Saturday, December 27, 2008

a day in the life of mom

Tonight the topic at the dinner table was respect. What is it? How do we show it? How do we not show it? (yes, we fully enacted different scenarios of respecting and disrespecting each other...) Following dinner, hubby and I discussed various aspects of our incredible parenting skills that needed some polishing. We agreed that more creativity needed to be used in the area of disciplining rather than our ever so famous...."STOP" cry (actually it's a yell....but who wants to admit that they actually yell at their children.....?) Feeling ever so confident that we were turning the corner on this parenting skill we rewarded our compliant and well adjusted offspring with the treat of sleeping by the Christmas tree in their sleeping bags. They were so delighted!

No sooner had they settled in when all of a sudden I hear a blood curdling scream. As I jumped up to go to the living room I look up to see the youngest stumbling into our room with his hand on his forehead. As he looks up at me I see it......the BLOOD...lots and lots of blood...horror movie type of blood running down his face.

Now my mind is running in a million different directions...emergency room or urgent care?....where are my wallet and keys? I in fact wearing a bra? Suddenly I hear myself screaming at the top of my lungs, "J WHAT DID YOU HIT YOUR BROTHER WITH? WHAT DID YOU HIT HIM WITH? COME HERE AND TELL ME RIGHT NOW? WHAT DID YOU HIT HIM WITH?" While I'm yelling this the youngest catches a glimpse of his bloody face in the mirror and loses it.

I now realize I must gain control of the situation. The small voice in the back of my head says, "remember head lacerations bleed quite a bit..." I finally gain composure, take care of the patient and then turn my attention to my oldest. He had in fact explained the entire scenario to me while I was nursing the patient...younger brother was trying to stick his behind in older brother's face, used the rocking chair as his stability bar and landed head first into the fireplace hearth!
The funny thing was, in the midst of the chaos...this 6 year old remained completely calm...even to the point to assisting me with items daddy couldn't find. I looked him right in the eyes and said, "I love you and I am so sorry for yelling at you. I was wrong, will you forgive me?" He looked back at me with his big brown eyes, said, "yes" and then responded, "yelling at me like that was disrespectful wasn't it?"


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Decorating Can be Dangerous

Okay, I admit it...I am a blog voyeaur...I spend far too much time on the internet looking at inspiring art and decorating blogs. One of my all time faves is A Nesting Place. This is such a fun site and today she is hosting a

So here is my simple addition to the long list of beautiful postings:

(notice the paper in the son's Christmas list to Santa..he thinks since Santa comes down the chimney to drop off the presents that is where he should, in fact, pick up the list!)

(close up of my goo-gaw bow...hmmm what else could I possible stick in here!)

(close up of my joy)

Now you might be wondering about the title of the this post...well unfortunately my sassy garland was not put together without drawing blood. Did I slice my finger whilst cutting out all the cute snowflakes? Did I get a paper cut? what danger could possibly lurk while putting up a holiday garland on the mantel of all places? OOOhhh pretty:

Nice black eye...what you might not be able to see is the dent in my forhead (oh and lovely bruise) at the exact location of the red spot/cut. How did this happen? Let me paint a quick portrait:
Excitement over creating the best ever garland for the mantel drives decorating crazed woman to hunt down every available piece of anything that is not nailed down to use in her holiday extravaganza! Believing that three baskets full of ribbon is not nearly enough she reaches on the shelf above her head for the LARGE GLASS container that holds even MORE of her ribbon collection. (you can never have too much ribbon!) Because of her greed and insanity she is not careful enough to notice the container's LARGE GLASS LID that comes sliding off the container and is launching itself at mach speed toward her head like a flying saucer! At impact with her very hard Polish heritage head the LARGE GLASS LID shatters into 4 equal pieces. She is left grabbing her throbbing noggin trying very hard not to use any despicable language...but oh how it HURTS. She decides to look in the mirror to find a large goose egg appearing in the middle of her forhead. For fear that she will have to attend church the next day looking like a character from Star Trek she lies down, ices her head and calls her mom (states away in Colorado) for a good cry. (Mind you the hubby had just taken the boys out so she would have some "quality"decorating time!!! so much for that!) Thank goodness for trendy bangs that are currently all the rage, for she was, in fact, able to cover the goose egg on said forehead the following morning at church. It was not until three days later did she wake up to notice what she thought was a rash under her eye. But, truth betold, she finally realized that it was a lovely shiner.
Boy howdy next time I'm wearing a hard hat.

Sunday, December 7, 2008


What I'm learning about boys:

1. There is adventure in everything (even going to the bathroom)

2. If the possibility of getting dirty does not exist...then it must be boring.

3. A boy is only truly still when he is asleep (and with my younger this can be an arguable point)

4. No decibel is too loud...they can and will find a way to be even LOUDER.
5. Did I mention that dirt is one of the major food groups?

6. When nurtured properly with love, encouragement and safe boundaries boys will flourish and grow into some of the most amazing creatures. Sure I don't always completely understand their ways and/or obsession with dirt but I thoroughly relish the sight of their passion for life and exploration of the world around them.

I encourage all moms of boys to relax a bit more and enjoy the does get crazy at times...but I guarantee it will be the ride of your life!

Thursday, December 4, 2008


No...not on a deserted island but rather our very first TOOTH! woo hoo! I can hardly believe it! Just last week the dentist pointed out that the tooth was beginning to show some movement. J caught on quickly and began talking about how he was going to eat an apple and the tooth would fall out....well, he's been working this tooth all week. The other night at dinner (mind you he was being quite uncooperative during meal time and very close to being punished) I asked him about his tooth...he wiggled it a bit with wide eyes at how much it was moving...I encouraged, "push it forward as far as you can!"...cautiously he moved it forward and lo and behold it popped right out. With a mixed look of fear, excitement and wonder as to whether or not blood would spew forth, he gently laid it on the dinner table while mommy is screaming..."I've got to get the camera!"

Mind you my poor husband was trying to eat and would have much preferred that I saved this drama for post dinner. (He had earlier admitted that the "loose tooth" thing made him a little squeamish...ooops) Nonetheless, I spent the rest of the meal glancing at my 6 year old and wondering where time flies. I even turned to my husband and asked, "Didn't we just bring him home from the hospital?"

The toothfairy did visit and J was compensated for this momentus occasion. Well, another milestone marked...I'm having one of those out of body experiences where time seems to be flying by at breakneck speed. Christmas in just a few weeks and then the new year is upon us. I'm afraid I'm going to blink and he'll be asking for his driver's liscense...oh boy...

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Okay, it's been quite awhile since I've posted. Chalk it up to the crazies...just too much going on and I'm exhausted by the time everyone is in bed. However, I received a phone call from my sweet niece G and she stated that it had been far too long since I've posted and I really needed something new up and running. (I agree G...I am ashamed at how long it has been...and I've decided that I need to make blogging a regular part of my routine.)

So what to blog about? Not the crazy!? No...tonite I had another sweet interlude with one of my boys that really makes the crazies a distant memory.

It's been busy and I can tell that the insanity of things has begun to take its toll on the boys. They're wild, unfocused, grumpy...over it basically. So after we managed to wrestle them into bed I had a brief moment with both.

Tonight I had the opportunity to share with J about the last home my parents owned prior to their "retirement" condo. This was the home my brother, sister and I grew up in from elementary through college and my sister, marriage. It was a great house. Full of incredible memories and as I started to tell J story after story about the house I began to feel an ache for the past. The waterfall and pond my dad built that we would hang out around in the cool of the summer evenings. The porch with the glider swing, where you could take a nap during an afternoon rainshower. The view of the complete Colorado mountian range. The hill on the side of the house where we used to! I miss that house.

But it's not just the house I miss. I realize that I miss the home. These days I sense myself full of dissatisfaction over what my house doesn't have in size, shape, texture...whatever. Then I remember that old house had many a foible but as a child..I don't remember any of it. I simply remember how being there made me, loved, warm...home. That doesn't have anything to do with location, texture, size and has to do with the heart of the home. The family that resides within the walls of the structure.

It hit me tonight that I am missing the point as I try to creat the "perfect" home. It's not achieving the glossy magazine cover look. It boils down to how the heart of our home wraps its arms around us and draws us together. What memories are we building? Are we stretching wide the arms of our home and letting it embrace others? Does our home live and breathe?

Honestly, this wasn't the post I intended to write has somewhat taken on a life of its own. As I have written these words from my heart I am moved to stop and think seriously about the "home" I'm creating....the memories I'm leaving with my boys...I truly want our home to embrace love them and give them a sense of peace and restfulness. I'm praying that as I go into the busy holiday season I will stretch myself beyond the need for "perfection" and rest peacefully at the heart of our home.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Once a Mom, Always a Mom

As usual it has been forever since I've blogged. Well, what can I say, life has a tendency to get in the way and before you know it, a month has passed and my blog sits lonely and outdated!

The most recent activity in life has included a wonderful visit from my parents, starting a new part-time job and traveling for a weekend of performing (I'll get into that on another post entitled, "I Was a Rock Star for a Weekend"). Can I just share with you how much I love my parents? They are the most loving, fun, creative and selfless people I know and I am truly blessed to have them as my parents.
They have been here for almost 4 weeks; loving us, cleaning, cooking, keeping us all in line, caring for my kids while I was out of town, and helping a frazzled mommy get organized!

At times my mother and I will butt heads, briefly. Gone are the days of long drawn out arguments and silent treatment of my teen years. Why did I ever think that they knew nothing and I knew everything? You see, now I understand what it means to be a mom, to feel the pain when your child is hurting or frustrated, to always want to help, to fix, to soothe, even when they may need to do it all on their own. It's amazing how the moment you enter motherhood the playing field is leveled and you begin to have a greater understanding of your parents. Whether or not your relationship is positive or negative, you begin a journey that is a roller coaster ride of the past and present colliding at the intersections of you life.

I thank the Lord that I have had incredible, real examples of humans striving to be the best parents they now how to be, by God's grace. Thank you mom and dad for all of your love, support and guidance, past, present and future. You have been my Jesus with skin on. I love you, always and forever!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Welcome Seester!

I'm so happy to have drug my lovely seester into the world of blogging. I'm looking forward to some great posts! Be sure to check her out at .
I would like to take this opportunity to brag on my dearest seester. She is one incredible lady. (She'll probably kill me for the above posted photo, but the truth be told I think is represents her quite well...friendly, cheerful, kind, fun and funny.) She is always there to help; physically, emotionally and spiritually. We have the best times together. (the teen years were a bit rough...there was some hand-to-hand combat regarding wardrobe sharing...not so much any we just deal blows at the thrift store over who gets the good shoes!)
I love her so much and have to say that she is definitely my very bestest friend forever (BFF!). I simply love hanging out with her. She is an awesome wife and mother, incredible volunteer (this girl can get things done!), great friend to many, wildly creative and talented and a delightful child of God. I am proud to call her "seester".
It is my prayer as that someday we will have the opportunity to live closer to one another. Ever since I got married we have lived very far apart. I miss her soooooo much. Honestly, there are many days I wish that I could just drop by her house...or meet her down at the best thrifting spots or have a regular Saturday morning coffee and garage sale date. Our geographical distance is one of my greatest sadnesses. My sister brings me such joy and I love her so incredibly much.

My lovely seester...I love you with all of my heart! I always will...thank you for always loving me! - your big sis -J

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

No a-Way!

My youngest has picked up a new expression...instead of "No Way!" (which I believe may be one of my favorite verbal reactions to anything they say that is relatively exciting) he will exclaim, very passionately, "No a-Way!" The first time I heard it I asked him to repeat it..and sure enough there was the "a" in front of the "way". Makes me smile everytime I think about it!

The transition to school has been steady. Today was in fact the first day B actually entered his classroom, hung up his backpack and sat in his chair to start the day. Our normal routine last week was..."mommy, drop me off by the door and tell Miss Christa not to touch me." I then left to him crying either on the floor by the door or on the floor in some other random part of the room. But today, he marched in confidently and told Miss Christa, "I'm not shy anymore!" Well, hallelujah and hot-damn! I wish I could share some incredible parenting tip that brought about this change, however, I seriously think God gave me a break because He noticed my mental health was taking a blow and I needed a pick-me-up. Now mind you...I will be holding my breath tomorrow morning...because as we all know...the planets may not be aligned properly and the wind may be blowing in the wrong direction and well that can mess everything up!

My biggest prayer is that we will make it through an entire week of school before another hurricane shows up....Hanna is starting to hammer down (I hear the rain right now)...behind her is tropical storm Ivan (?) and then Josephine is lining up nicely off the coast of the Bahamas...welcome to the beginning of school and hurricane season!

J's teacher asked for a baby picture to use on a project...I started looking through this the same kid who confidently waltzes off to Kindergarten?

Here's Mr. "No A-way!" not even a day old....time certainly does fly....
It seems like a-way!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

1st day of school vs. T.S. Fay

Handsome boy...first day of Kindergarten

Yes, there is a very handsome preschooler there...yelling, "don't take my picture!" (It's very paparazzi!)

Yea, we did actually start school on Monday. Things went well. J walked straight into his class sat down and said, "mom, I'm not going to miss you!" Well, alrighty then...we're off to take B to his first day of preschool....
You can tell by his first day pictures that it wasn't such an easy transition. He actually did fine. He just has to take his time and size up the situation, decide who's who and what's what, figure out his angle and then he eases into place.

I did have one brief blissful encounter of silent, quiet, move-at-my-own-pace shopping that day. It was a bit do tend to become highly aware of everyone else's "children noise"...

Well, it was all over far too soon...Tropical Storm Fay hit...oh the rain...the never ending rain....I do believe we encapsulated 40 days of rain in the last three. This means that there has been no school. This evening for about one hour I did believe that my children were going to school tomorrow...however, school is once again closed.

I have posted a few pics (sorry about the poor quality) just to show the amount of rain we have encountered here at home. As I told my mom (who calls frequently during storms to make sure we're not flooding) we live on a "mountain" here on our property. Not actually, it's just that the house does sit a bit elevated to the rest of the property....blah, blah, blah...hence the house does not flood.
Here is the backyard looking a bit like the entrance to the Everglades....
Another Everglade shot out the back....Why there is my driveway on the left...yes, the river to the left of the picture...the lake on the right is normally a grassy clearing.
The retention "lake" again, it's normal existence is a pond, about 1/4 of this size...however, we're are actually getting close to retention "ocean"....Thankfully, our power has stayed on pretty consistently...this is my greatest fear in a storm...not electrocution, or the food going bad in the fridge, or trees falling on the house...the AIR CONDITIONING must never go out in my house in the summer....I must NEVER feel the intense HUMIDITY inside my house...I can usually last, oh about 20 minutes before I'm grabbing the keys, putting the kids in the car and heading to the nearest A/C.

I have rambled enough about all this. School will re-start again on Monday. Perhaps I might get a better picture of B, who knows. Until then, grab the playdough and Legos...let's build us a boat!

Monday, August 11, 2008

bad mommy moment #65,893,123

okay..okay...this is supposed to be a blog about all the things I'm thankful my beautiful children...that I have one last, beautiful week to enjoy with them prior to the start of school. Today, I was thankful that they would BOTH be starting school this year and that it's only one week away! Today was one of those days. Apparently I was trying to get too much done. Their "don't let mommy complete projects" radar was fine tuned and running overtime!

Big brother was testing his ability to completely annoy little brother (without so much as flinching). Little brother in return practiced the negative response level of different styles, volume levels and intensities of screaming.

Adding to this lovely parade of "who is in control" is mommy...steroid pill popping mommy. Last week I had a pretty severe case of bronchitis and part of my medical regime was a series of steroids. These things can be pretty evil...or at least they can make a person pretty evil (my husband will in fact vouch for this). I felt like I was going out of my mind. My girlfriend reminded me of the time one of the boys was on an oral steroid as a grumpy, nasty and overall unpleasant the drugs made him....why yes, I remember because I am currently behaving just like him!

I did manage to make it through the day with lots of Lamaze breathing (didn't need it for my C-sections, but I sure use it in daily parenting) and about a dozen timeouts for both boys.

Tomorrow is another day...another chance...a fresh start...I think we'll head to the beach and let the sand, surf and breeze blow the memory of today away. To second chances!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Fun with the cousins...

I have been incredibly lame regarding my blog postings this summer..shame on me! I wanted to share a few pics tonight of a fun evening we had together with the cousins while in Denver. We had spent the day exploring the Natural History Museum and then assembled in the park behind the museum for a picnic dinner. Mama J always has fun props on hand for the making of the most incredible adventures and this evening was full of fun.
She had made capes for all of the kids. Knight capes for the boys and princess capes for the girls. The foam swords, shields and helmets were a huge hit....
Somehow Frankenstein managed to make an appearance...but trusty Lord J defended Princesses G and B with great honor!
Fair Maiden A was distraught with Lord J for being much to fierce with poor Frank. "He only wanted to join in the fun!" So she gave him a lashing and reminded him that tie-dye and camouflage are not a fashion statement.

There was even a rare spotting of "Camera Guy" Pappa J with J and B. It is very difficult to catch this creature without it's knowledge of being photographed. Again, very rare footage.

What a great evening. It still amazes me when I stop and look at each child, to see a bit of my brother or sister in a smile, in the motion of a hand or the sound of a laugh. I have brief recollections of the three of us at 9, 8 and 3 years old....camping, playing on the beach....

Fast forward too many years to admit and I love the feeling of our children, together like we once were; playing, laughing and loving on each other. Dear Lord, please give us the opportunity for many more of these memory building opportunities.

Friday, July 18, 2008

it's been way too long

Once again, I've fallen short on the blogging. We are in the... "post-vacation, return to reality, oh no, both my boys are getting ready to start school...and did I mention I'm going to work part-time" transition. It really is going rather smoothly...really...

I have made one new realization, however...once children start school (preschool or beyond) they become accustomed to a certain amount of daily stimulation. I am realizing rather quickly that my sole purpose everyday until school starts is to try and wear out my 5 year old. These last few weeks since we've been home his energy level has increased exponentionally on a daily basis. Sometimes I just stop and watch in amazemet at the electric energy shooting out of his body...his arms and legs going every which way..the running, hopping, jumping...I'm tired thinking about it. My youngest has not experienced school yet...I'm bracing myself for next summer...I now understand why parents have a long "activities list" for the hour school ends and summer begins...I understand why people build pools in their backyards...I'm thinking about getting an old fashioned push mower (the ones prior to gas) and making J go for it.

I really do love their's just that there is so much of it all at once...I have quite a bit to learn...those older and wiser simply smile (do I see amusement in their eye) and part with the words, "it's just the beginning..."

Well, this ol' mommy better get some sleep...I have some "wild things" to run tomorrow.....

Friday, June 27, 2008

where in the world?

Where in the world have I been? We'll the boys and I have travelled many miles to spend 4 sweet weeks with my family in beautiful Colorado. I don't know how much longer we will be able to run away for weeks on end to enjoy grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles and dry warm weather!

There's been tons of fun! Lot's of playing, VBS this week with a CAR theme of all things! (Talk about exciting for two car fanactic boys.), swimming, water fights, dress up...and that's just been with one set of cousins. The second set just returned from their summer vacation to distant relatives and so we get to pick up fun activities with them starting this weekend.

The boys have truly enjoyed the time with my family. We still have yet to make it to the mountains...of course we get to see their majestic beauty everyday as we drive from one place to the next. They are always there...tall, strong...majestic. I long for those mountains and look forward to a few quick jaunts to take in their incredible beauty this next week before we depart.

No pics today...unfortunately, I'm on the wrong computer to download any...will try tonight to get some up and running.

Colorado is truly a beautiful place to spend some summer vacation....I still dream that someday in the future God will lead us back to this place....but He is also impressing upon me my need to find contentment wherever He has chosen to place me at this season in my life. A little hard for such a control freak!

Lord, you know my "comings and my goings" (Psalm 139) know my thoughts before they even come into my head...may I keep my eyes fixed on you...the author and perfecter of my faith. Where you lead may I follow with a glad heart!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

reduce, reuse, recycle - ROBOTS

B is turning 4 in a couple of weeks. We are going to have a robot themed party. I've had this idea to use "environmentall friendly" decorations. Balloons, paper streamers, etc are fun and add so much to a celebration, however, I've been trying to think in terms of reducing the amount of waste we produce as a family. I'm far from perfection in this area....but I started to think "outside the box" to put together both fun and inexpensive decorations for celebrations.

I have been saving every paper and plastic recepticle that has passed through our home. I had a vision for this project when we first decided on the robot theme. Saturday the idea began to take shape.
I had so much fun building robots from all the "junk" (or as A said, "look, mommy is taking out the garabage!" when I carried out my bags of "stuff"). Here are some shots of the beginnings....
Of course, the minute the first robot appeared there were requests for personal robots to be made for each boy. B ended up with a cute (or as he put it "adorable") robot that then donned Batman's mask and superhero cape. (Batrobot, spent the night standing guard next to B's bed...he wanted to sleep with him but I figured Batrobot would end up as Batpancake in the morning) J had a few different favorites. He'd grab one I finished and then as soon as he saw the next he'd want that one instead. I tell you, parents really don't need to spend insane amounts of money on always comes back to the boxes. Last night the boys played with their "robots" for hours until bedtime.
In addition to the robot decorations, I made a celebration banner from my scrap pile of material. I've seen these online and wanted to make some forever. I plan on making another one as well to use at each birthday and family celebration. I think it will also satisfy my desire to create some traditions for our family celebrations.
I will have more updates about our weekend following.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

childhood is fleeting

The grumpies snuck up on me again today. It has taken me awhile to fight them back. This evening I spent some time reflecting on the two "rays of sunshine" that tend to light my way out of my funks. I'm constantly reminded of how quickly time flies; how quickly children today are forced to take on adult roles. War, poverty and homelessness drive children out of the sweetness of childhood into the stress and worry of adult life. Even on the other spectrum the pressure of performance, success and politically correct schedules keep children from enjoying the freedom and joy that childhood play creates.
I tend to wallow in self-pity about all I'm "doing" for the good of the family. Trying to create the perfect home, learning environment, spiritual base for the boys. It's not in the doing is it? It's in the being. Being in the moment. Being available to laugh, cry, have water fights, hug, snuggle and play make-believe.
Time is speeding by...soon I will have more time on my hands than I know what to do with...I will long for muddy feet running through the kitchen, someone to beg me to play Legos, wanting to "help make" in the kitchen. I will strain to hear voices ask me to stay in bed and snuggle for "5 more times".
Next month my baby turns 4. School will be a part of each day. Older brother will enter his lifelong relationship with education.
Dear Lord, may I be faithful with these incredible creatures you've entrusted to me. May I show love, patience, self-control. May I guide, direct and encourage hearts so open and vulnerable. I know that I will only hold them briefly...You, Lord, have them for an eternity...may I be faithful.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

sweet serenade

It was an incredibly sweet moment. Time stood still and I relished the purity of the creative spirit. Just the other night J and I were cuddling prior to his bedtime. (I often wrestle with the whole children need to be sent to bed alone thing. Honestly, the cuddling before bed is one of the sweetest moments for me...always has been. I think I hang on to it because I realize it will be gone before I know it!) I decided this particular evening that singing would be soothing and would take me back to the days I cuddled a baby in my arms and sung sweet lullabies and hymns while rocking. J chose to go first and what followed where priceless words from a child's heart. He sang of friendship, prettiness, bullies; I suppose whatever he had faced during the day. Now you must understand the J has not quite found the gift of musical pitch and melody, yet. He is very passionate however, about words, inflection and hand motions, all songs must have hand motions. He sang one song in a rock rendition followed by a rap and then finally a sweet love song. This love song is what truly pierced my heart. Before he started he told me I could in fact say the song was beautiful if I so choosed. It was. He sung of my prettiness and wonderfulness as a mom and his love for me. Time stood still.

Finally, it was time for him to go to bed. As I tucked him in he asked me to sing one more song (I had sung him some of my favorite hymns.) I started to sing "Jesus Love Me" and he stopped me. "Mommy, sing me a song about loving me." Now I must admit I'm not quite comfortable with my own ability to create songs without printed music to follow, give me a paint brush or fabric and I'll go for it, but create music and words with nothing? Scary. A mother's love however, knows no fear and so I plunged ahead. As I let myself go and concentrated on my overwhelming love for this creative, passionate, beautiful boy the song poured out from my heart. I don't remember what exactly I sang or the tune that was heard but by the look on the face of my son I knew I had hit the right chord. From the depths of my heart came a song of love.