Friday, June 4, 2010

This and That and the Other Thing--and a Confession

So, how are we doing on our summer list?
Unlike Phineas and Ferb (whom I totally adore!), we only have 81 days of summer vacation, so we have a lot to cram in and quickly. 
Cold Stone--check.  That was a reward for memorizing a quote--little kids had one, big boys had one. 
Southwest Museum--check. 
Today was free doughnut day at Krispy Kreme--check.  Good thing Micah had such a good report card, too.  We got an even dozen.  Can I tell you how much I respect KK as a business?  That is a cool thing to give free doughnuts for every A on the report card.  Patronize them.  I know a dozen is expensive.  But they're actually rewarding the top students for what?  Being the best.  Imagine that.

And how did no sugar for the month of June fit in with a visit to Krispy Kreme, you may ask?  Ask away.  I have nothing to hide.  Lily was extolling her first doughnut with comments like, "This is the best thing I've ever eaten in my entire life."  And then, in a fit of generosity, she offered me one.  Which I refused, thank you very much.  "No, Mom, really, just a glazed one."  (just a glazed one?  Doesn't she know that a glazed Krispy Kreme is like crack cocaine to me?) Nope.  I told the kids that I wasn't eating sugar, and Hyrum piped in from the back seat, with his lisp and stutter: "But Mommy, s-s-su-sugar is AWESOME!" I'm still sugar-free, even if it is awesome.  I was asked what some of my strategies are for scaring off the monkey.  Well, I try to tell as many people as I can so they keep me honest.  Really. That helps.  I also suck sugar-free Altoids.  Whoa, are they strong. Not only are they strong, but they make my tongue a little sore so I don't want to eat as much.  I also splurge on sugar-free popsicles, and I just found Skinny Cow has sugar-free ice cream sandwiches.  They're not too bad, really.  Plus, I really like butter.  So I make a lot of homemade super-buttery toast.  Maybe that's defeating the purpose, but it makes me feel less deprived, so if you find some indulgence you can actually enjoy in moderation, like one slice of toast,  . . . then I say do it.

Twelve days.  That's all he's got left here at home. We went through his stuff a little this week and made a list of what he needs.  I am going to miss this kid.  He brings so much excitement and happiness to our family.

I've found that focusing our summer on the kids has been really positive for them.  They are happier, they fight less and watch TV less, they play and interact and laugh more.  The only downside is that my stuff is all getting thrown by the wayside.  My hip hurt a little after I rode the bike twice, so I'm resting until tomorrow morning to see if it was the bike.  So no exercise.  I haven't been as regular as I should with my personal goals and my personal time--even showering has become scarcer.  My goal for this next week is to find the happy medium between their stuff and keeping my cup full enough that I can keep up with them.  That's hard as the mom, don't you think?

Evie sporting one of her new bibs from Grandma T

And now for the confession.  On Tuesday, my cell phone fell out of the Suburban while I was picking Lily up from Musical Theatre Workshop, and I didn't even know until the college called and told me.  So Wednesday afternoon, I threw Evie in the car and we drove to Mesa Community College.  I got out at the security office, got my phone, got back in the car, drove around to the music building, got out and searched for Lily and came back to the car.  That entire time I forgot Eve was even in the car.  It makes me sick to even admit it here.  I was in the security office maybe five minutes, a drive of less than two minutes,  then in the music building for maybe eight.  I can't believe I forgot about her.  She'd fallen asleep and didn't make a sound.  I know you may think that I'm overreacting a touch, but to leave your baby alone in a vehicle in an Arizona summer for more than 15-20 minutes can be fatal.  It happens to someone about once every summer.  And I used to think, "How could they do such a thing--forget their baby's in the car?"  Now I know.  When I got her out of her carseat at Gilbert High School where we were dropping Lily off, I felt her back and she wasn't even sweaty.  So she was never in any danger.  This time.  I'm devising a way to remind myself when she's in the car alone with me.  Maybe a piece of tape on the steering wheel.  Something.
I think this time was one of those inspired warnings that we sometimes get as moms.  I could never forgive myself from something like that.

And with that, have a safe weekend.

Stay tuned for a fun giveaway on Monday.



  1. Wow Jen! You are such a good mom. My heart goes out to you with Tuck leaving. I can't imagine...or don't want to imagine that day for me.

    My heart almost stopped when I though of you leaving Evie in the car. Like you said, you hear of that once or twice a year... That's another thing I can hardly to live with such a mistake. I am so glad you remembered before it was a problem...

    Good luck with that sugar-free monkey. It would be nice to get rid of him--once and for all!

  2. I am just so relieved to hear that Eve was OK. I often hear stories about this kind of thing happening but as far as I have heard, the problems start when parents leave their kids in cars for very, very long periods of time. It must have been very scary for you all the same.

    I now have a craving for Krispy Kreme donuts! One finally opened here in the Brisbane CBD a few months ago and hubby brings them home every so often.(I posted about our box of six on my other blog this week!)

    Hope your weekend is beautiful.

    Best wishes,

  3. OMG I wrote about that last summer right after I had Bjorn. Here in AZ it is SO scary in the summer and I wind up doing quadruple takes everytime I drive somewhere. So Scary.

    Glad she's ok. Soooooo glad she's ok. But try not to beat yourself up about it. Although its scary and heart-stopping, she's ok. And now it's pretty certain you won't do that again!!

  4. I understand how you felt with Evie. We left our youngest when she was about three in the Suburban in October. We had all piled into the house of a family hosting brunch. After 20 minutes we asked where she was. We had left her in her car seat in the car. I thought hubs had gone around and taken her out and he thought the same of me. We found her completely cried out. Thank goodness it hadn't been the dead of winter. It still makes me feel sick. Whenever I hear stories of children left in cars I now understand how easily it can happen.

  5. the last year we lived in eastern idaho, there was an infant who was left in the car, in the middle of the hottest part of july or august--like temps in the 100's, without the car on, all the windows rolled up as his grandmother went in to see her drug dealer. she passed out on the dealer's couch for THREE HOURS!!!!
    so sad. the poor baby did die. hope Heavenly Father helped him pass without suffering. ya know? i always think of that and wish, if they do pass that they pass in comfort and peace. not that i want ANY child to have that fate. not at all. soooo scary.
    so, anyways, i can understand your fears, especially considering how warm it is in AZ. not to mention, the temp inside a car is 15-20 degrees hotter than outside the car.
    so, i think tape on the steering wheel might be good...painter's tape...bright red...or maybe on your driver's side window so it really is the last thing you see as you're getting out of the vehicle. it's just a thought.
    kudos with the krispy kremes. you are a strong woman! =)
    hang in there. you'll find that balance you're looking for. i'm sure of it!
    have a great weekend.

  6. I love your list so far my list consists of "leave your brother alone" and "feed the animals."
    Yes, I think I need a list!

  7. Scary tale about Eve, and not that hard to imagine, to tell the truth. When I had babies, they were always in the front seat right next to us, so forgetting them was not an issue. Now, with the kids in the back, it's not much of a stretch to imagine sort of going into automatic as you run errands and forgetting they are back there, especially when they're asleep.

    I feel so sorry for the parents who've experienced tragedy in this way, and I am very grateful that both you and your little Eve are okay.

    You are a great mom, and your idea for some kind of system to remember makes sense. Maybe you should just get one of those "baby on board" signs and put it on the dashboard or hook it to your purse in a way that you can't get out without noticing it.

    I love that you shared this incident. Who knows? Another mother may avoid a terrible loss by your reminder that these things can and do happen.


  8. Don't you hate those punch-you-in-the-gut parenting moments? A great reminder to be mindful, though.

    Happy summer!

  9. Hi Jen,
    I have visited your blog several times and thought I would finally say "hi"!

    LOVE that summer list! (I think I may need to borrow Slob Day!!)We made one too and so far...we have had a great beginning! But you are so right...I feel like I have neglected myself a bit. It's such a struggle to keep that balance!

    Thank you for sharing your story about Evie! So sorry you had to go through that, but by sharing it, who knows who's life you may have saved! So glad she was ok...

    Love your blog!! I'am following so I can come back often!
    Enjoy the day

  10. Love your summer list! You and your kids have a lot to look forward too.

    Parenting magazine (I think that was the one) just had an article about how easy it is for children to be forgotten and left in a hot car. They stressed that it can happen to anyone. Your story brought that home to me even more. They gave several tips of ways to help avoid it happening. I think the easiest tip they gave was to put your purse on the floor beside that child's car seat. That way when you get out and retrieve your purse you can't help but see your child.

  11. I have to agree with your comment, inspired warning. HE was absolutely watching out and protecting (you both!) during this short few minutes. I swear, Eve gets cuter with EVERY.SINGLE.PICTURE!

  12. love your honesty jenny! i'm sure that wasn't easy to talk about. i'm so relieved that evie is ok. we all make mistakes..we're human. way to go on the no sugar! and enjoy these days with tucker.

  13. :o( about the boy leaving the nest soon
    :o( no sugar...u are better than me :o)

    :o) to the sweet baby in the precious new bibs from grandma

    :o( b/c the story reminded me of last summer when the parents across the yard forgot their baby in the tx july heat...we heard them find him in the car..most horrible sound from a mother i ever care to hear again. sadly after swimming the baby fell asleep...the dad and mom had 2 cars...she was going home w/a few kids...he was going to pick up dinner w/a few...she thought he had the baby..he didn't tell her he put the sleeping baby in her car to take home....ugh!

  14. oh forgot to add...ur list is awesome
    sadly mine is wake up and swim....hahaha

  15. I had no idea you shared the same love affair with butter as I do. I agree, nothing better than a big fat buttery piece of toast! So proud of you for staying strong! Power to us in our sugar quest.

    So scarey about Evie, yuck! Thank goodness she's ok.

  16. Jen...I did the same scary/sickening thing with Abby. Luckily for me it was night (not hot and she slept the whole time) while I shopped at Target. I couldn't get over it for days. I had completely forgotten I had taken her with me. My mom suggested I put a stuffed animal in her car seat. Then, when you put the baby in the car seat the stuffed animal goes right into the center console area (for me at least). When the animal was there the car seat was filled with the baby. No stuffed animal, no baby to check.
    I think we just get rushing with so many things in our heads. We are just one step ahead of ourselves. Grateful for tender mercies!
    Enjoy your last few days with Tucker. He is quite the son! You may think you have many flaws, but girl you sure know how to raise great kids!!

  17. Who needs showers?

    I got a ticket for walking 30 feet from my Volvo in the cool crisp temperatures of February, with the windows cracked, and leaving my sleeping two year old in her carseat. It could have been up to a $2000 fine and they could have taken her from me right then and there (I was told by the well-meaning officer.) The perplexing dilemma of every mom with lots of kids--do I get all of them out, wake the sleeping ones, to run into _______? Well, here in California, the answer is a resounding NO! Luckily, the judge had pity on me.

    So, you're not alone my friend.

    Great job focusing on your kiddos for the summer! A challenge for sure. For me, that pendulum swings one way and then drastically back the other--it's either me or them...I'd like to find some balance too.

    But my hair and nails look real nice when the pendulum is on me!!! :)

  18. I just love you! And I love the women who read your blog. If I had written something like this on my blog, no doubt I would've been raked over the coals by at least 3 or 4 trolls.

    So this post made me cry. Good tears. I love when moms can be honest about things and find support. Because really, did you need anyone to make you feel any worse? Heck no!!

    You are a wonderful mother. Do I tell you that enough? And way to go with the sugar! Nice job.

  19. That is so scary.

  20. I'm so proud of you with your no sugar victory! If you can turn down Krispy Kreme you can thumb your nose at anything! Great job!!
    I know exactly how you feel, getting your son ready to go. They're so excited, and you're almost hurt because they're so excited. Only you're really realy proud too. It's a really crazy, sad, exhiliarating time. Make sure you have lots of *moments* with him - then you can remember them fondly after he's gone and you will feel good that you took the time. I just had a "last supper" birthday dinner with my son. Just the two of us. I really needed to go work out, but I realized it would be the last time EVER to have my boy all to myself. So I packed on another 3 pounds and had dinner with him. We had a great time, and I'll always remember it.
    I don't think you'll be forgetting Evie again. One gut punch like that tends to help you remember. I just love how *normal* you are.

  21. I know what you're saying about time for you. I don't even have a long summer list and I still can't seem to get anything done! I haven't looked at my budget for 3 weeks now, although the bills managed to get paid. Where is the time for the fun stuff that I actually like to do?

    Glad Eve is ok. It happens to the best of us :)

  22. I thought it was funny when you admitted that showers are more scarce these days.
    I hope that you are not too traumatized over your baby in hot car incident. Try not to let the "what ifs" take over!

  23. I know that sick feeling, I left Jackson in the car at WalMart when he was a couple months old in the summer heat. Thankfully I realized it before I even walked in the door, but it was so scary. Like you, I've thought "how could someone be so careless" including drownings and running over their child or any other preventable accident, but it could happen to anyone, and my heart goes out to any parent who has had to deal with losing a child in that way. Thanks for the reminder!

  24. Wow, you have a really strong resolve to stay off sugar this summer. I applaud you! If it was me, I would have given to Lily if she was taunting me that same way.

    Just out of curiosity about Tucker leaving he starting summer school or does BYU start earlier? I always thought that universities normally started late September but then again, things have changed a lot since I went to school in the states.

    Wow, that's a scary thing about what happened with Evie. I remember hearing about those kind of things happening in California during the summers too. It's one thing I'm glad I don't have to worry about since we primarily use public transportation here.

    Actually, I remember reading an article about something similar a few weeks ago. The author, also a mom, suggested that mothers keep their purses right next to the baby's carseat so that when they get out of the car, there is no way they can forget the baby since they always need to carry their purses with them. So maybe you can do that too. That way when you reach for your purse, you'll see sweet little Evie waiting for you in her carseat every time :)

  25. I think that using cold stone as a reward is a super idea! And I think I already know the quote I want the young-uns to memorize. "Stick to the task 'til it sticks to you..."

    I am pretty sure we have a Tucker leaving countdown here, too. He will be missed.

    I have left a child in the car, too. Those scary mistakes that turn out ok are solemn reminders to be more vigilant moms. I know that for me, they are also reminders to not judge others... I have many many shortcomings and mistakes.

    Happy successful first week of summer! We had a good one, too :)

  26. Scary about Evie! Yikes! The bib looks as cute on her as I hoped. You will do fine with Tucker leaving. We miss our children so much when they leave home, but it makes it all the more special when we see them again. We LOVED having Heidi and Sam come. What a darling couple they are.