Sunday, January 30, 2011

Ladies Nite Out

I know it's a Christmas Photo. It's also a reminder that they are the reasons why I do what I do, and why I'm trying to be the best work in progress I can be.

Friday night I found out that my super awesome yoga instructor was doing this "Ladies Night Out" yoga special. It was all of an hour and a half (scheduled) of yoga and journaling and then when it was over we had some wine and cheese and various chocolate delights. I didn't get home until almost 11, and it was WONDERFUL.
First of all, let me just say that Super Yoga Lady Jean is like my own personal therapist...even in a room full of people. She's not one of those hippy dippy yoga leaders either, but she believes in the whole mind body connection thing, and truly, I just feel like a better person after going through the postures and listening to what she has to say when I walk out her door.
And so, I invite you to journal your own thoughts, if you have some nice music and a quiet break in life, to contemplate the questions we contemplated a few days ago. It's been a long while since I've introspected, and I have missed it.
So here are your thoughts for the day/week/month/year:
Acknowledge the abundance in your life. Take a moment to list all the areas where you have much. This can include anything and everything, right down to having something as basic as running water.
Take a moment to give thanks for this abundance. In whatever capacity. You could be thanking a God, a friend, whomever, whatever. How do you say "thank you"?
It's time to clean house, inside and out. Literally and figuratively. Make a list of anything you want to let go of.
*Of course, from an introspective point of view I don't exactly have a list here, more of half a novel written. There really is so much to let go of, isn't there?
Contrast what you want to let go of, and write now about what you want to draw near to you in this year.
Think of one word that you want to personify and be and exalt throughout this new year.
*Okay, so I won't rewrite everything else that I have written because it's personal, like a diary entry. At least it's more personal than this blog (there are SOME things I do keep to myself). However, I will tell you I had two words of how I want to live 2011. The first one is "kindness". Kindness in not only action, but in thought as well. At the end of each yoga session, Jean challenges us to speak our own personal truth and that which is 'true, kind and necessary'. So I have to remember really, the "necessary" part, and in turn, ask myself if what I'm saying is both true and kind. This works well for my friends, but gets tricky around my husband and kids. I'm just sayin'.
The other word I had for 2011 is "phoenix", as in the bird, not the City. Think on that and take it as you will. Definitely food for thought.
So, in case I don't get to blog this week:
Your song of the week this week is: "Orange Sky" by Alexi Murdoch

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Irrational Mom Thoughts

Apparently, I am not as crazy as I would lead myself to believe. Truly. My so called 'irrational" mom thoughts aren't so very irrational after all, thus proving my maternal instincts are superior to...well, at the very least they are superior to my husbands maternal instincts.

10 days ago my daughter woke up leaking green goo from her eyes and my first thought was, "Holy Shit! She's going to go BLIND". Of course I didn't say that out loud, because Jack would be thrown into some sort of panic, so I very calmly took her to the local urgent care because it was Saturday.

They swabbed her eye goo and put her on both oral antibiotics and eye drops. We went home, wiped down EVERYTHING. The following Tuesday urgent care calls us with the lab results, but won't really give me them. The nurse was eating her lunch (which bothers me on a whole other sensory level besides being rude when you're making a professional phone call) and tries to impart how urgent it is I get in contact with my regular doc. Okay, I think, but anytime you do an urgent care visit you're supposed to follow up with your doc. I never do. My doc and I have a good relationship. He knows where I work, and what I do, and so he knows that I'm not an alarmist and can handle routine Pink Eye and ear infections just fine.

Imagine my surprise when an hour after I talked to Lunch Lady Land my regular doc called and basically forced a follow up appt. on me.

Good thing too. Apparently my daughter's lab results came back with a "very rare" form of MRSA and a "Rare" form of influenza. Uh, so once first maternal instinct thought of "Holy Shit, she's going bline" wasn't so off base. Doc said we NEVER see this in the eyes, and so now she's also on this antibiotic we swab up her nose. Google MRSA if you want to read's nasty. We've been reported to the county health dept. and get reswabbed today to get off their "list".

Don't you worry, she's not contagious. And nobody else in the fam got this either. Odd.

It's been one of those weeks. So, inspired my Julz's blog about her swim suit (mine was in similar condition, although not quite bad enough to inspire a wardrobe malfunction, yet) I bought a new workout swim suit. The water was a bit chilly, but I was reminded by why I love swimming yesterday. I felt free. It was wonderful.

Song of the week: Little Lion Man by Mumford and Sons
Check it out. It's a great one for a long run.

Sunday, January 16, 2011


In Yoga, my super awesome and inspiring instructor Jean ends each session with a very informal "Om" to send peace light and harmony out into the world. We also have our hands in a prayer like formation and touch our forehead, to remember the wisdom within, our lips so that we may speak our inner truth and that which is true kind and necessary, and then our hearts to honor the great love within us that we have to give. Then she bows forward and says, "Namaste", and we, the students follow suit.
A rough and bastardized translation of Namaste is, "The light in me recognizes the light in you". It's very metaphorical. The word "light" could be transplanted with other words, such as "God", "Goodness", "Love", etc. Each week for me it means something different, and I am so grateful I have my yoga teachings to fall back on when I need a little inward guidance.
Thursday I had Maddie's 4 year old parent teacher conference. I was glad John wasn't with me, even though he usually comes, because when he really disagrees with something he gets almost borderline belligerent. I do not argue logical arguments with him. It's not worth it. I have my ways to win an argument though...don't you worry.
At Maddie's conference, her teacher recommended she continue on in the preschool junior 5's program for another year. This was a bit of a pill to swallow. Sure, when I was a teacher, I expected parents to follow my recommendations, and as a therapist I often have to explain hard truths and sometimes even bad news to parents, so out of respect for the teacher (who I think is fabulous, by the way) I heard her out and then completely disregarded her recommendations.
Her basis is NOT academically influenced. The girl knows her letters, her sounds, her phone number and can count higher than some kindergartners by rote. Her suggestion is based on the fact that she has a late birthday (August 15th) and that she's small. There may have been something thrown in there about her social emotional issues too, but let's backtrack.
First of all, I do not think my daughter should be held accountable for the sins of her mother (remember that trip to Napa I took while pregnant? To be fair, I was like, 5 minutes pregnant and didn't know it, but still...argh, the GUILT!). Secondly, she shouldn't be held accountable for her father's family genetics. John's grandmother and Aunts on his dad's side are just NOT very big people, and from what I gather looking at pictures, they never were growing up. She has always been on the wrong side of the scale with her weight, and there is nothing I can do about that. I've had every test run, from diabetes to growth hormone tests and she comes out NORMAL. She's just built small. It's how she is. It's how God made her. And maybe some wine helped...but she's exactly the way she is supposed to be. She will always be small, and a year more of preschool will not help that. This I know for sure.
As I said, her teacher mentioned that she may need time to grow socially and emotionally. Trust me when I say her emotional IQ is just fine. She couched this statement with another that stated that if Maddie did go to Kindergarten, she would be successful academically, and would behave fine. The teacher would never have a problem with her, but maybe another year would boost her confidence and really, "let her shine, because she is so shy during group discussions".
Hold the phone. You're recommending I hold her back because she is "shy"? Really? And because unlike the other girls she doesn't exactly have a bestie in the class? I'll address the latter statement first. I think Maddie, for lack of better wording, could really give a shit about the other girls. You have to remember that her best playmate, her older brother is only 13 months older than she is, and so like twins, they have always had each other. Being someone who on occasion has taught social skills classes to kids aged 4 on up, I can reassure you that her social skills when she has a one on one play date are quite age appropriate. She's fine.
But the shyness? Well, anyone who knows Maddie since birth knows that she has always been that way. It is just the way she is wired. She doesn't like groups, doesn't like crowds, and very definitely, does NOT like having to perform-even around adults she knows. And by perform I mean "fake it". Fake happily giving hugs and kisses when you don't want to, fake having a good time just because someone says you should.... She doesn't do it. That partly drives me crazy because I want her to be the wacky social extrovert that I am, yet mostly it makes me proud that my baby girl can stand her ground and doesn't play the fool for NOBODY.
My dear friend Jenny says I am angry about this recommendation. Maybe I am. I don't know. I do know that John was. Just to be clear though, I really love her preschool, and I think her teacher has her best interests at heart. But I know with everything in me, that on this she is wrong. John and I both agree that just because she's shy isn't really a good reason to hold her back, and in anything in life, I really don't ever want to hold her back. Or hold her down. I want her to have wings to fly and grow and just be herself.
The problem is, who she is, and how she is wired is perceived as being a little...mmmm...defective, or in need of fine tuning. I say she is hardwired this way. This is how God made her, and if she is shy, then so what? The light she has within her will see the light in others willing to let her fly and her path will be lit by a beautiful brightness that she will create on her own terms. That's really Maddie in a nutshell...four perfect words that describe her to a T. On. Her. Own. Terms. Always. And so, within reason I'll let her live her life on her own terms. It's a promise.
Namaste my baby girl, Namaste.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

If I Made Resolutions, I Wouldn't Have the TIME to Keep Them Anyway

It is already almost mid January, and I haven't had 3 minutes to sit down and think about what my New Years Resolutions should be. I suppose I could consider them for the Chinese New Year, but I don't even know if that's in February or at the end of this month this year. And is it the year of the Pig again yet?...because I always find it funny to say I'm in the year of the pig.

I've been thinking that my resolution for last year worked out really, really, well. A personal goal of making the world a better place just by being in it, inspired by the letter in the mail from my pastors. So I'm thinking I'm going to try it again. Even if I just do it for ONE person, I resolve to try and make the world a better place. I like how these leaves a lot of leeway for me. It's my kind of goal to set. And maybe it goes without saying that I don't mean making the whole wide world better, because that is impossible, but the small world of one person. Then that person can make another person's world better, and we will all start to pay it forward.

I also really need to make a better effort at making play dates for Nate. He does alright with the neighborhood kids when they're all running around shooting each other with Nerf darts, but the kids are for the most part all older than he is, so it really should go without saying that I'm going to make more of an effort to call his peers and set things up. We had one of his friends over last week, and it was great. Nate was a super host and I got my floors clean. What more could I want?

I suppose I should also resolve to give the Olympic distance tri one more try. The one in Omaha was crazy hard, and there just happens to be one closer to home I could try before I decide that that particular distance is really not for me.

I'm working very hard on resolving to be less of the yelling mom, because quite frankly I've given myself headaches. I hereby make the resolution to save the hardcore yelling for when my kids are doing something purely boneheaded, such as tying bungee cords to the trees and trying to climb them. I wasn't sure if we'd have broken arms or one less eye to see out of, but the yelling certainly got their attention. I hereby resolve to indulge in a glass of wine when I feel a yelling fit a comin' on.

So far so good on the resolving thing. I like what I've got, but could probably add more. Any suggestions are welcome, but I'd love to know what you're planning on doing to make someone elses 2011 better than their 2010, so let's hear how your're going to become a better person by doing THAT.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Apparently, I Suck at House Sitting

To be fair, I suppose it's not something I can really blame myself for, but to be clear, perhaps I am not the best person to ask when you need your animals fed.

For the sake of my friends and some family, I am glad that their 2010 has come to a close. For some it couldn't get any worse. Take for example, my good friends Bill and Deb. In a random sequence of tragic events, to put it in a nutshell, their house caught on fire.

The upside? Actually, there are several:
*The home wasn't destroyed.
*For a short while they had to live in a hotel, which homeowners insurance covered the cost of, but they got to 'move' back home before Christmas.
*Most importantly, no body was hurt.
Second most importantly, our clan of friends really banded together, put some cash in an envelope and sent them a very healthy "we're thinking of you" gift basket.

I like to try and put a positive spin on things. It makes me feel better to put an upswing cast to it, and I was amazed at how generous this group of people is, and how much we really love and care for each other when it counts. I really do know who I can count on in times of need.

Also, not having such a great ending to 2010 was my brother in law. He went on a little trip to Cali, so he asked me and the kids to feed his pet kitties. Sure thing. The kids loved the task, the constant routine of doing it for a week was a good show of responsiblity, and I think I may have nipped the "We want a dog" argument in the bud, because they know realize how much work animals require.

Anywho, when said Bro in Law returned home Sunday, I asked him to text me and let me know if everything went okay. I was amazingly patient, and took good care of those cats, or so I thought. And everyone knows how much I really dislike cats, so this was a big deal for me. I was proud of myself and my ability to help someone out with a rather unpleasant task.

So, Sunday night the phone rings around 11, and it's my BIL saying that he was robbed. And do I have his garage door opener? What???!!!! What garage door opener? The one that was left on the table....that I never saw. What was taken? The t.v....that I had NO idea was even missing. Or the computer hidden in the kitchen. Or the gaming systems and games and movies. I mean, it's not like I rifled through cabinets looking for things to be missing.

Ugh. What a mess for him. And of course I feel guilty because I should have somehow known. But I didn't. Again, most importantly, nobody was hurt (because no one was in the house, but the gangsta's must've been aware of the fact that nobody was home for the week). I'm still waiting for the local authorities to start questioning me and the kiddos, but apparently this was the second break in that happened recently in this neighborhood in the past few months. Because it seems the thing to do, I'm going to blame these a*hole criminals on the economy.

So what to do for him? Because I'm pretty sure a fruit basket isn't going to help, I've invited him over for pizza/movie/Star Wars night hoping Nate ropes him into a dastardly game of Super Hero Squad Chutes N Ladders. And I suppose I'll start praying that 2011 gets better for him.

As for me and my immediate family, 2010 was a good year. We all learned important life lessons and are better people for it. We got a little closer to each other. We laughed out loud. And we loved indescribably. Cheers to 2011 to be even better than what we thought we could be!