On Being Picky

Monday, November 28, 2011

When I go to order a sandwich, it never ceases to amaze me at how shocked the sandwich people (for lack of a better title) look when I put in my request.

"Turkey, Swiss, White Bread, Mayo. Yes that's it. No I don't want any vegetables. Yes I'm sure."

(and yes this is the way I order it at EVERY sandwich place- regardless)

Over the years it has become obvious to me, that waiters and food servers in general find me "difficult" or "picky". I have since developed a theory that I am not "difficult", but rather so "simple" that people don't know how to accept it. But even if my weird ways are coined as "picky", I haven't quite figured out yet what is so wrong with that.

Sure we are talking plain sandwiches and dry cheeseburgers, but in life, why do have such an aversion to pickiness?

We have all been told at some point in our lives or another "don't be picky", but some of us have carried that typical motherly response into other, more critical areas of our lives. It is in my opinion that settling can be one of the very worst things we can ever do for ourselves, in ANY aspect. If we are not "picky", how does one ever expect to find what they are searching for? Few times in life does the right thing show up the first time we seek it. It is typical of the Lord to send choices our direction, and allow us to sift through them, developing perseverance along the way.

I think the two big areas that this concept of pickiness applies most is in the job scene and relationships. Both are major time commitments, that one often feels thankful just to have in their lives. It is common to see people stuck unhappily at jobs, or unhappily in relationships for fear of suffering over the "loss" of one or both of these things. But is temporary unhappiness not WORTH eventually finding the "one" that you no longer have to compromise happiness for at all? I say yes.

I don't think many people feel comfortable with saying "no", nor do they feel confident that something that meets their criteria will come along. This type of thought process is for the weak of heart. While there is a true need to appreciate what you have, how will you learn to appreciate if no work is involved in the search?

I believe pickiness is one of the best and most attractive qualities in a person, and I will not settle for less than someone who is not at least half as picky as I am. I want to know that I was as hard for them to find as they were for me. Is it too much to ask that they not be as "plain" as my sandwich though? :)

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

A bit from Florida

Monday, November 21, 2011

We arrived in Florida on Saturday evening after a LONG, and I mean LONG car ride with 6 people plus Caroline... so like 6.5 people. Despite how long we were in the car, Caroline actually impressed me without how well she behaved! I must have told her a million times that we were going to the beach, and for someone who had no idea what the beach was, she sure waited patiently to see it! The downside? I don't think she will ever believe me again when I say, "We are almost there," as I told her that the entire last three hours.

Needless to say, we arrived to our Condo around dinner time. Starving, we all ventured up to the PH (Penthouse)- and oohhhed and ahhhhed at the 4,000 + sq. ft. condo we were staying in. I will post some cool pics of that later. We were all a little worn out so we grabbed a bite to eat and then settled in for the night.

Laura and I have been getting up each morning and running. Our first morning run was filled with complaining and doubt, as we attempted to run on the beach. Finally about 1 mile into our run, we had conjured some beach runners knowledge by loosing the shoes, running closer to the water, and leaving all care behind for getting our clothes wet as we frequently get attacked by waves, completing our first day with a 3.55 mile run. Day two we added another half mile, and completed it in less than four minutes longer than the day before. Clearly we got a clue after that first day.

Besides our morning runs: we have all spent the days being lazy on the beach, reading, taking pictures, and eating good sea food. I have even managed to get an essay out of the way. This may be one of the most productive vacations I have had yet.

Caroline is crazy about the beach. She LOVES it!! Now the ocean on the other hand, not so much! She looks at me with bewilderment when I get remotely close to the water, and all but jumps out of her skin when I put her down by the tide. At least she is staying fairly clean while we are out there? I'm definitely not worried that she's going to run in without supervision. That's a plus!

Today we spent the entire morning at the beach, and I really started thinking about how different things are this year. I'm so excited to have Caroline here participating in this yearly family tradition, but it's a totally different game than when I did what I wanted all day every day for the week. For instance: Right now, I could be on the beach getting my tan on, but instead I'm blogging inside while Caroline takes a nap. When we are laying on the beach reading I get through one page every 5 minutes because I keep checking on her making sure she is not eating sand, running away, being carried away by seagulls, or any other typical beach tragedy.

Having said that, I wouldn't change it for the world!! I love watching her discover all of these new and exciting things in her world! The weather here as been fabulous: Sunny and in the 70's with a slight breeze. I am in love with the fact that Caroline can play outside all her little heart desires, and that I can actively participate without thinking of all of the 10 million things I SHOULD be doing. That's what my vacation was all about for me this year anyhow.

Tonight I think my cousin and I are going to see Twilight, just like we have the past couple of years during our Thanksgiving vacation. It's a tradition that will sadly end after next Thanksgiving when the last of the series comes out. **SNIFF SNIFF**

That's about all that is going on in our world. HAVE A GREAT WEEK!!

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

Go The Distance

Friday, November 18, 2011

"Distance is not for the fearful, it is for the bold. It is for those who are willing to spend a lot of time alone, in exchange for a little time with the one they love. It is for those knowing a good thing when they see it, even if they don't see it nearly enough."


I've decided that physical distance is fact, and there is no denying the number of miles separating two destinations, but how you perceive the distance can change the entire obstacle itself.

Something to consider.


...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

11.15.11- A quote by me

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

In life we often know the logical choice, what makes sense, and which decision is the most risky. Every decision has a consequence. We know this too. What we often times forget is that the uncertainty is invaluable. Logic gets you into the position to take risks, and most great endeavors started with a risk that made no logical sense. Illogical, senseless, risky decisions often times leave everyone around us wishing they were brave enough to make those types of decisions.

You wonder what if it doesn't... and to that I say

...but OH, what if it does.

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Lola (Our new kitty) is adjusting well. She is still extremely needy, sometimes annoying, and still figuring out that her litter box is in the bathroom, but overall she has been doing well. Last night, I was slightly anxious about her behavior, and extremely exhausted. Add those two together and you get *dun duh da** Psycho Girl! I woke up slightly irritable and ready to throw in the towel already.

I got ready to the music of Meowing, and then woke Caroline up. I got her out of bed, got my morning hugs and kisses, then I froze. I was struck with an extremely enlightening realization. As I looked at Caroline, all innocent and sleepy eyed, I realized what an iconic symbol she is in my life. Now mind you, I realize that most parents have an unconditional love for their children and can not possibly fathom life without them, but in my case, I don't simply love Caroline, I NEED her. What I realized at that moment was: Caroline is the only thing in my life that I haven't given up on. When times are hard, I run from most everything in life: Sports, Relationships, Needy Pets, Jobs, etc. Caroline is the first thing in my life that I love unconditionally and don't look for an "out" of when things don't go as planned.

She has taught me the meaning of the word Committed. I know that she needs me, but she will never understand how much I needed her.

This is a song I listened to A LOT when I was at OU, just trying to get through the semester to go home and have Caroline. I listened to it again the other day, and really can't express my feelings towards her any better than this song can.

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

Say Hello!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

We have added a new family member! Say "Hello" to Lola Jo!

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

Why I Say No

Entering into the "terrible twos" phase in this journey, much like every other child in the world, Caroline has developed an attachment to the word "NO!". She is the sweetest little thing, but when she doesn't want to do something, there isn't a moments hesitation before that phrase flies out of her mouth, usually accompanied by a sly smile, as if challenging me to a dual of some sort.

(Doesn't she just look like she is ready to tell you "no"?)

All of this impulsive declaration of Independence brought a question to the fore front of my mind. At what point did we stop saying "no" to the things in life that keep us from happiness?

As we get older, we stop demanding what we want in life and start settling for things we don't. I think a lot of us are very in touch with what we want and what we don't, but it's so much easier to say "yes" in times of decision than it is to suffer the consequences of a rejecting "no". We are constantly presented with situations that require a commitment of some sort. What if we stopped committing to things that we know we shouldn't, don't want to, or can't do? What if we stopped saying "yes" to so much?

There is a silly song that comes on Caroline's "Nana Puddin" CD that we listen to in the car, and every time it comes on I tell her, "This is Mom's favorite song." The chorus says,

"Sometimes in life you've gotta say no, no doubt it. Sometimes in life you've gotta say maybe maybe maybe. Sometimes in life you've gotta say Y.E.S, but only say 'yes' to the choices that are best."

The point is: Just like Ecclesiastes 3 says, "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens."

I'm for "yes", lots of "yes"s in life, but I'm also for "NO". I prefer it not be shouted in anger over an unshared toy or defiance, but honestly, I can suffer through Caroline's "NO"s right now, if in return she will continue to say it for the right reasons for the rest of her life.

Top 5 reasons Why I say No:

1. I physically can not do something.

2. I am not emotionally willing to risk my heart for this experience.

3. I have prior commitments to others, and intend to honor them.

4. I have prior commitments to myself, and intend to honor them

5. The potential consequences of this experience are not worth the potential 'fun'.

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

A take on "Me" time

Thursday, November 3, 2011

A few days ago, I stumbled upon one of those fill-in-the-blank paragraphs in SELF magazine and decided to fill it in. I thought it may be fun to share my answers with you, as it definitely ties in to the hoopla I have been reading this month about finding time to love yourself. So here ya go:

A Love Letter To.... You

I'd like to take a minute to give thanks for me. I deserve Chick-Fil-A, a new computer, and the most "Down to Earth" award, because I truly rock. Someone with my strong personality and good advice giving skills should be feted with a shopping spree. So on November 1, I vowed to take at least a few hours for me. I'll take several runs a week, enjoy a good book, and give Katelyn a call, because we have the most uplifting and encouraging conversations. I may even wear my rain boots and pearls, and refer to myself as The Queen of Chateau De La Courtney, all afternoon. Starting now, I'll remember to acknowledge that I deserve time for my writing and space for my eight million crafts and projects. In short, I'm going to enjoy the heck out of myself, on Self Day and every day! ___________________________________________________________________

The survey was fun, but I couldn't help but think of it as almost a JOKE. While I believe it is very important to value yourself and value your time, I'm somewhat annoyed with all of the "Make time for myself" mumbo jumbo I have been reading on nearly every blog and site this month so far. Someone wise once told me, "your life is not your own", and how true this is!

To a certain extent, it is important that we give ourselves some recognition and even some reward for the hard work we put into our lives and families, but I can't help credit the "need for acknowledgement" problem in young people today, back to this notion that we are to be spoiled and praised for our participation in life. Furthermore, we have developed the notion that if we do not receive ENOUGH of this from those around us, we must resort to providing it for ourselves.

NOW, all of that being said, I have been known to buy myself a necklace or frequent my favorite restaurant for a more expensive lunch, just a gesture to myself. Hypocritical? Not really. I give back to myself all of the time, and these small "happys" (as I call them), are simply things that fit into my day as a mother, worker, daughter, etc. There is no need for me to "carve" out several hours for myself. It's not about me. My happiness is not derived by the time I can get to myself, but rather the people in my life that are taking up the time I have.

If you have yet to commit yourself to a family of your own, remember that you are still a part of a family. As a son or daughter, sister or brother, nephew or niece, cousin, grandchild, etc. , you are committed to giving your time to those people in your life even if its not by choice. Remember- those people devoted what could have been "self" time to you at one point to get you where you are now. If you have a spouse or children, you CHOSE to relinquish the majority of remaining "self". There is nothing wrong with doing things that make you happy, but once children are involved, your few hours a day may need to transform into a few minutes. MAKE THEM COUNT! I am thankful when I can take a 1o minute shower without little hands thrashing the curtain open. __________________________________________________________________


As negative as I'm sure this post sounds, the conclusion is rather simple and optimistic.

Your life is not your own. You are not ENTITLED to anything in this life, including hours of "me" time. Start looking at the small things you do for yourself as the BIG things that keep you motivated and inspired. When you stop for a cup of Starbucks on your way to work, or make YOUR favorite dish for dinner- those things are for you even without the time allotted for it. It is okay for you to spend a few hours getting your nails done, or maybe shopping for your winter wardrobe, but just understand that the time spent doing those things is time you should feel privileged to instead of warranted. So go take that run, or curl up with that book, AFTER your other commitments are fulfilled. Love yourself through it all.

...and that my Dear, was all she wrote...

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