Saturday, October 31, 2009

She's My Hero

I had to take a minute to post over the weekend (gasp!) because my precious daughter did something that completely inspired me today.

Today #2 had the opportunity to score her fifth goal of this morning's girls U10 soccer game after a breakaway down the field (which by the way she gets her amazing athletic ability from her mother. Or, not). She had a clear open shot and drew her foot back to boot it in when out of the corner of her eye she saw another teammate. In a split second decision she passed the ball to her teammate and yelled for her to take the shot. It went in and I just stood there watching this whole scene play out in front of me like some Disney movie (I expected Air Bud to come flying down the hill). Afterwards, I asked her why she didn't take that last shot and she explained to me very matter-of-fact:

"It was our last game of the season and "Susie" didn't get to score any goals so I wanted her to finish the season and be able to say she got a goal".

I'm just glad she was riding behind me so she couldn't see the tears well up in my eyes. Many parents would be proud to have an athletic child who scored four goals. However, I was proud beyond words to have a child who demonstrated the love and compassion of Christ on a soccer field this morning.

And, her madd soccer skillzz are pretty sa-weet, too!!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

They Like Me. They Really Really Like Me

Well, since I am suffering from low self-esteem right now I am going to share some good news and maybe that will make me feel better (haha, I'm half kidding). But anyway, I submitted a more polished version of this blog post to Central Penn Parent Magazine and I received an email earlier this week that they would love (and yes, she said "love") to publish it with a family picture in their December edition. I cannot tell you how it makes my little heart go pitter-pat to see something that I have written being published. On paper.

Because when I was younger I basically spent most of my days:

1. Reading
2. Writing
3. Talking

And, now that I am grown up I still spend a good bit of time on those things. Now, don't get me wrong...I'm not quitting my day job to apply to be a journalist for National Geographic or anything; however, I may prayerfully consider from time to time sharing the deep and academically stimulating topics that I frequently discuss on this know like soccer, motherhood angst and cleaning up dog vomit. What magazine editor could pass on those offerings?

So, pick up the December issue at a doctor's office or hair salon near you (but, remember to sanitize from the elbows down after touching it since you have no idea who touched it before you) and check it out...and, remember you heard it here first!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Then Vs. Now

Do you ever flashback and remember life before you were responsible for anyone besides yourself? It seems so long ago and while I wouldn't trade being a mommy for anything I never pictured myself doing any of these things.....

* Checking homework while brushing my teeth or going to the bathroom. All while trying to make phone calls to get volunteers for a PTO event. Hold on, Mrs. Jones, I have to spit/flush.

* Allowing my children to vomit in my hands so it does not get all over the car seats which are a major pain to take apart and clean.

* Sleeping perched on 2 inches of mattress while my child lays spread eagle in the middle of MY bed with all of of MY covers.

* Singing the Star Spangled Banner at a grasshopper's funeral.

* Finally getting the kids to bed and The Husband gives me "The Look"; however, the only "look" I can manage to give back to him is a Deer-in-the-Headlights Look because I have to go bake and decorate 24 cupcakes to take into school the next morning.

* Getting out of the house to spend a few hours at a luxury spa only to be consumed with thoughts of...what will the kids eat? Will they drink enough water? Will The Husband make sure they don't watch too much TV? I should stop and buy milk on my way home. I wonder what time #1's ortho appointment is on Friday.....etc..... so much for "relaxing".

However, the last and best thing I never considered before having kids is how much they have captured my heart! They really are a blessing from the Lord and I am so grateful to be called Mommy.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

I Think Noah was Playing Goalie

I know I can get carried away with my stories, but I'm not joking when I say I experienced watching my first soccer game in the middle of a CATEGORY. SEVENTY-SEVEN. HURRICANE.


It had been cloudy all morning as we prepared to leave for #3's soccer game. By the time we got in the car for the 35-minute drive, I was pretty sure that we might get a little drizzle so I packed #2 and #3 some extra clothes and an umbrella. We arrived at the field and as the girls warmed up I felt a raindrop or two, but when the whistle blew to start the game it was like a scene from some slapstick cheesy comedy where the sky lets loose and a downpour drenches us all. I huddled under my umbrella (#2 had volunteered to be line judge and since she was on codeine for her teeth I'm not sure if she even noticed it was raining). Then, these gusts of wind started to flip up my umbrella. I was already soaked because no umbrella could have kept anyone dry in a rainstorm like this one. Then, the cheap Boscov's umbrella broke. I looked at the mom sitting next to me and we just laughed. I guess it could've been worse....I could've been #3's teammate who made a run towards the goal only to be tripped and belly flop into a 3-inch deep mud puddle.

They called the game 15 minutes early because no one could actually kick the ball anymore unless they lobbed it up in the no longer rolled. #3 decided it looked like fun to slide across the muddy field on her belly before we left. I now have her uniform in the washing machine on the 13-hour stain cycle to try and get all the mud out of what used to be white socks.

I'm going to be thrilled when our indoor soccer season starts.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I'm Not Signing Up for a Triathalon or Anything.....

....but tonight during soccer practice I "ran" for the first time since the May Day Dash and it felt pretty good. According to #3 though she said I didn't really "run", I "jogged" and that is not running. I wonder what she would say if she had seen me crawling, I mean walking, on the back half of the trail.

I figured since it had been ....ah-hem....279 days since Big Mama got on the Wii Fit it may be time for a little exercise to prepare for our PX90 that still has not arrived on our doorstop to date. I'm not sure a person of my....ah-hem.....stature could survive going from zero exercise to the PX90 workout. So, a little walking, running and Wii Fit have become a part of my life again in very limited quantities!

The point of all this is that it has felt REALLY good to exercise again! Did I just type that? Seriously, I don't know how hard core I'm going to get with the PX90, but I feel like I'm more prepared for the challenge and it is going to feel good to just get my blood pumping on a daily basis. And, if I lose 25 pounds in the process that will be nice, too!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Don't Just Tell Me, Show Me

I was reading a book last night and because of the story line I ended up meditating on how precious and unpredictable life is. When I start to fret over the little unimportant things it really takes my focus off of Christ and Him at work in my life. At any time a phone call can change our lives and we need to know we have a God who we can trust, even in the storms.

I believe that life is so much more than just "surviving the day"; however, I can treat my days like that when I don't spend time seeking after God. Our days should be filled with compassion, courage and making the most of every opportunity to encourage people. This is something I have been struggling to communicate to one of our kids lately. To convince her that she needs to not just say she loves us, but demonstrate her love for us. I think we can all be guilty of that. Especially in a relationship with Jesus when we present our "wish lists" to Him day after day (we call it prayer) but we don't honor Him in our relationships or activities. It's our choice and God is not an arm twister. And, I told my sweet daughter that, too. Don't try to fake it and humor me...I want to see an honest attempt and prayerful pursuit of a deep love that can be demonstrated outwardly.

And, I'm pretty sure God wants that from me, His daughter, as well.....

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Parable of the Stink Bug

Ok, first of all....go ahead...ohhh and ahhh about my amazing new autumn template that is motivating me to put away the summer seashell decor and get out my lovely pumpkin candles and assorted knick knacks before it is time to pull out the Christmas decorations.

Now, it is time for the occasional deep thought that runs through my brain during my weekday commute in between the usual thoughts of "Should I stop and get a donut on my way home" or "Man, I should have peed before I left work". Yesterday, the thought was "AHHHHH! There is a stink bug on my passenger side window. Must. Get. It. Out.....". So, I rolled down my window but the little bugger held on for dear life as I zoomed down the highway. I expected him/her to fly off at any minute, maybe when a big truck went by it would scare it away. Nope. So, I grabbed my only weapon within reach. A headband and tried to swat at it. It held on. I then rolled up the window thinking perhaps if it straddled the window I would just squash it gently when it reached the top. Nope, it was still clearly on the inside of the window. The entire time I'm driving I'm worried about it flying up in my face and that thought would trigger a new plan...i.e. the hairband, window up, speeding up, slowing down, grabbing my coat from the back seat and flinging it violently as I drive down I83....that stink bug still held on.

Then, I stopped. I looked at it. I looked at the road. I still did not want it to fly in my face, but I no longer wanted to kill it. I actually admired its perseverance and endurance. It was a courageous little stink bug that moments ago I would have gladly flicked under the tire of a car driving next to me simply because it was insignificant and stinky if you mess with it. I felt like God spoke to me in that moment and said that I've done that to people, too. I may not have wanted a bus to run over (most of) them, but I've tried to "get rid" of them because they were annoying me. I didn't want them "in my face" or distracting me. So, in my own way I dismissed them without a thought of what they had to offer under their "stinky" exterior.

When I got home and was safely in the driveway I carefully flicked the little stink bug into the grass. As I did that, I prayed that I would show the same compassion and gentleness to ALL of God's creation, even when they act like little stinkers!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Attention Co-Workers.....

.....please keep all hands and feet inside your cubicle at all times. Melissa is starting another weight loss adventure and if she doesn't have a nervous breakdown and start trying to eat human appendages, she may just kick you hard because she's grumpy. Or, something like that.

Ok, seriously...I'm not going to go all cannibal or anything. But, after weeks of prodding, I caved in to The Husband's request to order PX90 or P90X or whatever it is called. He said he wants to transform his abs into a six-pack but I told him they look fine as a 2-liter, just like mine! He has been talk, talk, talking about how we NEED to get this (I didn't even know what it was until last night. I kept telling him I'm not taking any weird non-FDA approved diet drug).

Poor, sweet innocent boy. He has never really had to concern himself with the issue of weight loss, unlike my experienced self who has been dieting or thinking about dieting since I was about 8 years old when I looked in the mirror at dance class and decided my head was way too small for my body (don't worry my head has caught up now....kinda). Which is why when he declared we are going to do this insane workout (it is 13 DVDs targeted to confuse your muscles so you never plateau) I just chuckled under my breath. It is an hour or two EVERYday for 90 days along with an eating plan. I was like what? You mean I exercise for an hour and I don't get to eat what I want? Hmmmm, that sounds familiar.....I think the common phrase for that is called "boot camp". And, the timing of 90 days leading up to Christmas, I'm "lol"ing as I type......

So, yes, my faithful've walked this walk with me before with my Wii Fit and my Jillian Michaels (well, not really because I only did her dvd twice), and I think we also marched through a Biggest Loser competition with some friends in which I only won because I took laxatives the night before we weighed in.....but, I digress. I have lowered the bar of my expectations this time. My goal is to merely live through an hour of daily exercise and eating who-knows-what for 90 days. All I want is to have a pulse at the end of it and not to have devoured some unsuspecting co-worker in the process.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Just the Facts, Mam. Just the Facts.

Anyone out there know of a suburban, soccer mom reality show? I'd like to audition, please. Rather than bore you with the details of how I've only been home to sleep and do a few loads of laundry over the past 5 days (The Dog was looking at me last night like "Do I know you?"), suffice it to say between cheerleading, soccer, play practice and a film shoot this mama thinks Survivor is for sissies....eating tree bark in the jungle is a walk in the park compared to the usual day here!

For was a typical Morning O'Insanity at the oH mY wORD household. Lounging around in bed nursing my migraine with #3 until she cried out to remind me that the two girls I begin watching before school today were arriving any moment....I leapt from my bedroom to discover them at the front door (thankfully I was dressed but disheveled) to which I explained my house was a wreck because we were at a film shoot all weekend. Oh what a glamorous life I lead....not so much. After answering questions about the film and hopefully clarifying that we aren't secretly famous or anything, I sat all the girls in front of the TV like a good mom does so I could finish getting ready for know, the thing I do that I actually get PAID for...unlike my acting career. I discovered the children watching Sponge Bob whom I despise (which I could launch into a full dissertation of the evils of Sponge Bob, but I'll save that for another day) and as I was telling them to turn it off to load up in the van, #2 pulls out her form that was due last week to play the saxophone. Lessons start today and I never even signed the agreement to get the instrument!! And, of course, my sweet child can't play a more inexpensive instrument like say....the triangle, she has to go for the $39 a month instrument....but, I digress....the paperwork gets filled out quickly (I never did fill in the sales tax portion because I had no calculator and my brain was mush) and I realize I am not really "ready" for work so I decide to drop off the girls and come back home.

Upon pulling away from the parent drop off area I realize that #3 forgot her "pet" grasshoppers and she was doing a speech on them today. So, I race back home to grab the plastic container with Saran Wrap on top and realize perhaps I should have given them some fresh grass (not that I was actually home in the last 5 days to do that, but it was a nice thought). I then realized the first grasshopper, "Buddy" was very still and not hopping as grasshoppers should hop. In fact, he was dead. Now what?? I can't deliver a dead grasshopper to school....#3 would be in therapy for years. So, I carefully pull back part of the plastic wrap roof and the smell of grasshopper carnage assaults my nose (actually, it was more like the scent of dead, moldy grass). Afraid now that "Joseph" the other grasshopper will escape I search for a utensil to scoop out the corpse. I open my silverware drawer but can't bring myself to use any actual silverware on it. How can I possibly use a spoon to scoop out a dead grasshopper and then use that same spoon to eat a bowl of ice cream?? No, I need a plastic, disposable utensil but there is only a plastic knife and fork. A knife just seemed so a murder weapon so I carefully, removed Buddy with a fork. I wrapped his body in a burial shroud (paper towel) and threw a little fresh grass in for Joseph and zoomed back to school. On the way, my coffee mug tipped over on top of the box, but what grasshopper in captivity doesn't appreciate some good Costco Colombian coffee dripping through his air holes in the morning?

For my grand finale, when I got to work I dropped my cell phone in the toilet.

This is my true story. And, I'm sticking to it.