Tuesday, November 7, 2017
Will, you are 16! Oh my law! How did we get here? You would probably say that we got here because I never let you do anything even the slightest bit unsafe so there is no doubt how you got here. You were probably covered in bubble wrap! You think your brothers get to do all kinds of things you didn’t get to do, like play with knives and such😉 Little do you know how much I didn’t know when God made me your mama. You started the 10th grade this year. As usual, you took it in stride. You had already done 9th grade so this was old hat. Ninth grade was a bit of an adjustment. You started high school at Independence just across the street. It’s a big, beautiful school which I don’t think you appreciated. You were more annoyed that many of your middle school friends went to Heritage HS down the street. But, it didn’t take you long to find your way. You began running cross country. It wasn’t really something you were itching to do but we told you that you had to do something active so it is what you chose. You took to it quite naturally. You really only practice when you are required, and you still do really well. We keep trying to get you to do a little extra to see your full potential but that’s not of interest to you right now. And, that’s ok with Dad and me. You participate and have made some very nice, new friends. Cross country really helped you transition into high school. Practices began in the summer before your Freshman year so you walked in the first day of school with some familiar faces. Of course, you still have Braden and Conner that you are friends with from middle school. Those are still your best friends but they don’t run cross country so you don’t get to see them much. It’s a big school! You have run your second season of cross country now and continue to get better. I don’t think you enjoy it any more this year than last year but you enjoy the friendships so you don’t complain much about it. I feel bad for you. You have practice every morning at 6:30 am and have to be on the bus on Saturdays around 5:30 am. It’s harsh but you get up and get it done. That’s my Will. You got your license this year. You don’t have a car yet. I think Dad wants you to practice on our cars first. I would like you to wreck mine so I can get a new one but you never seem to want to drive the minivan when given a chance. I guess if you are going to break one, it will likely be Dad’s😊 . We are working on a car for you though. Strangely, you don’t seem to mind not having one. None of your friends have their license and school is too close to drive, so you just walk when you need to get somewhere. I am sure when you get a car of your own, you will find places to go. For now though, I’m ok with you just hanging out here. School is not at all your favorite. You don’t enjoy the pressures and are not driven by grades. A “B” is the same in your book as an “A”. I think a “C” is the same for you too. Sadly, your parents are wired differently so we prefer A’s but we have come to just appreciate you instead. Will, you are awesome but you are a bit challenging. You aren’t challenging in a normal teen way though. You are challenging because you are so different in the way you think about things compared to Dad and I. We are totally type A and you are more of a type B. We are driven by results, and you are not. We are stressed out, and you are not. So, you are definitely not a bad challenge. You just keep us on our toes and require us to try and think in a different way. You are a wonderful kid and I’m super proud of the man you are becoming. Your laidback attitude makes you easy to get along with. You rarely have conflicts with your brothers. They think you’re pretty incredible. You are kind and helpful. You are sweet to your momma, and I appreciate that. With four boys, many days I just need an ally. Thanks for being my ally. I love you Will. Happy 16th Birthday!
Sunday, October 15, 2017
Wow Sam, you're a teenager! I cannot believe that we are here. It feels like time creeps by until you look around and see that one of your kids is already 13! Ugh!!! This past year you began 6th grade, middle school. Of course that was a bit of a stressful adjustment for you. It is for most kids but you especially. You had a locker to be able to work, eight classes to find and keep organized with, and then the whole puberty thing. It was alot for a year:). The first couple of weeks were rough but you got to know the school counselor and realized that God put special people in every place to see you through this new journey. Your teachers weren't all favorites but you loved Coach Swanson for ILA. You were not a fan of your gym teacher. Your dad started calling him Coach Up-downs because you were stuck doing Up-downs on a regular basis in class. Apparently your friend Jason was a bit of a rebel rouser in class which got the whole class in trouble. He was not your friend for long.:( Karl is still your best friend. You played soccer with him on The Fighting Irish and had a few classes together at school this year. Although you didn't get to see him as much as you did when you were in elementary together, you still made lots of memories. You have lots of close friends so your social circle is wide. Tyler, Baby Tiger, moved away this summer so you miss him and the fun he brought to our house. We miss him too! You played your last season of soccer in the Spring. You were fast and furious. I am not sure you were a lover of the game but you gave it your heart and were ready to move on. This year you plan to use your fast beetles to run track in 7th grade. Thankfully, Coach Up-downs moved to another school and so did Jason so hopefully PE and track will both be pleasant experiences. You are a pleaser and rule follower. You don't like getting reprimanded. You work hard to do as your told and hate getting in trouble. The idea of it gives you anxiety. Anxiety is something you struggle with from time to time. It doesn't hold you back but causes you some discomfort now and again. Dad and I are working hard to help walk you through it but you are managing it pretty well on your own. Sam, you are a homebody. You would generally rather stay home than go out. You love playing with your brothers so you are content to just hang here. At times you squabble with Isaac and sometimes Mac. Lately I've noticed that you are a wonderful sounding board for Will. You allow him to vent and take his side as a great brother should. I love your heart and your fight. You want fairness and a black and white world. I do too buddy which is why I appreciate those qualities in you;0 You're finding that this isn't always the case, bummer, but you're growing up and adjusting. You're a kind, thoughtful friend. You can still cry big crocodile tears that break my heart but you also have an amazing laugh that fills me up. I love you Sam. Happy Birthday!
Wednesday, September 6, 2017
Happy Birthday Mac or Happy Belated Birthday Mac! Of course, this is late but filled with no less love;) Year six was exciting for you. Then again, you are an excited kid so probably every year is exciting, year six included. You kept busy for sure! You spent your free time playing soccer and basketball and you were quite the baller. The basketball team parents continually asked how much basketball you had played before this season. Your dad and I played it cool when we told them that it was your first time playing and that you have three older brothers so that makes you competitive. We wanted to brag about your natural abilities but we didn't because we're nice like that.:) The soccer parents were the same calling you the soccer star! You are a natural athlete and you hustle so you take care of things on the field or on the court. You are fun to watch! You started Kindergarten this year. You were very excited and loved making all kinds of new friends. Jihoo, Grant, and Affan were some of your best friends. Ms. Carlton was your teacher, and you loved her. She was a born Kindergarten teacher with a tiny voice and silly personality. You really enjoyed kindergarten except for the fact that you had to go everyday;0 That was an eye-opener and hard adjustment. Thankfully, you managed to make it just about every day and your classmates were happy about that. Apparently, you were quite the entertainer. Your teacher gave you the end of the year laugh award because you could always make the whole class laugh. She said that even if you came in and just said, "Hello", you had the kids in stitches. That does not surprise me. You are hilarious at home too. You have such a joy for life. You laugh big and smile even bigger. Of course, you get angry and frustrated at times, mostly at Isaac, and that anger or frustration is big too! You just emotion big;0 You are game for anything, anytime. You just seep joy and others want to be around that. You have a blast with your brothers and they are your true best friends. You call them "your boys" sometimes, and that makes me smile. They look out for you and you look out for them. You work hard to not get left behind by them but honestly, I don't think they wanna leave you behind. You're Macadoodle. Mac, you are the youngest of four boys. Some people would get lost in so many shadows but not you. You make your own spotlight. You are my snuggle buggle. You are witty, creative, and full of life. I love being your mom and experiencing life with you. You make me smile everyday. You are a precious gift and I cannot wait to see what this next year brings. I love you Macadoodle! PS - This is the year you created the "Aye Chihuahua song" and would have lived at Chik-fil-a if they would have let you;)
Wednesday, November 23, 2016
Isaac – Happy 9th birthday! Where has the time gone? Before I know it you will be in double digits and then I’ll blink and you’ll be off to college:(. You played soccer and basketball on the Sooner teams again this year. Ollie was your coach. His son, Marshall, was a friend of yours and tons of entertainment for Dad and me. You're pretty competitive and can get quite aggressive no matter the sport you are playing. Some days, you aren't feeling it and you don't fake it. On the days you are feeling it, you are one of the best on your team. This past year you finished up second grade with Mrs. Lazar as your teacher. She was super nice which is why you loved her and boy, she thought the world of you too! She regularly praised you for your willingness to help your classmates out, your complex thought processes, and your quiet sweetness. None of her comments surprised your Dad or me. She knows you very well. You are an amazing and unique kid, Isaac. You do your own thing, have your own opinions, and don't care if anyone else joins along. You are my only kid with style preferences. You know what you like and rarely change your mind. As a person who has more trouble making decisions, I admire the decisiveness in you. Isaac, you are not my kid who wears your heart on your sleeve. You don't really like to display expressions of love with kisses and "I love you". So when you snuggle up to me at bedtime, it sort of melts my insides. You are smart, witty, quiet, and unique. I love when you share what is going on in your head. It is always worth hearing about. Although you love to pester your brothers, you are a good kid with a great heart. I love you Isaac, and I am so proud to be your mom. Happy 9th birthday!!
Will – Happy 15th birthday! This is the year you get a learners permit! Ugh! When did you and I get so old?:) I am not sure I am ready for all of this. Next thing I know, you’ll be wanting to take a girl out on a date! You started high school this year. You were excited and a little nervous. You middle school was being divided into two different high schools and many of your friends were going to the other school. Luckily, your two closest friends are at Independence with you and you are quickly making lots of new friends. You started running cross country at Roach Middle School and you have continued it into high school. I don’t think, well I know, that you don’t love running cross country but you have been a sport about it. You stayed an hour late after school at Roach, and this year you went to school at 6:00 am every morning. I didn’t mind the after school thing but this before school practicing is tough on your parents. I can only imagine how tough it is on you when you still have a school day ahead of you. But, you were a trooper and plowed through. You ran JV and your team got second place in districts. Yay! You also made a lot of new friends which made your middle school to high school transition so much smoother, even if you don’t see it that way. J This summer you went on your first mission trip with church to Nashville and Birmingham. You were not apprehensive at all and really enjoyed feeding the homeless. You also went to church camp at Camp Wyldewood in Searcy, AR this summer. It was your first time going there. You didn’t know anyone else going but apparently you won many over with your wit and humor. In fact, you performed a stand-up comedy routine at the camp talent show and from what we heard, you brought the house down. I was nervous for you but I should have known that God would take care of you. You are my oldest Will so I worry about every new adventure you go on. You are forging new trails and making paths for your younger brothers. It is a big job and requires real courage but you do it with such calm. That is who you are though. You are calm and cool. You don’t get too riled up about much. Knowing the stubborn and outspoken little boy that you were, I am shocked at how patient and flexible you are now. You have three younger brothers and you are an awesome example for them. You are patient and willing to compromise. Quite often you just let them have their way because you know it means more to them than it does you. And, I think you get annoyed at their whining;) Will, you make me proud just about every day. You are smart and creative. You are sweet and kind-hearted. You make my job a whole lot easier. Thank you! Happy birthday buddy!
Sam – Happy birthday big guy! This past year you graduated from elementary school and got ready for middle school. You loved your time in fifth grade. Mrs. Treadway was your teacher. You really liked her and of course, she loved you! You are smart, witty, funny, and good. You wear your heart on your sleeve and treat people like they do too! You are kind and genuine. You are still best friends with Karl. When you are at school, you are like two peas in a pod. I think if I would let you walk the five blocks to his house, you would be like peas in a pod at home too! Unfortunately, for you, I am just not ready to let you go that far. I would be lost without my Sambo! You are still playing soccer and Dad is still your coach which means that you still play for the Fighting Irish. I don’t know that you love soccer but you take it in stride, give your best, and make me proud. I love to watch you out there. My sweet little Sam being aggressive! You had your appendix removed this year. The nurse called me from school and said that you were complaining of a stomach ache. She said that you didn’t have a fever, hadn’t thrown up but that you just looked like you felt bad. I think you have the magic touch with that nurse. So, I picked you up. After a couple of hours you still didn’t feel well. I didn’t know what to do. I thought that maybe it was the flu so I took you to urgent care for some medicine. Well, to our surprise, it was your appendix. You and I spent the night at the hospital and the next day, you had surgery. You got an IV and it totally creeped you out. You named it Phil I guess to try and make it a little less scary and gross. The surgery went great and you were home that day. You were really creeped out by your scars at first. Now, they are just your reminders of your bravery and that time they actually “removed an organ” from your body. I put that in quotes because you make a point of reminding Will that his surgery wasn’t nearly as bad as yours because he didn’t have an actual “organ removed”! You also got braces this year. You were excited about the idea about 5 months before getting the braces but of course, once it was time to put them on, you were not super jazzed. There was some major complaining and a lot of milkshakes for the first few days but you made it through. You still have quite a while before they come off but your smile is already so much brighter! Sam, you are a delight. You run the spectrum of emotions. At times, that is frustrating for me. Other times it brings me joy. Sometimes it makes me ache for you. You are pure and honest. You feel guilt from the top of your head to the tips of your toes. You are all heart, and I love that. You make me laugh, and you make me proud. I love you Sam! Happy Birthday!
Macadoodle – I know that this is super late post but please know that it is full of loveJ. Mac, you are a joy! Life is one adventure after another for you. Rarely, if ever, are you a kill-joy at our house. If someone has an idea, you are in! You are fun and energetic, creative and adventurous. You are special! This year you graduated preschool and you rocked it! Mrs. Knox was your teacher and you loved her. Of course, she loved you right back! Julien quickly became your best friend, and you repeatedly asked me to plan a playdate. About 2 months later, I finally got my act together and got his mom’s number and address. When you found out that they lived in the neighborhood right next to ours, you were thrilled!! Although you enjoyed preschool, you really wanted to start kindergarten this year. But, your dad and I decided we would have you wait. You would have been the youngest in your class and that wasn’t something we wanted for you. Also, keeping you in preschool meant one more year that I get a little more time with you alone!:) You were bummed about not going to big school because you really wanted to be with Sam and Isaac. But once you found Mrs. Knox and Julien, you were over kindergarten. You so badly want to be big. You want to read like the big boys. You want to compete like the big boys. You want to be a big boy. You do not want to be left behind. But kiddo, you are hard to leave behind. You keep up for sure! If the boys are doing it, you are right behind them trying to do it too. Luckily, you’re pretty cute so they enjoy your company. And you are a pretty quick learner so it isn’t long before you have mastered whatever it is they are doing! You played soccer again this season. You love it and are super competitive. You want to try karate too but I can only handle one sport at a time. Sorry buddy! We will get to it at some point. Macadoodle, you used to love to be my snuggle buggle. You learned it was a quick way to my heart. Now you aren’t so much into the snuggling but you know that is how you can win me over and get what you want;0 You are smart, funny, and awesome. Not too many people could carry a big name like MacArthur but you do! You make me laugh, bring me joy, and cause me to beam with pride. I love being your mom. Happy belated Birthday Mac!