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An honest and hilarious look at everyday events in a deliberate attempt to make life absolutely delicious.

When you are not happy with what is developing… change your focus!

The Excitement and Fear of NEWNESS

Change brings about excitement and fear..The excitement and fear of newness… is that really a word?  Oh well, you know what I mean….change.  A new puppy, a new job, a new car, a new home, a new outfit, a new friend.  There is always excitement and a little bit of fear of what the newness will offer.

It’s been so long for newness in my life, probably my newest moment was my Yukon last August 2014…. but that was after driving the sweet Great White Whale for 8 years and over 157,000 miles.  She had seen more states in the continental US than most US citizens.  She had power doors that squeaked (too much beach??), leather seats that were cracking from my butt rubbing on them for so many years, carpet that had seen years of dirty-goldfish-loving toddlers and young kids.  But darnit-all she still looked good from the outside – one of my life secrets, buy a white vehicle…. they never get dated.  GWsquared is what we called her and my middle child cried when we traded her in on our GMC Yukon XL.  UM – I didn’t cry….. I was totally ok with it.  Really…. I was good…. and totally ready for the newness.  (fear came with picking up car payments again…. Yes, I admit it…. we did not buy the car outright, with cash, like all the other bloggers in the Blog Universe encourage you to do.)

Sometimes I think as we age newness comes more and more sporadically.  You get married…no more newness.  You buy a great house…. newness gone.  That sweet puppy that you got when you really wanted another baby…. now a midlife aged dog.  (that’s not the whole truth Mr. Big was a “gift” from our neighbor, who had a beautiful Westie that got knocked up by their “new” little Silkie and voila…. puppies.  Mr. Doug called me over to the fence, put a perfect tiny black puppy in my hands and said, in his charming southern twang….. “Kids need a dog!”  Kids my toosh….. That dog was mine from that moment on and when I took him over to “convince” my husband… one look and he knew all he could say was “OK”.  Mr. Big did, however, turn out to be our fourth child…. just ask my baby girl, she’ll tell you just like she told her Kindergarten Teacher a few years ago…. that I love Mr. Big more than her.)  But the newness does slow down a little bit.  And that’s ok…. I’m not complaining.

But when newness comes…. it’s exciting and a little bit scary.  Am I prepared?  Will it work out?  Do I have what it takes?  How is this going to go together?  Did I make the right choice?  and the questions go on and on and on.

My daddy once told me some advice that I refer to often in my life –

Make the best decision based on the information you have at that time and then never look back.  Don’t do the what-if’s!  They will steal joy from your life.

So when the newness comes my way…. I make the best decisions I can based on the information that I have at that given moment and then I move forward and try very, VERY, VERY HARD, not to look over my shoulder.  No one, no glance and no what-if’s will take away my life’s joy.

I am often gratefully reminded to “trust the timing of your life.”  Those words belong to my BFF… and there in lies the key to life.  The newness, the lack of it and the excitement and fear that its existence or null of existence brings, is made beautiful when you have people to share it with…. Long time friends, family, new friends or even unlikely characters….. but it is the sharing of our lives with the spirit of others…. with people.   Life is not a spectator sport….. it is full contact and the more contact you have with people the more successfully you can handle the excitement, the fear, the good and the bad.  Now get out there and enjoy the newness that life has to offer!!

 

 

So… you want to date my kid?

So…. you want to date my kid?

Ugh – It’s here and my kid has a sweet little girlfriend but I’ll be honest… the conversation about how this was going to happen was a fun one.  I have rules… I should say we have rules.  We have rules in this house and dating was not going to be any different.  We sat him down… our oldest… and his sweet daddy started with the basics.  Respect and kindness and…. in true me fashion… I jumped right in and interrupted, all loud and proud on my rules.  My rules that really is only one rule…..

#1 – If you choose to date my child, or even be a friend of my kid… you become part of my world.  And if you become part of my world… I will do the following:

  • Expect you to greet me when you see me
  • Ask you questions about your lifeRules to dating my child.
  • Chat with you if you call my home
  • Stalk you on social media (and I am good at it)
  • Meet your parents
  • Drill you about your grades
  • Show disappointment if your grades are not were they should be
  • Offer help if you need it
  • Quiz you about your plans for after high school
  • Hug you
  • Feed you
  • Drive you places
  • Call you out if I think you are acting like an ass
  • Make certain you have good manners
  • Take you places that might expand your view of the world
  • Discuss any topic with you… if appropriate (or encourage you to discuss it with your parents)
  • Track you down if I think you are lying to me
  • Assume if you’re at my home, you will put your dirty dishes in the dish washer
  • Retain the right to add to this list any time I choose

Why?  Because I believe with my whole heart that the children of our world need many adults in their lives.  Adults who care and love them.  Adults who have expectations for not only their personal children but expectations for all children.  I believe that kids live up to said expectations.  I also believe that I don’t want to choose my children’s friends or sweethearts.  I believe they should choose them… but I will be part of that person’s life.  I will become a mentor, a coach, a friend, a second mom or a pain in their butt.

Because if you are going to spend time with my child.  I want to be assured that you have someone who has high expectations for you and if I am the only one to do that… so be it.  However, if I am the twentieth person to do that…. even better.

I believe in kids…. their excitement for life, their lack of fear and their undefined potential.

So…. you want to date my kid?  Allow me to introduce myself…..

Perfectionists aren’t cut out for this job…

I learned a huge lesson today… even when I am on game and taking extra steps to ensure success… things still go wrong.

My brother was laughing at me today and called me a perfectionist and yes… I suppose I am a bit of a procrastinating perfectionist.  I hate to be wrong.  I hate to not be in the know.  I hate for things to not go as I planned.

But mostly…. I HATE TO BE WRONG.  Perfectionist aren't cut out for this job.

Do you know how I feel?  I work hard to make certain all is right…. all is covered…. all is under control.  And then BAMO…. the project or scenario or situation screws itself up and I’m the one that looks like I was wrong.  BUMP THAT.  I was not wrong.

And to prove it… I dug through the garbage.  YEP…. today I dug through the smelly garbage…. to prove…. that I…… was not wrong.

Now in my defense… my brother was making fun of me.  (and yes we are grown adults)  and I did need to prove to HIM that I was right…. but as I stood there with my hands down in the garbage looking for the one small piece of paper that would prove my OVERPOWERING RIGHTNESS…. and as the guys that I was working with sang, “LET IT GO”…. and as I stuck my finger straight into a container of used cream cheese…. my inside voice started to laugh.

My inside head voice… you know the one…. it started to giggled and then, it too, broke out in the overused song, “LET IT GO” in harmony with the guys.  What was left to do…. I smiled. Pulled my garbage hands from the trash can.  Looked at those grown men, who were enjoying my perfectionist behavior that had just pushed me into the trash and I started to laugh.

There is no such thing as perfect.  Not at work, not at home and not in our lives.  Perfection is unattainable and being right is not all it’s cracked up to be.  So I did what an old friend taught me many years ago…..

I let being right roll off my shoulder, down my arm and when it reached my hand I flicked it off.  I let it go…. the bonus was the hand I used to flick it was covered in cream cheese.

Let it go…. or you might just find yourself in the trash….. literally!

 

(DISCLAIMER…. for as much as I like to be right and on top of things…. There is another side of me that just doesn’t give a damn.  It’s interesting to watch the two of them fight it out… hence, the procrastinating perfectionist.  I mean…. look at this blog for example.  I started by reading everything I could and trying to be perfect and then just like with the hunting in the trash episode…. I just decided to “Let IT GO!”  Have some fun and enjoy not being perfect or right all the time.  Maybe?  Maybe not…)

Theme Song…

I’m pretty sure that “Eye of the Tiger” is my theme song for 2016 and fitting…. it is.

Eye of the Tiger Theme Song 2016

It is no secret that 2015 was a challenge. That I ate humble pie and left things that had defined my career for many years.  It is no secret that I had to stop and breathe.  It is no secret that from May on…. I had to hunker down and figure out what I want to do with my life.  And it is no secret that I have an amazing family and an amazing group of friends who have supported me and listened to me and allowed me to Breathe.

But this song keeps showing up….

Did my time, took my chances
Went the distance
Now I’m back on my feet

It rings as my anthem and heaven knows I need one.  I always think back to Ally McBeal…. and now I have my theme song.

So many times, it happens too fast
You trade your passion for glory

When you lose sight of your passion and you do your work for glory… you are missing the point.  The point of work, the point of change and the point of life.  I’ve been there… made good money and lost my passion.  Life without passion sucks, take it from me…. I’ve been there.

So thank you radio magic…. thank you for playing Eye of the Tiger by Survivor three times in the last three days, that are the first three days of 2016.  I think I’m finally ready…. ready to stand strong for my passion.  Risin’ up to the challenge!

 

Let’s do this…. face that challenge and make IT happen!  I know change is scary but life without passion is even scarier.  What challenge are you going to face this year?  YOU CAN DO IT!

 

“French Fry Day” happens on Thursdays.

French Fry Day happens on ThursdayI’m a creature of habit.  When I was a child we had pizza on Friday nights…. every Friday night.  And Sunday brunch was at Morrison’s Cafeteria…. every Sunday.  Habits make me successful and when I get a really good one it stays for years.

As a matter of fact, my best friend from high school is still one of my best friends because years ago she and her husband would meet us for pizza on Friday nights (see a pattern here??)  That went on for years until we had too many children cumulatively to make it work at the little pizza joint that we loved.  :)

But it was the habit that Friday nights were meant to have dinner with my high school BFF.

I had a habit for several years to call my mom every work day at 8:30 as I was headed into the office.  She knew the call was coming and I knew I had about 30 minutes to touch base with her.

Habits work…. and good habits are good for us especially in the arena of building relationships.

When I look at my day-to-day life with my kids…I smile at the traditions and habits that we have.

Obviously, Friday night is PIZZA night, but there are others that my kids just know to be constants in their lives.

The newest one is French Fry Day…. we do it every Thursday – which makes my baby girl and I giggle every time we say it.

It’s just that, Birdie (my daughter) and I go get an order of fries, right after I pick her up from school and share them.  We eat one fry at a time and talk about how things are going with her.  Pretty precious time if I do say so myself.  Such a simple thing but makes a big difference in our relationship.

Habits and traditions create strong families and relationships.  With the holidays sneaking up on us… what traditions and habits do you share with those people you love the most?  I’ll share some Christmas ones coming up soon.

Getting Started – A personal look at growth.

Will you just help me get started?

Do you ever think to yourself… If someone could just get me started.

Like if my sister would come over and just clean my bathrooms I could get busy and get the rest of this house into shape.

Or, I would love to become a runner if someone would just get me started…. but the only reason I have ever done any running in my life was because an over opinionated miniature pincher was chasing me and I was terrified that I would be eaten alive by the 6 pound monster.

Or you wanted to knit everyone in your family a beautiful scarf for Christmas, even though they would only be able to wear them one week out of the year because we live in Florida. But if someone would just get me started I could accomplish those beautiful handmade gifts and so many of my other goals.

It’s that motion law… you know the one.

A body in motion stays in motion, A body at rest stays at rest.

So if someone would just get me started science dictates that I would continue.

I could become the world’s greatest designer, photographer or chief… if someone would just get me started. You know the latter is not going to happen… I once substituted vinegar with balsamic vinegar. Evidently they are very different flavors… who knows that?! They both contain the name vinegar. Long story short, one child lied that the food was good (favorite child) while the other spit it out and vigorously wiped his tongue to remove the taste of my masterpiece from his memory forever (not the favorite child).

I sometimes look at a white screen and think, if someone could just help get me started. Push me! Put this body in motion and it will stay in motion. PUSH ME!

But if you push… then very often you will learn the second meaning of getting me and every other women on earth started.

It will go from “Will you just help me get started?” to “DON’T get me started.”

Ever realized that your wants and needs are so contradictory. My thoughts within one day can range from one end of the spectrum to the other.

  • I love my work… I can’t wait to become the employee of the month at Target.
  • I want it ALL… I want just what I need.
  • I dream of making a dent in the world… I just want to live a simple life.

Contradictions! Body in Motion vs. Body at rest.

I think the trick is to realize what you absolutely don’t want… as we grow, we learn those things.  Know what you don't want.

  • I don’t want to have Sunday night anxiety.
  • I don’t want to be embarrassed when a neighbor stops by my house because my house is a disaster.
  • I don’t want my life to fly by me and I miss it.
  • I don’t want to forget who I am.
  • I don’t want to always be the one talking, I want to learn to listen.
  • I don’t want to forget that I am beautiful and I don’t want to stop making an effort…. for me!
  • I don’t want to go to sleep at night feeling unloved because I was not brave enough to voice my needs.
  • I don’t want to tell people off (even though I’m pretty good at it) just because I can.
  • I don’t want to settle for something that is less than what I deserve.
  • I don’t want my children to grow up and not have manners, social skills and charm.
  • I don’t want my life to not touch the lives of those I meet daily, touch the lives of those I call friends, and touch the lives of those I love.

Once we know what we don’t want, we can begin to deeply understand what we do want.  Who we want to be, how we want to love, why our wants and needs sometimes flip flop.

Understanding and loving ourselves becomes easier.  The song of our spirit becomes louder… the trueness of who we were meant to be becomes clearer.  (check out these tips to getting started from the artofliving.org to quieting yourself through meditation.)

There is no script for this life that you are living… No one can get you started…. ONLY YOU!  Only you can do that.

There is no timeline for this life the you are living… you can start a new career, have a baby when your youngest is nine (BTW – I’m not pregnant), start anew at 50.

There are no boxes that you must fit into for this life that you are living… you are free!  You are free to be you.  FREE TO BE YOU!

You are free to be a Body in Motion…

You are free to be a Body at Rest…

You are free to be a contradiction…

You are free to be the YOU, you were meant to be.

So what’s stopping you?  What’s keeping you from JUST GETTING STARTED?