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Friday, June 29, 2012

Start at the Top

During the last presidential campaign, I became engrossed in the debate to an unhealthy level. I read everything and listened to the commentary every second I wasn't at work. When I watched television I joined right in with the arguments, ranting and raving like a lunatic. I could literally feel my blood pressure shoot up. When my son came to visit he said... "Mom, you really shouldn't listen to that stuff, it's not good for you." I actually agreed with him. So, to a large degree I stepped away from the news after the election. I have watched it, but not to the point that I begin to have heart palpitations. Last week I was getting ready to mail the hefty speeding fine I got when I was vacationing oh so lazily in Colorado. It was a pretty good chunk of money,one that would definitely cramp my shopping for a while. I followed all of the troopers instructions and made a copy of the citation before mailing the original back to the courts. For just a split second in time, I thought to myself.... "What if I just decide not to pay this ticket? What would actually happen to me?" Sure they would probably put a warrant out for my arrest, but it's not likely that I'll be back in Colorado anytime soon, and even less likely I'd be driving while there so the chances of me being picked up and arrested for a warrant in Colorado is slim to none. There are criminal running all over the place with warrants out in there own communities, I could probably get away with it (except for my shadow, Murphy's Law). Immediately this train of thinking took me to civic responsibility. I'm a rule follower (unless I'm late for my son's rehearsal dinner). I pay my taxes, I follow the laws. Our city recently passed an ordinance about the time you could put your garbage container by the curb. No, I'm not kidding. You are only allowed to put the container by the curb the evening before pick up and it must be removed from the curb by the end of the day of pick up. If you leave your container at the curb during unauthorized times, you can be fined. Personally this chaps my cheeks, but it's a rule my husband and I adhere to without exception. There has been a lot going on in the news for a while regarding elected officials and/or their appointees just blatantly disregarding laws, skirting around regulations, and manipulating the system to their own benefit or their own agenda. It's nothing new, it's been going on across the board since the beginning of time, but either it's become more prevalent, more publicized or I'm just paying more attention, but it's starting to get on my nerves. I believe in America and I believe in our Constitution. I don't however, believe in the people elected or appointed to uphold the Constitution. Perhaps there was a time in our history when elected officials listened to those who put them in office, then they went back to Washington and spoke for the majority of those people, but that time is no more. When the people who are bound by oath to uphold the laws and constitution of this Country, no longer feel the slightest urge to do so, where does that leave the ordinary citizen? When those in leadership fail to pay their taxes, follow the laws, and conduct themselves in an examplary manner, how does that effect the ordinary citizen? It makes them think twice about mailing in the hefty fine they received for being overcome with anxiety about missing their sons rehearsal dinner... It's simple as that! If they don't have to follow the rules, why should I? Things need to change. America needs to clean house and just like on Saturdays when I clean my house... We need to start at the top. IMO

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Happily Ever After Together

Using the mountains as a back drop, and with everyone wearing shoes (although not high heels), the wedding began. The Bride was escorted by her father through freestanding doors, down a grassy isle lined with weathered pews.  My son waited for his Bride with his eyes brimming with tears.  Even though this was the ministers (also a friend), first wedding, it was a beautiful ceremony.
One of the most touching things about the ceremony was, after the vows were said and "I Do's" given, when the minister usually prays over the couple, instead he asked all of the wedding party to circle the couple and lay hands on them in prayer. It was precious.
The reception was equally as precious. After a wonderful meal of lasagna, made by the Bride's aunt, my son grabbed his accustic guitar and sang a song he had written for his Bride. After his song, three of his friends sang a few songs.  This was so special because that's what they do... Instead of watching TV or playing video games (and when they aren't setting each others arm pits on fire), they sit around and sing.  When my son lived at home, he would sit in the kitchen with his guitar and quietly pick and talk to me while I cooked dinner.  They are a talented group and I never tire of hearing them sing.

Towards the end of the reception, my son gave a toast to his Bride, then he opened up the floor to anyone who wanted to give a toast. One by one, family and friends stood to tell their story, share a memory or give a blessing. It was like an old fashioned testimony service except less churchie. The reception ended as the mountain air began to cool the meadow. They made their way up the hill, through a tunnel created by those who love them, to begin their happily ever after together. From the beginning of the ceremony to the end of the reception, the wedding was a perfect representation of each of their personalities.  May their lives together be unique as the ceremony that joined them as one.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Happy Birth Day Colorado Style

Friday morning, my daughter's birthday, my son's wedding, an emotional day. Unknown to her, I invited the wedding party over for a surprise breakfast birthday party. The girls and I got up and fixed breakfast and set it on the picnic table out front. We sat up a gift table with The Southern Bell cake in the middle (the much more expensive Southern Bell cake when you factor in the speeding ticket). Breakfast and birthday cake... What could be better? The guys and girls began to arrive and we gathered out front for the  birthday song and breakfast. The horses grazed beside the yard and as the sun began to wipe the chill away. In the foothills of Colorado we celebrated the birth of a Sailor. I've always felt birthday should be pronounced... "Birth-Day", because as a mom I
tend to relive the day of my children's birth on their birthday. I remember hers better than the others because I, (for some stupid reason), wanted to do it drug-free and all the other crap you tend to idealize with your first child. I smartened up after her and went for the drug induced haze on the other two,(not really but kind of). Anywho... (rabbit trail) When I held that pink bundle of joy in my arms for the first time, I could only imagine she would turn out to be the fascinating person she is today. To say I admire her strength, courage and tenacity is an understatement. She is someone who has
achieved things I could never dream of, has done more than I could ever hope, and has gone places I would have never believed possible. This was her moment, this was her "Birth Day". Happy Birth Day Sissy. Love you tons and bunches.

Going Against the Flow at a High Rate of Speed, Day 4

Hang on, it's time to rock and roll
I'm the type of girl who doesn't have a problem going against the flow if things are cuter from that angle, and apparently I'm the type of girl who doesn't mind going against the flow at a rapid speed if that's what it takes to get there. Day 4 of the wedding road trip proved that both of these statements are true... And very costly. From the get-go, it was going to be a busy day. It was wedding rehearsal day so there was decorating to be done, outfits to selected and nerves to be wadded up in a nice tight bow. Sounds like the perfect job for me, cause no one can wad up nerves like I can. First things first. Wedding day was also my daughter's birthday. You can't just skip a birthday for a wedding... Hello! This was going to be her first birthday home after being away for 7 years. Some of that 7 years was spent in San Diego and Maine, but 9 months of it was on deployment aboard the USS Sampson DDG102 (yes the very ship that was in the movie "Battleship" in case you haven't heard), and those 9 months were the equivalent of several years on the lines of this mother's face and in the roots of this mother's blond locks. Months ago when I found out we would be in Colorado on her birthday, I started looking for some place I could get a ubber special cake for this
The Southern Bell from Hopscotch Bakery
ubber special birthday. I found Hopscotch Bakery on the Internet and ordered The Southern Bell cake which is red velvet with rasberry filling and white chocolate buttercream icing. Sounds heavenly doesn't it? The bakery was in Pueblo Co, which was great because we were right by Pueblo... I mean on the map it's just like less than 1/4 inch from one place to the other. So, I planned on leaving around 10ish or so picking up the cake, coming back, going to the bowling ally to decorate the banquet room then getting dressed for rehearsal and dinner. Simple, not a problem... With the exception of getting 1/4 inch on mountain roads takes a little longer than 1/4 inch in the plains of Oklahoma where you can see from here to there as the wind comes ripping
The Fam
through the plains. You forget those little facts when you live in the flat lands. Luckily for me, just one girlfriend was up and ready when I needed to leave, which worked out better than I even hoped because that left two females holding down the fort that at the time we didn't know needed to be held down. We typed in our destination on the GPS and headed out, except when we got to where Margaret (that's what we call our GPS, because she sounds like Margaret Thatcher), told us to turn left, we really felt we should turn right, so we went on gut instinct instead of doing what Margaret said, which really upsets Margaret and she starts copping a tude with me which makes me nervous. "Listen to me... You must turn left... You're not listening to me..." We did get to Pueblo in spite of Margaret, but it just seemed to take so long. We found the bakery, but it was right
Last minute instructions from Father of the Bride
next to this really cute boutique and really, it was so much easier to "look around" without having to hold the cake so we decided to go into the boutique first, because that's what girls do when left with a difficult decisions. OMGosh, I wanted, that and that and that, plus a whole lot more, but I only walked out of the store with that, and that, and that,which included an adorable dress I was afraid they didn't have in my size. As luck would have it, they did have it in my size and I just couldn't find it because it was on display backwards and it looked like a different dress on the rack. I totally went against the flow on this one, bought the dress and yes, I wear it backwards because... It's cuter that way.  While my friend checked out her that and that's I went next door to grab
My signature Pinterest banner on the wall
the cake. They were so nice in the bakery, they even threw in some little extra pastries for us and then we rushed back to the car because gosh, it was getting late, much later than I had planned. Margaret (bless her heart,) for some unknown reason (maybe it's because we followed her instructions this time) took us home a different way, which is confusing and irritating. I can't remember if it was the longer way or the shorter way, all I know is that time was tick tocking by at a rapid speed and the faster it ticked and tocked, the faster I drove but it still didn't seem like we were getting there fast enough. Finally we called the ones holding down the fort and told them they were just going to have to go ahead and do the decorating because it didn't look like we were going to make it
Support Group
back in time. Okay, stop and read that again. Me... Decorating Control Freak Extraordinaire...Relinquished all control of the little sliver of the wedding that is bestowed on the mother of the groom.... The only part that I could put my stamp on... THE ONLY PART!!!! Still, you really have no idea what a ginormous thing this was to someone like me, but due to my relaxed, go with the flow, vacation attitude, I gave it up just like that and it didn't even bother me one little bit. Except why in the H-E-double hockey sticks did Margaret take us back a different way??? I still don't know, but what I do know is just as we were flying upon Silvercliffe, which is close to Westcliffe, but it still isn't in Westcliffe, I look in my rear view mirror and see a white vehicle with all
Mother of The Bride
these pretty colored flashing lights that were just going nuts. It wasn't a pretty sight, I'll tell you that. As I slowed down to pull over my friend in patting my hand saying.... "It's okay Jac, it's going to be okay" except I was going REALLY fast... Really fast and I have never gotten a ticket before and I knew with Murphy's Law being my shadow and all that there was no way I'd be able to talk myself out of a HONKIN ticket, so I had my driver's license in my hand and my arm extended out the window before he ever got out of his car. I was so busted and I knew it and was just hoping I didn't get thrown in jail. That might take some explaining. We waded through every insurance verification I have ever had since I owned the car as I quietly let the tears flow and fought
It's all good
every desire I had to beg on hands and knees for him not to give me a ticket. I was so guilty, there was just no denying it, so I didn't. He was very nice, extremely understanding and yet very diligent in issuing me my very expensive speeding ticket. While I'm receiving my lecture with a humble heart, my friend is one the phone with my son... "No, she can't talk right now... Hmm, she is speaking with the officer." Apparently the decorating committee got the memo, because they had planned on "Punking" me with their version of wedding rehearsal decorating... They thought better of it, which is probably a good thing. To say I felt horrible about the ticket, is an understatement, especially when my husband received the news without an ounce of condemnation.
How much more fun is this Mom?
That made me feel even worse.... "Shouldn't someone yell at me already?" All in all we made it to the rehearsal in one piece and when I reached up to give my son a hug, all he could say is... "Mom don't lose it during this because if you lose it, I'm definately going to lose it." He had that little boy, I'm fixing to cry look that I haven't seen in so long... It was sweet. You know when you are losing it, but you are trying not to show you are losing it? That's what I did all through rehearsal. How I was ever going to make it through the actual wedding was beyond me. The rehearsal dinner was great. The service was great, and the bowling was tons o' fun which was way better than being all stuffy and formal. The only thing that could have made it better (besides not getting
If only The Thunder hadn't lost...
a ticket and having my nerves wadded up in a bow), would have been getting to watch the Oklahoma City Thunder Beat The Miami Heat... Again. Other than that, everything was just as it should be... Perfect!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Bucket List Mission, Not so Impossible

The Fearless Five
Okay, so day 3 we were on a mission.... A bucket list mission. After a good breakfast and more mane braiding, porch sitting and general vacation laziness, part of us headed for the Royal Gorge for some zip lining. Yeah Baby! If you hadn't zip lined before,
you might think you would feel like you were dangling by a thread. I was surprised... Well kind of. I thought one of us (no names mentioned), would feel hesitant about climbing a mountain, dangling by a wire and hurling myself to the other side. Actually, hurling myself from one place to another seems to come quite naturally to me. I can do it without even trying... Who
knew? We  had to go through the instruction part of it, which was the hardest part for me, but the rest was a breeze. The reason I still carry a stupid steno pad around the office, isn't because of my fond high school memories of my shorthand teacher Mrs Reynolds, it's because if there is more than two steps to any set of instructions, I just disengage (which is probably why
I wasn't Mrs. Reynolds favorite student), guess it's the ADHD... I made sure that I was the last one in line so, not only had I heard the instructions, but I had also had 6 visual examples before it was my turn. When it came time to hurl, I didn't even flinch or bat an eyelash. I know you probably get tired of hearing this, and I certainly get tired of saying it, but I just wasn't like this before the TBI. It was a big deal to walk around the block by
myself... I was afraid of everything. Zipping was like nothing at all, in the fear factor department and everything in the fun to be had department. Even when one of the guides experienced a trolley failure on his way to the platform, he calmly explained that he had heard the tale tale signs of the bearing wearing out on the
group before us. As he said it,  everyone began looking their gear, It is a little disconcerting when you see experienced guides come to a stop before they reached the platform and then tell the other guide... "I'm going to have to pull myself in, I heard it pop.  The last line was a duel race line. I totally beat my husband by several feet, the fact that I jumped the gate a few second, didn't hurt my chances any, but I would have won anyway. We
hiked, zipped, hiked, zipped for three hours and I could have done it all day long. We came back to the cabin all sunburned humidity deprived and exhausted. It was a great day. I would recommend zipping to even the faint of heart. The worst thing that could happen is you might be beat by a girl on the last line, which isn't nearly as bad as being beaten by a girl in golf...

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sometimes You Feel Like a Nut, Day 2

Sometimes you feel like a nut because you are
 Vacation is all about not having to be any place at any certain time, about relaxing, laughing and drinking in as much adventure as you can tolerate in a short time. The first half of day 2 started early for me. I got up early before anyone else and slipped outside with my sweater. The morning was beautiful, the view was breathtaking and I was a happy little camper. As everyone began to wake up, they ventured to the back porch to enjoy the view too. No one seemed to be in a hurry to get dressed, eat breakfast or to break the spell that had been cast on us by the early morning beauty of Colorado. As the sun climbed higher in the sky, we barely changed positions. I wondered over to the horses to see if they would be my friend. They would, so I braided their manes (they looked spiffy), then my husband pointed out that the owner may not want to round up cattle on horses with braided manes, so I took the braids out and apologized profusely to the horses because they would have to go another day with horse hair until I cleared the braiding with the owner. They understood. I stood
Like breakfast at Tiffany's only better
on the front porch for a while and listened to the ranch hands bang around in the barn. When my husband joined me, I told him I had the urge to go ask them if I could do something "ranchy". I was starting to feel all cow girlie and wanted to get my hands dirty. He agreed, I should go on out and see if they'd put me to work, but then the lazy took over again and I went around back, laid a blanket on the porch and soaked in the sun as the day began to warm. We lay on the porch and sat in lawn chairs, some of us with our eyes closed, some of us in a hypnotic trance that only vacation can bring and listened to one of the boys read C. S. Lewis out loud. The morning lasted forever and we had no desire to hurry it along. Finally one by one, we roused ourselves enough to get dressed and waited
for my son and daughter. We had no particular plans, but thought perhaps we'd mosey (cause I think that's what you do in the country) into town for breakfast. When they arrived, we did mosey into town for breakfast, but found the time for breakfast had passed so we mosied down to The Rancher's Roost Cafe' and Bowling Ally for an early lunch. The perfect chance since  I needed to survey the dreaded bowling ally my son was insistent on having his rehearsal dinner in. The Rancher's Roost Cafe' and Bowling Ally was a pleasant surprise. The bowling ally at home is dark, dank, and disgustingly void of any charm. This bowling ally was bright, cheery, the food was great and the staff was so nice. When I asked to see the banquet room, I was pleasantly surprised and totally at peace with the bowling ally rehearsal dinner. Although this wouldn't be a chocolate fountain and pink champagne rehearsal dinner, it would fit right in with the easy going, laid back theme of the wedding. I was at peace, and trust me that makes everyone's vacation a better place to be. We
talked to the staff about our plans for Thursday night... Critical stuff like, could we have all of the televisions playing The Thunder game while we bowled. When you're having a wedding, you must get all the tiny details worked out in advanced, so with that done, we headed back down the street to mosey around the shops. Actually the women mosied while the men internally groaned and dreaded to see what we would bring out of the shops. We girls all got really cute cowboy hats that looked like they had been stained with years of sweat. We thought we looked very cow girlish, the guys thought we looked like tourist. What do they know? Then my husband made an executive decision (which he rarely has the opportunity to do) and decided we should all go to Bishop Castle. He had looked forward to seeing Bishop Castle forever, so we loaded up in our cars and meandered (instead of mosied) through the mountains to this looming castle in the middle of the forest. It was very
impressive, especially when you realize it was all done by a single man... For no particular reason whatsoever. I loved the spiral staircases that took you far above your comfort zone, and just like the volcano, you got quite a workout climbing the stairs. The castle went up and over with endless staircases and bridges. I totally wanted to play hide and seek, but no one else really seemed excited about the idea (why must we always act like adults?). The man building the castle sat up on one of the structures mixing and muttering while his friend sat on the front porch of a shack nearby and talked to him and anyone else who wondered up. The more I climbed and looked around, the more odd it became. It was a mixture of whimsy, beauty, craftsmanship and just lunacy. On some level, his strange obsession made me feel more normal than usual... Less creative, but more
normal. You'd probably would have to read the large handwritten (or scrawled) signs he had posted to fully understand how this odd attraction could make me feel normal, then who knows, it might make you see me as more normal too. LOL! We headed home, stopping to buy groceries for the cabin. Our boys prepared for their last adventure together while they were both single men. They had planned on hiking, or camping for the night, but the planning never made it to the where, what or when stage. They left on foot, heading for the nearby mountains as we all crossed our fingers and prayed they would make it back in time for the wedding. The day ended with The Oklahoma City Thunder rolling through our satelite dish to a victory over the Miami Heat. It was a good day!


Monday, June 18, 2012

It Feels Like Home

The View from Amsbury Bunkhouse on San Isabel Ranch, Westcliffe Colorado
All roads on the wedding road trip lead to Westcliffe Colorado, where the wedding would be held. I had never been to Westcliffe and from what I could tell from the Internet there wasn't a much there (hench the rehearsal dinner at the bowling ally). In looking for lodging there wasn't really any hotels, just a couple of bed and breakfast places and cabins in the foothills. I found one cabin that looked simple, nothing fancy. Imagine that! I actually choose the cabin because it was less fancy. Like a lot of things on the Internet, you couldn't tell much from the pictures except it would sleep all of us and we would get to be together. So I reserved the cabin and hoped and prayed that it was what we needed. The more people you have on a road trip, the longer it takes because... More bladders, more pee pee breaks. Monday afternoon, the owner of the cabin called to see when he could expect us to be arriving. We still hadn't made it to the volcano and I had no idea how long that would take so I really had no answer for him. Later in the evening he called me back and said he had left the door open, turned on the lights and I could call him if we needed anything. He also gave me a ominous warning that the home was built around 1900, it wasn't the Hilton, the septic system needed to be babied, but he hoped we liked it. He said it in such a way that I felt he thought there was a greater chance we wouldn't like it rather than we would. Everything about this trip was treading into the unknown (which I'm not totally comfortable with). So, I was tired, worried he was waiting on us, afraid I had made a terrible mistake in renting the cabin and well I was just ready to get there. I'm kind of like a two year old when I get really fatigued, there's this underlying hysteria that bubbles up inside, I hate it and I fight it, but when I'm tired, it seeps out as quiet tears and mild hyper-ventilation... Thank you TBI for that little trait, I wasn't like that before I knew you. Anyway, it was dark, the roads were gravel and we were going off of landmark directions, because GPS doesn't do unpaved roads as well as it does major highways. Finally we turned into where we thought the cabin was and sure enough it looked just like the picture, except for just a nano-second, maybe less quaint and I thought maybe I had made a big mistake. Then I opened the door and the little cabin wrapped it's sweet arms around me and whispered... "Welcome Home" We lumbered inside all travel weary and worn, checked out all of the rooms and totally agreed, it was perfect. It took me a while to put my finger on what I really liked about it, then it dawned on me when I looked in the front bedroom a second time... It reminded me of my Grandma and Grandpa's house. The next morning when I woke up, I grabbed a sweater and quietly stepped onto the back porch. The mountains stood in the early morning mist, the horses grazed quietly on the side of the house and the air was crisp. I wrapped my sweater around me, hugged myself to stay warm and sat on the porch swing thinking to myself.... "I could totally live here, it feels like home."

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Wedding Road Trip - I Got Cratered!

I love Colorado like I love shoes, but the drive there is like a foot fungus on steroids. Hours and hours of barren land, endless roads and no Dr. Pepper 10 makes for a long drive. But hey this wasn't just vacation, it was my son's wedding so there was fun to be had and friends to have it with. In all the years we've been going to Colorado for vacation, we have always driven right past the Capulin Volcano in New Mexico. By that point in the trip I've always just been ready to be there already, and from the road it looks like a giant ant hill to me. But this year we had a vested interest in taking a closer look. One of our friends had a  Niece who works for the park and we wanted to drop by to say hi. To be perfectly honest which always gets me into the perfect amount of trouble, I wasn't particularly excited about the stop and didn't expect it to be interesting or even scenic due to the whole ant hill appearance. When we turned off of the main highway onto the road leading to the park, the landscape instantly took a surprisingly beautiful turn. When we got to the visitors center and got out of the car, the weather alone was enough to make me glad I came, perfect weather without a doubt. We had the pleasure of a guided tour and I'll have to admit that, like so much in life, the view from the road is so deceiving. The view from the rim was spectacular, the narrative was interesting, the hike was refreshing (although you better be in shape) and the all around experience was worth getting off of the beaten path. So yes, I got cratered at the Capulin Volcano National Park because there is beauty in the most barren of places, surprises when the road seems the most boring and nothing like a good detour to take your mind off the hours of driving still to be had. I was glad for the chance to stretch my legs and to take in the amazing view. Thanks for the tour Lynn, it was the perfect beginning to an amazing vacation!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

I Wish I Knew

Tomorrow I leave on a wedding road trip.  My oldest son will be married by this time next week. After a day of "doing around", I'm finally getting a chance to settle down and realize.... The time has come. Oddly enough, my mind isn't focused on his life changing decision, it's focused on hers. I married at 18 and although I felt like I knew everything.... I knew nothing. What do I know now, that I wished I'd known then? For One, I didn't know that women aren't very honest people. Not only are we not honest with others, we aren't honest with ourselves.  Women are taught at a very early age, to hide our flaws because it's not okay to be imperfect. I honestly don't think men have the same pressure to be perfect like women do; that's why they scratch, belch and fart without shame... Because it's okay.  The Bloggess is one of my favorite writers for a variety of reasons. The main reason I love to read her stuff, is because she has taken her warped flaws, embraced them and put them out there for the world to see. In return, women have embraced her and all of her flaws because it makes them feel more normal. Women have a deep need, to know it's okay to be imperfect. Sometimes when I'm sitting with a group of women chatting about everyday normal stuff like housework, child rearing, money management, hygeine or whatever the hot topic of the day is... I'll think to myself.... "Gosh! I'm just a failure on every level!" I'm constently letting my housework slide because I'm into a good book, or a nap just sounds way more fun than mopping the floor. My most steadfast parenting rule is "Don't bring company home without warning". I'll blow a whole months budget on a really cute outfit and not even feel entirely bad about it, and yeah, at this very moment I'm comptemplating skipping giving myself a pedicure because I'm just so dang tired. I'm a mess! 100%, 79 shades of imperfect and only once in a while do I really feel terrible about being so. So, if I could give my daughter-in-law advice I wish I'd had when I was young it would be this.... Embrace yourself including the flaws and save the mask for Halloween. People around you need to know who you are, not who you wish you were. When the women in your life see you embracing the warped part of yourself, it makes them feel more normal. Sure, they will still judge you, talk about you when you're not around, and totally compare how their flaws aren't as bad as your flaws, but that's just because they aren't being honest with themselves, and because it's so dang hard to see looking through a mask that doesn't  fit them very well.  Be gentle with yourself, my son isn't marrying you because he thinks you are a perfect person.... He is marrying you because he knows you are the perfect person for him. Looking back on a life of trying to keep up with the perfect perception of who I should be, is a sham and something I wish I had known way back in the day. Now when I'm tempted to compare myself to the masks of others, I have to stop myself because, now I know they just haven't learned to embrace the flaws they hide behind their masks.... I wish all women knew the freedom of not living up to something that isn't really there to begin with. Our lives would be so much more enjoyable if we could simply have permission... To be.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Good Girl Just Like You

A Good Girl takes the oath that will change her life and will help change our Country

I got the most precious text from my daughter last night. I hadn't heard from her all day which isn't unusual since she often works 12-14 hours a day. Just like a lot of jobs, the end of the month is crunch time for her... Quotas to meet, reports to complete. As I sat and watched the Oklahoma City Thunder roll over the San Antonio Spurs, I got a text that read....

"I got one in on the last day of the month! She's already my favorite."

Recruiting for the United States Navy may sound easy, but it's proven to be a very challenging job... Especially in May when most high school students have graduation and summer fun on their minds. Add those distractions to the stringent requirements handed down from above, and it is often like looking for a needle in a haystack. I texted her back with...

"She is beautiful! Tell her we're very proud of her."

My husband and I have always had a great deal of respect for the military, but since our daughter has been in and we've seen the tremendous difficulties they face, it's raised our gratitude to a new level. It's also been touching to see our daughter's pride grow throughout her career. She replied with...

"I am so proud of her, she is such a good girl, she is going to do great things."

She sounded like a proud Momma and all I could say is...

"Just like you."