Monday, March 30, 2009

Boys will be boys!

Today the kids let me sleep a freakish amount! Not ONLY did they let me sleep in this morning, even shutting my bedroom door as they crept out to play in the hallway, but I took a TWO hour nap from 12 to 2 on the couch, which means they didn't make me get up to give them snacks, drinks, toys, wipe bottoms, etc. Awesome. As I lay in bed this morning, Jack had come into my room complaining that his throat hurt. When he came back later, he said "Mom, my throat feels better. It's broken!" I was totally confused. "It feels better? What do you mean it's broken?" I asked. "The spell is broken!" was his enthusiastic response. Apparently there was a magical force causing his sore throat. Nasty witches!
When I came down the hallway where they had been playing, the scene was too funny. All of their jungle animals were arranged in particular manners. The giraffes were all eating from play trees, the elephants were grouped together, and the tigers and lions were in a circle, all eating from a GIANT clownfish. Apparently they were craving seafood!
Finally, the other night as we were reading stories, Jack was sounding out the words, and Sam was choosing to just listen. Until he said "Jack, that's a comma. You're supposed to pause there." Ryan and I looked at each other, smiling, and Ryan said "That's right, Sam. And what is that called?" Without missing a beat, he said "Punctuation. And at the end, that's the pyramid." Really it's a period, but hey, I'll take it!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Jack is now officially a grown-up

Today on our way home from the grocery store, out of nowhere, Jack said "Mom, what does beer taste like?" I was all "HUH?, Whaddya mean? It's for grown ups."
He said "I know, but what does it TASTE like." I was kinda stumped and the best I could do was, "Well, it's hard to describe but it's kind of tickly and spicy like soda, but sour instead of sweet. Mommy doesn't really even like it much, but Daddy does. Maybe one day Daddy will let you taste it just so you can see what it tastes like." And Jack said, "And then if I like it, I can have it ALL THE TIME!"
"Well, no you can't have it unless you're 21."
"Or if I'm 22, right Mom?"
"Right. You have to be AT LEAST 21."
We went to the library this afternoon and Jack found a Lightning McQueen wallet attached to his bookbag in the car. On our way home, he said "Mom, can I put money in my wallet?"
I said, "Well, do you HAVE any money?" He responded "No, so can you give me some money to put in my wallet so I can buy toys and stuff?"
I told him he would need to do some work if he wanted money, just like Mommy and Daddy do. He was quiet for a second, then whined and said "Can't you just give me like 3 or 6 dollars? I don't know HOW to have a job." And after I chuckled, thinking to myself that the asking for money has already begun, I said, "Then you're going to need to learn because someday you will need to have a job and pay for things by yourself like Mommy and Daddy do."
When we got home, I threw the lasagna I made earlier in the oven and called the kids to settle in on the couch with me so we could start reading through the stack of books we selected. Jack said "Sorry, but I can't right now. Mom, I need to use the computer so I can do some work." Fiddling with the mouse, he said "MOOOOM, this isn't working and I can't do my JOOOOOB."
Ryan had a beer with dinner, and Jack said, "Daddy, Mommy said I could have some of your beer." Ryan looked at me with a raised eyebrow, ever skeptical since I am the definite prude in the household, and I recounted the conversation we had in the car. So Ryan HANDED HIM THE BOTTLE, to which I said, "Well, let's just put a sip in a cup and you can taste it."
Jack took a swig, nervously smiling and said "Mmmm, I like it!" Then throwing an arm into the air and having it land in a finger pointed at me, he said "I TOOOOLD you I would!"
Sam took his sip and said "MMMM" as it was touching his lips, but the cringe on his face said otherwise. Neither finished their sip.

At the ripe age of four, Jack has a job and an evening drink. 4 going on 40 maybe!

Friday, March 13, 2009

The complexities of motherhood

Last night, I heard Sam coughing from his bedroom. I crept into the room to watch him sleep, to make sure he was safe, secure, and asleep. Jack was laying horizontally on his bed, so I gently righted him, laying his head on the pillow and smoothing the blankets back over him, snug and warm. He didn't even open his eyes, but curled back up on his side murmuring "Thanks, Mom" in his sleep. I checked the thermometer in their room to make sure it was a perfect 74 degrees, and then sat on the edge of the bed staring at these little people that encompass so much of my world now. I thought to myself "How is it possible to love someone SO much? Has any child on earth ever been loved this much?" And as always, I began to think of the children who were not asleep on soft beds, who had not eaten dinner, taken a warm bath, put on clean pjs, read stories or received a kiss from their adoring parents. I think often of those children as I stare at my own, wishing I had enough time, enough energy, enough resources to give those children the life they deserve. And then I began to wonder if other mothers feel that way. Is it motherhood that makes my heart ache for those other children; being a woman perhaps, or maybe even just being a human.
A vision flashed back to the morning preschool rush; pushing the kids out the door, racing down the road, running into the building, flying back for pickup. As I sat in the pickup line waiting for Jackson, I saw three older women leaving the church, slowly and laboriously walking, limping, towards their cars. The sounds of their voices was mingling with the sounds inside my minvan, those of Sam and Olivia talking and babbling, the Leapfrog DVD playing AGAIN. I thought about how nice it was to have the leisure of standing in the parking lot, taking their time going places, chatting for a few moments, obviously no need to hurry anywhere. The mixed emotions I felt were both not wanting to grow old, not wanting my kids to grow up, leave me, and lead their own lives, but also having a lifetime of memories to carry with me. I began picturing these women having their morning coffee on a sunfilled porch, napping in the afternoon, and spending the evening with their children and grandchildren over a comforting homecooked meal in the house that is filled with their memories. Suddenly, being old didn't seem so bad through my rose colored glasses.
Sam woke again, interrupting my thoughts and making it clear I would need to sleep in their room after all. I snuggled in next to Jack, Sam placing his hand inside mine, his new favorite way to fall asleep. Not JUST holding hands, but hands intertwined. I kissed the chubby dimples on his knuckles, whispered an "I love you" and tried to close my eyes, but their smell was intoxicating and I once again feared the day when I will no longer sleep between them in a bed, feeling their soft skin, stroking their smooth cheeks, and running my hands through their tousled hair as they drift. I will no longer hum "You Are My Sunshine" over and over or answer random questions like "Mom, when I lose a tooth will I still be able to eat crunching things sometimes?" in the glow of their nightlight. Soon Jackson won't lay in bed sounding out words, and trying to spell them... "P-p-p-pig. Starts with P! P-I-i-i-i. Then I! P-i-g-g-g-g. Then G! PIG!" Soon I won't be a goddess, a magician able to produce lost toys, make favorites foods out of nowhere, and make boo-boos disappear with a simple kiss.
I love being a woman and I love the gift of motherhood. I hope it lasts.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Shush, mama

Whenever I sing now, Olivia waits a second, gets a serious look on her face, cocks her head to the side, points her finger at me, squints her eyes and says, "Shush, mama." When I laugh, she throws her head back and laughs maniacally. Today she would tell me she wanted to hear the ABC's and then when I would sing, she'd say, "Shoosh, Mama." I would feign hurt feelings, and she would say "Ohhhh, HUG?" reaching out to comfort me with a hug before the whole scene would begin again.
Whenever anyone gets hurt she says "Wha happened?" in the sweetest, most concerned voice, almost always holding her head to the side and gently rubbing her hand on the person's arm or back. SO.CUTE.

My boyfriend

Jack has been really into drawing lately. Letters, people, trains, houses, you name it, he wants to draw it! The other day he came running to me with his latest creation and said "Mom, I drew a picture of your boyfriend. What's his name?" I chuckled, only half listening and said "Well, I don't know." He quickly responded "Oh, right, cause you have a boyfriend but you don't know his name, right?" All I could do was laugh and HOPE TO GOD that he hasn't told his teachers that! It only got better when he showed me the picture...a stick figure laying on a BED! He added "So, there's your boyfriend laying on the bed. But you don't know his name, right Mom?" I decided I better set the record straight before it went any further and said, "Well, actually Daddy is my boyfriend." He answered, "Oh, okay. Well I'll show Daddy this picture when he gets home then since it's him and he'll like it!"
He liked it alright...and thought perhaps he should have a heart to heart with Jack about what goes on when he's at work! Heehee! Good thing he knows I don't have TIME for an affair because the story and picture Jack cooked up looked pretty incriminating! Gotta love their imaginations!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Snow 2009!

NYC wedding...Swanky!

We had a great time in NYC, and thankfully there was NOT an anvil rainshower. We did return to a snowshower, but more on that in the next post! The wedding in NYC was AMAZING; Fabulous location, food that was unbelievably good and delivered in copious amounts, perfect couple, and good friends. Can you really ask for anything more than that? Here are a few of the bajillion pics I took that night...
Katie was one of my best friends in college. We met our freshman year when we lived next door to each other in the dorm. We became sorority sisters right after that, lived together in NYC for a summer (there are some tales to tell from that!) and the rest is history. She married a great guy, and I'm so very happy I was able to go and be a part of their special day. I did a reading of a poem by Nikki Giovanni called "Love is", who in addition to being a famous poet, was one of my favorite professors in college. Katie was absolutely stunning and radiant.

Circus (and not the one at my house!)

We went to the Ringling Bros. Circus a few weeks ago, and here are the pics to prove it! Being the cheapskate that I am, I brought our own dollar store light wands, lollipops, bags of goldfish and cookies, and juice boxes to try and ward off the gimmies. Unfortunately those darn circus toys and treats get more fun every year and it was SO hard to say no. Jackson was fine with it. Sam, who we later found out was battling a case of the flu, was a little less grateful. We went out for pizza afterwards, and made some great memories.