March 31, 2009

Running Around



Well I thought this talk would come much later on, but it has happened. I had to sit my daughter down this week and tell her in no uncertain terms that she needed to "stop running around with that boy." He has not been a good influence in her life. Her behavior has been unacceptable. The running around started a few weeks ago and she has refused to listen to her authorities.  She sees him, and her urge is irrepressible, soon they are both running around together. Up she goes and follows his lead. She's a total follower! Where did I go wrong? I feel like a failure of a parent. Perhaps it's her father's 6 month absence that has made such a difference in her life lately. She needs that strong male figure in her life. Maybe she has 'Daddy issues'. This boy isn't really bad per se, but he just lacks direction and self control. I knew it had gotten out of control when her teacher spoke to me last week. "We have a problem with your daughter" she began, and my heart sank. My innocent little daughter- caught running around! Luckily I think we have seen an end to it. After my talk this week she has stopped the running around. When I spoke to her teacher she said things had improved. The influence of the bad boy was not there this week to tempt her however. So I have to brace myself for next week when he is back from vacation and she will either fold under the temptation or ignore him as she has been told repeatedly to do.

The church's nursery (for 18mo-3yr olds) can be a complicated place for a 2 year old.


March 28, 2009

9 More Days


What's up?  I will tell you what.  9 more days until T is expected to come home from Iraq.  That is exciting news.  Only one more Sunday without him.  Sunday in my opinion is the hardest day of the week to be without a husband.  I have to fly solo getting kids ready for church, we have to sit strategically on the bench so that there is less child irritations (FYI- Big Boy has to sit next to me and the end, yet I have to make it seem like it happened by chance or he gets all defensive-it's a delicate game to have to play),  I have to do all my churchy duties in primary and get asked by several members "how much longer until your husband comes home anyways?"  It's worse than being 3 weeks overdue and having people say "haven't you had that baby YET?" I have been in that situation before so yes, I can judge.  Then there is the lingering time in the afternoons on Sundays where I have to decide how involved a dinner to make for just the kids and I.  Then I have to choose between a nap or actually doing stuff with the kids.  Doing stuff is obviously the better choice but frankly by that time of day I am all for putting in Vegi tales and calling it nap time.

We have several 'honey-do' items for T to deal with when he gets home.  I'm told that doing stuff around the house is like therapy for the newly returned soldier.  So here's what you can look forward to T...  The back yard needs some clearing out from winter's storms.  We (you) should probably re-seed some areas of grassy baldness back there as well.  This means we (you) will have to hook up the water hoses to water the grass seed.  The hoses were disconnected and the outside pipes flushed and shut off to prevent freezing during the winter.  A neighbor helped me do that and I have no remembrance of how to reverse the process by myself.  The pond needs attention- 5 frogs were found dead today(!).  The taxes are still not completed-sigh...  I really tried, but it's not my thing.  "Fiddle dee dee!  Those figures just slip right outta my head when I am wearing a new bonnet." (okay I am not wearing a bonnet).  The closet door in Big Boy's room needs attention.  There's a crack in the wall in the basement.  The computers are acting slow.  The garage door has a boo boo.  And most importantly there is a family that needs some big time TLC!!

March 27, 2009

Legacy



Usually T makes all the derby cars around these parts.  This year was different.  I would like to thank the Village it took to raise this pinewood derby car.  Tanks (whoops!) I means Thanks a heap to our Home Teacher for cutting it out, for the team of helpers at den meeting last night who helped with the weigh in and with the attaching of the treads because my child size hands couldn't squeeze out the hot glue fast enough before it would cool and dry.  Thanks to Grandpa T who used his machinist shop to grind down wheels, and straighten out the axels.  Thanks to Grandma T for sending them to us in time.  Thanks to our friend Dave who placed the wheels and did such special things to them that he kept it secret from me!  He was just the guy for the job.  I am responsible for the paint job and silly putty turret with pen cannon.  Little Boy did the brainstorming and the sanding.  Just what the boys in this household always do (an not much more-sorry that's all they do folks).

As you can see it turned out great!  Not sure if it's a winner but there are a whole lot of people I can blame it on if it stinks : )

Just take a look at all the cars in this house that our newest addition has to live up to?  A legacy of speedsters.  Lots of fond memories go along with each one.  But this is my first pinewood baby.  Delivered with a lot of help and love.

March 25, 2009

Dog Gone

T had a Grandma who has passed away who we referred to as Grandma Silly. Grandma Tilly was her original nick name, but one time my kids saw her without her hair tied back in it's usual bun, her hair was sticking out in all directions in a gray afro.  Since then they called her Grandma Silly. Made sense.  

She had all kinds of funny quirky sayings.  "You're a peach of a pear!"  She said to us, pinching my cheek, upon our first meeting.  She'd ramble on for hours it seemed and then ask her husband to say a word or two.  He'd always say the same line which was "Generally speaking, women are generally speaking!"  Another goodie was "When we were first married we had nothing- and we still got it!"

Somewhere there is a book being complied of all Grandma Silly's sayings, but one I hope makes the top of the list is this one: "When life gets hard, God sends us humor to lighten the load."

That happened for me today as I remembered this recent analogy sent to me by my beloved.  Here is what he said that kept me smiling all day...

Well, sweetie pie I'm gettin' real anxious to see you. The minutes crawl by like a two-legged dog - one front leg, one back leg - toppling over with every step. That little doggie is tenacious though and won't give up. He's been hobbling throught the desert for 6 months to see you and he's almost there. He'll be pretty tired and dirty (maybe even stinky) when he finally arrives but he'll be happy and (hopefully) halitosis-free

I tell you, who wouldn't love a man like that?  Here is a photo he sent me of the dog that must have inspired this sad canine story.


March 24, 2009

Missing Him


Tonight was rough. I didn't want to make dinner. I'm tired of never really having a break. Dinner plans had already gone from plan A (home made au gratin potatoes with ham) to plan B (omelets) and Baby Girl wouldn't stop crying at my feet. Then the kids were mean to each other at the dinner table and one boy had to be removed from the situation. He angrily called me a name on his way to his room. My mood went from bad to dark. Suddenly our family night plans were not going to happen. No real time anyways. I pretty much shuffled my way through the evening getting things done, but there was no happiness to be had anywhere. Laundry mocked me instead of patiently waiting to be folded. I realized late that there is both an orchestra performance during the school day tomorrow, and I have a doctor's appointment. So this will make another concert that I cannot make it to. I argued some more with my son over clothing not being found for the concert. Wished that I could just go to bed and not deal with things any more.

I need someone to help me with things and keep me company. An adult to share things that happen to me on a daily basis with. 20 minutes on the phone every day just doesn't keep me warm at night. I try to look on the bright side, but tonight was definitely a night to put away and start fresh tomorrow.

I am lucky to know what I am missing. There's a bright side for you! I know re-adjusting will also be difficult. Or so they say. Tonight though I am wishing for a speedy speedy delivery. A speedy speedy speedy speedy delivery of the man who's been away for far too long. I wonder if Mr McFeely can do anything for me there..


PS: The first photo at the top is of the housing T is living in on the military base in Iraq.


March 23, 2009

A Tale of Two Projects


So this week was crazy!  Big Girl and Little Boy had two of the oddest school projects due on the same day.  Why oh why do the teachers not get together and plan a little better?!  I hate it when the stars mis-align like this and my kids (aka I) have two big things due on the same day.  Little Boy had to prepare an oral presentation with a puppet (!?) on a historical figure of his choosing.  He chose FDR.  My first question was if FDR was the Roosevelt in the wheelchair or not, cause how in the heck am I going to pull that one off (puppet wise).  Luckily he wasn't that Roosevelt.  Side note: they were related though.  FDR used crutches for some of his life.  We made a puppet sans crutches.  I pretty much took that project over since my son doesn't sew or use hot glue guns at this point in his 10 years.  Gotta teach that kid some crafty skills soon!  When I finished it up I showed it to him and he told me it was "beast!"  (Funny because I recently got called a beast by a fellow blogger- she didn't mean it in the nice way my son did though- both times I laughed... totally beast man!).  

Then poor Big Girl had a bad experience with her cow costume.  She was assigned to dress as a nursery rhyme character.  She chose the cow from the classic "Hey Diddle Diddle".  Unfortunately it wasn't only the little dog who laughed in this scenario.  She was laughed at (and mooed at) for being the only one in costume on the wrong day (Mom messed up! I dressed her up a day early).  The sad part was I had so much going on with FDR puppet and volunteering to help with cub scouts the night before that I had been sewing the spots for the cow on her white clothing until midnight the night before.  Joke's on me there I suppose.  Luckily she had left her lunch on the car seat that day, thus making me hurry it to her before the bell even rang and I was able to take her home to change and calm down a bit.  She was crying when I got there.  Since I volunteer on Tuesdays there the kindergartners all know me.  I made it a point to tell the teacher on those unthinking kids (names being withheld at the time of reporting but looking at those taunting mooers who made my little calf cry with my seriously-disappointed-in-you look).  The next day when she bravely re-wore her cow costume she opted for leaving the horned headband in the backpack until show time.  That's my practical heroic girl!

Yes, it was the best of times it was the worst of times.  I am just glad it's now all in the past.


THE END



March 22, 2009

Measuring Up


My husband's deployment has been one of the toughest things I have had to deal with in our married lives.  I knew it would be difficult going into this.  However one thing I didn't anticipate was the ways in which we would grow.  Another military wife put it to me this way.  She said there were things that they learned from her husband's time in Iraq that they couldn't have learned any other way.  When she said this to me my thoughts were something along the lines of "Wow!  She is amazing... I could never do that and be so positive still"  Her husband was over there during a time of much more violence.  Her faith that he would be protected was simply inspiring.  I felt ashamed that when I looked deep inside myself I couldn't honestly say that I would be able to measure up in the same way, and it scared me.  

T will be home the first week in April (we think- with the Army, you never really know until you see the whites of his eyes).  As I look back on the experiences and see what trials we have overcome I am amazed!  This really has been eye opening.  I am finding it hard to really put down into words here.  I wouldn't wish deployment on any family.  It sucks.  But if you want to look at the glass as half full (and I DO!) then here are some of the ways I am listing tonight where we have improved for which I am so grateful.  

1-We are closer as a family
2-We really appreciate each other more
3-We are more independent
4-We are more dependent on one another
5-The children help me more
6-The boys are all expert diaper changers
7-Big Boy gets himself up in the morning (huge!)
8-Things matter less to me 
9-People matter more
10-We have learned to accept extra help from the outside
11-We are more humble
12-We read the scriptures more
13-Our prayers are more meaningful
14-We get along in church better
15-We have felt protected (We only got sick once!)
16-I can make a pinewood derby car
17-The kids cherish time alone with Mom
18-The kids do homework independently
19-There is love at home (except when there isn't)
20-I can make dinner without T at home to hold the baby for me
21-Everyone helps me cook in the kitchen
22-Kids thank Mom for making dinner (every time)
23-We've learned we can be happy even when life gets hard

March 20, 2009

PPPPPMS

Here's a funny little video for you. When Baby Girl first asked me what these were I told her they were 'napkins'.  (I am always trying to be completely truthful with my children even when it comes to sensitive topics such as feminine hygiene and where babies really do come from.  I also keep it on their level though- I am talented like that). "What?! Napkins?!" She asked. Thinking, I was surmising, that these were unlike any napkins she had seen before. She started calling them wipes. A common misconception I suppose. So I set her straight. "They are like napkins for your bottom when you grow up" I followed up with "We'll chat more about this when you are about 13."

So today when she found the 'napkins-for-one's-bottom' in the drawer, she declared they were hers. She is such a bossy little two year old. Just today she insisted on grape juice instead of OJ even though she had clearly asked for OJ first and was only unsatisfied once she had seen the 2nd grapey option. So being the patient, kind, reverent and thrifty parent that I am I poured her a 2nd cup of juice (this time grape- my personal fave btw), and thought I would just stick the first one in the fridge for later. Now she was upset about the cup going in the fridge. No she didn't want the juice inside it, she wanted me to put grape juice into the original cup. ARGH! She had just gone too far. No WAY was I giving in to that one. I said no and she hung her head so low that I thought perhaps her chin was attached with velcro to her chest and cried her way to her room. Perhaps PMS is coming early for her? I'll be on the look out!

r video

March 18, 2009

Always After Me Lucky Charms

Do love the cereal. Don't buy it because I am opposed to all the sugar in my kid's diet so early in the morning and I HATE it when they pick out the marshmallows and eat them without the healthy frosting coated cereal part.

Forgot to buy some this year. Had green pancakes instead. Didn't get a great reaction from overly sleepy children who had just been drug out of bed to a leprechaun surprise!

Ah that's just my luck!




March 17, 2009

Weak Minded


As I drove through the downtown traffic of Washington DC this evening I was reminded of the way things were when we lived in Seoul (traffic wise).  Actually DC traffic doesn't even hold a candle to the perilous times on the road each and every day in Korea.  But as we played the 'will we get through the light this time game, and on the 3rd round of light changes we still didn't get through, I had to remind myself of the patience I was lacking and to just hang in there- My driving days in Seoul did come to mind.

I commented to my nephew, who we were taking out to see the monuments, that this traffic reminded me of our days in Seoul.  I loved how the preparation book for the traffic test put things bluntly for us Americans.  It said "The traffic in Seoul is compared to a river.  The current is all moving in the same general direction without specific guidelines"  Cutting someone off is just a way of survival in the driving world.  You have to drive like that to stay afloat.  If you choose not to run the red lights you would most likely be rear ended.  You, who follow the rules are a hazard to the system!  There are surprisingly few accidents because everyone is on guard at all times for the next guy to make the craziest move ever.  Uber-defensive driving!  It works people. 

There is also another funny thing we used to point out when chewing out drivers along our merry way.  The traffic rule book also clearly stated that "One may have his/her license revoked upon proof that said person is a weak-minded lunatic."  Their words, not mine.  After a weeks worth of adjusting to traffic conditions there you begin feeling a bit week minded I don't mind telling you.  But once I had adjusted I just began yelling out the windows.. "You weak minded lunatic!  If I spoke the language you would be so reported"  This had great results in the 'teaching my kids to like living in a foreign country' department. 

So after a long day today, toss in some traffic, a wrong turn across the bridge with fighting kids, and a lengthy walk back to the car in the rain where I kept being challenged at every turn in the bend as to my state of mind I must say to one and all.  I am definitely not weak minded.  Possibly a lunatic though. 

blogging while tired

I am so tired right now.  I really could use a nap.  However, it' s my day to watch kids.  Tomorrow is her day.  Yeah for her day!  Not that the kids are not adorable, they are.  Although I could do without the screaming.  Watching someone else's kids always reminds me why I chose to stay at home to raise my children instead of working for money.  So my kids could be cared for by someone who loves them regardless of their quirks.  

It's amazing how slow those last 30 minutes can go sometimes.  

March 13, 2009

Request for more video

At the risk of making my husband totally homesick I am posting some only slightly dated material.  And why is it that I always pull out the flip camera at breakfast time?  Who knows...

The other reason for posting more videos is that he asked me to.  Plus I think we have worked out the technical glitches via phone support from Iraq today and I want to test things out.  Sorry if these bore the reader who may not know me and my kids well enough to care.  Feel free to skip. These are for T.  Miss you sweetie!

PS scroll down to a couple posts ago.  There is another one of Baby Girl saying "I love ME?"

PPS watch for Middle Boy 'dribbling' his ball before he shoots.  I asked him what the heck he was doing there off camera and he told me he was dribbling.  This was on one of his recent sick days and I brought this forgotten birthday present out of hiding to pass the time.  Now everyone has lost interest.  It was good while it lasted I guess...

video video
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March 12, 2009

Random Report

What a wacky day it was!  After getting kids off to school I cleaned house and got ready for a meeting I had at 10:30. Then I was frustrated with slow uncooperative computers and wished for T to be around to help.  Only 3 more weeks (I know- it's been three weeks for what seems like a couple weeks now.  The date has been pushed back a bit.  No I don't want to talk about it...).

Posting that last video of Baby Girl took me all morning but I finally did it.  Not sure how, just persistence I guess.  Then I was running late for my meeting when T called (an hour or so later than usual).  I couldn't even talk to him because I missed my turn and almost caused an accident slowing down to find a place to get off the road and back on track.  Don't you just hate tailgaters?  My Dad was an awful tailgater.  I'm grateful nothing bad happened.  So I am almost at my meeting and I called because I was running about 5 minutes late at this point, they informed me that I was later than I thought.  About an hour and 5 minutes to be exact, and they were just finishing up.  Whoopsie!  So as I am driving home I am thinking what else do I need to get done now that I am out already.  I have been needing to get to a make up counter for some time now for foundation.  It's, you know- the foundation of any good make-up job, so I don't skimp on cheap brands when it comes to this.  I buy the department store variety.  It lasts and lasts too.  So it's/I'm worth it.  Then I look in the rear-view and Baby Girl is asleep!  At 10:30am?  Wacky!  She naps at 2:00 usually.  Okay- change that plan.  Lucky for me though because I came home just in time to get these at the door.

 

Aren't they fabulous?  The card reads 'see you very soon.'  I haven't had so many flowers in our entire marriage of 17 years.  Yet while we are apart I have gotten them once a month on the anniversary of the day he left.  What an awesome guy!  I really do love flowers.  Thank you sweetheart!  It gave me the push I needed today after the bad news that I need to hang tight for one extra week than planned. I am just hoping by some miracle that he won't have to miss the pinewood derby on the 31st.  Is it lame to pray fervently for such a thing?  Why not?

I love me

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I am so glad she has good self esteem.  Sorry for posting another video so soon, I am trying to develop my talents before they are buried under a bushel.  (aka I might forget how to do it unless I practice).
video

March 11, 2009

Baby Signs


Baby girl can sign.  Want to see? Click on the video above.  She has been doing it since she was 7 months.  Now she is two.  She talks more than she signs now and that makes me happy and sad.  I love hearing her talk, but I liked the secrecy signing provided us.  We'd be in the waiting room of a pediatrician's office and I'd see a fish tank and do the sign for fish.  She'd nod.  I'd do a fishy face and sign "mommy fish" and she'd giggle.  No one knew the joke but us.  Awesome!  Also awesome was when she was able to tell the pediatrician where her pain was (in her ear) at 14 months, thus diagnosing her own otitis media.  Actually she told Grandma who was baby sitting her for a week while I was out of town.  She told me on the phone what sign she was doing and I told her what that sign meant.  So it was a group effort.  Still amazing to me (and the pediatrics clinic at U of I hospital). 

The other kids learned to sign along with us.  And by saying we sign I mean we all know about the same 50 signs- we are by no means fluent.  So now in church I can sign to the kids 'no, sit-down, stop, share, or you're dead!'  That dead part is really Christ-like in church.  I'm glad the Bishop's wife taught me that one.  Well I hope you enjoy the video.  I have been trying for almost an entire day to get it to work.  The computers are suffering from T's absence lately.  We all need him to come home.  

March 10, 2009

Tales of an over active imagination


I am not sure about you, but as a child I was pretty sure my parents had kidnapped me from Samantha Stevens, my REAL mother.  Any day now she was going to fly in, twitch her button nose and we would be outta there baby!  I tried twitching my own nose to call her to me many times.  She abandoned me and never came back though.  What a witch.  

Then there was the time that I wanted to look more asian.  I thought if I held my eyes up in a slanted position long enough that they would actually stay there.  The same principle would apply if you made the pig nose with your hands upside down on your face (thumbs pushing up the nose, pinkies pushing up the eyes). If you did that long enough, your face would stay that way.  Or so I was told.  Imagine my surprise when I found out that asian women actually go through plastic surgery to have their eyes shaped to look more round, and less asian.  What are they thinking!?



I fervently wished upon stars.  Even during the day (because my brother had told me that stars were still there during the daylight hours)  I would wish for money to drop from the sky.  Or possibly a dolly.  I had been brought up on the idea that faith could move mountains.  Why then could my faith not produce a new Raggedy Ann?  Or that cool Barbie head for practicing make-up on?  Again- I was let down.

I had an overactive imagination when it came to hiding from bad guys should they ever enter my childhood home.  Where were the best places to hide in my rather large home?  (12 bedrooms-not kidding).  Possibly the bomb shelter would be best because of the dumbwaiter alternate escape route.  (also not kidding).  

One night there was a full moon shining in my bedroom window.  We had a very 70's kind of house with large glass ball light fixtures hanging down from cords.  Like this one...


Anyways, the shadow cast from the light fixture above was similar to a large round african american afro.  There happened to be some clothing thrown over a closet door that had been left ajar.  This combined with the afro of unusual size, was arguably a very real likeness to a large black man just standing there silently taking in the scene in my room, waiting for his chance to do whatever he'd come to do.  I didn't want to show fear.  Although my heart was beating out of my chest I managed a calm voice and simply stated that I was armed, and that If he wouldn't harm me, I would not harm him.  I was safe all night long.  We had an understanding.  When the sun rose in the morning, I saw that my observer (not unlike Edward in Twilight) had departed, only to return again on the night of the next full moon.

March 08, 2009

Speaking of Stalkers

Hey- I have been watching my feedjit feed for some time now and I always see someone from Audkland New Zealand on my blog.  You have been reading for a long long time with regularity.  A while back I asked if you were my old friend I once knew who's son was in my son's class here in MD, but then you moved about 5 years ago.  But I can't actually recall if you moved to Australia or New Zealand.  Sorry it's an American-centered thing.  Also a bad memory.  But if it's you Ann- please say hi on my comments or send me an email.  If not?  Who are you!!? It's gonna make me batty.

Where is this blog going?

Ever since my husband deployed to Iraq last October I have built a closer relationship with my blog.  It has become a place for me to go everyday and write about my feelings.  Good and bad.  A place where I can complete something and feel good about it.  How often does a stay at home mother of 5 get to do that?  Not often enough I am telling ya.  My husband, who is always more safety conscious than I am constantly reminds me that you never know who is lurking on your blog and to be careful what you write.  I am less worried.  I think most people out there are harmless and have good intentions.  I wanted more followers.  I would pick one up here and there and feel really cool.  I even created one for my husband so he could comment thinking that my comments would pick up.  No go.  He reads but feels that if he wants to say something to me about what I wrote, he will just, I don't know- say it.  To my face.  Or in our case these days on the phone when he calls me each day.  He is not into the public display of anything.  So you can imagine how much he loved me posting his love letters on my blog.  Not so much.

One day I lost a follower due to some glitch in the system.  I thought I had offended in some way.  I removed myself from his blog.  (Childish).  He instantly commented that he didn't stop following.  (Whoops).  I added myself back again.  Why is it that we bloggers care so much about our blogs and our followers, and our comments.  Why?  Oh why?  I guess I want validation that I am not a rambling idiot of sorts.  (This post isn't helping).

Then I stumbled on a popular blogger the other day who mentioned that she had only been blogging for 2 months.  Her blog has a huge following and I thought to my self.  Wow- she must be some sort bloggy genius.  I commented and asked her what her secret was.  She admitted to spending a lot of time on it in the beginning and to joining up with groups like blog stalkers.  She also leaves between 20-30 comments a day.  I am seriously not going to do that.  No time!  Also part of me wants followers but only the nice kind.  Better still if I actually know them.  An acquaintance of mine recently had to shut down her blog due to an actual stalker of sorts.  For the safety of her kids she got rid of the blog.  Another friend went private due to similar problems.  You don't always want to be so popular.  

So I have come to terms with my 8 little followers (I personally know all but one).  I am happy to have 3-5 (sometimes zero) comments a day.  The blog is fulfilling it's duty for now.  I will not pursue a large crowd following my blog.  It was something I thought would be cool 2 days ago though, and I totally understand the desire behind it.  I just don't want to get to the point where I feel I have put my kids at risk.  And I just can't devote that kind of time to it like some of the pros.  I will continue reading/lurking though, and enjoying all that bloggy love out there to be had.  And please- if you are not a nice person, go lurk elsewhere.


March 07, 2009

AM Rituals


When I was a young girl my mother had some interesting parenting techniques.  At the time I knew nothing else and it seemed perfectly normal.  I was the 10th child in a family of 13 kids, so there were definitely some shortcuts happening that I like to look back on and smile at this stage in my life.  One thing my thinly-spread mother used to do to get in some extra shut eye was to 'set us up' for breakfast the night before. (It was always plain cheerios in our bowls btw). There would be spoons and glasses out as well.   To this day a hot big breakfast is one thing I love dearly in life.  Not enough hot breakfast action as a kid I guess.  I had a brother who was 5 years my senior who would handle the pouring of the milk for us both.  The weird part was that she would pre-pour our orange juice for us.  The NIGHT before.  I guess she didn't feel it spoiled out on our kitchen table overnight.  Drinking it warm didn't bother me.  However, one morning there was a moth who had met his demise in my brother's glass overnight.  Somehow my brother Chris convinced me that it was my duty to switch with him.  We fished out the bug but I couldn't help picturing him as I sipped down the OJ.  Chris also told me something about extra protein.  I look back on this and cringe.  And smile.

The circumstances in my home currently require a bit more effort on my children's part.  I cannot be in all places at all times.  So there are many things I could site here but today I am focusing on our AM ritual.  Before the deployment my teenager had a difficult time awakening in the morning.  He gets up extra early for a scripture study class he takes called seminary.  It's held at our church before high school begins.  They start at 6:00am.  I used to have to get up an extra 15-20 minutes before he needed to actually be awake just to scratch his back or argue with him depending on his mood for the day (or mine).  When T left in October, I had a very hard time sleeping.  I was really sleep deprived and it was really effecting the way I was able (or unable) to cope with being a single parent.  I finally had to lay it out for Big Boy.  "I just can't get up with you in the morning- you're gonna have to fly solo."  No more hot breakfasts to bribe him out of bed.  No more cleaning up his room making lots of noise and verbally reminding him to "get up get up get up!"  I am not a morning person.  Neither is he.  Somehow we have managed to raise the bar for him and he has met it wonderfully.  I tell you, it is nothing short of a miracle.  Last night he had to stay up late memorizing some lines for a class presentation.  I was worried that he wouldn't be able to rise and shine and I offered to help him.  He declined.  He has really grown up.  Although he regularly leaves out the milk, he sometimes eats candy or fruit snacks with his cereal, he leaves all kinds of crap in the butter, but he is doing it.  And in the morning when I hear his stirrings and I roll over on my other side and go back to sleep I am so grateful for this opportunity for growth.

March 04, 2009

That Type


This morning as I was buttering my bagel I noticed something I like to do.  I like to take on the crumbs left behind in the butter and put them on my bagel.  If there's smeared jelly in the butter, I'll take that too!  I am not afraid of a little ABC jelly on my bagel.  I'm no germ-a-phobe. What I am is an esthete.  I care too much what things look like to others.  I don't want the next person (whoever it may be-I wasn't expecting Martha Stewart in any time today, but you never know) to see the crumbs or peanut butter or jam in my butter.  I don't like the way that looks.  Like ghetto, mish-mash, family butter.  Everyone just leaves their messes around here for me to clean up.... EVEN in the butter!  And I just fall into that trap over and over and give a man a fish.  I don't teach anyone to stop messing up the butter, I just absorb it onto my bread of choice, day after day.  But the butter looks great!  

As I spread my crummy butter onto my less than worthy bagel this morning a song came to mind.  That "I'm that type a guy" song by LL Cool J.  What can I say?  I was a teen in the eighties.  I tried to recall the lyrics thinking I could switch them up a bit and insert words about slutty butter and Bimbo bread.  (a little reference from our childhood for you Shauna).  I was thinking "I'm the type a gal, who spreads the crap on her toast.  Why do I do it?  'cause I need therapy the most." 

 I had cause to smile thinking that all I could remember about the real lyrics to that song was something about how someone is the type a guy who gives her money to shop.  What does that say about me?  I must have had big aspirations as a teenager to marry a big spender someday (joke's on me there!).  So I checked out the song lyrics online and I must say this to Mr Cool J.  Shame on you!  That is one naughty song!  How dare you think it's okay to infuse the youth of my day with the idea that one should be looked up to for doing things like- doorbell ditching.  No wonder I turned out this way. 

March 02, 2009

Morning Snow




There had been rumors of a snow storm canceling school today.  Some supersticious kids went to bed with PJs inside out and backwards.  This was one time when I actually was hoping for truth to this story.  Snow days usually mean an extra day's plans down the drain.  Kids home fighting and generally getting on my nerves as I think "I totally shouldn't have to be dealing with kids today- it's Monday!"  But not today.  We are on our second round of sickness now.  Fevers with coughing this time.  Heaven help us.  One of my kids has missed enough school that I fear for his grades since catching up isn't a strong point for this middle schooler.  We need another day off to make up for missed work around these parts.  And we are totally behind on our Netflix watching. Tsk tsk.  For now we can't stop staring at the big box in the front room...

The conversation in the window box went something like this.  "I prayed for no school."  "I prayed for time to organize my room and find my cell phone."  "I prayed for no make up work."

Looks like all our answers came this morning in the form of a storm.  Now I am praying for someone to come by with a shovel and a kind heart.  

March 01, 2009

Missed: A Photo Essay

Carving Pumpkins

Class Programs

Thanksgiving Leftovers

Raking Leaves

Christmas Cookies

Blowing Candles

Baby's Surgery

Kids growing up