Friday, February 25, 2011

The Amazing Day

     Today was a great day for Ian. It started bright and early this morning over breakfast, at 7:45.
     "Hey, Mom? You need to come to the school at 8:30."
     "Your program starts at 10:30, Ian."
     "I know. But I'm getting the award at 8:30."
     "Is this the Chart Your Course award?"
     This presented me with a few challenges. The teacher always sends a note home on Monday letting parents know that their student has been selected to be the recipient of this monthly award. Ian never brought home a note so this was the first I'd heard about it. Luckily I'd already showered, but my hair was dripping and I needed to help my sister get ready for a doctor appointment. Somehow, I made it in time.
    The awards ceremony took place in the school library. Principal Jameson read Ian's name and then gave a description of his merits. "Ian is becoming a faster reader! The more he practices and tries his hardest, the smarter he grows." They shook hands and Ian was given his certificate and special pin. After all the kids received their awards, it was picture time. The principal said, "Hold your award below your chin and say KIWI!" Narurally, Ian had to hold his award over his face so that only his eyes were showing. I tried to hug my boy when it was all over, but he ran faster than I could grab him, hollering over his shoulder, "See ya!"
     At 10:30 I was back at the school for the "Everyone Smile's in the Same Language" program. I was a bit worried about Ian's participation in the program. Last year's wasn't so great. But to my surprise he did all right. He sang the chorus on a few songs, did hand motions and body waving when appropriate, and even performed a separate song with a small group of children. When the program was over, he stood up and did "peace out" to everyone.
     It's customary, on program days, for parents to check their kids out early and take them home. I thought it would be a nice time for Ian and I to have lunch together. On the way home he asked, "Is Dad home yet?"
     "No, honey. It's just you and me for several hours."
     "Several hours?"
     "I want to go back to school."
     Even though it was a pretty severe dig to my ego, I still laughed out loud.
     Every ten minutes, for the next three hours, Ian would ask, "What time is it?"
     He was counting down until 2:00. Because that's when his dad would be home. And two weeks ago, Dad promised Ian a trip to Game Stop for a new game. Today was payday and therefore, Game Day.
Too pass the time, we played LIFE. I landed on a spot that said, "Sue another player." When Ian heard this he replied, rather vehemently, "Don't take my kids. But you can have my wife!"
     I love my boy.
     Scott arrived home at 2:00 on the dot, as promised. I've never seen Ian grab shoes and a jacket so fast. He was like a mini-tornado, tearing around the family room and out the door. They were only gone for twenty minutes. But to Ian, that is equivalent to a million dollars.
     A major award, a succesful program, home early, lunch at McDonalds (even if it was with Mom), time with Dad, and a new game--all equal a very happy boy. 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

My Well of Happiness

     For those of you that don't know, one of my sisters suffered a stroke at the beginning of January. The past few weeks have been very difficult and emotional. For the full details, you are welcome to read my other blog. There is a link on the right hand side of the page towards the top.
     In times of trial, I tend to appreciate small things. Things that might go unnoticed at normal times. Things like... warm socks fresh from the dryer, indoor plumbing, my crock pot, a smile from a stranger, and the feel of a little warm hand in mine. 
     My children are a well of joy to me. When I feel depleted, I just have to dip in my bucket and draw forth a bit of their happiness. Here are a few things that quench my thirst.

     Ian's infectious laugh
Zackary's imagination
Tawni & Beka laughing together as only sister's can
My daughters' blonde moments
Reading a bedtime story to Ian
Hearing Zack serenade an invisible audience in the shower
Beka's hugs
Tawni's testimony
Zack's compassion
Ian tolerating a hug from me
Watching Beka play games with Ian
Watching TV with my girls
Playing Battleship with Zack
Playing Chess with Tawni
Watching Ian do the dishes-
Watching Zack help Ian with the dishes-
Watching the water fight as Zack and Ian do dishes together-
Watching my children mop the floor
The smiles on my older kids faces as they watch Ian playing
Bedtime hugs and kisses
Listening to dreams and comforting heartaches

     As I've watched my kids over the past several weeks, I've come to appreciate them more and more. Today, something about Ian just made me feel warm inside. His sweet face, his smile and laugh, his innocence... I'm not sure what it was really. But today I felt, and still feel, so blessed to be his mom. When I see my kids playing, laughing, and working together, I am filled with joy and every trial becomes bearable, because I have them by my side.