Tuesday, April 27, 2010

EXPECTATIONS...never a good idea

i have this thing that i do. i build moments up so that the expectations for the moment end up taking over the reality of the moment. i do this, at some point, every day. this thing that i do gets especially out of control during the different holidays. and i add pressure to myself by thinking that i have to capture these perfect, meaningful," thekidswillneverforgetthis" moments on camera. what is this really about? for now, i'm content to just tell the story.

after school yesterday, the kids and i gathered in the backyard to enjoy the perfect weather. this started out innocent enough. the older three were playing their various loves. colt with a ball and glove in hand, throwing off the house; chase tinkering and meandering and loving being chase; and aiden trying to keep up with her oldest brother in between the pull for her affections by the ds; and lastly, but not leastly...annslee in the excersauser...totally engrossed with her bee and flower that always magically flit around her while in this lovely, treasured seat. ahhhh...a peaceful afternoon to sit on the patio and read my new people magazine that has been anxiously awaiting my attention since i plucked her from the magazine rack in the target line that morning. i sit down, smile at annslee and her bee next to me and begin to thinklessly read about angelina and brad's brood. and then it happened. a little, neighbor girl from chase's class showed up with another little boy from chase's class and his twin sister. well...if the backyard is going to become non-peaceful...i might as well text my brother's love and the 2 girls she watches to come play too. (we had discussed getting together during pick up an hour earlier.) i begin to picture pottery barn kids backyard playtime, complete with lemonade, laughter and good conversation. i leave colton in charge of puddie while i go in to make a big pitcher of lemonade, (mistake #1 due to him getting sidetracked by the pitcher's mound) and pull out a tray and cups for everyone. kevin's love and i block annslee from getting pelted by a line drive, as baseball became the game of choice, and i pour the lemonade. at this point, my poor people magazine had been tossed to the ground...pages blowing in the wind...feeling totally neglected. instead of good conversation, we had colt bossing everyone around like they were members of his little league team, chase hitting colt with the plastic bat due to such bossing, lemonade spilling all over the patio, empty cups blowing down the driveway, sisters fighting, annslee spitting up, and other less than perfect situations that i have chosen to block from my memory. what just happened here? how did we go from pottery barn/lemonade fun to complete chaos and hysteria? c.c. took care of puddie while i tried to do my part and play on the little girl's, non-stacked team to help the goingdownhillfast situation...but we still ended up with kids stomping off the field (yard) and going home due to boredom (hurt feelings). after everyone is gone, i survey the damage, clean up the spilled lemonade...that no one said thank you for, by the way...and pick up plastic cups from all over the yard (front and back). the reality is that the kids did have fun. they did like the lemonade. i did get to enjoy the company of c.c. i did get to play ball with my kids. and the best part...they have never even seen the pottery barn kids catalog to know about backyard/lemonade perfect playtime, so they don't know that any expectations went unmet. and me...next time, i'll put out some water, smile at puddie and her bee next to me, flip the pages of my people to the sounds of fighting kids, and save the expectations for the next holiday.

Saturday, April 24, 2010


things i am excited about today:

-aiden and chase wearing their blue baseball tee's for colton's game. (my goal was to buy iron on letters and put clarkson on their backs and colton's number, and then put "brother" on the front of chase's and "little sis" on aiden's and to get annslee a white onsie and put "littlest sis" on the front...but the whole plan is not happening. so, the baseball tees that are the right color will have to do for now. and annslee doesn't ever get out of her carrier anyway...and she would just spit up on it and need to be changed right away anyway.)
-the fact that i got to go to old navy...alone...and get shorts for the kids. they were on sale for $10.
-the fact that all 6 of our birthdays are on EVEN days. i've talked about this before, but it really excites me and something made me think about this today. when i was pregnant with colton, i hoped that he would be born on an even...because evens are my favorite and i hate odds. so, i am on the 24th and chad is on the 30th. colton was due on the 19th and came on the 14th. yay. then, when it was chase's turn, i really hoped he would be even too. he came on the 30th. double yay! so far, so good. when i was nearing my due date for aiden, i thought that i was probably due to have an odd one. i went into labor on the 11th but held out until the 12th...just after midnight. so, needless to say annslee HAD to be born on an even. and i was willing to do whatever it took. i went into labor on the 7th. my dr. got to the hospital that evening and at around 10:00, she said to start a small pitocin drip and that i would deliver quickly. i said, "wait! she has to wait until midnight. she has to be born on the 8th. she has to be an even!" everyone just looked at me kinda weird and then my dr. smiled and looked at the nurse and said, "start the drip at 11:45." (love her.) annslee was born after midnight on the 8th. yay! yay! yay! and bonus...8 is my very favorite number. it's important to finish well!

-it is beyond beautiful outside for colt's game this afternoon.

-aiden's hair.

things i am not excited about today:

-annslee cried for an hour and a half this morning trying to fall asleep in her bed. she finally fell asleep and only stayed asleep for 6 minutes or so.

-when colton went to put his uniform on a little bit ago, we realized it had not been washed since his last game. woops. nothin a little fabreeze won't fix.

-my hair.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

in his world...everything's better

so chase is the man of the hour, as he has racked up enough hilarious quotes to deserve his own blog post. i do realize that all kids are funny in their own right, some with a sarcastic bent, like colton...and others because of how they truly see the world...like chase. i am beyond thrilled that i get to sometimes get a peek at life through the eyes of chase. in his world...everything's better.

here are some of his latest:

"when annslee becomes human, she is going to be on dancing with the stars." (he was totally serious.)

while he was in the tub the other night, i noticed i tiny scrape on his chest. i said, "goodness chase. how did you get that?" he looked down at it and said, "oh...i don't know. we need to get a band aide for that. call 911!!" (again...totally serious.)

we have been working on improving a little behavior lately and it is called, we don't put our hands on our siblings in anger. at different times, different ones tend to struggle with this. a while back, it was colt. right now, it is chase. after 1 warning last week, chase ended up having to write sentences for hitting his brother. the sentence was *i am sorry for hitting my brother.* he sat in the dining room to write his sentences and i sat down on the couch in the living room to talk to chad. about 10 minutes went by and chase walked in with his pencil and paper. he showed his paper to me and pointed at his sentences with his pencil and this is what i saw...

1 - 5 said i'm sorry for hitting my brother.
6 - 8 said i'm sorry for hitting.
9 - 25 said i'm sorry.

he explained that he "decided to only write the important part because his hand was tired."

i told him that was kind of the point.

several days later, i heard aiden start crying upstairs. she proceeded to cry all the was downstairs to where i was. she started to tell on chase and stopped as chase came up quickly behind her with a piece of paper and a pencil. before she could tell me what had happened, he looked at me and said, "i'm gonna go ahead and start my sentences." he makes parenting easy!

colton has been saving his money for a DSi. his old DS broke, so he has been helping around the house to earn money to add to what he already had saved up. he had a substantial sum in his wallet that he keeps in his nightstand drawer. he was almost there. some nights, before bed he would get it out and count it. we even did it together one night and i showed him how i like to keep all the like bills together and facing in the same direction in value order. (obviously the correct way! :) anyhow, a few nights ago, he went up with chad and was going to add some money that he had made to the money in his wallet. a few minutes later, he and chad came downstairs to where i was holding sleeping puddie. chad said that all the money in his wallet was missing. i thought they were kidding until i saw colton's face. i said i didn't know where it was and colton lost it. i said, "let me go talk to chase. maybe he and aiden knew something about it." while i was headed up after putting aj to bed, colt met me in the hallway with the stack of money. he said, rather agitated, "i found it under chase's bed." i walked into chase's room and he popped up in bed like he was expecting the visit and said, "what????" i sat down on his bed next to him and the following conversation took place:

me: "chase......did you take colton's money out of his wallet?"

chase: "no. i didn't. and i'm serious."

me: "chase......you need to tell me the truth."

chase (looking away): "no. i didn't take his money."

me (looking at him like he was not pulling anything over on me): "if you lie to me, you will be in more trouble than if you tell the truth."

chase (eyes wide, very dramatic, arms waving): "what happened was......i think colton's wallet opened......and the wind blew the money under my bed."

do you see how it is difficult to ever really get mad at chase?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

sleep and trains

yesterday, puddie took an hour and a half morning nap. today, she took a 2o minute morning nap instead.

consistency is over-rated is what she said.

when i heard her crying...ready to get up, i looked at aiden. aiden looked at me and said, "she didn't EVEN take a nap!" to which i replied, "I KNOW!"

here is a little morsel of randomness this morning. i've been reading a smackeral of different things lately. a little about lukewarmness (which is just super at making you feel good about yourself) and a little about knowing your children's hearts (which also makes a mom feel like a winner) and a little about how "God does not deal with us according to our sins, nor does he repay us according to his iniquities." psalms 103 10-12 (which IS a "let out a grateful sigh" kind of verse.) due to all of these little nugget whisperings from God, i have scheduled a meeting with the husband. (literally. he put me in his iphone calendar this morning.) it's go time.

in talking things over with my experienced, truth telling, and loving mother at lunch yesterday, i came up with a little analogy of what is causing the restlessness inside. it is this:

you know how freight trains roll? you hear them slowly get started. then you hear the whistle warning people that it is getting ready to move. then you see the wheels start to turn and it slowly begins down the track. then, after a bit it starts moving a little quicker. (hear the sound of it slowly picking up speed?) then, it starts moving faster and faster...until it is going so fast that it is much too late to get on or off. well...my little, lovely family of 6 is on that train, and the train has been moving down the track pretty slowly up until about a year ago when it started picking up speed. now we are moving a little quicker and everything in me is screaming over the noise of the train that this is the time that we have to decide to stay on or get off...or it will be too late. the train will be moving too fast to get off without doing some real damage. i see how life can just sort of take over. school, activities, practices, games, meals, chores, babies, work, responsibilities, etc, etc, etc take up the day. and this goes on day, after day, after day. until annslee leaves for college and chad and i look at each other and wonder, "what on earth happened? where did that time go? and why didn't we stop and do it differently?" are we supposed to stay on the "live safely in the suburbs in a big house with big screen tvs and all the comforts that our little heart's desire, cross our fingers, and hope our kids make it through the public school system without some serious scars" train? OR, are we supposed to get off now, before it's too late? the trouble is, if we all grab hands and jump off, i don't know where we would land at this point. the ground doesn't seem to be there. i'm asking God to show me if he wants us to stay on this train, or not. and if not.....what are we supposed to jump to? i keep thinking that he usually asks his followers to live boldly, and radically. am i doing that? are we training our kids to do that? what does this feeling of discontentment mean? is it time to get off the train? i know we are supposed to do something differently, but i have no idea what. what i do know...is that the train is moving. and it's going to do nothing but move faster.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


thanks to grandaddy...we can all sport the infamous master's logo.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

chronicals of easter

we start off the holiday with chase losing his first tooth on friday morning. followed by a tractor ride at uncle kevin's

then...annslee rolls over,

while colton announces that his favorite things to do are eating snacks, playing video
games, sports, and sleeping. (look how big he looks...yikes! 9 going on 19.)
chase...showing his "hole"

colton...ready for his game on saturday. and the egg hunt!

sweet pea

puddin pie and her grandaddy

puddy annslee james

grandaddy buys ice cream from the ice cream man. a must!

permission to kiss the dimples?

granna and honey sportin' kevin's fightwear hats at the game. this one's a keeper!

puddy in her u.k.'s furia hat

we miss daddy!

puddin and her mommy

my girls

happy easter