January 31, 2011

All In a Morning

{Greg is couch bound....the boys like to read him bed time stories}

I have a love~hate affair with Mondays. Monday is a beginning....the week, maybe new habits, new ideas. Monday is also sometimes overwhelming. Yep, overwhelming. I may feel weighed down by errands , goals I've set, and getting back to the weekly routine. I've noticed there is a big difference in our weekend routine vs. weekly one.

We started with a good breakfast for all.....a great little devotion on self-control {to which one of my dear sons informed me that I lacked a bit yesterday-he was correct}.....and a sunny day.

{more couch snuggling}

Slowly, my perfect little morning changed. There was some grumbling about how "boring" school work was.....there was a bit of rolling around on the ground because someone was soooo tired {not me}....and there was a clogged toilet....make that 2 clogged toilets. And, just to make that clear.....we only have 2 toilets. There was me running between 2 little boys struggling with math.....back and forth I trotted. Once math was complete....there was a collective shout of joy.

I've managed to unclog 1 toilet.....I may have used a wooden fork.....but there were no witnesses so I'm not confirming that fact {if it were true....I can quarantee that the fork is now in the garbage}. Though, I can confirm that I am a pro at turning the little water knob at the base of the toilet. As soon as that water starts rising...I'm there to hopefully stop it.

Have you ever been so proud to remember an important person's birthday {father in law}....only to realize that you are actually a day late? Me too.

We have more to do.....and a busy afternoon......where I may be asked to pray out loud in a group setting {gulp}. Out of my comfort zone, for sure. Yep, I'm not really a master of prayer. The Lord and I have our own little language....He gets me. I'm not sure if my out loud prayers....in a group setting.....make sense, but I'm surprisingly okay with that.

I'm not really a master of math....or toilets either.

January 28, 2011

Sharing Our Story

You all know that I'm an open book....if I have not shared about something specific...you could just ask and I would/will share. I feel strongly about sharing because.....really.truly......I know that one person's story can help another person's situation. We need to encourage and help each other. Whether it is about the bump in our marriage many years ago.....mistakes I've made....my pre-knowing Jesus days.....moving from our newly built home.....or our adoption....I don't mind talking about it. 

I have been encouraged by so many other people....by reading and talking with other's about their life situations. In fact, just this morning I was so encouraged....reading about someone else who is moving from their dream home to a new surrounding. Oh, how I could relate. Don't we all desire to know that we are not alone? That someone understands?

As you also know, we never....ever....thought that we would struggle with infertility. Coming from a large family...I thought I was the Italian fertile Mertile. I believe that is why I kept trying....year after year...to conceive. But God! The Lord had another plan....I believe it was his plan for me from the start. Adoption! Glorious, wonderful.....adoption.

Our adoption story......part 1, part 2, and part 3.  You all know I like to use my words....and it's not a story that could just fit on one page. Whichever path has brought you to the road to adoption....be encouraged.

January 26, 2011

Girl Obsessed

I'm a girl obsessed....really and truly. I woke up this morning thinking about colors....white, green, and blue. I went to bed last night thinking about our next move....and how I am so beyond excited to get this {rental}house in order. Start fresh. That's my new favorite word....fresh.

The boys were snuggling with me.....so I shared my thoughts of....white, green, and blue. The boys said they were thinking of ......red.
I told them that they could have red.....I'll stick to my green and blue.

                                             But, I would accept some orange, too.

I just want.....fresh, clean, and organized.

We have a lot of black furniture....so I thought that this might work....

Goals are good, right? A girl can dream.

January 25, 2011

Just Another Day

Today was a day full of ideas. It's funny how the best intentions can be put aside so quickly. I woke with grand ideas.....which slowly were replaced by simple ideas. That's ok. In fact, it was just fine. The best part was that I didn't get discouraged because I didn't accomplish everything I wanted to. Tomorrow is a new day. We were low on groceries....and it's just too cold to go anywhere....so I made some of my special cookies.  
{these were touched very quickly}

 They are special because.....I don't follow a recipe. I'm a recipe phobe. No two cookie recipes are ever alike.  This batch contained......almond meal, flax meal, oats, pumpkin pie spice, semi sweet chips, brown sugar, oat bran, fiber cereal(really),butter, vanilla, eggs, and baking soda. I didn't measure. You can just throw some of each in a bowl, mix, and bake. See...isn't that easy? And they were really good.
{I wish the dr. would have touched his back....and fixed it}

Greg's MRI showed a protrusion in his disc. They said of all the disc issues you could have....this was one of the easiest to treat.The doctor said that a couple of injections and he should be back to normal. My only question for the doctor.....then why didn't you give him the injection when he went to discuss his results last Friday? Why did my poor husband have to suffer another week? Seriously. They had him come all the way in just to tell him the results and to come back in another week. Makes no sense to me. This is about as upright as he's been....and he forced himself straight for this picture. Poor guy is seriously hunched over....all the time. But....we are thankful that he should be better in a few days. Hopefully.

January 21, 2011

Beat Boxing

I love going through my photo file and finding things I forgot or never even knew about. This video falls into the forgotten file category. The boys went through a phase of beat boxing.

Beat boxing is the art of making your mouth sound like an instrument....going back and forth with your partner. Or something like that. The boys did a combination of rapping and beat boxing.....Greg even got involved. I'm sure it's because I'm their mother, but I find this very amusing...in a .....bop, bop, boop, boop, ......way.  ahem....that was my loose attempt at beat boxing....onto the video....

Friday Morning Breakdown

Not an actual breakdown....but a break down of the morning.

Of course, the one day I have an appointment scheduled very early in the morning.....is the one day that we get a lot of snow. Enough snow that it causes driving and parking to be more difficult. I love my new doctor. I'm thrilled to now have a doctor and dentist that we can feel good about. She told me that because my endometriosis is so extensive I need to watch for it to possibly obstruct my organs...*yikes*.....and I have an arrhythmia. Of course, this is all new news to me. I don't really like to hear the words obstruct and organ in the same sentence. Sounds messy. Did I mention I love my new doctor? She's so calm and .....well....smart. Great qualities in a doctor. :)

Of course, thankfully.....Greg was able to stay home with the boys so that I could go to above mentioned appt.When I arrive back home.....he is on a conference call and the boys are playing balloon baseball. For some crazy reason I then decide to nest......by doing some quick super cleaning, re-arranging. Exactly one month before our move.....and still not sure where we are moving. I'm excited and hopeful.

The fact that it is super sunny outside.....and Friday...are added bonuses and contributing factors to above mentioned....excited and hopeful.

*Greg is feeling better....he has his own doctor appointment today {with his orthopedic dr} . Of course, we are very anxious to learn what the MRI reveals.

Wow, you know you are getting older when most of what you write is about medical stuff.

January 18, 2011

Decisions, stir crazy, and wings


Do we go for space and sacrifice beauty......or beauty and sacrifice space? We found a decent townhome to rent, but it's dreary and ugly. The inside isn't awful.....the outside is pretty bad. Which is weird because it's in a good town, good location. It has a pool...that's a bonus.

Or, do we stay in our newer complex and have less space? We are getting close to our move date and still frantically looking for a house to rent. The good thing is that it's just for the year. This time next month we will be packing....yippeee! I'm looking forward to the change.

They boys are going a bit stir crazy.....running around, some teasing between brothers, more running around....which is making me a bit crazy. 

Greg saw a guy from our church on Man Vs. Food (food network show).....he was at a restaurant at the shore.....eating really hot wings(ridiculous hot). We can't wait to go try the restaurant out....I'll skip the wings.

January 16, 2011

Our Days

Friday brought an MRI. He said it was painful, but it's over. Now we wait for some answers. He's been on the couch all weekend....hurts to move. He has a mini business trip tomorrow....he has to go. Praying the pain will ease up...or the steroids will kick in. It's so strange that it was a year ago.....the month before our last move......that he had this problem. Same timing. Weird.  Hoping to get some answers.

{snap circuits with Dad....December}

Saturday brought basketball for the boys. It's a non-competitive fun basketball thing. The boys requested non competitive. They didn't like the more competitive soccer program over the summer. Soccer practices were great, the coaches were great....the teasing from the other kids...not so great. The twins would get stage fright during the games. They would almost freeze on the field.  All the yelling and activity from the side lines freaked them out a bit. Practice, good. Games, not so good. A few kids started teasing them about it. Ummm, we are talking 8 yr olds. So wrong. Ross and Sam told us that they didn't think they deserved to be on the team (because they had a hard time with the games). The coaches couldn't have been nicer.  Basketball will be for fun....and they said it was fun. They have the same coaches from soccer. Awesome.
(side note...during the week, the twins are part of a cross training homeschool gym class. The coach told me that the first day there was a boy struggling. He said Ross and Sam helped the boy. Melted my heart.)


Saturday also brought a new haircut for me. It's fine. Watched The Way We Were with Robert Redford and Barbra Streisand. Great movie, tear filled couple of hours.

Sunday brought....well, technically it's still here....making homemade pasta sauce, doing errands and watching football. Not much organizing going on.

January 11, 2011

Back to His Pain

....or maybe I should have written....he has a mess of back pain. I learned some interesting things the past 2 days.

If your husband wakes up and tells you that he cannot stand up straight and that his past back/leg pain is back again and you proceed to call your primary care physician......you may be told that they will not see you and you should now call an orthopedic specialist. If you then call  3 separate orthopedic specialist's and 2 tell you that they have no time for you, one might suggest that they will not see you and that you must go to a comprehensive pain specialist(or something?).  If you then google local pain specialists creating a list of phone numbers......you just might stay on the phone for hours, forgetting to brush teeth, eat food, or tend to children.

If after hours on the phone....and reading many really bad reviews....some even scary...you then decide to call your insurance company for suggested names......you just might be given a list that contains a doctor who is currently in prison for fraud.

After calling your insurance company back and explaining that each name led to a brick wall......you ask if a name that you just found (Dr. Martins) was "in-network". After being told that the doctor is indeed in-network....you might be told that he actually has 3 offices and numbers. After calling the first number you might be told that the office has never heard of Dr. M. When calling the 2nd number.....you just might be told that this is in fact.....Dr. Martino's office and not Dr. Martin's.....you might start to question the capability of your insurance company and start wondering......"if we now live near a huge, major city....why can we not find a simple in network doctor for our problem?".

But.....if you do happen to reach Dr Martino's office you just might start to wonder if the wild goose chase, phone glued to your ear drama happened just so you could find Dr Martino and not Dr Martins....but then you also might wonder if you really should be seeing Dr Martins and not Dr Martino?

(where his back is right now....same couch...different house)

After much confusion.....crying in pain from husband.....and thinking that we should just go to the emergency room and be done with this craziness.......you might decide to see Dr Martino after all. 

After appointment with Dr Martino....your husband just might be so glad to have oral steroids, pain med's and a scheduled MRI....that he can finally rest.  And after all that.....you might be ready for a glass of wine and 1lb of chocolate. Maybe.

January 10, 2011

Self....let's talk

"I say that we must talk to ourselves instead of allowing "ourselves" to talk to us! Do you realize what that means? I suggest that the main trouble in this whole matter of spiritual depression in a sense is this, that we allow our self to talk to us instead of talking to our self. Am I just trying to be deliberately paradoxical? Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself?

Take those thoughts that come to you the moment you wake up int he morning. You have not originated them, but they start talking to you, they bring back problems of yesterday, etc. Somebody is talking. Who is talking to you? Your self talk is talking to you. "

"Now the Psalmist's treatment was this: Instead of allowing this self to talk to him, he starts talking to himself...."why are you so downcast, O my soul?"  he asks.
His soul has been depressing him, crushing him. He stands up and says: "self, listen for a moment, I will speak to you....Why are you so downcast?-why are you disquieted?.....And then you must go onto remind yourself of God.....Who He is, and what God is and what God has done, and what God has pledged Himself to do. Then having done that, end on this great note: 
Defy yourself, and defy other people, and defy the devil and the whole world, and say with this man...."

"I will yet praise Him for the help of His countenance."   

-written by M.L. Jones

This Small Space

I've started the process....a little at a time. I found these little, cloth boxes (with zippers!) at Ikea....only $5.99. I put the boys random toys in them....with labels. I find that the visual {name} helps the boys. Without it, they would probably never open the boxes. The boxes are not beautiful or even cute....but I love that the tops are closed and they keep things organized and that's my goal.

Greg comfortably watched "Superman" while I did my organizing thang. His sciatica is causing him pain again. Praying that he will heal quickly. The last time he went through this....it was not pretty. (the belt laying on the couch and the broken blinds are not pretty either).
Here are some of the plastic boxes that I emptied.....I'm purging all the plastic. I'll use them in the garage....or inside if they can be hidden away . I didn't really keep them out much, but they were starting to accumulate (because of the move).
Another bookcase filled with books.....that will be my next project. Organzing and purging books. I'm finding that if I do it a little at a time....it's far less overwhelming.

I've also realized something about our move.....I don't mind having a small space. What I mind is......not "owning" our home. Not being able to make it our own. I've seen some pretty amazing things done with small living spaces, but when you are renting....there is not much you can do. Though, I have some ideas for our February move {still have not decided where that will be}. Greg met the woman who will be renting out current home....I guess that means it's official, we better start getting ready. 

January 6, 2011

Broken Record

Yep, I am realizing that I'm a broken record. I feel like I'm taking 2 steps forward and one step back......I'm adjusting to our move....and then I fall back again. I think out loud a lot. This blog has been a sort of therapy for me.
I have no idea why I keep writing about my adjustment process and then hit post. I could write and not hit post. It's a way of keeping me accountable to myself. It's my online diary. I'm writing about simplifying.....therefore I must simplify. I guess...or something like that.

There are a bunch of other things going on. Homeschooling, observations, life stuff.  I feel like I'm a broken record....and the record is skipping. It keeps playing the same part over and over. Well, I'm trashing the record....I'm going to diversify.

Since my last post....I have managed to break down a book case and re-organize some things. We ran out to Trader Joe's before the big 4" of snow is to arrive. I am now equipped with salt, sugar, and caffeine. I'm good to go. I bought some healthy things too.....promise. I wanted to post pictures, but blogger has informed me that I have met my quota?? What is that all about?

Starting Here, Starting Now

Well, actually....I started a little while ago, but I'm extra intentional about this start. I'm ready for another purge!

Greg and I were looking at some pictures of our house last night...we both got a bit sad. That house had such great closets....and those closets helped me to keep our home de-cluttered. There was a place for everything...and everything was in its place.

Now....not so much. But, seriously....what more can I get rid of? We already got rid of a bunch of furniture, clothes, toys, stuff. I'm in a mindset where I just want to be minimal. I want to keep what I love....and that's it. It has actually been hard letting go of that favorite sweater from the 90's. Forget that I have not worn it in a few years...it's there if I want to wear it. Right? Wrong! Time to let it go. So, I will once again...go through things and simplify. That has been my favorite word for a while now.

We still have not chosen our next rental....but it will hopefully be a better layout than this one. Picture a hotel suite...with an extra small playroom downstairs. That describes our current home. It's fine....we are together and happy....it's just small. I'm starting to get excited for the next move. It's time.

So, I have a big date with Ikea this weekend. Only thing.....we are supposed to get another snowstorm. Blah!

I guess more sledding will be a good thing.

January 5, 2011

His Bird Friend

So, I was playing around with Greg's computer...and stumbled upon this photo. It seriously had me going.....huh? I think it's a cute picture, but had no idea where it came from. I'm guessing it was during a business trip. Made me laugh....had to share.

January 4, 2011

Shopping: International Style

The other day....we happened upon a couple of international grocery stores. We love international grocery stores. The music.....the food.....
 We have a little routine.....call it a family habit.....if we hear music playing really loud and really fun....we start dancing. How can you not? The little video below shows this little quirk of ours.....Greg meant to take a photo, but instead captured our dance. The music in that particular store was so fun.
I noticed a couple of serious looking men following us around this store.....later realized they were security. Hmmm, wonder why they were following us? It couldn't be because we were dancing and taking pictures?

And Then There Was Snow

 We've been patiently waiting......and then it came with full gusto. Lots of it. We barely made it back from out hometown trip.....driving right into a blizzard. Our new state doesn't seem to handle blizzard very well. Where were the plows? The salt trucks? 
 We had snow pants.....and sleds......and lots of coffee. What else did we need?
 Greg even closed his office.....a rare thing, but necessary as driving was not very good.
 It's all starting to melt.....just in time to get out to the grocery store. Until the next snowfall.....because I'm pretty sure there will be more.

January 3, 2011

It's a New year, it's a new day

Happy New Year!

We have enjoyed our Christmas days so much....having Greg home for many of them was an added bonus. I was trying to savor each and every day. I have many pictures to share, but that will have to wait until I get my computer issues figured out. I have had to use Greg's desktop for a few days....which has actually caused me to not use the computer much. This has been so good! I can't believe how stepping away from the internet has recharged me. On the flip side...I have missed checking in with you all! 

We ran out and purchased a new laptop, but I have not been able to embrace it. I'm not convinced that I am keeping it, so I use it lightly....and have not uploaded any photos. I've had a few epiphanies. I've climbed over a hump I've been stuck behind. Ahhh, feels good. Things just seem a bit brighter. Let me tell you...this is a constant thought process hurdle. My days without internet have allowed me to sort of ......find myself again. I didn't realize it, but I had been weighing myself down with comparisons. I had been thinking I was supposed to be a certain way.....by doing so.....I was not seeing who God is wanting me to be. Me. That's it.
And that is a good thing.

It's a new year......and each day is a new day. I'm going to take each day and really.truly. try to savor it (them).
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