Happy New Year!

I hate January because it is cold. I love January because it is cold. I hate being cold, but I love the slowness which accompanies cold, bleak weather, a kind of sluggishness that would only be tolerate in the wintertime. It is truly a time to reflect and figure out what we really want in the coming year.

I knew the year was off to a good start when I reached in between the headboard and the bed frame and pulled out a pink plastic princess and the television remote. I couldn't give a flying you-know-what about the princess, but the remote has been missing for two years.

All of a sudden, voila, like magic, it appeared! And the crazy thing – the batteries still worked.

For two long years, we had been using the remote from the den to change the bedroom television. In that time we had purchased several computers, Blackberries, and iPods, yet we couldn't be bothered to go out and buy a universal remote.

I already belong to a gym and drink plenty of water, so no need to go there for a New Year's resolution. As far as eating well, let's just say I know that's never going to happen, so no use focusing on that unrealistic goal. I don't need another mountain to climb. But I could use more time, especially more time with my kids.

The problem is that we think by doing things more efficiently we have more time, in reality at the end of the day we don't have any more time at all, we've just crammed more in. So I think the only answer is to simply slow down, and force ourselves not to do so much, even procrastinate on the stuff that really doesn't matter all that much.

One of the things I've been trying to do lately is just listen to my kids. Sometimes I'm in the conversation with them; other times I'm simply a voyeur listening to them process the world around them. I learned a long time ago that while I think I am raising two girls, in many ways they are raising a mother.

"Why is his face so puffy," my four-year-old recently asked about a presidential candidate on television.

"Because he's old," I said matter-of-factly without reservation or judgment.

"Mommy, he's not old, he's just growed up," she said with a grin.

So maybe I'm not old yet, by my daughter's standards at least. But I know I've got some growing up to do. Maybe 2008 will be my year.


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