Tuesday, January 29, 2013

An Interview with Grady.

OK, so here is Grady's interview... As I mentioned before, I ask the questions, and write exactly what they say, and try not to react to it. My goal is to know my little loves even more, and figure out how I can be a better mama to them.

On a side note, if you would like a little workout while you're here, play this fun game:
Every time you read the word "fish" or "fishing" do five squats. Or ten jumping jacks. Or you could pay me one nickel... I apologize in advance.


Me: Hey love, wanna do an interview?
Grady: Sure mama.
Me: What is one of your happiest memories?
Grady: Karate class.
Me: Why do you like being a kid?
Grady: Because it's funner.
M: Funner than what?
G: Being a grown up.
M: What is one word to describe you?
G: Fishing! (Go on... jump up!)
M: What advice would you like to give your parents?
G: How 'bout...uh....fishing!
M: If you could be an animal, which would you be, and why?
G: I wanna be a fish.
M: What do you like to do for fun?
G: Fishing. I like fishing. Because I like to go fishing and eat big fish. That's why I like to go fishing, ok? And I also like to read books and ride bikes. (Are you feeling the burn??)


M: What do you love most about Bella and Lilly?
G: Bella that she helps me. I love that Lilly pee pees in the potty, and she's a big girl.
M: What do you think you'll be doing ten years from now?
G: How about fishing! Yes! Because I like fishing so much.
M: What is your favorite thing to do in the summer?
G: Go fishing.
M: Name two things you would like to do as a family.
G: Go to Mimi and Pappy's house. Eat peppers. Roast marshmallows.

 
M: How old is your mom?
G: 99.
M: What shoe size does she wear?
G: Mommy size.
M: What time does your mom wake up in the morning?
G: 59.
M: What do you like to do with your mama?
G: Get my hair cut.
M: What do you like best about your mama?
G: That she kisses and hugs me.
M: How much time does it take your mom to make dinner?
G: Ten.
M: What does mama like to do?
G: Cook food, and make ice cream for us.
 

M: How old is your dad?
G: 59.
M: What is dad's favorite food?
G: Burritos.
M: What is your favorite thing to do with your dad?
G: Go fishing!
M: What does daddy like to do?
G: Go fishing with me.
M: What do you like best about your dad?
G: That he's my dad and he gives me food.
M: What is daddy's middle name?
G: Bryan. Daddy Bryan Buckman.


M: What is your favorite song?
G: Away in a manger.
M: What is your favorite book?
G: Curious George and the puppies.
M: What is your favorite place to eat at?
G: Chick-fil-a.
M: What makes you happy?
G: When someone gives me a picture.
M: What makes you sad?
G: If an alligator ate me.
M: What do you know about God?
G: That he can lift up a mountain. I like how he's strong, just like daddy. He made us, he loves us. And he didn't make the pizza, but he made the ingredients in the pizza, right mama?
M: Yep. What do you know about Jesus?
G: The bad people put him on the cross. He gave us water.
M: What could daddy do to be a better daddy?
G: Take me fishing.
M: What could I do to be a better mama?
G: Give me more hugs and kisses.

Oh, how I love this guy!!

Monday, January 28, 2013

An Interview with Bella.

So, interviews... We do them every few months. I ask a lot of basic questions and some heavy hitters. Usually the answers are funny, but sometimes revealing of deeper concerns. I ask the question, and write exactly what they say, and try not to react to it. My goal is to know these precious children more, and figure out how I can be a better mama to them.



Me: Hi babe. Are you ready for an interview?
Bella: Mom, can I have a chocolate chip if I do a good job?
Me: Sure. Alright, what is one of your happiest memories?
Bella: Holding that baby alligator.
Me: Why do you like being a kid?
B: Because my mom and dad protect me.
M: From what?
B: Bad spiders and bad guys.
M: What is one word to describe you?
B: A princess.
M: What advice would you like to give your parents?
B: Dad should wear a helmet when he goes into a fire, and you should wear a coat in case it gets cold.
M: If you could be an animal, which would you be, and why?
B: I would be a horse. Because I would like it.
M: What do you like to do for fun?
B: Hold baby alligators.
M: Anything else?
B: Dance and play the piano.
M: What is your favorite thing to do with your friends?
B: Hold babies.
M: What do you love most about Grady and Lilly?
B: Grady, that he's funny, and Lilly, that she plays with us.
M: What do you think you'll be doing ten years from now?
B: Swimming.
M: What is your favorite thing to do in the summer?
B: Go to the beach.
M: How much money would you like to get each week for allowance? What would you do with it?
B: Twelve. Like to buy people presents, ya know? I like to buy people presents.
M: Name two things you would like to do as a family.
B: Go to a show or the circus.


M: How old is your mom?
B: 50 probably.
M: How tall is your mom?
B: 97 inches.
M: What time does your mom wake up in the morning?
B: 9 o'clock. (I wish!)
M: What do you like to do with your mama?
B: Go shopping and make stuff.
M: What do you like best about your mama?
B: She's sweet and kind. And a good cooker.
M: How much time does it to your mom to make dinner?
B: 20 hrs.
M: What does mama like to do?
B: Take pictures and go to Target.


M: How old is your dad?
B: 50.
M: What is dad's favorite food?
B: Tacos.
M: How strong is your dad?
B: 100% strong.
M: How tall is your dad?
B: 1000% tall.
M: What is your favorite thing to do with your dad?
B: Tickle.
M: What does daddy like to do?
B: Read books.
M: What do you like best about your dad?
B: He's very silly.
M: What is daddy's middle name?
B: O'Sullivan?


M: What does Bella Grace mean?
B: Beautiful gift from God.
M: What is your favorite song?
B: Days of Elijah (by Twila Paris).
M: What is your favorite book?
B: The one about when I was born.
M: What is your favorite place to eat at?
B: Mr. Wongs.
M: What do you know about God?
B: He's powerful, and he made everything. He loves us so much.
M: What do you know about Jesus?
B: He's kind. He died on the cross to save us from our sins, because we couldn't get to God. He's like a bridge.
M: I love you baby.
B: I love you, mama. Can I have my chocolate chip?


Tonight, while I was tucking her in, I asked her what Bryan and I could do to be better parents. Gosh, that's a hard question, when I know there are so many answers that could come flowing out. My question was followed by a tearful answer about how she would like me to pay more attention to her and not so much to Grady and Lilly, and for both Bryan and I not to get angry when it's time to clean up toys. It's hard to listen silently and not say "yeah, but...".  It's hard to say "I'm sorry baby".  It's hard to say "thank you for your honesty, and thank you for telling me, and I'll work on not getting angry, and spending some more time with you". And while these moments are difficult, this is exactly why I love interviews.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Reptile Discovery Center... Sssss

If you're afraid of snakes, aligators and lizards, do not proceed. Come back in a few days.


Ok, for the rest of you brave souls... this weekend we took a trip to The Reptile Discovery Center Serpentarium in Deland.




There is a nature walk, with different reptiles to see along the way.
 








 
After we walked the nature trail, we went inside the Center to see even more fun snakes and lizards, and to watch something very scary.
 




Twice a day, four days a week, this center does venom extractions. This lab is one of only four in the Unites States.
From the website:

Venom extraction is the process of obtaining venom from a variety of venomous snake species by capturing and then allowing the snake to bite into a collecting receptacle in order to harvest the snake's venom. At the Reptile Discovery Center and Medtoxin Venom Laboratories a large number of snakes are handled each week for the purpose of venom collection.
The venoms collected are used in a host of research and pharmaceutical applications. Anti-venom, the medication used to treat snake bite victims, vetinary anti-venom and a dog vaccine against rattlesnake bites are all made initially using whole venom in part of the process. A wide variety of research is going on with snake venoms or certain components found in venoms, cancer research, viral research, AIDS, rabies, pain medications, diabetes, neurological and circulatory disorders, immunological and transplant research are just a few of the areas where venoms or venom components are being looked at.



 
The kids got to hold a baby alligator and snakes, and now Bella has decided that she wants to be a baby alligator holder when she grows up. Today she asked me if they are open on Sundays, "because we need to go up there and sign her up for a job" and Grady wants to be the venom extractor...
 
 
 
 
And on that fun note,
Happy start of a new week to you!
Kiss, Kiss.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Karate Kid and The Tiny Dancer.

First of all, I have to start by saying, that if you have kids, I would probably like your kids. I just think kids in general are pretty cool. They've got plenty to say, and they are a constant source of entertainment. Also of note, I am fully aware that boys and girls all over America take dance lessons and go to karate classes. I know that. But that being said, I just think my kids are so darn cool. And I so enjoy watching them try new things, and muscle through obstacles, and gain new skills. I love seeing the almost palpable change in their confidence when they are nervous and scared, but try something new, stick with it, and then rock it. Seriously.
 

We are so proud of this guy. He had a rough start of his first few karate classes but he is on a roll now of completing the whole class without coming back to us. He has so much fun, and actually does really well.






 My little long and lean. She is built just like her daddy. After coming back to dance class after a two year break, she is ready to rock and roll. She will be doing two dances in the recital, one tap and one ballet. She is the first one on stage for both dances, and that makes this mama smile.

 


After Bella's CC, we had a little picnic under the trees. The weather has been so nice and cool, it's almost hard not to go out and enjoy it (even for this homebody). Also, poor Lilly has had a runny nose and a cough, so Grady frequently informs me that she needs to get some vitamin D from the sun, so that she'll get better... I'm sure that came from Bryan.




This girl makes me laugh. She was so concerned that the birds in the trees wanted to come and eat her yogurt, and kept asking if the eagles (which there were none of) were going to bite her. Drama.


Oh, these little personalities, all their own. It's amazing to me how they are each so unique. They are funny, and quirky, and smart, and so darn cool. I am thankful to be their mama, and so grateful for the opportunity to get to know them. I think it might be time for another interview...

Happy Friday to ya, enjoy your weekend!
Go out an get some Vitamin D.

Monday, January 21, 2013

A lonely homebody, I would be.

By nature, I'm a homebody. If it were acceptable, I would stay in my pajamas all day, and I would be completely fine with someone going grocery shopping for me, and delivering it to my door. I might finally catch up on my laundry, cook a bunch of new things, and would do a million arts and crafts with my kids.
 
I think all-inclusive resorts are a dream come true, and a trek around Europe doing a day here, and a day there, and rushing to and fro, sounds like a nightmare to me. I love staying in places that have kitchens with refrigerators that I can stock, and dresser drawers that I can unpack my suitcases in.
 
Eventually, however, after all of that nesting, I would miss my friends and family. And as much as my kids like jama days, they would be missing people too. If only my friends would come spend jama day at my house with me... we could do arts and crafts, and laundry... Wouldn't that be fun?!
 
(It should be noted, that jama day is rare, and only occurs when my husband is at work, because he is not a homebody at all. That man is adventure guy, and he is all about running around outside, playing at the park, going fishing, and would totally choose a million vacation excursions over unpacking suitcases and stocking a fridge.)
 
Anyway, all of that to say, Friday the weather was cold and drizzly, and as much as I would have normally wanted to stay inside, I had made lunch plans with a friend, and I was SO glad I did. Between illnesses, and coughs, and Christmas plans, we had not spent much time with them over the past few weeks, and we were missing them.
 
 








Lunch turned into three o'clock, and "what do you have planned for dinner tonight?" "Uhh.. nothing really, what about you?" and "why don't you stay for pizza?" "ok". The kids played nicely, and we ended up staying until after 6pm.

Saturday we celebrated the first birthday of a sweet little boy, and then had a spur of the moment, fireside, chicken fajita meal, get together with friends and kids and ended with roasting marshmallows.

Sunday after church, we did a little shopping, then went to take pictures of our land (sniff sniff) for the realtor.

Which brings me to a side note- If you or anyone you know, are looking for ten acres of beautiful land in the Black Hammock of Oviedo, let me know. The land will need work. Like clearing, and digging, and bringing fill dirt in, etc... but if you have connections or extra money, or a bunch of fill dirt laying around, it might be just what you're looking for. It really is such a great location, quiet and secluded, and yet close to SR417. Here are a few pictures:




From there we went to celebrate Bryan's beautiful sister's birthday. I was so super excited to be able to take some maternity pictures of Brittany and her husband Eric, and in return, she took a few pictures of my bunch.

Bella was sporting a really beautiful hot pick feather headband, which I asked her to take off for the picture. You can see it laying behind her on the grass.


Then somehow, in the middle of two pictures, this happened... But nobody noticed at the time, until we were reviewing the pictures an hour later. I take that back, maybe Lilly noticed.



These kids LOVE being read to.


 This was an emergency candle stand in. I love it!
 
 
And after cake balls and ice cream and singing "Happy Birthday", we sat in the cool night air, under the stars, staring into the fire. The kids ran around wielding flashlights, and giggling, and we all agreed that we love these moments.
 

 
And so I guess I would miss a lot if I stayed all tucked neatly into my house all the time. A lonely homebody I would be. These friendships and relationships are what make life so meaningful, and I can't imagine life without them.