Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Grand Prix!

One of the things I love about being a mom is watching my husband be a dad.  I remind my children constantly that they are incredibly blessed to have such an involved and loving father. I enjoyed watching Cody and Jerry preparing for the Awana Grand Prix and making Cody's car a masterpiece.  This was their first time participating, so they learned that next year they'll need to add some more weight to the car so it will go faster.  I was impressed with the creativity of some of these kids (and their dads)! Our small group leader was up until the wee hours of the morning finishing their car...a replica of a Wii remote!  Pretty impressive....
Hope your week is off to a great start.  Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Father of the Man

We are blessed and privileged to know a very gifted writer, Dr. Peter Colman, and he has published a book that I am currently reading.  It has been many years in the making, and so far, it has touched many lives and hearts.  If you're looking for a great read, you've found it in "Father of the Man:  A Journey Toward Reconciliation." Here is the synopsis from the back of his book:

Father of the Man portrays a young boy, standing near the threshold of a remote window in time, his eyes trained on his father's heroic ascent toward an unforeseeable anonymity.  This creative autobiography reveals a reluctant, prodigal father and his estranged New England son, who, after decades of separation, returns to offer comfort, reconciliation and redemption in a father's final hour.  At the heroic moment of descent, both father and son find uncommon strength and enduring hope in the intimacy and joyous agony of restored love.  Father of the Man belongs to every son and daughter yearning to rediscover and reaffirm their own humanity.
Peter and his wife Judy are very dear friends of ours and we are so excited for everyone to read this book.  For more information or to order your own copy, please visit www.drpetercolman.com.  The book will also be available on Amazon.com in the near future.  

Thursday, January 22, 2009

More of Him. Less of Me.

This week has been very challenging for me personally, and God has been so faithful to comfort me in so many ways.  In the midst of adversity, it's so easy to allow ourselves to be beaten down by life and people, but God has been showing me some things this week that I just felt really led to share.  In that spirit, and for no other reason, I felt that perhaps somebody else needed to hear this from the Lord today too.

When I am put through the trials and fires of life, God desires that I might come out of them refined as gold (Job 23:10).  In all circumstances, God is looking for an opportunity to teach me more about Himself.  Yet, in my flesh I want to retaliate, to defend myself, to fight back when I feel I've been mistreated, misunderstood, or judged unfairly.  But God has been showing me, in very tangible ways, what Jesus meant when he commanded us to "turn the other cheek."  I have a choice. And this is the biggie:  My choice reflects what is going on in my heart and in my walk with Christ.  It impacts my testimony. Furthermore, my joy must not be dependent upon my circumstances.  Ever.  People will always disappoint, but my hope should always be in Christ and what He is doing in and through whatever adversity I might be facing. After all, He allowed it to be so.  Finally, I must remember God to be the Righteous Judge that He is (Psalm 7:8). All of us will face our Creator on judgment day, and I am going to have to give an answer for how I have lived this life. How I responded. What I said, and how I behaved.  In light of that, suddenly all these temporary trials seem so incredibly insignificant.  

His love is not a pampering love. It's a perfecting love.  

I think it's time for me to be quiet and just trust Him.  

How about you?

Oh Lord, that I might come forth as gold.  Let my testimony not be tarnished by the ugliness that lies deep within my heart.  Cleanse me, Lord.  Let these temporary trials cause me to say, "More of You, Lord, and less of me."  In Jesus' Name, amen.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Not So Long Ago

Cody had his second ever violin recital today.  He played a song called, "Long, Long Ago."  He did a great job and we're so proud of him and his progress over the last year.

It's amazing to think that just a year ago he was playing his first little song on that tiny little violin.  Now, a year letter, he's playing a bigger violin and has even grown a couple of inches.

So much has happened over the past year, and yet it hasn't been all that long ago.  

I will always remember these precious memories and how I held my breath with every stroke of his bow, and fingering of the strings.  

I will never forget how I shut off the camera before he took his big bow because I couldn't wait to cheer for him.  

I will always remember looking at the family who was sitting in front of me whose little one played the exact same song Cody played a year ago.  It was her first violin recital.

And I will remember how I fought back tears thinking of how fast this year has gone.  

And how much I am already looking forward to hearing him play again next year.

And how proud Poppop would be if he could hear him now.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Definitely Blogworthy

I never started this blog to become famous (or rich), but rather to document the lives of our family since I can't seem to get my act together enough to scrapbook.  Given what has happened to my poor sister with her recent blogsplosion (I just made that up), it's made me realize that if something happened to this blog, I have not backed up a single thing I've written here, with the exception of some posts that I've copied and sent over to a publishing friend of mine.  (He told me I should consider putting them in book form.  Maybe it's a good idea after all.)  

Anyway....my sister's predicament has inspired me to do a few things.  And soon.

I need to back up my blog, for one.  (Suggestions, anyone?  Anyone?)

Secondly, I should probably be more intentional about documenting milestones in the boys' baby books and not just do it here. After all, there is something to be said for a book that you can actually hold in your hands and turn pages.   

The reason I post tonight is to document yet another milestone in my kids' lives and in my life as a mother.  I think we've successfully potty trained Caden.  He is doing amazingly well in just three short days, and I'm so shocked at how easy this has been this time around (Cody had a tough time, but then again, I was a newbie at this whole thing and probably forced the issue more than I should have).  

I do have to say, however, that nobody is more proud of him or excited for him than his big brother.  He has done more cheerleading, clapping, hugging and encouraging than any of us. 

And because of that, I am documenting this milestone for both of them. 

Caden, I am so proud of you.  You're getting to be such a big boy.  
Way to go, buddy!

Cody, you're the best big brother to Caden.  
He's so blessed to be following in your footsteps.
Thanks for all your help this week.  

I love you both!!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mommy and Her Boys

While we were waiting for the "so-called blizzard" to arrive last night, we enjoyed a night off from our cancelled activities and some quiet time spent together...just the four of us.  You'll only see three here because daddy was busy snapping pictures.  If you're wondering about the pencils, this was Cody's doing.  I think he was trying to make me look like Bam Bam or something!  Do you think it worked?
Eskimo kisses are the best, especially in a deep freeze....

Oh, how I love my boys!
Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from Him. 
Psalm 127:3

Friday, January 09, 2009

A Day in the Life

Today was a day that felt very odd and random.  I thought I'd recap all of its happenings just for fun.  Enjoy a Day in My Life!
  • I woke up to snow.  Lots of it.  But thankfully didn't need to go anywhere.  
  • Then I remembered we had a chiropractor appointment that I promptly cancelled.  I was not going ANYWHERE in this weather.
  • After Bible time with Cody (we take Fridays off of academic school subjects unless make-up work is needed), I decided it was high time to get working on "The Sound of Music" since I had rehearsal tonight and again tomorrow morning.
  • I sang through "The Lonely Goatherd" like, ten times.  So did my children.  *grin*
  • I discovered that yodeling is not my strong suit.
  • They begged me to play "Do Re Mi" and I decided this song is a brilliant way to teach kids about music theory.
  • We listened to Go Fish.  And danced around the house.  We now have a new and fun way to learn the 66 books of the Bible for Awana because of "The Bible Book Bop."
  • I did dishes.
  • I cleaned up the house.
  • The neighborhood kids came over and, just like that, it was a mess again.  Sigh.
  • I decided it needed to be pizza night so I called and ordered it from our local grocery store.  You gotta love a large pizza that only costs $5.99.  NO cooking for mommy when she has to be at rehearsal by 5:30.
  • I started planning music for our Easter services at church.  No rest for the weary, I suppose.
  • Somewhere in here I showered.
  • And was reminded AGAIN of the fact that I lost all my privacy when I became a mother. 
  • And reminded them again that they MUST KNOCK first.
  • And then listened to the toddler whine that mommy was not coming out of "da baff-woom!" 
  • Jerry got home and we exchanged a quick kiss and off I went to rehearsal.
  • But first I had to dig out.
  • I didn't get to have any pizza.
  • I was totally impressed, again, with the kids in this show.  They are so much fun.
  • Coming home, I almost rear-ended somebody because, apparently, nobody plows anymore.
  • Oh, and I'm totally ready to yodel tomorrow.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Happy Birthday, Darci!

Today is my sister Darci's birthday.  She deserves a BIG shout out today, on this the 8th day of January.  She's feeling a little emotional about approaching the big 3-0 next year, but you all can attest...it only gets better, right???  

I will never forget the day that Darci came home from the hospital.  I was sick.  And I couldn't hold her, which was horrible for me, a little kindergartener.  But she was sooooo cute!  She and I were instantly the best of friends and I have so many happy memories of our years together (ask her to tell you about the curling iron episode sometime).  Aaaaaahhhhhh, memories!

Darci, you are a gift to the world, and I am so very grateful for the day you came into it.  


Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Update on Resolutions

So we started "The Chronicles of Narnia" over break.  We began with "The Magician's Nephew" and everything was going along just fine (READ MORE, mommy!!!) until we met the witch.

Now Cody is scared to close his eyes at night.  I'm thinking he may be too young for these books (in fact most book lists recommend that children be between 9 and 12).  But we love to do read-alouds with our family.

Last night, at my group's home school meeting, there were four home school graduates who shared with us (it was so encouraging to meet these amazing young men and women), and the overriding thing they all said about their experience was that they remember reading great books.  They said this is one of the things that has helped them in life...learning to speak well, write well, and learn well.  They also said that some of their fondest memories were sitting together as a family reading great books aloud.  ALL of them said this.  I already knew the importance of reading good books, but to hear them say that it bonded their family in such a special way was really cool to hear.

So far this year we've read "Charlotte's Web," "Henry Huggins," and "Homer Price."  

Do any of you out there in the blogosphere have any favorite books that you think would be good for a seven year-old boy?  I am open to any and all suggestions.  I have a couple of books/book lists with good literature suggestions, but most of them are recommended for older kids (9 and older).  I'd love your input!

Thanks, everyone!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

I Can TRY to Keep Them

I've read several blogs this week with posts dedicated to New Year's resolutions.  I read my sister's blog and she had me laughing at her resolutions so I thought I'd attempt my own version.  Here, in no particular order, are my Top Ten Resolutions for 2009.

1.  I will try to abide by the rules of the road, thus avoiding expensive fees and traffic school.  

2.  I will attempt to order something off the menu that I do not personally tweak to fit my (pickiness) tastes.

3.  I will be more easy going when my children want to play with floam, flarp, Mars Mud, Moon Sand, or any other gritty, slimy substance.  I will attempt to remember that they are boys and this is just something they MUST do to satisfy their inner boy.

4.  I will say thank you more often to my husband, who is currently doing all the laundry in the house and not complaining about it.  WHAT A GUY!!!

5.  I will read the Chronicles of Narnia to Cody this year.  And finish.

6.  I will try to guard my schedule more by exercising my "NO" muscle.  This is gonna be hard...

7.  In light of my Type-A personality, I will remember that Cody responds better to hands-on field trips more than filling up all the pages in his workbooks.  I will try to be more flexible and adjust accordingly when I see our lesson plans for the day aren't necessarily God's plans.  

8.  Like my sister, I will try not to cocoon myself in our comforter, thus leaving my hubby cold at night.  It must run in the family....

9.  I will watch an entire episode of Ultimate Fighter with my husband just because I know it would make him happy.

10.  I will bribe the dog with more treats and walks so that he learns to love me more.  

How about you?  What's your #1 resolution for 2009?

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Santa, Football, and Fun

I know, I know.  I am totally absent from this blog.  I just can't seem to find a good amount of time to update.  But here's a quick one.  Christmas was a whirlwind!  The boys got to see Santa this year which was definitely a highlight for them.  He came to Nanna and Papa's house and we thoroughly enjoyed watching each grandchild sit on his knee (except for Caden).  He watched Santa from the ottoman but when bribed with a sucker, we managed to coax him onto his knee for a picture. Ah, you gotta love sugar!  (A big thank you to Nanna and Papa for a great time and for making us feel so welcome.)

Rehearsals are about to begin for the show I'm music directing, so I needed to get back to do some work on the score.  But today was a fun day as we rang in the new year with our neighbors and watched our Huskers win the Gator Bowl.  A win!  At a bowl game!!!  Hallelujah.

Right now, the boys are all sleeping even though it's 4:30 in the afternoon.  Our schedules are a mess lately, but I figure they all need the rest.  Everyone's much happier when rested, right?

I'm about to start cleaning up from our football extravaganza.  

And the win....did I mention it feels GREAT?  GO HUSKERS!

Happy New Year, everyone!  I wish you all a blessed 2009.