Saturday, June 29, 2013

Have you ever...

Have you ever laid on a blanket in your back yard in the grass with your mom and your kids at age 36 six and laughed so hard trying to get pictures of all of you on your own with your iPhone?

If you haven't, you should, because those are some memories that will never be forgotten and should be framed.

Have you ever tried to fit into a carnival ride that you couldn't fit into last year, still didn't fit into this year but the worker let you ride this year anyway?

Brother is my favorite! Lindsey said that later on he came around and was steering the front steering wheel!

Have you ever been ridden on the carousel 7 times in a row without ever getting off?

Luckily her cousin joined in for the last two rides. Unluckily I was the one who had to escort her for all 7 rides... I don't do well going round and round and round and round and round and round and round and... OK.

Have you ever put your arm around a complete stranger to comfort him on a carnival ride?

Lindsey said that when the ride started this little boy started to cry and Sister put her arm and round him and said, "It's gonna be OK."

Have you every had two teenagers come with you, volunteering their time just so your kids could go on carnival rides at your local city festival?

We had 3 caregivers for 3 kids. It was amazing and actually helped my kids have a good experience at a chaotic carnival. It was a great success, not to mention, Brother got to ride the ultimate turquoise gypsy horse (cue the angel music).

Have you ever been able to fold yourself in half and then put your feet behind you head?

Brother hung out with Lindsey and her parents to watch the city festival fireworks and this is the talent he decided to show off to them! Ha! Maybe it gave him a better view of these...

Have you ever taken a drive with your family just because and taken pictures on the drive as you stop along the way, just because?

The kids really enjoyed this ride so it was quite a pleasant day.

Have you ever been to a free variety concert outside on a perfect night with your significant other without any children and just had a great time enjoying the entertainment, each other and the time to relax and unwind?

This was one of my summer highlights! Dancers, singers, violinists, comedians, the works! It was fun!

Have you ever written something down and then thought to yourself, "Is that it? Is that all I have to say?"

You answer yourself back, "Well, ya. It's almost midnight and we're not needing a masterpiece. You really do need your sleep. Good night."

Good night.

"Good night."

"Who was that."


"Me who?"

"This one."

"Oh. OK."

"Good night to you too then."

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Playing outside with the kids

This is what I do so that I can be outside with the kids and still have fun at the same time.

  I draw on the sidewalk or my neighbors' driveways.

Sister LOVES to color and draw. I found that sidewalk chalk was a great way for her to express her artistic side in the spring, summer and fall. We regularly have a colorful canvas of children's artwork on our sidewalks and neighboring driveways as soon as the snow melts.

I decided I could join in with her instead of just sitting there watching her and making sure Baby wasn't running off to far.

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em... right?

So this was how it started:

The neighborhood kids thought it was the greatest thing ever and I was an instant neighborhood child celebrity. It was fun! I loved that I could make them so happy and impress them with my meager skills. So when spring came, I drew this one:

Then I started having adults stop by asking if I did that and saying they loved seeing it there and it brightened their day. Marc said I should start doing a weekly sidewalk thought. That sounded like fun so I thought I'd do something when I had time enough while being out with the kids.

Then, my neighbor, Brittany, decided she was having so much fun seeing my art appear on the sidewalks she bought me some nicer chalk (not just from the dollar store) and said I could even use her driveway.

So, as a thank you, I did this for her:

That was a lot of work but I was very excited to have done it and see what I could do with more colors.

The next one I did took a lot less time but was specifically to cheer my heart and hopefully someone else's. I hate to say it, but that's really why I do these sidewalk chalk drawings. They cheer me up. That's why they are usually some kind of motivational thought or happy saying.

But this one I just did, is my pride and joy. I asked Marc to take pictures of me working on it so you could get a glimpse of the process.

I'm glad he did because even I don't realize how big the art is till I see these pictures.

I draw in the face shapes first and fill it in, then add the hair, so they look a little creepy at first. I want to keep the whites of the teeth and eyes as white as possible.

I don't add all the details like shines and blushes till the very end, you know, the little nuances that make them look a little more like them.

This whole thing took me 2 hours from start to finish, and that included fixing it a few times after Sister rode her scooter over our faces... literally... on the chalk ones.

Ta da!!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Tickled Envy?

I get so jealous when I see other children of about 2-4 years old who actually sit...

Just sit by their mom, dad, caregiver or even their dog for more than 1 minute.

I get green with envy when I see one that actually starts to get up to leave and a reminder is given to "Wait here please, and we'll leave in minute." I swoon with jealousy and then want to cry as I over hear the mother say to her friend, "Ugh, they just never learn do they?"

Oh, if they only knew.

If they only knew what my world was like.

What it was like to not be able to take my eyes of my 3 year old for 30 seconds let alone be able to turn to her and say, "Wait here." Ha! That's laughable!

Now, I am giving one of the more extreme examples but,  you know, I really do hope that the majority of you mothers out there give your children an extra hug and a kiss just because they did stand by you today and please don't roll your eyes just because they were anxious to leave, they are kids and I was impressed by them today.

I also want to give a shout out to all those that have children who allow their parents or caregivers to make last minute, or even hours before, decisions with only a minimal amount of grumbling, complaining or ho-humming from the back of the car. Trust me, that is nothing to get all bent out of shape over and let it ruin your day about. Sure, discipline and make sure to let them know what is appropriate, but try not to tell your friends how terrible your children are later. Only after you have sat in my car during a change in plans can you truly appreciate the slight complaints coming from the back seats. Breaking routine, big or small, is a HUGE no-no in the realm of Autism and Fragile X Syndrome. Sister teaches me that every day, no matter how often I learn it, I always learn it a new way.

I'm green when I see how so many kids Brother's age have friends show up at their houses all the time to hang out while I just hope for interaction for him on the nights of Mutual, at church and if we happen to run into anyone at some of the activities I try to keep him busy with each day. I wish he had friends that wanted to hang out with him just because he was so cool. Not just the kid that was fun to be nice to when he was around. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE his buddies, I do, it's just that Green Monster that comes to attack me at some moments.

And then there's the moments like right now.

I'm sitting her blogging listening to Brother laughing with the neighborhood kids and enjoying just being himself and having fun. I am reminded that he is loved and cared about and it doesn't matter if he has specific people coming over to hang out (frankly, I don't even know if he would know what to do if someone did come over unannounced).

Then, I'm tickled Pink!


You know, that happy color pink?

I have my pink moments like when Baby hugs me so tight that everyone around me gives and audible "Ooh, cute!"

Or when Sister is so happy she can't contain it and jumps around like a human-sized grasshopper!


I have those moments, sometimes, almost simultaneously! So I guess I can be tickled pink and green with envy at the same time. So does that mean I have a case of tickled envy?

I guess that's the life I live in.

I guess that's how I balance it in my head.

One thing I do know for sure is that I couldn't make it through days like these if it weren't for the help of all the angels around me.

Gracie working with Sister in the morning with "summer school"

The crew came to help me out with all three kids at the water park, Baby was content to not be in the picture

Helping with puzzles

The forever loved Lindsey

Even Lindsey's little sister has been getting in on the volunteering
So you see, how can I not be tickled pink when I have so many who are willing to help.

Just a little while ago I had someone tell me they are so jealous of all the talents I have.

I politely informed them that I think that Heavenly Father knew that my talents were the only thing that would help me stay sane in this life and make me feel like I was able to serve others although I was so busy with my own trials.

So I'll try really hard not to be jealous of you, and you can try not to be jealous of me.

I know it's hard not to be jealous of a graphic designer, photographer, blogger, sidewalk chalk artist, singer, married to an Alec Baldwin look-alike, but built like Superman kind of man who also has 3 children with Fragile X Syndrome and whose life will never know anything other than what revolves around those 3 children all the way until I die, but I think you will be able to get over it.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Dinner at our house

"Dinner's ready!" I holler outside to Marc because he is usually somewhere out there.




"BROTHER!!!'' I yell this over the top of the stairs at least 3 times because I am too lazy to walk down the 2 flights of stairs to get him off his iPod and out from in front of the TV. Sometimes he hears me, but most of the time, I end up tromping down the stairs to stand between him and the TV with my "mom" stance till he gets the idea and he finally takes his headphones out so I can inform him, "Dinner time."

He happily follows me out front to make sure I am doing my mom duty of getting Sister off her scooter and away from her friends to make her come have at least 2 bites of dinner, "Sister, it's time for dinner. You can play with your friends after you eat your dinner."

"I'm not hungry mommy. My tummy's full. I just want a Pediasure."

"Nope, sorry, sweetie, you need to eat dinner..."

I drag her in just as Marc is coming in. He is washing up just as I am dragging Baby in to "join" us for dinner prayer which sometimes Baby likes to say for us—that's the best part of dinner time.

Usually, my dinner gets cold while I make mac and cheese or a quesadilla for Sister and Baby so they will actually sit at the dinner table with us for a few minutes.

We actually succeed sometimes!

We'll work on smiling with our mouths full of mac and cheese later.