There’s been craze lately for people who want to reconnect, support, and keep up on the latest with others they have relationships with. A place where you can go and chat with people who make you laugh, feel good about yourself, and in general put a smile on your face. You can be yourself with those you choose to stay in contact with, you don’t have to put on a facade for those who annoy you or don’t lift your spirits becuase, quite frankly, you can choose who your friends are. Day or night you can find someone to talk to. Post pictures of the family for others to see and in return see pictures of people who have moved so many times your address book is unreadable for all the erasing you’ve done. Take a stroll down memory lane, vent frustrations and ask for advice, cry on someone’s virtual shoulder when life just isn’t going as planned, raise up another when they are having a difficult time.
I’ve been a part of this craze. For over a year I have reconnected with friends from high school, the group I hung around at church/youth camps/dances. Relatives that live far away, and even people I admired in high school but was never ‘cool’ enough to be a friend to. And I have become friends with some of their friends, that I have never met but have things in common with. Want to know what I’ve learned about these groups from high school? Without their brand name purses, high hair, and huge hooped earrings, they are just regular people like me. Raising their kids, loving their families, and trying to make it through life the best that they can. We’re all on the same level now, and I am enjoying their company as much as I always thought I would.
I have learned many things from this place I call an outlet. I have learned to be more empathetic, a little less serious, and how to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. I have laughed, I have definitely cried, and I have felt at peace there. But let me tell you what else I have learned from this place called “FB”.
I have learned that my daughter has a knack for budgeting her money. My son finds new music to try to learn on his guitar. My husband is really more humble than I give him credit for. I have seen happy faces at the sight of a lost platypus, heard the squeels of delight when a chicken coop has been completed, and the long serious chats between to sisters as they try to decide what outfit they should put on their virtual pet or redecorate their fish tanks. I love having the chat box open up with a “hi mom! how are you?”
I know that my friends on FB get tired of my posting special eggs, sending random hearts, asking for more chickens. (learn to hide applications my dear friends!) But I’m not going to give up those games that my children and I play together.
I am a good mother. Above average even. I play with my kids (we love games), I go outside with my kids, we watch movies/TV together, I help with homework etc. so I don’t want you to think that I am not hands on with them and the computer is our only source of communication. It’s just ‘another’ source of communication, and trust me, with teens you will take as many options as you can.
So, FB. What are you? What is your purpose? Why are you so addicting? To the general public your FB initials stand for FaceBook. A gathering of people that you don’t always get to see face to face, but whom you can remain close to. Exactly the reason why I also consider you a FamilyBond. I don’t substitute my computer for actual contact, but when their is no other way I will continue to use FB. Family far, and near can still be close thanks to technology.
As Spring is approaching and the stores are lining their shelves with the new and upcoming fashions, I stand back and ask myself, “who wears some of this stuff?”. Okay, besides the size 2’s and the 10 year olds. And maybe some people who really shouldn’t be allowed to wear them.
We have taught our children to be modest in their dress. Nothing too short, too scoopy, to revealing, too tight etc. You feel how you are dressed, so if you are comfortable and appropriate then you will be on your best behavior, right? Okay, it was worth a shot.
So I look in a lot of places to buy Spring/Summer clothing. A lot of times I end up online. Especially for my teenaged daughter. Have you seen how flimsy some of those t-shirts truly are?
Now I’d like to know, is there anyone else out there that feels that the runway has runout on modesty?
My daughter, Atalie, who is 9 years old and in the 4th grade, has been walking around everywhere singing songs like “Blue Suede Shoes”, “I Want to Hold Your Hand”, “Rockin’ Roll is Here to Stay”, “Tutti Fruiti”, and “Surfin’ USA”. I’ve been loving it. She says that she really likes the “oldies but goodies”. When I was her age I remember my mom introducing me to songs such as “Tiptoe Through The Tulips”, and “Buttons and Bows” from when she was a child.
Anyway, Atalie (and Keegan, but he could care less) is singing these songs at their school music program for the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade’s parents. I can’t wait. I seem to get a sense of pride when I see my kids singing on stage like I did. Especially when they love it. Atalie loves it. Colleen still loves it as well and is very active in the high school choir program. However, I have started to wonder exaclty what my grandchildren will be singing when I go to see them in their elementary’s music performance. What their “oldies but goodies” will be. Perhaps a little Journey or the Eagles? Kenny Rogers, Johnny Cash or George Strait? Throw in a few bands like New Kids on the Block, Backstreet Boys, and the Spice Girls? Someday a teenager is going to want to imitate Pink’s aerial performance of “Sober”. I am sure they will go so far as to sing well loved songs from Michael Jackson the way Atalie sings Elvis.
Sometimes it boggles my mind when I think about the changes in the future. Even now I find myself telling my 13 year old son, ‘Cameron, turn down that noise’ and, ‘how can you listen to that stuff? they aren’t even singing, they’re just yelling!’ Yup, things my parents told me.
When I was in 9th grade our choir put on a performance called Swanee. We looked forward to the show all year long. We even got to try out to sing solos and duets. I sang “Bye-Bye Love”. What a great experience, my mom was truly proud of me. I wonder how I will feel when/if my granddaughter has her spotlight solo singing, “Papa Don’t Preach”.
Hmmm . . .
Have you seen this show? The Buried Life 10PM on Mondays on MTV. Next week is their last show of the season. Bummer. 4 guys, 1 question. What do you want to do before you die? These guys have a ‘bucket list’ of 100 things they want to do before they die. As they drive their bus, Penelope, across the country crossing off things on their list, they also find a stranger and help them cross off one of their goals on their list. Why? To encourage people to go out there and find their dreams and accomplish the impossible. These guys make my Monday (along with www.newthingmonday.com and My Life As Liz)
I’ve always felt too young to have a bucket list (I hate that term) but after seeing so many amazing things on this show I’m going to start one. Here are a few of what I came up with:
*be certified in ASL so I could become an interpreter for the legally deaf
*be a music teacher in an elementary school
*have an enormous family picture on both sides of my families
*visit Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Norway, and the Panama Canal
*have a reunion with the people I grew up with in the Lubbock Stake in Lubbock, TX
*spend a week in Hershey, PA
*learn to sew
*get married again, to my same best friend (Greg), but do it better the second time
*grow a pumpkin patch that elementary kids could come to as a field trip
*travel the country with my husband in an RV
These are just a few, but a start. You can’t start on anything if you don’t know what it is first right? And you are more likely to reach a goal that you have written down.
So, if 4 strangers came up to you and asked you, “What do you want to do before you die?” what would you say?