2 Blondes and a Ginger

2 Blondes and a Ginger

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Don't Judge Me

A few weeks ago, the whole family was at Target, and Jeff watched the kids as I looked at some clothes. They were doing some remodeling, so there was a huge open space that the kids took advantage of. Graham and Lucy were running around, tackling each other, and laughing hysterically. They were a little loud, but they were cute.

Finally one young woman said, "It so nice to see a family with two kids who aren't about to kill each other. They are so cute. My son looks a lot like your son, and I'm expecting my second." I replied with something like, "Oh thank, you. They're pretty fun." And then I went on my way with my head held a little higher. She thought my family was cute and sweet. Brownie points for me!

Just imagine if the very next day, I happened to be at a book store during story time. And just try to picture my one year old throwing tantrums and my 3 year old refusing to share (This is all hypothetical of course). And then imagine me saying, "Graham, if you don't share, we are going to leave." And then picture me actually following through with this threat and my 3 year old screaming hysterically as I drug him and his sister out of the store. It was embarrassing. I had never had an experience quite that intense as far as tantrums go. And of course I wondered what the other parents thought of me and both of my kids. Brownie points deducted.

So don't judge me and my family if you see us being all cute and sweet to each other. If you run into me at the grocery store and see me telling my kids about every fruit and vegetable and what letter it starts with and what country it comes from, please don't judge me. I'm not always like that. And if you see me out at a restaurant and my kids are throwing food on the floor, screaming at the top of their lungs, and you see me scolding them or maybe ignoring them...don't judge me. I'm not always like that either.

You see, sometimes I look like I'm the good mom and I'm always attentive and always teaching and always gently rebuking my kids when they mess up. And sometimes I'm the bad mom telling my kids they can have a cookie after they're good at the grocery store and then stuffing one in their mouth at the beginning of the trip just to keep them from crying. In any given day, hour, or even minute I might do something that the world thinks as good and something that the world thinks as bad. And sometimes I'm confused about what really is the good mom thing to do and what really is the bad mom thing to do. And when I feel so overwhelmed, that I might not survive the little years, I rest on Jesus and trust that through my good mom moments and through my bad mom moments, He reigns supreme. Nothing...absolutely nothing can thwart his plans for me and my kids. To think otherwise would be giving myself or someone else too much credit. If you do feel the need to judge, may I direct you to my Savior who is perfect, blameless, and abounding in steadfast love. If I'm going to be judged, I'd like to be judged in light of my Jesus on whom all my hope is fixed. My bad mom days and even my good mom days are covered by his grace and his grace alone.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

To the Moon And Back

I'm not sure when I'll stop getting sentimental and nostalgic over birthdays. It hasn't happened yet. It's a sweet day for me, and I hope my kids feel its special for them too. Like a video, I play the events in my head that led up to Graham's birth. It was a rough day. But being removed from that day by three years, I can say it was a beautiful day. I remember the hard things about the weeks that led up to Graham's birth, but I also remember seeing my first child for the first time, and nothing can put a damper on that.

This year was fun because Graham was definitely aware that it was his birthday. Jeff and I blew up balloons and threw them all over Graham's room last night. I also taped streamers to his doorway. When he woke up this morning, I heard him crying for me.
"What's wrong Graham?"
"The balloons don't have strings! What happened to the strings? The ones at Chick-fil-A have strings!"

He was seriously crying over the balloons. Not exactly the response I was looking for. I guess the boy likes balloons with helium!

Then, I made him some pancakes with sprinkles and M&M's on top. He blew out the candles in his pancakes, and then ate the M&M's. That was all he had for breakfast...M&M's. We went to Bible Study, the park for lunch, and Graham's favorite restaurant for dinner. We had lots of phone calls, texts, Skype conversations, snail mail, and Jib Jab e-cards. And then I curled up with Graham on the couch and read him On The Night You Were Born. After the story, we flipped threw a photo book from his first year of life and talked about the day he entered the world.

So it was a normal day, and it was a special day all at the same time. Sometimes parents think their kids hung the moon, and for just a moment please allow me to think that too. He's a full of life, fun-loving, imaginative, tenderhearted, hot dog eating, football loving, sweet big brother and son. And I love him to the moon and back.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Something's Gotta Give

Despite the fact that my husband is against New Year's resolutions, I obliged him to set "goals" with me for 2012. We had some of the typical and unrealistic goals that everyone else and their mother also set this year. But we also talked about how we want to pray for our kids after we put them to bed at night and how we want to read through the Bible in the next year. It probably won't happen. But you gotta aim high, right?

I also started contemplating the million other things that I would love to do in the coming year. I want to be more organized. I want to have birthday cards ready to send out to every friend and relative. I want to have lesson plans for my kids each week. I want to cook amazing yet healthy food. I want to sew some of my kids' clothes. I want to learn to take good pictures. I want to read more Classics. I want to read more theological books. I want to plant a garden. I want to can foods from my garden. And so on. And so on. I didn't really write all these things down on my official goal list, but they were thoughts just lingering around. My mind started going crazy with all the things I would like to be better at. And the list became exhausting. Really it did. Something's gotta give. And just what would it be?

A wise woman in my church said that we should pray every morning, "God show me what you would have me do today." I think those will be the first words from my heart every morning. (Please ignore the fact that this is probably another unrealistic goal). I might have to throw my goals to the wayside so I can do what God would have me do each day. Because the problem is that they are my goals, and they may not be God's goals. I'm not convinced that setting resolutions are bad, but I am convinced that they are burdensome and destructive when they become idols. My resolutions should never ever interfere with the answer to this simple question, "What would God have me do TODAY?"

So I rest in Jesus. I rest in him who has lived a perfect life and has finished the race for me. I surrender each day and all my goals to him and hope and pray that I do what he would have me do every moment of my life. Something's gotta give. Something's gotta give me hope, and peace, and patience, and gentleness when my goals aren't met and even when my goals are met lest I become prideful and arrogant. Rest in Jesus my dear friends. Rest in his abounding love and free grace in this new year.

Starting the New Year With A Bang!

I'm starting the New Year out with a bang...that is...in the kitchen of course. I decided I would make my friend's 8 minute tomato soup. I wanted something besides a grilled cheese or PB&J, and I could handle 8 minutes. First, I put the soup in a pot that was too small...the cream quickly overflowed. Next, I moved the soup to be pureed in the blender. I turned it on and was nearly frozen in shock. Hot tomato soup flying all across myself and the entire kitchen. I couldn't find the "Off" button soon enough. Needless to say, 8 minute soup turned into 45 minute soup by the time I got myself, my cabinets, and my appliances all clean. To be honest, it's almost 4 in the afternoon, and I still haven't cleaned it up completely. I know I'm a domestic goddess. Really, really, you don't have to flatter me with compliments on my awesome cooking and cleaning skills.

I've set some goals for myself this year which I hope to post about later, but I think I have a goal to set for Graham: learn to get dressed by himself. I asked him to completely dress himself this morning. What did I find? Graham with his underwear on backwards, his shirt on backwards, and his jeans on backwards. I think we may need to work on that! When I tell him he needs to turn his underwear around, he always replies, "But I like it that way! I can't see Thomas if I turn it around." Those silly underwear makers. Why do they sometimes put the design on the rear end part of the underwear? My kid wants to see the Mickey Mouse, the Thomas, the Buzz Light Year!

So that's life in 2012 so far. Disasters in the kitchen, backwards clothing, and Miss Lucy Paige who is so proud of herself and her new found skill...walking! Go Lucy!