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Slow Mom is in the house

This year I'm resolving to give myself a break.

Because you know what? I like oranges and bananas, and I don't want to feel guilty about the food miles involved with getting them to my kitchen. You know what else I like? A long, hot shower. Don't get me wrong -- I'm not sliding backward. I'm just allowing myself some luxuries, because these are things I feel lucky to have access to.

You know what else I feel lucky to have? Waking hours. A strange thing happened during Portland's ARCTIC BLAST 2008 over the past two weeks -- we slowed down. We didn't drive anywhere, instead we walked. We sledded home our groceries. We played and painted and patched pants. We shunned the TV and computer (for the most part) and read books, wrote stories, played Scrabble and built fantasy lands out of blocks. I taught my daughter how to sew. Sometimes we just sat and looked out the window. The kids spent most of the time in their PJ's. There was no sense of urgency -- just a sense of appreciating our time.

I know you can't live everyday like that (nor would I want to) but I'd like to hold on to some of that slow mom mentality. The challenge will be to do that once school starts again, and it won't be easy. I have to remind myself that:

This is fun: walking to the grocery store, running into people you know and carrying home what you need.

This is not fun: driving to the grocery store and obsessing over everything you put into your cart.

So this year, I'm slowing down and letting go of the small stuff to focus on the big picture. I feel like my family has worked really hard these past couple of years to change our household living habits. Every month when I pull our not-quite-full 32-gallon garbage can to the curb, I feel pretty good about how far we've come. Now I think we can go farther by slowing down, exploring and appreciating what we have. Long live Slow Mom.

Oh yeah -- I'm also resolving to cancel cable. (I need an easy one!)

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