Monday, November 24, 2008

The Season of Thankfulness

I was tired of the kids passing by Thanksgiving and focusing on what THEY want for Christmas. So in a first of its kind experiment for me I decided to teach them that Christmas was about giving, not receiving. I told them they each had to take money from their piggy bank and we would go to the toy store and they had to pick out something for each of their siblings. If they wanted something that was more than they could afford, they could team up with the extra sibling to get something for the third. In the meantime we could look for gifts for their cousins. Such a nice plan it was. In reality it fit into the category of what was I thinking? Emmanuel immediately took off with his own shopping cart, one he could barely see over, so he ran into everything not cemented to the ground and promptly found the car and truck aisle. He filled his shopping cart to the brim with every car and truck imaginable, the louder the better. Annie and Abegail hit the doll aisle and proceeded to tell each other what the other should buy for them. Perhaps you didn't get the point of what we were doing? We did manage to get our list checked off with only a few insults thrown my way and a healthy temper tantrum from a nameless little boy. Oh yea, these are definitely before pictures.
Social Security At Capacity
I had to go to the Social Security Office today. When I walked in I was immediately reminded of the passport office in Liberia. There was not a chair to be found. I heard a guy behind me say he had been waiting there for an hour and a half. In a rare occasion, I was one of the best dressed in the place. These were not people looking for retirement benefits, these were Moms and Dads and kids. Except they didn't have the African luxury of wearing flip flops and T-shirts. They had hats and winter coats. I remarked to the man I met with, Mr. Yosef, how busy they were. "Yes," he said, "everyone needs benefits, so many people are without jobs." Everyone should have the opportunity to sit at the office of Social Security for a while, to hear the crying babies, and smell the aroma of desperation, its a perspective much more tangible than watching the Dow drop.We are Thankful for Miss Laura
This is a picture of Emmanuel's teacher at his special school. She has been coming to our home to work with us since the summer. Ten minutes before this photo was taken you would never have thought Emmanuel would have ended her visit with a smile. E-man got mad today. Really mad, what they call BIG mad at Washburn. Big MAD at Mommy, throwing things and kicking. Miss Laura has seen more of E-man's Big MAD than anyone except Mommy and she is a rock, patient and gentle, but firm and supportive. We are hoping Emmanuel will not get BIG MAD when he is BIGGER and we will have Miss Laura to thank.

To a middle aged average woman in a parking lot
E: Can I see your spare tire??
Woman: I'm sorry???!!!
Mommy: No, he's absolutely fascinated by cars and wants to know if you carry an extra tire in your trunk.
Woman: Laughing, oh of course, I just never had anyone ask me that before.

Scott is off to Oklahoma with the kids tomorrow for Thanksgiving. Mommy has to work and is staying behind...stay tuned, good stories to come I'm sure.


Valerie said...

I laughed so hard at Eman's spare tire question. Tears rolling down my face! Love it!

Valerie said...

Okay, another funny - Akins says "who's that lady Eman sitting on"? I say "it's his teacher". He says "Why she's huge"? He sees the black chair and thinks that is all teacher!

The Googeg's said...

Oh-Oh shopping with children and BIG MAD! I could have written this post myself. Sorry you have to stay behind and work, but a little alone time sounds good to me about now.


FitMolly said...

That was a really great idea - taking your kids shopping to teach them about giving. Sorry it was stressful, but maybe next year it will go a little smoother. It could be a great tradition. :)

gretchen said...

Enjoy your alone time this week! I think your idea was brilliant-I think with kids it is all about repetition.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Nancy said...

I too cracked up when I read about Eman's asking the lady to see her spare tire. If he had asked me I would have thought he meant something to do with my waistline!
The shopping spree WAS a great idea, and I too, think repetition is a good idea. Just think, if you did it for birthdays too, you would just have two kids at a time, and would be focusing on just one gift. Hope Scott and the kids arrived safely in OK. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone reading this blog but especially to all the Richardsons!