it's MARCH! i've never been so happy to flip the page of my calendar...everyday feels a wee bit longer....we are feeling the longer days.....little by little....o.k., so we've had a few mini-blizzards in the past week. i'm outside in all weather walking the dogs anyway.......
we still have some more skiing to do....i'm still loving our cozy fires in our fireplace....with our wood that biff chops. last week, since biff hurt/sprained/broke? his hand/wrist?, he had t.j. outside teaching him how to chop wood.
it seemed like i should be inside doing some "chores" with grace....somehow, having biff teach all there is to know about wielding an axe seemed to feel like pioneers.....hardly!! we love doing alot outdoors and indoors....it's just the finishing that gets a little tricky. our heart is in the projects that we get moving on.....and it's the details at the end that get us tripped up!
the funny thing is, we're happy! absolutely happy and biff still makes me laugh when we get into bed each night. i even make our teens a little crazy because he makes me laugh so hard. he's not trying to be funny....it's just that his sense of humor seems to tickle me more than anyone i know....and we both love to make the other laugh....
even in the midst of chaos, we seem to do best with humor. i still remember when we had no sleep with itty bitty little babies....crying....not sleeping....and biff and i not knowing what to do or how to do it....we would snip and snap at each other! we would realize it and that would lighten us up!
we're in that same stage right now....an itty bitty bit.....only now we're ion the big leagues...or the bigger leagues....with our teenagers...grace,15 and t.j., 13 1/2!
when our sweet little cherubs do what we ask and cooperate like trained monkeys, everything seems to run smoothly! only one problem, as great as they are...we haven't trained our monkeys well enough!
we do our best with our 2 little monkeys jumpin on the bed! only jumping on the bed isn't the problem.....making the bed is! it's the little things...remember my trickle down theory....dishes not taken out of the dishwasher....they pile up in the sink...when they pile up in the sink, i can't wash the floor because i like to use the sink with my clean water....i can't wash the floor, so something else and something else and something else goes inside out and upside down and somewhere along the line, it all hits the fan! and don't get me started on when the bathroom toilet backs up.......
if you give a mouse a cookie.....in our case if you give a monkey a banana. grace and t.j. have always been so good with getting things done...they have always been eager to help biff and i....they have been helpful even to older relatives....they have compassion, empathy, work hard in school, have a way with making friends...and a variety....i love that. they have so many awesome qualities....
we tell them. we tell them. we tell them how many good qualities that they have. we look to parent positively! we do!
until we don't! it seems that our wonderful dancing monkeys, who don't always perform for friends and family like other peoples children.....you know the ones...the puppet children!! they sing, they dance, they play the harp wearing velvet dresses and petticoats.......the boys always seem to wear bow ties....the trained monkeys and the puppet children..............we have really good kids. we love them more than pancakes! and syrup! we just sometimes don't demand enough as parents.
and that's our kids...good kids. until they just don't seem good...to us! it happens. if my mom was still alive, she'd say,"oh, don't be silly! look at all they do....and they're so adorable....you couldn't ask for more!!"
well, it depends on your perspective. my mom forgets. and then again, sometimes she didn't demand enough of me! i tried though. i was home sick in 5th grade...one whole week....my mom was off working at her saks fifth avenue, quite the executive she was!.....and i was home...with nothing to do after a few days....i was so proud...i spent forever cleaning her desk! i tried to help my busy mom. i thought i could make her desk pretty....i thought i'd make her so happy!
until she came home from work! she shrieked! oops....bank statements, bills, pictures, newspapers, calendars, check books......well, let's just say i still have some issues with paperwork! oh! don't think for a minute that those are my only issues....i have lots more where those came from!
apparently, biff and i have shared some of our greatest issues with our lovely little monkeys....like sometimes. oh! never mind, i'll tell you later...in awhile...sometime...in the next blog....tomorrow morning with coffee.......oh, never mind i'm trying to change. still. always. there is hope. maybe. eventually. tomorrow. what was i saying? oh yes...we both tend to kind of procrastinate! and we also get distracted lots of the time.
so, what are we to do. we sent our little lovin' monkeys to montessori school....shouldn't they have trained our little monkeys? just kidding. wouldn't it be great if you could send them away for a quick pre school outing and have them come back perfect little monkeys!
well, instead, these innocent children are victims of 2 third children...one younger twin in the middle of the family and me, the youngest after two older brothers...way older! they have no hope! we try. we are just too fun to be parents! not that our kids think we're fun...one bit! we do our best!
and they do their best...until they try to slide by under the radar! that's when we start to not be so fun. especially, as we're beginning these teenage years....i find myself thinking...how will we be sending these sweet little people born to us....into the great big world!
it's something i'm proud of when i see t.j. make pancakes for the family....or flip burgers on the grill. i feel like it's my duty to send my little man into the world to take care of himself...but more important than that....i'm creating someone's husband! he needs to be o.k. with switching a load of laundry...or 5!
grace can be a powerhouse when she's motivated! she cleans her room after her hurricane like waves of clothing go tumbling to the floor....all we need is a sleepover or company for motivating her and voila'...she's martha stewart! and she's awesome in the kitchen...maybe to cover some of the slack for me....since i've had my highs and low in the kitchen! once i'm on a roll, there's no stopping me. biff supports me and enables me! he cooks too...alot! biff likes to say (he is so sweet and patient!)....you're good at contruction with food...you really know how to pick some delicious foods....sometimes made in the store....and put a few great dishes together.............and voila'! a feast! it's a gift! a talent. plus...i make it look pretty...tablecloth, napkins, flowers, pretty dishes....i think i learned that from my saks 5th mother! make it look pretty and alot will be forgiven!
that's kind of how i feel about lipstick....i may not have it all together..everyday of the week, all day long.....but, wow! if i have lipstick on...life is good! actually, if it's the right color, life is great!
i seem to have gotten distracted again! but, then again....i'm writing my blog because i didn't have to cook dinner tonight. our little monkeys had a friend over today...our old neighbor...jane and i went for a walk in the woods with the dogs and when we got back....the kids were waiting at the front door..laughing and dressed in snuggies and ski helmets and goggles and guitars (i've never used a guitar as an accessory..that's a new look)....waiting for the pizza delivery man! our little monkey children, looking for a fun time, ordered pizza at 4:30 in the afternoon! they were dressed like nutcakes to meet the pizza man! and they had their own money to buy the pizza and tip the pizza man!
so our monkey children get some of their little ways from biff and i! we know that! they also got some of our better qualities....they like to take road trips, they both like school and do well(although they wouldn't like us to believe that!) they like to meet new people, they adapt pretty well wherever we take them, they enjoy their friends, they have very good friends, they both enjoy a sense of humor! not ours all of the time! they both are fun....they're funny! they have style! they are pretty sporty. they love the beach! that's when they perform!
o.k....i'll stop there! really those are the things that matter to us! actually, i could probably have dealt with it if they only had one of those ways from biff and i......that would be simple! they love the beach!
lord knows, that's where we have spent some of our greatest days together as a family! we love the beach with friends, with family, with just us.....anywhere, anytime.
so, who cares if we're not perfect.....and who cares if our monkeys aren't trained as well as we would lie them to be! they're not out of the zoo yet. we're doing the best we can. we may not be perfect parents, but we love them!
we try to be good zookeepers. we try to teach them responsibility. i pray that they are learning and learning by example. i'll be proud even if all they learn and understand is how to treat others. how to get along. how to work things out. how to find the solution and not drag on about the problems. how to enjoy where they are. how to be proud of who they are. how to stand up for themselves. how to help the team! how to pitch in.
i know they're smart, do well in school, do the right thing, go by the rules, live well, treat others the way they would like to be treated......but most of all, i hope we're training them well....training them to be good monkeys out in the world.
i'm so grateful that they are so good and loving and kind and talk to us about all of their ups and downs on their teenage rollercoaster....that's all a mom, dad or zookeeper can ask......keep talking to us and have a sense of humor in life....sometimes that's a gift!