Wednesday, March 31

A Break to Celebrate Spring

Yesterday was my last working day. That meant that today was supposed to be the start of my spring break.

However today, I chaperoned five first grade boys through an art museum. Rather than discuss what that was like, lets just say that my spring BREAK did not start today until 3pm.

I'm looking forward to great weather and activities with my boys. We're going to visit some family and spend time catching up with old friends I hope!!

Sunday, March 28

Make New Friends...

As I spent the night chatting with a friend, I was thinking about the old girl scout song;

Make new friends,
But keep the old.
One is silver,
and the other gold.

The last year has been rough on my friendships. It's hard to even stay in contact with some of my best friends when I'm working so much. My schedule isn't the same as theirs anymore and when the boys finally get in bed, I have more work to be done.

My mom and I used to talk several times a day. Now, only a few times a week. Same with my oldest brother, Loren. Our conversations have been drastically cut to once a month or less. It's sad really.

I used to participate in a weekly playgroup for my boys. We had a fabulous group of four friends with all their children who were getting together weekly until this past summer. I miss them. I miss their kids. I miss our tea time and our conversations.

And my besterest friend, Tiffany. I am so grateful for our understanding friendship. We both know that just because we aren't able to talk or share or get together, we're still best friends. There is nothing that can change that. But we haven't seen each other in months and we don't get to talk all that often either. Her son, Nate, has been asking about us lately. I hope we get to see each other soon!

But one good thing has come of this year. I've made lots of new friends. For the most part, the staff at Reach has been very warm and accepting. I've made a few friends who are closer than others, and these are the friends that I know I needed in my life. Not because they replace old friends, but because they are new kinds of friends.

I'm very grateful for these people in my life and the interesting dynamic they bring. But, I still miss you, old friends. I miss you a lot.

Saturday, March 27

catching up

First, my friend who needed prayers is on another antibiotic regimine. We'll see if those work. Mom's bloodwork came back ok. Keep praying for the family please.

This week has been so hard. Just so much to get done before spring break. We're trying to clear up some bills and take care of things to start setting aside more money for vacation. And "money talk" is never fun. But it's needed and at least it's out in the open.

School has been great for me...rough for the kids. No one is ready for next week. We only have Monday-Wednesday and spring break starts. I'm sure the kids are going to be BATTY! Should be interesting.

Spring made an appearance last week and then retracted it's entry. The last few days have been chilly and cloudy. But at least I can remember what Spring felt like for a few days.

AND, I'm still making it to the gym at 5:15am five days a week!! GO ME!

Tuesday, March 23

Prayers for a friend

One of my co-workers could use some prayers. She's going to a doctor today to have a bump looked at. She's tried several things to get the bump in the back of her neck to go away, but it's just not happening. I know she's afraid it's cancer. I'm praying it's nothing.

On top of her issues, her mom, who's been in remission for 5 years, received a phone call about her blood work this week. She's not sure what the results are and wasn't looking forward to that appointment either. She saw her doctor on Tuesday.

Please pray for my friend, Renee, please. And her family, too.


All this talk about healing and yet, I'm in pain! Ironic, huh?

Back when I was in high school, I had two surgeries on my left knee for a "rotating patella". Basically, my kneecap rotates to the back of my leg. It's ok now and I haven't had issues with it really...until last week.

I'm desperate to run a 5K this year. It's on my 2010 bucket list. So I'm started running intervals to help build up my body and my stamina. I'm doing well. better than I expected actually. But this morning, I couldn't run more than a minute and half with out pain shooting down my leg. I know it's the pain of being stretched and pushed, but I don't want to be too hard on myself and then put myself out and not be able to complete my 5K.

I'm hoping that in time, the strength and stability will build and I'll be ok. If not, I need the number of a good orthopedic surgeon. Eek!

Healing Wounds

Seems to be a theme in my life lately.

Payton suffered no ill effects from his 6' fall in the middle of the night. He's been more guarded about his sleeping actions, but I've found him at the foot of the bed a few times anyway. Thank goodness we put a new board there to help keep him in.

Maxwell is healing up from both of his falls. The table incident that left him with stitches in his lip has healed well. It's just a pink line now and should be mostly gone by summer I think. His latest injury, the face plant on the sidewalk, is healing as well. His scabs are looking better and well...he's still missing that tooth. Let's just assume it's going to be that way for the better part of the next 4 years. He's a 3-year old hockey player kind of way.

But not all wounds are physical. I have a crazy past and I like it right where it the past. I've recently forgiven a few things in my past. Things that happened to me. Things that people said to me that I carried with me for a long time. Things I did to myself that I needed to forgive myself for.

I found freedom in forgiving. I haven't even told all the people I've forgiven that I've done so. It's not for them. If they wanted forgiven, they would have asked for it. It's for me. I've forgiven them so I can move on. On with my life. My health, better balanced life.

Healing is good. Good for everyone.

Monday, March 22


Yep. That's what I'm doing.

Over the last 18 months, I have been convicted, revamped and made for the better. By friends. By love. By God. Mostly, by God.

I've lived my life many kinds of ways. I like this one the best.

Thursday, March 18

Another Max Event

I was just heading outside to play with the boys when I remembered to grab my camera. But where was that memory card.....oh! There. Grabbed it, put it in the camera and out the door.

"Maxwell! Come back, honey! That's too far."

Here he comes, running back to me, waving his arms wildly and talking something about a stick and a bug. "Hold on, Max. I can't hear you."

As I walked down the sidewalk, I see it all happen in slow motion. He trips. Apparently on his imagination, because there's nothing there. And down he goes. Oh crap! I thought. He can't catch himself. And then it happened. His face hit the sidewalk and he started screaming.

I ran and grabbed him, held his face against my shoulder and walked (calmly) inside. I set him on the counter in the kitchen, grabbed a towel (thank GOODNESS I have red towels) and held it to his face waiting for the blood to slow so I could figure out where the issues were.

Ok. His lip is scratched and swollen. That's expected. His nose too. No biggie, it'll heal in a few days. His chin. Ok. We're fine. Then were is all this blood coming from!! Considering our previous ER visit, I was worried he'd bit through his lip or something again. But no...the blood was inside.

Then I saw it. His front tooth. It was gone. Not broken and part stuck in there, no. Clean out. GONE. Then Payton comes in from outside. It felt like 15 minutes had passed, but I realized it'd only been 3 minutes.

Payton was carrying the tooth. The tooth with the full root still attached. Who knew that baby teeth had roots SOOO long!?!?!

In the end, Maxwell was fine. Minus one tooth, but fine. When he was all cleaned up and the rush of bleeding had stopped we even went outside to play. That's when I took this picture. No the picture I had hoped for to represent our first few days of nice weather.

Dr. Prush just called back (gotta love a dentist who returns calls at 9:30pm) and said there's nothing to do. So we just wait. Another 5 years until his adult tooth comes into that place.

I'm finally coming down off the adrenaline rush and able to calm myself. *sigh* He WILL be the death of me. Crazy Kid. Just another example of how everything with Maxwell is "to the max".

Beautiful Spring

It's been a great week!

I made it to the gym by 5:30am Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday this week. Today was my day off, but I'll be back tomorrow morning! I'm enjoying the soreness and discomfort. I know it means I'm being stretched and pushing myself. I can handle it if it means I'm moving towards my goal.

The weather has been beautiful too! We started a new dismissal procedure at school and I was lucky enough to be appointed an semi-outdoor position. I open up an outside door to let parents in and can I tell you, it's been great this week. I stand at the door, great parents, say my hellos and enjoy the bright sunshine and warmth. Now next week, when it's snowing and raining, I'll be standing in the gym to say my hellos! ;)

Because the weather has been so amazing, my tulips, hyacinth and other mysterious spring plants are coming out of the ground. I have about 2-5 inches of greens up already! My neighbor has daffodils that are almost in bloom!! I already have my sunflower seeds purchased and some from last year that we saved. That doesn't count what's already in the ground. A few more weeks and I'll plant those so they can start right away again this year. I'm hoping to have some BIG ones like last year and then plant another round in June that will be in bloom through September like 2 years ago.

Tomorrow is a half-day of school for us. Payton is going to Matt's parents for the weekend. Matt has military. That leaves Max and me alone for the weekend. I'm not sure what we'll do yet, but I'm bound to find something fun for the boy to do!

Off to enjoy the weather...while it lasts!!

Monday, March 15

I have a date!

I started my new gym this week. I have a date. A sticking date. I will uphold my date. 5:30am 4 days a week. Me and my gym will meet.

Today, I got in some great time on the elliptical and put all the arm machines in the circuit to use. I showered and headed to work. It was a great day, enjoyed dinner with my family and then when the boys were home with Matt, I headed back to the gym for 30 more minutes on the treadmill.

The things I'm MOST excited about:
1) The gym is only 5 minutes from our house. Perfect for me to just run there for 30-45 minutes if I can fit it in.
2) The gym is between the house and school. Great for me to head directly to school when needed.
3) There is free tanning. I'm not much of a tanner, but once in awhile, I think I'll use it. Especially in the winter.
4) I'm going to lose weight. Again. I lost a good amount about 1.5 years ago, but then when my gym membership ended because my Y closed, I didn't go back. I gained back all I had lost.

The things I'm NOT excited about:
1) 5:30am is my only time that I can consistently make it to the gym without worrying about the boys or someone else's schedule.
2) The soreness. I'm already feeling it as I've increased my home exercise over the last week.
3) The bill. $40 a month. It's not necessarily a lot, but I'm in a one year contract. That scares me.
4) 5:30am. I like my sleep.

Think of me. Pray for me.

Thursday, March 11

running on empty

It's been that kind of week. Nothing terribly "wrong" or "hard" or "awful" happened. It's just a lot of little things. I have a pile of things that need done and won't get done by next week when they need to be. My brain hurts from keeping track of what I need to do and what I've done and what I'm currently doing.

Yawn. I'm not sure what would help more; a stiff drink, screaming or a REALLY LONG SLEEP. Oh! And a personal assistant who works for free.

Tuesday, March 9

God has us where he wants us

For a long time, I wondered why we moved to Michigan almost 6 years ago. For awhile, I thought it was the friends. I have made some AMAZING friends and I often wonder if I would be a good mom without them. They have been such a crucial part of my parenting and life.

And while I know I've been blessed by friends, it's just part of the reason we're away from our families. I thought maybe it was the jobs. Matt has a secure job in the ER at the hospital he works in. He loves the field and the adrenaline rush. He enjoys his time with the company and has a lot of opportunities to do teaching he wouldn't be able to do elsewhere. And I've been blessed this year with a great job at Payton's school you all know about too.

But that can't be it entirely it either. This week, while sitting in church, listening to the mission statement I've heard 1,000 times, it hit me. THIS is why we're in Michigan. Because what our church believes is what we believe. What we want for our faith and our walk is what our church is growing people to become.

Love God
Love People
Serve Our World

These are the things we've been teaching our children their whole lives. The things we try to embody ourselves. The morals, values and beliefs I want our boys to pass on to their children. God first, people second, then serve the world. All belongings and possessions fall well below those three.

Our church has nearly secured a HUGE building where we will begin a new ministry; Hope Center. It will be the largest food pantry in the county. They will offer amazing services and assistant to SO many people. The church has been blessed by Meijer who supplied us with the materials and the food items to get started. I'm so excited about this project I can barely contain myself. Some of the families who will be assisted by this program are "MY" kids...the ones I teach all day long.

We will be volunteering as a family at the shelter once a month (or more). I want out boys to know that the best way to show God's love isn't to blab about it or to act like your better than others in some way. It's to show people that you love God by showing people that you love others. And to serve the world in ways that show His love.

I'm so excited about where we're going, what we're doing and what's in store for our little family and our BIG church family. God has us where he wants us. That has been proven to us many time...this was just one more.

Sunday, March 7

Today we...

played outside. It was such a great day to do it. So so so needed. And so beautiful!

Thank you, Lord, for giving us a hope for Spring!

Young Chocolatiers Class

This weekend, it's just me and P. And I LOVE these weekends!!

Knowing this weekend was coming up, about 2 months ago, Matt and I signed Payton up for a Young Chocolatiers Class. They were to be making "Easter Holiday Chocolates". I wasn't sure what they would be like, but I knew he'd like it.

So Saturday morning, we finally got up and moving and headed to Miles Cake & Candy Supply Store in Mt. Clemens, MI. The class was a nice size, not too big or too small. They had everything prepared and set out and were ready for the kids when we got there. Payton was so excited. I could tell he was ready to bounce out of his seat.

The class started with making pink chocolate covered popcorn. It was all uphill from there. We made a LOT of chocolate covered things that pertain to the upcoming holiday. Payton really had a fabulous time and, surprisingly, so did I. I didn't think I would, but it was fun! Just the two of us working on projects like that.

Here are the "best of" pictures I have. I submitted the pictures to the owner of the cake supply shop too, so maybe those will be up on her website someday as well.

Tuesday, March 2


I have been waiting all year to study the letter "V" with my kindergarten class. I'm a huge fan of veggies and I know a LOT of kids don't see or taste fresh veggies very often.

Tomorrow, the lesson begins. I went to the veggie market tonight and purchased $25 worth of veggies to introduce to the class. We're going to look at them, touch them, and maybe taste some too! I'm so excited!!!!! (This picture is the bucket 'o veggies. All ready for tomorrow! Taken with my phone...sorry about the quality.)

Monday, March 1

Really? It's been that long?

Wow. I guess it has. Wow has life been busy.

Well, I survived Scholastic Book Fair week at school. It's so incredibly time consuming and stressful. I'm so glad when it's over, but I'm so proud of the money raised and the kids reading with new interest. I've also launched the Accelerated Reader program at Reach. That has been, also, very time consuming. I'm starting to see interest and results from the students, so every bit of work seems to be worth it.

I've started my new "lit" groups in the afternoons too. This time, instead of taking 10-15 students and doing book studies, we're working on comprehension tools in groups of 3-6. It's been great having smaller groups and specific tools and tips to give them. We'll dive into books when we have a few tools under our belts and use them in our reading.

The boys are fantastic. Payton has been doing great in school, of course. He's developing a few bad habits in his work that we're trying to nip. But nothing life altering or anything he can't overcome with instruction. Maxwell is doing amazing. He knows all his uppercase letters, most of his lower case, almost all his phonic sounds, and can spell a few words.

I'm teaching sign language after school to 4th-6th graders, so we've been working on that at home too. Payton is learning a lot. Maxwell is working on the 3 letters to spell "MAX". That's all he cares about right now.

Matt is doing well too! He's been suffering from some back pain and went to the doctor today. They put him on physical therapy and some drugs. Hopefully they start to take effect. He's been incredibly giving the last few weeks with all the stress I've been under at work.

Last week, he asked me to meet him and the kids at a local Italian place we like for dinner. When I arrived, my family wasn't there yet. I got a table and then, I heard "MOMMY!!" Matt had stopped to pick me up a beautiful bouquet. So thoughtful! He even "let" me go out with my friends on Friday night. SO needed!!!!

I finally caught a break this weekend. The boys and I spent a lot of time doing nothing. That was GREAT!! One thing we did do: Build A Snowman!! I'm so ready for Spring!