Failure to shield kids from profanity…

So I guess it occurred to me today as I was driving my two young children to school and heard my 4 year old daughter very clearly (and enthusiastically) singing along to AC/DC’s classic Highway to Hell… is that appropriate? In all honesty my first thought was to be quite impressed that she knew so many words and could belt it out in Brian Johnson fashion.  But then I wondered, how many times in a day I let a profane tickle past my nose and head straight for my kids?

It’s kinda tough these days..Disney movies put in more jokes aimed at the parents (yeah like Dusty crop-hopper getting ‘circumcised‘…really guys?), don’t get me started on what the plaster over latin american billboards and just heading out to a museum or aquarium you are bound to overhear some colorful thoughts being shared around you. I am sure they also hear me let something slip which is what probably impacts them the most. Like most parents, none of us try to poison their ears and we all try to keep our filters up and active but…sh** happens!

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Sew Sew Sew…Many failures (Part 1)

Inevitably this is how a ‘creative’ day gets started in my house.  After being awoken by outside forces (kids, alarm, husband, birds chirping, sun shining through the window…what have you), followed by tiny encounters that show life (and kids, husband, neighborhood birds…ect) have their own intensions for your time, talents and usefulness; a brilliant idea creeps into the head to make something. Oh yes… I’m gonna make some that I can control. I can create it in my own form, with my own skills, in my own method and I will have this lovely little product when I am done to show for my blood sweat and tears.  Sound familiar?

So I try to satisfy this deep urge for control and creativity by occasionally sewing (duct taping at times) my way through a project. A math & economics girl needs her outlets… But just to be clear, I am not one to post to a pinterest page and have perfect outcomes. My work is messy…It shouldn’t be photoed…It probably should’t be worn in public (but we do…bless our hearts)…It also probably shouldn’t be given as gifts (but I do sometimes…bless their hearts for still being my friends).  But it’s funny, it’s really hard to find a lot of sewing enthusiasts on the internet who admit their struggles on the path to their photo captured perfectionism.  Why don’t we capture the realistic attempts too?

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DIY: Hanging a Curtain Rod

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Oh, home projects. Don’t you just love scanning for ideas, seeing youtube how-to videos that show folks easily filming while doing projects with ease and perfection? Then going out to the home store and buying little bops and bits to follow suit and have your our ideal vision come to reality? Yeah, this isn’t really me either.

Don’t get me wrong, I like a nice house, I like sprucing it up for the holidays or company ect… but when it comes to utility projects like re-hanging a curtain rod I fall squarely into the failure category.  I’m not so sure why I find hanging things (like anything, even taping kids pictures to a wall) so challenging.  There is always a loose nail, un-even line (despite using a level), crooked thing going on when I’m involved.  Apparently in our first house I hung everything towards my eye-level and being 5’5″ apparently that looked weird to everyone else.  My husband can attest that at least 60% of the time after I hang something, all it takes is a door closing, a gentle breeze or a fly landing on it before it comes crashing down to shatter. It seems like everyone else has a trick I just don’t know.  Maybe y’all can enlighten me.

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Speaking Fluent Spanish-ishly

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Apart from moving far from family, friends and traditional opportunities to work, a challenge of moving abroad is learning the language and local customs…but it’s also one of the fun parts too if the stress doesn’t tweak us out.  But, how many times have we all heard, ‘You’re moving there! oh you will just pick it up in 6 months, no problem!’  Yeah, I got that nugget of encouragement (torture) a lot…A LOT from people before & after we moved here.

Before I go into why this challenge is such a spectacular lesson (like all life we must think of the shitty times as such or else we lose all motivation for trying the impossible). I can state some very valid reasons (excuses) why I have struggled…

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Halloween costumes…the pain and pressure.

So last night was Halloween! Hope y’all are enjoying a sugar (or bourbon) induced haze heading into work today after dealing with the throngs of kids (both young and awkwardly not so young) knocking on doors and kicking over lit up pumpkins.  It’s a lovely USA tradition, which I am glad is celebrated in pockets around Santiago, Chile as well. Even better as it is mostly Catholic denominated country, we have today, Nov. 1st, off of work & school for All Saints Day to sleep it off.  Yeah!

So in our family we have a tradition going all the way back to the 80’s of making our costumes…like when I stapled christmas tinsel to a hat to be a witch, or went hog-wild with puffy paint and pink lace gloves to be a punk version of Madonna (totally not Material Girl-style). We do this with our kids now.  This year my daughter was a flamingo  and my son was a puma (after some recent trips to deserts and rain forest around this end of the world).

Now we can all pinterest and find oodles of cute amazing hand-crafted ideas of costumes lovingly made up by ex-Martha Stewart scouts.  Ours honestly don’t look like that.  My kids costumes start to fall off and apart about 1 house down the block. It becomes more of a gross motor challenge to keep pants up, tails out, candy bag at the ready and head-piece from blocking all vision.  There are excessive safety pins involved, cut up old pieces of clothing, duct tape and glued on foam that add to the texture of the experience.

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Why I write about failures…

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There are many amazingly talented, successful people in the world today. They inspire us because their list of achievements, one right after another, make it all look easy.  That easiness makes others feel like success for them, too, is accessible.  We all want that. We all strive for efficient, but earned, success for our passions. But, sometimes we have kiss a lot of frogs before we find our prince charming.

Mine are the frog stories.  Personally, I learn a lot through failure. I am also a SLOW learner and very STUBBORN, so it often takes me a few failures to finally figure out I can force a square peg into a round hole.  I also work really hard, often too hard.  I have always been a bit of a busy body and pensive in my self-reflections, so I always try to do more.  I know, how ironic….a perfectionist failure devote.

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PUBLISHING FAIL (My first really half-assed attempt)

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So I am basically convinced that about half of all people think about writing a book at some point.  Maybe a third of 25-40 years old focus on writing children’s books which makes sense as raising kids definitely fills you with stories.. stories that rhyme, about joy, about the ridiculous, the exciting, the sad, the moralistic, the downright scary….ect.

So I squarely fell into this category around my early 30’s when I basically (and somewhat, well… mostly arrogantly) decided no books on the market (the entire vast publishing market that I clearly knew nothing about) fit my needs.  You like where this is going????

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