Tuesday, June 29, 2010

How does this happen?

How does this baby girl...

Born on this freeway...
In the front seat of this minivan...
Turn into this beautiful, sweet, fireball of a seven year old?

Not sure I'm ok with it. (Not the beautiful, sweet, fireball part, but the growing up part.)

Happy birthday, Ashlynn! 

(If you want to read her crazy birth story, it's here.)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

You know it might be time to mow the lawn when...

You very nearly lose your seven year old in the backyard jungle. 

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Sacrament Meeting Circus

First, a few definitions, because I tend to forget that Mormons have their own language.  On Sundays, in a spirit of enforced family togetherness, our worship meetings are three hours long.  (I once heard someone say that there must be something wrong with Mormons because we take three hours to accomplish what everyone else does in one.  Days like yesterday, I tend to agree....)  Our first meeting is called Sacrament Meeting, a one-size-fits-all, pile the whole family (yes, including the crazy toddlers and the squabbling siblings) in the pew of your choice, and try to minimize the chances of your own personal Armageddon erupting in your row so as not to impede the worship of others kind of meeting.

OK, now that everyone is up to speed, I have to tell you about yesterday.  It was one of those meetings that was horrifying as it was happening, but the only thing that kept me from wanting to run away with a paper bag over my head was realizing that it might be funny later.

We started the meeting off well.  Against all odds, the five (and a half) of us arrived at church ten minutes early, all with clean, matching clothes.  I should have taken a picture, because that was the best it was going to get.  As soon as we sat down on our bench, Max escaped, running joyfully down the aisle, the entire congregation laughing at him as he went.  (I still maintain it's only funny when it's not your kid.)  When he paused in his crazy escape, with that look on his face, I knew it was only going to result in one thing: diapers and wipes.

I grabbed them from my husband, and headed to the nearest changing table as fast as possible.  It wasn't until I put Max down on the changing table that I realized that his Pampers had not even come close to their promise of protecting you from leaks, as both my arm and his church pants could now testify.  (Church pants that he had only been wearing for a grand total of 15 minutes, because his first pair had to be retired to the laundry room after a nasty macaroni and cheese incident at lunch time.)  Of course, I had only grabbed the diaper and wipes, so I brought my little boy back into sacrament meeting (which had now started) wearing his shirt, vest, diaper and shoes.  (Which of course resulted in my eight year old exclaiming, "Why is Max naked?" without even attempting to whisper.) Thankfully, I had just restocked the diaper bag, so we had an alternate plan: a pair of jeans.  I've never dressed a kid in sacrament meeting before.  Chalk that one up to experiences I wish to never have again.

All went fairly normally ("Mom, she's touching me!"  "Why can't I sit by Daddy? She sat by Daddy last time!") until the time for the sacrament.  Our congregation has been emphasizing reverence, so it was pretty quiet. Max had been sipping on a water bottle, and chose that quietest moment possible to let out a huge, window-rattling, teenage boys would be jealous belch.  Immediately, every person within a four-bench radius whipped their heads around to see Max, beaming with pride, his giggling sisters and his mortified parents.  It took a few minutes for my face to return to its normal color, and for all the stilfed laughs from those around us to calm down.

After the sacrament crisis, the bag of pretzels got spilled all over, and Max made yet another escape attempt.  Tom chased his this time, and when they came back a few minutes later, Max had green all over his white vest, and gum in his mouth which he promptly spit on the floor.  Tom disavowed any knowledge of either the gum or the green stuff.  I don't believe him.

While the girls were fighting over the colored pencils, we turned just in time to see that Max had managed to open the water bottle and was proceeding to pour it out on the bench and all over himself.  More giggling from the girls ensued, while Tom and I reminded ourselves that screaming out in frustration was probably not the best course of action.  I took Max in my lap while Tom tried to sop up the mess with a few measly kleenexes.  He was screaming and squirming to play in the water he had so kindly dumped out, so I offered him the iPod to play with as a last resort.

It was when he promptly took the iPod and launched it into the head of the four year old boy in front of us, making him burst into tears, that I declared that sacrament meeting was over for us and we spent the rest of the time in the hall, wondering who thought church with an 18 month old boy was a good idea in the first place.

Please, good readers, make me feel better.  Tell me I'm not the only one whose family erupts into chaos the minute we step into church!  Someone out there has to have an embarassing church story, right?  Right?  Please?  Someone?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Fun at Mom and Dad's House

The following is an actual conversation that took place as I was getting ready for another day of extreme violining. I was standing in the bathroom, applying my industrial strength concealed in a futile attempt to make the bags under my eyes disappear, when Ashlynn ran gleefully down the hall.

"Mom!" she squealed. "Look at this picture I found of you and Holly!"

Aaah,yes. The goldmine of embarrassing pictures that can be found at your parents' house.

"Look at your hair! It's huge!" Ashlynn continued.

By this time Abby had joined the party. "Mom, your dress was really ugly," she contributed.

"And you had braces!" Ashlynn said, horrified.

They both took off down the hall with the offending picture, giggling happily, leaving me wishing for plastic surgery instead of concealer. Just as I was about to give up on getting ready and crawl under the covers for the rest of the day in embarassment, Ashlynn came running back in the bathroom.

"It's okay, Mom. We love you anyway."

I think I'll keep her.

And no, I'm not uploading a copy of the picture. Blogging with an iPhone, remember? And my poor sister is innocent in all of this. And if I remember right, she had a major fever the day that picture was taken, so I'll save it for when I need some blackmail material.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

I'm not dead (It just feels like it)

If it's June, it means I have dropped off the face of the earth to schlep my family to Suzuki Violin camp, more specifically the Intermountain Suzuki String Institute.

To avoid massive drives everyday, and save a scrap of sanity, I packed up approximately 57 suitcases full of everything we own and moved into my parents' basement for the week.

I haven't even opened my computer in a week. All of the blogosphere could have imploded, and I'd never know, because me entire life this week has revolved around my eight year old and her violin. By the time I get back to my parents' house, practice with Abby, (yeah, six hours of class during the day and practice at night. Tons o' fun...) and get everyone fed, bathed and in bed, there's nothing I can do but fall into bed completely exhausted. I'm not sure I could form a complete sentence this week that doesn't include the words "violin," "perpetual motion" or "Bach Double."

In fact, I'm sitting in a fiddle class right now, typing this blog post on my iPhone, so you'll have to excuse me if my auto spell-correct changes a typo into something obscene.

And we're in the middle of yet another bizarre medical crisis, because it's been two whole weeks since someone has been in the hospital or urgent care. This time, it's me, with a knee swollen approximately to the size of a basketball, and the doc at the instacare casually tossing around words like "MRI" "orthopedic surgeon" and "knee surgery." Fun, right? More about this later, after I'm off the heavy-duty painkillers and feeling more like a person. Or at least have access to a real keyboard.

So there you have it. Violins, knee surgery, and narcotics. Aren't you glad you stopped by today?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

School's Out for summer

(Insert loud Alice Cooper music here.)
(I thought it was Queen.  I really did.  Thanks to Alicia, who decided to de-lurk and correct me so that I don't look like an idiot!)

The Good News: As of 11:30 this morning, my kiddos will be out of school for the summer.
The Bad News: A of 11:30 this morning,k  my kiddos will be out of school for the summer.

The Good News: I will no longer be solely responsible for entertaining my 18-month old.
The Bad News: I will now be responsible for entertaining the 8 year old, the 6 year old, and the 18 month old.

The Good News: I don't have to pack lunches first thing in the morning before I've even had breakfast.
The Bad News: I now have to come up with lunches for everyone everyday, and can't cop out anymore by telling them, "Today is a school lunch day."

The Good News: No more waking up early to do the before school routine.
The Bad News: Now I have to wake up early to teach violin lessons.  (Who thought that was a good idea?)

The Good News: I am going to be the super organized, efficient, fun mom this summer.
The Bad News: I have no idea how to actually go about doing that...

The Good News: The girls will be home with us all summer.
The Bad News: I no longer have the option of sending them away to school.

The Good News: I now have helpers around the house.
The Bad News: I now have to come up with alternate times to do the errands, because I'd rather scratch out my eyeballs with a plastic fork than take all three of them grocery shopping.  ( Learned my lesson about that several times last summer.)

The Good News: Long summer nights, cookouts, camping trips, swimming pools, being outside, farmer's markets, corn on the cob, fresh tomatoes, bike riding, (but not down hills!) and lots of seemingly extra time.
The Bad News: School starts again August 23rd.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Mothering a toddler

Mothering a toddler sometimes feels like negotiating with a terrorist.  A terrorist who has very few words and very loud screams.  A small terrorist that makes you think that torture should be redefined to include listening to your son tantrum for a half hour straight for no discernable reason.

Mothering a toddler means reading "Brown Bear" fifteen times a day, then switching it up with "Baby Bear" just for variety.  But it also means smiling every time you finish the book and watch your toddler flip the book to the beginning, sign "more book" and then look at you expectantly.

Mothering a toddler means that you can feel very satisfied with yourself for cleaning a room top to bottom, only to discover that your toddler has simultaneously destroyed two other rooms.

Mothering a toddler means that you will constantly find bizarre things in even more bizarre places.  Just yesterday, I found a used Qtip in the van, (ew!) shoes in the bathtub, a credit card in my violin case, Townhouse crackers everywhere, and balls of every shape, size, variety, and sport in every room of my house.

Thus, Mothering a toddler means that you will never have a clean house.  I'm starting to understand and respect that sometimes the best I can expect is for everyone to be dressed and fed.  And not necessarily in clean clothes or healthy food either. 

Mothering a toddler means that some mornings, you just let him in the backyard.  Even if he doesn't have shoes on, or is still wearing pajamas, or hasn't had a diaper change.  Just to stop the blessed screaming and find a moment to yourself.

Mothering a toddler means security objects.  And when its a boy toddler, that means that you never again get to leave the house without his little toddler-sized basketball.  On the flipside, it also means that as long as he has his basketball, he will stay in nusery for a full two hours, practicing his baby jumpshot on their perfectly-sized hoop.

Mothering a toddler requires a degree in a foreign language, and feeling insanely proud of yourself when you realize you can understand that "Bah!" can mean bath, ball, or the "Peek a boo Barn" game on the iPhone, depending on how its shouted at you.  It also means, however, that you're going to need lots of practice to discern the difference between "all done," and "water."

Mothering a toddler means that within a span of five minutes, you both threaten to sell him on ebay, and then smother him with kisses because he's just so cute.

Mothering a toddler means that you no longer get a say in the music you listen to, because the "Music Together" CD must always be playing. Then you surprise youself by singing the songs to yourself when no one is listening.

Mothering a toddler means having a little person in your bed most nights.  And finding out that when they're not there, or when they decide to cuddle up with Daddy instead, that you actually miss them sharing your pillow, kicking your stomach, and cuddling up underneath your chin.

Mothering a toddler means cherishing kisses, even when they come from noses covered in goo and faces covered in chocolate chip cookie crumbs.

Mothering a toddler means that the best laughs you get in a day can come from chasing them all around the kitchen on your hands and knees making animal sounds.   And you don't get tired of it.

Mothering a toddler means counting down the minutes until naptime or bedtime, then spending another five minutes watching them after they fall asleep because they look so perfect, peaceful, sweet and innocent.

Mothering a toddler means holding tiny hands as you cross the street and the parking lot, and feeling tears well up in your eyes, because you know its only a matter of time before you're chasing him across the parking lot instead.

Mothering a toddler means thanking Heavenly Father everyday for this crazy busy little person who stretches you more than you ever thought possible, but in return, brings you more joy than your heart feels that it can handle.
Related Posts with Thumbnails