Thursday, February 16, 2017

Pick up lines

A week ago, I had a rare morning to myself.  After getting the older two on the bus, my mom came to pick up Gracie to go along to bible study with her. I have to say, it's the cutest thing to hear little Gracie girl talk about her teachers at bible study, and hear her singing songs she has learned there. I love that she loves going!

I was supposed to have a meeting, but at the last minute, it got canceled. So there I was. A morning without kids, and no plans. I have to confess, I didn't have a clue what to do with myself. I mean, I can make a list a mile long, but where to start?! What should I do to make the most of the time? I'm sure there's about a million things I could have done at home, but I opted to drop by Goodwill. As usual, it was raining. And as I pulled into the parking lot, I saw a man standing by his old van with the hood up and jumper cables attached to his battery. His van had been backed in, so the front was easily accessible. But in a full parking lot, no one was stopping to offer assistance. I parked nearby and walked over. Nope, no one had offered to help and yes! he would love it if I would pull my van up to help. I warned him that I had no idea how to attach the jumper cables, but at least my van was working.

He told me how he had recently picked up his (rickety) old van and how it would be great for road trips. He confessed to leaving the lights on, killing the battery. He asked how I liked my van. He got his van started, thanked me, and I re-parked my van then headed in the store.

When I came back out and was pulling away, I noticed a little orange paper tucked into my side mirror. I've read enough warnings on Facebook and whatnot about how papers on the windshield can be a trap to get you out of your car, so I kept driving. When I got home, I pulled the completely soaked paper out and got a good laugh.

Here's what the paper said: "Hi - are you a single ladie? If so plz text or call me. I would like a pretty friend like you. Thanks for the jump!" (name and phone number were also included)

Oh.My.Goodness.  Having a guy give me his number is a first for me!  It's never happened before. I already have the best guy out there, so this poor guy won't be hearing from me. But he sure provided me with a good laugh. I mean really. Did he miss the car seats? Did it not register that it was MomForce1 I was driving? It's a classic mom-mobile. Single? About as far from it as you can get. But I guess this mama of three who drives a minivan has still got it. (Or finally has it!) Hahaha! 😂

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentine's Day and Wonder Woman

A lot of days I feel like I have nothing to show for my day. I feel like I spin my wheels. Loads of laundry. Meals cooked and devoured (or left untouched on the plate).  Rooms cleaned up only to be destroyed again. At the end of the day, I'm not entirely sure what filled my day and there is certainly nothing visible to show for it.

But today was a different story. Today I felt like Wonder Woman.

You know, I picked up a Wonder Woman shirt at a clothing swap once. I kept it for a brief time, but decided it wasn't a keeper for my closet. Now I wish I had hung onto it. I mean, even on mediocre days, sometimes you need to feel like you *could* conquer the world if you wanted.  But alas, the shirt is no longer in my possession.

And I digress.

Today, I got up extra early to frost the heart shaped sugar cookies I baked after the kids went to bed. Because sweet little Seeet Pea told her tracer I was bringing cookies for the class today. Uuummmm.... That extra hour was used so well deflecting all the morning's disasters. But not frosting cookies. So I got the older two on the bus and headed to MOMS group. Fortunately, it went off without a hitch. 41 ladies and a fabulous speaker, who is also a friend. Good thing that went well because I followed that with a trip to the grocery store before heading home for lunch. And throwing together dinner in the crockpot. And frosting the cookies. After all, Gracie and I were set to volunteer in Sweet Pea's class at 2pm. Oh yes, we crammed all that in before 2pm! Oh, and I had the privilege of fighting off a turkey while trying to toss all our trash from MOMS this morning too.  Nothing like having a farm with rogue animals that run free right next to the church!


After volunteering at the school, I managed to get valentines goodies together for my kiddos, as well as dessert for after dinner. They we raced back to school to pick up the bigger kids and head to piano. Then once again, we dashed out the door, but this time to head home. I fished the rest of dinner as fast as I could and got the kids dressed. Planning a fancy dinner for Valentine's Day was a fun idea,, but probably not ideal on the same day as piano lessons. All in all, I'd say it was a success though. We all dressed up, and I even managed to get the same dress on that I wore for my first valentines date with my husband.  That was a shocker. Of course the kids thought it was awesome. Fancy clothes, a table cloth, china dishes, and flowers. Yummy food, presents, and chocolate pudding in goblets.

Crazy day, but it paid off!

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Hope

A pessimist sees the glass as 1/2 empty.
An optimist sees the glass as 1/2 full.

Hope is seeing Who holds the glass.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Dear Gracie girl

Sweet Gracie girl, you are growing up so darn fast.  Today, as I listened to you praying at lunchtime, I heard you pronounce all the words correctly.  Even your "f" sound.  No more "plip-plops" and "ping-ers."  You can say flip-flops, floor, food, Father, and fingers just fine.  If I call you my baby love, most of the time you correct me and tell me you are my big girl now.  You tell me that Sweet Pea can be my baby love if I really still need one.  You sleep in the same room as your sisters and definitely want to be one of the big kids.  You are nearly as eager as your sisters to run down the street to play with friends.  And this morning I noticed that you actually put your shoes on the right feed without help!

You know a ton of songs and sing all day.  I think one of my favorites right now is "Good morning God, this is your day.  I am your child, show me your way."  When I asked you about this song I had never heard before, you proudly told me that you learned it at bible study.  You love going to bible study (BSF) with Grammie!  And you are learning verses in Awana.  A few weeks ago, you even asked if I wanted to see Jesus.  You quickly lifted your shirt and pointed at your chest, saying to me, "See? He's right here, Mama!"  I love your sweet heart!  May you never lose that tenderness for Jesus.

In spite of you being the caboose to our family and not getting a ton of help on counting and ABC's, you have learned to count to 10 and recognize your numbers.  And to my surprise, last week, you correctly identified multiple ABC's.

You're crazy tall for a three year old (just like your sisters!).  And your hair reaches your waist since it's never been cut and you don't want it touched.  It looks gorgeous in braids though! You are an amazing little mama to the legions of baby dolls in this house.  It's not uncommon for a doll highchair to be found next to your seat at the table, or a baby strapped to your back as you go about your day.  The doll stroller you got for Christmas was a slam dunk.  You had the best reaction when you opened it, knowing immediately it was the one from Costco that you've been eyeing for months.

You are growing so fast.  Sometimes I just want to rewind the clock and gather you into my lap as a little baby.  I want you to snuggle in and fall asleep on my chest.  But the days are going to keep flying by.  So I better hurry up and cherish each of these precious moments.

Playing "Sandwich Stacker" together

Friday, November 11, 2016

Library Disaster

This summer, I was reminded of just how important our words are. With social media, I think we often forget to sensor our words as much as we should. And maybe because of that, we also forget to sensor our words as much as we should in public too.

We go to the library a couple times a month usually. I've taught my kids that the library is a place where we use our quiet voices. I don't care how loud the other kids there are being, we will use our quiet voices. Even little Gracie girl, who just turned three a couple weeks ago, approaches the library with whispers only. 

So when we were half way through checking out our stack of books and she started screaming about who knows what in rage, I was caught off guard. But I knew I had a couple choices. 1. Walk away. Just leave all the books there and run. 2. Finish checking out the rest of our pile, then grab them all and leave.

I opted for option two. I was at least half way done, and when I attempted to pick her up, she screamed more. So I figured  I'd just be quick and get us out. Well, apparently I wasn't quick enough. As I finished up, a library volunteer approached and informed me more than once that people werecomplaining. A lot of people were complaining. And that it was obvious trying to take three children to the library was more than I could handle. She suggested they if I really felt it necessary to return with my children, I probably needed to bring others to help me with them. 

Ugg. Really? 

I informed her as nicely as I could muster that we do visit regularly and have not had this issue in the past. I also assured her that we were leaving. I was, after all, actively picking up our stack of books when she approached. She did offer that on another day, she would take my little girl out of the library and read to her elsewhere. 

Umm..thanks but no thanks. 

It's funny. I was feeling really good about my mom abilities that day. I had arrived at the library with an extra child in tow. (The mom met us there.) All the children were well behaved and relatively quiet. They were certainly not the loudest ones there. At least until I was half way through checking out. 

But it wasn't like I was ignoring what was happening. I had tried unsuccessfully to calm her down, so I was trying to get us out of there as fast as possible. Trust me, I wanted out of there as fast as possible too! I knew the screaming was disruptive and wanted to do whatever I could to end it as quickly as I could. 

I guess we don't always see things as others do. The volunteer sure didn't see where I was coming from. And I'm sure there are plenty of times when I don't understand where others are coming  from. It's a good reality check for me.   I so often don't know the situation, so I need to refrain from judging. Both verbally and mentally. I don't want my kids to see me do to others what this woman did to me. They saw how it affected me, which was important. They saw how broken I was afterwards. And hopefully that will help them learn how important their words are too.

May I love well, no matter who the person may be or what their situation might look like. 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

To Room 7

This week, Honeygirl gets to be "Star of the Week" in her class.  She got to take a poster she made about herself and share something special from home with her class.  She got to share a poem, and chose who she got to eat lunch with.  And her teacher asked that I write a letter to the class about how special she is to me.  So I don't forget, here's what I wrote, and I mean every word.


Dear Room 7,

There are so many things I could tell you about Honeygirl!  She really is a special girl.  She’s funny, a hard worker, smart, artistic, a good leader, and caring.  If you need to visit the health room, she’ll walk you there.  If you don’t have someone to play with, she’ll probably play with you.  If you need some encouragement, she’s really good at giving kind words.  Need help with your art project?  You’re in luck! She loves art! And if you’re having a hard day, chances are she will pray for you, as well as make you a card.  She’s really great at stuff like that. 

But I also wanted to tell you some things about her that you might not know.  She loves tacos.  I mean, really loves tacos.  And watermelon.  But not together.  She has a huge extended family.  There are about 50 people just on her dad’s side of the family, and she loves to spend time with all of them.  She’s the oldest kid in her family, and the oldest of all her cousins.  She’s super at helping with all the younger kids.  And they all love her! When she grows up, she might want to be a nurse like her grandma and me (her mom).  And if she does become a nurse, I think she would be excellent at it because she has such a compassionate heart for others, and is intrigued by medical stuff.  But if she chooses to do something else, that’s totally fine too.  Lastly, after getting some new clothes, she went through her closet and picked some things to give to the kids at an orphanage her aunt and uncle work at.  She told me that since she had received some things, she thought she could share some of her other clothes with the kids who live there.  I love that she cares so much about others and is willing to share.  At our house, we talk about shining for Jesus, which really means showing love to everyone.  I think Honeygirl does a great job at that. 

When I asked her this week what she’s thankful for, she told me she’s thankful she gets to be in Mrs. S's class this year.  You know why?  Because she loves being in the only split class at your school with all of you.  I’m so glad you get to spend the year in the same class as Honeygirl!


Love, Honeygirl's mom

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Egged

To the person who egged my house last night:

I understand. You were hanging out with friends and looking for something to do. It was late and no one was making the best choices anymore. Someone suggested egging some houses. Maybe you were even the instigator. But somehow you found yourself walking down the street, eggs in hand. I don't know what made you pick our house. I'm guessing there's a pretty good chance you have no idea who we are. Or our neighbor across the street that you also egged. I'm guessing you didn't really put any thought into what you were doing. Because if you did, you might have though about who lives in the houses you egged. You make have stopped to think that while you are a teenager, not all houses are filled with teens. In fact, the houses you chose both have small children. One has a baby that hasn't been sleeping well. That was the baby's window you hit, by the way. The other house- my house- also has small children. And unfortunately, the littlest had woken up just minutes before you happened by. I had just taken her back to her room when she heard a terrifying noise. She's already fearful of "punder" (thunder) and windy nights. But last night we heard something repeatedly hitting the window. Was someone breaking in during the night? Her little self was shaking in terror. I quickly figured out we had been egged on both upstairs windows (and in the morning we discovered the other  place you hit), but no amount of reassurance was adequate for my 3 year old. She wouldn't leave my side. And even curled into my side, under my protective arm, she continued to shake. All day she talked about whether someone was going to come back with eggs to get her. She doesn't want to sleep at home because she is scared. And I get to be the one dealing with this.

My husband and I got up this morning, cleaned the windows, cleaned the screens, and picked egg shells from all the little nooks and crannies they were in. My husband climbed on the roof to spray off all the eggs. And we will pay to replace the screen you put a big hole in. But I will also repeatedly try to reassure my little one that no one is going to get her and that she is safe. Because she has a steel trap of a memory, I'm not sure how long it will take for her to let it go.

I'm sure if you knew all this before, there would be no way you would have egged our house. There would be no way it would have still seemed worth it. But you didn't know and you didn't think. So do me a favor- next time, take a moment to think about your actions.  Think about how it could affect someone.  Hopefully, it will prevent you from doing something like this again.

And for the record, of everyone on the block, I'm still glad it was us. I'm glad you didn't get the neighbor in a wheelchair. It would have been really tough on that elderly person to clean up the mess.  I'm glad you didn't get the neighbor with heart problems and a very large dog. You better be glad you didnt get them too! Maybe someday you'll have a family if your own. A few little kiddos. And a careless teenager will egg you. And then you'll know. You'll know what really happened the night you egged a few houses with friends.

-the mom of 3 little kiddos