Friday, August 31, 2012

Summing up

Whew! So glad this first week of Kindergarten and Mike starting back to school is over. I think we are all exhausted. Let me just say that waking up to an alarm clock is not my most favorite thing in the world. Also, having pre made pancake, waffle and biscuit mixes in the freezer totally saved me at breakfast time this week. I just didn't have to think that hard about how to feed everyone without using a bunch of processed stuff that we're trying to avoid right now. We are all looking forward to the three day weekend coming up!

I was looking back at some summer picture and realized I never finished documenting our adventures! I know! How exciting! This last one was one of my favorites. Amy and I took our kids out to Wimberley to Blue Hole. It's basically just a swimming hole. But it is so beautiful and peaceful. We loved it! We will definitely make this a summer trip from now on. The water is a little on the cold side so we left when the kids lips started turning blue.

Last but not least, my parents were able to make a quick drip down to see us right before school started. We always love having them here and the kids are both already asking me when we can go see MeMaw and PePaw again. Emma Mae just loves her MeMaw.

And I'm pretty sure that Jake would trade us all in for PePaw any day of the week. They had a great time playing pirates this trip. Emma Mae and I start back to school next week so I feel like summer is finally over. Now if only the summer weather would leave us too. I'm ready for cool, crisp air and the smell of apples and pumpkin baking in the house. And a little football. Can't wait!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

More on Kinder

I hope to be able to stop posting about Jake entering Kindergarten soon. I hope to, but I'm not gonna promise anything. This is sort of a life consuming event I'm discovering. I forgot to mention the best thing about dropping him off on Monday. He let me hold his hand until we got inside the building. Then he dropped it and strode ever so confidently to his classroom with the rest of us tagging behind. He went right into that classroom (he was the third kid there), dropped his backpack on the floor and said very cheerfully "Hi, Mrs. Ware!" I could tell she was pleasantly surprised. She showed him where to put his backpack and lunchbox and then he found his desk and sat down to see what was in his pencil box. Then Mike made me leave. I really wanted to hang around a bit and make sure Jake was okay and see if the teacher had any words for the parents. But my hubby looked at me and said "time to cut the strings mama" and made me leave. Looking back, I think it was probably for the best because I didn't have time to work up an ugly cry or even a pretty cry. I didn't have time to cry at all. And the day was supposed to be about Jake and not about me right?

The second day of school I had the brilliant idea for all of us to go up to the school and have lunch with little man. So we did. Jake didn't know we were coming so he was so surprised and happy to see us. Lunch went well. I tried to introduce him to some of his little classmates because he said he didn't know anyone's name yet. He said he played by himself because there are so many kids there that it is just "too confusing." Well, of course mama bear has to try to fix that. When will I learn? I asked the three cute little girls sitting closest to us what their names were and then I said "hey! do you know Jake?" And they were all like "yes." And I was all "okay! hey Jake this is so and so and so and so!" And he was all "okay." He could care less what their names are. He just wanted to eat his pirate booty. Someday I'm going to learn how to let them make their own way and butt out of their lives. But it probably won't happen any time soon. I still have Emma Mae to humiliate on her second day of Kinder.

Well, all good lunch times must come to an end. We got up to leave and I gave Jake a hug and told him to have a good day. Then we started walking away. I happened to look back at him and saw him watching us with just the saddest look on his face. So I smiled really big and gave him a thumbs up and left. At pick up time he climbed into the car and we had our daily "what did you do today?" conversation. He told me he had a good day but he cried two times. The first was when we left after lunch. I felt so bad! The second was when his teacher told him they were halfway through the day and one of his classmates said no, we're not! He said that made him sad because he really needed to be halfway done with the day. So I gave him some great advice and told him from now on to only listen to his teacher. Those other kids don't know what they are talking about.

Also, I had my ugly cry at home later on the second day when he told me he wanted me to come eat lunch with him every day so he wouldn't miss me so much. Then he hugged me. Big sobbing cry but it only lasted for three seconds so hey, not that bad.

I'm hoping day three went better for him. I hope he didn't miss us as much as I missed him. I'm not gonna lie. It just feels like something's missing when he's not home every day! Although Emma Mae and I are having some good girl time. Girl likes to shop. I'm gonna have to get another job to support the habit. Here she is in Jake's class the first day of school. Let's end this with a little cuteness!

Monday, August 27, 2012

1st Day!

Jake was a little bit excited to go to Kindergarten this morning. And you know what? I was excited for him. I would have been more excited if I had gotten more than two hours of sleep last night but that's okay. I kept waking up thinking "is it time yet?" We did learn that we're gonna have to wake up earlier the rest of the week. It was a little stressful getting everyone to eat their chocolate chip pancakes and get dressed and take pictures and then get out the door. He wants to ride the bus next week and I'm thinking that may be a good plan.

On Saturday, Jake asked me if I would make him some apple dumplins. So I told him that I would make them and anything else he wanted on Sunday because we were going to have a special going to Kindergarten meal. So I asked him what he wanted for the main course and he said "how about lobster?" Because we eat so much lobster over here. Instead we got him a cheese pizza. And had apple dumplins for dessert. I took the kids for one last swim of the summer and our evening was really quite pleasant. I finally got both kids in bed at 8:15 and thought they would be worn out. However, Jake was just too excited to sleep. His teacher had even give the kids some "magic confetti" that was supposed to help them sleep so they would be well rested for the first day of school. Well around about 8:45 I hear him calling "mama!" So I said "yes baby?" He said "I can't sleep. I need you!" Now any other night this might have exasperated me a little bit. But last night I was all "What? You still need me? I'm on my way!" When I got in his room he was holding that package of magic confetti and he said very sadly "mama, I think this confetti is just regular. I'm still awake." So I told him sometimes it takes awhile for magic stuff to work. Then I got to spend the next fifteen minutes rubbing his back until he fell asleep. So sweet. Of course tonight the child better fall asleep already. Mama's tired.

After we dropped him off, Emma Mae and I met my friend Leslie at Chick fil A for breakfast. Leslie thought I might need a little consoling and she was right. It was nice to have someone distract me for awhile. After breakfast Emma and I went to Target for a little retail therapy. First stop, Starbucks. Em wanted to get a cake pop for herself and one for Jake in case he was hungry when he got home. I thought that was so sweet. Well, I was so tired today after lunch that I laid down in the playroom with her and she told me to close my eyes and she would take care of me. So I did and I fell asleep. When I woke up this is what was left of Jake's special cake pop. It seems Em got hungry while I was napping. She ate off all the frosting and left some of the cake for Jake. He really appreciated it.

He was so excited to see us at pickup and Mrs. Ware told me what a sweet boy he is. He said he had a very long great day which means I guess I will be taking him back tomorrow. I just hope he is as excited in the morning as he was today.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Pre Kinder jitters

As I sit here at my desk I am filled with anxiety and a really horrible feeling in the bottom of my stomach. You see tomorrow is our first born's first day of Kindergarten. Dramatic pause. Deep breaths.

This whole thing has really taken me by surprise. I never thought I would be one of "those" moms. You know the kind who cry and snivel and make a scene dropping their kids off for the first day of school? I mean really. This is a happy day! I always thought I would be the one with the big smile just cheering the child on to this new life adventure. And then I could go home and clean the house already.

But, I'm afraid I'm gonna cry. Big, ugly cry. And either scare Jake or embarrass the pants off of him. Is he too young to be embarrassed of me yet? Thankfully, today in church I was gently reminded that not everything is about me.

 And although I gave birth to this handsome boy child, his life is not my life. The song they played in church today says "turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace." It's time to dim my things on earth a little bit. It's time to pray that God will remove "me" from tomorrow morning and fill it up with Him and with Jake.

Speaking of Jake, he is sooo excited for Kindergarten. And he is ready to go. We went to the school Thursday night and met his teacher, Mrs. Ware. I had already heard from a neighbor of ours what a wonderful teacher Mrs. Ware is. She seems really nice and she is very pretty. I'm sure Jake will be crushing on her in no time. She also has three little boys of her own so I'm guessing she knows the mind of a boy. I will start praying for her now. I know having 22 five year olds coming to school for the first time is going to be hard on her. It's going to be hard on everyone. Not only will she have to deal with the kids, but she will have to deal with their mama's. I think all Kindergarten teachers should be required to have kids and send at least one away to kindergarten before they can teach that grade. It's the only way to understand the heart of that particular mama.

Dear Mrs. Ware,
I'm giving my boy over to you for seven hours a day five days a week. He will be spending more time with you and his classmates than he spends with me now. He's so little. Please be kind. But firm. You're gonna need to be firm. Here are some things you need to know about Jake:

1.) He's a dreamer. He spends more time in his imagination than he does in reality. I like this about him. Please don't kill it.

2.) He's loves animals-especially ocean animals. Please foster his interests.

3.) He loses focus easily unless actively engaged in something he enjoys. Please give him tools to do better.

4.) He is a superhero. Please help him to put away his super powers while at school but to know deep down that he still has them. Don't cut those spider webs just yet.

5.) He is sensitive. He may cry over something that nobody else would cry over. Please give him a quick hug and tell him to buck up.

6.) He is a leader. Watch how kids will follow him. Encourage that without giving him a big head.

7.) He is super fast. I'm sorry if he runs through the classroom with his new super fast tennis shoes on. Please make him stop, but maybe tell him that he'll probably be an Olympic runner someday.

8.) He is enthusiastic. Please teach him patience and humility without quenching his enthusiasm.

9.) He still says the "w" sound for most "l"s and "r"s. Please help him to learn to speak correctly even though a part of my mommy heart will break when he stops saying "I wuv you." And also, if anyone makes fun of the way he talks, go ahead and smack them upside the head.

10.) He is my heart. I don't know how it's going to feel to walk around every day with my heart outside of my body. Please protect him. But help him become independent. On the days you can't love him ask me why I love him. I'll fill you in on his good qualities. Please equip him to move on in life to first grade. I'll do my part here if you do your part there. Let's be partners. Oh and try to do the same for the other 21 kids in your class. (You seriously don't make enough money.)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Happenings and whereabouts

Mike's birthday was Friday. So I made him a poached egg. He turned 31. Pretty soon he'll be in his forties just like me! Wait a minute. When he's forty I'll be in my fifties. On second thought, let's not think about that. Maybe I'll stop having birthdays for awhile.

Later on he put on a shirt. So I baked him a cake. Three layers. Yum.

Earlier in the week we went on our last summer adventure. We drove to San Antonio to stay overnight at the Hyatt Hill Country. It was heavenly. I got a decent room rate so I was happy. The kids discovered they like resort life so they were happy. Emma Mae told me she wanted to live there forever and Jake told me every time we floated down the lazy river that this was the good life. I had to remind them both several times not to get too used to living that way.
We can't go to San Antonio without a trip to Sea World. Got to get the most out of those season passes!

Jake loved the sea lion show. This was a great way to finish off our summer! Now I'm going to go hide in my closet and eat some ice cream while I try to pretend that my first born child isn't really going to start Kindergarten in eight days. Wish me luck!

Monday, August 13, 2012

We're almost done with the summer adventures!

1.) Mike planned our weekly adventure last week and it was so much fun! Too bad we didn't take the camera to document things. We drove to San Marcos where he goes to school and met a buddy of his at the river. Then we spent about thirty minutes blowing up some tubes by mouth because our pump wouldn't work. After some mild hyperventilation we were ready to float the river! Jake went in his own tube this year and looked like such a big boy. Emma Mae rode with me in my tube. On my stomach the most of the way. Talk about an ab workout! My abs are still sore. Jake even went down a little waterfall with Mike at the end and jumped into the river from a rope swing. Good times.

2.) These little guys are my latest obsession. Little doves. They live in our front flower bed. They've been there for four or five days now. I have to physically restrain myself from setting out bird food and water for them. They already sit on our stoop while I water the flowers and listen to me talk. No fear. Until Jake and Emma Mae come running and screaming out of the house. Then my little birds find their wings and fly. I fear I'm going to be distraught when they leave me. Stay little birds, stay.

3.) It's funny that I've grown so attached to these birds. Because I'm really not a huge bird fan. Beady little eyes and all. Also, a bird accosted me at Petco last week. I went in to buy some crickets for the bearded dragon and the next thing I knew the sales clerk was looking up in fear with her hand clasped over her mouth. I was vaguely aware of a rustling sound above my head somewhere and then I felt claws spinning around in my hair trying to grip my head. Or tear it off , I'm not sure which. Anyway, I started screaming bloody murder and flailing my arms all over the place. When the dust settled, my hair was a mess and there was a green parrot or something sitting on the store floor. His owner came over and picked it up and started tickling its stomach. Didn't even apologize to me. He just told me that they had just had the birds wings clipped that morning. And I told him that I didn't think it worked very well. I left the store and ran to my car in case more birds appeared out of nowhere in attack mode. But I know my sweet little doves would never do anything like that, so they can stay.

4.) We're leaving for our final summer adventure tomorrow! Aren't you glad you won't have to read about any more adventures for awhile?! This is an over nighter and promises to be the best one yet. Can't wait!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Dynamic Duo

Don't get me wrong. We love Emma Mae. But nobody could deny that she is going through a rough patch right now. And when Emma goes through a rough patch, everybody goes through a rough patch. Yesterday morning she woke me up and told me she was hungry. So we walked into the kitchen and I told her she could either have waffles or biscuits. I asked her which one she wanted. And she said muffins. I said we don't have muffins. Would you like a waffle or a biscuit? And she started crying as if her best friend just ate the last muffin in front of her without offering her any. So I told her to go to her room until she could be more agreeable. And she just looked at me with these big tears rolling down her face and said "but mama! i just can't agree to waffles or biscuits!" And I really think that is her biggest struggle right now. She just can't agree to any idea, thought or feeling that doesn't originate in her own head right now.

Yesterday afternoon Jake came up to me and said "mama, I have some bad news for you." I asked him what it was. He said to follow him because he had to show me what my daughter had done. So we went to the kids bathroom together. Low and behold, there was all manner of red and yellow paint smeared all over the bathroom cabinet. Jake put his hands on his hips and said "Just Look!" So I got a very serious look on my face and said "well. what are we going to do with her?" And Jake said "well, i want to keep her." We established that she couldn't be banned from the family for this offense. I think he was really worried that I was going to put her out of the house. He looked at me and said "mama, I guess I'm going to just have to teach her how to do all the right things." And I told him that was a fab idea. I asked him how he was going to achieve his goal. And he said he would just have to follow her around all the time watching her. So that's what he did the rest of the day. We'll see how long that lasts.

They did end up playing all afternoon together. At one point, Jake came and found me and again informed me that he had some more bad news. Seems they had taken Striper the hamster into Emma's room to play "family." Then they put the hamster in his little plastic ball to roll around but they couldn't find the lid to the ball. So of course the hamster ran out of the ball. Then Jake caught him and put him in Emma's toy tree house. With no walls or anything. And he escaped the treehouse and was running around loose under Emma's bed. I had to question Jake. I asked him if he thought that Striper was going to stay in the tree house when he put him in there. And Jake said "well, yes. but then he didn't so I don't think so." Wha? Of course he told me about this ordeal while Mike and I were cooking dinner so here I am running back and forth between the grill and Em's bed trying to cook delicious meat and capture furry rodent at the same time. There should be an Olympic medal for multi tasking. I would so be in the running for at least a bronze.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Amarillo by evening

Last week I cowboyed up and took the kids on a road trip to Amarillo by myself. They did really well on the long car ride. I was in great conflict over this trip. I really wanted to see my parents. I really wanted the kids to see their grandparents. But I fully remembered our last two trips to the big A. They were not good. No sleep. Sick Jake. Whining, crying, screaming Emma Mae.

This trip was better. We kept the kids pretty busy with outings to the Discovery Science Center and the Zoo. I took Jake to see "Brave" one afternoon. That was delightful. Emma Mae did pretty well up until the last day. What is it with age 2 and 3? She just has so many uncontrollable outbursts. The first happened our last day there at Toys R Us. My dad wanted to take the kids to buy them a toy. (Well, I'm pretty sure the kids hit him up for a new toy the first day we got there. They have such good manners!) Emma found a stuffed lion that she wanted. The trouble was that she didn't want to give it up to the cashier to let her ring up the price. So instead she threw a fit. Right there in the check out line of the toy store. I had to pry the lion cub out of her tender little clutched up fingers. I handed it to the cashier and she was all "you still want to get it for her?" And I was all "yes." Look. I know I should have marched that girl out of the store without the toy. But I am worn down from all the show downs so I just threw it at the cashier and told her to ring it up while my dad paid for the toys and I carried Emma out of the store. Total parent fail.

Emma rewarded me later by having a complete melt down at the dinner table. It started with her telling me she didn't want to eat her corn. It ended up with her in our bedroom screaming and hollering while the rest of us started dinner without her. I told her she could join us when she felt happy again. My mom tried to rescue her a couple times. I really don't remember how she ended up rejoining us but it turns out that she didn't like the color choice of the corn holders on her cob. They were blue and she wanted yellow or pink. Totally understandable. I always flip out and get hysterical if my corn cob holders are the wrong color.

Anyhow, I'm going to go ahead and declare this trip a success because there was more sleeping and less crying than normal. But poor Jake did get sick again. I think he's allergic to Amarillo. And as a major plus my dad had time to teach me how to can apricot jam and he taught me how to play three chords on the guitar. (sort of). Also, I got in two trips to Taco Villa and one to Blue Sky. Beautiful.

I love that they get to play with my old Fisher Price toys. This train set used to make me sooo happy!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Daily observations

Sometimes I walk into a room in the house and think "hmm, I wonder what that's all about." Today it was an oven mitt on the drawer of Emma Mae's dresser. What motivated her to put it there? Was the drawer hot to the touch?

So then I decided to take a peek at Jake's dresser. First of all, he climbed to the top of his closet the other day and scored some old Lightning McQueen stickers we stuck up there when we decorated his room three years ago. Then he put them on his dresser drawers to make it look "cool." He couldn't really explain the meaning of the missing knobs on the right side of the drawers. Something about needing to see how they worked. So he took them off. I sure wish he could #1.) find them again and then #2.) figure out how to put them back on. I'm curious about why he only took off the right hand ones.  I think it will remain a mystery because I just can't seem to crack the mind of the five year old.