Friday, December 31, 2010

A new year...

2 Cor 5:17 - The old has passed away, behold all things become new.
I love New Year's Eve. It feels so much like a chance to wipe the slate clean. And boy, does my slate need cleaning sometimes.
If I've learned anything this year, it is that I'm not NEARLY as wonderful as I think I am. I have so many more issues that I ever knew about. Anger. Control. Power. Pride. The list could go on for ages, but for the sake of my sanity when I go back and read this later, I will stop now.
I often take my children places and complete strangers tell me how wonderfully they are behaving.
You must be doing something right.
How in the world are you so blessed to have such wonderful angels?
You must be a great mom...
So on and so forth... I appreciate it. I really do. But then I go home and cry.... if I even make it home.
Not too long ago, this happened at Cracker Barrel. Prince Charming and I took all 5 of our little crazies out for breakfast. About half way through our meal, an older gentleman and his bride walked by us and he whispered a sweet remark about how pleasant it was to see so many kids behaving so well in public. I thanked him very much and assured him it was only by the grace of God.
Toward the end of our meal, a lady from a nearby table headed our direction. She also commented about how wonderful they had been. I thanked her politely and continued to get my kids ready to head back out to the car. Charming took several and left two with me. I sat quietly for a few moments, waiting for the last two to finish their last minute bites and put on their coats. As I sat, I was overcome with the need to tell this woman that she was crazy. My kids are not well behaved, they are faking it! But I knew it wasn't true. They are well behaved. I have amazing kids.
Ma'am, thank you for your kind words about my children. I really needed to hear that today. I've been yelling at them for one thing after another all morning.
So far that morning, Cuddlebug had broken 3 dishes, Muscles had been in trouble several times, Protector and Princess were being good... generally, and Baby Girl was, well, a baby. I was so frustrated with them that we almost didn't go out to eat. I'm glad we did though. It was a reminder that we all have our problems, but to most people, we look pretty nice. Perhaps we're not quite as dysfunctional as I think we are.

30 Day Photo Project

Day 2: Photo of self and the person you have been the closest with the longest.

This feels kinda like a cop-out picture, but this is me, along with some ladies that have been dear friends of mine for many years.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

30 Day Photo Project

I recently discovered this list of a 30 day photo project. It looks like fun, so I think I'll give it a shot. Here are the list of days, with Day 1 completed at the bottom.

30 Day Photo Project
Day 1: Photo of self with 15 facts
Day 2: Photo of self and the person you have been the closest with the longest
Day 3: Photo of Cast of your favorite TV show
Day 4: Photo of Your Night
Day 5: Photo of an Old Memory
Day 6: Photo of a person you would love to trade places with
Day 7: Photo of most treasured item
Day 8: Picture that always makes you laugh
Day 9: Picture of person who has gotten me through the most
Day 10: Picture of the person you do the most messed up things with
Day 11: Picture of something you hate
Day 12: Picture of something you love
Day 13: Picture of Fave band/Artist
Day 14: Picture of someone you could never imagine life without
Day 15: Picture of something you want to do before you die
Day 16: Picture of someone who inspires you
Day 17: Picture of something that has made a big impact on you
Day 18: Picture of your biggest insecurity
Day 19: A picture and a letter
Day 20: Picture of somewhere you would like to travel
Day 21: Picture of something you wish you could forget
Day 22: Picture of something you wish you were better at
Day 23: Picture of a favorite book
Day 24: Picture of something you wish you could change
Day 25: Picture of your Day
Day 26: Picture of something that means a lot to you
Day 27: PIcture of yourself and a family member
Day 28: A picture of something you're afraid of
Day 29: A picture that always makes you smile
Day 30: A picture of someone you miss

So, here is Day 1. Not only is it a pic of me, but it's a pic of me and a gorgeous stud!!!

1. I love Jesus.
2. I love Jason.
3. I have 5 wonderful kids.
4. I'd dying to start homeschooling.
5. I hate seeing old pictures of my kids and seeing how much they've grown up, I want them to stay little so badly.
6. I'm coming up on 6 years cancer free.
7. My baby brother has my dream job... you know, if I had a dream job.
8. I'd drop Louisville on a dime and move my family to Africa if I had the chance.
9. Two and a half years later and I still miss my Papaw so much that I cry at night.
10. I can make a mean meatloaf.
11. I LOVE fresh baked bread.
12. I secretly love when my kids sneak in my room at night and climb in my bed.
13. I get incredibly frustrated when I watch season after season of a show on Netflix, and then get to the end of season 5 (or whatever) and season 6 isn't out yet...
14. When I put up my Christmas tree, the lights stay on 24-7 until, with great disappointment, I have to put it all away. I hate the sight of an unlit Christmas tree.
15. I think Cuddlebug took a screw out of my desk chair and I could fall on the floor any second now...

So tired... so very tired.

No, I'm not too sleep deprived. Just tired. My kiddos are wearing me out lately. Muscles especially. Every day is a tantrum... or 2, or 3, or if I'm really lucky, 4. It is so hard to express to him that I love him, while I'm biting my tongue.

He has some days that are better than others. I have some days that are better than others. I've just run across a blog that I think I may love. She seems to share some daily battles with me. Pray for us as we teach our children that our love is real, and our family is forever.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Blessing upon blessing

As always, so many things to be thankful for. Especially thankful for #46 this evening :)

41. The laughter that my children bring to my life :)

42. trampoline tricks

43. someone to share my burdens with

44. candy corn and peanuts mixed together in yummy goodness

45. piles of neatly folded CLEAN clothes

46. ice cold milk

47. extra remote controls... just in case

48. TPR ruling for dear friends who are going through much the same story we are living

49. Soft music in the background of my thoughts throughout the day

50. hard lessons to be learned

51. source code

holy experience

Friday, September 3, 2010

What did she ever do to him???

So, we passed a church this morning with a tall steeple and a little cross on top. Protector started jumping in excitement in the back seat, "Mommy! Look, it's a little cross for Princess to die on!" Wow... What did she ever do to him? So we had to go into great detail, yet again, about how she doesn't have to die on the cross. Jesus already did that for us. My kids are hilarious. I love them so dearly. Each day is a blessing :)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Another day....

Today has been a fun day. The kiddos have been behaving... for the most part. Cuddlebug, as usual, doesn't want to take a nap. He prefers to climb up in my lap and cuddle. Stinker. I went to the school board today to appeal a decision that Muscles can't change schools. They said that if he can be placed in another school, they will call me today and let me know. He goes to school 18 miles from our house, so I have to drive over 70 miles a day to take him to school and back. Hopefully they will call me with a new school today. It's nearly 3:00, though, so it's not looking good. Alas.

Monday, August 30, 2010

One Thousand Gifts

I am blessed so very much. Even as I sit here listening to 3 kids screaming because they have to go to bed, I can't help but be thankful that I have kids that can scream. The Lord is so good to me. So very good.

33. Charming's promotion at work. So uplifting to his heart.

34. freshly bathed baby's covered with heavenly lotion

35. the belief of others that i can do amazing things

36. family that cares for and loves my little ones as if they have been here all along

37. baby's first crawl

38. a Bible believing church family

39. fluxx

40. fudge and funnel cakes at the state fair

Visit A Holy Experience daily for uplifting words of encouragement. Or join others in being thankful for the every day things.

holy experience

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Doing it the State's way....

We took Muscles to his weekly counseling this morning. I can't wait until we can choose his counselor ourselves. I appreciate the advice they have to offer, but quite frankly, they have a different agenda than I do. I often feel that I just have to make it through what they expect and one day, we can live our own lives.

When we finally have good ideas, they get shot down. It feels like everyone is saying they want us to succeed, but secretly betting against us. I'm frustrated. Pray that the process ends quickly and adoptions can happen without too much delay.

Monday, August 23, 2010

One Thousand Gifts

25. handsome little boys to wake up with

26. friends that help you through the roughest of times

27. a fellowship of believers that worships on saturday nights

29. blueberry muffins

30. the smell of a new magazine

31. mystery shopping :)

32. early in the morning, when all little ones sleep.... shower time, in peace and quiet.

speaking of shower time in peace and quiet.... i'm out. have a blessed day

Enjoy the thankfulness of others at:

holy experience

Sunday, August 22, 2010

I gonna die cross today.

It's so much fun to watch my kids learn about the Lord. Sometimes it makes me laugh, sometimes it makes me cry, but I always love it. We go to church on Saturday night and again on Sunday morning. It's kinda weird, but we like it. Charming has to work on Sunday mornings, so we go to the Saturday night service so that we can worship together. We have a class that we've grown to love over that last year that meets on Sunday mornings, and I long for that fellowship every week, so I get up on Sunday and take the kids after Charming has gone to work. The kiddos do the same lessons both times, but they still enjoy it.

This morning, as we were making the trek from the parking lot to the church building, Princess cracked me up. Not just me, either. Anyone that was within earshot cracked up as well... and let me tell you, my little Princess has a BOOMING voice, so there were many within earshot. She announced, "Mommy, I die cross today."

"Huh? You what?"

"I gonna die cross today!" she replied, with a huge smile.

"You're going to die on the cross today?"

"Yep, I are."

"Well, Princess, I don't think you have to do that. I'm pretty sure Jesus took care of that a long time ago for you."

"Oh" she replied with a little disappointment in her voice, as if her plans for the day were shot now. "Ok then."

And that was that.


Speaking of learning about the Lord. Muscles brought my heart such joy and hope today. He and Protector got in trouble for peeing outside.... yes, that's right, another peeing story... and they had to come in and go to their room. Muscles quite nearly threw a fit, but I caught him before it got out of control and asked him what the problem was. "I didn't do it, Mommy! I promise!"

"Well, Muscles, stomping through the house and yelling at Daddy probably isn't the best way to tell him you didn't do it. What do you think would be a better option?"

"Saying, 'Daddy, I didn't do it.'"

"I think that would work better, don't you? Why don't you calm down a little and then ask Daddy to come talk to you?"

"You don't understand! I can't calm down! I can't control my anger!"

"Yes you can, Muscles. You are the only one that can control it. I can't do it for you. You have to decide to do it. You are the ONLY one that can."

My wise son replied, "No, I'm not. Jesus can control it."

"Yes, sweetie, Jesus can control it. But he won't unless you let him."

Can you see the glimmer of hope? I can. Oh, and it is a beautiful little glimmer, isn't it? :)

A boy worth fighting for

We had another major blowout this Thursday. Muscles was sent to his room for something silly, at which point he exploded. We ended up with a broken window and a hole in the wall. He also quite nearly dropped the top bunk bed on himself when he was on the bottom kicking the top bed. This was not his worst episode, but probably the worst one that I've had to deal with on my own, as Charming was out visiting with his Daddy.

I'm very frustrated. According to his social worker, we discipline too harshly. I'm not sure exactly what she expects us to do with a 7 year old that bites, hits, screams bloody murder, tears up books, breaks windows, kicks holes in walls, breaks beds, .... you get the point. Don't get me wrong. Muscles is an amazing little boy with a huge heart and I wouldn't trade him for anything.... ANYTHING. But he is difficult.

He usually gets to a point in his fit, where he realizes he's doing something really, really dumb. He tries to backpedal, but knows he's in too deep. It's at this point that he starts putting his walls up around his heart. He thinks that since he's gone too far, we're going to send him to another family to live with. "It doesn't matter, you're going to call Jenn* (social worker) to come and take me away anyway!!" He has reason to feel this way. It has happened before... several times.

After about an hour of his fit, I went outside to take a break. Charming had returned home and began taking the bunk beds apart so that no one would get hurt on them in the midst of the fit. When I came back, I found Muscles crying at the top of his lungs for Mommy. I went back in his room and with a great sigh, asked what he needed. He needed a hug. From Mommy. This is the point I'd been waiting for. Once he gets here, we are good for the night. He sat in my lap and I held him for a few minutes, reminding him that we love him no matter what. He tells me that he is so scared that we will not keep him. I assure him that we will. Then, we go a little deeper...

"Muscles, why do you think we won't keep you?" (knowing the answer already, but wanting him to realize the answer himself)

"Because no one does."

"Why do you think Kim* and Kevin* didn't keep you?"

"I was mean to their kids and got in trouble a lot."

"Why do you think Rebecca* didn't keep you?"

"I didn't obey her very much."

"Why do you think Chris* and Darlene* didn't keep you?"

"I was bad and threw fits when they told me what to do."

"Why do you think your birth parents didn't keep you?"

"They weren't taking good care of me." Ahh, we're getting somewhere with this one...

"Sweetie, you are right about your parents. They weren't taking care of you like a good Mommy and Daddy should. But Chris and Darlene couldn't keep you because they were just too old to handle small kids. They couldn't keep up, and wanted you to have a better life. Rebecca didn't keep you because she had a lot of bad things happen in her life at one time and she couldn't handle the responsibility of taking care of you and Princess. Kim and Kevin didn't keep you because of their own selfishness and immaturity. You were not safe there. NONE of this was your fault."

This is what it always comes down to. He is protecting his heart from more pain. This is a battle that I'm afraid we will have for many years. He has been told too many times that, "We will love you forever" and "One day we will adopt you and you will be one of us." and "Nevermind, goodbye." Why would he believe that we are any different? We have told him, "We will love you forever." We have told him that, "As soon as we're allowed, we will adopt you." Now, he's just waiting for the, "Nevermind. Goodbye."

Pray for my little one's heart. Pray that he will learn to trust us. Pray that we (okay, mostly me) will be more patient with him. Pray that when he's throwing a fit, he doesn't destroy property or injure anyone. But mostly, pray that Jesus gets ahold of him and Muscles surrenders to the Love that is greater than any Mommy and Daddy can give him.

(*names changed)

Monday, August 16, 2010


Our church just announced a week called Momentum in October. It will be an amazing opportunity to invite friends and family who don't normally attend church to come to an exciting event with NO pressure. Over the course of 5 days, there will be 7 events that are going to be SOOOOOOO much fun! I'd love to go to them all. Here's a list, in case you are interested:

October 4 - Bear Grylls from Man vs. Wild
October 6 - Danny Cahill Season 8 winner of The Biggest Loser
PureNRG from Disney Radio
October 7 - Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar of TLC's 19 Kids and Counting
October 8 - SHINE Prom
This week is going to be incredibly fun! Bring a friend and come join the fun!!

One Thousand Gifts

18. The peace after the bedtime fight is over.

19. That one day, when my children are adopted, Charming and I will chose how to discipline instead of someone else telling us how.

20. My Prince Charming and the calm that he brings to my heart when I can't take one more second of the madness.

21. The first day of school.

22. The blessing of a wonderful summer with a houseful of kids.

23. A church that has amazing Bible Studies that I can partake in.

24. A peace that passes all understanding.

holy experience

Saturday, August 14, 2010

One Thousand Gifts

Yeah, this is supposed to be a Monday thing, but let's face it. I'm usually late. I'd rather be thankful late than never thankful :)

9. Massages

10. Chocolate Fondue

11. a 14 year old spending the night and helping with the kiddos in the morning so i can sleep a bit

12. naptime

13. playground at church is fenced in. kids can roam free

14. hats for $1 at walmart

15. pain killers

16. toaster strudel

17. back to school shopping

holy experience

Sicky McSickerson

Saturday, everyone was throwing up.... EVERYONE. It was not pretty, to say the least. On top of that, we were staying at a friend's house. Between the 8 kids and 3 adults, 10 of us were sick. Again, not pretty. We got better, though... at least, most of us did.

Baby Girl stopped throwing up, but started having other problems. By Monday evening, I took her to the ER. We left with multiple diagnoses, and an appointment with the pediatrician in the morning. When all was said and done, we were told she had pinkeye, an upper respiratory infection, an ear infection, and possibly chicken pox. That's a lot for a 7 month old to deal with. She's feeling much better now. Not one hundred percent recovered, but better. Reminded me of some friends from church who are adopting some little beauties from the heart of Africa. The baby girl, 6 months old, is sick and malnourished in the hospital. I know my Baby Girl feels better because her mommy can hold her. Please keep this family in your prayers as they long to hold their little one, but can't for several months.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The most wonderful day

It was 5 years ago, though it seems like a thousand, though it seems like just yesterday. Jason and I began our crazy adventure together. We've tackled lots of crazy things together. I am so blessed. Thank you, my love.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Rough week

Muscles has been having a lot of trouble controlling his anger. Please be praying for him. We've had several fits this week, each progressively worse than the previous. Saturday night we were up past midnight with him throwing a fit. It was over a 15 minute time out.... that started at 8:00. It was one of the most ridiculous things I've seen in my life. Charming ended up being late for work in the morning, because he was up so late holding Muscles still so that he would stop screaming and throwing things. He will be going to therapy every week for awhile to see what we need to do to improve the situation.

Since Saturday, we've had several more episodes. Some worse than others, but each a reminder that man is sinful, and God is ever-loving, and ever-forgiving.

Monday, July 26, 2010

One Thousand Gifts

I participated in One Thousand Gifts previously, and I'm excited to do so again. This is a community of believers that are purposeful about giving thanks for the blessings God has bestowed. Here we go:

1. I am eternally His!

2. Wonderful, adoring husband

3. amazing children

4. wisdom of an older generation

5. a Bible believing church

6. full gas tank

7. Fluxx

8. Photoshop

holy experience

When my heart skipped a beat.

I was looking through an old blog of mine, that hasn't been updated in ages. The most recent updates are from January. I decided that I'd let that one die away and begin anew. I may borrow a few snippets from it as reposts as I go along. Hopefully I'll keep up this time, eh? Anyhow. I wanted to share something that I posted on that blog. It's from December 29 of last year.

We took the boys to visit their birth mom today. During the visit, the social worker told us about 3 children that she needs to place and is having a hard time finding a home for. My eyes lit up. Three more little ones!?!? She smiled and we talked about it a bit. I was picking out curtains for the little girls’ room in my head. To my joy, Jason was okay with the idea. Our new landlord, however, was not. My heart broke, and is breaking still. I know it’s a lot of kids, but they need a Mommy and a Daddy. They need a forever home. I’m sorry, beautiful ones, I will pray that God will bless you with an even better Mommy and Daddy that we could ever be.

We prayed and prayed for these little ones. Before we knew their names. Before we knew their faces. Before we knew their hearts. My heart longed to take them home.

But it wasn't possible.

There would be such an enormous amount of red tape. They were in a different county, in a different region. There would be other families that would love to take them. Out of hundreds of foster families, there would have to be NO families that could take them in their region. Social services would have to look through other counties to find a family. There would have to be NO other families in these counties as well.

It just wasn't going to happen.

My heart became heavy.

Five months later our social worker called me and said, "You're not going to believe this. There is absolutely NO ONE else that can take these kids. Are you sure you want them?" :) :) :) Isn't God funny :)

The testing of the parents

So, I guess Muscles is trying to discover if we really love him. That's the best I can come up with. Yesterday, he hit me. Yeah... he really did. He was sorry for it later... very sorry, but still. I've talked with Charming about this a few times, trying to understand the root of the problem so that we can get to a solution. It's not that he's never been disciplined before. He has. I don't know exactly how, or to what extent, but he has been disciplined. Pray for us. We are trying to not exasperate him, but when he does this, it get's hard for me to control MY anger, which of course only throws gas on the fire.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Really? Again?

So, Protector runs up to Me and Captain outside and yells, "Muscles dumped pee on me!" At this point, I'm quite confused. Why does Muscles have pee in something that would allow him to "dump it on me"? Why in the world did this happen? How did this happen outside where, just to relieve any confusion, we do NOT have a toilet?

Come to find out, Princess, yeah, it was her this time decided that if the boys can pee outside, she can too... so she did... in a cup... and Ty "thought it was water" so he threw it on Protector. Aren't brothers (and sisters) great?

Friday, July 23, 2010

Oh, what is this? I think I'll pee in it...

Wow... Protector peed in a cupin the bathroom. Yeah, he did. Well, it wasn't

really a cup, it was more like a container. A monkey container.

Not sure why it's in the bathroom. Actually, I'm not sure what it really is or where it came from. Then he lied about it. BIG mistake. I dumped it out and cleaned it, and filled it with water and told him to drink it since he thinks it goes in a cup like a drink. He flipped out! (No, I didn't really make him... sheesh) He refused to drink it (thank goodness) so I dumped it on his head (remember... it's just water at this point) and put him in the bathtub since he was "stinky". I don't think he'll do it again :)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The bowl overfloweth

Cuddlebug came in my room and said, "Da toilet paper not go'n down. i try to fix it, but it still not go down!" I, very slowly, walked out of my room and saw the entire bathroom flooded, with a plunger, a bowl cleaner, and lots of toilet paper on the floor... and all down the hallway. Really?