Thursday, September 19, 2002

Busy day today! This morning I got up early with Katja and Rick as I'm liking it more and more, to have some time to get chores done before the younger kids go to school. This morning I managed to straighten out 4 kitchen cupboards and a drawer, it makes me feel like I accomplished something immediately.

Brynna meanwhile has become quite used to her new twice daily walks to bring Kai and Saskia to school. It's as if she can tell time! She'll start jumping and panting right around the time we're supposed to leave, both in the morning and the afternoon! This afternoon, I was actually planning on getting the kids by car, as we had to head off right away, but Brynna's enthusiasm about the walk made me leash her anyway and walk instead. I think the special attention of the walk helps the rest of her behavior too, as she's not whining about food, water or going out nearly as much these days.

After taking the kids to school I headed off to the gym and thankfully met friends to talk during the workout, which, as always made it seem over with way faster! Then some groceries at Shoppers Food Warehouse next door. I'm trying to slip some vitamins and breakfast into Saskia by offering her Ovaltine. She refuses to eat anything for breakfast and I figure drinking chocolate milk fortified with vitamins is at least something. I hate the thought of her sitting in her class with a practicallly empty stomach! I've tried just about everything, but I think she's like me, her throat doesn't "open up" until an hour or so after waking up.

After the kids got out of school, we went to the opening of Rick's new office. It was a grand affair and Rick had worked hard on getting everything together in time, all the connections and wiring and electronics, he's a true wizard at it. It was fun to hear everyone speak so highly of him! It made my wife's heart swell with pride :).

Governor Warner of Virginia did the official opening and by the time the kids and I arrived that was all over and done with. But Katja wanted to see if the governor was still there and we were lucky, he was just about to leave, but I introduced the kids to him and then he suggested to have a picture taken. I'll have to email his photographer for a copy. Katja was so excited to have met the governor, she told everyone that wanted to hear about it :).

At 6 we rushed home, as we had to be at the kids' school at 7 for Back to School night. We quickly got the kids Mickey D's, bad, bad parents that we are! But there really was no time for anything else. Katja made me feel slightly better about it by getting a salad there.

The Back to School night was fun. We missed the little session with all the politicians, the principal and whoever else doing their talks and went straight to the classrooms. Both kids had made things for us, Saskia had a mystery paper with the color of her hair (orange :)) and eyes (green) and we had to guess who she was. She has a fun teacher, who really loves to teach first grade, it's quite obvious.

Kai in fifth grade rotates among 3 teachers for math, science and social studies. His homeroom teacher is a really nice lady, I had a long talk with her on the field trip last week. His fourth grade teacher has him for math and she was telling me just how smart he is, but that he kind of keeps it hidden. This is what I like about this school, because that's exactly the case! Kai is a GT student, but we didn't send him to the special center, because he hates doing homework and we envisioned 4 years of struggle over that. Some might argue we're not doing him a favor by "giving in", but I firmly believe, that a child should enjoy school and he does. He wouldn't if he would have to work on hours and hours of homework. We do extra stuff at home and he's in the pull out GT program at school, but that's all stuff he enjoys doing. Anyway, it's fun to see how well the teachers read the children.

Now we're about to eat dinner at 9:30pm, yawn! But it was a fun day!

Wednesday, September 18, 2002

A gorgeous day today! I had to get up early with Katja, as Rick was gone before dawn for a presentation downtown. Katja leaves at 6:55 and so I had a whole 35 mins before I had to wake the younger ones up. Hey, maybe enough time to get the refrigerator (which was admittedly gross!) cleaned out. So I started on that and by the time I had to walk them to school, I had a sparkling clean refrigerator. What a feeling of accomplishment that was!

I had a super workout and personal training session and then went to Fresh Fields for some more of the fresh cheese (yogurt like with fruit flavors) that Kai and Saskia love. And of course, I had to get myself one of their great salads for lunch.

For once there was nowhere to go this afternoon, so I took pictures of a beautiful butterfly on our bushes. I put my butterfly and other insect pics on my Webshots page, under butterflies and insects. Then I walked Brynna to the school to pick up the kids.

Parker (our neighbor's son) and Saskia play so well these days! They pretend all kinds of stuff while playing house, very cute! They can't wait to see each other after school, Parker is in Kindergarten and Saskia in first grade. I hope the friendship lasts, I think a boy-girl friendship is quite cool!

Tonight, Kai and Rick went to Kai's first scouting meeting. I have mixed feelings about the Boy Scouts, but more about that later as it's late.

Tuesday, September 17, 2002

It's been a hectic week! I'm not going to go over every day, no energy.

I saw my mother last on Saturday and now have no idea when I'll see her again, she left yesterday afternoon forever. Very weird feeling. She didn't say goodbye to any of us, really, just to my dad.
Last night was a difficult night. It's hard to grasp, that someone we saw daily and with whom we traveled and had great times together, changed so much over the course of a year and just eliminated her husband, children and grandchildren from her life.

I keep telling the children, that, even if I live to be a hundred, I'll always be their *mother*. That task, or even gift, won't magically be over when they're adults and I'm 62 or whatever age. I vow to be the best grandmother my grandchildren could wish for. I'm writing this down, black and white, because I want to be able to refer to it again.

I had to re-affirm today for myself, what it means to be a mother and grandmother. I know my own mother does not correspond to the descriptions, but I swear I will! I will not be perfect, but I'll work darned hard at it! I looked up some poems that speak to me about this subject and I'm posting them here for my blog tonight. I'm mourning my mother, I know she is not dead, but as of yesterday, she has chosen a new family and life as we knew it with her will never be again.

The first 2 poems are about the Mother I hope to be and the third about the way my own Grandmother (from father's side) was and how I hope to be a Grandmother some day.


When you're a child she walks before you,
To set an example.
When you're a teenager she walks behind you
To be there should you need her.
When you're an adult she walks beside you
So that as two friends you can enjoy life together..

- Author Unknown.

A Mother's Love

There are times when only a Mother's love
Can understand our tears,
Can soothe our disappoints
And calm all of our fears.
There are times when only a Mother's love
Can share the joy we feel
When something we've dreamed about
Quite suddenly is real.

There are times when only a Mother's faith
Can help us on life's way
And inspire in us the confidence
We need from day to day.

For a Mother's heart and a Mother's faith
And a Mother's steadfast love
Were fashioned by the Angels
And sent from God above...

- Author Unknown.


A grandmother has a special talent-
She always knows just what to do
To make her grandchildren happy
And to show she loves them, too.

At the family get-togethers,
She's the first person to look for-
She can entertain small children for hours,
And they always keep asking for more.

You can tell when a grandmother's teasing
By the twinkle that shines in her eyes-
She's an expert at settling problems,
For she's loving, patient and wise.

Her grandchildren always admire her,
Even when they are grown-
They always feel proud and happy
To claim Grandmother as their own!

~By Mary Dawson Hughes~