Wednesday, April 30, 2008

to spank or not to spank...

well, I'm not one for spanking, but Sam got one today. We were at the beauty supply store, and he was taking everything off the shelf and was certain he was going to push his own shopping cart. One might be asking what the big deal is with that. Well, let me explain. First of all I think my kids are the only ones I've ever seen in this particular beauty supply store; it's not the most kid friendly place. The aisles are very narrow and not much room for a 2 year old to maneuver a cart without knocking everything off the shelf- that's not something that would thrill these employees. I used all of my tactics to no avail. He was determined to push the cart. Well, little boys who don't listen to mommy have to be held by mommy. This didn't fly with Sam. He was throwing a fit like only his mother could throw. He was really screaming and kicking and hitting and trying to knock everything off the shelf. I kept my cool, but I did give him a pretty good spank to get his attention. I'm not sure what I expected his reaction to be, but in a weird way it calmed him a little. He was still crying, but it was more of a cry of shock and disbelief that I actually spanked him. It did, however, get him to stop throwing his arms and legs all over the place. A big part of me wishes I wouldn't have done it, but I guess it was ok in this instance?????

Monday, April 21, 2008

Happy day, Earth

I know that tomorrow is actually Earth Day, but I was hoping to get the word out to everyone tonight so they would be prepared to celebrate tomorrow. Just a few of my thoughts about the Earth and Earth Day...

I don't know exactly how, when, or why I developed such a love for this beautiful planet we live on. I'm pretty sure it all started with growing up on a farm in Oklahoma where there were always blue skies, white puffy clouds, open space, the smell of alfalfa, lots of trees, and clean air. I can remember the smells, running through the prairie meadow, playing in the dirt, and feeling the thick, cool, green grass on my bare feet. In each of those moments I always had an overwhelming amount of child-like love and respect for our great planet. I guess there were other things that contributed to my attitude. My mom was always talking about trees and mother nature. She spent a lot of time outside nurturing her plants in their natural uninhibited setting. She also always wore this blue Earth Day shirt that sent a message to me every time she wore it. Then there's my dad. He also made a major contribution to my Earth views. I know to others he probably seems dorky always riding his bike or the bus, buying things used and trying hard to not buy things made in China, being a minimalist, and the list goes on and on and on with him. My views and love for this great Earth have continued to grow with me into adulthood, and now here I am trying to do my part to protect this beautiful planet so that my children will have the same opportunity to experience blue skies, lots of trees, and plenty of clean air to breathe and clean water to drink.

Ok, Ok, I know it can get pretty political at this point. I'm not trying to start a political debate so please don't find it necessary to insult me in the comment section. Politics aside, we should all be aware of the great stewardship we have to protect this Earth for everyone. Our actions do matter, and without question there are many actions that are much better than others. For those of you who are already practicing an earth-friendly lifestyle, then applaud yourself. For those of you who aren't, then let Earth Day tomorrow be your start. There are lots of little things we can do (not drive everywhere everyday or combine errands, don't use plastic bags even if that means you actually have to ask for paper, plant a tree or nurture the ones around us, REDUCE, don't buy so much crap that we don't even need especially the stuff that comes from China, don't waste stuff, REUSE, buy stuff used when you can, RECYCLE even if you don't have a city curbside program, turn off your lights!!, do your own research about how to live amore sustainable life); imagine if you did these things, then your children would do them, and their children will do them, and their children would do them, and their children would do them, and their children would do them... you get the picture. You can make a difference. "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." (Ghandi)

So, Happy Earth Day. Love your Earth...

(And, Amy, don't forget to wear your beloved Earth Day shirt! HAHA!)

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Office

Pete and I are huge Office fans and were so excited about its return last week; we even had a kick off party with cake, streamers, and tuna (you die hards should get it). However, we have been a little disappointed the last 2 weeks. Did they hire new writers after the strike that just aren't as funny? Maybe we have just gone too long without it. Take the poll and let us know what you think. Better luck next week.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

missing child 101

we got our first taste today of the panic a parent must feel if their child goes missing. Sam went missing today. Before you panic and stop reading to call you should know he was found and is safe. It was quite a story.
I was doing a friend's hair this afternoon. Pete wasn't home, so we were on our with Sam and Will. As my friend was leaving I realized Sam was gone. We ran through the house screaming and searching for about 5 minutes, and he wasn't here. The doors upstairs were locked so I knew he hadn't gone out that way. The downstairs door wasn't locked, so I assumed he had gone out back. He wasn't there, but the side gate was slightly opened. Panic was setting in a little. It really set in when he was not in our yard, the neighbor's yard, or at Norma's. Thankfully Pete returned at this time because that's when I fell apart. We called the police, and they were here within 3-5 minutes and began their search. Thankfully we had so many neighbors to help look because I was so terrified I was useless. After about a 30 minute police search he was found. Where was he found you might ask? He was closed in our table ottoman FAST ASLEEP!!! WHAT!!!??? For those of you who know Sam well know that he has never once in his life laid down on his own and gone to sleep, much less in an ottoman that he had closed the lid on himself. I am now a believer that policemen can find anyone. :)

My immediate reaction was GRATEFUL that he had been found and was safe, and it was closely followed by humiliation for the hysteria and drama. For crying out loud, I called the police to find my child sleeping in an ottoman!! Let me explain the "crime scene" a little and perhaps more reason for embarrassment. We had been painting upstairs earlier today and that was still a mess. Sam had crumbled a chocolate cake all over the counter and floor while I was working. We had dirty dishes and lots of what I like to call "weekend mess". It looked like a disaster. Then top that off with the fact that I was a mother in hysterics who hadn't even showered today and you could tell. The backyard where the search was also taking place was covered with 2 weeks worth of dog land mines. We're looking like a real classy family at this point, but here's the clincher... Pete had found a funny add in his Handyman magazine for old people to improve their sex life and we had been laughing about it. Of course we left it open on the table. The page said "Sex.. It's never too late to learn something new", and it had 2 old people hugging. Yes, we look like really classy people.

After pulling myself back together I realize that we did everything right. If in fact he had been missing, then the first moments are the most important. I don't regret calling the police. I also don't regret my hysteria. In those crazy moments it became very apparent in ways that I can't even describe how much Sam means to me. The thought of waking up tomorrow without him weakened me so much that I couldn't even stand up. How does life keep happening if you lost a child? Pete and I were both afraid that someone had taken him. So many things were going through my mind. Was this my fault? Had I given him enough? Would we ever see him again? THANKFULLY he is fine. He has given us a story that we will be telling for many years to come.
I'm certain this is the first of many exhilarating moments we will have with him. We will definitely be sure to check the ottoman next time before calling the police!!
The ottoman where he was napping

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Nothing short of a maid

Ok, I must let my cleaning secret out. I've received many requests for the method. Please don't be disappointed. I wish it was a magical trick where you didn't really ever have to clean but everything stayed clean; unfortunately, you still have to do stuff. I have just found that if I stick to the same cleaning schedule every day and week my house seems to stay relatively clean. I assign different jobs to different days, so I'm not cleaning all day. Plus, I like being done with the cleaning for the day once my 2 jobs are done so I can spend more time playing with the kids and picking up daily mess/clutter. My schedule is below. It has worked well for me, but obviously we all have different types of houses and needs. Even with the schedule I realize that things will have to be surfaced at times throughout the week. Trust me, when Sam spills a carton of milk on Wednesday I don't wait until the next Tuesday to clean the kitchen floor. :)

MONDAY: upstairs bathrooms, laundry (including ironing)
TUESDAY: dusting all upstairs rooms, vacuum upstairs, clean kitchen & front room floors. I love this day because everything smells so clean
WEDNESDAY: dust & vacuum basement, vacuum stairs, downstairs bathroom
THURSDAY: laundry room, laundry
FRIDAY: DAY OFF! except for daily things like dishes, etc.
SATURDAY: 2 monthly jobs (blinds, baseboards, refrigerator, microwave, oven, windowsills, and all other sucky jobs that have to be done on somewhat of a regular basis). I don't like spending all day Saturday cleaning, so husbands and children come in really handy to help with this day.

I love tips, stories, routines, etc. that help keep your houses clean. Who knows, I may become such an expert that I may start a cleaning blog. :) Yeah right, keeping my house clean and family happy takes about 23 hours a day as is! love it though.
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