Showing posts from January, 2016

A Bumpy New Year and Resolutions

Fourteen days into 2016. Slow. Long. Not great days. Rain. Cold. More rain. Sick kid. No sleep. A new septic tank AND drain field in the front yard. All the mud all over. Nice to have a new septic tank. Not nice the mud. Four new tires and a crown on a kid's tooth had to happen. The school restart button stuck and we painfully pushed through some long days where I thought I must be the worst mother and teacher that ever lived on planet earth. I was sure that within a week I had pushed my children in the opposite direction of yearning to learn. Blank stares. Big pouts. Pleads to be “done”. All they wanted to do was read The Witches by Rhoad Dahl. Fortunately, we’ve found a rhythm and the good guys win in The Witches and it’s headed back to the library. We’ve discovered some pretty cool stuff about Chippewa Indians and Wilde Rice and some awesome leaf cutter ants that live in the Amazon River Basin and Johnny Tremain is finally pulling us in instead of c

Some Serious Powerfully Reading: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

 I found a copy of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever at our local Goodwill bookstore. I grabbed it for a buck. George was in California for a conference so I pulled it out to read to the children after dinner during the long haul before bed. I started to read and they started to giggle. Lots of giggles. Lots of crazy. I thought I knew the story but I didn’t know it at all. George was back before we’d finished and he joined in for our nightly reading. We laughed at the ridiculousness of the children and the adults and the obvious lessons about the sad truths and amazing truths surrounding Christmas and all the hoopla that comes with it. The end of the story had us in tears and we were awestruck by the power behind this simple silly story. Put it on your list of Christmas reads with your kids for next year.

Learning To Yell At The Right Time

Raising children is a constant experiment. It isn’t a guaranteed formula with a guaranteed outcome. We are constantly hypothesizing, testing, guessing, practicing, rearranging, refiguring, counting, collecting, experimenting. What works once, doesn’t always work again. One outcome sometimes repeats itself over and over, then, suddenly, it doesn’t ever reoccur. ] With our William, we’ve learned a few new lessons. Or perhaps, we’ve learned that every child needs parents to be aware, consistent, vigilant, loving, and present. Every child needs to know you are not going to change, you are not going to quit, you are not going to walk away. You are not going to bend -- at least not too far. Recently, William has started to detest his nap time. This would not be a huge problem, but without a nap, he is a mess by 6 p.m.. Without a nap, he doesn’t make a lot of sense. He knows he needs it, but he has a hard time giving in to the rest; especially when big brother and

Living In A Dream World

William – Sometimes we just have to say, “You’re livin’ in a dream world buddy!” This summer, we were driving down the highway towards Georgia. It was a white wash of rain – hard to see – hard to drive. William is shouting from the backseat, “We are doin’ it! We are doin’ it!” If we can’t jump in the car for an adventure – he is looking for one. Out come his “dress ups”. Cowboy, fireman, Indian, pilot, doctor, dragon, Spiderman, Batman, a clown, a chef. To William, “Everything is awesome.” Unless he is exhausted and needs a nap and something to eat. This year, he figured out how to ride his bike with no training wheels without trouble at all. We went to Sanibel with George for a conference and he had to ride on a big bike. He paddled all around the island with no trouble at all. A little miniature man on two wheels. He loves to help in the kitchen. Fry eggs, make waffles, make cookies, make pancakes, to make anything I’m making… He’s decided he is

George Wilder Our Poet

We were driving toward Georgia for Christmas. George Wilder got out his fiddle and started playing and singing Christmas carols in the back seat. He pulls passion from his toes and it sings a soft beautiful sound. He writes his own songs and poetry and plays instruments as easily as I type on a keyboard. On our way home from Christmas traveling, he started singing songs to fussy Hannah. He sang with such passion and sweetness. George harmonized with him and it filled our car with peace and beauty. George Wilder puts power in nursery rhymes. George Wilder decided to bake a cake one afternoon. "A carrot cake!" He spread the icing as if he were painting a masterpiece. It was delicious. He was so proud. George Wilder makes baking carrot cake artwork. He picks up a book and powers down and reads for hours. And then, jumps up packed with energy for long 6-10 mile bike rides. He loves to care for Hannah and build with William