Wednesday, November 3, 2010

It's been a long time

So, it's been a long while-- since I have updated this lil blog!!
Don't think I haven't been busy though-- life has gotten pretty crazy!

Alexis started Kindergarten, lost her first tooth and played her first season of soccer!
Jaxen has gone from Buzz Lightyear to Bumblebee and now to Superman.  He is everchanging-- and it is hard for me to keep up with him!

Kyle has gone back to his former company, and will continue his company on the side-- he didn't want to at first, but they gave him an offer he couldn't refuse.  We are glad to be back under company insurance ;)

I can't believe we are 1/3 of the way thru Alexis' first year of school and winter is almost here.  Don't get me wrong, I am excited--but it amazes me how fast time flies. 

She is doing great in school, loves it--and wants to go every single day.  She has gotten a yellow light once, the whole year-for kicking a boy who took her spot.  I had to laugh, b/c he probably deserved it- (no, I didn't laugh in front of her, and I did give her a good talking to-- but, still)

Of course, she lost her tooth just days before her first official school pictures--on a Sunday night.  Luckily, her school pictures turned out beautifully!!  The tooth had been wiggly for days and days--and she was doing her best to eat as many apples as she could to get it out of there.  Finally, it just came out--no tears or anything.  The tooth fairy left her a card and $2. 

The next day at school- she was told by a kid that there was no tooth fairy, and a tooth fairy wouldn't leave her a card!  (I am guessing this is the kid she kicked ;) )

Since, then she decided it was a good idea to cut all of her hair off--and go for a short Kit Kittredge haircut.  She loves it--and I love it--since there are no more tears at brushing it.

Both kids have grown out of their clothes--and I feel like I could fill up a salvation army store w/ the stuff they've grown out of just this year!

For more school news-- Alexis took a throat drop to school w/ her--the non-mentholated- halls breezers ones.  More like candy than medicine.  She thought it would be nice to share--so she did.  I got a call from the school nurse later on, saying any kind of throat drop, even if there  is no medicine in it-is not allowed in the school.   Oops-- who'd have thought my kid would be the Kindergarten drug dealer. 

Jaxen and I are enjoying our time together--and are trying to get out while the weather is still nice.  We've gone to the zoo, met daddy for lunch--and run errands. I am pretty sure the post office knows him by name!

He is also helping me take care of the new puppy, Felicity.  We thought Riley needed a furry friend--and Jaxen loves having 2 puppies to play with. 

OF course, ever since October both kids have begun picking things out of catalogs and commercials to add to their Christmas list.  But, this year I thought it would be a good idea to have them narrow their list down to 3 things.  We shall see how this goes!

Me?  I am staying super busy with the Scrapbooking Blog and the Pink by Design Stamps.  I now have 16 stamp sets out--and that are being sold at my online store and at a few brick and mortar stores and  Our dining room is slowly becoming my crafting area-- since we are going to be doing some remodeling downstairs after the water we got in the basement this summer!

Phew-- I know I missed a lot of fun stories---but, I just wanted to give you a quick "catch-up"

Friday, June 4, 2010

The Black Hole of Technology

So, in this day and age we can stay connected to our friends and family and a simple click of our phone.  We can call, text, twitter or facebook them.  We can write on their virtual wall, to tell them we are thinking of them, when we don't have the time to call or see them in person.

Although, this convenience is nice- it comes at a cost.  The cost varies on how much you rely on "virtual" interactions versus "in-person" interactions.  I personally love the idea of being able to text a friend during nap time when I am trying to be quiet- or facebooking someone who sleeps different hours that I do... but, when those virtual interactions take over the real interactions you could be having with those around you--it stops being a good thing, and becomes a hindrance.

I am guilty of overloading on virtual connections, as much as the next girl.  I have gotten caught up in Family Feud :), and I have even started this blog to give some insight to our family life.  I love having facebook and email access on my phone- and at times, only connect via phone.

Today, this is exactly what became a big, "whoopsie," for me.... I was laying the kids down for a nap, and thought I would catch up on some reading.  I got distracted, and checked my fb via phone.  I remembered that  a friend I went to elementary school, was being induced to have a baby, I thought I would quickly write something on her wall.  (all via my fb page on my phone)

Well, my phone has the handy dandy little feature, that fills in words for you after a couple letters...It used to be called t9 on older phones--not sure what the name of the feature is now...maybe, auto-predict or something.

Anyways, I wanted to type: "Thinking about you, wondering if baby girl is here yet."
However--as I read what I wrote, posted on her wall-- I quickly realized my phone filled in the wrong word...and it said...on her wall...for everyone to read...
"Thinking about you, wondering if baby Hitler is here yet."

Yep.  I called her baby, Hitler in front of the entire FB world.  Well, the phone is nice for some facebook features, and not others.  One that does not work via phone, is DELETE.  Oh, no.  I raced to my nearest computer--and pulled up delete and rewrite this message correctly.  I literally, ran down the stairs, to eliminate this awful message.  I also sent her a message letting her know, what happened, in case she got notifications in her email account....whew.

One thoughtful remark, turned into a horrible a matter of seconds....because of technology, and our "need" for it.  Too often, we forget that in having this vast amount of technology, that we are also giving up little pieces of ourselves.  Our time, our attention, our privacy, our sanity...

Don't get me wrong, I am not one to point fingers with this double-sided sword we created, or call anyone out on this black hole we have jumped into....but, since it is the internet...and the kids are all asleep--I will get on my soapbox.... and.... laugh at myself. 

It's Official

So, as of today, 2 things are official.  I know, you are excited aren't you??

The first thing is: My kids are to the age, where they are going to fight with one another.  Gone are the days of peaceful playing, and sweet gestures.  Oh, I still get those sometimes, but they are interlaced with screams and pinches :).  So, as I learn to gauge when I should step in, and when I should let them work it out--I realized the other officialdom.  (Didn't think that was a word, did you?)

The 2nd is, that I am becoming my parents.  Today, as I stepped in one of those "bickering," moments-- I felt at my wit's end.  They had been at each other for 2 days straight, and I was going crazy (to put it mildly).

So, I did what anyone would do, in my situation...I told them I was tired of them fighting, and that they had to hug until, they wanted to be nice to each other.  Hmmmm..wherever did I get that from?

Oh, yes...I remember many a time, that I had to hug a sibling after fighting with them.
Was it a just punishment?  It didn't kill us, though we were secretly pinching and hugging each other as tight as possible....out of love of course.
Does it work?  Probably not--(Sorry, mom and dad)...I think it just frustrates the kids more, because they do not want to hug each other. You can't force someone to "like" each other.  Because afterall, that is what it is about.  We kids, and my kids love each other--they just have to learn to get along.  Sometimes that takes a year or two--sometimes, 25 or 30.

I made the kids hug today, simply because I just didn't know what else to do. I wanted them to get along, and I felt as if I had tried everything else.  I was going to "make" them get along, whether they liked it or not ;).

So, as I stood there telling them to hug, my 3 year old son, looked at me as if I was crazy.  Maybe I was.  He didn't understand the punishment, and his sister was all too willing to hug him....which made him even more wary.  He didn't even try to get close enough for her to wrap her arms around him.  Instead, he asked for a spanking.  I had to laugh, and I didn't spank him.  He must have thought, that since I was so serious, this must be the worst punishment in the whole entire world!

So, we had a discussion- and I hope that they understood this very important lesson:  When they fight, momma isn't happy, and when momma isn't happy--ain't nobody happy.  Or something like that.

All things aside, I think I have it pretty good--Look, how sweet they are together....

Thursday, May 27, 2010

I have been having so much fun with my Pink Cricut website, I haven't written anything in awhile on here.  That is not to stay the kids and I haven't busy, busy, busy--and enjoying our Spring.  I just have to prioritize.

As a mother, I have learned that other mother's priorities are not the same as mine.  That does not make them wrong, or me right--it just makes us different mothers.  And, I am of the theory, that if we are trying to be a good mom--then we are good moms.  Children (for the most part) are given to their perfect parent...,.not a PERFECT parent--but the perfect parent for them.  All kids are different, and all kids need different styles of parents.

I struggle with this idea a lot...almost daily.  I struggle with trying to be the PERFECT mom- and I worry that I fall short all of the time in my role as a mother. If I read 2 books a day to my kids, I would wish that I had read 3.  If I took them to the park once a week, I would wish for 3x a week....and so, on.  I am never perfect, in my own eyes.  So, I have to remind myself over and over again--that I am perfect for my kids.  They are healthy, smart, loved, well-behaved...and perfect for me.

They challenge me, they are patient with me, they love me unconditionally.

The same goes with other parents we may run into, in our busy lives...we may think they should be at every school function- when they are not.  We might think they don't spend enough time with their kids.  But, we don't know their story, we don't know their struggles or what goes on behind closed doors.  They may be doing their best--and that is EXACTLY what their kids need.

So, I will try to love on my kids a little more everyday- I know that I won't stop worrying about falling short-- But, I will do the best I can, and hope the same for every child out there.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Lovin' Life

Here we are--at a very FUN stage in our kids lives.  We enjoyed them at babies, and sometimes long for those days back, when their coos and smiles were new...but we are SO ready for this stage.  We took the kids to the Farmer's Market yesterday- where theyenjoyed themselves almost as much as we did.  Then we played a little catch in the yard--and then we took them fishing!

Yes, it's crazy- Fishing wouldn't be my first choice of things to do.  But, when it comes out our kids, I want them to try everything-- to have a taste of everything- to experience life at it's fullest.  So, I took my PINK fishing pole (that my sweet husband bought for me), and NEVER fished with it.  :) I was too busy working wtih the kids and their Transformer and Tinker Bell poles.  Sure they got bored, after awhile--and started to play with our dog.  Sure, Jaxen wouldn't touch the worm....And, they were never quiet enough to really be "real" fishermen--but, I enjoyed every moment of this experience.

I told Alexis at one point--that we were trying to catch our lunch--and in the olden days that is what we would have had to do to eat.  She was a little nervous--til I reminded her that I packed us a picnic.  :)

We took a break and cooked hot dogs and brats at the park- where the kids found several little caterpillars.  Again, I was in awe as they watched this little guy inch around the table.  They were amazed by his movements and his legs.  I love watching them discover the world.  I love being a part of their discovery. 

These are amazing days for all of us!  We are enjoying each and every single one!  I wake up in the morning--and I think how wonderful our lives are.  I think of how sweet, and fun our family is....and I am happy all over.  I might not catch up on laundry....ever.  I might not ever have clean floors.  I might not ever be fully rested.  But, who cares about that, when there is a world to discover with our babies.  :)

PS.  My husband is the one who gives me the strength to be the mom I want to be.  Not only does he work hard so I can be home, he buys me pink fishing poles so I feel special along with the kids, he puts the worm on the hook so my kids won't see that it disgusts me, he lets me sleep in on the weekends and always has a latte waiting for me, he comes downstairs to help with the dishes after he has gone to bed.  He shows me he loves me and that I am important and makes me feel like the love of his life--all while being a great dad.  I am a lucky, lucky girl.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


So, I turned the big 3-0, last week.  It's crazy to say it and even crazier to type it.  But, I feel good about it- about where we are in life.  We have had our babies, and we have "settled" so to speak.  We are content.  Sure, we still have goals we are aiming for, and things we want to do- but we are happy where we are, on the way to where we are going. 

I think that is a great thing to be able to say at 30.  

I look at it this way, we've had our babies--we got thru the crying and the sleepless nights.  We got thru the teething and the diapers.  We got thru the "tough" stuff.  We can now sit back and enjoy ourselves a little, before life goes crazy again.  Because, that is how it works.  Life is a series of ups and downs, and smooths and rough spots.  

Before long, Alexis will be starting school- and then Jaxen.  Our lives will suddenly be filled with extracurricular activities, pta meetings, and such.  We will be at sports games on the weekends-and trying to fit in family trips when there is time.  We are at the "FUN" part...and I am so excited to be here!

Sure, there will still be struggles and disappointments.  But, we handle them like everything else- we will pull together, lean on one another and hold on tight for the ride.   

I will get wrinkles, and Kyle will get a gray hair or two. ( I won't-because I will insist on getting my hair colored so often, that I won't notice ;))
We are starting to realize now, that we are full-blown parents.  We are at the stage, where we remember our parents being- when we were small, but old enough to remember some things.

So, this decade I look forward to the many memories we will create as a family.  I say, bring on the roller coaster ride--because I am ready!  We were made strong by the first years of struggling, and we can take anything! (almost anything--except for moving too far away from a Starbucks) 

I am looking forward to this decade most of all, because I know that in my next decade both of my kids will be teenagers--and that is just scary-- So, please let this decade last forever! :) 

By the way, I had a LOVELY and very Grown Up Dinner out with friends for my 30th.  My husband treated me to a fabulous truffle steak/lobster tail dinner with champagne, wine and sauternes.  I had 2 amazing cakes, and just got to bask in the moment of being right where I wanted to be at 30! (whew-I almost typed 40---NOT GOOD)
My husbands favorite photo from the night out! 

Thanks to everyone who made my day so extra-special! I love you all!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Advice from the Childless

It never seizes to amaze me when I hear a story about a Parent getting advice on "How to raise a child" from someone who has NO children. 

News Flash

If you have no children it's like being on the Bench at a Football you can yell and scream all you want to at the players but know this....YOUR NOT IN THE GAME. Sit down and SHUT UP!

Oh what's that? Your learning by what I'm doing wrong on how to raise your children when you have them.

STOP IT!! I'm busting a gut laughing over here. You are in for the ride of your life when you finally decide to bring your likeness into the world.


When you want that parenting advice from me or others who have been there and you make comments like "You don't know how to be a parent because you shouldn't let your child mix Playdoh, because it will turn grey and no one wants to play with Grey Playdoh."

Oh and "Because you let your child up early from "Time Out". When you say 5 minutes and let them out in 4 that's bad parenting." 

That for every Birthday and Christmas present I give your children they will receive 8 jars of Playdoh and I'm going to mix it before I wrap it! Because that's what bad Parents DO!!

Okay, I had to repost this, because I like so many other parents get so tired of people who think they know how to raise/discipline/rear/train/teach (whatever they are calling it) children--and have NONE.  I don't care if you've worked in a daycare for 20 years, I don't care if you've actually graduated from school and became a teacher--IT IS NOT THE SAME!!  
Don't get me wrong--I was one of those teachers--and I know lots of daycare/preschool workers-- I know those are tough jobs, and there is a lot of hands-on learning for the adult in those cases.  None of them make enough money, in my opinion.  BUT--I've done it all, and I am here to tell you, NOTHING you do or read--will stack up to becoming a PARENT yourself.  

So please, spare us your dirty looks, and snide remarks--because we WILL laugh at your struggles later on in life, when you do choose to have kids.  I'm just saying.

To be perfectly honest with you, I am lucky to not have too many of these "people" in my life.  For the most part, my family and friends accept and support my parenting--

A friend of mine, jokingly, has it all figured out--when she says "Why would we mess up our perfect parenting streak, by having our own children."  Or something like that...thanks Katie! 

Monday, April 26, 2010

You know what I love about doing these blogs?  I love that I can see where people are reading it from...I can see that people from the small town of Emporia all the way to Germany are reading it, how long they spend on one page, how often they visit and so on!! Isn't that amazing? 

So, yes--Amanda, when you read this--I know you are in Germany thinking of me :).  Now, you can see that I am thinking of you~ 

Isn't the internet a great way of keeping up-to-date!?! 

Thanks for reading, from wherever you are!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

We're back Home

I am back home, in Des Moines now...with one less car, but more clothes and shoes than we left with, thanks to Grandma  :).

Jaxen's bag did not make it out of the burning car--so, we had to do some shopping on Friday, and of course we can't just shop for Jaxen :).

Grandma played with the kids while I searched for cars online for parts of the day, and then we went to a tasty Fish fry on Friday night.  The kids LOVED the fish--and I have never seen them eat so much!  I think they both must be going thru a big growth spurt.

I just wanted to thank all of you who checked on us during this crazy little incident.  I am always amazed at the kindness and love from our family and friends.  Some neighbors came to check on us, after we got back today-- and Aunt Bekah stayed to hang out for a little while, which was nice for everyone.

Kyle and I will continue searching for a car--I don't want to rush into something, just for the sake of getting something.  But, hopefully we will find something that is "right" for us, sooner than later, since we had a trip to Minneapolis planned for this coming weekend.

I rest easy (okay, with hesitation because I like to be in control) in knowing that everything happens in God's perfect timing. Afterall, it was in his timing that the car started acting up enough for me to pull over- it was in his timing that I was able to get the kids out of the car, it was in his perfect timing that the stranger from Texas stopped to help me, it was in his perfect timing that my mom was available and ready to come to rescue us from the interstate--and it will be in his timing that we find a car.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

So, honey...the car caught on fire...

Driving to see my parents today- the car started to act really weird.  I surprisingly kept my cool--and turned on the hazards, while it slowed....I thought, maybe it was running out of gas, which seemed weird since it hadn't beeped at me, and it was at 1/4 of a tank last I looked.   And then , it revved and tried to speed itself up...I remember the gas pedal pushing itself all the way to the floor, on it's own...which made me think maybe the Cruise Control was going crazy.  I looked for the nearest exit- 1 mile.  There was no way I was going to make it so I pulled to the side of the highway.  We are talking BUSY, busy, BUSY highway. 

I saw smoke coming from the hood--and then waited for a quick break in 70mph traffic to sneak out of my car and lift the hood.  Not sure what I was going to do with it lifted--but I thought I'd better take a look.  So, after figuring out how to actually lift the hood--I looked and saw nothing, really -just some smoke.  So, I thought--overheated.

I went to the passengers side door, to lean in and check on the kids and have a seat--when I saw smoke rolling into the cabin from the low dash area.  This was not good.  I quickly, got out, and opened the kids door nearest the field -- and got them unbuckled and out of the car.  I stood them far away.  I walked towards the car- seeing a small flame underneath the car on the asphalt.  I grabbed what I saw in the passengers seat (my overnight bag, Alexis' overnight bag, my purse, pictures we brought for grandma and pretzels.)  I wasn't thinking about what I was grabbing--I was just grabbing what I saw-- and quickly.  If I had been thinking, I wouldve grabbed chargers, gps, tvs and Jaxen's bags.  But, instead the pretzels were there and I took them ? 

I don't remember shutting the doors to the car--but apparently I did.  At this point, I am not sure what would have been better , opened or shut.  I walked the kids as far away as we could in brush.  I thought, if the car went into flames, the hay wouldn't be far behind. 

I didn't hesitate even for a second as I called 911, to tell them that my car was about to go up in flames.  Instead my trusty mobile phone decided to ask me 3 times, if I was sure I wanted to enter into emergency mode...yes, yes, yes.  I talked to the dispatcher, and shockingly could tell her my exact location.  (I never pay attention to these things) - She already knew I had 2 kids w/ me, so another passeryby must have called it in. 

I hung up with them, in time to see a truck pull over with a man and a wife about my parents age.  They were the sweetest souls in the world, helping in any possible way.  They told us about their grandkids and he collected all the photos that were now flying around the field for grandma.  When the police officers got there, the man filled them in, and helped me to carry the kids thru the brush to get to the officer's vehicles.  The woman carried our bags- I cannot begin to tell you how grateful I am for those travellers to have stopped on their route from TX to Illinois.  I may have gotten a wild hair to open up the car, and get Jaxen's bag which he was asking about...the man had warned me that if I opened the doors w/ that much heat and smoke inside--it would blow up.   But, I wouldn't have known that--I may have thought the opposite.

The firefighters came w/ 3 trucks and took care of the car-investigating the cause.  Electric.  They called the towing company for me, and then the officers waited for my mom to come and pick us up.  While I took pictures of the car and thanked the men who helped me-- Alexis and Jaxen got a little hands-on lesson with the police officers and their paperwork. 

I look back and wonder how I worked so quickly, and w/o any hesitation to get us to safety-- and how I kept my cool thru all of the chaos- and I don't see the Sarah I expected to see.  You see, I am the girl who frantically freaks out at a car issue.  Stuck in the middle of an intersection--oh my gosh....I thought I would be that same girl, because:

No one told me what to look for in a car that is going to blow up.
No one told me how to handle two curious children on a busy highway, while trying to stay far away from the car.
No one told me their son might want his Buzz Lightyear bag, after I have forgotten it-and the fire has begun.
No one told me that it can get so hot in the car from just smoke that it can start to melt things.
No one told me not to fill up with gasoline that morning--but by not doing so--weakened the fire- because of lack of accelerant. ( Thank you gas station by my house, that was too busy for me to bother stopping in)

But, also:
No one told me I was going to be strong enough, when it mattered.
No one told me I was going to be calm and peaceful thru the storm.
No one told me I would have someone holding my hand thru  this obstacle, as I held on tightly to the 2 things that mattered the most to me in this world.  (Thank you sweet angels, from Texas for stopping on your trip cross country to stand with a scared girl and her 2 babies, because you saw your own daughter and grandkids standing there)
No one told me even Starbucks and new heels would take the trauma of the event away. 

I appreciate every single person who worked hard on keeping me and my children safe today- I cannot thank you enough!  For those of you who said a prayer of concern or gratitude--thank you.  For all of you-- may you never have to pull out your children from a car that is going up in flames--and if you do, may you be led by whatever led me today, making my actions possible in the midst of chaos.

Life goes down to many twists and turns-- just yesterday I was giggling under a pink umbrella, walking down the street- today, it could have been much worse-but, I got lucky and  I  was a hero to my children.  ( I use that word with great hesitation, because I don't like to call myself that...but I cannot think of another word) and whatever/whomever gave me that strength -- THANK YOU!

ps. if part of this doesn't make sense-- I apologize- I took ambien before writing the hopes for a peaceful night of sleep.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The Escape Artist

This past weekend, my father-in-law came to fence in our backyard.  Some neighbors pitched in, but it was still a very long weekend for all. 

There are 2 double gates, with one door locking in place at the bottom and a top latch on both pieces up top.  Today, as I let my kids play in the backyard--I realizd that Jaxen figured out how to get out of the gate-- It took him all of 3 minutes-- wow.  He never ceases to amaze me!
I called his dad, and told him we should re-work the gate mechanism, so that our little escape artist would stay in--as well as mentioning that we should sign him up for safe-cracking classes.  I am sure the FBI could use someone with his skills--even if he is only 3!

So, the adventure continues tomorrow, with the boy who keeps me on my toes every  minute of the day--yet, pulls on every single heartstring within me.  I love that boy.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Hey everyone!  Just wanted to let you know--that my crafting blog- has it's own domain name now...and I have started uploading how-to videos and such on there.  There are some exciting things in the future-with it...SO, I wanted to be sure you all went over there and followed, so you wouldn't miss anything!!

It is

Thanks for being so supportive!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Kindergarten Readiness

Wow- my baby girl is starting Kindergarten this year! It is hard to believe, that this time has already come. In the years of her life, I thought I had prepared it for this day. The next paragraph--may sound like bragging, so if you would like to skip it over it, you may.

Alexis has known how to spell and write her name since she was 2.
She has been able to count to 20 since she was 2.
She knows how to do simple addition and subtraction using more than one method. (counting fingers, counters, drawing dots, starting to count up).
She can identify every letter and tell you the sound they make with 90% accuracy (some letters make more than one sound, and some sounds are made by more than 1 letter).
She can sound out and spell most 3 and 4 letter words.
She uses imaginative spelling for longer words.
She has been exposed to many types of print--and several genres of literature.
She has been surrounded by books her whole life.
She has started to recognize fractions while we cook together.
She can explain in depth the life cycle of a butterfly.
She can recite the days of the week and the months of the year.
She knows her colors including the order of the rainbow.
She uses words like "blueprints" and "evidently," in her every day conversation.
She knows her address and her mother and father's names in case she is lost.
Plus, many other things she always seems to amaze us with---

Now,  of course, if you ask her--she learned all of these things from one person..."Dora." ;)

So, with a 4 year old, who knows ALL of this...why is it--that I can be made to feel so completely inadequate in teaching my daughter- when I go to Kindergarten Roundup, and I hear these words.

"In your packet, you will find a booklet of nursery rhymes--if your child does not know these, work on these this year. It has been shown that children who come to school with the knowledge of these nursery rhymes are better students."

WAIT?! WHAT?! Now, don't get me wrong--my daughter has heard the nursery rhymes at one point or another. Have we repeated them for memorization? Absolutely not. I thought--it would be better to stretch her imagination and literature experience by reading, "The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe," "Kit Kittredge" chapter books...and so on.

I sat there, not thinking of all that my daughter knows--but, that I had somehow failed her by not teaching her these nursery rhymes. Could school readiness be that simple? Did I miss the boat, somehow? My daughter, who has never entered a school building (aside from helping me with cheerleading practices in Elementary School, when she was 2) can read/write/compute/reason/communicate efficiently --and I feel like it's not enough.

I guess tomorrow, we will start on learning nursery rhymes ;). If she learns them- great. If not, that's okay too-- because I know she will succeed in school, not because she knew her nursery rhymes, but because she is successful in everything she does. :)


Lately, I have been dreaming...more like daydreaming.  It is constantly in my thoughts and never far from my mind.

This daydream is of a baby girl.  She has a name, and she is ours.  It is a sister for Alexis and Jaxen--and I can't get her out of my mind.  I reason her away most days-- but, she sneaks in there whenever she gets the chance. 

I convince myself, even if we tried to have her--she'd probably not be a she, but a he.  Or, there'd be two of her--then what?  So, I guess fear of the unknown keeps me from chasing this daydream. 

Am I crazy?  Will I daydream of a baby for the rest of my life--would I be satisfied if this baby were born to us? 

More kids equal needing more room, and the money split between one more child.  More kids means starting over, from the baby stage.

The hardest part for me, is that she has a name this time....I can't get that name out of my mind....

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Despite our colds and lack of energy-- the kids have had lunch--(grandma brought them McDonalds) and they are now in their room playing...together...quietly...and getting along.  So, I thought I would take this rare opportunity to write a little :).

I am not feeling myself today, I actually feel like I have a hangover of some sort--but, there was no drinking involved.  I feel broken, alone and confused.  However, as I look for the words to write--I notice that my toes are a very shiny, bright pink--and that makes me happy.

I feel sad.  My daughter told me yesterday that she thought I was grouchy sometimes.  Although, I understood her childlike opinion, it still hurt a little.  When asked to explain, she said it was because I didn't let her watch tv at nap time.  That is true, and I will hold my ground on that one--but, I am sure at times I am grouchy with them...and they don't see a mom full of love 100% of the time...and that makes me so incredibly sad.  How can I not be show them love all of the time--how can that small sounding task be so exhausting?  Am I alone in feeling this way?  Is it truly simple for those of you out there that feel like they can always answer their child with a smile, and calm reactions?

I am lost in trying to find my balance this week.  I don't know if it is because I am sick or because my body is playing tricks on me-- but, I am not feeling much like the super-mom I expect myself to be.  I could come up with a list of ways I am fall short- and as I browse that mental list, it is like a bullet to the chest. 

Sure, I can look at my kids--and by default, they must have a decent mother because they are good kids.  But, instead I try to think of ways I could do better, be a better example, show them how much I love them better-- I always think I can be better, there is no best for me. 

That to me is the hardest thing about becoming a mother-- I can't be the BEST.  I can't get that A+ on my paper-- I can't reach perfection.  I can only try-- and I am not handling that well.  I want that A+, I want a trophy.  Okay, maybe not a trophy, but I want to know I am doing the job perfectly.  Except in motherhood- there is no PERFECT. 

I do know this- I can't dwell on my imperfections-- because I am wasting precious time with my children.  So, I will end this for now- and go back to being mommy.  Afterall, how can I miss out on them-- I just heard my son say to my daughter, "you are the best sissy ever in the whole world."

I love them SO much!  <3

Friday, March 19, 2010

Another lesson in Mommyhood

As a mother, I have learned not to have the following lying around the house: Markers, Stickers, Liquid Soap.  Noone ever told me this rule, I have just learned by experience--horrible, messy experience ;).

At first, I wanted to be the "fun" mom--I wanted my kids to have all these creative utensils at their disposal.  But, now-- I stick to crayons, pencils and paper-- and even some of those are put out of reach.  Yes, I tried the magic markers that only color on special paper-- along w/ the same paintbrushes, crayons, and paints.  They are very gunky and dry out quickly...and we have gone thru many sets.   But, let's face it--they just aren't the same.

A few months ago, I gave in and purchased small whiteboards and dry erase markers for learning time with the kids.  As a "retired," teacher, I knew the convenience and learning benefits for reading and writing with whiteboard activities.  So, the teacher in me, overrode the mom in me--

This worked out okay for awile, and then I realized my son was trying to experiment with the markers.  So, up on the top of the refrigerator they went--far out of reach of any little hands.  Or, so I thought.  Our son got bigger and more daring.  And, one day as I was getting ready for the day, he made his way to the top of the refrigerator (who would have thought bar-height chairs was a bad idea?). 

I came down to a son covered in dry erase marker as well as a carpet full of red, green and black lines.  I guess he didn't bother to get the blue marker.  I freaked out a little-- okay, maybe a lot.  But, as a mother I have learned never to attempt to remove a stain without first doing a little research, because you could just make it worse.

So, I quickly googled dry-erase marker on carpet and what do you know?  Other mothers with the same kind of  "accident."  I learned that rubbing alcohol would take it out with lots and lots of blotting.  So, I grabbed my bottle of rubbing alcohol and away I went.  As I blotted for an eternity, I ran out of rubbing alchohol and frantically texted neighbors for their rubbing alcohol.  Thankfully, my good neighbor Wendy, had a bottle.

So, 2 bottles of rubbing alcohol and a house smelling like a hospital later- the stains were completely out of my light tan carpet.  I opened up the windows to air out the heavy alcohol smell, and thought better of starting up the fireplace to counteract all the cold air coming in.  That could have made the situation MUCH worse!  Now onto the boy--

I asked him why he drew all over himself, and he explained to me matter-of-factly, that he was a "transformer."   Of course, how could I have not known?  Actually as I looked at him-- he did look a little like Optimus Prime.  Thankfully, it just took a little soap and water to get most of the marker off of him!
See, with a girl-- I didn't have this problem.  She didn't like to climb on things, especially not on the refrigerator.  She didn't try to look like a transformer-- Boys can be challenging in their own little ornery but cute way!

Don't get me wrong, I know girls are challenging in their own way--with a fashion diva as a daughter (not to mention her mouthy mother...wait, did I say that?)... I am very aware of their challenging behaviors.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

May the Force be with You

I am not a fan of Star Wars, by any means--or was that Star Trek ;).  Anyway, this quote came to mind, as I was thinking today that mothers must have some sort of magnetic force within us.  Which sounds amazing, right?

I realized that I had this magnetic power ther other day as I slid my hand ever so slightly, towards my daughter's hand -- and, her hand automatically, without thinking about it,  slid towards mine. 

This happens with both of my children... no matter what we are doing or where we are.  We can be walking, snuggling, sitting at a table or playing.  All I have to do, is simply and slightly move my hand in their direction--and it's like a force within me, that is so strong, sucks their hands to mine--and doesn't let go. 

This also can happen in a full-body kind of way when we see each other after a "pause," from one another.  This pause could be a mommy-only shopping trip, a mommy and daddy date night, a night of sleep, a nap, or a trip to the bathroom.  When their little bodies see me--my magnetic force, pulls them to me and into a hug.  This is usually accompanied by a sqeal of, "Mommeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!"

You would think, by reading this that this is the most wonderful gift a mother could ask for-- but, it has it's faults.  For instance, my magnetic force somehow loses its strength when we are outdoors at a fun place (park, pool, etc).  It also seems to lose its strength when their are friends around, or when it it time to clean up. 

The strength is also hightened at other times...For instance, the magnetic force is at an all-time high, when Mommy is on the phone, with company, in the shower, or going potty herself.  At these times, it does not matter where, when or how fast I go, or where I try to hide--the magnetic force will pull the kids to me-- IT NEVER FAILS.  Actually, this anomaly is what inspired the name for my blog.  Finding Myself Before the Kids Find Me....I just didn't mention that the kids would find me by magnetic force.

So, yes, I am thankful for my Mommy Magnetism, because there is nothing sweeter than holding your child's tiny little hand in yours. I am also thankful for my brief just mommy-moments (because let's be honest,  showering becomes a little more difficult, with a kid hanging onto your leg) 

Although, It would be nice to figure out how to reverse my polarity--so I could have the best of both worlds--anyone figure that out?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Monster Spray

Our 4 year old daughter, has been struggling with sleeping at night.  She seems to think there are monsters in her room--although, she can't describe what these monsters are--she just knows she does not like to be in the dark with them.
(note: this guy kinda creeps me out--I think I know where she gets her fear of monsters from ;)

After many sleepless nights as the mom, I thought we could solve the problem, with some "Monster Spray."  You can buy at Bath and Body Works, it smells like fruit or flowers and when sprayed it wards of Monsters.  ;) ;)

I explained the Monster Spray to my daughter--rather vaguely- because I didn't want us to be stuck with this spray for years.  She thought the idea of it was amazing-- I sprayed the normal monster hiding spots-- under the bed, behind the door, in the closet, etc.  Then I handed her the spray.  I told her that if she saw or heard something, that all she had to do was spray the Monster Spray in the general direction.  And, because my kids were never satisfied with simply asking why--but only satisfied after they dug much, much deeper--The rest of the conversation went like this:

"So, what happens to the monster then...?"
"It disappers?"
"So, where does its wax go?" (I am thoroughly puzzled by this)
"What wax?"
"The pile of wax he turns into." (Oh, of course--why didn't I think of this)
"Oh, no honey--there won't be wax, he will evaporate into the air."
"Oh, he'll disolve?"

Okay, problem solved- kisses given, blankets tucked--and I am walk out the door, only making it down 3 steps when I hear a frantic cry from our daughter.

"MOOOOMMM" (grrr...I thought we solved this with a miracle, magical monster solution)
"yes, honey..."
"I acidentally sprayed myself w/ the Monster Spray!!! Am I going to EVAPORATE??!?!"

I sigh, because with Alexis, nothing is ever plain and easy-- she overthinks EVERYTHING-- so, most of the time I am left wondering if I am doing more harm than good.

"No, honey-- you will not evaporate- it ONLY works on monsters." (a conclusion, not as obvious as one might think--although, there have been times both of my children have acted like monsters--hmmm...maybe it will work on them....)

Crisis averted, and everyone in the house got a good night's sleep.
Unfortunately, this magical solution did not last very long--before she realized the silliness of it :/.  Oh well, I guess I should feel blessed she is so smart--but it sure makes things challenging!

So, if any of you have any ideas on how to rid a 4 year olds bedroom of monsters-- let me know, because our sleep is depending on it! 

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Today, I woke up with the crazy idea--to take the kids and ourselves on our very first geocaching trip.  If you are unfamiliar with geocaching,  geocaching is described as:

"...a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment."

I downloaded a geocaching app on my phone last night, and after our time change this morning, we were ready to go!  There were several within a mile of our home- but, since we can't cut straight thru--they were within 2 miles.  Anyway, the whole way I was hoping that we would be able to find the cache and that it had not been compromised....and also, that there would be something that would excited our 2 children, who had brought their own things to leave behind. 

After a long walk, on one of our first beautiful days-- we arrived at the coordinates.  We looked and looked around--not knowing exactly what we were looking for.  Then, "daddy," spotted the cache-- and we looked inside.  Jaxen found a very cool Sheriff's badge and a pencil sharpener.  Alexis found a fairy and a pencil sharpener.  To a 3 year old and a 4 year old, these were treasures beyond measure.  They left the treasures that they brought--and we headed back home. 

The kids loved the treasure hunt, and are looking forward to our next one.  I think Daddy had a good time too-- what guy doesn't like to go on a treasure hunt?  Of course, after the long walk and all of the adventure--the kids and daddy were wiped out!  They fell asleep together, on the chair in the living room.  :)

If you are interested in trying geocaching on your own, go to for more information and to find caches in your area.  And, if you have a smartphone, no need for a gps, just use your phone!
Did you ever know that mothers have superpowers?  I know I have convinced my kids of this, but I didn't fully believe it myself until I thought about it today...

As a mother, you immediately know your child's cry- you can pick your child's cry out of 100 babies cries, I suppose.  I know this is immediate, because when we had Alexis, the nurses took her to the nursery under the strict orders not to give her any formula or pacifiers.  So, she came back from the nursery often-- as did other babies.

But, as we sat in our room, and Alexis was being wheeled down the long corridor, I knew EVERY single time when it was her--because I could hear her identifiable cry.  Kyle and I would look at each other and just know-- that our Alexis Faith would be there within a minute or so. 

This ability continues as the child grows--and I can still pick out my kids' cries over other kids--but with that I am also able to note the kind of cry it is...a pretend-we're-playing-house-cry, an I-stubbed-by-toe-or-other-insignificant-incident-cry, a my-sibling-is-being-mean-to-me-cry, the I-am-scared-cry, the I-am-tired-cry and the I-am-REALLY-hurt-cry. 

I am not tooting my own horn, because I am pretty sure every mother has this superpower, if you will. 
I am gratefull that most of my children's cries fall in the first 5 kinds of cries.  But, there are those moments-like today that you hear that I-am-REALLY-hurt-cry, and no matter where you are, how far away you are, what you are wearing or doing, you stop instantly and go to the side of your child.  See, it is much like a superpower. 

Today, I was getting out of the shower, just wrapped the towel around myself-when I heard our daughter yell in pain.  I think I leapt to her side at the bottom of the stairs, as her dad did from a different direction.  She had fallen from the middle of the stairs, and landed straight on her back, knocking the wind out of her.  Was she okay, for the most part- yes, thankfully.  But, it was a nice reminder to the superpowers God has given us as parents, to take care of our children to the best of our ability.  

I will hear her when she cries, I will be able to kiss away her tears, I will be able to make everything better- Not because I googled it, or because I researched it in a book (this is what I do for everything else in life, however)...but because I am a mother. 

Mothers are modern-day Superheroes.  I dare anyone to prove me wrong ;)

The mother of a B-O-Y

Being a mother of a first-born daughter, I didn't realize how very different it would be to raise a boy.  I never thought I would have to say for the 50th time that day, "please, put your clothes back on!" 
Other things, I thought I would never be saying are:
"hands don't go in your underpants."
"you cannot bake with mommy, while you are naked." 
"Where are your underwear?"
"Please put that away."
"You can't answer the door without clothes on."
"Where have these salad tongs been...?"

Okay, I will let you figure out what our son has discovered in the last few weeks......waiting....(light bulb comes on), I will continue.

I never, in my wildest dreams, could have even scratched the surface of what to expect with raising a boy.  I tell my stories to those around me, with sons--and they just shake their heads...uh, huh....they've been there, done that.

So, if they have all been there and done that--where was my warning?  Where was my copy of  "What to expect, when Raising Boys" ?? 

I am so glad, I am for the most part a calm mother- because I barely flinched when our darling son figured out his "peanuts" can be different sizes-- Sure, I asked myself how this could possibly happen to a newly 3 year old...and I giggled under my breath as he breathed a sigh of relief when it was back to its "widdle" size.

Nor, do I flinch as he often peeks inside to gauge its status.  I do feel bad that he is stuck home with a sister and a mother--during this time of self-discovery.  And, I am seeing a pattern of him, finding humor in his anatomy and the reactions he gets --ahh....boys!

How can this girly, mother raise a boy in this tender time of boyhood?  I have no idea, but I will stumble through-- and I will do my best- and pray that by school-time he is more interested in a pencil and paper than his, "peanuts."

(Jaxen, my dear son...when you read this one day- whether I am here or not-- please know that I love you more than you will ever know.  You are my sunshine, and I cannot imagine life without you.  You have challenged me in the best of ways, and I look forward to every single day with you, as you teach me about motherhood and life.  I love you, Jaxen)

I'm still here

Wow- it's been awhile since I have written. 
I have thought about writing often, but I never seem to have the thoughts flowing when I sit down at the computer.  (Okay, I don't really sit down at a computer--I lounge on the couch with the laptop balanced between my legs and tummy). 

Whichever way the computer is connected to me, my fingers always levitate above the keys--without the slightest movement...until, I mouse over to my favorite time-waster, Facebook or Online Shopping :).

So, to prevent my kids from thinking that there was a void in our existance from feb-march 2010- I will attempt a quick recap of our lives. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Oh Hap-PEE Day

Our son, did not have any desire to use the potty.  He did not care if he was wet, or dirty.  He didn't want to take the time to stop what he was doing, to go to the bathroom.  The whole year he was 2, I tried on different ocassions to start potty training, without ever having much success.

I would stop, and wait a few weeks--and start again, thinking he might be ready this time.  I would get suggestions from friends and family-- and sometimes, even a gasp.  "He's almost 3, and still not potty trained!"  I did NOT let others bring me down, or feel bad about my pullup wearing child.  It wasn't their business, and it wasn't their problem.  Afterall, I was the one buying and changing the pullups.  I will, however, smile knowingly one day, when they look at me after having children, and their potty training attempts fail. 

I would always reiterate, that he just wasn't ready yet.  Some kids, (ofen boys), just aren't ready as soon as girls.  I didn't push him so hard, that I was actually potty training myself- by timing his pottying so that I didn't miss any movements, so to speak.  It just didn't make sense to put us both thru that. 

Then Jaxen turned 3, and we started another potty training attempt.  To our utter amazement, this attempt worked almost immediately.  We didn't do much, just offered an incentive.  We started off by allowing him to earn stars for going potty on his own.  If he earned 10 stars, the first week--he got a toy at the end of the week. He hit his goal.  The second week, if he earned 20 stars, he got a toy.  This week, he has to have 5 completely dry days- to get his toy. 

But, here is the thing--it isn't about the stars or the toys to him.  Sure he likes the toys, but when he has to go potty he goes-- w/o ever asking for a star.  I stand by my original statement, that he just wasn't ready before.  Now, he is.  It is clear, that with all the other useless attempts- this one has been quick and simple. 

Do I dare say, he is POTTY TRAINED, officially, yet?  Nope-- not gonna jinx myself after a year of parental failures in that arena.  He knows we are beyond proud of him, and we will keep the toy thing up until we are positive we are potty trained. 

With this experience, we have chuckled often.  I chuckle when I see him stumble to the potty in the morning, and stand to pee.  Normally, he sits, but in the mornings he likes to stand..  I chuckle when he comes to me and says, he "played with his squirt gun."  I chuckle when he thinks he needs to change his underwear after every time that he sits on the potty, even if they are clean and dry. 

But, I smile proudly when I realize I haven't changed an oopsy pullup in weeks.  And, I smile proudly when I see that toilet seat up in the morning.  I smile proudly, when I hear his footsteps running down the hall, and him calling, "I have to go potty!" 

I can't believe both of our children are thru this important stage-- and becoming such big kids!  It is a very bittersweet moment for me.  However, I will take the memories of their baby years over more diapers any day!

On another note, which I just can't bare to leave out.  My son, saw Transformers 1 with his dad, and loves the parts with Bumblebee.  He vividly remember the part of the movie where Bumblebee unscrews his "oil cap," and is told to quit lubricating the man. 

Bumblee in Tranformers Click to watch

During our 2nd week of successful potty training, Jaxen stood above his dad, who was laying down, unscrewed his oil cap, (located on his bellybutton), made the psssssssssss sound, and said, "I lubricate you."

His dad and I both laughed....a lot!  We couldn't help it!  Then I realized that in this important time of potty training, that I was so glad that he didn't realize what the movie was implying- or we could have had a whole other mess on our hands!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

23 more days!

23 more days, marks the end of my time with someone else's baby.  I will be so happy to spend my days with Alexis and Jaxen- without the distraction or responsibility of another mother's bundle of joy.  Although, babies can be fun--it is time for me to concentrate on just my babies-before, they are no longer babies.

Alexis starts Kindergarten in the fall, and Jaxen is not far behind her.  I feel them slipping into busy school kids, who don't snuggle with their mom in the morning or don't need to be tucked in-- and I am clinging onto the last days with desperation.  But, I refuse to let my desperation, stand in the way of allowing myself to enjoy these days with them...

We will skip, jump in puddles, eat ice cream before lunch, build castles in the sand....and most importantly I will never once, not even for a moment--regret, my decision to spend this precious time with my babies.  I will look back and cherish every, "small,"  moment-- It is like the quote by Robert Brault, "“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.”

It is the little moments spent with your babies, that teach them how to love, and how to be loved.  The little moments show them they are important and worthy of your undivided attention.  These moments shape them into the adults they will one day become- and they will forever become a part of me, that I will cling to, with the same desperation in my last days on this earth.

So, I will be selfish for me, and I will be selfish for my kids--because I don't want anything to stand in the way of these moments-- I also know that our kids need more than me, they need their dad too.  So, I am grateful that Kyle has a job that allows him to be home with them more than he ever has been able to in the past.  The kids have loved having him around, and spending time with their daddy.  He has worked hard to get where he is at, and we have been blessed to be put in a position, where we are able to make this decision, without worry. 

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Dream with me

My sweet daughter, loves to dream with me.  Sometiems she asks me what I want to dream about, and I make up some elaborate setting for our dreams to take place.  Other times, she knows exactly what she wants to dream about, and she tells me about the setting, or character I will play in these dreams.  Then she says, "See you in my dreams..." and we go to our beds. 

Now, of course I don't really get to choose my dreams-- and most often I don't even remember my dreams.  I wonder if she really dreams, what we've talked about, or if they are just settings and events she thinks about before drifting off to sleep.  Either way, it is a sweet way to part from one another.

Every once in awhile, we get caught up in our daily events, and we forget to talk about the dreams we will meet each other in.  It was after one of those evenings, that Alexis sat at the breakfast table, eager to tell me about her dream.

"Mom, do you want to hear about my dream?"
Without blinking, I sleepily answer, "sure."  I thought I would hear an elaborate story of princesses and castles, or of riding an elephant in a circus, or of being a Musketeer.  Instead, I heard something that shook me out of my sleepiness, faster than any cup of coffee.
"I found this wishing well, and I made a wish."
"Do you know what I wished for?"
Here it comes....With more excitement than any mother is ready for at 7:30am..."I wished for my boyfriend, and he appeared...and he had blonde hair and green eyes, and he was so handsome, that I almost kissed him before we got married...."

My eyes were wide open, questions and concerns replaced the fuzzy nothingness in my head, and my heart beat just a bit faster. I tried to stay calm, and not act like this dream came as a shock, as I looked at my 4 year old daughter.

"Wait, you wished for your boyfriend?"
"yeah, and he was so handsome, that I almost kissed him before we got married.?"
"So, did you kiss him before you got married...?"
"No, mom- I can't kiss him til I get married...."

I am sure I couldn't hide my sigh of relief.  Not, that we are a family that believes there should be no kissing before marriage, but we are a family that is postponing any dating for our children til they are at least over 4 :).  In all seriousness, Alexis will probably not be able to date until she is 16. 
We want our children to become who God intends them to become, before stifling their unique personalities or losing their deserved innocence,  by dating too soon.  I wouldn't say we are over-protective, but we also come from homes that encouraged allowing children to be just that....children.  There is no good reason, to rush them through this special and important time in their lives. 

I also understand, as I write these words that things may happen differently, that what I expect--and that life will do it's best at surprising me.  Parenting in general, has surprised me.  I had an ideal of what parenting was, and how I would parent--and the steps I would take in rearing and raising my children.  And, I am sure I am not the first to say, that after you actually become a parent-- any ideals you might have had, are completely BLOWN out of the water, leaving you with only a trace of what you expected. 

Then of course, when you think you have found your footing in parenting, then you have another child-- OR, your child gets older.  Parenting is an unending obstacle course, with new challenges at every age.  But, I honestly Thank God for these challenges, because it means I AM a parent, and love my kids enough to care about the challenges of parenting them.

Am I confident that I am making all the right decisions in parenting--nope, are any of us?
But, I am confident that no matter what they do, I will love my kids--and we will get through it. 

In the meantime, I will be proud that my daughter is saving her first kiss for her handsome, blonde hair, green eyed boyfriend for marriage.  And, without a doubt, I will keep any blonde hair, green-eyed boys far, far, far away from my daughter.  Just in case. ;)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Proud Momma

As a mother, there are those times that make you as proud as a peacock.  Some of those moments, are expected--and then there are those times that come out of the blue, and leave you speechless. Although, I
am proud of my kids when they show excellence in things--

I was proud of Jaxen when he learned how to get dressed himself, or Alexis when she learned how to read and write--but those, are all things that I expect to happen. However, it is not the same kind of pride I feel when I realize they are becoming the kind of person I want them and God wants them to become. These are the moments, that let you realize in a flash, that you are doing a great job raising a well-balanced, loving, smart, caring child.

Like today, as I sat next to my 2 yr. old son on the couch.  He had 2 little blankets, one on him and one next to him.  I left the one on him, and pulled the other one on top of me.  He looked at me, with love in his eyes, because he was happy I was sitting next to him.  And, then this conversation took place.

"That's for my sissy." (the blanket)
"oh. I'll give it back to her."
"No, I'll give her mine." -- what???!  I'll give her mine, a 2 year old giving up his blanket for his sister, so mommy can have one and sister can have one--and him left without.  I was shocked and so very proud.  To be fair, he is almost 3-- but, all the same, it was a genuine gesture that some adults would not make. 

Jaxen is becoming such a sweet, loving boy.  Sure, he still likes to play hard and get into everything-- but, at the end of the day what is important to me, is that he is growing into a man I can be proud of raising.  I am thankful for those moments, that take me by surprise and remind me that we, as parents are on the right track.  Because, I need encouragement, like every other parent out there.  I need to know I am doing a good job raising a son and a daughter.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Bye-bye Baby

 I know my 2 children will always be my babies, but when is someone's baby, no longer a baby?

My youngest, is just about to turn 3- and I have been thinking about this a lot lately.  I love so many things about his baby-self,  including his round little face, his hand dimples, and the sweet way he talks.  So, as these things start to disappear, I wonder if my baby is disappearing also. 

Sure I will be proud when he can say "yogurt," instead of "ogurt" but-- a part of my heart will also break.  His accomplishments, are steps to him becoming a, "big boy," and that is the scariest part for me.

When I look down at his hands, and there are knuckles where his hand dimples used to be, I think I might actually cry.  These are all small changes, that happen overtime-- but the end result is the bittersweet reality I am not ready to face.   Because, I can't bare the thought of him not wanting to "nuggle" me in the mornings or bare the thought of him not wanting my hugs and kisses. 

Don't get me wrong- I do not miss the sleepless nights, the teething, the baby food, the diapers, the spitup and so on, and so on....

I just wish I could freeze time- my daughter could stay 4 and my son could stay 2 til the end of time...okay, maybe that's not such a good idea.  But, I just want to reiterate how fast time truly does go when raising children.  Which is my favorite quote remains to be, " The days are long, but the years are short." 

It could only have been a parent that wrote that-- and probably a mother.  Any mother knows how very long days can be with a cranky toddler or a colicky baby.  The patience it takes to get through one single day, as the laundry and dishes pile up, and you can't even fit in a 5 minute shower.  A day can seem to last forever-- but, even so- at the end of that day, while you lay in bed in the silence you have been praying for all realize how quickly the years are going by with your baby.  You see the time in fast forward- and all you can do is long to hold and be with that child that drove you crazy all day long.

So, I do what any mother would do-- I deprive myself of a little more sleep- so I can go stare at my sleeping baby, while they are still a baby. 

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

WE will not be a Statistic

If 50% of marriages end in divorce-- it begs the question....why? Do they get married too young? Do people change? Do they make an unforgivable mistake?

The percentage is higher, the younger you get married-- I am in the 2nd tier of risk, since I was 24, had I waited one more year, our statistics would have been better.  What were we thinking?!

Here is another statistic:

50% of women cheat on their husbands at some point in their marriage and 60% of men cheat on their wives.   Which means....that someone is having an affair in 80% of all marriages!!! OMG- isn't that positively ridiculous to think about?!  Forgive the overuse of exclamation and question marks, but I am honestly shocked!

I knew the number had to be high, since it seems like every time you turn around you hear about the unthinkable.  But, 80% and yet, the divorce rate is only 50%.  (I am sure there is some crossover like both husband and wife cheating in one marriage) I don't know if we should be proud or ashamed that are divorce rate is less than our cheating rate?

All I do know, is that it makes me incredibly sad.  Sad, that we cannot be faithful to our spouses, sad that we have let our society become so full of adultery.  I am not lecturing, I am not preaching, I am just having trouble finding faith in marriage, in the vows all married people spoke before God, in people.   I have lost faith, I have lost trust in those around me.

I struggle with naivety.  I think the best of people, until I am proven wrong.  (When 2 people wander off together, I am not thinking about them doing anything wrong-- I am the one shocked when I find out that they did do something wrong. )  I am trying to be less naive, and trying to see the world for what it really is.  But, with this comes a loss of innocence, that I am not sure I am ready to give up at even (almost) 30 years old.  I want to see the good in people, I want to hope for the good in people, I want to trust, I want to have faith in promises made.  I want to believe in love, I want to believe in marriage.

As a couple, Kyle and I know more married people that have been divorced than not-- and we are not that old yet.  We are not even in our 30's yet.  Those of you are in your 30's or almost-- and not married yet, consider yourselves lucky-- your chances of getting divorced are much lower than mine.

So, as I sit here and think about the looming doom of divorce rates-- I glance toward my husband, and I know- that I trust him, I love him, I have faith in us.  We are not a number on a page, we are not a percentage point.  We are Sarah and Kyle, husband and wife, mother and father of 2 beautiful children-- that's it.   If the whole world crumbles around us, (which apparently 50-60% of the world is)  our family will keep our eyes up, our hope alive with our hands held.  It's him and I, against the world of statistics.  With God, we will prevail.

For those of you who have been divorced, or are going through a divorce- my heart goes out to you.  I know there is pain and hurt that I could not even fathom.  I am sure it is one of the hardest things you have done.  I pray for you, and your ex-spouse and any children that may be involved.  I pray that you find peace and joy in 2010 and that love surrounds you and your family.