Friday, March 29, 2013

Funny Bunny

I didn't have my camera at Christmas when he dressed like an elf.

I didn't have my camera on St. Patrick's Day when he dressed like a leprechaun.

But I had it this morning.

This is the crossing guard at my kids' elementary school.  Also known as the Easter Bunny. (Well, today.)

He always has kind and encouraging words for the kids each day and it is obvious that they love him as much as he loves them.

Best crossing guard EVER.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

The (insert your name here) Show

photo here

Have you ever imagined what it would be like to be the star of your own T.V. show?  The thought came to mind recently out of the blue.  Imagine what it would be like for even just a day to have every moment of your life captured on video and broadcast for anyone that would like to watch. 

Would you do anything differently?

I'm pretty sure that I would.

I would spend less time getting frustrated over the things I can't control and more time laughing.

I would smile more.

I would cook from scratch more.

I would spend less time trying to pluck out my gray hairs and trust my kids when they say they aren't very obvious.

I know we're not supposed to care what others think, but I do.  And I think most people do.  And because of this, I would spend less time in my pajamas all day.

I would spend less time on the computer and more time on the floor, playing with my kids.

I would take more time to tuck each of my kids in at night, to read them stories and sing them songs and look them in the eyes and tell them that I love them.  Even the teenagers.

I would make time to visit the hairdresser more often (more than once every year or so).

I would actually buy clothes for myself when I go shopping.

I would speak more positively of myself around my kids and less negatively about others.

I would be more insistent that my teenage daughters wear their bike helmets even if it means they will "look like crap" at school.

I would be a better wife, mother, sister, aunt, cousin, leader, friend.

I would still sing at the top of my lungs whenever I wanted.

And I would still bust out my crazy I-can't-dance-moves like no one was watching.

Because not even being on national television would stop that.

(Sorry kids.)

Monday, March 18, 2013

We Have A Winner!

Curly helped me choose the winner of the book set this morning.  I was excited to see her choose my friend Lena! 

And just to prove it was a legit drawing, I videotaped it.  (Watch for the cutest photobomber, ever.)

Your books will be in the mail this week!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Books I Read: How To Behave And Why (Plus a Giveaway!)

One of my favorite things to do is find treasures at my local thrift store, D.I.  I try to avoid the book section when I go because our bookshelves already look like this:

But those rows and rows of shelves lined with gently loved books call to me and I can never resist seeing what I can find.  The last time I went, I found a great pile of books, including these four:

and I was ecstatic - only $1 apiece!  However, Allen does not appreciate this kind of humor or the conversations that inevitably spark up as a result of them, so I really need to find them a new home.  If you're interested leave a comment telling me so and I'll do a drawing for them by the end of the week.

Among the pile of books I bought was this find:

How to Behave and Why by Munro Leaf.  I had never heard of it before but the simple illustrations and colors and the retro-ish lettering of the title drew me in.  I leafed through the pages and decided it was worth the $2 tag.  Once I got home and read through the whole book I pretty much fell in love with it.

This book is filled with all of those important things that moms tell their kids all the time - be nice, don't cheat, listen to your elders, don't whine, smile... and so on.  It was written in 1946 but every word still applies to us today.  This would make a great gift for anyone of any age.  It's like a little instruction manual for life.  Check out a few of the pages:




See what I'm saying?  I love it.  The book is only 60 pages long and you will finish it in 10 minutes or less but it's totally worth having in your library no matter your age.

Don't be surprised if I give you a copy for your birthday.

**Just to be clear - the giveaway is only for the set of 4 books in the second picture.  Leave me a comment telling me you want them and I'll do a drawing at the end of the week.**

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Quick Quips

Little O: Heavenly Father telled me that I need to sleep on your floor tonight.
Me: He did?  Really?
Little O: Yes, Mom!  I'm not lying!
Me: How did He tell you that?
Little O: Well... He haves a magic phone and He knows my phone word to call me.
Me: Really?  What's your phone word?
Little O: O-B-C-D.  And I know His phone word, too, so I can call Him, too.
Me: Wow.  What's His phone word?
Little O: E-A-M-B.
Me: And how do you call Him?
Little O: On His magic phone, I said.
Me: Do you have a magic phone too?
Little O: Uh... not really.  That's what's so magic about it.
Me: That's pretty amazing.  I can only talk to Him by praying.  Why don't I have a magic phone?
Little O: Duh.  Because you're a mom.
Me: Okay, then.
Little O: Can we make me a bed on your floor now?
Me: I guess we have to.  I can't really say no to Heavenly Father, can I?
Little O: I wouldn't if I was you.

Little O: Can I watch the movie about the good lion and the bad animals and they talk even though they're animals and animals aren't supposed to talk like peoples?

Little O: I want to watch a girl movie.
Me: Why?
Little O: Because I like girls, that's why.  But I DON'T like kissing girls. I only kiss you, Mom.

Little O: (to Allen and I) What are you guys talking about in here?
Us: Girl's Camp.
Little O: Can I tell you guys a boy camp story?
Us: Sure.
Little O: Well, I don't want to tell you the camp story where the dad gets ated by a sharp toothed dinosaur and a crocodile. And the alligator's name is Sharp-Toothed Teeth.  Sooooooo... once upon a time there was a boy named O and a dad named Dad. They builted a big tent with a hole for a stove. There was a chicken there. Its name was Glasses. The dad and the O went fishing. O didn't catched anything but the dad catched a starfish. Then Glasses came over so they ated him instead. The end.

Little O: (to Hubba) You're such a cool selfish jerk.

Little O: I'm getting married tomorrow!
ElemenoB: To who?
Little O: A beautiful princess pirate with a sparkly shirt and long, black hair and blue eyes.
ElemenoB:  What's her name?
Little O: Princess Pirate.
ElemenoB: That's not a name.
Little O: Well, I didn't meeted her yet!  I don't know her real name.  I just have to find her.  Then we will all sit at a table and drink root beer and eat pizza! 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Just Another Manic Sunday

X, recharging after church.

I wrote this last week, February 24th, after an especially frustrating day of church.  After talking with another mom in the foyer today I decided to post it.

I find myself in the church foyer once again where an impromptu first-hour nursery is being held without walls or doors to contain the unruly toddlers.  Other mothers and even fathers stand there with me, creating imaginary walls with their bodies in a pointless attempt to keep the little monkeys where we want them.  There is a speaker overhead, piping out the words that are being spoken from the pulpit.  I want to listen but I never hear more than half a sentence at a time because my two littlest boys are demanding my attention as they maneuver through the obstacle course of strollers, sippy cups, smashed goldfish crackers and discarded toys.

X escapes from the crowd and bolts down the hallway maze which leads to the stage at the back of the gym, his favorite place to play on Sunday afternoons.  Why?  Because the acoustics there are awesome.  He can run, stomp, laugh and yell and it sounds five times as loud as anywhere else.  I make the decision to leave Little O and make a run for X.

This is what he wants.  It is all part of the game.  If I don't come after him he knows he has that whole stage to himself to perform the perfect disturb-all-classes-currently-in-progress show.  If I do come after him, we run.  In his 2-year-old mind his escape creates a win-win situation.

I finally catch up to him as he is halfway across the stage, screaming with delight at the chase gets closer.  I scoop him up into my arms and plead with a silent no-no as I make my way back to the foyer circus.  Little O is sitting happily in someone's stroller, munching on stray cheerios he has found in its hidden folds.  I remove him from the stroller, remind him that he's too big for such things, and set X down again because he is intentionally twisting his body into positions that make him difficult to hold.

They both make their way to the drinking fountain and fight over who gets to stand on the step stool there.  X wins and pushes his tummy out as far as he can then bounces himself against the bar that activates the water.  On.  Off.  On.  Off.  On.  Off.  Little jets of water shoot out of the faucet and he is delighted by the water show he has created.  Little O distracts me with the news that he needs to go to the bathroom (again) and X remembers that the faucet on this fountain is broken and can be turned around to attempt to squirt the water into the trash can on the floor.  Bounce, bounce.  Off.  On.  Off.  On.

I lift X up and attempt to wipe some of the wetness from the front of his sweater.  I look around to see if anyone has noticed that most of the water from the skewed fountain landed in a puddle just shy of the trash can but I'm pretty sure we're in the clear.  I can blot it up after the (fourth) trip to the bathroom.  I grab Little O's hand and as we walk in he reminds me, as he always does, that he is a boy and this is a girl's bathroom.  We make our way into the stall and X immediately shimmies under the door to play on the chairs in the adjacent mothers room as I'm helping Little O get situated on the elevated toilet seat.  I tell him to hurry, worried that there are actual mothers in the mothers room trying to get their infant children to sleep.

Little O makes his usual loud request of MOMWIPEMYPOOPI'MDONEGOINGPOOOOOOOP! and I quickly get him all buttoned and zipped then rush into the mothers room to find X banging one of the rocking chairs against the wall as he laughs maniacally.  I apologize to the unfamiliar nursing mother and make my way back to the foyer where the second speaker is just beginning to share some thoughts.

I have some thoughts of my own.  The ones I try to suppress, but they always seem to return every week.  Why do I even come to church?  I could tend these two at home and it would be so much easier!  And then I remind myself that I come to church because it's where I'm supposed to be and that my boys are learning that it is where they are supposed to be, too.  I repeat it over and over in my mind but the other thoughts always threaten to come out victorious.

For some reason I am having an especially difficult time today.  I can feel the tears making their way through me from my heart to my throat and I try to keep them there so they don't work their way to my eyes.  And this is when it happens.

My 2-year-old stops wiggling.  He grabs my face with his little pudgy hands and stares me down, his forehead resting against mine.  Then somehow as I'm looking into those beautiful brownish-hazel eyes our souls are communicating.  I am not sure how else to describe it.  In that moment his eyes reminded me of a thousand different moments with each of my other kids, moments of frustration and struggle that eventually became contentment and relief and joy.  I remembered that he is my last baby and that I want to enjoy every moment.  I remembered my desire to smile, to laugh.  To find the good in the bad.

Just as these feelings of peace are washing over me X leans back and contorts his body so I'll put him down.  I oblige, as I always do, but not before he slams the back of his head into my chest.  Little O has acquired some cars from another child and is making zooming sounds as he races them across the backs of the furniture in the foyer.  X rips a car out of Little O's hand and amid screams of HEY GIVE IT BACK HE STOLE MY CAR X chucks it at the door to a Bishop's office down a tiny hallway while somehow running to retrieve it at the same time.  I sigh.

I'm here because I'm supposed to be, I remind myself.  But somehow, this time I believe it.