Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

Iron Man

22 Aug

Koren has been after me for a few days to play catch with him, and we finally got the chance to play for a bit.  After he had caught his 14th toss in a row, I asked him if he’s going to be a baseball player when he grows up.

“Yes.  Well, actually I’m going to be Iron Man when I grow up.  Iron Man the Baseball Player.”

He has a group of friends at school who have formed the preschool version of a superhero club.  They have each picked out their alter ego, and play superhero reenactments on the playground, saving “people that need to be saved.”  Koren is usually Iron Man, but he sometimes opts for Captain America.  Occasionally, their playground rescues even attract an audience, or so I’m told.

Sometimes when I pick him up, he’ll wave goodbye to his fellow superheros:  “Bye Batman, bye Thor!”

Raising a super hero is a pretty daunting responsibility.  I hope I’m up for the task.

Comments Off on Iron Man

Posted in Koren, Parenting


Called On the Carpet

17 Aug

One of the challenges of parenting is when it becomes difficult to tell who the parent actually is. This conversation took place in the car as we were coming home from work/school…

Me: Oh, that stupid truck.
Koren: Mama, why did you call that truck stupid?
Me: That wasn’t very nice of me, was it.  I said that because I was frustrated that those people have been blocking our driveway all day and now I have to drive backwards out of the alleyway and go around the long way just so we can get home.
Me:  But I guess that doesn’t mean that they’re stupid.
Koren: No.  Because we never call anybody stupid.
Me: You’re right.  I shouldn’t have said that.
Koren: Mama, you made a sad choice.
Me:  I suppose I did.  I’m sorry for my sad choice.
Koren: That’s ok.


Dang.   I think I have rug burns from that one.

Comments Off on Called On the Carpet

Posted in Kid Quotes, Koren, Parenting



16 Aug

Tuesday, Xander’s sister (B) asked their mom (M) why there was a big crack beside the house.  M replied that it was too dry and hot outside, and that we needed rain.  B said, “I’m going to ask my brother to make it rain for us so our house doesn’t crack.”

A short while later, it started raining.  It rained for HOURS.

At bedtime, Koren was struggling with the thunder and lightening.  I would comfort him in all the ways I knew how, but he kept coming out of his room saying he was afraid.  Eventually, I told him the story of B asking Xander for rain.

He slept after that.  No more problems.  At one point, he even said, “Mama, I like the rain.”

“I like the rain too, Bud.”

Comments Off on Rain

Posted in Koren, Parenting, Prayers



15 Aug

This is what happens when I take too long with the camera:

And this is what happens when we tell her she has to try something new at meal time:



15 May

Kaelin mentioned to me yesterday that her right eye had suddenly gotten blurry during school, and that the blurriness never went away. I told her to let me know if it was still bothering her this morning. It was. We did the “finger” test and she was unable to tell how many fingers we were holding up from four feet away.

So Jens took off work this morning and rushed her to the eye doctor. I sent out prayer requests and sat anxiously by the phone awaiting any news. They were there for two hours, running various tests.

The verdict? My daughter is a faker. She sees 20/20, but has decided that glasses are cool and that she wants some, so this was the best way to get them.

The eye doctor was able to determine that Kaelin’s vision issues were made up when he asked her to tell him if he was holding up one finger or two. He became suspicious when, with a 50/50 chance of getting it right, she got it wrong 20 times in a row. So he tricked her into thinking he was having her look through prescription lenses, when really it was just regular glass. Suddenly, her vision became perfect!

Apparently this is not an uncommon deception at this age.  The optometrist’s own daughter, who is Kaelin’s age, pulled this same maneuver not long ago – so I guess he knew what to look for.

Sigh. At least the eye doctor is still smarter than my kid. Not sure I can say the same about her parents.

But that doctor appointment? Is totally coming out of her allowance.


Mother’s Day

13 May

Happy Mothers Day to all the special mothers in my life!

Mother’s Day started a day early for me this year.  The kids couldn’t wait an extra day, and presented me with a box full of handmade cards and pictures first thing in the morning on Saturday.  They were so excited to show me their handiwork, and I loved every minute of it.  I am so glad that I just got my new scanner, so I can preserve these little memories.

In my mind, the first few years of Mother’s Day celebrations are kind of just formalities because it’s really the spouse who finds gifts or coaches the little ones through making cards.  Once the kids start doing it voluntarily, it gets a lot more meaningful.  This is the first year that they both really got the concept of Mother’s Day, and put a lot of effort into giving me something special.  As a kid, I always thought handmade Mothers Day gifts were kind of lame.  Now, they’re the best thing in the world.

Koren is convinced the day is called “Happy Mothers Day.”

Because that’s the day we try really hard to make our mothers happy.

I like the way he thinks.

I did have a moment of Mom Panic today, when I suddenly realized that Kaelin had been playing by herself for quite a while.  I asked her where Koren was, and she didn’t know.  So I ran all over the house calling for him, and rushed to the back yard to be sure he hadn’t gotten locked outside during their previous play time (has happened before), but no Koren.  Eventually, I found him:


Note to Self

22 Feb

If you have kids who are prone to rummaging through the refrigerator when you’re not looking, it’s a good idea to clean out said fridge from time to time.  Kaelin didn’t sleep well last night and missed half of school today due to a stomach ache.

Actually, I think we’re pretty fortunate that she only had a stomach ache.

I think those black-eyed peas were from New Years.

Comments Off on Note to Self

Posted in Food, Health...or Lack Thereof, Kaelin, Parenting


The Gift

20 Nov

We talked about it again this morning.  Today is the day to turn in the OCC boxes, and Kaelin was still having a hard time letting go of the toy she had somehow developed an extreme attachment to, despite the fact that it had never belonged to her.

When yesterday’s blog post hit my Facebook account, I received a few comments from friends that were very insightful.  One in particular struck a chord with me (Paige, I hope you don’t mind if I quote you):

I remember various didactic stories meant to instill generosity that simply didn’t impress me. I *do* remember that the Christmas scenes in the Little House on the Prairie books, and the uncomfortable plots about Nellie Oleson’s nicer doll (and nicer things in general) did make an impression. But I’m also fairly certain that I was very careful not to show it, because I was sick unto death of didactic stories.

In short: even if it doesn’t show, it doesn’t mean you’re not making the right impression.

It immediately reminded me of several instances growing up in which I had done something very foolish and my mom called me out on it.  I don’t have the slightest memory of what I did to deserve the verbal lashing, but the thing I do remember is refusing to give her the repentant reaction I knew she was hoping to get from me while she chastised me.  (Remember the part where my daughter is stubborn?  Guess who she got it from.)  Instead, I acted as though her words were bouncing off a brick wall because I knew it would only make her angrier.  It totally worked.

I began to wonder if that was what went on yesterday – if, instead of rejecting my message, Kaelin was rejecting my negative judgement of her.  So as I talked with her this morning, I was careful to come from a different angle.

She started to tear up again at the idea of giving the toy dog away.  We talked about sacrificial giving.  We talked about how God wants us to be cheerful givers and how the gifts he appreciates the most are the ones we find difficult to give.  We talked about the idea that if you allow your own selfish wants to be more important than making others happy, then the gift is no longer truly a gift – it’s just leftovers.

She seemed to be somewhat more receptive, but each segment of conversation kept coming back around to “but will I get one of these dogs too?”  She got a little frustrated when I refused to answer that question because I found it irrelevant to the task at hand.  We talked about how this gift for children in another country is completely unrelated to what she may or may not get for Christmas.  I did tell her that the dog cost all of $5 so if she was really that into it, she should save up her allowance.  I’m not sure if that was a mistake or not, but she immediately backed off of it.

We talked about how important it is to be a person who thinks of others instead of self, and how nearly all of the world’s problems are caused by people who can’t get past themselves.  People who let their own desires be more important than the needs and happiness of others.  I told her how desperately I want to be sure she doesn’t become one of those people.

We talked about what a good girl she is – that she gets good grades, she minds, she rarely misbehaves, she’s polite, she’s smart, and that I was very proud of her for each of those reasons… but that having a heart for others is more important than all of those things.

When we arrived at church, I handed her the box to bring inside.  She asked if the dog she wanted was in this box and I told her yes.  She was silent for a minute as we headed toward the building.  Then she looked up at me and smiled.

“Mama?  I really hope I’ll be able to buy one of these dogs with my money.  But even if I can’t, I’m ok with it.”