January 18, 2008

he used to sound like Minnie Mouse

I didn't want a boy. Boys are loud and smelly and like sports and fighting and they almost never look right in sundresses. But, thankfully, God knew what I needed more than I did. Anyway, today my baby is 15. Fif-stinking-teen. I am having a hard time with this one. Maybe it's because this year he looks his age. Maybe it's because he is getting tall. Maybe it's because he is shaving. Maybe it's because he likes girls now. Maybe it's because he has a definitive baritone voice (which still freaks me out a little when I talk to him on the phone, as he used to sound like Minnie Mouse.) Maybe it's because I don't see how it's possible for him to be 15 when I'm still 25. Okay, so 25 with several year's experience . . . anyway . . .

He is the best kid. Really. Not a perfect one. He's king of comebacks, his handwriting is atrocious, and . . . well, I'm sure there is SOMETHING else. BUT:
He is sweet. He is witty and FUNNY! He is thoughtful. He is not afraid of anything. He is easy to get along with. He is not a follower. He is a great worker. He NEVER complains. (This is my favorite "Kevin" quality! No matter what I ask him to do, he is more than willing to do it, and only occasionally does he roll his eyes at me!) He loves to read. He's smart. We like the same stuff, so he's fun to hang out with. (Except for sushi and Hobby Lobby - I said he's not perfect!)

Kevin is an "all or nothing" kind of guy. Always has been. He is not interested in doing something until he can do it right. It's an interesting personality trait, as it is completely opposite from his sister who will jump in and try anything and keep trying until she gets it. Kevin waits until he thinks he can master it, then he jumps in and does. He learned to read that way. Wasn't interested in learning at all, then one day we picked up a book and he said, "Oh, so you just make the letter sounds and put them together." By the end of the day he was reading on his own. Learned to tie his shoes in 5 minutes. Learned to swim in even less. The list goes on and on, but you get the idea. He won't be the first kid to jump in, but when he finally does, he'll do it right.

Kevin, you make my life joyful. I am so proud of the child you have been, the young man that you are, and the godly man you are quickly becoming.

I continue to pray that you keep your eyes on God and that He blesses you beyond what you can even imagine! Have a wonderful birthday - I love you more than life!

January 10, 2008

right below hugs & kisses

Kacey bought me a beautiful hardback copy of "Anna Karenina" for Christmas. It's the book I was reading during the last trimester of my pregnancy with her, and because it is a LONG Russian novel, it carried over into the first couple of months of her post-womb life as well. And, because I'm the amazing mother that I am (choke, gasp, cough), I of course, read the entire book out loud. No small feat for Tolstoy, not to mention that fact that for the first half of the book I was reading "alone" in the room. I never reallly did get used to doing that - always felt weird. Anyway . . .

Around month 2, I began reading books more geared to her level of appreciation. Lucky for Kacey (and for me!), my sister was taking a Children's Literature class at Harding at the same time. Every time Stacey & I talked, she would recount all the wonderful stories they were reading in class. (I'm sure there was a bit more to the class than reading children's books, but that's the only part that was important to me!) Then I would head straight to the nearest bookstore and buy every one of them. That was definitely one of my favorite parts of being a mom - reading aloud. Ranks right below hugs & kisses, and right above tickling. I would dare say there was never a day from before Kacey was born until Kevin was 10 or 11 that I didn't read out loud - with the rare exception of my having a sore throat or their being at Nana's house. And since now both my kids would rather read than do just about anything else, I guess it paid off. I miss it, though. I do still read to my high school co-op students. They like it, plus I get to say that, at 14, I still read aloud to Kevin. I'm sure he loves that.

January 06, 2008

grasping at air

Maybe you can relate: The gear shift in my car in located on the steering column. I guess most are. After you drive a vehicle for awhile, it just becomes natural to reach for the right side of the steering column when you put your car into gear. But every now and then I find myself driving a vehicle with a center console gear shift (usually my mom's Jeep). Anyway, I always reach for the steering column when I start to drive and end up grasping at air and feeling silly. Ironically, I only have to drive the Jeep for a day or two for the reverse to happen. I get back into my own car, turn the key, reach for the non-existent console gear shift, and knock over a bottle of water in the cup holder instead. Okay, so it's just habit and it makes me feel a little silly, but it's not really a big deal.

However, the same problem exists with other items like my curling iron. I use it every day. Keep it plugged in to the same spot. Can curl my hair in 3 minutes flat, almost without looking. I hold the curling iron in my right hand, lift a section of hair with the left, clamp the iron around the end (again with my right hand), and hold the very tip of the curling iron with my left hand as I wind my hair. Fine. Occasionally, however, I use a straightener. Same basic motion, except you start at the roots instead of the ends, and with the straightener you don't hold the tip - you grab both sides as you pull it firmly down through your hair. Again, fine. Until I have used the straightener for a day or two and then go back to the curling iron. You really shouldn't firmly grab both sides of a curling iron at any point in the process. Unless, of course, you are a masochist.

Just an observation and a life lesson I thought I'd pass along.

January 04, 2008

Jamaican Me Crazy!

It was one of those Friday nights back in October when I really needed to be with friends. It had been a really awful couple of months and I was just beginning to recover. I don't remember everyone who was present, but I do know Rob & ReighAnne and Mike & Sara were among the few. It started out as a "scrapbooking" night, but turned into a great night of conversation . . . and coffee. "Jamaican Me Crazy" from Kirchhoff's to be exact. We were standing around ReighAnne's little kitchen, everyone holding a mug - except me. I made a pouty lip and whined about feeling left out, so Sara grabbed a mug, poured me a cup, and handed it to me just so I would feel included. I stood there, holding the warm ceramic mug between my palms, knowing that if I wasn't careful I would forget that what I was holding was coffee and take a sip. Being the good friend that she is, and apparently knowing this as well, Sara proceeded to add creamer to my coffee "just in case". Once seated back around the dining room table, engaged in a church discussion, I did take a sip. And another. And then another. Since then I have enjoyed Kringle Krunch and Snickerdoodle (both at the Seifert's), and a single shot caramel latte from Kirchhoff's (Kacey says it's sissy coffee, but still . . . )

Sara gave me a pound of "Jamaican Me Crazy" for Christmas. I bought filters, hazelnut creamer and a thermos mug. I am officially caffeinated. There's no going back now.