The First Ten

After that downer Label post, I thought I would have a little fun...


1) We were created for work, so I would more than likely create a schedule of productive activities; like visiting people in the nursing home who don't get visitors, attending community events planned to 'raise awareness' and volunteering at the animal shelter and the botanical garden.

2) I would dress my dogs up in clothes and enter their photos in contests.

3)  I would travel. Near and far, to historically significant places and cool vacation destinations. I would not let my husband plan these trips, as he inherited the "kill-your-family-with-extra-time-in-the-car-for-side-trips-only-you-are-interested-in" gene from his dad.  He remembers, but makes no connection.

4) I would renovate my house.  I assume if I don't need to work, what we are really saying is money has suddenly become no object.  I would hired skilled professionals to quickly and expertly complete the task.  I would add a room on the back upstairs, replace the fence, get the exterior painted, move the laundry downstairs, move the half bath and turn the existing half bath into a hallway/butler's pantry, close up the living room where the stairwell is, and have the obnoxious wallpaper in the dining room done away with.  It goes without saying that I would have the upstairs bath completely re-done and the downstairs woodwork restored.  Then with my newly large and functional home....

5) I would have people over all the time. And feed them.

6) On second thought, I might sell this house and move to the country, get some chickens and goats, and plant a garden.

7) I would start a book club and a writer's group.

8) I would start working on my competition chili.

9) I would get my haircut regularly and take better care of my appearance because who has time for that now.

10)  I would create very exceptionally good holiday celebrations for my family and friends.  I might put my house on the neighborhood Christmas Home Tour.

I love this post, because it doesn't have to wait until I don't have to work.  I just have to have a slower schedule.  Thanks, Mama Kat for prompt #4.

I am linking with Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop.

Ooh, Don't Get Me Started...

~I am thinking of changing the blog title to "Another Prohibitively Long Post"...any thoughts?~

I have gone here before in a variety of ways here at The Accident (Wait, is that the name of a Jersey Shore character?).  I don't know if Mama Kat is just trying to draw me out or what, but it's her prompt so maybe she'll clean up the mess.

We all love a label.  Jock, Brain, Soc (pronounced 'soash'), Dweeb, Band Geek, Bible Thumper, Stoner, Sped...  From earliest age, children are encouraged to locate their 'thing', stay with their crowd, and recognize who doesn't belong and keep them out and not hang out with someone from the wrong compartment.

Then we grow up and we are white collar, blue collar, professional, skilled or unskilled, working poor, unemployed, or homeless.

Historically, it was common, though it is no longer acceptable public behavior, to label people according to race, color,national origin, or creed-- wop, chink, negro, kraut, mick ,Catholic, Jew, and Protestant.  We have cleaned up our terms, but not our hearts.

It has come in style to have a mental health label.  Alcoholism, ADHD, Depression, Bi-Polar, ADD, ODD, RAD, and the increasingly popular OCD.  The absolutely best ever: caffeineism.
"What an ugly thing to say, Margaret!"

Have we met?

Let me just explain.  I am a bastard, adult child of an alcoholic, college graduate, Native American, lazy, disorganized, lonely, Weight Watchers Lifetime member, SAHM, evangelical, Republican, homeschooler, blogger, doula.  I have PMS, Migraines, Arthritis, Anemia, Insomnia and a near genius I.Q.

I live everyday in fear that I am succumbing to the conditions that qualified counselors have identified in my family background-- for which the prognosis is poor because lying is fundamental to the differential diagnosis for both.either, so she tells her therapist whatever and they say she needs to get her caffeine under control and that if I work on my co-dependency, hers will go away.

Everyday, I fight for my kids to see themselves as whole persons and not sum total of the labels they can assemble like merit badges-- adopted, bi-racial, twin, teenaged, sprinter,...whatever.  "Mommy, my friend said I have ADD."

Here is what a label gets me...

1) An excuse to be served rather than to serve.
2) An excuse to exclude rather than include.
3) An excuse to think we know someone rather than investing the time to know them.
4) An excuse to not try.  (Seen the Olympics?)
5) An excuse to dislike someone and to assume they dislike us.
6) An excuse to hurt someone because they don't matter. 
7) An excuse for bad behavior. 
8) An excuse to set someone out of our way, make them a statistic, collect extra funding for their presence in our program.  Let's (label) everyone and those who actually need services will ultimately benefit.
9) An excuse to love one person more than others with the same (label).  For example; It is okay for Angelina to be a (label) because she is (label); it is not okay for me to be a (label) because I am (label).
9) An excuse to hate without shame.
10)An excuse to further isolate ourselves from each other in a culture gone mad.

But hey...it saves so much time.

"Excuse me, Bitch, but it helps me just to know what I am up against everyday of my life!"

I just did.

Our labels buy us out of the American Dream...which is not "everybody gets to have everything they want and a cute bag to carry it in."  Labels tell children they don't have to work...it should be handed to them.  It tells adults to explain why you aren't working as hard but should still get to live like the guy who busted his ass and saved his pennies.  Their overuse teaches a culture to "work the system" and steals resources from those who truly need assistance and extra understanding.  Labels help me step out from under my responsibility for my own situation.

We can't live without them.  It would really take a lot of time to get to know a special needs child without some sort of track to run on.  But it shouldn't come with a padlock.  I like a label like "registered sex offender" which should come with a padlock.  I know the EMTs love a medical alert bracelet and all the terms that let them know what may be going on with this person.  Labels save lives.  But.  They have taken them, too.

In my family, we say, "That's just [her]."  It is not another excuse as in, "That's just the way I am; I CAN'T change."  It is how we say, "Understand her as an individual.  She will turn out okay.  This is irritating in her behavior, but when you put it together with all the good she does, you hardly notice it at all."

It is love.  When we love someone, their diagnosis doesn't keep us from expecting great things from them.  When we love someone their creed, color, or national origin is no barrier to intimacy.

For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.

I am linking with Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop.


Kids in Restaurants: A Guide for Naked Emperors

Sometime last week, I heard a news story about a restaurant owner who decided not to welcome children in his restaurant anymore.

We have eaten out a lot with our girls, and we are a disruption, to be sure.  Because we are so afraid of our children being a problem, we are hyper-vigilant to detect any thing that may be slightly less than the insight and conduct of a (whatever age I am) adult.  Stupid?  Yes.  No medication is available.  Whatever, Mine and Mickey's conduct is certain to have been the disruption.  Not the kids.

With eyebrow provocatively raised, the news guy (Saturday morning I don't remember what network.) interviewed the restaurant owner, a career waiter, a mom and some people with no children.  They all had opinions. Despite the interviewer's facial expression, it was all predictable.

Good Looking Well Dressed Mommy: "Why should I be penalized for teaching my child to like steak instead of "processed chicken food"?" (did not address whether her child acted like a chimp in restaurants)

Childless couple: "Why should we be disturbed?" (Choose not to be)
Waiter: "It isn't my job to act as go-between for Childless Couples and Good Looking Well-Dressed Mommies." (Unless your boss says it is.)

Owner: "It is my place, I'll do what I want." (Whether it is good business or not)

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, I don't know why it is national news. I sincerely hope the man still has the right to run his restaurant the way he chooses within the law.  The network chose a really good looking mommy and very extremely average looking childless couple and a 'disheveled,-but-that-is-so-right-now' young waiter.  The network made their position on this inane topic clear.  America ought to be up-in-arms over this infringement on the rights of someone (especially an attractive person) to do something. Anywhere.  Ever.

Of course, you know me.  I am always wandering out in left field, picking up unmade points and mixing unwanted metaphors.  Sorry, I got a little distracted by the obvious point this time.

How come it's not okay to be a small a-hole, but when you become a big one, you are welcome to come and soak your character deficiencies in alcohol.  Up. In. Here?

Are kids the only ones who disturb other diners in restaurants?

I. Think. Not.

What did you think about this story?  What is the juiciest story you have heard wafting over from the next table?

OMG!!! I am Sharing My Awesome with Jennifer @ Momma Made It Look Easy.

Momma Made It Look Easy


A Little Cooperation, Please?

We haven't done a lot out of the house in our homeschooling up to now. We did Daisy Girl Scouts when they were first graders.  Quite a good deal of ballet.  Some gymnastics.  Church activities.  Baseball.  One year, we were working on the same curriculum as another family and we got together once a week to share the hands-on activities.

There are those families who have activities almost everyday..  Seems to me, that if you are home schooling, that implies being at home and schooling your kids. Quite frankly, I don't know how families do it. In our state, you have to record 180 , 4 hour, school days AT HOME.

This year, we have joined two co-ops.  Since this isn't a homeschool blog (I couldn't dare), Educational Co-operatives are organizations that offer classes in subjects that are difficult to teach individually or that the parent will lose her will to live if she has to feels unwilling or unable to teach.

One is on Mondays, the Divas take Theatre and Speech, and there are classes for Small Fry.  The organization is in its second year, and has tripled enrollment since last year.  We have met a whole lot of new people. There are enough familiar faces to keep it from being too intimidating. Tuitions are low, and the volunteer burden is high and rising weekly.

The second, meets Fridays, and is strictly high school.  It is a serious, structure oriented group.  The organization is more than 10 years old. There are a lot of familiar faces and it is still intimidating.  The Divas take Geography and Composition.  I babysit during co-op hours in exchange for tuition for those classes.  Tuition is high and the volunteer burden is highly structured, once per semester.

The Divas are learning, maturing, and having an utter blast.  Yes, they get too big for their britches from time to time, but that is per developmental schedule.  Small Fry gets to goof off with the other little dudes in his classes and wrap teachers around his little finger.  He needs the time and so do I.

I am.  Wiped.  Out.

I visited with a friend who is also doing co-ops for the first time, and her son is in a class with the Divas at both co-ops.  We agreed, that there are two fundamental hurdles right now:

1. Adapting to having only three days a week.  By the time we get home on Monday, the day is shot.  That leaves Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday to teach the other subjects and prepare for Friday.  By the time we finish on Friday, I need a stiff drink to be away from people for a little while to take a nap.  My friend works all day on Friday.

2. There is a difference of opinion between us and our children regarding participation in subjects that are non- co-op classes. Algebra and Science will get done.  Health, give me a break.  Just finish it.  Literature?  Diva.  Please.

This is a major adjustment of time, energy, money and how we do life(I've let myself go, and can't invite people over cause the house is an embarrassment.)  It is a good adjustment and exactly time for it to take place.

 About two weeks into the second co-op, it dawned on me that this is really the only way to fly.  Someone else does the scheduling and the grading, I get to do the teaching.  That is all I wanted to do anyway.  I'll get some Red Bull. We'll adjust to the new weekly schedule.  I'll stop sleeping. We'll have time to accomplish the other things we need to do.  It is worth it to all of us.

Stay tuned for the "Socialization" post... Bwa ha ha ha ha.


Weekend Wrap Up

I keep thinking, "Gee, It's been awhile since I posted," and, "I should post. Maybe if I said, 'I should write,' I would be more motivated?"

But, America, I can assure you; I have nothing to say.

We had pizza Friday night. New pizza place. Good.  Watched Invincible. Good.

I had a Thirty-One Party.  Closed that out.  Getting a bunch of stuff.  Cool.

There is a lot of sniffling and throat clearing and headaches going on here.  Not cool.

My Oklahoma State Cowboys won their game.  Cool. Go Pokes

Reading a book.  It's number two in a series.  Cool.  I guess.

I'm pretty addicted to Pinterest.

The girls left another assignment to the last minute.  So they are working on that now.

Amazing Race is finally back on Sunday night.

I had a run-in with a guy in the deli at the grocery store.  I don't have the energy to make it entertaining.

Got in a couple of pretty decent naps.

I really need to start taking my vitamins.  I wish I had a "buddy" who would call me and tell me to take them.  I need to find my Weight Watchers booklet.

I don't adore Sunday nights.  They make me feel like this.

Tomorrow is the beginning of a new week.  yay.


Where I Am From: a Recipe for Thanksgiving

I am from pick up trucks, from mason jars and the fragrance of windswept prairie.

I am from the homestead...hard-working, early-rising, working for yourself.

I am from the wheat, the yarro.

I am from dinner at Grandma's and brown eyes, from Cousins, Aunts and Uncles.

I am from common sense and brown hair and big feet.

From "It's too pretty to be inside," and "You're in my light", and "'Gosh durn' kids left on every light in the house."

I am from The Old Rugged Cross and Saturday night mass.

I’m from Far and Away,  and Silkwood ;deviled eggs and chicken & noodles and Marlene's rolls.

From riding shotgun with Grandma, playing with fire in the flower shop, and 89ers Day.

I am from the Grandma's living room, Leona's house, and periwinkles and coleus and calladium.

I am from understanding I'm loved no matter what, covering a multitude of mistakes, realizing how rich I am, finding my anchor hold in gratitude.


Aunt Marlene's Recipe for Home Made Noodles

4 eggs, beaten                                       1 stick margarine, melted
2 t. milk (yes, teaspoons)                       2 t. salt
3 to 4 c. flour

Mix eggs, margarine and milk.  Add flour and sale to make a thick dough.  Roll thin, using plenty of flour.  Roll up like a jelly roll.  With a sharp knife, cut diagonally into narrow strips.  Can be cooked immediately in chicken broth or frozen to use later.

I am participating in Mama Kat's writer's workshop prompts 2 and 3 because they work together so well.

I am also sharing my awesome with Jennifer @ Momma Made It Look Easy.


Parenting Advice: From Where I Sit Now.

My daughters are adopted.  They came to us at seven months of age.  They had been diagnosed as  having failure to thrive based on failure to double birth weight by age 6 months.  They both had thrush, ear infections in both ears, had been tested for cystic fibrosis and cleared, reflux, a respiratory infection coming on and impacted bowels.  The had 'flat affect'(didn't express emotion in facial expressions) and were bald on the backs of their heads, had not rolled over and couldn't sit up unassisted--as a result of having been left in car seats most of the time.

The pediatrician said to me, "If I adjust for prematurity, and I am not going to."  And proceeded to tell me what to do to bring their height and weight on the chart.  I did it.  I felt like a hero in an action movie...like a mommy Indiana Jones or better, Luke Skywalker -- checking in with Obi-Wan and going another round.

I watched them grow.  Put them on their tummies and they shot across the floor like wet soap.  I used cloth diapers(the old-fashioned kind, not your modern handrails and ramps version).  I was the only one who got stuck with a pin.  I stopped buying little bottles of baby food and fed them veggies I mashed with a fork, and rice I cooked and mashed myself with a little formula for richness.  There was no citrus, peanuts, dairy, corn, wheat or shellfish before age 12 months. I had them on a feeding schedule and a sleeping schedule.  At Obi-Wan's direction, they held a crayon correctly (actually, they grabbed it right the first time and ate it) and drank from a sippy cup before 12 months(Obi-Wan wanted the lid off and I decided not to have the mess).

One was 1/2" taller and 1lb. heavier at every doctor's visit.  Until the 14 months visit.  The smaller sister was an inch taller and a pound heavier.  She had gained the difference, plus what her sister gained, plus that much more.  Only time ever.

Mirror image twins, they preferred different hands, but Type A girl, finding a right-handed world, spent several months deciding the right hand would have to do.  She walked first, but rejected it for the infinitely faster, crawling.  Her smaller sister waited a week or two and stood up and walked away.

When they were about 3, something began to happen.  People began to say, "They're quite tall, aren't they."  Yeah.  They went to a bad gym for a few months.  In a 45 minute class, they sat for 35 minutes and then rec'd a backward disciplinary action (didn't get a stamp) for not paying attention.  They were 4.  What did they do while they were seated?  Watch the competitive team.  What did they do when they got home?  Whatever they saw the big girls do.  Fortunately, we were no longer able to continue with that program.  Or they might have broken their necks.

They are now taller than I am.  Both are of a healthy weight.  Their standardized test scores yielded a number of scores ranking among the highest of national comparisons.  They don't need braces, even though they sucked their fingers until they were 5 and 9 respectively.

They are stunning.  They don't really know or see what I see go on around them.  I am protecting them from some of it. (One day I might calm down enough to blog about perverts in Taco Bell, but probably that's a tale you won't hear.) I have been asked why they don't try modeling.  Because it is imperative to raise girls who don't derive their sense of worth from their appearance.  Modeling at age 14 would be counter intuitive to that purpose and mission.

They are fast. They qualified for AAU Track and Field Junior Nationals.  Had we been able to go, they would have participated in high jump and the 4x100 relay.  Tuesday, Type A came in second to a high school aged guy who is studying to be fast.  I told her to catch him next time, so I could laugh.

They were struggling in the summer. There was a girl in their division who was in everyone's heads.  I told them to imagine there were two chicken legs on a plate in the kitchen.  The three of them are watching tv and I say, "there are two chicken legs."  Okay, kids, Whose chicken legs are they?

Both said, "Mine."

I said, "It belongs to who gets there first."

They beat her*.

Am I bragging?  I don't know.  I just showed up.  They did the rest.  Mostly, I am keenly aware that I am only good for analogies.

New mom, yes, you.  Especially the one that the doctor said, "label, could be label, 40% will label, label, label....but perhaps if you are lucky, only label."

God chose you to parent this person.  Some days will suck.  You are going to yell.  You are going to cry.  Maybe for days.  You are going to have to forgive them for doing stupid shit.  They are going to get hurt and you are going to hate God for a little while because He let it happen.

Then you are going to stand your ass up.  Dust yourself off and quit pouting.  You are not going to parent by statistic or by popular vote.  You are going to parent your child.  Your way.  You are going to give your life away.   You are the mom.


I chose to write on Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop, prompt 5, Advice to new mothers.

I am sharing my awesome with Jennifer at:

Momma Made It Look Easy


Once Upon Everyday

I shudder to think of the times I am wasting.  Shut up in the house, irritating my kids.  "Smearing around; making messes" (this is one of the phrases my children will use to imitate me at some point).  Underachieving. Be honest. You can tell.

I follow Anna See's, An Inch of Gray.  Last week she lost her son.  I hadn't been there much, because she is a phenomenal writer and ethereal.  I fee like a poser.... okay, yeah.  I already covered that.  He was 12.  She posted what she had read for his funeral.  It was gorgeous.  Lavish.

I realized if my child were swept away tomorrow, I couldn't write such a post.

My husband had just finished telling me about a guy he knew when he was in high school, who has accomplished such a lot in his life.  His website says his resume reads like a fairy tale.

No one ever expected anything of me, and I have not disappointed.  I am dissatisfied.  I feel I have missed the mark.  "It is amazing what you have been able to acheive, coming from such dysfunction."

No.  People have come from worse circumstances than I did and done much greater things.  I have missed the mark.  Scripture says:: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  Nothing is impossible with God.  All things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose.

I have to figure out how to do what I am supposed to be aimed at.  I am moved to know my kids better.  We made a good start today.  I am going to start the household projects I have been putting off.  We have to live here, this isn't a rest stop on the highway of life(though it was smelling like one when the weather was hot).  I want it to be a place of refreshing for a traveler on the way. Not a truck stop.  More like the Inn at Blackberry Farm.  Well, since I am starting from zero, somewhere in between.  Actually, that was my dream as a kid.  For my house to be a destination.  Where people would just show up and hang out.  Drink tea.  Crash if necessary.

In a few weeks, I will have lived in this house longer than I have lived in any place.  Five years and five months.  Sometime in late October.  Maybe that's why I had that vision of home while I was so little.

I don't really know what I am trying to say.  I use the blog to think through things.  We only go around once.  We don't know how long it's gonna last.  We need to live like there is no tomorrow.  I want to do things differently.  Be more present.  Have no regrets.

~just got up and groused with a child over something stupid~

Am I even qualified?  Will I just disappoint again?  Which things are important?  Where do I focus my energy?  How much do I let them lead(cell phones all around!!!) and how much do I just lay it out there for them to appreciate someday when they are grown..?

"Her everyday life read like a fairy tale."


Cousins Are Where It's At

Since the weekend, I have known that dear blog friend, Jennifer's, cousin Dalton was seriously injured in a four-wheeler accident.  She has asked for prayer for all the family and the doctors and the details.  We are praying.  And God is answering.

I have cousins.

They are the siblings I don't have.  Even my cousins who have brothers and sisters say we are more like sibs than cousins(or maybe cousins are just supposed to be like this and it is one of the things our family did right).

If this had happened (and if they called me), I would be as concerned as Jennifer is about Dalton.  If any of these people's kids, I would want to be called on to pray.  I would want God to hear us cry out.

I would consider it a profound privilege to intercede for the healing of my cousins' babies.

Jennifer is an online friend.  And an IRL friend.  No need to ask that silly question here.

Please jump over to her post @Momma Made It Look Easy to get the details, and join us.


Say It To My Face

Dear Face,

I owe you an apology.   I know better.  You look a wreck and it is all my fault.  I could blame the stress, old age or diet.  In reality, we both know it is the crappy makeup and skin care to which I have been subjecting you.  Truth be known, we both feel the difference.

Back in the day, the "gift with purchase" was to me, like Everclear to a sorority pledge.  I had no idea what was going on until my defenses were down and I had no favorite.  I loved everybody-- Lanc*me, L@uder and Clini&ue (sounds like a law firm); everybody was welcome.  I couldn't wait until the next "Beauty Event" and hung around the mailbox to catch the invitation when it came.  Yet there is not a 12 step program for those who NEED the feel of the good stuff.

No one cares.  It is only you and me, and I am sorry for how badly I have treated you.  I promise to only treat you with the tender loving care to which you are entitled.  I promise never to put that horrid base, that feels like cream of mushroom soup, on you again.  I promise only to call you clean when I have used at least three steps.  Not because Three is magic, but because I want to be deliberate.

Yes, I have read the awesome book.  I know what the author says.  I feel I can make us all happy.  But it may take some time. I am sorry you have been the one to pay the price.  It should have been me.  Please give me a second chance, Face.


What is the best thing you ever did for your face?  What is the worst?


Parenting Teens: a Guide for the Teen

Sooner or later, we deal with the teen years.  As a teen, as the parent of a teen, or as someone who is still waiting for a drink at the freaking Sonic.  In the scheme, we are just inside the door of these precious moments with twin fourteen year-old girls.


We are already the veterans of the learning curve. We've upgraded our b.s. detectors.  As such, we have some pointers for those who think they know it all already, the teens.


1. Quit.  You are not parenting me. I had a mom.  She got to clock out when I took over for myself.  Over 25 years ago.  Stop weighing in on adult decisions about which you have not been consulted.  Just stop it.

2.  Trust.  You don't need to know why.

3. Stop talking.  You literally have nothing to say.  The things that come out of your mouth make me worry that you are, in fact, schizophrenic.  No.  Really.  No apparent connection with reality.  Your sister has noticed.

4. Wear clothes.  You are doing pretty well.  Just to be clear, current fashion is exactly 'late 80s prostitute'.  Forget about it.  I don't care if EVERY other girl is wearing it.  That is EVERY other parents' problem.  You don't have to have self-respect; you just have to go around looking like you do.

5. Not really.  Respecting yourself is simple.  You deserve the best.  Keep your bathroom nice.  Stop digging stuff out of the hamper and spraying it with odor eliminator.  Change your freaking sheets.  If a friend is doing something stupid, invite her to do something else; if she refuses, walk away.  Be yourself.  You are cool.  If someone doesn't like that.  That is fine.  You will find someone you really connect with.

6. School. Just to have this out on the table, do NOT leave another thing until the last minute.  The, "I need a map now, and I won't help with dinner, that's your job and I am going to style my hair for practice and I told you I needed it," shtick is a one and done.  There won't be a next time.

7.  Parenting.  I am still parenting your siblings.  Why don't you step back?  I mean it.  I am right here.  Why don't you hold yourself to the same high standard you hold them?  All you manage to do is let me know you know exactly where the standard is when you aren't meeting it.

8.  Roll your eyes. Just one more time. So help me.

9.  You are just tall.  Being tall doesn't give you wisdom, anymore than being a good cook makes me run faster. You have parents because you are large and have a lot of information, but no common sense.  We are here to protect you until you have figuratively slammed your hand in enough doors to figure out not to place your hand on figurative stoves or stick figurative bobby pins in proverbial electrical outlets.  This is why I say, "Uuuuse Your Miiiiind-uh," so much.

10a.  I love you.  Stop slamming through life.  Two people may or may not have sustained injuries this week, due to your charging around. Get your elbows off the table.  Chew with your mouth closed.  Take smaller bites. Don't scream when you laugh or sneeze. SIT LIKE A LADY.  NO ONE WANTS TO SEE THAT. 

10b. I see that you want a boy or five to think you are cute. I appreciate your description of what is and is not dating(blog fodder to be sure) and your illumination of the difference between my archaic use of the term "like" and the modern use.  BUT. You are NOT going to be dating( or "not dating" either) for awhile, so you have plenty of time to work on becoming who you are so you don't need validation by a boy.  Pretty is as pretty does (see 10a).  Even the most gorgeous woman who is mean or stupid or acts like Mr. Ed at the table will be passed over for a less striking lady who is nice to herself and EVERYONE else.  Boys like pleasant humans.  (Ironically, I am encouraging you to have better manners to impress boys you can't date.  I am not ashamed.  I am tired of looking at your food and if I can use a boy to get what I want, that's fine.  It's a victimless crime.  Don't do what Mommy just did, Girls.)

Your dad is an architect. What he builds represents him.  I am a mom of girls.  What I build represents me.  I know what is in you.  You are beautiful, never sick, always enthusiastic and have never attempted anything without success. And you have great hair.  The world is freaking yours for the taking.  I am here to give you direction, and apply the brakes when necessary.  If you get yourself under control, I won't need to apply the brakes so often.

I am sharing my awesome with Jennifer...

Momma Made It Look Easy


Blessed are the Gentle; And the Rest of Us, Too.

I haven't like the sound of my last few posts. I can't stand the sound of my own voice. This was a huge problem for me on the other blog, as well.  I sound so cranky.  I want to be gentler.

A friend gave me Ann Voskamp's book.  I was stirred; I was shaken. I was irritated.

She is smooth and consistent.  She feels deeply and experiences the support of her husband and his brothers and thousands of fellow bloggers and thankers.  She thanks God. She doesn't complain. She is grateful. She is called to call others. She is a good girl, and look how God has blessed her.  I realize the point is gratitude, and knowing God better through obedience to Him.  I got that.  I got that right quick and then sat and marveled at the seamlessness of her voice.  If I could strum the strings like that, I would be really, really thankful.

I know.  Hilarious. (Just like the fact that she is another blogger whose book I read and said, "Totally worth the fuss.")

I know if she were to read this post she would slap her lyrical forehead with the heel of her poetic hand and think, "Ribbons of moonlight swirled through the window as I read another stupid idiot's point-missing post."...or some such.

Woe to me, if I skim along the surface and try to be more poetic when I thank God for closer parking spaces and Fanta Grape. I want to dig down deep.  My deep.

I want to be gentler.  Calmer.  More confident. But I want a gentler me.  Not my imitation of someone else's gentleness, or their voice.

As I read, I became more and more acutely aware of the danger of making the list(you can link your list to her blog, weekly) to impress the author, or the other women, rather than to find your own thousand.  Just between you and God.  To try to make a poetic list, rather than a spiritual quest to restore thankfulness to its pivotal role in relating to God personally.  Which I need to do desperately.  Desperately.  But.

My voice is sardonic(yes, there is exactly a word for it) . It just doesn't sound like the babbling of a brook on the Canadian prairie.  It sounds like an air wrench in the automotive center at W-M. Sadly, I just don't think it's going to change.

Created in the image of God, every person, every culture, every style, every voice expresses a view of Him that cannot be complete without every piece fitted together.  For every lyricist, there is a [non-poet] whatever we may be. 

What are you?  Poet? Wise Acre? Or Someone who...?


...on an unrelated topic...every time I look at a blog these days, a blogger has scooped a topic  I have thought of and may even have a post underway on it.  Is that a good sign or a bad one?  I don't want to seem like I am going around copying.


WW: A Food Story.

 No kidding.  It got like this.


 Attitudes suffered.

 Not all of them.

I hate don't love doing this with the whole crew along.

I was dancing, too. No, I mean I was literally dancing in the aisle at the store.

I wonder if mercy and grace taste like ice cold milk

Linking with Wordful Wednesday at...

parenting BY dummies