viernes, 15 de junio de 2012

Happy Father's Day

I am a woman, not a man. Great discovery, huh? But it is for that same reason that I cannot describe what being a dad feels or even means for Emerson. 

I am not a mind reader either. Even if I were, my husband's mind is so complex that I don't understand how he tackles some issues in our relationship in the complete opposite way that I do. I have seen his "brain" at work, and he is just a very intriguing person. He once tried to explain to me how he memorizes the highways and streets in a given city. He said in his mind/brain -whatever- he had like this map, and that it had connections, like he could see the intersections and everything... I need the GPS, and even that thing gets me lost. 

So I guess this post is not about what I think Emerson should feel, nor I will try to philosophy about fatherhood. This post is just about what I see in Emerson that makes him the best man, husband, and Daddy in the world. Especially, it is about what I saw on Tuesday, June 12, 2012.

By the way, isn't she super cute??     

Just like Daddy
So beautiful

But before telling you, let me share with you that I don't ever save money. I can tell you right now my husband is shaking his head saying, "Tsk, tsk, tsk". Lately, however, I've been doing it, but pretty much because he is making me. I am also sticking to my grocery budget. That money that I saved came in handy now that Father's Day was coming. I was able to buy three gifts for Dad. 

Did I say I? Oh, excuse me, I meant we were able to buy Dad three gifts, each one of us, Mom, Libby, and Baby. This post is a gift to you also, Emerson. Your other three gifts you have to find around the house :)

"Go find your gifts, Daddy!!"

So anyway... On Tuesday morning we went for our usual morning walk. I asked Merrith to pray for me, for my marriage. I told her sometimes I feel like everything is fine between Emerson and I, but that I assume it is fine. It's like I have this assurance that the plant will never die, because we are committed for life, but still I felt that I needed to water the plant. 

So I asked her to pray for a very good evening in the garage since my husband was gonna brew some Witbier. I don't know, just intimacy, whatever the water was. Elizabeth is more mobile now, and I didn't want her to be crying or anything, I just wanted peace and quiet, you know? Enjoying each other's company, spending time together, even if we didn't talk much.

I think God answered that prayer in many ways. Even ways that go far beyond what I have asked for. I've heard people say that you should be very specific when you ask God for something. And I kind of understand what they mean, but not really. In my perspective, when I say that I should have been more specific with my prayers, I am just joking. I mean, God knows what I need.

Let me illustrate this. Say you are involved in a car accident, and your life is in danger when you get to the hospital. The  doctor tells your family you might die. And so your family and all your friends pray for you, for wisdom for the doctors, for healing, for a miracle. And you are healed, you get to live, and the doctors don't understand how you made it. Oh, but there is this little, tiny problem. Your leg got so severed in the car accident that you, well, you lost your leg, and you'll get to wear a prosthesis for the rest of your life.

Raw materials

Are you really telling me that you lost your leg because your family and friends weren't really specific? And so, just because they didn't specifically asked for your leg, God said something like, "Oh, well, let's not save his leg because they didn't ask for this."

That's plain bull. That is not how God works or thinks. I am not God's spokesperson to know absolutely everything that goes on with Him, but thinking like that of Him would show me that you do not know absolutely anything about His goodness or His love. Why did you lose your leg? I don't freaking know! But it is not because you weren't specific.  

So, yes, we did have a wonderful time brewing, or at least, for most of the brewing process. I guess I will say then -now that you know I'm joking- that I wasn't specific in asking Merrith to pray also that we didn't have any complications during chilling time :) 

Getting ready
Boiling water

Ephesians 3:20 says that God is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine... and He did. The answer to my prayer came in a way that left me with a Whaaat? in my face. So I guess I will get to philosophy a little bit in this post. It wouldn't be my blog if I didn't. 

We had pizza for dinner. Libby ate outside with us. Emerson was busy. I took care of the dishes, and he  continued working. There was no crying at all since Libby was watching a Baby Einstein show on the laptop. Everybody was minding their own business. I was on Facebook, I was also reading Mexico's newspaper on my iPhone, and I was taking photos because this was Emerson first beer with his new RIMS system. He had run it before with water, and it worked perfectly fine. Everything was working great.

Einstein girl :)

Long story short, when the wort was boiling, he added the hops, some orange peel, and some coriander seeds. The process was over, and now he just needed to start the pump, so that by vacuum, the wort would be filtrated by passing through the hop rocket. Then it would reach the chiller, and get all the way to the  carboy for the primary fermentation. After checking the temperature, you add the yeast, put the air lock and bless your beer. That happened, we blessed it... The process, though, took longer than it should have.

Just pretend you are watching It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Sweet Dee is saying, "God damn it! God damn you, orange peel!!"

Some wort came out, then nothing would come out. The dip tube got clogged, and the hoses would shake because of the intense vacuum the pump was making. Emerson unclogged the dip tube, and it worked... for a minute. It was like that for almost an hour. He was trying to find out what was happening. We know now it was the orange peel or a combination of everything that got stuck into the dip tube. We saw these huge pellets of debris passing through the hose. He managed to get most of the beer to the carboy, but not all of it. 

Helping the system do its work
Chilling the wort

While all this was happening, I could see his face with that expression that says, "This is not happening -to me-". But it was happening, and I was smart enough not to say anything that could add more stress. At least I think so. I offered help every now and then, but I didn't mess with him. By this time Libby was sleeping, by the way. I didn't get on his way whenever he was walking, and I just prayed for him, I mean, what else could I do? He knows his system, there was nothing I could do.

I prayed that God would give him patience to work through this unfortunate event. That Emerson would have perseverance, diligence, and that God would give him wisdom to solve the problem. I also told God I felt like an idiot for praying about beer, but that I knew that He cared about everything in our lives. See, during this time, there was something happening, there were values being revealed, there was a story of a great man at work, solving a problem. 

I know most of the people who read my blog -if any followers other than my husband- sometimes laugh, and say, "Ohhh", or "Ahhh, that's cute". But I don't care about that, I mean, it's nice to know that maybe someone feel encouraged or whatever after reading something I wrote, but I don't mean that for this post.

This post is about a life lesson, a lesson for my children.  

Dear Libby and Baby,

I am very thankful that you will not get to know the Mom I could have been. What I mean is that every day I thank God for reaching out to me, and find my heart. You will only know the mom I am with the help of Jesus. And although I won't be the perfect mom, I can assure you that following Him has made a difference in my world, and it will make a difference in yours. 

Most of my life growing up, I dealt with negative feelings and emotions. I still have low tolerance to frustration, still sometimes I feel discouragement wanting to get a hold of  me, but I am getting better at thinking positive. Hopefully by the time you read this, I will have conquered those struggles in my life. I tell you this because I was taught a lesson by your Dad that night. Your dad will never quit on you or me. Never.

Watching him deal with a clogged tool made me think of how my reaction would have been if I had been in his shoes. I would have probably stop trying after ten minutes. Do not get me wrong. I was praying for your Daddy, I asked God to help Him, but nothing was really happening; the pump always worked, but the dip tube was still clogged. There was a point when I actually thought about telling him that he had tried enough, that he also needed to learn when to quit. But I was able to shut my mouth. I knew that wasn't what Dad needed to hear. 

I couldn't care less about his beer, to be honest. I love his beer, but for me this meant more than beer... I saw a man fighting for something that was very important for him. I saw your Dad being self controlled and remaining in control of a situation that could have angered him very much, because up to this point his processes in brewing had always been perfect.

But Daddy kept his cool. Of course he was stressed out, but he never let discouragement overcome him. He was never afraid, he knew what to do. When you were children we began praying that your Daddy would become the spiritual leader of this house, and that he would never give away to fear. Do you remember? We wrote that prayer in our log on May 2, 2012. God is answering that prayer day by day. 

If he fought for his beer, children, could you imagine how much you mean to them? Could you imagine how he would fight for you, or for Mommy? Could you grasp how much he loves us? You will see it with time. You will get to see his determination, and his love for you. You will get to know your Daddy, and love him for who he is, and realize how right I am in saying he is the best dad in the whole world.


The yeast looked healthy the next day. There was no foul smell, like bacteria, after three days, and three days is a very good time for bacteria to show up, if it were present. If the beer is good, as usual, Daddy still will compete.What's bad, though, is that if f Dad wins, he will never be able to reproduce that same beer again :)))

God did answer that morning prayer in many ways, far above my imagination as you can see. Not only did we spend a wonderful time together with Libby and Baby (in my belly), but we also got to spend this stressful time together. I guess those are the things you never forget. 

Emerson, thank you for always showing me what a great man your are, thank you for loving me as you do, and thank you for being the Daddy you are. God, I thank you for my husband. 

Mess after the stress
Wort getting into the carboy

June12, 2012. Angry Daddy posing

Daddy, by the way, your gifts are in places that you are never really in much contact with on a daily basis.

Hints:  One is in the bedroom, the other one is in the living room, and the third one is on the bookshelf.

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