Tuesday, January 27, 2009

You gotta have goals in life

The other day as we were sitting in the parking lot at Jonah's school, Kate began counting school buses. She counted them about 5 times in a row and then declared, "When I grow up, I want to be a beautiful princess and a bus driver. I will drive a bus and wear huge panties."

I guess all that constant sitting on the bus causes your butt to get large!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Just a week

It's unsettling how fast things can change in just a week.

Last Wednesday, I was at home trying to entertain the kids while we the first of 3 in a row snow days. Things were right in my world.

Within 24 hours, it was like someone put me in a blender and messed everything up. Thursday night I found out that on of my best friend's cancer has returned. She was diagnosed almost 2 years ago with breast cancer and with her usual determination, kicked it rather easily considering all she had to go through. And now, she's facing an even bigger challenge and is fighting for her right to watch her daughter grow up.

I've gone through all sorts of emotions and feelings and thoughts and what keeps coming back to me is, "How to I cope with losing someone who has been a constant in my life for the last 11 years?"

I hate cancer. I hate what it does to people and I hate how it hurts families. I hate it so much that the other night I was alone in my house and I screamed and cried so long that I didn't really have a voice anymore.

I've always known that life is fragile, but this has made an impression on me that will never go away.

Today, her church as declared to be a "prayer vigil" for her. Please pray for Julie. She needs a miracle.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Today it really hit me that my kids have no idea how good they have it. It's not that we have a lot of money, or that they get every single thing they could ever want because that is not the case. What they don't realize is the reality of how so many other kids in the world--kids that they go to school with, have to live.

On more than one occasion recently, I've been talking with two of my friends about how sad the conditions are for children who live literally right under our noses. All I have to do is walk into my children's school and the reality hits me like a brick.

There are kids who are dirty. These are little kids who don't know to hop in the tub or shower on their own. They're at the mercy of their parents who don't make sure their hair and bodies are clean and don't worry about washing their clothes. There are kids that are hungry whose families don't have enough money to buy food.

One friend of mine was telling me about the living conditions of a little girl she and her husband had befriended because this little girl just seemed sad all the time. Her living conditions were despicable...trash everywhere, dishes everywhere, constant lice, and only a bare mattress and pillow with a wadded up blanket to cuddle with at night.

What kind of future do kids who have to grow up like this really have? Can they possibly ever get ahead in life? It breaks my heart that at such a young age their futures are bleak.

I'm not saying that these kids aren't loved. Many times the parents just don't know any other way. It's sad that the cycle seems to continue generation after generation.

Tonight when I tucked my kids in and said prayers with them, I asked them, "Do you know how blessed you are to have a warm, clean, cozy bed?" They told me that they did, but I don't really know if they truly get it. Their innocence, in some ways, is keeping them from realizing what life for some can be like.

So, I guess in many ways, I am torn. Do I want my children to fully appreciate their lives and be thankful? Yes. However, do I want to remove the veil of innocence from their eyes so they can truly grasp what life can be like? No.

In the meantime, I guess I'll just have to keep giving them gentle reminders to be thankful and be ready for questions that I really can't answer when they wonder why someone has to live like that.