Wednesday, November 25, 2009 |

Kris and Computers

Our computer has been doing some funny things lately. Which is odd, because we have a Mac, and Macs are perfect. (Haha... but seriously, we've had virtually NO problems in 2.5 years.)

So finally it comes out the other day:

Kris: "Well, I DID download some new program."
Sarah: "What new program?"
Kris: "It's called 'SilverLight'."
Sarah: "Well, why'd you download that for?"

(here's the best part...)

Kris: "Because CTV told me to."


I laughed and laughed and laughed. Kris had said it perfectly straight-faced, but soon realized how ridiculous it was and started laughing, too.

It's interesting to me how ludicrous it sounded once we both thought about it. But the funny thing is, is how often we do things because we're told to - through social and cultural pressures, advertising, etc. But it sounds so much dumber when you actually verbalize that someone told you to.

Thanks, honey, for the funny things you say, and for your raw honesty. :) And for reminding us both how silly it is to do something just because someone/something told us to...
Tuesday, November 17, 2009 |


Parenting is tough work.

That seems like such an obvious statement. But let me elaborate. I am really finding it tricky sometimes to parent in a gentle way.

Sometimes I get it - and I like how that makes me, and consequently my son, feel. I love those moments when he is frustrated or upset, and I can just get down on his level, and with gentleness, work on why he is feeling that way. I like when I can curb my anger and treat him with dignity and love, even when he disobeys.

But often I don't get it - and I see something in his eyes that registers that I am angry with him. That Mommy is mad at him. I hate those times. Like today, when in a moment of total frustration, I purposely used a loud voice to scare him ("Sam! NO!") as he was about to get into something in the kitchen. He jumped, and then bawled. And the funny this is, he still ran to ME. I was mean to him, and he still came to me. (I realize that THAT won't happen for too much longer...) It took milliseconds for the reality of what I did to sink in... I got down and held him as he cried. I cried to know that I had caused this. To know that I could have simply asked him not to get into the drawer. I didn't have to act that way. I said to him, "I'm so sorry Sammy, Mommy didn't mean to scare you". Then I corrected, "Actually, Mommy DID mean to scare you, and for that, I am so sorry. That was wrong of me." I told him I loved him. And I pray that the feelings of that situation stay with me the next time my temper reaches boiling point.

My good friend Claire wrote a great post about this recently, which just hit the nail on the head for me. And there's another great blog I read about parenting a while back, which also really resonated with me. I'm thankful for others around me that encourage me in my parenting goals.

Some good friends of the Chetneys got Kris and I a book when we had Sam - it's called "Espresso for you Spirit: Hope and Humor for Pooped Out Parents". It's a book of little stories and fun quips about child-rearing, written by a long-time parenting counsellor. I kind of thought it was cheesy, so I just stuck it in the bathroom and kind of forgot about it. Then yesterday, I picked it up for the first time, and read something that really got me:

Oh, how much I want to be more like Him as I parent my children - to sense what is going on inside their hearts and be a hugger rather than a hammer.
To offer a smile rather than a scowl.
To say, "I believe in you" when they find it hard to believe in themselves.
To see the pain driving the profanity.
To listen rather than lecture.
To model rather than mandate.
To bring peace rather than pressure.

I think I might write this out and stick it on my fridge to remind me of my goals. To parent the way that my Father parents. To parent with peace and gentleness and grace - instead of anger and control and frustration.

I am so thankful that there is grace in this journey.

Monday, November 16, 2009 |


I crave community.

I have lots of friends. And I am blessed to have some really great close friends, with whom I can pray, and talk about my vulnerabilities, and be really real with. I've realized that I definitely don't lack friendship and companionship. In fact, I'm blessed beyond what I could have imagined in that area.

But I really crave community. A communal way of living. I just really don't believe that single-family homes, with high fences that keep our neighbours out, was the way we were meant to live. I think we're missing something so much more beautiful. So much more meaningful.

I'd love to bake bread with other women. Do chores with other women. Slow my life down, and enjoy those things that I simply view as "work" right now, just another thing on my list of "to-dos". (And oh, that list can look soooo long...!) Turn those things from work into pleasure. It almost feels totally impossible in this day and age. But I think it's possible. It would have it's share of challenges, I am sure. But so many blessings, too.

Maybe one day...
Friday, November 6, 2009 |


Yesterday I took Sam to get his H1N1 vaccination. I sometimes find vaccinating Sam a hard thing to do, and with this one, I really did a lot of research to help Kris and I make our choice.

The more I hear and look into these things, though, the more I feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude for modern medicine. I often think about mothers in developing countries who don't even have the option to protect their children in these ways... and how they would do absolutely anything to have that option. To not worry if their child was going to make it through the night.

The nurse said something really interesting to me. She said that pneumonia, and some of the other illnesses we vaccinate against nowadays, were the cancers that were taking peoples' children 50 years ago. She talked about how many parents buried their children because of those diseases that we now can be protected against. Then she made the comment, "as a parent, if you could give your kid a vaccine against cancer or leukemia, even if there was the smallest possible risk to it, wouldn't you give it?" That really made me think. And made me thankful that with all the unpreventable illnesses out there, that a lot of them are preventable, and treatable. I guess it hits me particularly hard because Sam had pneumonia when he was 2 months old. How many ever years ago, he wouldn't have survived.

Anyways, I know a lot of people who also choose, and have chosen with H1N1, not to vaccinate. I know everyone has their reasons, and I don't mean for this to be an offense to those people in any way. I'm just feeling really good about our choice, and am so thankful that we have that option.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009 |


Kris and I went to the U2 concert in Vancouver last week. It was the tour's last show, and it was freakin' amazing.

It was kind of a miracle we even got there, I feel. We were all sick, Kris and I with colds, Sam with vomiting and diarrhea, and we felt awful. Tuesday, I still felt terrible, and starting feeling really worried about being able to make it all night at a concert. I just prayed. And prayed more. I felt much better on Wednesday, and had a little nap in the afternoon before we left. And thanks to my wonderful Father, we were able to go!

U2 is different than other bands. And Bono is different than other rockstars. It was amazing to go to a concert like that, and it really ended up feeling like more of a worship experience than anything. It is so clear that Bono really loves his Lord. At one point, he was down on his knees with his hands raised towards the ceiling. He talks about meaningful things, like AIDS medicine getting to Africa, immunizations for developing countries*, and the prime minister of Burma who has been under house arrest for 14 of the last 20 years for being a non-violent revolutionary and speaking out.

I had this one moment when I was completely in awe. Not of the band, or Bono, or the stage, or the 60,000+ that were there - but in awe of who my God is. In awe of the fact that He can even capture the heart of one of the world's biggest rock stars. That someone as rich and famous as Bono is my brother in Christ. That we love the same Jesus. God is just that big. And that is totally awe-inspiring for me.

It was really amazing, and worth every penny. Kris and I decided to get tickets to his Edmonton show in June next year, because now we just can't get enough! We can't wait!

* Did you know that Bill Gates pays for 85% of the immunizations that go to developing countries? It's all because Bono got up in his face - "You're rich, what are you going to do about this?!" Now they're good friends, and Bill and his wife were at the concert. We all sang Happy Birthday to him.