Wednesday, May 26, 2010

World Cup Send Off Game

Four years ago Rob and I took our oldest two kids, who were 8 and 9 then,
to the send off game for the World Cup.
 Last night we took all 5 of the kids with us along with 2 long time friends and another kid of a friend.
We were 10 of the 36,218 people
at the World Cup Send Off game
@ Rentschler Field in East Hartford CT.

Our seats were right on midfield in row two. It was incredible.

Rob and I were so happy that our three youngest kids were finally going to see an international soccer game.

There is just something so special about seeing the US team play.
 It was basically a try out to fill the final spots on the team to be sent to South Africa so none of the "big" names were playing.
That really didn't keep us from enjoying being there.
Final score was 4-2 with a US loss to Czech Republic.
Can't wait to see who made the final cut.

So it's now the morning after... we got home at 1 a.m. and my three youngest are recovering.
 Poor Nate was coughing yesterday and last night, so I knew he'd be home today.
Helen and Logan dragged themselves downstairs just as school would be starting.
That combined with it going to be 96 degrees
no air conditioning in the school
helped me decide to keep them home too.
They look hungover, poor things.

Tonight Justin has a special ceremony at school for the 8th grade boys.
We'll be there to celebrate with him.
Last night I kept looking over at Justin and realized that he is becoming a young man.
The next Send Off game is in 4 years and he will be 17, a senior and getting ready to go off to college.
The thought of that will make tonight's ceremony all the more a 3 tissue event.
Tomorrow is the Middle School awards ceremony.

Quite the busy week here at 5 & 2 Scotts.


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

An Update and some thoughts on parenting

Just wanted to update on how things have been going around here since I've implemented our new "Toys for Misbehavior" policy. It has been so peaceful around here. They seem to get it. I've also talked to them about how Rob and I try to do as much as we can for them. We give them most of our free time. Don't get me wrong we enjoy most of it but honestly some things slip through the cracks that I should/could be doing such as keeping up with things around the house. We don't really ask a lot of them. My main things are could you please put away your own clean clothes and throw away the garbage in your rooms. That pretty much covers it. We do expect them to help out with things such as care for the pets, taking out the garbage, getting the table ready for dinner etc.

They understand that we are not going to raise "brats". We see too many parents that don't want their kids mad at them or the kids seem to run the house. We won't have it. Kids who don't have responsibilites or are mouthy to their parents are not respectful to each other nor to other adults in their lives. Kids need to be taught to think about other people in their lives and not just expect things. I recently explained to Megan about the time it takes to make sure her uniform are clean, schedule our lives around their games and practices and take OUR free time to bring them. She listened carefully and then I asked her what she was thinking. She told me how much she appreciated our time. I don't think she had ever thought that maybe there were other things in life that I'd like to spend my time doing but that I CHOOSE to dedicate my time to my children.

That's what my idea of being a mom is about. People talk about choice... Choose Life, Pro Choice... but having a child is so much more than that. Choosing to be a mother is an everyday choice. Every decision I make is based out of that central part of my life. I know that there are parents that seem to make choices based on what's best for THEM. Some parents seem so disconnected from their role of parent. That somehow parenthood is some part time thing to them. They leave parenting to others who have to pick up the pieces of the childhoods they've shattered. Some don't seem to let parenthood effect them at all. They have left their children to their own devices to raise themselves. Some parents seem to be living their childhoods through their children. Maybe they didn't have a great childhood and are trying to make sure their kids get everything they thought they should have had. That can go too far though when kids become in charge. It's not healthy for kids to think they can push their parents around... or whine enough, pout enough or manipulate enough to get their own way. What a big disappointment adulthood will be when all these kids grow up and ALL think they can get their OWN way... that's not how the real world works. People need to think about how their actions effect others... how to put their own needs aside and put someone else first. Children are supposed to observe this in their parents. Selfish, selfcentered parents raise selfish, self centered children. The exception is if another adult comes into the child's life and models for  the child respect, honor and trustworthiness.  I want to be that person in my children's lives. I want them to be able to look to Rob and I as the example of someone they can trust and look up to not someone they are always trying to get their own way with. I tell my children that God has given them to me for this time to teach them. There will come a time in their life when they will not be under my rules and they will be making choices on their own. As children and as they grow into young adults it is my job to lead them and their job to follow me. As adults, my hope is for them to follow God's will for them. I think they know how very much we love them and want them to be honorable and true to the best parts of themselves. This parenting thing is not easy. Time seems to go by WAY to FAST. It is so precious to have these children to raise up. I am starting to catch a glimpse of life as they all move on with their lives. This is THEIR childhood. A time of sweet memories and hopefully a strong foundation for them to build upon as they go on into adulthood.

Our precious family.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day!
I am still enjoying the quiet end to a lovely Mother's Day.
My morning started with some of these delivered to me in bed.

I then opened the homemade gifts from my children which always fill my heart with love. The thought of them taking the time to make these special treasures... trying their very best, using their neatest handwriting, even keeping live flowers in their bathroom and watering them all by themselves is just so precious to me.
(I had to use a paper towel to absorb some of the water out of the pot...
the poor things were VERY WELL watered.)

Then they gave me the gifts they bought for me with Rob last night. Rob had told me that "they like to shop."
My goodness he wasn't kidding.

First came this.

Then this... which I didn't know what it was for...
but I was delighted it was a "Kate Spade".

The kids thought I'd like it because I am working at a library again.

Finally I opened this....

and I cried.

My poor kids didn't know what was going on.
I had my face in my hands crying.
They were asking if I was okay and amongst themselves trying to decide
if they were happy or sad tears.
I told them that it was too much.
I truly never expected so much from them.
It was like Christmas,
my birthday
Mother's Day
all in one.
Then I joked about deserving it and they all breathed a sigh of relief and started laughing. THAT was the mom they know and love.

Happy Mother's Day!

Secrets Revealed and Possible Giveaways

As I mentioned last time, I have something special to share with you today.

I will share my great parenting secret that I have discovered with my few fortunate followers and readers. I just made this amazing discovery yesterday so there may be a few tweaks that need to be made but here it goes.

I need you to know that I have witnesses that this truly works. At my daughter's softball game I reveled my secret discovery to each of my children. As I noted misbehavior I called them over to the "blue tables" under a pavillion and quietly told them what new and exciting changes were about to happen in their lives. I was no longer going to be angry with them when they made choices that were not in line with what I wanted them to do or had out right told them NOT to do. No from now on in my mind I would be hearing a little "chu-ching" instead. Each child looked very solemnly at me and quietly, with deep reverence for their wise mother, walked back over to the bleachers to watch the softball game. All the parents there were in awe of the great powers of a trip to the "blue tables". I told them that they were all my witnesses of this great and amazing thing I was now able to do. I told them that I was going to sell this amazing discovery of how to get my children to behave on facebook. (I was kidding... sort of... I have actually decided to share it with the few and the loyal readers of my blog for free but by all means if this secret changes your lives and that of your family for the better please feel free to spread the word and send a "free will donation" of whatever amount you feel it is worth.)

First I want to explain the inspiration behind this great discovery.

I was inspired by my one child who seems to constantly do what she WANTS to do... she will even tell me what I am asking her to do and then tell me that she is going to or has done what she WANTS to do anyways. It is so blatantly disrespectful I can't begin to tell you how many ways I have tried to show/convince/bribe/etc her that doing things mommy and daddy's way is best for her but to NO avail. She is quite the challenge. Well yesterday offered yet another example of her telling me that she did understand what I wanted her to do and then she went right ahead and did what SHE wanted to do. I explained that her choice would have consequences. That did not seem to effect her choice in the least.

So at home I started packing for Saturday's Indoor Yard Sale at our oldest two children's school. I decided to start in HER room and made sure she saw me put some of her favorites into the back of my truck. I then explained to her that although I could not MAKE her choose to follow me and do what I wanted her to do there will now be more serious consequences to these choices. In the past I used to bag up toys and drag them up to our attic with the condition that improved behavior would lead to the ability to earn the toys back.

It appears that our children have SO MANY TOYS that this did not seem to effect them in the way I had hoped

and one child innocently told me that it was

kind of a relief to have a clean room without the toys.


So now whenever they purposefully and blatantly disobey me or Rob I will take an item in payment. I will no longer be taking things up to the attic to clutter my home... no it will be priced and put in the yard sale pile for the next yard sale. There are two more planned already... our street is having a multifamily yardsale on May 22nd and our town has a community yardsale in July. So from now on their disrespectful behavior will mean money in my pocket.

Can you hear the "chu-ching"?

Now if there is no yardsale scheduled, I will either put it in the donation box or put a FREE sign on it at the end of our driveway.

Do you see what a benefit this has turned out

for you my dear readers?

I will be posting these FREE items as they come up and you will be able to come by and get them.

It is my own special twist on the blog giveaways so many are doing.

Chu-chinging and hopefully encouraging obedient little children,

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Great weather for Ducks and Indoor Yard Sales

Today was a rainy day here in upstate NY. It was also the first (hopefully) annual Indoor Yard Sale/ PTFfundraiser at my kids school. They couldn't have ordered up better weather for the day. (It IS a Christian school so maybe the good Lord had something to do with it.) My sister in law and I had adjoining spots so we could spend the day visiting.... a huge bonus was having a conversation with NONE of our combined 7 kids interrupting. Not only that but we made money at the same time. I sold so much of my stuff I had 3 empty bins to carry back to my truck after all was said and done. I wish I had brought more. The great part was that I priced everything to sell. 90% of my prices were .25 or .50 so it's not that I made a bunch of money but THE STUFF DIDN'T COME HOME WITH ME. I can't have anxiety over what to do with stuff that is no longer here. It was such a fabulous afternoon visiting with my sister in law, getting to know some of the parents at the school better, (seeing that THEY have STUFF too) and meeting some really neat people.

My next post will be a special treat. Not only will I reveal my great parenting secret to getting my kids to behave but if it doesn't work YOU my fabulous (albeit few) readers will be told about my new giveaway(s).

Life IS Good,

Read more:

Friday, May 7, 2010

Sharing Her Better Sides

I don't know about you, but I love visiting a new home for the first time. The words, "Would you like a tour?" make me giddy. I love how everyone's home is so personal and can either reflect their personality or cause you to get to know a whole new side of them. Sometimes they just haven't had the time or resources to make the changes that they really want to or it may have reflected them 10 years ago but now they are looking for something fresh.

I have a confession to make, I am a sentimental fool. I save the most silly of things. It is so hard for me to let go that it gets to the point that I am overwhelmed bordering on anxiety. So the photos I'm about to post are a lie. They are misleading. They are carefully planned to show my home's best side. You see it's not her fault that I have this problem and she really doesn't deserve the treatment I've given her. She deserves more. So rather than show her as she really is... I will be showing off her best assets.

Here is the balcony over our family room.
I love having a two story family room.
I love these two guys too.

We decided to go with a half wall rather than spindles
because we thought that would discourage toys
from being thrown down on us.
This was not foolproof especially with the
GI Joe guys and their parachutes.

Above our kitchen cabinets are some of my favorites.
an old fan
a weathervane from Maine
a birdcage
I also have a collection of old tins.

And here is our family tree wall.

The picture makes me think I need to
add some more photos to this wall.
This always makes me happy.

What EVERY librarian needs.
I simply ADORE this card catalog.
The only problem, if you can call it that,
is WHAT to store in the drawers.
It is in our entryway/foyer.
I read somewhere that your foyer is the first impression people make of your home. It should reflect the family. Well our foyer has the family tree wall of photos and this card catalog. I think that is a fairly good representation of us.
The funny thing is we RARELY use the front door.
If you look to the room on your right
 you'll see an air hockey table in our "formal" living room.

Every formal living room should have one don't you think.
We are not exactly a formal living room family.

Here she is under a blanket of snow.
See, she's really quite beautiful
deserves more from me.

Always trying to get it better,