Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas time is HERE!

Although I am not feeling in the Christmas mood the way I usually am this time of year I am trying. I want to feel the usual overwhelming cheer that sometimes makes me tear up (cheesy, I know) but it's true. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this time of year. I want it to last twice as long as it does and am always let down the day after Christmas and especially after New Year's when all the holidays are done for another year and it's back to business as usual. I am missing it this year... I am not entirely sure why. Derek was laid off this time last year and it didn't matter then... *sigh* who knows. Anyway, I stuck with tradition and put up the tree the night after Thanksgiving. The stockings went up... minus Clara's that we still have to get. The wreath is on the front door and we even added a snowman garland this year! (gotta love a $1.50 craft from JoAnn's :))

It's all here... I'm just not. But my kids will never know because we are still drinking hot cocoa, dancing to Christmas songs, planning on our annual cookie decorating and making Christmas crafts. Where are you Christmas cheer... please come and visit me... soon!

So here is what Christmas at our house looks like:




Monday, November 29, 2010

28 on the 28th

That's right ladies and gentleman... I am officially 28! I honestly don't know how I feel about it. On one hand it is just a number, but on the other that number is getting bigger and bigger. :) I just feel like my twenties are flying by. I know that is in big part due to having little kids... time flies and crawls simultaneously. I feel like I just turned 20 though.... weird. Well it was pretty low-key this year due to all that's going on. But friends of ours took us out to lunch and I got a few small presents. Derek and the girls got me the new Colbie Calliat CD and I love it. I got a great cold cup from Starbucks from a friend and a Women of Faith book from my mom. Derek cooked me dinner and we even had cheesecake!!!


It was the no-bake kind (a.k.a. the kind we can afford) but it was delicious!!!! We even put candles on it and the girls and Derek sang me Happy Birthday. It was a good day.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving

Well it's here again. A time to be thankful... While I have been trying all month to focus on this holiday, which is my absolute favorite, and be thankful for what we do have I am noticing that I am not in my normal holiday cheer this year. Facing a second holiday season with Derek not working, well, it blows... big time. I am very thankful for my husband who works hard (when there is work) and for my three beautiful, healthy girls. I am thankful that I am healthy. I am thankful that (with the exception of needing tires on the Kia) we have two cars in good working condition. BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH.....

I am just not feeling it this year. God is providing for us and I am constantly amazed at that miracle but I am still bummed. I hate that we have to go through this a second year in a row. I hate that we have to watch every tiny penny so much more than we've ever had to. I hate the panic I feel every time we buy anything because there is so little money to go around right now. *sigh*

And, I hate that I feel like I shouldn't be feeling any of this because if I trusted God enough there would be no stress/worry/panic about this. Well there is. I know that this time of year isn't just about giving but I like giving. I want to give... and I can't... again...

This too shall pass....

So for Thanksgiving, that is what this post was supposed to be about :), we went to my mom and step-dad's house. We did it on Friday thanks to the snowstorm that made the roads a little dangerous for a few days. We had a delicious dinner (the girls "helped" Papa)


and had a good time just being together. The guys watched football, Audrey and Brianna colored placemats for the table,



and I crocheted (only two weeks until the bazaar). I made the pies and they turned out quite well :)

Lemon Meringue Pie

My first homemade pumpkin pie

I am thankful... I am thankful... I am thankful

Friday, November 26, 2010

Snow storm - November 2010

I am NOT a big fan of snow but don't usually mind it too much if we are all safe and warm and together when it happens. And with Derek not working we don't have to worry about him missing work. So when snow was threatening our area I figured we would just hunker down and "weather the storm" (pun intended). Well on Sunday evening, it started to snow. By Monday it was REALLY snowing and a storm was rolling in. The girls were excited for the first snow of the season and were anxious to go for a "snow walk" with Daddy.


I started to get worried only because our area is prone to power outages anyway and I knew that if we lost power it was going to get cold... quick. In times B.C. (before children) I would have thought that a major inconvenience. But now, A.C., it is just dangerous. It's not like I can keep my two year old and my four year old in their beds all day to keep warm.

So finally Monday night at about 6:15, the power finally went out for good. We dealt with it and went to bed praying that we would have power by morning. Around 3:30 am we got power back for about 2 minutes... just enough to tease. By morning our house was quite frigid. Thankfully our neighbors are friends and had a generator that they were able to use to have a space heater in their house. It wasn't tropical but it was a lot warmer than our house. They have three kids (2 of them girls) and so our girls had plenty to do. When it became apparent that the power wasn't going to come back on before dark, at 4:30 p.m., we decided to head to our church to spend the night. They almost always have power because they are on the same power grid as the local urgent care center. We packed up our car and headed that way. After a scary (at least for me) drive the seven miles to church we were there, safe and warm (YAY). Of course the kids thought it was a big adventure. They had friends, they had toys and LOTS of room to run around. Plus they got to sleep in sleeping bags.... does it get any better? After a nice hot dinner we all watched Toy Story 3.

Watching Toy Story 3

Then off to bed. Praying, once again, that our power would be back on in the morning because it was going to definitely be time to shower by then. :)

Wednesday morning came and we discovered that our power came back on around 8:00 am. We headed home. The drive was a little better but still a little slippery in places. We got home safe and sound and it took the entire rest of the day for the house to warm back up. But I don't think I ever appreciated a hot shower as much as I did that day. Thanksgiving morning we woke up to a white winter land still and the kids went out and played for a while but by late afternoon it was all gone (YAY YAY YAY!) ... so that means we are off to my mom and kenny's today for a delayed Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sanctuary

Stress is in abundance at our house... Derek is unemployed, again.... the holidays are here and Derek is unemployed, again... my birthday is in less than two weeks and Derek is unemployed, again... this time is worse though because we are getting a lot less unemployment than last time and we are waiting... waiting on God... waiting on a miracle ... waiting...

My life feels like those three dots ... ... ... an ellipsis... waiting.

While we wait I try and find sanctuary. I read the Bible and am comforted by it's words. Then the phone rings and it's someone who wants money and my sense of peace is gone and my ellipsis is back ... ... ... ...

So I seek more sanctuary. Having a clean and organized house makes me feel calm and accomplished... so I clean. I make a list and enthusiastically cross off each item that I complete. Then we need something and I have to look at our bank account to see if we can afford to go buy more batteries for the baby's swing.

Sanctuary gone...

ellipsis back...

waiting...

I remember that we are in a time of Thanksgiving and decide to count all the things we are thankful for: house (hoping inside we don't lose it), cars that are in good running order at the moment (even though the Kia needs tires we can't afford and we could potentially lose those too), church family (who I feel guilty for all the help we have received from them in the last year) and my ellipsis is back...
...
...
...

then I think of my children. I think of how frustrated I can get with them when they do NOT stop fighting. I think of how irritated I get when I hear nothing but whining and demands. I think of how short my patience seems lately and I feel guilty. These three children are treasures and I am more grateful for them than I let them know. I think of all the regrets I have about the times I have lost it with them and said things I didn't mean or yelled when I shouldn't have. Then I feel like a failure and all sense of sanctuary is gone...
...
...

Then one of them smiles at me


or says, "I love you, mommy" or is kind to another one without being asked...

or accomplishes something they didn't think they could do and you see the look of triumph on their faces...


That's when it doesn't matter anymore. That's when I can look at Derek and smile and genuinely mean it. That's when we can forget, even if only for a moment, about all that is going on in our lives that isn't easy.

Sanctuary

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Two months

Clara is already two months old. I cannot believe it. I feel like time is slipping so fast and yet so slow all at the same time. With her being my baby, I don't want it to go so fast but yet, time speeds up. Why is it that times flies when something you don't want to happen is coming and yet can go SO slow when you are waiting for something you want to happen. And the kicker is that it can be both fast and slow simultaneously... sigh. Well, Clara is a healthy and happy two month old. She is 12 pounds (93%) and 23.5" long (96%). She is hitting all her developmental milestones perfectly. She is a sweet baby. She loves to smile at her sisters and most others as well. She sleeps like an angel at night and most of the time during the day. I cannot complain about hardly anything where she is concerned. I am very blessed to have an awesome baby :)