Thursday, August 14, 2008

A really great day...

Today is my birthday. I had a great day! J always wakes up first. I am sure we should get up on a schedule but since it is summer, we are just all sleeping in. Why not? So, J comes into our room and climbs into bed. This is our morning ritual. Every morning this is what is done. I love it! It is our snuggle time. The time we talk about all the things I missed while I was at work. The time he tells me what he dreamed about. Also even the time we tell each other silly stories.

So this morning J comes in with a sneaky grin on his face. (This usually isn't a good sign) He jumps into bed pushing me into the middle and says "Happy Birthday Momma!" My heart just melts. He then says, "I love you so much." So I get up to start the day when he brings me a piece of paper. It was a menu for breakfast. I thought Scott was still sleeping but apparently I live with TWO sneaky men.

So I sat on my bed with J and we picked out what to eat for breakfast. I was going to stay upstairs and wait for S to wake up but J wanted me to go downstairs with him. He wanted to be with me but also wanted to help Daddy cook breakfast. What can you do? So I just turned up the monitor downstairs. I am glad I came down though since S didn't wake up until we finished breakfast!

When I get downstairs my guys had flowers on the table and a wonderful card waiting for me with a present. My card was handmade (the absolute best kind) and on the back had my childrens trademark first signatures, the outline of their hands. Scott had remembered what I do for other peoples cards. J did sign his name though and drew me a beautiful picture on it.

Now my plan for the rest of the day, well before work at least, was to just clean up the garage. I know that doesn't sound very birthday-ish but I wanted to time to just sit down and go through the collection of things that Scott and I have. It is a lot of stuff. Stuff from college, high school and all of the kids lives.

J tells me as he is clearing the table, "I am going to help Daddy cook when all the people come today."

me: All the people?
J: For your birthday party momma!
me: oh.... (picks up the phone to call nana and Emily)

My mom, who is wonderful, gets some party hot dogs and cake. So we had a wonderful party with my favorite people. I did get to clean a little in the garage too!

Does life get any better than being surrounded by people who love you? I don't see how!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Children and Parental Responsibility...

"The lack of emotional security of our American young people is due, I believe, to their isolation from the larger family unit. No two people - no mere father and mother - as I have often said, are enough to provide emotional security for a child. He needs to feel himself one in a world of kinfolk, persons of variety in age and temperament, and yet allied to himself by an
indissoluble bond which he cannot break if he could, for nature has welded him into it before he was born."

~Pearl S. Buck

I could not express my feelings better. Without the support of a large family unit, children will not grow to be successful members of our society. Many people believe that if you submerge your child in the right school or church that, in itself, will shape your child. I believe that the right school and church will only help what you the parent are willing to teach your child.

You are your child's first teacher.

That statement should be presented on a card after delivery. I have certain pet peeves, which I will blog about later, but parents who do not teach there children is right up top. I hope that Scott and I have prepared ourselves to not only love our children but to teach them. I want to prepare them for the world that they are going to experience. Not the ideal world that I hope they could experience. I do not want to shield them in a unrealistic view of society.

Should every child get a trophy at sporting events? No. Every child should know that they did a great job just playing but should not get a trophy. That is for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. Yes, it will hurt their feelings. Yes, it will require explaining and discussion. But no, just because little Johnny Apple played doesn't mean he deserves a trophy.

I think this is where many young Americans go wrong today. Many of us think we deserve what are parents have NOW. That is just plain nuts. It reminds me of an episode of the Cosby show. Vanessa gets in a situation with her friends because of a painting her mother bought. Vanessa then tells her parents that it is there fault she got into this fight. She said, "because y'all made me rich." And promptly Cliff says, "You are not rich. Your mother and I are rich, you have NOTHING." I totally agree.

J is four. He is still very young but he has an allowance. He does not have to do chores for this allowance. It is simply a gift from us to him. Now, he still is required to do chores but he doesn't get paid for them. He shouldn't get paid for them. He is a part of our family so he should pull his little weight. Yes, he should take his plate to the sink and run water over it. He should make his bed (well, as nice as he can) when he is ready to get up for the day. And yes, he should clean his playroom at night or before we leave somewhere. This is where he has trouble. His excuse is that it is so much to pick up. My response is that we can just put everything that is too hard to pick up away in boxes. If he can't pick up what he gets out then maybe he doesn't need it. Magically his room always gets clean. And he said he couldn't do it.

If you want children to keep their feet on the ground, put some responsibility on their shoulders. ~Abigail Van Buren

Many people say J has to much freedom. Well he has earned what he gets. He also gets things taken away when needs be. He can go into a store with his money and buy him a toy. Though he knows that it must be under $4 or he needs to wait until next week. Hard lessons, I know. But these lessons are better learned now than when he is 28!

Sorry, I know that this was kind of all over the place but had to get it off my mind.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Where did the US make a wrong turn?

Maybe it is just me or did the United States take some kind of wrong turn? I am beginning to think it was late 80's or early 90's. Then sometime in the very early 2000's we just slid down a slippery slope.

Where have morals gone? Recently, John Edwards admitted to having an affair. Not that much can get worse than that, he had an affair when his wife was battling terminal breast cancer! I love television and print news. I do not believe it wholeheartedly though. Why, you ask? No matter what you can not make news unbiased. It is almost impossible. Reporters will, without knowing, emphasize certain words or raise an eyebrow. These suttle interapersonal communcations can make influence a viewer. Today while watching "the news" (I will refrain from saying which one for obvious reasons) a reporter said that he had an extramartial affair. This reporter emphasized "while" and "terminal". To me it sounded like it was an excuse for his affair.

I am sorry but you don't slip and have an affair. Whoops, I just accidently lost my clothing and fell into bed with so and so. No, that just doesn't happen. Another excuse that really gets under my skin is "it was the heat of the moment"! Um, yea so in that "heat of the moment" you still would have to take your clothes off, did your brain stop working whilst you were unbuttoning?

When did this behavior become permissable? Do people really believe that Desperate Housewives is real life? And for the people who live like Desperate Housewives is real, is your life good? Do you care if you hurt people? John Edwards apparently doesn't. He stated in an interview that he and his wife were not getting a divorce and of course they would make it. Again, it is not a bill you forgot to pay. I understand that the Edwards' have faith but does that give him permission to be smug in answering questions to the nation he wanted to lead?