Thursday, August 21, 2014

An Open Letter to Summer

"HOW WAS YOUR SUMMER?"
Every teacher everywhere: "Way too fast!"


Dear Summer,

You clever little fellow. Every year you get me. 

As the snow falls in February, the hint of your name soothes the savage beast inside of me raging with cabin fever. Your intoxicating scent is often brought through a burning flame of a candle fabricated to smell like the sand and lapping waves that welcomes my feet each and every time. I allow myself to get lost in daydreams of sunbeams and a delayed moon. Fireflies will often dance through my mind as I watch the snow flakes settle on the previously shoveled mounds. I long for extended hikes with mud underfoot and a symphony of birds all around me. Crystal, chlorinated water calls to me...welcoming a multitude of cannonballs and breath-holding contests. I love getting caught red-handed after discovering wild raspberries ripe for the picking. You are by all stretches of the imagination, an open door to new adventures and the promise of much needed renewal. 

And then you arrive. The wait is over. You always ease me in...slowly. Warming me up to the thought that you'll be around for a full nine weeks. But then something happens. A fast forward button is pressed, a time machine is altered, a worm hole is opened and POOF! You are gone. Before the raspberry stains are completely faded from my fingers, I hear the school bell ring.  Buses circle like flies as waves of backpacks race toward them. Bird harmonics have been replaced by alarm clocks. It's time. 

My internal conflict of carefree vs. the slight longing for structure is ever raging.  So, I bid you adieu. I thank you softly and often begrudgingly for the short time we had together. I start the countdown the moment you leave until we meet again. And I fool myself. Yes I do. I tell myself next year will be longer. It's better that way. 

So until we meet again, my tricky little fellow, I'll bask in your glow. Be well and be warm. 

Longingly yours, 

Mel




Friday, August 15, 2014

Ketchup With Us

It's time for Ketchup With Us. Hosted by Michele and me on the 1st & 15th each month, our link-up gives you TWO ways to play: (A) Write about a big FIRST you've had OR (B) Link up an old favorite. Or both!

 

I'm going to choose from column A. Mags had a BIG first yesterday. I'm not sure you'll be able to sense her excitement, but perhaps you could catch a glimpse. 

 





* * * * * * * * * *

Our esteemed Ketchup With Us Featured Writer 
from last time is ...
* * * * * * * * * * *  

* * * * * * * * * * *  
BEHIND THE KETCHUP 
Click here to read how this foolishness all began.  
KEEP TRACK OF OUR SILLINESS 
Facebook (Michele /Mel
Twitter (Michele/Mel)
Instagram (Michele/Mel)
Pinterest (Michele/Mel) 
SPREAD THE WORD

ketchup with us
<a href="http://www.accordingtomags.com" target="_self"><img src=&#34http://i1054.photobucket.com/albums/s492/accordingtomags/th_a410bb31.jpg" alt="Ketchup With Us" width="125" height="125" /></a>

FINALLY! THE LINK UP

WE give you a picture to inspire you to KetchupWithUs.

YOU link up something Fabulous!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE

Mags: "I can't wait 'til I can read super good. You know the first thing I'm gonna read?"
Me: "War and Peace?"
Mags: "No! Your blog about me and Tuck."
Me: "Just take into consideration my sleep deprivation in the beginning years."



Friday, August 8, 2014

YOU GOT ME

Me: "Mags, what are you doing snuggled up with Tuck? I told you he's sick, honey. Do you want to get sick, too?"
Mags: "I don't care if I get sick. He needs me."


Our kids have always been close. From the second Tuck met Mags on the outside of my belly, their bond was instant. He brought out her first coo. Her first smile. Her first belly laugh. Her first word. Her first steps. He is, by every stretch of the imagination, her rock.


And she is his. She brings out his strength to walk down a dark hallway. One word from her can send him into fits of laughter (or tears). Her smile puts him at ease when he's uncertain. In fact, Chris and I often joke that we pity any girl who breaks his heart first. The wrath of Mags will be fierce.


So, when my friends at Grace Hill Media shared the featurette from Gavin DeGraw, You Got Me, it spoke to me. Written for the heartwarming sequel, Dolphin Tale 2, it really connected to my own life. The lyrics are insightful and touching. Not only will this song be perfect for this future family classic, but I guarantee everyone has had times in their lives in which they can relate. 

When a song speaks to my heart, it captures my attention immediately. This song does just that. Want to hear it? Well, thanks to Grace Hill Media, I have the chance to share it with you! 

Take it in and enjoy! Let me know what you think in the comments.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

HIGHWAY TO THE DANGER ZONE

Me: "What was your favorite part of the lake vacation?"
Tuck: "My favorite part was how you let me tube all by myself. I know you were scared, but you let me do it. It was the best thing ever!"

I realized something on our vacation. I can't be the one to hold Tuck back. The potential is there out of pure maternal instinct to keep him safe and sound. But how will he learn? How will he find his own way if I'm constantly there steering him in the safer direction? I'm keeping him on the road MOST traveled. I know in some instances, this is a necessity. But there are those times where I have to step back, trust we've done our job, and let him decide.

So, as my "baby" climbed on that tube behind the boat and floated slowly away, the symbolism was not lost on me. The line attached to the boat was secure. But it stretched further out of my comfort zone than I would have liked.  I realized then that as Tuck gains years of experience, I have to be here to cheer him on and ADD to his courage to try new things. I have to be here to GUIDE him through his adventures, no matter how big or small. And if my comfort is compromised a little, well, so be it. We will all grow through this.


Most importantly, I want him to know I trust him in his choices. He's morphing into a young man right before every one's eyes; including mine. And when I forget and pull that rope in a little, I need to remember the elation on his face when I witnessed his self-confidence explode. I'm so proud of you, Tuck.

Here's to MANY more independent excursions!





Friday, August 1, 2014

KETCHUP WITH US(SIE)

It's time for Ketchup With Us. Hosted by Michele and me on the 1st & 15th each month. 


And we have a fun way for you to Ketchup With Us this week...or should I say...Ketchup With "Ussie." Have no idea what I'm talking about? Here, let me explain with an ever so helpful (and <cough> reliable) Urban Dictionary entry.



 

 

Basically, it's a "selfie" with more than one person. Chris has been taking ours due to my arms being half as long as his. I always end up getting me and then part of his eye and ear. Definitely not Christmas card picture worthy. He does a much better job. See? 



So, we want to see what YOU...and anybody else you'd like to include (or have take your ussie due to your short arms).  Take an ussie and post it for us. Then come over to Michele or my blog and link-up. It can be as creative or crazy as you want it to be. 

* * * * * * * * * *

Our esteemed Ketchup With Us Featured Writer 
from last time is ...
* * * * * * * * * * *  
* * * * * * * * * * *  





BEHIND THE KETCHUP 
Click here to read how this foolishness all began.  
KEEP TRACK OF OUR SILLINESS 
Facebook (Michele /Mel
Twitter (Michele/Mel)
Instagram (Michele/Mel)
Pinterest (Michele/Mel) 
SPREAD THE WORD
ketchup with us
<a href="http://www.accordingtomags.com" target="_self"><img src=&#34http://i1054.photobucket.com/albums/s492/accordingtomags




/th_a410bb31.jpg" alt="Ketchup With Us" width="125" height="125" /></a>

FINALLY! THE LINK-UP

We give you an USIE to inspire you to KetchupWithUs.

All you need to do is LINK UP YOUR OWN USIE!

And, for the love of the flapping motion needed to develop a Polaroid picture, TELL YOUR FRIENDS!

 


Thursday, July 31, 2014

SHADOWS OF THE PAST

Friend: "What are you guys doing this summer?"
Me: "We're going to spend a week at a lake house with Chris' friends."
Friend: "Oh, really. Fun! How many people?"
Me: *counting families on my hands* "Seven families."
Friend: "I'm sorry, I thought you said seven FAMILIES. You mean seven PEOPLE?"
Me: "Nope. I mean seven families."
Friend: "That sounds more like insanity and less like vacation."
 

Honestly, it's a trip we look forward to each year. One whole week where we can relax, be ourselves, have happy hour without the need of a designated driver or babysitter and just...breathe. 

The Lake trip with Chris' childhood friends. It never disappoints. We begin the countdown to the next year the second we pull away from the house. These are some of the finest men I have the privilege to know. And they married some very fun women to boot. There's a bond with these guys that is so unique and precious, I often find myself in awe when I watch them together. They share a lifetime (quite literally) of history. They've been there for each other's major (and minor) milestones, heartbreaks and accomplishments. 

And after fifteen years together, I forget that I wasn't ALWAYS a part of them. There are parts of me that they don't know...like my childhood. Today, in the early morning hours, when the rain was gently falling and the children weren't yet awake, a few of us were sipping our coffee together in the common room. The subject came up about what some of the wives were all like as children. And the three of us wives that were in the room shared a sneak peek into OUR childhoods. We laughed in hysterics, gasped in disbelief and listened with interest.

There we sat...adding to the memories. Letting in our own shadows of the past.