Yesterday Rock & Roll Mama (who is giving away a spiffidy-doo t-shirt on her blog at the moment) left me a comment about how other people's lives look "so pretty and shiny. And you imagine that no one ever sees your life that way."
It's like when you're driving around at night and you pass houses with the lights on. Maybe you just spy them through the trees or maybe you get a good look, but either way your brain completes the picture and lo and behold you Just Know what that house is like and how nice it would be to live there. If your brain works like mine, it doesn't include a Shop Vac in the bathroom, junk all over the floor or fuzzy orange and blue stuff in the back of the fridge. Their lives are perfect.
Why do we not see our own lives this way? You know when you write a resume, and you have to think about all the things you've done and describe your strengths? Some of it may seem exaggerated - heck, I may update mine to include studying ballet at a college out west. It's exaggerated, but true.
That's what we're doing when we clean house for company or prepare a meal for guests. No, we don't live like that all the time, but we could if we wanted to. What I want to do, and what I imagine everyone else has already done, is to shorten the gap between our actual life and our life as presented to guests. And to do that, I need to know what to focus on.
Here are our strengths: People seem to like coming to our house. Most of those people are creative and have touched Trout Towers in palpable ways. Chris and I come from interesting families. Our parents have acted in movies, started theaters, produced plays, practiced architecture, studied at MIT, School of American Ballet and New England Conservatory of Music and have traveled around the world. Signs of them are all over our home. Even the parents who have never been here are still HERE.
Most importantly, there is almost always enough food to share with drop-ins and stay-lates and our kids know that we love them more than anything.
What is the shiniest part of your life?