Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Joys of Higher Education

Isn't the system of higher education an interesting one? First of all, you shell out thousands and thousands of dollars to learn things you're never going to use again. As we all know, once you accept that oh-so-important first job, they completely retrain you and you slowly forget everything you learned in college. After shelling out all that money for tuition, you have to shell out hundreds more for books that you're never going to read and the professor rarely refers to. At the end of the semester you may sell that book back for a fraction of what you paid for it even though it has seen little more use than when you first bought it.
Since you've spent so much money on school, you'd think you would try to get your money's worth. Here's an interesting situation: you actually are excited when the teacher doesn't show up, cancels class, or let's you out early. Wait! What? That would be like going to Wal-Mart and saying, "I know I've given you $10, but I really only want $5 worth of product." If we saw someone do that we'd think they were crazy!
Here's the real kicker: We put ourselves through all of this for a little piece of paper. Can you believe that? After all the money we pay and all the time we invest, all we get is a lousy piece of paper? I realize you get all of the knowledge, etc. That's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about tangible rewards.
On top of all of these things I've mentioned already, now I have to worry about being shot! Campus was virtually shut down yesterday because some bored college student who probably had waited too long to study for a big test, handwrote a letter saying that there would be a shooting on campus and placed it in the payments box at his/her apartment complex. I realize that the administration had to take action in case there was a shooting, but come on! Today there is a cop on every corner. Do you want to know what troubles me about that? They can't prevent a shooting! They're not checking bags at the doors to make sure no one has a gun. They're just making sure that if something does happen, they can respond quickly. Is it just me, or is that a little troubling?
Here's another thing to think about: if the entire police force in our county (plus some state troopers) are on campus, who's going to stop a person who decides it would be a great time to rob a bank?
Just some fuzzy thoughts to fall asleep by. Have a good day!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

In Case You're Keeping Track

Yes, the last time I posted was March 13. Sad, I know. My sister made this quite clear in her most recent post at I thought I had nothing to post, but that is dangerous thinking. As soon as that thought goes through my mind, something post-worthy happens. Ryan (2) was in the kitchen tonight and was way too quiet. When I went in, I found him dumping baby formula (approx. $15/can) on our cat and on the floor! I wasn't sure whether to laugh or cry.
Here's a brief summary of the last 2 weeks around our house:
  • Attended an awesome Christian mom's convention with my mom
  • Celebrated Easter with our families
  • Husband is playing football again on a trial basis
  • Lost a group member for a project that is due in 2 1/2 weeks
  • Baby (5 months) transitioned from bassinet to crib
  • Ryan (2) transitioned from crib to bottom bunk
  • Baby started rolling over
  • Baby started eating solid food

Let's talk about solid food for a minute. Why do babies always make that awful face like you're trying to poison them when you give them their first taste of cereal? Aaron screwed up his face and gagged the first time I gave him rice cereal. Then he pushed the cereal out of his mouth with his tongue. Being the good mom I am, I scraped it off his face and shoveled it right back in his mouth. When he signaled he was done with the cereal by crying, his bowl actually looked fuller than when we started. I think it was because of the regurgitated cereal mixed with saliva that ended up in his bowl. He's eating the paste much better now. He only gags on the first bite or two.

As you can see, it's been busy around our house. I'm sure I've lost any readers I had at one time because you thought I had fallen off the earth. Be assured that I am still here! Let's all meet back here again tomorrow!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Fly Away Purses

I haven't shared this on my blog yet, so I thought it might be time. I have been making some purses out of little girls' jeans. So far they've turned out pretty cute and a local business owner has offered to set up a display in her clothing store. Exciting, right? Well, I've been planning to take some purses in for several weeks, but just can't find the time to work on them. I finally got 6 purses made up and I took them with me to work today so I could drop them off at the store after work. I sent out an email at work telling my co-workers about the purses in case they wanted to buy one for their granddaughters for Easter. I never would have guessed that I would sell all 6 purses and get orders for at least 10 more! I'm very excited, but I'm under some pressure because they want them Monday since most of the grandchildren live out of town. I'm going to be gone this weekend and I've run out of jeans! I plan to pick some up at a second-hand store so I can maybe make some on Sunday. I should be in bed right now because it's nearly 12:00am and I have to telecommute in the morning. Anyway, just wanted to share my exciting day with any of you in cyberspace who might be reading this. Oh...if you need a purse, let me know, but please don't expect it before Easter! :)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Who is This Person??

My kids have been my kids since the day they were born, but there are times I just sit back and wonder who they are and where they came from. Am I alone here? Before I had kids I would wander around Wal-Mart for an hour and buy two things (for example, hair spray and expensive ice cream that comes in a little tub...those were the days of frivolous spending). I would observe these people that obviously must be horrible parents because their kids were begging for things and falling on the floor and on top of all of that, their faces were dirty and their clothes didn't match. Gasp!! Fast forward a few years and that's me with my kids at Wal-Mart!

Tonight I ventured to Wal-Mart with Madison (4) and Ryan (2). We couldn't find socks for Madison, so she decided to wear shoes without socks. Then we couldn't find her shoes, so she wore black boots with zippers. On top of that, her jeans are getting too small and her butt crack hangs out if she at all deviates from the upright position. Ryan was wearing sweatpants and penny loafers (1 size too big) with white athletic socks. To top it all off, I think they both made it out of the house with orange pizza sauce residue on their faces. And so it begins...if this was the end of the story, I wouldn't be writing this as a post. The trip quickly spiraled into an awful experience full of burning-red checks. (Facial cheeks for me and butt cheeks for my kids)

Madison wanted to ride in the cart, then wanted to walk, then ride in the cart, etc. Finally I made her walk next to me because she was riding the end of the cart as if it was a scooter and I envisioned her feet getting stuck under the cart and me running over her while the Wal-Mart employees looked on with disgust. She threw a fit about walking next to me, but I just kept walking thinking she would follow me. (I have a lot to learn as a mother!) She fell to her knees crawling after me screaming, "MOMMY! QUIT LEAVING ME! YOU JUST ... KEEP ... LEAVING ME!!!" This was the first of my blazing cheeks. I calmly picked her up and ushered her quickly to a quiet aisle while customers stared at me because I was obviously abusing her! When I got down at Madison's level to look her in the eye and discuss her behavior, I was frightened! This was not the face of the angelic baby I labored to bring life to just 4 short years ago. She had morphed into a creature barely recognizable as a little girl. Panic rushed through my body. What do I do? My precious daughter's body has been hijacked! It was like the movie Men In Black where the man's head flips open and there's a miniature alien controlling his body with little levers and switches. That must be what happened, because MY daughter isn't capable of such things. The scenes from the movie quickly ended with Madison's shrill voicing screaming, "PLEASE DON'T SPANK ME MOMMYYYYYYY!"

I thought back to the day she was born when I spent hours staring at her face dreaming what our lives together would be like. I vowed that I wouldn't be one of THOSE parents and she wouldn't be one of THOSE kids. But even my best intentions could not ward off the inevitable Wal-Mart meltdown. After living through one, I can honestly say that I don't look at THOSE parents with THOSE kids the same!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Lying to Your Kids

Here's a question I've been struggling with lately and I want your input. Is it wrong to lie to your kids? My first instinct is, yes! of course it's wrong to lie to your kids. I tell them all the time not to lie to me. Here's an example: Madison (4) has been biting Ryan (2). Even if I know what happened, I ask her to tell me what she did. She's pretty slick most of the time and it's hard to catch her in a lie. Her most recent response was, the cat bit him. I wouldn't be surprised if the cat did bite Ryan because it's happened before. Anyway, on this particular day of the cat-biting incident, the cat was upstairs in my bedroom with me while the alleged biting was occuring. Nice try, Madison. I lectured Madison on the moral implications of lying and the long-term effects (i.e. I won't be able to trust you, EVER, if you lie to me). So, I may have gone a little overboard...

Shortly after this lecture, I found myself lying to my son. Nothing too serious, mind you, but just little lies that make it easier to get through the day. Here's an example of one of my day-smoothing lies. Ryan is suddenly very picky about his wardrobe. The only clothes he will wear are hand-me-downs from his cousin Josh. I've found myself labeling everything as formerly Josh's just to get my boy dressed in the morning. Is that wrong?

Another example: "Mom, are there any cookies left?" My answer: "Nope, no more cookies." Truth: "There are plenty of cookies left, but I don't want you having anymore." It wouldn't be that much harder to tell the truth, but if I say there are no more cookies, there's no fight involved. My kids can be quite the beggars and when I'm cooking supper, I just don't want to deal with it. Again, is that wrong? Leave your opinion in the comments if you want to share.
P.S. Thanks for your patience regarding my posting. I've been a little busy lately.