September 30, 2009

turkey legs and tofu.

i know. it's late and i need to take a few minutes to read, write in my journal, and spend some time with my husband. BUT, i just had to write this post... about turkey legs. SERIOUSLY. Have you ever eaten one? i'm a carnivore. i like meat. medium-rare. i like veggies too... a lot. i think i could be a good vegetarian. and, turkey legs might just put me over the edge. They are gruesome. Grisly and tough... you really have to gnarl into the flesh to eat them. The meat is dark... kinda reddish... and full of ligaments and stuff. as you eat, you really feel like a barbarian tearing the flesh off your prey. It was good... don't get me wrong... but, so... fleshy and barbaric. tofu... it's so peaceful. it just slides down. no ripping, no tendons, no images of scary attacking turkeys defending their young as scary men with axes try to chop off their neck. sorry. but seriously... eating that turkey leg has really had an impact on me.

a FAIR to remember...

i love lunch dates with dad.
and. funnel cake.

i'm gonna miss this...

love the lines...
love the eyes...
love the memories...
Today, Leah woke up early from her nap and decided to empty lily's dresser into lily's crib, while lily was napping. What a mess... and, what a FLOOD of memories. I've had toddlers at home before... I'm starting to remember the trouble they can get into during those quiet times when I think all is well. The second time around, it's just funny. I especially loved how easy it was to teach leah her mistake... i had her clean it up, without help. She just stuffed everything back into the drawer. Yes. it was still a mess. Nope. I wasn't even a little bit mad. Yes. she was traumatized... sobbing like I had beaten her. She was sure she needed help, which I only offered by way of encouragement and occasionally handing her a shirt... I'm pretty confidant that she won't try this again. Am I a bad mother when I take such pleasure in a child's agony? i know her pains were growing pains. FOR SURE, a calm consequence has much more teaching value than the sobbing, frustrated tantrums I used to throw when the kids made a mess. and they did make a mess!! oh, the memories.

September 27, 2009

sunday sayings...

Jakob, holding a big knife, while he was putting away dishes after school one day... "Mom, if a robber came, and I needed to defend you with a sword fight, I'd use THIS knife." Jakob got in trouble cause he went out to play before his dishwasher was empty. He said he thought the dishes were still dirty. I told him that if the dishwasher is locked when he goes to unload, it's clean. He said, in his best ever "hope I don't get in trouble" voice. "Ok Mom, Thanks for teaching me. Now I know a little more about how a dishwasher operates." And... this isn't THAT funny-- except to the Professor. See... there are very few things that we have a long standing disagreement on. The dishwasher is one of them. The Professor thinks that there is a BEST way to load a dishwasher... I don't really care... I just put the dishes in. He has tried on many occasions to TEACH me the best way to load a dishwasher and i successfully ignore him. So, he is constantly re-arranging my dishwasher. He really hates when I do the dishes, so he is quick to volunteer to do the job... and I'm just fine with that. But, he was out of town last week. The afternoon he got home, Jakob was unloading and said... "Mom, I really think something is wrong with this dishwasher. Did it break or something? I mean, for the past three days the dishes are still dirty when I go to put them away." The professor laughed out loud in the background. Drew, not too excited about his Saturday job to sort the videos and dvds... "I'm just not good at putting away videos. And, I don't want to practice cause I'm not planning on being a video guy when I grow up." We encourage our kids to fast two meals once a month, Drew wasn't too excited about that today. He announced at around 10am when he was ready to eat, "Today, I'm fasting for one meal. That's it. And, including night time, I've already fasted like eight hours. Don't you think eight hours is better than nothing mom?" Drew, in trouble for not taking out the trash when he was asked even though he was helping Leah when I caught up with him, "See, I ALWAYS get in trouble for trying to do the right thing. Everytime I'm trying to do a good deed, BAM, in trouble." Drew, after I asked him to lower his voice and be careful NOT to be sassy. "Mom. Can I ask you a question? Do you want to live in a world with no exclamation points? I am not trying to be sassy, I'm just using exclamations!" I explained that he can say the same thing with a different tone and it wouldn't be sassy. "See! Just like I thought! You just want a whole house of periods!!!" I really need to pay attention to Anna's funny things next week. She is funny, but mainly because she reports what everyone else says that's funny. She and I laugh so hard together at Leah's funny stuff, and Junie B. Jones. Oh, bedtime is a hoot when we read Junie B. Jones together and Anna replays every funny line. Plus, this week she was sick... poopy, pukey sick. So, I do have some good one-liners, but they're a little too smelly for the blog. Anna's quotes are whimsical... When she was pulling taffy she said, "Mom, imagine if we just kept pulling and pulling and it just kept getting bigger and bigger in our hands. Wouldn't that be wonderful?" I need to read her that book... is it Strega Nona or something like that? She came into our room this morning with one of our favorite classic nursery rhyme books in her hand... she says, do you notice what this is... then she proceeded to sing us the second verse of Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star in her best voice. "Did you even know that song HAD a second verse?" Sweet Anna. Ellie, making laffy taffy on Friday night, "Oh MOM! This is the BEST CANDY EVER MADE!!" Ellie, helping me paint beds on Saturday morning, "Wow Mom, you're really good at this. Maybe when you grow up your going to be the best-ever-bed-putter-together-er." Ellie, after school, handing me a few papers that she has pulled from her Tuesday folder, "Here mom, look at these. The rest are 100%'s." Ellie has cowboy boots, but they're "wrinkly" at the top-- kinda pushed down... I FINALLY figured out why she had to wear her boot cut, diamond jeans every day with her boots. "I HAVE to wear the jeans that go out at the bottom. No one can see the wrinkly part of my boots. If I have those jeans on they just think they go up straight to my knees." Ellie, looking at costumes and FINALLY finding one she wanted to be... "OK, I guess I'll be that tin woman." Oh, Ellie. (Actually, I think I can make her a cute tin woman... maybe not the exact tin woman that she has envisioned...) Oops... does this count as a big halloween reveal? Leah, at lunch- "I hate juice. I hate apple sauce. I hate all these stuff." Leah, on Sunday morning, "Mom, I like your cowboy boots. Who got them for you? Oh, you got them at the store, like Black Stallion? I really like black stallion!" During Church, Leah wants to see the baby in front of us who is smiling at her. I whisper that she can SEE him from her seat. She says, "No MOM. I want to PET him!" During the closing song at church, Leah catches the eye of the Bishop on the stand and waves at him. He smiles and winks at her. She turns to me and shouts, "See Mom, He's my friend!" She continued to wave through the whole song and everytime the Bishop smiled at her she told someone else... "SEE DREW, SEE ANNA, HE is my FRIEND!" When I pick her up after church, I always ask her if she was good in nursery. She always says with a big smile, "No, I not! I hit that kid. I not share my toys. I hit him." I'm not sure if she really thinks she's bad, if she really is bad, or if she just thinks it's funny to tell me she's bad. I've talked to her teachers and they say she is good. Isn't it funny that she will ALWAYS tell me what a stink she's been. Love these kids. Love these moments.

September 26, 2009

learning... cursive.

sweet ellie, great job on your cursive. next time, don't practice my initials on your homework. i love you, mom

September 25, 2009

a little project...

see, i finally did a little project... my bed skirt was too short and i hated that everyone could always see the wrapping paper under my bed. i had the fabric, added a little ruffle and TAH DAH! i'm getting THERE.

September 23, 2009

the ducks were calling...

the professor is out of town and... the ducks were calling.
it was a beautiful night.
so, after music lessons, we headed to a "lake" for a picnic leah shared her dinner with the ducks.
i sat on the blanket with lily and the kids explored. it was quiet, and beautiful, and lovely. then, ellie fell in. yes, she really did slip. but, it wasn't accidental that she was in the water in the first place no, she didn't ask if she could get wet. no, i wasn't mad cause it was really funny my sweet ellie always keeps life fun!!
even cold and wet she was so cute and smiley, we all kinda wanted to jump in with her.
well, maybe just get our feet wet. leah was not happy when she slipped in. i love this picture of leah's daring rescue. i love jakob, kissing leah's head. cute kids.
they had so much fun, just being outside why don't we do this more? cautious, careful, anna was not so happy when she slipped in by now i was waiting for the police to show up and arrest me "sorry officer, they ALL just slipped in."
nope. not the night i had planned. yes. i was a little "sound of music-those are my kids in the trees" embarrassed but. watching their joy brought me joy. overflowing joy. and i'm so grateful for the beautiful land that i live in for the family i love and for a God who is always with us. i'm so grateful for magical moments when the ducks call.

ode to disclosure...

as i sit down to post about my magical evening i think, only a handful of you know of the difficult week we've been through. [i don't know how to share my joy without sharing some of my heartache.] this morning i was back at the doctors (thank you to the sweet few who have saved me by loving my kiddos-jennifer, breanne, ashley, and ellie!!). i am pregnant. about 7 weeks. we are very excited about this pregnancy. but, it's not looking good. there is a 10% chance that everything will be miraculously ok. there is a 90% chance that the baby my body thinks i am carrying is not forming... growing, but not forming. the hard part is, they don't know for sure. for sure, i wouldn't end a pregnancy that may be fine. i'm grateful to be here in lubbock where they are very careful... i believe in a God of creation. i believe that He could heal and form and create within me this time like he has six times before. but, i also believe that we are here on earth to experience sickness and sorrow so that we appreciate health and joy. today, i am so grateful for the 6 amazing, beautiful, spunky, healthy children that i have been blessed with. today i am grateful for the joy that todd and i felt when we found out i was expecting again. this baby was todd's. he spent a week with the kids when i was out of town and when i came home he told me how much he loved watching them at the park, hearing them play in their room, feeding them, putting them to bed. He said, "Honey, let's have another baby." and so we did. and we will. it may be that our baby will have to wait for a healthier fetus... that's what we doing right now... just waiting. life is good. we are blessed. i am grateful for the journey. and, although the day was tough... my night was magical. thanks for sharing our life with us... and, if you think about it, mention us in your prayers.

September 17, 2009

real glasses.

ellie has "needed" glasses for a long time.
all the letters on the chart looked like "black dots"  
especially since her friend Paige got glasses and, her BFF Bandera went to the eye doctor.
i've been a bit wary of ellie's mysterious eye issues.  
but her blurry-eyed complaints have endured 2 regular doctor visits and had led us to a specialist.
she continued to insist that she couldn't read the eye chart.
when asked what letters she could read she would respond... 
"They ALL looks like black dots."

so, when the doctor stepped out for a moment, i smiled and told her that understood she REALLY did NEED glasses...
real glasses. 

and, that even if she could read the "black spots" on the eye chart, we would still get her glasses.
real glasses.
guess what happened?
the doctor came back into the room
and, the eye chart became 100% clearer.
it seems that with the proper "prescription" everything was a bit clearer.

and ellie is cute as can be in her new, REAL glasses.
i am grateful for claires. $8.
and, the doctor did say she is a tiny bit far-sighted, so we'll check back with him in six months.
i have a feeling that mom's prescription will improve her eyesight magically.

and. actually... as i type, these letters look a little blurry... i think i need a pair of purple-diamond real. glasses too...

ps.  yup, i even talked to her teacher at school and told her ellie's glasses were REAL.  she needed them.  
every day.
until middle school, when she will probably need a retainer.
we all need retainers in middle school.
it's a 1st grade thing. 

September 16, 2009

almost "there"...

I'm grateful that life isn't a race. I'm grateful that even when I'm "not there yet" I'm still becoming and it's not about arriving, it's about becoming but. sometimes i feel crazy cause i'm almost THERE and then WHACK. this week i ended up in the ER i'm fine but FRUSTRATED cause I'm supposed to take it easy... and. I was so close to THERE i could taste it. see this guy... that was me ALMOST home
then, stop the race. but. i am remembering. really, there is no finish line. it's an illusion. really, i'm on a treadmill. i set the pace, i set the incline, i set the finish time. and sometimes. my "personal trainer" decides that I'm done. and sometimes. He decides that i can run faster.
i'm grateful for this journey. i'm happy to become. really, i'm glad it's not a race. but sometimes, i wish i was "there". ya know?

September 15, 2009

the age of reading...

i think it just clicks... at certain ages. Anna- when she came out of the womb. Leah- probably the same. Ellie- age 4/5. I'm not sure Drew is there yet... well, maybe. Jakob-- this year. age 10. 5th grade. He is officially addicted to books. It started with the Gregor series. It got him. He read late into the night and woke up early to read... he devoured the books. Now he's reading Eragon and the Hardy Boys series... he wants to read ALL the Hardy boy books. His good friend only has 10 to go, so it's kinda like a competition. Anyway, if your kids are younger and you worry that they will never REALLY love to read. Don't worry. I think it's a stage. They catch it. I kinda think Jakob's intellect was above his reading ability... if that makes sense. I think he was smarter than the books he could read so he was bored. Now that he can read harder, cooler books that hold his interest- he's hooked.i LOVE it! being a book addict myself, I LOVE seeing my kids read, and want to read, without me forcing them to. Reading for pleasure, not just reading.i love to hear "Mom, Hurry! Get my book...I need to go potty!!" love it.

September 12, 2009

for sale...

75 cents each or TWO for a dollar...

picky eaters... i got one!

this is leah (above)... at one. she's eating, she's smiling... this is leah (below)... at three. she's storing. holding. drawing out the misery. OK... many of you may have hated me (a tiny bit) because all of my kids have been really good eaters. weird good eaters. I mean, they have things that they don't like, but for the most part they eat anything. and, i know. some of you have hated that. now, it is time for you to REJOICE! i'm humble by nature... (doesn't every humble person write about their humility?) and, if not by nature, certainly having a large family has taught me humility. but i think i may have had a small bit of pride watching ALL of my kids eat spinach fish quinoa jicama (they fight over asparagus and edemame...) yes. i do believe i had some pride. so, when leah entered our life i wasn't quite aware. she wasn't a good eating baby, and i didn't really work with her. i have all good eaters, so i didn't mind that she ate string cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt and mild cheddar everyday for lunch... for 2 years. Sometimes she eats everything... but, many times she slips by... not eating much of her dinner and REALLY customizing her breakfast and lunches... i noticed the signs today... the quiet exit from the table after eating NOT ONE BITE of her dinner... the picking out the tiny, tiny pieces of spinach on her spoon... she gags when she tries to swallow and she has even thrown up once or twice... (i made the mistake of taking her with me to the store and showing her the dead fish at the fish counter-- eye balls and everything. Then, we cooked fish that night. Leah told me over and over that she REALLY does not like fish. After minutes of my best "get your kid to eat hard things" tactics, she voluntarily put the fish into her mouth with a smile... but, upon trying to swallow, she gagged and choked and threw up a little onto the floor. SHE KNEW that the fish BIT her... she said, "See mom, that's not fish, that's a MEAN SHARK." she won that night. no fish for leah.) It is the keeping ONE BITE in her mouth for a LONG, LONG time that finally led me to accept the fact. i have one. this child can not be bribed, coerced or forced to eat. when i ask if she wants to eat one bite or go to bed without any food she gladly chooses, "BED!" when i tell her that her feet are crying and they need some food, she tells me they like CHEESE. when i tell her that "chicken" makes her strong, she reminds me that Kool-Aid makes her stronger. yup. we all need one. drew could have been my one, he's picky, but my sheer skill (see the humility) expanded him into the horseradish eating child he is today. (yes. he eats horseradish but not whip cream-- he's weird.) But, picky kids are weird. I still remember sweet madilyn dewsnup who would puke with a pea but would eat a huge slap of steak fat with a smile. weird. drew, he's NOT my picky eater. leah-- she beat me. and, i really don't mind if she eats cheese the rest of her life. at least, i don't think i mind. here's proof it started young...
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