Looking back on last year’s blogs there were a number of issues I said I would get back to you on. So, I thought it might be fun to re-read the blogs and see what some of the topics were…
First stop, North Pole! I was hoping to get away with not wrapping any presents this past Christmas. I want it to go on record that I actually asked my kids if we could skip it. I received a resounding no! In what I think was a subconscious response to having to do something I didn’t want to do, I agreed when MacGyver came up with a somewhat devious plan. Our family is comprised of night owls. Over the holidays it wasn’t unusual for all of us to be up until midnight and sleep until ten or eleven in the morning. On Christmas Eve this proved to be a bit of an issue. Santa cannot come until everyone is asleep. So, we watched a movie and then at 11:30, when everyone should be in bed, we climbed in the car to take in all the Christmas lights we had been meaning to appreciate. A very hilarious and unpredictable outcome was that we saw a number of friends scurrying around mostly darkened houses, making sure the treats for Santa had been taken care of. We finally made it home and got our kids tucked in bed. One of our Christmas gifts to our bundles of loveliness were really nice sound systems with a clock. Mac set their alarms to 8:00 am, set the radio to their favorite stations and then set everything up in their rooms once they fell asleep.
Bright and early the next morning I heard confusion and tapping of hands as our kids attempted to turn off their old alarm clocks. Little Mac figured it out first, he is the most alert of the four of us first thing in the morning, and then went to assist his sister. We laid in bed listening to them running between rooms and checking everything out. I have to say I enjoyed getting to lie in bed a few minutes longer and listen to their delight, but not actually having to move. I’m thinking there is a lot to be said for the unwrapped gifts in the pillow case at the bottom of the bed. I'm going to keep working on this.
Moving on to the discussion of the weight loss, I did really well until November and then things kind of fell apart for a few weeks. So, the good news is I only gained four pounds last year. Oops!! I think that was the wrong direction. Okay, the really good news is that I was inspired to try much harder. After a strenuous walk on a crisp and clear winter day with my lovely featherweight friend whose feet seem to float above the ground, I went home and signed up for one year of fitness classes. It isn’t that I don’t work out… I have realized that I need a lot of variety in my life… I need yoga, Zumba, Jillian Michaels, walks, hikes, Jazzercise… all in one week just to keep me motivated!
As for growing old gracefully… I went for the kitchen remodel instead of the eyelid reduction, jowl redistribution, breast augmentation, liposuction reduction, bum reconfiguration. I love my kitchen. It completely suits our family, our taste, our budget, and it is a pleasure to be in. I kind of think of it as an inspirational makeover of sorts. I am growing old gracefully and while my bits are a little more uniquely arranged than they once were, my spirit gets lifted every time I walk in my kitchen. It is a combination of the living in the moment with having perspective. It’s definitely a win-win situation.
This next issue is a part of the whole “Where am I going” subject that I have been working on for the last year. The school play! I loved working with the kids the last couple of years; as I said last year, there is magic in watching the kids discover themselves and forming friendships. I love being part of a big thing. This year a great friend is taking it on and I am helping out just a titch. She’s going to do a fabulous job and I can focus on my book. “Book?” You say! “Yes, book!” I wrote a book and have had several readers take a look at, have submitted it to a variety of literary agents, and have made more revisions and have had more people read it. So, this is the year I throw myself at one of my biggest challenges and I get this book published. I have partially written one more and I really, really, want to work on it. I love to write and so that is what I will do. Wish me loads of luck!! (And when you think about it, my predisposition to a sedentary lifestyle fits in nicely.)
Decorating… that’s my segue. I am back to wanting more color in my life. I went through a phase where I wanted the flowing harmony of white everywhere! It’s clean, it’s crisp, it’s peaceful, and it’s easily re-accented. However, last summer I realized that my soul was dying for some zip, some verve, some woo-hoo. So, off I went to the paint store. It’s been three months since any real work has been done on the house. For those of you who live in houses that don’t have plywood flooring, ancient bathrooms, and ¼” molding, you can take a break. For those of us who are following our dream to fix up a house from stem to stern, three months is recuperation time and then the hammers and paint brushes have to come back out. “We” cannot decide if the next project is replacing the stringers and stairs, building a shed (to free up the garage of all the building materials), or finishing up all the other projects while we save some money up to relocate our closets and remodel our bathrooms. Around here there is always something. So a gallon of paint and a few hours of splashing it around is well worth it. I just want to note that I will not be sending this blog to Mac as he will most certainly take my credit cards away from me if he even hears the words, “What do you think about…”
Speaking of not telling people things… this is the year of talking. Somewhere back in December I mentioned to my therapist that I wanted to drop back to twice a week. She is sly, clever, and really good at her job. Within moments we were discussing something I’ve long since avoided. Anger. I like to use the words conflicted, frustrated, hurt, irritated, sad, but sometimes I am plain old fashioned angry. So this is the year of learning how to discuss my anger. Don’t worry, there will be no rants and vulgarities. I think it is another step on the path to living in the moment. You cannot really live in the moment if you are trying to paint your feelings with words that don’t accurately describe them. So, I am putting the correct words to my feelings. There must be a Barry Manilow song in here somewhere. (As a side note, most of the criticism I’ve received regarding my book is that the conflict isn’t developed well enough. Every time I hear that I chuckle internally.)
That reminds me of a once well-known but now obscure fact about myself. I was once a human juke-box. Tell me a thought/story/feeling, I can tell you a song. This reminds me of two things. I wrote about a song called “Remember When” by Alan Jackson. I later found out that the song was on the soundtrack for the movie “Up.” Couldn’t imagine anything more perfect… Okay, only one thing. Nope! I will mention the other thought, not really sure why I thought I shouldn't, but I have decided to share that I love the song, “I’m gonna love you through it” by Martina McBride. For all of you who are starting to plan for the 3 Day Walk, you must watch the video for this song.
Roll to Me by Del Amitri; I have had many wonderful responses to the blog I wrote about my romance with Mac. I’ve loved hearing your stories. For those of you who’ve shared your hopes of finding such acceptance and support, my hope is that you do too. Just a few nights ago a group of us were sitting around having dinner and a friend asked Mac for his side of the story. He shared his version and admitted to having had strong feelings for me for a long time. It was decided that we were just really “lucky.” For the most part I believe that luck plays a huge part in all things, not being a believer in fate or destiny. I believe that both Mac and I had been pretty kicked around by love (or what we thought love was) and that once we were on solid ground we were willing to take big risks based upon what we knew, not what we hoped for. It is something that we try and teach our children every day.
As for continued thanks, I have many. I am super-de-dooper thankful to have reconnected with my lovely sister-in-law, niece and nephew. They are fabulous and it was a huge mistake to let time slip through our fingers. I'm learning to crochet (thanks to my fabulous niece)! Given my wonky shoulder, I've had to quit knitting and crocheting is filling the gap nicely. I am eternally grateful for my friends, who I am gradually getting to know better. We seem to have broken through some chunks of goo lately and the acceptance has been emotionally overwhelming. As for my family, well, that is impossible to quantify. To paraphrase Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets, “You make me want to be a better woman.” Everything I am and all that I work on is because of my love for Us.
In closing I would like to share my latest favorite You Tube video… check out Emmauel Kelly X Factor Auditions 2011. Imagine…
Thanks for reading.