Monday, October 18, 2010

light reading

I like to read. I love to read. Immersing myself in the story, oblivious to my surroundings is a favorite pasttime. I like to consider myself a reader of quality material. Even as an adult I revisit some of the classics of my youth, hoping to unfold new and exciting meaning from familiar or not so familiar stories.

Having children, more specifically boys, I find myself on a quest for reading material that will pull my young, male children into the exciting world of reading. Alas, it is not always that easy. So many little time...and yet many books...not so great!

However, picture books have always held a special place in my heart. Not only the great story...but great ART! Two of my favorite things! It's hard for me not to find a picture book I don't like. And so my latest and greatest addition to a secret personal collection:

Ah, yes...I have a personal love affair with my beloved Skippyjon Jones. He and I met when B was in preschool and I have remained a HUGE fan ever since. I is less than won't elevate my mind to spiritual heights...but sure puts a smile on my face.

I love you Skippyjon...

Monday, October 11, 2010


Wow! It's been months since I last posted...who knows if anyone is actually still reading. Does is really matter? I started this blog to keep my family in Colorado connected with us while we resided in Florida. Just over two whirlwind months ago we finally had the chance to relocate to Denver. I am ecstatic....exhausted, overwhelmed, emotional....and yet ecstatic.
This has been and still is a very trying season for me personally. Painful, joyful, exciting, gut altering. Honestly, I find myself spending most of my time hiding in denial...afraid to let myself go into that deep place within that really sees and feels the rawness of my experiences. Feeling most times as if I enter that place I will come completely undone. Deep down I know I need to come be remade, refined by this experience...but for now I must I keep myself flitting above the surface...doing laundry, making lunches, picking up dog poo, trying to keep food on the table with growing know...daily living stuff.
Soon...soon...I'll be able to find a safe place to finally let myself be with my deepest core...but for now...I'll observe the change of seasons from a safe distance. It's beautiful here....

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

getting ready

Well, the countdown continues. Almost 3 weeks till lift off. Wow! I can hardly believe it. My sister, brother-in-law and my parents have been working tirelessly to get the apartment ready for our arrival. I am truly humbled at my sister and brother-in-law's selflessness to open their home to us. They, and my parents, are truly my 'Jesus with skin on', during this life transition.
It gets a little overwhelming, thinking about, planning and actually packing up 8 years of life in Florida to move cross country. But I am sustained by the fact that in 3 weeks I'll be living...yes, living in Colorado once again, near my family whom I love and have missed desperately. I'm excited for my small family as we look forward to not only the awesomeness of Colorado (it truly is God's me...I've seen most of the U.S. and Colorado is in the top 5) but the incredible gift of being near family. A and I didn't have the opportunity to grow up near our cousins and it is something we so desperately wanted to give our children. Now, this gift is just around the corner. Summers and Christmases spent with cousins have established a fun and wonderful relationship that we're excited to see grow.
Well, it's back to the boxes. We'll be circling the wagons soon enough and heading West young man...onto new and thrilling adventures!

Monday, July 5, 2010

itchy tongue

So the other day I hear my boys in a usual conflict over some small LEGO piece. Unfortunately, it escalated and ended with the youngest dramatically crying that older brother had bit him. Biting? Seriously? No..not in my house! On a side boys really have never been biters. I've heard about kids who bite regularly...(you can ask my mother about my own personal history with biting)...but J and B have rarely used this tactic in hand to hand battle. So my feathers are more than a bit ruffled when I go in to discipline the situation.

Me, "J, did you bite your brother?" J, "No, his arm was in the way" (he showed me how B was 'reaching' for LEGOs out of the ginormous bin J seemed to be clutching in his lap and how his mouth innocently ensconced B's arm) Me, "J, did your brother's arm in any way shape or form make it's way into your mouth?" J, "Well, yes" Me, "Then you bit him?" J, "No, I was just itching my tongue!"

Itching his tongue on his brother's arm.

Very creative explanation. J ended up in a time out where I explained that his explanation was unfortunately very lame. Itching your tongue on someone elses arm is actually considered biting. I'm now left wondering how to harness this creativity with words and ideas and put it to better use. Perhaps he will grow up to be a political speech writer. Just a thought!

Monday, June 21, 2010

in transition...aka limbo

(boys at Star Wars weekend)

I'm having a a bit of hard time being "in transition". (Isn't this a birthing term...happening right before things get really difficult?) Just like birthing, the end result is awesome. Something I've been waiting for...years in fact...8 to be exactly! Now it's just around the corner. Starting a new chapter of our life story in Colorado.

The transition bit, though, is a little overwhelming. No bites on the house...job uncertainty...what to pack, what to get rid of (packing period....we have acquired way too much in 8 years of marriage and having children!). And yet, at my very core I have a peace. People look at me cross eyed when I say we haven't sold the house and my husband does not, in fact, have a job. I know, however, that God holds this family in the palm of His hand...the very hand that formed the world..that brought each of us into existence. Selling a house, providing a job...minor details in the great vastness of His awesomeness.

(B and Capt. Rex have us covered)

What keeps me afloat, motivated and pushing on is what lies ahead. Family, old friends, mountains, year round outdoor activities, creating with my mom and sister, cousins, Fall, Winter (I am soooooo not a Floridian...I love me some snow!), complete lack of humidity...did I mention family?

(J, the light saber welding Indiana Jones adventurer)

God provides. Always has...always will. So I will step forward in faith...knowing that my Heavenly Father has more than my back....He has my life!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I "heart" LEGOS

Today I would like to take this opportunity to put in my own two cents on subject near and dear to my heart. TOYS. As a parent, I'm always trying to figure out what is the best toy purchase for my children. So many toys they want are simply flash in the pans, so to speak. They play with them for two minutes and then they find their way into the dark recesses under the beds or in the cracks of the couch. Thomas the Train was a good investment, as were Hotwheels. Endless hours were spent putting together train tracks as well as simply moving trains and cars over any surface both inside and out of the house. These are great creative toys. But I really think the overall, most brilliant, most creative toy of all time is LEGOS.

Some moms out there fear the LEGOS. I've heard it all before, "We can't have LEGOS the baby will eat them!" "We can't have LEGOS because they are too messy!" "We can't have LEGOS the dog will eat them!" "We can't have LEGOS because someone will step on them resulting in injury that may require emergency medical attention!"

May I be as bold as to say, "Your children are really missing out!" These are the only toys I find that can capture my boy's attention for ENORMOUSLY large amounts of time. They can even bridge the age gap. Case in point. We have a friends who have three children, one in fifth grade, one in seventh, and one in high school. We frequently socialize together at their house. They still have a large plastic bin of LEGOS and every time....every time...we are there, all five kids have their hands in the bin building things...from age 5 to 15.
If you don't have LEGOS in your house, I encourage you to go immediately to the store and make a purchase. You will not be sorry. Yes, the baby could in fact ingest some, so be sure to keep them on the table or use only during the baby's naptime. Yes, they can be messy. Don't even try to organize LEGOS. One of the greatest joys is to simply "dig" in and create. (I do however, try to keep a baggie for the minifigures). Yes, you may step on some and have a few choice words...but you will not have to seek professional medical attention...its never that bad.
Please consider making LEGOS your friend. Especially, if you have boys. You will experience endless hours of quiet play (excluding normal boy noises) and they really are an educational toy incognito. The creativity that you will see in your child's building will amaze you, not to mention all the spatial stuff they're doing and small motor skills, blah, blah, blah!
You never might just "heart" LEGOS too!

Friday, May 14, 2010

the brother

So, my recent posts have all been about big brother. But what has little brother been up to? Well, his usual antics.
He is also one crazy, funny kid. Always has a quick response that usually spreads a smile across my face and a giggle in my heart. I do have to be careful about when I laugh. He can be a sensative creature.
Here is a pic of him dressed up to attend his brother's talent show. He insisted that he "dress up" and look nice for the performance. It may have been a response to the importance of big brother's dress or "costume" for the evening and its relevance for the presentation.
This sweater vest he has on, he always asks to put it on to play outside. Each time I have to explain to him that it really wouldn't make the best play clothes. What's the big deal? you might ask, Aren't you being a little uptight about a sweatervest? Reality is, he'll wear it outside and more than likely have it, his underwear and his cowboy boots on....and then he'll find the hose (or a puddle; or a pile of dirt; or a dirty hole) and the vest will quickly be removed and I'll find it stretched over his bicycle seat or hanging from a tree being used as a catapult. These things really don't work for me when trying to keep a few nice pieces of "dress" clothes just that...nice.

He did look adorable...even when he sweat profusely because it was at least 90 degrees that night...sweaty...but adorable!
P.S. the tie really made the whole outfit!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

my funny guy

He did it! J did his first stand up routine. He had a little "deer in the headlights" moment when he got out front to the microphone, but once again, he regained his composure and delivered his funnies. He got quite a laugh when he put on his glasses.
The evening was fun. My heart was so full of pride and love for my boy. Of course in my biased opinion I thought J's act was refreshingly different. (There was a lot of singing and cheer/dancing...Taylor Swift and whoever that 16 year old boy with the big bangs and even bigger teeth is).
A girlfriend of mine was backstage waiting with her daughter. She said when J came backstage after performing he flopped down on his back on the floor and let out a HUGE sigh! I would have loved to have seen that!
I'm secretly hoping that the apple has not fallen far from the tree. Baby did it...and I'm so proud of you! You really can do anything you put your mind to. I love you!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Samsula's Got Talent

The list came back and....drumroll please...

J made it!

My little (big) redneck comedian made the cut...

He'll be telling jokes and getting laughs one week from today! Way to go baby!

Friday, April 23, 2010

the audition

I am one proud mama! My oldest had his first audition.

Several weeks ago the notice came home. "Talent Show Auditions" To my surprise J immediately expressed an interest. We discussed some options for his talent; he: "I could play the guitar" me: "you really don't know how to play the guitar" he: "I could dance to the Go Fish cd" me: "well, if you dance you need to have a specific 'routine' that goes with the music" (i.e. throwing yourself all over the livingroom to the beat of the music does not always interpret into large audience entertainment. Yes, your mother thinks it's wonderful, but it pretty much stops there!)
Finally we decided he might try his hand at delivering some jokes. It took some time to convince him that he needed to do some research and try jokes that had been prewritten as opposed to coming up with them on the fly. Last night we chose what to wear ( he wanted black shirt, pants and cape. I tried to lean him toward something with color. End result: red shirt, dark pants, camo jacket, cowboy hat and fake coke bottle glasses; you know this boy loves to 'dress the part'), we rehearsed the entrance and delivery of jokes and I handed down a few select pointers. This morning I heard his voice loud and chipper, "Mom! I'm excited!" Me, "About what?" "About my audition!"
When the time finally came he was calm as a cucumber. He surprised me with his confidence and the ability to face his nervousness and gain composure. He never waivered. He stood with confidence and delivered his three jokes. We won't know until Monday whether or not he made the cut. What an experience to watch him bloom and grow. He has no fear. He believes completely in himself and his abilities. It is overwhelmingly...beautiful to behold.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

school is for learning

On our way to school this morning I heard B saying from the back seat, "Hey, look what I can do! Look what I can do!" A peek in the rear view mirror showed him licking his armpit!

"J, look what I can do!" he repeated emphatically, until his brother broke his attention away from the DS he was pictochatting on..."look! I can lick my armpit!"

"So, B, where did you learn to do that?" I inquired. "Oh, G, (kid in his class) showed me how" he replied.

"Really? (no surprise on my part!) And what does your armpit taste like?"


'nough said...peace out!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

something new

I finally succumbed to the guilt that I had an "ugly" or rather "boring" looking blog. (Not that the pictures of my adorable children aren't enough to make everything exciting and new...) Rather, as I look around "blogland" everyone seems to have snappy backgrounds and clever links. I never seem to have time to "groom" my blog so I tried to do something about it this evening.

So what do you think? I have a hard time gaging the "readability" as I sit here at 10:00 p.m. in my pj's after taking my contacts out and am trying to read it with my coke-bottle glasses sliding down my nose! My eyes are blurry and dry and ebbing in and out of focus. Is the text too hard to read? I would not want to suffer anyone to find discomfort in reading my blog for the sake of do tell...should it stay or go?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


The other night I had a moment. My youngest finally came down with the stomach bug I invited into our home over two weeks ago. (It has graciously gone from me, to my oldest, then my youngest and I'm begging God that it will leave before spending time with my husband...)

Anyway, it was early in the morning (1:00 am...ish..type of early). Little one had crawled into bed with us. I was hanging onto the 5 inches at the edge of the bed which is my sleeping space whenever children join us. So there I was, right arm lodged under the pillow my sweet baby slept on (this keeps me anchored to the bed so even though my hiney is hanging over the edge I'm still "attached" to the surface of the bed) The dog was anchoring my feet under the covers at the foot of the bed. B was snuggled up in the crook of my body and before you know it...the cat jumps on the bed and curls up on the rolling hill of my hip.

I laid there in the darkness feeling the "points" that were "anchoring" me. I kept thinking about what my body represented at that very moment. Was I furniture? or simply an extension of the furniture? I was frustrated and grouchy from lack of sleep...or the thought of lack of sleep. I mean I brought forth life from this soft, squishy, mobius, flesh covered frame? Am I nothing more than and object? I have rights!

I felt the warmth generated from the body of the youngest life form and heard his gentle breathing. He was calm and peaceful in his sleep. Her hairy highness warmed my feet, even though she was snoring, and the purring of the high priestess of hairballs was in fact soothing on my hip.

This body of mine, in all of its imperfections, for this brief moment offered the anchor of comfort...and it was good.

Monday, March 15, 2010

for sale

The contents of our home have been purged (thank you mom and dad for all of your help), the exterior shined up a bit and the sign is hanging by the mailbox at the driveway entrance. It's official! We're beginning the journey to Colorado.

Today I was faced with an unexplainable emotional outburst that I struggled to explain to my boys. Prior to picking them up from school I got the call that someone wanted to see the house within the hour. I frantically rushed around picking lint out of the corners of the rooms and threw things into hiding in the washer, dryer and oven. After picking the boys up from school, I instructed them of their every move for the next 30 minutes when we reached home. They executed their moves beautifully and we (I) sat and waited the final 10 minutes in fitful anticipation of the "lookers" arrival.

The car pulled in and we immediately headed to our stations in the car. Myself dragging annoying barking dog on her leash to her coveted spot in the front passenger seat. Our eyes met...they seemed the perfect candidates...young, pregnant, country (this is a politically correct description of someone wearing camouflage as regular dress). I climbed into the car and started down the driveway chanting, "They'd be perfect!" "They'd be perfect!" ... when suddenly I burst into tears!

Both boys immediately wanted to know why I was crying? Why was I crying? It felt an enormous jumble of emotions...anxiety, happiness, fear, PMS...lots of PMS today...and anticipation. I tried to calm their worries. I tried to explain. Finally, I asked, "Have you ever felt like you have many different emotions happening all at once?"

To which J replied, "No, it's a girl thing." Guess I have my work cut out.

My own take on things. This is and will be a bittersweet process. One girlfriend mentioned that it tends to be hard to leave the home where your children were born. We did put some sweat and tears into this place. Today, I guess I realized that occasionally you have to take a few steps back in order to move forward. Here's to that dance!

Monday, February 15, 2010

bad guys and fancy houses

As usual the boys and I were having a deep philosophical conversation in the car today. (Try as I may to sit on the couch, cuddle in bed or discuss these things around the dinner table...they never bite! For some reason riding in the car stirs up the great recesses of their minds...) Anyhow....J started asking about life cycles and would the world be around as we know it in the future. I began the delicate conversation about heaven and hell.

Suddenly, B asked if daddy had any real guns. "Why?", I asked. "For the bad guys", replied B, "So he could get any that might come to our house". "Oh no," quipped J, "bad guys only go to fancy houses, they won't come to our house, there's no stuff for them to get there..."

Well, I know I'll sure be sleeping better tonight...knowing the bad guys are passing me by for the 'fancy houses'.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

dear bitter retired person,

I'm sorry that life has left you sad and bitter. Especially toward children. Initially, I was highly irritated at your disguisted looks toward my children pushing the cart at the grocery store. My dander was raised when you rolled your eyes toward my darlings as they stood paralyzed at the wonders of an entire aisle of fruity, sugar filled cereal...eager to put at least a half dozen boxes in our cart. I never allow them to run amok. They never run through the store screaming. As much as they would like, they are not allowed to practice their latest and greatest wrestling moves in the middle of produce; because you see...they are learning!

The truth is I am desperately trying to educate them in respectful, proper behavior at heavily traffiked shopping establishments. I could keep them away, always shopping alone, until they were at a most respectful age of say...21. However, what would they learn? How will they learn to negotiate ankle biting grocery carts, canes, and the ubiquitous motorized cart? How will I be able to train them to always keep their eyes open, analyzing how to negotiate the guantlet of each and every aisle? How will I be able to train them to be respectful of all human beings unless I am out and about amongst the masses?

I don't pretend to know the hardships that life has tossed you; and I know there can and have been many difficulties. But please, can you for one brief moment, reflect back to those times when your children were young? or perhaps even to your own youth? The excitement, enthusiasm...the energy. The world is such an incredible place for a child. There is so much to see, to experience. Can you catch a glimpse of the innocence in their faces? Catch the whimsy in the lilt of their laughter? Listen. Embrace it. Don't bar yourself against it. They are not here to create discord in your life. Instead, they are here to show us all the simple joy of life.

Life is short. You know that all too well. Please don't leave this earth having wasted energy being bitter toward a young mother and her children. They could be such a gift in what might be such a bleak and difficult day. Stop. Be patient. Admire the life...enjoy.

P.S. If you still find children annoying might I suggest you do your shopping at 10:00 am....most children are at school and therefore not available to make your life miserable!