No one should expect life to be constantly filled with sunshine and fairy dust. It would be nice, but it is just not real. Lots of things in life are tough. There are disappointments, failures, sadness, heart-aches, illnesses, emotional and physical wounds which sometimes happen all at once. I believe it is through these trials in life that we become strengthened and are allowed to really appreciate all the blessings & gifts God bestows on us. Trials can make us feel vulnerable, but through vulnerability, we can develop humility, compassion and empathy and even heighten our sense of humor. The whole reason I got to thinking about this more, is because one of my girlfriends said to me, "If I didn't know & love you, I would HATE you because you are so perfect." We laughed as it was a joke, I am so obviously NOT perfect. She was trying to point out that we each have very different strengths. However, I think maybe I build a false impression because I certainly like to share the "Highs" in my life and am pretty guarded with the "Lows". The whole reason I blog here is to create an electronic scrapbook for my family, a way to share bits and pieces about our lives through stories, but primarily through pictures. Each year, I print out this blog into hard-copy as our family scrapbook. I now have three years of blog books, which are really fun to review and reminisce about, but it is just one aspect of our Lindgren-style life. It doesn't contain all the details of our daily happenings; it is a one-sided view created by me for my daughters to one day have and to help Steve & me remember when we one day succumb to dementia.
It is in the spirit of giving a broader view of our Lindgren-style life (with a tiny bit of humor mixed in) that I share a few of the
- On Monday, Kippy came home from school and as usual, Bella went bananas barking. Since the front door is always locked, the girls have been told to ring the doorbell once and then to be patient until I finish up whatever I am working on in my office and unlock the door. The official rule goes like this: "Only knock or ring once, because twice is annoying and three times - you are in trouble!" and has been in place now for the 9 years I have worked from home. As I was coming upstairs to let Kippy in, I heard her start pounding hard on the door and saw her slapping the window repeatedly with the palm of her hand. I furiously unlocked the door and lit into her, "WHAT THE HECK IS WRONG WITH YOU? YOU ARE GOING TO BREAK THE WINDOW!!" Kippy tried to interject, "But Mom, I wasn't..." I cut her off and chewed her out about being patient because I was finishing up with a phone call. Kippy started crying and ran into her bedroom. After I calmed down, I realized I had over-reacted and went into the bedroom and apologized. It was then that Kippy was able to tell me why she was making all the commotion - she had just seen Bella grab one of the hibiscus blossoms which had fallen on the floor and had started chewing on it. Kippy was trying to distract the dog so she wouldn't eat it. Life Lessons: Listen; Get more information; Don't jump to conclusions; Harsh words hurt feelings
- Also on Monday, I went to Kennedy Secondary school to help with the AAUW baking in preparation for the Tour of Homes. When I arrived at 7:00 pm, the baking was almost all done. I was 1 1/2 hours late! It had started at 5:30 pm, but I mistakenly "thought" it was at 7:00 pm. Life Lesson: Get Organized!
- Plucked a 1/2 inch long hair from my chin - GROSS! Life Lesson: Look in the mirror more often. BLUCK!!
- On Wednesday, I made beet chips from our surplus CSA supply.
Steve was the only one who liked them. Even I didn't like them! However, I made pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread and pumpkin muffins from fresh pumpkin for the first time and they were all delicious. Life Lesson: Not everything you do will be successful, but if you don't try, you won't know.
- This week, I threw away 5 rotten grapefruits, 1 moldy head of cauliflower, 2 questionable looking cucumbers, a number of tomatoes which were actually oozing some weird juice and some type of mystery leftover I found in tupperware. Just because I buy and even grow healthy food, doesn't mean that we remember to eat it all. Life Lesson: Get organized and just keep on trying to feed my family the best that I can.
- We had parent/teacher conferences on Thursday night at two different schools for the girls. Steve & I heard such wonderful things about both Abby & Angelique and I have to say I was honestly surprised. I was thinking, "Wow, are they talking about my kids?" I seem to go into conferences expecting the worst and just hoping for the best. Life Lesson: Maybe it is my weird coping strategy, but I think I need to work on dishing out praise more often to the girls instead of quizzing them, "Do you have all your homework done? Do you need to study for any tests?" all the time. I found myself wondering if I recognize the girls enough when they do things right or if I am constantly in "correction" mode. I am going to work harder on praising.
- On Saturday, it was my birthday and when Steve asked what I wanted to do, I said if the weather cooperates, I want to go hiking as a family at Maplewood State Park. As luck would have it, it was a gorgeous, cool, yet sunny, Fall day. Even tho Abby was less than thrilled, she was a trooper and the family (including Bella) loaded up the van by 10:30 AM and headed to the park. I was beyond excited because there still was some beautiful, colorful foliage clinging to a few of the trees. The trails were layered with crisp, crunchy leaves - my favorite! And then I tried to snap some pictures with my camera, only to find out that the battery was dead. It was the perfect setting, but I couldn't take any of the high quality pictures I had dreamed about including the elusive family photo for the annual Christmas card. I was a bit disappointed, but then I remembered I had a cellphone, so I captured the moments anyway, just not as perfectly. Maplewood was the highlight of my birthday for sure. Life Lesson: If you wait for everything to be perfect, you will always be waiting.
- I will end with one more craptastic moment, this morning was particularly cold. So for breakfast, I made oatmeal complete with chopped honey-crisp apples & walnuts. Then I decided that I would add a splash of Almond milk on top. I reached into the fridge, grabbed the carton and poured liquid egg whites on my oatmeal by accident! GAG!! I think my autopilot is broken. So, I proceeded to pour the egg whites off the best I could, stirred it up, grabbed the RIGHT container and splashed on some almond milk instead, and ate it up. Lesson Learned: Pay attention to what you are doing or be prepared to face the consequences.