Thursday, July 31, 2008

Some Days I Don't Like My Kids

Perhaps I am a bad mom. It wouldn't be the first or last time I have had or heard that thought. But yesterday I didn't like my kids. Not even a little. It started out rough and it just got worse and worse. They were being mean to one another, disrespectful to me, and downright contrary. I had tried my fair share of punishing: time out, bedroom, corners, even spanking.

Travis got home to the two boys being in their bedroom screaming bloody murder. He looks at me and asks do you want me to get them. I inform him that no I do not want him to get them; they are in time out. The rule typically is how ever old you are is the amount of minutes in your room you have to sit quietly and think about what you did wrong.

Well Wyatt decided it was a good time to jump on his bed. Another no no in our house. I go up to move him to the corner, whereupon he does the limp boy puddle of water stunt. He refuses to stand in the corner. I spank him. So now he is standing but screaming. I calmly tell him that once he stands there quietly for five minutes he may come out. I leave the room which starts the screaming madness Travis comes home too. Wyatt hears Travis and is now elevated his screaming yelling, "Daddy, I need you - help me - save me" and the likes thereof.

This yelling lasted over thirty minutes. All the while I am just trying to ignore it. Issac comes down shortly thereafter, but returns just as quickly on another infraction. Bella starts telling me how I should be doing things. I let her know I can do all the mommying myself and that she should just keep her mouth shut. She decides to go up to her room herself because I have hurt her feelings.

It is now Travis, Me, and Kody at the dinner table. I am frustrated as you well imagine. Travis looks at me and says..."they are just being kids." I explain to him that it is easier said when he deals with it for a half an hour versus nine hours already today. I of course lose it and decide to leave. I come back quickly realizing that I have just behaved as poorly as my kids having a hissy fit of my own sorts.

After much rigamaroo we all eat. I just want to have minimal contact until bedtime as I am done, feedup, and finished. They continue to misbehave although not nearly as bad as before. I think they sense I am trying to restrain my anger. I happily put them to bed. Thinking I do not like these kids. I do not like my kids. What has happened here today.

After a lot of time passing and my unwinding to some degree and their sleeping peacefully for a couple hours, I slip into their room at midnight or a little after. I lay in bed with each of them smelling their little smells of dirt and soap and sweat mixed, an anomaly only kids have. I listen to their slow soothing breaths. I feel myself calm down completely and realize that I am in love with each of my kids immensely. Maybe I didn't like them that day, but tomorrow they will wake up and it will be a new day. And hopefully all of it will be better. And on the off chance that it isn't, I summoned all heavenly powers that be, Heavenly Father, and told him that I was a terrible, weak, and impatient mother and that I needed his help to like and love my kids. As for far it hasn't been too bad. I'll take it.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Golden Birthday

On July 27, I turned 27 so yes that is a golden birthday for all who are uninformed. It wasn't till I was in college that I learned all about this nonsense, and two months ago that Travis learned all about it. Well he put two and two together and voila, we had a golden celebration.

Yes he mocked me incessantly, but that is how he shows his love. So I enjoyed a gold tablecloth, gold cups, forks, bowls, napkins, etc... I had gold cards made by the kids and last but not least he got me my very own golden crown. The night before we went out to dinner and to see Mamma Mia. The actual day we had family festivities and dessert. Thanks for the bag Mindee, when you said you had something I suspected it might be a purse. You rock.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Kids Say

So thanks to inspiration from Lindsey's blog I once again went to the geneology website or whatever. They have a link where you upload a picture and they do a face scan and compare to celebrities to see which onces you most look like. Well true to form I always seems to be paired to male celebrity faces.

Later in the evening our family went to Five Guys, it's amazing. Go eat there. Anyway on the way there I made a joke about looking like man. Bella said you don't look like a man you just sound like one. Well I guess that solves that.

Friday, July 25, 2008

One Name

It is interesting to me how much this topic has come up this week in my life. It came up with some friends last Thursday, another group of bookclub friends on Tuesday, once again with Nicole's insightful blog yesterday morning, and last night with my another group of friends. And except for that first one last Thursday not once have I brought it up. It tells me that there is a movement taking place still that continues to manifest itself daily for people if not everywhere than at least in our nation.

No one act is going to define feminism for me and I find that a specific action done in the spirit of feminism typically is selfish and offensive to others around. Yet last night a story was related to me of a fairly recent wife who decided with the help of her future sister-in-law that she would not be taking on the last name of her new husband. I don't know what her reasons were and therefore this experience is not about her, but about women who struggle to find equality in life. When I got married I too debated the merits of the traditional last name change. I considered changing, hyphenating, and remaining the same. Each had its advantages and disadvantages truth be told. But for me the decision was made in that it would be a slap in the face to my husband -the person I love most, a rejection of his family heritage in favor of my own, the act of remaining clearly defined and seperate despite commiting to join together and let no man put asunder. It would be a confusion to my kids who may not understand why Mommy doesn't share the last name of everyone else in the family. And although there was a part of me sad, thinking I would be leaving my past behind, I have found that I am still as Graver as I have ever been. The blood within me has not changed nor have the characteristics and attributes that I have both genetically received and intrinsically learned. My husband offering his name to me was not in the attitude of subjugation or submission so why not make it easier on everyone, myself included, and accept his gift.

Feminism for me is about equality in life not sameness in living. Clearly there should be concern about human equality no matter what differentiates us whether race, religion, or gender. And despite its simplicity "The Golden Rule" seems to solve this problem inherently. Treat others as you want to be treated. No one wants their desires, dreams, and goals ranked lower on a symbolic totem pole than others. And it seems reasonable to claim that the time where women were objects to be traded, bartered, or used - just a step above slaves in my estimation - we as a culture were saying that one person was not as important as another. We were systematically ranking human life. And that to me seems unkind and hurtful. Being a feminist is not about wanting everything a man has or has the oppurtunity to have, but about wanting what is right and best for you as decided by you. And if you need more insight than "The Golden Rule" to lead you on your journey of enlightenment read the book "Leadership and Self Deception". Although not essentially about femisnism it hits upon this concept of ranking human life.

I want to be a women with all of my inherent strengths and I don't want to confuse that. I want to feel important, needed, and valued not because I am a women, white, or Mormon but because I am human and a child of God. On a final selfish note: I don't need other "feminist" women making my life harder by swinging so far in the "feminist movement" that they seem to think they are superior to men. And I don't need the likes of some men huffing and puffing when they hear the word feminism as if it is a personal affront on their manhood.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Spurned to Think

This is a rebuttal to Nicole's Thoughtful Thursday entry. I started to comment and upon getting wordy decided it needed a blog of its own. See her blog for context.

As for my two cents, I have nothing but sympathy and sorrow for a group of girls who decide to get pregnant in high school together because when faced with the prospect of no future in college or even working, a dying - next to ghost town from what I understand, to have a group of friends all in the same place in life and situation may seem like the best idea. Although naive and not well thought out, I can understand the need to try and plan a future. And my heart hurts that for them this seemed like the best they could hope for.

It is then that I am filled with gratitude for all I have instead of my typical look at what I lacked growing up. I had a family that offered me ideas about what I could have and make for myself. They gave me a skill set so much stronger than I ever imagined, and they offered me a chance at college and leaving small town life to see if there was something else better for me. I feel joy that although I was a scared girl - from somewhere I got the courage I needed and left home for college in a different state with a different culture.

More than anything I have happiness in knowing what I know. Perhaps without the gospel truths grounding me in life, I too when faced with a hard future would pick something not as wise not even knowing it is lacking because of my limited experience and insight. Maybe their decision wasn't well thought out, and eventually they will probably learn about all the things that they should have known before making such a rash decision, but I harbor no hard feelings towards these girls. If anything I hope that they learn together that life is and can be more. Maybe they learn about their divinity and someone shares something with them that will forever change their outlook. I only hope happiness upon them because the road ahead will likely be hard and so to have someone cheering them on might just make a small difference.

As for the topic of feminism, I too feel passionately about this and so...stay tuned for tomorrow I will convey my thoughts as best as my incompetance with words will allow me to.

Explain It To Me

I may not be the smartest person in the world. But sometimes I just don't get it. Can anyone please explain to me what would possess a four year old boy to decide to put popcorn kernals in the ground hole of an electrical outlet? Or a six year old girl to decide to sweep up a tie thus rendering a perfectly working vacuum to be useless. And all this before ten o'clock.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


An Original Haiku:

sister, of my blood
your life is celebrated
in word forever

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I Am White

Now I realize that this is a news flash to most of you. But this is something I knew but was still unprepared for. Yesterday with the promise of another sweltering day ahead of us, I got the kids in their swimsuits and sunblock and sent them out to play in the sprinklers. When the baby awoke I got him up also put sunblock on him since his skin is nigh on to translucent, made the kids lunch, and then took it all outside to have a picnic. I went out to eat with them wearing my capris and tee shirt.

I am semi tan, not very tan, because when I am really supposed to get exposed to the sun in a lounging manner. Yesterday though I yanked my capris up to my knees thinking that my fat calves if tan would at least look a little more slender in my skirts on Sundays. So I ate lunch with the kids and watched as afterwards they played for a bit. Wasn't very long perhaps an hour. But several hours later I realized my mistake. I had not put sunblock on me. And I was feeling and seeing it. The red burn on the insides of my knees to ankles region was now going from a red to slightly purple hue.

True to form they were scorching hot the rest of the evening and stinging despite my aloe application on the hour. I am very familiar with sunburn having been white my whole life, but for some reason I had a memory lapse yesterday. I have a feeling I won't be having any more of those for a while on this subject anyway.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Memory Tag

1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Bring It On Again

Saturday night Travis and I got the kids in bed and decided to find a movie on to watch. There wasn't much on and I knew he would fall asleep within minutes anyway and so we decided to watch Bring It On Again. For those of you who aren't familiar that would be the sequel to Bring It On, a cheerleading movie. As I suspected he did fall asleep right away.

But for me I was totally enthralled. I mean never has there been so much depth and content in a movie. And the actting was amazing, I'm really quite surprised that no one got any type of movie award (Golden Globe, Oscar, Academy Award, etc...). Not only that, but it was so realistic. Truly I felt like I could relate to this story and the characters. Who wouldn't fall in love with a scraggly DJ after meeting him once. And to be honest I was surprised to find that the original actors didn't sign on for this second go at the movie. Truly Kirsten Dunst and crew's careers would have benefitted from this writing. Lastly I can't believe that they didn't have the lead take off her clothes and parade around mostly naked more than she did. Because who really wears clothes anyway. They are just a hassle. And quite frankly it's a fact of life that sometimes when you take off too tight of a shirt, your bra will slip up too and unleash a flap of boob trapped perilously inbetween. So it only stands to reason that we should show that on the movie too.

About ten minutes into it I never thought I should go to bed and get some sleep instead of watching this. No. I never thought I would regret the decision to keep watching trading brain cells for entertainment. No. And boy was I right to not think those thoughts. And so I encourage each of you to find this movie, seek it out, and watch it. It will not be the worst movie you have ever seen in your life, ever, in it's entirity. No.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Foggy Brained

So last night I stayed up till 3:30. No great reason really, just reading. This morning I couldn't function when I woke up at 8. Looked and looked in dishwasher for a bottle I knew was in there, but couldn't find. Only to see it in there after a third or fourth check. This just doesn't happen to me. Dozed while reading scriptures, dozed while the kids ate breakfast and none of these times were intentional. Man I am not as I once was; night owl, no need for sleep, crazy energy filled, alert minded girl. All I felt this morning was foggy brained and tired.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Touche Little One

It's a little known fact that Issac is a busy body. So when I happened upon this little mess I shouted for Issac to come here. But he surprised me by "thud, thud, thudding" down the stairs. So who could have made this mess, surely not Bella or Wyatt - they know better. A little exploring answered the riddle of who drug the toilet paper from the roll out of the bathroom, out into the hall, around into the kitchen, and through the next door into the office...dun, dun, dun...Kody. And there he sat ripping off tangled pieces. I guess I have just entered the totally mobile Kody phase (10 months), despite his not walking. Books are always ripped off my book shelves, toilet paper is continually being dragged off if the door is not shut, and paper is being stolen from the paper shredder and drug all about the house in messy bits and pieces that are half gnawed. Touche little one for tricking me into thinking it was Issac once, but it won't happen again. I am now aware of your tricks.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Ever Wonder???

Ever wonder what five hundred and seventy dollars worth of groceries look like? Yeah me neither. Until last night that is...and for those of you who are curious here it is.
So for some time Travis and I have wanted to beef up our food storage. We knew we needed to do it soon and before we lost all of our motivation. So last night we decided for Family Home Evening we would talk about food storage and what the Prophet expects. Something we had discussed before but did again to get the kids really excited so that when we went shopping for this food they would be excited and cooperate in the store, unlike our typical shopping experiences. Here is a picture of our before dwindling food storage.
Here is an after picture of our additional $570 worth of food added to the food storage. It feels really good. Although to be honest $570 didn't get me quite as much as I wanted. Here's to doing it again in another month when our funds and patience are rejuvenated.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Liberty Bell Broken?

So recently we went to Philadelphia and saw Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. If you didn't know this scan down the page. Anyway ever since my kids have been spotting the Liberty Bell all over: on stamps, random pamphlets, on all fourth of July stuff. Issac shouts Bell, Liberty Bell, Bell cracked, Cracked Liberty Bell slightly reminiscent of Rain Man. Anyway...the other day after Issac went on his cracked liberty bell tirade, Travis asked "How did the bell get cracked, Issac?" To which Issac replied without hesitation, "Wyatt. Wyatt did it." We were dying laughing. Travis then said no Wyatt didn't do it, to which Issac replied, "Bella, Bella did it." By this point we were hysterical. Now when we ask how'd the bell get cracked he says he did it hoping to get that same laugh. Funny kid.

Next update in my life is that I now play on a geriatric volleyball league. So our babysitter the one night was saying how she was sore from playing volleyball. She is nineteen and I asked her where she was playing. She said that she played with the young single adults, but that she knew someone in our ward who played on a city league that she'd get me on.

So I got a call from this other women. She quizzed me about how good I am. Is there a right answer to this. I have no idea what there skill level is so I don't want to say good, if they are super competitive, yet I'm no slouch either. So...I tell her I'm decent. She says okay. Later though she confirms that I play three hits and does a background experience check. What can I say I never played in high school or college, but seriously unless you are playing competitve collegiate ball or better I can manage.

Anyway I go to my first game last night and they are all like 60+ except three other players. There are actually like twelve on our team. You never know who will show. But in the game last night only three of us were under 60 I think. NO lie. Needless to say the grannies weren't bad, but something about moving to get the ball befuddled them, even the one other girl who despite being my age was a little bigger and so not quick on her feet.

Truth be told though I would rather play geriatric ball than no ball at all. So here's to a season with the "Oldies but Goodies" no lie that's our name.