Friday, October 24, 2014

oh, and by the way....

these two are 17 today...


how the heck did that happen?
I only blinked for a second.

happy birthday babies....

zach and sarah

no slowing down.....

my life has been on full spin cycle for months.
no wonder i've been so stressed out.

first, rich got hurt and needed another back surgery...then, whitney moved in
and she came with her own set of issues
which we worked through and she is in a much, much better place now.
and then i started a new job (while still in school).

yep, this momma right here...is a working girl again.
it's just part time as a substitute teaching assistant, but
it has been so much fun...i really love it.

not only do i get to hang out with my favorite kind of people

kids

but i get paid to play all day ha!
who wouldn't love that kind of job?!

seriously, though it's a perfect job for me.
i get paid experience - which will come in handy when i finish my degree
i get my foot in the door with a great community company
i get to network and meet tons of interesting people
i get tons of ideas from crafty, loving, trained professionals in my chosen field
i get lots of little people hugs and so much more.
there are so many benefits to this job, it's crazy how it fits perfectly into my life.

nothing makes my day brighter than walking into a room and having 20 or so little faces smiling and screaming....yay -  ms charlene is here!!!

i seriously do love it.

i often have to pinch myself to remember that its not just a dream
this is my reality now.

it's funny how when you find the right fit for your life how everything just seems to 'feel' better.
i don't think i've ever been happier with my career choice.
i love being a mom and i love 'staying' home and being here for my kids whenever they need me
i love being a wife and caring for my husband.
but i also love this opportunity...and i know that this is my 'calling' in life.

i have always loved children
(gee, who would have guessed being a mom of 6, right?)
i'm so glad God was able to finally get his message across
and that i finally listened.

life is so full of adventure and fun
and i'm glad that i can enjoy it.

my whole point in sharing this is
i'm busy,
but i still love creating and sharing
and while my blog has been hit or miss lately
(okay --- really miss lately!)
i'm still around and i will share when i get time
and i truly appreciate all of you who are hanging out with me

Saturday, October 18, 2014

weight loss redux

here's my little confession....
not that it's any big deal, because i am human, after all,
but i am back on my diet (yep, nutrisystem) - only this time i'm not endorsing it.
i'm just doing it on my own.

i went back and forth on whether i wanted to share this publicly.
not that it's any big deal or secret, but i did gain a little bit of the weight back
after i went off the diet...not much, just 10 pounds {gasp!}
like i said that's not much in the grand scheme of things.

problem wasn't with the diet or really anything that i did wrong.
it's just that i was under a great deal of stress and my body decided
it didn't want to play along.
i'm human, like i said
i think it happens to the best of us

i wasn't going to say anything publicly about it, because i was embarrassed
that i gained some of the weight back,
but like i said its not like the diet failed me,
or anything i did wrong, my body just had enough of the stress.

the more i thought about not sharing, the more i knew that i had too.
not just for me (needing some accountability)
but for those that struggle with their weight.
it's a lifelong battle for some of us, unfortunately.

some of us are blessed with good genes and some of us...
eh, not so much.

while undergoing all the pressure i was going through
with school, my husband re-injuring himself, my kids, my life,
and about a dozen other things, i ended up having a lot of anxiety and chest pain.
even ended up in the er one night...i thought i was having a heart attack

turns out, it was what they call costochondritis, which is just a fancy name
for we can't find anything wrong with you, so we will make up a new name for
this unsolved mystery.  i underwent a battery of tests...
ekg, stress test, ct scan, blood work, chest xrays, etc.
they couldn't find a damn thing wrong with my heart.

not that, that's a bad thing, right?

all that anxiety and stress just added to my misery and pain, and weight gain.
you know those commercials about stress and belly weight...um, yep, it's true.
most of the weight that i gained was all in the belly area.

but not to fear, i am back on my diet...and i'm back to walking...i'm on anti anxiety meds
and life is slowly getting back to normal - whatever that may be.

like i said, i am writing this post to hold myself accountable (publicly)
and to tell folks that crap happens....and you can either just let it keep happening
or you can get up and fight.
i'm choosing to fight.  i will conquer this weight and when i'm through
i'm going to walk away like a boss!

feel free to join me - follow me - share your stories with me, etc.
we can do this - together.
i got your back!

in the meantime,
lace up those walking shoes,
drink some water
and
remember, life is a journey
and there are lots of bumps along the way.
so, hang on tight and enjoy the ride.


Saturday, September 27, 2014

Fruits of the Spirit


Lately, I have been feeling overwhelmed and stressed out...mostly about life in general,
I think sometimes we all need a little reminder that we don't have to do it all
and that we certainly, don't have to do it all on our own.

As moms, we are always trying to do too much and most of it is just not necessary.

we strive to be our best with such super high expectations of ourselves that when we 
fail (and let's face it, we all fail, no one is perfect)....we feel defeated.
we feel like we've let someone down, be it our children, our spouses, ourselves.

Recently, when I was feeling stressed and beating myself up about 
not accomplishing all my goals for the week and for overeating due to the stress, which followed by self loathing,...which led to me yelling at everyone for my lack of control and patience....which then led to a little scolding from my hubby for being so unkind to not only our kids, but to him as well.

I said a little prayer asking for grace and grabbed my Bible.

I placed it on the table and let the pages fall where they may, 
hoping for some Godly sign to bring me peace of mind.

this is the verse that popped up....

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
 - Galatians 5:22-23

Wow, God really has a way of hitting home, doesn't He?

I realized that while I was yelling at my husband because I felt so out of control, that God was working through him to show me just what I needed to see....

Instead of blowing up at me for yelling at him, my husband spoke to me with a kindness and understanding patience.  He didn't lose self control and blow up at me for blowing up at him.
He showed me compassion and love and gentleness and patience and goodness and kindness.

As I was reading the verse in the Bible and praying, I thanked God for showing me mercy through my husband.

I knew I needed to take a break from the stress, the homework, the need to "do it all" and just relax.

I went to the art closet and gathered some supplies and just let the creativity flow.


painting is so relaxing...


I wasn't exactly sure what I was going to paint, but God did....

I painted a tree and then took an apple and stamped it on the tree.


Next, I printed out all the words of the fruits of the spirit and glued them to the apples.

I hung my painting on the fridge, as a virtual reminder for when I'm feeling overwhelmed or stressed
and lacking self control.

God speaks to us all the time, we just need to open our hearts and listen.





Monday, September 22, 2014

need to please disease

Do you suffer from the "need to please" disease?

Lord knows, I sure do.

I say yes to almost everything and I almost always end up feeling overwhelmed
and stressed and emotionally drained trying to "do it all."

And on those {very} rare occasions that I do stick to my guns and say no, 
I feel sick to my stomach and incredibly guilty.  The guilt almost consumes me.  
It eats away at my soul and my spirit fills with dread.

The other day, I took Nicholas shoe shopping at the mall.
After we purchased his new shoes, 
we walked past the bookstore and the lure of the bargain bin had me hooked.
The next thing I know a half hour had passed.
Not that I had enjoyed the time as Nick was looming over me the whole time.
He insisted on standing next to me like an overbearing shadow all the while asking me if he could borrow three dollars for a deck of cards from the card shop.

I kept telling him no, not today.
he kept asking....begging
and saying he would pay me back as soon as we got home.

It wasn't the money I was worried about
I simply just had no desire to stop there.
I really just didn't "feel" like it.

I didn't even want to go shoe shopping, but the boy needed them so we had to go.

As we were passing the card shop on the way out
Nick proceeded to beg and plead some more.

I refused and as we walked to the car, that overwhelming cloud of doom grew bigger and bigger.
I could feel my heart racing, my anxiety level rising and my "mom guilt" kick in.
I didn't give in to him....
but, I sure wanted to.

The rest of the day, I felt horrible.

his endless pleas of 

it's only $3 mom
and
it will only take me five minutes to run in and back out.

kept playing in my head like a broken record.

I was consumed with dread, sick to my stomach with an empty void where my heart should have been, for not pleasing my child's desire to just "grab one deck of cards."

Even though that day I said no,
I often find myself saying yes.
yes, to so many things
things I have no desire to do
and no time to fulfill
often those things go undone
(which leads to even bigger issues).
but I can't help myself, 
it's almost ingrained in my mind to say yes.
I somehow feel obligated to say it.

Why do we let ourselves feel so consumed by this need to please and let it overwhelm our souls to the point of physically and emotionally destroying our well beings. 
It's such a sickening disease - this need to please.



That's why when I saw Lysa Terkeurst's new book "The Best Yes" I just knew I had to read it.


Do you suffer from the "need to please" disease?
You can join Lysa and her team in an online Bible study group.
it's free, you only need the book, a Bible, a highlighter or pencil, tablet and a desire to seek a "cure."


find out more here....


Proverbs 31 Ministries Online Bible Studies



*Disclosure: I am not being paid for this post....I'm just sharing, because I felt led to do so.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

tie dye fun...

one of our activities this summer was tie dyeing t'shirts.



the kids have been asking to tie dye for....forever, so i bought a kit and we went to work.
actually, sarah did all the work, we just decided what pattern we wanted and wrapped the rubber bands around the shirts and sarah did the rest.











there are a ton of ways to make your own diy tie dye, 
but we chose to go the easy route and use the kit.
probably less mess too ;)
not that i'm afraid of a mess when it comes to art,
however dye is another story....

we are currently drying ourselves after showers with tie dye towels, btw - ha!



later on during the summer,
actually it was the first day of school, i think
we made a tie dye rainbow cake.



*it was my intention to post this during the summer for club mom activities, but i was super busy all summer and barely had time to keep up with my life, let alone this blog.

but i will post it on the club mom page now, in case anyone is looking for fun ideas.


Wednesday, August 06, 2014

a little diy project....

we (as in the hubs and pepaw) built the kids' play fort way back when amanda and anthony were toddlers.

since then it's moved from one house to another

been the scene of many accidents (including zach's broken arm)

many little army men have been sacrificed in the sandbox

it's been painted, torn down by the dog (long story) and reconstructed many times over

it's been a spy fort for the little boys

an overnight campsite for the twins

the swings have been replaced numerous times

and much more

a baby swing once hung from it and was used by every child in our family

it's been a staple in our backyard for many years

and just a simple source of entertainment (and abuse lol) for our kids.

through the years we've had various covers on the fort part of it
many of them were ripped to shreds by storms (or the kids)

this summer,
in the hopes of giving it - yet again - a little face lift, i decided to make a new canvas cover for it.

i was given some canvas fabric from a friend and i really didn't know what to do with it
there was a good bit of fabric, but it was leftover from previous projects.
even though what i was given was a lot, it was all cut up in various sizes.
in an effort to clean up some of my fabric stash (you know, so i could make room for more ;o)
i took all that canvas and cut it into squares, then i headed to the fabric store and bought some coordinating fabric and cut that into squares as well. 

as i started piecing it together i realized i was going to need a lot more fabric, but i didn't want to spend any more money - so i headed to my closet and grabbed some old jeans that were way too big for me now that i lost weight and
 i ripped those up and cut them into squares as well.


next, i just started sewing....and sewing


.....and sewing


whenever i got tired of sewing, i painted the fort

i thought it would fun to paint a chalkboard on the wall.
so, i bought some chalkboard spray paint...


then, i painted the whole thing with a fresh coat of white paint - ok, so i confess, i still need to touch up here and there, but i have more plans in store, so i will - pinky swear - finish painting it at some point.

i painted the floor of the fort and the steps grey


when i finished sewing the cover
i took some more jeans and trimmed around the edges and then cut them for a cute fringe trim.


next, i took the top part of the jeans and made them into pouches for the kids to put chalk and other treasures inside....



the end result....
(at least so far - i still want to spruce it up by painting the sandbox portion, adding new swings - yet again - and a few other odds and ends 


ready for many more years of entertainment, adventures and fun.





heck, even i like hanging out in there....too bad the kids always manage to find me.


total cost (so far)
$10 in fabric
$5 for the chalk board paint
$4 for the blue trim paint

the white and grey paint were leftovers from other projects

looks pretty good for cheap less than $20 make over

don't you think so?