Choosing to see the extraordinary of "ordinary"

Category Archives: My People

I am a girl.  People’s words change my mood.  Case in point, I came to work today in a perfectly good mood.  One of the guys at work then told me it looked like I had painted my jeans on.  “Hahaha!” he guffaws and then asked if it was difficult to get them all the way up.

My mood changed.

But I have a better story.  Sometimes grown up people can be stupid and insensitive (even men who should know not to comment on females’ weight).  But yesterday, it was a little man who made my day and changed my mood with his words…two words.

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I was rushing around in the normal Wednesday manner.  Wednesdays are not bad, just busy.  I work until early afternoon, teach piano until early evening, go home for supper and a quick spin around and then usually attend church at night.  I wasn’t in a bad mood yesterday, far from it.  It was just the normal Wednesday busy.

I had finished piano and was walking out to the car talking to my sister.  My two nephews were toting things to the car for me, and we all stopped there to finish the conversation before I left.  Seven year old Caleb stood near me.

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Totally engrossed in my conversation with Christy, I blurted out, “Oh, and I sold two more things on Etsy today!”  Caleb stood near me.  And he said with little man enthusiasm, “Good job!”

Good job.  Why those two words meant so much to me, I don’t really know.  But I literally have tears running down my cheeks now thinking about it.  (I might still be emotional over being told I was fat today, who knows.)  Anyway, a little man, kind of being ignored while his aunt and mom chatted, was excited for me.

And he told me, “Good job.”

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So, we have a yearly tradition, the nieces, nephews, husband and me.  At Christmas-time, we take all of them from my side (ten total) out for something fun and then to our house for a slumber party and Christmas movies.  This started way back when there were three or four of them old enough to go on the adventure.  (And for some reason, I can’t find any pictures of those far-back adventures.)  Anyway, suffice it to say, this is a long-standing tradition.

We started it by going to the free carriage rides at Bradley Fair.  ‘Twas a delightful Christmas tradition – bundled up under blankets in a carriage (even though that carriage was tooling around a parking lot) and then singing Christmas songs at the top of our lungs on the way home and then watching White Christmas or some such movie.

But as the group has grown and seeing that there are six of them under the age of nine, standing in line in the freezing weather for a four minute carriage ride, well, let’s say it went out the window after last year.  It was fun, but a little on the…well, we’ll just leave it with it just going out the window.  The memories will live in our hearts though.

This Christmas time, we had to do something, and I got the fabulous idea of going to a trampoline park.  Yes, a huge warehouse-type room completely filled with a trampoline floor.  Alas, we can’t just shell out that kind of money, so the idea was coupled with, “Hey, let’s make it the birthday present for all the nieces/nephews for the year!”  And thus began our Christmas/birthday bouncy bash.

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We had a grand time bouncing and flipping and crawling out of foam pits and playing bouncy bombardment (dodge ball).  And even though my attempted back flip landed me upside down with my feet over my head and sent me to the chiropractor in the days following, the time, I think, was a success.

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It cracked me up to go back through and see AAAALLLLLL the pictures of Grace jumping and throwing dodge balls.  I tried it; it takes some coordination, and, apparently, she had it DOWN.

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And then we went back to the house for Christmas movies and food and a sleepover.  But more on that part some other time.

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October starts the beginning of birthday season in my side of the family.  Mom, Ellie, Cody and Aaron are October/November; about half the family is December; and January/February has a smattering of celebrations.  (January/February also starts Caleb’s family birthday season.)  Anyway, to keep our sanity, we combine seasonal or monthly birthdays, not that we don’t like celebrating, but, as I said, to keep our sanity.

But even with seasonal celebrations, we still manage to get individual celebrations sneaked in there.  They are relaxes and usually just a part of the family.

So, Ellie decided for her 10th birthday, she wanted a sleepover with her cousins, aunts, sister, mom and grandma.  The sweetheart…she invited old people to her birthday sleepover.  (And, no mom, I’m not just referring to you in that statement.)

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We had a for real, girls sleepover with movies and sharing your old bed with your sister kind of sleepover.  And seeing that it was on Halloween night and after our church’s Fall Harvest Festival, candy was a’plenty.

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Then, Cody’s birthday was the next day.  The Tracey and Tim asked the man an’ me if we wanted to go out for pizza and bowling in honor of the little guy.  Seeing that we love pizza and bowling (and since their family isn’t too bad to hang out with 🙂 ), we gladly accepted.

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Yes, ’tis a busy and hectic time of the year, but I am glad for the moments we can stop running around like chickens with our heads cut off and simply enjoy sleepovers and pizza and bowling with family.

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Ok, so the blessings have been piling up.  Good thing too, seeing that I haven’t posted in an eternity.  I REEALLY need to be more consistent or less busy or something…

(Not that I’m complaining about busyness or that it’s out of control.  I’m beginning to get severely annoyed with the typical response to the question of “How’s it going?”  “Ooooh, you know, BUSY” with a self-sacrificing, martyr-like smile.  Yes, I’m guilty of this as much as anybody, but really, we all need to stop.  Either stop being BUSY or stop acting like we have no control over it or stop acting like it’s a symbol of self worth.  Ummm, wait did I really step on that soap box?  Where was I?)

Oh, the piled up blessings, that’s right.  I shall choose one and save the rest for later. Eeny, meeny, miney, moe – and I don’t have a clue how to spell the aforementioned.

Friday evening at mom and dad’s house.  Yes, ’twas a delightful evening.  My Man and I had gotten back from a short vacation a couple days before, and we were enjoying the remainder of the week off.  Mom called and asked if we wanted to come over for supper.  “Why, YES, that would be marvelous!”

Sos, we went.  And we had steak and potatoes and all the marvelous sides.  You see, mom is old school (not saying that she’s OLD mind you, just old school).  With any meal, with family or friends alike, you must, you simply MUST have a main dish (with potatoes if appropriate), a salad, a vegetable, a dessert, and anything else that comes to mind.  Our arguments of “but mom, potatoes ARE the vegetable” or “there are vegetables in the salad!” fell on deaf ears.  You MUST have each thing individually.

Not only did we eat marvelously, we sat outside in the cool autumn evening on their newly built patio area in the back yard, with candles and fireplace a blazing.  And we visiting over coffee and baked apples and roasted marshmallows and huddled under blankets big enough to fit a king size bed.

There’s home – the place you want to sleep in your own bed at and decorate and hang out.  And there’s HOME – the place that will forever be where you grew up and where your parents will always be waiting and feeding you meat and potatoes and salads and a vegie and a dessert or two.

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This past weekend, our entire family went on sort of a trip together and had a doggone good time.  Some friends have a house and land about an hour away, and they kindly let us use it for a few days to play and relax and make memories.

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And, let me tell you, we did all those things.  And when I mean the entire family, I mean the ENTIRE family.  Yes, Grace managed to get a ride from college and surprise us all.  It was delightful to have her there!

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It was SUCH a great weekend.  We cooked and ate and laughed together.  (And, yes, My Wonderful Man cooked too…an impressive thing in our family.)

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We shot clay pigeons and had a turkey shoot and shot guns just about every chance there was.

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There was a whole lot of shootin’ going on.

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Some people fished and swam in the river.  (I was anti-river swimming myself, especially when Cody found a leach on his leg.  Blech)

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We road Tim’s four wheeler and roasted marshmallows and hotdogs by the fire.  We played games and took naps; we stayed up late and told stories.  The weekend fleeeeeew by, and we decided that this needs to be an annual thing.

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I am blessed with a fabulous family, yes indeedy, I am blessed.

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