Saturday, October 30, 2010

Big Picture

Driving home from a Halloween Party tonight, my husband and I had some real adult conversation.  We get bogged down in the day to day life of working parenthood and swim lessons, dinosaur school, etc., we sometimes forget about the big picture, and even when we think about it, we rarely talk about it anymore. 

Mainly because, it's scary.

I have a handful of fears in my life in regards to my kids.  I may not be ready to share those, but they're still there.  Sometimes when I think about the big picture of our life, I wonder how I ever made it here.  I wonder how we survived it all and became the strong family we are today.  I am proud of what we've accomplished, but I looking at the big picture always takes me back to those fears I hold hidden within myself. 

I have worries in my motherhood, that I hope there are very few others who experience, not because I don't long for people to connect to, but because I pray that other families don't have to have the same path to happiness and love.  So tonight, I set and reflect on our life so far and the challenges we have to face.  I pray that no matter where life may take our family, I lead by example.  I trust that God is with all of us each day helping us make the right decisions today, tomorrow, and the next, and 40 years from now. 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Just Thursday

Outside my window... it is dark.
The time is...8:54 p.m.
Today I feel...sick.
I am thinking...I don't want to go to work tomorrow.
At the moment, I am be home from my work travels.
I am going...bed soon.
I am favorite green sweat pants and a Disney World t-shirt I've had since 6th grade.
I wish...I didn't have this cold!
I am reading...The Five Love Languages.  Still.  I'm loosing interest.
I am working on...finding my workout motivation again.
I am hoping...for a relaxing weekend.
I am hearing...some dumb extermination tv show my husband is watching.
I bet you didn't husband got a new job!
One of my favorite...meals is spaghetti.

Weekend Plans...

[Thursday] Sleep.
[Friday] Preschool Halloween party; work; laundry.
[Saturday] Relaxing at home; cleaning; baking; Halloween party.
[Sunday] Church; relaxing.

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Beef Cows!

Tonight we were driving to the Mexican restaurant we were eating at for dinner with my parents tonight.  Along the way, Caden interjects into the conversation that there are beef cows over there!  They were there, I acknowledged that, and then Caden continues with: Mommy we're going to eat those.  They make cheeseburgers.  I like cheeseburgers.  Yes, yes they do, and yes we eat them!  Yum!

It makes me proud to know that I'm raising a little boy who is learning about agriculture and where our food comes from.  It's so important as agriculture is continually changing, and there is so much negative advertising about agriculture, that it is important to us that our children grow up understanding where our food comes from and why.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Just Thursday

Outside my window... a parking lot and some trees!
The time is...9:11 p.m. (MN time!)
Today I feel... ready to go home.
I am thinking... practice makes perfect.
At the moment, I am thankful... my career/job.
I am going... go to the airport tomorrow morning!
I am wearing... dress pants, turtle neck, and a blazer.  (It's chilly up here in MN!)
I wish... I was crawling into bed with my hubby tonight.
I am reading... The Five Love Languages. (Except I haven't touched it in awhile.)
I am working on... working meetings away from home.
I am hoping... for smooth flight home tomorrow.
I am hearing... humming. My room is next to the mechanical/electrical room.
I bet you didn't know... we had exciting news in our home this week!
One of my favorite... meals is spaghetti.

Weekend Plans.. 
[Thursday] Dinner and drink with the co-worker I'm traveling with.
[Friday] Flying home to dinner with my in-laws.
[Saturday] I promised the kids a pumpkin pie and jack-o-lanterns this weekend before leaving Monday for Colorado.
[Sunday] Relaxing, laundry, and packing before leaving again.

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Sunday, October 17, 2010

License Plates

My family and I spent the weekend in the State of New York visiting with my friend Robin.  

When we started driving through New York, I noticed a LOT of yellow colored license plates.

In my mind, all I could think was gee there are a lot of drunks in New York.

You see, I'm from Ohio.

In Ohio, only those with DUIs have yellow license plates. 

So to those of you from New York, I thought you were all a bunch of drunks.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Parenting Class: Week 2

This week we reviewed what we learned last week in class, and we started to expand.

This week our homework assignment is to expand on play time.  Not only are we to dedicate 10 minutes a day to child-directed play time, but we're also to start practicing some verbal coaching with the boys.  It's a method to talk about what they're doing during play time and encouraging their actions. 

We'll see how it goes; it's an awkward thing to do in practice.  (We do some role playing/practice in the class.)

On another note, when we broke down into small groups this week, my husband and I were separated.  I dislike that.  I'm not a social person.  I can't make small talk.  I'm very uncomfortable around people I don't know.  I like being able to use my husband as my "shoulder."  I should really work on this, but I'm not too motivated to. 

Next week I'm going to miss parenting class.  I'll be traveling in Minnesota for the week for work, but my husband is going to fill me in.  Hopefully after that, we'll be able to working in the same group!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Point Pleasant, NJ

Another segment of our vacation from July. I know, I'm late, but on with the fun!

After our first day was spent traveling, and our second day spent at Idlewild Park and Story Book Forest, we headed to NJ where we spent the late afternoon at the Point Pleasant.   

This is also where this moment happened.  I am so glad I blogged about it that day to remember our family vacation.  It is one of my favorite moments in our family life to date!  Since I didn't have a photo of that moment, I do have these to share!

I have never in my life seen so many people in once place, where all I could see for miles was person after person after person.  This shore is a crowded busy place.  I'm not a huge beach-goer, but in the ones I have been to (mostly in Florida) I have never had to pay to reach the water.  Nor have I not been able to find a place to put our things down, or even move 10 feet from my group and not be able to see them.  It definitely had my protective mommy instincts fully engaged!

My kids had been asking for a beach all summer.  We found a way to make it work, even if only for a few hours, they really enjoyed it!  I'm so happy we were able to fit this into our trip!

Saturday, October 09, 2010


Over our first anniversary weekend, my hubby and I spent part of our weekend in Ohio's Amish Country.

In that day and a half that my husband and I spent together wander the towns and shops of a different lifestyle, we pledged to take some steps toward simplifying our life.

We made a commitment to ourselves that at least one day of our weekends would be spent in our home.  Doing house projects or just enjoying the day as a family.  With only two exceptions: 1) if the day is Sunday, church is still allowed, and 2) we're allowed to plan periodic (less than once a month) weekend trips.

We've been so focused on taking the kids places and having them experience different places, tastes, and travels that somewhere along the line we forgot the importance of enjoying your home. 

It's almost as if we're taking a time our from the hustle and bustle of our busy lives to count our blessings.  Maybe we're taking a step to returning Sundays (or Saturday, weekend plans depending) to a day of rest as God intended.

The kids and I have been successful thus far.  This is our second weekend. 

Thursday, October 07, 2010


Sunday in church during children's moments, our Pastor asked the children if they knew how to love.

The responses varied from nodding heads, raised hands, and YEAHs!

Except for my children.

They sat their silently shaking their heads no.

My heart sank.  My mind raced a million places.  How could I have failed them in such a BIG way!?


Then I realized that they thought they were being funny.

As after church they shared with me how you give hugs and kisses to show my love.

Monday morning as I dressed for work and the kids got ready for day care I was showered with you're pretty and I likes!

Then my heart sang to the rooftops!

My boys can love, and their love is pure and innocent and enough to make any Monday morning brighter, or a Thursday evening!

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Parenting Class: Week 1

This evening was the first session of a twelve week parenting class my husband and I are taking as recommended by our pediatrician due to issues we've had at home and day care as of late. 

There is a small group of us that gather in a local church to learn The Incredible Years approach to parenting.

Each week we have a topic, and each week we have a homework assignment. 

This week, our primary topic was child-directed play. 

Our homework assignment, 10 minutes each day of child-directed play

Tomorrow we begin.  My husband and I have decided that we're going to do 10 minutes for each child, so while I spend my 10 minutes with Caleb, hubby will be spending it with Caden, then we'll switch. 

Do you spend time your children playing at their direction?

Monday, October 04, 2010

Praying for a Better Tomorrow

I think my heart is breaking.

Every day is another spin of the same story.

We're still having behavioral problems.  We're still struggling with meanness, hitting, kicking, and throwing things at other people.

That's a real problem at day care.  We're trying to be very proactive, but if other parents start complaining about my child, not only will I be humiliated, but we may be struggling for child care while my husband and I both work during the day.

I dislike that everyday is a constant focus on discipline.  I dislike that we can't just pick them up from day care and talk about their day.  We have to talk about why hitting is wrong, and how much it hurts other people.

Which usually ends with me in tears, sometimes before we're out of the day care parking lot.

We're forever grateful that our day care is working with us, and we are grateful for some really great teachers there.  But it gets harder and harder for me to leave them in day care, knowing that my child isn't thriving there.  He has some amazing moments, but there are struggles just moments later.

We're met with out pediatrician, and he confirmed what we had hoped for, that he's a normal little boy with a lot of ... spirit.  Our pediatrician stressed the need for consistency, which we are doing.  We've developed a system and we're sticking to it.

Our pediatrician also recommended a parenting class sponsored by a grant held in our county seat.  Our classes start tomorrow night and run every Tuesday for 12 weeks.  (Sidebar: Did you know that in 12 weeks is the week of Christmas! How is it so soon?)

[Edit: He didn't recommend parenting classes, because he though we were bad parents.  He said we're already doing the right things, but that we may be able to learn new techniques and more.  He used the analogy, every one takes prenatal classes without a second though, why is it that every one is hesitant about the offerings postnatal?]

I want nothing more than to raise a strong, healthy, boy who understands trust, respect, love, and the graciousness of our Lord, but it is a challenge.  One I don't know that I'm always ready for, but we fight the battle anyway.  Everyday.

Here's to praying for a better tomorrow.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Family Weddings

My mother-in-law has a slide converter.  It converts old slides into digital photos so your memories aren't lost.

We borrowed it for some time, and we borrowed my mom's slides.  My husband converted them.

Tonight, I'm looking through them.

I found this:
 This is a photo from my parent's wedding during a blizzard.

This is a photo from our rainy wedding courtesy of Laura at Perception Studio!

My parents and my husband and I were married in the same church.
The church looks the same despite the 30 years that past between our family weddings.

 There is something special about knowing your family history.