Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Bartender (transferred from other format)

Chowder's parents told him that the bartender at the country club they live on was asking about Porkchop. How was he doing? What had he been up to? Telling them what a great kid he is.

and he is.

We just can't figure out when he's been hanging out in the bar. We're wondering if maybe we should keep a closer eye on him when we are visiting the grandparents.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Happy Shoes (transferred from other format)

I found these at Payless Shoes for $11.99. I just had to have them. I wear them with absolutely everything, every day. I see how happy my daughters are when they wear sparkly shoes and decided I would give it a try, too. It works. It really does. I call these my “Magic Shoes” and I went back and bought two more pairs for when these wear out.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Common Focus (transferred from other format)

It all goes by so fast. Even these days right now where I am scrambling and exhausted. or maybe MORE these days because I am scrambling and exhausted, I feel it all just slipping through my finger tips. They really do grow up so fast and right before our very eyes. Sweeting was *just* born! Wasn’t she? Weren’t they all?

Some of it is a welcome adjustment, such as the way the kids are able to pitch in more now that they are older. This week’s chores are Jellybean and Ladybug washing and folding one load of laundry a day (I still have to do another load, but still!) and The Meatball is spraying and wiping down all the bathrooms everyday (I clean them thoroughly once a week) and Porkchop is feeding the pets and cleaning up their waste everyday. That part is really nice.

But, that also leads us to the other places. The peer relationships that can be so tricky to navigate. The popular toys that go against our values. The introduction of media that we feel is too mature for them. This is where the growing up gets sticky and the test for how well we are holding on to our family’s values and identity. This is where I find the real struggles of parenting. This is where second guessing can begin to plague me. Is it really important that we don’t watch High School Musical, yet? What are my reasons for that again? Barbie? Power Rangers? In the end will really matter? Am I making a mountain of too many little mole hills? Aren’t there more important core issues that I need to stand on? But then aren’t all these little pieces a part of holding on to the core issues? How do we decide which activities we participate in?

I read once in one of the million parenting books that I have read, that each family should write its own mission statement. This idea intrigued me because mission statements are so key to the non-profit organizations in which I participate. The mission statement should be short and to the point and then help an organization or family focus its...well, mission. An organization cannot do everything. That dilution of mission means that it will do many things poorly instead of a few things well. So, if something comes up that does not fit in our mission? then we simply don’t do it. Girl Scouts? A great organization but if it’s not a part of who are family wants to be, than great! Decision made. And not just another thing that we have to add to our list of things we are doing. It is too easy for a family to fall into the “do many things poorly” trap. and Hannah Montana? Bakugan? Does it fit with our values? no? yes? super decision made. As we start embarking on this next phase of family life, it would be good to have a common focus.

When Chowder gets home I think we will be investigating this further. It will make each individual decision easier when we have a larger lens to look