Friday, October 29, 2010


I can't decide if today's beautiful thing is really a good thing or not.

That's not entirely true.  I know it's a good thing... I'm just not sure I like it that much right now.

See what you think.

Today I participated in the rare class party for one of my daughters.  I'm not saying the parties are rare, I'm saying my participation in them is rare.  I am not the mom who is in the classroom each week helping in the library or with math stuff or walking track or anything like that.  Not that being that mom is a bad thing.  I'm sure I should help out more.  But when the list is passed around at Back to School Night and all the slots are filled, I do sigh with relief.

But the call went out for help with an Amazing Race type Halloween party for 4th graders and I thought, "Now that's the type of party I can help with.  No 25 kids stuck in a room sucking down sugar at an alarming rate.  Fresh air.  Games.  All good."  (Not to mention that the last class party I helped with, I got thrown up at - not on, thank goodness!).

I kept my participation a secret from my daughter.  I thought she'd enjoy the surprise.  But I'm pretty sure the 3 yr old gave it away.  So I show up expecting a look of shock and pleasure and a huge hug... and I got a wave.  From across the room.  Oh, and a half smile.

So the party commenced and she did her part in the race.  And did not even say "Hi" to me when she was at my station.

Then they all went into the classroom to decorate a cookie.

Still no acknowledgement of my presence.  (At least she gave the 3 yr old a chocolate chip.)

Ahhhhh, independence.  I guess this is what I am here for - to train her up to be an independent person who does not need to rely on her mother.  And she is that - already - at 9.

I know it will serve her well as she gets older.  She will be brave enough to go to that college away from friends, or travel alone, or take that job in another country.  She will not need to rely on a man to define who she is, or friends to do the same.

She will be her own person - independent (and confident).

And that truly is a beautiful thing.  But right now the thought of it hurts a bit.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Coming Home

How can a door hold so much power?  Not just any door, but one particular door... the one you walk through that means you're home.

Last night, I had a great time with my book club.  We're a rowdy group, made up mostly of recent transplants... and me - the local.  We laugh so much that I don't need an ab workout for days (not that I participate in that sort of thing anyway).  And we drink copious amounts of wine.  And we share strange secrets and motherly struggles and marital frustrations.

We eat more than we should... and there is always dessert (last night - a chocolate fountain with Pringles, Twinkies, strawberries and NutterButters - - YUM).

And we end up staying out later than we ever would with our husbands.

So it was at 11:15 that I found myself walking through my kitchen door - to a not-so-clean kitchen.  But it was home, and it felt good.

Which got me to thinking about all the good "home comings" I remember - either from those long trips that you can't wait for and then can't wait to end, or just from a regular day.  When I was in high school, I came home one blustery fall day after cheerleading practice in the rain to find my mother at the stove cooking biscuits and gravy.  And, for some reason, that simple day is one of my favorite "home comings."  I think about it all the time.

This is what I want for my kids.  I want momentous home comings to be great memories, but I also want simple, regular days to be good home comings.  I want that kitchen door to mean something wonderful to them - something they look forward to seeing - whether they realize it or not.

So there - today, I have found the beauty in a boot-kicked, much-in-need-of-a-good-scrub (and some paint) door.

It's the simple things...

Monday, October 25, 2010

Wigging Out

Ok, I know it's been awhile.  Life gets busy... and I spend all day working on a computer...  sometimes I just want to walk away from it.

But I'm feeling computer-refreshed today.  Perhaps not so tied to it.

Anyway, this picture happened just about a month ago when we took out our Halloween decorations.  The girls had a blast swapping wigs and personalities to match (note Ella's 'tude).  They even went to a neighbor pretending to be new to the neighborhood.

It was extreme silliness.  I can't remember the last time I was extremely silly.  Heck, I can't even remember the last time I was remotely silly...

Isn't that the great part of having kids?  They keep silliness in your life.  Because while I may not have been getting silly lately, my kids sure have been.  And I get to experience silliness-by-association.

And here, they got even sillier.
Now I must go find something silly to do...  and so should you.  Maybe it will keep me young...