Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Great Expectations. Or Just Some Expectations. Whatever.

WARNING: This post contains graphic content relating to REAL LIFE CHILDREN WITH A REAL LIFE STOMACH BUG.  Reader discretion is advised.

Not so long ago, The Hubs read a book that included the major tenets of Buddhism.  We love us some Jesus in this house but he is one of those intellectual types that reads to learn.  Me?  Oh, I read such literary classics as Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site and the complete works of Barbara Park (see: Junie B. Jones books 1-1,000,000).

One of the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism is that suffering exists because of unfulfilled expectations.  Therefore, if you expect nothing, you will suffer nothing, because you will never be disappointed.

Well.  Let me assure you that dear old Buddha never tried to maneuver through Back To School Week while fighting a stomach bug which spread to 2/3 of his offspring.

Note to future mamas: Here's the thing about being sick--the mom just doesn't get to participate. No matter how bad you feel, unless you are dying you must carry on.  It's just a fact of life so don't try telling your husband about your misery because HE CAN'T COME HOME EARLY TODAY BECAUSE HE HAS A DEADLINE.  Or something.

Here's how it went down.  It started on a Thursday night at midnight with Middle Child vomiting in his bed like a boss.  I mean we had to strip it down to the mattress and put it in the washing machine right then because of the sheer volume of it all.  One hour later All Knowing Second Grader woke us up again to say Middle Child had just completed round 2.

At this point I switched places with All Knowing Second Grader and slept in the room with a child who continued to vomit every 30 minutes for 2-3 hours before collapsing in exhaustion.

Cue 7:00 AM.  I sneak out of the room, telling myself all I need is coffee in large measure and I will make it.  It's Friday, the day moms everywhere mail it in because we have NOTHING LEFT TO GIVE by 3:00 PM.  All I wanted from this day was to get one kid off to school and then drag the other two around doing 17,000 errands because two kids is kinda like zero kids as long as there are plenty of snacks in the backseat and the soundtrack to Cars plays on repeat.  Stupid expectations.

One sip of coffee and my stomach sends my brain the very clear message that I should not have tried to put a foreign object in it. You see where this is going.

Then The Baby wakes up.  I hobble in to get her up and before I open the door I can SMELL IT.  She is sitting up in her bed, dressed in footie pajamas, a sleep sack, and approximately three gallons of vomit.

Another note to future mamas: Once you bring your little love into the world, you will quickly be forced to throw all repulsion caused by other people's bodily "mishaps" out the window.  You cannot change a dirty diaper worn by a vomit-ridden baby while also holding your shirt over your mouth and nose.  It is not humanly possible.  I know this for a fact.

The Hubs put her in the bath and had to wash her sweet, golden feathers-for-hair three times to get it out.  Her hair is only one inch long.

Meanwhile, I was hiding silently in bed hoping he would forget his day job.


He turned on Netflix and slowly backed away with a promise to return for lunch.  I spent the morning literally lying in the living room floor letting Middle Child watch endless episodes of Rescue Bots while The Baby did...something. I'm a tad fuzzy on this particular issue.

Thankfully sick children sleep more than usual, so The Baby slept most of the afternoon. And bless his heart, The Hubs did come home for lunch at which point I pretended I was alone in the house and just got in bed and went to sleep, again allowing the Transformers to babysit my son.  Winning.

By the evening I had pretty much given up on life and when The Hubs came home I went straight to bed.  Then End.

Except we repeated the night time part of this saga three more times throughout the next week. Except the kids traded vomit for something worse.  Except the one time The Hubs was putting The Baby to bed and she just started vomiting all over him and all over the floor on the way to the bathroom.

I prayed for the rapture several times.

Final note to future mamas: As part of your criteria in choosing a husband I strongly suggest you try to pre-determine how he will handle being completely covered in someone else's vomit.  If you are already married and unsure of this, ask your mom friends to borrow a sick baby.  I promise they will loan you one.

But we hobbled to victory and have been mess free for four whole days.  FOUR WHOLE DAYS, HALLELUJAH! Once again my awesome tribe came through and dropped off a week's supply of Gatorade and crackers and brought All Knowing Second Grader home from school while remaining at a safe distance in their cars with the windows rolled up.  You can never be too careful.

I am feeling certain that even if I had gone so far as to expect this to happen I would still label it as suffering. My dad likes to say I feel things acutely. I say to him, and to every other father who is (probably mistakenly) reading this, call your mother and wax rhapsodic about her virtue. Or send flowers.  Or if you live in this house, ice cream will suffice.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Miss Marple, Kroger, and That Time I Took a Baby Rafting

Today a disaster of epic proportions occurred.

We just got home from a lovely vacation in Crested Butte, Colorado. It was a great couple of weeks, despite having to sleep on the top bunk in a room that stayed precisely 80* during the night, and was also filled with all of my children.

As only responsible parents would, we took The Baby, who cannot even walk, on a rafting trip.

So today we hit the ground running.  I had a doctor's appointment first thing, and our precious babysitter Becca came over bright and early, which I know is every college girl's dream at 8:15 am the last week of summer vacation.  She is a gem and I will not give you her number.

Upon realizing all I had to feed my entire family for breakfast was cinnamon toast made from hamburger buns, I stopped by Kroger on the way home.

I walked in and stopped at the floral department first thing, because when I get home from Crested Butte every year I live a better version of my life for about six weeks that is filled with healthy dinners, fresh flowers, good smelling candles, clean and ironed laundry, etc.  It wears off about Halloween.

(Incidentally go straight to and buy this right now.  I am best-friends-in-my-head with Joanna Gaines, and her signature candle is amazing.  Jojo always knows best.  You can take that to the bank.)

I grabbed some flowers then started shopping.  That's when it happened.

I literally bumped into a new shelf that wasn't there two weeks ago when I was shopping for our trip. Oops, clumsy me, better pay more attention.

Then it happened again.

Then I went to the next aisle, which should have been filled with a delicious assortment of La Croix, with which I am slightly obsessed, and there was nothing but soda.  Soda for miles and miles and miles. Then I couldn't find baby food or granolabarsorsoaporeggsor OH MY SWEET AUNT WHERE IS EVERYTHING?

I swear it was just like that scene in Flight of the Navigator where David wakes up in the ditch and goes back to his house only to find it inhabited by an older couple who look pitifully at him and ask him if he's lost while he screams and runs through their house looking for his parents.

All poor David wanted was to see a familiar face. And look what happened to him. I am not that far away from this.

Close to hyperventilation I found a Kroger employee who gave me an alphabetical list of the new locations of major items.  I rolled my cart around with my nose to that paper for AN HOUR.  AN HOUR, PEOPLE.  At Kroger.  My Kroger.  The place I have been Vacationing Alone Every Sunday From 5:15-6:00 PM Since September 2014.

It was a travesty, I tell you.

Then on the way home I drove straight through the TCU campus (big mistake) and it was filled with thousands hundreds tens of new students and their parents walking aimlessly, looking for their dorms. According to Google Maps I live precisely 1.0 mile (4 minutes without traffic) from Kroger. It took me 15 minutes to get home.

While waiting for the millionth SUV-- let's be honest it was a 2015 Lexus LX because this is TCU and RIF BAM something-- to turn left into a parking lot across one solid mile of oncoming traffic, it hit me.

I am getting old.  Only old people are mad when their grocery store gets rearranged.  Only old people are mad at 18-year old babies wandering around their new homes trying to get things straight in their heads.  Only old people want to eat an early dinner and put everyone to bed so they can put on their pajamas and watch Miss Marple on Netflix.

And you know what?  I am not even sitting here trying to remedy this problem in my mind.  I am sitting here, typing it for the world to see and owning it.  Three kids at three different schools and homemade dinner most nights and soccer and ballet and a husband who occasionally has to disappear for two weeks for trials-- those things make you old.

But they also give me an abundance of memories for which I am forever grateful, as well as make for really good stories, like the time the hubs left for a trial one week before The Baby's due date and ended up coming home in the nick of time, or the time I may or may not have had a babysitter to watch my younger kids during All Knowing Second Grader's ballet observation day, but mindlessly dropped her off and wandered Target alone for an hour instead. Don't judge.

So this is my announcement to all my readers reader:

I'm an old lady and I don't care.  I like early dinners and quiet houses and for the love of everything that is good in this world, I like my grocery stores to keep everything EXACTLY WHERE IT WAS TWO WEEKS AGO.  It is what it is, as my old boss used to say.  In a life where I had a job and talked to adults all day.  Which is pretty much erased from my memory because as I have already told you I am old, and old people's minds are a teensy bit fuzzy.

One final, personal note to my friends and family - If I leave to go to the grocery store, and I don't return within an hour, please come look for me because I am likely lost in the Kroger on South University.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Dear New Mama

True story: Yesterday I took my sweet six-month-old to the pool.  She doesn't love to get her face wet, but she let me dunk her once.  When she came up out of the water SHE WAS SEVEN YEARS OLD AND ALMOST ALL HER FRONT TEETH WERE MISSING.

Okay not exactly true but it really does seem that way in my mind.  All-Knowing First Grader (soon to be Second Grader I might add) was swimming yesterday while I was sitting in the splash pad with The Baby and she yelled, "Mommy watch me!"  She did two front flips then came up with the biggest smile on her sweet little face and I seriously found myself all verklempt and wanting to ask the kids to talk amongst themselves.  I could not wrap my brain around how we got here so fast.  So. Fast.

That's how I landed here: a note to new mamas.  The ones who feel like they are drowning in dirty diapers and spit up.  The ones who haven't slept more than three hours in a row in six months. The ones who are just trying to live to fight another day.  I have something to say to you.  And it's not "enjoy this because it will be over before you know it." While this is absolutely true, it is also absolutely unhelpful to a new mama who feels like she's literally going to die the next time her bundle of joy wakes up at 2:00 AM and her husband just keeps snoring because let's be honest - he can't feed her, right?

I see you.

I see you running your marathon, because I'm running it too.  I am slightly ahead of you, maybe 100 yards, but I am here, and we are both starving/out of breath/feeling like we didn't train enough for this.

Hear me when I say this, I am with you in your exhaustion.  I am with you in your frustration.  I am with you in your lack of sleep, your longing to eat a meal from start to finish without getting up, in your desire to shower without a little face looking at you through the glass while she sits in her bouncy seat and screams bloody murder.  And don't even start on body image.

You are not alone.

I thought I was alone seven years ago.  I was convinced all my new mom friends had babies who were sleeping perfectly, eating perfectly, and pooping rainbows with a happy smile on their chubby little faces.  I felt alone in my little world of being home with this tiny human who cried approximately 23 hours per day.  No one was talking about how hard our job was.  We were smiling and looking perfectly put together and sending the message that we were pretty much nailing this new baby thing.

When I finally started to wade into the water of suggesting to some close friends that this mom thing was not as easy as I thought it would be, it was like a dam broke.  Every single one of them, and I mean EVERY SINGLE ONE started telling stories of horrible sleep, nursing strikes, traumatic diaper issues, and bodies they barely recognized when they looked in the mirror.  And I realized that we all needed to feel the freedom to just say what we were thinking, namely that being a mother is no joke. And when you are brand new at this job, learning everything the hard way because you've never been 100% responsible for another human life at all times, it can be excruciatingly painful and downright scary.  And friend, it is okay to feel like that.

You are not crazy.  You are normal.  You have been thrown into the deep end and you have to figure out how to swim while holding an 8-pound weight who is crying and scratching your face.  It's okay to feel like you are going to lose it.  THIS JOB IS HARD.

The good news is there are lots of us who are also in the water with you.  And those of us who have been thrown the life-preserver that comes with admitting we are tired and scared and need a break will gladly extend the preserver to you.  We get it.  We have been there and some of us are still there (I have had kids three and under in my house for eternity quite some time).

Please be brave enough to be honest.  I am willing to bet that you will not find judgment.  I really think you will find an understanding face, a listening ear, a gentle voice, and maybe, if your friend is really something special, a cocktail during the lovely hours of 3:00-5:00 PM.

New Mama, you are doing a great job. I am yelling this to you at the top of my Interwebs voice - YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB. Don't let the father of lies tell you that you aren't. God made you specifically to be your child's mother, and He doesn't make mistakes.  But you don't have to go it alone.  There are so many women around you who are running this race with you, and you need to get into the middle of the pack where people can encourage you, hand you a water bottle, give you suggestions for better running music, and hold your baby when your arms are ready to fall off.  We are ready and waiting.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

when you're the Needy One (otherwise entitled: find your tribe)

Well.  We have had an un-lovely turn of events around here lately.  It's no secret to most of you that my little sister had brain surgery this morning to remove a tumor.  I say little but honestly she is like five inches taller than me and built like a runway model so it really just makes me feel better about myself to call her little.

She is out of surgery but I haven't had the final word on the tumor.  The surgery was expected to last 3-4 hours, but ended up taking just over an hour, which is a good sign.

But today I am not writing about her.  It's too fresh, and I am not sure what I have to say about it yet.

Today I am writing about my tribe.  You know, the people who surround you and peel you off the floor and love your children and feed your family and pray when you just can't pray any more...those people. They know who they are and the would NOT want credit so I won't name them.

For the past several weeks I have been the Needy One amongst us.  I had minor surgery a couple weeks ago and was down and out for about three days.  In this time they carted my children around, fed us, checked on me, and prayed.  It felt warm and fuzzy.

Then we got the tumor diagnosis.  If you have gone through something like that before, and I know several of you have, you will understand when I say it doesn't seem real.  It's like a movie.  You just crumple on impact with that kind of news.

Then Middle Child got strep.  And it would. not. go. away.  I carted him to the doctor three times in a week and had his meds changed, and finally ended up having to hold him down for a horrible penicillin shot.  Then The Baby got croup.  Nothing major, but just a relentless feeling that we couldn't go one day without issues.  Then the hubs reminds me he's out of town the night of the surgery.  Then my routine doctor's appointment lasts two hours and I miss my first chance to visit my sister before her procedure. And on, and on, and on.

While dealing with a brain tumor and impending surgery in a person you assumed would be around for another 70 years (the women in my family live FOREVER).

It was just a lot. I became the Needy One.

And those same precious people plus several more have continued to take care of my children, feed my family, and make sure I don't completely lose my mind.  They have assumed the position that if it is happening to me, it is happening to them. These are the same sweet hands that lovingly came and cleaned my kitchen (which was more than just a little messy) and prayed over me when I could not get off my couch or keep up with the pace of my life at nine months pregnant with a husband who was out of town for three weeks.  They are the same hands who have skipped lessons and meetings and time with their families to be with mine.

They have continually called and texted me for 24 hours now, knowing when the surgery was taking place and that I couldn't be with my family.  They have offered to keep my three children for however long I need them to, even though they have two or three of their own.

They have sat on my porch and told me hilarious stories about their children and just let me not talk about me for a while.  They have planned dinners and coffees and nights on the porch with wine because I can't just be a zombie all the time.

And they have prayed and prayed and prayed. And then prayed some more because I just could. Not. Pray. Any. More.  They stood in the gap for me and held up my hands because I just couldn't do it any more.  The feeling has moved from warm and fuzzy to overwhelming gratitude and love.

These are my people.  This is my tribe.

So here is my plea to you: find your tribe.  We live in a broken world and life-altering things happen sometimes.  Most people won't experience real tragedy in their lives, but we will all experience the death of a loved one, spouses who have to be gone when we need them home, sickness, and just the exhaustion that is being a parent/spouse/friend/child/homeroom mom/soccer coach/HUMAN BEING.

And let me tell you, going it alone is not the way.  I HATE being the Needy One.  I am much better when I am on the giving end of a relationship.  I have said as much to several of these people and they have literally told me to shut my mouth because that's not how this works.

And thank you Jesus, they are right.  They are not keeping score and waiting for the day I return all the favors they have done for me.  They just love me, mostly because they love Jesus, but also because they are just that way. And they keep giving.

And that is how we get through life.  It's how we see good things like hope, peace, laughter and light. Those things are found in sweet babies who don't belong to you, but squeal and reach for you when you come up the steps, stories of completely hilarious inappropriate things a Kindergarten girl tells you about the boy next door, the constant beeping of my phone as I sit here and write because people are thinking of me and rejoicing when I rejoice, and mourning when I mourn.

Find your tribe. Then give of yourself like you hope they would give of themselves when you are the Needy One.  Because you will be the Needy One someday.  And when you are, let them give to you. Don't fight it, don't keep them out of your house because it isn't clean and you' haven't showered, and FOR THE LOVE DON'T KEEP APOLOGIZING (they hate that).

Our God is three in one, fellowship is part of who He is. Own it.  Find them.  You will not be sorry.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

fasten your seat belts, kiddies

We are marriage mentors at our church. [Insert laugh here]. This means that sweet, unsuspecting engaged couples come into our home to meet with us six times before they get married to talk about all sorts of Things.  We are supposed to facilitate Open Communication and guide them through a range of topics so that once they are under one roof, they can navigate potential issues and misunderstandings with ease.

Confession: I feel like an imposter.

I mean I'm not really -- we've actually been happily married  for 11 years and added three children along the way. But we aren't really wise sage-types with decades of experience. Also we are drowning in massively enjoying "little kid" mode, which looks sweet and adorable when you are 23 and engaged and wishing to just stay home and raise babies as a vocation.  But when you are 34 and staying home and raising those babies it looks a teeny bit different. 


Valentine's Day came and went a couple weeks ago.  We were both nodding off when this conversation occurred:

Me: Hey today was Valentine's Day.
Hubs: I know. It was pretty awesome.
Me: Should we tell our cute little couple what Valentine's Day will be like for them in 10-15 years? Like how I am recovering from sinus surgery with two black-ish eyes and a swollen face and all hopped up and useless on pain meds and I have a bed buddy on my back because it hurts from carrying a 20-pound baby in a carseat and you can't work out because you "tweaked" your back bending over to pick something up from the coffee table and how we are not even ashamed anymore to be excited about going to sleep at 9:00 pm? 
Hubs: We shouldn't kill their dreams.
Me: (snoring because I already fell asleep and I am mouth-breathing after surgery)

Ah, romance.

I have compiled a short list of things we will not bring up during our sessions.

1. Sharing a bathroom with someone of the opposite sex is like navigating a minefield of completely unfamiliar and sometimes dry-heave-disgusting things. And before you saddle up on that high horse ladies, let's be honest--this goes both ways. I will not elaborate further.

2. Your Friday night dinner dates will probably at some point become more like the traveling circus, complete with little people, the fat [baby]lady, and people putting amazing and sometimes dangerous items in their mouths that were NEVER MEANT TO GO THERE FOR THE LOVE. In our time this has also included acrobatics such as eating dinner while standing and bouncing an infant, as well as too many people exiting a small car in the parking lot.

3. There will be times when, well, this:
August 4, 2011 FB Status
This pretty much sums up my day: I'm wearing the same shirt I slept in and it's covered in spit up. Middle Child is in his fourth outfit not counting pajamas. And The All Knowing First Grader (three years old at the time) is sobbing in her room because I won't let her put her finger in a pencil sharpener. 

4. While you will gain the invaluable gift of having someone who will (hopefully) always tell you the truth, sometimes the truth can be painful.  One time The All-Knowing First Grader and I were playing "Who Am I?" and her clue was, "I am someone who is kinda old and who has long brown hair that is always in a ponytail." And guess who that was? Better yet, guess who told me she wasn't wrong?

BUT, all this mess plus the one million things I would never actually put in writing get you here, which makes it more than worth the trouble:

You will, indeed, find ways to escape and have adult conversations and watch whole movies at a time and sleep all night and go to the gym and a fancy restaurant and try on clothes in a dressing room without a small audience get the picture. But when two become one, typically two become more like four or five, which means you are bound to be in for a bumpy ride sometimes.

We will not mention these things to our precious couple.  They will figure them out.  Then they will practice the tried and true ritual of calling their married friends/friends with kids/their suddenly genious parents and saying, "Why didn't you tell me...?" And those people will chuckle and tell them the truth, "You never would have believed me."

Monday, February 16, 2015

the weeds are always greener

I have been trying to write this post for a while now, over the pleas of a three-year-old in the living room. 

"Mommy, I need you to bwing me a snack saped like a diamond."
"Mommy, I need a o-wange snack to eat."

Not conducive to deep thinking, but I am sitting here typing anyway.  If you choose to keep reading, you've been warned.

We are following the life of Moses in our Bible study.  I am a little embarrassed to say I have been a believer for almost 30 years and this is the first time I have read all the way through the life of this great patriarch of our faith.  This is largely due to the fact that it requires reading Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.  Okay really just Leviticus.

But thus far, I have (mostly) persevered.  Admittedly there were sections I skimmed, like oh, say, temple construction and the bazillion laws God gave the Israelites, not to mention all the sacrifices.  But sandwiched in between all that, there is some gold to be mined.  As it turns out, there is actual application to my life.  Funny how God means what He says about ALL scripture being God-breathed and useful.

To give you some context, I am about two years into the Israelites wandering in the dessert.  Poor lil muffins didn't know they had 38 years left, or that none of them would actually see the Promised Land. They felt like it had been an eternity already.

If it were our little family unit, I'm pretty sure it would have been going about like this:

God: Okay, time to get moving.  Everybody up and at 'em!
Meredith: Um, we just got here.  I just got this bag unpacked and changed the baby's diaper.  Also the big kids are starving and refusing to walk another inch.  Also it's 1,000 degrees outside, which is giving the baby a heat rash so she's crying non-stop. Also we are sick of eating the same thing every day.  I mean it's great and all that you rain literal food down from heaven for us every morning, but the natives are restless and we need some variety.  Also my husband is thinking about going paleo so some meat and vegetables would be nice.
God: One more word and you're all toast.  I will start this whole thing over with just Moses and his family.
Meredith: Sheesh, we're going, we're going.  Don't be so serious all the time.

During the lecture last week, it was pointed out that the monotony of the Israelites' terrain was starting to get to them.  Every day, they woke up and gathered manna and ate it for every meal.  Every day, there was some sort of sacrifice to be made.  Every day, they stared at the cloud of God's presence to see if it would move.  Every night, they slept in a tent, on makeshift beds with all their children.

Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. 

They were ready to go back to Egypt.  Enough of this manna!  At least in Egypt they'd had a variety of food! I mean never mind the slavery thing, full of beatings and forced labor, or the fact that the Pharoah had gone house to house throwing every male Israelite under the age of 1 into the Nile.  They had GARLIC AND CUCUMBERS.

Which made me think of this:

Every day, I wake up and make five breakfasts, sometimes all different.  Every day, I check the lunch menu and argue with the All Knowing First Grader about whether or not there will be PE and what constitutes "uniform acceptable attire." Every day I feed an infant three times at the table, four times nursing, and get up once at night to nurse her again.  Every day I manage homework, dishes, laundry, lessons, practices.  Every night, dinner.  Every night, we sleep in a bedroom that we had dreams of being renovated by this point, listening to the sound of the trains coming and going because our windows are terrible.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat.


And as the saying goes, familiarity breeds contempt.  So it goes with the monotony of daily life, but monotony also breeds complaining and comparison to go along with the contempt, and that's a toxic combo.  All of a sudden I find myself keenly aware of the new car my neighbor is driving while I'm still in the car that we theoretically bought to "destroy at the ranch."  And that nice privacy fence the neighbor has? That would be nice in our yard, instead of the chain-link reminiscent of a minimum security prison. Also the nanny that comes every week to watch the kids around the corner?  Sure would be nice if she could make a stop over here so I could go to the dentist alone.  That would be like a mini-vacation.  And the grass is REALLY green and pretty next door. Which is ridiculously UNFAIR because I know that guy doesn't do a single thing to take care of his lawn.  And on, and on, and on.  

And I know it goes both ways.  I know people who actually think we have it all together over here, and that they would be happier if they could only get their kids/spouse/house/job/whatever to be more like ours. Peace would ultimately ensue.

So I took a picture of our backyard.

Isn't it precious with it's smattering of all things children, and the new green grass starting to peek up?  Lovely. How about a close up?

Mmmm hmm.  Weeds.  That's not grass back there. Our ENTIRE backyard is covered in weeds.  That little patch of brown in the first picture is the only spot in the yard made up of actual grass, and that grass is dead. The weeds are so prolific that a small herd of goats could live here for a year before they went hungry.

I happen to hate weeds.  Hate. Them. I am weird about the yard.  It's kinda my thing.  I REALLY want the grass next door.  But that grass comes with single parenting.  I also hate my car.  I want a new one.  But that car in the driveway over yonder comes with a husband who has to be gone for weeks at a time for his job. And I want that nanny.  But that nanny comes at the expense of - well actual expense, which we have chosen to use elsewhere.  

Oh that I would lift my head up and see the picture of the yard where three happy, healthy children play and stop staring like an ungrateful idiot at the weeds; that every time I pull into my driveway in my giant of a car that I would be grateful I am coming home to a place where I know my husband will be home for dinner; that I would cherish the time with my children while they still live under my roof because it is SO fleeting.

May we be grateful and content to sit amongst the weeds.

Friday, February 6, 2015

you have to take yourself with you

There used to just be three of us in our little clan.  Two grown ups and one very demanding lovely toddler. I thought I would blog about our lives mostly as an outlet for my thoughts during the day since said toddler wasn't into discussions that branched away from Elmo or Caillou.  I also liked the thought of having a record for us to look back on later. It took a little of my "rare" spare time but I liked it. 

Then we moved.  Then we had another baby.  Then we moved again.  Then we had another baby. Bye bye spare time, it's been real.  No time to write, no time to read, don't even ask me how many times I shower in a week.  (Side note - that is not a cliche, talking about the reduction in showers once you have kids. That is a fact you can take to your grave. Side note #2 - I happen to love being home with three little people but oh my sweet aunt they never. slow. down). it turns out, I still need the outlet, lots of time or not.  As my girlfriends back in Dallas like to say, you have to take yourself with you.  And this self needs to write, three kids and all. I have Thoughts that are spinning circles in my little head and they need to GET OUT.  They are not Big Important Thoughts.  I am not a scholar. I do not run a huge company or travel to interesting and exotic places, although taking three children to the grocery store should be considered an Olympic event. But the Thoughts are there.

So here we are, resurrected from several years of silence. I spent a long time trying to figure out a new and improved name for the new and improved blog that I'm sure will be filled with new and improved material but I just couldn't think of anything that seemed appropriate for this new and improved stage in our lives. I complained about this to the hubs, who gently pointed out that there are, in fact, three of them now.  Three pint-sized humans taking up the majority of available real estate in our house, which was at a premium to begin with.

This is what my life looked like when this blog began:

Look at me! I can climb a mountain and go to the ocean WHILE PREGNANT. I mean, I feel tired and a little sick but I will persevere through these hardships. Oh silly, unsuspecting, well-rested twenty-somethings. Bless it.

This is what my life looks like now: 

Improvement, no?  Indeed.  I'm not really sure what this will look like in the future but I'm glad it's back up and running.  I think I said that the last time I started writing again. But this time I mean it, I swear.