Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Picture and A Story

A picture is worth a thousand words or a story in the life of me. 
In the spirit of continued catch up...

The other day I was at the gym.  I had run there, between 2.5 and 3.5 miles one way depending if I take the direct route or a round about one.  I do weights and then run home.  While there I was seated on a stationary row machine, calves flexed hefting weights back to make sexy shoulders.  Angel, a man of Latino descent who I loosely know - he had been calling me Sara up to that day not really knowing me either, walked up to me and grabbed my calves and said, "You have such big calves.  How do I get calves that big?" 

I promptly told him that I was sweaty and he should probably not touch me.  That however complimentary it seemed to him, that most girls would not be happy to hear that they have big calves, that he should run more and that it was just my genetics.  Yeah, I'm one of those really blessed "girls" who can bulk up really easily.  Genetic jackpot for my brother counterparts, but here are my beastly calves. 
First weekend in April and October is hallowed.  For real hallowed in our house.  It is General Conference.  Well if you are a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (aka Mormon) it is the weekend twice a year, that the prophet, of the whole Earth, and the 12 apostles with all appropriate priesthood keys talks to the people and tells them what God wants them to know.  It may seem crazy to some, because we sit around for (5) two hour sessions between Saturday and Sunday watching them on TV or streaming them online. 

Now with my six kids you may ask yourself how do they sit so well for so long, well here are my best tips:
1.  My kids naturally follow my lead - if I have an attitude of absolute reverence and love for these meetings and men - my kids tend to follow suit and think likewise.
2.  I cook, bake and buy my way to a food coma.  Each kid gets to pick their favorite foods and we have them all that weekend.  For every thirty minutes they sit and listen reverently they get to eat one of their favorite food.  When they were younger this was crucial.  As they get older it is just another special part of the weekend.
3.  We veg out.  Pillows, blankets, forts, and cuddles abound as we all snuggle down to enjoy.  As a family who loves to be on the go, this weekend is a great weekend to recharge. 

You should watch sometime.  It won't be an experience you regret.  And if ever interested, come join us. 
My husband is super handy.  I love it when it suits me or saves us money.  Truth be told, it can sometimes be a burden as he fiddles his way into a new invention, a free unlimited supply of cardboard or any miscellaneous object, or gives him an "idea". 

But nothing makes me happier than when I look at things that are more organized as a result of his dinking.  In 30 minutes and with minimal dollars he solved my crowded shoe area in my closet.  I love this man.  I also love that I have my own walk-in-closet and he has his own.  No cross contaminating my organization with his "organization."
This little boy makes me laugh and want to pull my hair out.  He had a wiggly tooth forever.  He was so excited.  It was his first.  Each day he tempted me to wiggle it to feel how loose it was.  Each day I asked if he wanted me to pull it.  And each day his reply was something to the effect of not today, maybe tomorrow (wonder who he learned that delay tactic from?). 
Now if you know me, you know I am somewhat of a picker.  And this definitely came under that category near the end.  It needed to be pulled.  He often ended up in tears while eating and had to even call me from school in a panic about what would happen when he actually lost it (he does have some anxiety).  Daddy even tried to sneak it out.  Didn't work so well and he was a mess of tears, "pain" and distrust.
Finally I told him, he had no choice - he had to be brave and let me pull it.  He agreed and then promptly panicked.  He screamed and fought as we had to hold him down so I could pull it.  It took me less than a millisecond.  When I backed away from him, he asked, "Did you pull it?  I didn't even feel anything."  I know child.  I know!  This is not my first tooth rodeo.  If you weren't so adorable - I would be much more gray haired and bald.

Sometimes good friends make all the difference.  I love people, love to figure out how they work, what motivates them, all about who they are.  That being said, I'm pretty particular about my close friends.  Not that I don't want more, but time is a hot commodity for me.  I don't want to spend time on mediocre relationships, trying to make them better, trying to be something for someone I'm not in an effort to feel connected.  But when I have a friend, they are true.  The kind I can count on for a big crisis, a mini one, and a million laughs in between.

For me there are three main components.  They have to be a person of high moral standard and character and inspire me to be better than I am in some way, be understanding of my religion - because it is everything I am, but willing to get a little crazy with me because I have a mischievous side that loves to get up to no good shenanigans that will make me giggle endlessly and the memory will perk me up in the midst of a parenting crisis. 

And when that happens, it feels amazing.  They want to hear you brag about your kids because they love them almost as much as you do, they think of you over little things (you mention you like a kind of rice a lot and it shows up on your door step one night) and they connect with you over the dumb things and when you talk whether it's every day or every year you jump right back to where you always were.  Thanks Sue for being one of them.

Farm Show is over.  But the spirit of Farm Show remains, because it's Manheim.  In this small town, we take community seriously.  And it wouldn't be Manheim, if for a field trip we didn't go to the Farm Show.  My group of hooligans for the day.  This was just before the first injury that ever happened on my watch in over 30 field trip chaperoning affairs.  Beware of tag and tripping around jagged rocks.  It will lead to stitches in your head if you are a little boy. 
Does my life seem perfect or what?  It seems pretty perfect to me - most of the time.  My dishwasher may be on the fritz, my dryer on the verge of breaking, my ice/water maker on the front of the fridge finicky, my lawn filling with weeds, my car may be approaching 200,000 miles, my husband may have an untraditional job, I may be a single parenting it half the time, I may have foster kids in my home who make my life harder, I may volunteer more hours than I think I have in a day, and I probably am a little overweight, am re-dealing with adolescent acne in my 30's and wondering how I'm going to make it all work moment to moment, but still...it seems perfect to me.  I wonder what makes the difference.

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