It’s Day 25 of the #write31days challenge and my 31 Days of Gratitude 2016 and I have a 10 minute breather before I have to leave the house again. It’s a full day with school meetings, helping my MIL with doctor appointments and errands, school pick ups, speech therapy and dentist appointments. I remember in the earlier years of motherhood I longed to get out of the house. These days I long to be able to just stay home and catch up on laundry. Funny how that works.
Anyway, this morning as I was feeding the kids breakfast and packing lunches I looked out the window and saw the sun rising and making gorgeous colors in the sky. We ran out on the deck to snap a photo and although my phone didn’t do it justice, I couldn’t help but stop a moment and just breath in God’s power.
Hours passed and I could feel my nerves starting to fray. I know it is my own fault because I made the mistake of praying to God, “Help me to be more patient. Help me to not be so selfish and self-centered.” God said okay and He and gave me plenty of opportunities to bite my tongue and die to myself and think of others first. Meanwhile, I’m thinking, “Yeah okay, God, you can ease up a bit now. You shouldn’t have too many lesson in one day, ya know.” But deep down I am thankful because as much as I may hate it, I know it is good spiritual exercise for me. I know that it allows me the opportunity to love God and to offer up prayers for people who have been on my heart lately.
I can’t help but think of that sky this morning. As I was busy getting through my everyday tasks there was God’s glory displayed in the morning sky. I just needed to stop and take it in. In the same way God’s power and grace are right there in front of me. I just need to stop and humble myself before Him and admit that I need all the help I can get. He is ready and willing to get me through anything. I am witnessing that today. God has been pouring down his grace and helping me to be more patient and more kind when I needed to be. For that, I am truly grateful. (Now I pray I make it though the second half of the day! ) 😉
A fun weekend with family time and relaxing time when we unplugged and rested.
School field trips and the opportunity to have fun one-on-one time with the kids.
Brian’s good results from his cancer tests/bloodwork.
Brian’s mother-in-law is healing and doing well.
Many special intentions from friends.
Those suffering from hardship, illness, violence and depression.
All pregnant moms (especially family members), those trying to get pregnant, those who have lost their babies and for moms contemplating an abortion.
The souls in purgatory, especially family, friend and those most forgotten.
~ 2 ~
Around the House…
On Friday the boys were off school so I let them help me decorate the house with some fall decor. It looks cute but there are still the endless little piles of clutter around. I feel like I clear one spot and two more pop up to take its place. I have been bagging things to give away so I am hoping that will help. I figure, less stuff means less mess but I’ve got a long way to go. 😉
Family Chit Chat…
Last week Brian had his routine bloodwork to check and see if there were any signs of the cancer returning. I’m happy to say that everything looked good. His red and white blood count was steadily rising and his blood pressure was great. Every time we get a bit of good news I can breathe a sigh of relief… until the next test!
This weekend was Homecoming at Bella’s school. We went to the JV Football game to cheer family friends who were playing. Can you believe it was my first football game ever? I never got into it when I was younger but now that I am married to a football fan and have three little guys, our house it all about football – from playing it in the driveway and watching it on TV to collecting football cards. Andrew and Matthew were bouncing with excitement to see there first live game. We all had a great time!
Well, except for John-Paul. He did have fun but he could only take so much sports until he needed some “me time” to zone out. The only way I could get him to sit through two hours of football was to let him play a couple video games between quarters. 😉
Later that evening, Bella attended her first high school dance with her friends. This photo doesn’t do her justice or the pretty dress she wore but she had a great time and I breathed a sigh of relief when she was back home and safe in her bed. (I don’t know what I’ll be like when she actually starts dating! I told her not to be surprised if she continuously finds me incognito in the background on her dates. 😉 )
~ 3 ~
In the Kitchen…
Monday: Chicken tortilla soup, quesadillas and broccoli
Tuesday: (Dentist appt day) Pizza and salad
Wednesday: Slow cooker BBQ chicken sandwiches, green beans and salad
I’m still loving This Is US and Speechless. We also started watching Lethal Weapon, which has become a favorite too. Poldark is a given as well.
We are watching Designated Survivor and want to start a drinking game every time Kiefer Sutherland squints and mumbles. 😉
I gave up on The Good Place and have yet to watch last night’s episode of The Walking Dead. It is sitting in my DVR while I debate whether or not I will submit myself to some emotional torture. Maybe I’ll watch this weekend… or wait until I need a really good cry. (In the meantime, no spoilers, please!)
Listening to …
Love this one by Coin and not just because Brian knows the best way to shut me up. 😉
I am making up for lost time in not posting in the past. I am on Day 24 out of the Write 31 Days Challenge. I think I just may make it to the finish line!! You can check out the 31 Days of Gratitude 2016 posts here.
PPS – * Disclaimer: “Revolution of Love.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.”
In other words, if you click on my affiliated links and make a purchase, I get a small compensation that goes towards keeping the blog online. Big hugs to those who click and help support the blog! xoxo 🙂
The #write31days challenge continues. It’s Day 13 of my 31 Days of Gratitude 2016. In a new tradition, I’ll be having Throwback Thursdays and reposting past posts. Here is one I originally posted in exactly a year ago. (Funnyy thing, I am scheduled to join Matthew at The Farm for a Kindergarten field trip next week. 🙂 )
* * * * *
Today was Matthew’s school field trip to the “The Farm,” an organic farm in Salinas, CA. It is an annual field trip the pre-school class takes every year and I’ve been lucky enough to join each of the kids on their trip. Even a decade ago, before Bella was in school, I went with a group of home schooling friends. (Can you tell we didn’t have cell phones then, so no selfies. I also didn’t realize how much heavier I was then!) I’m so grateful to have these one-on-one moments with my children doing something special with them.
Our trips to The Farm. 2015 with Matthew, 2014 with John-Paul, 2012 with Andrew and 2004 with Bella.
As I was riding on the bus with Matthew leaning on me and holding my hand tightly, I thought about that fact that this was most likely my last field trip here with a pre-schooler. Before Brian got cancer a couple years ago, we were thinking about having one more baby. On the one hand, I was feeling my age and family responsibilities but on the other hand I really wanted a sister for Bella! However, after Brian got sick we had to be prudent, especially while he was going through chemo. The more we prayed about it, the more we felt like it was something we wanted but not necessarily what God wanted for us. A part of me had a hard time letting go of having another baby girl (or boy) and accepting that my last baby was most likely my last baby.
Thankfully, now I can say that instead of being regretful, I am filled with gratitude for my four blessings (plus two in heaven), especially when I consider that in between Bella and Andrew, we thought we’d never be able to conceive and carry to term a second child. Today I no longer feel that tug for a baby. I am truly at peace with our family and realize that God knew what was best for us especially when you factor in Brian’s parents and the help they now need from us.
It is not always easy to let go of our idea of what our life should look like, whether we want more kids or are dealing with a surprise pregnancy. Thankfully God is ready to give us all the grace we need to let go of the negative and worry and instead focus on the blessings of what is before us. For that, I am truly grateful.
It all started eight years ago when Bella came home on the last day of first grade with a small blue fish named Blueberry. She had won the contest to see who would get to keep the class pet. I had a “no pets” rule in the house. It may seem harsh but I grew up remembering my mom’s saying that if it didn’t wear diapers, it couldn’t come into the house. (Although, by the time I got married she softened and my younger siblings had a number of dogs and cats.)
Well, I couldn’t have cats with my allergies and I knew ultimately a dog would be my responsibility, not to mention that our yard is not made for a dog, but I thought I could handle a fish. After all, how could I say no to a simple little fish with Bella dancing with excitement because of her new pet. So we became a fish family.
After Blueberry we had Francis, Rocky & Spike and then our latest, Andrew’s beloved Anakin Fishwalker. Nearing 2 1/2 years old, we knew Anakin had outlived his life expectancy and I prepared the kids telling them that he was becoming a grandpa fish now and would eventually pass away.
Two weeks ago, Andrew brought Anakin to the school for the Blessing of the Animals. We were especially excited that Anakin Fishwalker won the Best Named Pet Award. Andrew was all smiles.
This afternoon, however, when he came home from school and went to feed Anakin, he found that he had died. He knew it was coming but his little heart still felt the pain of it. With tears, he told his brothers and together we placed Anakin in a mini box and buried him in our little “pet cemetery.”
It’s always hard to say good bye to something you love but I am thankful for our little pets that bring the kids smiles. (Those fish may have even softened me up enough to consider a dog when the boys are a bit older.) I am also thankful for my son’s tender heart. He has an old soul and things touch him a little deeper. It may mean he gets hurt easier but it also means he is more willing to show kindness and care towards others.
It’s Day 18 of f the #write31days challenge and my 31 Days of Gratitude 2016 and I was supposed to post this in the morning but I had no time since I left early for a school field trip (more on that tomorrow) and after school we had appointments and errands and I got home with barely enough time to get dinner on the table. So it’s a late post today.
What I was thankful for, however, was the Blessed Is She workshop I attended at home (with bare feet and my cozy clothes). It was given by Shannon of We, A Great Parade and I was so excited to hear it because I met her at the BIS team retreat and she is absolutely lovely (and I fell in love with her baby boy who I was eager to hold 😉 ). Shannon spoke about “Finding Your Identity as Beloved” with the book of Hosea. The workshop was insightful and but there were also worksheets she could use to go deeper and I’m almost a little afraid to because I suspect there is more God wants to reveal to my heart. I’ll let you know how it goes. 😉
I may be biased since I am a part of BIS but I have nothing to do with the workshops (besides attending them) but I think they are genius. It allows me to set time aside to watch and learn and pray without having to leave my home. And if I miss a workshop, I can go back and replay it as many times as I want. I am just so grateful for this opportunity and so thankful for the women who share their heart and their knowledge with us.
I know for some people the price is an issue ($15 a workshop) but you can get at least 12 workshops (more since most months have more than one workshop) plus the Advent journal and the Lenten journal for a year subscription of $99. I think that would be a great thing to add to your Christmas gift if you have a generous relative that wants to buy you something or a hubby that will donate your gift money to your BIS fund. Just saying… 😉
So for the workshops, for the speakers, for a hubby that understands I am feeding the kids early and also chooses to wait to eat until I am done so we can have dinner together, I am truly thankful. 🙂
Oh, and by the way, the next workshop is scheduled for October 28! I hope to see you there. 🙂