Friday, February 25, 2011

I watched a Wife-swap TV show and learned something!

I was at the dentist’s office the other day when I watched an episode of “wife swap.” It was really interesting. I may have seen one other episode my whole life.

One of the women is a high powered executive and Harvard graduate. She has four kids and works full-time. The other woman is a stay-at-home mom with six kids all of whom are home-schooled.

The women’s reactions the first week in the new household

The Harvard lady was overwhelmed by the amount of housework and chaos in the house. She felt like there were no boundaries and no guidelines by which the day progressed. She felt like the husband wasn’t very helpful and really relied heavily on his wife to do a lot of the housework.

The other woman was close to tears the morning she had to drop off the younger children in day care and go to work. She felt like that was so much out of her comfort zone that she really couldn’t cope. She felt that the house lacked fun and it was extremely regimented.

What they decided to change …

It was very interesting to hear the perspective of these women when placed in the other woman’s shoes. The Harvard woman ended up finding a day care center for the younger children so that she could home-school the other children in peace.

The other woman ended up taking all the kids out of school and decided that what they needed was to learn in a different setting. She took all four of them to a farm one day. She bought all sorts of musical instruments and taught them how to play. She bought chickens and told the dad that he needed to build a chicken coop.

The amazing thing was the both woman acknowledged how much they missed their spouses and kids. They both infused so much of their comfort into their temporary new life.

However, it was the husband’s reactions that were fascinating. The dad of the six children learned how to cook and do laundry. He realized that he needed to help around the house and truly pull his weight. The dad of the four children couldn’t deal with the home-schooling bit, but acknowledged that their household was a well-oiled machine however it lacked fun.

The epiphany from this swap

When the wives returned to their homes, they kept some of what the other woman had suggested. Their biggest “aha” moment was realizing how good they really have it and how much they missed their children and husbands.

I feel for them the true experience was in trying something new. It was going somewhere totally unfamiliar to them and taking on something they thought they knew how to do. They had to realize that every situation has it’s blessings in it if they were to allow themselves the gift of being open-minded to another way of doing things.

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we all allowed ourselves the opportunity to learn something new? All we need to do is try doing it a different way.

Your thoughts?

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I’m going to be more open-minded from now on!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Juliano - the greatest dog in the world

Our second pup made his way back to heaven today. Juliano or Jules as we affectionately called him was the best dog anyone could have ever hoped for. My husband got him a few months after we started dating. Our nights of going out and partying were replaced with taking Jules to the dog park. Something I wasn’t very happy about initially.

He was bred to be a show dog. I am certain that he was a king in a previous lifetime. He stood with such regality and nobleness that there was no doubt in anyone’s mind, he was of noble blood. Anyway, after a couple of months of him disrupting our singles lifestyle, we sent him back to his breeder for her to “show” him. That was actually part of the contract that my husband had with her.

I didn’t realize how much I grew to love him in that amount of time. I missed him so badly. We went to pick him up and he stood on his hind legs and hugged me. It was the most amazing sight ever. We all thought he was half human anyway in his ability to display emotion.

He loved being hugged. He would let out a very content sigh when he was close to us. He loved sleeping on our bed and loved squishing me into the fetal position. I slept like that for months on end. We never put a stop to that until our son was born. He was the ultimate protector. When I was pregnant he would stand between me and whoever I was talking to. He never let anyone get near me and actually bit the mailman when he tried to hand me a letter. What an awesome dog.

He loved playing catch. That was something that he could do for hours. He loved sitting in the sunshine and soaking up the heat. He absolutely loved eating salmon. That must have been his favorite food to eat. We living by a small lake for a while and he would find the fishiest smelling spot and roll around in it. He was the absolute best dog with kids. My friends would worry about their kids around him and my answer would always be that if you stuck your hand in his mouth he wouldn't do anything. He truly was the most gentle dog ever.

He was a sneak too. He once ate through a pair of snake skin red and black shoes that I had bought from New York. He ate through them and left them in the box. He loved getting the squeaky part out of toys and toss it to the side. He would chew through the toy like a surgeon. You would have to look hard to find out how he got it out. He once caught a mouse and kept it in his mouth alive until I screamed my head off and freaked him out.

I could go on and on about how much I love this dog and how much I’m going to miss him. I would probably fill pages and pages but it still wouldn’t be enough. No words can truly describe how I felt about him and how much I am going to miss him. He truly was the greatest dog anyone could have prayed for.

So, Jules, my puppy dog, I wish for you the ability to chase squirrels and catch mice again. I wish for you peace and happiness.

I love you,
Your human mommy