Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Love, Regret and Pizza

I was really shitty to my boy yesterday.
I mean really shitty. Not "grouchy" or "thoughtless," but out and out mean.
It's hard to talk about, but I know that we've all done it. I decided it might help me lay down the burden of it if I just put it out there.
I just lost it because I had expectations and they were not met. I wanted to go the unschooling park day and visit with friends and I wanted Finn to play with the other children or at least just play on the playscape so I could have a chance to NOT play with him. Well, firstly, it wasn't park day. My days have been really off for some reason (maybe this lingering flu/cough/malaise/plague?). That put me in a grouchy mood. I wanted to connect with some mamas, especially one I have been trying to connect with for awhile. Then Finny was really needing me to stay close. Close as in RIGHT THERE EVERY SECOND. I followed him around for awhile and then I told him I was gonna sit right there and just watch while he climbed. About, oh, 5 seconds later he came over and said he was surrrre feeling hungry and thirsty (we had plans to go eat pizza after being at the park). At this point I was just overtaken by a demon mother. Where she came from, I have no idea. I hope to never meet her again. I grabbed my keys and stormed out of the park with him running got worse before it got better. I said some ugly things that I can't even bring myself to remember much less write. We were both crying as we drove to the pizza place. We got inside and I ordered his pizza. I came and sat down and we both started crying and crying. I took him in my arms and rocked him while sobbing my apologies. The sweet pizza guy boxed our food up without being asked and we drove home. We climbed on the couch and held each other for an hour. I cried and cried and told him how terribly, terribly sorry I was. I told him all that I thought had happened and he listened and we talked. He said it was all OK. That he was mad and sad, but that he knew I didn't mean what I said and that he loved me anyway.
I asked him to try and tell me how he feels when we are somewhere and he can't play without me. HOW that feels inside him - to help me better understand. He said, and I quote (with tears streaming down my face):
"When you're far away from me my heart feels very tiny. When I know you're close by, it feels bigger. My heart feels better when it is bigger. It feels scary when it's tiny."
SO, today we had a redo. We went to the same park and I told him that I would stay right with him and play with him and stay just as close as he needed me. We had a really good time. I figure today is Day One of being the best mama I can be. I can't do anything about yesterday that I haven't already done, but I sure can try not to do that again.
Expectations! They are just the cause of so much crap in my life. That's my new goal - I'm trying to stay in the moment and out of expectation. I am actually grateful for that terrible few moments. They were a reminder to me of who and what I do not want to be. They provided me with valuable contrast. The contrast between who I want to be and who I sometimes am. I HATED the way I felt when I was so mad. I choose to try and not feel that way anymore. Now, I have this experience of "when I go to the park with Finn I need to not have any expectations of how he will play." I have that information now and I will choose to use it. I am growing. OW.
Thank god my sweet son and I have a relationship that is based in love and respect. I know we're not permanently wounded by my crap. We're raw and tender, but really OK.
Michele, Jack (in England) and Finnigan the Curious

Sunday, March 15, 2009

LOVE your frock!

How do you like Finn's new swimsuit?
Isn't it FAB? His friend Bowie, who has very eclectic taste in clothing, picked this beauty up at Target. The moment Finn saw it he just knew he had to have one. We think they have adorable taste. We did explain to him (as did Bowie's parents) that people will probably think he's a girl when he wears this. He said he knew that and that he didn't care. There you have it!
How lucky are we to live in a time that a little boy can wear a girl's one-piece suit and his mama and daddy and friends think it's not only fine, but cool.
A side note to all the ladies reading this: boys pick one-piece suits out of their butts just like we do ! He performed the universal "butt-pick" within moments of putting it on. I was dying.
Y'all come over and we'll go swimming...bring your one-piece!

Michele, Jack and Finnigan the Curious(ly dressed)

Toys! Toys! Toys!

We are the luckiest family in the world to have "Grandmary Claus!"
I just can't even begin to tell you all the wonderful and amazing toys she has sent us over the years. Finn absolutely LOVES toys. Some children can take 'em or leave 'em, but Finny is one of those who simply loves them. I hear lots of parents say that they buy their kids toys and they go untouched. NOT here...Finny really does play with almost all his toys... a LOT.
This spin art is one our all-time favorite gifts from Grandmary. If you're looking for a new toy for you child please let me recommend this one. The only downside to it is the 134,398,587,487 pieces of spin art you will end up with. If you're a mama like me, you can't bring yourself to throw away anything your child has created. We finally got a big pizza box from Slices and Ices and I keep them all in there. I have plans to make a BLURB book out of all of them...some day.
Here's another new favorite - Haba dominoes. Aren't they just beautiful? They come with TONS of beautifully colored dominoes that you can do all kinds of things with. We use them as dominoes, blocks, racetracks, Army barracks (ahem), just all kinds of things.
Thank you sweet Grandmary!

Y'all come on over and we'll play with some toys!


Michele, Jack and Finnigan the Curious

PS Don't you love our Santa lamp? We leave him up year-round cuz who doesn't love a Santa lamp?

Family Art (and feet)

One of the things we like to do late at night when everyone is tired, but no one feels like sleeping yet is family art. There's something so fun about all of us painting together. We roll out a big, long strip of paper (Save your Christmas paper. If you buy cheapo paper like I do then you can just turn it over and you'll have a big roll of white paper to draw on!)
Something so interesting happens when we all paint together - I, the family "crafter" draw very traditional things and I can't seem to think outside that box. I draw houses and flowers and birds and rainbows, stuff like that. My two boys, SO much the engineers, will just draw the loveliest random stuff. They use the coolest color combos and cover the whole paper with abandon. I sit over in my spot, drawing the way I was "taught."
Finn likes to paint then cover it all up with black. He does this a lot. He says he likes knowing that his picture is hiding under the black. Cool. Strange and cool.
Who's crafty now, huh?
Michele, Jack and Finnigan the Curious

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Finn + Uncle Roo = LOVE

We made our annual trip to Denver in February and what a blast it was!
Uncle Roo must be the most awesome uncle who ever lived. For a single guy with no interest in having a family of his own, this man can PLAY! He just played with Finn like there was no tomorrow. Karate, football, catch, wrestling, you name it. AND he made chocolate chip cookies. AND he gives Finn Dr. Pepper.
We went out to eat and Roo let Finn do to him all the crazy boychild things that his Dad and I can't really get on board with: poke at his food, climb on him while eating, stick him with a fork, talk about poop while eating, etc. etc.. He took us to a park and rolled down the hill with Finn over and over. He took us on the train and the electric city bus. He made Finn hot chocolate every time we came into his building. The fun and patience and joy was never ending.
Finn told me on the way home that next time we go to Colorado we are NOT going to stay with Daddy in Boulder, we are simply going to Uncle Roo's and staying there the whole time. He was quite adamant about it.
I think they're both lucky ducks.
Michele, Jack and Finnigan the Curious

Sweet Grandmary turns 75!

Oh my goodness! How can it BE that my sweet mama is 75?
And a lovely 75 she is!
We had ourselves a good ole time of it too. Finn and Jack and I drove over for a couple of nights. We all went to Beaumont for lunch with 2 of Mama's oldest friends; Carol Jean and Miss Sonia. They've been friends since before I was born. I think it's going on 50 years. FIFTY YEARS of being friends and all that that entails - babies, divorces, second marriages, losing children, gaining grandchildren, loving, grieving, living - you know, friends.
I was so honored to be there for this celebration of life and love and women. Even though we had some fine men there, it seemed to be so much about us women. How we just go on and on and love and live in spite of it all. What a beautiful and magical example these women have been to me.
Most of all my Mama. I love my Mama so much it hurts. She is my anchor, my compass, my sail. Without her I would lost at sea...gone adrift never to return. Not a day goes by that I do not think of her and feel her in my heart. I am eternally grateful I got to give her a grandchild. I am even more grateful that my child gets to know his Grandmary. I could have never explained to him how magical she was if he had not known her for himself.
Happy Birthday Grandmary. We love you so.
Michele, Jack and Finnigan the Curious