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Monthly Archives: September 2013

No Egrets

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When my friend Cyndi came to visit us this summer with her family, she happily told me that when she gets a beach house, she will name it “No Egrets.”  We laughed then but the more I have thought about it, the funnier it has become and now anytime I see egrets or a silly beach house name, I think of Cyndi.  I measure my friends on the silver to gold scale by the things that make me think of them.  Cyndi is definitely solid gold.  I had lots of chances this past week to read those fun beach house names when my family was offered a Pawleys Island beach house for the week.  It is the second time we had the immense pleasure of staying at Granny’s Beach House and it is a no frills, no worries, hammock on the porch, sleeps 21, bare bones beauty of a place.  We were all a little sad to lock the door on Saturday and head back to our own house but so thankful for our week “away.”

 

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Even before our week at the beach front, I was busily cleaning the house while Lilly and Willow watched Octonauts when the door bell rang.  I thought it strange since Wil was outside fixing….stuff.  I opened the door prepared to see Wil there with a story about why he rang the doorbell and I had a silly song about beans trying on some jeans I was going to serenade him with but surprise surprise, it was my mom and dad!  They had kept the visit a big ol’ secret and I had been thinking they were in Michigan or Minnesota or one of those M states when they had called earlier in the day.  Their two week visit was full of hugs, laughter, dad/daughter breakfast gab sessions, free babysitting, and that comfortable feeling that only family can provide.  Mom, myself and the girls made a trip to see some of my aunts and uncles while they were vacationing at Oak Island and my mom surprised all of them too.  Some things never change:  Aunt Sandy still makes cat noises, Uncle Larry is still adored by the little ones and gives the best hugs, Aunt Linda is a great person to talk to, Aunt Rita for one makes excellent party trail mix and is hilarious with her dog, Uncle Mike is loud but considerate, and Vickie fits right in.  Lilly and Willow adored having my folks here and Willow asked for them for many days after they left.

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One of the days my folks were here, I was able to go shrimpin’ (the g is not allowed).  The company of the Nichols was great but popping heads off shrimp isn’t quite my thing.  We saw lots of jelly fish and heard the sound of a sea turtle surfacing near by.  It was a beautiful day and I enjoyed the time away from the routine of kids.

 

 

Last year at this time I had the fall blues because I knew what fall was supposed to feel like to me and it just doesn’t feel that way here.  This year, I am still aware that the leaves are changing somewhere but I’m okay with it.  Maybe I’m okay with it because Willow is hitting the twos with a vengeance and that keeps me deliriously on my toes.  Maybe I’m okay with it because I have purpose here that I was struggling to establish at this time last year.  Maybe I’m okay with it because wearing flip flops and t-shirts is cheaper.  Maybe I’m okay with it because this will be home for my children and this will be what is in their blood for October.  We still put up fall leaf decorations today in honor of my hometown but I feel a little crazy doing so.  As I was hanging the orange and yellow leaf filled wreath, two frogs were stuck to the door silently protesting my choice.  A  parishioner and friend at our church came up to me excited to share a tip since she to is from Western North Carolina.  She said that she has had time to really see the ocean and beach through each season and that she now knows the sand changes texture and color too.  Guess I’ll need to do some research while basking in the sun and watching the waves roll in and out.

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Fated To Pretend

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My children pretend all the time.  If they aren’t princesses, they’re dinosaurs and if they’re not dinosaurs they’re babies and this happens all day long.  Willow likes to pretend to be bigger and older and Lilly likes to pretend to be in charge.  I love it when children pretend.  Encouragement comes in the form of costumes or agreeing to play the sick patient to Doctor Lilly.

Even animals pretend.  Snakes pretend to be poisonous and bugs pretend to be sticks. It seems natural.

This past week, we hosted a tea party at our house and Lilly proclaimed that for this tea party, she would be Aurora.  Somewhere down the line, pretending isn’t as grand and the innocence of being that superhero becomes the reality of just being human.

  I’m truthfully and 100% of the time a mom.  I may not always be award winning material but I will now forever be a mommy. There are times in my life where I am not always 100% of what I seem to be.  Wearing my heart on my sleeve might keep me open and vulnerable but I have force smiled my way through a few social obligations.  I’ve lied to people because the truth would have only unnecessarily hurt them.  I’ve even pretended to be interested in topics that while discussing them, my mind drifted to things I would much rather have been discussing, you know, like the Muppets or the existence of aliens.  So even though I think myself as a true and honest individual, I do pretend sometimes to be something I am not.

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  I know of people who pretend through tough things like illness, sadness, or confusion.  For Lilly and Willow, I want them to be the the kind of people that can be honest about who they are, what they are struggling with, where they’ve succeeded, where they’ve failed.  So, when Lilly  says that she will be going to college in order to become a princess, I will happily pretend that this is a great idea because in her heart, this is truth.

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Community That Cares

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The cord grass has started to change colors which means that fall is near.  The promise of a new season gets me excited for all the holidays, food, and weather that comes with it.

This past Saturday, myself and a team of community volunteers picked up the brown grocery bags that had been left in mailboxes in my neighborhood.  On Friday night, I had nightmares of rain, no shows and empty doorsteps so when I opened my curtains Saturday and saw that my neighbor had put her brown bag on her door step, my heart fluttered like it used to on Christmas morning.  It had worked!  People were actually going to participate!  As my friends and neighbors showed up to start collecting at the 400+ houses, my worries vanished and were replaced by gratitude.  After only 45 minutes of riding in the back of the El Camino and hopping out to grab filled bags, we were all finished and headed to the Food Pantry to stock the shelves.  We not only filled those shelves but we filled the storage unit as well.  Over 175+ bags full of food made the trip and they can now go home with those of us that need the support.

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Also on Saturday we had the Willow Grace Kubb Invitational (a.k.a. Birthday Party).  It was very low key and relaxed and we enjoyed eating cake and hearing about the upcoming football games.

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Like with Lilly, Willow received items to give to Miss Ruby’s Kids for her birthday.  I took her to deliver the books, stickers and pencils.  Thanks to everyone that brought something to give in Willow’s honor.

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With such a busy weekend, we didn’t make it to the beach so my first order of awesome Monday after naps was a trip to the beach and it did not disappoint.  The water was clear, the breeze was keeping all the bugs away and the sun was shining.  September is shaping up to be my favorite beach month because the conditions are just about perfect.  We saw lots of jelly fish but we were careful as we played in the surf and made sand balls.

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Ballerinas and Birthdays

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Wil and Willow

 

It’s been a special couple of days.  First off was Lilly’s first dance class. We signed her up about three weeks ago and almost everyday since she has asked if it was dance day.  Yesterday, I finally got to say it was and she put on every single pink dance thing we could muster up and she went to class.  I watched as they played a few getting- to- know- you games and came back later to see that they had already learned how to place their feet.  This girl loves to dance and she is already asking when the next class will be.

 

Today was a different kind of special.  Wil and Willow share today as the day they were born!  With a party set for Saturday, today was low key.  Lilly “helped” Willow open her presents after the chocolate chip pancake feast.  Last year, Lilly remembered opening the gifts for Willow but she was sadly mistaken this year as Willow protested that she was quite capable of opening them herself.  Stickers and bubbles were the clear present winners and we spent some time playing with those before the girls went off to school.  Wil and I headed out for breakfast where I ate a breakfast burrito the size of my head!  No, seriously, it was that big.  Then we hit the beach for a swim in the clear water.  I love it when I can see the bottom and all the fish swimming by.  When I say “love it”, I actually squeal like a little girl and beg the air I breath that nothing will touch me but you know, whatever.

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After picking up the tired girls from school, the birthday people got naps and were ready for the creation of a huge end of summer dinner with orange tomato slices, white peaches, fried okra, oven roasted corn on the cob and ribs.  Everyone found something that they couldn’t get enough of.  As I tried to draw a number two for a birthday photo shoot with Willow, she was very persuasive as she grabbed the marker from my hand and said, “I dod it.”  I was left with a Willow art piece but it made for the perfect birthday background prop.

Happy Birthday to the man of the house and my smallest girl!  May your new year bring growth and lots of happiness.

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