Five Minute Friday – the Sunday version

Hi There-

Participating again, occasionally, with the gang at Lisa Jo’s place, which you can find here: http://bit.ly/1cZ4w4t

Here are the rules should you want to join me, which I hope you do some day. This is fun stuff and challenging to boot. The side effect? Your writing gets better, stronger. And you also get to encourage others too, which is icing on the cake for me.

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences and inappropriate comma use, like I do.  And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog.

Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too. This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging, yes, oh yes we do.

You ready? Here we go:

See

Thanks to  papaija2008 for the image.
Thanks to papaija2008 for the image.

I see the socks beside the bed, all wrangled and left in a pile as I try to make the house company ready. Sigh. Later, as I pad down to the kitchen, careful to not wake the baby, I will see a bill opened, left in the wrong place. He knows better, I think to myself. He knows where this goes.

Meanwhile, I’ll tend to forget my own inability to put the dishes in the dishwasher quickly, and I’ll turn a blind eye to the laundry piles. I’ll just see his faults, forgetfulness, not mine, never mine.

Oh how I have so much to see, truly, so much to really learn.

I’ll see his bookmark, a shred of a flyer, and grin at his always trying to make use of something inherently wasteful. I see the beautifully crafted small stool that he made from a tree we had to cut down. I smile warmly, a life we’ve created in these details that in my better moments I’ll remember how much I love it all.

I try to begin to really see the joy and the love between the beauties and the battles of what is an authentic marriage.

Most days I will forget, careless and caustic in forgetting to ask about his day, and putting away the cup I always inevitably leave at my bedside table that makes him crazy.

Later, he will forget all about the task I asked him to do.

Later still, we will both again dance in the familiar refrain of restlessness, frustration, forgiveness and love, over and over again, like we’ve not ever heard the song ever before. While our emotions forget, our feet remember the movements exactly, like a well-rehearsed, retired ballerina whose body remembers when her mind regresses.

And in this I’ll say a silent thank you while weaving in a prayer to see the beauty and the joy in all this. Especially knowing what we know–that we’re leaving two sets of permanent prints in this life not unlike fossilized dinosaur tracks, while the others leave bread crumbs in the snow, only to be lost in the snow drift of life, children, and obligations.

And only then do I begin to truly see.

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Five Minute Friday – on a Saturday evening

So, here is this, a Five Minute Friday challenge, one I used to do with some regularity a while ago.

We won’t mention how long it’s been since I’ve participated in this, that’s not polite conversation. But, if you must know, it’s been a while. See previous post for the reason why.

And here are the rules, should you want to join me, which I hope you do some day. This is fun stuff here, and challenging, and a great side effect is that your writing gets better, stronger. And you also get to encourage others too, which is icing on the cake.

For a reminder-this Five Minute Friday thing is a weekly writing “game” from my bloggy friend Lisa-Jo Baker, who blogs (and writes heart-breakingly, beautiful words and stories) at http://lisajobaker.com/

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences and inappropriate comma use, like I do.  And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog.

Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too. This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging, yes, oh yes we do.

You ready? Here we go:

Grace

thanks to  papaija2008 for the image use.
thanks to papaija2008 for the image.

 

So, today, because I apparently like to make more issues for myself (as if there aren’t enough there to deal with already) in the middle of a beautiful November day—crisp, crackle-y and full of all kinds of wonderful autumn colors, I decided to go jean shopping.

Because I apparently like to take my life in my own hands.

So, with already faltering semi-ok attitude and a gift card in hand, off I went.

It didn’t end well. In fact, if I’ll be really honest with myself, most of these shopping escapades lately don’t bode very well for me; at the very minimum, I end up feeling very bad about my hips; and at the very worst I end up hating all of life, wondering about all of my choices in life, my husband, my house, and the last dessert I had that only aided in creating the hip situation I’m currently in. It’s not pretty.

Maybe there should be a law about jean shopping less than a year after you have a child.  Perhaps I should follow it.

Like I said, I must really, really like to take my life in my own hands.

But thank God for God, and for grace, because on the days I don’t quiet the little voice inside of me with donuts, I hear Him. I hear Him say it’s all ok, and then there is an overwhelming quiet and flood of peace that I can’t deny. And I have to say that is a whole lot more reassuring and confidence boosting that trying to fit my whole self into a pair of jeans that clearly weren’t meant for me.

His grace is the one I seek, the one I so desperately long to find, especially on days like these, running long on self-deprecation and short on mercy. And jeans.

But that’s ok. Because in this grace and quiet, I’ve decided maybe it’s cords for me this fall.

Five Minute Friday (on a Monday) Red

Five Minute Friday, yep, on a Monday. Monday. I clearly ain’t that proud.

But, wanted to do this, and so here it goes–writing, amongst the laundry piles, the to-do lists and the general clutter and eons-long list of things yet to be done. But writing, still. In the midst of all of that and the new bit of life with a baby, so feel like a champ that I can just sit down for 10 or so odd minutes and pound out some words and thoughts. Truly, this feels like superhero work that as a bonus, makes me feel good about life. And P.S.-it’s a special treat for you if the words and thoughts are actually spelled correctly!

So, here is this, a Five Minute Friday challenge, one I used to do with some regularity a while ago.

And here are the rules, should you want to join me, which I hope you do some day. This is fun stuff here, and challenging, and a great side effect is that your writing gets better, stronger. And you also get to encourage others too, which is icing on the cake.

For a reminder-this Five Minute Friday thing is a weekly writing “game” from my bloggy friend Lisa-Jo Baker, who blogs (and writes heart-breakingly, beautiful words and stories) at http://lisajobaker.com/

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences and inappropriate comma use, like I do.  And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog.

Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too. This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging, yes, oh yes we do.

Each week is a new word, a new thought starter, and you have 5 minutes to write….and are you ready?

go-

 RED

thanks to nuchylee for the image use.
thanks to nuchylee for the image use.

Can I tell you honestly? When I see the word red, all I think is seeing red, devil with the red dress on, and this little random factoid that I learned: that red is the most important color on a Pinterest pin because it is the color that attracts the most pinners.

Random, right?

But, since I can’t write about all of these, I’ll write about one, and that’s seeing red. Which, unfortunately I see more often these days, as I’m a mother of a new one and have sleep deprivation on a pretty regular basis. And I’m also a mother of a toddler, so therefore in the stage of being entrenched in their daily negotiations that so much so that it feels more like negotiating with a crazed terrorist (but the loveliest, cutest sort) than it feels like rearing children.

And so often, I lose my cool. I don’t yell, I don’t scream, which I’m real thankful for, but I so quickly lose my patience for the 30th “why” question on something I’ve already explained about 20 times before; I so quickly get tired of the “stay away from your brother’s face” phrase I have to repeat over and over again; I so quickly get tired, in spirit and in just maturity, of being the parent and being the bigger person instead of falling into the emotional exchange with a toddler who’s so deeply seated in the smack-dab middle of her toddlerhood that I think she may never come out of this stage, and all the while, me acting like a eye-rolling babysitter instead of her mother.

And I know it has nothing, this toddlerhood, on raising a teenager, so I hear. But I have to say, that all the cards I’ve been getting lately for our new one’s birth have said, more or less, “good luck on going from 3 to 4!” and every time, I jump to the conclusion that they are talking about my toddler, and how going from age 3 to 4, age 4 which happens later this year.  I only recently figured out that these cards were talking about our family going from 3 people to 4 people, not about my toddler’s age at all.

Can you tell I’ve been a little exasperated with my 3 year old?

But truth be told, I love her, dearly. Always have. Always will, despite anything and everything, even my own attitude. And that’s true for the new one too, no matter what sorts of trouble or little annoyances crop up.

And another truth-I am so thankful, especially, for the one who hears my prayers, my desperate, keep-me-calm and help-my-keep-my-tone-and-attitude-respectful, sometimes red-laced prayers.

Five Minute Friday – Worship

Hi there, friend. It’s been a while, hasn’t it?

So, life throws you curveballs sometimes and sometimes those curveballs are beautiful, wonderful little cherubs called babies, and that’s what has happened here. And I’m beyond blessed.

However, these little curveballs wrapped in cute dimpled flesh also have agendas of their own, needs that need to be attended to (and getting smiles a great reward for those needs being met) and also: growth spurts, reflux issues, and oh yeah-some allergies we just found out about.

Whew.

But tonight, I steal a little time away from my tinies for me, and the best me-time I can get is writing. If only there were enough time and energy to write my days away, I would. But see paragraph above why I can’t. The loveliest of interruptions are my life now.

So, here is this, a Five Minute Friday challenge, one I used to do with some regularity a while ago.

And here are the rules, should you want to join me, which I hope you do some day. This is fun stuff here, and challenging, and a great side effect is that your writing gets better, stronger. And you also get to encourage others too, which is icing on the cake.

For a reminder-this Five Minute Friday thing is a weekly writing “game” from my bloggy friend Lisa-Jo Baker, who blogs (and writes heart-breakingly, beautiful words and stories) at http://lisajobaker.com/

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences and inappropriate comma use, like I do.  And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog.

Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too. This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging, yes, oh yes we do.

Each week is a new word, a new thought starter, and you have 5 minutes to write….and are you ready?

go-

WORSHIP

 

thanks to franky242 for the image.
thanks to franky242 for the image.

Worship – a beautiful word (and connotation) to many, but to me, it’s a word I equate with trying too hard, a bit of rigid Christianity, complete with images of The Church Lady from SNL during the Dana Carvey years; a word I associate with some of the seemingly try-too-hard and over-earnest worship music of the early nineties.

Worship, to me, is not this type of corporate movement or sort of idea. Worship may be what we do, but it’s simple; not these grandiose movements or actions or very active nouns. It’s isn’t loud, it’s a very quiet verb, a way of living life.

For me, worship is less formal, more intimate in nature—it’s the mental hand-wringing and pleading with God while doing the dishes; it’s the silent and urgent prayers while waving good-bye to your children at school. It’s the early morning sunshine, the dew on the grass, the uninterrupted and still-quiet world before it’s had the caffeine of traffic, rush hour, loudness. It’s the hushed, desperate thank yous for a positive test, a negative biopsy, a disease narrowly missed.

To me, worship is an internal space with God, an intimate and constant conversation with Him throughout the day, throughout my life.

And boy howdy, how desperate I am for it.

Five Minute Friday – Rhythm

Five Minute Friday – Rhythm

So! Here we go again, another Five Minute Friday, this time on a Sunday-day.We’re going with whatever works, still, until life moves a little slower and more predictable for me, which, hopefully will be in less than 15 years from now, but who knows. I have very small children, so no one hold your breath on that one, ok?

In the meantime, just note that my Five Minute Fridays–will be anywhere from Friday to, um, Thursday night. Yes, I do believe I posted that late once; the good news about this group and challenge is that it’s full of grace and forgiveness. And thankfully too, each week is a new week to start over and aim for Friday night writing, should life line up accordingly. Which happens for me, it looks like once in a blue moon or every other month or so.

For a reminder-this Five Minute Friday thing is a weekly writing “game”  from my bloggy friend Lisa-Jo Baker, who blogs (and writes heart-breakingly, beautiful words and stories) at http://lisajobaker.com/

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences, like I do.  Pretend those don’t exist or don’t matter. (Ha!) And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog. Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too.  This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging too.

Each week is a new word, a new thought starter, and you have 5 minutes to write….and are you ready?

go-

Rhythm

thanks to savit keawtavee for the image.
thanks to savit keawtavee for the image.

We all sit gathered around a tiny table in a restaurant wondering how and if this planned “dance” that we are doing is really going to go down, and everyone’s a little guarded, defensive, unsure about themselves and the inevitability of this dance going to the world-wide interwebs where the judges on their couches and in dark rooms with bright computer screens will deem you internet gold or rusted metal in an instant, all based on their impression of your moves, your rhythm.

And the truth is that we’re not afraid of the publicity so much as we are afraid of the judging of our awkward bodies dancing, trying to find the rhythm to a song, which is really trying to find a rhythm to a soul that is so vulnerable and childlike that we dare to say that we are one of the ones that belong to over-populated club of “Does Not Dance.”

I may or may not be one of the card-carrying members.

But really, the only difference the ones that can and will dance, madly, passionately, unashamed like those brave souls on the Ellen show is the confidence that they have to listen to their own soul, revel in their own awkward body movements and shapes, and be ok with whatever funny (or cool) shapes their arms and legs contort into.

These are the truly unafraid.

We need to remember to find our own rhythm, be ok with our own feeble, erroneous and most of the time not-so-graceful selves and just lose ourselves in the music.  Toddlers do it, and we applaud voraciously and find joy in them finding movement, the need to move in such an imperfect way yet we so afraid to be so vulnerable as to just dance?

Though it scares me breathless some days, I find this vulnerability (my freestyle dancing at the heart of this matter) one of the most beautiful gifts this life has to offer.

May I not be so scared by the moves and rhythms of my own soul.

Five Minute Friday – Fall

So! Here we go again, another Five Minute Friday, this time on a Sunday night.

We’re going with whatever works.

So, this time I was an overachiever and wrote for longer than five minutes, and the time limit is a big part of the rules of Five Minute Friday, so this time, sharing with you all, but not linking up, as it doesn’t seem to be fair. I’ve found that for me, writing is like the running I did in my teenage years–sometimes, I just needed to keep running, farther and longer than I had planned, not because of any calorie or health-driven reason, but simply because I needed the mental space, that the running helped clear my head.  Writing most days, is not unlike the running of my youth.  So hence my over-five-minutes Friday entry.

For a reminder-this Five Minute Friday thing is a weekly writing “game”  from my bloggy friend Lisa-Jo Baker, who blogs (and writes heart-breakingly, beautiful words and stories) at http://lisajobaker.com/

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences, like I do.  Pretend those don’t exist or don’t matter. (Ha!) And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog. Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too.  This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging too.

Each week is a new word, a new thought starter, and you have 5 minutes to write….and are you ready?

go-

Fall

Thanks to Paul Gooddy for the image.

Fall-a season, a word, a noun, and mostly, an action we’d rather forget.

A fall from grace, a trip, slip and a fall that eludes that we are anything but dignified, smart, and reminds us constantly, obnoxious in it’s pride, that we are not in control.

We’re not ever in control, we tend to forget this.  Falling frequently, mostly stumbling and tripping on my own human feet and inadequacies tends to help me remember. There’s yet to be a sidewalk crack in my path that I haven’t tripped over.

Our frequent falls, fails, mistakes, missteps, errors of judgement and timing tell us something we’d rather not articulate: we’re not in control at all.  That control, of anything it seems, is really just an illusion.  And a really funny one, a fun house distorted mirror, and seems especially cruel if you have small children underfoot.

Our falls remind us that we’re human.  Which is not a bad thing.  Perhaps that’s why we’re so embarrassed of them when they happen, it lets us know there are greater things than us our there, it connects us to our roots, the very essence of who we are: messy, fumbly, awkward and desperately in need of each other. Perhaps that’s also why, when we get older, we tend to be more embarrassed of a fall; we are adults, supposed to hold it all together. I’m sure I’m not the only one that has an older relative that is shameful of a slip.  But the falls are a gift—a reminder that we’re not robots, perfect or complete, and the greatest joys and sorrows is to live our life to the fullest in our temporary skins and emotions.

But the thing to remember is this-all of our mistakes lead us to the greatest of falls: falling on our knees.

Five Minute Friday – Comfort

So! Here we go again, another Five Minute Friday, this time on a Sunday morning.

Hey, whatever works, right?

So, this time I was an overachiever and did it twice–once on Friday night, just to let go, challenge my mind in another way, and once this morning, after inspiration struck as I was opening the blinds. So today, you get two-for-one! And you also get to tell me which one resonated the most with you in the comments, if you feel so lead.

For a reminder-this Five Minute Friday thing is a weekly writing “game”  from my bloggy friend Lisa-Jo Baker, who blogs (and writes heart-breakingly, beautiful words and stories) at http://lisajobaker.com/

So, here’s the challenge, should you accept it: you write for 5 minutes with freedom like you have no fear or shame.  Or propensity for run-on sentences, like I do.  Pretend those don’t exist or don’t matter. (Ha!) And then you have to be brave (or at least pretend to be) and link up to her blog. Encouraging the writer who links up before you is part of the deal, too.  This last rule is crucial, as we all need to encourage others. Why encourage another writer? Because at one point or another in our lives, we all need encouraging too.

Each week is a new word, a new thought starter, and you have 5 minutes to write….and are you ready? go-

Comfort

 ID-10065927

Comfort 1:

Words and words and words pour out of me on Fridays, over the weekend.

Ideas and thoughts and some of which just don’t make much sense, don’t stand up to the heat of the weekdays.

But I write.

I write mostly for my children, to leave a legacy, to leave a name for myself, who I was on my short time here, I write to leave lessons, memories for them as to remind them as to the essence of who they really are, before the hard and defensive years of the teens and twenties turn them towards themselves, untrusting as to who they are and if they are good enough.

They are more than good enough, they are worthy.

I leave words in their journals, their somewhat-finished baby books, in emails, in notes, in cards, in the big blank sheets of the opening pages of a book where you can write a dedication, I leave words wherever I think they can find them, hang onto to them in moments of stress or insecurity or whatever thing makes them feel any less than beautiful and worthy.

I leave words to comfort.

I leave words in their ears, in their dreams at night I try to whisper sweet things that will stick with them, as if some sort of dreamy osmosis, that they take deep into their subconscious to hear; I try to say loving words enough times, the world over, so that my words, those words are written on their hearts so much so that the outside world can’t erase them, can’t change their minds on who they are or how so very much loved they are.

I write and I write and I write.  Mostly for them, but for me, for my piece of mind too, my comfort in knowing that I am trying to do the very best mothering I can, that they won’t live their lives rudderless, unaware of how very loved they are.

Comfort

Thanks to pakorn for the image.
Thanks to pakorn for the image.

Comfort 2:

My long, 6 foot table, my beautifully reclaimed wood dining room table, the one piece of furniture in our house that is the most expensive (and the one that, in a fire, after my family and pets were safe, I would hitch up on my back and walk out of the house with) sits this morning in a mess of piles, paper, and other misc projects and things collected on it.

I open the blinds high, wide, and let the sun rays pour in anyways.

Mind you, this piles aren’t organized, the room itself lovely, but not masterfully decorated, and this scene certainly isn’t Pinterest-worthy.

I open the blinds anyway, a bit bold, brave, and perhaps stupid in that I kind of do still care what others, my neighbors think.

It’s an amazing ironic and comforting move all at the same time, because it reminds me of God and me, God and humankind: He illuminates the mess.

Whatever state things are in, whether you are ok with the problem/issue/state of your dining room table or not, He illuminates it.  He makes the sun shine in, so much so that you can’t help but throw back the curtains and breathe in the sunlight, comfort, deep comfort is knowing that you are truly loved just as you are.