Monday, February 20, 2017

A girl and her dog

I was putting laundry in and I overheard this conversation with Roslyn and Vortex.

Roslyn: "Vortex, there's a bugg-y on the slide"
Vortex: Listening
Roslyn; "I need him ta go away."
Vortex: Listening

There was a tiny little gnat floating around the slide. He moved on when I approached. Roslyn needed help, and the first person she turned to was her dog. Too bad vortex too afraid of Carter playing basketball by the slide to go help her.

Thursday, January 26, 2017


My brother is in the Philippines, serving a mission for our church. He is gone for 2 years. My kids love him. I miss him a lot. They miss him a lot.

Carter came home yesterday, very excited that there is a boy in his class that speaks Tagalog in his home. He had his friend teach him some phrases. He came home to write Uncle Jordan a letter. He needed to fill in the gaps, so he asked me to use Google Translate. He discovered that when he didn't know how to spell a word correctly - Google would offer him suggestions.

From what I know of Tagalog, things need to be conjugated and the word itself changes based on the context - so this probably doesn't make any sense. It is supposed to say:

“Dear Jordan.

You are fast. Do you have a Book of Mormon? What is your companion’s name? Do you have a temple there?

I love you,



I can’t make out the last two words under the date. He doesn’t remember. I Google Translated it myself and it reads “Expensive Kite”

I am mailing it off tomorrow. He is so proud of himself. I am proud of his effort.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017


Carter, Beckett, and Roslyn are growing so much. No matter how I try to bribe them, they just keep at it. Every time I mention that I want them to slow down, they start eating and sleeping more – and in turn, growing faster.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Lisa, where have you been?

Once upon a time – 3 years ago – the Lewis family purchased a new home. It had a basement. We got right to work making it our own. David put new flooring in, changed out the light fixtures and outlet covers, and started to update things one by one.

Then, a storm came. Mother Nature dumped almost an entire month’s worth of rain in one storm. The water came down so hard and so fast, our drainage system couldn’t handle it. It came under our foundation and back up into our floor. It washed away every inch of flooring David had put down, one year, to the weekend, ago. It even washed up most of the vinyl tiles that had been underneath. We had to rip out the sheet rock to avoid mold. 

David went a little overboard and decided to take the popcorn ceiling down in the media room and put up insulation to keep the noise contained.

David did most of the labor himself. We had the help of David’s family to move the big things out of the way and lend us tools; the missionaries from our church to help us tear out the wet floor and do a little painting; my mother to help us fix the problem so it doesn't happen again; and my father to help David get the truck fixed, take a load to the dump, and clean up the rest kids’ outdoor play area. After a year of work, and his entire vacations, we have it 99% finished. We need to caulk the trim, and finish the fire place.

We let the kids choose the colors of their playroom. They chose 10 different colors – all the colors of their favorite sports teams. David decided to use the remaining paint from the rest of the house and compromise. He painted their favoritest sports team’s logos on the wall, and purchased curtains for two others – the Steelers and the Falcons.

So, if you're wondering "Why hasn't Lisa updated her blog since last November?" Now you know why. I will be going back and filling in the gaps in between school work, house work, and teaching preschool.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Determined, Sure, Confident, Loving, Stern

Roslyn and I attended a baby shower over the summer. We sat next to this little old lady. We really enjoyed her company. She and Roslyn had some great conversations. Then food came out. Roslyn focused on nothing but getting my cookie! The woman made a comment that made me shudder. "She sure does love her food! Well, don't let her get used to that."

At what point did we start talking to BABIES about how to eat to protect their body image? When did it become okay to talk about limiting food for young girls? We have a body image problem in America. Boys and girls feel like they need to look like people who don't really exist -people who have been altered to such a state that it is not humanly possible to sustain life. 

Boys and girls starve their bodies of vital nutrients. They destroy their teeth. Their organs shut down. They die before our very eyes. They are our brothers and sisters, our aunts and uncles, our mothers and fathers.

I will not tell my daughter how beautiful she is, or how her clothes make her pretty. I tell her how great her determination is and how she will need it when she needs to do hard things. I tell her how wonderful it is that she is so sure of herself and what she wants. I tell her how her confidence makes her shine. I tell her how much I love her kisses. I tell her what a great job she does at taking care of her babies. I applaud her ability to stick to her guns, and not let anyone change her mind (even though that part makes it really hard to parent).

Saturday, October 31, 2015

New toilet

This chair was a gift from a friend while I was pregnant with Carter. I love it. It was in the nursery, and has migrated to the living room (It was no longer feasible to seclude myself in the bedroom to nurse, the boys needed supervision).

Last night, Carter got up in a full bladder frenzy. I watched him run, disoriented, out of his room. I knew he was on his way to the bathroom, and didn't think much of it. Until, he didn't come back. I went to check on him. He was crying on the couch that he didn't want me to send him back to bed. I checked his underwear, they were dry. I walked him to the bathroom - crying all the way. His bladder was empty, which I thought was odd.

I got David to try to calm him down, to no avail. I settled on cuddling with him in the living room until he fell asleep, woke up, or just calmed down. I decided I would sit in my glider/rocker. I found this:

His bladder was empty because he peed on the chair. In our attempt to save Carter's tablet, a book, and my Boppy pillow - Carter fell back asleep on the rug. David carried him back to bed while I rinsed the cushions in the tub. When I moved the chair, I found a very large puddle of urine  that had flowed all the way back. What a mess sleepy, disoriented boys can make!

Thursday, October 29, 2015


Someone has enough hair for pigtails!! During nap, one side came undone (I have to twist the baby bands about 27 times around to get it to hold, and even then, it is not tight enough). About 7 strands came out with it. There was no longer enough hair to make a pigtail. So, we won't be getting more pigtail pictures anytime soon.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

A girl has got to have her babies

Roslyn has discovered babies. She has these two dolls that she carries with her EVERYWHERE. I do not let them leave the car when we go out. It would be a tragedy if they were to get lost (as if there was a chance we could pry them out of her arms – but just in case). However, it is like pulling teeth to get those babies out of her arms when we extract her from her car seat. She begs and pleads – signing “please” frantically, over and over again. She HAS to have those babies.

We moved her to her convertible car seat today. I pulled out my camera and said “Let me take a picture real quick.” She instantly looked at me and stuck her tongue out! So much for her avoidance of the camera for the last 16 months!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


I remember growing up, seeing toddlers with runny noses. Their parents would chase them around with a tissue. There were fears, tears, and smears. It was just gross. I thought that children were beings with a strange attachment to their bodily secretions (why else would they hide and deny the smell coming from their diaper!!). That, and they had super sensitive skin – to be bothered by a harmless wipe of the face.

Although I never wanted to have the boogery kid, I knew that every child was that way and there was no sense in trying to be holier-than-thou about it.

One day as I watched a parent embark on a stealth mission to catch the stream of nastiness from nose to mouth to cheek, I realized why the child reacted as I would had a spider just jumped on my face. The parent pounced on the unsuspecting child with an old napkin. No warning was given, no option to acquiesce. They grabbed the first disposable tissue-like thing, and scraped as hard as they could to fight against the thrashing.

The more incidences I watched, the more I realized that the child was fighting, not to keep the boogers (although that is a real thing that happens in my house), but to keep from being violated. Later incidences were met with the same panic – even if warning was given. It wasn’t about the snot, it was about the lack of control the child had in regards to their body. There became a stigma on the entire act. ANY attempts to wipe their face brought back the trauma and fear they experienced when it was brought on them like the SWAT team invading their home in the middle of the night.

I vowed to always warn my children.

We have a code word. I’ll say “Nosey nosey” or “Nose Nose Nose”, my children stop and wait. I am gentle and quick. They even started blowing for me! Roslyn, prior to the age of 12 months, would blow her nose any time a tissue was placed in front of it – forcefully enough to be productive! Beckett is not as coordinated, but he tries. At two, he can blow his own nose. However, it is not his favorite thing to do. I’ll give him the option for me to wipe or for him to blow, and he will decline my services entirely – choosing instead to go into the bathroom and do it HIS SELF (Did I mention he’s 2?). Sometimes, he is even proactive about it.

Today, I sat down to use the toilet, unrolled the toilet paper, and found this:

He went in, blew or wiped his nose, and left. I have no idea how long this has been here. The important thing is – he was empowered to wipe his nose himself. He knew it was part of life. It wouldn’t hurt. There was no fear.

Parents, remember that our children are going to be adults someday. They have voices that need to be heard. They have likes and dislikes. When they throw a fit, they are trying to express a like or a dislike and don’t have words that fit into your understanding. They yearn to be understood. They long to be heard. Give them the chance. Take the time to sit and listen. They will form a relationship with you built around faith and trust. Isn’t that what you want when they’re teenagers and adults anyway?

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Roslyn Updates

Roslyn gave her doctor a good scare with her low weight at a year. She had many things stacked against her when it came to nursing. She has a severe under bight, a level three (out of four) upper frenulum tie, and delayed language. Due to the lack of support I received from the lactation consultants, none of it was caught until a year. By then, the damage had been done. In order to remedy some of the issues, I consulted her doctor, a pediatric dentist, and the lactation specialists. None of them recommended fixing it. They all said that we should just move on and try to make the best of it.

The doctor referred us to multiple specialists to try to fatten her up. I had her evaluated, and it was determined that her weight was not the problem – it was only a symptom of deeper issues. They found Roslyn was significantly delayed in speech and gross motor skills. She has one therapy session and two group sessions every week; in addition, her speech therapist comes every other week. She LOVES it. She loves all the ladies that she sees, and they are so friendly. She loves going to classes.

Roslyn is very strong willed, and her speech therapist has a very strong personality. They did not hit it off at first. Roslyn will not perform for her. The physical therapists have a different rapport. They follow Roslyn around and try to correct her movements to show her that she has more support when she holds her feet a certain way. She gains confidence as she succeeds with their help. However, the speech therapist is more of a leader in the relationship. She prompts Roslyn to make sounds or to hold her spoon a certain way. Roslyn DOES NOT like to be led. She likes to be the leader. At one of her sessions, she was holding her cup upside down (I’m not sure why she does that, but it is common). Her speech therapist tried to turn it. Roslyn lost it. She started crying. She wouldn’t cooperate any more. The appointment was effectively over. They have many run-ins like this. We have found that the dynamic is different when away from home, so we’ve been trying out different places to have her appointments.

This little girl is determined and tenacious. In her evaluation, I was asked to define her personality. I told them she was shy. I quickly learned that she is nowhere close to shy. She just displayed behaviors that mimicked shyness to express her disapproval. When she didn’t want anyone to come near her, she would tilt her head to the side and snuggle into my shoulder. That was her way of saying “No way Jose!” before she had better communication skills. She knows what she wants and she is not afraid to go for it. Now, she will tell you more forcefully to leave her alone or get her something.

On Sunday, Roslyn and Beckett were both going for the same toy. Beckett got their first and threw his double-Roslyn-sized body over the toy so she couldn’t get it. She crawled up on top of him, weaved her fingers in his hair, and began to pull. She pulled his head right up off the floor. He cried “uncle” for sure! She is not afraid to be pummeled by her older brothers.

This little girl sure is giving us a run for our money!