Relishing the End of Our Summer

I’ve really enjoyed this summer. We’ve been burning the candle at both ends, in some ways, but it’s been a really fun, hectic, exciting, yet still relaxing summer. I definitely feel like we gave the kids a good time, made enough time for some dates, read a lot of books, and got a lot done around the house/yard.

Spending an unexpected week at our favorite beach was a definite highlight – shout out to our friends who let us rent their timeshare from them for a week! Bringing the kids to the beach Hubby grew up visiting was really special for all of us… including their first miniature golf experience! The beach is a good place for that.

We spent a lovely week at the lake with Hubby’s whole family, and had TONS of cousin time. Our kids got to fish, feed turtles, ride the boat (a lot!), swim “across the ocean” (basically between two of the docks), and spend a couple of mornings tubing! It was great to see them all playing together and even relaxing a bit.

We got to visit my parents’ house (the house I grew up in) once more before it sold… and we actually got to be there when it went under contract. We must’ve been a good luck charm!

Now that kindergarten has begun, and preschool will begin for the boys next week, I’m down to visiting the pool for the last few times and hitting up our favorite parks again before our schedules get crazy. We’ve done extra play dates with friends and chased our favorite food truck around town (seriously, my kids love the Bahtmobile!) and now we’re preparing for what will feel like a slow down, but will really just be a settling into routine. I’m thankful to have arrived safely at this point: back to a routine, to learning, to doing new things. It’s going to be a good year.

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday! Thanks for all the love on my poem about kindergarten. Y’all are really too sweet… it was easier to get my feelings out in poetry than prose (and add that to the list of things I never thought I’d say). I must say, this week was a slow one for the funnies, but it was a lot of preparing for school and really soaking up time with all five of us. I hope your kids have had a great first couple of days at school – and that all the parents had a nice first couple of days without them! Here are the quotations of the week!

Overheard at the breakfast table…
J: I’m Mr. Boil, the popcorn chef!
(We then kept the Mr. Boil ruse going for another two hours that day.)

EK: Can we catch fireflies sometime? We’re gonna do it like this: I’m gonna flick the lights, and the real fireflies will think it’s their family, and you guys will catch them!

Hubby: Come on, let’s get in the car!
J: Nooooo!
Hubby: But we need to take EK to school on her first day!
J: I don’t wanna go to school!
Hubby: We’re just walking EK in and then coming back home.
J: *relieved giggle* Ooohhh…

At bedtime, EK’s prayer song: I pray that I would one day be an adult and I’d find a man to dance with who is also an adult (still singing, mind you). I’ll say “truth” and you say “Jesus”. Now stomp your feet for hooray!
*almost literally 20 minutes later*
EK: How did you like my song?
Me: It was great!
EK: It was called “My Bright King Lord”.
Me: ……..
Y’all.

J, randomly this morning: Hey! Listen to this! Davy the baby and Katie the lady!
Hubby: Um, good rhyming.

Well there it is, short and sweet. What things have your kids said recently?

‘Twas the First Day of Kindergarten

‘Twas the First Day of Kindergarten: An Ode to Parents’ Feelings

‘Twas the first day of kindergarten,
And all through the town
The fathers and mothers were
Not at all sitting down.
They were packing the lunches
And setting out clothes,
Filling the water bottles
And wiping their nose.
For, you see, they were trying
To keep themselves busy
So it’d be easier to hide
All the crying and wishing
For just one more day
With their sweet little dears.
So they washed some more dishes
To hide the falling tears.

But then they remembered
The tantrums and tears
Over small things and large things
Like scratches or fears.
They’d make mountains of molehills
And things inconsequential.
They kept saying, “MOM!”
Till there was potential
For a nervous breakdown!
Or at least an explosion
Of some stressful shouting
That would cause a commotion.
They remembered those times
That they’d almost forgotten,
Of cleaning up messes
And wiping all the bottoms.

But between feelings of love,
And feelings of relief,
The parents would still know
That the school day is brief.
Their children would return,
Tired but happy.
They’d want to chat, have a snuggle,
And maybe take a nappy.
Then it’s dinner, and a bath,
And send them off to their beds,
The moms and dads needing
To rest their own heads.

It takes energy to love
All those little ones well,
And to worry and fret
Over healthy food or weird smells.
We’re entrusted these kids
For the shortest of seasons.
How can we not also
Give hundreds of reasons
To be protective and kind,
Giving all the hugs and kisses?
One day they’ll be grown,
And we’ll be the ones who miss them.

I wrote a song.

This post originally appeared on Everyday Exiles.

A few months ago, I went to a worship leading conference with Paul Baloche. (Hey, Paul! You’re great! No, we didn’t meet. But yeah, I love you. Totally.) Anyway, I ended up in his songwriting workshop. Before I go on, let me make myself clear: I have never fashioned myself a songwriter. I was a music major in college, complete with composition classes and arranging classes and task-oriented composing all through theory classes and the like. But no assignment or little ditty I wrote was ever very good. I have never assumed that if I sat down to write an actual song, something would actually come out.

That being said, this songwriting workshop inspired me to give it a go. I actually had a moment of inspiration (weakness?) where I thought up a couplet in my head. Isn’t that how the greats do it? “I like mine with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57 and French-fried potatoes…” Anyway, so this couplet just popped into my head, and I made a voice reminder on my iPhone with it. You know, so I wouldn’t forget.

Well, that turned into me digging in the Psalms, texting back and forth with my worship pastor (ever the encouraging friend) and making my husband tell me if it sounded like crap. Which turned out to be him saying that it didn’t sound like crap! It was about a week-long process of simultaneously being unable to stop thinking about and wanting it to be finished but not knowing how to get there.

Paul Baloche’s suggestions were all things like “Keep writing even if it’s not good.” and “You’ll write a hundred bad songs for every good one.” and “Use your journal for inspiration.” which was how I had come up with that couplet: journaling. I used to have time for journaling a lot, but since having kids, and then staying home with them, I somehow have less time than I used to (cue all the moms cry-laughing, agreeing with the lack of time). But when I do sit down to do it, it tends to be heavier, albeit shorter. But just a moment of me writing my prayers landed me in a songwriting mood, culminating in an actual completed song. I guess there’s no reason I should’ve been so hard on myself about it, since I did really enjoy the process. I’m a little nervous that like Paul said, now that I’ve got one song that didn’t totally suck, the next hundred will be bad ones. But if my heart is in the right place, and I’m writing something because I’m worshiping Jesus, it’ll be pleasing to Him anyway.

Things Toddlers Say 

Happy Tuesday y’all! Who eclipsed around here?! The bigs and I wore our glasses and waited on the back porch for the sun to disappear… which it didn’t quite as much as I thought. But two funny things happened: I never could explain that the crescent was the sun and not the moon, and EK danced around for a hour shouting, “They’re disappearing!!!!!!” So there was that. Here are the rest of the funnies!

J: Can we go back and change D’s diaper?
Hubby: Why?
J: He pooped.
Hubby: How do you know?
J: Because he poops all the time.

J, explaining potty training to his cousin: You just point your hiney stick down toward the water and pee in the potty!

Me, to the kids: I’m sorry I was angry.
J: it’s okay, but your eyebrows are still pointed at your eyes.

EK: Did you just drop that (bok choy) in the floor?
Hubby: Yeah, I guess so. Silly me!
EK: Maybe you don’t know how to cook after all.


EK: That’s me and J on a horse and we went past a river, and past a waterfall, and then we were home!
Everyone: Literally none of us can draw as well as you can.

J, in a tattletale voice: J is hitting myself!
Me: Umm…

EK, putting on a new dress: It’s so soaky! (Silky)

Everyone’s new favorite saying: You’ve gotta be kidding me!
Everyone’s new favorite movie: Baby Boss (I literally haven’t watched it. They see it when Daddy’s on duty.)
D’s favorite new thing: No tanks. (As in response to any kind of food, sleep, or hygiene. Cool.)

Well that’s all there is today, folks! Enjoy your week!

Things Toddlers Say 

Happy Tuesday, y’all! I hope your last bit of summer is relaxing, as ours will hopefully be over the next two weeks. We are all done traveling for a while, thank goodness. Here are the week’s funnies!img_3843

EK: When we get inside, do you want me to tell you about the helmet of the armor of God?
J: No, I don’t wear helmets.


D, pointing to the cockatoo: I wan’ toggle cockadoodle!

EK: When I get to kindergarten, I gotta stop doing baby things, do my ABCs (she’s ticking these items off on her fingers as she lists), be nice to my brothers, do what I’m supposed to do… then I’ll be doing the kindergarten thing.
Me: You sure will!

D, about five times in a row, holding his hand out: Too so! Too so! Too so!
Me, finally figuring it out: Too slow! Oh!
He wanted to play the high five game: up high, down low, in the middle, too slow!

Watching Star Wars Episode II, and I’m reading the beginning aloud…
Me: …mysterious Count Dooku…
J: *snickering*
Me: …to help the overwhelmed Jedi…
J: Well that was a lot of words.

EK, trying to tell me about Amidala: I love Queen Mazilla.

EK: I shared my blueberries with J!
J: Yeah! I asked her for some and she thinked about it, and den she said yes!

D runs up in a hat…
J: Looks like pirate D is here.

EK planned Hubby and me a “date” and then asked us to dress appropriately (aka gave us heels and a tie, respectively).Then she took J on that same date.

EK: Can we stay up till bednight?
Me: Do you mean midnight?
J: There’s many scary creatures at the midnight in the darkness… like the uglyfish. And a stinky sock! And like a shrimp!

The other night, D spent five minutes holding up different colors blocks and shouting: “Mooooom! Mooooom! Blue? Mooooom! Mooooom! Geen?” (And so on.)
Then earlier today, he spent 5 minutes sitting still on his tricycle as I tried to read my book, screaming, “Moooooom!” until I looked at him. I’ve come to the conclusion he needs a lot of affirmation right now.

Well, what are you kids saying these days??

Things Toddlers Say 

Hello, Tuesday! We’ve had an awesome week of vacation, being separated from our technology most of the time, hands and feet turning all pruny in Lake Norman. Today it’s back to reality, but here are a few of the things I managed to write down this week. Enjoy!

J, matter-of-factly : I just like calling my cousin “bro”.

J: I made a telescope! (a bunch of square magnets with holes in the middle all in a row)
Hubby: How far can you see?
J: I can see all the way to the clock. And you can’t see anything without it but I can see really far with it.
Me: At least he has the right idea what a telescope is?

D: *kisses J*
J: He’s giving me love kisses! I’m getting covered in love kisses!

J: I’ll make you a rainbow out of these blocks. You just make sure they don’t match and that’s how you make a rainbow.
Me: Yeah, that’s almost it.

D’s new words:
tuggle=snuggle
woe-woe=yellow
Pickey Moss=Mickey Mouse

J: Gon Gon (his grandad) I have something important to telled you. Your food is really good.

EK: I don’t like it when people jump on my bed.

Me: Then why do you jump on your bed?

J: Mama, daddy, do you speak Chinese?

Me: Ni hao ma? (Which means “how are you?”)

J: Ne hsu ma hsu hsu ma ma eeeeeee! Chineeeeeeeese!

EK, bringing me an envelope: Mama, can I open this antelope?

J’s new thing is repetition games. Such as: when he’s putting on his clothes, he holds up each item, “Is this my shirt? Is this my pants? Is this my socks?” until we’ve affirmed each item with its correct name. Or he will hold up some blocks, one by one, “Is this a square? Is this a square? Is this a square?!” with increasing excitement each time. This morning it was doing several different actions/sounds and asking, “Is this loud? Is this loud?”

What silly or weird things do your kids do?