Friday, July 27, 2007

Swimming Lessons

Lately, I have been in a major cooking rut. OK, maybe the truth is something closer to a life rut!My nose barely above water, as I tread for the longest time. Not really getting anywhere but wore out and cranky. My days off,just being me, a lovely visit with a dear friend, an encouraging conversation with an emerging kindred spirit, realization of the awesome community of women surrounding me and a boost in the arm (yesterday) that these kids are my calling . . . these things have me swimming again. I am not going for the full out around the world swim but I am going to try and make it across the lake. When I am down , in a rut, the first thing to go is cooking. My dear J doesn't mind so much but a few of the older children have a hard time eating frozen foods. I fear the younger ones will come to think of me cooking as a special treat! Today I was feeling mighty fine and decided to test the waters in the kitchen. I pulled out two of my favorite cookbooks and started in with some help from my kitchen side kick. She resembles the Red Hen quite a bit, in that she is really into tasting everything and not so into the helping part. Lots of people love the Moosewood cookbooks for all their yummy vegetarian recipes. In our house we do have a couple favorite entrees and salads but the most used sections of my Moosewood cookbooks are the deserts! So we whipped up some blueberry muffins. Trust me these count as a desert, my J compares the batter to cookie dough. We also made brownies but I do not have a picture of those. They were eaten right out of the pan. And there is nothing left to take a picture of except contented tummies! It feels grand to be swimming along again. Very grand indeed.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

A Day in Pictures

Nine children, ages 1 to 11 yrs, six of whom were six and under!

A joyful song

New artwork to display

Eating and eating and some more eating

Alot of silliness

Disney World syndrome

Snack anyone?

Oh yeah, a little of this.

Why buy toys?

Crafting, of course!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

I Am Not Alone Part 2

This summer God has impressed on me how I am not alone. I have feared being "alone" for as long as I can remember. Some would say I am an extremely extroverted person. I think I am fueled by my desire to belong. This desire led to some pretty unhealthy relationships. (think boys . . .too many boys) As a young mother and then a young bride,(yes, in that order. Not a recommended strategy)I felt very alone. In the beginning, I was sure God had simply abandoned me. I quickly realized He wanted me all to Himself for awhile.

Then I began to pray for a friend. I desperately needed someone authentic. God slowly brought the most amazing women into my life. There was not just one authentic friend but several! This past summer as I have begun to disciple and befriend some younger girls, the Lord has brought home just how sweet the friendships I have are.

I know many ladies struggle with not having that authentic friend. My suggestion to you would be to pray and step out on a limb and be real yourself. On so many levels we cover ourselves up and think everyone else is doing a better job at (insert something you are insecure about here) than you. Oh my!!! What a lie. A really big lie. A really, really ginormous lie! A lot of these thoughts were prompted by a late night conversation with one of the authentic friends in my life. She had been thinking on all this after having heard ,speaker and author Todd Wilson, at a home school conference.She passed on to me a gem of a book. Go now and run out (well, run to the computer) and buy this book!!!! Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe. Even if you are not a homeschooling mom, or not a mom but a women who breathes air on this earth . . . buy it!!!! His gems apply to us all.

Oh, all the pictures? My piles of WIP. I know I am not alone in these!

Monday, July 23, 2007

I Am Not Alone

She's making them and so are these folks!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

I Am Addicted

My plan for my mom's day out this week was to visit my lovely (single) sister in Gainesville. I decided I needed a new shirt to wear and while I was at it, why not two? This is the same pattern (from dear Wendy:) that I made before. This time I squared off the neckline a bit, omitted the elastic in the arms and used a knit. I also cut a sharper curve on the seams. I think this helped deal with the prego look.

The color in this photo is very washed out. Argh! The knit is actually a bright, cheery yellow that screams summer. I also included a button in the middle. I am sure my husband is wondering if I made the shirt just to show off the button. I certainly spent enough time picking out just the right one.

And while in Gainesville, I worked on personalizing my second shirt, drank coffee and popped in at my sister's favorite thrift store. And lookie, lookie:

Yahoo! And totally within my limit. My lovely sister has hard a rough go of it this past year. I am proud of her. She is strong and beautiful. I am blessed to have her in my life and I plan to live it up while she is close again. Because you never really know where she will go.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Adopted Cousins

J(aka hubby) and I have one sibling each. J's brother and sister-in-law have chosen not to have children. My sister would like children but is still waiting for Mr.Right. (We are taking applications! Single, stable males between 25 and 35 with a job they love who won't mind a woman who loves her work, too can email me:) So, we have no cousins. The Lord has blessed us with special friendships. We have some "adopted" cousins who live close by and a few we have to travel a little farther to see. We visited with our cousins in Orlando this past weekend. A blast was had by all! They have 3 boys and 2 girls. The ages are a perfect match up. J and I love their parents dearly and we all agree on what a good time is. So while the grownups talked and talked and talked and talked talked . . .

Cousins swam in the pool:



Played games:

Old Friendships Refreshed:

And a New One Formed:

Life is hard sometimes and it is so sweet to have friends to share the road!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

OK this blog is getting depressing!

I just looked over the last couple of posts and they make me sound a tad bit like Eeyore. Actually, I am a making-lemonade-out-of-lemons kinda' girl. The only way to survive this crazy roller coaster ride called motherhood is to laugh-ALOT!This little diddy had me and the kiddos rolling on the floor laughing. Though all of my children thought they could have left the dad out of this song. The reason? "Dad just really likes coffee. You are the one who NEEDS it!" Har-har!

This guy is hysterical. You can check out more videos at YouTube or purchase a CD for your very own at Ralph's World.

What a Week!

We had a lovely fourth of July, with the hubby being off from work for 5 days. Upon returning, some of the kids promptly came down with a cold. Then three of them showed up crusty eyed one morning. Yep, it's pink eye! Right now we have it contained to three of them and everyone's hands will soon be raw from all the hand washing I am making them do! Be back tomorrow with pictures from our trip, a report on my mom's day out, a new shirt and some new-to-me shoes!!!! I myself, am in the middle of a Servant Tantrum. It looks something like this:

There are cures for this state of being:
*coffee with a friend
*a good old fashioned cry
*a long shower
*a foot massage
*mindless, fun movie
*extra time in the Word with journal writing
*dancing and singing loudly while wearing iPod around house

These are just a few of my favorites. I have already stolen a few moments with my journal while laying down with a sick child tonight. I wrote TWO whole pages!!! I think I will be hitting my husband up for a foot rub and a mindless movie when he gets home.What do you do to tame the Servant Tantrum?

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

The Sun'll Come Out Tomorrow . . .

Today was much better. My mom has the summer off and has offered to watch the kiddos every Tuesday.I had really wanted to go to the beach but it poured rain today. So I went to my favorite bookstore. I love walking through bookstores. I find it very soothing. Then I met my hubby for lunch. It wasn't anything fancy but I did get to sit across from him and eat the whole meal without getting up!!! And we did finish a couple of complete sentences. I stopped off at PetSmart to buy food and other necessary things for all the critters in our household. Introducing them all would require a separate post. There are eight of them. Off to Jo Ann's, where I looked through every page of every pattern catalog they had!! Ya-hoo. Wendy (don't ya' love how we are on a first name basis)has two new patterns out. And all the pattern companies have a few retro patterns. I really like this Butterick pattern. Not sure how practical it is for a day with six kiddos but still . . .a girl can dream. I rounded up my day with a quick stop at the grocery store and the library. I arrived home to kids fed and ready for bed. YOU ROCK, MOM!!!! Well, for the three people who read this blog and need to know, I will be out of town for the next four days. Have a wonderful fourth of July!!!

Monday, July 2, 2007

Look at the Cute Kitten!

This is a lovely, sweet picture of my oldest daughter's cat. Let's all admire him and think cute thoughts. That way we won't have to discuss:
*no milk for my coffee this morning
*a really yucky stomach bug hanging on
*how many hours of Webkinz my children played
*how many episodes of The Waltons we watched
*the number of times I lost my cool today and ended up sounding very much like my 4 year old
*that my 4 year old NEVER got dressed today
*I lost a VERY important phone number
*all of the laundry is clean and we still can't find a bathing suit someone needs tomorrow
*me blowing up at my husband when he arrived home today
*the chocolate bar I am about to go eat