Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Morning Affirmation

I now use about half the M&Ms, but this was my first batch and I was excited.

I tend to be very hard on myself, especially in the domestic sphere. I'm not a good housekeeper, and I'm very aware of that fact (though apparently not aware enough to have fixed it yet). But in the midst of my self-criticism, there are moments that make me say, "See, I'm not so bad." These moments affirm, uplift, and encourage me.

Eating homemade granola is my morning affirmation. When I push my spoon into a bowl of granola, I find myself thinking things like this: I'm eating something healthy. I MADE this healthy food. Even the dark chocolate M&Ms will just give me extra endorphins. Those dried blueberries are full of antioxidants. I'm not such a bad housewife. After all, I MADE this. My mom used to make granola. I'm not such a bad mom.

My logic on some of those may be flawed, but on days like today, when my granola container sits empty, I miss it desperately.

What's really funny, though, is that it makes me feel like a better wife and mother even though I'm the only one who eats it. Ryan's body can't handle that much fiber, and Cimorene can't handle the mix of crunchy and chewy.

But it doesn't matter. It still gives me the affirmation I crave. And so I'll keep making it. In fact, I'll go make some now.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

For My Mother (who deserves a creative title, but I can't quite get there right now)

Four generations of women. (And that's Cim, not Mari; they look so much alike!)
As Cim has moved into the toddler stage, I've suddenly discovered new things that I'm grateful to my mother for. Most of these were not from my toddler years, but they're things I never really thought to be grateful for until now.

Thank you, Mom, for telling me "be careful" when I climbed trees, instead of "that's too dangerous."

Thank you for just rolling your eyes and pointing at the shower all the times I came home as a mud-monster. (I remember at least once that I swam in the "bug water" just to see what you'd say when I came home.)

Thank you for letting me ride horses bareback and giving me permission to go in the "bat cave" without you there. I knew you trusted me to be responsible, and so I more often was.

Thank you for letting me go for a bike ride with that teenage boy in Taiwan (I was five, but I was in love, and I day-dreamed about him for years).

Thank you for letting us stay up late to finish the book(s) when Dad read to us.

Thank you for making car trips so much fun with books, the Three D's, and more.

Thank you for having the guts to haul your kids around on big adventures. Museums, national monuments, foreign countries, amusement parks, rock climbing--only now am I realizing just how much energy that took. (And you wonder why you're so tired these days?)

Thank you for teaching me to plane wood and to crochet, to backpack and to watch Pride and Prejudice. Thank you for making my brothers push-mow the lawn, not me. You taught me that a girl could do anything, but didn't always have to, and that it was okay to sometimes expect different things from boys and girls.

Thank you for taking time to develop your own talents, such as attending sewing seminars and doing karate with us. There are times these days that I have to remind myself it's okay to still be my own person as well as a mother.

Thank you for setting the boundaries and then leaving me to explore within them, geographically and behaviorally.

Thank you for providing a childhood that was safe and yet bursting with freedom.

I love you, Mom.