7 delights from the day

  • Accepting a pretty picture lovingly drawn by Evie: birds in the sky, flowers growing in the grass, and a shirt hung (?) to dry.
  • Seeing Sarah and her little friend, Ella, for a few minutes this morning.
  • Waking Eloise from her nap: through her sleepy smile, the first thing she said was, "My favorite color is yellow. I like that one."
  • Watching Mr. B hold and adore Audrey after dinner.
  • Receiving a funny, made-me-laugh phone call from Molly.
  • Cuddling my freshly-bathed, freshly-nursed baby until she fell asleep.
  • Remembering--and eating--the sugar cookies I hid in the cupboard last night. Yum.


It's great being a superhero

Today, my grandma said to Evie, "There's nothing your mother cannot do!" (This was after Evie came in flaunting the scrappy little pigtails I'd just put in her hair.)
Evie's immediate reply? "Yes there is. She can't get to heaven by herself, and she can't touch the ceiling without a ladder."
Amen and amen.


A lil' bit of sunshine

Winter is starting to wear on me. We were out and about today, and by the time we got home, the van, our coats and pants, and the kitchen floor were a salty-muddy mess. I miss the sun. Oh, how I long to be here again: Except not 7 months pregnant. I really do love being pregnant, but waking up to this smile is ever so much better: Actually, it kind of warms me up a bit, too...
(Thanks so much to my sweet friend, Amy, and her husband for the great beach photo! It was my favorite Christmas present this year. And don't you love Eloise's goggles?)


A bellybutton named Ankle

This morning, Evie said she didn't feel well. Great, I thought, didn't we just get over practically an entire month of sickness?!? The following conversation ensued:
Me: How don't you feel good?
Evie: I just don't feel good.
Me: Like what? What feels bad?
Evie: Mmmm...my tubes.
Me: Your tubes?
Evie: Yeah, my tubes. I think my food went down the wrong tube.
Me: Your food? You haven't had breakfast, silly!
Evie: I know. It was my supper. My supper went down my breakfast tube last night. Now I can't eat breakfast, because my supper is in there.
Me: Hmmm...maybe you could try to eat breakfast. Maybe there is room in the tube.
Evie: No, there's not. I think I'm pretty sick now. So I'm going to have to watch movies today.
Our kids don't get to watch movies very often--could you tell? In fact, I remember one night when Evie was three, the stomach flu hit her hard in the middle of the night. I brought her into the bathroom to clean her up, worried that she was going to be traumatized by the experience of waking up to the awful feeling, smell, taste, and sight of vomit. But, nope: she stood in the bathroom smiling, saying excitedly, "Do I get to watch movies? Do I get to eat jello?"! (We don't let them eat sugary treats much, either.) Yep, sickness is a celebration at our house, because we get to watch movies.
Apparently, Evie, at the age of five, already knows how to fake sickness. Fortunately, when I told her there would be no movies today regardless of her "tube" situation, her condition rapidly improved, and she proceeded to eat two big bowls of oatmeal, two pieces of whole wheat toast, a banana, and a small handful of raisins.
Eloise's tummy/tubes seemed to be just fine, although she did ask if I wanted to see her bellybutton. When I declined, she said, "Look at my bellybutton, Mom! Its name is Ankle." A bellybutton named Ankle. How 'bout that?


A little Truth for Tuesday

I Corinthians 10:31--"Whether, then, you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." While checking my favorite "mommy blogs" today, I stumbled--via a link from another link--across a post from Conversion Diary (which I've never read before, but may have to check out again soon!) and was struck by the following:

I can't tell you how many times I've been engrossed in some great spiritual book, only to be interrupted by some unexpected chaos with the kids. And my immediate reaction is to think, "Would you kids be quiet! I'm trying to seek God's will here!" sighing that if only I wasn't so bogged down with my household responsibilities that I could really start getting in tune with God. If only I didn't have to change this diaper and deal with that temper tantrum and clear all those dishes off the table I could get closer to finding out what it is that God wills for me!

It's been quite stunning, then, for me to realize that changing that diaper and dealing with the temper tantrum and clearing those dishes are God's will. These are the situations that God puts in front of me every day. If I see them through my eyes alone, holding out for God to reveal to me that "his" will is all about me writing that bestselling book or the lottery win (that just so happen to be big fantasies of mine), I grumble through the mundane tasks of my day. And when I do this, when I apathetically plop a dish into the sink or huff and puff about having to sweep the kitchen floor for the second time today, I am essentially saying, "I will not serve." I'm refusing to accept that these humdrum tasks just might be the answers to all my questions about what God wants me to do.

But to see all these diapers and temper tantrums and dishes through God's eyes, to humbly go about my day executing each task with love, appreciating every moment and every little thing around me as a precious gift, is to know and serve God, to do his will. I don't need to analyze it beyond that. I have my answer.

Wow. I think I needed that reminder. Today. Probably yesterday. That post had a link to another of her posts where she quotes St. Escriva:
Conquer yourself each day from the very first moment, getting up on the dot, at a set time, without granting a single minute to laziness. If with the help of God, you conquer yourself in the moment, you have accomplished a great deal for the rest of the day. It's so discouraging to find yourself beaten in the first skirmish.
I know absolutely nothing about St. Escriva, but it seems St. Escriva knew me and presented this admonition specifically for me! My moms' group is going through Cindy Dagnan's book, Who Got Peanut Butter on My Daily Planner?, and I was particularly convicted by our discussion of chapter 2: "Kryptonite and the Supermom." I am so very often "beaten in the first skirmish." But I want to win! I want to be Supermom, but I am overcome by the kryptonite of my to-do list. Actually, not so much my to-do list, as my snooze button. If I got up "on the dot, at a set time, without granting a single minute to laziness," I could joyfully offer up my entire day to God, and begin to take care of so many things on that to-do list before my girls were even awake. Then, I could spend my precious minutes with them as their mommy, without being distracted by everything else that has to get done. Instead, I often lay in bed in the morning until the last possible minute. Of course, I have a whole barrage of excuses, the main one being I stay up way too late. And I often stay up way too late because Mr. B is up working, and I like to think that sitting next to him while he works somehow constitutes spending time with him. Silly, eh? If you're reading this, will you pray for me? Please pray that I will go to bed earlier, so I can get up"on the dot" and tackle each day this way? And, while you are at it, please also pray that I will remember that the tasks I encounter throughout the day are my opportunities to serve, they are God's will for me, and that I might do them "all to the glory of God." I would feel privileged to pray the same for you, too; simply leave me a comment! Here's I Corinthians 10:31 one more time, my own version: "Whether, then, you eat or drink, wash lights or darks, scrub toilets or floors, work puzzles or read books, tickle tummies or soothe tears, wipe bottoms or wash hands, do all to the glory of God."


Not Me! Monday

One big reason why I've contemplated starting a blog over the past several months is MckMama's Not Me! Monday blog carnival: I've been aching to play along, and now I can! Stay tuned for a list of things I definitely did not do this week (and certainly would never admit to doing them, even if I did do them, which, of course, I didn't...). When you're done reading, hop on over to MckMama's site to see what she and a whole lot of others didn't do this week. If you like, you can even play along!
  1. When Mr. B was out of town this week, I did not neglect to put away the five loads of laundry I'd washed, dried, and folded on my bed before the girls went to sleep for the night. I did not move the piles of clean clothes to his side of the bed, crawl in on my side, and sleep next to them all night long. That would have been so lazy, and I would never have done it!
  2. Speaking of lazy, it would have been very lazy--not to mention disgusting--to leave a dead goldfish floating at the top of the little plastic portable aquarium for several days, while the remaining two fish continued to swim around their deceased friend. I would not have waited until the water was totally murky and stinky before flushing said goldfish.
  3. If, by some small chance, number two above had actually happened, I never would have forgotten to de-chlorinate the clean tap water I used to refill the aquarium after cleaning it out, so the remaining two goldfish did not die within an hour of their return home. And, of course, I did not leave the two of them floating at the top of the aquarium for another couple of days, waiting for Mr. B to return from his trip and take care of them.
  4. I did not lose my cell phone this week. I did not forget it on the bike at the gym. I don't think you're even supposed to have cell phones in the fitness center, so I would never even think about having it in there with me, and I certainly would never be irresponsible enough to leave it there.
  5. My eyes did not well with tears when Mr. B had to replace my awesome red slider phone with the most basic cell phone available. It's a phone: I would not get close to crying about it.
  6. I did not find it ironic that Mr. B's work upgraded him to a Blackberry this week, just one day before I was required to downgrade to a boring, basic phone. I do not despise the Blackberry already, because it will not provide one more way for Mr. B to be connected to his job at all times.
  7. Finally, in reference to number 6, I am sure Mr. B did not use his Blackberry to check his email while going to the bathroom. He would never do that, and I would never be married to a silly someone who would. [I so love that guy...]

How about you? What didn't you do this week???

UPDATE: I did not accidentally link to last week's Not Me! Monday post...but if I did, then this week's post (February 2) would be here.


Guess who

Guess who is five months old today?
Guess who is sleeping in a big crib for the first time tonight? Guess who has her Mommy and Daddy wrapped around her little finger? Guess who is the cutest ever?


Don't touch my Diet Coke...

The other day, when Evie spent some time at her Aunt Sisi's house, Eloise had the rare opportunity to play whatever she wanted. She decided to be a schoolteacher for much of the morning. Apparently, part of playing schoolteacher means wearing a pink button that says "It's a Girl" from the hospital where my niece was born...you know, ya gotta accessorize... Anyway, I digress. A little while into her school day, Eloise came to the laundry room to inform me that Thomas and Joanie--my "children"--had to come home because they had touched her Diet Coke. The horror! She watched with smug satisfaction as I scolded both Thomas and Joanie for their soft drink handling offense. Later, both children were invited back to the classroom, although they were forced to stand next to the easel for the remainder of the day. Here is the little schoolteacher. At least her head would have been protected if Thomas or Joanie had decided to, say, throw the Diet Coke at her. Oh, and the Diet Coke was really a flip-straw bottle of water. Now that I've figured out the insert-an-image thing, here's one of Audrey and the new tooth:

The tooth is very new and very small, but it's there. Believe me. She chomped down while eating earlier. It's also very sharp.


First Blog, First Post, First Tooth

Well, here we go! I've tossed around the idea of starting a blog long enough, and I'm jumping in with both feet...er, hands. I'm not particularly witty or insightful, but a blog seems like a good place to jot down some glimpses of our little family. If people want to share them with us, great; otherwise, at least I can keep track for myself. That said, Audrey cut her first tooth today! I'm not sure what possessed me to even check her little gums, as I hadn't even thought she was going through any true teething, but there it is: a tiny, sharp white line in her bottom gum. She seemed genuinely proud of her latest achievement, and her sisters and I cheered as she laughed with her big, wide-open, not-so-toothless-anymore smile. In addition to her latest advances in dental development (??), she's rolling from tummy to back like a pro and I think she'll be sitting independently in no time. Would it be too cliche to say they grow up too quickly?