Sunday, February 21, 2010

What I love about this guy

This is my Tatey Bugs over the years.
He was the nicest baby ever. He started sleeping through the night at 6 weeks old. How did that happen? Not sure but I am ever so grateful he did. Tate was so super easy to please. If he fussed he was either hungry or wet. If he was tired he went to sleep. He wasn't picky, still isn't. He was so enjoyable. And he had the BEST hair ever! Golden thick locks that constantly gave him attention from all the ladies. He idolized his older brother and would do whatever he could to be with him and watched him intensely for months - trying to do whatever big brother did. Oh they were so sweet together. Connor would sneak Oreos to him whenever he could. Tate would reciprocate with sweet smiles and uncontrollable laughter. They did everything together and still do - only with more opinions and argument now.
But then he turned two and had a little brother to compete with. It was rough times there for awhile. While he adored and loved his baby brother, he loathed his mother and father. Often telling us that he didn't like us. He started screaming and throwing fits. He became defiant, stubborn and obstinate. He tried our patience. I am glad to say that love won out. Those days are far behind him.
Tate is a very sweet boy.
Tate has a strong personality and is very intense. While we have to tell his older brother to be more aggressive, especially in sports, we need to tell Tate to tone it down. He loves to try his hardest at everything he does. Once he makes his mind up to do something do not get in his way because he will accomplish it and won't stop trying until he has done so.
Last spring he decided he wanted to read before starting kindergarten, did I mention that he is super competitive? I was not all that excited knowing his stubborn streak is every bit as strong as mine. But he insisted. We took a few trips to the library and within a few weeks he was reading. He was so proud of himself, as he should have been. He does this with his school work now. He is given an assignment and immediately puts forth his best effort to accomplish it. I love to go into his classroom and observe him. The kid does not mess around, it is all business. But the minute he is out on the playground he is running, playing and organizing the entire class into games and making the rules. I love his tenacity and confidence.
He is a leader.
He is a great brother - he absolutely adores his little sister. The minute he hears her wake up he is out of his bed pulling her out and taking care of all her needs. He will play with her for hours, if she would let him. But his aggressive nature always wins out and he ends up wrestling around until she screams. Only to forgive him moments later and erupt into giggles from his silly tactics to win her back.Tate is serious. But he loves to joke and make people laugh. It's a good mix.
Tate LOVES his dad.
Tate is loyal - to a fault. Nobody messes with someone Tate loves, i.e Dad. Nobody breaks a rule that Tate feels strongly about. Nobody cheers against BYU or Canada without being personally attacked by this #1 fan.
Each night this boy asks to be snuggled. He wraps his arms around my neck and whispers that he loves me. That is my favorite phrase to hear all day. Suddenly the day was wonderful, no matter what happened. I love you Tate, you make my life so much more full and better than I ever imagined. Please never change who you are, always give me goodnight snuggles and whisper "I love you Mom" in my ear. And I promise to always love you and snuggle you back.

6 Years Ago ...

6 years ago today I was in the middle of coaching a junior girls basketball game.
I was also in labor.
I was in denial.
Until half time.
When I no longer had the ability to talk and breathe and stand at the same time.
It was then that Ryan took over coaching for me.
His first time out he called was to diagram a play where, if my water broke, all 10 girls were to pour their water bottles on me so that no one would know what had happened.
They thought this was funny -
I did not
I was bothered that one of our time outs was used in such fashion! What if we needed that toward the end of the game?
Turns out that by the end of the game I really didn't care how timeouts were used, the outcome of the game, the crowd, etc.
I cared about getting to the hospital.
Which is exactly what we did.
Things were going slow though.
There was still another game to be coached that night. I was in no condition to coach knowing the basketball contained inside of me could come bouncing out at any time.
So I sent Ryan.
He resisted, I insisted.
Don't mess with a woman in labor.
Two hours later he returned, we had lost the game, sad loss.
But no time to dwell on it.
Several more hours passed - 24 in all - this was a long labor in rural Canada - no epidural, go ahead and feel sorry for me now please.
4:19 am my little Ryan Tate was born.
7 lbs 1 oz 21 inches long
Ryan didn't love the name, but I begged him during labor, you can really get your way with a lot of things during labor I have learned.
He had a cone head and was blue. He didn't cry at all and we were concerned.
Turns out, he just wasn't a crier -
We slept for a few hours
Ryan returned to the gym for yet another game, we were hosting zones, our last tournament of the year. Tate couldn't wait just one day.
But I have never received such attention after having a baby. My room was filled to overflowing with 14 and 15 year old girls coming to visit. Bringing flowers, cards, sleepers, chocolates, etc. Even other teams sent flowers.
Tate has always been loved by those girls, he is their baby, their first experience with a newborn.
I love that boy.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Well, I am not a smart woman, I know you are all shocked by that. But ... I made a grave mistake.

I am in dire need of a swim suit that fits. It just so happens that I have recently lost a few pounds ... mostly from above the waist! My last swim suit was purchased right after Gage was born 4 years ago. Since then it has been through my pregnancy with McCall - not a smart idea to wear your swim suit while pregnant, things tend to get stretched out and not even the best suit recovers from that.

So I mustered up all my bravery, swallowed my pride, put on my rose colored glasses and ventured out to pick up a swim suit.

Mistake #1 - took 4 children with me, but not a lot of options here as Ryan is gone a lot and it had to be done!

Mistake #2 - had Gage with me! Probably enough said!

Mistake #3 - took Gage with me into the change rooms

Mistake #4 - neglected to duct tape Gage's mouth closed.

The older boys were fine to sit right out side my change room door where I could hear them and still feel safe that they were there. I know Gage too well, so he had to come into the change room to make sure he would still be accompanying me home. I figured he would be busy with his sister during my humiliating ordeal.

But no.

He felt very free to offer his opinions and comments in his very loud sing songy voice. I am pretty sure the women in the adjoining change rooms had to excuse themselves to the restrooms after peeing their pants and laughing at the little boy next door mocking his mother in all her glory.

Apparently I look like a very old naked grandma. Not sure where he has seen one, but he probably made a pretty accurate comparison.

Needless to say, the suit was NOT purchased.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Conversations with a four year old

I don't know what it is about this particular child, but the kid makes me laugh continually. He is witty and clever. He is funny and a cutie patootie. He charms everyone wherever we go. People are drawn to him for some strange reason. I wish I had a little more of his personality - for two reasons, then I would have a more fun personality and he would have a little less for his own good!

Here are a few recent conversations I have had with this 4 year old wonder. As in, I wonder where he comes up with this stuff!

Gage is very concerned about being the youngest boy in the family. He feels that it is unfair and that his brothers will always be older than him so he will never be able to do the things they do.

While driving to pick up kids from school we had this conversation.

"Mom, when will I be the same age as Tate?"

"Never, you will always be two years younger than Tate."

"That's not fair! I want to be the same age."

"Sorry, that's not the way it works."

~Silence as he gathers his thoughts and rebuttal~

"Well, I will be the same age when I am infinity and he is infinity, because that is the same age."

The very next day:

I was enjoying my morning shower, I had turned on Backyardigans for Gage, McCall was buckled into her high chair eating Cheerios, the older boys were at school. Everyone was so quiet I figured that I would actually have time to shave my legs. Bad decision on my part.

As I started my legs I heard the lock being picked by Gage, a common occurrence around these parts. I can't get 5 minutes alone!

Well, usually he comes in and lets me know that he is going to help himself to some sort of forbidden treat because there is nothing I can do about it. But this time he came in with camera phone in hand! He was thrilled because he had finally figured out how to use the camera on Ryan's old phone that he gave the boys. He was so excited to show me that he ran in taking pictures along the way. With me yelling to stop and him smiling and so proud of his new accomplishment.

That phone is now off limits. Sorry, the pictures have been deleted. With Ryan's up and coming political career they could not remain!

Yet another day later:

Gage and McCall and I try to get our errands done in the mornings before picking up Tate from school. This particular morning we had several errands to run and were in a hurry. We ran around trying to be quick. Gage was excited to help out with our adventures by opening all the doors using his "magic". He seems to think that he can open doors by waving his hand in front of them. Today he said,

"Wow, I have so much magic in just one little hand Mom."

I really need to start keeping a little book in my pocket at all times to record all the funny things this boy says and does. I am so grateful that I get to spend every day with the little fella, not a day goes by when I am not laughing at his antics.