Posts Tagged ‘parenting’

Lullaby

Friday, October 7th, 2011

“Lullaby”

By The Dixie Chicks

They didn’t have you where I come from
Never knew the best was yet to come
Life began when I saw your face
And I hear your laugh like a serenade

How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough, is forever enough
How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough
Cause I’m never, never giving you up

I slip in bed when you’re asleep
To hold you close and feel your breath on me
Tomorrow there’ll be so much to do
So tonight I’ll drift in a dream with you

How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough, is forever enough
How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough
Cause I’m never, never giving you up

As you wander through this troubled world
In search of all things beautiful
You can close your eyes when you’re miles away
And hear my voice like a serenade

How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough, is forever enough
How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough
Cause I’m never, never giving you up

How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough, is forever enough
How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough
Cause I’m never, never giving you up
Is forever enough
Cause I’m never, never giving you up

You’re a Stay-At-Home Mom – That’s Your Job.

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

I knew she disagreed with me, but I didn’t realize how much until she singsonged through clinched teeth, “You’re a stay-at-home mom – that’s your job.”

“It’s my job,” I said as calmly as I could, “to clean the blinds because I stay at home?”

It was a fun conversation, at first.  She, a really good friend of mine who shall remain nameless, was saying which household chores she despises, “The kitchen tile is the worst,” she said.  “It’s impossible to clean all those little divots.”

“I hate cleaning the blinds,” I told her when it was my turn.  “I’m seriously considering hiring someone once a month to dust them for me.”

And then, she said it.  The line. 

My blood started to boil.  I mean, anyone who knows me will tell you it’s not like I live in a dirty house.  Quite the opposite, in fact.  I’m kind of a neat freak.  I’m always picking up, scrubbing, folding, cleaning, cooking, and dusting.  I’m sort of obsessive about it. 

But when it comes to blinds,  I. Don’t. Want. To. Clean. Them. 

So, I don’t.  Much.

Here’s the thing:  I’m ‘home’ all day, every day with my boys who are 4 and 3 years old.  And by ‘home,’ I mean we’re never home. 

Ever. 

We have play dates, and lunch dates, and Kindermusik.  We go to museums, parks, and the bouncy house at the mall.  We ride bikes, play soccer, and jump on the neighbor’s trampoline.  We go swimming, run, and feed the ducks.  We dance, sing, and laugh at funny sounds.  I mean, there are days when we leave the house at 9:00am and don’t return until 6:00pm because we’re so busy. 

And that’s how we like it.

I then cook dinner, give the boys a bath, brush their teeth, read them a book, and tuck them in for the night.  Then, it’s 8:30pm.  And that’s when the house chores, for me, begin.

I’m not telling you stay-at-home moms or working moms anything you don’t know.  Our lives as mothers are busy.  Really busy.

But here’s what I believe is my ‘job’ as a stay-at-home mom:  to raise healthy, happy, and well mannered little boys.  And while I’m ‘home’ all day, every day, I choose to spend my time playing, exploring, and learning with my boys because I know, in a flash, they’ll be engulfed by school, sports, and friends.

Here and now is my time with my boys. 

I don’t believe it’s my ‘job’ to clean the blinds.  And if I want to hire someone to dust them, I will. 

“Oh Well, She Wasn’t Going to be Your Friend Anyway.”

Monday, April 18th, 2011

“Look mommy,” my 4-year-old says while pointing to a girl with a red bow in her hair, “that’s Mary!”

I’m not exactly sure who Reichen is referring to at first.  I mean, standing in the long line at the mall to see the Easter Bunny the weekend before the holy holiday happens isn’t exactly the best idea I’ve ever had.

“Oh,” I say after finally realizing why he recognizes the little blond beauty, “it’s Mary from preschool.”

And according to Ms. Jill, Reichen’s preschool teacher, Reichen loves Mary.  But so does Simon, Reichen’s classmate and best buddy.  Both boys want to marry her, Ms. Jill says.  But sadly, Mary has told them she’s simply not ready to wed. 

“Hi Mary,” Reichen says softly while waving.

“Hi Reichen,” Mary replies while waving back.

The sweet scene reminded me of my little brother when he was about Reichen’s age.  Every day at school, my brother walked around holding the hand of a blond little girl name Cherice and every now and then, I’d also see him sneak a quick kiss.  My brother may have only been 4 or 5 years old, but the kid had game.  And it appears, my son is following in his Uncle’s footsteps.

“Mommy, can I please talk to the the Easter Bunny with Mary,” Reichen pleads while clasping his hands and hopping up and down.

“I don’t know,” I say.  “We’ll have to ask Mary’s mom.”

Before I even say it, I know the answer.  Mary’s mom and I are not friends.  And I don’t know why.  Every day, I drop Reichen off at preschool and every day, I say a happy ‘Hello!’ to Mary’s mom.  And every day, she never replies.  Ever.

“Hi there,” I say to Mary’s mom.

She looks at me like I have a booger hanging from my nose.

“I’m Reichen’s mom, Tasha,” I trudge on,  “This is Reichen.  Mary and Reichen are in preschool together.”

And here’s the best part,  Mary’s mom didn’t say one word to me.  Not.  One.  Word.  She just turned around, finished writing her check for the Easter Bunny pictures, packed up her kids, and left.  David couldn’t believe it.

“Seriously?  Did that just happen,” he said.

“I TOLD YOU,” I whisper shouted, “I TOLD YOU SHE NEVER TALKS TO ME.  EVER.”

And I had.  I’ve told my husband a million times about Mary’s mom – the one who never says hello.

 “Well,” he replied, “I thought you were exaggerating, but I guess you weren’t.”

We put our conversation on pause so the boys could take their picture with the Easter Bunny, but David quickly pressed play again when we reached the mall play area.

“I can’t believe that woman,” he said.  “I mean, who does she think she is?”

“I don’t know,” I reply.  “I mean, I’ve never done anything but say hello to the woman.”

And our conversation carried on for another couple minutes before I realized little Mary was in the play area, too.  I didn’t see her mom, but I was sure Mary’s dad must be near by and I had no idea what he looked like.

“Oh my gosh,” I stop David.  “Where is Mary’s dad?  Do you think he heard us talking?”

“No,” David replies.  “I’m pretty sure Mary’s Dad is that dude over there.  There’s no way he can hear us from here.”

And as if on cue, Mary calls out to the guy standing right next to us, “Daddy, look at me!”

Seriously.  Mary’s dad heard our entire conversation.

“Oh well,” a good friend of mine said after I later repeated the sordid story to her, “she wasn’t going to be your friend anyway.”

“Good point,” I replied.

And now, I thought, at least I know why.

My Boys Will Need Therapy One Day. I’m Sure Of It.

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

I was so embarrassed I wanted to grab Reichen and run the day I dropped him off at preschool a month  ago.  It was Valentine’s Day and all the kids in his class were instructed to bring cards to exchange with each other.  

And Reichen was so psyched about it.   

The evening prior to the exchange, I watched my 4-year-old excitedly scrawl his name on every single card before carefully folding it in half and applying a heart sticker.  I took Reichen to Wal-Mart to pick them out and after much debate between Toy Story and Lightning McQueen, the race car Valentine’s from Radiator Springs finished first. 

When Reichen was done filling them out, he never took his eyes off me as I gathered and zipped them in his backpack.  He wanted to make sure, he said, that I put them in there right. 

“Good job, Mommy,” Reichen smiled.

“Thanks, buddy,” I said.

I was super excited for my little dude and his very first Valentine exchange – excited, that is until we arrived at school.

I gasped when I saw one mom carrying cellophane bags stuffed with homemade cookies, candy, and heart confetti, with matching curling ribbon on top.  And when a little girl in pig tails skipped by, I heard her mom say all the other kids were going to just love her home crafted butterfly Valentine covered in sparkles and candy.  Not one kid in class brought cards from Wal-Mart to exchange.  Not.  One.  Kid.  Well, one kid did.  My kid.

Reichen didn’t seem to notice he was different from the other kids.  But the parents did, I’m sure.

From that day, I decided I would be better.  Try harder.  I vowed Reichen would be just like all the other kids, especially on holidays.

And I must say, I think I’m doing a really good job.

Don’t you?

Happy St. Patrick’s Day 2011

 

I’m Not Sure How I Knew. But I Knew.

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

I always knew I’d be the mom of two little boys.

I’m not sure how I knew.

But I knew.

I waited for you.

I longed for you.

I dreamed for you.

And now that you’re here, my boys.

I want you to know.

You are the most incredible creatures.

I am inspired by you.

I am amazed by you.

I am blessed by you.

I always knew I’d be the mom of two little boys.

I’m not sure how I knew.

But I knew.

Just the Thought Makes me Sick

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

“What is wrong with you,”  I hear her scream as Reichen heaves open the door to the gym childcare room and Latham and I follow.  “I told you,” she threatens, “if you do not stop acting like an idiot, you’ll be sorry.”  Her teeth are clenched as each hateful word spews from her mouth.  She grips her son’s arm and shakes it as she yells at him.  And he is terrified.  The 6 year old is crying so hard, he can’t even catch his breath.  “Trust me,” she says as she shoves her son into the arms of a waiting childcare worker, “you do not want me to be the one who takes you out of here.”  And with that, she leaves her sobbing son behind.

I realize I’m not breathing when all of a sudden I gulp for air.  I can not believe what I just witnessed and think to myself, if that’s how that little boy’s mother talks to him in public, what happens to him in private?  The thought made me sick. 

And still does. 

I drop to my knees immediately so I can look at my two toddlers in their blue eyes and remind them we never talk like that to anyone. 

Ever

Reichen looks at me and nods.  Latham just looks.

I end up working out with that woman in a group fitness class.  I’m on one side of the room and she’s on the other.  There’s probably 30 people between her and me, and yet, I can’t see anyone else.  As the instructor is telling us to run faster or jump higher, I can’t think about anything other than what just happened.

And I still can’t.

 Today was obviously not the first time I’ve witnessed a parent berating a child.  I was at the grocery store last week scouring the aisles for Rotel, when I heard a mom raising her voice with her child.

“You are a bad girl,” I couldn’t help but her her say, even though I was one aisle over.  “You never keep your hands to yourself.”  By now, I’ve maneuvered my cart around the corner and see who she’s scolding:  a baby.  “Why don’t you ever listen to me?  You’re useless.” 

Now, I don’t know exactly how old her baby was, but I do know that little girl could not have been more than 18 months.  She was so young, she was actually propped on the front seat of the grocery cart still strapped  in her carseat    And already, her mother has deemed her useless.  And I wonder, if that’s how that little girl’s mother talks to her in public, what happens to her in private?  The thought made me sick.

And still does.

I don’t understand people talking like that to their children.  And I don’t want to.  Just the thought makes me sick.

And still does.

 

 

Latham’s Locks

Thursday, April 8th, 2010

LathamHaircut2

 

We told you where we were going when we buckled you up

You smiled and repeated, “Latham get my hair cut?”

 

“Yes,” we replied, “it’ll be so much fun”

“You’ll look just like Reichen when the lady’s all done.”

 

You studied your brother and smiled at him, too

You’d be his carbon copy if it were left up to you.

 

We didn’t know what you would do when you sat in the chair

But you didn’t even flinch and you didn’t even care.

 

When she took out her scissors and cut all your curls

Daddy said your new look would be a hit with the girls.

 

But there’s only one girl and of course that is me

You becoming a big boy is tough on mommy.

 

It’s not just a haircut, you’re making a transition

But no matter what I say, you don’t seem listen.

 

When you look in the mirror you love your new do

Your big boy hair cut looks just perfect on you.

 

I can not believe that we finally did it

But I can’t let it all go, so I kept every snippet.

 

LathamHaircut1

We’re Not Really a TV Family. And By We, I Mean My Boys, Not Me.

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

We’re not really a TV family.  And by we, I mean my boys, not me.  I am totally a TV person.  In fact, my DVR and I are best friends.  I know this because not only have we exchanged BFF necklaces where she wears one half of the gold heart charm and I wear the other, we also spend all of our free time together watching Project Runway, The Housewives of Orange County, and The Bachelor.  It’s awesome.

What’s also awesome:  the power the one program I allow Reichen to watch every night before bed wields over him.  Have you seen The Wonder Pets on NickJr?  It chronicles the adventures of three singing classroom pets:  Linny the Guinea Pig, Ming-Ming Duckling and Turtle Tuck, who travel the world and use teamwork to save baby animals in distress.

wonderPets

I don’t know who makes this stuff up, but who ever it is, commands more control over my son than I do.  No matter how many times I tell Reichen his baby brother doesn’t really like being gagged, tackled, and whipped to the floor,  nothing stops my kid quicker than me threatening him with The Wonder Pets.

Me: “Don’t tackle your brother.  It’s not nice.”

Reichen:“I like to tackle Latham.  He likes it.”

Me:“If you tackle Latham again, you have to sit in time out.”

Reichen:“Okay, Momma.  I’m going to tackle Latham and sit in time out.”

Me:“If you tackle Latham, you have to give me your cars.”

Reichen: “Okay, Momma.”

Me:“If you tackle Latham, you can’t watch The Wonder Pets tonight.”

Reichen: “I can’t watch The Wonder Pets?  Okay, Momma.  I won’t tackle him.”

The  Wonder Pets threat works for everything:  eating veggies, taking a nap, not touching toys at Target.  Everything.  I’m even thinking about writing a book about it as a new technique to parent toddlers.  At play dates, it’ll be the talk of all the moms.

Mom #1: “My toddler is throwing tantrums every time I ask him to eat his peas.”

Mom #2: “Have you read that book about The Wonder Pets technique?”

Mom #1: “No, I haven’t.  Does it really work?”

Mom #2: “It really works.  You should read it.”

Yup, I think it would be a best seller. Maybe I’ll even get on Oprah.  I’m totally going to write it, but first I have to watch Project Runway with my BFF.   Until then, here’s Reichen singing The Wonder Pets theme song. He busted it out on us tonight.  We didn’t even know he knew it.

“Good Job, Momma!”

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

I use a lot of positive reinforcement in our home.  When my 2 1/2 year old little dude finishes lunch, I say “Good job!”  When he helps me put toys away, I say “Good job!”  When he brushes his teeth before bed, I say “Good job!”

Today, I was surprised to learn that my toddler is a fan of positive reinforcement too.

Momma:  “Momma needs to go potty, doodle bug.  Come watch momma use the big boy potty.”

Reichen:  “No.”

Momma:  “C’mon, it’ll be lots of fun!”

Reichen:  “Okay, Momma.”

I’ll kindly spare you the ugly details of the actual event.

Momma:  “Okay, Reichen.  That’s all there is to it.  That was easy, huh?”

Reichen:  “Good job, Momma!”

Momma:  “Thanks, Buddy.”