Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Act Your Age? How Dare They!


When I received this in the mail, I thought there must be some mistake. I flipped it over and the woman on the back looked even more mature than the one on the front.

I checked and double-checked, that was MY name on the envelope. Whoever is in charge of researching this magazine's target audience was way off!

I am still in my thirties, and peeved that they think I would be interested in their magazine, which boasts "more thoughtful", "interesting" articles that reflect the "things that matter."

The kind of articles that a woman of "my age" would apparently appreciate and enjoy more than the smut offered in Cosmopolitan, the "out of your reach" couture clothing in Vogue, or the 6-pack abs and buns of steel exercises "you'll only look at, but never do" in Fitness magazine. That wasn't the sales pitch, just my two cents worth.

My husband got a great laugh at my expense as I whined I am not yet a mature woman. I didn't mean I was immature, just not ready to rush into my forties and fifties. Then we both laughed as I skimmed the packet which previewed this magazine that promises MORE, and I found myself saying, "I might like this."

Still, I think I'll relish the last couple of years I have in my thirties. I'll choose to occasionally flip through those twenty-something magazines when I'm visiting the salon, pretending it doesn't irritate me that they make it seem my life will end without the latest designer handbag or perfect lipstick shade.

I'll grow old gracefully, when I'm good and ready, dammit! Until then, I'll blame Oprah for this marketing mistake, and those long, thoughtful, feel good articles in O magazine that I occasionally like to read. I'm sure her people are to blame.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year, New Focus

I can't believe how fast 2011 moved from the horizon to my rear view mirror. I have felt at times like I was running wind sprints with a microphone and notepad in one arm, a baby in the other, not sure if any of us would make it to the finish line in one piece.

I pray mostly for balance in 2012, more family time, and to discover the real me... what makes me feel alive.

I don't believe in new year's resolutions. So I didn't make any. I believe in realizing you can't change the past and you should focus on the future. Having said that, there is nothing wrong with reflection, especially if it helps you focus on a better future.

Just some of the things I discovered about myself in 2011:

  • I am not Superwoman. OK, this one I discover every year, but there is something in my DNA that won't allow me to stop striving to do it all. When will I learn? Maybe in 2012? Maybe not.
  • I crave creativity. I get really excited when I take on a new craft project, discover a DIY project in a magazine or online and see it through to completion, or just help my son think of a creative way to do a school project. I work best, for some unknown reason, under pressure or under doubt (someone else's).
  • I love photography. I want to pursue it definitely as a hobby, maybe more. I've always loved to take pictures, but I wanted to learn how to take pictures that evoke a feeling in others. I took my first photography class a couple months ago and I'm hooked. I will be signing up for my 2nd in a couple days. I'll keep you posted.
  • My career no longer defines me. I have never felt like a job should be who you are, but I've always put my all into whatever I do, until it ends up consuming me. I think a strong work ethic is a virtue, but I have finally learned that I can't give all of me to it...or I'll have nothing left for the people and things that really matter. I'm a mom and wife first and foremost. I hope 2012 will find me working harder to reflect how much my husband and children mean to me.
  • I am strong, determined, loyal, and have a big heart that longs to make a difference.
  • I can not change other people. I can only be responsible for the life I lead. I must practice patience more often, and bite my tongue...even when it really hurts.

Here are just a few of the things I hope to improve on in 2012:

  • Growing closer to God, his word, and what he wants for my life.
  • Showing my kids some of the wonderful things that life has to offer, right outside our door.
  • Making time for friends, exercise, and relaxation.
  • More fun, less work. (although I enjoy working, I need to loosen up sometimes).
I wish you all a blessed and prosperous New Year. May 2012 be the best yet!