"Do not go where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Quote of the Day

This quote from Jerry and Esther Hicks was in my inbox this morning, and it couldn't have been more timely. It's funny how you can hear the same thing over and over in different words, and it takes that 837th exposure, in exactly the right words, at exactly the right time, for it to really sink it.

Nothing new here, but it spoke to me, and I wanted to share it.

"If you decide to make someone the enemy and you're pushing very hard against them, you don't affect them at all, but you disconnect yourself from the Stream. If someone cheats you, they cannot diminish your experience. They only diminish their experience. You cannot be diminished by someone cheating you unless you get all upset about being cheated and push against them and use that as your excuse to disconnect from the Stream."

Monday, May 17, 2010

Tegan's Zebra

Every night before she goes to sleep, Tegan and I have a conversation that goes something like this:

Me: Goodnight baby. I love you.
T: Yuv you too!
Me: Did you have a good day today?
T: Mm Hmm
Me: What was your favorite part?
T: The animals

Sometimes she specifies animals (a cow is one she mentions a lot, and giraffes and zebras are popular too), whether she has actually seen them that day or not. But her standard answer is always a happy and sleepy "animals." She loves animals, and going to the zoo is one of her all-time favorite things to do. Even when she's been home all day, and the only animal she has seen has been our dog, animals are still the best part of every day. It's as if just knowing that they exist makes her happy.

This past weekend we spent most of the day on Saturday out in the desert... off-roading, geocaching, and picnicking beside a lazy river. On Sunday, we were invited over to our friends' house, and we enjoyed a leisurely dip in their pool, jumped on their trampoline, and enjoyed good food and several hours of conversation and play. It was a lovely weekend, and a fun weekend, and still when Tegan was snuggled up to me, all cozy in her pajamas, her answer was steadfast.

The animals. The zebra. The cow.

I love that she loves animals that much, and I love that they are a bright spot in her day - every day! - whether she has seen any or not. I love that she goes to sleep happy every night, thinking about her animals. I love that no matter what's going on around her, she still has that joy, that wonder, that excitement. Who couldn't stand to take that cue from a two-year old?

I have been stressed out lately. Not stressed really, more like frustrated (and a little sad if I'm being honest) about a situation that I have absolutely no control over. None. I can't control other people being, well, thoughtless and stupid, but I can control my reaction. I can be more like my girl, and I can celebrate animals - or chocolate or flowers or sunshine or any of the other wonderfully simple pleasures in life. I can think about those things even on the not-so-good days, and just forget about the rest.

Today was a Monday. My favorite part was the elephants.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A Human Becoming

by Scott Noelle

In a product-oriented culture, there's a tendency to
"productize" and "package" people. We often forget
that a human being is a living process -- a "human

Children are especially dynamic -- often visibly
different from one day to the next -- and no two
children develop precisely the same way. This can be a
challenge for us when we've been conditioned to "need"
the predictability (read: controllability) of static

Many parent-child struggles can be avoided simply by
allowing children to be different than they were the
previous day, or even the previous minute! A toddler
may "hate" peas at the beginning of the meal and
"love" them by the end of the meal, provided the
parent doesn't pronounce the child a pea-hater
in the interim.

Today, be mindful of the way you talk about your
child. Note that *labels* tend to productize. You can
avoid labels by focusing on the process. For example,
"he's a fussy eater" becomes "he's figuring out his

Especially avoid "always" and "never" statements
like "she *never* brushes her teeth willingly."
Someday she will. :-)


Feel free to forward this message to your friends!
(Please include this paragraph and everything above.)
Copyright (c) 2010 by Scott Noelle

Sunday, May 09, 2010

"The best birthday party ever"

Everett's words to describe his 6th birthday party yesterday. It was an incredibly cool party, filled with friends, neat animals, and deliciously edible dirt. My overwhelming after-party emotion is generally relief... relief that it went well, relief that everyone had a good time, and relief that it's over. But I'm also incredibly thankful for all of the above, as well as for the good health to enjoy it, the almost always cooperative Arizona weather, and the friends and family that gave up their Saturday afternoon so that they could come celebrate with Everett. We are blessed.

And really, all the animals and cake and sunny weather aside, what really matters is that my little boy have a fun day to remember. And he did.

Friday, May 07, 2010

Babies and New Chapters

Our next door neighbors have a six month old little girl. She's perfect and beautiful... big, expressive eyes, happy smile, cheeks that defy you not to squeeze them. She is sweet, easy-going, and curious.

I must admit, I'm actually not the kind of girl that gets all crazy about babies. I'm crazy about my babies, but I was never one of the ones who cooed and gushed and made a spectacle of myself just because I was in the presence of a cute baby. This baby though, she turns me into that kind of girl. She does. She makes me gush.

Which is why I was so surprised by the realization I made when I was lucky enough to babysit her a few days ago. Our friends had gone out to a show, so we had her all evening. We fed her dinner, gave her a bottle, and rocked her to sleep. I was looking at her face, sweet and peaceful as she lay, passed out, in my lap. I always marveled at my babies when they were sleeping. Their perfect little eyelashes, their tiny noses, the way their lips stayed permanently pursed. Yes, it was undeniably wonderful to even hold such a young baby again, as my baby is now a busy and oh-so-active active 30 pound toddler, and it made me fondly nostalgic for all my kids' baby days. She was just a warm and delicious bundle of squish. And yet... instead of an inner voice screaming, “I want another baby!!,” a voice I feared would never be completely silenced, I was met with another voice. Quieter and calmer perhaps, but every bit as absolute, it told me “I’m done.” I don’t want another baby. I feel happy and blessed and complete with our family exactly as it is, and I no longer feel the acute ache of someone “missing” that I felt before we got pregnant with Tegan.
Bidding a definitive farewell to baby days is bittersweet. Those first weeks and months (and years!) go so quickly. So, so quickly! I don’t understand why everyone is in such a rush for their children to grow up, celebrating everything from sleeping through the night to weaning to potty training, as if they’re one step closer to being done parenting. If there is one recurring adage I try to continually live by, particularly when it comes to parenting, it is to embrace the moment… to embrace all the moments. I loved having babies, and I have loved every age since. I love that our family is growing and changing as the kids get older, and I love knowing that it’s bringing new adventures, new discoveries, and yes, even new challenges.
I have been thinking a lot about the future lately, partly to dream and to plan, and partly to satisfy the ever-growing “itch” I’ve been feeling. When the boys were around Tegan’s age, I felt that same itch: it was time to do, to move, to grow. It was time for more. And all three times the answer was another baby.
This time there will be no more babies, and while I was fully prepared for the reality of that truth to make me sad, it does not.
Instead, I feel excited to welcome a new chapter of our lives. I’m excited to be nearing the completion of my Nutritional Consultant certification, and I’m excited to begin the Master Herbalist, the next piece of my Bachelor’s degree. I’m excited about researching a future business, and I’m excited about doing it together, as a family.
I’m excited, and I’m peaceful with what God has currently placed into my heart and into my life. It’s all unfolding, and it’s good. I’ve been reminded lately, in fact as recently as yesterday, that I won’t always receive support from everyone outside my own little 6 member family. In fact, it’s been my general experience that most people – including those who you’d expect to be the most encouraging – go out of their way to deliver nothing more than negative and nay-saying comments when given the opportunity. I will not let others’ negativity affect my life, my joy, or my drive. All I can do is feel sorry for them, and the way they’re limiting their own potential happiness. What a sad way to go through life!
I choose Joy.
i am exactly where i need to be
i need to be exactly where i am
i am a blessing manifest
i can undress the moment
naked time unwinds beneath my mind
and from within i find the kind of beauty
only i can find ~Amy Steinberg

Monday, May 03, 2010

Happy Birthday Everett

May 2nd, 2004:



Last month:

Last night:

Happy, happy birthday Everett. You're still the sweet, beautiful, pure soul you were when you were born six years ago, and we're so blessed and thankful that you're ours.


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