Sunday, August 25, 2013

A little hearing, a little thinking, a lot of Thanks

Today during Mass I actually heard/paid attention to the homily. This in and of itself is a bit of a minor (very minor in the grand scheme of life) miracle. With 3 young boys just making it to Mass without someone (usually mom or dad) crying is amazing. To actually make it through Mass AND remember what was said/read/sung….MIRACLE. Seriously.

SO today’s homily I actually heard. And liked. Short form: “God’s way is narrow. The world’s way is wide.” Even while Father was giving his homily I was singing the song that coincides with this phrase. Love that song! Okay back on topic. So all day today I have been thinking about the Wide world and Narrow path to God. Also been thinking about turning 40 in 2 months and the fact that Jon and I are celebrating 10 Married years this Friday (30th)! Which all made me decide to dig out my old journal and (still new-ish) wedding album.

From my journal, written when I was 20: Where/who will you be in 20 years? “Married with 5 children, a couple dogs, and a nice spread in the country. Living near a metro area where I will be earning a living as a concert violinist or a vocal soloist. Hope to be near my 3 brothers and their families. (shorten version)

From our Wedding album: Where will you and your spouse be in 10 years? “Together. Hopefully with 5 children, our 2 dogs and a nice little place in the country. I hope to be able to stay home with the children while Jon works for KDOT.

1. I did not become a concert violinist or vocalist, although I still enjoy singing and playing the violin and viola.
2. We do not have 5 children. We have 3 beautiful and perfect for us boys. And I am thankful every day for them. We are not planning for more, but you just never know what God’s plan may be!

3. We thankfully do not live near a metro area but neither do we live the country. We live in a nice little rural town in the middle of Kansas. I love our little rural town. While it does have it’s “quirks” it fits us perfectly.

4. We do live relatively near 2 of my brothers…..they and their families are within 2 hours driving distance of us. My brother Tom passed away 10 years ago this October. Miss him, everyday. God’s will is that he be our guardian Angel….and I know we have kept him very busy! Thanks Tom Smile

5. Jon and I are very much together. And that makes me very happy and extremely proud. We are so strong together. We have endured our tests and together we are stronger for them. We will continue to endure… because we are just too damn stubborn to do anything else! (And we are still very much head over heals in love with each other!!)

6. I am able to stay home with the boys although Jon is not with KDOT any more, he is very happy working for Kirkham Michael.

So while the above is just a shortened overview of the past 10 years of our married life, it gives a very good view that it is not my way, but God’s way that prevails. I wanted a very wide variety of things in our life, while God has very specifically said that there are things we don’t need. And what we want is not necessarily what is best for us. It is a very hard lesson to learn. I hope that I am able to finally learn it in the next 10 years. If not, I will be thankful that our God is a very forgiving and Loving God. And I will just keep trying. It is not easy. But I will keep trying.

I wonder where we will be in 10 years????


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Ahhh. The first day of School….

Mom’s up early and in the kitchen cooking a breakfast for her family, all showered and looking like a million bucks. Dad is in the bedroom helping the boys get dressed…all the while there is laughing, joking and happy words being exchanged. Everyone sits down to the table together to enjoy breakfast and family time. The boys are ready for school early, so we have time to read Pocket Full of Kisses, take lots of pictures, and casually make our way to school in a very non-rushed, have all the time in the world, this is gonna be a smokin’ awesome day kinda way.


Yep, I was in the kitchen frantically making muffins for breakfast, except for JT who wanted (and got) a leftover hotdog. I was showered, with hair still dripping wet, and as I would soon realize only 1 shaved leg.  Anthony was up, dressed, helped a bit with the muffins, then dumped the trash…literally...all over the kitchen floor. Got that cleaned up, went to make sure Brady was moving towards the “completely dressed” stage….nope still sleeping. By this point the smiley happy words were becoming a bit “less smiley”. Let Jon take over there as Brady and I are oil and water first thing in the morning…we need our morning “coffees” first. JT is now “bored”…SERIOUSLY??? FINE. Let’s just go outside and take the pictures. Nooo, don’t worry about smiling, really don’t worry about it. I like pictures of grumpy kids. Who doesn’t? AUGH. Deep Breath. Again. Keep repeating. Well this is just not working. Hugs. Yep that is just what we all needed.

Fast forward a bit to the school gym… Anthony promptly found his line and took seat, I snapped a quick picture…I will be right back. Took Brady to his line, snapped a couple more pictures….I will be right back. Took JT to his line…snapped a pic, took a deep breath, snapped another…oh crud. Turned away, wiped the tears (never let them see you cry on the first day of Kindergarten…they might follow suit)…I will be right back. See Brady messing with his hearing aides…CRAP! forgot to change the batteries. Good thing he has extra in his book bag. Mr. Schroedar (principle) starts talking, sing National Anthem, more words, Pledge of Allegiance, classes dismissed. NO! WAIT! Were did Anthony’s class go? Out the other side of the gym…down a different hallway…I missed him leaving. And as I was frantically looking for Anthony, I almost missed Brady leaving with his class. But I saw JT, as he turned with the biggest smile on his precious little face, waving and saying “bye mom. bye dad”. Ahhhh. sniffle, sniffle. sigh.

We were all nervous about today. Anthony is starting 3rd Grade, which is in a different wing…the one we have always referred to as the “big kids” wing. Suddenly he’s not sure he wants to be a “big kid”. Brady is starting 1st Grade and his teacher is brand new to our district. Exciting but also an unknown for him which has thrown him off a bit. JT starts kindergarten. He is excited, nervous, scared, happy….and I even heard him whisper to Jon “I think I might gonna miss mommy” AHHHH! Jon, well he is our ROCK. He gets a bit choked up every year when this day rolls around but he is our rock. Me, well let’s just say that an empty house has never been so silently loud. I have the ipod cranked and all I can hear is the kid silence. And the screen is getting a bit blurry as the tears are still freely flowing.

I know the boys are all in great hands, our teachers are amazing. I know that they all have to leave the nest, spread their wings and fly. I also know that right at this very moment, if the person who first uttered those words was standing in front of me….well they would no longer be standing. Right at this very moment I want to go back to the school bring the boys home and listen to them play, fight, laugh and live. I want them here to console me because for the past 8 1/2 years I have been a stay at home mom of 3 boys with at least one of those boys home with me 95% of the time. I want the boys home because I know who I am when they are here. I am mom, maid, referee, team coach, teacher, healer, crazy game inventor, fixer of “almost” everything.

So who am I now?

We always encourage the boys at the start of every school year to “enjoy this. You will love this class and at the end of the year you will be smarter, older, happier, and ready to tackle the next challenge. I suppose it is time that I take our advice.

Deep Breath. Here I go…. watch out Ellsworth! (I would say watch out world…but, baby steps. Just baby steps for now!)


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A Snow Day and A Stay At Home Mom….

So I over heard a conversation….and I should have kept walking instead of listening but what I heard was this, “yeah, well us stay at home moms don’t get snow days. It’s just another day….” at this point I have to admit that I was in complete agreement. But as today continued to pass, I kept thinking. I could treat today and tomorrow as just another day for me and snow days for the boys, or I could take a snow day too.

So I will. I will take the day(s) “off”. Instead of worrying about the laundry being caught up, I will play in the snow. Instead of mopping the floors, I will paint messily with the boys. Instead of worrying about completing the next several pages of layouts, I will take tons of pictures and record the story of now. I will take “just another day” and make it another day with my ever growing, ever changing family. I will take “just another day” and enjoy them being young. I will take “just another day” and read books to them, ask them questions about what they want to be when they grow up. I will take “just another day” and really listen to what my boys are saying not just with their words but with the way that they are treating each other. I will take “just another day” to instill in them the life lessons that we want them to know and take with them through their lives. I will take “just another day”. 

I am sure there will be points in the next few days that I will doubt the words that I have written here. In fact I am 100% sure I will, as I am breaking up the 100th “scuffle” of the day. But I will also be making a more concentrated effort to enjoy “just another day” and to find every possible teaching moment and use it, to it’s fullest potential. Our children are only young once, and while there are times (oh how many times there have been) that I have wished they would just “grow out of this stage already”, I am also (finally) able to recognize that they and I have to go through these many stages of life to learn all the lessons to become the best possible person and parent. I will always have just another day to do the laundry, mop the floors, dust… but how many more snow days will we have to take “just another day”?

Enjoy all of life’s precious moments Red heart


Sunday, February 3, 2013

tags, LO’s and resolutions…..

Well hello there! I have been busy getting into the swing of this new year. Yes, I realize it is now February…I never said that I am a quick swinger Rolling on the floor laughing 

Believe it or not, I am not one to actually make New Year’s Resolutions BECAUSE I never even try to keep them. It’s like when you are thinking about trying something new and fun and then someone tells you that you have to do it, not because it is fun but because it will make you a better________ … Yeah I ‘m no longer interested in doing it. Period. So this year I decided to just be better at some things…not actually make a resolution, just do better! Such as actually sending everyone in my family (aunts, uncles, first cousins & their families) cards for their birthdays. I have always “meant” to do this and usually even get the card mostly made. Yes, you read that right. Mostly made. And by the time I make myself finish the card there is no way that it will actually reach the birthday person on time so the card gets put into a crate. Yeah, nothing comes next. It just gets put into the “cards that I cared enough to make but not send” crate. Blah. So I am trying to do better on this one. And I am proud to say that II have accomplished this goal for 2 months straight! Again, I realize that this is the very beginning of February but all 6 of the family birthday’s fall within the first 14 days of the month, so yes, those cards have been made are a currently residing in the Post Office mailbox waiting for the postmaster to retrieve them first thing tomorrow morning! High five

I have also been staying on top of my memory preserving…. or as my boys call it “momma in her scrapbooking cave again” and we won’t mention what my Dear Hubby calls it Open-mouthed smile I even have one to share with you today. It is based on the 5th February Challenge at Scraptastic Club. The super talented Heather came up with the fabulous sketch. As soon as I say it, I knew exactly what picture I was going to use! I was so inspired by the sketch that it only took me 1 hour to complete the LO!!! IMG_7972

I use the Days of Our Lives kit from Scraptastic. It came together so easy!

Now if only my printer would work so I could print the picture! It is a picture of Brady at swimming lessons and it is actually a really horrible quality picture from my phone…because the day that I had brought the good camera Brady would not even get in the water. SO I left the camera at home thinking that I was not going to need it. Boy was I wrong! Brady was a fish that day! He was so excited about jumping into the water by himself and then going “whole head” under water. He jumped out of the pool, ran to me and said “You come take a picture. Now. Mom.” (I was so proud… he sounded just like me!!) So we captured the moment in a not so good picture with an awesome story to go with it!! And that, my dear friends, is what scrapbooking is truly about.

I have also been playing with products out of my comfort zone, and since this has turned into a rather long post (which my not happen if I would actually post on a regular basis!) I will just so you the pictures and let you know that I am having a fabulous time learning how to take plain, ordinary, boring manila tags and make them into bookmarks, birthday cards, thank you notes….. the list is unending! I used dylusions ink spray by Ranger to make these and then once dry, I stamped and embossed them with various stamps that I have. IMG_7961



Enjoy the moments!