{soap for sale}

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Every year at the boy's school the 2nd graders make items to sell at the annual economics fair. All the money earned goes to a charity. Its neat to see all the fun things kids make to sell. Britt followed in T's footsteps and made Lego soap. Once again they sold out! Britt was eager to make his rounds & spend his own money on his classmate's creations. Lots of our little friends from primary & the neighborhood were selling magnets & jewelry, played...all kinds of things. We saw Madds & T too. I love seeing my kids in the middle of the school day. 


Thursday, December 18, 2014

I have been really down lately. I have 5 wonderful children, but they are growing and rather quickly. I see Mom's at the bakery or market with 2 sometimes 3 little pre school ages children. They are young & glowing with the excitement of the start of their young family. I see them with little babies in carriers & my stomach tightens. That was me. I just had babies. Little children in my care. Now I have a ten year old. I am not that young Mom. I mean I am young. Young to have a 10 year old compared to many, but I am not a new mom anymore. I used to think I was so excited to have all my children in school. I thought i would want to go to the gym more, nap, have lunches with friends. But its coming at me like a freight train & I cannot run fast enough away from it. The thought of Cooper starting pre school in 2 years is devastating. Those naps and workouts that i thought sounded so appealing no longer seem desirable. So what does that mean? Do I want to fill this nest with more babies to keep me young & with pre school aged babies? I do not know. I am in such a weird chapter of my life. It feels like I am way in over my head. You know that song from Annie where miss hanging is singing "little girls, little girls, everywhere i turn there is little..." I swear I feel that way with boys most days. Swimming in dirty footprints & school papers. Not to mention the emails from certain kindergarten teachers who I swear is out for my blood! Its a lot to deal with, but I still have that yearning for babies. & so I juggle between drowning in children & wanting more children. It flip flops from moment to moment. Lots of my friends from high school are now just starting to have their 1st or 2nd babies, my social media is birth announcement after birth announcement. How am I supposed to fight off the baby hunger with all these sweet fresh to the world faces in my feed? But like I said...I have a 10 year old now. TEN. Its crazy! When he was born I was clueless & weepy & not sure I would ever really feel connected to this new squishy faced baby, but it happened. At 3am mid nursing session with princess diaries or elf or sense and sensibility...something...playing quietly on the TV...I fell head over heels in love with his rose cheeks, his blue eyes & his sweet sweet disposition. He loved to be held & so I did just that..I held him. Every moment of every day. He slept in the bjorn on my chest while i did classwork or I washed dishes, cooked dinners. I walked him everywhere. I was so proud to be a mom & so I took him out in public every second I could so everyone else could ohh & ahhh over his smiles & belly laughs. & They did. Everyone commented on MY baby! I loved it. He loved it. That time in my life was magical. It was often just me & Tre. We were a pair. Ten comes with its joys. Tre is so helpful & smart  brilliant, he is a leader in his school with student council & he was invited to be on the math team, & choir & fitness club & goes on. There is a wall at his school that says "HO Elementary leaders." Tre is in 4 out of the 6 pictures. The only reason he isn't in the others is because he is not yet a 5th grader. Ten is also tricky it means lots of "talks" about "changes" & no one told me how sensitive 10 year old boys can be! yikes. But He is worth all of it! I cannot imagine a better son to make me a mother & help me learn along the way. He is a dream of a child. Everyone refers to him as our angel. They are not wrong.

For T's 10th birthday Rod & I really wanted to do something special for him. The last 3 birthdays have been pretty lame. He was sick with the flu last year & the 2 previous years Rod was gone (okay so its been 4 years that Rod has been gone) & we didn't do much of anything. This year we told T wad a surprise planned but that he wouldn't know till after school on the day of his birthday. We wrapped up 4 packages. each had a clue for him. for example one was 4 hats to the local NBA team, the next was a basketball, the next parking passes at the city's NBA arena. He was so excited when he put it all together & figured out I was taking him & his 3 best friends & a mom to keep me company & sane to a basketball game. We had a great time! We stopped at T's 2nd favorite burger place, the boys played a game their on a phone called "heads up" so funny. then we made it to the game & had a great time cheering & trying to get on camera. Tre has such good friends. They are all pretty amazing! I took pictures of the night on my phone because lugging a big camera to a game sounded not fun. Ill have to get those on here at some point, but for now these are the pictures from the day & the unwrapping of the clues. Also he loves cream cheese raspberry pie.

{getting the tree}

Monday, December 08, 2014

Saturday started early with a choir performance at the winter festival in our area of the city. Tre did a great job & had 1 of the only 2 speaking parts in the performance. The boy is so well rounded & diverse in his interests. It was nice having Rod home for the day. Its not long, but we will take whatever we can get these days. Its been months without him home. We watched santa arrive in a helicopter & ate mango snow cones, had a meltdown or two (the kids this time. not me.) We decided to find lunch at a local restaurant. Having my mom here makes everything better, and then add Rod in too! There were 3 adults vs 5 kids rather than the typical just me. It was nice. Since Rod was home only for the day we decided that after naps we needed to go get our real tree. We have a few faux trees up in the house already, but we have a love for the scent of the real tree & the hunt for a good one. Or at least we did love the hunt. Last year was magical. The sun was setting. The lights were strung up & gave a soft glow. the children went from tree to tree feeling and smelling each one. they held hands & were enjoying the moment. this time.... it was like crazy monkeys were climbing on everything, hitting each other with sticks. Let me stop a moment. It was not all the kids. Just Britt & Madds. but when they are "on" they are the equivalent of 100 kids. Each. So the search for the perfect tree became the search for any tree so we could just get the heck home! In the end we found a pretty tree. I prefer slightly odd, fat trees. I don't know what that says about me. We will wait to decorate it when Rod sneaks home again next weekend. The children are anxious, but not a one of us wants to do it without him here.

{full house}

Sunday, December 07, 2014

All this week I have been telling the children...only 1 more week to break. well come to find out there are actually two weeks & I am bummed. The week of thanksgiving break was so nice that I am anxious for more alarm clock free mornings & relaxing evenings. Thanksgiving is such a tease in that way. This thanksgiving had a lot of exciting build up. We hosted my parents, brother, sister in law & baby Norah and Rod was coming home for the holiday too. The house was going to be full & I was ready for every second of it. Except in my readiness I somewhere forgot that my children are just that, Children. They are busy, destructive, loud & sometimes in their moments of distress they are very overwhelming. I am used to it. Immune even, & to an extent I think my Mom & Dad are too. But, poor Brad & his little family! Norah joins right in & calls after the kids. Its a dream. But the look on Brads face when all mine are being not their best is equal parts hilarious & stressful. For one reason or another my children chose Thanksgiving day to be a good day to be crazy or grumpy. Everyone was feeling it so Rod, My Mom & I took all 6 kids to the neighborhood playground to play off some energy & soak in the beautiful weather. It did the trick. We all felt much more relaxed after our run through the field & trips down the slide. My favorite part of the dinner was my fathers prayer. I remember clearly my grandfather offering the holiday dinner prayers...actually all family dinners. There is something about having the head of the family speaking from the heart allowed, sharing their testimony in some way, speaking of gratitude & asking for blessings. Its comforting to me. other highlights were homemade pumpkin spice donuts & the Macy's day parade, making centerpieces with the boys, play dough, christmas songs, & the biggest high light was Cooper's 2nd birthday! I cannot even believe it! Its so strange not having a tiny baby as one turns 2. Cooper is hilarious! He speaks 5 word sentences & loves all things with wheels. He is such a riot! He has an opinion on his clothes & tells me he won't use a pink fork at meals. He is brilliant. He knows colors & some shapes. He makes me so happy. He loves to ride my foot up and downhill yelling "ready set go!" He rides his motorcycle in the house, jumps on the trampoline & asks for chocolate all the time. He acts like such a big boy in so many ways.  I wish everyone could have a few moments with this boy. His smile is infectious!

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