Saturday, January 31, 2009

Random thoughts on a Saturday morning...

Sigh.

Last night my glasses broke.

This morning, as I was taking a photo of them to blog about, the baby puked over my shoulder onto my newly mopped floor.

After I got dressed this morning (a long time after), I felt a lump on my boob. I put my hand in my shirt to find my sons athletic sock stuck to my undershirt. The sad part is I have so much fluff on my own body, it took me hours to notice the extra padding.

Here is what my calendar, entitled 365 reasons to eat chocolate, says for today.

I taught my kids to count using little chocolate candies. They could make it to 20 before either of them stated school, but I gained five pounds.

I think I wrote this calendar in another lifetime.

Addison is still keeping us very busy...here is a glimpse into her every day activities


video

Friday, January 30, 2009

totally immersible

I was washing my electric fry pan today like I do almost every day and I read that raised letter word on the bottom of the pan, immersible.

Lately I have felt completely immersed in parenting. I can't get away from it. It's everywhere. I am constantly asking, telling, debating, feeding, diapering, clothing, disciplining, caring for...kids. If kids were water I would be drowning. I can't imagine having more than four.

After I wallowed in the misery I can only blame myself (and the last several cold South Dakota January winters) for, I thought about immersion a little more deeply.

I found myself wishing my life was completely immersed with God. Not just Sunday mornings and when we sit down for a family meal. I mean really immersed, so much a part of my life that I am surrounded by it all the time. Oh how I want to read that book every minute and have the Holy Spirit guide my every move, my every breath in this life. I closed my eyes and prayed for immersion, just like when I was baptized at the age of ten. That day my mom had to leave my brothers at home because they were sick and our pastor came to our house and baptized them with the water from our kitchen faucet. The day I became a member of the church and a part of the family of God.

All the spit up and dirty dishes and soiled laundry in the whole wide world can't keep me from love of God. I just wish I would remember that more often.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

I'm curious

Do you think HE performs miracles today?

I was doing my homework today and she suggested that many of us are leery of committing to saying that miracles can happen in the present.

The way I see it, there is a plan for each and every one of us. What it takes to reinforce our belief in Him is different for all of us, right? So we could define certain parts of His plan as little miraculous moments in our life...keeping us on the path of believing, AND hopefully encouraging us to pass the WORD on, if you catch my drift...

Whatcha think?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Family weekend.









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My sister and her crew were here all weekend. It was wonderful. The kids played outside and went sledding and got pulled in sleds by the four-wheeler and went ice-skating and we ate yummy food and got to catch up. I love family weekends.

Here is the new yummy recipe I tried.

Chalupas
· 3 pounds pork loin roast
· 1 pound dry pinto beans, soaked overnight
· 2 garlic cloves, minced
· 2 tablespoon chili powder
· 1 tablespoon ground cumin
· 1 teaspoon oregano
· 1 can green chilies, chopped
· 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
Topping:
· Grated cheese
· Chopped onions
· Tomatoes
· Lettuce
· Sour cream
· Crushed corn chips
Place first 8 ingredients in crockpot. Cover with water. Cook 7-10 hours.
Remove bones and mix well. Top with desired toppings. (I used leftover pork roast and just heated it all in the oven with a little water to keep it moist)


We made homemade tortillas!


Flour Tortillas

Serving Size: 12


4 c. flour (I use half wheat flour)

2 t. salt

4 t. baking powder

2 T. shortening

1½ c. warm water

Stir together flour, salt, and baking powder. With a fork, work in the shortening. Add enough water to make a soft but not stick dough. Turn onto lightly floured board and knead 5 minutes.


Divide the dough into 12 even portions and form into balls. Roll out each ball to about 1/8 inch thick. Heat a large Skillet over medium heat. Place the tortillas, one at a time, into the dry hot skillet. Cook until brown on one side, turn and brown the other side. Remove from skillet and keep warm in cloth towel.

The power of believing or You gotta have faith

Matt 17:20 The transfiguration

...I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.


We began a new Bible study last night. New year, new study, new president....lots of new stuff. It is a Beth Moore study, Believing God. I am psyched about it. We listened to her on a cd last night I love her southern drawl. With any study you must keep yourself focused on the Word of God and measure everything up to it. I know some of my family are skeptics of evangelists. My personal thoughts are if someone can motivate you to study the Bible more and that book stops collecting dust, it's a move in the right direction.

It sounds pretty 'back to basics' Believing God, right? I think I could do the exact same study every year and learn something new. This study is mostly old testament with some paralleling to the new. It originates from a concept in Isaiah 43:10. Last night we were flipping pages so much my book was smoking (must have been the dust). Can't wait to shake all the cobwebs out and get down to the nitty gritty.

All weekend the verse I typed above has been swimming around in my head. Can my faith really move mountains? It reminds me of another verse in Philippians 4:13, 'I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength'. I know it was faith that got me through my fight with cancer. I know it is faith in the Lord that gave me the strength to make it through two pregnancies back to back. The Lord gives me strength to move mountains (of laundry) every day. Why is it so hard for us to believe it? Is it because we don't think miracles happen any more? Are we afraid to give God the credit for his Master Plan? I am not sure. Some days go by and I think I will never be able to make it to tomorrow. I should be so thankful to the Lord for his presence (and for the Holy Spirit who guides me in understanding) in my meager little life.

I have a friend whose husband is battling the big bully of lung cancer. I am going to write this 'faith can move mountains' verse in a card for him this week. I pray that he will believe the truth of it and his faith and God's love will help him get through the journey he is just beginning.

A few years ago I found a little plaque on clearance in the holiday section. It said, "Believe". I bought it because I wanted to hang it year round in my house to remind me that God is with me all the time and to remember how important my faith is. (If I could only find it in one of my closets.) With my faith and His love I can be the best mom,wife, sister, daughter and friend to others in my life. Thank you Lord for giving us your Word so that we can study it and believe in you. I pray that all who do not know you will find you and with faith, believe.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Pretty polka dot princesses





Alliteration was on the lesson plan earlier this week. When I got the girls dressed this morning the polka dot princess thing got in my head and I had to take a few snapshots. Nora is three months and Addison is almost 15 months.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Mr. Mom (and oh my it's been awhile since I've posted)



Alas, my friends. The moon has turned ago many too times, Ay, I have neglected to post. Parting has been no sweet sorrow. The calling of myself and my employment has left my plate too heavily burdened to accomplish much ado about anything else.

The sophomores are studying William Shakespeare. Did you know that there are only 5 known authentic signatures of the man and each is worth 5 million dollars? That's something to put on your thrift list. I would research it first, though, because I would never have guessed his signature read his name it looks more like chicken scratch. Believe or not I learned this from my husband who is currently reading the kids encyclopedia.

Last week at a Horizons committee meeting I told the school superintendent that I would like to be put back on the sub list. I've been at the school three days this week. Guess the education market is pretty solid.

My husband and I had the discussion about me subbing back in August when he had to make a decision to take the weekend job or not. We determined, together, that is would be good for both of us. I would 'get out' per say and we wouldn't need childcare for the day as he would be home. I am not sure he realized what he was getting himself into. Luckily the Lord planned for us to be weaned into it.

The first day I was scheduled to sub, the weather got nasty real fast and I only had to be away for an hour. The second day was pretty tough on all of us. When I was able to find a free moment to come home and feed her she was in her daddy's arms screaming while Addison was taking the aluminum cans out of the recycle bin and playing kick the can in the kitchen. Dad had his hands full. We had planned to attend a basketball game that evening but by 730 pm we were all snoozing on the couches and chairs in the living room.

Yesterday went much better. I was able to come home and pump during a prep period. When I arrived home the living room and kitchen were neat and tidy, the dishes were done and the girls were both sleeping soundly. Dad (aka Mr. Mom) was just sitting down to a hot egg sandwich and a steaming cup of java.

I have to be honest and tell ya, at that moment I was more in love with him than I have ever been before. I sat at the table and had an adult conversation with him about something and it was perhaps the most enjoyable moment of our entire married lives as of yet. What kind of man can do all the things a man usually does (ie outside chores and mr fixit) and can still maintain a house? I am the happiest girl in the world. So what if the poor bloke used laundry detergent in the softener dispenser and didn't know whose sock was whose. Oh, and he learned the hard way that diapers go on immediately after the bath. Thank goodness for solid toddler poopies! This morning Gavin came out of the bathroom and said, matter of factly, to his father, "Dad, this bathroom needs to be cleaned, too." You can add bathroom cleaning to his list of mastered household duties. I am telling you he must be ill, and I hope it's chronic and contagious.

School was late this morning, it is currently something like 25 degrees below zero. During the breakfast routine dad starting speaking in another language. I think his exact words were, "Do we have any other kind of cleaner? That bleach is really hard on my hands." I almost choked on my eggs.

The kids had time to play this morning together before the day had drained their politeness and made them baby lions and tigers. Maleah set up her 'throne' in the hallway and gave specific instructions that in her absence (school) Addison would be the replacement and we had to obey her every command.

So, it's gonna be a pretty normal day around here I think.

Stay warm!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Bringing in the new year our style






In true Rani fashion we are running a bit behind.

We decided to bring in the new year with a fire in the pit. Yes, it is Jan. 5th. We spent the real new year in the 'burb driving back from Minneapolis. It was dandy. Dad had to work new years day and the weekend so today is our first day in the new year together.

The kids wanted to go for a bike ride with their new bikes which was quickly discarded for having dad pull them in the sleds which fell hands down to making a fire and roasting marshmallows. The day is short here, people, not enough time for everything.

The kids were searching the yard for "kindling" (word for the day) when Gavin saw a huge pile of sticks right across the alley. I guess the word for the day could have been stealing, swiping, or borrowing. The neighbors just moved in wonder what they think of us?

I took the three youngest to the doctor today, by myself. I couldn't bring myself to wake my groggy husband after 4 shifts in a row. So I let him sleep. I don't think I will do it again. Addi tried to steal cheerios from another toddler AND her mom. Gavin played roller derby with the doctors chair and Nora nursed the whole time, even during the actual check up. My doctor was sweet she just said, as her head was behind the sheet, "you are pretty good at multi-tasking these days, huh..." I sent Gavin out to push Addi in the stroller during the exam, I am not THAT bad. I kept thinking I bet everyone in this whole office knows why I am here...and it's not because I am prego again.

Addi lasted about 15 minutes outside, her little cheeks were as red as an apple when she came to the door to come in. Then we played put the hat on and take the hat off for about 10 minutes before she crashed in the chair. Nora is asleep in the swing and daddy and the kids are roasting marshmallows. It's 5:46 on the first Monday in January, 2009 and I am soaking it all in.

Happy New Year everyone. Much love to you and yours.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

the power of suggestion or subliminal messages

Remember when everyone said if you play some rock bands music backwards it would say subliminal cultic messages? Well, it was scary but at least people could not easily play the tapes backwards without special equipment.

My mom saw this doll in Shopko this weekend and had to try it for herself. Then she tried it out on some other people in the toy section. Everyone agreed that they heard the same thing.

You decide.

Watch this video.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Just for today...

With January comes this overwhelming sense of 'I will never ever be on top of things' ness.

It happens every year and I can feel it creeping up on me as early as December 1st. I struggle to get the tree up, to decorate the house, to make the cookies, to find Christmas dresses, to plan a birthday party, to use up the rest of the flex dollars on the health plan, it is completely and utterly nauseating.

Then comes the day that we have been talking about for months, planning parties for and reading the Bible stories about and 'poof' it's over before we can say Happy Birthday Jesus.

No wonder I am so depressed come Thanksgiving. I can't remember actually looking forward to Christmas morning in a long time. I hate that last minute rush to wrap gifts and lay out stockings. This year I got up three times in the middle of the night so the kids would be surprised come early in the morning. I don't particularly enjoy doing that. I am not a night owl.

So now it's January, time to clean out the closets and find spots for all the new toys. The house is never big enough and I am losing my sense of organization more and more with every year and eash added child. I put it off, stuffing the closets full of things until I can't even open the doors without having a mess to pick up.

I have been wanting to start subbing again. We really need the extra cash and I do miss the work. I know that as soon as I do, though, the baby will stop nursing. It is already starting to happen. We have been supplementing a 2 oz bottle of formula a day. I get so stressed out at the holidays going to gatherings and trying to nurse a baby. I bought a really pretty cover this year and it has helped, but my body still doesn't feel as relaxed as if I was a home and I can't properly feed her. It saddens me and my heart aches with a strong piercing pain. I know that as soon as she realizes that milk from a bottle comes out so much faster and feeding time is quicker she will lose interest in nursing and then I will be propping bottles and going about my business at home instead of holding my baby and enjoying her. I hate that about me. I appreciate nursing her because it forces me to sit down with her and hold her and watch her chest rise and fall and listen to her swallowing clicks and see her smile with contentment. My to do list looms above my head but I know I can't carry her around attached to me to get things done so they have to wait. When I can prop a bottle I can (and will) knock a few things off the list while she is drinking, sad but true.

The kids came to me at 9 this morning saying they were bored. Can you blame them? A week and a half of non-stop go go going and then everything comes to a screeching halt. It doesn't dawn on them that they can play with those new toys or with each other. I am busy cleaning and doing laundry and shoving things in closets so they feel like I am ignoring them and end up pouting or watching crappy television for hours upon end. I wish I could make time stand still while I played with them so I could have everything done and have been a good mommy, too. I know that this time is so short. Looking at my oldest and wondering where the last seven years has gone makes me want to spend every moment I can with them.

So, I throw the to do list out the window and sit, still in my jammies, on the floor in my cluttered living room and play cars with Gavin and help Maleah dress her Beverly Hill puppies and nurse my baby and show the one year old how to hammer the balls into the holes.

I am sure not to regret it.