Monday, April 26, 2010

"The Talk"

     Earlier today one of my daughters and I were at Costco eating churros(not me, though, I'm following my diet very carefully) and drinking a latte mocha freeze (a diet coke for me, however).She mentions that one of her friends has not had "The Talk" yet with her mother. This piques my attention. I respond:

"I haven't had 'The Talk' with you, either."

"Yes you have."

"I have?! When!?"

"Like at the breakfast table when I was seven. And you gave me a book!"

"Really?!" I burst out laughing. "What did I say?"

"Oh you know, just all that stuff" was her curt, wave-of-the-hand response.

     So we proceeded to talk about "all that stuff" somewhat and about my approach to "The Talk." My first thought, though, was what kind of mother am I that I didn't even KNOW that I had "The Talk" with my second-born daughter? Yikes! As I thought more about it I realized that my approach is a  more casual one regarding informing my daughters about physiological changes their bodies will go through during puberty and about sexuality. I've always used correct terms for body parts and was very matter- of- fact about "how babies are made" but have always tried to give as few details as necessary. This all depended on the age of the child, their questions, or how the topic got brought up. I definitely don't give graphic details, and yet I inform them of the basics. Again, my approach is limited, accurate information in a matter-of-fact way. More than anything I've always tried to be relaxed, yet informative and approachable. I want my daughters to know that they can talk to Mom about puberty, body parts, sex, boys, etc. I've always tried to not "freak out" about those topics.
     Tim is quite different, however, and has a hard time with the fact that all of his daughters will be needing bras and menstruating one day. "OH, NO! STOP TALKING ABOUT THAT!" he'll shriek as he's cringing out of the room. I can't help but laugh at how God has a sense of humor. Six daughters...ha ha ha!
     However, after we returned  home from Costco today the topic of dating came up. One daughter said:

"So- and -So can date when she's 16."

I replied, "Well, I don't think dating at 16 is a good thing."

"Why not? I don't think there's anything wrong with it."

Uh-oh. Time to remember not to freak out, get I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris and have another "Talk." These talks really vary throughout the years and seem to be getting more complicated. God help me!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Thank You, Tim!

     I arrived home just minutes ago from an overnight getaway by myself that Tim kindly encouraged me to take. Thank  you, Tim! As I walked through the front door I started laughing. The house was a real d*i*s*a*s*t*e*r. Lights were left on, the fan was on, clothes were all over the living and dining room floor, but there was a game of Twister on the floor that hasn't been out for years. And a load of laundry running in the washing machine. Good for Tim.
     I arrived, of course, to an empty home. On purpose. I had to ease back into being at home after having been gone for about 30 hours. I so enjoyed the peace and quiet. Tim is teaching my Spanish class at our home school co-op classes at church right now. He's never had my job for a whole, uninterrupted 30 hours before. The look of relief on his face when he sees I'm home a little early will be p*r*i*c*e*l*e*s*s. Later on, we're all going to my Dad's for dinner. So, I had the chance to jump on the computer, check my e-mail, type up this blog post, and try to tackle sorting out my messy closet in my bedroom before Tim and the kids come home.

     Tim's dad, Don, invited Tim and I to this black tie affair at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills Hotel on May 1st where he's being honored at some shin dig. Do I need to mention that I have nothing to wear? Black tie affair? Tim and I are not "black tie affair" kind of people. But, I love beautiful places, interesting people, and fancy food. It should be - well, perhaps not fun, as in Disneyland fun, but very interesting. I'll provide a report on the event later. Adios for now.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Back on the Weight Loss Wagon Again

     My enthusiasm for losing weight at the beginning of December was derailed. In fact, after learning how to make yeast breads, I gained weight! I was dismayed at how heavy I had become and how I have stayed at that weight. I still enjoy making tasty, nutritious bread for my family and friends, but I need to figure out how to acquire more self-control when that bread is baking and I have to take it from the oven piping hot and fresh. Yep - a real challenge, but not beyond my determination to figure out how to manage this new temptation.
     In reality, I hate talking about weight loss, diets, body issues, etc. REALLY HATE IT. My weight has fluctuated so much throughout my life and is such a source of discouragement that I tend to avoid the topic all together. Writing about it seems easier.
     So, I've come to the conclusion that I am a statistical norm. And statistically speaking, people who lose weight and keep it off have the following traits in common:
1) They weigh themselves frequently - like everyday or every couple of days.
2) They write all their food intake down in a journal.
3) They exercise about an hour a day.
4) They lose weight with a friend and have ongoing accountability.
5) They are quick to get "back on track" when they've blown it.
6) They let friends and family know that they are trying to lose weight.
     These are the things I  need to do regularly if I'm going to have success in long term weight loss and maintenance. How could I think I could do it any other way than how most people do it successfully? I'm not special, unique, or different. Although I do have a tendency to be a statistical abnormality in some ways and have been labeled "different" by people throughout the years, these weight loss rules apply to me.
     Having a new I -Touch with the "Lose It" application is very helpful in terms of having a food journal and calculator with me everywhere I go. Also, having a pedometer is very motivating as well. The goal for most people is 10, 0000 steps per day. I aim for 14, 000 but rarely reach it. My sophisticated pedometer (on clearance at Target - whoo hoo!) also gives me my calories burned for the day. I feel inspired to walk more and move more just to see how close I can get to my goal.  As far as the other guidelines for success, I have those covered for now.
     Anyway, I'm making another effort at leading a healthy lifestyle to glorify God and be as useful and effective for him as I can be. Pray for me!

Friday, April 9, 2010

I Don't Get Out Much - And Maybe That's A Good Thing...

Elena had fun at her concert last night. So, tonight was another concert that I took her, Camille, and their friend Madeline to at the Roxy in West Hollywood. This is not a place I usually frequent (ever), but I was going to support some boys from church, The Graves, (check out this song - it's so catchy!) who were playing in front of some record executives. The bigger the crowd, the more impressive for the record executives. I've known these boys since they were babies, the twins, Chris and Kevin, and then their younger brother, Sean, since before he was born. So, I was happy to go and see them in concert. They had some really fun, entertaining songs. They have an engaging sound and Sean, as lead singer, has a dynamic stage presence. I was enjoying myself  - and then I went to the bathroom.

I was standing in front of the sink in the tiny, dirty, ugly bathroom reapplying lip gloss when these two older teenage-looking girls walk in. The one girl went into the stall while the other girl stood in the door threshold, quite close to where I was standing (small bathroom) and asked me, "Are you on a date?"
"No," I replied, capping my lip gloss and shaking my head.
Her next statement: "Are you LOOKING for something? Are you SEARCHING for something?" The way this girl said it, bracing herself in the narrow doorway and leaning her upper body toward me, opening her eyes really wide, and speaking in a rather, well, seductive voice made me wonder about two things: 1) she's on drugs, isn't she? and 2) is she, uh,  hitting on me?! Say it isn't so! Is she looking for the "Mommy"type? EEEUUUWWWW!!!!! I think perhaps that she was just messing with me. I wanted to reply, "Yeah, I'm looking for something - the toilet - so I can puke!"

My response? Almost without thinking, "I have Jesus and he's all I need." At that she laughed nervously and loudly, obviously uncomfortable. And then I looked right at her and said, "And he loves you." With that I turned and left the bathroom -  TOTALLY. FREAKED.OUT.
     I mean, we were in West Hollywood, but I never expected to get hit on by some girl young enough to be my daughter. I later thought, Maybe she was making fun of me. That's it. She was mocking me! But I've learned not to "over think" or doubt those initial impressions I have about these kinds of situations. My intuition is usually right on. I can count on one hand the number of times I've been propositioned in my whole life (at least what I can remember. I really don't care about these kinds of things.)This isn't something I'm used to or look for. Really. Besides, I have a really cute husband! We have lots of fun together. Enough said.

What a strange night. I bet her mother didn't tell her not to do drugs before she left home.
But then, I went to the bathroom by myself. A big no-no, apparently even for adults! (At least in WeHo!)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Elena's First "Big Girl" Concert
She just called me from the Fox Theater in Pomona to say that her cell phone didn't charge properly and that she might need to use her friend's cell phone later to check in with me. "No problem, " I say as I tell her to have a fun time. Before she left earlier I got a little nervous about this band she was going to see with a 21 year old friend and two of her best friends. This is the extent of the drug "education" I have given my eldest daughter:
 "Don't do drugs, OK?" She looks at me with her classic Give me a break, Mom look and I smile at her.
  "Don't talk to strange boys, either, OK? I mean, don't be rude, but you don't have to be that friendly either, OK?" And again, Give me a break, Mom. "And don't go to the bathroom by yourself. Go with one of your friends, OK?"
"I will Mom."

     Can you feel my worry? My fear? My anxiety? I didn't think so. It's not really there. Not much, that is. My eldest, Elena, is one of the most responsible, mature, level-headed young ladies I know. I think she's a great kid and I cherish her dearly. I also really like her. She is a very intelligent, perceptive, kind person who has a dry sense of humor. She also giggles a lot around boys she likes. (At least I think she likes them. She has never revealed liking any of them. "That's fine," I tell her. "Stay away from all the boys till you're out of college and like, 24." She gives me another one of her looks Are you serious, Mom?

     At any rate, she will be introduced to the world of loud music and curious-looking and acting people. The band is a fairly benign Christian-like band. Or something like that. Again, I'm not worried and when she comes home, we'll talk about it. I'll ask her about all the weirdos she saw. "Was anyone making out in front of you? Because you should have definitely looked away!" I can anticipate the look now Are you serious, Mom? Or, maybe she will have some intriguing stories. I know she'll tell me and we'll laugh about all sorts of things.
     And then I'll ask her, "You stayed away from drugs, right?" And then the look, Give me a break, Mom!
Yep - that's what I thought. That's my girl.
But I have been praying for her - like all night long. When did she say she'd be home?

Monday, April 5, 2010

Another Post About Babies, Etc.

     Really, though, I have very little to say these days in the blogosphere. Easter was lovely. My big crowd was a little smaller than I originally expected - about 21 or so people. It was enjoyable spending time with my stepbrother Ethan's wife Ashley. They had their 5th baby about 4 months ago and she is adorable. Of course, I love talking about child birth stories and we did! Her last labor was surprisingly more difficult than she had anticipated. "Um, yeah, sometimes that happens..." At any rate,  I gave her some suggestions for avoiding some of the problems she had with this last delivery. That is, of course, if they decide to have another baby. This 5th baby of hers, much like mine was, is easy. That frequently makes a woman more likely to seriously consider having another baby.
     In fact, because Daisy was fairly easy and I didn't feel quite done, I decided to have Julia. Well, lo and behold, just like I anticipated, she has been challenging. Her demeanor is fairly mellow, but her energy level is sky high! She never stops moving. My brother nicknamed her "D.T." - for '"Domestic Terrorist." Tim and I agreed, however, that Chloe was even more challenging at that age. My brother shook his head in disbelief. Ha! Julia, being very active and a rotten sleeper (bless her sweet little unsleepy self) has cured me of wanting another baby. I am permanently done with pregnancy concerns- yeah! - and have no struggle whatsoever with regret or a longing for another baby. Had I not had Julia, however, I probably would have wondered and longed for that 6th child. And a small part of me really wanted to enjoy my last pregnancy and childbirth knowing it was my last; "The best laid plans of mice and men..."  And yet God is my Redeemer, my Provider, my Friend, and an all-wise, all- knowing God. And he has a sense of humor.
     And so, currently I'm trying to tie up all the loose ends on a mother and daughter retreat that my church is putting on at the end of April. I had forgotten that I had volunteered in the fall to "help out." So, of course, that means coordinating the whole thing! Uh, is this what I signed up for? I assembled an amazing group of women at church to help with all the little details I'm not good at. So, it hasn't been that bad. My favorite part is the goody bags I'm assembling. That's been lots of fun.
     And I only have 8 weeks left of the school year....Ahh...I can't wait!