Saturday, November 27, 2010

Important Safety Instructions

I bought a new hairdryer, in hopes of stopping the frizz that keeps happening, and stopping my daughter from hi-jacking mine. She can have my old one now and leave me in peace!

I was reading the instructions for this hairdryer, because that's the kind of girl I am. I know, we all know how to operate one, but what if there's something new to learn in those instructions? What if all along I've been using it wrong and if I just read the instructions, I will end up looking like I have a stylist living in my closet who does my hair everyday (kind of like a trunk monkey, but BETTER!)

This is what I learned from the instructions for my new Vidal Sassoon Ionic Technology Hairdryer Model VSDR5540 (not every rule is listed, just the new or interesting ones). Be prepared to be WOWED!

1. An appliance should never be left unattended when using. (Really? Because I l turn my hair dryer on, then leave it alone on the counter all the time, don't you?)

2. Close supervision is necessary when this appliance is used by, on, or near children or individuals with certain disabilities. (I have never thought of that. What kind of disabilities? Mental? Physical? Educational? What'd they do, test it on an people with different disabilities and come to this conclusion? It seems kind of discriminatory, and they don't say what kind of disability. It's just a random, weird rule.)

3. Use this appliance only for its intended use as described in this manual. (Like, don't use it to dry my nails after painting? Or use on the engine of my car somehow? Or to dry my pants after getting water on them?)

4. Never use while sleeping. (Uh...okay.)

5. Never drop or insert any object into any opening. (Again, okay. And that's really just a good rule of thumb for anything in life, dontcha' think?)

6. DO NOT use outdoors or operate where aerosol products are being used or where oxygen is being administered. (So, I can't take it camping. Okay. Can't spray certain hair sprays around it. Okay, right? I've NEVER used aerosol hairspray around a hairdryer, have you?)

7. Never block the air opening of the appliance or place it on a soft surface, such as a bed or couch. (Shucks, I can't blow dry my hair in bed anymore. Son of a gun.)

So that's the gist of the crazy rules. Maybe these aren't news to you, but I'll NEVER attempt to use my blowdryer while sleeping, now that I've read these rules. You learn something new everyday.

Monday, November 22, 2010

What I learned from a 10 year old boy

My son Benjamin isn't always the easiest kid to get along with, or to parent. The reasons why aren't a discussion for today. Just know that he's never had TONS of friends. CYT has seemed to help him open up in different ways and a few new guy friends.
This latest CYT show was a new experience for us all. First show in 2 years that Madeleine hasn't participated, first solo show for Ben, Ben didn't have a super strong audition, didn't get called back, got a smaller part than he's previously gotten, he wasn't super excited about his costume (I thought it was adorable) and he hated his makeup (although after I let him vent initially, he never complained about it again). Then, he got sick for one show and had to miss it. I knew he was going through some trials but I was excited to see what God had planned, what kind of growth Ben was going to experience.

Ben was cast as one of two crabs, and the other crab happened to be a boy (I.) we've gotten to know a bit through a couple other shows. He and Ben really started to bond over "boy" stuff during the run of the show. Ben attempted to stay the night with I. on opening night (but doesn't do sleepovers so ended up coming home), and that night I saw something new to me in my son. He was crying when he came home, because he felt bad for his buddy. He worried about how disappointed I. would be when he woke up and found Ben gone.
Ben and his buddy are the two crabs.
Courtesy of Five Wishes Photography.

Then, during our closing show party, something happened that I will never forget. Awards were begin given out, and an award was given to Ben's friend for staying in character as a Crab. Disappointing, since there's only 2 crabs and they basically did the same thing, but the awards aren't like the Academy Awards or anything. I was happy for I. but sad for Ben. A few moments after that award was given, I see Madeleine walking with Ben to find me, and they are both crying. Madeleine says, "Ben is sad because I. got the award but not him." Ben lunges for me, sobbing so loud and making a bit of a scene, getting red makeup all over my white lace shirt. But as his Momma, all I could do was hold him and let him cry. It's not like anything wrong was done, or there was anyone to talk to who could change it. It was what it was....just a part of how life goes. I.'s mom came over and asked what was wrong, and I briefly told her, making sure she knows we weren't mad or anything, just disappointed and working through it. (BTW, I.'s mom is one of my favorite people ever). Ben seemed to be fine after a few moments, and we proceeded to get ready to wrap up the party.

Well, Teddy comes up a couple minutes later and tells me that Ben needs to share something with me in the car. I asked him to please just tell me and I'll feign ignorance in the car, because if it's something bad I don't want to overreact. He tells me that after the awards, I. came up to Ben with his award certificate. I. had crossed out his name, wrote in Ben's, and on the back wrote, "You stayed in character better than me." He then told Ben that he was his best friend and deserved the award more than him. Oh. My. Gosh. I started to cry, super hard then found I.'s mom and gave her a big hug, telling her that she raised a boy who's heart is so good. She started to cry too, and said she just told I. to go give Ben a hug to encourage him! I found I. and blubbered some dumb things about being a good kid and a good friend and has a heart for God and yada yada yada, probably overwhelming the poor 10 year old kid!

But I will never forget what he did. I. valued his friend's feelings more than his award, even though I. deserved the award. He cared more about encouraging Ben than having pride in himself. He showed initiative, kindness, compassion. I think it might be the nicest thing that anyone has ever done for Ben. Ben didn't really care about the award. He cared about being noticed, and I. took the time to NOTICE Ben. Isn't that what we all really want? To know that we are SEEN? That we matter? I. did this for Ben, and in the process taught me about loving another person...something I've not been too good at lately. And taught me a little about what I truly desire from know that He SEES me and KNOWS me.

Thanks, dear I.'s mom, for raising a boy of such character. You should be proud. And thanks, I. I hope you are my son's friend for a very long time, and I hope I can be a little like you when I grow up.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Lots to say

I have lots to say, so much on my mind. Those of you who know me well, know that I typically do not go to sleep before midnight. However, the last two nights, I've gone to sleep at 10:30 and 9:30. Tonight was 9:30...but here I sit at 1am, having woken up and not able to get back to sleep. I know it's mostly because of heavy thoughts on my mind. Oh how I wish to unload them onto you, my faithful readers, in hopes of some clarity or relief. But I also don't want to ONLY write about deep thoughts and severe emotions. Since these heavy thoughts aren't concentrated to one topic only, it does seem difficult to write about here. They include continuing faith issues that I've previously shared, as well as marriage junk, parenting woes, pre-teen drama, bd parties coming up, the holiday, bankruptcy issues, Christmas plans going awry....ahhhh, so much to think on.

So instead of delving deep into those, I thought I would share one of the beautiful things that happened this week!

Madeleine turned 12! Good grief, it seems like just yesterday I was looking at that stick turning pink with a positive sign. Her birthday was on Sunday and we had Ben's closing show and party for The Little Mermaid, but her morning started out with the cast singing her happy birthday after Sunday worship! That was fun! Then, after the strike party, our family went to dinner (including our good family friend, Kiana, who Madeleine considers one of her very best friends even though she is 6 years older--she's more of an older sister to her!). Kiana also stayed the night with her, which was fun. After dinner and after a quick trip home, I took Kiana and Madz to the store for a movie and some breakfast foods (and I made sure to act very embarrassing throughout the store). I also got them a treat at McDonald's and we had some funny times there. This coming weekend, Kiana is helping me to give Madeleine a bd party...not a lot of her friends can come, but it should still be a good time! I still can't believe that God blessed me with such a kind, caring, responsible, loving, mature, funny, and loyal first born child. I feel so lucky to have the children that I have, and so undeserving. I also can't believe I have a 12 year old!!!

A really great thing happened to Ben during the strike party of Little Mermaid that I can't wait to share, but it requires a longer posting. I will save it for later. For now, I am hoping my close friend Insomnia will leave me alone and let me get on in my journey toward slumber!