Wednesday, May 25, 2011

the truth of whatever it is I'm talking about

Um. Hum. Ho. Etc.

There is a lot to get done around here. Hectic weekend coming up. Hence a hectic pre-weekend. You know, the last days of school and the like. Plus some.

Off to the races, my dears.

Friday, May 20, 2011

A day in the life

For breakfast this morning I ate the remainder of slice of key lime pie.

Yesterday was our 11th anniversary {Ben & mine} and we celebrated in a fairly low key fashion: We dropped our kids off to school and then took the little kids and went out to breakfast,

then went to the bookstore where I purchased a book on Vermeer and a fat madlibs book for my kids since summer is on it's way and it looks like it will never stop raining and for our future sanity's sake {my kids and mine} I had to get it,

and then we went to a French bakery after I had picked up ballet tickets for this weekend and I got an eclair and Ben got a Paris-Brest and Oliver loved his pain au chocolate and Camille was too full from breakfast to want anything,

and then we went home and Ben stopped in at work to check a render and then Ben picked up the girls and we had a happy afternoon where I went and bought about a billion potty treats because we are in the final {I hope} throws {throws!!!} of potty training and I needed to pull out some big guns to get us to the end {I hate potty training} {and no, the treats are not for me, though perhaps they should be},

and then we fed the kids and put them to bed,

and then we ordered in {CPK - Ben adores their mushroom pizza} and ate dinner sans enfants,

and then watched Jeeves & Wooster, and ate pieces of a gigantic Toblerone chocolate bar. ENORMOUS.

Oh yes, and earlier in the day we stopped by the hardware store to look at lights. But we have yet to find a satisfactory one {It's for our entry way}.

This is what 11 years looks like. And it's good.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Random Thought

So yesterday on a local radio program they were talking about flooding in Utah, since it looks like this Spring there will be, again, lots of flooding in Utah. And one of the men mentioned that in the flood of forty-something when he was in sixth-grade they pulled all of the sixth-graders out of school to help sandbag etc. to stop the flooding.

"That tells you how bad it was," he said. "That they got the sixth-graders out of school."

I thought something else. I think that tells you how much less we expect of our kids these days, and how much more they could really do.

The End.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

In exchange for a lanyard

In Billy Collins' poem "The Lanyard" he talks about, yes, a lanyard; one he made for his mother while away at camp.

He contrasts all of the things his mother gave him with this simple offering of his red and white lanyard. You can hear him read it, with his dry tone. It is hilariously funny, in part of course, because it is so true.

The last lines attest to the childish lack of understanding all children have of everything your parents, and especially your mother, have done for you- I was sure as a boy could be/that this useless, worthless thing I wove/out of boredom would be enough to make us even.

We chuckle at that. Of course the truth is this: that the balance of what the parent gives, or should give, and what the child gives, or should give, should be weighted heavily on the side of the parent. That is the parent's job.

If you are a parent you did not sign up for equal companionship. You signed up for the "thousands of meals" and to provide "clothing and a good education." You signed up to give the "breathing body and a beating heart/strong bones and teeth,/and two clear eyes to read the world. You signed up for that sacrifice that could never be compensated for by a simple lanyard. Or really anything else.

And yet, I have learned as a mother, that the lanyard can be enough. Because what the child does for the parent, the mother, the father, is provide the opportunity for them to be a person who does all of these things for another person. To devote enough love and time and exhausted energy in overcoming the dangerous human traits of selfishness and laziness and the easy human ability of simply getting lost in the unimportant, while caring for someone created of your own flesh and blood - well, it seems the most effective way to go about becoming a decent human being.

In this, our current state of the world, it can be a difficult thing for a young woman to settle into motherhood. It's hard, self-sacrificial, lonely, and unglamorous. But the truth from our Savior, that "he who loseth his life...shall find it" is found in the glorious surrender of the self for another.

I find myself, in the midst of intense motherhood, with five small children swirling around me, with my strengths, a few, and my weaknesses, many, and I hope that as I hone this craft, that as my children impulsively act on what I have given them (as children are not so prone to reflection until they are older), that they will be inclined to offer of themselves something as simple as a lanyard, and that I, in the grace of true motherhood, will be thrilled to receive it.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

a few things

May just started but I swear it's going to be over before it began. I know, that seems impossible to you, but I bet if we chatted with Albert Einstein for long enough, we would understand that there are simply some months that are that way. And this May shall be one of them.

Of course April wrapped itself up with a bang what with the Royal Wedding and all. I loved it. I think Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, is lovely. What a dress! And some lovely remarks on marriage. And a cathedral full of Brits singing "Jerusalem" and "God Save the Queen." Also, blaring fanfare when THE QUEEN {according to the official programme} entered the church. I do, indeed, have British blood in me. Perhaps that is why I loved watching the wedding. And perhaps also why I loved watching Jeeves and Wooster last night. Who knows?

Obama killed at the White House Correspondence Dinner. {"Killed" you should know, is, indeed (British!), a technical term in comedy-routine speech.} He was very funny. So was Seth Meyers.

A new company, Paper Coterie, launched yesterday. They sent me info beforehand {along with some cute little necklaces for my girls} so I got to poke around their website a bit and it looks like they have some sweet fun things for preserving and sharing memories. You can make your own little books, calendars, journals, etc. {Full disclosure - they also sent me a journal. It's very cute.}

Anyway, it's late. I should be in bed. Have a good weekend.