Wednesday, September 11, 2013

12 Years Passed - What Do We Remember?

Twelve years ago today I left my four week old baby and two older children with their great grandmother and headed off to work. As I dropped of something in the nurse's office she made a comment that a plane just crashed into one of the towers of the World Trade Center. I remember thinking it was odd, and sad, but I thought it was a private, small plane that had flown off course. Of course, it didn't take long before I found out what was really happening. Even then, I had no idea how much damage those two planes would do. As teachers, we were asked to continue teaching; however, I watched as many of my students were picked up early to go home with family and I waited, with anticipation, to find out how families of my coworkers were doing. It was a frightening day.

Today, what I want to remember is the solidarity we felt as a country, coming together in grief and shock with a determination that we would triumph. What I want to remember was the fear because, as negative as that emotion is, it keeps us mindful that there is need for caution and thought. What I want to remember most are the heroes born that day, putting the lives of others before their own lives. I want to remember that we felt united, and I hope that it does not take more tragedy for our country to regain the feeling it seems many of us have lost. Children in school now don't remember that day, they were too young or not even born. It is our job to remind them, not of the frightening images, but of the cost of freedom.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

"I Must Have Done Something Good"

Most days I feel like a pretty lousy mother. I don't like getting on the floor to play, it actually hurts. I hate when they make big messes so I don't like play dough or slime, and summer is hot, so I'm not running around outside. I beat myself up all the time about everything I don't do, that I thought I would do, as a mom.

Sometimes though, on nights like tonight, I know that I'm not all bad. I have little, reassuring moments of validation that I am doing something right. Very right, I might say. 

I took Ayden out by himself tonight. It's important for me to spend some time alone with the kids. They don't get much 'mom' time on a day to day basis, and I love to take them away from the house and touch base with them. Sometimes we have very meaningful conversations and sometimes, it's just for fun. Well, it's always fun.

Ayden chose to eat at Panera. That kid is a hoot. He likes the noodle soup in a bread bowl. Then we went to the sporting goods store because he's been asking for sandals. I figured it would be a good time because they go on sale mid-summer. Ayden decided he would save his soda for Dillon and half his cookie too. I thought that was very sweet. Next we went to Five Below. If you've never heard of that place it's like a dollar store, but better. Everything is $5 or below so the quality of most of their stuff is better than a dollar store. As we got out of the car I told Ayden he could pick out one thing, anything, in the store. He informed me that he was going to get something for Dillon. I was so touched that he was going to give up his choice for his brother. I thought to myself, "Wow, I don't get down and dirty with my kids but, at the end of the day, they will be good people." And I'm ok with that.
Dillon and Ayden with their gumball machines from Five Below.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Go On Take the Money and Run

I don't know anyone that likes to be broke. I know it drives me crazy. I like to get out of the house and find fun things to do. Unfortunately, this usually requires dinero, even if just for gas. So far this summer I have been at home with no money. I splurged here and there - spending $1.05 at McDonald's on a soda to share with Ayden and Dillon while they played, going to the dollar store and getting a couple of 'treats' to give the kids, things like that. I even went really wild one day and got the kids one thing each off the dollar menu at McDonald's. You may ask, what else have I been doing to occupy my 'free' time? I read the horribly written novels off the free list on my nook, I sleep, I play Lego Harry Potter with Dillon, and I police the children so no one gets an injury we can't afford. None of this really satisfies the rambling urges I get honestly from my dad.

Here is the question for you - have you ever done something that you really can't afford to do? That you really shouldn't do? Well, I'm about to - tomorrow. Tomorrow I get paid. Tomorrow I take the kids to King's Dominion. Side story: Way back, for Christmas, we decided to buy season passes for the family again since it provided so much fun the previous year. We didn't get them last summer since we were taking a trip to Houston. When our income tax came we really could have used the money for other things, but it was a gift and a promise so we went ahead and got the passes. I took the kids over spring break when the park first opened and I haven't been back since. They are beyond excited for tomorrow.
This is the only photo I have from that day of all the kids since the older ones took off. 
Why is this such a bad idea? Yes, we have the passes, but the park costs money other than entry fees. The gas alone is a big problem. However, the joy on my kid's faces and the time we will spend together is beyond worth it to me. Sometimes, you just have to bite the bullet, take the money and run! (But not like Billy Joe and Bobby Sue)

Enjoy viewing some more happy children during spring break!
Ayden loves the bumper cars.

Doesn't Dillon look like he's built for speed?

Sunday, June 23, 2013

I Swore I'd Never...

When I was a young gal, in my teens, I said never all the time. "I will never listen to oldies stations on the radio." "I will never put my baby in a harness!" "I will never be out of the 'fashion loop'."

I have had to eat my words so many times I've lost count. I enjoy some of the current music, but for the most part, I am still an 80's, early 90's, kind of girl. I put my first child in a harness the first time I had to go somewhere that did not allow strollers and I was huge and pregnant. Then there is fashion. Okay, I was never huge on fads, but I was aware of them and enjoyed many of them. The latest one has me scratching my head though. Socks.

It's been going on for a while. If you haven't seen this, you may need to check your mouth and ears for the sand that must have entered as you buried your head in the sand. Caleb is the one that brought it to my attention, of course. 

He is the one that seems the most concerned with fashion in this house. At first, I figured he was just being neurotic; however, it turns out that all the boys are really into this. Nike Elite socks. Of course, it had to be Nike right? Other brands have tried to imitate the look, but Nike is still the one that the kids wear. Of course, if you're going to wear socks that cost $15 a pair, (yes - for one pair) it would be silly to wear jeans. So, even in the dead of winter the boys wear shorts. They're so smart at this age. The school where I teach is a campus style school, so we had boys is massive coats and shorts just so everyone could see their elite socks.

Of course, since I am writing about it now, the trend will die. And, you know what, that is fine with me. I'm tired of my kids spending $15 for one pair of socks. 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Help a Girl Out

Now that my kids are older and, well let's face it, boring, I have run out of ideas for the blog. Honestly - I am in such a slump when it comes to writing topics. I used to post all my pictures here for family to keep up with me. Now I have facebook where family can see all our obnoxiousness. So where does the cORRner go from there? Ask me a question, give me an idea! I need a jump start for my dead battery here! Because I pretty much feel like this lady:

I will tell you a story though. Get ready it's pretty freaky. Last night I dreamed I was in the next Star Wars movie. All the original cast were there in their original parts (who else would they play Heather?). I think the dream was inspired by this  and other similar rumors. As much as I love the first three Star Wars movies, I hope this isn't true. I'm afraid it would end up 'made for TV' movie quality and it would just be sad. Regardless, my parents were Luke and Leia, I know, figure that one out - gross. They came to visit me incognito because they were in hiding. Leia was like a jedi hippie and drove an x-wing car. Basically that means it looked like a white 80's corolla with a big flap on the driver's side. We set off to visit the grandparents and my real dad ended up pulling over to buy me a soda. Interpret that dream please! Or should I say nightmare. Of course there was more to the dream. I just can't remember it all since I was awoken at 6:30 am by a sick little boy.
Anyway, let the nightmares begin.....

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Texas Summer

Texas Summer

Rare london
$40 -

ASPIGA toe thong
$86 -

Warehouse leather crossbody
$86 -

Jack will

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Christmas Time is Near

I have always loved this time of year. It feels trite to say that, so many people do, but it is the only time of year when I feel like mankind is just that... a little bit kinder. I feel closer to other people because many of us are celebrating something special together. I wish that the feeling could be held on to year round - but I know that's a big wish. At this time of year it's easier to give to others selflessly. I suppose most of us are thinking of our Heavenly Father's greatest gift, his son, and it makes holding on to our money seem a bit silly.

Music is always the easiest way for me to feel uplifted, to feel the spirit. It is very powerful. Perhaps for that reason, my favorite thing about Christmas is the carols. I love the music at this time of year. I used to think I'd want to listen to it year round, but now I know I don't. I enjoy having it set aside, for this special time of year. My friend Jenna recently blogged about her five least favorite and five favorite Christmas songs. It's funny because I was already composing a post in my mind about my favorite songs. So, in response to Jenna asking about other's favorite songs, I'm going to share mine.

1. "The Little Drummer Boy"

This is by far my favorite Christmas song. It just seems to convey the meaning of Christmas in one perfect little story. The song is humble and meek, but also giving and grateful. I admit, I also really like drums and rhythm, I always have. I've had this song memorized for as long as I can remember. When I got my first apartment in college my mother bought me a little drummer boy that moved and played the drum. I put him under my tree and took such good care of him. My mother's favorite arrangement of the song was by David Bowie and Bing Crosby. I always thought that was funny since she was not a big David Bowie fan. If you've never heard it you really must. Now, I do love the original, unadulterated song, but this reminds me of my mother and the message is beautiful.

2. Handel's Messiah:  "Hallelujah"

No other song makes my spirit sore like this one. It's power is indescribable. I am moved to tears by the music, the words, the voices... It is joyful. This has to be similar to what those of us up in heaven sang when Christ was born. It is celebratory, yet reverent and respectful. I really don't have much more to add. The song speaks for itself.

3. "Christmas Song"

I love the innocence of this song. As the youngest in my family I know there is a part of me that will never really grow up. Songs like this bring back childhood memories and notions. Children are so pure in their intentions and thoughts. They really know what Christmas is all about. They love Baby Jesus and love that they get to celebrate his birthday. They have a pure joy and excitement that is contagious. This song also makes me laugh since my sister always thought it said, "Sweatsocks roasting on an open fire." She was like, "Why would you put sweatsocks on the fire and sing about it?" Hilarious! My favorite version of the song is by Karen Carpenter. Her voice was amazing, so smooth and classic. It never goes out of style.

4. "We Three Kings"

I love the story of the three wise men. Their faith is beautiful to me. These men were kings. They could have sent anyone to deliver gifts to the new baby, but they wanted to see him and worship him. They traveled so far and for so long, I don't think the scriptures give a good idea of how long it took them to find Jesus. My mother was so funny setting up her nativity. She would never let us put the wise men with the stable. She made us move them far in the distance. She reminded us that they didn't set out to find him until the they saw the star in the sky, when he was born, and had so far to travel that he was not a newborn when they got to him. But they did find him and knew who he was. The beach boys recorded, by far, my favorite version of this song.

5.  "O Holy Night"

Another song that tells the story of Christ's birth. Another song that makes my heart sing. It makes me wish I could sing it as beautifully as I hear it in my head. It gives reverence to this special day, but it also reminds us about his life's mission. It brings peace to my heart. Aaron Neville has the most amazing voice and I love the bluesy sound of his version.


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