Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Because I Just CAN'T Be The Only Person Not Talking About It....

By now it's probably safe to assume that everyone has seen Miley Cyrus's little bit of crazy from the VMA's, no?  Yep, I think so.  If you haven't seen it, I guarantee you've at least heard comments, criticisms, our outright hostility toward her for her 'lapse' as a 'good role model' for little girls.

What the what?

The last one is what gets me the most.  People are upset because that is behavior unbecoming of a role model to little girls.  Lets look at the definition of role model, shall we?

role model
a person regarded by others, esp younger people, as a good example to follow
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003

Why, as a parent, would you (general you) perpetuate the idea to your child that an entertainer is a good and/or appropriate role model?  Sure, I can see kids seeing her on TV and listening to her music and thinking "I want to be like her."  But you know what?  It's our job as parents to make sure they understand that they don't know her.  What they see is a character, no more 'real' than Scooby Doo.  It is OK to derive entertainment from her, and enjoy what she has to offer, but aspiring to be like her when you don't know her, or what she's about, isn't a good idea.

Miley Cyrus is an entertainer, and she has her own agenda - that agenda does not include making sure your kids have appropriate role models.  That is YOUR job.  YOURS.  So now you know a little bit more about what she's about... move on.  Help your kids find a solid role model they can relate to - preferably someone they know or at least have a chance to get to know.

If I'm being honest, my first thought when I saw that clip was not "OMG.  What a terrible role model!"  It was "Oh lord.  This needs to stop.  Another Disney girl, on the downward spiral... next stop, rehab."  I was actually worried about her, and wondering if she was going to be the next Lindsay Lohan, or take the same trip to Crazyville as Britney Spears a few years ago.  It's just sad.  I actually really hope this was a calculated ploy to take her career in a new direction, and not the beginning of another very public, very bad, crash and burn.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

I Choose To Be Flattered

This afternoon (after a grocery store run, with both kids in tow) I was sitting at a stop light with the windows (of my minivan) down, unabashedly singing along with the radio when I notice movement to the left...

I stopped singing and looked over at the car next to me, where a guy (boy, really, if you want to get technical) was looking at me... he smiled sincerely and calmly and said "You are gorgeous".  "I just want you to know you are gorgeous."  He didn't laugh, snicker, or anything....

To say I was dumbfounded would be the understatement of the year.

I don't often get compliments like that, and so to get one from a stranger at a stoplight stopped me in my tracks.  I didn't know what to say.  I was embarrassed, and acutely aware that he heard me belting out Rick Astley, and thought about the implications...

A kid, not much past 18.
A middle-aged woman, with a pulled back 'Mom-do'.
A minivan.
Rick. Effing. Astley.

He was making fun of me, it was the only answer.  That, or his friend dared him to say it to the next person at a stoplight... something.

I was embarrassed, probably turned about 17 shades of red, and mumbled "Right.  OK.  Thanks!" and looked away in a hurry.  I was kind of angry.  I was in a great mood, and this little punk was going to ruin it with his misplaced idea of a joke?!

Then I thought "He didn't laugh.  He didn't snicker.  He looked sincere.  WTF, does he have some sort of deviant cougar fetish?"  THE NERVE!

Finally, FINALLY the thought came to me that maybe he was sincere.  Maybe.
I usually only ever get 'cute' as a compliment, but maybe he was serious.

I was in a great mood.
I was wearing flattering clothes.
I was smiling.
I was happy and singing unabashedly.
I am generally kind of cute.

In the end, I choose to be flattered.  I choose to think that 'That little punk' really did have nice thoughts about me - that perhaps my happiness and general sense of well-being maybe made me more attractive than usual.  :)

Yeah.  I choose to be flattered, and think the best of him, and his intentions.  :)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

It's Summer Break, And My Voice Is Worn Out.

Ugh, I am hoarse this morning.
And I wasn't at a concert last night, nor did I give a speech to a packed auditorium without aid of a microphone.  I haven't taken up pig calling, I didn't drink Jack Daniels and smoke all night, and I didn't embark on a new career as an opera singer.

No, I am hoarse for one simple reason:  I have kids.
I have kids, and I've already said "Leave your sister ALONE!" 74,000 times, this morning alone.

I've also said "Get OFF her!", "Stop screaming!", "Eat your food!" and "Settle down, or you're going to your room!" more times than should be humanly possible in two hours.

Dear God.
There's not enough coffee in the world today.  Is it time to go back to school, yet?  Mama needs a BREAK. You know it's bad when scrubbing the toilets seems like a break just as long as you can do it in sweet, sweet SILENCE.

I enjoy summer very much, and I love these little buggers fiercely... but holy hell, days like today, I envy working mothers an awful lot!  Coffee and a three-hour meeting?  Yes, please!  Business trip?  Hell yeah!  Tedious, mind-numbing work?  If it's quiet, sign me UP!

Summer vacation is kind of a laughable concept for mothers.  VACATION?  Ha, not for us!  The kids are home, actively destroying the house for the better part of three months... and when they aren't doing that, their tireless refrain goes something like "I'm BOOOORED.  What can we DOOOO?  Can we go somewhere?"

And then... then, there is the family vacation, which goes a little something like this:
Mom Spends Beach Vacation Assuming All Household Chores In Closer Proximity To Ocean

Now, I have to say that while the above is very true, there is the fact that while at the beach I almost never hear "I'm BOOORED!"  So, there is that - it's a nice break to not have to constantly entertain the kids - the waves, sand, shells and animals do a pretty good job of that.

But honestly?  The closest to a real vacation I'm going to get is in November - we are headed out on a cruise back to the Bahamas for Thanksgiving break.  Thanks to the child care on the ship, the restaurants, and the cleaning crew, my work is minimal and my days fairly relaxed. Ahhhh.  I cannot wait!

Until then, I'm going to need to stock up on throat lozenges and tea.  My poor throat!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Breakfast In Bed

When a day starts out well, no matter what happens, you feel a happy little glow for the rest of the day.  Well, today started out really well!  :)

I was awakened at JUST the right time (8:45) by a little voice next to my bed telling me that she (Ella) had gotten up early and made breakfast just for me!  She disappears and comes back a minute later bearing a plate with golden buttered toast (she took great care not to burn it) and a big old mug of my favorite coffee.  She disappeared again, and came back with my favorite creamer!

Now, how can you beat that?!

What a sweetheart.  Everything was absolutely perfect.  :)  She was thoughtful, careful, and it was a fantastic little surprise. ♥

There is no love more pure and without reservation than the love your child has for you, and how much she really wanted to please me and take care of me made my heart swell.  I am lucky, and it is all worth it.

Monday, August 5, 2013

My Wish

Such a great song.  I haven't really listened to them much before, but the lyrics are just beautiful.  :)

I hope that days come easy and moments pass slow,

And each road leads you where you want to go,
And if you're faced with a choice, and you have to choose,
I hope you choose the one that means the most to you.
And if one door opens to another door closed,
I hope you keep on walkin' till you find the window,
If it's cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile,

But more than anything, more than anything,
My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it,
To your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,
You never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,
Yeah, this, is my wish.

I hope you never look back, but ya never forget,
All the ones who love you, in the place you left,
I hope you always forgive, and you never regret,
And you help somebody every chance you get,
Oh, you find God's grace, in every mistake,
And you always give more than you take.

Oh More than anything, Yeah, and more than anything,
My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it,
To your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,
You never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,
Yeah, this, is my wish.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Myrtle Beach

July sure went by in a blur.  Busy, busy, busy!

My baby girl (actually my oldest, but still my baby) turned nine in July, and we got to spend the week of her birthday celebrating at Myrtle Beach.  :)

It's been 1.5 weeks since the trip, and I keep meaning to put up some photos, but I have been on a massive cleaning/organizing spree since we got back.  Our lovely little beach condo was so organized, so neat, and so easy to take care of that I have been determined to GET RID OF JUNK and emulate that in my own home.  I have been a purging/organizing machine!

But, back to the fun stuff.  :D
The girls can swim well now, and aren't nearly as in need of hand-holding as usual on the beach, and they had a blast!  They got boogie boards and had a fantastic time on them all week!


We went to Medieval Times for the first time while we were there, too... bought the souvenir picture, but I didn't take any with my own camera.  That was great fun!  The kids ate like champs, loved the show, and my oldest was so enamored with our knight - especially after he presented her with a flower.  She said he was 'so handsome' and was quite disappointed when he didn't win the joust!

For the Birthday Girl's big day we did quite a bit, too!
She is a lover of all things weird, so our first stop was Ripley's Believe it or Not!

After that, we hit Ripley's Aquarium, and oohed and ahhed over the sharks, the jellyfish, the stingrays, and ate very overpriced snacks.  LOL!  We ended the day with all-you-can-eat crab legs (her choice, DEFINITELY not mine - yuck).

The next day my girls and I went parasailing together!  Man, was THAT a blast!  I was surprised that they both did it without the slightest twinge of fear - I love having adventurous kids!  There are no pictures, unfortunately, but it was definitely not something we'll forget!  :D

Toward the end of the week, we went out at night and tried our hand at crabbing... the last night we were there, the kids and dad came back with a 5 gallon bucket FULL of the little buggers!  Whoa.

I was sad to say goodbye, as always.  I am a beach bum at heart, and on the sand in front of one of God's most magnificent creations is my favorite place to be!  (Plus, the fantastic tan I ended up with is no bad perk, either!)  I'm already looking forward to my next visit....  :)