April 27, 2011

Still here

I have been horrible about keeping up with my little blog. Not that all 7 of my readers don't really know what's going on in our lives anyway. I do want to re-assure you all that we have been busy around here learning some life lessons and having some fun. Lessons like:

Don't leave your Raingutter Regatta boat to do the day of the competition. The glue has to have time to dry or you will just end up with a mess.

You must wear shoes, not sandels to preschool and if you decide to not change into appropriate footwear when Mom comes to the school, you have to leave. We all have choices to make. Some are easier than others.

Stay away from the nest the small Mama bird is building in the backyard. She's mean when she wants to be and she doesn't care that she's 1/50th the size of you.

Taking a chance and a road trip now and then can be more fun than you thought it would be. Spending time with Grandpa is cool, and away from your sister is better. Coming home is always good too.

Growing a garden is a lot of work, every day. Seeing tiny seeds sprouting is a great payoff. It will be a bigger payoff if/when we actually get to harvest something. It's a community garden plot, which means it's in the open and critters like gophers, rabbits,snails, cats and dogs and neighborhood children all have access. Being obedient and doing it anyway is worth it too.

The word Vaccine really means shot. It's not good, even if you do get your choice of cool stickers afterwards. You learn you can't be bribed where pain is involved.

Having Easter dinner with friends who didn't plan in advance to come is heartwarming. If you open your heart and your home to new people you are blessed with love and laughter. And pineapple upside down cake is awesome. So are Bunny biscuits.

When the Wii breaks, your kids will find other things to occupy their time. Including building forts, digging in the yard, blowing bubble and actually talking to other people. We've decided to get it fixed, eventually.

It's okay when things don't turn out exactly how you planned. Especially when it's a casserole in the oven that never quite heats up. You can have a good dinner out of cereal, toast and left over hard boiled eggs. And you get to be creative for dinner for the rest of the week while repairs are mapped out to said oven. Of course there's no propane for the grill right now either.... so pancakes for dinner on the electric griddle it is! Yipee!

Choosing your own clothes and dressing yourself does not necessarily mean Mom will let you out of the house in said outfit.(What, she said, they both have stripes? Reminds me of her Grandmother.)

You can never predict when a good conversation will happen. Having unexpected conversations with your Big Kid about your beliefs is amazing. It's even better that you were both receptive to learning and being taught something important. Those are the times that make parenting worth it.


April 8, 2011

Our Recent Road Trip

Please tell me your road trips sound something like this... I can't be the only one.

Mom, the GPS says you are going the wrong way. Turn around.
At about 35 miles in when it barely starts raining, I realize I have no windshield fluid and a smeared mess on my windshield making in difficult to see, at best. So, the next small town, I stop to buy some. While opening the foil covering, it splashes up all over my face and the only thing I can see is the label that's very large and says POISONOUS. Perfect.

Mommy, I can't find my Strawberry Shortcake. We left her! We have to go back. I answer: No, she's in the trunk. She says: Then stop and let's get her right now.

10 more miles down the road and the little one is already doing the potty dance. We in the middle of the desert, with nothing but cactus and RV's traveling at 35 mph around us at the side of the road peeing in the rain. I have to remind myself I have a good life. I love being a mom. Really, I do.

Mommy, can you ask Brother to read me a story? Brother uses voices she doesn't like. Mommy, can you ask brother to STOP.READING.THAT.BOOK!!!

The windshield wipers then decide to disintegrate. The right side starts scraping the glass. I thank Heaven for the RainX I decided I HAD to use. 30 miles in the rain to the next town.

Now to get the wipers off in the parking lot of Riley's while it's raining and both the kids want out. My size is sold out in the affordable wipers, of course and I have to get the pricey ones. I did get an offer of help, after I was done, from a nice young man who kept calling me Ma'am. Military, right out of boot camp, buying wipers for his brand new Mustang GT. After they are installed again, and more than 30 minutes has passed, the little one is again doing the potty dance. To the gas station.

I try to pay for gas at the pump while the big kid takes the little one to the bathroom that I can see from where I stand. The screen is broken and the pump won't work. I have to go in and cause a line to form while the overworked clerk figures it out and my kids walk out of the bathroom and look lost. Yikes.

They are hungry. They don't want the sandwiches I have packed. They will eat the cookies, bananas and crackers instead. I look in the back seat and see crackers flying across the car. It's loud back there.

As it turns out, the more expensive wiper didn't work all that well either. Now I have a smear directly in my line of view on the driver's side every time the wiper swooshes by.

We approach the agriculture checkpoint. I am asked if I have any fruit or plants. Before I can say anything the short kid yells that she wants the strawberries, NOW! Why yes, officer, I have some sliced strawberries, but if you take them from me, I am leaving the child with you too. We are told to have a good day and allowed to leave.

Another potty break. This one is off of some random exit where I happened to find a baseball park with an open bathroom. I make the kids run around the bases 6 times in the wind and drizzle before I will let them back in the car, hoping to make them tired. It doesn't work.

Here come the hills. My cruise control is working great, but I guess not everyone's is. Mom, we are playing leapfrog with that white Mustang. No, I am going the same speed. He is not. He is playing leapfrog.

Let the songs begin. It stops the hitting for a while. We sing 3 Little Monkey's Swinging in a Tree, If You're Happy and You Know it (except nobody claps), I Had a Little Turtle, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, and Popcorn.

It starts to snow on the top of the pass. I slow down and say something casually about the snow. The Little One can't see it and so she loudly argues with both me and her brother for a long time. Until it quits snowing.

They are touching each other. I don't know why. They have an entire backseat. It's making me and them crazy. I try turning the radio back on. It doesn't work and the screaming continues until I scream and scare them quiet. Yes, I am loosing it at this point. Are we there yet?

Let's teach Sis to count to 20. And so about 20 times in a row she misses 17, 18, and 19. She hits 20 every time though. Maybe she'll get it soon.

They need more snacks. They don't like what I have to offer. I say too bad.

Little One spills red juice all over her green pants and has another fit.

The radio comes back on. On NPR, which is about all we listen to, the conversation is about the government shutdown looming. Big kid wants to know what that means for us. Do we have enough money to get through the month? Will he still have to go to school?

I get a call on my hands free wireless headset from the neurologist at the hospital who wants to discuss the Big Kid's MRI results. By this time I am stressed enough and driving fast, so I tell him to spill it quickly and remember that I am driving. He says everything's fine, the kid has a good brain and there aren't any visible problems right now. Good enough for me. I hang up.

I see a shoe fly across the back seat of the car in the rear view mirror. I don't care.

Traffic starts up for real. We are almost home and I am happy.

Total miles: 269. Total time: 5 hours 48 minutes. I decide I am off of the road trip circuit for a while. It's exhausting.

April 6, 2011

So much to catch up....

Seriously, I should be doing 7 other things right now including packing for at least an overnighter. I also have a class to teach in about 2 hours and need to find something respectable to wear. I just felt like I needed to fill you in on some of our latest adventures a little. I have bigger posts planned, but they aren't quite ready to go yet. It's on my list.... really.

For our 19th Anniversary this year Justin and I were able to do a little get-a-way. We had such a great time in a small little coastal town not too far away. Grandpa Joe came and stayed with the kids. I think they wore him out. He left quickly once we got home. We went to Knott's Berry Farm without kids, which was a blast. We went whale watching, to the town's small festival, hung out on the beach, walking and exploring. It was amazing and we needed it after the past couple of months.

Megan turned 4 a couple of weeks ago and we had a perfect Pink and Purplealicious party for her and her friend. There was glitter and cupcakes and games and the trampoline. So much fun. I think the glitter will still be on the porch when we move in another 2.5 years.

Oh, I got my hair cut off. I know I do it about every 5 years and it was time again. It was long and hard to keep up and after two weeks of having it up every day Megan told me "You don't always have to wear a pony tail, Mom." Well, since that would require more effort and energy than I had, I decided to do something about it. On her birthday we both got haircuts and then we came home and did our nails. So much fun.

There has been a lot more going on the past few weeks also. It has made me remember and think about how lucky we are to live in a beautiful area, with great friends all over the world who care and think of us. We have a little family who loves each other, even though things can be hard sometimes. We work together to be happy. What a blessing.