Tag Archives: Life

Taking Out The Trash Turns Into …..

You will think this is about to be a humorous post. One focusing on how Rob and I take out the trash much more often than we used to. Our six “take-out-the-trashers” have whittled down to one. Mom and Dad often pitch in.

It was my turn. I took out the trash. And on my way down the driveway, with my iPhone flashlight showing me the way in the dark, I became perfectly still.

I couldn’t have walked if I wanted to. My life was there. I was taking out the trash and my heart erupted in joy. Why?

I believe it was because our beautiful home was shining right behind me. Our home that has protected those six children was right there in shadow yet more bright than ever.

Tonight, I took out the trash and brought my life into clear view.

There is No Life Without My Dad.

Recently dear friends Dads passed away and each asked if they would ever get over it.  Today, on Father’s Day I share my answer;

Dad holds Luke in March 1996. Casey in Background.
Dad holds Luke in March 1996. Casey in Background.

You will never have a life without your Dad. He is right around the corner. He is in every breath your child blows upon your cheek at night as they close their eyes to sleep. Your Dad is holding your hand right now. Can you feel it?

See that rainbow just behind the cloud? Know that nagging feeling when you know you shouldn’t be doing something – yep that’s him too. Dad is giving you his two cents and then some. Dad is laughing when you swear because your car won’t start. Dad is howling when you slip and fall and look to see if no one is watching.

Dad is reaching for your hair right now. He’s brushing it back from your face. Hey see that grin your kids get right when they do something naughty? Yep – he’s right behind it. Feel your heart burst with pride as they grab their diploma, marry their sweetheart, he is the fireworks inside.

Look in your your husband’s eyes – the man you married and know how the same eyes shine with pride and love right through to you. My God you will miss his physical presence. Not a day will go by that you won’t want to hear that laugh or “dad tone” and yet deep inside, with each success you have in your life, and each tiny misstep you just know he is there. Holding. Reaching. Caring. Loving. Just being the Dad that is yours alone.

It’s been 18 years since my Dad died on a beautiful August day. Will I ever get on with my life without my Dad? My Dad is always with me. Here is is in living color:   Robert J. Jarman

 

Full Screen Life

I just read a blog focusing on the fact that there is no such thing as a “balanced” work / home life.  The blogger went on to say that if you don’t like what you do- change. The remarks to the blogger were the most eye-opening for me.  They referred to the writer as “pompous” and “unrealistic” and focused on negativity in the workplace with no hope in sight.   I thought of the below post written in 2012.  The same holds true today – except we are now packing up our 5th of 6 kids to head to college (YEAH!)   It’s easy to become negative.  It’s easy to get into a rut at work or home and feel you are a hamster on a wheel.  It’s hard to pick up your spirits if they are down and look at the big picture.
A full screen view of Lake Michigan, Holland State Park
A full screen view of Lake Michigan, Holland State Park
Last night we went to Holland, Michigan to see Lake Michigan.  We shopped in town, relaxed at dinner, watched a sunset and ended the night with Ice Cream. It captured the meaning of a “Full Screen Life” as listed below.   Enjoy!

 

 September 2012:

I’ve been spending the morning preparing for a cleaning out of now college freshman Emily’s bedroom.

She did a great job packing and sorting.   The left behind is her childhood memories that will be stored away until she’s ready to re-open the fun in her own home someday.

 

My Sunday’s are often spent preparing.  I indulge myself with readings all morning  while I ponder the task list in front of me.  Today’s task that looms ahead is one that is exciting and yet melancholic at the same time.  Two of the articles I read hit home with me today as I prepare for the challenge:

 

The first is from http://zenhabits.net/ and it explains how we need to begin living a Full Screen Life.

 

In it author Leo Babauta explains how we often are doing two to three or four things at once:

 

“We’re doing one work task while trying to stay on top of email, text messages and social media. We’re talking with a friend while seeing what we’re missing on Facebook and Instagram. We’re eating while planning. Making love while thinking about work.”  Babauta shares his concept on living a “Full Screen Life” by focusing only on the one task you are doing.  If you are engaging in a discussion with your daughter – don’t think about work – truly engage in the moment with your daughter.   He showcases how to do this and encourages practice.

 

The second reading came from a review on Gretchen Rubin’s new book,  Happier at Home:  ”Kiss More, Jump More, Abandon a Project, Read Samuel Johnson and My Other Experiences in the Practice of Everyday Life.’   Rubin dedicated a school year to making her home a place of greater simplicity, comfort and love.  I would love this book as a Christmas Gift (Hint Hint) and in the meantime have reviewed the reviewer and know that Rubin is on to something.  (‘Happier at Home: Kiss More, Jump More, Abandon a Project, Read Samuel Johnson, and My Other Experiments in the Practice of Everyday Life’ by Gretchen Rubin http://mymindonbooks.com/?p=6142)

 

Perhaps it is because our home has gone from a loud and open door place where 6 kids introduced us to every form of friend and foe into a quieter more grown up house with two teenagers who rarely fight and revel in playing games with their ol’ Mom and Dad.  Perhaps it’s because I’m about to clean out a post-high school girl room and bring more space to what was once a very overcrowded home while celebrating another pretty successful push from the nest.  Either way the two readings that I came across today I believe did not show up by accident.

 

The funny thing is – when you are in the midst of the madness of raising kids and raising career goals is when you really need to live a Full Screen Happy Life.  Don’t get me wrong. I’m not in any way thinking my life was not full and happy –  I am saying there is comfort in intentional happiness and full attention at work and home.

 

I’m excited and humbled at this juncture in our lives.  My work is compelling, challenging and just plain fun.  My life is less stressed with school activities and more open to new learnings and opportunities.  I’m taking the two readings from today and combining them at work and home.  Get ready to practice with me…. let’s jump into a Full Screen Happy Life!

 

Tip #1 for Full Screen Happy Life:    Cards, Dice and Game Boards belong on every table – both office and home – not hidden in closets or drawers!