Monday, April 25, 2011

Some days...

Some days....

Some days I think back to when my kiddos were so much younger than they are now. I think back to the time when I had three rambunctious little boys that were full of energy, curiosity and life. Back to the days of living in Iowa when our home was on the third floor of an apartment complex where all of the other med. students lived. We had a tiny three bedroom apartment. The boys shared one bedroom, none of them would sleep without his brothers. It was small and crowded, but it was home to us.

Where did those little boys go and how did they all grow up so quickly?

My sweet Alex who loved trains, you could almost see the wheels spinning in his head every time he asked a question full of insight and wonder. My little boy who tried to lay down while eating an ice cream cone, with a result of having a big scoop of ice cream on his face. I remember laughing and asking him "Alex, what are you doing?" His response, possibly a foreshadowing of his grumpy teenage self, "I'm laying here with a bunch of cold ice cream all over my face, what does it look like I am doing?"

I remember the days of him coming home from preschool, ready for his lunch: a toasted cheese sandwich and cup of juice. I think that is what he had for lunch every day for at least a year. That was his comfort zone... a place he tries so desperately to find nowadays. He was so young then, something I did not appreciate at the time, too busy caring for other children who also needed my attention.

Good old Jerma-- my mellow fellow. Always so laid back and happy, easy - going and pleasant. One night he stayed awake a little longer than the other two boys and filled our night with laughter. He told us all sorts of tales. He told us he could fly " All I have to do is get in an airplane, and I can fly " He explained to me how he did not like pajamas, they made him sleepy. He asked how Alex was able to wake the sun up every morning.

He was the boy who heard Grandma was sending us a package and wanted to go ride his bike in the parking lot until it arrived. I call him the buffer, sent here between Alex and Kyle by Heavenly Father so all three boys would make it through this life alive and healthy.

Kyle, my feisty, independent little boy who always preferred his dad over me. My wise, wonderful and very young husband once explained to me the reason Kyle preferred him over me. It all came down to me not being able to breast feed Kyle. Just the boost of confidence a mother needs. Kyle threw a full blown tantrum every morning James left for school or to study... that would be 6 mornings a week if I remember correctly. One Sunday, James was asked to give the closing prayer in Sacrament Meeting. I had to haul a red-faced screaming Kyle out of the meeting before the prayer even began, due to his separation anxiety. He loved his daddy.

He always had to keep up with the big boys. One day after a long afternoon of playing in the sand pile, Kyle insisted on walking up all three flights of stairs by himself, plastic sword in hand. He made it all the way up, asked for a drink of water and sat on the couch. By time I had a cup of water for him, he was sound asleep, holding onto his coveted sword, his sandy shoes still on. But, he made it up every one of those steps by himself.

I look at these young men and wonder where all of the time went? My grandma used to tell me to enjoy my children while I could, they would be grown and gone before I knew it. I used to wonder how I would make it through one more afternoon. I could not imagine them as teenagers, or even out of my sight for more than a few moments. I used to plead with them to all lay down and take a nap, at the same time, just for a few minutes, so I could get a few moments of rest in myself. What I wouldn't give for just one of those long, tiring days now. I would read just one more book, go to one more play group, spend a little more time at the play ground. I would enjoy bath time, times three, cuddle with them a little longer when they were all warm in their cozy pajamas. Bedtime would not be a hussled hassle, but a cherished time of peace and comfort.

My boys are grown now. They are hairy, loud, smelly... sulky, moody, faced with challenges that I could not have imagined. They get teeth knocked out, knees blown out, they are told no by silly teenage girls who want to stay home from prom for some inexplicable reason. I mean really, who could say no to one of my handsome sons?

They go to seminary at 5:45 every morning, play football, rugby, track, soccer, wrestle, win at scholar bowl and science bowl, play piano, trumpet, saxophone and guitar. Their little sisters adore them and their littlest brother wishes he could be one of them. They are either driving, waiting to drive or can't wait to drive one day soon. They hold the priesthood, bless the sacrament, are Eagle Scouts ( or soon will be ), are scared to go on missions, want to move out as soon as they can, but want to stay home just a little longer.

They were my little boys, they are my young men and will always be my greatest blessings.

Be Grateful!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Soccer, Our Temple and an Analogy

If I was super spiffy, I would be able to organize all of these photos to go along with my title smoothly, but I am not spiffy-- so I will have to type my random thoughts, randomly.

So here is Kyle, or Coolio as I often call him playing in one of many soccer games. Currently, life is all about soccer, track and rugby. We do throw an occasional piano lesson and Scholar Bowl in here and there just for some diversification-- but soccer owns us right now.


One great blessing we have every time we head on over to the soccer fields is this marvelous view-- it is always a thrill to see " our " temple high on a hill top
( sadly, no mountains here in Missouri ). Isn't it glorious?

Next is my random thought/analogy of the day. I looked out my window the other day and noticed the huge difference in the two trees pictured here. And ya know... somedays I truly feel like the tree on the right. Everyone else seems to have big beautiful blossoms, straight limbs and beauty abounding. Then there is poor, pitiful me. No blossoms, a broken branch and just a few reddish-brown, plain leaves here and there, no bloomin' beauty to be found.

Now, I realize we are all beautiful in our own unique ways-- but there are days where I feel I just can't compare.
Oh well..

Here we have The Man... doing his best to live in Coolio's shadow. I can't tell you how many times he/we/I have heard " Are you as good as your brother?" The answer varies, depending on Brandon's confidence level. It usually includes, " No one is as fast as Kyle". 'Aint that the truth!

Dream come true: Starting Goalie!!

Kyle's team's pre-game inspection-- they sure have grown in four years!

This is always fun-- watching the big Milan players warming up with the little guys. Love it every time!!