Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Caged Monkey

I'm so thankful for playpens.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Mr. Roboto

So I really watched my tone yesterday...until right before supper. I have to admit that when 4 o'clock comes around this is my hardest part of the day. I'm getting worn out and tired. we've had a full day, Brian chased Gabby with a robe, found one of Allen's hunting knifes (don't ask) and started taking the bark off the tree, he messed up Gabby's bed after she made it, but that was Makensie's fault for hiding his candy under the sheets. Brian showed me his little collection of tools he's been stashing away that he's picked up from the construction site behind us if the guys leave their stuff laying close by, (this should really impress them as we had to go over and make things right just 2 days ago when they poured concrete in the ditch and when it was all smooth and finished Brian stabbed a giant stick in the middle). Wyatt loves to be held and I do love toting him, but I'm afraid I'll become a freak of nature with one muscular arm. Someone drank all the coffee, did I do that? Makensie's birthday is coming up so every conversation starts with "At my party..." And we have a conversation every 3 minutes. We had 3 movies that we checked out at the library and couldn't find them anywhere, tore the house apart looking for them me stressing the rule the whole time about no one takes anything out of the library bag, and following every lead the kids gave me, "I think I took them upstairs and had it on my desk" "I think it fell behind my bed" I finally gave up called the library to apologize and although they are on my library receipt, they do not show on the library computer and they say I never checked them out. I'm adding this to my insanity pleading. Makensie made some kind of magic potion outside and had to turn on the hose for water, only for Brian to pick it up and hose the girls down with it. some men stopped by because they only had a couple more pieces of steak to sell for the day out of the back of a truck. Sounds sanitary. Told them we had a 1/2 beef in the chest and then started to try to sell the pork....luckily I pointed to Sweetheart and told them that she was in line next. she's not, but I wish you could have seen his face.

So by 5 O'clock and making supper I try to head the kids outside except the kiddo of the day who is helping cook. However, last night they all wanted to help or at least be in the kitchen. Wyatt in the playpen fussing to be set free, Gabby singing loudly some silly song then laughing at herself, Makensie grating up the cheese for the burritos and somehow managed to knock the thing over and apart 3 times now, and Brian - the unmanageable boy - walking by stealing pieces of cheese and Makensie whining about it and his dirty hands. I responded kindly to each trip 1: "Brian, wait til supper" 2:"Brian, leave the cheese alone", 3: "Brian, quit taking the cheese" I should have dealt with him after #2, but I was now trying to carry wyatt and finish up supper and the Gabby was now setting the table and getting out the side items and cold stuff and asking lots of questions. Then Makensie lets me know again, "MOM! Brian took another piece of the cheese!" Mind you it is shredded - it is just the fact that he is only doing it to annoy Makensie. So I yell this time, "BRIAN! Go outside and leave the cheese alone!" He spins around and with does this little drama skit of bulging eyes and starts shivering like he's really scared and shocked then walks to the door mimicking a robot and in his best little robot voice says over and over, "Uh, Oh. Bad attitude alert, bad attitude alert, uh oh, bad attitude alert."

Thank goodness I started reading Bringing Up Boys otherwise tomorrow I might only have girls in the house. What boy? I don't have a boy?

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Taming of the Shrew

A couple of months ago a single evening event changed my thoughts towards another person. I was very disappointed and found myself in a newly formed relationship with them. The mold that was there had been broken and we started to build a new one. One that was foreign to both of us, I felt like my role had changed. And the one area that I was condemning them on, infected me and became my own nemesis. The most powerful sword of destruction, the tongue.
My tongue has really been my master lately. And it seems like once that gate has been opened, the harder it is to lasso that slimy creature back in. I have always had a quick silver tongue. Most times it is all in fun and wit, and other times it is for saying the perfect comeback at the perfect time only for me to live with the regret of my quickness for the rest of my life.

Wyatt is not saying anything yet, still just making baby grunts and precious babbling. And I'm OK with that. I know the pain of spending your life trying to get that seemingly little muscle to work for good and not evil. To not slander, gossip, talk excessively, lie, flatter, abuse, hurt.

My love language is words. I can live for weeks on a simple compliment. I talk to myself all day long. I get high on the praise and then mull over comments and wonder if there was a hidden agenda. I wonder why someone said something the "way" they said it. I can also hold onto the sting from a negative comment for years. I am just a words person. And because of that, it is easy for me to encourage others with words just the same. They truly can be such a beautiful gift.

Yet out of my same mouth can come this spill of yuck. I can be my own Medusa. And who catches the brunt of my nastiness? Who do I snap at when I'm stressed or just worn? Not that friend that stops by unexpected that interrupts the schedule, after all that is a welcomed break. I sit and chat and laugh and feel fulfilled. Instead the negative flows out to land on my little blessings. These little gifts. The very young women I'm instructed to mentor. The little husbands in training, learning how to speak to their wives.

Makensie is a words person too. She loves me to tell her all the things I love about her. She eats it up when I read from the journal I've written to her. In the early morning, the smell of coffee, the sun rising, the birds singing, having spent time at His feet, the sound of a baby starting to yawn and stretch, the to do list made, hope for a blessed day, all else still. It feels as if life is just where it suppose to be, calm, quiet, beautiful.

I try to hold onto this, yet it feels as almost daily I fail at some point and lose my self-control and snap without thinking. Is it really that hard to say for the 100th time "Brian, use your inside voice, please." and take time out to train, correct and discipline when needed vs "BRIAN! USE YOUR INSIDE VOICE!" No wonder the kids yell when they get frustrated. No wonder Makensie talks back or speaks sarcastically to me at times. Those are the times when I just want to get sick or throw up my hands in defeat. What am I doing?! What have I taught them? What did God see in me to trust me with 4 kids? I'm sure people have stopped by to hear me yelling upstairs rather than just walking up to talk to them or calling them down. It just seems that I often choose to speak roughly to them the first time lately...bossing them around...rather than talking with them. Isn't this what caused the downfall in my relationship to begin with? Why is it easier to judge someone else for the same flaws I have myself?

One of the things I've changed in the last 3 weeks is going back to the listed chore charts for the kids. I lay them out each morning, they are printing and kept in a cover sheet for crossing off tasks with the dry erase marker. And as the Bible says, if you don't work, you don't eat. So since I don't want to start in with the yelling from having to remind them to feed the pig or put away their laundry 10o times and then having to discipline them when I'm upset; the chores have to be completed by lunch or they don't eat. This has too been difficult for me, I always hate to seem them hungry, but I've found hunger to be a better motivator than fear of getting into trouble. Two of the kids have missed lunch, several times, one of them has the chores completed 1st thing so they are free the rest of the day. This has helped my sanity immensely.

Now to retrain my strongest muscle to always speak gently first. I would never speak to my friends with the tone I have with my kids sometimes just because "it's been a bad day, I'm tired, I'm grumpy" or speak to them in a make to make sure they knew I was annoyed with them. Where did I ever get it in my head that it is OK to act that way with my own flesh and blood? Where did I get it in my heart that my own personal interests are more important and warrant not being interrupted? A lot of noise, squabbling and disorder can quickly raise my blood pressure. And guess what happens when you have kids, 4 young kids? Noise, squabbling and disorder. Yesterday I took the baby outside and walked around a couple of times, just being outside in the fresh air seems to give a better perspective. At least for the first 30 seconds before all the others come searching for me, "what are you doing, mom?" "are you going somewhere" "can you get me some tea?" "Brian came in my room without asking".

I look forward to the construction going on in the back yard being completely shortly so that we can all be outside in the beautiful weather more. I look forward to being a woman of grace and gentleness of words. I know that what is in my heart will be developed to be a blessing to HIM.

Psalm 141:3-Lord guard my mouth and help me to shut up.
Eph 4:29-32-Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God,...Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Lord forgive me. Thank you for shedding light on my sins. Thank you for convicting my heart. Thank you for accountability angels in the form of friends. Please Lord, Protect my children from my tongue and allow them to find comfort in you when I fail them. I pray that I will direct them to the only one who will ever fill all their needs, and never fail them or hurt their little hearts out of selfishness, weakness or frustration. Lord grow in me a new heart today, one that will desire your approval above all others. Grow in me a new spirit today that will be ultra sensitive to my tone and words. Grow in me wisdom today to sense when to hide away in prayer before saying something I cannot ever take back from the ears of babes.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

In My Spare Time I like to Sleep

I am way too busy to be blogging tonight. But here I am in my little comforter zone of order when the world is not. I think I'm addicted to busyness. I thrive on the challenge of getting more done. I know everyone is just as busy as me if not more so. I'm not complaining or looking for sympathy. Just thinking in the form of writing. So the next 6 weeks schedule?

This week I'm cleaning from 5-7am each morning the Dr's offices.
Library Story hour-Thursdays
Park Day - Fridays
Family Game or movie night on Friday nights
Lowe's Clinic-Saturday
Saturday Sundown Feast and Festivities every Saturday night
Easter brunch at church
Easter lunch at families Sunday
Weight loss class each Monday night at 5
Financial Peace Class each Monday night at 6:30
Host on online book/bible study each Monday night (we have over 80 ladies now, exciting)
Church on Wednesday nights
Friend's Arbonne party next Thursday
Mothering Matters (mops) every other Friday
Nature Notebook class
Always the temptation to hit the yard sales Friday mornings
Taking a new mom a meal
My open house for being a new Stampin UP! demonstrator (story to follow soon...exciting!)
The kids have an Education Fair and the 3 oldest are participating
Makensie's (Hanna Montana) bday party
Teaching the high school home school girls color draping and how to dress your body for individual personality and fit. Love doing this, and trust me I'm a better coach than a player.
Answers in Genesis seminar
Homeschool groups Spring Party
Homeschool curriculum Fair, as if I'm not confused enough by all the options.
Taxes are due, which mean I have to start them.
Youth writing contest deadline
Going out of town to help host a baby shower for my baby sister, she's all grown up now.
Making cards for the baby shower
The girls are each writing a book, have book assembly night
Our Dogwood Arts and Crafts festival and I have a booth to sell some of my windows and cards.
I need to paint some windows and make some cards 1st. Wouldn''t it be funny if I only had one of each? lol. That would probably scare some people, they would think I was crazy. Maybe I should wear my thong bikini too (remember I'm a heavy girl) and run around sometimes acting like I'm being chased by bees and tell passerbyers that all the rest of my inventory is invisible. I think this will also help me to win the case of insanity that I'm sure I'll need to take advantage of some day.
Young Authors Books presentation reception
Friends birthday, girls night out. I'll just say by this point in the game, I hate to be a bad friend, but don't count on me as the designated driver, I'll probably be starting the blender for breakfast.
Kindergarten graduation (yes Gabby is in 1st, but she didn't get to do the graduation last year and wants to, so...ya...that's part of homeschooling...choices, what can I say. Other than she's not going to be happy having to wear Makensie's blue robe when everyone got to pick their own colors this year and she finds out she could have picked hot pink or lime green.)
Rocky Branch School Field Trip to have a day of school in a one room school house.

This is all in addition to my already somewhat full daily schedule. Which I'll also post on. I have a lot of things that I want to write about. I have a huge list of mindless things I want to journal on. If I can just make it through the next 6 weeks I think things will slow down and we can breathe. Until then, bring on the Pepsi Max and coffee. And if a bourbon and gin street pedler wants to stop by, I'd probably be ok with that too.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Cat Scratch Fever

Brian ran in the house out of breath, huffing with excitement and in his not so inside voice yells, "mom! I need your fingernail sharpeners!" (aka fingernail file) I gave him the file and asked, "so, why are you "sharpening" your nails?" He tells me, "I need to climb a tree!"

Friday, March 14, 2008

It's A Miracle

Brian has never liked Mayonnaise. He would rather eat his sandwiches dry than have to eat it. So a couple of weeks ago when he was at Grandma's, she mentioned that she had taken him to Subway and he ate the entire sandwich and then told her that he guessed he did like mayonnaise after all. So yesterday I went to fix sandwiches for lunch and he insisted on NO mayonnaise.

I said, "I thought grandma said you liked it at her house."

He tells me, "I do like mayonnaise, just not the Super mayonnaise."

"What? Awww, you mean Miracle Whip."

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Hooked on Phonics

So far this week we have had several interesting conversations over our phonics lessons.

Brian has started, as he turned 5 and thinks he is now ready to start school. I'll take him while he's interested. He's actually doing really well with all 4 lessons he has under his belt and is sounding out a couple of 3 letter words.

Gabby taught me the importance of phonics accuracy when sounding out such words as "shot".

Makensie taught me that our redneckism is ingrained into her very being. After sounding out the word "shot" correctly, I asked her to use it in a sentence.
"I shot the deer!"
"Ok, that is one form of shot, good job." Then I asked her, "Can you think of another type of shot?"
She says, "Here kitty, kitty, boom! Now I shot the cat!"
Ok. Moving on.

Friday, March 07, 2008

It's All Her Fault!

So after Wendy posted on her creativity, I can't quit thinking about it. Yes! This is exactly how I feel. I love doing creative projects, painting on windows, make cards, decorating. I must admit I'm more of a copycat than an originalist (I don't think that is a word). I have a hard time coming up with great projects on my own, but I love running with someone else's idea...just like this post. I am not half as talented as Wendy with the artsy fartsy things, but I enjoy them just the same. They make me happy, fulfilled. And not that I need one more thing collecting dust in my house, but I love LOVE yard sales always hoping to find some vintage, flowery something that I truly enjoy that can replace something I have that I don't. And for me, the more eye candy the better.

That is also why I so enjoy being at Tab's house. Not only am I in the company of an amazingly funny, witty, talented mom, writer, singer, insightful woman, encouraging friend and God fearing woman...there is so much really cool beautiful things to look at. Everywhere! Her house is the closest thing I can think of that mirrors the magazines when they show older romantic vintage homes. Her home echos my heart of what I want my house to eventually look like. Oh why can't I have the talent to put things together so they flow vs making you think, "I love what you were trying to do there." Right now...our formal dining room that I wanted to have the Shabby Chic style started out with a light cotton candy pink paint, white trim, white table and chair and old grand piano. Then we switch and now it has an 80's hutch and table, and 2 deer head trophies, 1 cow skull, and 1 fish mount. WHAT? What is that saying?

All in good time. I need to get the house flowing smoothly with our new rearranged schedule of Wyatt giving up his morning nap to nap 4 hours right in the middle of the day. Keep on task with home school, we are writing and illustrating 2 books right now. The girls are starting to research their education fair topics, taxes are on top of me along with the fact that we paid $2K more than needed to another state in sales taxes 3 years ago and you can only imagine the red tape involved in trying to redeem that money back to us.

This morning in Mothering Matters the question was posed, "How do you achieve your dreams that God gave you during this season of life with little ones?" I don't know. Can it be done 5 minutes at a time? I personally don't have any relief as Allen works a lot of hours and it stresses him out to keep all the kids for much time at all. So I almost always have 4 little ones with me, or at the very least one. And if I do get a break it is usually after bed time and I'm so empty myself by that time, just reading or watching a movie and falling asleep 5 minutes into it is all I see capable of. I have so many dreams. I often ask God, why he put such a desire in my heart if that is not something that I can do in this season. Will I ever get the chance to pursue my dreams vs everyone else's? I also think for me, the hardest thing is when I see one of my friends accomplishing one of their dreams that I too have in my heart. Not that I in anyway begrudge them, it is just hard because I can feel their excitement and have to wonder "why not me?" "will that same excitement someday be mine to experience."

Where am I going? This is all Wendy's fault for stirring up the dust of my inner creativity. I do have a stamping swap that I'm going to get to enjoy this week with my friend Trish. I'm looking forward to just sitting down and having some playtime with the paper, and chalks and the smell of ink and the embellishments....mmmmmm. Have a beautiful weekend!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Psalms 51

I feel like I could pray this prayer every day.

Psalms 51

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are proved right when you speak and justified when you judge. Surely I have been a sinner from birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me. Surely you desire truth in the inner parts, you teach me wisdom in the inmost place. Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you. Save me from bloodguilt, O God, the God who saves me, and my tongue will sing of your righteousness. O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Beauty Is In The Eye of the Beholder.

Allen: Brian you need to get your room all cleaned up.
Brian: It is, come and look.
Allen: (Goes upstairs) Brian, your room is not all picked up. You still have the train set all out.
Brian: The train set it NOT a mess, it is a creation.


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