Triple Threat

Last week was a big week for Sam.  It began with the school awards assembly where he was recognized as Best Male Performer for the Spring semester.


Mr. Turner and Sam

It ended with the school’s “Monologue and Songs Competition”…


where he danced, and he monologued, and he sang.  He was so good!

We knew about the dancing, it was a group thing, everyone had to do it.  Sam’s on the right side of the screen front row.


We also knew about the monologue.  He wrote his own monologue this year and I’d heard him rehearsing it through his bedroom door, but this was the first time I saw it performed.


We did not know about the singing.  And when I say we didn’t know about the singing I mean we didn’t know Sam sang.  We knew he was able to sing, but we didn’t know he sang in public.  We also didn’t know he wrote lyrics.  So we were as surprised as everyone else when he got up on stage to sing an original song.  His friend who accompanied him on guitar wrote the music.


Seeing how this was a competition there were trophies.  Sam came home with second place for his monologue.


Mr. Turner and Sam



Michael W. Smith is an idiot

Pretty much every summer of my teen years was spent at youth camp. It wasn’t uncommon for camp to end with the song Friends by Michael W. Smith. Everyone cried and hugged and the feels were so real because goodbyes were so hard. And then we all saw each other again on Sunday at church. At that time I thought goodbye meant that summer camp was ending and we wouldn’t be eating s’mores together until summer camp next year. I had no idea that goodbye could mean it’s most likely we will never see each other again. Ever. But I’m beginning to realize that it does. And the goodbyes don’t stop. They don’t stop. They do not stop. Almost every day I say goodbye to someone. Yes, some of them I just met the same day, but I’m at the point that every hello is really just a trigger warning that a goodbye is coming.


all the world’s a stage…

tonight was the last performance of the last play sam will do at cmis.   he’s sort of a loner when it comes to running lines and practicing, so while i’d heard bits and pieces of his lines through his bedroom door, i’d never heard him actually run his lines.  he did an amazing job and it was a lot of fun to watch him totally transform in to the character.

sam came on stage and if i hadn’t known which character he was playing i wouldn’t have known it was sam.  voice was different, mannerisms were different, everything was different.


pretty quickly he took a turn for the worse and was in his death bed.


from his death bed he had a heart to heart with his son he hadn’t seen in 10 years.


and he just kept on in his death bed.


he shared another moment with his son.  from his death bed.


he was so committed to this death bed thing that he stayed there during intermission.


for all of intermission.


as the cast performed stage right (or maybe it was stage left) he stayed in his death bed


yep, still in his death bed.


yep, still there.


from his death bed he confessed his love to his estranged life.  and then he died.


he pulls old man off pretty well.


making a home

one of the things i’m looking forward to in colorado is making a home for our family.

i currently have three things hanging on walls in my house and they are all in odd locations because that’s where the nail or screw just happened to already be and that got me thinking…

when we moved to thailand we assumed we’d be here a long time.  a really long time, but we’ve never had a timeline.  we didn’t really know how long we’d be here when we arrived and each year came with either the promise of another year or the threat that we could be moving.  that makes it hard to create a home.  i’ve never put a nail into a wall here.  if something happens to be hung it’s because there was already a nail in place to hold it.  for christmas decorations we used temporary tape type things.  nothing permanent.  nothing that left a hole that would require filling in when we left.  we’ve lived in three houses here and i’ve painted one room.  the kitchen in the current house.  but it still doesn’t feel like my kitchen.  it’s just a borrowed kitchen i’ve painted yellow.

a while ago (while i was cooking christmas dinner) michael and i had a fight over a ladle.  i was cooking and i commented that i would be glad to not see this particular ladle once we moved.  he said that we should take it with us, a new ladle would cost money that we didn’t need to spend.  his statement might be true, but my only thought was that this ladle belongs in a kitchen that is in a house that’s never been our home (i also thought ladles are cheap and if i want a new ladle i’ll get a new ladle.)  i think it might have been the first time we had to think about our return being more than just a move.  while a lot of the steps are the same as the moves we’ve made in the past – making to do lists, packing boxes, arranging logistics… all that fun stuff – there’s something different on the other end.  something that i’m not totally ready to embrace, but something that i know will be good.

i’m looking forward to making a home.  i’m going to paint walls (lots of walls, but not all the walls) and i’m going to hang pictures.





making plans, dragging feet

time marches on.  it just won’t stop and i’d like it to.  i’d like to pull back on the reigns and say, “whoa” and have time stop.  and wait until i’m ready for it to move forward, but it won’t.  it just won’t.

right now i count the days by the thens.  michael’s in indonesia right now.  he’s been gone for almost 2 weeks and has another week to go.  then he’s home for a little less than a week.  then he’s in africa for approximately 2 weeks.  then he’ll be home for close to a week.  then he’s in america for 4 days.  (yes, he’ll spend almost as much time traveling for that trip as he will actually be there and he’ll spend way more time recovering from that trip than he will be there.)  then he’s home.  and for some reason that’s when time really starts for me.  time starts in april.  not sure what my mind thinks happens between now and then (mid Feb and early April), but for some reason it doesn’t feel real.  it doesn’t feel like progress.  about the same time michael returns from america family starts arriving.  aly (i cannot wait to see her, it’s been so long!!!), her boyfriend (we’ve never met him), my mom, and my aunt will all come to chiang mai.  and i’m crossing my fingers and hoping against hope that chan will also be coming (that feels like a bit of a long shot, but also not impossible).  we’ll have two weeks of family and tourist stuff and songkran and time not stopping.  overshadowing everything is the weight of “this is it”.  this is good bye.  this is our last smokey season (miserable, but we’ll miss it).  our last hot season (miserable, but we’ll miss it).  our last songkran (not always miserable and something i will definitely miss).  and i think what makes it harder is that it doesn’t feel like there are any firsts to come.  it isn’t our first time to live in america.  it’s not our first time to live in colorado.  it’s not even our first time to live in the house we’ll be returning to.  it feels like too much.  but it can’t be stopped.

so, we make plans.  there are the we need to sort this plans, the we need to do this plans – the logistical stuff that comes with moving.  those are sort of easy (easy to see, not necessarily easy to do.)  but then there are the we have to do this plans.  and they aren’t the same for all of us.  michael is ticking off some of his through work.  i know with each trip he makes he’s saying goodbyes.  and it’s not easy for him.   the hardest plan of all is the final how do we leave chiang mai plan.   figuring out how to do goodbye isn’t easy.

it’s much easier to say late july is forever away.

Christmas 2015

Our last Christmas in Thailand.  (Yes, I now see everything through the lens of we’re moving and it’s the last time we’ll do blank in Thailand.)

I did something a little different on Christmas Eve.  I went to CrossFit Circus school – it was a juggling/acro class.  The juggling I’ve got to work on, but how awesome will it be when juggling random (non-pointy and not-on-fire) things becomes my cool party trick.  I’m pretty much a pro at the acro.  I should probably add carnival side show to my linkedin profile.

After circus school, I did some grocery shopping.  It’s really nice to be able to wait until the day before to do the grocery shopping for the Christmas day meal.  Then it was home for family time and staying awake for the candle light service at church.  This gets harder and harder each year.  I might have nodded off a few times during the service.

Christmas morning we were greeted by our house-help (& friends) and their kids, Khao, Jim, Beckham, and Patty.  They sang carols, prayed for us, and gifted us with eggs.

Then it was present time.  All my pictures are of Sam opening presents.  It’s tough being the only kid left. All the attention is on you. Unless , unlike Sam, you’re the kind of kid who likes that.

After presents were open it was time to cook.  Our tradition the past few years has been to order ham and/or turkey (this year just ham) and to pick one side dish each to go along with it.  This year we also ordered stuffing and rolls.  Our side dishes were broccoli rice casserole, macaroni & cheese, brussel sprouts, and banana pudding.

I got a little teary as Sam made the banana pudding.  I can’t remember a holiday with out banana pudding.  My great grandmother used to make it, then my grandmother made it, then I took over and now Sam.  I’m pretty sure that makes it a tradition.

Dinner was delicious.  Turns out I really enjoy cooking when Sam takes on over 50% of the kitchen work.  After dinner we played a game of Axis & Allies.  Michael and I were the Axis and we proved you can’t rewrite history.