The Kids

The Kids

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Seriously-More Calebisms

-I was cleaning the bathrooms and right as I was scrubbing the downstairs toilet, Caleb decided he needed to pee.  In that toilet.  Because the other two must not have been good enough.

At least it was an educational experience.  He found that his yellow pee and the blue toilet cleaner make green.  He was pretty excited about that.

-Out of the blue the other day, Caleb announced, "Mommy, you are my friend."  After I thanked him and asked him why I was his friend, he told me, "Because you love me so much."

Just as I was enjoying the bliss of his words, he went on to say how he is friends with all of the bad people and people he does not know in the world, too.  I guess I rank on the same level as them.

Which brings me to his latest prayers.  He often includes "all of the bad people and the people we don't know and everyone in the whole world" in his thank you's to God.  That is a pretty big list and while I am glad he thinks about so many people, I find it odd that he thanks God for the bad people.  Or perhaps he is simply praying for them to not be bad?  In that case, I should take notes.

-After all of the years of fighting, hitting and teasing his sister, Caleb was suddenly convicted of a kind spirit for Abby.  He got very excited about "a great idea!" that he had, but it had to be a secret from Abby.  He told me in secret hushes that he wanted to buy her a Tangled doll. 

The Easter Bunny was going to bring her one in a few weeks, but I could not resist his passion so I agreed to take him to the store after school today.  He did not ask for anything for himself (although he did eye some Thomas gear and mentioned how it looked great) and excitedly picked out the perfect doll.  He decided to place it on her chair so that she would see it when she came home.  Within a half a second of her walking in the door, he yelled out, "Abby!  I have a surprise for you!!!"

She of course loved it.  And I loved how sweet he was being.  My favorite part of the entire thing was when, out of the blue, he said, "I really wanted to get her the doll because I love her so much."

Note this day-March 30, 2011.  Let us see how long it takes for this loving brother spirit to last.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Traveling With Babies

Sometimes the four-year gap from the newborn stage to the age of my older two really shows.  We finally got used to traveling with potty trained kids who play video games, watch movies and read books for long car trips.  We had a good system down, knowing when to stop, and not having to entertain them.

Enter Noah.

Before I get into the latest trip, I do have to admit that he is a great little traveler.  All of our kids learn pretty quickly how to sit in the car for a long time, driving to see my family 300 miles away.

As we came home this past week from visiting my parents, he was pretty good.  He did manage to spit up all over his clothes immediately after we had just made a quick stop, but since he is a boy who does not care about such things (seriously, the kid can fill his diaper in the middle of the night and blissfully sleep through it), we kept going.  After another stop, I changed his outfit so that he would be fresh and ready to go for the next 100 miles.

That lasted about 10 miles.

Allow me to paint the picture...

Nick was driving, Caleb was in the middle seat and Abby was in the back seat, next to all of the suitcases and "stuff" (amazing how much "stuff" kids need for a few days).  I climbed from the front seat to the back (thank you yoga flexibility), only hitting my head on the dvd player once and my elbow on the seat twice so that I could feed Noah his bottle.

(By the way, totally loving this bottle thing.  Instead of stopping to get him out and nurse and extend the trip by another twenty minutes, I can keep him in his seat for most of the feeding.  I guess I could have nursed him the same way and gave all the truck drivers a show, but I do have some sense of modesty.)

So, I perched on the entire inch of space left next to Abby, balancing the bottle in Noah's mouth.  Halfway through his meal, I heard an explosion coming from his rear end.  That boy has amazing timing.

Now, he could have pooped a few miles back when we stopped.  Or even earlier at the first stop.  But, no, my son decided to poop through his diaper and up his back in the middle of a huge rain storm, hail and all.

Oh, and in the I-71 stretch between Columbus and Cincinnati, where there are no signs of life anywhere.

So, I took him out of the carseat while Nick continued to drive (go ahead and judge, all of you non-parents), laid him on the changing pad (he was cushioned by Caleb's blankets) and I proceeded to clean up my little boy. 

All I can say is thank goodness for my little plastic bags that I keep in the diaper bag. 

It was really fun climbing to the very back of the van to find a change of clothes in his suitcase.  That was buried on the bottom.  While Nick swerved in the wind.

We are thinking about taking a vacation this summer that involves flying on a plane.  Lord help us all.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Color Of Hope

I am truly amazed at the way people come together in difficult times.

One of our campers, Julie Hanczar, was in a head on collision last weekend, while driving to take her SATs.  The first thing I heard was that she had many injuries, including two broken legs.  Then I heard she had a stroke.  The latest, and most tragic, is that the doctors fear she is brain dead.

However, after some of her close friends visited her, she is showing signs of life.  Squeezing a teddy bear, pursing her lips, brain activity on the monitor when she hears others talking...all signs of hope.

Say what you will about social media sites-in this case, Facebook is awesome.  Her friends immediately organized a page to have everyone wear teal yesterday, calling it the color of hope.  People signed up by the hundreds, even people who had never heard of Julie, saying they were praying for her. They took group pictures at school and posted them on the page. 

It was beautiful.

Abby and Caleb have been doing their part by praying for her.  While they do not know the extreme details to how she is doing, they keep praying for Julie.  Abby knows her as "the girl who wants to sell me her American Girl Kit doll."  When I was commenting on facebook back in December about Abby expecting a doll for Christmas, Julie sent me a message, letting me know I could buy her Kit and all of her accessories for a fraction of the price.  Abby has been doing chores to earn money for the Kit doll so Julie is on her mind a lot.

I ask you, readers, to pray for Julie.  For her family.  For the doctors.  For a miracle.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Toe Eating, Bubble Blowing Boy

Noah is five months old today and he has suddenly burst out with a hilarious personality.

His favorite thing to do?  Blow bubbles.  He can amuse himself for hours by spitting and creating fart sounds from his mouth.  It becomes even funnier when he pushes out from the other end at the same time.  Well, funny, until I find poop up his back and yet another outfit to spray with stain remover.

He is officially hitting the bottle.  By that I mean he hits it while attempting to hold it.  He has been eating so well from formula and is kind of liking cereal.  I think he would like it more if he would just stopped blowing bubbles long enough for the food to stay in his mouth. 

Apparently, this kid is a genius.  He already says, "Hi."  Okay, so maybe he is not really saying it, but it sure sounds like it.  When he sees someone (especially his dad) he lets out a long "Heh" sound. 

He is also quite the narcissist.  If you put a mirror in front of him, his face lights up and he jumps around.  Have you ever wondered what babies think about when looking in the mirror?  I wish we could remember what we thought about at that age.  Then again, those might be some pretty freaky thoughts.  Going through the birth canal...constantly pooping in our pants...dreaming about boobs...

Ok, so that last one might not bother the men.

Oh, and who needs toys?  This child is obsessed with his toes.  He has the flexibility of Adam on the P90X Yoga work-out (anyone who has seen this video knows exactly what I am talking about).  I have been finding him in his crib in a completely different direction thanks to his toe eating.

Noah continues to delight our family.  He is so happy, cracks up over the most random thing, and is very easy going.  Thank goodness someone in this family is.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Coming Out Of The Rut

Lately, I have been feeling the rut phase of my faith.  You all know the feeling-the complete opposite of the mountain top experience.

I used to have such passion for reading my Bible and learning everything I could about God's word.  I suppose that was easier to do in college, considering my major was Youth Ministries and I took many Bible classes.  And it was not too hard to keep my passion alive when I worked as a Youth Director for three years.  Every lesson I taught was a lesson to me since I spent so much time studying it in preparation.

One would think with the blessings of children, that faith would abound.  It does, trust me.  However, in the midst of taking care of everyone else in the house, I tend to use my "me time" doing not important things and use the excuse of "not enough time" for my quiet time with the Lord. 

My innocence of the church has broken me a bit as well.  Do not get me wrong-I love the Church.  It is just that we had a few bad experiences in a row of being forgotten, of lies and rumors, and of pain.  I love where we are members now, but I think those past experiences have left me feeling jaded about my faith.

None of this is a doubt in Jesus and Who He is-it is just a lack of excitement that I am feeling.  And it really is a feeling.  I know it is normal and everyone goes through ups and downs of their passion.

What is amazing to me is that it is not something I have done to suddenly renew this passion.  But, God spoke through my little boy.

The other night, Nick was putting Caleb to bed.  They were praying together and Caleb said to God, "Please be with my little sister that we lost.  I hope she's being good up there for You."

(For new readers, we had a miscarriage last year and the kids all think it was a girl.)

What he said touched my heart in such a way that I have not felt for a long time.  When I think about seeing our baby again someday, it brings such joy.  What Caleb said reminded me of the amazing future we have with our Lord someday.  It does not matter what I am feeling on a day to day basis-my faith remains and more importantly, God remains.

Can you imagine going through this life thinking it was all up to you?  That your feelings and attitude would ultimately determine your fate?  I am so gracious that God is more patient than me.  He still knows me and loves me even when I am selfish with my time and ignoring Him.  And He uses the quietest moments to reach to me, especially when I am not even looking.

"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."
Psalm 73:26