Monday, May 27, 2013

You Get What You Get

You get what you get,
and you don't throw a fit!

That is one of my favorite school sayings. Mind you, not my creation. It originated from one of my kinders last year. Who knows where she heard it?

Kind of like that hot lava game the kids always play. We don't teach them or suggest it, but each new group ends up playing hot lava and they go out of their way to avoid the items that are assigned hot lava (bark, asphalt, carpet, jungle gym...) status. My own kids played it years ago. Again. Not my idea. They just knew about it and played.

I do, however, often use You get what you get and you don't throw a fit! It works so perfectly when I am distributing something and I would rather not deal with the I want's or don't have time to creatively figure out a way to make the passing out a fun game. This saying fits the bill. It also helps when the kids come up with it on their own and I don't have to say a word.

The other day, I realized I say this often. But I don't apply it to myself. Hardly ever.

Here I am. An adult. Whining about the unfairness of life (express purpose of the saying) or lack of money or why do they have more? I don't like this or that. I'd rather have this. Or perhaps I am just enviously gazing at someone's beautiful garden (in which they have more room than I do to be more creative and grow more vegetables or entertain more people or have three chickens - that's all I want. Just three).

Feeling a little convicted and heretical about the whole thing. I KNOW life is not fair. I also know, for a fact, that I have plenty of whatever it is I'm whining about. I know I have much, much more than most of the world's population.

Yet I let that slide through the sieves in my mind and dwell repeatedly on my own covetousness. I don't like that about myself at all. Seriously, if I had more (of whatever it is I think I'm missing), I would just have to take care of it, right?

And ultimately, my personal goal is to live simply and to simply life. Focus on the good stuff.

Why, oh, why do I whine? And covet? Envy?

Human. Sinner. Fallen.

But there is hope. I recently read something in a blog or newsletter, and I wish I could remember where. But the author stated that yes, life is unfair. And she was exceptionally glad about that. Because it was unfair that Jesus had to die on the cross for our sins. But He did it anyway, though He is the only one perfect, without sin. The only fair thing about His sacrifice is that we all have the choice on whether or not to embrace it.

And aren't I glad about that?

Sincerely, yes.

So, Miss Fancy Pants (not really, but I'll call myself that), You get what you get and don't throw a fit.

Instead, I should be thanking. And praising.

(What have I got? Almost 28 years with a wonderful man!)

For what I do get.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Always a Writer

Cleaning up after my four year old grandson with his cutting and writing, I was suddenly taken back to my own childhood. I must have been about his age. I distinctly remember wanting to be able to write so badly that I used a pen and made sprawling loops and curlicues all across sheets of paper. I recall the strong desire to (and envy of) write like I witnessed the grown-ups around me doing. So I made up my own writing.

Years later, in middle school, I asked permission of my 7th grade teacher to go somewhere to write. Somewhere, as in not in the classroom. Class work was a variety of choices. I chose writing. I still have the cougar covered notebook filled with "The Mystery of Black Devil's Forest," my mystery novel filled with terror (7th grade version), horses (of course), and Washington state (where I must have subconciously dreamed of living, since I was devastated when we actually DID move back to Washington the following year).

When I began writing (not counting the mounds of verbage required for high school, college, and all forms of education) as an adult, I fumbled around with changing technology. Earlier writings had all been archaically completed with pencil(s) and paper. The next rounds were tapped into existence on first manual and then electric typewriters. (What's that you ask? Google it.) Finally, after many horrendously long manuscripts (for typewriters do not have word count), I made the leap to PC. Yes, that probably still dates me, as there are other forms of more cutting edge technology available. But I will keep my PC.

That first PC, though, was used just for typing the final copy. I still wrote out the manuscript by hand and then word processed it into the computer. It took numerous projects before I could get my mind around the whole game of typing and rewriting on a screen. No more pencil scribblings, circling, arrows, cross outs, or carrots adding words and phrases.

Despite the method of committing word to paper, I have to write. I see others write, and I feel that urge to pen my own. I read and want to write. I write and think of more to write. It is a compelling thing. I often don't know when to stop writing (yes, we know, you say). I can go on indefinitely. Another flashback - college blue books. We had to provide these little notebooks for certain tests that required hand written answers, paragraph style. My goal, although unstated, was to always use up all of the paper in each blue book, regardless of the exam. I wonder if technology has changed and they are allowed to use an Ipad or PC or other form of technology?

Regardless of the instrument, I have to write.

Just give me a pad of paper and a pen. I will write.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Sea Glass

We friends strolled along the beach, collecting, searching, scavenging for bits of this and that as momentos of our time together. The favored flotsam was sea glass. Any bit of glass, blue, green, amber, or translucent was intently considered, admired, and displayed. The most tumbled, distressed pieces were cheerfully tucked into pockets for the ride home. Other findings of glass, those not quite done yet, were tossed back to the foamy waves to cook some more. Those rejected now pieces would be treasures in future years.

As we chatted and tossed, collected and wandered, the whole sea glass process made me wonder. Does God do that to us? Does He collect us from the beaches of life, rescue us out of the waves? I know He rescues us, but how does He decide when? And who? Who is pocketed and who is ready to go home? Conversely, how does He decide who is not finished yet and is tossed back for more tumbling in life's ocean? And how can I be content when I am in the wash, so to speak? Some days, waiting patiently to be complete is quite the challenge.

Next time, and the next after that, when I am weary of the storms I face and the waves that rub me raw, I'll try and remember that I'm being polished to be God's beach treasure. When I'm done, I'll finally get put in His pocket and be carried home.

~my collection of flotsam, including bits of sea glass

~my favorite fancy sea glass

PS And as I wait, I'll try to figure out how and why in the world this post is underlined! There was a short computer blip, and voila', there you have it. I don't even have an underline feature that I can find on this thing...

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The Perfect Set-Up

We have new (returning, I should say) neighbors, who are up with the sun and very vocal.

Not only that, but as I was unlocking the back gate, I noticed they are messy. It appears they have found the perfect set-up!

Our backyard, our water fountain, our chain link fence, and the next door roof have become home to a happy, noisy, poopy group of sparrows.

The listing view - water feature, multiple bathrooms, penthouse apartment with view

Close up of potty perches and close proximity of penthouse

Roof level entry into private residence

Who wouldn't move in? Fresh water nearby, the perfect chain link perch, situated just so for potty purposes, oodles of trees, shrubs, and hiding places, bugs galore, and a secure (= too high for fat cat), hidden cavity home sweet home for the kiddos and little lady.

Sorry, no vacancy until next spring.