Monday, November 21, 2005

Thanksgiving Week Already?????

How did that happen? Ever since the kids came, the days just seem to fly by. It seems like we were just putting the tree out from last Christmas and here it is already Thanksgiving. I am of course thinking of what I am thankful for and my thoughts wonder to my boys school. As I mentioned before, Tom was hit by a boy in his class. This poor little guy was then suspended in 1st Grade. What does this have to do with gratitude? The school, the school family and how they handled this still amazes me. Tom never skipped a beat. He could have been pretty upset and quite honestly concerned about returning to the school. Instead, because of the grace and love with which the school handled this, he feels safe and loved. They are working on a plan to help their classmate return to school and are hoping that he will become a part of the solution. They are teaching the children how to help him with that. Amazing!! I could not ask for more. What a teachable moment for everyone.

Friday, November 18, 2005

I see sunshine on a cloudy day . . .

Okay, so this has not been a stellar day. My plans (what a joke) were really done at 4:15 this morning.

It all started with poor David, my 3 year old, who kept waking up to go potty. He would dribble a little pee and back to sleep for 5 minutes, just long enough for me to get into my zone and then he was back again. Finally he went number 2 and he was back asleep (that was 5:30). So I was exhausted when the alarm went off, but we persisted.

I dropped the boys off at school (I let the teacher know David had a rough nights sleep so he might be a bit cranky) and I was off to my special morning of coffee with fellow moms from school. I had been looking forward to this, and I felt honored to be invited. I barely got in the door of the hostess' home when the phone rang, it was the school. David was not well, he needed mom. So it was home with David. We really had a nice time. We snuggled and watched TV. He never napped but he definitely rested.

Then it was time to pick up Tom. It took David less that one song on the radio to be asleep. He was exhausted and really needed the nap so I sat in the parking lot of the school for an hour while he caught up on his sleep. It was here, in the parking lot, that I introduced myself to a parent of a new boy in school. I let them know that if they had any questions, to call me I would be happy to meet them. I suggested we could have our boys could play together. It was then that I found out the reason they were there. They were called in to discuss the fact that their son punched my son in the nose. Hmm. We talked briefly, and I let them know that our family would pray for their family as they worked through these struggles.

Of course I woke David up so we could go in and find out how my little boy was doing. The good news is that Tom handled himself beautifully. He was shocked and did not punch him back. Tom really does have a gentle spirit. The teacher also is amazing. She really took care of Tom and so did the class. There were kids telling Tom jokes to cheer him up and two boys made him cards. There really is a little family developing there.

My heart is full. I see the blessings in all of this. I spent a great day with David (lots of snuggling happening in the Allen household). I heard about the environment in Tom's class that is what I have always wanted for him. I kept my head on straight through out all of this. What didn't happen is almost as important. I did not get angry at my guys for my plans being ruined. I didn't spend a day in misery and depression over "my lot in life." I didn't feel the need to complain, I really enjoyed the change of pace. It was awesome. I am grateful and praise God when I know I am growing like this. For me I know it can only be a "God Thing" because I am not able to do this by myself.

It's great when I can see the sun through the storms.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Stop and smell the coffee . . .

Or at least drink it. Today was my day to rejuvenate. After getting the boys settled in to their respective schools, I headed of to my bi-weekly mastermind group. A think-tank we created of a few crazy people like myself who want to be self-employed. At our meeting we share issues, concerns and challenges, and then we help each other solve them. So over coffee we are building each other up and solving our problems. What a blast!!

Then I was off to my lunch meeting with a fellow mom of a boy in my son's 1st grade class. I have made a conscious decision to surround myself with successful people who are thinking forward, bright and filled with the energy I see in life. This mom is such a mom. It was also a great boost in the arm. It's amazing how much we had to talk about. The time just flew by.

Next I was off to my home office to check on some emails, do a little paper work and get the house ready for the day. Low and behold, when I checked my email I received this great email. I hope you find it a light in a somewhat dim world. Thank you Janis!

In April, Oprah interviewed Maya Angelou on her 70+ birthday. Oprah asked her what she thought of growing older. And, there on television, she said it was "exciting." Maya Angelou also said this: "I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow. I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights." "I've learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life. "I've learned that making a "living" is not the same thing as "making a life." "I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance. "I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw some things back." "I've learned that when ever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision." "I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one." "I've learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back." "I've learned that I still have a lot to learn." "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."

Friday, November 11, 2005

An Evening of R & R - Where do I sign up???

We just had a pretty productive Parent's Association meeting and at the meeting we decided to plan an event that would serve both as a fund raiser and outreach to the moms of our kids. I got so excited I offered to help, and thus Becca and I became the coordinators of this event. So what was I thinking? It was purely selfish. I really want this event to happen so if you really want something to happen, you might as well do it yourself.

The idea is to have an evening of relaxation. We will have substantial hor dourves, and some spa like activities there as well as some vendors that will nourish the soul. It is a soft fund raiser geared toward creating a community. We hope to bring out the moms that normally don't participate, to enjoy a night out without the kids. Wish us luck. And, if you are reading this and have done something like this, feel free to offer suggestions. If you were to come out to an evening of relaxation, what would you like to be there.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Monday, My Day of Reflection

It seems to have worked out that Monday is my day off. Although I am never really off, I choose not to schedule appointments, and I try to be available to handle things that have fallen to the way side. I also use this day for a long shower and reflection. Hmm, I love long showers.

When I think back over the weekend I feel content. It was busy, yet rewarding. There were several highlights:

  • An impromptu play date for my boys with some kids they love at the local tumble spot. That allowed their mom and I to sit, relax and catch up. We are both busy, and as providence would have it, her youngest slept for two glorious hours while we solve the world's problems and our boys conquered new territories. All in all, it was a great afternoon. A side benefit was we were out of my husband's way. He really needed to work on his sister's car, and we tend to distract him.

  • Sunday was church. I woke up with a headache that was not letting up and looking for an excuse to stay home. I was scheduled to work with the two-year olds. I was all set to call in when my 3-year old said "Mom, look God healed my boo boo." So with Advil in tow, I was off to church. It turned out to be great morning.

  • That afternoon our school was having an open house, and of course, I agreed to help out. It was a gorgeous day outside. I did not think it would be busy so I would be home quickly. Well, let me tell you, they were lined up out side the doors. It was great to be there. I was able to share what the school has done for me and my boys. I cannot imagine them going anywhere else. The school appreciated my help and it was good to remember what it felt like when we were first trying to make a decision on school

  • The evening was relaxing. It consisted of reruns of Good Eats, ice cream and a little paper work for the Parent's Association.

It was a great weekend, and I feel blessed to be able to share. For me I see the balance really taking hold in my life. The calculated decision to be careful about what obligations I choose and then do them when I say I will. The ability to be present with my family. The ability to be present when I am not with my family. I really see it all coming together. I feel like I am growing up. Or as Hannibal used to say in the A-Team "I love it when a plan comes together."

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Having My Cake and Eating it Too

Yes, being a mom is rewarding. I get the kisses and I love yous. Tonight my 3-year old said to me "Mom, you're the bestest cook ever." And that was over a cup of tomato soup. And my other son who is 6 tells me I am his best friend.

And if it doesn't get better than that, I get to be a business owner as well. I help take care of my clients, consult and teach and schmooze with abandon.

Now, I am not saying life is perfect. I have my share of glitches. I am a work in progress. The good news is that I am stopping to smell the roses while I pick up the garbage. We all have stuff to deal with. In fact, I heard a great quote at a meeting the other day that truly spoke to me. A client of ours heard it at a conference from a man in a wheel chair who was dealing with the challenges he is facing. He said: "Pain and suffering are inevitable, misery is an option." Wow.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

The tooth fairy is coming to our house for the first time!!!

Yes, Thomas lost his first tooth. I just knew it was going to be today. I remember worrying this morning "what if Tom swallows it by accident?" Quite frankly I could not see what was holding it in place. When I got home from my appointments, I was excited to get a message from Tom's teacher about how it happened. She was so excited and filled with joy as she described how and when it happened I could almost picture it happening. And you should have seen Tom telling anyone who slowed down near him. So tonight we placed the tooth under his pillow. As always, Thomas says, "Mom, I know dad is the Tooth Fairy." I just shrugged my shoulders and looked confused. He's too smart for his age. We enjoy pretending with him. And he knows it's pretend.