did they really ruin my dryer? not quite. but they sure do turn gooey! i have 3 boys and one girl, and they all love dirt, digging and bugs. this blog is just a small glimpse into my life as a mom, wife and whatever else God puts before me.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Far, But Near

so i haven’t posted to this blog in a very long while.  but it has come to my attention, albeit in a sarcastic and quite unexpected email, that my (lack of) communication leaves some wanting.  in short, i haven’t done a very good job of balancing my home life with that of my extended family.  so, i am going to try to remedy that.  somehow.  not sure if this will work or not.  as i am just as busy as i ever was with being a wife, mom, RN, homeschooler, homemaker, and all the other tasks that are on my plate. 

but i am going to try. 


please don’t hold me to a lofty expectation.  like posting every day (or week). or calling on the phone regularly.  or writing thank you notes on time (or even at all).  because i am just not good at that kind of thing.  i never have been.  getting married and having 4 children did not change that in me.  if anything, i am worse at it now than i ever have been.

please, don’t think that my lack of communication means i love you any less.  i have my regrets.  i know i didn’t do right by my uncle before he died.  i know i didn’t do enough with my grandmother before she died.  i know i could be calling more, or sacrificing more, or visiting more.

please, don’t let the burden be only on me. you are just as responsible for keeping in touch as i am.  and to be sure, if you found me lacking, maybe you should take the plank out of your own eye before pointing out mine. eh?

so. here goes.

and let me tell you.  i will not hide my faith any longer from you.  i will no longer shrink in fear that you won’t approve of my parenting skills, or my abilities as a wife.  my finances aren’t your business.  my church home isn’t your business.  if i choose to spend my free time with my husband instead of indulging in “me” time, that is my business also.  i am tired of trying to gloss over who i am just so you will accept me.  doesn’t work anyway.  i cannot pretend any longer that i am the daughter/sister you dream of.  sorry i disappoint so. 

whew.  now that is out of the way, let’s get on with filling you in on the details of our lives.  if you are brave enough.

Monday, April 15, 2013

a little (shaming) goes a long way


my second son turned 8 a few weeks ago.  his grandpa is very generous and always sends him some cash to spend as he likes.  yesterday was our shopping trip. 

he had been talking since his birthday party that he wanted to buy his guests presents as thank yous.  i kept telling him that the treat bags mom worked so hard on (and spent some dough on, too) were ample thanks, as well as thank you cards.  well, he was not to be swayed.  i am ashamed to admit that we got into a tearful argument (on both sides) about the spending of his birthday money.  i wanted him to spend his money on himself since he rarely gets to do that, and he wanted to buy a bunch of stuff for others. 

the Holy Spirit spoke volumes to me on our drive to the W.  it is his money, after all, and who the heck am i to squelch his generous heart???  after we arrived in the parking lot, i turned and spoke gently to him, humbly apologizing for my own behavior and asking his forgiveness.  we headed into the store with uplifted hearts and beelined to the toy department.

he picked out some nice gifts for his friends, then went to work looking for himself.  we spent at least 30 minutes in the LEGO aisle.  at the end of the aisle was a Hero Factory kit that had a clearance tag on it "$16.50".”  He thought that was a pretty good deal and asked how much he had left.  we counted it up, and to his dismay, he was too short to get anything for his 3 siblings.  we talked, me on one knee, and him with tears, about what we could do.  i gently suggested that we find out when his friends’ birthdays were, and save up some allowance to buy them gifts on their special days.  his eyes lit up, and we put the items back, then looked for his sibs presents. 

we then did the rest of our shopping and headed to the check-out...

that took a while.  it is the big W, ya know.

i had put my groceries up first, and at the last minute, decided to use the bar to separate out my stuff from his. 

i am so glad i did, because otherwise i would have missed God blessing my son!

we get to his stuff, and by my estimation, he is going to get about $2 in change. 

he got a crisp $10 bill. 


we looked at the receipt a little closer when we got past the register, and to my surprise, his LEGO toy rang up as $7.  Less than half the price tag.  Clearance item?  who knows... nothing indicated sale on the receipt.

so you ready for a little more shaming of his mama??

we get in the car, talking about how cool it was that his total was less than we expected.  his first thought on this truth sinking in??

“Now I have enough to buy a game for T and C!!! (his friends from the party).”

my son, who has such an issue with anger and what to do with it, didn’t think of himself.  he thought of his friends.  i broke into tears and explained to him how God had blessed him with a generous spirit just like his daddy.  (his mama lacks one)

i love how God takes moments like this one and shows me a glimmer of what is to come in my children’s lives.  this child, this fists balled up in anger, screaming at the top of his lungs that no one loves him, punching walls child, has a generous heart that surpasses any of my expectations. 

i thank God for not letting me miss the moment. 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

advent... fail


just a note:

this is not a reflection on the quality of “truth in the tinsel.” amanda did an amazing job creating an advent calendar that reflects beautifully on the events of Jesus’ birth. we will definitely do this again! the daily readings were well thought out and the daily craft solidified the story and provided extra hours of role play for my kiddos to reenact the events. i HIGHLY recommend it!!

in 2011 i purchased  Truth in the Tinsel.  it was all over the blogosphere and i thought it would be awesome to do with the kids.  i never got my act together with supplies or anything, and i was working full time nights, so it never made it off the computer.

this year was gonna be different! i was prepared!

in early November, i sent the file to my hubby to print (he has a laser printer... way faster than mine)

i made a list immediately of the things we didn’t have in our craft closet.  i even read through the material to see what the ornaments looked like and what we could substitute.

went to walmart to get all the extra supplies (we weren’t missing too many). 

we cut out the countdown squares and put them on the wall in one of our pocket charts.

the children were excited to do this.

we started strong.  i had 1.5 weeks off at the beginning of the month (weird scheduling thing) and we were off and running!  even the moose participated!

2012-12-09 18.33.14

then, disaster.  i had to work.  i forgot to get the craft ready for daddy.  have no fear, he improvised!!  he used paper plates for zecheriah and sent me pics while i was at work.  awesome job!!

then, the busyness of the season took over, the kids stopped asking about the craft, and around day 12 we stopped altogether. 


i had such high hopes for our advent season. 

another mommy fail...

there is always next year, right? 

the big pink elephant


it is the day after christmas.

i survived the day with my family.  but it wasn’t easy.

we started off the day at about 0930.  the roads were slick with snow covered ice.  about 15 minutes into the drive we discovered that our windshield wipers weren’t working properly.  we had no wiper fluid coming out at all.  this has happened to us once before, and it turned out the fuse had blown.  same issue now.  so, everytime a car passed us, it kicked up dirt and snow, and it left a brown film on the windshield we could not get off.  so we had to pull over every now and again to clean it off by hand with an increasingly grimy towel. 

we got to my parents after a few slip and slides.  they live about 80 miles from us, 10 or so of it is dirt road, a few hairpin turns, big trucks driving overconfidently.  we pulled into their drive and i breathed a sigh of relief.  my sister’s car wasn’t in sight, so i knew she wasn’t there yet.  i could relax.  the knots in my stomach had been wreaking havoc the whole drive.

i had to use the bathroom pretty badly (shame on me for drinking my 2 cups of coffee)  so i ran into the house right after we pulled in.  there on the couch is my sister, greeting me with a “Merry Christmas” and a big smile.

wha??? i thought she was done with me.   i ran into the bathroom and sat down, very puzzled.  i was taken quite off guard and didn’t know how to respond. 

when i got back out to the living room, my KISA and kids were in, and everyone was greeting everyone.  small talk... how were the roads? how did the kids do for the drive?  how much snow did you get? blah, blah, blah.

the rest of the day was so uneventful.  she said very little to me, and i said next to nothing to her.  i distributed presents to my mom, dad, and sister.  i received a present from my mom and dad.  the kids all opened their gifts, then fell to playing with them.  the plan was to eat dinner around 2 pm, so we could be on the road shortly after 3.  my oldest sat at the adult table in the dining room and i sat at the little’s table in the kitchen.  he was thrilled to be with the grown ups and nobody even seemed to notice that i wasn’t there. 

the most awkward moment was the good-bye.  my husband distributed hugs all around, as did the kiddos.  i hugged my mom and dad, but could not bring myself to hug my sister.  i did manage to raise up my eyes to hers and say, “thank you for dinner.”  i knew she had done just about all of it without help.  if my family of 6 hadn’t been there they probably would not have gone all out. 

the drive home was quiet.  all the kids crashed and i was able to reflect on the day.

*i wasn’t able to finish this blog post when i started it.  it is now jan 3rd.  i still haven’t heard from my sister.  i don’t know if i will at all.  i am still under the impression that she won’t accept and calls or emails.  we did send a thank you letter to her and my parents.  i am no longer losing sleep over it, and it is not my every waking thought.  i am just trusting the Holy Spirit to give me the words i need when the situation arises.  i just have to remember that she doesn’t have the grace of Jesus in her heart. and that maybe it is my time to show her.