Peeking In

I tend to be quiet here when I am going through something{s}. Really, I have a lot to say but need to say it in real life before I can go blabbing about it on my blog. Plus, I am sick.  After a night in the ER with two bags of fluids, a really strong pain killer and a nurse that seemed to enjoy digging around to start an IV, I am feeling {slightly} better.  The doctor told me today, at a follow-up appointment, that my sample {I will leave what they sampled to your imagination} is growing a pathogen and that Monday he will have results to let me know what antibiotic I need to start.  Basically, I have bad bacteria in my gut? Who knew. So, in an attempt to keep you updated on my oh-so-glamorous life {ha!} here are some pics from my phone this week: Sitting at the DMV on a Saturday was … [Read more...]

33 Things I’ve Learned about Life

Today is my birthday {it is Elvis' birthday too, in case you care}. I have had a wonderful day full of love, laughs and family.   Feeling retrospective I decided to chronicle thirty three things I have learned about life {not in any particular order} Polka dots and hot pink make me smile. There are few sounds that bring as much joy as a baby belly laughing. Marriage is hard work, but oh so worth it. There is a huge difference between a job, a career and a calling. When people say "enjoy these moments because they grow up so fast" they are not exaggerating one bit.  Kids literally grow up in the blink of an eye. Having a near death experience will remove most fear from your life and replace it with a sense of urgency to live EVERY minute fully. Chocolate makes everything most … [Read more...]

Using Pinterest to get organized for Christmas

alternately titled My New Addiction to Pinterest. The Type A organizer in me has a holiday binder where I would clip ideas and recipes and tradition ideas that I have come across over the years.  It has been my planner for memorable holidays over the years. Now, I have a Holiday Inspirations board on Pinterest. And, the need for clipping, keeping and flipping through pages has expired.  I am like at kid at Christmas {yes, pun intended} I will still make note of the wrapping supplies I have leftover from the previous year so I can shop sales but don't need my binder anymore.  And, I am excited about that! How do you get organized for the holiday season? … [Read more...]

TTT- Hope Chest

When Miss S. came into our home, I immediately got her a hope chest.  Already 18, she {and I} had some catching up to do with this tradition. She had no idea what I was talking about and acted like she thought it was a silly idea. Until she saw the types of things I was putting in there.  Now, she will point things out when we are out and about and comment how nice an item would be for her hope chest {that girl makes me laugh all the time} My grandmother had a hope chest for me.  It meant the world to me, a child that did not have many ties to tradition, to have this box of meaningful items given to me when Mike and I married. For those of you that aren't familiar with the hope chest concept, it is a box {we use a trunk in our family} that is used to collect household items, recipe … [Read more...]

Helicopter Parenting or Parenting Parenting?

My kids often accuse suggest to me that I am overly strict and involved in their lives. While I would probably have to plead "no contest" to such a charge in court, I think, I hope and I pray that I am doing this whole mama thing right.  But am I? For example: an eleven year old girl in our neighborhood is aggressively pursuing my thirteen year old son (about to be fourteen in a month).  Her facebook photo is of her in a bikini (for crying out loud).  I have intervened by informing her that her facebook messages to him are inappropriate (because I monitor all his facebook messages).  I have intervened by bringing my son inside when she is riding her bike past our house obsessively while he is playing basketball (in our driveway).  That (so far) has been the extent of my "psychopathic … [Read more...]

He’s My Son

Chubby little fingers find their way into my hand. His (almost) three year old little self pulls me energetically towards the kittens down the hall... "Tome on mommy, let's go look at the kitties" (except he said his hard c's and k's like t's so you can imagine how comical that was).  The fact that he is calling me mommy just a few days after we met is not lost on me and I feel the weight of what that could mean with each step down the hall. He's my son. (Almost) three years later we sit in the back of the car together.  He again slides his hand into mine as we drive away from his old life and toward a new life in our home.  He is stoic, already jaded by his experiences and the disappointments life can present.  He doesn't cry. He doesn't ask why.  He just holds my hand and doesn't look … [Read more...]

Teen/Tween Thursday- Family Time

This week I would like to expand on a post I wrote earlier in the week.  When parenting teens/tweens quality family time can be difficult.  Our kids don't necessarily want to spend time with us. Let's face it: we are not cool (at least to our kids ;)) This week I recognized the importance of focusing on my sons interests in order to engage his attention. So, how can we make sure that we are available to our kids?  What are some things that we can do with them to maintain a bond?  Here are some of my ideas and I would love to hear yours as well! Eat dinner together. This is so important!  Many studies have touted the value of eating as a family. It is a great time for discussion, questions and family time.  I am always amused listening to the things that my … [Read more...]

Teens and Respect

Thank you all so much for the discussion that we had on last week's topic. This week I wanted to focus on respect.  Sunday I picked up the latest issue of Home Life magazine at church (shameless self promotion, I am quoted on page 54).  I also picked up the February issue and it had a very convicting article about the spiritual impact of your child's disrespect. This article stepped all over my mama toes so I wanted to take a few minutes to discuss the meat of it today. Here is the line that really stuck with me: If you aren't teaching your children to respect you, how can you expect them to respect other authority figures, and most importantly, a holy God? I have to admit that my children were much more respectful of me (in tone, words and actions) when they were … [Read more...]

Suffer the little children…

As most of you know I have a passion for parentless children.  Whether that be orphans in Haiti or foster children here in the United States, I believe in the promise of Psalm 68:6 where the Bible says: God sets the lonely in families... I love that verse.  If you want to be further inspired about this important topic, my friend Kim is guest posting on @RealLifeSarah's blog.  You can read her touching story here. Then read below to see how you can get more information about an organization that finds forever families for children that need them. Last year AdoptUsKids hosted two adoption chats on Twitter.  As a result, some Twitter users actually made the decision to move forward with the adoption process. If you missed our earlier events, please join us for a live Twitter party later … [Read more...]

Understanding Tweens…is it possible?

Image by hyperboreal via Flickr I am an all or nothing kind of gal. The upside:  I am fiercely loyal, totally committed and extremely stubborn determined. The downside: I am extremely determined stubborn, a tad perfectionistic and  a smidge moody I was on the downside of my personality lately.  Parenting 12 and 13 year olds every day and a 16 year old from afar has pushed me to (what I thought was) my limit. I felt like a FAILURE with a capital F. That doesn't feel good.  The recovering Type A that I am does not take nicely to the F word. I finally took these feelings to God (why do I too often make that my last stop?) and he expanded my perspective. So now, instead of feeling responsible for my child's bad choices, I'm going to allow natural consequences to occur and let the child … [Read more...]

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