Wednesday, April 27, 2016

So what if my boy likes pink

^^This is my Dax.
 He oozes awesomeness.  He is smart, athletic, witty, a leader, funny, and a little stinker who is turning my hair gray.
 Yesterday he got his little world turned upside down and mama bear is not so happy about it.
The kids in his class made fun of him.  
I don't care if you are six. I will meet you after school at the monkey bars.
He has been saving his pride tickets at school all year long for a backpack (pride tickets are tickets they earn for good behavior, work done, etc then they get to buy stuff with them)   
Backpacks are 400 tickets which is like ten million dollars in adult money.  I'm being dramatic but you know what I mean. 
He was super excited when he went to the pride store to make his purchase.  The lady there told him the only backpack left was pink and asked if he still wanted it.  He said yes because he likes pink.
Then he went back to class and the little monsters in there made fun of him.  Just an fyi I had several other words typed before I put monsters but I'm trying to be more Christlike, and ladylike, so I switched it. Look at me making progress.  
Here's his backpack he worked so hard to get.
He was happy about it.  Until those dang kids were mean. Then he was embarrassed.  He finally had one little friend of his lean over and tell him he liked pink too.  That kid rocks. 
I told him I would call his teacher and see if he could switch it for something different. I also told him that he didn't have to take it to school if kids were going to be mean. He could just use it for his toys and books at home.  He opted to keep it and store his treasures in it.
 I threatened my other boys that if they so much as made one mean comment about him having a girls backpack they would be scrubbing walls/dishes/toilets for the next 50 years.

Why can't my boy like pink?  What is so wrong with the world that my 6 year old has to have his feelings crushed because he got what HE wanted and what HE worked so hard for.  
Makes me wonder how many times I've made someone feel bad for choices they have made.  I'm sure I've done it on numerous occasions and didn't even realize it.  Why does it take someone hurting my kid for me to open my eyes?
Everyone is different.  People should be able to like what they want without having to feel ashamed about it.  That's what makes the world go round.  How boring would it be if everyone was carrying a red backpack.
Dax you keep doing what you want buddy.  Don't let people make you feel bad when they are mean. Unfortunately, it's probably going to get worse before it gets better. The people who make fun of you are the wrong ones. Not you.  Hold strong to your values and beliefs.  If you do you will go far in life.  Then one day when you have a fantastic life you can look back on those people and know you didn't stoop to their level.  I know you.  I know you are kindhearted and strong and are probably helping those kids in class today who made fun of you yesterday.  That's why you win.   You are the good in the world.  Always remember to be the good. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Washington D.C.

I realized something when I went back to re-read my last post.  There are way more pictures of me than I am comfortable with.  This one will probably be just as bad because here's part 2 of the trip Nate and I took.  A grown-ups only vacation (actually, the verdicts still out on whether Nate and I are considered grown-ups yet) means no kids in the pics to take the attention off me.  My apologies if you get sick of seeing my face.  

So after our time in New York we jumped on a bus to head to D.C.  If I would have known beforehand that the bus goes under the freakin Hudson River I would have never set foot on it. Apparently when we got to New York we went under it too. I was too distracted by the thought of not having clean unders for a week I didn't even notice (remember lost baggage from last post?).  This is the kind of stuff my worst nightmares are made of (driving under water, not losing my suitcase with all my clothes for a week in it.  However, that is probably on my top 10 list of nightmares as well).  Seriously, the thought of being in a tunnel under water still about puts me in a panic. But no worries, I survived to tell this tale.
After we arrived Mike took us to see the Washington D.C. temple. We turned the corner on the freeway (or beltway as he called it. Don't know what those are but whatever.) and there it was in all its beautiful glory.  It really is on display, front and center, for all to see. The location is prime and that's a plus because more people need Jesus in their life.  Maybe that will help.

Here are our D.C. pics -- in no particular order because that would take too much effort right now and I'm being lazy. 
 Contrary to Nate's facial expression he really did like this car.  There was something cool or old or expensive about it to make it museum worthy but I have no idea what exactly it was.

One thing I learned while on this vacation is there are numerous Smithsonian's.  I thought there was one.  The one from Night of the Museum.  I was wrong.  Me being wrong is quite rare, just ask Nate. 

I am so awkward in photos.  What do I do with my arms?  Pose, fold them, jazz hands?  I don't know.
The wind was fun.  My hair loved it.

We struggled for a good 10 minutes trying to take a selfie.
 I wanted to buy a selfie stick, mike told me if I did he would disown me. 

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall was amazing and sad.
I had no idea how big it is. Too many names on it.

This ^^
 this is what I'm talking about when I say I need the kids in the pictures.  My eyes are squinty, my hair in the wind --yikes, I have about 4 chins. Cute on the kids, not so much on me.  I bet nobody even noticed the White House in the background because they couldn't get past the hot mess I am.

Have I mentioned it was windy?

 Jude was a trooper.  We drug him around to a bunch of museums.  That makes for a long day for a 3 year old.  However when we got to the Renwick he perked right up and told me all about what was in each room.  Smarty pants. He takes after his favorite aunt (that's me, just to clarify).
Old tires ^^
Bug art.  It was actually pretty awesome. 

This kind of art is cool.  The classic paintings from Warhol, Picasso, Pollock, Rembrandt, etc. were so cool to see in person.  I took an art class in college and studied these artists but wasn't really into it.  I would appreciate it so much more now.  
What I didn't get was the art display of cardboard pieces stapled together. It didn't look like anything to me.  I totally could have done it.  Unfortunately I didn't get a picture of it.  I was too distracted trying to figure out how it got into the museum in the first place. To each his own I guess.

Dorothy's ruby slippers

Sunstone from the Nauvoo temple

 Abe Lincoln's top hat he was assassinated in.
The National Museum of American History had the coolest stuff in it.  I could have spent the whole vacation there. 
Jude was super excited to show me Elmo.  Mike is showing off how much of a creeper he is.  Can you see him?
Ford's Theatre

The Pentagon Memorial.
The benches that faced one direction were for the people on the plane who died.  The ones facing the other direction were for those who were in the building that died. It is a beautiful memorial.
 Then there was Arlington National Cemetery.  So humbling and peaceful and spiritual.
I'm so glad we made it for the Changing of the Guard. 

We also stopped in to see the Constitution, Declaration of Independence, and Bill of Rights.  Absolutely no photography in there.  That was cool but crowded so I didn't get to sit and look at them too close.  I'll tell you one thing, the guards at those places are serious about their jobs.  I made a bit of a joke that I thought deserved at least a chuckle to the guard in the room with the Constitution and I got nothing. I wasn't being disrespectful.  I just threw a little light humor into the atmosphere. He just stared me down until I left the room.  Hint taken.  I'm not as funny as I think I am. Okay, I get it. It's serious stuff.  But you could at least crack a smile.

I think I've rambled on enough about D.C.  Overall I give it an A-.  If the guard would have given me a chuckle it would have been an A.
So much history in D.C. and so much to see.  There were a lot of things we didn't get to see but I made it to everything I wanted to so I'm good. I'm glad I got to experience it.
Thanks for being adventurous Mike and Mandy so we could benefit from it.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Start spreading the news

I checked off so many things on my bucket list last week I don't even know where to begin.  I never in a million years thought I would actually take a trip to the Big Apple but the universe aligned just perfectly for me and Nate and we were able to go.  Here's part 1 of our NY/DC trip. 

I know Nate doesn't look too thrilled in this pic but there are a couple reasons for that.
1- It took us forever to figure out how to get on the train to get from the airport to Penn Station. We were a typical case of country folk trying to understand how the big city works.
2- he was sick and tired of listening to me whine because my suitcase got lost.  Every. Time.  Every single time I go somewhere something like that happens.  I could feel it in my bones too that it would. Nate says that is why it always happens to me. I need to work on my power of positive thinking.  The thought of not having clean clothes for a week about did me in.  But again the universe aligned just right and my luggage was delivered to Mike's NYC apartment in the middle of the night.

Speaking of Mike's NYC apartment (i keep saying NYC because at the moment they have 2. One in DC one in NYC....that's a story within itself.  You want to know the details you should check out amanda's blog.  It's great.  I would put a link but I don't know how.   Anyway, back to his NYC apartment....check out that view
the view out the window wasn't half bad either.

Mike and family had a cute little message on the floor for us.  I think it was to distract us from the fact that there was no furniture yet.  Chairs are overrated anyway.

Our first time on the subway was interesting.  Everyone must have been heading to work because the place was packed.  Packed solid. I'm pretty sure Nate hasn't even been as close to me as some of those people on the subway were.  And you know we have 4 kids together so that's saying something.
 So there was a homeless guy on there laying across a whole row of seats.  I was sure he was dead and was ready to go put my finger under his nose to make sure he was breathing when he sat up.  He looked around for a minute, walked up next to Nate who was standing at the back door, said excuse me and opened the we were moving. I thought Nate would be sucked out and left for the rats to eat (rats in the subway are real. So nasty). Anyway homeless guy used the tracks for his toilet, came back in, popped open a beer from his backpack, and read his paper.
Not a fan of the subway.  Dirty, underground, jumbo sized sewer rats, etc. 
It scared me on numerous occasions.  Then I realized this big guy with the black hoodie was with me. I was fine.

9/11 Memorial
Lady Liberty.  We had every intention of taking a ferry over to get closer, then once we got there decided not to.  There was so much to see and so little time.
It was a bit chilly when we went.  I ended up having to buy a hat to stay warm.  Nate and I didn't scream tourist enough so I figured I would wear a bright pink one that said NEW YORK across the front. You know, like all the local folk do.

The highlight of the trip for me......Wicked.  I debated whether or not to buy tickets because I was sure I would have to sell my firstborn to afford them.  I bit the bullet and did it anyway. Soooooooo glad we did.  Nate was not too excited about it at first but he came around.  Secretly I think he wants to be a Broadway star and it was too hard for him to watch his dreams overtaken by someone else.  I can totally see him dancing around a stage singing.  In tights. 

Highlight #2 of NYC.....banana pudding.  Heaven in a cup.  I'm not even that big of a banana fan but I heard several people say you have to try the banana pudding so I did.  I should have never done it though because now I crave it constantly.  Dream about it even.  We were meant to be together.  Too bad it's 2000 miles away.  Long distance relationships never work out.

We stumbled across the temple by accident.  It was a pleasant surprise.  New York is crazy because everything looks the same.  Lowe's looks the same as the apartment building next to it.  

I had seriously high expectations for Gray's Papaya.  I've always wanted to try one of their hot dogs.  I can't say I was disappointed because the hot dog was delicious.  I was just expecting more.  More dog, more options, more something. 
Then all of that need for more was wiped away when I walked outside and read their sign. Best sign on a business ever.  Two points for the clever fella (or lady) that came up with that. 
"Franks for your business" = Hilarious.

Times Square was exactly how I thought it would be. Crazy busy and crowded but fun. Non-stop horn honking. All the time the horns are being honked.  

On a scale of 1-10 I give NYC an 8.5 (still can't get past the subway as a urinal and the rats).
There seem to be no traffic rules in that city but everyone understands to just get out of everyone's way.  Those New Yorker's have it down.
Now that I've been there done that I'm not sure I would go back.  I liked it while we were there but don't need a New York fix like I need a Disney fix.  Unless it's to go to Broadway and get banana pudding -- then count me in!