Posted in Blogging

We Know the Drill.

I am living on caffeine. Coffee. Diet Pepsi. All day.

Since the kids went back to school last Wednesday– I am having a hard time adjusting to the routine. Last week, I thought I would start writing again. However, my mind was thick with cobwebs from not writing.

I couldn’t think.

Tired. Getting up early overloads my brain. Yes, I am whining a bit. Over summer we were lazy. Getting up later. Some late nights.

It seems like as soon as my head hits the damn pillow, the alarm is buzzing in my ears. And I want to lay there for ten more minutes. Girls need a few extra minutes.

I know if I did I would hear the griping from my husband. Every morning I hear clatter in the kitchen, and everyone is asking where I am. I have my own routine when I wake.

Lay there a minute while anticipating smashing the alarm. Turn it off. Put on a hoodie and socks because I am freezing. Grab the kids lunch. Check the laundry. Then, I am on my way.

The first week of school my husband was on vacation. Nothing good ever comes from this. What made it worse, he had a “man cold.” He laid around in the living room of all places– the “center” of it all. On the couch. With a blanket up to his nose. Whining about how he was feeling. Throwing tissues everywhere– he wasn’t picking them up. Watching stupid “guy” shows.

He was cranky. I couldn’t stand being in the same room. It isn’t quiet when he is home– especially when he is grumpy and finds things to pick arguments about. I choose happiness by staying out of the room.

The children, surprisingly, have adjusted to waking up early. My daughter is a little cranky, and  sassy. Her excuse– “Well, I hate mornings!” (Some people would agree?)

I thought my son would be the one giving me a hard time. But he hasn’t. It’s been my wee one. She is doing better this week.

They seem to like school. Although, my son had an issue to deal with, and he fixed it. Then, my daughter was sick yesterday. Her teacher felt her head saying she was hot, and sent her to the nurse– who did nothing, and sent her back to class.

That makes me mad! Seriously? Keeping an eye on that.

We had a wonderful summer. I don’t think it could have been better. We thoroughly enjoyed it!

I kept them reading over summer so my daughter’s reading level wasn’t low when she started school. My son will be learning Spanish and French this year so he knows what he wants to take next year in high school. We do French at home. I am happy he will have a head start!

I think it will be a great year for them. My fingers are crossed. Less I have to deal with.

Once the routine sets in a bit more, I think we have it all covered. Less sass. More with their chores, and practicing their instruments. And Mommy will be less sleepy too.. Coherent and ready to write!

We know the drill. Here is to another year in the books. My third and eighth grader!

 

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Posted in Life, Writing

Hello Summer!

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We love summer! Summer vacation is fantabulous! Making the most out of every minute.

Going to bed later. Taking walks. Playing ball. Playing games. Watching the sky light up with heat lightning. Playing in the rain. Baking pie.

Running from cicadas…

So far we have visited the library three times. I want Kayla excited to read, and she isn’t. They have a fun summer reading program awarding children prizes for each level they reach.

When she heard prizes, she was in. Each level has two hours of reading time split into twenty-minute intervals. Six levels total. At the end of each level, the child receives a prize.

She receives a prize, likes to read again, and her reading level creeps back up.  Win.

Her reading level dropped a little at the end of the year from not reading. In the middle of last year, she could read on a fifth grade level, which meant she could read bigger books if she wanted. It was easy finding bigger books she was interested in since she wasn’t reading the smaller ones. The problem became getting her to read them, and then she grew anxious with finishing them on time.

When I spoke with her teacher about Kayla’s reading, she said she wasn’t going to push her into reading because she knew she was anxious. She didn’t want to upset her. My daughter loved her second grade teacher. I believe her encouragement and support would have made a huge difference in her reading habits. Instead Kayla gave up and didn’t read for the last two months because she didn’t care about their reading goals.

I am hoping our trips to the library will make reading fun for her again, and help ease the anxiety she feels. Help make her brave enough to want to read those bigger books. She has such a colorful imagination she could cultivate with reading.

She watches British Castles with me on Netflix. I didn’t think it would interest her so much, however, she likes watching the history behind each castle. She likes getting ideas for Minecraft. 

I don’t understand what the kids are doing on the game by watching, but I know it takes loads of imagination— apparently, more than I have! (You can make amazing things!)

Aside from the library and being active, we have blasted appointments out-of-the-way so we can enjoy ourselves. We investivated the need for braces Friday. Unfortunately, Kayla needs them, and we heard about it for the whole day.

“But I need braces!” Was her lament for everything.

Monday summer vacation became “officially official” when we didn’t have to wake up for school, however, we had appointments the last couple days.

Today we slept in!

Stand-by— I will manage to have some-sort of summer schedule. Just not sure what it will look like at this point in the game. It might be a bit erratic at times, but I will be here!

Wishing everyone a lovely Wednesday,

Lynne

Posted in Life

Last Day of School!

Ohhh yeah!

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Children in our district went to school for a whopping two hours this morning. In about an hour, summer break is “official,” I will hear everything when my son comes running from the bus.

We are excited! My daughter and I are home though I hardly can tell she is here. She is anxiously awaiting her orthodontist appointment to tell us whether she needs braces.

I hope everyone has a wonderful summer break!

Lynne

 

Posted in Blogging

Favorites

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“Favorites.”
© 2016 LC

You are a monster!
Deception- a web you spin!
Your eyes like fire!

You are no teacher!
Favorites– A game you play!
Not caring who hurt!

Stand against Bullying!!

 

Posted in Blogging, Life

Happy Memorial Day!

Been making pies, and stuff!

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However, I wanted to wish everyone a safe, wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!

I know Memorial day isn’t about pie. It’s not about just the pie to me!  It’s about remembering our veterans!

I am thankful to those who serve and have served in the armed forces. Their commitment and sacrifice they make for our safety is honorable.

I miss my dad who served in the Navy– Korean War and Bay of Pigs Conflict. No doubt, we would be riding in some parade throwing candy. My kids would have loved that!

Last night, I watched my brother-in-law graduate from high school. Proud moment!  He doesn’t know what he is doing yet, but he will figure it out.

Six of his classmates signed on to work in the military. Of course, I was teary-eyed. It makes me proud, and anxious for them. Proud these high-school students stepped up to  commit to serving our country to protect us, and anxious because of the ongoing conflict around the world.

They had a moment for the veterans. Had everyone stand who had family in the service. And I remembered my dad, I miss him.  Grief isn’t easy.

As Memorial day approaches, I hope we have fun with our family and friends remembering those in uniform— they are the ones who sacrifice so much for us to eat pies and have cookouts so we can have a day off from work/school to have fun!

 

Posted in Life

My Son’s Band Concert

Last night I had the pleasure of listening to the high school and middle school band play. We gathered into a crowded auditorium for the Spring concert. Where hormones were raging, babies were crying, and parents watched the stage with a mix of joy, and anxious frustration.

My son is a percussionist. He plays the drums. I am not bragging, but I think he plays good.

Because he is impulsive and always has to be moving, (A.D.D.) he makes a great drummer. Though he did not win an award on our band trip last year, I thought he did an excellent job.

If we had different judges, he may have won. He said he may have missed one beat the entire time. Cut the kid a break. He was awesome! (A mother can be bias.)

His favorite thing to play is the trap set. What is a trap set you might wonder? It’s okay. I did, too. A trap set is the really big set of drums you have to sit down to play.

All the kids love to play them, and almost fight over them.

I am not a percussionist. I am clueless between them. The ones I know– cowbell and triangle. Bongos? I could rock those!

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When we arrived one of the “PTA Yentas” had no idea we would be there. Her son also plays drums, and is a year below my son.

[Yenta-a woman who is a gossip or busybody.]

When I went to say hello before I could open my mouth I received–“Oh, you aren’t supposed to be here!?!”

“Huh? Well it’s nice to see you too!” I thought to myself. “And you were one of the nicer ones! Guess I was wrong!” 

She was super chatty with me last week helping with the book fair. Telling me about drum lessons, and the band trip.

Apparently, my son told her son we weren’t coming. Because of this confusion, her son would cover his parts. Thus, playing the trap set.

She hoped he would share his music. Because her son didn’t have any? That left me clueless.

One– Why wouldn’t they have enough music? Two–  Why wouldn’t he share? Three– Why cranky with me?? Geez.

In our band, they have “section leaders” telling them what to do. Who plays what. It isn’t a fair deal with who plays what part, and the band director doesn’t get involved. He lets them handle it.

The children in the band the longest have seniority. They know more. So they have less sucky parts.

They don’t cowbell as often. Triangle. Or Tambourine.

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I know it’s not fair being the small guy. No one likes it. Everyone should have a turn.

It is kinda the same way in sports. The suckier players don’t get to play. They are benched. It isn’t fair either.

At least in band they get to do something, I guess?

My kid was that sucky kid playing baseball. He didn’t make the cut. He liked it, but wasn’t good at it. He knows how it feels to be the lowest on the totem pole.

So helps the younger kids in his section. He doesn’t mind. He helped her son when they were going on the band trip, as he considers him one of his friends.

Maybe the reason she was so nice to me last week is because she wanted to know why we didn’t go on the band trip. People do that. Pretend to be nice so they can gather information.

“We missed him! We could have used him!” She crooned.

Well, he was supposed to go on a band trip this year. He didn’t go. Why didn’t he go? Oh, because he has his head too far up his ass. I don’t know what his problem is this year.

No, I didn’t use those exact words, but I was honest. His slipping grades. Video games. Teenager stuff. Because we are dealing with real problems here. My son will overcome them, and be better for it.

So- no, he didn’t earn the trip this year. 

Instead he helped her son learn the parts to go. When it was the weekend for the band to go on the trip, he sulked. He disrespected his father, and ended up grounded.

I didn’t tell her everything. The grounded part. Because I didn’t feel like I had to tell her everything.

I am sure they are talking anyway. I wore my dad’s jean jacket to school that morning. I am sure it was a fashion faux pas. Care I do not.

I tried not to let her attitude stick with me during the concert. It was an excellent show! My daughter moving in her seat. I couldn’t keep still myself.

My son playing the trap set made me proud. I could tell when he messed up a couple of times playing other percussion parts by the look on his face. Even though it wasn’t apparent in the song.

He made it obvious to me putting his hand over his face, and whispering about it. Then, laughing. A mother knows her son.

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It was a long show with both middle and high school band, but I prefer it when they present their concert together. Sometimes they do chorus with the band. I would rather hear the band together.

It makes more sense to me. Band with the band. Rocking out.

Young talented musicians. On the rise. Full of hope. It reminded me of my time in high school.

I felt like the walls confined me, and I couldn’t wait to bust out. Couldn’t wait to make my mark.

I hope they succeed with whatever their plans are after high school, and never give up. Life may become rough sometimes, but it’s how we learn and grow into who we are. Who we are meant to be.

My favorite songs they performed– “The Voodoo Dance” by Elliott Del Borgo with my son on the trap set, “Uma Thurman” Arranged by Michael Brown, and “Star Wars the Force Awakens” by John Williams.

By the end of the night, any weird feelings I had from earlier were gone. Her feelings are her problem. What my kid says and what we do are two separate things. We were going, and he had no say. I wanted to hear him play, and see what he did all year in band.

My husband hates going to school functions. He becomes frustrated with people, and how they act. He appears grumpy. Even if he actually isn’t. Because he is on edge.

He deals with rude people during the day. I guess he expects them, and has a low-tolerance for them since I have a different outlook.

I can understand how he feels. The way people act can discourage a person from attending a school function. Raise your anxiety level. Second guess being there. If you are “worthy enough” to attend.

“Do I look alright?”

I know I felt that way!

In the end, I had just as much of a reason to be there as she did. People don’t realize how much their words can sting another person, and often they don’t care. It is sad, but I walked out of there prouder than ever of my boy.

He may be struggling a little now, but it won’t always be so. It all just needs to click, and once it does he will realize he had what it takes all along. He will quit doubting himself.

He will realize what I know to be true. That he has the intelligence and potential to be something great. He is the only one who is holding himself back.

He doesn’t realize how important he is.

How the world needs someone like him, and until he realizes it he won’t shine. He will blend in like the others. Do as they do. Walk like they walk. Speak as they do.

He will continue to bedazzle me with his drumming skills. Until one day I am watching teary-eyed as he is on stage as a senior– at the trap set. With hopes and dreams to make the world a better place because somewhere along the line it happened to click…

I am just praying it clicks sometime soon. 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in General, Life

A Relaxing Spring Break!

It is Spring Break! I don’t know who was more excited over our vacation from school– the kids? Or me! We kicked off our first official day on Monday with sleeping in followed up with Mom’s AWESOME pancakes.

We are relaxing today. Though we have been getting things done we put off, too! My daughter and I went shopping and for a haircut, and it was fun! Now we look like ourselves, again! It is amazing how good a haircut makes a person feel.

My son is in his room. Video gaming. As per his usual. He should have come from the womb with a controller in his hand. 

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Teenage boys, right?

My son has A.D.H.D. and I believe gaming is making it worse. The video games don’t cause it though it can make his attention faulty.

It’s all he wants to do. He will half-ass anything just so he can play games, again. If we want to spend time with him. Forget it!

Remind myself, “Who is the parent, again! Me? Right!”

But when this happens there is a big explosion. Normal for teenagers, certainly. But it is bad.

“Video games are MY life.” He says, “I need them to be a video game developer. I have to play them all the time. I need them.”

I remind myself this sounds very much like an addiction. I think  of someone else I knew with an addiction.. his biological dad. Then, I cringe hoping he didn’t somehow inherit his addictive personality. Pain pills, marijuana, booze…

I tell him later that his thinking isn’t sound. After he calms down and is done bawling his eyes out like a two-year old because he escalates the situation which exacerbates the later punishment. Placing blame on anyone but himself.

His dad tells him, “You have to write code to develop video games. A whole lot goes into making video games than playing them.” His dad would know. He does have a college degree in the stuff.

But still, he clings to this hope playing them will make him a game developer. Even though, his grades are slipping, he isn’t turning things in because he “can’t find them,” and he is getting into some trouble on the bus.

But he doesn’t see it our way. Teenagers seldom do when they want it their way. But for my kid, he likes to invent his own version of truths and adapt them as reality.

I didn’t see the problem with video games before. We have carefully monitored his games. He still doesn’t play some of the games the other boys play. I thought letting him play was okay as it was his hobby, and something all boys his age like to do.

But I see the problem now.

He uses them as a crutch. An escape from life. He tells me, “You don’t understand what I go through in school so I stay in my room because I don’t want to talk about it.”

So he shuts everyone out. I have had countless talks with him about how relationships are more important than playing games, and how if he isn’t careful life is going to pass him by.  But it doesn’t sink in. I know social skills aren’t his thing– it’s the A.D.H.D. However, we are his family, and I’m tired of it.

I have talked to my husband about taking the games away. Taking the controllers out. How he should only play for a limited amount of time so he should be spending time with us. He agreed. But he is still acting in that sneaky teenager kinda way.

Before break happened, a fight erupted with a girl he really likes, who happens to ride his bus. He had been smacking another kid upside the back of the head because he was hitting her. He was so gallantly defending her “honor.” (Even though he later told me she was suspended for fighting.) They had a fight in band over Lord knows what right before that she gave him her number. It was the wrong number.

So he came home upset. Not wanting to leave the house. Or go to dinner. Or do anything but game.

I HATE puberty!!

I didn’t do this video game crap 24/7. I had a game system, too, when the Nintendo came out. My dad and sister played in secret until Christmas when I opened it. It was awesome,  but it wasn’t glued to me. I didn’t eat, sleep, “Duck Hunt!” Now Mario Bros…

Point is, I wasn’t stuck in my room. When we were kids, we played outside. Or sat in our rooms and listened to music. I wrote. I went to my friend’s houses. We rode bikes. We didn’t play games all the time. It was boring to sit inside all the time.

Maybe because I was a girl? My daughter isn’t like that. She has other things she likes to do. She is very artsy. She loves to paint, write, and make things in her room. She doesn’t have A.D.H.D. So they are different in that way.

She is playing them now as I am writing this post. She is waiting for me. Now I stink at them. It’s my age. When we were younger, we were so much better at playing them. Guess it is because we had more time. Now I have to remind myself which screen I am on, and I gripe about how much harder it is!

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Maybe more children are playing games now. Only a parent can set limits and decide what is best for their children. We, as parents, know what our children can handle. When we were younger, we took our butts outside. That is where your imagination is. Not in a video game. Educational games, however, can be helpful.

Even though the gaming thing is bothering me and the fact my son is keeping secrets from me– possibly– is totally pissing me off, I am not going to let it ruin Spring Break. I think it could be time for some counseling. He doesn’t want to talk– fine. We will do this my way. He won’t like it, but that is too bad. I am the parent, here. Not him.

A couple of good articles about A.D.H.D and gaming–

Do Video Games Cause A.D.H.D

A.D.H.D and Video Games

 

Posted in Writing

Goals for Fall.

Yesterday was the first day of school. The kids were happy about it. Surprisingly, I was not.How did this happen?

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If I hop in my time machine and set it back a year or two, the first day of the school was magical for me. The summer was long, and they drove me crazy. I couldn’t wait for peace and quiet. To reclaim my sanity.

I don’t know how I wasn’t bald from pulling out my hair by the time they went back…

This year, it is like we blinked. Summer is over. No one wanted to go back.

Now I miss them. Not that I didn’t miss them before. They are actually less of a pain in the butt now, we have fun! We had fun before, but now they are a bit older.

Kids are so much fun. No matter what age they are. I love children. But as they grow older, more independent and mature, I think they cooperate more.

Even though my son is a teenager now… Thirteen. Everything is changing for him. Feeling so many things at the same time, and it is new and exciting growing up, learning new things, noticing the world around you in ways you haven’t before– yet so very weird.

My daughter has a little ways to go before she reaches that age. Thank God! She is eight. Tells me she promises not to be anything like her brother who wants to stay in his room 24/7, and be moody. Right!

I always thought girls were worse. That was until I had a boy in middle school last year. Now I am not sure.

With the children in school now, I can get back to my routine in the morning with writing. This excites me! I was up early all summer, but didn’t quite get to do what I wanted with my writing. Which was disappointing.

I started two new writing classes. I polished up my health blog– which will be moving to my own website– I am ecstatic over that! Full of ideas with what I what to do there.

Now I have to fix up this one, and get moving again.  Those are my plans for fall. Fix this baby up, get my website moving, work on my website, and get writing every day.

I did write this morning while sitting on my porch drinking coffee listening to music. A beautiful morning to sit outside with the wind blowing gently, and the birds keeping me company. The leaves are already starting to fall. Can’t believe it.