Sunday, August 15, 2010

Comment problems

Dear Friends:
We are having some problems witn our blog. It is sending us your comments to approve, but not letting us approve them. Sorry if you have posted recently and it is not up. We are working on it. Thanks for your feedback though. We appreciate your comments and hope to have this problem worked out soon.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Dessert Ninja

So this post is a little late, but is it ever too late to show off? Ever? ;) I made this killer fruit tart for my dad on Father's day. We had a bakery one at a seminary broadcast where he was kind enough to accompany me as my date back in November and he was wondering how someone could make one. I told him I was pretty sure I could do it and I'd make him one for Father's Day. So here it is. I even made it the fancy French way (read finicky, annoying, fall apart crust, real pastry cream, and apricot glaze to make it glisten. I love you dad and this is the proof.

Monday, July 26, 2010

The puppy has spawned much new material

Referring to the dog opening her mouth to receive a toy:
I like when she just opens it like she's a space station and there's a ship coming through.

More about the dog:
Beren: That sound she makes with her claws is really handy.
Mama: How so?
Beren: It tells you where she is and how fast she's going. "ticka, ticka, ticka = bullet train! Tick, tick, tick, means she's going slow.

"Mom! I kissed Pandy on the lips and she kissed me to at the exact same time! I'll never take a bath again!"

Our puppy was lying in the sun in a rare moment of quietude:
Mama: Wow, she's really floppy right now, but she can be feisty and frisky in the mornings.
Beren: Yeah. But lately she's been more frisk than feist, so that's good.

While hugging Pandora as she single-mindedly consumes her kibble:
Beren: Wow, there's nothing like a little food to take the edge off a dog!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Comments Now Restricted

The spammers finally got us on their list and now I get more posts in Chinese than from you loyal followers. Some might say that's because we only have like... 5 loyal followers, but I say... never mind about that. The spammers are now shut out. I will accept membership requests from anybody Heather or I have ever heard of or suspect we know either directly or via a mutual friend.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Mother's Day Reflections


The weekend before Mother's Day, we celebrated my son, Beren's, 7th birthday. I had lost my voice due to illness and was exhausted from caring for the new puppy he'd received as an early present, but decided to go ahead with the planned extended-family celebration. I'm glad I did. It was a wonderful day, for him and for us, but it left me completely wiped out and entirely mute.

When I entered Beren's room that evening bearing a laundry basket, I was seized with a tremendous coughing fit. When it finally passed, I collapsed onto his bed and groaned weakly. He solemnly pressed my hand between his sweaty palms and gazed intently at my face for a moment, then uttered one word: "Come."

I was too depleted to resist. I let him lead me into the hallway and through the door of my own bedroom where he pointed commandingly towards the bed. I didn't move. I knew that if I laid down in that bed I probably wouldn't be able to rise again any time soon. Beren must have sensed my hesitation because at that moment he marched towards me, wading through the sea of clothing I had strewn about the floor, and towed me firmly across the room. After stowing me (none to gently) beneath the covers, he flipped on the humidifier I had sitting on my night stand and crawled into bed next to me.

For a few moments we just laid there and cuddled, but then, the inevitable: . . ."Mom. Stay right here. Don't go anywhere. I have to go to the bathroom." I can't tell you how often this happens. If Beren Chritstopher Mowrer is ever elected president of the United States, I guarantee you that on the way to his swearing in, the entire motorcade if going to have to pull over and wait for the Commander-in-Chief to take a poo.

He was gone a long time (even for him) and when he finally came back he had a surprise. With no fanfare whatsoever, he slapped a dripping wet rag across my forehead and then stood back to behold my delight. "Uh . . . thanks," I sputtered, wondering which cartoon I had to thank for teaching him that little first aid technique. "You're welcome," he affirmed benevolently. I can also use the massager on you if you want." Without waiting to find out if "I want" or not, he scrambled over the side of the bed and fired it up.

Since I was lying on my back, Beren demonstrated great adaptability by massaging the palms of my hands on the highest setting for several minutes. When I could no longer stand the intense relaxation this produced in my nervous system, I tactfully suggested that perhaps I could turn over and let him work on my back. He agreed and soon the 10 pound massage wand was racing over my spine and shoulder blades like a stock car at the Indianapolis 500.

At some point in the midst of all this muscle therapy, I began to cough again. Beren quickly flipped off the massager and began pounding me heartily on the back like an enthusiastic life guard trying to save a drowning swimmer.

When I recovered from the coughing and its "cure," Beren draped his body across mine and intoned with great solemnity: "I ----- love----you." There was something funny about the way he said it and it took me a minute to figure out what it was. He wasn't just saying the words to be nice . . . he was applying them like one would administer ointment on a cut or the final stitch that seals the wound. Evidently he considered this a crucial part of my recovery. "And why not?" I mused. I certainly never neglected to include it when trying to heal him. "Let me know if you need more snuggling," he directed. I held out my arms to indicate that I did.

I keep a flashlight by my bed for reading and a few minutes later it caught Beren's attention. He repositioned the wet rag over my eyes (creating many new rivulets that ran down my neck and pooled in my hair) and began shining it at various angles into my face, asking each time, "Can you see the light now?" I was pretty sure we were done with "tenderness" now that his mind had taken a scientific turn, but I was wrong.

After determining that I could indeed see the light if he shoved it practically up my nose, Beren finally turned it off and asked me a question: "Mom, have you ever read a book, seen a movie, or played a video game about the original Star Wars?" "Yes," I croaked. He brightened, "Want me to read to you about it?" I nodded.

He dashed from the room and returned clutching a blue book with a tattered binding. "You're gonna love this," he promised. After courteously fluffing my pillow for me he began: "Long ago and far, far away, there was an evil empire . . . "

He was right. I did love it. I loved all of it. My bruised ribs, the damp pillow, the hum of the humidifier, and the age old battle of good an evil being played out in my son's childish voice next to my ear. Heck! I even loved the dang puppy who piddles on my floor and keeps eating my rug every chance she gets. It's part of the whole glorious, untidy, maddening, wonderful package that is motherhood.

You can't pick which pieces you'll get and which you'll leave out. There are as many ways to celebrate mothers as there are stars in the sky. None of them is wrong. But I'd like to suggest that sometimes the celebrations come when you least expect them (and some times they feel like a punishment). But try not to miss them. The same circumstances that create one perfect moment with your child will never come together in exactly the same way again.

Recently, I saw a framed poem in a thrift store by Ruth Hulburt Hamilton that I can't seem to forget. I'm going to leave an excerpt of it with you as my final thought for Mother's Day 2010.

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
for children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I Don't Speak Chinese

So please stop posting in it!

(Also, my parts are the size mother nature intended.)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Berenisms part 347

Things I never thought my six year old would say
"Daddy, will you help me get a wife?"
(I found out later that he meant to acquire one in a video game he and my husband were both playing. It was a game about farming and the farmers have to find wives to help them on their farm if they are to progress to the next level)

Questions, Questions,Questions . . .When he was 3 Beren asked me questions I could answer, like "Why does he grass grow back when we cut it?" and "How come kitty has fur and we don't?" Now that he is 6 I get things like this questions which he laid on me this morning in the car:
"Mom, what is the difference between FedEx Ground, FedEx, and FedEx Kinkos?"

Monday, March 8, 2010

Beren Vocabulary

My intent wasn't for this blog to be exclusively about Beren, but I have no choice but to give you yet another Beren update. He is using words like debris and original (et cetera) correctly in sentences without prompting. I don't even use the word debris. Let alone correctly.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Captain "Beroni" and the Title of Liberty!

Beren was gravely disappointed that he is still not old enough (you have to be 8) to qualify for Eric's company's "Take you child to work" day. To soothe his feelings I told him he could go to work (seminary) with me some morning if he wantd to. He loved the idea, and didn't even mind getting up early.
Natually, I enlisted him for help with the lesson. He was brilliant! It gave me a faint hope that I may someday be watching him perform in plays instead of competing in chess club. (My genes have got to be in there somewhere, right?)
Anyway, here he is in the head-lining role of "Captain Moroni." He acted out the whole story while the class listened to it on a tape.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

School Berenisms

The Human Abacus
After 2 weeks of Beren finishing his math homework in under 2 minutes, I suggested to his teacher that he was ready for something a little more challenging.
When confronted with the much larger numbers, Beren looked at me in consternation. "How am I going to solve that?!" he demanded. "The most I can do is 20."
Whereupon he promptly whipped off his socks and planted his bare toes on the lip of the kitchen table, presumably to have all the necessary calculating tools to hand.

The Sins of Others
From our conversation the previous day I knew that Beren wasn't overly fond of the substitute who was covering for his sick teacher. When he came home from school on the second day I asked,
"How was is today?"
"About the same," he responded.
Then after climbing onto my lap for some snuggles,
"She's so . . . . . fierce.
She's fierce and I don't like it. I'm not even the problem. It's the other kids in my class. They're the problem. I'm trying to be part of the solution!"