Wednesday, July 6

The End

When I was growing up, I kept diaries. Sort of.

I kept them much the same way I post on this blog--in waves. Hit or miss. Sometimes writing every day and sometimes going weeks (or months) without recording anything at all. And I would continue to do this until eventually, I would turn the page of the journal and find myself at the back cover with no more room to write.

So I would purchase a new book and continue--on fresh pages. A new chronicle, even as it was a continuation of the old.

And I could look at all of those volumes and tell you which one I wrote in when my parents were getting divorced and which one contained the girly, mushy, teenage memories of my first kiss. One sporadic story of my childhood contained in several volumes.

For awhile now it I have had the feeling that maybe I have come to the virtual "last page" of this blog. That it is time to start a new volume.

Not because I've literally run out of space, but because there is something fresh and new and promising about a blank journal where the spine crackles a little bit when you open it. There's something about how the pen feels on that first page that reminds you that today and all the days that will follow are just a little bit different than yesterday. Perhaps they contain a fresh and new story.

So I'm going to "shelve" this volume of the cyber-chronicle of my life and start a new one. And I can't wait to see how it unfolds.

You'll find it


I'd love it if you'd stop by!

Saturday, June 25

Getting Out of the Way

As the five of you who read this regularly can tell, I've been having a bit of a "blog dry spell."

It isn't that I don't have things to write about. I do. I have a long list of drafts that are started but not finished. They are either too long, too short, too quippy, not quippy enough, too much information, not enough information, and the list goes on and on ad naueseum.

So I sit and write nothing--and feel guilty about it.

Which is really crazy. I started this blog for chronicle the crazy life I live, since I can't seem to get a scrapbook or photo album put together to save my life. :o)


This morning, while drinking a cup of coffee and reading, I came across this quote by Ray Bradbury:

"Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way."

Maybe I'll give that a try.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, May 14

Info from the Inside...

Okay, so you know how sometimes, the catcher calls "time out" in a baseball game and then heads to the mound to have a chat with the pitcher?

I've always wondered what they say up there. I assumed it had something to do with what kind of pitch to throw the batter has been hitting, etc.

Well today I found out.

My son's team was in the bottom of the last inning of their game. We were up 9 to 3, and there were 2 outs on the board.

And the pitcher had done a great job all game. But he was starting to throw a few more balls...and a few less strikes. And he was starting to get flustered.

My son (the catcher) called a "time out." He jogged up to the pitcher's mound, said something to the pitcher, and then jogged back to home plate.

The pitcher smiled. In fact, he was still trying to hide his smile as he wound up for his next pitch.

Strike one! Strike two! Strike three! Game over. Bullpups 9, the other team 3.

So on the way home, I asked my son,

"What exactly did you say to Cole on the pitcher's mound back there?"

My son's reply:

"I just told him: 'I see you're not having fun, anymore. Frankly, that's really putting a damper on my evening.' "

And I figured he had just advised him to picture the other team in their underwear.

Thursday, April 14

My Journey Around the Sun

I just finished a book called The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.

I will confess—I read this because a dear friend thrust it into my shaking hands a few weeks ago and said, “I picked this up at Costco. You should read it.” To which I replied, “I don’t have time to read books right now. I haven’t really read anything all year!”

Steph said, “Fine. Just read the ‘A Note to the Reader.’ It’s only a page.” I took the book from her and stuck it in my purse.

A short side-note about my purse: Stuff goes in and rarely comes out. So I carried this book around in my purse for a better part of a week—rooting around it to find car keys, my phone, lip gloss, Altoids…you get the idea.

And then at some point I had a few minutes, so I pulled it out and read ‘A Note to the Reader.’ And then I read ‘Getting Started.’ Then ‘January,’ ‘February,’…you get the point…until before I realized it, I had finished the entire thing in a weekend. More or less.

This post really isn’t about this book, although it was very good and I will need to obtain my own copy after I return this one to my dear friend.

Ms. Rubin has a list of what she calls “Secrets of Adulthood”—lessons she learned with some difficulty while growing up.

So although I don’t think these are necessarily “Secrets of Adulthood,” here are 38 things that I have learned on my “journey around the sun," thus far:

1. Always say “May I please have _______________.” and “Thank you” when ordering food. You may be the first person a waiter or waitress hears this from in his/her day.This is also a big hit in the college cafeteria line.

2. And the corollary—tip 20%. The hourly wage for waitstaff is disgusting.

3.The days are long, but the years are short.

4.A vowel in a closed syllable is short; a vowel in an open, accented syllable is long.

5.It is called heartbreak because that experience causes the organ that pumps the blood to your body to feel an actual, physical, stop-your-breath kind of pain.

6.You will remember the times that you were punished unfairly for something you didn’t do. However you probably won’t remember near the number of times that you should have gotten busted but didn’t.

7.It is easier to remember information that has been put to a song.

8.There is a fine line between waiting too long to take care of something and “jumping the gun.” Both are bad practices.

9.There is healing power in tears.

10.There is healing power in laughter.

11.A negative number multiplied by a negative number is a positive number.

12.Most things taste better if they are homemade from scratch. Brownies just might be the exception.

13.Emulating Christ and being a Christian are not necessarily the same things.

14.Fostering a love of reading in children pays big dividends.

15.Make sure you have a couple of friends who will tell you the hard things and will call you on your crap.

16.Smile with your eyes. Share your smile with others. Often. Never underestimate the power of a genuine smile.

17.Feeling like you’ve been picked last for the kickball team is just as painful at 37 as it is at 7.

18.Your taste buds will change. I have come to love sweet potatoes, eggplant, Brussels sprouts, and a well-made sage and onion stuffing. I now detest Maraschino cherries, Cool Whip, blueberry pancakes, and (sorry, Mom) peanut butter and apple jelly sandwiches.

19.Always have a sweater, an umbrella, and an ice scraper in your car.

20.It is possible to love someone and not like them very much.

21.The opposite of love is indifference.

22.Multi-tasking isn’t as effective as it appears to be.

23.Once fat cells are created, they are always there…even after you lose weight. They just become “skinny” fat cells—waiting for junk to fill them up again.

24.Your metabolism will slow down. You won’t always be able to eat junk and never exercise. Prepare for this by fostering healthy eating/exercise habits when you are young.

25.Don’t expect it to last forever. Everything ends and that’s okay. And it’s okay to celebrate even those things that end.

26.If you pour Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup on someone’s car windows, it will ooze down into the door mechanism, and every time the windows are rolled down or up, chocolate will smear on them.

27.Reading Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day after a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day does make you feel better, whether you’re 3…8…or 38.

28.Writing “wash me” on a dirty car with your fingers causes the tiny particles of dirt to act as a sand paper of sorts and permanently damage the finish of the vehicle.

29.Words in the English language don’t end in v. The “e” at the end of “have” isn’t there to make the vowel long. It’s there to keep the word from ending in a v.

30.Recreational companionship is a basic need of most men in a relationship.

31.Children can tell when you aren’t really listening to them.

32.People don’t want my opinion nearly as often as I want to give it to them.

33.Vodka + Kahlua = a very nice “after five” drink.

34.It is possible to run 13.1 miles and actually enjoy it.

35.Once you complete a task in a relationship, it becomes your job. Exercise caution when completing tasks in relationships. :o)

36.It is easier to obtain forgiveness than it is to obtain permission.

37.When human beings behave badly, that behavior is almost always driven by fear, hunger, or exhaustion.

38.It is a woman’s prerogative to change her mind. Because really, that prerogative belongs to everyone.

Thursday, April 7

Bad Company Corrupts Good Moral Character

I have these two fabulous friends. My connection to them is one of those stories where somewhere along the way all of us politely said "yes" to a potentially awkward situation, got kids together to meet and play, and amazing connections formed almost instantaneously. Too many years to count later, even though lives are busy and we see each other as a group rarely, it is still a great time when we do.

These friends are sisters--preacher's kids.

Two years ago, when the three of us got together, we did this:

(This may have been the beginning of my midlife crisis)

Yesterday, we got together again. And we decided to do this:

(Hopefully, this is the end of my midlife crisis)

I'm pretty sure I'm a bad influence on these poor, sweet PKs--I'm sure they never would have thought of either of these crazy shenanigans on their own--right, ladies? :o)

My apologies, Pastor and Mrs. H!

Monday, April 4

If You're Lookin' for a Fight...

assign the task of cleaning the kitchen after dinner to three of your children.

This is a 100% foolproof way to:
~turn talking into yelling.
~hear the words "jerk...stupid...shut up...idiot" hissed in what children believe to be a whisper but I can hear perfectly fine.
~start a flood of tears.
~have someone get popped in the face, arm, etc. with a dishtowel (didn't Bill Cosby mention that in one of his stand-up comedy routines?).
~ensure at least one broken dish.
~send someone to bed early.

Wish that someone could be Mom.

Thursday, March 31

Take Five

I was talking to one of my dear friends today, who also happens to be a work colleague. As we were visiting, she shared a gem of a concept that another mutual friend and colleague had shared with her.

This friend said that she tries to keep life simple by thinking in terms of "five."

"Where do I want to be in five weeks?"

"Where do I want to be in five months?"

"Where do I want to be in five years?"

For some reason, this really resonated with me. "I can do that," I thought to myself.

And as life seems to be spinning in such a vastly different direction than I expected as of late, it feels like an appropriate exercise.

So here goes...the very rough draft of my "five." (Any and all parts of this are subject to change without notice. :o) )

Five Weeks~
In Five Weeks, I am looking forward to:
~celebrating a friend's graduation from college.
~celebrating the birth of Brian's newest nephew.
~experiencing firsthand the truth that I am clinging to as a promise at the moment..."time heals all wounds."
~logging lots and lots of "running in the wild" miles.
~counting down the days unitl the end of the school year.
~baseball season in full-swing.
~dance spring performance in full-swing.
~my nephew's impending 15th birthday.

Five Months~
In Five Months, I am looking forward to:
~a trip "across the pond" with Brian to see my brother (and Kevin Spacey) in Richard III.
~having completed a digital SLR class, so that I can take advantage of my lovely camera and capture some really great pictures in the UK.
~feeling relaxed after a couple of months of summer with my family.
~feeling closer to God and closer to embracing the plan that He has for my life instead of fighting it so hard.
~teaching yet another teenager how to drive?!?!--Power of positive thinking, right??

Five Years~
Five years is harder. :o)
In five years I am looking forward to:
~having no one child will be in college and another will be on his way.:o)
~planning a high school graduation celebration for my second-born.
~enjoying the next phase of my relationship with my oldest...who will no longer live at home.
~having discovered my passion...the thing that drives me and makes me feel fulfilled.
~having discovered my ministry...the thing that stirs my heart to "give back" and show the love of God to my fellow man.
~the final couple of years with children in the house.
~enjoying the fact that people always think I look younger than I am. :o) So far, that hasn't been such an amazing gift. But I'm really expecting the payoff to start in about five years. :o)