We’d just settled into our hotel room. All of us were very excited to be there. I’d put together a little mini “staycation” on the other side of town, marrying together free event tickets and a free hotel room stay (I’ve blogged before about checking into freebies – SO worth it!) Anyways, I’d started my usual routine of spraying EVERYTHING with Lysol, wiping countertops, etc. The hubby and kids already know what’s up, so they go watch TV until I’m done. I was in the bathroom doing my routine when my oldest came in. For a while he just stood and watched. I sprayed the soap dish (yes, the soap dish). “Mommy, do you spray everything?” Me: “Yes, everything.” Him: “Wow, you really like to clean up things. Except when we’re at home.” And with that, he was gone.
I didn’t know whether to laugh or be stung. I decided to laugh – basically I am a cleaning freak at the hotel, and I do my best to maintain cleanliness (and sanity) at home. Sometimes the two are not mutually conducive. But me being me, it caused me to think a little deeper. My son probably didn’t mean anything by his little comment, but it made me think about what I’m teaching/showing my boys. Am I being two-faced?
I’m probably over analyzing. Not like I ever do that (lol). But it did make me want to do my best to be consistent in every arena, knowing those little eyes are watching everything.
Here’s to my efforts to not being two faced in every arena – including keeping my house as clean as the hotel. LOLOL. Even I have to laugh at that one.
My youngest son is almost potty-trained! Now for those of you scoffing at that notion or thinking what’s the big deal, you try going head to head with an adorable yet strong-willed 3-year-old, who is quite happy to have you keep changing him and not go to the potty by himself, thank you very much. It’s not the easiest of endeavors, I assure you. You take him to the restroom, he doesn’t go, yet two minutes later he’s peeing on the floor. “I didn’t have to go then,” he asserts (hmm, okay). Or you try to change him to big boy underwear, and he pushes it off, asking for his pamper (well if you’re old enough to know the difference…) But I digress. We’ve fought the good fight, and we’re almost there. Not as soon as I would have liked, but thankful for progress.
That’s the way it is with kids. They have their own timelines. You can wish, hope, pray, beg and plead, but sometimes you just can’t rush them. People told me to stop rocking my oldest to sleep after a few months. I didn’t listen. I enjoyed every moment. Now, I did it probably longer than I should have – I think I stopped when he was 2? Anyways, we stopped, started laying him down to sleep by himself, and a few nights later, it was working. Same with my youngest. No need to hurry them … enjoy the moments … let them go at their own speed. I’ve decided to bask in the moments I’m getting. From what I hear from the parents of teens, these little kid moments are all too fleeting….
I was not having a good day. I’d had several unexpected, painful things thrown at me all at once, and this particular day, I wasn’t holding up very well. However, laundry still had to be washed and groceries still had to be purchased. My husband, ever mindful of making sure I’m not overloaded, asked me if I was sure I wanted to take the kids to the store. Although the boys were pretty rowdy and arguing back and forth, they assured me their behavior would be stellar at the store. They begged to go with me. I let them. And I’m so glad I did.
Kids have these amazing superpowers. They’re born with them, I guess. After behaving their worst and being the most uncooperative, the powers come shining through. I think God made them cute just for moments like this, lol. Having the boys give me smiles in the store, laugh at the most absurd things, even eating a free “kids cookie”, all brought smiles to my face. It was in those fleeting moments of joy and the ability to forget the unpleasantness, that I focused on the joy those little people bring to my life.
In honor of their good behavior at the store (praise the Lord), I’ve come up with a few great benefits to having kids:
– They make you laugh. Priceless. A merry heart really does do good like a medicine.
– They make you a better person. When you realize there are a precious pair of eyes watching – then emulating – your every move, it makes you more cognizant of your actions and words.
– They give you clarity on what’s important. It’s so much easier to make priorities with them – because they are the priority.
– They help you not to be wasteful or selfish. Again, the kids are the priority. Need I say more?
– They give you hope for the future. When you see their brilliance, their optimism, their complete innocence and wonder, it makes you so hopeful about what they can do – and even what you can do.
In honor of Throwback Thursday …
So were planning for my son’s birthday party and were considering having just boys. He vigorously objected. When I asked why, stating the name of a few girls who are his friends that he wanted to come. I knew all but one. He brushed over her name again. I let it slide. A few weeks later we were at a school event and he saw this same little girl. He started hiding behind me, being silly. I asked what was going on. He said he just gets this funny feeling when he sees her ….
The funny feeling.
Initially, I think it’s cute. Aw, he’s got a little crush and doesn’t even realize it. Then mom mode kicks in. He’s only 6. He might not know what that feeling is now, but soon enough, he will. When do “the talks” need to begin? How much do I need to find out about this girl… and on and on and on.
The funny feeling.
Ah, and so it begins…..
I have known two incredible fathers in my life. My dad taught me how to save money and invest; how to pinch a penny and make a dollar holler; how to be street wise and business savvy; how to balance wisdom and love; how to change a flat tire (which I had to do shortly after learning, on the side of the highway); how to be grateful for what we had; how to be timely and never ever be afraid of hard work. He loved me, protected me, and guided me; even when we butted heads and didn’t agree (I was just a wee bit headstrong back in the day, lol), he never gave up on me. I appreciate and love him dearly.
My husband shows me daily what it means to raise a Godly man. He raises our sons with love and patience, to be full of dignity and self-respect; to love and serve God with everything in them; to respect and honor their parents and listen diligently to their mother; to be happy and full of joy; to be grateful for life’s many blessings; and more intangible lessons than I can describe. I love my husband for who he is and for all he is to the boys and to our family. I am beyond grateful for him.
So thankful to God for the two blessings of these men in my life.
Happy Fathers’ Day.
My heart fell at news of the passing of Ruby Dee. She was beautiful and graceful, witty and intelligent, a trailblazer and an inspiration, an icon … and a legend. There are so many moments she’s allowed us to share with her over the years. She and her late husband, Ossie Davis, had a profound impact in entertainment, and in social activism. When you observe someone with that sort of spark, that selflessness, that ability to share themselves to make a difference for so many others, it is an amazing thing. What’s more amazing to me, however, is to know the high esteem she reserved for her family. As a mother, I was personally touched to see that out of all of her incredible accolades, her attempts to better humanity, to make us think and do better, she held in highest regard those closest to her. That lesson, in my opinion, when observing the richness of her life, is one of the most valuable things we can take away.
“The most important thing in my life is family. Not career, not anything else. Family.” — Ruby Dee
Rest in Peace.
I saw the end in sight. Two weeks (really a week and a half, but it felt longer lol). The time was winding down. I was enjoying it, truly. Time with my mother, fun with my boys. But their never-ending energy, constant excitement (seriously, how can they be excited all the time?!) and desires to play, play, play had worn me down.
The time had passed swiftly. A combination of all of the household upkeep and the household fun had completely occupied my time. I wanted the busyness to keep them (all of us) from missing Daddy. But as we headed towards Monday, I could feel my anticipation growing. Visions of sleeping in, and a break from bath-giving danced in my head. Sure I’d miss our nightly slumber parties and getting to kiss the boys’ adorable faces while they slept, but it was time for a trade-off.
Then … the sound I waited for. The garage door went up. The door opened. Keys jingled. Daddy was home! I’m free! I’m free! I mean, welcome back, honey. Lol.
The Calvary is in. Time for a nap.
I can’t say exactly when it happened. Sometime in the past seven years, I suppose. But I didn’t notice it until a few days ago. My oldest son accompanied me to the airport to drop off my mother after her visit. She uses a wheelchair, and we had luggage. I really thought he may kind of be in the way, but knew how much it meant to him to see Nana off, so I let him come. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
He was a gem … a true blessing. He helped pull the luggage, held doors, picked up things we dropped (I yelled at him to hurry not realizing what he was doing, and he didn’t complain). He walked expeditiously, took the security/shoes off inconveniences like a trooper, and remained stoic until Grandma’s last goodbye. I caught myself taking glimpses of him during that time. I marveled at his determination to assist, and help get us where we needed to go. His walk, though still childlike and carefree, had a step of determination and purpose. I became a bit overwhelmed, at the awesomeness of this young being God blessed me to raise.
My baby, my little boy, my first born is growing up … right before my eyes.
1. Tired mom, cranky kids, no TV
2. Tired mom, no cereal or eggs, too early to order takeout
3. Tired mom, mounds of laundry, mom I need some pants?
4. Tired mom, work to do, no creative brain cells working
5. Tired mom, fighting kids, no earplugs
Mom needs some sleep
Comment if you’ve been there! Lol.