Saturday, January 31, 2009

3 Things I'm Grateful For

1- flash drives
2- to be able to tell our children that even though they miss dad because of his work schedule lately, at least they can count on him being home weekends. How many kids' dads are dead, on active duty or just don't care?
3- weekends

Saved The Planet

No, I'm not the organic, froo-froo type that eats only things that are brown and oozing, or wears clothes that feel like they are made out of burlap because they are.

But DH saw a news report about the thousands of plastic bags clogging up the landfill and the half-life of each bag. He begged me to find an alternative to the bags that we use.

So to do our part, we not using the plastic bags that our groceries come in as trash can liners. We are buying these cool biodegradable "plastic" bags.

We are supposed to use the cotton reusable bags at the grocery store now, but I always forget to bring them in. I have a hard enough time toting my kids and not being tempted to leave them in the car. Now I have to bring my own bags too? It seems a little too much.

So I end up getting the plastic bags from the grocery store and recycling them. It's a start. Here is my new favorite line of soaps and cleaning supplies. They are cost-effective and smell great. Did I mention that they are, shhh, environmentally friendly?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Three Things I am Grateful For

1- youth, for now
2- a mother that I choose to be my friend
3- comfy bed

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Did Nothing

BG has a diorama due in 2 weeks on harp seals and their environment. Usually she hems and haws until the last moment then whines and cries that I'm not helping her and throws something uninspired together. So I decided to wait and see if she was going to make good use of the 2 weeks to plan, sketch, design and create.

She surprised me. She asked for a box right away and I told her to put her ideas on paper first. She had some great ideas and started to work on the box. Then BB offered some ideas that got them both excited and they brainstormed on how to make it work.

She started gluing and cutting. I was popping in and out not quite sure what to think of this new-found exuberance. After 2 hours of work, she carried in her diorama and I was floored!

There is a top layer of ice with a hole in it. Next to the hole is a polar bear. Under the ice are blue fish and eels (which harp seals eat) hanging by string. The seals are to the left under the ice. They are attached to a stick that moves back and forth so the seals can "catch" the fish. The big white chunks of paper on the top of the ice are the icebergs.

I was impressed. And she did it herself. No whining. No procrastinating. Just good, old-fashioned creativity and 2nd grader know-how.

Then the girls had some time to kill before bed, so they decided to play cards. BEG didn't like where she ended up sitting because she would have to look at the cards upside down. She started crying and pouting. I was about to announce that she was too tired and should go to bed, when BBG told her bigger sister that she could trade her places and "have my spot- K?" AW! What a sweet peacemaker. I told BBG that I was proud of her for being so grown up. And I told BEG that BBG knew how to be kind because she had seen the examples of her older sisters. I was glad that the older two could see that BBG is watching what they do and that there lots of good to rub off onto her.

Three Things

A few months ago, my mom challenged me to end each day by writing down 3 things that I'm grateful for. I haven't been diligent, but thought I could start here and now.

1- disposable diapers
2- a son that still cares about my opinion
3- a husband who works hard and doesn't complain about it

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Read a story (or started at least)

BBG was deliberately bothering others. I was tempted to send her to her room to play. Then I realized that she was looking for interaction. I told her to go get some of her books and we would read together. It took her so long, I thought she got distracted and forgot. Then she apperared in the hall carrying a stack of 12, yes 12, carefully selected CHAPTER books. She was huffing and puffing as she dropped them at my feet. BEG laughed and said, "Well that's what you told her. Now you gotta read them ALL to us." Then they both cuddled up while we read a few chapters. Luckily the oven timer beeped and dinner was ready. Otherwise, I'd still be reading.

I guess even a three-year old can figure out that once you get mom's attention: Grab on and hold tight, because the moments are few. Mom's do that with soft cheeks and kids that like to cuddle.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Winter swimming

DH took today off work. I could have run errands, sorted pictures, dried the batch that has been going moldy in the washing machine. But, I didn't have a headache, I felt rather good actually. Everyone was healthy. BBB is old enough to go a few hours without eating, so... we loaded up the kiddies and went swimming at the local indoor pool. The advertised temperature of 86 degrees actually feels colder than I expected. Other than that, the kids had fun, we all floated around and acted like nuts AND we did it together. I didn't regret one moment of it, and the kids didn't make me regret taking them. They were pleasant and grateful the rest of the day. Ahhhh.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Taught the Pediatrician about Children

Yes, I know, It sounds self righteous. There are just some tricks that I have figured out on my own or been taught by my mother that work. And I mean, ALWAYS WORK.

My kids' doctor has been expecting the arrival of his twin grandbabies. At my son's appointment, the doctor announced that they had arrived and that his daughter was having an especially hard time with her 20-month old being jealous of the twins. I told him that my mom taught me to get the last "baby" involved with the new baby and they won't be jealous. It also inducts them into Big Kidhood.

I told the doc that from the time my second was born until our latest, I have always put the youngest in charge of getting a diaper and a wipe for the baby. Then, as I get the bottom ready, the young one holds the wipe in their hands and is the "Wipey Warmer". Essentially you need the cold wipe warmed so as not to alarm the unsuspecting baby. Who better than the now-big-sister/brother? It works like a charm. The diaper change only lasts a minute and then they are tired of helping and ready to go back to their toys. But it's just enough time to make them feel special and helpful. Isn't that what we all want?

And if you do it right, they will (as BBG puts it) "Be yo gawbage gurl" and happily take the messy diaper to the garbage for you. And they'll thank you for giving them the chance to be included.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I Quit My Job

I have been praying about what I should improve about my character. Be careful what you ask for. I have seen MAJOR character flaws. For example, today while driving the kids to school, I was following an annoying driver. You've seen them- the type that you wish would turn the opposite way just so you don't have to share the road with them. I happened to follow him the whole way to school, and into the school parking lot. As he pulled to the curb, and I drove past him, I found my self looking at him. "Why? Why do you need to see his face?" I asked myself. As I pulled to the curb, and my kids shuffled out, I realized that I am a vindictive, mean, grouch who can't let things go. So, why I wanted to see his face? Because I wanted to keep score about what the idiot looked like so that the next time I saw him in the school, around the neighborhood or at the store, I could give him his well-deserved scowl and feel better that I had delivered justice upon this unsuspecting person. Yes, I was keeping score. Who am I to play traffic cop to all the idiots who forget to put on their blinker, forget to turn it off, go too fast, go too slow, or just do anything that I deem annoying? So, I decided to quit my job as traffic cop and stop keeping score. After all, I don't need ANOTHER job. Especially one that doesn't pay.