Tuesday, June 23, 2009

On Jon and Kate

I've been in a funk all day, and I believe Jon and Kate are to blame.

Just in case you've managed to escape all of the Jon and Kate hype, I'll get you up to speed. Go ahead and skip the next paragraph if this is old news. It's like a choose-your-own-adventure, isn't this fun?

So Jon and Kate have a reality show on TLC called "Jon & Kate + Eight" which chronicles the real-life joys and struggles of raising eight kids - a set of twin girls (age 8?) and also sextuplets (3 boys, 3 girls, age 5). Trouble has been brewing for the couple in the last few months. On last night's show they announced that they are separated, and actually filed for divorce yesterday.

I'm not going to go on and on about this, but I just need to get some things off my chest so that hopefully I can move on and not let their situation get me down any longer.

The first time I visited Gary's parents' house, there was a small wooden sign in the bathroom that said, "The best gift a mother can give her kids is to love their father." I'm so thankful that Gary and I both grew up believing and witnessing that.

It was quite evident in the interview with Jon and Kate that their kids are first in their family. That sounds so positive and innocent and hard to find fault with. But it's so dangerous. Of course parents should love their kids. OF COURSE. But a husband and wife need to love each other first.

In last night's show, Jon said, "it's not good for us to be arguing in front of our kids." While I don't believe in regularly having blow-outs in front of our kids, I think it's okay for them to occasionally see Gary and I have problems. But what they also see is how we apologize to each other and make things right. I can safely say that their world has never been shaken by seeing us disagree.

Kate said, the separation/divorce is "necessary because [her] goal is peace for the kids." Peace is never going to be achieved when parents don't love each other and the family is broken. My heart breaks for Jon, Kate and all of the kids.

Both Jon and Kate justify their decision to end their marriage based on the fact that it's a good decision for their kids. No. No it isn't.

They repeatedly talked about how it's all about the kids. I think that's why they're in this pickle. They even referred to their home as "their house" - referring to the kids. Jon said they bought it for them - "the security, the room, the land... all for them." I think they need to worry less about the security the house has to offer and worry more about the security that a loving marriage and family has to offer. That's where the kids will find real security - in watching a mommy and daddy who can't imagine life without the other.

I remember reading an article called Truly, Madly, Guiltily several years ago that received a LOT of negative feedback. The author, Ayelet Waldman was chastised for admitting that she loves her husband more than her kids. People were so upset with her claim, calling her an uncaring and bad mother. It's an excellent article. It's always stuck with me, because I'm also one of the weirdos who loves her husband more than her kids.

But I have a confession.

Gary and I are each having an affair.

While Ayelet may have been scrutinized for admitting she loves her husband more than her kids, I'll admit that I love the Lord first, even before Gary. Gary would say the same thing.

I think there's just an order to things.

No matter what comes our way, Gary and I married almost ten years ago on the premise that NOTHING would break us apart. We made a covenant before the Lord and before our family and friends that isn't ours to break. The only way we can keep it is by loving the Lord first, and then each other. Loving our kids and ignoring our marriage might keep our kids happy temporarily, but it sure isn't going to do anything to strengthen that covenant.

I'm sad for Jon and Kate and the eight kids who are being dragged through this mess. I'm going to continue to pray for them, and can only hope that they come to their senses and cancel the show so they can deal with this, without all of the world peering in, hoping to watch them fail. Isn't that why the ratings have been so high?

Hang in there, Jon, Kate, and your cute little eight.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

32 Things I Did Yesterday

  1. Woke up at 4:15 to pray Addie back to sleep after a bad dream.
  2. Woke up at 5:00 to feed Brody. TOO EARLY.
  3. Slept for 30 minutes and then got up.
  4. Went to VBS.
  5. Sang some catchy tunes.
  6. Led a group of 1st graders on a SonRock Kids Camp adventure.
  7. Made a bookmark.
  8. Left early.
  9. Drove to Janna's house for a little party.
  10. Stopped by a grocery store on the way to pick up popsicles, and it's safe to say that except for my kids, I was the youngest person there by 30 or 40 years. It felt like the Twilight Zone.
  11. Arrived at Janna's super cute house.
  12. Ate good food, drank yummy lemonade.

  13. Laughed with friends.
  14. Celebrated our friend Joanne, who is moving away for a year.
  15. Swapped stories, shared our hearts, and laughed some more with friends.

    These girls are blogging friends turned real life friends. How fun is that? Joanne said it best: "these women are exactly who they present themselves to be--only even better in real life." I would never have dreamed that starting a blog three years ago would've led to to wonderful friendships like these.
    (Pictured above: Holly, Janna, Amy (my sister), Paula, Joanne, (me!) - Not pictured: Kimberly and Amy (who doesn't blog, but is a delight!) (Missed you, Mer!)
  16. Came home. (FYI, Janna - 32 minutes door-to-door.)
  17. Was e-x-h-a-u-s-t-e-d.
  18. Laid down to nap... Brody woke up 3 minutes later.
  19. Brody did not want to snuggle.
  20. Gary came home.
  21. Tried to come up with a plan for the night.
  22. Came up with one!
  23. Changed it.
  24. Came up with another one!
  25. Went to Islands in Boulder for dinner. After using up the balance on a gift card and eating on Kids Eat Free Tuesday, it was under $5! Score! Left my birthday card from Emma on the table. Sad.
  26. Took the kids to see "Up" in 3D and more than made up for the $5 dinner. (Gulp! Movies are NOT cheap!)
  27. Both laughed and cried during "Up." I loved that Brody snuggled me and slept through most of the movie. The poor guy is teething and it's been hard on him.
  28. Wanted a picture of my kids and I in our glasses to remember the great night. BUT... Gary tried to take a picture and realized I forgot to put the memory card in. Doh! It's not the first time I've done that, and it really irks me. It really was a sweet moment though. So memory card or not, I'm showing you. First, us in our glasses:

    Second: Gary sad about the memory card.

  29. Went back to Islands to see if they saved the card I left on the table. They DID! I cried again. They said it was so sweet and they hoped someone would come back for it. How could I not?


  30. Felt lots of love from family and friends, especially on Facebook! Wow!
  31. Ate some Phish Food before bed. Perfect way to end a great day.
  32. Turned 32. :)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Ice Cream Sunday

I'm sitting down with a full heart after a full Sunday.

The hubster preached in church this morning and he did such a great job. I'm so proud of how he allows the Lord to speak through him. He asked me after church if it's hard to sit in the audience while he's preaching, and I said no, although I do get a little nervous for him sometimes. The hardest part is resisting the urge to stand up and shout, "That's MY husband!! Woo hooo!" If you want to hear it, his sermon should be up on the church website within a week, I'd guess.

We came home and went on a family bike ride with the new bikes Gary bought for our birthdays and presented me with on Friday, along with the "chariot" for the littler two. SO FUN. I've got to post pictures of our bikes one of these days. We're not serious bikers (ahem, at all) so don't laugh if you see me riding through your neighborhood... on my pink beach cruiser. (Nope, not kidding!)

Then while the boys napped, the girls and I camped out up in their bedroom window searching for funnel clouds since we were under a tornado warning. (I know, I know... head to the basement!) No luck on the funnel clouds, but we did see some ominous clouds!




After dinner, Gary left us to hang out with the middle school group. Seconds after he left, the girls came running inside after hearing the magical tinkling of the ice cream man. I've never let them spend their money on the overpriced sweets he peddles, but today I was a pushover. They each grabbed a dollar of their own and we headed outside.



I pointed out the colorful popsicle (the cheapest one up there for $1) and they were sold. Here's where it gets strange. Are all ice cream men creepy? They were when I was growing up, and I felt like today's was no exception.

So here's where the story gets funny - I was taking a picture and he said, "Wait, don't hand me your dollar yet... okay... did you get the picture?" Everything was kind of in slow motion, as if he expected me to be documenting every second of the transaction. "Um, yes, " I said. He asked, "Do you want to take any more?" At this point he had this unnatural pose and wouldn't let go of Emma's popsicle. It was a bit odd. Either he's encountered too many scrapbooking obsessed mommies or he's a camera hog. Needless to say, the picture below is totally posed - by HIM.



And this next picture? Totally posed by ME. Seconds later, Emma licked her popsicle and her tongue got stuck to it.



After the unexpected treat, some friends came and hung out for a few minutes and then I took the kiddos for another long bike ride.

So now I'm sitting here waiting for Gary to get home, a load of laundry running, the dishes clean and put away, and feeling like today was a great day. Great start to a great week - tomorrow VBS begins!

*** BONUS! Later this week I'll post a funny ice cream man story. You'll love it! Don't give anything away, LMNT... you know where I'm going with this one! ***

Friday, June 12, 2009

10 on the... 12th



Oops. I meant to do this on the 10th, but forgot. But better late than never!

Originally I had a theme planned for this 10 on the 10th post, but theme shmeme. We're going random.

1. I took a walk with the girls last night, each of us pushing a stroller with a baby in it (mine real, of course). I got choked up when I realized that Emma actually had to bend down a little bit to push her stroller. She's too tall for it. When did she outgrow her baby stroller? When did she start growing up? I get really choked up thinking of the day she outgrows wanting to play with the stroller and her babies.

2. Has anyone seen summer? It has somehow alluded Colorado. The beginning of June isn't usually known for scorching temperatures or anything, but lately the days have just been downright cold! We've had tornado warnings, hail and thunderstorms all week. Hello, pool? I miss you.

3. I read in the news that Brad Pitt bought this painting for $956,000. It's not my style, so I'm probably not appreciating like he does, but WOW. I don't get it.

Where would you hang it? It's 9 feet wide. It makes me think I should start framing some of my art (and Emma's and Addie's for that matter) and start selling it. Sheesh!

4. Tonight I'm going to my first official book club meeting. In my opinion, our first book was a dud. In fact, I haven't even finished it. I'm usually stubborn and will finish a book no matter what, but this one has been bor-ing! I'm on page 70-something and can't get into it. I skimmed the rest, but I'm looking forward to the next one. (And since you're probably curious, it's this book... which when I went to found the link, I realized has GREAT reviews. What's wrong with ME?!)

5. I went to the eye doctor yesterday to get my eyes checked and get new contacts. We started talking about the possibility of LASIK. Whoa! I thought we were a few years away from it (because I thought I had to be done having kids... and we're not sure we are), but it could happen soon! So we're thinking and praying about that. It would be amazing. I can't imagine what it's like to just open my eyes and SEE in the morning. Anyway, I had my eyes dilated and Brody did NOT like my ultra-cool glasses when I got home.


6. We've been watching a lot of Phineas and Ferb lately. That's one show I can watch with my girls and not count the minutes until it's over. It is FUN-NY. Who's with me?

7. Check out our seedlings! It hasn't even been a week! Addie's are the two rows on the far left. Hers must be slow, because I know she put some in. Emma's are the two on the far right, and she did hers randomly, and couldn't remember which ones had seeds and which didn't... so that might be it!


8. Tomorrow we're going to a BBQ to celebrate my cousin who is being deployed to the Middle East again. He leaves July 1st. I really appreciate his work for our country and the sacrifices his wife has to make. Thanks, Robb and Kristi!

9. I tried a new shampoo/conditioner this week after my usual one ran out. A few weeks ago I sniffed a friend's hair and asked what she uses. (Do you think I have a thing for smells?) Herbal Essences! My college favorite. So I'm trying it again. It's cheaper than my usual (yay!), and although it doesn't make my hair feel the same way (boo!), it sure smells good (yay!)!

10. First I had written out the title of this post - "Ten on the... Twelfth." But I changed it after I realized that Mer uses numbers. That, and how weird is the word "twelfth?" It doesn't even look like a word. (Which reminds me, the girls and I were counting to 100 this morning, and Addie prounounces words so funny. She had it all fairly accurate until we got to the "sevenbees." "Sevenbeeone... sevenbeetwo..." And also, every number ending in "7" was, "fiftysevenby... sixtysevenbee... sevenbeesevenbee...")

That's it! Be sure to visit Mer's 10 on the 10th post for links to other fun posts!

Happy weekend, everyone!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Weekend Recap

It's Monday again! Is time flying for anyone else? Do summers just go fast now that I have school age kids?

Friday night we went to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant that me gusta mucho. I sure like going out to dinner. I really like going to dinner with the whole family, even if taking three kids to a restaurant can be an adventure (not to mention pricey).

After dinner, we sat on the front porch for a little while, snapping a few pictures, enjoying the beautiful night, and having fun.




And then we went inside where Gary threw his delicate little girls on to couch again and again.




And again.



Saturday we just had the morning with Gary until he had to go to work, but we got a lot done! Gary and the girls washed the car...

And then the girls washed their bikes...



and I finished planting my flowers. Emma was a great little helper.






The girls and I also (finally) planted our little indoor greenhouse that I bought at Walmart a month ago (or more). I should've done it long before this. I was inspired by Natalie last year when she planted hers and yielded a gorgeous garden as a result! We'll see how ours turn out. The girls and I each chose a row or two to plant, with seeds of our choice.






Saturday night the girls took Brody for a few laps around the house after they got ready for bed. He will let them push him around on this disassembled shopping cart for hours. He sits so straight and still and just loves the attention. Emma was multi-tasking, as usual.




Sunday was a pretty typical day for us... but not so much for my mom, dad, sister and brother-in-law. They were in a TORNADO. They hid inside the bathroom of a restaurant, but they were okay.



If this happy little face is any indication of what kind of week it will be, then bring it on!



Thursday, June 04, 2009

No energy for a catchy title, folks

Alright. Today was good and bad and exhausting. I have no clever way to start or finish this, so I'm just going to spew. Buckle up... here we go!

First, the tiny little humans who live with me accompanied me for a hike this morning with some other moms. It was GREAT! Some people out there *coughKATHYcough* thought it might make for a funny blog story, but the truth is, it was just a great morning. I took my camera out of the car and then put it back in right before we started our hike, because I wanted to just enjoy it and not be preoccupied by taking pictures. Sometimes I get so worried about getting that memorable shot that I forget to just have fun. On one hand, I'm glad I didn't bring it because I enjoyed the hike like I intended, but on the other hand, it was gorgeous out that I regret not snapping a few pictures!

Can't win 'em all, I guess.

But it was just so breathtakingly beautiful up there today. We hiked the Mesa Trail (I think) and everything was so green and lush. It was foggy this morning, so there was a thin veil covering the Flatirons and mountains. It looked very magical. As we were eating our picnic lunch, a nice lady let us pet her horse and ask her questions. That pretty much made my day!

Then we went to Target to get a few things.

Birthday present for Emma's friend? Check!
Raisins for oatmeal cookies? Check!
Two new shirts because the ones the girls wore to the hike got so muddy I was too embarassed to take them elsewhere? Check!

Because then we had to go to the doctor, and they already looked like little ragamuffins with their ripped jeans and disheveled hair, I wasn't about to take them in with muddy shirts. I threw perfectionism out the window years ago, but I do have my standards!

Before heading to the doctor (since we had some time to kill), I treated us to Peach Milkshakes at Chick-fil-a. I think they might be my love language. YUM.

We sat in the car and drank our milkshakes and had some interesting conversations. One was about what we're doing tomorrow. Emma said, "You mean, tomorrowtoday?" The next 20 minutes were spent discussing if tomorrow is called "tomorrow" or "tomorrowtoday". Emma was getting frustrated, I was too, and I still have no idea what she was talking about. But Addie did, so I guess they win.

So... the doctor. I called the nurse on the way to the hike this morning to see if there is any sort of relief for a baby with allergies. Brody's been rubbing his red, puffy eyes and sneezing like no other this week. The nurse said no, and that I should bring him in. Rats! I didn't want to go in, I just wanted a quick answer over the phone! Oh well. So the doctor confirmed that it's probably allergies and told me what to do. It took 3 minutes. They could've told me over the phone. But that's okay. The girls got stickers out of the deal, so who's complaining? Certainly not me. Okay, maybe just a little.

The rest of the late afternoon and evening spiraled out of control. No one napped. Everyone whined. Mommy counted down the minutes til bedtime.

Brody showed me his new trick of throwing food off his tray. Gary calls him my "golden child" because he can do no wrong in my eyes (reality check - obviously I know he can!), but my little golden child was reprimanded tonight and pouted the biggest pout and cried the biggest tears I've ever seen. Even Emma looked at me wide-eyed and said, "It's sad... but it's kind of funny!" And it was!

But seriously, the girls went to bed and I had to sit on the porch to cool down. I was so frustrated. Then I went upstairs and scanned my shelves for a parenting book because obviously I have no clue what I'm doing. Does anyone have a tip for first-time obedience? For good listening? For sisters getting along... and then for sisters who are getting along TOO well to not gang up on their mom?

The worst part was that after I put the girls to bed I realized that I had totally forgotten about a baby shower I was supposed to attend tonight! I could kick myself. I'm so mad that I missed the celebration. My friend was showing off the precious baby she and her husband adopted a few weeks ago when he was born. I was excited to go and see sweet Ashton and hear Lynn's stories. I guess the only positive thing is that I was going to be bringing my kids with me to the shower since Gary's gone tonight... and it might've been more frustrating to have them there seeing the moods they were in tonight.

And now, there's a mosquito on the loose and he keeps buzzing my ear.

Okay, I'm off to study parenting books, find my fly swatter and wait for Gary to get home.

Whew.

I'm thankful tomorrowtoday's a new day! Aren't you?
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