Tuesday, January 26, 2010

a clarkson bedtime, walton style

i'm sure you remember the infamous walton's bedtime routine. i never even watched this show...but i know how the family said goodnight. the siblings would all say goodnight to each other from their own rooms and beds. "goodnight john boy", etc. well, last night as i was feeding annslee downstairs in the living room and chad was tucking the kids in, i heard how our family does it.

chase: (yelling from his bed in his room to aiden in her bed all the way across the upstairs) "AIDEN......I JUST TOOTED IN MY BED!"

aiden: (yelling back from her bed to chase in his) "WHAT?"


aiden: (laughing) "CHASE....THAT'S FUNNY!!"

........and it was.

Monday, January 25, 2010


i am a lover of clothes, but am very different from most women in one particular area of fashion. i don't love shoes. i don't even really like shoes. i would go barefoot all the time if socially acceptable. i get by with 2 pair of flip flops all year round.....1 brown pair, and 1 black pair. i have a pair of heels that are so uncomfortable that i only wear them when absolutely necessary. i feel that they are the root of all foot induced evil. i also have a pair of black boots that jeans or leggings can be tucked into. i wear those twice a winter on average. i have a pair of imitation uggs that are super-de-duper comfy and cozy that i got at a manhatten payless when chad and i were in new york. the flip flops weren't cutting it in the sub-zero windchill and snow, so we had to make a stop to get something to keep my feet warm. these things are way comfortable and i love their look, but they make an appearance only when the temperatures here get down in the 30's...which is not very frequent. this year, i forgot i had them and actually did my christmas shopping on the snow day in...you guessed it...flip flops. oh well. my feet were cold...but at least they didn't hurt. all this rambling leads me to the point. we gathered up a bunch of the kid's shoes to send to haiti this morning. i had saved all the kid's shoes, so we had quite a few pairs that i thought needed to find some cute, little haitian feetsies. some of them looked like they had never been worn. this brought up some unresolved anger from a while back when our church did a "shoe drive" type thing. technically, you were supposed to bring the shoes that you wanted to give away to the lobby of the church and put them on this platform thing. i'm not really sure what the point was of putting them on display, but i didn't want to do it that way. after they made the "shoe give away" announcement, i wanted us to all take our shoes off right then and then have to go to lunch with no shoes on. just giving away our shoes is not a big sacrifice, but having to then walk out barefoot and go to lunch with no shoes on lead us to experience just a fraction of the uncomfortable-ness that people who have no shoes feel. so, aiden and i took off our barely worn shoes and walked out barefoot. aiden's were new mary janes that i got her to go with dresses, and mine were a brand spankin' new pair of running shoes. i NEVER wear my running shoes unless i'm running*, so it was weird that i had them on this particular morning instead of the ever popular flip flops. anyhow...i walked out feeling proud of us, which was most likely my downfall. :) fast forward to the next week when i noticed that, along with some other shoes from other people who had brought them in, aiden's were there, but my brand new running shoes were GONE! now, unless somebody came in from off the street who didn't have any shoes to wear, i can only conclude that someone who really didn't need them saw them and wanted them and decided to take them. i was furious that my give away shoe lesson had gone to waste. and, to make matters worse, the kids were there and saw it all. there goes my "teaching moment" from the week before too. i can only hope that those shoes went to someone who really needed them and not to someone who just selfishly swiped them. however, my pessimism takes over on this one. i found myself holding back on sending shoes to haiti because of this little incident that i have clearly not gotten over. i was thinking that they wouldn't really get there. i am still not sure they will make it to haiti, but i realized that God wasn't asking me to send them only if i knew for sure they would find the cute, little haitian boys and girls like i was imagining, but just to send them. period. so i did. *sigh*

* disclaimer: i realize that this sentence makes it seem as though i am an avid runner. i am not a runner. nor have i ran anywhere in the last 10 years. i have no business even owning running shoes. these shoes were bought on a whim when i told myself that i could be a runner, if only i had the appropriate shoes.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

i remember january 19, 2001

some years i don't think about it at all. some years it is something i think about only a few times during the day. and some years, such as this one, i think about it the whole day...almost re-living it. january 19, 2001. 9 years ago today. arguably the most influential day of my life. the day that colton felt cold, and i knew that a 5 day old bundle of sweet baby should feel warm and cozy. i was a new mom. it was uncharted territory for me. i didn't know anything about taking care of a baby. however, this much i knew...something was wrong with my baby. he wouldn't wake up to eat. he was listless and cold. i opened the thermometer package...the one that came with all the other new stuff at a shower that foreshadowed nothing but perfect happiness. i took his temperature and the mercury didn't rise. i thought it was broken, so i grabbed for a different one, fighting off the panic that was rising from within. this time, the digital reading blinked 94.3...and i knew it wasn't wrong. i bundled him up and wrapped him in a warm blanket and put a hat on him and held him as tight as i could while a called the doctor. they got him on the phone immediately, which now i understand meant it was considered an emergency. i will never forget his calm, but chilling words. "come straight to the office. now. don't stop for anything." chad met us there, and the next several hours are etched in my mind clear enough that i can revisit them and play them over and over like a movie. sometimes i wonder...if i could forget them, would i be different? would i not be so afraid and anxious all the time? would i be normal? would i be able to go to mcdonald's and let my kids play on the play equipment without getting a stomach ache? would my hands be cracking and bleeding most of the time from washing them so much? and those are just a few tangibles that may be different. we were sent straight to the hospital where the pediatrician called ahead to admit us. i remember chad walking ahead of me and carrying the infant carrier while i struggle to keep up. i remember my legs feeling weak. i remember his black coat that he was wearing, and the outfit colton was wearing. i remember trying to hurry through checking in...hoping to have answers soon. i remember them putting colton in a tiny hospital gown and gently shoving us aside to examine him. i remember them putting needles in him everywhere...drawing his blood for tests. and i remember how he never woke up or cried during that process. and even to a first time mom...i knew that that was not good. by this time, the darkness that was in my head had also become the night sky. they took him for a spinal tap and told us we couldn't come. i believe their exact words were, "it would be too hard for you to watch." i'm convinced that whoever told me that, did not know the strength of a mother when their child needs them. i didn't argue, but today i wish i had. i remember 4 different doctors drilling me with questions. i remember them saying they didn't know. i remember chad being calm. i remember fear. i remember begging...begging doctors...begging God. it took a little over 24 hours for them to diagnose him with meningitis. i remember the doctor telling me that someone had come in contact with him who had not washed their hands and that that is why he got sick...not realizing what that statement would do to me. i remember thinking it was my fault and vowing to never let it happen again. i remember the IV that was in his arm coming out in the middle of that first night while i was nursing him and pulling him away from my body to see both of us covered in blood. i remember screaming for chad to wake up and screaming for the nurse because i didn't know what had happened. i remember chad sleeping on a palate on the floor. i remember sleeping in a chair. i remember anyone who came in his room having to wear the yellow gowns and masks and the sign on the door that said "infectious disease". i remember not eating. i remember refusing to leave the hospital. i remember pouring my heart out to God in the shower, and that becoming my time of comfort each day. i remember God whispering His promises to me during those short times. i remember crying. i remember my parents having to leave to come back to texas. i remember holding tightly to my dad's shirt when he hugged me bye. i remember them telling me that they would not leave if they didn't know he was going to be ok. i remember chad's strength. i remember the IV in colton's head. i remember the doctor coming to see colton every morning during his rounds and i remember the day he realized what i needed to hear every morning. "he's not going to die." i remember him telling me every day. i remember getting to go home. i remember never being the same.

thank you God for protecting my baby. thank you for healing him. thank you for answering our prayers on that day. please be patient with me. i know i need to trust you more, and fear you less. thank you for knowing, that for me...it's alot to remember.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

i'm sorry i'm late.

i've noticed that i am having difficulty keeping on top of things lately. quite frankly, i'm really not on top of anything and it's been going on longer than just "lately." all i can get accomplished (and by accomplished...i mean half-way done) is the clothes washed and dried and sometimes folded, food on the table (and by food...i mean sometimes cereal), and the kids to school on time (and by on time...i mean there seconds before the tardy bell with only 1 tardy a week). for example, the other day (colton's birthday to be exact), i had to have annslee fed, diaper changed, clothes changed from all the spit up, and her diaper bag packed; the boy's homework done; all of them pottied and dressed and at the restaurant for colton's birthday dinner at 5:00. in order to do this, i had to start at 3. so, that means that in order to get the boy's picked up at 3, i had to start the process for getting ready for that around 1. at that time, i was supposed to have the cupcakes made and delivered to the school...which process i had to start that morning. that morning i was supposed to be at a friend's house for our "coffee morning". so the process of getting the boy's to school and annslee fed and dry and happy and aiden dressed and fed and myself somewhat presentable to the outside public had to start somewhere around 5 am. so...what i have figured out is that when i wake up at 7 in the morning to start my day, i am already 2 hours behind!

Saturday, January 09, 2010

two dimpled darlins

can we talk about houw cute these two dimpled darlins are? seriously. i love dimples. when i was little, i thought that i would have dimples if my cheeks were fatter. so...i ate ice cream every day to try to fatten them up. it didn't work. so God decided to give me kids that had them. thanks God. i just can't get enough.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

A Good Story

we were at my parent's house during the first part of december when i came across a little, lost treasure. and it is called THE GREATEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER. this was a book that i fondly remember from my childhood, that i have found myself thinking about throughout the years, but had no idea that my mom had saved it! it is so worn and tattered...but just as lovely and endearing as i remembered it to be. i scooped it up and asked mom if i could take it and read it to the kids...which she let me do, of course. that started a neat, little thing that i like to call "reading our chapter for the night." i started out gathering the kids and reading 1 chapter each night. however, they ended up liking it so much that we started sneaking in more chapters each night. after we finished that book...we didn't want to stop our family gathering each night. so we picked out a new Junie B Jones book (which are some of the funniest children's stories that i have ever read) called JINGLE BELLS; BATMAN SMELLS; (PS, SO DOES MAY). it had chad and i rolling along with the kids. after we finished that...i decided that we needed to keep this little tradition up as long as possible. now, we are in the middle of THE BOXCAR CHILDREN. it is not as funny as the first two books, but they are all listening at least. and...i think the story lends itself to facilitating imaginative play for them. there are 4 kids...2 brothers and 2 sisters that are homeless and having to be very resourceful to get shelter and food each day. i love that the kids are involved in a story where kids their own age are coveting things from the dump that they can make a spoon or fork out of and vegetables from someones garden that are considered too small or bruised to be used. we try to explain to them how grateful they should be to have food on their plates and a roof over their heads...much less all the video games, tvs, and all the other extravagant things they have. and in this story...that actually comes to life for them. i decided to just read the story...and not try to make a lesson out of it just yet, but i can tell that colton, especially, is thinking about it. which i love. i'm already excited about what book we will pick up next. and to think...the greatest family time of our day was started with a great, little christmas pageant. love the books. love the kids. love the time together to get lost in the pages of a good story.