Here we come, Pueblo, here we come!



Stella qualified for State Fair in June with her dance team's Champion placing for their pom dance to Eye of the Tiger.




Today, Sandis and Dobby qualified for State Fair with her reserve champion placing in Intermediate Novice Showmanship.




In addition, Sandis is on the Weld County Rabbit Judging Team for State Fair and Stella is the first alternate. 





That is two, count 'em, TWO, fabulous weekends in the lovely Pueblo.  Very proud of my girls :)  Also wishing State Fair was not in Pueblo.
  
  

Recipe for a difficult day

   

How to have a tough day:

First, have it be the day your nephew should have turned 18 years old.  He should have graduated high school and be less than two months from starting college.  Instead, it's been just over a year since he passed.
Next, attend the memorial service for your husband's graduate adviser.  A man who also died too young, though he did have 64 years, they were not enough.

Attending that service, experiencing all of the outpouring of caring and love was doubly difficult as it was two men who left the earth too soon filling my mind.  Filling my eyes with tears.  Making my soul ache.

Fortunately, I was able to know these people while they lived.  I have memories, many happy memories, to sustain me.  And a busy day tomorrow to block out the sorrow.

 


Sandis, ready for college



Last week, for our drive to Arkansas, I had brought two bottles of beer in our cooler along with various snacks for the car trip.  I was thinking I might enjoy one after a long drive with children. Who wouldn't, right?  Well, our day was more adventurous than we had planned, with a breakdown and subsequent 2.5 hour wait at the Kansas roadside, complete with ticks crawling across the pavement to us.

Finally, we were rescued by our tow truck and taken to a hotel.  Upon arriving, this sign was displayed in the lobby:




When Brian arrived at our hotel room, I told him of the sign.  Sandis pipes up saying, "well, mommy, you better drink them up!"

Yep, she's ready for college.




Go Shopping and the Devil Arrives



Brian & I went grocery shopping sans children.  They are old enough now plus the older one has taken the babysitting class.  We left them one cell phone while we took the other (even though we have a landline.)  This is what happened.  Green is Sandis/the devil, white is Brian or I.  Hydra is Sandis' lizard.

 






  
Apparently, the devil is a sucker for biscuits, who knew?

  

Parent of the Year




For various reasons, we have had to get up early for nearly two weeks straight.  Some days we had to be up as early as 5am, other days we had the "luxury" of sleeping until 7am.  This may be normal to some, but not to the Walter girls who generally sleep until 8:30 or 9am, occasionally, 10am.  (Yes, I do work, but my hours are flexible and I take advantage of that.)

This morning however, all of that has come to an end.  A brief end, as the children have camp next week, but an end nonetheless. Yesterday I informed my children that anyone who woke me up on Friday would be punched in the face.

Sandis woke me up at 8:30am.

Not only did she wake me up at 8:30am, but she also woke up her sister, who had crawled into my bed at some point in the night.  And she didn't wake us gently with breakfast or song.  Or even in typical child fashion by jumping on the bed.  No, she wakes us by sticking a scaly, blue-tongued creature in our face and saying, "Hydra says hi!"

Yeah, that.  Let that sink in.  Being woken up by a lizard less than an inch from your face.

Despite all of that I did NOT punch her, face or elsewhere.  This probably sets a bad precedent.  While I'm sure my children didn't THINK I would punch them in the face, as judged by 1) their giggles when I threatened it, and 2) the fact that she woke me up even with the aforementioned threat, now they KNOW I won't punch them in the face.  Damn it, now I must think of a new threat.

Still, the fact that I did NOT punch her in the face after being not only awoken, but awoken in a rude way, entitles me to the award of Parent of the Year. Or at least the day.

Another blog?! Yep!



I'm doing some important to me but probably boring to you writing over at http://chaosstartingnow.blogspot.com/ .  If you want to follow my personal life struggles as opposed to my parenting life struggles, you can head over there.



The cult(ure) of busy




I know, I'm not supposed to support the culture of busy.  We as a society are too busy, too scheduled, and we glorify it. Our nation tends to equate being busy to being productive.  Why would be stay at home and relax when we could be DOING.  If we don't DO enough of the THINGS we will die sad and unfulfilled.  Right?

I fought against it.  I read the living slowly books.  I took time to let my toddlers follow the ants across the sidewalk for hours at a time.  Every autumn I would bundle them off to the park and river for leaf walks, carefully collecting and pressing those foliage prizes like precious memories that could be preserved forever.  Ah bliss.

Oh how things change.

These children I now have want to DO ALL THE THINGS.  I try to limit them - one athletic endeavor, one other activity per child.  Not too bad, I can handle that.

Ok, but violin lessons don't count because that's music and school, right? And quasi-school doesn't count either, because that's school and my only day off.  Surely therapy doesn't count, even if it is six or so times a month, because it's THERAPY.  And, oh, that ONE additional activity is 4H and has about a million subactivities.  Maybe not a million, but approximately four weekly practices.

And now, here we are, busy.  Me, the person who wants to curl in a ball on the couch and do nothing for days on end is engulfed in chaos.  So much is going on that I have cling to those moments at home for dear life lest they fly past me.  I don't try to venerate busyness, I loathe it.  And yet here I am, out three nights a week, a couple weekdays along with every Saturday and many Sundays, schleping kids to activities.

And I have to work, because, well, we like eating and living indoors.*  That sends me out of the house a couple days a week too.

Each of these activities have value.  They all promote something in them that I love seeing develop.  Responsibility, confidence, self esteem, sportsmanship, education, team work, leadership...the list goes on.  As much as I'd like to cut some of this craziness out of my life, I think I'll simply continue to be busy for the next 6-8 years at which time I can retire to my blanket fort and play solitaire.

For now though, I live for them, and their life is, well, busy.


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* Please don't tell me if they didn't have the activities I could stop working.  I barter to pay for some, some other things are free..  4H is cheap, really cheap.  Therapy is necessary.  Stopping everything would not save vast amounts of money, certainly not nearly my pay.