Sunday, May 31, 2009
There is a common thread to each of these stories-----
- Joel was on the stage, leading worship. I was 'keeping down the fort' by myself in the pew. Cosette was beside me on the seat. I saw her out of the corner of my eye climb down off of the pew. I bent down to admonish her to climb back up, until I saw what she was doing. She had gently laid her baby doll down on the pew, and was wiping it ever so gently. Then, she wrapped a make-believe diaper up around it's legs. She looked up at me and mouthed "I'm changing her diaper, Mama"
- I was slowly rocking Noah in my arms today before his nap, his head on my shoulder. I was singing him his usual bed-time song, and gently patting his back. I was a little surprised then, that as I sang, he reached back and began to gently pat my back.
- Noah threw his cup on the floor for the second time. Cosette looked at him with her eye-brow raised ever so slightly and said, "Noah, no no. If you throw your cup again, you won't be able to have it. Be obedient, okay Noah??" Just like Papa would say it....
- Cosette came to me the other day: "Mama, I want to start brushing my teeth before breakfast and after breakfast, and after lunch, and before naptime, and after dinner, and before bed, okay?" (Yep, you guessed it, she gets this from me....)
- I lowered my arms from the worship music for a minute to glance down and check on Eli. There he was, with his own arms raised, eyes closed, doing his best to sing along with the words. Every now and then, he'd bow his head as if in prayer and do a gentle little dance type thing with his arms and upper body. He peeked at me from the corner of his eye to get my approval..
Your children are watching. What are you teaching them?
Thursday, May 28, 2009
So, we started out our Thursday with.....Bagels for breakfast--Eli's favorite!!!
Around mid-morning, Uncle Wray dropped in to say hello on his way to work. The kids love these surprise visits from my brother.
After Wray left, we headed out to the library, where Cosette enjoyed sitting and reading in her favorite rocking chair.
During the kids afternoon nap, I planted my strawberry patch! I know, it doesn't look that impressive right now. The strawberries are still teeny, tiny little plants, so you can hardly tell they are there, but trust me, they are :)
Then, while I gave a piano lesson, the kids helped Joel outside. We've been doing alot of outside/yard cleanup this year, and Joel's latest project is cleaning up the back area of the house so we can put a picnic table out there. This is what he was working on tonight. And yes, that is Cosette with the wheel-barrow--my 'always eager to help' girl! Don't worry, she didn't make it very far with it :)
After dinner, I surprised everybody with some strawberry crisp for dessert. We had never had this before, but it was delicious!
Oh, and here is a random picture of the new swing-set Joel put up for the kids. They love it!
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Cosette said tonight, as Joel was stacking dinner dishes: "Daddy, can't you come wrestle now? Mommy always cleans up dinner so you can wrestle with us!" This is far, far from the truth---Joel always helps clean up dinner, but we found it amusing none the less :)
Maybe one day when our kids are older, we'll be one of those nice families who take walks after dinner, or sit on their front porch, or play games---but for now, we wrestle :)
(By the way, is this like in the un-written code of being a father? "Must be able to wrestle and play wild games" I remember climbing up my own dad's legs as a little girl, and then flipping over upside down. I loved it!)
Sunday, May 24, 2009
And it just made me realize----How stupid I am sometimes. How much time I waste here on earth over things that don't matter! I find myself getting all uptight if the house gets a little unorganized or I'm not 'caught up'. Shouldn't I just be glad that I had three beautiful children running through it all day?? I find myself occasionally snapping at Joel in tiredness over piddly (is that a word?) little things that don't matter. I actually found myself thinking in annoyance the other day "I wish he'd put that pile of clothes away!" Dumb, Dumb, Dumb! This is the guy that I love, the guy I will do anything to have an evening out with, the guy who is the father of my children, the guy who treats me like gold, literally. So, forget the stupid little pile of laundry, and go tell that awesome man how much you love him!
Oh, when I'm having a 'tired' day, or feeling grouchy, or not having 'an eternal perspective', I'm going to ask Joel to remind me to come back and read this post. Hopefully it will re-focus me.
So, go give your kids a hug. Tell your spouse how much you love him/her. Call your mom up and share your favorite memory from when you were a child. Call your best friend and treat them to coffee and donuts. This life is too precious to waste!
Saturday, May 23, 2009
- It was a good week. No, a great week! So great, that I forgot to take any pictures to share :( Not a single one! Sorry. I guess it will just have to be a week that my family remembers in our heads :)
- My husband is so wonderful. Of the three projects around our house that I mentioned in a previous post, he has finished all but one. He just has to complete the last part of my raised beds, and he's done! (The left side of my raised beds are done and ready to plant, hopefully Monday). He finished the kids swing set this week, and they are loving that!
- I read an interesting idea on a blog this week. A mother of quads says that she hardly ever gets everything on her 'to do list' done. She simply prioritizes it, and does the most important things first. Then, the unfinished things get moved onto the next day. I like that! As a mom, it's a lesson I've had to learn. As my mom says, 'Everything will not always be done!", or something like that :) I sometimes get frustrated when I 'catch up', only to turn around and find something else 'undone' again. But this idea helps---it will never all be done, and that's okay. That's part of the nature of my job as mom! This has always been a fault of mine, with my 'let's get it all done right now' type of personality. God is working on me with this....
- We had a wonderful time with Joel's immediate and extended family today, as we celebrated his Aunt's 50th birthday. I love that both sides of our family are very close, and my kids are growing up under the shadow of supporting and loving Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, etc. That means so much to me!!
- I bought strawberry plants today. I'm kind of excited about that. I've never planted strawberries before, so I don't know how they'll do. I hadn't thought about them until Joel's mom mentioned them.
- I am enjoying reading through 'My Utmost for His Highest' by Oswald Chambers again. There are so many good 'old classics' that I need and want to read, but this is one that I frequently come back to, just as an afternoon 'quick' quiet time while the kids are napping. It always helps to re-focus my mind and get me ready for the second half of the day.
- Cosette had a 'break-through' moment this week. Now, if you don't know my kids, I have to tell you that Eli just naturally has a more 'soft heart', ready to apologize and quick to forgive. Cosette is working on that :) So, to make a long story short, after being talked to sternly about something she had done wrong, she showed no signs of a repentant heart. I let her go, wondering if I had done all that I could, praying that what I had said would sink in. Shortly afterwards, she came to me and, on her own, apologized and said she was sorry. Then, she said that she knew that I was right, and she realized that now. She gave me a hug, and I was able to tell her I loved her. I felt that she had a truly repentant heart, and our 'reconciliation' was so sweet. It's so encouraging as a parent to know that your child is making right choices like that.
And now that I've unloaded all of that from my brain, I'm free to think about those chocolate-chip oatmeal cookies on my counter.....
Friday, May 22, 2009
You see, their Daddy just finished an awesome, amazing swing set for them in the back yard, and they do not stop once during the day. I make them stay inside to eat breakfast, do Bible devotions, get dressed, and do a little 'schoolwork'. Then, they are headed outside, and they run all day long. One hour of playtime/exercise?? Try six or seven hours! They work up such healthy appetites, Cosette has been wiping her dinner plate out in five minutes flat!
And.....it's 7:20 in the morning, and THEY'RE STILL ASLEEP!!!!! WOO HOOO!!!
What to do with this extra time? Take a shower? Clean the bathroom? Start a load of laundry? Write a letter to our Compassion Child? Pay some bills? Scrub the kitchen floor? Read a book?The possibilities are endless....
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
So, here are the prizes (What, did I not mention prizes? That's because there weren't any until I saw who the winners were ;0) Mom---Your prize is a whole evening of babysitting your grandchildren. Joel--Your prize is a date out with your wife while mom watches the kids :) :) :) Sneaky, aren't I???
By the way, just to make the rest of you laugh: There's a song we sing in church sometimes that goes " You are on Your throne, You are God alone." Well, the other day, Eli was singing it in his sweet, 'soprano' little boy voice, and we heard these words: "You are on Your throne, You leave God Alone!"
Monday, May 18, 2009
I have mixed up a bunch of old pictures of Noah and Eli from when they were roughly the same age. Your job is to see how many times you can correctly identify the boy in these pictures. Just leave me a comment, and starting at the top, label each one 1,2,3, etc, and tell me which boy you think it is! :)
Sunday, May 17, 2009
1. Tomorrow--Along with my sister-in-law, watch all the nieces and nephews so that all the other relatives can go clean my other sister-n-law's house, who is due with her fourth baby any time now. So, tomorrow, that'll make eight children, all four years old and under, playing together at Grandma's house, with us two 'Aunts' watching them---should be fun :) Oh, and I think we're going to have a pizza party with them---that, I know will be fun :) Oh, and Cosette was invited to a birthday party right in the middle of this afternoon. Fortunately, it's right down the road, so I will be taking Cosette to that while all the other younger children are (hopefully) napping :)
2. On Wednesday, Eli has his three-year-old check up. Only, we just switched all the kids over to a pediatrician's office (yay!!!!!), so it'll be our first visit there. Joel's going with me so we can get a solid 'first impression' of the office, the doctors, etc. Then, we're going to make a day of it and go do our weekly grocery shopping as well :)
3. We've been trying to start a small group Bible study at our house, and we're hoping to have one this week.
4. If my sister-in-law's baby decides to come this week, I'll be watching her little girl for her for a few days. Cosette is SUPER excited to have her cousin spend some time with us!
5. Try to nurse a 10 month old who is fighting nursing constantly. I. must. win. Let me repeat that---I WILL win! I am so not ready to wean him, but, unless he's really sleepy, he's just too active to want to sit still long enough to nurse. It's really frustrating for me, but I'm not giving up. That little boy and I have two more good months to see it through, and see it through I will. At twelve months, he can have his heart's content of cow's milk, but until then, he's stuck with me!!
6. I hope one day this week to start planting my garden. Joel finished my raised beds, and they look wonderful! Fresh tomatoes, peppers, onions, radishes, green beans, peas, squash....yum, gotta love summer!
So, it's a full week. More busy than some, but that's okay. The busy weeks always make me grateful for the 'not so busy' weeks ;)
Saturday, May 16, 2009
- Joel refuses to buy new clothing. Well, not really, but he hardly ever does. I tease him that the pack of colored T-shirts he bought before we were married are still his 'new' T-shirts :) I do, however, remember him buying a pack of new socks since we've been married.... :) There are some things, however, that I hope he never gets rid of....like the green sweater he used to wear in high school that just made me fall head over heels in love with the guy!! :)
- I'm a little bit of a germ freak. If my kids have been in the shopping cart at WalMart, I want them to scrub their hands. If they've been to Sunday School---I want them to scrub their hands! If they ...well, you get the picture. Sounds crazy, I know, but if you've ever been puked on by a two year old, you know that it's nice to avoid this at whatever cost....
- Cosette often falls asleep on her bedroom floor. We have no idea why. We tuck her into her bed at night, and when we go to check on her later, she'll be sound asleep in the middle of the floor, with no pillow and no blanket. Go figure! We have to move her back to her bed!
- Eli would eat bagels for breakfast every morning if I let him. Every morning! Oh, and when he puts an 'ewwy' in the potty, he jumps up, flings his arms open wide and says to me 'Ta Da!' ( I know, I know, for you non-parents out there, that one was a bit much....maybe I shouldn't do blog posts at midnight.... :) And let's hope my children don't read this post years from now....
- And Noah....well.....I'm not sure he's old enough to have any weird habits. Oh no, wait, I remembered one. Since he was just a wee little thing, he has always pulled on my hair while nursing. He gets it all wrapped around his fingers, and then pulls and pulls to try to get it undone. OUCH! I've tried and tried many different ways to get him to stop, but nothing has worked. I guess he just likes the soothing comfort of rubbing Mommy's hair :)
And there you go. Five weird things about our family. Hope you laughed :)
Thursday, May 14, 2009
Why I love my man:
- He lets me stick my ice-cold feet on his warm legs night after night after night. He never even complains about it. (Yeah, he jumps every once in a while, but only if he's sound asleep! Who wouldn't?)
- He calls at lunch time 'just to say hi'.
- I can send him a plain old peanut butter and jelly sandwich in his lunch box, and he'll say "Wow, that was a really filling lunch you sent today!" :)
- He washed the dishes for me last night
- He calls me 'Love'
- He is putting up a new swing set for our kiddos
- He never complains about my crazy, wiry, thick head of hair that constantly sheds all over the bathroom floor. He says it's 'beautiful'
- He preaches awesome, inspired messages
- He always compliments my cooking, and never complains about 'what's for dinner'
- He sat down and read five chapters of Little House on the Prairie to Cosette tonight--he was reading until his voice was sore, and she kept begging for more!
- He can carry in the entire grocery order in one trip. That's like six bags per arm! It takes me at least four trips to get it all in!
- He is so 'consistent'--no, 'easy-going'--no, 'level-headed'---I'm not sure what the right word is. Maybe 'even-tempered?' He has never raised his voice at me or lost his temper, never. When I ripped a hole in the back of the bumper on our car last year, and the bumper was dangling to the ground, he simply said "Well, that's life. I'm glad you didn't hurt yourself." Even when I'm grumpy and irritable, he's always 'the same'. I guess you could say that he really does exemplify the idea of ''love your wife as Christ loved the church.''
So, men, do these things give you any ideas? Want to make your wife happy? Tell her that her hair is beautiful :) Surprise her and wash the dinner dishes. Impress her by carrying in all the groceries at once :) Next time she does something stupid like put a dent in the car, smile and say "Wow, honey, that makes the car look so much more interesting!" You never know, before long, she may be fixing your favorite brownies....;)
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Monday: Zucchini Lasagna, Salad, Crusty white bread (We all liked this lasagna, but decided it was nothing spectacular. I would make it again it I had extra zucchini or something)
Tuesday: BLT's with Kaymak dressing, tomato soup, chips and fruit with chocolate sauce for dessert. (This was good, except the kaymak dressing was a little too spicy for Cosette---it was a cream cheese, feta cheese, garlic spread, and she didn't paticularly like it.)
Wednesday: B-B-Q Grilled Chicken, Baked Potatos, and steamed squash/zucchini (Everybody enjoyed this meal)
Thursday: Sweet potato burritos, steamed broccoli and applesauce
Friday: Pizza and Root Beer (Well, Root Beer for the grown-ups. Cosette and Eli still think that soda is a 'big person' drink, which is fine with me!!)
Saturday: Creamed tuna over toast, frozen veggies with cheese
Sunday: Eating with family, take a salad
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Monday, May 11, 2009
But in reality, it was a 'normal' day on the home-front. Oh, don't get me wrong. Some days are filled with those 'hallmark' moments, where precious, sweet children all clean and dressed in pink dresses curl up on your lap and call you 'Mother'. Some days, yes.....
But most days, are like today. 'Real days' in the life of a mom. Real days, where you fight to get their attention every moment of the day. Where they somehow get lasagna from the kitchen onto your white bathroom rug. Real days, where there are loads of laundry to fold, and dishes to wash. Real days, where they break the second glass picture frame this week, and color with crayon on your front window.
Real days, where you smile in delight as they remember their memory passage. Real days, where you watch your baby boy taking his first steps. Real days, where you hear your daughter say "You can have the bigger piece, that's okay". Real days, as you listen to your daughter chatter non-stop and rejoice when your son gets another color correct.
These are the 'real days' of Motherhood. And yes, it was another day like that. Easy? No. Fulfilling, loving, enjoyable, and full of Thanksgiving? You better believe it.
Saturday, May 09, 2009
As a side note, my husband, who is more wonderful than I can ever describe in words here, took me out to Uno's for Mother's Day on Friday night. I think I ate enough for an entire week! I stuffed myself with Onion Rings, Sirloin Tips, a baked potato with sour cream, a huge salad, a Parmesan Bread stick, and then, as if that wasn't enough already, we split an oreo fudge brownie with ice cream and fudge topping. Oh my! I have to admit it, my husband really knows what makes me happy ;) (All this after my last post on not 'super-sizing' our food---oh well, it was Mother's Day ;)
Thursday, May 07, 2009
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
Anyway, it's been a tough week, and here are a few pieces of the 'real' me that I've been struggling with this week--
- I hate getting up early. Let me repeat that. I. Hate. Getting. Up. Early! Now, let me explain. 6:30 or 7:00 would be perfect for me. Even six would be feasible. But, to make it up before my kids and have any amount of decent quiet time, that alarm has to go off before 6:00-- like, 5:30, and I HATE it! As much as I try to be a morning person, and I try to encourage you all on here to have early morning devotions---let me just be honest---I hate getting up early. The really annoying part is, there is NO other option. I've tried sleeping later and trying to squeeze my devotions in another part of the day---and it just doesn't work. For one thing, my day just gets too crowded and busy with the kids. For another, I LIKE having them first thing in the morning---but why, oh WHY can't we wait until it's actually morning, and not 'really, really late at night??' Six hours of sleep just isn't cutting it for me, and my body is starting to complain--need...more....sleep...... Why not just go to bed earlier, you ask? Oh, I see, you've never had kids!
- I feel like I can't keep my house clean. Seriously. I clean one room, and then I move on to the next. When I turn around, the kids have made a mess in the room that I just finished cleaning! It's not clean anymore! And nobody even got to see it for the whole, oh say, five minutes that it was actually clean! I take Joel to the room and say "See this room? It was clean earlier today...just so you know." So does what I do matter?? Sometimes I wonder.....
- I feel like sometimes I work hard at things just to have them 'undone'. For instance, a few months ago, Joel and I spent several hours...no, days.....organizing five years worth of pictures into chronological order, and putting them in albums. Today, Eli dumped a whole album out and messed up my chronological order. WHY?? I don't know. *sigh*
- And finally, as much as I posted a nice, positive 'Happy Birthday Eli' post yesterday, that's not at all how I saw it. Oh, he had a blast, but---I spent all weekend planning his party to have with his grandparents, aunts and uncles and cousins---which, for Joel and my family, equals approximately 24 people. So, I spent hours on Saturday walking through WalMart buying 32 hotdogs, hotdog buns, cupcake mix, cupcake decorating icing and supplies, party hats and plates, a huge tub of icecream, a bunch of chips, a watermelon we'll never be able to eat...the list goes on. But it was okay, because Eli was going to have a fun party. And THEN, he wakes up sick the morning of the party! We had to cancel the whole thing. Now, I've got 32 hotdogs frozen in my freezer, along with 25 cupcakes, 32 hotdog buns, and...I'm going to get fat because I really like the huge tub of strawberry icecream!! ;)
SO ..there you go. You've probably never heard me rant and rave so much on here. Just been one of those weeks. I think I may have to drive me and the kids out to Pilot tomorrow and pick up some kind of fancy coffee----my week is just screaming "Help me!", and coffee might do the trick :) In the meantime, that buzzing alarm is getting closer and closer, so...goodnight!