bad day, children, humor, kids, mommyhood, motherhood, parenting, Taekwondo

Grace is a Name I Call Myself

I took both boys to taekwondo.  It was rainy and the sky was clouded in a way that made me feel kind of doomy.  For some reason, I did not have a proper attitude.  My attitude could have stemmed from the twisted knee I sustained during last Friday’s Zumba class (yes, I clearly am highly coordinated) and it twinged with regret every time I took a step.  Or, I am starting to really, truly be over the YEAR ROUND taekwondo situation (Mad Dog, please take note).  Yes, with most activities there is a distinctive start point and end point.  Taekwondo is infinite.  Apparently, my boys can become 128th degree black belts and me?  I would like to start earning my black belt in lounging or slacking off in general.  But, alas, this will never happen.  Even if for some reason we suspend all kung-fu type activity in our home, there will be another activity or goal to replace it. 

My goal?  To try to remain gracious even when I feel completely the opposite.

How am I doing Mad Dog? 

On second thought, better not answer that.  You know with me trying to be more gracious and all.

children, gratitude, happiness, kids, life in pictures, mommyhood, motherhood, parenting, self-discovery, Taekwondo

Wise for His Size

It was Full Speed’s turn to graduate.

He was fired up from the start.

Once he donned his sparring gear he felt unstoppable.

He attacked with everything he had.  His opponent didn’t stand a chance.

Full Speed breaks out his flying spin kick.
Go Full Speed!

One of the best parts about being six years old is that life and its lessons haven’t completely caught up to you yet.  You still believe in the impossible.

Santa will visit your house.

Life will always good.

And, in Full Speed’s case, you can imagine that you are a six foot, 190 lb. man who can beat anyone or any obstacle with a spin kick and a heart like a lion.

Maybe Full Speed has something to teach us all.

children, health, kids, mommyhood, motherhood, parenting, self-discovery, Taekwondo


I was sitting off to the side of T.Puzzle’s tae kwon do practice.  With the help of a babysitter, and let’s be real here for a moment, a good babysitter is to a frazzled Mom what wine is to a frazzled Mom, I can take each boy to skill appropriate classes.  T.Puzzle remains in Tiny Tigers and Full Speed attends high-ranking juniors classes.

I was trying my best to blend into the background.  I’m usually exhausted at this point having wrangled all the gear, uniforms, behavior reports, etc. and all I want is quiet oblivion.

The instructor is always trying to get us parents out on the mat.  It’s not my cup of tea, it’s more Mad Dog’s style, so I try to avoid it as much as possible.  To gain more parent involvement, the instructor brilliantly uses the kids now to request help from their Mom or Dad.  No Mom in their right mind would deny their three year old’s request of, “Ma’am?  Would you please hold a target for me?”  Between his saucer-like eyes and killer dimples, T.Puzzle got me out on the mat in about two seconds flat.

I start helping him with his drills.  He’s ducking my moving target, he’s throwing punches and generally doing a fantastic job.

Then he stops.  His arms fall to his sides and he becomes motionless.   He stares up at me.

I have no idea what he thinks he’s doing.

“Mom, I want to give you a kiss,” he states.

So, he leans forward, tilts his head upward and plants a smooch.

He doesn’t skip a beat.  He immediately reverts back to his punches and his fighting stance.

I continue with the drills even though I am changed somehow.

I am reminded of the constant, indestructible nature of love.  It is whole and beautiful and if you take a moment to breathe, you will find it right beneath the surface of everything. Even under the surface of tae kwon do drills.

Love is everywhere.

children, humor, kids, life in pictures, mommyhood, motherhood, parenting

Belts VS. Suspenders

As a Mom you are always questioning if the decisions you are making today will have positive outcomes for your children’s future.

I don’t know if having my boys in tae kwon do at such an early age is the right decision.  I have a bunch of logical reasons to keep them in it.  Structure, channeling high energy into something good and enforcing respect, good behavior and manners are all elements of tae kwon do that I like.

Am I asking too much of them?  On the days that T.Puzzle fights me to go to practice, will he have permanent psychological scars?  Will he never be able to be in a room with a person wearing a colored belt without breaking into a sweat of fear?  Is he doomed to a life of wearing only suspenders?

I. Don’t. Know.

I do know I have seen his confidence improve and it is finally clicking that the color of the belts is meaningful.

He rightfully earned his yellow belt.

Yes he is proud and so am I.  Does that make it right for a three year old?

I. Don’t. Know.

children, humor, life in pictures, mommyhood, motherhood, parenting, self care (or lack thereof)

Losing It


Pumpkins, photographed in Canada.
Image via Wikipedia


Here are some signs that I am losing it ever so slightly while Mad Dog is away:

1. T.Puzzle wore his nighttime pull-up to school (thankfully, it was dry!) and I didn’t realize this mistake until 6:30 pm that evening.  He proudly announced he kept it ‘cwean and dry all day’.  Good for you, son.

2.  I enthusiastically told my boys that I bought light up pumpkins only to discover that these magical squashes needed batteries that were not in my possesion when I really believed I had some.  That kind of squashed our night.

3.  I lost Full Speed’s tae kwon do belt again.  It’s almost as if his purple belt is made up of Mommy-repellent thread.  I literally can never find it when I need it and I’m usually in a time crunch (in OCD terms this means I’m actually running on time and not my normal fifteen minutes ahead of schedule).

4.  I’ve been laughing out loud while viewing the ‘Penguins of Madagascar‘ cartoon with the boys.  Those penguins crack me up.  Or, maybe I am simply cracking.  A fine line I’m sure…

5.  Any reserve tank of extra patience has been completely diminished and I have lost all calm ability to answer every question, validate every comment or observation and give my complete, undivided attention to T.Puzzle’s and Full Speed’s every utterance or behavior.  Really.  Empty.  Gone.  Goodbye.

6.  I am cheesing out on the nighttime story ritual.  I’ve only managed to do it twice in Mad Dog’s absence.  Like I always say to my kids, “Don’t show me you are sorry with you’re words, show me you’re sorry with your behavior.”  I promise, I’ll do stories tomorrow.   Really.  Honest.  Absolutely.

Good night!

P.S.:  We quickly recovered from our absence of batteries and I was able to run to the store to replenish our supplies.  The pumpkins have been enjoyed by all.  So, the system is imperfect but the results are good.  That’s all you can ask for when you are ‘solo’ parenting.