Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Thinkergirl

I'm trying to decide what it is about sitting in front of my computer that makes me draw a mental blank. I'm sure my ADD tendencies have something to do with it - "oh look there is something in my email inbox," "think I'll just hop over to facebook for a moment and see what's new in the last 23 seconds," ..............there's something about sitting in front of my computer that is oddly relaxing but also a major time sucker for me.

I get lost in reading blogs, checking others updated statuses, or the rabbit chase that is Google. I get lost wondering what happened to my ability to think post giving birth to two children?

I want to be the kinda lady that has great follow through -starts a task and finishes it whether it is a blog entry or work or the ever demanding decluttering.

This conversation happened in my house a few weeks ago:

Xman: "Mommy - it would be really cool if we put all my super heros in a blue box, all my imaginext in a red box, and all my star wars stuff in a black box. Then, I could really keep it all organized."

Me: "Xman, that is a great idea. I've got three boxes for under your bed - why don't you start sorting them and then we can color code the outside of the boxes."

Xman: "Mommy - I'm a thinkerboy remember? I'm not a doerboy."

I'm beginning to accept that he gets his "thinkerboy" not "doerboy" from me.

Yes, I confess. I, too, am a thinker girl.



I have great ideas on how to tackle all the chores that exist around the house. I've spent hours researching organization methods to madness. I've read all the recommended books on the subject. However, I can't seem to actually implement and maintain a system.

At all.

I won't bore you with the numerous approaches to allowances, chores, behavior, goals and missions I have begun and not been able to keep up with. 

Perhaps it is because I am consistently distracted by the thinkerboy and the creatingmasterpiecesgirl.

But, being a thinkergirl has its advantages.

Being a thinkergirl makes me an avid reader. I LOVE to read. If I hear about something new on TV or in a magazine, I am quick to request further reading from my library. I know stuff. Maybe not usual stuff - but stuff.  One of my favorite aspects of being a reader is the social applications. I love to chat with the teens I tutor about what they are reading, share with friends about what books feed my heart, my mind, my soul, and my most favorite is to experience literature with my children.

Being a thinkergirl makes me open minded. While I may not agree with others religious, political, educational, etc. stances - I am fascinated to learn what people believe and why.

Being a thinkergirl keeps the "me before children" ever present. While I've grown and changed through parenthood, keeping the learner alive inside has been ever constant.

As I work on my happiness project, my first assignment is to create Twelve Personal Commandments - essentially the overarching principles that define your life (or that you want to define your life).

So, I begin with:

1 - Embrace my inner thinkergirl.

Only eleven more to go.........................

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Happiness Project

A few months ago I was clearing off the table in our kitchen. Again.

I found a stack of pages torn from magazines (my solution to not having more clutter...........tear out the pages I want, recycle the rest). I took the time (surprise!) to sit down and request all the books I had seen in magazines that I wanted to read.

Fast forward to Monday - when I picked up The Happiness Project from the library. Honestly the full title is why I requested the book:

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

 While many claim that you can't judge a book by it's cover (or title) - I will confess that I can. And do. And that title made me laugh. Because that totally sounds like something I would like to do.

Essentially the author says that "I am happy. I have such a good life, I want to appreciate it more. and live up to it better."

The little things that you keep you from being happy throughout the day - the tasks unfinished, the clutter not conquered, the good habits you haven't developed - all take away from your happiness. Even if you are a "generally happy" person.

Much like the author, I'm not unhappy.  In fact, I lead a fabulous life. I have the luxury of staying home with my children most of the time. I have the privilege of working a job that I love. 

I know however that there are many moments throughout my day that I don't look happy. The moments where I can't find something because our home is one large cluttered disorganized mess. The moments where I am yelling at one of the children about something be it a messy room, a misbehavior, or the status of her handwriting. The moments where I am not enjoying the moment to its fullest. Any moment where I am standing in my closet trying to decide what to wear. 

 Like the author, I did expect to outgrow these limitations. I expected that slowly as I became this great big grown up person that I would suddenly have it all together. And be happy. As happy as I could be.

 Since it's uuuuhhhh.........not happening on it's own.

Happiness Project here I come! 

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Just Write

So, I read on a blog today that you should write every day whether you think you have something to say or not.

Looking at the last date entry here - I haven't had anything to say since June 22.

Some days it is that I don't have anything to say, other days it is that I am avoiding saying something specific. Can you get writer's block from avoiding a topic? I'm beginning to think so.

Last night I stayed up WAY too late watching Dateline NBC: The Perils of Parenting. Essentially for a full hour Dateline made parents watch how their kids reacted and what choices they made in all the scenarios that make you worry - bullying, texting while driving, letting strangers in the house, riding with a drunk driver. You know - the little things.

Throughout the entire program I was fixated on Dr. Michelle Borba "parenting expert."

Stop - Hold up - How in the hell do you become a parenting expert? Was there a class offered that I missed?

This woman even has her own website. REALLY?

Our preacher has been talking lately about how he thinks the next generation has had enough of the way things are. The status quo. The "do as I say, not as I do" type parenting of today. He feels that they are going to rise up and be the next spiritual leaders.

I hope so.

But, I really do wonder.

Don't get me wrong. I've met some good kids. I've even met some great kids. I've met kids who are going to change the world they live in. Kids are who are more Godly, more passionate, more creative and more energetic than I could ever hope to be.

But, I also have met a lot of kids who are...........not. Not fired up about anything. Not responsible for anything. Not concerned about - anything.

Maybe I'm not hanging out in the right places, but I've met more of the later than the former. 

These are the kids who let another kid bully someone right in front of them. Without ever speaking up. These are the kids who text while they drive - with no concern for me or my children's safety, not to mention their own. These are the kids who ride with a drunk driver simply because.

These are the kids that are on dateline. These are the kids that are on the news. These are the kids that shop at my Walmart, work at my McDonalds (and I use the term work very loosely), and hang out in my malls.

So, the true question is - how do we raise a kid whose Godly, passionate, energetic, fired up?

Is this the question that the ol' parenting expert can answer?

She's written some books - perhaps I should start with this one or maybe this one instead?