Thursday, September 23, 2010

Well, it's happened.  Garrett's flawless academic record has been tarnished.  All my hopes and dreams are shattered.  His chances of getting a full ride to Harvard based on charm and obedience, not to mention dashing looks have come to an end.  (listen, don't tease....look at his parents.  of course Ivy League hopes cannot be dependent upon brains).  That's right folks....I got a note home from school.  Preschool.

It's not that I don't think my child can get in trouble.  In fact, he is quite familiar with trouble....but usually only with the (5) people he feels really comfortable with.  Up until this point,  it's been all "he's so sweet." "most well-behaved child in the class".  Ha.  I knew this was an act, but I was okay with it.  In fact, I was hoping to ride the glory train of good behavior thru the 12th grade....and beyond.  I was banking on the idea that G was too hesitant to draw attention to himself, to misbehave.  Despite the fact that this trait clearly did not come from my genes, I had planned to take full advantage of it!

Until yesterday.  And, I will just tell you--I'm still in shock.  Disbelief that he's gone from hanging on my leg and barely uttering a peep the whole day, to getting reprimanded for excessive talking and refusing to clean up trains.  My mind was fast forwarding to a time when I'd be called into the principal's office because he hid up in a tree and threw rocks at a school bus.  No wait, that was my brother.  Anyway, he's in big trouble.  But, since it's his birthday weekend, I've decided to let him out of his room.

Kidding.  Totally kidding.
I am not a criminal.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Happy Last Day of Summer! The season is going out with a bang, considering it's 92 degrees outside. I, for one, am over it! And that's saying alot for someone who rarely leaves the house between 10am and 3pm:) I am ready for apples, and pumpkins and crisp, cool mornings. But until then--here's what we've been doing this summer (courtesy of my iPhone):

going to the zoo...
notice my 'death grip' on her leg...b/c my girl would crash to the ground in 1 sec otherwise.

this picture cracks me up. i think it was windy, but there is a high probability her hair was just standing up like that. we have hair issues.

playing in the sand and construction zone at the new house. many, many hours spent watching the diggers from the air conditioning of the mommy mobile. we are going to have another house to watch next's been so fun!

swimming lessons. bless ms macy's heart:) i'm not sure how much he learned, but i learned that there is nothing more funny than watching a 3yr old try the 'side stroke'.

looking at the water, where G wants to feed the fish and L just wants someone to push her into the shade, or stick her feet in the fountain. whew, it's been hot!

going out to eat has been the story of our lives this summer:( try as i might, i have not been very successful at home cooking. i'm blaming the quality of appliances, but a certain amount of stir-crazy might also have been a contributor.

riding toys...between the hours of 8 and 9 am:)

That's it. We are an exciting people, I tell you. Here's to the first day of fall....with temperatures falling to 90 degrees!

Monday, September 20, 2010

One time, after 1 child, but before 2, I had a friend who's husband was out of town. He called me to run over and check on her and the kids (2) because he hadn't been able to get ahold of her. I go over, answer. Ring the door answer. I start to get worried and peek in the windows and Oh My Goodness--the mess! The cabinets open, things pulled out, toys everywhere--it was a total state of upheaval. And, I swear, I thought my friend had been a victim of a break-in. And now, I totally get it. My house looks like that at least some point during the day...and especially Mondays.

In case you are keeping up with my 'dislikes'....Monday has officially replaced Sunday as my most hated day. Sundays have gained favor because my children now enjoy going to the nursery (shock!) at church, and getting there doesn't seem like quite the ordeal it used to be. But, Mondays are an entirely different deal--after a weekend of peace, love, and harmony (don't laugh), the beginning of the week is a system shock.

Lilah has 3 of 4 therapies on Mondays, which I hate. I love getting them over with (excellent attitude, right?) and actually really like all of her therapists at this point--but, I hate watching her struggle. I know it's what she needs, what's good for her, she needs pushed, yada, yada, yada....I just don't like it. It's terrible to watch your child's pleading eyes, saying "why the hell don't you help me?". (FYI, I make up what Lilah might be saying all the time, and she cusses. A lot.) And, it's awful to read the reports on your child...detailing her problems, ranking her poor development, setting goals for things like 'will prop herself up on arms for 15 sec'.

But, it's always helpful to have the perspective of an almost-4 year old. A couple of weeks ago, I was telling Garrett as he went to bed the night before that the next morning was Monday, therapy day. And he said: "Oh I love the ferapies. They are the best thing about Lilah." You just have to laugh. And wait for Tuesdays.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

            We've had a big weekend, full of lots of celebrating.  Birthday chaos, if you will.  All of it fun...and some of it funny.

            Our first party yesterday was a 1st birthday for some friends who are newly back to Knoxville.  When we left the house, we were in the middle of a flood warning--it was pouring!  Getting all 4 of us out the door, into carseats, back out of the car, and into someone's house is not an easy feet on a sunny day, much less in the pouring rain.  It took P and I several minutes to come up with a 'plan' (we are not braniacs, obviously) which went something like this:  I carry diaper bag and present and umbrella and he carries 30lb angel and walks us to the door, then Paul parks car and meets us inside with Garrett.  Good plan, right?

                Paul rings doorbell, hands me bicep-crushing baby, who I balance on 1 hip, with a counter-balance of a huge present (which, btw: Paul tells me on the way there "oh, the invitation said no presents."  thankyou very much, it is really no trouble to drag two children thru the Target toy section to pick out a toy for someone else.) and an equally huge diaper bag disguised as a purse...and he runs back to car.  I walk in, make introductions  "hi, I'm Gina, this is Lilah" and hand my present to someone I don't recognize.  Actually, I didn't recognize anyone, but that never stopped me before.  Someone offers me a drink.  This is festive, I think.  I've never been to a 1st birthday party that served champagne.  Fancy.  And speaking of fancy, I might be a little underdressed.   And then I see the little cookies, wrapped in cellophane, labeled "Welcome Baby Camden" and for a split-second I think, I didn't know she was pregnant again

           And that, is when it all comes together.....the wreath on the door made from diapers and bottles (I thought she was recycling the birthday girl's baby wreath)....all the women....the fact that this house was uber-decorated and my people just moved to this house.  Or actually, not this house.

          "Uhm, you all are going to think I'm crazy," I stammer.  And pause, because I'm still processing.  "I think I might not be in the right place.  What kind of party is this?".  "It's a baby shower for Angie Ford.  You are at Sarah Smith's house."  "I'm supposed to be at a birthday party", I say.  And at that moment, I might as well have been the greatest stand-up comic of all time--because I had that place in stitches.  These women (I had noticed by now that there were no men at this party) were hootin' and hollerin'.  Seriously, hysterics!  They were grabbing their sides from laughter pains, poking each other between breaths, saying "I wondered who invited her", and taking my picture.  I was laughing, and Lilah who laughs by association, was happy and clapping excitedly.

       After I regained my composure and my wit (which is questionable at this point, I know), I realized our party was next door.  I try frantically to call my umbrella man, who did not answer, before I trudged across the lawn in the rain.  I am maybe a bit peeved by this point, wondering what the heck he's been doing all this time and why he hasn't rescued us by now.  In an effort to escape the rain, I go into the right party and you know what???  HE and GARRETT were ALREADY INSIDE, partying it up!!!

       Seriously?  Seriously!?!  At this point I just have to laugh, b/c this is really the funniest thing.  What the heck was he thinking?  But, I know what he's thinking, by the look on his face.   NOTHING:)  He said "Hi", as in, oh there you are, you must have been in the kitchen.   He did not even realize he had walked us to the wrong door.   He had just parked the car and followed someone else inside.  Looking back, I wonder how long it would have taken him to put it together....not that I have any room to talk.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Happy Friday! Hope you are able to enjoy some relaxation.......

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I don't often look back at old blog posts. I'm not ready. It's like pouring salt on an open wound for just hurts too badly to remember, so vividly, how it happened when she got sick. What we went through. What she went through. But, I'm glad it's there....a virtual diary, for someday. And today was one of those days, because it struck me, as I was picking her up from her first day, that this day, September 7th, is a big day. It was 2 years ago today.....that we found out she was sick.

Talk about coincidence, or irony, or providence, or something....that on the anniversary of something so dark, something so momentous for her would happen. Whatever it is, it is not lost on us. We are thankful beyond words... for who Lilah is, for a community that loves her, for grace and mercy in the hardest of times, and the unique blessing to be able to truly see a glimpse into His purpose and plan for her life. It brings me to my knees to read the kind and sincere words of many of you those 2 years ago, and since then. Thankyou. We continue to covet your prayers for her health, development, and protection.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Like all good people of a certain age, Paul's mom got the bug to 'downsize' a couple of years ago. I have decided that since everything she looked at below 3000sq feet was deemed 'too small', this was code for 'new'--not that there is anything wrong with that. Her new persons of advanced age community is lovely and full of folks that are tidy, and organized, and rule-oriented. I know this because there is a handbook about two-inches thick concerning expectations of residents. I can't say I've read it, but I do know that "guests may not use amenities without the company of a resident'. I can also say with a certain amount of confidence that the 5+ cars overflowing her driveway on any given Burch get-together are not received warmly. And I'm pretty sure the crazy amounts of pool paraphernalia, towels, and children that seem to be multiplying are frowned upon. I tell you all this because I'm a bit afraid the Burch clan might already be the ugly step child of Fairview Oaks (I totally made that name up, btw, but it sounds right, doesn't it?).

And then. Yesterday, I took G swimming for the last time of the season (sigh of relief) and we had the pleasure of the company of a few residents and the "keeper of the pool", who clearly took this high elected office seriously. He's the man that enforces the pool rules and regulations and stipulations and decrees, so I was already nervous that we were unaccompanied (Granny keeps L for me). Garrett declares loudly that he "has to pee"--which is just what every other swimmer wants to hear, right? And then continues to assure me that "he thinks he can hold it and wants to wait"--also, very comforting.:) So, when it's time to get out, and all eyes are on us---which is very normal, because G is much more exciting to watch than whatever it is they were reading--I make a barricade of a towel and a chair so he can change. He pulls down his swimsuit and I grab the towel (the only one I had) to dry off his body.

It was just like I had pushed a magic button, because, as the suit came down, the pee-pee came out. It took me a second to realize what was going on b/c I was busy drying his hair, but then I noticed the 4 ft high urine arch and the subsequent run-off all over the concrete pool patio. G usually asks me first before he pees outside, so I think he must have just thought that since he had said he had to 'go' and we got out of the pool and we pulled off his pants--that, peeing was the plan. Seems logical to me now, but it never dawned on me then.

So, I could feel the beady hot eyes on my back, and I did what anyone who was swimming without permission, whose child had just urinated all over the concrete where these sweet people rest their toes, and who had no cup to rinse it off, would have done......I ducked my head, gathered our things, and ran like hell. And took the back way to my MIL's condo.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Meet the Teacher

My kids had 'meet the teacher' today at preschool. That's right....I said kids. You probably already know this, because I've been telling everyone within a 10 foot radius that Lilah, too, is going to Mother's Day Out this fall. Partly because I am really excited to have someone else 'teaching' her. Partly because, oh my word, the potential of being alone in my house for any time whatsoever is thrilling. But, mostly, because I am experiencing shock and awe that this sweet little program wants her.

I know, that sounds terrible, right? She's beautiful, sweet, loving, blah, blah, blah. She is all those things, but she's hard work. She's heavy and fussy and almost totally dependent. And this program is under no obligation to take her, much less ask if I would please send her this year. But they did. "She'll be no more trouble than any of the others" they said. "We would love to have her", they told me. And that, to any mother, but especially this mother is music.

Because, with my healthy child, I never worried that he'd be wanted. But, with her, I have visions of years of schooling where she is really neither wanted nor loved by her teachers. It's top 5 of my 'keep me awake at night' fears....that she will be and feel like a burden.

Her sweet teachers were fantastic and they were cool as cucumbers throughout the medical dissertation that started with heart failure and ended with seizures... after mentions of g-tube, scholeosis, and nissen fundoplication. They carted L around the room, showing her different toys, while I explained how (little) she communicates and where the safe places in the room would be for her. I think Lilah is going to love it....she needs and wants the social interaction and we all need a change of pace around here. I have high hopes:)

I just want her to be wanted. And whatever her 'educational' future holds, I am sure thankful that it gets to start off like this. In a sweet little school, full of typical peers...wanted and (I hope) loved.