November 24, 2014

This is what happens....


This is what happens when you take your child to their one-year old check-up with the pediatrician, in the middle of a snow storm I might add, and as you pull them out of the car seat while the freezing wind is whipping at you and snow is pouring from the heavens, you realize that in the fifteen minutes it took you to dive there, they had done a swell job of soaking all their clothes with a super-whopping-colossal-mega-blow-out.


And you didn't bring extra clothes.

Hoping their poop-saturated clothes won't instantly freeze upon cold air contact, you race into the building while trying not to hug them too close, or slip in the quickly accumulating snow, while coercing a stubborn toddler into walking on their own though they are insisting upon being carried.


On the bright side, at least he wasn't wearing his coat in the car!


He didn't seem to mind his minimalistic outfit.




And this is what happens when you give your toddler a bowl of cereal.

Like... every day.


Caption this photo!

On the bright side, the floor get mopped... a lot!

November 10, 2014

Happiness is a Journey


"Beware of Destination Addiction... a preoccupation with the idea that happiness is in the next place, the next job and with the next partner. Until you give up the idea that happiness is somewhere else, it will never be where you are." ~Robert Holden


Somewhere along the line I seem to have forgotten how to look at and enjoy the little things, those mere moments that are here and gone in the blink of an eye.

I never wanted to be that frustrated mom. The one who was always overwhelmed, upset, grouchy, and boring.

I am in no way implying that it's not okay to feel that way sometimes. I'm sure we all do.

I just didn't want that to be my state of mind, my life, or the way my children remembered me.



Joseph teaching Savannah how to play chess.




I'm not so sure she's getting it. 


I needed to change my attitude.

Easier said then done.

As I've reflected on this change in myself, there are many things I could attribute to it.

But one of the biggest things is simply that I allowed myself to become lazy.

It's true.

It is easy to know what we should be doing, it's another to actually do them.

Over the last year I began to feel justified somehow in skipping out on the work that needed to be done so I could do something easier or more fun instead.

I am not saying that we need to wear ourselves down or never take time off to relax.

Heaven knows I'm all about a night out, a good book, a fun movie, and a giant bag of chocolate.

But there is a big difference between taking a break and a breather, and simply not doing.

(This is the section where I droned on and on about this topic in great detail, then I deleted it all. You're welcome.)

Look at a day when you are supremely satisfied at the end. It's not a day when you lounge around doing nothing; it's a day you've had everything to do and you've done it.” ― Margaret Thatcher


As I have made a bit more effort to just... do and be, the atmosphere in our home has shifted a bit.

But this time for the better.

Possibly in part because I am feeling better about me.


Claira making her first peanut butter and jelly sandwich. She wouldn't let me help.




Jelly everywhere people.  Seriously, E.V.E.R.Y.W.H.E.R.E. But she was so proud. 


We woke up this morning to snow.

Jackson was fascinated by it.

Even though we were dealing with the craziness of the morning and trying to get Alayna and Jacob ready for school, I took him out into it and he was down-right enthralled.

I may despise the icky white stuff, but he was loving it!

After a while I took him back into the house where he instantly demanded to be taken back out again.

It was only then I remembered to try and capture the moment.

I told Savannah to grab the camera and snap a few shots of Jackson despite the fact that I had serious bed head and bad slept in make-up going on.

I may have missed out on the original smiles, but not his fascination.




I want to be like Jackson when I grow up and find joy in all the little things.

"Happiness is not a destination, it is a journey."


November 4, 2014

Halloween is OVER! *insert awkward happy dance*



November 1st is my favorite day of the year.

The End.


I'm kidding!

Kind of.



I finally threw away last year's candy on Halloween night.

True story.

There was quite a bit of it left too.

I'm not sure if I should feel proud or ashamed.


I tried to look up last year's Halloween post because I was curious about what I has written. To my mortification I discovered that while I had edited all the photos and started writing the post, I never actually finished it, and therefore never published it.

Horrified, I looked up my post from 2012 only to realize that Joseph, Jacob, and Alayna have been wearing the same costumes for the last three years! Well, I guess Jacob was Batman last year, but still!

Before you start throwing your rotting Jack-o-lanterns at me, I will have you know that I offered to find different costumes for them.

No one wanted a different one.

I was even about to take Joseph over to a friend's house, who graciously offered to let us borrow one of their many extras, to pick out a different costume.

He didn't want to.

He sorta loves his ninja outfit.

Kind of.

Just a little.

In an "no one is allowed to touch it" sort of way.

But he barely fit into it this year.

Next year's not going to work out so well




Since Savannah didn't want to wear the costume I had found for her last year, we pulled out a prom dress that a friend had given to her and just made stuff up.

'Cause that's how I roll.


Alayna was a witch... again.


I had borrowed a Tinker Bell costume from my neighbor for Claira. 

At fist she was excited and wore it around the house.

But when it came down to it, she didn't want to wear it. So we just made stuff up for her too.


I think part of the reason the boys love these costumes so much are the swords.

Best/worst investment I ever made.

Seriously, I can't tell you how many hours of fun and buckets of tears have stemmed from sword duels fought though out the year.

Jacob was Batman at school. But for trick-or-treating, he wanted to carry his sword.



Since I didn't have anything for Jackson, my neighbor let me borrow a costume.

There was a super adorable Peter Pan outfit that I almost went with.

But as soon as I saw the superman, I was hooked.


So much nostalgia.


He will always be Superman so me.



Our day went pretty much like any other year.

Trick-or-Treating over by Daddy's workplace, come home and dump the contents from the full buckets into plastic sacks, scarf down a quick dinner, then head out again for the neighborhood Trunk-or-Treat.

That's why I have to take pictures beforehand.

It's far too difficult to get them during that raging dash of collecting as much bounty as possible by sugar-crazed little people.

So I tried to get plenty before we left.




Claira soooooooooooooo did not appreciate Jackson confiscating her crown.

Needless to say, after the fire-breathing dragon known as a toddler was unleashed, pictures were over.

The kids had a grand time.



I tell myself not to eat all the good candy out of the kid's Halloween bags.

Myself is not listening.

October 30, 2014

Keeping It Real


*gasp* Another post?

Yup.

And I'm pretty sure that was a pig that just flew by my window.


Ugh. *flopping onto couch, flinging arm over face*

I suck at this parenting thing.

Seriously.

This week has been down-right barbaric.

Epic fail.

I have been trying so hard too, you know?

Then... *poof!*

I respond with reaction instead of action.

*sigh* I am getting really good at apologizing to my children.

We have so much fun and then... it's bedtime. (or dinnertime, or chore time, or... well you know what I mean)

Bedtime it evil.

And teeth brushing is torture.

Just saying.



Okay fine, not ALWAYS.

But someone has poisoned our water with a large dose of cranky and some extra strong selective hearing.

I think my kids are deaf to my voice.

Maybe I should try another language.

Russian perhaps?

Our living room has become a communal dumping ground for all things child related.

There must be a sign with an open invite somewhere only children can read.

The laundry hampers appear to be allergic to dirty laundry and simply regurgitate them all over the bedroom floors.

Why else would there be a perfectly good, empty laundry basket two feet away from a dozen items of dirty clothes?

Oh, and the screaming in anger at the top of your lungs in the store?

So got that covered.

My toddler is an expert.


Just... just.........


You know?


My children are superbly awesome. Can't imagine our family without a single one.

But for the love, did they have to leave a bag of bread in the bathroom?


And now, here is a picture of us all smiling. (okay, except Jackson)

Just because.

Family Photo from July taken by my sister! www.facebook.com/RRejoiceGPhotograph

October 28, 2014

Subject Whiplash

I apologize in advance if jumping from subject to subject gives you whiplash.

But this is what happens when you are so far behind in your writing that you just don't even know what to do about it.

So you mesh it all together into organized chaos.

Kind of like how dinner time is.

Except dinner doesn't always have the organized part.

Anyhow....



Halloween is this week. (just call me Captain Obvious)

I'm pretty sure this is the first year in the history of my motherhood that I have failed to decorate for fall.

I even made cute decorations for a church activity that I was excited to have out and about my house.


Sadly they are still sitting in a box in my bedroom. (minus the candy)

I'm not entirely sure why. (the decorations, not the candy)

Deep down I kind of wanted to hit some weird cleaning mania that comes every now and then where I go all super cleaning ninja crazy and whip this place back into shape! THEN I would decorate.

Which totally explains why everything is still in boxes.

And I seriously need to mop my floor.


I did however buy trick-or-treating candy early this year! Oh ya, I was going to be SOOO on top of that.

I should have known better than to get chocolate though.

I uh... need to get more candy now. Eh hem.

I am just incredibly grateful that my children are completely satisfied with thrown together, hodge-podge costumes, or hand me downs that they have worn before in years past.

Call me the Wicked Witch (okay, don't really) but I'm not the cool mom that comes up with totally awesome costumes.

And none of my kids have ever really begged to be anything in particular.

So we just... wing it.

Part of the reason I have not delved into the world of super crazy cleaning ninja, is because I have been crafting away. I have discovered that I really love making photography props! So fun!

And my girls LOOOVE to model them for me.

Plus it's just fun taking pictures of them.




And now for a complete change in subject,  I snapped these pictures at the park a couple weeks ago.

It was a simply gorgeous fall day (which means it was warm) so we spent the afternoon taking up every single swing at the park.



video

Luckily there weren't too many people there so we didn't get the stinky eye from anyone.

There's a first for everything.



Now that all the craziness with Jackson and Joseph have calmed down, I have been a bit on pins and needles, waiting for the next "big bad thing" to happen.

You know?

Well, maybe it's not a "big thing", but I have had some bodily pain inflicted on me in the last couple weeks.

It all started with a friendly chat with Hubby in the kitchen on his lunch break.

There I was completely relaxed, leaning back against the counter with my feet out in front of me, when Hubby walks by and accidentally mutilated my big toe.

You know, the whole, shoe-hitting-toenail thing. Hit, crunch, crackle, snap... blood, pain, tears.

Okay okay, so it wasn't THAT bad. He didn't take the whole toe nail off or anything, but youch it hurt!

Poor guy was feeling sooo bad about it.

I should have asked for money in that moment.

Just kidding. 

Kind of.

But what can I say? I'm the one who, the next day, managed to drop a heavy, wood kitchen table insert into her nose.

Ya. I know, it sounds weird.

But I am an expert klutz. It takes real skill to do something like that.

I had put the two table inserts on the floor. Later I picked one up and leaned it against the counter. Then I stepped to the end of the second one, bent down to pick it up, and the next thing I know the first piece came slamming down into my face.

Seriously, I thought my face exploded.

Did I break or fracture it? No idea. I didn't bother seeing a doctor for a few reasons.

One, it barely bled. I thought that was weird, but it must have been because it hit right on the hardest part of the bone (Or something. I'm just making up reasons).

Two, it was a straight on hit so it's not like it popped sideways or anything. I figured they would just say something like, "Yup! You cracked it good! Nothing we can do. Here's your bill!"

Three, I'm just SO tired of medical bills.

Anyhow, here is a picture almost a week later.

At least I don't look like a Klingon fresh off the Star Ship Enterprise anymore.

Small blessings.


I actually took this "selfie" (I feel completely weird using that word) to show off my new hairstyle.

I've never had bangs in my life so it was kind of a big deal for me.

But selfies are weird. And uncomfortable to take.

Just down-right awkward, you know what I'm saying?

You know what? Just forget I ever used the word "selfie".

I promise to never say it again.



And now for something fun to end with.

We had full on tackle daddy episode the other night. The kids were having a blast, laughing and screaming like crazy!

At least it was good screaming.

You know, NOT the tear filled kind.

Yes, it does happen.


October 14, 2014

A Little Bit of Life


You know, one would think after having a horrendous cough for a week that at the very least, a nice set of six-pack abs would be the reward for all that core toning.

Alas, it is not so.

*sigh* All that unintentional hard work for nothing.

Is it possible to pull a muscle from coughing? Because I swear it felt like I did, right at the base of my rib cage....

Anyhow, it's nice to be able to talk again without having to repeat what I said six or seven times before I am understood through all the coughing.

My kids were starting to give me blank stares every time I tried to talk to them.

~~~~~

Okay, so I wrote the above about a week ago when I started this post.

I assure you that I have spent a good week blissfully cough-free.

Why did I leave in this post you ask?

Because I'm still miffed about the abs thing....


Moving on.


Life in our household has had it's share of your everyday ups and downs.

It's been loud, and messy, and good, and fun, and hard, and crazy. Lots of fighting, Lots of laughs.

You know, the usual.

Homeschooling is going remarkably well.

Not that there haven't been days that have been, eh hem, rough. (to say the least *mumbled quietly under my breath... lovingly of course*)

Like when Joseph had to this science project. We had been discussing the importance of diagrams in science.


You would have thought I had just asked him to go weed the garden with a fork and cuts all the grass in the yard with scissors by the way he was moaning and carrying on about it.

Now he is so dang proud of it it's been hanging up in our kitchen for almost two weeks!

One of these days he'll let me take it down.

Maybe.

Joseph's chorea is barely noticeable these unless you knew to look for it. Then you'd see it. But he is doing amazing.

I encouraged him to try painting the other day. He actually seemed to enjoy it instead of being so frustrated with the inability to hold the brush or to control his movements enough to do it.

It's awesome.


Savannah is also doing well with homeschooling and does a lot of this when she has completed her work.



Can't imagine where she gets it from!

Eh hem... *glancing around suspiciously then sneaking a bit reading in while typing this post at the same time*




Alayna and Claira decided a while back that since I am being too slow at putting up my Fall and Halloween decorations, they would take matters into their own hands and decorate their bedroom.





The dried up leaves have been there long enough that most of them have been knocked off or crushed, leaving the stems still taped to the walls and ceiling.

True story.



Jacob is seven. 


I've decided that seven is a reeeeeeeally hard boy age.

The end.



Jackson is just... awesome.

Everyone in the family down-right adores him and he is, quite literally at times, smothered with love.




It's hard not to really. He just has the best little personality one could ask for in an eleven month old.


I am so not looking forward to when he turns seven.

Just sayin'.


But my favorite of all favorite things that he does right now is, whenever we gather for family prayer and the kids all fold their arms, so does he!

Seriously, I can't explain it. It's just simply the cutest thing ever.

Be still my heart. I love it so much.


Well that and, every time he does anything that seems to get more attention than usual, he just tries to do it over and over and over again.

Like sneezing or coughing.

Okay, so maybe it's not such a fun thing when he starts throwing food on the floor and all the kids start telling him no. The attention simply means, more food on the floor.


In fact, I'm pretty sure that's banana stuck to my foot right now....
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