Tuesday, February 28, 2012

These are the days of winter I hate.

The gray skies, the blustery cold winds. The feelings of wanting to hibernate under warm layers of fleece, yet feeling cooped up and locked in all at once.

I can't get warm and stay warm so I wear my winter hat inside, and layer upon layer of clothes until I can layer no more.

So many things I should be doing, yet I find myself taking pictures of the kids playing their new game of 'body bowling' with rolls of paper towels; listening to them squeal in delight as the rolls go flying, and I can't help but laugh until my belly hurts because that's the laughter that feels the best.

And so it goes, I set up the 'pins' and they use their bodies to knock them down, over and over and over again.

I don't glance at the kitchen table, still covered with the stuff of lunch, or the sink of dishes that haven't been touched.

I don't jump up when the dryer stops to get the neverending loads going again. I even ignore the crumbs on the floor, and this one may be the hardest yet. My eagle eyes always land on the crumbs on the floor, and they always have to be swept up right away. But I'm worried that if I move, these feelings will be swept away and I can't get them back, because who can duplicate a game like this; the laughter like this; the squeals of delight like this?

So I keep snapping; keep capturing; keep setting up what is being knocked down, and suddenly I catch a glimpse; just a tiny glimpse of a clearing in the sky; a patch of blue underneath all of that gray, and I know the gray; the cold; the bitterly cold can't last forever.

Today is just a day, one day closer to the end of the gray and closer to the blue skies; the budding, blooming colors of warmer days and brighter days and longer days and I can do this another day.

Monday, February 27, 2012

I'm Still Here...

Although you wouldn't know it by how neglected my little blog is.

Three of the four kids have had the flu this week; so here are some pictures to look at so I don't have to bore you with puke stories.

 I can't wait until this park is covered with flowers instead of snow.

And there are leaves on the trees.

And it doesn't take us ten minutes to bundle up to go and pick up the older kids from school.

And what do you do when the kids are all too sick to go to school, but well enough to eat? That's right, you make some cookies...
But, think twice about trying a new recipe on just a few half-hours of sleep. Either the recipe sucks (which I doubt), or I screwed up the recipe (highly likely). Jacob must have told me 50,000 times that he's never had cookies that were so hard before! And on the 49,999th time, I told him, OK! I'll never make this recipe again! I'm going to blame the recipe.

I'm not sure what that perfectly delicious M&M is doing on a peanut butter sandwich that only has one bite out of it, and the one bite wasn't the bite with the perfectly delicious M&M on it...it's a crime is what it is.

So here's to hoping the fourth kid doesn't get sick.

Thanks for listening to me ramble!!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

On Being High Maintenance...

No, not me.  I do not consider myself "high maintenance", although I do have a few OCD tendencies, but that's not high maintenance, right?

I'm talking about this child of mine.

With her big hair and her little body and her huge personality and her very loud voice. She reminds me of a cartoon character; which one? I don't know. I do know that she is the head boss in charge, yelling at all of her slaves; her slaves including her brothers and sister and her parents.

I wonder if she thinks in that very smart and too-big-for-her-body-head of hers that we are her puppets and she is holding the strings; scream loudly enough and we will do anything she wishes. Her demands met at the drop of her pink tassled hat.

Is it because she's the baby? Is it because I ate too much ice cream late at night when I was pregnant with her? Does one have to do with the other? Probably not.

I have overheard the other kids when she's not getting what she wants when she wants it, meaning right now!.
Just give it to her so she won't be so loud. and Just move so she'll stop screaming. And I think to myself why is she so much more important than them that they won't just say no to her? Maybe they just want the noise to stop.

At the ripe old age of not-quite-two, she has been in the naughty corner more times than I can count. She is a tiny destroyer of all things good and even better. She broke my glasses and then my heart after she served her time and said sorry in her little girl voice and bearhugged my head. Now when I put on my taped-up glasses, I think of those puppy dog eyes and my heart melts a little as I think to myself, man are we in trouble.

And by we, I mean all of us, the world wrapped around her tiny, sticky finger.

I see killer tantrums in my future.

She can't get away with being the puppetmaster forever...

even if she is a really cute one.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sanitation Nation

1. It's sanitizing craziness around here.

2. Ever since my oldest woke me up at midnight last night, saying, I think I might need to puke.

3. Nothing gets you out of bed faster than the word puke.

4. And so it started. Every half hour for 4 straight hours. The poor kid.

5. And in between the puking, I started wiping light switches, door handles, refrigerator handles, computer keyboards, my phone, and more light switches. Thank goodness for disinfecting wipes.

6. I'm pretty sure I can be classified as a crazy person...or maybe it's the smell of bleach that's getting to me and altering my senses, but who goes around in the middle of the night cleaning hard surfaces in the hopes no one else gets sick?

7. And then I remember the others are doomed.

8. This one shared Jake's sucker yesterday...

9. And this one drank Jake's pop by mistake...

10. There might be hope for this one though.

11. I can think of a million other things that I'd rather be doing than working in my sanitation nation right now.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

1. Duplicated

2. Trending (on twitter-10:00 Friday morning)

3. Love

4. Paper

5. Plastic

Thursday, February 16, 2012

A Letter...

To my children, 
My sparkly little girl with a bright, shiny smile. Not all girls receive jewelry on Valentine's Day. Please don't act as if your heart has broken in two because you didn't get something shiny on this special day. I have been with your father for 15 years, and never once have I received a piece of bling on the Day of Love. Maybe you've been watching too much T.V.? The group gift of the M&M dispenser will have to do. 

Thank goodness you're cute, because the screaming-tantrum-fit-throwing is getting a little annoying lately. Let's work on that before you fly the nest and leave me for kindergarten...mmmkay?

All I can say is, the cupcake won...

When did you stop calling me mama, and now feel the need to address me in this manner? S'up, lady?

My kids can be the sweetest, sometimes, you know?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Box

Ragged, jagged, uneven edges.

Packing tape, glue, nothing fancy.

Isn't happiness and joy and the having fun more important than the unattainable perfect straight lines and hearts placed just so?

It's having your sister help, because you don't like the smell of glue.

It's having me watch instead of doing it for him, because my way is not always better.

It's the two of them corroborating ideas; how about a hippo?
A hippo would be cool.  
Needless to say, the hippo never made it on the box.

Should I be teaching them to strive for greatness and perfection in everything they do? Telling them they can do better, and be better, and try harder; and in doing this, they would be miserable in the process of trying to live up to impossible expectations, because really, there is no such thing as perfect.

When he walks into his classroom, with his made-all-by-himself box, I hope he won't see a roomful of boxes made by moms wanting to be better than good enough. Hopefully, he'll see boxes with jagged edges, and glue spots, and uneven edges.

Perfectly imperfect.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Love Actually...

1. is one of my favorite movies.

2. Valentine's Day is one of my favorite holidays. Some people may think it's just a Hallmark card, commercialized, sappy, mushy day only for lovers. But, I feel it's a day to celebrate love...
for everyone.

3. Even though I'm a hopeless romantic, who cries at sappy movies, and sometimes Hallmark commercials, I'm also a realist; I know it's not always heroes rescuing damsels in distress...

but don't we all need a little rescuing sometimes?

4. Wouldn't it be nice if someone came galloping in and swept you off your feet, and you lived out your happily ever after?

5. Wouldn't it be nice if the world ran on love instead of intolerance?

Is that what the X's and O's stand for? Hugs and kisses?

What if every day was dedicated to love and hugs and kisses?

In honor of Valentine's Day, go hug or kiss someone...

or smile at someone, or hold a door open for someone...

Because if you look hard enough...