Thursday, May 28, 2009

when life hands you lemons

Actually,  I don't think life "handed" me lemons today at all.  Life threw them at me full force,  catapulting in my face.  It was a rough morning, to say the least.

I think my kids are pretty good kids.  They argue a lot but love a lot ( the woes of being a parent of kids 13 1/2 months apart.......I might as well had twins).  But anyway,  their togetherness brings me double the joy but sometimes their togetherness brings me quadruple the madness.

So today I tell them,  "We need to get dressed to go to the grocery store.  We are going to have a nice time and come home and straighten up our house."
I don't need to bore you with all of THE STUFF I needed to do today.  Matt's Dad and stepmom were coming,  I'm planning for Bible School,  I have 2 kids that act like they have been living in the jungle with no rules...

The minute I told them we were going shopping the tantrums started.  I know they don't like to shop.   I know they want to play.  That is why for the last month I had done all of my shopping ALONE......IN BLISS......

But today,  we HAD to go.  No ifs, ands, or buts.  I was prepared.  I was going to be the most patient mom.  I had a plan.  I gave them each 3 stickers and said,  "The stickers are going to help you get rewards.  If you have 3 stickers by the end of our trip you will get a book,  a pack of gum,  and a trip to the park.  If you have 2 stickers you will get a pack of gum and a trip to the park.  One sticker,  trip to the park.  No stickers.....nothing.  (I put park at the end of rewards because I was secretly wanting to go there to spy on the movie stars filming a movie in our neighborhood...more on that later).

Well.  How do you think our trip ended?  We didn't go to the park.  The kids also got their tv show priviledges taken away.

But are probably thinking I am SOOOO STRICT.  I thought,  I'll make this fun because I know they hate the grocery.    The first fifteen minutes were great.  I was making a game out of our shopping experience.  They were so excited because I would say, "Zan, can you help me put 10 lemons in our bag."  Then it was Kaya's turn,  "Kaya, can you put 6 ears of corn in our bag."
They loved that but then got a little restless.  So then I said......"Let's pretend we are Special Agent Oso.  Zander,  see if you can find the bacon.   Kaya,  see if you can find the sausage."
This part of the experience was all good.  A worker was even grinning at us at our "Special Agent" mission.

Then we turn the corner into the eggs and dairy isle.  And that is when it all went to hell....
Kaya was trying to throw eggs (luckily she didn't) then Zander saw a display of cookies and told Kaya to throw those (unluckily she did).  They then proceeded to pull hair,  scream, and cry the most loud, obnoxious cry known to man.  

I separated them.  That didn't work.  Kaya would unbuckle and go pull Zander's hair.  When Kaya was buckled in he would go and get in her face and say, "Hit me Kaya."  Then he would hit her back.

Finally.......I was at the checkout lane.  I thought.......I can do this.  I can do this.  I can do this.  But suddenly they BOTH start screaming, "Pee on the floor with your penis.  Pee on the floos with your penis.  Pee on the floor with your penis."

I was mortified.  I told them to stop and then told them that TV was taken away for the rest of the day.  That resulted in a screaming cry from both that would make people think I had a hot iron on top of their bodies.

And that was when I lost it.  I was almost in tears already.  I got down into their car and yelled, "Stop it!  Right now!  That's enough!!!"

So then the manager came over to pacify them.  I'm really thankful she did BUT when she did I lost it even more and started crying right there in the store.  She asked me can I give them a sticker and show them where I work at the manager's desk?  I said sure,  because at that point.....why not?  

I think I was crying because it took a total stranger to calm them down.  I think I was crying because I am sick and tired of spending  2 hours in the grocery store when it should only take 30 minutes....tops.  I think I was crying because I felt like a total failure as a mom.

I try so hard to be a good mom.  I try so hard to prepare nutritious meals for my family.  But when you stay at home and do the shopping with the kids it is almost impossible.  By the time I leave,  I am so stressed I will buy anything just to get out of there.  

When I left the manager took our cart to the car and said, "Take a deep breath, mom.  In a few years you will want these years back."

And that made me feel even worse.  I'm sure the manager would be shocked to know I was ever an elementary teacher OR that I'm planning on teaching a preschool Bible School class next week.  She would be even more shocked that I ignore the comments of disbelief that I'm going to keep Zan at home next year instead of sending him to preschool because I just want one more year with my baby boy.

I came home though.....still frustrated........fed the kids lunch and put them down for nap.  Then I fixed myself 2 packs of ramen noodles, went to my bedroom with the door shut,  ate my lunch, watched my shows, and cried.  I cried for a long time......

I then felt a little bit better.  Zander woke up from his nap and was the sweetest thing ever.  He wanted to help me clean and make fresh lemonade for Pappaw and Grandma Texas.  We had the best time making our lemonade together.  I love my little tots.......just not when we buy groceries.

Isn't it ironic............when life hands you lemons----just make lemonade?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

scooter fun

Like I have said before,  my athletic ability is not very impressive.  So I'm glad my kids seem to get their ability to balance and physical strength from their dad!  They have recently learned how to really scoot around.  They have had the scooters for a while but are now just comfortable to go out on their own to ride.  We ride almost every day scooting times!!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

family ties

I always remember as a little girl going to Grandma & Grandpa Dick's house with all of my cousins. We would always go after church for dinner ( which in my mind is fried chicken, potatoes, side, and a ton of desserts). I'm not sure if we went every Sunday......but that was what it seemed like in my mind.

I always remember playing with my cousins. We would either go into the attic upstairs or go roam around outside. Now, I could go on with this like it was a picture-perfect story where we all got along....
We all loved each other, but the picture-perfect story isn't what I remembered. I remember being made fun of because I was the "prissy, scaredy-cat cousin". The cousin that couldn't ride a bike, spoke in "too big" words, and always dressed fancy.

Don't worry dear cousins that read this.....I'm not bitter, I actually find it funny now. I laugh so hard now when I tell the "cousins making fun of me" stories now because they are so true. I think I owe that to my mom and dad who always made me think I was "the most beautiful and smart girl in the world".....which is probably why you guys made fun of me!

I do remember, regardless of how I was made fun of (thanks mom and dad, again), that it was a pretty fun time when we would go out and explore.....

Back to REAL TIME......this was the first Memorial Day that all of us were together. We were talking that the last time we had a picture made together Felisha & Michael were about 10 years they are around 27 (I think) and like Lora said, "Felisha was frowning in the background." Now Felisha is about the happiest gal on the block!

I think fondly of all of my cousins in different ways.....
Jeff---the oldest......I don't know a person that wouldn't love him.  I always feel like he loves me and is happy to see me at anytime.
John--the risktaker....I always remember him with the nail in his foot,  then catching on fire.  He used to live on the edge......the crazy cousin!  I'm not sure if he lives on the edge now but he always has a funny remark.
Angela--Well, Angela,  I could write a whole paragraph about.  My cousin I used to fight with endlessly.......but also the cousin I relate to the most.  She is silly, outspoken,  never lets anyone else get the final word.  We used to have our disagreements but now when I see her there isn't a person that makes me laugh louder.  I love her honesty and zest for life!
(If I was putting myself in the order of cousins......this is where I fit)
Amy--My first best friend.  And she is still a person I could tell anything and trust her forever.  Most of my favorite childhood memories include her.  She taught me to ride a bike (finally, at age 12),  she was there for my first crush,  there for the stories of my first kiss,  she was there for all of my good stories.  A best friend I will always hold dear to my heart.
Kim-One of the purest souls ever.  I used to be protective of I find her a true confidant and friend.  She is one of the hardest workers I have ever seen and one of the purest hearts in the world.  Matt and I both agree that she is a special person that is rare in this world.
Michael--Actually, he is my brother, not my cousin.  But he is one of the most loved people I've known.  People that know me ( and not him) say, "I can't wait to meet your brother."  I always say,  "Think of me and then think of the total opposite.  That is my brother."  I'm so talkative and outgoing.  He isn't.  But I don't know of anyone that doesn't love him.  Everyone loves Michael.  He is the BEST.
Felisha--Such a sweet, smart, outgoing gal.  I often think Felisha is like me...Outspoken,  opinionated,  crafty,  self-confident.  I am very proud of her and all she has accomplished.  
Lora--Lora makes everyone smile.  Everyone likes her.  I remember when she was born and a toddler.  I loved being with her ( I think I was 8 or 9) because I thought she was the funniest girl!  I loved babysitting her when I was a teenager because she always agreed that anything I thought of was fun!  
Evan--I spent a lot of time with Evan when I was growing up.  I remember he got stitches more than any child I've ever known!!! Life was never boring when he was around!!  He was always so sweet though,  almost like a 2nd little brother.
Rebecca-I loved holding Rebecca when she was little girl.  She was always so friendly and such sweet thing!  She has grown up to be a very smart, friendly, sweet woman.
Erin--She is quite a bit younger than all of us but still part of the first generation of cousins.  I remember thinking she was the prettiest baby I had ever seen........until I saw my own babies (sorry Erin)'ll understand in a few years......but she was so beautiful.  I took pictures of her all the time when she was a baby and toddler.  She could be a handful but was so cute...
When I saw her this weekend it almost took my breath away to see what a beautiful teenager she has time flies....

Now you've heard about the cousin is the next generation.  I can't believe we all have kids this age!

And look at my lovely daughter mooning the camera......ok, so now my cousins can make fun of me once again.  
The kids finally stand semi-still.
I'm not sure why Great-Grandpa is laughing......who knows?  Looks like something my kids are doing, again.
And here are the first generation of kids.  My mom with here brothers.  By the way,  my mom isn't very short...she is probably 5'6'' or 5'7'' but my uncles are really tall. (Matt's hoping Zan takes the tall genes to play basketball for U of L.

And my kids LOVED playing and being with all of their cousins.....can't you tell?

welcome, brady brody

Here he is.....the new light of our life!

You can see that I'm not the only one enamored with him.  He is such a sweet, perfect, little boy.  Every time we ask Zander what his favorite part of the visit was he says, "Seeing Baby Brody."  My brother and sister-in-law did a great job creating such a precious little boy (of course, I'm not surprised.

I'm truly loving this new title of aunt---well, being an aunt to Brody that is.  (To all of my other "nieces and nephews" out there,  you know I'll still always be your aunt too!  )

Welcome to the family.......we look so forward to loving you and spoiling you endlessly!!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

busy in love

Sorry all.........I won't be writing for a few days.

Instead I'll be relaxing in Kentucky with the family. And when I'm not relaxing I'll be holding and rocking my new nephew, Brody Dawson. The most beautiful, sweetest, little boy. He is.....perfect. I truly think my heart grew 5 times bigger when he was first placed into Aunt Korisa's arms.

I don't have pictures uploaded to share but I'll put some on when I get home. You must see him. I must see him again soon today. His mom and dad are going to get sick of me, I'm sure. How wonderful to be so busy falling in love with such a sweet little guy.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

camden and the toy war

We had so much fun at Camden's 2nd birthday party!!!  It doesn't seem like she could already be that old!

The kids loved the caterpillar cake (made by Ben).  I'm glad to see my child isn't the only one who always ends up with icing everywhere!
The birthday girl did a great job with that too......

I had a lot of fun picking out a gift that is sure to win a prize in the toy war with Ben.  Ben has loved getting my kids things like a huge tent,  a instrument set....He was nice enough to not get Kaya anything obnoxious for her birthday this year (I think because I was in so much pain before my surgery).  But now I feel great again,  I thought I'd stir things up again.

Oh I must say I've had lots of fun getting glittery clothes and makeup for Katie in the past.  He really loved the beads and jewelry set.....
But this might just be my favorite purchase in the war.

The Wonderpets inflatable sailboat that holds many balls.  I told Zander and Kaya when we went shopping to pick out something that we needed to get something big or loud.  Zander even reminded Kaya of that when she wanted something else for Camden.  He said,  "Kaya that isn't big or loud.  Remember what mom said.....we need to pick something else."

Although the ball pit technically doesn't make noise,  the kids inside made lots of I'm very happy with the results.
Camden was very happy too.......and that is what matters most even if I don't win the toy war.
All 3 of the kids were so tired after playing so hard..........good times......

Monday, May 18, 2009

3 pictures I happy together

When you're with me, baby the skies will be blue.....for all my life.

So How is the weather? 
So Happy Together.........
So Happy Together.......

From The Turtles song, "Happy Together"

Thursday, May 14, 2009

this one is for the birds

Well the birds,  and my little bird-lover, that is.

My son is fascinated by birds.  He loves watching them ( I have birdhouses right outside the playroom window and in our backyard) and he loves watching them at Grandma Martha's house.

Speaking of Grandma Martha (my dear mom) she has always loved birds.  I remember when I was younger she would say, "Oh look at that wren.  Look at that cardinal.  I really don't like the crows and bluejays because they bully the other ones."

And I would smile and say, "Yep,  that's nice."

I really couldn't understand her fascination with birds.  I mean,  jeez.....birds are everywhere.   I thought watching birds were the most boring creatures on earth and how in the world would you find them so interesting?

And then I became a Mother myself.  And I keep acting like more like my Mom each day.  Now I find it an honorable trait......when I was teenager,  I swore I'd never act like her.  

I remember calling mom one afternoon when I found a nest in one of my hanging flower-baskets.  I remember it clearly because I was at home alone with Zander and pregnant with Kaya when Matt was out of town.  I remember because I went outside to water my flowers when the door was open and a bird flew into my house.  I was freaked out!  I ran to the neighbor's house and begged her husband to come over and get the thing out....what do you do with a stinking bird in your house? 
So after the neighbor's husband got the bird out I figured out it was trying to attack me because I was trying to water the nest.

So.....after all the drama,  I call Mom. " There is a nest in my flower basket......isn't that exciting.  I moved it so we could look at it!!!  Isn't that great?"
Mom says,  "You moved it.  What kind of bird is it?"
Me, "I don't know.  Some kind of brown bird, I guess."

I could feel her disgust through the phone.  "Korisa,  you can't move a nest.  The mom may not come back now and the babies will die."  I of course,  the all-knowing daughter I am, says, "Oh, it is fine.   I didn't touch the nest."

Well, the babies hatched.....but no one came to feed them.  And it killed me that I was the true murderer in this case.  

So the next time I talk to my bird-watching mom, she asks..."You still don't know what kind of bird it is?".  "No mom, I don't.  They all look like birds to me."

She replies,  "Well I thought everyone could identify birds.  I got bird flashcards when I was a little girl.  So  I could identify birds."

Well......isn't that nice.

Flash forward a few years.......Zander has Grandma Martha's genes.

I guess I may have her genes too.  After I felt so bad about killing the baby birds...I wanted some bird houses and flowers.  We are on our I tell one neighbor friend of mine.....we will soon look like the botanical gardens of Atlanta.   I DO TRULY love my birds and flowers now.......isn't it funny how life changes?

We spend every pretty morning now looking at the birds.  I'm pretty proud of myself.  I can now identify a few of the birds and actually look forward to the bird-watching with Zan before Kaya wakes up.

We have 3 big bird feeders that we fill up all the time and watch.  But we were really thrilled yesterday when we found this nest.  (I don't touch it or move anything in the tree around it).  I noticed it at dinner time because the male and female cardinal bird kept going to that tree and chasing other birds away.......(I'm truly amazed I suddenly realized a nest might be there then).

Last night before bed, Zander told his Dad I'm going to get up and watch the birds.

He was right,  we did.
We did see the cardinal bird several times, but that pesky thing doesn't stay still long enough to take a picture.  But there is the nest ( I think it is the cardinal nest, anyway).

But then we started watching the finches.  They come around all the time.

After our 2 1/2 hours of bird-watching (no kidding),  I got us dressed to do a little birthday shopping for one of our favorite friends.  I told Zander that we could also shop for a bird book.
I thought  we could find  a book more similar to the one on the left.  Just a general book about birds.  But no,  Zander wanted something else (which he bought with his piggy-bank money).  He just had the have the bird-watcher's guide with sounds.  I told him if he got this, he couldn't get anything else,  because it was at least $24.00 even with my Barnes and Noble discount.  ( Of course, I'm a big liar because I did get he and Kaya some more chapter books with my cash...I'm frugal unless it comes to books).  

He was too cute though.......I would happily pay $24.00 of my own money, not the piggy-bank money......just to have the moments I'm about to share.

After we found the book in the "adult" section of bird books,  we went back to the children's reading section.  Zan sat there and "read" his book while Kaya "read" books of her own.  I found an easier bird book to read.  Well it is written for 5-8 year olds.........but I guess I'm reading it and he likes that kind of stuff.  He doesn't like the "easy science" books anymore.

We had to call Grandma Martha and tell her about our new book.  She said,   "That is so funny.  Zander has a book with bird sound in it and I had bird flashcards."  

I'm thinking,  "Our information devices has changed.....but our love for nature has stayed the same."  

And Zander is in LOVE.  In LOVE with birds.  That is all I've heard about today.  So much, that sometimes,  I just want to say " Good grief with the birds!  We have seen them!  It is great!"

But I don't say that,  I want to encourage any interest he has in nature.

This will show you how much in LOVE he is in with his new Bird Book.  He told me earlier today, "This is my very special book, Mom.  I will keep it forever."

And here it is looking at it.............during his 20-minute allotted time of Handy-Manny each day.  He is a true bird- study-guide!
He also had to show his new book to Dad........

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

"Live in the sunshine, swim in the sea, drink the wild air."
 Ralph Waldo Emerson

Kaya builds a sandcastle.

My Mother's Day present from Kaya...I still have it...
Zan draws in the sand.
Kaya relaxed and read magazines with me for a full five minutes.

Practicing her forward-roll.
I love these 3 pictures of Zander.  You really see his personality.

Just walking along the beach.