Sunday, May 22, 2011

Olive You!

We've had a lot of really funny moments with Buddy lately.  Seriously, we have a funny comment or funny incident pretty much every day.  Not all make the cut on the ol' blog, unfortunately.  I keep thinking I need to make a separate blog called the Chronicles of N...

The following two stories happened on the same day last week.

Buddy came home from school to inform me he got "frostbite" at school.  It was a fairly nice day with blue skies and temps in the high 60's so it was obvious that was not the case, but I let him tell his story.  Apparently his thumb turned gray during lunch and frostbite was determined the most likely cause.  All the kids gathered around to look at it and one girl suggested he visit the school nurse.  He went to the nurse, who took a look at it and sent him back to class.  When Buddy was telling me the story, he finished by saying, "That nurse obviously knows nothing about frostbite."

I tried to ask a lot of questions to figure out more information, but those are all the details he gave me.

Later, G dug some more information out -- that he had cut himself earlier in the day and he had to put a bandaid on the cut.  ...And that's when everything clicked.  A "gray" shriveled thumb under a soggy bandaid.  Frostbite, of course.

Don't you just wish you were the school nurse?!

That day G had packed some leftover olives in his lunch.  He also included a lunch note with the following joke and a picture to go along with it.  "There were two olives sitting on a curb.  One falls off.  The other asks if he's OK.  The first says, 'I'll live.'" 

Buddy is a very literal child, so I asked him if he "got" the note.  And this is what he said:  "Oh yes, of course I got it.  Daddy wrote me that note because he loves me so much.  He doesn't want me to fall down and die, but if I do, he knows I'll be resurrected."

It took every single ounce of control I have to not laugh hysterically.  Who in the world would over-think an olive joke?  (Buddy would, that's who.)

Then he said, "Cause I'll live again.  I'll live... olive.  Oh.  Now I get it."

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

We're Full of Inspiration Here

If I had video for this story, I would make it into one of those tear-jerker inspiring youtube videos.  Since I don't, you'll just have to read about what happened.

Buddy has a lot of energy, but is not athletic.  I knew he needed the discipline and confidence boost of being part of a team this spring, but playing on a team stresses him out and makes me want to pull my hair out.  So after a lot of thought, we decided he would benefit from running with the track club in town.  It's low key, he doesn't have to be aggressive or compete against anybody else, per se.  This has turned out to be a great decision.

The track meets are brutally long, so he's only participated in the home meets this season, but the first one went pretty well.  He did the long jump, plus the 1500 and the 100.  He is definitely not a sprinter, and we knew he would do best at the longer run, although he was really nervous.  Although there were lots of kids in his age group at the track meet, only two kids participated in the 1500.  He ended up getting the 2nd place ribbon.  Although he's no dummy (and knew he came in last), he was still proud of his performance.  And we were so proud of him too!

Last weekend he had his second track meet.  This time he was a super nervous, knowing what to expect.  He competed in the long jump, mini javelin, plus did the 1500 again and the 400.  Once again he was most nervous about the 1500 and kept saying he didn't want to do it.  The day before he had spent the afternoon laying on the couch with a really bad headache and a little bit of a tummy ache.  He woke up fine, but as the race got closer he was almost doubled over in pain.  I assumed it was nerves, so we encouraged him and gave him a big pep talk.  I reminded him of the talk we had been having all week about setting goals, finishing what we start, beating his time, having fun, and being a good sport.

You can tell he's extremely nervous here.  And to put into perspective how much younger/smaller he was... the boy on the left is the other kid in his age group.  Yes, you are seeing that right.  That 8 (?) year old is a foot taller.

Once again, only two boys ages 7-8 were competing in the race, so they put them in a heat with much older kids.  As Buddy sized up his competition he said he wouldn't and couldn't do it.  He said there was no way he could keep up with the bigger boys.  We forced him to stand at the starting line to get ready.  The gun fired and off he went.  Quickly the older boys were far in the lead.  As Buddy finished his 3rd lap (holding his tummy in pain), the older boys were finishing the race.  He assumed that since they all were done, he was too, so he stopped.  When all the finish-line officials yelled at him to keep going, he did.  As he rounded the last corner into the straightaway to the finish, he was the only boy left on the track.  Everyone standing along the track started cheering for him.  All the people in the stands started cheering for him.  And he finished.

All 15 of the boys at the starting line.  Buddy is second from the end. 

He got his 2nd place ribbon and as we hugged him and told him how proud we were, he said, "My tummy hurt so bad, but I remembered what you said about not quitting during races.  So I didn't stop.  And I did it!"  I was teary telling him, "All those people were cheering for YOU!"  I know this is sounding so dramatic, but it really was an incredible moment.

His time was 8:06.  Last time he was 7:47, so he was a bit slower this time.  But considering the nerves, the tummy ache, and the snafu after the third lap, nobody is complaining.  

I finished!

Everyone cheered because who doesn't love an underdog?!  Who doesn't love to watch the smallest kid finish the race?  Who doesn't love to watch a little person kick fear to the curb?  The remarkable thing about this story, though, is how much fear and anxiety he did manage to kick to the curb.  He had a rough week leading up to the race.  And actually had a much worse week after.  But now we have this small victory to fall back on.  Buddy, do you remember that time you didn't give up?  Do you remember that time you were scared but did it anyway?  Do you remember that time hundreds of people cheered just for you?

P.S.  A few minutes after finishing that race, he did the 400.  He came in 7th out of 8 kids -- all his age.  The kid who came in last was in tears, so Buddy tried to comfort him.  And later that night he prayed for the boy that he would realize it's most important just to finish and try to beat your time.  His tummy ache was excruciating that night, making me feel so bad I made him race -- but extra proud of his effort.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Girl's Weekend

I only took two pictures the entire weekend.  This was one of them.  The other is at the bottom of the post.  

I'm way behind on blogging.  I'll probably never catch up, but I couldn't let my amazing Girl's Weekend to Seattle go un-discussed.  Nicki, Christy, Bethany, and I went to Timeout for Women, but most importantly, we got away to relax, shop, and eat good food.  Some highlights:
  • The conference was fabulous.  I learned a lot and was very inspired to be better, not necessarily to do more.
  • Conversation with my girls was fabulous and inspiring as well.  
  • Supporting each other through hard times.  And good times.
  • The food.  Oh my heavens did we eat well.  I know no one else cares, but I'm going to document what we ate, just because it all was so noteworthy.  Friday lunch:  Famous Daves.  Friday night:  Room service.  Saturday lunch:  The most incredible Brazilian sandwich imaginable (pork and pineapple sandwich with cilantro sauce) -- we scored for FREE because they took so long bringing our food.  Saturday dinner:  Cuban vaca frita, probably one of my all-time favorite dishes.  Sunday lunch:  Mediterranean.  Sunday dinner:  Fabulous hamburgers.
  • While we were at dinner we heard the announcement that Osama Bid Laden had been killed.   Let Freedom Ring!
  • Shopping.  What girl's weekend would be complete without some shopping?
  • Sleeping in on Sunday morning.
  • Traveling stress-free with Christy behind the wheel.
  • The beautiful weather.
  • The time Christy tripped over somebody's cardboard box home.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mother's Day 2011

I know plenty of women who don't love Mother's Day.  I can totally understand, but it really makes me sad.  Personally, I adore Mother's Day.  I love sleeping in, laying in bed as much as I want, taking the day off, not cooking or cleaning, not putting the kids to bed, receiving handmade cards from the boys, getting an amazing truffle in church, getting hugs and kisses all day long, getting compliments and pampering from G, bragging about how awesome my boys are, thinking about the two wonderful women who gave me the blessing of motherhood, thinking about the incredible women in my life including my own mother, my mother-in-law, my sister, my sisters-in-law, my friends, my friends who are infertile but would/and will make the best mothers in the world.  In fact, I think it's safe to say it's my favorite day of the whole year. 

This year was particularly interesting because Buddy and I have been on the rocks lately.  Things have been brutal between me and him for a few months now and a few times this week he's pushed my patience to the absolute brink (and beyond, but who's measuring).  He came down with some mysterious abdominal pain on Friday and spent the next three days (including Mother's Day) calm and pleasant.  It was nothing short of a blessing.  Pure ecstasy.  A gift.  I love that boy every day.  But oh how I love him when he's calm.  We spent a ton of time together this weekend playing games, doing science projects, reading together, and chatting about small and big things.  Saturday night I laid in bed with him for two hours past his bedtime.  He just laid and talked to me.  He didn't wiggle, he didn't argue, he didn't talk loud.  Happy Mother's Day to me...

And then Sunday got even better.  I watched part of The View on Friday and they were talking about how a lot of women hate Mother's Day because they have experienced a loss that makes the day difficult.  Then they mentioned how cool it would be if those women that are feeling down about the holiday could look outside themselves and give help to a single mom or mother with a deployed husband.  I know that's probably not easy advice to hear when you are feeling a loss, but as someone who has spent a few Mother's Days wishing to be a mother, I thought about what a blessing I could have been to someone who could have used a real break from her responsibilities on that day.  Makes sense, doesn't it?  I want to mother... and people deserve a break from mothering.  A perfect combo that benefits everyone.

I had been thinking all weekend how I could help a mother that needed a break (and still give myself the break I was anticipating).  And that's when G really outdid himself by giving me a great day.  After church he invited my two closest friends and their kids over to our house.  He threw together a brief FHE on priesthood blessings, then he and a friend gave my dear friend and her kids beautiful blessings of comfort, as they are going through a really hard time.  She's got a lot on her plate as a mother, and it was the least we could do to support her.  I am so proud and thankful that G honors womanhood, and supports me and my friends in the ups and downs of our responsibilities.  It honestly was the best gift he could have given me.  The best part, though, is after the blessings we threw together an impromptu potluck, with everyone returning quickly to their homes to bring over the food they had in crockpots at home.  Later G did all the dishes and finished the night giving me a blessing.  Talk about a perfect day.

I think we've started a new tradition of looking for ways to honor and support the women in our lives who need Mother's Day most. 

Oh, and the other tradition I'm starting next year is taking a current picture of me with the kids, since the most recent picture I have with both the boys was taken 14 months ago (see above).