Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Entries from July 1, 2008 - August 1, 2008

Entries from July 1, 2008 - August 1, 2008


49 and Counting!

Happy Birthday to me!

Happy Birthday to me!

I'm approaching 50 and boy I am nifty.

Happy Birthday to meeeeee!!

31 Gray hair is a crown of splendor;
it is attained by a righteous life. Proverbs 16


Parenting Teenagers: Listening for the Loopholes

Parents of teens often comment (It should be noted that no matter how we phrase it or our tone, we parents of teens never complain. At the most we sound righteously indignant.) that our kids don’t listen. After parenting four teens, I have come to realize that it is not that they don’t listen to us. The truth is our kids listen on a deeper level than we realize. They are processing beyond our words to deeper realities. They are listening for the loopholes.

As a parent I say, “Please (we parents of teens always say please. If we don’t say it aloud, we are saying it in our hearts) darling child clean out the dishwashers so I can get the kitchen clean.” I then leave the kitchen to indulge my selfish self in vacuuming, dusting and laundry secure in the knowledge that I have been both fair in what I asked (I did not for example ask that she clean the kitchen (that would cause a discussion of how it is not her mess. A discussion I wisely avoid) and I was clear in what I desired her to accomplish. (Don’t you love a good run on sentence.)

Unfortunately I have once again have failed to realize my child would process what I have said at a deeper level. She found the loophole. I didn’t specify the time I wanted the dishwasher cleaned out. She reasons that without a specified time stated by the party of the first part (hereafter designated the mom), there is no specific action engendered on the party of the second part (hereafter designated the put upon daughter), therefore any righteous indignation by the mom expressed to the put upon daughter is both unreasonable and uncalled for.

Several months ago in an act of insanity, my husband told my astounded 13 year old she no longer has a set bedtime on Friday nights. I guess he figured that since all the other teens were up what was one more. She has to be in her room by 11 pm but there is no longer a specified bedtime. He meant but did not state that he expected her to actually go to sleep sometime during the night. Enter the loophole. This one was so big that even I spotted it right away. The parent said you don’t have a set bedtime; the child processed that information, as I don’t have to go to sleep Friday night if I don’t want to.

The man was honestly righteously indignant when he awoke at 4:30 am this past week to use the bathroom and found our 13 year old was still awake in her room.

To all parents of teens: Anticipate the loophole.


CSA Adventure: Orange is the New Green

This week we received cantaloupe, eggplant, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, bell peppers, onions and basil. When I was growing up the only orange produce I can recall was oranges. And yams. Evidently orange is the new green in the vegetable world.

Last week we received some orange (along with red and yellow) peppers. Some of the tomatoes we have received have been orange instead of the usual red. There was even one bright yellow on this week. The yellow tomato had almost no seeds compared to the red ones. I don’t know if that is because of the type of tomato it was that just happened to be yellow or if yellow tomatoes in general are seedless.

We received a watermelon last week that looked like a regular melon until I sliced it open. You guessed it….instead of the ruby red, watermelon aficionados are accustomed to the melon was a glowing orange color. Again, I don’t know if color effects perception but this melon seemed sweeter that the red fleshed ones.

Colorful vegetables make for inviting summer meals. The pale green of the cucumber salad, the bright yellow of the sliced tomato and the orange, greens and reds of the peppers stirred fried with a few white onions made for a meal that was a feast for our eyes as well as our taste buds. I don’t remember what type of meat I served with that meal but the riot of color from the vegetables is still imprinted on my mind days later.

Color may or may not effect perception of how vegetables tastes. One thing I have noticed since we have started our CSA adventure, everyone is at least trying the vegetable dishes I am making and we no longer have any leftovers after our meals.

I am tickled pink by this.


Parenting Semi-Adults: The Talk

If you think The Talk is going to be about sex, remember that by definition a semi-adult is at least 18 years of age. If by age18 you are not having an on going rapport with your child about all aspects of sexuality, either you are raising your family in one of the subcultures of American society in which sex and sexuality belong in marriage and you don’t need that rapport yet or you are a fool.

The topic for The Talk we are having with our semi-adult child who resides in our home is: How do adults live together under one roof. To be accurate its Talks, not Talk. Her father and I have been living together under one roof for 25 years. It took awhile for us to figure how to live happily together. Occasionally we still hit a bump (when he removed the 13 year olds Friday night bedtime without a word to me was a recent minor bump). It is to be expected that it will take awhile for her also. The trouble is while she is learning how to live like an adult with other adults, we have to endure the process.

Take money. This is a very hard concept for out semi-adult to grasp; the Bank of MOM is closed. We expect that if we loan you money you will pay us back…first. Before you buy new clothes, before you go to the movies. We are very glad you tithe, but you still need to pay us back. It should be noted that when I borrow money from you, I always pay you back usually before you have to come hunting for your money.

Take caring for shared spaces: The counter fairy (a relative of the tooth fairy, takes dishes off counters instead of teeth from under pillows) has retired. You use the kitchen to make chocolate chip cookies at 3 am; you clean it up and make sure you leave some cookies for mom and dad to try. I do not complain about having no sugar, flour or chocolate chips because I know how to live with other adults and I like cookies.

Take respecting others schedule: I do the family’s wash on Monday and Tuesdays. My house, my schedule, on this one, my way. We have four people getting out of the house in the morning and one shower: you cannot decide to change your shower time without consulting anyone else and you don’t get to wake me up if dad has cut into your shower time by less than 7 minutes. Living with other adults is not always fair.

Take “borrowing” others possessions: Adults do not take items from other people’s bedrooms without permission. You don’t borrow your sister’s shirt or my socks without asking. Yes, she does that to you but again note, neither your father nor I ”borrow” from you or your siblings without asking first. The exception: Flip-flops left next to the shoebox instead of instead of in it can be borrowed at will.

The Talks generally go well. Occasionally we get rolled eyes (you can’t tell another adult not to roll her eyes at you), huffy behavior or tears. The message usually doesn’t sink in the first time. There is still a bit of teen selfishness and listening for loopholes in our semi-adult. There is still a bit of I’m the parent, do it my way in how we communicate with our resident semi-adult.

We are all learning.


The Internet Can Be a Creepy Place

I wrote a post asking for suggestion for mother/daughter movies. Off the top of my head, I dashed off a second post and titled it Mother/Son movies. Do you have any idea where I am going with this? I sure didn’t.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is not my strong suit. The basic idea is to use words called key words, which people commonly plug into search engines, like Google, to find information on the web. You choose the right words and your blog pops to the top of the search engine’s listings. Easy in concept, not so easy in execution.

I was thrill to see all the queries I was receiving for the mother/son movie posting. From all over the world. How cool is that! Yes, I now realize I am too naïve to be allowed to wander the web on my own. My resident tech support person suggested I plug the key words back into Google and see what else pops up. Who the competition is in other words.

Plugged in the phase, and up popped…..oh my gosh! Mother/Son movies have very different connotations to some very sick people in the world. My husband called it global depravity.

You people should be ashamed of yourselves….you know who you are!

Sometimes you just have to weep for the sin of the world.

Another posting gets a significant (for my little blog) number of queries. Nowhere near the queries of shameful people with shameful hearts but enough to bring a smile.

It is the one I wrote on wedding vows .

Any other naive bloggers with a story to tell? Please, I can’t be the only one this formerly innocent.

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