Friday, December 31, 2010

Reflections on 2010

2010 always sounded like we'd be living in a space age era with hovercars.  Not so much.  2010 was an interesting year for our family that provided good things.

I found these questions over at (In)Courage that offers a great format for reflecting on the year.

20 Questions for a New Year’s Eve Reflection

1. What was the single best thing that happened this past year?
**Dave getting a job.  We started off the year unemployed and ended it in job that could have only been orchestrated by the Lord.  It has been new, challenging, and sometime uncomfortable to work through the learning curve, but we believe the Lord didn't design us for comfort and teaches us great things through struggles.
2. What was the single most challenging thing that happened?
**Managing 3 kids in a new schedule (Dave's hours were drastically different from before).  It has been a challenge to raise 3 littles and keep my wits about me at the same time. Being diagnosed with Graves' disease.  It was a challenge to work through before I knew I had it.
3. What was an unexpected joy this past year?
**the job - getting a pretty clear picture of the main even of the year
4. What was an unexpected obstacle?
**Working out the details and expenses of Dave's dad care and move to LA and then him unexpectedly dying the week he arrives.  It was a shock.  We had so many ideas about the good things that would come from this move and to have it end abruptly was not something anyone was prepared for.  We grieve mostly for his sister who was more than excited about this move.
5. Pick three words to describe 2010.
**Challenging, Growing, Deepening 
(I took out two questions here)
8. What were the best books you read this year?
**The Help!  Hands down the BEST book.
9. With whom were your most valuable relationships?
 **Okay, this one is tough.  I feel overly blessed and humbled by my friends.  Each and every one of them adds value to my life.  I mean, my list would be off the page and I'd have to describe what I love about every single one.  Let's just leave it with - I love all my friends deeply and value them all uniquely. (hope that doesn't sound passive)
10. What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year?
**Gluttony!  I learned more about my eating this year than anything else.  I learned what happens when I'm gluttonous and how it affects my relationship with my children and husband.  I draw on it almost everyday and I continue to learn from it.
11. In what way(s) did you grow emotionally?
**I figured out ways to handle my frustrating with my children better.  I learned that teaching them a lesson in the moment of frustration or anger does nothing.  I learned that love teaches much more and that to teach a child, dominating anger will not work, it crushes and my goal as a mama is not to crush the spirit, it's to encourage it.  I want my children to know they are loved at all times, they just might not get away with what they think they should.  And that can be communicated with a smile on my face.
12. In what way(s) did you grow spiritually?
**It was all tied into gluttony.  I need help to conquer these types of struggles and that I do alot of asking and now it needs to move onto seeking the Lord in scripture (goal for 2011)
13. In what way(s) did you grow physically?
**the just makes me want to write a snide remark :)  I don't know.
14. In what way(s) did you grow in your relationships with others?
**I learned to think and wait before speaking.  That often times emotions are added to the mix and they will make a situation work.  I learned to not ask so many questions and instead ask only those that are important and not just to tickle my curiosity.
15. What was the most enjoyable part of your work (both professionally and at home)?
**I'm now working for Angela at Frugal Living NW.  I love being able to work from home and there are a ton of creative outlets.
16. What was the most challenging part of your work (both professionally and at home)?
**Eloise, Lily, and Sam.  
17. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year?
**the computer, isn't that every moms?
18. What was the best way you used your time this past year?
**just sitting with my kids and playing (I'm not very good at that)
19. What was biggest thing you learned this past year?
**I think we already covered this...gluttony and trust
20. Create a phrase or statement that describes 2010 for you.
**Full on the right things.  Cheesy, but true.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas activities

One of the best things we did this Christmas was re-enact the birth of baby Jesus.  I saw the idea over at Impress Your Kids and we had a little time to spare before we went out one evening, so we went with it.

Eloise was Mary, post birth, in the stable.  Lily was pregnant Mary, on the journey to Bethlehem.  Sam was a stragler.  Here's how their story went. 

Both Mary's prepared for the journey, pictures before leaving.
 They managed to lay down and get some rest before leaving.
 Then they began the journey to Bethlehem,
 on the path Lily created with all the pillows and blankets.
 They arrived at the stable, animals watching,
 where Mary gave birth to baby Jesus. (sorry for the blurry picture)
 Then she laid him in the manger.
 And Sam just looked cute the entire time.
 It was a really fun way for us to bring the story to a level where they could understand it more.  Next year the girls told us that mom and dad would be Mary and Joseph and Sam will be baby Jesus.  Eloise and Lily will be playing the part of the angels. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

catching up

it's been a while..yet again.

*Eloise is 5.  She napped 2 hours today.  She's still up (it's 9:30) and I'm pretty sure she'll be up until midnight.

*Do you know how hard it was to wake her from that nap?  It took several trips into our room, me turning on the light and Sam jumping on top of her head.  She wasn't too happy about the head jumping.  But he did start calling her "EZ" for Weezy.  These two are BFF's

*Sam is starting to talk more.  It's weird to have a non-verbal kid following to VERY verbal daughters.  There is alot more whining and tantrum throwing.  I guess that's what you have to do when you don't have any words to use.

*We cut Sam's hair for the first time last night.  I pinned him in my lap, Dave cut and the girls tried to crowd around in our tiny bathroom.  It was like two people trying to wrangle a slippery pig, crying and squealing included.  I should have put a lollipop in his mouth.  Oh well, no he no longer has a baby mullet.

*Eloise needs to get her hair cut too but can't decide between short or long.

*Eloise has preferences...who knew?!  She will only wear skirts with tights (the ones with feet, not he cute ones with leggings) and has an hour long dialogue with me about what type of coat to wear.  It was incredibly frustrating to deal with at first.  She has so many cute pants and really, if it's cold out, wear a coat.  But, I realized that she has preferences. She's becoming her own person and wants to have an opinion about what she wears.  It's going to happen sooner or later, so why not make it an enjoyable process for the both of us instead of a battle. We'll take a trip to a cute store, (my choosing, of course) and let her pick out some cute skirts and tights we both love.  Problem solved.

*I took Lily and Eloise seperately to buy gifts for each other.  They each had $5 to spend and it had to be something the other person liked.  Eloise had so much finding something for Lily and Lily had so much fun finding things for herself.  We had to do some prep work helping Lily learn how to keep a secret.  So far, so good. 

*As for the gifts, Eloise picked out a small doggie for Lily and Lily picked out a pretty bracelet for Eloise.  Cute!

*We made Christmas cookies the other day.  All my sprinkles are gone.  But what's a sugar cookie without a lb of colored sugar on top?