Friday, February 7, 2014

Adventures in Carpooling

It has been a super cold winter for everyone!  The news is full of reports almost daily of a new Arctic Blast or Breeze or something else that may or may not sound like an ice cream treat from a fast food joint.  So I was driving home from the morning commute in my neck of the great state of Texas.  We don't get a lot of snow or ice here and everyone makes fun of us for closing schools and getting emergency supplies when we get 1 inch of frozen precipitation.  If our panic brings you joy, then go ahead and get a nice chuckle.  But that's not the reason for my post.  Nope, not really talking about the snow, or ice or judgement of all the transplants here.  Nope!  This post is about LOVE!   You see after driving home and getting within about 2-3 miles of my house, I had to stop for gas.  Ugh!  Right?!  I mean it's 20 degrees out there, and me without scarf or gloves, because let's face it, I don't normally need them.
I pull into the local gas station and at the pump in front of me is a man with slightly greying temples, and a flair for sweatpants to rival my own.  As I exit the car we greet each other with the standard, "It's so Cold!" and my desire for a magical gas tank that automatically refills when it's freezing or below outside.   So I swipe my card, and start to pump my gas.  I'm looking at the traffic and the school bus/honda wreck that is being investigated by both the police and school district.  A minute or two later I hear the man's gas nozzle click, signaling the full tank.  He closed the gas cap into place, replaces the nozzle, gets his receipt then knocks on the driver's side window.  (now I'm intrigued)  The window rolls down, and he says "Okay, Baby!  You're all set."  He leans into the SUV, and gives a smacking kiss. Then I hear the reply!  "Thanks, Daddy!  I love you!". Then the SUV drives away to whatever local school his daughter was going to.  He then walks across the snow covered concrete, gets into his sedan and drives away.

I was touched by this seemingly inconsequential scene. He'd driven to the gas station to pump the gas for his daughter so she wouldn't have to stand out in the cold.  He'd told her he loved her with his heart and actions, and she'd done the same with her words.  It was sweet really.  And I find that if we look. Really look, we'll find these types of poignant moments all around us.  We just have to want to see them then they'll be everywhere we look.  And then, if we honor those moments, we may find they are happening more and more often to us.  We may be able to see how often we are being shown love and kindness.

I left the gas station with a caffeine fix, chocolate, a full tank and a happier spirit due to the love of a father for his daughter. Makes you think about the love a certain Father has for all His Children.

Have a Blessed day, and look for LOVE all around you!


Saturday, January 25, 2014

My how the time flies!!

My daughter  got a letter from Abilene Christian College this week.  She is just a sophomore and these letters are seriously vague and there to see what interest is might be present.  It brought back memories.  When I was in high school I too got a letter from Abilene Christian College.  I thought it curious at the time.  Abilene Christian is known as a Church of Christ school, and I was not a member of the Churches of Christ.  I know, a church that is affiliated with a certain denomination also includes students from other religious affiliations.  So I did some research.  It became quickly obvious to me that ACC was not a fit for me.
I mean really!  They wanted everyone back in the dorms by curfew.  AND, Chapel was mandatory!  What?!  There were dorm Moms, not an upperclassmen RA who really just wanted to be left alone to study!  I found the environment too stifling and restrictive, so I made arrangements to go elsewhere.

Now that my daughter has received a letter from them, I'm rethinking the college definition of "Restrictive".  You know a reasonable curfew sounds safe!  Chapel?  What could it hurt?!  Dorm Moms!  That's what I'm talking about!  Interesting how different things seem when it's your baby planning to go off to college.

Besides, Abilene doesn't have a lot to do to get into trouble... C'mon!  However, they don't have a stellar program for deaf education which is what she really wants to pursue.


Friday, November 1, 2013

Who is enough?

I was greeting trick or treaters last night and Glee came on.  It was the Cory Montieth farewell and I Facebooked about it.  A friend of mine from my hometown commented that he couldn't watch it.  He is feeling too raw right now.  You see a friend of his who we went to school with took his own life last week and my friend has been asked to Officiate the Memorial service.  And then my daughter comes down from doing homework to hand out some candy because she'd had a hard day at high school.  You see she was as school yesterday and at lunch while sitting down in the communal area where the sophomores hang one of the boys from her little band of brothers went around to each small grouping of people to see if they wanted to play cards.  He was talking very quietly so she couldn't hear what he was saying.  As he works his way around, he passes by her without inviting her to play.  She asks him what he'd been saying and he point blank says.  "Oh, nothing to you!  I was asking them if they wanted to play cards, but you aren't invited!". 

As she is relating this story to me, she starts crying because even she knows, it's not about the card game.  It's about the rejection.  "Why!" she says.  "Why does this keep happening to me? What's wrong with me that no one seems to want to really be my friend?!" she says.  So there I am, the mother of this beautiful, smart, warm, funny sensitive soul who is crying out! Her soul is crying out wondering "why am I not enough?" And I wonder again what crusty soul disease are we spreading where people walking around in this life feel no remorse for so simply and easily hurting someone else?  Are we so closed off to the human experience of others that we don't have the ability to empathize anymore? 

I think to the man who in his forties suffered so that he felt no possible way to go another day.  What a tragic, senseless loss.  Those whom he left behind are thinking how they'll miss him and what he meant to them. And I think, what made him feel like he wasn't enough?  He, himself, isn't enough to the people he loves. 

Recently a friend of my family passed away due to cancer.  He left a wife, and 6 children from their combined families.  He was much loved and will be greatly missed.  As I spent time at the hospital his wife was encouraged by our clergy to have a "talk" with her husband.  What kind of talk she wondered.  I, being somewhat fresh from my having lost my father in 2012, told her to have the following talk with her husband.  Tell him, how you feel about him.  Tell him what he means to you.  Tell him every contribution he has made to your happiness and your personal emotional and spiritual journey.  Tell him, how you see the best of him in his children.  Tell him, all they ways God has used him throughout his life.  Relive, the funny, silly, sometimes rocky memories and laugh and smile and reassure him that his life has meant the world to you.  Tell him you love him and that no matter what mistakes he's made, that he has been and is Enough.  That with all his flaws, and baggage and scars and faults, that he is enough.  That his life and his abilities have changed the life and destiny of people he may never know due to those he has known.  That he is loved!  That he is enough to you and to God!  That he is enough to his children and his siblings!  That no matter what, He Is Enough! 

Then I thought to myself, "why?!" Why do we wait until someone's time on this earth is complete do we tell them, or tell the church full of mourners that this person was enough. I think to myself, that if we were actually telling one another everyday, in big ways and in small that they are more than enough, that they might not feel the need to hurt themselves.  That they might be better equipped to experience rejection without feeling unworthy of love and friendship.  That maybe is this boy as school had really felt like he was loved, nurtured, treasured enough that he wouldn't feel the need to make others feel less so he could feel more. 

So today, as you navigate this journey that your soul is taking on this earth.  Remember that you are Enough!  And that those in your life, whom you love are enough.  And let us help one another to really understand the depth to which we are loved and love each other.  So when you go, to work, home, church, the shops, anywhere Love the people God has put in your path.  Look them in the eye, in the soul and tell them they are enough.  Tell them what they mean to you.  Tell them how their very existence on this earth has enriched your life.  How your life would never be the same without them.  Tell them you love them, then do the big and small things to show them. 

Be Good to one another! 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

My Summer

I spent quite a bit of time this summer helping my mother settle into her new digs.  My Father passed away February 2012 and my mother sold the old home place in May 2013.  She waited a year, so that she didn't make any decisions based on grief or emotion.  She couldn't move in for 6 weeks so she stayed with my brother and his family.  We moved her into her house in town and then my girls and I spent weeks there over the summer helping her paint, arrange furniture and hang pictures.

We spent a lot of time reading, and hanging out.  There was church camp and time with friends.  We also discovered Dr. Who last spring but didn't have time to catch up.  So... Yea we became rabid Dr. Who fans.  Thank you Netflix!  The general consensus is that the 10th Doctor is our favorite.  11 is ok, but 10 is the ONE!  Rose Tyler is the Stuff, but Donna Noble's end story had me lying in a puddle on the floor.  Why?!  WHYYY?!  We also had our summer Harry Potter Marathon, because that never gets old! 

We started meditating.  In preparation for the school year and all the stress that comes with it.  We've started reading about reiki and the God Power.  Very interesting stuff. We do find the meditation to be very helpful in our connection with God. 

I am still out of work, and looking.  I was really hoping to avoid retail so I could find something that could be a career and not just a job.  It's been a long hard road, but I still feel faithful that God will provide!  It might be retail or any old thing, but that's going to be ok.  I don't have any problems working retail, it's an honorable profession but I want something more! 

Ugh! My weight.  Not only have I not lost weight, but I think I have gained weight.  Gah!  I have got to get it together!  So truth be told I have about 150 lbs to lose.  Pretty embarrassing.  I can write that here because no one really reads this blog much anyway.  Maybe I should use this to log my nutrition etc. 


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Last Day of School

Today is my youngest's last day of 6th grade.  She has had some struggles this year.  Learning to get herself organized and keep track of her homework.  Remembering to turn in her assignments on time.  Organization has never been her strongest trait.  She had some low grades in the first couple of grading periods due to this.  However, she has really progressed a lot this semester. 

This is her first year to have "Exams" and we hope she knocks it out of the park.  Not so her grades are high but so she can finish STRONG!  I firmly believe in making sure she has a victory.  It's not how the first inning goes, but how the game ends.

I'm really not a Grades Nazi, but I know that kids really pay attention to that in each other. Also, it can be an indicator of a problem or Progress.  I want my kids to do their very best and nurture their full potential.  If their very best effort earns them a 75, then we acknowledge that victory.  If their grade is a 90 and they gave a half hearted effort, we don't celebrate that.  We wonder how good their grade could have been had they done their best work. 

I'm really proud of her growth this year.  Her journey.  It was a really difficult school year last year, and this was her first year in Junior High. She has grown in her responsibility around the house too.  Helping with dishes without complaining.  Straightening up without whining.  She does more than her share and doesn't hold a grudge.  I'm really proud of her and the many ways she has proven herself as a responsible young woman. 

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Adventures in TaG-land

It has been a whirlwind of a year.  My daughter has worked so hard and today is her last day for the year.  Her last two finals are today and we are planning to splurge and have a lunch date.  She deserves it.  I didn't have the kind of work load she has had until I was in college.

  Amazing what our kids can do when they are motivated and supported.  They have risen to the expectations set for them and the staff at TaG expect a lot.  They strive for excellence and fully expect the student body to be excellent.  Even when a kid has a weakness in a certain subject area, we as parents and teachers fully believe that the student will master it.  Oh, you need a little extra help?  No Biggie!  We'll help you because we know you have it in you.  Unfortunately for us, our beloved Principal is retiring this year.  We will miss him greatly, but hope he thoroughly enjoys his retirement.  He deserves it.

Because of this TaG was deemed the #1 Best Public High School in the Nation. 


Monday, May 20, 2013

Bountiful Baskets

I have been on a journey to eating healthier and find that foods that are really good for you can be very expensive.  So, my new niece (married my nephew) told me about a coop she participates with. It's called Bountiful Baskets.   So, on Mondays I sign up and on Saturday I pick up a couple of small laundry baskets full of fruits and vegetables.  I added on a small extra veggie pack that included a large handful of fresh herbs.  Below is the haul I brought in this week.