Saturday, September 29, 2007

"Do you know where my mommy is?"

Today we went to the Fall Festival. I had never been before and was pleased with how nice it was. There were games for the children and a nice sized craft fair for me. Okay not much for the dads but there were fire truck rides. The only disappointment was they ran out of pumpkins before we picked ours. Oh I tried earlier but hubby thought the .50 price was too high. MEN!!!!! So by the time I convinced him that that price was a steal, they of course were all gone.

After the festival ended we all went to the playground and the kids had a blast. How is playground this nice is so close to my house and I didn't know about it? There was a merry-go-round, huge slide climbing set, a smaller slide climber, a jungle gym shaped like a train, two swing sets and bouncy toys to ride. WOW!!!!! Patrick and Brianna had a blast!!! We even made friends.

Well while sitting there watching the joy of my children I noticed a little boy wandering around and asking the grown ups something. When he got close enough I could hear he was lost and looking for him mommy. He was asking everybody "Do you know where my mommy is?" He knew what color purse she had. One woman tried to help him but had two little ones of her own that needed her attention. Dennis was watching the kids so I helped the boy.

Okay the park is a nice size but not big enough that I can't see most of it, maybe all of it. No parents are franticly looking for a child. I know I looked around. I took the boy to the area with the highest concentration of workers and adults. The food pavilion, on the way I got some description of the mom and luckily ran into a police officer. I left the boy with the officer. Before I left the police officer asked the boy what his mom's name was and he didn't know. I asked the boy what his daddy calls his mom and we did get a name out of him then, but as I left a last name was still unknown (?).

I kept an eye on him and also noticed a woman sitting at a picnic table talking on her phone. As she got up the color purse she had was I thought the same color the boy said his mom had but she was far away and I wasn't sure so I watched her. She walked to her car, opened a door did something, closed it, walked slowly back toward the playground. She was still on the phone.

Meanwhile the police officer is walking up to groups of people and asking if anyone was the little boys mom or knew who she was or where she was. Finally the boy saw the woman on the phone and happily announced this was his mom. He ran to her and he was so happy. She still was on the phone and really had no idea why he was so happy. The officer walked up to her and said "Mom, your son was lost." I didn't hear any more but the impression I got was the woman was very unaffected by the incident. The police officer shook his head and walked up to me to thank me for my help. He said this was common; many parents just don't get it.

What if I didn't lead him to that officer? The boy was walking in the complete opposite direction than his mom was sitting at. We were close to the river, close enough that he could have wandered there. Plus there was a creek near by. Not to mention anyone could have been there. If that boy followed me no questions asked to the pavilion he would have gone with anyone I think.

He didn't know important information. His moms name, phone number or address. I try to make sure my kids know that information, but this really showed me how important that information is. I was most upset by the moms seemingly lack of concern. I watched her. She never, even after her son found her, no idea that he was lost. He child was missing for about 15 - 20 minutes and she was happily talking on the phone and obviously not watching him.

This has obviously affected me to write about it. I am full of panic if I don't see my kids for a minute and I sometimes think I am to paranoid. Now I know that I'm not. I teach my kids what to do if they get lost or separated from up. I also do all I can to make sure that doesn't ever happen. I never want to be that mom talking on the phone who has no idea that her child is missing!!!!!!!!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

My Kitten-Napper

Today Brianna decided she didn't need a nap no matter how much I tried to convince her otherwise. The kittens have decided to start exploring dispite mama's objections. I guess swe both have children issues now. So Brianna was loving watching the kittens wander around and was occupied. I had a friend over and we were talking and I noticed that mama cat was being more vocal than usual and wandering around. I got up and saw the door to my room was closed so I opened it since the kittens and mama reside under my bed where no one can reach. I figured she was just upset that she and the kittens were not in the safe place and a new person was in the house.

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Mama ran inside and I went back to talking and Brianna was happily in her room NOT napping. Once my friend left Brianna was telling me all about her kiiten and how she loved it and how it was so cute sleeping. Mama was still looking all over and making all sorts of noise. I asked Brianna where her kitten was and she told me it was in her room. I follwed her into her room and snuggled in her dresser drawer nestled in her clothes was Butterscotch.

No wonder Mama couldn't find him. So "rescued" the kitten and returned him to Mama and she was so happy. Meanwhile Simba was nestled under the bed in the farthest corner happily away from the kitten-nappers reach. Three and a half weeks was all it took for her to pull of this capper. I wonder how much longer it will take before Simba gets smuggled into the drawer too.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

It's a Small World

When I was in High School I had a best friend that I did everything together with. Margie and I were like two peas in a pod. When she feel for one of the guys in our class I knew it was real and would last. It has!!! Over the years I have spend the night at their place a few times. I was there for her when her children were born and we had roles in each other's weddings.

Over the many (way to many) years since High School even with all our effort to stay in touch we started to slip away from each other. Oh I still talked about all the fun stuff we used to do. I would chat with Dennis, my hubby about her and her hubby. We always agreed that we really missed them and really needed to get in touch with them again.

The last time I saw them was when Brianna was baptized. That was a little over two years ago. Why didn't I ever contact them? She just likes one city over. I could have but picked up the phone and called her. I could have written a letter. No I have gotten LAZY.

I use the computer. If I don't have an email address for you or can't contact you through a website or messaging group I won't contact you most likely. I am a computer snob, LOL!!!

So why am I announcing my snobbiness to the world?

Today we went to a Wildlife Festival. I knew one of the professors I was friends with at Buffalo State College would be there so I sought him out. I walk in the tent and there is Margie and all grown up family. I turn around and there is a family that Dennis knows that we have a little of contact with. So in this Festival attended by thousands of people both Dennis and I encountered friends from our past and reconnected.

So now I have a new phone number and at last an email address for my friend. Did I write this on a scrap of paper or into my address book. No, The computer snob that I am entered her contact information into my new cell phone, that I can email messages from.

I love the World Wide Web!!!!!!

We went to a playground after the fest ended and the kids got to run amok. We got to catch up on old times and reflect on how small this world is that we all were in the same place at the same time today.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Watching the Kittens Grow

Well the kittens are about 2 1/2 weeks old. They have open eyes and are walking. If you have never seen a kitten just starting to walk you really need to. Yes, kittens can fall down!!! They have these jerky little steps that they take then all of a sudden BOOM, down they go. It is adorible to watch. It is not like watching a child learning to walk. Maybe because they have four legs and are covered with fur. Of course they have a short stubby tail and they hold it straight out. You never see an adult cat walk that way.

The cutest thing is to watch them raect to Brianna. No one else gets this reaction. She gets with in visual range of the kittens and they run to her. Now this is not a cat run. It is a jerky kitten run, but it is fast. It is almost like they are being dragged against their will to her it is so fast. She of course is delighted to have the kittens come to her.

Mama cat is not so sure. It is the same for cats as humans. Once the babies become mobile all bets are off. She moves them around trying to keep them hidden. Brianna always manages to find them and they come running. Boomerang just gives me a helpless look and I try to explain that kids will do that, LOL!!!!

Butterscotch (he looks like butterscotch topping on an ice cream sundae) is the adventurous one. He is always exploring beyond were mama wants him to go. Simba (think the baby version of the Lion King) is a mamas boy. He is happy staying with her. Funny that seems to be like my children. Brianna (who has claimed Butterscotch as HER kitten) is the one I caught ridding her bigwheel down the street today. Patrick is the one who is always clinging to me to the point that he climbs behind me on a chair to be with me.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Two First Days of School

Beep, Beep, Beep, Beep... The alarm rings it is 7:30 am. I hear my son turn it off then some thunks and clucnks. The door opens and the sound of scuffy fast footsteps appear in the hall. Ah a bathroom run. The sound of a flush and then the scuffy fast feet again. My door opens with a blast and JUMP, I am attacked by kisses all over my face. "Mommy, Mommy lets go to school, see I am all dressed, lets go!!!!!!!" pleads my Kindergartener.

I look and see he has dressed himself. The shirt is too small, the shorts are too big and I see he is wearing his black spiderman undies. I am thinking that his classmates may not be ready to see his titey spidies, LOL!!! So I have to break the news to him that he needs to change his clothes.

Now Brianna wakes up and I have to get her dressed and both fed. Luckily she wants to wear a pretty dress. Bonus both want Waffles. Just pop them in the toaster and done!!!!

We leave a little earlier than planned to get to school. Only because if I didn't Patrick quite lickly would have exploded. Ooops I forgot the camera and had to go back for it. We cross the street to start the walk and I could visualize the racing flag being dropped. And there off is what I heard in my head as Patrick took off full of excitement and joy (why take that away from him prematurly.) At the corners while he waited for me he was literly just bouncing from all the excitement.

We get to school and I manage to get a few pics dispite his pleas to let him go in the building. There is a line of many students and parents. Some are crying some like Patrick just want to get in. It was pretty orderly. We all walk in to the classroom and get him settled. He basically dismissed me. "See you at the end of the day". SO I walk out and realize I have NO idea what time to pick him up at. I go to the office and find out. 3:10 is dismissal time. Glad I checked I thought 3:30, Ooops.

So Brianna and I walk home, I get her hair in pigtails, find her backpack and Daddy comes home from work for her first day of school. She just runs in to the class gives her teacher a HUGE hug and starts to play like she does this all the time. This week we stayed with here next week she will be on her own. I hope she handles it just as well.

After the kids went to bed tonight I started filling out the same information on about 30 different sheets of paper. Sign this form, now that one, ooops don't forget the other on. Wow paperwork times two is a lot!!!! The good news is I don't have to worry about snack at all this month. I like that!!!!!

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Overscheduled? Nope! Just blissfully busy - (my intro blog)

Cheerleading meets 3 nights a week - Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 6-8 pm. We begin our "getting ready" routine at roughly 5 - so as to get there at a reasonable time (a good "pull-through" parking spot means the world to me) and at about quarter to six, we head up that dusty hill that is the West Seneca Football field. We pitch our chairs and send the girls on their way. (yes - girls! Little Loop Cheerleading was the one affordable activity I could involve both of my kids - 6 and 3 - in at the same time. Score one for me on time management!)

So while the kids are practicing, I use this time to do one (or many!) of several things: Chatting with my playgroup buddies (the playgroup - I'll get to that!), Work (my paid job as a Direct Care provider has me pretty much "on call" to field phone calls from my clients at all times), Eat dinner (I love pizza, but the novelty is quickly wearing off) and last, focus on yet another undertaking - Brownies. No, not baking them - leading them. So, score 2 for me on time management! I suppose I could sit and read quietly, but really, what fun would that be?!

Alrighty - so far we've logged Cheerleading and Brownie Girl Scouts... Both activities that my children can benefit from socially, and enjoy as well! Did I mention I work?

I do have a "real" job - and I use the term "real" only because I have made other money-making attempts by selling various products at home parties - and I wanted to differentiate between the two... and while I really did enjoy what I was doing at the time, I found the time and money I was spending to keep afloat was not worth the hassle. My real job consists of me working for a local agency doing what is called "direct care". I help "at risk" families and youth deal with their various challenges, as well as provide advocacy for them. It is extremely rewarding, and I truly enjoy every minute.

Now, even though I technically work, I have a hard time labeling myself as a "working mom". I was a stay at home mom from the time I was pregnant with my first until about this time last year. I do not utilize day care for my children - I rely on family and of course, my husband, to care for the kids while I work. Also, I only log about 5-7 hours a week in the field. I truly do not believe that I am "up there" with those moms who faithfully balance a demanding full time job, a husband, a personal life and of course, their children. So, for all intent and purpose, I am a SAHM who works PT.

Now on to that playgroup. Five years ago, when my oldest was just turning one, I had made several attempts to join and fit into area playgroups, and not that there was anything wrong with them, per se, but being the control freak that I am, I just felt the need to take what I didn't love about the other groups I had found and make one I could love. Since then, WNYMommies has become incredibly successful, and I am thankful every day for my "sisters". I spend a great deal of time managing the operation of this community - both online and in person. Our website and message board requires full time attention, as well as the PR and mom-politics involved.

Cheerleading. Brownies. Work. WNYMommies.

My goodness, I nearly forgot to actually mention the obvious! I'm a wife and mother! The most important aspects of my life - the reason I do everything I do! My loving husband, Scott, who works his behind off in a filthy steel plant every day (and night!) so we can have the life that we have - who has supported me in every adventure I decide to take us on (control freak - remember that!)... and of course my kids, who's names I haven't even mentioned yet!

Sara - my 6 year old. Typical first born, over-achieving, excels at everything she tries. (and unfortunately, is sometimes overlooked and overshadowed by her rambunctious little sister - I'm trying to change that!!) Sara is my original princess, is stoic and has infinite patience and is mature beyond her years.

Erin - my spirited 3 year old. A clone of me, and quirky and brilliant in her own ways - my entertainer. And Erin, even though she often attempts to beat her out for my attention and affections, adores her big sister, Sara.

So for the time being - for today, this is my life... never over-scheduled, but blissfully busy.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Kittens, Butterflies and Kids, Oh My

What an eventful couple of days we had. First the painted Lady butterflies started emering from their chrysalises. We didn't even notice it at first. all of a sudden I looked up at the butterfly pavillion hanging over the stairs and there were three butterflies. I am still amazed at how quick the changes happen. We watched the chryalis form for most of them right before our eyes and just as quick they are out.

Friday morning I call the vet because our cat is overdue to have her kittens. I only know about when she got pregnant because the Daddy cat broke into our house to get to her. Yes that is right it was a crime of passion, LOL!!! I thought her due date was about the 22nd but gave her a little more time just incase. Well the vet had me bring her in and after a half hour of debating with myself I agreed to a kitty c-section. She got spayed at the same time so I don't have to worry about this again.

Well mama cat wants NOTHING to do with the two babies. They are so cute, orange and white like grandpa and daddy. The kids couldn't wait to hold them and the look on their face when they finally got the chance was priceless. They were fascinated by how tiny the bottles were. My daughter has become very good already at making meows sound just like the kittens. I mean scary good.

The kids have been bouncing off the walls the last few days. I can't wait until school starts. With both off to school I thought I would have a few quiet hours. Nope, I have to be mama cat. Well at least they are small and much quieter than the kids. Bonus they don't make as big a mess, at least not yet, LOL!!!