Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Renie's Birthday

Let me start by saying that with three girls in the family, this little doll cake set has been a sound investment.

So back at the end of July, Renie turned four. My little firecracker girl has definitely made the transition from toddler to preschooler. This is one headstrong, independent, bold little girl. She is not easily intimidated or pushed around. She doesn't care who it is, she will set her jaw and stand her ground. Not necessarily an ideal trait in a 4 year old, but I'm banking on it being an asset one day. As long as I can teach her what is worth standing her ground for, and she doesn't use it for evil. Renie is beautiful and funny and her strong personality demands attention and holds a huge place in our family. (Typical middle child, right?)

Renie's birthday dinner was homemade pizza, a popular choice with the whole family.

Blowing out the candles was a little tricky because her thoughtless mother spread them around the cake.

I was babysitting that day as I made the cake. Normally, when I'm making a birthday cake, I like to have the house to myself so i can concentrate and create. Well, with my kids PLUS two extras, that didn't happen. Instead I was here with 6 kids ages 2,3,4,5,7,8. Carson, the three year old, asked me AT LEAST 6 million times if it was time to eat the mermaid cake. Every time I turned my back, some kid was trying to stick their fingers in the cake or swipe some of my fondant. But, other than a few fingerprints in the frosting, she survived until the proper time for consumption.

Gift time:

So the scooter is from her father and I. Kind of. My neighbor brought over this scooter thinking that maybe Renie would like it. It was still in the box. And it was a week before her birthday. I said thank you and put it up on a shelf in our closet, then wrapped it up and gave it to her for her birthday. Is that wicked of me?

A mermaid barbie from her siblings

Giving the scooter a test run on the hill out front.

Happy Birthday my beautiful little handful! You have challenged me in new ways as a mother, but I love your powerful little personality. Thanks for being ours and making us laugh.

Henry Villas Zoo

Hey look! I found a post that I started and then never finished. I'm still not going to finish it, I'm just going to post all the pictures from a trip to our free zoo here in Madison.

The Thought of Blogging Makes Me Tired...

Once again I am so far behind in blogging that it seems overwhelming to try to catch up. I'll probably go back and dig up some highlights from our summer, but right now I feel completely worn down by the summer and the stresses of parenting. I am anxiously awaiting the beginning of school on September 1st. Normally I'm sad to send the kids back and I dread the evenings of homework and the mornings of clothing fights and tired kids. This year, however, the summer has flown by in a very unstructured and chaotic manner. I feel like I've never really gotten a handle on it. As a direct result, I feel like my kids are out of control and we all need the routine and structure that the school year brings. We are happily cancelling our cable, which we really should have done at the first sign of spring, and I'm so looking forward to that distraction removed from our lives. I am also hoping that I can get a handle on my own emotions as things settle a bit. As the summer has developed into constant bickering and disobedience I've found myself way too ready with a barking reprimand or a spank on the butt. I feel like all manner of control of the situation has been stolen from me and all I can do is run around yelling at everyone in some lame attempt to stop the insanity. Of course, all I'm doing is adding to the insanity, so we continue in the vicious cycle. I am painfully aware that I will never be a homeschooler, that I need the opportunity to have some time away from my kids, calm my soul, and prepare myself to serve them better upon their return. It's funny, I always envisioned myself as being a very capable and effective mother, but find the daily grind of it is more trying for me than I ever anticipated. But never fear, I do find joy in motherhood and I love my children infinitely, I just think it's time to regroup. So I'm making my lists of changes I want to see in myself, the children, our routine, and our family in general. We'll head into September with calmer souls and a lesson learned to be better organized when summer is upon us next year.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Just an update...

For anyone who's following along. I ran 3 (yes, three), miles on Saturday. This may not sound like much to you folks who run a lot, but it was a huge milestone for me. You see, once upon a time, there was this girl who was pretty athletic. She played soccer and basketball, was pretty good at any sport she tried her hand at, and was generally in really good shape. But even at the height of her physical fitness, she only ran 2 miles. Well, the years passed, she gave birth to five kids, developed a DVT in her leg, and suddenly discovered her body didn't quite respond the way it once had. So after all this, a goal of running 3 miles seemed daunting. But with some time, dedication, and perseverance, the goal was attained. Yes, you clever readers, that girl is me. For the first time in my life, I have run three miles. And I still have about 2 months before the race. Maybe I should train for the 10K? (Here is where I should mention that my foot on my left (DVT) leg was basically numb from lack of circulation during most of the last mile. So maybe a 10K is a bit much. But if this pins and needles problem resolves...)