Thursday, October 4, 2012

Life, Death, and a cloud.

Today, I attended a funeral of someone, whom it seemed, was much too young, too active, too involved in life, to have actually died. 

But, he did.  He died on Sunday.  Unexpectedly.

And since I got the news, a strange cloud of...something...has been surrounding me.

A cloud that is heavy, deep, and draining. And, no matter how hard I try to wish it away, or tell myself, that I shouldn't feel it (because I am not a close friends or family), or try to ignore it, the cloud remains.

A cloud best described as a swirling mix of...
  • Sadness...for his family and his friends, 
  • Shock...that this man, who I had been in a meeting with on Thursday, talked to on Friday, and who sent me an email Sunday morning, was no longer alive,
  • Vulnerable...and acutely aware of the fragility of life. (of my life, my husband's life, my childrens' lives, my parents' lives, my siblings' lives, my friends' lives, etc...) and,
  • Memories...of moments past, and of loved ones who have passed.
Surely, I am not alone (at least, I sure hope that I am not) in feeling this.  And, I know that it is probably a normal reaction to the situation. 

What I don't know, and what I have been struggling with, is what I should do with this cloud... 
But, I suppose, there is nothing to do with this cloud. 
Nothing other than to see it, acknowledge it, and allow it to be.

So that is what I will do.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Really??? I thought the Mommy Wars were over.

I don't often get bothered by much.  I can let most things roll off my back and find the humor in it.

But recently, I have seen this card floating around facebook and, I have to say, I don't really find it funny.

It's not so much that I am bugged by the moms who posted it.  More so, I am annoyed that the sentiment of this card even exists. 

I mean, REALLY?

I thought the so-called "Mommy Wars" of Working Moms vs. Stay-at-Home moms were over.

But, this card leads me to believe that I was wrong. 

So I wonder...
Why do we perpetuate a divide between moms who stay-at-home and those who are employed?

Why, when motherhood is so hard, do we expend energy tearing each other down?

Why do we feel the need to one up each other and prove how much busier we are than someone else?

Why do we harshly judge one another?

Why?  I just don't get it!

Regardless of whether we spend our work day in the home, or outside of the home, we are all moms.

...Moms who struggle to find balance in the chaos of life.

...Moms who have made our own personal choices about how to raise our children.

...And, moms who question, from time to time, whether or not our parenting decisions (including whether to go to work or not) are the right ones.

Aren't we all just moms who are trying to doing our best for ourselves, our kids, and our families?

Perhaps I am living in a kumbaya-ish world, but I think that life would be better if we, as moms, simply supported and respected each other - even if (dare I say "especially if") our decisions are different!

Please, tell me I am not alone in this?!!?

Monday, June 18, 2012

What a difference a year makes!

We are on vacation on the shores of North Carolina!  Last summer we were here, about this same time, and it is amazing to me the difference a year makes!

Last year, the boys really couldn't read...This year, books and independent reading helped make the 13 hour drive a smooth one!

Last year, it took the boys a while to warm up to the idea of playing in the surf...This year, they ran directly into the waves and giggled in glee.

Last year, while on vacation they learned to ride on two wheels and were scared to go very far... This year, we are going on bike rides for miles.

Last year, they always wanted me to get into the pool with them...This year, they get in all by themselves and could care less if I am there or not.

Last year, there were tears when buckets of sand did not turn into a perfect sandcastle...This year, the buckets of sands are still not perfect sandcastles, but there are no tears, and the sandcastles are spectacular!

It is fun to watch them grow.  Sometimes I miss the cute babies, toddlers, and preschoolers that they were...but mostly I am enjoying who they are now!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Thursday, June 14, 2012

My keep-the-kids-busy Travel Book

All the goodies, ready to go!
Tomorrow we will be traveling.

A thirteen hour drive. 

With six and seven year old boys.

Yep, from 6am-7pm,
all four of us...   In. The. Car!

So I planned and prepared for this "adventure!"

The car is packed full of goodies!
     Car games - that the boys only get to play with when we travel.
     DVDs and books - from the library - new to them!
     And the Keep-the-kids-busy Travel Book - my favorite creation!

The Keep-kids-busy Travel Book is simple but SO useful for, well, keeping them busy!  It is easy to create too...I went online and printed up free games (Mazes, Hidden Pictures, Math Problems, Word Seeks), storiesmaps (of all the states we will travel through), and state worksheets (that I purchased from and GBC bound them into a book.  One for each boy.

I created similar books the last time we traveled and I was pleased at how much the boys enjoyed them.  And, more importantly, how long it occupied them!

So I am crossing my fingers, and hoping, that Travel Books, plus the other goodies make for a quick 13 hours!

Wish us luck!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

"I'm Having a Bad Day!"

It drives me crazy when my boys say they are having a bad day!

A Bad Day...Really?  It's only 8:00am! 

A Bad Day...Really?  Just a minute ago you were laughing!

A Bad Day...Really?  Earlier today, you were playing and having a blast!

So, I have tried to teach my boys to say, "I am having a bad moment!"

Because, a moment doesn't have to last 24 hours.
And, because, in a moment, everything can change.
One moment can be bad, yet the next can be extraordinary!

So, today, when Owen, with tears in his eyes, looked at me and said "Mommy, it's a bad moment!"  I could help but smile as I wrapped my arms around him.