Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Rediscovering Me -- A Walking Cliche or Victim of Movie Makers?

So, tonight for date night, my husband and I went to see "Eat. Love. Pray." I know, I'm a lucky woman, and for the record, my husband noted that he was only one of two guys in the theater (let it be known that due to Tropical Storm Hermine there was probably only 14 people total).

As I watched the show, I related to the character and her plight for something more. To some extent her actual goals were different, but when we are ultimately looking to achieve or find the one thing we haven't yet, the obstacle course can appear the same.

So, I'll be honest, between this movie, "Julie and Julia" and say "Under the Tuscan Sun," I've been recently insighted to re-evaluate myself. In this movie, there's a lot to do with inner peace (and food!), in Julie and Julia I completely related to the lunch scene where all the friends sat around at their Cobb Salad lunch and went on and on about all their fantastic career accomplishments, and well, under the Tuscan Sun spoke to my underlying wish to just do whatever because I can! (Ha! If it were that easy!)

And then, I find myself thinking that my kids are getting older and I'm reaquainting myself with thoughts of career and change . .and well, . .something! I just can't seem to really pinpoint what that SOMETHING is!

As we drove home this evening, I told my husband that I felt like a walking cliche. I'm not young anymore and I'm reevaluating my life. Is it truly some sense inside me that yearns for more meaning to my life or is it simply an idea that movie makers have plunked inside my head? I mean, seriously. I think it could be either . . .

I've got a nice life that features a wonderful family, lots of fantastic friends, and a house that's big enough in a neighborhood that's comfortable, and a job that offers great coworkers and a decent paycheck. Bottom line, I don't really NEED anything more at this point and to strive to gain more might actually reduce the level of my happiness in all the above areas. So, what is it I'm looking for?

Unlike, most of these blogs, I suppose this one won't end with a statement or theme. I think this one will just end with a three-part question, "What is it that we all strivve for? How do we define success? and Is what you've got now something you're willing to sacrifice to reach that definition?

Feel free to share your parent perspective on this one. I invite and encourage your feedback.

Family Time -- Doo You Walk Down Memory Lane with Your Kids?

When I was a kid, my "most favorite" cartoon was Scooby-Doo. Apparently my husband felt the same way about the show. Now, we proudly tell our kids "I have seen every Scooby-Doo movie or show ever made."

When we had our first child, we looked for movies we could buy or rent. What did we end up buying and recording like crazy? You guessed it, Scooby-Doo flicks.

One of my son's first scary shows was "Scooby Doo" the movie, featuring Scrappy Doo (who by the way annoyed the heck out of them too -- I always thought that was a bad phase in the series).

Well now, guess what? They've got a new Scooby-Doo show on Cartoon Network, "Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated." My kids couldn't wait to tell me about it as they know I'm just addicted to that crazy, mystery-solving, talking dog. What's not to love.

We found it on our DVR guide and set it to record every week. On an evening when we can all sit down together (no karate, gymnastics or date night) and enjoy some microwave popcorn, we pull it up and have a full 30-minutes of family fun.

I don't know what it is, but it's just so special to have the opportunity to share something you loved as a kid with YOUR kids. If you haven't seen this one yet, I encourage you to do so. It's got an interesting new slant to it -- a Mr. E that points the "meddling kids" in unexpected directions, a new type of relationship between Velma and Shaggy AND a mystery to solve about Mystery, Inc that has yet to be fully revealed.

Give it a shot. And while you're driving your kids down Memory Lane, you might also consider sharing some other old favorites of your days of "yore." We had a great time renting all the old Indiana Jones movies and also the 3-part Back To The Future saga. (After just having watched this with the kids, I loved that the Statesman published an article on upcoming fashion and saw Michael J Fox's vest look (you know, the one where the people in the past kept asking him why he was wearing a life preserver) is apparently coming back in style -- I kid you not!!!)

Doo-ing time with the kids is fun for everyone especially when it's Scooby Dooby Doo!!! ( . . ..and not Scrappy too.) Use that parent perspective to take a new look at an old concept and love every minute of it!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Rediscovering Me -- Do Something for YOU, Feel Good About Yourself

Wow! So, today I am proud of myself. I left with the kids this morning on our daily walk to school (1 mile there and 1 mile back) and said to myself, "Today I'll skip on my attempts at jogging because my knee is sore for no reason."

We packed up our lunches, grabbed backpacks and were off. As with every morning, we had conversations about everything from their favorite video game, to their homework to "why can't we wear flip flops again?" I enjoy this time and it's a great way for me to ensure that they get some sort of physical activity every day. Their reward for doing so comes in the form of dessert without having to hop on the treadmill.

Anyway, as I watched them cross the walk to the school and then turned around to head back, I noticed that my knee wasn't really twinging anymore. "Nah . . .I should be safe and just stick to walking today," I thought.

Quick background: Back in April (about 4 months ago) I went on Nutrisystem and after two months, lost 23 lbs!!! So, feeling healthy again is pretty new and very important. I have to say, it doesn't hurt when your husband tells you several time daily that "You're looking hot, babe." Seriously, he SAYS that!

That's a long way from where I was before I decided it was time to make a change. I know we all do it. Especially as a parent, between work, kids, house chores, volunteering and just life itself, you forget about "you." And, before you know it, you have no time to yourself, no time to think about eating or what you should eat -- it's just about grabbing something between point A and point B. Before you know it, you're snoozing in bed and have trouble remembering how you got there. So, I had that "Aha! moment" that you always hear about and I'm still working on it now.

So, back to my story. After walking the kids and while listening to Nickelback on my mp3, I got to the park. This is where I usually kick into one of my tiny blips of jogging inspiration. I thought, "Should I?"

I did . .thinking that it would just be a quick burst and that would be enough. And then I got to the spot where I planned on exiting and stopping and there was a man there with his dog. So, I made a quick change and went further into the park, still jogging and then, before I knew it, I was still jogging and I wasn't gasping for air or thinking about the second that I would stop. And, I kept jogging right across the street and for another long stretch.

OK OK OK . . .I know this probably isn't that impressive for many of the athletic people out there. For the record, this is coming from someone who has never been big on athletics, at least on land (I did Swim Team as a kid for many years). But, anyway, when I did stop. Man, I just felt SO good, so proud of myself. I'm old now and wow . .I may be getting in shape. I LOVE it!

So, there it is. I know it's a small thing, and yet it isn't. It made me smile and feel good about myself. And you know what? That really does matter.

Morale of the day: Get out there and inspire yourself (but don't hurt yourself doing it). Do something for YOU!

Have a great one!!