Thursday, October 29, 2009

Busy, busy, busy

Today was one of those days that you felt like you had already had a day by 11:00 a.m.! You know what I'm talking about? Not to say that it didn't have it's happy moments, or as I like to say, red shoe moments. It started out with Israel waking up a little bit early and woke me out of those sleeps where you feel like you could sleep forever. He was a good boy though and laid in our bed for about 30 minutes, just quietly letting us snooze. But 6:30 came and I dragged myself out of bed to go fix the bottle. Faith came over to stay with him while I took Joel to work since Israel was already down for his first morning nap. Joel and I left and decided to sneak in a little special breakfast on the go, so we went through the drive through of our favorite place...Starbucks! They have these buns called Morning Buns, that are absolutely to die for! Maybe not so good for the hips though. I came back home from dropping Joel off and scurried around trying to clean up my house. It was a rainy morning, and I like my house clean on rainy days. I jumped in the shower, got myself ready to go, got Israel up, fed him, put him in the car, headed out again to go to the chiropractor. But not before we stopped at Target to get some diapers ( a must have these days) and then back to Joel's work to pick him up again to come to the dr. with us. Wow! Does that sound like a busy morning to you??? Oh and I almost forgot...Israel doesn't like his carseat, so he screams 99% of the time, plus it was rainy, so that didn't make our errands any easier. Then after the chiropractor, there was a slow stop at a drive through chinese place while Israel cried, and then a stop at Joanne's Fabric store, where I ran into several not very helpful people. Ah well, I was glad to get back in the car and amazingly enough enjoy a quiet drive home. My afternoon as been quiet with little Izzy taking his nap, but it hasn't been pain free. I went to walk on our tread mill, and I jumped off while it was still going to go fix something. That was successful, but as I was getting back on, I think I became distracted, and didn't remember how fast the belt was moving. I got all tripped up and ended up on my knees rolling back and trying to get up at the same time and got strawberries on both my knees! I haven't had one of these since I was a kid!!! They hurt!!!

So the red shoe moments was getting breakfast with Joel, finding a new make-up bag, having a quiet afternoon, and loosing 2 pounds in 2 days! I know it doesn't sound like much, but I am rejoicing at every little ounce that comes off! My goal? 4 more pounds to pre-baby weight, and 9 more pounds to pre-wedding weight.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Live well, laugh often, love much

I have always like this quote, but the other day I realized I was not living it. I was reading another blog, and one sentence jumped out at me...something about how they were enjoying life. I realized that in all my feeling sorry for myself for different things, I was missing out on enjoying my life as it is! I have so many things to be grateful for: My wonderful husband, my adorable son, my family, friends, my church, and oh so much more. So I really would like to just relax, and enjoy life a little more than I am, and be thankful for all my blessings. 

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Why Me?

As I mentioned in my previous post, Israel has had a neck problem going on, and it has been very troubling to both Joel and I. There came a point when I was really not please with the Lord and His decision to inflict us with this mystery. I wondered why He would want Israel to be like this, and didn't see any good in it at all. It was just frustrating. I would pray...beg the Lord to strengthen his neck, and then cringe all day long every time I looked at him, because the poor baby was seeing everything crooked! Our pediatrician told us to go see a chiropractor and see if he could help at all. We went and were very pleased. He adjusted Izzy, and said that his neck muscle on that side was a little tight. By the next day we could already see improvement. We have been again, and we keep seeing more and more improvement in other areas as well. I started to praise the chiropractor for fixing Izzy, since it appeared that God wasn't answering my prayers. How wrong could I be. How ashamed I was when I figured this out. I was so ashamed that I could barely form words to thank the Lord for working THROUGH the chiropractor. Last night I confessed to the Lord that I was angry with Him, and sorry for it, and asked Him to help me respond in a better way if this happens again, or when something else that I don't understand comes along.

I am very thankful that my child looks like a normal child again, and pray that it stays that way. I have so much more to write, but I have dinner to make and a baby to feed, and a headache to get rid of. So good bye for now.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Pills and Bills

This is that time of year I guess, when everyone is getting sick. Well, I sure have had my share of the cold. For weeks now I have been battling the comings on of a cold and trying my best to nip it in the bud. Just when I think that I have, it comes back again. Morning and evenings were spent blowing my nose and feeling...not too good. But through it all I was so thankful that little Israel and my husband were still healthy.

But Israel has had something else going on that has concerned me even more. His little head tends to favor one side of his neck more than the other so that it tilts to the left. He can move it and turn it, but no matter what it seems to still tilt to the left and if you mess with it, he doesn't like that. Not because it hurts but because he seems to like that his world is tilted. But yesterday I laid him down on his tummy and realized that his torso looked a little curved. We read about this disorder called Torticallis and that it could be my thoughts began to race. I am trying to trust the Lord but it is so hard when I see other babies and they are holding their head up so good, and then I look at my precious little lamb and he is not. I know he can because he has done it before...but for some reason he is not right now. So many reason run through my mind, and I am very anxious to figure out a solution. We have a chiropractor appointment tomorrow, and I have a call into his ped., so hopefully we can get the ball rolling on this soon. But then Saturday night Izzy didn't sleep very well, Sunday I got him up from his nap (shorter than usual) and he had a runny nose! Yes, my little guy had gotten a cold. And Joel woke up with something too. But we have started some home remedies, and we seem to be stopping this cold in it's tracks. We are praying that it only gets better and not worse. But we have been popping the pills (vitamins) and it is costing us some pretty big bills, but hey, that's the cost of health. I praise the Lord for the funds, and pray that He continues to provide!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Milestones and Miracles

I subscribe to the magazine Real Simple. I love it! It is one of my guilty pleasures that my husband so graciously allows me to have. In one of the recent magazines, they were announcing there second annual life lesson writing contest. You could enter an essay about when you realized that you had grown up and have a chance to win multiple prizes, one of which was two round trip tickets to NYC and 3,000 dollars! I decided that I could do this. Then I thought..."but I don't feel grown up yet." Then I realized that yes, I was grown up and I knew when I had reached that point. I would like to share with you my essay about Milestones and Miracles in my life.

Milestones and Miracles

“I won’t grow up, I grow up, I don’t want to go to school, just to learn to be a parrot, and recite a silly rule” rings in my ears as I remember dancing around cleaning house with my siblings, listening to the soundtrack of Peter Pan. I grew up in a little three bedroom house with seven siblings. I am the third oldest, which gave me two older sisters to help take care of me and also five younger siblings for whom at times I was responsible. Our parents did an excellent job of dividing household chores and tasks among the eight of us.  Along with that they instilled in us the importance of self-governance and a solid work ethic so that we would carry out our responsibilities without being asked over and over.  Thankfully my parents also encouraged us to be kids - to play make believe and giggle to our hearts content. Today all of us sit around reminiscing and laugh at the many memories we made together in our younger days.

For years my dad has taught in public schools, but ironically my parents chose to home school to ensure that they passed their Biblical world view on to us. Along with all the standard academia, we were taught character and how to live in harmony with one another. Looking back it seems that the things we were taught then aren’t normally learned until later in life. 

It seems that life sets milestones before you whether or not you are ready.  Regardless of my state of readiness, these milestones always have a way of growing me up in one way or another.  Milestone number one: my oldest sister got married.  This was the first major family change.  As Megan left our home to be with Chris, we all had to grow up a little. Out of all the siblings, Megan knew me the best. Now, I was forced to stand on my own more and begin to establish my own identity. Chores and responsibilities were shuffled around as we all had to fill the gap Megan left.  In our army of siblings, I was then promoted to “second in command.”

Upon graduating from high school, I found abilities in myself that I never knew I had. I discovered Kindermusik (©), and took the training to become a certified educator. This was a springboard into teaching private piano lessons, which I have done now for the past seven years.  Through these experiences, I learned so many things about myself. I learned how to work with other people (other than my huge family), and how to keep order and set guidelines for my students. I also gained a greater appreciation for my family. They were always there to offer advice and a listening ear.

During the summer of 2004 my family bought some land thirty miles away from town as I knew it.  After twenty years of living in the city, county life and all the bugs and dirt, proved to be a difficult transition for me. Looking back, I wish that I had rejoiced more in this step towards my parents’ dream and pouted less about what I didn’t like. Life was now busier. Going to work in the morning meant packing for the entire day and coordinating my schedule with the needs of my other siblings. I soon found myself completely discontented and longing to get out of the house, instead of doing my part to bring my family closer together. It was during this period of my life where I began to understand what contentment really meant.

But living so far away from everything, or so it seemed, didn’t keep me from meeting the man of my dreams. The wedding day came, which would be the next big milestone in my life. After almost two years, of dreaming, planning and preparing for this day, I finally got to marry my prince. A year ago I would say that this was the point where I had finally become all grown up. But soon I would find that to not be true. Married life took us through many hardships that would prepare me for the biggest, most life changing event of all.

The following summer, we found out that our apartment was infested with bed bugs. We began the long battle of dealing with difficult apartment managers, and ridding our place of these horrible sneaky creatures. This led us to desire a real house of our own. House hunting began, and then ended and then house remodeling began, and didn’t end as soon as we would have liked. Once our house was finished, and we had made it a home, I was now ready to start a family. But since my husband wasn’t quite ready yet, I found myself again discontent with my life. I eventually gave this desire over to the Lord, and asked Him to show me His timing by working through my husband. Not too long after that Joel came to me with the desire to begin our family.

After a couple months of trying to get pregnant, the anxiety set in; it wasn’t happening like I thought it would.  I found myself all tied up in knots wondering what was wrong and discontent again with the circumstances that were not within my control. I realized, nearly too late, that I was living my life constantly looking forward to the next thing. Tears began to flow as I realized the regret that I would feel if I didn’t enjoy this precious time that I had alone with my husband before we had children. I realized that I needed to enjoy the now, but not get so comfortable that I wouldn’t be willing to accommodate change. Reaching this state of mind was incredibly difficult but it saved me! I began enjoying my life the way it was because, by the grace of God, I was now truly content with my life. Then the day came: we were pregnant!

The following months of preparation, eating, dreaming, picking a name and setting up the nursery were so wonderful. At times I would feel overwhelmed and frantically wonder if we had made the right decision to get pregnant. Each time my husband would confidently assure me that we had. The day finally came: labor pains began and didn’t stop.  We knew we would have our baby that day! At 3:31 pm on June 18th 2009 I officially grew up. I looked at my husband leaning over our baby with camera in hand and turned to my mom and said “I did it!” I had given birth to a perfect little miracle! Those years of thinking that I was a grown up and deserving of one thing or another all seemed so insignificant compared to the little human life that had been created inside of me.

No longer am I the little girl that once played dress-up and cared for my dolls, I now have the ultimate privilege of caring for and nurturing my own real baby. I know that there will be other milestones in my life, but this was that moment that officially started my years of being all grown up.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Grace, Grace, Marvelous Grace

Yesterday, my husband was invited to the OU football game. I encouraged him to go because I knew that he would want to, but inside I didn't want him to go because I didn't want to spend all day Saturday by myself. So I started feeling sorry for myself and thinking off all the fun things that Joel has gotten to do lately, and forgetting all the fun things I have been able to do as well, like when Joel babysat Izzy while I went and spent the whole evening with my girlfriends. So I complained. That made Joel feel bad and so he decided that he needed to reward me for all my hard work. By that time I had realized my wrong, and apologized for it, but he still wanted to surprise me with something. This started a whole big discussion about how I didn't want him to because I had complained and didn't deserve anything, and that I wouldn't enjoy it fully because I had gotten it by complaining, but he kept saying how he had forgiven me and that he was NOT doing it because I complained but because he loved me. We went back and forth like this, and I was really struggling. I knew that he had forgiven me, but I was unable to forgive myself. Joel kept saying "Grace, babe, it's grace." Finally I gave in, and allowed him to "bless" me, as he put it. There are so many times that I mess up in a day, not to Joel, but to my Heavenly Father, but He forgives me every time. So many times I have a hard time forgiving myself because I am so disappointed in myself for messing up AGAIN. But I am sure that He just looks down, and says "Grace, my child, grace." And reminds me that I don't DESERVE anything, but He chooses to bless me just because He loves me. Thank you Joel for being a picture of Christ in my life. I love you!

Oh and the surprise??? Nails! I have been wanting to get my nails done for awhile, and so he treated me to some beautiful nails...for now at least. They look gorgeous, and I feel dainty and beautiful!

Meet me at the Fair!

Fall is here and so is the Tulsa State Fair. I really don't care to much for the fair except seeing all the nice cars and getting in them and dreaming about owning one one day, and smelling all the yummy, greasy, fattening foods that make your mouth drool and your heart sad that you can't spend 10.00 on dip 'n' dots. I grew up going to the fair, but we were never able to ride the rides or buy the food. We would catch the acrobats or feel the warm bubbly water in the display hot tubs, pick out which car we wanted, walk through the houses that were on display, or visit the smelly animal barn where we got to pet all the exotic animals. One year we came home with those scrunchy shoe laces, you know the ones; they come in all different colors and they make it so you don't have to tie your shoes. All you have to do is tug and pull and struggle to pull your shoes on! Well, the "not tying your shoes" part caught my mom's attention. Even though we were never able to ride the rides, or eat the food, the fair and spending time with family was always something fun to look forward to. So needless to say, it is a must do for the fall, just like going to a football game. Last year, Joel and I went before we knew I was pregnant, so this year I wanted to take Izzy. So we bundled ourselves up and headed out. We got there, and drove around looking for a parking space for at least 20 min. The place was packed...did everyone decide to go on Wednesday night??? Finally we MADE a parking space, prayed that our car wouldn't get towed, loaded up the stroller, put Izzy's pumpkin hat on and head out. The whole reason we really wanted to go was to get a funnel cake. I told Joel that I wanted to go to the fair, but I wasn't going to torture myself this year with all the smells, so we had to get SOMETHING to eat! So we SPLIT a funnel cake. All in all it was a grand time. We danced to country music, laughed at Israel laughing, and enjoyed the crisp cool weather...and our funnel cake. Izzy was a perfect baby, even in the cool weather. Our car was still there when we got back to it, and our home was warm as it welcomed us back after a very fall evening.

Happy Fall!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

When it rains, it pours

Do you ever feel like nothing exciting is happening in your life, you are just going from one normal thing to another normal thing, until all of a sudden BAM! Everything happens at once? That is what this story is about. This week has been pretty normal, nothing to really write home about, until today...Thursdays seem to be when it all happens, at least right now. I woke up to my little Izzy fussing at 6:00, when he wasn't supposed to get up till 7:00 (haha), and let him fuss and doze till 6:30, when I reluctantly rolled out of my warm bed to start another day. Joel left with the intention of returning around 11:00 so that I could go to lunch with Megan my sister. So I busied myself sweeping and mopping, and straightening up my messy house so as not to embarrass myself in front of my quests. For I was going to have tea! I was so excited to get cleaned up and have my house clean, since it was raining, and then get out some tea cups, and brew a hot pot of coffee to serve with some chocolate! What better thing to do on a rainy day! Unfortunately Joel accidentally forgot about coming back home, but it was probably for the better since by that time it was pouring rain, and Izzy was finally asleep after not much of a morning nap. So 2:00 came and one of my quests arrived. Then the excitement began. I got a call from my other guest, and dear friend, who had been in a car accident and was just a mess. She had her baby with her and everyone was okay, but of course it startled her. So my friend and I jumped in her car to go over and help her out. I rushed out of the house without the diaper bag and without...a house key. I have been without one for awhile, but I have always had the garage opener, but since Joel had the car, I had neither. But I didn't realize this until we got back home. The babies were finally asleep, and the whether was not looking so bright, and we were locked out of our house. I called Joel, and was thankful when he said he would come to our rescue and finish out work at home. So out of desperation to try to salvage what was left of this afternoon, I took my friend to this darling little chocolate shop in downtown Broken Arrow. It started pouring just as we got there. We had a lovely time sitting by the window sipping our coffee and eating our delicious piece of chocolate. It was an absolutely perfect red shoes moment, and...I was wearing my red shoes!

4:30 pm, Joel was home, and Izzy had eaten and was lying on the floor playing, when I looked down and he had rolled onto his side! I squealed in delight and Joel ran for the video camera. He started recording, and Izzy rolled all the way over, from his back to his stomach! He still hasn't figured out how to get his arm out from under him, so we had to help him with that once he was all the way over, but he did it!

                           This is him in the process of rolling over!
It was so exciting. He is growing up so fast. He is starting to laugh more, and not just when we tickle him, and now he is rolling over! Oh how fun, but oh how it makes me kinda sad. But I will enjoy this stage just as I have the others. I love being a mom, a wife, and a this was a perfect red shoes day...even with the little mishaps, that made me laugh at myself just to keep me from crying.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

This and That

Have so many things happened to you over a short period of time, and you say "oh I could blog about that, or I could journal that", but then it never happens because life keeps happening, and then when you do have time to sit down and reflect you have forgotten all the events that you were going to document! Frustrating to say the least. So, I will do my best. This week I have had off from teaching and it has been wonderful! Monday was a crazy day because I do group lessons on the last Monday of every month (then I get the rest of the week off). But this Monday was even crazier than a normal crazy Monday because our pediatrician wanted to see Izzy that day. I had called in on Friday saying that he was favoring one side over the other, and he kept slumping his head to the left and leaving it there. He wouldn't let us move it either without some fuss, so it was kind of worrying me. Not wanting to wait any longer I said that we could come in, knowing it was going to cut it really did. I got home, and I had students already waiting for me. Of course they all understood, and we had a wonderful group lesson. Tuesday, Israel decided that he didn't want to go to the eye doctor so he started to hold his head up really well, and had ever since! It is amazing...the little peanut! Wednesday I got my new camera! Here are some of the first photos that I took. My favorite is the one with Izzy and his pumkin hat!!

                                                              Izzy sporting his OSU shirt!

                                                               Adorable pumpkin hat!!!

Thursday started out a wonderful day, Israel was doing great, and then we decided to leave the house. Normally this is not a problem, except that these days it is harder to get anywhere with a 16 pound baby in a car seat! But...this day would be different. We were exiting off the highway onto I-44, and traffic was heavy. I had to stop pretty quickly, while putting a paci in Izzy's mouth. I noticed the car behind me was pretty close and hoped that he wouldn't hit me. But the car behind him couldn't stop, and it was a domino affect. Israel started screaming which scared me, so I pulled over, jumped out, and got him out. Thankfully he was just fine. After about an hour, we were on our way with nothing but a sore neck and back for me. Friday morning, Joel and I went to Panera as usually, and then I took him to work. On the way home, I heard that Kendra had gone into labor! 8 days early!!! That whole day was spent in anticipation waiting for THE call. I jumped at every call from my family, until finally Shawn called to say that Michael Henry had been born. What a fun evening we had seeing the tiny little new bundle of joy!

My new little 6 lb 9 oz nephew! Michael Henry

Friday night after spending time at the hospital, Joel and I came home and put Israel to bed and had our second Friday night trying a new recipe and cooking it together. It was Tequila-lime chicken (the alcohol cooks out of course) with a cilantro/red onion/pepper/hot sauce mix piled high on top!  Here it is!

With Mexican rice on the side!

So that was my crazy week, and of course you can tell since it is Monday again, and I am just now getting this out! But it was a fun week (except for the wreck) Chow.