Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Birthday Christian

You want to know what's nerve wracking? It's putting your baby that you still think of as an adorable 3 year old behind the wheel. I can't believe he's already 16. ARRRGH! Christian is so special to me. He's always been so charismatic and talented, and he makes me laugh every day. On top of all of that, Christian is one of the most intuitive people I know. He is smart and observant, and can spot someone's true intentions almost a mile away. That's not to say that he doesn't often wear teenage blinders, but Christian's always been an old soul in a young body.

I tend to be very protective of Christian, because he's tried to leave this world 3 times. Once, when he was a baby, he almost died of hypovolemic shock because his doctor would not properly diagnose him with Pyloric Stenosis. By the time he had surgery, it was almost too late. Next, when he was 3 months old, Christian had an anaphylactic reaction to sulfa and we got to the hospital just in time. At 11 years old he had another anaphylactic reaction in his sleep to an unknown trigger. If he had not shaken the bunk bed and wakened his brother, we might not have known he was suffocating, and he would have died. Along with his allergies, Christian also suffers from asthma so I'm constantly worrying that he will have an asthma exacerbation when I'm not with him. Needless to say I have a very hard time letting Christian go.

Now though I have to be brave. I have to let him go out on his own. It is very scary, and it's even scarier to think of him driving Nicholas around. I don't like to think of both boys riding around in the car together. Heck, I still have a hard time when Alyssa travels with Logan, or when she's home and takes both boys somewhere. I can't sleep until they're all three home. I guess being a mom never gets easier.

Pray for me to have strength and peace, and pray that Christian will have common sense and safe driving habits. Also pray that all of the dumba$& idiot drivers stay away from my babies. I love you Christian.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Every Day is Mother's Day

I know it is a little late, (2 weeks) but in my opinion every day should be Mother's Day. I know so many beautiful, talented, and loving Mothers, and I have so many great friends and family members that I watch in awe with their children. Being a good mother is definitely the hardest job in the world. It is both thankless and infinitely rewarding at the same time. It is not something that you can learn in school; it is something that must come from a place deep within you that is selfless, giving, and darn near martyring (is that a word). For all of those women I know, you are outstanding and all of your children are blessed. That being said, I do want to take a moment and pay tribute to MY mother(s).

My Mom-First I have to say I have a wonderful mother. She has always been there beside me even when I couldn't (or wouldn't) see her. Our relationship hasn't always been easy, and I grew up holding her responsible for a lot of things that I shouldn't have. What I have learned over my life as a mother is that my mom did the very best job she could under the circumstances she was given. Hindsight is 20/20 and I would change so many things that I have done as a mother, but those mistakes have brought me a much better understanding as to where my mom was coming from, and how much she actually sacrificed for me, my brother, and my sister. She is such a giving person and I truly would not have survived without her. No matter how much I've screwed up she is always my biggest advocate. We love you mom.

My Step Mom-Wow that word has some awful connotations doesn't it? Actually I hate that word so much I call her my Dad's wife or Geneva because I love her too much to call her my "STEPMOTHER". Geneva has been with my dad since I was 13. I have had another step-mother before, but she really did fit the evil category. Geneva came along during a very tumultuous time in my life and in mine and my Dad's relationship so she didn't get a very warm welcome. We haven't always seen eye to eye but the older I get the more I notice the similarities between the two of us. Geneva has been very good for my Dad, and he would not be where he is today without her. She has also been a fantastic Grandmother to my 3 kids and a loving Great Grandmother to my Grandson. None of my kids ever knew what a Step Mom was because to them Geneva was just "Maw Maw Neevie". We love you Geneva.

My Mother-in-Law-I don't see my Mother-in-Law very often but she is a real sweetheart. I don't think Eloisa has ever said a bad word to or about anyone. She is the epitome of perfect love and honestly believes that her son is perfect. Not in a bad "blinders on" kind of way, but in an unconditional love kind of way. She loves Al, Walter, and our families very much. I hate that the kids are so far away from her, and that they never get to see her. We love you Eloisa.

My Other Moms-I have a two very special women in my life that I consider my other moms. They are women who have loved me and cared for me unconditionally.

My Aunt Carol is my Dad's sister and I lived with her off and on for several years in Junior High and High School. One of the most devastating losses I ever had was when her husband Uncle Buddy died from Lung Cancer. I really looked to these two as a second set of parents. Now Aunt Carol has severe COPD and is in very poor health. It breaks my heart to see her suffer. We love you Aunt Carol.

My Aunt Lucy is my Mom's sister and we have just recently become much closer. She has always been one of my favorite Aunts but since we've moved to Omaha and are physically closer (2 hours) we see her and her husband Bob much more frequently. She really has become my substitute Mom since my Mom is so far away. She has also played the role of surrogate Grandma to my kids (especially the boys). She and Bob do all the fun Grandparent things that they have missed out on with their real Grandparents. She comes to their plays and concerts and is the proudest Aunt/Grandma in the room. You know the old saying "It's too bad you can't have Grand Kids without having kids." Well, Lucy found a way. Of course she did, she is Lucy after all. We love you Lucy.

New Mom-I guess I saved the best one for last. New mom Alyssa. Alyssa has not had the easiest year. She had so many obstacles to overcome with being a young unmarried mother and having a baby with feeding difficulties, congenital defects, and chronic respiratory and ear infections. Alyssa has really had to grow up fast but she has done a fabulous job with Logan. I wish I had posted this earlier because Alyssa did not have a very good Mother's Day. I think she felt like no one noticed her, but I noticed. I noticed how well she takes care of Logan, how much she loves him, and how much he loves her. He is a very lucky little boy. She dotes on him and never lets him forget how much she cares about him. She is a fantastic mommy. I LOVE YOU SO VERY MUCH ALYSSA!

The first time she met her baby boy.

Consoling Logan after his first casting.
She cried more than he did.

Holding Logan as he wakes up from surgery.

A tiny little thing.

He was with us on Valentine's Day but she didn't forget him.

She's always teaching him new things.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Twice as Nice

Nicholas and his choir director Mr. Thomas Wilde

Nicholas won the "Outstanding Singer" award at his choir concert tonight. Eighth graders are nominated by and voted for by all of the students in choir. The award is for superb singing and excellent leadership skills. 2 students in each 8th grade choir class are given the award, and their names are engraved into a plaque that hangs on the choir room wall. We are so very proud of Nicholas, not only for being a great singer, but also for being a positive example to his peers.

This award is especially heart warming to us because another young man (whom I'm also very proud of) had his name engraved in the same plaque 2 years ago. Who you might ask is this young man? Well it is none other than Nicholas' slightly bigger brother (who casts a much larger shadow) Christian. I am very proud of both boys. You guys are awesome.

Christian and Mr. Wilde in 2007

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What Have I Been Doing With All Of My Time

What is it, you may ask, that you do with all of your free time Mitzi? Well I will respond WHAT FREE TIME WOULD THAT BE????? OK I know it's been over 6 weeks since I've updated the blog, and some of you (aka my father) have let me know it. So what is it I've been up to? Well...

Awards Ceremonies-Christian and Nicholas have really been excelling at school. Christian lettered in vocal music, and honor lettered in drama. He also received the awards for "Best supporting actor in a one act" and "Best supporting actor overall" as well as "Captain of the improv team" and was handed down a parody song that he has to write about drama for the next two years. Nicholas was inducted into the National Junior Honor Society, received the Presidential Award for Academics, and was elected to student council.

Auditions and Performances-Christian auditioned for and made the play production group. He also made the Varsity show choir (Free Spirit) again, and was named the Junior vocal captain (a Senior is always the primary vocal captain). Nicholas also auditioned for show choir and made the Junior Varsity show choir (In Motion). All 9th graders must start in the JV show choir. Both boys have had chorus and show choir concerts, Nicholas had a band concert, and Christian participated in the Play Production performance of "Willy Wonka".

Driver's Ed-Whew am I glad this is over. I can't even begin to explain what a nightmare this was. First we had a hard time finding a class that didn't interfere with all of Christian's activities, and then it was the problem of getting him to class at 3:15 each Tuesday and Thursday. I had to leave work early and check him out of school to accomplish this. Thankfully my new job offers me plenty of opportunities to work after hours so I could flex my time. Anyway, he took his driver's test and passed, and now all he has to do is go to the DMV the day after his birthday and get a photo made. According to him it is some universal conspiracy that his actual 16th birthday falls on Memorial Day.

Car Shopping-What else follows a new driver's license better than a new car? OK, it's new to Christian, but it is actually a 2002 Ford Escort ZX2, and he is in love with it. He actually named it Beatrice????? Whatever.

Loss- On April 11th, my manager at Children's Hospital passed away from Pancreatic Cancer. He was 55, married, had two adult daughters in California, a two year old daughter, and three elementary school aged step sons. His memorial service was held after Easter, and was filled with Hawaiian shirts, scrapbooks, Beach Boys music, and his surfboards. He was originally from California and he was the ultimate "Surfer Dude". I have lost one supervisor each Spring for three years in a row. Now I'm starting to get antsy when the snow melts.

Easter-This is where I get to be the doting Grandma. Alyssa and Logan were here for Easter, and I got some quality cuddle time. Logan is getting so big and so darn cute. I can't believe he is 7 months old. He loved his Easter Basket that the Easter Bunny was smart enough to deliver to Grandma's house. He really loved that the basket was K-State purple, Go Wildcats. He started pulling his toys and sun glasses out as soon as I sat him down. Did I mention that he is adorable. He loves to jabber, but hasn't said much more than baba yet. Alyssa is trying to teach him mama but he likes to say ggggggggggama. I'm just kidding, but he does go gggggggrrrrrrrr. Anyway he had a fever on Easter Sunday and Alyssa took him to the doctor when they got home. He had an ear infection poor thing.

Manhattan-Alyssa, Andy, and Logan closed on their house and will be moving in at the end of May. Yes, we will be going down to help, but I have insisted that I am the "babysitter". It's a hard job but someone has to do it :-)

Logan gave everyone quite a scare last month when he had an episode at day care. He stopped breathing briefly, but was fine. He ended up in the hospital having lots of tests done on him to find out what the heck is going on. Because of his feeding issues, and reflux history, I believe he aspirated. None of the tests in Manhattan were conclusive, but he is going to Kansas City to have a consult with a feeding specialist. He's fine, but he sure did scare everyone.

Alyssa and Logan will be home this weekend to visit with my dad and Geneva. They are driving through on their way to Seattle, and an Alaskan cruise, to drop off their dog. I will be dog sitting while they are away. They haven't seen Logan since Christmas so they will be pleasantly surprised.

OK, my fingers hurt. I think this catches us up for now, and I promise I'll try to be better about updating the blog.