Thursday, August 28, 2008

The three people you meet at the grocery store

I think there should be a Mommy Olympics. If so, you could have events like how fast you can quiet a baby using the 5 S's, or surviving a long distance car ride. But I think the main event I'd be interested in watching would be a trip to the grocery store with more than one child. Points could be given based on whether you got all the items on your list, or if you remembered your coupons, and used your savings card.

I think going to the Publix is one of the most stressful things I do regularly as a mom. And it's not like I can just decide not to do it anymore. We have to eat! I'm seriously considering making trips around 9pm after the kids are in bed. It seems like such a waste to go during my 'free time' but it may be worth not dealing with the insanity of taking the kids along.

The simple solution would be to send Hubby to the store, right? Well, there's a lot of problems with that. For one, I never really know what I need until I see it (or until I see it's on sale). Two, that would still put me at home watching the kids. Three, he always comes home with some kind of specialty drink or expensive meats or other things I think of as special event items.

I had an epic trip to Publix last week culminating in A pushing G out of the cart. But you know it's not going to be fun when the whining begins when you get to the first aisle. A realized she wasn't on the 'juice side' of the cart. OH NO! THE WORLD WILL END, I PUT MY DAUGHTER ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE CART. Then she whined about not wanting to be strapped in for the next 10 aisles. I reminded her over and over that she needed to have a good attitude or else she wouldn't be getting a cookie. Of course I already knew she wouldn't be getting a cookie on this trip, but if I'd told her that she'd been ballistic the rest of the trip and I needed something that might make her turn her attitude around (is that terrible!?).

Now G on the other hand was peachy keen for the first 1/2 of the trip. He'd look over and say, 'was wong A?' And then happily play with his book or point out Dora balloons. But about halfway they apparently decided to switch up. A started keeping in mind the cookie and decided I meant what I said about not getting unstrapped. Then she wanted a hug and said she felt better. So G sees what's happening and realizes that they can't both be cooperative at the same time so he steps up to the plate. By the time we get over to the milk, he's hitting her and punching her for some reason. It's all really a blur now, I think I just was trying to make it through. It's about this time I realize that shopping no longer is a pleasure.

Where did the days go when Hubby and I would meet up at Publix in our dating days and we'd laugh about all the different names for sodas or just chat about our day? Or even something simple like being able to get in and out in under an hour? I always felt Publix's motto, 'where shopping is a pleasure' was true.

It would probably still be stressful if we were the only people in the store, but knowing that other people are only a few feet from my whiny kids makes the trip worse. Thankfully, most people just ignore it. But there are those who feel they need to comment. They fall in to three categories really:

1. The Grandparent: God bless them, old people know that kids can be crabby sometimes. Many a well meaning old man or woman has come up to my kids and said, "what's wrong sweetheart?" and tried to talk them out of their unhappiness. The result is that the kids get scared of them and quiet down for a minute but then start right back up again as soon as they are gone.

2. The dirty looks person: My least favorite. I narrow my eyes and glare at my computer screen just thinking about them now. They may not say anything to me, but they don't have to, I know what they are thinking. "Gee whiz, those kids are loud, why doesn't she keep them under control?" They are the middle aged man (who I'm sure doesn't have kids) or the 'together mom' whose only child is calmly munching on a rice cake or organic cardboard...I mean cracker.

3. Sympathetic Mom: God's way of encouraging me. Today I had a lady pat me on the shoulder and tell me "You're doing good" and, "it's always more humorous when it's not your own kids." My only solace is that other moms are dealing with the same thing.

But I did treat myself today. I did finally make it over to the bakery where I picked up two cookies for the kids. No, I didn't cave in, but I did tell them that if they behaved and were good in the checkout aisle they could have the cookie after dinner (I compromised with A and gave her 1/2 a cookie, G got nada). While I was at the bakery I spotted the Bavarian creme filled eclairs and decided that I had been a good Mommy and I deserved a treat. Definitely worth 70 cents, mmm. The lady working behind the counter even tried to give me a cookie. I guess I looked like I needed one.

Seriously, next time I'm getting my iPod, a Frappichino, and going BY MYSELF!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Chatty G

G really is talking a lot more. Sometimes I'll hear one of them talking in the other room and I can't tell who is talking because G is starting to use full sentences. The other day he said:

"Oh, dang it, I got milk on my face."

"White-ning MaCeen ooh stuk a mud? (Lightning McQueen, are you stuck in the mud?)

(As I'm trying to dress him) "No, mommy I don't wike dat shirt."

"Mommy, pursey is sweeping ova dere" (Percy the train was laying on his side)

Oh, and when I asked him I he wanted me to cut his hair he said, "No mommy". Hehehe.

UPDATE: So yesterday the kids were going through the pantry and I've got 3 cans of Miller Lite on the shelf to use for when I make my Beer Bread. G picked one of them up, pretended to drink one and then looked at me and said, "Daddy's Juwice Mommy!"

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Girls weekend

I have lived out my sister's college days in one weekend.

This past weekend I met up with a 8 of her girlfriends and we had a big bachelorette weekend. I planned the accommodations, looked into restaurants, and planned the meals at the condo. The other girls took care of the party aspects. The place was quite nice, in the middle of everything. Next door is a mall with 3 stories of stores, a movie theater, bar, Starbucks, Cold Stone, and an ocean side bandshell with concerts at night. The condo place itself had 4 pools, a lazy river, and indoor mini golf and spa.

On Friday night everyone arrived by 9:30 we started getting ready to out to a club. I jokingly asked Sis if she thought we'd be ready by 11pm, but we didn't leave until. I'm pretty sure this was my first time at a club, I'd been to swing dance nights at some clubs in Gainesville in college, but none after I turned 21 and so they all thought it was so cute that this was my first club experience. So we get in and some guy who worked there came up and asked us what 10 beautiful women were doing all dressed up and if this was a special occasion. I told him my sister was getting married soon and Sis said the actual bacholrette party was going to be the next night and that we'd come back to this club if he could get us all free cover. Totally a my mom thing to do, I was pretty proud of her! He said he could do that and then he showed us up to the VIP lounge area and sent 2 bottles of champagne to our table. It was fun to dance, but it was really crowded and smelled like smoke all over. At around 2:30 we left and walked back to our condo, only 2 blocks away. We did have to help one of the girls back as she had too much to drink and ended up throwing up when we got back to the condo. Sis said that now I had experienced her college life.

I can't say that I feel like I missed out on much. While I enjoyed dancing and goofing off with the girls, it's not really my thing to go out and drink a bunch. I felt a bit out of place at times, and they joked that I was the Mother Hen, but in general had a good weekend.

The next night we went out to dinner, stayed to drink and listen to music, and then to the club again. This time we got there around 11:30 and stayed until 3am. When we got back to the condo I stayed up even later talking to three of the other girls there. One was engaged and the other two had recently broken up with their long term boyfriends. As I listened to them I could feel their longing for exactly what I have: A loving husband and a family. They are at a tough point in their lives. They asked my opinion about things and I was able to share with them about God's plan for relationships and at around 5:30 I wrapped the conversation up by praying for them. They mentioned several times that they appreciated it and our chat.

The Lord opens up doors in all different places. I had been praying in the weeks leading up to the trip that God would help me to be a good role model for them and that they might see something different about my life that would give them a desire for God. It was a blessing to be able to give them comfort and perspective.

It was interesting to see what college might have been like for me. What if I had joined a sorority instead of Campus Crusade? What if I had gotten more involved in Psychology socials instead of a Bible Study. I don't regret a moment of my college experience and I feel it was one of the sweetest times of growth in my life. I met and married the love of my life, I made so many good friends, and I grew in understanding and maturity. At 27 years old I always feel more at home with my 30 something friends. Even though the girls on this weekend were only 2 or 3 years younger than me I feel like I chose the right path for me.

Monday, August 18, 2008

I can't do it!

I just can't bring myself to do it. My eyes tear up when I think about it. It's not really that hard, I could have someone else do it but I just don't know if I can allow it to be done. But people are starting to say things and I'm starting to feel pressure to do it. One day I'll just have to get myself all hyped up and just do it.

My son needs a haircut.

But I can't do it! I can't bring myself to cut those golden curly locks. People have said to me, "Oh she's so cute." or "His hair is really getting long, when are you going to have it cut?" and "You just need to have another baby so you'll get a girl and she can have long hair."

So sometimes I think, yeah, I really should cut it. Then I think, ah forget what other people say. I love watching the bouncy curls as he runs down the hall, or running my fingers through them as he cuddles on my lap. I get teary-eyed thinking that his hair will never be the same after it gets cut. What am I to do?

I'm putting it off for now. I'll let you know if I get enough guts to do it :o)

Monday, August 11, 2008

God of Wonders-Caedmon's Call/Third Day

This is my ultimate favorite song. The lyrics are so great and it just leads me into worship so easily. I don't remember the first time I heard it, but my favorite group is Caedmon's Call so I probably bought the CD right when it came out. On this song they collaborated with Third Day and it made for a great combination.

It came out while I was in college. I remember sitting in my car on the way to some kind of exam and at stop light this song came on and the sun was setting and the sky was so beautiful. I remember singing and crying just realizing how beautiful the world is and how wonderful God is.

The lyrics express my wonder at how big and incomprehensible God is to my small mind. He is beyond our galaxy, holy, and everything we see around us shows his beauty and creativity. I remember learning about astronomy and the professor gave some physical examples of how big other planets were compared to earth, and then how small our galaxy is compared to other galaxies and it all just blows my mind! I can't comprehend it all, and yet God created it all and can keep track of the number of hairs on my head. In physiological psychology I remember studying about the human eye and how complicated it is. I just sit in amazement as people can think that all this just happened through evolution. It's obvious to me that the universe is declaring it was created by God.

Anyway, I love this song and love listening to it when I'm outside enjoying nature, so I thought this video would be a good way to show the beauty and complexity of our universe.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

G-Rated Bible

I'm the Sunday School teacher for the 2 and 3 year old class in August and A is in the class. She likes when I'm the teacher and we are studying the story of Esther this month. A loves the VeggieTales video of Esther and has been going around calling herself Queen Esther and G, of course, is Cousin Mordecai.

The story of Esther is that she's a beautiful Jewish girl chosen to become the Queen for Xerxes, the King of Persia. Cousin Mordecai doesn't bow down to Haman (one of the King's top men). Haman tricks the king into signing a law to kill all the Jewish people. Mordecai tells Esther to go to the King and ask him to save the Jewish people. She's allowed to go uninvited, but bravely faces the King. He listens to her and ends up having Haman killed and the Jews saved. (That's the quick version, lots of other things happen too). Today the lesson was about Haman's plot and Esther preparing to go to the King.

A lot of these Bible stories are not exactly "G" rated. I mean, if they were made into a Disney movie (like Prince of Egypt) I wouldn't take them to see it. Not yet at least. A friend of mine who doesn't take her son to church was asking me about this the other day. She was asking what they teach in Sunday School and if they tone it down for the kids. She wanted to know if they told the story of Jesus, with the cross and all. So today as I was telling the story, I didn't exactly 'dwell' on the fact that Haman wanted to kill Mordecai (and all of the Jews), but it's not something you can leave out of the story.

So what effect does that have on a young mind? Is it to early to discuss death with A at almost 4 years old? Does she even have the capability to understand or does it just go over her head?

So A tonight has been pretending to be Esther again, but this time she's been saying stuff to G like this:

Baby Mordecai, are you sad that you have to die? It's okay, I'll give you a hug.
Mordecai, I have to go in the closet now and die. Are you going to be sad? Are you going to cry?
Okay, Mordecai, lets go over here and die together. This looks like a good spot.

YIKES!!! What have I done?

Update: So I was putting her to bed tonight and read her Bible story. It just happened to be the story of Jesus rising from the grave. After the story was over she said:

A: Mommy, am I going to die?
M: Well, honey, everyone dies eventually
A: I don't want to.
M: When you die you can go to heaven.
A: But what will I eat there?
M: I don't know baby, I've never been there, but it's a wonderful place. You never will be hungry and never get boo boos.
A: But I don't want to go to heaven! I don't want to die ever I just want to stay.
M. Okay baby, why don't we pray about it and ask God to help you feel better about it. You don't have to go to heaven right now, I don't want you to go right now either. We'll pray that God lets you stay right here for a long time. Okay?

Anyone else deal with this kind of stuff?

Friday, August 8, 2008

The Golden Rule

Hubby and I are at our wits end sometimes. I think we forget that our daughter is not even 4 years old and we expect much more from her. I hope that is the case anyway, and that we aren't raising a selfish brat. When I read other moms blogs, or am on the phone with another mom and hear their kids doing the same as mine I take comfort (it's the ones with the perfect angels that I just don't relate well to).

One lesson we just can't get to sink in for A is the Golden Rule. You know, do unto others as you'd have done to you. She just will grab (or should I say snatch) a toy from G, push him down, or hit him with something. This week in particular has been trying. We've all had a cold and so not only are we all sick (meaning less energy, less patience) we've also not been able to go anywhere and have been stuck at home inside, going a bit stir crazy. They've watched more than their quota of videos this week.

I don't really know the solution for this but prayer. Prayer that we are doing the right things, prayer that she would change and grow in self-control, prayer that we'd be patient and not just get so frustrated with her. One's sense of justice can overpower a desire to be calm when you see some child tackle your own child and take their toy, even if the offender is your own child. I still get that Mother Cub feeling and want to protect G from all that.

I keep telling her that we don't let G do those things to her and we aren't going to let her do them to him. Patience, patience, right? What happened to the light at the end of the tunnel I had been seeing in regards to her turning a corner in her attitude? I can't wait for school to start again! More regularity in our week, other people encouraging good social skills with her, plus a break for me.

Then there are those sweet times like tonight when, after reading bedtime stories, she just wanted to cuddle with G in my lap, then sing to him and pray with him before bed. My darling little girl.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Outsmarting Me

A is one pretty smart cookie.

Tonight she was having a bad attitude and Hubby had to give her a spanking for talking mean to him. Afterwards she ran off saying, "I'm going to run away from God!" I guess she thought that would make us upset or something. I came out into the hallway as she was toning down her attitude and deciding to be a little nicer. One of the kids most requested Bible stories is Jonah. I said to her, "You can't run away from God, you might get eaten by a whale." She replied, "No I won't Mommy, there are no whales in our city."

Well, there goes that idea.