"Tell your children of Him, and let your children tell their children, and their children to another generation." Joel 1:3

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A "growing up" makeover

I'd been telling the boys since I was done with daycare that I would redo their room. Tyler and Timmy first had this downstairs room when we moved into the house 5 years ago. At that time, they were 5 & 7 and really loved jungle animals so that became the theme.
I got this great border that made their room look like a jungle. I bought some leopard comforters and painted animals on the wall. And lemmetellya, it was hard to paint over those animals.....I still remember doing them and the time it took.

I loved it, they loved it, they grew up, they got tired of it.
This past Christmas, when Tyler got his own new room....we moved Trae down with Timmy. Since then, there has been this debate going on about what sort of room they wanted. Vikings, Baseball, Hunting.....ah, we don't even hunt.....until finally I took the thing about hunting they liked, the camouflage, and suggested a military theme. I would say Army theme, but that just would not go over well in this Marine loyal home.
First step....peeling off the border. My LEAST favorite thing to do in the whole world.

Then, we moved their bunk beds into a new spot. We didn't think they would fit at first, but Tim and Trae had already measured it cuz it was their idea. This new spot makes their desk inaccessible....except for collecting stuff....for doing homework.......but they never used it for that anyway.

Actually, not only did it fit....it fit like it was made to go there. Not an inch to spare. This gave their tiny room a ton more space.

The walls are an Army......er, I mean, military....green on the bottom and a tan on top.

Got some things hung that I found on Amazon...

Including these stickers and a camo blanket that I sort of fashioned into a valence.

At the end of it all, what matters most is if the boys like it, and they do. They love their new, more grown up room. It was like a new chapter....going from jungle animals to the military. **Sigh** Next thing I know they'll be putting up posters of girls in bikinis.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sunday Snapshot: Brothers

With each pregnancy and birth of one of our boys, I was overjoyed at the thought of all these brothers growing up together.

I mean, how many boys can grow up with their very own, built-in, basketball team.

We always had our girl name picked out.....just in case. But deep down, I think I knew that I was meant to be the mom of a lot of boys.

They are protective of me, in a way that only a boy can be with his mom....even now, as young as they are. That special bond between a mom and her son is undeniable.

By the time I was due with our 5th, I thought it funny that some were still anxious to see what it was going to be. Had they not figured it out by then?

God obviously had a big plan for us. A plan that was far beyond anything we ever imagined 15 years ago....

....entrusting us with His children. Knowing that we could bring them up to be Godly men.

What an honor, when you look at it that way. He trusted us with the lives and souls of His boys.

It is an honor I feel blessed to have been given. I will do my best every day to make Him proud and reassured in His decision.

How could I not.....I mean, just look at those faces.

Head over here to see more Sunday Snapshots....
Ni Hao Y'all

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Never thought of it that way

Two things cracked me up today, compliments of my youngest and oldest children.
I was listening to the radio this morning and Tanner heard them talk about the President. He said, "Mom, the President is a real person" (I suppose this meant as apposed to some super hero or fictional character).
"Yep", I said..."do you know his name?"
"Um, George Washington?"
"No...but that was a good guess, he was our very first President"
"Ummm, George Bush?"
"Nope, but he was our last President."
"Spongebob Squarepants?"

Tonight, after work, I had to go to church to pick up the boys cuz Jay was there with them for a practice with the band. I started to get the boys rounded up to go and Tyler was the first to listen. He looked at me and said, "I'm ready mom....I'm your favorite, right?" He says this often as he lays his head on my shoulder batting his eyes at me and trying not to laugh. I said, "Nice try, but guess what...I don't have any favorites, I love you all the same.....even when your brothers aren't listening to me."
Then Tyler says, "So, basically, our family is like a communist country. We all get the same treatment no matter what and everyone is always equal..even if they don't pull their weight"
Umm....okay, sure. Nice analogy, Tyler. LOL!
Looking back, what I should have said to that was "No, this is a dictatorship....I speak, you act."

Can you tell we talk about politics in our house?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Last night, the boys had their varsity wrestling final four tournament. They played 2 matches to see who would get first place for the season. Since it was a Tues. I had to work, but I had made arrangements to get off early. It started at 5:30 and I knew I could get there by about 6:30 so I figured I'd miss the first round and then make it for the final one. I was right....but what I hadn't anticipated was that I was going to miss Tyler's match of the season. UGH....I hate that so much! As soon as I got there, I could tell they were in between meets and one of the mom's saw me and told me I just missed the best pin of the night. Our team was down by just enough points, with only Tyler and the one older kid left to wrestle, that they both needed to get a pin. Even a win would not have been enough...they had to get them pinned. Tyler was up first and he got his guy down and pinned in the first round. Now, this is the kid who has only won 2 matches all season....but seems when his team needed him, he really came through. The other boy got a pin also so the win put us in the match for first place. When I got into the gym, Jason saw me and just gave me this look like he was going to tell me something exciting....I said, I already know....I missed it. He said he was yelling so loud from the stands that he about lost his voice. I wish I could say that I remembered to give Jay the camera so he could record the match...but I had forgotten...of course. Well...I did make it for the start of the next round and we didn't win that one, it was close though. So the boys finished out in second place.
The JV plays next week on Friday so I'll be at that one and then they have the individual tournament next Saturday. I'll be at most of that also....I'm taking time off for it. I really hate missing their games. One of these days, It will be nice to not have to work nights or at least start earlier and get off by 6pm or something.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A child's effort

Jason and I (thanks to my parents who were this way) have always put more weight on our kids' effort than their grades. Grades alone don't tell us what kind of student one is and they certainly don't tell us the sort of kid they are. If one of the boys gets a C and he worked hard to get that C, then we're proud of him. If another got a C and it was because he didn't finish his homework or slacked off on his studies, then that's a problem. We just want them to apply themselves and then do their very best.
Last week, Timmy came home with his report card and had an F in science. We knew it was coming cuz the teacher had sent something home the week prior letting us know. Tim is our boy who has to work the hardest in school. It just doesn't come easy to him...never has and probably never will. He has to work twice as hard as Tyler to get half the grade. So, here's the thing with this F. Because he got a grade lower than a C-, he is suspended from wrestling for 2 weeks. This really sucks. Plain and simple. We are always pretty supportive of the school and it's policies, but this time I'm a little annoyed. I just feel like they need to take into account the student as a whole, not just that letter on his report card. He has no missed homework, he got a B for effort, and he's a good kid...we have no behavior problems with him. He struggles with tests. It's his test grades that have contributed to the F. So, because he's a student who has a hard time testing (as a lot of them do) but he is doing his best, he gets wrestling taken away....something that he is good at and really enjoys. Last night we found out that the final four playoffs are on Tues. He is suspended until next Monday so he'll miss his teams playoffs. Am I the only one who thinks that just sucks!? In fact, the team was 5-0 going into last week and they lost both matches they had on Tues. and Thur. because Timmy and another boy in Timmy's same position, had to give up forfeits in their weight class. So, they ended the season in second place with 5-2. He cried so hard last night about missing the playoffs. I know I'm the mom so I'm biased, but I swear if this was about him not doing his homework or having behavior issues or anything else, I would be totally supportive of the school's decision...I just think this falls into the 'not fair' category. Let's take away the one thing where the kid has some confidence and does well and embarrass him because everyone knows why he's sitting out. He just didn't need this. He's been having such a tough time at school with those couple kids I've talked about....now this. I'm taking my son's side on this one. I'm considering going to the school tomorrow and talking to the asst. principal. Not saying it will change anything...but I think it's important to make my thoughts known. Someone's gotta put another perspective out there for them to think about.....why not me?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

We're never too small

God is such a part of my life and yet, I admit with regret, I don't make Him enough of my everyday life. I sometimes think that, too often, I talk to Him when I'm down or hurting or needing something. I pray for my kids and for their safety and health, but even that gets forgotten as heads are spinning and mittens are flying in a rush to get them out to the school bus every morning. I think it and I'll say a quick "God Bless You" as they rush away, then close the door, turn around, and not think about it again. Why is it that I don't have....make....the time like I should for Him and yet, if I were to call on Him, he would not be too busy for me? When I put it that way, it seems like a bad one-sided relationship. And, let's face it, one-sided relationships don't work....ever.
At church on Sunday, I was praying as we all do in church. I pray a lot for the things that weigh on my heart. I pray that I will be a better wife and mother. I pray for continued health of my family. And I am always thankful for everything I have. This Sunday, though, I didn't pray for anything I 'needed'. I was only thankful for my blessings....and I started to speak them to Him. It's easy to give a blanket 'thank you for all my blessings and family' prayer, but specifics really started to easily come to my mind and the more I listed them, the more grateful I was. I began to say these statements, one after another, in my head. As I did, the vision of a person I know appeared in my mind, a different person for every heartache. Someone that, in fact, IS going through these things. So my prayer of gratitude became, at the same time, my prayer for each one of my friends/family members that are suffering in some way or another.

Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of grief and loss.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of loneliness.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of infertility.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of addiction.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of poverty.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of disease.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of joblessness.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of divorce.
Thank you, Lord, that we don't suffer the heartache of being a non-believer.

It's hard to complain about anything when you can pray all these things. We live a truly blessed life and I am so grateful.
For my friends and family that do suffer these heartaches, God always has a plan for us. He knows the ache of our heart and hears our every cry. His plan may not be ours.....but it is far greater. I promise you, He is with you in your pain. He doesn't just hear you, He cries with you. He just asks patience as His plan unfolds.
Listen here for His promise.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

This and That

Pretty much been our typical week around here. Last night we let Trae have a couple friends sleep over for his birthday. While we were here doing that, Jason was with Mike playing poker at a friends house and Tyler was babysitting his kids. He was so excited to be asked. He did a good job having cleaned up the house and even changing Josh's diaper. I was really proud of him and he was very happy about what he got paid. Mindy paid him as well cuz he was watching Kaylee too....so double duty his first time out. He's getting so big, I can't believe it. I'm not old enough to have a son that is old enough to babysit.

Tomorrow morning, I'm getting our taxes done. I'm anxious to be done with them and see what kind of refund we'll be getting. Jason claims zero all year so they take a lot out of his checks to off-set my being self-employed. Between our deductions and child credits we usually get enough to put a good chunk down on the kids tuition for the upcoming fall. We've done that for years now. I always envy the people who use their return for fun spending....a trip, new furniture, a new TV....but then, I don't really. We make our decision to send them to Catholic school and I wouldn't change that for anything, so instead I look at it as a great blessing that we can use this money to help with that. Besides, I'm thinking we need to take advantage of it while we can this year......looks like our Pres., who wasn't gonna raise taxes on the middle class (no one actually believed that, did they) is just gonna take away our child tax credit instead. Oh, and is also trying to make our charitable donations not deductible anymore. Hmmm...call me crazy, but isn't that just the same as raising? Seems like semantics to me.....but, I digress, this is not a political blog. Just needed a teeny, weeny vent 'bout that. Carry on.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Happy Birthday, Trae-Dogg!

It started with the traditional birthday pancake. I have done this for years on the kids' birthdays. They really love it.

My little middle buddy turned 9 yesterday. I can't believe it, how does this happen so fast. I remember so well when he was born with all that hair. We celebrated mostly on Sunday because between school and a wrestling meet out in Eagan, we weren't going to have much of a chance on Monday. We had cheeseburger croissants cuz that's what he picked for his birthday dinner. The others were pretty happy with his choice, that meal goes over very well among the whole family. Then we did gifts and cake and ice cream. We got him this movie projector thing that you hook up to your DVD player and it projects the movie onto the wall in a huge display. He also got a spark scooter that he's been wanting for a while now, so he was real excited about that.
During dessert time, Jason thought it would be good idea to start spraying Redi Whip on the boys. Before I knew it, they were taking off their shirts and he was making designs on their chests with it. Good Lord, if you ever wondered how sticky Redi Whip can get....douse your kids in it and let it dry. I tried to stay out of it (Lord only knows what design Jay would have tried making on MY chest) but then the boys starting coming up to me and hugging me....all full of the stuff. Needless to say, by the time it was over we all needed baths. Oh well, it was fun.
After dinner we had to try out his one gift. We all got our sleeping bags and pillows and made a bed in the living room and projected a movie onto the wall....it was like 7 x 5 feet...it was actually pretty cool. We had some popcorn and it felt like we were in a real theater. The boys stayed there and slept the night.