‘Twas the night before Christmas…

And all through the house, not a creature was stirring…except the puking youngest child… *sigh*

And so came crashing down the plans for our yearly Christmas brunch…*sigh*

We had great plans, which we hope to piece together throughout the week once all are strong and healthy again.  🙂  The kids had a skit about The Legend of the Candy Cane, we had brunch planned including such yummy things as quiche, she crab soup, crab cakes monkey bread, meatballs, champagne, desserts and other delectibles.  We had a new fireplace to share the “warmth” of Christmas.  😉  Not to mention gifts galore.

You know what though?… my kids (and myself, as well) were most disappointed about not getting together with the people!  We love being with our extended family!  We have been talking all month about how Christmas isn’t about all the frills and gifts, but solely the rejoicing of Christ’s birth.  The birth of our Savior!  Without this glorious day we would have no hope and no future.  And so, tomorrow, we will focus on that even more with our quiet and subdued day warding off illness.  I will miss seeing my family and serving them brunch and giving them gifts…but that will come soon enough.  Tomorrow we will just huddle together as a family and rejoice our king!  And if the kids are well enough, we will spoil them a bit with all the feast foods that are left to be eaten by someone…  😉  Oh yes and there will be presents of course.

Speaking of glorious, we just had an amazing Christmas Eve service at our church that was truly glorious.  Seriously, I would have paid money to see the worship team…their performance was amazing!  And the hope of Christ was clearly stated throughout the evening.

The hope of Christ gives such peace and joy!  I see it in my kids constantly.  They have such a wonderful perspective on things.  When we go to visit Joshua, it is a place of good memories for them.  The cemetery is just another playground where they are able to visit Joshua’s place, decorate it and throw in a game of tag.

I am going to repeat the quote I posted last time, because it is just meaningful to me.  Life changes, love remains…No matter what life throws at us…from a sick kid to a horrible loss…love remains.  Love is the most important thing we can give and receive.  Love from one another is an amazing thing.  Love from Christ, our King and Savior, trumps everything.

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11.6.14

Yes, yes, yes, I know.   Promises to be here every day.  I know.  But, I have been saving up verses and will tell you why in a moment.  I am not making any more promises to be on here every day, but I will try very hard to be.  😉

We have had 3 pipe semi-flooding incidents in the last 3 weeks…none connected, all annoying, all time consuming.  I have been knocked down for the past week with gall bladder issues, which has made the eating and exercising thing a bit tricky.  Ironically it hit when I was eating my healthiest, but I am not usually unhealthy (I do not deprive myself of a good burger or milkshake on occasion, but I am generally not in those situations), we are the typical chicken, fruit and veggie family.  Boring, yes, healthy, yes.

So health first…I have not exercised in about a week.  Hoping to start today.  I hadn’t been sleeping…like, at all…so getting on a treadmill was daunting and lifting weights…well, let’s just say I feared dropping things on my head.  😉  I have been great with calories now that I am afraid of food, which you would show on the scale.  I am not worried about losing weight right now…truly…but ya know, an added perk to being sick is usually losing weight.  I think I lost an ounce.  My body is just quite out of whack these days.

Enough about me, I have had some wonderful verses (yes, they are all wonderful) come to my email through my daily verse website and I wanted to share.

He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.  2 Corinthians 3:6

Jesus is the only way we can enter His Kingdom and have eternal life.  Following every law to the “T” will not get us there.  Now, that does not mean you should break laws just because His forgiveness abounds.  If we are one with Christ and know the sacrifices He has made for us, we should want to make choices He wants us to make and reach even those who treat us or those we love the worst.

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.  1 Peter 2:9

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.  Ephesians 2:8-9

Mommy Real

I am generally the stereotypical mom/teacher whose immune system is strong and doesn’t have time to be sick.  😉  Well, some crud came and hit the whole family hard this week.  During the worst day for all of us, I was scheduled to take dinner to a friend, which I loved doing (no complaints).  But after teaching sick kiddos all day, cooking their dinner, and delivering it, I was spent and so were they.  Again, not complaining, this is just leading up to my mommy failure.  It was just about six on our way home and I was debating dinner for us.  My mind, nose and head were clogged and so we pulled into the grocery store where I proceeded to buy packaged sodium.  For those of you who know me, this is not my style, but sometimes something has to give.  And I felt extremely guilty laying down the made for kid tv dinners, as well as donuts for the next morning.  But, such is life.  And the kids love donuts!!!  🙂

asthma, nice weather, stir crazy

My calm, sweet little girl has caught a coughing virus.  It is keeping us all up at night.  The dr. prescribed her with some mild steroids to help her asthma which is going crazy with the cough.  Nice weather + 10 days of school left + beautiful weather + confinement to the couch + asthma medicine + no sleep at night = calm child bouncing off the walls = crazy mommy.  HA!  🙂

 

 

Doggish Cat

My daughter has a Barbie movie in which there is a cat that is referred to as a “doggish cat.”   Most likely because it is a tomcat and barks.  We all know that cats in Barbie movies are usually girls.  😉

My husband and I adopted 2 tiny kittens a few months after we were married.   Non-pet owners will not understand, but before we had children, they were like our babies.  Unfortunately for them, after we had children, they lost a bit of rank in the house.  😉

One was abused in her first month of life.  The shelter found her on the side of the road with her whiskers pulled out.  Stormy was the size of a snowball when we saw her.  She loved us right away, but would go into hiding when others would come into the house.  She is definitely a cat cat…she has cuddled with me since she could fit in my shoe, but she is a bit overly skiddish and has a mind of her own.  She is beginning to warm up to others now…slowly but surely.

Riley was our doggish cat.  We chose her from the shelter at the same time as Stormy, and though they look identical, Riley was born at the shelter.  She and Stormy were great “friends.”  Riley would come when called, would thump her foot when we scratched her ear, would follow us around, and sleep in my daughter’s bed each night (sometimes as the pillow).  We even were able to play fetch with her when she was young.

We had to say goodbye to Riley this weekend.  Pets are loyal and love you unconditionally, they let you cuddle them when you need comfort and “forgive” you when you ignore them.  It is hard to lose a pet, hard to lose anything that has been a positive part of your life for 13 years, but it is even harder when you have small children.  They knew she was sick, they knew she was not likely going to get better, but in the end she went much faster than we thought.  That is a blessing, especially for her sake.  It was hard to watch her in the end.  Kids are troopers, though, and though they miss her, they have an ability to put things in better perspective than adults sometimes.  Again, I know pet owners, or even simply dog owners, may not understand, but our hearts are heavy this week as we miss our doggish cat.

“small” blessings

Sometimes the little things in life prove to be the biggest and best blessings and joys.

My youngest has an old soul as some would say.  He is goofy and crazy and rotten and young, but in certain things he has an understanding, a forgiveness and an almost wise.  When my daughter was sad a couple months ago about giving up her old bike (she could ride the new one, but it still made her nervous and the old one needed to go) he took the bike and said he would take care of it and moved it away from her sight.  So sweet, but not surprising.

Our cat is very sick and likely not going to make it much longer…all of the kids brought her their favorite comfort items and gently tucked them around her.

My youngest told me the other day that I was his best girl friend.  🙂

A few weeks ago we were coming home from a family outing and someone was throwing out a great air hockey table…which is now in our possession.

My two second graders had to write about someone they admire and my son chose his dad and my daughter chose me.  🙂

And of course endless hugs and kisses from all of them.  Life’s blessings are so sweet and simple, we just need to grasp them and cherish them.

And just to add a little turmoil to the life’s sweetness, but again on a very simple note…no crisis.  My lawn mower starter is my enemy.  It starts wonderfully for my husband but it doesn’t like me…and I do nothing different.  Oh well!  After 20…yes 20 minutes of trying to get it to start…would you believe the sky opened up and rained on me?  😛

 

Scents

I enjoy fresh air.  When that is not an option and stale house air is…I enjoy adding a little fragrance to the air.  There is a problem with that when you have a house that asthmatics live in.  I love candles!  It makes them sick.  So…I discovered a cool website online that suggests you boil water with cinnamon sticks, vanilla, orange slices, etc…any natural scent you want.  You can leave it on the stove or pour some of the mixture in a candle warmer.   I gave the stove method a try today as we don’t have any candle warmers at the moment, but I think I will be purchasing them soon.  I thought the rooms smelled good and they are not supposed to trigger any asthma symptoms, so win win!  My choice today was vanilla and cinnamon since that is what was on hand.  I am not sure how long they are supposed to last, but hoping for some time.

On a completely different scent note.  It seems that our stink bugs are not the cause of demise for our animals.  Our cat may be able to survive a few more years…it is likely but we are still kind of waiting to see.  And our fish is actually looking like he is making a comeback.  The kids are SO happy!  🙂

500

I wanted to do something amazing for post 500, but I haven’t done one of my random posts in quite some time, so I decided to make this a random post of random ideas.

STRENGTH

I am stronger than I was when I began this blog 500 posts ago.  Stronger physically and stronger emotionally.  Physically I have run my first half marathon, followed numerous body building programs, gained muscle, lost fat and am currently training for my first mud event…not a full Tough Mudder, but a 7 mile version.

Emotionally and spiritually I have been forced to grow stronger.  This is a bittersweet blessing as I have seen many loved ones struggle with various serious life issues since I began this blog.  God has shown me so much of His strength, let me rely on it, let me trust it, and let me share some of it.  Despite that it is still difficult to see loved ones in pain.

STINK BUGS

Stink bugs have attacked our home.  We have tried so many tactics to get rid of them.  They themselves are not vicious, but they are cyanide based.  A year or so ago my cat ate one and became very sick.  Sadly she is still sick and I wonder if the stink bug is the cause.  We are hoping that she does get better…she has lots of years ahead of her.  A week ago a stink but landed in our fish tank, and wouldn’t you know that our little Swimmy is not so swimmy since then.  We are waiting to see if he regains a little bit of energy or if tornado like waters are in his future.  😦

CHILDREN

Of course these little people in my home have changed quite a bit in this short period of time.  They are smarter, bolder (sometimes good, sometimes bad), taller, sweeter, closer to their next birthdays.  Since I am their teacher as well as mommy, I decided to add some fun regular days.  So we now have cooking days on Tuesdays and Science days on Thursdays.  I treasure these days because most of the time I am the one telling them what to do or not to do in school and in home life.  During these special days it gives me a chance to just have fun with them as we do interesting things.  This last Tuesday we made rice krispy treats and tomorrow we are going to make a volcano.

FOOD

I made a wonderful snack discovery today.  Almonds are quite healthy, in moderation of course.  Today on the shelf, the perfect and most delicious way to eat almonds…WASABI AND SOY…oh amazing!

BIBLE

On this 500th post…the most important thing you could ever know:

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

 – John 3:16

No matter where you are in life or what you are doing, take the time to know the One who made you, suffered for you and died for you.   Study His Word and embrace it.

weekly update

Confused…the scale has been a little crazy with me sick lately…severe ups and downs.  This morning my BMI is 20.4 which is the best it has been on this scale in quite a long time!  I have been watching my food intake, but I haven’t been able to workout to the same degree…so I do fear that it is all muscle loss and will spring right back when I am back to hard core lifting.  We will see.  But for today, I am 20.4 and holding on to it.  🙂

weekly update

Frustrated…

All my progress has gone back to the beginning…erg!   I am again sick and just can’t get my body moving, so I gain the weight.  😦  I am hopeful to get back into the swing of things this week…my goal will not be met by the end of the year (it wouldn’t be healthy to do so)…but hopefully not too long after.  I keep tossing around the idea of a personal trainer…but I know what I need to do, it would just be for accountability, so I keep reminding myself that I need to be better about keeping myself accountable.