Wednesday, September 12, 2012

small victories.

"Made it to Tuesday!"  my friend texted me yesterday.

I smiled because I was really feeling that text. 

Making it to Tuesday seems almost laughable doesn't it?
How can we not make it to a Tuesday?  it's only the 3rd day of the week,  how hard can it be?

Sometimes Monday is such a Monday, that Tuesday's arrival is a thing of victory!

"Made it to Tuesday!"
It's not nearly as accomplished as the victorious shout,  "TGIF !!!"
...but, at times it sure feels like it.

It's that time of year where I have to right my attitude rather often.
School is back in session,  and with it comes all the busy.

The big irony of my life is this...

It annoys me.  Unlike some,  I don't thrive on chaos,  but secretly wish I did. 
I tend to lose function (and graciousness) right at the height of the busyness.
It's not a great scene.

After those moments I am always left with this:  a pile of crying kids,  sky high laundry,  incomplete homework.   Oh, and let's just throw in a completely spilled 2L of orange soda,  Dan working out of town and a teething toddler for good measure.

How do I reconcile my aversion to busyness with the reality that I have 5 kids going in 5 different directions?  I ask myself that question quite often because wishing my life was slower paced,  more home based and less minivan occupied is really not going to help matters.   I must take actions to keep myself from the quicksand of grumbling discontent.  

This week's action:  ATTITUDE of GRATITUDE
with a rambling  manifesto  prayer...

How can I not completely bust open with thankfulness for all that God has given me?  Does sticky orange soda ALL OVER EVERYWHERE really amount to anything when compared to the 5 healthy, funny, naughty, unique kids that spilled it?

NO.   Our kids are gifts.  Every moment that I cart them around, wipe their butts,  fold their laundry, make their sandwiches,  give them tylenol,  cheer them on, and put them to bed is a gift of a life with them.
Yes,  of course I will feel like I am going off the rails from time to time but, Lord,  help me not to lose perspective for too long.  
God,  speak to me when I can't seem to do one more math problem or tackle the dishwasher for the millioneth time   Remind me Lord, that these moments are purposeful, sacred.   
YOU have called me to them.

During it all help me celebrate the small victories,  see the wins,  may they stimulate my day and my attitude so I know just how precious this life is.   

May I always thank you, Lord for these days... even the Mondays.

hope to work through and write about other intentional actions I can take to be the Momma I want to be.
but don't hold your breath...
I am a slow learner.

thanks for the inspirational text, friend-  truly.

The Steadfast Love of the Lord Never Ceases,
His Mercies Never Come to an End.
They are New Every Morning,
New Every Morning.
Great is Thy Faithfulness, Oh Lord.
Great is Thy Faithfulness!

Monday, September 03, 2012

good times. noodle salad.

So,  here I am at the end of another summer season with my thoughts and photo archives bursting at the seams.   We had more than enough activity to fill our days and nights and weekends.  I am thankful for this.  It made the long days and nights with Dan working away more bearable and we created memories I hope the kids will hold onto.

Here at the blog my tendency is to photo dump in an attempt to bring it up to date.  Let's call it...


Sunday, September 02, 2012


I'll see you again in 15 years,  I told him.

It may just be that long, or longer before we are able to spend 8 days alone again.
Back in March while Dan worked out of state,  we planned a trip to celebrate our 15 year anniversary.

It kind of felt like one of those once in a lifetime vacations,  and if that's true,  we are even more grateful for it.

I'll be honest.  Going into the trip I questioned 3 things:

Was the trip too long?

Would I miss the kids too much?

Would we remember how to be "just the two of us"?

The first day in we were quite tired from all the traveling so eating and sleeping took precedence.  No time to worry about my 3 main concerns,   we turned off the alarm and slept for what felt like a week.

Fully refreshed,  the next couple days went lazily by.   The surreal life is an accurate description to what we experienced on that cruise.   No alarms.  No kids.  No work.  No schedule.  No cooking.  No cleaning. No crying. No employees.  No pressure.  No stress.

I warned Dan for a few weeks prior that I had stored up many a conversation for the cruise.  One thing that we don't have the luxury of at home is finding a great amount of time to just sit and talk about things.  Things meaning more than our usual conversations about time he will be home from work and what kid needs what, where and how.

The cool thing about being away for 8 days is that you have all the time in the world to talk about the future,  our family, our dreams,  our struggles, our church, work,  anything and everything.   The cool thing is that on the cruise there were no distractions except if you count the waiter bringing me a bahama mama.

Question 1 answered.  8 days was not too long.  It probably took me that long to get all my words out.
Poor Dan.

Question 2.  Would I miss the kids too much?   We have been on trips before a few times in the first 15 and it seemed like those vacations found me homesick at some point.   I have to admit... not this time.   I love my children dearly,  no surprise there, but being away from them was refreshing!   Big surprise there!   I knew they were having a wonderful time with Grandmas and Grandpas so I cruised that week free as a bird!   No diapers to buy,  no minivan to drive,  no fights to break up.

Question 3.   Would we remember how to be "just the two of us?"
Well, this one was a bit more interesting.   Since the year 2000 we've been Mom and Dad...not as much Dan and Chelle.    I worried that we might stare at each other blankly and think... "who are you?"

Did I ever mention that I probably worry too much?

With dinners and shows and beaches, and pools, people watching and shopping, Oh, and how can I forget- Dan's slight Bingo obsession...
We had more than enough to do remind us that we are capable of fun outside of our parental roles.

I miss that cruise.  These days, it feels like it was just a dream.  In some ways it kind of was.

I'll see you again in 15 years, Dan.

Until then,  thank you for a lovely, precious time.  We will always have that moment on the top deck.  Remember?  When we cruised out of the port into the sunset and I fell asleep on your shoulder?   You may have thought it was the Benydryl I took for my heat rash  that made me so drowsy, but really-- it was one of the most contented,  peaceful moments of my life and I could just rest next to my love.

a few pix of the trip...

  Oops.  looks like someone forgot to pack black socks.   

 All fancied up for dinner.
 Loving the Sun!  a little too much actually according to my case of sun poisoning. 
that was unfortunate!
 Just about won us 5000 in Bingo!  but instead lost 40 bucks in 20 minutes.

 He couldn't wait to plunge into that clear water in Tortola.

 "hey, Hon.  let me take a picture of you by the ocean."

 Breakfast is served!   I love me some room service.  

 On May 23, 2012  officially our 15th Anniversary.
again..." Hey Hon,  let me take a picture of you by the ocean."

And one last little funny...
Dan would NOT let me purchase any of the posed photos that they take of you on the cruise.  
He did however try to video tape me checking out the proofs in the photo gallery.  
That is... before he was busted.