Monday, December 26, 2011

A Left Over Ham Sandwich And A Blog

          The halls have been decked, I was pretty darn jolly, I wore all my gayest apparel (even ask the kids ha). There's left over ham in the fridge (minus the piece on the sandwich I'm eating), and Christmas is over fa la la la la! If you're like me you have a lot of anticipation about Christmas early on. The day after Thanksgiving, I was decorating my tree and listening to Christmas music. I even downloaded some new songs…loved the new Michael Buble and Shania Twain’s version of White Christmas (oops a little ADD there). But I had a fun month of getting ready for Christmas.
           By the twenty first of December though, I start stressing full throttle. I have practiced this Christmas tradition for many years so I'm really good at it! Am I going to get all done? Do I have the same amount of gifts, value wise and number wise for the people coming to Christmas Eve? I start thinking of what I’m cooking, and whether I have all the ingredients for sure? Ice, oh ya, ice, for the drinks cooler, Cool Whip for the pie…darn I forgot that…and my car, do I have gas in it to go to church? I do, but I have to clean out all the junk out in the far back seat, so people can sit way back there. I can think of more stuff to stress about, than you have time to read!
          The blessed day arrives on the 24th  when everyone gets here, the food is all in the oven, and we are ready to go to church. This year we went an hour early to church because theres 5000 members at the new Mission we go to; that’s a lot of people already, besides all the extra family they would bring. I knew it would fill up fast and I didn’t want to sit in overflow, so we went that early. I justify to the kids, you stand in line for a concert so it's about time we stand in line for church. They were happy campers about it, everyone just visited and it went by fast. Shortly after I sat down, I started thinking about my scalloped potatoes bubbling over and starting a fire, or smoking up the house, (I am so much like my Mom sometimes, I can’t believe it myself).  I forgot we'd be standing there an we'd be gone two hours rather than an hour. Other years we've gone for one hour and the potatoes are just getting to the bubbling over stage when we get home. Sitting there, I reason with myself next…. I did put a cookie sheet under them... just in case they bubbled over...they should be fine...don't let that destract you.  

          The service was amazing as I expected, but I won’t lie, I thought about those potatoes twenty or twenty five times at least!  With my car full of talkative, spirit filled kids, we drove home. I was rather quiet consummed with potato thoughts. I crossed the railroad tracks. Secretly, I was glad to see no billowing smoke in the direction of my house…and pulling into the yard the tree was lit and the lights were clear and shining. Whew…doesn’t look smokey in there…and once inside it smelled good, like Christmas Eve should...thank you God! They had bubbled over onto the cookie sheet and looked perfectly brown and delicious!
          I enjoyed every single minute of the two days of Christmas with the kids…the gifts, the games, the prayers the laughter, and the joking.  When everyone went home and the door closed, the door closed on Christmas too in my mind, and you know what?  I’m ready for it. I feel good about how it went, I felt happiness about having the kids go home with new sheets for their beds, and some other things they each needed. I’m thankful God provides for our needs… and some wants as well.
          So now what? I shrink at the idea of New Year’s resolutions. I’m not very good at those; matter of fact admitting I have one to anyone, has proven to be a sure recipe for disaster! I do better if I think small and try and build on that. Last year I started this blog because of some books I got from Kathy, (my sister) and her kids. She sent me a book called and And She Sparkled, knowing I’d had a rough last few years.
         I did a lot of things last year to change some things that I was in control of that were bothering me…I finished my bathroom, I redid the laundry room and the pantry, took more classes, and  moved myself up on the page of people I take care of.  Best of all, I GOT A HORSE AGAIN…and Stetson has brought me back to my authentic, real self I was before marriage and kids. I got my Dad’s saddle oiled and redone at Brays Saddlery in Minot, ND., and what joy I get riding in it, and seeing it daily. Don't read into this that im going back to horse shows and barrell racing I'm not that delusional ... just riding for fun.  
         When I say start small with our goals, I mean start small. We don’t need to set ourselves up to be another Mother Teresa. We weren’t all meant to accomplish all that!  She didn’t have a family of her own. We are called to do what we can, where we can. Maybe we can start by simply redefining what richness is? Some of the richest people in the world are those that invest in family and love.  You can do the most good in the world starting with your own family, and circling out from there. I really believe that. There is a saying that is one of my favorites…I have it on a shirt that goes:
One hundred years from now
It won't matter
What kind of car I drove
What kind of house I lived in
How much money I had in the bank
Or what my clothes looked like
The world may be a little better
Because, I was important
In the life of a child.

             It’s so true. The real lasting difference is one we can make in childrens lives. How we parent, teach or befriend a child, will affect what kind of parents, teachers and caretakers they will be to the next generation. Of course, I know this is simplified, but I really like it. I also urge you to include yourself on the list, and wish kind things for yourself when you’re working on that radiating circle of love for everyone else.
                I have no big new plans for 2012 other than to keep doing what I am doing.  Living an examined life, not taking  my life or the life of those around me for granted, enjoying new experiences with my family and friends, get more involved at the mission and take time to relax my mind and body (relaxing my mind is almost next to impossible… big task).
             I did not accomplish my weight loss goal again last year, and if I have any regrets in my life it’s that I can’t get that obstacle in my rear view mirror and keep it there!  I’m mad at myself for that, that I let one more year go by being a fat person. I have given so much of my life to that. It’s not about vanity for me, it’s about health.  I have no idea how I’m going to accomplish it again this year,  but when I think of riding my horse and balancing 100 pounds of dog food or something up there I think, oh my gosh, how much better and how much less effort it would take for me to ride if I dumped the dang dog food!  Will that thought be enough to make me do it, I don’t know, I wish I could assure you it would. But, if I  am going to really treat myself like I would other people, I’d say don’t let your past define your future and keep trying, so that’s my plan for me too. I’m going to keep working on Stetson too, he has made so much progress in the last few months and I hope next year I can victoriously claim that he’s  a well broke horse now and take pride in all my work with him, and that I dumped the dog food along the way ha.
                I think it’s time we get ready for a great start to a New Year! I’m planning to pack up the Christmas cds and break out Auld Lang Syne, buy some sparkling cider and wish you all a Happy New Year!

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