— 1 —
A childhood friend posted a link to this painting on my Facebook Timeline the other day, saying that it reminded her of a young me:
Certainly, I’m very flattered by the comparison. (Thanks, Sarah!) Especially after that whole weight insecurity thing. But it also gave me a little laugh, because it reminded me of an exchange I had my freshman year of college with a classmate whom I didn’t know well at the time. It went something like this:
Her: (From halfway across a public space at the college, with a few other people milling around) “You know, Julie, you look like an old painting.”
Her: “I mean, in a good way – you know, the old Flemish masters and stuff.”
Me: “Oh, thanks. That’s… that’s very nice of you.”
Me: (Internally) “I’m 18 years old and I was just compared to an old painting. Not exactly what I was going for. But… those paintings are really very beautiful… I’ll take it.”
— 2 —
Can you believe that it’s mid-August and my boys and I were all wearing long pants and long-sleeved shirts to the park the other evening? And we were comfortable? Crazy stuff. It should be, like 100 degrees and oppressively muggy right now. But instead we’ve got this gloriousness:
Clear and cool (I don’t know, maybe it was in the low ‘70’s while we were out?), with this lovely low-humidity thing going on. I know that plenty of you want some more beach/pool weather before the summer’s out, but I’m really enjoying this little October preview. I mean, we got to go to the park without being terrorized by mosquitos! In August!
— 3 —
Yesterday my friends Betsy and Kristina came over for a little playdate and we sang to our four little boys who celebrate summer(ish) birthdays. Between the three of us we have two boys who just turned three, two who just (about) turned two… and then two more who will turn one in about six months’ time. Isn’t fun to have little ones who pair off like that? And aren’t they just so darned cute?
— 4 —
One of my Facebook friends, a Lutheran minister with whom I’ve been friends since we were children, posted the following the other day:
Tonight I am supremely grateful for the gift of reconciliation, and for the transformative power of forgiveness.
I don’t know her post’s context (and I hope she won’t mind me stealing it!), but I think it bears remembering. How often do we really think about reconciliation and forgiveness? Perhaps we Catholics think of it in the context of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, but do we think of it when it comes to our relationships with the people in our lives? Do we think of it in a broader sense, insofar as it relates to our differences and difficulties with people of other communities, faiths, nations, etc.?
— 5 —
Speaking of differences and difficulties, can we just stop for a moment and say a prayer for the people of Egypt? And perhaps another one for the Egyptians who have been targeted for their Coptic Christian faith? More than 600 people were killed on Wednesday, thousands were injured, important Coptic churches were destroyed… Such sadness, such heartache, such a waste. Let’s not let it go by unacknowledged.
— 6 —
Two of my dearest friends are on the cusp of welcoming their second little boy into their families. (And coincidentally, they have both chosen the same first name for their sons – which I won’t write here, because I can’t remember whether they’ve announced it publicly!) My best friend Catey is due to have her baby boy this weekend or the beginning of next week. My friend Diana will leave this weekend with her family to fly to South Korea to adopt their newest little guy. It’s been interesting to talk with them both over the many months they have been awaiting their sons’ arrival, noting the similarities between pregnancy and the adoption process.
There is, of course, the eagerness to become pregnant or to be matched with a child in the first place. There is anxiety over whether the pregnancy will last and be healthy, whether the adoption will proceed successfully. Sometimes there are setbacks; there are nearly always discomforts. But there is also an abiding love for the child in question and an eagerness to take him into your arms, your home, your life. As you near the end of your wait, fear creeps in: Will all go according to plan? Will this child really arrive safely? Will we be able to bring him home? How will we all (perhaps especially our older child) adjust to having a new member of the family? How will our new child adjust to us?
Here’s to both of you, Catey and Diana. Here’s an anticipatory little “Congratulations!” Here’s a pat on the back for a job very well done, a big hug, a wish of good luck, and many prayers. You are both fabulous mothers to your darling little guys and you’ll be fabulous mothers to their very lucky little brothers too. I send gobs of love to you and your families.
— 7 —
As I do so many weeks, I’m going to wrap up with some humor courtesy of my three-year-old:
(Pointing at his little brother) “Dat’s my chicken. He’s a superhero wit me.”
After I realized that he’d just leapt from the coffee table onto the bare hardwood floor, some five feet away:
Me: “WHAT are you DOING?!? You are not allowed on the table! You are not allowed to jump off it!”
Him: “But I want to fwy yike a bird!”
Me: “You are NOT a bird, you are a HUMAN! You cannot fly!”
Him: “I just pwetendin’ be a bird. I pwetendin’ be a woodpepper.”
“I’m a farmer who takes care of cows! And bunnies, too. And twees in da forest.”
Him: “I’m not a big kid! I’m a gwown-up!”
Me: “You’re not a grown-up until you’re, like, twenty. You are only three.”
Him: “I NOT free!”
Me: “Well then, how old are you?”
“I’m makin’ sure I’m healfy and safe!”
After I walked into the family room in response to his little brother’s screams: “I’d better go in time out.”
Now go see Jen and the rest of the Quick Takes Crew!