25 January 2012

a typical day...

a typical day...(after reading through another post similar to this one, i thought it would be fun to record a fairly ordinary day in our lives right now. here goes...) 5:47 - my alarm goes off. ugh. remembering n's cries to nurse at three, i hit snooze and roll over. (i hit snooze pretty much every morning...) 7:00 - at some point, i actually turned the alarm OFF and decided to skip the walk. i always hate that decision but...it's inevitable when i'm still being woken up in the middle of the night consistently. something woke me up though (not a little voice saying, "my wake up!" in my face...) and so i got up. stumbling downstairs, i turned the heater and the coffee on and started a pot of groats. LOVE that cereal. wish we could eat it more often but seeing as it takes an hour to simmer...it's just not feasible most mornings. i check my email, read a bit of 1 timothy, want to see what mark driscoll has to say on the end of chapter one so start listening to a sermon of his.  7:37 - two of the kids are sitting on my lap. for some reason i was thinking it was friday and forgot that john has an early morning meeting on thursday mornings (if he hadn't needed to get ready, he probably would have kept the kids in bed with him until at least eight). the cereal was no where near ready so we read books until it was time to eat. curious george and bearenstain bears were the libre du jour.  8:15 - the kids and i are eating groats and bananas (more coffee for me). n is still sleeping. j is ironing a shirt. ironing is something i refuse to do, only because i caught him RE-ironing a shirt i'd already ironed once. i figured if he didn't like the way i did it, then he could do it himself.  8:45 - the older two are done eating. i've taken lu to the potty and said goodby to j. n finally wakes up. pretty sure it has to do with the fact that e is getting dressed and thumping and bumping quite a bit while doing it. feed her her groats and banana. try to pay bills in between bites.  10:00 - chat with my mom a bit while clearing off the table. the bills have been paid and taken out to the box. the kids are playing nicely. i check facebook and try to decide on a recipe to take to the recipe swap friday night. 10:30 - snack time. apple slices. cheese. almonds. after snack, we all troop outside. i sit on a blanket and work on my mom's birthday present (which was, yes, over a month ago). n toddles around, learning how to walk on uneven ground. lu pretends to be "working" with a overturned wheelbarrow and a few buckets. e finds a couple sticks and somehow works out a bow and arrow. he proceeds to shoot me a few times before i lose my patience and confiscate the sticks. seriously. is it so hard to shoot something other than a person? why does he always have to shoot at people?!? i almost get sunburn on my shoulders; it does not feel like january. 11:15 - lu has to go potty so the girls trek back into the house (i still don't trust n outside without me out there too). lu goes back out after she's done. n and i (okay, mostly me) start lunch. pb&j with carrots and snap peas and some potato and lentil curl snacks that i found at trader joe's. i don't usually buy snacks like that because they're typically pretty nutrient deficient but i figured they would be a nice treat. a nice treat for mom: they have four grams of fiber and five grams of protein per serving. didn't see that coming.  11:45 - lunch time. the kids sit and eat for quite a while. i eat with them, relishing the quiet munching. 12:30 - clear the table. get the girls down and cleaned up. e clears his place. we filter into the playroom. e and i look through a picture puzzle book, searching each page for different items hidden within. lu prances around us in her "bal-rina" outfit and shoes. pandora is playing rather loudly on the stereo. the raffi station. n bops back and forth between e and i and the play kitchen. when the picture puzzle book has been completed, n sits in my lap for some reading time of her own. she RARELY lets me read to her; i relished every moment. i didn't really read anything to her, just pointed out different things in the pictures. she kept coming back to a page with yellow boots on it. after a few times, she could chorus along with me, "boo!" (boots!) sweet girl. 1:30 - nap time for the girls. lu asked to sleep in her "bal-rinas". didn't see much harm in it. she did take her tu-tu off though. once the girls were down, i read chapter thirteen from the first harry potter book to e. i wonder how much he's getting out of the book but seeing as he asks for it everyday, i figure he's enjoying it, even if he doesn't understand most of it.  2:00 - quiet time for me and e. i tell him he has to play quietly while mommy has some alone time.  he does well and choses his harry potter legos to play with today. i spend most of the time on the computer with a cup of tea in my hand. i hear n around 2:30 but decide that since she's not fussing too much, she'll be fine for another half an hour. 3:00 - i get n up. lu wakes up shortly after. a small snack of popcorn and oranges. 3:30 - the kids play while i whip up a batch of pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. discovered halfway through the mixing that i was out of chocolate chips. substituted bittersweet chocolate chunks and hope the muffins will still be as deletable as they usually are.  4:00 - finally tackle the mountain of dishes as soon as the muffins are done baking. i despise doing the dishes and find them much more do-able if i just do them once a day, preferably before j gets home... 4:20 - i join the kids in the playroom. start e on a few school pages (kumon workbooks for now). the girls color for a bit then wander off to play in the kitchen.  4:45 - e finishes his pages. i have picked up the abandoned crayons and try to tap my inner artist. a two-dimensional map of a town emerges, along with a sketch of harry and his nimbus two thousand. 5:15 - call j a few times to try to get a feel for when he's planning to be home. discover he's at applebee's with his cousin, have a feeling he won't be home when he says he will. 5:30 - start dinner. it's just tacos in a bowl and really only needs a bit of prep. heat/smash the beans (e's job), cut up the avocados and tomatoes, open the olives, shred the cheese, get the chips out, etc.  6:00 - the kids and i sit down to eat. j isn't home yet but i'm hungry and the food is hot so there's really no sense in waiting for him. 6:45 - j walks in the door. i'm a the sink, filling the dishwasher. the kids are in the playroom, supposed to be cleaning up but are instead pretending to shoot spells at each other with lincoln log wands. j sits down to eat, distracting n, thankfully, from emptying the dishwasher of the dishes i'm continually adding.  7:15 - i escape to the computer room to figure out an online order my mom and i are doing together. she and i spend a few more minutes on the phone. n joins me for a bit too. 7:37 - i realize that clean up isn't and hasn't been happening and pretty much blow my top. send the kids upstairs despite the disaster that still litters the floor of the playroom. decide that they'll finish their job in the morning, before breakfast, no matter how faint with hunger they find themselves. 8:00 - n is already in bed, still fussing though. sing with lu. coat her chapped cheeks with eucerin cream. do the same to e. sit with him a bit, trying to explain to him that though i'm disappointed in his choice to be disobedient, i still love him, no matter what. he doesn't sound convinced. poor guy. not sure how to get through to him that i love him despite what he does.  8:15 - try to nurse n, who was still carrying on in her crib. she sucks halfheartedly for a few minutes before sitting up and trying to chat with me. i put her back to bed, reminding myself not to fall for that trick again. 8:30 - head downstairs. clean up the now-cooled muffins. make the coffee for the morning. start a load of diapers in the dryer. try to figure out why the lower level smells so much like poop. jump on facebook for a few minutes. run through the day in my head, to see how much of i actually remember...enough. and so i begin typing away. listening to joni mitchell.

14 January 2012

confessions of a preschool dropout.

confession time: we took e out of school last fall. and we have no plans to enroll him somewhere this coming fall. i'm still not sure how i feel about that decision. it wasn't that he didn't like preschool, or do well there, we mainly pulled him out due to the financial burden. and also the disruption of family life. our boy is a bit of a sleepy head, naturally waking somewhere between 7:45 and 8:15 (his sister wakes him up much earlier than that on most days however). considering the fact that school started at 8:15...i hated waking him up just to get him out the door. more often than not, i had to wake one of the girls up too. sleep is so important to their development; i never felt right waking one of them up just so he could go cut and paste (obviously, he did more than that but sometimes it seemed it was nothing more than an expensive daycare).
on his first day of preschool - august 2010
the only pause i have is when i think about the friends he made. he really only has one friend now...though he enjoys playing with the neighbor kids on occasion. did we deny him the chance to make new friends? i don't make friends easily. i never have. i am a homebody at my core; it is just easier for me to stay home and find friends within the pages of a book. that's just who i am. however, i do see and understand the desperate need we all have for friends. first and foremost, i'd like my children's friends to be their siblings. and there's no other way to nurture that than to spend time together. e and lu are now getting to the ages where they can play together well, though not always nicely. but he also needs other boys he can gang around with, to tackle and shoot guns, to spit and fart and do BOY stuff. my prayer for him this year is that he would make and find a few fast friends.
in class...
now, preschool is behind us (for e anyway). kindergarten looms. we've talked through the various options for school next year and beat out the pros and cons of each. public school: close to home vs. large class sizes, curriculum geared to pass standardized tests. charter school: good curriculum, variety of programs/classes vs. driving more than a few minutes, not guaranteed to get in. homeschool: chose curriculum to fit our family, flexible schedule vs. no social aspect.
i've started looking at homeschooling curricula and am, of course, overwhelmed. mostly at all the different options available but also, the cost involved. i realize that it won't be free...still the cost is much higher than i anticipated (though the fact that i could use the same curriculum for more than one child is a definite plus). i got tears in my eyes just this afternoon as i was reading through a kindergarten course description. so silly! i got excited about being able to teach my son the things described in the catalog. i want to teach him those things! to watch him learn and learn to love to learn. but i also want him to have time away from home. to learn how to be independent and not socially awkward.
home after his first day
 it is just kindergarten. it's not like we're talking about the tenth grade here. he's only FIVE! still such a little boy. a little boy that should be running around, playing with legos, kicking dirt and ripping holes in his jeans. not confined to a desk or a table, learning to count to one hundred. obviously, learning is important. and school is important. but so is life and living! and learning to love the act of learning. and i'm starting to think that he could develop that best jumping into puddles, filling his pockets with rocks and poking an ant hill, just to see what happens...

04 January 2012

blogity blog blog

it would seem that i have been neglecting this little piece of internet real estate.
but that really isn't the case.
i have sat at this computer, in this chair, fingers clicking away quite a bit lately.
i've just never hit "publish".
the words staring back at me in their black and white reality were just a bit too real.
too personal.
too private.
so...i've been taking up the pen more often.
writing my words down on lined paper.
keeping them to myself.
i don't want to abandon this blog completely.
i would like to keep it alive and fresh.
a place to write out my moments with my littles as they grow increasingly LESS little.
because i'm already experiencing the forgetfulness of motherhood.
the mini moments get lost so quickly.
i can't remember what elijah's baby voice sounded like...his coos and gurgles that kept me company in the night.
i can't remember all lucy's silly pronunciations and made up songs.
naomi is already starting to lose her "baby-ness" at 14 months...
and though i do my best to cling to it...she can't help but grow up.
she's losing her baby thunder thighs and gaining a vocabulary.
it's these little moments that this blog can help me remember.
i may not be able to record everything here...but i can certainly try.
and try i must...
i will try.
another goal for another year.
write more.
even if it's silly and seems insignificant.
someday i will appreciate it...

i already do.