Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Yes, they hurt when you step on them. And if you're barefoot and happen to step back down on them before you swipe them off your foot, they will make you cry out again! However, Lego never disappoints. They don't break. They don't look one way in a catalog or on the box, and look like something else when you open them. They build upon each other and they live a long time!
TJ got his first Lego Hero Factory last Christmas. Since then, any prize or reward for a full sticker chart has been a Hero Factory or mini Lego figure. Well, we've accumulated many and this weekend we discovered that we were missing about 3 key parts to completing all of his Hero Factory "guys" at the same time. I'm actually surprised that we haven't lost more than that! Well, Tim went online and discovered that you can order replacement parts through Lego customer service. (Here I thought they'd make you buy a whole new set!) So he selected the parts we needed and ordered them quite easily. A day later, however, he got an email from Lego saying that they weren't going to charge us. Yes, you read that correctly. They wanted to let us know our new parts were on their way and that we should enjoy them without paying this time. I nearly fell over. How sweet is that. Woohoo!!!
Thank you, Lego. Seriously, what a way to make a customer feel pretty awesome. We'll continue to enjoy building and maybe implement even more family Lego nights!
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Monday, September 17, 2012
As for TJ. Well, the first day of school and the drop off went so well...but the transition has not been an easy one. As of today, we are two days now without tears. He got a Halloween prize from us on Thursday and today for shedding not a single tear. Let me back up and say again that TJ LOVES school. But he does not love lunch and recess. Or, I should say, the process of lunch and recess. His little voice quivers and shivers every time he talks about it. That first week, he came home every day with a full lunch box. My heart broke every time I saw his untouched food and pictured him sitting at the little lunch table unable to open some of it and just too choked up to eat any of it. I hate not being there and I just want to kiss that little neck and be there to make it all okay.
So what about the process is he not cool with? More than missing us, it's the fact that he "doesn't know who is in charge and what he's supposed to do." He's afraid of doing the wrong thing or getting lost or not knowing exactly what to do. He woke up every night that first week crying in his sleep, "where am I?" and "where do I go?" He also verbalized this to us under the covers in a dark room prefaced by "I'm embarrassed to say this...please keep it a secret but...I don't know what I am doing!" Well my heart mended up enough after that to break again when he said he "raised a quiet hand" the whole time at lunch for help and no one came to him. And that's when Tim and I decided that I should go in and "help out" with the kids. Buyers have to put in a code and the PTA was asking for assistance so I gladly signed up. The rest of that week and the next, there were a few other moms helping out too and I just cheerfully opened up ketchup packets and fruit snacks and milk cartons and encouraged those little beings that they were doing the right thing. I admit, I was overwhelmed myself by the number of kids (160+) and the noise and chaos of it all. Of course my 5 year old was feeling unsupervised and unsure of himself. I was too and I'm thirty-...well, not 5!
So, in addition to the aides' direction, I was able to reinforce the specifics of where to go, when to throw trash away, when and how to line up for recess and so on...over and over. Sounds simple, but it really isn't to them. There is a lot going on and a lot that they have to do themselves. I now have 20 new best friends and they all hug or high-five me when they see me. I am officially known as TJ's mom. Friday, my status was upgraded to 'hero' when I saved the day and separated two little kids' backpacks that had become connected at the zipper. I am now the cool kid in class. Finally! : )
Once TJ got the hang of lunch, I didn't want to mess it up by doing it every day and being more of a problem than a solution so last Wednesday was my last one. He's only cried once since then and I think we're gonna be on a roll. So far, this week has been awesome! (And yes, today is Monday.)
I do want to touch on school rules. TJ is terrified of these rules and had a nightmare about them as well. Apparently they drilled them into the kids the first few days and had them scared to death. I'm all for rules, of course. The delivery of them may have been a little harsh. I really can't say though because I am one of many moms and he is one of many kids. Each one of them probably heard them in a different way! Anyhow, TJ had to tell us in private and in the complete darkness of night that he broke a rule....but that no one saw him. Because of this, he was afraid to go the next day. I'm pretty sure he thought a jail sentence was to follow. He even told us that he drew a picture of him breaking the rule with a red 'X' through it so he wouldn't forget to tell us about it. I kid you not! He brought it home the next day. See below. (He is climbing up the slide.)
Monday, August 27, 2012
I was terrified
Sunday, August 19, 2012
Soon, I will be writing about fishing, football, kindergarten and Cassidy...woohoo for busy summers!
Thursday, July 5, 2012
i want to begin by asking you not to be offended if you are finding out about this by blog, and not from us personally. please, don't take it personally. it all happened in such a way that only few people knew the good news...which helped us when dealing with the bad.
it has taken me a very long time to write about this. and to be honest, i never thought i would. period. but for the last few weeks, i've wanted to have it in writing so that tj could look back and read about it. and so that his little sister's life would be more real. and not lost in whispers...because it does still seem like a bad dream.
we weren't very vocal about telling people when we started trying for baby #2 a few years ago. but when i didn't get pregnant within the first 8 or 9 months, i went to see my dr. a few months later, we started fertility treatments. that was a lot more complicated and trying than i could have ever imagined, but i never thought that it wouldn't work. over a year of that went by, and none of it worked.
we decided to take a break from the clomid last november and a month later, just before christmas, i quit my job. two weeks later, in the first days of january, i was pregnant. i can't even describe how insanely elated i felt when i saw that plus sign on the test. i couldn't contain myself! and can hardly describe the way i laughed out loud and jumped around for awhile. i shook like crazy before calling my doc for bloodwork to confirm. the next day, the nurse called with my results and seconds later, i called tim who was on a business trip. i sent him on another trip with my news. he was ecstatic and in disbelief. over the next several minutes, we had planned that baby's entire future. and the way tj would kiss that baby and love that baby with us. and the way i would get to walk tj to kindergarten with a newborn in the stroller. and who that baby would look like. and would she have red hair? and what tj would say when we told him. i floated through my days and weeks after that news. praising God with my feet barely touching the ground.
that was 6 months ago. and i don't have a belly.
i remember every single detail about what happened in late february. every single detail. i remember being crazy excited for the next ob appointment. and i remember him looking at my bloodwork results and saying ' you are definitely pregnant'. and the relief i felt. i remember him pointing to the screen on the ultrasound saying, 'there's your baby'. and i remember the way his eyebrows furrowed when he measured some things on the screen. and looked back at some of the numbers. and i remember going back for more bloodwork. and i remember when i called for my updated results. and i remember when the nurse told me to hold for the doctor. and i knew when she didn't tell me the results, that it was bad. his voice came on the line and i just knew. gently, he told me that i needed to prepare for a miscarriage. and that he was so sorry. i remember choking out a question or two, and a response to his question. and then i remember my anger, and my windpipe closing. and i remember hanging up and trying to breathe through my panic. and sobbing out loud telling that tiny baby that i was not giving up on her. that i would not let anything happen to her. that that doctor didn't know my God. and what my God could do. that she was safe. and everything around me turned white and i could not catch my breath.
i walked through fear for the next week. staying as positive as i could. begging God to give me peace because i knew what he could do. why would he allow me to be pregnant with this baby after waiting all this time, and then take her away? he wouldn't do that. i had convinced myself he wouldn't allow that.
and then we lost our little person. i never knew that kind of pain existed. this is the part i have to skip.
if i hadn't been on my knees already, i would have been knocked to the ground. i don't think i got up off the floor for a week. like water colors, my sadness and despair melted into pure anger and hatred of nothing. of everything.
we hid as much as we could from tj. we told him i didn't feel good and couldn't play as well or as much for a little while. somehow, he sensed the depth of all of this and sat on my lap. literally sat on my lap for days. that boy doesn't sit still, but he did then. and somehow, i was able to wait until he was asleep each night to absolutely lose my mind. having him need me really got me through the hours each day. before then, i didn't think i could possibly love my husband more than i already did. but there is a new level of that now. i had no idea there was more!
for a week, i did not speak to a soul other than tim or t. and couldn't get near a phone. or even read a text. the thought of communicating sent chills up my spine. made me want to jump out of my skin. i did not want anyone else near me. and now, months later, i find that very interesting. i'd like to learn more about that reaction and what it means.
somehow, we still made it to church. to the building at least. we didn't want tj to miss out on church, but i couldn't make it through a service without silent tears streaming down my face in defeat. or without running out after 10 minutes in. i couldn't sing. i couldn't stand up there. and there were a few weeks when tim was traveling and i took tj to his sunday school class, then sat in an empty classroom so i could hide.
i battled with myself for so long. i argued back and forth within myself. i knew i had every right to be so angry. but i also felt like i couldn't be angry because i already have the best son on earth in tj. and that others are so struggling in more ways. in different and in worse ways. and how could i be so selfish to be angry when i literally had everything i ever wanted. and i went back and forth. back. and. forth.
my husband let me feel everything i needed to feel. supporting me and carrying me, but not smothering me. and my parents let me hide away for awhile. and whenever i needed to after that. and my mom let me be angry...until one day. she wanted to come over to talk and i cringed knowing that she wanted to address my feelings. ew, that word made me shutter but i welcomed it. sort of. she brought me the lyrics of a song i'd loved since i was a little kid. she talked a bit and gave me the lyrics. and then gave them to me printed off in slovak and another language too. and i cracked up. i couldn't stop laughing and that was the start of my healing. she also gave me a cd of this woman she'd heard at the cleveland pregnancy center banquet. she said i was a fighter and, in the most loving way possible, that i was letting satan win. i didn't think i was a fighter anymore but over the next few days, i felt like i taped up my knuckles and got in a fist fight with the devil himself.
for 4 days, i fought my way out and was afraid at every moment that the springing up of strength i felt was going to go away. but it just grew from a tiny seed until it blasted out of my heart. and i felt like me again. just like that.
i really do feel like it was a dream. and i only remember bits of the two months of thrilling excitement ... but i can't get tim's words out of my head even still. one night in the midst of our loss, he said he knew we'd see her in heaven one day. and my response was that i was afraid i wouldn't know who she was. he said, 'han - she'll recognize us.' and you know what else? the first thing our little girl ever saw was jesus' face. she will never be sad, or be hurt. i will never let her down. she knows only perfectness. and i had a dream that night and saw her face. she had dark hair, little curls and i can still see her little face. as clear as i did that night. and she is beautiful and safe.
i've never been through anything like this before and i'm so glad i wasn't alone. while it didn't rock the depth of my faith, it sure shook it like crazy. and tested me. i knew God was there the whole time and i hated it on a certain level. i hated hearing that prayers were being said for us. i hated that. o how i hated that. but the tiny part of me that stayed me, was glad but didn't want anyone to know. especially the angry part of me.
i am so thankful for my family. my whole family and my friends too. they have been so helpful as i have shared with just a few. but i thank God a million times a day for my sweet son and my strong husband. i am so lucky and so honored to be a part of them. since the day tj was born, i have adored him more and more each day and every morning. with the beginning of each day, i wake up with a little tickle in my heart just waiting to hear tj call to me or run into our room and grab my face with excitement to get up for the new day. i am in heaven here on earth. but i am in more light now than ever before. and i can honestly thank God for that.
thank you for letting me share. my cup overflows.
Sunday, June 17, 2012
Sunday, June 3, 2012
Do you remember the Full House episode when Michelle graduated from preschool? (Please tell me some of you used to watch that show. It was one of my favorites - ha!) Well I thought it was so goofy that they made a big deal about preschool graduation...and yet, now I get it. I really didn't think I'd cry, but Tim looked over at me while we were sitting in the auditorium and I had tears streaming down my face. It was really emotional! Full-day kindergarten is looming and I am in shock that it's so close. (But luckily, TJ is pumped about it!)
Here are some pictures of Mr. T getting his certificate. I put it in a frame on the kitchen table when we got home and he was very proud of that.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Sunday, April 15, 2012
TJ has been in love with the library lately...and we go several times a week. Lately, he has been extremely interested in the human body systems and how things work on your insides. He has also been in love with Scooby Doo comics and super hero comics. He discovered some kids comic books at the library and we've brought several home over the past month or two.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Forget basketball...having a March with weather consistently hot is total madness and I am loving it up! It is amazing how much the weather can make amazing days even better!
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Today was a most certainly awesome day and I wanted to show some cool pictures. Super busy and super cool.
After school, we had a friend over for Pirate Day. We decorated the house the night before and got out all of his pirate stuff that was scattered in different toy bins and boxes and cabinets all over the house. Turns out he has a ton of pirate stuff and it made it all the more fun. The neighbors were probably wondering why we hung a giant skull flag in our front window for the day but I don't really care. It was cool. I made up some clues for an old map and they found some cool treasure. At the end, I surprised them with a fun pirate cake that I made for the first time. It was fun for me to do and they reacted just as I'd hoped. Best of all, we got to dig right in and eat it.
After the pirate festivities were over, we cleaned up a bit and then headed to TJ's school for kindergarten registration. Yes, I said it. Kindergarten registration. I can't believe we're here. I can't believe we're at this point. And no, I did not cry. I held it together. Come August/September, however, I will undoubtedly be a wreck. I am already dreading it so much and that's all I have to say about that for now.
So, we registered the little nugget for kindergarten and THEN headed off to our next thing. Karate! TJ has been talking about doing karate for months now and we decided to try out a few places. Lots of the programs we looked into were too long or had mixed groups of adults and bigger kids too. That was too much. Some of the programs were super long or all throughout the week so those got canned quickly too. But we found a place where TJ is a Little Dragon and he goes 2-3 times a week for 30 minutes.
When we drove there, TJ could hardly hold in his excitement. If it had been dark outside, I swear he'd have been glowing. We stepped into the room for the first time and he was in awe. All the kids had their uniforms on and were obeying the instructor very well. They greeted us so nicely and invited TJ to come out and join them. He froze. Completely froze. I was not shocked...but was hoping to be pleasantly surprised by an easy transition. But after 10 minutes of hanging on my arm with his face against my body, he peeked out and watched. I kept remarking how fun it looked and how I thought he could do some of the fun things they were doing and learning. He didn't budge...but then whispered, "Okay, I'm ready to go." I said 'okay' and then asked him to put his shoes on. He said, "No, I mean I'm ready to go out there." I must have squealed because when he was retelling the story later that night, he squealed in excitement mimicking me. (Ha!) He cautiously went out onto the floor and then followed one of the students' every moves. They helped instruct him and he was so intense and so serious. And very, very proud.
Each movement is careful and precise and he had to work hard to get the kicks and blocks down. But the best part was the fact that he looked at me out of the corner of his eye after each of his practice moves. I "silent cheered" each time. One mom even told me afterward that she didn't watch her son at all this day because she was watching us...and she had tears in her eyes. It was hilariously sweet.
Anyway, TJ didn't say a word the whole time. Just focused. And I loved watching that. He ran off at the end and said he wanted to definitely sign up and so we did. We brought his new crisp, white uniform home and he practices in it every chance he gets. He cannot wait for tomorrow's karate and frankly, neither can I!