Friday, June 27, 2014

The Day Pizza Rolls Saved My Life

Really this blog could be titled: "The Day(S) Pizza Rolls Saved My  Life"

I believe in balance. I want to do right by my family. But NOT at the expense of my sanity or the peace of my home. The ONLY thing I am an extremist about is NOT being an extremist...

You know those know. Like you sat in a doctor's appointment for your littlest monkey and had to take the other two monkeys with you. 15 snacks, a couple of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse episodes on your phone and 2 toys thrown aside and you are about to lose your mind.  You even resorted to singing and dancing, despite your current attitude. That happened to be when the doctor walked in. Awesome.
Pizza Rolls  for dinner.

OR the day you feel like you are oozing organic-ness through your pores as you excitedly drive out to see your "cow share" cow. You didn't quite realize how far it was. You didn't bring enough snacks. So, on the way home, you go through the Wendy's drive-through with your cooler full of raw milk mocking you from the back seat. 

Maybe you look out the window at your lovely, overgrown, organic garden. You should look at it and smile. Instead you look at it and see more work to do. Is that MORE green beans?! I should be happy about this, right? But all I want to do right now is watch this re-run of Gilmore Girls. 
Pizza Rolls for dinner.

Perhaps, as you are trying to write a blog, your 2nd monkey comes down stairs completely naked, with the exception of the blue Wii remote around his wrist.  If The Professor wasn't making dinner tonight...guess what we would be having?!

I am ALL FOR taking good care of your family. And proper nutrition is important. But sometimes girl, you gotta just pop in some Pizza Rolls and live to fight another day.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Rebel with a Cause

Often when we hear the word "Rebel" or "Rebellious" our thoughts go to a negative place. We think of children exhibiting wild behavior, wearing all black or refusing to get a good, steady job. Depending on your age, when you see the title of this blog, you might think of James Dean in Rebel withOUT a Cause. Great movie. If you've never seen it, you should. I think it's possible he invented being cool.

Well, let's define 'rebel' based on the dictionary:
  1. showing a desire to resist authority, control, or convention.

Hmmm...still think it's a bad thing? I think it sounds amazing. But remember, I have issues. Or perhaps my "issues" aren't "issues" at all. Maybe there is a reason it resides so deep in my heart. 

I've been rebellious as long as I remember. If everyone was doing it, I wanted to do the opposite. If I was "supposed" to do something, it made me REALLY not want to do it. Or if it was something I wasn't supposed to to...well, I might just have to do it cause you told me not to.

In my younger days this caused me to do some really stupid things. Which I will not go into now.  But then I got to thinking why I am this way? Still? I'm an adult. No parental control left over me. So, why is it such a part of who I am? 

There might be a profound purpose other than just to buck the system.

I heard about an interview Roger Hammerstein did about the musical South Pacific. I remember watching South Pacific when I was a kid. Several times. I thought it was great and I loved the music. It was okay-ed by my parents and other adults as good, wholesome family entertainment. Although back then I didn't pick up on the messages in the story. It is largely about racism/ inter-racial marriage and the hardships and life choices made by soldiers oversees during WWII. Because of many of these messages, around the time it was released certain states refused to support it due to it's "liberal message".
Hammerstein was a rebel.

You know what I like? The right to vote. I also like the ability to own land and property.
Think about the women (and men) that spoke out against what was "normal" and ahem..."resisted authority" in the Women's Suffrage movement.
Susan B.Anthony, Elizabeth Stanton and Amelia Bloomer were rebels.

Some of the same rebels from the Women's movement went another step further in breaking away from "convention" and believed people should not be treated differently due to the color of their skin in the Civil Rights movement. 
Martin Luther King Jr. was a rebel.

I know in this day and time these concepts seem so obvious. So normal. But think back to what they had to overcome. Their families, their upbringing. What they had been told their whole lives was right and wrong.

I wonder if I would have had the strength, foresight, and bravery to be a rebel then...

So, to all you fellow rebels out there...let's find our cause. There is a reason it's in you. It is probably an incredible reason. So, let's stop running from it, trying to pretend it isn't there. Let's embrace it and see what happens!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

TO Homeschool or NOT to that really the question?

I understand this is a hot topic button. And there are many emotions that run deep.  But let's take a step back and look at the root of the conflict.  Insecurity.
C'mon, we all have them. I have them. Many. And I know that we all compare ourselves, sometimes subconsciously. 

My inner dialog goes something like this: 
"See, she is a mom but she still has time to paint her nails. You don't paint your nails. What is wrong with you? Sure, do lots of other things...but who cares if your nails aren't painted?!  Why is her house so clean? Your house is NEVER this clean. Wait, she homeschools? Un.believable. You should never have become a parent. In fact, they should make you take a test before you have children to make sure you know what you are doing. Well, it's a good thing they don't have a test... Because you would fail it."

Sound ridiculous? Oh, it is!  I've thought these and many similar things often.  

I have learned and empathized with the fact that we all have them. And give others the benefit of the doubt. I think what upsets and saddens me the most is that grown adults treat each other so savagely, but usually with an air of passive aggressiveness. Trying to sneak in verbal (or non-verbal) "jabs" to make someone else feel bad about their life or decisions. Why does this happen? Insecurity.

Let me say I have never homeschooled a day in my life. But I am a homeschool mom. I read somewhere that you have to call yourself something before anyone else will. After a very stubborn, prayerful, antacid-filled process (3 years to be exact) I have come to a place that I have peace about doing it.  But for the 4 years prior, was peace-filled about public school. 

Peace. It's a beautiful thing. If you can live your life following what gives you peace. I don't believe you can go wrong. 

So what am I saying...Homeschooling is perfect. I'm saying, do what you have peace to do. Do what is right for your family. Private school. Public school. Homeschool. There is no right or wrong. So let's stop treating each other like there is.

Maybe you have a friend that has a newborn baby and decides homeschooling is best for them. Great. Perhaps a stay-at-home mom has to go back to work full time to provide for her family and her kids need to go to public school. Wonderful. Your in-laws tell you they would love to fund your child's private school education. Fantastic. 

Let's err on the side of love. No judgement. No comparisons. Just a bunch of imperfect people following peace.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Jack of No Trades, Master of None

Ever read a article, post, book or watch a movie and think to yourself... I'm going to do that.

Yes, next week I'm going to join a gym. 

I'm going to start eating healthy. In fact, I'm going to empty my pantry of all processed foods and start over.    
I'm going to go back to school and rediscover my passion for (fill in the blank).

And then the next day comes... You stayed up late watching a movie because you had to wait until Monkeys went to bed. Waking up early to pick up a heavy bar above your head doesn't sound so great now. 
You're hungry. Where are those chips??  Oh, right... 
It's going to cost how much money to finish my degree?!?!

Then you know what happens...nothing. I have been there. MAN, have I been there!! 

I blame movies. I mean it can't possibly be our fault, right?! The Movie Montage is the downfall of our culture. 
Here is the definition:
"a technique in film editing in which a series of short shots are edited into a sequence to condense space, time, and information."

The Movie Montage was created in the 80's. (guess what decade I grew up in?)
The first movie to have it? Rocky.
Sylvester Stallone is a flabby, out of shape bruiser, working miserably as hired muscle. Then he gets this incredible opportunity that is going to completely change his life. Then...the music starts. Eye of the Tiger. In the span of a 4 minute and 10 second song, Rocky is transformed into a powerful boxing champion. He drinks a couple eggs, chases a few chickens and before we know if, he runs up a bunch of stairs and is READY to take on the world.

So what do I do? I put my earbuds in and head to the gym. Then, 4 minutes and 10 seconds later I'm done. Right?
So, what do you mean I will have to hit the gym 3x week and change my diet to have the body I want in a...did you say year?!
It's going to take how long to grow a garden full of healthy food for my family to eat?!
I'm going to have to devote how much time to studying?!

Here's what I'm getting at. We expect too much too quickly. I want to find a few things I am really passionate about and then give it my all. My all is sometimes terrible. Sometimes nothing. But I'm not going to give up.

Try this: Start going to the gym 2x (Or 1x!)week and start slow. Cut out ONE unhealthy kind of food in your house if you want to purge your family of processed foods. Then, when everyone has found a new balance: cut out ONE more thing. Go to the library and check out a few books on the subject your passionate about and study them like you are in school. Take your time. Enjoy it.

Don't try to do so much you feel like you've failed.

And if you need to play a little Eye of the Tiger in the background for motivation~ You'll find no judgement here!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

WRECKED Kitchen...Proceed with great caution of either relief or judgement.

Oh yea. 
This is how my kitchen looked this morning. 

And you know what I did while it looked like this? I watched Sesame Street and played "chase" with my Monkey baby.  

Still think I shouldn't feel guilty? Get a load of this...some days when the kitchen looks worse than this, (yup, worse!) while Monkey #3 is napping I read a book. OR watch a show. 

Oh yea, you heard me right.

Because you know what?  It will get there. And because I read that book or watched that show, I DON'T clean the kitchen while muttering profanities under my breath.

See. A crumb and profanity free kitchen. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Mid-Thirties and Disney Movies

This month I turn 35. I'm not afraid of you mid-thirties. 
Okay, maybe just a little. 

I lean on the"happy" side of getting older. It is mostly because of how I feel about myself. If I could go back in  time and give myself advice, it would be, "embrace who you are."  It's okay if nobody else "gets you" or you constantly feel like a black sheep. There is a reason you are who you are. And it is a BEAUTIFUL reason. 

I would also tell myself that straight irons were going to revolutionize our life. Can I get a "Yeeeahhhh!!" from all the curly haired girls???

Okay, so maybe I get spray tans to mask my neon- paleness, and perhaps I use foundation to cover up my ever-pink facial hue. Yes, I do grace the gym with my presence 3x week to get toned arms and my hair has been every color found in nature. And a few not found in nature.
I'm not saying you can't improve some things about yourself if you want. But be sure you are doing it for the right reasons. Not because of fear or pressure from someone else. Do it for yourself. That is the only way it will stick. 

Stop comparing yourself. Seriously. Stop. 
My severe lack of gracefulness will never lead me to be a ballerina. And my genetics and propensity to eat cake has kept me from being a supermodel. But those dancing slippers look WAY uncomfortable and who wants to date Leonardo DiCaprio anyway? 
My 17 year old self would be shocked to hear me say that last sentence (well...the DiCaprio part anyway).

But here is my point. Find beauty in who you are. Don't hide who you are to the world because you are afraid of rejection.  

I refuse to now talk about a certain Disney movie with an Ice Queen. I am in my 30's and get life philosophy from kid movies?? Really?! 
Think about it this way, there is a reason that story resonated in so many hearts. The embrace of self acceptance. And finding beauty in yourself. Most importantly, those 2 elements being the key to unlock the problems in your life. 

I'm not saying this will solve all your problems. But maybe, you will approach life, problems and relationships differently.

Meet me. The Queen of Random: I like werewolves. And vampires. Not the sissy, girly kind of vampires. The darker kinds. I like motor cross and monster truck rallys.  I love to read Jane Austin novels, cry and sigh when the couple gets together. But I can't stand most romantic comedies. gag. I like having long, deep conversations and wearing pants. Dresses are beautiful to look at, but wearing them is a different story. In fact, if you see me in a dress it is either because I feel socially obligated or The Professor has specifically asked.

I have learned to love this crazy person (and believe me, this is only the TIP of the random-iceberg). And find beauty in what she loves. I find this amazing. And what I find more amazing is that I found someone that loves this crazy person with me. The Professor loves me. And I don't hold anything about myself back from him.  

So the question enters my mind... Is it easier for someone else to see the beauty in you AFTER you have seen it in yourself?

But honestly, if NO ONE else sees it in you... that's is okay! See it in yourself. It's there. I promise.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Life Rules and Laundry

Hmmm...some people upon entering a room with a similar view, would have a strong desire to organize! This pile would be put into categories of either color, room it goes into or person it belongs to (*cough! "The Professor"). They would tackle this task with purpose. Some would walk away and find a magazine to read. 
I'm a little of both.

There is a fine line between taking care of what needs to be done and OVER doing it. I am a rebel. I walk this line often and fall onto both sides, depending on the day.  

I don't like rules. They make me mad. Even if they make complete sense and I agree with them. This is just a part of who I am. I have issues, but we will maybe get to that another day.

Here is something that helps me. Like REALLY helps me. I call it my "Life Rules". I will resist the temptation to rebel again my own rules long enough to tell you about them. 

1) Forgive Yourself
2) Focus on the People and Things You Love Most
3) Be Organized and Disciplined Enough to Accomplish Rule #2.
4) If You have Failed at Rule #2 and #3, Please Refer to Rule #1.

So yes, there are days when I have focused on playing with my 3 Monkeys so much that I hear from upstairs, "MOM! I don't have any clean underware!" But I have also had times when cleaning the UNDERside of my kitchen table (yea, I know. Issues.) so long that Monkey #2 comes to me and says, "Mommy, can you come sit with me?" 

Maybe you were going to get up early to do some editing on your latest screenplay, only to be up late with a Monkey who had a bad dream. It's okay. ALL IS NOT LOST.  Forgive yourself. There is always tomorrow. You can do this. You.Can.Do.This.

All the desires in your heart can be fulfilled. They.Can.Be.Fulfilled.

I will leave you with this great quote...
"Don’t miss a great season of your life wishing you had more, complaining about what you can’t do. The real joy in life is in the simple things".  -Joel Osteen

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Welcome to Reluctantville. Population: 1

Hi. So, here's why I am starting (yet another!) blog. I like people. I like helping people. I like to see people living fulfilling, fun lives with the people they love around them. I'm on a quest to find a simple life. Not simple like only owning 2 pairs of shorts, simple. Simple like...focused on what I love. Life is short. We should find the people and things we are passionate about and "focus" on that. But here's the kicker: Life is also loooong. And problems, challenges, issues, etc get in the way of that "focus" we are trying to achieve.

So, here is my contribution. I face all new challenges with RELUCTANCE. And laughter. MUCH laughter. Mostly at myself. When I approach a new "subject" I do so with fear, prayer, antacids, research, denial, more get the idea. The "subject" could be 'How to get that funky smell out of your kitchen towels?"  to "How to Write Your First Screenplay".

Did I mention that I am also the Queen of Random? I am. I'm her.

My last blog was heavy. I mean, we were in Colorado going to school...So if you are into heavy spiritual stuff, check it out.

But that is not what this blog is for. Although, I can't promise I won't throw one in there every now and again. It is just a part of who I am. 

So, I shall hence be named, "Queen of Random" and along with "The Professor" (my husband) and Monkeys #1, #2 & #3 (my 3 sons), I will share our Life Adventures. In the hopes that I will encourage, be encouraged myself,  bring joy and laughter to you, and help you (and me!) realize....anything is possible.