Sunday, July 27, 2008


Disclaimer: this is not a griping post but rather ponderings of mine. In case it starts to sound like griping and moaning and groaning, please remember that I love my husband. He is a great dad and provider for us all.

I was out of the house today for about 4 hours. I went shopping for the kids' school clothes and also my weekly grocery shopping. I went with my sister in law and my niece. We even took a break and stopped and had some food and drinks (but I will deny that part if asked). I accomplished quite a bit in only 4 hours, especially if you compare what I would normally get done,if I had taken my kids with me.

I don't get to go out by myself often. I run to the store to get milk sometimes. Or even if I do go for an extended amount of time, I take at least 1 kid with me. It gives me time with 1 child exclusively for some time.

My husband is a wonderful dad but a terrible mother. He doesn't know where anything is or at least he pretends he doesn't. Things that come naturally to me, they never occur to him. Like feeding the children. And changing diapers even if they aren't leaking or stinky. But the kids always survive.

But. Whenever I do manage to go anywhere by myself, I am always greeted with a messy house and lots of whining and sippy cups thrust in my face with "plweeze mommy. I want some." Or "Can I.." Or "Dad wouldn't....". To be fair I do also get greeted with lots of "MOMMY!!!" and hugs and kisses. And that's always fun.

But it makes my wonder. If something (God forbid) was to ever happen to me, how would my husband cope? Besides being beside himself with grief I mean. Would it ever occur to him to go and buy more diapers? Or more milk before breakfast the next morning? Would he know where the fabric softener was? Would he even know how to use it? Would he know that Jarrett doesn't like Jeven using the blue sippy cup? Would he know that the yellow skirt in Josie's drawer is too short for her and she can only wear it to bed? How long would he let the filth and grime pile up before he cleaned?

I tried really hard today to not complain about the shape of the house or the fact that I have a sneaking hunch that hubby spent most of the time in his chair while kids did whatever, thirsty and hungry.

From him, I got the greeting of the silent treatment. And I thought that unfair as I had brought home treats. When I asked him if he was mad, he said he didn't know that I was going to be gone so long. Well, duh!! If I had told him how long I was going to be gone, I would have never gotten away!

But how long until it's not such a big ordeal to get away for awhile, by myself? Whenever I do, it's like I have left motherless children behind. And I have to apologize for being gone at all.

Friday, July 18, 2008


The last few weeks, Jayce has been going to summer school. Actually, I wouldn't call it summer school--most people don't shell out $175 (with 50% discount) for their kid to go to summer school. It was a day camp type thing for kids that need a little more "challenge" in their school work. Jayce had to have written verification from his teacher that he was a TAG student and could handle the work.

His classes were his pick. He took 2 classes--a science class and a "Physics with K'NEX class". The second being his favorite. He learned how to build bridges, towers, cars and how changing even one tiny piece can affect the performance of your project. At least that's what he was supposed to learn.

Today was his last day and they had a "Parent Day" where we could go and collect his work and see all that he built. We had told Jayce at the beginning of the sessions that he would NOT be the smartest one in the class, unlike normal school. And we were right. You should have seen these projects these 3rd, 4th graders built! Amazing! You could see all the work that went into them and as we walked over to Jayce's stuff, we could hear the kids explaining to their parents why they built them the way they did and what they learned. Then we saw Jayce's stuff.

Now, we have never purposefully compared our kids to any other kids, in a negative way. But it was hard not to today. His things were sadly, lacking. When we asked if he followed along in class and did the assignments, he said he had but it was more fun to try and build a car, which was not part of the class and therefore we didn't get to see that.
I walked out of there disappointed in him, not that what he did was "bad" but that he didn't try to follow the teacher's suggestions. I KNOW he could have done what the other kids did, I KNOW he could have built an elaborate tower with swings and flashing lights. But was I disappointed because he missed out on a great opportunity to learn something or was I disappointed because from the outside, he looked different?

Our pastor said once to not tell your kids "I am disappointed in you" but tell them "You broke a rule" or "That's not allowed" etc. His reasoning is our children can't help how WE FEEL about them, they can only control what THEY DO. And that makes sense.

I came so close today to telling Jayce I was disappointed but I held my tongue.

Tonight, as I was talking to him at bed time, he said that maybe next year, he'll take that class again and maybe then he'll be smart enough to build like the other kids.
So, here I was disappointed that he didn't live up to MY expectations and he was beating himself up these last 3 wks, and convinced himself he couldn't do what those other kids were doing.
I was so glad I didn't go with my first reaction, seeing his projects in that classroom. I don't want to be the one to crush him and make him feel bad about himself. What kind of mom would I be.

He did say he had a ton of fun in this summer program and he wants to do it again next year. Which, at 9 yrs. old, isn't that the point?

Plus, now that I think about it--what if he had asked me to help him build one of those elaborate thingys? I would have been in deep trouble!! I don't think they make towers one big, long piece (like Jarrett and Jeven's towers, where they just stack blocks and then Godzilla them). Nope, don't think that would have impressed anyone.