Thursday, March 30, 2017

Motherhood: The years are short, but the days are long (unless you are having fun).

These days and and weeks go by fast when life is going good. Do you guys feel that too?

It's spring and the weather is beautiful and all the fabulous blooms are on the trees. The days are longer but seem to go by faster because we can get out and enjoy it.

I find it funny that time passes so quickly when we are happy and practically stands still during the difficult times.

Steve was out of town last weekend. While I couldn't really call it a dark and difficult time in my life as compared to all of the sadness and hurting that many of my friends are experiencing, it was a little bit harder than my usual. And those 3 days felt like a month.

Time just seems to crawl along when you are being stretched. Keeping 3 kids (and myself) alive and fed and chauffeured to all of the places was a stretch for me. I usually have a partner that I can tag when I need a break and that partner was on the beach with his buddies... I'm promise I'm not bitter. Anymore.

So this week has been all about playing catch up. Catching up on the things that I pushed aside during the craziness of last week.

Here is a random fact about me...I live my life with a to do list in my head that never gets smaller. It is always growing and so I never finish it. I am always feeling guilty about what I should be doing at the moment and always always feel behind. It is an exhausting way to live and I need to stop. It goes something like this.

Today I should be outside enjoying the beautiful day. 

I should be exercising. 

I should be mopping the kids bathroom floor because it is sticky and that makes me afraid to go in there without wearing shoes.

I should be folding laundry.

I should be catching up on reading for one of the 4 bible studies in which I am currently a taking part. Why have I committed to 4 bible studies at the same time? Did I subconsciously think that would make me more holy? I don't know why I do these things. 

I should be deleting unread emails because I have such a gigantic amount that it makes some of my friends angry when they see the notifications on my phone. 

I should be returning impulse buys to target and overdue library books. 

Those are the things on my imaginary to do list.

What I actually did today was go to a parent/teacher conference for my 4 year old. It was nice to hear lots of positive feed back and now I feel a little more like a capable parent.

I took that positive thinking and I went to Whole Foods to replace a bottle of eucalyptus oil that I threw away in a one of my random cleaning fits. (Yes my cleaning comes in spastic fits.)

I also bought some of my favorite chicken salad and just ate it on crackers without so much as a plate or napkin. Like a cave person. It was so still delicious. (I know what you are thinking. What about Lent? Well this is a Lent loop hole since technically the rule is no eating at a restaurant, but since WF is a grocery store I think it is legal.)

(Yes I now realize I need to be in serious prayer about the fact that I am searching for "Lent Loopholes". Y'all Lent is long. And thanks to the stretching I mentioned earlier, it seems even longer. Like I feel certain we are on day 81.)

For my next procrastination project I decided to tackle the pile of paper/mail/junk on my kitchen counter. Do you guys have one of these piles? If you don't, I don't know how are you living your life so well, and I need you to come and mentor me....ASAP. The kitchen pile is a thorn in my flesh. It haunts me daily and I can't seem to get rid of it.

Every now and then I go through it and throw away things that have expired or no longer make sense to keep. But just like my email inbox, 20 more will be dropped in their place before the day is over. There has to be some metaphor about my life here, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

I think I will spend the rest of my kid free hours looking up Kids' Summer Camp information and trying to play calendar Tetris to make it work with everyone's schedules. That should take up the last hour before I begin the afternoon carpool shenanigans.

Or maybe I will just sit down and read a book.

March 2012
Quote from our dinner table discussion: "Walt, you smell like 2000 skunk trash"
The ultimate 6 year old insult.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Spring break is here and we are finally wearing coats.

Spring break is officially here. It was time. We all needed it. Therefore everyone in the house is doing their best to stay horizontal and in their pjs as much as possible today.

It's been a few weeks and I'm checking in. It's been a good few weeks. Nothing monumental, but busy. I'll try to hit the highlights in reverse order, because that is how my brain is working today.

1. My daughter started a blog today. It's equal parts precious and exciting. Even though I am in no way a successful blogger, I feel a little proud that she has seen me do something and wants to do it too. She is 11. She hasn't tried to be like me since she was 4. So yeah, this is a pretty big deal to me.

It's a food blog. Her goal is to help me cook dinner, photograph our meals, and write about the experience. In the wake of some pretty epic pre-tween arguments in the last few weeks, this feels like the glimmer of hope I needed. I am the blog administrator and editor which, if regularly read this blog, you know is comical. Editors should have grammar and sentence structure skills, which I don't, unless compared to a 5th grader, which I guess makes this the perfect set up.

I'm not sharing the actual blog with the public for safety reasons. I want her to be able to write and not worry about people knowing her identity. Parenting in the information/digital age is so exhausting.

2. Lent. I grew up super Baptist. Born and raised and born again.... So Lent was a foreign concept to me. In college I remember it being a cool thing to "give up things for Lent", but since those sacrificed things were usually Coke or chocolate, it really seemed more like a Catholic based diet plan than a religious experience.

After listening to the She Reads Truth gals discuss the meaning behind the lent season with Annie Downs on her podcast "That Sound Fun with Annie F. Downs" I decided to look more seriously at the concept of putting aside a delight for a season in order practice leaning into and finding delight in Christ. So I am following along with the SRT ladies as they go through the book of Isaiah. So far so great.

Also, in the spirit of sacrifice, our family has decided to not eat out during Lent. We will eat all meals at home and stick to strict grocery budget. You might be thinking that doesn't sound like much of a sacrifice, but you obviously under estimate how often we eat out and how haphazardly I grocery shop. I make all food decisions based on my current appetite and therefore regularly hit up Chick Fil A and Starbucks on a whim. All that to say, this experience will be out of my comfort zone which is a good thing for exercising my "find contentment in Christ" muscles.

3. Moms' trip. Last weekend I went to Starkville (cue the angels singing the Hallelujah chorus) for a sorority reunion. A girls trip for moms is already a dream, but when the destination is literally the place where dreams came true, it makes it that much sweeter. I love any chance to visit Mississippi State because almost every single memory I have from there is a good one.

My girls Betsy and Cheryl. We have been friends for 20 years.
I don't even know how that is possible since we are only 19. 

So there I was having a great time reminiscing with great friends when I get a call from my son. You see I had missed W's last basketball game for trip which is sad, but I had arranged for grandparents to be there in my place. Not that it matters, but W's team had not won a game all year. They play hard but always came up short. Also, W had not ever scored in a game because he is actually short. Anyway, when I answer the phone he is on the other end talking so fast with excitement. Not only did they win their game, but he even scored! So happy for him. So sad I missed it. That is always my luck. Thank goodness my mom was there to capture a post game smile.

4. We survived another Dr. Seuss Week. I have made my feelings about dress up weeks pretty clear on this blog. Not much left to say about it except I'm glad it is in the past. But here is a picture of my Star Belly Sneetch and Fox in Socks. Despite my feelings on the subject, they always seem to look cute.

5.  I started a new book. And I love it. Rebekah Lyons is adorable and funny and I fell in love with her story when I heard her speak at the Broken and Free Tour. I got the ticket because I love Christy Nockels and Ann Voskamp, but I left with Rebekah's book. Read it. Enjoy it.

I'm sure more has happened in the last few weeks but those are the things that come to mind at the moment. I feel pretty sure that I will have more thoughts on my lent experience since we are only on day 13 of 47. The CFA withdrawals haven't even kicked in and we still have to make it through Spring Break with no fast food.

As for coffee, I'm already researching ways to make my own homemade version of a Mocha Frappuccino.

March 2016
It's very humbling when you over sleep and come downstairs to find your 10 year old is better at adulting than you are.