Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Kids these days...

Today is one of those days, where I question what is the world coming to and how am I supposed to do my part to make sure my kids don't get lost along the way. It started with grading exams. I am constantly amazed at the lack of effort conveyed by many people as far as their school work goes. As a college teacher, I'm hit in the face every semester with students who don't understand that it's not an acceptable excuse to "not be good at math". I won't get on my soap box about the comment in of itself being ridiculous. But somehow college age students going in to nursing programs and pre-med programs still have the idea that by using this excuse, I'm somehow going to take pity on them and just let them slide by. NO! If you can't pass a basic statistics class, I don't want you hooking up IV's full of who knows what to any body, I don't want you to be telling someone how many grams, (Oops! Should have been Milli-grams) of drugs to take. It's not safe.

Believe me, I have a heart for those who try. I know those people who are going to the tutoring lab and coming by during office hours to get help. These people will survive my class. It's the people who still think things should be handed to them on a plate. Just a note if a teacher is nice enough to give you a review day, DO NOT come in and ask "What's going to be on the exam?" and expect any answer other than something like "The materials covered in Chapters 1-6." Every semester, I go through the same thing. I somehow forget that these students aren't like me. They aren't sitting in their seats intimidated by the teacher in the front of the classroom. They aren't paralyzed by the idea of getting a B on an exam. And they aren't keeping tabs on homework assignments making sure not to miss a single one. I mean, can you imagine just not turning in a homework assignment? Incomprehensible. Maybe they've had teachers in the past that actually told them what was going to be on the exam.

So in addition to this little trip of craziness while grading (by the way, I stopped half-way through to let my anger subside before I continue), I was listening to KLOVE. I like the nice music in the background. So the DJ starts talking about how his daughter is hoping to stay on green so that she gets pancakes the following morning. Then he posed the question of how do you get your kids motivated to stay on green. (For those of you without young children around you in elementary school, apparently the newest system of getting your name on the board, like it was when I was in school, includes a green light which gets taken away for misbehavior, so that you then have a yellow light, more misbehavior gets a red light.) Then I started wondering, since when did kids need extra motivation to stay on green. Again, shouldn't the fear of getting to yellow be enough?! I know that I never wanted to get my name on the board, and didn't want my parents to hear about it even more.

So what has happened? And before those of you with small children get defensive about the tactics you use to get your kids to behave, I just want to clarify that I'm looking for answers. I want to raise Chaselyn to be the kid that stays on green because that's what's expected. Not the kid that is usually on yellow and feels entitled to some treat for being on green. I want to know how our parents seemed to have raised us with a respectable fear that now seems lacking. My mom always jokes that it was that she and my dad actually spanked me and so I was afraid. But I wasn't afraid of getting my butt whooped if I didn't make good grades. Spanking was for misbehavior, and really bad misbehavior from what I remember. Not a daily occurrence, just something to really make me think when things did not go as they should have. I think academically, most of my motivation came from trying to live up to my brothers. But why did they do well? And I know other families who didn't spank, and they raised smart, respectable kiddos too. So what are kids today missing? Is it too much self-esteem and not enough hard lessons of disappointment? Is it too many parents trying to be the cool parents and sacrificing discipline? Is it too many toys and overstimulation?

I need answers people! Chaselyn is growing too fast for me to wait to much longer to figure this stuff out. She already just laughs at my serious face when she's grabbing something she shouldn't.

Monday, September 21, 2009

T minus 2 months - updated

Yeah, so I'm a little late. But to be fair, I told you I would be and hopefully my pictures were enough to hold you over for the full report. So Chaselyn is over 10 months old now and has recently added a few notables to her precious moments/ achievements list.

First the run down. She still weighs about 21 pounds and eats her weight in food on a daily basis. Well, at least it seems that way. She has completely shunned baby food. I can still get her to take some baby fruits, but it's usually not worth the mess since she just wants to grab the spoon. She eats the school meals now. They are sometimes modified for the little munchkins, but it's really big girl food. Will eat almost anything, but definitely has a hierarchy of favorite foods. She will pick out her favorite from the food offered to her, and then go to the next food. If there is any kind of fruit available it's going first, followed by pasta, then meats, then veggies. Holly loves that Chaselyn is feeding herself. She's a good clean up dog. Chaselyn sleeps pretty regularly from 7:30-5. She's had some ear infection issues, so I'm hoping once those are all cleared up, she'll go back to the 7:30 - 7.

Now for the good stuff. People, my baby can stand!!! Two weeks ago, it was for a couple seconds if she was distracted by tv or something. Now it's more like 5 seconds when she wants to. She's also taken her first steps. I think if she could control herself, she would be gone. But she gets so excited about the possibility of walking, her little chubby legs can't keep up with her cute belly taking the lead. She falls and laughs and laughs. It's too precious! She's becoming much more deliberate about her playtime as well. She can focus in on one toy and really study it and play with it and figure out how she can get the most fun out of it. Of course after she's done exploring a toy, she still tends to default to gnawing on the nearest remote or wiimote.

She did get to move up to the Babies II class. She made a trip home to Arkansas over Labor day weekend and attended her 3rd wedding. Her second cousin Christina was a beautiful bride. The ceremony was precious, Chaselyn mainly ate cheerios through it to stay quiet. The reception was pretty great too. I wish I had pictures, but all the pictures are on my dad's camera back in AR. She also took her first open tub bath while in AR. And she added her first football game this past weekend, but technically that's part of next months recap, but I couldn't wait to post the picture at the top. It will probably make an appearance next month too.

So to sum it all up, 21 lbs., first steps, and a happy baby! What more could a mommy want?!

Oh, I forgot to mention a couple of adorable things our sweet baby does. She loves to be pushed around on her little Pooh Bear Airplane. It wears Mommy and Daddy out, but the smiles and laughter are well worth it. Also, when we play the music on her See & Say ( you know... pull the handle, "The cow says MOO!") she does a little dance. If she's sitting, she kind of bounces her upper body. If she's standing, she'll bend her legs a little. We've yet to catch her doing it on video, but it's precious.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

10 month picture page

I'll post a narrative later about Chaselyn's 10 month old developments, but for now, here's some pictures from the past month. The ones in the green dress with flowers are from her first day in the Babies II class. When they start crawling around, they get moved up.

Mommy and Daddy each take a photo-op before we leave.

Her new big girl carseat, happy because she's playing with Daddy's keys.

On the Bye-Bye buggy ready to be picked up.

Having fun with Mommy!

College football back in season! Wooooooo Pig Sooiee!!!

Playing around.

Taken this morning before school, she wasn't really wanting a photo shoot, she mainly wanted to eat the camera.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Crying over milk

Today I cried in the parking lot of Chaselyn's daycare. And as I type, I'm tearing up more. Why? Because this morning I had only one bottle of Mommy milk to leave with Chaselyn at daycare. So I dropped her off and I was feeling fine, but I had to make a trip to the store to buy some formula to take back to her. As I walked into the store, I fought back tears and kept myself composed. I walked to the baby aisle, where I found no less than 15 different kinds of formula. Some were way expensive (more than $27 per can), some were specially formulated for lactose intolerant, some were organic, some were soy, some had special additives, and some were just plain. As I stood and scanned the options, I remembered once again why breast-feeding had been the choice for me. I finally decided on the store brand (HEB) with added DHA and ARA which are apparently the lipids that help make breastmilk so healthy.

Anyway, I got back in the truck and headed to the daycare. I was still doing fine, reminding myself over and over again that I was lucky to be able to rely solely on breastmilk for so long. Some people can't even do it in the beginning. And I'm not giving up on breastfeeding, I'm just having to supplement with formula. I went in and gave them the can and the daycare worker said thanks, and said Chaselyn would be fine. I wasn't so sure seeing as how she was crying in the floor. But she was hungry, and they were waiting to see if I was coming back with the formula soon enough so that they could give her the breastmilk bottle before her nap to help her sleep better. And as the lady walked away to help some kids and I walked to the door to leave, I started to lose it. I hurried to my truck and let it all go. I cried a cry that I haven't in a long time. I was heaving and sobbing. I'm sure being tired and all that didn't help much either. But I had a good cry and after I got it all out I felt a lot better.

Now, I'm focusing in on what I'm supposed to be learning from this. It's really not the end of the world. I know that I did everything I could to get more milk, it just wasn't there. I'm not a failure. I know that God is in control and I know that He has a reason. I know that everytime I make a plan, it seems to blow up in my face and something better than I could have imagined comes out of it. I know that Chaselyn will continue to grow and be healthy. So now, I'm not fighting the tears. I'm trusting that there is a reason and a silver lining. And I'm praising God for the nearly 10 months that I was able to satisfy my baby without having to outsource.