Sunday, May 25, 2008

My Goals... more or less

I want to think more and speak less. To encourage more and criticize less. To weigh less and to try more. To stress less and relax more. Dream more, hope more, live more, see more. Obsess less, despair less, complain less, give up less. Work harder, not more; eat better, not less.

See friends more, distance myself less.

Discipline myself more, criticize myself less.

Teach less, be taught more. Give more, take less. Remember to be humble more, allow pride to seep in less. Write more, read more, space out in front of the comp or TV less.

Clean more, moan about it less. Collect less clutter, create more space. Plan more, be ruled by others' schedules less.

Be on time more, be late never.

And on that note, I should finish getting ready for church.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

My Comment Trouble

I recently received a text message from a fellow blogger about her inability to comment on my blog. She thought this was something I had decided for my blog, but no, that is not true. I would LOVE to get a comment once in a while, but apparently, if I use any kind of layout other than the standard old school layout that doesn't let me have nifty little widgets, the comment feature is disabled. Well, not disabled, it just doesn't work.

Which is quite frustrating. Once I have some time to sit in front of my comp at home and tackle this irritant, I will.

Is it obvious that I'm stalling for a brilliant topic to fall out of the sky and onto my desk?

Still nothing.

Okay, I'll do this instead. I was recently inspired by aforementioned friend's beautifully written bio on her new blog, so I'll try to artfully share a little personal insight.

As I sat this afternoon, eating lunch at home, with my dog laying nearby (bet you didn't know I had a dog... she said sarcastically), I enjoyed a Pasta Primavera Lean Cuisine and a handful of cherries. It was then that the thought occurred to me that I really did quite enjoy cherries, and I had to rattle my head when I stopped for a moment to question which I preferred, cherries or strawberries.

In case you're wondering, strawberries are much better than cherries.

Which led me to question what it is that defines a "berry." To me, it was a mute* point, because as long as it ends in "rry" or its plural form is "rries", I love it. Boysenberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries... these are a few of my favorite things. And while "cherries" fit by the letter, I'm not so sure they fit by their other defining properties.

Does anyone know the answer to this? I would say leave me a comment, but, we already know that's not an option.

*I realize that the correct phrasing is "moot" point, but I can never get over the time a former supervisor was overheard passionately declaring (repeatedly) that something was a "mute point".

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My Dog Ate My Knitting

Scout PoutScouticus the Wonder-Dog has discovered how to manipulate a doorknob*, in spite of her obvious lack of opposable thumbs. We discovered this a couple weeks ago. It started as an accident, when she decided she didn't want to be confined to our balcony and she jumped and scratched at the door until it opened. I had hoped it was a one-time thing. But, on Saturday morning while Aaron and I were in bed, she proved to me that she had unlocked the secret to getting through closed doors.

I thought she would mostly utilize this newfound talent to get into the room where we were... like it was a separation "have to get to you" thought.

However, that theory was blown out of the water when we came home Saturday evening to discover an Etiwanda High School hat and a small stuffed animal on the landing. I knew something was amiss, and when I got all the way upstairs, I discovered a chewed up DVD case, and a mass of black yarn that had been dragged from the spare room to the living room.

I had started up a new habit of knitting. Heather took quite some time and patience teaching me how, and I had really started to enjoy it. I hadn't made much progress, but it was definitely beginning to take shape (sort-of). And now my first knitting project has even more personality because my dog ate the corner of it. 

If she weren't cute, she'd be on a bus right now headed for Louisiana.

*Okay, she's not that smart, they are those easily manipulated lever-type doorknobs, not your old fashioned Bedknobs and Broomsticks type knobs.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

People Are The Best Part Of Life

On days like today, I actually love people.

I really "should" be loving them every day, but I am often miserably unsuccessful at that.

But today, that's the good stuff. It actually started late last night, but it was solidified at the end of my workday today at 4:30, when Donna and I were ready to close up shop. Enter Debra.

Debra needed someone to listen to her, and she needed prayer. She's in a bad situation at home, where it's soon-to-be-ex-husband pitting children against their own mother. I'm certain that there are several layers and depths of injuries in all of these relationships, but I was thankful for the reminder that some of the lessons I've learned in life are put to good use when it comes to encouraging others. And then there are just the simple little moments of grace, when I have the right words to say or feel like I know how to pray in a situation. I don't deserve to "feel good" in those moments, I don't deserve a pat on the back from myself or my friends. But somehow, I find myself encouraged, reminded of my hope. Reminded that, while I was still a sinner, Christ died for me. And that while I am still a sinner, I have been given the Holy Spirit, and through that spirit, my heart is stirred to love those who feel unloved, to have compassion for a complete stranger.

And as I sit at 1am and listen to three big nerds laughing and debating the presidential election, I think to myself, "I love these guys."

I wish I loved like this more often.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Don't Get Your Hopes Up

Don't get your hopes up. Don't bet on the Dodgers in the post-season.

When did it become a vice to hope for the improbable? Hope is such a great concept. It's something that keeps people going when they're in desperate times. We embrace hope as this vague altruistic concept that energizes children in third-world countries and prisoners of war. But when it comes to hoping for something tangible in "real" life, you know, in the good ol' "American Dream" life, it's silly to get one's hopes up. It almost becomes juvenile, laughable.


I talk to myself saying "Don't get your hopes up." I say it to myself in the mirror, or as I begin to drift into a dreamworld of what-ifs.

What if we get the house?

What if I'm pregnant?

What if we got out of debt?

What if...

Yeah. Don't get your hopes up. I hear it in my head, sometimes in voices of friends and family, and sometimes just in my own. I can't help but think that there has to be more... that sometimes when you "get your hopes up" it's that much sweeter when the dreams really do come true.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Control Yourself, Woman!

I find that my biggest struggle with self-control has been eating. I have come to grips with the fact that I love food.

So now that I find myself in some sort of health struggle that keeps me from enjoying just about anything that I eat, it's difficult. I don't know exactly what's ailing me, but if I eat anything, even a small portion, I feel as though I gorged myself on an entire feast. I get heartburn and even a little queasy sometimes. And no, I'm not pregnant, but thanks for asking. I wish all of this was for a really good reason like that. But no, ever since my big sick day two weeks ago tomorrow, I just haven't gotten back to normal.

All that to say, it's really forcing me into a new realm of self-control. If I eat too much or something I really shouldn't, I actually have a physical backlash to look forward to. An instant one of the painful variety, not just an added pound or twenty. In a way, I'm thankful - I mean, it really is helping my weight loss efforts. Although, I do hope I'm not just sort of wasting away over here only to bounce back up 5 pounds once I am able to eat again.

Hence, my "self-controlled" week was spent primarily thinking about food and how much I love it and hate it right now. I'm sure this whole thing will be beneficial in the long run; I'll find the balance between loving food and hating it, both of which can be dangerous extremes.