Michele Minehart

words & yoga

Month: August 2010 (page 1 of 3)

little old lady

Allow me to compose the top reasons you may or may not have confused me with your grandma or elderly neighbor yesterday:
1. I made peach jam.
2. Then I canned to preserve it for the winter.
3. I completed one crotchet project and started another with giddy determination. (My pride at the V-stitch is sinful and probably very alarming for my sub-30-year-old friends).
4. I spent the evening at church (even more so: at a MEETING, talking about “kids these days”)
5. I went to Meijer at 9am. Did you know that the average shoppers age in Meijer at 9am on a Thursday falls in the Golden Buckeye bracket?
6. I had coupons at the checkout. 
7. Thanks to this venture out, I felt that my day’s calendar was pretty much full. 
8. I spoke to a man about his hip replacement. And asked for details.
9. I plotted in my mind – multiple times – how to be “adopted” by a grandmother that can knit. I found some sweater patterns on Ravelry that I feel Miss M simply MUST have. 

After having completed my first week of staying home with the kids most days (thanks, mom for letting me work on Tuesdays), so far I’m not crazy. Well, any crazier.  I’ve quite enjoyed working on tasks that I’ve not had the opportunity in the past. I make myself keep up with the dishes (otherwise I would bake us into a fatty coma all the live long day), the laundry is… on par… and I’m 3 for 3 in the shower column.

Making this an even better situation: my friend KC called from work yesterday to tell me they’d like me to work on an admin project that is much more similar to my old work. Oh, heavenly day. I realized that putting in for evening hours and only at the front of the week would likely limit me to phone interviews, but after several hours of speaking with scientists and people with “director” in their title (that say phrases like “well, I’m at $240k base right now, but I’d be willing to talk if total comp was anticipated at over $300), I come home quite exhausted. I find it hard to be so nice to such rich and smart people. So this project is welcome news.

On top of that, I started in on some ad work again with a friend. He had me writing commercials a while back, but after I ramped up at the “real job” I couldn’t squeeze it in. But with the schedule as-is, I’m able to make contact with clients and write scripts during naptimes, which works great for him and me. It’s an hour here and there, but helps to fill in my gaps (and put a little fun money in my pocket).

To put the icing on the cake, I actually feel much freer to be able to contribute at church the way I’ve wished I could. I feel like I’d dropped the ball – so many good intentions, no follow through because I was scrounging for time to get things completed. But now I’m able to feel like my Sunday evenings can belong to the youth, being as I have so much other time during the week to spend with the fam.

However, let me not talk myself into misery. Next week I begin working in the evenings, so there could be a whole new loop thrown in. But there’s a bit of joy that I’m finding in not really knowing what the day will hold. First things first: I need to complete my only assignment of yesterday that I did not complete. Fantasy football – Girls club – here I come!

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And the Bookie goes to…

As I was commenting on a FB friend’s status update, I decided that if Facebook were to have its own version of the Dundee awards, he could be a contender in multiple categories. Which inspired me to think… what would the awards be? And who would win them? Ah, let the games commence.

Humor in the mundane
Bob B. Most recent status: Things must be going well for the company.. We just got urinal mints in the men’s room at work..

Strongest political statement
Lindsay L. Always good for a pro-Obama video. Because the majority of my fb friends are republican, I must say it’s a breath of fresh air.

Best spiritual uplift
Mary K. I love the current translation she’s been using.

Consistency in overstretching onself’s limits and then complaining about it
Well, I can’t say the name! But if you’re friends with her, you know.

Most helpful information concerning cinematic events:
Kenny M. Since I rarely watch movies, the posts are quite helpful in sounding educated and involved.

Best wisher of a good day:
Barb W. Always chipper, even at 7am. Good morning, Hardin county!

Status-turned-forum of discussion:
Anna G, as evidenced by how many comments she gets over a consistent basis. In her acceptance speech she needs to thank Twitter for feeding into her Fb, I’m sure. And all those little people she’s tagged along the way.

Photography uploads :
(professional category) Danielle D. Her speed at updates kicked her over the edge as a winner.
(personal category): Brian W. He earned bonus points for creativity in locale.

Twitter Dee and Twitter Dum Award(Consistently updates to the same status, not out of accident but because they’re always together):
Brian W and Doctor Ryan. The ipad purchase made you the clear winners.

Makes me hungriest:
Ashley M. I think she should start taking pictures and uploading the recipes to become a foodie blogger.

Best Musical performance in a status update (ie, quoting lyrics):
Lacy D. She’d also be a front runner in the “makes me feel old because I don’t know what that song is” category.

Best source of news for someone who doesn’t get out much:
Tony F. Mostly in regards to sports news, but in general after reading his posts I feel like I can contribute to a conversation. Or crack a joke.

Motivator Award (most likely to update that she just worked out and thus driving me to reach for another cookie)
Vura. That girl is always working out! Or perhaps FB is a reward mechanism to get her to workout. That could be a winning strategy for this girl.

Lead supporting role: best commenter on a status
Rebecca B. She is on top of it when wishing happy birthdays.

Randomness award:
Nate Johnson. Half the time I have no idea what he’s talking about (fig newtons?), but 90% of the time I still laugh.

Druken dial updates (or a large number of them involve drinking)
Brad W. I’m not sure there were any close competitors in this category.

Overall Worst Facebooker Award:
Kristy R. Quitter.

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All grown up

While I did take spring quarter of my senior year to play and not take classes, I mostly saw it as a reward for getting all my coursework done in a prompt and efficient manner. However, most of those 10 weeks were spent either shredding paperwork (I worked for a lawyer very, very part time) or looking for jobs. While I schlepped through March, April and May, I knew that come June I needed to have something in place for “next steps.” Granted, returning home was an option – I did so immediately following graduation – but it took me no time at all to get the apartment after securing my first job. I am very grateful for the hospitality the ‘rents showed, but I was also ready to let those wings do a bit of flapping. Since then my parentals have helped me out of a jam or two and, in general are excellent supporting roles in my life.

The NY times will be releasing a piece over the weekend about the elongation of the formative years, that space of time between child’s life and adulthood. That gap between tree houses and home mortgages. Now, this is something that youth directors have been talking about for years (literally. I think I first heard it at a YS in 2006 and I’m NEVER that on top of things), the idea that HS or even college graduation isn’t any longer the step off point into adulthood. In my father’s day, at 18 years old you were heading to college, joining the military or getting a job. Now, very few 20-somethings are faced with sink or swim dilemmas. And yes, this does include my age bracket – I did, after all, marry a boomerang kid. 

So the conversation I had recently with a friend of my father’s jumped out at me with this background in place. K would be entering his sophomore year in college but has opted not to return this fall – he is itching to enlist in the military. And not just any military – the jump-out-of-planes, deployed-ASAP Marines military. Needless to say, his parents are less than thrilled.

I say this ignoring the political context; I (and K’s parents) have the utmost respect for those entering the military, those sacrificing so much for the freedoms we enjoy. K’s parents don’t believe they are “above” those parents who have someone on the front lines. But that doesn’t’ mean they’re rushing him to the recruiter’s office. This is a very mature decision to make and K’s parents worry that he doesn’t truly understand what it means when he signs on the dotted line.

So my questions. Is K mature enough to make such a decision? He’s lived a pretty cushy life, his parents have provided him with numerous amenities growing up, he lives a very safely with few things that challenge him. He’s a bright kid. But coasting through schoolwork and understanding the practical meaning of life and death aren’t necessarily on the same page.

And then: if K isn’t mature enough to make such a decision – if he really doesn’t “get it”, what he’s signing up for – then who’s fault is that? And I’m not going to take the easy route and say it’s his folks. I don’t think they’ve done much out of the norm in the situation. And they haven’t taken this direction in a vacuum. Our society has its ways of influencing and convincing us of what “normal” is.

I hope that, no matter what decision K comes to, he is safe where ever he might go. I hope that he leans on wisdom beyond himself and his peers when he weighs his options. I pray that the appeal of excitement, when compared to the stack of textbooks, isn’t the only voice he hears.

But I also hope that he doesn’t simply do what he’s told. I hope this decision isn’t yet another example the sociologists might cite in the epidemic of kids who don’t seem to grow up. I hope this is another step toward independence, understanding himself, and living the best possible version of himself.

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