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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Not so fast.....

My quest to get rid of as much superfluous stuff as possible continues.  The fact of the matter is that nobody cares two cents about anything that I'm hauling out of here.  Of course this clean up is a covert operation, happening mostly in the quiet moments I find myself home alone.  Which makes it a painfully slow process but if they knew how much I'm pitching and donating suddenly everything would be a treasure and I'd have drama on my hands.  Case in point.....Lucy's changing table.  I don't remember the last time it was used, in fact it's been in her closet for months (maybe a year?) until I could decide what to do with it.  Yesterday afternoon Lucy feel asleep on the couch (we've given up naps...another blog, another day) so I seized the moment and ran upstairs to declutter her room.  I pulled the changing table out of her closet and pushed it into the hallway for Kevin to carry out to the van.   Bye bye unneeded furniture!  Later in the evening Lucy walked past the table, stopped in her tracks and exclaimed "OH!  My changing table.  This is a very good place for me to have it!"  I explained that we didn't need it anymore.  She collapsed into tears and told me she needed that table for changing her night time diaper (which we've never, ever used it for) and that she didn't want to give it away.  I got choked up too, I suppose it had something to do with giving away the very last piece of baby furniture. So today I pushed it back into her room where we used it this morning to take off Lucy's night time diaper, Lucy's legs hanging over the side, looking like the world's biggest baby.  My baby on her changing table for just a little while more.

  Bags and bags of books have made their way out of this house over the last month.  Even though we have 4 copies of Goodnight Moon, Lucy is unwilling to part with those either.  In her defense, they are each different.  One board book (this is our third board book of GNM, each girl had and demolished her own), one small hardback, one large hardback and one paperback.  

Of course a pattern is emerging as you can see......

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Snow judgement

It's another beautiful morning in St. Louis.  This shot from my front porch doesn't capture the blowing, twirling snowflakes but they are picture perfect....if only the photographer knew how to take a photo of such details.  I love winter and snow.   I'm not counting the days until spring and I'll take as many more days of this as Mother Nature wants to give us.  I know that this is not how many people feel about waking up to another day of snow and certainly not to another snow day (we're 1 of maybe 2 public school districts actually going to school today).

Something I'm working on in the new year is being mindful of my judgement of others.  I've always thought I was pretty good at this but still judgmental thoughts creep into my head.  When I read the Pope's ideas for New Year's Resolutions I really appreciated what he had to say about judgement.....

Stop judging others. 
In the same way he denounces gossip, Francis condemns prejudice.
He reminds “intolerant” Catholics, for one, to respect atheists. “If we, each doing our own part, if we do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter: we need that so much. We must meet one another doing good.” 
He also says of gays: “If someone is gay and seeks the Lord with good will, who am I to judge?” 
Francis urges us “to keep watch over ourselves.” “Let us not forget that hatred, envy, and pride defile our lives!” 
Though it's simple and seems harmless enough my rolling eyes and snide internal comments about FB posts about having to stay home with kids on another snow day are indeed just what the Pope cautions us against.  There's no love or understanding in that.  My judgement is of no love, my understanding my prayers, that's what's needed.  
So I will remember today as I enjoy this snow that my kids are going to school.  I don't know what it's like to be on our  6th snow day since January 6!  That's what many families in St. Louis are having yesterday was a holiday and many schools had Friday off for a teacher work day.  That's a whole lot of time for kids to be home, for many parents to have to arrange alternative childcare and for stress to build.  Might there be a few frustrated parents?  Yes.  Can I understand why?  Absolutely.  Need I judge?  Nope.  Pray?  You bet.  

Thursday, January 16, 2014

It's shaping up to be a good year

In a ridiculous move late last fall Netflix took Murder, She Wrote off of streaming.    It irritated me, my older girls and possibly up to 15 other people.   Our outrage was heard and JB is back!  2014 is looking good!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Happy Birthday to a guy who will take a discount.

Today is Kevin's birthday and we took him out to breakfast at The Original Pancake House to celebrate!  At breakfast Kevin mentioned that he knows someone who knows the person who started The Pancake House.  Emma asked if this guy gets a discount.  Kevin didn't know but said "he's not really the kind of guy who would take a discount anyway" to which, without so much as a moment's hesitation, Emma replied "Well you are".   Kevin and I laughed so hard at her honest response.  The girl knows her dad well!   

Happy 38!  I love you so much!  

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Great Purge of '14

We have too much stuff.  It's that simple.  I've been wanting to purge for awhile now but the time just wasn't right.   But today?  Today the time is right.  Just Lucy and me and a nice long day.  I started with toys and books.  The picture below is some of what has been saved from my wrath.  Double that pile and you've got what is on its way to Goodwill...or the trash.  

It's going to take awhile and I'll need to ask for some more patience but I am so excited by the thought of the end result....less stuff to manage.  Because honestly that's just how it feels sometimes like I'm the manager of whole bunch of junk.  I'm a little embarrassed to admit we have an over abundance of stuff but it's true and I have to face the music...or in this case, the toys.

Monday, January 13, 2014

It's Monday

Today I'm thankful for

This gizmo

 I always put my smoothie in a jar and often end up not making it too far through the smoothie before having to leave to take the kids to school.  Now with this new thing a ma jig I can take my smoothie to go!  I'm not much of a kitchen gadget person, in fact I don't really like them but this is awesome.   

Patience and Grace

 I pray for it often and boy God gives me a lot of little ways to practice my desire.  This morning as I got everyone out of bed much, much earlier than anyone wanted to be moving, I kept asking for patience, and a gentle voice and lots of love.  One of my girls howled in bed for a good 20 minutes, the other two had sleepy eyes and quick tempers.  I just kept praying and smiling and hugging and I can happily say that everyone left for school with a smile.  I'm so thankful for God's grace and for the moments that I share that grace with my girls.

My Core Group

We started up again this morning after a long holiday break.  Really, rather than going to Core Group I wanted to do a lot of little chores that have been piling up around the house.  I kind of wanted to run outside at 9am rather than on the treadmill at 5am.  I would have loved to have read my book on the couch with a cup of tea.  I went to core group anyway because I knew it was where I was supposed to be.  As always I left thankful to my core that I get to spend time with these amazing ladies.

Emma and her pencil sharpener, which was maybe her favorite Christmas gift!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

If I were to write a book......

I'd title it "Listen to me, schedules work, I'm living proof---the life and times of an ordinary mom".  We are just kind of hanging on by a thread over here.   Our brains tell us we'll feel better once we're back to normal but we're struggling with the follow through.  All I can say is --Hooray for Monday!  It's going to take a few days but I'm looking forward to the easy way things flow when we're on track.

Lucy at the play room at the zoo on Friday.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Oh January

It's our second snow day and I'm hoping for another happy one.  I started my day nice and slow in front of the living room window and the fireplace making plans.   

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Best day!

A whole day at home with no plans!  Though I know it's early in the year, I think it's safe to say today will be one of the best of 2014.  A walk, the park, great meals, a homemade pie, lots of snuggles, warm blankets and a fire, cocoa, Matlock (they're hooked!), last minute homework, anticipation and then confirmation of a snow day, a musical performed by the Baum Girls, and all that wonderful snow! Let me linger in my bliss before you remind me that sometimes one day more is one day too much.  However,  I'm already making my plans for tomorrow so bring on that snow day!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Eleanor is 8!

Eleanor turned 8 on Tuesday!
What at gem she is.
She's insightful, honest, thoughtful and observant.    
She is wise and empathetic, calm and good deep down to her toes.
She loves to laugh and her laugh fills our house with happiness.
She doesn't like sarcasm or poking fun at anyones expense.
She has high expectations of herself and everyone else
She likes sports and art, and zebra print, lots of zebra print.
She is a whiz with numbers and her words flow beautifully too.
In addition to all of this she is a contradiction every single day and I love that.  She reminds me to never put limits on anyone, don't box them in.  We get to change our minds, we get to be who we want and are called to be.

Christmas morning.  

"Do I contradict myself?  Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes"
Walt Whitman "Song of Myself"
Whitman wrote it and Eleanor  lives it!  Oh, how I love you Ellie!!