Thursday, May 27, 2010

THINKIN' THURSDAY - The strange & awesomeness of someone else's influence

My boys are grounded for a week.

They were easily influenced by some neighbor boys.

Rode their bikes out into the street - cuz everyone else was doing it.

We have a rule here.

"No riding your bikes in the street."
Unless we're all going on a bike ride together.

It's never been an issue before.

Before Tuesday, that is.

For years the rule has been enforced and obeyed.

A new kid appears and now the rule doesn't exist.

(I think their brains temporarily fall out of their bodies and all reason/decision/Mom's hollers go flopping onto the ground)

So while they're being grounded I've been pondering,

"the influence of others"

I'm not separate and apart from that.

I hate to admit.

I used to be "my own person", had "my own way of doing things".

Now well into my 40's I realize that was young stubbornness - a metamorphosis of who I was trying to become.


I haven't a clue.

I change minute to minute.

It's weird.

I like being a regular "my own thinking" kinda gal.

I like folks saying, "Oh that's Kolein...she likes to be different."


One day or daily or moment to moment I started following people.

You know what happened?

I actually got lost.

I followed people.  And now I'm lost.  My soul isn't lost.  My self is.

Was I so busy being a mom, a wife, a friend - defining myself by others and my service that ME isn't in the equation any longer?

Is this right?

It doesn't feel right.

I feel lonely.

Where am I?

We were invited last night to go to our friends' house (out in the country) to eat, play music, sing.  It was glorious.

A perfect night of friendship and fun.  Our two boys played with their four girls and one son on their sweet mini farm.  That's right! Rabbits, chickens, roosters, electrical fences, barns, farm house, a well, bathtub fire pit, roll up your overalls, watch where you step FARM.

I romanticize parts of people's lives.  It keeps me happy.  

I don't want to live on a farm.  Not that there is one single thing wrong with living on a farm.  No not one thing.  

It's just not me.

I don't wear overalls for one thing.

My boys want a farm now.

That's right! Rabbits, chickens, roosters, electrical fences, barns, farm house, a well, bathtub fire pit, roll up your overalls, watch where you step FARM!

When does it matter what I want?

I'm not crying or kicking or slamming any cupboards girls.  Trust me.

Just wondering. In all of this running around and being influenced by everyone and losing my way, I cannot remember who I am.

I start to think I am one person and then I read something or hear something and I think I'm different.  Then I realize, "wait, that's not me." And then go back and try to remember who I am.

Can we forget who we are?

Is it bad?


Can it be changed or calmly altered enough to express ourselves?

And another thing, I don't recognize myself in the mirror anymore.

Has any of this happened to you?

Thinkin' Thursday.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010




Craigs List

Became our "wine sofa"

No really.  In case my husband spilled his wine on it.

That's why the sofa was purchased in the first place.

Ugly cover on it go with the wine.


No really.

Ugly chair.

Came with my husband.  He's not ugly.  He loves the chair.

I tried to change her UP a bit.

"the rocking mechanisms are the highest quality and it's an import...yadayadayada"... all the live long day. I was a hormonal inferno on this one at the baby store...first baby...loved my life and my growing belly...I actually allowed my dear dear sweet of a man husband to talk me into this one.  AND IT CAME WITH A ROCKING OTTOMAN!!!!!!!!  That was 10 years ago.  Seriously, the rocking mechanism is to die for... I still fall asleep in .3 seconds in that chair.  I have an off white bohemian coverlet over this one all the live long day now...HELP!!!!!!
Playing over at PINK AND POLKA DOTS'  Ugly Sofa Contest today!

Won't you join us for a really good time and I'm pretty sure A TON OF LAUGHS!!

Grass/sticky white bread does not make for a Monday Makeover

A little blade of grass

can alter a day

The whole entire day

....well, at least a few hours

These were the crucial hours to finishing my 6yo's room


posting about it

'cuz I was inspired...

so inspired


I'm a mom.  First.

cough...gag...cough....all morning, running in and out of his room where I was between doing his math and english....cough..gag..."mom, my hurts...there's something stuck...."

"Oh, you've had a cold. It's probably just a sore throat.  Go finish your school work." (as I try to figure out how to hang a very large roman shade on his window and put holes in the freshly painted you read that right walls.  Oh how I just want to stand and stare at those walls and not put one single screw or nail into them)

Cough. GAG!

"Mooooooooawm! There's something stuuuuck!"

"Open your mouth."

"I don't see anything. Go get a flash light. And a tongue depressor."

"A what?"

"Popsicle stick.  A popsicle stick from your arts and crafts."

"Open wide and say, AHHHH!"


(that's what I thought)

What I said was,

"Yep, there's some thing there. I don't know what it is."

"It's grass."

"Grass?  Were you eating grass?"

"uh huh."

"Why were you eating grass?"

"Violet told me to."

(Violet is the absolute cutest, sweetest, pick-her-up-and-eat-her-in-one-bite after you smother her with smacking kisses, four year old who lives next door and plays with our boys everyday and rings the door bell or comes inside when their not home because she misses them)

"Violet told you to eat grass?"


There's this sweet spot between our yards where the kids play.  We have seven or so (never counted them) tall cherry trees all in a row along the side of our front yard.  Violet and Asher, her 6 yo big brother, come over and all four children play by these trees.  It's the nicest little shaded spot for them.  They collect frogs there.  Build things.  Talk.  Giggle.  And apparently eat grass.

So off to the pediatrician's office we go.

It's lodged in his glotus.

"So", he says, "I hear you've been grazing, Sean."

The doc takes a look.

Grabs some tools.  Has my son hang his head upside down off the examining table.  On the second attempt he carefully pulls out a 3-4 inch blade of grass with the roots still attached.

High fives!!!  Jubilance!!!!

In the car ride home I got the full story.

"Mom, it was white bread."

"White bread?"

"Violet gave me a piece of white bread and there was some grass on it and it got stuck in my throat."

Sticky white bread, hmm.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wednesday became whimsical, girls!!!

So, I'm standing outside on my patio talking with the person who I am about to show my house to... 

(we're selling it someday)

...and the postal carrier person walks up my front lawn and hands my oldest son this enormous box.

"It's from Grandpa!!!", they shout whilst jumping up and down.

I look at the return address.


"Who then?"

"I don't know."

"Open it!!!"

"Nope. Not now."

Can I just say here among friends that tiny file folders are now "my one weakness?!"
I screeched out loud, scared the bajeebers out of EC, when I opened the most, and I mean, MOST, lovely box I have ever seen in the whole of my life.  (I like writing like I live in 19th century England).
I had forgotten.  Well, like completely right-out-of-my-mind forgotten about this wonderful and thrilling little adventure Gina at The Shabby Chic Cottage was having a month ago.  A swap.

But you see I was retired from this gig (or something like that...nasty rumors...Donna!) and had 64 other things going on and so I forgot to do my part.  But dear, dear, sweet Leanne, from OrganizeYourStuffNow, did not.  Don't you love it when others don't forget and you do and you get the big lovely box in the mail so you can then get all excited about blogging again and connecting with girlfriends and go 'round your house making up a box of goodies from your heart and soul creative spot?  Yeah, me too!
Numbers!!!!!!!!!!  Ever since I read and saw the "number high" that Donna is on over at FJI, I got high, too. I never did get high on numbers before.  Actually, I never noticed numbers.  Now, I'm so into numbers.  The influence you all have on me could be quite troublesome if I think about it too long.  So I won't.

Little frames, miniature clothes pins *swoon*, sticky letters, tiny papers, shells, buttons, ribbons, ornate pin thingys, mossy things, the box.....

And my favorite journal book EVER because the sweetest birdie lays on its cover - reminds me of Denise's darling birds from LIVING LIFE CREATIVELY.

I melted all over the floor when I saw it.

Leanne, you made my day!  The whole day!  All 24 hours of it!  I'm including the ones still ahead because I'm so over-the-top happy about this gift that the joy will undoubtedly spill into the wee hours of the morning as I sleep and dream about what I will do with these precious treasures.  I think just looking at them sitting on the kitchen table will be perfect.  For now.

With my whole heart, thank you!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

For God So Loved the World

 What do you say to a man who, on this Mother's Day, has suffered and endured the loss of not one, but two mothers?

Before he could speak,

before he could crawl,

he would be given away.

Before he had any say in anything,

a choice was made to pass him along to someone else.

How this must break a heart.

As I look at my sons today I cannot help but think about this time in the life of a young girl, who herself, was unable to decide her future.  Frightened most likely.  Pregnant in 1946 at the age of 15, I would have been petrified.  Back then a girl was shunned, sent away.

We don't know what happened to her.

We only have the next bit of the story.

At six months old, my husband was adopted.

It was 1947.

A couple who were unable to have children signed a paper and now this baby boy would become Eric.

The girl that lay in the hospital bed named him, Johnny.

When I look at him some times I think, "Johnny."

Both our sons bear his name.  His birth name.

I ache thinking about this loss.


And hers.

I know a woman who gave her son up for adoption. She has shared with me her sorrow and loss. She wonders if he thinks about her.

How can he not?

She is his mother.

What does she look like?

What are her favorite things?

What would it be like to hold her hand?

Kiss her cheek?

Smile into her eyes?

Take her to dinner?

What would it be like to hear her voice?

And what would it be for her to see him?

To hear his voice?

To hold him in her arms?

How her heart must ache.

And how his heart aches.

Perhaps there are brothers and sisters.  A whole entire family out there wondering where Johnny is.  Wondering with their hearts.


Perhaps the burden is too great to share.  Perhaps Betsey carries the burden all by herself.

In December my husband lost the only mother he ever knew.  It was a long arduous road of illness.  He is an only child.  The burden was on his shoulders.

I have tried in vain to find Betsey.

To no avail.

His life with his adoptive mother was hard.  I don't know why.  Sometimes we end up with mothers who are scared and cannot give without that fear attached.  Perhaps afraid to love. Nevertheless, we all love the best we know how.

We do the best we can.  In the moment.  In our plans for our children.  I believe we all do the very best.  And when we fall short, we can pray.

I have this little game that came out of one of my monster mommy episodes.  I call myself, Monster Mommy some times.  I'm not always a monster.  But I can channel a monster.  It's really ugly.  But the grace of God prevails and because His spirit dwells in me now I have access to the most amazing information.

So one day I was M.M.  Horrible. PMS?  Whatever?  Unacceptable behavior.  I make no excuses.  Bad behavior is bad behavior, even if it's mine.

So my boys are crying, I'm angry about something, I'm yelling, I just cannot get out of my way.  I shout, "Now the day is ruined...we just woke up and everything is ruined!!"

I turned to walk down the hall. I knew my outburst was wrong.  They are little people just trying to figure it out.  I walk in my room and ask God, "How can this be fixed? Please Help."

I make an about face and walk to where the boys are.  "Boys", I say, "see this?"  They look up at my hand holding nothing.  "We don't see anything, Mommy."

"You don't."

"I'm holding the world's biggest eraser in my hand."

"We can erase the morning and begin again."  I start swinging my arm back and forth into the air, as though I am erasing a chalkboard.

"Now go back in your beds."

"What?  We just woke up."

"I know.  But if we are to start the day over, we need to do it right."

They hop back into their beds, giggling.  Already the healing has begun.  That's how He works.  He doesn't waste a minute.

They begin snuggling, pretending they are sleeping.  I call out, "Boys, it's time to get up!"

Both boys come running out of their rooms.  "Good morning, Mommy!!"

"See we just started over.  We can do that if things aren't right.  OK?"


And that day sticks out in my mind like it just happened.  We have had a few of those days.  One of the boys will suggest we start again and grab for the eraser.  I have even heard my oldest say to my younger son, "Let's just start over OK.  We don't need to be grumpy, right?"

God makes it simple if we have the courage to lean on Him.  

My husband leans on Him now, too.  He feels more loved than he ever has in his entire life, he told me once.  He also told me that he loves more, too.  The loss never goes away, but LOVE can be the healing balm, soothing and calming the broken heart making it whole again.

An abundance of love flowing straight out to us....always any any any loss...or circumstance.

My wish is that today we open ourselves to receive His love, even in the midst of what life may have dealt us!

Happy Mother's Day,

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Whimsy Wednesday


Can one be in love with an inanimate object?

Don't call the therapist yet.

I think one can.

This is from a launch of a new venture from an amazingly talented woman.  She scares me she's so gifted in the arts.


And now we find out she sews too.

I fell head over heals in love with this bag.

I don't love bags or purses.  Not much.

This one? Yep.

Donna's having a giveaway.

She reached and then surpassed her 2000 followers.  Thank you friends for helping add a little sunshine to blog world!

 is giving a special discount on all her bags through the end of May with the launch of her new blog and venture.

Hop on over and check it out if you have a minute.

Total love.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Tassel Tuesday presents: Hanging around

This post has not one single thing to do with tassels.

I've been out looking at houses all day.

My head hurts.

But I wanted to tell ya

in case you didn't already know

Donna at Funky Junk Interiors is having another party! 

When she hits 2000 she's celebrating.

And we can all join in.

Now I know most of you over there on the sidebar already know Donna.

In case you don't follow her, may I make a suggestion?


You will not, no never, be sorry for it.

In fact you will be better for it.

Trust me.

And those of you who read here and don't have a blog or follow or any of this blog lingo,

you can join too!

Real simple.

Go to the side bar and click FOLLOW.

And then DONE.

That's it.

Last time I checked she was at 1978!!!

This morning she was at 1949.

So we're all helping her get the word out!!!


Now I've gotta figure out whether I'm coming or going or staying or leaving.

We just got a call from my sister.
Her friend wants to buy our house.
Somebody help me!


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