Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Is it Wednesday already?

Well, then, I guess it's time for Works For Me Wednesday - the brainchild of the other Shannon.

My tip for this week is a super-easy way to clean my shower and glass door. You must be careful not to slip, but there aren't any toxic fumes:) I grab a magic eraser and some dishwashing liquid and hop in the shower. Soap scum comes off with so little scrubbing that I can just throw the sponge on the floor and use my foot to wipe it clean:) A good thing since my shower is so small there is no way to clean the floor while you're in there and I hate cleaning the shower fully clothed! You get all icky. This way I clean me and the shower at the same time:)

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Blissful Quiet

The house is eerily quiet. Levi and Casey have run to town pick up Casey's Rx (for pinkeye, poor baby, on top of the viral infection settled in his throat) and Brenna and Jack are sleeping like little angels:) Goodness, it doesn't take much to make me giddy lately - just a little peace and quiet!
There are approximately nine-five thousand things running through my brain right now. Should I get started on all the food I'm cooking for dinner at church tomorrow (we're dedicating the upstairs of our building which is finally finished and desperately needed! PTL!) or clean the back half of the house or do some more laundry or clean my desk or read a book (and if so which ONE? I have a shelf of 14 waiting to be read!)? Or should I get started on one of the many sewing projects I have stacked up on my sewing table? What about painting the highchair or mirrors or desks I have downstairs waiting on me? Maybe I should really scrub my shower - the door is not supposed to be frosted glass, after all. I have too much to do:)
But, the thing is, although all those things are certainly easier sans children, I can do them all with little ones by my side. It's rare that I have the chance to be alone with my Father so I think I'll get back to all of you later and get out that letter He wrote me.

*when performing spellcheck, it stopped on the word highchair. Replacement option? Hijacker! That's funny to my sleepy mommybrain:)

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Works for Me Wednesday (again)

Boy this has been a busy week. Everybody has either had a cold or been fighting one (except Jack! don't tell me breastfeeding's not worth it!). We all feel pretty yucky. So here is my health related tip...

When you feel a cold coming on, right away put a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in your ears (take turns) and let it bubble. When it stops bubbling, drain your ear and do the next one. If you do it a few times a day you can usually stop a cold in its tracks. I don't know why it works, but it does!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Works for Me Wednesday

I haven't had time to read all the entries today, so I hope this isn't a repeat.

I make fajita kits for nights when we're really busy. Frozen peppers and onions in one ziploc bag, frozen (fully cooked, seasoned and sliced) chicken in another bag, tortillas in another bag, and shredded cheese and taco sauce in smaller ziploc bags. Then I put all of that in a BIG bag and stick it in the freezer. I can grab one out, heat everything up and have dinner ready in less than 20 minutes!

What I've been doing wrong

Amy has written a wonderful post on raising boys that I think every mom of boys should read. I had asked her about things she and her husband do to teach their oldest son (who is newly 8 and adorable) to be chivalrous and responsible and, well, a good man. It was so sweet of her to write something for me! Since I became a mom, I've been looking for moms who were at the same stage of parenting and a little ahead so that I could learn from them - asking questions and observing the *fruit* of what they're doing. The moms around me in the real world are wonderful - many of them are dear friends. But few of them have a vision for their children similar to the one that God has given Casey and I for our family. That is why I feel so blessed to have this blogging community of women who are so open and so willing to share what they're doing that works and what doesn't.
Which brings me to the topic of this post - what we've been doing that ISN'T working. Now don't get me wrong, I think Levi is a fabulous kid:) He's very interested in learning more about his Heavenly Father, he loves to help his earthly dad, he's very sweet and funny and loving. He loves boy stuff like baseball and fishing. Just one of my three favorite kids on the PLANET:) But lately we've been noticing a few things we really don't like and aren't willing to tolerate. Mouthiness, disrespectfulness, selfishness. We've tried some things that are *supposed* to work - being very firm, removing privledges, tomato staking, and yes spanking. We've even, I'm ashamed to say, done some stuff that we know doesn't work and isn't right - yelling and lecturing. Everything had some effect. Some things were much more effectual than others. But the bad behavior still lingers.
*I've got to stop and say one more time that overall, he is a great kid. I think that may even be why this has been bothering me SO much. He's just usually so great to be around that this seemed even worse by comparison to his usual personality.*
But after a lot of prayer and reading Amy's post and a few other things like this great post from Molly, I think I've figured what I'm doing wrong. Or maybe I've just opened my eyes to what God's been showing me. We've spent much to much time trying to correct wrong behavior instead of building the right attitudes in him. He's been watching a few too many movies (we're cautious about what he watches, but even the movies that seem good to me have *bad guys* for him to emulate). And he's been around a few bad influences. DH has been working incredibly long hours (bless his heart!) and I think Levi is missing him. It's been rainy and yucky a lot (when it's not really hot) and we haven't been outside as much. I've been busy with figuring out how to juggle the needs of a preschooler, toddler, newborn, and hubby. And, well, just busy. And I think I especially have been turning a blind eye to the fact that he isn't a baby anymore. How awful to think we haven't been giving him exactly what he needs! And how humbling for someone who gets a little prideful about her mothering sometimes.
So dh and I are developing a new game plan. So far it's going to involve a lot of outside, running around, boy-time. A lot more one on one time with dad. A lot more responsibility. And a lot more praise for all the things he does so well. A lot of all the good stuff. And a mom who's a lot more cautious about what he sees and hears, but a lot less nitpicky about the *boy stuff * like yelling (it has its place) and being bossy (he is the big brother, he just needs to learn the right way to lead). I'm really excited about raising a young man! And so a big THANK YOU to Amy and to Molly and to my Father for helping me out of this funk!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Works for Me Wednesday

The other Shannon has come up with a great idea I'm going to join her in. Make sure to check out all the great links at her site.

Now for my tip...hmm, I know. Any time one of my babies gets diaper rash, I put them in the bath tub with some baking soda in the water and let them soak. Clears it up every time!

Monday, May 01, 2006

This is going to be a very dull post

You've had fair warning:) We've been super busy around here lately and I just haven't had time to think anything interesting. So I should blog about all the stuff we've been doing, right? Only that's not too interesting either. At least not to anyone but me. But since this is my blog I guess I'll blog about it anyway:)
We had elections at church yesterday and I wasn't even nominated for anything. Now I know that they batted my name around (in the past I've been on the board and Sunday School superintendent, etc) but didn't nominate me because I resigned at the end of last year specifically because with small kids I just can't make that kind of commitment. And since that hasn't changed there was no real point in asking me just to have me turn it down. But I miss being *in the know* and helping to make the big decisions. So should I just quit having kids and in a year or two be right back in the thick of things? I think no. Following God's plan for me right now means missing out on some stuff and maybe serving less at church because I'm so busy serving at home. And sometimes when people point that out to me, it hurts my feelings a little bit because, like most humans, I want what I want when I want it. But I just keep reminding myself that there will be plenty of time for all those things I want to do, if that's part of His plan for me, later when motherhood is not quite so demanding.
Also going on lately - some serious homeschool planning. Right now we're working through Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. It's going well. I'm trying not to make it a high pressure thing since my main goal for right now is just to instill a love of learning at home. We're also playing with some math stuff and reading these sample pages from A Child's Geography. Which is fabulous by the way. Also, Levi got a new story Bible for Easter with slightly more in depth stories than the usual babyBibles So we're reading several stories out of that every night. That's been really fun. We've really expanded how much we read together as a family.
I got to go to my first LIFT (that's Ladies In Fellowship Together - have you ever heard such a corny name for a women's ministry group? I might have been the one that came up with that. Either way, we need a cooler name) meeting since before Jack was born. It was great. Things didn't go exactly as planned - something that was only suppose to take a few minutes wound up taking more than an hour - but that's all I'm going to say about that. The night was great for me. Fellowship with other women is something that I never imagined myself *needing* but it is so necessary for me. And these women! They're the best!
Well, that's about all the catching up I have time for right now because Levi wants to do some math worksheets (yeah!) and because he says his water is missing. Like it's this big mystery. So it's Inspector Mom off to search the shelves of the refridgerator. Until next time...