Sunday, September 30, 2007

All About Me - For Strangers

I'm Sara M. I'm very mysterious, in that I show pictures of myself and my family on my blog, mention places and friends, but for safety I never mention my last name. Do you see the logic in that? Me neither.

So, I'm married to a (usually) great guy named Daniel, and we've been married for about 10 years. He works, while I go to college (I should graduate in December 2009). He's also quite a nerd, playing fantasy football and watching news channels all day. However, he is also extremely handsome and a good husband and father. And I love him. But, this is supposed to me about me, not Daniel.

We have 3 kids, which we still don't believe. Abby is 5, and in Kindergarten at a Christian private school. She's all about princesses and fingernail polish - not a drop of tomboy in her. She's very hard to convince to eat, sleep, or clean her room, but she is very eager to help me around the house.

Avery is 3, and has a very loud voice and high-pitched scream. Do not go around him if you have a headache, or your hearing aid turned up all the way. He loves pushing his trucks through the house, and turning on his remote control trains and letting them drive themselves into walls all day.

Ethan is about a year and a half old. He's the baby in every way, and quite spolied. He's big and cuddly, but tough and headstrong all at the same time. I hate seeing him get older, because he may or may not be my last baby.

We live somewhere in the midwest (hint: there is a Springfield in our state), although I grew up in New Mexico and Daniel grew up in Louisiana. We're a Christian family, and we're trying really hard to be outdoor people. We don't have a dishwasher, but we do have a really nice kitchen that Daniel made all by himself.

So, there you have it. One is too many.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Best Part

Have you ever been asked that horribly hard to answer question, "what's the best thing about having kids?"

Seriously. How do you even begin to answer that one?

Is it when they're sleeping? Even though it might sound like a joke, aren't all babies especially precious when they're sleeping? Or what about when they first look up at you and say "mama"? Or when they first learn to give kisses - those adorable, wet, open-mouth, sloppy kisses that they want to give you for about ten minutes straight? What about when you're nursing your baby and notice they've stopped slurping away, and when you look down they smile up at you with their mouth full of mommy, and milk drips out of the corners of their mouth?

As my kids grow, I find that my "favorite" thing about having kids is constantly changing - sometimes by the phases of their growth, and sometimes by the minute. There are so many "moments" when you're raising kids, and sometimes these moments affect you differently than other times. For instance, sometimes it's really as cute as can be that Avery loves to help me so much with laundry, washing himself in the tub, getting the mail, etc. But those other times... Man, it gets on my nerves to take so long to do everything.

Yes, kids are cute and it's fun to raise them. But is it really possible to have just one thing that's the best about having kids? Maybe you have to have kids yourself to understand this? But really, think about it - do you have any one memory with your kids that's better than any other memory? If you think long enough, aren't there just so many times that you've really loved having kids, or doing certain things with your kids, or even certain things your kids have done or said?

One thing. Sure....

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Avery Gravy

Avery the two-year-old!

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!
Who knew little boys were so adorable and sweet?

Monday, September 17, 2007

Hippie Mommies

I remember when I was about 14 and wanted to be a hippie. It was just a cool thing to be - you know, the in thing. I got over that, and maybe even ended being a little preppy considering what I aspired to be in 1994. Now I have 3 kids, and I find myself in competition with other moms to see who can be the most hippie-ish. If that's even a real word.

So, it turns out I'm considered a partial follower of "natural parenting," and I didn't even know it. Some of the characteristics of "natural" parents include breastfeeding, babywearing, med-free births, etc. My philosophy has always been "if it sounds right for your family and it's pretty easy to try, then why not?" Of course, I'm very adamant about breastfeeding and natural childbirth, but still, do what's best for your family and your situation.

Now, if I happen to mention these things I do to other parents, or they see me do them, it seems like some moms are compelled to tell me about their own breastfeeding antics, or teaching their baby to sign, or making their own baby food... etc. Don't get me wrong, I love hearing these stories - but why are we (mothers) so competitive? It's as if we're trying to prove that we're better parents than anyone else, simply because we've tried different things.

I find myself guilty of this all the time. I'll judge another mother if I see her making formula for her baby in public. I'll shake my head if I see a mom give her 6-month old French fries and Coke (that's Coke-A-Cola, not the other coke). And if you're so inclined as to smoke with your kids in the car, you'll definitely see me give you a "what the heck?!" kind of look. Yup, I know all us moms think we're the best. Maybe we are, but should we maybe just lay off the other moms for a while?

Maybe instead of paying so much attention to other families, we should try something along the lines of "Zen parenting" - being in the moment, every moment, and enjoying your kids just as they are. As a Christian mom, I don't think I can call myself a "Zen parent," but what could be more in line with God's gift of parenting children? Wouldn't you think He wants us to just enjoy them, teach them to love Him, and enjoy them some more?

Monday, September 10, 2007

Weeping and Sprouting of Teeth

Ethan did it! He beat Abby in the race of getting the first tooth. Although Abby's first tooth actually sprouted years ago, she was eight months old when that happened. Ethan was one day away from turning eight months - the champion! For the record, Avery was only four months old when he laughed and we noticed he had his first little tooth already in place. I don't know, it could have possibly been there when he was born... You know how it is with the second kid.

In other toothy news, I was brushing Avery's teeth the other night and noticed he has half of his second year molars already. Now, we do brush his teeth every night, but when did those get there?

One more mouth item - Abby has been saying really creepy things lately. Out of the blue, she says "I hate America!" What?! Daniel and I know she didn't get that from us, so we ask her where she did, in fact, learn to hate America. She says her teacher told her that... What?! I'm guessing she's really just confusing Ohio and America, since Daniel has been known to say he hates Ohio. She does sometimes say she wants to live in Massachusetts after ranting about America. We've learned that if anything is said in this house, chances are it will be repeated by some kid or another.

However, Abby has also just randomly been saying "I hate." Hmm... She's also now a "good" pirate and all boys are "bad" pirates. My little feminist in the making :o)

What worries me is that Avery repeats everything Abby does. The other day Abby fell down and started crying because she hurt her mouth. So Avery runs over, throws himself down next to her and does the same. When I ignore him, he stands up, climbs on the couch, and falls off. Poor neglected kid.

Thursday, September 6, 2007


This week Abby started preschool. School. Wasn't it just yesterday that she was screaming her pretty little sweaty head off as Daniel held her in his arms, squatting down to the floor over and over again, saying "squeaky, squeaky, squeaky"? Wasn't it just yesterday that I would lay her in her crib after rocking her for an hour, slowly tiptoe out of the room, and then start that all over again once my head hit the pillow?

Where does time with your kids go? Avery is now almost two - yet his first birthday party mess is barely cleaned up. He's mommy's little boy - yet mommy has another little boy now. Avery can sing, climb anywhere, and throws a mean tantrum when you refuse to let him wear three pairs of Thomas underwear at once. But all that is forgotten when he wakes up in the morning and says "Wanna cuddle Mommy," then throws himself on me, on the couch, and just lays there hugging me and snuggling.

Meanwhile, Ethan is learning all the tricks babies learn as they try to escape their mommy's safe, loving, cuddling arms. He's crawling. He's unplugging phones and televisions. Last night he even slept the entire night without needing mommy milk. What's next? Maybe he'll start taking the New York Times or find himself enjoying a nice cigar...? Or maybe walking is next. Or even talking.

Time to have another baby. "Oh Daniel..."

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