Archive for March, 2010

The Facts — Good Ones, Bad Ones, and Pretty-Close-to-Terrible Ones

  • Getting hit full-force by his big brother a few times really helps an impulsive child control his own hitting a little better.
  • An impulsive child sometimes completely lacks judgement.  An impulsive child sometimes disobeys even the cardinal, hardest-driven, most-recited rules.  An impulsive child will sometimes totally disregard his boundaries while he is riding his bike with friends.  An impulsive child will even sometimes go down to the FORBIDDEN lake all alone and fall into the water.  Sometimes an impulsive child will ignore his bike boundaries and run off to the lake all in the same afternoon.
  • A mom oftentimes praises and thanks God for protecting her children who completely lack judgement.
  • A mom sometimes falls completely apart at the frightening revelation that her child just put himself in terrible danger.  She sometimes even falls to the floor and bawls her eyes out in front of all of her children while her mind is filled with yucky, tragic headlines and possibilities.
  • An impulsive child sometimes gets grounded for YEARS at a time.
  • March Madness can be all-entrancing to a 10-year-old boy.
  • Young boys have lots of room in their brains for memorizing basketball facts and statistics, and those facts sometimes come streaming out of their young mouths at rapid speeds and high volumes.
  • Desitin contains a fair amount of cod liver oil.  It delivers a slightly rank odor when applied to carpet, skin, hair, and walls.
  • When water and various cleaning chemicals are mixed with cod liver oil, it magnifies the fishy smell exponentially.
  • Cod liver oil remains the pervading aroma in Chloe’s bedroom.
  • Thankfully Chloe was easier to clean than the carpet so her cod liver oil scent is not so prevalent.
  • An impulsive child left alone with his morning medicine will sometimes open the capsules and dump the tiny little balls in the floor of the pantry instead of swallowing them as he was instructed.
  • An impulsive child who has made a bad choice with his morning medicine will sometimes lie to cover up the dirty truth.  But when asked for more details will finally act disgusted with his mother and say, “Fine!”  and then spill the dirty truth.
  • Moms sometimes get very angry with their children.
  • Sometimes a 44 ounce Sonic Dr. Pepper can make a mom’s troubles seem smaller.
  • Homework makes a mom want to cry and cuss.
  • Moms sometimes longingly and impatiently count down the days ’til summer break.
  • Boys can sometimes shoot hoops in the driveway for hours at a time.
  • Girls can sometimes listen to music in their room for hours at a time.
  • Three doctor appointments in one day is two too many.
  • Boys will do nearly anything for food.
  • Having a not-so-coordinated 8-year-old boy feed his 8-year-old sister in the van is not always the best of ideas.
  • Life is filled with laughter and surprises.
  • It is necessary to laugh so one doesn’t cry.

Out of the Mouths of Loving Brothers

Tonight I had Zippy feed Chloe her dinner.

We were in the car waiting for Elliot’s soccer practice to end.

I figured it would be easier for Zippy to feed Chloe in the back of the van than it would be for me to crawl back there, get situated, and feed her.

And I promised him 3 Oreos if he would comply without making a mess.

Since FOOD is Zippy’s love language, he took on the challenge happily.

I know some of you are already thinking that this story will end in disaster.  But it really wasn’t too bad.

He very quickly realized it would be quite a challenge to feed her without making a mess.  He tried to bail on our agreement.  The reminder of  “no cookies”  kept him focused and determined.

Also rather quickly, his arm grew tired from lifting the heavy pureed food all the way into Chloe’s mouth, and he begged to take a break.  (This made me wonder if maybe that’s the reason he prefers to feed himself in shifts — maybe his arm grows too tired to continue . . . .  Yeah, whatever.)  I replied heartlessly, “If you take a break, you will receive no cookies.”  So he continued through the pain and exhaustion.

As he began feeding Chloe again, he sighed heavily, shook his head, and exclaimed, “Golly Jeepers!  She is such a pain!”

If the statement hadn’t nearly made me burst out laughing, I may have scolded Zippy for calling his sister a pain and reminded him that she has feelings even though she can’t tell him to “STOP!” when he’s being mean to her.

Even if Zippy wasn’t happy feeding Chloe, Chloe was very happy and even blessed by Zippy feeding her.  She just looked sweetly and sincerely and deeply into his eyes with every spoonful.  Her eyes were definitely saying, “Thank you,”  and  “I love you,”  and  “I like this.”

After a few small messes and lots of complaining, the feeding was done.  As Zippy handed the spoon to me and grabbed his Oreos, he again grumbled, “She is such a pain!”

Homemaking Tips

I just read a post on a blog that I follow.

It is a timely post for me to read — I feel like my home and thus my life are a little out of control right now.

Read this post to get 4 easy everyday tips for keeping your house “clean enough!”

“Clean Enough” –Love it.

Not Me! Monday

Today I’m joining MckMama and lots of other bloggers in Not Me! Monday, where we are confessing many things that we absolutely did not do this week!  (Of course we didn’t!)  You can click on over to her blog to see what other bloggers have not been doing!

Here are a few things I have not been doing:

I did not give Elliot permission to hit Zach as hard as he can every time Zach touches him in an attempt to help Zach learn to quit touching others all the time.  And I did not have to act a little unsympathetic toward Zach a couple of times when he was slugged full-force by his usually-non-hitting big brother.  And I did not have to pull Elliot aside two different times to instruct him that “if you’re not going to hit him as hard as you can, then don’t do it at all.  For it to work, you’ve got to make it count.”  Yikes!  I would never say things like that!  No way!  Nope! That sounds almost cruel.

I did not run out of my morning-ritual chocolate milk this week and then attempt (unsuccessfully) to make an alternative with cocoa powder.  Since everyone knows cocoa powder Does Not Dissolve in a cold liquid, I certainly wouldn’t have tried such a thing.  And then when I was SO AMAZED at how dry the cocoa powder still was after minutes and minutes of VIGOROUS stirring, I did not call Paul to “come watch how amazing this is!”  When I had Paul’s attention, I did not stir and stir so vigorously for the demonstration that I stirred a hole in the side of the glass, sending milk and dry cocoa powder all over the table and the floor and the newspaper that Paul was trying to read.  No way!  Not me! And my husband’s response was not, “Wow.  That IS amazing!” as he watched the milk and powder run all over the place.  The whole episode did not nearly make me cry — I had missed my morning ritual of chocolate milk, after all, which is just as bad as some people missing their coffee.  And then (Brace yourselves, ladies.) Paul did not jump up and insist on cleaning up all the mess I had just made.  Perhaps sensing my frustration and my barely hidden tears, he did not send me from the room and clean up the whole thing.  Wow.

Lastly, I did not go back to bed today and take the best nap in the history of our planet.  Nope.  Not me! I had things to do and would not ignore those responsibilities.

How about you?  Anything you’ve not been doing this week?

An Expert

I read this on one of the blogs I follow.  I wanted to share it with you.

It’s true:  the doctors and therapists and teachers are all experts in their fields.  There are some really good ones out there.

But YOU are the expert on your child.

I am the expert on my children.

Make sure you make your voice heard.  Make sure you ask your questions.  Make sure you question decisions or treatments that don’t quite make sense to you.  Make sure you are your child’s voice.  Make sure you are the strong, noisy advocate that your child needs.  Make sure you are behaving like the expert you are!

And I will, too!

Say it with me now:  “I am an expert!”

Thank You!

I was writing Thank You notes today and was quite amused at something.

I bought a package of American Greeting thank-you notes.  Inside the package are some very interesting (if not hilarious) instructions and ideas:

Saying “Thank You” In Your Own Words

It’s easy to write a thank-you note from the heart . . . .  One of the following ideas may help you to get started:

  • Your thoughtfulness shows in everything you do.
  • To thoughtful you . . . from thankful me.
  • Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
  • How can I find the right words to thank you . . .
  • Your kindness and caring mean so much to me.
  • Thank you for being the person you are/Thanks for being you. . .
  • I appreciate the things you do so much. . .
  • You always know the perfect thing to do to make me feel special.

Does that totally crack you up??  A list of ideas for saying thank you in your own words??  Does it count as your own words if you use the ideas inside the package of cards??

Oh, me.  I’m easily amused.  And I had a really good laugh out of this one.  🙂

I especially love:  To thoughtful you . . . from thankful me.  Oh, my goodness!  I’d better stop before my giggling wakes the children!

“Nap” Time

While I attempted to take a nap on the couch on Sunday, a certain little girl did what she could to prevent any sleep.

She kept crawling up on top of me, perhaps to “cuddle.”  But her body is POKY and her shoes are HARD.  She is not graced with much grace, if you know what I mean.  And she kept letting the cold air in under my blanket.  Funny girl.

And she kept bringing me her crazy ball toy.  It is a HARD plastic ball that plays LOUD music and flashes with different colored lights.  She, of course, loves crazy ball.  It is right up her battery/electronics alley!  But it is not conducive to a Sunday afternoon nap.

Not Me! Monday

Today I’m joining MckMama and lots of other bloggers in Not Me! Monday, where we are confessing many things that we absolutely did not do this week!  (Of course we didn’t!)  You can click on over to her blog to see what other bloggers have not been doing!

Here are a few things I have not been doing:

I did not sleep in late every day of spring break!  Not me! I like to get up before my kids so I’m ready to bless and serve them.

I did not feed birthday cake to Zippy for breakfast at least once during spring break.  No way! That is not a healthy breakfast!

I did not clean Desitin off of something every day of spring break.  Nope.  That would be too hard to believe that something could be that messy!

I did not whine and cry all day Saturday and Sunday because the winter weather was back.  Nope.  Not me! I have more self-control than that.  And my emotions are not tied directly to the weather.  Nope.

How about you?  Anything you have not been doing?

Back to the Routine

I guess my birthday’s over.

Yesterday I told Zippy he could go get a tack and pop all of my wilting birthday balloons.

He loves that “job.”

Pop!  Pop!  Pop!

Chloe doesn’t completely love it.

She is intrigued by it and wants to participate in it, but then again — not!

Bravely moving closer in to the action. . .

Wow.  Up close, examining the precision with which Zippy deflates the balloons.

Zachary then looks proudly at his brave sister, wishing there were another 40 balloons to pop!

The kids’ routine:  Zippy and Chloe are back in school after spring break.  Keeping my fingers crossed that Chloe makes it all day at school today.

Elliot is home sick with strep.  Ugh.  If it’s not one thing, it’s another!  (Thankfully this is NOT part of our regular routine.)

My routine that I returned to today:  Did 8 items of medical paperwork.  Made 5 doctor appointments — all for Chloe.  Emailed 5 teachers with spring break updates.  Paid a medical bill.  Made a handful of phone calls.  Volunteered for school.  Volunteered for church.  Cared for a sick kid.  Updated my blog.  🙂

Another Ordinary Day!

Surprise! Surprise! and Surprise!


My husband sneaked and hacked and pirated to post a birthday message on my blog.  And he did it from his work!  Thanks, Babe, for the kind words!!  Perhaps I should rework my passwords and stuff!  🙂


Last night, two of my fun friends were planning a surprise girls night out for my birthday.  I was quickly and unknowingly ruining the whole thing so they had to call and spill the beans yesterday afternoon.  We got pretty toes together (Yay!!  I finally have painted toes again!) and then had a yummy and fun dinner together.  Thanks, girls!

(I cannot believe I just posted a photo of my FOOT on the internet!!)


Sunday night while I was getting the house ready for our regular Sunday night Bible study and Paul was gone with the kids “to the park,” the doorbell rang.  It was a friend; she was there to “take me for a ride.”

Hmmmm.  I immediately knew that she was taking me to a surprise.

My first thought was, “Oh no!  My kids look like ragamuffins!”

Then I was secretly relieved we wouldn’t be having Bible study at our house because my vacuum cleaner was out of commission and didn’t suck up all the grass and dirt that the kids had been dragging in on their feet all day.

I asked a couple questions:  Does the babysitter know we won’t be here for Bible study?  Yes.  Will we be outside or inside?  Inside.  Will we be at someone’s house or elsewhere?  Elsewhere.  Do I need to take food for Chloe, or does Paul already have it?  Don’t know.

I quickly grabbed a clean shirt and food for Chloe and ran out the door with my friend on her secret mission.

We ended up at our family’s favorite pizza restaurant.  I was expecting the party room to be filled with our regular Sunday night folks.  How nice!

But to my surprise, the party room was full and overflowing with not only our regular Sunday night folks, but also with lots of other friends and family — past and present, local and out-of-town, and all very much loved and appreciated!

I. Was. Surprised.

Paul has tried to surprise me a million times in the past 20 years, but he’s never been able to pull it off.  But this time, I never suspected a thing until my friend showed up at my door.  Wow!

There was pizza.  There was cake.  There were flowers.  There were balloons.  There were cards and gifts.

Friends took turns standing up and saying nice things about me.

I was thrilled and overwhelmed.  If I were a crier, I’d have been bawling.  But I’m not so I stood there looking like a dork, I’m sure.

My in-laws were there from Corpus Christi!  What a surprise and blessing!

My best friend since kindergarten was there with her husband, her two sisters, and her niece and nephew.

Church friends filled the room and blessed my heart!

Two friends gave me a tiara to wear during my party.  Someone referred to me as the princess — I corrected them, informing them that I was the queen!  They were seriously making me feel like a queen.

And even my little Princess enjoyed herself at my party.  She as usual detested the birthday song, but she loved the balloons and even ate a little bit of icing from my cake.  And she didn’t seem too bothered by the crowd or the noise.

Amazing that all these busy friends of mine were all in the same room at the same time, celebrating ME!  Wow!

Turning 40 is not so bad after all.

(And all of these surprises will certainly keep me young!)

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