Friday, September 28, 2007

Finding Balance

Soooooo, after I was lulled into a false sense of perfection by summer vacation, school started. I started back to work and all hell broke loose. My wonderfully stacked linen closets are now either empty or ravaged. Dinner does not sing "G. Garvin" melodically, but screams, HAMBURGER HELPER, hoarsely. My 40 minute, morning power walks are now 15 minutes of running up and down the back stairs at work while my students are at recess.

In search of balance? With all we have on our plates, it is difficult to keep the scale from tipping more in one direction than the other. "The other" represents work, children, home, more work, kids,dishes & laundry, soccer practice, grocery shopping etc. The "light" side is YOU. It is unfortunate for those of us that must schedule "me time" either at 11:00 p.m. or 4:30 a.m.! These are the times when the house is quiet and we can do ANY activity quietly and uninterrupted. Is there something wrong with that.?

Sometimes we think we are alone in this quest to balance our lives. To get everything done with a smile and time left over for ourselves is something that occurs between midnight and 5:00 a.m., in our dreams. Coffee keeps us moving, late night re-runs put us to sleep. I don't think this is how it is supposed to be!

You know misery loves company. I just thought that some people had a schedule, had balance and stuck to it. You know, Saturday morning 8 a.m - grocery story, 10 a.m. - laundry, 12 p.m. - park with the kids, on time EVERY DAY. That was my best friend. I listened to her schedule and knew that all I needed was discipline. I could DO IT ALL TOO! Recently, she took on the responsibility of caring for infant twins! HELLOOOOOO, LATE TO WORK!! Now don't get me wrong, I am not gloating in her new found "unbalance". It is just nice to know that I am not lazy, unorganized or unmotivated. It is about the fact that many of us are juggling around the schedules of people we love and/or are responsible for.

I think that the key is kind of like what we are taught about saving money. Deduct your savings FIRST! This insures/assures that you are doing YOU! OUr families are our first priority, however we cannot take care of the kids, family and work if we are raggedy and tired.

Make YOUR you time FIRST! Put it on a calendar, set it up with the nanny, hubby or baby sitter. YOUR TIME! Even if it is just a 30 minute walk, or 20 minutes in a hot bath. Schedule your YOU time, in the midst of the chaos, the baskets of unfolded clothes, kids crying, soccer practice, and dinner cooking, make time for you!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


People...the FDA, media, researchers, companies, etc spend a lot of time, money and energy, identifying, categorizing, labeling and warning people about toxins that are hazardous to our physical and mental health. Television shows and movies have been made about the disastrous effects on children, adults, and whole communities being exposed to various life threatening substances. We scurry around buying anti-bacterial soap, organic produce, testing for lead, making sure we dispose of old paint, cleaners (dirty diapers) and other potentially dangerous household items properly. Recently in my quest to get rid of disgusting feral cats from my yard, I investigated several methods until I found one that wouldn't harm the cats, just get them to go away.

So why is it when we are so cautious about ridding ourselves, homes and neighborhoods of toxic substances do we put up with toxic people?

You know who I'm talking about. These are the people that suck the very life out of us. Usually slowly and painfully. They are people that we encounter on a fairly regular basis. They are probably people that you call, relative, friend or lover and that is why they are still there, like a leech, getting their nourishment from your demise.

Well I say it's time for DETOX!

Who do you have in your life that is there purely for their own benefit? You will recognize this person by their constant complaining. Or maybe it's when they tell you they love you but want you to change everything thing you think, say and do. It's the friend who hates all your other friends, or the lover who questions every single thing you do. It could be the person who is always right while you are always wrong. It is the person that it takes an unnatural amount of energy to be around and when you/they leave, you are both relieved AND exhausted.

For this person that is squashing, stomping out, quelling your joy, enthusiasm, breath, life... get one of those BIG yellow containers that says "HAZARDOUS MATERIALS" and STUFF THEIR BUTT IN IT!

It is time for you to DETOX!

Monday, September 3, 2007

Phenomenal Women

On this eve before the FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL, I just stopped for a moment to think of all you phenomenal women out there. All of you rushing about to get that last load of laundry washed, dinner cooked, dishes washed, babies out of the tub and into bed, lunches packed, backpacks checked, clothes laid out, teeth brushed, faces washed, to do lists checked, groceries put up, emails returned, dogs walked, phones answered, kids tucked in, floor swept, pants pressed, and so it goes.

Whether you work in or out of the home, old job or new (like my friend Joy(ous) and her new principal job) you are probably doing most of this with little (very little in my case :) ) or no help. And yet, you are fabulous, in control,vulnerable, effective and efficient, witty, sexy, loving and wise. You can't be replaced. No, you can't do it all, but all that you do MAH-VA-LOUS-LY!! Here's to you!

Phenomenal Woman
by Maya Angelou

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman

Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
’Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Toddler Symphony Moments

I think it is 100 degrees inside at 9:30 p.m. The window is open, the fan is on and sweat is raining. Sexy huh?! What makes this moment even more pleasant is that I have decided that the twins need to start sleeping in their own beds. (more on the idiocy of family beds...or not, later).

So in addition to mopping myself off every 2 minutes, I am being seranaded by the terrific (not terrible - lmao) twos version of "Happy Feet". Twin #1 is singing very softly over and over and over to Sprout's "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star:" Twin #2 however is ticked off that I am making her stay in her bed so she is doing her version of crying/fussing which sounds so much like Mumble. You know, that half duck, half goose kind of grating, honking noise?! This really is a beautiful mommy moment.

At any rate, maybe I will pop 'Happy Feet' in the DVD, it might cool me off.