My Beautiful Christmas Disaster

The_Grinch_who_stole_Christmas

I had many ambitious plans to help fight my Bah Humbug spirit. I was determined to teach my kids a lesson and get some holiday cheer at the same time.

Disaster and Disappointment

Plan #1 – Homemade craft decorations…FAILED!
Kids were so busy being stubborn and ornery that it never came to pass. They double teamed me and refused to comply with any of the household or school guidelines. Chores went undone or were done hastily and poorly. The same with homework. Homework was done so quickly, none of the answers had anything to do with the assignment. Completing the homework correctly became a battle. It was full on war…me against the kids. I won, after many challenging battles. Why does it take 4-5 hours to complete 10 math problems? I don’t understand!

Plan #2 – Help with the food give away at church…FAILED!
My church did not do the food give away this month 😦

Scrooge

Plan #3 – Serve meals to the homeless at one of the food banks or shelters. In L.A. there are plenty!… FAILED!
I simply did not follow through on making the plans. I was so exhausted from warring with my twins, I did not have the energy to follow up or the brain power to remember.

Plan #4 – Make homemade gifts…FAILED
Reason: See #3 above. No time or energy to make the candles and scarves. Result: I have a mountain of yarn at home waiting to be crocheted into something and lots of flour, sugar, peppermint, and chocolate waiting to be baked into something delicious. Thank goodness I hadn’t purchased the stuff for the candles!

The Big Turn Around…The Beauty of it All

My younger sister flew in from New York later Thursday night. As soon as we got in we started reminiscing and recalling fond childhood memories. We have an aunt that we had not seen in over 20 years. We had not idea where she was or how to get ahold of her. So, when you need to find something or someone, you Google it, and that’s just what we did. My sister and I sat up and searched diligently for our long lost aunt. Oh how we loved and missed her. Then it happened! We got a hit. We found a likely address but no phone number. So we decided to go knock on the door. We were reluctant at first. Even after we knocked and the person on the other side responded, “Who is it?” we were speechless. For a couple of educated, fully grown women, we could not muster up any words to say. The obvious choice would have been our names, but that was too much like right. So, we opted to leave a note. As my sister was writing, the door opened. There was an older woman standing in the doorway. I began to speak and explain why we there. Would she remember us? Is she even the person we are looking for? After I gave her the name of my aunt whom we were looking to find and told her exactly who we are, she excitedly ushered us into her home. It was her…our grandma. We had finally found the missing link in our family that we had desperately been missing,

My sister and I spent the next couple of hours talking about our lives, family, and catching up. The joy felt when we finally laid eyes on out aunt is immeasurable. Our smiles were big and our hearts full. I showed them pictures of my twins, who look remarkably like me. My sister talked about her life in New York. Our grandma fussed at me for not having gone to visit my sister in New York in all the 7 years she’s been there. We told them about our brothers, the sour relationship with our parents. Grandma fussed some more. It is great to have to this part of our family back!

When our aunt walked through the door she was carrying bags of yams. Yams at Christmas time = delicious goodness. She was making sweet potato pies. So, my sister and I returned the following day, this time with my twins. Our cousin was home this time so we go to see everyone at once. The last time we saw our cousin she was a toddler. To see her all grown up reminded my sister of her age, because I clearly didn’t age as much as she did :). My kids loved Auntie and Grandma as much as my sister and I did when we were kids. Auntie and Grandma, in turn, loved my kids as well. In fact, Auntie hadn’t changed one bit. She was still up to her tricks. When we left, my kids told me that she had slipped some cash into their pockets. My sister and I simply smiled and laughed…”She used to do the same thing to us when we were kids.”

God Knows Best

There’s a saying, “If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.”

Nothing I had planned for Christmas happened. No decorations, no crafts and baking with the kids, and no Christmas dinner with family. There was no tree, candles, wreath, pine…nothing!! Not even a Christmas song. Then God showed up!!

In His infinite wisdom, God gave me the Christmas that He had planned for me. He sent my sister to me, allowed us to give our grandfather a surprise birthday party. At the party was our brother, and our cousin from D.C., along with a host of family and close friends. God reunited us with family we were missing, family we had not seen in almost 20 years. God granted me and my children time with my little sister. My kids got to bond with their aunt. Oh the adventures we had and the memories we made…Priceless!!!!

I didn’t get what I wanted, and was not able to do anything I had planned. However, I got everything I needed and then some. With God, sometimes you get what you want and sometimes you don’t, but you always get what you need.

No Gifts for Christmas

No Shopping this year. Forget the Big Deals and Door Busters... I don't need them!

No Shopping this year. Forget the Big Deals and Door Busters… I don’t need them!

Buying gifts this is year is out of the question. With our recent move and all the reasons my kids school is finding to drain me of cash, Christmas gifts are not in the budget this year. No Black Friday lines or Cyber Monday deals for this chick. No toys, games, do-dads, trinkets, accessories, or the like. No nothing! I am not actually giving my children gifts this year, nor do I intend to shop for anyone else. This Christmas is about giving, and the love and effort that goes into each gift, not receiving.

There will however still be gift giving. I am going to teach my kids a lesson in giving, love, and the true meaning of Christmas this year. For Christmas Eve, my children and I will be up bright and early serving food to the homeless and needy. This will teach them to be grateful and appreciate the things they have, however little it may be. We will then spend the remainder of the day making homemade gifts for family and friends to add to the craft gifts we will have already completed by that time. The time we spend making craft gifts will not only help our family to bond, but it will also teach the children a valuable skill and build their character. The twins will develop patience and persistence while learning to crochet, build and construct projects, paint, and more, all of which can be built on and become hobbies and trades.

The Saturday before Christmas we will rise early to give away food at our church. Every month out church gives away big bags of food to the community. This month, we will be there front and center sorting through food, packing the bags, and handing it all out: another lesson in appreciation and a precursor to the impending breakfast we will serve a few days later to really drive the lesson home. There will be no big tree this year. I will decorate the house simply and beautifully with things we create and only a few store-bought items.

If you are wondering what we will be making, wonder no more! Here’s the short list of some of the crafts we will be doing.

  • crocheting scarves
  • making frames
  • baking cookies shaped like holiday themed items like candy canes and lollipops
  • baking breads and small cakes
  • making ornaments
  • making wreaths
  • gingerbread house

I’m sure we will add as we start working. If you need some inspiration, take a look at my Pinterest page. What are your thoughts on my ideas for this holiday season?

What will your family be doing this Christmas?

Note: I am a HUGE Peanuts fan, so Charlie Brown Christmas music will be playing. I will also be sneaking Charlie Brown and the rest of the gang into our decor and crafts. For those of you interested, “A Charlie Brown Christmas” airs on Tuesday, December 18th. We watch it every year and the kids love it. Hope your family loves it too.

Git Yo Kid!

What the heck happened to “It takes a village to raise a child”? These new fangled young parents don’t want anyone disciplining, chastising, or even gently correcting their kids and they won’t step up and do it. This epidemic does only affect young parents but older naive ones too.

When my kids were 8, I took them to a park in Beverly Hills since we were in the area. There was an adorable little 5-year-old girl there. My daughter played with the little girl for a while. It all stopped when the girl poured sand on my daughter’s head. Five year olds know that throwing sand is not nice or wise, or at least they should. When my daughter approached the little girl’s father to tell him what had happened he shrugged it off. “She’s only 5, she doesn’t know any better.” What the heck!!!! He didn’t even bother correcting his little angel or have her apologize for what she had done. No, she doesn’t know any better… Because YOU don’t bother to teach her!

I do not like going to the store, walking down the aisle, and being blocked by unsupervised children. Kids ought not to be running up and down the aisle, messing with items on the shelves, or yelling inside the store. If any of these things occur, that child’s parents need to immediately snatch that kid up and shake some sense into them.

If your kid is yelling at you, talking back, or being obstinately defiant or disrespectful… Snatch’em up!! Discipline is your friend! Say it with me people… Discipline is your friend.

If you let your kid run loose and they act a fool, don’t be mad or upset when someone like me corrects them. If you or your child want to step all the way outside your mind, I will be happy to meet you there and tell you how to get back. People are too concerned with privacy. You want your neighbors to mind their business and leave your alone but the minute something happens you pray they know something and can offer assistance. You stay out of other’s business and they stay out of yours. What does that prove? It proves that you are both selfish individuals. Growing up if I acted a fool, and Ms. Betty saw me, I was in big trouble. Ms. Betty would get me, then my mama would get me. Nowadays, no one is getting anybody and these kids are rotten because of it.

The kids in my building run around and play from the time they get home from school until almost 9 o’clock at night. It’s amazing how NONE of them ever have homework, dinner, or a curfew. Then you get a parent like me who talks to all the kids as if there were my own. I fuss at little Johnny and Sarah just like I fuss at my twins. No one has said anything to me yet. Maybe it’s because of how I carry myself. Maybe it’s because they are glad someone is correcting their kids because they don’t have the nerve to do it. Whatever the reason, I’m not going to stop. It takes a village to raise a child and I’m going to be the village even if I’m there alone.

I’m tired of these bad kids running around behind their trifling parents. Pick your pants up. I do not want to see your underwear! Put on some clothes little girl…you don’t need to advertise to get attention and that’s not the kind of attention you want anyway. There is no reason your kid should know the words to the latest 2 Chains or Usher song but can’t learn their multiplication lesson. If your kid can recite Beyonce’s entire album and dance moves to her video, and is failing P.E. and English, you need to be slapped. Raise your kids and stop letting your kids raise you. Grow up and grow a spine. Lay down the law and stick to it!

I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions on this subject. Do you correct or discipline other people’s kids? Do you allow other people to discipline your kids? Does the village still exist or is it and antiquated ideal now?

I Sing Bedtime Songs to My 11 Year Old Twins

In the last month I have lost my best friend because of some foolishness and my stepfather has passed away. To say that I’m sad or emotional would be a gross understatement. Yet, I am finding my joy. My greatest source of joy, outside of God is my children.

God blessed me with 2 lovely bundles of joy at the same time. My son and daughter can make me smile when no one else can. Being a mom is so fulfilling and rewarding. It’s not in the big things or huge accomplishments and milestones, but in the small things and quiet moments that we strengthen out bond.

Tonight, as with most nights, as I sent my kids to bed, they asked if I would tuck them in. I did. It wasn’t enough. They wanted a story too. Since we recently moved, the stories they wanted were still in boxes, so I sang. We have 2 songs that have been passed down. My mom sang them to me and I sing them to my babies. We sing Cotton Fields and the other is a song my mom came up with and we add the kids names when we sing it. Oh how they love to hear mommy singing about having her babies in her arms. My 11 year old, pre-teen, prepubescent middle schoolers still cherish our special time. They smile so big and bright every time I sing to them. It’s as if they are hearing these song for the first time every night. Each smile is a ball of sunshine sent to brighten my day.

Even the bedtime stories are simple. My grandmother bought them a set of fairytale books when they were smaller. These were just Red Riding Hood, Three Little Pigs, Jack and the Beanstalk, Puss in Boots, etc. I have read each story probably dozens of times, among other stories. Does this stop them from wanting to hear them? Nope! They lay there listening attentively and getting into the stories as I read them. As short as they are, by the time I’m done reading them my little angels are relaxed and sleep or well on their way to sleep.

Five minutes of my time comforts my children and gives them peace and security. In return, they give me joy (they also give great massages). It is so important to take time out for our children. It is us as parents who help shape, mold, and build our children into outstanding people. Our bedtime routine is a lasting memory that they will undoubtedly share with their families and so on. I believe I have the greatest kids ever and I am so grateful for the memories we share.

What kind of special moments do you share with your children? What do you do that makes them smile and warms your heart at the same time?

Poem to my Stepdad

Losing a loved one is never easy

This was my contribution to my stepfather’s obituary…

You took me in your arms from the gentle age of 2
Sugar is what you always asked for, giving the same in return
At 5 you made the promise permanent, “I will always love you”
Crumbs require a lot of attention, we would soon learn

We had our share of ups and downs
My teenage years were rough to say the least
It was a time of many frowns
You never stopped caring, even when I acted like a beast

“Gimme some sugar,” you would say to me
“Okaaaay,” was my reluctant reply
With a kiss on the cheek you were pleased as could be
You’d plant a huge one on mine in the blink of an eye

We may not have always agreed
Or seen eye to eye, but you were there
Whenever I was in need

You were many things to many people
A husband, a father, a brother, a friend
The impact you made is something remarkable
To this little girl, you were simply a my dad

Love,
Kimberly a.k.a. “Crumb Cakes”

Backstabbing Bitter Betrayal

Sorry, this post is not very inspirational. Today, I’m ranting. If you find a lesson or can learn from my pain, then I’m happy.

People come into and out of our lives on a regular basis. Has there been a person enter your life that you thought would be there forever? They became your best friend and closest confidante. You found yourself wanting to hang out with and talk to this person all the time. You have built a great relationship, even spent time with each other’s families. You loved each other, or at least the other claimed to love you, so much nothing could tear you apart. Your love and devotion toward one another has been tried and tested before, but nothing could ever break your bond. Then, out of nowhere…BOOM!!!!

Like a sack of hot coals, it all comes crashing down. This person, your best friend, confidante, has taken a machete, shoved into your back, and twisted all in one movement. The wound is immediately treated with salt and washed with lemons. This tree hugging hippie has betrayed you in a way you never thought possible. You never even thought they were capable of such treachery. What they did makes the Judas kiss look like a frolic in the park. I mean, they committed such duplicitous treason that you cannot even fathom what they have done. Has this ever happened to you?

Well it happened to me. Let me tell you, it has literally turned my world upside down. In the last 24 hours, I have experienced, sadness, gut-wrenching pain, heart ache, deceit, shock, disgust, disappointment, feelings of betrayal, loss, insecurity, anger, disbelief, denial, embarrassment, and an entire array of emotions I am unable to identify or coherently explain. It is as if this person planned a barrage on my heart. Questions, so many questions have entered my mind, some of which I did not have answers for. With so much at stake, all the risks, and everything to lose this nincompoop did it anyway. The one question I do not have a sufficient answer for is, “Why?” How could someone so close to me be so selfish? Yes, stupidity obviously but, really why? Did they not consider for one instant how this would affect you or those around you who have come to rely on our bond? NO! The selfish jerk was only thinking of him/herself. Why am I even bothering to protect this jerk’s identity? Why do I keep the details of the betrayal private despite the significance of the pain and the circumstances behind it? I have no freaking clue!

Pain and hurt do not adequately explain what I am feeling. Oh how I would love to choke the mess out of this quack until their eyes pop out and their tongue flails about. How do I go about getting over this? Forgiveness is for me, not the other person. Honestly, I do not want to forgive. All I can do is cry and pray and my prayers right now are just vocal tears.

God, help me!

I am reminded of 2 scriptures…

Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:10

and

Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am weak; O Lord, heal me, for my bones are troubled. Psalm 6:2

I have been listening to “Can I Lay in Your Arms” by Donald Lawrence all day. I mean it has quite literally been on repeat the entire day.

Day #1
Cry out to God and seek His comfort. This hurts like the devil!!!!

Who’s Ya Daddy?

This topic really hits home. I was the screwed up child with an abusive stepfather and very absent father. Had it not been for my grandfather and my adopted father taking the time to love on me, I don’t know where I would be. My misfortune was having an absentee father. My blessing was, and still is that I had a very present grandfather and adoptive father. However great my blessings, I have never been able to negate the sadness I felt behind not having my father. Never in a million years did I want my children to experience the loss and pain I did at not having my father around.

Fast forward to December 1999…my grandfather passes away. January 2000 I met my kids father. It was a textbook case. Troubled girl seeking to heal pain with the love(lust) of a man. Things were great in the beginning, as they always are. Once the twins came and he did not step up to the plate, that’s when the poo hit the fan. We fought, argued, and fought some more. We were prime for an episode of Jerry Springer with our Baby Mama/Baby Daddy drama. Fast forward…2 restraining orders, 1 child support order, and me winning sole legal and physical custody despite his antics in court and we are current.

The twins are now 11 and doing well. Overall they are happy, healthy, smart, and talented. In a nutshell, they are blessed and highly favored by God. To know them is to love them. With all the accolades, extracurricular activities, trophies, and tremendous outpour of love and support from family and friends there is still a gaping hole in their lives…the absence of their biological father. They would look for him at their karate class and tournaments, football and baseball games, performances, swim practice, birthdays, and holidays. The great misfortune for them is that he is never there. He neither answers phone calls or returns any messages. It matters not the great urgency in the message or its magnitude…he does not pick up his phone. Keeping a promise would be like Prince wearing green. He spends more time with his young girlfriend(who, by the way, is so young I can see the Similac dripping from her ears) than his own children.

Three years ago I met and started dating this wonderful man from my church. I admit, he was not the type of man I was accustomed to dating. As I would later discover, he was exponentially better! Fast forward to present day and we are now planning our wedding. He has children as well, so I thought this would be a little tricky. However, I was pleasantly mistaken. We’re the present day Brady Bunch. Our children all get along great. My children absolutely adore him and have taken to calling him “dad”. At first, I did not think this to be prudent and was very hesitant. I discussed this with my fiance’ and my children. He was okay with it from the beginning. I know now that he has always intended to marry me. Upon speaking with my children, I was taken aback by my daughter’s wisdom and maturity for her age. Out of her own mouth, “Mommy, when we call our dad he never picks up and never calls us back. When we call Mr. [Fiance’] he answers the phone and returns our calls. We spend more time with him than our own dad. He’s more of a dad to us than dad.” Now how could I argue  with such logic coming from the mouth of my then 8-year-old daughter? I couldn’t, but I had to at least play devil’s advocate. After all, the dad they have has broken their hearts multiple times. The emotional trauma caused by their absent father displays in their behavior regularly. Why would I allow this man to play the role, then deal with more trauma once he decides my family is too much for him to handle? This man has no bond or tie to my children. There is nothing to make him stay. He can up and leave at any moment and there would be nothing I could say or do. Countless scenarios played in my mind while I wrestled with this day after day. Maybe in time it would work itself out. He would leave before my kids became attached and everything would be okay. Or maybe my kids would change their mind and listen to reason. Eventually, a decision had to be made, and it was. In the end, we all won…they got their dad.

In the time that I was dating my fiance’, every imaginable challenge arose, and some my mind was was not capable of envisaging. Several hospital stays, doctor visits, therapist appointments, DCFS appointments, and court dates later…he is still here by our side. In fact, he has been here through everything. The Lord has blessed my children and I with a dad, a strong man, a God-fearing man who loves his family and adores my children as his own. Blending families is difficult enough without the added challenges mine brings. Forget baggage, we come with a veritable cornucopia of luggage that would put Coach to shame. My God has seen fit to take care of us through it all and continues to show His love. My children have the dad I have prayed for, and I have a mate, a partner who blesses me, loves me, and lifts me up. Here I am, after struggling to raise my children without a constant and strong male figure in their lives, and no child support being blessed more than I could have imagined. Y’all don’t know! Any other man would have run for the hills with all the madness I have to endure. This man right here…this man of God that I have been blessed with is STILL HERE and WANTS to stay. Either his crazy or a sucker for punishment, LOL. He’s mine and I love him. He completes me…he is the missing piece to my puzzle. I thank God for him!

Yes, my children’s biological father is a deadbeat, absentee father, full of drama, immature, childish, and irresponsible; that is my mistake for being with him. So what! My children have been blessed with an even better dad, siblings, and more family who love and support them.

How many dads does your child have? How did your blended family come together and what hurdles did you have to overcome? How do your children accept and relate to your spouse? How is God blessing your family?

Science of Tears

It’s funny how tears work. Slicing an onion, uncontrollable laughter, loss, anger, joy, happiness, and sorrow all bring tears. Sure, many other emotions and factors cause us to cry as well. Consider this… Is the thing that makes you begin to cry the same reason you continue to cry?

Last night I watched Steel Magnolias for probably the trillionth time. I know it like the back of my hand. Despite this being a newer version, it was still the same movie. Lifetime remade the movie with an all Black cast. Now, anyone who has seen the original knows that Shelby is going to die. However, knowing this was not enough to keep me from crying. The moment Shelby was put on life support, tears began to well up filling my eyes and blurring my vision. By the end of the movie, I was in full cry mode…tears covering my face, eyes red, even a runny nose.

Despite the reason for my tears and the movie coming to and end, I could not seem to stop. It was as if something had taken over me. Suddenly I could feel something begin to swell inside me. I began to cry even more and uncontrollably. It had been a long time since I have had a good cry. I soon realized the reason for these tears had nothing to do with the movie. As if it just happened yesterday, I felt the pain at the loss of my grandmother followed immediately by the pain of losing my grandfather. It has been almost 13 years since I lost my grandfather and a full 7 since my grandmother. Even as I am writing this, tears are skewing my vision.

I am conveniently reminded that they are not here to share in the milestones of my life and walk with me on my journey. No longer will I be blessed with their wisdom, advice, and love. Only my memories to get me through each day and each hurdle. The simplest things are made exponentially more difficult. Who will walk me down the aisle? From a little girl, it was always my grandfather. He promised me he would.

Now I lay here, drowning in a pool of tears. How did I get here? I was fine 2 hours ago. The movie is over. It is my belief that we can hold on to things for only so long. I try to be strong and not let things affect me. At some point, the emotions and feelings buried deep inside come to the surface. They can either explode like a volcano or pour like gentle rain. Crying purges the soul. It relieves us of our grief and pain. It helps us express extremes emotion, both happy and sad. They are necessary to keep us sane. I welcome my tears and I’m grateful for the release they bring me. I feel lighter. Of course I miss my grandparents very much. The pain does not go away. It only eases and become more bearable.

Today’s moral: Embrace the love of today, cry regularly, and laugh often. Sometimes you have to laugh until you cry; others, you may cry until you laugh.

My Son, the Slacker

As a single mom with twins, my children often team up against me and try to take me down. There is never a dull or quiet moment. They seem to take turns driving me insane and getting on my nerves. So, my adorable 11 year old son seems to think fat meat is dry and his mother was born last night. Like many boys his age, he hates doing chores, homework, and anything else productive that removes him from the television or video games. The rule in our house is no video games on school nights and no television until all homework and chores are done. Does he listen? He listens about as well as an elephant does acrobats. My charismatic, handsome, talented, and intelligent son follows instruction and abides by rules with as much accuracy as a blind man trying to playing darts.

For some reason, my son has gotten into his head that he can continue to miss classwork and homework assignments with no consequences. I don’t think he even cares anymore that his video game system is not plugged in. Taking things does not affect him. He finds other things to occupy his mind and time. You really have to admire his creativity and imagination. This boy turn pens and pencils into fighter jets, erasers into missiles, and crayons into wrestlers. Why listen to the teacher when there is wrestling match happening courtesy of your pencil pouch? Who cares about positive and negative integers when Triple H and John Cena are going at it?

So the question becomes this…how do you punish, discipline or motivate such a kid? He does not care to anything unless it directly affects him. He doesn’t even want to chip in and help around the house, but he will surely ask everyone for help when he has a task to complete. The vicissitudes of life, maturing, and responsibility are all things he would much rather ignore. I don’t blame him. Why grow up, embrace change, and become responsible if the only thing that happens is loss of all privileges and some else is going to do the work?

In my sneaky mommy mind I have come up with a plan to fight back. He wants war, well he’s got it. There’s no way my 11 year old son is going to out smart me. My plan is simply this, I will give him a hefty dose of his own medicine.

Tactic #1 – For each missing/late assignment, he will do 50 push ups, up-downs, or leg squats (I reserve the right to decide which). This will take place every day the assignment(s) are not turned in.

Tactic #2 – I will no longer do anything for him. Let me explain. Of course I will cook and drive him to school, help as needed with homework, etc. However, I will no longer be washing his clothes or his dishes. He will wash, dry, fold, hang, and put away all his own clothes. He will be given a set of dishes; 1 plate, 1 bowl, 1 cup, 1 set of eat utensils. He will only eat from these. It will be his responsibility to clean them. The same with his bath towels, and bed linens.

Tactic #3 – He will only be given what is required by law. That means he gets food, shelter, a ride to school, and a place to sleep. All the extra stuff like Movie Night with popcorn, cookies, and ice cream are gone. When I take special trips to get frozen yogurt, he will get what his money pays for. Since he has no money, that will be nothing.

Tactic #4 – Make him practice his playing the drum until his arms get tired. Maybe this way he will stay focused instead of trying to hit the other kids with his drum sticks.

Now I have just typed a pretty good game plan if I don’t say so myself. Will I follow through? That remains to be seen. I can be a pushover. Get me frustrated enough and it’s World War 3! Parenting does not come with a handbook. Rather it is a daily, lifelong, learning experience. Whether or not I stick to all the things I have mentioned, the important thing is that I recognize the need for positive change and improvement in key areas. I will continue to do my best.

Lord, help me so these kids don’t conquer me!

6th Grade Camp Part 2: The Let Down

This morning began with last minute packing as I prepared to send my son off to camp. We rush out, stop for breakfast on the way, and make it to school just in the nick of time. I found myself having a different conversation with him than the one I had with my daughter when she left. Instead of “giving him permission” I admonished him to behave. He likes to show off for attention. My son is the class clown. So, my concern was the he mind his manners, behave himself, be respectful of all adults, and follow the rules and directions given him. I encouraged him to have fun and reeled him in to a realistic level of excitement, getting away from the cartoon-like Bugs Bunny excitement building inside him. I was beginning to feel comfortable with my coaching and we were pulling into the school parking lot.

We did all of that prepping only to find the kids were no longer going; the trip had been cancelled. Apparently, something like 30 plus kids and staff from the first trip, which my daughter returns from today, took ill. They contracted a virus and no one knows where it came from. Now I am concerned about my daughter. I have not received any phone calls from anyone at camp, so I assume she is okay. However, as a protective lioness, I worry about my cubs when they are away from me and faced with even the slightest danger or adversity. As if I weren’t already anxious enough, now I really can’t wait for her to come home.

Today’s mission: find a way to cheer up my son and relieve his disappointment from missing out on camp.

Update: My daughter is one of the kids who got sick. New mission…nurse my baby back to health 😦