Green but not for St Patrick’s Day

Jan 1st 09 - Project 366.No, I didn’t go to a crazy Saint Patrick’s day party and I was not trying out a new hair color.  It’s the Blistex lid and yes, it IS melted and um-hmm….I did this.

So, does anyone have a teenage daughter who likes your bathroom better because it has more or bigger mirrors?  And because of this, they leave their makeup, brushes, hair ties, deodorant, etc., all over your counters?  If so, you will understand this better than most.

I was in a huge rush today.  I had taken off work just early enough to throw some clothes and makeup on and get out the door to a chiropractor appointment.  For some reason, unbeknownst to me, my neck is very tense and out of whack!

Anyway, I decided my new hair do needed a quick touch up with the straightener, so I plug it in while I throw the makeup on.  I only have a few minutes left, so I grab a huge hunk of hair and pull the straightener through and lo and behold, there is green goo all in my hair!!  I was shocked and surprised, but had no idea where it had come from!  After freaking out for a moment, like any good,  self-proclaimed southern belle would do, I was able to calm down and get it out without damaging my hair.

As I picked up the straightener again to clean it off, I happened to look down and saw the culprit.  My daughter in all her messiness had left the straightener too close to a tube of blistex and when I turned it on, it melted all over it.  I had picked it up and pulled it right through my hair. I guess I can’t blame her entirely, but my counters were certainly a lot cleaner while she was out of town on Spring Break.

I told the girl who was doing my deep tissue massage at the chiropractors office the story and she got a good laugh.  I didn’t want her to see green bits and think I had something nasty or leftover in my hair.

The thing is, as messy as she can be and as crazy as things can get sometimes, I am very much aware that I will miss this.  Every little tiny bit of it!

Reflecting and preparing

Ashley and Morgan; then and now

Ashley and Morgan; then and now

It was that time of day when things are getting quiet everywhere.

Outside, the birds are seeking a place to roost, traffic slows down in the neighborhood and people begin to go indoors to settle in for the day.

From where I am sitting, I can see palm trees gently swaying in the breeze, but I can no longer see the streak of sunlight across my dining room floor; the same streak that Ayda found her shadow in when they were here just three long days ago.

I remember watching her quietly, not wanting to spoil the moment.  She would find it and pounce, trying to catch it, and then look for it again, line her little body up just right and try again.  The ever elusive shadow kept her busy for several minutes, an eternity for a toddler.  I remember thinking, “Enjoy this, Nana….capture this moment in your mind’s photo shop so you can enjoy it when they’re gone”.

And way too quickly, they were.  I fought back the tears as I leaned in to kiss her goodbye.  She was already strapped in nice and snugly in her car seat.  Away they drove, leaving me with an ache in my heart that felt like a brass fist clenched tightly around it.

Oh, and it wasn’t only Ayda.  My eldest waved from the car window, her blonde hair bouncing around her shoulders; the hair I used to put in pony tails, pig tails and bows, which she always fought me over.

Her husband and my youngest shared the front seat.  My baby, my youngest (wasn’t she in diapers yesterday?!?) was driving for the first leg of the journey.  The days of Barbie jeeps, speeding up and down our street until the batteries died, are long gone for this nostalgic mother.

Little Sis heading to her Big sister’s home in New Orleans for a visit that will wrap up the remainder of her last Spring Break as a high school student.  Spending Spring Break together is a tradition with them that I hope they keep.

Yes, this house is eerily quiet and lifeless (except for me of course).  And all of the things I thought I would do when I got the time, the solitude, and the silence are left waiting.  It seems I don’t have the motivation to do them today.  I look forward to my husband’s footsteps on the porch to break the silence and his kiss when he comes inside.

I’m glad that I always told my girls that as important as they are, one day they would leave and begin their own lives, leaving dad and I alone.  And for this reason, they must not complain when we spent quality, child-free time together; time spent nurturing our relationship so that when we were alone one day, we’d have invested wisely and be able to draw from that.

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven  Ecclesiastes 3:1

Mitch Teemley

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