Last week we celebrated our good friend Caity’s 30th birthday. Lauri had made some ridiculous promise that she would dress up like a clown if Caity would let us throw this party for her. And I tagged on that I would wear my prom dress. I had no idea that Lauri would call me two hours before the start of the party and tell me that she hoped I had my prom dress ready, because she was at Party City getting the clown stuff. I hadn’t put that dress on since 1990, when I wore it to my senior prom with my seventeen-year-old, cutie-face boyfriend named Chris Linebarger. I had a moment of panic when Lauri called me, thinking there was no way that thing would zip up and I would have to break my promise. But lo and behold, it zipped. I can’t say I was comfortable in it. I mean, when I dropped something, I had to ask one of my children to pick it up and I literally couldn’t sit down for hours, but it zipped! But this isn’t about me, is it? It’s all about Caity, who’s now thirty. And about how much I never realized, when choosing paint colors for my walls, what great backdrops they were going to make in future pictures of future parties for friends turning thirty. And I sure am surrounded by lots of cute faces in my life.

Here’s to you, friend. Thirty is so much better than seventeen. May it be a wonderful decade for you…


















Excess Knowledge

I know too much stuff.

I know that I need to buy more hangers next time I go to Target because every time I do laundry, I can never hang up all of our clothes.

I know that we need to eat a healthy, vitamin-rich, low-fat diet for physical health and a flavor-rich, fried-in-grease, dessert-filled diet for fun health and together-times and I am constantly seeking that balance in our meals.

I know everything about seasons one through two and a half of Smallville. Only four and a half more seasons to go. (And I know that I love Lex Luthor, possibly more than I love Clark Kent – is that a problem?)

I know that it’s worth the expense to me to buy organic milk and cage free brown eggs and fair trade coffee for our family.

I know that I’ve stayed up too late watching Olympics every night this week and I also know way more than I should know about Michael Phelps’ body dimensions.

I know about things like church history and politics and theology and philosophy and I know that the subjects tumble around in my head consistently and come up in conversation frequently and lead to a working out of my salvation with fear and trembling on a daily basis.

I know that kids are dying of AIDS, working in sweatshops, being sold as sex slaves, being exploited, abused, neglected and otherwise tortured in many places around the world and maybe even just down the street every day, every day, every day.

I know that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God, and is redeeming/has redeemed/will redeem all of this.


I think because I know so much stuff, there’s just not room in there to add much more. Unfortunately, almost all the things I don’t know start with the word “Mom.” For example:

“Mom, when are you going to take me buy a binder for school?”

Um…..I don’t know.

“Mom, can we ride our bikes to school this year?”

Too much to consider in that question. Can’t think about it now. Must put it off for later.

“Mom, can I make cookies and can I cut up this blanket Grandma made me to make carpets for my dolls and can Janey stay the night and then in the morning can we all go over to Britni’s and can her grandpa take us to a movie and then can her uncle take us water-skiing and the next day can I go to Six Flags with Shelby and can I try out for American Idol when I’m sixteen?”


Is it possible to get rid of knowledge to make room for wisdom?

Monster Mom

Monster Mom was here today
She really got things hoppin’
She picked up Fun Mom by the neck
And threw her on her noggin

With Fun Mom gone, the kids were doomed
They knew it in a moment
“You’ve smiled your last smile,” she roared
“Let’s get those rears in motion!”

See, Fun Mom, she just lets things be
No sense in going crazy
It’s easier to say “Who cares?”
And let them all be lazy

And then the house, it looks like crap
And no good meals get made
And everyone stays up too late
Which only paves the way…..

For Monster Mom to barrel in
In search of peace and order
And when it’s nowhere to be found
Well, that’s when things get harder

For she’ll chew you up and spit you out
She’ll ride you ‘til you’re broken
She’ll bring some sense of order back
With nary a fun word spoken

And when she’s gone, and all is still
The kids will solemnly vow
To keep this place up, as they whisper this prayer:
“Oh Fun Mom, where art thou?”

What Would We Do, Baby

We’ve been watching Family Ties with the family. The fourth season just came out on DVD. Best season ever of any show. Ever. I remember watching it in eighth grade, while Alex P. Keaton broke my heart in two, week after week, with his cute little smile that I was sure was meant just for me. I could swear that his eyes had the ability to pierce the depths of my soul right through that TV screen.

My oldest daughter is about to start eighth grade in a week and a half. I don’t know if this is appropriate or not, but I’ve started preparing myself for her graduation from high school. Her best friend’s brother graduated this year and is leaving for college in a couple weeks, all the way across the country, leaving her best friend to be the only child left at home. I’m having a very hard time absorbing this reality. In fact, it’s making me very, very sad for her parents. And I’m not sure how it will affect me to have my eldest grow up and leave home like that. And then the one after that. And the one after that. I can’t help but feel like I’ll be left there wondering what in the heck it was all about. All those years. Gone in a moment. So I’m preparing myself now. I’m looking at Callie, sitting there on the couch, laughing along with me at Alex and Mallory and I’m getting tears in my eyes thinking about how much I’m going to miss her, five years from now. And I’m trying to imagine what kind of a hole it will leave in our household when she leaves. And it’s making me very, very sad. It’s just so weird how these little human beings emerge from our own being and yet, they’re never really ours.

I think I’m going to take a break from my Olympic addiction tonight (and all of the million things floating through my brain) and find a movie to rent on iTunes. I want a good one that will make me cry. Tomorrow, I’ll think more about all that needs to be done before school starts.

I guess Alex P. Keaton is still breaking my heart.