What Mother’s Know

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I Don’t Know

I don’t know how I do it (be a mother)
I don’t know how I manage
I don’t know how I find the strength
I don’t know how I live without sleep
I don’t know how I stay calm when the baby is screaming
I don’t know how I find time to use the bathroom
I don’t know how I do so many things while holding a baby in one arm: Eat, Make dinner, Wash the dishes, Mop the floor, Load washing machine, Fold laundry, Shop for groceries

I Do Know

I do know there is no other experience like being a parent
I do know I love kids smiles, laughs, burps, farts
I do know I love having a baby sleep in my arms
I do know each time I go through the process, as hard as it is, I would do it all again.

 

 

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Kids: Never a Quiet Moment

IMG_0781Why do kids make parents mad?
Why do they behave so bad?

Kids are kids they say, its true
It seems they make me crazy too

All the times they misbehave
It’s just attention that they crave

Attention good or bad they’ll take
From morning to night – I need a break!

At 5 in the morning they wake me
Only 6 hours sleep they need

What happened to all the naps in day
Those stages of sleep are far away

Each day they test me on another thing
My heart melts – did I hear them sing?

The ups and downs of parenthood
not every day is going to be good

Today is quiet as they watch cartoons
The silence will be broken again soon

Eat this bean, or maybe just grow it!

During the last few months I have eaten more vegetables and fruits, but I realized my kids were not doing the same.  The last few weeks I have tried to get my kids (aged 10 and 7) to eat a larger variety of foods. They need to learn that quesadillas and pizza are not the only food to eat. The bright spot in my food day occurs at dinner when the kids are given a new food to taste. A few weeks ago I tricked them by cutting up jicama and putting it in a bowl. I just said, “Try this.” They picked the white cubes from the bowl and ate away. Then they asked, “Is this an apple?”. Thinking it was a weird tasting apple was better than having them spit it out immediately or never try it all.

Some of the other food tastings were not as successful. Today’s food was green beans (also known as string beans). I thought beans were pretty benign. I was surprised when my youngest treated the food like a play toy instead of just biting into you. She pushed it around the plate eventually squishing and smashing it until little beans popped out. She said, “These look like lima beans?”. I was shocked she knew what lima beans were (happily shocked I might add). Eventually she put one of the tiny beans into her mouth. I can’t say she liked it, but she didn’t barf it back onto her plate.

Once my son saw the fun that his younger sister was having getting the beans opened, he grabbed another bean to see how many small beans he could find. Somehow the tasting had turned into an experience. No longer was this about food, it was about learning, experimenting and creativity. After splitting one of the green beans open, my son filled it with other foods from dinner to create his own bean sub. You have to give the kid points for creativity! We took some photos of his plated bean dish (like it was Iron Chef). We didn’t have any judges for the dish, but I promised I would write a blog about it.

How the evening ended was even more surprising. My son wanted to watch a video about growing green beans. We watched how to build a bean teepee as well as several instructional videos about how to prepare and grow beans. While my daughter grabbed the computer and began watching gymnastics videos, I realized my son had disappeared and the outside patio light was on. I couldn’t imagine what he could be doing outside in the dark. I found him outside carefully preparing soil for his beans. He had extracted some tiny beans and was planting them in a yogurt cup filled with seedling soil. Sometimes when you feed kids vegetables you just don’t know what is going to happen. In this case it seems we will be growing green beans. Maybe when you grow your own food, there is more interest in eating it. I just hope by the time the beans ripen there is someone besides me willing to eat them.

A 7-year-old Insomniac

Paige my little girl

She can’t go to sleep tonight

The moon must be full

One computer, two kids

One red Thinkpad for a family,
We have one computer but we need three.

The kids like games, I like Netflix
The noisy game music – it makes me sick!

So many electronic devices to cruise
Why a laptop everyone has to choose?

Tablet, Kindle, Droid we have,
but the old laptop is what they grab!

How am I to get anything done?
I can’t pay my bills or order from Amazon.

They say that laptops are going away
In my house it is the device to play!

With a bonus from work or with money from the sky
What can I see? More devices in my eye.

My laptop I bought for writing blogs
I’m resorting to paper, like an old ships log.

Today we time each person’s 30 minute turn
Don’t touch that timer, I got more time to burn!

Scheduling time to use an electronic device?
Instead we should all play Sorry! – that would be nice.

Less Mess, Not More

Yesterday morning I emerged from my bedroom after a nice relaxing shower, when I heard banging in the kitchen. I saw Paige in the hallway which meant only one other child could be in the kitchen and responsible for the racket. My first thought, ‘What is Tucker, doing in there?’. At 8-years-old I am well aware of the colossal damage he could inflict if he put his mind to it. Is he standing on the counter? Is he breaking dishes? Wait, I hear silverware clanging. Did he tie silverware to the ceiling fan? What could he possibly be doing?

As I entered the kitchen, the guilty party hid his face with his elbow and put his head down on the counter. I approached the sink and noticed something strange. There are no dirty dishes. Where did the dirty dishes go? For a moment I wondered if they have been thrown in the trash can. Then I heard a giggle from underneath the elbow.

“You put the dishes in the dishwasher, didn’t you?” I state matter-of-factly. Tucker lifts his face which now shows a wide grin with every tooth on display. At first he had been acting as if I was going to be angry about him about loading the dishwasher, now he seemed to think it was funny. He was playing a prank, only it seemed that I was getting all the laughs (or at least the rest). What single mom doesn’t appreciate a day of not having to clean up the dishes?

I told Tucker I really appreciated what he had done. Although on the inside I was wondering what he was going to ask in return for completing this ‘chore’. Another DS game? $10 to spend at Target, or merely a hug? There is no way of knowing what goes on in the brain of an 8-year old. For now I am just going to accept this generous gift of help around the house. With his pre-teen years just around the corner, it won’t be long before getting him to take out the trash will cost me $50.

Santa lives at the Mall?


My 5-year-old daughter explained to me yesterday that Santa lives at the Mall (something she learned at school). What will they teach them next? That the world is flat? There is a new alphabet? The Easter Bunny was trampled to death at the Walmart Black Friday Opening?

I believe Santa lives in the North Pole, although a Mall in Arizona would be preferable to shoveling off the walkway (and the sleigh) every morning before heading over to the toy-making workshop. I wondered where my daughter got the idea about Santa’s ‘home’, because we have seen Santa many different places (the Mall being only one of many). I had to remind her of the many places we have run into Santa (many of which were completely unplanned) and as I made a list I realized that kids really do need to watch out, because he is everywhere!

Santa ‘Hot Spots’
1) Dairy Farms (Alpenrose, Superstition) – I think he likes the free milk to go with his cookies!
2) Malls (Beverton, Chandler) – A little last minute shopping for Mrs. Clause? Maybe new shoes for those elves?
3) Any Corner USA – He usually stands there ringing a bell and asking for money for the Salvation Army.
4) Albertson’s Grocery Store – Santa has to eat of lot of food to maintain that belly, or maybe he needed to pick up snacks for the elves since they get grouchy with all of the December over-time.
5) Cool Cuts for Kids – Maybe his beard needed a trim?
6) Bass Pro Shop – I heard him asking for wax for his sleigh and some XXXL long underwear.
7) Parades – Sometimes if there isn’t enough snow Santa needs to hitch a ride. Why not on a Christmas float in a parade? Beats my 10 year old VW Golf.

Where have you seen Santa lately?