Friday, April 19, 2013

A Day in the Life

Today I:

Got up early to teach a make up lesson. This was the second make up lesson for this particular student because he kept getting canceled for SNOW DAYS. And there was a threat of today being a snow day, too. But it wasn't. So I braved the blizzard and went to campus to teach.

Came back home to my two sleeping beauties. I did not make them get up early for school because it was opening night last night for Fiddler on the Roof (remember how my girls all auditioned?) and they were Tired with a capital T. Bria, on the other hand, went to school on time because she hates missing any school at all and is angry at me when I make her go to orthodontist appointments or stay home because she is hacking up her lungs and has a 103 degree fever.

Got Misses Chloe and Sophia ready for school and drove through the freaking blizzard to be a good parent and get them to school. This is a video taken on campus at the same time I was driving the girls to the school, in case you don't believe me.

Came back home, sat down at my computer to read email, and immediately received an email from the school that the children would be dismissed early due to the freaking blizzard. At least they got to eat lunch at school. And have inside recess.
Blizzard 4 19
The view from my computer this afternoon.

Got some work done while I waited for my girlies to come home from school.

Sent them promptly upstairs to rest up and watch a movie when they got home.

Talked to my mother on the phone for 45 minutes. She's coming to visit next week and is worried since it's the NEVER ENDING WINTER. But she brings the sunshine when she comes, so she HAS to come. The entire Upper Peninsula of Michigan is counting on her!

Braved the blizzard to shovel the driveway. I worked for a 1/2 hour without much progress, and I couldn't get the snow blower to start, so I called Joel crying. He tried to talk me through getting the snow blower to work, but there was no success. I finally got off the phone, sucked it up, and cleared the driveway. I have to say it was heartening to look down the hill and see my neighbor, whose husband is out of town, doing the same thing. We are amazing women! Give us a Yooper Scooper and we can conquer the world.

No, I am not doing research in Antarctica.  Just trying to shovel my driveway in the Yoop during the Never Ending Winter of '13.

Drove the girls down to the university so we could eat dinner there with the Maestro.

Helped my three little actresses get into costume and make-up. I stayed for the show last night, but we had other plans for tonight. Hopefully we don't have to clear too much snow to go pick them up later.
This photo is actually from last night, but they looked about the same tonight.  Aren't they wonderful?

Now, I will go watch a movie with my husband (our original plans for tonight were canceled for weather)(gee, I wonder why?) so he will stop watching news coverage about the Boston Bomber.

Happy Friday!

PS   No obligatory feel sorry for me because I have so much snow photo today. Because, you already do feel sorry for me. And, someone told me on Facebook today that I WIN FOR THE CRAPPIEST WEATHER IN THE WORLD! I am appeased.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

In Which I Feel Sorry for Myself and Think You Should, Too

You all know that I have been having a bit of the winter doldrums lately.  It's inevitable when it's been winter for six months and spring still seems to be an idea someone just made up to make you feel better about the three feet of snow that are still on the ground on April freaking eleventh with a winter storm warning for the next two days that is predicted to bring up to fourteen more inches of heavy snow that will be "difficult to shovel."

(The winter doldrums also cause me to speak in run-on sentences.)

So, naturally, whenever anybody who does not live in my area complains that spring hasn't arrived yet, I get annoyed.  Because I know they've had a few nice days with that thing called sunshine, and I also happen to know they have NO SNOW ON THE GROUND! (Friends in Minnesota and the Dakotas, I am not talking about you.) And whenever I see these complaints come across my Facebook feed I want to type YOU HAVE NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT!  LOOK AT ALL THE SNOW I DEAL WITH!  MY WINTER IS LONGER AND MORE HORRIBLE AND MORE AWFUL THAN YOUR WINTER!  I WIN FOR WORST WINTER!  ME, ME, ME, FEEL SORRY FOR MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

But I don't.  Except sometimes I say something a little snarky, maybe.  And then I feel bad.  Because, really?  Everybody is entitled to put their pouty pants on sometimes.

But I am allowed to wear them more often than you!  Because I have more snow AND I live further away from a temple.

Yeah, that's right.  I live further away from a temple than you do.

So General Conference was last weekend. For those of you who do not share my faith, this is when every six months we all stay home from church and watch a total of eight hours of meetings broadcast from Salt Lake City spread over Saturday and Sunday.  And it is wonderful.  Anyway, one of the things that happens each General Conference is the announcement of new temples to be built.  We all look forward to this announcement with bated breath, because it is so amazing to watch the growth of the church as temples are built all over the world.

Ever since I moved here, I have watched this announcement with even more anticipation than usual because I love the temple and now we are a seven hour drive away from one (or a 45 minute flight).  I always say a little prayer that this will finally be the conference where they announce a temple to be built in Green Bay.  Green Bay is still four hours away, but that would mean two or three temple trips per year instead of just one.

And then they didn't announce a temple in Green Bay.  They announced one in Cedar City instead.

Maybe you know that I used to live in Cedar City.  Which is about an hour away from a temple right now.

And then I started seeing the posts come across my Facebook feed about how exciting the Cedar City Temple news was (and it is!) and about how it will be so very nice not to have to make that excruciatingly long trek down to the St. George temple anymore.  And I had to sit on my hands so I wouldn't type things like YOU HAVE NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT!  LOOK AT HOW FAR AWAY I LIVE FROM A TEMPLE!  MY DRIVE TO A TEMPLE IS LONGER AND MORE HORRIBLE AND MORE AWFUL THAN YOURS IS!  I WIN FOR FURTHEST AWAY FROM A TEMPLE!  ME, ME, ME, FEEL SORRY FOR MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

And then I started listening to my thoughts a little bit.  And I remembered what it was like to live in Cedar City.  I remembered that I lived there for three years, and Joel and I did not make it down to St. George very often for the express purpose of going to the temple.  In fact, we probably made it once a year, and I'm very embarrassed to admit that.

I started realizing that I have no right to judge all those Cedar City residents who are excited to have a temple in their own town.  They deserve a temple.  And it IS a long trek down to St. George.  It wasn't easy for me to make it down there because something else always got in the way.  In some ways, it's easier to have to drive all the way down to Chicago, because we have to make a whole weekend of it and it's a little harder for something to get in the way of that.

So, I decided maybe it was time to take off my pouty pants (they've been on far too long) and realize we all have something to pout about.  And even if my winter is longer than yours and my temple is further away, I'm quite sure you can come up with many things in your life that are more horrible and more awful than they are in mine (maybe even that you have a longer winter and are further from a temple)(because maybe you live in Antarctica).  So pout away!  I will no longer demand that the whole world feel sorry for ME ME ME! 

And then when I start feeling sorry for myself, I'll remember all the great things about living where I live.  Like, now that it's "spring," it stays light until 8:45 pm!  On April freaking eleventh!  I love that!  And when it's summer it's light  until nearly midnight!  MY SUN SETS LATER THAN YOUR SUN DOES!  I WIN FOR MOST LIGHT IN THE SPRING AND SUMMER!  ME, ME, MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

I may feel differently if I wake up tomorrow morning to a snow day, which, according to the weatherman is extremely likely.  But even if it is a snow day tomorrow, I promise not to wear my pouty pants for too long.  Just a few hours, and then I will take them off and find something wonderful about the snow.

My obligatory please feel sorry me because the snow refuses to melt photo.  But you don't have to feel sorry for me for very long, because it was actually really fun to watch the girls enjoying themselves in the snow this afternoon.  At least, it was until Joel came home and said "no more monkeys jumping off the deck!"  And yes, Bria is a true Yooper.  She is also in middle school and dontcha know it's not cool to wear actual coats?  Or gloves?

Monday, April 08, 2013

Carry On Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed

If you are a mom and you participate in Social Media, you have heard of Glennon Doyle Melton.  Unless you were living under a rock (or unless you are one of those people who never click on the posts you see 100 times in your news feed), you most likely read her blog post "Don't Carpe Diem" when it went viral last year.  And you probably loved it.

I did.

It was one of the most validating things I'd ever read on the internet as a mother who is just trying to do her best, but doesn't always enjoy every. single. moment. of parenthood.  Who probably doesn't even enjoy most of them.  I absolutely loved loved LOVED Glennon's thoughts on this.  I love my children.  I adore my children to pieces.  I would do anything for my children.  But.  I don't enjoy many of the things motherhood entails.

Anyway, because I loved that essay so much, I agreed to be on the tour for Glennon's new book: Carry On Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed.  Even though I am trying to wean myself off of book reviews and have done a huge amount of them lately.

And it was so worth it.

I cried a lot during the first part of this book simply because I related so well to her experience.  No, I don't relate to the fact that she is a recovering alcoholic and bulimic.  I relate to her movement through life:  A person who has weaknesses, who is a mother that wants what is best for her children, who is a follower of Christ.  She really thinks a lot about what it means to be a Christian, what it means to be a mother, and what it means to have weaknesses and to lift and help each other.

Which is what the book did for me.  It made me want to be better.  A better Christian.  A better mother.  A better daughter.  A better friend.  A better person--one who lifts and helps instead of judges and shuns.  Someone who makes the world a better place.

If you haven't read her Don't Carpe Diem essay, go read it now.  And then order yourself a book.  Or comment here, because I have one to give away to one of my amazing readers.