Today became a little more real. My baby brought home her school pictures. But these weren’t just the usual yearly school pictures, the ones where you have sit a certain way and then tilt your head, lift your chin a little and give a nice natural smile. Nope, not those pictures. Today she brought home her 8th grade graduation pictures. How and when did this really happen? Taylor is my youngest. It’s hard enough dealing with my oldest being in his sophomore year of high school and not to mention next Tuesday he begins 6 weeks of behind the wheel driving! It was just yesterday Ryan was in Kindergarten and Taylor was in Pre-school. Where has this time gone? Now Taylor is in her last 2 1/2 months of Jr. High… I always would ask and dream about what the future will bring for both of my kids. I still ask those same questions. I just can’t believe how fast 16 years has gone by.            Soon I will have a junior and a freshmen in high school…too soon… Today became a little more real.

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The Midwest

Sometimes, okay many times I ask myself…why do I live here??I know I’ve grown up living in Illinois my whole life. I grew up in the Quad Cities, and now live in a south suburb of Chicago.

I can remember as a kid growing up we had four seasons- you know them, winter, spring, summer, and fall. One of my favorite winters was 1978. We had a ton of snow! It was the best ever! My friends and I made an amazing snow fort, it was really an igloo. We of course wanted to be like the eskimos and sleep in it, but our parents were never quite alright with that… Summers were spent outside all day long. Of course there were a few scorching days, but we lived to be outside. Fall time was just that, fall. You’d need a jacket or sweatshirt, long pants, and shoes, usually gym shoes. Then there were the spring days…beautiful! Trees budding, flowers peeking through the soil, cool but gorgeous days. Again, don’t get me wrong, not every day was like that. But this is what stands out to me as I think back.

Now growing up in the Quad Cities, the big question was, what side of the Mississippi River do you live on? Are you from Illinois or Iowa Quad Cities? I had always heard Chicago was known as the Windy City…how windy could it really be?? WINDY!!!!!

So I’d love for everyone to think that as I’m looking back, I’m referring to a mere 10 years ago…in my dreams!! No, unfortunately it’s been much longer than that, but we don’t have to get into those details. You’re probably thinking right about now, what in the world is she getting at? What is the point to all of this?

The question on my mind is why do I continue to live in the Midwest? Who in their right mind wants to experience all 4 seasons within a weeks time frame? Apparently me…Where else but the Midwest can it be 40 degrees and sunny one day, the next day it’s 60 degrees and cloudy, not to leave out 40 mph wind gusts, then in 4 days a potential of 3 inches of SNOW?!! We’ve had some of the craziest weather..70 degree days in February, and tornados. It never gets that warm in the Spring. Where can you experience all that, Illinois to be exact. Oh, I almost forgot the most important detail…it’s still WINTER!!

So again I ask myself, why do I live in the Midwest???

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10 minutes….

Upstairs there’s pouring of water as someone is taking a shower…..

A click…a clack as the heating vents contract…..

Every five minutes, the distant roar of a jet flying overhead…..

The occasional deep sigh and snore of a pug deep in her sleep….

A burst of laughter, then it is gone….

A hacking cough, I wish it would leave our house…

Wooooosh…the heat kicks on again.

Foot steps upstairs and now they’re gone…the creek of a chair and then thump, thump, thump, thump, thump…my oldest runs down the stairs.

Ryan- What are you doing?

Me- it’s March, I’m writing. Do you need the computer?

Ryan- Ya, but you go ahead and finish, then I’ll finish up my paper.

Taylor- Mom, can I take more medicine now?

Me- Yes, it’s been 6 hours…

The roar of a jet slowly gets softer as it fades into the distance…

Tick…tock….tick…tock… goes the clock in the kitchen….

The snores are louder, our pug continues in her deep, deep sleep….but now there’s another grumbling snore. Our puggle has curled up next to her and has joined her in this deep, deep sleep.

The creeks, the cracks, the noises of the house settling….

A car rumbles down the street…

Yet another roaring jet fades into the distance….

dodo- dodo-dodo-dodo, a train chugs it’s way down the track…

A deep laugh followed by sounds of a language I don’t speak…it’s only understood by 16 year old boys, I think.

The TV is off, the silence is golden. For these 10 minutes, there’s no arguing, no TV, no phones, no barking dogs, no yelling…. just relaxing, peaceful, golden silence.

 

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Disappointed, but not for long…

How could I not remember? Am I sure I didn’t get that done? How could I let that happen? But it’s not over, I have to keep going…

To say I’ve had a lot going on, so does everyone else. I don’t have anything so imperative or life altering that I’ve been doing or have been facing this past week. But I did let it slip my mind…I didn’t write yesterday 😦 Don’t get me wrong, I did a lot of writing during the day, but none that was dedicated to my slice of life.

I could easily say, it’s been a busy week, but that is just an excuse. So I’m not allowing myself to say it. I just didn’t get my writing accomplished yesterday. But today is a new day, so I’m making sure today I get it done 🙂

I wish I had something amazing, breathtaking, heart felt, or hysterical. But today it’s a little disappointment, but I’m making the most of it, and pushing myself forward.

Tomorrow is a new day, tomorrow is a new slice.

 

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Welcome…

Where has the time gone?? How is it possible?? You snuck up on me when I wasn’t looking…or so it seems. It’s already March 1. Two complete months of this new year, 6 months completed of this school year…Again I must say, how is it possible??

March 1st has so many meanings. Most importantly, we’ve made it through February! No snow, a few spectacular weather days, which led to some not so pleasant, and very dangerous weather yesterday. But today is March 1st! Spring is only 19 days away, how awesome is that?!! But today is March 1st! In just a short five days the window opens for PARCC…seriously, where has the time gone?? How is this even possible?? But today is March 1st! This means today starts our Slice of Life Challenge! 31 days of writing, 31 days of sharing, and 31 days of reading. I am making the commitment to write every day, but I am most excited to read the posts of some of the most amazing authors I know.

I really don’t know where the time has gone…and I don’t know how it’s possible, but here we go, because today is March 1st!!

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March 31, 2016

I’m sitting, thinking about what to write this 31st day of the SOL March writing challenge. My son comes down from his room to see me on the computer pretty much staring at a blank screen. Of course he asks what I’m writing about and if I’m going to write about him. I respond with, sure Ryan, I’ll write about you. So I turn the next question on him, “what should I write about?” His immediate response, “write about how I’m as tall as you today!”

Ryan has had a bit of misfortune in taking after me rather than his father when it comes to height. My husband is 6’4″, I’m only 5’4″. Going through Jr. High and now into high school, pretty much not a day goes by that he doesn’t remind me in one way or another how unfair it is Taylor is taller than him and 2 years younger.

Today when I got home from work, Ryan was walking out of our room. He was watching golf with his dad. He walks over to me with his arms extended. (I have to admit how much I love and cherish the fact that my 15 year old wants a hug daily from his mom). I am the luckiest mom in the world! As he approaches me, his extended arms wrap themselves around me. But this hug is different from others as he releases his arms quickly. He gazes into my eyes. In this gaze, I know exactly where this conversation is headed, as I’m having similar thoughts. He asks me, “MOM, did you shrink today??!” Is this possible? Did he really grow overnight?? We stand back to back and ask my husband, are we really the same height?! Ya, you’re pretty much the same. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Both our dreams are coming true! It’s taken a lot of patience, although the patience was lost at times turning into melt downs, he’s hopefully, finally having a growth spurt! I don’t think there’s a foot of growth in there, but I’d be ecstatic for this to be an 8 inch spurt! Is that possible?? I guess time will tell.

 

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Coach- Parent- Educator

Being a girls softball coach, a pitching coach to be exact, I’m trying to stay ahead of the batter, while at the same time handling my pitchers and catchers emotions. What pitch do I have to stay away from, what pitch does the batter like and what pitch does she struggle with, do I call high, low, inside, outside, curve, drop rise or change??  I’m always checking in with my pitchers and catchers…what’s working, what are you struggling with, how are you feeling out there, you know this hitter is coming up 2nd next inning, we have to stay away from change ups and knee high pitches. You’re going to have to fight through hitting your spots. Adding in the mix of umpires to this already existing emotional rollercoaster is where the stress comes in for me. Trying to get the girls to realize the ump isn’t just making up calls, just as teachers and parents don’t make things up. When something isn’t going right, or you’re not getting the call, you as the pitcher the one in control, you have to make an adjustment. The same goes with our kids with parents and educators. We really do have more important things to do like helping you with something like homework, or making sure you’re understanding a concept, other than making something up just to make you mad or to pick on you! The umpire’s call, what a teacher says, or what a parent says is each one taking their expertise and experiences and sharing that to make a difference in their lives. Knowing how to handle situations or learning how to make adjustments, it doesn’t matter if you’re in school, at home or on the field. Kids don’t always realize we’re on their side and that they need us, just as we need them. Trying to stay ahead of them is the game we’re constantly playing. One day these young ladies and kids will grow up and become a coach, parent or educator.

 

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