Monthly Archives: June 2007

June Group Writing Project Day Five

We’re getting near the end of the June Group Writing Project. Today we have four more great entries, bringing the total to 36. Very awesome!

Once again, thanks to everyone who’s participated, and don’t forget to submit your entries before tomorrow’s deadline!


Today, I’ll take my cue from several of our entries thus far and come up with three things I want Hayden to know about me:

  1. I love God. And I try to live my life to show Him that.
  2. I love my family: my son, my husband, my parents, my sisters, my in-laws and all my extended family. Whenever they’re far from me, I miss them. (And yes, that includes you, Hayden!)
  3. I love learning. To be honest, I really loved school. I do want to go back, even if I haven’t definitively decided what to study (I’ve got more than a decade to do that!). Along with learning, I love teaching. I actually don’t mind public speaking if it’s in anyway instructive. (Which is why I didn’t really mind when Ryan volunteered me to speak in church last month.)

Don’t forget to submit your entries—tomorrow is the last day for submissions!

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Why fulfillment?

Why is MamaBlogga all about mom’s search for meaning, finding fulfillment in motherhood? There are lots of other ways to find fulfillment; can’t those tide a mother over until she’s done raising her kids and can get on with her life?

I suppose so. But I think that a “let me just get through this and then get on with my life” is a recipe for resentment. I should know—about every other week, I change my plans for the time when my all my kids will be in school, hopefully in about a decade. I’ll go get a PhD, I’ll speak at conferences, I’ll write a book—someday, someday, someday.

It’s a bit like living our lives according to a strict religious code, thinking, “If I can just do this incredibly hard, arduous task now, I’ll be happy in Heaven forever.” Yes, you will—but I believe that God wants us to be happy now, and His commandments are given to us to help us be happier.  (After all,  don’t you think we’ll be living those same commandments in Heaven?  Will we magically be happy doing something there that we resented doing here?)

Whether or not you believe as I do, you probably have (or want) children right now. I want every mother to be able to feel fulfillment and pride as a mother—now, not just in fifteen or twenty years when her children are grown, when they’re “accomplishments.”

We’re often told that this is impossible. The Harvard Business School’s model of success used to be: “Achievement.” We’re told that in motherhood, there are no achievements. There’s nothing you can put on a resume, get a bonus for or show off to your friends. (Okay, well, there’s potty training.)

If you are feeling this way, I want you to know that those people are wrong. Many of the things that count as “achievements” in this life—landing a contract, winning a case, even truly good and important things—will fade in significance more quickly than we expect. The Harvard Business School revised its model of success to include happiness, significance and legacy. Many will tell you that motherhood doesn’t provide these either. They are wrong.

There is nothing more significant you can do than to instill values into your children’s hearts. I know you want to do this—most of this month’s Group Writing Project entries have directly addressed or alluded to some kind of values, whether it be courtesy, family, self-worth or religious beliefs.

I won’t lie to you: it’s not easy. But it is worth it. One day, I hope and pray, I will see the people my children have become. I will be matriarch over a clan of children, children-in-law, grandchildren (and hopefully sisters, brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews and their posterity, if we live close enough). And even when our dozens of friends and family come all together, say, for my child’s wedding, I will only see a small portion of the good works our family will have wrought. That is significance, happiness and legacy.

But that’s “Heaven” (on Earth). While I look forward to that day, I don’t just have to live for that day, and neither do you.

Enjoy today. Be fulfilled today. One of the first things you have to do to be fulfilled is to recognize that what you do is significant.  Yes, even keeping the toddler out of the cat food.

Mothers matter.  Don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise.  Mothers matter and you matter.

What else can I do to help you feel fulfilled?

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June Group Writing Project Day Four

Once again, we have some amazing entries in our June Group Writing Project! Today we have nine more entries, bringing our total to 32 entries. I’m way excited about the number of entries—but more excited about the caliber of all the entries!

So, once again, read comment and don’t forget to submit your entries!


Today, three things I want Hayden to remember so far in his life:

  1. Marty. His beloved monkey. It’s no coincidence, I think, that a monkey’s screeches are the first animal sound he learned to imitate.
  2. His songs. We sing “Baby Beluga” before every nap and bedtime, but I also want him to remember three special songs that we sing from time to time: “Today,” (sung by my mother to my sisters and me, and by my sisters at my wedding), “Bike Rider” (all five verses, plus any that we make up in the future) and “My Boy is Handsome” (the last two were written by Ryan and me especially for Hayden).
  3. Giggles! Today I was working and I heard Hayden laughing uproariously. He doesn’t laugh like that unless someone’s tickling him or being very silly, so it was weird to hear him laugh like that while playing by himself. (It was the cat.) He was in a strange mood most of the day—grumpy, but very prone to hysterical giggles. He especially liked being chased and being my “puppet” to “play” the drums.
      Don’t forget to submit your entry; the deadline is Saturday!
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The undead mold….

Okay, okay, I’m not jumping on the bandwagon, but this is the first post of my product reviews category. Don’t worry, I’ll keep them out of my feed and off my front page (unless you ask otherwise), other than the occasional really cool post. This is one of those.


This is a little bit hard to admit, since I really don’t want you all thinking that I’m the dirtiest person ever. It’s a long story (in fact, it started about the same time I started to blog), but the basic plot is that our old fridge slowly died. Who knew it would take two weeks to get a new one? Luckily, we had a minifridge from Ryan’s apartment days (and a kind neighbor with a deep freezer).The minifridge was our only fridge for almost a month. And it was good to us, but once our new fridge arrived, we were not good to the minifridge. We transferred our food out of it and then just left the dirty minifridge to rot.And rot it did. After 10 months, you can’t imagine what it smelled like. I’ll show you what it looked like, but please don’t think less of me!

scary mold

So, there’s this Bounty One Sheet Challenge Contest, and I figured, hey, I’d like a $30,000 kitchen (even if it would make it hard to move away)—that’s the grand prize for 100-word “Challenge” stories entered before Saturday. So I gave it a shot.

Unfortunately, it took more than one paper towel to eradicate the quarter-inch-tall mold formations in my minifridge. Go look at that picture again: they’re in the crevices in the wall—they’re on the door shelves and seal, too. However, one paper towel did clean the walls, the wall crevices, the door, the door shelves, the rack shelf, the tiny freezer, the lid to the bin on the bottom (the dirtiest part) and most of the shelf behind it before it was just too wet and dirty to do any more good. It also held up incredibly—although it was soaking wet and really, really disgusting (did I mention this mold is probably deadly?), it probably could have finished the job.

I ended up using another paper towel, though, to clean off the bottom shelf and in and around the bin. On, and the door seals. Yeah, there was even mold there. Blech.

all clean!

Let’s hope this makes little fridgie go to work with Ryan one of these days like we’ve been planning for the last two years.

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