Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fall Festivities

My girls love fall. They love the chill in the air, however small that might be. Seriously, the first day that it was a little cool outside in the morning, they announced that winter was on its way, and they needed to wear gloves, scarves, hats, etc. They also loooooove fall festivities...time at the local pumpkin patch (pictures are sadly lacking due to a kaput camera battery & an inability to locate the charger) to bounce in bounce houses, play amongst the pumpkins and the hay mazes, pumpkin decorating, and costume-making and dressing up. Yeah, I have two rules about costumes: (1) First & foremost, nothing gruesome or scary, and (2) Costumes should be made, not bought, and if possible, be a character from a book. With my crafty girls, this just enhances the enjoyment. Enjoy the pics below:
As you can see, this girl crafts well with nothing on...actually, I request it. Oh the messes she can make, and oh the laundry woes. It's easier to get the mess off her skin than it is to get it off her clothes.
Alyssa's completed pumpkin. I cannot express in words the joy it brought her to create this pumpkin. Seriously, she concentrated hard, and was absolutely a peach to be around upon the completion of this masterpiece! Shanan enjoyed herself, too, especially the opportunity to make use of the glue gun. Although notice, she has clothes on. :) She is naturally a bit tidier than her sister.
Different pumpkins, different personalities. But both girls had an absolute blast exercising their creative genuis.
Meet Pippi Longstocking...times two...or Wendy, as Steve kept calling them and asking them to explain why their burgers are square and not round!

First Job

Okay, this post is way overdue, but I finally stole a few moments (thanks to a baby who was up way too early this morning) to upload pics and get the post out. My girls landed their first job in October. Their first real taste of responsibility! Our next door neighbors have a schnauzer and asked my girls to take care of her while they're out of town. Translation: feed & water twice daily, play with, and take on walks. They've done amazing, really. Honestly, the only issue we've had is getting up early to feed her after staying up too late partying with friends and family. Okay, poop scooping the first day was a challenge for Shanan, no big surprise there. However, I got out the "medical grade" vinyl goves, and then she was fine. :) There have been two occasions that I've had to feed her for them, due to inability to awaken & a playdate, and they're doing extra chores to compensate, because, as you can see, they were paid well! (See those big smiles as they hold their money in their hands!) They've taken the responsibility seriously, and I'm really proud of them! Way to go, Shanan & Alyssa!! In fact, they did so well that they got an opportunity to take care of Molly again, and make a few more bucks!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Brave, Insane, or Just Plain Stupid -- You Decide :)

My next door neighbor gave me 8 free tickets to the Fair late Friday afternoon. It seemed a waste to not use the tickets, and since we hadn't been to the Fair yet this year, I decided we should go. Two problems: (1) No husband and (2) This weekend was closing weekend of the Fair...meaning use or lose the tickets...and also meaning that everyone and their mother and their long lost distant cousins were at the Fair, too.

Soooo...I called up my sister to see if she wanted to go since we'd considered going the previous week but cancelled due to rain. I'm not sure what she was thinking, but she accepted. For those of you who don't know my sister Wanda, she has three kids, two-year-old twin girls and a two-month-old. You do the math...two adults (her hubby wasn't available this weekend either) and six children total. Now for some reason, our friend Matt (whose wife Leslie and girls were out of town for the weekend) took pity on us and he and his two boys met up with us, for a grand total of 8 children, ranging from 2 months to 7 years, and 3 adults. We started out at Whataburger for a marathon feeding of little people (seriously, what were we thinking here because by the time the bigger ones were done eating, the babies needed to eat again, and Thavyn is still in the eat, poop, and eat more stage). Like a herd of turtles, maybe even snails...

Somehow, we actually made it to the Fair, and managed to board & disembark the tram without losing any children or personal effects. We even saw a few animals, of which the goats were clearly the highlight, and saw the Killdares perform. That's about all we could manage before we trudged our weary selves back across the parking lot (skipping the tram this time, thank you very much!) and back home.

My children attempting to lead around their two year old cousins...and not lose them in the crowd.
The good times for the twins...feeding the goats! Although, as Wanda put it, minus one very long car ride, a visit to Uncle Glen & Aunt Cindy's in SC yields an even better opportunity with a lot less hassle!!Hey, these kids look like they're having fun!
Even more fun, snacking & getting ready to listen to the Killdares.

Had to include this one. Note the six year-old in front, very pleased to be riding in the stroller!

My Genna here, contentedly playing with her toes on her left foot (apparently there's something special about the left one). You'd never know she yelled for the entire car ride to the Fair and two-thirds of the ride home!

Monday, October 20, 2008

For Your Reading Pleasure

Okay, I finally caved and decided to play this game as I can see that people are visiting my blog only to discover that I haven't updated in awhile. Not that I have nothing to write about, but rather, I'm having trouble chasing my thoughts down & getting them out in a coherent fashion. So here goes...

I am: a child of God.
I think: way too much.
I know: Jesus is the way, the truth and the life.
I want: to live a life of joy.
I have: a cat on my lap, purring and kneading my belly.
I wish: I always remembered how blessed I am.
I hate: dirty floors and lies.
I miss: carefree days of youth.
I fear: missing God's best for my life.
I worry: about stupid stuff all the time.
I feel: a little melancholy at the moment.
I hear: the hum of the refrigerator.
I smell: so well it irritates my husband.
I crave: intimacy with God.
I search: for evidence of God at work in my life.
I wonder: what my kids will be like when they're all grown up.
I regret: things I say.
I love: dimples and baby laughs.
I ache: for the brokenhearted.
I care: too much about what others think of me.
I always: overanalyze.
I am not: a very optimistic thinker.
I believe: that Jesus is the Son of God.
I dance: not very well and not very often.
I sing: not very loud and only for my kids.
I don't always: do the right thing.
I fight: when my feelings get hurt.
I write: when I need to process life.
I win: hardly ever.
I lose: my train of thought all the time.
I never: eat at McDonald's if I can help it.
I confuse: myself and others.
I listen: but not as well as I used to, I think. Kids...distractions...
I can usually be found: with my girls.
I am scared: at night sometimes when Steve is gone.
I need: to go to bed.
I hope: my kids will know & follow Jesus.
I am looking forward to: Steve coming home.
I am glad: kids are so forgiving, and God's love is unconditional.
I am happy about: getting more sleep at night.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Body Talk

Quotes of things being said around my house these days...

  • "Sometimes it looks like you have splinters all over your body," commented Alyssa, in regard to my spiky legs.

  • "I'd looooove to have thighs like that when I grow up!" insisted Shanan, speaking of Genna's thighs.

  • "I just love your belly!" I totally can't believe Shanan actually said this & genuinely meant it. She does indeed love all things soft & squishy, and I'm grateful that someone loves it. ;)

  • "What would your belly look like if you had ten babies growing in it, all at the same time??" I don't even remember who asked, but the visual in my head isn't pretty!!

  • "Sometimes, people might think I'm 'fashion' 'cause when I stretch, sometimes I stick my booty out." I'm sure you know who said this. I asked if sticking one's booty out makes them fashionable, and the answer was, "No, but I noticed that people who are 'fashion' sometimes stick their booty out a lot." Okay, interesting observations from a five-year-old. She's a people watcher, she definitely notices what is going on around her, and she files it away and it pops out of her mouth later. Be very aware of what you say & do in her presence...I will hear about it later. ;)

  • "The part about my body that I don't like is my heels." Another Alyssa comment. First of all, what's not to like?? Secondly, heels, seriously, if this is where the dislikes begin & end, she is one lucky girl!! :) Apparently, she doesn't like the fact that her heels push down the heels of her shoes when she puts them on and leaves a crease in the heel. A problem that could be solved by loosening her shoelaces more, I might add. But then, according to Alyssa, that might count as being "too careful." ;)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

And Life Came to a Screeching Halt...

At least that's what it looks like based on the lack of recent posts on my blog. ;) Au fact, it's been busy. With what, you may ask?? Good question...a whole lot of nothing it feels like to me when I look around at days' end at the house I claim as my domain. However, if I think, I can come up with a few items that might be of interest. ;)

  • Rolling Around -- On Sunday, Genna rolled over from her back to her tummy. And when I placed her on her back again, she did it again. And she's already rolled a few times from tummy to back. With this new accomplishment, there has been much, much disruption to sleeping & eating habits, which equals disruption to my life. She's been fussy this last week!! And she's studying yours truly with increased attention again. Last night, she gazed at me so intently from her father's lap that I would have felt incredibly uncomfortable if she were anybody but my very own baby...and even so, it was a bit unnerving! Steve put his hand in her line of vision, and she kept fidgeting & started fussing while she attempted to find me again.

  • School -- Off to a late start this year due to this thing I call life, which I have discovered is only predictable in its unpredictability. We officially started full-force this last week (although we had been doing bits here & there before that), so now we're officially on week two. that short amount of time, I've already had to "revamp" the system once. Figuring out what works is a work in progress. And honestly, the most challenging part of homeschooling, and yet the best part about homeschooling, is character development (that would be both my kids & my own). There's nothing like being purposeful about teaching your own kids to highlight their weakness as well as your own. Ouch!!!

So there you have it. I really must be going so that I can run my day instead of having my day run me. :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

What's Your Reason For Eating Marshmallows???

This morning (note, morning), Alyssa asked me if she could eat a marshmallow "before they get worn out." Didn't know that could happen to marshmallows! Now...what's your reason??

Monday, September 1, 2008

Labor Day

"Is this the day when lots of babies are born?" asked Shanan.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Eleven Years Today

In Honor of Our Eleventh Anniversary, Eleven Things I Remember About Our Wedding Day:

1-Sweating for outdoor pics at 9:00 in the morning! (yeah, you gotta love Dallas in August, see the shiny faces??)

2-Watching my dad, who never drinks, guzzle a glass of champagne before walking me down the aisle to give me away

3-Being deliriously happy during the ceremony

4-Realizing that the dinner served at the reception was not the dinner we had chosen in advance, but also realizing that it just didn't matter!

5-Getting cake shoved in my face & up my nose...and then dishing out the same to you...and trying to clean it all off afterwards

6-Finding out that my family only got crumbs of the wedding cake but not being able to do anything about it because the servers served the head table last & cut the pieces of cake too large...

7-Realizing that a trip to the bathroom while wearing a wedding dress is not a one-person adventure!

8-The fish on the tables at the reception and then hearing those same fish all night in the hotel room (who knew fish make noise??).

9-Fruit Loops in my dress, hair, and everywhere (not exactly the traditional choice of what to throw at the bride & groom as they depart)

10-Tighty-whities dragging along behind the car...

11-Relief that the planning & execution of the whole event was DONE!

But wait, there's more...Eleven Things I Love About You, Honey (In no particular order):

1-I love how much I've seen you grow spiritually over the course of our marriage.

2-You're a phenomenal dad, the happy, fun, wrestling dad that our girls need.

3-You might not cook, but you're given me great freedom to obtain the tools I need & desire to help me do the job better & more efficiently. And you don't mind leftovers!

4-You make me laugh. I'll be remembering the request for duct-tape to tape your toothbrush back together after the handle broke! (No, I didn't honor the request, just in case you're wondering. We can afford another toothbrush, after all!)

5-You're committed, to me, to the girls, to God.

6-You're not ruled by your emotions (at least not on most days). Oh, how important this is in a houseful of girls! ;) We need at least one clear-headed thinker amongst us!

7-You're a hard worker, and you provide very well for your family. We never lack anything we truly need.

8-I love how you treat me extra special when you know I'm pregnant with your child. (And no, I'm definitely not pregnant again!)

9-I love how you've gotten better at washing dishes. ;)

10-You love to travel...but you love to travel with me best of all!

11-You chose me!!! And I'm so glad you did...and you still do!

May there be many more years of making memories together! I love you!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

It's Official - She Laughed!!

She just laughed!! Sometimes just a cough sputters out, but sometimes she actually laughs! What a sweet sound...may there be many more of those to come!


It seems that little people are growing up all around me, even without my telling them to do so! I remember pushing Shanan towards the next milestone because that's what you do with firstborns, right?? ;) I hope she forgives me when she realizes it. ;)'s a list of recent accomplishments:

She is my number one baby helper. She's amazing. She changes wet diapers, burps & soothes a fussy Genna (better than her daddy, I might add).

She is sooooo helpful in the kitchen. Last night, she even bailed on a wrestling match with Dad to see if she could help me with dinner. Wowww! I am one lucky mama! She is a great vegetable peeler & slicer. And she's learning how to make things like noodles & eggs. And she's not intimidated by multi-step instructions that involve both removing items from the fridge, warming them in the microwave, & assembling on a plate...unlike a particular male in the household, not naming any names, of course!

And another accomplishment of the summer, shared by both the big girls...learning to crochet, at least to finger crochet a chain and crochet a chain with a hook. I admit we didn't get the single crochet mastered yet, but that's my fault (I ran out of patience). Perhaps on another day...

She has learned to tie her shoes. It all started when she came to me about 2 weeks ago & showed me the bow she had tied in the back of her dress. Yes, I did say back. How she managed her first tying experience behind her back without being able to see is beyond me. But she did it, and we confirmed it by tying her shoes next.

She learned to jump rope this summer! In place, while moving, in the house & on the sidewalk. She's quite good, and she taught herself.

She can change poopy diapers. Need I say more?? She's an amazing little girl to have around because she's not scared of a little poop. ;)

Genna - Of course, she's smiling, and growing. Steve thinks he heard a short, little laugh. I can't verify that it actually happened, but either way, I know that it won't be much longer before we hear lots of chuckles, mostly for her sisters, I'm sure. She coos like a dove and is beginning to squeal a bit, as well. She's also discovered her hands. She goes cross-eyed staring at them, and she loves to pull them close & suck on them. And just today I noticed that somehow, she's actually scooting across the floor. Definitely not rolling over, but by kicking her legs & digging her heels in, she is working her way across the floor. She's not even 3 months old yet!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

"I hope it's not Dad."

The other night we were watching coverage of the Olympics on t.v. They interrupted coverage of the games for an interview with our president, George W. Bush. I explained to the girls that he is the current president of our country, but I also mentioned that there would be an election in a few months to choose a new president. There was a bit of a pause, and then Alyssa said, "I hope it's not Dad." "You mean you hope Dad's not the new president?", I asked. "Yeah," she responded. I thought about it for a second (while also trying desperately to disguise my amusement), and replied, "Yeah, I'd have to agree with you. As much as I like Dad, I don't want him to be the next president, either!"

Life's Not Fair

We always know it, but we certainly feel this truism more acutely at certain times than at others. Although I most often hear this uttered by kids over simplistic issues, this morning I'm thinking of the big stuff, the stuff where we have no real choice but to let God work out the details because it's bigger than we can manage. Specifically, I'm thinking of the parnership with God to bring new life into the world. Why do some women get to do it and others don't? Why do some get to do so with much ease & for others, the sacrifice is so great?? There are women who have lost babies before they even knew them. There are others that get a baby in the end, but the path to get there is difficult. I have sisters that have nearly lost their own lives in the process of bringing new life into the world. That, is not fair, is it?

Today, my thoughts are focused on my sister Wanda. And for once, I'm not thinking that somebody else got the better deal here. Although I have done nothing to deserve it, I've had a comparatively "easy" time of it when it comes to pregnancy & birthing & healthy babies. Wanda, on the other hand, has not. Though it is nothing she has done, she has had two high-risk pregnancies, with complications galore. She has two beautiful little girls after spending her last two months of pregnancy in the hospital with daily monitoring, and now she has a handsome little guy who is still in the hospital a week after his birth following placental abruption. Although I trust he'll be okay in the end, the path has been a bit rocky.

It was just last Tuesday morning that I got the call that Wanda, 35 weeks pregnant with placenta previa, "bled out." As I drove over to her house, I was calling family & praying, and God comforted me with this song, "Oh No, You Never Let Go." Life is NOT fair, but when the ride feels hard to bear, even impossible to bear, He is with us, holding on, and when it feels just right, He is there, and all the times in between, He is there. I pray that you feel His presence more strongly today than ever before, Wanda & Tracy. I'm sorry, so sorry that you are having to go through this. I wish I could snap my fingers & it would be over, I wish I could hold you in my arms & sing you a song & make it all better like I can still do with Alyssa, but I cannot, and so the even better choice here is to ask God to do what I cannot. He is capable of handling the big stuff & the little stuff, and it is already obvious that He was there in the midst of the storm on Tuesday, lining up the details. He will never leave nor forsake you. Love you are being lifted up in prayer by many.

Monday, August 18, 2008


It's been awhile since I posted, and a lot has transpired in that time, from crises that no one cares to repeat to whirlwind trips out of town with fun & festivity. Much to write about, not much time or energy to do so. However, if I can wrangle my hubby away from the computer a bit more (it's all tied up when he works from home), and I can relocate a few more brain cells that I lost with this pregnancy & postpartum & in the many hours of driving this weekend, I have some pics to post of my newest nephew. Words cannot express how grateful I am that he is here, he is okay, and my sister Wanda is, too. And bed, to bed.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Kids Say the Darnedest Things

Speaking of postpartum shape, Alyssa got a good chuckle out of me yesterday. In search of new shirts, I hauled all 3 children into the teeny little dressing room & was trying on an assortment of shirts in various styles & sizes. I was feeling a bit frustrated at my lack of success when Alyssa announced, "Your boobs are just too big to look good in any of those." Yes, there were others in the dressing room, and no, I've never heard those words used to describe myself at any point in my life. Yes, I laughed. And while these same children can inspire great frustration on my part, they also help me to remember how to smile & laugh heartily at the times I need it most. After all, they were the first ones to tell me that I was so skinny just days after Genna was born. Don't all new moms need to hear that, 'cause the reality is that although we feel much thinner after giving birth, most of us are nowhere near being able to be described as such. :) So even though they haven't exactly been charming today, I think I'll keep 'em! :)


Yeah, I'm not talking about the thing you sit on. ;) I'm talking about that propensity to be perpetually two steps behind where you think you ought to be. This morning I was so tired that I dreamed about doing the thing that I should have done yesterday. Except then I opened my eyes & realized that it was a dream, and I'd better get out of bed & get moving. Realizing I'd surely function better after coffee, I proceeded to make it, only to hear the beep saying it was ready about 20 seconds after I had pushed start. It really couldn't be ready, so I went over to examine and discovered that I had missed pouring the water from the carafe into the reservoir. Oops!

So back to the behind bit, I'm behind on blogging, behind on housecleaning, behind on my last few thank you notes from Genna's birth & the kindnesses that followed, behind on being fully prepared for the school year, behind on cleaning maternity clothes out of my closet, behind on finding new shoes for my big girls, behind on finding the new style & size of clothing that fits & flatters my new postpartum shape. Yeah, I'm just behind.

Oh well, for today, I shan't get too out of sorts about my inability to catch up 'cause I bet I'm not the only one. ;)

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Kudos to Amanda

I'm sure you've noticed that my look (actually, my blog's look) has changed. Someone with more skill and creativity than yours truly is responsible for the new look. Thanks so much, Amanda!!

New Mealtime Strategy

I looked at the clock today and realized it was fast approaching 2:00, and the girls had not yet eaten lunch. I warned them lunch needed to be eaten soon, which was met with an "I'm not hungry" from Shanan. Mind you, this is the girl that can out eat me at dinner if it's something she likes. At 1:55 I announced that it was lunchtime, and my girls dutifully arrived at the table. It was empty, and I was asked what was for lunch. I announced, "Today we're having air for lunch." "No, really, what's for lunch, Mom?" Again, I replied, "Air." Originally, I intended it as a joke, but after I thought about it, I decided to stick to my guns as there's been more grumbling & less gratitude at meals lately. Shanan says, "Okay, I'm done," and gets up from the table. "Nope, you need to sit down & eat air for at least 15 minutes," I say. "Who wants to pray?" Alyssa volunteers. Then I add, "If, at the end of your 15 minutes of air, you decide you'd like some leftovers from lunch yesterday, I'd be happy to warm it up for you." No takers, so far. They sit and pretend to eat, and Alyssa caves first. "Mom, can you warm up some macaroni for me?" Shanan was not far behind. No grumbles, and they both asked for seconds. And, besides warming leftovers in the microwave, no effort on my part. :) Smiles all around.

Funny Girls

I never would have/could have imagined having a houseful of girls. It's fun watching them grow up, and I'm grateful for the things they've taught me about being a girl. You'd think I'd already know, since I am a girl and all, but it seems I missed embracing my girliness. ;) Today, I got asked if they could use some of my undergarments. Hmmm...I consented. And the result, well, if they weren't my own undergarments, well, I'd post pics, but I just can't bring myself to do that. It seems hair scrunchies are the stuffer of choice; they didn't even seem to notice that the end result was a bit lumpy. ;) So today has been spent decked out in a variety of bras, slips, camisoles, hose, and nighties. Of course, they needed painted nails to complete the ensemble.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Done with Summer

For today, I feel the need to say, that I am done with summer. I love the sunshine, really I do. But I'm feeling all done with the Texas summer that I find myself in the midst of. I want to go outside and feel the cool breeze on my face. I want to haul all the children outside and while away the afternoon without sweating buckets. And dare I say will be good to start school again, challenging no doubt, but good for me and for them. So there, it's out...summer is great, and I was looking forward to it, but I'm so pumped for fall!

Birthday Boy

Okay, the post is belated, but I'm happy to say that the celebration was not. :) Saturday marked the 39th anniversary of Steve's birth. I have to say that I'm rather deficient in the area of planning birthday celebrations, or most any kind of celebration, for that matter. There's good reasons for that, but I'll not go into that right now. Father's Day was a non-event in our house due to a brand new baby. I told Steve that a brand-spanking new baby was his Father's Day present, and it was; she arrived 6 days prior, so I was up and about but certainly not party planning yet. However, I didn't think I'd get away with the same reasoning for his birthday. ;) Sooooo...what to do?? The boy is not easy to buy for. If he wants it, believes it's a valid purchase, and there's money for it, he gets it; I rarely am able to buy something for him that he really and truly likes that he wouldn't splurge for himself. Trust me; I've tried and failed. I enlisted the children's help. Alyssa's response: "Hmmm...he really loves computers, but he already has one of those!" No, I did not plant this response; she came up with it on her own.
Time was drawing nigh, and I just didn't know what to do. And then...a brilliant idea came upon me. I would just plan a day together. Steve loves to spend time together as a family, but he prefers to go out & "do" things as opposed to just lazing around together, although the "doing" should involve little to no money for maximum pleasure. ;) And here's the other crazy bit, although he loves to plan vacations, he really isn't into planning family night activities, date nights, or any of those little but equally important times that fit into the category of "quality time" together. With this in mind, the girls and I concocted a plan. We would pack a picnic lunch, get out the door early, and go to Wagon Wheel Park in Coppell for some hot Texas hiking. Although someone had clued me in that there are hiking trails at this park, I could honestly find no info online about this place, other than the address. Nonetheless, we had a plan. And, we remembered that the boy likes ice cream, actually I'm not sure there's a strong enough word to describe how he feels about ice cream. :) So, we did buy something that he doesn't often splurge on but has a great fondness for...Starbucks Java Chip ice cream...his two loves rolled into one - coffee and ice cream!
The day arrived, and the girls were good about not divulging details. They told him he needed to don shorts, t-shirt, and tennis shoes, and off we went. And we did have a great time together. In fact, Alyssa had been counting down for Steve's birthday as if it were her own. She was as excited or even more so about the events for the day. There was much sweat involved, although it was honestly quite pleasant in the shade. We saw a little wildlife - a chameleon that changed color before our eyes. And we just enjoyed each other's company. And I rejoiced in the fact that I could walk and talk without feeling short of breath; I think I was short of breath almost the entire pregnancy with Genna. Seriously, it started shortly after I found out I was pregnant, and it didn't get any better as she consumed more space. Fabulous hiking trip, all in all, ended after Genna pooped, and then pooped again, and I was out of diapers...she's a super-pooper!
We made haste to return home for a good scrub in the tub to lessen the chances of chiggers and poison ivy, followed by afternoon naps, ice cream and an attempt to go Babe's in Roanoke. Too late though...the wait was too long, so off we went to Southlake, ended up at Mi Chula's as Genna had a sudden urge to be DONE with the car, and finally to the summer concert in the town square. It might not have been spectacular, but based on the smile on his face, Steve enjoyed his birthday. :) Happy Birthday, Honey!!! May there be many, many more....

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Challenges & Frustrations

Okay, I feel the need to express that while I'm trying to get this perfect before I share it with others, I just don't think that's gonna happen. :) I'm still working to figure this out, but I think I should just go ahead & share while I work out the kinks. Otherwise, I'll have this nice blog all to myself until at least Christmas, and no one will actually have seen it. ;) Alas, I think I'll have to enlist a little assistance, too, because, as I told Alyssa yesterday, I'm really not as smart as I look! (And yes, it is debatable as to whether I even look smart!) So forgive my imperfections, of which there are many, while I work out things like how to imbed my cool scrapblog page in my blog so that it is the size that I want without distorting the images, and how to upload pics to my postings in the exact place that I want them. Can you tell I'm hoping someone will read my post & offer hints?? :) I'm sure that at least some of my friends are even smarter than they look!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Something to Smile About

This is kind of long, but these are a few things that highlight our week, in no particular order:

  1. Pretend Bandaids -- Sounds strange, huh? I mean, what would you do with paper & tape. Hmmm...let's see, maybe write a note to someone & tape it to the door?? Clearly, I'm not so original in my thinking. My children, on the other hand, can spend hours (and yes, I do mean hours) with paper and tape. Yes, I've often said that we should own stock in 3M. Today, Alyssa, who is going through a phase of high bandaid usage, appeared with numerous bandaids all over her. She announced that she had pretend bandaids, Shanan's idea and design apparently, but from more than a foot away, you wouldn't know they were pretend. They looked real -- a small square of paper secured with a piece of tape, one was complete with "blood" in the center. Voila' -- bandaids galore! Their ingenuity certainly made me smile
  2. Oreos -- I never ate Oreos when I was a kid, I mean never ate them. But somehow, my kids have been exposed to Oreos, and Alyssa, in particular, has extreme fondness for them. Oreos are one of those things that I put into the category of doughnuts, things that you might enjoy, even like a lot, but you should never get used to as a part of your daily diet because there's really no redeeming nutritional value in them. With that said, I will occasionally honor a request for them, such as a couple weeks ago when Alyssa came along with me to the grocery store after Genna was born & was really quite charming. Shortly after aquiring the Oreos, we had a social get-together at our friends, the Hargus' house for the 4th of July. I asked Alyssa if she'd like to bring her Oreos over & share them. She was a bit hesitant, to be honest, but she did agree. I praised her for her willingness to share her prized possession, and off we went with the Oreos. Upon leaving our friends' house, Alyssa sweetly inquired about the Oreos, because they were very near & dear to her. When Leslie broke the news to Alyssa that she thought the Oreos had arrived with another friend (Alyssa's best friend Zaynah), and had therefore sent the remaining Oreos home with them instead, Alyssa was in disbelief. Steve assured her that it would be okay; after all, Zaynah is her best friend, and it's nice to share with friends. And then, Alyssa's face fell, she covered her face with her hands, and sobbed. An award-wining performance for the audience that remained...she was heartbroken. And one week later...Leslie delivered a brand new package of Oreos to our doorstep today. Now that's something for Alyssa to smile about!

  3. Cuddles -- Last night, as my girls were giving me hugs & kisses before bed, Alyssa sweetly requested "cuddle time" with me today. Something so sweet about that, no demands, no yanking on me or incessantly asking for my attention while I'm obviously busy, just a simple request. Of course, her request spurred Shanan to do the same. The sweetness of the request made the honoring of it all the more pleasant!
  4. Friends -- The kind that no matter how much time has passed since you last had a chance to catch up, you just pick up where you left off. Amy, you will be missed, but when I think of you, I have something to smile about, because you are one of those friends! :) Your move is our loss, but there's a whole lot of people waiting in Indiana who'll be so glad we let you and your family go.
  5. Clean houses, or at least a clean upstairs -- I have to brag on my hubby today, because while I have done nothing except make breakfast and take care of Genna, he has decided to tackle the upstairs for the first time since Genna's birth. He may not clean often, but he's thorough when he does get around to it! Goodbye dustbunnies, for the day, at least. ;) Thank you, honey! Now, if we can just manage to mop the downstairs this weekend...

Thursday, July 3, 2008

On Change

Speaking of new beginnings, you can't have a new beginning without change. And I've been examining my own approach to change. In short...I'm resistant to it, even if it's something good, even if it's something I've hoped for, prayed for, strongly desired. And if it's something that I've wanted & pursued, I'm always shocked after the fact when I realize I'm having trouble adjusting to it. Take for example, the latest big change...from a family of four to a family of five, from two kids to three. Okay, I've devoted much mental energy to determining if and when would be the right time since Alyssa was born over five years ago. And now that the time is here, why does it surprise me that the change is difficult??

Well, for starters, I just realized that change is difficult for the simple reason that it requires adjustment. And my job description just changed. I wanted it to change, am happy that it changed, but change is change. My list of responsibilities didn't just get shorter; no, it just got longer. All good, but again, figuring out how to fit all of the old responsibilities in -- mom to Alyssa, mom to Shanan, wife to Steve, friend, sister, daughter, child of God, not to mention teacher, chef, chauffeur, housekeeper, get the idea--while adding mom to Genna, a newborn who is dependent on me for meeting all her needs, well, shouldn't I be forgiving of myself for the adjustment? I wouldn't have it any other way, and in no way am I discontent with where I am, but there are moments where it feels hard. As long as I forgive myself for feeling that sometimes, I can be content in the moment. Those hard times are balanced by moments of complete satisfaction with where I am, what I'm doing, who I'm becoming and who my children are, who they're becoming, and where our family is going. I'm not always sure what the path will look like today, but I know where we're heading.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

New Beginnings

New month, new baby, new blog. I've found myself increasingly intrigued by this concept of blogging. And so, I've decided to take the plunge, and try it out. Somehow, it feels high pressure. I mean, I have to figure out how to do it, and these days, my computer skills aren't exactly at the top of my resume. It requires different skills than cooking, cleaning, feeding, diaper changing, soothing fussy babies, and discipling children. Not only that, but I fight the urge to only do the things that I can be phenomenally good at. (And I was wondering where Shanan got that from??) Will my blog measure up to the others I've seen with cool design & layout, music, current pics, fun stuff, and deep thoughts?? Ahhhh...what difference does it make? This is a great opportunity to chronicle the daily happenings in our household, for us and for those we know & love but don't necessarily get to share daily life with. That's good enough reason to give it a whirl, right?'s to new beginnings!