Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Organizing

These little boogers are so stinkin' cute that they received gifts from about 401 people this Christmas! Not that they minded..... Of course, as we were on our way to Christmas #3 or was it #4 ? Samuel said, "Not more presents! We already got some!"

It does melt your heart that people love to buy a little something for your children to show them that they love them. Celebrating Christmas with little children around is pretty fun! The problem? 401 presents + smaller car + apartment= wishing for a minivan and a house?

It's always a miracle each year that we are able to fit everything into our car plus the kids! Poor Samuel was covered in things up to his eyeballs at one point:) He said, "Mommy, we have too much stuff!"

The result is a house that looks like a hurricane blew through it! I worked really hard today organizing and making piles of things to throw out, give away and sell and hiding Christmas presents so there will be brand new toys later in the winter! I also bought these really cool vacuum pack bags from Costco that were recommended to me! They are amazing! I have about 42 (okay maybe a little less) containers of baby/kid clothes (can I hear any other mamas say "Amen?") that are filling the boys' closet and under their beds. My friend told me about these bags and I went with a mission today to find them. I emptied at least 6 large bins of clothes today and sealed them up in these bags and fit them ALL under Z's bed where 2 small under the bed containers were before! I have so much room in their closet, it's amazing! If I could do a commercial for these bags, I would!

Now I'm looking around the house for other things I can shrink and seal up:) Ben was very skeptical about these bags until he watched the magic unfold before his very eyes. I have made a believer.

After all my hard work today, the status of my house has reduced from Hurricane to small tornado. I have high hopes that it will be livable again soon!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Home again.

Well, after a delay due to weather and exhaustion, we are finally home in "Chigako" as Zakkai would say:) It feels weird to be back after being surrounded by so many people for the past 9 days!

We had outings with friends and family, lunch at Chuck E. Cheese's, the Christmas Eve service, 2 Christmases on Christmas Day and 2 the day after Christmas. Sunday was lower key because we had reached the point of complete exhaustion! We were kind of glad for the weather on Sunday that caused roads to be bad and delayed our trip:) It gave us another chance to rest since boy-oh-boy did we have cranky boys! And possibly a cranky mommy...:)


More on the trip later. For now, a few pics!

Christmas Day 2009



Chuck E. Cheese's!

My attempt at a Christmas portrait.


Beautiful Eyes. Zakkai~age 2 3/4


Bright eyes. Samuel~Age 4 1/2


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!!!

Feeling thankful tonight that I can celebrate Christmas with my family in the peaceful country!
Our Christmas so far:
Remembering a 1 little baby born a long, long time ago.
Enjoying sharing the baby's story with my own 2 little ones.
Reveling in the .2 in. of snow sprinkled on the ground:)
7 hours of driving to get here.
20+ presents wrapped and under the tree waiting to be opened.
6 dozen cookies baked and ready to be eaten.
2 little stockings to be opened by 2 excited little boys.
Approx. 7 hours left to sleep.
8 more family members coming over in the morning.
Makes 14 total for our morning celebration.
3 kitties curled up on the couches.
1 hairy white dog looking for trouble.
0 more days til Christmas!

Merry Christmas! Pictures coming soon!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Busy Weekend!

I meant to post last night but after getting home after a failed trip to the zoo, we got busy putting the boys to bed and then I finally finished making some Christmas presents. You can't begrudge me that, can you?

As for the zoo, my friend had the brilliant idea to go with her family to see the lights at the zoo. We loved the idea so much and since our membership is about to expire (sniff, sniff), we decided to drive all the way out to our very favorite zoo in the world. Except we chose to do it on a friday night...in the rain...in traffic....And by the time we arrive, over an hour later, the. zoo. was. closed.

So frustrating. The boys were so disappointed and quite honesty, so was I! At least we got to see some lights on some houses along the way... So we turned around and drove home again, the traffic not being quite as heavy but still taking us 45 minutes. Sigh. Someday I'll get to see those lights at the zoo again. Someday.

Today will be a busy day getting all packed up to head to Ohio again. I feel like we were just there! Oh wait...we were. Anyhoo, gotta pack up the fam, since none of them pack for themselves yet. (I'm working on teaching Ben:) It takes a lot of brain power, of which I don't have much left (!), to remember to bring everything we need for a week. Fan? check. Clothes? check. Diapers for the child who refuses to be potty trained? check. Books to return to family members? Usually remembered halfway to Ohio....

I'd better go make a list! The Thomas Family is Comin' to Town!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Dear Postmaster

Dear Postmaster,

While I appreciate (sort of) your meager attempts to apologize for "mishandling" my mail, I am still amazed that my mail appeared to me in the condition it was in. Seriously, was your postal worker attacked by a dog? A very hungry person? Someone waiting anxiously for an important letter? I'm really confused by the appearance of my very first seasonal Christmas card. By the looks of it, my friend now only has 2 children instead of 3. It's too bad, really, because I was really looking forward to seeing the handsome face of her youngest. Sigh.

And now I have no Christmas card to hang on my refrigerator. Perhaps you forgot to add the other half of my card in the plastic envelope? I could have taped it together...

Postmaster, if you would kindly refrain from playing games with your paper shredder or tossing my letters to passing dogs, I would really appreciate it. Oh and if you could deliver my packages on time instead of 6 weeks later and quit losing my mail, I would also really appreciate that.

Sincerely yours,
Heidi T.






Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Getting Older..

Dear Samuel,
I know you are getting older because:


*I can rarely take a picture of you with a genuine smile these days. It's usually a very cheesy grin but adorable nonetheless!

*You like to tease us all the time now, whereas before you didn't understand teasing and it made you sad

*You can hold such normal "adult-like" conversations with us. It's so fun to ask you about your day and find out what you are thinking about life!

*You are getting so tall and slim. I look at you from afar and can hardly believe that you were once a little butterball with peach fuzz that I held in my arms.

*You get irritated with me when I don't hear you right the first time and have no bones about expressing your frustration over things. I have to remind you how to slow down and teach you about patience.

*You are handling changes in your routines so much easier than when you were younger. We are amazed at the confidence we are beginning to see in you and hope it continues to grow!

*You are more willing to try "yucky" foods or at least give in a little more graciously:) You still hate peas and corn though..

*You really get things when we explain them to you and soak in the information to talk about later. Your memory amazes me!

*You like to remind Daddy and me when we forget things or aren't doing things the "right" way. You are pretty sure you know what's best and we have to remind you who's boss!

*And speaking of "boss", you're getting pretty bossy towards Zakkai! But I'm pretty sure it's an older brother thing and he can hold his own anyways:)

I can't wait to get to know you more and more as you grow and change. You are an amazing little person. But I still treasure those things in you that remind me that you're only 4. I love you!



Dear Zakkai,
I know you're getting older because:


*You just started calling Samuel "Samuel" in this past week instead of "Samel." It makes me sad to hear it but I knew you were going to do it sometime...

*You are also getting tall. I looked at you today and couldn't believe how long your legs are getting. I can see your little slim neck coming out more, although you still have the cutest, softest little belly ever!

*You are getting such a good memory! It's really fun to build on your memories and have conversations with you. You remember some really little details, too!

*You are really trying to discern the passing of time. You are really trying to understand and convey "yesterday", "this morning", "last night, "last week!" But for now, everything happened "last night" even if it was just this morning:)

*You are getting so close to being three and heading towards acting like one instead of a two year old. You still love to tell me "No" and awful lot, though!

*You really spend some time reading books and even drop little phrases into your vocabulary from books we read together, even if it doesn't make sense!

*You are really adding more adjectives and descriptive verbs into your vocabulary, too. Today you ran up to me with the happiest look on your face and told me that you "just scared me silently." "Silently" is probably your favorite descriptive word right now!

*You really don't want to be potty trained. You were excited a couple of months ago but probably because it was new. Now you realized you'll have to do some work so you've decided it's not so cool after all. We'll see who wins this battle..

But even though I see these subtle changes taking place in you, I am also storing up in my heart all of those sweet, ornery little 2 year old things that you still do and say. I love you!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Lemon Cake

The boys begged for a taste of lemon cake tonight after their dinner. And, being the soft-hearted mommy that I am, I indulged them:) Samuel brought his fork of tart yellow goodness to his lips immediately and smiled in ecstasy. Zakkai? Watched for the cake eagerly until it was set before him. Then, true to 2 year old fashion, promptly burst into tears and claimed insistently that he did NOT want or like lemon cake, thank you very much!

We chose to ignore him.

"I don't like lemon cake and I never liked lemon cake! I will not eat lemon cake ever!"


"Maybe I'll take one bite...."

"Hmm...maybe I'd better take another bite just to be sure but I think...this might..not...be..too..bad.."
"Well, I don't know if this bite was big enough! Maybe just another teensy taste..."
"Well, you see, I'm just not sure if lemon cake is something I really like so I have to just try one more piece just to be sure.."

"Boy! It's gone already? Who ate it?"
"I suppose it was a'right."

"More tomorrow?"

Sunday, December 13, 2009

I am so thankful tonight that Zakkai has finally turned the corner! He had a little fire come back into his ornery eye yesterday and a taste of his feisty personality come back. He is still really congested and has a terrible cough but has been fever-free since yesterday morning!!

Of course, I will not be letting him out of the house for at least 3 months to prevent germ-intake but hey, we have lots of toys here:) Too bad Samuel probably brings home new and terrible illnesses from preschool everyday! Ah, c'est la vie!

I have strangely fallen out of the Christmas spirit today. I am guessing it from a week of fatigue and being drained from caring for such a sick little boy. Just feeling a little low tonight and drained. Hopefully I will perk back up soon because I have a lot of things to do before leaving in one week!

On to my next question: What do you give a teacher for Christmas? I want to give both of Samuel's teachers a little something to show them how much we appreciate their care and support of Samuel this past month and a half. Ideas??!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Hang Your Stockings by the Chimney with Care

Does the radiator count in place of the chimney? Thinking of hanging my stockings there.....:)
I finally finished at least one of my Christmas projects! Now I only have a few gifts to make...by next week before we leave...goodness, I'd better get started!

Our new stockings are to replace the old ones I made that turned out a little smaller than I expected and could only practically fit a couple pencils or toothbrushes in them:) Think I did better this time! The stocking part is made of a soft white flannel material and the tops are basic cotton fabrics. I painted on the designs.

In birth order:)


Ben's, as you can see, is a Christmas tree that just may be leaning slightly to the right. We can call it a Charlie Brown tree! Mine is an angel holding some wands with a moon, heart and stars.
Samuel asked me for a red train with sparkly gray smoke! The pictures aren't clear because I was at a weird angle but the train is red and green. Zakkai's is a dinosaur! The boys are very happy with them:)

I am hoping to continue the stocking tradition that I grew up with: We would wake up on Christmas morning and our stockings, heavy with little goodies, would be laid on the ends of our beds! When we got older and there was the possibility of waking us up, they would be right outside our bedroom doors. It was the best thing in the world to wake up and since I was usually sharing a room with my younger sis, hurriedly look to the ends of our beds or sneak open our doors. We would sit on our beds and compare our loot! Usually the "loot" consisted of fun little things like toothbrushes, hairbands, candy, chapstick, etc and one "bigger" gift like a book of lifesavers or something. Then we would steal to our next oldest sister's room to see if she was up and had looked through her stocking yet. We were afraid to go into our oldest sisters' room because they were scary to wake up:) Come to think of it...all of my sisters are scary to wake up! Just kidding, K!

Anyways, I would love to do this with my boys but my problem is, we are never in our own home for Christmas since we always travel! I suppose for now our stockings can travel with us. Now what to put in a little boy's stocking since I can't put in all the girlie things I grew up with?!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Winter

I like being busy. I like having the feeling of accomplishment; being proud of my productiveness for the day! I love being a mommy and doing all of the mommy things I do each day. I like having friends and getting together with them or having them over in my home. I like being involved with children's church and caring for and teaching those sweet little innocents. I like helping others and really try to be available for my friends when I can and feel really guilty when I can't. I really like taking Samuel to preschool everyday where he is thriving so much. And most of the time I like running a household and doing "householdy" things like grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, etc. I like doing a lot of things that I do in my busy, everday life.

I also like being not busy. I like quietness. I like a little solitude. I like escaping from hectic life, stepping away from the hurried pace. I like hot chocolate with a whole lot of whipped cream on the top. I like sitting, curled up on the couch, and reading a book. I like the simplicity and calming effects of sewing, quilting or knitting. I love a rare weekend when the phone doesn't ring, the texts don't beep and we can "hide" away as a family in our pajamas all day if we want and do puzzles or hang out. I like having soft Christmas music playing in the backround, smelling the aroma of homemade soup bubbling on the stove or in the crockpot and feeling safe and warm inside.


There is nothing like having sick children to make you appreciate different aspects of your life. I'm not sure at this point if I will lead a normal busy life with happy quiet moments again until the snow melts away for the final time in May. I should be thankful, I suppose, that if I am to be quarantined in my home for weeks on end with all sorts of nasty diseases circulating around, I should be glad I have many unfinished projects to work on and old books to reread and lots of floors to mop and noses to wipe and children to entertain...........Of course who has time to even think about such things when you are so darned tired from not sleeping and your poor children are so miserable? Did I mention Zakkai has now gone into an ear infection on top of everything else he has suffered from in the past week? Is winter almost over yet?

*My two healthy boys; pre-sickness. Ah..I miss those days!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Pass the P's, Please!

We may have been busy traveling for Thanksgiving and nursing sick children, but we have had a little time for alphabet week! I decided with all of the Thomas-mayhem going on, I would make P week 2....or possibly 3 weeks long:) I've had more important things to concentrate on!

We have been able to do lots of P things, some with pics, some without but we haven't had the time or really, the health to do crafts. Hopefully the little ones will be recovered enough this weekend to add to their alphabet books and wall!

For now: P is for:

Puzzles!! I got in a puzzle mood after Thankgiving and passed on that delightful urging to my husband... In the past 6 days, we have completed 3 puzzles! This is the puzzle I bought last week by Charles Wysocki.


Puzzle #2: Working on our puzzle in our PAJAMAS!! This was the day Samuel started feeling like himself and Zakkai started feeling like..poop!
A close up of #2, one of my favorites! It is little elves making toys and everything in the puzzle is made out of a different object! Ex. The table has Nutty Bar legs, the box on the floor with red piping is made out of triscuits, the chimney is walnuts, etc.
Puzzle #3: Another Charles Wysocki, "Cat in the Suitcase!" I must give just over half of the credit to my hubby:)
Homemade Playdough! While Samuel was taking one of his few sick naps on Friday, Zakkai and I made blue playdough! And what is better than Tigger playing with playdough? :)


And probably my newest very favorite P: An early Christmas gift arrived today....New Pots and Pans!!! Here is my sad little helper, who hasn't smiled since Sat or Sun, organizing our new pots. "Mommy," he said, "Are these mine?"
Taking a picture of my very shiny, stainless steel pots!! So shiny that you can't even see the pot:)

P has also been for: Pumpkin Pie! (I am not a huge fan of pumpkin pie, however, I wanted my boys to taste it and I had a very strange hankering for some...), Pumpkin Waffles, Pumpkin Soup (It was very interesting), Pajamas (we spent lots of time in them over the weekend!), Playing, Puzzles for the boys, too (Ben's mom bought the boys puzzles for P week!), and many many P books: "The Runaway Pumpkin", "Pumpkin Day", "Pizza at Sally's", "The Polar Express", "Pete's Dragon", "Pickin' Peas" and more!
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We are hanging in there, still trying to "recover" our poor little Z, who is now fighting a cold on top of everything else! Poor little man cannot catch a break! I am incredibly thankful for last night, though. I was very anxious about how the night would go since the worst of croup strikes in the middle of the night. I had so many people, family and friends, call yesterday to tell me they were praying for him and I COULD TELL! He slept so peacefully for 13 1/2 hours last night! Poor Samuel, on the other hand, was up coughing the entire night. I kept thinking it was Z, so I would run in there to find him laying still and calmly and find poor Samuel hacking away. I just felt peace surrounding Zakkai last night and it cannot be explained by anything else than God watching over him. I am praying for another night like that tonight..for both of them!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Sickness Part 2:(

Unfortunately, things have been kind of crazy over here in the Thomas household; hence the lack of posting! Poor Zakkai has come down with the H1N1 (confirmed by 2 drs) as of Sunday. I worried more about him because he already had a cough from a cold last week. Sure enough, his cough doubled in terribleness (I just made that word up!).

Ben called me in a panic yesterday at naptime (I was taking Samuel to school and grocery shopping), saying that Zakkai was having trouble breathing. He had put Z down for a nap and he started coughing so badly that he struggled to breath well and threw up! So he got me all panicky and scrambling to get him a dr's appt. His dr.'s office couldn't fit him in, as usual, so I ended up taking him to a Take Care clinic since he wasn't doing too badly. He was put on Tamiflu and an inhaler, which I gave to him before putting him to bed.

Within minutes of him falling asleep, propped up by many pillows, he started coughing this terrible sharp, barking sound. You could tell that he wasn't getting as much air as he should be. Between that and Samuel's coughing fits (he has a lingering nasty cough), I was in their room 4 times within 45 minutes. Ben came home from a workshop when I was in their room 3rd or 4th time and could hear immediately that he wasn't doing well. We were really worried.

About 10 minutes later, Z made some weird noises and I rushed in to find him REALLY struggling to breathe. He was trying to cough and was making this terrible noise when he inhaled, making it obvious that he wasn't getting air. I panicked and yelled for Ben to grab his inhaler, hoping that could open up his airways. It didn't work and he was turning white around his lips. I was SO scared and so was Ben so he helped me bundle him up and i took him to the ER.

I just have to say that the children's ER here is WAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYY better than the adult ER!! The people were so much friendlier and it "looked" cleaner. I waited about an hour to get called back to triage to get his vitals and info taken. He had calmed down a lot, which I found out later, was due to the cold air outside! For some reason that really helps when kids are having trouble breathing.

We got called back to a room about 10 min later and shortly after saw a VERY nice dr, followed by another one a little while later. The consensus diagnosis: Croup caused by the h1n1 virus. Z is prone to croup; this is his 3rd bout with it, so that's why he likely went into it. They brought him juice, fell in love with him because he's adorable:) and watched him for awhile before giving him a steroid to reduce inflamation in his lungs.

We finally made it home close to midnight for a not very restful night's sleep. He was up a lot, with one almost-scary episode. I did a lot of praying because I was so scared he was getting bad again. He calmed down pretty quickly and was just up off and on, crying for me. He slept off and on until close to 9 this morning!

He isn't quite himself today and isn't eating but he's breathing okay, which is what we want! Just praying and hoping for a calm night tonight.....

So please forgive me for ignoring you! I am sitting here with my little one, watching the beautiful white snow fall from the peaceful sky, listening to Christmas music and hoping for a peaceful day...

Friday, December 4, 2009

Dancing Duo and Sad Sickies

*Update! I finally figured out how to convert my video! Enjoy the "Dancing Duo" at the bottom of this post!!!

I thought I would be able to post first thing this morning to make up for yesterday (it's too hard to post Thus nights with housegroup coming here!) BUT my plans were altered when my eldest woke up very sick in the middle of the night. S had a low-grade fever yesterday and a headache but acted fine UNTIL around 2am when I was awakened by a really strange sound.


Once my finely tuned mommy-ear caught wind of strange happenings in the boy's room, I leapt up and went in to find poor Samuel coughing this terrible barking cough. He had over a 101 degree temp, a bad headache, a sorethroat and no voice left! My first thought was croup b/c we've been through that with Z twice now but this was a little different...


I called the dr.'s office first thing this morning and got him an appt. The dr was in "la-dee-da" world and without doing much examining, said it was a virus and to wait it out for up to a week! He was so miserable by the time we got back, that I had to carry him inside:( He took TWO naps today and after the second nap, I could tell he had taken a turn for the worse. He got out of bed and collapsed, complaining of his legs hurting. It took a lot of effort to get him to come out to the living room. Not too long after, when I was at the store stocking up on meds and gatorade, he threw up!


My mommy-instinct tells me this is not just a virus after all, but possibly H1N1, especially since the onset of flu-like symptoms. We had get it sometime, I guess! Anyways, my time and energy is tied up right now with a very sad, very miserable little boy. Pray the rest of us don't get it!!


On top of that Z burned his finger today as we were making something together but now just any finger...it just had to be the finger that he sucks on when going to sleep! Needless to say, much tears and sadness at our house today, extra sleep for Samuel and not as much for poor Zakkai with his little bandaged finger:( We're a mess!


Enjoy the pre-sick/pre-injured video of the boys dancing to one of their favorite Christmas songs: Charlie Brown!!

video

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A Bit of This an' A Bit of That

I just discovered that our new camera takes video...with sound! I know, our old camera really was a dinosaur! So I took a video of the boys that was SO cute and tried to upload it...ALL NIGHT, to no avail. I guess you'll just have to trust me that it was cute:)

We are home-bound today. Samuel woke up with a fever and a headache and isn't allowed to go to school. Zakkai claims he has a headache, too, but dissolved into giggles when I pretended to take him seriously. I'm pretty sure Z is fine, other than his snotty nose and nasty cough.

At the moment, these rapscallions are sitting at the table waiting impatiently for their blueberry muffins to be cooked. They have already had a bowl of cereal and a banana! These boys, one in particular, can pack it away! At our bonfire we had while we were in Ohio, Zakkai ate 1 1/2 hotdogs, bunless, 2 bowls of chili, a whole s'more, a marshmallow, a piece of chocolate and a graham cracker. If there was an eating contest, I'm pretty sure he would've won! I'm in trouble when he becomes a teenager!

Despite recovering from the exhaustion of traveling and jumping back into the busyness of life, I finally finished my couch pillows! I think I really like them. Now I only have about 982 projects to finish before Christmas! So much for relaxing evenings:) I have a quilt to finish, a skirt to make, some gifts, some knitting, some cross stitching...I'm a regular old June Cleaver, without the highheels and dress. Of course, it would be fun to dress up with high heels and pearls everyday just for the sake of....for the sake of what? Sorry, I'm digressing..

I had an impulse buy yesterday. My mom and sis LOVE puzzles and there is always one out at my mom's when I'm there. After helping a smidge with hers over the weekend, I suddenly got in the puzzle mood. Aren't you proud, K? Now, figuring out how to do the puzzle with 2 monkeys in the house...

Monkey #2. Isn't he sweet? :)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

First Pictures

You might remember my recent "mishap" with our camera. Sniff. It's still sitting on my desk, waiting to be laid to rest. I haven't the courage to do it yet....But in the meantime, I am gathering items in my house to sell (I've promised Ben I will leave the couch:) to pay for this:
Our new Nikon Coolpix! There was a really good deal on Black Friday and my sis was kind enough to share a coupon so we decided to take the plunge and get a camera. How can I just stop taking pics of my adorable children, I ask you?! I've heard good things about this camera and am anxious to prove them true.

My first pictures with Mr. Coolpix:



"Mommy, what is that red camera?! Take another picture!"


"Me, beautiful? Nah, get out of here! But let me see that picture on your way out..."

Two boys in their "rocket ship" which just happens to be my exercise mat. Who knew when they marketed this plush exercise mat that it could also be used as a child's toy? Genius!


I am trying to figure out this camera. It seems pretty simple, in fact, much simpler than our fallen camera and far cheaper, too!
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In other news, Samuel took his very first field trip today! I don't tell him about big upcoming events that may be hard for him too far in advance so he won't be too anxious. I waited until this later this weekend, or possibly on the way to school Monday, to tell him that he would be taking a field trip today. He immediately did not want to go on this unknown evil trip. That feeling was dramatically supported when he spotted the big yellow bus this morning. I got him out of the car and he burst into tears:(

He calmed down when we got up to his classroom, where it was chaotic with rushed parents, confused children and a gaggle of brown lunch bags. After he had signed in and used the bathroom, I knelt down to do our usual goodbye routine and saw that his face looked....terrified. Tears were streaming down his face, his lip was trembling and he threw himself into my arms. I kept trying to reassure him how much fun he was going to have, all to no avail. Thankfully, one of his teachers saw what was happening across the room and took the time, through all the chaos, to come and comfort him. She told me I could stay for a little bit (I wasn't allowed to go on the field trip b/c I don't have a TB test on file yet!) and read him a book and walk him out to the bus.

We read a book about cute little school buses and waited for all to settle down. The two teachers, the aide and several parent volunteers each had groups of about 3 kids to chaperone the whole time. His sweet teacher, Mrs. Torres, switched Samuel to her group so she could take care of him. I really appreciated that!

I walked with them out to the bus and he gave me kisses, sobbing the whole time. I kept trying to show no sadness or anxiety so he wouldn't pick up on anything but tried to reassure him instead. It will be hard to forget that sweet boy wetting my cheeks with his tears and saying through his sobs, "I'll see you later. I love you, Mommy."

His teacher led him up the stairs and down the aisle of the bus as he was crying. I walked along outside, with Zakkai and blew him some kisses. When he got settled in his seat, I mouthed out that I loved him and he was going to be okay. His other teacher, Mrs Darby, saw what was going on and called out, "He's going to be okay. We're going to take good care of him. Don't worry!"

I started crying when I walked away because it was so incredibly hard to leave him, scared and sad in the hands of someone else. I knew I had to trust them with my precious boy and even more, trust that God would be watching over him.

And lo and behold, when he climbed off that bus 3 hours later, there was a smile on his face! He had a good time at the Children's Museum, playing with boats in the water, making a craft and looking at dinosaur bones:)

He's not quite ready to talk about next week's field trip though....

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