Thursday, October 28, 2010

Miscellaneous Musing

  • A Little Worried-  My girls are both home sick from school today which means I was able to sleep in with no alarm clock and will not have to be the chauffeur to and from school today and won't be sitting at gymnastics for two hours tonight.  Uh oh!  That sounds a tad like a day off.  Yikes!  I don't want another one of THOSE!    Trust me!  I have absolutely no expectations for today.  Did you hear that, Murphy?  No expectations!  So you just keep your law to yourself today, OK? 

  • On the Novel Front-  I've been plagued with writer's block.  I was telling my Writer Buddy yesterday that I've written a whole four paragraphs in the last two weeks.  Not exactly stellar progress, but I'm encouraged because writing those four paragraphs was fun and not frustrating like it has been.  Maybe I'm breaking through the block?  I hope so. 

  • Time to Climb That Mountain Again:  Oh joy.  It's time to lose weight again.  Here's me sticking out my tongue-  : p 

  • W.O.W. : We are going to have a very full house for Thanksgiving this year.  I'm so excited about it.  My aunt and uncle and cousin are coming to visit for the first time since we've been married.  My mom and dad and grandma, my brother and sister-in-law and their four kids, and great friends who really are family will all be joining us.   I've got a long "to-do" list but its a labor of love because I want it to be special for everyone.  The front porch project went well, but once I walk IN the house I'm bombarded with all I see that I'd like to make better before everyone arrives.  It is definitely time for another Within One Week challenge.  I'll post more details soon, but I wanted to make sure you got it on your calendar so you'll join me.  It will be Nov. 8 - 15.  

I suppose that's enough rambling for now.  : )

Have a very happy Thursday everyone!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

My Latest Project- Before and After Photos

We are hosting Thanksgiving again this year, and I've been looking around our home lately and seeing all of the poor neglected spaces I'd love to spruce up before our company arrives. 

One of the first places calling to me was our poor, sad, neglected, cobwebby, front porch. 
And the entryway was just as uninviting. 

Making Bets on Who will fall through first -    


I love to sit out with my friends and drink coffee while we watch the kids play, but lately I've begun to wonder which one of us will be the first to fall through the chairs.  Classy, huh?  : ) 

So armed with coupons, I ventured into the sacred grounds of  Hobby Lobby. 

Here are my after photos: 

So I might need an intervention. 
I'm a little addicted to creating chalkboards
Here's my latest: 

From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another. - John 1:16

 I hope the new look will say to friends and family -

Come on in! 

Sitting area all ready for relaxing and coffee sipping:

Shannon from Bless Our Nest inspired this project:

There was so much more I wanted to do, but alas, I ran out of money.  I was able to do all of this on a small budget, though, and I'll tell you more about how I made the changes in my next post. 

Hint:  I had a willing and talented labor force: 

Thank you, Mom!!! 

Happy Fall Everyone! 


Friday, October 15, 2010

A Day to Remember

One in four pregnancies end in loss. 

That statistic has always taken my breath away.  It is a staggering number isn't it?  It reminds us of how BIG pregnancy loss is, and how common it is, but the numbers also miss the smaller picture.  The smaller picture of each individual woman, each family, each baby, each broken heart. 

Today is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, and I'm thankful for a day to remember and a day to celebrate the individual lives of my four babies.  It may seem strange to use the word celebrate for something so sad, but over the years of healing, I'm able to see the beautiful ways God has used their sweet, short lives to bless and impact other people, and to shape and change their Mama for good. 

Thank you, Lord, for David, Micah, James, and Sarah.  Thank you for who they are!  Thank you for the beautiful mark they have left on my heart and the ways you are using our story to point other people to this truth:

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.  - Psalm 147:3

Today is a perfect opportunity for you to find one of those individual women and let them now you are remembering with them.  One of the secret fears inside their hurting heart is that they are the only one who remembers. 

Also, one of my very favorite bloggers- Shannon from Bless Our Nest is hosting a giveaway of my book on her blog today in memory of her niece, Reece.  You will love her blog!  If you are here from Shannon's blog today, welcome!  I was so hoping my new website would be finished so I could have a better welcome for you all, but it is still in the design stages so I hope you'll still make your selves at home here on my blog.  You can also find me on Twitter here and the book on Facebook here

Thank you to everyone for helping me remember today.  I have great treasure waiting for me in Heaven, and I'm so grateful to be the mother of all of my babies.   


Friday, October 8, 2010

Adventures of Super Mom: A Day Off or Just An Off Day?

Wednesday night, I snuggled up to my husband in bed and said, "I'm excited because tomorrow I get a day off.  There's no school so I don't have to set the alarm, and I don't have to be Mama Taxi Driver.  It's going to be a great day!"
As I fell asleep, I fantasized about a day of reconnecting with my kids.  The girls had been so busy lately, maybe we would go for a bike ride.  Maybe we'd play board games or snuggle on the couch for a long cozy chat. 

Then I had the bright idea of starting potty training.  Prince Charming has shown interest, and has had some successful bathroom visits over the past few months, with a four day weekend ahead and no where to go, wouldn't this be the perfect time to give potty training a shot?

I sighed contentedly and fell asleep with great expectations for the next day.  

Ha!  Isn't it funny how a day can unfold so differently from what we expected it to be?   

Here's what really happened:

1.  Because of a late school event the night before, we woke up to all of the dinner dishes waiting for us: stuck on, greasy meatloaf crusted plates and pans = grumpy start.

2.  Potty Training-  I'll spare you all the gory details, but after several tantrums, an extra large bottle of bubbles dumped on the bathroom floor, and an absolute REFUSAL to point his "thing" down so he wouldn't pee on Mommy's face, Prince Charming made it VERY CLEAR that he was NOT ready for this new skill.  I tendered my potty training resignation after only two hours of trying.  : )

3.  By this time in the morning, a large crowd of neighborhood kids invaded the house stopped by to visit.  Gone were my dreams of quiet, cozy fireside chats in the living room with my kids. 

4.  Then Littlest Princess found me to tell me the upstairs toilet was clogged.  While she came looking for me, Oldest Princess went in and flushed some more trying to "fix" the problem.   By the time I made it up the stairs, a crowd of children had gathered to see the fascinating toilet fountain that had flooded the bathroom floor and was seeping in to the hallway carpet. 

I sweetly asked them all to exit my home while I figured out how to stop the fountain and clean up the flood.  (Confession- maybe not so sweetly at all.  Maybe I'm a little afraid of the stories they told their parents that night of my teeny tirade) 

5.  I'm still trying to block out the memory of the screaming match with my children outside in the front yard for all the neighbors to see and hear while I convinced my oldest two that it was their duty to watch their little brother while I rescued our home. 

And then it happened.  

I walked back in the house, into the laundry room, and reached up to the top shelf and accidentally knocked this container of Oxy Clean down on my head.  : ) 

It was at the moment, standing in the laundry room, covered in white powder, watching water leak from upstairs, that I finally just laughed.

I couldn't help but see the "I Love Lucy" comedic aspect to what was happening and there really wasn't anything else left to do but laugh at myself.    

And It Was Only Noon!

Being Super Mom is just harder work than you think. For some reason, though, I don't think I'm ready to ask for another day off any time soon.

Here's to us all having a weekend with low expectations!  LOL!

Happy Friday!


Monday, October 4, 2010

Remembered and Loved by Their Big Sister

Each month, Littlest Princess's class hosts an Author Share where they practice public speaking in front of their invited family members.   They use a microphone and share the writing projects they worked on for that month.  

Friday was the first one, and I was proud of my little author.  I agree with another mom who said it will be fun to see how the kids develop as speakers and writers this year.  But the most touching moment for me was after the program when Littlest Princess walked me out to the hallway to see the Family Crest she made.

She pointed out that she chose to highlight the countries of Norway and the UK as two places our ancestors immigrated from.  She showed me the gold coin that represented her riches of love and friends, and her pictures of the relatives that came from Norway.  

Then I asked her about this picture and said, "Who are these people?"   

She answered, "That's our family!"  She pointed out each of us and finished with, "And these babies are David, Micah, James, and Sarah in Heaven."  

My heart tightened, and I was overcome with a strange bittersweet feeling, a mixture of sadness and joy.  She never forgets.  When she prays at night she always thanks Jesus for her WHOLE family. 

She'll tell perfect strangers that she has two brothers and two sisters in Heaven.  One time at Fantastic Sam's, the girl cutting her bangs told her her name was Sarah, and LP said, "I have a baby sister named Sarah who lives in Heaven." 

I've tried to talk to her about how inappropriate it is to tell people this and how uncomfortable and sad it makes them feel, but she doesn't understand.  In her mind, this is her family.  She has a firm grasp on Eternity and looks forward to knowing her sisters and brothers someday.  She thanks God for them.  So, I 've given up trying to stop her.  In fact, I'm thankful I haven't been able to stop her. 

October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month and October 15th is set aside for a special Remembrance Day.  I'm thankful that I am not alone in remembering my precious babies.  So many remember them and love them, especially their big sister. 


Friday, October 1, 2010


It was already 4:00, and I just knew I was going to be late picking up my girls from choir practice at school. 

I hastily buckled in Prince Charming, jumped in the driver's seat, and threw the car into reverse. 

And then...


Instantly, I knew I had done something really, really stupid.  Something you can't just say, "oops" and then forget about.  

You know, it's always wise to wait for the garage door to finish opening before you try to exit the garage. 

As I inspected the damage, the door was off the track, looked slightly mangled and required a lot of effort just to get it up enough so I could back the car out.  There was nothing more I could do, and had to drive away, leaving the door wide open because it would no longer close. 

Driving to the school, all I could think about was how stupid I had been, of how much money I had probably just cost us, and I cringed, knowing I needed to call my husband and confess before he beat me home and saw the mangled door. 

So of course, I did what any sane, grown-up woman would do-  I called my mama.  : ) 

Unfortunately, she wasn't home, and my Dad answered instead.  And he was NO HELP AT ALL!  He chuckled unsympathetically, and quite cynically, and said,
"Oh man, he is going to be so mad at you!  He isn't going to be happy at all!" 

Thanks, Dad.  Just the encouragement I needed.

Unable to postpone the inevitable any loner, I parked in the school parking lot, and dialed my cell phone.  And you know what? 

Instead of condemning me or expressing the anger I was sure was due to me, King Charming said, "It's OK.  I'll check it out when I get home." 

At home, he whistled while he worked on the garage door, getting it back on track.  Then he walked in the kitchen, gave me a kiss and hug and said, "Well, it works again."  Then he winked and said, "And the big bulge in the door gives it character." 

I couldn't believe the difference between the reaction I anticipated receiving and the mercy and grace he showed me instead.   

I was given MERCY

The definition of mercy is NOT getting what you do deserve

I was shown GRACE

The definition of grace is getting what you DON'T deserve

I thought of how this little melodrama that unfolded here Wednesday afternoon was a picture of how Jesus treats me- forgiving me, taking my punishment upon Himself to show me mercy, and loving me with a grace that I do not deserve.  

This whole thing made me thankful, and humble. LOL.  

Don't they say that people want houses with character?  Mine has some now.  : )

Happy Friday All!