Popular Posts

Sunday, May 31, 2009

How Kids Learn Bad Language

We were flipping through channels, when we came up on an old comedy- Life! Starring Eddie Murphy and Martin Lawrence. It was actually an all star cast! Well being that it was during the day and on regular television and not cable we really didn't think much about watching a little bit of it in front of our son. We just didn't think. Have I said that already?
Well when we tuned in it was right after the prisoners were loud from laughing about Ray's (Eddie Murphy) descriptive story of Ray's Boom-Boom room back in Harlem. Then the guard comes in with his lantern, and tells them to get quiet- well he actually tells them to, "Shut their mouths!" Then he turns to walk away and one prisoner (Anthony Andersen) passes gas. Well had we remembered we would have turned it then. Well if you know the movie you know what happens next.
The guard turns to respond to this passing of gas and says, "Shut your mouth and your fat a##!" (This is a family blog)
As soon as he said it, our laughs halt, Daddy flips the channel and our son laughs and repeats what he (guard) said- all in that quick moment.
Daddy and I exchanged a quick glare. We didn't respond immediately.
"Hey, I was watching that!" our just recently turned, six-year-old son said.
Daddy and I looked at each other to see who was going to respond first.
"You can't say that. That is a bad word," Daddy told him.
He was confused.
"What's a bad word Daddy?" he asked.
"What that man just said. Then you said too," I told him.
He sat and processed it.
"You can't say everything you hear someone else say. This is why we don't like for you to watch so much television and especially adult shows."
We should have gone over it a littel bit more.
A day later (Sunday of all days), we are eating at the table and he repeats it.
He and his sister are doing what they do best- teasing each other.
Then he tells her, in between bites of chicken, "Shut your a$$ up!" and laughs as if there was nothing bad about it. But I guess it should have been that way because he and his sister do not know what profanity is. Up until this point, he thought bad words were: shut it, zip it, shut up and stupid.
So it was another teachable moment.
"You cannot say bad words," we told him.
"What was a bad word?" he asked. His sister was waiting for the answer to that too.
"What you just said when you said something to your sister," I told him.
It was quiet for a moment. No one was laughing. The kids wheels were turning. Daddy and I were trying to figure out what to do next.
"I can't say bad words even when y'all aren't there?"
"No!" Daddy firmly told him. "God will tell us."
"He tell y'all everything?" he asked.
"Yep! How do you think we know about everything you do, even when we ain't there?" Daddy asked him.
"Oh. That's how you knew about me talking back to grandma?" he asked.
Before we could respond, his sister jumped in.
"Actually I told on you about that."
Daddy and I didn't know anything about that.
"And actually (looking around) he talked back to me too," his sister added.
We had to explain to her that she was not an adult so that would be different.
"Well actually I AM older than he is," she suggested.
At this point I felt that we were gettin away from the main point and needed to draw us back in.
"Well actually you can stop talking!" I firmly said.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Leaving A Legacy

I know you are accustomed to reading humorous stories about Dude, Thing 1 and Thing 2- or Daddy and our two kids but this post will be a little bit different.
Today was my cousin's funeral. She and I were born the same day- same year! So she was just 37 but she left a nice legacy. One that her three young children and the rest of her family will be proud of. She touched myriad people in her short time here but we all know that God knows best.
Hearing people talk about her made my heart smile and got me thinking... What Will My Legacy Be? And especially for my kids.
We know that we can talk to kids 'till we are blue in the face but we have to remember that they sometimes do what we say but more often they do what they see us do.
It will soon be summer- time to hit the beach for some of us! Picture yourself walking on the beach, leaving your footprints in the sand. Then your child follows behind you- stepping in the prints you leave behind. Are you doing things that you want your child to see? Things that you want them to follow?
My cousin really loved life and showed it in everything she did. This trickled down to her kids. We, as parents, have this great gift! The chance to shape and mold our offspring in the way that we want. We may not always get it right but if we set the foundation... they will be okay. Sometimes they may veer off the road but we can trust that they will get back on.
They learn best from us- and we need to be their main teachers. We must be mindful of what we are doing and that they are watching and many times, whether we realize it or not, they are wanting to be like us. They are walking in our footsteps.
So again are we being cognizant of what we are doing and what we are passing on? We want to do things that others will talk about when we are gone. We want to leave a great legacy!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Beekeeper!

Okay last week our son tried to sneak something in the house.
"Uh wait, wait, wait a minute. What do you have there?" I asked him as he came in, not making any eye contact.
I knew he was up to something because he kept hanging around the front door and looking in at us. I never saw his hands when he looked in. He needs to up his game.
"What?" he replied, looking all around himself.
"Don't play with us. You know what your mama is talking about! Whatever is in that box you got behind your back- that's what!" Daddy added.
He didn't even answer. Defeated, he didn't even answer. He just dropped his head and headed back outside.
"What was in there?" Daddy shouted.
"Ants," he answered.
I couldn't believe it. And we have fire ants in our yard around this time of year.
Daddy giggled and shook his head, "He's all boy!"
Well today he was excited that he caught something in his bug catcher. Last time he used it he caught a lady bug and named her Lilly. We made him let her free after a few minutes. He just knew he saw her MONTHS later on the playground at school. He couldn't trust me when I explained that there are myriad ladybugs in the world and there was as strong possibility that it was not Lilly.
Nope. He knows everything!
He didn't catch a ladybug this time.
"Mama! Daddy! He gots a bee in there and he says he's gonna put it on my face!" Our daughter ran into the garage crying.
Daddy- well Dude today because he was not helping me as much as he should have. Dude and I were in the garage cleaning. Well I was cleaning.
He chased her around my van.
"Stop it! Leave her alone! You know she is scared of anything that flies!" I told him.
I assured her that he was not going to do anything to her.
"He just wants to scare you!" I added.
"No I'm gonna scare you mama!" he said.
Oh I could hear Dude trying to smother his laugh. I wanted to help with the smothering!
"I'm not scared of bees, mouth! I know to just leave 'em alone." "You're gonna get your little butt stung!"
His sister laughed hysterically.
"You're gonna get stung on your b-u-t-t!" she teased.
"And don't tell your sister you're gonna put the bee on her face!" I scolded.
"I didn't say that!" he adamantly said.
"Oh okay well leave her alone anyway," Dude told him.
"I said I was gonna pIt the bee on her mouth and let him sting her mouF off," he said, while shaking the bee held captive in his bug catcher.
"Bees don't sting boys," he glared at his sister. "They only sting girls!" he smiled.
I know it's not right, but for a minute I wanted that bee to get out and chase him around the yard then sting him one good time.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Negotiator

We warned our son that he would get a spankin' if he did not have a good day in school. The day before, he did not have a good day, and while I know it is Spring and nearing the end of school, so kids are getting a little "beside" themselves- we don't want him cutting up in school. He likes to tell us what other students did in class and how they got in trouble too.
We tell him the same thing each time, "We don't have anything to do with 'other' kids. They don't live in our house!"
Well he did not have a good day so we had to follow through on what we said and Daddy had to spank him. His sister- again being the compassionate child she is- gets upset when he gets spankings. Yet he will try to get a front row seat when it is her turn. For some reason that doesn't change a thing for her. Oh but when my younger brother would get "it" I would run to get a branch- not a switch- for our mom to use on him. And he did the same for me.
She started tearing up before Daddy and her brother had "the talk" so I got her out of the house. Okay I was a little upset too so we went to the garage and listened to some music. For some reason it does not bother me to spank them but it does when Daddy gets them. And "the talks" are worse to me than the spankings. I mean get it over with already so we can move on. My mom talked while she was spanking! Then she would make me take a nap! I remember waking up later feeling like I'd been born again! Back to the story...
So Daddy talks to him about why he was getting a spanking. Then when it was time for the spanking, our son wants to talk more.
"Daddy. Are you gonna spank me soft or hard?"
"Well I can't spank you soft son."
"Okay well are you gonna spank me hard or SUPER hard?"
"Come on and get it over with," Daddy told him.
He began to plead with him.
"Okay wait. Do you want me to stand up or do I have to lay over your lap?"
While he said this he began backing up toward his closet.
"Now you better not try to run in a corner in your closet or you will get it worse!" Daddy told him.
"Okay! Okay!" he cried then fell to pieces on the floor.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Turtles On The Move!

Our son's birthday was just a few weeks ago. He wanted a turtle. He got one and named it Myrtle! The day of his birthday party he got a second turtle and named it (drum roll please)... Myrtle. Both turtles belonged to the same family and they will be moving out-of-state soon so they gave them to us! They said the second one seemed sad without its friend, relative- not sure how they are related. They are both cute little red-eared sliders!
I've never been into turtles but these little creatures have grown on us. Besides, unlike the other two we are raising outside of an aquarium, they can't talk, don't eat much, and you can look at 'em through a glass for a few minutes then walk away. Low maintenance!
Well it was Dude's idea to allow Myrtle I and Myrtle II to stay in our son's room. I didn't like it but I knew it wouldn't last long. I warned him (son) nicely!
"You got one time to not be responsible and they will be coming out of here!"
"You just gone throw them outside?" he asked.
"You know what I mean!" I replied.
And Dude never trusted him with them. He hid the food from him.
Well it did not last long.
Now I know that sometimes they (he and his sister) take the turtles out to play with them and we explained the whole deal about salmonella and washing their hands thoroughly so it had not been a problem... until Sunday night.
It was bedtime.
Our daughter stands in the doorway of our bedroom attempting to look innocent.
"Mama," she said softly. "We can't find one of the turtles."
"What do you mean you can't find a turtle? And why are you talking so low?" I asked.
She is never quiet.
Dude was in his favorite spot... on the couch. I nicely woke him.
"DADDY! Get up. Your kids have lost one of the turtles!"
He jumped up like he usually does- boxing the air.
Once he finally realized where he was and what I said, he smacked his lips and ran upstairs- fussing along the way.
"How long has the turtle been lost?" I asked the kids.
"Well we-" our daughter began.
"You know what. Don't say nothin'. I can't believe this. Y'all have lost a turtle in the house. I mean he could be pooping somewhere!" I scolded.
"Who let the turtle out?" I added.
"Um... well I-" our son tried to chime in.
"Didn't I say not to say nothin'?"
After about 10 minutes our son found one of the Myrtles. He was behind his Batman cave. Just chillin' inside his shell.
Poor thing. As soon as Dude put him back in the water he was all over that aquarium. If he could have talked I know he would have said,
"I gots to go! These people are crazy! Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello- where are y'all?"
We didn't move the little Ninjas then but not long after that our son struck again.
I went into his room for inspection. The room was fairly clean. But something just didn't feel quite right. Ya ever get that feeling? Anyway... I looked over at the aquarium. There were bubbles- suds in the water. Myrtle and Myrtle had their little heads out of the water. Normally when I would walk in there near them they went to the bottom.
They'd had enough!
"DADDY!" I yelled.
He and his sister came in and looked shocked. Like they were looking at the suds for the first time.
Before I could ask anything our son said, "I didn't did that."
"You didn't did that?" I laughed.
Mothers have good instincts and mine were saying from the look of him playing with his fingers and not being able to make eye contact- that he was guilty.
"Look at this! Why is there a paper towel over in here near the filter?" Dude asked.
His sister sang like a bird.
She explained that her brother used some of the soap from their bathroom then tried to get it out with that paper towel. The little rascal didn't think to get the paper towel out. He did not get that from his mama.
I conveniently had some work to do so I slipped away while Dude cleaned up everything and moved the turtles downstairs where we could keep an eye on them better.
The turtles didn't last twenty days in his room. I knew it!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Bopping and Driving!

Okay I have to just come clean. I did it! I finally did it! It had been building up for some time now and I may have mentioned earlier that I wanted to get her.
I mean she had been under the radar far too long. Always having something to say but not big enough to hang around to back it up. Coming around at inconvenient times.
I had been waiting for the right moment to get her! I knew I needed a somewhat confined place.
I seized my opportunity... in the van!
We were coming up the hill, just a block or two away from the house when she opened that mouth again. I didn't hear her but her best friend did and reacted to her. I'd just finished fussing about the kids cleaning their rooms when we got home.
"What? I know you don't like cleaning either but you can't say that about my mama," my daughter giggled, while peering at me in my mirror.
I knew they were talking about me and they wanted to make sure I was listening.
Well I was and it was on.
I smiled and asked my daughter to let her buddy come sit up front beside me.
I could see skepticism in her eyes but she coerced her to go.
When I thought she was in the seat I bopped her close to her mouth- several times. Before she could catch her breath I started choking her off! I swerved a little but quickly got back across the yellow lines.
It felt GRRRRRRReat! And I wasn't done. I saw my pocket book nearby so I hit her a few times with it.
Our son laughed so hard!
His sister was speechless for once.
She didn't say anything until we pulled into the garage.
"Mama we should probably take Wilbur to the hospital."
I was in too deep now. I continued to play the game right along with my daugther.
"We can't. She not on our insurance," I told her.
The next day, I asked her (daughter) where Wilbur was. I thought surely I'd gotten rid of her.
"She's in the back seat with a cast on her neck!" she screeched. "Thanks to mama!"
She looked at me funny in the mirror. For a minute I felt crazy for going there over a make-believe friend.
I looked back at her in the mirror-
"Well that can happen to anyone. Real people too!"

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A Hairy Tale

I should've learned when our daughter was about five that we cannot let Daddy know everything.
When she was five he about had a nervous breakdown when he heard me tell her to wash her... (pretend you hear the ever popular music from Jaws- when the shark is coming) vagina!
He just could not deal with her saying or being familiar with the word. Even though most of us are big boys and girls and we know that is what females have. Nope his daughter has a "pocket book". You'll have to read my earlier blogs to get that story. Trust me it is hilarious.
Well I didn't learn.
Our daughter has some hair under her arms and he has freaked!
"WHAT?" he screeched.
He ran into the bathroom to investigate. You would have thought she was hurt and needed to be rushed to the emergency room.
"Do we need to make her an appointment to see the doctor?" he asked.
She just giggled. She enjoyed torturing him by raising her arms up so he could get a close look at the HAIRS (pretend you hear the music from Psycho- shower scene)!
"It's not funny!" he hurled.
"Calm down Dude! She ain't the only little girl who has started sprouting little hairs early!" I told him.
He would not let it go.
And I wanted to have fun so I said, "She has some more hair too."
I thought he would pass out.
"On her head," I whispered.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

L Words Getting Better!

I have told our daughter myriad times that her brother does and says things just to get under her skin.
"But Mama...(looking at her skin) he can't get under my skin. That would hurt!"
"Whatever. You know what I mean!" I'd sternly answer.
Still she gets upset- to his amusement.
We were in the car when Daddy noticed two huge birds flying nearby.
"Look!" he pointed out. "Look at those two birds. They look like they are playing with each other!"
Oh she was taken by this.
"Wow! You are right Daddy- they do look like they are playing. God's creatures are so pretty!"
She's such a sweet-spirited child.
"They keep flying around in circles over that field," she added. "Awww... I think they are Eagles!" she tried to inform us.
We knew they weren't Eagles but it didn't matter. We weren't gonna take her joy away.
But her brother could care less. He never sees the beauty around him like she and I do! ;o)
Not missing a beat from the artwork he was creating in the seat beside his sister, he said,
"She wieing. Dem ain't no Eagles. They look like just some buzzards."
Daddy and I just looked straight ahead at the road. We didn't say a word.
She was upset.
"No they are too Eagles! See how they-" she started.
"Nope. They are not pretty and they are not Eagles," he interrupted.
"Mama! Daddy! Will you tell him- well you don't know nothin' anyway!" she yelled.
At that point we had to jump in.
"Okay. Okay! We are not gonna start that now!" I told them. "And you need to remember to stick your tongue out to pronounce your "L" words. It's L-L-Lied. But you aren't supposed to use that word!"
I turned to look at him to make sure he understood.
"L-L-LIED," he said with his tongue out.
He actually did do well with the "L" that time.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all mothers reading this post!
All I wanted today was to be able to do nothing- just to relax and not worry about a thing. I got it! I took a long nap after eating out and I have been just sitting... doing nothing all day. We need that sometimes. Our plates are so full of cares for others that we don't take care of ourselves. But we need to put ourselves first. It does not mean we are selfish. As the old adage says, "If mama ain't happy- nobody is happy!"
Think about it. When we are stressed from our daily routine of myriad things we do, that stress can become agitation and that may cause us to be short with our families, our energy is zapped so we may not be able to interact much with our kids and Lord knows by the end of the day when we are dog-tired we certainly ain't in a "loving" mood for our spouses. So husbands if you are reading this- HELP US OUT! Help to lighten our loads. Then maybe you would get more! I'm sure that got some people's attention.
Of course this post would not be complete without a little humor. And with our two little ones, we have plenty of it.
This morning our newly turned six-year-old told me Happy Mother's Day, then quickly followed with, "Mama. When is son's day?"
"Uh, you get a day everyday son. You ain't got any bills, someone takes great care of you. You get hugs galore. You got it made everyday," I told him.
Surprisingly he didn't have anything to say to that.
So we are going to church and I turn to them (he and his sister) and tell them that I may have to say something in church. Our pastor asked a few moms in the church to sit in on a panel to talk about things pertaining to being a mom. It was an honor and I couldn't say no but how I get nervous speaking in front of a lot of people. Our church has almost one thousand.
"Oh mama you will be okay. You may just have a little stage fright so you just take a deep breath and blow it out slowly," our compassionate, sweet daughter advised.
I smiled, looked out the window and took it in.
Then her brother chimed in.
"Mama. I don't care if you get nervous and I ain't gone cover for you," he said nonchalantly, while drawing in his little notebook.
He never looked up at me and meant every word he said. So brutally honest at all times.

Monday, May 04, 2009

People in Costumes- No Way!

Okay I mentioned that our son turned six yesterday. Well I did not mention his party. Now he is like me when it comes to talking junk- Dude (when am I not mad at him about somethin' okay) can describe my son and I, so well.

"Oh y'all bad in the daylight but let it get dark!" he always balks.

Well our son has a fear of people in costumes. Everyone in costumes.
When we went to Disney World for the first time, two years ago, he didn't waist any time gettin' away from Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dumb. I mean I didn't know he could move that fast. I looked around and he was over in the roped off area- where he wasn't supposed to be, breathing heavily.

In my sweet, calm, motherly voice I tried to coerce him into climbing over the rope.

"Get your little butt from over there boy before you get us kicked out of Magic Kingdom!"

He wasn't having it initially.

"Come on- we will go the other way and wait for them (Daddy and his sister) to finish," I told him as I snatched him by the wrist.

They were in line to get the Tweedles' autograph and pictures.

He came on but looked back frantically to make sure their images were getting smaller as we walked further away.

Let's just run down a list of people he is scared of: Santa, Easter Bunny, Mickey & Minnie and all their people, the Chick-Fil-A cow, the cell phone dude at our church fall festival- and you could see the person's ashy knees below the phone costume, and... Chuck-E-Cheese!

Yet he requested a party there. Hmmm... Hmmmm

We talked to him about it and because the small county where we reside has very few places to have parties for kids, we decided to have a party there.

"Now look- I don't wanna hear no crying when that rat comes out!" I told him.

Oh but he was bad-

"Mama I ain't gonna be scared. I'm gonna be six and be a big boy."

Yes he talked a good game up until we drove up in the parking lot of the place.

We argued about it a bit in the car then I ended it-

"Look! You wanted it and your friends are coming now so we gotta go in!"

"Okay," he said. "When Chuck-E comes out I will just go hide in that playhouse. He can't fit in there."

Of course he was apprehensive going in. Luckily our hostess informed us that the rat wasn't coming out until 4pm which was shortly before the end of our time there. So he went and freely played with his friends.

"Wook mama!" he said while shaking his little behind- being silly.

"There go Chuck-E," I said being funny.

He was ready to take off.

When the rat did come out he was gone in a flash!

He was hiding up top in the treehouse as planned. It was so sweet though. I thought his friends would tease him but everyone who came from his class, were right up there with him.

Back in the day my friends would have been laughing at me about something like that.

The parents were giggling. I mean it looked absolutely ridiculous- the birthday boy hiding from the rat when he was supposed to be on the little dance floor being a star with the rat.

Luckily Dude filmed it! Can't wait to pull it out 20 years from now when he goes on his FIRST date.

Friday, May 01, 2009

We Found a Turtle!

I am so relieved! All our son wanted for his birthday was a turtle. Daddy has been searching for weeks to find him one. We had a few friends in on the search as well.
One of Daddy's (high school) students found one. But it was a snapping turtle. My eyebrows went up initially. I thought, "This may be good. It won't hurt the boy to get one snap, as much as he talks lately."
But the rational parent part of my brain kicked back in and declined. Actually we were gonna keep that one on stand-by just in case we could not find one in time. Today is Friday and his birthday is Sunday. We almost gave up hope.
Then today I bumped into a parent of a child in our son's class. She was talking about his birthday party. While talking about it she asked what he was into or what he wanted for his birthday.
"All he wants is a turtle," I laughed. "And we are having a time finding one."
The mom bent down to her daughter.
"You wanna give him one of our turtles?" she asked.
Surprisingly and fortunately the little girl said yes! And they came back 15 minutes later with the turtle, a year's supply of food, a book on red eared sliders, and a short informational session on its care. What a blessing!!
The family is moving to Las Vegas in a few weeks and were planning to free their turtles- they have a second one- before they leave. So this worked out so well. The may give us the second one closer to their departure.
So our son has been so engaged with this turtle. We have already gone out and purchased some items for "Myrtle's" new home. That was our son's name for the turtle.
"What if he poops on me?" he has asked. He and his sister thinks it is the funniest thing to say the word "poop".
"Mama! Myrtle is probably gonna have babies soon and lay some eggs," he suggested.
Before I thought about it I opened that door-
"Naw. Myrtle needs a mate to do that."
"But how the turtles gonna get married and have babies?"
Before I could answer he suggested something else-
"Mama. Can you and Daddy get married again so you can have another baby? I want a baby brother."
"No baby. Myrtle is your new brother," I smiled. "Be happy with that."
"Mama... Myrtle is a girl." "MYRTLE," he emphasized. "Dove."