Wednesday, August 27, 2008

One more project

In the wake of the incredibly successful "Making-a-book-of-our-day-at-the-park" project, I'm now entering production on "making-a-binder-of-the-first-year-at-school." It's kind of cool - I have all of his daily sheets, most of which have pretty detailed descriptions of what he did that day and what types of things he was learning. They're organized by date, and I've got all of the pictures that they sent home, too. I'm putting it together in a book that I'll be able to use in lieu of any type of baby book I might have thought I would've made in the recent past (or near future). How could a woman who still hasn't finished her brother's wedding quilt in the month of his fifth anniversary (it's together, just not quilted) think she would pull this off? One can only imagine!

The transition to the new room has been a little bumpy, but made better by the fact that all of his friends have moved up with him. He's especially close to Nora right now, so her dimples and hugs are really helping him along! He's been a little clingy when I try to drop him off, but if I hide in the hallway just past their door (so I can hear him but he doesn't know I'm there), I know that he finishes the crying within seconds, just like they said he would. We've had to sign a couple of incident reports for his biting (ugh!), but I believe that's slowing down now to only when he's very, very excited or very, very tired. (please?) The teachers really are wonderful, and are the kind of women who, in the midst of complete chaos (their oldest isn't even two) are laughing and having fun with the children, and still teaching them things. Bless them all!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

new room

Aidan's in a new room at school. The good news is that all of his friends moved up with him; the bad news is that his teachers didn't. I'm sure the teachers in the new room are just wonderful - they seem so, patient and fun-loving all. They're just not Kathy and Keely (especially Kathy & Keely), who loved him from when he was just tiny and know him so well.

We're one week in, and I've signed two incident reports for Aidan's biting other children. Ugh. I have a bruise on my arm for same; we're working on it. He does it as much when he's excited as when mad, and they assure me it's developmental and that he'll get through it. My hubby says we should invest in one of those Hannibal Lecter masks so that he can't bite anymore. I'm tempted.

He's having a little trouble with being dropped off which is unusual for him, but usually when he sees that his friends are there, he's just fine. This morning beautiful Nora with her dimples and pigtail on top of her head reached out to him as he struggled; I love her. They have news toys out every week, a schedule (like herding cats, as far as I can tell), and less stringent rules (to the extent that tiny people can have fewer rules). They go to the muscle room and the playground more, and they still get to do cool art projects. My boy loves to sing and dance, and they do lots of that, too. It's going to be alright, I just know it. I still miss Kathy, Keely, Sarah, Robin and Stacey though.

another hats off -

It's the Olympics, and I love the Olympics. I get goosebumps for people I don't know who are competing in sports I have no other interest in. I tear up when they win. What an amazing accomplishment - a dream realized.

I very recently met a Canadian hockey player who went to the Olympics at Lake Placid, the year the US beat Russia for gold. I remember that game, jumping up and down in the living room of our house in Chicago. Anyway, Canada missed the medals round by a tiebreaker, apparently. I talked to him about his experience--he was 18 and travelled with that team for a little over a year. Amazing tales of Herb Brooks (Canada trained with the US in Colorado for awhile, I now know). Amazing tales of putting on the jersey of your country and skating out, getting chills (at the time, and me hearing about it now). He says that no matter how big, mean and/or manly you are, you cry when you stand on the podium and hear the national anthem of your country. I believe him - heck, I cry watching at home. My hat's off to him and all the other athlets who are so driven by a vision to become the best in the world.

Monday, August 18, 2008

perhaps if I ply you with adorable photos,

you won't notice that I haven't written lately. Overcome with the boy's cuteness, you'll smile happily the rest of the day. That's what happened to me when I made the latest pic my background, anyway.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Isn't that the guy who disintegrated his pants?

I sure didn't expect to hear that sentence in everyday conversation.

My sister is about ten years younger than me. It's pretty amazing what things you remember about a point in time based on your perspective. Saturday I was at her first bridal shower (it's true - I'm not actually 22, though I look it), and I told an embarrassing story about myself. No - that's a whole different story about walking through a warehouse store pushing one cart and pulling another, both full of about 15 cases of beer and running into a friend from high school who I hadn't seen in years (funny guy - he looked at me and said, "Thirsty?"). You see, the beer was for a work function I was coordinating, and - well, anyway, I was telling this story when my sister piped up and said, "Isn't that the guy who disintegrated his pants?" I had no idea what she was talking about.

Turns out that she remembered a story I'd told her when I got home from school one day. It's from Chemistry, which would've been 10th grade - I'm 16, so she's 6. Apparently this stands out in a six-year-old memory: Kent (ha! used his real name, just in case my sis remembered the right person) was in chemistry with me. Our class was experimenting with some chemicals one day, and he jumped up to sit on the counter during the lab. He sat on the chemicals (whatever they might have been), and disintegrated part of his pants. I bet that really was funny - too bad I don't remember it even a little bit!

Monday, August 4, 2008

now you know the truth - i can't really keep up

This probably explains why I was so happy to be a little ahead of the curve last week (and I'm still happy about that.)

My little family is in an even littler house, it seems sometimes. Dear Hubby and I are dreaming of space, more space. I'm sure Aidan is too, after spending time in some of our friends' play rooms, but he's not complaining. To be fair to Aidan, he can't because he doesn't have the words (though yesterday he did pick up a very clear Mommy), and to be fair to the house, it's the house I bought single, and it was plenty big for just me.

We're thinking that in the spring or summer next year, we might be ready to move. Now I find myself wanting to surf real estate sites, telling myself it's just to see what's out there and available, but knowing that I'm bound to get a crush on at least one house I view. Yesterday this number was closer to twenty, but you get the idea.

Our lives are crazy busy, even by my standards, which is saying something. Something has to go, but instead we're adding to it getting a house ready to sell. The good part of this is that it really needs it - we never really decided what to keep and/or get rid of when Hubby moved in. I wouldn't normally tell you this, but I feel kind of safe because I know you can't see them: my garage and basement are ridiculously full of junk (mostly junk). We can park our cars in the garage, but barely so. Also, the office is suffering from becoming the office/spare room when we made the nursery. What I'm saying here is that the clutter's taking over. It's taking over everything.

And the yard. If the house is cluttered, the flower beds in the back are wrecked. The yard's pretty small, and you wouldn't think that much could go wrong, but I promise you that it can. My folks came over for a day and helped us completely re-do the front yard (thankfully); now the front yard looks wonderful! The back, though - ugh. I have an entire flower bed, say, 8 x 15 or so, entirely made up of weeds. Some of those weeds are taller than me. Not just weeds, either - weeds and grass which is now thigh-high. It's horrid.* Sure, we mow, but not in the flower beds. As a cherry on top of this extravaganza, a viney-sort of weed is taking over what's left of my lawn. Somehow this has to be presentable enough first for me be able even to glance at it and not wince, and second to make a buyer feel that it must be his/hers/theirs.

So, we now have good reason, not that we didn't already, to clean out EVERYTHING. In our "spare" time, of course. We're trying to accomplish at least one thing a week, so when it gets a little overwhelming, we focus on whatever we're trying to accomplish that week. Truly, I am happy about whatever baby step we make. This weekend, it was new screen doors in front and back. They look great.

*horrid if you live in the house and see it enough to make you crazy. We're not receiving notices from the city, but likely only because those who might complain (and many of them reside in my neighborhood) cannot see the back yard.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Basking isn't just for sunshine

So, I'm feeling pretty big right now. I'm caught up at work and I did a little project for home. Is my home clean? Nope. Is it less cluttered? Nope. However, I did a project for fun, and that's making me feel pretty big.

Aidan and I went to the park on Sunday - we rode our bike (with cart) in the morning and had the place all to ourselves for a couple of hours. We climbed, climbed and climbed some more. We slided (slid?), we played on the swings (swang?) - we had a grand old time. Due to a fancy new habit in which I carry my camera in my (now mom-sized) purse, it occurred to me that this would be a wonderful opportunity for photos. I'm not going to lie - I took 130. We snacked, we rode home, with the wind blowing through our hair and only one of us arriving awake (luckily, me, the driver).

As Aidan napped, I went online and made a book of our morning. I always mean to make books of my photos, but I don't ever have time. I have grand plans of doing "this is my first year" or "times with Grandma & Grandpa" as gifts, but those are pretty large undertakings. Putting together a book made of a sample of 130 photos - that's manageable in one naptime. I sat, I designed, I chose the very cutest pictures - no easy feat given a smorgasboard of cute pics, I might add - I made a book. Already, it's arriving today! I'm excited like Birthday Excited to get it. AND I'm feeling big.

I'm a mom who has it together. I plan on the weekend for a potluck on a Thursday night (actually done this week); I have a present ready for the expectant book club mom before the day of bookclub (actually done last week); I use a slow cooker occasionally having dinner ready when we get home from work; I do fun projects in my "spare" time. Honestly, I rarely am this good. Even a little bit of "together" makes me feel big, but that doesn't mean I won't bask in it for a brief moment. I'm basking.