family, parenting, small town living

We’re Village People

Moms and dads, let’s talk.

Raising kids is soul searching, boundless lovely, work. And Exhausting. I want, need help along the way. As I get older, the less I want to worry about how this looks and sounds and the more I want to rely on others to support in “raising” our kids. No I’m not asking for handouts or free babysitting, just good ole support from my village.

I’d like to know if my kid is being a jerk or my daughter, a mean girl. Similarly I’d be ecstatic to learn that one sat with the lonely, talked with the new kid, or helped the aging. I have one entering preteen female drama years and another less than a year from teenagehood! The girl already sees and experiences the drama; you’re my friend but now not, I’m too good for you, I only talk to older girls now, yada yada yada crap. If we’re hanging out and my son is ignoring your kid, let me know. As our children grow and explore functions, events without us, you might encounter them while with friends or perhaps teammates, I hope and pray that they remember to speak to you, our village. I’d appreciate knowing either way, it’s what generations of villagers did, looked out for others small and big. As friends, I’ll lend a hand, an ear, or friendly face to you and yours. If our kids had been friends but suddenly not, I might ask. When your daughter blows off my daughter, perhaps I’ll inquire. Hopefully you, my parental posse of support, would do the same. Parenting means a village scaffolding of sorts. I’ll get your back, if you’ll support mine.

I’m not talking helicoptering, I’m talking the village, our village. I remember growing up and being acutely aware that most places I went, someone was watching. Not as in the boogie man, but the “village”. My parents people, extensions of our family. Did I mess up sometimes? Yep. Did my parents occasionally get insider information? Yep. Once, when I was 16 and out driving who knows where with a friend, I was driving a bit fast and perhaps a bit reckless. They found out, I’m not sure from whom, but I have my suspicions. And you know what, it was good. My village, the one surrounding me as I traversed my teenage years, let me grow and stumble.

We, my husband and I, are village people. We’re in it with you and we’d like you to be along for the journey. Happily we’ll be a part of your village too. Let’s together support each other’s offspring as they stumble and soar and wind their way. Villagers, friends, let’s be in it together.

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Uncategorized

We’re Village People

Moms and dads, let’s talk.

Raising kids is soul searching, boundless lovely, work. And Exhausting. I want, need help along the way. As I get older, the less I want to worry about how this looks and sounds and the more I want to rely on others to support in “raising” our kids. No I’m not asking for handouts or free babysitting, just good ole support from my village.

I’d like to know if my kid is being a jerk or my daughter, a mean girl. Similarly I’d be ecstatic to learn that one sat with the lonely, talked with the new kid, or helped the aging. I have one entering preteen female drama years and another less than a year from teenagehood! The girl already sees and experiences the drama; you’re my friend but now not, I’m too good for you, I only talk to older girls now, yada yada yada crap. If we’re hanging out and my son is ignoring your kid, let me know. As our children grow and explore functions, events without us, you might encounter them while with friends or perhaps teammates, I hope and pray that they remember to speak to you, our village. I’d appreciate knowing either way, it’s what generations of villagers did, looked out for others small and big. As friends, I’ll lend a hand, an ear, or friendly face to you and yours. If our kids had been friends but suddenly not, I might ask. When your daughter blows off my daughter, perhaps I’ll inquire. Hopefully you, my parental posse of support, would do the same. Parenting means a village scaffolding of sorts. I’ll get your back, if you’ll support mine.

I’m not talking helicoptering, I’m talking the village, our village. I remember growing up and being acutely aware that most places I went, someone was watching. Not as in the boogie man, but the “village”. My parents people, extensions of our family. Did I mess up sometimes? Yep. Did my parents occasionally get insider information? Yep. Once, when I was 16 and out driving who knows where with a friend, I was driving a bit fast and perhaps a bit reckless. They found out, I’m not sure from whom, but I have my suspicions. And you know what, it was good. My village, the one surrounding me as I traversed my teenage years, let me grow and stumble.

We, my husband and I, are village people. We’re in it with you and we’d like you to be along for the journey. Happily we’ll be a part of your village too. Let’s together support each other’s offspring as they stumble and soar and wind their way. Villagers, friends, let’s be in it together.

family, parenting

Follow the Yellow Brick..,er Your Own Road

Dang this parenting gig is hard. Emotionally draining for kids and parents.

As parents we want to nurture and protect while also assuring independence and assertiveness are taught. Hovering and rolling out red carpet is not our style. Both kids and parents can expect some bumps, heartaches, and lessons learned when trying to “successfully” get kids to 18.

Successfully, that’s the key word. We could easily layer all the foundational work for our kids to avoid such bumps, trials, and aches. But truthfully is that what’s best? Will he or she be successful if I hand pick this and ensure they get that (sports, teachers, connections, friends – you pick)?

It seems that in recent years more parents are living through their kids; injecting into child relationships, hand picking friendships, teams, classes, etc. can our kids still fail? Yes. Will kids still make poor choices sometimes? Yep. Can I line kid A’s childhood with yellow bricks hoping that he makes it to the wizard successfully? Yes, but even Dorothy stumbled along the way and strayed from that mighty golden path. Hopefully like Auntie Em taught her, our children will follow Dorothy’s path. Brush things off, regain strength, and continue on to our destination.

Teaching children to have strength when left out, confidence when being overlooked, kindness when frustration settles in, and to love when you just don’t understand why something is the way that it is, that is the true yellow brick road.

Sometimes I long to make things easier for the three Z offspring. If I invite kid X over, will my kid suddenly be “in” that group? No. If only I was friends with that set of parents, then maybe my kid would be invited over. Nope. Oh that girl no longer wants to be friends after several years of friendship and now only wants to hang with the older crowd…should I smooth things over and force a relationship for my child? No. My kid didn’t make the cut and now his friend will not even say hi or play with him. It hurts, all of it, but we build them up and hope that they stay steady.

In the red rover of life, they may not be picked first or second, or even in the middle, but they will know how to hold steadfast and continue on their own path, even if clotheslined along the way.

family, parenting

It’s Hard

Marriage is hard. There I said it.

Forget the movies of all happy moments, cheery smiles, and love music. Sure there are bits of that, most would agree. But there are also times of no talking, uncertainty, hurt feelings, and distrust. Why?

Because, marriage is a continuous learning curve! If it’s not, hmm, seems boring.

Sure, we might argue over who loaded the dishwasher wrong. Or why one didn’t follow me the loosely knit, not written in stone, parenting agreement. Or perhaps, why did you do that? I cannot believe you said this.

If we didn’t have these moments, how would we continue to go as a couple? How could we learn more deeply about each other? How would I discover more reasons why I love him?

Is it hard? Hell yeah! Is it stressful? Of course! Then why?!?!

Simply put, because without this marriage and hurdles, I wouldn’t have grown into the person I am today. Those rough patches, the stress, the tears, are what bring us closer and help us dig deeper. Together.

Remember that the next time you see someone on social media talking about Mr Fabulous or amazing Mrs Perfect or kissy kissy face blah blah blah.

That’s not reality, that’s a false faced love bug. Don’t get envious, don’t follow. Stay your course. Because real love is the arguing over who left the van windows open when rain was forecast, wondering why you let the kids eat stew for breakfast, or whose fault it was that one missed an appointment. And if you throw kids into the mix. A new set of marriage pressures, responsibilities, and a new kind of love to share.

It’s how you get through these moments, that’s where the love is. The real heart of marriage.

Dig your heels in and hold on, that is marriage.

parenting, Uncategorized

An Almost Missed Moment

Driving to the youngest’s field trip to the zoo, I envisioned a day spent with his friends and a time for me to connect with other parents. Upon getting off the bus, my son shared his plans; a solo day, a day alone, no friends, no moms. I longfully glanced over at the moms and dads and kids venturing off together, envious of their shared time together.

But then something magical happened. My son wrapped me his arms around me and announced that I smelled good. Afterwards he stared up at me, then announced it was the best mama date ever. And we hadn’t even looked at any animals yet!

What happened next sealed the deal. He grabbed my hand. Yep in public. With classmates around.

We ventured off on our own path, own adventure, occasionally seeing friends, but it was his time. His agenda.

Our plan was to have an early dinner afterwards. When I heard of others heading to a nearby Mexican restaurant, I attempted to tag along. He asked to think about it. Later he said no, I want hibachi, sushi, and only you.

What did we do? We ended our time with a hibachi table and chef to ourselves, many laughs, and lots of moments that would have been missed if I didn’t stop and listen.

Uncategorized

Life is a Jar of Rocks

Some say life is a highway; road that winds through calm, quaint areas leading to roads that blast through mountains and past life moments.

That’s where I’ve been stuck, on this coiling motherhood path.

A much needed teaching position change, an increase in family activities, and well, kids in general.  Life has been like a meat and three plate; exhilarating with sides of exhausting, exciting, and essentially fast.  2 years without a post?!

Reading and writing and cooking, my jar fillers.  Without them, my jar of life rocks, seems full, in reality, it’s just sand and pebbles.  My highway left me focusing on life’s sand and pebbles, both of which are less than stable and non-fulfilling.  My rocks, I need to get back to my rocks.

Some say put your feet in sand to feel better, I’m focusing on becoming a rock collector.

 

family, parenting

Slowing Life Down

Pick up. Drop off. Dinner. Homework. Bedtime routine.  Repeat, repeat, repeat.  Leaving parents to crash into the engulfing couch for an hour or two of meaningless tube time.

Over Christmas break, we found ourselves relaxed, hunched over the dining table perplexed with an old past time, a puzzle.  Now after seeing each little one nestled in for dreamy visions, we pounce at the chance to twist and turn pieces until alignment is made.  Life has slowed and calm hearts are seeping back in.  The mister now steals away moments to gaze at the puzzle, hoping for a piece to float into place.    I love seeing his contentment and hear the calm in his spirit.  #slowinglifedown