Friday, November 30, 2007

The Your Nighted States

Today, between the 1pm kindergarten pick up and the 2:45 end of the day, two of the girls and I stopped by the post office to mail a Christmas package to my parents. The postal worker kindly gave the girls the post office's coloring book. It is entitled "Greetings from America" and teaches U.S. historical and geographical facts. It's pretty cool and of course the girls are always delighted to get a special surprise that breaks up the monotony of running errands with mom.

On the way home, this was the comical conversation.

Bella talking to herself incoherently, "So people sleep at night and they live in the states."

I was figuring that she was making 4 year old reference self-talk to the fact that we live in The United States and we have our night while my sister-in-law's family has day in Korea. We have had that conversation with her a few times.

I keep on eavesdropping. Bella: "So it's you and states."

Sophia, "Yes Bella, it's The United States."

Bella, "Yeah, The Your Nighted States....we sleep at night."

When I commented that it was great that we live in The Your Nighted States we all had a good chuckle. The girls also loved being surprised by mom listening in during the mundane and long car rides home from school.

Then Abigail gets in the car and starts looking through her book and says, "Mom I can tell you the United States Presidents."

"Oh really, all of them?" "No, not all of them, just George Washington, John Adams and Abraham Lincoln; I am not sure of that guy in the middle with the glasses."

Sophia, "That's Teddy Bear Roosevelt." Abigail, "Oh yeah, and Teddy Roosevelt."

My response: "Abigail now we live in The Your Nighted States, didn't you know?"

P.S. It's not John Adams, that's Thomas Jefferson.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

What are you building?

The famiy room fairy and other forms of bribery have already been tried to help my three daughters learn their cleaning responsibility. I am always looking for new forms of bribery...any suggestions?

Last Saturday morning, the girls' toys were everywhere, as usual. LG and I actually tried to bribe the girls with bacon. Can you say, "Will work for pork?" LG gave the girls the chance to earn four pieces of bacon if they could get the room clean during the 20 minutes we were preparing breakfast. All three of our girls would eat a whole pound of bacon if you let them. Can you believe our bribery tactic only worked for Bella? LG, Bella, and I loved eating all that bacon. Abigail and Sophia only earned themselves one lousy piece. Man, we were so hopeful!

On another note, the following story was shared with me via e-mail. I think that this may make some mothers out there chuckle, as I am sure they can relate to me and my bacon bribery as well as this anonymous author's feelings about motherhood.

Unless you are a mother or plan on calling your mother and praising her name after you read this, you can stop reading now. And you mothers: get your tissues ready.

It started to happen gradually. One day I was walking my son Jake to school. I was holding his hand and we were about to cross the street when the crossing guard said to him, "Who is that with you, young fella?"

"Nobody," he shrugged. Nobody? The crossing guard and I laughed. My son is only 5, but as we crossed the street I thought, "Oh my goodness, nobody?"

I would walk into a room and no one would notice. I would say something to my family - like "Turn the TV down, please" - and nothing would happen. Nobody would get up, or even make a move for the remote. I would stand there for a minute, and then I would say again, a little louder, "Would someone turn the TV down?" Nothing.

Just the other night my husband and I were out at a party. We'd been there for about three hours and I was ready to leave. I noticed he was talking to a friend from work. So I walked over, and when there was a break in the conversation, I whispered, "I'm ready to go when you are." He just kept right on talking.

I'm invisible. It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?" Obviously not. No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner because no one can see me at all.

I'm invisible. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it?" I'm a satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney Channel?" I'm a car to order, "Right around 5:30, please."

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude - but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again.

She's going¸ she's going¸ she's gone! One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a banana clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, "I brought you this."

It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: "To Charlotte, with admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees."

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:
No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names.

These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished. They made great sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it."

And the workman replied, "Because God sees."

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, "I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over.

You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become."
At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride.

I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, "My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table." That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to add, "You're gonna love it there."

As women, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Christmas Ornaments

I just found these darling ornaments by linking this site from Rita's.

I love these great ornaments. They may really come in handy as replacements for Katie in New York, who put her Christmas tree up 2 weeks ago. And, she has two toddler sons. What was she thinking? I think that all of my girls are finally old enough to respect that Christmas ornaments break. Now, if I could just teach the cat to leave the tree alone, I may be motivated to put my tree up on Thanksgiving weekend like the rest of the country.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Gratitude

Thanks to Liam's mom for reading my blog! I don't always acknowledge those who come to my blog, especially if I think that they are just looking for readership. But, for some reason, after reading Gina's blog I think I like her. And even thought my craftiness can be quite said, I also liked the cute Thanksgiving craft that was posted on thewoodenporch, which I understood to also be Gina's. Here is the photo.

Here is a link that Gina put on one of her recent posts. I found it fascinating. It is about Ronald Reagan's visit to a church cannery in Ogden, UT. Wow, we belong to an awesome church. If everyone in this world were a member, it would be such a better place to live.

I have a lot to be thankful for today. And, I guess we will just call this my gratitude post. Everyone has to have one, right? Things to be grateful for right this minute: 1- I made a new blogger friend who also happens to be a stranger, for the first time. 2- I just read an article that reminded me that I belong to a church that is awesome and true. 3- I just had the sweetest phone call from a new member of our church who has overnight become a fast friend. 4- I also have been pondering all morning about our Family Home Evening last night. LG gave a lesson about gratitude that included this modern day scripture: (for those of you that are unfamiliar, the Doctrine and Covenants are recorded scriptural revelations given to the first Prophet of this dispensation, Joseph Smith.)

Doctrine and Covenants 78:19 And he who receiveth all things with athankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an bhundred fold, yea, more.

How cool is that scripture. Although, I am sure I have, I don't ever remember reading it before. What a promise. If we are truly grateful for what we have, the Lord will bless us with a hundred fold things of this earth (So, this isn't a blessing we have to wait for until the next life) He will bless us while we are on this earth.

So, I have made a promise to myself that I am going to try and write something comical in every post. That is the point of this blog: to make people laugh. This is going to be hard to do, but worth the challenge.

So, what do I have comical about gratitude? Well, last night at the end of our Family Home Evening lesson, (if you want to read more about Mormon's having Family Home Evening read this exceptional talk by a latter-day Apostle) we combined our activity and refreshments. I had a big bag of gummy bears and told the girls that if they would tell me things that they were grateful for, I would throw them a gummy bear. LG quickly advanced this game to everyone opening their mouths and me trying to accurately toss the bears directly in. Boys make everything so much more fun.

So, the funny part...In the middle of all of this fun, LG started to feel ignored as the girls were getting all the candy. He said, "Wow, that gummy bear was so good, I am SO grateful for it. I wonder if the Lord will bless me a hundred fold."

I replied, "Probably not. It doesn't work that way. If you were truly grateful for that one gummy bear, you wouldn't be wondering if the Lord would give you more because you would be happy with the one you just got." LG conceded that I was correct, but I still chucked a handful at him. His gratitude wasn't quite worth one hundred though.

Monday, November 19, 2007

The Southern Baptists

In no way do I want to be disrespectful to my friends of other faiths, but I just gotta blog about something kind of funny. I love the Southern Christian people. We are surrounded by people who are not afraid to talk about their faith and this is not only refreshing but faith promoting. The picture above is the Historical First Baptist church in downtown Knoxville.

But, on with my entry. (Please don't be offended anyone) In the South, we are known as the Bible Belt. I never quite understood what that meant until I moved here 4 years ago. We literally have a different church on every corner. (as opposed to different LDS ward buildings in Utah) On some intersections you can even find two different Baptist churches across from one another. I have no idea how many different sects that there are in the Baptist church. Here are the ones that I have learned of: Southern Baptist, Primitive Baptist, Calvary Baptist, First Baptist. Some of these could just be names of congregations, I'm not totally sure. The point being that we are the Bible Belt because people around here really read their Bibles.

From what I have learned about Baptists, the most important thing one can do is be "saved". Besides that, it doesn't really matter what you believe and as a Baptist you can go to whichever church you want, picking a preacher that you like. Agreeing with all the doctrines preached is a huge bonus, and the main reason that the number of congregations are always growing. Being a Mormon, however, is not acceptable to people of the Baptist faith. The Baptists don't consider us to be Christian because for some reason their preachers have taught them that our being saved is not the same as theirs. I still have yet to figure that out.

Here is an interesting website I came across tonight: Knoxkoupons. I can make no sense whatsoever as to why there is a website that totally focuses on church congregations with the title having the word Koupon in it. I am also unsure as to whether or not I should be saddened by the fact that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is not on the list.

So, onto the funny part. As I have mentioned before, we have a funny way of talking here in the South. I never really thought about the origin of our vocabulary words until I was recently enlightened in Sunday School. Here are two seperate Bible references that we studied within the past couple of weeks.

Rom. 8: 18
18 For I reckon that the asufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the bglory which shall be revealed cin us.

Rom. 12: 14
14 Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.

So, I got an answer to a question that I had never bothered to ask just by going to Sunday School. (this could be some kind of motivational "attend your meetings" speech) The question: Where do Southerners get their vocabulary? The origin: The Holy Bible. Two Southern phrases from tbe Book or Romans: "I reckon" & "Bless his heart".

Our family especially likes the Southern phrase, "bless his heart." You can almost get away with murder, as long as you are willing to say "bless his heart" after you kill someone. For instance, "Oh honey, you are getting so fat, bless your heart."

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Hubby's Humor

Those of you that have been loyal readers from the beginning know that this blog was a gift to me from my husband for Valentine's Day a few years back. It really has been one of the best gifts he has ever given me. One, I love to write and I use this blog all the time. (except for the year 2006) ;) Two, this blog is a great therapeutic tool! And three, LG was able to use his skills in Computer Science (which he will adamantly oppose, saying that it doesn't take computer skills to set up a blog) to gift this to me. Of course there is no better gift than giving of yourself.

Here is a picture of LG. He is the love of my life, which none of you care about, but look at his cuteness. Just looking at a picture of him makes me smile. LG was the one who thought of the name for my blog. "I'm so funny" came from my oft heard self description of my sad sense of humor. (If I was really funny, I wouldn't have to declare it to everyone after telling a joke, right?) The other source of this blog's name is from the dialogue that often takes place between LG and me. Whenever one of us gets a good joke in, we are both known to profess to each other, "I'm so funny." Usually this will turn into a little bit of fun bantering between us; of course he always lets me have the last, "No, I'm so funny." This is very kind of him considering that he really does have the quicker wit.

We also like to sometimes exclaim to one another, "You're so funny!" "You're so funny" can be said for two reasons. These reasons have never been officially discussed, but have just evolved over time and are simply understood by just the two of us. The first kind of "You're so funny" is said in a de·rog·a·to·ry fashion. The meaning of the expression really being, "you're NOT so funny." The second instance where we will say "you're so funny" is always in only the finest complimentary way. The trick with the "you're so funny" expression is that the giver of the words has to deliver the phrase in a monotone fashion. The whole fun with saying, "you're so funny" is making the recipient of the phrase try to figure out if the humor is being described as 1- that was bad! or 2- that was really good!

Last night LG gave me a point in case example of his quick wit. I just had to share. We were in bed having our usual late night chat. Directly after our nightly prayers, and right before falling to sleep sometimes we will engage in (NO, not that) conversation. We go over the happenings of the day, talk about our next day's plans, and sometimes, rarely, LG will even venture into the world of sharing his true deep down feelings. LG was a little down last night. He said he was having self confidence issues. (which I am sure he will be happy that I have told the whole world today on my blog - and which will also mean that it will be a while before he dares share any more personal feelings) But this story is worth it and I HAVE to give you the background information or it just won't be the same. I will conveniently leave out some other details, only because LG has threatened me. :)

Our conversation progressed last night by me pressing for the exact reasons he was down on himself. He told me a few things he felt and then I got the chance to dispel his negative thoughts. By the time I got done, I thought, "I should tell him some others things he is good at." LG's complete ignorance of my weak compliments led me to start using the usual backup stupid complimentary phrases, the last being, "And, you know that I think that you have the perfect amount of chest hair."

You have to understand that this last compliment was given with a sweet kiss attached. And, what was his reply? "So do you." How does he expect my pep talk to lead to any form of intimacy when all I could do was just crack up? In between my fits of laughter I got the last word of course, "You're so funny!" And this time I am sure that my tone gave away the meaning of the phrase.

Last night, LG may have won the I'msofunny game. Happily in this case, I declare the war as never being over. Last night, LG was truly #2 "you really are so funny" and not #1, "you're not so funny." with those three quick words, "So do you."

Maybe some of those writers in Hollywood could step aside and give LG a shot. I tell you what, "So do you", blurted out in .001 seconds?! I would almost be proud of his joke if it wasn't in reference to me having hair on my chest (which just in case you are wondering, I don't) If I did, that wouldn't be so funny, now would it?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Did you know?

According to this picture, I am the Appalachian trail. I wonder if my daughters know. They seem pretty oblivious here.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

This is the way we do it in the south

So, I am addicted to reading the comments on my blog. The other day I was frustrated because none of my blogging friends have updated and no one is giving me the desperate attention I shouldn't need. LG informed me that I have fallen away from what I do best, telling funny stories. "No one wants to read about your kids", he said. He then informed me that I ruined my reading audience because back in the beginning I was getting at least 20 hits a day, and that now, if we could remember how to get to my tracker it would be just the same 5 friends. Oh well, I guess I'll never be famous. Isn't this blogging thing so egotistical? Who really wants to read anything that I have to write about except other bloggers who are just as desperate as I am for some comment action. I mean really, be honest with yourself, don't we all blog for the comments?

So, on with my desperate attempt to entertain my readers with a story that doesn't have to do with my children. Which may backfire because all of my readers may be in the future when my children get older and decide to do genealogy by reading their mom's blog. And, then they will just want to hear their stories, and instead they will find this one. Man, us mom's, sometimes we just can't win.

A few years ago, when I was very new to the South and was trying to learn all the new vocabulary I had an interesting experience at WalMart. Of course it happened at Wal-Mart because Tennesseans don't shop anywhere else. This story has to do with the picture above in a round about way...see if you can figure it out. I got the picture above from, I know you won't believe it, the international towing museum, which is amazingly located down south a bit in Chattanooga,TN.

I was checking out in the regular line, as opposed to the infamous Self Check Out, which is where I normally check out. I may have shied away from Self Check Out a little after the above mentioned linked experience, and come to think of it, it was shortly after the funny check out story and I was checking out late at night (which explains why I wasn't in my favorite closed self check out line.)

So, this night, a gruff looking man pulled his buggy up behind mine (we use the word buggy instead of shopping cart in the South) On a side note, I learned very quickly to holler (not yell) at my children to get in the buggy. No onlookers understood my discipline when I told my kids to get in the cart. I like to think of my audience you know. So, on with the story, as the cashier checked out my mountains of groceries, this gruff man asked her politely if she would keep an eye on his buggy. He explained, "I'm a wrecker driver and I just got a page." He took off and the cashier pulled his buggy of merchandise out of the line.

I was perplexed. "What's a wrecker driver?", I asked the cashier, with as close as I can get to a Southern accent. I knew I would sound as if I was from a foreign country. The cashier looked at me as if I was from a foreign country. I explained further, "If you can't tell already, I am not from the South." (not hard for most people to notice since calling a shopping cart a buggy is as close as I get to a southern drawl) "So what that you aren't from the south, are you stupid?", her glare seemed to scream at me. So, I asked again,"What's a wrecker driver, I really don't know what that is."

As she must have noticed the tear forming in my eye from frustration, she answered nonchalantly, "It's a person who drives a wrecker, honey."

I probably should have stopped there, but just couldn't end the insanity until I got my answers. "What's a wrecker?"

"Well, you know, honey, it's the thing that people call when they've been in an accident or their car broke down."

"Ohhhhhhhhh, a TOW TRUCK!", I responded feeling so enlightened.

She then replied, "What's a tow truck?" I saved her the humiliation and explained, "It's what the rest of this country calls a wrecker driver."

Well surely this WalMart cashier must have been the more misinformed person because even the best of the best wrecker drivers call their museum the "International TOWING Museum", not the "International Wrecker Museum." I took pride in myself tonight for knowing more than the old WalMart checker about wreckers. Surely she doesn't know about the wrecker museum or this website that I found tonight while searching for a picture of a wrecker to post.

Do you think I can pass as a true Southerner yet? I guess I'll have the ultimate test when my car breaks down. If I look under the T's in the yellow book before I look up the W's than I will have failed. But, if I go straight to the "wrecker section", well, then let's just say that then y'all will know that I am at least one southern vocabulary word closer.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

California Fires

So, LG and I took the girls for a getaway to the Atlanta temple yesterday. It's a three hour drive each way. We left very early to get a jump start and it was a typical Southern Fall foggy morning.

Between navigating for LG, taking care of the kids in the car, and making the 7 soccer party calls from my cell phone, my mind wandered from the road. I looked up to see a wall of "smoke". I exclaimed, "Honey, there's a fire, slow down."

Yes, I'm a Californian and grew up among frequent fires. LG turned to me and said, "Go home hippie."

He didn't really say that but that's not the point. Our conversation just now went something like this.

Me: "Well, aren't fog and smoke from the same element anyway?"

"No, Fog is water; smoke is pollution, you hippie."

"What are you talking about you redneck, smoke is not pollution."

Friday, November 02, 2007

The Master of Folk Art

Here is my birthday present from LG. I saw these kitchen canisters on the 75% off shelf at Cracker Barrel last week. I slyly told LG to tell his mom to get them for me for Christmas. Lo and behold, I didn't have to wait that long. THANK YOU LG. You mastered my folk art wish list today. I LOVE IT!

I was very happy this morning with my surprise. I thought that you were going to get me that body spray I have been asking for from Target, but these canisters were way better. Good sneakiness honey. Now you can tell your mom to get me that Duchess body spray that I want for Christmas instead. (According to this link I shouldn't waste my time, but as you all know you can't trust everything you read on the Internet, and I love the scent of this stuff - The blogger also explains why I can't find the item online to link it) I guess you won't have to tell your mom LG because she can just read my blog. he he I love this "wish list" feature of the blog!

I love the idea of these canisters being in my kitchen (the place I spend the most time besides my bed). They will act as a constant reminder of the three greatest blessings in my life: Faith, Family and Freedom. How beautiful. I also love the style of these canisters. I am totally into folk art. Someday I am going to buy myself some authentic art. Or I can wait for LG to do it now that I've mentioned it on my blog wish list.

I also love the memory of being at the Cracker Barrel in Morristown when I found these. We had met my in-laws there halfway. We do this often when swapping off the kids for time at grammy's and papa's. It was Sophia's birthday and we had already celebrated her special day on Sunday. She had spent two days with Duane and Faye and we were meeting to have a birthday dinner and exchange the kids back. Duane and Faye had taken them for a visit so that LG and I could discuss our future plans. I was distraught because with all the bar news ongoings I had forgotten to bring her a little something special for her actual birthday.

LG quickly comforted me with, "Don't worry, all the girls love to shop at Cracker Barrel, I will just give her some money." After dinner we all looked and looked for that perfect birthday toy. Everyone took turns suggesting to Sophia what would be in her budget of $10. Sophia only wanted the higher priced items. Abigail took Sophia over to the clearance side of the store and they came running back, "Mom, mom, come and see what Sophia wants to get." Abigail informed me that it would cost under $5. (which is pretty amazing considering she is in 3rd grade and did the 75% off math for the original $10 item)

The item was a cute princess tiara wall hanging with shelf for the included mirror, brush, powder and the rankest smelling perfume ever. Of course I was sick for the next three days as all the girls sprayed it all over the house until I finally decided to hide it. Sophia was thrilled! She had found something nice for 75% off. These girls have been trained to find a deal! It was a proud parenting moment.

Not quite as proud as a few days ago when we were at Wal-Mart in the candy aisle. I was talking to LG on my cell phone and looking for single packaged peanuts as the girls ran ahead to pick out some candy. Bella came running back and questioned,"Mom, what is our budget for candy?" LG, with a chuckle, said in my other ear,"Did she just ask you what her candy budget is?"

Here is a photo of Bella playing the the Styrofoam from my birthday package. Bella has been begging to get on the computer and play Arthur as I have been typing this entry. I told her to hang on a few minutes longer so that I could type a story about her. She asked me to read it to her. She wants me to make the correction that it was Abigail that sent her back down the long Wal-Mart aisle to "ask mom what our candy budget is"

The Gold

"Vote for Abigail and she'll give you some GOLD!" Abigail came up with her very own slogan so that she could run for Student Council. And, here is a poster made from her very own hands. I must say that LG sure did give our children a nice last name. When I ran for student council all I could come up with for slogans were "Vote for Alice in Lancerland" and "Where there's A. Wills, there's a way." The latter was stolen by my older brother, see, his name starts with an A also.

Well, Abigail's kindergarten teacher surely led Abigail onto the right path with all that Irish talk. You can't see it, but in her top right corner, Abigail drew a pretty detailed leprechaun.

I guess I have come full circle in my life. I thought that the world was over when I didn't win my campaign for Student Body President at good old CHS, but when Abigail showed interest in 3rd grade Student Council, I was thrilled. I don't necesarily want her to win because I know it may go to her head. I also don't want her to lose because of course I never want her to be sad. I just want her to experience life to the fullest and everyone has to run for Student Council at least once. And, Abigail running as young as she is has been really nice because you should hear all the responsibility talks we have been able to have with her.

The cutest was to hear from LG (who never ran for student council in his life), but amazingly understands the meaning of it, "Abigail, do you know what the kids in your class deserve from you if your elected?" Abigail, "I don't know." LG, "Well, you are going to have to be extra responsible and be nice to everyone and listen to them and represent all the people in your class. You will have a big responsibility and you will need to live up to it."

I imagined the entertaining end of the story with LeGrand saying, "Abigail you never want to dissapoint your constintuents." Abigail, "What's a constinuant?"

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Monkey Hugs

When Abigail was about three, she quit wanting to go through the trouble to give us nighttime hugs and kisses. I don't know how it started, but Abigail came up with a new tradition: Monkey Hugs.(It probably started when Abigail was monkeying around - hence the term Monkey Hugs)

So, every night for about four years, the girls would give us each a monkey hug by jumping on our backs. We really liked this tradition. It made an easy transition from nightly prayers to bedtime bliss. The ritual started on our knees by the kids' beds, and advanced to them on our backs, and ended at us dumping them off our back into their bed.

For some reason the tradition died down. Probably when we started having family prayer in the family room. But tonight, after our prayer, Abigail decided to jump on her dad's back. Then the Sophia and Bella joinedin. I grabbed the camera off the shelf. I had to hurry because what you can't see in this picture is LG begging like a baby girl for them to get off his back....those new wood floors were way too hard on the knees.

The Family Room Fairy Gets Lucky

So the family room fairy saga continues. The family room fairy only motivated the kids to clean twice.

So tonight, I got a really great idea. It was time to go to bed and the family room was a mess. In the ideal world the kids would keep the room clean throughout the day. You know it's not a hard concept: get one toy out, put it away before you get another on out. Well, I guess that this concept is way too advanced for any child under eight. I have not been able to get any of my three trained in this theory. Although, if I had to choose one child who was the best at keeping things clean it would have to be Bella. She definitely seems to get the most satisfaction from cleaning.

Anyhow, on with my story. So, I can't get the kids to keep the room clean throughout the day and I refuse to try and get them to cooperate with me for longer than one hour a day...way too frustrating for me, not to mention the three little pigs. "This little piggie dumped out all the paints, this little piggie smashed cereal into the rug......etc, etc, all the way home."

Today the mess was really bad since the girls were home sick and we had Halloween yesterday and they had free reign on the Halloween candy all day. And if you were wondering, the sick was just diarrhea and so I didn't think that it warranted keeping their candy from them. Can you say, "candy wrappers everywhere."

So, tonight, my big idea...

Me: "Girls, I think that if you don't clean that mess up in the next ten minutes I will give some of your Halloween candy to the Family Room Fairy."

This great idea evolved. For every minute I had to spend cleaning after they utilized their ten minutes, the family room fairy would get 10 pieces of their candy.

So, as you can see from the pic. the family room fairy will be surprised tonight with 30 pieces of candy. I really spent 10 minutes cleaning. Look at the trash that I gathered, not to mention the rest of the things I had to clean. And, a lot of the trash was sucker sticks that I had to pry from the carpet.

I will kindly represent the children tonight and beg of the fairy to allow the children to earn their candy back tomorrow night...ingenious, huh?

It's too bad that Abigail has discovered my blog and loves to read it. Tonight she got a real chuckle with the fact that she knows that I am the family room fairy. I told her that she shouldn't be laughing because I can eat her candy a lot faster.

Happy Halloween Candy eating!