Wednesday, October 17, 2007

i've arrived

The day has finally come. I have been a mother for over 7 1/2 years but this evening, I feel I have finally graduated into full parenthood. I expected it much earlier with my severe lack of control most of the time, but today it came; my first "I HATE YOU MOM!!!!"

I told him, "thank you."

He didn't like that.

A moment of silence please . . . . . .

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

in loving memory

We are sad to announce the loss of one of our dear family members. She was a beautiful young lady with a steadfast expression of happiness. Though small in stature, she was the core, the center of our family. We miss her. We love her. Auntie Laura, you were the best.

No, not THAT Auntie Laura. The one that should be in this family photo.
That's right, we have a set of matryoshka dolls, brought back from my brother's mission in Russia, with our likenesses painted on them. He gave a street vender /artist a copy of our family portrait and we have been immortalized on wooden nesting dolls. Laura should be there on the left, next to Darrin. Alas, she has been lost to the abyss of the unknown world of insulation and wiring inside our walls, through this small and unassuming opening:
I caught Spencer trying to stuff Uncle Darrin in the hole. Lucky for him, he was too big. No such luck for Laura. Being the smallest, she fit quite easily into our unused cable outlet. We spent the next couple hours of our life, trying to fish her out. Using various mirrors and jerry-rigged small flashlights, ice cream scoops (jake's idea), bent wires, extendable magnets, and homemade fishing apparatuses, we succeeded . . . in pushing her further down into the insulation and losing her forever.

Auntie Laura, you will be missed. We will always mourn that empty space inside ourselves where you should be. And believe me, justice will be served, Spencer is now banned from all nesting doll fraternization. He will be a registered doll offender under the new Laura's Law that will protect future unsuspecting matryoshkas from a similar fate. Although tragic, our loss will not be in vain.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

return to sender

Before I begin my tale; a little background:

  1. My mom has worked for the same company of about 50 employees, for close to 20 years.
  2. Since she has worked there so long, she carries a bit of authority; particularly over office supplies.
  3. The company was recently bought out by a large, multi-national corporation.
  4. Since the buy-out, all old letterhead/envelopes/anything else with the old name, are obsolete.
  5. Recently, my mom moved in with us.
  6. She brought home some old stationery because she is a kind and thoughtful grandmother and she knew my kids would have a great time coloring, cutting, gluing etc. with this paper that would otherwise have been thrown away (she is a very green grandma).
Ok, now the story. One of my favorite humans is my four-year-old son Elijah. He is at that great preschool age where things are starting to click in his cute little head. You can carry on conversations with him that are usually intelligent and meaningful. He walks on his tippy toes all the time, which I find very endearing, and he is generally a really happy kid. He doesn't share the mood swings that I passed on to my other two sons (whom I love dearly as well, of course, just for different reasons.)

So, one of Elijah's favorite things to do is write and send letters to his friends. And when I say "write letters" I mean, he goes to Nick Jr. and makes some sort of picture with a nick jr. character, with his name on it and prints it out. Then he puts the printed piece into an envelope and sends it to his friend of the day. Now, please note that on there is an "email this to a friend" option when you make these pictures; but my boy likes it old school. Snail mail all the way.

One day I came out of the shower and Elijah had a huge grin on his face. "Mommy, I mailed a letter all by myself!!" He was so proud of himself. We live in a condominium on the back of the lot. Our community mailbox is at the front of the driveway. So it is about a football field's length from our font door to the mailbox. In the mailbox there is a slit large enough to slide in a #10 envelope (the exact size that my mom brought home from work), and it can only be opened by a postal carrier with a key. Once a letter is in, it's IN. As this slit is at the top of the mailbox, just barely within reach of my four-year-old's chubby little fingers, he was doubly impressed with himself. He walked ALL the way down the driveway and got the letter in the slit ALL BY HIMSELF!!!! He was overjoyed. Then, mom opened her big old stupid trap.

"Elijah, did you have a stamp on the letter? Or an address?"

Tears. Instantly.

I had to explain to my sweet little boy, who had just accomplished this major triumph in his short life, that he had done it all wrong. I felt awful.

He wanted to try again. Great. He printed out another picture, we got a new envelope, a stamp, and I wrote the address on it for him. We had a little chat about what letters have to look like before we put them in the mailbox. There must be a stamp in the corner, and an address and his friend's name in the middle. After our little teaching moment, we sauntered down the driveway together to mail his letter correctly.

Now, since there was no way to retrieve the unaddressed letter, my only hope was that Jeanette (our wonderfully kind and friendly mail carrier,who knows my kids, and who shares my name) would notice that the unaddressed letter was in the same kind of envelope as the one with our return address and Elijah's name on it. She could just put it back in our slot and we could fix the whole thing.

It must have been her day off.

Fast forward about five days. I get a call from my mom at work letting me know that I need to tell Elijah that he can't mail any more letters. I explained to her that we had, in fact, already had a conversation about how to mail a letter correctly. Then she told me that her boss had been scurrying around the office all afternoon, trying to figure out who would have sent this:

After making the rounds through the entire staff, he asked my mom. After she noticed the envelope she realized what had happened. He was ticked. And we haven't been able to figure out why. Was it that she had taken a few OBSOLETE envelopes home? Or was it the fact that people in the office were giggling because it was kind of cute? Or did he think that he had the kind of people working for him that would send letters without postage, or an address? We still don't know. But, seriously. Who gets mad about something like that? It didn't cost him any money; except for the time he wasted interrogating the staff when he could have been doing something useful.

Anyway, I felt bad that my mom got in trouble because of my son. But, don't you think its sweet that my son refuses to let go of the beautiful tradition of a note sent in the mail? Sorry again mom, we'll do better next time.

Also, it doesn't matter how new and fancy and energy efficient your washer and dryer are; laundry still sucks.

Monday, October 1, 2007

new goal

I officially announce that on Dec 8 2007 I am going to run a 5k. Now, I have committed myself and I can't back out.