Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Cologne and Candy

Bill was looking confused. "Did you do this map search for the Cologne cathedral, or did I? I don't remember doing it, but maybe I did." I answered that I did. He asked why I was looking it up, and I told him that I was going there in a few months when I go out to see my brother with my parents. "That makes more sense now. I couldn't figure out why it was already open to the exact search I was going to do." I asked why he was looking at it. "Oh, I am doing a paper, and I needed some information about the cathedral."

What? My rocket scientist husband is writing a paper with some information about a cathedral in Germany? One I am planning to visit soon? And we both wanted to search for this random place on the map app? Weird.

Do you ever do something so weird or offensive or awkward or just uncharacteristic of your normal self that you can't stop thinking about it or feel really silly or stupid for way longer than necessary?

Earlier tonight, I picked something up from the store for a friend, and I thought, "I'll just grab some candy for my friend. That will cheer her up. It always cheers me up." So, I brought her goods to her house, handed the bag to her daughter, and said, "This is for your mom, but wait just a second. I need to get a few of these because I am starving." I got some of the candy out, way more than I could even hold in my hand because I kept dropping pieces, and started chowing down. I know it was weird. (Here, I got you this. But let me get some for myself first...) But I really was starving....

And the sad thing is, it wasn't really that uncharacteristic of my normal self. If you want, you can tell me about your awkward moments. It might make me feel less stupid. Also, my friend seems to still like me.

I had a super busy day. It reminded me how much I like to be involved and how much energy I get from being around other people. (A total extrovert...) It also reminded me that I get super tired when I over schedule myself. Luckily, I rarely do that.

A friend died today. I haven't kept in touch with him the last twelve years, but he was an awesome person when I was in high school and at college. I feel a little sad thinking about his young family.

Another thing happened to make me feel like a bad parent. Carter came home from school, and he was stressed out. He got on my laptop and started doing some of his math. "Mom, is it okay if I work on this for a while? I really want to learn about binary numbers." And then he watched a few educational science videos. He finished and then let out a huge sigh of relief. "Aaaahhh. I feel sooo much better now."

The thing that makes me feel like a bad parent is that it is so clear that he gets bored, which makes him act out and get stressed. I am just not challenging him enough. His math teacher said she really wants him in with the seventh and eighth graders, but it just doesn't work with the school schedule. And then he comes home and does nothing to challenge himself in any possible way, most days anyway. Well, I had better get on that challenge!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Family Secrets Come to Light

Does anybody else have family secrets, stories that have recently come to light? Well, I heard a really interesting one tonight.

When I was in college, and the younger three siblings were still at home, my brother spent a couple of hours working with Becky, fixing her makeup to make her look like a different person. He worked with her to teach her how to stick her jaw out differently and speak in a different voice. And if you know anything about Becky as a kid, you probably remember her talking in different voices, one in particular. Matt then put a long curly white wig on her and arranged it just so. They had a strange green and white checkered jacket left at their house from a play that Heather and Matt had recently performed in. He dressed her (well, she probably dressed herself; she was fourteen, you know) and arranged her outfit and her jewelry and made her unrecognizable. Little Heather was his accomplice. Then, came the part that I am so sad that they did not video. Becky went outside, rang the doorbell, and when my mom answered, she said, "Excuse me, miss, but I am going door to door, trying to sell my homemade jam. Would you like to buy some?" "Well, what kind do you have?" "I have peach and strawberry." My mom asked several more questions. Becky came up with answers that were plausible, somehow. Then, "How much are you selling your jam for?" After several minutes, Becky couldn't do it anymore. She started taking her wig off. My mom looked completely shocked. Becky's jaw dropped. "Mom!" My mom looked at her, puzzled. "Becky? Is that you?"

And that's the kind of younger siblings I have...

I was lucky enough to get a happy birthday sung to me in that one particular voice very recently. It made me happy.

Preston came in my room one day last week. I was in the middle of looking up some information and was not really paying attention to him. "Mom, do you have a job?" I absentmindedly answered, "No." He giggled, "I don't think you're really telling the truth about that." I looked at him. "What kind of job do you think I have?" (I was hoping for secret agent...) "You're a mom!"

I guess that's better than secret agent, but I still want the cool black pants and awesome boots with six inch heels that they can somehow still fight in without breaking a sweat or limping afterward for weeks.

I am visiting my sister this week. Sadie keeps bugging Ruby, my two-year-old niece. Ruby is getting very protective of anything Sadie might want to hold, her blanket, books, toys, and mom. She won't let her get close to her bedroom or her booster seat or her food. And now, she keeps saying, with a cute fake pout, "Sadie hit/kicked/hurt me." Once or twice, it was even true.

Yesterday, Ruby told me, "Here is my belly button. I have a belly button on my back, too." "No, you just have a belly button on your tummy." "Oh. Why?" "You just have one on your tummy. That's where belly buttons go." Oh, but I have one on my back, too?" "No, just on your tummy." Looking like she finally understood, "Oh."

Last week, Bill snowboarded down the back steps. He did it twice so he would get more than three seconds of a ride this year. The kids kept asking, "Why are you doing something dangerous, Dad?" Maybe I will figure out how to post the video. Preston made the video and narrated.

I helped Ruby say a prayer. I was telling her part of a sentence at a time, she would repeat it, and then I would tell her the rest. It was going really well. Then, "Thank you..." "Take you for chicken." Well, that wasn't exactly what I was going to say....