November 30, 2010

Where We've Been

We went home for was an on the go-non stop stuff.....kind of weekend. It feels a bit strange having to "visit" home for the holiday. We ran from place to place and just tried to soak in all that was around us. It felt great to be surrounded by loved ones.....surrounded by people who knew us so well. These pictures don't capture half of our 4 days camera is on it's way I don't pick it up that often.

Good people, good food, good laughs......did I mention good food?

The weekend also brought hard moments.......Greg's grandma had a heart attack the night before Thanksgiving and then another one on Thanksgiving day. Amazingly.....thankfully.....she was home from the hospital on Friday. She is one amazing and special lady. We all just adore her. Thanksgiving day was not the same without her, but we are so glad that she is home again.

Upon arriving back to our "new home"....our sweet neighbors invited us over for lunch the following day. We had tons of laundry....and were just exhausted, but they are just such sweet we said... yes. Unfortunately, their 2 children(baby and toddler) were sick.....and now the boys and I are sick.

The upcoming month may be filled with lots of busy-ness....visitors and visits. I'm not sure what to do about Christmas. I really want to sleep in my own bed, but spending it away from family feels odd. Not sure. We'll do what's best for the boys. Our new life brings new decisions......and on that subject.....we have 2 months to find a new place to live(sent in our non-renewel notice). We are excited and....well......hopeful. I was going to say....worried....but, I've decided to think in a more positive way. what we are.

November 19, 2010

My Favorite Boots

Since my last post(s) was a bit deep......I wanted to head into the weekend with something fun. As we know, because we no longer have a home to decorate....I need to focus my joy of decorating in another direction. Yes, I'm still trying to find ways to make our temporary digs feel like home, but basically....all that means is moving things around...or purchasing storage bins. I currently do not have any favorite home items *sigh*. No biggie....I'm moving boots.

I love, love the look and ease of boots this season. All kinds of boots. I am an equal opportunity boot-er. I love the look of tucking your jeans into boots. Pair that with a long sweater....and I'm pretty sure that will be my uniform this season. So, I've decided to link up with 320 Sycamore Lane and share my list of favorite things boots. I have to add that because I was born with a huge frugal bone in my body {I think I got it from my Nana} each of my purchases were with bargain in mind.

This first pair was my super deal of the month (a couple months ago).....after almost purchasing them online at Target for full price (which was a great price $39.99) I happened to find them while strolling the my size....for $9.98. They are soft like butter and fit perfectly over my jeans..... Love 'em.

This next pair was part of a 2 for ....sort of....package. Again, at Target online. If you purchased 2 pairs, you would get both for 20% off, plus free shipping(I believe they are doing a similar deal now). They are real leather....a sort of strange cognac color, but Greg chose the color....didn't want to make him feel bad by rejecting his input. They were only $39.99 plus 20% off.
I wasn't so sure about these leather boots. Again, Target online....part of that 2 for deal. Originally $ 20% off. Real, thick awesome leather. Probably not as awesome as a Fry boot....but they work for me....especially because I'm pretty hard on my boots. I'm still trying to figure out how to wear these....I sort of feel like an east coast cowboy in them....though they are engineer boots?

{not this exact pair, but very similar}
This last pair was my best boot bargain. They were in my closet and I didn't even know it. That's what moving and storage can do to you....things get hidden or forgotten {I'm working on that by simplifying}. I had purchased these boots years ago. I stopped wearing them because they were a little loose...and just felt awkward. That is....until I tried wearing them over my jeans. They now fit perfect....and basically didn't cost a dime. At least I can't remember what they was that long ago, but guarantee it was a bargain{at least I hope}.

*The best place to find Target boots is onine at  The store does not have the same deals or selection.

UC: Part 2

 When I tell you that I can remember just about every detail of that experience....believe it. I can remember it like yesterday. On the floor.....crying.....crying out to the Lord......and it felt like I was completely surrounded by warmth. I really don't want to speak in "christianese" while describing this experience, but it was just so powerful. From that moment everything attitude or view about everything changed. Because of that moment, I viewed our decision to separate differently....and I became determined to restore things., as I said....I'm not going to go into more detail about all that because it would take pages. I will write aobut it later and give it it's own post.....some pretty crazy stuff happened. Thankfully, I had a great support network via the phone.....being alone in Ohio and ...cold Minneapolis... was an interesting experience.

I'm going to skip all the in-between stuff and get back to why I was writing about this. I'm not sure if I would have asked the Lord into my heart if I had stayed in my my comfortable home, with my comfortable surroundings....not to mention my fun-party lifestyle. Why would I want to change any of that?

Why? Because I had no idea that life could be so much much different.

Ok, so that was a big thing. That move brought a big change. After a whole bunch of stuff (remember the in-between stuff I'm skipping(for now)?) Greg also re-committed his heart to the Lord.....we decided to save our marriage....we decided that were meant to be together....and that we couldn't imagine being with anyone else.  So, then another big thing happened.....we decided to stop our infertility treatments and end our journey traveling from doctor to doctor. We knew that was a road we had worn out....a road that had worn us down. After realizing .....hey, maybe we would never be parents....we amazingly found our way to our precious twins.

Again, I'm fairly certain that the circumstances that led us to our boys....would not have happened if we stayed in our hometown, in our new house, near all that was comfortable, near all whom we loved.

So, all that got me weird that once again......

We had recently moved into our new home....actually lived in it just about the same amount of time as that other house ...from over 10 years ago....and we were also still doing construction on it. We were surrounded by great friends and family....and life was good. We never....ever....ever....thought we would move again...ever.

But....once again.....we did....we have. Makes me think a little. Makes me a little nervous....a little excited. It just all seems so....ground hog day-ish. Didn't we go through that emotional, crazy, wonderful move back home? Weren't we settled? Weren't we supposed to build that house? Were we even supposed to ever move back home?
Greg made a comment once that it seems like the Lord wants us away from our hometown. Not sure why. I do notice that we seem to grow in different ways while we are out on our own "island". We miss everyone so much.....and life sure is different here. Interesting and good, but very different. Different can be good, right?

November 17, 2010

Unexpected Change

I've been trying to get a bit of exercise in. I really notice that my mood is so much better after I've gotten my heart pumping. So, while the boys were playing around our complex play area....I decided to go on a brisk walk around the various courts. There are a number of complex buildings....and a ton of windows facing the play area. I often wonder who is watching and what they must be thinking as they watch me walk in circles.

I like to take that time to make phone calls, pray{talk to the Lord}, and think about things. Something hit me strong during my last walk. Something I had not connected before.

Many years ago, back in the late 90's.....I had an amazing job as a nanny. We had purchased a really neat house in the neighborhood that Greg grew up in.....we had great friends and family around us. Greg had a decent job and everything was going well. We had been totally renovating our new home over a 2 year process.....we were also desperately trying to have a baby. Things were emotional because of that.....but for the most part....things were really good.

But then......things changed. Greg was offered a job in Ohio. A really good job. He really wanted to take the job....I knew that we needed to move was a great opportunity for him and I knew that I did not want to stand in the way of his career. I didn't want to go....I didn't want to leave the family that I nannied for...we had been together for 10 years. I watched their children grow from infants to sweet young girls. But, I also knew that eventually Greg and I would have our own children and.....basically, I knew that I just needed to be ok with move. But, I wasn't ok with it....that's a story for another post. I can say this....I don't believe that I've ever gotten over that move. It still makes me sad to think about what I left.

But.....big but there......some very intense things happened because of that move. Again....I'll save the details of each individual and life changing situation.....but for this post, in a nutshell.....

That move brought us to an even more emotional place in our journey to be have a baby. And just about ruined our marriage. Again, in a nutshell.....about a year after our move to Ohio...and then to Minneapolis....our boxes were packed. Packed for separate moves. Yep, we had reached our emotional end....and were ready to go in different directions. Then something I didn't expect happened....all of that brought me to an ultimate point of being broken....heart and mind. And being filled with constant tears...and being totally alone in a new all brought me to a point of calling out to a God  I didn't know. It caused me to open a book I didn't understand. And it changed my life forever. be continued.

November 16, 2010

My New Combo

No, I didn't say my new condo.....though, that may be in our future. I have finally come to realize something....I make terrible coffee. Maybe not terrible, but it's always either too strong or too weak. And let me tell you....I love a good cup of joe.

Something interesting happens as soon as the weather changes.....and it starts gettting a little chilly outside.....I start to crave...chocolate and peppermint. My seasonal comfort foods. Yes, I do enjoy a good pumpkin latte, but that's a whole 'nother subject.

I happened upon these 3 tasty items at my new favorite grocery store........

{Trader Joe's peppermint cookies}

{Peppermint hot cocoa}
{Trader Joe's instant coffee}

(by the way.....the pic's are all from google images-I'm feeling too lazy to take my own)

I never thought I'd like instant coffee, but the TJ's really is good....I mix it with the cocoa and it's delicious. The can says to put 3 big spoonfuls of cocoa in a mug....of course, I must follow the directions. Add a cookie....or 3 and you have a wonderful, cozy combo.

{I've had many thoughts and situations this week....I just haven't written all my thoughts down yet. I tend to procrastinate in that area....among others. Things are good, learning something new each day}

November 11, 2010

High Hopes

Just what makes that little 'ol ant.....

I have so many things I need to do. I need to simplify some more. This has been a really, truly hard task. I am having a hard time deciding what should go and what should stay. Should stay meaning....what I can't let go of.  I look around our small the way-Greg and I determined that our whole living space is the size of 1/2 of our old playroom.... and I feel like I'm living in a one room school house. Now, that is fine and dandy....and pretty much due to the fact that we homeschool. Creating an environment that is full of learning opportunities....or opportunities for creative play is important to me. I only have a few more years before my little men turn into teenagers. I guarantee that our living space will be very different in a few years. But, these are the days we are in.....and these days are filled with little building things, constructive things, sports things, and books galore.

Thinks he can move that rubber tree plant....

I don't mind living in a one room school house....heck, it's pretty fun. But, I would really, truly love for our one room school house to have some style. I've thought about calling in the HGTV experts to give me a hand, but that wouldn't make sense since we are renting....and moving in a less than 3 months(can you hear the Hallelujah chorus?) So, mentally I know that I need to do something....organize, simplify, get off my butt.....the only problem is that physically I am worn out. I'm once again feeling so incredibly tired that it's disrupting my plans. The mind has a will, but the body says no way.

Anyone knows an ant can't move a rubber tree plant.....

But I am determined....I have high hopes for change. I will eat better, try to exercise(even if that means running around the playground), I will take baby steps, and try to live the thankfulness that I feel in my heart. Each day I am determined to do a little bit more.....and by golly, I guarantee just as we are about to move....I will have our small space filled with style. And of course, then I can start all over on our next space.

She's got high hopes, she's got high hopes. She's Got high apple pie in the sky hopes

* I want to add that I love living in a small space, if I could only get it organized. Less is more!

November 9, 2010

Fighting For Joy

"the state of my space doesn’t reflect the state of my soul."-Ann Voskamp

I can't help myself, another link......because this is too good not to here

November 8, 2010

Two Good Reads

Great post..... Are you enjoying your homeschool journey? 

Another great article..... interesting homeschooling article 

In regards to my boys and myself....the less we have scheduled outside the home, the happier we are. Sammy actually cried "not again!"  the other day because he was tired of leaving the house. For me, after being out all day....I walk in our door and say "ahhhhh, home at last". I want our home.....wherever it may be a place of refuge and rest.

And, if you walked in my house right'd hear Sam and Ross jamming on the keyboard....playing Somewhere Beyond the Sea. Over the weeked we made an impulse purchase....a keyboard with keys that light up to help you learn the songs. It has a ton of pre-recorded songs on of those songs being the above mentioned. There is also a microphone attached.....can you guess who does vocals? A-hem, that would be me. I can't resist....and that song is quickly becoming one of our favorites.

November 5, 2010

Our Own Musical Variety Show

 A new upstairs neighbor moved in this week. There are actually 2 apartments above us.....each contain 2 floors within their apartments. One apartment is over our bedrooms.....the other apartment is over our living space. Below the boys bedroom is our neighbor's garage.....up and down the garage all hours of the night. It makes me crazy. It also sort of makes me uncomfortable having a garage....with a car....right below my boys bedroom. That's just me....just one of my pet peeves.

We've experienced all sorts of different running....what sounded like someone bowling......someone walking on their treadmill. Yep, this is all very new to us. Remember, we moved from the country.....barely a neighbor around. We could be as loud as we wanted....and never worried about someone elses "life" noises being too loud for us.

About the seems the neighbors over our bedrooms favor fast paced latin music. Our new is a big fan of the 70's. As we were eating our lunch.....I suddenly started singing "Bye,Bye, Miss American Pie....drove my chevy to the levy,but the levy was dry...." and then I stopped. The boys looked at me a bit strange and wondered what was this pie I spoke of..... and a chevy? what's a levy? I explained it was a song I used to know...back in the day. On and on it went through the day.....70's song after 70's song....and nowI can't get the melodies out of my head.

I'm counting down the days until we move(within our complex). Though, I'm going to embrace this interesting setting.....this new experience. Sam wondered if it would be rude to hit the ceiling with a broom and exclaim "hey, we are trying to sleep down here".....I suggested that it wouldn't be very neighborly to do so....but then I wondered....where did Sam even get that idea?

And so the weekend begins.....

November 4, 2010

I Have a Special Talent

Maybe it's not a talent....maybe it's my special gift? No. I wouldn't call it a gift or a talent.....though I am very good at it. I'm not even sure my talent/gift/whatever even has a's that special. Personally, I call it....

futinmouthitis  or braindoesntmatchwordsdilema ; definition: When what you are thinking comes through your mouth completely different than you planned. Often, what is said doesn't even make sense or match the conversation....therefore causing the other party to look at you like you are crazy. After being given this look, you later ponder the thought that maybe you are crazy. After contemplating said then decide that the other person is crazy and you fact....very sane. Then, upon arrival of sanity, decide that you don't care what anyone thinks of you and , in fact, you wish you could just be yourself and not worry that your words get misunderstood....or miscommunicated. During this roller coaster thought finally think to yourself......oh the heck with it....I am what I am. (of course until the next time it happens...because there will be a next time).

November 3, 2010

Oct 31, 2010

I've had mixed thoughts about this day for many years. One thing is for sure......we have never trick or treated before. That is, before this year. This was the boy's first year going door to door and bagging their candy.

We've done something different each year.....we've gone out to eat with Grandma and Papa, spent the evening with friends, had fall parties.....or have given out candy, but have not trick or treated. There were years where we gave the boys a choice....and they chose to stay home and give out candy. There were years where we felt that we just did not want to participate. I thought this year would be another year like that. I won't go into details....I know that this day can be controversial in Christian circles.....but, this year we decided to take the boys around our complex.

We put together a couple of Mario and Luigi outfits.....of course....and then the boys and I hit the sidewalk. There is something interesting and special about waiting until your children are 8 years old take them trick or treating for the first time. With each door they were SO enthusiastic. They gave big thank yous....and nice to see you....have a great, I got a Nestle crunch....or a tootsie roll. You would think that each candy was the most special they ever held....or that....each doorstop was the home of a new and special friend. It was priceless.

I don't think I....and most of the people we encountered.....had laughed so hard in a very long time. The boys would stop other children and tell them how great they thought their costumes were.....they would greet each parent with a big hello. Again, it was just so funny.

They enjoyed their candy for most of the next day....and now...they have totally forgotten all about it. They have a huge bowl of candy......which Greg and I have been feasting on.....but the boys have barely had any. Now we are counting the days until Thanksgiving......

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