Monthly Archives: April 2011

I remember being her.

So my oldest is getting to the point where I remember being her age. Not in great detail, but I remember having my first crush on a boy named Russell in 3rd grade. And I remember when my 3rd grade teacher would only call me “Kathy” because she didn’t agree that “Katie” was a suitable nickname for “Kathleen.”  And the whole experience of my mom losing my baby brother just a few hours after he was born when she went into pre-term labor (and that same teacher telling my whole class incorrectly that the baby was  still-born).

On a brighter note, today, I had another flashback. My oldest has decided she takes showers now. Only showers. No more baths. And today, she turned the radio station to Radio Disney and blasted it so loud that I could hear the songs word for word downstairs without straining. Of course she had it this loud in order for HER to hear the words while in the shower.

THIS? This I remember so vividly.

It’s crazy that I have a child old enough that I remember being her.

She doesn’t have any crushes yet. (Her younger sister apparently is taking that one on at the ripe age of FOUR, telling us “that {love} movie made me think of how much I like Adam from my school.” giggle, giggle.)

But she’ll remember some of these days 25 years from now. Makes me want to make them the best for her.

I shaved my legs for the first time (with my mom’s razor without asking) in 4th grade. That’s NEXT YEAR for my oldest! I’m hiding my razor tomorrow.

Where is the love?

Tonight as I was putting your little sister to bed, she started crying and said she couldn’t stand you. When I asked her why, she began telling me how sad she was because you are so mean to her. She said, through tears and sincere hurting, “This one time, Alaina was so nice to me and it made me so happy. And then she changed her mood.” She told me how horribly it hurts her feelings when you are so mean to her. Over and over again.

I cried with her.

And then I came to your room and told you how sad she was because of how you treat her. Your response? “She just annoys me so much.”

We talk about the way you treat Cameran a lot. We have almost daily conversations about the appropriate ways to treat others, especially your sister. How she looks up to you. How you are to be a role model for her. How God wants you to love her.

You are a selfish child. I’m not saying that to be mean, but to point to where I think your attitude towards your sister begins. I’m not sure if it’s because you were almost 4 years old when Cami was born or if it’s just inherently part of who you are. I think it’s both.

You were not raised to think only of yourself. And it’s a lesson we’ve struggled to teach you for years. It seems as if you are the most selfish around those who love you the most. Your teachers do not see it at school. We don’t see this behavior with your friends. It’s like it’s all reserved for your sister.

It is so heartbreaking to watch you hurt her. You are seldom changed by punishment, talks, prayer. It may last for a day, but then you go back to your old ways. I keep praying that you will love her well. That God will change your heart towards your only sister.

I want so much for you two to be close as you get older. You will need each other. Daddy and I will fail you. And when we don’t, you will think we did anyway because you’ll be a teenager. I’m prepared for that.

But I’m not prepared for you to go through it alone. It will be so much easier to have Cami by your side to lean on.

And then there’s Luke. You love him so dearly right now. And he watches you so intently with a constant smile. It is apparent he loves you, even at 5 months old. But I worry that you’ll begin treating him as you do Cami once he’s older.

I will keep praying for your heart. That it will soften toward Cameran and that it will remain loving toward Lucas. I know God has amazing things planned for you. I see it in your eyes. That sparkle and love for life. I pray you will share it with Cameran one day. Sooner rather than later. And that you will truly love her as only a sister can.

Cathartic. And weird.

My cousin emailed me the other day and told me that she’s going to start her own blog. She wrote “It’s cathartic isn’t it? weird though to think that you are openly sharing your thoughts with the public.”

Funny that she mentioned it because I was thinking about it just the night before.

To tell you the truth, I’m kinda weirded out by this whole blogging thing.  I mean, I put my thoughts out here and you read them. You have opinions based on what you have read. And then I see you in person. (Because I’m guessing that most of you are people I know and see regularly.)

Writing is cathartic for me. I don’t write about everything. There are some things that are better left to words between friends, like family issues or your sex life (or lack there of). But putting thoughts into words is good for my head, so they don’t keep spinning inside and festering into bigger issues than they are.

Here’s the problem: I’m not real current on blogging “manners” per se. Do we talk about things we write about when we see each other? Because it’s awkward to me when I see you and I don’t know if I can talk to you about what I wrote (or what you wrote).

I hope so. For me, writing is just the start. I want to have conversations, written and verbal. I want my written thoughts to spark opinions and ideas that need to be fleshed out. I want you to write about what you’ve read and experienced. But I also want you to verbally talk about it too.

So the next time you read my blog, don’t be scared to leave a comment. (You can even do it anonymously.)

And if you want, write more about it on your own blog. (I won’t think you “stole” my idea.) Then let me know so I can read it.

And further, if it’s something you keep thinking about, talk to me about it the next time we see each other. Most of the time it’s hard for me to open up unless prompted. (Remember this post?)  But if you prompt, I’m willing to try.

I’ll prompt you too. If you give me permission. :)

Holy cost of private school, Batman!

As I’ve mentioned before, my oldest goes to a private school. We’ve only had to worry about tuition for one so far and I was working 20+ hours a week until November, so the cost was feasible. And in my mind, COMPLETELY WORTH IT. The school is amazing. And I love it.

Well, now #2 will be heading to kindergarten in the fall. And I’m down to working about 8-12 hours a MONTH since Baby Jedi was born. This makes for a bit of financial stress on this household(read: HOLY CRAP!).

And by a bit, I mean I have to find (at a minimum) $600 a month of extra income/slashed expenses by August. And that’s just to break even. It doesn’t even include what we owe for property taxes or insurance or savings for a vacation. Nada. Our tax refund funded those items this year thankfully. (But it ain’t gonna fund it next year I bet.)

What it comes down to is this: Is it worth it? And if so, do I trust that God will provide, some how, some way?

I think the first answer is yes. The second question: easier said than done for this control freak.

So of course, I’ve started the search to fund the gap (just in case God doesn’t provide, you know, because that’s who I am). I sent an email to 5 individuals (who know me well and are well networked) in an attempt to find some extra work.  And we’re working to identify expenses/savings that we could decrease (like retirement, college, entertainment). Also, the husband is contemplating finding a new job, in the for-profit realm of accounting, which would most likely pay more, but would come with seeing us less.

Dang that school. For not being free. And for being so darn good for #1 that we can’t imagine life anywhere else.

But we have to be realistic. Right now this choice we’ve made isn’t financially sustainable. So I think we’ll commit to dipping into our savings account and adjusting our income/expenses for the upcoming school year. But you’d better believe I’ll be spending the next year determining if it’s really worth it and what my public school options are in case it’s not.

Show me the way, God. I’m up for the challenge. (I think.)