This Where the Nonsense Turns to Makesense

..A large family working to perfect our sweet skills: Loving others, making an impact, parenting on purpose, living simply, and embracing sarcasm.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

First Day of School and Some Other Beeswax

Sam I Am and I stayed home today with The Man while these and the rest of our hooligans attended their first day of school. While Elijah and Layla Grace have been to school before, this was Addison's  first round of elementary school. The bottom picture is an exact likeness of the happiness she felt minutes before walking into class. Currently, she is bleary eyed as she reads me a story about a blue monster from Sesame Street. I have never seen her so exhausted. So cute.
Here are the top ten highlights of my day:
  1. Addison's smile before class
  2. My children's enthusiasm at being in school
  3. Finding out each of my kids have pretty great teachers, whom they each love
  4. Eating breakfast and lunch with just The Man and Sam I Am
  5. Cleaning things in my house that stayed clean after I touched them
  6. Finishing my homework before midnight in a quiet house
  7. The routines now in place because school has started- I heart routine
  8. That Addison is reading to me
  9. Everyone is tired enough to go right to sleep when their 7:30 bedtime rolls around
  10. It's a repeating cycle

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

"Hey, Cameron. You realize if we played by the rules right now we'd be in gym?" Ferris Beuller

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Speaking of Beef Jerky (or boys)

Here are mine: Elijah is going to be a fifth grader, and Samuel is going to be a kindergartener. Sigh.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Our Boys (and Girls, Too)

Sometimes I read a book that gets me fired up (to serve) and I want people to read it. This time I am reading Bringing Up Boys by Dr. James Dobson. I like him. Probably because my mother read all of his books when I was a kid and raised us according to much of his advice, so it is familiar. Also, because I have seen his advice change parents, including myself and my mother, and our approach to kids.
This morning I was reading about boys and their self image and how vastly different the men these boys become can be. I have personally heard testimony of a grown man who suffered with eating disorders and self image issues to the extent of considering suicide. There were other struggles beside body image, but when I look at what a solid man of God this guy is, it proves to me that satan can tempt anyone in to believing these nasty lies. He is subtle.
I am pretty sure that is the devil's forte: subtlety. He gets us to believe before we even realize we are believing HIM. It brings up the question: Why do we go round and round with God and His word before we will begin to consider it, but we take what the father of lies tells us at a mere whisper?
The passage I read today was wrought with statistics of boys and violence, abuse, abusing, drug and alcohol addiction, and every other devastating path parents are terrified to consider. Herein lies the problem.
I get these stats. I get that so many of them stem from boys from seriously jacked up homes, so bottom line, these boys didn't stand a chance. What really gets me aggravated are the boys who come from solid homes, two loving and present parents, happy homes. The ones who kill themselves in 8th grade because of bullying at school and didn't know how to cope.

It isn't enough as parents to pray away what scares us in our children and their futures. WE MUST EQUIP OUR CHILDREN TO DEAL.

I am a huge believer in prayer. Come over for coffee sometime, and I will give you a time line of events showcasing the answered prayers in my life. It's real. I am also a believer in the brain, skills, gifts, and heart God gave to me. As it turns out, I have things I can teach my kids, so that when they find themselves face to face with that puking vomitous mass the devil they have the words to speak and the know how to deal.

Too many parents fall asleep fearful of the road their child is on or what evils may worm its way into their child's heart. The fact is, we live in the world. Evil is everywhere; you can't run; you can't hide. But you can equip. Does your child know what to do if he/she is being bullied? Does your kid know what anorexia is and what to do if they see it in a friend or someone at school? Does your kid know you love them and consider them handsome/beautiful? Does your kid know what to do if someone in the high school locker room shows them a pornographic picture? Herein lies the second problem.

You have to be brave enough to ask those poignant, probably embarrassing questions.
Here is a transcript of a conversation with Eli a few months ago:
(As we drive in the car alone together.)
Me: So, are you excited to be in fifth grade?
Eli: yes! I am very excited.
Me: The kids in 5th grade are different than fourth grade. Sometimes stuff will come up that may not always be appropriate.
Eli: What? Gross. What?
Me: Well, what would you do if boy asked you to come look at a magazine and when you got there it was of naked people?
Eli: MOMMY! OH MY... WHAT? That's gross.
Me: Yes, but not all boys are raised by our house rules. Some families may not think it's a big deal, or their family members make bad choices and have magazines like those, so the kids find them and bring them to school. What do you do?
Eli: There are magazines like that?
Me: I am not trying to give you ideas of what to spend your money on. I want to know what you will do.
Eli: ew. that is so inappropriate. I wouldn't look.
Me: I am glad to hear that. Because that is disrespectful to you, and to that girl, and that girl's parents who are probably not very proud of her career choice. Is that all you would do? Just not look?
Eli: I don't know. I guess.
Me: Well that's great that you wouldn't look, but maybe your friend doesn't have anyone in his life to tell him that isn't OK. Maybe he is looking for someone to tell him he doesn't have to look at stuff like that to be cool. Can you think of something you could say to him so he knows you still like him for him and that he shouldn't look at magazines or other inappropriate pictures?
Eli: um. Yeah. I could tell him, "hey man, that magazine is gross. You shouldn't look at that either because it's disrespectful. Wanna go ride our skateboards?
Me: That's perfect. Now you have let him off the hook from trying to be cool, you have been a positive influence in his life, and you have now made yourself a safe friend for him. He doesn't have to be someone else; he can be a little kid and ride skate boards.
Eli: OK. Can we talk about something else?
Me: Yep, I love you buddy. I am proud of you. And, last thing, if something like that ever happens, even if you don't make the right choice, you can tell me or daddy.
Eli: I think I will tell Daddy. He will understand.
Me: I am fine with that. (Although, I am a little nervous as to why my son thinks my husband will understand porn talk)

Now, I am not delusional. I am sure Eli will be tempted plenty and not always make the right choices. But, I have done my job as a parent and he is much better prepared when something comes up. I have helped him to pre-think a situation and its outcome rather than having to play clean up or cowering in my bed with fear. I am a mother; translation, I am a warrior. I am prepared to fight for my kids.
And, I know that what I say gets through to my kids. On a car ride with Izzy I asked her if any of the boys at school have wanted to be more than friends, and she casually said a boy had just asked her out. (This is a boy who had come to her because he heard she prayed and his parents were divorcing and he was devastated. She prayed with him and we prayed for him in our family prayers over the next few weeks). I asked her response to his request. She told him it didn't really make sense to be his girlfriend because she wasn't planning on marrying him(a conversation we had previously about dating). Then she invited him to dinner at our house. He came, and it was really great.
He told her he thought she was a little crazy but that he really liked her. They were friends til she switched schools.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Why He is Called The Man

So, once again, my husband is amazing. He worked so hard for the last three weeks to complete a crash course fire fighter's academy. He graduated Friday, and I was left overwhelmed with how God works, not only giving me a man who is simply someone to be proud of at every turn, but God also knew how much we would love being here. As it turns out, we are small town people. Here are some pics of the big event.
This is my kids getting a tour of the fire fighters' museum. Old hoses, turn outs, and fantastic pictures of the city back in the day when horses pulled their water tanks to the fire. The only real let down was the tour guide telling Samuel that he could not jump out of the building onto one of the old school trampolines used to catch people as they jump out a burning building.
And this is Samuel communicating with the machine that will now tell us where to find the last golden ticket and exactly what we can do with a life time supply of chocolate.
Old turn outs. Super cool.
Last time Eli pinned his Daddy. This time Layla Grace asked if she could do the honors. So sweet.
The Man. He is truly a good lookin' man.

This is the fire engine The Man will be riding in. 'Cause he is awesome.
And this is Samuel and the best present he has ever received. I sort of want to buy him a box of these for Christmas. Sort of.
And this is Sam telling his new friend all about it.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Oh My Heck, I Broke My Neck

Okay, not really. But I am in so much subtle pain. I realize some people are in unsubtle pain, which is way worse, but this is my blog. Why would I write about them?
Being here makes me miss my chiropractor; I like to call him Mr. Aric. Neither of us are big fans of Facebook, so I can't drop him a line and say how I miss the way he would twist my neck around like an owl and send me crying from his office. You wouldn't think it's true, but it is. I have had a head ache for at least 21 days. Am I exaggerating you ask? No, no I am probably under estimating in fact.
I visited him just before the big move. My neck was apparently so tense he couldn't get my bones to go back to their originally appointed position. That is just rude of my muscles if you ask me. And why wouldn't you; it's my blog. Haven't we been over this? Don't confuse me; I have a headache.
This may be what I look like now:
Oh, and good news; our insurance doesn't kick in after 30 days. It kicks in at the first full calendar month. I get to wait two more weeks than I thought. MR. AAAARIC!!!!! I may drive back to Reno for an adjustment. That is not a euphemism. Don't make me laugh; I have a headache.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Some Things I Have Learned About Idaho

In Idaho, Addison is not as good at putting on sun screen
The trees here are amazing. Truly
The corn here is DELISH!! For reals. We live around the corner from the Karcher Farmer's Market. They sell unbelievable corn, fruit, veggies, dime store candies, and cinnamon rolls. So. Happy.
There are several restaurants here that have been featured on Food Network. Today we visited Rockies where we pigged right out after a long walk through the Boise Zoo.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Common in My House

I give a direction or make a request.

My son argues.

I want to pluck said son in the neck.

I don't. I give him chores.

He cries.

His life is clearly terrible. Also, sometimes he is just a boob.