Wednesday, November 24, 2010

First Words

Dear Mr. Smith,

I was wrong.

When I took Isaac for his first speech therapy session, and came home saying it didn't go well.

When I said Miss E. looked like she was 15, that she wasn't going to be able to get through to him, and I wished we had been assigned another therapist.

I was wrong.

When I told you that we should cancel, and start pursuing other options of treatment for him. When I said that he wasn't ready for this, that it wasn't going to work, he wasn't going to make any progress with this method.

I was so wrong.

When he comes to me now, making the sign for "more", and his little lips form the word, and force his sweet, husky voice out, and he holds out his cup, and the word "more" spills out at me in a rush of joyful progress.... I can hardly stand it. And I realize how wrong I was.

Thank God for nudges from the Holy Spirit, prompts that push us past our rushes to judgement.

Thank God for progress and hope, and guidance when we are wrong.

Mrs. Smith

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thank You

Dear Mr. Smith,

I think I'm in love.

From Shoe Heaven,
Mrs. Smith

Friday, November 19, 2010


Dear Mr. Smith,

We have cool kids.
(my, how my definition of cool has changed over the years.)

Right now, they are all at the table playing with play-doh. They're being chefs, talking with Italian accents, and serving up things like spaghetti, bread with olive oil and lemon juice, and coffee with caramel and whipped cream. (where did they ever get that idea?)

None of that is the noteworthy part, though. The thing that I admire about them is how they play together, without a thought or a care of how old (or young) the others are.

There's no talk of things being "babyish", no one making another feel silly because they can't do something as well as someone else. They are serving each other, helping and encouraging one another in their creativity.

It is a testament, I believe, to this life that we lead. And it makes me happy.

Contentedly Yours,
Mrs. Smith

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A How-To Guide

How To Make Haircut Day As Stressful As Possible
(in seven easy steps)

Step #1 -- Choose a Saturday. Everyone else you know is sleeping in, relaxing, or watching college football, you'll question your sanity in taking it on before you even begin.

Step #2 -- Make sure it's a Saturday that your husband is working. Even better if he's clocked 60+ hours for the week, you should be just about at your wits end.

Step #3 -- Start off by announcing what's going to happen to all the children at once. The moans and groans of despair should set the mood quite well.

Step #4 -- Be certain the 2-year-old (who is new to haircuts) is adequately afraid of the hair clippers. Also, give him pretzels for a snack before you begin, to aid in the execution of Step #5.

Step #5 -- Allow 2-year-old to get worked up and crying hard enough that he throws up on you during his haircut. Be sure he then tries to hide his vomit-covered face in your hair-covered pants, let the two mix well.

Step #6 -- Once you have finished cutting the hair of the 2-year-old and the 4-year-old, put them in the bath and begin on the 8-year-old. (For optimum stress, it is best if the 8-year-old has an attitude the size of Manhattan.) Next, make sure the 4-year-old dumps a cupful of water on the floor at your feet, where all the hair clippings are. This will make them nearly impossible to clean up.

Step #7 -- Finally, when everyone is trimmed and presentable, turn away from the mess that is now your bathroom, it'll still be there later. Take and deep breath and admire your work. And remember: Only a few short weeks until you do it all over again.

Friday, November 12, 2010

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, visit SouleMama and leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I'm Just Sayin'

Dear Mr. Smith,

Thank you for sending pictures of the big machines that are your job. I know you intended them for the boys, they think that kind of thing is cool after all, but I spotted you in one of them, and just so you know, you're kinda cute.

There's something about a man in his element.

You Can Stop Blushing Now,
Mrs. Smith

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Glimpse

Dear Mr. Smith,

Earlier today:

Me: Owen, go ahead and do your timed worksheet. You have five minutes to complete these problems. I'll start the timer, and we'll go over the lesson when you're finished. Ready? Go!

5:00, 4:59, 4:58....

Me: (sitting quietly, in my head) What should we have for dinner tonight? Tacos? We have lots of ground beef from when we bought into that cow...are we eating too much beef? I could use turkey...were my tacos good the last time? Can't remember if I used a recipe or just threw stuff together...I need to gather some new recipes, getting a bit bored with the same old.... and we might actually have a decent meal here and there now that the baby will sit in his high chair and let me cook once in a while, he's getting so big...should we put the crib up, or will his bassinet suffice a little longer? It's nice to keep the smaller of the two, it hardly takes up any room, although we actually have space for a crib for once...maybe I'll move that pink chair out of our it too pink for the living room?...I wonder where we'll put the Christmas tree in this new house. It would look nice in front of the big window, but I think it's more practical in the corner opposite the piano...the piano really needs to be tuned, I'll have to look up that number and call the guy...I wonder if painting it is a no-no. I'd really like to paint it -- green, is that too much? Although, if I'm going to paint anything, those shelves need to be painted and put up in the boys room, finally...we really have to get them to keep up on their room, it's a mess! I should get into the habit of sending them in there before dinner every night for a quick tidy, then it wouldn't get so bad....dinner! Tacos?...

3:21, 3:20, 3:19...

Welcome to my world, Honey.
It's like this all the time in here,
Mrs. Smith

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Making History

Dear Mr. Smith,

This letter is to document an historic day in our lives.

A day for the books, a "Remember when...?" day.

This is the day we found out that nerf footballs are, indeed, flammable.

We know this because Isaac threw ours into the fireplace,
and we all watched it burn.

Write it down, and hope that history doesn't repeat itself.

Someday we'll laugh about these things...right?

The House is Still Standing, But Barely,
Mrs. Smith

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Feast of All Saints

Dear Mr. Smith,
We had a wonderful time celebrating the richness of our Faith today, with all our precious saints.
First, we read the story of St. Martha. We learned about how she was a fantastic baker and housekeeper, and very different from her sister Mary. Then we baked bread, in honor of St. Martha. We played "St. Simon Says" and talked about St. Sebastian. Once the bread was done baking, it was time for lunch. We read a poem about St. John Bread and Water, a little-known saint whose sacrifice for the Lord was to forgo all food and drink but bread and water, for his entire life. We ate our bread and drank our water, imagining how difficult that must have been for St. John. (Then we had a healthy dose of Halloween candy and everyone was better.)
We played games, like this one in honor of St. Nicholas:

We took turns trying to toss as many gold coins as we could into the "chimney".
(Thanks for the idea, Charlotte :o)!)
We made roses while learning about St. Therese, and then presented them to Mary, the Queen of all Saints, via a Saint Trivia game.
Can you spot the objects in the beans?
A sword for St. George, a clover for St. Patrick, and a St. Gerard medal, all *lost* in the beans, to be found with the help of St. Anthony.
"St. Anthony, St. Anthony, please come down, something is lost and can't be found!"
We read lots of saint stories, did some printable activities, and had a really great day overall. As you know (since you were here by then), we ended the day with a beautiful Litany of the Saints.
All you Holy Saints, pray for us!
In Christ, Through His Blessed Mother,
Your Wife,
Mrs. Smith