Tuesday, September 9, 2014

All That Jazz.

Today was unseasonably cool.
Which was code for "Dear Sweet Jesus - We Need Some Hot Potato Soup" asap.
Gosh I love soup.
Like I have a small obsession or something.
You know it's getting out of hand when you even dream about soup.
No really.
Out of control - right over here.

This past weekend we had free movie channels pop up overnight.
I equate this phenomenon to finding $5 in your winter jacket from last year.
It just kind of happens sometimes.
And it's awesome.
So naturally I DVR'd "The Great Gatsby."
And instead of enjoying the beautiful last days of summer, I watched the beautiful Leonardo DiCaprio while eating hot soup.
It was epic.

I feel like this time of year should make me happy.
The cooler temps.
The scarfs & spectacular new leather coat I splurged on that my husband might just take away my credit card for.
The pumpkins & apple cider.
The soup.
[Did I mention I love soup?]

But I am just going to go ahead & say it.......
I hate fall.
I've tried to like it.
No really. A valiant effort was put forth.
But I just seriously hate it.

It's the end of summer first of all.
S U M M E R.
And the only thing worse than the end of the summer, is the saying:
"All Good Things Must Come To An End."

I want to know right now so I can show up to his house & make my dog Cooper lick him to death.
Whoever you are slogan man - I hate you.

So I was trying to figure out why I dislike Fall so much.
Maybe it's because I know winter is coming.
Maybe it's because school starts. And so starts the chaos of filled schedules & early bedtimes.
The sun sets earlier. The night starts more quickly.
Maybe it's because it's the death of all things alive.
Maybe it's because my sister died in October.
Maybe it's because I literally think Pumpkin Spice Latte's are just plain gross.
[Am I the ONLY person ever to actually say that out loud?]

But I seriously hate fall.
No offense pretty trees. You are lovely & all.

Speaking of school.

I have now discovered why people do not have children 13 months apart.
Forget all the hard work, blood, sweat & tears it takes to do this whole parenting thing.
The REAL reason parents do not have children close together:
is the cost of PRESCHOOL.
I'm going to be some serious kind of broke this year as both my kids have now entered into preschool.
I know it's only going to be a year until my Addie enters Kindergarten.....
AKA the FREE type of school. [Just kidding. I pay good taxes for that kind of school too.]
But this is going to be one crazy type of broke-razz year for us.
Good thing our kids really REALLY like school.
I'd hate to pay so much money for them to go to a place they hated.

Also. Let's talk about the first day pictures.

Parker started his first day [3 year old preschool] today!! :)
[Insert proud Mom smile here.]

And okay - I cried. Some.
Not as much as I thought I would.

I tried to get a picture actually WITH Parker.
This was naturally the end result.

He was thankfully a little more receptive though to selfies & duck faces.

Addison had her first day yesterday.
She wore a dress she picked out herself at the store.
Truth be told, I wasn't crazy about the flower dress.
But apparently when it comes to fashion, my daughter simply dismisses the thoughts of her mother.
I'd probably be more upset about this.
If only I wasn't the same way...... right Mom? :)

I was also emotional about Addison's first day.
But it was more because I didn't get to be there since I was at work.
Don't get me wrong - I'm thankful I got to be there today for Parker's first day.
But missing Addison's first day was pretty much torture.
Missing those small & big moments as a working Mom is pretty much the hardest part of leaving my kids all my day long.
They grow so fast. I just wish I could be front row for everything.
And in some ways, I very much still am.
Because at the end of the day, I hope my kids will always know -
Your Mom Is Your Number #1 Fan. Period. Forever & Ever. Amen.

I texted Hannah & asked for some first day of school pics.
Naturally, this is what my 20 year cousin sent me:)

She did send me more later on.....
Which of course made me thankful for my Hannah & all the ways she is there for my kids.

And also thankful for my amazing Baby Daddy.
Who took one for the team when he spent THREE hours listening to the Superintendent, Principal & Dean of Students go on & on & on about the school.
Sorry I had to miss that........
[Insert Sarcastic Eye Roll.]

And just because we all know what a nightmare first day of school pics can actually be, I thought it was time to post some Horrible Mom Pics.
These are more of the behind the scenes - "here's the nightmare it really was to get that one smiling pic" - type of posts.
AKA - I look REALLY terrible in these.

That last one I call 'What In The SandHill Is Addison Doing?'
Heaven help us.

Here's to being Back To School cool.
While hating Fall.
And eating soup.
Much Love Reader.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A Fake Boyfriend.

First things first, I'm the realest.
And if we're going to be real, I should probably confess:
That one time in 5th grade where I made up a boyfriend for my best friend Dee.

I had my first mature dreamboat boyfriend I had met at summer camp - the place where every girl should have her first romance.
His name was Jesse. And yes Internet, he might have had a slight fro.
I came home sooooo much more mature & happening.....
And since the boy lived hours & hours away from me [much to the delight of my parents] I had really entered into a new relationship with a cute new penpal that wrote to me a few times per month.

Since I had love letters written to me on college ruled paper [way more legit than wide ruled], it was only natural that I wanted Dee to experience the same type of excitement I was having.
A girl can only keep her Lisa Frank notebook to herself for so long.
But how? Where was I going to find this guy?
Boys in the 5th grade are like turtles - come at them too fast & they prefer to stick their head in the sand.
Rather than ask every boy in my class to be a penpal & risk them all questioning my sanity [which I can assure you, they did anyways] I did what any good best friend would do.

I made one up.

I sent Dee love letters. I "disguised" my handwriting.
I wrote & I wrote.
Until it became painfully obvious that I was the one writing the letters.
Dee came to me one day, asking [but still probably knowing] if I was her new mysterious penpal.
My guilt & shame written all over my face. [I was never any good at lying.]
I cannot remember if she laughed or cried that day.
Probably a little bit of both.
For some reason she forgave me.
She only made me promise never to make up a fake boyfriend for her ever again.

A promise I am happy to say, I have kept.

20 years later, I still love Dee.
A friend that I can just pick up right where we left off.
Fake or real boyfriends - there's never any pretending.
I love that. I love her.

Together we got together with a few of the girls we went to high school with.
And hiiiiii - Class of 2002 - you should all come & join us next time.
We may or may not make this an every other month thing.
Because ya know, we're all kind of awesome.
Except that one kid.....
Just kidding. He's invited too.

I've learned that we're all a little different since 2002 when we said goodbye.
But still a little the same too.
I still have this deep need inside me to spread around the love.
So Class Of 2002 - wherever you are - know that I'm sending you some love today.
Me & my fake boyfriend.
No need to call Catfish or MTV though.
We'll stick to snail mail.
And our Lisa Frank notebooks.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Just Friends.

I was at work last week when a brief encounter with a few people I knew who claimed to be "just friends" drummed up an interesting talking point with the ladies I work with:

Can a girl and a guy be just friends?

I posed the question on social media. Also asking several people I know & respect greatly.
And the answers were seriously ALL OVER THE PLACE.
No internet. I cannot make this stuff up.

I think the answers people gave me behind this question depend greatly on someone's personality. And also based off of someone's experiences in the friend zone.
Some people can have great success when it comes to having friends of the opposite sex.
While other people struggle with their friendships immensely for various reasons.

I told myself I was going to think on my answer to this question for a while before answering.
And now that I've had some time to process, I think that it's important to state the obvious.

This is a complete gray zone.

There is no black or white, one size fits all relationship status that will work for every friendship under the sun.
I think different relationships work or don't work for different reasons.

When I was single, my relationships with the opposite sex looked a whole lot different then from when I got married.
I had several close guy friends who I confided in & trusted.
And when you are single, if there comes a time when one person in the friendship wants more than just friendship, you are able to change or altar the relationship to however both people feel.

When I got married however, it wasn't that I stopped caring about my guy friends.
But my relationships with them changed.
Because my husband is my ultimate relationship priority.
And there was never a need any longer to confide in other men.
Out of respect for my husband & for my own personal boundaries, I have very few limited guy friendships.

In my own experience, I personally do not have many guy friends that are not "couple friends."
And by couple friends, I mean you are friends with both the wife & the husband.

Meet Krista & Adam.
I knew Krista before she met Adam.

And I knew Adam before I dated Trevor.
And before Adam dated Krista.

My husband & Adam were roommates before I came along, best friends, and are pretty much as weird & inseparable as it gets. Total bromance style.

I am friends with Adam.
I love him as my friend. I respect him. I think he is a great husband & father.
But outside of my relationship with his wife Krista, I really do not have much contact with him.
We don't text each other. Call one another to see how the other is doing.
I care about Adam greatly.
But I leave all of the deeply personal, emotional, mental, "Hey, how are you really doing?" questions to my husband Trevor to talk with him about.
This again is not because I do not care.
But it's because Adam & I have healthy boundaries that clearly define our friendship & respect our marriages.
The same goes for Krista & Trevor.
This is what contributes to our lifelong friendships with Adam & Krista.

As far as relationships outside of our couple friends, I usually tend to tread lightly.
I want to say it........
Girls & guys can totally be friends.

But honestly, I have seen out there that there usually comes a day where one person wants more.
Even if they don't always admit it or keep it hidden.
Sometimes people can be very good at masking their own true intentions.
Sometimes they don't even admit their true intentions to themselves.

I want to say it........
Girls & guys can totally be friends.

But I have never seen it work effectively in my own life outside of our couple friends.
Which doesn't mean that it cannot work.
I just have never witnessed two people who are honestly "just friends", happily married, & want nothing more.

I am also not sure I would want a whole host of truly platonic guy friends.
Hear me out on this.
I mean. You'd have to be so careful with what you say, how you say it, how close is too close, respecting your spouse, respecting their spouse, honoring healthy boundaries, analyzing their true intentions, making sure your heart is in the right place, not comparing your guy friends to your husband, never complaining about your husband to your guy friends, never putting yourself in compromising situations......and on and on.

Is it just me...... or is that WAY TOO MUCH WORK for anyone else?
I'd rather spend my time snuggling with my husband & eating ice cream with my gal pals.
Where I don't feel like I need to over-analyze things just to stay true friends with them.
Where I can talk about what kind of bra to buy or what lipstick stays in place after a serious make-out session with my husband.
[And for the record, I totally had both of these conversations with my girlfriends this past week.]

I don't like myself when I am over-analyzing everything to death.
I like myself most when I am with people who allow me the comfort & freedom to be myself.
And I guess for me, Meggan - I'm not in a place in my life where I can be around a man [who isn't my Dad, my brother, or my husband] by myself & not be over-analyzing things.
Maybe I'm just not as mature as you are.
And that's okay by me to admit that.

I know that for me, Meggan - it's the most healthy for me to stick with my "couple friends."
And not confide in any man who isn't my husband.

I will say that if you are married and you do have opposite sex relationships outside of your marriage,
be mindful & respectful of your spouse.
If your spouse ever has hesitations or qualms about any of your friendships, it's better to respect your spouse's feelings.
You did afterall, take a vow before family, friends, & God to forsake all others.
Until death do you part.
Never forget that.

But if you are in a healthy friendship with someone, and both of you are happily married, will you please leave me some comments?
I'd LOVE to meet you & study you & pick your brain.
Because I think it might be possible for these truly platonic relationships to exist.
I just haven't known any that personally do outside of "couple friends."

I love learning from you & what works for you/what doesn't.
Keep the discussion going.
And may all of our relationships be God honoring & loving.
Peace out.