Tuesday, September 27, 2011

bedtime prayers

bry and i are trying to teach asher to fall asleep on his own. since he moved to a big boy bed about a year ago (has it been that long already?!?!), he's needed one of us sitting in the rocking chair in his room until he falls asleep. for the past week, we've been laying him down, giving him a pillow to snuggle, showering him with hugs and kisses, and leaving him in his room to fall asleep. thus far there has been minimal tears and all has gone much better than i expected...until tonight.

bry puts asher to bed and a few minutes later we hear,

asher: MAAAAAAMMMMMMAAAAA! I WANNA HOLD YOU!
me: ut oh.
asher: MAMA! COME BACK HERE! DADDY!! COME BACK TO ME!
*i go into asher's bedroom
me: it's time for bed, bud. give me a big ol' hug and kiss and then you have to go to sleep.
asher: but i wanna hold you.
me: i'm sorry, asher, but you have to sleep.
*i give him a hug and a kiss
me: love you so much! good night!
*i leave the room

asher begins to cry, screech, and plea. he tries to sneak into the living room multiple times only to be returned to his bed. finally he wails,
asher: BUT I WANT TO PRWAAAAY!
me: oh, we did forget to pray with him, bry.
bryan: ok, let's go pray real quick.
*we walk into his room
asher: MAMA! DADDY! I WANT TO PRWAY!!!
me: ok, we're going to pray with you, bud, but then you have to go to sleep.
bryan: yep. you have to go to sleep so that you can go to school tomorrow and play with your friends!
*bryan prays and we tell asher goodnight one last time. he begins to cry again when we leave,
asher: BUT I WANT TO PRWWWWWWWAAAAYYYY!
*he's silent for a few seconds, then we hear the sweetest thing,
asher: but i want to prway...fank you, God for...in Jesus name i prway...fank you, God for asher, and mama, and daddy, and baby. i wike to go in da wiving rwoom wif mama and daddy, but i jus gotta stay here and rwest so i can go pway at school tomorrow. der's trwucks to pway wif at school and a pwaygrwound, but i gotta sit in da finking chair if i rwun in da rwoom. i wike to kiss my baby brudder, baby nate. and so...i gotta stay in my bed. mama and daddy say i can't get outta my bed again...

and on and on until he finally fell asleep. that sweet boy literally prayed himself to sleep. it was the most adorable, heart-melting thing ever.

Monday, September 26, 2011

discipline

me: ok, asher, i need you to go potty and then it's time to take a nap.
asher: NO!!!!
*he swings his toy mack truck and hits me in the head. he didn't mean to hit me, he was just swinging his truck in defiance and i was sitting closer than he realized. whether he meant to or not, it was not ok.
me: asher john!
asher: nooooooo!
*he starts crying because he knows what's coming
me: you cannot hit when you don't get your way. i have to spank you now. do you know why you're getting a spank?
*through tears and with the saddest voice in the world he says,
asher: yes, because i hit mommy.
me: yes, that's right. i cannot allow you to hit others. do you know why? because you're mine and i love you too much. i need you to learn to love others.
*he gets a hard spank and then i hold him while he cries
me: asher, i love you. can you kiss my head where you hit and make it better?
asher: yes.
*he kisses my forehead with a slobbery, wet kiss.
me: thank you, sweet boy. that's loving. i forgive you for hitting.
asher: you're welcome.
me: ok, let's go potty and get ready for nap.
asher: but i want to pway.
me: you can play when you wake up. now it's time to rest.
asher: BUT I WANT TO PWAY!
me: i understand you want to play, but we all need to rest sometimes. it's your turn to rest now. if you can't obey, then i'm going to have to spank again and i don't want to do that.
asher: ok...
*he goes to the potty and then i tuck him in the bed for his nap
me: sleep tight, bud. i love you so much. i am so glad you're mine. you're my favorite big boy.
asher: wove you, mom.
*as i turn to leave, asher sits up and says,
asher: and i will never hit ofers again, mom.
me: hey, dude, i love you no matter what, but i'm glad you're going to try not to hit others anymore.

i know that asher will hit again. he won't love others the way he should. his anger will get the best of him and he'll hit, or kick, or shove, or yell. if bryan and/or i am around, he will always be disciplined for those actions.
because God has given him to us to raise well.
because we love him too much to let him be a brat.
because loving others is second only to loving God.

let me just do a mini-confession here real quick:
the #1 rule of disciplinary spanking is don't do it when you're angry. getting hit in the head with a toy truck made me angry. it hurt and i was mad at asher for doing it. between me yelling, "asher john!" and him crying, "nooooo!" i had to take deep breaths and count a few numbers slowly. however, as soon as i saw asher's tears and realized he knew he had messed up, the Lord melted my anger and pride. thankfully, the Lord has been teaching me a lot about discipline and parenting lately. He's been teaching me how my son and i share the same curse of sin. He's been imploring me to show my son the same grace and mercy and love and discipline that He shows me when i am defiant in my own sin.

praise the Lord that He disciplines His children well because we are His and He loves us too much to let us stay the way we are.

confession # 10: i got baptized

once upon a time, i was 11 years old. i prayed the sinner's prayer, then i got baptized.

ok, so let's be honest. it was more like the i-don't-wanna-go-to-hell-so-this-prayer-will-be-my-fire-insurance-but-it-probably-won't-change-my-life-in-any-other-significant-way prayer. it didn't really mean much to me. 

i was under the impression that since i had prayed that certain prayer that it made me a Christian. like magic. repeat this prayer and abra-ca-dabra, you're saved and you can go on living however you choose and doing whatever you want and God will answer all of your prayers for cute boyfriends and big boobs and popularity. 

except not really. just because i repeated those words did not mean that i knew Christ as my Lord and Savior. if i had truly known Him, then my life would have been way more about Him and way less about me. it was certainly all about me.

as i entered into high school, my need to have me at the center of the world took precedence.

i was insecure.

i was needy.

and i wanted to be cool, dang it.

so i did a lot of things that did not make me happy. i said a lot of things that were inappropriate. i was a lot of things that were gross. i craved acceptance.

that's what happens when i let me become the center of the universe. miserable dysfunction. you see, people aren't made to work that way. we're made to orient our lives around Christ. through Him and by Him and in Him and for Him all things are. He's the center of the universe. He literally holds the world, including us, together. so, without Him, i was not a properly functioning person. and i knew it. i could feel it. like i was drowning in the expectations of others. suffocating under the weight of trying to fit in.

thankfully, towards the end of high school, the Lord placed some inspiring Christians in my life. ones who were intentional and sincere. ones whose faith genuinely changed the way they lived. ones who challenged me to see if the way i lived my life matched what i said i believed.

it did not. God used 1st John 1:5-10 to open my eyes:

5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
 8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.

this passage described me. i had been claiming Christ while living in darkness.

and, oh, i was so weary of that darkness.

the Holy Spirit used 1st John to literally send me to my knees. there, broken on the floor,
i confessed my sin of living for myself,
i repented of my filthy ways,
i submitted to Christ.

as cliche and silly as it may sound to those of you who have not experienced this, after finally deciding that i needed Christ and without Him i was not whole, i felt the burden of the world lifted.

like being pulled up out of mirky, freezing, immobilizing waters and taking that first breath.

finally, i was me and that was ok. i was free in Christ to be exactly who he had made me. and He knew me. and He still chose to love me. i knew that God loved me with all of His heart. and i was lovely because HE loved me. not because i wore the right clothes, or said the funniest things, or had the perfect figure.

i was me and i was lovely. always and only because HE loves me.

since this true conversion experience, which happened years ago, i had not been baptized...

until yesterday.

wanting to be faithful and obedient to what Christ has called His followers to do, i was baptized in a lake with 6 others from North Wake Church.

and what a blessing it was.

so, all that to say, i got baptized, y'all. just wanted to let you know.

AND i wanted to sincerely apologize to any and everyone who may have been led astray by me claiming Christ while still walking in darkness. i pray for you. really, i do. you may not think i remember you, but i probably do (i'm pretty adept at facebook stalking.)
i pray that you may know the freedom and security that only Christ brings.
i pray that you may know what it feels like to breathe in Him for the first time.
i pray that you may know the joy of being who He created you to be.
i pray that you learn that you are lovely because HE loves you.

always and only because Christ loves you.

brothers

me: asher! don't pick up your brother, please.
*asher shrugs his shoulders and says,
asher: i jus saying, mom. 
me: well, you can't pick him up he's too heavy. 
asher: i know. i jus saying.

asher tries to justify any action by jus saying. 

_________________________________________________________

asher has a cute little laptop that helps children learn animal sounds, numbers, and shapes. he's really too big for it now, so i let nate play with it. 
nate: *banging on the laptop buttons
asher: umm, nate? i needa check my e-mail. 
*he takes the computer from nate. 
me: asher, your brother was playing with that. 
asher: i needa check my e-mail, mom. i jus saying.
nate: *crawls on top of his brother and tries to get to the laptop
asher: mom! wook at brudder! he's crwawling ober me!
me: i see! he wants to know why you took his laptop away!
asher: cuz i just needa check my e-mail, nate!

___________________________________________________

nate likes to chew on the charger cord for our macbook. he gets in trouble every time he does it. we've started having to slap his little hands when he grabs it because we're afraid he could get electrocuted. even with the hand slaps, the rubbery cord texture is just too chewable for a teething tot to resist.
me: nate! drop it! NO! NO!
asher: naaaaate! NO!
nate: *looks at us and smiles
me: nate, you cannot play with that chord. 
asher: yeah, nate. do you fink dat's a good idea? i don't fink dat's a good idea. 
nate: *tries to put the cord in his mouth
asher: MOM! GET HIM! 
me: NO! NO! 
*i slap nate's hand
asher: yeah, nate. no! you can't haf dat cord!
me: asher, i appreciate you trying to be a good big brother and looking out for nate, but you need to let mommy handle this. 
asher: ok, mom...but nate can't haf dat cord...not a good idea, nate. 

asher has been questioned many a time about whether or not he thought his actions were good ideas. it's so kind of him to impart his wisdom to his brother, don't you think? poor nate isn't going to be able to get away with anything fun with brother around. 

Monday, September 19, 2011

dream

me: hey, bud. did you have a good nap?
asher: yeah. der was a mouse.
me: a mouse?
asher: yeah. papa had a mouse.
me: papa had a mouse? was he scaring you with a mouse?
asher: yeah. he was just saying, "eeeeerrrrr!" (growly noise)
bryan: i think you were having a dream, bud.
asher: no, it was a mouse. i was going wif gangee to see papa.
me: you and gangee were going to see papa?
asher: yeah, and papa was a mouse! he put on his gwasses and said, "eeeerrrr!" and den he put on his hat and said, "eeerrrrrr!"
me: so, papa turned into a mouse? that sounds pretty creepy.
asher: yeah. it was pwetty cweepy.
me: you know, that didn't really happen. papa isn't really a mouse. that was just a dream. it was just pretend in your mind.
asher: yeah, papa not weally a mouse. it was pwetty twicky.

daaaaang, papa. will you quit scaring my kid while he's trying to sleep?!

on a side note, asher uses the adjective "tricky" a lot. i'm not sure where he learned it, but it's one of my favorite things that he says.

having a dream about papa turning into a mouse and eeeeerrrring at you is pretty tricky, indeed.

bucks

bryan: tot! you've got teeth coming in!
me: where at? on the bottom?
bryan: nope. on the top. his two front ones are about to break through!
me: let me see!
*i push his little lip up
me: just like asher! i can't believe that.
bryan: yep. you're getting your buck teeth, nate.

usually, the two middle teeth on the bottom come in first for babies. i thought it amusing and adorable when asher's top two teeth came in first. now, nate's top two are about to pop through. apparently, baby bucky teeth run in the family.

a boy and his balloon

i took asher and nate on a trip to harris teeter this morning. as soon as we walked in the door asher asked:


asher: mom? can i have a bawoon?!
me: umm, we'll see when we're all done shopping.
asher: yeah! when we're all done!


can i just say that i hate flimsy, easily popped, then once popped easily inhaled, then once inhaled easily stuck in a toddler or baby's throat, then once stuck easily suffocating balloons? why do grocery stores think it's a good idea to give them to tiny children? needless to say, i was hoping he would just forget about it, but as we were checking out...

nice, good intending grocery store lady: would you like a balloon, sweetie?
asher: YES! A BAWOOOOOOOON!
NGIGSL: ok! what color?
asher: BWUUUUUUE!
NGIGSL: ok! you wait right here with your mama and i'll go get you one!

i thought about making a run for it while she was gone. i especially hate having balloons in the car because if it does pop and get stuck in a throat then i would probably panic and wreck trying to get to my suffocating child. however, my son was so dang excited about that blue balloon that he literally did a balloon dance. so we waited and took that darn balloon with us.

me: how about we let that balloon go out here before we get in the car?! we can watch it fly!
asher: noooooooooo!
me: ok, but i need you to be very careful with it.

thanks a lot, NGIGSL. now i'm probably gonna wreck because my son is going to suffocate on his dang blue balloon. as i'm driving and trying not to glance in the rearview mirror every 5 seconds to keep an eye on the potentially suffocating perpetrator, asher is thoroughly enjoying his time with it.

asher: oh, bawoon. i jus so much wove you!
*he hugs his balloon.
asher: der! a kiss!
*he kisses his balloon
me: you love that balloon, asher?
asher: yes! i wove my bwue bawoon!
*he kisses it again
me: wow, that's a lot of balloon love, but don't put your mouth on it, please.
asher: ok, mom.
me: you have to be gentle with it or it may pop.
asher: yes, we have to be gentle.
me: yep. when we get home you can let it go and watch it fly away! won't that be fun?!
asher: yeah! ok!
*he squeezes the balloon a little too lovingly and POP!
me: ut oh! it popped!
*i literally pull over on the side of the road, grab all the poppings, then piece them together to make sure they're all accounted for. thankfully, there were only 2 pieces.
asher: awwww, but i jus wanna watch my bwue bawoon fwy away!!!!
me: i'm sorry, bud. it's gone now.
asher: awwww...
*he pouts for a few minutes
asher: mom?
me: yes, bud?
asher: i can have a pink bawoon now?!

no, sir. you cannot.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

confession # 9: we all need grace

me: asher! don't go that way! we have to go this way to the car!
asher: i wanna go dis way.
*he turns and starts to walk the opposite way down the sidewalk
me: asher! we're already running late. come back this way!
*he stops, but doesn't follow the rest of us
me: fine! you go that way! me and brother and daddy are getting in the car! you can stay here! BYE!
*he hangs his head
bryan: come on, bud. it's time to get in the car.
*asher makes a pouty lip and looks up at his daddy with tears in his eyes
bryan: what's wrong, asher?
asher: mama jus tell me bye...
bryan: oh, bud, she didn't mean that. she wants you to come with us. she loves you.

i was exhausted. really, i was.


i had a cold. i didn't feel good at all.


oh, AND i had my period. 


you know, it had been a long week. 


and we were running late. 


he should've obeyed the first time and then i wouldn't have gotten so upset. 

these were the excuses that went through my head-all true, mind you-when i saw my sweet son's teary eyes. my first temptation was to justify the frustrated and hurtful remarks i had made to him with those pitiful excuses. thankfully, the Lord crushed my pride and forced me to think through what i had done. i had just threatened to leave my 2 1/2 year old son on the sidewalk because he took a few steps in the wrong direction...and, even worse, he believed that threat. in my prideful frustration and anger, i tried to force my child to obey by threatening his security which is an awful and terrifying thing to do to a child.

ouch. what a jerk. worse than a jerk. what a terrible mama.

so, after we were all in the car and driving,
me: asher, i'm sorry for saying that, bud. of course, i want you to come with us. i love you.
asher: yeah. you want me to come too.
me: yes, i do! i was just frustrated. i should never have said those things. i'm so sorry, bud.

let me just confess that even after acting so awfully, i didn't apologize as quickly as i should have. i tried to justify my behavior for a good few minutes of driving before the Lord really prompted me to apologize to my son. shame on me.

i'm so thankful for the grace of God in parenting. i'm so thankful that He never threatens to leave even when i indulge my own disobedient, sinful heart. in fact, He promises to never leave or forsake us (deut. 31:6).

may i continue to daily depend on the grace of God so that i may learn to daily impart it to my sweet children.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

lessons

asher: da fwiend hit asher at school today.
me: oh, he hit you?
asher: yeah. right here on dis ear.
me: i'm sorry, bud. it hurts when we get hit. do you remember when you had to sit in the thinking chair because you were throwing blocks?
asher: yeah.
me: your teachers made you sit in the thinking chair because they were afraid you might hit someone with those blocks. we can't hit our friends because it hurts. i'm sorry your friend hit you in the ear today.
asher: yeah, but mrs. whitney kiss it for me.
me: aww, how sweet of her!
asher: yeah, and mrs. becky kiss it too.
me: did that make it all better?
asher: yep.

SO thankful for opportunities to teach asher right from wrong. even more thankful for sweet teachers that love and care for my son.

it's baaaaack

in honor of tonight, let me redirect you to this post.


what's that i feel? my inner 15 year old girl squealing with delight?


welcome back, you silly, squealy friend.


i've missed you.

dearest inner-15-year-old-squealy-mcsilly girl,

i hate to do this to you. really, i do. i know how much you love the thrill of unrealistic, supernatural teenage drama, but this needs to be said. are you sitting down? i'm going to try to let you go gently.

i'm done with the aforementioned show. the level of ridiculous content has exceeded my responsible adult viewing capacity. maybe i'm just in a different life place than i was last season, but the questionable, sketchtastic content seems to have escalated to an unreasonable amount. i may have visibly cringed a few times while watching due to how remarkably uncomfortable i felt. i shouldn't feel filthy after watching a tv show.

so, miss mcsilly, label me a prude if you must, but i'm out, sista. call me up in november and you can be my date to a certain vampire wedding, if you like.

sincerely the adult who has to put her foot down this time,
elise


jump

asher: mom? can i jump on da couch?
me: no.
asher: on da wocking chair?
me: nope.
asher: on da bed?
me: no, bud.
asher: on da bwyan's?
me: sure! you can jump all over the bryan's!
asher: yeah! it'll be cool! it'll be gweat!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

awake

asher: umm... mom? i awake.
me: what are you doing out here? you're supposed to be sleeping.
asher: yeah, i all done wif my nap. 
me: it wasn't a nap, bud. you were supposed to be asleep for the night.
asher: yeah, i awake.
me: why are you awake?
asher: cuz i ready to pway.
me: it's not time to play.
asher: yeah...
me: yep.
asher: can i watch some twucks on da puter?
me: nope.
asher: yeah, it's too wate. we're supposa be sweeping.
me: yep.
asher: can i watch da excabators on da puter?
me: nope, no excavators either.
asher: dig, dig, dig, dig, dig, dig my excabatooooor.
me: why are you awaaaaaaaake?
asher: um, mom? can we wun in da house?
me: no, we're gonna get ready to go back to bed.
asher: is it too wate?
me: yes! it is!
asher: can we watch tv?
me: nope.
asher: can we pway?
me: nope.
asher: can we take a nap?
me: yes! please! why don't you go back to bed and take a nap?!
asher: uhhhh, no.

i'm off to put a ridiculous toddler back to bed.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

on this day

thankful on this day for the brave heroes who responded quickly and sacrificed greatly to minimize the loss of life 10 years ago.

more thankful that God is a God of restoration and healing.

most thankful that He loves and forgives sinners like me while they are still filthy in their sin.

may we continue to glorify and honor Christ as we remember September 11, 2001.

Friday, September 9, 2011

pull my leg

asher: mom, i can have some milk?
me:
sure! where's your cup?
asher: umm, i not know. i don't see it anywheres. 
me: well, we have to find it if you want some milk!
asher: der it is!
*he points across the room
me: where? 
asher: ober der!
me: i don't see it. are you pulling my leg?
asher: umm, sure. here ya go, mom.
*he pushes on my leg. 
asher: now i pull your weg. 
me: oh ok, 'preciate it, bud.

now that nate's on the move...

...he's found some new favorite things to eat! bry and i find ourselves saying things like this multiple times a day:

"naaaaate, how did you get your brother's shoe? and why is it in your mouth?"

"tot! we don't eat paper! what happened to mickey mouse's lower half? did you seriously ingest 1/2 of a coloring page?!"

"duuuuude, get those diapers out of your mouth!"

"where did you get that tube of diaper rash cream? that's for your booty, not your mouth!"

"we don't eat remotes, totty."

"where did that crayon come from? you're going to have multi-colored poop!"


oh, and this happened:
bry: i'll change nate's diaper if you want to go run some bath water for him?
me: ok.
*a few minutes later, bry comes to the bathroom
bry: wifey, i got up to go throw tot's diaper away and when i came back he was making his escape, crawling away with his little naked booty in the air.
me: awww...
bry: look out! he's coming this way!
me: ahhhh! nudey tot on the loose!


there's nothing cuter than a crawling, nudey, baby booty!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

preschool

me: asher, did you sing songs with mrs. lisa today?
asher: yes!
me: what kind of songs did you sing?
asher: songs about asher.
me: about asher? well, did you sing a song about a fish?
asher: yes! and we say, "wait a minute! we're fishies!" hahaha!
me: oh, yeah. those silly fishies. what did you do in your class with your friends? with mrs. whitney and mrs. becky?
asher: well, dey jus tell me dat i hafta sit in da finking chair cause i frow bwocks.
me: oh, you had to sit in the thinking chair?
asher: yeah, cause i frow bwocks...and we don't frow bwocks, we build bwocks.
me: well, i'm so thankful they made you sit in the thinking chair. we never throw blocks because we might hurt our friends.
asher: yep, and we don't wanna hurt our fweends.

so thankful that asher has wonderful, guiding teachers at preschool. we are just loving our time at building blocks learning center!

Friday, September 2, 2011

nater tot

nate wanted to say hey...

video
no, seriously, he said, "hey!" like 3 times...

crustache

bryan: yeah, i don't know what made me think flowing hair, big, round glasses, and a crustache was an attractive look in middle school...
me: haha! me either! thinking about crustaches makes me cringe a little. i was ugly and gangly in middle school too though.
bryan: wifey, you know that our boys are going to have crustaches when they hit puberty.
me: noooooooooooooo! can't you counsel them into shaving those nasty things?!
bryan: it's their first sign of manhood and masculinity. you just need to let them be proud of it.
me: ewwwww. i've never met a girl that wasn't grossed out by the crustache look. it does not look manly.
bryan: wifey, you can't tell them that when they have them.
me: ok, well i won't tell them anything, but YOU need to tell them to shave it off until they can grow some serious manly facial hair.
bryan: i'll tell them it will grow back thicker if they keep it shaved. you know though, these are my progeny we're talking about here. they'll probably be blessed with full beards by middle school...

i apologize if you are reading this and are a past or present crustache rocker. i just can't handle my teenage boys being crustacheous. after thinking on how disturbing the thought of my sweet boys growing a tiny little crustache creature on their lips is, i had an idea!

me: bry! i just decided something!
bryan: ok...what?
me: we need to encourage our boys to keep their crustaches! that way, girls will leave them alone until they can grow real facial hair. hopefully, by then they'll be in college and won't have to deal with silly high school girl heart break!
bryan: hmm...i think you just won yourself the award for worst parenting idea ever, wifey.

the one thing i find more disturbing than crustacheous sons is girl-crazy, heartbroken sons.

suddenly, the crustache seems like a beautiful thing.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

public poop

asher: umm, mom? i got somfin' in my butt...
me: ut oh.
*i check his pants
me: yes, yes you do have something in your butt.
bryan: poop?
me: yep.

this conversation took place right as we sat down to eat dinner at chili's. it was gross and i was unprepared, but i survived my first public potty accident with asher.