Thursday, January 31, 2008

Cute story

Tonight at dinner we were all visiting as a family, and I proceeded to ask various kids if our new pastor has come in to visit any of their classes or choirs, etc.?

ME: stated, oh yes, he came to see us,

S: yes, he came in Summit (children's worship gathering on Wed. nights), and he asked a question and I knew the answer. He was very proud of me.

Myself: Oh how good, what was the question?

S: Well I don't really remember, but something hard like "who was Ruth's mother?"

ME: I know, I know, Kanga!!!

J: No, not Roo's mother, RUTHHHHH's mother,

ME: OH!!! . . . . . Who's that?

Family: erupts in laughter, even ME laughs!!!

They say the cutest stuff!!!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

That was Harsh!!

Okay, looking back on my blog yesterday, I must apologize for being a little harsh. J told me he read it and thought, "wow", "it really wasn't that big of a deal". I think as mom's though, we know each step it takes to brush teeth, do laundry, cook a meal, so for someone to somehow imply in the tiniest way someone else does my job for me hit a nerve. ( I guess you could tell)

Since I have been so negative and frustrated with my teenagers lately, I felt I must take a positive spin on things and explain how we do manage to make it through a day. Even though I put up with 5, yes FIVE, teenage girls, that is 10 extra hands that help with a lot. They can all do their own laundry, help cook the meal, dress barbies when I am swamped, do and read their own homework, drive a car ( well 1), take car of their own hygiene, and play with the little ones for me anytime. I must say without them, this home would not run down to a science as it does. They do help a lot, so J and I must not take all the credit, they do a lot.

So I guess in every hard and difficult situation, we must look at the positive, I know God gave them each to me for their own individual reasons and circumstances, and because HE knew I would need their help. So for that, thanks girls!!!

When M and M came to live with us five years ago, M told her caseworker that she wanted to live somewhere that had a baby. ME was 2 months old, M immediately became a surrogate mother to her, held her, rocked her, walked her up and down the hallways, and even helped me get her on a bottle. Those were some hard and trying days and now she is a professional babysitter. See, God uses our situations down the road even when we don't know why He has put us where we currently are. When little J came along all the girls were well trained and were a big help with him, they would all do flips if we had another baby, they simply love it. But, trust me, there will be no more babies, maybe more children later, but NO BABIES!!! So, for all their help with my little ones, I am grateful. But once again, they are not our hired professional nannies. I feel they want to help because they know in their heart it is a small way they can repay us for what they have been given in life, a second chance.

Now, . . . that's better. (smile)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

I need to vent again!!

I guess my blog has become a way for me to verbalize my frustrations, so sorry for those that want cute, funny stories, but these days I am needing to explain some of my current frustrations. Over lunch, my husband shared with me that at a local bakery, someone mentioned, "you always told me y'all ran that home by yourselves, but we heard y'all have all kinds of help." Someone who barely knows us proceeded to tell these people that we have a nanny for every child, housecleaners, and all kinds of tutors. Well, I'll be!!! I don't know why this makes me so mad, I guess my pride is hurt a little. I know my credit/rewards are in heaven, but part of my human flesh wants a little more credit for what I do. I know and confess that is sinful and prideful, but I work VERY hard. I do not like it at all when false things are told about me. That is my major pet peeve!!! Especially by someone I have never even talked to.

So let me set the record straight for all of you who are curious. These children are our children. They live with is 24/7 just like your children. My husband and I are not staff in a group home, we are the parents. We have no staff that come in and out or sign in for their shift!!! We have two tutors, one comes five days a week for 2 hours a day and one comes 6 hours a week for math help only (high school math, I do need help with). That's it. I have one sitter a week that watches my youngest, and he goes to her house. I have no hired nannies. My children and My husband and I are the housekeepers, we are allocated NO funding for housecleaning, as per our beneficiary, the children are to learn to do this themselves. EVERY Saturday morning for 5 years we have Saturday clean. I am the nanny, laundress, housekeeper, cook, chef, personal shopper, royal bath giver, calendar keeper, receptionist, appointment confirmationist, nurse, counselor, jury, judge, and the MOM. ( just as many of you wear many, many hats, I do too) And I am sorry, but I want some credit for that, so for those of you that think we have it easy because of where we live or who we work for, this is hard work. REWARDING, BUT HARD!!!

Okay I feel better

Monday, January 28, 2008

Okay, just kidding, I had a lot to do today!!!

I looked back to see how I started my day, and I acted so flippant as if I had nothing to do.

Here's what a day in my life consists of:
Big kids to school
three dressed in 100th day costumes-what would they look like in 100 years ( one as 108 year old woman, 2 as "future people" with aluminum foil accessories?)
baby gift for a teacher wrapped
muffins baked since I had nothing else to send for preschool snack
dress myself
dress little ones, feed little ones, etc.
drop off at preschool
call the bank in the car
oops, ran a red light
teeth cleaned at dentist, yeah me, no cavities!!
work out-very quickly
grocery store-bill $271 ( just for the week)
eat lunch in car-sliced turkey and double fiber bread sandwich in car line
come home, unload $271 worth of groceries-alone!!!
2 preschoolers now jumping in leaves
new sugar spills on tile floor, sweep it up
preschoolers still in leaves out front
change a diaper
finally shower and dress for the day
put one down for a nap
pick up the house, put away laundry
dry hair finally
start filling out re-enrollment for school for NINE!!!
lay down on couch for literally 6 minutes
speak briefly with tutors for plans for the week and next week
kids come home-unload lunch boxes, get snacks, started on homework
quickly speak to my hubby-kiss-kiss
dress one for dance class
send hubby and one off for dance and pick ups elsewhere ( dance, wrestling)
start spaghetti and salad for dinner
check emails briefly while dinner is cooking
get up one from a nap while cooking
clean out old papers from computer desk and my desk quickly!!!
get dinner on the table, feed 9 that were home for dinner then!!
Hubby is at meeting at church, so tonight we watched Nanny McPhee while we ate, I gave in!!!
visit with in-laws after dinner once they brought one home from dance
start baths for 5 little ones-bathe, pjs on, lay out school clothes
lunches made
4 in bed
text hubby begging him to bring home a Decaf Mocha-Lite Frappucino!!
last little one in bed
back on the computer

And I thought I didn't have too much to do today!!

Thank you Lord for ordering my day even when I think I don't have much to do, I know my purpose today was to run and organize a crazy home of 13 people, lots of tasks, but all for my goal of making sure it all gets done.

Behold, I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, a plan to prosper you, but not to harm you. Jeremiah 29:11

Good Morning

I don't have much to say or any funny stories this morning, but just wanted to sign in and say Good Morning.

We have been pretty swamped lately, and I just haven't had as much blog time. J went out of town last weekend, so I feel I am just coming to the surface from that. I am currently spending some of my computer time searching for details on Breckenridge. We are leaving the 6-10 of Feb. Those that read my blog regularly may remember my sweet husband (who was sick for most of the Christmas week) secretly planned a trip snow skiing for my Christmas present. We have never been, so we are finding all the great restaurants and things to do while we are there. Any tips out there?

We have a pretty full week again, so I just wanted to tell everyone I am still here, we are still alive and kicking, and have a great week!!!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Teenage Girls!!!

Ugh, I need to vent a little. Trust me though, I will be careful and my girl's security is entrusted to me, I know that. BUT we have FIVE teenage girls from the ages of 13-18, yes five. Lord, help me, and that is not a slang term, I am literally praying as I type that.

The gossip, the slander, the lies, the name calling, the borrowing and not returning, the tone of voice, the just ugh of it ALL. I guess I now know God's Divine planning in having us work as youth directors before we started all of this. At that time we also had a core group of girls that we worked with. Also, in college I worked as an intern for a youth group one summer, and my main job was to conduct and lead a Bible Study with high school girls. I didn't even want to be a youth minister or worker, I already knew I was going to be a young elementary school teacher. But God prompted me that summer in that direction. If I had only known then what I know now, whew. It wears me out!!! (those that know my voice can hear my tone)

Last week, our family verse I placed on the dry erase board as the family exits the house was Ephesians 4:29 (thanks p. y. o. for that one) It says:

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 be beneficial to those who listen!!

Ooh, that's a biggie, even speaking of myself here. Do I have unwholesome talk coming out, uh, yes, the verse says do not let ANY. Gossip, slander, bad words, nothing. Now, I know we are saved by Grace and not of works, but due to the fruit of Christ in us, we should live in obedience to HIM. So, it's time I start setting a better example to these girls, because let me tell you, there is some unwholesome talk down that girl hallway!!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Back into our Routine

Just a check-in to post that we are finally back into a nice, steady routine. Christmas and the New Year have come and gone and we are finally slowing down our pace. Everyone is back in school now and things are nice for me. I loved having everyone home for a while, but it is nice to have the old routine back. Somehow things just flow smoother and calmer when we have it.

J and I are even headed to the mountains for a marriage retreat with our Sunday School class. Thanks in advance to Nana and Papa for keeping the kids. We are looking forward to a nice getaway. We haven't been anywhere alone since September so it should be nice to be away.

Dance, Drama, Wrestling, school, church, etc. somehow the busyness is nice to have back and keeps us going.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

What to do with all those Christmas Cards?

I just wanted to share a cute idea of something we do with our Christmas cards. Each new year once we have taken all the cards down, every night at dinner we will select a child or two to pull one card or two and pray over that family. We ask God to bless that family for the next year, watch over them, and protect them. It is a great way to remember those that thought of us at Christmas by sending us a card, but I also feel like I have done something special for each family.

Just thought I would share what we do!!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Fun 24 hours!!!

New Year's Day morning, well around 11 AM, we arose after a full night at the CFA Bowl the night before. The kids strolled in slowly, and as I checked my usual weather report for the day, I noticed snow in the forecast for the Smoky Mountains. We have an annual tradition of at least one winter trip north to "chase" snow. We stay in our usual cabins we have found (, the best cabins ever. Why? Well, they each have their own hot tub, game room, and lots and lots of space for the kids.

New Year's Day, as Jonathan returned from errands (around 12 now), I simply stated, "What if we loaded everyone up, rented a cabin for the night, and found snow?" He said, "Okay". So I said, "Okay". Now understand, we never, ever, ever do anything that is not planned or on some kind of agenda, even if it's my head, we plan everything. By 3:oo we were loaded up and headed north. We arrived by nightfall and the snow didn't start until after midnight. ( just in time to watch the SHUGA Bowl, Go Dogs!!!) We got only around an inch, but at least we saw it!! But the kids had plenty of entertainment for the next 24 hours. A pool table, air hockey, a pinball machine, a movie theater for 15, Galaga, and a golf arcade game, Oh yeah, I can't forget the hot tub. I must add that this morning it was around 18 degrees and they all got in!!!! I hope we all don't get sick. We rushed home this evening and went straight to bed, and it is back to school tomorrow.

Happy New Year!!!!