Friday, May 30, 2008

Hats off to the Grad!!!

My babiest of brothers (I have three) will be graduating from high school this weekend. There are two brothers between he and I. I was 12 (almost 13) years old when he was born. I vividly remember the day he was born. I vividly remember peaking in on him through the glass of the nursery. I remember handing out bubble gum "It's a boy" cigars at a birthday party I went to just after he was born. I remember that he was the "keeper meeter" I judged guys I brought home by. If guys I brought home paid attention to him they were golden! There were only a couple of dance dates that didn't seem too interested. But all the boys that I actually had "crushes" on or who I was actually dating did great! :) I remember how MAD he was at me when he learned that I would be getting married and moving out of the house. I remember how cute he was at my wedding all dressed in his tux. I really didn't think he would walk down the aisle as my ring bearer because he was NOT happy with me.....I vividly remember him standing between our two flower girls at the beginning of the runner waiting to walk down the aisle and I blew him a kiss....he made a face and stuck his tongue out at me. I remember him being excited to learn that he was going to be an uncle and that when he came to visit me in the hospital he brought me a giant Mickey Mouse doll for the baby. He and my oldest son have grown up like brothers. Fighting at times, getting along well at others. I have enjoyed watching my brother grow into a wonderful young man.

During high school he played football for a year. Then he realized that he couldn't do both football and marching band. He chose band and has excelled. He was the president of the French club this past year. Has been on the Academic Team for 2 years. Was a Natural Student Helper which entailed him showing incoming underclassmen around the building. He was a member of the Key Club and went and hid Easter Eggs for little kids this past spring. He played in the pit this past spring for the high school musical.

He was accepted early on his senior year to a state university. I thought that was very punctual of him!!! He later learned that he missed National Honor Society by a very small fraction of a point; the difference between a B+ and an A- really. Which meant he would not be receiving the Presidential Scholarship. BUT, later he found out that because he was in the 10% of his graduating class he could go to our local Jr. College for 2 years FREE!!! He now had to decide which to do....continue with his plans to the state university or stay home two years. I have to be honest, I was cheering for him to go away. I never had that experience and didn't want him to miss out. But, he made the very mature, responsible decision to stay home and go for free and work. Just yesterday he found out that he received a $1500 scholarship .....but won't be able to accept it because it's only for those going to a 4-year school. "Oh well," he said, "It's just nice to know that I got it."

My brother from California will be flying in. My brother and pregnant sister-in-law from Wisconsin are driving down. We are only all 4 together about twice a year and I ALWAYS look forward to seeing everyone and having us all together. We are laid back dorks who truly enjoy one another's company.

So, Congrats little brother!!!!!! I've enjoyed watching grow up. I love you!!!!! You've made us all proud!!!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

WHAT day is it???

WOWZIE!!!! For not having any "activities" during the day to shuttle kiddos to and's ALREADY Thursday!!!! Where has the week gone?? Where will our break go once there are things to do during the day???? I need to remind myself that Monday WAS a holiday. So, I was off to a fast week to begin with.

I've been working on getting the kids involved with chores this week. M has been GREAT! Very helpful, very compliant. He's even been great watching S so that I can do what I need to do. L on the other hand has been whining and complaining up a storm. THIS from the one who will vacuum, clean the bathroom floor and dust....on HIS terms....not Mom's apparently. I did tell myself to be patient because I can't just assign a chore for the first time and expect them to know how to do it. I had to teach them. With the difficulties that BuhBuh gave me and the slower pace of the cleaning routine we did manage to get the house mostly "blessed" (bathroom scrubbed top to bottom, dust, laundry sorted and started, floors vacuumed and cleaned) In fact even yesterday I felt pretty ahead of the game. Got our bedroom a little more tidied, finally put winter coats and hats and gloves away now that soccer is over. For whatever reason....I feel like now that it is Thursday I have 20 trillzion things to accomplish before 5 p.m. tomorrow night!!! In fact 10 trillzion of those things should probably be done within the next hour. So what do I do instead???

BLOG!!! LOL!!!!

And what a boring post it is at that!!!!!

I have a few post ideas stirring around in my head....but no time now. I have 10 trillzion things to an hour!!!! :)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Winding Down

It's been about forever since I've written ANYTHING! I had been posting things through my MSN account and then just yesterday copied it all over here. I go in such silly on again off again writing phases. Mostly, it's just because I have so many other things I should be doing that I don't allow myself the simple little ME pleasures that I enjoy like reading and writing.

The boys are officially done with school as of last week. HURRAH! I am one of those crazy moms who enjoys having the kids home in the summer. These next three months will go FAST....I just know I'll be putting The Boy on the bus for middle school and BuhBuh on the bus for kindergarten before I can blink.

My Sweetie had Friday off as part of this long holiday weekend also. Friday night it was Date Night/Kid Swap and it was our turn this month for a date. How sad that after dinner we really didn't know what else to do. We tried a couple of things but it never worked out. It was still nice to just have some quiet time together. Saturday we stayed home most of the day with the exception of a quick trip up to Church for a graduation party. During Little Dude's nap I laid out on the deck and finished my book. I love my newly spruced up deck! Then we made homemade pizza and watched a movie with the kids. Sunday was the normal hurry-up-get-to-Church routine. Someday I'll figure out a smoother, less frazzled way to get us all there by 9. I"m glad we live close by!!! :) We came back home and mom and dad came for a visit. Then later in the day our friends came over. It was a nice day.

Today, we also have zero plans!!!! It's nice to just be every now and then.

This coming week we don't have any sort of planned activities besides one Tball Game and Church Wednesday night. I'm hoping to enlist the help of the big boys to get this house a little more ready for a busy summer. I told them I wouldn't make them do any school this coming week. After they help me with chores they have permission to watch as much TV and play as many video games as they'd like. June 1st we are unplugging for a month. This is something we've done before and it's gone over well. We did not do it last year for whatever reason but did do it as a family two summers ago. The kids did GREAT and I expect them to do GREAT again this year too.

Next weekend will be jam packed with my brothers coming home for my brother's graduation. I can't believe he's done with high school. I clearly remember the day he was born.....I remember the cute 4 year old he was when I was in high school and the cute ring bearer he was in my wedding. He's a pretty cool kid and I expect nothing but good things to come for him. I'm looking home to seeing everyone else. It's one of my most favorite times....when we are ALL together!!! We always have so much fun!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

February 29


Hmmmmmm.........I've read TWO devotionals today and they BOTH were about control. Is God trying to tell me something here??? What am I trying to control right now, besides EVERYTHING??? The kids, my husbands faith, my marriage, the home, my day to day life.....something isn't working obviously. Maybe that is why I feel stressed and flustered and aggervated right now. Something needs to be given to God. Maybe all of it??? I need to learn to walk by faith A LOT better. I know this. It's my biggest downfall because I am one who feels the need to be IN CONTROL always and of everything. I'm certain God is trying to tell me something...I don't think it is a "chance" thing that BOTH of the devotions I read, and I actually happened to read both today, are about the same thing.
February 01

Seeing God

When I choose thankfulness over grumbling I will see You Lord.

When I look up I see Chad's handiwork in tearing down and putting back up the ceiling in our dining room with new lighting. I thank God for his hands that work hard and his mind that is full of ideas and concepts and for his body that is strong.

When I look left I see the piles of white snow sitting outside on our deck. It's fluffy and white, undisturbed by footprints or dirt. I thank God for placing me in the midwest where I get to see all kinds of different weather. Sunny and warm, cool and crisp, cold and snowy. I love the colors
and the outdoor adventures that each new season brings.

When I look right I see the closed baby gate and the refrigerator in the kitchen. I thank God for my healthy, curious 9 month old baby boy who we placed the gate for to keep him safe and for the "flair" that colors the outside of my refrigerator. Both remind me that this is a home full of children; full of energy; full of love; full of fun.

When I look down I see Samuel trying to stand (and now has fallen and is crying). I thank God for the gift of having another baby boy in our lives. Although he is just 9 months old it's like I've known and loved him just as long as the other two boys have been in our lives. I can't imagine my life without him (or Matthew and Lucas!) I am so blessed.

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God." Matthew 5:8 (NIV)
February 14

A Quote to Remember

Mike Rayson, an Austrailain missonary here in the United States who has blessed our parish many times with his gifts of song and preaching wrote a letter to the Governor of Tennessee, where he currently lives, in response to comment the Governor made about the recent tornadoes that have killed many in that state. Here is a quote from Mike's blog/letter that really made sense to me.

" the bottom of rock bottom – is rock. And this rock is God – a firm foundation on which to rebuild. God has already journeyed to and through the deepness of our pain."

His way with words is truly a gift and this quote is one we all need to remember.
January 21

It's a God Thing!!

God is surely speaking to me and using me and reassuring me this week. First of all here is the prayer that was at the end of the devotional that I received in my email box today....

Dear Father in Heaven, I know it is no accident that children are all around me. I ask your special blessings on my neighbors, the children of my dear friends, my nieces and nephews and my own precious children. You have equipped me with everything I need to share the gospel with them. Please give me wisdom and discernment as I interact with the children in my life. I want to introduce them to You. I anticipate the day of celebration when one of these children would come to You because of something I said that opened their eyes and heart. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Secondly, last night I was talking to Jonni about the benefit and she asked me if we wanted the one-month family membership to the Y. She had asked the Stuarts and they didn't think they could do that kind of a gift any justice with the crazy life they have right now. I really didn't think we could's kind of hard to walk on the treadmill holding a 9 month old. HA!! SO, I thought of Jenny and Shane. I asked Jenny if she could use it. She said that when Shane was in rehab they went to the Y several times a week and as part of his recovery one of his goals is to take better care of himself and get in shape. What perfect timing for this gift certificate for them!! He's been home a couple weeks now and this will be a good positive outlet and help him work towards his goal and give them something to do together as a family to help with the healing process as well. YEP! It's deffinately a God Thing!!

January 08


I was sitting in Bible Study today trying to both entertain my squirmy little peanut and listen and there the discovery was made....A TOOTH!!!!!!! SAMUEL CUT HIS FIRST TOOTH!!! I'm so very exciting!!! He is almost nine months you know!!!! AND, I really didn't want all the fussiness and fever on Christmas Eve to be for NOTHING!!! So HURRAH!!!! It's so cute!!! I know, you can't see it yet....but you can feel's there!!!! And to think that will most likely be the first tooth that he loses also.

It was somewhat of a productive study, some laundry (SHOOT!!! I still have a load in the washer!) I watched Nikki's boys and took care of some benefit stuff. The letters went out yesterday and I'm already getting responses. YAY! However, I'm ready for bed....I'm leaving the kitchen to be a mess and dealt with later. Hopefully, Samuel will be in his "long stretch" of sleep now so I can get some consecutive hours....that's all I it really so much???

Here's a poem that I got in my devotional today....I love it!!!! It just gives perspective and hope to those days and trials that leave us feeling helpless, sad and lonely.

It's sometimes very difficult
for us to understand
the wisdom and the love behind
the things that God has planned.

But we wouldn't have the rainbow
If we didn't have the rain;
We wouldn't know the pleasure
If we never tasted pain.

We wouldn't love the sunrise
If we hadn't felt the night;
And we wouldn't know our weakness
If we hadn't sensed God's might.

We couldn't have the springtime
or the yellow daffodil
if we hadn't experienced
the winter's frosty chill.

And though the brilliant sunshine
is something God has made.
He knew too much could parch our souls
so He created shade.

So God's given us a balance:
Enough joys to keep us glad,
Enough tears to keep us humble,
Enough good to balance bad.

And if you'll trust in Him you'll see
Though yesterday brought sorrow,
The clouds will part and dawn will bring
A happier tomorrow.

January 05-Accomplished

January 05


I feel so very accomplished these past few days!! I've washed ALL of the blankets and everyone has clean sheets on their beds. I washed and folded 2 loads of towels and I have a load of baby clothes in the drier right now. Yesterday I did a lot of work for Nellie Jo's benefit; taking phone calls, sending emails, getting the flier ready. It took a week but I was able to get through the PILES of reciets and from December and gets bills paid and the book ballanced. (I really shouldn't leave this to be a once a month job. Especially the month of CHRISTMAS!!) Today I changed Lucas's closet. This all of course is in addition to the "normal" things that I "should" do but don't always do but DID (!!!)over the past 2 days....feeding children, doing dishes, bathing them, vaccuming...blah, blah, blah. The thing I'm most proud of is that in addition to making sure that all the kids had showers tonight (it's Saturday....take a shower whether you need it or not!!) BUT, I've got all of their clothes ready to go for morning!!! It would be even more exciting if I knew what I was going to wear and where all the pieces the outfit was, but maybe I'll work for that NEXT Saturday night!

I think it is important to keep a "what I accomplished" list rather than a "to do" list. As a mom it is so hard to ever feel like anything has actually been done. You do the dishes and the kids ask for a do the laundry and they come inside with grass give them baths and they get spill something on themselves; there is always something to be done.

I have informed Chad that I plan on doing nothing tomorrow....well, I suppose I'll still take care of the kids. BUT, I'd like to do some reading for my bible study, read my bible reading for the day (I found an site that guides your reading in a year...I'm such an internet junkie!!) maybe take a bubble bath (in which case I'll have to scrub the tub first) and maybe make a pot of soup. And if I can work a nap in there somewhere, believe me I WILL!! I think the real challenge will be getting Chad to have a day of rest and relaxation too....he's away from the house during the week and on weekends he wants to do projects around the house. Understandable. BUT, we are ALL entitled to a day of rest. (And I think this should include my washer and drier!)He's done some of that today, but also worked a little on the attic.

Well, off to take a shower and plan out tomorrow mornings Sunday School Lesson....and think about the Children's Sermon I'm suppose to do.....UGH! it's 10 pm!!

December 31-Happy New Year

December 31

Happy New Year

2007 is coming to a quick end. WOW! What a difference a year can make in the lives of your children. Our family grew by one this year with the birth of our 3rd son, Samuel David. It has been such a blessing to have the gift of a baby in the house again. Matthew is in his last year of elementary school. He seems to be finding some good friends this year and finding his place amongst his peers; an answered prayer being that this is something I have been worried about in the past. He began playing the drums this year, his primary sport focus in soccer and his grades are average although I KNOW he could do better. Lucas is in his second and last year of PreK. What a funny kid! Sometimes when I laugh at the funny things he has said I wonder if I should actually be worried. He doesn't display quite the compassion that Matthew does, but is very helpful around the house and has a huge imagination. He was able to play soccer for the first time this year and was estatic that daddy was his coach. Chad and I have been riding the pregnancy/newborn roller coaster. He does his thing and I do mine and then we are both so tired (well, me mostly) to have any husband and wife time together other than stare blankly at the TV screen. I miss my husband and although I am loving having a baby around again I don't like the consequence of the effect it seems to have on my marriage.

So, with the New Year upon us of course I had to come up with my GOALS for the New Year. They may seem long, maybe a bit too thought out and organized, but I like things to be focused and specific. So here it is...

“In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” Proverbs 16:9

2008 Theme:

To establish and maintain a balance between the God who created me, the husband who swept me off my feet and the children who have melted my heart.

Priority Statement:

To be the wife my husband deserves and the mother my children need.

I will continue to strengthen my relationship with God

  1. Spend as much, if not more, time WITH God in addition to DOING FOR God
  2. Honor the Sabbath as a family
  3. We will tithe both salary and commission in 2008
  4. Continue with Bible Studies
  5. Find some solitude once a day for self study and journaling
  6. Make Saturday Morning accountability group a priority

I will make family, friends and taking care of myself a priority


1. Once a month dates with Chad

2. Overnight get away with Chad

3. Welcome him home every night in the driveway with a hug and kiss

4. Do something to surprise/bless him every week


1. Continue to reinforce the importance of God and faith (bible reading, scripture memorization, WR4K, Sunday School, camp, mission projects)

2. Teach more responsibility. Get kids more involved with household chores.

3. Demand respect be given to everyone

4. Enforce “no screen” days and hours in the home

5. Don’t over schedule the kids. No more than one activity at a time (in addition to church and school) during the school year. No more than two activities at a time (in addition to church) in the summer

6. Come up with some team building projects for Matthew and Lucas to do together


1. Send cards for birthday’s, anniversaries, thank you’s and thinking of you’s

2. Accomplish Samuel’s 1st year scrapbook

3. Accomplish Matthew’s K-3rd scrapbook pages

4. Have once a month weekend meal with different friends/family

5. Have lunch/dinner with Kathy once a month

6. Re-establish more regular playgroup meetings

7. Have a girls only overnight somewhere


1. Make time for a daily time of solitude (see above)

2. Observe 31st Day as a day to re-evaluate family plan and have a ME day

I will set up an effective plan to manage my home and focus my mission


1. Reorganize and set up desk as an effective place to manage home and mission projects

2. Schedule NOTHING during the day on Mondays. (exception: special functions for the kids at school)

3. Choose one other day of the week (according to schedule) to be an “At Home” work day and one day as an “Errand day” as needed.

4. Break home into weekly zones and accomplish 1-2 projects in that zone each week. (Week One: Kids Rooms; Week Two: Kitchen; Week Three: Bedroom; Week Four: Living/Dining/Bathroom; Week Five: Area of most need)

5. Menu plan and make shopping lists accordingly and keep a running list of other home items needed to cut down on extra trips to store and frivolous item.

6. Use salary pay checks for bills. Commission pay checks are for savings and special projects only…not to supplement the month due to overspending.

7. Adopt a new “Green” habit every month


To teach children/youth about God’s love for them and the awesome gift He gave us in His son Jesus Christ.

To live my life as an example and response to God’s grace

To reach out to those in greater need than myself

1. To prioritize my commitments to the Church that reflect my mission for 2008 while honoring my commitments to my family I can plan and plan and hope and hope for anything my little heart desires I suppose. But, like the Proverb stated above, it's the Lord who will determine my steps. So, as long as I stay flexible and keep my ears and eyes open to what GOD wants, I'm sure that this New Year will be full of blessings. I'm looking foward to watching my kids grow, learn and enjoy life from their individual perspectives this next year.