Tuesday, May 20, 2014

RODEO

Last week, I went to my first rodeo!  I've been wanting to go to one and see what it's all about, and we had one here in our town last week.  The sheriff's office puts one on each year, and this year I sponsored it, so I got free tickets.
 Tootsie and Fitz went with me, although it was the 2nd rodeo for the two of them.  She took Fitz to one a few weeks ago, too!  This boy gets around!
 I'm glad someone told me earlier that day that I needed to wear my boots!  I'm always looking for an excuse to wear them, ha!
 It was a relatively small rodeo, but very interesting to me since I had never been to one.
 Fitz enjoyed it, too, except for when they roped the calves...he was not happy until they let them back up to run around again!
Have you ever been to a rodeo?  I think I would like to try a bigger one and see what it's all about, but this one was fun!  A new cultural experience!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Career Day

A few weeks ago, I got a message on FB asking if I would want to come speak to the elementary school students in our town, for career day.  I thought it sounded like fun, so I accepted the invitation.
 
As the day came closer, and the morning arrived when I was scheduled to go talk, I wondered what on Earth I would tell a bunch of FIRST GRADERS about my job!  I handle divorces?  You mean all moms and dads don't live together forever?  I handle DHR cases?  Oh, you mean I may have to leave my mom's house and live with strangers??  I handle criminal matters such as murder and sex offenses?  Um, no.  None of these are appropriate!
 
My best friend Heather had a great suggestion, to talk about rules instead.  How sometimes people come to see me to see if they are following the rules, or sometimes someone accuses them of breaking the rules and they need someone to help them in court, to tell their side of the story.  Yes!  I went with that!
 
So I got to my designated classroom, and look what was outside the window:
Kind of hard to compete with the FIRETRUCK!  Besides me and the firefighters, there was also a police officer, music minister, banker, career tech teacher and a gym owner.
 
While I waited on my first class, I took a selfie...what else would I do?

 Ok, y'all first graders ask some funny questions!  At first, when they came in, they all wanted to know if I was the nurse...I'm not sure how their nurses dress at their doctor's office, but I had a business suit on.  Ha!
 
One of my first questions was, "Do you know everything?"  Well, I like to think so, but no, sweetie, I don't.  Then one child said, "My mama went to court.  My daddy didn't pay child support, so she took him to court."  Um, yes, that does happen sometimes.
 Then one child said, "I don't know if my mom gave me up or what, but the judge said I have to live with my dad."  Sad.
Some of them had really good questions, like how long does it take to go to school to be a lawyer; do you like your job?; what's your favorite part about your job?  My answer to that?  I get to talk all day long and I get to argue all the time.
 
Some of the teachers had good questions, too, but one of them wanted to know if I had ever had a murder case.  Well, yes, but I didn't really want to talk about that with first graders!  It was very interesting to me to see how different each class was, and I found that most of them took on the personality of their teachers.  Some were more chatty, and others were more reserved and quiet.  The highlight of my little talk?  I gave each of them a business card.  You would have thought I gave them money, that's how excited they were!  A bunch of them said they would call me, ha!
 
Anyway, it was a fun day on Friday, and I hope the kids enjoyed it as much as I did!

Friday, May 16, 2014

It's Already Over?

It's hard to believe it, but it's true:  Fitz's first year of preschool is already over!  He had so much fun this year, and has learned and improved so much in so many areas since he started school.  We could not be more pleased with his preschool!

 They had an End of School Program last night, before the graduation ceremony, so all of the classes could participate.  The theme was "JOY"!
 
Here's Fitz coming down the aisle to the stage...
 He spotted Papa on his way down and the face he made was so funny!  Sorry for the blurry pic, but he was on the move, and could not believe he saw his Papa there!
And here he is on stage:
 (Front row, pink shirt, right in the middle)
 
The little girl on his right was in his class and he watched her sing and talked to her a few times, but the girl on his left got "the look" a few times...hahaha!  I think he felt squished up there and for some reason thought it was her fault.  We were cracking up!
 
He didn't sing a whole lot, but he did get into this one song.  Here's a snippet for your viewing pleasure:
 
 I didn't take many photos, but here he is with his two sweet teachers, Mrs. Sondra and Mrs. Haley:
 
He adores both of them!  I have no idea how we will convince him that it's ok to have a different teacher next year after having these two this year.  They have loved him, taught him so much, and even spoiled him a little, too.  We could not have asked for a better first year of preschool.
 
I can not wait to see what God has in store for Fitz in the years to come!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Mother's Day

We started our Mother's Day fun on Saturday, by putting that red lip cookie cutter to use!


My aunt gave me the best Christmas cookie recipe ever, this past Christmas, and even my first attempt came out delicious, so we made some Mother's Day cookies with that same recipe.  I made the dough Saturday morning, and after naptime, it was ready to use!  We made lips and hearts...because that's what Mamas do: kiss and love.
 
Fitz was not interested in cutting the shapes this time, but he was very interested in helping me decorate the cookies.  I'm still not good at the icing and decorating, but I'm working on it.

 We also did a little tasting.
I gave him a spoon to help with his sprinkles and icing, but he used it to chop up his cookies instead?!?  All boy.

What about those curled up little toes right there?
 Here are the ones I worked on alone, so we could have a few cute ones for Tootsie on Sunday, ha!
 They may not be the prettiest, but we made them together, and that's what counts.  Oh, and the fact that they tasted really good!
John went shopping with us Saturday and took us to lunch since he had to work later that day and Sunday, too.  We had a good family day together, in spite of the rain we had that day.  Sunday we went to church as usual and took a three generation pic to commemorate Mother's Day!
 
I know it's hard for John since he lost his Mom, but he did make me feel loved and appreciated for Mother's Day, too!  He gave me two sweet cards, one from him and one from Fitz, and a pretty orchid!  He says I have another gift on the way, too!  I told him he and Fitz are gift enough, and I meant it, but I do love presents, ha!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Munchies with Mom

I've been looking forward to "Munchies with Mom" pretty much since Fitz started preschool.  I've seen photos of friends with their children around Mother's Day for years before, and always thought, "That is so sweet!  It looks like so much fun!"
 
Of course, Munchies with Mom had to be on the one day a month that I have court at 8:00, and preschool starts at 8:30.  The one day a month that I have about 10-15 cases on the docket.  Thank the Lord I practice among friends and the judge said it would be fine for me to sneak next door to the preschool and come right back to court!  Fitz went with me to court, and had to stay in the courtroom while I did one case.  He was so good, though!  He just walked around and looked at everyone while my case was heard!
 
We walked next door and the first thing we did was make a picture together!
 I let Fitz pick where things went, and he did a pretty good job.  See that glue stick in his hand?  He really impressed me with his glue skills!
 The finished product:
 After we made our picture, we went down the hall for some munchies.  Fitz loved it and pointed for me to sit next to him and have a snack, too.

 When I took him back to his class, he gave me a Mother's Day gift, picked just for me!  He made a potholder with his handprints, and gave me a cookie cutter shaped like red lips!

 If you know me IRL, you know I love some red lipstick, or really any bright color.  Fitz has pointed to my lips before and said, "That's RED!"  But, he hasn't done that in a long time.  However, when we got to court that morning, he had people laughing because he was pointing at my lips and saying, "RED".  I think he was telling me about my gift!!  When I saw the cookie cutter, I said, "Oh! Red lips!"  And he showed me:
I'm so thankful that I got to go with him, and we did have a great time together, but there is a funny background story.  My child is a stickler for routine.  I know I made him that way, and it's good in most cases, but sometimes it bites me.  Either my mom or John's dad picks up Fitz from preschool every time he has school.  That's just the way we've always done it.  So, one day a couple of weeks ago, mom got stuck in traffic on the interstate and I had to go get Fitz.  He saw me through the glass door, and started shaking his head "NO" and kicking his feet.  He was LIVID that I was picking him up when I had told him his Tootsie would be coming.  He screamed "NO" at me and kicked and thrashed the whole way out of the school and over to my office.  In front of all the other kids.  And parents.  And teachers.  I was mortified.  Do you hear me?  Mortified.
 
It wasn't that it hurt my feelings, so much, because it only stung a little.  I knew it wasn't personal, it was just that he thought Tootsie was coming, and I came instead.  But, I was so embarrassed!  I mean, how many 2 year olds get MAD when their mom picks them up from school??  I will admit, it made me cry.
 
So, while I was so excited about Munchies with Mom, I was kind of really scared that Fitz would be mad when I stayed at school with him, because that is not part of our normal routine.  Any time he thinks I talk too long when I drop him off, he interrupts me and says, "Bye bye, Mama!"  Like ok, time for you to go, this is my time.  So, I started telling him the night before that I was going to school WITH him.  I told him all the other Mamas would be there and it would be so much fun.  It worked.  Praise Jesus.  He got excited to see all the other moms, and for us to make our picture together.  He got super excited to give me the gift he made and showed me how he put his hand print on it.  It warmed my heart so much!
 
And I have learned:  if we are doing something out of routine, just give him some warning and he will be fine!  Whew!  Thank you God for giving me wisdom!  This parenting thing is tough sometimes, but the rewards are totally worth it.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

No fear

That was the theme of our weekend at the beach with Fitz.  The child has no fear.  No fear of jumping into the pool from anywhere on the side, deep or shallow...
 We arrived on Friday in time to have lunch at one of our favorites, The Shrimp Basket, picked up some groceries and head to the pool!  The water was super cold, but Fitz wanted to get in it anyway.  I didn't bring his puddle jumper from last year because he wouldn't wear it last year, and just wanted to stay on me the whole time.  Well, this year is a whole new world!  He wanted me to take him farther and farther into the water, and then wanted to jump out away from me in the pool!  It was scaring me to death!  Then, he got out and acted like he was just going to jump in!  Tootsie and I were terrified, so we didn't stay in the pool long, and we bought him a new floaty thing to try for the rest of the summer.  Whew!
 
We went to Lulu's for dinner Friday night, and Fitz LOVED the music!  Tootsie was clapping and nodding to the music and he joined right in.
Lulu's is always packed, and so they have a huge play area for children to play in while you wait.  We didn't have to wait long, so we let Fitz play after dinner, and he had so much fun!  He just watched the other kids and played along side them, grinning the whole time.


 He only stopped long enough to clap each time the music stopped, or to dance with the music.
He was excited to sleep with Tootsie at the condo, and only got out of the bed about three times to say, "Night night Mama! Night night with Caleb!"  (Anyone whose name he thinks he can not say, is Caleb!)  Funny boy.
 
We got up and out to the beach by 9 or so Saturday morning and once again, Fitz had no fear!


 He got excited every time a wave crashed at his feet, and pointed over and over for me to take him farther out "that way" into the ocean!  Even if a big wave came and got his hair wet, he went back for more.
 
He watched the water, and waved at every airplane or helicopter that flew over us.

 
The gulf coast got about 21 inches of rain just a couple of days before we got there, so there was water standing in weird areas all over the place down there.  There were two huge pools of water on the beach before we got to the ocean.  We set up our chairs in between the two pools, and it was perfect for Fitz to play in that water, and to fill up his buckets without going down to the water every time.

 
He alternated playing at the edge of the water, playing with his trucks and shovels, and snacking, all day long...exactly what you're supposed to do at the beach!

 
He told Tootsie to sit next to him on the sand...and of course, she did it, ha!

 And when he got tired, he just laid down right on the beach.
 The people next to us (who played perfect 80's music) had a Chinese boy and his mom with them.  They've only been in the US about a month, and didn't speak much English, but the little boy came to play with Fitz.  I wish I had taken a picture of Fitz's face when the mother was speaking Chinese to the little boy...priceless.
Mom took several pictures of me and Fitz playing in the water...but I only approved a couple for publication on the blog.
He lasted until about 3:00 and couldn't take it anymore.  He just had to take a little nap.


 We let him sleep about an hour, then packed up and went inside for the day.
What about this enormous bird?
 Fitz was not quite as happy at dinner that night because he was so tired, but look how cute he looked:


 We had breakfast at Duck's Diner while our laundry was washing and drying at the condo on Sunday morning, and it was delicious as always.  Fitz entertained us by winking at me while he ate.

We had so much fun, and Tootsie and I are SO glad our boy loves the beach as much as we do!  We hope Daddy and Uncle Zac can go with us next time!