Saturday, February 27, 2010

Two Posts in One

(Yes, I'm aware that everyone reading this post has access to the weather channel. But since blogging seems to be all about what is happening in the life of the "blog-er" I just thought I'd add that little tidbit.)

I'm especially glad that we didn't have some huge outdoor event planned for this morning; like a charity run, an annual yard sale, a community block party or (heaven forbid) a wedding! For my new friend in Canada and others in northern climates you may be shaking your heads in disbelief, "Who in their right mind would plan an outdoor event the last week of February?!" Well, winter is the ONLY time to plan outdoor events in FL because by late April the heat and humidity begin making it absolutely impossible.

Those of us here in the deep south look at pictures of the rest of you having lovely little lawn parties in the spring. We see your delightful, tented graduation parties. The beautiful June weddings in the garden with hydrangeas blooming all around (providing copious quantities of free foliage). And we are jealous!

Our middle daughter and her husband were married two years ago and she wanted pictures in a beautiful garden near here. So, their wedding was January 12th and our biggest weather concern was getting all his family and friends here from snowy New York. Believe me, this year would have been a different matter.

When we lived in NC, there were three months out of the year that required a certain chivalrous ritual. Frank would go outside and "warm up the car" so we girls could make the trip of whatever duration in relative comfort. Here in FL the ritual lives on; only now he goes outside to "cool down the car" mostly to avoid losing any of us to heat stroke. Every climate has its off-season. Smile.

On a totally different note:

I just got back late last night from two days of a ladies conference and I have a question to pose to you "reader friends". Do you think women dress more often for themselves, for men, or for other women? Now, I know that the first and most apparently appropriate response is, "For ourselves - of course!" But before you stone me for even thinking such a thought, let me explain.

You already know that I'm "fashion challenged". So just getting ready for such events requires the steadying influence of one of my daughters. (I'll have to tell you about our packing exploits another time; it's pretty funny stuff.) Then I get to the event and invariably find that it takes me a while to get comfortable with the wardrobe I brought. I go to the first meeting and think, "Oh good grief, they all got the cutesy courtesy memo which outlined what everyone would wear to each session. How did I miss that?!"

Now, usually I'm one of the speakers at these conferences and I comfort myself with the thought, "It's okay, Sheri. They know you're from out of town. They didn't expect you to dress like them."

But this time I was an attendee; stripped of my comfort blanket excuse; standing bare before the other women with their questioning glances which seemed to say, "Doesn't she KNOW that outfit is inappropriate?"

(Whew! That's an inordinate amount of attention to clothing in my estimation.) But I consider myself a pretty confident woman for the most part and if these thoughts bombarded ME this weekend it made me curious about what really goes on in the minds of other women. Hence the question. I'd really love the privilege of a peak behind your eyes on this matter. I tend to think that the more we understand the perception of others, the more compassionate we are with one another.

I'm convinced that in every encounter we have with others, there is some piece of the puzzle I'm missing from their story. If I knew what part of your life experience caused certain, shall we say, "unusual" reactions or choices I would be more compassionate; perhaps even patient.


Maybe that's a good ponder point for us all to take with us to church tomorrow. If you get a chance, I'd love to know your thoughts on this matter. Have a GREAT weekend!

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