Monday, December 28, 2009

Three Little Chicks, Not a Goose

Mistress Marge, so in charge.
How do you make it so?
With lots to say, you go all day,
For you it's all part of the show.

Mistress Mona, how you groan.  A
Full sentence do we desire.
Find a word, that can be heard,
And we'll give you just what you require.

Minnie, Minnie, what's the skinny?
Your blue eyes are always aglow.
They push you down, and boss you around,
But a smiling face you always show.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Excercise Carol

The thought was...I'll escape from my routine for just a little while today and give myslef some time to take care of ME.  Get in a workout!  Seemed like a good idea at the time but barely 45 seconds into my punishment at the hands of an old Tae-Bo dvd all I could think about was one of my favorite Christmas carols...

Said the night wind to the little lamb...

   I'm not in my normal excercise space today.  This one has beautiful sunlight streaming in from all directions and it makes a wonderful reflective surface of the large TV I'm jumping, kicking and punching in front of.  What I see is inspiring.  I am getting a rather self-centerd kick out of looking at my nicely toned arms pumping and driving those teeny hand weights towards the ceiling.  Michele Obama eat your heart out!!!  Do you see what I see?  When reality hits, that large reflective surface I was SO loving 3 minutes ago begins to reflect things like the skin from 3 pregnancies hanging over my waistband and a face so red from huffing and puffing my way to Christmas bliss that Santa may forgo Rudolph this year and let "Nancy the red faced mommy" lead the troops! 

Said the little lamb to the shepherd boy...

   There's a beautifully decorated Christmas tree in my excercise space today.  One adorned with large jingly things that sparkle with the festive air they lend to the tree.  Do you hear what I hear?  That soft jingle each time I jump and let fly my round house kick makes me feel a bit like a Christmas ninja. 

Said the sheperd boy to the mighty king...

   There's a lot less of me than there has been in Christmases past.  Over the last year I have reinvented my body and for the first time in my whole life feel like my outside truly matches my inside.  Five clothing sizes and more than 40 pounds later I am less of a woman than I used to be.  Do you know what I know?  Here is what I is particularly unnerving how my activity on this day makes this gorgeous Christmas tree shake and shudder like a Southern California spruce during the big quake of 1994.
Said the king to the people everywhere...

   In this season of crazy, busy, errands, get ready for company, clean up from company, pack, un-pack, shop, hide, wrap, unwrap, list, bake, burn, re-bake, slice bread, slice finger, drop bread butter side down, pour milk, clean up spilled milk, get directions, get lost, get there late, pick up, drop off, have yourself a merry little Christmas you must know this.  Find yourself some time to move your body.  We spend alot of time sweating the small stuff during the holidaze.  Listen to what I say!!!  Its nice to have a good reason to sweat!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Fairer Still the Moonlight...

"Fair is the sunlight, fairer still the moonlight."

Sunshine is amazing, but moonlight is a gift of special light.  The glow of something that has no actual light of its own seems like an impossibility.  On this longest night of the year, the illuminating moon can be a lesson for when we feel like our own light is dimmed.  Or for when we feel like our own light has gone out.  We can still give light even as we reflect the light of others.  In the darkness, the moon is not just a frozen rock circling the Earth.  It gives light.  The challenge for us is to look for a light source in the dark space and reflect it back like the moon does.  The moon will always have the sun.  The moon does not just wait for the night to be over so the sun can come up again.  It gives us light in the dark.  Turn into yourself tonight as you turn in to your bed and decide if you're just waiting.  What can you be doing while you wait?  What light can you reflect?

Solstice 2009, sunset at 4:34pm here in the Middle

Little Bo Peep Has Lost Her Sleep

Wither and weep, I've lost so much sleep,
And have not one clue where to find it;
Leave me alone, I'll lay here and moan,
And take all the rest I can get.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Jingle This!

I have been called a Christmas Freak and a compulsive decorator.  Not untrue.  I have been told I am obsessed with trees that have lots of tiny white lights.  Guilty.  I currently have 18 of said trees in my home.  I have been on the receiving end of many rolled eyes and sighs of disgust when upon the packaging up of the leftover turkey on Thanksgiving day I bust out my CDs of Christmas music.  "Can't we just wait until tomorrow at least?" they ask.  No.  We can't.

But yesterday I received a first.  Yesterday was the first time anybody ever told me I was like a Christmas squirt gun.  The blank look on my face must have pushed this Scrooge to elaborate because she went on to say I was like a Christmas squirt gun because nobody sees me coming.  I walk up to a crowd of people just standing there doing their thing and unload my sparkle, sprinkle, tunes for humming, have a tree shaped cookie, hold this Christmas pillow while I take your picture because it looks so cute with your sweater attitude.  Um.  Ok.  That's me.  But is that so wrong?  I come by it honestly.  My mother has actually been known to decorate people if they sit still for long enough on her couch during a holiday gathering and they had the audacity to show up without enough sparkle.

Fine, Scrooge.  If I'm the squirt gun.  What are you?   The sponge?  If you are, then look out, because I have an endless supply of warm holiday cheer that will flow out all over your little parched self and fill you up allowing you to achieve the life dream of any sponge (to be hot and full)!  I can decorate, frost, bedeck, sprinkle, sparkle, string up,light up, wrap up, and sing out until you are begging to be rung out because you simply cannot wipe up any more celebratory juice!

So, Scrooge, I'll take your compliment!  I'll be the Christmas squirt gun, but look out because I'm not just your ordinary squirt gun.  I'm a holiday Super Soaker!  Jingle That!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fits Me to a Tea

Why is it that when you tell someone you drink a pot and a half of coffee everyday before noon they gasp and judge?  Why do they roll their eyes and make some sort of comment about your need for caffeine? 

I'm basically a good person.  I eat whole grains whenever possible.  I check my smoke detectors twice a year, wear my seat-belt and compost my kitchen scraps.  Good yeah?  What right does somebody with fewer children than me, or more hours to sleep, or less responsibility, or more 80 degree weather have to judge my caffeine consumption?

They give you crap about your coffee habit, those nay-sayers out there...shame on them.  But when you off handedly mention that you drink cup after cup after cup of Chai black tea with just a touch of sweet all seriously all day, my hot water kettle is fulfilling its life dream of always being hot and full, which is basically a good life dream for everyone but I get all of these welcoming supportive statements like "Ooo, which one do you buy?" and "Oh I am SO a tea drinker too!" or "It's so calming isn't it?"

Not fair.  People have never judged my preference for chocolate over vanilla, geometry over algebra, blue-eyed boys over brown-eyed ones or Manolos over Louboutins.  What's the deal with coffee versus tea. 

Love, love, LOVE my Chai.  But my pot and a half of Costco light roast fits me to a "T"!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

All I Want for Christmas Is...

What I really want for Christmas cannot be purchased in a store.  Cue the sappy instrumental background music.  It doesn't come in a box and wouldn't even hold a bow.   

No.  What I really want for Christmas is one whole day.  One.  Whole.  Day.  Where someone else makes all the decisions.  Every single decision.  I don't want to be shielded from my life or to have someone take care of me for the whole day...that's not realistic right now.  I'm all for pitching in.  I can make lunch.  I just don't want to have to decide what's being served.  I'll change a diaper.  Just don't ask me to decide whether or not the baby needs to be changed.

I'm giddy with the thought of it.  To go one whole day and not have a single interrogative sentence aimed in my direction.  Not a single; Should we?  Which one?  Can they?  What will they?  When will?  What time will we?  How many?  Are we?  What's for?  Etc.

And if I can't have that, maybe someone could get a small buzzer for my stocking that I can zap at people when they ask me things like, "Should I make hot dogs or Pb&j for the girls?"  I don't care.  They are equally good and bad, satisfying and uninteresting.  I don't care, someone else decide.  "Do you want coffee?"  I don't care.  Would it taste good.  Yes.  Could I live without it.  Yes.  Bring it or don't bring it.  Someone else decide?  "Should we take the stroller?"  "Should they get water or milk?"  "What channel should we watch?"  "Jeans or khakis?"  I don't care.  I don't care.  I don't care.  I really don't care.  For this one whole day.  I don't care.

To the potential giver of this gift I will make this pledge.  I promise that I will, with a smile, choke down something I don't want to eat, participate in an activity that I would have passed on, watch a TV show I hate and wear clothes that don't match if someone else would just make the decision and leave me out of it.

That, is what I really want for Christmas.  Please Santa.  I've been such a good girl this year.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

If You're Happy and You Know It...

Ok.  So I wasn't going to do this.  But it's my blog and I can write whatever makes me feel good.  AND THIS MAKES ME FEEL SOOOOOOOOO GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!  Whew!  Breath.


As of the middle of last week, when you type "The Middle Bit" in the Google search bar, my blog is the first hit!  WooHoo!   I keep searching it again and again because selfishly I love to see that my bit is now the first bit and secretly I'm afraid somehow it will stop working.

For the past few months I have been carving out a very selfish 30 minutes every few days to compose my thoughts.   That time is my time and I'm owed it for all the time I spend on everyone else.  That time is spent collecting my thoughts and ideas, my musings, rantings and witty attempts at poetry and putting them out there because I feel they are mostly worthy of your time.  Sounds very self-centered.  Noted.

I have come to realize that the only way to have a centered self, to feel good about what's left of my core after I take care of everyone else, is to be a bit self-centered once in awhile.  My self has weight that tips the scale back to level when I start leaning so far over with everyone else's needs that I'm feeling out of balance.  My selfless acts pile up on me sometimes and I begin to see less and less of my self.  The Middle Bit is the self-centered bulls eye right in the midst of it all that reminds me that I'm still here.

Who claps for me?  Today?  Some of you.  Thanks. apparently and  WooHoo!  And me.  I'm happy and I know it!  The best things happen in the middle.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Minnie's Beans

Minnie, my small black bean eater,
Off her high chair she did teeter;
When eating too much did discover,
Her bloats of gas, they made her hover.

Minnie, my small black bean eater,
Found another legume sweeter;
She switched her beans from black to jelly,
And found her toots were not so smelly.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Diamonds Aren't the Only Gem a Mother Can Use

Are you in need of some "bling" this holiday season?  Here a couple of pearls of wisdom no mother should live without.

If you ever discover that your child has inserted a small object (marble, pea, raisin, Polly Pocket purse, pebble, etc.) into any part of their body that you are brave enough to attempt retrieval from...check every orifice on that child and every orifice in the room on any other child.

If you ever find yourself some time to take a hot bath (forget the candles and the book, that won't be happening any time soon) and you think you're saving yourself time by leaving the rubber ducks and the naked Barbies in the tub...take them out!  It doesn't take that much time to put them away and I guarantee you will be bothered by the bobbing quackers and the plastic women whose thighs are smaller than yours.

Bring it!  Even if you're sure you won't need it!  When that little voice inside your head suggests something...listen to it!  Bring the extra diaper, the granola bar, the stroller, the extra undies (for everyone), the Bed Bath and Beyond coupon, the kotex, the umbrella, the plastic potty, the quarters for goat food at the zoo.  Just bring it and roll your eyes when someone has the audacity to tell you that you've brought too much stuff.

If you ever get the notion to clean the glass on the sliding door...clean the outside first.  If you don't, and you think you're saving time by starting on the inside, then by the time you get to the outside, your squeaking and rubbing will likely have attracted enough attention from little people who will want to press their jelly coated fingers and snotty noses against the newly cleaned glass to see what you're doing outside and all of your initial efforts will have been literally wiped away and you'll have to do it over anyway.  Start outside.

When the toy catalogs begin coming in the mail or the weekly flyers fall out of the Sunday newspaper resist the temptation to hand them over to your children.  Yes, it will buy you a few minutes of peace.  Yes, they will beg you for the chance to look through them and tell you what they really want.  Resist.  Even in the name of literacy.  The ToyRUs flyer is not a book.  The American Girl catalog is not a book.  Resist.  Then recycle.

If you want to like what you see when you look at your children...then watch yourself.  Your children will do what you do and they will say what you say.  But they will never.  Never.  Do what you say.  If you are how you want them to be, then you will like what you see.

Some gems of motherhood are like heirlooms that get passed down to you, others have always truly been owned by you, a few are borrowed from friends when you really need them.  Have you got another gem to add to my treasure?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

On a Goose Chase or a Quest

Young Mommy Me, when
She wanted to rest,
Would dash off to yoga
In her fine Nissan Quest.

A gander too messy, in
A life filled with poo,
From the tips of her nails,
To the sole of her shoe.

The Quest is much better,
Like a symbol each day,
Of the journey of Motherhood,
Now, up and away!

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Big O

Sometimes they last longer than you expected.  Sometimes they become such a part of your routine that you hardly notice them.  Oprah?  Hardly.  Nope.  It's not that other thing either!  Shame on you, this is a respectable blog.  I had a Big O today and the thing about it was, it started out as one kind of O and ended up as quite another.

I'm talking about obligations.  The O that rears its ugly head at this time of year and makes me do things like cry out in pain, cook overly large poultry and take multiple tuxedos to the cleaners.  What is difficult to remember when I'm standing in the kitchen for 4 hours making a Norwegian holiday treat that only I know how to make, or when I'm standing in line at Kohl's because they're having the Biggest Sale of the Season, or when I'm readying our home for yet another round of company, is that it's all about perspective.  When all I see looming over me are obligations that big O can be obnoxious.  Overwhelming.  But when my super powers are serving me well, I can see those obligations as opportunities.  And that's what happened yesterday.        

I had the opportunity to have 4 hours to myself yesterday morning while I mixed, rolled, grilled and assembled the obligatory Scandinavian treat.  I played holiday music too loud and did some shamelessly bad, braless dancing while I waved my lefse sticks in the air.  My obligations last week had me standing in line at Kohl's?  Opportunity?  One word.  Kegels.  No thirtysomething women ever wants to miss that opportunity.  Tonight after my children go to bed I'll be vacuuming again in preparation for the cocktail party we're having.  I'm actually looking forward to taking the time to enjoy how beautiful my home looks when its decorated for the holidays and will remember that it is nice to have people who want to be in my home with me.
Event + Response = Outcome

Math is not my gift, but this equation has the perfect solution.  I can't change the event, but I can alter my response.  Seeing obligations as opportunities.  Shifting my response so I can change the outcome.  That's a Big O I'll grab hold of every time.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Super Powers

"You're amazing!" he said to me.  "Moms must have super powers!"  Yes.  Thank you.  Moms DO have super powers, just not the ones he was thinking of. 

Super Power #1- The ability to NOT hear
The thumping tells you they're jumping on the bed, which they are NOT supposed to do, but they have been happily playing together for more than 20 minutes so you don't hear it.

Super Power #2- The ability to NOT see
Standing just around the corner you witness the little one standing up to the big one and belting her in the stomach after a toy is ripped from her grasp.  Nobody screams.  Nobody cries.  The big one gets what's coming and the little one gets her toy back.  You didn't see it.

Super Power #3- The ability to NOT feel
You don't feel the elbow in you neck when they come in at full speed for a crushing toddler hug.  You take the hug.  That tiny pause in the go go go lifestyle of a toddler.  They're wonderful.  You don't feel the gross wet spot leftover from open mouth baby kisses.  That little face coming in for love.  It's wonderful.  You don't feel it.  

Super Power #4- The ability to move VERY slow
In a classic foot race between you and the three year old who is running her little heart out, you convincingly run so slow that she is able to beat you over and over and over again.  The giggles of glee are too good to be missed and you can't outrun her.  You are too slow.

Super Power #5- The ability to remove stains, smudges and crust with only the power of your spit.
The cleansing powers of "Mom Spit" are truly miraculous.  Enough said.

Super Power #6- The ability to NOT remember
No matter what happened before the nap, or yesterday, or 5 minutes ago, moms have the amazing ability to forget about all of it and begin again.

All that being said, Mom Kryptonite can take many forms; exhaustion, being "on hold" with the cable company, puking kids, traveling spouses, in-laws, PMS, and several others.  Mom Kryptonite takes different forms and can weaken all powers instantly causing pain and suffering to all.

Yes, moms DO have super powers.  But I think I'll skip the skimpy outfit and just wear the cape!  Thank you very much!!!