Thursday, August 30, 2012

For My Daughters and Daughters-in-Law

Dear Daughters and Daughters-in-law,

I pray that someday you will have a quiverful of clever, creative, energetic children.  They will be your life's work and will teach you and bless your lives in so many ways.  At times you won't quite know what to do with them.  You might think of me, your mother and mother-in-law and wonder how I did things in raising my children.  If I am wise like my own dear mother-in-law, I will offer you no advice whatsoever.  I will conveniently forget all my child raising years and tell you you are doing a wonderful job.  I'll let you pray about it and support you in however you decide to do things.  But I won't tell you what to do.

If I'm wise.  It's going to be hard for me to be that wise, but I'll try.

But if you really want to know what it was like around here when my kids were young, you can read this post and get a pretty good idea of the tone of the house-- the good and the rest.  Then you can see what I did wrong and "never do that with your kids", and hopefully a few things I did right.

Snapshots of the day:

-- Two days ago my friend gave us 3 boxes of Captain Crunch cereal she had stored in her basement that she bought on sale and were about to expire.  They are gone.  Mmmm, candy for breakfast!  We don't have a lot of sugar cereals but when they make their way into the house everybody wants in on the action.

--George subsists on chow mein noodles, roasted peanuts, frozen peas, and dry frosted mini wheats.  He's a heavy drinker, asking for bottles way too often.  Yes, he's 2 and he still drinks out of a bottle.  I don't believe in bottle-rot-teeth.

--My whole family might suffer death by chicken and rice.  When I run low on dinner ideas I resort to variations on a theme of chicken and rice.
I'm sick to death of chicken and rice.

--Clark was asked to be the pianist at the Stake Youth Standards Night last night.  He did a great job with his songs, but he was pretty nervous to be playing "on a larger stage".  I told him not to worry because if there was a need to worry, I would worry way before he needed to.  I'd let him know if he needed to worry.

--Bethany is eleven.  Clark explained to her that the reason she was being grouchy was because she was eleven and she was right in between being a kid and a teenager.  He reassured her that when she came all the way into teenage-hood it would be better.

--Last year I swore off soccer.  I don't like soccer and I've never been good at it.  My kids aren't good at soccer either.  There, I said it.
Guess who we just signed up for soccer again?  Cannon, Faith and Elinor.  I have no idea how we're going to fit 3 soccer schedules into our family schedule.  Abe and I's plan is to "make it work".
That's my plan a lot.  Make it work.  That's a pretty good plan.  At least it's an optimistic plan.

--I spent several hours today finishing a book for my neighborhood book club this evening.  It was North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell.  I did not love it, but I did love the chocolate cake we had for refreshments.  There is a severe price to be paid for spending several hours of the day reading a book.  The price will be paid tomorrow morning as I try to catch up on dishes, laundry, cleaning, checking school work, and vacuuming peanuts and chow mein noodles.

--The kids and I also finished the last couple of chapters of To Kill a Mockingbird.  So great and the older kids were enthralled.  I LOVE reading books together.  Last night and this morning, as I plowed my way through North and South, the kids grabbed their books and joined me for a read-a-thon.  Clark read Hunger Games, Bethany read Percy Jackson's Lightning Thief, Elinor read The Tale of Despereaux, and Faith did puzzles.  She's not so comfortable reading on her own, but she is making great progress.

--I need more sleep.  I'm happiest on 9 hours a night, but I'm regularly going on 7 hours a night.  Not enough.  But there are so many good, needful things to do.  Many good things which are best done while little ones sleep.  That's how I know I'm not depressed.  When I've been depressed I don't really want to do anything.  When I'm happy there aren't enough hours in the day to do all the things I'd like.
So I'm happy I'm happy, but I'd really like some more sleep.

--Elinor hurt her leg somehow today.  I don't know how serious she's wounded, but she did resort to army crawling around the house to relieve any pressure on her leg.  Clark took it upon himself to convince the family that she was overreacting.  This, of course, induced copious tears from a senstive nine-year-old.   She called every friend she has in the neighborhood and no one could play today.  Not her best day. 

--Bethany had a violin lesson today and then plead her case to be excused from practicing because she had a hard lesson.
No.  You still have to practice.
Tears from the eleven year old- "Mom, All I do is eat, sleep, drink and poop violin!"
Ouch!  That must be painful.

-- Cannon is about to give up napping.  Big sigh.  But I love to put him to bed for naps and at night because we do crazy kisses and crazy hugs.  I kiss him like crazy all over his cheeks and he squeals in delight and I can't get enough.  He's not really going to turn 5 next year is he? 

Now look, I've done it again!  It's past 11 o'clock and I'm only going to get 7 hours of sleep!  Someday if when you're exhausted from chronic lack of proper sleep and not enough hours to do all you need to do, you might call me in tears to ask advice on something with your children  I probably won't remember anything I wrote tonight.  But if you read this you'll know that at one time I knew exactly how you feel.

1 comment:

Gabrielle Kim said...

I loved everything in this post! I was laughing like a crazy lady until I got to the part about CANNON still taking naps. At that point my my laughter took on an evil jealous tone and I was forced to quit reading. Naps at 4 and 5? My kids cut them out at 2. I bet your kids even slept at church? Some moms have all the luck...