Friday, August 24, 2018

You win some, you lose some

We've given the children several lectures about how Alexander learns things by watching us so we need to be setting a good example. Specifically, I've been nagging the squirmiest of my children about their behaviour during prayers because, in my opinion, Alexander should know how to get ready prayer at his age (the ripe old age of ten months old, you know) but so far he hasn't even tried because, well, he's probably a little confused about what we do during the prayer.

Do we fold our arms, bow our heads, and close our eyes while prayers are said? Or do we crawl around in circles, pick up toys and/or books to play with and/or read, and fidget, fidget, fidget?

Sometimes it's rather difficult to tell at our house, because even during our mealtime prayers, which typically last about thirty seconds, prayer time is chaos. Seriously, thirty seconds and there'll be silverware dancing in the air, plates flipping off the table, fingerfuls of food being sampled, children falling off their seats. All they'd need to do is start singing and it would be a scene to rival the kitchen scene in Disney's Beauty and the Beast.

Our constant reminders about setting a good example during prayer time finally seem to have taken hold, however, and the wriggliest of our bunch have begun making an effort to maintain a reverent mien during prayer time. And, this morning, finally, my sweet little baby looked around at his siblings all kneeling down with their arms folded and their heads bowed and did his best to mimic them, clasping his pudgy little arms against his chest.

Of course, Zoë was still in bed and Benjamin, who had been in the middle of breakfast when he was called for family prayer, sat at the bottom of the stairs rather than joining the rest of us upstairs, so Ander only had Rachel, Miriam, and Daddy to look at for an example (he was sitting on my lap so I'm exempt).

At any rate, it was incredibly adorable and we're definitely calling it a win!


Benjamin has been terribly anxious about packing school lunches this year. He started begging to "practice" weeks before the school year had even ended, but I put him off until the summer (when he definitely had the opportunity to fend for himself on multiple occasions).

When the first day of school rolled around, he was thrilled to pack a lunch in the fancy little bento boxes I'd ordered (a cheapo ten-pack) and tuck it into his lunch sac. He brought it home, took care of his leftovers, and proudly packed his second school lunch.

And we've yet to see his lunchbox again.

You guys! He lost his lunchbox on the second day of school! And it's just so typically Benjamin that I'm not even really mad about it. I just think it's hilarious.

That said, I'm going to be heading over to the school today to help him sift through items in the lost and found because we can't afford to be buying new lunch boxes every other day.


Last night I sang a few lullabies to Zoë, as I do every night. The rest of the children are down to one lullaby a piece (yes, I still sing a lullaby and give a back rub to all of my children every night (eleven years and going strong)) but Zoë still requires several. She'll give me a title (or first line) of a song and then say where she wants me to tickle/scratch her.

"Dare to Do Right. Mine tummy."

"Ducks on the Pond. Mine back."

"I Lived in Heaven. Mine armpits."

Yes, her armpits. My girls find tickles and back scratches enjoyable and all requested armpit tickles at that age. Benjamin has never requested tickles in his life and writhes in agony when I forget he doesn't like tickles and accidentally scratch his back instead of rubbing or patting it.

Anyway, last night I was singing I Lived in Heaven to Zoë when she blurted out, "Why'd you just sing my name?"

"I didn't sing your name..." I said, confused.

"Yes, you did!" she insisted. "You just said 'Zoë!'"

"No, I said, 'Father said he needed someone who had enough love to give his life so we...'"

"See!" she squealed. "You said it again! Zoë!"

It took me a minute more to realize she was hearing "Zoë" when I was singing "so we." I was unable to convince her that I wasn't actually saying her name so now this is "her song."

She can be a little self-centered (she is three years old, after all), but at least she's stopped singing "Zoë, Zoë, Zoë, Zoë, Zoë" whenever she plays at singing. Now she'll sing actual songs along with whatever everyone else is singing. If you hear a lilting,"ABCDEFG!" or someone belting "I AM A CHILD OF GOD!" during the sacrament hymn, just know that's my little girl singing her heart out.


At one point this morning I had thought of a title for this post that tied all these stories together well (at least in my head), but I forgot it. So now I don't know if they all make sense together, but here they are anyway!