do something with her. Sister A in the middle. It really makes me happy when people treat my girls as individuals, because that's what they are! But as identical twins often get grouped together. It's understandable, but as a Mommy, I am always thankful when they get treated as two unique people. I forgot to ask B and L if they could tell the girls apart. Probably not, except that they had different clothes on. (I rarely dress them alike)

Here B and A are practicing passing the ball.

A doesn't know yet that you don't use your hands in soccer. "Look what I can do Uncle Bruce!" :o)

She couldn't figure out which side of her foot to kick with. We have been practicing that when we put our shoes on, Hello Kitty goes on the outside. So, I told her to kick with the side that does not have Hello Kitty! So in this picture she is figuring it out. Then she says, "Uncle Bruce, I have Hello Kitty shoes!" News Flash...isn't everyone in the world excited by kitties on the shoes? She certainly thinks so! :o) (Another thing to make me feel old! I remember when Hello Kitty came out when I was in junior high!)

I dont' think A was trying to learn how to head, but that's what happened! It looks like she's posing in some "crane pose" for yoga or martial arts! LOL

Here's A again. She was just a little comic. She can never figure out why she can't see the ball after she throws it! LOL She usually manages to get it behind her!

Hubby caught this shot of me catching the soccer ball after J kicked it and hit me in the head! (This is for you too Mom!)

There was a duck pond and fountain at the park too. All the kids were really interested in it. We watched all the soccer kids leaning into the muddy water looking to see what was there.

And naturally my children are always attracted to the water. Here is J, D and A (front to back) in a neat shot that Hubby caught.

There were a couple of water lillies blooming but they were too far out to get very good shots.

Here's L practicing with her soccer ball. When we left she had another soccer game to play and two more on Sunday. They tied the first game and I don't know how they did on the rest. They were playing some tough teams but L is a go-getter and very skilled.

My brother with his girls. L in the top picture. She's almost 9. And C in the second picture.

Here's the whole family together. It was a short but sweet visit. Hopefully the next visit won't be so long away. He's finally stationed in Washington and I'm down here. About the time I go back up, he'll probably be restationed. :o(

After our visit, my family went to Ikea to get the rest of the flooring we need to do the kids' room and too look at bunk beds. We think we have one picked out for them. Next weekend we are hoping to start on their room transformation. Naturally, pics will follow! :o)

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