Monday, November 8, 2010

Project 365: Day 99 - And Off She Goes....

Looks like I'm flying out again tomorrow for business. My boss comes to ask if I can go and, once again, there was no way I was going to say "no." I actually kind of already anticipated that they might ask me to go again this week. That's why I made arrangements with the boys' dad to have them one extra night this past weekend. Flying out on a late flight just to spend one evening in another city and the entire next day in seminars and training sessions is well worth it when my reward was spending all that quality time I got with my boys.

My babies called me tonight before they went to bed as they do every night they are with their dad. It's hard for me to believe that they're five now. But then they open their mouths and they speak like they're 10. I exaggerate of course. But the conversations we have now are so colorful and animated and the investment they have in whatever they're talking about is like I'm right there in front of them. I never want to rush to get off the phone. Our four or five days a week fly by in a flash and that makes the phone calls all the more precious. I could talk to them for hours.

I'm already looking forward to their phone call tomorrow night. I'll be in another town, a thousand miles away. I'll tell them about my ride in the airplane. Peanut will tell me all about the pet name his teacher, Mrs. Alicia, has for him: "_____y poo" . (leaving it blank for obvious reasons.) And Big E will explain to me how General Greibus (Star Wars character - that's how we pronounce it) is a bad guy and how Dark Badar (again, our pronunciation) is a bigger bad guy. I could listen to them forever. I actually need to buy a tape recorder so that I can just record their voices. Listening as Peanut learns to say million (mill-ee-on) and Big E as he struggles with his S's, well..... there's no sound on earth that's sweeter. Music to my ears.

Hopefully travel will not become a regular thing. But if it does, I might have to invest in one of those cameras for my computer or learn how to skype.

99 of 365: Since my sweet boys are not with me tonight, I pulled a couple more favorites from the archives....

Good Night All!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Project 365: Day 98 - Ours, Not Mine....

Often times I feel as though my posts are bordering generic and I feel guilty. Almost as if I'm posting simply to be posting. And truth be told, that is probably the case. There are a great deal of things that I think about opening up about and then I change my mind, wondering if I have a right. After all, the things that happen in my life don't just happen to me alone. There are other people involved and I have to be sensitive to those people in my life.

I have a feeling many other bloggers go through this same tug of war. Do we write about everything or do we compromise our art for the sake of being considerate? Sometimes it's not even about the privacy of other people but rather the idea of becoming a true "open book." Do I really want to air all of my dirty laundry to the world? Who does that help? Me? My children? Strangers I'll never meet?

About two weeks ago, the boys' father finally asked me about my site. Keep in mind, I've been doing this for over two and a half years. Posting about me and my children and uploading photos for the whole world to see. He was concerned that I was serving our children up to strangers, more specifically "very bad" strangers. And to be perfectly honest with you, I never really looked at it that way. Does that make me a bad mother? I actually started feeling guilty that the thought never crossed my mind. How could it not? Society is so full of really bad people and the internet can, at times, be a cesspool of scum (present company not included, of course.)

I know exactly what my mom is saying right now.... "don't let this deter your momentum, don't let this stop you from doing what you enjoy and what you've spent years cultivating." I absolutely agree with her, but you know what? I actually agree with him too. His concern, albeit a couple of years late, is warranted. These are not just my children. They are our children and if he wants to be concerned about how I display them to the world, well, then he has a right to.

I guess I'm writing about this because if I choose to stop posting every single night, it will not be because he asked me to. He actually didn't. Again, this is a man of very few words and the fact that he even opened about his concerns, well, that surprised me and, at the same time, impressed me. He simply asked me about it and said that he felt uneasy. He never told me to quit doing it. I don't think he would ever do that. But he did ask if I could make it private, so that only people I knew would be able to view it. My response was.......... "I don't think I want to do that."

So it's not like I'm completely ignoring his concerns. I hear them and I share them. But if I made my site private, I would feel like I was defeating the purpose of my site. Which is to share a story about a mom who was blind-sided by separation and the loss of her marriage, but who is learning to cope with her new life as a single parent. If I hide that story from the people who might actually be looking for proof that they are not alone in their own journey, then I would be turning my back on one of the reasons I do it. I write my story for three reasons: for me, for my boys, and for the countless other single moms who need to know they have a family and that there is a more pleasant side to divorce.

I still have not decided whether or not I will end my "Project 365" at day 100. But if I do, know that the choice was mine for the reasons I stated last night. I don't want this to become work. I want this to still be an outlet and a place I can go when what I'm experiencing as a single mom is relevant. I may not post every night, but you can bet your ass that a two and half year project will not simply cease. And who knows, maybe I'll change the name from "Project 365" to "100 Days with Peanut and Big E."

I will actually not be posting a photo tonight. My boys and I were too lazy to take pictures. But we did have a great weekend, lounging around in pjs, baking cookies and watching movies for the past two days.

Good Night All!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Project 365: Day 97 - Decisions, Decisions......

As I draw closer to my 100th post, I've found myself contemplating ending my "project" there. I honestly, feel like I have gone a great deal farther than I ever thought I would. I guess that goes against my optimistic views, haha. But honestly speaking, I never thought I would consistently post every night (with the exception of that one night).

Material is easy to come by with two boys and I have a massive vault of photos to choose from. I think my biggest challenge comes on days when single parenthood has wiped me out. I have only four nights a week with my boys. I usually spend as much quality time with them as I can and therefore, I put off posting until after they're in bed. Of course, I usually pass out with them which requires me to wake up dazed and confused around 11:30. I stumble down stairs, because I have a commitment to keep damn it. And I'm not going to let myself down.

I love posting. I love having a digital journal that I can actually print and maybe one day, my boys will want to read it. I love connecting with other single parents. I love reading comments from dear friends that encourage my every move. But when something starts to feel like it's becoming work rather than a creative outlet or a passion, then I usually take that as my cue to move on.

I haven't made my decision yet. I may stick this thing out for the next 265 days. But if I do decide to move in a different direction, I will not be disappointed in myself. 100 days is a lot of days. And if I decide to write once a week, I think I may give myself the opportunity to be more creative and more insightful.

Stand by......

97 of 365: One of my all-time favorites...

Good Night All!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Project 365: Day 96 - And the Weekend of "Nothing" Begins...

I honestly think that I should have been a detective. Maybe I was a detective in a former life or something. Because I love a juicy case to solve. You know I work for a law firm, but not a criminal defense attorney or assistant D.A. It's a real estate firm, so not much investigating opportunity there. But every now and then I get a sweet dilemma or mystery that needs figuring out. And today was one of those days. Of course, I cannot go into detail about the merits of the case. I love my job too much to risk anything of the sort. But I will say that today was just one of those days that my former life crossed paths with my present one.

Tonight my boys and I started our weekend of "nothing" with a little Mickey D's (what!... no cooking is ok on the weekend of "nothing"), a little Scooby Doo Haunted House, an overly long session of sorting plastic dinosaurs and finally a Ben 10 marathon. But somewhere in the middle of all that, my boys wanted me to take pictures of them close-up. Ok.... I lie. I wanted to take pictures of them. But they always happily indulge me.

96+ of 365: faces.......

Good Night All!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Project 365: Day 95 - Quality Time.....

I cannot begin to tell you how much I'm looking forward to this weekend. This will be the first one without a million plans AND my first weekend home in several weeks. Needless to say, I am super behind with house stuff, but I will be taking full advantage of every second I have with just my babies. I love family time and birthday parties and school functions. But I also love quiet weekends where the three of us are in charge of our schedule and we have no where we have to be.

95 of 365: Quality time is absolutely priceless.....

Pumpkin patch at age four

Good Night All!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Project 365: Day 94 - Welcome Home Mama.....

Traveling is tough. Especially when its one quick night and all the pillows in youe hotel room are down pillows.

94 of 365: But I did get to come home to lots of candy and my sweet babies...

Good Night All!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Project 365: Day 93 - business trips....

I don't love flying. But yesterday, my boss called me into her office and asked if I could join her and the partners on a one night business trip. I certainly was not going to say "no". Even if it does mean that I have to go one extra day without seeing my boys. Hopefully they will understand. Success in my career is success for them too. I work hard so that I can provide for them the way they deserve. Even if it means flying when I don't love flying.

I'm in a decent hotel but with no wifi. So I am entering this semi-post through my iPhone therefore no photo tonight. See you guys with an update tomorrow hopefully.

Good Night All!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Project 365: Day 92 - The Power of Positive Relationships....

This weekend was one of those amazing weekends that you just want to freeze in your brain for the rest of your life. I can't begin to tell you how much I love spending joyous times with my boys. And this weekend was no exception. And I was able to do it with the boys' father in a harmonious fashion. Which always makes things easier.

As a single parent you realize that your relationships with the people around you are extremely important. You need certain support levels that you might not seek as a married couple or dual parent household. I lean on my parents for a great deal of support and therefore I always make sure our relationship is in check. Which doesn't take much effort. My parents have always been major supporters of me and I will always be eternally grateful for that.

I also lean on my friends for their ears and their shoulders when things get rough and I need someone outside my regular "go to" mama. It takes a little more effort keeping those relationships in check because the work needed on both sides of the equation can become harder with busy schedules and differing lifestyles. But I always do my part and my friends are amazing for doing theirs.

Being able to have a "harmonious (as I earlier put it) relationship with the boys' father can take a little more effort than all of the above, but it is one of the most important relationships I have to focus on. I know that there are so many people out there who wear the "single parent" name tag that don't have the level of harmony with their former significant others as I have with mine. Of course, I'm not going to lie and say that everything between us is great, because if it were, well, I wouldn't actually be writing this right now. I would be back in my home with my boys at this very moment. There are many things that we disagree on. Some of them having to do with how we raise our children, but most of them having to do with our own personal relationship with each other.

And even though we may never see eye to eye again on our feelings about our marriage or ourselves, we will always bring forth a harmonious front for our children. And the "front" will never be faked or forced. We love spending time with them and we love making them happy. We weren't able to do it together as husband and wife, but we know we have the opportunity to do it together as friends and parents. I will always hold on to that and appreciate the fact that we are strong enough and mature enough to agree at least on that.

This weekend we, as a team, enjoyed a day at Six Flags with the boys, and then another day planning and hosting their birthday party. I had fun. He had fun. And most importantly.... the boys had fun. We will never agree on everything, but we will always love our boys.

92 of 365: Here's to you, Batman and Robin!!!

Good Night All!