21. It makes me smile to look at my pink-painted toe nails while I play in the dirt with my animals.
22. One of my favorite ways to love the people in my life even more is to use the flop-flip exercise. Based on the concept that every negative trait is simply the “flop” of a wonderful positive trait, you’re supposed to write a list of everything that drives you crazy about someone. Then you’re supposed to list the positive trait that accompanies each of those–the “flip” for the “flop.” For example, “unorganized” might also be “free-spirited” and “control freak” is probably also “hard working.” Some of my flops include scatter-brainedness, distractibility, difficulty focusing on conversation, moodiness and short-temperedness. Luckily, Carey knows and loves the flips for each of them.
23. I love my camera ALMOST as much as I love writing. I’m not much of a photographer, but I love the way it allows me to change my focus and notice things I wouldn’t have noticed otherwise. And I love looking back at the visual record of my kids and my life.
24. The great terror of my childhood was that Jesus would come back to collect the saved and I would be left behind. I knew my parents were saved, so sometimes when they were out of earshot or sight I would panic and become convinced that they had gone to heaven without me. I was not comforted by my brother’s presence. I was quite certain that if I was left behind, he would be too.
25. This one should be a really good wrap-up, because despite my slovenly ways around the house I’m actually a control freak and I like nice, neat, tidy endings. But I’m learning to let go and loosen up a bit, so I’m going to leave this one hanging. The end.
25.5 Okay. That’s not the end. Because Abi specifically requested a mention of the fact that I study kung fu, and I completely forgot. So here it is: I study kung fu. So do two of my sons and Carey. I love staff form best because I feel freakin’ cool when I do it. Abi, you’re welcome. The end.