Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Tuesday Tea Time!

Hello Tuesday Tea Time!

I'm here with many thanks today after a celebratory weekend filled with birthday shenanigans. Growing up birthdays were always made fun for a few reasons. One reason was it was always the start of summer & another was that it always meant good food shared with family & friends. Of course it's always fun to be gifted too. And there was always somebody else with a birthday within days of mine to celebrate too, such as my friends KPK, HG, & 3MD!

Over the years I've had some memorable birthdays. For years my birthday meant my Mammaw would make me whatever kind of pie I wanted. Generally I chose cherry. I was 'kidnapped' more than once by friends & surprised once in Hong Kong. The HK surprise was pulled off so well because I was actually returning to the states a few weeks before my actual birthday, but my friends wanted to celebrate with a cook-out in the park. My birthday has always been an excuse for adventure of new life pieces.

This year we went on a hike, enjoyed a Starbucks treat, took part in the monthly pancake breakfast at our apartment complex, saw Alice in Wonderland: through the looking glass in IMAX 3D (it was excellent), then had dinner at Patisserie Amie. That was all the day before my actual birthday! My actual birthday was filled with a wonderful Sunday morning at work, a quiet afternoon, & a graduation party in the evening. 

The biggest surprise this year was when my children's message got hijacked in the best way possible. My message was highlighting church camp & I had just mentioned camp fire songs when I was told they had a song for me. Before I knew how to respond, the entire congregation was singing 'Happy Birthday' to me. I was blown away in the best way possible. Not only did they sound good, they weren't even prompted to do such a thing & it is quite powerful being sung to by roughly 100+ people.

So today as I enjoy my Kombucha Tea (he picked up the right kind this year!), I am thankful for the fun & the memories & the many well wishes from around the world. This year is bound to be a little better & healthier than the last. Farewell to a beautiful Lusty Month of May!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Tuesday Tea Time!

Good morning Tuesday Tea Time friends!

It's good to be with you today. Last week I could not find the words or energy or focus to join y'all. It was a touch of adventure just to get my own cup of tea to truly begin my day & that happened 2 hours into my morning.

Last week my mind was wondering about the two Amber Alerts on my phone in less than a week. Both babies were found, but what really bothers me is that these alerts have to be sent out ever. Warmer weather does not equal the right to kidnap or steal or give away children or humans of any age.

More recently, in just the past few days I have heard stories of the loss of children in two different ways. No matter the ways in which a child leaves this world, the hard reality is that it is beyond our control. Like the case of the one Amber Alert, we may mess up & make the wrong decision (to leave a child unattended), but more often than not it is not an action of our own. The questions that arise from these instances most often go unanswered.

What brings solace, is the witness of baptism & new life that defies this reality of death. When we acknowledge our lack of power in death, we make room for God's greatness to shine through with the promise of everlasting light. Thanks be to Christ!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Tuesday Tea Time!

Hello Tuesday Tea Time!

Today in the lusty month of May (have you listened to the wonderful Julie Andrews sing this yet?) we celebrate all the mothers of our lives. Yes, this is in lieu of the observed Mother's Day this past Sunday (in the USA & Germany at least). This was my first Mother's Day as a mom to baby Kaia & my furbaby MG. As women are becoming more empowered to talk about, & act against, the challenges of being a women, with or without children, & the adventures that bring us to our different identities of motherhood, I stand firm in that all who identify as a female have the ability to claim 'mother' as a piece in their life roles.

I shared an article titled 'When You're Not a mom on Mothers Day,' on Facebook the other day, taking no time to write any of my own thoughts or reflections on the article. Throughout the day the article received many comments of people reassuring me of my motherhood & sharing their care for me/women who would still be pregnant if that mysterious day didn't happen as it did 8 weeks ago. The love that continues to be shared is wonderfully overwhelming.

I am a mom. I've been a mom for years, but in a different way. I took care of my cousins children when they were little ones. I even taught the twins to tie their shoes! The twins are now finishing their first year of high school. I was a camp counselor, day camp director, Spoke Folk leader, baby sitter, youth director, pet sitter, & many other roles that taught me to be motherly. 

I was never phased much when that one random doctor told me I may never bear children back in the mid 1990s. I honestly just figured if that was true I'd adopt if having my own children was ever part of my calling. I knew that I'd never know what it felt like to be a mom until I had the chance to feel like that. And as I've mentioned, I've had many experiences to feel motherly about, but of course none of that compares to holding my sweet Kaia Gene against my chest while she breathed life for those 93 minutes she had with us (on Pi Day).

I am a mom, madre, mother, mommy, mama. I am beyond thankful for all the moms that have helped me learn how to be motherly. And I am thankful to all the moms who entrusted me with their children & gave me the time to grow as a mothering being. Mother's Day was different this year, but that's alright. 

Happy Mothers Day today, the other day, & every day to all the mothering type of people.

And if you still have a spot of tea left, or need a refill, hop on over to Stumbling into Faith for a read on Mother's Day in 2016 written by my dear friend MBR. A "new mom" herself, she reflects on the brokenness of Mother's Day.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Tuesday Tea Time!

It's the first Tuesday Tea Time in the lusty month of May!

May is my favorite month! It is a month of continuous warming weather that brings Spring buds to bloom & a month of many celebrations. It is May, the lusty month of May!

A huge thank you to my friend TS for editing & posting last week's Tuesday Tea Time. You know you've got good people in your life when you text them (yes both TS & AS) at 7am their time, simply to ask for help getting your blog posted, & they willingly jump on board with not a peep about the time difference between your location & their's. I'm sure it was a delightful way to potentially be woken up to on a Monday morning!

This week marks 7 weeks already gone by since baby Kaia Gene graced us with her presence. Every Monday I remember the Monday morning she was born & give thanks for her life, my life, Z's life, & Easter. I then take a deep breath and move on into my day. 

Last Monday I was attending a work related retreat & while it is a bit of a retreat, it is also work related & therefore of course there was a guest speaker. This year's speaker was Dr. Ben Stewart of LSTC & he shared his passions regarding creation care & natural burials. It really is fascinating work for the church & world, but all I could think while he was speaking was 'shit! My daughter is in a pearl urn.' There's nothing natural about a pearl urn or the reality that Z & I had to make the decisions we did about our daughter's life. Many parents can relate on a variety of levels to this unfair, but real & natural piece of life.

While life can be unfair at times, there is plenty of life to celebrate. And that is just what we do in this lusty month of May, we celebrate!