Monday, January 30, 2012

Teaching Good Enough

Sometimes, I just need arts and crafts time.  It feels good to do something with my hands, that's not on the computer, and be able to see the finished project.

I bought a heart punch, Valentines Day themed scrapbook paper, and scrapbook adhesive squares and Daulton and I got to work.  My inspiration came from this post on the Flower Patch Farmgirl and then I saved it to Pinterest.  Check out my post on Beyond The Defaults for more information on Pinterest and let me know if you want an invitation.

Daulton was a very good helper and after I showed him how to work the hole punch, he got right to work.  He only took a few breaks to watch iCarly and later to play Wipeout on the Xbox Kinect (holy crap am I sore from playing that game!).

Once we had about 500 hearts punched out (I had no idea we would have 500 hearts until we had 500 hearts punched out), we started assembling the 3-dimensional hearts and attaching them to string.  Daulton watched me put a few together and then decided he was going to try it.

And then he asked me, "Hey Ab, do they have to be perfect?".

I know he was only talking about putting together a Valentines Day craft, but it felt like one of those life lesson moments.  And after a quick glance at Matt, I could see he felt the same way.

So I told him, "Nope, they don't need to be perfect.  They just need to be good enough.  Do you know what that means?"

He said he didn't so we both explained that perfect doesn't exist but its important to always try to do your best.  Matt said it best when he said, "Do you know the difference between good enough and perfect?  Its in your head."

It was the confirmation he needed that I wasn't expecting perfection and we cruised through the rest of the assembly and he helped me hang them around the house.

Were all the hearts perfect?  No, far from it and I had just as many imperfect hearts as he did but that didn't matter because the project turned out great.  It was a fun project for us to do together and it satisfied my need for arts and crafts time.  And for being such a good helper, he got some heart surprises hanging outside of his door this morning.

Why yes, that is a basket of balls on my fireplace.  They say to work with what you've got and that's what we've got lying around everywhere.  It keeps them contained and easily accessible, everyone wins.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Happy 5th Birthday Dixie!

Today is Dixie's 5th birthday.  Technically, its the day we celebrate Dixie's birth and its the anniversary of when we got her because we don't know her actual birthday.  Dixie doesn't mind, she's just happy to get the extra attention.  And I think the fact that she used to live in a prison allows her to be grateful for her current situation.

Dixie is an interesting character as she's not like a regular dog.  She doesn't know how to play and instead her entire focus in life is getting attention and petted.  If you sit down, she is instantly by your side nudging your hand or trying to jump into the chair with you.  At night, I have to race her to the bed because if she gets there first she tends to lay with her head on my pillow and I don't like that.  The only time she is not focused on getting attention is when she smells an animal and then her hunting drive kicks in.  She pulled me into a tree once as I was riding a bike and holding her leash because she caught wind of a rabbit.  And heaven help us if she sees a cat.

To celebrate her birthday, she received lots of love and attention, had her rubber toy filled with peanut butter, extra treats, and some cheeseburger and fries courtesy of her Uncle Jake.  And yes, I sang her Happy Birthday and made her wear the birthday hat.  I did not hang the birthday banner, but since she can't read I didn't think she would mind.

Neither Matt or I have ever had a dog like her, but she's the best dog either of us has ever had and our family wouldn't be complete without her.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Counting Hits

I came across this video on YouTube the other day and instantly thought of my siblings.  No, we didn't hit each other in the faces with iPads but that's only because iPads hadn't been invented then.

It also brought back other memories of how we used to beat the crap out of each other and count the number of hits received and owed.  My brother would hit me, I would then owe him one hit back to be inflicted at any time.  Being able to redeem your hit at any time was great if you were the hitter and terrifying if you were the recipient.  I never knew when my brother or sister would strike, literally.

The best part of this story is that our grandmother is the one who inspired this system.  We were at her house and someone got hit and tattled, grandmother's response was very simple "well, hit 'em back".

Game On Grandmother.  Game On.

We also would build up a bank of hits and if my sister was out of hits and mad at our brother, I could give her one and vice versa.  It was a complicated and efficient system of retribution.

I know for a fact we drove our parents crazy with it and now that I'm older, I admit that at a certain point I just started making up numbers of how many hits I had.  I'm pretty sure Jacob and Laura did the same.  And the violence we inflicted on each other obviously didn't kill us as we all turned out to be successful adults.

In addition to learning how to fight and stand your ground, we also learned about forgiveness... even though we didn't know it at the time.  You can't be mad at someone for too long when you share a room, bathroom, and living space with.  And you never knew when alliances would shift and the sibling you were mad at would be your partner and help you gang up on the other sibling.  You can't have a successful alliance if you are still mad about the fight you had 5 minutes ago, so you get over things pretty quickly.

There's no point in holding a grudge when you are guilty of the same thing your sibling is.  We all make mistakes and lose our tempers.  Let it go and move on.

So mom and dad, I know we drove you crazy with our fighting but I learned how to stand up for myself, where to hit so it doesn't leave a mark, how to forgive, and to get over it from fighting with my siblings.  It only took 30 years, but lesson learned.


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