Thursday, April 21, 2011

Words

"I write about God because I love Him deeply. And yet because I love Him, I’m afraid to write about Him."

When I read that I stopped in my tracks.  Stopped breathing for a moment even.  Yes.  Those are the words I've been searching for. 

I do a lot of writing here about my children and my family and what I read, but I do most of my writing about God in my head and in the little black moleskin in the chair in the early morning in the living room. I've thought and thought about why those words don't flow freely.   From there to here.  And Shaun's words nailed it. 

I don't want to misrepresent Him.  I don't want your experience with me, past, present, or future to tint or shade the your vision of God.  My failings and woundings and sins are no reflection of who He is; and the part of me that thinks too much and too long and worries too much fears that if I write the wrong thing - or the right thing - that my voice will not represent Him well.  And yet, He uses us - me even? - to be hands and feet and smiles and shoulders to those around us. 

Yesterday a woman came into my office to have some papers notarized.  She was filing for divorce, taking the first step to getting out of an abusive marriage.  We went through the motions, reading, signing, explaining, signing, stamping, sealing.  When I handed her papers back to her, I said, "That's all you need, these are ready to filed", you would have thought I told her I was handing her a million dollars.  She wept and hugged me and said "Thank you, thank you!  Thank you Jesus." 

I'll probably never see her again, but God allowed me to be a small part in what I hope is a path to her freedom. It was a reminder that a small word, a small deed, a signature, a phone call, an email, can be one thread in the tapestry that God is weaving in another life.  And this day, this day of Last Suppers and feet washing brings to mind the One who came to serve and calls me to do the same.  Even if I'm afraid that I'll get it wrong.  

Monday, April 18, 2011

A Holy Week in Unholy times?

I read this article this morning and I was so surprisingly affected by his words.  The article intertwines history, human nature, and thoughts on how our Creator comes into all of it in a really beautiful way.  The issue of certainty and control play a big part in my life right now (perhaps as Mead posits, all of our lives?) and his words were a gentle and honest reminder of how often that biggest need from a human standpoint is truly unattainable. 

All too frequently life, work, family, and the world can seem to come at us too fast; it all seems like too much sometimes.  This gentle reminder helped put that sentiment into its proper perspective during Holy Week, "It’s the week that came at Jesus too fast: the triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Sunday ended days later in humiliation, torture and death."

It is a bit on the long side, but worth the extra couple of minutes it takes to read it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Serenity Parenting

I was thinking yesterday about what the goal of parenting is for me.  What is the end I have in my mind as I make the journey of parenting my girls?  Honestly, lots of words and ideas came to mind.  And when I then found this article yesterday, it was almost providential.  Okay, providential might be too strong of a sentiment, but it was timely.  As much as I think I can nod in agreement with what he says in the article, my tendency is definitely to err on the side of thinking my nurture has a lot to do with how my kids turn out.  So, all of that is to say, I think I agree, at least in theory and in part with what he puts forth, but why is so hard to take that knowledge from head to hands and feet?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Tomorrow


I promise I know that there is life outside of "Annie", but for one more day, I'll devote some time to my girls' love of all things Annie.  They were singing to the soundtrack yesterday, and Caroline's flair for the dramatic and Charlotte's emphatic "Momawah!" were too much for me.  So, I had to see if I could have them re-enact it in photo booth. Enjoy.

Monday, April 11, 2011

New at 10:00 . . .

video
I thought I'd get a bit more traction out of Caroline's talent show experience by posting this video clip from the news.  She makes an ever-so-brief appearance.

In other news, I read this post, and the beginning of it had me nodding in complete agreement over her description of a two-year old tantrum.  Caroline didn't really go through too much of the terrible twos - or maybe she did and I've blocked it out of my memory.  In any event, Charlotte got an early start on the terrible twos and had a few "moments" this weekend.  Her last fit was last night when she decided she did not want to hear anything I had to say and almost made herself sick by screaming and flailing and crying on her bedroom floor.  As soon as she was done, she got up, hugged me and said, "Let's read three books tonight."  Happen, happen?

Camille is a little under the weather right now and I had to bring her to the doctor on Sunday.  The only upside to her getting sick is that I get to see how much she's growing.  She weighted 17 lbs, 10 ozs. and was 27 1/4 inches long.  Big girl!

Friday, April 08, 2011

Kindergarten's Got Talent

Caroline's kindergarten talent show was yesterday afternoon. She danced and sang to "It's a Hard Knock Life" from Annie. This performance was all her own. She decided that she wanted to dance to an Annie song rather than do a ballet dance. Then after watching a few You Tube clips of stage productions of Annie (in addition to the movie which she's watched a few dozen times), she said she had her own dance in mind. She did great! I was really proud of her - and the rest of these five and six year olds - who got up on stage in front of a ton of parents and all of the rest of the kids in their school to perform.

Here's our little Annie:





Thursday, April 07, 2011

Confessions of a Mama

It felt so good to get everything out in the open last week, I thought I'd do it again. Thank you for indulging me.  And if anyone wants to join me in this, feel free to leave your own confessions - there's nothing like getting a little affirmation in your perceived failings .. . .

I have finally admitted to myself that all of the baby weight (and, yes, I do mean the weight I gained from all four of my pregnancies) isn't going to lose itself.  So, I committed to working out two times a week. Tracy Anderson and I started out the day together for the past two days, so who knows, I might get a wild idea to run at some point in the near future. 

Aaaaaand Parenthood strikes again.  Oh my goodness.  The emotions on Tuesday night's show!  It was too much for me.  Everyone made me cry this week:  Amber and Sarah, Julia and Sydney, Hattie, Adam and Crosby. I haven't watched any other TV this week, so no chance for anything to make me cry. 

I had to confront my tendency to hold onto the reins of control this week.  Although I truly hate when I have to face my shortcomings (and I know they are numerous), I know it's good for me and those I love - so I am examining myself, trying to keep that tendency to control in check and stifling the urge to say, "Just let me do it!" 

In light of the above, I've been thinking a lot about this post.  And this one. And this email.  Oh, and this post too.  I don't want to be so busy trying to arrange things, make things work, and yes, control things, that I miss the moment.  

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

A Girl for All Seasons

 Our first born is growing up so much by the day.  She is no longer has any bit of baby left in her, she's all little girl.  Caroline is a joy to be around, I know I'm biased as her mother, but I am in awe of her in so many ways.  She has a sharp mind, a great sense of humor, she's inquisitive, patient to almost no end with her sisters, and so much more.  Right now Caroline is getting ready for her kindergarten talent show at school and she takes ballet and is playing soccer.  She has a love for life and all that it has to offer.  Her smile and sweet hugs and kisses make my mornings.  And my evenings.

Because she and I are both the oldest in our families, I feel like I know a little about what makes her tick, what she needs to hear and receive from us as her parents, and how we can encourage her and what it takes to get her attention.  But even though there's a lot of me in her, she is definitely her own person.  She has such a love for singing and dancing and anything dramatic, I pray that we cultivate all that God has put in her so that she continues to become more of who He made her to be.

When I pray for wisdom and patience and guidance for raising my girls, I pray it with three little girls' faces in mind.  And here are a few of one of those faces doing two of the things she loves.











I love you so much Caroline Jean!  

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Two by two




For some reason, I didn't catch all three of the girls in one picture this weekend, but I did manage to get Caroline and Charlotte together and Camille and Charlotte together. That middle child somehow has a way of working her way into everything . . .

Monday, April 04, 2011

Sunday





We had a good and busy weekend! Caroline had a soccer game on Saturday morning and had a friend come over to play that afternoon. Sunday we went to church and let the little ones nap and then it was off to the grocery store for me! The girls spent a good bit of time outside today too, and this afternoon - as you can see - they made a make-shift baby pool out of the bin we keep the outside toys in.

This week is the kindergarten "talent show." And I'm using those quotation marks in their truest sense. I imagine that this might be more properly titled, "entertainment for the parents show." Caroline has decided to dance for her talent and she has no dance choreographed, she just says she's going to dance to "It's a Hard Knock Life" from Annie. So, I'll report back on how that turns out! The teachers did at least have the wisdom to limit each child to two minutes. I find that anything, or just about anything that a kid does for thirty seconds is tolerable, so hat might be about one and a half minutes too long for some, but again, expect a full report on Friday!

Friday, April 01, 2011

Charlotte report

We're almost two weeks out from Charlotte's little three-part surgery.  She had her old, yucky tubes taken out, a new set put in, and her adenoids removed.  About three days after her surgery when I was drawing her bath water, she covered her ears and said, "Mama!  Dat's too loud!"  Officially a first for Charlotte!  Charlotte saying something is too loud is the very definition of the pot calling the kettle black.

Her speaking voice did seem to lower a few decibels after the surgery, but I am sad to report that her ears must now be accustomed to the "loud" and she's returned to her previous ways.  In all seriousness though, I'm happy that our girl isn't dealing with clogged, likely painful ears anymore.

And for good measure, here's another Charlotte story.  I take Charlotte and Camille to "school" in the morning on my way to work.  We take one of two different routes, depending on the time we leave and LSU traffic.  One of our routes takes us through part of the Ag campus where there are cows and horses in fields right by the road.  A couple of mornings ago, I said, "Charlotte, look there are the cows."  And she replied, "Oh no!  No cows!  Mama, they are eatin' off the floor! Dat's yuck."