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Sprinkles and Roses

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S: Sprinkles and Roses Fire trucks and Hoses

BC: Sweetheart Press 2011

FC: Sprinkles and Roses written by T. Wikman in collaboration with K. Wikman

1: A tribute to the wonderful children of: Jill Eric & Shelley Joni Amanda & David Mary & Pat Additional title, in respect to the young boys involved in many aspects of the book: "Fire trucks and Hoses" Special thanks to Victoria as she made the title of this book possible. How? When asked what was on her shirt, her answer: "Sprinkles and Roses" T. Wikman

2: Victoria, Jada, Charlie and Sawyer along with their mom and I ventured to Chuck E. Cheese. I'll tell a story about Jada (pops if you enjoy calling her that as I do). She was only just a little one-year older and I certainly claim her as mine if people ask. So, the entrance there only lets you in if you're counted and out if you're checked. I was standing near the exit, somewhat focused on Victoria high up. I vaguely noticed a group of people checking out with kids. Then I heard a lady say, "These are all mine...except that one, she's not." I found that somewhat amusing and when I looked I saw a small body in stylish jeans and pink shirt, fit snug, following the people out. | Yes there she was, Jada-pops, walking like she owned the world, grinning, with arms swinging as she sauntered after these people. "Oh no," I yelped, "She's mine." I snatched her up and faded back into the crowd of kids and chaos. As we were struggling to round up the kids, all of them insisting on one last game, one last ride, Sawyer stopped and said in complete sincerity "Who IS Chucky?" We had no answer, but this made them all stop and ponder the question. "And where IS Chucky?" Charlie piped in.

3: Dylan and Carson were playing intently when Dylan mentioned getting a certain monster truck. "It's too expensive." Carson replied. Dylan again talked about the monster truck and Carson said "If it's too expensive you can't have it!" Slight murmurings of voices ensued and the volume increased steadily. Finally Carson stated in a matter of fact tone, "Well I don't know what else to tell you." | Grandma was reminiscing as she flipped through pictures of Nora, Megan, Jenae and Tommy. She was feeling lonesome and teary-eyed. Carson watched her raptly, noticing her sadness. So he said vehemently, "You know what? Me and Grandpa are going to Colorado to bring Nora, Megan, Jenae and Tommy back!"

4: Speaking of artists. I know that's not a sentence but I'm going to go ahead and use it if none of you mind. I had been promising Charlie he could paint a picture on canvas. The day we planned on painting, I couldn't find any canvas so the deal was off for now. His heart was set on this and he went to bed a sad little boy, I felt bad. As his mom was getting him tucked into bed, I took a breather in the living room when I heard an excited voice spouting off words. I wondered what it was so I listened closer. "A piece of Kansas!" He squealed. I wondered if his mom was showing him a map or does the ceiling look like part of Kansas? Then Charlie came whirling into the living room, a little power pot of energy. "Kansas! I found a piece of Kansas!" I wondered why Kansas was so interesting. "Come look." He pulled me into the bedroom while his mom sat on the bed just giggling. I was still so very confused but I shrugged my shoulders and followed. He pointed to the closet and said so proudly, "Look a piece of Kansas!" I said "Yes, neat," somewhat complacently as I inspected the glass door to see if Kansas was etched into it. His mom sat there and straight out laughed herself off the bed onto the floor. Then I saw it, his piece of Kansas tucked way into the closet barely visible to the naked eye. Sure it was canvas.

5: One cool afternoon found us at the Square in Prescott with two girls and a picnic lunch. Victoria and Jada were running around crazily, grabbing a bite to eat as they flashed by the table. Suddenly Victoria ran up to her mom and said, "Mom I have to go." Her mom took her by the hand and headed to the bathroom. "Mom I went." A faint odor wafted from the stroller for a short walk to the shops. I mentioned to Victoria's Dad that, "your'e such a boy!" As he talked about his hunting and dogs. Victoria glared at me and sniffed loudly as she fluttered her eyes and said, "he's not a boy, he's a dad."

6: One weekend in the summer of 2011, half of us siblings went off camping to Colorado. I say half because it was, in fact, four out of eight. The weather was beautiful but it did rain a couple nights. One evening as everyone was busily brushing the rain off chairs, wood, tables and their own campfire-scented clothes, my brother was busy making the nightly fire. As we were at 1200 feet elevation, evenings tended to send a chill through our clothing and settle as comfortably as if we had actually invited it, into our bones. All in good humor, we put up with the chill and the rain because it was worth it to be there in Colorado on top of a mountain with those who mean the world to us. Yes, good humor. Until I happen upon my niece, Nora, shivering in her jacket and muttering under her breath, a look of complete disgust on her face. "You okay Nora?" I ask politely. "No." She snapped out. "What's wrong?" I ask. "I wish my Grandma was here 'cuz then we'd make some hot chocolate and snuggle in."

7: During this particular camping trip and another evening of cold and rain, we all headed into the camper to keep dry. In the empty campsite, I noticed Charlie and Sawyer scampering in the rain toward their tent. Happy and giggling they encouraged each other to hurry up. I heard the tent zip up, rustling of tent fabric and wet shoes, then the distinct sound of the tent zipping back down. A few more rustling sounds, maybe two more giggles. Then in the most content voice, Sawyer says, "Aahh, home sweet home." Although I try only to state the facts in all situations, I have to say here that we can only imagine Sawyer collapsed back onto his sleeping bag in relief; hands clasped behind his head with wet, dirty socks crossed at the ankles and a look of utter content on his camp-dirty face.

8: Jada collects 3 dolls, stuffed animals, blankets, purses and a monkey "pack-pack." She stuffs the dolls and animals in her stroller then proceeds to put the pack-pack on her back and slips the purses on her shoulder and elbow. Mind you she's a pro at this and it only takes a moment for the whole process. Once she's satisfied, she walks off at a brisk pace, pushing her stroller, a determined look on her face. I giggle once but am stopped immediately when I receive a stern look from Jada. "Jada why do you have so many babies?" I ask her. "Tuz." she replies. "But why?" "Be-TUZ." | Jada is sitting at the table, gobbling up her homemade soup of which she just loves to eat. A spoonful misses her mouth and lands in her lap. She looks down at it and says "Ooohhh shoot!" In complete disgust, inflections of her words in exact likeness of an adult. After dinner, Jada is telling me a story, hands flying to make her point. She gets distracted by something on her shirt, possibly a stain or wrinkle, and stops her story short. She lifts the bottom of her shirt with her fingers in somewhat of an exasperated gesture and says, "What the heck?"

9: One day, Carson was busily playing and his Grandma was, well she does not quite remember what she was doing, but they had a conversation initiated by Carson. "Grandma, how does God make baby cows?" (At this point in the story be aware that he visited his cousin's farm where there was a baby calf). "It grows inside of the mother cow." Pause for a few seconds. "Well how does it get out?" "There is a special place." "Is it up through the mouth?" "No." Another pause. "Is it down by the tail?" "Yes it is." Couple days later, Carson is on the deck eating a popsicle and Grandma, (this time she remembers) is sitting on the swing. "Grandma, did I grow inside my mother?" "Yes you did." "How did I get out?" "There is a special place." "Well where is it?" "Oh God made a special place for that." "Well where IS it?" (Slightly more challenging tone.) "Oh you probably don't have to worry about it right now."

10: In the midst of playing, Jada suddenly pops (no pun intended) into action and runs into her room. I heard the telltale sounds of toys being tossed and things being treated with little regard to any well-being. I hear her grunts and the "oohh's" getting a tad louder. She runs back out of the room and pulls on my hand. As I follow her, she frantically tries to explain what it is she wants, and being she's only just a little one year-older, I strained to understand. She points to the shelf, a look of achievement gleaming in her eye as she assumes she will now get her sought-after toy. I pull down a toy and show it to her. She hunches her shoulders, shakes her head and says "Nnoooo..." with a smile, giggle and a scrunched up nose. I chose another and got a "Nnooo..." smile, giggle, scrunched up nose. Another and another and another and another (you get the point) and with each wrong toy, "Nnooo..." smile, giggle, scrunched up nose with a slight hunch of her shoulders and shake of her head. Finally I chose the correct toy, a ball, and when I showed it to her, she smiled and nodded her head twice. I thought it was over and that she randomly just chose the ball because she got tired of being so patient. But...then she stopped and backed up. "Oohh!" she giggled, mostly to herself, for forgetting one thing. I backed up too, ready to help her out but no, she didn't need me this time. She marched to the side of the closet, squeezed her little body through a slight crack, expertly reached her arm up and quickly pulled down a pink bat, handing it off to me so she could slip back through the crack. To this day, I don't understand how she knew what she wanted or how she knew where the things were she wanted or how she knew how to get the things she knew she wanted.

11: As we drove back to Phoenix from Prescott one beautiful Arizona evening, Charlie and Sawyer were content in the back seat discussing events that had occurred over Christmas. You know, things Santa had so willingly given them. Charlie was excited about some specific toy, I forget now which one it was. (Now I sound like Grandma but I better be careful because she can edit this part right out if she so desires). So he was talking animatedly about it while Sawyer leaned in, his little shoulder bunched up next to his ear, to listen. "And Sawyer you got what you wanted too, the army guys." He was referring to a bagful of little plastic army guys that cost, what, maybe $1.68 tops. Sawyer nodded his head in complete agreement. "Yes," he said with a satisfied sigh, "my wish came true." Then he snuggled into his car seat and leaned his head back, most likely to imagine himself at home, army guys spread out all over the floor and him playing to his heart's content. (Again I apologize for inputting my own thoughts regarding what Sawyer was thinking but sometimes it's so fun to imagine what their minds are playing).

13: Now this is a story about Charlie and Sawyer's mom. She decided she would bring her two little boys along with their cousin, Carson, and his mom, sledding at Al Qual. The only thing, for some reason, is their mom was in a grumpy mood. (Here we stop and ponder the fact; why would a mom get grumpy when she only has two small boys to care for!) So she got her boys ready, snow pants and all, then went to pick up Carson, and invited Brandon, Daniel and Dylan to join. But first, she had to run to their house to get snow pants! Plus run to Grandma and Grandpa's to get Carson's snow pants. Anxious to get on the road, yes. At Grandma's she told the boys to hurry and suit up. | "And if you've taken yours off, put them back on." Then she plopped down on the step, a thread away from defeat, and with something like sparks shooting from her eyes, said, "Ooooooohh I got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, so watch out." Oh Grandma just smiled because she looked too cute. And quicker than you can say Roy's Hill, there were six boys, ready and waiting patiently to head out. Meanwhile, the mother is collapsed back on the step in a mood we'll call grump. Grandma thinks the sparks turned into tiny sparkles as she looked up at the six snow suited, snuggled up boys with hats and mittens, watching her for the "let's go" signal.

14: I, myself, was relaxing and most likely swinging my foot over my knee when Victoria happened to notice a band aid on my third toe (left foot if you're keeping track). "What's wrong with your foot?" Victoria asked as she casually inclined her head toward me and flicked her wrist at my foot. I glanced down, forgetting about the band aid, and asked where. She came to me and gently touched my toe. As we inspected it, heads bent in concentration, another small head quietly joined our group. Jada crouched down, hands folded between her knees, and voiced her concern as well. I offered to take off the band aid but they both hesitantly decided against it. A bit later, as I walked by Victoria, she glanced at me non-interestedly then went back to her task at hand. But I heard her say, as I walked on by, "If you take off your band aid you can wear one of mine."

15: Grandma set up lunch while Dylan and Carson romped around in the bus. Carson tromped in the house and plopped on a chair, tears in his eyes. "Dylan's not my friend!" He sniffled and chewed on his sandwich. Dylan casually strolled in, sat next to Carson and did the same. Side by side they ate their lunch in cool silence. Dylan glanced up and said softly, "Sorry Carson." Carson took a deep, shaky breath and responded, "You're a nice friend." No prompting from Grandma occurred in this exchange. It was a dark and stormy night. Grandma and Grandpa were startled awake when Dylan burst into their room in a near panic and exclaimed, "The weather thing said there's gonna be a tornado!" Huffing and puffing was heard. In the background, the weather alert radio emitted beeping and buzzing noises. Crisis was averted after close scrutiny of the sky.

17: Victoria's mom was having a baby, and one day she discussed it with her, as she was so curious. She's only three so not sure how or where they come from. She was told it's in her mom's tummy and will come out some day. Her mom asked if she wanted a new sister or brother. Victoria took this quite seriously and thought very hard. | Finally she had her answer. She looked up at her mom to convey her choice. "I think I'll have one just like her." She stated as her little finger pointed to her sister Jada.

18: The next morning, Victoria burst into the living room, perhaps even surprising her mom a bit. As she came racing out, her eyes were darting all over. "Mom did the baby come yet?" She asked excitedly. No baby yet but Victoria's mind worked overtime trying to figure the whole deal out. Victoria asked her mom where she's going and was told to an ultrasound for the baby. | This required more thinking on Victoria's part. She squinted her eyes, cupped her hands together and said "So... does the baby come out in your hands?"

19: Baby Scarlette Shea We love you, we miss you. An angel, in the book of life, wrote down my baby's birth. And whispered as she closed the book, "too beautiful for earth."

21: Carson, his mom and I went to dinner at Rubio's. As we waited for our order in the busy restaurant, Carson said in conversation to me, "Do you know about ships?" I said no. "Well, do you know there's a Titanic?" I said yes. "It sank." He stated. I said wow when did this happen? "1912" was his reply. People started to listen in at this point. "Do you know the Edmund Fitzgerald?" Yes I told him. "It sank too." I asked him where it sank. "Lake Superior." He said. "It's sad, so sad." I agreed with him as did all the other people.

22: Carson was told his uncle would be coming to dinner with his new girlfriend. He thought about this fact then asked, "Will she play with me?" His answer was that "she might." Carson asked, "Well is she a mom or a girl?" He was told that she is a girl. "Is she a small girl?" And his answer "no she's a big girl." Sawyer was just three when he went to the doctor for a preschool physical. Now he found out that he'd also get some shots, two or three, I think. He asked his mom, "Will it hurt?" His mom said he might feel just a little pick and "why don't you sing a song?" So when the nurse started to give him the shots Sawyer started to sing "Two little monkeys jumping on a bed..." The nurse couldn't believe it and she wished all little boys were like him. Sawyer told his mom as they were leaving, "Now let's go get a toy!" When he got home he called his Grandma and said, "Hello Grandma, I got three shots today and I didn't even cry!"

23: Charlie and Sawyer agreed to take turns painting a picture on canvas and they decided Charlie would go first. He painted a house and did so with an artist's touch. Contemplating color and placement, he created its existence. While in the midst of his masterpiece, Sawyer kept asking if he was done yet. Charlie had the patience of a nun (I hear they have lots of it) as he concentrated on his work. "Only a painter knows when his painting is done." He told Sawyer.

24: Feeling a bit nervous about being in daycare, Dylan's mom made him "pinkie promise" to not cry. One day he must have been feeling particularly sad so he reached over and squeezed her hand, saying bravely, "I don't want you to leave." Dylan and Carson were busily playing downstairs when, for reasons unknown, a conflict arose between them. Carson trudged upstairs, weeping. Sometime later, a forlorn little Dylan appeared. Carson approached him and gently touched his arm, "Are you okay?" He nodded and put his arms around Carson's shoulders, they gave each other a hug and went back to play. | Charlie was shootin' the breeze with his buddy in Arizona. "So Charlie, what do you like? Baseball?" "No." "Fishing?" "No." "Basketball?" "No." "Well," his buddy said, perplexed, "What do you like?" Charlie, in a clear and genuine voice answered, "My mom." Driving through town, I was stuffed in the backseat of the car next to Victoria and Jada. We stopped at a light and Victoria leans over and merely says, "Oh, up and down." Hmm, what? I looked at the McDonalds then realized what she meant... In n Out Burger.

25: Carson: He was helping me run the pool vacuum and when it got stuck on the steps, he stood and watched for a while then shook his head and said "It's struggling. That poor thing is struggling." Victoria: After I told her what a good girl she was she said "No I'm not, I'm a stinker." Proving her point she then proceeded to tell me (after I scolded Jada for banging a toy) "Never mind right now, Jada can play with that!" Sawyer: He was observed intently gazing at a flower in a vase. He gently poured some water in the vase from his cup and said "Drink up pretty flower, drink up." Dylan: His response to his mom scolding him: "I don't want to love you!" Carson: Has been heard saying "That's impresson," when he views something as being impressive. Speaking of which, when he was trying on the tux for his uncle's wedding and he caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror, he exclaimed "I look like the president!" Jada: The girls (Toria and Jada) were doing exercises on the floor with the yoga mats and their mom said "Jada show us how mom does her exercises." Jada promptly grabbed a pillow, laid her head down and closed her eyes. Sawyer: His mom asked him one evening to get his pajamas on, he replied "Sure mom because I'm your good habit." Another day as he was on his way outside to join his cousins in a game, he apparently stopped by the door and said, very grown-up like, "Well, well, well what do we have here?" It is said that the mystery continues as to what he had observed. Victoria: As she looked at pictures of her cousin Cassie's animals, she noticed a hamster and said "He has red eyes, he better go to sleep." Charlie: He has a big guy friend with a lot of muscles and as he was looking at his buddy's calf muscles he said "I wish I had ball muscles like you." He pushed at the skin on his own skinny little leg and said "Mine are flat tires." Carson: I picked him and his mom up from the airport and as we were driving away, no more than a minute, he said politely "I like your car." I thanked him and he said "Can you pop wheelies?" Examining the horse birthday cake her mom made for her, Victoria poked at the one eyed horse and said astutely, as a wise person, "One eye does not make two."

26: When Victoria and Jada came to visit me one evening, I had some cupcakes sitting out on the table. Although I did buy them for the girls and their mom and dad, I didn't mean to entice them so blaringly by placing them in plain view. They ran up to the table and sweetly leaned their chins on the backs of their hands as they innocently asked "What are these?" I told them cupcakes. Excited giggles escaped from their mouths as they stared at the sugary desserts. "Tip Takes?" Jada asked in a high voice, bordering on hysteria. I reiterated that it was pronounced cup cakes. "Tup Tiks?" She squealed. Now tottering on the edge of hysteria. I tried again, saying cup cakes very slowly, hoping even that my calm demeanor would encourage them both to keep their excitement in check. But a giggly, slightly shaky voice in an even higher pitch responded with "Tip Takes?!"

27: Christmas day church, we had just one small 4-year old boy with us. Sawyer was sitting between his mom and me, legs dangling and swinging over the pew, contently drawing on his pad of paper, singing softly to himself and seemingly very concentrated on his task. The minister was speaking about how one day Jesus would come and when He did 'we will all go to Heaven.' The minister paused for effect and at this moment, little Sawyer says, quite loudly, "We're going to Heaven?" Slight cringe but I whispered back to him, "Yes one day we will go to Heaven." Giggles from others were fine and all but Sawyer thought about it for a minute and, during another pause from the minister, asked "What's Heaven?"

28: After a fun-filled yet exhausting day, Carson sprawled over the couch, worn out. His mom asked him to put his pajamas on but he was not in the mood to, and he just straight out told his mom so. The denial did not rest well with his mom and she tried more forcefully to ask him; he again refused. So like any other mother would do, she took him by the arm to lead him to the bedroom. But he slumped over like a rag doll and withered to the floor. "Ouch," he sobbed, "you broke my stomach bone." As the whole ordeal was not going well for all involved, Carson's shoulders slouched dejectedly and he came to sit next to me on the couch. His mom followed, pajamas tightly grasped in her white knuckled hand. We all sat in a row on the couch, silent. When he could bear the agony no longer, Carson turned to his mom, his voice crackly, and said, "Mom, you hurt my heart bone." He took his little fist and pounded it once on his chest as tears slowly welled in his sad, woeful eyes.

29: Charlie came dashing inside and asked his Grandma for a bucket to catch the maple leaf helicopters in. He was offered a small plastic baggie of which he refused. Dylan overhead this and said "I want a baggie." So, Charlie requested one too and they headed for the door. On the step, Dylan turned around and asked, "What are we using these for?!" | Carson's mom was grudgingly carrying him around and around; he had her pretending to be a bulldozer. He requested she now switch to a combine and push him around, but she was getting quite tired. Finally she let out a long sigh, slumped her shoulders and said, "Oh Carson I'm tired of being a piece of machinery!" All the boy cousins were merrily playing at Grandma's when supper time rolled around. So Grandma called all the boys and in they trooped; hungry, dirty, tired, happy, talking. One by one they took their places and plates of food were passed around. Then Grandma noticed Carson was missing so she went to call him. He said, "Is everyone in?" Grandma said yes. He sprinted to the door and said, "Oh I didn't realize that." Very grown-up tone.

30: Victoria was freely handing out small little stickers to those that accepted. Hunched over the pad of stickers, she painstakingly ripped each one off, deciding to whom she should offer which one. Decisions reached, she took each bundle of one or two stickers and passed them out with a smile. As my turn to accept approached, she handed them to me, face glowing in her delight. "Here," she said as she pinched two tiny stickers between her "tip take" stained fingers. I thanked her, to which she responded solemnly, "Keep them." And to drill the memory into my heart, she gave me a backward glance, one shoulder slightly jutted forward, her eyes serious, "Promise me?"

31: Me: Jada say snake. Jada: ttthh.....nake Me: Jada say elk. Jada: eh-l-k.....milk Me: No Jada, its eh-l-k.....elk Jada (grinning): Yeth. Okay. eh-l-k.....milk Me: Jada, where do I live? Jada: fin-fix (Phoenix) Jada is looking in the mirror and we are all behind her. She points at different part of the mirror: "Ham, Mom, Daddy, Atorya, me!" Carson is discussing world events with his mom when he tells her, "Mom we should move to Tammy's world." Sawyer was flying home from Arizona and during the flight he asked his mom, "Mom are we still in Tammy's world?" Jada was examining a tiny doll figure and dashed to her mom to show her. "What," her mom asked. Jada giggled uncontrollably, turned it over and pointed, "Butt!" She bent over in laughter. "Butt." She said again in case we didn't hear her the first time. In the store, Dylan spotted the nurse from his doctor's office and proclaimed "There's the patient that gave me the shot!" Charlie (2 yrs): Each time I would go and take a shower, he would squeeze next to the door and call out to me under the crack. "Hepatant inna water!" Meaning "elephant in the water." Four score and s..sev....many years ago, a little girl with brown curls was contemplating a picture of Abe Lincoln. She asked the question that caught her curiosity for such a long time. "Why do they call him Abe Blinkin'? 'Cuz he blinks so much?"

32: Children truly are the loves of our life. They are gifts from heaven. They fill our lives with love and with laughter. They are innocent. They are fresh little breezes running through our day. They are blessings. We can be so thankful they belong to us. It matters not who they are: children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews. They are family. And family means a love so strong, there is no way to describe it...and no need to. ~ K. Wikman

33: Sprinkles and Roses Fire trucks and Hoses Our desire in writing this book is for you to take delight in the many adventures these young children experience. We are proud and fortunate to be a part of their lives and are happy to share our words with you. Throughout our own venture into the world of writing, we amiably referred to our correspondence as "The Sweetheart Press". Countless slews of email soared across the miles, and if they were lucky enough to have found their way into the book, they were carefully worded and edited to obtain peak gratification from the reader. (Thus any mistakes you think you may have spotted are purely a figment of your imagination). The Sweetheart Press prides itself on a clear, concise representation of occurences. My sister, Sara, always fills me in with special memories and is attentive in perceiving details ~ notice how the clouds form a heart as Scarlette's sisters release balloons. With this said, we thank you for your enchantment with these stories, and should you be one of the few, the spectacular, who graced the earth with the presence of these children, we profusely thank you from the depths of our hearts. T. Wikman I give extra special gratitude to my mother, K. Wikman, for without her this book would not exist!

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