Wednesday, November 28, 2007

...all that grey matter

You know what I'm talking about - the stuff that is not black and white. :) J/K! I've been thinking a lot about how difficult it is to be a Christian sometimes. There are those things that the Bible explicitly tells us to do: spread the Word, love others, get to know Christ as the number one thing, etc. There are also the things that the Bible explicitly tells us NOT to do: kill, lie, covet, be jealous, etc.. Then there is everything in between: what I call, the grey stuff. And, sheesh, there is a whole lot of it. When I became a parent, there is even more of it I have to deal with because, I guess, there are more parties involved. Sometimes, talking about that stuff makes me a bit tense, and I have to go back to what God has taught me about them.

[For those that care to know what some of those 'grey matter' can be in my life:
-Homeschool vs Public School
-Whether or not to use Birth Control
-How to discipline kids (ie spanking or not)
-How to raise kids (ie attachment parenting, etc)
-Staying at home or work
and blah, blah, blah....they carry so much emotion for me as I think or talk about them, so I know that making decisions about these things mean a lot to me. ]

So, what have I learned? Honestly, for me, there is no one correct answer for everyone. Yes, I've read articles and had discussions on the biblical basis for homeschooling or attachment parenting. But the thing is, it's a lot how you interpret scripture and how far you want to extrapolate the meaning. I really feel that the Bible remains 'grey' about these issues because there is no universal answer that applies to everyone. So, where does that leave me? It leaves me with the fact that God has given me certain personalities and traits that make me who I am and how I'm prone to handle things. So, that might skew me towards one way or the other or a mix of the 2 extremes. I do believe that God gave me those traits for a reason and that it's ok to go my own path, if I choose. I'm also left with the fact that God will tell me if he wants us to choose a certain path for our family, which reminds me that the prerequisite for hearing his voice is to stay close to Him. Still working on that. :) But at least I do tell Him that I value His opinion and want to please Him with what I do. :D And when He stays silent, I feel the ok to go with what I want. [At least that's what I got out of a certain Graham Cooke tape and man, that revelation was soo freeing for me!!]

The hard part for me is that I'm a people person [read: people pleaser] for the most part. I find myself oftentimes being very emphathetic towards others and then see how both sides could work for me. And that leaves me right back where I usually start, in the middle. ;) In the past, I also try to please others first, esp my parents, but now I realized I can (and should) please God and still honor others. The flip side is that I feel badly when I feel strongly about an issue because I feel like I can't see the opposing view at all and fear I will end up judging them. That is something I'm still working on. Life is to short to judge other or be mean, that's what I figure. Anyhow, I wanted to leave this post with something totally irrevelant but light-hearted and happy....

We had ordered something from Gap online a while ago and I had kinda forgotten about it. [Yeah, it's true, it wasn't something we NEEDED. ::sheepish::] Anyhow, I remembered to check on the shipment status today and saw that it was delivered on the 27th. But, wait, it's the 28th and I didn't get a pkg!? So, I investigate and found out that it was delivered to our old place in NEW JERSEY!!! Doh! What to do? I decided to call my old real estate agent to see if she can figure out a way for us to contact the new owner. After a very nice conversation, she assures me that she will go by the house [she lives very close to it] to leave a note for the owner to call her and will also call the owner's agent in the morning. A few hours later, I get a call from the agent and she said that she had the owner on the phone b/c he happened to be home when she knocked on his door. He kindly asked for our Florida address and told me that he would ship it there tomorrow, no problem, since he works for UPS anyways. And, get this, he wanted to pay for shipping!?!?!! That was such a blessing for me! He even went on to ask about the kids [he had come over a few times while checking out the house and had met the kiddies - Jana, esp., took a liking to him.]. Anyhow, it was just a reminder to me that there are still lots of nice people out there. I'm sure you knew that already but sometimes I forget. :) And re: shipping stuff, I had ordered a pair of shoes from around 10:30pm on Friday night and got a package Saturday morning at 9am?!?! I know they offer free overnight shipping but, man, do they not sleep? Haha! Anyways, I'm super impressed! Alrighty, storytime is over - I'm going to bed. G'night!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

...the stuff of life...

With a title like that, you know that this post will be random, don't you? :)

Kev will be finishing up his Spine Fellowship at the end of June 2008, so he's currently on a hunt for a new job. And, most likely, we'll be moving again. Yes, we are a member of the 'Frequent Movers Club'. :) But honestly, now that I look back on our almost 5 short years of marriage and having moved 4 times already, I wouldn't have it any other way. More on that later. The kiddies are doing well - Aidan is very much the helpful 3 y.o. lately, wanting to do almost everything himself. And, hey, I'm not stopping him! :D I am definitely there to supervise, however, making sure that his shirt is on the right way, that his underwear is all the way up before he attempts the pants and that only the garbage goes into the trash, not the bowl that was holding the goods. It's been more fun lately and I feel like he's so grown up. Gotta take hold of the years where they want to hang out with you, I'm saying to myself already! Jana is getting more verbal and active. She's very much the people person and loves to engage others, whether they want to engage with her or not! Ha! [She'll basically stare someone down until they look back at her....hehe. No, she did not get that from me. ;)] She's full of cute sayings (lots of Chinglish) and fun antics. She's also well-known for climbing up things we don't think she can climb and all the while being super quiet about it, so she can accomplish her task uninterrupted. Ahem. But thank goodness for the "Little Enforcer" in our house (AKA Big Bro Aidan), she's always discovered. The 2 kiddies are also starting to play better together - hallelujah! For me, I'm still meeting new moms all over the place and getting to know more people from church, which is so nice. God's also teaching me new things about my relationship with Him but more on at a later date. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and we have nothing planned at all. How did that happen? Our grand plan was to invite some international students over for a traditional American Thanksgiving meal but by the time I had located the correct coordinators for the local Friends of Internationals, it was too late and all the students had been matched up. A good problem, I suppose. :) Then we thought about running/jogging/walking the Turkey Trot with the kids but it was too late to register online and if you wanted to register the day of, you had to get there at an ungodly hour. Welp, both Kev and I wanted to sleep in, if possible, on his only day off, so we're just going to play it by ear tomorrow. Maybe a nice hike somewhere - it IS going to be in the low 80s tomorrow. [Mwwwaahaha to you Northerners!] So, we'll see what we end up doing.

This darn's so fun yet sucks so much of my time away. But recently, a whole slew of old highschool friends popped up on there and all of a sudden, I'm having a virtual HS reunion on facebook! And it's been so fun seeing what everyone's been up to, where they're located now and what they look like. :) I'll hafta admit that I keep expecting everyone to look the same as they did in HS b/c I definitely still do (NOT!). Haha! Anyhow, if only I could write programs, I would write a little program called "The Last 10 Years" so ppl can read about it on my profile (since that's all I've been writing about for the past week). :)

Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood
[Can this post get more random?] I've been on the hunt for cool kids' music lately b/c Wiggles and the like can get old really fast. I wanted something that I don't mind listening to and that can hopefully teach them something, too. Last night at the library, I found this CD that took Mr. Rogers' songs and remade them. Honestly, some of them were kinda cheesy (to me, at least) but there was a DVD about the people who were on this project and their thoughts on Mr. Rogers. Can I tell you, I was balling through most of this DVD. I've never watched his show consistently and when I would happen upon it sometimes, I would think it was kinda boring. But when I actually took the time to listen to the lyrics of his songs, they really touched me. The messages are the ones that we all needed to hear as kids - that you are liked b/c of you and not because of what you do (unconditional love), that it's ok to be mad or have negative feelings, etc. Plus, he is so genuine and so REAL - kids can always tell if you're trying to fake something. It's kinda uncanny but true. Anyhow, Kev tells me he watched half an hour of Mr. Rogers everyday when he grew up and he really like it. He said it made him feel loved, important and he got Mr. Rogers' full attention everyday for 30 minutes. Anyhow, thank you so much, Mr. Rogers - thanks for being so humble, loving and caring. I appreciate you. :)

Not By Accident
I'm a firm believer that nothing happens by accident. There is always a purpose behind it that we might just never find out about. Sometimes, it the midst of something bad happening, I catch myself saying, "This is really awful, why is this happening?" but then afterwards realize the greater purpose. [I think back on the countless stories of ppl missing their morning train into the city due to some traffic on 9/11 and being mad about it, only to find out this caused them to miss being in the WTC when the planes hit.] Though sometimes I never find out. And I guess at those moments I just choose to be positive because living on the other side, which I have before, really stinks. Being negative really sucks the energy out of you and it's just no fun to live that way. Anyhow, since we've moved a lot, I've always felt a twinge of sadness that we'd had to leave friends and/or family behind. But you know, if we didn't leave, we would never have met all these other wonderful friends that we now have in IL, NY, DE or FL. And we would never have the oppportunities that we did have. Therefore, we're so thankful for the friends that we have over the long haul and those we have for a season. :)

Anyhow, I always have so much stuff in my head to blog about but this post has been random enough. So, have a great Thanksgiving 2007!