Friday, May 14, 2010

Crabs and Comfort

It was one of the coveted picnic locations. A covered picnic table, a view of the lagoon and canal, and a short jaunt from the beach. For the day, it would serve as base camp.

Moments after the gear was dumped onto tables and benches, the kids + Hubby made a beeline for the lagoon. Youngest was immediately distraught by the amount of life that could be found under her feet. At each of Boy's new discoveries: Horse Conchs, misc feeder fish her unease increased. But the topper was the discovery of various crabs. The lagoon is a virtual crab nursery. At this not-so-rare and amazing discovery Boy set out to catch every one he could nab or lure. Youngest refused to place even a piggy within striking distance of pinchers she imagined were awaiting her first misstep. Soon cousins were on-hand to aid in crab catching. Buckets filled with water and misc. crabs decorated our base. Taking pity on his sister, Boy offered her a bucket of Conchs (think big sea snail) which she enjoyed enormously. 

There was much fun to be had by all. Adults were able to visit while enjoying the escapades of the youngsters. Trips were made to the beach where everyone swam and kids only buried one another in sand sarcophagi (no adult volunteered - having learned the discomfort of sand trapped in suits long ago) There was kayaking, and the enjoyment of the company of others. A day of sun and fun sure to lead to an early bedtime.

Back home after all wildlife had been returned to its sanctuary, the kids were cleaned and nestled into bed.
About an hour after final good-nights were given, a slow steady creak announced the opening of Youngest's door. Bleary-eyed and unfocused she stumbled into the living room.
me: "What are you doing up honey."
youngest: "I can't sleep."
me: thinking *obviously* "Why not?"
youngest: "I'm uncomfortable with crabs."

yup, that would do it, I thought. However, have no fear; Youngest didn't then nor has she at any time actually have crabs. She merely was considering crabs and how they could come out of the water, grow to the size of the minivan, and destroy her family. Bless her innocent little heart. and curse her bad mommy's potty brain that made the leap and had to bite her lip to keep from giggling.

Now, it's Friday! Yippee! So, you know what to do: click this link and head over to DadBlogs to read some great stories by moms and dads who probably don't have their thoughts in the gutter.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

This n That

In honor of Thursday this post with be reflecting the jumble of thoughts that hit as the work week nears its end but still refuses to die.
~ A boy had come calling to talk with Teen a few times. She politely blew him off both times. When teased questioned about her lack of interest, she responded to the effect that he looks like a good kid, but dad and I wouldn't like him. Last weekend I saw him outside the local grocery store, looking for cigarettes! Lesson: Don't judge a kid by his haircut and clothes!
~ We are getting a litter of puppies vaccinated and certified today. There were eight in this very unexpected litter. We had spent 3 weeks listening to daddy-dog cry and mommy-dog looking sad while we kept them completely apart. One morning they managed to sneak off together and we have been paying the price for 8 weeks. Lesson: Love finds a way. (Daddy-dog is now fixed and mommy-dog has an appt.)
~ I broke-down and bought a new bed recently. After scouting some ads hubby and I walked into a store, completely unaware of the procedure. We haggled, negotiated, almost walked out and ended-up with a floor model at a far more reasonable price. Lesson: Contrary to my previous belief, buying a bed is NOT like buying a shirt. It is far more like buying a car - yuck!
~ Speaking of cars, we had to buy one of those this week too! Yep - things are crazy here. After leaving Hubby's car for the junk yard at 200+K if it were a horse it would have fallen down dead we replaced his car. Today, I get to drive it - so he can take the puppies in the van. Yea, me!
As anyone can see, I need the weekend to come. If for no other reason than to clear out the cobwebs in my mind. Hope the rest of your week is peaceful!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Tenacity - Mom's Gift

"Your mom is always so organized and calm. Did she ever get mad when you were a kid?" These are the types of statements I hear about my mom when I take my kids to their pediatrician. (See, my mother is my pediatrician's accountant, which is very helpful when she needs to run one to the dr. for me.)
I always say she IS just a great mom. Then Mom and I laugh about how people perceive one another. After 15 years, it is pretty much a standing joke. Let me explain. My mother had six kids. Having half that many myself, let me assure you, raising kids without ever yelling is impossible unless you are physically unable to speak.
And my mom was a yeller. To the point where she would yell at you, leave the room, think of another trespass, and yell at you from another room or even another level of the house! Not. Exaggerating. 
Heck, the woman stands 5'2 and teen boys were terrified of her wrath my husband included.
The ability to seem imposing is one of the gifts imparted to me. There is no way I could keep 40+ 7th grade boys in line each day without screaming if I didn't have some skill in the fine art of seeming to be more scary than I am.
Her ability to pick herself up after the collapse of a 20 year marriage and return to school was phenomenal. But even more so, was the fact that she did this while 3 children were still at home needing care and 2 were in college. I can even remember sitting in the college lounge doing homework while she was in class mostly I remember the hot chocolate vending machine.(she went on to own her own accounting firm)This model may be the reason I was able to return to college and complete my degree barely a week before Youngest was born. 
She is a feisty, strong woman who made it known to her children that there was nothing a little hard work and a lot of commitment wouldn't achieve. She lead by example and with a ton of love. For that I am eternally thankful. Happy Mother's Day!

Friday, May 7, 2010

The Ants Go Marching

It was Teen's spring concert event. She required an early drop-off, just minutes away. The kids were eating, an early and easy meal of frozen pizza and applesauce, Dad was squeezing in his gym-time. So, I left Boy and Youngest at the table to run Teen to pre-concert rehearsal. Simple, multi-need family juggling. 

Upon returning, 15 minutes later, Youngest is scootering in the driveway. Her face is pulled down in a frown, announcing to the world at large there is a problem in her realm. She waits for me and being the obliging mother I ask what is going-on. 

Bravely she begins to tell me about her hatred for ants. "THEY DESTROY EVERYTHING!" She exclaims as the sobs begin. Great gulping sobs of sorrow and pity. 
Wondering if she spied a dead bird serving as a meal for a nearby colony, I ask her why. "They KILLED a caterpillar!" As she collapses into my arms, looking for relief from the cruelness of nature. 

I console and cajole her, as I try to scarf down a slice of pizza while comforting and picking a dress for her. Yes, moms should be given attachable limbs at the birth of their first child.  Just as I feel she is beyond the worst, may be listening to me remind her that ants eat dead things, "They're garbage collectors, the  caterpillar was surely dead," Boy notices the commotion playing out in front of him. In an effort to console, he tells her, "I saved it. I got the ants off and put it in the grass." Bless his heart. I know he was trying merely to appease her. But now there are torrents of tears streaming down her face. Because she knows a dead caterpillar, and that bug was dead. 

A search of the area ensues. I left this to the kids, as I really needed to eat something before we left in 3.5 minutes. No caterpillar miracle had been worked. So, I slyly changed the subject, by pulling out Youngest's favorite dress. Threw it over her head and took the sniffling, teary-eyed one and Boy to meet-up with family and listen to a delightful evening of strings. Ahhh parenting.

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