Beezus Goes to College

Over the weekend, we met with a friend of ours that is our own personal “expert” on all things college admissions and recruiting. (I used quotations on expert only because if he ever read that, he’d probably be embarrassed or roll his eyes. But to be sure, we consider him to be our expert.) I had to miss parts of the meeting as I chauffeured Ramona back and forth to softball practice, but my mind was blown at how much I didn’t know. 

Sending your kid to college is complicated.

Remember when you went to kindergarten? You went to your neighborhood school. You dealt with the teacher you were given. Did Open Enrollment exist? I mean, I know there were private schools (I didn’t know anyone that went to a private school) but I don’t remember there being many choices about where to send your kid to school. But then I became a parent. There was a lot of hang-wringing. This school has higher test scores. But this school is well-rounded, diverse and still has art, science, etc.

And this is all just kindergarten and elementary school.

It doesn’t get any easier, though. Or maybe it does and I just worry about everything. I mean, we stressed for a YEAR about where to send Beezus to high school.  

This kid, though…she’s worked too hard. Straight A’s and pretty damn awesome athlete? Beezus has earned an awesome college choice. The Dude and I feel that we owe her our hard work in making sure she has as many options as possible.

We’ll do the same for both girls. Because college is so important. It just is.

I’m so grateful that we have such a wonderful and caring friend that is helping us through this process. Even if he doesn’t have all the answer (but he has most of them) he points us in the right direction. PSAT, SAT…ACT. I’ve never known so much about strategy and when and how to take these tests. And if our kids play any sports in college? We learned the pros and cons of Division 1 schools vs Division 2 schools…and Division 3 schools are a pretty damn good option. (If that’s what they want to do, obviously.) SO. MUCH. TO. LEARN. And I’m so glad for the help. I only hope that someday we can pay it forward to another family. Okay, I hope that someday The Dude can pay it forward to another family.

Just kidding. I’ll help too. You know I’m going to need a 17 new hobbies once my kids go off to college.

It’s the only thing that will save me from becoming a crazy cat-lady.

here goes nothin…

stopthinkingI’ve spent a lot of years hiding behind a computer as I blogged/wrote on the internet. I’ve kept my real name off the internet to protect the guilty innocent. I refer to my husband as The Dude. I use nicknames for my children. (Although, who knew that Beverly Cleary would write books about my children back when *I* was a child?) But as I prepare to do something a bit more transparent (or…you know OUT IN THE VERY PUBLIC PUBLIC) I’ve had to think about how to come up with a happy medium.

Which hasn’t been so easy.

First and foremost, my husband and I have jobs outside the home that we both need to keep. I never want to put our jobs and the line. Which is why I will  be taking down all evidence of my old blogging life pretty soon. There’s a reason I didn’t bring over all of my archives. (Complain much, Jill?)

Don’t get me wrong, I’m excited for this new adventure. I am. But these first few days have made me feel like those dreams where you’re at school in your underwear.

Vulnerable. I feel vulnerable.

I’ve put myself in a situation where people I know in real life are going to learn that I have a blog. There are people that may judge me and the fact that I have a blog or what I might say on said blog.

I have to write more responsibly. I have to pay attention to how I write. I have to remember why I love to write even when I have ZERO confidence and think everything I do is crap.

Comfort zone? I can’t even see it right now I’ve stepped so far outside of it.

It’s time for me to learn and grow…and take chances. I need to forget what my comfort zone looks like. I need to remember that I’m going to break my blog sometimes and it’s ok to panic for a minute. (That happened yesterday.) I need to remind myself that this is EXACTLY what I need to do right now because you know what? I like telling my story. I like having my own little place on the interwebs. And I would have never known that without scaring the crap out of myself and taking some chances.

But I also need to be patient with myself. I need to remember that this IS new and uncomfortable. There are definitely going to be some growing pains. And I’m going to break my blog every once in a while. (Please no more times, please.)

It’s all going to be ok. It’s not rocket science. I’m not saving lives here. I’m just telling some stories about my life.

 I can do that.

Listen to Your Mother

Last weekend I had the opportunity to audition for Listen to Your Mother Sacramento. And I am part of this year’s cast. My heart started beating faster as I typed that.

I’ve never done anything like that before.

I’ve had some sort of blog for almost eight years. But I’ve never pushed it beyond a “place where I ramble and tell stories about my family”. Anonymously. I’ve never been ready to become more open and honest…more transparent.

More Jill.

Having the opportunity to write something so personal and healing has sparked something inside of me. It opened this creative side of my brain that has been dormant for a very long time. And because I’m my own worst critic, I’m both insanely proud of what I wrote and also I worry that it’s complete and total crap. Because of course I do.

I feel so humbled to be a part of this show. I am excited, of course…but humbled to share my story. And hoping that I honor the words that I wrote and that I honor the spirit of this amazing cast and show. These stories were first lived before they were ever written. And each story deserves an incredible amount of respect and love. My story is so important to me, but I can’t wait to extend my support to all of the wonderful people who submitted their own words. Because at the end of the day, this is what we’re here to do. Support those around us. Help them tell their story. Love them for having the courage to share a piece of themselves with all of us.

I’m so proud to be a part of Listen to Your Mother. I’m in awe of Nichole and Margaret and all that they have done to bring this to our community. I can’t wait to celebrate motherhood. I can’t wait to listen to the words that this cast has written. And I can’t wait to love each and every one.

I <3 CA

california

I’m a California girl at heart. And driving an hour and a half to Sausalito for brunch makes perfect sense to our family.

But with views like this, can you blame us?

The Dude

bdayflan

March 5th is a pretty popular birthday. Especially in my family. My dad, my husband and my late grandmother were all born on this day.

But today? Today was all about The Dude. I just love the hell out of that guy and I’m pretty proud that he’s mine.

Birthday flan for everyone.