Saturday, December 17, 2011

Little Ballerina Girl

This blog is mainly used to write/rant about my own personal musings and the big lessons I often take from life's little moments. Today is not about that. Today's post is all for the benefit of one daddy who loves his little girl very much and would have liked nothing better than to have been there for her on her special day. (And you were certainly with us in spirit, babe.)

So here are the details of Sambug's dance recital:

Sammi had a dance rehearsal last week. It was the worst rehearsal ever. For one thing, they didn't have anyone there who knew how to work the soundboard to play the music. (Ummm...that alone made it pretty pointless for us to be there.) But I also had a hard time wrangling the little man who was running up and down the aisles and between the rows of chairs in Soldier's Hall.

At least the costuming part was successful. How precious does she look?!?!

Here she is in front of the stage before show time. She was SO nervous about the stage this time. She kept thinking that she would forget the dance or go too fast. But she did wonderfully :)

---I do have to mention before the video that our little ladybug brought her daddy doll with her tonight so that "daddy could watch her do the dance." She was pretty furious when the instructor tried to make her leave daddy doll in the chair to go on stage. I had to come backstage to calm her down right before her group went on. I almost thought she wasn't going to dance tonight. But she did...thank goodness!----

Also, it would be fair to note here that apparently I do not know how to correctly record video, so the first 30 seconds is missing from the dance. (Did you expect anything differently from me?!?!) I will try to mooch a full video off of one of the other moms for you. Just know that she did amazing the entire time and did not fall over even once. And the kid to watch is the tall one, in case you had any doubts :)

...Okay...I just spent the last 75 minutes waiting for the video to upload here and it didn't. I am trying to upload it for you to check it out on Facebook. Sorry!!!

Lastly, I wanted to include a picture of Sammi after the show. Notice she is holding her daddy doll again :) And just so you know, I did not get any credit for the flowers. She said "she knew they were from daddy, because he knows her favorite color is pink and she is her daddy's favorite ballerina." Well, can't argue with her there :)

I tried to get pictures of little man alone and with his sister to put on here as well, but you know that kid won't stay still even for a minute. I did manage to get one of him with his hand down his pants, but I figured I wouldn't post that one here:) Boys...

I decided that if I had tonight to do over again, I probably would have stuck him in childcare. He kept crying and squirming the entire time. But he learned a new word today--walk. Which meant he wanted me to get up out of the seats and walk him up and down the aisle. Sheesh! But when his sister came up on the stage, he was completely quiet and watched her so intently. He even cheered for her at the end! (I'm sure you heard it.) That kid sure loves his big did we get so lucky with that?!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Monster Mommy

I am such a lucky lady. I have wonderful children whom I adore, a loving husband that can turn even my cruddiest days into happy ones, the most supporting family (from which I was born into AND which I married into,) and I have loyal, loving friends that I can rely on when things start turning sour.

Why then, do I find it necessary here lately to stress myself out to the point of tears??

This afternoon I was talking to my husband on Skype and you would have thought the world had ended. We had been home for about thirty minutes and Jack had managed to crumble crackers all through the front room of the house, wedge crackers in between the cracks in the boards of our entertainment center (his new favorite game,) remove every single DVD from the media cabinet (a close second in the "favorite games" department,) break the leg and antler off of glass reindeer ornament from Nathan's childhood, and Sammi offered him a sugar cookie which he then commenced to crumble and scatter all underneath the Christmas tree and into the tree skirt. In desperate frustration my eyes teared up, I buried my face into my hands, and I let out a muffled "Grrrrrrrr!!!"
(Might I say, this was not the picture perfect family moment I was hoping to create in front of my husband.)

Jack looked up at me and in a similar growling tone said, "Mommy! Roooar!" I wish I could play back his voice for you here. In essence, he was telling me that I sounded like a monster. And that's indeed what I have turned myself into lately.

Meet Monster Mommy--

She is a crazed cleaning machine who snaps at the slightest cracker crumble, juice drip, or muddy footprint. She will cuddle you one instant, and bark at you in the next when you become squirmy and accidently elbow her in the gut. Forbid you cry or fuss at Monster Mommy--she will yell out the dreaded line "Stop being a fuss-butt or I will give you a real reason to cry!" She expects you to be responsible for your things and will not let you cry over a missing or forgotten item--even though she has lost a single pair of sunglasses three times in the same day herself. Monster Mommy will only ask you to do something twice. Asking three times warrants punishment (even though you are only four years old and probably honestly did not hear me the first two times.) Sometimes, Monster Mommy will count to three as a warning, but the numbers come with no "Mississippi's" in between...sometimes they come with no pause of any sort. "123--get your fuss-butt over here and get your spanking!" Monster Mommy yells way more than any mommy should. (Normal Mommy has really been working on comabting Monster Mommy's yelling habit, but every now and then Monster Mommy wins out--usually right before a "123" episode.) Monster Mommy tears up, puts her head into her hands, and says "Grrr" a whole lot.

How do I turn back into Normal Mommy again? How do I let go of this "perfect" notion of how I think things ought to be and just roll with the punches and learn to bend? Suggestions? Anyone?!?!

Today, after witnessing my meltdown and hearing my son roar at me, my wonderful husband offered me advice I am going to take seriously and that I thought I would share with you. Sometimes, you are put in a situation where there can be no such thing as perfect and we have to settle for "good enough."
Can't keep the house spotless? Keep it clean enough.
Can't get the four year old to sit down in front of the computer to talk to Daddy even though she has spent the last thirty minutes crying about forgetting to take her Daddy Doll to dance class? Let her five second conversation with him be enough.
Can't get every single thing you wanted to do checked off your to-do list during naptime? Do what you absolutely need to do and save the rest for another day.

Do whatever it is that you need to do so that you can keep a little bit of your sanity without being growled at by your 20-month-old in the process. And then realize that sometimes, some days will be so crappy that "good enough" is not even going to happen--and that's normal too. And we will all be better off if I can get through those days with as little "grrrr-ing" as possible.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

For My Soldier

Miss you every moment
Love you every second
I may not always need you
But I want you just the same

Happy for a moment
And sad in the next second
Cuz this would have made you smile--
Want to hear your laugh again

Proud of you every moment
Think of you every second
I worry just a little
But then I think of you and smile

So stop for just a moment
Take a break for just a second
And know how much I love you--
Would walk 7000 miles

Just to kiss you for a moment
And to hold you for a second--
The months cannot pass fast enough
I want you here with me

Til then I'll miss you every moment
And love you every second
And fall asleep each evening
And see you in my dreams
We all love you, Soldier.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

A New Kind of Christmas

We all have heard the Christmas story:

The most important baby of all time--king of heaven and earth--comes to live among us as a servant. He has an ordinary family with a humble background. He is born in a lowly manger. He lives 33 years and saves the whole world.

But this year, I have looked at Christmas and the Christmas story so much differently than years past. This year, I have realized that it's all about a baby..."6 pound 7 ounce baby Jesus"...
and Christmas-time is one big baby shower. I admit, this might sound a little frivolous, so let me go into detail here.

---But first, let me add in a brief sidebar: yes, I know Christmas is a celebration of Jesus's birth, so it would be more appropriate to call it a birthday party. But birthdays only last one day, and let's face it, the Christmas season usually begins in stores around October and it feels like it goes on forever. Heck! Some people leave the lights up on the outside of the house and celebrate it all year long!
We anxiously wait on and celebrate the arrival of our babies for nine months (or more if you are one of the poor mothers whose pregnancy goes past the due date.) That's why I'm opting to call it a shower.---

As a mother, I am totally aware of what blessings my children are. They are the greatest part of my whole life. They have given me a new purpose and goal. They have totally refreshed my perspective of the world. They have brought me more joy than I ever knew I could have.
As a mother, I am also totally aware that every single baby is a miracle. I am still completely in awe of how so many babies are born perfectly, wonderfully healthy. They are built from nothing--the chance collision of two cells--and take only nine months to grow into a complete human being. That is facinating! Babies definitely deserve to be celebrated!!!

Jesus Christ did not receive near the grand reception He deserved.

When his mother announced she was pregnant, she was shunned.
I was not married when I was pregnant with my first child, either...but thank goodness I was not shunned. My pregnancy was celebrated. I had wonderful friends who threw me a party and showered my child with gifts. I had visitors and people who fed me while my father's child had to leave for training. I was in constant, complete, loving care.

When Jesus was ready to be born, his mother had no where to go.
This is something I sort of identify with. When I went into labor with Samantha, I apparently decided to have my baby on the same night as every other expecting mother in the tri-county area. There was a low-pressure storm system that had moved in, and we all started going off like oven-timers...the storm was moving in, and the buns were ready :) I was having contractions 3 minutes apart by the time I got into the room, but the nurses were ready to send me back home until my contractions were "closer together." There was no room for me at the inn!! Thankfully, my husband did what he does best. He took a poor, sweet nurse outside into the hallway, and I don't know what he said to her, but I do know that I didn't have to go anywhere after their "friendly chat."

Jesus was born in a manger, wrapped in rags, and laid in a bed of hay. He was visited by shepherds and three wise men.
Samantha was born in a hospital under the care of trained professionals, where she was wrapped in a warm blanket and laid in a plastic bed lined with soft cushion. She received tons of visitors in the hospital--family, friends, and family of friends.

Jesus was given three gifts--gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
Samantha was given more gifts than I can even make a guess at, and her mother was too. And though Samantha didn't receive any gold, her mom made out with some silver.

It is hard for me to think that the King of Kings and Lord of Lords received so little, when my child was treated like royalty. And while Samantha is a princess to me, it seems unfitting that she should have had so much more.

So what are we to do about it? Throw Jesus the best baby shower we can every year to make up for it!

"Joy to the world, the Lord is come!" Here finally is the happieness and celebration Christ deserves. It's like watching Mary announce "I'm pregnant!" on FB and seeing her status get millions of "likes." :)
Christmas cards are invitations to the baby shower.
He was not welcome into the inn, but he makes his way into many of our homes via nativity sets, Bible stories, and Christmas carols.
Gift-giving is our way of showering Jesus with all belongs to him anyway; he is just sharing it again with us.
When gathering with family or friends--whether it be at a home, or a church, or an office party--you are essentially gathering to celebrate the arrival of a baby. Think of it as "visitation hours" in the nursery.

So that's where I'm at right now. And I don't know if you're there with me, but I will tell you this...
It sure is hard to be "bah-humbug" when you realize that Christmas is just one big celebration honoring the arrival of the most blessed baby there ever was.

I wonder what Mary would have thought about a diaper cake--is that what the fruit cake is for? ;)