Saturday, June 27, 2015

Happy Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to the love of my life, Brian!  We were supposed to have baseball all day today, but knowing in advance we were due heavy rains I made plans.  When we got the cancellation for baseball this morning we turned off the alarm and slept in....til almost noon!  My younger daughter came in wondering if we were all dead or something because I especially am never asleep that late!  Wow, it felt great!  We had coffee, relaxed then my son went to pick up a 1/2 bushel of crabs as my birthday treat to my husband.  We are going to eat them and relax some more and then he is going to get him mom for a simple, but favorite spaghetti dinner and maybe a family movie.  It doesn't take a big party or a lot of people to make a day special and I hope this simplicity and being around some of his family (the girls had to work today) will make it a terrific day.  I love you!

Friday, June 26, 2015

It's Not Easy Being Me

I had a rough evening and an even rougher day because I didn't get much sleep last night.  My heart was hurt, which happens to me more often than to most.  I know that turning 50 in a few weeks is a milestone and in lots of ways I have been preparing in good ways for the "second half of my life".  I am less critical of some things and more critical of others.  I cry rarely these days, but hurt more.  I want more than anything to feel appreciated and yet I feel like the men in my life only notice my existence when they want something I have not provided.  I have a 22 year old son living at home who used to think I walked on air and did no wrong.  Now that he has a Ms. Right in his heart, however, and she is at home in another state for summer break from college, he is extremely moody and often lashes out at me.....something he never did in his 21 years prior.  He is all wrapped up in his future and I am just along to watch.  I am criticized if I don't have the answers to all his dilemmas, but my advice is scorned more often than not these days because I just don't seem to understand him anymore, he says.  Okay.  He has earned this love.  I try to not to feel wounded as he gave me 21 years of "worship" lol.  I will survive this heartache because he has been such a doting son.

Then there is the 10 year old.  He can be harsh!  Where son #1 always thought I did no wrong, son #2 thinks I do no right.  He is often rude and disrespectful and then lashes out when he is corrected. Dad is most often on his side and together they whisper about how I am the villain.   Very soon I believe he won't like me much at all and while that breaks my heart I signed on the dotted line at his birth to be a parent first and a friend second.  I just hope he doesn't completely break my heart in the process of growing up.

Then there is my husband.  THE man in my life.  But he has hit his stride in life and there is little room for me.  He wants me here and wants what I provide as the one who runs the home and raises the kids and the supporter of his efforts, but he doesn't want to be bothered with me in the sense that he doesn't have the time nor desire to entertain my wishes for walks in the park, a dinner just us two, conversation that isn't interrupted by kids, something that I like that he may not.  He wants me to be independent because he is.  He doesn't want me to put any restrictions or guidelines down because he is his own man.  When I tell him it's part of the package after being married for 25 years he is not interested.  He has his goals in line, his dreams within reach and I am a hinderance to all that.   He is a good provider and a wonderful father.  He is the love of my life.  But time, which I crave so very much, isn't something he has to give right now.  I am trying to be brave and pull up my big girl panties and champion his efforts as one day I would want him to champion mine.

Now when I read this back it seems I am either pitying myself or I have crappy men in my life.  They are not.  They are the loves of my life.  I adore them.  I live for them.  Saying they want to be independent is not really true.  They are very dependent on me to be and do and find and wash and whatever it is they need.  My husband says to go and do whatever it is I want to do......but how can I when they all would be blindsided if I stopped doing what it is I do as their mother and wife.  They say this is nonsense.  Those that look from the outside in know differently.   My men are spoiled.  What??  No dinner?   What??  My uniform isn't washed??  What??  You have plans and can't get me there??  What??    I guess every mother and wife go through this.  Maybe not.  Most women I see are the nurturers, but they are nurtured as well.  I only dream of being nurtured.  I feel like a chicken freshly plucked from life's demands and when I voice this I am told to stop and do what I want.  Oh, but the uproar when I do!!    Work and making money is necessary.  How I work is not anyone's cup of tea.  Do more of this, but less of that and when I do then I need to do more of that and less of this.  Take things off you plate, but make sure it's not this or this or this or this or......

I never understood women who "ran away" from their families and it is something I would never, ever do, but sometimes I sort of understand.  How do you come to terms with the demands from family and work and deal with the needs that you have for yourself?   I wish sometimes someone would call my name and when I answer say what do YOU want to do tonight?  What would YOU like for dinner?  Is there something YOU need done by tomorrow to make your day easier?   Come here, they would say, and just take a hug.  Let me give you some affection to get you through a tough afternoon.  But when I have a tough afternoon or I get grouchy because I have too much on my plate I get long looks and quiet grumbles about whey did I choose to do such and such if it was going to make me grouchy for those I need to be here for.

So today I will battle my demons.  I will chase away the blues.  I will conquer the weariness and the aching heart.  I will be here for the men in my life and for my daughters and for my three granddaughters.  And I will ask for them to please remember that sometimes momma/Cindy needs someone to be there for her too.  But they will never know.  They don't read my blog...     :/

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I Have A New Blog

If you have a toddler or preschooler and are interested in a website with more comprehensive ideas about the themes I do with them including book lists, websites and songs, please visit      I enjoy working with preK aged children and since my daycare baby is three and my oldest granddaughter just turned four there is plenty of fun to be had.  If you visit, leave a comment and let me know how you like the new blog and what you might like to see there in the future!!

Two Kinds of Fun

I have 2 preschoolers today, 1 toddler and 4 "big kids" ages 10, 10, 12 and 7.  The big kids have been allowed to hang out in Dakota's room this morning playing video games until 10.  It's gorgeous outside just now so they are outside jumping on the trampoline and I am ready to give them a Nature Scavenger Hunt from   My son, of course, had to pout and run his mouth, but he's going to live through it.  He looks back on his summers so fondly, but at almost 11 getting him to act like he enjoys things is a challenge.

We are still waiting on the other preschooler so right now my 4 year old granddaughter has watched the Sid the Science kid DVD on insects and is not watching Magic School Bus Gets Ants in It's Pants.  Our current theme is Bugs and Butterflies and today's focus is ants.  It's hard when I don't get both preschoolers at the same time because now one has probably slept in and the other is going to be tired soon and we still haven't done out activities for the day.

The big kids completed their scavenger hunt much too quickly and are now at the picnic table teaching each other the "cup dance" where you tap and move a plastic cup to a certain beat. That lasted 10 minutes.  Now back inside they are building with Legos and doing the first Lego Quest, which is building a car.  They are getting along well, but that bedroom is very crowded now that they are so big!  They also watched the new Night at the Museum while they were in there and part of another movie.  I don't even know what, but it was from our home collection.

The littles got up from watching their movie for rest time and we did our fun afternoon activities all about ants.  We did an ants on the log counting activity, putting the correct number of pony beads on brown pipe cleaner logs.  We did a counting ants activity with number recognition, reviewed ant body parts (3 body parts, 6 legs, 2 antenna and no teeth!).  Colored a picture.  Practiced writing their names, did ant mazes, found letter Aa in a grid of letters then learned the Ants Go Marching Home complete with stomping and patting and read 4 books and THEN went outside and put ants in our bug catchers to watch.   That earned them 2 freezy pops each and they happily played on the deck for the rest of the time before their parents came and I got dinner on for my guys before they left for baseball practice.

I helped my daughter get the girls settled in the new/used van that has so much room for them and the girls have their own DVD player to watch!  Now they won't want to ride with me :(  lol.  It's what made Nana's van special!  Once they were gone I cleaned up the backyard, did some work on the fence so Riley, our shephard/husky doesn't escape too easily, put organic homemade weed killer on all the weeds in the 3 part garden, cleaned up dinner and washed the dishes and now it's 7:40 and I still have the deck to clean, the playroom to clean, the laundry to do, dinner for my oldest son who wanted french toast and  then maybe I can read a little if I'm not asleep.  Long, long day.  Glad tomorrow is an "off" day and my daughter and I will be taking the kids to my best friend's new farm to meet all the animals.  We will still be taking 5 kids, but at least there will be two adults.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Summer Fun Begins

Today we had our first day of summer camp 2015.  Dakota, Lindsey and little Brooke had a waffle bar for breakfast with jellies, blackberries, butter and syrup.  We packed up and headed to the free summer movie which was Mr. Peabody and Sherman.  Not a bad movie at all and the historical references were entertaining and educational.  Afterward my older son met us at Sorrentos for pizza and french fries for lunch and then I took the Dakota and Lindsey to the library near our house where they participated in Tinker Tuesday, making and launching paper rockets while I browsed for books.  They got an hour or so to just hang out inside when we got back to the house, as the 100 degree heat made even swimming unappealing.  Now it's early evening and nasty storms are rolling through.  I am going to work and watch the newest Night At the Museum movie together and have a late dinner.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Summer 2015

This week Dakota and I are "off".  No required math or reading.  No fun work packets.  No field trips.  Just home and doing our things.  For him that means sleeping in, staying up late and more video games than I am comfortable with.  For me that means one less thing to squeeze in the day, but also the chance to get ready for our summer fun days, filled with friends, field trips, movies, library activities, picnic lunches, long weekends away.  I am do not have my grandchildren on Tuesdays and Thursdays so those are the days I know I can do "big kid" things with my son and his friends or go on trips and not have to take more than 1 little one.  We will go almost every Tuesday to the Hollywood theater in Arbutus to see the free movie there and then have lunch out or a picnic, depending on the heat and then I will either take the kids to the Arbutus library or the Lansdowne library where they have daily activities for kids their age.  My "tweens" have outgrown the Michael's art classes and while I am sad because I enjoyed the chance to shop while they had art, my wallet will appreciate it!  We will have weekly packets and weekly themes, the first being poetry.  Shel Silverstein books will play a roll as well as writing some fun ones together.  I am always proud of my summers.  The kids that come to my house look forward to the planned fun and I enjoy their company for several weeks, knowing they are getting older and my summers with this particular group are reaching an end.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

As Spring Turns Into Summer

       As spring turns into the summer of 2015 I am pleased with our fun activities so far.  It is weighing a bit heavy on my heart that my youngest is 10 years old, soon to be 11.  Only 4 more years to homeschool him.  Only 5 1/2 more years til he can drive.  I want to make the most of these years and give him memories to last a lifetime.  Some things we do just him and I, some with him and his dad, some include his older brother (22) and some include his sisters.  Quite a few include his little nieces, ages 4, 20 months and 3 months currently!
        So we started off with a big bang going to Disney World in April.  The two boys and I drove down, stopping in North Carolina on the way to spend some time with my sister in law.  We spent April 19th through 26th in Disney and then came home by way of Boiling Springs, South Carolina, where we spent the night with my sister and brother in law.
        Once home our travel baseball games kicked in and we've had lots of games at new places and dinners afterwards with great food.  We have been to Skyzone for Koda's buddy Tyler's birthday.  We've been to a couple of Oriole games, including a great night game with fireworks after and WJZ Weather Day at Camden Yards, including a soggy game after that.  We had a great homeschool picnic where we hooked up with many homeschool friends at Lake Waterford park and we went to Six Flags last Tuesday for Natalie's 4th birthday, taking along a friend for Dakota.  The weather was wonderful, the park was practically empty and we had a fantastic day. We went on a Park Quest to Wye Island on the Eastern Shore and dinner at Harris's Seafood that evening and of course, we have already had our first few bonfires of the season.

  All that in May!!
         June has started very cool and very damp, gray and rainy.  We can't get in any outdoor activities because of the weather, but we were blessed with a visit from my niece Stacey from Missouri and her husband and daughters.  We have not seen the girls since we visited them when Dakota was 4!!  We got to see them for a couple of hours yesterday and are hoping for a couple more hours tomorrow.  We have plans galore for the month including movies, daycamp, Park Quests, the Science Center, Mount Vernon a tournament in Charles County and I am sure lots more!