CHILDREN ARE SO SMART UNTIL WE DUMB THEM DOWN!

I was in the bathroom with my daughter changing her earrings and cleaning the holes in her ears. I was taking her rubies out and putting her diamonds in.

“Mommy, what are diamonds?” my daughter asked.

“Stones, baby,” I answered.

“What are rubies, Mommy?” she asked. I could see her thinking.

“They are stones baby,” I said.

“I have stones in my room, Mommy,” she said sweetly.

“Yes, you do baby,” I said.

“They lied to us, Mommy,” she said.

I giggled and said, “Who’s they baby?”

“Those men, who took over our land,” she said seriously.

“They are precious stones, baby,” I said.

She left the bathroom and came back with one of her rocks that she had in her room.

“Mom, look?” she said, oh so seriously.

I looked up and she handed me a rock.

“I’m an archaeologist mom. Stones aren’t precious. I get it now,” she said seriously.

“What do you get baby?” I was hesitant to ask.

“They tricked us, they lied and called them precious. Diamonds come from Africa, right, but so many black people are poor, and they stole the diamonds from them,” she explained.

My 4-year-old just told me precious stones are a sham. LMFAO. She is 100% right. I wasn’t going to be a fool and try to convince her any differently. I took the time to explain to her material things in the big picture hold no value. Not clothes, shoes, cars or homes. True value should be placed in yourself and the people you love. Material is all replaceable, but real family isn’t. I also explained to her family isn’t just the people with the same blood as you, family are the people who don’t turn their backs on you when you need them most. You can lose your house, a building doesn’t make a home, A home is made by the people who live inside it with you. You can lose your jewelry, your clothes but you can’t lose your self-worth! The only true thing you own in this world is your joy! Never let anyone steal your joy!

She gave me a big hug. I really hope she remembers this conversation when she grows up. She really has taught me so much about life and love…I was raised around some really unhappy, materialistic people. It made me think. I thought about the people I know who grew up with the bare minimum, they were full of life, happiness and love. Walk in a wealthy person’s house, you might be offered a bottle of water. Walk in a not so wealthy person’s house you are offered food till your tummy burst and a place to rest your head if needed. Makes you wonder what true wealth really is.

They tricked us, don’t allow them to trick your children!

DEATH BY TINY TOYS

Death by Tiny Toys: that’s the headline I hear in my head at least once a week in my house. How many times do I have to scream, “Pick up your toys?” Last night I rolled over and a Littlest Pet Shop was in my ribs. I just damn near died from these Cutie Cars being left in the middle of the kitchen floor. I was tryna be the good mom and make homemade pizza bagels, baking sheet in my hand, pulling the fresh baked bread out of the oven. I turned around to take my oven mitts off and sat them on the counter. Next thing I know, I step on something little and hard and the damn thing has wheels! After my ass road it 5 feet, I hit the floor! As I lay on the floor, I look over… my daughters face is beet red, her eyes were wide, and she had her hand over her mouth. I know she wanted to laugh but was 2 scared. At this point I was tired and pissed! I didn’t even have the strength to yell. I looked at her and said in almost a whisper tone, “Pick your toys up off the floor.” She jumped up really fast and said, “Yes, Ma’am”, and off she went running with her Cutie Cars in her hand, into her room. Her little feet pit pattered like she was running some kind of race. I heard her mumble, “I am in big trouble.” At that moment I realized getting off the floor at 43 years old wasn’t as easy as it used to be.

Who invented these tiny little toys, they hurt when you step on them? I know whoever sits in an office and thinks these things up they don’t have children of their own. If they did, they would realize it’s one thing to fall over a big toy it’s a whole other thing to step on some little shit that pierces your feet!

I can’t be the only parent out there who doesn’t love these tiny toys, right?

SHE GOT HER 1ST TROPHY AND IT’S 1ST PLACE

2 months ago, my daughter went to her instructor and asked could she be in the tournament. She overheard the older kids talking about it. He looked up at me not knowing how to respond. I smiled at him. He had a long talk with her about how she would have to learn a form and perform it in front of judges. He asked her if she was committed to doing it. That day I signed her up by her request and she was then taught a form. She practiced every day for 2 months. Her Master, the other instructors and her two favorite junior teachers also were big helps to her these 2 months prior to the tournament making sure she knew exactly what she needed to do and prepare.

The day came and we woke up early in the morning to head to some rec center downtown. When we arrived 2 of her instructors were outside greeting people and giving them directions to the registration desk. She walked up like a big girl and handed them her slip. After being signed in, we walked inside and got a front row seat on the bleachers right behind the ring she was going to be in. This was my first tournament I had ever been to, but it reminded me very much of the original Karate Kid. (I haven’t seen the remake but it’s on my to do list with my children).

We put on her uniform and she began to rehearse her form in the ring she would be preforming in, with her Jr. Instructors right there assisting her. Her whole school was there, and she was the baby. I didn’t realize so many adults took class and would be competing. Not in her division but still…I was overwhelmed. She was the most focused I had ever seen her and in her zone. She was comfortable and in her element. She wasn’t looking back at the bleachers looking for me, she was concentrating on her goal.

Tae Kwon Do is an individual sport but her whole school was there to support and encourage her and they really made sure she was ready. When they called all competitors to the floor to go over the rules she was right there listening. I was majorly impressed and thankful how her fellow schoolmates all kept an eye on her and with the group, so she didn’t get lost in between all the people there. I was proud, I knew she was exactly where she was supposed to be.

When it was time for the competition to start, 15 kids lined up in her ring. I started to feel panicked because they were all bigger than her and only one other boy was her size. It was supposed to be 5 years old and younger but NO WAY IN HELL WERE THESE KIDS 5. One boy was damn near 5 feet tall.  No, she wasn’t sparring but I was still nervous as can be. I was thankful they were white belts. I was trying my best to be calm. There was a whole conversation going on between the judges and some coaches. It took them 15 minutes to start. It felt like an hour and a half for me. My mom leaned over and said, “They are taking too long, she’s not going to be focused anymore.”  I looked at her sitting in first position perfectly posed and smiled. She was meditating. Her father and I had a conversation with her about envisioning her performance of her form in her head. We both told her if she could picture herself doing it perfectly, she would. I knew that’s what she was doing.

Finally, they started. One after one, I was starting to relax. These children were going up 2 at a time so they could copy each other. They may have been 9 years old, but they had no idea what they were doing. She was called up second to last. She marched front and center introduced herself, her style, her school name and then asked for permission to start. The judge smiled at her because none of the other competitors had done this. I was so thankful to her coaches. I knew right then she had it in the bag. She got in her zone and did her thang. The 3 judges all gave her a 9.9. score. Her Master was beaming and her whole school and parents erupted with cheers. I was so thankful and proud I couldn’t even feel myself breathing. I looked over and saw tears flowing down my mother’s face. She sat back down with such grace. She did not gloat as the other child went. I don’t even know if she understood what happened. When they called her back up with 2 other children, she stood there at attention. I couldn’t see her face just the back of her, but she was holding so still. The other children were handed their trophy’s and she was given hers last. That’s when we saw excitement as she jumped up and down. Her coach picked her up and gave her a big hug and brought her over to us so we could all take pictures. 1st PLACE! MY LITTLE BABY TOOK 1st PLACE! She held onto her trophy all the way home. I am shocked she didn’t sleep with it! I love the fact she knows her family is proud of her, but I am elated she is proud of herself.

I don’t know if I have ever been so excited in my life. April 20, 2019 will always be special day in my house. It’s the day my little ninja won her first trophy!

EVERYONE DOESN’T AGREE WITH MY CHOICE TO HOMESCHOOL & I’M OKAY WITH THAT!

Everyone doesn’t agree with my choice to homeschool and I am okay with that. I am not in a place in my life where I have to please anyone except my child.  As long as I do right by her, that’s all that matters. She is 4 years old and extremely above average. She always has been according to her pediatrician. (It’s not just a mother’s love.) She is reading at a 2nd – 3rd grade level, doing fractions, bar graphs and 3 digit adding and subtracting. The kid can tell time, count money and speak Spanish. So, I don’t feel right putting her in preschool so she can “socialize” is the right choice for her. In fact, I feel it is an injustice. Her learning will not grow in a school environment. She will be stuck in a class with a group of children saying their ABC’s. FOR WHAT TO SOCIALIZE?  Socialize is the most common thing people love to bring up, as if she is a hermit with no friends, who I don’t allow out of the house. The kid has a slew of cousins, she takes Tae Kwon Do 4 days a week and has a much better social calendar than I ever have with weekends full of play dates and birthday parties.

I understand some adults live for the weekend and their time to socialize with friends. I hate to break it to you but that’s only the working class. The employees who spend their lives making other people’s dreams come true. No offense, but I am tryna raise a C.E.O, a boss, doctor, entrepreneur or an astronaut. I want my little person to live a life that is all her design, full of possibilities and opportunity. I want her to know you can live every day of the week, not just on the weekend.

Let’s face it… it doesn’t take 8 hours in school to complete the work they assign. Most of it is fluff. I cannot send her to school where she will read the words, SLAVE AND WETBACK in her school books but NOWHERE will she read the KLAN or KKK or the fact that white people were her oppressors! I am just not comfortable with the idea of her never understanding the true history of this country until she goes off to college and takes an awakening African American Studies class that turns her head around like it did for so many of us. I will teach her who she is before the world tries to tell her who they want her to be. 

I cannot leave her education in the hands of people who look at her as a number or a check instead of a person!

If your child is average and you are okay with sending them to school to learn the same bullshit you were fed, that’s okay with me. I am not going to try to talk you out of it. If school was great for you, I pray it’s great for them. Me…myself I wasn’t challenged! School didn’t teach me shit but to read a chapter and answer the 6 questions at the end of the chapter. It taught me that even my own teachers were racist, and I was just someone they had to put up with. My saving grace was my tutor Mrs. Ruthann-Crudup Brown. That 5’2” beautiful chocolate tyrant stayed on my ass and went above and beyond what the California school system had set out for me. I’m going to let you go now because I am starting to ramble. I BASICALLY WROTE ALL THIS TO SAY EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT. I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN DIFFERENT AND THAT’S OKAY.  STOP TRYNA PUT PEOPLE IN A BOX BECAUSE YOU WANT TO LIVE THE COOKIE CUTTER LIFE. It simply doesn’t work for everyone.

SOMETIMES I WONDER WHY MY DAUGHTER WAS BORN WITH NEGOTIATION SKILLS

School was not my thing. Kindergarten was a total drag. I didn’t understand why I had to sit in class for hours while people learned their ABCs and to count.  It all seemed like a major waste of my time. At 6 years old, I thought I had better things to do. My teacher got on my nerves. I remember this one time she wanted me to color Christopher Columbus and I refused. I thought it was stupid to spend all day talking about a man who supposedly discovered unknown land. You can’t discover anyplace where there were already people there. I chose to spend my coloring time with my head on my desk. My Grandma taught me about Native Americans, and how they were the first people here. I wasn’t about to participate in a celebration that honored the man who instigated the genocide of the indigenous peoples of North America. I got a chance to explain my view to the class and my teacher. Instead of my teacher respectfully challenging my views, all she said was, “Just color it,” in a stern tone.

I remember thinking to myself, “Talking to me like that is no way to get what you want from me.” I shut down completely. I pushed the paper to the side of my desk and put my head down. I wasn’t disruptive or rude, but I was frustrated and angry that she was teaching 16 young minds distorted facts. I mean, I had to be in that place 5 hours a day. And for what, to learn the wrong stuff?  At that moment, I didn’t care how my teacher felt, and I doubt she cared how I felt. I knew I wasn’t going to color because I didn’t want to. But I was even more peeved that she sent me home with a note.

I locked myself in the bathroom while my mother read the note. I was too scared to come out. She spoke to me through the door for a while until I felt comfortable enough to come out. When I got out, she sat me down at the kitchen table and asked me again if I wanted to color the paper the teacher sent home or get a bad grade. I told her, “Mommy, I just can’t do it. I don’t believe in it.” She said “Well, you’re never supposed to do anything you don’t believe in.” She kissed me on my head and got up out of her chair, while she was pushing it in, I said, “Mommy, I don’t want to do the Pledge of Allegiance.” “What’s wrong with the Pledge of Allegiance, Cherie?” she asked. “It’s just lame, Mommy. We are not one nation under God. If we were, people wouldn’t kill people and hurt children. I believe in God, Mom, but everyone doesn’t.” She just looked and me then finally said, “No, Cherie you do not have to say it, but you have to stand up with the rest of the class, ok.” “Ok, Mommy but I’m not putting my hand over my heart either.” “Fine, Cherie,” she said as she walked away to make dinner. I felt like I won! That is the earliest memory I have of negotiating.

Maybe some things are in your genes….

MY DAUGHTER DECIDED SHE DIDN’T WANT TO ACT BAD ANYMORE, SO SHE BAPTIZED HERSELF

You read it right. My 4-year-old baptized herself. It seems I don’t get PMS anymore but the week before I start my period, my daughter seems to really have a hard week. Well, after getting punished for talking back during math, saying the answer is, “Eiiiiggght,” real sassy and having a hard day in Taekwondo, we were both happy the day was coming to an end. We started our night time routine by getting her in the bath. At this point, I was quiet and so was she. We were both irritated with one another and ready to go to bed. While soaking, she looked up at me and said, “Mommy, I am ready to wash all my sins away,” very matter of fact. I said, “Oh, okay are you ready to wash up?” I got on my knees in front of the tub ready to assist her washing up. She then said, “NO, MOMMY.  I’ma baptize myself!”  I said, “Oh, okay.” Just like that, she grabbed her nose and dunked her head under water.  When she came up, she had both her hands straight up to the sky, like an old lady in a black church.  She screamed, “My Sins are washed away!” I was in shock and trying everything I could to hold back my laugh. She then looked at me and said, “Nope, I need to do it again.” Lol.  She held her nose and dunked her head, then came up on her knees with her hands once again pointing to the sky. Then she said, “It worked, my sins are gone and from now on Ima be an angel because God lives in me.”

I paused and giggled and said, “Yes, he does boo…yes, he does.”

Smh, just like that I was over it as she was. I giggled and washed her up. She wanted to hug snuggle to sleep so we did…that was days ago and so far, so good. She’s been my angel on earth. Hahahaa.

What it taught me is Baptism is a personal choice, if, when and where is totally up to your children, not you. Lol. I am NOT baptized myself. I’m saving that for the Nile River…but that’s a totally different story about my personal goals.

Not only is being baptized a choice but she has figured out misbehaving is also a choice. Hahahaha.  Aww, 4 years old. One day soon, I’m sure I will miss 4.

JUST LIKE THAT I HAVE A LIL CHAMPIONS GREEN BELT

I’m amazed and proud my daughter is so committed at the tender age of 4 years old. Just a month shy of her 1-year anniversary of taking Tae Kwon Do, she took her green belt test. I was really worried because we moved after her first 2 months of taking class and she had to start at a new dojo with new masters. She earned 2 white belts with numerous stripes, but I was afraid she was going to be discouraged. My fears were not projected onto her because she felt none of the pressure that I did for her. (Again, my anxiety is not hers. Thank God.) Her Tia Jacelyn bought her a belt rack for her birthday and she loves it. She looks at it daily and it’s helping her count down the time to her black belt! When she is in her room playing, it is a reminder of her goals.

4 days a week my daughter is at Tae Kwon Do on time, dressed, on the mat in first position, focused and ready to start class. Often, she is the only kid who shows up for her class and she has learned to take advantage of the one on one time with her master. To my surprise she said to him, “I’m ready. I know I can pass my green belt test”. He allowed her to do it. It took 7 LONG minutes. She was focused and determined though the whole test. I don’t know if I have ever been so nervous and proud at the same time. The look on her face when he said, “Good job,” was everything! She turned around and looked at me with the biggest smile when he walked away to get the green belt. Then she turned back around and tried to look focused, but she was smiling so hard her Master couldn’t help but to smile back.

I always tell her, “Mommy is proud of you baby but it’s more important for you to be proud of yourself.” At that moment, I could see it. She was super proud of herself! After he put the green belt on her he handed her the yellow belt and said, “Take this to your mom.” I got a chance to hug and kiss her and say, “Good job.”  It was only a second before she was running back on the mat to continue class. It was only a few seconds but those seconds, I will remember forever. She teaches me so much about life.

This test was a big deal! It wasn’t scheduled but she took control in the direction of her goals. Her Master also believed in her enough to follow her direction. That’s trust and the fact that he believes in her is everything. It was more confirmation for me that our move was right. Prior, she was in a class with 30 other children, so she wasn’t getting the 1 on 1 time with a master I was paying $150 a month for. We lucked up and found the right school this time.

I truly believe this world would be a marvelous place if everyone knew how powerful they really are. For my child, Tae Kwon Do helps her connect with her power. I hope you all help your children find an interest that helps them connect with their power.

MOMMY IS PROUD OF YOU SCOOTCHA. KEEP LIVING YOUR DREAMS!

SHE’S 4 AND ALREADY KNOWS WHO SHE IS

As I iron my daughter’s Gi, I am overwhelmed with emotions! I am so proud because at 3 years old she told me, “No more ballet.  I want to take Tae Kwon Do.” It’s been a year and she has made a commitment to herself and stuck with it! 4 days a week she is there and ready to go. Focused and eager to learn.

The emotion is not just about me being proud, but that fact that she is 4 and knows who she is and what she wants. One thing I wanted was for her to be her own person and not walk in my shadow. To figure out what it was that would make her happy. I so badly didn’t want her to say, “I wanna be an actress” because before she was born people started with the, “Are you gonna put her in acting?” She was 5 weeks old and my agent called her for an audition. It was too much. I prayed she would develop her own sense of self. Her own identity. Me leaving Los Angeles was a huge part of fostering that!

 

Little-GiI’m proud she’s figuring out her way! What makes her happy! That makes me happy. In fact, while I’m writing this, she is over there practicing counting to 10 in Korean so she can surprise her Master on Thursday. She’s learning not because she has to but because she wants to. To me that’s everything!

I SO BADLY WANTED TO BE THE CRUNCHY “GRANOLA” HOMESCHOOLING MOM!

I so badly wanted to be the crunchy “granola” homeschooling mom!

I am a total hippie at heart but… Life doesn’t always go as planned and I am a realist. I purchased $300 worth of beautiful cloth diapers aka Nappies before my daughter was born. That lasted for about a week. Then I went to Costco and started buying the biggest box of Huggies I could find. Let’s just say washing newborn poop wasn’t my thing. Trashing it worked better for me.

I planned on extended breast feeding.  Well, let’s just say after 3 months I wasn’t meeting her demand and I was pumping air. In hindsight, I did make all her “organic” baby food thanks to my trusted Baby Brezza food blender and steamer, which I still love, and she is 4 years old. Organic baby food ended up actually being a lot cheaper than any store-bought brands on the market. No preservatives and pure fruits and veggies for under $10 bucks a week. Yes, I would do it all over again! You would be surprised how much time it did NOT take to prepare, too.

I did manage to continue to co-sleep (even though she turns sideways in bed every night and once bit me – see other post about that) but I wouldn’t change these last four years of cuddle time for anything in the world. She won’t be little long, and I will absorb and enjoy every moment. Plus, I’ve never lost out on sleep like moms complain about. In fact, I sleep more since she’s been here than I ever did before. I have to play sleep, to get her to sleep, which in return puts me to sleep.

Yes, we eat pretty healthy, BUT I still make homemade Pizzas every month with white flour and tons of cheese ;).

My daughter hates bugs, like hates, and if there is a mosquito within 20 miles, it always finds me. So, unless it’s a beach or a farm we really aren’t the nature outdoorsy type. Our back yard is as real as it gets for us.

So Crunchy Granola naw… aint me, in actuality, but in spirit I’m all for it! I’m saying all this to say: be unique! Be you, stop comparing! Motherhood takes us all in different directions. Even if you aren’t doing motherhood exactly as planned, as long as your kid is smiling, that’s all that matters. Make memories, mom, and rest assure your little one thinks you’re the best and that’s really all that matters!

MY DAUGHTER’S FIRST REAL PUMPKIN!

This year I was really excited about my daughter being old enough to really pick out her own pumpkin! I purchased a safety knife, so she could cut it out herself after cleaning it. (She was hesitant about sticking her fingers in.) I told her it was ewwwweeee gooey fun, so she dug in! Still, she wasn’t thrilled about the texture. Being a homeschool mom, I made a really big deal of it.  Not only was it a field trip to the pumpkin patch but it was also a whole Pumpkin Unit Study! We talked about the life cycle of a pumpkin and she learned vocabulary words. We read 4 different books about pumpkins. Her pumpkin investigation worksheet is below.

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She even named her pumpkin” Spookly”! It was a great way to end a productive school week. It also made me realize how much children can really learn while keeping homeschool fun. As she was washing the pumpkin seeds, so we could roast them, she counted each and every one of them! So, math, science, english, home economics and reading were all covered just by a simple trip to the pumpkin patch.  There is a whole world out there to explore with your kiddos and keep it fun! I’d love to learn some of your homeschool tricks.  Please share.