Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mother Teresa's Anyway Poem

"If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous; 

Be happy anyway."

Mother Teresa's Anyway Poem

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self centered;
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you've got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

There is so much to say about this poem, but the line I quoted at the top is what has been rolling around in my mind for days.

Most of the time when I don't post for a long time it's because I'm busy. 
Some of the time I use busy as an excuse for not posting.
Sometimes I don't post because I feel like I HAVE found serenity and happiness.
Which doesn't always make interesting blog posts, and sometimes makes people jealous.
So, rather than share my joy I keep it to myself because I have so much MORE than other people, or I have what they want...
but that's not what Mother Teresa said to do.
Because that's not what the Bible says to do.

"You are the light of the world.  A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead they put it on a stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:14-16

Coincidentally, while looking for this passage, I found Mark 4:25, "Whoever has will be given more, whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him," 

I feel like I am on the receiving end of "more," that I "have," and have been given "more." More family, more love, more children, more health, more happiness and it all of that, serenity. 

I haven't written because I've been enjoying MORE of what God has given me - more boys, more life, more adventures, more love than I imagined!

And I am happy.

Busy, tired, and happy.  

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Fireworks Experiment

Experienced twin parents tell us that it is important to give each twin individual time with parents. Until our recent move to Michigan, it's been very difficult to do. Now that we are near two sets of doting grandparents, it's easier (but to be honest, we are trying to catch up on lots of lost dating time when it comes to grandparents' sitting!) 

Last Saturday was the perfect opportunity to give M a chance to be with us at the Bay City Fireworks. Mom volunteered to watch C so we could take the twins, but we left N behind because of his abject terror of loud noises. The fireworks is a 6-hour outing, what with everything involved at this particular AWESOME display, so we took M, our child of boundless energy and unlimited enthusiasm.

My previous post had the photos of that event, so I won't upload again. But I will add that the "blinko-Blinko" vendor set up shop directly in front of the long porta johns's line, directly in front of us. Uncle D graciously bought the kids each a blinking necklace rope. You couldn't not, really...he was 6 feet in front of us!

I enjoy these special rare times we get to spend with our children individually. That's when I see how truly awesome, kind, generous, thoughtful and caring they are toward us and others. Honestly, it kind of feels like I'm in one of those made for TV family movies where the kids are well behaved and cute and say funny things that make people nearby smile and snicker. Because when we are all together, and one of them is doing something sweet, I'm taking the other to the bathroom, or changing a diaper, or cleaning a get the idea. 

Since N had a sleepover at grandma's, he didn't really know what he was missing, or care when we said the fireworks are very VERY loud. Loud noises scare the tar out of him, so much so that when thinks there MIGHT be a loud noise coming, he covers his ears. He dislikes groups of kids singing, and  the driveway fireworks our neighbor had last year drove him to tears. He quivered in our laps watching the fireworks from our driveway....a mile away.

Sunday morning, when he saw the blinko-blinko, and talks 1000 words a minute M filled him in on all the fun he missed, guess who wanted to go?

Tonight is the night. The Corn Fest's opening night has fireworks just a few blocks away in just a few minutes. Hubs dragged him in the wagon wearing M's blinko-blinko, who graciously handed it over (when prompted), saying, "have fun at the fireworks!"

It was so cute it nearly brought tears to my eyes.

Until he melted down as they walked away.  Not cute anymore.

They should start any minute now...I hope they make it through the set. N has been such a good boy. Last night was his first dry night in underpants. For those of you who have been reading since January 2012, you know I never thought I would live to see this day. And the very next day, he's out past bedtime conquering a fear! 

Monday, July 8, 2013

No Place Like Home

 We are filling up the summer with fun family activities!

Since we've moved, the twins are asking where our "new" paddlewheel boat is (we cruised the St. Croix in Stillwater last summer) where are new Mall of America is (uh...Midland Mall?  It has an Auntie Anne's...) and where our new Zoo is.  So we have been searching for replacements!

 Last week the Princess Wenonah began giving FREE morning history cruises on the Saginaw River, so we went "all aboard" and took a boat ride!  It wasn't a's actually a retired ferry boat, but it's about as close as we are going to get right now.  That's Aunt L walking C on the boat, the same thing she did 3 summers ago when we took the one year old twins on a Mississippi River Cruise in Minneapolis!  C is *this close* to walking - he has actually taken a couple of steps accidentally!  Very soon he's going to let go and find out how fun walking really is!
I cut my first molar last week, too!

 N climbed up a stack of chairs to peer out the porthole~
 Grandma A, C, Hubs, N is hanging out the window in both photos here, M in Aunt L's lap.  It was a special cruise because we watched the bridge open up to allow a TANKER ship to pass under and by our boat, then we saw a red and green tugboat, too!

Below, that's Me, N, C, and M all lined up in the back of the loaner Ford Escape we had for a week because my van was in the shop for recall repairs.  The boys thought it was hilariously fun, but I am very happy to have my van back this morning!!!
 Saturday we checked two summer bucket list items off: the Saginaw Children's Zoo and the Bay City Fireworks.  Unfortunately, I forgot to take the Nikon to the zoo.  Fortunately, we bought a family season pass so we will back.  It is not at all comparable to the MN Zoo, but the boys LOVED it and it was just the right size for our gang!  When asked their favorite parts, M answered,
"The train ride!" (obviously)
N answered, "The elephant!"

The what????? 

The largest animal there was the cow, for goodness sakes!  Even the MN Zoo doesn't have an elephant.  Sheesh.

Then we had a backyard picnic and sprinkler bonanza with the grandparents K. 
 Great Grandma K reads M The Cat in the Hat.
 Mom and Dad K play mancala.  Score is currently 1-1.  C and N had a sleepover at the K's so that we could take M with us to the Bay City Fireworks with the A's.  M was in heaven being an only child for a night!
 He made friends quickly though, with the other kids from our church who were also there.  Here we are waiting for fireworks, the kids are throwing snap-its on a tiny piece of concrete randomly next to our blankets!
Smile, J! 

Uncle D and Aunt J relaxing in the wagon seat

 We didn't mean to, but wound up parking ourselves in front of the port a john's.  Good thing, too, because the 4 year olds "needed" to go about every 30 minutes.  Ugh.  Thank goodness for "hanitizer!" And thank goodness it turned out to be AWESOME seats!
Cutie pic of M and Hubs and Grandma A watching the fireworks.  Don't forget the clop-clops!
The Bay City Fireworks are hands down the very best fireworks I have ever, ever seen in my life.  It's been 9 years since I've seen them and I just have to say...

there's no place like home.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

There Once Was a Lady Who Lived in a Shoe

I was thinking of asking you, people who are there, people who have been there, this question:

How do you keep your house clean when you have three small children living it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week?

Then I laughed at my own thought!  Because I would laugh at someone who was trying to keep her house clean with three little kids - little tazmanian boys -  in it who never leave - not for daycare, not for school, not for anything.  And if they are not in the house, I am out of it, taking them somewhere because I just cannot stay in the house with them and their mess for another minute!

So instead of cleaning the bathroom, starting the bedding laundry, unloading the dishwasher, changing the rest of the sheets, I am writing you about this absurd idea that I cannot let go of.  

The idea that my house should be clean.  Really clean.
(Because, I mean, it's clean enough....)

Where do I get that?


I was a slobby kid and a messy teenager, but I still managed to get good grades and marry a winner.  When did I decide that I had to be a neat freak? (I think it was during my 7 years of child free marriage when I enjoyed a clean house.  I kind of got used to it...)

And I'm not a freak.

I do NOT lose sleep at night because I'm awake, mopping the floors or dusting the blinds.

Far from it.  

I just want some order.

Some shred of decency so that I when I look around, I feel like I've got it together.

That I'm not the stereotypical crazy lady who doesn't shower or clean her house because she lives in a shoe and has so many children she doesn't know what to do.

So I showered.  And I'm brewing a second cup of coffee.  And I just put Sesame Street on for the twins.  I have until 10:55 to get something accomplished if the baby keeps sleeping.

My mom knows.  She bought me this:

 It's hanging in my kitchen, ironically, directly above C's high chair spot.  And if you have a one year old in a high get the irony.

My mom was there 30 years ago so I know she gets it.  And now her house is clean.  So I guess in 30 years mine will be, too.  (Sigh)