Monday, September 20, 2010

Typical Monday Morning (unedited)

Okay. Here's my first attempt at writing and letting the writing stand, without over thinking, and over editing (does spell check count as editing?).

Monday Mornings: My morning usually begins around 5AM when I hear my dear husband rustling around the bedroom trying to find socks or in the bathroom brushing his teeth. I offer a silent thank you to him for being so darn good to get up so early, then gratefully, I turn over and go back to sleep.

The alarm goes off at 6:30 and I roll out of bed to say a groggy morning prayer. I make my bed (with my mother's encouraging voice ringing in my ears). Then I head downstairs in my pjs and crazy bedhead hair. I usually make muffins - but today I got lazy and made biscuits which are easier and quicker. While the buiscuits cook, I go back upstairs to gather the troops.

Baby C calls from her bed, "Mom? You Up?" Meya jumps out of bed. Leasie takes time to smooth her sheets and covers. T-man runs around in his pj bottoms looking for clean socks. Madi hides under her covers until Baby C finds her. We all stop what we're doing to cuddle with Baby C.

The beeper from the oven sounds and everyone hustles downstairs. The kids eat hot biscuits while I retrieve the lunches from the fridge and set them by the front door. Next I empty their folders (which I should have done Friday afternoon). Baby C asks for juice, a cheese stick, and Dora soup for breakfast. I argue with my two year old and do not win.

At 7:25 I give the five minute warning. There's a mad dash of stuffing mouths with the last bites of biscuit, running up stairs for teeth brushing, gathering backpacks, and kneeling down for a family prayer. Madi, with arms folded, stands as "look-out" incase the bus comes while we are praying (we've missed it before).

Outside, I distribute quick hugs and kisses. I tell Madi and T-man to put down their sticks. I demand they put down their sticks. They drop the sticks just as the bus pulls around the corner.
Some days I am sad to see them leave. But today, I simply stand by Baby C and smile and wave with her as the bus carries them off to school. It is a windy morning. Across the street leaves flutter to the ground, twirling and spinning as they go.

Baby C takes my hand asking for "George, please?" We walk back inside. Together.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

To Write without Thought

What if I were to write without thinking too much (i.e., over-thinking what I write). What would come out on this blog? I'm worried all the skeletons in my closet will jump out and scare me and anyone reading. A friend pointed out that most of my blogs are tied up neatly at the end, maybe too neatly. As if I'm really afraid to let the struggles, goofs, and untidiness of life stand as is.

But Baby C is standing next to me, hitting my arm, begging for Dora and threatening take over the keyboard with some very close-calls of palm open slaps.

Just an idea though...maybe I'll try it. For a day or two. Writing without revision. Could be scary.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

It takes 2

It takes a two year-old to turn my world upside down and inside out. She wakes up cheerful, ready to distribute hugs as I stagger out of bed. She cannot resist music, dancing and snapping her fingers every chance she can gets. She pulls my hand to join her on the dance floor. It takes a two year old to make an entrance into any room. She is my most friendly, non-shy child. She waves goodbye and gallops into the childcare center at my gym without looking back.
It takes a two year-old to melt my heart with her sweet "please!" and her "hold you" request. And she cracks me up when she recites lines from Diary of a Wimpy Kid, her current favorite: "Ha ha you're dead!"
I will not lie. There are times. And there are days. When I dream of quiet and solitude, and time to think, and time...(don't get me started). The first week of school, with the big kids gone all day, was a challenge (to put it mildly). She unlocks the front door and escapes...regularly, and most unfortunately, when I'm in the shower. She opens the fridge and helps herself to everything...regularly. She is fascinated with toilet paper and rocks. It takes a two year-old to push me to my limits and beyond.
But then. It took a friend, who has had to return to the work force full time and now leaves her twin two year-olds at daycare all day long, to remind me that time with a two year old is a priviledge.
It takes two. A mom and a child. And I'm so grateful to be a part of this two.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Summer's end

It seems as though the rest of the country has already packed their lunches, put on their backpacks, boarded yellow buses, and gone back to school. But instead of feeling left behind, I've tried to relish this final week of summer.

I took the kids to our favorite swimming pool with the frog and duck slides.

I baked yummy breakfasts, and we ate them deliciously late each morning.

I stopped by Lola's (my FAVORITE!) with a friend. Though I was devastated that the s'more cupcakes were done for the season, I chose an almost equally tasty apple cupcake with cream cheese frosting. We took the cupcakes back to her house where our children were playing so nicely. We quietly grabbed cups and milk, and tiptoed up to her room where we ate our treats and talked in delightful seclusion.

I packed up the kids and drove to the National Zoo where we laughed at the orangutan playing with a tub of bubbles, shivered at the unsettling sight of the king cobra moving fast and reaching his head up to the dangling light, and cheered while watching the elephant play "tag" with a flock of birds.

And I let the kids stay up late so we could read "The Penderwicks on Gardam Street" (pure joy!)

Normally, I herald the coming of fall, but this week I've felt a real sense of loss as the end of summer approaches. Maybe it's because my children are getting so old. Madi enters her final year of elementary school this year. And the twins go to full day as first graders. Maybe I'm sad because we really enjoyed each others' company over the last few months and I'm going to miss them. And I know I'm feeling anxious about being in charge of Baby C by myself, ALL DAY LONG.

I love this quote by Thomas S. Monson (the president my church): "This is our one and only chance at mortal life—here and now. The longer we live, the greater is our realization that it is brief. Opportunities come, and then they are gone. I believe that among the greatest lessons we are to learn in this short sojourn upon the earth are lessons that help us distinguish between what is important and what is not. I plead with you not to let those most important things pass you by as you plan for that illusive and nonexistent future when you will have time to do all that you want to do. Instead, find joy in the journey—now."

So instead of jumping back into the schedule, practicing early bedtimes just to be ready (like the experts recommend), or getting out the backpacks, I'm going to find joy in these last two days of summer and hope that they go by slowly.