NaBloPoMo Challenge Completed!

It’s been a long 30 days of daily posts. I think the challenge was good for me and I enjoyed it. I will admit that this past week I have had to “phone it in” with some quick posts because there was so much going on here over the holiday week.

I am glad that I decided to make the commitment to do it. It brought a lot of new people/blogs into my sphere, and now I am hoping to find time to start visiting more of them than I have had the chance to thus far. We’ll see – it’s not like December is a slow month!

Trying to post every single day really stretched me, but it also reminded me that I am capable of rising to a challenge. When I have committed to various challenges that are 30 days or 90 days, I have been very faithful to keeping those commitments, and I have done far better than if I just have a vague “I should really try to do that more” general thought about something.

I’m thinking I need to commit to one or two things every month in that manner, be it a health commitment, mailing an encouraging note daily, practicing something I’m learning, etc. After taking on a few different challenges in 2014, I have learned that challenging myself to commit to something for a specific time period results in my being far more likely to accomplish it.

Now the question is which challenge should I take on next that won’t add too much to the craziness that is December.

Thank you all who have followed and commented during NaBloPoMo. I have appreciated every interaction, and I hope to get to know people here and maybe even strike up a friendship or two.

Hugs!

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Time

Saturday evening and it’s quiet.

It’s not truly quiet, which is a rarity when a 12-year-old boy is present, but still, it feels quiet.

My girl left last night and when my girl leaves, for a little while it’s like the air is sucked out of the house. The atmosphere is different without her. It’s as if the house knows she’s gone again too, and it requires a day or two to regain it’s equilibrium, just like me, to adjust to her absence again.

Even though she’s called me twice today and I’ve heard her voice, it’s not the same as her being present. I know it’s only 3 weeks until she’ll be back, and those 3 weeks are ridiculously busy this year and surely they’ll fly by, and yet it will simultaneously be a long 3 weeks.

Time.

Clock

I think often about how odd it is, passing in a blink as well as feeling interminable, sometimes at the exact same time. I often wonder if my perception of time is similar to or different from how others experience it. There are memories of people that are so vivid I feel I can almost touch them and surely they were just a few weeks or months ago, not decades. Then there are other things that no matter how I strain, I can’t quite recall, or that are from the very same time period as the vivid ones, yet they seem a lifetime ago.

Time. 

Memories and feelings can make people feel as near as a heartbeat, just beyond the reach of our fingertips, yet as unreachable as if on the other side of a great chasm.

Thankful Thursday – Thanksgiving Edition

It’s been a long day, but one filled with love and laughter, and my heart (and belly) is full. I hope you have all had a wonderful Thanksgiving as well, whether you were surrounded by friends and family or, as some of my friends far away, had a day of solitude and self-pampering.

There is much for which to be thankful, and I hope you can all think of several things today.

Today I am thankful for:

* My family.

* The sounds of my children’s voices all together and especially their laughter.

* Warm clothing on cold, snowy, 15-degree nights. Also tea and pie.

* The aroma of all the foods cooking today.

* YOU. Yes, I am thankful for you, people who are following me, people I have connected with here, people I have yet to connect with, people just passing by. Each and every one of you who sees these words is a unique individual who brings your own special gifts to the world, so today I am thankful for you. You matter.

Happy Thanksgiving! (Hug)

What Is the Best Thing that Anyone Has Ever Said to You?

What is the best thing that anyone has ever said to you?

A friend posed this question to me awhile back.

I’ve been pondering this for awhile now, and I know there is something I am forgetting, a moment when I remember saying the exact words “that’s one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me.” The fact that I can’t recall what it was now is driving me batty.

I can say that I have been told several times that I am easy to talk to and, even better, the words “I trust you” and “I trust you completely.” When someone says that to me, especially someone who hasn’t really known me all that long, or maybe not even actually met me but communicated with me only through some form of the written word, that means the world to me, that they have that much faith in me, that they feel they can trust me with their more private selves, and I value that incredibly highly. I don’t even know how to aptly put into words how that makes me feel. Deeply honored.

However, one instance in particular does stand out in my mind.

A few years ago while we were out shopping, my kids opted to take a rest around a patio table that was set up in the store while we went to check something out. (My oldest was old enough to be responsible for them.) When we returned, there was an older gentleman sitting at the table with the kids, chatting.

He told us who he was, his age – in his eighties, I believe, and a bit of his personal history, that he had met all kinds of people in his lifetime. He then went on to tell us that he had been chatting with my kids, and what a pleasant exchange they’d had.

He said he wanted to take the opportunity to let us know what a nice little family we were, that my children were well mannered, bright, and how he was impressed with their answers to his questions about various topics. He even went on to say that he thought my youngest could become President one day, that he had leadership qualities, and that he would certainly vote for him.

What really got me, however, was when he made a point to say that as parents we were really doing something right, that we were raising really great kids.

As someone who more often than not has wondered if I am doing anything right as a parent, who has often experienced self-doubt and felt like I have floundered badly, this was really something to hear.

I have keenly felt the loss of the benefit of being able to go to my own parents for wisdom and parenting advice, or even encouragement, so this struck right at the heart of me. After he left, I welled up with tears – and am again now just thinking about it as I write this – and I don’t think I was able to speak much for awhile.

For a complete stranger to take the time to get to know my children a little, to see such good qualities in them, and to make a point to offer such words of encouragement and praise about parenting them, that has really stayed with me, and is truly one of the very nicest things anyone has ever said to me.

Shout Out to New Followers

This isn’t today’s post – that will come later. I just have had such an influx of new followers, I’m assuming largely due to NaBloPoMo, that I wanted to say hi to everyone and thank you for following, liking, and commenting. It is very much appreciated.

I have not had time to even visit a fraction of your blogs in return yet, but after this busy week is over, I hope to visit a few each day and follow back. Don’t give up on me! I will get to it eventually.

Have a lovely day! (Hug)