Friday, June 24, 2011

Carter Gets a Visit from the Tooth Fairy

Carter lost his first baby tooth yesterday. It had been loose for about three weeks and we were wondering which would happen first:  Carter losing his tooth or baby Lauren’s arrival.  Lauren beat out the tooth by 10 days.  I can’t believe how long that tooth held on!

Carter’s tooth came out during snack time at camp. He was so excited when he came home and flashed me his smile.  He had his tooth wrapped up in a napkin and immediately ran upstairs to put it under his pillow.  He couldn’t wait for the Tooth Fairy to visit.


The Tooth Fairy did indeed visit, took the tooth, and left a $10 Target gift card in it’s place! The poor Tooth Fairy.  The price of teeth has far surpassed inflation in the last 30 years.  From what I hear, the first tooth is worth much more than subsequent teeth.

I can’t believe how much older Carter looks now with a gap in this teeth.  My little boy is really growing up.  *sniff sniff*

Monday, June 13, 2011

Lauren Audrey Gale

Lauren Audrey Gale arrived today at 10:55 am, weighing 7lb 2oz, measuring 20 inches.  We are completely smitten with her and are, once again, amazed that we created a person.


Though she is an average sized baby, she seems so tiny compared to Carter when he was born.  Carter was 8 lbs 5oz. That extra pound (plus!) really makes a difference. Lauren is our little bean.

She has a shocking amount of dark, dark brown hair.  It is so silky soft.  Unfortunately she also has some on her ears (like an old man) and on her back.  No halter tops for her this summer!  It will be interesting to see if the hair on her head all falls out like Carter’s did.  Ironically, around the time I was 5 months pregnant, we asked Carter what we should name the baby.  He suggested “Furry.”  Little did we know it would be quite appropriate.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Cat Stevens and Insecurity

I’m sure this post title has you saying, “Huh?”

Yeah, it doesn’t make much sense except that I want to talk about both:  Cat Stevens and insecurity…but not necessarily together.

Today was a perfect Michigan spring day.  It was in the low 60s, the sun was shining, and there was a nice breeze.  I was able to leave work a little early and I drove home with the moon roof open and the radio blaring.  I was singing away and was totally happy.  I don’t even remember what I was singing but was thinking that if Cat Stevens’ “If you want to sing out” came on the radio, it would be the perfect song at that very moment. 

All was right with the world.

For the moment.

A short while later, I was picking Carter up from school.  I ran into the mom of a friend of Carter’s.  We were perusing the books at the Book Fair and I asked if her son could read.  Carter is doing OK with sounding out some words and has a decent grasp of many site words, but he’s not a bonafide reader, yet.  We have other friends whose children are the same age as Carter and they are reading quite well, can write several sentences together.  I had just sort of chalked them up as anomalies…thinking they were just exceptionally bright children or they go to better schools. Well it turns out that Carter’s friend from school can read pretty well, too.  Hmm, definitely can’t blame it on the school, now.

So now I’m feeling all insecure about Carter’s reading and writing levels.  He’s a smart kid.  Just ask my husband or my parents.  They’ll tell you!  But somehow he’s not doing as well as his peers with reading and writing and it really disturbs me. I’m sure that it’s not a matter of his capability, but a matter of effort. My effort…or lack there of.  Now I really just feel like a bad mother for not spending enough time with him practicing.

And then I feel even worse when I think about next year. He’ll be in the first grade and we’ll have a young baby in the house.  It’s not like I’ll have more time to dedicate to Carter and school work next year. 

In less than two hours time, I went from a fabulous, spring-induced high to a new low brought on by parental insecurities.

Quick, find the nearest Walmart.  I need to go be reassured that there are worse mothers than me out there.  

Hey, at least Carter was in bed by 8:30, freshly showered and in clean PJs.  Oh, and he’s never had a sip of soda or chewed gum in his entire, 5 1/2 year life. 

He might be illiterate but at least Child Protective Services can’t take him away from me.

PS - While I’ve been writing this post, Ben has been working in the basement.  Filtering up through the vents are the sounds of wood being cut on the table saw, the air compressor charging up, the power nailer being used, and the occasional giggle of satisfaction coming from Ben.  Not only is he kicking butt down there and making great progress on finishing the basement, he is getting immense enjoyment and fulfillment from the task. 

I’m so incredibly envious.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Taekwondo Tournament

Carter participated in a Taekwondo (TKD) Tournament today at his TKD school.  Honestly, I was very much against him signing up for this.  He’s only been doing TKD for about 3 months.  He’s still the lowest belt level possible (white).  I was thinking that he would be the youngest, smallest, least experienced kid there and it would be a disappointment for him. 

Well, I was right on the youngest, smallest, least experienced part.

Given his level and (in)experience, he could really only participate in the board breaking portion of the tournament.  I was definitely not excited about this because he’s never tried to break a board before.  I was so nervous for him to try this in front of an audience.  To make matters even worse, they started with the least experienced kids and worked their way up through to the black belts.

You can see him in the picture below with one board in front of him and one board behind him.  The goal is for him to punch through the one in front of him and then whip around and punch through the second board in one fluid motion.


Carter didn’t break the first board on his first attempt.  But he totally stuck with it and on his third attempt (and after he calmed down a bit) he punched that thing in half. He quickly turned around and broke the second board into three pieces on his first try!

Sorry for the terrible quality of the photo but I was ridiculously nervous for Carter.  In fact, I only got that one photo because I think I was holding my breath the whole time.

Needless-to-say, Carter was beaming with pride afterwards (as was I).

Carter earned a participation trophy which he was thrilled about until he saw that it was possible to earn bigger trophies.   SAM_0635

PS – No, I was not thrilled that my son was strong enough to punch through a piece of wood, I was thrilled that he had the confidence and focus to do it.  I cannot say enough good things about TKD.  It has taught him confidence, respect, and self discipline and is a fabulous work out for him twice a week.  AND, most of all, he loves it.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

New Bedroom Furniture

With a baby on the way, we needed to get Carter some new bedroom furniture. His furniture is actually part of the nursery set and so we need to move his dresser, nightstand, and bookcase into the baby’s room.

We decided to upgrade Carter to an even bigger “big boy” bed.  He now has a full size (aka, double) bed.  We are planning on this set lasting him for at least the next 13 years…at which point he’ll be sleeping in a crappy, twin-sized dorm bed.



I still need to find that perfect picture or two to hang above his bed.  It’s looking rather bare up there.  Do you remember the mod-podged stars from this post?  They’ll be moved to the area above his bookcase to the left of the bed.  I have a trophy shelf type thing on order that will go were the stars were originally hanging. 

Clearly there’s more work that needs to be done but we are making progress (which is more that I can say about the nursery these days!).