mother

Crying Over a Cup of Tea

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Every year on the Friday before Mother’s Day, my children’s preschool has a beautiful Mother’s Day  Tea and musical program.  I have been attending the tea for more than 5 years and I have grown to dread it!

Its adorable to see a two-year old sing “You Are My Sunshine” dressed up like a sun complete with yellow tutu and sunglass hair bow.  All of the children are totally cute with their clumsy little hand gestures and of course there’s always the unpredictability of young children going off script that keeps you on the edge of your seat.

But I always end up crying.  I don’t mean, I get a little teary-eyed.  I mean I cry until my nose is red and my face is swollen.

This has happened for the last three years.

For me, the adorable and sweet music that brings happy tears combined with the sadness that the tea party was something I used to attend with my mom is an emotional cocktail that I can’t completely handle.  My mind starts skipping through my memories of my mom directing children’s choirs and even preparing me for my first stage solo as a five-year old, and the emotion pushes me over every time.

This past year I was really concentrating on enjoying my tea, snapping a few pictures, and recording a couple of videos without all the tears.  (That’s usually how I handle difficult situations.  Mother’s Day, Christmas, mom’s birthday…I prepare myself in advance for the possibility of sadness and generally cruise through knowing she would want me to enjoy my life with my own kids.)

This year was supposed to be different, I was going to have a peaceful time.  But no!  I made a fatal error, I misread the invitation start time and instead of showing up at what I thought was twenty minutes early to get myself calm and ready, I showed up as my daughters class was walking on stage.  She got there just in time to go on without her pretty little costume.  I felt awful; guilty and embarrassed for messing up on the time and sad and emotional from all the sappy Mother’s Day songs.  I was such a mess I ran out crying leaving my purse behind.

I recovered by Mother’s Day, but after three painful years I have some great pictures and videos but I can honestly say, I have a love-hate relationship with that tea party!

 

Inspire Your Kids to Be Readers

One of the most surprising parts of starting this blog has been the interest that my own children have in reading my writing.  All of them ask me daily if I have written another post.  They laugh and relish figuring out which kid I am writing about.

In particular my son (8 years old) will read my posts, give me feedback, and offer suggestions.  One post is never enough, he is always begging me to post something else.  So in his honor, this is a post about some of the things we have done that I think have helped inspire our kids to become readers.

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1-We are readers.  We read nonfiction, fiction, magazines, social media, and our Bibles daily.

2-We read to the kids.  From the time they were newborns we have been reading to the kids.  We read poetry, old books, new books, books with pictures, books without pictures.  Right now our favorites are the Laura Ingalls Wilder books.  They are learning so much history and culture from these older books.  Its so fun to discuss a time from 100 years ago with them.

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3-We tell stories.  We make up stories about things we see happening in the world.  We also take books we’ve read many times and pretend the pictures are telling a different story altogether.  We insert their names into favorite stories letting them take on the characters.

4-We use voices.  When we read short stories we love making up accents, reading slowly, reading quickly, reading softly, reading loudly.  Its an event!

5-We make reading a privilege.  Reading is an excuse to stay up past bedtime, reading means spending extra family time together.  Books are a special treat.

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And now I can add to the list that, because of this blog, we read to them about themselves.  I cherish the blog my mom kept toward the end of her life; it helps keep her memory alive.  I hope someday my kids can reread my thoughts and remember the story of their lives.

Happy Reading!

 

Becoming the Glue

I am responding to the Five Minute Friday Prompt: Glue

I have admired my Nonnie and my mom all my life.  They have been the family glue.  My mom died of cancer just 2 years ago at the young age of 56 and my grandmother is quite a bit older than that.

So here I am becoming the glue.  I told my mom on her death bed that I thought our family would be okay after she was gone and she nodded and said, “I know.”  I meant it as an encouragement to her that she had done a wonderfully thorough job preparing my siblings and me for what would come in the future and she had built something sticky enough to last beyond her last breath.  I really meant it.

But I didn’t really anticipate that being the oldest daughter with three children of my own would  push me to become the glue in my family.  I am honored to play this new role, but I also resist it.  Aren’t matriarchs older than this?  I wish my mom could still be the glue. But since she can’t I am going to try to be as sticky as I can.

 

5 minutes.

http://lisajobaker.com/2014/04/five-minute-friday-glue/