Saturday, July 26, 2008

Innate Differences

Boys and girls are just innately different, aren't they?! I speak only from my own experience of having first a daughter and then two sons, but wow, what a difference! I say this because of what happened today with Bryson.

I was about to take my two boys for a power walk when I realized both of the tires to my jogging stroller were flat (that should tell you how often I actually use the jogging stroller). I called my husband to have him explain via the phone how to use his air compressor. I was very proud of myself as I successfully followed his directives. As I finished up I peaked around the front of the stroller to see Bryson eating a large piece of foam...yes, foam! What in the world?! I realized that he had taken the cover off of headrest and proceeded to bite 4 chunks out of headrest. He just looked up at me with his big blue eyes, totally oblivious as to why my face looked the way it did: shocked, confused, and a bit irritated. What is the child thinking? He does get enough food.

My daughter would have never done anything like this. When Hailey was only 9 months old I could trust her with my jewelry box. She would sit on the bathroom floor carefully examining each necklace while I showered. Not once did she break or harm any of my most delicate pieces of fake bling. On the other hand Bryson just looks at my jewelry and it needs to be fixed. In fact most things in our home that are broken are due to his curious little hands.

Is it this way in other homes? From what I hear, I think it is. It must be one more evidence of God's creative design. These innate differences between boys and girls could very well be what leads to much of the tension between men and women. But despite frustrations and destroyed objects I have to remember that God indeed created with purpose.

So next time you have a heated "discussion" with your spouse, pray that God would help you see their perspective...because indeed "men are from mars and women..." you know the saying.

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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Mommy, I'm scared

So I am addicted to (listening to it right now!). If you haven't discovered this gem you have to jump over to this site and type in your favorite artist or song for a personalized, FREE radio station. It is great! My favorite "station" right now is "Sara Groves" radio. She is a Christian artist with a natural sound.

With that said, the music was streaming at dinner (over the chaos; when my husband works nights I think listening to music gives me a sense of not being alone with three preschoolers.) A song titled It is Well by Jeremy Camp came on. It is an old hymn that he has redone but it just blesses me. There is one part that talks about Jesus' return. I said to my kids, "This song is talking about when Jesus comes back." My 4 yr. old said, "Come back where?" "To earth," I said. (Side note: I have a Masters in Divinity and my nerdy side loves to sit and talk theology....but it just doesn't work that well with a 4 yr. old!)

The conversation continues, "Why will He come back to earth," she innocently asks her mother who hasn't talked to many adults all day and needs some intellectual conversation. "He will return to bring all who love Him to heaven," I said as I held back a Calvinistic debate. "How will we know He is back?" "Well, the Bible says that there will be heavenly trumpets that sound and then Jesus will meet us all in the sky," I say, "Do you know how a trumpet sounds?" Hailey and Bryson then blow their imaginary trumpets. "How will we get in the sky?" she asks. "I guess we will have new bodies that somehow fly." Silence falls across the dinner table...this is a rare occasion. Hailey looks up at me with her big brown eyes, "Mommy, I'm scared." "Oh baby don't be scared, mommy is with you. And when it does happen daddy and mimi and pawpaw will all be there too. You won't be alone." "Mommy, I'm scared." Then Bryson, the 2 yr old says, "I sared." At this point I can't help but laugh. "Guys, there is nothing to be scared of." "I don't want to fly," says Hailey. "God knows you perfectly," I say, "Maybe He will send you a helicopter." "I'm scared. I'm scared." "I sared. I sared. Fly. No. Fly. No." "OK, OK, everyone calm down. There will be no flying tonight, we are going to just go take a bath. Is everyone ready for a bath? How about some ice cream?"

I think I will hold off on more end time conversations.

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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

That's a diaper

Funny thing happened...

As I have mentioned before I am a "cloth diaper convert," meaning that I switched from disposable diapers to cloth diapers 5 months ago, just after my 3rd child was born.

So, I finished working out the other day and went to pick up my kids from the gym daycare to find my infant with a cloth diaper snapped around his neck...yes, his neck. Why, you ask, would a bulky cloth diaper, faintly stained in one area with poo, be snapped around his neck? This was my question as well. However, I held in my hysterical laughter and simply asked, "Was there a problem?" "He was drooling so much that I thought a bib would help," said the childcare worker. "Yes, a bib would be wise, " I said. ("But this is a diaper!" I thought.) Trying not to embarrass the woman, I simply said my thanks and led my three children outside.

Once we were out of her sight I unsnapped this monstrosity, allowing my son's poor neck to see the light of day. I looked at him and said, "I am so sorry." He just smiled at me and did the baby dance.

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God made me this way

Wow, talk about my daughter getting me right in the heart. The other afternoon just after a quiet nap time [Side note: Isn't nap time the greatest "invention"? I honestly do not know that I would make it without nap time.] As I was saying, after nap time my two eldest and I had congregated around the microwave where popcorn was a' poppin'. The serene moments that I had just been savoring not 15 minutes prior were now replaced with loud demands and vies for attention. I said while cringing, "Could everyone please use a little bit quieter voices? Mommy's ears need it to be softer in here." My daughter quickly replies, "But mom, God gave me this voice and it just happens to be loud." I totally stopped in my tracks. Wow. "You're right," I said, "God did give you that voice for a reason."

So she has been listening! I keep trying to teach my kids that God has made each of them so special; that no one else in the world is like them. He has made them with great purpose and they will only be fulfilled as they walk in His plans for them. So she hits me with, "God gave me this voice..." I guess I should accept that her "inside voice" is more like an "outside voice." Maybe she is going to be a street preacher.

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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Grocery Store Experience with Preschoolers

Longest break entries for the month of June! Life with 3 little ones steals away all time!

I just have to document my grocery store experience today with my almost 4 year old, almost 2 year old, and 6 month old. WOW! Talk about pushing my patience. It began with piling into the cart with the attached blue "police car" in the front. Not only is this contraption impossible to steer, I am sure it is just swarming with germs. So we reach the deli and my 4 year old is bellowing, "I want a cookie!" "How do you ask?" I reply. (How often do I say that each day?) So after giving my kids a cookie that is as big as their little faces, I think, "Surely that will last our entire trip to the store." What was I thinking? Aisle 2 and they are both saying (loudly), "I WANT TO GET OUT." Are you kidding me? We just got here. We are only on aisle 2! I still have to get juice, cereal, meat, household supplies, frozen items, dairy products, and things for the birthday party. Are You Kidding Me?!

By aisle 4 I have threatened multiple consequences but how am I possibly going to follow through. I just want to get out of here. Aisle 6 everyone has to go to the potty. Seriously?! So I fight the cart all the way to the back where the restrooms are hidden and release my 4 year old and 2 year old from their seats. We spend the next 10 minutes in the restroom as I try to convince my 2 year old that he really does need to "go potty" so he doesn't have an accident; all the while holding my poor 6 month old in one arm who has heard way too much "loudness" for a baby. Finally we make it back into the "police car", but I neglect the seat belts this time. By the end of the dairy aisle both of the older kids are hanging out of the car. Literally standing on the doors to the car with their arms propped on the roof. By the chips at the front of the store my 2 year old is standing...yes, standing...on top of the police car. Can you picture this with me? Being the calm, sane stay-at-home mom that I am I politely ask him to get off of the car or I will have to belt him in.

Can't I just go to the store and get groceries???

So we make it to the check-out line, like a traveling circus. I allow the two eldest to put items onto the much for the chips that are now completely crushed. As I pay I look over to see my 2 year old on the wheelchair at the front of the store. The following thoughts go through my mind, "Can he hurt that? No, I don't think so. He is fine...he is quiet. I wonder if they will say something to me?" All of our items get bagged (yes, I remembered my own canvas, earth-friendly bags) and as we proceed to the door my 2 year old decides it is time to flail. A kind-hearted lady sees my situation and asks if she could please help me push the cart to the car.

I know they say that I will miss these days...but I just don't know.

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