Friday, December 31, 2010

I'm pretty sure I stepped on a thigh

Mike and I are gathering with friends for a pre-New Year's Eve bash - complete with two kids under 2 ft tall. I offered to make my amazing, stunning, much asked for lasagna (full disclosure: every other dish I make tends to come out burnt, which may explain why the lasagna is so popular). One problem: I didn't have the necessary ingredients.

"That's fine," I thought. "I'll go after my afternoon nap."

Ha! I couldn't have known that 2/3 of Richmonders had the same thought. My first clue should have been the lioness like cars who were stalking unsuspecting shoppers as they returned to their vehicles. The cars waited in a line until such a pedestrian was noticed, and then stealthily began following the shopper as he or she meandered various parking aisles. The cars then whipped around corners and screeched to a halt, flipped on their blinkers while they waited for their prey to disembark from this existence.

My second clue was the dearth of shopping carts inside the store. And then, finally, in case I had missed every other sign, the most obvious was the serpentine line that wound down various aisles as shoppers waited for an available cashier. Much mutterings and expletives were heard, including the oft-repeated phrase, "The line starts back there."

It took me 5 min. to gather my meager ingredients, and 25 min. to check out. In the rush to find the shortest line, I bumped into no less than 5 other shoppers and stepped on a toe (possibly a thigh; I can't be sure).

So my New Year's Resolution: next year, order pizza.

Thank God for high school boys

Sometimes being a stay at home mom (SAHM) is similar to being a single mom - except I get reprieve most evenings around 4:30 and on weekends. But during the day I have many errands and tasks that must be completed while also appeasing or herding a toddling toddler. If any other SAHMs can relate, I suggest we dub ourselves Professional Multi-Tasking Herders and create our own badges and slogan.

Anywho, today's obstacle challenge was to haul a 50-lb box into a post office for mailing while either dragging, carrying or luring a toddler to follow me. The luring worked up until I set her on the ground. Carrying might have worked had she been willing to sit on the box rather than lie on top of it. I didn't get to the dragging bit because like a knight on a white horse, a high school boy came to my rescue.

He had been in the truck parked near my car and watched as my follies unfolded. He gallantly exited his vehicle and offered to carry my parcel inside for me. What a guy!

Thus today's task was a success and I was able to move on to the next obstacle: herding my now fussy toddling toddler toward her pen ... I mean, crib.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas really is about

This was our first Christmas, really, as a family of 3. Last year Addie was just 3 months old when this festive holiday occurred, so her participation was limited to staring at the tree's twinkling lights. This year we took Addie on 2 tours of the Tacky Christmas Lights, introduced her to movie classics like "The Christmas Story," allowed her to sample Christmas cookies and watched with glee as she ripped into her gifts Christmas morning.

And yet the holiday felt empty.

Some of that hollowness can be attributed to the dearth of spiritual activities. We didn't attend nary a Christmas pageant nor Christmas Eve service. No caroling or singing of any Christmas hymns. No reading of the Christmas story from the Bible. Seemingly no focus at all on the meaning of this season - save for a toy nativity set that Addie received Christmas Eve, which she promptly shoved in her mouth.

So even with all the trappings of the holiday (commercial or otherwise), I still feel like the day came and went without much stirring in my heart. I didn't pause to rejoice at the thought of God becoming man. I didn't contemplate the awe felt by shepherds as they were visited by angels. Nor did I reflect on how Jesus' birth was the first step in His earthly life that would eventually lead to a cross on a hill.

I wish I could hit repeat and re-do this Christmas season because I feel like it passed by without me so much as glancing past the flashiness to see the humble manger.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Classic Indecency

I recently joined a local book club for a few reasons: meet new people, read undiscovered literature, create opportunities for sharing God's love. I eagerly checked out this month's selection, Lady Chatterley's Lover, only to find the book seemed to earn the "classic" designation simply because the author flagrantly defied decency laws when he wrote it. D. H. Lawrence penned this piece of fiction in 1928 from his sanctuary in Italy. Copies of his book eventually were smuggled into the UK, where it ran afoul of their decency laws. A trial was held in 1960, and the UK government eventually loosened laws regarding what was considered obscene.

This post, however, isn't about what four-letter words were used and how often. It's more about my reaction to the book. I read nearly a fourth of the novel before I simply couldn't stand the author's desensitized description of casual sex. In fact, I think the last chapter I completed ended with Lady Chatterley's crippled husband urging her to have sex with other men in order to conceive a child. His one stipulation: she choose men he would approve.

I'm planning to attend the book discussion Tuesday night, but at this point I'm not sure what to say other than I disagree with the author. Sex is not like a conversation in which partners can easily be swapped and traded. And I have yet to meet a man or woman who could say that random sex didn't cost them something as much as it rewarded them.

This should make for an interesting discussion.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Painting with Pudding

The other day we tried an experiment involving vanilla pudding and food coloring. I think it was a smashing success.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Coming Full Circle

So long ago that I can't recall the year, I sat in a German hotel lobby talking with a co-worker/friend about how to strike up a conversation with anyone and how to eventually introduce spiritual topics into the conversation. To date, I had struggled to figure out how to "live my faith" without going door-to-door. I would usually freeze up when opportunities arose to meet a stranger or to say anything of substance.

Flash forward to present day.

One of those mentors, Derek, is now located in Richmond and is looking to plant a church. He and I have continued to email through the years, and he emailed me about the vision God has given him. Mike and I met with Derek and his family plus a few other families to talk about the beginnings of Radiate. I can't wait for this adventure to begin.

Mike and I have talked sporadically for years about being more involved in spreading the Gospel. Now we'll get hands on mentoring in how to start a gathering from scratch, to get a feel for the needs of a city, and to (gulp) meet and converse with strangers.

So in that vein, I am meeting with a group of moms this Tuesday. At one of their homes. To make sushi. And I've never met a single one of them. I'm terrified. But I'm also excited to actually practice what I have learned through the years about making friends and influencing people.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Too Much Time

Addison is almost a year old. How did this happen???

Here's a quick roundup of all that I neglected to communicate:
- I quit my job in June in order to stay home with Addie. It was the best decision I've ever made. I love being a sahm and seeingall her developmental milestones: her crawling, babbling, tooth-growing, etc.

- Addie and I visited my family in July for a few week. It was a good visit but not relaxing by any standard. A friendwisely told me that I have to change my expectations fro
m "vacations are for me to relax" to "vacations are for me to ensure Addie has fun and is safe." The two aren't always the same.

- Mike and I took Addie in August to the OBX and Asheville. We visited a few music halls to listen to down-home bluegrass music, hiked a little, and slept. A lot.

-Now it's Sept. and I'm trying to understand how my baby girl has become an almost toddler. Life is definitely moving on!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Bevis Giggle

We have said that Addison's laugh sounds like Bevis and Butthead and we tried to catch it on camera. This is just a preview because she didn't get rolling like she has in the past.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Almost There

Addison is just at the point of almost rolling over on her own. She gets about halfway on to her side before deciding, "hmmm, I think I like the view better back over on my back." But she's trying.

She's also developed a laugh that is reminiscent of Bevis and Butthead. We've tried to catch it on camera but she's reticent to laugh on cue. Probably because she knows we're mocking her.

Last week Addison topped out at 12.4 lbs. Mike will take her to the dr this week for her 4 month check up. I expect him to say she is still 50 percentile in weight and height, and she still has a large noggin. That's ok; she needs all the space for her brains.

We also battled our first sickness last week. I'd forgotten how difficult it is to function on 4 hrs of sleep each night, but we survived. Mike would hold her from 11 pm - 3 am, and I'd take over until 7 am. Mike then stayed home with her while I trudged off to work. Sigh. My heart and mind were with her even if my body was not.

I'm thinking of writing a book for Addison and calling it, "The You that Almost Wasn't." I want to write down our journey of infertility, tell her about the near miscarriage, explain how she beat the odds to develop full-term and how she truly is a gift from God. Sounds great - now I just need to do it.