Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A Little Affection

Every morning when I put Haley on the bus she buckles herself in, I give her a kiss and tell her to Have a nice day!  Then I step off of the bus turn around and wave goodbye.

Over the years this routine has changed very little.

It took her awhile to be able to buckle herself in, but what I do has always been the same.

Some of her bus drivers encouraged Haley to wave back at me or to say Bye Mom.  She did wave back when she was really little, but she hasn't done that for years.  That doesn't change my routine.

I was a little hurt when she stopped waving back.  I am a little sad that she doesn't say anything to me.  I would really like it if she did both of those things, but what I have noticed lately is that she seems to really like it that I do what I do.

My child does not complain when I give her a kiss.  I know that is not normal behavior for a fifteen year old.  This is one instance where I am happy that she is not "normal."  She also has gotten really good at giving me hugs and acquiescing whenever I want to give her one, but that doesn't happen on the bus.  She doesn't smile either.  She just accepts it.

What I have noticed is that as I step off of the bus and turn around she is looking.  She watches to see that I am going to wave.  Again, she doesn't smile, but she watches.  I noticed that this morning.  She has a substitute bus driver this week and when she has a sub she tends to be a little on edge.  I can sense that she knows things are amiss.  So she was watching for me to turn and smile and wave.  And I did.  And she kind of nodded.  She didn't smile.  Somehow I just knew that she acknowledged me and it felt good.

So, today I am grateful that I can still show my teenage daughter affection in public and that she seems to be glad that I do.

~Haley's Mom, Thankfully

This month I am focusing on Gratitude.  What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Since we got home I have been busy.  

I am learning that my brain can only handle so much, but apparently I haven't learned to stop trying.  When Haley is in school I fool myself into thinking that I have things under control.  Then she comes home and starts her routine of requests.  I keep trying to do my job, my hobbies, the things that are on my list.  

Haley doesn't care.  

She wants her requests met.  

She has no reason to expect any different.

The problem is that I am distracted.  When she wants something I am distracted thinking about what I am doing, what I am working on.  When she wants something she distracts me.  So I have a problem.  No, I don't think my daughter is a problem.  I have a problem of trying to do too many things at once.  I feel like everyone does.  I have always had trouble relaxing.  I just don't know how. 

We were away from home over the weekend.  I wasn't able to do what I needed to do.  I am behind on my housework.  I am behind on my job.  I should have relaxed.  I didn't.

So today I don't know what I am thankful for.  I am struggling.  I guess I am thankful that I do have a job.  I am thankful that I have a job that I feel passionate about.  I think that is why I am so distracted these days.  It is important to me.  

I am also grateful that my daughter is flexible enough that her distracted mom doesn't throw her off too much.

~Haley's Mom

Saturday, November 3, 2012

iHeart My iPhone

Today we visited a college campus that Haley's Big Sis may attend.  We walked all over that campus at least three times.  It was intense.  We climbed so many stairs - I don't think I have ever climbed that many stairs in one day and I used to attend this college.

Haley was awesome.

She just trudged along like a trooper.  In fact I don't think she ever complained. 

About going up and down stairs.  

Sitting in endless meetings, not eating lunch when she was hungry and not going shopping when she wanted to.  That she complained about.

One of the meetings that we attended was in a fairly small classroom.  There were probably about thirty people in the room and Haley was in a bad mood.  I knew better than to shush her. 

The other day during church Haley's Big Sis sat with Haley while I was singing with the choir.  She entertained her by letting her look at the pictures on her iPhone.

So, I pulled out my iPhone and opened up the photos and handed it to her.  She kept herself entertained throughout the entire meeting.  She did keep showing me pictures that she liked, but I put up with it.  It kept her quiet.  Well, relatively quiet.  She didn't really talk, but she was kind of going "uh, uh, uh" while she held the phone over to me.

I literally just kept thinking - I am so thankful for my iPhone right now.

My husband and I attended a parents meeting, of course she came along.  She was bored.  She didn't want to sit anymore.  What she really wanted was to go shopping.  We had passed up the shopping many times.  I had told her the schedule and that shopping was last, but she wanted to go when she wanted to go.

So I handed her my iPhone again.  I was praying that the batteries held up.  She was completely happy.  She found pictures of her and her Grandpa and spent most of the hour long meeting flipping between three pictures.

So today I am thankful that my child was able to walk all over that campus - that really impressed me.  I was actually getting pretty tired and hot.  She did great.  And I am thankful for my iPhone and the fact that I had some pictures on it that Haley wanted to look at.

~Haley's Mom, Thankfully

This month I am focusing on Gratitude.  What are you thankful for today?

Friday, November 2, 2012

Getting Things Done

Haley knows what needs to be done.

This summer when I did the laundry Haley would go upstairs and get her dirty clothes and bring them down and put them in the laundry room.  I never asked her to do it, she just did.

When the dryer alarm went off she would make a noise and come and get me.

Once I had folded the clothes, if I didn’t take them right upstairs she would come and get them and take them up to her room.  She didn’t put them in her drawer.  She put them on her bed, which is interesting because when we come home from a shopping trip she always puts her new clothes in her drawers.

Now that she is in school I usually have the laundry done by the time she comes home so I am not getting as much help.

Yesterday Haley came in to the family room and noticed that she had a pile of clean, folded clothes on the couch.  She picked them up and carried them up to her room.

Today I packed clothes for her and myself because we are going to start our college visit tour this weekend.  Haley’s Big Sis is a senior and we are starting to plan for next year.  I told Haley that we are going on a road trip this weekend, but I didn’t tell her that we were leaving as soon as she got home from school. 

When she got home we told her our plans and she started gathering her things.  She kept asking me about her clothes.  I told her that I had already packed her clothes.  I told her about ten times.  She didn’t seem to believe me.  Her Dad had already put the suitcase in the truck so she didn’t get to verify what had been packed.   

Thinking about it, I realize that it really wasn’t fair to her, but it is too late now.

Haley took her purse and her magazines and her stuffed pillow pet horse JoJo out to the truck.  I was busy getting ready so I assumed she was just sitting in the truck waiting to go.  Eventually we were all ready and we were off. 

About two hours in to the trip I looked in the rear view mirror and as my brain was forming the question “What the H…?”  Haley’s Big Sis exclaimed “Haley!  Why did you bring your pumpkin?”  I was laughing so hard that I had to really concentrate to stay in my own lane on the road.  I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time.   

I guess Haley had pulled her pumpkin out from under her Big Sis’s pillow where she had stashed it.  She had plenty of time to carry out her plan, I just don’t really know why she did it.

So today I am thankful that my daughter helps me around the house and is a good planner and packer.  I am also grateful for laughter.   It is the best medicine.   

I hear it keeps you young too, so that’s good.

~Haley's Mom, Thankfully

This month I am focusing on Gratitude.  What are you thankful for today?

Thursday, November 1, 2012


This month I am going to focus on Gratitude.  I will probably blog about many different things, things that are happening in our house on a daily basis, but throughout it all I will focus on what I am thankful for.  It may take different forms.  I want to challenge myself to post every day like I did in October.

I think I could go on and on about what I am thankful for.  

Gratitude is a natural state for me.

Today, like always, I am Thankful for my beautiful daughters.  I am so very blessed.  They are both special in their own ways and they both make my life so much better with them in it.

I am thankful that they love each other.  There is no doubt.  They have their moments like all siblings do, but there is a really strong bond there.  

My friends are always commenting about how Haley's Big Sis cares for her, how she treats her.  She is very compassionate and caring and patient in public.  At home she can be that way too, but she is also a normal big sister.  She gives her guff, she won't let her get away with anything, she watches out for her, but at the same time she will catch her off guard with a tickle, a joke, spontaneous wrestling or a long hug.

Haley loves her Big Sis too.  She always wants to include her in what she is doing, even if it isn't something that her Big Sis would be that interested in.  Haley wants to share.  She listens to her and she communicates with her.  They have always had their own special language.  When they were small and I couldn't tell what Haley was saying her Big Sis often knew.

I am thankful for the ways that they each reflect our personalities.  They can both be silly or serious when it is appropriate.  We can joke with them.  They can be "typical teenagers" at times, but when we call them on it they smile and go right back to being the little girls that we have been raising.  At other times they both can be so mature that I am taken aback.  I have to remind myself that they are young.  I also see some of the not so nice qualities from our personalities in them.  It is at those times that I take stock and remember to act differently around them because I see how we can influence them.

I love having two very different girls and I love that they have some things in common.

They are both friendly and fun-loving.

They are both strong-willed and stylish.

They are both kind and caring.

They are both quick-witted and smart.

I am very grateful for them.

~Haley's Mom, Thankfully

What are you thankful for today?


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