Maybe It’s Just Me

Brad Paisley got it right. When he described his girl as “sunshine mixed with a little hurricane”, I’m pretty sure he was describing Sweetgirl. That kid is a whirlwind of toothless eight-going-on-eighteen.  Ahab and The Nana would surely describe me similarly… plus a few teeth. And pounds. And years.

IMG_1477

The times I have to watch my Sunshine hide behind clouds of doubt or insecurity, though, because of the way others treat her, it’s my own inner hurricane that starts brewing.

I can’t be the only one who identifies with the inner hurricanes I see within these tender-hearted girls. Self-doubt is a powerful ingredient in an emotional storm and it surely does seem like there are far too many of us huffing harsh words out onto others in hopes that we will feel smarter, prettier, more popular, and even seen. We whip our attitudes around and lash out at others in an effort to boost our own meager confidence. We think more highly of ourselves than we ought in hopes that we matter more than the next girl.

And none of it does a single thing to advance love, joy, peace, kindness or goodness.

No. In fact,  witnessing how hurtful and mean girls can be toward one another is distressing. Watching the devastation left in the hearts of the hurt is heartbreaking. Too often this meanness starts a vicious circle of behavior: Be hurt. Hurt another. Feel better. Be hurt again. Hurt another again. Feel better again. And on and on it goes.

And, I’m tired of hearing that this is just how girls are with one another. Responsibility gets to fly off on the shoulders of Blame, that way. And, assuming that girls will determine social hierarchy with little emotional fallout makes about as much sense to me as throwing a non-swimmer into a pool and saying, “Good luck with that swimming thing.”

Comments sharing how there will always be mean girls fall hard on my heart, too, because I’m a firm believer in doing what you can. Don’t we all remember the Starfish Story? We can throw one starfish starving for it’s watery habitat back, and it will make a difference for that one single starfish, won’t it?

Aren’t the hearts of girls worth just as much effort and attention?

With their increasingly younger noses perpetually pressed to their smart phones or tablets, and seeking social acceptance there, it seems obvious that guidance is needed. We adults need to be checking in often enough to know who and what these girls of ours are trying to get their self-worth from.

And, while we’re at it, where are we trying to get our own self-worth from?

As I’ve mentioned here and here, I do believe our worth is something a few of us adults need to be reminded of, too.

Or, maybe it’s just me.

What do you say we work on battening down those hurricane hatches together?

God knows Grace gushes in my general direction because I desperately need it.

Often.

Can we agree to work on showing, not telling, our girls how to treat themselves, first. Can we remind them again and again that they are created in the image of One who loves them more than any Facebook or Insta “like” ever will. And can we do that together, by caring more about the eyes watching us refresh our screens than those on our screens.

Sweetgirl needs some help learning how to combat The Mean with the truth that we are each a special God-designed mix of sunshine and hurricane. Especially as we boot up for a new school year.

And, quite frankly, her mama can always use some more work in that area, too.

Always.

Yes indeedy.

Who’s with me?

Advertisements

Thankfuls 2

I’m sitting here with a tissue shoved up my nose typing away because my poor hand literally got tired of reaching for yet another tissue to stem the tide of…  We’ve got a house full of colds. I think that’s about all you really need to know.

Time to move along now.

Lately, I’ve been realizing that I am not a “finisher”. I am a Starter. And a pretty good one, if I do say so myself. I can start me an argument, for example, like no one’s business. But finishing it out? Well… that’s above my pay grade.

So, I’m making a commitment to see this Thankfuls thing through because a) I like the idea of this and 2) I need more Thankfulness in my life. How bout you?

Just putting it out there so that those of you who love me can call me out on it if I start slacking.

Without further ado, this week I am thankful for:

1) Tissues. Soft white tissues that have no lotion, thank-you-very-much.  I’ve gone through a couple of boxes in the last few days and Sweetboy and Sweetgirl have, too. The tissue making people see us coming and start jumping for joy. I know they do. I can feel their wallets shivering in anticipation of how many boxes we’ll go through,  today, alone!

2) Negative Strep Tests.  Yup. Per #1, there have been sore “froats” in our house again this week, but so far – we’ve all been declared strep free. Praise The Good Lord!

3) iPhones and facetime. There are some precious bloggers who have become real-life friends to me this past year.  Facetime has allowed me, well… some facetime with the ones who are cross country.  And some of them, unlike me, are great finishers, and chock-full of wisdom and guidance; which, The Facetime facilitates quite nicely. Plus, I can still be in my jammies while we talk.

4) Homelife Magazine.

homelife_magazine

Some of my very most favorite writers (I’m eyeballin’ you Melanie Shankle and Sophie Hudson) write for Homelife, on occasion; as do Kristen Welch and Mark Batterson and a bunch of others who write words that I just eat on up.

and lastly…

5) Sweetgirl and I got some special one-on-one time while Sweetboy was at Karate this week.  She determined that we would play “friends” with her favorite stuffed animals. (I jokingly asked her if mama could name them Joey, Ross, Rachel, Chandler, Phoebe, and Monica. She was not amused. She was, however, confused.) I am so thankful for some mommy-daughter time. I love me some mama-son time, too, but this week, it was Team Pink!  And this is where the action took place. (And I secretly named the sisters on the right Phoebe and Ursula, because, FRIENDS!)

friends_missindeedy

And that, as they say, is a wrap.  Which I’m about to go crawl into. Because I’m cold. I may even snuggle up with Phoebe. And Ursula.

Yes indeedy!

What are you thankful for this week?

So That’s Where They Were

Lately, my inbox has been lonely.

Really really lonely.

On any given day, I usually have a good 10 email notifications from my favorite blogs about a New Post. And I love getting those notifications!

But these last 2 weeks, I’ve had absolutely nothin’!

Spam. That’s all I ever seemed to have.

Except that it wasn’t spam.

No. Not spam at all.

You see, I discovered something when I went to clean out my deleted emails and my spam emails, (because I like things all nice and tidy like that, and because I had all of this extra time that I usually reserve for reading my favorite blogs.)

Apparently, someone had gotten a hold of my phone and placed the entire contents of my inbox into spam mail. And, it wasn’t me.

Now, I’m not naming any names here, but I suspect a particular 39 inch child in this house.  She was trying to sneak my phone away, a few weeks ago, to listen to the newfangled sounds and ringtones on the new phone Sweetman got me for my birthday. But, I caught her.  And I quickly realized that she had also, in the process, moved a bunch of my little iPhone icon thingies around, in the process.

But I thought that was the extent of the damage.

Silly me.

When you are five, and something of mama’s looks fun and exciting and sparkly and has buttons, what do you do?  You just started pressing this and that and… Voila! Who knows what just happened, but SHOOT – it was fun!

All of my eagerly anticipated notifications were given the unfair label of “spam”.

Boo hiss.

So, if you haven’t heard from me in a while, blame Sweetgirl.

I certainly am.

Yes indeedy.

Brave New World, Indeed

The world my Sweetchildren will navigate is lightyears away from the one that I did as a child.

 

Used with Permission, http://www.geraldthesheep.com

 

How do we teach them that there’s not only an App for that, but also an appropriate social interaction, too.

We used to ask the Grampa.  Now they ask The Google.

Tweets are no longer lovely sounds from a bird in nature.

 

It’s not all bad, though.  Sitting around the kitchen table this weekend enjoying some family time (you know, where each of you sit with an electronic device of some kind and “enjoy each other’s company?),  I received this text from Sweetboy:

 

I’ll overlook the grammar for now…

 

Does anything worry you about technology as a staple of our children’s diets?

Siri-us?

Siri has been getting quite the workout in our house lately. A workout that I’m fairly certain she isn’t enjoying all that much.

Sweetman:  “Why can’t I remember the name of the actor that played the White Shadow?”

Sweetboy: “Just ask The Siri Lady, daddy.”

Or…

Mama:  “I wonder where the closest ice cream place is?”

Sweetboy: “Siri will know, Mama.”

And just when I thought her ill-treatment was contained to our house, The Nana called.  Poor, poor Siri…

Me:  “So, Mom, how are things going with your new iPhone?”

The Nana: “I hate that Siri Lady.  Sometimes, I hit her by accident, but I don’t want to talk to her so I just say ‘Oh, shut-up Siri.  I don’t have anything to say to you!’ ”

Maybe I should steer the Sweetchildren towards degrees in techno-therapy.  It’s almost a given that Siri’s gonna need it.

Indeed.

Smart Phones For Better Marriages

Sweetman proposed the title.  I thought credit should go where credit is due.  Now that I’ve dispensed with the niceties, let me explain how we arrived at this catchy little title.  It was a team effort, you see; us being the two people in the marriage in question and all…

I kindly asked Sweetman to do something-or-other, as I usually do at one time or another. The something or other was of utmost urgency, I’m sure. So urgent, in fact, that he plumb forgot.  I was surprised. It was, after all, a fairly important thing.  Employing all graciousness, I had another go at it.  You know, asking him to remember something and all.  He forgot again.  I was perplexed. “This man is brilliant!”, I thought.  So how in the name of all that’s important could he forget something so, so… important?!  However, having infinite patience, (get OFF the floor and stop that laughing!), I tried again.  Oh, I waited a few days.  The necessity of the prior request was negated by, well… time and all.  This time, Sweetman insisted he absolutely would, he definitely COULD, remember.  In fact, said he, not only would he remember, he’d remember on time!  Oh- this, friends? This, I just HAD to see to believe.

And, I am here to tell you that he DID remember!  On time!  Well, his iphone remembered, anyway.  His oh-so-smart phone reminded him not once, not twice, but five times.  Yes.  I did, indeed, say five times.  He further admitted to me that his phone had to remind him five times in just two short hours for him to be able to “remember” to do the vitally important thing I had asked him to remember.  If my phone dinged at me five times in two hours to remind me of a “thing to do”, I’d huck that thing into the closest pond.  It’s a good thing I’m not married to a smart phone.  Although, I have heard there are some that will ask Siri if she would like to.  You know, get married.   And that’s just weird. No? I digress…

It would seem that smart phones do indeed make for better marriages.  You see, Sweetman now has a fail-proof system for remembering all of those oh-so-important things that I ask him to.  And that IS smart! Yes indeedy.