April 30, 2012 § Leave a comment
This is our new playroom. It’s not complete, as you can hopefully see. But it is indeed, our playroom. This weekend we took on a HUGE project – putting the boys together in one room, and turning DS1’s larger bedroom into a playroom.
We live in a small house – approximately 1200 sq. feet, on one level. There are three bedrooms and two bathrooms. A very small kitchen, a dining room, and a living room. The dining room and living room are attached, and are the first thing you see when you walk into the house. Up until now, we have had the toys in the living room/playroom. I’ve always hated that the first thing you see in the house is kid-land. But it has been our only option. For awhile now, I’ve wanted to put the boys together in a room, but we just hadn’t done it, because it’s a huge undertaking. DS2 (14 months) has been sleeping in his crib, crammed into our office. 3 bookshelves FULL of books, a closet full of office supplies, 2 milk crates and 2 file cabinets, all full of office things. DS1 (almost 3) has had his own room for awhile. It’s a big room, with a patio door (which we have had to secure from the OUTSIDE so he doesn’t open it and escape) and a tiny window (which he also climbs out of – remember, ground floor), laminate hardwood floors, and it is FREEZING.
Project room change began around 9 a.m. Making a long story short, we picked up a new to us loft bed for free (thanks Julie and Caleb!), moved a tonne of furniture, books, and office supplies, did a lot of vacuuming behind furniture, a lot of dusting, and had two very confused kids. The end result? A room for two little boys to share, and a playroom for them to hang out in! A good idea? Absolutely!
Now if only I could figure out how to get them to sleep without keeping each other up 2 hours past bedtime…
April 24, 2012 § Leave a comment
This is my great-grandmother. She was 101. She passed away in the night, on April 23. Mother (as we called her) was one of the strongest, most precious people I have ever known. I feel so blessed to have known her personally and intimately myself, unlike many people out there who do not know their relatives at all. She has been personally precious to me, not just a distant relative who I have heard stories about.
Mother has personally kissed my owies, handed me buckets or jars to catch frogs with, given me advice – mostly to be obedient to my parents. She has prayed for me. Most of all, I know she has prayed for me. Every day, she prayed for each of her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren by name. Mother has been such a precious gift. I wish my children had a chance to know her as I did.
Realistically, I understand that living to 130 so that her great-great grandchildren can know her is a tad unrealistic. I truly feel as though I know my great-uncle, who passed away at the age of 10 – 20 years before I was born – because my mother has talked so freely about him. I know my children will also feel as though they know Mother, as well as Papa (my grandfather) because of the memories I keep alive.
These people in our lives are precious gifts. I want to always make sure I don’t take them for granted. I want to appreciate every moment I get with the people God has given me. Family is precious. Don’t take it for granted.
April 13, 2012 § Leave a comment
About ten days ago I started getting mysterious junk mail. A lot of it. Around the same time, my anti virus software kept popping up saying my Firewall was off. I would turn it on, and three seconds later, it would turn itself off again. A virus.
I spent a great deal of time doing spyware and malware scans, and they found 118 malicious files on my computer, which I got rid of. But still the pesky problems. Now, I could have taken my computer in to a shop for them to fix it. But then my family wouldn’t have eaten this week. So I knew I had to somehow fix it myself.
With much trepidation, I posted my problem on a PC forum for help. Lo and behold, I ended up with the most fantastic tech guide helping me along. It took six hours (I’m sure he was helping a number of other people at the same time), a variety of logs, scans, deletions, restarts, and instructions. And today? No virus. And I can look back now, and I know what I did. I understand the purpose for every step taken, and how the steps all came together for a final positive end.
What was the lesson I learned? During all of this, I really wasn’t quite sure what I was doing. I was following instructions blind. I had no idea who this person was on the other end of the computer, and I had no idea whether or not he wanted to help me, or cause further issues. But I knew my options were limited. I had to follow his instructions, or I would continue to live infected.
Here’s the lesson. God often gives us instructions one little step at a time. He doesn’t give us the whole picture, but he expects us to follow each and every small instruction along the way. And at the end, we can look back, and see how all the pieces were put together to create one final result. He doesn’t expect us to understand why we’re doing something. He doesn’t expect us to understand how. He just expects us to do it. And if we do, at the end, we will see the results, and how they all fit together.
April 12, 2012 § 1 Comment
I once heard a pastor (possibly even my husband) say that God can more easily guide us if we are moving, than if we are sitting down and waiting.
I experienced a wonderful example of this yesterday as I was putting my 14 month old son to bed. He was standing up and running around and I caught his hand and said “lets go find your bed now!”, and started walking towards his room. Along the way he wanted to veer into the kitchen, but I was able to steer him away. And then he wanted to explore the bathroom, but I was holding his hand, so he came with me. And we ended up in his bedroom. And he went to bed, where his mother wanted him to be.
This is a great example of God and us. As long as we are moving SOMEWHERE, He can guide us into the place where he wants us. However, if we choose to sit down and wait for Him to pick us up, it is so much more difficult for Him and for us.
The moral of the story? Get up. Make a decision. Get moving. Let God guide you.
April 10, 2012 § 3 Comments
Things are getting easier.
Two months ago, I was at the point that I thought life was going to suck forever. Not that I didn’t love my kids or my husband, because I absolutely did/do. I appreciated the fact that my husband works hard so I can stay home and be a mom. That love and appreciation has always been there.
But when you stay home alone, with two kids two and under every day with hardly an opportunity to go out, it certainly makes life a little more difficult. It’s really easy to get into “pity party” mode. And then people say to you “women have been doing this since the beginning of time. Suck it up!”, well, that doesn’t make things any easier.
Then I admitted it. I admitted to my husband that I had been feeling this way for a long time. I don’t know why that changed things, but it did.
Now things are getting easier. I’m still home alone all day, every day, with two kids two and under. I’m still solely responsible for cooking, cleaning, bathing, grocery buying, bill paying, flower planting, life planning, and everything else a stay at home mom does. The kids still drive me nuts on a regular basis. But things are getting better.
I got an idea from a different blog I read, and I really wish I could remember which one, to set alarms on my phone. I thought it was genius, so I started doing it (and of course, I had to personalize ring tones for each alarm). At 9:30, my phone sings the Barney “Clean Up” song, to which my children immediately start dancing and tidying their toys (in my dream world). At 4:00, my phone starts to sing the “Cuppy Cake” song, by Shirley Temple, which is a reminder for me to prepare dinner. At 7:00 a.m., my phone gently wakes me up so I have 30 minutes alone to spend with God before the day begins. This one is the hardest for me, as I am NOT a morning person.
So things are getting better. I am: a) spending some alone time with God every day. b) trying to schedule myself and the kids a bit better so that there is an order to life. c) putting the computer away, and d) letting it go. I’m not a perfect mother. But I’m trying. I love my kids. I think they are the most precious gifts from God. I treasure them every day, even when they are running in circles yelling at the top of their lungs. If I’m still in my Tinkerbell pajamas as 8:30 a.m. (oh no no no, that wouldn’t be today…) so what? One kid is dressed. The other is still in jammies. They’ve eaten. They’re playing. Where is the “wrong” in that picture?
My new phrase… “so what?” It’s helping.
ADDED: I found the blog with the alarm idea. Here it is! Life In A Shoe