Monday, October 16, 2006

My New Home on the Web...

Hello all you "A Mom's Life" readers!
I have a new web site I've been working on, and now it's up and running.
With the new software I'm using for my blog, I can now expand my site to include links and pictures more easily, as well as video down the road. So hop on over to the new "A Mom's Life" web site!
The link is
See ya there!!!

Friday, June 30, 2006

The Measure Of A Little Man

Aloha all!
The family and I just got back from an amazing journey off the mainland. Maui is one fantastic, awe inspiring place. Surfing with my eight-year-old Max was definitely my personal highlight. I laughed out loud, hollared his name and gave big "hang ten" hand siganls from the water as he deftly rode the first wave he tried all the way to shore. He was a natural, and I was the proud mother hen. I will say I caught some air myself, so I have achieved a whole new level of coolness in my son's eyes.
Afterward, he looked me square in the eyes, with an "I'm dead serious" tone and said "Mom...I think this could be my profession."
Wow, he may have to find another surfing buddy when he wants to practice in our own Lake Michigan. Can you justify moving to Hawaii to chase your third grader's surfing career?
Anyway, we are finally getting over the re-entry jet lag, and are now running head first into summer here on the North Shore of Chicago.
Tonight I had an epiphany about my boys as they pertain to summertime fun. Yesterday I found $.99 butterfly nets at the local hardware store and tonight we took the two boys on an evening firefly hunt. They caught ten between them, ran around the hood, made loads of noise, and got really dirty AGAIN. ( We mistakenly bathed them before the night hike.) To make matters worse (well, actually better), we stopped off at our good friend's house along the way to run around their yard, swing on their giant tree swing, and say goodbye as they packed for a little road trip.
When we got home, I decided to rinse my little men off once more before putting them into their newly cleaned bedding. I washed their feet, and knees, and hands and faces quickly, brushed their teeth, and plopped them between the sheets.
Going back to drain the tub, it all became so clear.
The true amount of unabashed fun my boys have each day can be easily measured by observing the total amount of grime left in the tub each night.
When else in ones life can this theory be applied? What rocks is that by being the mom, I get to catch fireflies, play in the dirt, swing on the giant swing and just get really grimey too...all in the name of great parenting.

So I say all of us should measure our summer fun using the grimey tub method. Channel your inner eight year old boy and go ahead and get down and dirty!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

breakfast in bed....again!!

Mothers Day.
It's a holiday that jewelry stores, florists and card shops love. I've heard some moms say they think it's over hyped and what they really want is a trip to the spa, and the day to themselves. Now, I love a good massage as much as the next chick, but I've realized that Mothers Day means way more to my kids than to me. To them, Mothers day is a their big chance to say "waa hoo mom!, you rock and we know it!"
In my house Mothers Day is beautifully predictable. Max and Tru sneak into our bedroom, give the spy-like silent gesture to my husband to meet them in the kitchen, before tip-toeing down the stairs. I pretend to be in a deep sleep, and stay in bed.
Much clammoring and crashing later, The three men in my life boldly walk up the stairs, tray in hand, and announce "Happy Mothers Day!" in their happiest voices.
I jump up...completely shocked, prop myself up with my pillows, open my hand-made gifts (this year it was a clay pinch pot and styrofoam cup vase with a paper flower sticking out the top), and watch as my sweet boys eat my entire tray of breakfast themselves. It's happened every year for eight years, and I would not change a thing. My husband and I just sit back and enjoy the bed full of crumbs, jelly stained sheets, and the unavoidable OJ spill. And we know in a month, the same thing will take place with my husband in the place of honor.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Back Seat Ponderings

Mom, do donkeys ever get sick?

I was just driving to the grocery store, feeling the warmth on my head thru the sun roof, when Truman piped up out of nowhere with this question. 'huh?" I said. " Do donkeys ever get sick? " I had to answer him, explaining that donkeys probably get sick, but I've never really seen a sick one. All I wanted to say was " what in the world made you think of that?" So I did. He explained in a very matter of fact way that he just thought that if there are animal doctors called vets, (which he learned about on Animal Planet yesterday), then animals must get sick, so he wondered if donkeys were one of those animals.

I find it so refreshing that kids verbalize the bizarre questions that run through their heads, never stopping to think that they might sound goofy asking them out loud. Can you imagine what would happen if we removed the logical filter that prohibits our random thoughts from flying out of our mouths? My husband probably wishes I had a little tighter fit on mine sometimes. How freeing would it be to let the crazy questions fly?

Okay, no joke, as I am writing this Truman is playing G.I. Joes at my feet. He just looked up and said " do all snakes swim?" I'm wrapping this up to go on-line and find out.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Oops, I did it again

I have once again been the big Blog slacker.
Spring has come in like a lion cub, and is going out like a full grown, roaring lioness.

It's May......the month my husband and I will attempt to move five years worth of Cr-p from one house to another.
We've known for several weeks that when May hit it was going to be all-systems go on the proverbial moving machine. But somehow we have also managed to live in complete denial too.
I always thought that the holidays were the busiest time of the year for me and my kids. No so. It's definately Spring.
First of all, given my kids pale, weakened figures due to lack of sun and warmth for five months here in Chicagoland, I feel obligated to play outside with them every moment possible. 50 degrees is the new 70.
Then there is the fact that everyone you know comes out of hiding, there's major end of the year school projects, plans for summer fun to be made, a wimpy body that needs to be forced to run and get in shape, and a slew of writing projects firmly whispering "finish me, finish me, finish me". I also volunteered to run the Spring book fair next year for Max's elementary school, Spring being the operative word. I figured I would have no real work til next March at best. Turns out the school wants a new vender, and we need to find one ASAP. Doesn't help that the new PTA president is a very good friend of mine who frequently goes above and beyond the call of girlfriend duty for me, so any thought of shirking my duties is out of the question. Oh, and my PR position on Truman's preschool board wraps up with me taking photos of all the out-going board members kids and putting them in frames to present at the last meeting. Then there is the desire to actually talk to my kids, make some half-decent meals, and keep the health department from knocking on my door due to excessive mud in the house.
So have I justified my lack of bloggery yet? I could go on, but I won't cause I'm sure many of you could top my list.
I really HAVE missed pouring out my random thoughts, and connecting with those of you who care to read them. I promise to visit here more often. So feel free to chat back and let me now what you are Spring a little too bouncy for you too?
Okay, time to go fill a few of these boxes sitting in my kitchen-they're blocking the coffee maker.......enough said.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Taming of the Crew

I have to start by saying that breakfast in our house is well, how should I put it…..loud.

Breakfast is the one meal we are all here for each day, and everyone wants to get their two cents in, usually at the same time.
My husband and I decided this year, that because he is not home during the week for dinner, it is important that breakfast be our family meal. We always sit down together with our boys and ask them how they’re doing and what they are looking forward to that day. We find out what they’re into this minute, and basically just catch up on life stuff before we all head our separate ways.
It works pretty well most days, but with kids who are four and eight, and me trying to fill my husband in on life at home, while his Blackberry vibrates off the table; we can have issues with taking turns and keeping the volume down.
And that’s not even counting the fact that after eleven hours of sleep; my boys are all jacked up on morning speed the moment they arise.

So this morning we were in rare form and our decibels hit a fever pitch. Everyone was talking at once about who needed more Cheerios, who’s toast popped up first, who hid Max’s homework folder, Which shirt Tru had to wear to school, What I still needed to pick for the new house, and how many minutes my husband had to return the overdue Care Bears video to the library before we had to pay another late fee.
I sat there in the din and realized our family meal was turning into something out of Animal House.

I quickly went to the CD player, piped some Beethoven into the dinning room, and announced a new table rule. If anyone at the table could not hear the music, we were talking, (or making various other little boy noises) too darn loud.
Everyone looked at me, listened for the music, and decided that the “new rule” was all good. No kidding…the rest of our morning nosh was lovely. We still talked, and laughed and made silly noises, but we could actually hear each other. And I never once had to tell them I was beginning to get a headache, or that someone was about to be booted from the table for disorderly conduct.
Now if I can just figure out a way to keep them from building a 3-d replica of the Taj Mahal with their waffles.

Hey, ya got to pick your battles right?

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A Little "Good Job" Goes a Long Way

I was fully prepared to post today about my decision to retire the lawn service….I know, slow news day.
Then I received an e-mail from my friend Donna. She had just gotten back from a trip to California with her family, and she had a great story to share.
Her husband had already flown out for a two week business trip, and she was flying out with her three little girls (7 and under!), to meet him.
She said that she had prepared the activity bag, got the airport scavenger hunt together, and did her normal “keep the kids happy” routine on the plane.
As she was gathering up her goods to de-board, a gentleman came up to her to give her a piece of his mind.
He looked her in the eyes and said, “I wish I had a blue ribbon to give to you, instead I only have this, and handed her a little piece of paper on which he scribbled “Most Terrific Mom Award”. She said that it was truly the best prize she had ever gotten…ever.

How many times have we seen other moms doing an outstanding job with their kids, and not said a word. We live in a society that screams “don’t enter my personal space!” But that not only keeps the creeps out, it keeps us from telling a perfect stranger “good job” or “well done”. After hearing this sweet story, I am committed to noticing and telling other moms what they are doing right.
If actors can have a billion awards shows each season to hand out trophies for the same four movies, than surely we moms can applaud each other once and awhile for the great work we do everyday to grow great people.