Monday, September 22, 2014

Sibling love

(I started this post over a week ago. Better late than never.)

The first thing I heard this morning was the sound of contention. I apologize for the over share, but I was accosted by two upset children while I was using the bathroom.

"Mom!!" Henry whined. "Lottie woke me..." before he can finish his accusation, Lottie pipes up. Loudly.

"No! I didn't!" Turning to face her, Henry angrily says...

"Yes you did!"

"Whoa. Whoa. Whoa!" I interrupt. My chief concern is that their squabbling will wake the baby. I give Henry a look that says: Continue. He softens his voice.

"Mom. Lottie woke me up this morning." He is seriously upset right now. "I was still sleeping and she wouldn't stop talking until I was awake!" He is crying. Lottie adjusts the volume of her voice to "super loud."

"No!" *foot stomp*  "Mom!!!" I shush her once more. My supply of patience is suddenly very low. Not wanting to add to the contention, I try my best to be calm-ish.

"Henry. Guess what? It's time for you to be awake anyway. It's time to get ready for school." Before he feels like I'm simply letting Lottie off the hook, I look at her and add:

"Lottie, we talked about this yesterday. When you wake up, come find Mommy. It's bad manners to wake up Henry if his body still needs to sleep." And with that I kick them out of the bathroom because seriously, no Mother likes to parent while on the potty. 

I share this to illustrate the point that my kids argue. They push each others buttons. Eliza teases Henry constantly about a cute girl he has a crush on. Lottie will hold tight to a toy despite Forrest's massive desire to have said toy. Henry will kick Lottie off her wiggle cart whenever he wants a turn. I play the part of "referee" daily. Sometimes I'm fair and calm in my dealings, but sometimes I lose my cool because I've had enough! I'm seriously trying to be better because kids are kids.

Anyway, rather than extend the focus on the contention, I've caught my kids loving each other in sweet ways lately. It fills my heart with joy and at the end of the blogging day, these memories are the ones that deserve to be remembered.

The Pokemon Business Deal

Apparently, Pokemon cards are all the rage. I am a total novice when it comes to Pokemon cards. All I know is that they are A) expensive and B) kids have Pokemon 'battles' where they each play a card and if you win, I think you acquire the losing card from your friend? Whether or not it's permanent, I'm not sure. A few of Henry's friends "gifted" him a few of their (least desired) cards to be nice. Henry was really proud to have a couple card to his name. Eliza caught wind of his interest and decided, on her own, to help him out. Eliza earns suckers in her class for giving correct answers, etc. On a normal day, she'll earn the max amount of suckers (two). She'll keep one for herself and then trade her second sucker with boys her age in exchange for a Pokemon card. After school, she gives the card to Henry. His humble stack of Pokemon cards has grown quite a bit since Eliza began doing this for him. Very sweet.

Standing in the E line

If I understand the scene correctly, Henry's class was in the hallway of the school learning about graphing. They were asked to stand behind their favorite letter in the alphabet. As a class, they'd graph their results. Eliza walked by as this was happening and noticed that Henry was the only person standing behind the letter "E." I listened in as she questioned him about this after school.

Henry explained, "I chose the letter E as my favorite because it reminds me of you." I about died, right then. "And I was the only one who picked it." This made her feel very special.

The Umbrella Saga

A few years ago, I bought Eliza and Henry darling umbrellas. Eliza's is designed to look like a butterfly and Henry's looks like a frog. I recently learned that Eliza is super embarrassed by her umbrella. It's "baby-ish." This makes me sad. She'd prefer to walk in the rain than have to use it on the playground. Earlier this week, it was raining and I told her that it was important to me that she stay dry on the playground. Lottie could see how this conversation would soon evolve into an argument so she interjected.

"Eliza can take my umbrella." It's pink with flowers and far more acceptable (in Eliza's eyes) than her butterfly umbrella. You could see the instant relief on Eliza's face. She was thrilled and made sure Lottie knew it.
Third grade.
That's the answer to the questions:
"When will my child be "too cool" for their darling umbrella?"and
"When will my child be embarrassed to be Elsa for Halloween
...even though she really, really wants to be Elsa?"

... at least that's the way it is for Eliza. 
So sad!

The funny Flegals at Uintah's Family Fun fair...
due to the rain, the fair was held inside which made pictures difficult to take
We look forward to this back to school tradition each year.

Smaller observations

When Forrest wakes up and I'm still in the process of getting myself ready, the older kids will go "entertain him" while he awaits my rescue from the crib. The kids are darling with him and it eases my mom guilt for putting him off for a few minutes.


Earlier in the summer, when three year old Lottie was still required to take a daily nap, she'd "borrow" Henry's Simba lion and sleep with him. At bedtime, Henry fussed that she was taking Simba without permission. I suppose I'm the guiltiest of parties as I never objected when she'd take him from Henry's bed. From my {selfish} viewpoint, Henry was taking "one for the team." Simba made nap time smooth sailing for me. I don't know what changed, or when, but for the past couple of weeks, Lottie has been sleeping with Simba every night. It seems that Henry has given her his full blessing as I've witnessed him find Simba at bedtime and took the two of them in together. Bless that child.


Lottie floats to cloud nine whenever Eliza invites her to play. Sometimes they leave out Henry, which is hard to watch, but it's usually not a problem. The other day, Eliza took Lottie upstairs to her room and made her into a Princess. Lottie was a most willing participant as Eliza braided her hair, found the perfect dress and added various accessories.
Eliza finds great joy in creating and Lottie finds great joy in her attention. They compliment each other in many ways. Sometimes, however, Eliza uses this to her advantage in a mischievous way. In the most friendly of voices, Eliza will call: "Hey Lottie, do you want come help me clean my room?!" Lottie blurts out with excitement: "Sure!!!" And off they go!

And here are a few misc. photos

September has been hot! My kids have all had sunburns thanks to this slip and slide (and my neglect)
The best was watching Forrest slide down the slide nakey. He flew down that slide, laughing! Babies are a lot of work, but man, when they are being cute they totally unify a family. You can't help but bond over that amount of cuteness.

As for crusty, fussy babies... well...even they are cute too!

It's not easy confining Forrest to his stroller when we go to watch Lottie at dance class. Her teacher, I've learned, has no problem asking a Mom to leave if her baby is being a disruption. I understand, really I do, but even it's one tiny little peep, she throws you "the look." I've always tried to be courteous, mindful and responsible when my kids and I are out and about, but this dance situation is a new level.Her dance teacher means business so keeping Forrest happy is a real job if I want to observe Lottie.
But it's worth it. Because even when she has to use "pretend" tap shoes because her Mom was slow to order real ones, she is adorable to watch. Lottie, by the way, is loving so much both preschool and dance!
And Forrest loves this.
They call it the "Don't tell Mom game." 

1 comment:

Katie Jensen said...

My heart totally skipped a beat seeing Forrest up this high. I have to take deep, cleansing breaths when it happens to my kids too.