Thursday, February 12, 2009

Two Pictures of Life Right Now...



What these pictures tell me...

#1: I found this cute little note on my refrigerator yesterday. MCW is McKenna; JBN is her boyfriend, Brett. And let's just say that McKenna is in the throes of her first real teenage romance. She has had numerous boyfriends over the years (I'll never forget the boy in first grade that was so "in love" with her that he did extra chores to buy her a "wedding" ring. It was too cute!), but couldn't officially date (go out somewhere alone with a boy) until she was 16. She and Brett went out in middle school (I always would say, "Where are you going? You're not going anywhere. Say it like we did in junior high. Say you're going with someone."), and now they're together again.

McKenna sings in the shower--very loudly--and it's usually something sappy by Taylor Swift or someone similar. She likes to proclaim, "He's so sweeeeeet," at random intervals. And, I have to give him credit. He does not put up with McKenna's extreme bossiness (she has had a very effective track record of getting fed up with guys when they don't basically do what she tells them to do and then dumping them) and has a good sense of humor about it. And he is pretty sentimental. He has told me what he got her for Valentine's Day and it actually required some forethought and planning. (Not bad for a 16-year-old boy.)

Which all makes me think...

Sometimes we need to stop and reflect on what it felt like to be in the middle of a new love...of a love that still feels fresh...of a love that makes you want to sing along with love songs...of a love that makes you want to go buy little gifts just because of sentimental reasons. Sure, we may be 40 instead of 16. But that doesn't mean that the dopey-in-love youth of the world should have all the fun!

#2: Sydney loves to help me in the kitchen, so when I announced that I was going to make brownies for the youth group I was teaching last night at church, she immediately ran into the kitchen and pulled a chair over to the counter. She poured in the oil and water, stirred the eggs into the batter (she's still trying to convince me that she can crack an egg!), and got it all ready for the pan. But her favorite (and most skilled) part of the process is when I tell her it's time to lick the bowl. (I used to literally cry--I've always been a bit too dramatic when it came to food!--when I found out as a child that Mom had baked something and washed the batter bowl without telling me about it. I vowed that I would always give my kids the opportunity to lick the mixers and the batter bowl. As long as I got to participate along with them.) This picture captures her after the eating-of-the batter. A glob of brownie batter has made it onto her cute little nose.

Which all makes me think...

It's always worth the extra hassle to let your child come into the kitchen with you (even when it's easier to do it yourself). It's always necessary to lick the batter bowl (despite your fears of raw eggs). It's always necessary to stop and enjoy the little moments of life.


Lynilu said...

Sweet stories!

A couple years ago I reconnected with my first love. We enjoyed remembering the joys and angst of being 16 and 17. It was fun to recall with him. We've kept in touch since then, and I hope to see him and meet his wife one day. That first love is so sweet and tender.

I was "Sydney" to my mom. Until I was in my late teens, she saved the bowl or beaters for me, and if Dad was around, he got the other. I miss her so.

Ms.L said...

I agree completely.
I love getting my kids in the kitchen with me. Even the 15 year old enjoys it.

I so needed that reminder about teenage romance. I am being far
too cynical about my son's...

Stacy said...

how is dad handling th whole mckenna dating thing? my hubby says he is going to be very watchful lol!!

Monogram Queen said...

Awwwww McKenna & Brett ... too sweet!

I try to be patient and let Madison help but I confess - Stacy is better at it than I am.
Oh I feel like a rotten mother now!

Gretchen said...

LOL..."going with". Memories.

I remember my mom and grandma wondering where these kids were "going". :)

Very good point about remembering the days when love was new and fresh, and that keeping it fresh is still important.

Susie Q said...

First? I LOVE your header...and how precious is this photo of your sweet girl??

Just wanted to tell you that I am thinking about you all and wishing you all a perfect Valentine's day!!


Jenster said...

Young love and cake batter. Two of my favorite subjects!!

Adrienne said...

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww they grow up soooo fast *sigh* lol

Cheryl Wray said...

Lynilu--How cool that you got to reconnect with your "first" love. That would certainly be interesting to do! :-)

Ms. L--It's easy to be cynical about it. Teens are so dramatic, but I try and remember what it felt like to be 16. Sometimes we lose track of that feeling, and I think we need to reconnect to it to truly "get" what they're feeling.

Stacy--Well, we both are very protective and sorta strict (they can only go out together every other weekend; on the rotating weekend, they have to do something with us if they want to see each other)...but Gary DOES NOT like it at all. He knows it's part of her growing up, but he'd just as soon her be a nun I think. LOL He does enjoy, though, how he gets to have "The Talk" with the boy before they go out.

Cheryl Wray said...

Queen--Oh, gosh. Don't feel guilty now, Patti. You're a GREAT Mom!!!!

Gretchen--I know. The "going out" just cracks me up...especially when they're like 12! LOL

Susie--I had to have some sort of Valentine-y header. :-) And Happy Valentine's Day to you and your sweet family.

Jenster-- :-) They ARE two good things, for sure!

Adrienne--It's CRAZY!!