Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Onset of Old-Timers

Have you ever felt like you have a blanket of fog over your brain? Sometimes it is just plain hard to think. Christmas stress (should be an oxymoron, but it's not!), a non-stop chattering five-year old and a bought with insomnia, have left me a little bit hazy. My mind will be racing a million miles an hour trying to process everything it's being taxed with, then Chase will jump in there with questions that no well-thinking human being should have to be subjected to. It rattles me and makes me feel old.
This morning, Chase and I were finishing a project for a Christmas present for Daddy. Chase asked me a question that left me like, "Duh, uh, mmm." To sound intelligent and like I could field the question thrown at me, I said, "Well, Chase, I don't know. Let me think about it." To which he responded,

"But you can't think, Mom, remember?"

"What do you mean I can't think, Chase?"

"You can't think anymore, Mom. Remember, you're getting old."

I thought that children were supposed to help keep you young. Not remind you that you are getting old. It's all down hill from here. Heaven help us.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Symbols of Christmas

I think the symbols of Christmas are amazing. One represents peace and calm. One represents stress! Our bishop strategically placed the chair for Santa's visit to our ward Christmas breakfast, beneath a picture of the Savior. I thought that was clever. The picture before is of a live nativity held in a historical barn down the street from our house. I have to say, it was pretty neat. I wasn't sure what I would think of it, but it was done really well. You got the meaning. Chase was riveted. He sat on a hay bale in front of the manger and reverently stared, without moving. If you know Chase, that's a miracle in and of itself.
Chase was not that much less reverent when he sat on Santa. He was so funny. When asked that question that Santa asks best, he carefully put his arm around Santa's neck, pulled him slowly down and whispered quietly in his ear, "A remote-control speed boat".
I am thrilled that Chase was more in awe of visiting a stable and the manger. It is hard to have Christmas with children and not involve the man with the bowl full of jelly. You have to have a few of your young years dedicated to believing. But thank goodness we have opportunities during the Christmas Season to bring us back down to earth. It helps when Chase starts talking about Christmas presents, he reigns in his excitement, keeping it in check by saying,
"Let's remember, though, this really is about Jesus' birth day".

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Happy Birthday, Chaserooni

The birthday bike

Things I love about this boy:

I love that he starts chanting, Oh Dear, when I come at him with tickle fingers blazing

I love that when I stub my toe (50 times a day) that he stops what he is doing and asks if I'm okay

I love that he is in the habit of making his bed every day

I love that he is creative enough to choose popsicles and crayons for costumes, and penguin and gingerbread men for birthday parties

I love that he is crazy enough choose Jamba Juice and Lucky Charms for his birthday dinner

I love that Chase's prayers literally melt your kneecaps

I love the fact that Chase's favorite place to eat out, is my kitchen

I love that he loves me enough that he tries to promise me that he won't grow up and quit being my little boy, then at least telling me that he will love me forever if he accidentally does grow up.

I love that he honestly thinks that getting married will mean abandoning his parents

I love that he is already looking forward to his baptism and saves money in a mission jar

I love that he is my boy and that we have had 5 WONDERFUL years being his parents

We Love You, Chase!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Honest Dishonesty

In my last post, Pearls of Wisdom, I forgot an important one: How to loose your standing in the Celestial Kingdom...Have children. I always thought I was doing okay on my way to the Pearly Gates, with the normal, not so incriminating offenses. Then, I became a mother. I have become a professional liar, coated with the excuse that, it's for the best. So, not only do I lie, but I justify it. You know the saying, you can justify yourself right into.... Well, I tried a stunt the other night that had a hilarious backfire.

Chase is great friends with his cousin Zach, who lives a couple hours away. They were coming to spend the weekend with us. They left their house about suppertime, which would put them here at bedtime. I am a stickler about bedtimes. It is one of the weaknesses that is leading me off the straight and narrow. I am a beast when I am tired, dealing with a child that is tired. I like bedtimes. I was torn between letting Chase stay up late to greet Zach, or having him asleep when they got there. I wanted him to be rested and fun the next day. I decided against both ideas, and went right to lying to my child. There is only one clock in our house that he can read right now. So, when eyes were averted, I took the clock down, set it forward an hour, and put it back. Magically, it was now 7:30 pm! I announced to Chase that it was time to get ready for bed. He looked at the clock, checked the time for himself, and said, okay. Guilt, guilt, guilt. I was actually pretty okay with my dishonsety, except for the fact that he took it so well, and my husband shaking his head every two seconds asking me if I felt okay about what I had just done.

I WAS feeling pretty proud of myself, until my sister-in-law called, en route to our house. She mentioned that it really would be nice for Chase to stay up and see the kids. I hemmed and hawwed and finally decided to relent and let Chase stay up. While I was still on the phone with Birgitta, I grabbed the clock down and changed it back to 6:30. Chase, as if he really knew what was going on, froze in front of the clock, dropped his jaw to the ground, said quietly,
"What the?", then ran into my legs, hugging me while exclaiming, "Thank you! Thank you!! Thank you!!" So, in one fell-swoop, I am being sung as a hero, hailed for my magic ability to turn time. Chase knew nothing of my infraction. He only knew that his mother had somehow bought some precious time for a five-year old to stay up late to see his cousin. Wow. If he only knew. As I said in my post before, the only thing that will make him feel better about all of the lying and hypocrosy that seems to flow from well-meaning parents, is the fact that when he is the Dad, his turn will come!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

My Pearls of Wisdom

Over the years, I feel that I have received a lot of really good tips, advice and pearls of wisdom that have helped me live a generally productive and happy life. Some great ones are:

Cleaning a caked-on microwave: Cook a bowl of water in microwave for 3-4 minutes, everything then just slides right off.

Hard water stains: Vinegar is a miracle cure for hard water, including running washing machine and dishwasher, empty, with one cup of vinegar.

Making friends for life: take someone a loaf of hot, homemade bread

Down in the dumps: get more sleep, increase the intensity of your prayers, read your scriptures.

I could go on an on. I have had some really smart people in my life. I have decided now, that it is my turn to impart my wisdom; to share my wealth of knowledge that I have accumulated with life experiences and mistakes made. So, here are my tips for you.

How to bump into someone you haven't seen for a long time: Go to the store without makeup, a wet, frumpy hair-do, while wearing the most ill-fitting dirty clothes you can find.

How to increase your vocabulary: Learn a new word today. It is almost guaranteed that you will hear this new word that you have never heard before several times over the next several days.

How to enjoy the taste of crow: use blanket statements like "I always" and " I never".

How to ensure a great Sabbath (aside from the obvious): Make sure you have lots of chocolate, milk, toilet paper...and a good nap.

How to attract visitors to your home: Don't clean for several days. Wait until you have an explosion of toys, laundry, groceries and projects. Then, they will come.

How to ensure you have no visitors: Clean your house.

How to give your children hope for the future: Give them phrases like, "Don't worry son. When you grow up, you can be the hypocrite. But for now, it's my turn."

How to learn to love a photo of you that you can't stand: Gain a few more pounds, return to the photo, then hear yourself say, "Wow, I wish I looked that good again!"

Passing Gas: It is greatly suggested that you do not try and eek one out in the presence of a child. They have big ears and highly under developed filters, which allow them to say anything that they want, very loudly. Your "infraction" will no longer be a secret.

And finally:

Learn to laugh at yourself. It makes it so much easier when you find out that we are all laughing at you as well.

I hope you all feel enlightened, encouraged, and hopefully even a little smarter. Please feel free to pass along your little gems!