Tuesday, September 30, 2008

God is our source!

The stock market continues to drop. Hundreds of people continue to lose their homes to foreclosure. The government bails out major financial companies. I can't even watch the news anymore. It gets me all in a panic about my own financial status. Suzie Orman even almost had me convinced that I need to sell my house immediately and rent an apartment. Okay, I think that might be a bit drastic at this point, but I, like most Americans, do have some concerns about my family's finances.

For example, it's almost winter which means propane bills will soon begin to sneak their way underneath my front door. We're not on a monthly plan, so we get a bill each time they fill our tank. A huge bill to be specific. And that was last year, before the extreme hike in oil prices.

So this morning, Jim calls to let me know that our co-pay on our health insurance has also gone up 33%. Awesome. While we're on the phone I declare that he needs to teach me eBay so I can sell anything and everything we have that is idly lying around the house in order to pay for propane this winter. He would love to teach me eBay, but we both are skeptical about whether or not our miscellaneous unemployed home goods will bring in enough money to make a dent in the bills. We say good-bye and both go on about our day.

A few hours later, Jim emails me. The subject line simply says "Wow...." I read on. Jim informs me that he has just been handed a bonus check at work. A very unexpected bonus check. He types that he is in tears and speechless. And as I read that, I am too.

Just a couple weeks ago, when Jim was talking to my dad, I overheard him say that he needed to remember that God is our source. Today, God gave us a clear as day reminder that in the midst of uncertainty, while oil prices rise and stocks fall, He is our source.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Hope does not disappoint

I've been struggling lately. I've been struggling with feeling disappointed in people. When you're close to someone, you think you know them. Then something happens and you realize you don't know them as well as you thought. Then you wonder if you were ever really close to them to begin with. And that's when your mind starts to mess with you. You over analyze everything they've said, you've said. You begin to lose confidence in them and in the process begin to lose confidence in yourself. But before you reach the point of despair, God whispers a reminder of His hope. He whispers through the smile of a stranger, the determination of a child, the encouragement of a friend, the embrace of a loved one. He turns your perspective upside down and while reminding you of his hope, He also points out that your feeling of disappointment in others is actually a reflection of your heart towards Him. And it hits you like a ton of bricks. If we put our hope in people, of course they're going to let us down, but when we put our hope in Him we are never disappointed.

"Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us." Romans 5:1-5

Friday, September 26, 2008

Puppy Love

Oh how I embrace
Snuggling with my puppy Chase

Soft and fuzzy
Warm and cuddly

These times nothing else could replace

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Take me out to the ball game

"Actually, just take me out ANYWHERE! I just need to get out!"
This was my plea to my husband recently when I realized that I've been in "mommy mode" 24 hours a day for the last 71 straight days. I love my girls. I love my girls immensely. But I also love my husband and, as selfish as it sounds, I love myself. And I love me even more when I'm in a somewhat sane state of mind. And lately, I've been a little more on the insane side, so I knew I was in desperate need of a "break". Jim must have seen it too because it didn't take him more than a couple of days to find a solution: Phillies baseball. Some of you may chuckle at this notion, especially those who know my husband's passion for all things related to baseball cards, not excluding the attendance of actual games. And this would appear to most to be a ridiculous suggestion for reviving an over-stressed mommy, but not for this mommy. Nope, going to a Phillies game would be perfect. It would give me the chance to divert my frustrations with life at an umpire and players who can't hear me anyway. (After all, I was a cheerleader for 8 years, so I'm sort of wired to find it exhilarating to yell and scream at games.)

We left home around 5:00 and made excellent time getting to the ballpark, which meant we could afford to stand in the 6 mile long line for food and still see the first inning. We got cheesesteaks and I even decided to splurge and go against my self-enforced rule of no soda for the month of September and get a Coke. We made it to our seats and settled in to enjoy some baseball. Jim had brought a sweatshirt, which I immediately swiped at the first cool breeze I felt. Half an hour later, Jim was getting cold, but couldn't get his sweatshirt back from me. Nope, I wasn't about to give it up. Not just because it was keeping me cozy, but because I was secretly pumping my milk off underneath it's discreet red cover. I had to keep looking down it to check the amount of milk and I'm sure the men sitting to my left thought I had some crazy obsession with my bra or something. But hey, sometimes, you just gotta do what you gotta do. And it was a small price to pay for a little sanity. We laughed and talked and even got ice cream in the 6th inning. The Phillies were down by a run after the end of the 8th, so we decided to head back to the car early and beat the traffic getting out of the city. It was amazing how fast we made it out of the parking lot. So fast in fact that we missed the turn for I-95 South and instead got on heading north. No big deal, we can take Hwy 76 home.... oops, missed that turn too. We end up driving around Philly for an extra half hour, give or take, before we finally found our way back to 95 South. We made it back home just minutes after 11:00 and I immediately settled back into "mommy mode", but this time feeling more relaxed then I had in weeks. Yes, I had 6 whole hours to just enjoy hanging out with my best friend without having to feed a little person, or change a diaper, or clean up a mess. It was perfect.

This post is dedicated to my brave sister-in-law, Katie and her husband, Declan, without whom this perfection would not have been possible. They graciously took care of our girls and stayed up past their bed time to do so, so to them "You're my heroes".

Monday, September 22, 2008

So Long Summer

Today is officially the first day of fall. I welcome the slightly cooler weather and the changing colors of the leaves, however, I'm sad to say "good-bye" to summer. Especially this summer. It was so full of firsts and filled with fun.

A Summer Summary

Discovered the grass and decided it wasn't scary after all

Played at the park

Scoped out all kinds of birds and bugs

Hung out with pop-pop and fire trucks and fans

Partied like a princess

Sported a swimsuit with style

Cheered for the Phillies

Fed some crazy goats

Jumped on the trampoline

Frolicked with friends

Morphed into a strawberry fairy

Went for walks

Fell in love with the beach

Had fun times with family

Met my best friend Kylie

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Wet Bedding and Bed Wetting

When I woke at 4:45 this morning to feed Kylie, I realized as I was changing her that her diaper had leaked and there was a nice wet spot soaked through 3 layers of bedding. No big deal. You expect that with new babies. I change her bedding, feed her, and go back to sleep for a couple more hours.

Now, its 8:15 and Kyra has been jabbering away in her crib for a while, so I finally make the trek down the hall to get her up. Not surprisingly, she isn't wearing the pajama pants I had put her in last night before bed. This has happened a few times before, however, as I approach her it comes to my attention that this time, she has removed her diaper as well. Ugh, I don't even want to know what she's been doing with her diaper as I'm sure it's soaked from last night. I grab the diaper and notice that it is shockingly dry.... this can't be good. As my mind tries to process how in the world her diaper could be so dry after a full 12 hours of sleep it occurs to me that she had to have taken it off BEFORE she fell asleep. Uh-oh... definitely not good. I lift her blanket... its wet. My hand swipes over her sheets... also wet. Her favorite teddy bears... wet. Her pajama shirt... wet. I'm less than thrilled, but slightly humored at the same time. Kyra acts as if nothing were out of sorts. She smiles, grabs both her bears and hugs them against her face, and then bounces toward me to get her out of her crib. All I can think about is how I'm going to get those bears away from her long enough to put them through the wash. I knew when I had kids that I'd have to face the bed wetting eventually, however, in my ignorance I assumed it wouldn't happen until we were in the "potty training phase". Life never ceases to surprise me.

As I'm writing this, I've successfully washed and dried both Kyra and Kylie's bedding; one teddy bear is currently taking a ride in the dryer; and, I'm sending up a prayer of thanks that Kyra's bowels decided to take the night off.

I have a blog....

I've been putting it off for months. I kept waiting for that defining moment to happen. You know, the one that you just absolutely know is blog-worthy. I've found myself thinking numerous times, "you know, if I had a blog, I'd totally write about this". But despite my countless encounters with cute little stories that could be shared via the world wide web, I still felt as though none of them were worthy of being my first entry. I mean, I couldn't just all of a sudden start a blog and have my only post discuss my dog's ruptured anal gland or how my daughter randomly picked up a cockroach and handed it to me. No, the first post sets the pace for all the posts that are to follow in it's footsteps or keystrokes or whatever it is that posts follow in. But today, though somewhat like days I've had in the past, today warranted the start of the blog.....

It's a Thursday. And it's been one heck of a day. You know, the kind of day where you start 47 tasks and finish none of them because each one is interrupted by something more pressing. Yeah, today is one of THOSE days. I'm trying to dry my hair and Chase (our dog) throws up, under my bed of all places. Perfect. I love crawling under my bed to clean up dog puke. But before I can sop up the carpet spray I've generously lathered on the floor, the oven beeps. I have to go put the ribs in the slow cooker so they'll be ready in time for dinner tonight. Ribs... almost done getting them in the crock pot.... alas a baby cries. Kylie (our 2 month old) needs to be changed and fed. Almost done... and Kyra (our 22 month old) is pulling every picture out of the photo box in the living room. Awesome. Kylie needs a bath. Put a movie on for Kyra in hopes of buying 9 minutes to bathe Kylie. Oh yeah... the dog puke... What was I doing again?! Bath, Kylie. Nearly done getting her dressed, but I suddenly have the strangest feeling Kyra isn't watching the movie.... "Kyra?" "Kyra?" "Kyra!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" She's drinking a bottle of Purell hand sanitizer! Sucking on the pump as if it were a straw! Not good. I call Jim. I can't think straight while I'm towelling Purell off Kyra and the carpet with a half-dressed Kylie fussing upstairs. Jim calls Poison Control for me. When he calls me back, I lose it. Like "check-me into the nut house" lose it. I'm crying hysterically and yelling and experiencing every emotion God gave to mothers all at once. I pull it together and throw the girls in the car. I need to see Jim, but mostly, I need him to see Kyra so he can reassure me in person (the 18 attempts on the phone weren't good enough) that she is going to be okay. We have lunch and Kyra seems fine. As I'm driving home, I know both girls will be ready for naps and I think to myself I can FINALLY finish all the little tasks I started this morning. And we have sleep.... yessssss! Then all of a sudden... the doorbell?! Are you KIDDING ME?! It's me time. It's regain my sanity hour. Who in the world would DARE ring my doorbell? But it's a delivery, for me. Dozens of the most beautiful purple orchids in a heavy duty glass vase. The card: "I love you babe! You are an amazing mother. You impress me more and more each day. Thank you for loving me. Jim" Naturally, I cry. I cry because I know he didn't order them today. He didn't see me in my chaotic state and quickly dial up the florist. No, he had sent the flowers long before September 18th, 2008 ever began. He sent them because he loves me. And he knew that whether I was having the best or the worst day of my life I would be surprised and appreciative of his loving gesture. It just so happens that today, I really needed it. Not the flowers (although they look absolutely divine on my kitchen table right now) but the reminder of how much he loves and supports me. And now, instead of using my time to finish all those little tasks I started this morning, I started a blog and wrote about it. But doing this was more important. It was one of the few things I could do to let Jim know how much his flowers, his card, his love meant to me today. Jim, ILYMTL too. Thank you.

Oh and look, I actually finished something I started today.