Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Grateful that the bathroom door was not locked, I rushed in, scooped up SAC, helped them get dressed again, and soothed lots of tears in the process. Then I carried SAC to the couch, and with lots of cuddles, SAC fell asleep in my arms for the rest of quiet time.
As I lay there trying not to giggle I couldn't help thinking that someday this will be a special memory, because SAC rarely naps anymore, and never on Mommy. It was one of those times I love, a funny moment when only Mommy can save the day.
But if you're ever staying at our house, please try to stay awake in the bathroom.
Monday, October 26, 2009
Our toaster oven (not the drop-in kind) comfortably fits 3 round waffles, and bulges the door open with 4. With 5 people eating the waffles, you can imagine that there is often some wait time involved...
Here is what I heard:
Caleb: Mommy, may I please have more waffles?
Me: Yes, Caleb. They're cooking right now.
(No more than 4 seconds later) Caleb: Mommy, can I please have more waffles?
Me: Of course, Caleb. They're cooking right now. Would you like to watch for the light to go off?
Caleb: No, I would like another waffle.
Me: OK, just wait while they're cooking.
Caleb: Mommy, may I please have another waffle?
And so it went on and on, for the entire 2 minutes it takes for a waffle to toast.
Aaaaaahhhh! I thought, after going through this every 4 seconds. Just listen to me! I WANT you to have waffles! I'm cooking them as we speak! You must be patient!
And then it dawned on me...How often is this the way I pray to God? I keep telling Him over and over what I need. Like He doesn't know. Like He hasn't anticipated my need before I even spoke it - the first time - just like I put those crazy waffles in before Caleb even finished his previous waffle. Like He doesn't care - even more than I care to feed my precious children!
How many times do I think I know what I need, and that I need it NOW. Maybe He's just cooking it all up as I speak?! Maybe He's already got it ready, and He's just waiting for ME to be ready?! It's OK to learn to be patient isn't it? He knows best!
On the other hand, I think He wants us to ASK Him for what we need and/or want. When my children want something from me, I want them to ask, and ask politely and respectfully. Around here, demanding gets you nothing but a big fat NO from Mommy. I'm sure God is more gracious than I am, but I'm also convinced that even though He knows our need and has prepared all good things from before the beginning of time, He wants us to ASK Him, and do it respectfully.
As the waffles toasted and my mind warmed all these thoughts, I took the time to speak my thoughts to the kids. They looked at me with their glazed look of "Mom is spouting on her soapbox again, and all we want are waffles," but I'm praying that someday it will mean something to them. Maybe someday they will want to be married, and God hasn't brought the right spouse into their lives yet. He's not necessarily saying NO, but maybe "Wait while the waffles are cooking! You don't want soggy waffles anyway!" Maybe it will be something else, I don't know.
But in the meantime kids, don't fret the wait. In the end, it won't seem that it was so long of a wait after all.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Even more of a marvel is to see in him how his faith in God is growing. When he prays, he prays with fervency, with what can only be termed "childlike faith" to God, who (obviously to Daniel) is really listening and acting on Daniel's behalf. If only the rest of the world could see it as clearly as he does!
Recently Daniel has had some bad dreams at night, and has been afraid to go to sleep in the dark. He wants his nightlight, songs to be sung, each member of the family to pray for him, etc. It is precious, but still concerning.
So last night he started panicking again, and Peter told him to go back to his room and HE ask God to protect him from bad dreams. The look on Daniel's face was priceless, like 'Do you think He would Dad?' Peter went back with him to tuck him in and listen to his prayers, but the sweetest thing was that he announced "OK. I'll give God a try!"
With that, he promptly went to sleep and slept like a baby through the night.
Tonight when it was bedtime he wasn't afraid at all.
"Do you want to pray and ask God to protect you from bad dreams Buddy?" I asked
"Yes. I already did."
"Did God protect you last night? Did you decide if you can trust God?" I queried
"Yes. I can trust Him. He takes care of me."
Ah, the peace that passes understanding. If only we all had the faith of a child, in the one true omnicient, omnipresent, omnipotent God.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
"Oh really?" Peter questioned
"Yes, because I can feed us all the food in the pantry. The only think I can't do yet is get money and get us places."
Just a few minor things...
Thursday, August 13, 2009
- Was a flower girl last week in her Aunt Mary's wedding. She was lovely (of course), and gets the award for the best traveler in the kids group. She is a pro. She gets the gear in, sits down with the ipod, and kicks back for the flight.
- Can hardly wait to start the next level of math, Math-U-See's "Gamma." Lest you think that she is boringly studious, let me assure you that although she is rip-roaring-ready to begin multiplication ("multiplicating" as she calls it), the real reason is that the book binding is PINK. How could they have known what a motivating factor that would be to a 6 year old girl? And what will happen when the boys are ready for that level?
- Was the Hero of the Wedding. He wanted a job (Hannah had one...) but the ring bearer job was already taken. I told him that he had a special job to watch quietly and pray. He said that he would not, because he was going to be "The Hero!" Aunt Mary and I agreed that this was a fine job for him. Then he spent the entire weekend trying to figure out what The Hero should be doing. He finally landed on the idea that a hero is a gentleman, so he dashingly opened every door for every lady he could find. I tell you, this kid is a keeper!
- Daniel gets the award for the cutest moment on the plane. He is learning to recognize words and logos, and while traveling quickly identified the words and logos for our carrier, American Airlines. You have to know that Daniel has an uncommonly loud and clear projecting capability (ie. when he was born he came out screaming so loud that even the doctor was shocked). So there he was on the plane identifying every American plane he saw. This got to be a problem at the Dallas airport, as it is their hub. "American!" he exclaimed, pointing long bony fingers, "American!" over and over and over again. It was very cute, and was only be topped by his breaking out into song as we taxied to the runway "American! American! [God shed His grace on thee....]" at which point everyone on the plane craned to see the 4 year old singer and the entire plane erupted in chuckles. That's my Daniel! At least he carries a tune well.
- Has gone from being a constant drowning risk to a good swimmer! That is nothing short of an answer to prayer, and the work of a wonderful swim teacher. He is still our cuddly little guy.
- Caleb gets the award for the wedding stopper. Just after the pastor asked the formal legal questions about if anyone knew any reason why they should not be married, Caleb blurts out "Hannah! NOOOOO!!!!!" Apparently, he had been irritating Hannah in the pew during the ceremony, and she had had enough and hauled off and slugged him hard! Peter was sitting there with Abby sleeping in his arms, trying to shush them. I was standing up in the front trying to look like nothing had just happened. It seemed like everyone in the world looked first at Caleb, then back at me to see my reaction. Thank goodness Aunt Mary thought it was funny! Sometimes parenting is so humbling...
- Gets the sweetness award. She is so endearing to everyone! She copies animal sounds when you read to her and watches your mouth and imitates sounds and words as she is able. Her four words are: Mama, Dada, Nigh-Night, and Bob (as in Bob the Builder, Daniel's newest obsession).
- She has also turned into our speed-crawler. The bigger kids think she is so cute that they don't even mind when she crawls right through their toys on the floor. I hope that continues for the rest of their lives (but I doubt it).
- Gets the working-so-hard award. He is so diligent in his work, but he knows how and when to stop and play. He is so sweet too. I told him I was craving frozen yogurt while we were in Florida, and when we were in the airport he came back from walking the boys with a huge cup of Butter Pecan for me.
- Has been doing the P90X exercise regimen for a some weeks now and is having great results. I tried doing the Ab Ripper with him one night and it wasn't easy! I'm sure I could never keep up with plyometrics (or whatever it is called) and most of the others! The whole "bring it!" mentality cracks me up, but I've got to respect Peter's stick-to-it-ness. I'm thankful that he doesn't do it every single day, and that he has some give in his diet too. He's looking great, and feeling good. I'm proud of him.
- Gets the brave traveler award. When we got to the airport to leave for Florida, Peter unloaded the car to so I could get in line, but there were no porters on the street! I ran to find someone and the security told me they were all busy just then. There were no carts around. So I circled the kids and told them that we were going to have to get all the gear in by ourselves. I swung two carseats onto my back, held a few carry-ons, and pushed Abby in the stroller. I had each of the 3 other kids pulling rolling suitcases and carrying things on their backs. Miraculously, we stayed together and got to our ticket counter, at which point a porter appeared to ask if we would like him to help. Yeah right, like I'm going to pay him something after I just herded (and "herded" is the best word) 4 kids, 3 suitcases, 2 carseats, 1 stroller, and 3 carry-ons into the line!
- Is loving summer. We swim every day, and do school when we feel up to it. I especially love the stage that Abby is in right now. The whole world is there to explore! She is just so...adorable! I love being a wife and mother. It is a lot of work, but so rewarding. Peter had a lot of mommy duties this weekend, and after the wedding, he told me that being a mom was hard work. Yes, yes it is. I'm glad he can appreciate it!
Friday, July 10, 2009
Then I realized what a beautiful day it was becoming outside and decided, with my eyes still closed, that today was a zoo day.
Fun Flexible Fridays. That's what we call them around here. On Fridays we do fun/education things that we never seem to make room for if we didn't have a designated day. We have French toast, play with friends, and try to do as many things that start with "F" as possible, only because Friday starts with an "F!"
In the car on the way to the zoo, this was part of our conversation:
Hannah: "Mom, you know what America has in common with Canada?"
Mommy: "Well, what do you have in mind?"
Hannah: "We both speak two languages, English, and another one. Canadians speak English and French, and we speak English and Spanish."
Mommy: Thinking that she must be a California girl..."Yes, that's true." Sort of...
Hannah: "And I speak some French, so if we go there, I'll talk for us!"
Mommy: Thinking it would be a lot more useful if she spoke Spanish like we're trying to learn "That's a great offer! So what French do you know?"
Mommy: "Which means thank you."
Mommy: "I think that is an English word too. Did you learn that in Fancy Nancy?" (a book series)
Hannah: "Yes. And 'Paris.'"
Mommy: "Yes, the capital of France. Good!" Thinking that we'll be off to a great start when we visit Canada OR France!
Hannah: "And I know German too...Frau, and fraulein, and the difference between them."
Mommy: Thinking that reading Heidi and The Little Princess is teaching us SOMETHING! "Yes. Good! And you also know more French from ballet, like pas de deux..."
Hannah: "Yeah, and plie. And listen to this Mom 'ARABESQUE!'"
Mommy: "Very nice!"
And so we continue much the same way down the road until we zoo.
As we are walking up to the ticket counter I realize that I must be feeling good, because this is the first time I have ventured out to take all 4 of them out to the zoo with just myself as the one single adult watching them, and that I am outnumbered if they scatter and get lost.
Mommy: "Hannah, do you know your full name and our telephone number?"
Hannah: "Yes...." Recites it perfectly
Mommy: "And my full name too?"
Hannah: With a glance like 'I wasn't born yesterday Mom!' "Yes." Recites it perfectly.
Mommy: "Daniel, what is your full name?"
Mommy: "Is that all? What is your last name?"
Daniel: With a quizzing look recites it perfectly. Caleb chimes in to tell me his full name too.
Mommy: "Good boys! And my name? What is my name, Daniel?"
Daniel: This time with confidence "Washington, D.C.!!!"
Mommy: Hmmmmm....I guess I better keep a close eye on him...
So then we go into the zoo. So much fun! So much room to jump and run! We're being so obedient the first time, and so KIND to each other! This is great! Everyone is having such a great time!!! Here are some pictures to prove it.
My four, with the classic rule of "If someone two or more people are already looking pleasant AND at the camera, by no means shall everyone else comply." (Although they do all look pleasant!)
Mrs. Llama there for petting. Notice that this girl isn't flinching from the camera. I was truly face to face with this lady, and after noticing her lower teeth, I'm glad she's muzzled. She doesn't look pleased. Sorry Mrs. Llama! I'll take my bouncing brood out of here, really!
I'm thinking I should caption the above picture "Hope," because it shows caring and love between my two oldest, that I wish to see more and more. This is Hannah lifting Daniel down from the railing he was standing on to get the best view of the giraffes. Ah, today was a good day...
This is a bit fuzzy, but what trip would be complete without a visit to "Stingray Bay, A Touching Experience." Isn't that a great name? We, obviously, love it.
Now to the rest of the day! The kids and I are rooting for pizza tonight. How else can you crown such a great day?
Monday, July 06, 2009
- We finished Hannah's butterfly project, watching and documenting the lifecycle of 10 painted lady butterflies, and reported on them at co-op. Co-op and ballet have both ended for the summer.
- We went to San Diego to visit our cousins. It was our first distance trip with 4 little ones, and it was a success! Peter had a legal continuing education course, so the kids and I went to Legoland, the beach, etc. with our cousins. You should have seen Hannah at the beach. I think it took all of about 3 minutes for her to get completely soaking wet - in her cute little dress with capris - just as we were about to go out for lunch. Ah, the joys of abandon at the beach...
- Back on the homefront, our pool was built and completed! It is beautiful and so refreshing, and just in time for the real heat. We could hardly wait for the water to go in. When the water eventually came (we had water trucks bring it in), we were all in the pool with the fire hoses. The men thought we were crazy.
- We flew to Florida! We celebrated Peter's parents 40th wedding anniversary at a beach community where they used to go when Peter was growing up. They all said it was amazing the same as they remembered. Hannah once again showed us her magnetism to the ocean. She just about lived in the water the whole week. Daniel and Caleb eventually warmed up to it as well. Those boys were covered in salt and sand the entire time. Abby happily agreed to share all baby attention with the newest grandbaby in the family, the sweet Geneva Caroline. Daniel and Hannah had their first tennis lessons. We had such a great time that we are already trying to figure out if we can go back in a few years.
- Once again we have attempted to potty train. I think I am going to go insane.
Here are few photos per Amy's request:
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Then after dinner Caleb announced he was still hungry. I handed him a banana as I started to clear the dishes, and overheard him say "I love you banana!" before devouring it. Priceless moments with our 3 year old...
Monday, April 13, 2009
Friday, April 10, 2009
The 71 items on this table are what I found today hidden underneath or behind the furniture when I decided to vaccuum. Let it be known that vaccuuming is a regular occurrence at this home. But we have a Caleb, and he hides everything. At least I have an idea of where to look for things next time.
Thursday, April 09, 2009
Wednesday, April 08, 2009
So last night spomething killed two of our chickens. We thought it got in through a loose door, so we fixed that. Lo and behold, while eating dinner tonight he came back for more. I trapped him in the hen house and am on my way to the store to buy something to kill it. TNT might be a little too destructive and I am sure there is a waiting period, so I think we are looking at a pellet gun. - Peter
Sent from my Blackberry
Friday, March 27, 2009
Daniel: "Mommy, what does 'stubborn and rebellious' mean?"
Mommy: "Well, rebellious means that if I tell you to go to the bathroom and wash your hands, and you say 'NO! I will not!,' you are being rebellious. Stubborn means to get your mind set on something and then refuse to change your mind."
Daniel: Pauses..."Mommy, what does 'temporal values' mean?"
Mommy: (Wondering where he heard that term and how to explain it to a 4 year old...) "Well, it means to be concerned only with something that is not going to last, something temporary."
Daniel: "Oooooh. I don't want that. I want to have NOCTURNAL values!"
So cute. I love that he wants to have "eternal" values, but still doesn't know that right word for it. His heart is in the right place.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Finally, Daniel springs up off the couch announcing that he getting a tissue. He grabs a kleenex and promptly wipes his nose over and over in a downward motion making a complete mess. Then he triumphantly puts the tissue back in the box. Yuck!
As if to not be outdone, Caleb grabs his bare foot and promptly wipes his nose with his big toe. Yuck!
Can you reach your nose with your toes? It's not easy! Go on, try it!
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
"Daddy! Last night I had a dream!"
Peter responded "What was it Buddy? Do you want to tell me?"
"Yes. It was about Jesus and idols."
By way of backround information, our pastor preached about idols several months ago, and Daniel was really listening. For months now he has spontaneously reminded us that 'we don't bow down to idols!' at various random moments.
Peter continued to probe, so Daniel went on:
"A lot of people were bowing down and worshipping idols!"
"Oh, that's not good. Were you in the dream?"
"What did you do?"
"I did NOT bow down to the idols!"
"That's good. Did you do anything in your dream?"
"Yes. I did not bow down to the idols. Instead, I went over and sat by Jesus - and He LOVED me."
(Smiles shared by Mommy and Daddy...)
"That's right Buddy. Jesus does love you. Thanks for sharing your dream with me."
It is so special to see my little 4 year old learning to know and love Jesus. He has a sweet and open heart. Beneath all that loud, blustery, tough boy exterior is a very sensitive heart. Of all things for him to remember about the dream, I'm glad it was that Jesus loved him.
Friday, February 27, 2009
Their most recent past-time has had a lot of role-playing. Daniel has a knight costume, complete with shield and sword (a la leftover bargains after Halloween!) and his recent mission in life has been to protect "his lady" (Hannah) and the children (Caleb and Abby), from the bad bad giant (a very large weed) in the backyard. He hacks away at the giant, and trims him down to size, and then grabs Hannah's hand and races her away from the bad giant and up to their castle - the play structure that Peter built. Hannah, always up for a good pretend, plays along with all kinds of fainting and flowery words, while attired in big cherry printed rainboots, muddy clothes and a delicate flower crown. It is worth the price of admission!!!
Early (as in 6:30) this morning they were emperor penguins, taking turns with their egg (a small travel alarm clock), alternately standing very still with the egg on their feet (penguins keep the egg on their feet tucked under their "brood pouch"), and racing to the ocean (Mommy and Daddy's shower) to eat up all the fish and krill they could, then "tobagganing" back (on their tummies) to the other one to trade places.
Sometimes Daniel is a soldier and Hannah is a military nurse. Here she gives him "CPR," while he waits patiently
then she writes him a prescription.
In case you can't read it, it says:
Daniel's Prescription: Daniel is going to spend most of his life in bed, so by the time he is 60 years old, he will be able to go back to war. The bad news is, that when he is 70 years old his scars can kill him.
So with all that drama in mind, I guess I shouldn't have been surprised this morning when I discovered that Hannah LOVES - opera. It is sooooo dramatic!!! Yesterday we studied the composer Richard Wagner, so I asked my dad if he had any Wagner recordings to supplement our study. (Most people think to teach art from a classical method - studying the masters, but I am not artistic. However, I do LOVE music, so we study music in the classical way - studying the masters.) So far, I've had lots of recordings to share, but I'm not that much into the heavy orchestral mode of Wagner, although I did grow up hearing a good amount of it, as my dad was a devoted opera fan for many years.
This morning I popped "Lohengrin" into the VHS after Peter left so I could nurse without distraction. Hannah was glued. So was Daniel. I could not pry them away - even for breakfast almost an hour later! They can hardly wait to watch more!
All this seems very providential because Peter and I have always joked that Daniel was destined for opera because he has the most amazing projection ability while still carrying a tune. Unfortunately for him, he is only allowed to be an attorney or rocket scientist - according to Hannah.
Oh well. Maybe I should teach them to multi-task their make-believe. ???
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Hannah: "Mommy, do you know how I remember things?"
Mommy: Eager to understand (!) "No, please tell me!"
Hannah: "My eyes take a picture of everything I see. So signs that we pass, stores that we pass, books that I read - I take a picture with my eyes. Then I put the picture in my brain. When I want to remember it, I take out the picture and look at it again."
Mommy: Wishing she had such a memory..."Oh! That makes sense." Now testing her as we pass a sign for an accountancy corporation "So, what did the sign in front of that brown building we just passed say?"
Hannah: "Hmmm. We went kind of fast. That picture is blurry."
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Peter (I love him!), is never going to be in danger of being called a "neat freak." He has a unique ability (that I unfortunately do not share) to be able to focus so completely on whatever task is at hand, that he can entirely block out EVERYTHING around him. That can mean that if he's working on his laptop at home, and kids are falling off the coffee table and landing all around him crying, he is completely unfazed until I come running from another room to help said children. In the case of his office, that means he is all but completely unaware of the stacks surrounding him.
Granted that he's got a lot in front of him. I like to tease him that he is secretly running some kind of security company because he isn't content with one, or even two monitors. He's got three of them lined up in a row on his credenza and he just moves from one end to the other - literally. It cracks me up! Now he's even got his office manager and his associate using two monitors. But I digress...
So we cleaned up the office. What that means is that I clean up as much junk as I can first. If there are new books, I shelve them and toss out prior editions if needed. Then we just sit there while I hold up things in front of him and he tells me where to put it.
In the process, I took 3 loads of trash to the dumpster, removed 13 rotten apples, 4 very sad oranges, and a stinky slab of string cheese in separate lunch bags under his desk, recovered 14 legal pads with only the front page used, and retrieved one of Hannah's paper dolls peeking out from a limb on an artificial plant.
I also found multiple brochures, texts, and materials that referenced or cited him as a contributor, author or speaker. While I hear what he does on an daily basis, it was so good for me to step back and see how he is involved in the community by speaking, organizing, writing and leading, all "on the side." Those things aren't even part of his every day job description of helping people at the end of their financial rope, running a law practice, administrating a law school, and leading our growing family. Wow. It gave me a new respect and appreciation for my busy husband. He's always doing something!
All that to say, that if he piles up junk in the process, I'm OK with it. That's what I'm good at - cleaning up after people. I'm just proud of my husband, and I'm glad to help in my little small ways. He's worth it, and I love him.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Saturday, January 31, 2009
So he gets up and walks over to Caleb and yells, "SORROW!" at him. His task being accomplished, he went on to play with a toy in another part of the yard.
So, now I am having a difficult time figuring out how to instruct him further because I am laughing too hard.
Friday, January 30, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
Hannah has big plans for this upcoming year. In fact, all of her plans are set for one week out of the year. Here is the transcription, spelling and all:
Monday, Sept. 4
Daddy hopefullee will retire and will have billions of dollars and spend most of his time at the house, or anywere the family gos on Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays, Wedsdays, Thrsdays, Fridays, and Saterdays.
Tuesday, Sept. 5
Mommy hopefullee will not have to nurse Abigail any times so that she does not feel tired all the time. Then she will not have to get very tired on her acount. Then she will be like magic! She will weane the baby.
Wednesday, Sept. 6
Perfect! Wedsdays are my favorite days of the week and my age is six! This is my faverite day. I love a day sometimes and I hate a day sometimes. So a quarter of Wedsdays I hate sometimes.
Thursday, Sept. 7
Daniel hopefullee will start scool in kindegarten for Mommys tests. He will work in math first. He will work in Math.U.See I will feel happy for him, very happy for him forever.
Friday, Sept. 8
Caleb hopefullee will finish being potty trained forever and ever and no more rewards! Great! I have allways, wanted him to finish it! I will feel happyer for him than ever forever and ever.
Saturday, Sept. 9
Abigail hopefullee will learn to walk and talk. Thats how she learns to get around and play. I allways hope Abby will grow up into a wise young lady.
Sunday, Sept. 10
Twins hopefullee will be due or a bit early, and be born. I would prefer the twins due than a bit early tho.
(Disclaimer - the last day is just as hopeful as all the other days, and is not to be taken as an announcement!)