Friday, September 24, 2010

School Days

School has been in session for a little over a month for one of mine and a couple of weeks for the other two. So far we've spent almost $200 on fundraiser items so my little guy can go to a magic show and get VIP treatment. We've bought almost $150 worth of books from one and had to ignore the order forms for the other two. We've had notes sent home from school at least once a week due to inattentive or overactive behavior from one, but the other two are doing well. (knock wood) We have homework every night that takes twice as long as it should due to noncompliance. We've had parents' nights, open houses, and we have parties coming up soon.
I'm glad school has started back up so I have some down time! I have around two hours in the mornings when the youngest ones are at preschool. I do my shopping, errands, and all that fun stuff then. I'm still trying to organize my time so I can get the grunt work done and have time for my writing and jewelry-making while everyone is gone. Hoping to get it all ironed out so that I can post on a more regular basis. Until next time, stay safe and be blessed!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Storms, Vampires and Things That Go Bump In the Night

I got off the bus at a neighborhood daycare when I was in first grade. I was a chubby, clumsy little girl. I was afraid of the big kids on the bus, but never told my parents that. I stayed with a lady in our neighborhood who had a dozen or so kids she took care of. She watched a soap about vampires. The kids all were allowed to watch it too--by her, not our parents. I had nightmares about vampires quite often which confused my parents, I'm sure. I was also terrified of storms. Every time there was a hurricane, my grandparents would come up from Louisiana -- just outside New Orleans. The adults would always watch the weather and talk about hurricanes and the tornadoes that we would get as a result of the Gulf storms.

I was so afraid that I would get a box, fill it with my favorite canned goods, gather my dolls and my box of treasures, and hide in my closet. I remember sitting in there for hours terrified that we'd all die. Or that my parents would die and leave me alone.

I recently went in to check on my six year old and found him under his train table. It was stormy and he woke up afraid. I crawled under the table and put my arms around him. As I held him in my arms, I told him everything would be okay. I assured him we were safe and the storm was only a lot of noise and lights, kind of like fireworks. We climbed out from under the table. I sat on him bed and held him in my lap, all too conscious that in a few years he wouldn't want me to hold him. As I looked down at his sweet little face, I was overcome with love. I hoped that he was comforted by my words. I hoped that 40 years from now he wouldn't remember the fear, only the comfort. I laid him down and covered him up. As I leaned down to kiss him softly on the forehead, he smiled. What a beautiful child.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Thunder, Lightening, and Earthquake: AKA My Children

One of my twins is notorious for having tantrums. And I don't mean crying, begging, whining tantrums. His tantrums are legendary. Kicking, screaming, biting, scratching, foaming-at-the-mouth tantrums are his specialty. He can bring down an entire building. People come from miles around to see him. Get the picture?

Let me say, this child is beautiful-- as are his brothers-- but when these tantrums start, he turns into Linda Blair in The Exorcist. I have never seen such a transformation. His big blue eyes glow, his lips poke out, his cheeks puff up, and he opens his mouth as wide as he can and lets out the loudest, blood curdling scream he can. He could shatter glass with this scream. He reaches volumes that you can't believe are coming from a 49 pound body.

The most recent tantrum occurred in the grocery store. He wasn't especially tired or cranky at the start. I have learned to be wary of that. But he went from angel to full-blown hellion in a matter of seconds. It all started with the word no.

He and his twin asked if they could both push the cart. I said yes. Then they proceeded to push the cart straight toward a display of expensive liquor. Now, I may have wanted this liquor by the end of the grocery shopping fiasco, but at this point I was still in denial. I very quietly, but firmly said, "No, we can't do that. Let's just step aside and let Mom push the cart, please." I know you're thinking I couldn't have been that calm or the tantrum wouldn't have started. But I kid you not, I was.

It began. They both refused to let go of the cart. Then they started fighting against me, getting closer and closer to the display. The liquor was starting to look much more appealing to me now. I pried fingers off the cart and let them know we were done. We were leaving without groceries. Then the madness truly began.

Twin 2, whom I shall refer to as Lightening, because he causes the most damage, threw himself to the floor and started screaming. I attemped to talk to him. That was SO not happening. I picked him up and called to the other two to follow me. Twin 1, whom I shall refer to as Thunder ( because he's loud but is, for the most part, just a lot of noise) started crying and saying he wanted to stay in the store. My oldest child, Earthquake got "that look" in his eyes. I stopped, looked him in the eyes and reminded him he wasn't in trouble YET. Thankfully, he backed down. Thunder continued to cry, but followed me out of the store. In the meantime, Lightening was kicking, screaming, slapping me, and calling me names. I had him in a tight grip and continued out of the store and into the parking lot.

Keep in mind, that no less than a thousand or so people were witnessing this (okay, a slight exaggeration), including some people who knew us, and NO ONE offered to help. (And in all fairness, I didn't really expect them to. I mean, Linda Blair was scary in this role, but Lightening is pure horror.) I was trying to decide if I REALLY want to be a mother at this point. I mean, they have that law so you can return them to the hospital, right?

I finally got them to the car and ordered, yes ordered, the other two to get in their seats. By this point, I was so NOT calm and reasonable. I'm not even sure I remembered what those words meant. I was angry. No, not angry. I was MAD!! I fought with Lightening for around 30 minutes, trying to get him into his seat and strapped in to no avail. I finally resorted to a pretend call to the police to assist me with this deliquent child. (I know, not the best move, but at this point I was mentally, physically, and emotionally done.) It worked. He stopped fighting, got in his seat and strapped in.

My clothes were soaking wet, my arms and legs shaking, and THEN these lovely children wanted to know if we could go get a milkshake for a treat. They HAD to be joking, tight? We went straight home. I know, you're shocked. Milk shake, my eye.

On the way home, Lightening started to amp up again. When I pulled into the garage, my husband heard the screaming all the way in the house --the child, not me. I was on my way around to get the little DARLING out of the van, not sure if I'd bother with the door or just aim him out the window, and Dad came out and offered to get him out. Good idea, VERY good idea.

We got all three boys inside and two of the three settled down. Lightening, on the other hand, was still going strong. He was put in his room and calmed down after about 30 minutes. Tantrum done and so was I.

(Copyright 2010, Linda Rosendale)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


My dad is one of the strongest men I've ever known. As a young child I remember following him around like a shadow. He hunted and fished and I loved to "help" him dress dove ("peel birds" ) and was fascinated with touching fish. I thought the eyes were especially cool. (ick!) As I got older, he taught me how to do minor repairs on the car and the house.

He and I also share a love for woodworking. We made countless things together. I still have some of the first pieces he made. I developed that talent and for years I worked on dollhouses, both from kits and from "scratch". Each time I made a cut or painted a wall, I thought of Dad.

As a teenager, I struggled with independence, finding my place in the world and succeeded in driving my parents crazy. I wasn't a lot better as a young adult, but we made it through. Dad has always been protective of his girls, but the older I get the more I realize it's because of his love for us.

When I got married and moved away from family, I was grateful for all I learned from my parents. And as a mom, I realize how hard it is to let go. As your children grow, you have to let them learn to crawl, walk, and climb. And it never stops. You want to keep them from being hurt, from making mistakes. But that wouldn't teach them anything. By our mistakes, we learn and grow.

Now my dad is facing some serious health problems. And I want him to know how much I love and respect him. A part of that love involves understanding his pain and subsequent choices he is struggling with. The little girl in me wants to tell him to keep fighting and NEVER give up. But the adult daughter knows when my dad talks about the pain he feels and how his quality of life is suffering, that I cannot ask him to do anything for me. I love my dad enough to respect his decisions, whatever they may be. And I cherish him for the man he was then and the man he is now. Whatever his decision, it will be one he has thought about, prayed about.

I find wanting to help but knowing I can't. As he once did with me, I have to let go. I have to trust in my dad's ability to decide what he needs. I have to trust in God to lead him in his decisions. I pray for him daily, several times a day.

I owe my dad a thank you. A thank you for everything he has done and continues to do. He has such a strength of character, such a love of life. He taught me so much as I grew up. He continues to do so. I understand those life-lessons he taught me. I want to teach my boys those lessons. I only hope I can do half as well as he has and still does.

We may not live close to each other, but he IS here with me. I carry him in my heart, always.

(Copyright 2010, Linda Rosendale)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Grandma's House

Splashing in puddles after a summer rain.

The smell of honeysuckle on a hot summer night.

The sound of a storm tearing the branches from the trees.

Fireflies dancing through the night.

Freight trains roaring down the tracks.

Playing games around the kitchen table perched on a stack of books.

Secrets shared on the front porch swing.

Tea so sweet it made your teeth ache.

A crumpled dollar bill pressed into your hand.

A place to rest, to belong, always.

Prayers said all day every day.

A love unending, unconditional.

A heart big enough to love many, but not strong enough to continue beating.

An end to a life, to a family, to unity.

A sorrow unequal to any other.

(Copyright 2010, Linda Rosendale)

Ready to Fly

You take small steps toward the edge.

You stumble and I wait while you find your balance.

You look back at me briefly.

I smile to let you know I am here.

My heart aches as you smile bravely and turn away.

You spread your wings and fly.

My joy is overwhelming.

(Copyright 2010, Linda Rosendale)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

If You See Your Twin

If you see your twin, tell her she is never far from my thoughts. Tell her I love her, cherish her and mourn her.

If you see your twin, tell her that you have been loved and cherished. Tell her you are intelligent, loving, and beautiful. Tell her I didn’t let you know about her until now. I didn’t want you to feel less than complete, less perfect.

If you see your twin, tell her I’m sorry I couldn’t fight harder for her. Sorry she’ll never get the chance to grow and learn. To love. Tell her I’d love to have seen her and held her. Tell her I wanted her to survive. I mourn her. I rejoice for her. She is free.

If you see your twin, you will know as only a twin can. She’ll be the life-force in someone or something you love and connect with as you are connected with her. She’s a part of you. A part of me. She may be a butterfly, a flower, a child, a friend. Only you will know as only a twin can, that it is her.

I mourn her.

I rejoice for her.

I love her.

I love you.

(Copyright 2008, Linda Rosendale)