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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Flatter Me Please

I have to admit something here. I love going through Gabrielle's backpack each day when she arrives home from school. I told Travis I didn't know I was beginning a new part-time position when she started Kindergarten. All the paperwork, order forms, etc - oh my! I committed to keeping it all very organized from the get go as paperwork is not my strong point. I recycle non-important papers, file information for future review (monthly calendar, snack schedule, school directory and such) and add things into a keepsake binder. One thing that provides me with a smile are the resource papers she brings home almost daily. So far this week they look something like this:
Pictured a towel, turtle, tiger, the number 10 & toothbrush
Gabrielle spelled tawl, ______, tigr, tin & tfbrsh
Pictured three individual picture windows which are for drawing a person, a place & a thing
Gabrielle drew herself playing under the sun in the backyard near a large tree, a tawr (tower), and a TV. Next to the TV she wrote ten TV. When I asked her about this she said, "Well, I usually only watch TV for like ten minutes."
I am thrilled that she is enjoying school and quickly forming new friendships. I am even more elated that she has said multiple times now that she loves school. She is excited to tell me all the details of her day as soon as she walks through the front door.
This momma's heart is happy!

Monday, September 27, 2010

We Survived

It is Monday afternoon which means we are back from farmland.
The great news is we survived.
Not without a tantrum or two, but all in all we had a fantabulous time.
I will never, ever take for granted the laid back
way of life I come from in small rural Iowa.
Although I did not grow up farming I appreciate the beauty of the fields and the produce they provide for us all.
My favorite part of visiting my hometown is my time with my 2nd family.
I always treasure the time we get with the Morris's.
They have and always will be soooooo good to us.
I got my baby fix by canoodling the adorable little Benjamin Bradley.
I foresee a little Mrs. Benjamin Bradley Morris joining our family in January.
Audra, are you with me on this one?
I picked up some tips on some awesome baby gear that
is hot in the Philly region. I may just have to
start some baby trend setting here in the Midwest :)
Today has been a day cram packed with unpacking, cleaning, reorganizing & meal preparation. Did I mention disciplining?
Yeah, that one falls in there too.
I have two monkeys that need to learn it is NOT OK to hit one another.
I will be back soon with pics from our weekend mini vaca.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

This one is for my Mom

Where to start?
I have really missed keeping up with our family blog, but if I am being 100% honest, I just have not made it a priority. So much has taken place since my last post. Fun and exciting outings, milestone and momentous moments, big firsts, ups and downs with personal life and child rearing. Looking back now I wish I had indeed taken the time to record each of those events be them small or large. This is where I am at in life at this moment. A mom struggling to juggle all the many hats we as moms wear - homemaker, meal planner & preparer, household banker, primary child caregiver, friend and most importantly my role as a wife. Since I already stated I would be 100% honest I will share that I feel I have failed miserably in most of the above areas as of recent. I have continued to maintain the house for the most part but can say that I am more than relieved that my somewhat severe tendency toward house cleaning has been kicked to the curbside. I feel like a super star if I do indeed have a well balanced meal prepared and on the table for my family for supper. The frustrating part is 9 out of 10 times the kids refuse to eat it and I (even in my 2nd trimester) still prefer a bowl of cereal or a PB bagel, so we have wasted a lot of good meat and vegetables lately. Argh! I, for the first time in my adult life, have paid two bills (Kohl's and VISA) a day late over the course of the past month. Do you know what that equals? Late fees! And if you want to see my tail feathers ruffled charge me a late fee when it is my own darn fault!! Several friendships have fallen by the wayside as I have been wrapped up in myself and my families needs. I think this pregnancy threw me into a tailspin. Please don't misinterpret that as saying that I am not over the moon excited about this little blessing because I am! I was pretty miserable my entire 1st trimester and leading into the first several weeks of the 2nd trimester. Enter week 15 through the current and I started to panic about everything that I no longer have and need to care for a newborn. I obsessed about taking inventory of what I had remaining and started hitting garage sales & the kids consignment sales hard. If any of you are still with me I will now share the #1 reason I have fallen off the blogging stratosphere. Life with kids can be tough. I mean really tough! I have two beautiful, wonderful, God fearing children, but those two have a little bit of the devil living in them :) I do not recall going through the struggles with Gabrielle that we are currently facing with Dawson. He was our child who never rocked the boat in the sense of getting into things he shouldn't, disobeying or discrediting authority, etc etc. Starting about three weeks ago that all changed for us. We jokingly and affectionately call him Pistol Pete or Dawson the Destroyer, but let me tell you he fits the names. There have been periods throughout the recent weeks where I frequently hear myself say out loud "Dawson, I am not playing your games right now," "Dawson, we said no and no means no now get down, shut the door, come inside, etc," "I HAVE HAD ENOUGH!" "Do you want me to swat your bottom?" "If I hear those potty words come out of your mouth again, you will get vinegar on your tongue" (this one always gets his attention!). You get the point. Many of you may be thinking this is normal 2 - 3 yr old behavior. I beg to differ with you. I shared with my women's Bible study group that I am contemplating scheduling a consultation with a child psychologist to establish if this is a true clinical case of sensory disorder or adolescent obsessive compulsive behavior. I could share sooooooo much more on this topic, but will spare you reading a book. Just know that I am still crazy in the love with the kid and that we have more good/great times of loving and sharing in the day than we do the bad. It is just that the bad tends to be really bad right now. We will be traveling this weekend to NW Iowa to spend time with some people that are very near and dear to us. I would ask for prayers that we have a smooth, tantrum free weekend. I am concerned as anytime we travel our kids schedules are compromised, they don't get the luxury of sleeping in their own beds and they tend to get over stimulated by the activities and surroundings.
Since this post has primarily focused on our struggles with our little man I will leave you with a handful of pictures from his 3rd birthday which we celebrated this Tuesday the 21st. Enjoy!
Please, please leave me a comment letting me know you have stopped by so I know someone out there is still reading this blog and if you have any psychologist referrals or recommendations on behavior modification I beg you to share.

"Look, I am 3!"