Complaining Adds Up

money

Complaining became a big problem in our house when . . . well, since I moved into it.

But, I tried to resolve the issue with the Complaint Free World Bracelet. Which brought to light the fact that nearly every word out of my mouth is a complaint. Certainly nearly every blog is somehow a complaint. We’re too fat. TV and movies are too sexual and violent. Disney Princess Movies aren’t even written by any women – at all, like not even one woman on the writing staff. Sexual predators are stalking children online. Kate Moss must have malfunctioning taste buds. I want to publish a book, but I’m to broke and scared what you’ll think and say about it. Incessant complaining, really. I’m working on it. God is working on it for me.

Do you know what the most annoying thing you can do to a habitual complainer like myself is?

Get a 7- or 8-year-old to follow them around incessantly complaining. For about a year-and-a-half.

I decided to Woman Up and Parent. Oh the hypocrisy of complaining about her complaining was bothering me, sure.

But, hey! I’m the Mom and she’s the kid and seriously, I’m can’t stand to listen to it anymore. So here’s the deal, I told her,

“For every complaint, you’re giving me a quarter. Every time you complain you’re ruining your own life a little. Also, you’re ruining mine. ”

In the first 24 hours she paid me $10.25. That’s over 40 complaints in 24 hrs. and I let a few slide because they were legitimate things I needed to know like Mommy, I stepped on a thumb tack yesterday and now my foot is throbbing and red.

I told her she can earn the money back by not complaining for one single day.

Any better ideas? All are welcome.

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Greeley, Colorado or Bust 2010!

It’s so funny that yesterday  I finally “went public” about moving to Atlanta, Georgia.

Because yesterday my husband’s company changed their minds.

Instead, we’re headed to Greeley, Colorado where the company who purchased my husband’s company is headquartered.  

We could not be more thrilled.

This will put us roughly half-way between our families.  I see my siblings about once a year, my parents twice. I miss them. This will put us “three-day weekend distance” away. Just a hop over the Rocky Mountains and we’re home.

Ditto his parents and siblings. Just a jaunt through the plains and we’re home.

Aside from the familial conveniences, I am thrilled about the AIR. The arid, dry, breathable air and the lushious, comfortable summers. The outdoors. The hiking. The air, did I mention the air?

I miss The West. It’s been a decade since I’ve lived in The West. But, I do miss the . . . how should I put this? The culture? The thinking? The openness? The West-ness? The pyschic wavelength? The spiritual frequency? The attitude? The healthy lifestyle? The fresh air?

For several years, I’ve been attracting “the perfect city in The West for us” and telling my husband, “Go West, Paradise is there. You’ll have all that you can eat, with milk and honey over there. . .” Yes, I sing Natalie Merchant.

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Atlanta or Bust 2010

Greatroom website

My husband is being transferred to Atlanta, Georgia and its time to sell our house. The house I LOVE. The house that makes me feel abundant in all the right ways and none of the wrong ways. The house I attracted with all my heart and Law of Attraction powers. Now, I have to let go of my house and attract another one. In another city. It’s harder than I thought it would be. As is the letting go of people like my awesome book club, the quiet solitude of my life, my SAHM flexibility, the free babysitters and the trustworthy and loving woman I pay for special occasions. Ouch, that’s a little tender.

I like change, usually. I think. At least I used to.

But, this is going to be quite a lot of change all at once.

I’m probably going to have to get a job. I might be changing entire careers. It’s a big vast unknown. Which is exciting. And scary.

Hey if you’re in Atlanta and you think I’d be perfect for your organization, drop me an email?

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Back to Routine

Today’s the first day of a new school year. Ainsley is starting 2nd grade. Zack is in pre-school on Tuesdays and Thursdays. So, I get a lot of one-on-one time with Zack. And a little time to work uninterrupted.

I decided I should just create the habits I want to have for the whole school year right out of the gate. I got up at 6 am and worked out. Got Ainsley ready, fed her a healthy breakfast, and WALKED her to school. It actually felt really good.

It’s really only about 4 blocks, though across a major highway. In my day, she would have just walked with the pack of other children also going to that school and there would have been safety in numbers. Now, everyone drives their kids in their big SUVs regardless how close they live. I’m opposed to this, but trying to accept it as the reality.

This year the school is trying something new. Not only are they feeding all the poor and rich kids breakfast, but they are doing it right in the classroom at their desks. The middle kids, like mine, who won’t add $3 to their child’s daily food allowance just get to watch the other kids eat. Or bring a granola bar. Whatever. Previously, I had to deal with, Can I have a lunch tray today? NO. every day of the year. Now I get, Can I have breakfast today? No. Can I have a tray? No.

I’m trying to to be pissed off about this. I’m sure it’s really best thing the school can do. Really. I mean, parents can’t be expected to get up and tell their kids to make a bowl of cereal or oatmeal. Wait. I do. But, whatever. I’m just grateful I can afford to feed my kid healthy, nutritious food at home. Also trying to come to a state of peaceful acceptance about this.

It’s going to be a great year. I’m torn between being wistful about a very good summer gone by and wistful about the year ahead. We’re still doing it with one car. Which can be overwhelming if I think about it. But, if I just deal with the moment, the day, the tasks right in front of us, it’s fine. Soon, Jeremy will be driving his dream car: a Jeep Wrangler. I’ll have total control of my red minivan. Soon.

I signed up to be a substitute teacher this year. We’ll see how that goes.

For now,, I’m creating good habits – getting my work-out in before everyone wakes up, creating space to do yoga on Tuesdays and Thursdays, making sure everyone gets to where they need to go with one car, working on my book proposal for the book I wrote this year, The Girl Revolution.

How’d your first day of school go? Goals for the year?

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Born Mother

ainsleyswim

What I’ve noticed about Ainsley, her 7-year-old self, is that she’s a leader, teacher, nurturer, caretaker. She’s a born mother.  (She takes after me.)

Zack wouldn’t take swim lessons alone (though he’s scarily unafraid of the water), so Ainsley basically taught him.

ainsleyella

She also just LOVES to take care of her cousins. She’s the oldest on my side and she loves to boss, teach, guide. lead and snuggle the younger ones.

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