Monday, December 21, 2009

The One About My Daughter, the Entertainer

I really wish I had a picture to go with this story.

We went caroling last night & one of the places we go to is a nursing home. We all (about 36 of us) pile into their living room and sing in front of the tree. It's a lot of fun. This was the first year for Katie and at first she was shy. But then she started to get into the music. She was in my sling and started dancing in the sling. That got everyone laughing. Then she noticed that we were all holding books and she desperately wanted one and screamed until she got one. ;) Yes, I gave in! The funniest thing is, that right after she got a book, she had it open to a song and was looking at it. She started to sing w/ us! Not words, of course, but opening her mouth and making singing noises. Then we got to "Gloooooria" and she looked at us and started forming a perfect "o" w/ her mouth and singing the "o" parts to Gloria. The whole room was cracking up and I have to admit, she was pretty entertaining! I think she's the first child in our family to sing so early!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The One Without Do-Overs

Michael, my oldest, was sweeping the floor today. He kept missing spots, so I kept sending him back to finish properly. I explained to him that when you have a job to do and you don't do it right you have to fix it. You have to go in and finish it. I told him that when Matt messes up something in his painting or fixing a car he has to go back and fix it. I explained that it happens to everyone. We all make mistakes, miss something or are just plain lazy at times, but we have to go back, fix it and finish the job.

I turned to the sink to finish the dishes and it hit me. As a Mom, I don't get do-overs. I don't get to go back and "fix" whatever problem may arise. I think it hit me because today has been a particularly rough day. A lot of frustration on my part which led to being more stern/annoyed/frustrated with the kids than I usually am. I realized that while we definitely can go back and apologize for our 'bad Mom" moments we cannot undo what has been done. We cannot take away the words we used, the tone we used, the deep & frustrated sighs we use. Children pick up on those cues. They know when we're annoyed or frustrated with them without us having to use words. And while we can try to smooth over the things we've done the problem is we've already done them. We already hurt them. We already frustrated them. We already missed that moment to teach God's grace to them. We already missed that moment when we could have created peace instead of making war. We missed that moment when all they really needed was a kind and gentle answer instead of a frustrated sigh.

Do-overs don't happen for Moms. We can't fix the things we've already done. We can only try to remember to not let it happen so often. We can only try to listen to that still, small voice inside of us reminding us "This is a moment to teach compassion" or a "Moment to show grace". We can only thank the One who shows us grace time & time again and try hard to mirror that to our children.

And thankfully.. children are resilient. The Lord has filled children with such love and understanding. Much more than most adults have. I'm thankful for that because my children sure have forgiven me for a lot of 'bad mom' moments. Hopefully more 'good mom' moments are what will help shape them into who they become.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The One About the Unwritten Pages

I honestly cannot remember exactly the point of Pastor Roland's message on Sunday. However, he was talking about how our lives are like a book w/ the ending currently sealed. No one is able to open the seal except for the Lord because He is the only one who knows what's going to happen with our lives. With the book "Becca Pattullo White" I can look back and 'read' all that has happened, but I cannot read into the future no matter what I try. His point in that analogy was why worry? Who better to know the rest of our story but the Lord? Why not just put it in His hands, knowing it's written. It really made me think about my struggles with anxiety. I worry about a lot of things. I worry probably too much... and I can't see that changing immediately however, the sermon was a baby step in the right direction for me. As I've come across some of the worries of this week I remind myself that it's all in the Lord's hands.

All of this reminded me of the song "Unwritten" this evening. While not a Christian song some of the lyrics are so true. I could go through the lyrics and change them to mean what I'm trying to say, but I think that you can get the point by reading them...

I am unwritten, can't read my mind, I'm undefined
I'm just beginning, the pen's in my hand, ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words that you could not find

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions
Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

Oh, oh, oh

I break tradition, sometimes my tries, are outside the lines
We've been conditioned to not make mistakes, but I can't live that way

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words that you could not find

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions
Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins

Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words that you could not find

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions
Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins

Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The One About a Craft Day & a Snow Day

NOTE: I fiddled with this stupid thing for 1/2 hr now and it's still uploading my photos wrong and deleting them and not letting me put them where I want them... so please excuse the jumbled photos and disorganized look, but I don't want to deal w/ it anymore. I have other things to waste my time with like dinner and kids.

We've had a busy week here! On Monday the cousins came over for a craft day. We made a craft (that is a secret right now) and decorated cookies. Here's a picture of almost all of the cousins together... and one of Katie upset because I wouldn't give her more gingerbread cookies!
I took more pictures than theses, but because blogger is giving me troubles, this is all I could upload to the site. We had fun & you could hardly tell there were 9 kids all 8 and under in the house!

Then, just a few days later, we got our first real snowfall of the season. Of course we all had to bundle up and spend hours outside playing in it. Michael, Nathan & I got into a big snowball fight. Then Nathan, Karah & Erich enjoyed building a couple of snowmen. It was a lot of fun... and a bit chilly!

Monday, December 7, 2009

The One With Flowers

Some people like to get flowers for their birthdays or anniversaries. Some people don't like to get flowers at all. Some people prefer they be arranged when they come or from a special florist.

I like to get flowers 'just because'. I love it when Matt brings them home from the grocery store because I love arranging them myself. It makes me feel all warm & fuzzy inside. :)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The One With the Christmas Tree

We decided to get a real Christmas tree this year. Not only to get a real one, but to go pick one out, cut it down, bring it home, trim it & then decorate it. So this morning that's what we did. We went to a local tree farm and as we were browsing through various trees the lady who co-owned the place came to us and told us of a patch of trees out in the middle of the woods (only a few minutes walk) where we could find white spruce. I was hoping for blue spruce, but those weren't the prettiest, so we decided to walk and see what we could find. We ended up finding a nice big one & then came the issue of how to get it out of the woods, back through the fields and up the hill to the car. Matt decided to take it upon himself, so he literally threw it on his back and walked down the road with it. It was hilarious to see! It looked like a tree with legs.... you could see nothing except the tree & his legs. He even did a little jig for us. ;) We got the tree back to where he could drive the car to get it & then he set it down... I think he deserves a back rub tonight for that!

After the tree cutting they served hot chocolate & cookies for the kids.

We got the tree home and trimmed a little over a ft from the bottom of it and put it up in the
living room. Then came the fun of the lights and ornaments. The kids put a TON of ornaments on it all in the same places, so after they go to bed tonight, I'll rearrange them. :)

I forgot my camera when we went to the tree farm. I'm bummed because Matt & the tree would have been a GREAT picture... but here are some from right after we got home (kids w/ traces of cookies and hot chocolate on their faces) & the tree... fun stuff!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The One with a Gingerbread Village

I found a gingerbread village kit at Target a few weeks ago. It had 5 houses in it... perfect for the kids to each have one! I promised them we'd do it right after Thanksgiving, so right after school on Monday we got to it... I didn't get many pictures of them actually decorating because I was doing my own... I mean helping. :P

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The One With a Sermon, Shopping & an "At Home" Date.

Pastor Roland had a really good sermon on Sunday. He preached about doors... yep. Doors. He started w/ explaining the difference between your front door and your kitchen door. The front door is for salesmen, strangers or acquaintances that aren't real familiar with your home & your family. They knock, you stand in the doorway and talk and then they go and you go on with your life. Then there's the kitchen door... the people who come to the kitchen door are your friends and family. The people you say "Come in! Let's sit down, have a cup of coffee/tea and chat." The people you gladly give up part of your life to spend with them. His point was... what is Jesus to you? A front door kind of guy or a kitchen door kind of guy?


My husband took the WHOLE weekend off this past weekend!! It was WONDERFUL! Saturday we shopped @ Moms store. Between Fri night w/ Rachael & Saturday w/ Matt we are 95% done Christmas shopping!! WOOHOO!! After shopping we came home and decorated the house. Everything except for the tree is done. Matt is never home for that part of Christmas decorating so it was a lot of fun to have him here this year. He was very helpful for getting things up high and coming up w/ ways to make things stay in place a bit better.

Saturday evening we put the kids to bed around 8 and then made cookie monsters. Warm homemade chocolate chip cookies (which Matt made) with ice cream & toppings on top. Yumm... and soooo bad for you! We watched Fireproof together. We had been putting it off expecting it to be hokey... but it wasn't. It was pretty good. It was encouraging to us both. While we don't have the problems the couple in the movie had, we do tend to take each other for granted or forget to put the romance in our marriage. There were some really good points in the movie like "fireproof doesn't meant you won't have fires... it means you can withstand them." It was nice to have that time to spend together. He's been working so much that I've forgotten what it's like to have him home in the evenings... it was nice. :)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Another Rambly One

It's Monday! It's a new week... Thanksgiving week to be exact! I'm excited because this week my brother, who is in college, is coming over for a few nights!! And Matt gets Thursday & Friday off work! It will be good to spend that time together.

We were unexpectedly blessed this week... I got the electric bill to find that we had overpaid and owe nothing until mid-January!! Yay!

Today I clean and get ready for Siah's visit. Hoping for no showings this week. Matt & I are debating renewing our contract when it's up in Feb/March. This is a lot of stress... and the area we want to move to is expensive for housing. We could put an addition on our home for less than a new mortgage would be in VT. But the drive. And the schools... etc. It's hard to decide waht to do... We're just waiting to see what happens at this point. We are still under contract w/ our realtor and won't pay to break that, so if it sells before the contract is up then we'll move. If it doesn't we may just stay put and put an addition on... It's crazy not to have a clear direction... kinda drives me a bit batty at times.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The One Where I Explain Myself

I think I really do have the best husband around. I've been in quite a funk lately... just overwhelmed, exhausted, grumpy... not myself. Tonight he brought dinner home AND is doing the grocery shopping for me so I don't have to go. Let's see how close he gets to the list! LOL! But it's worth it even if he buys a little extra. I'm home hanging out w/ 4 of my kiddos and the shopping is being done for me. He took Levi with him... Levi was so excited as it's been a while since he has been on a "Daddy Date".

I need to make some changes in my life... I'm just not feeling strongly motivated. I don't like it when I'm in this place. I feel as tho friends are only tolerating me and that they'd really rather not be friends. I feel fat and unattractive. I feel like an awful parent, a bad student, a bad Christian, just over all very yucky. I'm not being whiney here... just stating the facts.

Beth is interrupting me for some Mommy/Beth time. She wants to Mario Kart on the Wii. LOL! Guess I'll go see if I can beat her at it. :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

A Discouraged One

I would really love to pretend to have it all together. I'd love to pretend to feel upbeat and confident all the time. I'd love to pretend to put my full confidence in the Lord. The reality is I'm so beaten down right now. I'm so discouraged, frustrated, unsure of direction... I feel like a fish out of water with no way of knowing how to get back in. I feel like yelling and crying and throwing a tantrum to rival those my 3 y/o throws. I feel like crawling into bed and not getting out for a few weeks. I feel like running away from all the stresses of life.

Unfortunately I cannot. I know all the right things to think. I know all the prayers to pray. I know the scriptures to pray or read for encouragment... but my prayers seem to fall on deaf ears. My prayers seem to reach the ceiling and plummet back down to earth.

Don't get me wrong... I'm thankful for many things in my life: my children, my husband, my home. I'm thankful that we have a loving, supportive family. I'm thankful for my salvation and for the knowledge that tho I may not feel Him all the time I know God is always there. I am thankful... I'm just having a hard time focusing on the good at the moment....

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

One With More On Whole Foods

So, like everything in life, switching to a whole foods diet is going to come slowly. It's going to come in spurts and as we can financially. I have chosen to spend a little extra $ on whole grain pastas and flour, which sacrifices some of the quicker snack items and bread I usually get. It may have to change some weeks when I know how busy life will get.

Anyway... tonight's experiment is with apple pie. Crust made with white whole wheat flour (I know, not ideal, but still better than white) & instead of 1 c. sugar I put in 1/2 c. honey along with the apples, cinn, etc. Will let you know how it turns out. ;)

Dinner is hot pockets!! Before you think anything negative... they are homemade and a recipe from my "Naturally Healthy Cuisine" book. I made & froze 2 doz on Monday and am reheating them for dinner. I took whole wheat bread dough and put different toppings in them. The kids liked theirs dipped in pizza sauce (also homemade). Mine had chicken/broccoli/cheese so not so good w/ the pizza sauce.

I think the key to switching to eating more healthy is that I have to make it feasible for us. I can't cook things the family won't like or it will become a battle. I can't only make things that take all day to cook or it'll become impossible. And I can't completely rule out home baked cookies and other goodies or it'll become boring.

I keep thinking of this when it comes to eating (and many, many other areas of my life right now): Everything is permissible, but not everything is beneficial.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Another Venty One About Home Selling

I am trying so hard not to get discouraged right now. Yes, I'm using this blog as a sounding board at the moment... and won't post this one to my FB page as I just need to vent.

I'm frustrated with this whole selling the house thing. A dozen showings, 1 crummy offer... and all we keep hearing is "we like it, but it's too small." or "it's #2 on our list" Our entire lives are disrupted... to the point that I DREAD the phone ringing these days. 2-3 showings/week is exhausting us and having nothing coming of them is so discouraging. We have come home on various occasions to find our computer power bar had been flipped to 'off' (umm.. it was under the desk behind the lock box... WHY was anyone there?), windows left partly open on cold days, the crawl space access in the garage left open, doors left open, lights left on, the REEK of cigarrette butts (we don't smoke, so it's really icky to me)... the list could go on. I know it's the "hazzards" of selling a house, but I feel like my HOME is no longer MY home already, yet I have no excitement of hoping to find a new home yet because it all hinges on the sale.

I'm discouraged. I'm frustrated. I'm worn out. I want life to return to some semblance of normalcy. It has *only* been 5.5 mos.... but those 5.5 mos seem like a long time when your life is disrupted so many times.

Vent over... back to cleaning... yes another showing tomorrow.

Friday, November 6, 2009

The One About Whole Foods

I've been reading a lot of Shonda Parker's books lately. I am really enjoying the way that she writes and am trying to glean as much information as I can from her. The reoccuring theme in her books is that your body is a temple to God and should be taken care of accordingly. She writes how we should be careful about what we put into it, but to do it according to how you can financially and with your husband's & family's likes/dislikes/needs in mind.

So I'm trying to incoorperate more whole, seasonal foods into our diets as money allows. Things can be very tight financially lately, so it isn't going to be perfect, but I'm going to try my hardest.

Today so far:
Bfast ~ Scrambled eggs, whole wheat toast
Snack ~ fresh, homemade applesauce (Yum!)
Lunch ~ baked oatmeal: oats, eggs, milk, maple syrup, baking powder & I put chopped apples instead of raisins because I had none.
Dinner ~ homemade beef stew (unfortunately beef is not organic the way I'd prefer, but a lean cut): beef, browned and a gravy made w/ w.w. flour & water, potatoes, carrots, onions & fresh garlic. & homemade w.w. rolls made w/ molasses instead of white sugar
Dessert &/or second snack ~ homemade whole wheat applesauce cake... which I just tasted and it was yummy.

I know that financially I cannot afford organic foods right now or a huge variety of fruits & veggies... but I'm going to do what I can...

Monday, November 2, 2009

The One With a Mixture of Topics

Recently a friend posted on FB how she has spent too much time trying to fix the negative things in her life than time spent focusing and accentuating the positive aspects. What a thought!! I am very good at seeing the things I need to fix in my personality, my actions, etc... and very bad at seeing and working on the positive things that God has given me. I tend to think if I work on those or accentuate them then it's a matter of pride. But I'm starting to think otherwise. I'm going to give this some more thought.

My mouth is still throbbing this morning. I had my wisdom teeth pulled on Friday... it's Monday now and I'm so ready for the pain to be gone and to eat something normal again. On the plus side I lost 5 lbs! LOL! I'm sure it won't stay off... but I wish it would.

Alyssa was up ALLLLL night last night. Literally. Hourly. I'm not sure why? No new teeth in her mouth, no fever, no cold, nothing visibly wrong. The only thing I can guess is that she hasn't poo'd since Thursday. :( My milk supply has dipped drastically in the days since having my teeth pulled and my milk supply was her main source of liquids. She won't drink water or milk. We just barely found a juice she'll touch, but even then not a lot. I feel so bad for her... and frustrated at the same time. I NEED sleep to help my body heal... rested bodies heal much better than exhausted bodies.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The One About the Costume Party

We had a costume party for the girls. It was a lot of fun!! Levi dressed as Luke Skywalker from a certain episode where Luke wears all green. (I admit: I have NO idea what he's talking about... but he insisted, so I let him. He made his own costume) James was Maxwell Smart from "Get Smart" (TV show WAY before even MY time... but the kids love it! lol!) Beth was a bride, Sammy was a sailor & Alyssa was a fairy. Here are some random pictures of the party. :)

Friday, October 23, 2009

The One About Being Sick

I detest this 'cold & flu' season. Right now we have everything that points to the "flu" according to the CDC. Everything on this list except for the first and last which both say only some people get. So we're staying home from Friday school today because of it though I know other people who have similar symptoms are going. We're all on the mend. Have been dealing w/ this for a little over a week... I've had a sore throat now for 6 days. I just realized it's been 6 days! LOL! I hadn't realized that. It's really been difficult to get stuff done because I'm so fatigued, but we're still plugging away getting stuff accomplished.

I just really detest this season... wondered if we should get 'the shot', but the more I research the more I think not. Even the CDC (the link I posted) says that most people who get the 2009 H1N1 have mild cases. I hate that the media throws such a hype into the mix. It makes it harder to make an informed choice w/out the worries in the back of my head.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Another One About Trust

Being the Mom God wants me to be. This has been on my mind a lot lately. Two times in my recent reading I came across the idea that if what I am doing is taking away from my family's needs then perhaps I shouldn't be doing it. This was interesting to me as so much of what I do at the moment is focused on the house selling, house buying, my schooling, and friends. So much of what I do is focused away from the children and I would say it's taking away from my family's needs. Part of me sees that there needs to be a change in the focus... a shift in my paradigm. The other part of me is saying "How?" or "Where?" or "What gives?" My priorities are always to my husband, my children and my home. Not in that order lately... but I think bigger than that my priority needs to be the Lord and the rest will fall into place. I think I'm a bit of a control freak, tho I have never labeled myself as that before. The reason I say that is because it is hard for me to just let go of those things that I feel I need to hold on to and control. Even placing them into capable hands I still give instructions. "Lord, I place this whole house thing into your hands. I'm trusting you to provide as we need." in one breath and "Let it happen SOON, PLEASE" literally in the next breath. That's not really trusting... that's putting stipulations on the 'trust' that I pretend is there.

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Mushy One Combined With a Normal One

I love how connected Matt & I can be at times. I love that he knows my thoughts without me even hinting towards them and he can still finish my sentences. I love how he understands me and 'gets' my goofiness. I love how patient he is with all my 'new ideas' and how he fully supports me in all my efforts. This all really hit me this morning with something so simple. It was 6:30 am and I was nursing Alyssa, hoping she'd go back to sleep. Beth was awake to use the bathroom and then went back ino the girls room. I thought " I wish I could tell her to rest on the couch so that she won't wake Alyssa when I put her back in her bed." but I couldn't say anything because I didn't want to wake Alyssa. Matt walked into the living room not a minute later and said "Want me to ask Beth to rest on the couch so she doesn't wake the baby?" Awwww... see. I didn't even say a word and he was thinking about it. :)

Another showing today. This makes 2 in 3 days. I *think* people have to have a house under contract by the end of October to get the $8000 tax credit, so I *think* it's spurring last minute people on. We had a showing on Saturday and now one today and the open house will be on Sunday. Praying hard that this week someone will bite. My sisters were here this weekend & they were both a bit overwhelmed by how much it takes to keep/get the house perfect for showings! And they had lots of help!! (and WERE lots of help! I can't believe how much extra stuff I got done because they were here!)

Would it be bad to take a fall vacation? I NEVER take extra school vacations other than Christmas or when a new baby is born. But man! I feel like we ALL need a break. I think I might go ahead and call this 'fall vacation week". The kids will be THRILLED.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The One Where God Speaks

Matt & I were given an offer on our house this week and were advised by our realtor not to take it or even counter offer as the type of loan they were trying to get is close to impossible in this state. We took her advice... the offer was ridiculous anyway.

5 days later we found the house we want to buy. It's literally 2 miles from my parents house. It has a loft, 3 bedrooms 1.75 baths, 1.21 acres, a pool, a deck, a woodburning fireplace and is solid. The only work it needs is flooring (which we have covered thanks to Lee!!) and new countertops (unless we love the 80's orange color on them! lol!!) The house has HUGE windows facing south so you get all the southern exposure of the sun. Wonderful in the winter and even in the summer because, as people who know me well know, I LOVE SUN and LIGHT and BRIGHTNESS! Best of all?? The house is in our price range. Oh man...

So needless to say, we both woke up this morning feeling super discouraged. We looked online and saw houses similar to ours going for higher than we're asking. We saw houses better than ours also going for less than we're asking. We're right in the middle and have no real bites. We both literally dragged our family to church this morning. We debated even going as we've been in VT 4 days out of the past 6 anyway and this would make it 5 out of 6. But we felt we should so we did.

We walked in a little late thanks to someone on a Sunday morning scenic drive who was in front of us w/ no passing areas. *sigh* We were discouraged and frustrated and honestly not in the best frame of mind to worship. Almost immediately after we walked in the music leader started talking about how he knows life can get discouraging, especially when we're waiting for something to happen. He said he knows that waiting for God's timing when we want something to happen now can be one of the most frustrating places to be in, but that we should trust that the Lord will make all things good in His timing.

I almost shrugged it off in a way. It could be a word from the Lord for anyone, yk? Plus KT was squirming around and Erich was climbing all over the pew, so I was distracted from really listening with my heart.

Towards the end of the service someone started to speak in tongues. That doesn't happen often, even in our Assemblies of God church. So I bowed my head and prayed quietly that the Lord would make it clear... and then someone else spoke a word. Again "Do not be dismayed." was the topic.

Ok, Lord... I get the point! I am going to try my best to focus on You and Your timing in all of this. I will wait and be patient. I will trust Your timing... even when I want this over NOW. I will wait... I will try not to let the discouragment stay. I will trust.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The One About the Quiet Day

Quiet days are few & far between. Days when we have nothing on the schedule, no where to go and we are at home are a rarity these days. So today I took complete advantage of it. Matt had to work so we didn't go to church. Then Matt took Karah out shoe shopping for her birthday. They had a great time together. The rest of us just stayed home. We cleaned, we played on the Wii, we built tents out of sheets, we built towers of blocks, baked brownies, played games and read stories. What a wonderful way to spend a day of rest.

We really need more days like this...

Monday, September 28, 2009

The One About Joy

It seems the more I attempt to rid myself of negativity the more I notice it in my life. It's something I've been working on for about a month now and TBH, I FEEL more negative than I did before lately. I'm discouraged about the house, I'm discouraged about the market prospects in VT, I'm discouraged that none of this happened before school started or before hubby started working over in VT. I'm discouraged that no matter how hard I try I cannot accomplish all I want to accomplish. I'm discouraged because there are things in my life I want to do for *ME* but I'm finding them difficult or almost impossible to set into reality. I'm discouraged with my weight and over all appearance as this is an ongoing battle for me since having babies. I'm discouraged. I'm tired. I'm beat down. I'm worn out. I'm ready for a change.

How's that for negativity? I know the Lord is telling me to work on it. The girls in my Biblical Virtues class & I were discussing joy and how we are to have joy in good times and in bad, when we're happy and when we're discouraged... at all times. I feel hypocritical to teach those things and struggle so much with it myself.

So here's to Joy! What you focus on is what you get more of, correct? So the focus for this week will be joy! The joy of the Lord which surpasses understanding... it's my strength. (yes, I know it's supposed to be the peace of the Lord surpasses all understanding, but I figure joy does too... especially during stressful times.)

Monday, September 14, 2009

The One About Patience

The children's devotional today was about patience. It was funny timing because I keep saying to the children what my RA in college used to always say "Patience is a virtue, virtue is grace & both put together make a very happy face." I need to incoorperate it into my life as well. I'm feeling a bit impatient about the house. It's been on the market since the end of May and I want it to be sold NOW. It's a mix of feelings because most of the time I feel calm & know that it won't sell a minute before it's supposed to. The timing will all work out just fine in the end & it'll be ok no matter when it does sell. But then we'll find a home that is beautiful and "us" or I start thinking about the commute in the winter and I start to feel impatient and frustrated that it hasn't sold yet.

Patience is a virtue, virtue is grace & both put together make a very happy face.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The One About Being Busy

I was able to counteract the mastitis I felt coming on with a mixture of echinacea, vit C, water & rest. Woohooo!! I'm so glad I skipped having that again.

The kids have a busy/full fall coming up. They are doing 3rd, 2nd & 1st grade this year. They are in a local homeschool group and have lots of fun classes and field trips on Friday. They are in piano lessons on Tuesdays and Royal Rangers/Mpact Girls on Tuesday evenings. It sounds like a very full fall schedule!! I'd like to add a sport in there, but I'm pretty sure there is no extra time with all that, chores, & being a kid. :) All very important... especially w/ us in the process of selling & hopefully moving soon. Erich is even doing the homeschool group and Royal Rangers. He's not doing piano lessons or much schooling... he is only 3!

I also have a full schedule... not only am I overseeing all that the kids are doing, I teach in the homeschool group. I also started midwifery school & am really the person behind making sure the house is in tip top shape 99% of the time. Yah... busy life, but I'm realizing that I enjoy this kind of business much more than boredom. I'm sure once the winter hits things will settle down a bit....

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The One About Negativity

Ridding oneself of negativity. This thought has been running through my head over the past few weeks. I have felt a strong urge to try to eliminate some of the negative influences in my life. It is not surprising that my life is very stressful at the moment. Attempting to keep the house "show ready" while homeschooling 3 children with a preschooler and a needy/demanding baby is a lot for me to handle. Some may handle it well... and I think, for the most part, I do. Especially when I keep my heart and mind focused on the Lord and the 'here & now' and not allow worries to creep in.

I find that when I have a lot of negativity it is harder to keep a positive focus. I've foudn that watching/listening to the news fills my head w/ a lot of negative thoughts, being on my beloved message board has filled my head w/ a lot of negative thoughts, even watching some of my old fav. TV shows have been less than positive for me. So I've "rid myself" of these 3 things in an attempt to focus more on the children and positive things in my life. Slowly I am beginning to feel less stressed, more grounded & more focused on the important things. As long as I can continue this pattern & keep negativity from crowding in....

Sunday, September 6, 2009

The One With A Lot of Randomness

So I haven't been blogging here because I thought I'd try out a new blog... but I'm having a difficult time getting that one to be exactly what I want... I'm SO not computer savvy and that blog is pretty much for computer savvy people. ;)

ANYWAY... we've been having a great time this week!! Matt has been off work so we've been hanging out and enjoying ourselves. We went to Maine for a day, Matt took the older 2 boys camping, We did nature walks, went to the fair & the kiddos got to take a break from schooling so we could just relax and spend time together.

I had mastitis about a month ago and unfortunately I feel it coming back. *sigh* I wonder why this is happening now at 10 mos! Pretty crazy. And no fun.

I was really bothered in church today. There were a group of 8/9/10 year old girls who were running around during the service & being loud. That happens a lot at our church... but what bothered me is one of their moms yelled at her DD to put her shoes on... right in the middle of the worship time! :O I was shocked. Who yells at their kid in the middle of worship? And loud enough for us ( sitting a good 9 + rows back) to hear?! Craziness.

We're having a Labor Day picnic here tomorrow. I hope I feel well enough. I hate this achey yucky feeling. Hopefully it won't get as bad as last time.

I'm trying to decide when to start my studies.... I have too many options, yet not enough options. I can't wait tho!

How's that for randomness??

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Potty Trained One

Yay!! 4 kiddos out of diapers... 1 to go! Sammy is now fully potty trained! He had a small accident in the middle of the night last night, but for the most part is now making it to the potty all the time!! Sometimes he has a small accident and runs as fast as he can to the bathroom, but most of the time makes it in time. YAY!!! Now for potty training Alyssa..... ;)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

An Accomplished Day

I love it when I get a TON done in a day.

Today it's only noon and here's what I've accomplished:
  • Kitchen decluttered and cleaned
  • floors swept and mopped
  • bathroom cleaned
  • 3 loads of laundry washed, dried and folded waiting for kids to put theirs away still
  • dinner in the crockpot
  • Dishes Done
  • Living room cleaned and ready for vacuuming
  • Refilled ink cartridges
  • oven cleaned
  • kids rooms cleaned and ready for vacuuming

Pretty good for just being up for about 5 hrs so far. :) I love days like this!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The 100th Post!

I don't have any deep insights or amazing stories to tell for my 100th post... but I thought I'd mention it was #100 anyway :)

The children got to learn about spiders and how they catch, trap and eat flies first hand tonight. I was sitting on the living room floor feeding Alyssa when I heard a fly that wouldn't stop buzzing. Beth came over and looked and said "Oh... there's a fly sitting on a white thing on the spider web." Well, that started a frenzy of kids running to see what was going on. So I explained how the spider web works and how the spider was saving the fly for later so she could eat it. IT was interesting to see the spider pull the fly all the way to the top of the web, just out of sight when she was done spinning. I had never seen that before....

We've been at VBS Sun, Mon & Tues of this week. The children learned so much and my heart soars as I hear them praise the Lord with the songs they learned. I love to hear them talk about how "awesome God is" and the amazing things He does. I love to hear them say how He helps them on a day to day basis, even when they are sad or upset about something. <3 I love it when a church or people outside of our immediate little family reinforce the things we try to teach them here at home. <3

School is just around the corner!! Truly, for a homeschooler, school is never really done or starting... it just is. We've continued w/ reading throughout the summer and have gotten educational math books out of the library... we learned about science by watching the spider or taking nature walks... school is so much more than book learning and all the homeschoolers I know understand this and take full adventage of all learning possibilities. BUT... School/School is just around the corner. I have all but 2 of my books... I just had to log them now. I'm planning to even do some preschool stuff with Sammy (who just turned 3). He's a bright boy and I think he could at least learn to write his name... :) He knows shapes and colors already, so I guess we'll go a bit beyond that.

Alyssa is calling... is about that time of evening. She wants me to snuggle her down for the night. :)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Another One With Pictures

I always feel good on the days I get more accomplished. When the housework is no longer weighing on me and the plants are happily watered. When the laundry is done and beds are made. When toys are picked up and children are happily playing... it just feels good.

Here are some fun, random pictures of my children. <3

Friday, July 10, 2009

The One With An Update, Moodiness & Book Recommendation

I spoke with our realtor today. She said the people liked the house, but that they want something bigger. But we have ANOTHER showing on Tuesday at 11!! I'm excited that people are actually wanting to see the house and I'm confidant that when the timing is right it'll happen... it's all up to the Lord at this point and in the meantime we are doing everything we can to help. I think that's the way things are supposed to work.

Today is a semi-better day, tho I find myself really struggling w/ moments of frustration. I'm so moody lately... one minute I'll feel fine and the next I find myself frustrated by the smallest thing. grr... it's just so unlike me to be so moody!

I just finished a book w/in less than 24 hrs! Amazing feat w/ 5 kids and an 'on the market' home to keep up. The book is called "A Lucky Child: A Memoir of Suriving Aushwitz as a Young Boy". What a wonderful, amazing book. I highly recommend it (and for those who know about my thoughts about Clara's War... this is a much more tame book than that one. Detailed, but not overly detailed like Clara's War was. Tho I'm not saying that was a bad book. It was a great book as well, just so very detailed. )

Thursday, July 9, 2009

New Happenings

  • Rachael was here. :) It's always nice to visit and get out of the house almost alone! I joked w/ my sister and said I only had to bring 1/6th of my work with me. (Just the baby!)
  • We had another house showing yesterday (Wednesday). No feedback yet... I have to call or email my realtor tomorrow anyway, so I'll ask if she heard anything yet.
  • Hubby is really struggling w/ his job right now. :( I wish I could do something to help him. His boss is a pretty moody guy, so it's hard to know from one day to the next how he's really feeling. Today he straight out lied to Matt and Matt knows it, but doesn't want to confront him. I think he should... (But I wouldn't because I'm not assertive enough.)
  • I'm really tired and grumpy lately. Not sure what's going on with me... probably just normal stuff, but I'm getting annoyed with myself.
  • My herbs are doing well... yay! Tho there is still something nibbling my basil. grrr..
  • Oops... Sammy is asking for a 'cuppa'. gotta run.

More About Dieting

I think that one of my biggest struggles with loosing weight is emotional/stress eating. I'm not even sure why I do it, which is what makes it more difficult to control. I KNOW that food will never 'cure' whatever it is I'm struggling with or stressing out about, but it's as tho logic flies out of my brain when it comes to this.

Weight was never even a thought on my mind in my teen years and even in my first year of marriage... until I had my first baby. Since then it's always on my mind and a constant battle that I have yet to overcome even once since I started having children.

And the stress eating is the hardest because I don't care in the moment... but then I feel guilty, which makes me want to eat more, which makes me feel guilty... It's all a vicious cycle that needs to end, but I'm not exactly sure how to make it end.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The One About Meditation & Peace

"Ouch!" went the checkbook this morning.. I paid the bill for the well. But I'm praising the Lord for his provisions!!

Im having a quiet moment right now. We're outside, so the children are occupied swinging and playing. The baby is sleeping peacefully... I can hear her deep sleepy breaths on the monitor next to me. It's so peaceful.

I've been thinking a lot lately about what it means to meditate on the Lord and on His word. I think I may have mentioned it before... tho I'm not sure . Sometimes I can't quite remember what I blog here and what I write in my paper journal. LOL! What does meditating on the Lord mean exactly? To meditate means to reflect. To engage in thought or contemplation. So if we are to meditate on the Lord and his Word we are to reflect upon Him and contemplate his words. I know that I get so caught up on the day to day busy-ness of life and often only take those 15-30 mins of devotions after the children go to bed. I go through the motions of prayer before meals, but I'm not really reflecting on the Lord during those times. I've decided to change this... starting small. I'm going to put a verse that really touches me up on our dry erase board in the kitchen to start with. I'm always looking at that board so it'll remind me... I long to be in a real relationship w/ the Lord... not just an aquaintance relationship.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Quiet Day That Wasn't

This morning I wanted to go out and go strawberry picking, but when I mentioned it the children begged me to stay home today. We've been going a lot lately so they really wanted a day at home and I agreed.

At 9 I got a phone call from the realtor saying someone wanted to see the house at 10!!! Oh my... I asked it to be 10:30 instead to buy myself an extra 1/2 hr, which was a good thing. We went into super speed and cleaned like crazy. Vacuum, dusting, dishes, laundry, sweeping, mopping, scrubbing.... oh boy! I was thankful that the house is decluttered so it looks good once we did all of that. We grabbed the dog and got out the door at 10:24. WHEW! We went to the playground and then came home and hour later.

Then I got a phone call from my Mom... my step-dad is planning to come over to recarpet the living room this afternoon... which means that we're going to have to be gone again! Yikes! Poor kiddos... they really wanted to stay home today (and so did I, really.)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

The One with Me... Without Mud!

My 7 y/o took these photos of me yesterday & I thought I'd share. Me without dirt all over me! LOL!

Friday, June 26, 2009

The One About the Porch Garden

Since our house is on the market and our soil doesn't grow veggies very well (or perhaps I don't tend garden well enough??) I decided to plant some tomatoes and herbs on the porch. I had planned to do lettuce too, but after I was given some extra tomato plants I decided to plant those instead of the lettuce. I didn't have enough boxes for both. Here are some pictures... as you can see mybasil looks very sad, tho 1/2 of it rallied w/ good sunshine yesterday!

And Beth wanted me to take a picture of the flowers as well: