Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Whats the matter with moms these days

Grace got her dance evaluation last week, when I first opened it I have to admit I got a little angry.....OK, maybe for a second I was red hot furious. Shamefully, I admit, for a min I thought I am NOT going to show her this. You see, Dancing is Grace's favorite thing in the world. She takes lessons at The Dance Club in Orem and she is on a team this year. It requires A LOT of dedication.....she goes to dance for 5 hrs a week and more if there is a performance or competition. One week she spent 14 hrs at dance.....some of it was just waiting around at rehearsals and some was performance time....but still for a 6 yr old that is a BIG commitment. I have often felt torn at the amount of time she spends at dance.......but she loves it. Even when she is not at the studio she is dancing in her room. She never complains (but i do a lot, not to her, but to anyone else who will listen)....she has missed her birthday....family parties...ect, ect.....She has gone to dance sick, pretty much a requirement if it's a week before a performance....Yet I have NEVER heard her complain. She is dedicated.

So naturally when her evaluation wasn't perfect....I got angry. But then, I took a deep breath and read it again. It wasn't terrible, it was actually pretty good. And all the scores that were low.......well, when I read her teachers comments, I had to agree. So I sat down with my princess (who was eager awaiting her first report card ever) and explained to her, that this was a tool for her to get better and that it wasn't going to only say that she was perfect. And that she has to be able to take criticism if she want to be a truly good dancer. As I went through her evaluation with her, she handled it with nothing but "grace". She acknowledged her needing improvement in the categories sighted and she was pleased in the praise she got. Then she went up to her room to practice. I was so proud.

Well yesterday her dance teacher sent home a note. She felt the need to explain her evaluation, because apparently many of the mothers called to complain......many of them felt that red hot anger that I felt when I first read it and didn't take that moment to read it again. I understand how these mothers felt. We dedicate a lot of time and MONEY to this dance club. We sacrifice hours at rehearsals and buying costumes and finding all the hundreds of little things that they need in there bag at all times. We watch as our little girls work so hard for their teachers. I once watched as Grace sat on her knees on a hard wood floor for 20 min as the older girls in their number practiced their part.....all the little girls just sat there with their backs strait....waiting. So naturally we want the teachers to all say...."your time and energy and money has been well spent, your daughter is the most perfect dancer ever...the end".

But that is where the problem lies today....I think are children too often are shielded from criticism. They are told they are perfect in every way....everyone gets a trophy. I remember I once came to my mother and told her I was having a problem with a friend.....she didn't want to play with me anymore. I thought my mom would tell me that my friend was to blame......but, she didn't. She said " Sarah, it seems like that is happening a lot lately......maybe you should look at your behavior and what kind a friend YOU are".....At first I was mad. But then I realized she was right, I was at fault.

Self reflection and improvement could be one of the most important things we teach our children. They need to be able to take criticism and grow from it. I know I need to be better at this.....I need to learn to be less protective and more focused on making my children into competent, and independent men and woman. Just like Grace's dance teacher is trying to make her be a great dancer.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

My Education

I went to a Private School for first grade. My mother says I was the cutest thing ever and my teacher was a push over.....if I didn't feel like doing something.....I didn't have to. Also my sweet little brother Jake went to preschool there, he didn't like it much....so when he would cry they would bring in his big sister to calm him down. Needless to say when I entered 2nd grade in public school it wasn't long until my teacher showed up at our house (they did that way back then) to tell my mother I wasn't ready for 2nd grade. I remember crying in front of a mirror .....very dramatic! So I repeated 1st grade.....not a good start for my academic career....and it sort of explains my spelling.

I loved my second grade teacher....but that's all I really remember about it. 3rd grade was a disaster.....I talked ALL the time. We had these punch cards and if you got a certain amount of punches then you couldn't go to Lagoon at the end of the year......I was the ONLY 3rd grader who couldn't go. Cried in front of a mirror again.

In 4th grade I started a new school. I hated it and apparently I started eating my feeling because I got a little chubby. I had a hard time making friends. But we did make homemade root beer that year......so that was good. Oh and I was still flunking all my spelling tests.

5th grade was my most painful year! My brother told people my name was Bertha and in "big Bertha". I would chase boys around the playground telling them I wanted to marry them. My only friends were the other girl with hairy armpits and the girl who wet her pants once. (and if either read my blog....I was in the same boat) My grades were fine...but definitely not great!

6th grade I stated to thin out a bit....which made life easier. But my period started...and no one should have to deal with that on a mini toilet. I started to do sort of well in math, but spelling....not so great!

7th grade .......BOYS= bad grades! I got my first "boyfriend" but he tried to hold my hand, so we broke up.

8th grade......Boys= bad grades!

9th grade......high school boys = REALLY bad grades! My parents grounded me for 3 month until the next report card came out. I pulled my grades up. and I kept pulling them up! Ended the year pretty strong! But the biggest news of nineth grade was my "senior boyfriend" we never dated or held hands or anything....but he was my boyfriend. And he wore a cherry pie t-shirt and short overalls......Hot!

10th grade not much happened. Got pretty good grades and I was really into drama.

11th grade my only year of school that I actually felt really proud of. I got great grades....I was Jr class president. My first kiss (at 17....remember that children)

12th grade I just glided by.....I knew I wouldn't get into BYU so I settled on UVSC . And stopped trying. I took like 3 real classes then a lot of stupid electives. But I did have a lot of fun.

UVSC........well it had the hall of flags....or should I say the hall of distractions! I just would walk down the hall talk to someone and then miss class....not good. I was put on academic probation and the end of my second year....

Why have I told you all of this.....First to explane my sigh of relief and the PRIDE that my children do so FANTASTIC in school. They all take it seriously....Thanks in most part to my husband who is inches away from 2 PHDs....wow amazing example for my babies!! And because my kindergartner starts 1st grade next year and I will have 6 hours a day to myself and I am at a loss of what to do. I always thought I would have more kids....so now what.
Well I've been contemplating my education and weather or not I should give it another try. I am not a student....and I don't know if I have the ability to be one. But I don't think ending my education on academic probation is exactly the example I want to be to my children........

I know I'm a lot more then my education gives me credit for.......I just wonder how much more I could be with a little more education.......

Friday, February 25, 2011

Do I really need to say this again?

As mothers don't we all get sick of saying the same things over and over and over and over again.......I sure do. There are some things that I have been saying almost every day since the picture above was taken, and I'll probably be saying these same things until they go on a mission or off to college. Let me share some of these sayings with you...

1. Do you have underwear on? Put on your underwear. Nick I just put away a week and a half worth of laundry and it didn't have any undies in it.....

2. GO TO BED! Quiet down. Go to sleep. ......Do you want 3 jobs tomorrow?

3. Gross.

4. Stop making that sound.....let's play the quiet game....whoever says another word gets a job.

5. Take the dog out....let the dog in....take the dog out.....let the dog in

6. Guys when you clean your room please put the DIRTY laundry in the hall......not the CLEAN laundry, only the DIRTY laundry....if I see any clean laundry you'll get another job...(needless to say I will go up the check said laundry and find clean clothes that are still FOLDED in the pile...seriously)

7.Brush your teeth....let me look and your teeth....you didn't brush your teeth ....go brush your teeth.

8. The floor is not a garbage.

9. Your bored.....I can find you some thing to do.

10. Gross.

11. Eat one more bite...three more bites....five more bites....BIG BITES...

12. Flush the toilet...who didn't flush the toilet....Gross

13. Throw away your paper plate but not your fork.......who threw away their fork?

14. Put on your coat....were is your coat....didn't you bring a coat to school

15. Wash those hand....wash your face....wash your FEET

16. Gross

17. put on socks....where are your socks...whats that smell, Joe i told you to wear socks.

18. who wants a job....because I have a lot of stuff I want done.

The list goes on and on.....I just thought i should record it so one day when my kids are complaining that their children don't listen, I can remind them that they didn't either. Of course I'm not talking about the princess.....she's an angel ;)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


AHHHHHHH......Valentines day. A day dedicated to the ones we love. A day full of candy and flowers and love notes. MY day began with heart shaped pancakes, homemade syrup and some blood red eggs (they looked truly disgusting) ...........Welllllllll.....that's not really the truth, the day really started with a strong dose of Excedrin! And I don't think I would have made it through the day without it.
My little loves, loved the breakfast!

The night before Paul and I spent about 3 hours on the valentine boxes. Yeah I know we should let the kids do it, but we have set the bar pretty high as far as the boxes go....and we can't back out now. I even made a box for the princess, and midway through she informed me she couldn't bring a box to school. ....Oh well it's all about doing things for the one's we love right?
Both of the boys had a "romantic night at the movies" theme....Nick did a drive in and Jonas' did a movie theater. And of coarse both theaters were playing "Casablanca"!

Jonas' box was made with legos......and he had some funny guys on it. Girls with mustaches on dates with storm troopers. But the two pictured above were my favorite. But the absolute coolest thing about his box had to be that the Casablanca scene was legos as well...how funny is that?

After I got the boys off to school, I took Grace to get her hair cut. Don't panic we only took off four inches and it's so long right now that no one could tell a difference. Then we went and got Pauly a treat and also some supplies for Jonas' class party. Then off to the mall to pick up a gift for my nephew (for my mom's party). Then back to the school for the party. When we got to school Grace said she saw some classmate going to class and she should go with them....."No way" I replied class doesn't start for 45 min. I forgot it was early out day ( like it is every Monday) and so grace stayed with me at the party and was 40 min late for class. Good one mom! After the party I went out to lunch with Paul. He had to teach that night so this was our date...don't worry he had a whole 45 min to spare. You can squeeze a whole lot of love into 45 min at Smash Burger! After lunch I was headed home when I passed the kids school and notice my children standing alone in front ...( remember I forgot early out day). after school I took Nick to scouts, Grace to Dance, picked up 2 cakes for my mom, picked of Jonas from his scouts...picked up nick from his scouts.....picked up the kitchen....picked up Grace and then headed to my moms.
Every year my mom has a big Valentines dinner. She buys us a present and makes a fantastic meal. And it's funny but most of the time we all go. We don't go on dates with our spouses....we have dinner with our family. I love it! And with Paul working late...I was glad I could celebrate with people I love.

When Paul came home from work I was in bed already. You might be saying to yourself "ooh la la" but alas.....I was warn out. I had my varicose veins removed the previous Monday....so all this running around made me exhausted. And besides a scabby, bruised and swollen leg isn't exactly a turn on. So it wasn't the most romantic valentines day, but I did get to spend it with people I love and isn't that what it's all about?

Friday, February 4, 2011


I was reading through this blog…… contemplating shutting it down. But I found it to be something of great value, not for you, not even for me, but for my children. How I would have loved to read my moms personal thoughts and feeling when she was a young mother and wife. I hope one day my kids will read this and get a little glimpse of what I was like when they were young. So on that note…. I will make a resolution to write more…and to write honestly.

I started out 2010 in a major funk. I was over weight, tipping the scales at 166….and for someone who is not quite 5’ 1” that is really heavy. I also wasn’t pregnant, which was something that I had been trying to be for 2 years. I was lost. Sad. Discouraged. It was like I was filling my empty womb with food. Then I decided I couldnt control getting pregnant but I could control myself physically and started my weight loss journey. I lost 51 lbs, and am a fit 115 lbs. It took almost 10 months to do it, and during that time I learned so much about myself. I realized that I am in charge of my happiness…it’s not dependent on my husband, or my children….but is my responsibility. I don’t know if we will ever have another baby. Grace is six and as the gap gets larger my desire for another one gets smaller. I never in a million years could have imagined having such a small family. But you can’t predict your future…and would you really want to?

So now I begin 2011 without a resolution to loose weight, and that’s a first. Instead I am going to have to focus on making harder changes. Like working on my spiritual and religious self. It’s hard to be in a marriage with someone with different religious views…but I can’t hide behind that any longer. I use Paul as my excuse for being lazy…and that’s not fair to him. I used to find such peace in scripture study and prayer and now I have a void wear that use to be. So I will step it up and I’m sure I will be happier for it.

I would also like to start taking pictures again. It’s sad when you stop doing something you were once passionate about. I not only what to take more photos, but I would like to take another class, and really work on developing this hobby into something great. I find such beauty through the lens of a camera. Not only when I am looking through it, but when I see what others have captured. I love everyone’s photos on facebook and blogs. You can see how much they love their kids or how beautiful they find this world around them.

I would also like to….cook more, clean more, spend less, practice more patience, eat more healthily, tell more jokes, make more friends, give more of myself to others, be more charitable, more kind …………the list goes on and on and on. But I know there is one thing I can never be and that’s perfect, so I will take it one day at a time. So today maybe I’ll pray and charge my camera battery.

I would like to say one more thing before I go. I am happy, really happy. I’m not saying life is perfect or simple, but I am excited for what’s next and proud of what’s behind me. And you can’t ask for more then that.

Monday, January 31, 2011