Life With Ladybug: Spell me h-a-p-p-y

By Shannon Magsam, Ladybug’s mom

smileystarindex.jpgOK, I know some moms see the big smiley face (or star) on their kids’ paper every week, but it’s been a long time coming for us.

Ladybug just got her very first 100 on a spelling test.

When I pulled it out of her Monday folder after school, I squealed. We grabbed each other’s hands and jumped up and down in the kitchen, bouncing and squealing some more. She was so proud. She worked hard to get that. She’s been working hard, but inevitably she turns a letter around (darn those b’s and d’s!) or forgets to put the ‘e’ at the end of a word. She’s gotten close, but no cigar until this week.

Her reading is really coming along, too. She’s reading everything, from the television guide to the bathroom stalls. “Mom, what does Fewk mean?” she asked recently. Only time I was glad she used the long ‘u’ incorrectly.

In other events, Thanksgiving was really great. We stayed a few days at my sister’s house and we were non-stop busy. I have lots of extended family in the area, so we had plenty of people to visit.

But on the drive home from the festivities, I was terribly melancholy. As I sped to Fayetteville at 75 mph, it felt like I was leaving a little bit of me behind. Of course, I had missed my husband and the comforts of my own little house, but there was something sad in me.

I guess I got to thinking about sad stuff because my parents just rented out the house on the hill where we grew up. It hasn’t seen kids since we were living there. My parents now live in the little valley below our old house – but you can easily see the old house from the front yard. One night I noticed the light in my sister’s old room coming on and it felt so strange to be standing on the outside.

hotchocolate-3-with-marshmallowss200x200.jpgI was suddenly reminiscing about holidays there in our old house, especially Christmas. I thought of my parents dancing in the living room together, Elvis’ Blue Christmas playing on the turntable. And how we girls would always cut in to dance with our dad. I thought of all the Christmas trees we went to cut down out in the woods, my father carrying an axe and the kids stepping on “Devil’s snuff” mushrooms on the way. How mom would bake cookies and we’d have hot chocolate to warm up afterward.

Of course, I didn’t let myself get too worked up. After all, I’m so blessed that my parents are still healthy and able to see their grandkids grow up (and mom still makes awesome cookies), plus a zillion more blessings, including John and Ladybug.

The closer I got to Fayetteville, the less sad I felt. And then I just focused on the happy stuff. Melancholy-smellen-choly.

Christmas is on its way!

Which reminds me: last night, as we drove to drop off Ladybug’s little friend who came over for a play date after school, the two girls discussed the upcoming holidays.

Ladybug said indignantly, “[Boy #1] and [Boy#2] don’t believe in Santa! They think it’s their parents. They’re so cuckoo!”

Another year for believing. I’ll take it.

Oh, and in case you’re feeling blue, here’s something to cheer you up. Click here to see 25 Horrifying Thanksgiving Turkey cakes. And click below to see Surprised Kitty:

Surprised Kitty @ Yahoo! Video