Thursday, September 29, 2011

Moms Day Off

One of the little ones was telling us that they didn't want to continue school. We laughed and told him he would have to get used to it, and learn to like it, since he would be at school for a long time. As Hubbin and I discussed the matter, the realization set in, that we should do the same for our own work. I'll admit I started to get a little overwhelmed at the years that stretched before me. I could see hundreds of dirty diapers, piles of laundry, mountains of dishes, meals to be cooked, garbages to be emptied, and the list went on. The only end to my job, will be death. Hopefully in heaven the messes aren't so messy. As I thought about this, while complaining a little that my only day off is Sunday, and that just means double the work load on Monday, I realized that my attitude to the monotony of being a house wife better change quickly! So, change it, I did. I decided not to worry about days off, and enjoy and "put my shoulder to the wheel".
OK so fast forward 3 days. Yesterday was my turn! Hubbin changed the clock, to sneakily let me sleep in. Then he and the boys quietly got dressed and ready. He left, with #4 in tow. He dropped the boys off at school, and took #2 and #4 to the grocery store. (#2 was sick). By now, I was up and dressed and wondering where my family could be. As I started to straighten the house up, Hubbin #2, and #4 walked in grinning. "Your not supposed to do anything today Momma." #2 said. So I put the last dish in the dishwasher, ran it and sat on the rocking chair, wondering what my purpose was. Then #2 came and cuddled with me. It was so wonderful to just be able to let everything go, and cuddle my little sick boy. When he was finished cuddling, I decided to take a bubble bath. So, I did! With the door locked and everything. Wonderful! When I was good and pruny I got out and dressed. I blow dried my hair and carefully put on makeup. I brushed and flossed my teeth and used mouth wash! Then, Hubbin handed me the keys and the baby and told me to have a great day. So, I left. I went to an indoor tropical atrium, and leasurely drank in the colors of each vibrant flower. I listened to the sound of the water running, and smelled the wonderful smell of growing things. I browsed the library, then I checked out a pass to the Museum of Russian art. I drove out to Minneapolis in perfect silence. ahhhh.
The exhibits were amazing. I loved studying each peice of 7,000 year old pottery. I wondered about the artists that crafted them. Did they make them to sell, or to use around the house? Did they wonder if anyone would ever want to buy their art? I know they could never have imagined that 7,000 years later, some one would unearth their earthly treasures and put them on display for all to see. The upstairs and basement galleries were filled with work from one artist. A man named Oleg Vassiliev. He worked mainly on canvas and paper with oil paint and ink. I loved reading his story. Learning his style. Glimpsing in to his life. Wondering what it must be like, to know the freedom of art, but not being able to express it during a communist regime. There were two pieces that I really loved!!
First a print. When Oleg was in school, there were statues all over of famous leaders. They were every where to glorify communism. Oleg sketched several of the statues, but was criticized because of the downfall of communism. Later in life he got on top of a thatched roof, with a womens dress and a pillow to fill it out. He had a friend take his picture- and called it The Conductor of Crows.
I will venture a guess at the meaning of this picture, I would say that since the fall of communism in Russia, the economy has never really recovered and poverty is the new glorified status.
This one is a painting of his wife. A memory he has of her at the beach. He painted it of her after she died. I love the focus of light. In the writing next to the painting, he suggests that he also meant for the painting to be like she was walking in to the light. This is actually a different focus of light, than the one on display. But, it does give you a perspective of his ability to play with light variations, perspectives, and color. Isn't just like a dream or memory, how you can't quite focus all the details, you just can't quite get there. Brilliant!
One of the canvas and oils on display, was of self portrait of him sitting in front of a broken down building with a glass of vodka in front of him. The story behind it, was that he had always loved a painting of beautiful home with lavish gardens. He went to find the home, and when he did, he was met with a broken down shell of a home, that had become a shelter for local drunks. A sign rested on the homes outer wall that read-"protected by the state".
The perfect balance between political contraban, sketches from early years, children book illustrations, and later large scale detailed oils on canvas, really gave me insight in to the life of this man and artist.
I came home grinning and dancing with excitement. I told Hubbin all about my day. We ate lunch and fixed dinner. After dinner I blew out the candles on my cake- (Rocky road cake) and recieved my presents. A 2.5 lb. bag of Peanut Butter M&M's from Hubbin, A 1 lb. bag of Cheesey Corn puffs from #3, a bulk bag of pixie sticks from #1, and Body wash, puff ball, lotion, and spritzers set from the family. Then I got to soak my feet in a foot spa, later followed by a foot massage from Hubbin.
I must have fallen asleep by 9, because when I woke up this morning there were two messages on the answering machine wishing me happy birthday. Well, it was.

Friday, September 23, 2011

#5 the little Fashonista

My Uncle on my moms side is going to get married. We are all so excited for him. He is marrying a woman from Switzerland. After #5 was born, my uncle and his fiance took a trip to Paris. While they were there, the bought this precious outfit from the designer Sophie La Chipie.
It fits well now, and I think it will still fit well next spring. I like the design, and the fabric is so precious. Thank You Scott!
#2 was pretty overwhelmed the other night. He was sad because he wanted to be good in class, for his teacher, but he just couldn't control his body the way he was supposed to. He kept saying, "It's not fair, why did Heavenly Father give me this trial? Why would he make me like this, so I can't control my body? Maybe I should go back to therapy. How long do I have to be like this?" The whole time I just kept rubbing his back and telling him how great he was and how awesome he was and how some day, when he had to understand others who had trials that were hard like him, he would know how to have compassion for them. So often we look at our trials like #2. Joseph Smith did. He asked God in prayer, where he was, and why he was letting the trials that were so hard, continue. Heavenly Father answered that his trials would be but a small moment, and that he should endure them well.
So #2, on this 8 second ride we call life lets grin and hold on tight-Heavenly Father has great things in store for you! I Love You Bud!!!

Kindergartners are so sweet!

This is #3. He is now a kindergartner. His teacher is a wonderful woman. She believes that boys need extra recess, so she takes her class out for more exercise every day, snow, rain, or shine. #3 loves school, and the reports coming home say that he is a leader in his classroom. He really tries to help others be good. He has come home with many stickers and he is trying to win a school t-shirt for good citizenship. Way to go bud!

This is a picture of the boys in front of their new school.

#3 is a real problem solver. Here are a few pictures I will try to describe for you, so you can get the full effect. See the big tree behind the garage? He was trying to reach a branch that he could climb- by building a tower to get to the garage roof, so he could step on to a branch that hangs over the garage.
Next he used the strollers to climb on, and pull him self up with the little branches shooting out. He did eventually get up on to the tree.
The oreos sitting on the counter were on the top shelf at the back. #3 opened the cubboard door, then walked over to the dishwasher and opened it. He climbed on the door of the dishwasher, then opened the dish cupboard. Next he climbed up on the counter above the dishwasher. He used the cupboard door to steady him self as he walked from one side of the sink to the other-grabbing the other cupboard door to finish crossing the sink. Success! He reached the oreos and sat on the counter until every oreo was devoured-this was the scene I encountered as I came into the kitchen.
#3 knows that when the water gets splashed out of the bathtub, the basement floor gets wet. Dad recently went to North Dakota to help clean up flood damage on the Mouse River. He told us how some of the houses had floated off the foundations, and the basements were full. One day I went in to the bathroom and found #3 flooding the bathroom. I told him to stop playing in the water. I caught him at it twice more, and finally asked him why he was doing it. He said- "Mom, I am just trying to build a swimming pool in our basement" That is a bulb syringe for a plug-little smart stinker!

Date Night

This little man asked me on a date last week. He wanted to know if I had an open schedule on Friday night or Saturday. We went on Friday. He opened my door, made great conversation, took me to a carnival and shared his fruit cabob. We had burgers under a canopy, and danced to some pretty hip music. When I was in high school, I went on 3 dates. All of them were initiated by me, after some begging. Now I have 5 guys clamoring for my attention, sneaking kisses, and treating me like a lady. If I only knew then what I know now, I would have never let my self be sad! I am the luckiest Girl in the World, with 5 boys to kiss!

Give the boy a fish!

#4 has been trying to keep him self occupied during the day, now that 1, 2, and 3 are in school. This often includes a game of "fishing". But, unfortunately fishing was often done with computer parts, unhooked from the tower ie. keyboard, mouse, headsets, and speakers or x-box controllers. There was nothing wrong with the game, I just needed to change the tool out.
Here is a before and after
You will just have to scroll from the bottom up :)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Taking #2 out of the Kinesthetic/Intrapersonal/Sensory Processing Disorder Box, to let him think

Have you ever met a deep thinker?
Some one who is so focused on their own thoughts, that they do not hear anything else. As of late, I have been wondering what a deep thinker can do for a living. With so many wonderful thoughts to think, I would hate for my little deep thinker to be stuck at a 9 to 5 job, answering to a boss or deadline.
I wish I could pay for a personal tutor for my little deep thinker. I wish I could let him think all the thoughts he wants to think. Without having to stand in line, pay attention, or do work sheets.
I want to paint this picture for you. So, I will try to describe it, the best I can. I went to school today, to eat lunch with #1, #2, and #3. When it was time for me to eat with #2, I went to find him. He was out at recess. There were hundreds of kids running and playing. The play ground is slightly raised-about 1 foot off the ground, with a plastic retaining wall surrounding it. #2 was balancing the retaining wall. I walked up behind #2. I said his name. "OK mom, this is the rules, if you fall, you have to start again at the last corner" A kid from his class comes up to him, says his name, and asks him to play. He doesn't respond. Eventually the kid leaves. A girl ( looked like a 6th grader) sits on the retaining wall in front of him. "Please Move." She does, and on he goes. Undeterred. He makes it to the apparent starting point. "Yes, I win!! OK mom, what do you want?" I laugh and ask him to eat lunch with me. "No thanks, I have to make it around 2 more times before recess is over" Love you boy!
A few days ago I went to pick #2 up after school. He was sitting with about 100 kids in the Media Center. Every one was quiet, but it wouldn't have mattered if #2 was alone or with a million people he could not have been more deep in thought. I called his name. He glanced my way, and then went back on to thinking. A couple kids nudged him, but he didn't register it. The vice principal called his name, but he didn't notice. I walked over to him got down at eye level and said, "what are you thinking about bud?" He said, "How does she do it Mom?" "Who do what?" I dumbly asked He pointed to a mural on the wall where several "she's" stood out to me. "Oh like this" he says as he holds up a peace sign. Then I see the woman he is talking about. An African American hippy doing the peace sign with her fingers.
After recess, #2's teacher let him come and sit and chat with me for a while. We were sitting at a table when another family asked to sit with us. A european american mother with 2 african american sons. After a short conversation where #2 remained quiet, he finally spoke up. "did you adopt those 2 boys?" The mother said that their father was from Nigeria. "So he had dark skin and they have dark skin like him?" affirmative.
This week we talked about trials-one of them being school for #2, another trial being a mother who gets frustrated, and it seems like she does not understand. Dad said when he was a little boy he felt the same way. #2 said, "But then you learned that Heavenly Father gives us trials to help us be better, more like him?" yep, lesson was over.
Yesterday #2's Afterschool teacher pulled me aside. She was shaking with frustration. Been there, before comprehension. #2 just cannot come to the afterschool program any more. He is clearly not mature enough for the program. Maybe he can try again in the spring.
As I look at the situation with a perspective that is foriegn to me, I realize that some day #2 will be thinking freeing thoughts( I am reminded of Plato and Aristotle) , while this uninformed teacher will still be trying to put 1st graders into boxes labeled "will conform" or "reject".
If a picture really is worth a thousand words I have 2 for you

Man, have I seen that look before! Can't wait till the Spirit world when I get to swap stories with his Mom. By the way, do you think some relief society sisters are comforting Hitlers mom? I hope I get to! But that is beside the point.

By the way, I asked #2's teacher how he was doing today. She said, "well he does really good, except for transitions. It is almost like he doesn't hear me. Maybe you should check his hearing" :)