Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's Not Fair!

For everyone who got the condensed version of events on FaceBook, here is the whole story of last night....

So at shower/bedtime my kids decided to make a deal with each other. Greyson (age 8) will get in the shower while Grant (age 5) watches tv, and then they will switch.
All was going according to plan until a naked Grant runs out of the bathroom "I can't get in the shower there is something in there!" Turns out is was wet paper starting to disintegrate, which I clean out and tell him to get his naked butt off my furniture and get himself into the shower. Nothing. I end up repeating myself two more times and then tell Greyson the tv has to go off since Grant can't concentrate on getting in the shower. "Grant, you're a f---ing idiot." O-kay.
"Greyson, you are now in trouble for not only not turning off the tv, but using words that aren't very nice."
"I'm leaving, I can't live here any more with a brother that makes life harder for me."
"You might want to put on your shoes, because it's kinda cold out there."
Shoes go on. "Now I'm leaving this place."
"You might also want to wear your coat, it is cold out."
"No, I'm just leaving."
Exactly 2 minutes later he is back inside. Ranting again, "My life is hard enough without my brother messing things up for me. I've had a hard day. And Dad doesn't live with us!" Really, pulling the dad card after 2 1/2 years?
Then he decides he starving and he is going to finish his rice from dinner so he can have dessert. He tells me he is finished and is ready for a cookie.
"Really Greyson? I'm not going to find your rice in the garbage?"
"No, I ate it." But it is in the garbage.
"This is not fair! I am starving and I didn't like the rice and now you're not letting me eat anything else! It's not fair!"
He continues on the same vein until finally I get fed up as he is still ranting while trying to brush his teeth.
"That's right, life is NOT fair OR equal. You know what? It's not fair that you are going to sleep in a warm bed tonight. There are people who are sleeping outside tonight. You saw them on the sidewalk in Chicago in their sleeping bags."
At this point my 5 year old starts to laugh because it is funny to 5 year olds that there are people sleeping on sidewalks.
Greyson says,"It's not funny Grant, imagine sleeping outside - it's really cold out there!" And yes you know from your 2 minutes of running away tonight with no coat on!
But, I can't leave it at that, "And it's not fair that you are starving after eating 3 meals today and KNOWING that you are getting 3 meals tomorrow when there are people out there that don't know when they will eat next. And it's not fair that you are wearing your clean pajamas that your MOM washed for you. And it's not fair that you are brushing your teeth because you know you get to go to the dentist to take care of your teeth so they don't hurt because your MOM goes to work to have dental insurance." At this point I stop because I'm pretty sure I've taken it too far - but it WORKED not another "unfair" complaint last night!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

30 Days of Thankfulness

1. I am thankful for laughter. I love how you can have the worst day, but a good laugh can turn that right around.

2. I'm thankful for Alex Jimenez who has been my best friend for 18 years.

3. I am so thankful for my oldest son Greyson who is often responsible beyond his 8 years.

4. I am thankful for my youngest son Grant who is just as quick with a hilarious one-liner as he is to give hugs.

5. I am thankful for ALL of my jobs: Parent, wife, GrowthWorks, Red Cross.

6. I am thankful for my family. For my parents, Stanley & Janet Laskos who have helped me out so much with the kids since Alex has been gone and who helped provide me with an education so that I didn't start my adult life off in debt. For my sister Marie who is a great Aunt and who has even gone as far as to have others check up on me when she knows I'm having a hard day. For Stanley Laskos & Alison Laskos who have each watched my crazy kids. And for Shelly & Jeff Seymour who buy my kids great Christmas presents.

7. I am thankful that I have mostly "wants" in my life and very few "needs."

8. I am thankful that I went to Camp Kinawind in 1993. That experience has been the catalyst for so many other experiences in my life that have affected me spiritually, socially and professionally.

9. Thankful that I live in a place with all 4 seasons. I love the smells of each season. The leaves in the fall, with a turkey baking at Thanksgiving. The fresh smell of snow, and pine trees at Christmas, cookies baking on a snow day. The earthy smell of spring promising growth, and the smell of flowers at Easter services. The smell of baked sand and the slightly fishy waters of the Great Lakes.

10. I'm thankful I got a good report from Greyson's teacher. She said multiple times how intelligent and enjoyable he is.
Grant only needs to be taught things once, but like most kindergarteners, needs to work on his social skills!

11.I'm thankful for all the Veterans in my family. My Grandpa Laskos, my dad Stanley J Laskos Jr, and my brother Stanley Michael Laskos. And the MANY cousins on both sides of my family. Thanks!

12. & 13. Thankful that my sister always arranges mini-vacations for us! And thankful to be headed to Chicago this time :)

14. I'm thankful I've had so many opportunities to travel and thankful also that my children are receiving that opportunity too.

15. I'm thankful for resilience. Over the last three years I feel like life has left me beaten down and broken, but somehow I am still whole.

16. I am thankful for my huge extended family. At last count (my wedding) I had 70 aunts, uncles, and first cousins (this does not count my cousin's kids!). I can truly say they are my friends too :)

17. I'm thankful that my kids have a sense of humor and are resilient too.

18. I am thankful for every night my kids go to bed on time and sleep through the night!

19. I'm thankful for good friends and for good food, especially when combined together!

20. I am thankful for sincerity. It always means so much when someone sincerely says thank you, or really wants to know how you are doing and it's so much better than someone just going through the motions.

21. I'm thankful for tomorrows.

22. I'm thankful my house is a home.

23.I'm thankful for modern transportation that allows our loved ones to travel huge distances in relatively short amounts of time.
Worst. Airport. Traffic. EVER. Thankful that this is my *problem*

24. I am thankful for Sarah Hale who worked for 38 years to make Thanksgiving a national holiday. I'm thankful for all the heroes who use the superpower of persistence.

25. Thankful for a night out with my husband last night AND that he was/is home for the holiday AND thanks to FB "ran" into some friends :)

26. I'm thankful for movies that are just as entertaining for the parents as they are for the kids.

27. I'm thankful that I get to read to my kids every night.

28. I'm thankful that rain is not forever....even if it may seem like it!

29. I'm thankful to God, from whom all blessings flow.

30. I am so very thankful that my two bestest friends were born today! Happy Birthday Alex Jimenez and Marie Laskos!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Confession: Last Sunday was a delight!

In a previous blog post I complained that Sundays and grocery shopping were rough....but I have a confession, last Sunday's trip to the grocery store was actually fun.

First my kids found what we call a "sitting cart." It's a cart that has a seat attached for younger children who are too big for the seat on the front of the cart. So I was pushing 65 pounds of 8 year old and 45 pounds of 5 year old in addition to the cart and groceries - but they were well behaved!

As we ended the trip and were walking past the Halloween items Greyson said, "Mom, we got to think about Christmas!" Christmas? Where was this going? "What about Christmas?" "You know, what kind of tree we're going to get....like a white pine? Because you know the white pine is the state tree of Michigan!" Oh yeah, my lessons on Michigan pride are kicking in!

I think the highlight of the trip for them was picking up the discarded lottery cards by the lottery machine, to which they proceed to scratch off all left over spots. Greyson exclaimed, "I won $250,000!" Grant said, "No YOU did not win $250,000 - you have to share it with the fam-a-ly." Love these kids!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

My kids love wineries

Yes, you read correctly. My kids do love wineries. When I first realized this, I was a little embarrassed. But then I realized that I spent a little time in bars when I was younger...and I think I turned out alright! Also, what do they think wineries are but a place to drink grape juice, eat good food, and run around outside.

Although we live in Michigan and I try to be a supporter of the state wine industry, my kids have only been to Ohio wineries. Did you know that in the late 1800's Ohio was the largest wine producer in the US and is now 8th in wine production. (Michigan has the 4th largest grape crop in the US).

One of the wineries we went to twice this summer was Barrel Run Crossing in Rootstown, Ohio.
Here they are having the most fun ever...climbing on the propane tank. But the adults also had a great time with the wines, ciders and local foods. Look at this yummy stuffed squash my husband ordered.

They also love the wineries in Put-In-Bay. They had grape juice at the Put-In-Bay Winery.

But the place they were really dying to go was Heineman's Winery. They claim Heineman's makes the best grape juice! This is also the first winery they had ever been to, and as of now, the most recent they've been to. Besides offering a winery tour that including lots of information on how they make their wine you can tour the Crystal Cave which is the world's largest geode!

Well, I guess you can think I'm a bad mom if you want, but my kids still love wineries!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Sundays are LoooooooooooooNG

Yesterday was the stuff blogs are made of.

Sundays tend to be "long" days because they are unstructured. Yesterday I thought we were doing good, we got through the morning with no yelling....until I tried to walk out the door. Then Grant is yelling because he wants Greyson's DS since Grant's DS is "dead." And I'm yelling because no one knows where a charger is. And then we're in the car and I'm swearing at my kids on the way to church.

After lunch we went through toys. My kids have decided to have a yard sale to sell their old toys so they can get something big, like a Wii. This is their idea, and yet I'm the one who ends up doing all the work. As we are going through the toys, for 75% of them Greyson is saying "sell" and Grant turns around and says "keep." In the middle of all this chaos, Greyson picks up a nerf gun (and those who know me, know I loath nerf guns) and proceeds to shoot my head point blank. Yes, I experienced regressive pull and the next words that came out of my mouth were, "I hate you." Greyson smiles and says, "You told me you loved me this morning!" My 8 year old suffered no self-esteem damage on that one!

Sundays also tend to be grocery shopping days. For those who say, "I never go grocery shopping with my kids," you can stuff it! My husband works 800 miles away, I have no family nearby, and I have already paid more for child care this summer than my mortgage. (I am not exaggerating either). So my only option, as I see it, is to take the kids. This particular shopping trip ended with Grant sprinting across the produce section with Greyson hot on his heels until Grant was tackled and Greyson sat on him until I made it over to them. All because Grant "stole" A m&m from the bulk bin.

And it continues....we next pick up this saga in the shower where I hear, "Grant you know mom is gonna yell if you spray water on the ceiling." Sure enough, I walk in to see water dripping from the ceiling.....

I decide for story time it's MY pick and I pick MY favorite book Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel. Afterward I told my bunk bed kids that they cannot sleep in the same bed because of their behavior today. To which Greyson says, "Let's give mom the finger." Both kids stuck out their pointer fingers and shook them at me.

After they were snug in bed, I cut myself a slice of birthday cake and poured a non-kid appropriate drink!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Wedding Fun

So I think I promised you some funny stories....
Yesterday we went to a wedding. On the way we picked up Megann and Lindsay and we decided to stop at Bronner's Christmas Store in Frankenmouth. I have to admit that we were running later than I originally planned (and yes, it was me being late) so we only had 20 minutes to get in and out of the store. If you've been there before you know it's HUGE. The idea was that we were each going to pick out an ornament for the newlyweds tree for Christmas. I picked out an ornament with 2 hearts that said something like "Happily Ever After." Megann picked out a camping ornament since the bride and groom like to hike and camp. My kids.....picked out wine bottle ornaments. Yep, my underage-ers thought these were great. Lindsay picked out a cheesecake ornament, which of course goes well with wine bottles!
The wedding was held at Dow Gardens and afterwards Greyson was precariously checking out a pond next to the ceremony site. Megann asked me about it and I said I brought extra clothes. "For Greyson?" (He's 8) "Oh, I brought them for the whole family."
At the reception I found out I have a very talented 5 year old. There are witness accounts of him break dancing to the country favorite Cotton Eyed Joe. I did capture the following video of his dancing abilities with the song Raise Your Glass.
On the way to and from the wedding Greyson kept us amused by playing the Truth or Dare game on his Ipod. Lindsay started out the hilarity by answering the question: Could you be a vegetarian? Why or why not? with "No, because I love bacon." My kids think "bacon" is hilarious. So when there were "pick your own dare" for another person the dare was always to roll down your window and yell "BACON" as loud as you can. Yep, the same kids who are fascinated with wine bottles are fascinated with the word bacon.
The last truth question that Grant had was "What seat would you choose on a bus?" He answered, "The clean one." And I think because we were laughing so hard he added, "with footrests."

Friday, August 26, 2011

A job well done

No man is an island, and neither is any mom either.
This summer our family was treated to having Amelia babysit 3 days a week for us. She took the kids to the splash park, supervised "homework," made sure chores got done, made double decker quesadillas and BOXES of mac & cheese. The bonus for me was I didn't need to get the kids dressed and out the door 3 days a week!
Today is Amelia's last day before she migrates back to college for the fall semester. As I reflect back on the summer I am truly grateful to all the effort she put into her summer job, aka helping me raise my kids!
What they say is true: you will never know how much this means until you go through it too. I am thankful for everyone who has helped me out in this all-consuming profession of being a parent.
And Amelia, thanks for a job well done!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Honesty is Funny

So, I have been told that I tell funny stories about my kids and I thought this blog would be a way to share more of them. We have a phrase at our house, "honesty is funny" and really, that's all I am - honest. These are things that really happen to me, as a mom. But more than making people laugh, I want other moms to know that you are all NORMAL. These things happen to ALL moms and you are not alone!