Saturday, September 29, 2012

"Like my Daddy"

Kate had a date tonight. She and Aiden went to see Disney on Ice with his parents. Aiden is three so I feel okay about this. Sort of. Maybe? Anyway, as a diversion when Kate left, I took Ty out to the neighborhood construction site with his shovel and rake. He had a blast. Our neighbor was up for a spontaneous play date as well! The boys both declared independently they were digging like their daddies when told not to throw shovels full of dirt or rocks over their heads. While watching Ty use his foot to help push the shovel into the rocks and stick his tongue out when concentrating, I also thought he was digging just like his Daddy!
Bath time was necessary at the end but it was absolutely worth it. I suspect we'll be back soon.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

When I am 100

While sitting in the salon last night, a very cute little elderly lady came in for her appointment with my beautician. She was the classiest little lady I have ever seen. When I say she was well dressed, I mean she was really well dressed. Think Anne Taylor complete with the perfect jewelry. She admired my hair and discussed if it was maybe a bit too short for her. Under normal circumstances, someone that age debating if my hair may be a bit too short for them would make me cringe because it would reflect how old I must look; however, this darling little lady was so classy, I was complimented. As she was led back to be shampooed, I asked Rose if she happened to know how old she was. SHE WAS 100! She came in with her daughter and was headed to dinner afterward! I couldn't get over it. She was adorable and I have not stopped smiling about her since. I have little hope of ever looking that put together but maybe by the time I am 100, I'll have it figured out. Apparently, my hair is on it's way without me!

Sunday, September 23, 2012


He asked, "how many more days until that school is done with me?" Just five sweet boy, just five. It will likely be a long week for us. The trainer will return this week to transition my room back into her care. She is legalistic about odd things and too laid back about others. I will be silently praying for one little guy who is terrified of the beds and one other child in the room. He crawls onto my lap after all the others have fallen asleep and is out within seconds. I set him in the chair and tell him I will be taking care of something and he sleeps soundly for almost an hour. Prior to our little chair routine, I spent an hour persuading a screaming toddler to lie down on his bed only to have him sleep for 15 minutes and wake up screaming again. The trainer insists the bed is necessary. She doesn't seem to think we need to protect him from the other child though. There are no victims or bullies in RIE. It's going to be a very long week. I've also broken the "no interaction" rule with the baby in the room. I can't stand to leave him lying on his back in a dim corner with tan walls. I believe babies need nurturing and interaction beyond diaper changes and bottles. Going back to ignoring his cries will be difficult. I wish I could take them home with me.

Saturday, September 22, 2012


I was slaving over a bag of microwave popcorn last night after little man and I explored the creek. As Ty said, it had very tiny water in it. Anyway, I was popping popcorn to keep him occupied until the girls called to be picked up from the football game. He was counting down along with the microwave. I was stunned. This was the first time I'd heard him count, much less backward. He is rather stubborn about these things but here he was, "eighteen, seventeen, fourteen, eleven-teen, forty-teen"...okay, maybe not. But he was cute and determined none the less.
Erin's friends had to work last night so she took her favorite seven year old to the football game with her. It made Kate's day. They had a great time bonding.

When looking through Erin's phone to see what photos she took at the game, I noted this one from earlier in the day. It isn't often I can catch Lauren willing to be photographed so I requested it as well.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

"Get out while you still have shoes!"

It was a text from my best friend the day I told her a little more about the RIE method I am supposed to be embracing in order to effectively do my job. I am a mom first. I am not a perfect mom and this journey opened my eyes. I've learned quite a bit about myself and why I parent the way I do. I am not perfect and will be doing some things differently but I cannot wrap my head around a method that allows a child to decide if and when he wants to eat, sleep or have a diaper changed.  I also can't explain why it would be okay for one child to physically express himself all over another child because he has the freedom to do so. I need to be the voice for the child who has been the target. According to RIE, by calmly removing the aggressor so he could settle down, I would be a bully. So, when confronted with my ability to embrace a theory I can't agree with so that I can be what the school needed me to be, my answer was, I cannot. I need to be a mom to my children; the ones God trusts me to raise. The ones I am nurturing and teaching right from wrong. The ones I am teaching to acknowledge their emotions and how to express them in a way society finds acceptable. I want children other people enjoy being around. The story I shared with Kristin has a child taking another child's shoes and putting them on her own feet. The shoe owner wants her shoes back but is told by the RIE facilitator that the shoes will be returned once the taker is finished with them. This is not real life. I like my neighbor's car. It runs more smoothly than mine. I'd like to take it to my sister's next month. I'll bring it back when I am finished with it. According to RIE theory, my neighbor should be fine with it. I read this in the seventh training manual I tried desperately to absorb. The next day, I was scolded for smiling at a toddler who approached me to be held. Apparently, I need to hide my emotions because toddlers have enough trouble managing their own and my smile showed judgement. I was not created to stifle smiles, laughter or the desire to give a child her own shoes.
By October 1, I am coming home and bringing Kate and Ty with me. They are thrilled. I am too. Kate's teacher begged me to let her stay even though she respects my decision. She loves her. We admire the teacher but Kate has wanted to come home since last spring. I'm looking forward it. This is not the right time for my family to have me venture into a full time position pouring into other people's children. Mine are too important. I resigned on the tenth and immediately felt relieved. I adore the little guys in my care and enjoy their families as well. This was not an easy decision but the peace I feel indicates it was the right decision.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

It was a beautiful day in the neighborhood. We spent the morning perusing the community garage sale where treasures were purchased, conversations were enjoyed, kids played together and new toys were discovered. Afterward, my favorite little man and I wandered into the field to check out the new construction equipment.
He was in his glory, although a little concerned by just how dirty those "giant tractors" were.
We had some playtime in the yard followed by grilled hot dogs. Can you get enough of Greg's assistant? He was so serious!
To Ty's delight, while taking Lauren to a friend's sweet 16 party tonight, we got to wait on a train! All of us have learned to appreciate them since they bring him such joy. They used to be a hassle.
My adorable husband said I looked like a tourist taking photos of the train. He then proceeded to point out birds, signs, grass, clouds, etc...just in case I wanted to take photos of them as well. He's cute.

Sunday, September 9, 2012


Last night Greg grounded Kate to her room for the day. I gasped a bit. It is beautiful outside! We NEED to be outside! But I remained quiet. She was being a stinker and it had gone too far. He was right. But, I headed upstairs with her this morning toting all the scrap booking supplies she's been coveting. Greg asked what I was doing and I let him know I was grounding myself to Kate's room. I then let him know we'd be taking 15 minute breaks to walk bare foot in the dirt today. He asked me if I'd lost my mind. To which I replied, "clearly".
Ty joined us for a bit and discovered the baggie of buttons. He immediately declared he needed to find one that fit. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012


I woke to cooler temps and crisp fall air this morning. It took me exactly sixty seconds to throw open all my windows, turn off the a/c and decide I needed to haul out the fall decorations. It was in the 90's this week but I am on my second bag of candy corn anyway. It hit the shelves and I thought, "I need this. It's for fall". So, by candy corn standards, fall actually started in August this year.

Some of us headed out to pick apples and find a few little pumpkins to aid my need to decorate this morning. I love this season's warm hues. Pumpkins, candles, fresh air, light sweaters....I crave it all. I suspect the drought this summer will destroy the beauty of turning leaves but I am hopeful; perhaps we'll still catch some glimpses.

Last night's storm restored a little water in our neighborhood creek. The littlest people in my house couldn't wait to explore it again.

My guys.....sporting their Buckeye apparel. I couldn't care less about anything sports related but that man of mine's moods are directly linked to how well his team plays; therefore, I quietly support OSU.

Monday, September 3, 2012

No photos, please

My friend Jill and I have taken an oath. We've promised each other that the first one of us to die will have a sign placed near them that says, "if you take my picture while I am in this coffin, I will haunt you". We've both noted family photos being taken at funerals and find that particular custom rather disturbing. That being said, I did see some gorgeous photos taken of a funeral procession for a fallen police officer in our hometown that were done tastefully and there were no images of the deceased. BUT, the cutest little girl attended the evening calling hours for my grandma. She was a petite, dark complected cutie with big brown eyes. She was darling. She found Grandma's flowers a bit too tempting. I was sitting back with my Aunt Laurie observing her looking over her shoulder to see if anyone was watching. We could hardly contain our giggles as she plucked a few petals here and a flower there, all the while completely oblivious to Laurie and me. We knew Grandma would help her pick flowers if she could so we found nothing wrong with letting her proceed. If I had my camera, I would have totally blown the pact I have with Jill. I wouldn't have taken Grandma's picture, but that little girl picking flowers from funeral bouquets? Absolutely. Pure joy.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Saying Goodbye

It wasn't easy to say goodbye, far more difficult than I anticipated. She was pretty amazing, the way she loved all of us. We are a diverse group, to say the least and she found qualities in each one of us she adored and bragged about to the others. She always had the latest news about each of our families and made sure we all knew how much she enjoyed us.

My cousin A.J spoke at the funeral. He said looking at the photos around the room made him wish we could all go back to one of the happy days of our childhood when life was simple. The days of cousins running around the farm, enjoying a little too much freedom and each other. Jeremy, Joel, A.J, Theresa, Mike and I were all around the same age and always looked forward to those visits. He remembered sitting around Grandma's table during one of those days and noting tears in Grandma's eyes as she looked around at all the chaos our gatherings created. Looking back, he realized they were tears of joy. She loved her family. 

We lost Jeremy ten years ago. I am sure they are still sipping coffee and catching up in heaven. That reunion had to be one of the sweetest. And Grandpa, he's probably sitting back with a grin on his face as he takes it all in. He adored her. I miss them all. Like A.J, I wish we could have one more carefree day of childhood to really appreciate the simplicity of those days. One more day to hang on a little longer to a hug or listen to another story. Saying goodbye was not easy even though I know she was ready for the reunion in heaven.