Friday, May 30, 2008

The Daffodil Principle

I am always learning things from my dad. He is an amazing man, and full of insight. The most recent email he sent me was about daffodils...I thought it was great! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did...
Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, "Mother, you must come to see the daffodils before they are over." I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead "I will come next Tuesday", I promised a little reluctantly on her third call. Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and reluctantly I drove there.
When I finally walked into Carolyn's house I was welcomed by the joyful sounds of happy children. I delightedly hugged and greeted my grandchildren. "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in these clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these children that I want to see badly enough to drive another inch!" My daughter smiled calmly and said, "We drive in this all the time, Mother." "Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears, and then I'm heading for home!" I assured her.
"But first we're going to see the daffodils. It's just a few blocks," Carolyn said. "I'll drive. I'm used to this." "Carolyn," I said sternly, "Please turn around." "It's all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience."
After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw a small church. On the far side of the church, I saw a hand lettered sign with an arrow that read, " Daffodil Garden." We got out of the car, each took a child's hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path. Then, as we turned a corner, I looked up and gasped. Before me lay the most glorious sight. It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it over the mountain peak and its surrounding slopes. The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns, great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, creamy white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, and saffron and butter yellow. Each different-colored variety was planted in large groups so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There were five acres of flowers. "Who did this?" I asked Carolyn. "Just one woman," Carolyn answered. "She lives on the property. That's her home." Carolyn pointed to a well-kept A-frame house, small and modestly sitting in the midst of all that glory. We walked up to the house. On the patio, we saw a poster. "Answers to the Questions I Know You Are Asking", was the headline. The first answer was a simple one. "50,000 bulbs," it read. The second answer was, "One at a time, by one woman. Two hands, two feet, and one brain." The third answer was, "Began in 1958."
For me, that moment was a life-changing experience. I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun, one bulb at a time, to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountaintop. Planting one bulb at a time, year after year, this unknown woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. One day at a time, she had created something of extraordinary magnificence, beauty, and inspiration. The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles of celebration. That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time--often just one baby-step at time--and learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time.
When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world . "It makes me sad in a way," I admitted t o Carolyn. "What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at a time' through all those years? Just think what I might have been able to achieve!" My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way. "Start tomorrow," she said.She was right. It's so pointless to think of the lost hours of yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson of celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask, "How can I put this to use today?" Use the Daffodil Principle.
Stop waiting.....
Until your car or home is paid off
Until you get a new car or home
Until your kids leave the house
Until you go back to school
Until you finish school
Until you clean the house
Until you organize the garage
Until you clean off your desk
Until you lose 10 lbs.
Until you gain 10 lbs.
Until you get married
Until you get a divorce
Until you have kids
Until the kids go to school
Until you retire
Until summer
Until spring
Until winter
Until fall

Until you die...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

One Step Closer

I just wanted to update everyone on how the adoption process is coming along. We are officially on the down hill side of things (I think!). We have all the papers, and they are all filled out. Now, we just have to get Ken's criminal history record, his child abuse history record, a new birth certificate form, and submit the forms to the court! After that, they will give us our Hearing date and Aden will OFFICIALLY belong to Ken and me! I can't wait!
Thanks to all of you for being so supportive and excited for us during this whole process. We really appreciate it.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

TAG! I'm It

My best friend Nicole tagged me, and now it is my turn to tell all of you a little bit about my cute husband.

What is his name? Kenneth Allen Gentry

How long have you been married? 1 year and almost 3 months

How long did you date? About a year

How old is he? 37

Who eats more sweets? Definitely ME! I have a serious weakness for sweets

Who said I love you first? Ken

Who is taller? Ken again

Who can sing better? Definitely not me...I think I may be tone deaf...but I do a killer opera style if I am in the right mood!

Who is smarter? I would say we both have our different areas where we are smarter than the other

Who does laundry? Ken does his and Jared's, I do Aden's and mine, and Jayne does her own

Who pays the bills? Ken pays the rent, his car payment, and the health insurance. I pay the rest

Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? Ken

Who mows the lawn? Mike (Our neighbor)

Who cooks dinner? I cook during the week, and Ken usually cooks on the weekends

Who drives? Ken...I can't drive with other drivers in the car

Who is more stubborn? Ken would say me, I would say Ken

Who asked who out first? Ken asked me

Who proposed? Ken

Who has more siblings? I do (6), Ken has 3

Who wears the pants? Hmm...probably me!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mother's Day

I just wanted to take a minute and thank all of the amazing mothers out there! I think every day should be Mother's Day. Being a mother is definitely the toughest job I have ever done...but I love every minute of it! I never knew what a tough job it was until I became a mother myself.

I look back on my childhood and I seriously don't know how my mom did what she did. When we were little she made dinner EVERY night, she made half of the clothes we wore, she did all of our laundry, she took us to the dentist every 6 months, she took us to our sporting events and dance competitions, she did everything! I have so much adoration and respect for my mom. She is the strongest woman I know, and I feel very lucky to have her for my mom. I hope that one day I can be half the mother that she is and was.

For this Mother's Day I was totally spoiled by Ken. He got me the greatest gift! It is an iRobot...yeah, you know, one of those robot vacuums that does all the work for you. You just have to push a little button and that thing wanders around the whole house cleaning up! It is amazing! We just sat and watched it for a while the other night. There were two little crumbs that we had our eye on, and we were just waiting for Robert (Yes, we already named him) to pick them up. He works in a very specific pattern, so it took him a minute...he kept going right next to where the crumbs were. But, after a few minutes of waiting (not so patiently) he got the crumbs we had our eyes on! I was so excited about it that I let out a "GO ROBERT!" Ha ha ha, now that I think about it, that is pretty pathetic. Anyway, I love my new gift. Thank you Ken!

Monday, May 5, 2008

The Innocence of a Child

So, the other day I was talking to Ken about going to my cousin's upcoming wedding. Aden overheard us and he said "I want to get married to you, Mama." (I loved that!) I said to him, "Aden when you get bigger, and you find a girl that you love, you can marry her." He quickly replies, "Oh...OKAY...well, I love Jaynie."

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Let's see...

So I created this blog because I thought it would be a good way to keep everyone up to date on our little family. Apparently I forgot that I am so crazy BUSY all the time that I rarely have the time to sit down and BLOG! So...I just want to give everyone a little update on the Gentry fam.

All is well in the Gentry household. Ken is still working the swing shift, and I am working the day shift. We don't see each other much, except on weekends. It is really hard, but we make it work. I hate the idea of Aden going to day care. Maybe one day when he goes to school Ken can get a day job and we can be like a normal family...what is a "normal family" though? I often wonder what is normal these days...

Since we have now been married for a year (and a few months) we can finally take the next step and have Ken adopt Aden! I am so excited for this. I have been doing a lot of research online, and we are hoping to have it done by July of this year. It won't change a lot of things right now, but it will make me feel more COMPLETE. :) I will keep you all posted on how that goes.