Friday, March 19, 2010

You take the good, you take the bad.

We spent a lovely morning enjoying the spring weather at Linvilla Orchards. Our friends Peter and Lucy invited us to meet them at the playground, followed by a picnic lunch of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, grapes, and yogurt bites. They climbed and slid and flung themselves down firemen poles with reckless abandon. We fed goats, ducks, roosters, and buff laced Polish chickens. We chased each other with found feathers and dug in the dirt with sticks. The day ended when M caught Peter's hand in the corn feed machine. As Peter's mom consoled him, A caught M's hand in the same corn feed machine. Karma coming back to peck him, or innocent toddler-foolery? We'll never know I guess. I saw glimpses of humanity in them all after calm was restored. A said "I'd like to apologize to M." And then she did. And then M mumbled "Sorry Peter," with his head hung low. And then Peter graciously accepted the apology and offered a hug. It was gladly returned.

We got home, used the potties, washed up and the Salad went into their room for "quiet time." Basically, naps are a thing of the past and the only way to keep my sanity is to corral them in their room and beg them read quietly in their beds. Usually they build forts, play hopscotch, look out the window at the birdies, pretend to be "twin babies" while A cares for them, wrap S in blankets and jump on top of her, ride on the sides of their cribs like horses. You know the deal. Today though, I heard this conversation.

A: "S, can I borrow your Sleeping Bleauty book?" (not a mistype - A does say Sleeping BLUE-T.)
S: "Uh, sure you can, A."
A: "Thanks! You am a great sharer."
The good days are really good.

Of course, the bad days really bad.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I HATE to admit it . . .

but I made my first mistake. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Whew. That was a funny one. Cause we all know for dang sure I've made plenty of mistakes parenting my Salad over the last 3 years. Not huge glaring ones, like neglect or abuse. My mistakes are more subtle, speaking in a harsh tone and expecting them not to repeat that same tone. Shouting "No!" 1000 times a day and expecting them to answer all my questions with "Yes!" This one, though, surprised me. Because I made it so innocently, but my little sponges picked it right up and I am hard at work in removing the word HATE from the mouths of babes. Yep. You heard me. HATE. I heard it from A last week on our way to a playdate at the Little Treehouse. I was listening to "Sugar High" from the 90s classic movie Empire Records. What? It's not a classic? Ah huh. Well, you digress . . .

Anyway, I'm singing and dancing and suddenly A puts her hands over her ears and says, "Mommy, I hate this song." I caught my breath and turned the music down. I asked her where she had heard that word. Surely it was on an episode of Dora. Or those heathens who were hitting each other during story time on Tuesday had spouted it out. My inquiries were met with only silence. So I started listening to myself converse with other adults in front of the Salad and here is a list of things I have "hated" in the last 6 days.

1. Black jelly beans.
2. Wet socks.
3. Cutting lettuce.
4. Gilbert Godfrey's voice.
5. 5 rainy days in a row.
6. Monday night TV.
7. Dealing with Insurance companies.

There you have it. And I would venture a guess that most of you hate at least one of those things as well. But I implore you, learn from my lousy mistake. Don't let your kids know.

PS - It's been one year since I wrote my first post on this little blog o' mine!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once.

My Fruit Salad is growing like weeds.

M has refused to wear pull ups at night for a month now. And wonder of wonders, the kid has woken up dry EVERY night. Great job, Little Buddy!

S learned how to blow her nose a couple of weeks ago. I mean, really blow boogies out, not just make raspberry sounds with her lips while I wipe. I'm proud of you, Little Bit!

And A. My Little Mama, what empathy she showed me in the car the other day.
Me: "Hey guys, see the ambulance? It has its sirens on. Do you know where it's going?"
S: "To the doctor."
Me: "Yep. That's right, S. The ambulance is taking someone to the doctor."
M: "But why, Mommy?"
Me: "Somebody must be sick or they have a bad boo-boo."
A: "Ohhh. Poor Somebody."

Yet, I still see mistakes they make. And I let them make them, over and over and over. Because they are so damn cute and I love them. So what if M calls cobwebs spider cobs for the rest of his life? I know when he says he wants to put on his "suitcase" to play in the snow he means his snowsuit. And that he needs snow "gobbles" instead of goggles. Is it so terrible that A thinks the term is "nail toes" instead of toe nails? Just the other night, as she dangled her legs between hers and M's cribs, she shouted for me to watch her "tangling!" Or that she wears a "pack pack" instead of a back pack? It's not so far off that every time S sees a balloon she screams, "Mommy, a baboon!"? I feel like if I correct these little mistakes, I won't see any evidence that they were once my teeny tiny Salad. And so for now, I won't correct her when S says, "Mommy, me love you." Instead, she'll get a whole hearted, "Me love you too, S."

M in his "suitcase!"

Thursday, March 11, 2010

How does YOUR garden grow?

It's been one of those weeks when my proverbial garden is not being tended. I am feeling guilty, tired, impatient, faithless, anxious, inadequate. I thought of a poem that my parents had posted on their refrigerator years ago. I don't know who put it there or why. I know it impacted me though, because I was able to google it by typing in the fifth line. 20 years later, I remembered that "when care is pressing you down a bit - rest if you must." Whoever is reading, I offer you this garden tending.

Don't Quit
by Edgar A. Guest

"When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
when the road you're trudging seems all uphill,
when the funds are low and the debts are high,
and you want to smile but you have to sigh,
when care is pressing you down a bit - rest if you must,
but don't you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns.
As everyone of us sometimes learns.
And many a fellow turns about when he might have won had he stuck it out.
Don't give up though the pace seems slow - you may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than it seems to a faint and faltering man;
often the struggler has given up when he might have captured the victor's cup;
and he learned too late when the night came down,
how close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out - the silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
and when you never can tell how close you are,
it may be near when it seems afar;
so stick to the fight when you're hardest hit - it's when things seem worst,
you must not quit."

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Ides of M, February 15th

Since the Salad has to share their birthday, R and I have celebrated the day each came home from the hospital as their own Special Day. The 9th is A's. The 14th is S's. Today was M's. We asked what he wanted to do and he said go to Paneras for breakfast and then to the Lawn Mower store (aka Home Depot). The girls, R and I were happy to oblige. We played with our Aqua Doodles for a while when we got home, then the girls and I took a short walk up the block while M and R did "boy stuff." After a cheese stick, chicken salad and banana lunch (all at M's request), Poppy and Ian showed up to visit M on his special day. At 1:30 we headed up for nap. I took advantage of the quiet and cleaned out 3 shelves in my kitchen. I was super excited to find 6 year oatmeal and red dye 40 laden KoolAid. Not because I'll ever let those things into my children's mouths, but because there is another snow storm a-coming and I can use them for some crafty type things.
On an unrelated note, A shoplifted for the first time today. Unintentionally, I think. I hope. Anyway, the loot was a stuffed Valentine's bear from Starbucks. The two of us ran back and told the Starbuckians what had happened. Laughter ensued. All is well in our world today.