Mind the Gap

Sloan has now lost all four of his front teeth.  The last one came out tonight at church.  While I was in choir practice and the kids were supposed to be watching a movie in the cry room until I finished, Sloan ran in repeatedly with a status report on his tooth.

It’s suuuuper wiggly.

It popped TWO TIMES.

Look how far I can push it mom?  Is this making you sick?

Mom it’s barely hanging on – will you pull it out?

No wait!  Never mind.  I’ll do it.

And finally…

Mom it’s out, it’s out, it’s out!!!  With Tia trailing close behind, Thwoan wost his toof mom and he hath a hole in his mouf!

When we got in the car to come home, he dropped it and we couldn’t find it – so the tooth is officially lost.  And I have a tooth floating somewhere in my car, which is totally gross.

I keep getting this spinning wheel of a bad horror movie in my head where the tooth comes to life and starts attacking me while I drive… 

It’s been a long, long day.  Let’s just say Lee’s out of town, I just got the kids to bed, it’s 10:15 and I still have to play Tooth Fairy tonight even though I don’t have any cash so I’m going to go scrounge and dig up as many coins as I can find.  Oh and my house apparently threw up while I was out and about today – there are clothes and dishes everywhere. 

And I’m envisioning them coming to life and attacking me in my sleep.

Awesome…

Sloan toothless

Mom, Dad – I’m Sorry

There’s a tree down the street from our house.  It’s branches are splayed left and right, front and back, one after another.  It is the perfect climbing tree.  And my kids love to climb it.

As a kid I was a bit of a dare devil.  If a tree could be climbed, I scaled it to the top.  If a bench was before me, I tried to flip off of it.  If I could climb to the very tip of a mountain, I did it, then hung over the side for good measure.  Remember, I am the same child who thought it would be a good idea to climb onto the roof out of her second story window as a kid simply because I wanted to see what the world would look like from the very tip of our house.  And it is but a miracle that I didn’t break my neck trying to get away from the nest of horse flys that I stepped in on my ascent to the top.

I can distinctly remember as a kid, my mom giving me the freedom to explore while watching warily and saying a frillion times, “Kelli.  Be careful.  Kelli. Slow down.  Kelli!”  To me, it was hilarious watching her get nervous and scared because “Moooomm, I’m totally cool.  I got it.”  Then I’d plunge backwards and flip off the top of the football goal at our local high school.

Or hiking with my dad in Colorado the summer before my senior year, when we got to the top of Pike’s Peak, I thought it was so funny to climb down onto a little ledge over an expansive cavern below andhave  dad take a picture of me from ground level looking like I was hanging on for dear life.  Dad laughed, took the picture, then demanded that I get back up on solid ground before I gave him a heart attack.

So it shouldn’t be a surprise to me that my kids are a little dare devilish.  And I probably deserve the hyperventilation that comes from watching them.  As I stood under the tree last night watching Tia slither in and out of the branches, all but swinging from limb to limb by one arm, I got so panicked that I had to turn away.  Lee laughed, Sloan and Tia cackled and I told them to hurry up and finish and get back on solid ground before I had a heart attack.  In my minds eye, all I could see was one of them plumetting to the ground and my heart raced.

It’s the same feeling I get when we go to a local park that has a significant hiking trail.  At one point, there is a rock that juts out over a large ravine and the kids love to go sit out on the rock and look out over the sky.  I don’t blame them – it’s exhilerating.  But I can’t watch.  Lee has to go with them and I have to walk away so I can’t see them teetering 100 feet off the ground.  Of course it’s not like they’re anywhere near the edge of the rock and they have to sit or stand very still, but I always envision them tripping and plunging and sweet mercy, I’m gonna be ill…

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Mom, dad, I’m sorry for the grey hairs on your head that were caused by my insanity.  If it’s any consolation, I’m pretty sure I’ll be grey early.  Go ahead, I give you full permission to throw your head back and break forth with an almighty laugh of satisfaction….

*pause*

Okay, that’s good.  You can stop laughing now.

My Stud Muffin with his Stud Muffie

I can’t get enough of watching Landon handle a ball.  From what I hear, he’s better at two than his daddy was, which is apparently a big deal.  It’s just so fun to watch him get hold of a basketball and start dribbling.  He is now starting to run and dribble and he gets a very intense look on his face when he does it.  I love that the child who was named after his dad (his middle name is Lee) is so much like his dad.  And I love watching the kids play with their dad.  Landon shares his daddy’s love and skill in basketball.  Sloan shares his dad’s love and skill in golf.  And Tia shares her dad’s love for competition.  They all got a little bit of him.

As you can see, Daddy gets a bit intense about dribbling a ball.  So much so that sometimes he has to be reminded to share.  Ha!

My husband is hot.  S’okay – you can agree with me.  :)

I found this picture on my computer this morning and it made me smile.  I love my family…

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No Boys Allowed!

Today was a sad day for the child who bears the X-Chromosome.  It was a day she had been waiting for with great anticipation, but was ultimately not to be…  She was supposed to have her “vewy betht fwend” come over to play for the whole morning.  An entire morning of girly giggles, squeals and squeaks.  Her friend was even going to come with us to watch Tia do gymnastics.  The excitement was palpable.

But her high was crushed at 4:30 this morning when Sloan came tearing into our room, jolting Lee and I out of our slumber so quickly that we almost knocked each other out in our flurry to figure out whether or not the world as we know it was about to end.

Turns out the world was not about to end, but Sloan was just dry heaving and experiencing major stomach cramps.  The kid hates to throw up and avoids it at all costs so in his attempt to not hurl, he completely and totally freaked out causing quite the ruckus.

And nobody really went back to sleep after that.  So we had to cancel the anticipated playdate, which resulted in great weeping and gnashing of teeth.  Had I had tiny sackclothe, I fear Tia would have arrayed herself in such and tossed the ashes of the fireplace over her head.  She rolled on the couch moaning, “I don’t hab anybody to pway wif.  I don’t wanna pway wif my bwudders.  I want to pway wif a Dirl!”  And on and on that went.

I already felt bad for her because I remember as a kid how devastating it was to have plans cancelled.  But as I listened to her wail at the prospect of being stuck with the boys all day long, my heart sank a little more.  I wish she had a sister.  I really do.  I know lots of girls grow up with only brothers (including myself) and they turn out okay, but I do wish she had the companionship of another X.

Growing up, I can’t say I ever remember longing or yearning for a sister.  When I was planning my wedding, I remember thinking it would have been fun to have a sister to talk and laugh with, but other than that I never felt that I was missing out.  Now that I’m grown, though, I really do sometimes wish I had a sister.  Not that my brother isn’t great, because he is, but you know…he’s a boy.  He’s got cooties.  And he doesn’t like to talk on the phone because clearly the Y-Chromosome shuts off a man’s brain when a phone comes into close proximity of his ear canal…

Anyway, I do wish Tia had a sister.  Maybe she will someday.  I won’t say never, because I am not sure God has completely closed the door on the expansion of our family.  In fact, I’m fairly certain He hasn’t, but Lee feels…differently.  Ahem.

Of course, not having a friend to play worked out swimmingly when I couldn’t keep Tia awake past noon due to the fact that she had been up since 4:30 in the AM.  And bonus!  I think we will fulfill the need for girl time tomorrow instead.  Hopefully that will release the pent up giggles that are threatening to end her sweet life as we know it!

Because I’ve worn myself out

I wrote a post last night about how much I love writing.  It included little anecdotes about a fifth grade story on a hot air balloon race, a college professor who changed my life and how I waxed poetic on journal pages throughout the years growing up.  I even included little nuggets of interest like how my mom has just about every little school project I’ve ever done tucked away somewhere (as well as my first lock of hair and, for a long time, my baby teeth.  If you haven’t already mom, you can get rid of those.)

It might have been brilliant.  But it felt forced so I erased it.  Because it’s my blog and I can do that.  Ah!  The power of being in control!!!

I do really love writing, but this week I’ve worn myself out.  There are lots of projects in the works.  Good things.  Fun things.  But it’s tiresome.  And I’ve been researching and prepping for a temporary freelance gig that starts next week that I feel totally unprepared for.  And my brain is fried. Like an egg on a hot skillet.  Without the drugs.  Though I do get quite a buzz from the creative process.  See that?  Fragmented sentences.  A writing no-no. 

Fuh-RIED, my brain is.  Yes – I’m also channeling Yoda thanks to my kids.  Crazy, I am.

So I have nothing of real substance to offer today.  Obviously.  I’ll leave you with a few photos instead.  Because I hope to somehow redeem this runaway train of a post.  Ah!  A cliche.  Another writing no-no.  I need to stop.

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The Moolah Shrine Circus: Landon didn't just hate the clowns - he practically undressed me trying to get away from them.

The face painting was nothing short of a work of art.

The face painting was nothing short of a work of art.

What do you do with a crabby Butterfly? (I'll give you a hint - it requires a warm blanket and a quiet, dark room).

What do you do with a crabby Butterfly? (I'll give you a hint - it requires a warm blanket and a quiet, dark room).

 

My outfit yesterday. Why? Because it's finally warm enough, because I love cowboy boots, and because I can only pull this off for so much longer before it starts to get weird and I become an embarrassment to my kids...

My outfit yesterday. Why? Because it's finally warm enough, because I love cowboy boots, and because I can only pull this off for so much longer before it starts to get weird and I become an embarrassment to my kids...

Disappointed

I’ve taken a couple of days to think through this Health Care Reform Bill and ponder the ramifications that it brings about.  I must confess that Sunday night, I was angry.  I couldn’t even watch as one by one Congress men and women stood up and made their case because it felt so terribly deceptive and wrong.  They weren’t making a case for or against the bill – they were lobbying.  Not all of them, of course.  I can count on one hand the few who I sensed truly and passionately believed that what they were arguing was right (on both sides of the debate).  The rest, however, were making a campaign speech.  It made me feel violated.  I found myself pacing the kitchen, yelling at the TV and, finally, turning my back and trying to tune it all out.  I was mad.

Today?  Today I’m disappointed.  I’m not angry anymore.  I’m just very, very disappointed.

I’m disappointed in our leaders and their lack of leadership.

I’m disappointed in the Democrats for their arrogant dismissal of public concern.  For their willingess to push this thing forward despite a majority of Americans being against this particular bill.  Take note that I did not say that those of us who opposed this bill were against reform

I’m disappointed in the politicians who pontificate as though we the people are no more than uneducated toddlers who need our hands held and paths directed.

I’m disappointed that our elected leaders are more interested in appeasing their constituents than in doing the right thing.

I’m disappointed in the Republicans for their arrogant misuse of power.

I’m disappointed in our President for placing his desire to make a legacy for his Presidency over the will and good of the people.

I’m disappointed that our leaders are willingly spending money we don’t have on a bill that no one understands.

I’m disappointed in the elected officials who did not have the courage to vote with their gut because they feared it would lose them precious votes at the polls.

I’m disappointed that my children will inherit this massive debt someday.

I’m disappointed that despite the enormous public outcry, our leaders weren’t able to come together and craft a bill that was more acceptable and fair.

I’m disappointed that politics came before the people.

I’m disappointed that our health care system was allowed to deteriorate to the place that it is now.

I’m disappointed that I don’t feel like I can trust a single politician any further than I can throw him…or her.

I’m disappointed…

I’m not sad or mad, though, and I have not lost hope.  By nature I tend to be fairly optimistic.  I hope that this health care reform bill will succeed.  I have doubts that it will, but I do hope.  I hope my fears, and the fears of thousands of others, are unfounded and wrong.  But a nagging thought keeps tapping the back of my mind – What if our fears and concerns are right?

I take courage in one thought and one thought alone…

Jesus is still the same yesterday, today and forevermore.  Some of you may not share that same conviction, but I find an enormous amount of comfort in the fact that none of this is a surprise to Him who is ultimately in control.  Do I want to suffer the consequences for bad decisions?  No, I really don’t.  But I won’t fear tomorrow – I will take rest that tomorrow will not surprise the One who ordained it from the beginning of time.

Beautiful Lips

It was October of 1999.  I was a senior at Baylor University and Lee and I were an official “item.”  We’d had the obligatory *DTR sometime mid-July and we had finally settled into calling one another boyfriend and girlfriend, although I must admit I giggled every time I called him my boyfriend.  It sounded so silly and trivial for no other reason than I knew I was going to marry this man and “boyfriend” seemed to diminish that.

But whatever – he hadn’t put a ring on it yet so that’s what we were stuck with.  You know what else he hadn’t done yet?

Kissed me.

Ah, he was a noble lad.  He was ever the gentleman and I think he was trying to hold out until he proposed.  But that could take forever for all I knew and, being the little minx that I was, I was doing everything in my power to break his will.

I put on shiny lip gloss.  I bat my eyes repeatedly.  I giggled and grabbed his arm when he made a joke.  When we hugged I layed my head against his chest and lingered as long as he would let me.  And he was weakening, I could tell. 

Then came the crisp Texas October night.  We were standing in the parking lot of my apartment complex saying our long, drawn out good-byes.  It was after midnight and Lee had to get up early the next morning.  I was feeling brazen and had made it some kind of subconcious mission to get him to kiss me.

We were discussing things that only those who are young and in love discuss.  Those discussions that have a sole purpose of giving you extra time to stare into one another’s eyes and dig deeper into the heart of the one you adore.  They are cheesy and innocent and sometimes I miss those conversations.  We still have them but they’re usually laced with fecicious banter and laughter…which is also fun, come to think of it.

“What is your favorite physical trait?” Lee asked. Before I tell you my reply, I’d like to remind you once again that I had a mission to get him to kiss me.  We had been an official item for roughly three months and I was so close to cracking through his gold plated chivalry.

Naughty girl…

“My kissable lips,” I said without missing a beat.  His eyes widened and I grinned mischeviously.  I blinked and gave him my best Come Hither.

“Gotta go,” he said and with a quick hug he hopped into his1992 fire red Pontiac Grand Am and tore out of the parking lot, dust and rocks billowing behind him.  Like James Dean…only not as cool.

Dang! He was good.  I was terrible, but he was good.

He finally kissed me about a week later after we had our first argument. I can’t even remember what we fought about but I do know it resulted in him looking at me and saying, “This not kissing thing is getting hard.” 

We got engaged three weeks later.  He was so close

Fast forward ten and a half years to Friday when I sat on the couch with the kids watching TV.  A Revlon commercial came on with Jessica Alba prancing around looking all catlike at the camera.  She was advertising lipstick.  When they zoomed in on her lips Sloan, who was nestled in the crook of my arm, shook his head slowly.

“Whoa,” he said. “She’s got beautiful lips.”

My head snapped down and he looked slyly at me from the corner of his eye with a devilish little grin and blushed slightly. Then he shrugged his shoulders all cool and said, “What?  She’s a beautiful girl.”

He comes by it honestly folks…

*Define The Relationship

Linky Love

I’m still nursing a sick little girl back to health…of course you’d never really know she’s sick the way she’s running around here.  Her face has finally returned to a reasonable palor and the rash is slowly subsiding.  Thank God for Amoxicillan!  So in leiu of a regular post, I will refer you to some posts that I have loved this week…

  • Shaun Groves, who is perhaps one of my new favorite bloggers, wrote this post yesterday that made me want to stand up and clap my hands.  
  • My friend Nicole and her husband Matt surprised their kids the other night in a most unique way.  It was adorable and I can’t wait to try it with our kids. 
  • I just love Stephanie from NieNie Dialogues.  Her outlook on life despite almost insurmountable odds is awe inspiring.  Plus her kids are adorable.  This post made me smile.
  • This post of Kelly’s made me laugh out loud. Girls Gone Wild at Church – hee, hee, hee…

I came across this old picture of Sloan the other day and it made me laugh.  Happy weekend everyone!

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All but the obvious

When Tia came home with a fever and a cough the other night, we didn’t worry much.  We’ve been parents for awhile now so we’ve seen our share of fevers and coughs.  And Tia, of all three kids, is the easiest patient to deal with. She rarely complains, she doesn’t let an illness keep her down and she almost always bounces back pretty quickly.

But this fever was different.  First of all, her face was bright red.  She looked like a tiny little beet sprouting white blonde hair. In addition to being bright red, her face was also very puffy. She was like a fluffy, doughy beet sprouting white blonde hair.  When she woke up yesterday, her face was still puffy and hot.  I assumed that she had gotten a little too much sun in Florida, but my mom assured me that she hadn’t had a sunburn.  So then I feared she was having an allergic reaction – but what was she reacting to?

When she came into our room last night complaining of chest pain, she emanated heat.  She was just shy of radioactive.  So I did what any self-respecting mother would do…I consulted the internets – particularly Facebook – to determine whether or not I should be concerned.  Thank God for modern technology yes?  My cyber friends convinced me that I needed to call the doctor and despite the fact that Tia woke up with a very low grade fever and no more red face, I called it in.

She has Scarlett Fever…with Strep Throat.  I suspected as much when I changed her this morning and she was covered in a sand paper-like rash.  Sloan had the same type of rash when he had Scarlett Fever two years ago (almost to the day). 

Tia had all the signs of Scarlett Fever and Strep…except the most obvious – a sore throat.  I must have asked her 100 times if her throat hurt and she always told me no.  But, she did say several times yesterday that her drink was “hurting her neck.”  At one point she asked me why I gave her a spicy drink.  I’m guessing this means her throat hurt while she swallowed.  Crazy kid.

When the doctor looked at her throat, he winced and told me her throat was bright red and extremely raw.  Way to go, Mom, for missing that one! Yeesh. 

So we are now on antibiotics and on the look out for more rashes, fevers and raw throats as Scarlett Fever is apparently pretty contagious.  So much for our long streak of no sickness.  It was an impressive run that had to come to an end at some point…

Reunited and it feels so good

Everyone is home and they have commenced to fighting and tattling already this morning.  And all is right in the Universe again…

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Sweet girl came home sporting a nasty cough and a fever. :(

 

It’s been a busy writing week for me.  I’m feeling a little buried right now.  To read my latest at STL Family Life, click here.  The topic?  Body After Baby.  I also guest posted over at Becke’s blog yesterday.  Actually, I was a week and a day late on my deadline so I was grateful for her patience with me.  You can also read my review of the new VeggieTales movie, Pistachio: The Little Boy Who Woodn’t.  I have a review and a post coming up soon over at 5 Minutes for Mom as well.  Whew.  It’s a lot but it is fun!

Now that I have all my babies back under one roof, we will relax and enjoy the rest of our Spring Break.  They’re tan, blonde and worn out.  And I, once again, cannot seem to get a single task accomplished.  Life goes on…