The Fun Mom

  

I love kids and I love candy.  Maybe that’s why they called me the Fun Mom today.  I don’t think they have any idea that they made my day. 

We were waiting for some other kids to join the carpool ride home and I shared my cotton candy treats while we waited.  It was a looooonnnng wait today and I got to practice patience.  I have been practicing not getting mad at people when they do things that I think are wrong. I am trying to not place my expectations on them knowing that most people are good and just see different shades of our shared reality.  

Our friend finally arrived after 30 minutes and I didn’t lose it! I was actually proud of myself for staying calm and enjoying the kids that were in the car with me, waiting together.  I actually love driving the carpool and being with all the cool kids, listening to their stories. Thank goodness they aren’t driving yet!  

We decided to go get frozen yogurts because it was hot in the car and every one had time to hang out a little longer.  Some of my favorite memories from being a kid included the times my friend’s Aunt would take us to 7-11 after school and we could pick whatever we wanted. I loved shaking up our routine and being spoiled and treated to something sweet and fun.  

I think the kids had fun and loved being spoiled today. Hopefully it’ll be a memory they will cherish too one day.

Meeting People Where They Are At

I learned this lesson today at Charlie’s drum lesson and final recital.

IMG_1830.JPG

There was this super annoying, smart, loquacious child who kept interrupting the lessons every week to ask questions, give commentary and issue commands. Literally. He used this word, command.

The teacher asked if the class had any questions before they began and he replied that he didn’t have any questions, but he did have a command. What? Who says that? And the teacher calmly replied with a question, “You have a command?”  And the boy, proceeded with his command:  “Yes. I have a command that you play the electric guitar a little bit more quietly because it’s too loud.”  He wasn’t trying to be bossy. He just wanted control of his environment and was uncomfortable with the loudness of the guitar playing without the accompaniment of the drum banging little angels.

I thought I was coming to observe and enjoy Charlie’s last drum lesson today. I wasn’t planning on learning a life lesson by watching the instructor react to this student. This teacher never showed any negative emotion to the constant questioning and planning and interruptions that this little boy offered.  Instead, the instructor met him where he was at. He replied with kindness and explained why the guitar sounded louder than usual and reassured him that if after the drums joined in and he still felt it was too loud, that he would adjust the sound of the amplifier. He then showed by example how the two groups worked together and helped the boy to be comfortable.

When the boy was leading in and playing ahead, he gently explained that this might be confusing to the other players as to when to begin and that it actually confused him too. He explained how the boys behavior affected the group and never passed judgement. When the boy would ask to ad-lib, he would gently tell him that eventually that might be a good idea, but for now they were probably good working on the standard piece and that one day they would learn that skill.

When the kid started talking and thinking about other things they should try, the teacher just gently reminded him that they were there to drum and that he could think a little less right now and just drum. The kid always responded in a positive way and did what was expected of him. There wasn’t ever a power struggle. This instructor was amazing and patient and loving and kind and talented.

Tonight I was thankful that he chose to teach in so many ways and I’m going to miss drum lessons!

Finding Joy – Version 2 or 3

20131202-222829.jpg

I find joy everywhere, even when I’m mad, although anger slows me down from finding peace. Duh, right? I try to move past what ever frustrates me as quickly as possible because I’d rather be open to the next BIG (little) thing that comes my way and enjoy the moment versus missing it because I’m too uptight about what ever thing didn’t quite go the way I wanted it to.

Managing expectations. Accepting what is. Letting go. And flowing… ah, I can feel the joy returning! 😉

Not that I was mad, but there was a moment or two today that didn’t quite go as planned. But guess what? I’ve learned the faster I can let go, the faster I can accept my reality, and be ok and joyful again. And the thing that was maddening today was a mixed up scheduling appointment that threw me off. No big deal, really, but frustrating anyway. I’ve got to work on being less rigid!!  Phew… now that we got that out, I can share a couple joyful moments from today.

The sky was beautiful tonight and the light show spectacular! I tried to take a picture, but the phone lines and wires got in the way and my phone camera didn’t really do the artist justice. But it put me in a really good mood. I was on my way to pick up Juliana from her practice and I was admiring the fall colors all the way home. There are these gorgeous yellow ginkgo trees – I think that’s what they are called and they are the brightest yellow ever. Their leaves are starting to fall and are covering the ground in this beautiful blanket of yellow.

I have one favorite tree in a nearby park that I admire every year and watch it change from green to yellow to naked. We drove by on our way home to admire her beauty and to take some pictures and create some fun. The best part was that when I mentioned my favorite tree, Juliana knew exactly which one I was talking about. We got out to walk in the canopy of leaves and Juliana decided to climb up.

20131202-223537.jpg

The sun had already set, so the lighting was a bit darker than I would have liked, but we had fun nevertheless. And as we began to enjoy the tree, a friend walked by with her dog and mentioned how much she loved that tree too. She offered to take our picture for us. I love this little community I live in and feel so happy being back home again. There is a comfort that comes from belonging to a place where people know your name. Thanks, Suszi! You made my day.

20131202-223639.jpg

Where do you find joy? Do you find joy everyday? I’m curious.

(p.s. – this blog was written last night, but somehow didn’t get published and when I published what I thought was my final draft, it was actually an older draft. Hmm… I guess there was a mixup in space as I was writing from two platforms at the same time. I’m still learning… hope you enjoyed Finding Joy – version 2, which was really version 3!)