Friday, November 22, 2013

7 Quick Takes

1. This morning, the wheels came off the bus, and not one of my children made it anywhere on time.  But the day and the mood was saved, by the premature advent (forgive the pun) of 24-7 Christmas carols on the radio,which soothed the psyches of 7 of the 8 people bothered by the passage of time.   "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year..."  They sang it and meant it and you know what, so did I.

2. There is something about two year olds that can only be explained thusly: she has a lollipop in each hand. Neither is unwrapped.  She is dancing on her tippy-toes. "They're mine. They're mine! They're Mine!" she sings.   All is right with the world.  

3. My kids know Saint Anthony and I have a connection. Part of what made us late this morning was the inability of one child to find her folder.  She was fast becoming unglued by this reality despite my reassurances the teacher would understand.  She said a prayer aloud asking my favorite go to saint for help. I added my own and I promise you the instant we finished, we found the folder.  We'd searched all the rooms more than once but here it was.  She gave a big smile and thank you to the Saint, and I sat there feeling like sometimes, these little trials are to teach the bigger people (like me) not to be such a snob with prayer, not to save it only for special occasions or big stuff.  This was big stuff to her, and thus to me, but the prayers were for little things.  

4.  30 Day Novel Writing

I'm in an online course learning all the mistakes I made as part of the writing process of The Book of Helen, hoping not to make them with The Book of Penelope.  Thus far, I've sold 35 books on Amazon that I know of, (installed the counter a week late).  I don't know how she did on Barnes and Noble or Apple or Museitup.  I do know, I'm applying to be a speaker at the Gaithersburg Book Festival and trying to hold onto that "You wrote a book" feeling, which so many authors talk about fading fast when the sales aren't reaffirming of the reality.  Writing a story isn't so much an ego trip as it is an ego offering, and it's hard to not feel it personally when a review reveals all the flaws, because human nature is we want the equivalent of an "A" in this experience.

5.  Day 9 No Laptop.

You have to worry when it takes Geek Squad more than a week to assess.  I miss my computer.

6.    Favorite moment this week so far...there are three.

1) My two year old and 5 year old sitting on my lap for story time and announcing it as such.
2) My teen saying "I love you." through a closed door when I went upstairs to turn off lights.
3) My daughter coming to announce, she's finished her college application common ap.  

7) Twenty years into parenting, I finally have come to know, that the only thing that separates this vocation from being a thankless joyless job, is love.  Parenting, being in a family is much more a willful act than I ever knew.  Getting down on the floor to play instead of turning on the tv? A willful act.  Giving a bath rather than just trussing them up for bed? A willful act.  Preparing a meal rather than ordering pizza?  A willful act.  None of the opposites I listed are innately evil, but they can become a reflexive response rather than a treat that isn't an escape from the tasks we've been called by God to do, namely to love these people unconditionally, and teach them the means by which they can do the same to others, all while giving instruction on how to survive the needs and cares of this world and make it less sharp around the edges.   As such, I now wish all of you a good weekend, I have to go fix lunch.  

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