Last Day of School: Surprise Zoo Visit

Today marks the end of school for my son, Tyler. He has finished the third grade and will continue his journey into the fourth grade next year. Too say he is excited is an understatement. summer

Usually every year we finish the last day of school with something fun. This year was no different. We had lunch at an Applebee’s and then spent the afternoon at the nearby zoo.

For $20, it wasn’t a bad afternoon. It threatened to rain, but it never came. Also, for a small zoo, it was a lot of walking involved.

This zoo has been around since I was Tyler’s age. However, in the years, they have revamped it and made it bigger and included more animals. A small train ride has been added, which wasn’t too bad for the $2 per person. A petting zoo with goats were a fan favorite among my kids. We also saw most of the animals. Much to Lily’s disapproval, the kangaroo was hiding. Tyler claims he enjoyed the monkeys the most, but I suspect that had to do with the fact it was one of the few animals who were not snoozing in the afternoon sun.

My favorite had to be the lions. Two lion cubs were born around the same time as Lily, which puts them at about five years old now. It’s fun watching them grow each year. While they are like any cat and were lazying around today, one was showing off his teeth while trying to eat the flies buzzing around his head. I could have sit around watching them all day, but the kids wanted to go-go-go!

11114235_830637516986170_507260590451842298_n

One of the lion cubs. Picture taken Summer 2015.

To finish off his last day of school celebration I am getting him his favorite dinner. Pizza and breadsticks. I’ve been deemed the “best mother ever” today and it feels good.

 

Advertisements

“I’m Countless, Mom.”

“I’m countless, Mom!” My daughter, Lily, just told me this when I asked her to count the number of butterflies on a page in her workbook. The correct answer would have been five, but following directions is something my daughter is not fond of.

She has heard the word before, most likely from me when I was telling someone about countless possibilities of something. And like any five year old, she misinterpreted the word. When I asked her to explain her reasoning on how she is countless, she told me it’s because she is out of numbers and therefore cannot count.

Anything to get out of doing work. I’m usually meet with a yawn and her saying she is too tired to do something. In a way, it’s nice to see a new excuse.

What she doesn’t understand is she is going to be learning countless things throughout her life. She’s already learned countless things so far, like putting on shoes, counting to ten, walking, talking, and so much more. At the age of five, her mind is already learning and has already learned many things. She is a smart little girl. I have a feeling there will be a day when she is the one teaching me things.

So while she may be “countless” right now, she won’t be in the future. Soon she will be able to count all the way to 100, something she currently feels like is impossible. And, like I was with the workbook page, I will be there on the side cheering her on while she learns countless new things.

This post is in response to today’s Daily Prompt: Countless.

Time is Flying

The weather is finally warming up this week. Sweaters and hoodies are being packed away; shorts and tank tops are coming out to play. As I washed, dried, and folded the small collection of summer clothes that I know to still fit my children, I realized they are getting bigger and older.

All parents say that time flies when it comes to their children’s ages. I know my mother says that as she watches me approach my 30th birthday. I say it at the beginning of each month, as we count down the months to my son’s 10th birthday.

Why is it some things seem to draw on longer and take forever, yet the ages of our children just fly by? I don’t want my children to grow up. I enjoy the youth and innocence they project, teaching them the ways of life. Soon are the days neither of them will need me for anything. My days revolve around them; what am I going to do with myself once they are grown and out of the house?

People tell me they are still young and I don’t have to worry about this for several more years. However, I feel like I need to start mentally preparing myself for it because the years seem to fly by. It feels like only yesterday I was holding my son in the hospital when he decided to grace us with his arrival. It feels like only yesterday I was wiping up baby spit up off my daughter’s chin and shirt. Now my son will be entering the double digits, a hop and skip away from being a teenager. My daughter will be going to school everyday. rnyyloa7

I know growing up is a part of a life, and while I am excited to see who they become and what they do in life, it doesn’t mean I have to really like the idea of them being adults. I don’t have to like the idea of them not needing me like they do now.

Time surely does fly when it comes to being a parent. I just have to treasure every moment I can with them now before they enter the real world and do what they are meant to in life.

964558e3b52a7f105bf308e8f54392fb

 

Kids Say the Silliest Things

Untitled

When asking my daughter’s name, she will answer each and every time, “My name is Princess Lily.”

“Mommies eat the babies as seeds, which grow in their tummies, then they poop them out again when they are done growing,” said by my son, Tyler, at the age of four, when I was pregnant with his sister.

“Shoes keep your feet from falling off when you are walking a long time.” Princess Lily’s five year old logic.

“Butterflies are the dead people watching their loved ones.” My son’s logic after my grandmother’s funeral when a butterfly landed on my knee.

“Money grows in our basement over night.” Tyler says this when he asks me for money for a new video game. When asked why he never harvests the money, he tells me it’s because he doesn’t have magical adult eyes like me, so of course, that naturally means he cannot see it growing.

“My mom is a ninja!” Lily loves shouting that one to anyone, family, friends and strangers alike. She believes this because I always know when she has gotten into the cookie jar. It’s of course, not that I can hear her opening it or the chocolate on her lips and cheeks that give it away.

“Sleeping is boring. I don’t want to sleep. I’m not even tired,” said by Lily, seconds before she starts snoring.

Every morning before school, Tyler has to remind me, “School is dumb, Mom. I’m not even learning anything!” I’m not sure how he thinks he knows how to read or do math if he isn’t learning it at school. He’s always telling me something new he (didn’t) learn at school when I pick him up though.

My son likes to point out he has to eat healthy and that he is currently eating healthy, seconds before he stuffs his mouth with a doughnut or cookie. I think his idea of healthy is a little different than the world’s idea of healthy.

“Boogers are thoughts falling from your head. That’s why I have to pick them so I can remember them later.” Lily’s response when I tell her to stop picking her nose.

Tyler has gym every Monday and Friday at school. Every time I pick him up he has to remind me he nearly lost his legs while running around during gym. Because running can make your legs fall off, according to him. But only running while in gym. Running around at the park or during recess are no problem. I think it’s safe to assume he isn’t fond of athletics.

“It’s Just a Phase”

“It’s just a phase.”

I am sure everyone has heard or said that at least once in their life, if not more. Kids seem to go through different phases daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly while they are trying to figure out who they are.

I’ve been through my fair share of phases as well. Only wearing black, only wearing white. Refusing to eat anything that starts with the letter B. Boys are icky, boys are amazing, boys smell, boys are my whole wide world. Suffice to say, I am no longer as boy crazy and find myself somewhere in the middle of the two.

My mother’s personal favorite of my phases when I was convinced pants were trying to eat my butt. I would only agree to wear dresses or skirts and cried if a child size pair of pants were in the same room as me.

These types of phases help a child learn who they are, what they want, what they like and don’t like. I’ve since learned that pants are alright and have no issue wearing them. I still love wearing all black because I find it fitting, but I will throw it other colors finally.

I am thankful to my parents for allowing me to try my different phases, within reason. They did put their foot down over a few things, like when I thought there was no need for clothes at the age of ten. It helped shape me who I am today.

Now as a parent, I hope to help my children too. If they aren’t dangerous or unacceptable, I have no issue letting my son or daughter go through whichever phase they are. “It’s just a phase” after all. They may outgrow it or learn to make it part of who they are. I should not stop them from who they think they are or who they want to be and therefore I see no reason to stop it.

Life is all about phases. Everyone goes through them, everyone experiences them. Everything in life can be seen as a stage: birth, childhood, teens, midlife crisis, death and dying. You cannot stop those phases.

This post is in response to the Daily Prompt: Phase

Last Week of School: No More Early Mondays

So the day is winding down and little eyes are getting droopy. For a Monday, it wasn’t all that bad. I’m a lot like Garfield: I hate Mondays. b3d71491e87259e5dcb4314d1f3086bf

However, it’s the last week of school, therefore the last “real” Monday for the next couple of months. I no longer have to wake up at the crack of dawn to prepare lunches and make sure shirts are on the right way and underwear isn’t on heads. I’ll be able to sleep in a little bit more, not have to worry about getting out of the house at the correct time to beat the morning train that runs the tracks I need to cross.

I have been waiting for this Monday since Spring Break ended. Summer break for the kids are summer breaks for me too.

schoolsoutOf course, that leaves me with wondering what I am going to do to occupy the time of two young children. Sure, things are planned, like a possible vacation, trips to parks and zoo, field trips to museums to keep up with the learning. Play days with friends and late nights trying to catch bugs. But it’s not going to happen every single day.

A whole lot of planning will be involved in my next following Mondays. But as long as I can get my sleep until at least 8am, I’m okay with that. And I will get to sleep until 8am because I am the one making the fun stuff happen.

Sometimes being in charge is okay.

Dreams: Don’t Give Up

Dreams. Everyone has them. Some people dream big, of things like fame, fortune, fairy-tale romances. Other people dream small, of things like a new car, retirement. Everyone has a dream for themselves and what the future may hold.

As a child, I always dreamed of being a famous writer. I dreamed of being a best seller novelist or an award winning journalist. That dream died out in high school when I had my journalist teacher embarrass me in front of the class, calling me and my writing garbage. I tried my best, but my best wasn’t good enough.

It’s amazing how easy someone can crush a person’s dream. Perhaps I just wasn’t strong enough to stomach the criticism that was thrown at me. I always knew I wasn’t the best writer, but I had hoped that the person who was a teacher would teach me a thing or two to help me improve. However, I was wrong and the only thing I learned was to give up on a dream. Silly me, right?

I have always had other dreams, of course, but writing was always number one. Maybe I shouldn’t have given up so easily because of one teacher. He wasn’t even that good of a teacher, but it still hurt that someone would tear me down so quickly and easy. At the age of 15 years old, it must have been to much for someone like me.

I no longer reach for the stars in my dreams; instead, I play it safe and keep it more realistic. Currently, my dream is to get back into school and figure out what to do for my future. Once I accomplish that, then I can dream of other things, slightly bigger things.

Just remember how you talk to a person when discussing their dreams. Rather than crush their dream, support them, and if able, help them fulfill their dreams. You never know what a person is capable of before they are even given the chance to try. Sometimes, they may amaze you.

This post was in response to the Daily Prompt: Dream