Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Things I Know for Sure

Okay, so its a shameless nod to pop-culture diva Oprah. But I love Oprah. Anyway, these are some of the things I know for sure...and that I hope my kids grow up knowing for sure. Some of these overlap and may be redundant. If so, it just means its important enough to say in different ways. ;-)

1. Its always better to be yourself and maybe have few friends, than to have a gaggle of friends but not be true to yourself.

2. Whatever hard thing you're going through right now, it will pass. And God will get you through it.

3. Its more important to be kind than to be right. But you need to stand up for what you believe to be important. Just do it as kindly as you can.

4. You can almost always find some commonality somewhere with another matter how different you think you are from them. We're all God's children, after all.

5. There is no sense in beating yourself up over anything. If you do things in a way you're not proud of today, work to do better tomorrow. But beating yourself up won't change things...and you deserve to give yourself a break. You're definition you're not going to do everything right all the time. God still loves you anyway. And so does your family and your true friends.

6. One-on-one time giving others your complete attention is more attention than working to do anything "perfectly".

7. Music has the power to heal.

8. From birth to death, the best thing you can do is focus on knowing God better, and working to do what he wants for you. Be kind. Help people. Honor other human beings. Work for justice. Be humble...we all have faults and we all have done things we shouldn't do at one time or another. Be gentle with yourself...God made you just the way you are, and loves you just the way you are. Nobody is "better" than you...we're all just different, with different strengths and virtues, and different faults, weaknesses.

9. Sin is anything that hurts God because you aren't living the way She wants for you. Its good to think before you do something, "Would Jesus do this?" and/or "Would God be happy I'm doing this?".

10. Life goes by faster than you could ever imagine and the most important thing is to make the most of today. You can't do that if you spend too much time worrying about anything in the past, or thinking/planning/worrying about things in the future. A family full of happy hearts is more important than a clean house, perfect super-uber-healthy meals, being the "best" at something, or getting that A+. An A is perfectly fine. ;-)

11. Perfection is totally over-rated. Its a BAD thing.

12. Hug the ones you love every day. Tell them you love them every day.

13. Everyone in your life will disappoint you at some point. Nobody can be all you need at every moment. But God will always be there for you.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Resolution check in

Some of my New Year's Resolutions (I called them "promises to myself" in the hopes they would feel more like fun opportunities and less like "obligations") were to cook more healthy food for my family, and do more crafts with the kids.

I've done better on the cooking front than the crafts. It seems if I take the time to look up something "different" to do with the kids online, I'm not planning for meals very well. And if I dedicate myself to finding new healthy recipes, making menu plans and shopping lists, the crafts fall by the wayside.

I barely even try to keep the house all picked up. And I don't feel bad about this one...I think love and attention, be it emotional, social or intellectual, are more important than a clean house.

My cooking has consisted of a lot of crock pot meals. Some have been a big success, others nobody but me would touch. And even this one effort seems to be more than I can balance. Either it is super yummy, and not very healthy, or its healthy, and nobody wants it.

But through it all, my kids seem really happy and mostly healthy (winter, I'm ready to say bye bye to you!). Amelie has been "hosting" more and more elaborate tea parties for all her dolls (and her brother ;-). Evan is loving preschool, and is appreciative as ever of everything we do. "Thank you for making us this dinner, Mommy", he'll say. He and Amelie have more and more little conversations, and get along great (for the most part ;-). They just had their first session of a new religious ed. program at church. And after that we went for ice cream and then they played in the back yard with Daddy on their bikes for the first time this season.

And of course, I messed up dinner. I listed only half the cheese I needed for my crock pot mac n cheese, and so I thought the mozzarella cheese that was for another dish was intended for this. Mozzarella cheese in mac and cheese? Not so great. But the kids ate it up and called it yummy. And so now, Monday, I realize I'm not making what I had intended because I used the cheese for it mistakenly on something else. But oh well...Thankfully I have all the ingredients for a Rachel Ray pasta toss recipe.

But I still have a long way to go on my goal to spend more time just BEING with my children. They play on their own a lot of the time. And while there isn't anything inherently wrong with that (independent play and the ability to play independently are good things, and they also love each others' company), I know I spend too much time researching more recipes, looking for "the perfect craft", etc. What they will remember most isn't how well I cooked, or how fantastically creative any given craft was, but the time we spent together. They delight in the simplest of art making and just seem to love it every time I cook for them, no matter how it turns out. Kids have their priorities straight.

So I'm still plugging away at working on doing the same...with gratitude that no matter how well or poorly I do, they love me and seem to be very aware that I love them to pieces too.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Remember that thing....

I seriously need to start writing things down for later, or going right to the computer when there is a moment I want to capture forever. Right now I am thinking of this crazy thing Evan used to do right in the middle of the living room. It involved a lot of movement...spinning maybe? And some loud utterance, I can't remember if it was a phrase or singing. I'll have to ask Kevin in the morning.

Meanwhile Evan has fallen asleep in our bed. He's into sneaking into our bed at night now. I have to say, as I watch my babies grow up into little people, I don't mind so much.