Monday, March 30, 2009

Planting Taters

Don't miss my post about planting potatoes here! :)

Friday, March 27, 2009


Yesterday I was really stressing. I had many uncertain, scary, or frustrating things swirling around in my head, and the more it swirled, the more overwhelming it felt.

I decided to sit down, make a list of everything swirling around in there, and see what could be done about each item. When those items swirl it feels like more than it is, and I knew that by putting it onto paper I could bring it all back into a realistic amount of stuff to deal with, and make a plan.

I couldn't find any paper upstairs, so came down to my office area to look for a notebook. Then I got sidetracked onto the computer for a bit because I had a project hanging over my head that needed to be resolved. I decided to ask my friend Sue for help with a techie trouble, and quickly clicked on my gmail to send her an instant message. "Are you there?!" I quickly typed.

"Yes. I'm here!" came the reply.

And I then realized it was a different Sue that I had clicked on.

"Oops! Wrong Sue!" I quickly typed back.

"Well pooh!" she joked at me.

And then I thought about who I was talking to.

This Sue is a life coach, specializing in things like joy and peace. I wondered if perhaps there was a good reason to have accidentally IM'd her.

"How are you doing?" she typed.

"Honestly? Tired. Stressed. Overwhelmed."

And she then gave me some wonderful nuggets of wisdom:

What can you do to make it easy, fun, and lucrative?

You CAN ask for help! Ask for what you need.


What is or is not supporting my values in this?

Without hearing the long version of what was going on, she gave me excellent tools to get to work with.

Once we were winding down our brief chat, I grabbed one of the notebooks on my desk. Opened the front page to see what notebook it was, and found that I have serendipitously selected one that I had purchased specifically to do copywork along with my children during school time. My copywork only happened one day: January 5, 2009. I had copied a bit out of a book I was reading then:

Each day, we're given many opportunities to open up or shut down.
The most precious opportunity presents itself when we come to the place where we think we can't handle whatever it happening.
It's too much.
It's gone too far.
We feel bad about ourselves.
There's no way we can manipulate the situation to make ourselves come out looking good.
No matter how hard we try, it just won't work.
Basically, life has just nailed us.

-from When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times by Pema Chodron.

I typed back to tell her, "You'll never believe what notebook I happened to pick up, and what it says inside..." and then I shared it with her. I was immediately reminded of many helpful things I had learned from reading that book.

"That's no coincidence, you know." she said, echoing my own thoughts.

Maybe sometimes we go through hard things in order to be reminded that we are not alone.


After that I found a quiet spot to do my writing, make my list of swirling, scary things that had been weighing me down. And then it was clear what I could do, what I could not do, and what I could ask for help with. And now those monsters are at least somewhat tamed, I have made progress, and even found a way to make some of it easy, fun, and lucrative! (which I laughed out loud at when she first wrote it, thinking it was absurd)

A wonderful serendipitous experience!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Boys at the Creek

I just loved going to the creek with my younger boys yesterday. Their spontaneity is so fun!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Meghan McCain: I like her

I discovered Meghan McCain's blog somewhere during the campaign months, and have enjoyed her fun and smart perspective on politics and life.

She wrote a great post about body image here, and more recently an article on it here.

I was surprised to learn that Meghan had been criticized for her body size. Weird! I've always thought of her as beautiful, and still can't wrap my mind around someone calling her heavy or fat. What on earth kind of society are we in that a perfectly beautiful young woman is called fat in public by another woman?

I always find it ironic and sad that people seem to feel that being convinced of their rightness also entitles them to behave badly.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

My Baby Is Turning Six Today

My youngest child is a real sweetheart in many ways. As he has known his birthday was coming up, any time I would say "You are my favorite five year old!" he would say, "And when I'm six, I'll be your favorite six year old!" Sometimes when he said it he sounded like he might be just slightly concerned that our adoration might expire when he was done being five.

No chance. :)

I felt a pang of sadness at saying goodbye to five year olds yesterday. Aside from grandkids, I'll never get another five year old. This particular five has really been a delight. Last night I said to him that I have loved having him be 5, and that I am looking forward to spending 6 with him.

We are planning a fun day. Friends from out of town are coming to help us celebrate, and he'll get to have some extended family here for the party as well, which doesn't normally happen. He had simple wishes for gifts, and I think all of them have been fulfilled, which I know he is going to be very excited about.

It's going to be a good day.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Keeping Things Positive

Today was a beautiful day here. My husband was off today, so once school was done he and the boys played outside and then decided that it would be great to build a campfire and have a cookout tonite. This is one of their favorite things to do, and they were excited that we were back into "campfire season" around here. :)

They went to the store, bought hot dogs, mac and cheese, and smores stuff. They had a great time sawing branches to have enough sticks to roast their hot dogs and marshmallows on.

By bed time I started to usher the boys toward bed, but caught wind of their sweaty little selves and decided that 5 minute baths were needed. 5 Minute Baths happen on nights when it's all business bathtime. Quick in and out, with me making sure everybody gets cleaned and moved right along to bed.

My 7 year old got into the bath, and his sweet little legs were pretty dirty. My first reaction was to exclaim (in a friendly way) how dirty he was. but then I had an inspiration.

"Look at these legs! These are happy legs! These are legs that tell me that you have had a really fun day playing outside!"

He grinned and grinned as he recounted the fun he had had all day long. :)

This little scenario turned out so sweet, and reminded me how simple it can be to keep things positive, and to open up communication and make happy memories. Just wanted to share that with you all. :)

Friday, March 06, 2009

Wanting to Start Making Money Online?

I know that many people are looking for ways to earn extra money today. Using the internet is the best way I know how to do that.

Just recently an amazing new resource became available that teaches TONS about probably every aspect of making money legitimately on the internet. And guess what---it's FREE!

If you're at all interested, I encourage you to check it out. I have been learning from the site creator for several months now and have been extremely impressed with what he has to say. I hope it is a help to you.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Gathering Wool...

To Do List: check

Kids In Bed: check

Getting Things Done: check

Get Distracted and Wonder if it is ok to stop working and do something funner: check!

Sunday, March 01, 2009


I just watched an interesting photo and audio presentation about a new book called Right. The author and photographer spent time at Patrick Henry College, and documents her observations there with photography, in addition to words.

The author does a wonderful job of respectfully discussing her experience at PHC. For me, these photos remind me of so many reasons why, even as a Christian homeschooling mother of six, that Patrick Henry College has absolutely no appeal to me. The author probably has little-to-no idea about the big movements behind the philosophy that PHC is built upon. The whole patriarchy thing, the whole flawed glorification of days gone by thing, and the us-against-them thing. Frankly, I found a lot of the photos kind of sad, and some of them just kind of embarrassing. More than a current event book, it's more like a side show at the circus kind of look into a subculture of the US. Curious. A little interesting. A little disturbing.