Saturday, December 31, 2011

Here's to letting go

Man of the woods just a few months old at the office, with his Nana.
I'm a live big or go home kind of gal. I've done it with everything in life, just ask my Mom. So when my sneaking suspicions were confirmed that I was going to be a Momma, I knew just what I wanted that to look like. I even had it prioritized! (Don't get me wrong I knew enough of myself to know I wouldn't even come close to the perfect Mom, but I sure was going to be a good one.)

Working hard
My list:
1.  This baby was going to know that I loved Jesus with all of my heart.
2.  I was going to continue to work and mother.  I had the perfect set up and my boss was family.
3.  I was going to keep working in the church just as hard as I always had.  It would be a good lesson for sweet little baby to see ministry in action.
4.  I can hardly even remember what this one was, something about always being involved in baby's life.  Whatever that's supposed to mean.  I'm a Mom of course I'm involved!

I was sick as a dog the ENTIRE pregnancy, but I didn't let it slow me down.  I still worked with the teens, I still worked at my job, I still went on vacations.  I even went out of state with a group of teens.  Of course you  are now thinking one of two things, 1.  She doesn't really understand morning sickness.  Or 2.  What is this girls secret?...Let me tell ya I understand morning sickness ment loosing 14 lbs in 12 short weeks and motion sickness for 8 1/2 months.  My secret?  Ziploc.  Gallon sized.  Nothin' amazing.

Man of the woods was born after 29 hours of labor, double contractions and all.  It was amazing!!  Nobody can accomplish more then a women bring life into the world.  It's just beautiful.  He came out screaming like all babies do.  I quickly realized that somebody forgot to tell him there was more to life then screaming.  I mean sleep was important too.  He just kept on screaming, for 6 months before we realized he had an allergy.  Cows milk.  Who would have thought?  By eight months of not sleeping priority number two, uh yeah, GONE!!  And what a relief it was.

Two months later the rumblie tummy said we were growing another one. I thought," this is it. It's going to be a breeze the first is always the hardest so they say." Well I don't know who THEY are, but THEY are WRONG! I was so sick, by far worse then the first go round and this time depression was thrown in for fun too (a side effect of one of the nausea medications I had to take). I kept going, working in the church and mothering and it was good, well at least in thought. I was wiped out and it was honestly a huge strain on all of us. A year in a half later priority number 3 GONE!  Coming home from the mission field I said I would never let go of this one.  Even so I was saddened but grateful to be able to focus on my two little men.

That's where I decided to have one goal as I raise these handsome boys of mine. I was going to make sure they knew I loved Jesus more then anything. Again I thought it would look much different then it does. I thought I'd play with them, train them, teach them, and much more. That I do. but some days it looks very different then I ever expected it to look.

Laughter & Great Grandpa Joe

This coming week.  I've asked friends of all sorts to be around my house so that they can love the boys for me.  I know that I am broken now.  I know that right now I can't mother the way I want too.  So if I can be around but have help loving the boys then that's what I'll do.  After all we are the body of Christ.  One of the best things I can teach them is that I'm not the only one that Loves Jesus and my way of doing that isn't the only way.

Here's to letting go of expectations.

Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit."  Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow.  You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.
~ James 4:13-15

1408.  Freedom from expectations.
1409.  Learning again the meaning of the body of Christ.
1410.  Many friends willing to walk with me as I struggle.
1411.  Many who adore my boys.
1412.  Jesus' love being shown in uncommon ways for our culture.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Home alone tonight.

The house has been quiet for hours now.  The three men went to town to play games and eat out.  I'd say a great man date.  They begged for me to come along too, but today it would have ended with hurt hearts. 

As I change medications my mind jumps from one emotion to the next so simple things drive me to fiery anger.  For example:  I've spent many days in bed this week so when I came out of my room sweet Laughter was overjoyed to see me. He reached out to pat my leg as he said with much glee, "Oh Momma! You here!" I tried hard but still in harsh tones I told him not to touch me as I walked past him out of the room.  In the moment it was the nicest thing I could have done for him...Pretty ugly huh?

I don't know how to see this coming or how to stop myself from these harsh words.  For now until the medications kick in I'm staying at a distancing hoping and praying the Lord will allowing them to forget.

These are the times were I'm constantly reminding myself that this hidden sickness that I have isn't just for me to learn and grow from, but for my men too.  My marriage is sacred.  My Boys gifts from the Almighty.  This sickness too a gift for all of us.

In all their affliction He was afflicted, and the angel of His presence saved them; In His love and in His mercy He redeemed them, and He lifted them and carried them all the days of old.
~ Isaiah 63:9

1399.  Still wanted after all my harsh words.
1400.  Man dates.
1401.  Time alone with God.
1402.  Silence.
1403.  Doc to see me straight away.
1404.  Coffee with my Helper of men friend.
1405.  Encouraging words; a prospective I can't see on my own.
1406.  Bedtime cuddles.
1407.  Little boy prayers just for me.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas 2011

Since just after Thanksgiving weekend we have each day sat down to read a bible story leading up to the birth of Christ.  The boys loved it.  I loved it.  It helped up the excitement for Christmas day.  Some things didn't go as planned but the only one I'm kind of sad about is that we never got to put the star on our Advent tree. On the upside there are many more Advent trees to come.  I will deffenately do it again.

I couldn't think of a better way to share our celebration then with my thankyou list.

1373.  Board games with many people to play with Man of the woods.
1374.  Not just fun games, but great teaching games too.

1375.  Nana loves.
1376.  Many hands & hearts to love on the boys over the weekend as I struggled with severe dizziness.

1377.  Big Christmas breakfast; starting the day in fellowhip.
1378.  His and her coffee cups.
1379.  Laughter enjoying tea with marshmallows to begin his day, or at least it sat in front of his plate.
1380.  Fresh fruit to nibble on all day long.

1381.  Little boys begging to share a bed.
1382.  Laughter wanting his own bed after falling out.
1383.  Favorite toys to cuddle with.
1384.  Writer sister getting her wish of sharing Christmas night with them.

1385.  Many laughs.
1386.  Conversation around the table long after food has been put away.

1387.  Gifts of love that are not in the least bit practical. (Strong man's favorite kind.)
1388.  Practical gifts. (My favorite kind)

1389.  An open fire place.
1390.  The crackles of burning wood.
1391.  Hot apple cider.

1392.  Out of state family to play with.
1393.  Coffee dates full of heart conversations.

1394.  Daddy loves.
1395.  Sneaking away to have time with my best friend and soggy snacks.

1396.  Irreplacable gifts of love.

1397.  Epic - Family jokes.
1398.  The whole family sitting around the living room watching movies together.

1398.  Hats of all kinds.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Suffering with a hope

Do you remember the story of Elijah?  He was an amazing man of God.  He's the one that challenged the prophets of Baal to a test of who's god would hear and burn the sacrifice.  Of course the True God not only made fire consuming the entire alter, but also the dust and water surrounding it.  He then said that a heavy rain would come, even though it hadn't rained in years.  And so it happened.  He was a man of God.

And yet just after these two miracles happened he heard that Jezebel, a mere queen that didn't follow the True God, was planning to kill him within 24 hours.  So fear driven, he ran.  Out of reach of the nasty queen he begged God to take his life so it wouldn't be taken by her.

For a minute I'm going to put in some of my own thoughts here:  Could Jezebel really kill him?  Not likely he had just destroyed all of her prophets and requested heavy rain with God granting it.  3 1/2 years earlier with God's blessing he had called off all the rain and dew.  If God gave him that much power then why would he run from a mere person.  Not to mention that if you give people stuff they tend to side with the one who gave and he had just called rain back into there lives.  One more thing.  When he originally called off the rain, God told him to go and hide because he was in danger.  But this time he hid all on his own accord...

That brings me back to the topic at hand.  Him running away begging God to take his life.  Elijah was discouraged, but still has a Hope.  He of all people knew God to be the Creator, so he's begging his Hope to kill him because in his mind he's the last faithful one left, and things haven't changed a bit even with all the miracles God preformed through him, so he's thinkin' he's no better then any man that came before him; why not die?  The story goes on with God not only meeting him where he's at, the dumps, nurturing him, but also assuring him that he is not the only faithful one, but in fact there were 7,000 more like him.  It wasn't Elijah's time, he still had work to do.

This is how this all relates to me:  I am deeply depressed, my world much of the time is dark.  (I'm not begging God to kill me as Elijah was.)  I am as Elijah was, in conversation with my Maker.  As heavy and soundless this darkness is, I have a hope.  I have a Maker.  I have not forgotten Him.  My Maker, as He did with Elijah, is meeting me where I'm at, nurturing me, and encouraging me.  I still have work to do.  May God be glorified through my darkness.

At the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, Elijah the prophet came near and said, "O LORD, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, today let it be known that you are God in Israel and that I am Your servant and i have done all these thing at Your word.  Answer me, O LORD, answer me, that this people may know that You, O LORD, are God, and that You have turned their heart back again.  then the fire of the LORD fell and consumed the burnt offering and the wood and the stones and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.
~ 1 Kings 18:36-38

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

I want my mind back, but God is still good.

I thought about titling this post "Medications suck!."  Here's why:  I'm coming off of one medication that had bad side effects while starting a new medication, and raising the dosage of another medication all at the same time.  A cocktail of fun.  Only we're past the fun part of cocktails.  I feel that I've had one too many drinks and am drunk only it doesn't wear off with sleep.  I'm dizzy all the time.  I'm dropping everything I try to hold.  It's extremely difficult to type, read or even finish a thought.  I've been in bed for two days because I can't control my obsessions and therefore I am agitated with no end in sight becoming frusterated to the point of harsh words or tears.  If I'm in bed the boys are less likely to ask for my help, approval or love.  All I know how to do is lay in bed.  I even have to work to sleep.
I may be full of prescription drugs. I may be resentful towards them, but in all honesty a year ago my mind began to fade away into darkness and the storm began to rule my life with tears.  As much as I'd like to, I can't blame the medications here, even if they aren't helping as of now.

I'm not really sure what's up and what's down.  All I am sure of is that my Creator has a plan, therefore I have a hope and for that I say thank You.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Chocolate yumminess!

For all those with gluten and milk allergies,
or just one of these,
or if you're just looking for a simple treat. 
This is a rich chocolate yumminess just for you! 
And it's super easy to make:

Step 1.  Grease and generously dust 8 or 9 in. cake pan with cocoa powder.
Of course turn on some good tunes to dance around your kitchen to.

Step 2.  Whisk three eggs in a small bowl.

Step 3.  Melt 1/2 c. butter (can use soy butter) and 1/2 c chocolate chips (Enjoy life is both gluten and milk free)
Step 4.  Remove from heat
Step 5.  Mix in 3/4 c sugar, 1/2 c cocoa powder, eggs, 1 tsp vanilla

Bake for 30 minutes at 300 degrees.

Next make a peanut butter sauce.
I had no recipe so here's what I did.  Took some peanut butter, a bit of water to thin it, and some confectioner's powder.  I heated it up and mixed until smooth.

Now this is where things went a bit wrong for me.  I tried to drizzle the sauce on the cake but it more or less glopped on.  So don't judge the looks, just go by the taste.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Tis the season for agitation Falala la la la

Not to bust any body's Very Merry bubble because mine isn't even close to busted.  It's been a while since I've shared where I'm at with this whole depression thing.  I'm learning not just with myself but also with others who walk this path beside me that holidays are very difficult times.  So here I am livin' with my arms wide open and sharing with the world!

I'm no longer in tears everyday and I haven't spent time just staring at the wall not really sure what it is that I'm thinking about.  Instead I've had more energy.  I'm still down but smiles come easier these days.  I'm constantly agitated and in the snap of your fingers it can turn to snarling anger.  I find I am constantly reminding myself that it's okay for little boys to be little boys.  I'm also finding that I'm taking more time outs then the hoolies are these days.  I deeply love my boys and refuse to punish in anger even if that means that I go into time out or that I need to apologize for sending them away from me so I could have some breathing room.

Add to all of that, three days before Christmas I am starting a new medication and coming off of an old one.  The Doc. knows that if I don't like what it does to me today then I'll go without until after Christmas.  I refuse to have my Very Merry Bubble busted.  At the ages of two and three these are the best days our family will have.  The boys are soaking up the excitement of Jesus birth.  They still love the idea of giving over receiving. 

I refuse to sacrifice these days to some crazy-who-knows-what-it-will-do-to-me-medication.

1363.  A Doctor who understands motherhood.
1364.  A supportive husband.
1365.  The birth of the Messiah
1366.  Great ages to teach and celebrate with little ones.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Webs, giggles, and sticky treats...

I made marshmallows today...

As the boys were licking the whisks clean I wondered what I had been thinking in making such a sticky treat.

Not too much eating actually happened.  They did love the "web" effect the warm marshmallows had.

Okay so Laughter did enjoy the flavor just a tad bit.

As the were standing in chairs eating and playing with the "webs" Laughter had one string of stickiness almost touching the floor. 

Would I make this sticky treat again?  Most certainly if not for the sole purpose to hear the boyish laughter that comes along with it.

Even clean up was fun...And it just so happens that my bestie was making marshmallows with her hoolies today too.   If you'd like the recipe just skip on over here to her blog; Life with my boys

Let your father and mother be glad, let her rejoice who gave birth to you.
~Proverbs 23:25

1359.  Sticky gooy mess.
1360.  Little boy joy.
1361.  Quality time with my hoolies.
1362.  Yummy treats.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Peanut butter balls

So I know that a lot people use graham crackers in there recipe, but this one is a little different and still very delish...

 Mix together:
3 Tbs butter
1/2 c peanut butter
1 c confectioner's sugar
You'll know it's all mixed together when it looks like the above picture and basically is one huge ball.

Roll into one inch balls.  Set out on wax paper.  You should end up with about 2 dozen.
They are suppose to sit for 20 minutes, but usually by the time I'm done rolling them all out the first one has sat long enough so I go directly to the next step. 

Melt 6 oz chocolate chips.
Depending on my mood I put a little bit of vegetable oil (about a 1 Tbs) in the chocolate.  This makes it a little softer and easier to roll.

Let set until the chocolate is firm and then enjoy!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

It's been two years!

The labor I went through with Laughter was much easier then my first.  There were a few bumps along the way but nothing too serious.

I spent the first 6 hours doing last minute chores.  Mostly I drank in the last few hours I had of just my Si guy and I.  When Strong man called from work to see how I was doing I was feeling so good I told him he should go to the basketball game we had planned on attending together.

I only went to the hospital because my contractions had became 3 minutes apart.  It wasn't until during one contraction that I went from 4 centimeters to 8 centimeters dilated that I began begging for drugs!  However there was no time.  Meds weren't really in the game plan anyway.  I had been expecting hours upon hours of the intense labor as it was with my older son.  In less then two hours after I arrived at the hospital and only four pushes I was holding my sweet Laughter.

I had no idea that I was bleeding way too much, needing a shot of something. All I could focus on was that my son was purple and wasn't breathing. The professionals seemed to think this was somewhat normal.

Once he caught his breath he screamed just fine.  It was beautiful.

He was beautiful.

In just a few weeks it was obvious that he would live true to his name of Laughter.

He's gives great snuggles.

He was walking by 9 months.

He has always wanted to do whatever big brother is doing.

And now, this year...

He's potty training.

He loves hats and life.

He only stops when exhaustion takes over.

He has a choo-choo dance and whenever he can he goes without clothes.

For now I'm the women he adores.

"Can a women forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb?  Even these may forget, but I will not forget you."
~ Isaiah 49:15

1358.  A God who will never forget.