Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
There are a million tainted yesterdays in my history because I am a bottomless pit of bad decisions. Spontaneous, honest, direct. All admirable qualities in the right context. But, I could be the most negative combination of those qualities EVER. I am constantly putting my foot in my mouth and saying things I should have thought through more carefully. Constantly. Like yesterday.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Today was not one of those days when I wish I hadn't fought the urge to stay in bed and try again tomorrow. That would be lame and unbecoming of a girl like me with so much fire and passion for life. I greet each and every day with a cheery smile and some chirping birds tying my apron strings. Right?
And I would NEVER have excused myself from a conversation at drop off this morning with a total lie. Not me. I couldn't look right in the eye of another Mommy and say I had to dash off for a meeting when in all actuality I just think she is dull and superficial. So.not.me. Never. And I definitely wouldn't have been planning to go to Starbucks with the extra time I had on my hands after getting away from her.
Most certainly, I did not lament to my colleagues that my Canadian client is an effing beotch without disconnecting our phone call first. Did not, did not, did not. Not only do I not EVER curse, but that would be so unprofessional and it was not me. I love all of my clients and think they are brilliant, witty and highly overqualified for their positions. I could never bring myself to think something like that, much less say it out loud to multiple people without making sure the line was clear.
And if I had been out of the office all last week with undiagnosed crud I would be ALL OVER getting caught up and right on top of my projects. Yesiree I would. So it couldn't be me that has been daydreaming all day of the upcoming holidays, baby showers and what I am going to do for Christmas cards right down to whether or not I'll buy personalized postage stamps this year. Ohhh noooo. I am way to committed to my profession to be distracted like that. I am all there, totally present, all day every day and never dilly dally. Never. Not Me.
Most importantly, I would never have welcomed a homework meltdown as the perfect excuse to ship them off to bed early. Never. I welcome all of their pathetic tantrums as a growing experience and would have rationally discussed the problem well before I sent them straight to bed. Oh yeah.
You can head to MckMama's too and join in the Not Me Monday fun. It's so fun to see what everyone has NOT been doing!
- chocolate leather riding boots
- Buttery gorgeous Coach bag
- FLIP video camera
- trendy cotton scarf
- CHI flat iron
- 800 thread count sheets
You get it. Lots and lots of things. And then I decided I didn't care anymore. And I don't. That much. I haven't given up on that one Coach bag, but generally don't want anything more than I have.
In our car on a Sunday afternoon I know that I have every single thing I could want. He loves me, respects me and shares the care of our sweet children. They're healthy, happy and still think we're great. The car has four tires, a running engine and carries us safely to our activities. We park in the garage of our home that's warm, clean and comfortable.
It would be dishonest to say that I don't wish for new lip gloss every other Thursday and a beautiful new piece of jewelry on our anniversary, but I want for nothing. How blessed I am. Truly, truly blessed.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
The gym is crammed full of tiny girls bobbing to Miley Cyrus and we don't know any of them. She is timid and overwhelmed. I pass her off to the high school cheerleader in charge of the tiniest and pretend that I think it's all fine. I have to attach myself to the concept that if I am not nervous she won't be nervous. It's hard to stand by and watch her discomfort. I fear it will be harder later if I don't let her build courage each time she has the opportunity.
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Two upstanding, intelligent, God loving men from the deep South have or are leaving behind a legacy of bitterness and contempt. Because they were alcoholics and they hurt their children. Oh, that breaks my heart. Breaks. My. Heart. I hurt so much for those men and their legacies.
While I am not an alcoholic (I thank God for that, I do) I fret deeply over the legacy that I would leave if my departure from this life were untimely. I am not so blinded by grace that I don't think it's possible. It so is. And I desperately want EVERYONE who touches me to know how much I care. My unsettled sense of me comes from desperately wanting to only be remembered for good. Is that possible?
I want E to know that he is God's greatest gift to me. Ever. He could very well be the reason I am not an alcoholic or drug addict (thank you, babe!). He is quite obviously the reason that I have two healthy, breathtakingly beautiful children. He is the reason that I try to curb my destructive impulses, why I love more deeply than ever and why I smile most days. He is absolutely everything to me. Will he only remember that I don't know how to log into our checking account or will he remember that I adore him and tried to show him every day?
I want my babes to know that they offer me a more gorgeous view of the world than I ever even thought would be possible. I love their hands and feet and charming smiles. I cherish all of the drama, the books we read over and over and the prayer that the three of us made up on a trip to Tallahassee three years ago that mentions their Daddy and their dogs. I selfishly need to know that I haven't offered a careless criticism that they'll remember me for if I weren't here to apologize. I need so badly for them to know that they are my reason without spoiling them rotten in the interim. That's a tough one.
My girlfriends have to know that while my current world looks like just a party of four, that I would have never gotten to this happy place without them. Never. Some of them were there before E and I know they would each be there for me in a minute after E if that beautiful corner of my world should end. I need them to know how much I appreciate their interest in my family, my career and my well being. A chat with one of my girls has so often been the difference in a no good rotten very bad day and a memorable moment. I desperately don't want to be only remembered for my strong-willed, to the point, say what you don't want to hear attitude. If I weren't here to say "I'm so sorry" I would want them to remember me for generosity and my genuine love of their company. I need them to remember me as "That Friend". The one that loved them endlessly.
I desperately need my family (this is intended for my biological and married families - they are the same to me) to recognize that they inspire me all day. Every day. Their faults, their triumphs, their acceptance of me in all my disheveled splendor. There is a certain comfort and confidence that only comes with knowing that you're loved unconditionally by someone who would actually pick you up if you were stuck on the side of the road or in the emergency room. No questions asked. And to be loved like that by more than one someone feels so good. I want to be remembered as thoughtful, and appreciative and hospitable to them. And openly recognize that I am not always so good at that. Please remember me for how much I love you and not my long list of shortcomings.
A spoiled, selfish girl is where I started and I am trying desperately to shake unsettled. I want to leave a legacy that reflects how deeply I feel gratitude and how very, very much I love my life and all of it's glorious pieces and parts. Each of them. I hope you know who you are. I'm slightly unsettled that you may not . . .
Friday, September 25, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I'm working a little today, resting a little and watching I Love Lucy. That's good stuff. I would still watch TV if there were shows like that on network television now. Lucy was one funny lady.
I'm thinking I need to get up and wash these sheets and do my best to kill the germs that are living in my space, but a nap sounds better. I hate sick, but naps are oh so good.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Remember when I said I was finicky. I am. And I am NOT loving following the template of the alphabet and blogging it every day. I am falling off of my blogging wagon. I just keep reminding myself that there are only 26 letters and I can do ANYTHING 26 times. Particularly if I committed in print to doing it. While I am finicky, I am not a quitter. And so much fun is happening in my bloggy world how could I possibly turn my back on it now?
JennyMac at Let's Have a Cocktail granted me an award. Really? That's too cool. I mean way too cool. I've mentioned Jenny's Blog before and follow her constantly. She is sassy, articulate and hilarious. Just my kinda girl. Thank you so much, Jenny. I love you long time.
Chris at Just A Girl was trying to track down this darling family rules idea from another blogger she saw and she found it!!! Good for her. It is a terrific project and I am already wondering how I can use it myself. Chris doesn't know this, but she is constantly on my mind. I fawned over her Organization Station last month and finally got my own version of perfect installed in my kitchen over the weekend. It's not quite as fab as hers, but I also don't need a mudroom. I live in sunny Southern California and just have a cabinet inside the kitchen door that works. I had to say that to make myself feel better. I swoon over her mudroom, but don't want to NEED IT because my kids clothes are covered in snow. We've all got our own issues.
Super cute Michelle shared some three month photos of her darling son, Tyler. I love anyone who is so shamelessly in love with their son. I have had a sip of that juice myself. I am a little smitten with her guy, too. He reminds me of Max at that age. I need to find a photo and put them side by side. First born boys are so special and I love following Michelle falling in love with him. Absolutely adorable.
And when I was catching up on comments I saw that ShortMama had something to say about my P is for Politics post. I respect her opinion and like to read about her cowboy Levi and her sweet little girls. I appreciate that she reads what I write and actually cares what I say. The challenge I always have with controversial topics is that I don't really want to "get into it" with most people. I certainly don't want to tangle with someone like Amanda who I like so much. That's what husbands are for :)
But I do want to clarify something - I am NOT saying that everyone who doesn't agree with President Obama is racist. I so, so, so am not saying that. There are certainly things he has said that I can't stand behind. What I AM saying is that I am mortified by the lack of respect that is being spread in our Nation, particularly the lack of respect that is shown for the President. Racist or not, the leader of the most powerful Nation in the world deserves the respect that every other President has been allowed. Period
There are lots and lots of good things going on in my blog world and I am so happy to have found so many cool new friends. Only 8 more letters of the alphabet and I am back to being random! What I'm best at . . .
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Has she suffocated him with only a pink poodle pillow and a sly grin?
Did he lock her outside and and the paper boy swept her away?
I forgot. They're not even here. They had a sleepover. Both of them.
Oh what should I do with such unexpected bliss? Sleep? I can't. Run? I don't wanna. Coffee and paper? Maybe . . .
Oh, I know. I'll clean. So sad. So true. To clean the floors without immediate footprints on shine and vacuum without begging someone to move is it's own form of therapy.
Thank you to Grandma & Grandpa for my clean floors. I Love You
Friday, September 18, 2009
Recently I stood in my kitchen and cried over the division in America. That's pathetic. It was when our private Catholic school called on a Sunday afternoon to let us know that we could "opt out" of our children arriving at school on time and viewing the Presidential address on education. Are you kidding me? Did anyone call my parents at home when it was time for Ronald Reagan to make a speech that would bore us out of our Jr High minds? No. It was never considered. Ever. Did we shield the recently adolescent population from George W. Bush's ridiculous grammar and ignorance on global events? Nope. They saw the whole thing on network television and replayed over and over on YouTube. Even typing this fires me up so much that I am willing to get right in the face of any right wing racist jack ass started all the hoopla. IT IS WRONG.
Will I declare myself a fully liberal Democrat who thinks Obama is the messiah? Absolutely not. You won't ever see a bumper sticker on my car promoting the change that he promises. I think believing that one man can fix an entire nation's problems is just as ignorant as thinking that if you play the lottery every week you'll eventually win. Not my thing. The odds are simply against us. Change will happen when everyone decides to take responsibility for themselves and their children. All of their children. All of the time. THAT would be a positive change. And raising a generation of gracious, well educated children would go a long way towards encouraging change in this country. And THAT is my problem.
Our kids, MY KIDS, are being brought up in a world where respect is a rare commodity. The man that WE THE PEOPLE elected to run our country deserves respect. Whether or not your Great, Great Granddaddy would roll over in his grave (yeah, I said it. I grew up in the South. I get it) to see a black man addressing the nation is irrelevant. He IS the President. He deserves our respect and support. And our children deserve to learn that an adult in a position of authority should not be disrespected. Never. Ever. Not their bus driver, their crazy aunt, the President. It doesn't matter. The person in charge is there for that moment for a reason and they are biologically required to respect and obey. The idea that they can "opt out" of that requirement is ludicrious to me. Even when their parents didn't vote for him.
I am not, nor will I ever, say that you have to agree with every single thing that comes from any leader's mouth. I certainly don't. What I can't tolerate is that there's an entire generation of Americans who are being led to believe that the democratic system is irrelevant and respect is directly linked to personal beliefs. We're not going to survive like that people. It just won't work.
Stepping off my soapbox now. Have a nice weekend
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Dear Alarm Clock ~
You are evil and rude. It's still dark outside, I'm snuggled up to the one and I love and there you go blasting your noise to the world. Do you know what it takes to cover the circles under these eyes every damn morning? Is it possible that we could make a deal? You nudge me gently with a warm cup of coffee in your hand and I let you live another day. Deal?
Quite Grudgingly Yours,
The Truly Tired Mama Who's Life You're Ruining
Dear Fundraising Chairperson ~
Bless your heart. I know you signed up for your post because everyone needs something to do. But, my goodness. Really? We all pay an obscene amount of money each month for our neatly pressed, uniform clad angels to occupy the hallowed halls of their school AND we additionally pay a stipend that guarantees the school fundraising dollars. Do you really think I am going to haul my kids around the neighborhood in a wagon to peddle chocolate covered peanuts and curling ribbon? Please get a clue and stop sending home notes. I'm losing patience. And by the way, my gift wrap is from Target. They have great patterns and it goes on sale. Often. Back off.
Charmed, I'm sure,
On the Way to Destitute and Homeless with Well Educated Children
Dear Sophia ~
Oh princess . . . First the hair. Not a cool move, but I had to let it slide. Anyone who says "because I want to look like Grandma" is bound to get off the hook. You clever girl. But the disasterous morning routine every single day is getting old. School starts at the same time each weekday morning and sleeping an extra half hour won't fly. Also, you wear the same thing every day. A meltdown over exactly which pair of white socks are most comfortable is unacceptable. My heart hurts all day after I scream at you, but a girl can only take so much. Pretend like you love the socks and no one gets hurt. Capish?
Your Rapidly Losing Patience Hairdresser and Laundress
Dear Kramer & Kate ~
You idiots are starting to get to me in a very big way. I know that we're dog people and we take photos of you just like you're our children, but come on. You know there's nothing in the lunch box when you drag it out of the backpack, but then you haul it under the table to eat the empty ziploc bag. I know that Costco dog food has more nutritional value than that and the holes in the lunch box are a little ghetto. Just because I don't stomp on your paws when you're sleeping doesn't mean I don't notice. You should start being more careful. I hear Michael Vick is home again and looking for new companions. Hmm mm - get it?
Puppy Dog Kisses to You Both
If you've got something to say to someone special you can head over to ShortMama's and link up, too. It feels good!!
Arm One is for loving ~ calm those fears, kiss those tears, tell him he's the one
Arm Two is for working ~ sign here, fly there, pretend you're having fun
Arm Three is for homemaking ~ dust this, bake that, adjust the frame just right
Arm Four is for memory making ~ look this way, step over there, can I upload these tonight?
Arm Five is for playing ~ apply sunscreen to him, find a hat for her, the tickets are right here
Arm Six is for resting ~ close the shutters, lock the door, a quiet moment's near
Arm Seven is for friend keeping ~ send the card, make the call, the effort is so crucial
Arm Eight is for me ~ care for your skin, keep your teeth clean, aging is just brutal!
Knowing that six more hands won't help I'm going to have to keep moving with the two I am lucky enough to have. It would be nice though to have an extra one to hold my drink while I'm trying to take a photograph and wrap a birthday gift simultaneously . . .
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
I am NOT interested in making lunches out of nothing. Again.
It is NOT charming to me that my 5 year old cut her own hair. I do NOT want to take her to get it evened up because I am NOT sure the end result is going to be flattering.
I do NOT want to take 3 ibuprofen for this headache just so I can drive them to school. It is NOT exciting to me that I have a stack of to do's on my desk that I am NOT going to get through today, although I will NOT eat lunch.
It is NOT my favorite thing that I committed to blogging through the alphabet every week day in September. I am NOT a quitter, but this is NOT what I want to do right now.
I am NOT proud of myself for being such a crabby bitch. Tomorrow will NOT be this bad.
I'm NOT so sure
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
the center of my universe and the root of everything good to me.
the most difficult, exhausting, rewarding and honorable title I have ever held. It defines me.
I am inspired to be the other half of something good. Being Mrs. means that I am part of something bigger than myself and doesn't allow me to be selfish. I need that and delight in hearing it out loud.
The moments are a rush and greedily absorbed. Only the memories remain when the moment is over and are what we have to cherish at the end of each day.
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Spending time with old friends and new acquaintances is a sobering reminder of the challenges and beauty of living day to day. Dating, dirty divorce details, single parenthood . . . The list goes on and on and it's exhausting. How can living be sooooo good and so painful simultaneously? How does an uncertain life become a better one?
I live happily and comfortably. I love my husband and children unconditionally, work hard and play often. I've heard we make it look easy. It's not, but we try hard. My friends are turning to me for advice and I have none. Not because I am not brilliant (because I SO AM ~ wink, wink) but because I think everyone's version of good is different. I've not walked a mile in their shoes and don't want to pretend to know what it will take to make it work for them.
Am I grateful to be living here and now?
You really have no idea. Really.
Do I know how to make great last or make not great go away?
Not at all.
I am living right now with all of my heart, wherever I am. Tomorrow I will give what I've got to that. The alternative to life on Earth does not scare me, but this is too good to pass up while it's mine. I am madly in love with the chance to live here and now will do whatever I can to cherish what I have. That's the advice I want my friends to take. Life is too short not to.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
I am, at times, irrational and sharp tongued. I make poor choices, use the most terrible language and judge quickly. I AM the naughty and selfish marionette that Jiminy was sent to protect.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
When I moved to California in 2004 my Nanny mailed me a handwritten letter every single week. I cherished that more than anything in my life at the time. It was then that I decided I would always be in touch. I didn't want to lose my connections after I relocated 3000 miles away to a place where I knew no one but E. On a good day I can still say that I am really good about being in touch. But there are connections that can't be made as easily after time and distance take hold.
Enter Facebook. Two days ago I became a "friend" with my college roommate. I have not seen or spoken to her since I left Tallahassee 15 years ago. We had some amazing times together and I have absolutely no hard feelings toward her. Time and distance took their toll on our relationship and we lost touch. Her name has come up a few times recently as my close girlfriends and I prepare for our Girls Weekend. I couldn't remember if she had a reason not to want to connect with me. How sad life is sometimes. Now we have reconnected and I am thrilled. I love looking at the photos of her 8 month old son, Bryson. It feels good to be back in touch.
Human contact makes the world go round for me. I'm a hugger, hand holder, cheek toucher. Not everyone, but I am sure I would touch your arm if we met. It's me. Don't judge. In touch is a phone call out of the blue or a well timed greeting card. Being in touch is what fuels me and drives me through the days when all of the people in my world seem like aliens. Facebook chat will never replace that, but it's a great starting point. Today I might be in love.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw.
"I just wanted to be sure of you."
Is there anything more geniune than the innocent, gentle touch that lets you be sure of your companion? Be sure you make the time to hold a hand today. Someone may need to be sure of you.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
How do I get past that?
I work hard and give with my whole heart to my family and friends. I genuinely try every single day to make myself worthy of the good life. Yet still lurking in the back of my mind is the fear that it could all disappear at any moment. I'm just not sure that I am good enough to deserve how good everything else is in my life.
If I listened more closely to God would he tell me the answer?
Do I really want to know the answer?
The only answer I can come up with on my own is that maybe a glad heart makes me worthy of all that is so good. I want it to be so. I will live it. I will cherish the good. I will always work harder to be good. Life is too good not to.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
College football - GO SEMINOLES!!
Back to school clothes
Chili and cornbread
Blankets over cold toes on the couch
Hot chocolate for dessert
Looking forward to the holidays
Every season holds it's own magic and every year there is something new and exciting about each one as my kids explore their own agendas. In my own heart fall is always the favorite. Can hardly wait!!!
The house at the beach, the brand new car, the diamond earrings; all because of E. These things are very literal. He works hard and takes good care of me and our family. I do owe all of those things to him and cherish them all. But they could each disappear in a second and I would still have everything.
The warm~hearted, hilarious seven year old athlete with a thing for Star Wars.
The darling blue eyed princess that bathes her Barbies in the sink.
The warm touch and unspoken words of love that come with trust and time.
I was 19 when I met "E" and I was one wild mess of a girl back then. Careless. Irresponsible. Unfocused. He has spent a lot of time saving me from myself in the last fifteen years. I'm sure he had no idea what he was in for. I am eternally grateful for his patience and acceptance of my wreckless love for him. We'd have never survived without them both.
I want to be a better person every single day. I have everything I never knew I wanted. Everything is because of "E".
Thursday, September 3, 2009
2009 is the year of Disney for us.
It does not go unnoticed by me that there are children and families who have never been to Disneyland. I recognize that our ability to go anytime we want is truly a blessing.
Riding the Tram with Nana
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
I physically say this to myself. A LOT. I am spoiled. And unrealistic. And can find myself headed down the most pathetic pity party path ever if I don't occasionally talk myself out of it. I have a good friend who asked me recently -
"How do you do it all and you're still so happy about it? You amaze me."
I was embarrassed by the compliment and made a joke and told her I was faking it. I always joke when I am embarrassed. We laughed and went about our business as if that were the truth.
But it's not. And I'm not. Faking it. I choose to see the good in everything that I have to avoid the pity party that lurks behind every door.
Do I wish some things were different or better? Absolutely.
Am I better served to actively recognize that I have got it made in so many ways? Positively.
I want a housekeeper that keeps the laundry done, the dishes out of the sink and the floors clean.
I choose to be thankful for my warm and sometimes beautiful home near the beach. I choose to be grateful for the food that made the dishes dirty and the traffic that keeps my floors from sparkling. It means we are nourished and I am not alone.
I wish my kids would clean up behind themselves, always use their manners and remember that they should brush their teeth every.single.day without being asked twice.
I choose to fall to my knees and thank God for the home where they feel safe to leave a mess, their imaginations and personalities that overlap their manners sometimes and their healthy little bodies that sustain their energy.
I think sometimes it would be nice to have that husband that sends flowers for no reason and calls me on Tuesday afternoon just to tell me that he's thinking of me.
I choose to love like crazy the husband that God gave me and praise him for being such a great Dad to our children and for paying our bills on time every month. I choose to make time for him, just him, so that we can constantly reconnect and remember why we became a couple in the first place.
I choose to be happy that the body and mind I have are carrying me through the most amazing time of my life.
I'm still working on something to divert my attention from the handbag . . . No one's perfect.
Case in point - my spunky little blue eyed girl. I call her spunky when she is singing at the TOP OF HER LUNGS at home or in the car. Or when she is dishing it out to her older brother and his eyes are begging me for mercy. She is no shrinking violet. Here. But get this girl in a new situation and she is the tiniest church mouse you've ever seen. Today is her first day of school at St. Edward's.
On the way to orientation yesterday she was all big and bad seeing her brother off on his first day. Sassy walk, a quick hand over the shoulder as he departs for class . . . Spunky. We get to her classroom for the meet and greet with her teacher and she won't even walk inside. What? She is plastered to the wall in the hallway furiously shaking her head no. Where's the little chick from the drop off line? Forget about spunk kids, we've got a problem.
I realize that it's scary for her and I want to be there for her.
Well, actually I WANT to say"Suck it up, sister and get in there. This is only the beginning."
BUT, the Super Sweet Mama in me says
"Come on Baby Girl. Show me how brave you are."
Now my girl may not be inherently brave, but she sure does love a challenge. I know what it takes and now she's gonna rise to the occasion. And she says
"No. I'm not brave. I don't want to."
Oh brother . . .
How do I teach brave? What do I need to learn to be able to say it right to her?
If I could hug her tight and transfer brave to her sweet little heart I would. But I can't. And it hurts. I don't want her to be afraid and nervous and unfriendly. I want to see her throw half a wave over her shoulder and say
"See Ya, Mama!"
But, I'm just not sure I'm brave enough to let her go.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
With all of that in mind, I asked Sarah if I could borrow her fantastic idea for a month long writing exercise. She published Learning My Letters at the end of last year and wrote her way through the alphabet. I don't have nearly the writing talent that she does, but I liked the commitment of the exercise and the scope of the project. With her blessing I will be writing my own version of the alphabet in September. The timing seemed right as both of my favorite subjects are heading to school and I am learning more and more every day about the woman God intended for me to be. Please follow me throughout September for One Foot in the Alphabet.
I've definitely got some learning to do.
Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. ~ Henry Ford