Sunday, June 24, 2012

sweet stranger

today has been one of those days. the kind of day where i flipped off the flashing speed limit sign that alerted me to my 4 mile over the speed limit infraction.  dont judge.

this juvenile middle finger outburst was precipitated by a crazy morning of a crying baby serenade while trying to get the little people out the door. on the upside, i now have a few additions to my blog series, 'sidwbf' otherwise known as the 'shit i do while breast feeding'. trust me, i plan on nominating myself for some kind of shiny medal that has been wrapped around a shiny bottle of cabernet for the things i find myself doing all while keeping ace quiet, happy and fed. today, i put socks, shoes and a coat on jw while nursing and fixed gks hair. it wasnt pretty, it wasnt graceful, but it was all done in peace and blessed quiet.

i proceeded to spill my morning cup of joy all over myself rushing to the car and managed to put on my makeup in its entirety before realizing i had forgotten THE holy grail of makeup until i was done...under eye concealer...otherwise known as magic make up crack for sleep deprived eyes. if i was on a deserted island and could only have three things, im only sure one of them would be concealer, less i get rescued without it.  anyway, it was the kind of morning i wished i could do over. in slow motion and silence. once the big little people were at school, the screaming one and i headed to target. it was on our way, with coffee still pooling in my lap and baby still serenading me from the back seat that the flashing rules police got the bird.

at target i unloaded all 300 square feet and 40 lbs of gear that new moms travel with into the cart and realized the future opera singer was asleep.  thank you, Jesus.  i began to imagine how blissful and relaxing it would be to peruse aisle after aisle of crap i didnt need in sweet holy silence.

while momentarily lost in brief happy thoughts, i failed to notice the sweet sweet 85 year old lady checking out my sleeping baby, who was completely covered, in his carseat. she looked at me and saw a relaxed and happy mama, a far cry from the crazy foul gesturing mess from a moment ago and simply asked to see him. i hesitated, wondering if it was worth the risk of him waking up and i briefly considered lying and saying there wasnt any baby in the car seat, but alas i caved and lifted the flap letting all the glorious fluorescent lights of the store cover him. she smiled the kindest smile and whispered to enjoy every minute before walking slowly away with short shuffling steps.

enjoy every minute?? where was she an hour ago when i was a lactating, dark eyed, ear drums bursting mess?  i stood there for a moment and looked over at ace who was now wide awake. there was my sweet, fat, healthy baby with the bluest eyes squinting under the lights of the store and i realized in that instant, this kind woman, a total stranger reminded me to experience what i had allowed the hectic pace of my morning to rob me of. pure joy. pure gratitude. pure happiness. i have a baby. a sweet precious and healthy baby with fully developed lungs that allow him to scream healthy cries whenever he feels like it.

can i possibly enjoy every minute of every day?  nope.  i cant.  and there was the sarcastic sliver of me that wanted to chase her down when he started crying in aisle 9 just to see if she was enjoying 'every minute', but i didnt.  instead, i realized that while i dont have that drug or gene in me that allows me to exist in a permanent state of bliss, i can tread water between the waves of embracing the crazy and enduring the chaos with the constant undercurrent of love and gratitude.  that i can do.  thanks little lady.  thanks.

Thursday, June 21, 2012


the other day i was discussing with the peach a variety of topics ranging from the likelihood of rapunzel being non fiction, to the tooth fairy getting lost on her way to our house to the idea that nobody actually owes her anything. she looked at me like i was all crazy and what not, but i continued to explain the idea that the sooner she doesnt expect things to be given to her, the faster she will be truly appreciative and content with what she already has. i told her how thankful i was to be able to provide her with all of her needs and some of her blesses me to bless her, but when we start to expect everything we want in life and we become fixated on what others are receiving, it shifts our focus from being grateful for what we do have and consumed with what we dont have.

this is not rocket science, its an incredibly basic life principle and yet i am freakishly (new fave word) astonished/shocked/disgusted at how some adults have completely missed this concept. its as if the grateful and content ship has sailed in and out of their lives a thousand times and they repeatedly chose to not get on board, but instead chose to set sail in the opportunistic/entitled ship. and as one who has watched a few people on that second vessel, the waters are choppy to say the least as they are battered by waves of disillusionment, bitterness and envy. they become opportunistic in what others can and should do for them and grow fixated on what hasnt been done. sounds like fun, doesnt it?

but this happens. all. the. time. to people who have SO much. tons, really, but regardless of how much they have, they are constantly focused on wanting more or wanting what someone else has been given. how can anyone truly be happy for more than a minute at at time if they operate from a place of opportunistic entitlement?

they cant.  

they exist with anger and resentment hovering just below the surface of themselves because they think they are owed more than what they have.  more attention.  more money.  more stuff.  more chances.

the truth is, we have been given so much we arent deserving of, a place in the kingdom, a life eternal, grace to cover our multitude of sins and the lavish love of our Father.  how can we accept all of these and still whine and complain about what He hasnt given us.  ugh.  its nauseating to listen to, witness and hear and yet, i have been guilty. guilty. guilty.

and i dont want to repeat myself a thousand different ways (which i tend to do when i find my soapbox)   but i cant help myself.  really, i cant.  because i feel this giant responsibility to help my people crack this code before adulthood.  i mean, nobody enjoys being around kids that are entitled, but adults...thats even more annoying and sad.

so, i will try and fix my eyes on the tremendous gifts that have been given to me on the cross and do my  best to pass the idea of contentment and gratitude onto these little people.  because regardless of the barrage of constant bs that is being sold to them from every angle today, as sons and daughters of our King, they have already been given way way way more than enough.  

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

week. end.

yes, the weekend eventually had to end and since i desperately missed my better half and little people i was actually very ready to head back to the mothership, but man was it fun.  three days of laughing so hard my weak sauce abs ached as though they'd actually had a work out and enough gin and tonic to keep the days blurry and blissful.

better half did an absolutely stellar job of caring for our brood and giving me a quick vacay to celebrate one of my nearest and dearest.  the kids had an altogether spectacular time with their all star daddy and i added to the incredibly long list of why i adore him so.  there is no way i could step into his office and not make a colossal mess of things while he was away and while i get the difference in our roles, after all he is a parent and i am not in the military, i was wowed by him (this seems to happen a lot) at the ease with which he seamlessly took over the full time parent role.

a long weekend in tucson arizona is just what i needed to reaffirm my love of time with the girls, pools and skydiving as well as confirm my aversion to extreme heat.  even a dry heat...which i was reminded of constantly while visiting the oven desert known as tucson.  the mountains are stunning and the ac is intense, but i think a winter visit would probably make breathing easier.  i waffled between feeling like i was laying in an oven and standing in front of a blow dryer on high heat and i found it highly amusing to hear locals remind me that it was simply a 'dry' heat and i had the unfortunate task of enduring humidity (gasp!) in omaha.  i dont prefer either and really dont enjoy a spitting contest of which is worse, baking in an oven or shouldering the immense weight of humidity...i just know im a spring/fall/winter kind of girl.

we ate enough fondue to tip the scales and had icy cold cocktails with shmancy made up names that i would never make like white peach hibiscus margaritas...hibiscus?  who knew how delish it could make a margarita.  we went to a sky diving tunnel where we flipped, flopped and flew around like socks in a spin cycle and laughed. so. much.  we celebrated a remarkable friend in remarkable fashion while soaking up a gor.geous resort, retinae burning sun and some much needed much loved girl time.

me thinks we should find reasons to do this more often...only next time with all of our better halves in tow....

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

over. the. top.

i am in the midst of recovering from a fantabulous surprise birthday weekend planned by my uber amazing better half.  a weekend i am so completely undeserving of and grateful for that highlighted how incredible he is and how ridiculous i look and sound on video.  seriously, y' was UGLY.

picture a super screechy high pitched monkey repeating the same redundant question over and over and over...i screeched, 'are you serious?' no less than 15 times while answering my front door over and over and over as dear friends arrived from across the country to surprise crazy, unprepared (and by unprepared, i mean unshowered), one year older me.

once i got over the shock and awe and my weird high pitched voice went back to normal (margaritas really do have healing powers) i was able to relax and soak up two days of awesomeness planned by mr. awesome himself.  at the end of the two days i was left feeling like id been rolled over by a giant love truck, with blessings toppling out the top and hitting me upside the head as it went by.  yep.  thats pretty much how it felt.

the truth is, i have the most amazing people in my life.  i have parents that are my heroes and best friends.  i have family that bring complete joy to my days, children that make motherhood the greatest love of my life, friends near and far that 'get' me and love me in spite of myself and then, as if all of these weren't enough, i get HIM.  this incredibly great guy who doesnt age (for real) who fills up my world with love.

i could not have imagined the weight of His gift to me 12 years ago when He gave me you.  i could not have seen what the future would hold for us nor the ebbs and flows that life had in store.  i simply could not see a future without you in it.  and what i want you to know is i am so profoundly grateful that God, in His infinite wisdom and unmatched generosity answered prayers i had yet to pray when He made you the one id do life with.  thank you.  thank you for making me the luckiest woman in the world and bringing buckets of love and balance and kindness to my days.  you are over the top ahhmazing and i am over the top amazed.

Monday, March 05, 2012

s.i.d.w.b.f. #1

i wish there was some uber catchy acronym for the shit i do while breast feeding. being a military wife has me completely conditioned to the need for needless acronyms. i cant help it, as much as i want to laugh at the absolute absurdity of some of the acronyms i hear on a daily basis, i have a touch of acronym envy, otherwise known as a.e. at the fact i cant come up with a clever one for the shit i do while breast feeding. one of my fave nonsensical military acronyms is tdy. it means temporary duty. im not sure why they add the 'y', but ive always thought of it as meaning 'yobyyoself' awhile. either way, i do loads of shit while nursing ace and while i would love to say 'shit' less, it is altogether fitting for this first installment of the s.i.d.w.b.f.

i was chatting with another newcomer to the 'club of three' the other day and we established we are in the midst of challenging moments more so than challenging days. the craziness comes in waves with massive undercurrents that leave me feeling like im gasping for air and being drug through razor sharp sand all the while hearing a constant litany of requests/demands by small people with big voices who incidentally have very little understanding of patience. in their defense, some of their needs are urgent and making them wait, even while im meeting the urgent needs of another, could have dire consequences for me. and really, i dont need anymore of those in my day.

the other day, after dropping gk off at her work release program (aka kindergarten), jw and i were serenaded all the way home by one screaming, hungry baby ace. i really think he is the loudest of all three of our people which is rather impressive if youve ever heard jack, the 3 year old with the voice of a 4o year old trucker, chatting up a room. lets just say his voice carries. anyway, we flew into the garage and ran out of the car like it was on fire in a rush to get inside and stop the screaming baby. as soon as we were inside, i started feeding ace and enjoying the quiet. 42 seconds later j informed me he needed to poop. great. i couldnt quit feeding ace this early into his breakfast or he and i would have both had a morning milk bath (tmi??) so i just walked with the baby and used my one free arm to hoist 38 lbs of j onto the potty all the while wondering where in the house he and his sister had left the stool that would have made this little joyful job unnecessary.

with j where he needed to be, i went back to the couch to continue feeding the baby who was somehow unfazed and oblivious to the constant movement. i swear it wasnt even 30 seconds later when j yelled he needed his bottom wiped. really. this is a task he usually handles on his own, but this morning, because the stars had all lined up just perfectly, there was apparently loads of shit everywhere and he really really really needed me. where is the awesome button? the one i get to press every time something awesome happens and at the end of the day it tallies the awesomeness and pours my glass of wine accordingly?

so, once again i trekked into the bathroom which now smelled comparable to a carnival porta potty (his voice isnt the only resemblance he has to a 40 year old trucker) and began the joyful job of wiping his rear while STILL breast feeding the baby. this is where i will spare you the majority of details except to let you know j wasnt exaggerating. he really did need me and i felt like i deserved a standing ovation, medal and shower when i emerged from the bathroom.

i didnt get any of those things, but i did get a cup of coffee and the satisfaction of knowing im capable of doing more than i originally thought to balance this blessed life with three. and at the end of the day, regardless of the 'awesome' moments tally, i would seriously not t.t.l.f.a. or trade this life for anything.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


you know its bad when you go to check your blog and as you type the address into your browser, your computer doesn't even remember it. its simply been that long. and while the lapse in posts has been great, its not for a lack of countless thoughts, rants and otherwise meaningless inner dialogues ive had over the past several months. the truth is ive had a baby which is awe-some to the hundredth power, but with that awesomeness comes the greatest little joy giver and cutest little time stealer. ever. i am amazed at how quickly a free hour evaporates into a free minute and the list of crap that doesnt get done multiplies exponentially. im also marveling, sometimes in horror, at the amount of crap i do while breast feeding, but thats an entirely different post. such is the blessed season.

so what i really want to know is in the midst of your crazy, busy, amazingly blessed life, what outrages you? and even more importantly, what are you doing about it?

you see, ive had a zillion different parts of my days i feel like sharing. seriously. a zillion. but, then the next day happens, sleep deprivation takes over and i move on. but the one question that has been nagging at my inner dialogue and robbing me of comfort at my core is this one.

i know we live in a world where we are saturated with shocking stories and tragedies. where it is easy to grow desensitized and weary at its vastness, but i cant shake the feeling that we have been given this restlessness for a reason.

there are men without conscience who are buying and selling and robbing young girls and boys of their childhood and adulthood. there are children living in paralyzing fear across the world and across the street. boys and girls dying to be thin. or loved. or straight. the forgotten elderly, the neglected widows and orphans, the hungry child who carries hunger pains and hopes every minute of the day, longing and waiting for his stomach and soul to be filled. those courageously living under the immeasurable weight of oppression and depression, longing for someone. anyone. to simply share their burden and lighten their load. to notice.

the truth is, there isnt a shortage of completely outrageous and heartbreaking realities around us. and i dont pretend to know what outrages you, what causes your soul restlessness and prompts your heart to move, but i do know what outrages me and the truth is i am challenged to do more.

we have been called as a people to serve the broken, hurting and lonely. to take the blessings we have been sleeping in and under and living in and bless others. to stop hoarding our time and our money like its ours to keep and start throwing it at those who need it most in the name of the One who gave it to us in the first place. packaged nicely and neatly and given to us in a shower of health, finances, time and gifts.

we have been given so freakishly much and to keep it all to ourselves, only sharing with those we know and love seems crazy to me. and comfortable and easy and completely understandable. i am so shamefully guilty of this, of only giving when its convenient and easy. of resisting the stretch of my own finances and choosing to stay comfortable while others break and suffer under the weight of my selfishness. i think about how desperately i want to raise children who know His goodness and faithfulness, who live a life dependent on Him and in service to Him and yet, every time i choose to give 'comfortably', i rob them of the chance to see what living and giving sacrificially really looks like. how can i hope to raise selfless, compassionate, empathetic and generous kids if they never see us stretching ourselves and our finances, trusting in Him while we give generously in His name?

i am so thankful for a God who continues to beckon me to live boldly and generously to those He has placed on my heart, forgiving my past and giving me purpose in spite of my selfishness and human greed. i want to move toward living a life that outrageously changes the stories and tragedies of what outrages me. i want to answer the restlessness in my spirit with service, giving from what i have been so abundantly given.

this is a tall order, one i am sure to fail at time and time again, but to not aim for this, to not answer this clear call to my soul would be to deny id heard the call in the first place and that, im afraid, would be an outrage to the One who stirred my heart in the first place.

so, what outrages you? and more importantly, what are you doing about it?