Threat

I am not the child I once was.

A statement that on its face is very obvious. Those who know me well will know that I have a penchant for stating the obvious. It sometimes amazes me how people can over-look the obvious; or assume that because it’s obvious, it’s simple. Obvious does not equate simple.

So what does this less than enigmatic statement reveal? What am I trying to express? I’m so glad you asked!!!

I don’t take kindly to threats.

Threatening me or mine (especially mine!) isn’t a very wise course of action. Now, when I was a child–that very same child I no longer am–if you threatened me or mine, you saw an instantaneous response. A flash of anger, perhaps rage–I’d go on the defensive, or offensive. I reacted. Often with little thought or consideration.

Not so these days. No, these days I’m more prone to hold my tongue, hold my actions, think, and prepare a response. I don’t go off half-cocked like I used to as a kid. That’s not to say I ignore such threats. I don’t. I don’t take them lightly. And I certainly don’t forget they were made.

As a child, I was powerless. Or pretty damn near so. I wasn’t always capable of dealing with threats to me or my family well–so I did the best I could. I was about as effective as using a sledgehammer to nail a finishing nail. Got the job done, but it wasn’t always pretty–and sometimes you were left with bigger holes in your furniture than that caused by the tiny nail.

I am no longer powerless.

Threats have been made.

I’m not so foolish as to post details and the like on a public blog. (That’s part of the whole “not being the child I was” thing)

No matter what course of action is taken in response to these threats (and inaction is an action, and can be quite powerful in its own right)…I will not forget that threats were made. I am not so foolhardy as to simply dismiss such actions. What trust there was, is now gone.

Those who’ve known me longest–aren’t you amazed at much I’ve matured???  ~grins~

Our Budding Da Vinci

Hannah Rose surprised me today with a chalkboard rendering of E.V.E. and WALL-E. She drew these pictures by herself and completely from memory!

Here’s the first pic I shot:

Here’s the artist with her finished masterpiece. (It should be noted that on this one she incorporated different scenes from the movies…)

It’s interesting that she should do this today–because at dance camp, one of the things they did was to colour a picture of Hello Kitty in a tutu. She’s in a class for 3-5 year olds, and is a young 5. I got to see her picture today, as well as some of the other girl’s pictures. A number of them had coloured in the lines quite well. Hannah Rose had not. She’s still not colouring inside the lines.

That’s not to say that’s a bad thing–and indeed, I’ve not once actually encouraged her to colour inside the lines. I remember being her age, and working so hard to colour inside the lines like the older kids–and to outline everything in black as well. I’ve often wondered if I started colouring inside the lines too soon. When you look at a little kids picture, coloured in “crazy” colours and all over the place instead of traditional colours inside the lines–there’s a certain freedom there.

Kids grow up all too fast. Unless of course, you ask them. Hannah Rose is vascillating right now between wanting to never grow up and wanting to be grown up (so she can have a baby!). So while part of me is anxious to see the woman Hannah Rose will become, and to watch her on that journey–I’m not going to hurry her up along that path. She’s still a child, and while I’m not so idealistic as to believe in the perfect childhood for anyone–I want her to have a childhood.

My childhood ended at the age of 5….and before that, it was hurried up tremendously. And while that’s one of the myriad of things that have created the me I now love, and have brought me to this life I’m now living–I don’t have to want that for her, or for any of our (future) children. I say let her colour out of the lines–for as long as she wants. Let her draw her cats with purple fur and her clouds pink.

Wordle

Did a wordle of my blog, and this is what I got:

Tragedy for Steven Curtis Chapman’s family

In a statement issued by Jim Houser (Manager)…

“Maria Sue Chapman, adopted and youngest daughter to Mary Beth and Steven Curtis Chapman, was killed Wednesday night in a tragic accident in the family driveway on Wednesday evening. She was LifeFlighted to Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital but for only reasons God can explain she went home to Him… not to Franklin as we all so desperately wanted.

Your prayers are needed for all in the Chapman family. This is a family who has so generously loved and given to so many. Just hours before this close knit family was celebrating the engagement of the oldest daughter Emily Chapman, and were just hours away from a graduation party marking Caleb Chapman’s completion of high school. Now, they are preparing to bury a child who blew out 5 candles on a birthday cake less than 10 days ago. These words are unthinkable to type. And yet we trust in a God who was not surprised by this and because of Jesus I am certain through faith in Him we will see Maria again. – Jim Houser (Manager)”

The following video is one of Maria from a video blog shot with her father Steven Curtis Chapman.

My heart goes out to Steven Curtis Chapman and his whole family.  I don’t even want to imagine the amount of grief and suffering they are experiencing, for it must be great.  Their darling Maria Sue was the same age as Hannah Rose. 

I know there is tragedy in this world on a daily basis, to which I don’t usually comment here in my blog.  But about this I couldn’t be silent.  Steven Curtis Chapman’s music has touched my life in profound ways over the years.  His music has helped me to weather many storms.  It is my prayer now that the inspiration behind his music and the God he so loves will help him, and his family, to weather this storm.

The following videos are the story behind Steven Curtis Chapman’s song Cinderella, and the video for it.  Warning:  you may need kleenex.

Steven Curtis Chapman Website

 Steven Curtis Chapman’s On-line Channel

 

(Left to right Will Franklin, Maria, Steven, Shaoey, Mary Beth, Stevey Joy, Caleb and Emily)

Birthday Surprise #1

Hannah Rose saw her new dresser and nightstand this evening when she got home.  (They’re awesome birthday gifts from Chris’s parents, John and Kay!!!)  I got a short video of her when she first entered her room and saw them.  (I was hiding in her room.)  She was too cute.  Immediately she starts personalizing both of them.  I had her fairies in the wrong order so she had to correct them.  Then she put her basket of baby stuff on the shelf of her nightstand!  She went through her drawers to see where all her clothes now live.  She was able to open and close the drawers by herself just fine.  (And they have drawer stops on them so we’re not afraid of them falling out on her.) 

She’s looking forward to her birthday party tomorrow.  Here’s the video and pics from this evening:

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Fostering Imagination

We want to foster imagination and creativity in Hannah Rose.  To further that aim, we’ve been doing some things differently of late.  We have drastically reduced her screen-time (all tv, movie, computer, video game time combined) to no more than 1 -2 hours a day.  That’s the max–there are days when she has zero screen-time.  We’ve also decided to curb some of the Disneyana that we were buying her.  We’re still buying her some Disney products–but we’ve decided that those products will be things that won’t necessarily help her re-create a Disney movie.  For instance, she’s getting a Disney Princess kite–it’s still Disney, but it’s a kite.  It doesn’t really matter what’s on a kite cause you run in a park with it and fly it.  (Or a beach…)

I can’t say this has been the easiest thing to do.  It hasn’t been.  It’s been a big adjustment for all of us.  I see Tinkerbell or Disney Princess whatever–and I’m wanting to buy it for her!  I know she’ll like it…but then I take a deep breath, and think about what’s best for her.  If that doesn’t work, Chris drags me away from whatever is calling to me at the moment.  We’re working on introducing new toys and new ways to play. 

Reducing screen-time hasn’t been the easiest either.  We’re getting more used to it and establishing new routines.  I think once it’s a bit warmer and we’re outside playing more, it’ll be even easier.  (Can you say swimming pool?  Yes! we have one and I plan for us to take great advantage of it!)  It’s just too easy first thing in the morning when neither Chris nor I are fully awake, and she is, to put on some cartoons for her to watch.  The television is easy entertainment. 

However, I do believe our efforts are beginning to pay off!  We had Hannah Rose for an extended weekend this past weekend due to her Easter break.  I’m noticing a difference in her play.  Wednesday I printed up some Easter colouring pages for her.  She had fun colouring and decorating them.  (She really enjoys art projects.)  Then, instead of going the easy route and turning on the tv while we waited for Chris to get home–I asked her to tell me a story about the little girl in the drawing.  I got a whole half hour of stories and songs for the asking!  The next morning she was telling me even more stories about the little girl she christened, “Wendy.”

To create her stories, she wove laces of reality, books, movies, songs, and things she pulled out of the air.  This is creativity.  Creativity is more than merely fashioning something out of nothing.  It also entails taking what is and combining it in ways that give rise to new forms.  This is the beginning of “thinking outside the box.”  She’s making her own songs; lyrics and melodies.  When she sits at our electronic piano, she hears the tune the demo plays–and then makes up her own songs and harmonies to go with it.  Granted, she’s no Mozart (who is these days?)–but I love the creativity! 

She even went on a camel hunt with Chris this past weekend.  At one point Chris was a camel–but then she also found two more camels that weren’t Chris.  Who knew camels lived in our house?! 

We can still see the effect of Disney and movies on her play, and that’s ok.  We don’t mind it having some effect–we just don’t want that to become a limiting box on her imagination and creativity.  So sometimes when we go down to the basement, we walk into Tir na nOg.  I become the fairy Rosetta, and she’s Tinkerbell.  At other times, we’re being chased by evil cheese and the Rock Monsters in the basement save us.  I can live with Tinkerbell and Rock Monsters in the basement.  After all, the greatest crime would be that the basement is only and always ever just a basement.

This video is from Wednesday night when she was telling me stories about “Wendy.” 

New Number

Hey all!!!  I just recently switched from t-mobile to Verizon (Chris and I are on the same plan).  I sent out text messages and emails with my new number…but if you’re supposed to have my new number and you don’t…hit me up and I’ll get it to you.  (NO, I’m not silly enough to post my new number here!!!  lol)

Obese People Won’t be Served?

Found this at   Chow

  

Obese People Not Served Here

Mississippi is considering a bill that would make it illegal for restaurants to serve obese people. Any establishment with a permit to serve food, the bill says, would “not be allowed to serve food to any person who is obese, based on criteria prescribed by the State Department of Health”—and if it did, the state could pull the restaurant’s permit.

Even if the bill is not expected to survive debate in the House, and is just “political theater,” it does evoke visions of a future with scales at restaurant doors, and kitchens keeping records of each patron’s body mass index. Is this what politicians really want? Sandy Szwarc at Junkfood Science contacted the bill’s lead author, Republican representative W. T. Mayhall Jr., to inquire about his intentions. Mayhall explained that he wrote the bill to “call attention to the serious problem of obesity and what it is costing the Medicare system.”

The Obesity Action Coalition feels that if the bill draws attention to anything, it’s to blatant discrimination against overweight people. It sure does creepily recall Jim Crow laws.

 

All I can say this to this is….what the hell???

Welcome to my World!

I’m a crazy Irish lass living in Michigan!  Decided to blog about the goings on in my life and family so that friends and family who are near and far can be included in all the goings on!