Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Daily Affirmation with Stuart Smalley

Spring in Georgia was ushered in with two days of freeze warnings, wind advisories, and a weekend of thunderstorms. While some people may have used the ample time inside to tackle long needed home projects, I used the time for mental health. In other words, I lay around, read books and watched TV. The girls made a huge fort in the living room. When big sister and little sister punked out on plans to spend the night in the fort, the teary eyed six year old and Daddy had their own fort slumber party.

My eleven year old (G) used the weekend to write up positive affirmations on post-it notes all over the house.  All of them say nice things, like "You are a smart cookie!". Some of them are unintentionally hilarious. One posted on our bathroom mirror says the images we see are "100% loved by your daughters." Sweet when looking in the mirror. When getting out of the shower directly across from said mirror- a little creepy. One of my favorites is this one posted on a mirror in my bedroom:

She meant it is a really lovely way, but it cracked me up. It reminded me of the old Stuart Smalley skits from "Saturday Night Live". It starts off nice and positive then seems to go right off the rails. G had the best intentions to uplift us. Maybe it made me laugh in a way she didn't intend, but it definitely uplifted my spirits. I'm glad I have G to help me with my "stinkin' thinkin'". Because I am good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggone it, people like me!  

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Working 9 to 5

Well, technically I work 9:00 to 5:30, but you DO NOT correct Dolly. She's petite, but that kitty has claws.  This time of year starts the busiest stretch in my job. The exciting, fast paced world of grants management never ends, I tell ya. One way I relax from all this stress is by reading blogs every morning. Numerous blogs. Maybe more than fifty. Is fifty plus a day a lot? I'm hoping that is the norm. I just consolidated all my blogs into Feedly so at least I am now going to only one place for most of my blog reading.

When you start actively trying to be a happier person, you really notice the Debbie Downers out there. And apparently, Debbie loves commenting on the web. Case in point: the Apartment Therapy website has some of the meanest comments I have seen. Let's say someone submits "Before & After" pictures of a chair they recovered. Maybe the fabric isn't your taste or dark cherry wood isn't the way you roll. Fine. But do you really have to post a comment saying, "This is the most hideous thing I have ever seen. I wouldn't let my dog barf on that chair. You should be slapped in the face with attractive fabric so maybe some good taste will rub off on your ugly face"? Okay, perhaps I took a little poetic license but I am pretty close. If you want to feel better about yourself, or alternatively lose hope for the future of our world, read the comments under any random article on any news website. Political or entertainment articles are a great place to start this experiment. Maybe the anonymity of these places lends itself to this negativity, but it can easily start seeping in to my own attitude if I allow it.

You probably work with a Debbie Downer of some sort, the person you can count on in meetings to argue why something will never work. Usually because they tried it twelve years ago and it didn't work then. I have been that Debbie before, but Debbie does not get things done. Debbie doesn't encourage co-workers or help improve the office. Over time, most people start avoiding Debbie because she is so freaking annoying. I have received a lot of work questions over the last week that give me pause. Sample question (for reals): "This says Form ABC is required. Do I have to submit it?" Hmm, is a required form required? Negative Carrie, the Debbie Carrie, might say something less than polite. Happy, delightful Carrie just smiles and types out, "Yes, yes it is."

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Girls Just Want to Have Fun!

The hubs is completing the final week of a three week training in Texas. Since the girls and I would be on our own for half of the month, I thought a great resolution for March would be to love and appreciate my girls. All that time together could give lots of opportunities to bond.  That's okay- I'll wait for you to stop laughing.

I will give the disclaimer that I know three weeks is nothing compared to single parents, military families, etc. However, hubs and I tackle parent duties pretty equally. He drops all of them off to school/daycare every day and while I don't get to sleep in late, I do get to either stay in pj's makeup free or get some exercise after they all leave until my work day begins. Being the only parent to get them up, dressed, fed, dropped off, picked up, fed again, supervise homework, give baths and tuck in bed starts to wear thin after a week or so. While I don't think I am a big meanie mom, I do have a tendency to yell when angry or particularly frustrated. This was definitely something I wanted to improve on, and what better way to overcome it than experience one of the most (for me) stressful parenting situations?

It has turned out to be surprisingly smooth sailing. Yes, I am very happy to tuck kids in and retreat to my room at night. Yes, the girls argue and throw fits and rat each other out. Yes, I have felt annoyed and frustrated numerous times during the last three weeks. However, since I have been looking for the good it hasn't been that hard to find. My eleven year old has really stepped up and been exceedingly helpful. She has made her sisters breakfast most mornings without being asked and has offered to help me with lots of things. She would prefer to play on her tablet most days, but she genuinely looks for ways to help. The younger girls are eager to pursue fun at every chance. I don't feel like I have time for fun when there are endless chores to be done. They have helped me embrace fun for the sake of fun. Once I jump in, I really do enjoy watching them play or color or give my pretend food order to my six year old "server" dozens of times. They are the silliest girls and I would have missed a lot of silly memories if I had not been looking. I would have missed the latest hair trend they invented, the quadruple pony tail style. I would have missed a kid made dinner and show presented by the "Mitchell Family Dance Company". Great memories and reminders that I have really great kids. Besides, it is pretty fun to snuggle in bed, watch a movie and share Girl Scout cookies with those cuties.  : )

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Have a Laugh

I intended to post this last week as "Funny Friday", but I suppose now it will be "Tickled Tuesday"? Oh, that silly procrastination. Since last month's resolution was an epic fail, I am working on it again for March in addition to a new goal (I'll share later).

I've spent a lot of time over the last few weeks laughing my butt off watching "The Office" from the beginning on Netflix. So many hilarious things I forgot about: Michael burning his foot on a George Foreman grill, "Prison Mike", everything about Dwight. I watched the "Prison Mike" scene at least five times and laughed until I cried.

This clip of Tom Hanks on "Toddlers & Tiaras" is several years old, but I just saw it for the first time. So funny! I love Tom Hanks and this just makes him even funnier.

There are a million "Harlem Shake" videos out there, but this one from the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok is my favorite. Not so much for awesomeness, but for the questions it raises. How many takes were required for this? Who said, "Yes, this is wonderful use of time and money."  Why is someone dressed Captain America doing upside down push-ups? Weird. (On a side note, dear America, please stop making "Harlem Shake" videos. They are pretty much all the same and not that funny.)

Any funny movies/shows/videos you recommend?