Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Simple pleasures

My favorite simple pleasures:

1. slowly eating a big bowl of ice cream while reading a novel
2. watching Kevin read to kids
3. sinking into bed after a long day
4. getting a phone call from a friend
5. nabbing the closest parking spot
6. singing a favorite song in church
7. watching my kids sleep
8. a clean kitchen sink
9. a cool breeze when I’m sweaty
10. the feel of my kids' chubby hands when we walk together.

Tuesday, September 5, 2006

A Chapter a Day

Kevin and our oldest have this cute little tradition going that I just have to share about. He reads a book to her slowly, a chapter every day, with no pictures, while she listens intently until they're done. It takes them two or three weeks. Their first book was The Lion, Witch, and Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis, and they just finished Charlie and the Chocolate Factory last week. After each one, they celebrated by watching the dvd. We loved the movie version of The Lion, Witch, and Wardrobe, but the Willy Wonka movie with Johnny Depp was just strange. Guess I'm not a big fan of Tim Burton, and the movie had his stamp all over it. This next book they're going through doesn't have a movie, but it's a goodie anyway. It's a Ramona book by Beverly Cleary. After that, maybe Charlotte's Web. It has become a daily ritual: "Daddy, can you read me another chapter?" Kevin can never resist, and I love the sound and sight of them snuggled together reading. I'm hoping that the other kids will enjoy this too when they get older, even if it means Kevin reading the same books at least four times out loud.

It's times like these that I know I really lucked out in getting a great father for my kids. Not that I was thinking of that 13 years ago when we started dating. When you're that young, you're not thinking about parenthood. Thankfully, God knew what He was doing. He saw what I couldn't see 13 years and more into the future: that my kids would be getting the best possible dad in the world.

Monday, September 4, 2006

Marital spat

Today was a bad day because Kevin and I had a major argument. I know I'm not supposed to talk about these things. But tonight, it's bugging me that nobody talks about these things. When I was younger, like in high school and college, my girlfriends shared all kinds of stuff with me, like what kissing was like, and why they fought with their boyfriends. And then, once they got married, that was it, no more intimate discussions. All of a sudden, it was about protecting the husband, making him look good, which certainly meant no more talking about marital squabbles and sex. Wouldn't want to present him as a jerk in any way, I guess.

I got over this hangup awhile ago, while we were living with my parents. It was hard hiding Kevin's flaws while we all lived together. Besides, it totally gave him the upper hand, because all he had to do was act up a tiny bit in front of others, and I would give in. Eventually, I got sick of this and realized so what if people knew Kevin had jerkish tendencies. He was my husband, we were going to stick together, and tough luck if they didn't approve. After that, whenever he tried to get to me by acting up in front of others, I would just yell at him, "You want to do this right now?! Good, let's do it!" So that's no longer a problem.

I'm embarrrassed to go into the details of why we squabbled today because I don't want to look bad, but of course it started small and then got blown way out of proportion. I just can't believe one person has so much influence and power over me, that one person can determine whether I laugh or cry, whether I'm happy or depressed, that I can feel utterly worthless just from one thing he says. It sounds dysfunctional, but I think it must be normal, because we're pretty normal in general. Everybody's always waxing on about the wonders of love and marriage. Nobody ever tells you how sometimes it totally stinks to depend so much on one person and be so helpless.

We've made up. And we don't have major blow-outs like this very often. It seems to be somewhat cyclical. Sometimes, after a calm period, Kevin will say that it's time for another major spat. So after today, I guess we're good for another few months.