Monday, December 21, 2009

My First Snow Storm

Behind the wheel.

Saturday Madelyn and I had tickets to go see The Nutcracker. Another mom from her class arranged for us to go. There were sixteen of us all together, 8 moms and 8 seven year olds. Our friends were driving to our house and then we were going to ride together to lunch and go to the show afterward.

Sounds fun right? Add to that a bunch of snow. We were okay driving to lunch. There was snow on the ground, but it had only just picked up in intensity. Well, an hour and a half at a lovely lunch and boy oh boy did the snow pick up. The roads were covered. It was crazy. I got stuck just trying to get into the parking garage. Thankfully the guy cleared a bit of snow away from my tire and I was able to gain traction.

It was no better by the time we left the show. Oh, The Nutcracker was great by the way. I was a little distracted during the first half due to the impending drive home I had, but at intermission I called Dan and he gave me pointers on how to drive through snow. I did what he told me and we had a pretty easy drive home considering the conditions. It helped that there were barely any other cars on the road. We didn't get stuck. We didn't slide off the road, and we made it home in one piece.

Then poor Serena had to drive a half hour home still. She lives up on a mountain so she had to take the long way. She made it home in one piece too though. I felt like it was such an accomplishment though. Usually Dan is the one driving when we go through snow storms, but he wasn't available at the time. I will admit though, I wanted to call him and ask him to come rescue us, but he told me we would be fine.

Adenoids

Praise God everything went smoothly with Elijah getting his adenoids out. He did not cry once, not even coming out of anesthesia like kids normally do. Amazing! And, he got a special transformer toy, or I should say toys. It was a set of 5 mini transformers. He was THRILLED. His face lit up like Christmas and he didn't sleep at all for the rest of the day.

He was super cute getting ready to go in for the surgery too. He changed into his gown and then asked if he could lie down on the bed. He closed his eyes and pretended to be sleeping when the nurse walked in. He was being so silly and cute. Then he giggled his way back to the OR with the doctor who was really goofy.

We kept waiting for him to show sign that he was in pain, or needed to sleep, but it never happened. We had to keep telling him to stay calm.

On Saturday it was the same thing until the afternoon. Madelyn and I were leaving to go see The Nutcracker and a low fever kicked in and a little pain. Nothing a little tylenol, transformers, and a Scooby Doo video couldn't take care of.

So, that was that. I guess my advice to other parents about to go through this with their child would be to buy them a set of 5 mini transformers and you should be good to go.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Hello Blog ...

It's been a while. So sad that I never post on here anymore. The days just slip past and all these funny, cute, amazing, brilliant, poetic, majestic, marvelous, intelligent ... (should I go on?) things that my children say don't get posted here.

Why?

I'll tell you why. I am a P. A Perceiver. Ever do the MeyersBriggs Personality Test? I completely fit the P profile. I am a little bit of a J, but mostly a P. I get bored easily. Start projects that never get finished, etc. Hence, the state of my blog.

But, while I am here I'll update a few things ...

Right now my girl is suffering from asthma. She hacks and hacks and hacks and hacks ......... Every time she goes through an attack like this I come so close to having one foot in the asylum. I do believe I may live there one day. But, that's another story. It's just not easy lying in bed in the middle of the night listening to your child hack in her sleep ALL NIGHT LONG.

She is getting better though. Praise God.

My boy is suffering from sinus congestion (as usual). He is supposed to get his adenoids out on Friday. Friday. So, why couldn't he stay healthy through Friday? Argh. So, one last round of antibiotics before the big day. Boo. I don't like the fact he has to have surgery, but the fact he has been on an antibiotic 9 times this year is no good either. The poor boy. I don't even think he realizes how miserable he feels half the time since he's always congested.

Both kids are loving school (when they can get there). They just had their Christmas concert. Elijah sang his little heart out with a few yawns here and there. I love 4 year olds.

CHRISTMAS IS COMING!!!! EEEEEK!! I am so excited. I can't wait to give the kids their toys, etc. I love the whole thing. I am doing my best to not buy them anything else, knowing they will get things from others as well. This is why it's best if I don't get my shopping done early.

Oh, remember how I said I wanted to write about our experience with Dan and what he went through with his health? I changed my mind. I may write about things here and there I just don't want to revisit those places just yet. Things are too nice right now. Although I will say this ...

There are days when I will just be driving down the road and enjoy the peacefulness of our lives right now. Sure we still have issues, but it's not constant. We are not running to appointments constantly, or making emergency trips to appointments on a regular basis, stressing about what will happen next, will the meds work this time, are we doing the right thing? All that is gone right now, and boy do we know it and appreciate that fact.

So, I catch myself thanking God on a regular basis for the simplicity of our lives right now, and I don't think I would do that so much had we not gone through what we went through. Whew! It was a long road, and you do emerge from it feeling somewhat wounded. But, if the woundedness draws me closer to my Savior then so be it. Closer to Him is where I long to be.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Elijah, the Town Crier

Or, the K4 Crier.

I seriously believe that he sees it as his duty to be the crier of the class. His teacher Mrs. Shrom, or Jane as I sometimes call her, told me today that he was crying so hard yesterday and wouldn't calm down. Finally she told him that he was going to have to sit in time out if he didn't stop and he immediately turned off the water works. She could not believe it. She was at the point where she was ready to go get Dan because he just was not calming down.

He is so theatrical. Yesterday when I asked him if he cried in class he said yes as in, "of course I did." One day he told me it's because that's what he does in his K4 class. But, I told him he didn't HAVE to cry. He is still trying to understand that.

Meanwhile, he LOVES K4 and is so bummed when Friday comes and he doesn't get to go to school that day. He cannot wait to go to school in the morning and is so happy to be there. Silly boy.

Madelyn of course is doing great and is just in her element when she is in school. And, she is riding the bus home which is just so fun. Seeing her little face in the window in the front seat as the bus pulls up to our house just melts my heart, and she waves to me. I just love it. It's my favorite time of day.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

First Sting

Elijah got stung by a bee for the first time ever tonight. Poor thing. He just started crying and then screaming. He got stung on his finger and right by his ear. First he was screaming about his finger and then he was holding his head saying how badly it hurt.

Thankfully, it didn't swell up too badly, and one of the dad's at the picnic we were at had an insect sting wipe in the car. But, Elijah was so bummed. He had been running and playing happily with all the other TKA students who were there, but that bee took whatever fun he had been having away from him tonight.

He did calm down after a bit. It helped that Dan took over. We told him he joined the ranks now that he had been stung. For some reason it seems that the bees are especially bad this year. They seem to be EVERYWHERE! I couldn't even sit outside today with my coffee without being swarmed by bees! It was crazy.

Anyway, Elijah did say that he thought maybe he got stung because he wasn't supposed to be climbing on top of the tunnel slide. I told him he might be right. It makes me so nervous when kids climb on top of the jungle gym play things instead of on them or through them. Thankfully it was a really small jungle gym so if he had fallen it wasn't very high up.

The Back to School Picnic for TKA is always fun though, and the kids love seeing all of there friends from last year. They run around like crazy and we get whatever new info there is about the school.

Madelyn didn't even know that Elijah got stung. She was having so much fun she didn't hear the screams. When we got home I saw that she had dirt all up and down her shins. A true sign of a fun evening.

I do have to say though that this has been one of the best summers for us. I seriously hate to see it go. We have had so much fun with friends and family. I'm really bummed that all the kids have to go back to school and can't just keep coming over and doing water slides and slip 'n slides in the back yard, not to mention picnics on their towels. Harumph. I guess I just need to look out for fun things to do during the Fall and Winter.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Transformer Elijah

Elijah is obsessed with Transformers. He said yesterday, "What if transformers were really in the city and they saw me and I said, 'Hi. I'm Elijah?'" I said, "I know! Then what do you think you would do, go have lunch with them?" He said, "Yeah, but they only like to drink motor oil." It is so fun to run with your children's imagination. I love to day dream with them.

Well, today we went to the school so Elijah could see his classroom, know where the bathroom is, etc. We bumped into a few other girls whose parents work at the school and immediately Elijah was on the floor balled up in his transformer position. The girls just giggled.

If he's not doing a spiderman, wolverine, captain america, or iron man move, he is a transformer. He loves being a hero, and sometimes a villain.

Chatting with Friends

I love girls, especially almost 7 year olds. Madelyn had a Birthday party to go to on Saturday for a friend from school. We took Madelyn's friend Isabelle with us. We love Isabelle. She is so cute, and she is close to Madelyn's age. They are the two youngest in their class. Isabelle turns 7 in November.

Anyway, I had them in the car and they were talking as if I was no where around. The conversations went something like this ...

I: I have only told 1 lie.
M: I have told 2.
I: Yeah, I have told 2 also.

I was really curious what those lies were, but I didn't ask. I didn't want them to know I could hear them.

They got a lot of candy from the party so on the way home they were eating some. They pulled out the cinnamon hard candies and each ate one.

I: This is REALLY cinnamony.
M: I know!
I: I am going to spit mine out.
M: I don't want to waste mine because it's candy, and candy is just SO good.
I: Well, I am going to put mine back in the wrapper so that I can eat it later because sometimes you just want that sweet taste!

They just sounded so grown up, but still so cute!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Babies

I have spent quite a bit of time with babies lately which has been super fun. Baby Daisy is just deliciously fun, and the fact that she resembles Madelyn so much really brings back some fun memories. How many times can I use the word fun in this post?

The crazy thing is that Daisy looks like her dad a lot, but then really resembles Madelyn. Figure that one out. Really it's the dark hair and blue eyes that remind me of Madelyn. Babies change so much as they grow so I can't wait to see how she develops and her looks change.

Jess' babies are super fun to have around because she has 2 so chances are one needs to be held. Having twins and one being a boy and one a girl just brings along so many delightful things to observe and ponder. They were so squeezable. Both slept on me at different times and that is the best when you can just hold them and snuggle them.

So, do I want another baby? Not really. I joke that my chihuahua is my baby. I especially tease Susan about raising our babies together and compare Daisy to Molly. Poor Susan. I never had a younger sibling to grow up with so she has sort of filled that role now. I probably drive her crazy so it's may be a good thing that we don't see each other all the time. Although, I think we could manage.

I think Dan would love another baby, but I'm just not feeling it. I will always be curious what a 3rd one would look like, etc., but I am enjoying the stage we are in now. It's a lot of work having a baby, and we just came through 3 REALLY stressful years of our lives with Dan's health issues. I am enjoying the peace right now. God may have other plans for us regarding children and that would be fine, but when it's left up to me I am opting out for now. Plus, I am loving squeezing other peoples' babies, and still getting sleep at night.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Is September really almost here?

My boy is starting K-4 this year. Hard to believe. I keep telling him things that he can and can't do in school trying to prepare him for the classroom setting. For instance, he kissed a kid on the shoulder at swimming lessons the other night. I called him over and explained to him that he just can't kiss his classmates and that the same rule applies to K-4. He said okay and as he was walking back to the pool he turned around, put his arms in the air, smiled big and said, "But they can kiss me!!" Oh boy.

He just loves to hug and kiss people. He loves to sit on people and talk to them, sometimes taking their face in his hands while he is talking to them or asking them a question. It's very sweet, but the older he gets I am trying to teach him about personal space. He is catching on, but last weekend at Dan's parents' church he was greeting the pastor after church. He went to hug the pastor and said, "I can't stop hugging!" I love his personality and his love of life and people. Plus, I can always count on him for a laugh.

So, school should be interesting for my little boy. I am excited for him and for all that he will learn. I know his teacher is wonderful and she absolutely loves her job so I know he will be well-cared for and loved. It is also comforting to know that Dan will be right upstairs. That is a huge blessing. I am really spoiled with our schooling situation, to be less than ten minutes away and have Dan there is just a wonderful thing.

On a related note ...

Madelyn is going to be a 2nd Grader! AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How did this happen?? I filled out the re-enrollment forms I had a mini-heart attack. I handed them in to the school and one night Dan came home and said, "So, I saw Madelyn's form and when I saw the 2 for her grade I had to do a double take." So, we both shared a "holy crap our life is passing us by like the speed of light" moment. Granted, we started the girl in school early so it's our fault, but still! She's in second grade!! I'm sure I will freak out every year over this type of thing probably for the rest of her life, but don't we all?

I have been trying to convince her to drop out of school and just do what I like to call Snuggle School at home. Basically we sit on the couch and snuggle all day pretending life isn't passing us by and maybe watch a video here and there. She's not going for it, not even with the lure of a video.

She is a brave girl though. She is going to ride the bus home from school this year. This is huge for Madelyn. I have driven her the past two years, but with Elijah being half day, that's 3 separate trips there and back that I will have to make to the school. And, this year I will have one of Elijah's classmates with me in the afternoons twice a week. So, it will just be nice to not have to make that extra trip. She is fine with it though. She knows some of the kids who will be on the bus, and it is a less than 15 minute ride. I, or Dan, will still drive them to school because the bus doesn't take K-4 students so it's all good.

All in all, it's a big year for us on the school front. EEK!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Feels Like Home

My laptop went bonkers on me and had to pay a visit to Dell to be fixed. I stopped keeping track, but it's been almost a month since I've been able to use it ... give me a minute (sniffle) ... okay, I'm better. It's just ... it's been hard.

Honestly, we've been busy and traveling so it hasn't been that big of a deal, but I did miss it at times. It was weird to be stuck in one spot sitting at a desk and trying to do my normal things on the computer. I find snuggling into my big green comfy chair and reading up on my usual computer things is much nicer than being stuck at a desk. So, here I am, snuggled up again. Ahhh, feels good.

It's funny because I didn't even want to read my normal blogs and things because it just didn't feel right on the other computer. That computer just isn't mine anymore and it does crazy things because it's almost out of memory and it's getting old.

But, my computer is back now! We are so happy to be reunited. I am hoping to blog more now too. There have been a lot of things I've wanted to blog about, but haven't. I need to get caught up.

In the meantime I will be snuggling with my computer on my breaks from cleaning out our basement storage room, the pantry, and our office. Happy Day!! I love purging :)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Ahhh, hello beach ... we definitely need to get together more often

We are here. Our house is great. We are just a few houses away from the beach and the tail end of the boardwalk which in my opinion is the best location. You don't get the noise, but you are within walking distance of the fun of the boardwalk.

We have a house sitter. So far my newest dog Molly is not taking to her. She is earning her money this week. Poor girl.

Elijah and I were up at 4 on Saturday morning, not the best start to our week. I realized he had only eaten a banana on Friday night for dinner. With all the kids and family it's easy to overlook these things I guess. I know I don't win a mother of the year award with that one. Let's move on.

We were thrilled when the realtor had food available for us so we had lunch there before getting to our house to unpack. So yummy too!

We hit the beach after unpacking. I actually fell asleep on the beach. I NEVER do that, but I had been up since 4. I even missed the excitement of our umbrella blowing away down the beach into the ocean. Oh, and did I mention it was wall to wall people? The crowds were nuts on the beach and boardwalk. We saw the fireworks on the beach. That's the best. So relaxing.

Sunday came and my stomach was sick so I spent the morning in the bathroom. Ugh. There should be some kind of law against getting sick while at the ocean. The good news is that I got to take a 3 hour nap. We also got to see Dottie's (my stepsister) mansion at the beach. Okay, it's not a mansion, but it is HUGE.

Last night we went out for ice cream. Elijah can't eat ice cream, but we thought he should be able to do sherbet right? Wrong. He threw up this morning. Hence still being at the house and not at the beach at 10 a.m. Poor little guy. I knew something was up when he was still sleeping at 8:30. Then he just could not wake up. He still feels a little funky. It's so sad because he's my morning person, full of energy right away and to see him all sad and icky feeling is awful. This is partly how I knew he had issues with milk as a baby. Any time I gave him dairy he would end up throwing up. His body just rejects any kind of milk product. It's definitely an allergy though and not just an intolerance. It's crazy, and makes feeding him super hard.

So, here we are. I think I need to live at a beach one day. Dan and I both feel this way. Knowing the big vast ocean is just minutes away brings peace to my soul. There's just nothing like it.

Hayes is super cute with his little 21 mos ways about him. He doesn't talk. He makes noises, but he gets so excited and words pop out like Elijah and ribs. He was running through the house looking for Elijah and was saying his name. He wanted more ribs last night and yelled, "Rib!" But, when you ask him later on to say words he just mumbles, grunts, etc. He is such a little show off. He is so adorable. Addie and Madelyn are "like sisters" they keep saying. They are cute. They have a couple matching pairs of pjs and outfits and they love it. Elijah goes between the girls and Hayes. He got confused at first and asked for his matching night gown as well. He also wanted pony tails. I think he gets it now though that he's not a girl.

Cousins are the best.

I think that's all for now. Stay tuned for more stomach issue stories ...

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Blog? What? I have a blog?

It has been SO LONG since I have posted. How sad. We have had a whole lot going on.

So, this will be a quick get caught up post ...

We have another dog and oh me oh my am I in love with her. She is 8 lbs, smaller than my cats, and is so funny and cute. I can't believe how quickly I fell in love with her. Madelyn too. Molly (the chihuahua) LOVES the kids. She is so sweet. I found her on craigslist.com. Her family was moving and couldn't take her with them. Daisy and the cats have been fine with her. She's so little it's like they don't really care.

Elijah continues to crack us up. He has decided to call Molly "Ayeechop." I'm not too sure on the spelling, but it's pretty funny and has stuck with him.

We were in the car yesterday and Elijah said, "When I drink water from a water bottle and stick my tongue in that's my tongue exercise."

Madelyn really has a fun sense of humor now. She totally gets jokes, or funny things which is fun to see.

We are going to the beach with Shannon and her family and my mom. It should be crazy, but fun. Man do I love the beach. The doctor said this morning that the salty air should really help clear out Elijah's nose congestion. He gets sinus infections pretty regularly. Hearing her say that though I think is enough confirmation that we need to move to the beach. I'll keep you posted on that.

Friends are the best. I have 2 friends who just had babies. I love to see good families multiplying their numbers. Dan seems to be getting a bit of baby fever lately. I, on the other hand, am not.

Nick's nephew just died from a burst brain aneurysm. I can't even begin to describe how sad it is. He was such a great kid. The funeral home said about 1,000 people showed up for the viewing. As a mother it tears my heart apart to think about losing one of my children. They buried him on the day they were to have his graduation party.

Dan is doing well and is continuing to wean off his meds. While this makes me a little nervous I am glad for him. He looks healthier and not as bloated, especially in his face. Many people have commented lately. I think that makes him feel better as well.

Right now I should be cleaning out my car, packing, making beds and washing sheets, but instead I am online. Go figure.

Why is it that lately I have thought of all these things to post about and when I finally do I can't remember half the things?

Oh well. I guess this will do for now.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Elijahisms

So, Elijah pulled ligaments in his shoulder. We made a water slide in our back yard and he fell off the ladder climbing up to the slide. I think his shoulder hit the base of the slide and that's how he hurt it as badly as he ddid. We spent Friday night at the ER, 5 hours total. Good times. Actually, the kids were super cute sitting next to each other on the bed watching Scooby Doo on the DVD player. Thankfully this wasn't a rush out the door to the ER kind of thing so I was able to go prepared for the long haul.

Well, after we settled into the waiting room at the ER I said to Elijah, "I'm so sorry Elijah. I didn't realize you hurt your arm so badly. I thought you were just being a crab apple." He said, "No. I was a sad apple."

He didn't really complain about his arm after he hurt it. He cried like normal when he falls, and it was dinner time so I thought he was just tired and hungry. It wasn't until he was going to bed that I realized it was really hurt. He complained about it after climbing into his bed. He was crying because he put pressure on it and it hurt. Poor thing.

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He has also been telling me that he doesn't want to grow up lately. He wants to stay little so I can hold him forever.

This morning he told me that growing up was not "working out for him." But, after talking about it for a bit he said, "If I grow up and my legs get long I can reach the pedals and drive a car right?" He was better after that realization.

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He has been super polite lately. He and Madelyn will be playing and he'll say, "Will you excuse me for a minute please Madelyn?" He needs a bathroom break. It's so sweet when I hear him say it!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Who Am I?

I never enjoyed cooking. It was a chore. I didn't like it. Once I was home with my babies I had to figure out how to cook since I really had no excuse at that point. So, I did what I had to do. I was just proud of myself for evolving from the processed chicken and biscuit dinner you can buy that are pretty much already made for you.

I just get so sick of making and eating the same foods. Well, recently it seems that aliens have come to earth and replaced my hate-to-cook-self with a wow-I-can't-wait-to-try-that-recipe-self. It's weird. I just saw a recipe for homemade noodles and thought, "Oh, I can't wait to try that!"

Wait, what? I turned around to look for who else may have thought that that I just heard their thoughts.

No one is here. It's just me.

I even bake now too which baking used to be such a boring waste of time for me. Ugh.

Mostly, I was just thrilled to have people cook and bake for me. Now it's all different. I used to just pick up whatever food to eat while I was out. Now I think things like, "Oh no. I can make something else that will be even better at home." Wait, what? (You know the drill.)

So, why am I like this now? I have explored this and this is what I have found.

I discovered www.PioneerWoman.com. How can you not want to try her recipes. She takes the best pictures of the food and it is SO step by step it is hard to mess it up.

Also, I inherited some kitchen pans and supplies from Dan's grandmother. They are selling her house and we were able to pick some things we might need. Having more than one potand mixing bowl makes a difference when you want to try different recipes, and yes I did only have one pot and one mixing bowl. No wait. I did have 2 bowls, but one I kept in the laundry room for dirty rags from wiping up my babies.

I have been trying to make healthier things for my family too using more natural ingredients and trying to avoid high fructose corn syrup. Can you believe it's even in a can of kidney beans!? Crazy.

And lastly, my kids are older. I can focus a little more on cooking. This makes a huge difference. Before it would be squeezing in dinner during whatever happy occupied moments the kids had.

So, come over and enjoy some home cookin' while it lasts! I don't know when the aliens might come back and replace the new me with the old me.

I should also mention that Dan has been loving life.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Bad Guys

I offered Elijah his spiderman laptop to play with tonight to help him settle before going to sleep. He had a 2.5 hour nap which is highly unusual. He is sick right now though so he definitely needed it. Anyway, I offered it to him and he said, "No thanks. I've had enough of fighting and trapping bad guys for now."

Even super heroes need breaks at times.

Our Weekend Getaway (Summed Up)

Fabulous. No kids. Cute little house. Perfect. Fog. Cool. Movies (@ 4 p.m.!! and on - who does that?). Good wine. Yummy coffee (made by hubby). No cooking. Yummy food (whenever we felt like eating, not based on bedtime schedule). Time to have conversation, giggle, laugh heartily. Driving around like teenagers. Walking. People watching. Staying up late and sleeping in. Flirting. Doing nothing. Ahhhh ... life with no schedule. It was wonderful.

Back to reality now.

I realized this weekend that I am good for about 24 hours and then I am ready to hug my kids again. I loved being away, but I know they would have had fun too so I can't wait to go back to the beach with them. Hopefully the weather will be nice when we go back though so we can do more outside. The kids would have gone nuts this weekend if they were with us because we couldn't really play on the beach and only minimally in the yard.

This was so crazy. We were dripping with water after being on the beach due to the thick fog. I have never been in a fog like that before where you are literally wet after being in it. It was crazy.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Things I want to Remember

Yesterday was cloudy, 61 degrees, and rainy. When Madelyn got home from school and the kids were playing outside Elijah insisted he needed his jacket and gloves. He was thrilled too when he found his winter hat. He put it all on and then ran outside in his barefeet.

The best part was when he brought all his clothes to me to help him put it on and then said, "Oh, will you excuse me for a minute please?" He ran back to the office and got his milk. He came back and said, "I just needed to get my milk." It was polite and grown up sounding. There is hope for my boy yet.

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Madelyn is so tender-hearted, always has been. Elijah has been sick this week (as has Madelyn), but as Madelyn was getting better Elijah was getting worse. She has been feeling his head, stroking his hair, trying to tell me what she thinks he needs, asking if she can take his temperature. She will be a good mommy one day. I could just hug her all day long.

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We are going away this weekend to the beach. My mom will be here with the kids. I know that they will be in good hands, but it's always a bit hard to leave my kids behind. I actually was planning on taking them with us, but Dan thought it would be a good anniversary getaway for us. I agree, but it is still hard to leave them. So, this morning the kids and I were hugging and taking turns with knock knock jokes. Mine always ended up being something about hugging the kids. Madelyn said she was going to hug me forever and ever. I always tell her when I hug her that I could just stay like that forever. She giggles and tells me all the things she needs to do that she can't quite do with her mother attached to her. Then I remembered I had to get her to school! Oops.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Elijah's Baby


Today Elijah has been taking care of one of Madelyn's baby dolls that looks like a real baby. It was actually the gift my mom gave Madelyn when Elijah was born. It was her "big sister gift." So, we've always just referred to him as Elijah's twin because it would creep us out to see it lying on the floor when we had real baby Elijah sleeping in his bassinette.

So, for whatever reason, this morning Elijah has been carrying him around, feeding him, hugging him, etc. He was being so quiet and gentle with him and we were heading downstairs to get breakfast when UH-OH the baby tumbled down the stairs. It rolled the whole way down the stairs. It was so funny. The kids and I cracked up and then Elijah picks the baby up and says, "He's okay!"

Then the baby had breakfast with Elijah. He was feeding him cereal and giving him milk. It turns out he named him Judah. Judah is the name of a little boy who sometimes comes with his mom to Bible Study.

Elijah then brings Judah over to me and says, "He won't stop picking his nose!" He had Judah's finger up the doll's nose. I said, "Well, I don't know what to tell you because I keep telling my son to stop picking his nose and it hasn't worked yet!" Elijah didn't get the message in that.

So, to be funny I took the doll's finger and put it up Elijah's nose. Well, he thought that was the best and then stuck the doll's finger in his ear. Thankfully, after a few times of telling him to stop Judah would stop.

It was so cute seeing Elijah with this baby doll. Besides the one time I saw him hitting the baby's face with a spoon over and over, oh and dropping him down the stairs, he was really sweet with him.

It's funny too that he took an interest in the baby the day before his birthday since it was a gift to Madelyn for his birth day.

Which brings me again to the fact that my baby is turning 4 again. I seriously keep hyperventilating. I kept kissing him tonight while he lay sleeping because it's the last time I'll be able to kiss him as a 3 year old. I think I need some therapy.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Tidbits

Yesterday I was running late for church so I did my makeup in the car. I requested the windows up so my hair wasn't flying all around while I tried to put on makeup. Elijah then said, "Oh Mommy, you are going to be SO beautiful with your makeup on." He is such a charmer. Oh how I pray for that child.

So, we get to church and Elijah asks me if I have my makeup on and he wants to see me. Sure enough he then says, "Mommy, you look so beautiful." Ah, it cracked me up. He says a lot of things are beautiful, like my mom's camera for instance.

......................

So, my girl is sick. I hate when my babes are sick, but she just has a low fever and her belly is upset. I will take these kinds of sicknesses over the hacking coughing any day. I hope she feels better soon, but I also love having her home. She's so snuggly and sweet, and I think she's thrilled to be plopped in front of the tv watching pbs kids.

.....................

My boy turns 4 this week on Wednesday and I'm already hyperventilating.

.....................

Happiness Factor:

Warm weather makes me feel like a new person. I love it.

I have a fabulous family who loves me and supports me.

I am extremely blessed with many great friends. I love each and every one of them and don't know what I would do without them.

God's word never ceases to amaze me.

John the Baptist said that all that we have came from heaven, or we would have nothing if it didn't come from heaven (I'm paraphrasing). I think of this often and it has made me look heavenward with a heart of thanksgiving that much more. What a great guy John was, always focused on Christ with a humble heart.

.............................

A friend at church yesterday told me I look like a chocolate bar. I was wearing a brown swirly top with black bottoms. It made me laugh so hard. I don't think I have ever been told that before.

............................

I found a stool on Elijah's bed this morning and when I asked him why it was there he said because he was trying to turn the light (his ceiling fan light) on. The ceiling fan was on and the stool was very near the edge of his bed. Boys.

............................

My Mom-mom just turned 86 on Saturday. I hope I look as good as her and am as healthy as she is if I live that long. Love that lady.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Stronger after Battle

Dan and I have been through a lot in the last 4 years ... a lot. We seem to be nearing the light at the end of the tunnel at this point though. And, while I am always a bit hesitant to say that because we never know what tomorrow may bring, I am happy to say I feel stronger.

I feel as though we have been through battle. Boy oh boy does it feel like we are emerging from battle. So, while feeling somewhat wounded, I definitely feel stronger.

Here's an example. I am a crier. It does not take much for me to cry. I watch people say good-bye at the airport and I cry. If I see someone crying, I cry. I think about Madelyn going away to college and I cry. It just doesn't take much for me to cry. It never has.

But lately I've noticed I don't cry as easily. I am stronger.

Recently, Dan and I were watching, of all things, American Idol. This is funny because we don't even watch American Idol. We barely watch tv. We had exercised together though and while cooling down he turned the channel to AI. I know enough about AI because I have friends who watch it so I knew about Danny and how his wife died.

So, I said to Dan, "Isn't that sad? He is on AI now and he can't even share that with his wife? What would we do if we didn't have each other to come home to and share things about our lives with?"

Then I looked over at him and he had tears in his eyes! My dear sweet husband. I love him so much. He had tears! I said, "Are you crying??"

I loved it. We were laughing because he said, "Yes!" and something about being super sensitive now. I said, "And I think I am stronger!" He said, "It's a good thing because your husband is a big baby (or something to that effect)."

It was so sweet and funny and we laughed and hugged and all that good stuff.

All that to say, God has taught me a whole bunch, and though we were deep in the trenches at times I have somehow emerged stronger.

On the way home from church today Dan and I were discussing what we have been through and how we should write down our accounts of all that has taken place. Life just keeps going and I want to always remember what God has done in our lives during this time and all that He brought us through. Plus, I think it will be interesting to read Dan's perspective on things compared to mine.

So, this will probably be my forum for writing these accounts. It will just be easy for me this way I think. It's already emotional for me to think back even to those earlier days when it was all just beginning. (I said I was stronger. I didn't say I was no longer a crier.) But, I think it will be good, therapeutic even.

So, stayed tuned. Hopefully, it will be somewhat interesting for my 3 readers to read. I certainly hope it won't chase away my few readers. That would be tragic.

Madelyn Loves Jesus

I think I mentioned in my last post that I believe Madelyn loves Jesus, and I truly believe she does.

We are reading through the Chronicles of Narnia with her ... again, and we are finishing up The Lion Witch and the Wardrobe. Well, we were reading about Aslan being killed, and I stopped to ask her if she knew about Aslan being a symbol of Jesus, and she said yes. So, I assumed that she and Dan had covered that at some point.

I was wrong.

She goes on to say that she read her children's version of the book (thanks again Kim!) and while she was reading that she thought, "Hey, that's like Jesus!" She then went on and basically shared the gospel story with me about Jesus dying on the cross and taking our place.

I was almost speechless. We then went on to talk about the reason for offerings in the OT and she mentioned Cain and Abel and why did Cain kill Abel, etc. It was so great! Her little mind is amazing to me. She retains so much information. I love it.

And, she's so great about telling stories and reading to Elijah. So, the one day she was telling him all about the Easter story. She is everything to him these days so he loves it. She can do no wrong in his eyes.

Having children is an amazing thing. It is so fun getting to know them and to share God's wonders with them.

Praise God from Whom ALL blessings flow ...

Friday, April 17, 2009

My Little Reader


Madelyn has ALWAYS LOVED reading. We read to her even as a tiny baby. She is not a sleeper so to help her settle at night we would leave books in her crib for her to look at instead of screaming at us (not kidding, she would scream, and the books didn't always help). We started with cloth books because they were safe. Then on to board books until finally she could flip through regular books without ripping the pages out of boredom.

This has been the routine since I can remember. There were nights she would still be up flipping through books when we were ready to go to bed. We'd have to cut her off.

Even now I have to tell her to lie down while she reads her books or else she is up half the night.

My girl loves to read. That's all there is to it. It's in her blood. The blood from her father that is. I don't mind reading, but I don't read to fill an addiction as those two seem to do.

So, no surprise really when Madelyn one night told us she was going to read to us instead of us reading to her. Um, okay. And, she did. That's my girl. When she sets her mind on wanting to do something she is going to do it.

That was the summer of 2007. She was 4 and was reading fluently with expression, the whole deal by the end of that summer.

Okay, so all this to say that the other night on our way to the Good Friday service at church Madelyn was a little chatter box. She told me how she got her dormer all set up with pillows and books and coloring books. I told her that was great because then she could really use that space for things she loves. Mostly we end up throwing pillows and stuffed animals up there.

Anyway, she then says, "Yeah, I don't know why, but I am really into reading lately." .... Um ... I had to just giggle silently to myself. The girl has been "into reading" since she was old enough to hold a book! I love it.

Although I have to say that lately she is flying through books like crazy. Of course, she's not getting as much sleep, but she just finished The Wizard of Oz, a chapter book with 11 chapters in 2 nights! Craziness.

Back to the Good Friday service, she wasn't really into the service so she asked me where the Easter story was in the Bible. I showed her to Mark and she sat and read the Bible through the service. She loves Jesus. She is always drawing crosses and writing little things about thanking Jesus for dying on the cross. So sweet.

That's my girl.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Elijahisms

Tonight we had Jess and the kids here for dinner. Elijah said boys are allergic to dairy. We told him not all boys were allergic to dairy so he said that only boys named Elijah were allergic to dairy. Too funny.

At one point Elijah said he was allergic to cow's milk to which Jess said, "Preston is too." Then Elijah said, "I'm 3!"

Love that kid. Of course, then he said his stomach was hurting, and laid his head down on the table. Dan picked him up and Elijah fell asleep and has been sleeping since :( I hope he's okay.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

So sentimental these days ...

or just plain weepy. Call it what you will, but man oh man. I just want to cry over every little thing.

Okay, first of all I am so in love with my Lord right now. His word never ceases to amaze me. I am so grateful that He has given me understanding to read His word.

Second, I watched this documentary . Very moving, and beautiful in a way only Christ can make things beautiful. The grace that oozes from the wives is breathtaking. They are grieving the loss of their husbands to brutal deaths, yet they are proud for their husbands for dying for Christ as Christ died for them. And their children ... oh, the children, so sweet. I bought the video so that I could pass it around. Let me know if you want to watch it.

And, check out www.persecution.com. VOM is a great ministry and I believe it's important to know what is going on with our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world. Persecution is very much alive and well. These believers need prayer, and their stories are powerful.

Third, I love studying God's word. As much as I hate to admit it I need accountability in studying it. I get lazy with it so easily so I am grateful for the ladies who study with me each week and provide the accountability I need. As much as I love it I am still so lazy with doing it, but I really do love it.

God is so real and so powerful and amazing and reveals Himself to me in ways like never before when I am in His word. And, studying the truths for myself allows me to hide them in my heart to draw on. I am so grateful for His grace in my life. I fear where I would be without Him.

Also, I have a new niece Daisy LouAnn. She is beautiful and I can't wait to get my hands on her. She's in TN though. We need to plan when we can get down there. It's amazing how much you can love a little person when you haven't even met them yet.



I mean how could you not just fall in love with that little peanut? ... (sigh)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Riverside Walk

We had a beautiful day on Thursday. Dan, the kids and I went down to the path that runs along the river. The kids loved it. The weather was beautiful.

The kids played on this big red sculpture ...









What's that you say? You can't see the picture? ... Oh right. That's because when we pulled our camera out to take pictures of the kids and the cherry blossoms and the beautiful day by the river we didn't have a memory card in our camera.

The memories will live on in our brains ...

Monday, April 6, 2009

We aren't in Disney anymore ...

My last post mentioned what my friend Jess said about a Disney movie going on at our house recently, what with the bunnies, birds, and rainbows here. Well, today after school the kids noticed this ...
In case you can't tell what it is, it's a pile of feathers that looks as though the bird was plucked before being completely devoured except for a couple of wormy looking red pieces of innards that looked like earth worms ... blech ...

Also, look closely at the next picture. See the yellow things?



Okay, they are kind of hard to see, and they seem to be more orange-red. Those are the pieces of the beak. Poor little bird.

I don't think this happened in Snow White. Sure, a queen sends a man to kill her step-daughter (Snow White) in the woods with a knife. Of course, he has mercy on her, lets her go, is killed by the queen when she finds out he didn't kill Snow White. Then the queen goes and poisons Snow White herself.

But, no birds were being ripped apart. I mean sheesh! We all have limits to the violence we can handle!

And, to think this episode of violence went down in our back yard, our very own gazebo-thingamabob. I wonder if any of our other bird friends saw what happened and are afraid to come into our yard.

I should go sing a song to them ... (I really need to get myself a princess dress)

Happiness Factor

Happiness is ...

Lighting all the candles in the house on a dark rainy morning.

Knowing that a new baby is on the way in our family. (Baby Daisy's due date is today :).

Studying the Bible at my kitchen table with a fresh cup of coffee and a clean kitchen.

Being home with my boy.

The week of Easter, reflecting on the Lord's death and resurrection, all for the sake of our sins.

Knowing Madelyn and Dan have only 2 days of school this week.

Planning for Easter day, knowing how much Elijah LOVES Easter egg hunts. (We did another one for his b-day last year because he asked for it :) His b-day is on the 29th.)

Seeing bright rainbows in the sky.

Kid-isms


Dan took the kids to the Library the other day. The library is near the river so at one point the road dead ends with a yellow fence just after where you need to turn right to go to the library. One of the kids asked what would happen if they drove through the yellow fence. Dan said, "We'd end up in the river." To which Madelyn replied, "Yeah, and none of us can swim!" ha ha ... it's true. Dan can't swim either.

I do think though if they survived the crash over the bank into the river that Dan could stand at that part of the river, but either way I don't want my family crashing into the river by any means. Of course, we did have this conversation though. We also realized that at that point the river was quite high because we got a lot of rain the day before. Isn't it funny how a joke can turn into a real discussion of just what would happen if ...


................................


The kids and I were home the other day. Madelyn and I were in the living room and Elijah was upstairs. Next thing I hear Elijah yelling to someone out the window about coming over. Now, knowing my son and how social he is, I wouldn't be surprised if he saw the neighbor girl or even a stranger and invited them over.

So, I yell up to him and ask him who he is talking to. He said, "The robin! ... Hi robin! Are you coming to my house today?" It was so cute. Madelyn and I cracked up.

Later I heard him say, "Robin, did you go somewhere?" He couldn't see the robin anymore. This was the same day we saw the beautiful rainbow.

The weather had been so crazy that day. We had a ton of rain all morning where it was so dark you felt like it was evening. Then by the time I picked Madelyn up from school the sun was out again and it was quite warm out. They played outside for a bit and then more rain and wind. Then more sun! Then the beautiful rainbow which made it all worth it.

A friend of mine mentioned on FB that it was like a disney movie with the rainbow and the bunnies. It cracked me up. She asked if we broke out into song :) I told her if the birds and the bunnies let me pet them I would have because then I would have known that I really was snow white.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Home Sick

I hate missing church, especially over a dumb cold. I probably would have gone though if I didn't have stomach issues this morning. I had nursery duty though so it's probably best I didn't go with my dripping nose.

So, what did I do instead. Well, first I love Fox News Sunday so I watched that. Then Elijah and I watched a bunch of videos. He is obsessed with Larry Boy right now which is really fun because Larry Boy teaches good manners like controlling your anger, not fibbing, and not telling rumors.

That's not all I did though. While I was plopped on the couch reading one of my favorite blogs I took some pictures of my favorite dog ... Daisy.

I know. Try to control your excitement. Here is your chance to share in the moment.

First, this dog has the life. I'm the sick one, wanting to sleep, but if I did my favorite 3 year old boy would not have left me alone so it would not have been good sleep. So, while he and I shared the love seat, Daisy gets this ...


Tell me she is not spoiled, especially when Dan is not around :)

Next to me was this little cutie pie ...


Our basement is pretty dark, especially with one of the bulbs burned out so the flash was too bright for him. Oh, and see Larry Boy? He is with us pretty much wherever we go these days.
When my eyes were about to close from being so tired I finally made Daisy move. She was being so cute next to me on the couch though. I had to take pictures. It was almost as if she was posing for me.



Isn't she pretty? There are more pictures (believe me ;), but I will just post this one. And, every time I said her name or talked to her she would wag her tail. She scooted closer to me. She's so cute ...



So, after about a million attempts to get her tail wagging in a picture I finally got enough sense to take a video of her. And, well, this is what happened ... (notice her eyes. she always cracks us up when she only moves her eyes to look at us :)




Saturday, April 4, 2009

This is what happens when ...

you send two little children upstairs to get ready for bed and to take the sheets off of one of their beds ...

First, you see this at the top of the stairs (oh my!) ... it seems to be every pillow out of Madelyn and Elijah's rooms ...


Then we see this ...

Here is the live version of it ...





Now Elijah asks me every day if he and Madelyn can take her mattress off and use it like a slide again. We knew they were having a good time upstairs, but we had no idea we would find what we found :)

Beautiful Rainbow

Madelyn was playing outside yesterday after the crazy rain we had here and next thing I know she yells, "There's a rainbow!" Elijah and I ran outside to see it and it was absolutely beautiful. I have never seen one so bright and next thing we know a second one shows up. I went on a bit of a photo spree, but here are just a few of the ones I took ...






As we marveled at God's beauty and Madelyn was saying how many signs of Spring were in our yard a little friend showed up ...



and another one ...



I love God. I love His creations, such beauty.

I just wish these cute little bunnies didn't nibble all of my flowers. It's a good thing they are so cute.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Lazy Day

I am having a lazy day today.

Why? Um ... just because I can really. I don't have a good excuse. I am just being down right lazy. I'm still in my pjs, drinking coffee. I stopped short of snuggling back in my bed again. It is calling to me, but the idea of a coffee spill in my bed doesn't thrill me.

Instead I am nestled on my big comfy chair in the living room.

Elijah loves the computer (admittedly, so do I) so I am taking advantage of the time I have while he plays.

So, besides my feet being a little cold I am quite happy.

I am realizing more and more how much things have calmed down in my life and I am being careful to not take it for granted. All the while enjoying every second of it.

Last year around this time we were running to appts at least every two weeks, or more, depending on sudden vision loss.

Me oh my, those were hectic stressful days.

Dan was swollen and puffy from all the prednisone in his system. We have pictures from his last Birthday and you would hardly know it was him. It's nice to see his face slimming down a bit.

Prayerfully, things will stay calm on that front.

I have been reminded lately too of how much my anxiety got out of control during that time. It got to the point that even a simple doctor appointment for the kids sent me into panic mode. My stomach would be sick even at the doctor's office. I felt like I was going to throw up the one day while the doctor was talking to me. I almost had to tell him I needed to step out. My heart was racing and I just felt awful. I didn't realize why this was happening. I have always been a nervous person, but this was getting ridiculous.

When your life slowly gets crazy over concern for a loved ones health these types of things can creep up on you. I'm glad I know this now. I feel better prepared for myself and better equipped to minister to others who might be in similar situations.

So, back to my life being calmer these days. My baby is turning 4 this month. 4! How did that happen? He is the sweetest boy I know, so huggy and smiley and bright in the sense he lightens people's days. He is super friendly and puts smiles on people's faces wherever he goes. I especially love when elderly people talk to him in the store because he makes them smile and brightens their days.

With him being 4 he is becoming more and more independant so my days aren't filled with crying, feedings, diaper changing, etc. I mean sure he cries at times, and he definitely needs to be fed, but it's simple. And, he's going to go to K4 in the Fall (excuse me while I hyperventilate). It's for 3 hours in the morning for 4 days a week. I know he will love it which is why I am sending him, but I also know I can still change my mind at any time.

All this leads me to, "Now what?" I mean, free time on a regular basis? What does that even feel like, look like? For years now it's been all about babies, but now that I don't plan on having more it's just a weird feeling.

I am sure the "free time" will fly by on those days. I will definitely keep doing my Bible Studies which keep me busy. There is always plenty of laundry, housework, etc. I just feel things changing (in a good way I think), and it's weird.

I will say this though, during those hours of free time I will do my best to not turn every day into a lazy day like today ... I will try anyway ;)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Exercise

Dan came home to exercise over his lunch break. Elijah makes for quite an audience.

He keeps asking him why he's exercising, why he's thirsty, and saying things like, "that's hard isn't it?"

Then he was doing jumping jacks with him.

When I workout he does the same thing with me. One day he was running circles around me while I was doing kicks and dodging my kicks. It was pretty funny.

I also have the added blessing of Daisy dog getting in my face as well. It's weird how as soon as I decide to workout Daisy dog gets all excited and in my face. She'll roll on the floor around me, tail wagging like crazy. I mean there are times I can't even do the pushups or other floor exercises because she is in my way! Dan got to witness this one day and thought it was so funny. Our timid dog gets a little crazy during exercise time.

Now Elijah is getting in Dan's way. I think he just got kicked. Dan asked if he was okay and Elijah told him to kick the other way. Too funny.

Now Elijah is telling him he just kicked the couch. You see, one of Dan's problems with exercising is he is extra extra big. So, during arm exercises he can't reach all of the way up because he hits the ceiling. The ceiling in the basement is pretty low. In the living room he's fine. So, now apparently we have the problem of his legs being too long and he is now kicking furniture.

That's the excitement around here right now. Later it gets even more exciting with a trip to the library and to Bed, Bath & Beyond to return Dan's b-day present. Be sure to stay tuned!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Low Carbs

While it felt good to give up carbs and it gave me a good jump start into exercising regularly and eating right, I have welcomed carbs back into my life.

It felt good to go a full 3 days without any carbs. I felt cleansed, energized, and by the 3rd night just downright hungry.

I never intended to go without carbs forever. I didn't really know what to expect, or how long I could go.

When your stomach is growling at 11 p.m. and carrots just don't settle the growling something's gotta give.

So, now I am just trying to limit my portions and still keep sugars, carbs, processed foods, etc. to a minimum.

Oh, and keep exercising of course.

I do know that I am an emotional eater. Someone let me borrow the book Love to Eat, Hate to Eat. I am looking forward to reading that. A friend had recommended that book a while back so I am glad to have a copy to read now.

Good times! Food. What a blessing and a curse. I am thankful though that we don't just have manna to survive on each day. I do wonder though what kind of creative recipes the Israelites were able to come up with though.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Elijah's Quotes

Today Dan was leaving for work and he is out the door, but Elijah yells, "Wait! I forgot to give you a hug!"

It's not as though Dan didn't say good-bye to Elijah. Elijah just wants that last moment together, just one more hug. So, Dan comes back in. They hug and then as Dan is walking out to the car Elijah yells, "Thank you for coming today!"

Yesterday we were going to pick up Madelyn from school and we have to drive past a couple farms, one being a dairy farm. So, it was a bit stinky yesterday.

Elijah says, "Sometimes I smell a smell so stinky it smells like old hamburger." I said, "Oh, are you smelling that now?" "No."

He is very in tune to his environment where Madelyn isn't so much, at least she doesn't verbalize it like Elijah does.

When I exercise Elijah is right there with me. His comments are pretty funny, but he can also be very encouraging. When I finish the workout he says, "Yay Mommy! You did it!" or "You won!"

One part of the workout involves kicking and the other day he was running circles around me while dodging my kicks. He was having a great time, and to be honest I think it's good for him. The more energy he burns off the better. The kid is oozing with energy.

Smellin' like the house!

Dan comes from a farming family. When the kids were sick or not spending enough time outside his grandfather would say they are starting to smell like the house.

I think that's me this week.

I will readily admit the fact that I am a homebody. I love being home. I love my house. When I am away for any extended amount of time I love my house that much more and so look forward to being home again.

This week I've just been home too much, not enough interaction with adults. I was supposed to get together with a friend on Tuesday, but my stomach was sick so there went that. She did still take Elijah though which was so sweet, but I still just stayed home.

Now I am feeling the effects. I don't want to do anything. I don't want to clean. I don't want to pay bills, make phone calls, anything. I just want to sit and read, play online, veg, you name it.

It's like the smallest task becomes a HUGE one. Not cool. I hate feeling this way, and I fight against it.

So, my plan of attack for the day is to give myself until a certain time to play around. Turn on some fun music and start the things I need to do ... vacuum, pay my tax bill, clean the kitchen, straighten rooms ... and I'll set the timer for each room so I don't get stuck doing one thing for too long.

I'll post an update on how the battle plays out ...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

It Figures ...

I type a post about healthy eating and how good it feels and what happens ... just hours later I am giving in and making rice crispy treats.

The good news ... I didn't binge on them (not that I would do that - yeah right). I still exercised (and I really wanted to resume my position in my bed under the covers reading). And, so far I am sticking to my refusal to have an "all or nothing" mentality. That would normally kill me every time. If I didn't do the program exactly, I would just give up. Well, that's just ridiculous.

Let me explain. Power 90 is a 90 day program, 6 days on 1 day off. Well, I have yet to do it 6 days in a row. Although right now I am on day 4 in a row. But, I am going from no exercise to Power 90. That's a big adjustment, and I just need to do something. So, just the fact that I am getting up off my rear and moving my body is a good thing whether it is every day, every other day or every other week. It's just good to move your body.

So, that's what is going through my mind these days. I give myself these little pep talks. So, so what I had a few rice crispy treats. I didn't buy chocolate cookies and munch away on them like I daydreamed about earlier in the day. Always look on the bright side :)

Enjoying Cooking ... Me?

I have been cooking and trying new recipes a lot lately and it's been surprisingly fun. I don't normally like cooking, but Pioneer Woman has some great easy recipes that have been yummy and fun (www.the pioneerwoman.com).

I've also been cutting out carbs lately. I realized I was obsessing over food WAY more than I should be and I had the extra poundage to prove it. I really feel good now that I cut out a lot of the processed foods and carbs. It's amazing. I have never had any desire to cut carbs before, but this was almost a feeling like I had to for my health's sake. It's been an interesting convicting week concerning food.

I feel like I am living off of farm foods now which seems to me would be a lot healthier. Many veggies and meats and some fruit. Good stuff. I'm not following any specific diet plan, but I have read up on some just to get the idea behind it.

Since I cut carbs I have been exercising a lot more consistently too. I am doing Power 90 and have been consistent with it the last 3 days and haven't even felt like skipping a day. It feels good.

I will admit though that last night and this morning I wanted carbs something feirce, but I didn't give in. I just made my eggs, etc. and have been fine since. And, I know I have taco salad waiting for me for lunch. YUM! So, it's all good.

Although, like I told my friend yesterday, check in with me next week and see how I am doing.

I should say though that I don't plan on doing this forever. I just knew I needed to change my eating habits and this seemed a good way to start. Slowly I have been adjusting our diet in general so little by little I will allow myself some yummies along the way, but still keeping carbs to a minimum.

Fun Weekend

Last weekend my mom had a big Birthday. So, of course a celebration was in order.

She and Nick came up Friday. We played Scrabble. Two games. I lost both. Nick and my Mom both won one. The one Nick won wasn't even close. He used ALL of his letters for a word ... twice! Ugh.

Good times though. Dan was watching March Madness, the one time of year that he watches a ton of games so he was excused from Scrabble.

Saturday I had secretly planned for my mom's family to come and surprise her. I told Mom I was taking her out to lunch, but she didn't know there were going to be 12 of us.

Okay, surprises are stressful.

I didn't tell Madelyn because I didn't want to put her through the torture I was going through, even though I knew she would be SO excited. I didn't tell Nick because he can't keep a secret to save his life. I know this is just a saying, but it's really true with Nick.

I see my Aunt's car pull up, but I knew it would take them a few minutes to get everyone to the door. I tell Madelyn I will help her with her outfit and then she says for all to hear ...

"Is anybody else coming today?"

Ummm ...

Dan and I don't lie to each other, never have, even when it comes to surprises. Dan is far more gifted in this ability. I can't "fudge" things to save my life (I'm like Nick). We don't lie to our children either. So, here is where I confess something ...

I lied. I told Madelyn that no one else was coming and "why would you think someone else is coming?" (nervous laugh) ...

Then I pull her aside and whisper, "Yes, other people are coming, but it's a surprise and Mom-mom doesn't know."

She replies, for all to hear, and very matter of factly, "Mommy I won't tell Mom-mom!"

Quick poor cover of more nervous laughter and then my family walks in ...

I am not kidding when I say I had a stres blister on my lip from all of this secrecy. Secrets wear me out! I don't think I will try to pull anymore surprises for a long time. It was fun though.

We had a lovely lunch. Elijah was in full entertainment mode asking EVERYONE what they were having. It was very cute.

We came back for cake and ice cream and coffee ... YUM! (especially since I just gave up carbs for a bit). I won't mention that I over cooked the cake and one of the tea bags broke while brewing ... oh wait, I think I just mentioned that.

This is why I don't bake much. I will admit that I am enjoying cooking more though so I will stick with that since I HAVE to do that for my family.

All in all a good weekend. I think my mom had a Happy Birthday. Mission Accomplished, and then I crashed that night.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Snuggly Girl

The other night I was hugging Madelyn goodnight and she said, "I wish I could sleep with you every night." I laughed, and she said, "I'm not kidding."

I knew she wasn't kidding. I told her so and said, "Honey, I've known that since you were a teeny baby swaddled in my arms you didn't want to leave my side."

I have said many times that Madelyn would be thrilled to just be by our (mine or Dan's) sides continually. We were her security blankets, pacifiers, you name it. She was content with us.

I was relaying my labor story with Madelyn to Susan last night because Susan wants to have a natural birth. I did too until Madelyn decided she didn't want to come out of the womb. They had to start pitocin to get things going. Then I HAD to have an epidural. After prepping me for a c-section she finally decided to come out.

I thought, "Hmmm, it really has been since the womb that Madelyn has been this way."

I love my little snuggly girl, and I wouldn't want her any other way. I think she's the best!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Baby Heads

My pregnant friend was over the other day. She is expecting twins.

She and Elijah were having a conversation about the size of her belly so she said to him, "I don't just have one baby in there. I have 2 babies!"

"Wow!" Elijah says ... points to her (you know whats) and says, "And you have their heads in there too!"

ha ha ha ha! ... ah, I love my boy ...

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happiness is ...

A cool breeze blowing through open windows. It's almost a little too cool, but a sweater will make it all okay.

Add to that studying God's Word as an incredible part of His creation blows through the room and around the chair you are sitting on. It's beyond just general happiness. I don't know what the word would be, but it does something for the soul.

Ahhh, forget that there are toys and pillows strewn about the floor. That's what playing with friends is all about when you are almost 4.

Oh, and did I mention sunshine? Again, my soul ... it feels healthy in this environment ...

Speaking of happy ...

It's his general state of being, and I wouldn't want it any other way.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Roller Coaster Day

Didn't sleep well last night. Dan actually had to wake me from a bad dream. Apparently, I was whispering like the Others from Lost. ha ha ... that made me laugh, but in my dream I was yelling. It was awful. I won't bore you with the details, but it was Heroes related for anyone who watches that show. People were coming after Claire. I don't know. It was crazy.

Then Elijah woke me up around 2 because he wet the bed and needed help with that. Then again came down because he needed a drink.

Got Madelyn to school, wanted to crawl back in bed, but didn't. I ate and had coffee, and was waking up a bit. I felt good. I did my Power 90, some things around the house. Then I realized the day was disappearing rather quickly. I was making a grocery list when Dan's mom got here. She was on her way home. It was a nice little surprise and a very short visit.

Later I went to pick up Madelyn. I had food packed for a friend who is pregnant, but it turns out I missed her. She picked her daughter up early. Bummer.

Then I had to go into the school. Some days I like going in because it's fun to catch up with people. Today I didn't. I just am not feeling social today. I am enjoying just being home and feeling a bit like a hermit. But, I went in anyway because I need grocery cards that a portion of them are credited to our tuition.

Of course, on the way in I meet a mom of one of Madelyn's friends. First impressions. Ugh. Of course, I have flip flops on (in March) with my comfy pants that were only worn in public because I put my long sweater on. Yeah, not so cute. Oh, and no makeup. Ugh. Meanwhile, she's working mom so she is dressed nicely, makeup, and is skinny as a twig, and she's had twins. Ugh again.

We go in ... Elijah is nutso. For those of you who know him, you may remember how he likes to just run into things and fall over for no apparent reason. Well, he goes barreling towards the 2nd grade classroom door! These doors are like one big window with glass panes so the teacher could see him. Thankfully, he stopped right before he reached the door. I get Madelyn. She and Elijah go tearing down the hall together (no running in the halls right?)

I finally catch up to them when Elijah slams Dan's office door shut. These doors are so heavy. They are the solid wood doors with a big window in the top. It echoes. I am telling Elijah to not do what he is doing so he's looking back at me while he is walking and tumbles down the stairs, hits his head, and does a weird twist/flip. Oh my.

Now he is screaming. I still haven't gotten my grocery cards because Carol was busy when I first went in. Now I have a bunch of ladies peering over the stairs asking if he's okay, do we need ice, etc. Meanwhile, I am so frustrated with him for all of his running and disobedience. I probably seemed kind of harsh, but ugh!!!

Finally, I make it outside where Madelyn is playing with her friends and she tells me she doesn't want to go home. I just grab her back pack and walk to the car. Of course she comes soon after and gets in the car. She doesn't understand why I just want to go home (and crawl under the covers and pretend I am alone ... just kidding ... no I'm not).

We get home and I am trying to explain to Elijah why I was not happy with him and how he needs to obey and pay attention to what he is doing. All the while he is walking backwards away from me and trips over his toy truck on the floor! Another explanation and then he is sent to his room to play. He is not happy about this and when I find him he is in his bed crying. So pathetic. I knew he was tired because I had to wake him up at 8 so we could take Madelyn to school.

I laid down with him. We snuggled and chatted and then we both fell asleep. Madelyn did her homework, such a good girl. And, Elijah is still sleeping, not good. He's going to be awake for a while tonight.

Oh, and did I mention Elijah started coughing again?

So, for a day that had such potential it turned out to be an overall blah day. Here's to tomorrow being better.

And, if you made it this far into the post, you win an award. It's an invisible heart shaped thank you award. You will get it in the mail soon.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Christmas 2008

Remember I lost my camera and then found it about a month ago? Well, I finally uploaded the pictures and videos which were mostly from Christmas.

This video is dedicated to Aunt Susan and Uncle Josh since they are the ones who gave Elijah this costume ...



Friday, March 13, 2009

I Knew It!

Okay, maybe not, but I did talk to God about it.

Dan mentioned recently that if there is something that you need or want then you should talk to God about finding it for free somewhere instead of wracking up a bunch of debt, etc. Dan is going to a financial seminar thing that a guy he knows is doing and this is what the guy said one night.

So, when I knew I needed a new dresser I talked to God about this. I knew we wouldn't ever go to a furniture store to buy a bedroom suit, but even a few hundred dollars for furniture right now is a stretch. I knew I would be able to find a bargain I would just have to wait for it.

Well, it's here. We are getting one for free. We go look at it tonight. It belongs to Dan's grandparents. His mom is in town now cleaning out their house and she asked if there was anything we needed. I asked here what there was and she started listing things off, and mentioned the bedroom suit.

Um, hello!

She did make a point to say it is 35 years old because they bought it after they got married. But, it's in great condition. It's real wood, etc. I told her I wasn't picky. I just wanted something that was real wood, still in nice condition, and for a good price. Um, free is a good price.

We go look at it tonight and then we will just need to find a truck to get it all here. Yay! I actually love the fact that it is so old and belonged to his grandparents. They are wonderful godly people. His grandfather is in glory now and Elva his grandmother is in a nursing home now. So sad.

Alton and Elva. Lois' mom died when she was 46. Lois was only 19. Her mom had been sick with kidney issues and she told Alton that if he were to get married again he should marry Elva. Elva was 50 when she married Alton, her first marriage. I still stand by my statement that they are the cutest old couple I have ever known. They were so happy together and just did everything together. The biggest thing though is that they would pray for everyone in the family every day. They alternated days for her family and Alton's family. I know that I have experienced the effect of those prayers, even when Dan and I were first dating. I have always been so thankful for those prayers. Wonderful wonderful people those two. Alton was talking to the hospice nurses about the Lord up to the very end. They just love the Lord so much.

Such a legacy.

....

Happiness feature time:

Friends
Free stuff :)
Productive days
Good dogs
Drawers full of clean laundry

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Dreams

So, this is what I dream the other night ...

The mother of a guy Dan and I barely knew in college was winning an award for most creative piece of architecture. The piece? An underwater McDonalds ... in a mall.

That's right. You would walk by the water and only see the roof of the McD's sticking out. You had to go to the lower level to get into it. Pretty clever huh? (Don't steal my dreamy idea!)

Yeah, but it was all in my dream. I am friends with the guy on FB and I guess from seeing his status update I ended up dreaming about all of this.

After the awards ceremony we went out to eat with him at Bucca de Bepo and never got waited on. It was very frustrating and we eventually left. We complained and everything. Argh.

Of course, the logical question that Dan asked when I told him my dream was "Why didn't we just eat at the McDonalds?" That's a very good question. I only have so much control in my dreams though. What's a girl to do?

Oy. My dreams only went from there.

I was going to spare you the details of the dream I had after that, but decided against that because I thought (in my dream) that I was funny in my dream.

I was on an investigative reporting team that was going to check out what was supposed to be a filthy house. Well, besides some dog doo in the yard it really wasn't that bad.

We go in and there were just a bunch of guys sleeping in there. The place was huge and there was a guy sleeping on the sofa and other random places in the house. It seemed like a drug house (which it was), but it wasn't full of filth like I expected. The carpet felt icky. How do I know? Oh, I was just wearing socks ... again, I only have so much control in my dreams.

It turned out I knew the guy sleeping on the couch. He woke up. We said our hellos and then he asked what was going on. I said we were there to check out the house because it was thought to be filthy ... and here comes my funny line ... ready? ... I told him if he wanted more details he would "have to watch Dateline on Friday to find out the rest" ... ha! I thought I was so clever.

Sometimes my dreams drive me crazy, but other times they provide some good amusement for myself. I'm kind of glad I dream.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Happiness and Lent

I have to admit that the things I gave up for Lent really make me happy ... chocolate candy, pastries, and donuts.

Now, I know they are not good for you. That alone is a good reason to give these things up. I have also been trying to exercise lately, and I emphasize "trying." I gave them up because people kept talking about Lent. I think it's good to fast or give something up for the Lord at times so I jumped on board.

I don't know the meaning of Lent. I don't know why it's called Lent. I need to google it and get some info on it, but I just look at it as a form of fasting.

But, boy oh boy do I miss those things.

The donuts is probably the hardest because well, I love them. YUM! There were some at church this morning, along with pastries, but I resisted. It felt good. I felt strong.

But, these days, when the female hormones have me all out of whack I want me some comfort food. It's terrible. I'm sleepy, unmotivated, and just feel hungry constantly.

The thing is I honestly think I can go without donuts and pastries for a while. They really are an indulgence. Chocolate is a whole other story. Thankfully, I only gave up chocolate candies, namely because the hershey's chocolate that is on major clearance from V-day. Therefore, I can still have chocolate cookies. Hence the reason Madelyn no longer has lunch snacks.

Ugh.

Well, here's to comfort food and keepin' on keepin' on ... I hate these days of the month (sorry to any man reading this blog - namely Dan ;) ...

Friday, March 6, 2009

Happiness Feature

In college I had a book that a woman wrote that just listed all the things that made her happy. I forget how many there were all together. I have since gotten rid of the book, but I think it was 1001 things. She just started writing things down that made her happy and eventually wrote a book that sold at least one copy. Mine!

I like being happy, as I think most people do. And, I think it's important to be reminded of things that make us happy. There are so many factors in this fallen world that can bring us down so let's take time and focus on happy things.

Hence, the happiness feature on my blog, and I would love for whoever reads this to add what makes them happy whenever they want to post something that makes them happy.

Today these are the things that make me happy ...

Getting checks in the mail.
The first signs of Spring (my daffodils are growing :)
Snuggling with my boy who seems to be getting bigger by the minute.
Accomplishing a major grocery trip and knowing I have food in the house to last a while.
Hearing my children happily playing together.

Ah, happiness ...

Tidbits

I am so sleepy today. I think something is wrong with my eye. It was really bothering me last night like there was something in it and this morning it was crusty. Lovely huh?

I took Madelyn to school, got the car washed, and then went grocery shopping, and when I got home I still just felt so so sleepy. I was going to make coffee, but instead laid down while Elijah watched tv.

Okay, meanwhile, Elijah cannot leave me alone if I am in the room with him. I laid down on the couch in the basement while he was watching pbskids. Well, he was so happy to have me there that he is sitting on me, laying on me, hugging me, scrunching up next to me. It is very sweet, and would be much sweeter if he could just settle in and stop moving, but he can't. He moves constantly in one way or another.

I was able to get some rest though, surprisingly. I still feel like I could just crawl in bed and stay there all day. My eye still feels weird, but it doesn't look bad. It just feels like there is something going on. I just don't know what.

...

I cut a lady off today (kind of) and ugh, it turns out she was going the same place I was. Ugh! It's a little grocery outlet so it's small and I she pulled in right behind me so she knew who I was and there was no way around not seeing her. I honestly wanted to hide. Instead I swallowed my pride and when I saw her in the store I apologized. She was kind of taken aback, but I told her I thought there were two lanes, etc. She said she thought the same thing and just let me go. She was very sweet about it, but I still wanted to crawl under somewhere and hide. It all was so silly, and I still am surprised at how worked up I got over it, but it's not often that I am in such an awkward position. I'm just glad it's over. So silly.

...

I am going to make french onion soup again this weekend. It is so yummy! I made it and ate it for the first time a few weeks ago. What is it about that soup? I mean we had leftovers and by the time we were done eating them I was a little grossed out by the fact I was eating a mouthful of onions, but now here I am REALLY wanting it again. YUM!

...

My high school principal just died from pancreatic cancer that ended up spreading to his lungs. My dad just had surgery to remove a growth in his pancreas before it became cancerous. That is HUGE! Usually you don't know anything is wrong until it's too late. My step-mother said they feel as though they have been given a gift, and I do believe they have. I am very sad for Dr. Thompson's family. He was only 60.

...

I've mentioned before that Daisy hides treats and things. Well, now I keep finding little piles of food in random places. The cats have started munching on her food so I wonder if she is trying to keep it from them. It's a little weird though to go in your bedroom and find a pile of dog food next to your bed.

I do love that dog though. She is the sweetest of all dogs. Have I mentioned my love for her before? I can't wait until the weather is warm so we can go on long walks, etc. again.

...

Our car that Dan wrecked is in the shop to be fixed. We haven't heard the extent of the damage. It's a 1997 Honda Accord. We just had the transmission replaced a couple years ago because we know Hondas can go forever if taken care of so that was our plan. Dan only drives it to work and occasionally we take it other places. It's a good car, but we are thinking it's not worth much so we are wondering if the insurance company is going to be willing to pay to have it fixed. We'll see.

Just in case, I have been looking into other vehicles ... I hate the thought of a car payment because right now we don't have one, but I do love the idea of having a car that we can seat friends and family when they come to visit. I saw one at CarSense that is reasonable and nice ... just in case. It's a sporty looking minivan type car that has the tiny 3rd row seat that you can flip up if needed. And, if you don't need it you have a lot of room for stuff in the back.

I honestly hate paying for cars though so I really am not thinking about it too much.

...

This is a lot of rambling, but I am putting off cleaning up the kitchen. If I would just do it, I wouldn't have to worry about anything else until dinner time. I just saw Kim's status on FB saying her house is clean and she can just relax. I thought I could feel the same way if I would just get my kitchen together, but I haven't done it yet. I just feel funky today. I will do it soon though. I try to have things in order for when Dan gets home.

Okay, enough rambling today ...

Bummer

So, on my quest for a new inexpensive bedroom set, I actually found one. The problem ... I didn't move quickly enough. I found it on Craigslist for $150!! It was real wood and in great condition too! By the time I inquired they had already sold it though. I am happy for them that they sold it, but I did cry myself to sleep.

Okay, that was a lie. The truth is I wasn't sure about it, but it was a great deal. And, I always feel in situations like this that it just wasn't meant to be.

So, the quest continues ...

Thursday, March 5, 2009

I Need Spring

I know everyone says they can't wait for Spring, but I NEED Spring.

When I start to have fantasies about running off to a warmer climate or another country even, I know that something (like the coming of Spring) needs to happen soon. I need the warm weather to take away these icky germs that are plaguing us and our friends. This winter has been TERRIBLE in that way.

It's sad too because generally the winters have been kinder to us. My kids used to always get sick all the time, but we've learned to manage their symptoms to where they don't get too bad. Well, so much for that this winter. It's been nuts!

If I was the only one going through this, I would really worry that it was something about my house, or our environment, but SO MANY of our friends and Madelyn's classmates have been going through the same thing.

So, Spring, if you can hear me, get your toosh over here right now and clear away these germs! I promise I won't complain if you bring a lot of rain with you. Just please, please come and blow away all the germs.

Thank you in advance.