Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Time Marches On

...whether you notice or not. I cannot believe it has been almost exactly three years since I've written here. And so much has changed.

Just looking at the header above...I'm no longer a stay-at-home mom and my kids are full-fledged Michiganders now. Not a hint of California left, really, except memories washed with fondness. And those are just stark facts, not the nuance of which life is mostly composed.

Life has changed. We, each of us, have changed. And I wasn't really that aware of the change until I came back to this blog to find a quote for a new mom, a young unsuspecting woman entering this journey. Revisiting an old life here caused me to sit down. And evaluate. (Just for a minute though, because I have to get back to the taxes.) About the good. The hard. The tears. And the trying. And those shiny moments that I'll hopefully remember in my golden years.

Revisiting has also caused me to re-evaluate. (In this 15 minute interlude between 1099s.) Perhaps a new blog should be birthed. Because it feels like "Golden Smiles" isn't what it's about anymore.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Circle of Life

Ally likes to take showers with me. She especially enjoys two things about showers with Mommy: being held and playing with my wet hair. Today, as I kneeled on the shower floor, soaking in the warm spray, she "styled and shampooed" and flip-flopped my hair back and forth. My mind raced ahead thirteen years to me doing her hair for prom...probably curls and glitter will most certainly play some role. My mind then raced ahead some fifty years to her washing her old mother's hair and taking care of me the way I now take care of her.

I better do a good job...

Monday, May 20, 2013

Sunday, May 12, 2013

To the Guardians of the Future of this Earth

Introspective and retrospective today, thinking back on the past several years of parenthood. The screw-ups, the golden moments, the yelling, the loving, the laughing and the heartbroken moments. The dance parties, the "I'm not going to make it" moments, the absolute certainties and the hope-crushing doubts. The breath-catching responsibility for these gorgeous lives coupled with the soul-freeing knowledge that all we have to do is follow their lead and provide the lantern to the light the way, the love to sustain them and the net to catch them should they stumble. 

I know I screw this up every day. I'll never win Mother of the Year or have my home featured in Better Homes & Gardens. More often than not, there are hamster droppings outside of the cage, dog hair on the floor and a ring around the toilet. The kids do not get a bath every day...neither do I. Not a day goes by that I don't speak through gritted teeth or let a sharp word slip or raise my voice. I occasionally think, "I am not smart enough for this and I am going to ruin them forever." 

But then again...maybe I don't need to be smart enough. Maybe my brain doesn't have to be big...but my heart does. And that, my friends, is something I can do. I have learned how to listen to my heart and to know when something's not right and when something is. I am learning how to live according to my own integrity and truth and not a teacher's idea, a parenting "technique" or an expert's opinion. And perhaps that's enough. Love them, on their terms, not mine. And until they have the power and means to follow their own heart, hold their heart in mine and listen to them both.

And, with that, I'll cheat and re-post something from three years ago. It's as relative now as it was then...at least for me. Happy Mother's Day.

Someone sent me the video below in celebration of Mother's Day. I just now viewed it for the first time. Talk about making an impact. It reminds you why you're doing this thing...this parenting thing. It reminds you that there is a spiral effect here.

It's more than scraping the week-old banana off the wall. Instead, it's "I explored a banana today!"

More than washing load after load after load of laundry only to have it sit, clean, in the closet for a week before actually being folded. Instead, it's "I got to help fold all afternoon!"

More than rushing to make preschool drop-off and then rushing, rushing, rushing to make preschool pick-up. Instead, it's "Mommy, mommy, mommy, you're here!"

More than wiping noses, eyes, bottoms and hands. Instead, somewhere down the road, it's the remembrance of being cared for.

Those things we do now; coaxing them through a terrifying night, laughing at the ridiculous, loving them so hard that it hurts (us)...those things are building the Future. Their future. And ours. I forget the bigger picture here. A lot. As the author says, you lose yourself. And then you find yourself. And then you lose yourself. For me, it's a cycle. And I need reminders like this. Because, at least for this afternoon, I can be aware of the incredible importance of Being Here.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Family Life 2

So, a lot has happened since we last spoke.

The gods that control Michigan weather have bestowed upon us 70 degrees! For one day. Followed by snow the next day.

Coffee's gettin' better.

Found my glasses and lost two hamsters. Each at separate times. One was AWOL for 24 hours. And Ally just found the other one after a three-day rampage through our walls and floors. Little suckers have been having quite the adventurous life lately. Ironically, both of their escapes were my fault.

Sascha was diagnosed with pneumonia. Guess he really was sick after all.

Ally got over whatever ailed her, went back to school and then got sick again. She now also has pneumonia...along with a smattering of ear infection and strep. She's on amoxicillin now (the pink medicine, remember that stuff?). Hates it. Was convinced she was going to throw up this morning after taking it. While she was retching into the toilet but only producing saliva, I told her, "You know, Al, if you throw up the pink stuff, you'll just have to take more again." "Oh.....I'm done." she replied and left the bathroom.

The robin has moved on to our neighbors' houses as well. One neighbor remarked that if he has a good breeding season he's going to think he's pretty hot stuff...chasing off all those other male competitors.'

The basement, of which the previous owners said, "We've never noticed any seasonal dampness." started leaking like a sieve on Monday when the heavens opened up and dumped God's bounty on us. Rivers and lakes of water streaming from the cracks and corners. Never noticed any dampness, my ass. This isn't the first time they've lied about shit.

Ari has decided that school a) starts too early, b) claims too many days of his week, and c) is a lot of work. Therefore, school mornings are "Mr. Grouchypants Time". I'm getting real tired of this.

I was supposed to organize my wreck of a kitchen this week while Ally was in school. Guess that project, along with all the others, will have to wait while I dust off my Florence Nightingale hat, again.Turns out Axle has a pretty nice Nightingale hat, too.  

Friday, April 5, 2013

Family Life

A little update on all that is going on here.

It's getting warmer, praise the heavens, though I'd still expect snow to float down any second.

I can't seem to get my coffee right anymore. Regardless of my actions, it still seems to end up too strong or too weak. This is a bad thing in my world.

My glasses have disappeared. For a week now.

Sascha has been sick. For a week now. After proving to him that he does, in fact, have a fever he's decided not to go into work today. This'll be an interesting experiment in which is more restful...a day at work or a day at home while the kids are on spring break.

A large, male robin keeps throwing himself at the garage windows and our front door. There is bird poop and spit everywhere. I papered over the large windows he first started "fighting" so he wouldn't knock himself out and then he moved on to the side windows. Well determined, delusional little bastard, I'm out of paper.

Our 8 year anniversary was yesterday. We had a sitter but had to cancel since Sascha's been so sick.

Was a good thing we canceled because Ally started throwing up after dinner last night. Happy Anniversary, Babe.

Looks to be a lovely day outside. The rest of us will probably be inside...throwing up.

March 28, 2013

The day our crocuses opened.