Category Archives: Magical Memories

This is new

Remember the show Mad about You? We loved that show!

Paul and Jamie were newlyweds. We were newlyweds.

Paul and Jamie had a dog. We had a dog.

Paul and Jamie had a slanty floor in one part of their apartment. We had a slanty floor in one part of our apartment.

Jamie went back to school. I went back to school.

Paul and Jamie had British neighbors. We bought a house and had a British neighbor.

Paul and Jamie had a baby. We had a baby.

We used to laugh so hard at their life because we could relate so well to it.

Time froze for Paul and Jamie when the show went off the air. We kept moving forward. But every now and then, something will remind us of them.

Like the time they walked in and found Murray, their dog, standing on the dining table. Paul looked at Murray and said, “This is new.” and just kept walking.

This is new.

Earlier this week, I walked into the dining room and saw this. To which I said, “This is new.” and just kept walking—to get the camera.

This is new.

This is new.

Well, Michael and I thought it was funny

Sarah is 2 1/2 years old. The youngest of four children. As an only child, I’m not so familiar with birth-order roles. I expected her to be a baby longer. She has so many people to do things for her, I thought she would just go along letting everyone do for her.

Well, I’ve been wrong before.

She is the most independent of all my children. I think her mantra, if she knew what that was, would be, “No child left behind!” If the older kids are doing it, so is she!

Many many posts could be written about her adventures and hijinks. I’ll save those stories for another day. Today is Friday, so it’s time for Friday Funnies.

One of the areas that Sarah shows her independence is in diaper changing. When she wants it changed, sometimes she comes and tells me, but she often just takes off her pants, then her diaper, gets a wipe and brings me a clean diaper. (Yes, I think she’s ready to be potty trained. I simply haven’t gotten around to it yet.)

Ok…so on to the funny.

Last night she went in her bedroom and pooped. Instead of coming and asking to be changed, she went into her brothers’ bedroom, removed her pants–and, you guessed it, the diaper. Little round turds were flung all over the floor of her brothers’ room!

The boys found that absolutely disgusting!

Michael and I just laughed.

Yes! Yes! I’ll help! I mean, sure, I’ll drop by if I have time…

Warning: photos in this post may not be for the faint of heart. Pun intended.

One of my favorite things to do is to volunteer at my kids’ school. If parents are invited, I’m there!

I love being able to observe them in their school setting–learning, interacting with their friends and teachers. It’s just so much fun!

And they love having me come in. That hour, once a week, quietly reinforces to them that I am there, I care, I’m interested. (Sure there are other ways to reinforce that, so if you are not a parent that volunteers at school, don’t think I’m ragging on you, because I’m not.)

As they get older, the teachers start weaning us off of our children. By third or fourth grade, the kids start planning their own parties, we do things for the teacher, rather than work with the kids. By fifth grade, there really are no classroom volunteers. And by sixth grade, forget it! They don’t even have parties anymore. Instead the kids start taking on leadership roles in the school–at Halloween, for example, they host a carnival for the rest of the grades.

I remember walking down to visit my oldest (a sixth grader) at the end of the day on Halloween party day. He wasn’t there. He was in gym class. His stuff was all packed up for the day. I walked in, probably looking very lost, and spoke to the teacher for a moment. Then walked to his desk where his costume, backpack and coat were all gathered and waiting for him. I said (lamely, I’m sure), “I’ll just take his costume with me so he doesn’t have to deal with it on the bus.”

I recognized myself for what I really was in that moment: a parent desperately wanting to feel like her baby still needed her.

It’s good the teachers start weaning us in third grade. It takes a long time!

A few weeks ago, sixth grade parents were invited to come in and help during science class!

What?

You need me?

Absolutely!

I’ll be there!

What? What did you say we’d be doing? Dissecting. Cow. Hearts?

Um. Yeah. Great. You can count on me.

Today was the day! It was actually supposed to be on Valentine Party Day. Get it? Hearts…Valentine’s Day…but it was delayed due to snow days.

And so I went. It wasn’t as gross as I thought it would be. I think my son would say the opposite.

crop for blog 2

crop for blog 3

crop for blogIn fact, he had this to say–“It was disgusting, but a lot of fun! My favorite part was when we cut open the heart along the septum in the middle.

I also liked messing around cutting open different parts to see what’s inside. My least favorite part was pumping air through the artery. It was gross.

I was surprised at how much blood there was.

I’m not sure if I would ever want to do it again.”

He may not be sure if he’ll ever do it again, but I am! I have three more kids to get through the sixth grade, and by golly, if they need me, I’ll be there!

You’d think we were going to the spa

If there was one thing I hated as a child, it was going to the dentist. His name was Dr. Kennedy. He was old (well, he probably wasn’t but he seemed like it to me). He had shaky hands (so maybe he was old).

It was scary. It was painful.

During my early adult years, I didn’t have dental insurance. A friend’s daughter was going to dental hygienist school and needed guinea pigs patients. That was kind of cool. I got the works! All the work was well supervised by actual dentists and when I found a regular dentist, all the records, x-rays, molds were transferred there. For me, it took away some of the fear that I had.

Fast forward twenty years. I’m taking my children to the dentist. Actually, we go to the same office my husband went to as a kid. His dentist has since retired, but Dr. Joe is there practicing ‘the art of painless dentistry,’ as the sign in his lobby states.

They love it!

Today, my daughter (6 years old) and I went. She got raspberry toothpaste (last time it was chocolate!) and a bubblegum flavored fluoride treatment. She’s so comfortable there, she just leans back and relaxes–as though she’s waiting for her massage rather than her teeth cleaning.

Last time we were there, she asked the hygienist so many questions that she sent her home with little mirrors, a mask, gloves, some extra toothbrushes, etc., so she could “play” dentist.

She's not pretending, she's practicing!

She's not pretending, she's practicing!

Later, when we played, she corrected me and told me she wasn’t playing, she was practicing because she was going to be a dentist someday. I can think of worse careers for her…

(and, please, no comments about my big mouth :) )

My little party planner

I just love to throw kids parties! Birthday, Halloween, Christmas, tea parties…FUN! FUN! FUN!

I have never done a Valentine’s party.

Last week during our snow days, Leah decided to plan one. The kids will sometimes set up a club, store, game room, dance party, etc., in their bedrooms and the rest of the family attends. I figured that’s what she was doing. Actually, she invited several friends from school. Unfortunately, the inviting was one of those things where first graders make all the plans but the parents aren’t really in sync…nobody knows a time or place…

When I broke the news to her that her friends were not likely to come, she was heartbroken. I promised that the entire family would participate and that helped a little. One of her friends actually did come over for awhile in the evening (only because her mom was here to pick up Girl Scout cookies, but she didn’t care why) and that helped a lot.

After her friend left, she asked if we could have the party. Our 11 year old son had a friend over and the boys were playing. I asked (ok, insisted on) their involvement for a mere 5 minutes. They all went along with it enthusiastically, staying for another activity even after I told them they could leave.

I have to say, she did an amazing job planning and executing this party!

She planned games, activities and snacks:

Pin the Heart on the Donkey–She drew and cut out a donkey and several hearts. She taped them all to the wall in her bedroom.

Heart Potato–She used a heart shaped pillow and sang a song for the music while we sat in a circle and passed the heart.100_2708

Valentine Storytime–She spread out her heart blanket on the floor and read Clifford’s First Valentine’s Day to us.

Snacks–She baked cookies yesterday (Pillsbury Simply Cookies ready made chocolate chip cookie dough dressed up with pink sprinkles prior to baking).

She even had heart stickers and drawings she had made as prizes for the games.

A perfect little party completely planned by a six year old!

She did her mama proud!

Not so sure she gets it

100_6594My daughter, Leah, is 6 years old and lives life with a smile on her face and a skip in her step. But sometimes I wonder about her.

Last Sunday night, we watched SuperBowl XLIV: New Orleans Saints vs. Indianapolis Colts. She was in the room but paying no attention whatsoever to the game. About half way through, she looked at the tv and exclaimed, “I’m cheering for Michigan!”

We live in Michigan, so at least there’s that.

On the other hand, I think she really does get it.

Sometime when she was about three she picked up a book and looked at the title. She showed it to me and said, “Mommy, the letters are all mixed up.” It was the first time she recognized letters making up words instead of just being part of the alphabet.

And sometime not too long after that, she was looking at a book and started to cry. When I asked her why she said it was  because she didn’t know what the words said.

When she was four we were going to attend a preschool program at the library. It was free, but I wasn’t sure if we had to register or not. So earlier in the morning, I told her I was going to call the library to see if we needed to register. She replied, “You mean call a person at the library or call the library that can’t talk?”

Around that same time, she asked me why pants were called a pair when it was only one thing.

So maybe she doesn’t get football.

But I think she gets the rest.

The obligatory ‘fun in the snow’ wintertime post

It’s almost mid-February. We live in Michigan. It’s supposed to be cold and we’re supposed to get snow.

While it has been cold here, we have dodged snow bullet after snow bullet this season. We’ve empathized with (ok, laughed at) our friends and family from places like North Carolina who were getting dumped on while we escaped with only a dusting.

Last week, when the nation’s capital was covered in a record snowfall, we only got a couple inches. Normally, even a couple inches would sour my mood, especially this late in the season. But I found myself feeling a little left out.

We haven’t had a snowball fight.

We haven’t built a snowman.

We haven’t gotten any pictures of our 2 year old really playing in the snow.

We haven’t had any snow days.

We’re gettin’ it now! About 5 inches so far and another 4-6 to come tonight. That still pales in comparison to what some areas of the country saw last week.

We got our snow day (and I think we’ll get one tomorrow, too).

We got the pictures of the two year old.

She made snow angels, was pulled on the sled, crawled around in it and even ate it. As she stepped her first booted foot into it, she exclaimed, “Oh, gee!”

"Oh, Gee!"

"Oh, Gee!"

Do I have to share this with him?

Do I have to share this with him?

This is hard to walk in!

This is hard to walk in!

This is YUMMY!

This is YUMMY!

The kids shoveled extra snow onto the steps to make a sledding hill. (Hey, we live in the flat midwest. You learn to improvise.)

100_2672Wheeee! See the video!

The dog thought it snowed just for her, she ran, she jumped, she ate it, too.

Woof!

Woof!

It’s not good for packing so no snowball fights or snowmen.

Just good family fun. And exercise. Oy! Pulling that sled and trying to run in the snow.

Faster, Dad!

Faster, Dad!

Ok. We got it. We had fun. I’m done now.

Is someone gonna pull me on this thing or what?

Is someone gonna pull me on this thing or what?

Bring on spring!

Diapers are my life.

I have four children. The oldest is 11 years, 5 months and 26 days old. My youngest is 2 1/2. For all but about six months of that 11 years, 5 months and 26 days, I’ve been changing diapers. Diapers are my life. This Baby Blues Cartoon could be about my life.

Even now, as I’m nearing what is likely the last few months of diaper duty for my youngest (and last) child, the hormones, dating, curfews, driving, car insurance rates and college tuitions for my first child are beginning to creep in slowly or loom in the not-too-distant future.

I’ve made it through the diapers. Lord, help me make it through the rest!

Stolen Moments

Although I describe myself as a stay-at-home mom, I substitute teach once in awhile. Several blog posts could be written about those adventures, but we’ll save that for another day.

Today, I subbed in the classroom next to my third grade son’s room. Our lunch hours overlapped and we took the opportunity to have lunch together. We sat at a couple student desks in my classroom, eating and talking about our day so far.

Just the two of us. No distractions.noah and me cropped for blog

When we finished we went down to the office and bought some special candy bars that were on sale there. Then back to the classroom to share this little secret treat (secret because the rest of the family wasn’t going to get one, hee-hee).

When it was time for him to go back to class and for me to start teaching again, we hugged and wished each other a good afternoon.

What we talked about wasn’t earth-shattering. In fact, just a few short hours later, I remember very little of our conversation. But I think both of us will remember our stolen moment, when it was:

just the two of us.  No distractions,

for a long time.