Monday, January 26, 2015

Bemma says "come"

There was once  little, tiny girl named Bemma. She was smaller than everyone around her, though that rarely kept her down. Yes, she had to look up every time someone called her name, but she saw no importance in that. In fact, with her tininess she could fit into many places others could not and could climb things that others could not, albeit with some huffing and puffing. One great advantage to being little tiny was that the bigger people seemed to think it made her 'cute' and therefore rarely said no when she complained of being tired and asked to be held.

Yes, being tiny had its conveniences.

She may have been little but she saw no determinant in her size to anything she wanted to do or get done. It did not keep her from learning to talk, although it seemed the big people around her often smiled at her when she did speak and rarely did what she said unless she screamed it at a high pitch. The one she called Papa usually regretted making her scream so much that he almost always compensated what he said no to by giving her chocolate.

Ah, chocolate. What Bemma called "come." At first, for some reason the big one called Mama cringed each time Bemma said "come, come" but she soon got over it and was herself calling chocolate come in order to be understood by Bemma at times. You must understand that Bemma is on her way to being trilingual and while she is ready to talk and said quite a bit in her own way, she had yet, at the time this story was written, to master many words that the big people understood. She usually mastered them by way of repitition until her tongue could manage to position itself correctly and repeat. This happened with the word up one day as she climbed the stairs one step at a time, her older sister repeating "up, up" to encourage her along. Finally Bemma's tongue repeated it correctly, making all those around her clap and smile. From that day on she made it a point to say "up" whenever she could.

With chocolate this same sister was one evening encouraging Bemma to come along faster as they made their way from school to the dance studio, walking. "Come, Bemma, come," the sister said, every other step giving the small one a candy-coated circle chocolate. This was an encouragement that Bemma liked a lot and was quite proud of herself when she managed to repeat "come" with several of this sweet circles in her mouth. From then on whenever someone asked her to "come" she ran to the corner in the kitchen where Mama usually keeps the sweet things. Soon she figured out that the big people say this word "come" for other meanings, but she chose to only use it when meaning one thing: something dark and sweet.

Thursday, January 22, 2015


Over at Mama Kat's Losin' It one of the writing prompts today was:

If you could have given yourself a snapshot five years ago of what your life is like now, what would the picture be of and how do you think you would have felt about it?

I am all over this one. 

Five years ago I was six months preggers with my second and about to move to France. Wha! That was five years ago!!!! Wow.

Back then I complained in my head about my long mommy days and how tired I was and how little time I had to do stuff. I told people I couldn't get much work done at home when really I had simply stopped trying and instead had turned my efforts to blogging and reading blogs. I still read the news....

If I could have handed myself a snapshot of now with two more kids, homework, a BURNING desire to work, Principe's RIDICULOUS working hours, the state of my house, the perpetual laundry, the fighting between siblings, the dinner cooking I have come to hate, etc, I am pretty sure....

...I am a stubborn person so I would have had the two more kids anyway. BUT perhaps the snapshot could have encouraged me to learn to manage my time a bit wiser WHILE I HAD THE TIME! I mean, looking back one kid sounds like heaven. I didn't have to put her to nap at the same time everyday just because I would have to wake her to go get siblings. Nope, nap could be later or earlier, no big deal. And because of that I didn't have to sprint to the store, by-passing the park because we don't have time, etc. I didn't have to run with her in my arms to get one sister at ballet and another at judo. Nope, evenings were what we wanted. Usually spent playing animals or coloring. 

   Wow, seriously sounds easy now. I was 28 and still rather judgemental and still kinda thought I knew a lot more than I actually did. The snapshot would have helped lower me off the soapbox. Not very gently either. Looking at the snapshot I would have been horrified at how much I end up yelling or how little patience I can have with homework or with the little one whining. Again, I had lofty ideas and little experience. Perhaps the snapshot would have led me to bettering myself a lot sooner, perhaps. Perhaps not. I was one of those that thought I could only learn if I was going to class. Now, I know better.

 I might have been horrified for a moment by the state of the house, the amount of time spent running errands, the homework and the countless evenings spent husbandless, but then my eyes would be opened to the three blessings, the salary raise that made it possible for me to go home often, the awesomeness that is now youtube, podcasts and kindle. The great husband that still adores me no matter how crazy I get and the awesome changes that God is bringing about. The snapshot might instill initial fear, but the bright side would gleam through within seconds and I would continue on the same path, choosing to change little (thought I totally should have learned to manage time and organize my house and.....)

Thursday, January 15, 2015


For the past few years, especially around this time of the year and even more especially in the "mom" circles around this time of year I have heard people talking about contentment.

Learning to be content with their jobs (inside or out of the home).

Learning to be content with their husbands or marriage.

Learning to be content with the state of their house.

Learning to be content....blah, blah, blah.

And I actually felt bad at first that I hadn't thought of learning to be content. While I have not always been the hardest studier or the hardest worker (I quit my first few jobs for really stupid, um, I've got a basketball game I wanna go to because this guy is really hot and I want to see him play.....yeah, sixteen year old me....SHUT UP!) But I have never been really content with where my life was at. I wanted to push harder. While there were periods that I was like "Oh my gahhhhh! Just try to accept that being a mom is hard and your apartment is tiny and you have no time!!!!" So I tried.

I really tried.

But it just ended up pissing me off. Well, not at first. At first I was content. I put writing books away and said I wouldn't pick it up again for a few years because simply trying to find the time to write was making me mad. So I allowed myself to put it away. Which was okay and something I needed to do. But then it wasn't okay because I had the rights back to my book that was never marketed and I had stories in my head and I needed to write but couldn't find time and everyone was telling me to try and learn to be content but I wasn't content with the fact that I couldn't find time to read or felt bad when I did or find time to write or felt bad when I did or find time to even put lotion on because I kept telling myself that I needed to learn to be content with not having the time right now to do that because it was more important to play legos with my kids and I just found myself slipping into resentment.

Which is NOT the same as contentment.

At all.

Perhaps I took all the contentment content in the wrong way. But seriously the blogs and posts and articles about learning to be content with small kids was ruining my life.

Because I don't think contentment is really what people are looking for, even those who authored those articles and posts. Contentment means to be "satisfied with what one is or has; not wanting more or anything else.

I don't know about you but I am not content. I want more. I want more than just cleaning toilets. I want more than just telling myself stories as I cook. I want more than getting by in French. I want more than looking at a book on my night stand. I want more than always being late. I want more than just going to church twice a year. I want more than self-publishing and getting lost in the slush pile of

And I don't think that's bad. And now that I am good with not being content I am much ...happier, of all things, which is what I think those who are trying to reach contentment are actually talking about. Because changing yourself, pushing yourself, moving things forward and encouraging others to do the same is good. We humans are not meant to stay the same or to stop moving. We are to constantly be moving and to be moving FORWARD. So no, I am not content. But I am happy now that I don't feel the need to BE content!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

New? Year


New year. New resolutions. 

There is something about January that makes us feel like everything should be different and brighter. We are all set to lose weight, earn more money finish that degree, run that marathon, etc. I know. I feel it too. Got my list of resolutions and my determination.

And yet as we get back into school and work and the winter blahs I see that nothing is actually different 

It still takes me an hour to get Chatterbox down to bed, I am still struggling to find a way to convince my kids to obey and cooperate without yelling at them (and usually failing miserably), I still feel the day slipping by without getting much work done, I still find myself eating whatever is on hand instead of sitting down and making something healthy for lunch....

Nothing is new. Old habits are so hard to break. They need more than one night filled with champagne drinking, grape eating and fireworks (that's rockin it Spanish style on New Year's Eve) to be broken. 

So I am doing things a bit differently. Vision board up. Spending time to get things posted up on it. Getting up early. Fighting for my territory. 

AKA pushing myself to use the patience I know I have but don't use, fighting to use my time wisely, fighting to find a way to show my little family how much I love them, fighting to take care of myself by exercising and eating right.

This year I will be fighting harder than ever. Which won't take much since I don't think I ever really fought for any of these things before now. I never fought. I just wished they would happen. And they didn't because it takes more than written down resolutions. It takes a fight. And this year I'm fighting.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Take some time....

I am sleep training Chatterbox. She's a tough one to settle down for the night, usually taking about an hour of my time.

It's frustrating.

And easy to run out of patience.

I combat my patience barometer lowering by doing...push-ups.

I'm serious. Weird, I know. But I want stronger arms and one night I was so frustrated I needed to do something. I felt like I was wasting an hour of my night and felt resentment starting to build. So I did some tricep dips. 8 to be exact. Then 8 more.

That was a few weeks ago. I can now do 15 three times through. So I started doing regular push ups. I can now do at least 17 on my toes without stopping. Not that impressive but I have seen change...:)

Now, the problem this week is that I started to add pike push-ups. Where you are basically in downward dog and you push down at an angle. Hits the shoulders. Hard.

My shoulders are so sore it hurts to lie down on a pillow. And yet I was dumb enough not to send Principe with the stroller when he dropped off Chatterbox and had to carry her at least half of the way home. Its almost a mile....

AHHHH! Anyone have a remedy for sore muscles? Or for idiocy while we're at it???