Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ordinary Courage Again

Brene Brown did it again…I love her blog.

She seems to be my other voice…my inside voice.

It is both frightening and reassuring that in these wild spaces of my mind and heart, I’m not actually alone in the wilderness.

While my experiences and feelings are entirely unique to me and it is in my singular reaction to feelings and events that I am truly defined as “artistic,” it is reassuring to know that I am not the only one who suffers from scars, tender spots and moments of extreme uncertainty. It is reassuring to know that I am not the only one who was damaged by some long ago agreement I made with a mean and spiteful childish remark made about me. I am not the only one who’s confidence was eroded by somebody who probably had zero confidence themselves and who chose to feel taller by standing on my bruised and tattered self-image.

In particular, the following quote rings true for me:

I blog because my head would blow off if I didn't. I need a place to find my voice and share ideas.


You see, I’ve been thinking about splitting out my blog…doing something for family and Jayden stuff, something for my art, something for my spiritual rants aka inspirational attempts and something for all those quirky references I like to make to other people’s blogs. I generally talk myself out of it because I often find myself with little time to update the ONE blog and will go for long periods of time where I search high and low for ideas to stimulate my two readers.

I have had in recent past, an ambition to marketize my blog. I’d read that the right way to go about getting started was to refine what I post. I struggle with this. I felt as though I’d have to edit myself in a way that is not appealing to me. I felt as though I’d be creating more work and less enjoyment for myself.

So..while I have a blog, I’m not a “blogger” in the sense that I have zero ambition to make the big bucks at it. I don’t even have an ambition to make a dollar at it.

Because I’m not interested in being one of the snarky in-crowd. I blog because my head would blow off if I didn’t.

Thanks for reading my ramblings. I appreciate you. I appreciate why we are alike and why we are different and hope that you will feel brave enough to give me your opinions and thoughts and feelings. I may not agree. But I will listen and we can have dialog. What a concept. Dialog.

Happy day and peace, ya’ll!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Brownie in a Cup

I was reading the Work In Progress Kits blog and saw this awesome recipe for a microwave brownie in a cup

A SINGLE, make in the moment, little bit of chocolately goodness.

Seriously…how cool is that!?!?!?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Scrapbook RESULTS

I may not be able to get results with exercise (ok...my dedication in that area is suspect and it MAY be the cause...but I degress) but I can get the pages done if I've got a plan and some good music.

So...ok...Berta and Deb and I did our monthly scrapping day on Saturday. I had a PLAN. And we had GOBS of chocolate and other goodies (like home made mini pizzas and sausage balls and popcorn shrimp). Wait...gobs of food and chocolate...hmmmm...perhaps another contributer to my exercise failure???? Moving on: And there was GREAT music - so great, in fact, that I could have gotten MORE done if I had scrapped more and danced less...

These are the fruits of my labor:






This one is Scott's favorite...and I think mine too:



I'm noticing style changes in my work. I've moved solidly from a two page layout to a one page layout - its my starting point instead of my "instead." Its less "square" and more free. I'm learning how to layer in a way that pleases me and is still relatively flat (I like visual dimension without a lot of actual dimension) AND I've started to think more about the story.

This is so much more like me.

Peace and blessings, ya'll!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

God's Perfect Moments

Three in one day...

******************One******************


We had a few Valentine's cards to open. I didn't have any. Jay noticed there were no cards for Mommy.

He said, "Where's your card, Mommy?"
I said, "Mommy doesn't have a card, baby."
He said, "It's ok, mommy. Its ok!"

******************Two******************


Scott and I passed a particular retail store on the way to an event last evening. I commented that I had never been in the store, though the concept is quite uniqe and its supposed to be fantastic. We discussed the concept of the store at length on the way to our event.

Fast forward to our event, a huge number of people in a ballroom, eating a diner at round tables. I strike up a conversation with the woman next to me. During the conversation, she mentioned several times that her and her husband were in retail. So, being the curious girl that I am, I ask in what capacity.

She tells me her husband is the PRESIDENT AND CEO of the company we discussed on the way to the event.

I don't believe in coincidence.

So, John Eldridge says, I'm asking the next question - Why did You bring me and this person together?

*****************Three*****************


As I'm tucking Jay into bed last night, he snuggled up next to me and let out a long sigh.

After much wiggling and getting comfortable, he says, "Happy Balentine Day, Mommy. I wuv you!"

God's timing is so perfect.

Peace, ya'll!!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentines Day!!!

In our house that means some sort of treat:



I don't normally use a boxed cake mix since I've disovered that Ina Garten has tremendous cake recipes...

BUT this time, to save some time, I did...

The chocolate fudge frosting, tho, is from scratch!!!

Tons and tons of sprinkles are required, of course!



We boxed a few up for Grandma and Grandpa P as well as sampling a few ourselves.

YUMMMMMM!!!

I've shared some cards with my boys...and they have shared cards with each other. Scott and I are having a date night tonight...

AND I might actually get some scrapbooking done if I'm crafty enough to wrangle the time right.

Have a FABULOUS DAY everyone!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Have you heard of Ordinary Courage?

Have you heard of Brene Brown?

I read her blog religiously…she inspires me and I swear she follows me around and writes about my life…which proves one of my theories – transparency in real life is critical to understanding that we are NOT alone and that we share a remarkable number of life-events.

I believe completely that the devil’s favorite playground is isolation. When he has us convinced that we are the only one on the planet going through something, then we make agreements that are damaging to our future relationships – with others, with God and with ourselves.

Well…Brene has said some things that I so identify with…

I’m wondering – do YOU have any Wayward Girls? Have you given them a home?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Valentines

What do you do for a one-year-old class of pre-schoolers for Valentines day?

I shy away from all things food and candy - there are allergies and restrictions to deal with...but most of all because we don't like to feed our kid a bunch of sugar. (a "treat" for him being VERY good is a SINGLE MnM...We've had the same standard size package since before Christmas.)

Well...here is my sweet without being sugary:

One package of these (unmade, of course):

Packaged as a craft with instructions and glue dots:

And a lovely boy-themed Valentine message:


And I'd show you what we made for the grandmas, but they read this and we want it to be a surprise!!!

Peace, ya'll!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Parent Teacher Conferences

We had the joy of going to parent teacher conferences last week...we thought it was funny that the one-to-two's class has parent teacher conferences. BUT we wanted to know if he was "the same" at school as he was at home and we needed to know what to work on at home that would improve his socialization in peer settings (don't I sound like I know what I'm talking about?)

To the credit of the teachers, they think he's sweet, charming and that all these things are funny.

These are some of the comments:

He thinks he's the third teacher. In the middle of a lesson on, oh, say..colors...he will decide its time to sing the ABC's...so he will launch into the ABC's and before you know it, the whole class is following along.

Negative: He doesn't recognize leadership and respect it.
Positive: He, himself, is a leader.


He doesn't eat his own lunch. He passes it out to all the other children - epecially the carrot chips. Once he has some of his lunch in eveyone's hand, he cheers and says "Good job!"

Negative: He's not eating what we send nor is he respective of other children's boundaries.
Positive: He has good sharing skills and he's an encourager.


He has to sit in time-out often in the class for his poor listening skills BUT he will BEG the teacher not to give him a yellow face on his calendar.

Negative: he doesn't listen and knows the power of visible rewards (translation, he figures if he gets an "A" how he gets there doesn't matter)
Positive: He has good negotiation skills, even with authority figures.


So...apparantly we are raising a very skilled politician. And I think he's going to be a Democrat! HA!!!

Peace, everyone!

Monday, February 09, 2009

Conversation at Home

Overheard between Daddy and Jayden:

Jayden: Say Hi to the box!

Daddy: Hi Box!

Say Hi to the crayone!

Hi, Cup!

NO! Say Hi to the CRAYON!

Oh, Hi Crayon!

NOW say Hi to the Cup!

Ok..Hi Cup! Hey, Jay, can you trace these lines to make a C?

NO! I don wan twace da wines make a C! Say Hi to the box!

Oh...well..Hi Box! (you're bossy like your mom!)

Keep in mind that I work full time outside of our home and that my son is with his dad full time at home (when he's not at school)...so...WHOdo you think he gets his bossyness from? HMMMMMMMM!!!

:-)

Happy day and peace, everyone!!!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Off to Music City USA

Off to Nashville this afternoon...



Don't know if I'll have time to post...the last time I was in Tennessee for work, I didn't even need my sunglasses - I left the hotel in the dark and returned from the plant in the dark.

This will be a big week for me work-wise...Busy and full of a huge number of people.

I'll try to take pictures with my blackberry and let you all see into my little world a bit...but I warn you...it may be a lot of coffee cups and panelled conference room walls.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Nakedness, Accidents and other weirdness

So, its been an interesting week in our household…

Mommy (that would be me) came down the stairs on Sunday afternoon to find the small one (that would be Jayden) hiding behind a chair in the play room.

So…perhaps not so weird to YOU, but to me, it was odd…

You see, he had already completely removed his pants and had his diaper worked down below his butt cheeks…which were pressed up against the window behind the chair that he was hiding behind…that would be the window facing the street…sigh…and so the naked phase began…

And Mommy – in her effort to high-tail it down the remaining flight of steps, remove those butt cheeks from the WINDOW facing the STREET and get those butt cheeks safely encased in a diaper AND some pants AND a belt AND some duct tape AND anything else I could apply that might keep said butt cheeks out of public view…

…SLIPPED on the top step, grabbed the banister, fell butt first down the steps, giving the right shoulder and arm a good wrench, bruising and scraping the right elbow, and bruising the left hip as well as knocking the wind right out of my sails.

Jay thought it was hysterically funny.

Daddy, who was supposed to be keeping an eye on the child but who had dozed off in front of a tennis match on TV, thought the world was coming to an end.

I thought, perhaps, I SHOULD have had kids in my twenties so as not to cause myself permanent bodily harm chasing them and their kid-weirdness around the house and at any rate aspirin would be a good thing to add to my to-do list for the afternoon.

Further weirdness ensued over the coming days…

You see, when your two year old masters the art of taking off his pants, he does it EVERY CHANCE HE GETS! Which, is cute – funny even – the FIRST time it happens…but then when you find yourself dressing him over and over (and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over…etc) it gets to be a pain…and weird.

Because two-year-olds have no sense of when it is the RIGHT time to disrobe and the WRONG time to disrobe – yes, we are using this as a lesson in when it is appropriate to bare one’s butt cheeks,(which, if mommy had her way would be only at bath time and after he was thoroughly married) and when it is not – but you see, two year olds do not CARE about when it is right and when it is wrong. They only care about the fact that they have mastered the motor skills to get naked and they are going to practice, practice, practice!

Unfortunately, they also have no sense of how shocking it is for a mommy to leave the room to put something away, and return some thirty odd seconds later to find a half naked boy child happily playing away as free as a bird, so to speak. Over the last week, I’ve found him naked watching TV, naked playing farm, naked looking out the window, naked reading books, naked rocking in his rocking chair, naked, naked, naked.

When I asked him why he kept taking his clothes off, he replied, “Caws I wan be naked!” When I asked why he wanted to be naked, he replied, “HUH?” Like somehow I’m odd for NOT wanting to be naked and he didn’t quite understand why I would be asking such a ludicrous question. And all this from a child who didn’t even want to take his socks off until very recently (we were lucky…we never went through the removing-the-socks-over-and-over-again phase)

As if I needed more evidence, this further contributes to my conclusion that little boys are weird. They are creatures of oddness (CUTE oddness, but oddness none-the-less) that I just do not understand.

I don’t understand why we have to “make a backett” with each of the Little People farm animals (or anything else that will fit in the basket ball hoop – except the basketball, of course), why Daisy Duck is the prettiest creature that ever walked the earth, why it is ok to “smooch” daddy but not “kiss” daddy, why all water contained in a bathtub must be put onto the bathroom floor prior to the bath being finished, why hot dogs are good for every meal…

And why nakedness is suddenly cool…

Peace, ya’ll!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Compassion

I'm SO excited! I am the guest designer over at Scrapbooking From the Inside Out for February!

The inspiration this month is Compassion...what an amazing emotion to dive into! It brought about all sorts of things for me. (which you will be seeing here on my blog as I mull the thoughts over and over in my mind)

The kit is very, very pink...a significant departure for me...though I DO have a pink crackberry and a pink i-pod, I scrap mostly in "boy" colors. I had oh-so-much FUN with these papers and glitter and wings and flowers.

Head on over, slip into the boards and join the dicussion and take a look at the inspriation page. The designs are FABULOUS!

This is my humble contribution...