Saturday, April 12, 2014

Thinking about happiness


The dogwood blooms in our front yard
The past few weeks have been....well, challenging.  We (this family) are all adjusting to different work loads and ever evolving schedules on top of the usual "life stuff" like Dr. appointments, getting to know a new babysitter, car tune ups, and getting over seasonal colds.  There have been wonderful moments and there have been very, very difficult ones.  But that's life isn't it?

Have you read or seen this quote by Hugh Mackay, a social researcher and author?

"I actually attack the concept of happiness.  The idea that- I don't mind people being happy - but the idea that everything we do is part of the pursuit of happiness seems to me a really dangerous idea and has led to a contemporary disease in Western society, which is fear of sadness.  It's a really odd thing that we're now seeing people saying "write down 3 things that made you happy today before you go to sleep", and "cheer up" and "happiness is your birthright" and so on.  We're kind of teaching our kids that happiness is the default position - it's rubbish.  Wholeness is what we ought to be striving for and part of that is sadness, disappointment, frustration, failure; all of those things which make us who we are.  Happiness and victory and fulfillment are nice little things that also happen to us, but they don't teach us much.  Everyone says we grow through pain and then as soon as they experience pain they say "Quick! Move on! Cheer up!" I'd like just for a year to have a moratorium on the word "happiness" and to replace it with "wholeness".  Ask yourself "is this contribuiting to my wholeness?" and if you're having a bad day, it is."


There are times when I want so badly for my children to have days of perfection; when the crying, temper tantrums, discipline, and whining seem too much to bear.  This quote reminds me that it's OK, it's ok to not be happy all the time, it's ok to be frustrated, mad, and bored, and it's ok for my children to experience these things.  It does not make me a bad parent or bad mother (which seems to be an ever-present fear these days).

And so we are all learning, all the time, trying to live whole-heartedly.  I have been challenged so much recently to love, to forgive, to serve, to laugh, to prioritize, to let things go.  How lucky am I?





13/52 & 14/52




Parker:  Sitting and holding "giraffea" while listening to one of his records.

Reece:  Crawling across the floor to reach into big brother's legos.




Parker:  Contemplating his next move.

Reece:  Trying out the swing.

Monday, March 31, 2014

12/52


52 Project - A portrait series of my children, once a week, in 2014

Parker:  This picture is so sweet to me, it almost brings tears to my eyes.

Reece:  He's coming at ya - scootin around the floor this week to find all kinds of things.  Time to start vacuuming more frequently!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Lately

After a spring weather teaser, we've been mostly inside this week due to colder temps.  We've been entertaining ourselves with painting:



learning to crawl:


reading books at the library (at least Parker anyway-ha)


and trying on fake mustaches





Friday, March 21, 2014

11/52


52 Project: A portrait series of my children, once a week, in 2014

Reece:  And, he's up on all fours, practice, practice, practice

Parker:  Drinking lemonade in the afternoon sunlight with messy hair.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Welcome Spring


Photo from Pinterest/Source Unknown


The forecast today calls for sun and a high of 71, woohoo!  Our plans will include time outside at the park and playground.  While this winter was, for me, a nice hibernation with a new baby, I am happily anticipating warmth, sandals, blooming flowers, and cocktails in the evening light.

In other news, Reece is trying to crawl.  He doesn't have the forward motion yet, but he's getting up on his hands and knees.  How did we get here already?!



And this picture is from yesterday morning after we had all woken up and were still hanging out in bed.  Parker usually wants to come in the bedroom where I am feeding Reece and see him first thing in the morning, giving him hugs and kisses.  They are beginning to interact more and more each day and seem to enjoy it.  But I'm definitely going to have my hands full.


Monday, March 17, 2014

what are you reading?


Have you read any good books lately?  I'm currently trying to read the two pictured above.  I say "trying" because I probably only read for 15-30 minutes a couple nights a week.  Plus both of these books have some sad events in the beginning, and I guess it's because I'm so sleep deprived and have all the new mom hormones right now, but reading about sad things really seems to affect me.  I enjoy reading magazine articles the most right now; they're light and short.

I'd like to read this book soon.