Thursday, June 24, 2010

It's Just Not Working Anymore

I want a divorce from the dog.

I've fallen out of love.

I don't know if it's me or if it's him.  It's just not working any more.  He's pooping in the living room.  He nips at Colin's feet.  He still chews anything he can get.  He barks to go out, then he barks to come back in.

Maybe he's bored.  Maybe he's lonely.  Maybe he needs obedience training.

I don't know.  It's not that I want another dog.  I just want out of my relationship with this one.

I'll stay with him for the sake of the children, but as so as they're gone, that's it.  I want my freedom.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

My Frontier

I have a small computer problem.  Do you remember when I started the cartoon farm and could not leave it?  Remember how I made Brent set up a laptop all along our trip to Florida so I could harvest my crops?  Yeah, I abandoned that with a crop of potatoes rotting in the ground.

For a while I tried a cartoon island.  I had to go hopping around other cartoon islands looking for buried treasure.  I never quite took to it.  There was something slot machine-esque about it.  You could dig for hours and come up with nothing.

One day last week while digging for buried cartoon treasure I saw there was a new game.  It's a cartoon homestead.  Loved it immediately.  There was land to clear.  Cartoon snakes to clobber with my cartoon shovel.  A cabin to build.  Loved it!  Loved it!

Problem was it was so new no one else was playing and you need cartoon neighbors to advance.  I had to convince my friends and loved ones to play.  Soon Brent had a cartoon homestead and now the Old Children have ones.  Cyberspace Sarah is scaring off bears by shouting a tiny cartoon, "Hey! Hey!"  If I didn't know how sad it would be I would set up an account for Preschooler D.

hmmmm . . . sad or resourceful?

. . . Maybe I should try reading a book.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Poem for Tuesday

Today's poem is actually a Lyle Lovett song I think my husband appreciates (I don't know.  I've never asked him) particularly for the final verse.

In My Own Mind
Lyle Lovett

I get up in the mornin'
I drink a cup of coffee
I look out of the window
I try to get a-started
I turn it all over
Plough it all under
I plant 'em in the spring time
I pick 'em in the summer

I live in my own mind
Ain't nothin' but a good time
No rain, just the sunshine
Out here in my own mind
I live where I can breathe
Ain't nothin' but a cool breeze
Nobody that it won't please
Out here where you can breathe

Mandy and Dary
They'll show back up any day
That's one thing you can count on
But sometimes they'll be long gone
I'd rather be huntin'
Hooked on fishin'
I read it on the t-shirts
But if you don't believe it

I live in my own mind
Ain't nothin' but a good time
No rain, just the sunshine
Out here in my own mind
I live where I can breathe
Ain't nothin' but a cool breeze
Nobody that it won't please
Out here where you can breathe

Hardwood floor-a-creakin'
Bedroom door squeekin'
She's standing in the kitchen
I thought she was still sleepin'
Kiss her on the forehead
Ask her how she slept
She says, "Honey it's so early.
We probably shouldn't speak yet."

Monday, June 21, 2010

Old Children

If you have small children and you don't also have adult aged children (AC), I would highly recommend getting some.  I don't know how you're going to go about this.  Adoption maybe.  I upgraded when I got married and got the deluxe package -- one of each.  Sure there was a waiting process while they became adults, but it was totally worth it. Plus, now one of them is getting married and so there's a bonus adult kid! Nice!

I mention this because Big Daddy Brent's Father's Day gift suggestion was a night out with a date -- I just assumed he meant me.  I approached the AC thinking this would be a nice (and free) gift for them to provide.  They were more than willing!  They were excited!  They were prepared!  I mean how cool is that? Cool.

The AC live in Fargo-Moorhead and so we had dinner at the Hotel Donaldson which is not a bad way to spend an evening.  In fact, there are several lovely options in downtown Fargo, North Dakota.  Now, I know what you're thinking but "Romantic Downtown Fargo" is not an oxymoron.  I have been places.  I have seen things.  I'm telling you, you could do much, much worse for date night.  Especially when your children are safe with their siblings.

Yes, you definitely need to get yourself some old children.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Oh-ho the Wells Fargo Wagon!

Is it just me or do we all get a little Music Man-nish when we spot the Fed Ex or UPS truck in the neighborhood? My boys fell over themselves just now when they saw the Fed Ex guy bounding up the sidewalk only to discover . . . alas . . . it was a 9x13 portable casserole.

Could that have been more depressing?!

HA-HA! Not for me! Look! I'm going to tote hot baked goods!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

At the Bottom of the Cup

Colin is at summer rec. D has gone to Grandma's. I finished my Bible Study homework in a timely manner. I'm all caught up in my new cartoon Facebook obsession -- cartoon frontier homestead. There was nothing else to do but write something smart, pithy, clever for you. Coffee cup in hand I sat down.

And stared at the screen.

And read other blogs for inspiration.

And racked my brain for cute stories from D.

And . . . nothing . . .

Now, I am at the bottom of my coffee cup. I could make another. I might very well make another, but I am done trying to say something smart. It's not even Writer's Block Friday yet. So while I move on with my life, why don't you go over and read the smart, pithy, clever and -- may I say -- honest blog of my little friend and excellent coffee barista Amanda: Here Comes the Sun.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Poem for Tuesday

I don't think today's poem needs much of an introduction. I think we've all been there.

Eighteen Flavors
Shel Silverstein

Eighteen luscious, scrumptious flavors
Chocolate, lime and cherry,
Coffee, pumpkin, fudge banana
Caramel cream and boysenberry.
Rocky road and toasted almond,
Butterscotch, vanilla dip,
Butter brickle, apple ripple,
Coconut and espresso chip,
Brandy peach and lemon custard,
Each scoop lovely, smooth and round,
Tallest ice-cream cone in town,
Lying there (sniff) on the ground.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Night of the Very Long Lunch

Howard Mohr wrote a book several years ago titled How to Talk Minnesotan. There really is not better guide to getting along in our state. There is a chapter about how to eat in Minnesota. You see -- at least out here in rural Minnesota -- if you are offered food any time of day besides breakfast or supper, it's called "lunch." I don't know what to tell you. It's not a snack, really. It's a small meal. You find "lunch" at auctions, piano recitals, ladies meetings and the most famous, of course, "funeral lunch" after a funeral.

One of the side bars in Mohr's book addresses high school graduation. He calls it the "night of the long lunch." This is what Brent and I did Saturday. Four graduations. Four graduation "lunches." We started off smart -- light breakfast, one coffee. We had a strategy. We would just eat a few small bites at each . . . but then we got there and something happened. We ate and ate and ate. I talked to a pastor friend who was looking a little green on his seventh graduation lunch at one point in the afternoon and he said, "I wasn't going to eat a thing, but then you get there and everyone has worked so hard and everything looks so good and they are expecting you to eat."

We tried to cope. At first I eschewed the buns. I just ate ham and pulled pork on the side. I think in the end I was glad because I can't imagine how awful I would have felt if I hadn't. One friend I met along the way said she'd been scraping the frosting off the pieces of graduation cake. We all tried to do the best we could, but I am guessing there were a lot of Tums consumed in Central Minnesota on Saturday.

And, I'm afraid, we lost -- well -- our appetite, if you will, for graduation parties this year. If yours is another time, we wish you well. It doesn't mean we don't love you.

We just can't.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Next Day

My mother has just called worried about me. I'm fine today. It would be a lovely world if we never got our feelings hurt, wouldn't it? It would be an even lovelier world if we didn't set out to do things to bring attention to ourselves and then get mad when it didn't work out the way we planned.


I'm just telling the truth on myself. Sometimes I roll out of the king-size bed. Sometimes I let my children get in bed with me. Sometimes I make plans starring me and discover I'm not the star. Sometimes I get my feelings hurt.

I think you do too, or we wouldn't be blog friends.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Riding Bike

I'd picked out a song for an event and gave it to the event planner through an email. I was going to sing it. It was going to be an anthem for a movement. I was really excited. I was going to get a lot of glory for this. At the very least the event planner was going to say thank you.

My email was never acknowledged. I figured it got lost.

Tonight I discovered someone else is singing the song I picked out.

I went and got on my new bike.

As soon as I started, I knew where I was going. It's a resort about 5K from my house. It's a resort at the bottom of a hill. I would show them. I would coast down to that resort, turn around and bike my little heart up that hill. I would find victory in getting to the top of that stupid hill.

I biked and biked and biked. I coasted down the hill to the resort, and I turned around ready to face my Goliath of a hill.

I chanted a little blue engine type chant. I biked and biked and biked. I kept looking up, ready to get to the challenging part of the hill . . . but before I knew it, I was at the top looking back on the road I traveled to get to what I thought was the big Goliath hill.

And I realized, the road was a long slope uphill. I had done the hard part of my bike ride before I even got to that downhill section. That little ride up from the resort was really nothing compared to what I had done to get out there.

I know that there is a life lesson somewhere in there, but I am still too mad and too tired to realize what it is.

I'm pretty sure I will discover that life has very little to do with what I plan.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A Poem for Tuesday

It's a poem set to music today. Enjoy my talented friend Mariah on the right. She has been my rock and roll mentor since taking up the bass guitar. She's 15, I think.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The King Bed

A few years ago when Big Daddy and I had to buy a new mattress, we briefly toyed with the idea of a king size. We have small nightly visitors. I know you know what I am talking about. Like me, when you're together with the parent-friends you make loud self-righteous statements against the "family bed." You claim that your children always go to sleep in their own beds.

Sure they do. Of course they do. They go to sleep in their own beds, but at some point over the course of the night they wander into yours.  With the first few kids you sigh mournfully and get up and drag them back to their own beds.  When you get to kid number four, you sigh mournfully and roll over.  Tell me I'm wrong.

That's how I wake up in the morning.  I am clinging to the edge of the bed with one kid in my back, one kid poking my feet with toenails that need cutting, and a dog across the whole lot.

So you can see my secret delight when booking my hotel for Camp Catalyst, I booked a king room -- for my little ol' lonely self. Oh, yes, I did. In my vision, I woke up in the morning having 9-10 hours of uninterrupted sleep as I spread each and every limb over the entire width of that bed.

The first night I woke up clutching the edge of bed, like normal.

The second night I -- I don't know what to tell you -- I rolled out of the king bed.  I think I just kept rolling thinking I would run into a kid.

The third night -- the third night I just didn't sleep at all.  I think I was overloaded with information from Camp Catalyst.  I think I'd been drinking too much coffee.  I think I was excited to see a long-time friend the next day.  I think I was lonely in the big bed.

Back home Sunday morning I woke up clinging to the edge of the bed with one kid in my back and another kid poking my feet with toenails that need cutting, and a dog across the whole thing.

I hadn't slept so well in a long, long time.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Off to Summer Camp

I don't think I've told you that the church that Brent and I go to is planting a new church. We've had many people ask, "What's wrong? What happened?" Well, nothing. It's a big church and it's ready to expand. A whole new church is the direction they have decided to take.

Brent was asked to help get the music ministry of the new church going. He was born to do this job. I will take the job as his Chief Executive Assistant. I'm pretty sure this mostly means I will be filing the music in file folders, but it also means I am the one headed to the church planting training seminar the next few days. I like to call it Camp Catalyst after the name of the new church. (Now, look. I am trying to be gracious about the name, so please don't ask me why it's called Catalyst. I don't know, but isn't it fun? *forced smile*)

Here is my homework for the seminar:
Really and truly, it is slightly less dull and depressing than it looks.

Anyway . . . what is it about being a stay at home mom that completely screws up your ability to think like a rational adult? I will be gone two days, but in my mind I am abandoning my family for all eternity. Will they be able to fix themselves dinner? What if they have a clothes washing emergency? What if they can't find something?

Oh, please. My husband is a better homemaker than I am. They are going to be fine. I think the real issue is what about that little voice within me going, "FREE! FREE! I'M FREE! Two WHOLE Days! I'M FREE!"