“And the day came when  the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to bloom.”  Anais Nin

I came to a sudden realization this morning that I haven’t seen or spoken to my sister at all in over a year, my brother in over two years.  My reaction wasn’t one of surprise or sadness, really just more matter of fact.

My family is, for lack of a better word, bizarre.  On my mother’s side there is a lot of mental illness and addiction problems, and on my father’s side, more addiction and Latin stubbornness.  My parents are both the more anti social ones of the bunch, and are happy to stay at home and gripe about the world around them.  They are happy to have close family over, but never stray far from home themselves.  I can count on one hand the number of times my mom has been to our new home, and on the same hand, I can count the number of times my dad has ever been to this home or our last one.

When my paternal grandmother was alive, she would have everyone gather together for parties and holidays.  Everyone was welcome, everyone was family.  Friends, neighbors, people she just met, all were welcome in her home and each one loved and respected the same.  Her home was a happy one, filled with joy and love.  When her husband, my grandfather died, the get togethers were designated to different homes, sometimes my parents, sometimes different uncles, but it was never the same.  My parents complained when extra people showed up, if they weren’t immediate family, they had no business being there.  I never understood this.  As the years went by, the gatherings got smaller and smaller until it was just my parents and my siblings.  The emptiness was sad, the holidays felt lonely.

As the years have passed, my parents have only become more and more alienated by their own petulance.  With my brother still living at home with them, I can’t help but feel like their misanthropic tendencies have rubbed off on to him, and even my sister, who also lived with them for quite a bit longer than average.

My husband’s family is always together.  As my mom once not so eloquently stated, “They throw a party every time someone farts.”  Birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, vacations, even just because.  They are very tightly knit, something my grandmother strived for and something, while my mother may put on show to loathe, I can’t help but think she is secretly envious.  Being crotchety is lonely work.

I miss my Grandma Ola and her ability to gather everyone together, grudges and work be damned.  This is the woman who would make a friend for life by asking the stock person at the grocery store if they had any rocky road ice cream, her favorite flavor.  They would point her in the direction and she would reply, “Oh no, I don’t need to buy any, just wondered if you had any.  That’s my favorite.”  Then somehow, this stock person would get invited over for dinner, or ice cream, or sweet tea, and just like that, they too were family.

I want my house to be like my Grandma Ola’s.  I want everyone to feel welcome and at home.  I want my friends to feel like family and to know that they are loved just as though they were.  I hope as my children grow up and make friends and eventually date, (ack!), that their friends and dates feel equally comfortable in our home.  All I want is love and happiness.

As we grow and become more of the people we are destined to be, sometimes it is without the people we grew up with.  Our paths and circumstances take us all to different places, and it is in these times when our vision is refined and able to see  surroundings for what they truly are.  I am surrounded by my husband and my children and my furbabies in our wonderful new home.  I have dear family and friends that I am fortunate to be blessed with and interact with on a regular basis.  My siblings aren’t around, but they have their paths, and perhaps one day our paths will cross again.  My door and heart are always open.


New Beginnings!

“Everything will change.  The only question is growing up or decaying.” -Yolande Cornelia “Nikki” Giovanni

A brand new year always feel like a clean slate, a perfect diving board for starting fresh with anything in your daily routine that isn’t quite working for you.  I mentioned yesterday that I won’t be making any grand resolutions, simply because of my utter lack of tolerance for anything less than perfect when it comes to myself.  Yeah, I’m a sore loser.  If I make plans for myself and things don’t go accordingly, I pretty much do the equivalent of flipping the table, grabbing my toys, and storming home, not before screeching, “I’m not your friend anymore!”  I’m kind of ridiculous.

So this year, my goal is happy.  Easy enough, right?  I want to make choices that make me and my family happy.  I want to feel better, to do better, just all around to be better.

This year holds lots of pretty big ambitions, and we all need to be in the right place to achieve them.  Baby steps.

Organization wise, we have got to finish un-packing!  It is such a daunting task, looking at the sea of boxes in the garage.  So my goal with that is to do just one box a week.  I know we don’t have 52 boxes left to unpack, so that means it will easily get done before the end of the year.  I also know that while one box is the goal, maybe one weekend, Abe and I tackle a handful of boxes.  If the goal is small, anything more is just icing on the cake.

Health wise, well, I’m a hot mess.  It’s easy to put up drastic expectations, a strict plan of attack and discipline, but I know I would fail at that.  It’s kind of my thing.  I don’t like rules, so I break them every chance I get.  Yes, I have the maturity of a four year old when it comes to rules and authority, I realize.  😛  So, I will simply do small things this year.  I’m starting with a month of a green smoothie a day, to help me to get more greens and other healthy fruit and veg that I know I’m not getting enough of.  Don’t misread that.  I won’t be only drinking green smoothies, I won’t be replacing meals with green smoothies, and I most certainly won’t be giving up bacon, so let’s just be clear with that!  (Mmmmmm….bacon…)  I am just adding needed nutrition to my regular day.  If it happens to make me feel better and crave less crap, that is an amazing bonus!  I will try to share pics of my smoothies, for as long as it lasts.  No promises, I’m aiming small, remember.  😉

Family wise, we need to slow down.  We have crazy schedules, with school, work, scouts, dance, appointments, etc.  It is easy to feel rushed and out of control for most of the week, and I can tell you from much experience, that feeling sucks!  I’m not sure how, but I want to instill some calm into our daily routine, even if it’s just acting calm.  Hey, you gotta start somewhere, right?  Part of the crazy, involves the commute that Abe and Matt currently take for Boy Scouts.  When we moved, they stayed with the old troop.  That’s great and all, but it’s a half hour commute on a busy dance night.  Throw in four hungry kids, cold dark winter, and tired parents and well, it means Monday nights just suck hard in our house.  I am hoping that they can try out the Boy Scout troop close to home.  Their meeting times are better, the commute is a tiny fraction of the current one, and it’s still scouts!  We shall see, this mama has her fingers crossed!

So that is a taste of some changes I want to make with my family and myself this year.  Do you have big plans and goals for 2014?  Consider taking baby steps!  Be kind to yourself!  You have a whole year to work on making change, don’t let failed grandiose ideas rain on your parade!  This year can be the best year of your life!  Positive attitudes will get you everywhere in this world, even if it’s at a slower pace, at least you were smiling throughout the journey!  🙂

Watch for pics of my green smoothies and whatnot on the Facebook page HERE.

Patience is a virtue….

The Origins of Virtue

The Origins of Virtue (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One that I have never claimed to possess.  Here we are, five long months after our house hunting officially began.  The good news is, we found a house!  Again!  Hey, and this time, it’s not in a flood plane!  It even has light fixtures and flooring!  And door knobs!  We put our offer in mid May and it was accepted the very next day.  Since then, we have been waiting.  And waiting.  Annnnnnd waiting.  Ugh!

All of our papers are in order, all of the inspections, appraisals, pest checks, you name it, have been long done.  We have written checks, so many checks, so much money!  And now we are simply at the mercy of the underwriter, the one that is backed up and taking their sweet time.  Awesome.

We sold our current home, and if we aren’t out by the first, we owe the new owner rent for the month of August.  Ummm….no thank you!

Meanwhile, there is absolutely nothing that we can do.  We have done everything in a timely manner, now all we can do is wait.  I am so not good at waiting!

The house is in a new school district, so we have school registrations coming up fast.  I had hoped to get moved and settled well before that, so the kids felt less rushed and more at ease with all the changes.  I guess I just need to stop planning things.  Pffffft!

We’re hoping to hear good news this week.  We had a closing date of the 12th, which came and went because of the backed up underwriter.  Our loan officer *thinks* we should hear something this week, he said it’s all “clean” and that we need five days notice to schedule the closing with the title company.  Abe already took off a few days next week in anticipation of closing next week, so any thoughts, prayers or good wishes that everything stays on track would be greatly appreciated!

We have a new house, just waiting for us.  For that, I feel blessed and excited.  Honestly, I do.  I just need everyone on my frantic time schedule.  🙂