If Only I had More Faith in God

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I enjoy social media. I think it can be a great way to keep in touch with far-flung friends. It can give families a way to share photos quickly. I know for me, it allows my Grandma to be able to see frequent pictures of her great-grandkids.  As someone, who suffers from chronic pain, social media can be a great way to mindlessly pass the time when painsominia (insomnia caused be pain.) strikes. Social media can be a great way to find support groups for various chronic illnesses/disabilities. However, there are also downsides to social media.

Every January, I see an alarming number of post from all sorts of people, whom I follow on my social media channels. It happens like clockwork at the beginning of every year.  I have included two examples of what I am talking about.

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(Credit: Unknown for both of them)

 

 

Now my objection to post of this nature isn’t because I am a crazy atheist, who gets upset anytime God/Jesus are mentioned. I am a Christian. I have accepted Jesus Christ as my savior. I pray on a regular basis and my spiritual life is vital to my wellbeing as an individual.  I am also someone, who suffers from severe chronic pain and have for almost a decade. When I read post like this, I don’t get a warm and fuzzy feeling. What I do feel is that my fellow Christians, whether they mean to or not, are telling me I am just not a good enough Christian. If I was just a better more faithful Christian;  I wouldn’t suffer from severe chronic pain. After all, as the first picture states, “If you KNEW how He can transform you, how he can take away all that bitterness, that sorrow, that hurt, that depression, anxiety.” Now I don’t personally believe that my medical issues are because I am not a good enough Christian. I don’t expect a miracle healing me from God- if I was blessed enough to receive one; I would rejoice. But God is under no obligation to give me a miracle just because I believe in him. God will love me regardless of how broken I am. He will give me the strength to deal with my challenges.

I am sure there are people, who will read this and say that I am just over sensitive. However, I have had numerous discussions with other people from my various support groups over the years, who feel the same way I do. The easiest way to confirm that my feelings aren’t isolated is to scroll through the comments on these type of post. After all, not only do these sort of sayings tell people like me that we deserve our pain/disease because we simply aren’t good enough Christians; they do immense damage to Christians, who suffer from mental illnesses. Upon reading either one of the images, it sounds as if someone with depression, anxiety, or any of the dozens of mental illness that exist, that they are just not good enough Christians. They are letting Satan be the voice in their heads. People with mental illnesses already have a hard enough time. They don’t need to be made to feel worse because they aren’t Christian enough; they aren’t praying or being faithful enough.

These sort of memes and post aren’t helpful. They aren’t useful tools for evangelizing people. They are harmful. They cheapen God and make him some sort of commodity. They make it sound like if you have enough faith- are devout enough God will cure you of every ill in your life.
Most importantly, these types of messages communicate that people with chronic medical issues (physical or mental) aren’t good enough Christians. They deserve to have their medical problems because they just haven’t been devout enough. They don’t love Jesus enough.

I love Jesus and I have a very strong faith in him. I have no shame in calling myself a Christian. I will proudly stand up and proclaim myself one. However, I can no longer sit quietly without speaking up while these sort of post are frequently circulated. They are belittling and damaging to those with medical issues, even if that is not the original intent. It is entirely possible that people don’t realize the deeper meaning behind them. They believe they are sharing the good news of Christ. I am begging that in the future if you go to click share on a post about how amazing God/Jesus is that you really look at the wording of it.  We can share the good news of God without making it sound like our brothers and sisters, who suffer from illness and other troubles are Christians, who need to try harder.


Birthdays Galore Without Going Broke

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It’s birthday season in our house. We have three birthdays between January and April. Needless to say by the time we get to the end of April this momma is birthday out. However, birthdays are important in our house. For example with one son born so close to Christmas I always want to make sure his birthday doesn’t get lost in the celebrating of Christmas. With their birthdays so close it can be tempting to celebrate them at once but I want them each to have their own special day.

Growing up birthdays were a big deal in my family. My father use to wake me up at 5:24am every birthday to wish me happy birthday. He said he wanted to say it at the exact moment his greatest joy was born.(Funny part of it was that my birth certificate says I was born at 5:24pm. He swore it was a misprint.) Even, after I moved out he would still call me at exactly 5:24am my time. That meant for the 5 years we lived in a different time zone he was actually waking up at 4:24 his time to call me. His birthday call is probably one of the things I will miss the most now that he is gone.

For most parents birthdays are an extravagant expensive occasion. It is an occasion were hundreds of dollars is spent. I am part of several mom’s groups and I think for most a birthday party cost somewhere between $500-$1000 by the time they pay for the party and gifts. I just can’t wrap my mind around spending that much on a child’s birthday. You times that by four and Mark might very well have a heart attack. Time and time again I hear parents say kids have to have these fancy parties. It’s what ever one else is doing. They expect it. You build your child’s expectations.

Our children always enjoy their birthdays and  we are not spending $1000s of dollars on them. The birthday boy gets to pick where they would like eat for dinner that night. (It’s almost always chic-fil-a) We do cake, ice-cream and gifts together. They pick a family activity to do. In past years we’ve had movie night at home, visited museums and picnics at the park. As they get older we start having small low-key parties at our house. Nothing fancy. We invite a few friends over: play and share cake with them. The kids have a great time. The stress is low for me and it doesn’t break the bank.

So, here’s to making birthdays special and remembering that to make them special it doesn’t need to cost a fortune.


Long Over Due Daybook

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FOR TODAY

Outside my window…
Mosquitoes…..they are awful. However, the weather has been wonderful. It has been unseasonably cool given that it is the end of August. Maybe, fall will come on time this year! There has definitely been a few fall like days. One more really warm beaching going day would make two little boys very happy. Paul and Thomas want to take Daddy to the beach to play now that he is home.

I am thinking…
It has been pretty quiet here on the blog because we have been extremely busy between moving and daddy coming home. I am thinking about new homes and setting them up to run efficiently. I am thinking about schedules, list, organization, and clutter.  How I desire to be a happy homemaker. The last few years being a happy homemaker has been hard…..being a good homemaker has been hard. The chronic pain from my back was very limiting in what I could do. I am excited to start off in a new house with very little pain to hinder me.

I am thankful…

I am thankfully to have my husband home safe and sound from his deployment. I am thankfully for having my family whole again.

In the kitchen…
I have been channeling my inner Laura Ingalls Wilder! About 2 months ago we joined a local CSA. We buy produce and meat through the program. We have had a surplus of produce and so I’ve been busy freezing stuff to use later this year. I’ve prepped greens beans and corn on the cob. I’ve made my own stewed tomatoes to freeze. I tried making blueberry freezer jam but something went wrong. It turned into a disaster.

I am wearing…
My favorite (and only) pair of jean capris with a cute black empire wasted tank top. However, I noticed that there is a hole forming in the tank top. So, this will probably be the last time I wear it. I’ve been doing some updating to my wardrobe and recently bought a really nice pair of jeans. It has been so long since I have invested in good jeans that I forgot how wonderful a nice pair of jeans could be.

I am creating…
I am making Schultütes for the start of the school year. Paul will be starting kindergarten and Thomas will be doing preschool. I found the idea of Schultütes from Jessica, over at Shower of Roses. It seems like such a fun idea. I will most likely make something smaller for Antonio because I don’t want him to feel left out. I’ve found some fun Spiderman themed school products for Thomas and some fun Avenager themed ones for Paul.

I am wondering…
How to best manage food…..lately it seems every time I turn around to make something one of the children has polished it off. All the boys have been growing (They all just went up a clothing size….Thomas multiple sizes!) and have been ravenous. I would like a better way to keep them from eating ingredients for meals!

I am reading…
Nothing really….it’s been so busy that I haven’t had the time. However, I am hoping things slow down soon so I can resume reading. After all I have an awesome Kindle Paperwhite now that Mark is home from his deployment to read on.

I am hoping…
I am hoping that the doctor is wrong and that there will be more babies in the future. To be told that at twenty-five that I shouldn’t have any more babies is heartbreaking. I can’t imagine Antonio being our last.

I am looking forward to…
The beauty of autumn as it arrives. That is one thing I will miss when we finally move onward from Virginia is the amazing changing of colors that comes with fall. It isn’t something I had ever experienced prior to moving here. The autumn coloring of the trees is breathtaking. I am hoping we can make a trip up into the mountains to hike among the autumn trees this year.

Around the house…
We are still working on unpacking everything. We are doing things like hanging quilts on the wall as décor to help muffle the sound of three lively young boys. The new house is completely wood/tile flooring and makes for quite a noisy house. We added a very bright green rug to the boys playroom and it has been a huge help. It is been very nice to have all this extra space but it also brings along some of its own organizational challenges like needing new bookcases. Our last rental had a built in bookcase that we used.

I am pondering…
At the end of July I had my one year follow-up for my back surgery. Sadly, the appointment did not go as well as I had hoped. The surgery was a success. The fusion healed great. However, I had been having some very serious pain for about a month in my lower back/hip area. It turns out that the pain was coming from my SI-joint. We ended up doing a steroid injection for it. It worked great. My pain has practically gone completely away. However, the doctor also told me that having another child was highly ill-advised. He told me that another pregnancy could leave me with a permanent disability and issues walking. He said the odds were very high of that happening. I never imaged my family being so smile. I figured there would be more children done the line. I figured I would have a daughter at some point. So, I am pondering family size. I am pondering how to come to terms with the idea that my family will not be the large family I always imagined I would have.

A favorite quote for today…

“God does not measure our perfection by the many things we do for Him, but by how we do them.”
– St. Francis de Sales


Bargain Books for Christmas!

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I like books…always have. I moved more boxes of books when Mark and I married then I did clothes.  I especially adore children’s picture books.  However, I have a hard time dropping a lot of money down on them. However, I love a good bargain for a new book.  (Though I am a huge fan of used books too and miss having a half-price books around.)

Lately, I’ve came across some really great bargain books for Christmas. Mostly, thanks to Shower of Roses. (Her site is fantastic and I highly recommend checking it out.) However, I’ve came a across a few gems on my own.

The other day at the dollar store I came across this gem St. Francis and the Nativity. I thought it was especially great in light of our new Pope. The colors of the pictures are extremely rich and beautifully done.

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I took advantage of the fantastic price of this picture book The Twelve Days of Christmas.

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I originally bought a copy for my boys when Jessica posted about it being on sale for $5. A few days later after mine had arrived and I was able to see just how beautiful the illustrations were I saw on Amazon that the price had dropped to $1.91 (which is what it currently still is!). I snagged 4 more copies to give as gifts to Godchildren and nieces/nephews come Christmas time. After, seeing how wonderfully it is illustrated I am going to have to keep an eye out for Gennady Spirin’s book We Three Kings.

I pre-ordered a copy of Bambinelli Sunday: A Christmas Blessing. The story sounds really sweet and I am excited to share it with the boys. I was thinking I could even see if our priest would be willing to bless our Baby Jesus figure. I think the boys find that just awesome.
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Lastly, back in April Jessica, over at Shower of Roses posted a bunch of bargain books from an author named Demi for $5 a piece. At that time I ordered 3 of her books- Alexander the Great, Tutankhamun and St. Joan of Arc. I really wanted to add her Legend of St. Nicholas title to our library since we always celebrate his feast day in December. However, I wasn’t willing to spend $20 on it. I had a $5 dollar coupon off at a local bookstore and thought I might be able to pick it up there. However, they wanted $30 for it!
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But, this evening while browsing Amazon I lucked out and came across it on sale for $7.98! It should arrive next week! I am very excited to add it to our Christmas book collection. Demi’s books at just simply exquisite.


7 Quick Takes (Vol 1)

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-1-
Mother’s day is coming up this weekend. My boys are to young to plan a mother’s day on  their own. So, Mark made sure to get online and send my favorite flowers to me. They arrived yesterday.  Mark’s work also sent over a mother’s day gift basket full of goodies. The boys helped me quickly polish off the lindor truffles.
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-2-
Last week I bought myself new sneakers because my previous pair literally fall apart. I have always been the person who goes into a store and purchases the cheapest pair that I can find . However, this time since I have been working out more often I decided to splurge on a pair. They are amazing….I can’t believe I’ve spent so many years wearing crappy sneakers.
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We’ve had lots of packages from Amazon arrive this week and the boys have been having a blast with them. Nothing like a box to encourage creative play.

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The beginning of the week was very rainy. However, the last few days have been perfect weather for outings to the park and beach.
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This is the boys’ haul from the beach. Paul was very intrigued about the crab shell; especially since last time we were there he saw a sand crab. When we arrived home we spent some time on the computer looking up more information on the crab.  400705_10151598795469936_1287782111_n
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I’ve been spending the evenings working on a new drawing. I don’t draw or paint nearly as often as I would like due to lack of space. I am working on not letting that prevent me from working on art.
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Mark bought both Paul and Thomas a legos star wars kit. In the first 24 hours I rebuilt both ships half a dozen times each. I was ready to super glue them together; so I didn’t have to keep putting them together. However, Mark didn’t want me to do that. Now, several days later I am glad I didn’t. The boys have been using the pieces to build all sorts of cool creations of their own.
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Steven- the Man who Taught me to Live.

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There are people and events that happen in our life that will forever define us. Define who we are- who we become. They change us at our core.  Some of these are so simple that we don’t really think about them; getting married and having children.  The changes tend to be subtle and happen gradually over time.  Then there are the moments…moments that in a blink of an eye forever change you. They send your entire world into a tailspin and leave you reeling.

March 4, 2005 was one such day for me. I can define myself in two distinct halves the pre and the post Steven.  Steven; a man I known for as long as I could remember. A man I named my firstborn after.  Steven; my father’s best friend; my friend, my uncle, my hero, my first girlhood crush love. Steven; a man plagued by demons that drove him to his death.

On March 4, 2005 I came home to the words, “Steven’s dead. He shot himself.” I could say my world crashed down around me but it didn’t. Not then. No, that was to come several days later as I stood in the kitchen of a friend listening to my mother on the other line of the phone. As I hung up he asked me if everything was okay. Those simple words of concerned caused my whole world to crumble. I collapsed in his arms and cried for the first time since the words, “Steven’s dead” were spoken.

Steven; my hero was gone and as I would come to find out he was no hero- he was broken. His fun loving exterior hid a deeply tarnished interior. An interior he never shared with me. I am not sure what made me feel more betrayed at the time that he had left me; abandoned me as I was getting ready to embark on adulthood or that my friend, my hero who I thought I knew turned out to be someone else. I was angry- oh I was so angry at him for leaving me. I blamed myself for not being able to make him happy because at my core I liked to make people happy. I wanted those that I loved to be happy and I wanted to do whatever I could to make them happy. Up until Steven’s death I had lived my life solely for the purpose of making others happy. I would have sacrificed my own happiness for theirs.

Tomorrow marks eight years since we buried him. Eight years since I sat in a pew at a church listening to some man; who didn’t know a damn thing about Steven talk about him like he knew him. The irony was Steven didn’t believe in God- not the God that man believed in. Eight years since I snuck quietly into the empty room where his coffin laid and quietly opened the top to say one last goodbye to the man; who had meant so much to me. Eight years since I stood in the cemetery in the gray gloom (Steven’s favorite kind of day) and tried to block it all out and wish it away.

A hell of lot has happened in these last eight years. I finished high school. I met my soul mate and married him in a whirl wind engagement. I have had three wonderful smart little boys. I have removed my mother from my life- the woman who bore me because she was and is toxic to me because I couldn’t make her happy and make myself happy.  I am not the girl; who use to sit in his study and talk with him. I am not the girl; who was willing to put her dreams and wants on hold to make those around her happy. I have him to thank for that.

I am not sure if I would have ever found the courage to be me and live for me if not for Steven’s suicide and a year and a half later the murder of his wife. The two of them- in all of their tragedy taught me the most important lesson I believe a person can ever learn. You never know how long you have on this earth. You never know when your ticket is up and you had best make the most of it.  Before, Steven died I always believed I would have time later down the road to make myself happy; to live for me. That I could make the people around me happy and there would be time later for my dreams and wants. Steven showed me that wasn’t true. Steven’s death and Sherry’s actions following his death that lead to her murder taught me that I needed to grab life and live it on my terms. They taught me that my dreams and happiness had to come first before that of others.  I couldn’t let other’s live my life for me.

So, while I miss Steven dearly. While, I wish he could have been there to see my dressed up just a month after his death for prom. While, I wish he could have been there to see me walk for graduation. While, I wish he could have meet Mark. While, I wish he could have walked me down the aisle with my father on my wedding day. While, I wish he could meet my sons; especially Paul, whose middle name is in his honor. I don’t know if any of those things after my high school graduation would have happened if he had still been alive. I don’t believe I would have had the courage to grab the life that Mark offered me- a life of love, marriage, friendship and children after just 3 months of knowing him if Steven had not committed suicide.

So, Steven. Though, I miss you so, very much. Thank you. Thank you for teaching me the value of life and the value of living for yourself. I will always love you.


My the husband is gone project list

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In order to fill the evenings with Mark is gone after the boys have gone to bed I came up with a list of projects:

  • -purge and sort the baby and toddler clothes
  • - decorate the living room
  • - paint dresser
  • -paint coffee table
  • -decorate the bathroom
  • -decorate and make our bedroom a retreat for us
  • -set up playroom for boys
  • -set up creative space for the boys
  • -finish home notebook and keep it up to date
  • - blog more regularly
  • - purge each room of the house of excess clutter
  • -organize photos
  • -make Paul’s 4 and 5 year photobooks
  • - make Antonio’s first photobook
  • -make Thomas’ 3year photobook
  • -make yearly family photobooks for 2006/2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012
  • - Plan out the first half of the school year
  •  – author studies
  •  -science lessons

 


Lent 2013

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Lent started 4 days ago…but in some ways it’s just starting for me this year. We are sacrificing big time over here. Even the boys are this year. Oddly, enough none of it is stuff that we gave up specifically for Lent. It all just coincides with Lent this year.  The only thing that I am actually doing on purpose for Lent is de-cluttering our house. Moving the junk out….I can’t move my emotional baggage out very well but I can move the physical baggage out. I can move that out so much easier than the emotional baggage…the emotional bag I fear will take years with a therapist.

We have gone gluten-free to see if it makes a difference for Thomas. We want to see if a gluten sensitivity is part of the reason or the whole reason why he has so much trouble gaining weight. We started at the first of the month but then an emergency trip for a funeral and the associated travel de-railed us. So, as of today we are officially back on the band wagon of gluten free. It actually isn’t as hard to be gluten free at home as I feared it would be. The big thing though is eating out. It’s very hard to eat out- at least at the sort of places the kids like to eat out at and do it gluten free. Therefore; at least for the time being we aren’t eating out. Sacrificing eating out is huge for me….it’ll be good for our budget though. I enjoy eating out. I like not having to cook, I like having it to fall back onto when I have crazy days. I like it in general. It’s especially hard to give eating out up with Mark being gone and that brings me to our next sacrifice this Lent- giving up Mark for the next six months while he is deployed.

He is half a world away from us and will be till sometime in August. He left yesterday and I already miss him like crazy. The boys miss Daddy as well. Mark is my everything and I relay on him for so much; which was glaringly apparent today at Mass. So, not having him here at home with us is a big sacrifice. It’s funny being a military wife I always knew there was a chance he could deploy. Hell, I knew it was likely that he would deploy at some point. But, I never really thought he would.

So, yeah this year Lent has a really big sacrificial ring to it around our house; a much bigger ring then it typically does and while Lent ends with Easter for us this year it’s going to be lasting a lot longer then just 40 days.

Saint Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray;
and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host –
by the Divine Power of God –
cast into hell, satan and all the evil spirits,
who roam throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls.

Amen.

Picture credit: http://www.marianland.com/tan1106/stmicharlthearchangelsmall.html


End of January Day Book

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FOR TODAY

Outside my window…
We are back to rainy and gray. Ugh, how I despise gray weather. However, we did have a nice reprieve from it this past weekend. Friday night we enjoyed a light blanket of snow- just enough to leave everything pretty but not so much as to be a nuisance if you needed to get out and go somewhere. Then we had two days of beautiful sunshine; even if it was still bitterly cold.

(Heading out to Play)

(Daddy’s Snowman)

(Mommy’s “melted” snowman)

I am thinking…
Of gardening and the desire to grow our own vegetables. I am hoping to do some container gardening this summer and make it part of our homeschooling; so the children can learn about the life cycle of plants. Maybe I can even get them to try a few new vegetables. I am hoping to grow lettuce, onions, tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, carrots and radishes. I would love to grow some squash but I don’t believe those would do well in container gardening. I am also hoping to try my hand at blueberries and strawberries.

I am thankful…
That my family and I have a home to be warm and snug in during this cold snap we have been having and that unlike my friends further north it isn’t in the negative temps.   Below freezing is cold enough for me without getting way below freezing.

In the kitchen…
February’s dinner menu is completely planned- 28 gluten free meals planned. I need to finish up the weekly breakfast and lunch menus. I also need to make our kitchen plans for valentine’s day.  I have successfully used up quite a bit of pantry stuff this past month. I still have quite a bit of flour left that we won’t be able to use before the 1st of the month. I am going to make some playdough for the children with it.

I am wearing…
Comfortable gray linen pants with a ¾ sleeve teal green top. I recently used a seam ripper to remove all the beading from the top and just leaving the pretty embroidery The shirt is now so much friendly for the holding and cuddling of little people; with their exploring hands and mouths. .

I am creating…
Well, I went straight from the kids being sick to me being sick; so, not much creativity here again this past week. I have been spending the evenings working on my home management binder.  However, the children are very busy creating lots of lego things. We celebrated Paul and Thomas’ birthdays early; since Mark won’t be here for their actual birthdays. Paul’s birthday gift was a starter set of legos. He has been great at sharing them with Thomas (I am pretty positive I should have bought him a set of legos as his gift and not the playmobil schoolbus he wanted). I am now seriously considering buying Thomas his own thing of legos. While, they are doing okay sharing there is also been more whining and bickering over them then I would like- such as now.

I am wondering…
About better managing my stress. I have never been very good at managing stress or relaxing for that matter. I tend to stress until I start to feel physically unwell. Mark leaving for deployment has been no different. While, I am confident in my ability to take care of the children while he is gone I worry nonetheless. I worry about his safety, about the kids and myself missing him, about the budget and about staying strong in matters with my parents without his physical support next to me. I worry about Antonio not recognizing him in six month time when he returns. Mostly I worry about his safety. All that worry and stress is starting to take a physical toil on me. My stomach has been most unhappy with me of late and I am starting to get headaches from it. So, as of this morning I am resolved to better manage my stress. I plan to make sure I am vocalizing my stress and talking about my worries with Mark. I am writing them down to make them less daunting and I am working on relaxing my mind and body through prayer and exercising. I am making sure to really focus on the children and enjoying the time spent with them.

I am reading…
I came across a book my mother-in-law let me borrow a while ago; that I had forgotten about. It’s  called “That Gift of ADHD Activity book: 101 Ways to Turn Your Child’s Problems into Strengths.” I just started it last night but I think it will be a very informative read and will have some great ideas for Paul.

I am hoping…
To make the most of the next 3 weeks with Mark. I don’t want to get so bogged down in the little things like packing that we miss the big things like spending time with one another and enjoying it to its fullest.

I am looking forward to…
The arrival of Annie and Jamie at the end of this week. They are Thomas and Antonio’s Godparents and some of our very best friends. Getting the chance to spend time with them is always a treat. We will be celebrating Antonio’s first birthday with a party while they are here to.

I am learning
The value of quiet me time before the day starts. I normally don’t manage to wake up before the children. However, I am think I definitely want to change that. This morning I was up before the kids and started the morning with quiet prayer time while I did some exercises.  It was a nice slow but beneficial start to the day. I could get use to the rhythm of starting the morning with quiet time for myself before the children wake up and we get busy with the day to day stuff. I can see how having this time for myself in the morning would make me a better mother.

Around the house…
Packing and more packing. We have been busy packing Mark’s stuff for his upcoming trip. I am also working on plans on how to make our house a home. One of my big goals for the 6 months Mark is gone is to make a home for us. Sadly, with the fact that we rent and have moved a lot (this current place is the longest we have lived in one place at 2.5 years. In the first 4 years of our marriage we moved 5 times!) we have fallen into the habit of just treating the house as a temporary place to store our stuff and ourselves. We lack the feeling of our home being a place to stop, relax, enjoy and re-charge. Instead, it seems like we treat it as just a place to make a quick pit-stop before continuing onward. I want to change this by just adding more homey decorating type things to our house. Obviously, they have to be things that we can pack up and take with us to the next house but I think it’s do-able.

I am pondering…
Curriculum and author studies. I am very busy planning out our first year of homeschooling. Paul will be in kindergarten and Thomas will be in preschool. I had no intentions of doing anything formal with Thomas originally. However, he is very much into doing what big brother Paul does; so I need to have plans for him as well or we won’t get anything done.   Some, things will be done by both children such as science and author studies. However, I want to have more age appropriate things on hand for math and phonics for Thomas.

A favorite quote for today…
“When spiritual joy fills hearts, the Serpent throws off his deadly poison in vain. The devils cannot harm the servant of Christ when they see he is filled with holy joy.” St. Francis of Assisi.

This is the think from “Small Steps for Catholic Moms” by Danielle Bean and Elizabeth Foss for today. I think it was a very timely reminder for me today. Focus of filling myself with joy and not stress. If I fill myself with joy- joy in my children and husband than the devil doesn’t have a place to gain a foothold with his negative voice.

One of my favorite things…
Seeing the joy a child exudes when they do something for themselves like make their own bowl of cereal for breakfast or when they dress themselves without momma’s help. While, it can be bittersweet because it means your babies are growing up it should also be a very joyful event to see that they are growing as God meant for them to.

(Antonio Exploring at the Mall)

A few plans for the upcoming week:
Take a scouting trip a few specialty grocery stores to price some gluten free products and figure out where the best value is for us.  Take Antonio for his one year photos- which we had to cancel due to sickness last week. Grocery shopping for the beginning of February and purchase the last few items need for Antonio’s birthday party this weekend. Take the boys to a local science museum for a fun filled day with Daddy and Mommy. Then this weekend we head up to Aunt Teresa and Uncle Eddie’s to meet Annie and Jamie and have a birthday party!


Say What?

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Here are a few funnies that have spilled forth from Paul and Thomas recently.

 

Paul: “I want to go home”

Me: “as soon as we are done shopping”

Paul: “that’s not acceptable”

 

Me: “Thomas, don’t stand on your brother.”

Paul: “It’s alright if he stands on me.”
Paul after moving to another couch, “Antonio was cramping my style.”

 

Thomas (wearing a spiderman mask) as we walk into Krispy Kreme:  “Spiderman has arrived for doughnuts!”

 

Thomas had to have some more blood work done and here is the conversation he had with the lab tech.
Thomas to lap tech, “I am Spiderman”

Lap tech: “Cool”

Taking in the lap tech’s white lap coat, “You the lizard?”

Lap tech not missing a beat, “Sometimes I am.”

After the lap tech is finished and we are getting ready to leave Thomas looks at him and says, “Next time I am going to have to fight you. Okay?”