1) I'm happy to report our gecko is finally eating on his own. No more smashing up worms and force feeding them, but I must admit I did enjoy feeling like I was doing a life-saving work every day trying to get that concoction into the little guy. It seemed more meaningful than making dinner for my own family. What is wrong with me?!
2) I haven't hit my summer groove yet or settled us into a good routine, and it's bugging me. My embarrassing closets have been taunting me too. Bleh. I may actually have to do something about them. Bleh. The thought just makes me. . .Bleh.
3) My little brothers (they're twins) turn 35 today. I guess I can quit calling them my little brothers, huh? I can't help it. A part of me will always think of them as the little squirts who tied my friends up with jump ropes.
I should find a way to get over it though. I certainly don't want them calling me their "BIG" sister. Ew!
4) One night this week all of our kids slept over at a church event. You'd think I'd be wandering around the house nude doing the hootchy kootchy dance, (well, there was something like that, I mean we're not stupid, a whole house to ourselves. . .well, never mind, TMI), but a weird thing happened. About 3:AM I woke up suddenly and just panicked thinking none of them were home. We're talking sick to your stomach, heart pumping, why-did-I-ever-think-it-would-be-good-to-be-an-empty-nester kind of panic. I had to get out of bed, get my bearings, pray and do some deep breathing to conquer it. I guess those kids have wormed their way into my psyche, huh?
5) We took our daughter to school at 1:AM this morning to catch a bus to Kansas City and then a plane to Orlando for a band trip. I'm glad she has the opportunity to go and know she'll make the most of it, but it's strange to think of your minor child so far away. It's a good exercise in trusting God to protect her when she's not in our direct care. I can't say I like it.
6) FYI--Ladies Man has not even mentioned the "girlfriend" this week. It's gonna be all right. Cool.
7) Get this! Remember how last week I was taking my daughter shopping, sure she'd come to her senses about this stupid bikini? She didn't bite. At all. The evidence before her on the racks didn't mean a thing to her.
"Mom, you really think ___________ won't be wearing a bikini?"
She half-heartedly looked over the suits in one store and when she found out I was not buying her another unless it was NOT a bikini, she decided not to look anymore. Her current suit was better to her than a new nonbikini. The only progress made was no arguing took place. We very civilly agreed to disagree about the issue and I saved some dough. Maybe she'll change her mind if _____________ shows up in a tankini. Or maybe I should completely gross her out and don a bikini myself. That might do it. Of course, then I could never be seen in public ever again. Hmm, is it worth it?
That's it for me this fine Friday, folks (say that really fast five times!). You can catch more Quick Takes at Conversion Diary.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Do you ever feel jealous of people with inside jokes? Someone utters the word "jello" or some other innocuous word and their friends erupt in side-splitting laughter. Do you sit there, wishing you understood the humor, pining away to know someone that well? How can you be connected like that?
It takes time.
Memories are made by spending time with each other. The more we see and understand of each other, the more we bond. Granted, it's easier to connect with some than others, but the more time we share with a person, the more confidence we gain to share a little more of ourselves. The more experiences we share, the greater likelihood to find common ground.
Finding the time to cultivate relationships can be difficult. There's so much to do! How can we fit building friendships into our schedules?
As I think over my life and recall my deepest friendships, they all involved CONSISTENT time together. In high school I saw my friends every day and spent time hanging out with them on the weekends or on band trips and traveling to games. In college we spent many nights talking into the wee hours of the morning about life and love. At the very least, we spent a few hours every week in class together discussing complex social issues.
One of my longest relationships was formed on a volleyball team, not because we sweat so much together, but because we sat right next to each other on the bench regularly! Thirty years later I see her twice a month and know she is someone I could call for anything.
As an adult, families and responsibilities require more of us and our time, making it harder to devote the time to relationships, but I have seen a pattern in my own life which has helped.
When my husband first started working at our church, he and I had lunch once a week with the pastor and his wife. Not only did it give us a regular time to talk about the issues involved in our ministries, but it helped us get to know each other quickly and establish a good relationship. As youth group sponsors, we formed close relationships with the other sponsors, seeing them at least once a week for the actual meeting, and often more than that for planning. I've found really good friends in the worship and arts ministry at church, spending many hours in rehearsals together and singing side by side every Sunday. I've watched connection take place among very different women, spanning generational gaps, life stations and with a variety of life experiences, simply because they spend a couple of hours every week together at Bible study.
In every one of these instances, CONSISTENT time together as a group sparked a desire to spend time with individuals apart from the group. These associations spawned coffee dates and lunches, talks on my back porch, social outings and play dates for our kids. When life gets busy and it's hard to find time together privately, we at least connect at that weekly meeting.
If you are looking for relationships, I suggest you get yourself into some kind of a group that meets regularly, at least a couple times a month. Plan it into your schedule. I promise it will pay off. These consistent interactions are the perfect vehicle to learn about each other and often turn into some really good relationships.
I used to hear this phrase, "Quality time is more important than quantity of time." I'm a firm believer that quality time is impossible without a quantity of time.
More Steps to Connection:
Understand All Have Insecurities
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
I told you I'd come back to it after I simmered down. I'm ready to tackle it. I think.
An interesting thing has happened since my rant several weeks ago about balance (scroll down to #2 on the list). Whenever people use the word now in conversation with me, they'll stop themselves, smile hesitantly and apologize.
Really. It's okay. I promise I won't slap anybody.
But it's probably time I explained myself a little better. I've actually spouted off about balance before on this blog. The word is not a new irritation. I found a post I wrote two years ago called A Balancing Act which explains my annoyance pretty well, giving scripture references to back it up. It's not a bad summation, but I've since nailed down my main problem with the word.
Let me be blunt. (First let me take a big breath. . .Okay, here we go.) I think we Christians use the word balance to give ourselves a respectable reason not to serve.
Yep, I said it. Balance gets in the way of ministry. When we play the balance card, we earn the admiration of others for our self-control AND get out of doing the work. Which is fine and dandy if we don't try to put some spiritual spin on it. Now I'm not saying you should never say no, but if you do, please don't use balance as a Biblical reason to do so. I can't find any scripture to back it up. If you know of a passage which supports this idea, I'd love to see it. Jesus never encourages it. He says, "Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it." (Matthew 10:37-39)
Doesn't sound very balanced, does He?
Do missionaries display balance, leaving everything they know in hopes of introducing strangers to Christ? Did the apostles and early Christians show balance when they died for their faith? How much balance did Billy Graham's family maintain with his speaking schedule? Was he wrong to travel across the globe evangelizing? Are you thinking of your pastor's balance when it's YOUR family member's funeral? Do you want your friend to exercise balance when YOU are the one having a crisis?
Every day brings impromptu opportunities to love others. If I am too concerned about my own balance, what will I miss? Who will suffer for my family's convenience? If someone shows up at my door or I get a phone call or I see someone visibly upset, how can I ignore it or push it off to a later date? Sometimes that means we eat Burger King for dinner or our family is rushing more for the next thing or my kids have to wait a little for my attention. But is that terrible?
Now before you start feeling sorry for my family and think me an insensitive mother, please understand I sift everything through how it will affect my family. I schedule time with others around the activities of my kids. And don't forget my word for the year is FOCUS. But sometimes I don't have a choice. Serving often means sacrifice, for me and sometimes for my family. Is it bad for them to wait on Mom? Is it bad to teach them how to meet the needs of others too? Am I terrible mother to juggle things at home to help others? Don't I want them to learn how to do that too? Should my availability be limited to them?
But if you suggest inconveniencing your kids, someone will invariably say, "We should be meeting the needs of others, but not at the expense of our families. We need to keep some balance."
Can you hear me screaming?!
It sounds nice, but it's not Biblical. We are called to love. Sometimes in loving others, our families sacrifice. They are not forgotten, are not given low priority, but their convenience cannot trump every need.
It's not a terrible idea. There are times to say no. But let's not use balance as a "spiritual" excuse to abandon others for the sake of our own comfort level.
Friday, May 22, 2009
1) Our gecko is one sick lizard. We've had to force feed the little guy all week, smashing up meal worms, mixing them with some water and sucking them up a syringe to feed him drop by drop. He is looking better, but he's got a ways to go.
2) Wednesday was the last day of school. I'm not sure if I should do the happy dance or take some tranquilizers.
3) The latest installment of Ladies Man? When asked on Tuesday if he had a girlfriend, my son said, "No, but I could if I wanted to. Really. I've got four of 'em on me right now."
Pray, people, pray.
But the very next day he came home and said, "There's something I need to tell you, Mom. It's not that big of a deal, but I guess I'm going out (he made the quotation marks with his fingers) with someone. Even he seemed to think it a silly notion.
"How will that work now that it's summer?" I asked, "When will you ever see her?"
"Well probably just Facebook."
We may be okay after all.
4) I've started a new tradition with my old college roommate (Wait, let me rephrase that. She's not old, it's just that college was a long time ago. That's not much better, is it? Let it lie, Tam, let it lie.) In the midst of moving and raising families, we haven't kept in touch very well, but this year we've started phone dates, an arranged time to call each other when we've cleared our schedules to really talk. It's been quite fun, but it does make me long for the days we saw each other face to face (it's been ten years!) and had a front row seat to the life of one another. But I'll take what I can get. Love ya, Penny!
5) The other day I heard one little girl tell another, "If it makes you happy, I'm wehwing a bwa."
I don't know about you, but the thought of a little girl who can't even pronounce the word bra actually wearing one, does not make me happy at all.
6) Since our college boy is home I'm having to relearn the back-off-woman technique of parenting. When he's home I worry about him more. I know what he has and hasn't done. When he's at school, I'm blissfully clueless. My husband's been giving me the "let it go" look a lot lately.
7) I am happy to report the fading popularity of the bikini. Last week I noticed fewer and fewer of them in stores. I'm taking full advantage of the opportunity and taking my daughter shopping today. Hopefully we can get a suit we both like this time and avoid the drama of last year's search for the perfect swimsuit. I keep telling her bikinis are out. So far she hasn't believed me, but the evidence will speak for itself, right?
I told my husband last summer, "Just wait, the tide is going to turn on swimsuit styles. There's not much more to take away. Designers are going to have to start adding again."
Of course, he didn't remember my prophetic words. But don't worry. I reminded him and the admiration for my foresight just oozed out of him. Yeah. Let's say that.
I hope you all have a fantastic Memorial Day weekend, my friends, and get the summer started off right. You can catch more Quick Takes at Conversion Diary.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
In "The Emperor's New Clothes" no one can see the Emperor's new suit, but all are too afraid to admit it. What if someone finds them stupid or unfit for their office? So they go on, hiding their real thoughts, maintaining the facade, simply because they fear the opinions of others.
Until one little boy (is he too young and innocent to understand the risk involved?) states the obvious. Once the truth is out in the open, everyone breathes a sigh of relief and reveals their own inability to see the clothing.
It's a good lesson in connection.
We suspect we may be inadequate and worry what others may think if they knew the truth. So we maintain a facade to be acceptable, while inside we are struggling much like the person next to us.
But what would happen if we took a risk, like the little boy in "The Emperor's new Clothes?" What if we stated the obvious--we're ALL insecure? What if we revealed to others our weaknesses and inadequacies? Would they find comfort in knowing they were not alone? Would they be drawn to our honesty? Would we be a breath of fresh air to those around us?
I've seen it happen over and over again. I've watched countless times in Bible study as someone admits their inability to understand or tells of a struggle or fear. Others in the room nod. They smile. They breathe a sigh of relief and enter into discussion. And everyone in the room shares a common bond. We are connected because we know we are not alone. It does not matter if we share the same fear or struggle. Knowing makes us empathetic, helps us realize we are all human and puts us on the same team.
Developing relationships requires vulnerability. It's not easy, but always worth it. People find camaraderie with those who are willing to open up. It's not enough to take a risk and invite someone to coffee. We need to go a step further and give up something of ourselves. When we are vulnerable, we put others at ease, making them feel they can have weakness too. Sharing a real piece of us is the perfect invitation to connection and relationship.
More Steps to Connection:
Understand All Have Insecurities
Monday, May 18, 2009
The graduates walk across the stage, move their tassels and smile, ready to take on the world and reach their goals. Anything is possible. They just need to dream big and go get it.
Or so the theory goes.
I'm curious. How many of you feel like you have reached those big goals and achieved what you hoped? How many wishes are realized? Or did your dream lose its importance as you grew up? Did reality steal it?
Are dreams overrated?
Yet there's something within me that wants to believe the impossible, wants to beat the odds, wants to at least try to achieve something extraordinary. Why? There must be a reason God places these desires in our hearts.
Does the pursuit alone give added meaning and excitement in life? Is attaining our lofty goals as important as working towards them? Is success defined by achievement or faithfulness? Leaving the door open to the possibility of doing something great takes the ordinary out of our reality, gives us hope to press on in difficult times.
It's much like our Christian walk. The hope of something better keeps us going, helps us persevere. The dream of living in heaven with Jesus, experiencing no more heartache and stress, enables us to withstand our time on earth.
Can the same be said for our dreams? Does hoping for and working towards what seems impossible give us more courage for today? Does it infuse us with the child like wonder Jesus encourages? Are these dreams wrapped up with our faith? Does striving for them keep us believing God can do anything?
I may never get a book published. The odds are about the same as me being a finalist on American Idol. The older I get the more unlikely it seems, but I know I'll never get there if I don't work on it and take a shot. In doing so, I am left with a question that makes my insides flutter.
What if it actually happened?
The thought alone can get me out of bed in the morning. It gives me something exciting to think about while folding laundry and puts a spark of joy in an otherwise ordinary day.
To me that joy is worth the extra work, whether the dream is realized or not. The hope of waiting for God to do the impossible keeps my motor going.
And my faith alive.
So go ahead, my friends, dream big and see where God may take you.
Friday, May 15, 2009
1) It's official. My thirteen-year-old is turning into a ladies man. The other day he came home from school and proudly told me he was hugged by at least six girls "without asking!" He got this goofy grin on his face and said, "It was cool." Oh my. We could be in trouble.
2) Though I'm not so sure I'm ready to keep my kids busy all summer, I am definitely ready to take a break from being the Homework Nazi. Man, is that getting old! Of course I'll probably turn into the Get-out-of-bed Nazi, but they'd be shocked if the nagging ended cold turkey, right?
3) I told you already I'm not crazy about summer, but one bright spot is I tend to get more sleep in the summer. Our schedule is SO much more flexible and spontaneous. I have a little more time to focus on writing projects. I enjoy talks on the back porch with anybody and everybody. We take impromptu walks for ice cream (and sometimes meet up with our favorite people!) Hey, maybe summer isn't so bad.
4) I'm having one of those weeks it's hard to get out of my head. I can think on anything forever, like, why does life have to be full of loss, what's the best way to get my work done, when can I get a break, why did my son spray paint his bike, is there a better way to do summer, what would be a good topic for my next blog post, when is the best time to call, what will I be when I grow up, when will I feel accomplished, what do people need, when will I ever find the time to clean my closets, how can I produce something that is truly beautiful, what is the best way to touch people, how can I create a masterpiece, what does my daughter need from me, how could I lose fifteen pounds. . .Yep, I'm a dork. Or maybe just lazy. Or worse yet, a lazy dork.
5) We've got a sick gecko (pronounced geck-o as in heck, not gike-o like the insurance company in the television commercials which have confused my mother-in-law). We haven't seen him smile for weeks. (Seriously, my kids swear he does.) The poor thing just doesn't quit shedding. I would liken it to a never ending period, but the little thing is a GUY gecko. He doesn't have his normal zip or veracity when attacking his meal worms. He just rests his head near the dish and watches them. I miss seeing his little tail quiver right before he pounces.
If you can't tell, I'm fond of the lizard. I hope the vet will fix him up today.
6) It's graduation time in our corner of the world and I must admit it's making me sad even though I don't have a graduate. It's bringing back all those feelings of last year when our oldest hit the milestone. Hopefully I'll be done grieving by the time our daughter finishes high school in two years. I have a feeling it doesn't get any easier with each kid. I'm dreading it already.
7) I'm spending the day with my husband. Can't wait. We're leaving as soon as the kids are in the respective places. I better get off here now and gussy myself up a bit, you think?
Have a terrific weekend, my friends. You can digest more Quick Takes at Conversion Diary.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
It truly isn't fair, is it ladies?
This constant hormonal fluctuation makes me crazy. One day I'm fine, the next I'm weepy about the milk being gone. I can be Momzilla or June Cleaver. My husband is Superman or the most insensitive, self-centered sap on the face of the earth. Up five pounds or down five pounds depending on the week. If I have to deal with acne in my forties, shouldn't I get out of cramps? My kids are fantastic or conspiring an evil plot against me. I'm on my game or can't think straight at all. The gray hairs I pull are gray on the end, black in the middle, then gray again at the root. My face is in a constant state of little eruptions. Some nights sleep is elusive. My hair can be soft and luxurious or as lifeless as straw. One day I'll feel flexible and agile, the next a bloated, blobby mess of a thing. My head can be pounding for days and the only solution is for the dam to break already. I like myself or I'm disgusting. I can do anything or who the heck do I think I am? I can't decide if I should kill 'em with kindness or just kill 'em.
I know I'm not alone. I can see it in the rest of you too, those days you'd love to tell your kids to take a flying leap, the mornings you're sitting in a cloud of grrr, the way you drag yourself into church and try to be nice to everybody. I hear your sighs and agitated tone. I can read between the lines of your Facebook status. I watch the mad dash for chocolate.
Can any good come from this? One thing is certain. My hormones make me needy, needy for a Savior.
But I'd rather put the smack down on Eve.
As soon as I take my Pamprin.
Hang tough, friends. We're in this together.
Monday, May 11, 2009
For some reason (shall we blame it on busyness, unrealistic images in the media, and Satan?), people are lacking a real sense of connection with each other. We want to feel KNOWN, appreciated, understood. We want someone to really "get" us, but those relationships are hard to find.
It's a problem. Every time I blog about relationships or whenever the topic comes up in Bible study, women perk up. People relate. We want deep friendships and aren't experiencing them.
What's a girl to do?
Well, first I think we need to talk about it and look for ways to work on the problem. Now I'm no relationship expert, so I'm counting on some helpful suggestions from all of you (I mean it. Tell how you have built relationships in the comments.) Let's send Satan reeling and get this connection thing worked out.
Step one in my book on finding meaningful relationships with people is understanding all of us have insecurities. Even the most attractive and talented women are able to list their flaws in a second. The same woman who told me I seemed unapproachable told me it was because I was "so put together" to which I uttered an immediate "Psshht, whatever." That is the last way I would describe myself. Easily intimidated? Yes. Well aware of my faults ? Yes. Jealous of the great qualities in others? Yes. Put together? No.
I find that most women I know are the same way, completely oblivious to the effect they have on others, thinking they are no where close to "together." This includes the skinny ones, the well-dressed, the talented, the young, the smart, the pretty, those many people admire.
How can this knowledge help us in developing relationships? If we know the amazing lady next to us feels just like we do, are we more likely to reach out and open up? Will we have greater confidence in our interactions, more empathy, less intimidation? Will we be able to enjoy each other instead of sizing each other up?
It's worth a shot.
Everyone feels inadequate. Everyone has flaws. Everyone has insecurities.
Let's use them to find common ground to bond over.
Watch for more Steps to Connection in the weeks to come.
Satan's Best Trick
Friday, May 08, 2009
1) We attended Field Day this week to watch our youngest compete in a track meet with all the 4th and 5th graders in our town. At one point, my husband leaned over to me and said,
"I would have hated this day as a kid."
To which I responded,
"I'm sure I would have been sick."
We decided there is some sort of athlete gene that is passed down in families and ours must have been missed. Whatever. We can't run worth a darn, but we can sing. That's something, I guess.
2) The boy is home. Our oldest is home from college for the summer. We survived the first year. There were even enjoyable times for both of us. God is good.
3) You ever feel like God is giving you opportunity to practice what you preach?
After a week of discussing in Bible study how the resurrection is relevant to our daily lives, giving us the gumption to push through this earth knowing something better is coming, I had one of those nights where sleep is disrupted by anxiousness.
Too bad my human emotions can't catch up to what I know to be true. I'm working on it.
4) My Kevin gets the Super Husband award this week. In twenty-four hours he bought a car for our daughter, got new tires put on, got the oil changed in our van, settled some insurance issues, planned a Mother's Day get together (complete with buying the groceries and presents), fixed our grill and drove five hours to help our son move home.
I'll say it again, honey. When we got married, you got gypped. Thanks for taking good care of us. You settle my spirit. What would I do without you? Muah.
5) My daughter has wheels again. We may all go on with our lives.
6) I'm attending a funeral today for the pastor who opened my eyes to how a relationship with Jesus could change my life. As a kid, his demeanor reminded me of Billy Graham. He had the stature, the authority and even that tone of voice. Can you tell he was big in my eyes? I'm so thankful he put stakes down in a little town called Hickman, Nebraska. I will always have a special fondness for he and his wife. I hope he sits in heaven today, whole and strong, witnessing the ripples of his labor. Thank you, Pastor Jeambey.
7) Lord, help us, I never saw this one coming. We're out at dinner celebrating our older son's birthday when our thirteen-year-old son pops an unusual question.
"I was wondering if it would be okay if I went to a movie with my friend and these two girls."
"Like a date?" I ask.
"It sounds like a double date," my husband pipes in.
"Uh, no," we answer in unison. No consultation needed.
"You're too young to date. It would be okay if you got some other kids to join you," I suggested.
"But why can't we go with just the four of us?"
"Then it's a double date."
"We don't do that." Haven't we already covered this ground?
"I never got to do that," his older sister says.
"Yeah, but it's different. I'm a boy," he answers, earning an eye roll from her and me both.
"Your brother didn't do it either," my husband reminds him.
"But what if my friend's parents say it's okay?"
"Then I hope he has a lovely time without you." Needless to say my answer was not appreciated.
"But it's not really a date."
"You just said it was."
"Well, when CAN I do that?"
"When you're sixteen."
"What? That's not fair. . .yada yada yada." You can imagine.
Our conversation was cut short as we left the restaurant in separate cars, all four kids in one, adults in the other. Once we joined back up, the hopeful thirteen-year-old dater smiled and said, "I respect your authority," then let it go.
His older brother caught my surprise and whispered, "Yeah, he got in the car and we told him he was stupid."
Don't you love it when years of parenting finally pay off?
Enjoy your weekend, friends. Catch more Quick Takes at Conversion Diary.
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
Monday, May 04, 2009
Twenty years ago, we dreamed of having kids. Ten years ago, with a house full of them, we missed our freedom. Five years ago, we could leave them alone for a few hours. Today we have the best of both worlds, kids living at home, yet old enough for us to get away without them.
Neither one of us was home for lunch twenty years ago. Ten years ago, he came home for lunch, but was mauled by kids while there. Five years ago, we started a weekly lunch date. Today he lingers at lunch time.
Twenty years ago, I thought he was wonderful. Ten years ago I wasn't sure I liked him all that much when his selective hearing kicked in, preventing his attending to the screaming baby at 3:AM. Five years ago there were days I liked him and days I didn't. Today I understand that's normal and has nothing to do with my love for him.
Twenty years ago we worried about having enough money to pay rent. Ten years ago we worried about having enough for diapers and formula. Five years ago we worried about braces. Today we worry about paying for teen drivers, cell phones and college.
When he slept in twenty years ago, I happily joined him. When he slept in ten years ago, I let the kids be as loud as they could to wake him up. When he slept in five years ago, I was annoyed, but let it go. Now I don't say a word when he sleeps in because it means more quiet time for me.
Twenty years ago, it was only the two of us. Ten years ago, we added our fourth child. Five years ago, they were all in school for the first time. Now, we have one in every level of education--elementary, middle school, high school and college.
I thought he was cute twenty years ago. Ten years ago, the charm of being a daddy added to his appeal. Five years ago, a little extra weight and few gray hairs looked really good on him. Today, Mmm, mmm, mmm, baby, that man is fine.
When I walked into a room twenty years ago, he was often so involved in something else he didn't notice. Ten years ago he couldn't help but notice when I drug in a passel of kids. Five years ago he noticed when I wasn't there. Today he sees me walk in. And smiles.
I was crazy about him twenty years ago. Ten years ago, I worried I depended on him more than God. Five years ago, I was sure I couldn't have found a better mate. Now I see he is.
In twenty-two years of marriage, we have been in a lot of good places (and some not so good places), but today is the very best. He is better now than ever. WE are better now than ever. Time has been our friend. God has sustained us and strengthened us.
And we are blessed.
The creator of Marriage Monday is our host for the summer. Pop in and say hi to Christine at Fruit in Season.
Friday, May 01, 2009
1) Boy, oh boy, a nerve was hit with this week's Assumptions post (To get the full effect, you've really got to read the comments. And I received more via Facebook and e-mail). Are we all a bunch of lonely women who look really good and confident on the outside, but pine away for meaningful relationships on the inside? Does it help to know those you find beautiful and smart and together feel the same way you do?
It's true, you know. I think ALL of us feel inferior or lacking in some way. Every single time I write something about this topic of connection among women and the way we stack ourselves up against each other, I get a lot of feedback. I'm thinking it's a subject we need to talk about more. It's time for us to quit being intimidated of each other and start relying on each other. Stay tuned. I know I'll be writing on this more in the days to come.
2) I got to be Supermom this week. My ten-year-old came home for the portion of the day we home school and was bummed because their elementary track and field day, which was supposed to take place that afternoon, had been postponed. In her words, "It was like telling us Christmas was cancelled." It was her teacher's birthday and it sounded like she planned to go out for lunch, but because the kids were disappointed, she changed her plans to eat with them in their classroom.
"We should bring back a treat for her birthday," I told my daughter, "We might have just enough time to make a giant brownie or cookie."
And so we did. Over and over I heard, "Thanks, Mom. This was a really good idea." She kept wrapping her hand around my arm and smiling, smiling, smiling. She made me feel like a million bucks. Later, I watched her carry the finished product into the classroom so proudly, like she was presenting a precious diamond to the Queen of England. It was one of those rare moments you think you may have done something right as a parent.
Such a simple thing, yet such a huge impact (Not only on my daughter. The teacher seemed touched too.). SO worth it.
3) Speaking of birthdays, yesterday was the birthday of my my dear friend, Linda. She is a smart, insightful, thinking kind of woman with a tender spirit and sincere heart for God (not to mention really great hair and eyes that dance when she smiles). She consistently encourages and challenges me, making me want to be a better person. See for yourself by taking a look at her blog, One Voice. Give her some belated birthday wishes while you're at it and pray she doesn't punch me for steering you her way. It's time to sink or swim, babe. You know I love you!
4) I'm one of those weird people who enjoy rainy days. There's something very soothing about the sound of rain gently falling and a little darkness in the middle of the day. I think I would enjoy living in a place like London or Seattle (hey, shout out to you, e-Mom), known for their foggy, rainy days.
5) It's a good thing I had the Supermom moment earlier in the week, because later I felt like a poor one, the mom who means well, but doesn't always get the job done for her kids. All of them have been asking for hair cuts I've put off scheduling (wasn't sure how or where to fit 'em in). My son worried his trip to a specialist was going to cost a lot of money (do I make him feel like the money is more important than him?). The one who's been extremely patient about her wacky cell phone and lack of a car is frustrated. And all I want to do is run away for a week with my husband. Some Supermom, huh? Aye yi yi.
It's crazy how lack of sleep and a busy week can sap the confidence right out of you, isn't it? Should we all recite the mantra together?
I am NOT a bad mom, I am NOT a bad mom, I am NOT a bad mom. . .
6) When I grow up I want the ability to answer multiple questions at the same time while I make dinner, ignore the phone, keep kids on task with homework, find the missing shoes for the concert and properly greet my husband without getting snarky.
7) I'm going to start my weekend off right by staying home today and I think my hunk of a man may actually be here too. The two of us alone in a quiet house for good portion of the day. . .I should be a new woman by 3:PM.
That does it for me on this May Day. Have a great weekend, my friends. Pop in on Jennifer at Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes.