Tag Archives: parenting

Passed with flying chocolate icing

He passed. Fynn passed his food challenge. Fynn can now eat peanut butter. I can stop scanning labels for traces of, and might contain… I’m still in a state of disbelief and shock.

We celebrated with a trip to Starbucks, where I said he could pick whatever treat he wanted from the dessert case. Eyes wide open, I picked him up for a better view. His arm outstretched, finger pointing. I knew exactly where it was going. The chocolate cupcake, with icing a mile high. Two please!

My drink order came up, then we took our plate of cupcakes to a corner table. We sat, me and my little guy, by ourselves. Baby sister at home with the grandparents, Daddy at work, it was just me and him. Fynn didn’t inherit just my blue eyes, he’s got a love of cupcakes and icing that tops mine. Chocolate is his happy food, and he’ll do the cutest dance to prove it. Since he was born I had my heart set on dates like this: hot latte for me, milk for him, cupcakes for both. Me and him. Him and me. Just us.

We sat there this afternoon, with the mid afternoon sun pouring in, our eyes squinting from the sun and from laughter. Giggles over icing covered noses and the crumbs that surrounded us. Giving each other bites of our cupcakes. I watched him licking the frosting and smiling from ear to ear as chocolate covered his face. Then they pricked. It took all that I had not to let the tears fall. So I smiled, closed my eyes and threw my head back, smiling a secret thankful smile. The worry was gone. I was not concerned with what was in the cupcake, what could be in it, or what could have been on the machinery. Gone. The years ahead of us hold many worries and concerns, but not that of a peanut allergy and epi pens and anaphylactic shock.

As I write this I’m still overwhelmed with emotions. I’m so thankful that God met us halfway. Had we not been so vigilant the past two years, Fynn might not have passed his peanut challenge. Even when people do as we did, it doesn’t always turn out this way. Fynn’s the exception to the rule {and you could tell by the emotionless allergist’s face, his smile said a thousand words} We did our part, and He saw, heard our prayers,  recognized, and helped the rest of the way. I’m not going  question, or ask why us and not other deserving families. Right now I can only focus on being thankful.

Fynn and I stayed at the coffee shop just long enough to finish our cupcakes and clean up hundreds of crumbs. We walked hand in hand through the doors into the fresh air. My step a little lighter, eyes a little watery. As we headed home he told me over and over how he got to try peanut butter, how he passed his test, how he loved his cupcake. My cheeks hurt from smiling, my belly filled with chocolaty goodness, my legs ached to jump for joy.


I feel the need to add that this post is not intended to gloat about Fynn outgrowing his allergy. We are grateful, but know that not everyone’s situations turn out like ours has. I know there are many families who read this who are coping with food allergies. There is hope for outgrowing them, but if not, hopefully those around us {you} will understand the severity of food allergies and will have compassion and honesty in their hearts. My thoughts are with you, and I’m oddly thankful for the opportunity to have learned about living with food allergies.


Filed under Uncategorized

Small, yet heartfelt, acknowledgements

Months ago Lucas and I spent a Saturday or Sunday running around with the kids. Normally we limit our ins and outs because our kids {like everyone else’s} are not a fan of multiple stops when it comes to errands. We had stopped no less than four times, and were headed to our last stop, when from the backseat we heard that a truck had been broken, and couldn’t Daddy fix it? Daddy, on his last string of patience, told him something along the lines that he broke it, so it wouldn’t be getting fixed.

{not a normal thing this Daddy says…. this man totes around the patience of a saint most days, and can fix almost anything that has a wheel popped off, or a bed unattached}

I caught myself reaching to the back, grabbing the truck, and attached the broken piece. We caught each others eyes and snickered, so worn out from buckling and unbuckling, lifting, rushing, keeping hands off of shelves… and he said the magic words to me.

Thank goodness you’re the stay at home parent.

Dec 28, 2009 086

A small, yet heartfelt, acknowledgement.

I take them when I get them. Just as he takes every Thank goodness you have a job that you enjoy, and you’re such a wonderful provider that comes out of my mouth on too few occasion.

Not every woman is cut out to be a career woman. Not every woman is cut out to stay at home with the kids. Not every man has the drive to bring home the bacon, and occasionally, when asked to, fry it up as well. Thankfully, we are cut out for the tasks at hand.

Dec 28, 2009 020

Last night the kids slept poorly, and then woke up too early this morning. With that in mind I canceled a playdate, and had a few small errands in my head that we could do before an early naptime. As we readied ourselves for the day, we talked about what was on our agenda. My agenda. Fynn was not please. So we threw caution to the wind, and flew by the seat of our snowpants. The morning was spent on a muddy yet frozen playground, with snow boots and mittens and hats. We went with the flow. Not all mothers could do that.

This evening, after a Monday that left me with smiles instead of a headache, Fynn came up to me and put my face in his hands. Looked at me and said with a smile You’re a good mommy.

A small, yet heartfelt, acknowledgement. I’ll take it.

Dec 28, 2009 080


Filed under Uncategorized

Constant motion

The thing about life with toddlers is that there’s never a still moment

unless someone is asleep

a dull moment does not exist

Dec 26, 2009 019

They are constantly in motion

Jumping, running, colliding

motion is the definition of children

Dec 26, 2009 022

and if you stop

if you think you need to catch your breath

all that’s left will be the ghost of a monkey jumping on the bed

Dec 26, 2009 023

Motion is the definition of parenting

it’s not a choice once those babes are born

you keep jumping, running, colliding

and we embrace it…


Filed under Uncategorized

Friday night

This is what our Friday night look like

two glasses of red, chips straight out of the bag {they taste better that way…}, salsa and a paused movie because the baby woke up

and the movie {Be Kind Rewind, for those wondering} has been paused about a dozen times for the same reason

but these are our nights

we steal moments while we can

sipping red and eating a bit of fire

rejoicing in the quiet moments while they last

they are few and far between

so we enjoy them as they come

sitting next to each other finding ourselves laughing at the same moments

reconnecting for seconds at a time

it’s love

and it’s parenthood

while they’re young we take our moments as they are given

our uninterrupted ones will come later

and while we look forward to them and all their glory

right now we wouldn’t change a thing


Filed under Uncategorized

The walk

We’ve held her for hours

walking her to sleep

curled up in our arms

drifting off into dreams

As her body becomes heavy with slumber

we walk

as her eyelids drop slightly

we walk

We walk to the point where the weight of her small seemingly light body

makes our arms feel as if they could fall off

and at that very moment

she drifts off completely

somehow knowing her parents are at the brink

With warm hearts and heavy arms

we place her ever so gently into her bed

she rolls over, sighs, and snuggles into her blankets

for hardly long enough

The walk begins again

but this time

she’s fuzzy

she smells like baby

and sleep

~ the walk doesn’t seem so tumultuous ~

She’s soft

her skin radiant

and her hair glowing like a halo

~ it might be heavenly ~

Every inch of her is warm

fingertips to toes

and her cheeks feel like velvet

The walk becomes

part of the scenic route of parenting


(Paige at just two weeks old… at the very beginning of our journey with our now 14 month old)


Filed under Uncategorized

Softness around the edges

This guy sometimes has it rough sometimes

Sept 4, 2009 025

It’s got to be tough being two, almost three.

Up against a cute little sister who is all smiles and snuggles most of the time.

It’s not that he’s not cuddly, it’s that there are so many two’isms that take place on a daily basis.

It makes it hard.

For everyone.

But he does have soft moments.

He’s known to come out of nowhere with “snuggle mommy please!”

We’re a snuggle on demand kind of a place around here.

That’s what keeps us going through the two’isms.


Filed under Uncategorized

Parenting with less no’s… possible?

For one whole day, I’d like to try to not say the word “NO”.

With two kids, I don’t know if it’s possible. I try so hard, on a daily – hourly – minute by minute basis to come up with positive alternatives to saying the N word. I’m running out of things to say.

But I don’t like to say the N word. Really. It just comes out. It comes out mostly when I’m tired, or frustrated, or are too shocked or angry to say something else (like if a certain two year old tries to jump from the couch to the dining room table…).

It’s not that I don’t want the kids to know what No means. Far from that. I think we overuse it, and it’s meaning gets lost, and it’s just another word. It doesn’t mean anything – doesn’t mean business.

I’m a big believer in positive discipline. Turning things around to not criticise as much as to reinforce positive behavior and encouragement. You’ll often hear me say “you can put the milk on the counter” instead of “NO! Don’t put the milk on the floor!” or “you can play nicely with your sister” instead of “stop being a butthead to antagonizing your sister” It’s tricky. It takes thought, and sometimes, I don’t have a thought to spare.

Parenting takes so much work. We’re molding minds, shaping human beings, helping them to figure out the world around them. It’s overwhelming and scary. And sometimes, it’s rewarding. But others, other times it just takes so much work. My brain gets so bogged down with different ways to handle situations. I think about parenting my kids all. the. time. I think about it too much – but I can’t help it. Most of the time I go with my gut, but sometimes my guts have shit for brains… (if you can tell me what movie that came from I’ll give you a big pat on the back 🙂 It’s one of my favorites…) I’m punchy tonight, but really – most of the time my gut is right, but I can’t help but question it. These are little people we’re dealing with – and I’d hate to screw them up.

Positive parenting is tough – especially when I’m not sure that I’m always a positive person. Trying is the best we can do, I just hope it’s always enough.


Filed under Uncategorized

Lessons from long ago

It came out of nowhere today. One minute I was making eggplant parmesan (a successful attempt to redeem myself from yesterdays dinner disaster…) and the next I was yelling. It was just all too much. My hands were covered in eggs and breadcrumbs, I had two cookie sheets worth of eggplant ready to put in the oven, but not enough room to move.

One child was in the fridge begging, no, screaming at me to get him popsicles and ice cream. The other was trying to get into the cabinet that I was in front of so she could empty endless plastic containers onto the kitchen floor.

And then I was five. And seven. And ten. And fifteen. And twenty. At the time, I never understood why my mom got so aggravated when we were in the kitchen as she was getting dinner ready. When we were trying to do our own thing, or get her to do something for us…

But now I know. You get stretched so very thin, and it happens so quickly.

So I yelled… to get out of  my kitchen “OR SO HELP ME GOD!!”

Not that I really know what I would have done if I hadn’t been helped…

But I still yelled. And Fynn ran, and Paige just looked at me like I had five heads. Paige actually yelled back at me. That was pleasantly unexpected!

It happens. And I honestly will not beat myself up about it. Within five minutes Fynn came back and nicely asked for some milk, and he gave me a kiss and hug. It was over.

That’s another thing I never really got when I was little. My mom would get aggravated, but it never lasted long. She’d get mad, then she was done. We always kissed and hugged, then moved on. She never held a grudge (not that I’m aware of anyway). I’m not still mad at Fynn for screaming for popsicles and ice cream. He’s two. He’s my son. I’m not still mad at Paige for trying to empty out an entire cabinet right at my feet. She’s one. She’s my daughter. They’re kids. They’re my kids.

The lessons my mother inadvertantly taught me are numerous. Memories have a funny way of coming back to you right when you need them the most. Today, I could have sworn somewhere in my voice was my mother… if I hadn’t known she was in Florida I would have thought she was standing behind me this afternoon, patting me on the back.


Filed under Uncategorized


Paige adores her big brother. Most days, Fynn tolerates his little sister. She follows him around, babbling, trying to get his attention. Trying to do everything that Fynn does.

We hear a lot of No Paige and please get Paige and noooooo!!! We’re working with Fynn to give him other outlets to help with his frustration other than pushing his sister down… but it takes time, and it’s tough for a two year old.

There are moments though when it all clicks, and we know giving him a sibling was not the worst idea in the world. This evening was one of them. My heart melted when I heard Mommy I play soccer with Paige, and then it gushed all over the floor when he later said to Paige Here you go Paige, your turn.

I think it’s quite possible that at some point in this whole parenting thing, we did something right.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Channeling Mrs. Parker

Mrs. Parker, for those of you who don’t remember, is the mother of Ralphie in the classic film A Christmas Story.

My favorite scene in the entire movie is when Mrs. Parker is trying to get her youngest son, Randy, to eat a hum drum dinner of mashed potatoes and meatloaf. He’s playing with his food, the father is threatening Randy that if he won’t eat his dinner his loving father will stick a fork in him somewhere….

Then Mrs. Parker does the unthinkable. She gets her picky eater to gobble up his dinner. How does she do it? By asking him how the piggies eat. Randy then picks up his plate, and pretends he’s a piggy and is eating from a trough – no utensils necessary. It’s hilarious, because we’ve all known picky eaters, there’s always one in every family. And we know the roll of the father rolling his eyes at the mother’s antics, but everyone eats their dinner and goes off to bed full and happy.

Tonight, I was Mrs. Parker. My husband played the eye rolling role of Old Man Parker, and Fynn – my beloved two and a half year old – was Randy.

We sat at the dinner table, all finished eating, except Fynn. We were about to give up. Then I asked him if he could take big dinosaur bites of his sandwich (which sometimes works… not always, as that game is getting old). To my surprise, he looked at me, and said “Choo choo bites!!” So I asked him if he could take a big bite like Thomas the Train.

He did 🙂

Then I asked if he could take a big bite like Mavis (another train on the show, for those of you who aren’t avid Thomas and Friends watchers!). He did! Then Percy… then James… we went through literally the entire cast. He kept eating! We even got him to take three bites one time by saying that Gordon was a big train and needs lots of food.

We were the Parker’s tonight. From Lucas rolling his eyes, to me leaning over the table with my napkin in hand under my chin coaxing Fynn to take his choo choo bites. But it worked. And tonight, everyone is going to bed with full bellies and big smiles. Ironically, our lamp broke this evning… and I have Christmas music stuck in my head!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized