Thursday, September 15, 2011

Just. Mom.

I read the funniest blog.... http://crappypictures.typepad.com/crappy-pictures/2011/06/what-it-is-like-to-not-sleep-at-night-illustrated-with-crappy-pictures.html
I so remember nights like this. I remember wishing these days would come to an end. They did. I remember waking up from a wonderful, restful sleep one night. Oh, it was a perfect night! I remember that I had not slept so well for so long...and a little 4 year old boy was walking into my room. I could see his face well, because the moon was full, and shining into through my window. He was smiling at me as if to say, "Aren't you happy to see me?" I wasn't happy to see him, for I was enjoying that well deserved rest, and he and his siblings had put me through it the day before, but I didn't have the heart to wipe that smile from his face, so I threw back the covers and let him into my bed.

There were many nights I was sandwiched in between this same child and his brother. I was afraid to move for fear of waking up one of them. Wait a minute? Since when did their sleep become more important than mine? :) Truth is, I loved it...I loved looking at them, smelling their hair, hearing them breathe.

I see my little granddaughters and think of my little blond girls....one with her high pitched laugh and the other with her thumb in her mouth. How many times did I tell the older to "hush" for that giggle was "driving me crazy" and, how many times did I pull that thumb out of my baby's mouth? Now, I tell the mother of the two little granddaughters...never to mind about such things....it will all take care of itself. I look at my three grandsons and am amazed at how beautiful they are. I love their little dirty boy smells whilst remembering telling my own to hurry and bathe.

When I was a girl, I felt it was forever that I was waiting to become a mother, and if you asked me, that was all I wanted to be. Just a mom. Just. Mom. I don't think there is anything I have enjoyed more. I couldn't wait to hold hands with someone for the first time. To get that first kiss. To say "I love you" or to hear it for the first time. I wondered the name of the person I would have children with and grow old with, whose name I would call to when I was in need of help when giving birth. It seemed like forever I waited for all of that to happen. And then it did.

So.... when my little boy came in that night with the moonlight shining on his face, I should have noticed the beauty of his little smile, and how glorious he was...for he was a glorious little boy.

I watch my oldest daughters as moms, and realize how blessed I am that they are my girls. I think I was too strict on them when they were little. What can I say, but that they were my experiment. I had to learn on them. Poor kids. By the time the boys came along I had calmed down quite a bit, and learned how to enjoy motherhood a little. I'm sorry, Cari and Laura. I hope the days of jumping on your beds when you were older made up for it a little. I'm sorry I didn't let you have more cherry and grape popsicles because of my stupified fears of staining your perfect clothes. But, hey! You both looked pretty great! I'm sorry I was so OCD about your toenails being clean all the time! Hahaha!

Life is so out there.....I could hardly wait to be a mother. Then, to hear the words, mommy, Mama, Mom. Then, I wanted to change my name and NOT hear it for awhile. Now, I long for the phone to ring so I can hear a sweet voice say "Hi, Mama", or "Mom", or to hear the front door open with little voices running up the stairs calling, "JaJa!"

My youngest is getting married. I cry whenever I think about it. I did the same with the others, but at least I always had kids to come home to. This time, I will be done. She's really flying the coop. I don't think I ever said, "Hurry and grow up!" I really did try to keep Olivia little. I knocked her down when she took those first steps, but she was determined, and walked anyway. She is determined now. I really am happy for her. I am happy with her choice. I am so missing my little children, tho.

I thought the days of being tied down to young motherhood would last forver. Now I realize that that was the shortest span of my life. And, the most precious. I know now, that I wasn't really tied to it. I was clinging to it. I've often said, I wish I could have each one of my babies back for just a few minutes now and then and hold them.....There is nothing like that sweet little face.....each one is it's own little person, and each one has something different and they leave it with you ...I guess...like an imprint that stays only with ...the mom.



Wednesday, August 24, 2011

My Daily Precious Nectar

I like Coke Zero. No, that's wrong. I LOOVVEE Coke Zero. My day just doesn't go right unless I can start out with that wonderfully carbonating twinge starting out on the tip of my tongue and bursting at the back of my throat before satisfying my belly at the end of it's journey. I live for the moment every morning when I can open my fridge and see that lovely 12-pack of coke zero sitting there. The perforated opening even smiles at me as I reach for my coveted can of glorious nectar!!!! It calls my name before I even wake up every morning!!!!

My husband knows to check if I have my supply before visiting Dick's Market, because Coke Zero must be included in our storage. OH, how I wish shelf life were a factor in Coke Zero!!!!!
I was totally out one day....posted it on FB.... my Janice-fairy dropped some on my doostep....even my friends know how I need my Zero!!!! Thank you, Janice...Never can I repay this amazing thing you did for me that day!!!!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Sweet Little Ame Deal

A few years ago, I was considering looking into adopting a little 4 year old girl. I had heard of her plight of possible abuse, and thought that perhaps she would fit into our family as the youngest child. I wanted her. I never met her. The family she lived with allegedly treated her differently than the other children in their care, for they suspected she had been fathered by someone other than the son of the matriarch. Many children lived in this crowded home, and none of the children attended school at the time, for i t was assumed they were all "home-schooled". CPS in the state of Texas had been informed of the situation, and had visited the home, from my understanding.

I asked someone about the possibility, and found that they wanted to keep her, and that was that. I didn't ask any further, and I don't know what the guidelines are. Perhaps I wouldn't have qualified, but I certainly didn't try, did I? Not long after, I found they had moved to another state, and I have wondered what happened to the little girl...if she was ok.

I found out today.

I wish I had called her bishop 6 years ago just to inquire about possibly adopting her; maybe she would still be alive. There really were people who cared...who were wondering and thinking about her, and she never knew. I think that that is what is haunting me the most.....
Maybe, what if, I wish... I don't know. .....Ame Deal

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

It Begins With Praise

I just read an excellent article by the associated press, (http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iLdzACdK65TbyhuOrXF8jG6sWPCA?docId=fbfc035bd6a04655b3739cc942235d97) about the so called "war on obesity", waged by Michelle Obama. For starters, I am not a Michelle Obama fan, and I have never felt that singling out a child for their appearance was a productive avenue to betterment. This campaign is about shame more or less, and only promotes more bullying amongst peers. It should be more about education and how we treat others. A child, of all people cannot help how they look. Educate the parents.

This started a long time ago. I know there is a problem. When I was a child in the 60s....(ok, I'm giving it away, but hey, my oldest is 31)....there were a few, shall we say, chubby kids, and, unfortunately.....sometimes, they may have been subject to ridicule. There were not as many overweight children, however, I believe that may be because there was not a fast food restaurant on every corner, and we did not have computers. My parents did not bring a candy bar home for us every time they visited the store, and we did not have a never-ending supply of twinkies in our house. My mom made good meals for us. We had good breakfasts, and healthy dinners. The school lunches were wholesome and so much better than what I have seen at the schools nowadays (unbelievable). We played outside all day during the summer. Play was work. We did drink Koolaid. Not a lot of pop. That was a real treat. We had popsicles when the truck came by.

I've rambled. ok.

I think the shame tactics this "war on obesity" campaign of MO's is counter-productive, and I'll tell you why. I saw this sort of thing do two different things to overweight friends of mine when I was a girl. Two different scenarios. One friend I'll call Donna. Overweight most of her childhood years. Just her body type it seemed. Fun girl. Not terribly fat, but her mother was after her all the time. "Lose weight! You have such a pretty face, don't you ever want to date? You want to be fat all your life?" Mind you, she wasn't a terrible mother, and her intentions were good, but, Donna just never could seem to live up to her mother's expectations, and she was on a constant roller-coaster with her weight. She was miserable. So.....she started binging and purging. She was never anorexic....but she suffered from bulimia. Lost a lot....looked really great for awhile. Satisfied her mother, who didn't know about the vomiting. Rushed to the hospital one night. Almost died. I don't know where she is now. I hope she is ok.

Another girl, I'll call Martha. She figured, "What's the point?" The more everyone kept after her, the more she ate. Her parents, her friends. It just seemed impossible for her. As long as she was being reminded about her large size, how could she do anything about it? There was no positive reinforcement there for her. No one telling her about her good qualities, or pointing out what a fantastic artist she was. They just focused on her weight. Perhaps had someone given one ounce of notice to a creative force in her life, she may have been able to make a change?

My children had this wonderful teacher in elementary school. Mrs Carter. When asked about her disciplinary tactics, she would tell you she used positive reinforcements. And that is exactly what she did. I saw this in action. She divided her class into groups. Not like you might think. She knew that there might be kids who struggled with some subjects a little more than others, and she mixed them all up. She saw it as a way to balance, and, as she put it, "They all have different strengths". In this way, they helped each other out. There was no, "smart group" vs. "not so smart group". She gave each group numbers....ie.... 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.... there were 5 children to a group. When my oldest daughter was in her class, I came to know Mrs. Carter, and I would volunteer in her class every Wednesday. One group, I think it might have been group 4, was misbehaving. Instead of calling attention to the rambunctious group, she looked for the group that was working the hardest, and not causing any commotion in the class. "Oh, look at Group One!", she said, " They are getting a power point!" You should have seen group 4 and all the groups get to work....She disciplined with praise. She looked for strengths. That same year, when she found that my daughter's weak subject was math, she also found her strength to be English, and she focused on that before she talked with her about the math, and soon the math skills were up, because the praise came first.

I have to wonder if MO was just looking for a popularity platform.



Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Enjoy....Just Enjoy!

A few years ago, a very wise friend of mine gave my oldest daughter some of the wisest counsel I have ever heard. She stood up at Cari's wedding breakfast and uttered only three words. "Enjoy, just enjoy." At the time, I thought...."Good grief, Carolee..with all I know about you, and how wonderful you are, can't you think of anything more to say than that?" How stupid we can be sometimes.
Yesterday we celebrated my youngest child's 20th birthday. I can't believe how swiftly time flies. We are warned by those much older than we, that our children will grow up quickly "right before our eyes".....but, still, we go along and fuss at them, and complain that they are refusing to obey, and that they are "driving us nuts!"....And....they are!

I look back now and realize that some of my most wonderful memories were also my craziest moments as well.
Yesterday, as I was preparing the birthday celebration for my daughter, Olivia, my little granddaughter could hardly contain herself. A very precocious three year old, she was doing her very best to behave around this incredibly beautiful birthday cake. I had to remind her over and over that we mustn't touch! We must wait until Auntie Livvy had a chance to blow out her candles, and only THEN could Meagan have a bite out of the lovely Tinkerbell cake. She tried very hard......she did her very best....at one point, she even described to me what she would do when she finally would have her piece of this very much desired birthday cake...."I'll lick it, then eat it, then lick it, then eat it, then lick it, then eat it!!!"

I could see the situation getting more and more desperate with little Meagan, and knew that if I did not take this amazing confection out of the box soon, it may go tumbling onto the floor from the table, as she kept pulling it closer and closer to the edge. Big mistake!!! Not even two minutes later did I notice frosting around the mouth of my little monster. She did not touch the cake with her little fingers. She obeyed me when I said, "Do not touch." So she just took a bite out of the side of it......Hmmmm. This was most definitely an unfair temptation for a little monkey like my MooBoo.

I finally knew that this could go on no longer, and I must get the candles on the cake so we could end Meagan's agony.

As I started placing the candles on the cake....Meagan felt she needed to help with that as well....I had to fight for my authority, yet again, against the Meagatron as she announced that SHE would be blowing them out!

We all did get the candles lit, and Olivia did get them blown out herself. Livvy also got her much coveted galaxy phone. Meagan did enjoy her serving of mostly frosting with a little chocolate cake and raspberry filling. My youngest turned 20. Things are different. I no longer shop for toys for my babies. I buy what I am told to buy.

After the cake and ice cream was had, Meagan was on an even higher high, and found some (can I just say, Phew!) CLEAR fingernail polish. Somehow managing it open she proceeded to paint a tiny spot of my sweater, and who knows what else. That was it....her mother said, "Ok, we're going home."

Now.....after all this, you might think I was a nervous wreck. I wasn't. It was very comical, and I ENJOYED every second. So....looking back, I understand exactly what my wisest of wise friends meant when she said, "Enjoy.....Just Enjoy."

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Dance Gene Is Now Dormant

There was a time in my life when I was able to do any dance step....really. When I was a girl, I could imitate anything I saw on tv, or wherever I was, in any show. I was even a little smug about it. I could catch onto any choreography in a matter of minutes. Those days are gone, and I am absolutely inept. I am an utter clutz. Worse than an elephant. I might as well BE an elephant.

I have been asked to help open the first show at the new theater in Centerville, with an opening number. Sounds easy. "Minimal dancing. Easy as walking." You'd think I could do "easy as walking", right? I don't know if my brain just isn't sending the signals to my feet or what the problem is....! I wish I had said no. No...NO! I felt like crying. I still feel like crying.

AND...THEN, they have mirrors all over, just to remind me I have 30 pounds to lose. Made me so depressed, I had Rich pick up some Marion Berry Pie Ice Cream at the grocery store. It was good, too.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Mascara on the Wall

It's amazing to me how those little black spots so magically appear on the wall in my bathroom. I've been told by a certain someone before...that...."NO....I don't do that..." Hmmm....I think, perhaps, Abbey, the cat COULD be capable of such a task. After all, she (Abbey) is very smart. She is a fetcher, and she can put the stopper in the bathtub when she wants a drink. However, I don't think she wears mascara. I know that Richard, also could be guilty. But, being the man's man he is, does not wear mascara, nor does he need it with his beautiful black lashes. I also know that I, having to be the one to use Clorox wipes to wipe it up every week or so, am not the culprit.....

Don't get me wrong...I KNOW who it is....I just want to know WHY she wipes mascara on the wall?