Monday, March 23, 2015

Know Thyself

How well do you know yourself; honestly. Do you know your triggers, your faults, your sensibilities, your negative traits, your positive traits?
If you were instructed to write about yourself, very honestly, and be assured NO ONE would ever read what you wrote, are you self-aware enough to be brutally honest?
Most of us like to think we know everything about ourselves, but in reality, we probably don't or at the very least, are reluctant to admit it.

Kalisha is very astute in this area. She knows herself quite well; the good and the bad and the ugly.

She knows her biggest downfall in the 'sweet things' area is cookies and Little Debbie treats. She struggles with being able to resist the temptation to avoid them. But, to her credit, she doesn't live in denial; she knows it.
All of this is leading up to a conversation we had a few days ago. It was after watching a Hallmark movie.
She said, "Marriage is supposed to be forever, right?"
I replied, "Yes, it is. That is how God intended it. Why?"
"Well, Daniel keeps asking me to marry him, even though it is years away."
After some thought, she said, "Mom, you know how I get tired of things after a while, right? I mean, after the excitement of showers, and getting ready for the wedding and the wedding day and all of that, I think I might get tired of being married."
Ahhhh, do we know ourselves that well?

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Oh...the Power of Free Pancakes

Two weeks ago, it was very icy in our little corner of the world; (remember that fact) it was also National Pancake Day. In celebration of said day, I made blueberry pancakes for breakfast.
They were delicious and consumed by all 3 people who live here.
IHOP restaurant always advertises a free short stack of pancakes to any customer who comes in to their establishment on this momentous day.

Kalisha did not have to volunteer that day because it was icy enough that schools were either delayed or canceled. (Remember that pertinent fact, also)

She could not resist the thought of FREE pancakes and spent the morning trying to figure out how she was going to get some. I was not going.
She decided she would ride the bus to IHOP. I tried several avenues of discouragement: 1) you have a terrible time walking on slippery surfaces
                            2) you already had pancakes today
                            3) you don't have any extra "eating out" money to spend on the OJ, bacon, and other things you will order to go with the free pancakes

I wasn't getting anywhere; because now Kalisha was in "Kalisha Mode" and she was determined to get those pancakes. She assured me she wouldn't buy any extras with her pancakes and the bus  would drop her off right by the restaurant. I knew where that bus hut was and she would not have to cross the street. I finally acquiesced and said, "Fine, go." If you know me, you can probably hear those words being said.

She got dressed, boots and all and headed to the bus stop which is only a half block from our house. I watched as she maneuvered down the middle of the street because the sidewalks were too slippery. I can't even begin to tell you how far out of her comfort zone this was. She is sooooo afraid of ice; but that only exemplifies the fact she will tackle most things when she is on a mission OF HER CHOICE.

A few hours later, she walked in the front door with an IHOP carry-out bag in her hand, stating, "I got something for you, Mom." Ahhh, guilt kicked in somewhere along the line.

First, she told me she didn't order anything besides the free pancakes. Then she said she felt bad I didn't get to go out to eat, so she used her money to buy me something. Then she inadvertently mentioned how she had made a mistake and she really did have to cross Coldwater Rd, (4 lanes plus 2 turn lanes) to get back on the inbound bus.

That was when the proverbial crap hit the fan. I was furious with her and accused her of knowing that fact before she ever left home. In case you are new to this blog; Kalisha knows the bus system as well as the bus drivers do.

Here's the best part: The 'surprise' for me was a big fat cheeseburger and onion rings.
Guess what Kalisha's favorite meal is....yep, cheeseburger and onion rings.

Here's my theory on this day. She absolutely couldn't get 'unstuck' once she entered free pancake mode and was willing to risk life and limb to achieve that goal. And even hedge the truth a bit to placate me. Once she was there, the smell and thought of her favorite meal was overpowering so she ordered it to go. Some time between IHOP and home, she began to feel guilty about her choices so she gave the meal to me.

Later that evening, she said, "You know, Mom, I really didn't enjoy the pancakes because it's no fun to eat alone and have nobody to talk to. I wish you had been there."

Another day; another life lesson.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Getting It Right...Occasionally: Is It Really Valentine's Day Again?

Getting It Right...Occasionally: Is It Really Valentine's Day Again?: Kalisha has an obsession with Valentine's Day. She has for many years. She buys into all the advertising and all the love movies on H...

Is It Really Valentine's Day Again?

Kalisha has an obsession with Valentine's Day. She has for many years. She buys into all the advertising and all the love movies on Hallmark and wants that kind of "love" and attention and gifts. She believes that is how it is supposed to be and trying to convince her otherwise doesn't work so well.
First, she needs to find a boyfriend; so about Feb. 1st she starts looking. (You didn't know it was that easy, did you?) If some young (or not so young, sometimes) man talks to her on FB, she is immediately in "girlfriend/boyfriend" mode. Then I start with all the advice, talking, convincing, trying to get a perspective on this.
I do not want her to get hurt or be in danger, but don't want to kill something that might actually be okay, either.
She was telling me about this gentleman when I told her she really needed to know him better before she could call him a boyfriend. She asked how to get to know him better. I suggested asking questions (what was I thinking?????) Kalisha is the Question Queen, so she was on that idea right now.
I turned the corner up so you could see she has questions on both sides of 2 legal pad pages; plus she wrote down every answer he gave. She will know more about him than his mother does. Just kidding.
She was then suggesting to him what she wanted him to get her for Valentine's day. I must have missed a chapter in her development somewhere. She is not a greedy person, but when the big HEART day rolls around, she has definite ideas what should be given.
Yesterday, this person came over for a short time, bringing 2 roses, a cute teddy bear and a small box of chocolates.
Just to review: One year, a guy she liked got her a pretty big box of chocolates and the dog we had at that time, ate the whole danged box full; every piece. Did he die? Heck, no. He didn't even get sick. Then one year, a fellow bought her a card. Well, you know, she was not happy about that at all.
This year seemed perfect. 2 roses, small box of chocolates (perfect since she is working hard at losing weight), and the cutest little bear, ever.
She was pleased but wanted a DOZEN roses, and a bigger bear. I know...she sounds awful, doesn't she?
We had a very rational discussion (at least she was rational) about greediness and not being content and being thankful. She isn't this way about any other celebrations. Last year, on her huge birthday party, she asked people to NOT bring her any gifts.
Finally, she called her sister and asked what her girls, Kalisha's nieces, would be getting. Kaylynn assured her they wouldn't get much from their boyfriends and she should be happy with what she got. I guarantee Kalisha didn't get this warped idea of Valentine's gifts from her parents...........
So, where do we stand? She decided she was happy with what she received, tonight she is attending a Valentine's Dance at Bethesda and all is right with her world; (except the guy she is liking is a Steelers fan.....oh, boy)

I have been analyzing the entire situation and this is what I think. Through movies, books and the incessant TV ads, she has a vision of what she believes "normal" people do on Valentine's Day and she wants to be part of that picture.
Just another bump in the road; one more day and it will be over. Thank you, Lord.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Small Steps

If you regularly follow this blog, you will know Kalisha and I (and her team) have set a goal of one year for her to be fully equipped and ready to move out and share an apartment with one or two other young women who need housemates, also. (I shared that information in the previous post)
With that in mind, it seems every decision or action, no matter how small, is prefaced with, "This is something I will have to know before I move out." OR "Kalisha, that is probably something you should work on before you can move out."

It is beginning to get tiresome, so we are trying to be aware of the facts without actually stating them. Unless, of course, I get ticked off about something and then toss out, "Well, you won't be able to do that when you live on your own."

This whole 'preparation' thing is probably more about me than it is about Kalisha. If you had asked me how prepared she was, on a scale of 1-10, I think I would have said, "About an 8."
Now that living on her own is a real possibility, I am rethinking that answer. I may revise it to, "Probably a 3."

I never realized how many little things I decide or how many things I give advice about; even insignificant things: "Do you have the boots that are waterproof?"
"Put those pajamas and towel in the hamper." "Let's have spaghetti for supper." "Do you want to stop at the library now or later?" "I think you need a sweatshirt on if you are going to wear that coat."

Two of the areas I worry about are her inability to handle money and her grocery shopping. I will write about those in the next post. (Some humor coming your way)

Today, I have a 'food' story for you.
Several weeks ago, I attended Saturday evening church and stayed for the chili cook-off after service. Kalisha had elected to stay home. As I am eating chili with my cousin, she hands me the phone and says, "It's Kalisha. She said she made sloppy joes for her supper."
I knew my cousin must have heard wrong. When I took the phone, Kalisha said, "I just wanted you to know I made sloppy joes."
ME: "What do you mean?"
K: "I mean I was hungry and made sloppy joes."
ME: "You fried the hamburger?"
K: "Yes."
ME: "On the stove?"
(If she was a kid with smart-a_ _  answers, she would have said 'No, I fried it on the counter.')
K: "Yes."
ME: "Where did you get the hamburger?"
K: "Out of the freezer."
ME: "Did you thaw it first?"
K: "Yep. In the microwave."
ME: "Is the house still standing and the stove off and everything?"
K: "Yes."
ME: "OK. Wow. I am so impressed."
When I came home, I was pleased to see she had not burned the meat, the kitchen was clean and the leftovers were put away.
I did ask what she put in the hamburger to make it a 'sloppy joe.' She said she didn't put anything in it; she just put it on a bun and ate it plain.                                                    

I was cracking up. If I had been there, I would have given all kinds of directions, y'know. Obviously, she didn't need my directions.

God is in charge; I need to remember that.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Scales and Success

Every January, Kalisha is inspired by all the talk of resolutions and makes a decision to lose weight; as do millions of other people. She usually starts out doing really well until the first trip to the grocery and Little Debbie beckons her or the Golden Arches call her name.
This year, I advised her to not tell anyone when she lost a few pounds. It nearly killed her to not post it on FB, but she didn't. We decided when she reached the 10# mark, she could brag a little. She has reached that goal and is determined to keep going.
So what is different this year? I believe there are several factors:
1) she is exercising
2) she has the motivation of wanting to fit into the khaki pants she has to wear to work at Parkview Field in a few months
3) in the food area, we have tried to R-E-A-L-L-Y concentrate on 'portion control' rather than all the things we can't eat (I am saying 'we' because I am doing this, also, only I can't say I exercise)
I want to tell you a Subway story that I found nearly unbelievable. Kalisha had received a Subway gift card and although Subway has healthy options, Kalisha always orders the meatball sub smothered in mozzarella cheese, a bag of chips and a soda.
Her Friday cooking group took a day off from cooking and went to Subway for lunch. This is her story when she came home.
Kalisha: "I asked the guy behind the counter if a meatball sub was good for someone trying to lose weight. He said 'no.' So I ordered the turkey sandwich with no mayo and I didn't get a bag of chips and no soda."
Me: "Wow. Kalisha, I am so proud of you. That took a lot of will power."
Kalisha: "Yes, it did. Oh, yeah, I did get 2 cookies, one for you and one for me."

My theory is you can't conquer all the giants at one time. I was amazed at her choice of sandwich and that she could actually force herself to do it.

Another football-watching day, she wanted to use her coupon for a Papa John's Pizza. I said it would be very tempting to have that in the house. She told me she would only eat one piece and have a salad with it. That is exactly what she did. She froze the other 7 pieces, so she can have one every time she gets hungry for pizza.
It was a good thing she set a good example for me; otherwise I would have had 2 pieces. :)

For a week, she was losing a pound or a half pound a day. Then for a few days, she stayed the same. Then lost a bit again, and then one morning, she gained a pound back. I coached her through the disappointment and said that always happens to everybody and encouraged her to just keep going. She has and when she got to the 10# again, she put it on FB (this morning) She is blessed with many friends who commented and encouraged her.
I also know the experts say you should not weigh every day, but she wants to, so it is ok with me. That is another motivator.
There are so many reasons (besides khaki pants) for her to lose weight.
She has gone out with friends several times and done fairly well with her ordering but if she orders something like the mint swirl shake at Arby's, it isn't the end of the world. I don't want this journey to be self-defeating.
Right now, she is feeling pretty good about it and we will continue working on our goals, but it definitely isn't the only topic of conversation at our house.



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