Monday, May 6, 2013

The Week Away

Greetings friends and family,

The 4 Webbs are together again, safe and sound.  We have no family here in Arizona, but we are grateful for our church family.  We left Easton and Layla completely in the hands of the church family while we were gone for 5 nights.  The first few hours including the flight and arrival in Dallas were stressful.  Not because of anything that happened, but because I was processing how the twins were fully out of our control or safety.  I wasn't worried, just needed a little time to accept the facts and get the worry and fear out of my head.

I made that shift at the same time as I screamed "yeah! this is awesome!" while riding the Batman ride at Six Flags.  It's much more intense when viewing in first person, but here's an idea of how the ride went.

I know my last post mentioned the Six Flags trip, but I finally had a chance to upload the related video.

Anyway,  our five day conference was amazingly impactful.  I feverishly typed away on my laptop while the speakers talked through the training and provided wisdom.  So many "aha!" moments that explained the missing pieces of our understanding.  It's one thing to have knowledge and another to have experience.  This conference was a little bit of knowledge with a ton of experience.

Even though the conference lasted each day until four, we spent every evening together with just the two of us.  we walked hand in hand from place to place without being referee or mediator or disciplinarian for the twins.  It was wonderful. We passed a Krispy Kreme and stopped by for an afternoon treat.

Much of my evenings was spent looking across the table at Kendra like this:

What's so special about that?  Well, for once I had her undivided attention when the sun was out.  Since the twins were born every day is filled with house cleaning, caring for kids, and running errands.  And church related activities and leading requires creating a space in the midst of those things.  That means free time for Kendra and I to do absolutely nothing is almost zero.

It didn't take long for us to adjust to the "just you and me" idea.  As soon as we were dropped off at the airport we waited in line together.  We smiled at each other, hugged, and enjoyed the silence.  I see couples in restaurants who don't talk all the time.  For years I thought they had a dysfunctional marriage or were just bored with each other.  After spending a week in restaurants with Kendra now I realize that those moments of silence and relaxation over a meal are highly coveted and precious.  She's here with me and we can hold hands across the table.  or not.  we can have a conversation about random dreams like owning an island.  or not.  we can people watch for a few minutes without acknowledging the other person.  or not.

The experience of the week highlighted our incorrect perception of "normal" around our house.  The pace of the day and high expectations and deadlines were too far on the busy side.

We arrived home safely to find two smiley faces who missed us terribly.  I can't imagine what a father must feel like coming back from a six-month deployment overseas.  Even so, being gone five days resulted in a great reunion at the airport.  Lots of hugs and kisses and excitement!

Saturday I spent the day reconnecting with the twins. In the afternoon we lounged by the pool together.  I gave each of them a few hours of individual, uninterrupted Daddy time doing whatever they chose.  Layla decided on tea time for our Daddy date.

Her cupcake and lemonade were special treats they don't normally get, but of all the possible ways to spend time with me, she chose this. We caught up on our week apart and we laughed so loud that we captured the attention of almost everyone in the cafe.

I gave Easton the same offer and he wanted to go for a hike together.  We've never done this with just the two of us.  We made it to the top of the first peak and took our time looking at every bug and hole and cactus on the way up and down.

As we hiked back to the car he asked to get a toy from Target.  I'm doing my best to teach him the concept of "opportunity cost" and finances.  He's getting the hang of it and finding out how to make decisions.  I offered him three toys.  One for $10 I would buy for him completely, One for $12 I would buy for him if he gives me $2 from his spend bank at home, and one for $20 that I told him he could have next week if he waits.

He chose the $12 and I took the two bucks when we went home.

So much to teach and so little time.  He'll be 18 and heading off to college before I know it.

Today is my first day of vacation from work where I'm able to be at home.  This week will be hang out time for the 4 Webbs with no work and no plans... other than a few dinners and lunches with friends.  :)

Disneyland is just around the corner!  We've been talking about going for the past 3 years.  It's hard to tell if Kendra is more excited than Easton and Layla.

See you soon!

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