Thursday, December 31, 2009

An angel for heaven

The world lost a phenomenal woman this week. Dr. Ginger Senseman, my family's pediatrician, lost her battle with breast cancer. She is among the angels of heaven now.

And while my sorrow is but a mere tear drop of the grief experienced by her husband and two young boys, there are so many mothers out there right now feeling like they lost more than just their pediatrican. They lost the best doctor they may ever know to care for their children.

I will never forget the day Dr. Senseman met my first born daughter, Noah Grace. She walked into my hospital room during her morning rounds, and exclaimed, "Your daughter is just beautiful. She has the prettiest pink skin I have ever seen."

Perhaps she tells every first-time mother the same thing, but I don't care. The way she said it; the joy in her eyes; the compassion she expressed for Noah. That moment will carry with me forever.

And from that day on, I (secretly) loved going for doctor visits. My kids have never been critically ill, so I can't say that she saved their lives. But I can say she helped us to be a healthier, smarter family. And she helped me to be a confident mommy.

The world lost a phenomenal woman this week. And heaven gained an exceptional angel. Please watch over us from above, Dr. Senseman. Thank you for being a part of our lives.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

On this Eve of Thanksgiving, I wanted to take that proverbial moment to give thanks. To step back, reflect, and recognize the abundant blessings in my life.

And this year, it really boils down to the one blessing from which all the goodness in my life flows: the blessing of motherhood.

I remember one summer during college I spent driving around Kansas and Nebraska selling ag chemicals. While I didn't have much success in ag sales, I did learn to appreciate conservative talk radio. Dr. Laura became one of my favorites. Obviously, I didn't have children at the time, but I knew that her common sense approach to motherhood was something I wanted to keep with me until that day finally came. Dr. Laura always referred to herself as "her kids' mom." I didn't really get; until I became "my kids' mom".

My identity is completely and totally wrapped up in my role as mommy. My life as a woman, a career woman, a Kansan, an American are not seperate, distinguishable roles. They are one and the same.

I can't leave the house without carrying them with me in my thoughts. I can't step into a role in my community without considering their needs.

My life-before-kids is compeltely unrecognizable. And I'm okay with that.


















Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The bug theme continues.

Let me update you on the status of Emily Elizabeth. She laid another egg sac! Our friendly neighbors say they are donating this sac to our house. It would fit right in with all the other buggy bugs living with us.

First, it was the flies in the kitchen. A normal part of fall - a few flies looking for a warm place to hang out until they go to fly heaven. I can handle a few flies.

Then, came the fruit flies. I think they "snuck across the border" on a some pears we purchased at the grocery store. I eliminated all fruit from the counters. Cleaned, cloroxed, went above and beyond to keep up with the dirty dishes. And. they. are. still. here.

But the final blow came just last night. Brent was playing in the living room with the kids when he noticed something unusal crawling in a tall glass vase filled with acorns the kids and I collected on a walk. Worms. Or grubs. Or something small, white and wiggling all over the vase and our treasured acorns. We crossed over into the "totally disgusting" category.

Flies, fruit flies, worms, and the anticipation of thousands of baby spiders come spring...this is one exciting place to live.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Some spider!























I would like to introduce you to Emily Elizabeth. Not one of the impecably cute kids, but the large garden spider looming over their heads. See her? If not, look here.























Salutations! This is Emily Elizabeth. The friendly garden spider who has spun an amazing home just above the front door of our neighbor's house.

















Emily Elizabeth has provided weeks of fascinating lessons about nature. Up close and personal. With the help of the neighborhood dads, we toss crickets and grasshoppers to her each night and watch her "wrap them up and suck their blood." Gross, yes. But absolutely fascinating.























Emily Elizabeth's days are numbered. She has laid her egg sack. Again, amazing. Her masterpiece is complete. Thanks, Emily Elizabeth, for the lessons you taught our children.

Monday, September 21, 2009

For your own good

On Sunday, President Obama said a $3,800 tax isn't really a tax.

Interesting. I thought I might give this approach to reasoning a try...

"Time to get dressed" has been scrapped for "an opportunity to clothe yourself using your own creative approach to fashion."

"Nap time" is now "a restful period for your weary legs."

"Time out" will be substituted with "a retreat to a corner free of talking and distractions."

A "swat with the ruler" will become "a physical reminder that we must listen to instructions."

And finally, "bath time" will now be coined "purification."

...all in the name of "because it's for your own good."

Tuesday, September 8, 2009























Dear Noah Grace,

Congratulations on your first day of preschool! Though it may not be a day you'll always remember, it is etched in my heart.

You have been entrusted to me for almost four years now, but today, I let a little piece of you go.

I see within you the yearning for knowledge and understanding about the world around you. How excited I am for you that you may now more fully begin to explore language, arts, sciences and music.

You are a treasure to our family - a blessing. We love your zest for life, your compassion for your family and friends, your colorful imagination.

We do not tell you enough how much we love you. I pray this first step in letting go will remind us to be more outwardly grateful of our special little girl.

Love you always & forever,

Mommy


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Princesses and pigs

A few brief thoughts I need to capture in cyber-world before they leave my mind...

The other morning at breakfast, Noah said, "Mom, what do I want to be when I grow up?"

"This should be interesting," I thought to myself. "I don't know, Noah. What do you want to be?" I asked.

"I want to be a princess."

Gheez. All this work and I've got a princess on my hands.

"Then I want to show pigs."

Alleluia!! God knows I don't do princess!
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Tucker's vocabulary is growing by leaps and bounds right now. This week alone he has added:

noodles (more like, noones with a cute, scrunched up nose)

okay, mom!

play ball

And to top it all off, he had ZERO potty accidents today. Could it have been because last night at the sandbox, he trotted over to the fence, dropped his drawers and peed on the fence to a standing ovation from neighbors and manly-men Willis and Scott? Nah...men don't need encouragement like that.
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Baby Nell had her six month check-up today. She's definitely the baby of the bunch - grasping for only the 20th percentile for height and weight. But she makes up for it with her big smiles!























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We returned from vacation last week. Thanks to my mom and dad for making a fun trip to Branson, MO possible! Here we are at the fish hatchery; just below Table Rock Lake Dam.

















That's all for now, folks!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I adhere to the "farm dog" method of taking care of your pets. It goes something like this:

- Dog bathes itself in the pond.
- Dog is fed on a semi-regular schedule and is supplemented with rabbits, mice and other various creatures.
- Dog has a small pan of water, but again, supplements with pond and creek water.
- Dog has a dog house for shelter, but prefers the hay loft of the barn.
- Dog roams hundreds of acres and returns home occasionally to chase the cows and nap in the flower bed.

Now that I live in town, the farm dog policies don't exactly apply. Seems it is appropriate to have a collar on your dog, keep its shots and tags up to date and to fence it in at all times.

I know so, because I just retrieved one of our precious dogs from the impound this afternoon.

Yesterday evening, as I was putting water in the kid's pool, I decided to let the dogs out. Brent was out of town - hiking and camping in the cool Colorado mountains - of course. (It was for work; so don't feel too sorry for me.) His black lab and I have had plenty of "near misses." I chased her down while six months pregnant with Noah as she began to thrash a neighbor's chihuahua to death on the street. I lost her another time Brent was away, but she came home hungry and thristy a few hours later. I thought this time would be no different.

The dogs had only been loose for a few minutes before I noticed she was missing. I heard lots of barking a couple houses down, and started after her. I spotted her, yelled for her (in my best "farm girl hollaring for the dog" voice), and watched her run the other way.

Thankfully, my mom was in town, so we put the kids in strollers and started to go after her. I "hollared" a few more times, but she was hot on the trail of a rabbit. So, we turned home. I filled her food dish and water pan and assumed she would be home in a couple hours.

Wrong.

By 9:00 am this morning, still no dog. I made the reluctant call to the police department. They returned my call shortly to inform me an officer had picked up the dog last night and that I could retrieve her from the impound after paying a $65 fee, getting her rabies shot up to date and renewing her tags.

$80.20 later, the dog is at home.

And just so you know, if I had never made that call, she would be been euthanized on the city's bill in seven days.

Something tells me I should have kept my mouth shut.

Or, we really need to move to the farm.

Saturday, June 13, 2009



Promises, schomises. So it's been a month and a half since I posted something. But who am I kidding? These days, I'm just happy to get dressed and have time to brush my teeth.

Nonetheless, yesterday was June 12, and my little boy turned two. And if you couldn't tell from the video above, he hasn't stopped playing basketball for the past 24 hours. In fact, he drug his new basketball in from outside and put it in his bed. Had to sleep with it. I know his Grandpa is grinning from ear to ear right now. Or perhaps, shedding a tear. Grandkids have caused him to "go soft."

(Oh, and sorry about the video being sideways. Will someone please tell me how to fix that!!)

As for the girls, they are already displaying their fair share of drama. Lately, Noah's mantra has been, "Whatever it takes to get a spanking, I'm willing to go that far." Sprint for the neighbors yard. Throw something at my brother. Tell my mommy "NO" for the thirty-fifth time. She is three to a tee.

Nell is now four months old. She can scoot to a sideways position in her crib, and is getting very close to rolling over. You can view her three month mug here.

The other good news from our household is that the daycare gig is finally over with. It had reached a point where I felt like it was taking away from time with my own children. I am left with a little angst over the stress on the family budget; but I am relieved to now be free to focus on my babies. Because if time continues to move at the pace is has in the past six weeks, it will be no time before I ship Nell off to kindergarten.

I'll leave you with this picture. This was Nell's baptism...just another peaceful, prayerful day in our blissful life.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Learning lessons

Did you know that other moms have bad days, too? I would like to thank my neighbor for reminding me of this important lesson. As we watched our kids play in the backyard, she told me about all the ways her bad day went to worse with every turn. I tried to fill myself with empathy for all her misfortune, but instead I was laughing inside and feeling quite thankful for my neighbor and friend.

Later that evening, after the kids were in bed, I knocked on her front door carrying two bowls of ice cream. One bowl for her to wash away her bad day; one bowl for me to celebrate friendship.

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Yesterday, I tried reasoning with my three-year-old.

"If you made the mess, you must clean it up."

"If you don't eat your breakfast, you can't have a snack."

"If you don't take your nap, you won't be able to watch TV."

Simple reason and simple consequence, right? Not exactly.

The light bulb went on for me last night as she was taking her bath. She offered me some "tea" she had just made with the bath water. I politely said, "No thank, you." And she said, "I'll drink it."

She still drinks bath water. How can I possibly reason with that?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Lately, I haven't agreed with Oprah on much of anything. Her glamorous, TV, urban Chicago lifestyle seems waaay out of touch with my middle-of-Kansas-stay-at-home-mom lifestyle. I even dropped my "O" magazine subscription. I just couldn't connect anymore.

But sometime last week, as I was feeding the baby and flipping through the channels, she caught my attention. She had devoted a show to mothers and had this to say,

"We hear from mothers all the time who say they feel alone. They feel overwhelmed; they feel sometimes inadequate. And you say you're afraid to admit the truth for fear of being judged."

I watched the rest of the show in (almost) total agreement.

I feel totally overwhelmed and quite inadequate - and I don't want to admit that. That's why I have been avoiding the Potted Goose. I don't want to face this honesty - face the feelings I have that I am not giving my best to my children and that my life seems to spin out of control any number of days of the week.

But watching the show made me realize that I am doing myself - and all moms out there who used to visit the Potted Goose - a serious injustice. I created this website as a means to connect with other moms, and as a means of self-therapy. You know that "I can laugh about it now" feeling that comes hours after your one year old threw a tantrum on the kitchen floor because you wouldn't let him have Easter candy at 8:05 in the morning.

So, I am really going to try to keep the Potted Goose up to date. Really. I mean it this time.

I guess Oprah still does have that inspirational thing going for her.
















(The fam on Easter morning. We only made it to church on time thanks to the extra help from my mom and my two sisters.)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Love multiplies

Someone once said - err, I read somewhere - err, my mother told me - well, whatever the source, I have experienced once again how a mother's love multiplies, it does not divide.

Though slightly frazzled, short of memory and sleep, I am so happy to welcome Nell Ann Goss to the world. Nell was born Thursday, February 12. She was a beautiful baby girl, weighing 7 lbs, 12 oz., and was 19 1/2 inches long.

















We are 2 1/2 weeks into this new phase of life, and we're all a-d-j-u-s-t-i-n-g. Slowly, but surely. Each day, I feel better and able to do more, which in turn makes everyone else have a better day, too. Mostly, I am beginning to wonder what the heck I did all day during maternity leave with my first baby. Or, I now more fully understand why my first child is the way she is.

Nonetheless, Nell is a precious (and patient) addition to our household. She loves to be cuddled and tolerates well the way her brother and sister like to hold her. And I am so happy to be watching another child grow up in our home!