Monday, April 25, 2011

What a difference a day makes...

Benji likes his new haircut. What do you think? ;-)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Easter

We are looking forward to a beautiful Easter here in DC. The forecast calls for warm sunshine and that makes me so happy.

I've been thinking about my Mom as we approach this blessed day.  Mom dying on Christmas Day was sort of "bizarro world" or something for me. After all, on Christmas Day we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child and it's traditionally a day of joy and celebration of new life. I know in many ways that her death was an entry into new life so it should make more sense to me, but it is what it is. I don't know how I can ever know another Christmas without some sense of mourning.

Which brings us to Easter. The three days leading up to Christ's death and then his rising on Easter are much more aligned to the mourning that I mentioned. On some level I know that when Mom was dying, her suffering and pain (and ours to watch her decline) were relatively small in relation to what Christ went through for us. But it still hurts terribly to think about that time.

Mom was a faith filled person though, and so am I. Which makes me sense that the joy of this Easter will feel more intense and beautiful than any I've ever known. I know I'll sense her presence, and feel her spirit rising which is a wonderful feeling.

This Easter too I have the unexpected pleasure of being able to join our Church choir in singing a peice of music that I've loved since I sang it in high school. It's called the Vivaldi Gloria.  I've gone to several rehearsals and something about singing with a choir again is awakening in me a part of my "self" that has been asleep for a long time.

This probably won't make sense, but I keep thinking of "imprinting".  Imprinting is a term that describes how animals decide "who they are".  I think that my early connection to singing in really good choirs through school imprinted in me a real comfort--a sense of fit. I feel so comfortable standing and holding music, breathing correctly, sight reading, listening to blend well, counting measures and following a good conductor 

But when I think about the things I've learned as an adult, I don't feel like those things come to me so automatically. Take Project Management for instance. I am a certified PM and can definitely lead, but I always have to review again how to write a new charter or how to use the tools I'll need. Not with music. It's like second nature.

Makes me want my boys to follow wherever their hearts lead them and give them every opportunity to find their true happiness. Danny already loves music (especially drumming and strumming a guitar) so much. I'm really happy that Su found a fun music class we can all go to for the next few months!

Anyway, I'm sort of rambling now. Sorry. Happy Easter everyone. Hope it's a shiny happy day for you! -Monica

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Our Boys of Summer...

Our two little guys love to be outside now whenever they can. And after a long winter, you'd think I'd be equally as enthusiastic about it, but the truth of the matter is, I don't much like being outside. I never really have.

Maybe it's my fair skin and all those painful sunburns I got as a kid. Or maybe it's the flies and mosquitos in the summer and the crunchy sticks and stuff that falls off trees that make it near impossible for me to comfortably go around with bare feet. I don't know. I just know that I appreciate the cool comfort of the house if I have a choice.

But you know what? Knowing how much the boys love it outside, I'm going to figure out how to love it a little more myself.

After all, Danny and Benji adore being out on the tree swing, and in the sandbox, and running up and down the sidewalk with their little friends so much. And I do love sports, so playing catch or kicking a soccer ball or shooting at our little basketball hoop won't kill me. And chatting with our neighbors is always a pleasure.

Our yard out front is small and abuts a circle which is great in terms of having a pretty low volume of traffic, but who am I kidding? Traffic is traffic and when you have a three year old and a free range toddler outside with no fence, you can't really just relax. At least I can't.

I like to believe that as time goes by I won't feel the need to be quite as vigilant--in fact I'm sure it will get easier for me. (Stop snickering now.)

So where does that leave me? Well, outside with the boys when we have fair weather until I have to be "that" mom who makes them finally come in to eat supper and get ready for bed.

Hmmm...or maybe I can be the mom who stays inside and makes supper while Su stays out with them! Why oh why does she have to be the good cook in the family ;-( -Monica

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Snip and Snails and Salamander Tails...

Danny and the whole family had a great time this weekend hanging out in West Virginia with some friends from our church. Fortunately the rain let up so we got a chance to do some exploring. We asked Danny on the way home though what his favorite part of the trip was though and he said "sleeping in the car on the way home".

Must have forgotten about the thrill of discovering the salamander and spider egg sac as well as his "plunge" into the tiny creek and pretend fishing at the waterfall. But he's probably right about the nap. After a few days out in nature, our little city boy was pretty tuckered out.  Already looking forward to heading out there again! -M

Monday, April 11, 2011

Criticism Catcher

The other night as I was drifting off to sleep I was thinking about how very easy it is for me to criticize people. And you know what? I don't like that I do it one bit.

I like to think I'm pretty sneaky about it though. I mean, I don't say just anything to anyone, and in fact, one strategy that I have is to just share them with Susanne.

How much fun can that be for her?

I also like to think that I find "good" words to say critical things. For example, I'll say that someone is "high strung" instead of saying that they are "annoying", which is really just being critical anyway.

So as I drifted off to sleep that night I imagined a big Dream Catcher to catch all my critical comments before they pop out of my mouth.

I've "caught" 4 pretty mean comments since then.  I like it when imagery works for me. I hope this one sticks! Monica

 P.S. Also, calling a neighbor "crazy "insert name here" is a really bad idea. Cuz remember, three year olds think that that is the person's name and they will tend to say "hi" accordingly!

Monday, April 04, 2011

Uncle Neily

So this weekend Danny stared whining about how he wanted his "Uncle Neily". I thought that was pretty sweet since Uncle lives far away and Danny doesn't see him often. But the more I questioned him the more frustrated he got until I realized that he was telling me that he wanted his "Ukulele". We'd just bought him a real ukulele and he is in love with it. Sorry Danny. I'll try to listen better next time. Oh and Uncle Neily...he wants you too. Time to come for a visit! -M

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Just to clarify...

I showed Danny yesterday's post with the picture he drew of his "favorite animal".  He thought it was great and the best part was that when I asked him if he knew that a pool wasn't an animal he looked at me and said "mom, there's an animal IN the pool".

Apparently there is a monkey in there somewhere. So he says ;-) (Pretty good answer though if I do say so myself!) -M

Friday, April 01, 2011

I'm so proud. I think.

I have a few more months to use the "he's only three" card right? ;-)