Sunday, August 28, 2011

Day 4 at the Beach

The day started with plenty of time in the water and in the sand. We definitely are, by definition "Beach Bums"! Many people I know go to the beach and spend at least one day doing other things and never go to the shore. Not our family! If we don't spend at least 5 hours a day on the beach we have wasted the day! 
Daniel, the newest member of the Beach Bums, fit right into the family.
Ouch! Daredevil he IS! Don't be fooled. Not even a nose dive like this will keep this kid out of the water.
Maylin enjoyed the water and waves with no fear, however she REALLY loved spending time building sand castles or just digging holes.
Daniel likes to pull things... anything...
Kylie contributing to the castle building.
"That's not exactly right Daddy." Maylin inspects Pierson and Daddy's architecture. Notice the cute sun visors the kids are sporting. Thanks Grandma! They love them!

Pierson is very proud of his final masterpiece complete with bridges, moats, walls and towers. He is my little future engineer.

As much as this family likes the sand and surf I would be remiss not to mention the fact that we also greatly appreciate the food available to consume at the beach.
These cutie pies are kicking their feet not because they know they are the cutest girls in town but because they know they are about to consume crab legs! 
Every year we head out to get delectable crab legs! It is something we all look forward to! 
Can't you feel Caleb's enthusiasm? Poor little guy. This is what he looked like until the moment the food came out. 
Uncle Adam don't do it!
Oh wait he liked it! : )
 This little guy is quickly becoming the clown of the family! He does things just to make other people laugh. I think he and Pierson will be quite a pair when they get a little older!
Pierson was enjoying the view from his seat at dinner. I am not sure which he enjoyed more the food or watching the turtles in the water?
6 Caucasian adults (Kristi was taking the picture) and 6 Asian children. Yeah, we get a lot of second glances.
 I love it though! Not the second glances part, but the fact that I can't classify my family as primarily one race or another. It is something that I have to keep on the forefront of my mind. We are not a Caucasian family. We are a mixed race family who come from different cultures. I don't want my kids to ever feel like I believe the culture I have been raised in is superior to the culture they were born into.  They come from traditions far older than any American traditions. While many of their traditions are centered around false gods and religion there are plenty which aren't. I hope to be able to keep part of those alive in my kids so they never forget where they came from.

In the meantime we are making traditions we can all cherish. Eating snow crab at Joe's is just one of those.
Taking lots of pictures is another.
And the eating goes on! The kids were mesmerized by the guy making saltwater taffy! That guy was a good sport. He tapped back on the glass after the kids knocked, he smiled and waved, but most importantly he motioned for them to come inside and get a free sample!
As good as it was, one little piece of taffy wasn't going to cut it as a 'desert'! On the ride back to Sunset the "Hot Donuts Now" sign had a strange magnetic pull to it. All three cars in our caravan mysteriously drifted into the Krispy Kreme donut shop! It must have been fate. A box of 12 hot donuts were waiting for the 12 of us to consume...
and consume we did!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Day 2 Going and Coming with Smiles

After the morning we had yesterday my sister recommended we get the book "The Kissing Hand".
It is about a little racoon who is scared to go to school but his Mommy gives him a kiss on his hand. She then tells him to hold onto the kiss and any time he gets lonely through the day open it up and remember Mommy is in his heart.
The evening got a little crazy last night with soccer practice and Praise team practice. So we read the book to him this morning while he was eating breakfast.
The book came complete with a sheet of stickers to remind him or Mommy's kiss.
All too soon it (way to early in the morning) it was time to head up to the top of the drive for the bus stop. Pierson sat in the front seat pretending to drive while he waited for the bus. (Yes, I was holding the keys).
There it was! Pierson jumped up barely gave me a kiss and hurried to the bus! I think he was afraid it would leave him. : )
There he was. My baby boy sitting on the bus like a big boy waving to me with a huge smile! I wasn't sure if I was thrilled that he was excited or sad that he was excited? A mom's heart has so many mixed emotions.

Maylin and I spent the day watching a little Scooby Doo and painting. Right on time we headed up the driveway to wait for the bus to bring Pierson home.

 It wasn't long before he was there smiling and running down the steps. I thought he was going to trip and tumble due to his excitement. Our conversations went something like this.

Me: "Did you use my kisses in your hand?"
Pierson: "Yep, like one hundrwed times. All over my face!"
I bet he didn't get any strange looks for that?

Me: "What did you do at school?"
Pierson; "Umm... went to the pwayground and teacher gave us ice cream!" 
Well we know what is important to him right?

Me: "Pierson do you have pretty girls in your class?"
Pierson: "SHURE I do! A loc of dem! I love dat! as he squints his eyes, raises his eyebrows and puckers his lips. "I kiss two of dem on de bus!"

Oh No! I think I am in trouble! At least he had a great day!

1st day of school 2011

Maylin didn't want to wake up this morning. I tickled and snuggled. I sang and brushed her hair with my hands. She wouldn't budge. I finally picked her up and stood her on the floor. Within an instant she was a crumpled ball on the floor

Pierson on the other hand was chipper and excited to go!
Last night he said he wanted to ride the bus all by himself. (Maylin's Kindergarten start time was later today so she had to be a car rider). I asked Pierson if he was still sure he wanted to ride the bus by himself this morning... "No, maybe I go wis you dis morning." While that made my heart a little happy to know that he still needed me, I was getting a glimpse into his insecurity; the rest of my heart broke for him.

After scurrying around eating breakfast, dressing, combing hair and getting book bags ready it was time to go. I went to find Maylin. I walked into our room where I left her last. Pierson was there but Maylin had vanished. I asked Pierson where Maylin was?  He just pointed. I walked around the bed and sure enough there she was curled up laying on the floor. I cheerfully said "come on sweet girl it is time to go!" ...She just laid there not moving, not looking at me. Immediately I asked her what was wrong... no response... I said, "Are you a little bit scared to go to school?" She slowly nodded her sweet little head without looking at me. UGHHHH!!! Rip out my heart and stomp that sucker flat!

My irrational thought process: How can I, a responsible parent, send my kids away to someone who doesn't love them and doesn't understand their history.  How can I trust someone else to teach my children and discipline them for the better part of their waking day? I am a terrible human being for doing this to them. If I loved them I would keep them here forever...  Yeah I know, a little irrational.

By the time we got in the car they were both smiling! We are GOLDEN this is going to be a good day!

Pierson walked straight into class and sat at his desk. All seemed to be going well.

(Notice the long flowing blonde hair... I think Pierson is going to be in heaven! There were a LOT of little blondes in his class! Those seem to be his pick)
While I was waiting in the hall for Adam to catch up to us (he had to park the car) another Mother came out and said "Awe, there is a little boy in there crying." She almost had tears in her eyes.
I, being the compassionate person I am, said "Oh that makes me want to cry too". (Aren't I nice for caring about other kids... ) It never even occurred to me that it could have been Pierson. Sure enough when Adam came to tell him bye he turned around with his tear stained cheeks and red eyes.

 I thought I was going to die! I wanted to take him home with me right then and never bring him back! After about 5 minutes (which seemed like hours) the librarian walked by and promised him a "grape" stamp if he would stay at school and come to the library later. That seemed to do the trick. He agreed and went back to class.

Maylin was a little nervous but smiling now. They divided the kids into four groups for the day. When they called her name she nervously rushed to the teacher while leaving her book bag behind. I called after her and showed her the bag. She pulled a "classic Maylin" she threw her head in circles, rolled her eyes and nervously laughed while shuffling her feet back to get her bag.

We got to follow her to class and watch her settle in.
 She didn't say much, but she was smiling and watching the other kids in her group intently
   We eventually left her room after some hugs and kisses. I was feeling a little better as a parent.

Of course I wasn't leaving that school without checking on Pierson one more time. We went back and peeked through the window of his class. He was sitting up straight with a smile!  RELIEF!! Now I could go semi enjoy the rest of the morning!

When I picked Maylin up she was ALL SMILES! She said, "My teacher say I had an AWESOME DAY!" I couldn't have been more proud of her. Her assessments were all great! (Thanks Elite preschool) They even commented how well she played with other children!!! (I hope I got the right report!) ; )

Pierson rode the bus home BY HIMSELF! I waited and waited. I was parked at the end of our mile long driveway at a funny angle. From where I was sitting I could see where the bus would be coming. I was ready to jump out and take a picture of him getting off the bus. Next thing I know he is opening the back door on the other side of the car!

WHAT??? The bus came from the other direction?! I totally missed him getting off the bus. :( However, he was grinning from ear to ear! He couldn't stop talking about that bus ride and how he followed directions. "I sat wiff my book bag on my legs and I look at the front!"

Talk about being a relieved Mommy! Both of my kids came home with smiles!!!

Final Report:
I asked Pierson "Did you make any friends today?
Thank you Jesus for giving my kids the peace they needed to survive their first day!
 I can rest easier tonight!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Last Day of Summer Vacation

We decided it was going to be a low key kind of day. I let the kids watch a few episodes of Scooby Doo in the morning while they ate breakfast. Then it was off for a nice walk in the woods. Pierson really wanted to take his guitar. Of course if you take your guitar you need your microphone. And what great American citizen doesn't take your flag with you.
Of course it wasn't long before he decided...
"We leab it herew and we get it on de way back."
Maylin "needed" her drawing paper, a maker and of course her purse!
It was a good thing he left the guitar behind... He would never be able to jump the grand canyon with the extra weight.
We explored the bottom meadow.
He broke "trees" and carried them around.
She drew the nature around us while sitting on my lap so the "itchies gont get me".
We climbed a tree stand. (no we are not hunters).
We picked burrs out of Chaucer's hair.
We dove,
and dove,
and flipped (well sorta).
We jumped
and swam deep.

Yep those are my kids swimming to get fish off the floor of the deep end. (9 feet)
We ate snacks.
Pouted a little bit.

Picked flowers
played with dead bugs.
and crashed hard. 
We had a wonderful afternoon. Wednesday evenings are usually our bible study night. Mom keeps the kids while we go. However since it was the first day of school we wanted to be able to tuck the kids in bed. So bible study came to us. (we have such awesomely wonderful friends)
The kids swam some more and then we headed for bed. 
Pierson went to bed THRILLED and wrestles. He was excited about riding the bus by himself (Maylin has staggered start time for kindergarten and wouldn't be riding the bus). 
Maylin snuggled with me nose to nose. As she was falling asleep I whispered, "You are going to Kindergarten tomorrow!" 
 She teared up and said in the quietest whimper, "I want you go wiff me". Pull out my heart! I can't describe how that makes this Mommy's heart break! I silently cried so as not to alarm her. This little spirit has finally learned to trust me and now when she wants/needs me the most I have to push her out the door and abandon her all over again. 
Yes I know that is a little drastic but it is how I felt. She has such a hard time trusting people and has a past which taught her to defend herself. Now she wants me to take care of her and defend her but... 
I can't. 
 Anyone interested in a Home Schooling commune? : )
Here is to hoping the next day goes a little better.