Going to the Chapel...(or the Lake) and We're Gonna Get Married

This Saturday my sister is getting married. There will be flowers and rings, cake (well, cupcakes) and vows. There will also be two brides. Yes, you read that right my sister is marrying a woman. Not just a woman but her partner, best friend and love. I am thrilled for her, for them.
 
I can't think of many things better than a good wedding. I say this meaning the good weddings that start with good relationships, not just the good weddings with good food and open bar. I mean the kind of weddings where you attend and feel happy to see two people committing to one another for the right reasons. They love each other, adore each other even, but more than that they respect one another and deeply care for the other person - more than themselves most of the time. I am sad to say I have been to many weddings where I didn't feel this way about the happy couple but when you attend one that you see those things...icing on the cake (or cupcake!)

My sister was blessed with three kids. Joshua, Paul and Kylie mean the world to her and I can imagine the adjustment to gaining a full family along with her girlfriend was difficult for Sarah at times. I am proud to say she has tried so hard for these kids, for who she considers to be her kids as well. I am also proud of my nephews and niece. They are open-minded and loving kids. I am proud to say they have accepted my sister's relationship (although reluctantly at first) and now are one combined family. It may not be like everyone else's family, but they have parents (and now a step-mom) that love them. Sometimes being different isn't so bad and being loved is always good.

Yes, I know that gay marriage is not legal in the state of WI. I also know it is a small detail in the lives of these two women. Because let's be honest, the state telling me I am legally married does not make me anymore of a wife to my husband. So, in their eyes, and ours, they are getting married.... for better or worse, richer or poorer...they do. One day, I pray that this right will be legally theirs, but until then I am certain their vows will hold as much meaning as every other happy couple on their wedding day.

I wish them a lifetime of love and happiness.  I hope their family has the kind of love all families deserve.

To Joy and Sarah, I can't wait for your special day. I wish your family all the love in the world. xoxo

In Need of Patience

I have a hard time with patience. This is not only true in regards to my kids or husband or even the person driving extremely, achingly, slow in front of me in the fast lane (although that person makes me INSANE.) I am inpatient in general regard to my entire life. I will be the first to admit I am always anxious about what’s next. I often struggle to realize what is happening right now is good. So I miss out on how really good it was. Sad and disappointing, I know.

Having said that, it is no big surprise that my house is making me crazy with impatience. We recently moved (in November of last year) to a new, yet really old, house. This was something Jason & I had been talking about and planning to do since we bought our previous home. We knew we would move back to this community and raise our family. We also knew that we wouldn’t be able to afford the same kind of house (in terms of size, etc.) that our old house was in said new community. But still, we were going to make the move. After all, this town is filled with our family and friends, amazing award-winning schools, great parks, and I could go on and on. This was where we belonged.

Pre-move, Jason kept warning me, “You know our new house is not going to have as much space as this house, right?” Me, “Of course, we’ll adjust. I just want to move!” This conversation would be replayed many times. It would move from space, to yard size, to closets, to master baths….and still I just wanted to move. The truth is, I loved my old house. It was brand new when we bought it and had more than enough space for us to start our family. It had a big backyard and spacious patio. It had closets – lots and lots of glorious closets. And bathrooms that were big enough for us to hang out in during our morning routines or during the kids bath time routines. We lived very comfortably in that house.

I really like our new house, too. I don’t love it (yet) but I love what it could be. This is where the not so patient part comes in. I want it to be what I want, now. I am getting tired of things about its oldness. (Jason calls it charming and although there are some charming things, it is mostly old.) Like how the electric is run all crazy and I can’t turn the vacuum on upstairs without blowing a fuse. Or that the appliances are so outdated the fridge doesn’t have an ice-maker (how do people really live happily without an ice-maker?) and the oven doesn’t tell you when it is pre-heated. You just have to guess. Then there are the big things, like bathrooms. I don’t like anything about my current bathrooms and dream of the changes that will hopefully come to them. I know Jason hates that he hits his head on the basement ceiling and the upstairs ceiling; he is proving to be too tall for our little bungalow. Let’s just sum it up by saying we have so, so much we want to do to our home that I often feel overwhelmed. The whole idea makes me both nervous and fearful and hopeful and excited. Here’s the problem…I want it to happen now. As in instantaneously. The planning and budgeting and talking about it aren’t working for me. I need results. My husband assures me they will come. He has a way of reminding me that we need to walk before we sprint for surely we will not win the race but die seconds into it (we aren’t in that great of shape.)

I also hate when I see the progress everyone else is making. I know, it is completely ridiculous to compare us to others, but I still do it. Don’t we all, at least a little, every now and then? It is a regular old case of keeping up with the Joneses. I hate those perfect people and their perfect bathrooms and lives. I am smart enough to know this is not a healthy behavior. Besides, what appears to be is not always what is. I also realize I am so blessed and that I am a Jones to someone else. Someone out there wishes they had my perfect (or not so perfect) life and bathrooms.

If I could, I would tell those people, like me, to just be. Be happy with what you have and thankful for those you share it with. I would also tell them that my bathroom really does suck so they should definitely consider coveting someone else’s. Hopefully with time - and a little patience - my house will be all I've dreamed it could be.

Drowning

I am stuck in this feeling. It is like someone has a hold of my shirt and is pulling me ever so slightly backwards. Sometimes it feels like something is tugging at my feet, just yanking me down. The pull is firm and steady. Almost constant. Gravitational.

I know it takes a lot of work to keep up with my life. My life being: my husband, our kids, the dog, our house and all it contains, my job and myself. There is a natural order of priorities within that list that end up skewed occasionally no matter how hard I try to keep them on the straight and narrow. I have the best intentions. The problem (or what I think is the problem most days) is that my life is not really in my control most of the time. Everyone else runs it.

I start the day with a well laid out plan. My list of things I am going to accomplish seems organized and doable. But then something happens. The kids get sick and need doctor appointments, we need milk (and ten other things) from the store, the dog needs her meds refilled and her nails trimmed, the kids have no clean socks, bed sheets need changing and Jack’s school project is not complete…I could go on and on. Something always happens. Then before you know it I have skipped my jog, the floors did not get vacuumed and the laundry was not folded or put away. It is 8:30pm and the dinner dishes are on the counter and I have not sat down once since I walked in the door. That day’s simple list was shot to hell. At this point all I want to do is crawl in my bed, under my covers and pretend I am somewhere else.

I keep telling myself it will get easier once we get a regular schedule with our new (soon to start) nanny. She will help keep things more organized around the house and with the boys. Everything won’t always be last minute. Maybe then I will be able to stop and enjoy things for a moment instead of racing the clock and my list, my life. I never seem to be able to run at a pace that can keep up.

There has to be a way out of this feeling. The pulling and tugging, the drowning, that I am desperately fighting against. Now if only I could find the time or energy to figure it out.

Bad Hair and Bathrooms

I hate blow-drying my hair. I mean, really, really hate it. I have extremely thick, unruly hair that takes forever to blow-dry. It has to be separated into layers and dried one layer at a time. Even at my fastest, when I am rushing through it, this process takes at least 20 minutes. The rushing, half-ass job means it looks like crap (which is what happens most days) and in order for it to look good (or as good as I can get it) I really need at least 35 minutes. Add another 10 minutes of flat-ironing to that and you are left with one semi-perfect, sculpted, brown football helmet of hair.

The time spent is not even the worst of it. It is the cramping, paralyzing pain in my right hand from the brushing. First the paddle brush followed by the round brush, over and over again trying to smooth out the wavy mess known as my hair. So there’s the Carpel Tunnel I have to work through. There is also the sweating. This is the worst. Who wants to take a shower only to get out all clean and un-sweaty and start sweating immediately? 10 minutes in to the blow-drying process the shower was for nothing and I am sweating like a pig. I actually have to take sweat-wiping breaks to sop up the sweat rivers rolling all over me. So after all this, my hair will look good but I will smell like I just ran 5 miles. Nice. Time well spent.

Then there is the fact that I blow-dry my hair in my bathroom. The same restroom I share with my family. Of three boys. This is quite possibly the dirtiest room in my house. I have to wipe my bathroom down with Clorox wipes daily. In my opinion, the bathroom should be kept clean and sanitary. The toilet should be free of any bodily function remnants and the sink should not be coated with a layer of old, crusty toothpaste and a ring of dirt. The bathtub floor should not be black or brown (when you have a white tub) and you should not be able to see the dried soap scum bubbles on the shower walls. And last, but still very important, there should be no pee anywhere on the floor. I think these are simple requests.

I have tried teaching my boys, all three of them, that these are the rules. There is one of me and three of them. Guess who wins? One hint, not me or my Clorox wipes. I know when boys are little and potty-training these messes can happen. They miss the bowl, aim to high, shake it off all over and so forth. But I didn’t know that this still continues to occur at age 35. I am certain Jason gets as much pee on the outside of the toilet and floor as Jack & Joey does.  Jack actually manages to get pee on the wall. THE WALL! How you ask? He turns to talk to people in the hallway and apparently forgets he is peeing! Here’s a tip: grab hold of that bad boy and AIM. It is pretty effing simple. The amazing thing is these boys could hit just about any target with a squirt gun.

I won’t even get started on the sink or the tub and I can’t even step foot on the floor without shower shoes on. It is starting to resemble a gas station bathroom. There is rarely toilet paper replaced and I have to hover over my own toilet 90% of the time. I would be better off peeing in the backyard with my only girl, the dog.

So the only thing I hate more than blow-drying? Cleaning the bathroom.