Friday, March 29, 2013

Why Dad gets all the credit, and Mom is a slacker

I know that scouting is not just a Mormon thing. But it is a huge deal in our culture. Most boys participate, many of them going on to earn their Eagle Scout.

They start out in cub scouts, working their way through Wolf Den, Bear Den and then Webelos. When they turn 11 they move onto Boy Scouts.

When you complete all the requirements for Webelos, you go to you last Pack Meeting, and if you've worked very hard you also will have earned the Arrow of Light.

Well, Charlie, and Jeff, worked very hard and Charlie earned his Arrow of Light. Traditionally, the boys pin the pin they earn with each advancement onto their moms. See photo:)

However, while I play a role in helping him earn his Wolf and Bear badge and pin ( I was his den leader for a while) Jeff really was the one who helped Charlie earn his Webelos badge and pin. His den leaders obviously play a big role as well since they head up weekly activities where the boys can earn stuff.

But throughout the night, and before each time he pinned one on me-one for his Webelos advancement, one for earning his Arrow of Light, he reminded me that Dad helped him, not me. "Why isn't dad getting this instead of you?"

But it's tradition for the moms to get the pin. Why? I don't  know. Maybe it's cuz I drove him to so many things and sewed on his badges. Do you know how NOT easy that is? Maybe it's cuz I have made treats for many pack meetings on his behalf. Maybe it's cuz I'm the one who forced him to go the many times he didn't feel like it. And it was all worth it as he beamed during the special ceremony they held for his Arrow of Light award.

But maybe Jeff and I can just share the pins? I'm not begrudging Jeff his role in this. I KNOW that he was instrumental in helping Charlie, and me, not so much.

But I'm a little miffed at my say whatever he thinks son. His mind obviously just remembers the last few months, and not the years before that.

That's ok. I'm not vengeful. I will just wait until he needs cookies for something, or a ride somewhere, or help finding his scout shirt, and I will remind him that I'm not the one who does those things, dad is.

And he will say, "But dad isn't here. He's at work!" And then I will give a diabolical laugh and throw something at him.

Hee hee.

No really, I am proud of Charlie. He has not naturally love Scouts the way some kids do. I have pushed him and reminded him how much girls like a guy that's an Eagle Scout. And the road to that is lined with Merit Badges and hikes and campouts and other stuff that is work but also a lot of fun. So for him to have worked to get his Arrow of Light is really great. And I'm excited for him to move onto to Boy Scouts now.

But I'm still not going to bake him any more cookies;)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Our boy


Harry Potter-Books and movies



Lord of the Rings-Books and movies

Playing outside with friends

Reading waaaay past bedtime



Bike riding




That's what our boy is made of.

Lots of hot air=loud noises, giggles and whoops of delight. And of course, blowing out 11 candles.

Happy Birthday Charlie. We love you and all that you are!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

What would you give up?

What would you give up or sacrifice in order to have a dream come true?

Obviously, the answer is different for everyone.

Some may give up a good paying job to be able to stay home with their children.

Some may give up cookies and birthday cake in order to be healthier.

Some may go without vacations or fancy cars in order to save for the future.

Some people give up a life of convenience in the city to give their children something better.

Well, I am trying to decide what I would give up in order to have this:

And I think I have the answer.

I will give up my belongings. Most of them anyway.

You see, we need a down payment in order to buy another house. And if you've followed my blog for long you know that extra money doesn't abound in these parts.

But that doesn't mean it's impossible. It just means I have to work a little harder.

So in order to have that house, or one like it-with it's accompanying red barn and creek, I need 15 thousand dollars.

Not a small amount.

But there are little chunks of money coming our way.

And I have stuff. Stuff that doesn't matter in the long run.

What is a kitchen table or sofa compared to 3 acres and sunshine?

What are bookshelves and pictures compared to fruit trees?

What is a television and dvd player compared to country living?

You also know, if you've  been here long, that I have been waiting to give this life to my children. For them and for me.

So what will I give up?

I have no idea if this will work. Maybe we will just end up renting and have no furniture to sit on.

But isn't it worth a shot?

Doesn't God know us and love us and bless us when we show faith and initiative?

I have to believe that He does.

I have to believe that dreams can come true. Cuz otherwise, what's the point of dreaming? And I'm a hopeless dreamer.  I would rather give up my furniture than my dreams.

Can't you just see my children playing happily for hours here? Me too:)

I don't know how this will all work out. I don't know what God's plan for us is at this particular junction in our lives.

But I know I can't give up.


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Enjoying while I can

I saw something yesterday that at first confused me, and then saddened me.

While driving, I was behind a lady in a little green Mazda Miata.

I first noticed her license plate holder that said, "My Miata Moment......No more child support!!!"

I was confused. I don't normally associate women with being the ones to pay child support.

And that's not sexist of me, just traditionally children stay with their mother.

Then I noticed her license plate. It said, "SHEIS18"

Then it all clicked.

This women's daughter turned 18, and since she no longer had to support said daughter, so she went out and bought herself a little sports car.

Fine, she is excited that her daughter can support herself now and so her money is freed up for a 1998 green Mazda Miata.

But to advertise it with a vanity plate and license plate holder?

I tried to imagine the relationship she and her daughter have. I can't imagine it's anything like the relationship I have with my children. I certainly don't expect to be done helping them just because they turn 18.

Why? Here is one example:

This is a picture of my double jogging stroller. I bought it almost 14 years ago right after Julia was born.

I have logged thousands of miles on it. Lost a lot of weight because of this awesome little stroller.

All of my children have sat in it while I ran or walked.

But it is the end of an era. For two reasons.

The first and foremost is that because of my back, I can't push a stroller anymore. Pretty much all I can do is the elliptical. That is getting better though and I expect to feel very recovered in the next 6 months.

But by that time, Nora will be in kindergarten and Henry will be at school all day, and there will be no need for a double stroller.

So I sold it today. And cried on my way home from meeting the gal who has 3 small children. One an infant.


That is how I feel about my children. I am sad that they are growing up.

Example number 2: As we are looking for houses in Ellensburg, I am realizing that Kate will only live under whatever roof we find for 3 1/2 more years.

Then she is either off to serve a mission for our church or to college.

3 1/2 more years is nothing!!!! That is the blink of an eye. I already get teary eyed when I think about not having her here all the time. When I realize that I won't be able to go down to her bedroom and wake her up or sit on her bed and talk to her.

And then a year after her? Julia is gone.

I love my children. I don't relish the thought of them being gone. I really don't.

3rd example: Anne Marie went on a field trip today and it didn't work for me to chaperone this time. I felt so sad as she went to the bus stop thinking that I would miss out on seeing her face as she walked around the Museum of Flight.

And no, that is not mother guilt. That is a true desire to be with my children.

It honestly is amazing that I don't homeschool them. But I know it would be more about me than them.

Example number 4:

This is how Nora went to the bus stop yesterday. How much longer will she put her own outfits together like this? How much longer will be want to sleep with me at night? (Of course Jeff wishes this stage was over already)

She will be 5 in July. In 4 months, my BABY will be 5!!!!!

I am a mess about all of this lately. I know that there are good things about your children growing up, time together with Jeff, grandbabies!!!!

I just don't understand when people celebrate their children leaving. I'm not saying there aren't up sides to having a house to yourself and less of your money leaving your bank account. But at the cost of no more pitter patter of little feet. No more teenage girls laughing. No more brothers wrestling.

So to the lady in the green Miata. I hope you really are happier now than you were when she was home. Which you probably are since you're advertising it to the world.

I don't plan on being LESS happy when my children are gone. Because they will still be mine. But I sure won't have a party to celebrate them leaving. And you will NEVER see a vanity plate on my car that shouts to the world, "They're all gone and I couldn't be happier about it"

Because I won't be happier about it.Andt for now, I will enjoy every moment with them while I can.

The end.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Being a Wicked Witch has it's perks

So, once again, we attended a play.

This time Julia shined brightly as the Wicked Witch of the West, Evilene, in a production of the Wiz.

Our little family waited patiently for the evening to start.

Kate is always so supportive of her siblings. What a gal.

And our grandparents from the burg came to see and support. Thank you so much! More grandparents and aunts and cousins next week too!

I heard Julia practicing a little around the house. But I did not hear the full version until opening night. I already know her vocal capabilities, but she blew me away.

I bawled during her song. Literally. Kate and I both cried as we told her how amazed by her we were.

And when her skirt came undone during her song, she handled it beautifully and didn't miss a beat vocally. Her focus was on her skirt for a moment or so, but I'm glad. Even though she has bike shorts underneath, no mother wants to see their daughter on stage like that! Obviously Julia felt the same and made getting her skirt back together a priority.

But at curtain call, her Lord High Underling, who she torments during the play, "accidentally" stepped on her skirt as they walked across the stage. Again, luckily she had bike shorts on underneath because there was a full reveal that time. I laughed and laughed because it seemed Lord High Underling got his revenge. It really was an accident, but they were both so mortified that it was cute.

I had to post the happy, non-evil picture of her as Evilene.

She just blew it out of the water. Seriously. I am still stunned by her performance. Her number is in the middle of the play, and it infuses some life into everything. Most of the songs are a little slower, and then Evilene gets to come along and rock the joint.

We are so proud of you Julia.

I can't imagine that there are not big things in your future.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

An offer

Remember how excited I was to get these shelves up? Well, it seems they will be coming down in the next few months.

We got an offer on our house. Two actually. One's a back up.

It's surreal.

Are we really doing this?

Really moving to the country?

Really leaving hustle and bustle of the west side of the mountains behind?

Seems we are.

Now hopefully the bank says yes to one of the offers at least.

Yes, our house is a short sale. I guess it doesn't have to be if you have 100 thousand dollars you want to give me to cover the difference between what we owe and what it's worth. No?

That's ok. It is what it is and I'm not sad about it.

The best part about these offers? I don't have to keep my house ridiculously clean every day.

Happy am I.
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