Sunday, March 29, 2009

Hints from up above

Hans & I joke that I should write a parenting book called Chaos Parenting like this blog. I am notorious for not being the perfect mother and my parenting skills are becoming legend or rather infamous.
My habits are not widely known, but I have noticed that when I am screaming at the top of my lungs people seem to be around to take notice.

Example #1:
Our typical Sunday routine consists of me flying solo, (Hans has a church calling before church even starts,) with 3 children to get breakfast down their throats, teeth & hair brushed, pressed and dressed for church, not to mention out the door in plenty of time to get to church punctually. This generally happens without too much of a fight, but now and again I have a doddler named Riley, who just won't be pushed, pulled or persuaded to move at MY pace. When I'm slightly stressed and running 2+ minutes late I start to FREAK OUT, just a little and my voice raises and I usually yell to him "COME ON RILEY! HURRY UP!"
Well, on one of these "freak outs" our neighbor, Brian happened to be right behind us going to church as well. While I was loudly scolding Riley for his snail like movements, I looked up to see Brian 3 steps behind us. I felt rather sheepish and out of control and apologized to him and Riley for my elevated voice and we all went on our merry way to church.
Two weeks later it was a rerun and again Riley was dragging his feet and again I yelled at him and again Brian was right behind us. I knew that he knew that my yelling was not a one time deal, I felt mortified that I could not keep my composure outside of my home. I tried to laugh it off by saying to Brian, "Now you know the truth, I yell at my children on Sundays and probably on other days of the week too." He was kind, like he always is and said that he has 4 kids and knows about Sundays, but I knew that God was trying to send me a message and Brian was his messenger.

Example #2:
Every month the boys have a day off from school other than holidays and weekends. My groove is completely thrown off and because the boys are not doing their regular school routine their idleness becomes the devil's playground in my home. It is all starts very innocently, the boys are playing and then it turns into wrestling and then Conrad goes from Dr. Jekyll to Mr. Hyde in .25 seconds. The amateur wrestling is now a WWF smack down and either Riley starts to bleed or Amelia gets in between the two of them and she gets hurt and I lose it. And on this particular day, I lost it pretty loudly and then there was a knock at the door.

My 1st thought: "Whoever it is, they have been standing there long enough to here me rant & rave and didn't knock until after I had finished yelling."
My 2nd thought: "I know the person behind the door is of some importance like the missionaries, or one of my friends who has the patience of a saint, or someone without kids who won't understand why I can't control myself or my children and wonders why I'm having a #4 if my life is so out of control."

So I opened the door and it was the JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES bearing a message of PEACE. Oh yeah... Generally, when they come to my door, I tell them I'm happy with my church and no I don't want any of their magazines or pamphlets and that's it, but I knew that, they knew, that I knew that they had heard me yelling at me kids 30 seconds earlier and I took their Message of Peace pamphlet, thanked them and closed the door with utter humiliation.
Does that sound like a loud enough hint from God?
God knows that imposing HUMILITY works really well with me and I know what He's trying to tell me, "Plan better. Get up earlier. Keep your temper. Have more patience. Don't micro manage. & Find joy in the journey."

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Wintry mix?

It's snowing again today and apparently there's supposed to be a blizzard or "White Out!" (That's one I haven't heard before.) stated, which I check as obsessively as my email, that today there would be a "wintry mix." What's a wintry mix? To me it sounds almost like a sweet party food covered in white chocolate. (can you tell I'm pregnant?)
Being a desert dweller most of my life, I have only known of a few basic adjectives used to describe precipitation. They are: snow, rain, hail, flash flood and humidity. In Las Vegas, that's all that ever happened.
But here in Minnesota it's a whole new world full of words used to describe what comes out the sky and Hans and I wonder and laugh at how there can be so many possibilities. For example: Flurry (no not the milk shake at Mc Donalds), iced rain (no not hail), sleet, blizzard, snow shower, lake-effect snow, snow pellets, soft hail, thundersnow, rimed snow, graupel, fog, and of course wintry mix.
Who knew?

Update: 3/11/09
Today I took the boys to school and the temperature was -4. Just getting into my van was an adventure.
#1 The doors were almost sealed shut because just 2 days ago it was 36, meaning it started melting all the snow, but that night it snowed and went below freezing causing all the water to, well, freeze.
#2 Because it was -4 and I hadn't started my van for a couple of days, it almost didn't start. I did tell the boys if the van didn't start we would all just go back to bed and sleep all day. Too bad for them and me.
#3 The windows were of course covered in frost and snow. As usual I started scraping them, but there was a third layer of icy film that made scraping almost impossible and it appeared that the inside of the window was also filmed over. I etched a 12 x 12 inch square on my side of the van and off we went. Luckily 10 minutes into the drive, the car warmed up and the defroster kicked in, leaving my view crystal clear.