Things unsaid.

Blame it on ADD. Sometimes I start a conversation on this blog, then never get around to finishing it. Other thoughts emerge and seem much more urgent, and I leave all y’all without much closure. I’m going to try to remedy some of that today.

First — THE RUG.

I’ve decided to send it back.

Several of you encouraged me not to settle, and I’m grateful you did. The longer the rug sat in my living room, the less comfortable I felt with it. At the same time, I can’t justify spending the extra money on the “original” rug. If we were talking a little discount, that would be different. But this is a matter of several hundred dollars’ difference, close to two grand, actually. I cannot in good conscience spend that much (more) money on a rug. One rug. For one room … it’s just too much.

So, I don’t know what we’re going to do just yet. In the meantime, though, we’re going back to naked hardwood. (I dread the spam that will surely come from using those two words in the same sentence.)

Second — LONDON.

We had a fabulous time!! In less than four days we saw Westminster Abby, the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, London Bridge, Waterloo Bridge, the Tower Bridge, the National Museum, Trafalgar Square, Harrods, Notting Hill, Hyde Park, Paddington Station, Windsor village, Windsor Castle, Kensington Palace, the Royal Gardens, Canary Wharf, London’s Eye, Piccadilly Circus and the place where they filmed the original BBC “The Office.” Oh, and a bazillion cool little shops and several stops on the “tube.” We ate at a dozen incredible restaurants and stayed in two fine hotels. Overall, it was splended mini-vacation!

Here’s a picture of us inside Windsor Castle.

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We have several other, better pictures of the Castle, but this is the best picture of the two of us together. (Isn’t he great?!)

Here’s how Rick spent half the vacation: texting Grandma to make sure the kids were okay and not ruining our future chances of getting away together with free babysitting at home.

IMG_5388Behind him are Parliament (left) and Westminster Abby (right).

Here’s a picture of me trying to remember how to smile. (I am absolutely terrible with poses! It’s best if I’m oblivious to the presence of cameras.)

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Here’s another picture of us, this one near a nifty fountain in Hyde Park. I really like this one, even the one Diana appears to be scratching my ear.

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Finally, the requisite first-trip-to-London pic:

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The subsequent picture, taken seconds later, shows me realizing that, since everyone now has cell phones, these funny booths are now public restrooms.

We learned new words! Nappy, for example, is not something you take in the afternoon, but rather something you change. Like a diaper. Brits don’t get flu shots; they get “jabs” which are covered with “plasters” (a.k.a. band-aids). My favorite, though, was Hooters. This store, unlike the American version, does not offer large-breasted women in too-tight tops serving chicken wings. No, this is a store where you purchase musical instruments, like horns and other things that “hoot.”

I also saw an advertisement of “Top 30 Things We Love About London.” Number 27 stated this: “Going potty with paint.” I have no idea what that means and wasn’t brave enough to ask anyone. With my mom experience, though, I would guess it has something to do with far too much food coloring in some type of sugary food that then produces technicolor poo. Personally, it’s not in my “Top 30” list.

Last, but not least, we found these:

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Yes, you’re reading that correctly: Prawn Cocktail potato chips. This was not an isolated finding. We also found Pringles of this flavor! They were in local shops, the airport, the train stations … Nuts. What’s worse: our daughter — the self-proclaimed “Shrimp Girl” — LOVED them. I bought a bag as a joke, but then had to ask Rick to bring home some more because the kids, Zach included, liked them so much. I didn’t try them. My mother-in-law did. (God bless her!) She said they tasted like horseradish sauce and a little bar-be-que. Interesting.

Third — Well, I had planned to write a third, but this post is already too long! Let me just say THANK YOU. I’ve received several emails, facebook notes and comments about my recent post: 2012 Days. The purpose of that post was simply to praise God for extended innocence. I am SO VERY GRATEFUL that my kids have had charmed lives. There is much more I can say about this, but words elude me. My heart overflows with God’s grace and goodness. He is forever faithful, merciful, GREAT.

I’ve learned (though I never truly doubted) that I am not alone in this challenge. Recognizing this, I want to share more specifically about the discussions I’ve had with our kids. I’ll do that tomorrow. This is not because I’m an expert by any means! Rather, I know that we learn from each other’s experiences. Perhaps something I’ve said or some wording I’ve used can help one of you. Perhaps what I say will spark a discussion where you can help me based on your experiences. I’m happy to take all the help I can get! :) So, stay tuned. A bit more closure will come in tomorrow’s post.

Talk to me!

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