Saturday, May 30, 2009

saturday 9

I found a new meme that looks like it will make Saturday postings easier. It's Saturday 9. Here's mine.

1. Do you mind people to show up uninvited? Only because my house is usually a mess. If it were clean all the time, I would love unexpected company.

2. Last person you talked to on the phone? My mom, last night.

3. Last person on your missed call list? Robbie

4. Who calls you the most? Denise, maybe. I really don't get called much. I like phone calls, though.

5. What is your favorite song about breaking up? At This Moment by Billy Vera

6. If someone sent you an unexpected gift, what would you like it to be? Sparkly things.

7. Your classic rock station plays the top songs of all time. What is number one? I guess this means in my opinion? But what if my number one isn't classic rock? Or do they want me to research the actual number 1 song on the local classic rock station? Do they mean the genre "classic rock"? Because that's what it sounds like. Or do they mean a rock song that is a classic? Oh my, what if I get this wrong. (Ok, there, I just gave you a little glimpse of how I think, all. the. time. It's painful.) Ok, I'm just going to throw out a favorite "classic rock" song: Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen.

8. Do you live for today or tomorrow? Tomorrow, and I'd like that to change, I think.

9. What movie villain scared you as a kid? Oh man! The child-catcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. *shudder*

Thursday, May 28, 2009

please say no

I remember one of my nursing instructors teaching us how to say 'no'. It comes up a lot in nursing. "Can you please work one more shift? I know you haven't been off in two weeks, but we really need you and you'll get double time."

So, this is what my instructor told us. "Just say 'no'. Don't give an excuse, don't explain, just say 'no'." I didn't know how to say 'no'. It took me years to really learn it. I was/am a people-pleaser and people aren't pleased when you don't do what they want you to, right?

Turns out that unless they are trying to staff a hospital, they don't really mind so much. I have found that people respect people who know their limits. Oh, there are a few who can't take it, but that's their problem, really, not mine. Some people have to learn how to hear 'no'.

But as for saying it? It's not really that hard once you start practicing. Because don't you hate that feeling of having so many things to do that you don't really want to do? Don't you get tired of the resentment you feel toward the people who asked. The truth is, all they did was ask. The resentment is really at yourself for getting sucked in again, right?

So, next time the Sunday School director says, "We really need someone to teach kindergarten next week." And you get a headache just thinking about it, say "No. Thanks for thinking of me. I hope you find someone else."
Next time your neighbor asks you to babysit and you hate babysitting, say, "No."
In fact, I've been pretty blunt and said, "I really don't like babysitting." That probably didn't go over very well. I'm sure they thought everyone should adore spending time with their children.

Just saying 'no', seems so rude. But here's the thing, if you give an excuse, they will counter it. Don't explain.

What about service? What about putting others before ourselves and all that?
If God asks you to teach that class, go for it. If you feel led to babysit, do it.
But if you will be full of anger and resentment, if you will be so overbooked that you don't have time to live your own life, say 'no'.

I've said 'no' to things and had people not respond that well. But they got over it. And I got over it immediately. Having people not be pleased with me turns out to be preferable to all of the yuck I feel when I say 'yes' to something I don't want to do. The relief that comes with 'no' is almost immediate.

Try it.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

things i'm learning

I'm learning it doesn't really matter what my cell phone looks like.

I'm learning the appeal of simplifying.

I'm learning to relax. It's not up to me to keep the world spinning.

I'm learning I may not give my kids enough credit. They surprise me sometimes and I shouldn't be surprised.

I'm learning to long for Heaven so that I can be with Jesus, rather than longing for it just so I can be somewhere better than here.

I'm learning how much Jesus really does love me.

I'm learning to love people because God loves them.

I'm learning that nobody expects me to be perfect except me.

I'm learning that failure is always an option. Eek. Ok, maybe not. But I want to.

I'm learning that even though I've said things for a long time it doesn't mean I've really believed it.

I'm learning that other sins really are no worse than mine. We all make bad choices, some just seem more acceptable than others. They aren't.

I'm learning that love = sacrifice. Not in the martyr complex, codependent way. In the Jesus way.

I'm learning that I need to get off my own back. Next, I need to learn how.

Monday, May 25, 2009

thank you

Today we remember our soldiers who gave their lives for freedom. The following numbers represent those who died in action, the best I could determine.

First World War/ The War to End All Wars: 117,000
Second World War: 292,000
Korea: 33,629
Vietnam: 58,226
The Gulf War: 148
Enduring Freedom: 456
Iraqi Freedom: 3, 430

This does not necessarily include those who died from wounds, died as POW, or died from accidents or illness while serving.

Friday, May 22, 2009

another meaningless post

I don't know why I have been so dry lately. I just don't know what to blog about.
If anyone has any suggestions I would love to hear them!
I'm not intentionally abandoning this. I've just got blog block.

So for today, something I found on Facebook.

65 Questions You've Probably Never Been Asked

1. First thing you wash in the shower? My face

2. What color is your favorite hoodie? My only hoodie

3. Would you kiss the last person you kissed again? Absolutely!

4. Do you plan outfits? Sometimes

5. How are you feeling RIGHT now? Mellow

6. Whats the closest thing to you that's red? My shirt

7. Tell me about the last dream you remember having? I can't remember the last dream I can remember

8. Did you meet anybody new today? No

9. What are you craving right now? Sleep

10. Do you floss? Nope, I live on the wild side. I laugh in the face of death... and dental disease.

11. What comes to mind when I say cabbage? Belching

12. Are you emotional? from time to time

13. Have you ever counted to 1,000? 835...what? Oh man, now I have to start over! I seriously doubt if I have ever counted to 1,000

14. Do you bite into your ice cream or just lick it? A little bit of both

15. Do you like your hair? I like my hair. I don't particularly like the style right now, I'm planning a new one, I think.

16. Do you like yourself? Yes, I do, actually.

17. Would you go out to eat with George W. Bush? Of course.

18. What are you listening to right now? My kids getting ready for bed.

20. Would you go sky diving? No. Most certainly not. Never. Not on your life.

21. Do you like cottage cheese? On May 24th, on leap years, or something like that.

22. Have you ever met a celebrity? Depends on how you define celebrity. But I would say yes.

23. Do you rent movies often? not really

24. Is there anything sparkly in the room you're in? My plastic tiara. My flip-flops. My ring.

25. How many countries have you visited? Two, besides this one.

26. Have you made a prank phone call? Not since I was a kid.

27. Ever been on a train? Yes.

28. Brown or white eggs? I don't care.

29. Do you have a cell phone? Yes, I dislike it.

30. Do you use chap stick? Nope. Gross. I use Burt's Bees.

31. Do you own a gun? No

32. Can you use chopsticks? Yes.

33. Who are you going to be with tonight? My husband and kids.

34. Are you too forgiving? Mostly

35. Ever been in love? Yes, of course

36. What is your best friend doing tomorrow? I don't know. I am not my best friends' keeper

37. Ever have cream puffs? Oh yes. I love them when they are done right.

38. Last time you cried? Probably yesterday. I don't remember crying today, so probably yesterday.

39. What was the last question you asked? Is it bed time?

40. Favorite time of the year? Fall, from when it very first creeps into the air all the way until...well, through Winter, actually.

41. Last TV show you watched? AFV, although I wasn't really watching.

42. Are you sarcastic? Who? Me?

43. Have you ever seen The Butterfly Effect? No, but it intrigues me.

44. Ever walked into a wall? Ha ha ha. No. Good thing it didn't say pole.

45. Favorite color? Red

46. Ever slapped someone? Yes.

47. Is your hair curly? No, and I'm sad about it.

48. What was the last CD you bought? I think it was a Michael Talbot CD that I don't listen to

49. Do looks matter? yes, but not really

50. Could you ever forgive a cheater? Yes

51. Is your phone bill sky high? No.

52. Do you like your life right now? Yes

53. Do you sleep with the TV on? We don't have one in our room, but sometimes I fall asleep on the couch for a nap with it on.

54. Can you handle the truth? Yes, I can handle the truth...eventually.

55. Do you have good vision? Yes, but increasingly less so

56. Do you hate or dislike more than 3 people? I don't hate anyone. I can't think of anyone I dislike, although some people bug me.

57. How often do you talk on the phone? Not real often. Maybe 2-3 times a day.

58. Do you text a lot? Not at all

59. What are you wearing? Jeans, a red t-shirt, and flip-flops

60. What is your favorite animal? Elephant

61. Where was your default picture taken at? My parents' house

62. Can you hula hoop? Nope

63. Do you have a job? Not so's you'd notice.

64. What was the most recent thing you bought? Hamburger

65. Have you ever crawled through a window? Once when I was a wee lass

Play along if you want. Otherwise you are free!

Friday, May 15, 2009

friday fill-ins

1. If we had no winter _spring would be meaningless____.

2. _Life is____ a perpetual astonishment.

3. If I had my life to live over _I would probably do it the same way, unless I was able to retain all of my memories from this time around to help me____.

4. _ I sleep____ inside of four and twenty hours.

5. If you've never been thrilled _you must live in a box____.

6. To be interested in the changing seasons _is normal____.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to _one-on-one time with my boy___, tomorrow my plans include _haven't thought that far ahead___ and Sunday, I want to _try a new church____!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

mama memories

Mom and grandma sitting on the patio snapping beans. Grandma says "Aw, sh--" and mom says, "Mom!"
Mom telling me that I can color a cow purple and the sky green if I want to.
Mom letting a baby calf suck her finger.
Mom taking my sis and me to the mountains to draw.
Mom taking my sis and me to the mountains to look at the fall aspens.
Dad driving on a dirt road on some mountain and me saying, "I'm hungry," and mom saying, "There's a McDonalds just around the next curve."
Mom wearing a scary mask to Halloween events and nobody knowing who she was.
Mom making gravy at Thanksgiving because I pretend I don't know how.
Mom giving me pain medicine in a shot glass when I had my tonsils out. (I was 24, it was legal)
Mom teaching me to look at clouds.
Mom kneeling with us to pray for my daddy in a scary storm.
Mom taking us to church over and over and over again.
Mom and grandma canning apples and tomatoes.
Mom loving people who have been forgotten.
Mom helping people who need it without hesitation.

Thanks mom. You've taught me a lot and you've taught me well.
I love you.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

poet shmoet

Every year for his birthday agent Chip MacGregor has a bad poetry contest. I entered. Twice. Because I'm so good at being bad. Well, you know what I mean.

If you want to read more really awful poetry, go ahead. Enter, too, if you want.

Poem #1

my heart is heavy
weighed down like it has a big boulder from Rocky Mountain National Park on it
It pulls me down into a pit of sorrow and sadness
like a well full of tears and sadness
The sun is shining like a super bright star
but in my heart
it is black
like darkness without the sun

Someday I will once again
walk in the brightness
of happiness
I will walk like a girl who is happy
like a girl with ballet slippers on her feet
and I will think only of love and joy
rainbows and kittens

Someday when my precious boy stops puking.

Poem #2

The most magical thing I ere did see
sat upon grandma's console TV
Mesmerized I'd watch with stars in my eyes
as the lava collided and shattered
and sighed
A symbol of life illumined before me
of love, and peace,
friendship and harmony
as globules of stuff to each other would cling
and soar through the universe upon fiery wing
Then conflict would come and the globs
they would part, each seeking it's own
with despondent heart.
But peace would call forth
and each gooey clump
would reach for another
and another and anon
until love reigned in lava land
and still I looked on
longing with all that was in my wee heart
to one day own such a lavish piece of art.

FYI, my son does seem to be better after a week of not being.

And the prize in the contest is a lava lamp.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

catching up

Taking that break from blogging really got me out of the habit. I've noticed that several of the blogs I read have really slowed down, too. I look forward to seeing some posts there, so you all get going or I'll call you by name.

Here's my news. Tomorrow and all of the month of May you can read a story of mine in the Christian Fiction Online Magazine. It's called Last Chance Cook. If you go to the tab that says Brilliant you will find the short stories.

Also, a story of mine will be in a book released in June. I even get paid for this one! My first payment for writing! The book is Chicken Soup for the Soul: Tough Times Tough People. This story is called Lifeline of Hope.

The Christian Fiction Online Magazine also accepted a second story from me that will be in the September issue.