A Fatal Distraction

My four-year-old son was silently struggling for his life near the edge of a swimming pool filled with people, and no one knew it… including me.

It happened so quickly.

I had just taken my little guy’s life jacket off so he could run into the house and go to the bathroom.

The pool party we were attending was starting to wind down and my mind was preoccupied with our after party plans. I wanted to call my husband to confirm our dinner arrangements. Just then, my son tugged at my arm. Continue reading

Dumpster Diving

“I’m hungry!” My 3 ½ year-old son said repeatedly as we made our way down the stairs and into the cluttered kitchen below.  Still rubbing the sleep from my eyes, I mumbled a drowsy: “what do you want for breakfast?”

Much like the red laser beam from one of his favorite nerf guns, my son’s gaze zeroed in on his target:  a stash of candy that I had placed on top of the refrigerator.  I tend to keep “the really good stuff” up and out of reach.  But some of the kids lingering Valentine’s Day candy had recently been moved to the top of the refrigerator as well.  I had naively thought that it would be safe from grabby little fingers up there. Continue reading

I’ll Give You Something To Talk About!

“I don’t want to wear glasses!” my six-year old said anxiously from the back seat of the car.  We were on our way to see a Pediatric Ophthalmologist at the University of Minnesota, after our oldest son unexpectedly developed a lazy eye in November.

My husband and I shared an uneasy glance before shifting our attention to the bundle of nerves in the backseat.

“Why don’t you want to get glasses?” we gently pressed him. Continue reading

Parenting Is For The Full Of Heart

It looked like something out of a horror movie.  One whole side of her face was covered in red.  It splattered down her neck and blanketed her black and white checkered blouse.  I’ll never forget the look on her face.  It was a mixture of shock and dismay, followed by a round of unexpected giggles.

I breathed a sigh of relief at her kind reaction, hastily apologized, and then turned to face the perpetrator of this heinous act.  My three and a half-year old looked up at me, eyes as big as saucers, the ketchup packet still crumpled under his hand. Continue reading

Dare You To Move

To say it was a bad morning would be an enormous understatement.  It was one of those ‘can I please go back to bed and hide under the comforter until tomorrow,’ kind of mornings.  My daughter, who is now 14 months-old, had been up multiple times in the night for the third night in a row!  In her defense, she had just gotten over a second round of a stomach illness.  But honestly, if you aren’t throwing up, why are you waking me up?!

As if my daughter’s late night shenanigans weren’t enough, my middle son decided that he needed to join me in bed at 5:45am.  I have tried hard to establish a “we are not getting out of bed until 7:00 am” rule at my home.  So far, I am the only person who routinely adheres to said rule. Continue reading

The Daughter I Havent Met…Yet

The abdominal cramping started less than an hour into the trip home from my girl’s weekend away. I figured I was experiencing indigestion from the exceedingly rich and creamy entrée I had devoured at lunch. As we continued down the road, however, I quickly realized this was more than just a stomach ache. Sweat formed on my brow as my abdominal muscles continued to contract with increasing intensity. Then the nausea set in.

“Can you pull over?”

I stumbled out of the truck and dropped to my knees. I could feel the rough roadside gravel digging into my jeans as I hunched over and prepared to expel everything from my insides. Instead, I curled into the fetal position as another wave of pain coursed through my body. Continue reading

Overcoming Fear Through Faith

School is in full swing and a new chapter has begun in the Engelhart story. My oldest son started all day, every-day Kindergarten a couple of weeks ago.  His little brother, who is three, started preschool last week.  And I try not to do a happy dance every time I wave goodbye.  I can usually contain the impulse, until they are out of view!

It’s not that I don’t love my children. I really and truly do with all of my heart!  But this mama can use a reprieve from the chaos that seems to be my every-day existence.  And for two days a week, for three solid hours, it’s just me and my one year-old daughter.  It’s amazing how peaceful life can feel for a change. Continue reading