Sunday, September 25, 2016

september morn, and lots of hot september days, in run on sentences.

it has been 90+ degrees all september long. i want to like september. there is plenty to like about september. i just struggle with liking september because it's still so hot. i'm always sweaty. i'm unpleasantly sweaty. but i carry on. 

everything that happened in september in single sentences:

halloween decor made it's first appearance and athena blythe loves it. 

hersch just knows to smile during pictures now.

friday football dress code has resumed:

athena blythe finagled a jewelry counter worker to let her try on a $1500 diamond necklace.

half-marathon training is in full force.

indoor camping to appease athena blythe's relentless requests for real outside camping.

athena blythes first day of school, but not really because i can't read a calendar and school really started the next day, but i took pictures and she insisted on smiling like this and saying, "awwwww" over and over. 

 real first day of school.

 my lunchbox napkins are some of my best work:

 athena blythe's school has a pretty cool library that i had to drag two screaming kids out of. 

i'm trying to be a fun mom and taking all the kids to the park on thursday evenings to eat taco bell and chik fil a and play the night away but it's still so hot that i'm cranky after 20 minutes. 

herschel is my darling baby who takes too few naps because of his siblings busy school schedules.

thomas and i went to the temple and it was manna to my soul.

since we have 1230 to 330 church, we eat two huge, carby meals on sunday and i've really perfected my chicken parmesan as a result.

the scarlett modeling sessions continue and i don't mind.

scarlett and i went to the women's broadcast at church, i think she even did a pretty good job paying attention. 

i curled her long locks for church today. 

i looked best in this picture and everyone else looked typical but there was nothing typical about our great primary program today at church. 

goodbye, sweaty september!

2 weeks notice

end of september sounds like a great time for a end of summer recap. the last two weeks of summer i feel like i tried to jam in as much "fun" as possible. it was exhausting.
  highlight 1- a visit from my dear friend julie from simpsonville and her kids. we swam at our pool and then hit up the mayfield dairy tour. disclaimer, the tour does not include any real cows. it's more of a milk bottling and distribution center with a tour. no milking on site. no cows on site! ice cream was "included" with your $4 tour ticket. i feel like adding "unnecessary" quotation marks to things to convey my "true" "feelings". any chance to wear hairnets is worth it to me though. 

reagan still does not like ice cream.

more modeling portfolio shots:

hersch did not take a nap that day. the tour guide was more worried about his "hair" contaminating the milk. i would be more worried about diapers and irritability.

reagan wore his hair net for the rest of the day.

"two thumbs up for the ice cream!" - anonymous unofficially lactose intolerant mother of 4 who ate 2 servings since her oldest does not like ice cream and ice cream cannot be wasted, even at the expense of driving home like a maniac during rush hour in order to get to a bathroom in time.

reagan wore his hair net for the rest of the day.
so full points for this excursion. 

highlight2- if i'm being honest, taking my kids shopping is a struggle. at the beginning of summer, any day that we had an outing, which was most days, i would have to lay down on the couch just to recover. i don't consider myself faint of heart, but my kid's age spread, and one boy's disability, for the LOVE, it was the only way.
we decided to make our back to school shopping a family affair. it sound risky but so does shopping for clothes for numerous children by myself.

 thomas took the kids and ran interference while i waited in line to make purchases. from start to finish, our shopping trip took 2 hours, including the mall and target. we're ready for anything after that. 

athena blythe tricked us into buying this jacket for her, even though end of september is still 90 degrees. 

scarlett is at that delightful 9 year old age where she absolutely talks me ear off all day long. i love her. she's funny and creative, but the  20 minute commentary on all the reasons she chose this pencil bag was even too much for me. she has so much to say. 

highlight 3- the end of summer birthday pool party. since we had no parties for the kid's birthday parties i said we could do a party at the pool. i planned as little as possible, i scrounged together a bunch of old napkins and water bottles and i picked up a costco cake. party heidi style.

pool parties are the easiest parties. any mess can be hosed off. someday i'd like to have a kitchen with a stamped concrete floor. 

minor highlights- i organized my closet. no more shoe pile. my goal by winter is to half my wardrobe in order to only own what i love. lofty goal. who wants an early 2000s wedding dress?

this kid doing what this kid does:

meet the teacher at scarlett's new school. we met her and all our kids acted normalish. people fight to be room mother at this school so i pretty much found my dream setting and i don't have to do a thing but send in treats and supplies, which i'll gladly do.

our harry potter birthday dinner. naturally. 

the end. hurray.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

be kind, try hard, repeat

a recurring theme in my life is that a love/hate running, or shuffling and crying as i appear to be doing lately. i've discussed this all before. recently, i left for a run one ridiculously hot and humid saturday morning while i was mentally preparing my sharing time lesson for primary on sunday. i had no specific assignment and i was trying to use my run as meditation time to pull some things together. my new neighborhood is full of the toughest runs i have ever had. my 7 mile run here is the elevation equivalent of my 12 mile run in south carolina. so, in short, absolutely killer. i rethink my running capabilities every time i'm out. on this particular day i was only a mile or 2 in and i was hating myself and everything around me and gauging my personal worth on my speed or lack thereof. i had already been passed by the entire local high school reigning state champion cross country team and that was pretty much the point i decided i was going to quit and walk home. i make this threat to myself often, but it 's dangerous because i always think i may actually do it. at the crest of the next hill as i was going up, a group of neighborhood runners was coming down. one guy who i had never seen before in my life looked me right in the eye and smiled and said, "good job." and that was it. that was the difference in me quitting and me continuing for another 6 miles. someone who i didn't know, taking the time to say nice things to me made me feel like i could try harder. so, there was my lesson for primary. what difference can we make in the lives of others when me make an effort to try hard and be kind, even if we don't know them? it's a circle. oftentimes, we are petrified to try hard or be kind but they go together, hand in hand. that small gesture of kindness changed the course of my morning. the kids in my primary would be starting the new school year the next week and i felt that we needed to encourage kids to look out for those who need friends and to be kind. 

a running aside, i am the queen of chub rub. it's a royal title that is also a burden. finding shorts that allow me to run fluidly in heat is a long struggle that is short on results. punny. i found these mid-thigh compression shorts on marked down to $13 so i bought a couple pairs. they are fantastic and they hold EVERYTHING in so that the only things keeping cadence are my feet and not my stomach rolls. the full, MOMification is complete. hip to the square stylish mom shorts and boudreax's butt paste on my arm pits and i absolutely glide like a gazelle. a very slow, wobbly gazelle. now, i am the queen of mom shorts. it's a lateral title change that i'll accept.

the end

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

same old autism song and dance

my monthly dose of drama. 

since we moved, i knew getting reagan back to his school from last year, where he absolutely thrived, was going to be difficult. though he was placed at that school by the district, it's still never a done deal and there are about a million hoops to jump through to even talk to a real live person from the district. long story short, i was given bad information by the receptionist nemesis at reagan's school, information i KNEW was wrong because the nemesis had never been helpful or a fount of knowledge, but i accepted it and hoped for the best. what do you do? challenge the person who is supposed to be helping you and gave you the answer you wanted to hear??? she said that i had nothing to worry about and reagan could easily go to the school we wanted him to. so i sat on it and hoped for the best. i blame myself, but in my experience, most school districts, even really excellent school districts like we live in, try and keep parents at arms length and a little in the dark. so, a few days before school started, i got a phone call that reagan wasn't placed, or even registered after all. i made a zillion phone calls and cried and prayed. on the last possible day, i finally was able to speak with the director of special education for the district and she heard my pleas and my plight and actually agreed with me that reagan should be placed at his old school. great. it's great to actually talk to an administrator and even better when they say, "sure, if he's doing well, let's make this work!" all we needed was approval from the principal. no big deal, i was feeling really confident. everyone loves reagan. as soon as i got off the phone, i fell to my knees because i felt like staying at his old school was now clearly the wrong decision. what the what? my track record shows that i'm better at choosing the wrong and then choosing the right. i have to make a decision and then i can see clearly what really needs to happen. i prayed and i almost called the district director back to ask for him to be placed at a new school. it don't make no sense. why would i feel like that? i texted thomas with my crazy surprising thoughts and i waited for the return call from the school. about 20 minutes later, i got that call. the district adminstrative assistant called with the news that the principal denied the permissive transfer and that reagan would go to a new school. i was shocked and calm and angry at the same time. i was mad at the principal not approving. why not? there's no good reason to say no, when the district director said yes!!! i know it makes no sense for me to be upset when i felt the Spirit push me another way. but, it's very frustrating as a parent to feel like your opinion is not as important as an administrator's whim. my faith is pretty weak. i don't want to put reagan in more new experiences that i don't have to. it's hard on all of us and torturous on him. but i'm not afraid to make him stronger through experiences. and i guess me stronger too. i'm a conundrum wrapped in a panic attack. 
i didn't fight the decision though. we jumped in the car to head to the new school and meet his new teacher, on the last possible day to do so before school started. this change was supposed to be the best thing and i can't deny spiritual promptings, though apparently i try to, so we pushed forward. 
my dear friend, paula, took the rest of the kids so that i could give my full attention to getting reagan settled. she even provided m&ms for reagan(his favorite) and peanut butter m&ms for me, which turned out to be breakfast and lunch for me that day. full points for protein. 

we spent the weekend talking about new schools and driving by the new schools and once again, poor scarlett got the shaft as the entire weekend was mostly spent pumping up reagan. she's also starting a new school and i know she was nervous too. i'm proud of her for taking the bull by the horns and moving forward and trying really hard to chat up new friends. her outfit was on point. she is fashionably outspoken and fearless. exactly what i want for her.

sunday night we had priesthood blessings from thomas and the Spirit was so strong. each blessing was so detailed for each child that i knew it was from our Father in Heaven. i always get a blessing too, and it was like a conduit from heaven to my brain. my fears were calmed, my personal goals for myself were affirmed and strengthened. this is going to be a great year for everyone. 

5th, 4th, diapers

the face of reagan anxiety. he was trying, bless his heart.

another fake smile because he was not excited about sitting on a ball instead of a chair. 
he was wearing black socks, "because i was already wearing them from church yesterday." truth. fair enough logic. 

car line pick up. car line is a necessary evil. i'm going to start listening to audiobooks to drown out hersch's crying.

i did buy myself some new CDs for the car. i love lionel richie and prince so i picked up some greatest hits. lionel is so soothing!

scarlett took this ultra flattering picture of me reading our nightly story. clearly, i was in a great mood and using all my best story time voices. "goldilocks and the totally overworked, really annoyed and tired mom".  the school year is as busy as summer, but a different, "needs to be more physically presentable" kind of different. my swimsuit is not a bra, and i acknowledge that.

the end.