Tag Archives: holiday

Standing up to December

December is the giant of the calendar year. It bullies all the other months with it’s frantic, festive persona. Both the fun-loving life of the party and the obnoxious character who sucks all the attention in the room. She’s busier and happier and larger than life.

But she’s also lonelier and sadder and phonier.

December bullies people too. She’s a hard task master. More than any other time of the year we want to do it all, and be it all, and get it all right. Or at least look the part in the family photo.

santa

Not to worry. This isn’t a nihilistic, anti-Christmas post. It’s not another ’embrace the true reason for the season’ sermon. This is just me, trying to make peace with December, the month I anticipate and dread in equal measure.

I love the trimmings and trappings of the holidays. I relish the music and the decorations and the warm, spicy smells. I’m deeply touched by Nativity, and the connotations of Immanuel: ‘God With Us’. I even enjoy rushing around to create those special seasonal moments.

Except when I don’t.

In December, there’s a fine line between ‘have-to’ and ‘want-to.’ Traditions can either comfort or consume, enhance or ensnare, delight or dilute. The question we have to ask ourselves is this: do our rituals serve us, or do we serve them?

Advent is meant to be a time of reflection, of mindfulness, of living with intention. This is both a spiritual discipline and a practical skill, and it doesn’t just happen, no matter how many garlands we hang.

So here’s me, making it clear from the get-go: December is not the boss of me!

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Our Halloween Compromise

Have you ever wondered about those religious types that hate Halloween? Or maybe you are the religious type who wonders what on earth people see in this creepy “holiday.” We’ve got both kinds in our family, so we’ve had to find a middle ground. Here’s a post from last year about what works for us…

The "Happy Scarecrow" C made for our front lawn last year.

The “Happy Scarecrow” C made for our front lawn last year.

We didn’t celebrate Halloween in my house growing up. There are a handful of pictures of Preschool Me as Red Riding Hood, but by the time my sisters came around, my parents’ “liberal trick-or-treating” urges had been thoroughly quashed. No carving pumpkins, no “what-are-you-going-as-this-year” discussions, and absolutely no witches, ghosts or monsters. We also didn’t do Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy.

This sounds weird to most of you, right?

I don’t regret my somewhat unusual childhood. I didn’t miss anything important. I learned that I didn’t have to be like everyone else. And I didn’t often feel deprived (also, I snuck out with Jen Mastre to go trick or treating several years in a row… sorry Mom).

But, my husband comes from a very different culture than mine (most North Americans refer to it as Middle Class Normal; we called it “worldly”). When our cultures collided, I was forced to evaluate exactly what I think and believe about Halloween. And what it means to be a Christian.

Christians feel a great responsibility to represent Jesus to the whole world. When you love/admire/respect someone so deeply and feel that your every action reflects on them, well, that’s a lot of pressure. And sometimes, we can get weird about it. Halloween is one area where we as Christians sometimes overreact and freak the hell out (pun intended).

There are belief systems which are repugnant to me. Satanism, Aryan Nation, Rampant Consumerism, “Not Liking” Chocolate… to name just a few. But I’ve come to a point in my life where I am no longer threatened by them. God is not panicked by Halloween, so why should we be?

Whatever position you take on the Origins of Halloween debate (evil demonic ritual or harmless harvest party), at this point in history, right now, it has become a mainstream celebration of masquerade and candy and general creepiness. What matters most is not what it once meant, but what it means now. A lot like that pagan festival at the end of December that we’re all so fond of these days.

Make of it what you will. October is full of teachable moments in our home about what we believe and why we’re weird and how we live and how it’s okay for people to do things differently than us. And there are many good things about Halloween, especially for Christians:

  1. It builds COMMUNITY. It’s a rare chance to spend time with your neighbours. And show off your kids. In really cute costumes.
  2. It’s an opportunity to be GENEROUS. And kind. And neighbourly. And hospitable. And all sorts of Jesus-y things. A unique chance to do all this in a culturally appropriate, non-obnoxious way. Plus, the really cute kids in costumes come right to your door – how convenient is that?
  3. It’s FUN! This seems like the weak post-script at the end of the list. I mean, Christianity isn’t about having fun, right? Except for all the talk of joy and love and endless feasts/celebrations throughout the Bible which paint a different picture. I can’t see Jesus as the disapproving sourpuss with a dark house; more likely he’d be out there high-fiving the neighbour kids and enjoying the cute costumes. I know I will. Well, that and making sure the appropriate Candy Tax is levied on each child.

That said, I still don’t love Halloween. It’s just not my thing. We have friends who absolutely adore it and enjoy every minute. According to some consumer reports, it is second only to Christmas in holiday popularity.

But I find much of it unsettling. Years ago a neighbour strung up the corpse of a child in a tree, noose and all. Of course it was fake and supposed to be a fun decoration, but that year we knew two children who had been murdered. To say this was an upsetting would be an understatement. It gutted me that anyone could make light of it.

So we drew our line in the sand.

We do not celebrate fear and violence. This is our Halloween compromise. We enjoy the good. We avoid the bad. And for us, that means no spooky, scary, gorey, creepy, bloody, or (and this one is the rule throughout the year) slutty.

So here’s me, and this is how we redeem Halloween in our house.

Where do you stand on Halloween? Anything goes… the creepier the better? Or are there limits?

Reposted from Oct. 29, 2012.


Happy Birthday JC!

Today I spoke to someone who refused to say “Merry Christmas!”

I can sense the Evangelicals getting all in an uproar as I write this (cause nothing says celebrate with us better than arrogance and bossiness).

I decided not to litigate. Or protest. Or start a petition.

Not just because I think people have every right to celebrate what or how they want (free country and all that). Not just because she is incredibly stubborn and will not be moved. Not just because she’s my kid.

Because I think she got it right.

This past month I’ve read and watched and heard dozens of Christmas productions. From silly to profound, we come up with new ways and resurrect old ways, we add a modern twist here, a cool graphic there – all trying to communicate the simple but astounding truth: God was born!

My little B has cut through all the crap today. She simply says:

Happy Birthday Jesus!

20121225-162832.jpg

So here’s us, hope you’re enjoying the birthday party as much as we are. Happy Birthday indeed!


All I Want For Christmas is… Less Christmas

Sunday night we saw a production of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.”

In our basement.

The big girls and their friend put together an elaborate play with costumes and music and several very long intermissions. Their interpretation was unique to say the least.

Mary Scrooge was a modern woman who, according to the Ghost of Christmas Past, proposed to her boyfriend at Christmas. He promptly turned her down because she “just wasn’t into Christmas, which is, like, his favourite time of year… so it just would, like, never work.” Jerk! Kind of seems like she dodged a bullet there, but maybe that’s just me.

The Ghost of Christmas Present said, “S’up, yo?” then brought her to Tiny Tim, who was repeatedly dumped on his head. I’m pretty sure that wasn’t scripted, but it did increase the pathos (and fill me with gratitude that they had cast a Cabbage Patch doll instead of little brother for the role).

The Ghost of Christmas Future was appropriately creepy in one of our camping ponchos. The gravedigger, played by a snarky cowgirl, assured Mary that this would be her fate if she didn’t learn to love Christmas.

In the final scene, Scrooge celebrates her new favourite holiday (under threat of death) by running around town in a Hawaiian dress buying cheese for all the children. This is either a nod to Muppets Christmas Carol or a reflection of my eldest’s dearly held belief that cheese is the best food in the world (the stinkier the better).

The truth is, much like Mary, I’ve been dreading this whole season. The work. The decorating. The expense. The pine needles tracked through every nook and cranny of the house. The shopping and worrying and lists and trying to get everything right. I’ve been sick for a long time and now that I’m feeling better, this is a giant obligation hanging over my head.

But I’m the Mom. So my feelings from one moment to the next are rarely the priority. Which is why I decided to bite the bullet. I pulled the Christmas boxes out of storage and determined to unpack the bare minimum. The girls pulled out the rest and put most of it in their own room. At least now I can stop stressing about it.

It wasn’t that big of a deal. Not nearly as bad as I had built up in my head. In fact, it was fun to see how excited all the kids were. They have enough joy and anticipation and excitement to offset Mom and Dad’s general weariness.

I had to laugh at the subtext of their festive play. Not liking Christmas is the ultimate sin. Sure, Scrooge was rude and mean and greedy, but none of that was as unacceptable as being a Holiday Humbug. This is the moral of the tale as seen through preteen eyes. Also the Grinch, Shrek the Halls and countless sappy Hallmark specials.

Why is this a sin? Why do we feel this pressure? I have certainly felt guilty about my lack of “spirit” this year. I’m usually one of those Christmas-y folks that loves every minute.

Many of us take the opportunity in December to celebrate Jesus Christ. For us, the elaborate rituals of the season are all part of that, which makes it meaningful. But we don’t need Christmas to celebrate Jesus. He didn’t celebrate it himself, now that I think of it.

It is also a time to celebrate family and generosity and eating delicious food. For most of us. For some, Christmas comes with a lot of posing and pretending and pain. It’s consumerism at its worst. Greed. Loneliness. Impossible expectations.

So maybe that’s why the Grinch Hated Christmas. And maybe it’s none of our business that he did. It’s not a sin, after all.

Christmas is what you make of it. For some that means Martha Stewart meets Jimmy Stewart meets Angels Singing on High. For others, less is more. Who’s to say which is a better way? It comes down to personality, priorities and beliefs. So, let’s cut each other, and ourselves, some slack. Everyone should do as much or as little as they enjoy.

As for me and my house, we’ll find our Christmas spirit, just like we always do. And I’m not going to worry if we don’t.

After the show we all danced like maniacs to “All I Want For Christmas is You.” Pretty appropriate considering the one thing I’m totally excited about is sharing Christmas with our boy. Everything else is optional.

And for a moment, while L was showing her Dad how to do the moonwalk the “right” way, B was practicing her disco moves and the boy was doing an impressive running man, I felt like Christmas may be a pretty good idea after all.

So here’s me, a little less Grinch today than yesterday. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.


The Halloween Compromise

The “Happy Scarecrow” C made for our front lawn. It passes the test. Thanks S&J!

We didn’t celebrate Halloween in my house. There are a handful of pictures of Preschool Me as Red Riding Hood, but by the time my sisters came around, my parents’ “liberal trick-or-treating” urges had been thoroughly quashed. No carving pumpkins, no “what-are-you-going-as-this-year” discussions, and absolutely no witches, ghosts or monsters.We also didn’t do Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy.This sounds weird to most of you, right?

I don’t regret my somewhat unusual childhood. I didn’t miss anything important. I learned that I didn’t have to be like everyone else. And I didn’t often feel deprived (also, I snuck out with Jen Mastre to go trick or treating several years in a row… sorry Mom).

But, my husband comes from a very different culture than mine (most North Americans refer to it as Middle Class Normal; we called it “worldly”). When our cultures collided, I was forced to evaluate exactly what I think and believe about Halloween. And what it means to be a Christian.

Christians feel a great responsibility to represent Jesus to the whole world. When you love/admire/respect someone so deeply and feel that your every action reflects on them, well, that’s a lot of pressure. And sometimes, we can get weird about it. Halloween is one area where we as Christians sometimes overreact and freak the hell out (pun intended).

There are belief systems which are repugnant to me. Satanism, Aryan Nation, Rampant Consumerism, “Not Liking” Chocolate… to name just a few. But I’ve come to a point in my life where I am no longer threatened by them. God is not panicked by Halloween, so why should we be?

Whatever position you take on the Origins of Halloween debate (evil demonic ritual or harmless harvest party), at this point in history, right now, it has become a mainstream celebration of masquerade and candy and general creepiness. What matters most is not what it once meant, but what it means now. A lot like that pagan festival at the end of December that we’re all so fond of these days.

Make of it what you will. October is full of teachable moments in our home about what we believe and why we’re weird and how we live and how it’s okay for people to do things differently than us. And there are many good things about Halloween, especially for Christians:

  1. It builds COMMUNITY. It’s a rare chance to spend time with your neighbours. And show off your kids. In really cute costumes.
  2. It is an opportunity to be GENEROUS. And kind. And neighbourly. And hospitable. And all sorts of Jesus-y things. A unique chance to do all this in a culturally appropriate, non-obnoxious way. Plus, the really cute kids in costumes come right to your door – how convenient is that?
  3. It is FUN! This seems like the weak post-script at the end of the list. I mean, Christianity isn’t about having fun, right? Except for all the talk of joy and love and endless feasts/celebrations throughout the Bible which paint a different picture. I can’t see Jesus as the disapproving sourpuss with a dark house; more likely he’d be out there high-fiving the neighbour kids and enjoying the cute costumes. I know I will. Well, that and making sure the appropriate Candy Tax is levied on each child.

That said, I still don’t love Halloween. It’s just not my thing. We have friends who absolutely adore it and enjoy every minute. According to some consumer reports, it is second only to Christmas in holiday popularity.

But I find much of it unsettling. Years ago a neighbour strung up the corpse of a child in a tree, noose and all. Of course it was fake and supposed to be a fun decoration, but that year we knew two children who had been murdered. To say this was an upsetting would be an understatement. It gutted me that anyone could make light of it.

So we drew our line in the sand.

We do not celebrate fear and violence. This is our Halloween compromise. We enjoy the good. We avoid the bad. And for us, that means no spooky, scary, gorey, creepy, bloody, or (and this one is the rule throughout the year) slutty.

So here’s me, and this is how we redeem Halloween in our house.

Where do you stand on Halloween? Anything goes… the creepier the better? Or are there limits?


Friday Favourites: Celebrate Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day is a big deal for us right now. We made our upcoming adoption official and public just yesterday. And now we have 4 adorable photos of our new son to moon over. JUST in time for the big day! Everything is coming up Christie.

Quote

There is no way to be a perfect mother, and a million ways to be a good one.

~Jill Churchill

Mothers

I have many good mothers to thank for the part they play in my life. Not perfect, but in the messiness of life they are doing the best they can. And for that I am grateful!

Here are a few of the lessons they have taught me along the way…

  • Thank you Mom – for your unflagging optimism. You’ve taught me to have faith.
  • Thank you Grandma – for your passion for our heritage. You’ve taught me the value of story.
  • Thank you Mom-in-law – for your generosity. You’ve taught me to give lavishly.
  • Thank you Grandma-in-law – for your kindness. You’ve taught me to be gentle with people.
  • Thank you StepMom-in-law – for your strength. You’ve taught me to advocate for the ones I love.
  • Thank you Foster Mom – for your devotion to children. You are teaching me about sacrificial love.
  • Thank you Birth Mom – for your love and effort. You are on my mind most of all right now. I can’t imagine how difficult this day will be for you. Regardless of everything else that has happened in your life, you truly wanted to do right by S. You gave our son life, and that’s the best gift of all!

Video

This one makes me so sad that my Mom doesn’t live closer by, so that I can explain Skype and web cameras to her, again.

Music Video

If you can hang in there through the 2 brats hurling verbal abuse at one another, you will reach the prize. The prize being Mr.T in tube socks and short shorts doing a rap about Mothers.

You’re welcome.

Infographic

Everything you ever wanted to know about Mother’s Day… and then some, to be honest.

Brought to you by: http://www.ultimatecoupons.com/blog/2011/05/everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know-about-mothers-day-infographic/

So here’s me, thankful for all the good moms in my life. And frankly, kind of relieved that we’re, none of us, expected to be perfect.


Modern Day Torture, aka The Timeshare Presentation

This time last week, we were on holiday, in Hawaii, but not anywhere we wanted to be. This time last week, the sun was shining, the beach was calling, but we were stuck indoors. This time last week, we experienced one of the unique tortures of modern society:

The timeshare presentation.

Reeling us in

They’re so friendly. Pushy, but friendly. First they butter you up with free chocolates and gifts for the kids. Then they pull out the big guns. The “no obligation whatsoever cause we’re not pushy and high pressure like those other guys” FREE gift that they are just dying to give you.

Sailboat ride.

For the whole family.

At sunset.

With a baby whale.

And dolphins.

And food. Free food.

We did that super secret, silent discussion that evolves sometime after the first decade of marriage. The eyebrow raise. Half shrug. Wink… no wait, he’s got something in his eye. Ah yes, the slight nod.

Okay, we’re in. But we are absolutely NOT going to buy anything. In fact, we felt better making that clear from the outset. “We don’t want to waste your time. We are absolutely not in any position to buy a timeshare right now, but yes, we’d like the free gift. Thank you for mentioning this trip to see the whales in front of our children, by the way. Okay, fine, sign us up.”

But just to be polite. And thrifty. Because free stuff is even better than baby whales. But we are absolutely NOT going to buy anything.

Setting the mood

And this is how we find ourselves setting the alarm insanely early ON OUR VACATION for a 90-minute sales pitch. Blech.

Now, to be honest, the only other time we did this, we ended up buying in. Perhaps we were just excited to finally have the salary level to make it into the “free stuff so we can woo you” club. And it’s been better than we expected. We’ve gotten our money’s worth and then some. We are timeshare believers.

In fact, without timeshare, we would never have been able to take this super-cheap vacation to Hawaii. The timeshare week was free (a limited time bonus, because we were a pretty hard sell). The airmiles paid for car rental and a few extra nights in the hotel. Cheap airfare came in the form of red eye flights with absurd layovers – 3 different flights to find our way home.

But we are absolutely NOT going to buy anything, this time.

So, here we wait with our cups of free cocoa. Neither of us drink coffee, which is a shame because the snazzy machine makes everything under the sun. The doughnuts aren’t half bad. Fresh fruit plate – breakfast of champions. There’s a popcorn machine in the corner. It’s like sample day at Costco. Be still my frugal little heart!

I shamelessly eavesdrop on the tables near us. What do you know, all the salespeople are just hitting it off with their new customers. They draw out the small talk and act disappointed by the need to broach the subject of the day.

“Cause, gee, I’m just having such a fabulous time yakking with you about your 14 grandchildren and your cat’s bursitis, but my slave driving boss insists that I go through this material with you. Did I mention that I have a cat too? Now that we’re such good buddies, I’m sure you won’t mind helping me out with it.”

Ya, I’m onto them. This is the “building rapport” part of the spiel. But they don’t fool me. No. I’m cool. I’m detatched. I’m a rock, I’m an iiiiiis-land… And I’ve got plenty of friends already. Bring it on.

That worked for about 2 1/2 minutes. When he asked about my kids, I chatted. I appreciated that he laughed at my jokes. I pulled out a picture. I’ll be honest, I gushed. What! Can I help it if my children are incredibly interesting and engaging?

It was like a really weird date, with me, my husband and some strange guy who was determined to befriend us.

The spiel

He shook his head. Acted very concerned about the timeshare situation we were already in. He didn’t want to alarm us. It wasn’t his place to trash talk the competition. Obviously, we are very giving and trusting people, without the keen business insight that is needed to navigate the treacherous timeshare game. Good thing we now have our brand new friend to help us.

As he proceeded to tell us about the company, there just HAPPENED to be pictures of his family there. And his dogs.

Now, I’m not much of an animal person, but I’ll tell you, those sad canine eyes were accusing me. Of wasting his time. Of denying him the commission he so desperately needs. You know, to feed his sad dogs. And his family. How could I do this to my new FRIEND? Why the heck are his dogs so pathetically depressed anyway?

The pressure

This is the part where you hear ALL about the amazing life that you will lead if you buy in (no prices shared of course, no matter how many times we asked). Apparently, the world is my oyster if I sign up. My children will have the wedding of their dreams. Paris will become my home away from home. And I will OWN a piece of paradise. My children will rise up and call me blessed. My children’s children will be brilliant and well-travelled because of our investment in their future.

Strongly implied is the fact that non-timeshare holders (or those like us who are with another company and are destined to be cheated, extorted and ultimately disappointed) will lead lives of sad desperation. There will never be time or money for a real holiday. The best we can hope for is quiet days spent huddled in a dank basement, braiding armpit hair into a scarf.

The deal

Eventually even the slickest salesman must put a price on it. Also the various comparisons and mental gymnastics we are put through to convince us that $50,000 is a ridiculous steal! Oh, and the $2000 yearly fee. If that is not exciting enough, they are generously offering to finance our investment at only 17%!

Now, I’m not much of a math girl, but my husband tells me that 17% of $50,000 will be $8,500 in interest that first year. With that much money, I’m pretty sure I could HIRE someone to braid me an armpit hair scarf.

Until they invent teleportation (after 3 red eye flights with a head cold I am deeply invested in this possibility) and food pellets for children (like for a fish: a week’s nutrition in one cheap, easy to serve patty), accomodation is only one small piece of the holiday puzzle. If we spend all our money on this timeshare, taking on additional debt (and, as a result, jobs and possibly bankruptcy), I’m not sure our vacation prospects will look up, no matter what our new friend and his shiny brochure promise.

In the end, I had to walk out. After 2 hours, my kids needed me and we were done with it all. I came back to sign the refusal paper and talk to yet another sales person about an even better deal (tip: be a hard sell and they will offer you something better). We were almost there a few times, but as we said many times throughout the whole process we are absolutely NOT going to buy anything.

So here’s me, timeshare presentation survivor and as rich (read: solidly middle class) as ever! And YES, the baby whale was totally worth it!


Make the Day Special

I used to LOVE Professional Development Days. No holiday parades, no special traditions, nothing to celebrate… just a regular, old Monday to the rest of the world, but a special treat for me. Perhaps it is a sadistic streak, but somehow it seemed MORE fun to have a day off of school when all the adults still had to work.

*Maniacal laugh. *Maniacal laugh.

Now the tables are turned.

Until today, I have had a flexible schedule and we usually manage to find something fun and special to do on Pro-D days. But now, I have a class I cannot miss, a husband who works in the city and very little patience for this crimp in my routine. We juggled and rearranged and made it work somehow, but I wasn’t exactly feeling the “special day” vibe.

The Everyday

This morning I rushed home from class, wrestled B onto the potty, obsessed about my upcoming Psych paper, debated the merits of wearing pants, lectured on completing homework BEFORE the very last minute, finally got everyone INTO pants, and pulled together lunch for three picky eaters (okay, fine, four picky eaters, but I’m the cook so it’s my right).

Suffice it to say, I felt naps all around would be a fun and special way to enjoy the day.

But they wanted an adventure. They wanted to DO something. They wanted to spend time with me. They were even willing to get out of the house and get some fresh air to do it.

If you have indoor kids like mine, who generally prefer reading, puzzles, crafts, talking on the phone, drawing… basically anything that doesn’t require them to get dirty or break a sweat, you know that you have to capitalize on these moments. It’s rare that I don’t have to force it. I like to set the timer: 1/2 – 1 hour and they are not to come back in until it is over. Sometimes they get into the spirit of things and forget to sneak back in, but all too often the time is spent staring mournfully through the sliding glass door and counting down the seconds. Huck Finn, eat your heart out!

Some of you may think I’m making this up. I’m not. While you are bribing and pleading and cajoling your children to read or sit still for just a few minutes, I’m doing the opposite. We all have our crosses to bear.

Fortunately, I understand this quiet/bookworm/homebody thing. After all, they probably get it from me.

But, I’m a grown up now. I know that it is good for everyone to get some exercise. I know we must enjoy every precious non-rainy moment the Pacific Northwest has to offer. I know we’ll feel better and they will fight less. So, I set aside my brilliant “napping” plan.

The Adventure

Today’s adventure consisted of a trip to a local playground and some geocaching in our neighbourhood (geocaching is like an online treasure hunt with GPS co-ordinates to follow). As we set out there were high spirits, joking and singing. And then there was me, dragging my feet and cursing the composer of the Duck song. “Heeeey! Bum, bum, bum.. Got any grapes?” If I never hear it again, it will be too soon.

With the offspring happily playing at the park, I did what any modern mother would do. I whipped out my iPhone and started checking up on the world. I could hear them laughing in the background as I clicked links on Facebook. An amazing article on a blog called Enjoying the Small Things.

It was uplifting. It said, “pay attention to what matters most.” It was inspiring. It reminded me to… Dance. Laugh. Enjoy each moment.

That’s when it hit me – I suck.

At life. Today, I suck at life.

Here I am, in a rare moment of sunshine, in the middle of the day, with my happy children who are actually enjoying each other. Instead of appreciating it, I am counting down the minutes until I can get back home to “get stuff done.” Instead of jumping in, I am huddled off to the side fiddling around with my iPhone, reading about other people’s lives.

I felt myself blush as I clicked off my phone, looking around to see if anyone caught my moment of personal douchebaggery.

If so, I hope they stuck around to see this middle-aged lady catch some serious air on the swings. Also, riding the see-saw for the first time in several decades. My almost 12-year-old can actually hold her own against me, though I’m pretty sure I bruised my butt. Just like the mature, dignified woman my parents raised me to be.

We hiked for blocks and blocks to find a new cache at the Royal Legion, which gave birth to a great discussion about veterans, memorials and death. We found a coin from the Rotary Club and talked about serving others.

We picked up sticks.

We crunched through leaves

We sang the Muppets theme song.

We made the day special.

I spend a lot of time feeling like I am the one serving my children; that motherhood is another duty on a long list of things to do. Today they reminded me that life is for living. While the rest of the schmucks slogged their way through ordinary, for those few hours I really lived.

I don’t think I need to wait for another Pro-D day to do it either.

So here’s me, do-do do-do-do, do do-do do… Mahna Mahna!


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