Wednesday, December 30, 2009

42 days!!

42 Days....42 DAYS....FORTY-TWO DAYS!!!!!

Holy Cow!! Do you see my baby ticker people??? Yeah, it says 42 days! Where in the heck has the time gone? I remember when I watched my ticker go from 100 to 99 days, and thinking, wow, I have less than 100 days left to go. Now it is less than 50, and actually closer to being less than 40 after I come back to work after the 4 day weekend. pretty much how I feel right now. I'm as big as a freakin' house, I can't stop eating, I'm already at my 'normal' full-term weight (which is 170 pounds people...yes, it is...totally not kidding)..and I still have a little over a month to go. Either my baby is going to be a freakin' monster of a kid, or I'm just eating so much that all the weight is in my boobs and bootie, which is entirely possible.

Even with all of this weight, I'm still all like, "I'm going to do a triathlon next year". Yeah, that's my biggest fitness resolution for 2010. I'm turning the big 3-0 next year (April 22nd), and I really want to have something pretty nifty to show for my 30th year on the planet. I definitely won't be ready to do it ON or near my bday, since I'll only be a couple months post-baby - but I've been in contact with a triathlon trainer who says it's feasible to be thinking maybe an August/September date. And don't be thinkin' Ironman people - I'll be doing what they call a 'Sprint' triathlon - where all the distances are pretty short (in comparison to an Ironman) - but it will still be the biggest athletic challenge I've taken on in my entire life.

My maternity leave from work is rapidly approaching as well - so I basically have 42 days to close off or transition every open item I have. You know what I did last week, and part of the week before? I went through 700+ emails in my Inbox...yep, I did it. When we transitioned from good ol' Outlook to Gmail last year for our work email, I just never really got the hang of how Gmail labels and folderizes I just didn't...and every email that I received (unless it was junk, or I totally didn't need it anymore, and deleted it) was still in my Inbox. So I spent countless hours either labeling and folderizing my emails, or deleting ones that were no longer necessary for me to keep. Now I have 43 emails...hmmm, 43 emails to close off in 42 days. Can she do it?? Not sure, I've got a pretty big project on my plate right now, that will honestly probably still be going on by the time I get back. But, I should be able to get a pretty large chunk closed off...and that feels pretty good, because I was in somewhat of a panic mode a couple weeks ago. :)

Oh..OH...OH!!!! I get to go over and see my BFF and her kids tomorrow!!! This is the BFF I have mentioned a few times that was moving back here to AZ because her hubby was deployed to Afghanistan for 6 months. She moved back to our hometown, and is staying with her mom. Her 5 year old daughter will actually be going to the same elementary school that we attended...kinda weird. I actually lived back in my hometown briefly while my oldest was in 3rd 6th grade teacher was the principal of her school. Anywho - I'm totally excited to be able to spend the next 5 or 6 months being able to hang out whenever our schedules permit - which I'm hoping is often. The great thing is her being here will coincide with my maternity leave, so we should be able to visit with each other quite often. YIPPEE!!

OK...well, this will most likely be my last post for, this year flew by didn't it?
Wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year - when we come back, we'll talk about resolutions some more. Doesn't that sound FUN???!! hehe (that was sarcasm, in case you didn't catch that...teehee)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Great Debate

OK - so I tried to pawn this topic off on my wonderful bloggy friend Alisa, over at Faith Imagined, because God is using her in a tremendous way to explain things of God in a practical and easily applicable way. I emailed her my thought for this topic, and she writes back telling me that I did a great job explaining it and she'd love to read it on MY blog. WHAT???!!! (hehe, love you Alisa!) You want ME to step out of MY comfort zone, and allow the Holy Spirit to use me on my very own blog that is only sometimes sprinkled with my spiritual thoughts? Ummm...I think I have to wash my hair. What if people don't like it, what if it's not applicable, what if, what if, what if??? But then God says, "What if it's what people need to hear, regardless of whether or not they agree?" Ummmmm....OK.

So, here goes - the title for this topic is the "Great Debate". What debate, you might ask? The Merry Christmas vs. Happy Holidays debate. (eeeeeeeeeek!! I can hear the shrieks and gasps now) Is she really going to go THERE? Yep, I am.

So, I personally have not taken a strong position on the whole Happy Holidays vs Merry Christmas thing - I don't get up in arms when people say Happy Holidays to me. My grandma, on the other hand, totally does - even to the extent of no longer shopping somewhere because they say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas. And I know that a lot of Christians feel the same way.

I was just talking to my co-worker yesterday who is also a Christian - and I was telling her that this year, I was experiencing way more people telling me "Merry Christmas" (Costco, Verizon, Cable company) - and she said she just had the opposite experience when she went shopping this weekend, and everyone was saying "Happy Holidays", and it was really bothering her. It's almost as if when we go out, we are waiting with baited breath at the end of every shopping transaction to hear what the person behind the counter is going to say.

So, then I said to her, "I'm pretty sure the word 'Holiday' is derived from the two words 'Holy' 'Day'. And the only person I know of that is Holy is Jesus. So, the people that are trying to be politically correct, are still telling us to have a Happy Holy Day". And she said "Wow, thanks - I guess I won't get so irritated by it anymore".

Just to make sure I was telling her the right thing, I did some internet searching as to the origin of the word "Holiday" - and fortunately I was right. hehe :) It comes from the Old English word "hāligdæg" (hālig = holy, dæg = day).

I think sometimes we spend so much of our energy being upset about something that rubs us personally the wrong way, and in the grand scheme of things, it is SO not about us. So, we react negatively, and then wonder why people don't like Christians? In my opinion, I think if someone tells us Happy Holidays, we should say "Thank You"...and not get mad that someone is offering a nice statement to us. The world is watching us as Christians, and a big part of what they are watching for is how we react in situations. If we aren't acting any differently than anyone else, what draw does Christianity have on a non-believer?

Phew...I did it...please don't stone me now. hehe :) And have a very Merry Christmas, and Happy Holy Day.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Friday Fill Ins!

It's time for Friday Fill Ins!! Yippee!

1. No, we will NOT be watching Sponge Bob Square Pants Christmas for the 80th time in a row (okay, who am I kidding, yeah we will - because Baby Pants likes it - and who can resist hearing a toddler say "Pun Bob Scare Panth Kissmas Mommy!".)

2. The new kitchen table is laughing at the old kitchen table.

3. I watched the steam rising from the hot cup of coffee (or tea) and thought: man, I must not have anything to do if I can sit here and watch steam rise from a hot cup of coffee (or tea).

4. Having to spend over $1000 on getting my car road-trip ready is going to be okay.

5. I'll take one freeway minus the Snow Birds...thank you.

6. I think replacing presents with memorable experiences is going to be wonderful, at least from my point of view.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to my friend Sandie's 50th bday party (woot! woot!), tomorrow my plans include teaching a My Smart Hands demo class at Momma's Organic Market as well as watching Cita do a Christmas performance and Sunday, I want to go to church, watch Monkey do her Christmas performance, and probably do some laundry!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Weekend Update - On Wednesday (yeah, I know)

OK, so I'm like what, 3 weeks behind on Marriage Monday posts? I haven't blogged in almost a week. And, I have swollen cankles. What's a girl to do?
I really wanted to show you what I did this past weekend, because I actually took pictures, and then actually took the time to upload them to my computer.

So - on Saturday, I took on the nesting project of ALL time. And that was to go through every.single.article.of.four.children' Yes, I did. I made them bring out everything that was in their overflowing drawers, and pulled everything out of their overflowing closets, and brought it to my living room "staging" area. 7 hours later (yes, 7) - I had 10 bags to take to Savers (because I like them better than Good Will), 8 plastic bins of clothes we were going to hang on to, and all my girls' drawers were adequately filled and organized. I went through ALL of the socks, and if it didn't have an exact match, I threw it in a bag for Savers too. Whatever they don't keep for the store, they donate to Big Brothers/Big Sisters I I figured some of the kids would rather have mismatched socks than none at all. And my children used to complain ALL the time about not having enough my relatives would buy them more and more socks. And when all was said and done after my project, they each had like 15-20 pairs of socks in their drawers - with plenty more that I put in the donation bag. Not enough socks, my patootie. So, I told Aaron - "Please, if anyone asks you if we need some clothes for the girls...tell them as politely as you can...'Hell Freakin' No!'" Because I never want to go through that exercise AGAIN.

BEFORE (and yes, you can partially see Baby Pants trying on the tons of shoes...hehe)

And 10 Bags & 8 Bins Later... (and yes, I did use a label gun to put labels on the bins)

Then on Sunday we went to my hubby's Award ceremony for his dirtbike series. He won 1st place in two classes - 450 Beginner and 25+ Amateur. This was his first time ever to participate in an actual motocross race. A couple years ago, he bought an old beat up bike, and had been riding mostly in the desert because the bike didn't quite have the power to take on the obstacles and jumps of a motocross track. But, he did practice at the tracks every once in awhile. We all went out to watch him one night at the track, and I could tell that it wasn't that he didn't have the skill level to take on that track, it truly was the bike that was holding him back. So, for his bday last year, I bought him an 08 Suzuki RM Z450. And look where he ended up? 1st place! :)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

What in the Friggidy Frick Frack...

Am I doing up at 12:45 am, reading numerous blog posts of fellow bloggers all across the Nation - acting like I don't have to get up for work tomorrow or something?

I just can't sleep - I'm 9 weeks away from having a baby - and I feel like I have so much to accomplish prior to then, that the wheels in my head keep on turnin' (sing to the tune of 'wheel in the sky' )

Why does my husband need to sleep on MY side of the bed? I'm like 8 months pregnant, he's got a body & a half of space between me and his edge of the bed - and I'm scrunched into this little teeny tiny space, with my huge belly.

Tonight, the AWANA directors at our church had to kiss an alligator because the kids finished 100 sections in their scripture memorization books. I know it's weird, but the alligator was totally had it's mouth taped shut - maybe that's why it was cute. But my girls got to take a picture with said alligator - they printed them out, so now I"m going to have to scan them to turn them into digital images so you can see them - which I will add to my 'things to accomplish in 9 weeks' list, but I can pretty much gar-own-tee (think the Cajun chef dude voice) that it's not gonna happen - so I apologize in advance.

Too many things to be done...not enough time to do it in, and the things that I do want to get done can all be shot to heck if one baby decides to make an entrance even one iota early.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Bullets...Bullets...Oh yeah

My Title was a little song I made up in my head for my post that will be denoted by bullets. :)

  • Today marks the one year anniversary of my husband's dirtbike accident - You can read about it here. Since the accident, he has reigned himself in quite a bit, and has gone on to be the Firebird Gold Series 450 Beginner and 25+ Amateur champion! I'm quite proud of my hubby.
  • Today is also Pearl Harbor Day. Dec 7, 1941 - Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, HI. My grandparents took me to Hawaii in 1988, when I was 8 years old. We went on the Pearl Harbor tour - and even though I had no idea what had really happened there that day, I remember becoming very emotional. You could see the tip of the USS Arizona sticking out of the water, and I just started crying.
  • Oh my I had a McDonald's quarter pounder and french fries for lunch...and I ate it so fast, I don't even think I tasted it. I reached back over to the box of fries and they were GONE! So, then I looked at the box the quarter pounder came in...GONE too! I was like, what the heck, did I seriously inhale my food that fast? That's just not healthy.
  • This pregnancy has made me large and in charge. My belly is seriously huge - and it feels like the baby is taking up the ENTIRE thing. I don't even know if I have 9 weeks left of room in there for him or her.
  • The store manager of the Jack in the Box by my house (what? I don't eat fast food THAT much) told me I was having a boy. He is a hispanic guy probably in his late 30's or early 40's - and he says "You are having a boy." And I said "I don't know...I have 4 girls." And he says "No, not this is a boy." So I told him "Well, after I have the baby I'll come by and let you know." And he's like "I haven't been wrong in 16 years." So we'll see. If it is a boy, I'm up a creek cuz I have one boy outfit that I bought 'just in case' and that's it.
  • It's less than 2 weeks before my BFF moves back here to AZ from Germany briefly while her husband is deployed in Afghanistan. Even though the circumstances that are bringing her back here suck, I'm totally elated that she's going to be here. I'm excited that our kids will be able to hang together for longer than a few hour visit. I always imagined that we would live next door to each other, and our kids would be BFF's. Funny how time changes things. :)
  • Raisin Bran Crunch is da bomb!
  • I'm currently doing a Bible study with a couple girlfriends using this book called Balance at the Speed of Life for Women. It's great - it is making me realize that my plate is too full - and I'm always trying to squeeze more stuff on there. I don't know why I do this...I guess I feel like if I'm not busy, I'm being lazy or something.
  • My current nesting project is to get through all of our closets and have a yard sale before Christmas. Kind of an ambitious goal, but I really want to do it dang it. Naps just keep getting in the way on weekends.
  • I just got word from our realtor that we haven't talked to in several months on a house that we put an offer in on - it's a short sale, and it had to go through this big long approval process with the short sale lien holder. Our offer was the 'back up' offer - but there is a chance that the first people will back out. The price of $175k was approved, and the seller is offering 3% in closing costs. It's within walking distance from where we live now, but it's a 4 bedroom instead of 3, and it has a large backyard that is pretty much ready for us to do whatever we want with it because it has never been landscaped. It would take a miracle for the first people to drop out, and for us to come up with all the money for closing costs - but God is in the miracle business, so if it's meant to be, it will work out. :)
  • I'm reading a book that my 12 year old is also reading called "Leven Thumps and the Gateway to Foo". It's a Sci-Fi / Fantasy book, and it's such a fun read. There are children who have special powers, multiple dimensions, and funky little creatures. I'm over halfway done already and I just started reading it this week.
  • When my little Baby Pants says Clap, it comes out 'Cwap' - so it sounds like she's saying crap - which is really funny to me.
  • All of my girls love the band 'Weezer' - it's so fun to hear them singing "Oooo Wee Oooo I look just like Buddy Holly...Oh Oh and you're Mary Tyler Moore!" We took them to see Weezer at the AZ State fair a couple years ago - they are GREAT performers. Each band member can play every single instrument on the stage, and they all take turns singing different songs. They put on a great stage show. And they just released their new album called "Raditude". I haven't heard any of the songs yet - and apparently their tour bus got in an accident yesterday and the front man, Rivers Cuomo, suffered internal injuries - that fortunately aren't life threatening, but they had to cancel the rest of their tour dates for this month at least.
  • But to end on a positive note - Baby Pants keeps going potty in the toilet - infrequently, but she still does it. I will have to record her saying "I go potty in the toilet" and try and post it as a sound file or something, because the way she says it is freakin' hilarious!

Have a great week everyone!

Friday, December 4, 2009


So - I was gonna post about how I couldn't believe it was Friday already, and how I had a somewhat crappy week, and yada yada yada. But, then I heard on the radio that plays throughout our office building....

"I don't practice Santeria...I ain't got no Crystal ball"....and then all of a sudden, the world seemed mellow. And I wondered to myself "What it is about the songs of Sublime that make me feel really chill and in a good mood?"

It's definitely not the actual lyrics...especially since the verse I heard just now as I'm typing this was "And I won't think twice to stick that barrel straight down Sancho's throat...believe me when I say that I got somethin' for his punk ass!" HA!

But, there's just something about Brad's voice, and the rhythm of the music that just makes you bob along, and kinda feel that So Cal beachy feel.

I was first exposed to Sublime in 1996, so the only album I really have any connection with is the self-titled "Sublime" album, even though the band had been around since 1988. And by the time I got into their music, their lead singer, Brad Nowell had already offed himself with a drug overdose. So, I didn't even have an opportunity to see them live. That's a bummer.

But whenever I hear these songs, I either go back to my senior year in high school - or road trips from Vegas to California, and my most recent memories are with my family at the lake in the summer - as my hubby is also a fan. :) Unfortunately, our taste in this music, and my hubbies taste in all things classic rock have our children singing "I'm a joker, I'm a smoker, I'm a midnight toker" at the top of their lungs in Target. I know that's not a Sublime song, but you get the idea. I don't think I want my kids singing about having something for anyone's punk ass either. But just hearing that song this morning put me in a much better mood than I WAS in when I first went to start my Friday post - so now I think I'm going to run along over to and make me a Sublimey play list to listen to this morning. :)

Because who can not love "What I Got", "Santeria", "Wrong Way", "Garden Grove", "April 26, 1992", "Pawn Shop", "Paddle Out", and "Doin' Time"? :)

Happy Friday!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Post It Note Tuesday: Maiden Voyage

So, this is my first time participating in a Post-It Note Tuesday, found by visiting one of my Follower's, Lynn at Midday Escapades. I can't get their Post It button to work, so you'll just have to click on the link to go check it out. Here are my post-its for today. Enjoy! (Note: They rearranged themselves all weird, and I didn't have the time to figure it out)

And there ya have it - go make yourself some Post-It Notes!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Marriage Monday - 11/30/2009

Wow - I can't believe I've missed two weeks of my Marriage Monday Posts! Where has the time gone? I apologize for slacking off in this area, it's definitely been on my mind - I just haven't taken the focused time and effort needed to get my posts done.

So, this week, we're going to cover a couple topics, His Affection and His Temptations because they are pretty short chapters.

His Affection

I'm just going to touch on a few key points that I found in this chapter. One of the big ones is that men often view sex and affection as the same thing, so they can feel like as long as the sex life is good, then so is affection. But as women, we know that affection is totally different - it can be holding hands, an unexpected hug, stroking your hair - for most men, stuff like that doesn't come naturally. But, Stormie quotes this scripture "Let the husband render to his wife the affection due her, and likewise also the wife to her husband." 1 Corinthians 7:3.

So, it's definitely in God's plan that our husbands are affectionate towards us - but I truly think most of the time they need some "help" in this area. So, since this is Power of a Praying Wife - this chapter talks about praying for our husbands in this area so that the power of the Holy Spirit can begin working on their hearts and ours so that when the time comes to talk about affection, it can be a conversation that is received well, rather than appearing to be just something else we are nagging them about. With my husband and I, my communication to him about affection is usually very playful because that's my husband's personality I'll come in to the "Man Room" (aka the den) after all the girls are in bed, and sit down with him on the couch and say something like "Oh, what did you say? You wanted to give me a massage? How nice of you!" And then I plop myself down on the floor in front of him. We both chuckle, and he knows that I could use a massage - and he's happy to do it. He does the same thing with me - "Oh, you wanted to scratch my head? That's so sweet!".

So that way of communicating works for us. What would NOT work for us is me coming to him all the time saying "Why don't you ever give me a massage? Why don't you hug me more?". Confrontation like that usually never works for us. So, if your hubby is not affectionate or you would like him to be more affectionate, try praying for God to show you some effective ways that you can communicate that to him.

His Temptations

Now this is an area that I have more personal application with my ex-husband. My ex-husband was a compulsive gambler, and it seemed no matter how hard I prayed - and I prayed HARD and OFTEN - things never seemed to get better. When I finally filed for divorce, I felt like I had failed in my marriage - like I didn't pray hard enough, I wasn't strong enough, I should've done more. So, I was encouraged when I read this sentence on p.75 "But a heart that refuses to listen to the promptings of the Holy Spirit will not change, no matter how hard you pray." And I think that was truly the case with my first marriage - he just was not willing to change at that time in his life, and it cost him his family.

This chapter encourages us to pray in advance regarding any temptations that may come our husband's way, and to ask that they would be strong enough to withstand those temptations. It talks about temptations coming in all shapes and sizes: alcohol, drugs, money, power, food, pornography, etc. The bible says "blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him" (James 1:12). There are many other verses in the Bible that tell us that temptations WILL come, it's just a matter of when, and how we will respond. 1 Corinthians 10:13 tells us "God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." I can personally attest to that - when I was about 20 years old, I ended up in a very bad situation with a guy I had just met. He had his plans for how he wanted the night to work out, and I felt somewhat trapped. I didn't know what else to do, so I went to the bathroom, and just prayed and asked God to please help me find the way out. Seriously, minutes later, I started throwing up EVERYWHERE, and he left me alone and I got out and went home. I know it's gross - but I know that was my way out that God provided for me.

I've been very fortunate in my marriage to Aaron, I haven't seen too many temptations in his life, other than "the need for speed" - but this too can definitely be an issue - one that landed him in the hospital for a week last year with a lacerated liver. I don't know that I prayed specifically about that as a 'temptation' but I know I prayed that he would be more careful and realize what he had at stake. And I have seen him reign himself in and be more cautious when he rides his dirtbike, since he knows he has a family at home that needs him.

No matter what our husbands temptations may be, our prayers can be very effective in helping them resist those temptations. In Stormie's example prayer, she says to pray for a wall of protection to be around our husband, that he will have the self-control to resist anything or anyone that becomes a lure, and to give him the courage to reject tempting situations.

I pray that today's Marriage Monday post will find its way to those who needed to hear some of these things today, and that we will all put prayer for our husbands as a top priority in our lives - as it will not only benefit them, but will ultimately benefit us and our family. I know sometimes all the things we have to pray for can seem overwhelming - I could probably pray for hours on end just to get out all of the things that I want to pray about. But God knows what is on our hearts, He just desires for us to be in relationship with him - so don't think your prayers have to be a certain length, or that you have to pray them all at once. I find that I get my most prayer time in on my way to and from work in the car - in fact I rarely listen to the radio anymore because I know that I will have uninterrupted time on my drive. Once I get home, I won't get time to myself again until my children are in bed...hehe :) So, whether it's finding time when your kids are at school, or when they are taking a nap, or when your making your daily commute - you may have to sacrifice something else (for me it was giving up listening to music on the way to work - which I really liked to do), I guarantee that you won't regret having that alone time with God.

Next week I think I'll do 2 chapters again so I can get caught up - His Mind and His Fears.

Happy Monday!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Finally...The Announcement

So the time has finally come – the time to announce my new business venture. This has been in the works since about October 2008, but the majority of the work on getting everything going started about August of this year. I haven’t breathed a word of it to very many people, because I have a tendency to get excited about an idea, and announce it to the world, and then I lose my excitement and don’t follow through with the idea – and I end up looking like a dork. But, with this venture, I have really committed, and have a fully legal and established LLC. The fire was lit under me when I found out I was pregnant with #5, and I really wanted to be able to do something that would allow me to be with my children and still contribute financially to the household. So, without further adieu…

I am pleased to announce the launch of:
My Smart Hands – Phoenix
Sign Language Classes for Hearing Babies and Toddlers.

This has been an exciting and scary journey to get up and running – but I am thrilled! Aaron and the girls are extremely supportive - as we all have witnessed first-hand the benefits of signing with our youngest daughter. Since making this decision, I have taken formal American Sign Language classes, as well as a class on Early Childhood Language Development - and one of the first lessons included research on the benefits of signing with preverbal children!

I have my first location for classes locked down in Old Town Scottsdale, at the Art of Dance studio ( – and since I’m still currently working full-time, the classes will be on Saturdays. But once the baby comes, my plan is to start offering weekday classes as well.

This is a link to my website – I’m currently looking for additional class locations in North Phoenix, Central Phoenix, and Fountain Hills at this point – so if any of you that are local to the Phoenix area know of any locations that rent their space out, I would greatly appreciate the contact info.

I will be holding my first marketing booth at the Momma’s Organic Market ( this Saturday, November 21st from 9am to 2pm. Since I don’t sell an actual ‘product’ – I’ll be giving away free bubbles, Hawaiian leis, and stickers to the kids, and teaching them the signs for 'bubbles' and 'necklace'. I will also be accepting class registrations and selling gift certificates for classes as well.

A special "Thank You" to my grandma Billie for always telling me I could do anything I put my mind to. I thank God for all of the wonderful people He has put me in contact with that have helped me to make this busines possible. And I'm looking forward to the additional time I'll be able to spend with my children during their formative years.

Woo Hoo! Here we go! (I'm jumping out of the boat Alisa & Crissy!)

Weird Dream and Some Other Stuff

Okay - so, in case you noticed (or maybe didn't notice) - my Marriage Monday post is missing. It's coming, it just might be a Marriage Wednesday or Thursday.

But, because I had some things on my mind - I thought I would post today instead of waiting to get caught up, because this is my blog, and I can do that if I want. ;)

Last night I had this WEIRD dream - where I got an email from this ultrasound technician at my OB's office and it said something like "Oh, the new ultrasound guy just looked at your ultrasound pictures and he wanted me to tell you congratulations on your new baby boy!" I was SO MAD in my dream! In case some of you don't know, we are letting the sex of this baby be a surprise since we have 4 girls, and we figured since this will be the last baby that we wouldn't find out if it's another girl or potentially a boy. So, this dream really chapped my hide because I didn't want to know the sex, and here this ultrasound tech is sending me emails telling me what I'm having! Now of course I realize that this is just a dream, and may have no bearing on what actually may come to pass - but I'm just sayin'. Weird pregnancy dreams I tell ya.

Baby Pants has become a master manipulator with this new wake up and cry routine she tried to start this past week. She did it on a couple of week nights, and I thought "Awww...poor baby she had a bad dream" so I brought her into bed with us. Then, she did it again on Saturday & Sunday night - and we had my father-in-law in town, so in order to let everyone get sleep, I brought her in bed with us again. But neither hubby nor I get any sleep when Baby Pants is in the bed because as small as she is, she somehow takes up the whole darn bed! Her head is shoved into the side of my neck, and her feet are pressed against her daddy's back. So - hubby and I said "No more" - and when she woke up at 1am this morning crying - I went in first, and calmed her down but told her that she needed to go back to sleep. This really made her mad - so I asked if she needed a diaper change - to which the crying immediately stopped, and she said "Yeah" - so she stayed quiet in her crib the whole time I went to get the diaper and throughout the diaper change process. As soon as I said 'Good Night' and started to walk away - the wailing began again. Also as a side note, my oldest daughter shares a room with Baby Pants - and we felt bad for her, so we got her up and moved her mattress to our den so she could attempt sleep. When Baby Pants saw this, she got another fantastic idea "I'ant (this is "I want" in Baby Pants language) Seena (this is SAMs name as Baby Pants says it)". She thought if she couldn't sleep with mom and dad, she could sleep with her sister! I said "No - this is YOUR bed, and you are going to sleep in YOUR bed." and closed the door. Her wailing was very artistic - she played with several pitches and tones, and cry styles from sounding very pitiful, to screaming like someone was poking her with a stick - and pretty soon hubby and I were actually laughing at her repertoire. But, by this time it was 1:45am - and we wanted to go back to sleep. So....we sent in the Big Guns...Daddy went in. I heard him give her the same conversation that I gave her, about her sleeping in her own bed, yada yada. Then he said "Ok, now go to sleep"...and 3....2....1...."AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!". Then, the magical words were spoken in only the voice a daddy can do, that strikes fear in the hearts of little children everywhere - "Do you want a spankin'?", to which Baby Pants replied "NO!"...and she was quiet for the rest of the night. So, we'll see what happens tonight.

And finally - I have a couple updates to make to my business website tonight, and then I'm launching it TOMORROW, to the rest of my family and friends, this blog, and my online mommies community. I've been wanting to do it for awhile, but I always had an excuse - "This piece isn't ready yet.", "I want to do this first", yada yada. I'm very nervous, but very excited - my hubby is behind me, my kids are stoked, so off we go!

OK - I think that's all I need to get off my brain for now. Look for Marriage Monday, debuting on its new day this week only - and for my business launch! Yippee!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Just some random thoughts from me today - of course it isn't the same as bullets, because I'm going to use asterisks instead!

*Dude - preteen attitudes suck. So, SAM is signed up for volleyball, and all of her games are on Saturdays. Tonight at our mid-week church thing, she finds out that the junior high kids are doing some kind of activity that will start on Friday night @ 11pm and have them playing laser tag, ice skating, and then gallavanting around until 7am on Saturday morning. I told her "Sorry, you can't participate, you have a commitment to your volleyball team." To which she got all pouty and pissy and door slammy and go to bed without saying goodnight-y. Argh. I wanted to smack her...but I didn't, so don't call CPS on me or anything.

*Baby pants pooped and peed on the potty for the first time yesterday. It was a monumental event. Of course my husband was all "Our daughter is going to be the first child potty trained before two." I really wanted to correct him to let him know that I'm sure there have been other children potty trained before two - but I didn't. See, Marriage Mondays are working! :)

*Monkey is going to be 5 on Saturday...FIVE years old people! She was student of the week at her preschool, and I had to go back to the archives to dig up newborn / baby / toddler-ish pictures of my little Monkey - made me get all nostalgic and stuff. I can't believe she was that little - and now she's just a big ball of chatter-face...with all her "Mommy...Mommmy...Mommmy! Remember that one time?"

*Cita is being Cita - she's always tried to be somewhat of a second mommy, and she's very patient with Baby Pants - but with Monkey, she acts like an annoyed, burnt out parent that's worked a very long day. So...what I'm saying is...she sounds like me. I just want her to be 7....I keep telling her that it's mommy's job to be the jerkface, and that she should just be a kid.

*I got my oil changed yesterday, and watched Divorce Court where this lady told the judge she was consistently abducted by aliens. I almost peed my pants laughing...she also imitated her husband eating a bologna sandwich. It was funny. But because I'm still getting over this upper respiratory thing, every time I laugh, I sound like Marge Simpson's sister who smokes 8 packs a day. It's not cool.

*My toenails need painting - I can't reach them - and I don't care.

*Since when did driving EXACTLY the speed limit in the fast lane on the freeway become an epidemic in Phoenix? It really bothers me - in fact, I used the carpool lane 5 minutes earlier than I was allowed to, to get around said speed limit obeyer. (NOTE: In Phx the carpool lane becomes a regular lane from 9am-3pm, and then again from 7pm-6am or something like that)

*I ate a sausage mcmuffin (without egg) for breakfast this morning

*I had a lot funnier random thoughts earlier today when I was thinking about writing this blog

*Oh yeah - I've kept a plant alive in my office for like 10 months! I'm turning into Martha Stewart or something - she's the only person I could think of - I don't know any famous plant-keeper-alivers.

*I love reading other people's blogs - they really make my day, or they make me cry - either one, or sometimes both.

*Why do farts never stop being funny? You know how when you hear the banana knock-knock joke 80 bajillion times when your kids start learning the knock knock joke concept - and you laugh for about the first 10 times they tell it - but then you just look them straight in the eye and say "ok - it's not funny anymore"? But, by the time they are five, you have probably heard them toot about 100 bajillion times - nevertheless the 101 bajillionth time is still freakin' funny.

*9 more days till "New Moon" comes out

*Why do I care about that?

*Because I'm a dweeb, that's why.

*I have cankles.

*Yesterday I caught a glimpse of my butt in these maternity pants I was wearing - and I wanted to cry. I looked like I had a foot long butt, that had been mooshed flat and wide by a shovel. Can I please trade this butt in for my 19 year old butt?

*My husband raises his arms over his head when he sleeps on his back - he didn't believe me - I took a picture

Monday, November 9, 2009

Marriage Monday - 11/09/09

His Sexuality

So, this week's Marriage Monday chapter is on our husband and his sexuality. I got two paragraphs into this chapter and read this:
"It isn't that the wife cares nothing about that part of her life It's that there are so many other things screaming for her attention, such as raising children, work, finances, managing a home, emotional stress, exhaustion, sickness, and marital strife. In the wife's juggling of priorities, sex can end up on the bottom of her list."

I don't know about you ladies, but these few sentences describe me. This is kind of a personal subject to talk about - but, I'm pretty sure there are many other women out there that feel this way. It's not like I don't WANT to have sex with my husband, I just have so many other things going on, it's like...when do I have time for THAT? And it sucks, because I know for him, he would probably want to have sex every day, multiple times a day if he could. So, where do we find a balance that works for both of us, you know?

On page 62, the author goes on to say "A man can easily be made to feel insignificant, beaten down, discouraged, destroyed, or tempted in this area of his being. There is probably no more important means of fulfillment for a man, and no area where he is more vulnerable."

Wow - I knew dudes liked sex, but it's sometimes hard to grasp that it is SO important to them.

This chapter talks about praying in this area of our lives, so that we can get somewhat on the same page as our husband as far as desire. And if there are times when we aren't quite feeling it, that we would pray that we would have renewed energy, strength, vitality and a good attitude. And then to take 10 or 15 minutes and prepare ourselves physically and emotionally, by doing things that make us feel pretty and desirable - fix our hair, put on lingerie, put makeup on if you want - I know I don't feel too in the mood or sexy when I'm my sweatpants that have 8 holes in the butt and a ratty old tank top, and my pits stink from a long day. :)

Page 64 talks about the flip side - what if our husband doesn't seem to care about having sex? The author suggests that we pray about this as well for insight into what's going on - she says "If there is no physical problem hindering him, maybe he's having deep feelings of failure, disappointment, depression, or hopelessness that need to be addressed - prayer can help reveal what the problem is and how to solve it."

So, to wrap up today's Marriage Monday - I will be honest and say that this area is something I definitely need to work on. I pray that I can meet this need in our marriage better, and that I can do it before things take a turn that I don't want it to take.

Next week we'll be talking about "His Affection" - have a great day everyone!

Friday, November 6, 2009

What A Week!!

Phew - TGIF, seriously! This week was certainly crazy, and I'm pretty glad it's over....well, I guess we technically still have the weekend - and heaven only knows what joys that could bring with some of the drama that ensued this evening.

But - the week started out with everyone in the entire house being sick. I thought we would just tough it out, since any fevers that presented themselves were pretty much gone by Monday. But we all sounded like a bunch of barking seals with our coughs, so I took me and the 3 younger girls to the doctor first thing Tuesday AM. My oldest said she didn't need to go, she would just take some cough medicine - and she actually did sound better than the rest of us.

So - 4 copays and 1.5 hours later - we were all diagnosed with upper respiratory infections, with my 4 yr old, Monkey, being kind of the worst out of the bunch with bronchitis. They sent us off with our prescriptions for Amoxicillin (for the girls) and Cephalexin (for me) - those were promptly filled at Target for $4/piece, thank you very much - and now here we are....on day 4 of our antibiotics - still hacking up a storm, but 'feeling' a lot better.

Yesterday was actually my first day back in the office in 4 days - I stayed home on Friday because that's when Baby Pants started getting sick - and then I stayed home Monday through Wednesday of this week. By the grace of God, some of the high priority stuff that has been burdening me over the last several months took a bit of a breather this week, so I didn't return feeling COMPLETELY overwhelmed - just a teensy bit. :) Next week I'm sure it will be taken up a notch - I don't think I've ever wanted to see a project get completed as much as I want this one to be over with. It is very brain intensive, and my brain just isn't up for the challenge with all this baby growing I'm doin'.

And BOY am I baby growin'. I think I'm at a total weight gain of 25 pounds so far - and I still have 3 months to go. I really need to start getting some exercise in - even if it is just taking a walk around the block every night. But with everything going on with the kids' mid-week activities, and my job and everything - I just don't have the energy. But I'm going to have even less energy once the baby comes if I don't get to somewhat of decent pregnancy shape. Also - my belly is so HUGE - it seriously looks like I have a basketball stuffed under my shirt - an extra large one. I waddle like a duck and I have sleep with a pillow underneath the side of my tummy when I sleep on my side. I had an appointment this week, and they did an ultrasound to follow-up on my placenta previa that they had detected at my 18 week ultrasound - but it 'resolved', according to the doctor - so I don't have to worry about needing a c-section or anything - which is awesome. They said the baby weighs 2 pounds - and we're having a bit of confliction going on with the due dates - from the get go, I have been using Feb 10th as my due date because I used a due date calculator online with the date of my LMP - but apparently the doctor had put in my chart Feb 1st - and then after my first ultrasound, they bumped it to Feb 8th - but according to my measurements of this latest ultrasound - it looked like Feb 3rd. So, I guess somewhere between Feb 1st and Feb 10th I'll be having a baby. :) OH - I also had to do my glucose test with the sugary drink and getting my blood drawn - that was a blast. I actually don't do too bad with the needle poke thing.

The drama of the week revolves around the living situation we had with my 21 yr old brother-in-law living with us again. Not going to go into great detail, we're just all sort of at our wits end as to what to do. I've received some great input from some friends, and we've tried to offer some solutions to the guy, but he refuses to want to take responsibility for himself - and his mom keeps covering for him, so he doesn't really have a reason to. My poor husband feels like he can't win, because he's got me, a mother of four that works full-time and is hormonal and pregnant - dumping my emotions out about the situation - and then he's got his mom crying to him about how he needs to take care of his brother. So, this morning I apologized for making it worse, and that I would support him in the arrangement he had made with his brother which was to allow him to stay until mid-January, which is a few weeks before the new baby is born. But, apparently tonight his brother didn't fulfill his end of the arrangement which was to pay $100 in rent - and he is now 'kicked out', aka homeless...which is making his mother very upset, which is making my husband very upset. So, I'm just praying for something positive to happen.

Anywho - that's pretty much my week in review. I'm trying not to make any other plans for the weekend besides going to my girls' volleyball and soccer games, church and maybe a new bible study on Sunday night. But it is my hubby's birthday tomorrow - I gave him his presents early because I got him personalized riding gear for his motocross racing series, but it ended a couple weeks ago and I wanted him to have it for his last race. So, not sure what I'll do for him tomorrow - he's out riding right now with some buddies. He doesn't like sweets, so I can't bake him a cake (not like I'd be any good at that anyhow...hehe). I'll probably just make him some bacon & eggs in the morning. :)

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Marriage Monday - 11/02/09

Power of Praying Wife
Chapter 3 - His Finances

So - I was on a hiatus last week with Marriage Monday - but I'm back - I may have to do a mid-week edition as well, so I can catch up.

Our whole family is sick - I spent today disinfecting the entire house - I felt pretty good earlier, but as the night wears on, I can feel the congestion building in my throat again. Good times. Not.

So - Chapter 3 is on His Finances. To be honest, I don't think the chapter was long enough - and it didn't really go into a lot of detail. I think the prayer she included at the end about our husband's finances is way better, so I'll probably end with that.

I have been married once before, we shared a bank account, and my ex-husband had a gambling addiction. This was not good. So, when Aaron and I got married, we were two very independent people, and I think we were both on the same page about keeping our finances separate. The cause of so much strife in marriage is due to finances, and my Dad had mentioned before that he and my step-mom kept their finances separate and they've been married for 15+ years. I think it depends on every couple. But, I had 3 children before I met Aaron - and I will obviously have expenses for them that I wouldn't expect him to pay for. He also has vehicles and toys that he had before he met me, and wouldn't expect me to pay for. So, we share the common household expenses - rent, utilities and groceries - and once those are paid, we are pretty much free to do what we wish with the rest.

Fortunately for me, I think Aaron does a pretty good job of managing his finances. He knows when to cut back on extras if he needs to, and he is very generous when additional funds come his way. But I understand not every man is like this - the author mentions that there are men that are miserly with their money and men that are reckless with it. The best thing that I think we can pray for our husbands is that they truly come to an understanding that everything they receive comes from God - it's ours to steward, and we should be the best at that as we can. We all have areas to grow in concerning our finances. I recommend a book called "Money. Purpose. Joy" by Matt Bell - it's been very helpful to me as I try to get my own finances in order.

So, as I said I'm going to end this Marriage Monday with the prayer from this chapter:

Lord, I commit our finances to You. Be in charge of them and use them for Your purposes. May we both be good stewards of all that You give us, and walk in total agreement as to how it is to be dispersed. I pray that we will learn to live free of burdensome debt. Where we have not been wise, bring restoration and give us guidance. Show me how I can help increase our finances and not decrease them unwisely. Help us to remember that all we have belongs to You, and to be grateful for it.

I pray that my husband will find it easy to give to You and to others as You have instructed in Your word. Give him wisdom to handle money wisely. Help him make good decisions as to how he spends. Show him how to plan for the future. I pray that he will find the perfect balance between spending needlessly and being miserly. May he always be paid well for the work he does, and may his money not be stolen, lost, devoured, destroyed, or wasted. Multiply it so that what he makes will go a long way. I pray that he will not be anxious about finances, but will seek Your kingdom first, knowing that as he does, we will have all we need (Luke 12:31).

Here are a few reference verses as well from this chapter:
Luke 12:29-31
Ecclesiastes 5:19
Proverbs 28:27
Psalm 37:25
Phillipians 4:19

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Writer's Workshop from Mama Kats

OK - so Marriage Monday was on hiatus this week as you may have noticed. My 4 yr old was sick all weekend through Tuesday, and then this crazy project that I've been working on for the last couple of months required I work long hours yesterday and today and in fact, I should probably be doing some work right now, because now my youngest is sick and I'm going to have to stay home with her tomorrow - but I really don't feel like it.

I feel like participating in Mama Kat's Writers Workshop -- you should too, it's fun! :)

I chose prompt #3 - "Write a poem to your child as their Halloween character"

Oh Daphne from Scooby Doo

Dooby Dooby Do, Where are you?

Your Orange Hair...the wig you wear...did you just find a clue?

Not so sure about the short dress

You're only 4, I must confess

You will wear's cold at night...and skin you'll show much less

You my dear are much too young

To even remember the Scooby fun

But Daphne you'll be...with joy and glee...and in go-go boots you'll run

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Squeezin it in

So I feel like the last couple of weeks have been a blur - all I've managed to post is my Marriage Mondays and a funny YouTube video. So, what's been up in the life of Crystal you might ask? Well, you might ask, but then again you might not give a crap. hehe :) But I figured I need to unload my brain now, because tomorrow is Marriage Monday and if I wait until after Monday to post this stuff, it will most likely end up being next Sunday night before I know it. Also, one of my kids has diarrhea and the other has had a 103 fever for the past two days, so who knows if/when it's going to hit me and/or the other two children. So, now for my recapitulation that I do the best via....BULLETS! But actually I think I'm going to change it up this week, and do....NUMBERS!

  1. My girls' sports activities are in full swing. SAM's volleyball team won their first game a couple Saturdays ago, and then this Saturday, they lost. But honestly, for SAM never having played volleyball before in her life, I think she is doing really well - she does not get this from me. I was a dancer, who tried volleyball because her best friend was playing, and I sucked.
  2. Monkey's soccer team tied their first game, and I didn't let her play yesterday because of the whole aforementioned fever thing. I'm one of those parents that actually keeps their kids away from other kids if they don't feel well...go figure. During her moments of Advil relief, we did let her play outside in our front yard though. I taught her some "soccer strategy" that I think was actually kinda cool - with kids her age (5 & 6), soccer is just a cluster of little legs all trying to kick the same ball. So, I told her that sometimes, you just have to run toward the goal WITHOUT the ball, look back at your teammates and see if one of them can kick the ball REALLY hard down to you, and then you are already that much closer to the goal, and you most likely won't have the "cluster" around you, and it will be easier to score. We did some scenarios where she and I were both trying to kick the ball, and she saw how we ended up all over the yard instead of anywhere near the goal - but that if I stopped trying to kick the ball, and just ran up toward the goal, then she could kick it hard towards me, and I could score the goal, and vice versa. I think she got it. :)
  3. My projects at work have been extremely crazy, time consuming, stressful and all around yucky. Sometimes I'm not sure if my bosses remember that I'm pushing 7 months preggo here, and that they should be phasing me off of projects instead of making me the lead person on new stuff. I feel like I have a lot of burden on me right now, and I don't see it lightening up until January which is just one month before I am due. I'm kinda stressing about it, can you tell?
  4. My brother-in-law is living with us...again...for the 4th time. What was supposed to be him hanging out with us on a Saturday, ended up with him sleeping on our couch for ummm....9 nights in a row now. My hubby said he told him he had 2 weeks to find a place, which would be next Saturday - but I'm having a very hard time with him here. He's 21, and has no respect for anyone or anything, he manipulates people (mostly his own mother) into giving him money or things, and will not take responsibility for anything. I'm trying very hard to have patience with the kid, but after having already offered our home to him, where he eats our food, uses our electricity/water, etc - all without paying us a single dime - it's wearing on my nerves. The first couple of times, I thought I was really getting through to him by offering him encouraging talks and showing him how he could make it on his own - but it turns out he was just sort of humoring me and all of it went in one ear and out the other. Help!
  5. I miss my mom - she moved last year with my step-dad to a little podunk town in Texas called "Happy" it's about 30 minutes outside of Amarillo. My step-dad is from there, and he has brothers and sisters that all still live in town. It's definitely a lot slower than Phoenix - and I think they really like that. And they also like being able to have so much family around. But dang it, I miss my mommy.
  6. I am getting freakin' HUGE! My belly is seriously gnarly - and my legs are getting fat. And that is usually the ONE place where I don't gain weight - I've always had fairly thin legs - but my thighs are rubbing together, I have cellulite, and my calves are bulking up. I have not been working all...this pregnancy. My last pregnancy, I was taking my hip-hop classes at the gym all the way up until 8 months - and I was working out with a personal trainer. This time I just don't have the motivation - I really just don't. I want to, but yeah, it's not there.
  7. oldest is going to be 12 on Wednesday!! Oh my freakin goodness...TWELVE!!! My baby's last year before the TEENS!! This is seriously freaking me out people. It freaked me out enough that she started junior high this year, but turning 12 seals the deal. She is a texting queen, she paints her nails, wants to wear makeup, shaves her legs, and actually has a really good fashion sense - she always looks cute. I was the one who went WAY overboard during the flourescent color stage of the early 90's - I was not cute. So, this fashion thing she also does not get from me. :)
  8. I am "this" close to going public with my business - I've gotten input from a select few people and I've got my LLC paperwork done and am officially official with that. My website is done, I have business cards, car magnet thingies, and am signed up for my first expo next month. Now, I just need to tell my husband about it, and then I can tell the rest of you! heheehe! ;)
  9. Speaking of my husband - he had his last race of the motocross series he's been participating in since July - and he WON! YAY!! There were 8 races in the series - and he only raced 6 of them. At each race, you receive a certain amount of points for the position you come in - for example, 1st place = 30pts, 2nd place = 27 pts, etc... ANYWHO - this guy who he has been competing against had participated in all of the races held so far, and he was ultimately going to win no matter if my husband came in 1st place this past Saturday or not - because he had accumulated more points from being in more races. I was bummed because my husband had worked so hard, and had been finishing in the top 3 positions during every race...and this other guy was like a consistent 5th, 6th, 7th place finisher. So - don't throw any stones - but I sorta said a little prayer that maybe this guy wouldn't show up to the final race because that is the only way my husband would win the series. I didn't want any harm to befall him or anything, I was just kinda hoping maybe he had a wedding to go to, or a bar mitzvah or something. hehe. So, we get to the race, and my hubby goes down to the line, and I don't see the other guy's bike - and I'm thinking "Really??? Did the guy really not show up??". And my husband took 1st in that heat (they race 2 heats)....and the second heat the guy didn't show up again, and my husband took 1st again! So, because of the points that he will get for taking 1st last night - he'll end up winning the series! I came to find out this morning that the guy DID show up last night - but that him and his buddy had spent the day rebuilding his engine on his dirtbike - and when they tested it, it was running too hot because of some "insert mechanical reason I don't understand here" - so he didn't want to run the risk of completely ruining his bike. Can you believe that???
  10. And now we're at #10, and it's 10pm, and I'm exhausted. You probably are too from having to read all that. :) Remember tomorrow is Marriage Monday, and we're talking Finances (EEEEEEEEKKKKK!)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wacky Wednesday

OK - since I don't have time to actually write a post, I'm going to leave you with this HILARIOUS YouTube video I found over at Not Just 9 to 5. Laughing always makes my day better...Enjoy!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Marriage Monday - 10/19/09

"His Work"
(Pages 49-54)

This week's chapter from the Power of a Praying Wife is about our husband and his work. It opens by talking about two different extremes that a man may experience in relation to work/career. One extreme is being very lazy, not wanting to find a job, and letting the wife support the family. The other extreme is a workaholic, someone who only feels validated by the work that they do, and spends much of his time away from his family.

Fortunately for me, I truly believe my husband has a pretty good balance between work and family. But, there have been times when I felt like he could probably take on a job at a larger corporation for more pay, and most likely company-paid benefits. But at what cost? Right now, he is able to pick up the kids in the afternoon because I work 35 miles away, and one of our girls has to be picked up by 5pm. If Aaron's job required him to work long hours every day, he would never be able to pick up the kids and we would have to find different childcare arrangements that offered longer hours, that we may not love as much.

This chapter talks about praying for our husbands to find the proper balance in their work. The author suggests that the same underlying reason may cause certain men to be lazy and certain men to be workaholics - and that reason is...FEAR. The man who appears to be lazy is afraid that he won't find a job that makes him feel successful, so he doesn't even try. The man that is a workaholic is afraid that if he doesn't work so hard, he won't be able to support his family financially or that someone else will be given his position that is willing to put in longer hours. And some men don't really even know what they want to be when they grow they may go from job to job trying to find where they fit.

The one thing I have prayed for prior to reading this chapter is actually for the management of my husband's company - that they would have the wisdom to accept the business that is right for them, and to decline business that would be detrimental to the company. But, I don't think I've actually prayed specifically for my husband in the area of his career because it has always seemed to go pretty well. However, this chapter encourages us to pray for our husbands even when they appear to be in a successful place - and to pray that things continue to go smoothly.

If our husbands don't have a real clear direction of where they want to go in their career, we can pray for clarity. We can pray for God to show our husbands how to put forth their best effort if they didn't have a good example set for them in their own upbringing. We can pray for opportunities to open up that our husbands would be a good match for, and that their skills would continue to develop so that they can be an asset to whatever company may hire them. If the job that they have is running them down, we can pray for God to give them strength and peace to get through the rough times.

I think maybe we don't realize how effective our prayers can be in this area of our husbands' lives because their career kind of seems to be just that...THEIR career. But because a man often feels like he is defined by the success of his work, or his purpose in life - it can affect many other areas of his life as well, which will ultimately affect the entire family. So let's be sure to include prayers for our husbands' work during our prayer time for him this week.

Next week we'll be talking about the chapter "His Finances" - can't wait to see what Stormie talks about in this chapter, finances can be tough!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday Fill Ins!

This is about all I have time for today - I'm going to catch up with a bulleted list sometime next week! :)

1. So are we going to have 100 degree temps again, really????

2. A good life is what's up ahead.

3. I love to take naps with my little girl.

4. I want to be able to be a philanthropist of some sort.

5. I walk a short distance, and I'm out of breath.

6. Having joy and peace is the true elixir of life!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Friday Night Dinner, tomorrow my plans include a volleyball game, a soccer game and then trophy trucks and Sunday, I want to go to church and take a nap!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Marriage Monday - 10/12/09

Wow - I can't believe I haven't posted since last Monday! Yeessh! We had a great weekend, it's finally cool enough here in Phoenix for the kids to play outside, so I think we spent the majority of the weekend in the fresh air. It was great! husband, Aaron, got his very first win in the 450 Beginner class in his Motocross race series! He's been finishing in the top 3 pretty much the whole series, but he finally got to take home the #1 trophy on Saturday night! YAY!

OK - now on to Marriage Monday. This week's chapter is titled "His Wife" (pages 25-47) - yep, ladies, it's talking about us.

The opening paragraph talks about how our prayers can be hindered if they come from a place of bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness, etc. And that one of the prayers that we most likely pray the most is "Change him, Lord." - instead of "Change me, Lord." I have to admit, the first time I read this chapter was several months ago, and it was during a time where we had a couple of weeks of what seemed like constant irritation with each other - so I got to this chapter and wanted to stop reading it as soon as I started. It's very hard to hear that we are the ones that have some changing to do when we are so sure it is our spouse that needs the changing. And not to say that they don't - but it doesn't help matters when we are unwilling to soften our hearts, be sensitive to the guiding of the Holy Spirit, and identify those places where we are contributing to the conflict. On page 27, the author says "The most effective tool in transforming him may be your own transformation." Uhh...whoa.

Page 29 introduces the concept of prayer being the ultimate love language, and how praying for another person can soften our hearts towards them because we receive God's spirit of love when we pray for others. I have found this to be true in my prayers for my husband - if I begin my prayers madder than a hornet because I feel like I've been wronged, by the time I finish praying, I feel closer to him and I almost forget what I was mad about in the first place. By confessing my anger to God, rather than blowing up at my husband, things usually always end up resolving themselves in a much nicer manner that doesn't involve arguing and saying the word "Fine" alot. ;) Stormie gives this scripture as a reference - Proverbs 21:19 "Better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and angry woman." hehe - I think my husband has probably felt like retreating to the wilderness on more than one occasion.

OK - just read page #35, and this line jumped out "There are times when we are just to listen and not offer advice, to support and not offer constructive criticism". Lord help me if I don't have a problem with that - my husband will try and tell me something, and just as I mentioned last week, I have that "be right" attitude problem sometimes - and all the guy really wanted me to do was listen - but I always have to provide feedback, or if he made some minor error in his telling of the story, I have to point it out - MAN that has to be irritating. Here's a scripture I'll be memorizing "Do not be rash with your mouth, and let not your heart utter anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven, and you on earth; therefore let your words be few." Ecclesiastes 5:2...again with the "whoa" - the Bible has all kinds of wisdom doesn't it?

Now I read this next part a couple nights ago, starting at page 37 - and I found myself rising up on the inside with an argument - because it starts to talk about our "role". And I am totally not June Cleaver - but I kept reading, and I'm going to have to let God help me to let some of this stuff sink in. Very first sentence of this section says "I don't care how liberated you are, when you are married there will always be two areas that will ultimately be your responsibility: home and children." Say what??!! Yeah, that's what I said too. OK, hang in there. We know that God's order is that the man is the head of the household - but what many people misinterpret is that somehow that puts the woman in a lesser position. Not so - we are the heart of the family, this is a position of great power - because you know that saying "If mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy?" - that's so true - our demeanor and the way we run our household, sets the tone for the WHOLE house. As much as I may not like to admit it - I know that I personally feel a lot better when the house is in order (not necessarily perfect, but tidy), when I'm showered, dressed in something that makes me look good and I have my hair and makeup done. you think this is internal hard-wiring? Because I know my husband feels good when his household chores are done as well. We are equal in the fact that we have become one flesh when we got married - but, just as everything else in the world has an order - gulp, I can't believe I'm going to say this - looks like God has an order for men and women and what our roles and responsibilities are in the household. OK - phew - next section please!!

Pages 39-41 talk about letting go of expectations - this is another area where I am guilty. Do you know sometimes my husband would say to me "I just don't feel like I can do anything right for ya" - OUCH! Can you imagine what it feels like to hear something like that? Especially when you don't think you're doing it on purpose? But seriously - I would ask him to do something - and he would do it in HIS way, which was obviously not MY way - and I would get SO frustrated. But you know what? The task got done. And I started to let go of expectations that he would do things the way I wanted him to do them - that might mean I would have to leave the house so that I wouldn't sit there and scrutinize (hehe) but I would no longer criticize and butt in when I didn't think things were going the way they should go. And...we can't change our husbands and their personalities anyway! It just sets us up to be more frustrated the harder we try to make them conform to our expectations! We fell in love with them for a reason - and guess what happens sometimes? Sometimes those things we fell in love with become the things that bug us the most! I loved the fact that my husband was a "man's man" - he knew how to fix stuff, and he was strong, and he loves the outdoors - and I would find myself saying to him in frustration "Gosh - you're such a DUDE!" Ummm...yeah...he is...that's kinda why you loved him because he wasn't a big wussy-pants. :)

I'm going to end with the paraphrasing that Stormie gives of Proverbs 31: 10-31 - she says to remember this model when we are praying for ourselves:

"She takes care of her home and runs it well. She knows how to buy and sell and make wise investments. She keeps herself healthy and strong and dresses attractively. She works diligently and has skills which are marketable. She is giving and conscientiously prepares for the future. She contributes to her husband's good reputation. She is strong, solid, honorable, and not afraid of growing older. She speaks wisely and kindly. She doesn't sit around doing nothing, but carefully watches what goes on in her home. Her children and her husband praise her. She doesn't rely on charm and beauty but knows that the fear of the Lord is what is most attractive. She supports her husband and still has a fruitful life of her own which speaks loudly for itself."

Now that sounds like the kind of woman I want to be (and she doesn't sound like June Cleaver)!!

See you next week when we talk about "His Work"

Monday, October 5, 2009

Marriage Monday - 10/05/09

OK - I have 22 minutes for this post to qualify as a Monday Post.

A couple months back, I came across a blog called The Great Adventure, via a comment that a fellow blogger left on one of my posts. The gal over at the Great Adventure, Katy Lin, was doing a 31-day series of praying for her husband and encouraging others to do so as well. I was late coming into it, so I didn't do it (I'm kind of a person who likes to start at the beginning). But I saw that her next series was going to be on the book "The Power of a Praying Wife" by Stormie Omartian. I was SO excited, because I wanted to read that book too.

I had been feeling prompted to track my own journey to a better marriage on my blog, and to call it 'Marriage Monday'. But, life got in the way - and I thought I had missed the boat, because I was pretty sure by October, Katy Lin was well into her PPW series (and you now know how I feel about starting things at the beginning...hehe). But guess what? I went back to her blog today, and found that she had been busy working on a ministry with her hubby, and she restarted the series over...TODAY. OK, so now I have no excuses...and this is my first Marriage Monday post.

Not really sure what the structure of my posts is going to be - I figure I'm going to go chapter by chapter, as Katy Lin is suggesting and then see what sticks out to me.

Chapter 1 - The Power (pp 13-23)

OK - wow, first page, page 13 - and this sentence hit home "It's (this book) is a gentle tool of restoration appropriated through the prayers of a wife who longs to do right more than be right, and to give life more than get even." -- I am definitely a "be right" and "get even" kind of gal - I know that many of our arguments could have been avoided if I would have been a "do right" and "give life" kind of gal instead.

This chapter also tells us that it's very likely that our husbands aren't going to pray for us in the same way that we pray for them, or even at all. This is where this thing goes against our nature of "What have you done for me lately?" (thank you Ms. Jackson - sorry, couldn't help myself). We truly have to pretty much die to that way of thinking, in order for our prayers to be effective. And I've already come across days where the last thing on my mind was praying for my husband to have a great day, and for blessings to come his way. In fact, I was thinking more like, I hope he has a really crappy day and that a bird poops on his shoulder, then maybe he'll realize what a butt he was being to me today. But that type of thinking is not what is going to make my marriage better.

A suggestion in this chapter that I think is valuable as well is to find one or two other women you trust, that you can get together with, either in person or on the phone, on a weekly basis to pray and encourage each other. We don't need to go into all the details about what a jerk our husband has been that week, but rather according to PPW "the purpose is to ask God to make your heart right, show you how to be a good wife, share the burdens of your soul, and seek God's blessing on your husband."

I truly believe that any woman, at any stage in her marriage, even if it's going great right now - would benefit from praying for her husband on a regular basis, daily if possible. I know I'm going to try my hardest to do it every day.

If you want to join along in Marriage Mondays, I would love for you to join me and share your journey if you'd like! In fact, I'm going to try my first MckLinky list. :)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thursday Survey

A big thanks to my Mommy for emailing me a survey thingie to do today, so that I wouldn't have to come up with my own post topic. BUT, I do want to say a couple of things:

#1 - Don't buy a container of mixed fruit from the convenience store. The fruit is yucky...even if you bought it before the 'sell by' date. It has somewhat of a wine flavor, and that can't be good.

#2 - My 19 month old had me crackin' up last night on our way home from our mid-week church thing. She was singing her ABC's, and at the very end, she decided to do a hodge-podge of ABC's and Twinkle ended like the "Now Ah know mah A, B, Sheee's, Nest Time Wonduh Whatchoo Ah" ha!

OK...on to the survey thingie - feel free to fill it out and post it too!

Where is your cell phone? On my desk

Your significant other? Where is he? Or what's his name? My mom put her hubby's name, so, mine is Aaron. hehe :)

Your hair? Blonde-ish

Your mother? Lisa - she lives in Texas, this bothers me. I miss her.

Your father? Allan - lives in California - talked to him yesterday, he was stressed and busy.

Your favorite thing? The ocean

Your dream last night? Hmmm...I know I remembered right when I woke up, but darned if I can remember it now.

Your favorite drink? When I'm allowed to drink alcohol, it's a margarita on the rocks with salt. Non-alcoholic is probably iced tea, or water.

Your dream/goal? Stay home with my kiddos more, run a successful business, and then end hunger and child abuse.

What room are you in? My office.

Your hobby? Hmmm...I don't really have a 'real' one - but the activity I'm finding I spend the most money on currently is organizing my house - so I guess my hobby is technically 'organizing stuff'. Kinda boring huh?

Your fear? Argh...I hate talking about this one, because it makes me feel sick to my stomach - but honestly, my biggest fear is one of my children passing before me.

Where do you want to be in 6 years? HeHe...this was kinda funny to me, because on most interviews it's 5 or 10 years, but this one is 6. Hmmm...6 years, I will be almost 36 - I will be preparing to send my first child off to college - and all the rest of my kiddos will be in school as well - maybe I'll be able to find an actual hobby by then. :) But on the serious side...I'm hoping my business will be doing extremely well, that we'll finally own a house, that we'll be able to take 2-week vacations, that we'll be able to contribute significantly to our community's needs, and uh...that I'll have the body of a supermodel (had to throw one superficial thing in there!)

Where were you last night? Home, then AWANA, then home again

Something that you aren't? A quick thinker on my feet - I always think of the best things to say about a day or so later

Muffins? Blueberry please

Wish List Item? A craft room - you know, for all the hobbies I do.

Last thing you did? Put a piece of a King Size Hershey's Cookies n Creme bar in my mouth

What are you wearing? A maternity shirt, some jeans, and flip flops

TV? Ummm...what about it? I watch it - my new show is 'Medium' now that its on Lifetime every night. I think I've just about watched every re-run of 'NCIS' that they've shown, so I'm over that show for now.

Your pets? 2 inside cats, and 6 outside cats

Friends? A few really good ones, and a handful more of friendships I'm developing into good ones, hopefully :)

Your life? Is busy, but it's awesome

Your mood? Happy

Missing someone? Yep -my momma, my BFF (but she's coming back in a few months), my daddy

Drinking? Water

Smoking? Nope

Your Car? 2004 Ford Expedition

Something you're not wearing? Socks

Your favorite store? Target

Your favorite color? Blue

When is the last time you cried? Yesterday, when I read Mama Mary's post

Where do you go to over and over? Work, home and Target

Favorite place to eat? Ajo Al's, Kona Grill, Pei Wei

Place I'd Like to be right now? The ocean

Okay - your turn!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

PrompTuesday #75 - Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda

Wow, it's been a long time since I've participated in a PrompTuesday, but I I couldn't pass this one up.

It was inspired by Mary over at the Mama Mary Show, and brought to you by Deb at San Diego Momma.

Here's the Prompt:

“Let’s say I am casting for a new reality tv show/web series called “Woulda, Shoulda, Coulda.” Either write or webcam your story about who you are, what you do now, and what your “woulda, coulda, shoulda” story is as your audition piece–you can post it as a comment, send it to me via email, or post it on your own blog/facebook page. And then come up with a scenario we could “play out” on the show — for example, Melanie said she would be a big time event planner caterer, so maybe her segment is partnering with Oprah’s party planner/caterer team Debi Lilly and Colin Cowie to plan a ginormous event that is her creation from start to finish.”

Okay - so here goes - I tend to be long-winded, but I'll try and make this as interesting and concise as possible. ;)

Growing up, I had a lot of dreams - doctor, lawyer, Indian Chief (okay, just kidding, that was a game we played in school). But seriously, I think my first one was to be a doctor, but that was pretty short-lived and didn't make it past my 7th or 8th birthday. Then, around 10 or 11 years old, I discovered that I really liked to write, so I thought I would be an author. This thought stuck around, and I spent a lot of time writing all throughout school, whether it was poems, stories, or journals. I had some of my poems published in our school newspaper, and my English teachers were pleased with a lot of my stories. But, I just never took it much farther than that.

Then...there was dancing...I ate, breathed, slept, drank, dreamed, about dance from the time I was 8 years old until I graduated high school. I took class after class, ballet, jazz, tap, modern, technique, African...all of it. I performed with my dance studio at state fairs, local fairs, competitions, the State Capitol...and then when I made dance company at my school, I performed at football and basketball games, took workshops at ASU and performed in spring concerts where I choreographed many of the dances I performed in. My junior year in high school, we moved from Arizona, where I had spent my 4th through 10th grade years, to Las Vegas, NV. I auditioned for a Performing Arts high school, and was accepted into their dance program. This could have been my "big break", except for the fact that I was so pissed off at my grandparents for moving me during my upper-classmen years to another state, I pretty much looked for ways to rebel. About half way through my first year there, I pitched a fit (very mature of me, I know), and demanded that I be allowed to drop out of that school and go to my 'home school' which was the high school I would have been zoned for in the area we lived. The performing arts school was in downtown Vegas, about 40 minutes away from my house, and none of my friends lived close to me (this was a lie - I had several friends that lived on my side of town, I was just being a spoiled brat). And so...I dropped out of the performing arts school, proceeded to go to my local high school, made all the WRONG friends, ditched school just about every day, failed my English class, and just barely passed in all of my other classes - this was NOT like me, as I was a straight 'A' student. I moved back to Arizona, and lived with my mom and her boyfriend my senior pregnant at the end of the year, graduated, had my baby in October that year and started life in the working world. The end.

Just kidding. ;) OK - so, I had a little thread of a dream that was interwoven through all of that. It was singing. I took choir for the first time in 7th grade, and my choir director built me up to think that I could be really good. That year, we were going to perform the "Pirates of Penzance" in front of the entire school. I was selected just for a back-up role, and I was fine with that. Then, the girl who had been chosen for the lead female role, had to back out. I was chosen to fill her place. Her songs were way out of my vocal range at that time - I tried to get the choir director to lower them - he said "No". And my voice cracked extremely bad, in front of the ENTIRE school, and parents, and God and everybody. I was crushed, broken and embarrassed. From that day on, I didn't sing in front of anyone on my own until I was 24 years old. I had performed in a couple community theatre plays, but my role was more of dancing than singing - and any singing I did was 'ensemble', no solos. I used to just buy CDs, sit in my room, and sing along with them - or sing in my car - or the shower. Finally, at age 24, I had 3 children, was a single mom - and I decided, "It's now or never." If I don't do something with this, I never will.

I started looking around for bands that were looking for a singer, found one, auditioned, and then nothing ever came of it. One night, I decided to go to karaoke night at a local bar, and invited my grandma to come with me. She had no idea I could sing - and she raised me for 18 years. hehe. After my song, a guy came up to me and said he knew a guy named Bobby that owned a restaurant in Scottsdale where they did karaoke, but before they opened up the mic to everyone that signed up, they did a "showcase" which was pretty much a group of regulars at karaoke, that Bobby liked to have come up and do a song or two. I started going to Bobby's restaurant for karaoke on Saturday nights while my mom watched the kids. Pretty soon I was doing the showcase, and then I got asked to do the "Dinner Show" - which was from 7-8pm, with a gal named Sandie. So, it was just Sandie and I, trading off songs, for an entire hour. I was SO nervous! But Sandie became one of my best girlfriends in the process! :) We did the dinner show for awhile, then we decided to see if we could get our own band going - we did, but it was short-lived.

Then, I found a guy that was looking for someone to record a song that he wrote. So, I recorded it...and nothing ever came of that either. What is it with the music industry? hehe ;) BUT - that song did get me accepted to the Colgate Country Showdown in Prescott. That was a GREAT experience, we actually got to sing up on a big stage in the community college amphitheater. After that, I joined the band that I had auditioned for a couple years prior (the one where nothing came of it at first?? yeah, that one). We actually did quite a few performances - we did the grand opening of a Toyota dealership, a silent auction at a big church, and then we got our first gig at a country bar. This was the beginning of the end for me - as I had met my hubby by this time (we weren't married yet though) - he wasn't too keen on the idea of his future wife singing in bars until 3am. At first I thought he was being stupid, and controlling - but then I saw it from his perspective - you know, a mom of 3 kids, in a bar with a bunch of drunks until the wee hours. So, I wasn't with the band much longer after that. My very latest singing venture was singing with our church band during the 'contemporary' service at 10:30. That was a LOT of fun - and I felt like I was singing for the right reasons and in the right type of place. Then...I got pregnant (AGAIN), and started not feeling so good in the AM - so I had to step down from the church band for a little while. And here we are...present day, with 4 kids and one on the way.

I don't think I would ever want to be a "famous" singer - because I think about all the time I'd have to be away from my family if I were to ever 'hit it big'. But, my husband plays guitar, and we've talked about doing open mics or coffee house type gigs locally, and that would be a lot of fun. But sometimes I just wonder what I "woulda, coulda, shoulda' done if my voice wouldn't have cracked in the 7th grade. :)

Here's a link to the one song I recorded, in the living room of a guy named Adam Matthews' with his recording equipment. Adam wrote this song, and I'm pretty sure he had it copyrighted, I just don't know what the number is. (basically, don't steal the song, k?) And be kind if you listen to it. ;)

For This I Give You