Friday, November 28, 2008

My Knight

We have one McDonald's in this city that has a play centre. ONE. And it's on the other side of the city. Most of the Burger King's have play centres, but not our McDonald's.

Consequently, when we happen to be on the other end of the city for other reasons, that's where I take the kids because they love that play centre. They love it so much that they ask quite frequently if they can go to "the McDonald's with the play centre".

It was a zoo. Every child in the city must pester their parents to take them to that McDonald's. On a Friday night. The screaming was most enjoyable to say the least.

I was surprised, therefore, that Seth seemed to be quite whiny. Not that he hasn't been that way at home, but that he was that way at the play centre. He knows that he risks having to sit with me if he has issues of any sort, and tonight he was risking it. He came crying to me after about five minutes of play because Hannah hit his fingers accidentally, while sliding down the slide. I told him that he could just sit with me if he felt his fingers required surgical intervention of any sort, so magically, his fingers didn't hurt so bad after all.

The Informer then informed me that Seth was "bossing kids and telling them what to do". Having witnessed this somewhat myself, I caught Seth the next time he came down the slide to strongly recommend that he quit bossing.

It was only a matter of minutes after that that he again came running to me crying that he "bumped his head". Just as I was explaining once more, very patiently, that this critical condition required serious rest on his mother's knee, he turned around, saw someone, and yelled:


The adults in the room laughed out loud. I turned red. No joke.

He contentedly played with his girlfriend for a while longer. When it was time to go, I told him to go find his sister, tell her it was time to go, and then come down with her.


On the way home, I asked the Informer what her brother was being bossy about. The brother answered instead.

"I was telling those boys to quit scaring the girls!"

Hmm. Perhaps I was a bit hasty in telling him to quit bossing. After all, what girl does not appreciate having a protector?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Milliscent and Mortimer

This morning was much better than yesterday.

The bus rides were also much better.

My daughter was an angel for most of the day.

My son WAS NOT.

I'm certain to either turn more grey or have my hair fall out if this keeps up. I think this phase has been long enough, thank you very much.

The part where my daughter was not quite an angel happened during school. Math. She was learning to count by sevens and eights. I was trying to help her do this and this began her meltdown mode. Before it reached its height, I got smart (contrary to yesterday) and suggested that she go into her room and find eight objects, anything she wished. So, she excitedly learned to count by eights using her elastics of different colors. Cool huh? Just because I would have been content to use my fingers doesn't mean my daughter has to be.

Then, on the bus, she excitedly asked me to "take away" 9 from 14. I told her it was 5. Then she even more excitedly said to me,

"Mom, let's say you had 14 kids on this bus, and 7 got off. How many would there be left on the bus?"

"Seven," I answered, wondering if this was a trick question.

"Well," she said, "that's how many chapters I have left in my book!"

Huh? I think she is getting more abstract in her thinking by the week (like a certain wonderful aunty, the one married to my brother - I'm very sure she would understand this thinking process entirely. I'll have to remember that I can always go to her for interpretation).

Now for my boy. I will not go into how grumpy he's been. I just hope that he isn't getting sick again. In the last week or so he's called me a poop-head - yup; said, "Mom, I told you that I have to make faces to be mad!" when making a face in church after getting into trouble; insists on being first in everything; and the list goes on.

The only bright spot was tonight before bed (to which he again got his bedtime story taken away because of his sassy mouth). Surprisingly, he handled it well (which likely means that this form of discipline is becoming ineffective), because he skipped to bed singing,

Clang, clang, rattle bing bang
Gonna make my noise all day
Clang, clang, rattle bing bang
Gonna make my noise all day

We recently resurrected Mortimer by Robert Munsch last week for the first time in over a year. We have to switch our books around because we have too many and no space, so some are put into storage and eventually switched. The switch came last week (you'd have thought it was their birthdays or Christmas!). He heard that book, once, last week. I asked Hannah if she read it to him again and she said that she didn't. The little turkey remembered every word and the correct tune (as sung by Robert Munsch himself).

Fortunately, he did not sing it in bed and I did NOT have to bring in the police! And he went to sleep happy! Perhaps it's a sign that tomorrow will be better. One can only hope and pray.

By the way, in case you wonder where Milliscent came from, she's the character in another Robert Munsch book. And sometimes my girl reminds me of her. Just a little.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Not the Greatest of Days

It's been one of those days. From the moment my eyeballs opened.

It started with me waking up on the wrong side of the bed - I know, very surprising. I need much more sleep than I've been getting and, even though I got more sleep last night, it wasn't much more. So I was a full-fledged crank.

I then had an incident with my son. I dared to help him by returning something to my room from his room (because it belonged to me), and he threw a fit. Like mother, like son, I guess. He was so ticked off by this he decided he could not possibly finish his morning chore of making his bed. And I was determined he would. The result: A battle of wills to which I came out victorious. However, I can't say that I was happy about it because the method of which I won my battle did not make me proud. No, I did not half-maim my son. However, I was VERY angry, and that is NEVER a good thing.

Needless to say, I did not win any mommy of the year awards this morning.

Then, I had a two hour safety meeting before my afternoon run. The kids stayed with grandma for the afternoon while I attended the meeting, a meeting that turned out to be battleground number two. The meeting was about driving school bus in adverse weather conditions. The battle was on how much leeway the drivers should have when it came to refusing to drive the bus in certain weather conditions. I did not fight in this battle, but I came away with the beginning of a headache.

Then on to my afternoon bus run. Thankfully my kids were not with me.

During the morning run, as the last half dozen kids were getting off, someone near the back pushed, causing the front kids to go flying. This is absolutely forbidden on the bus and can actually cause suspension of bus riding privileges. When trying to pinpoint who the pusher was, I had two kids tell me it was Chase, and one kid (Chase's buddy) tell me it was Austin. Both denied being the perpetrator. For a little history, Chase is in foster care and the kid who has caused the most trouble on my bus (he was the one who socked River in the nose, as mentioned in a previous post). He has also never admitted to anything, even things I've witnessed myself. Austin, on the other hand, has always listened when I've corrected him (apologizing to me as well) and NEVER denied when he's been caught in the past. As well, Austin was quite a bit behind Chase and I really couldn't see how he could have pushed Chase. To me, this was a no-brainer. So, correctly or incorrectly, I made a judgement call, and told Chase he had to sit on the front seat for the ride home.

After school, I ensure that Chase was sitting on the front seat, but he thinks his best buddy, Brennan, should be able to sit with him. I quickly kibosh that idea, causing Chase to go into a full-fledged rage. And stupid me - I actually tried to reason with him. To the point that I found myself arguing with a 12-year-old. For about one minute, when I realized that I had been ensnared and that I was supposed to be the adult. I wasn't yelling. But I was arguing.


Well, he didn't actually swear, but he used a word as substitute that I think is VERY close to the worst word, and therefore, unprintable.

I told him if he didn't stop yelling that I would give him a one day suspension.


Totally belligerent. So, I started writing up his one-day suspension notice, all the while Brennan was beaking off about how it was Austin who pushed. Brennan, by the way, insulted Austin a couple of weeks prior by saying nasty things about his grandma, whom he lives with. Austin, in defence, pushed Brennan and almost started crying. As you can see, Brennan and Chase are not a good combination.

As I started to say something to Chase, he put up his hand (you know, the old "talk to the hand" sign) and said,


Now, this was going much too far for me. So I extended his suspension to one week. He informed me that, "I'M GONNA TEAR UP THAT NOTICE ANYWAY!"

I told him that was fine, I'd be giving his caregiver a call anyway.

Then I finished my bus run. There you have it. I booted my first kid off the bus. Not for one day. But for one week. And it was a kid who I have really, really, really tried hard to work with, and in fact, because of his terrible circumstances, have in the past let things go too long. But I realized that I really had no choice. I could not let the rest of the kids on the bus think that talking to me, totally disrespecting me, yelling at me in that manner was EVER acceptable.

I then had to talk to the vice-principal. You know, the guy can be quite arrogant and condescending, and really, I could have slapped him. Sorry, but it's true. He did not disagree with my discipline, but he said things like:

"Do you think that Chase could have, perhaps, been, uh, trying to push your buttons?" (Really, now why didn't I think of that? Hmm....are you telling me that just because I am aware of that possibility that my buttons could NEVER GET PUSHED?)

"Do you realize that they live in a foster care because their home situation was less than desirable?" (Really, I didn't know that? In fact, I am SO MUCH aware of that that I have posted about this and my heart has been TORN IN TWO. Does he realize that I PRAY FOR THESE KIDS EVERY SINGLE NIGHT? Because I am TORN IN TWO?)

Does he realize that even now I am very, very sad about this? And yes, regretful, although the only thing I could have done differently is not argue. Period.

At least when I called his caregiver, she was very supportive and very reasonable. She understands consequences and, told me that Chase pushed people around all the time and she didn't doubt for one minute that he had instigated it. I just really, really hope that she hugs him a lot. And yes, I even told her that I argued with him. Because, after all, I'm guilty and confession is good for the soul.

Then I came home and took four ibuprofen. Yep. Four.

Tonight, my son was again very cranky. I guess he was just finishing off a day that was begun that way by his mother. Thankfully, I was not that way with him. I had recovered from this morning. I hugged him and kissed him and snacked him and brushed his teeth and put him to bed without a story. Because he was out of control. But at least I loved him to bed.

And I told him that both he and I were going to start tomorrow differently. And that means I have to get to bed, like right now, and get more sleep. Good night.

Monday, November 17, 2008

"Mom! This Is Your Son!"

In the last few days, Seth has taken a very sudden, strong interest in drawing and coloring. So much so that he'll drop whatever else he's doing to draw a quick picture, or color something.

Today, he was in his bedroom drawing, when he ran out excitedly, yelling:


I had to laugh at the way he said it. I was also very surprised and impressed by the picture. I mean, this is not a regular stick man typical for most four-year-olds. I can actually make out the attempt at his hair, ears, eyes, and body.

Yesterday he spent about 45 minutes coloring the picture below. This is the same boy who just months ago lost interest in coloring after 5 minutes and requested help. Suddenly, he's coloring and very particular about it.

Not only did he pick out the right colors (new for him, usually the trees are purple and the grass is blue......), but he very carefully tried to color within the lines. I really don't think his big sister could color like this at his age.

I'll be very interested in the next while to see if this is just a passing phase, or if perhaps he has a natural talent for this. It will definitely be something we'll want to help cultivate, if it is.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Lest We Forget

I attended the city-wide Remembrance Day service today. I attended it for the first time two years ago, mainly to see my nieces, who are in cadets, march. I am very much ashamed of that now. I wish I could say that I attended it for all the right reasons, but I didn't. But I am glad now to say that I "have seen the light".

We went as a family. It was Dave's first time going, and the first time that I've taken my kids. As much as it is possible, I intend to take them yearly. I do not want them to grow up ignorant like I have been.

The kids were very enthralled with the marching: The veterans, cadets, RCMP, police officers, among others marched. They were so impressed by this that they came home and practiced, as evidenced by the above picture. They marched and saluted and called out orders.

The things that touched me the most about the service were, of course, the entrance of the veterans, the laying of wreaths by mothers who recently lost their sons in Afghanistan, and the newest veterans of all - those who have already completed a duty in Afghanistan and have returned. As the parade marched by these recent returnees, I couldn't help but let the tears fall. Most of us will never know the price that has been paid by these men and women. And this year I have endeavored, more than ever, to NEVER FORGET. And I plan to teach my kids this as well.

I thought it was fitting on this Remembrance Day, the 90th Anniversary of the 1918 Armistice, to include a copy of an article written by Kevin Myers of The Sunday Telegraph in London, England. Today, I am very proud to be a Canadian, and am so grateful to live in a democratic country.

Salute To A Brave And Modest Nation - Kevin Myers, 'The Sunday Telegraph' LONDON:

Until the deaths of Canadian soldiers killed in Afghanistan , probably almost no one outside their home country had been aware that Canadian troops are deployed in the region.

And as always, Canada will bury its dead, just as the rest of the world, as always will forget its sacrifice, just as it always forgets nearly everything Canada ever does. It seems that Canada's historic mission is to come to the selfless aid both of its friends and of complete strangers, and then, once the crisis is over, to be well and truly ignored.

Canada is the perpetual wallflower that stands on the edge of the hall, waiting for someone to come and ask her for a dance. A fire breaks out, she risks life and limb to rescue her fellow dance-goers, and suffers serious injuries. But when the hall is repaired and the dancing resumes, there is Canada, the wallflower still, while those she once helped Glamorously cavort across the floor, blithely neglecting her yet again.

That is the price Canada pays for sharing the North American continent with the United States, and for being a selfless friend of Britain in two global conflicts.

For much of the 20th century, Canada was torn in two different directions: It seemed to be a part of the old world, yet had an address in the new one, and that divided identity ensured that it never fully got the gratitude it deserved.

Yet it's purely voluntary contribution to the cause of freedom in two world wars was perhaps the greatest of any democracy. Almost 10% of Canada 's entire population of seven million people served in the armed forces during the First World War, and nearly 60,000 died. The great Allied victories of 1918 were spearheaded by Canadian troops, perhaps the most capable soldiers in the entire British order of battle.

Canada was repaid for its enormous sacrifice by downright neglect, it's unique contribution to victory being absorbed into the popular Memory as somehow or other the work of the 'British.'

The Second World War provided a re-run. The Canadian navy began the war with a half dozen vessels, and ended up policing nearly half of the Atlantic against U-boat attack. More than 120 Canadian warships participated in the Normandy landings, during which 15,000 Canadian soldiers went ashore on D-Day alone.

Canada finished the war with the third-largest navy and the fourth largest air force in the world. The world thanked Canada with the same sublime indifference as it had the previous time.

Canadian participation in the war was acknowledged in film only if it was necessary to give an American actor a part in a campaign in which the United States had clearly not participated - a touching scrupulousness which, of course, Hollywood has since abandoned, as it has any notion of a separate Canadian identity.

So it is a general rule that actors and filmmakers arriving in Hollywood keep their nationality - unless, that is, they are Canadian. Thus Mary Pickford, Walter Huston, Donald Sutherland, Michael J. Fox, William Shatner, Norman Jewison, David Cronenberg, Alex Trebek, Art Linkletter and Dan Aykroyd have in the popular perception become American, and Christopher Plummer, British.

It is as if, in the very act of becoming famous, a Canadian ceases to be Canadian, unless she is Margaret Atwood, who is as unshakably Canadian as a moose, or Celine Dion, for whom Canada has proved quite unable to find any takers.

Moreover, Canada is every bit as querulously alert to the achievements of its sons and daughters as the rest of the world is completely unaware of them. The Canadians proudly say of themselves - and are unheard by anyone else - that 1% of the world's population has provided 10% of the world's peacekeeping forces.

Canadian soldiers in the past half century have been the greatest peacekeepers on Earth - in 39 missions on UN mandates, and six on non-UN peacekeeping duties, from Vietnam to East Timor, from Sinai to Bosnia.

Yet the only foreign engagement that has entered the popular non-Canadian imagination was the sorry affair in Somalia, in which out-of-control paratroopers murdered two Somali infiltrators. Their regiment was then disbanded in disgrace - a uniquely Canadian act of self-abasement for which, naturally, the Canadians received no international credit.

So who today in the United States knows about the stoic and selfless friendship its northern neighbour has given it in Afghanistan?

Rather like Cyrano de Bergerac, Canada repeatedly does honourable things for honourable motives, but instead of being thanked for it, it remains something of a figure of fun. It is the Canadian way, for which Canadians should be proud, yet such honour comes at a high cost. This past year more grieving Canadian families knew that cost all too tragically well.

Lest we forget.

Mission Impossible?

I have been trying to vitaminize (pardon me, folks, but I just can't help using my own words. Please bear with me until this phase passes) my kidlets ever since Seth has been over-antibiotic'd. One of the things I've been giving them is a probiotic that helps restore their good bacteria. I've even been giving Hannah some, too, because I think she needs it and it's healthy.

Since it comes in a powder form, it must be stirred into their juice or yogurt. Hannah had some orange juice with this powder stirred in for the first time a couple of days ago and, with her nose up quite high in the air, informed me that "she would not appreciate having this stuff again!"


Her dad and I both tasted her juice, and honestly, you cannot taste any difference with the powder in it. This matters not one whit to her because the problem is that she can see it in her juice.

So, I undertook a mission today to sneak it into that girl, a necessary thing to do at times as parents. I picked up their favourite juice - Fruitopia - at the store. I do not buy this for our house. Ever. This is considered a treat for them. However, since they love strawberry Fruitopia and the powder is strawberry, well - sometimes compromise is necessary.

Just before lunch and while they were otherwise occupied today, I took out the Fruitopia. Carefully glancing over both shoulders, I snuck out the evil powder. I then gave them different cups - ones with lids and straws - and made the concoction. This is not as simple as it sounds because the evil powder takes quite a while to dissolve, requiring constant stirring. So I stirred and glanced over my shoulder, repeating the process for about ten minutes. I put on their magical lids, tasted it and was in awe at my genius. I then called them for lunch.

I really thought that having a different glass would raise Hannah's suspicions. I was pleasantly surprised when she took her cup and drank her favourite-juice-in-the-whole-world down, pronto! It was so tempting to tell her what she really drank, but I overcame that temptation. Obviously now I have a way to sneak it down her and I'm not about to give it up.

Mission accomplished.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Hannah's Thing-osis

I've been involved in a lot of debates the last few days about socialism, abortion, the election (there, I snuck that word in again, hah, hah!). I'm all issued out and will leave those posts to others (for a while anyway - at least until my juices start flowing again) and just write about my kids - my most favoritist (a Darlaism) subject of all.

Yesterday Hannah took it upon herself to clean out her top desk drawer. I had seen how much junk was crammed in there the day before and commented that "it looked like I would have to get in there and clean it out". This is a serious threat to her, so she took it to heart and decided to do the job herself.

I don't understand why God can't give our children the best parts of both of us. Really. I mean, would it really hurt for a least two children to be perfect in this world? It would free up some of God's time while he was perfecting other people's kids, as well.

Instead, she inherited all of my neur-osis and all of her dad's thing-osis. Thing-osis translated means: Unable to throw things away. Packrat. Considered a much worse condition than neur-osis.

If you have ever been around my house for very long, you would understand why thing-osis is really a much more severe condition than neur-osis. Four washing machines and three dryers, three fridges and stoves (although he recently did get rid of one washer/dryer set - bless his heart!), a basement crammed that one can just barely sneak into the laundry room, a garage full of things, a dining room full of tools (still from our renovations), the sewing machine set up so that my dear husband can sew all of his socks (because he can't throw the blasted THINGS out!)......these are just a few examples. Seriously.

And my dear Hannah has been blessed with this genetic condition.

Now, as she was cleaning out her drawer, she somberly informed me that she would "throw some things out". I told her that was very good (knowing how very difficult this was for her). I told her to put all the stuff for the garbage in a separate pile, and she agreed. After about fifteen minutes of working, she called me into her room and said,

"Mom, I'm pretty sure that if I'm careful, I can fit all of this stuff back into my drawer. It just has to be arranged differently to fit."

And so the separation anxiety begins.

"Hannah, have you even started any piles that you are going to throw out?" I asked her.

"Yes," she replies.

"Where?" I ask.

"Behind the door," she answers.

I look behind the door and see a tiny little pile and, quite frankly, find it very difficult not to burst out laughing. She was having trouble throwing THAT out?

I look at her seriously and say, "Hannah, I'm quite sure that you are going to find it much easier to throw out your LITTLE pile than to have ME go through your stuff and throw out a much BIGGER pile!"

Heartless mom that I am, I close the door just as she bursts into tears.

Her daddy (who is at that very moment on the sewing machine sewing up his STINKIN' HOLEY SOCKS), in a rare move of compassion, informs me that "he'll handle it".

He spends about fifteen minutes in her room. He comes out and I ask what is going on. He tells me not to worry about it. She will be getting rid of THAT pile. He then get's sarcastic.

"How would you like it if I got rid of your cards?" he asks.

The ONLY thing I save is birthday cards and such and letters from friends. THAT'S IT. I have one box full of stuff I've saved compared to a house, garage, basement full of STUFF from him, and he's complaining about my stuff?

"You're comparing my cards with pieces of paper with little squiggly lines on them?" I ask, because that comprised most of what was in the junk pile.

To make a long story short, she did manage to get rid of a little bit of her stuff. And became comrades with her dad for the afternoon while I was the big, bad, booger.

But I'm okay with that. As long as progress has been made. And it has.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

School Bus Mission Field

Driving a schoolbus has not been like I imagined it to be. That doesn't mean that I don't like it, it just means my expectations were vastly different than the realities.

I guess I thought that the tales I would blog about would be lighthearted and funny. By in large, they're not. In fact, as the kids grow on me more and more, I'm finding less to laugh about all the time.

The majority of these kids come from extremely difficult home situations. Quite a few of them are vocal about it. Little Shayna tells me that she "saw her daddy hit her mommy, and now her daddy's in jail. I don't have a daddy anymore." For some reason Austin lives with his grandma and isn't quite ready to tell me why. In fact, quite a few of the kids live with aunts or grandmas, at least part time. I pick up six kids from two different foster homes. And of the ones at least living with their mom, I find that most of them are single moms.

Last week, Shayna's brother got on the bus crying. I asked him what was wrong. He told me his "mom pushed him". What in the world do I say to that? I know the home they live in. I know their dad is in jail. I know this boy is full of anger. I also know what it's like to be a mother and that children sometimes "embellish the story".

Today I picked up four of the foster kids. As I pull up, I saw one of the boys, age 12, hit another boy, age 11 and give him a nosebleed. When they got on the bus, the 12-year-old told me that, "River took my backpack". I told him that that was no reason to hit someone, sat him up front with the little kids, and got River a kleenex for his bleeding nose. I then chatted with the principal when I got to school.

After school, River gets on the bus with his hood pulled over his head so that I could barely tell who it was. It takes me a moment to see that the kid is crying his eyes out. This is the 11-year-old boy who wasn't even crying this morning after being socked in the nose, so I'm thinking this is pretty serious. As he sits down, I try to discreetly make my way to his seat (I say discreetly because I usually go up and down the aisle at least once, checking to make sure the kids are following all the rules of safety), lean over and ask him what is wrong. He doesn't answer, so I ask him if he's okay. He shakes his head yes. I leave it alone.

These are the type of situations I have to deal with. What makes it really difficult is the fact that we're taught that we have to maintain professionalism with these kids and not to get too close to them. I'm not quite sure how I can do that. It's already hard enough not to be able to hug them when they're hurt and crying, but to remain aloof and unmoved is another thing altogether. The day I'm not allowed to ask if they're okay or why they're crying is the day I quit driving bus altogether.

When I started this job I never thought of it as a mission. It was a way to make a little extra money and take my kids with me. That's it. I'm now realizing the need these kids have for attention, for love, and especially for Jesus. That perhaps I may be the only person that they come in contact with who can give them that hope. And I find it daunting, simply because I feel at least one of my hands is tied behind my back, so to speak.

I know that nobody can stop me from praying. I know that Jesus can open doors in ways I could never imagine.

And I know that I'm starting to really love these kids.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

This Fat Lady Ain't Singing

I was thinking of posting on Monday, trying to be optimistic, that It Ain't Over 'Til The Fat Lady Sings. I was hoping that last night you would hear my anthem clear across the border.

But this fat lady ain't singing.

I spent last night reading opinions and must admit to being convicted because so many Christians were trying to be positive, saying that they would "pray for their president".

After you-tubing both John McCain's concession speech and Barack Obama's acceptance speech, I was moved to tears. John McCain was one classy guy in defeat, calling Mr. Obama "his president". Wow. It was hard to see this man, trying not to let emotion overtake him, knowing that he will never again get this chance to run for president. He had the unfortunate task of running at a time when the Republican party had a very low approval rating, and was unable to shake the chains of George Bush's unpopularity off of him. Personally, I don't think Sarah Palin's VP nomination hurt or helped him because the love and the hate for her balanced out. I think everyone can agree that very few have served their country like John McCain.

The one positive about Barack Obama's presidency is the fact that he is bi-racial. I truly am very, very happy about that. Hopefully this will heal old scars within America and strengthen relationships with other non-terrorist countries.

I realize ultimately God is in control,. However, I believe that hard times are ahead for the country of America, possibly the hardest since WWII, and that its effects will flow over the border to the country of Canada. America is just too big and powerful, and whether we like it or not, we have hidden under her protection for a long time. It will effect us.

We can now expect to be neighbours with a country whose president will appoint new liberal judges during his term, ultimately leaning to the left like we have never seen before. Kiss goodbye any chance of saving the unborn; kiss goodbye any chance of keeping the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman; kiss goodbye freedoms of parents to be the ultimate authority of our children (look at Massachussetts if you don't believe me); expect a new look at legalizing euthanasia. We now have the most liberal senator of 2007 (over Hillary Clinton and Ted Kennedy) in charge of the most powerful country in the world.

I tell you, Hillary Clinton never looked so good.

I'm done with posting on this subject. Done. Done. (Unless Mr. Obama proves me wrong). Maybe then this fat lady will still sing.

I won't be holding my breath.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Yep, Another Political Post

Please, please, please folks. If you have any interest at all in the American election (and even more so if you can actually VOTE) read the powerful words of Huntley Brown, a black gospel pianist. He so eloquently sums up the reasons why he cannot vote for Barack Obama in the hopes of compelling Christians who are being swayed by this man in any way.

I borrowed the link from Sister Buxton's blog because I was not a recipient of this email.

I said I would keep posting until after the election, and I intend to.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

My Evening of Chuckles

Don't fall over. This post isn't political.

I think my son is feeling better today. He's on his third different antibiotic for strep throat in two months because his infection has been resisting the antibiotics to date. I think (and pray) this one might actually be working. And yes, I absolutely detest giving antibiotics to my children (for all of the anti-antibiotic activists), but I also understand what strep throat left untreated can do (like nephritis and rheumatic fever - however slim that may be). I don't relish the thought of general anesthetic AND surgery to get his tonsils removed, which, unfortunately, is still a possibility if this doesn't clear up. So, because I am not a total conventional medicine advocate either, I made a stop at the health food store and am filling his little body with probiotics to replenish his good bacteria, as well an immune booster. We've got to get this little guy up and running.

He's been smiling all day. In the last few months (because I suspect he's had untreated strep before it was caught two months ago and really hasn't been feeling good for quite a while) he's gone between goofing around and irritability several times a day. Today he was all smiles with no irritability.

Tonight after church, we took the kidlets to McDonalds for ice cream because we had free ice cream cone coupons for the kids. They were extra generous with their ice cream portion, actually giving us at least TWICE the usual amount. Seth, my slow-about-everything boy, downed his ice cream so fast I was shocked he didn't have constant brain freeze. He left his sister in the dust. Then he came over and ate half of his dad's muffin. Consequently, when we got home, he was HYPER. His dad had to chase him to try to get him ready for bed, and of course this was the best game in the world to Seth. Stripped down to his undershirt and underwear on our bed, the full extent of his energy hit him (do you think maybe the sugar intake didn't help - ???). He jumped and jumped and jumped and jumped...........and jumped. And he giggled and giggled and giggled. His dad finally caught him on the bed and, as only dads seem to be prone to, kept tickling him - working him up even more.

After dad brushed his teeth, I read them a story. I had my boy-with-a-glint-in-his-eye on my right side and my girl-who-was-in-a-very-snuggly-mood on my left. And I was in heaven. We read and cuddled. As we were snuggling, Seth-with-a-glint-in-his-eye looked me and said,

"Don't harsh the fizz, man!"

"What?!" I said.

"Don't harsh the fizz, man!" he repeated.

I looked to Hannah-the-interpreter for help. I know I can always count on her. And as usual, she told me this was part of one of his Pajama Sam computer games.

Which brought back to remembrance last Sunday. Apparently during Sunday School, Seth broke out in song in the middle of class.

"Nobody knows the trouble I've seen......."

Again, another computer adventure, although this time Freddi Fish. Anyway, this brought a chuckle to Rebecca and Jenna (Sunday School teacher and helper) and it was relayed back to me. Yeah, like a four-year-old knows anything about trouble......

Back to tonight. Finally the little man is tucked in bed. Prayers are said. We are doing our Strange Ritual and finishing it to perfect completion. As I'm snuggling him, he reaches out his hand, puts it on top of my head, and prays,

"Jesus, help this food in Jesus' name. Amen." (His usual meal time grace. I guess he's worried about his mother's cooking or something - ???)

I tell ya. He's so stinkin' cute and lovable and funny and, amazingly MY LITTLE GUY.

And I've been smiling all evening.