...random experiences, observations and thoughts of my daily life as mommy...past journeys and dreams of journeys yet to be taken creating my life story as i go...

Saturday, September 13, 2014

mini-mid-life crisis, focusing on what matters, connecting...chapter 4

this photos was taken on story and sea's first day of 1st and 4th grade.

it has been a year and nearly a month since i last wrote. in some ways i've continued writing in my head, random journals, e-mails, facebook, etc. but it isn't the same. there are many reasons i stopped writing, but i'm not analyzing those for this post. i woke up this morning nearly jumping out of bed needing to write. i had gone to bed next to sea who was crying (and trying to hide her tears, chin up and smile/laugh through it). i had told her it was alright to be sad, her tears were telling her something and i wanted to hear what she was upset about. but she felt like she needed to be strong, in control, above sadness and maybe even be happy for me (one of my childhood issues i had hoped to not pass on to her). she doesn't want me and my m to leave on a trip to berkeley (conference for him) this next weekend and just wanted to "be with me". i have mixed feelings about being needed...independence versus independence...these have been life-long struggles and i think they both are important but in this moment i was alright she felt dependent and wanted to snuggle her 9-year-old body on top of my lap. doing so i realized just how big she has gotten. by big i mean "growing up" and not size, though i realize they go hand in hand. my son on the other hand had been like me with regards to the departure of my parents "can you stay away an extra day?" he was looking forward to the adventure and socializing with mimi, auntie and cousins.

so back to my daughter since this was where my focus was going to bed. we hadn't gotten resolution on her feelings and what we were going to "do" though she got some comfort with the idea maybe they could go ice skating while we were gone. we went to bed with me hugging her and not trying to offer a quick fix. i had been reading J.D. Salinger's daughter Margaret's memoir "Dream Catcher" and over-relating with some of the crazy things from her childhood...mainly the way she dealt with her feelings and slow development of her identity and being true to herself through her desire to please her dad and be a "good girl". the struggle for perfection and the shame of not measuring up...sea had been excited to write a narrative for school..."the adventures across the mountains" in the vein of chronicles of narnia and the hobbit with more fantasy thrown in than i was attracted to at her age (or maybe because i wasn't exposed to it?). i was excited her teacher mr. l, who is very passionate about teaching and looks at his students as his family, had told her he would teach only writing if he could. sea has always loved telling stories through her drawings and reading stories but i've always hoped she would also share my love for writing. not even what she produces, just the experience of writing being part of who you are, something you are compelled to do but brings you great joy/meaning/answers questions...i'm not sure what it does but it is something i must do to be true to myself and i wanted to share this with my daughter at some point. i've been trying to let her be who she is without the pressures of what i hope for her. this writing is all over the place. good thing it is just an un-read blog where i get my ideas down :)

the point i was trying to get at is when i went to bed last night i was thinking about my role as sea's mom, my own experiences of childhood, what i wanted for her and her childhood, lessons of life she could take beyond this incident...and in the back of my head were the ideas about sea loving to write (and missing writing myself) and relating with the memoir i was reading right up until i was too exhausted to stay up any more. so when i woke up this morning i HAD to write. i'm still not clear that i have anything in particular to say, but i've missed this part of myself so much i need to rearrange my other priorities to make it nearer to the top. i also woke up with the idea that sea is almost grown up...not an adult, but almost to the point where she will look to her friends and people outside of me and her dad for answers. she will try to differentiate herself from us and not want to sit on my lap and cry because she will miss me. so i'm on the horizon of a new chapter in our lives.

i was thinking about the mini-mid-life crisis i've been having over the last few months and though i don't want to go into that here (not enough has been resolved...i keep adding more variables in!), i'm sure that will be important blog material if i do allow myself to write more frequently. one of the variables is my struggle with narcissism...from my childhood, in myself, in my husband's childhood, etc. and how not having your own childhood needs met means you limit the childhood your children get become overly focused on oneself. i've had a life long struggle with being someone who genuinely loves helping others, giving of myself quite unselfishly, having a "good heart" as my husband calls it...usually this gets me praise and appreciation and i can find myself through the reactions of others but as a mom and wife over the past few years i realize this giving can mean taking from those you care the most about. not balancing what matters in the pursuit of giving and doing more. so recently i've gotten much better at saying no. and not only being ok with it but HAPPY about it as a sign of mental health and good for the people i'm turning down, too. i tell them i will help them find someone instead of being that someone :) i haven't fully resolved how to be true to myself and my genuinely giving nature while focusing on my number one priority of my husband and children. this will be a huge theme in the near future.

even as i typed that last idea i was aware that subtracted me from my daughter. she is an old soul who thinks about big, existential issues and has a certain confidence she got from both myself and her dad...i'm just worried it is a false confidence and i want her to truly know who she is and be that, not who she thinks we want her to be. i haven't been a very good role model on this. so i feel like i need to fix myself (again, to be perfect) to show her how to be but really more than that i want to show her we all struggle and it is more about HOW you struggle, how you deal with the negative, pain, hurt, sadness and use it to learn something and be true to yourself instead of shutting down, cutting off the pain, trying to be good, perfect, etc. i want to be real with her and show her all sides of myself including the floundering and show her how i get through. i want to connect with her while i do this so she knows i not only have her back, but really want to know HER and be be there through her experiences. i want her to share her secrets and fears with me. i want to listen to her stories both imaginative and real. i want to BE THERE not only being physically present but actively involved and PRESENT, feeling what she is feeling and how i feel in response.

this is getting too psychological and abstract. one positive change i've made in my life recently is exercising more. i feel like i need to get off this computer and go "quick walking" as i call it...nearly as fast as i jog but without the bounce and strain on my joints. i've found i need to go at least 20 minutes, shoot for 30 and if i get 40 it is the golden number for me (back to OCD issues and trying to control things--not sure what this perfect number means really).

i usually try to end an idea by "wrapping it up". i don't really have a wrap up for these ideas and real life mommy, wife, daughter, individual issues i've been struggling with. it is a process. but i suppose i'll try to have a goal instead. i titled this "chapter 4" because i look at my childhood (adolescence, college age and early adulthood) as chapter 1...finding and being ok with who i am...chapter 2 would be my relationship with m and being ok with being connected to someone(these issues are still spilling in to the present chapter)...chapter 3 would be figuring out my role as mom staying home with my children...so i suppose now that they are both in school i am on to chapter 4...i'm not sure what that chapter holds but i'm terming it a "mini-mid-life crisis" because i have to throw a lot out, resolve things i've held on to that don't work, demons i haven't faced, integrating and overcoming my weaknesses, allowing myself to be more vulnerable and real, focus on what really matters and connect...these are just a few of the ideas in my head before i head off to go on a fast walk. i suppose this post is more of an introduction to what will be than adding on to the end of what is. it feels like i should start a new blog. one that doesn't focus on myself like "mommy's journey" does. but ultimately this is my story. that is the nature of a blog. i can bring other in through what i share and how i connect, but it is still told through my experience. maybe my walk will help me clarify what i'm searching for in chapter 4.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

the last couple weeks of summer

i posted this top photo on facebook with the caption "love giving my children the gift of boredom"...this really has been one of my goals for the summer...to have as few plans/schedule as possible and to allow my children to find their natural rhythm playing with each other, creating, time outdoors, climbing trees, riding bikes, drawing, reading, etc. i love the peacefulness i feel imagining my daughter creating a story under the olive tree next to the pond in our back yard...she found this space on her own when she was bored.

story has been riding his bike out in the front yard a lot this summer. he just gears up with his helmet and heads out the door...
i adore this photo of him...it captures his smile and innocence coupled with his creation of a bug habitat....
a few days ago his super wiggly tooth finally fell out (he was afraid to touch it unlike sea who wiggled and yanked until she pulled out most of her own teeth)...this was the point where i realized he is growing up and "big" instead of my little preschooler...
just over 2 weeks left of summer before they are both off to school...i'm reminiscing about the years of cooperative preschool we experienced together...getting ready to offer advice to someone looking to create their own preschool and missing those days myself but blessed by the place we are at in our life and trying to appreciate each stage as it comes...here sea and story wanted to walk home from our community pool down the street...love their carefree bliss as they skip along beside my car...
as usual we have spent many days at the beach this summer...la jolla shores to be exact...love the orange glasses and spontaneous lean over to hug her brother...
i've been writing many many posts in my head throughout the summer but never seem to have the energy or time or mental space to sit down and write about these ideas...so photos will suffice for now...i'll end with sea with her habitat for the lizard she caught out of her room...off to the park...me to get exercise and let the kids run free :)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

sea is 8...

 i woke up early with hopes of writing about this point in her life...our lives...but am rushing to get ready to go out of town for our 10 year anniversary...more to come :)

Friday, July 12, 2013

dreams...senses and weaving meaning through memories

 "gingky" holding me holding my newborn sister marci

i've been "writing" so many blog posts in my head...and then life gets in the way and i've been choosing to experience these things instead of write about them. i'm still having trouble balancing living in the moment and appreciating what is and having to "capture" it through words or photos. so in some ways it has been a good thing for me that i've been blogging so much less because i've been appreciating experiencing these things instead.

this morning i woke up from a very vivid dream. i had just been climbing on my tile roof (identical to the roof of the apartment we rented when we first moved to san diego) looking at my neighbor's fruit trees with peaches and oranges (just went to farmer's market last night and was imagining planting these in our yard). down below i saw a little white doggy (same as gingky's yesterday) and remembered i was watching him (symbol of responsibilities i'm forgetting to fulfill) and he needed to go to the bathroom (my children requested this several times yesterday at inopportune moments). next scene i was opening the front door of my house and both doors swung open...really big inviting doors welcoming me (my sister marci is looking for a house to buy in redlands and last night i was looking at some houses with her and imagining what qualities i would look for in a home if we were to buy again)...i was excited to talk to manuel about something (miss not being with him and sharing my day to day thoughts and experiences) and i could hear the children happily chatting about something with each other and with him...(these sensations/observations are a constant in our home in the morning...i always look forward to their happy chatter and excitement to start their day)

as i tried to stay asleep to see what i was going to say or what was going to happen, i could feel myself coming in and out of sleep and realized it was due to the sensations i was experiencing around me...most notably the sunshine streaming through my window. i miss this way of waking up! as much as our house has a lot of light and windows, it doesn't have DIRECT light streaming through. next i was listening to the birds chirp and sing in the tree outside my window and of course the far off train i forgot to listen for but find as a comforting reminder of my dad's ever-present memory. a large hawk called out a cry and flew over...the sprinklers burst on and sprayed their steady stream over my mom's yard. i wanted to ignore all this and find out what was going to happen in my dream but then i realized this was sort of a metaphor to my life...waiting to "find out or analyze" what will/could happen in my life versus just making it happen. so i popped out of bed, observed my swollen eye lids (my body disagreeing, saying i really need better/more sleep) and ran down to write about this.

i am visiting my mom in the home i was born and raised in until i left for college at 18. i came out because a neighbor we grew up with, dear "oma" her German nickname, had passed away and i wanted to attend the memorial. i wanted to do it for her because she was such a wonderful woman and close friend of our family for so many years but i also wanted to see her daughter "gingky" (what i called her when i was too young to pronounce her name linda) and because it was something i felt i needed to do on a gut level i couldn't fully explain. yesterday my sister watched my children and my mom and i attended. it was a touching service complete with lots of biographical details that were fascinating, music that made me cry, a slideshow depicting her throughout her life with photos i remember seeing hung on the walls in her home and memories i was a part of in their pool and in their living room. the most difficult part was listening to gingky share her personal memories and how her mom touched her. i imagined how i felt sharing these things about my dad and how i will someday feel sharing them about my mom. on top of this i had my own memories of gingky's mom and what a gentle, loving, dedicated wife/mom/friend she was. it was strange to observe this intimate personal tribute to a woman i haven't been in touch with for over a decade yet she has been a part of my life and my childhood memories weave in and out of gingky's at some point.

gingky's youngest daughter is headed off to college. of course this got me thinking about my own youngest headed off to kindergarten in the fall. how time moves so quickly it will be seconds before my children move on. last night sea wanted to sleep with me...specifically she wanted me to hug and cuddle with her and she wasn't tired and wanted me to tell her stories so she could fall asleep and i was super grumpy because story had just fallen asleep and she woke him up trying to negotiate these things. i didn't handle this request well and even though i went to sleep with sea after story fell back asleep and we had some "resolution' of sorts i want to feel like my daughter can count on me to be there for her more often than not. and i want to get over my own self-absorbed "needs" and put her first more often because i know it is just a matter of time before she doesn't "need" me so much.

i'm trying to wrap up this blog post so i can move on with my day...my cousin katie is coloring my hair shortly and i have things to take care of. in the grand scheme of things, looking over the life of a dear friend yesterday, for example, this seems trivial and like i should take a few more minutes to end this blog post with meaningful, touching words that pay my respect and hold onto memories. but that is part of the tragedy of loss...when people you love die they are yanked out of the daily stuff and memories only get to come in and out as time and mental space allows. i think i will visit my dad's grave today, just to offer him a little bit of that time and space for reflection and memories. and i will remember to listen for the trains. and squeeze sea and story a little tighter tonight without them asking.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

spring rambles

 grr...almost two months since i last wrote a blog entry and i had hoped to "blog more regularly"...life, family, drama, cross roads, various excuses but really i miss writing so much i need to make the time for it instead of hoping the rest will come together and there will be time left over. this top photo was taken at my friend kim's annual easter egg hunt/brunch. we have another photo taken in this same spot from two years ago and story's hair is only to his shoulders and, well, sea is about story's age. i try to slow them down but they get older and bigger faster than i can capture or appreciate their ages. i remember last year wanting to blog about sea getting ready to enter 1st grade...then our summer...entering second and now she is almost DONE with second and i haven't written any of these things down. i've still been taking photos and done a much better job experiencing the moment and slowing down my own thoughts (trying to be less self-absorbed/selfish) and just appreciating what is in the moment. i keep having these ideals or dreams of waking up early with the perfect cup of coffee and no one needing anything and just writing all the thoughts that keep spinning around or get tangled in my dreams.  but instead i sleep in or wake up too tired or wake up with too many things already on my plate and the writing ideal goes out the window.

so here we are on a saturday night. sea has a friend over and they are watching a movie. manuel is taking a nap. story is having his second sleep over at another friend's house. i fed the children homemade split pea soup and grilled cheese sandwiches and i'm enjoying a glass of red wine as i type. i had a bunch of ideas in my head yesterday or the day before and was trying to untangle them so i could write a cohesive blog post. i often feel, when i start typing after such a long hiatus, like i need to have something really important to say or well thought out or well put together. but if i'm going to be true to myself and my style of writing, i tend to ramble and hope the ideas eventually link together.

today i wrote an e-mail to a professor who was most influential to me in graduate school. i wished him happy birthday and told him a little bit about my current life and how i'm thinking about going back to teaching within the next year or so. specifically i shared with him how i'm at a cross roads of sorts...story, my youngest, will start kindergarten in the fall. i am holding off on submitting any applications until i know how he adjusts to school (he's never been in preschool) and i suppose equally as important in my hesitancy to go back to work is wanting to be as involved as room parent, in the classroom, teaching art, going on field trips, etc. part of me is excited about the opportunity to have more free time...i hope to use it gardening, exercising (or at least doing yoga), reading, blogging, making photo albums of the children, etc. though i really SHOULD use it finally cleaning out the garage, going through to accumulated "stuff" i no longer use or need, paperwork, etc....hopefully some combination of the two.

so i feel like i should really be maximizing this last time home alone with story. i'm not sure what that means or what he will most remember or appreciate about our time alone together. i also feel like i need to really listen to sea right now and connect with her while she still wants to connect with me. she is getting to an age where she is much more independent and analyzing things on deeper independent levels and doesn't "need" me as much. it is funny how i want us to be closer when she seems fine alone and i feel like i need space when she is more clingy and wants to snuggle in my lap. today she sat on my lap in church and she felt big and it was awkward and an uncomfortable angle but i immediately thought how i may not get many more of these spontaneous times together when she wants to sit in my lap so i squeezed her and smelled her hair while we sang hymns together.

today we went to our community pool. we go there pretty much any day manuel is home from work early enough and any weekend it isn't quite warm enough to go to the beach. the photo below was taken later in the day on easter after the brunch photo above:
i love this pool. it has an old feel to it (established 50 years ago and has some of the same equipment or feel of the 60's) and many of the members have had their membership passed down through family members; most member live in our neighborhood. so it has this feel like it has been around forever and always will be...very familiar and an integral part of our lives. also great exercise for the kids, wonderful sun for all of us, relaxing, etc.

today at the pool i decided i would finally put some books on book shelves in the app goodreads which is a cool social sight where you can see what other friends are reading and post what you have read, want to read, etc. i listed anne lamott (one of my all time favorite authors...she is funny and sincere and believable and likable and also happens to be both spiritual and very hippyish in her lifestyle/political beliefs which doesn't often coincide). then i listed billy coffey whose books i haven't read...my connection to him is i was commenting on a blog about some religious topic and i happened to read a comment by billy right above mine...i appreciated his perspective and the way he wrote his response so i clicked his name and started following him on his blog. i must have thought of him right after anne because they both write about religion (along with a lot of introspective/philosophical/humanistic observations on life in general). then i remembered one of my good friends, tanya, was also an author and i hadn't listed her books. as i was listing these, i looked up from my relaxing lounging position at the pool to see margaret dilloway, whose daughter is in my daughter's class at school. we worked together to create a basket of advanced reader copy books for the school's auction (i should say she did all the work getting the books from her publisher and friends and i just met her for coffee to talk about it!) anyway, it was weird to be listing authors i'd like to read and then see one looking down at me...so i listed her two books (i have bought one and keep meaning to make the time to read it). finally, i listed alfie kohn who has by far been the most influential writer on my parenting philosophy (he gave words to ideas i couldn't quite explain to others when i was intuitively dealing with my children and focused more on "big picture" outcomes than what was happening in the moment).

i'm really not feeling like writing right now...probably because i have a full hour and a half "free" and i usually feel most like writing at like 3 a.m. when i wake up with too many ideas in my head to sleep or something impractical like that. a friend on facebook once wrote how the difference between amateurs and professionals is the professionals don't need to have an inspirational moment to produce fine work (he was referring specifically to music) but i think that is true for writing, too...i don't HAVE to write anything meaningful or at a professional level at this point so when i no longer feel like it i can just stop.

i do feel guilty it has been too long since i last wrote and wish i had more in me...maybe after a hot bath and i put on some snuggly clothes...

thanks for allowing me to free associate...

Friday, February 15, 2013

happy 40+ birthday to me!

"i am ready to blog again...will edit this post later but wanted to get in a february 15th entry after more than 6 months...off to bed..." i wrote that last night right before going to bed...a quick commitment to blog again and i said "i'm ready" before i really was sure that i was...i've been wanting to write a post about this "in between" place that i've been...but i will save that for another day...for now, i just wanted a quick hello and update about the present...

i turned 41 yesterday. not a milestone birthday and it felt no different than any other except it was nearly 75 degrees outside and i'm always whining about rain on my birthday...and i was noticeably free of melancholy and drama...it felt nice to just appreciate what is. i even woke up with energy and ready to pick up my surroundings and appreciate a clean environment to start our day (normally i struggle with feeling these are chores that take away from something more important but on my birthday they somehow felt important and necessary and not that big of a deal). i enjoyed a kona coffee latte, did some yard work and enjoyed the feel of the soil in my fingers and sun on my back. we dog sat percy (a friend and neighbor's dog) and watched him chase and play with our dog kyra for awhile. then we spent an hour at the swap meet, watched a "space" IMAX and finished our day with a yummy thai meal that ended with this mango and sweet sticky rice dessert (sea had pulled our server aside and asked her to bring her mommy a surprise birthday dessert!)

i am just grateful for what is and hope i can return to writing soon.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

reflections on art, research, mommyhood and individuals

it is 6:30 a.m. on a sunday. i should not be up. i did not want to be up. but we co-sleep and my children and dog and cat were all competing for who went where and i found myself unable to go back to sleep. maybe it is because i have a lot on my mind. have had a lot on my mind. things i'm working through and trying to figure out...about myself, my family, my place in my world. i don't think my blog concept is that unique and wish i had a better blog title but really "mommy's journey" pretty well describes what this blog is about. when i started thinking about blogging i was really conflicted about my role as a stay-at-home mom. i didn't know any role models, felt part of my identity was tied up to making a difference as a teacher and was worried i would miss the process of learning and keeping my mind engaged with adults at the college level. really i think one of the bigger issues (perhaps a life long issue for me) was balancing dependence and independence. i've always prided myself in being so independent and not "needing" others yet i am so social and enjoy people...on my depressive down days i wish i didn't push myself away and could allow myself more dependence...in fact, i didn't even see the value of dependence until i met my husband...and then again when i had children i was glad they wanted to be dependent on me more than i wanted to foster independence in them (which i think comes naturally when you feel secure)...

anyway, i digress...i really wanted to write about art...so i'll start with a photo from last year's art show at sea's school. i led the "famous artist" lesson and chose monet's sailboats for at least a few reasons 1) my dad loved sailboats and they remind me of him 2) monet was one of my favorite artists as a child 3) sea loves the water and i wanted to see her paint a sailboat

most of the children in her class went with the traditional blues/greens/turquoise with white accents for their primary colors but true to sea's individual nature (and love for the color) she went with an orange sky and an orange sailboat. i love this about her. she can trust herself and go with what she sees or imagines without following the masses (at least artistically!)

this next picture was taken at last year's family art night at sea's school. i have taken over the art corps coordinator position for the school so i will be in charge of this event next year...here is sea giving a "thumb's up" which also reminds me of my dad (he used to do this both to encourage us growing up and also to say "right on!" when he was happy like sea is doing here)...

i met with one of the co-founders of the art corps program (they are professional artists who come to sea's school and lead workshops to teach parents age appropriate art lessons that build on one another...they teach a concept about art and tie it into famous art work so the children are learning both and then get to try to concept on their own art once a month...the parents take the workshop and then teach the lesson in their child's classroom...i taught most of the kindergarten and 1st grade lessons in sea's class and loved it!). i'm really excited to be the face of this program on campus. it will be my job to  get families excited about art at the school...i will do this with a booth at the ice cream social before school, the 1st day of school, the first open house and then have an art corps orientation where people can learn more about art. then i need to be sure there are enough parent volunteers both to lead and assist all the lessons in all the classes...advertise and sign people up for two family art nights sponsored by the PTA, and organize matting of one piece of art per 500+ children in the school for the art show at the end of the year. this is a very parent involved school which is good in many senses but difficult when they have competing agendas for what is most important. i'm hoping to convince them art should be one of the top priorities at the school...one way i am hoping to go about this is to look up research showing how art helps children in school...both academically (they care about things like test scores and grades that are not high priorities to me) and psychologically and personally just how art enriches people's lives (more important to me).

i came from a very academic background growing up (there was a well known medical school, dental school, physical therapy, nursing, etc. in our community where many of the parents worked and these occupations were definitely encouraged over anything artistic). i've always loved art. even when i got a "c" in it in 3rd grade and decided i wasn't very "good" at art i still loved it. i remember taking some personality test in middle school where they asked what type of people you would most want to hang out with at a party and i always chose artistic types as my number one choice even though most of my friends were social people types (my 2nd choice) and i fancied myself a nerdy analytical thinking type (3rd choice).

it is hard to balance the contrasting sides of myself...i love the author anne lamott both because she is really funny and an awesome writer, but more importantly for me because i can relate with her feeling drawn to very liberal and out of the box things yet feeling God and spirituality are equally important (there aren't too many of my hippy type friends who embrace the importance of God in their life...most of them are atheists)...she writes a lot of autobiographical material i can also relate with on her own journeys as a mother...she has a attachment parenting style like mine that i can also relate with...

wow, this post is all over the place. i originally felt motivated by writing about art...yesterday i attended a baby shower for a mom of one of sea's "students"...we became friends last year...she was always really involved at the school and showing up with personalized artistic gifts and homemade cupcakes for various holidays throughout the year. on top of our personal connection of caring about our children and both being involved in the classroom, she is an accomplished artist. our children have the same birthday. i'm not sure how much astrology weighs into everything but they are both leos (july 23rd birthday) close to the watery sign of cancer so they have a strong willed side but are also artistic...

anyway, i met one of her friends who is also an accomplished artist and we were talking about the difficulties with being a mommy and balancing this with other things we are passionate about or just wanting to get away sometimes. i totally get that! i've been reflecting on that idea since i spoke with her. i think i have finally come to a place in my life where i can give up parts of myself to embrace other parts. and i don't feel like i have to give them up forever. my children are 4 and 7. my youngest only has one year left with me before he is off to school and i will have a lot more free time. i want to embrace these unscheduled days of playing with blocks, reading books, making "maps" (he just recently got into making his own art), riding bikes, running in the grass and chasing and/or trying to fly kites. i have a lot of analytical and "deeper" ideas inside of me but right now, at this place in my life, i need to embrace the simpler experiential "moments" of my life...

this rambling is bordering on incoherent so i will end this post shortly and head back to my mommy duties including cleaning out the car of all sandy beach gear, making breakfast, wrapping birthday presents and packing to head out of town to a cousin's party...

but i wanted to include the idea of research (this idea isn't as out of the blue as it sounds...i was reading about research on education on a homeschool group e-mail this morning in bed)...looking at who you influence...groups or individuals...i studied psychology in college and graduate school...pre-kids i loved research and wanted to read and conduct my own to try and "prove" or at least show the probabilities for various things. when i was a teacher i liked that i was influencing many people every semester and i imagined life on a more global scale and how i could influence groups of people. now that i am a stay-at-home mom, my life is much simpler and my world is much smaller. but this is a good thing. i am more concerned with how i influence my children and the impact on the individual (myself and my family) versus groups.

in a different time and place my focus may be elsewhere (though i doubt i will ever give up the importance of my influence on my children...and their influence on me)...but for now i am happy where i am, doing what i am on this mommy journey...