Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Clean your ROOM! :)

I'm posing a question that EVERY momma asks from time to time.  How in the world can two beings born of the same genes, raised the same way, be so completely TOTALLY opposite??

I love being a momma.  Gosh, its the best.  And since the whining has ALREADY commenced and likely to continue for the next 10-plus years, I don't know how I'm going to let them grow up and leave me.  Can't even begin to imagine what I will do with myself.

That said....Being a momma can drive you crazy!

Meet Sam.  He is his Daddy's child.  Quiet, Calm, doesn't let much get to him....but WHEN it does?  Katie bar the door..... 

Sam makes good grades, is a loyal and dedicated member of every group he is a part of, loves sports, eats baseball, sleeps football and not only LOVES the Lord...but LIVES the Lord.  Between sports, church, school and his part-time job, he is on the go constantly.  Like his dad, he can go on little sleep and has more energy than I've ever thought a kid could. 

Sam has a heart the size of Texas.  And he puts his heart into EVERYTHING he does.  He is a softie.  Not afraid to cry to his mom when he needs a friend.  I love that.  He is honest.  Even when he knows that telling a little fib might be easier on him!  I've seen his heart broken over loss of a friend, a momma with cancer, losing a semi-final game on the baseball field, and even girls.  He posted a tweet recently, "The only two things that can break your heart are baseball and women!"  :)  Yep.  Women are the devil, son.  :)  I pity the young lady that wants to marry him someday.....I'm undoubtedly going to be one of "those" in-laws.  Sigh. 

Just can't help it.  I love my Sam.  What can you NOT love about a self-proclaimed "momma's boy"???   :)  He loves....and loves hard. 

Well...I'll tell ya. 
He is a SLOB!  I can't get him to clean his room.  Or pick up the bathroom after himself.  I refuse to ride in his truck.  And despite my threats, fits, and everything but bodily harm....that's just the way it is.  He won't clean his room.  The problem?  Is that I find it hard to get mad at him.  He is just so darn sweet, respectful, and an overall joy to be around.  When I ask him to mow the yard?  Sure mom.  Done.  When I ask him to run an errand for me?  Yep....Just send me a list.  When I ask him to load the dishwasher?  One time....done.  But to clean his room?  Not gonna happen. 

I've got friends that tell me that I should be grateful that at 17, "that's all" I have to complain about.  Are they right?  The kid wakes up in a new world every ten minutes.  Makes me nuts.

On to the lovely Sydney Clare.  Sydney?  is MY child.  My mom is giggling to herself in heaven that just as she predicted....I had one just like me in temperament.  A hot head.  "My way or the highway."  It's Sydney's world, and she just lets us live in it.  :)  If given only one word to describe her?  Loud.  And mornings with her are misery.  The kid could sleep all day and still be a bear when she wakes up.  I say all of this lovingly, of course.  Of course, like every teenage girl, her room gets out of sorts.  But after a day or 2, it drives HER crazy.  She is my organized one.  My rule-follower.  And you can bet, she is the one who lets me know of everyone in her life NOT following the rules.  Green.  Innocent.  I love it. 

She, too, is a Christ-follower and is like a sponge learning and serving the Lord.  She doesn't buy into typical girl-drama.....and keeps a safe distance from those who do.  Let me tell ya....girls are mean!!  :)  Sydney knows that by doing the right thing might mean she is standing alone....but is completely ok with that.  The downside....is don't be surprised if she isn't pointing out what YOU should or should not be doing.  But...I'll take it.  Much better than the reverse.  When I need one of them to remind me of something....or to handle something important for me....Sydney never lets me down.  Responsible.  Dependable.  My walking "day planner" for sure.

Sydney is precious.  Respectful to all of those around her....except momma.  :)  Her favorite ummmmm....word....is UGGGGHHHHHH!!!!  Usually accompanied by the slam of a door, or stomp of a foot.  Sometimes, I look at her and think...."Oh my goodness....Its me.  Its Terri."....

Don't get me wrong.  She loves her momma.  And shows it.  Everyday, I am told she loves me no less that 5 times a day.  When she leaves in the morning, when she gets to school, before she heads to sleep.....I know I'm loved.  But....when momma doesn't ALWAYS do exactly what Sydney wants, when Sydney wants it???  Drama....Fits.   The whole she-bang.  In all honesty, she is well-behaved.  Never an ounce of issues.  Grades are great, friends are precious, she always tells me the truth.  I don't worry about her going down a wrong path or making a bad choice.  But its EASY to get mad at her....she is JUST LIKE ME!  :)

These creatures are so special to me.  And I thank the Lord everyday for blessing me, even when most days I'm convinced I'm screwing it up.  :)  We mommas HAVE to stick together.  And help each other out.  We are raising our children in a world where doing the right thing isn't always the norm.  I want them to steer VERY clear of the mistakes I've been guilty of making myself.  I would never judge another, because we are all in this together, just trying to get it right. 

My friends are right....if a messy bedroom and a smarty pants mouth are the most of my problems with my children, then I should rejoice.  And I do. They are wonderful in spite of me and I am so blessed that God chose ME to mother them. 

I've only got a year left with Sam before he makes his journey to college and out into the world.  (Hope he knows its ok to come back home!  hehe) And just three short years with Syd.  I've GOT to get busy, time is running out!  They have faced so many things in their lives....death, divorce, financial struggles, illness, and disappointment at the hands of others.  These issues many of their peers have never encountered.  They have done it with grace.  And courage.  And respect.  And not once.....EVER.....can anyone refer to ours as a "broken home."  They are strong.....and they have never turned their eyes anywhere but to the Lord. 

I know in my heart....they will be ok.  They will be just fine.  I just hope I will be......

"When You called me to be a Mother, You didn't ask for perfection...But that with every breath, I would point them to You." Matthew 6:33

I love them to death....but if the darn kid doesn't clean his room, I'm gonna kill him!  :)

In Him,

PS...I get asked often about my health, and I'm still doing great and getting stronger everyday!  Digging in to my kiddos' activities by being a mom and burning the candle at both ends!  Starting week 6 of my diet and to date have lost 18 lbs!  Go me!  Dieting stinks.  I want a donut and cheese dip...and in that order!  :)  My next oncology appointment is not until August.  Emotionally, I still have those moments of worry but I've actually had a day or 2 lately where I don't think I even thought about cancer!  <3  God is good....All the time!  <3

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Mother's Day 2014: "I get it, Momma!" :)

Hi Momma!

Its May, again.  May has always been a big ole month around our house.  Several of the important milestones in my life were celebrated in May....ones that used to give me...me/US....such joy! May housed the wonderful dates of Mother's Day....AND your birthday!  Funny, how it was SUPPOSED to be all about you....but you always made it all about us.  I get it now.  :)  You always said I would.....

May also held my wedding.  While the marriage didn't last....the mutual respect is there, mom.  We co-parent fabulously. We have a relationship and a love....while not a romantic love....a love that still remains.  I realize how blessed I am to have that kind a relationship with a former spouse.  John steps up.  You would still be very proud of him.  I know its hard on him living away from these wonderful creatures.  He thinks I'm a good momma.  And that is important to me.  I know you are proud of that also.  We are friends.  And that is cool.

My wedding is probably one of my fondest memories of YOU.  We planned everything together down to every last detail.  I loved that day.

Even my high school graduation was in May.....again, you were there as you always were...supporting my every move.  I never doubted for a minute your pride and love for me.  I never scanned an audience that I didn't see you there.  Ever.  Thank you, mom.  I now know how hard that is sometimes.  What sacrifices you made for us.....that at the time didn't FEEL like sacrifices.  I love being there for my kiddos.  Love supporting them.  Love being their biggest fans.  Again....like you said I would....I get it!  :)

Gosh...we were skinny then!  lol  Which brings me to...I'm dieting, AGAIN.  I remember as a teenager, being all of 90 lbs. soaking wet, and you and Aunt Tootie would always tell me that one day I would get the "Cox behind."  Well...I GOT that, too.  C'mon now, joke is over.  Help me out here, will ya?  I'm having to steer away from donuts and cheese dip.  And you know how hard that is for me.  Down 14 pounds.  Yay me!  :)

Mom, since you have moved on to Heaven....I must admit that I've dreaded the month of May every year.  I also remember it was May that you called us in on that fateful day and told us that you were....in fact....terminal.  That the doctor had confirmed that there was nothing more "medically" that they could do to help you.  That your earthly life was nearing the end and that you need to prepare yourself and your family.  You were to "get your affairs in order".....that the end was near.  We cried together that day.  We prayed together that day.  It changed my life.  Forever.  I didn't agree with your decision to stop treatment.  I didn't want to give up.  I didn't want to let go.  But, as your daughter, as a fellow Survivor, and now...a fellow sister in Christ....I get it, Mom.  I get it.

Noone forgets our fight, momma....See?

You insisted on that little trip to Branson.  With just us.  I remember riding in the backseat with you and visiting all the way.  Funny, how I remember that you told me my teeth were so pretty and white.  Isn't it crazy that I remember something like that?  I constantly stare at my teeth and remember you.....stupid I know.  On that trip, you were wearing down.  The muscles in your legs were beginning to deteriorate and you struggled some.  We still managed to shop, a little.  You bought Sydney a little outfit.  Pink t-shirt and little pink flowered capri pants....from the Carter's outlet at Tangier. 

I remember that because it is the last outfit you purchased for her.  Since that time....every time I clean her drawers and closet.....going through her clothes to donate, consign, etc....I set them aside.  I then place it neatly back in her bottom drawer.  They have gone through each season for almost 13 years, and I just can't part with them. 

You also took us to the Dixie Stampede.  You bought the kiddos both of one of those beautiful stick horses.  The last toy you bought them.  Both have theirs in their rooms.  Their "mamaw horses"......

Here you didn't feel well....you were wearing that wig you hated....but you pressed on and gave us the gift of a weekend FULL of memories with you that we carry with us forever.  I plan to take them to Dixie Stampede, soon.  Very soon. 

I make sure they know how much you love them.  As I look around the ballpark at the proud mamaws and grannys that never miss a game or a performance.....I think of you.  I know you are there, too.  I know that when Syd asks me for about $20 each ballgame for the concession stand, and I have to tell her "no"....that you would slide her a few bucks when I wasn't looking.  :) You would be THAT lady who yelled like a fool when they did something good....and it would be NO secret which kid was "yours."  :)  Complete with "Sydney Clare's Mamaw" or "I love #4" on your back.  No doubt.  That would be you.

I know you would keep the road hot between Newport and Benton.....and I'd have to get a better mattress for the guest room for you.  :)  I'd probably be a much better cook because I'm finally willing to learn!  My kiddos' events and special days would be much more "grand" and "special" because YOU were that person that made them that way.  What in the WORLD am I gonna do when she gets married??????

I wish I'd have let you teach me a couple of little things like hemming pants, and sewing on buttons....haha.  HOWEVER....you'd be proud of the few things I've learned to do as a "dance mom"....I can "stone" and "bedazzle" with the best!  :)

I've drifted a little...reminiscing of you and what a presence you were in our lives.  But back to my point....Since we lost you, I've always dreaded May.  Gloomy, depressed, even grumpy.  Not this year.  I have a peace.  I'm actually excited about Mother's Day.  Yes.....I do miss you.  I miss being able to celebrate WITH you.  But, I am excited that my children get to celebrate me....and together we can celebrate you.

They are perfect.  If I didn't do anything right in the world....I've definitely made TWO beautiful contributions to it with Sam and Syd.  They are my best friends.  Together, we have so much fun! I've always got one or the other....or one AND the other piled up in the bed for TV time.  Its perfect. 

To update ya on them....Syd is our new Pepstepper!  I'm sure you already knew that.....though.  She is loving it and so far on Cloud 9 that I bet you can reach down and touch her!  :)

Aren't they just BEAUTIFUL?  They truly are, inside and out.  And guess what?????   Both kiddos will both be "doing their thang" at the SAME place, on the SAME night this year!  I know that YOU know how awesome that is!

I can't believe her Junior High years are about to come to an end.  You would be so proud of her.  She and I are such buddies and we share laughs day after day.  She has my "prissy attitude" and unfortunately, my smarty-pants mouth.  But its ok....As you know, I've had YEARS more practice!  :)
In all seriousness, she is precious.  Responsible, loving and a true joy to be around. 

In a recent email from her Jr. High Dance Coach...
"She has been such a joy to coach. You should be so proud of her. She has been such a leader for our team I hate to lose her. It is rare that you see a young girl with such a positive attitude all the time that is so eager to help and build her teammates up. I wish her all the best!​ She is such a sweet girl I will miss her so much. "
Can't beat that!  I love my Syd. <3  

Sambo's "spirit" is struggling a bit with baseball this year....due to some circumstances beyond his control....BUT, you would never know it.  Never complains.  And I mean, Ever.  Always the first one to cheer on his teammates....and I don't care if he IS my son....I will tell anyone -- by far one of the best attitudes on the field...and off.  That is worth his weight in gold, Mom.  For that?  I'm proud.  I wish I could share his outlook through adversity.  I learn from him daily. He is honest and kind.  ALMOST....to a fault.  I am blessed.
Here are a few pics from "Panther Family Day"...

Here's our Panther...

I love, love, LOVE this pic.  In HIS favorite place....with his #1 Fan.  I will forever cherish these moments. <3

Supportin our boy....Me and my "Diamond Doll"  :)

Here are the Juniors.  Can you believe our little Cubs grew up?????

Seems like just yesterday....Remember this, momma?

He's always been a Panther....:)

His team is top in the conference (Even beat Bryant once! :)) and are currently set to be #1 seed at State in a couple of weeks.  The Championship will be played at Baum, Home of the "Diamond-Backs" and would be a dream for Sam.  His coach says the goal is "always to win the last game."  So that....is Sam's dream, also.  A win would mean that he got a "State Ring" before his sister.  A fear of his that is VERY real.  And valid!  :)

If I could get him to clean his darn room and fold and put away his laundry...he'd be close to perfect!  :)  Like you said I would...I get it!  :)  One thing....if you have any pull with the "Big Guy"....he could sure use some help with his ACT score!  hehe  Seriously, college talk gives me hives and makes me wanna throw up.  So that's all I have to say about that right now.  How did you let us go?  I get that too, unfortunately.  :(

They will be leaving to go on Choir Tour with Pure Energy in a few weeks.  We are SOOOOO blessed that they have the opportunity to be a part of something so special.  They are visiting places I've never been....and seeing parts of the country that I would never be able to take them.  They are leading worship and touching those in ways I could never imagine.  This year they are going to Colorado.  Even will lead the National Anthem on the field of a Rockies Game!  How cool is that??

Here is sneak peak....Pure Energy '14.  Aren't they incredible???

What I love most about them is they really are best friends.  They support each other.  I know that now matter what my future holds.....They will always have each other.  ...

Their support of each other is certainly the rule and not the exception.  This just makes my heart full of joy!

They are growin' up on me, Momma.  I'm doing my best to cherish every cotton-pickin' moment!

Here are a few Easter pics....

No, she is not QUITE taller than him...yet.  In Sam's words, "Mom, those shoes make her 6 feet TALL!"  :)  She sure doesn't get that from us!  :)  Oh, to have those legs.....

Had to throw one in of my David.  I've already told you all about him and I've told him all about you.  And SOOO wish he would have gotten to know and love you like we do.  I'm sure you know all too well that God had a hand in this.  I love him.  And more importantly, Mom....He loves ME!  <3

Ok...a couple more. :) We are dorks and love photo booths!  Here are couple....

See, Mom?  He lets me be "me."  Many have tried to change me.  And many have failed.  I've hit the jackpot!  :)  Ding.Ding.Ding.  <3

I had the BEST role model in you as a Mom.  But darn it! I don't hold a candle to you!  :)  I am an alarm clock, short-order cook, maid, waitress, teacher, nurse, referee, handyman, artist, security officer, private investigator, photographer, counselor, chauffer, demerit-saver, event planner, hairdresser, personal assistant, an ATM, and I occasionally even have to scare away the boogie man.  I'm on call 24-7 and don't get holidays off.  I'm a mom.  I LOVE it!  And...just like YOU said I would.....I get it. :)

I do have moments.  "Woe is me" moments.  But you left behind such a Village.  I reach out to Judy when I REALLY need a dose of "you"....She is the closest thing left on earth to you.  I have Jay, and Dad, and of course, Tootie and Chuck have adopted us and loves us through all of our mistakes and victories like "only a mother could"  haha.  It protects me.  It restores me....and gives me love.  Jay is still the epitome of the perfect husband and father.  Jacob and Hannah are precious, and are the apple of Aunt Terri's eye!  He and Leah are raising them in a loving, Christian home.  Just like you taught us!  I am going to see Mamaw soon....She misses Papaw and you....so very much.  As we all do.  But knowing we will meet again...brings a peace and a hope that lets us go on.  You're still with us....And I see all the little ways you let us know that.  I get it, Mom.

Things in my life are falling into place.  Loose ends are being tied.  I'm happy, Momma.  I'm really, really happy.

I strive to live every day by some of the last words you said to me.  "To 'Let go and Let God' handle my needs and priorities. And to continue raising my children in the company of Christian friends."  You are right.  He provides ALL of our needs, and most of our wants.  Yep, again....I get it.

This is how I remember you most....Smiling and silly. You made my childhood special.  You instilled in me how to love and give ALL of myself to my children.  I try, Mom.  I sure hope you would be proud.  Being a mom has truly completed me as a person here on earth.  It is such a gift.  They have brought such joy into my life.  Through them, I've met the best of friends and found joy in the simplest of things.  I just love it.  There really is no greater love than a mother's love.  You always told us that....And....I get it.

I've been told there is a bit of resemblance.  :))  I take it as a compliment in the highest form.  <3

Happy Mother's Day, momma...to US!  I miss you more every day.  Oh, And Happy Early Birthday.  I won't even tell everyone that you're turning 62!  Old lady!  :)  I love you, momma. And I promise you....I really DO get it! <3


PS....I couldn't help but read back through some old posts and found a couple where I shared "you".....Thought I'd tag them again.  They make me smile.  <3