Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Cha Cha Cha Changes!

So I mentioned a post or two ago that there are some "exciting changes" coming to our family. I guess I am ready to post about those changes now that most of our immediate family & close friends know now.

We are moving...into Owen's parents house!

Call us ambitions, crazy, lucky, blessed, stupid, brave or whatever, this is the decision we've made after a lot of prayer and talking about our future. Don't you want to know how all this came about? Oh good! I'm glad you're interested.

As most of you know, Owen's dad Tom has been working for Sundt for the past several years. Since the economy has turned, there isn't a lot of local work, however Sundt has a contract with our Military to do renovations on bases etc. Tom and Joy have been in El Paso and in San Antonio for the past 2+ years. We all thought they'd be sent home after their last stay in San Antonio but God had other plans! They're being moved to North Carolina.
When I found out, selfishly I was frustrated...I LOVE having Joy around. She's the "glue" that holds our family together. She's the one who organizes family get togethers, dinners, holidays etc. Oh yea, and my kids absolutely adore her and ask daily if we can go to "grammas" house. Not to mention all the worry-free babysitting and "R&R" for me. And of course there are always "adventures with papa". Never a dull moment for the kids when the grandparents are around. I was bummed that our "short season apart" was becoming a longer and longer season.
I am not sure how it came about originally, a passing comment, a conversation or a joke, but it was said that we should move into Tom and Joy's house since it was so big and only Uncle Isaac was living there. Well, actually he more or less just sleeps there!

Owen and I talked about it...kind of like "wouldn't that be so funny if ...?" and then we kept talking about it and kept praying about it and it dawned on us that this was a good idea! We are not planning to sell our place right now, but rather rent it. We've been working out the details, cleaning out both houses, picking out paint colors, deciding where things can go and lots of other nitty gritty moving details.

Do you want to hear all of the pros of moving into Tom and Joys? Oh good. Me too!
  • A new adventure for our family where we get to learn to lean on each other, both our immediate family and extended.
  • Space--this home is just short of 3x's bigger than our current home, although we'll be primarily occupying the basement, we have access to all the common areas.
  • When the grandparents are in town we have the rare opportunity to spend time with them. Our kids are going to create special memories while living there.
  • In the same vein, living with Uncle Isaac...need I say more?
  • Saving money
  • Saving money
  • Saving money
  • Most importantly though we really feel like this is where the Lord is leading us for the next 24 months or so. There is no better place to be than smack dab in the middle of the Lords will!
The primary reason that we even began considering this is that it's been our dream to expand our current home...and each year the amount of time it was going to take us to save for the renovation kept getting slightly farther than we were comfortable with. Let's remember, we have 5 people living in 980 square feet (1000 if you consider the un-air conditioned laundry room!). But we LOVE our house and our neighborhood so at this point we feel lead to keep the house and save to remodel. Living at the in-laws and renting our home will cut our time in half.

We are grateful beyond words to Tom and Joy for letting us take this leap of faith! We are aware that this new adventure does not come without challenges. We (let's be honest, me) have talked about the difficulties and sacrifices that will come with this blessing. We ask that YOU, our family and friends would join with us in praying that this transition and season would be smooth and most importantly God honoring!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Fun Stuff

You lookin' at me?
Just a few questions. What in the world is that? Why are these things crawling around in the dirt in my backyard. Why did God make these frightful creatures. Perhaps most important though, Which one of my children is holding this grotesque bugs? Do you think it is my girlie girl who insists on wearing "pink, pink and pink" as she points to her pink shirt, her pink skirt and her pink shoes. Is it my girl who recently gave herself a haircut with bangs to be "just like mommy"?
Or is it my fierce boy who rarely has a free hand due to always holding a car in it.Is it my boy who runs around the house letting his biggest "lions roar" rip with his sharp claws stretched out?
Judah wouldn't really have much to do with this strange creature, but Clara couldn't get enough of it. She comes running inside the house to get me and show me "this really awesome stinky bug!".
Is it just me or does Clara look like she's contemplating where she can put that devilish bug on her squeamish brother?

She's braver than I in so many ways.
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Sitting up!

Although you can hardly tell, Wesley is sitting up in this picture! He's starting to change so fast. I can hardly stand it. He's looking pretty proud of his new "tripod" sit.
All I have to say is you have to LOVE the blue eyes. That's practically all you can see in this picture. No question that these three are siblings.

Judah's face is so appropriate for this. He was practically captured and kept in this little box by his older sister. She was playing "house" and of course she was the boss mommy.

I think they had fun with this big box (mostly) that Owen brought home from work. It was so big that I could almost not get it back outside when I was done with it taking up so much precious space.
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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Bye Bye Facebook...a confession

I recently said goodbye to Facebook. Gasp, sneer, boo or cheer. It's the truth and I have a lot of different reasons for it.

You're going to think I am crazy...if you don't already! I was on Facebook a few weeks back and I was updating my information. It asked me to put in my profession, and of course there was not a little drop down menu listing "stay at home mom". So I put I worked at "Clara, Judah & Wesley". Sounds like a pretty nice firm huh? That moment, and many moments afterwards I began to think about my role as a mom. I began to wonder if my role could be considered a profession. Don't get ahead of me--this is so not a post about equal rights, the value of working or stay at home moms or anything like that.

As I began to think about being "employed" by/for my children my perspective began to change a little bit. I started to see things, little habits and behaviors that I wrote off as permissible simply because I am not getting a pay check. For example...

  • When a late night sneaks into the early morning and I am too tired to get up, I will let my kids go in the family room unsupervised and play until someone starts crying.
  • When I feel overwhelmed with all the tasks at hand I will take short cuts and not do things the right way--creating more work for me & Owen later in the day.
  • I blatantly choose not to do parts of my job on a regular basis. (i.e. laundry, sweeping, mopping, folding clothes, making the bed, menu planning, disciplining, oh the list can go on and on!)
  • When I am tired in the middle of the day no matter how much work there is to be done, I take a nap.
  • Waste company time searching the internet, namely Facebook.
We all know that if I was "professionally " employed, any of the above behaviors would lead to termination. No one can come perpetually late to work, perform half hearted tasks, ignore work that clearly needs to get done OR sleep on the job and still expect to be employed. While all of those things are a part of reality--sometimes children are too demanding to get a whole weeks worth of laundry done in 1 afternoon. Sometimes it's OK to pile dishes in the sink rather than load them in the dishwasher right away. A nap is often times a necessity after a night caring for a sick child or a newborn.

What I have been realizing though is those things were becoming the norm, not the exception. I was choosing on a regular basis to ignore my "job". Let me put it another way. I was choosing on a regular basis to ignore my kids, their needs, their minds, their need for discipline, redirection and spiritual development. I was ignoring my need for Spiritual development too...I was ignoring the WORD--even though it was sitting right next to the computer. If my boss had been watching me in any other place of employment, I know I'd get fired. So what's a job lost? There's no way I can measure or estimate the time I've lost with my kids & spouse while "Facebooking". But I know that being sensitive to the Holy Spirit's prompting will not be done in vain. Sure I miss the FB and I miss seeing funny updates or a juicy bit of gossip--what I don't miss? My kids pulling at me while I am sitting at the computer. My kids asking me for the millionth time to meet a need that I've ignored or disengaging from moments that I can never get back.

I am not saying that Facebook is bad. I am not saying that you are bad for using Facebook. What I hope you hear through this post is that there are distractions, excuses and lies that keep us from doing and being the best that we can be in our lives. Especially for us mamas--who is there to hold us accountable for those lax moments? I don't think that my 3 year old is going to report to her daddy that I spent "X" amount of hours playing with her, and "X" amount of hours playing on the computer. It's only by Gods grace that I heard a prompting from the Holy Spirit that my "innocent distraction" was becoming something that was jeopardizing the quality of several areas of my life. What is jeopardizing you? For me, at this time in life that major distraction has been Facebook. So bye bye Facebook.

Proverbs 31: 10-31
A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls... She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks...she opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet....Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. he speaks with wisdom and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: "Many women do noble things but you surpass them all". Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting;but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her the rewards she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate."

Disclaimer: this post and almost all other posts are done during "nap time" or after bed time to keep me on track of not tuning out from my kids!

Monday, July 4, 2011

What a weekend.

What have we been up to this weekend? Oh, a lot! Things started bright and early on Friday morning with snuggles from the three little ones.
A visit from Auntie Rachael. Have I mentioned that she's expecting in December? Yippee for babes. Rachael looks so happy because she's dropping off her two kiddos at my house for the whole day. So yes, I had 5 kids in my house...and actually 4 of them napped at the same time. It was pretty nice.

We got all "berried up" so that we had lots of energy for all of the things that we had to do! As co-leaders of our small group, we hosted a pool & pizza party for our whole group. Thankfully it wasn't at our house. We had a blast using the Eatons pool & backyard. There were about 35 people there. What a neat group of families we have. Such fun.
We also had a great time on Saturday night at a family BBQ with the Maurers. Tom and Joy are in town for a little bit of time. We made it to church on Sunday and also had a short but great visit with My brother's family and our step brother who was able to meet Wesley for the first time.
The big project this weekend was pretty spur of the moment. Owen came home from work on Friday with all the supplies to paint our house. Yes--on the hottest weekend of the year so far. Ha! So the unidentifiable color below--pink-ish tan was the old color and now we have this rich creamy brown called "Toffee Crunch" by Behr. I love it. We also painted our aluminum windows and the frame around it. We have briefly discussed painting and had kind of agreed on a color, but I guess Owen just got an idea in his head...well you know how it is when he gets an idea!
Below is the almost finished product. We have some trim to do and the door as well as the remainder of the trim around windows. Since the house is painted brick we have some touch up to do on the large portions of the house but all in all the hard work is done.
After all the hard work, paint, playing and cleaning up our kiddos were dirty! We had to use a little extra soap to get them all cleaned up!
Lots of fun changes coming up for the Maurer family--NO I AM NOT PREGNANT!--But I'll be updating soon with some exciting news.