On Leadership in Parenting

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I spent most of the week at the Oregon coast for Spring Break. You know, after losing a kid in the forest and dropping another one in the riverThat photo up there? It’s the view from our house this week. Yes. This is one of the reasons living in Oregon, despite the rain, is worth it, man. Miles and miles of this.

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We didn’t spend the whole week together. Greg and his folks took Kids 2 and 3 home after a couple of days. He needed to work, and the kids needed the security and stability of home. Traveling freaks the oldest boy out, and the younger girl likes her own bed. One of the biggest challenges of parenting a thousand children is recognizing their individual needs and accommodating them whenever possible. Kids in big families have lots of opportunities to learn to accommodate others and to be patient and to wait their turns and to do what’s best for The Collective. The Hive. The Group Mind. It’s OK; it’s good for kids to understand community and to practice selflessness and generosity. Except, of course, when they need what they need. And so three left. ...  read more

On Finding the Gym and a New Comfort Zone

I bought a trial membership at the gym this week which was harder than you might think and not just because it’s a gym and also, Oh Sweet Baby Jesus Smiling Sweetly in His Manger, a GYM.

No. It was harder than you might think because I forgot how to get there.

That’s right.

I’ve been to the gym before, folks, but it’s been so long I couldn’t remember how to find it. Also, I forgot that my fancy phone can hold my hand, whisper assurances, and take me there if I but ask. I often forget this about God, though, too, so at least my phone’s in good company, eh? ...  read more

How to Exercise at High Altitude: a word problem


(This is after the Medical Teams International Big Run
with my sis-in-law, Kim, who feels this pic makes her look schlumpy
but really she’s just schlumping ’cause I’m so short.
Thanks, Kim!)

I ran a 5K last weekend.

It was a miracle.

Four show-offy senior citizens passed me, speed walking, on the course. I didn’t care, though. Pfft; not me. I ran a 5K, folks, just four weeks after starting the Couch-to-5K program again. Last time I did Couch-to-5K, it took me 16 weeks to complete 9 weeks worth of sessions. So my running is slower than old people walk? Whatever. I totally outpaced the lady with the oxygen tank, so I’m marking it in the win column. ...  read more

Couch-to-5K or 5K-to-Couch? Decisions, decisions.

I really wanted to title this post “Butt Weight, there’s more!” Because it’s about running and why I run and my weight, and, you know, butt weight, there’s more. But then I thought that title might be mean to me, and I’m trying to knock that crap off. So, well, this is the conversation I had with myself abou tit:

But it’s funny!
But it’s mean.
Butt it’s funny!
Yeah. I totally saw that. Knock it off.
Fine. Forge tit.
I think you meant to type forget it.
Oops. Those t‘s and the tricky space bar always mess me up.
You’re the most immature person I know, Beth.
RIGHT? ...  read more

Mothering doesn’t get easier. It gets stronger.

You know how intensely irritating (read: soul-sucking) it is when you’re barely surviving the raising of little littles and you’ve been covered in spit-up and boogers and yogurt and poo for days, and you’re praying for just three hours of uninterrupted sleep (or a terrible car accident that will put you in the hospital for at least a week where soft-spoken nurses will bring you soup and say, “there there” and hit you with a shot or twelve of morphine every couple of hours), and so you post a cry for help (or at least for sympathy) on Facebook – “SO TIRED!” – and some mother / soon-to-be-former friend who’s apparently FORGOTTEN EVERYTHING about the early years of child-rearing says something like, “Oh. You think you’re tired now?? Just wait ’til you have teenagers. HAHAHA!”, and then, to rub it in extra hard, she adds a winky face, and you want to unfriend her but that’s not at all homicidal enough? ...  read more

Chafing Is No Joke

Chafing is no joke, you guys.

Chafing is no joke, and this is how I know…

I corresponded last week with my friend, Fiona, who wrote many beautiful and wonderful things. We connected. Deeply. About Important Stuff. Like Faith and Parenting. And Irreverence and Laughter. And being Real, Complex People (read: Completely Bonkers).

About Welcoming Others. ...  read more

I run very fast on my merry-go-round in my dreams.

“I run very fast on my merry-go-round in my dreams.”
Cai Woolsey, age 5

“MOM!”

“MOM!”

“MomMomMomMomMOM!”

His cry echoes through the house.

Seriously? I think as I lug myself out of bed to go to my preschool baby. I can tell by his tone that he’s not distressed, so I’m less motivated than usual to come as commanded. It’s the middle of the night. I just Want. To. Sleep. ...  read more