Saturday, May 30, 2009

Snapshots

There are those moments when I am watching my children and I wish I had a camera or the ability to always remember that exact moment. I want to remember everything...the look, the sounds, the feel. Those are the snapshot moments that I keep with me. Here are a few from recent memory.

Odessa:

We are trying to get everyone out of the car and into the church on a rainy Sunday morning. Odessa takes off after the older kids, running as fast as her chubby little legs will take her, but loses a shoe in the process. Instead of picking up the shoe and continuing into the building, she picks it up and plops herself down in the middle of the rain soaked parking lot. I didn't know if I should laugh or cry as I watched her try to get her shoe on. I ran to her, hauling her into the building and laughing as I went. She was completely unaffected by how wet she was and just wanted her shoe on. Oh, how I love that little girl.

Katherine:

Katherine had to have a bunch of dental work done this week, and since she is only four, and not my bravest four-year old, I opted to have her sedated and get the work all done at once. She did wonderfully, but had a difficult time waking up from the anaesthesia. As she began to come-to, I leaned over and kissed her forehead. When I looked down into her face, she had puckered up her little lips and remained that way until I placed my cheek by them so she could kiss me back. She was so groggy, but so insistent on kissing me. She is such a beauty and so sweet!

Lillie:

Lillie brought home a bunch of work from school on Friday. I usually glance through it to see if there's anything the kids either need help with or a little extra work at home. They recently started multiplication and as I went through her work, I could see that she is struggling with it a little bit. She was standing by me, so I picked out a couple of problems to go over with her to see if she knew why they were wrong. One problem had a picture of two firefighters and asked how many fingers they had. Lillie told me they had eight fingers. I looked up at her, questioningly, and held out my own hands and asked again. She then informed me that they had eight fingers and two thumbs. I looked into her freckled face and I could see tears in her eyes. She thinks so much like her father. I explained that for the purpose of this question, the thumbs counted as fingers. She nearly cried, but I loved her so much at that moment. With her piggy tails flying out of control, her beat-up legs, and her wild personality, she was so sad that she misunderstood what was being asked of her. As difficult as she can be, she loves to please people.

Emily:

Can I just keep her little like this for a while? Why do they have to grow so fast?

Andrew:

Last week we went to the park as a family for a picnic. It was wonderful. Andrew and his father threw the football back and forth for a bit and I just wanted to freeze that moment. He's so tall and strong. I love to watch him and his father do things together.

Michael:

As I was hugging Michael goodnight last night, he squeezed me and said, "Mom, thanks for letting me have my own turtle. I'm very fortunate that you let me have a pet turtle." It never ceases to amaze me when he uses big words. He's done it since he was really little and I love how he's able to express himself. Michael is one cool kid!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Singing Hallelujah!!!

The clouds have parted. The sun is shining. And my oldest three children are back in school. Sing Hallelujah!! I probably sound horribly callous and uncaring, but after three weeks of off-track children, I am grateful for school. I make it no secret that I hate year-round school. (Yes, hate is a strong word.) I want them either in school or out of school. None of this back and forth business. But I am stuck in year-round school land, and so I must suffer.

The biggest problem this last time was that after having a baby, I didn't have the stamina or energy to go do fun things with them, which is how I usually survive. So they were at home. Thank heavens for warm weather. I think that saved all of us!

I didn't cry when Andrew went to Kindergarten. Some parents thought that I was just downright cruel because I was counting down the days. It didn't make me sad. I was thrilled that he could go learn something and someone besides me would be in charge of entertaining him for a couple of hours a day.

I still feel that way. I would have sent Michael to first grade this year if they'd let me! He and Katherine don't play well and he is often bored. I think he's counting down till first grade too.

But all that being said, I love summer break. Summer is for children. It's all about wearing swimsuits for days on end, playing in the water, going to the park, picnics, camping etc. I love summer. And I find value in allowing my children to be bored and 'making' them go play. Children are so creative when allowed to just be free. We haven't even had summer yet, and already we've had Lillie step on a nail, Michael jumping off walls, and the children look as though I beat their legs regularly!

So while I am thankful for a few more weeks of school, I am really excited for summer! (Hopefully I'll be fully recovered by the time they are out of school in July.) Yet another reason to Sing Hallelujah!!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Recovery

Recovery is a tricky thing and there's so many things nobody tells you and then there are things you won't know until you are the one recovering. And just because you've done it before, say five other times, doesn't mean this time will be the same.

Right now, I am in the fourth trimester of pregnancy. Baby is no longer causing discomfort from the inside, but rather from the outside. Emily is a little colicky and I am sleep deprived. Which, sadly, makes for a mom that is as cranky as in the third trimester of pregnancy. We love her, don't get me wrong, but after a few hours of fussing and walking holes in the carpet, she may join the other children on the sidewalk with a for sale sign on her forehead. It's a good thing she's so yummy!

(They weren't for sale here, but they were attempting to sell their wares at our annual neighborhood yard sale.)


One of the more difficult things about recovering when you have other children, is the fact that they insist on eating and having clean clothes. And since I'm such a big fan of laundry, having a newborn doesn't help the situation at all.



Life doesn't stop just because you have a baby and unfortunately Dad can't take six months off to do all those things so I can lay around the house.

The other difficulty in recovery is this:



She doesn't look at ALL mischievous to you, does she? She likes to do such things as dumping the rest of my Pepsi in the front seat of the van, drawing on herself with marker, eating dirt and/or rocks, joyously dumping toys etc. It makes it hard to sit and rest whilst chasing a VERY busy toddler. I'm starting to think recovery is the wrong word for the stage I'm currently in.

Then there's the fact that I hate laying around the house. I love my house, but I don't want to look at it all the time and I get antsy. People like to make comments on how amazing it is that I'm out and about, but what they don't realize is that it's a matter of sanity. If I don't get out...well, let's just say everyone is happier when mom can get out of the house a little. Even with a newborn. (Heck we went to Fiji when Andrew was three weeks old. I think a trip to the park is not a big deal!)

Of course, there's always moments that make it all worth it. (Even though I offered to sell my sister my children last night. Funny thing, she didn't take me up on it!!) I love my children so much it hurts. And sometimes it does hurt.



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Valuable Lesson

"Dad, I've learned a valuable lesson tonight" said Michael as he got out of the car at the instacare last night. He then stated that he learned that it's important to tell the truth.

Last week, Michael came in after a day of playing and was hobbling around. We asked him what happened and he informed us that he got mad and kicked the wall. (We have an 8 foot brick wall that is a fence on the back of our property.) We informed him that that wasn't very smart and perhaps he should learn a better way to express his frustration. I dismissed the incident, but over the past couple of days noticed that he was still hobbling around a bit. Every time I asked him about it, he would claim that his foot didn't hurt and he didn't know why he was walking funny.

Now, this is when having two parents comes in handy. Yesterday, he was hobbling worse than he had been, but when I asked, he gave the same answer he'd been giving me. I was concerned, but having a newborn takes a considerable amount of time, energy and aparently brain power, so I once again dismissed it. Luckily, Dave also noticed, and upon a more insistent inspection, became concerned that Michael had broken something. We were debating about when to take him in, so I went ahead and tucked him into bed. As I was tucking him in, he fessed up.

I was informed by my son that before I had told the kids that they couldn't go past a certain point in the yard out to the busy street/sidewalk on the other side of the wall, he had jumped off that wall, barefoot. When he told me the truth, it made so much more sense as to why his heel hurt and not his toes. I'd been scratching my head trying to figure out how he had kicked the wall with the heel of his foot.

After "the coolest doctor's appointment ever" (Michael's words, not mine, apparently X-rays are the coolest), we learned he may have a fracture in his heel, though because of where his growth plates are, they can't completely tell. So he gets to wear a boot around for a week, as though he had a fracture, and we'll see how he's doing. If he's walking normal, we are good to go, if not, we may have to get more extensive tests etc. to see if there's a bigger problem.

After they returned last night, and Michael, grinning ear to ear told me about his experience, my husband told me about Michael's announcement that he'd learned a valuable lesson. We had a giggle at the way Michael expresses himself and are grateful it's not more serious! I'm also grateful to have a husband that pays more attention than me!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Monday, May 4, 2009

Emily Claire

Just a quick announcement, though most of you that read my blog already know! Miss Emily Claire made her debut on May 2nd at 2:15 a.m. after a short labor and arriving at the hospital a mere hour earlier! She weighed 9lbs 4oz. and was 20 inches long. She is a healthy, happy newborn and we are excited to have her in our family! Needless to say, this blogger is going to take a little hiatus, but will return with many stories and pictures of our newest addition!