Category Archives: parenting – my way

Beautiful Boy

We went to dinner last night, and then took Nick for a haircut. Great Clips, as you do. He patiently waited for his turn. Then, when it was his turn, he smiled and made small talk with the hair stylist.

He made small talk with the stylist.

For years, the same stylists would try to talk to him and he smiled at them with nothing to say. Or at least, without the ability, confidence, social skills to say anything. There has always been a lot going on inside, it just didn’t have a way out.

The stylist looked at me a couple times during the haircut and said “Does he ever get upset?” and “He is sweet down to his core.” and to him “You are my very favorite client.” and “You have made my whole day. We should all be more like you.”

The stylist next to her poked her head over and said “He smiled the whole time, didn’t he? I have never seen him not smiling.”

Sometimes a simple haircut can make a mom’s day too.

With his sister away with a friend for the weekend, he is enjoying his special time. We had donuts for breakfast and have already made cookies and played foosball.

He asked if I was letting him catch up to me in foosball. The truth? Nope. He loves foosball and is getting better and better every day. He’ll be beating me soon enough, so I’m taking all the wins I can right now. And when he beats me, he’ll know it was because he won, fair and square.

We’re honest with each other like that. At the end of the game, for a split second he might be sad that he lost, but faster than you can even realize it, he’s happy that I won. Because he loves me and he wants me to win everything. He roots for everyone before himself.

As we were making the cookies he started singing “Beautiful Boy” quietly to himself. I didn’t even know he knew that song but I joined right in singing with him. He smiled even bigger.

I asked him where he learned the song. It’s from a movie he likes, so no mom points for introducing him to the greats. We sang it together once and then he started changing the words to be Beautiful Fiona and Beautiful LuLu. He didn’t want to be the center of attention.

But he is the center of my attention. Even when I’m not doing a great job of showing him that. So I grabbed him, and we danced a little, and sang some more.

Me and my Beautiful Boy. 

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Queen of best intentions

I have the best intentions of playing that game right after dinner, and kicking the ball in the backyard right after laundry, and reading an extra story when we wake up, and practicing handwriting in a fun way.

I have the best intentions.

“Let me finish this work on the computer and then we can do that.”

“This will only take me ten more minutes and then I can play with you.”

I believe children need a lot of unstructured play. They need to dig in the mud and create secret forts with rules only known to them. They need to figure out how to entertain themselves. They need to create games and use their imaginations.

But they also need to know how valued they are.

Of all the gifts the children received from friends and family for Christmas and Nick’s birthday, the gift they wanted most was time. Our time. Time spent with both of the them and time spent one on one.

I ran across a quote in a post by Vodkamom talking about resolutions with her kindergarten class. They were talking about resolutions as being promises and one child said “I know. It’s like when you go to bed, and someone promises they will play with you in the morning, but then the morning comes and they don’t, it’s like breaking a promise!”

Ouch.

I have the best intentions.

I seem to bump whatever my best intention is because there is no apparent deadline, no thing to cross off my to do list. But their needs are just as important as whatever is on my to-do list. Spending the first part of the morning together, being together, starts us off in the right mindset. Then they can wander off to be children doing their children things while I occupy myself as mom/writer/business owner with a clear mind because the most important thing I needed to do that morning is already done.

End of December

It’s pretty bad when you can’t even remember your password to write a post. Ahem. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

Nick is now 5. Five. Wow. In a way it seems like he’s been 5 for a while, but in other ways, it can still sneak up on you. If he’s five, then Maggie is 7 1/2. Seven and a half is almost 8. I’m not sure I like where this is heading. I am trying to not worry about the teenage years until they are, you know, teenagers. (So my boy turns 5 and I’m talking about teenagers. I know… I know…)

Nick also is now tonsil and adenoid free. He’s breathing better, sleeping better, eating better and this week I can say for sure it was the right call. Actually as soon as the surgeon described the adenoids I knew it was the right call, but there’s that moment when your child wakes up from anesthesia that makes you wonder why you let these monsters touch your sweet baby, let alone carve part of their bodies out. He’s beyond all that, and was actually a pretty easy going patient. I could tell the day he felt better when he started messing with the cats again.

(P.S. for anyone who is having a tonsillectomy – 10 day recovery period. No lie. Ten days.)

And now we sit on the precipice of a new year – I’m a resolution maker. I am. Although I make resolutions just about every day, so it’s not really anything different for me. In late December, I usually write them down in a note on my phone and some years I look at the last year’s note and go with those. Other years, it’s a whole new list.

Some things I’m going to do this year (not resolutions, more goals):

take up knitting again, successfully this time.

launch a new website, with two redesigns on my current sites

pay off my super-duper new commercial embroidery machine (don’t worry, you’ll be hearing plenty about that soon.)

get back to more personal writing and documenting of our lives.

What about you? Do you make resolutions? Goals? Anything new you want to tackle in 2012?

chatty

Feeling a little chatty today. Ahem.

I took Nick to Home Depot yesterday to buy a 2×4 to use as a balance beam. I got a chance to see some of the PT he does at school and much of it are things that we could easily be practicing at home, assuming I have them on a to-do list to cross off.

Our 2×4 is nowhere near as nice as the school’s but ours was only $2.30. The school’s might actually be a 3×3, but I’m calling it close enough.

Anyway, Nick was very happy with our new purchase and apparently felt a certain amount of ownership. Maggie came home from school and a melee ensued over the 2×4 piece of lumber on our living room floor.

They took turns. Only because an adult was standing there making sure no one took a 2×4 to the head.

Today, minutes after Maggie got home from school, I came into the living room to see Nick stretched out (the boy is l-o-n-g) on the 2×4.

“Are you lying on that so Maggie can’t get on it?”

“Yes. It’s mine.”

At least he’s honest.

I guarantee you if I had bought two of them, no one would want to use either of them.

Guaranteed.

Check it out

We have a shorter winter than many and that’s why some of us (me) live here. I’m sharing some places to hang out with the kids when it’s cold or rainy.

 

how it begins

My children were playing Harry Potter in the basement with friends. They use my suitcase as their trunk when they are waiting for the train to Hogwarts.

Somehow the suitcase made it to the top of the stairs before it was abandoned for another part of the story.

My husband moved the suitcase out of the hallway into our bedroom, next to my closet.

I came to bed after he was asleep and  tiptoed around in the dark getting my pajamas on because I am a considerate person who doesn’t want to wake anyone. (ever. I pretty much NEVER want to wake anyone. It’s a good rule to live by.)

I put the clothes I took off on top of the suitcase that was in front of my closet.

THAT is how a pile gets started around here.

It begins so innocently.

pilers

After a long hiatus, I never know if I should catch you up on everything I’ve written in my head or just jump in with what’s in my head right now. (My head is a very, very full place.)

My parents have a cartoon on their wall that says “Filers should not marry pilers.” I’ve mentioned this cartoon before. I quote it all the time. What I’m just now realizing is pilers should not give birth to pilers and expect them to be filers.

Did you get that?

I’m having all sorts of drama over school work not coming home, completed homework not being turned in, and general disorganization. The guilty party (besides, well, me) doesn’t care. She has taken a few penalties at school, things that I think bother her, but she finds a way to not let it outwardly bother her.

I even talked to a counselor at school who mentioned one of the most important things:  Lead by example.

My dear piling child and I are screwed.