Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The boys in my life

Caden has decided that he needs a "big truck with a hooker on the back". I am hoping and praying that he's just mispronouncing 'hook'.

I am married to a 10-year-old. We're driving along the other day (Stan at the wheel)in the rain, when I feel a nearly imperceptible shift to the right of the road. Where there was a puddle. I didn't think too much of it...until he did it again. I asked him about it & he nonchalantly told me he likes puddles. All day long, if it didn't impede other motorists, we swerved to hit the puddles.

And you know what? It WAS fun!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

My prayer for the year


Please help me to be the teacher that each of my kids needs. Please help me to see that they are in my room for Your purpose, that for a reason maybe unknown to anyone but You, they need me for that 50 minutes per day. Please help me to show love and patience to each of the babies placed in my care. Please make them feel welcome and safe. Please help me to show Your love and kindness and be with me because I can't make it on my own. Guide me as I try to make them better students and people, all the while being a mama, counselor, friend, confidante, referee, etc. And more than anything, let them see You & not me.

In Jesus' name,


Saturday, August 15, 2009

What Matters

I've had a lot of opportunity the last few weeks to reflect on what's important & what's not. This has been one of the best summers I've ever had for many reasons, one of which that may surprise some people.

I am so thankful we lost our Mountaineer. Seriously. We have found out that God is taking care of us & we are going to be just fine. We never would've sold it, but God knew we could live without it & He was right. We received more money from the insurance settlement than we ever would've gotten for trading it in down the line & paying off bills feels great! Having one car isn't going to be the hardship we thought & we're glad God forced it on us.

I am developing some great friendships in my Sunday School class. The ladies have been having a lot of social time this summer and getting to know different people has been a huge blessing for me. Between the ladies nights, slumber party(parties hopefully!), & the book club (that will meet for the first time in September), I am getting to know & love a lot of awesome gals!

I am so excited to get back to school! Knowing my colleagues & getting hugs Friday (our first day back) was awesome!! I get to teach 3 senior classes this year also, & I am so ready to go & tackle this new mountain (I LOOOVE British Lit in an almost obsessive way)! Teacher Field Day was great & even recovering from surgery, I got to participate.

I had a great teacher's conference in Dallas. There are some "What happens in Dallas, stays in Dallas" moments, but what I can say is this - getting to hang out with these people for a week (& ride in a convertible!) & teach with them during the year is a huge blessing. They make me want to be better for my kids.

I celebrated 13 years of wedded bliss with Stan. I canNOT believe it has been thirteen years!!! He, of course, looks more handsome and incredible as the years go by while I need a bit more...enhancement, shall we say, than I did at 22.

The product of that wedded bliss turned 4 this summer. He will be an only child. I had the 'no more kids' surgery last week...more on that next post.

Most of all, I am so thankful that God has surrounded me with people who don't judge my worth by my hip size. For the most part, I get to be with people on a daily basis who love me and accept me and 'get' me. I am terribly excited about the upcoming school year and all the chaos and activities that a new year always brings: football games, new kids to love, old kids to hug, books to read, family to see, & friends to hang out with.

Have a great year!!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Thank you God Part II

Stan left this afternoon to get money from the ATM for me, laundry detergent (for me as well) & something to eat. Caden decided to stay home with me (Thank you GOD!!).

I get a call about 15 minutes later from Stan. "I need you to come get me at Longmire & Brothers. I got hit. I'm okay. And you need to know that the truck is upside down right now."
I'm so glad he told me. Even knowing that, it was very difficult driving up to the scene, seeing the ambulance (with lights on), the firetruck, and all the cop cars. I threw the car into a parking place & I grabbed Caden's hand and probably dragged him across the street. Stan assured me that the blood I saw on his head and arm were from the window when he climbed out. He said a nice man cut his seatbelt for him so he didn't have to hang in the air. And no, I canNOT believe I just wrote that sentence.

One of the firemen immediately came over and asked Caden if he wanted to see the firetruck. Caden grabbed my hand and held onto the fireman with the other. He was interested in the truck, but didn't want to get into it - he's not a fan of the noise.

Later when I told him we needed to thank God for keeping Daddy safe, he asked me, "Are the firemen God, Mama?" I teared up a little and said, "No. But God is with them all of the time and He helps them help other people."
After we took some more pictures with Stan's phone (the camera died), he said he was still hungry and with a bleeding head and arm, he said he wanted a Freebird's burrito.

We're down to one car & we're not sure about a lot of things right now. But - Stan is safe and at home with us - he didn't even need to go to the hospital.

Thank you nice man who cut his seatbelt.

Thank you policeman for telling us what was going to happen step by step.

Thank you firemen for being there to help and being sweet to my little boy.

...Thank you God.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Thank You God

Caden's prayer tonight:

Thank you God. Mama, you're not saying it. Say it
(He repeats) Thank you God. (I solemnly echoed)
Indivisible with liberty and justice for all. (I repeated, albeit a little less solemnly)
Thank you for turning the TV on. (me lauging uncontrollably, barely able to get the words out)
And for not wasting any power. Amen

I'm going to be away this week at a teacher conference. Oh the things I will miss:
1) Caden helping me walk down my dark school hallway because he "has big eyes and he will use them to help Mama."
2) Caden asking me to read him a book and then tell him a story. Now, Caden gives me the basic plotline, characters, & setting so all I need to do is draw them together.
3) Stan giving me a blow-by-blow account of the Tour de France.
4) Reading on my bed while Caden watches TV in our bedroom.
5) Hearing Caden sing the theme song from the Geico commercial, "Let me be myself"
6) Taking Caden to Lowe's & hearing him tell another little boy (who is playing on the riding lawnmowers like Caden) that he will share his (imaginary) tools with him. Caden likes to fix the lawnmowers by lifting the hood, tinkering with the engine, & then the most crucial step - blowing leaves in the engine.

I will miss both of my boys so much!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

A boy, a party, & a dog

There's not a trace of my genetic code in that kid!
We had Caden's party yesterday. I was pretty nervous about it because, well, that's just what I do. It was his first party & my first as a birthday boy's mama, so it was a little nerve-racking.

I shouldn't have been nervous. The kids started piling in around 10 & within a few minutes were all outside playing on the moonwalk/bouncy thing we rented for the day. I had to do the girl thing & cut the cake & give it to all the kids. I know it sounds silly, but doing typical girl/mama things doesn't come easily to me.

I hope everyone wasn't expecting a great big show, because at the Aalbers house, we're pretty laidback. The kids were running back & forth, inside & outside playing. Our living room was a wreck with toys! A friend of Caden's gave him a bag filled with all sorts of outdoor games, so a few dads put them together & the kids played with that. Everyone was sweaty and happy when they left.

After the party we went to lunch with Oma & Opa (Stan's parents) and then came back home and recuperated from the party. The moonwalk guy told us we would have the bouncy thing much longer than we had paid for because he had to travel out of town to break down a rental for a VBS going on in Milano. Caden was able to get a few more hours of playtime out of it.

About 6, he shows up at our house & Stan sees a black blur go across our backyard window. The guy brought his dog, Bella! We all sat on the back porch and played fetch with the dog while her daddy broke down the moonwalk. I always think it's hilarious, because the bigger the dog is, the more Caden loves it. He cannot stand little dogs; he's terrified of them. But a great big lab or Weimeraner (sp?) makes him shriek with glee.

I hate to say it & if any of the kiddoes' parents at our party are reading this,I am sorry, but this was the highlight of his day. He laughed and had so much fun with her. Maybe in a year or 2 we'll get him one of his own.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Big Boy

Caden turned 4 on June 20th. We made the deal with him that on his birthday, he would throw away his little boy potty.

He was more than OK with it.

He hasn't missed it at all!

And just because there are never any pictures of the 2 of us (you can tell I'm the photog of the family), here's a few pictures of us playing at a park on his big day.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

It's been how long????

I'm not really sure where to start blogging since it's been sooo long, but here goes.

I apologized to Caden awhile ago for yelling at him. He rubbed my back & kissed me & said it was OK. I wanted to say, 'Are we friends again?' but I don't believe in parents & kids being friends so I asked, "Are we Mommy & Caden again?" I know, pretty lame.

He said yes & then asked me, "What happens if you're not my mama?"

I said I would always be his mama.

He asked, "But what if you're not?"

I replied, "Do you want a new mama?"

He started to say yes but then stated, "Actually, no."

I laughed and thinking we were done, I started to walk away.

But he couldn't let it go. "I always want the old mama...and you're old."

I looked back at him and he grinned like he knew exactly what he had said.