- Bubbles are universally loved by children (okay, that observation was about every child).
- Samantha LOVES it when I'm her teacher. Dan and I volunteer in her class once a month, which helps because she has definitely had some serious separation anxiety. She was able to relax and enjoy all of VBS knowing I would be there. As we were walking in the second night she asked, "Mommy, are you going to play with me?" Oh, it's so sweet, and the best part is that she doesn't need to me to tend to her at all. It's just enough that I'm in the room.
- Samantha is starting to like kids! If you know her, you know that she has about a 4 foot personal space rule. She does not want children near her. She was standing at the top of a slide with another little girl, and instead of screaming she kindly patted the girl's back. I just happened to look over there at that moment, and I'm so glad I got that little snapshot into her development!
- VBS has this magically special quality, like what youth camp does for teens. The theme this week has been power, so each day we have emphasized what Jesus gives us power for. The 1st day was to be thankful, the 2nd day was to help others. Because I had the leader's guide for preschool, I was able to tell Timothy what to expect each day. And we would practice yelling "Aha!," which was also part of the curriculum. The last night (we only did 3 days) we were driving to church, and I had forgotten to tell Timothy what the lesson was about. My heart melted when he said, "Mom, what does Jesus give us the power to be tonight?" "...to be brave, my sweet son." Perfect love casts out fear, and it's really good for me to remember because I was also reminded this week that...
- My son has Sensory Processing Disorder. You wouldn't think I really have to be reminded, but sometimes it's way more obvious than others. Because this VBS material had a science theme, it was all about doing things with the senses that he doesn't typically have to do. Plus, there were many more transitions than in a normal Sunday School setting. My heart breaks for him sometimes that so many things that can be fun and enjoyable have to be scary and intimidating to him. He starts Kindergarten in 5 weeks, and it's not going to be easy.
July 30, 2008
July 25, 2008
July 24, 2008
July 23, 2008
July 21, 2008
We had a wonderful time in Dallas. On day 7, we drove 2 hours to where my Dad and Step mom live in East Texas. My parents live on a small lake, so we don't miss a chance to do a little fishin'! I have wonderful pictures of Timothy in the past, but this was Samantha's first time. Plus, Timothy got to break in his new Transformer fishing pole! They had so much fun! And even though Sam was very interested in fishing, she showed she's still a girl by not wanting to touch the worms at all!
July 17, 2008
July 16, 2008
July 14, 2008
So Day 6 was a "child-focused" day. They got CiCi's Pizza since we don't have it in San Diego.
Next we went to see Kung Fu Panda.
I enjoyed this movie, and the kids made it through great. Samantha has taken to this movie more than Timothy, even. She loves to carry her "Tigress" Happy Meal toy around everywhere. If you want to enter to win a Kung Fu Panda activity cd, go to Adventures of a Breastfeeding Mother. I took a pic of everyone before the movie began (adults are Dan, then my brother, then my mom)...
Then we went to Dallas World Aquarium, which is a neat place. Unfortunately, I didn't get very many good pictures at all this time (I have great pics from another visit). It's like a rain forest inside, and I think because of the Dallas June temps, it was a little like a sauna. I think it made all of us a bit agitated. Timothy was whiny, but Samantha was enthralled.
And I got a couple of good pics of the kids.
Now, strike a pose...
- How do I become a more truthful person?
- Whom do I know who can teach me to pray in a way that will nourish my soul?
- What practices will enable me to live in joy continually?
July 13, 2008
July 11, 2008
The good news was that neither of my kids fought me on it. I couldn't believe it! Sam does not like people or things to be near her at all. Just try it-you'll see. But as soon as she saw this (which totally covers up her adorable bathing suit, by the way), she was clamoring to get in it screaming, "I want to go SWIMMING!"
The time came to say good-bye to Zoe and Ben, and Timothy didn't like it. Thankfully, he now recognizes having to say good-bye instead of screaming no through it (that always caused awkward moments!) I think this trip taught Timothy about how much fun it is to see friends and how sad it is to say good-bye. If there's anything I've learned, though, and hope to teach him, it's that the sadness of the good-bye can't make us miss out on the joys. We have to experience life, even when it hurts. It will serve him well because he's turning out to be this crazy people person (who did he get THAT from?)
We headed up towards Ft. Worth to meet Dan's aunt and uncle who are delightful and in the spirit of our "detour traveling" we decided to go the Dinosaur Valley State Park in Glenrose, TX on the way. I grew up going to the Glen Rose Baptist Encampment so I had been to see the dino tracks years before. There are a couple of different spots to see tracks, but the easiest was this fairly wide river who's water level was pretty low. Here we are starting to cross:
This is looking down the length of the river. You can see where the river bends to the right.
On the way back both kids were feeling comfortable to climb "by myself". And as you can see it was pretty tame. The only times we really had to hold the kids tight were a few submerged rocks that were quite slick. About 2 feet before we made it back to the bank, Timothy slipped and got muddy/wet from his waist down. He wasn't hurt, but totally disgusted.
And the best thing was the water! Both here and at Josh and Sheila's pool! I think Sheila thought I was crazy because I asked, since we were going swimming around 6pm, if their community's pool was heated. "Um, no, it's 100 degrees here." And sure enough the pool water and river water were nice and cozy. What a different feeling than in San Diego! We consider a hot day 80 degrees, so our water (pool and especially ocean) stay FREEZING. I don't even know how the kids stand it sometimes. But in Texas, even I enjoyed it!
I loved all these "earthy" things we were doing. It was great to really enjoy God's creation. We ended up having a lovely dinner with Uncle James and Aunt Dana. Timothy was pumping himself up to see his grandparents, and in the midst of enjoying James' company called him "Grandpa". We all loved it!
End note: Do not ask me how, but I did not get pics of Sheila and me together or of Dan's aunt and uncle. I'm a bit heartbroken about it.
July 10, 2008
Timothy also pottied outside for the first time! This picture was taken right after he did it, and I seriously think he felt a little more grown up! I did take a picture of the actual act (behind that giant cactus right there), but I'll keep that embarrassment off of the world wide web!
On Day 3 we made it to our first stop to see people we love! We had a wonderful time with Josh, Sheila, Zoe, and Ben. Did I mention we had a wonderful time? It was so great! We went swimming that night at the coolest pool ever! The kids loved it so much we went again the next morning. I have pics, but I took those on Day 4...