Sunday, February 25, 2007

Weekly Update

I have been doing bad about blogging these last few weeks. It looks like I am turning into a once a week updater. Our weeks are pretty busy these days with everything from church, school, parent council, after school activities, meetings, etc. that I have little time to read and update. But it is great therapy to do it at least once a week. On top of that, Jeff and I have been trying to find more ways to spend "us" time. That always seems to take the back burner to everything else, but I have truly come to the conclusion that it is the most important (for us and our kids). So last week, I decided that we would "fast" from our nightly ritual...him vegging out in front of the TV and me spending time on the computer. For one week, we cannot turn on the TV or the computer after the kids are in bed. It was so hard for us (actually, it was only hard for Jeff, it did not bother me at all), but it has been such a blessing. We have spent so much time together and it has been, well, different, but nice. I encourage each of you to try it! It's amazing how nice and quite the house is, how you find creative ways to spend the time, how much we have talked, how much better we have slept, and on and on.

A side bar comment, what has happened to the sanctity of Sundays? I remember growing up, we would go to church, come home to eat a big home-cooked meal together, nap for about an hour or so, then go on a Sunday drive. It was an all family day, and a restful one at that. We would ride around in the country together, and if we wanted to stop in and see one of my dad's ole buddies or one of my sister's friends, or just anyone we hadn't seen in awhile, we would stop and visit for awhile. No advance planning, just spontaneous "fellowship". Today, Jeff was off at softball practice with his team. Addie, Matt, and I were cleaning up the toys around the house, when out of nowhere, a knock on the door. I panicked...because I was in Russell sweatpants (yes, I still have a pair and I love them!) and an old T-shirt, Addie and Matt were naked (only panties and diaper), and our house was a complete mess. Sunday mornings are a rush, so we always leave it in a mess. It was Jeff's cousin, Casey, and his wife and daughter. They were on an afternoon walk and just stopped in to visit. They never come to our house, so it was a pleasant surprise. They stayed about an hour or so, we talked and the kids played, and it was just so nice! It reminded me of those old Sunday drives...and how much I loved in-home visits with people like that. Maybe it's the difference of living in a small town vs. a big town, or maybe it's we are just busier and Sunday's are a time to catch up...either on sleep, housework, errands, whatever, or maybe it's just we have become so far removed from "bothering" people...I don't know...but I miss it. Just a thought.

Until we are done "fasting", I hope everyone has a great week!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Winterfest Weekend Blessings

I am so blessed. #1-to have 3 amazing sisters. There is nothing in this world that is more special to me (outside of my husband and children) than my 3 sisters. #2-to have an incredible husband. Even though it is hard financially sometimes, I am so thankful that he has chosen the field that he works in. Not necessarily his daily job, but with youth. He is a natural working with teenagers...and is definitely using his talents wisely. #3-to have been at Winterfest 2007. It was an absolutely perfect weekend. And to worship with 12,000+ fellow Christians on Sun. morning (or all weekend for that matter) was an amazing experience. #4-to have an amazing church family. It was so neat to be with a diverse group of people and to bond with each. I remember when I was growing up, the night following the last day of a church retreat, church camp, or any other 2+ day together with people from church, the feeling that I had was so neat. I missed each person and the group as a whole, I was refocused, I missed the "safe" feeling of the weekend, I was bonded, there was unity, and on and on. That is how I felt last night and today, too. #5-to have 2 children that love me so purely and unconditionally. I missed them so bad, and the feeling I had when I walked in the door and they almost knocked me down...tear...they are so precious! And I am thankful to know that they were in the best hands possible while I was gone.

For each minute that God put me in this past weekend, I am so thankful.

Pictures of Addie and Matt and their "classic" Gatlinburg gifts from mom and dad...Taffy (not pictured) and Airbrush.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Third Time is a Charm...or is it?

Have you ever had one of those days where things didn't go just exactly as planned? We had one of those days today. It started early, and continued through this evening. Nothing major, just little kinks all day. The funniest was this evening. I had decided that we would stay home tonight (for several reasons), and Addie and I would cook for Jeff and Matt. So, I began to cook around 4 or so, and all I needed Jeff to do when he got home was grill our salmon (I am not good with the grill when it is lit!). So he got home, started the grill, and began to cook. It was 25 degrees outside, but he was a good sport. After about a minute on the grill, he came in and said the gas had run out. So, Plan B...use our indoor grill but on the back porch (for obvoius was salmon). Well, that didn't work either because of the temp. would still be cooking. So, Plan C...grill salmon indoors. I think anyone within a mile radius of our house can smell it! It is awful! But the meal ended up being nice...and the salmon was great!

I had some really funny pictures of the progression tonight...but it is taking forever to upload. Forget it (once again, another kink)!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Happy Heart!

We started celebrating Valentine's day today at Tuesday School with Matt. They had grandparent's day, and it was alot of fun. We will continue tomorrow with a cookie decorating/Valentine's party with Addie's class. Then, Addie and I had planned on cooking supper for our men and having a candlelight dinner tomorrow night, but then we remembered it was church night. So, we might do it tomorrow or we might wait until Thursday night. Either way, I am sure our day will be filled with lots of candy, hugs, kisses, and fun. Hope yours is filled with the same.

Matthew and Ma-Jo.

Matt, Nana, and Papa (he was done with pictures here).

Matt and Ma Jo playing Monster Trucks

Papa, Nana, and baby Nora

Just a recent funny picture of Addie and Matt-they are a mess!

By the way, the title of this post is from a cologne that I tried at my mom's recently-it is by Clinique and smells absolutely wonderful! And I love the name of it.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Cabin Fever

Addie, Matt, and I spent the entire day at home today. We did not get out once, not even to walk to the mailbox or anything. It has been a long time since we have done that, and although it was nice to stay in our PJs all day and spend good time playing together, by this evening, we were all about to climb up the walls. It was fun, but they were wired, and I was exhausted. I am such a home body, but all day with a 4 year old and 2 year old with no change of scenery will make anyone have a little cabin fev. :)

Hope everyone is having a good, relaxing weekend as well! Stay warm!

Monday, February 5, 2007

The Best of Both Worlds

I am so blessed to have 2 healthy, beautiful children. And on top of that, to have the joys of both a boy and a girl. From Batman to Barbie, trucks to tea parties, trains to princesses...they could not be more different in their tastes. For Addie, it is all about the posh and fru-fru (she can be a little bit tom-boy, or I guess athletic would be a better word, but she prefers anything pink). For Matt, the rougher the, guns, monster trucks, loud toys, balls, etc. This weekend, we got to experience a little of the monster trucks...yes, we were one of the 10,000 rednecks that went to see the Monster Truck show at UTC. It was really kind of neat to watch...and Matthew (as well as Addie) truly enjoyed it!

Addie and Charlie.

Jeff, Matt, and Tommy

Monster Trucks in action (whew!)

Matt, the engineer, working with his trains.

Addie working with her Barbies (as you can see, my kids enjoy playing their birthday suits?!?)

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!

OK, so anyone that knows me well knows that I love winter and especially the snow. I have always said that one of the drawbacks of living in Chatt. is that it never snows. I am always homesick when I talk to my mom on the phone and it is 45 degrees and raining in Chatt. (miserable!), and they have 6 inches of snow in Cookeville. So I was really glad when I heard that it was supposed to snow on Wednesday night because I was going to be in Cookeville for the night (for my brother-in-law's dad's funeral). I just knew I would be snowed in up there. As I awoke on Thursday morning in my (childhood) room/bed, I felt like a kid all over again and immediately looked out my window to see the winter wonderland. However, there was only a light dusting. Nevertheless, I was still glad to at least see some snow. I called Jeff a couple of minutes later to see what it was like in Chatt. only to find out that there were about 2-3 inches there. So I guess the snow just doesn't like me. When I called Jeff, it was 7 am CST (8 am EST), and they had already been up, outside playing, the neighbor kid was over playing, and the neighbors across the street were out taking pics of our kids. I suppose you can tell that to say my kids were excited to see snow is an understatement, not to mention the "big" kids in the neighborhood.

When I got home tonight, this is what is left of the snowman Addie built this morning: