Friday, August 14, 2015

Stream of Consciousness about the Here and Now

I neglect this blog, I know I do, and yet, it is actually quite substantially read, especially compared to anything else I write. I find that I only can find the effort to post pictures or write about big dramatic events and the day to day nuances get left in the dust.

It's sad really, that I take these days for granted, and I have thought about that a lot recently for a variety of reasons. I am living my dream, truly. If you asked me what I wanted to be in high school, one of the things I would have told you was a mom. I spent years waiting only somewhat patiently for the "right" time to try, only to discover that when the time was right, based on our understanding, that God said not yet. Then I spent years actively working towards the dream, trying to get pregnant and working through the intense process of an international adoption, only to find myself pregnant after all when I thought I had truly come to terms with not experiencing that part of life.

Now here I am, two great kids sleeping in their rooms. Two kids that light up my days, that make me laugh, that are so creative and so much fun to be around, and I don't write about it. I throw pictures up when I can or talk about the big, non-essential, not big dreams that I waited for for so long.

The best reason I can come up with is that I am happy. Truly, resonantly happy with my day to day routine. The days that I felt like I would burst if I couldn't write a long cathartic blog about how I was feeling are gone, for the most part. I have dreams, I have aspirations and goals, but they don't damper my current joy with my family.

I accomplished my marathon goal, I am working towards my writing goals, I am pursuing a more generalized goal of strength building now, and of course, my long time goal of maintaining that balance of mom and housewife and time for me that keeps everyone happy.

Grace, sweet Grace, is generally having less tantrums, but she still has intense anxiety at nap time and when people she cares about leave. We had gotten to a point where she would take naps without me, but for some reason she has recently reverted, and needs my physical touch to be able to get to sleep. She loves sculpting, and is getting pretty good at it. She can be content for a long time with just some playdough or silly putty to continually mold into different things, and will tell you all about her dolphin or mermaid or whatever else she created at the time. Without her top two sculpting materials, she can be content with molding a napkin or toilet paper (though we are trying to curb the toilet paper use and aim more for the silly putty when the need to mold hits).

She was taking dance, for a long time, but at the start of the summer started doing gymnastics and gymnastics camp, which she loves. Though if you ask her, she prefers the class over the camp. She says it is because of the art room and she doesn't like to do art (and don't even get me started on her sculpting being art... it isn't to her, and don't try to tell her otherwise), but I think it is because I leave during camp, but stay during class. This September she will be going to preschool three days a week instead of two, and at her request, is no longer doing dance, but wants to do soccer instead. So she is signed up for a soccer team, and will have practice one or two days a week and a game once a week. We shall see how that goes, but she really wanted it, and is old enough to start.

Remington is a handful at almost two, and he really wants to get his own way or he will give you "Remington face," but is generally a happy kid. He still loves sports and on a day playing at home will play hockey, soccer, baseball, and basketball, all without prompting. When he plays hockey at home, he still asks for skates from time to time, and is really improving with them. His favorite is basketball, and every time Blake calls to say he is on his way home, Remington takes the phone and asks if they can go to the basketball court. If Blake says yes, then he gives me the phone back, and goes away and plays again.

He is also in a gymnastics class and loves it. His favorite parts are jumping and hanging. He knows his coach's name, and is really happy to see her, and cries when he thinks it is a gymnastics time and it isn't. He apparently really loved our recent trip to the fair, and still, almost two weeks later, thanks God at night like this, "Thank you God, we go vroom vroom, thank you God, got the Ducky, thank you God caught the fishy." He got to go on a ride that was a pretend car, and played a look under the duck game and a catch the fish game, and apparently they left a huge impression on him!

A nightly tradition for us now is to play a couple of rounds of hide and seek with the kids before bed. They LOVE it, but are not good hiders yet, and frequently are giggling so much that you can hear them even before you see them.

Most nights, I am either working on writing something, playing a computer game with Blake or getting through the books on my Rory Gilmore reading list. Blake's passion continue to be in either video games or sports. We are all happy, and loving life as a family.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Skipped June... so Pictures first

Remington is likely to wake up any second... with Grace close behind. So, this post will be pictures first, captions if I have time.
 My brother got his masters!
 Date with Remington above
Pictures from Temecula vacation below



 She is so proud of her tall tower!






 How the kids slept in the hotel
 Above- Blake had to have computer time on the trip
Below- Blake opens Father's Day presents








 Remington LOVES batting, especially being pitched to, doesn't love the tee.
 Angels baseball games on back to back nights






 Above- watching finding Nemo on the field after the game.
 Below- Remington also loves playing basketball with dad like so:


 Both kids in gymnastics at least once a week, often more.
 Remington's favorite part- hanging

Friday, May 22, 2015

Serenity Prayer for the Body

If you haven't heard of the Serenity Prayer, it starts like this:
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference." -Reinhold Niebuhr

(It is actually longer, but that's the part I care about.)

I am tall. Both of my parents are tall, my brother is tall, and I am as well. If I don't order jeans in the "long" size, they won't fit me. I had to wear flats for my wedding or pay for them to lengthen my dress.

In high school, my height made me slouch in pictures next to my first boyfriend, who was shorter than me. It also meant that my prom date had to stand on a box for the picture. So there is really no arguing the point that I am tall.

It used to really bother me. I would joke about giving some of my height to my shorter friends. Even now, Blake doesn't like me to wear heels because we are the same height, and if I add a heel, I am actually taller than he is.

But my height is in the category of "things I cannot change." Over time, I have come to have peace with my height and be thankful for the advantages it gives, and I try to help others when I can, as there have been a number of times I can help someone reach something that they just couldn't quite get.

I also really wanted blue eyes. Not sure why, but I have loved blue eyes for a long time, I am typically attracted to blue eyed guys (both in real people attractions and the celebrities I find attractive), and I wished my eyes were blue too. They aren't. They are brown, though I think growing more hazel with time. (Notice though, I caught a blue eyed guy, and even have a blue eyed son, so that's a win).

I could go on, as I think most people can, with the things about my body that I don't like and can't change, but that isn't my point.

I am also not a "girly girl." I admire people who know how to dress stylish, do their hair, put on makeup, etc. But here's the difference. I could change this. If I put in the time, the effort, the money, etc. I could learn how to do my hair and makeup and I could look put together every day.

I go in waves of trying to work on this area, and deciding that I don't care enough to try. But either way, this is not a "thing I cannot change." I can change it, it just would require more work than I am willing to do.

At the end of the day, the desire to look put together isn't a big issue. It doesn't affect anyone but me, it doesn't hurt anything either way. It doesn't matter which way I decide.

I am currently reading a book called "Fat Land" and it basically explains all of the elements of our nation's rise to obesity.

A lot of it comes down to culture. Our culture has become one that preaches, "Love your body! Accept who you are! Embrace differences!"

I don't disagree with that. As previously mentioned, I need that message to accept my height, accept my brown eyes. My daughter may just need that message to be happy with her hair, or skin color. There is definitely a lot about our bodies that we are born with and we can't change (at least without surgery). Height, skin, eye color, etc. fall under the first part of the prayer. We do need to accept those things about ourselves that we can't change!

But weight and health are not one of them. They are in the next part. "Courage to change the things I can." Our culture, for too long, has preached a positive body image so much that people who are clinically obese and experience a myriad of health issues because of it, still say that it is their body, and they accept who they are, and they love themselves and don't need to change anything.

I am not a doctor. I am not pointing fingers. I am not pointing blame. I will not say to any of my friends, family etc. that any specific person falls under this post. But if a doctor has told you, or you know you are experiencing health problems due to your weight, I urge you to have the courage to change it. The courage to take the time and effort necessary to help yourself to live longer, to stay off medicines, to be there for your kids, your family, and everyone who cares about you.

Here is the real tragedy in this area: we are so afraid, as a culture, to encourage people to eat healthy and exercise for fear of offending them or making them self conscious that we risk losing them early to any of a number of obesity related health problems. We would rather not hurt their feelings? Many people in our nation are dying, physically dying, because of something that CAN be changed.

My hope, my wish, my prayer, for our culture in this area is that we can start finding the courage to speak up, and not put weight and health in the same category as height. That people would see it isn't something to accept about yourself... but something to have the courage to change.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. - See more at: http://www.prayers-for-special-help.com/serenity-prayer.html#sthash.3d

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. - See more at: http://www.prayers-for-special-help.com/serenity-prayer.html#sthash.3dPLatoi.dpuf
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. - See more at: http://www.prayers-for-special-help.com/serenity-prayer.html#sthash.3dPLatoi.dpuf

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Sonnet for May 2015

Grace's first year at preschool is nearly at a close,
while Remington's time at gymnastics has barely begun.
In her weekly dance class, she learns to walk on her toes,
He finds that swinging, climbing and bouncing is lots of fun.

Times spent at home are full of reading books,
followed by a evening walk with dad to the playground to play.
Imagination runs wild at home with little practicing cooks,
when asked to stop, the little boy says, "I walk away."

Superman is the focus of a little boy's delight,
and our daughter loves to look and dream about the distant outer space.
"On top of Spaghetti" is the favorite song at night,
and fights break out when he calls her "Gracie" and not "Grace."

Lisa's focus rests on getting through "Rory's List" some each day,
and Blake's main hope is that the Ducks go all the way.


p.s. apparently the videos posted this way don't have sound... so you can just watch cooking and skating.