26 September 2013

I Used to Be Effie Trinket

I’m kind of dumbstruck that I am getting ready to put that picture on the i-n-t-e-r-n-e-t. Onward.

It took me a little over an hour to get ready for school that morning. I waited to put on the wig until I went through the line of cars at Starbucks. Avoid eye contact. Avoid eye contact. Resist the urge to complete order with, “And may the odds be ever in your favor!”

I almost didn’t go through with the plan because I felt like a first class weirdo. The kids would get to enjoy our new unit whether I dressed this way or not, right? But that little nagging voice which sometimes reminds me I only have this one little chance at life and dares me to make things happen reared its head. Done. I was on my way down I-75, latte in hand and dressed head-to-toe like Effie Trinket, or at least my best version of her. It was the opening day of a Hunger Games unit, which was scheduled to conclude just as the movie would be released to theaters. Brilliant.

From the morning bell until the buses drove away, I spoke like Effie, ate like Effie, lectured like Effie. I mean, I really went for it. Every class heard about how they (the students) had rebelled against the Capitol and would be forced to pick two tributes. We drew from a glass bowl to see who those tributes would be, who would get “stung by a Tracker Jacker” if one of his/her classmates was caught falling asleep while we read the novel. By the end of the day, each student had background knowledge on the book and enthusiasm to begin the story. They were handed “survival packets” with various study guides and projects to complete along the way.

Fast forward to today. I changed ten diapers, almost completed one load of laundry, and should have filled the dishwasher. Just to clarify, this isn’t about being a stay-at-home mom. I chose to be a stay at home mom because I want to be home. I love, love, love that I get to snuggle this little person all day, take naps with her on my chest if I want, and be totally drained at the end of the day because I took care of her each need. These days are sweet indeed. Nope, this isn’t about my life as a mom, it’s about looking for identity in my new daily tasks as well as the desire to create. I imagine this is how anyone would feel with a job transition.

Sometimes I think about my days in the classroom. I smile every time because those kids and the magic that happened was just beautiful. (Of course sometimes I have nightmares about it too though, like the reoccurring nightmare where all my students lay on the floor and refuse to get up the entire day. Ooh makes my palms sweat just thinking about it. Ha.) All this to say, I knew who I was in those four walls. I had a clear purpose and I had a canvas for creativity. I was comfortable, maybe too comfortable.

I guess I’ve been feeling a bit aimless with out my old job, with out being able to say “I am a teacher.” But then I got to thinking that maybe it isn’t the times of mastery and titles where we are most profound, but maybe more so in the times of meandering and seeking. I believe I am made in the image of a Maker, and because of this, something in me wants to get my hands on something I can make. I’m just in the middle of looking for what that might be and taking this season to find my identity/value in simply being the created. I’m grateful for this season. Maybe I just needed a reminder that my life is valuable because I belong, not because of what I make.

22 September 2013

Here's to You, Sugarboo

On Friday night I came across the sweetest treasure of a store and had to share.  Just like many unexpected delights in life, we ran across this gem because of cancelled plans. Andy and I were planning on seeing a movie at the Cinebistro at Town Brookhaven, but to our chagrin ended up being too late to get tickets.  Change of plans.  We still needed to find dinner, so we decided to mosey past some shops to see what restaurants we could find.  Well, one of the  shops we happened to pass was the most precious little slice of heaven. The warm lighting and refinished wood-framed art called us in, and the tiny details kept us there, happily trapped by our discoveries.  The store walls were covered with original pieces of folksy/modern pieces of art with loving phrases and letters that make you think about people you love: your kids, your husby, your dog.  Rebecca Puig is the artist behind all the beautiful pieces as well as the creator of the store. What is this place you ask?! Okay, you ready? With no further ado, I present to you…

(I really hope this isn’t one of those moments when I hear a resounding, "Yeah everyone's heard of that." Fingers crossed I'm not the last to know.) At any rate, check it out and marvel with me. So cute it makes my toes curl!   

This basket of random messages/quotes was one of my favorite details in the store.  Just before leaving, Hubs and I reached in the middle (eyes closed) and picked at random.  We read the cards over sushi.

16 September 2013

THREADS: Peaches + Cream

Hi friends! If you run into me at the grocery store, I'll give you a hundred bucks if I'm not wearing a beat up baseball cap, a t-shirt, and skinny jeans. BUT every now and then I love to get dressed up in my favorite new finds.  And this Summer, this lovely cream maxi skirt was my absolute fave.  Isn't it a dream(sicle)?! I sure think so.  If you want one too, you can find it here. Happy last days of Summer. 

13 September 2013

Letters to M: Mr. Right

Dear little bean,

I guess you won’t be such a little bean when these words apply to the precious life you are living.  They aren’t much help to you in your easy breezy baby days, but I’m writing them to you now because the emotions are fresh and the lessons are remembered.  I recognize that you are your own little person; YOU ARE NOT ME.  So, this may apply to you someday or may not, but in an effort to always give you my very best, I offer you my experience, and the bits of wisdom found therein. 

I could weep just thinking about the day when I see that spark in your eye; the give-away that tells me someone has caught your heart.  And when the thought crosses my mind, I pray.  I pray he knows your value like your dad and I do, like God does.  I pray he knows Jesus and has had to find grace the hard way.  I pray he serves you and makes you laugh so hard it hurts.  I pray he sees into your heart, somehow, someway seeing the sweet baby girl that wants the simple things in life like being held and heard.

And for the part of the deal you decide, may I offer you what I’ve come to learn?

I encourage you to think of boys as friends, not potential boyfriends, husbands, gods etc.  People should be known, not idealized.  Start relationships with the intent to learn about the amazing makeup of another, and love will find you (instead of the other way around). 

Save your kisses as long as you can, and save sex for marriage.  This topic is so hard because now that I’m a mommy I recognize my new enemy, the world, and all the lies it will tell you.  It will tell you to get practice, try it out, get better. It will tell you sex is how you keep the one you want.  It will tell you that is how you show love. I will tell you the truth.  I will tell you that where your body goes, your heart will follow (willingly or not).  I will tell you that sex in marriage is a blessing and fulfilling and wonderful.  Wait. Wait. Wait.

Everyone makes mistakes.  We can’t grasp all the grace available for our downfalls.  Accept it when you make a mistake in relationships.  Offer it as it’s been given to you.

Decide early what characteristics you want in a mate, and don’t settle for anything less.  I’m not talking about hair color; I’m talking about the heart.  Notice how he treats others, especially his mama.  He will treat you that way in twenty years. 

Observe your daddy.  He opens doors for us, helps around the house, finds ways to excite our hearts to learn about God, and gives away his money/things when he sees someone is in need. He cuddles us when we need it and encourages us to DO good and not just DREAM good. Use him as an example of how you should be treated by other men. 

Know your worth. Boys will tell you you're beautiful.  They could say it a million times, and it wouldn't fill your heart as much as hearing it just once from your Creator.  Your worth is found in Him.   

Live yourlife.  Those around you might be meeting “the one” while you have to stand and wait.  Or maybe you’ll meet your sweetheart in elementary school. You might even decide you want to fly solo. Whatever the course, know that it was designed specifically for you and for your good. 

I hope these words offer you some guidance and grace as you embark on meeting the one God chooses for you.  I want to be all your answers, but I know that it’s inevitable that heartbreak will teach you some of them along the way. I wish I could see them all and erase them from your story, but God loves you more, and he withstands our sorrows because he knows they are for our good.  He loves you, so, lastly; trust Him and consult Him about all the matters of your heart.  

Love,  Mommy

09 September 2013

Happy Birthday, Bestie.

Happy 30th Birthday, Ash! It was a beautiful night for a beautiful friend and oh so good to see you SURPRISED!  Love you, sis. 

I love you, sweet man! 

Mission accomplished, Burch! Nice. Yo. Sweet. Whaa, whaa, whaa.