Saturday, September 8, 2012

Practicing Kindness (Heavy on the Pictures)

This is Greta sporting one of her best outfits. I'm on of those people who gets really judgy when young girls are dressed skankily. Her parents let her out of the house in THAT?!? Then I have to look at what my own daughters are wearing, and I think maybe I should try not to be such a judger.

Speaking of judging....

I followed a link on Facebook the other day to a blog I'd never read before. One of my friends had commented on it, and it looked kind of interesting in a "my kind of person" sort of way. (Conservative, Catholic, Stay-At-Home-Mom to daughters. Sound like someone you know?) Anyway, the reason there were comments for me to see was because this blogger had stirred up some discussion on her blog. Not so much about any specific content of her blog, but ABOUT HER BLOG. People were basically saying they didn't like her blog anymore. Except it wasn't that simple... they were being pretty mean about it.

So I read some of her most recent posts, in which she is at least 7 months pregnant, moving, making enormous cross-country car journeys with two kids and no husband (while pregnant) to be in a wedding, where she will wear a dress that's not in her possession, which she just has to hope will fit. and evidently it didn't fit all that well. Short story: she seems to be having a tough go of it lately. To me, it seems like HER OWN BLOG might be an appropriate place to do some public venting. And yes, there was a bit of politics thrown into her posts, a bit of personal views. Not surprising--IT'S HER BLOG. What is really shocking is that her readers were totally turning on her and saying pretty unkind things--one of them actually said "maybe you should stop blogging until after your baby is born." !?!?!?! WHO SAYS THAT?!? Now, like I said, I don't know this person and I had never even heard of her blog before the other day. But after reading a few posts and a number of ouchy comments, I ended up thinking of this poor girl for the rest of the day. And I kept thinking, "Why do we have to be so MEAN?" What's the point, really, of being unkind to someone? It seems to me that going to someone's personal blog and telling them you don't like it and they should change it is a little bit like going to someone's house and asking them to take down their artwork. It's okay to be offended by my religious artwork or nude statues (we don't really have any nude statues) and it's okay to tell me in a gentle way how your views of the world differ from mine. That's life--we don't all think the same way. And CLEARLY a blog is a pretty public place where you are inviting controversy and discussion and should be prepared for that and not have your feelings hurt when somebody does disagree with you. But I see no reason to be deliberately unkind to people for being who they are. We all have stretches of unpleasantness in our lives. (Especially when we're pregnant.) So, maybe her posts have gotten a little pessimitic, a little complainy lately. So what? If it bothers you that much, don't read her. But maybe, MAYBE, where someone said "hey, your blog is really stinking these days" there should have been a comment more along the lines of "hey... are you okay?" It's just a thought. I just wish everyone would be more kind to each other, in general. It's easy to be jerky to people though the internet because it's so non-confrontational and impersonal. But that doesn't make it nececssary, nor does it make it right.

I put that "nor" in there because Greta and Anja have started saying it and it makes me laugh.

And you're probably all wondering why I'm not putting up a link to the blog itself, but it's because I don't even remember what it was! I just clicked the link on Facebook! So, sorry about that.

Here's a picture of (!) ME with Elka from this morning:

I am not usually a fan of pictures of myself. I prefer ones more like this one, where I have no head:
 Martin and I realized yesterday after we'd gotten dressed that we were dressed the same. Oops! So we had Greta take our picture (many times. and then I cut and pasted to get this.) Looks like we both could use a run through the dryer though, huh?

Here's another picture of me with no head:

To show that in the evenings Elka and I sit on the porch swing and suck our thumbs. !!!! I have never had a thumb sucker before and I am absolutely IN LOVE with this little habit of hers. It's so adorable. And ridiculously convenient... this whole "self-soothing" thing is a new to me... Sometimes if she's fussing in a tired way I'll put her down on her blanket on the floor and she'll stick her thumb in her mouth and be asleep within thirty seconds. It's weird. I love it.

Our Labor Day weekend included some heavy rains, thanks to Hurricane Isaac. We told our friend Perkins to come to town from Cincinnati and she did, and we gathered the makings for hurricanes, those fruity rum drinks from New Orleans. We were all set for a full blown hurricane party! We had the alcohol, the music, the weather, and then we got something we didn't expect: fireworks! Coming out of our walls! In our laundry room!! And it was a great drill in preparedness as the big girls were both naked and Elka was napping--we were all out of the house with dresses for the girls to put on in a matter of seconds. And then the firemen came. And they went into my house and they went through my kitchen, and this is what they saw:

 (minus Greta eating a tomato, of course.) My kitchen is usually very tidy. But we had company and I was in the middle of making dinner! The girls had just pulled ALL of the books off the kitchen bookshelf, Martin had just gotten home from the grocery and not all the groceries were put away yet, we were behind on dishes because it was the weekend and we had company staying with us, and the girls were in the middle of a number of different art projects. I was so embarrassed. But at least somebody turned off the burners on the stove while they were in there so the dinner didn't get ruined.

Greta's been writing her name lately and she's been making her 'R's into little people. and all of Greta's people wear their hair in double knots.
 And speaking of Greta.... Martin had ordered these umbrellas for the girls a looooong time ago to keep as a surprise for a rainy day. Surprise! Anja's is pink with ladybugs, but she was already outside when I took this.
And here's Elka.

Mornings are my favorite part of the day, when we're all upstairs and I make all the beds and the big girls immediately jump on them and Elka and I hang out on the big bed together. Have I ever mentioned on here that I have the most comfortable bed in the whole entire universe? It's true. It's comfy enough as it is, but we've added a featherbed to it and now it's just amazing. Which I guess is maybe why last night I had to sleep with most of my body hanging off the bed, clinging to a tiny corner of covers while the rest of my family was sleeping cozily together like puppies. In my bed. ALL OF THEM.  If other people want to have The Family Bed, have at it... but I don't think I agree with this "Family (except for Mama) Bed" that's happening around my house lately. I feed them, I bathe them, I clothe them, I read them endless piles of books every single day, and what do they do? They make me sleep in a toddler bed. Sad face.

1 comment:

Beth F said...

I read the blog you are talking about and really, the comments are so rude. I also find with my blog, I get comments from people who say the rudest things to me, then hide behind "anonymous" or a fake name. They don't realize that IP addresses are logged with each comment and I can look to see if they've commented before. One person who left a pretty scathing comment is a FRIEND of ours from Ohio. What??

She complained that I was getting too political on my blog and wanted to hear more about my family. Do you think I ever get comments from her when I blog about my children? Nope.

Alas, I will still read Cammie's blog and I will still buy snoods from her. :)

And for your blog, I don't comment often, but I do read it and I love watching your little ones grow.