June 30, 2011
June 29, 2011
For Easter, my parents gave each of the monkeys a $10 gift card to a local dollar-type store, $5 Below.
My kids love this store.
It’s full of crappy stuff that kids love.
If you look carefully, you can sometimes find a gem or two, but for the most part, you can guarantee that what you leave with will be broken in a week’s time.
Anyway, the forecast called for thunderstorms today, and the kids decided they didn’t want to risk the pool.
So, we decided to head to $5 Below so the kids could use their gift cards.
They got their wallets in order before we left.
Monkey Girl had a few extra dollars in her wallet, plus her $10 gift card, plus a $5 gift card she had received from her Girl Scout leaders at their pool party.
Monkey in the Middle had his $10 gift card, plus $2 cash that he (amazingly) hadn’t already spent from money he had earned doing his chores.
Baby Monkey had his $10 gift card from Easter.
Monkey in the Middle immediately said “Hey, Baby Monkey…I’ll give you one of my dollars so we both have $11.”
Baby Monkey was appropriately grateful and I was a proud Mama.
Off to the store we went, and after 45 minutes, we finally walked out.
What took so long was that they were really very thoughtful about what they wanted to buy.
Monkey in the Middle, in particular.
We got in and out of the checkout line at least four times as he changed his mind about what to get.
After the third time, I began to realize that the reason he was changing his mind so often was because the money was his.
We’ve stopped in to that store a few times, here and there, and I’ve offered to get everyone one thing, and they pick quickly and leave with garbage.
Yet, today, the monkeys were spending their own money and they wanted to make good choices and get the best items for their cash.
So, when we finally left, Monkey Girl had 2 hot pink hair extensions for her hair (she’s been eyeing these for quite some time), an electronic pet called a Meeba, and a Super Secret Spy kit. I haven’t seen her since we got home, as she’s been in her room fingerprinting things.
Baby Monkey had a robot –arm-grabber-thingy that he’s been coveting, a Batman movie, and 3 SpiderMan action figures.
And, Monkey in the Middle left with a Giants toy truck that has doors that open and close, a foam bat extension for the Wii remote for the baseball game, and a fancy race car.
With the exception of the hair extensions and the robot-arm-grabber-thingy, I’d hesitate to call any of it crap, and I was proud to see them really agonize over choosing just the right thing.
There is power in ownership, even when it’s just the ownership of the money that is being used to buy something.
Good lesson for my family and me.
June 28, 2011
So, I believe you may have gleaned from many of my posts, here, over the past two years, the fact that Monkey Girl is a good kid.
A seriously good kid.
So, you can imagine the amount of inside giggles I got from the following story.
Monday afternoon, the kids and I took the donations from Monkey Girl’s birthday party to the Interfaith Food Pantry.
The Food Pantry happens to be right next to the county Juvenile Detention Center.
I’m not sure how my kids know about Juvie, but they do.
In fact, Monkey in the Middle was talking about Juvie just the other day.
Anyway, as we drive by, Monkey Girl kind of slumps in her seat and gets quiet.
I say, “What’s the matter, sweetie?”
She says, “I think I’m going to wind up in Juvie.”
I almost swerved right off the road.
“I think I’m going to wind up in Juvie.”
“What would you ever do to end up in Juvie?”
Then, she went on to list the things she’s done to begin the long road to Juvie.
You know, things like rolling her eyes when I’ve asked her to do something, wishing I had made something else for dinner, waiting until her brother falls asleep, on sleepover nights, and then moving him over so she can have more space.
Sarcastic Amy had to bite her tongue to stop myself from saying “Yep…totally Juvie-worthy.”
It was hard. Really hard, but I could see that she was serious.
So, I was able to control myself and respond with a “Sweetheart, you will never, ever go to Juvie.”
And from the back seat, Monkey in the Middle called out, “Yeah…I’m TOTALLY going to Juvie before you are!”
June 27, 2011
Once upon a time, there was a little girl.
She asked her Mama if she could get her hair cut for the summer.
Her Mama said, “Are you sure? You love your long hair!”
The little girl said, ‘Yep!”
And so, she did.
And the little girl was happy.
June 26, 2011
Thanks to Google Reader, I read many, many blogs.
I say it is thanks to GR, because without being able to have the blog updates sent to one, central location, I’d never be able to stay on top of them all.
Seriously…it’s a great thing.
You should try it.
Anyway, one of my favorite blogs is 6512 and Growing
Rachel, her husband Dan and children Col and Rose lead a completely different life than I do.
And while I am more than happy and satisfied in my life, every now and then, I’d like for my family to switch places for hers, so that my children could have some of the life experiences hers are exposed to every day.
While I could definitely forgo the hunting and skinning of the animals (works beautifully for them, I’ll take the deli case at ShopRite) it just seems to be such a peaceful and “authentic” life.
Today’s post had me longing for the switch, again.
Visit her blog, if you get a chance, and read about her 3 day camping trip, an experience the likes of which they have often, and I challenge you not to wish that you, too, were spending your days as they do.
June 25, 2011
For comedy, I love Modern Family.
For drama, I love Bones.
However, there are about 30 other shows in my line-up that I love almost equally. These two just get a little edge over the others.
June 24, 2011
(The Friday Five taken from The Gypsy Mama)
The end of the week – a good time for few words.
Want to take five minutes with me and see which ones bubble to the surface?
Let’s just write and not worry if it’s just right or not.
Today’s prompt – Wonder
Last night I was full of wonder as I lay on my bed.
Every summer I rewatch the Little House on the Prairie series. Head to the library and rent them all, one disc at a time.
For someone as tech involved as I am, it may seem strange that I am so drawn to stories about a much, much simpler time, but I am. I love it. It reinvigorates me to center on the home and I really enjoy it.
So, Real Man and I were on the bed, me watching the show while playing with the baby, he playing on his Xoom tablet. One by one, the monkeys made their way into the room. First, Monkey Girl, then Baby Monkey, then, finally, Monkey in the Middle. Soon, all 6 of us were snuggled on our bed, bodies crisscrossed, entangled, resting on each other, chatting and watching and enjoying.
And that’s where the wonder entered the mix. I looked around and couldn’t believe that this was my family. This baby with impossibly tiny toes and fingers that grab things and push him forward as he begins the process of trying to crawl. This girl who loves with her whole heart, making me smile as she managed to read a book AND watch the show AND talk to the rest of us about her day. This 7-year old boy who never, ever stops, just resting and watching and asking questions as he views them completing tasks that are completely foreign to him, like washing clothes on a washboard and in a bucket. That little boy, who fell fast asleep at the foot of the bed, completely safe and secure in the love and comfort of his family. And, that Real Man, sitting next to me, watching over all of us, smiling to himself knowing that we all belong to him, just as much as he belongs to all of us.
Every inch of this bed covered with the people that make me complete and I was filled with wonder. Wonder that, not only had we created life, but that we had nurtured it and help it to grow into these little, amazing beings. Wonder at the unlimited potential inside each of them. Wonder at the science of how they form and grow, and wonder
Well, there it is. Take it for what it’s worth.
I think my favorite thing about the Friday Five is that everyone’s interpretation of the prompt is so wonderfully different. If you visit The Gypsy Mama you can see that her thoughts on “wonder” vary greatly from mine, but are wonderful to read.
Hope you’ve enjoyed today’s offering.
June 19, 2011
Monkey Girl had her long-awaited (4 months overdue) birthday party this weekend.
It was a roller-skating party and it was fun.
A lot of fun.
Monkey Girl asked her friends to forgo bringing her a gift, and to instead, please bring a donation to the local food pantry.
This wasn’t an original idea of hers; a friend of hers did this with a party earlier in the year and she really liked the sentiment behind it.
She toyed with it for months.
Then, when it was time to send the invitations, she decided she definitely wanted to do it.
And so, when we wrote the invitations, we asked that, in lieu of a gift for her, to please bring a donation for the food pantry.
Wow, did her friends comply.
She had 8 friends come to the party and look at everything they donated:
When she saw the pile put on the coffee table like that, she felt good.
Looking at the picture, I realize it doesn’t do it justice. It goes back to cover about half of the coffee table.
When we bring it to the food pantry this week, she’ll feel even better.
Man, am I proud of her and impressed by the generosity of her friends.
It was a good day.