Friday, January 28, 2011

Kindness

Anyone that has been following Allie Chilling's Blog will know that our family has taken alot of strain over the last 6-8 weeks with the announcement that a sibling of mine is getting divorced. I don't believe anyone saw it coming, it hit us like a blow to the head (and heart). The family basically crawled into itself for weeks trying to come to terms with the news. We love the "in-law" dearly and the idea of the landscape of our family without them in it, is unthinkable.

I have watched people's reaction to the situation go from shock, to curious, to caring, to furious, to feelings of betrayal and to some even refusing any further friendship. I can understand all of those feelings.

Initially.

Then I was reminded of this verse:

"God’s kindness leads you to repentance”. (Rom.2:4)

I thought over the times that as a believer I made really rotten choices, disappointed myself and God, and felt like I had failed – and yet the kindness of God drew me back because I knew, deep down, how much He loved me. No, he didn’t like the behaviour, the actions or the words … I knew that, and had to deal with those things with Him, but I knew that they never separated me from Him.

I also knew that God would not abandon me – I belonged to Him, and when one of His is stumbling on their journey, is not the time that He withdraws His kindness – it’s the time that kindness grabs your hand.

As believers, if we truly represent the heart of God can we be his physical hand of kindness to others, even when its difficult, uncomfortable and we disagree, can we assist them back to the heart of God rather than leaving them on the side of the road, beaten and bruised, and pass by like we never knew them….. and trust God do the rest?


His unrelenting love towards us knows no bounds.

We are coming to terms with it now - it's not been easy, it's still not easy. We trust that when God says that He brings something beautiful out of even the worst situations, that He will do that - Cos He is an awesome God and if He says He will do something... Hey, I believe Him!
So, peace that passes all understanding for this journey, for us all.



Wednesday, January 26, 2011

About THAT Puppy....

It wasn’t long ago that in absolute blind desperation I penned this post.


Since that post our relationship with said “puppy owner” has suffered as we requested that the promises made would be kept. We were not hugely successful and eventually we made peace with the fact that the puppy would have to stay – definitely not for the "puppy owner" or for us – but for our other dog, who is 3 years old and who absolutely LOVES the puppy.

As the pup has grown, I have been training her and it’s been so much fun: She sits (owner-taught), but now we’ve also taught her to stay, and will more often than not, lie down if asked to, fetches the ball, and won’t take food from your hand until told that she may.


Obviously being only 3 months old, she is still easily overwhelmed with excitement and sometimes needs to be asked more than once to do what she is told – but hey – we never get our kids to listen to us the first time either!

The long and the short of it is – from not wanting this puppy, we have come to really enjoy her and she is fitting in beautifully now that adjustments have been made at home for her and for us.

Peace … in the home.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Ages & Stages

I {heart} being a mom.



There is nothing that can beat first seeing your little one, making eye contact and seeing them respond to your voice.

I have also never been as terrified as the day that I realised that I was responsible for keeping this little life alive: and not only alive, but committing to a journey to mould an individual into one who would be kind, gentle, compassionate, polite, considerate and thoughtful – an asset to society.

Their lives appear to be a series of stages that we travel through with them. We nurse them when they are sick, share with them in their joy, and cry for them when they are hurting, (and want to physically destroy anything or anyone who hurts them). On the other hand, we recognise their potential and encourage them to use their talents – we dream big dreams for them and back them in whatever activity they choose to explore. As they grow up, the stages change, exam pressure and curfews, using the car, money (etc) can turn you into their enemy rather than their ally in the blink of an eye. Bette Davis once said:

“If you have never been hated by your child,
you’ve never been a parent".

Occasionally we had to remember that we were not around to win a popularity contest. Saying “No” is a lot more difficult than the alternative. It’s so easy to want to give in and just say “Yes” and have a happy smiling child, than saying “No” and bearing their wrath. As parents we do ‘all the right things’, (or what we think are the right things at the time), sometimes we get it right and other times we don’t, and we may make decisions that we later regret, but always the choices are made out of LOVE.

It’s a new stage for us now – We have to make adjustments on how to parent a ‘live-at-home-working-girl’ who doesn’t want to share her life so much anymore, isn’t as happy to have a random hug from her mom, and would rather be anywhere else than at home. I’ve heard it’s all normal – but it doesn’t change the fact that it’s difficult to deal with after years of closeness, open conversation and sharing of our lives.

We've done our best to raise our little girl – now she
is an adult, spreading her wings and making a place for
herself in the world.

With her love for life and people we believe her future is bright and we trust that she will embrace her freedom and life with wisdom and with passion.

We are incredibly proud of her.
She is the best gift ever.

Peace... be this journey!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Note to Self...

Last year I joined the gym.
Don’t laugh.

I believe I am typical of the common person who joins in January filled with guilt and horror over the kilo’s they’ve gained for their sins in the past year. I am probably also typical in that it starts with fireworks and fizzles into a mere *poof* within a month.

Last year was extraordinary in that I actually WENT – well for 8 months anyway. I can take no credit for my determination. You see, I had some help from a higher power, i.e. A person with a camera. You all know that shot that shows your every bulge, the double chin, the batwings, the muffin top … oh dear Lord… all of those in ONE photo is enough to shock anyone into the parallel universe of gym bunnies and lycra – which is where I ended up, (minus the lycra and more of a guinea pig than a bunny, but at the gym none-the-less.)

I was so horrified by "the photo” that I actually became “one of those people” who have a gym routine, and something miraculous happened – I LOVED IT. (Not enough to ever wear lycra though.)

However, tragedy struck in that we went on holiday for about a month, which in itself was not tragic, it was awesome, but the tragedy was that I lost my gym mojo and it remained hidden for the balance of 2010.

Have you ever tried to GO BACK to gym… No? Well, it’s flippin’ difficult! As much as I know in my head how great it made me feel, the beckoning of, well, anything else really, felt more enticing than facing that treadmill. I know that there are people who will look down their noses at me and sneer “Treadmill? Hit the streets with the fresh air!” – but potholes, pavements and pedestrians don’t rate up there with me when I want to run. You may not understand – but that’s how it is.

So, here we are in 2011. I have been to gym two days in a row *faint* and that familiar *love/hate* thing is beginning again. So, today I am going to remind myself WHY I love going:

  1. I feel like I can conquer the world when I am finished (or at the very least, possibly the dishes)
  2. I feel lighter (only in step… but its going to happen!)
  3. I feel happy!... I realise this is like an hormonal thing, but who cares! Who doesn’t want to feel happy???
  4. I love that I have energy – more than normal even.
  5. I drink water!!! Now if you know me, you will know I hate the stuff. But I know its good for me and I do drink lots of it when I exercise.
  6. I love the music and meeting (or maybe just greeting) people there and getting to know them
  7. I love seeing I have a semblance of a muscle on my upper arms and calves!
  8. I love going to Woolies afterwards and finding really healthy food for supper. (The logic here is that I avoid shopping later, because we all know how much I love shopping…NOT!)
So next time I feel like gym is too much of a schlep…I’m going to remember “the photo" and read this “Note to Self” –” then give myself a good @$$-kicking, and send myself off to join the bunnies.

Have fun!
Peace.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Embracing Life in 2011

Every year, almost without fail, there is a website I visit www.flylady.net.
It’s sort of been my 'right of passage' to enter into a New Year.

By a simple click of the mouse I manage to articulate one of my hearts desires
without even opening my mouth.

Oh! To be organised, for everything to have its place...to be aproned up and humming while tasty food merrily simmers away ...*sigh* ... It’s all a fantasy because I could never be that person … every year I have to make peace with the fact that I just am not.

So this year, I have broken with my ‘right of passage’.

In the spirit of this, I was openly rebellious and bought myself a notebook which embraces who I really am.

Instead of wishing I could be some way else this year, I am going to embrace all the good stuff about being disorganised, like:

  • I am always finding things I thought I had lost ~ it’s like Christmas every day!
  • I can be spontaneous ~ I don’t have to say I can’t do something because I need to hang washing.
  • I don’t need to follow any schedule of chores: Washing Day doesn’t have to be Monday – who made that rule anyway? Tsk. :o)
  • I don’t have to feel guilty if I leave my coffee cup on the lounge table alllllllll day (and even overnight) – *I heard some of you gasp* :o) … SO WHAT! Tomorrow is another day.

Today I am thankful for who I am!

I have high hopes for my disorganised self that don’t involve domestic goddessness:

like making every day count,
like living in the moment I am in, whether it’s good or bad,
like learning to listen better and think more, especially before I speak,
like making fewer assumptions based on hearsay,
like extending kindness expecting nothing in return,
like laughing with friends and crying with friends,
like extending grace in the same way that I have received it.

Roll on 2011.. it's going to be a goodie!
Peace be the journey.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Puppy Blues.....

What to do?
I don’t want this puppy.
I don’t want this puppy.
I don’t want this puppy.


Yes, you’re thinking ….that face, so cute, how can you not want it?

We have had 21 years (and counting) of looking after our own child which is what parents do and we love it.


“I promise I will do everything.”How na├»ve I am.
How stupid.
  • The minute I let her in, she pees in 5 different places.
  • We end up feeding her and cleaning all the mess.
  • She ‘scratches’ in the kitchen water bowl and ends up with a pool all over the place that I have to clean up.
  • She chews my carpets and my furniture and terrorises the older dog to such a degree that he cowers and runs away if he even sees her, and we struggle to even get him into the garden for fear of her.
  • We never had white couches with a child – but have them now and they are in worse shape than they would have been with a kid, because the puppy insists on jumping on them, usually with wet paws after scratching in the water.
In short… she really has just ruined a small part of my life.
Granted, a small part, but it’s a part that we have earned.
The part that felt we are grown up now, as is our child, and finally we can just chill at home. We can put away ‘cleaning up after people and dogs’… but the truth is, it’s more work than a child of the equivalent age and I don’t have the grace for it that I would have with a child.




To top it all off – I just bought a lovely giant muffin from the Spar as a reward for cleaning up this morning and the blasted thing is RAW and SLOPPY in the middle.


Ah well, on the up-side..... One can still have coffee! :)

Take care,

Peace.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Cool Runnings


There is nothing quite like the pressure of finding a name.

A child's name ....
.....A pet's name
And now, good heavens, a blog name!

After many failed and cheesy attempts to come up with something fun and catchy, you can obviously see I settled on "Cool Runnings".

"Why? WHY?"
Have you not seen the movie (I ask with tears in my navy blue eyes?)
It means 'Peace be the journey' and since this life is a journey, both physically and spiritually, and because I love to travel - it seemed like an appropriate name.

I'm not going to attempt to make an impact by being wildly funny or philosophical this first time. I will save that epic fail for another time ~ basically when I know what I am doing.

I'm going to quit while I'm ahead.

Till next time
Peace be your journey ...