Tag Archives: Elijah

The New Face of Brave

Elijah pool 1Elijah has been taking swimming lessons every Tuesday and Thursday evening for a few weeks. The first night we got there they had him in level 3. We aren’t a huge “spend the summer at the pool” family…so he has been in a big pool maybe 3 times.

He didn’t know a thing about it.

They thankfully moved him into the Level 1 class after the first night and it has been fun to watch him swim. He works hard, and even when it is tough, he smiles and keeps going.

He is one brave boy, my Elijah.

Tonight the teacher asked at the beginning of the class who wanted to jump off the diving board at the end of class.

He initially didn’t raise his hand and I was secretly relieved.

I had visions of a drowning accident, what if he let go of his noodle…what if she didn’t catch him. The water is 13ft deep and he doesn’t know how to swim yet without assistance.

Quite honestly, the whole idea seemed ludicrous to me…what was she thinking?! 

At the end of the class they headed towards the diving pool….and there was Elijah right in line with the rest of the kids.

Was he going to go through with it?

Elijah Pool 2He walked out on that board and put his toes on the very edge just like his teacher said. She was treading water ready to catch them as they jumped.

And then he just went for it.

Elijah Pool 3

What I loved most was that he didn’t timidly jump in, he leaped.

He trusted the noodle float, he trusted his swim instructor and he went for it.

My brave boy Elijah is such an example to me. He shows me how to be brave.

Elijah Pool 4

So often I won’t even step up to the ladder.

I know that I am going to be scared looking down at the unknown. I feel unsure of the next step and so I quit before I start.

And taking that leap? Heavens no. I am not brave like that…

But my boy reminded me today that sometimes we make a choice to do something even when we feel afraid.

Elijah told me later that he initially didn’t want to do it, but then he decided to be brave and try.

We all have that choice don’t we?

When we are facing a big decision, a job change, an unknown situation of any kind…we have a choice.

We can make the choice to stay stuck in fear, or we can choose to jump anyways.

Elijah trusted he would be ok, he choice faith over fear and became the new face of brave for me.

What a gift to watch it all unfold before my eyes.

Next time I am faced with something that induces fear, or worry or doubt I will remember my boy who lept into the scary and came out a little bit stronger from the experience.

Mom Confessions – Smiths in Real Life – Part Four

Mom Confessions

This week feels less like a “confession” and more like “life theses days” but there has been a lot going on and honestly this is a way for me to remember it all!  And even though I would love for you all to go on believing that I have it all together, that isn’t my reality. At all. So I am joining up with my friend Anna over at Girl With Blog and sharing some of my Mom Confessions.

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Karlena threw a massive fit after dance class last week because I wouldn’t let her go in the fish pool in our backyard. It was 65 degrees.  Yes it was warmer than it had been for weeks, but it was NOT pool weather, especially not at 5pm. Heck I don’t even know where the darn pool even is right now! I said no. She screamed her ever loving head off for like 10 minutes. So I did what any mom would do. I took a video of her and posted it to FB. Because sometimes seeing another child throwing a fit makes you feel better about your own life. Mama friends, you are welcome.

This young man is the future graduating class of 2028!

Elijah kindergarten

We had kindergarten roundup, which felt oddly like a sale-pitch for parents. I guess because there are choices now maybe it has become a sales-pitch? It was good – but a little weird! 🙂 And how old does 2028 make you feel? OLD? Yeah me too!

This little miss had a fun visit to the dentist this past week…

Karlena dentist

Yes, she had 2 cavities. I think I shared before that I feel like that is a reflection on me as a mother, but whatever…I am getting over it. We will continue to brush, but when it is a battle…typically I lose. :/ Anyways. She got the laughy gas but did SO good. It was a fairly long appointment because they have to let the gas kick in, let the tooth get “sleepy”…and then do the fixes. She handled it like a champ though, so I was proud of her!

A few weeks ago we had a home appraisal done. We are finalizing a refi this week, lower interest and no more PMI (#winning) but as a part of that we had to have a home appraisal. No biggie right? That is until you remember on the morning of that a stranger is going to be coming into your home AND taking pictures of all the rooms and your home is a PIT…that you go into complete and total panic mode.

So what did we do? We skipped work for 2 hrs that morning and FRANTICALLY cleaned. I was a hot sweaty mess. I just threw things into closets and said a prayer he wouldn’t need to open them for any reason (he didn’t PTL!!!) But now 3+ weeks later I have never gone back and cleaned up my mess. Nope…haven’t even thought of it. And maybe never will open the doors again if I can avoid it all together! 😉

Elijah became a man this past week when he came home with this….

Elijah mustache man

Isn’t it awesome? There was a carnival at the school he attends and he came home with these tattoos! 🙂 He looks so adorable!

And finally my oldest went to prom this past weekend. He went with friends from our old hometown. I didn’t get to see him in person because we had things to be at here so I had other moms taking pictures for me! He looks so grown up to me…it is probably better that I wasn’t there because I would have embarrassed him with all the tears! 🙂

Isaac PromWell thanks for hanging in there with me this week…I will try and be more confessional next week!

Mom Confessions – Smiths in Real Life – Part Three

Mom Confessions

This week has felt harder than some…and I am going to try and bring some humor to my post but may just need a virtual shoulder to cry on this week. So even though I would love for you all to go on believing that I have it all together, that isn’t my reality. At all. So I am joining up with my friend Anna over at Girl With Blog and sharing some of my Mom Confessions.

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For some humor (or horror) you take your pick…my week started with this “reality check” from my sweet little miss….I was changing into my painting clothes this weekend and Karlena happened into my room. She took one look at me and said (and I swear I am not kidding) “EEEWWWW!” So me, the clueless one, asks what she is eewwwwing, to which she responds… “Your legs mama, they are SOOO GROSS!” “They are just sooo gross.”

And then she left the room. And so did my self-esteem. 😉 Yes my legs are white, and thankfully because of my genetic background, quite vein-y. But gross? Really was that necessary? (I will spare you all a picture because well at this point I can’t take any more rejection!)

This is what I had for breakfast on Monday…

Cookie Bar

Cookie Bar

I have no self control. I honestly felt that because of all the oatmeal and peanut butter in it that it was a lot like a healthy snack. This on the morning that I could have  should have started a 40 day sugar fast with the ladies over at Mother of Boys. Who am I kidding though, right now I am too emotionally unstable to be giving up sugar. That is probably just why I should…but it isn’t happening today.

And why am I so emotionally unstable you might ask?

Well for starters…this…

Isaac 18

I think the reality of this all is really setting in. My oldest, the one I made ALL the mistakes with, is actually graduating and like leaving (probably forever, I mean he will visit but he may never live long term with us again.) And I realize that this is a part of life, and I am so proud of him and excited to see him chase his dreams but oh the “letting go” is hard isn’t it?

And I feel like such a complete and total failure when it comes to what I should have done already for his graduation party. The invitations aren’t even addressed, I don’t have a single picture board made…heck when our external hard drive died 2 years ago we lost like 7 years of his documented digital life that I won’t ever get back.

A few years ago I made these amazing boards for a friends son(s) who were graduating. I totally love doing that kind of thing, but now my first born is graduating and I haven’t done anything and don’t know how in a month I can. Can we say #momguilt. Ugh.

The reality is he probably doesn’t care but I also don’t want him to think he isn’t super important. I don’t want our party to be totally lame compared to everyone else’s. How 11th grade is that?!

I need therapy.

And for the love of all things good and holy how do you plan for a party when you have NO IDEA how many people will come? I ordered 100 cupcakes, I think that will be enough, but what if it is short…what if we only need 30. Seriously I need therapy don’t I?!

So there you have it.

And to add to the fun, Elijah has been sick for the past 2 days. Bad stomach pains…we thought he was using the bathroom normally, if you catch my drift…but apparently maybe not as much as he should.

So he missed a day of school last week because of a stomach ache. Then 2 this week…I took him into the clinic this morning just to make sure it wasn’t something more serious.

Elijah sick

Turns out his belly is full of some pretty hard poo. Yep that’s fun! So we are upping our fiber, eating some dried apricots and drinking a lot of water. All good stuff….or will hopefully produce some “good stuff.”

So with that I bid adieu. 😉

***And a happy update since I wrote this post – I stayed up late and got the invitations addressed so thank God that part is done!!***

Just Paint – A Riches of His Love Parenting Series…Advice from the WORST mom ever!

Parenting Series

I hadn’t even been home from work for 5 minutes and I was ready to go back.

Yes it was Friday night and I should have been excited about the upcoming weekend, but the reality was that I walked into kids fighting and I could feel my blood pressure rise immediately.

What is it about fighting, screaming kids that can push you over the edge?!

The past two days had been especially bad. Elijah spent the early part of the week away at a fun camp with his grandparents and cousin Isabel. Apparently he cried every night for us but once he came home, the “missing mom feelings” wore off and his temper and sass were back in full force.

I tried some calm and positive correction.

His response?

“I don’t like your attitude mom”

Excuse me?!

Anything I or his brother Gabriel said to him he repeated in a taunting voice. He was testing the waters big time!

Then he told me that he couldn’t stop being naughty because they devil was making him do it and because the devil was making him misbehave it wasn’t really his fault. (Seriously?!)

I could feel myself getting more and more angry and it was work to keep my voice from yelling back at him.

And then I decided to ask him what he wanted to do. What was it that would help him to behave?

“Paint, I want to paint.”

He has asked to paint before and usually I find a reason not to bring out the paints. It always seems like such a hassle.

But for some reason this night I thought it was worth a try. No he hadn’t “deserved” the right to do something he really wanted to do. He had been nothing but naughty for almost 2 hours straight, but I was desperate for a change…so I said yes.

Just Paint

We got out the watercolors and a few sheets of paper, a cup of water and he was ready to go.

He painted for maybe 10 minutes. 10 blissful, sass-free minutes and it was wonderful. 

Within a half hour he was right back to burping at his brother and chasing his sister. Short-lived peace, yes, but I learned a good lesson.

Sometimes we have to be willing to try something new. We need to say yes to things like painting if it means we will be able to regain some of our sanity, even if just for a few minutes.

What have you said yes to, in order to get some peace from your kids?! I’d love for you to share your stories in the comments below!!

Five Minute Friday – Grateful

Elijah 2

Welcome to Five Minute Friday with Lisa-Jo! The day that writers gather in this online space to write for 5 minutes, no edits, with a single word prompt!

Today’s prompt: GRATEFUL

Oh this little man of mine, how can he be almost 5 already?! On the 18th we will celebrate his birthday, another year, and today I remember the miracle that he really is and I am grateful!

Dominic and I struggled to get pregnant with both Gabriel and Elijah. I was tired of the negative pregnancy tests, tired of the no’s and just wanted something to “fix” what was wrong with me.

We went to see our doctor after over a year of trying and got the same news that we had with Gabriel, for various reasons the likelihood of us getting pregnant on our own was very very small.

There were a couple of things that we thought we would try though and scheduled a “routine” and minor surgery to have some endometriosis removed and to check out the condition of everything inside of me.

It is standard that they run a pregnancy test before the surgery, just to make sure and like every month prior, it was negative. I was holding onto the littlest hope that I had that this procedure might just do the trick.

The surgery went well and I went home to recover. I had the normal after-symptoms from a procedure like that and felt confident that in the next few months we could start trying again…

And then several weeks later I got heartburn.

One thing I have learned about myself is that I don’t ever get heartburn, except when I am pregnant. I was out in Colorado visiting Karlena and we had to stop at a Walgreens to buy some tums…she knew something was up but I was in denial – it was impossible.

But through God all things are possible and boy did He show off with this one! 🙂

I went home and took a pregnancy test and sure enough I saw the 2 pinks lines. I figured I must be like 2 weeks along based on when I had the surgery but I called my doctor and she had me come in for an ultrasound.

When the technician came in she started the scan and then said “Congratulations, here’s your baby and you are 6 1/2 weeks along!” 

I started crying, it didn’t make sense…that would mean that I would have been pregnant during my surgery. It wasn’t possible! I had taken a pregnancy test…they wouldn’t have done the surgery had they known I was pregnant because the likelihood of loosing the egg would have been too great.

But God…oh how grateful I am that He is bigger than any “likelihood” in my life!

The doctor believed that the egg must have implanted on the day of the surgery, my HCG levels would not have started to really increase yet, thus the negative pregnancy test…and somehow even with all they did inside of me, my Elijah hung on and now we celebrate another year with him in our family.

Life is a gift. Being a mother is hard, and my Elijah tests my patience on many days but he is a sweetheart and a gift and I won’t ever stop being grateful for the blessing that he is in our family.

Happy Birthday a few days early my son, I am so grateful for you.

**Disclaimer…this post took me an extra minute or two to finish, but I figured my Elijah was worth breaking the rules for this once** 😉

5-minute-friday-1

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