July 14, 2009

The Decision

Dominic and I have decided to put Julian in preschool this fall. I had originally planned to homeschool him, but I'm pretty sure I would fail miserably. At least right now. There's still a very good chance that I will homeschool in the future, but with Melody so young and needy, my current inability to have a remotely clean house, and the fact that Julian actually cries when I tell him that he will stay home for school and I'll be his teacher, we've realized it's in everybody's best interest if Julian starts at a part- time preschool.

Now I am frantically researching every preschool in the area! I don't know how I'll be able to make this kind of decision. I'm horrified of picking a school that he doesn't like, or that doesn't have good, kind teachers. I am glad he'll be around other kids his age on a regular basis. I think he needs that. I know he wants it. And there's a chance I may even get my house clean!

But he's my first! And I'm so sad that he's growing up! I wish I could stop him! If I would keep him at home it would be easier for me to ignore the fact that he's getting so big. But actually taking him to a school and dropping him off...I'll lose it. There's no way I'll get through this without losing it. I'll know to wear waterproof mascara that day.

And here's my biggest worry: what if the other kids are mean to him? That is something I absolutely cannot handle. He is so incredibly sensitive, and I don't know how to be strong for him. He doesn't have any really close friends right now. There are some kids he likes that are his age, but when they get together he is sort of dismissed by them. They aren't as interested in him as he is in them. And it breaks my heart! I just want to keep him in a bubble. And I've tried. But he doens't want to be in a bubble. He wants to be out there with the other kids. Oh Lord I'm going to need Your strength through this. I need to know if this affects other moms as badly. I'm sitting here just crying. I don't know how to let him grow up.

July 04, 2009

The Fuzzy Pink Flip Flops

Yesterday we took a family trip to the Columbus Zoo. They were having a promotion this week allowing military families to visit for free! The weather was very nice; not too hot, not too sunny, but warm and breezy with some clouds. Perfect zoo weather. We all had fun except for Melody, but she's not been having much fun with anything recently. We did, however, hit a very unexpected bump in our trip.

Being the disorganized mom that I am, I forgot something. It wasn't something normal, like a diaper or the camera. I forgot...my shoes. Dominic loaded the kids in the car before we left and I was responsible for getting everything else, which took a few trips (books, snacks, diapers, money, hats, sunblock, bug spray, and Melody's shoes). I remembered that I needed shoes, and while I was upstairs I grabbed my socks because I was planning on wear my Converse. Why didn't I just wear my flip flops? I don't know. But over the course of my trips to the car I forgot to grab my shoes. I had planned to put my shoes on in the car, but Dominic surprised me by being in the passenger seat, so I drove us to the gas station. Melody was throwing a fit so I crawled in the back and soothed her to sleep, forgetting all about my shoes.

We live about an hour and 20 minutes away from the Columbus Zoo. We drove and parked (very far away from the entrance because it was pretty packed). I immediately remembered that I had no shoes. I froze. I had no idea what to do. How can I be at the zoo, over an hour away from home, and have no shoes?? The kids were getting antsy and Julian knew that we were here. I searched the car for anything I could make into a shoe, but had no luck! I put on my white socks, but I was wearing capri pants so it was pretty hard to hide the fact that I wasn't wearing shoes. We got out and began the long walk to the entrance, in my socks. We planned to try and find some shoes in the gift shop if we could get into the zoo. The lines for tickets were very long. We stood out there for at least 20 minutes waiting to get tickets. I tried to hide my feet under the stroller. Then I saw it. A big sign with the zoo rules, one of which being that shoes must be worn at all times. I panicked. I could not load the kids up again in the car. They'd freak out. I could not go by myself all the way back to the car and try to find somewhere to buy shoes and then come back and find my family because we only had one cell phone. I didn't know what to do. So I just stood there in line, panicking and nervous and feeling completely stupid. We tried to come up with stories to tell the zoo workers if somebody stopped me, but ultimately we decided that the truth would be the best idea. I was really worried that we wouldn't be able to find any shoes. We finally got our tickets and then tried to hurry our way in. Nobody said anything about my feet. We made a bee-line for the gift shop and to my horror all we could find were children's crocs. The biggest was a size 12 and it wouldn't fit on my foot (not to mention that I hate crocs)! I was upset, and I stayed there while Dominic went off to look a little more thoroughly. Then he appeared with some fuzzy pink flip flops! In adult sizes! So I happily bought them and wore them all day :)

Here are the shoes that saved the day:

The day was fairly uneventful after we found some shoes. It was very crowded, so the cooler exhibits (like the aquarium, reptiles, and tide pools) were too crowded to really enjoy (especially with a stroller). Melody yelled at random people most of the day. Julian had fun, and I wore my cute sun hat. Dominic stayed calm and collected even when I got irritated and wanted to yell at everyone. He's been doing that a lot lately :)
Here are some pictures of our day: