thoughts on daily life within our family of SIX....each child in her own phase of childhood....

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sunday, December 14, 2008

A month

A month since my last post. And still life isn't slowing down enough to reflect much on paper, I mean, screen. But I thought that I could at least post a couple of my favorite pictures. Be sort of a photojournalist for today. Because, of course, I still take pictures like crazy.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

MOPS convention...part two!

So the first night of convention ended in a great way. Go Fish, a band that I highly recommend for Christian music that you and your kiddos will both enjoy, hyped us up and made us laugh with "The Mom Song" and "It's Hard to Be Cool in a Minivan", and then they sent us off to our rooms with "Jammies". (You've got to get that song! Puts a little excitement into bedtime!) I brought home a couple of their CDs (Snazzy and Party Like a Preschooler), and they instantly became my children's favorites! (Scroll down to find these songs, click and laugh!)

The next morning started off with a bang. More amazing mamas who made it through difficult times by holding tight to God's hand--and friends at MOPS. I started each session determined that I wouldn't need any tissues, but at some time during each one, my eyes watered and my plans were foiled again! The speakers and moms challenged me to be the best mom that I could be and to stop being so hard on myself!

More amazing music was sprinkled throughout the of my favorites in Christian music--Jaci Velasquez and her husband (Salvadore) performed. Jaci has such a powerful and amazing voice. Both of them were just excellent and very moving.

One of the high points of the conference for me was this performance.
This is Plumb, and if you listen to Christian radio at all--or probably pop, too--I'm sure that you've been moved by her song, "In My Arms" This, of course, is who I was thinking about when I asked if you knew who I was standing with.

Now, I'm sorry if I'm sounding like a commercial here, but I have to tell you that I was just really thrown by the quaality of the music, the program and by the big names that this convention served to all of us moms. I was really not expecting this at all, and I was truly overwhelmed.

Tonight's post must end here, but I promise you another post tomorrow that is less of a commercial but no less full of big (and I mean BIG) names and surprises. See you tomorrow!

Friday, November 14, 2008

MOPS convention

As I've been reading through previous posts and thinking about posts that are still swimming around in my head, I realize that there are several times that I've told you there would be a part two to a post or that more would be coming. Here's my first attempt to catch up! This post started in early October, and it's goes with this teaser.
I just got back from the MOPS convention in Grapevine, TX, and it was absolutely amazing! If you ever get the chance to go, don't think about it, just pack your little bags and go! This rousing endorsement comes from a mama who is never away from her kiddos overnight (okay, my big girl goes to Mawmaw's or Mimi's about once a year).

When it came to leaving, I worried. I fretted. To be honest with you, I went because a week or so before I had to give my answer, the little guy would not go to Daddy on several occasions. I don't know if Daddy got it, but I felt like the kiddos needed some one-on-one with him.

So on Thursday morning, four days after we got back into town from our "hurrication", I got out of the way. I packed my bags and got myself on that church bus by 9:30, and off we went.

Now, if you know me outside of blogland, you know that I am not the world's most outgoing person. In a group, a little shy, a little reserved (okay, sometimes more than a little)...that's me. Little did I know that this convention was going to speak directly to that part of me. That fear part of me. That paralyzing, I'm not good enough part of me (ahem...did I mention that today is "let it all hang out day"?).

Fear is an awful thing. Not a virtue. When I think of all the good gifts that God has given out, fear is nowhere on that list. Common sense, in, if I jump off of this bridge, I probably will not live to see another day. That kind of healthy fear...I would say that's a good thing!

But fear that keeps moms from talking to other moms, women from talking to other women, girls in grade school from talking to other girls in grade school, that kind of fear is an opportunity-stealer, a life-thief, really. It's the kind of fear that tells you that the other mom will think that you don't care about your child because you didn't breastfeed (or not for long enough) or in my case that you did breastfeed, but in their opinion, for way too long.

So, as I said, this convention was coming right for that part of me, and I didn't even have a clue. I thought I was just...getting out of the way.

The bus ride was really, um, cozy. For this shy girl. We were blessed with transportation on the school's little bus all the way up there. It was really a blessing not to have to drive, but it meant that we all had to sit very close together and, you know, make conversation. For several hours.

But again, a blessing. I was forced to think of things to say to these other mamas about things that had never come up at our tables at MOPS. And I had a chance to listen to who these other mamas were.

My seat mate, an amazing mom who has four children by birth and two adopted children (she's waiting to go get the third!) talked a lot about adoption--a subject that is newly interesting to the hubby and I. Several of us talked about the current political happenings.

Then we got to the hotel. The buzz of mommy adreneline all around--it was really a sight! Hundreds of mamas chatted in the lobby, in the coffee shop, in front of the fireplace, in the bar, up and down the halls, on the patio, everywhere that you could think of. I couldn't help but laugh when I saw a stray man here or there...

And then the convention started. Five thousand mamas. Five thousand missionaries to their own families, to their own MOPS groups, to other mamas in their communities. Wow. That's all I can say. Wow.

Throughout the weekend, we were inspired by other ordinary mamas whose lives and families had been changed through the ministry of MOPS. Mamas who then went on to be a part of the change in other mamas' lives. It was powerful. Each speaker was wonderfully polished yet very open in her presentation.

That first night, I heard what I already knew but really needed to be reminded of--God knew what He was doing when He put each of my babies in my arms. He knew my imperfections, and He still put them in my arms. I really needed to hear that. Because I love these babies more than I could have ever imagined. And sometimes I think that I'm not half the mama that lives next door (figuratively speaking!).

And then one of the speakers said, "I used to think that God gave me these children mainly so I could shape them to be more like Jesus. And then, I realized that He gave me these children so they could shape me to be more like Jesus." Yeah.

Now, I promise you, there really is more to come on this post! I'm gonna' get right to work on it. Check back tomorrow, and you'll see it here. Here. From my mouth, uh, fingers, to your eyes. Tomorrow. See you then!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Insect Body Parts

Little Sunshine is learning about insects. While studying for her test, I ask her to name the three body parts. Instantly, like she's known them forever, she rattles off, "head, abdomen and thyroid!"

Yep, I think she's getting me confused with an insect. It's easy to confuse, really. I had part of my thorax--I mean thyroid--removed about a year ago.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Piles of Laundry and Fingers that Can't Keep Up

Okay, I realize that I am so very behind on blogging. I mean, I've had such joyous moments that I have thought posts for. You know, I just haven't been able to bring my thoughts to the keyboard. Time is running away from me like it was working for a prize or somethin'!

Seriously, I've got posts up here <pointing to the noggin> from 2 months ago! But, here I sit with a handful of minutes a couple of pieces of news that I just had to put down.

One...we're anxiously awaiting the arrival of this:

Well, not that one exactly. You know, ours is way cuter. But from the same place. Illinois. She's flying in from Illinois as a gift for our little girly. Said girly lost her 17 year old doggy this summer (see--there's another post still floating around up there!). Even tonight, she asked if we would pray for Georgie.

I absolutely cannot wait to see my sweet girl's face when she realizes that the gift in the box (can we make that happen?) is for her. And when she sees what it is? Whoa. Can't wait. Can't wait, can't wait, can't wait. Daddy, big sister and I are having a blast anticipating her excitement.

And in other news.....that big sister. I think of her as perpetually a "tween". But without the make-up, the girly stuff, etc., etc. Tonight, she pulled me into the bathroom where we could be alone. Then she asked, "What do you do when a boy likes you, but you like him as just a friend?" Now, God, I was really not ready for that today. But, I guess you knew that I'd never be.

I am blessed that she came to me to talk about such a thing. Because, frankly, as she flatly stated, "a lot of girls wouldn't talk to their parents about this." Thank you, God. This girl who seems to tune out so much of what I say...Thank you, God.

So, as usual, life happens faster than I can type. And faster than I can fold that day's laundry or wash that day's dishes. Hopefully I'll be back to more regular posting soon. But for now, sleep is calling. And...well, and a couch full of laundry to fold.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

All in fun....brotherly love...

For more Wordless Wednesday posts, visit here and here.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

It's My Bloggy Birthday!!!!!!

It's my first bloggy birthday! It probably couldn't have come at a crazier blogging time what with hurricanes and the catch up from all of that, but birthdays just come, ready or not, right?

I must say that my entrance into blogging has alternated between inspiration, reflection and addiction. I had to step away for a little while when it became all-consuming...I mean, I do have a life outside of blogging, and I really want to live that life with every part of me. At those times when I stepped away, I questioned why I was even doing this. Wasn't it just a time-waster?

But then I'd catch a glimpse of three journals sitting beside my scrapbooks...all of them neglected. Who has the time to get out all of those supplies (although I really heart all those supplies!) and to keep up with it all? My goal of writing journals to each of my children was being trampled by thirty little toes (and twenty bigger ones) living out their daily lives.

But is my journal to my children--and to my husband and myself. The record of our life together, of the incidentals that we forget along the way. I envision my children as adults raising their own families with books of these journal entries and pictures--remembering what it was like, being encouraged when they think they are the only ones who have lived through these things, realizing how much their mama and daddy loved them in the details.

And reading your blogs has provided me with great inspiration for doing my job better...for being a mom who first seeks the Lord, and then strives to be the best wife and mom that I personally can be. You have tickled my funny bone (sometimes 'til I couldn't catch my breath), made me cry, and encouraged me to step up more fully. Thank you.

So in honor of my first bloggy birthday, I want to recognize a few blogs that I read often and have really inspired me. And I have this little gift for you....

4 Little Men and Girly Twins
Baby Tunnel Exodus
Chaotic Adventures
It's Almost Naptime
Meet Me In the Clubhouse
My Charming Kids
Notes on a Napkin
Our Little Savages
The Queen B

If I haven't been reading yours, leave me a comment, and I'll definitely stop by! And if you're just lurking, leave a comment. And if you here for the first time, leave a comment. In other words, leave a comment! I'll consider it a goody bag from my own birthday party!

Thing That I Wonder...

Why are my toes magnets for my children's shoe-wearing feet?

Why is an iced tea from McDonald's so much better than iced tea that I make at home?

When do we teach the little guy to stand instead of sit? (You know, we're sort
of potty training.)

How many children would be enough?

Why do children love to rub and touch public trash cans, public restroom walls, the hand rail on the entrance ramp at the library?

Why is raunchy, racy viewing so prevalent on television? Why on the Disney
Channel? Why on ABC Family? Why is the entertainment industry pursuing our
children so vigorously? (Okay, I'll move on.)

Why is it easier to be critical than it is to be positive?

Why don't my children love to go to bed ('cause I sure do!)?

Why do 12-year-olds think that they suddenly have all the answers?

What did my husband and I do with all of our time before we had children?

How can I teach a spirit of gratefulness in an ungrateful world?

What happened to patience?

How can we live more simply?

Why are there hungry children?

Why did I wait until I became a mom to appreciate the sacrifices that my parents made for me?

Will my children know the sacrifices that we've made for them?

Does it matter?

Monday, October 6, 2008

A River of My Thoughts Ran Through It All...

And yet I have been unable to get back to posting about any of it. But, it's coming! Over the past couple of weeks, we've had some amazing times, not the least of which was ....
Do you know this girl? This picture was part of an amazing weekend, and I'll be sure to post about it just as soon as I can catch a few zzzzz's and situate my kiddos!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

We will always remember....

Thanks for visiting! For more Wordless Wednesday participants, go here.

Monday, September 15, 2008


My children are put to bed--Laura, Mary and Kerry. You know--Ingalls.

This is our second day without electricity, and as we said our prayers tonight, the big sister said, "I don't know whether to pray for electricity or not. I like playing 'Little House on the Prairie'...but it would be kinda'nice to have a/c."

Hurricane Ike paid us a memorable visit. But along with downed trees, a saggy, "broken" ceiling and some roof trouble, Ike packed some blessings in his bag. Blessings much bigger than any trouble that he brought to our family. Ike took out our electricity, and along with that, many of our distractions that sometimes keep us from being together even when we are together.

At no time over the past couple of days have we tried to talk to each other over the din of the evening news--or even over the background noise of "Little House on the Prairie". Mom and Dad have not been distracted by checking e-mail or blogging (gasp!). We haven't been rushing to answer phones...our land line has been completely down, and we've only had sporadic service on our cells.

We've been out in the yard today--cleaning up together. I don't think we sat on the couch once. And we even made it to church this morning where the priest and deacon led parishioners in worship in a very dim sanctuary--lit only by candles (and I suspected a flashlight).

Tonight at bedtime, the kids and I played guessing games about what the light from the flashlight looked like on the ceiling. Of course, there were shadow puppets, too. Giggles and laughter bounced off the walls in our bedroom. Little Man fell asleep holding my hand, snuggled up next to me on our bed. His sisters' giggles were his bedtime music. As I tucked the girls into "bed" (a pallet on the floor), they called me "Ma" and chided me for calling them by their real names.

Now, after the kids are asleep I sit by an open window and write by candlelight. I can't help but feel joyful. Life here on the "prairie" is good. There's a different focus here. We like it. The kids like it. My daughter is wondering whether she wants the lights to come back on and all to return to normal. We are nothing if not blessed.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Stand and Take It

We're expecting a visit from Hurricane Ike tonight. All day long, we've been hearing things like "direct hit" and "glancing blow" (which does not seem to be our fate).

Really nothing for us to do except be armed and ready for no electricity, no conveniences, powerful wind and some rain. I thought about taking the kiddos and leaving (hubby was scheduled to work), but I really worried about getting our family stuck in traffic and running out of gas. I'd rather be home with some possible shelter than in that situation.

All day today, people ran back and forth to the stores....last minute batteries, bread, water....Lots of nervous energy in the air. But tonight, neighbors visited in driveways and chatted even as dark overtook the streets. We've done all that we can do. Now all we can do is stand and take whatever Ike brings with him.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Thanks for visiting! For more Wordless Wednesday posts go here and here.

Monday, September 8, 2008

At Dinner Last Night

After gobbling up a bite of spaghetti, Darling Daughter asks, "How do you get a baby?"

Adults look around, acting like they didn't hear.

Oldest daughter who has now had "the talk" uses wide eyes to look at Mom.

Persistant Darling Daughter--"How do you get a baby?"

Mom (seemingly preoccupied with spaghetti pieces on the floor), "Hmmm?"

Daughter "How do you get a baby? I mean, I know about going to the hospital and sitting on the bed and acting like you're sick and all, but before that....How do you get a baby?"

Mom's answer is most unenlightening (as it was meant to be!). "Oh, it's pretty complicated," said Mom. We'll talk about it a little more when you're a little older."

The first time around, Mama just told the oldest darling daughter that God gave out the babies. That was enough for her until she was older.

Silly Mama. This isn't the first time around.

What Would She Do At Home?

Last night my hubby and I sat together and watched one of his favorite television shows. It's not a sitcom, and it's not a night-time soap, and it's...well, the little one calls it the news. And it is, but not the local kind. And you might say that the "anchor" leans in a certain political direction. And that is all I have to say about that. Because what I'm about to tell you really is not about my political leanings, although I'm not silly enough to tell you that I don't have any.

What I'm about to tell you really is about women and the disrespect that still exists within our gender, against others in our gender.

As my hubby and I sat snuggled up close on the couch, I heard Geraldine Ferraro speak about Sarah Palin and how wonderfully capable she is. She didn't talk about her stance on abortion, about her position on the war or any of the "issues"--they clearly disagree on those. But she gave a rousing testimony about her ability to succeed in the world of politics and elections.

And then, no doubt as part of her support (although certainly not political support) for this forty-four year old mom of five, Mrs. Ferraro criticized those who have criticized Mrs. Palin for not staying at home to raise her children.

Ferraro said, (and I'm paraphrasing, but not loosely) Really. She's a talented contributor. What would she do at home?

Simple, really. But that spoke volumes to me about where we really are in this country today. Women. Working outside the home and getting paid for it. Working at home--raising our children, taking care of our families--and not being paid for it.

I admire Mrs. Ferraro for all that she has done in her life. I may or may not agree with her politics, but I admire the fact that she was our first female VP candidate. But Mrs. Ferraro just tipped her cards. She still believes that staying at home to raise your family is for those who can't do anything else well.

"How can it be a large career to tell other people’s children about arithmetic, and a small career to tell one’s own children about the universe? How can it be broad to be the same thing to everyone, and narrow to be everything to someone? No; a woman’s function is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute. I will pity Mrs. Jones for the hugeness of her task; I will never pity her for its smallness." ~GK Chesterton

**By no means am I criticizing Palin's choice not to stay at home to raise her family. My beef is with Ferraro.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Wordless Wednesday...Better Than Disney!

When God handed out the daddies, we got the best!

For more Wordless Wednesday posts, go here.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Labor Day

I visited Rocks in My Dryer today and thought this meme was fun! Join in; I'd love to hear your data!

How long were your labors?

Kid #1, 5 1/2 hours.
Kid #2, 7 hours.
Kid #3, 10 hours.

How did you know you were in labor?

Kid #1, Pitocin IV.
Kid #2, Pitocin IV.
Kid #3, Pitocin IV.

Obviously, I never went into labor on my own. I'm convinced that I would still be carrying around the last one if I hadn't begged my doctor to do something.

Where did you deliver?

The first two were born in the same hospital, same room, same day of the week, same time.

The last was born in a very large hospital room in a nice, new hospital. He was weighed, bathed, checked out and all in my same room. He never left us. Except for the one time that I just had to catch a little snooze, and I was afraid the hubby would doze and someone would come in and take my baby out of my arms.

Well, and there was that other time that he involved his little personal area (sorry, Sweetie...).


Most definitely. Yes. Although I did consider not having the epidural with my first. Until the contractions started. I was a pretty calm patient. No yelling, screaming. No ugly language. But my nurse, an older woman at the end of her shift, did drop this little question that has stuck with me for the past 12 years. She asked, "Did someone tell you this wasn't gonna' hurt?"

My second was "sunny-side up". Back labor. No question about the epi.

Contractions were pretty reasonble with my boy for a very long time. In fact, when the nurse gave me something before the epi, I really didn't think I needed it.

I got the epidural soon enough...soon enough for it to start to wear off before his birth. They fixed it or upped it or whatever they had to do, but by the time that he was almost here, the epi started wearing off only on one half of my belly. Enough that I could REALLY feel it. The staff finally told my mom that there was nothing else they could do for fear of parlyzing my lungs, so we'd just have to go with it.

A little later, as I was pushing and they were assuring me that if the doctor didn't get there in time they could deliver this baby no problemo, one of the nurses said, "Oh, man! Maybe if we turn the pitocin down, she won't feel those contractions as hard." That's kinda' funny. Now.


No. And I have to thank my doctor who was wonderful with all three because while I was in labor with the first one, the nurse (you know, the friendly one) took my mom into the hallway and told her that there was no way I was going to be able to deliver the normal way. She was head down, but apparently her head was turned in a funny way. My doctor, though, was able to turn her little head so that it all worked out for me.

Third one, the doctor told me that he wasn't decending, and there was a strong liklihood that I'd have to have a c-section. But I had an amazing nurse with the little guy, and she showed me how to rock and move in ways that got him moving south. Would never want to do those things out in public, however.

Who delivered?
The same sweet, quiet doctor. He's great. A little bit of an underestimator on the weight, but great otherwise.

Weight of Babies At Birth?

Okay, I added this one. Because I think I should get a prize. In fact, I was a little surprised when the staff didn't bring it to me before I left the hospital.

#1 7 1b., 7 oz.
#2 9 lb., 8 oz.
#3 10 lb., 2 oz.

Did you read that part about no c-section? That trophy should be here any day now, don't ya' think?

I want to read your story!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

More Little Gems...

So Little Sister asks me if she can run off to say hello to last year's teacher. After she gets the go ahead, Little Guy asks where she's going. "To see her old teacher," I tell him. Little Sister leans back and whispers, "No, Mom....elderly!"

Oops...hope last year's teacher didn't hear that one!

Friday, August 29, 2008

It's a Different Kind of School Year

School's in session! This year, we've got two different schools...traditional for our 6th grader, and a combination of traditional/homeschool for our 1st grader. And of course, our 2 y.o. will be part of our homeschool classroom.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Happy Birthday, Girly!


12 Things That I Love About You

You jump into life's adventures without hesitation.

You are so good with your little brother. Your responsibility really shines through
when you are with him.

You like to run and play and sweat!

You love your grandparents.

You are great in math--and spelling, too!

You read your Bible--sometimes even in the bathroom!

When Daddy is away, you sometimes ask if you can sleep with me.

You know the definition of modesty and live by its code.

You are a truth-teller.

You work hard at school--even when you don't feel like it; you know how important your education is.

You have an amazing smile and a contagious laugh.

You are a Jesus-lover.

One to grow on....I'm proud to be your mama!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Power of a True Apology...?

Tonight, as your 12th birthday approaches, I lecture. About attitude. Snarly, snippy, ungrateful attitude. In my beautiful girl. I don't understand. And I go on and on and on and on explaining all that you have to be grateful for and that your Daddy and I love you more than anyone else in the world loves you and....

...And you argue. You defend yourself. You blame us. I finally lose my cool. I yell. Two little sentences, but I yell. Ughhhhhhhhh!

I'm so frustrated that I could spit. But I yelled, and now I have to apologize. To my darling child who is acting so very selfish and who is grabbing every imperfection in me and using it as an excuse for her inexcusable attitude!!

Frankly, I botch the apology. I apolgize for yelling but go on to add a little more. And after a couple of minutes I add a little more. I don't think this is what apology means. I have messed up, and I need to regroup.

This is my prayer for you tonight:

Lord, bless this daughter that you gave to my husband and me almost 12 years ago. You know our hearts and how we prayed for and longed for this girl, had her name picked out before she was even formed.

Bless her in ways that we cannot imagine. She is such a strong personality--a strong-willed girl; please send your Holy Spirit to mold that personality and will. Shape it so that it will bring glory to Your Name.

Bless her teachers and those in authority over her by bringing them closer to you, and let this shine through to my girl. Father, touch her heart that it will be open and responsive to Your Word and Your Will.

Grant her the humility that her 12 year old heart does not yet know. At the same time, grant her the confidence that comes from knowing You and from knowing that You hold her in the palm of Your Hand.

Bless her friends, Lord. Draw those that will bring her closer to You closer to her, and have the rest fall away. At the same time, call her heart and mind to stand up for You even when surrounded by enemies.

And Lord, when my girl crosses the line and directly disobeys or defies, send someone to catch her so that she does not persist in disobedience but comes back to the path of obedience quickly.

I ask that you work on our hearts, Lord, that her Daddy and I will be patient when needed and unwavering when needed. Help us know when to keep our mouths shut. Help us to be patient and trusting in You and Your Grace always--and especially when we have nothing left to give. Guide us all through these next few years; we've never been here before, and I'm not really sure that I want to go.

After all of these things that I've asked, I don't want to forget to say thank you, Lord. There was a time when I wondered if we'd ever have this child to pray for. You have truly given me the desire of my heart.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Power of a Positive Word

Life is fast. Sometimes, it feels like I am speeding down life's freeway at 55 mph with no windshield...bugs in the face and all. It seems like I miss some...a lot... of things, because it's all coming at me so fast right now. A lot of times, I miss the power of an unsolicited, unexpected bit of praise for my children or my sweetheart. The power of that positive word was brought home to me tonight as God touched my heart through a gentle stranger.

Today was an amazing day. You know those days when you spend the entire day doing fun things,the kids get to be kids with very little fussing, and when the sun has been put to bed for a good, long time, the kids fall asleep in the car on the way home--all red-cheeked and sweaty around the hairline? Today was that kind of wonderful.

My daughter's birthday is this week, so we were celebrating. Family came in to visit, we had her birthday party with friends from school, dinner with my sister and brother-in-law and the surprise of this concert. (Thanks, Missy!)I couldn't have asked for a better day. As we sat on the field, the two younger kiddos danced, hugged, poked and just generally acted like children. I got to enjoy their hugs and "You're the best mommy ever!" sprinkled generously throughout their dancing. My birthday girl was happy. We were hot and sweaty, but I couldn't have cared less.

Sometime after 9 o'clock, we packed up to go home. The hubby and the little guy went to the car and let the "ladies" and I wait for him to drive the car around. As we were waiting, I felt a soft touch on my shoulder, and a sweet stranger said this to me. "We were sitting behind you, and I just wanted to tell you that you have a lovely family." She had a kind, soft smile on her face, and my heart melted at her words.

On the way home, I basked in the glow of a great day, and I started thinking that I want to be more like this lady. I do give praise. And I do try to get to the heart when I give it. But I have to tell you that a lot of times...a lot of times, I do it to get the desired behavior out of my children. ("Wow! You're such a big helper!" or "Thanks for feeding the dog without me asking you.") Not to say that training them in a positive way is bad. It's definitely not. But what would it do for them if I praised them sometimes when I stand to gain nothing? When it really is all for them? A gift to them. What would happen then? To them?

For that matter, what would happen if I praised my husband more--for being a hard worker, a risk-taker and possibility--see-er, a great and loyal friend, better than me at something? What in the world would happen in my home?

What would happen if I praised other people? I'm kind of shy, and it's an extra challenge for me to do this. But what would happen? If I praised a mom for her beautiful family? What would happen if I passed it on?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

For more Wordless Wednesday posts go here and here.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

And Today.....

Nonchalant sister to relaxed Mama.... "Remember that time when we were out and we lost little brother?"

Mama (quickly scanning all of the her F moments in parenting over the past three years but still coming up blank for this one) "Uhhhhh, noooo, I don't remember that."

Mama (a little less relaxed), "Where were we?"

Sister (still at least feigning nonchalance) "Oh, that's right. I don't think you were there. I think we were with Daddy."

More on where Mama was in the next few days.

Friday, August 8, 2008


Overheard in the kitchen....

asked by the little girl who loves pretend play and agitating siblings, especially when they can be combined in one brilliant fell swoop,

"Little brother, do you want me to peck your head?"

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


A couple of little gems that have trickled out of the mouths of my little ones...

While waiting for our coffee and hot chocolate at Starbucks, my sunshine girl observed (loudly), "That guy looks like Jesus!" After a few moments, her observation continued with, "but I don't think Jesus works at Starbucks!"

During a recent diaper change, "if you cut off that little tube, would my little brother be a girl?"

Just proof that we are still living the life--even though blogging about it has been next to impossible lately! More soon!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I'm Alive!

Just a quick little post to say that my entire family and I are alive and well. Summer has been so eventful with piano camp, swim team, basketball camp, visits to grandparents, grandparents in the hospital, school changes for the upcoming school year, etc., etc., etc. Hope to get back here with a real post soon!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Daddy's Home!

Daddy's home, and the fun begins!
Just for a minute,
Mama forgets that no running is allowed in the house
And that we take good care of the couch pillows...
We shouldn't ever throw them.
Or walk on them.
Or smoosh them in any way.
Mama's rule about not being rough with each other?
It gets lost for a little bit
As Daddy wrestles each child to the floor,
Tickles at the most unexpected times,
Growls like a wild lion
And poses in some sort of threatening stance.
Daddy's home, and the fun begins!