May 28, 2017

This vs Next

5/28/2017 — cori

Let me tell you a little story about driving with Bennett: it's hard. The end.

Actually, he's quite a good driver. But he has a little problem with the words: 'this' vs. 'next'.

As in, "Bennett, please take the next left."

"This one?"

"No, the next one."

"Which one is that???" (panic setting in)

"It's the next one after this one."

And around and around we go. Over and over. Isn't that the definition of insanity?

As always, Brian Regan has a perfect skit to capture this madness: This is my real life people!

May 15, 2017

Prom 2017

5/15/2017 — cori

How did this....

morph into this.....?

seemingly overnight? And now, as it rightly should be, someone else steps in and stands by his side.

Morgan, a sweet girl from Gavin's Mock Trial team (she asked him to prom). Two future engineers. Two friends, enjoying a fun night out together. 

They were part of this larger group of friends going out to dinner at Doolittles and over to Target Field for a night to remember. Somehow, Gavin found himself in a group with the Prom King - a fun person to hang around on this special night.

Their awesome Principal, Jason Berg, was at prom with his senior class tweeting live videos and pictures from the event. I was actually SHOCKED to see my boy, who does not dance (at least in my presence) actually dancing in this video. So happy for him!

Serenity and Sun

5/15/2017 — cori

As I walked down this stairs yesterday morning, I was greeted with streamers and a beautiful homemade "mom" sign. My heart was already full with love, now it was beginning to brim over. I thought Chuck had made it, since I went to bed before him the previous night. Come to find out, Chloe set her alarm to get up at 3am to do all this for me, bless her heart. She wanted to surprise me. That she did.

Homemade cards, signs, gifts, ideas are my very favorite. They mean more to me than bought items (although, I also appreciate items that cost money). I had to beg Chloe not to make me breakfast in bed for Mother's Day. I don't understand why this is a 'thing'. But I know that her and her daddy love to make breakfast in bed. And I'm not a huge fan of eating in bed. This is the first time I have been able to make this request without her breaking down into tears. Success.

After beholding love made with streamers in my kitchen, I decided to spend time laying outside in the hammock until everyone else got up. Peaceful doesn't even begin to describe how it felt to lay out here for an hour with only the sounds of birdsong to accompany me. 

There was the slightest breeze and every so often these wind chimes with gently sway making the most angelic sound. Did I mention how perfect it was outside. The sun, the unseasonably warm weather, the serenity, the gentle sounds of nature. My overwhelmed heart was bursting with love. I couldn't imagine this day getting any better.

And yet it did. We spent it, yet again, in Stillwater, one of my favorite places in Minnesota. We've spent at least 3 Mother's Days here over the past 6 years. This place just draws me in. Maybe it's the adorable Main Street; or maybe our favorite burger joint - Leo's. Maybe it's the magnificent views of the St. Croix River or the San Fransisco vibe you get from being in a town built into cliffs. Maybe it was the Stillwater Stairs written with kind and encouraging words.

Not only are the views amazing but the smell! Oh my goodness! Those lilacs are intoxicating! Their aroma makes you smile even if you don't want to. They are such a happy flower. Their fragrance wafts through the air sprinkling it with happiness this time of year. 

The best part was the sign my 15 year old son bought for me (see, I do like bought gifts). I'm the luckiest mom and thankful for this life.

May 4, 2017

Letting It Go

5/04/2017 — cori

Can I just say how incredibly proud I am of this kid right here?! He just blew my socks off last night. He came to tell me something that he learned as he was tucking me in last night (yes, the roles have officially reversed). My heart melted.

The last six years have been tough on Bennett. He never really found any friends. He never fit in with the boys on the team. They never truly accepted him, included him, or befriended him. He's felt like an outsider the whole time we've lived here. The upside to that is that we have an awesome relationship and he loves to hang out with us. The down side is that kids his age want and need to hang out with friends their own age. It's a normal part of growing up. 

My heart has broken as many times as his after witnessing, time and again, the exclusion, the rude comments, the unfriendliness, and the disrespect he's put up with on a daily basis from people he has to spend a lot of time with. What's a parent to do? How are we supposed to handle that? What can we say that will take away the sting, the pain? Not much. 

But Bennett's heart has been growing. He's been listening intently to the lyrics of his beloved Lecrae. He's been taking to heart the Rob Bell podcasts we listen to each week. He's devoted himself to serious meditation. And all this sensitivity of heart, mind, and soul has produced a kid who has chosen to let go of the hurt and learn from the experience.

For a long time he's been understandably bitter and angry at these boys (and a few teachers). He let it affect his attitude, his self worth, his enthusiasm for life. But not anymore. Yesterday he had a revelation and couldn't wait to share it with me.

"Mom, I've been thinking. I'm not going to be mad at these people any more. I'm going to forgive them. I'm going to choose to learn from this experience instead of hold on to the anger."

And then he showed me the list of people he'd created and how he wrote next to each name: "I forgive you for.... " and "Because of this, you've taught me....". I don't think I could have ever come up with something so brilliant to tell him. He's letting the resentment go all on his own. No one talked him into it. No one shamed him for feeling a certain way. No one told him it was the right thing to do. His heart was ready and he saw the benefit in it all on his own. 

What maturity. What a sensitive heart. I respect and admire and love this kid more than words can say. He is my inspiration.

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