January 2013

January 2013
Our Little Family of Three

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

48 hours from now

We'll be in MINNESOTA!!! I always look forward to our visits out there. Let me list a few of the reasons why:

1) Green, green, green and absolutely gorgeous

2) We love hangin' out with Travis's parents, it doesn't matter what we do: out seeing a matinee, having dinner on the screened-in porch, playing cards, watching "So You Think You Can Dance", or cooking (hellooooo pazelles (sp?)) - they pretty much rock!

3) We're SUPER excited to see Nolan, Katie and our adorable niece Kherington (SO CUTE!!!!!!!!) again! We haven't seen them since Christmas!

4) We're thrilled to see Nicki & Kenny and meet their beautiful little Natalie!

5) It's ALWAYS a good time when Tim & Jen are around - of course. :)

6) Seeing Grandma Braun and playing 500
- I still suck at this game. Give me another 50 years and I might have it down...maybe.

7) Fishing with Dad
- I REFUSE to bait my fishing pole and often don't want to touch the fish but I still enjoy a peaceful afternoon out on the lake


9) Have I mentioned pazelles yet? ;)

10) Taking things one day at a time, not thinking about tomorrow just thinking about today. It's such a nice experience.

11) Watching the fireworks over the lake from the screened in porch while drinkin' daiquiris
- We did this a couple of years ago when Nic and Ash came out with us. It was such a beautiful night.

12) Going for evening walks around the neighborhood, exploring the neighborhood dock to the lake (is that what it's called?)

13) sNuGgLiNg to stay warm because the basement is FREEZING
- I'm not complaining. I sleep better in the cold and when I have my husband cuddling up to me. ;)

14) Attending church and meeting such good, humble people. It's also fun to see people from the last time we were out there.

15) Hittin' up the local garage sales
- It's WAY more fun with Mary Kay but since she can't go Trav and I try to do our best to find treasures.

We. Can't. Wait.

Monday, June 20, 2011

a cute little story (or two) to prove he's adorable

Tonight we had butter pound cake with vanilla ice cream and fresh blackberries on top. It was to die for. Delicious. Heavenly.

A conversation came about that went something like this:

Travis: What fruit is this? Are these blackberries?
Mom: Yes, they're blackberries.
Me: They're amazing, Mom! Why?
Travis: Are either of you getting seeds stuck in your teeth?
[Mom and I giggle a little]
Me: Cutie, you don't chew blackberries.
Travis: What do you do if you don't chew them?
Me: I don't know. You sort of...
Mom: ...squish them between your tongue and the roof of your mouth.
Travis: Hm.

[pause while we all take another bite]

Me & Mom: {look over at Trav and burst into loud laughter]
Me: Cutie! You DON'T chew blackberries!
Mom: [STILL LAUGHING as Trav looks over at us with HUGE eyes]
Travis: I'm trying to get the seeds out of my teeth!
Me: By chewing them?!


So lately Travis has been spending HOURS in his studio doing his art. He has been in heaven. I have been doing my best not to disturb him anymore than I have too. It's hard. I know it'll be harder once this summer block of classes ends because I should have way more free time and may want to spend some of it with him. I'll have to find a "buddy" to take his place for the summer. I don't want to mess up his goals.

Anyway, part of my not spending much time with him is he stays up until the wee hours of the night/morning. I try to be in bed at a descent time so I go to bed long before he does. Well, one night he crept into bed without waking me. He was able to fall fast asleep...and then the following happened:

Me & Trav: {honk! ZZZZZ!] <= That's us sleeping ;)

[HIGH PITCH, LOUD, FREAKY SCREAM with an equally huge body jump (the kind where you're still asleep)!!!!!!]

Me: [startled awake] Trav?


Me: [roll over to look at Trav] Trav, are you okay?
Travis: [laying on his back, WIDE EYED] Huh?
Me: Are you okay?

[Trav slowly moves his humongous eyes to look at me without moving his head (like he was paralyzed)]

Trav: Did I...
Me: [between laughter] You...just...screamed...like...a...WOMAN!

[I'm trying not to laugh too hard because he still seems to be half asleep.]

Trav: That was me?
Me: Yeah!
Trav: I knew I heard something but I couldn't tell if it was you or me.
Me: Well, it wasn't me! What were you dreaming about? [still giggling]
Trav: I don't know. A nightmare of some sort.


Me: [softly giggling] Go back to sleep, Cutie.

30 seconds later, Trav is out cold, floppin' like a fish.
And I'm doing everything I can to avoid shaking the bed from laughing so hard.

I love this man.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Most Powerful Truth I've Ever Heard


That little line has opened my eyes and freed my spirit. Just because I feel a certain way doesn't mean it's true. Despite what you may be thinking right now, I did not hear that in my Ed Psych class or my Multicultural class. No, this truth came from my wonderful therapist. When he first told me this I closed my eyes and asked him to repeat it, "Say that again." He did this three times. My soul needed to hear it. Then to hear it again. Then again.

So the next time you're feeling stuck in a rut, I encourage you to say these words out loud and REALLY analyze the situation. Is the way you feel based off of your own experiences and interpretations? Because if it is this is most definitely a truth - but it's your truth and yours alone. So what is real truth? I think real truth is when one takes on the perspective of others, not just their own, and looks at the situation from multiple stand points. Only then will a real truth be exposed.

I'm mediocre, at best, when it comes to doing this. It takes a lot of control. It's so much easier to be angry and offended. Lashing out is much easier than asking yourself, "What happened to make me feel this way? Was this the intent of the situation - to make me feel [insert emotion]?" It's really hard to take a look at things with clear eyes.

But even if you don't want to, which is completely up to you, just remember that "JUST BECAUSE YOU FEEL IT DOESN'T MEAN IT'S TRUE." It may be true to you but it's not to others. Their truths are different from yours and if you're not willing to look at things from their perspective, don't expect them to do just that for you.

I know it sounds like I'm lecturing or chastising. I'm not. I'm just sharing my thoughts as I continue to try to analyze myself and the world. It's crazy stuff. But it's so exciting to know that I have the ability to gain and keep control of my emotions and thoughts. It's just a matter of conscious effort and strict persistence.

PS Everyone needs a therapist. Whether you believe it or not, it's the truth. ;)

Friday, June 10, 2011

A new favorite expression



Don't believe me? Read on, my friend.

PS I got me a rad pair of spectacles :)

Thursday, June 9, 2011

It's 11:33pm

and I'm not in bed yet. This isn't good. I have been taking classes this summer (hence my lack of posting) and I have turned into a night owl. While I definitely prefer early mornings to late nights, I must say it's quite the experience to be wide awake at 11:30. I feel like I'm just getting started with my day. NOT. GOOD.

The classes I've been taking this summer (first block classes) have really stretched my thinking. I have LOVED it. My two favorite classes are my Educational Psychology class and a Multicultural class. My Ed Psych class is so intense. I have spent hours and hours and hours reading. While it's been a little rough getting used to reading so much I have loved what I've gained from it. We studied the development of the brain, individual motivation and self-efficacy and how these two factors directly influence an individuals success and/or failure. It's fascinating.

We also studied multiple theories on moral development, social development, cognitive development (going back to the brain and it's many functions), and many learning theories (behavioral vs cognitive vs social cognitive theory). It has been amazing!!!! I wouldn't mind taking some time to seriously study psychology. I think it would help me understand all the stupid people in the world. No, not stupid - just not fully developed. You see, now when I look at someone who just irritates the h-e-double-hockey-sticks out of me, I can analyze them based off of what little I've been exposed to. by analyzing them I am less likely going to desire to attack them (you better believe I have a certain individual...or two...in mind).

So, why do you care? Well, you should care because I'm more than likely going to analyze you at some point in time. Not because I think I've been empowered with all the tools necessary to accurately analyze, oh no. You see, I'm also analyzing myself: what motivates me and why? Am I extrinsically motivated or intrinsically motivated? Where do I suffer from low self-efficacy and why? How can I change this? And you better believe I'm trying to figure out how to better practice self-regulation. In order to understand these things in myself I need to be active in meta cognition.

hehe...this is really quite fun. I'll bet I'm annoying the h-e-double-hockey-sticks outta you right now (unless you know what I'm talking about - or what I think I understand I'm talking about).

I'm really enjoying this deeper level of thinking and discussion - authentic conversations - I'm all about it. I'm sick of the light feathery stuff. I like the nitty-gritty. But I'm practicing creating a safe environment so these authentic conversations can take place. We've had many dinner conversations about controversial topics (what the world has titled controversial). I am trying to analyze everything! It's awesome! I'm most likely not accurate a good majority of the time, but so long as it makes sense to me and keeps me from hating you, I'm happy. (by "you" I mean the individuals who aren't "fully developed" yet..you know the stupid people who seem to procreate faster than I can blink..)

My other class, Multicultural Instruction, has stretched me in other ways. We read about and discuss controversial subjects: racism, white privilege, sexism, homosexuality, religion, socioeconomic status, politics, etc. I don't feel my beliefs have changed, but my perspective and understanding has. This is where my deep conversations come into play. I like to SAFELY DISCUSS these issues. Not to say I'm right and you're wrong, or vise-verse, but to gain understanding and insight. I'm totally fine walking away from a conversation without agreeing. The idea of discussing isn't to convince or persuade (something a certain individual needs to read up on), it is to DISCUSS AND GAIN UNDERSTANDING. Imagine that. I can have my beliefs and thoughts on a subject and you can have yours AND WE CAN STILL BE FRIENDS. It's called tolerance, respect, and acceptance. Yup. tested, tried, and true. It can happen. I know this because it does happen.

Of all the many things I'm walking away with from my classes the one thing that rings true to me (and you don't have to agree with this) is: it's really unfortunate we have made certain subjects "inappropriate" or "controversial". That, in and of itself, is "inappropriate" and "controversial" to me. We should be able to talk about things openly and honestly. We should be able to trust one another to respect our views and beliefs, even if they don't agree.

I'm trying to do better because I don't want to be like those who claim to be one thing but in the end it's merely lip service. So, to work my way away from becoming like this, I'm going to pose two questions for you to think about. I want you to REALLY think about this...

1) What is "intelligence" (basically I'm asking you to define intelligence in your own words)?


2) Is "intelligence" measurable (through testing, observation, etc can you measure an individuals intelligence)?

These are not trick questions. In fact, I'm going to be explicit and tell you there is not a right/wrong answer (authentic conversations, Here we come!!)

I'd share more of my thoughts, which I know you're deeply invested in, but it's now 12:18 and I need to break this late-night bologna.

Peace and love, ya'll.