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Archive for the ‘Granite’ Category

Knowing that the best way to get anything done around here is to do it with Meadow and Granite on my team, I sat them both down last week and pointed out that we really need to figure out a schedule that will help us do what we need to do each day. We talked about how life has been a little crazy since Canyon was born, how mama has been very tired and distracted, how the house has been pretty messy and the laundry stacked to the ceiling in the laundry room (I am barely exaggerating) and how a schedule could help get us back on track and make our needed tasks more manageable. So with a pen and paper in hand, I posed the question, “What should go on our schedule each day?” and then listened as they each gave me their suggestions, before adding my own ideas to the list. What ensued is a classic example of the contrast between my two oldest children, and so indicative of their personalities. There is never a dull moment in this house.

Now I just need to work on converting these lists into an actual schedule. In the meantime, I feel compelled to share…

 

As stated at our dining room table:

Meadow’s List:

school

straighten house

pump (Obviously, this one will be on mama’s schedule, not hers. But I love that she thought to list it!)

take care of Baby Canyon

spend time with our family

eat dinner/eat healthy

baths

exercise to make our bodies healthy

wash hands

compost

get dressed

 

Granite’s List:

pumpkin

king (He may not have completely understood the assignment…)

look at the stars until they are all gone

games

after drinks (???)

healthy

twinkle think…just like in Abby’s flying fairy school.

Me: Huh?

MG: It’s from Elmo.

Me: Oh.

G: I don’t like twinkle think.

MG: I do.

G: I don’t. Are we done?

Me: Can you think of anything else?

G: Done. Now let’s play the thankful game.

 

And added later (after playing the thankful game):

Mama’s List:

feed Canyon/change diaper/playtime/nap

make/serve/eat/clean up from breakfast, lunch, dinner

shower, get dressed and ready for the day

morning chores (unload dishwasher, start laundry, make beds)

activities with G while MG does school (games, books, learning activities)

afternoon chores (fold and put away laundry, clean kitchen, straighten house)

take walk

nap/rest/quiet time

playtime/outside time

bedtime routine (baths, pjs, brush teeth, read books, pray, sing songs)

blog/write

run/workout

read Bible

time with hubby (after munchkins are in bed)

 

I think between Meadow and I (and Granite??) we remembered everything that needs to be on our daily list. There will also be days of grocery shopping, errand running, doctor and dentist appointments, play dates, and random projects, but if we can make a flexible schedule for the above to stick to on “normal” days, I’m convinced that order will return and chaos will no longer reign.

Now if I could just get a good night’s sleep, the fog might clear and doing all of this might actually sound possible! 😉

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August 10 at 2:47pm

Walked a little over three miles on the trails in Gatlinburg this past weekend. So gorgeous! And a little over two at Radnor today with Meadow and Granite. They were little troopers. The walk wore us all out! 5 more down…63 to go!

August 12 at 2:55pm

Just walked the neighborhood with Summer and my munchkins. 2 more down…61 to go!

August 15 at 11:48pm

Took a walk with the munchkins around three this afternoon and it was warm but not hot! Praise the Lord for this cooler weather, I love it!! All three of us walked the first mile, I pushed Gran in the stroller while Mead rode her bike for the second mile then just Gran and I did the last mile (with him still in the stroller) while Mead went across the street to our neighbor’s house. The walk was challenging but also energizing and enjoyable. So proud of my kids for being active with me. 3 more down…58 to go!

August 16 at 2:30pm

Walked a 10k (not an official one. just our own.) with M and G this morning! It was challenging but amazing! They both walked the first mile with me, M rode her bike the second and third mile while G rode in the stroller then they both rode in the stroller for miles four through six (while listening to music, eating a snack and practicing letters, numbers, shapes and animals on the magnadoodle!). The weather was glorious, their attitudes were amazing and though it took FOREVER I loved it!! So proud of my munchkins (especially Meadow, her first time to go three miles without stopping!). 6 more down…52 to go!!!

August 18 at 12:20am

‎4 more down…48 to go!

August 19 at 11:31am

Ran/walked a 5k (an official one this time! haha. not just around the neighborhood) last night in 41 minutes with Meg, Chassi, Lauren and Summer! 98 % of the crowd was under 18, under 120 pounds and/or exceptionally tall and muscular (which was hilarious to us old, pregnant people) BUT we had a great time and the trail was gorgeous (even if it did take me 2 1/2 times as long to finish as the guy who came in first place!) So glad Meg told us about it, so thankful for Summer who stuck with me the WHOLE time, really enjoyed my fun evening with good friends! I feel so blessed. 3 more down…45 to go!

August 20 at 11:52am

Had a GREAT walk at River Park with Chassi this morning!! It wasn’t easy but felt so good to start my Saturday that way. Thankful that she was willing to slow waaay down for me. And we saw Jamie and her fam and Corinne and her munchkins while we were there! 6 more down…39 to go!

August 22 at 9:32am

Had a quiet three mile walk last night after my family was in bed. Was a good, much needed hour of prayer and clearing my head. 3 more down…36 to go!

August 22 at 11:36pm

Walked 1 1/2 miles with my girl tonight (per her request to join me. such a cutie.) then another 1 1/2 listening to my ipod. I am slow as Christmas but feeling decent and LOVING this amazing weather! 3 more down…33 to go!

August 24 at 12:22am

Took a walk around the block again tonight. Walked the first mile with my two little troopers. Walked the second mile and a half pushing my two troopers in the jogging stroller while G slept and M and I played learning games for the half hourish. Then finished with another 3 1/2 after Chaz and the munchkins were in bed. Had more prayer time and calibration once I was alone and it was dark and quiet. Seem to need that more than ever these days. 6 more down…27 to go.

August 24 at 9:46pm

Walked at River Park this afternoon with M and G. Meadow rode her bike all three miles, her longest bike ride to date! Still blown away by how much walking/running/riding she is able to do. Gran sat surprisingly quiet and content in the stroller the whole time. Was a hot day for a walk but with the breeze and the shaded trail it was completely bearable. Love River Park. Love my munchkins! 3 more down…24 to go!

August 29 at 10:21pm

Well let’s see, after a three mile walk LATE Thursday night (during which I ran into Luke and Anna on their way to the store and had to admit that yes I walk at all hours of the day and night and yes, I know that makes me a little bit crazy…), another three mile walk through the neighborhood Friday evening while Chaz ran errands with the munchkins, a hot and challenging but somehow still enjoyable six mile walk on Sunday afternoon at River Park (followed by 130 oz of water), and a three mile walk tonight (with Summer and Meadow during the first mile and a half), I’ve got…15 more down…9 to go!

September 1 at 12:42am

Walked two miles last night while Chaz put the munchkins to bed. Did NOT want to…but made myself do it anyway. Then walked three more today…the first mile this afternoon with M and G, the second mile several hours later with G in the stroller while M helped the hubby fry up some farm fresh veggies for dinner, and finally the third mile after the hubs and kids were in bed for the night. (G ran A LOT of the first mile without being prompted or encouraged to and would stay just ahead of his sister and me while he was running. Super cute and impressive. He walked the rest of the mile in between us, holding our hands, which I LOVE. And though my second mile would normally occur immediately following my first mile, my Garmin died, which just enough discouragement to cause a rearrangement of our plan. Plus it was super hot at that point in the day so waiting a while to continue just sounded way too appealing. And then dinner ended up being ready after the second mile and the kids’ bedtime routine followed right after that causing the additional delay between the second and third…) So yeah, after this crazy day of walking I’ve got…5 more down…only 4 more to go!!!

September 1 at 11:45pm

Completed my 300 miles this afternoon with my two sidekicks and my one in utero! LAST 4 down…0 more to go!!!!!!

Part 3 of 300 Miles will be coming soon so stay tuned for 300 Miles: The Ups and Downs of The Final Four!

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A Rare Good Night’s Sleep: Had.

Mug of Decaf Coffee: Savored.

One Year Bible: Read.

Sunshine: Admired.

Beds: Made.

Breakfast and Lunch: Served. And Eaten.

Blog Post: Posted.

Google Reader: Perused.

Grocery List: Started.

Phone Calls: Made.

Indoor Plants: Watered.

First Grade Bible, Reading, History/Geography, Math, Science, Writing/Spelling, and Piano Lessons: Taught.

Preschool Letters, Numbers, Colors, Shapes, Animals and Potty Training Lessons: Taught.

Most Dishes: Washed. Dried. Put Away.

Counters and Tables and Chairs: Wiped.

Living Room and Dining Room Floor: Swept.

Some (but Not Enough) Laundry: Washed. Dried. Folded. Put Away.

Toys, Games, Puzzles, Movies, Art Supplies, School Supplies: Picked Up. Put Away.

Piles: Er…Improved.

Crockpot Chicken and Potatoes with Organic Farm Fresh Squash and Zucchini Casserole and Giant Bowl of Organic Farm Fresh Watermelon: Prepared. Served for Dinner. Thoroughly Enjoyed.

Leftovers: Refrigerated.

Food Scraps: Composted.

Heat: Avoided.

100 Ounces of Water: Downed.

Pandora: Turned Up.

Baby (Still in Utero): Nourished. Held. Protected. Eagerly Anticipated.

Children: Hugged. Kissed. Held. Dressed. Fed. Taught. Trained. Reminded. Assisted. Reminded Again. Disciplined. Listened to. Read to. Laughed with. Snuggled with. Prayed with. Comforted. Adored. Enjoyed. Marveled At. Appreciated.

Husband: Missed. Appreciated. Kissed. Cuddled with. Enjoyed.

Friends and Family: Texted. Facebooked. Emailed.

Three Mile Walk: Taken.

Pregnancy Journal: Updated.

Labor: Anticipated.

Many Prayers: Uttered.

Blessings: Counted.

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June 27 at 10:08am

I committed to Chassi on June 2nd that my new goal was to walk/run 150 miles by the end of August and to hit 300 miles for my entire pregnancy. I’m at 193 miles so far. That leaves another 107 to cover over the next 11 1/2(ish) weeks. I walked 3 early this morning. (which felt amazing! great weather and prayer time and gorgeous rising sun!) We will see how the rest of the week goes!

June 28 at 11:14pm

Walked two miles and ran 1 mile tonight! Beautiful night, amazing hour of prayer and meditation…3 more down, 104 to go!

June 29 at 10:35pm

‎2 more down…(first 1 of 2 with Meadow on her bike beside me…then she ran a second mile with Chaz!…such a cutie!!)…102 to go.

June 30 at 2:22pm

‎”Dead Last Finish is greater than Did Not Finish which greatly trumps Did Not Start.” – saw this quote last week and loved it!

July 8 at 7:44am

6 more down…96 to go! Walked 2.5 miles around our block on Tuesday. And walked/ran 3.5 miles this morning. It rained the whole time. I must say though, rain feels much better than heat! Good times.

July 13 at 7:41pm

Walked 2 more miles Monday night…94 to go. My hubby and kiddos joined me for the first mile. Granite ran most of it! So proud of him! (and Meadow too…she is a stronger runner every month it seems) And Meadow rode her bike beside me for the second mile. I am getting pretty discouraged though. Even 2 miles feels like a lot at this point. I so much want to stay active but with this heat, frequent fatigue and my heavy belly I’m wearing down/slowing down. :/ Will keep walking (and running a mile here and there) but not confident I will hit 300! I’d even be happy with 250 at the rate I’m going…

July 17 at 9:19pm

6 more down, 88 to go! Ran 2 1/2 miles and walked 1/2 mile Wed night and walked 2 miles and ran 1 mile tonight! (Including a 1/4 mile where I carried Granite because he fell and got a pretty good scrape on his knee! Whew! THAT was a good workout!) Still struggling with motivation but not feeling as discouraged as last week. Making it my goal this week to walk or run at least 2 miles every day. We will see how it goes!

July 18 at 6:24am

Walked 1 1/2 miles, ran 1 1/2 miles this morning! Beautiful morning. Not too hot. Sweated a lot. But a good, cleansing sweat. Felt amazing. Had a much needed 45 minutes of prayer. 3 more down…85 to go!

July 19 at 8:51am

Walked 3 miles this morning. It was a bit warmer and thicker than yesterday. But not too bad. Saw Sky and Devon and Ben while I was walking! Funny how often that happens. Listened to Mumford and Sons for most of the hour…soooo good. 3 more down…82 to go!

July 22 at 1:11pm

So the commitment I made this week has been way more challenging than I expected. Because of our schedule this week, my options have been set the alarm for 5am and walk/run before Chaz leaves for work (what I did on Mon&Tues), wait till our evening plans are over and my family is in bed and walk/run after 11pm (what I did on Wed&Thurs) or go at some point during the day pushing a 100+ pound stroller when it is 8,000 degrees outside and 100% humidity (what I did today). Sunday wasn’t bad, the kids and I went right after dinner. And tomorrow should be good, I’m gonna do 3-6 miles in the morning before it gets too hot (but not at 5am!). But yeah, this walk/run everyday commitment has flat worn me out! I’m glad I did it (always am) but next week I’m thinkin will be more like a 3-4 day commitment to give me a week to recover! 6 more down…76 to go!

July 26 at 9:07pm ‎

4 more down…72 to go. Will I hit 300 or will I not hit 300…that is the question…

July 30 at 5:42pm

Ran 2, walked 2 today! Last run I did was unsuccessful so I thought I was done with running but I guess not! Today’s walk/run felt great. 4 more down…68 to go!

Stay tuned for my next 300 Miles post to find out if I reach my goal of walking/running 300 miles before giving birth to this baby!

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my travel companions

The trip was a last minute one. And a first for me and the kids, seeing as we had never before left town with just the three (ok, technically four) of us in the van. But my hard working hubby needed to stay in Nashville and work and my mom, dad, youngest sister, two friends and grandmother (the crew we would be spending the weekend with) all left town on Thursday (a day before we were able to get away). And even though packing and cleaning and loading by myself was a bit overwhelming (mostly because my very pregnant body makes everything overwhelming these days), the six year old was a huge help and the four hour drive went so smoothly I would actually describe the time as enjoyable! I did miss my hubby those three days (and the kids missed their daddy!) but I am so thankful we decided to go! The time away was worth every ounce of extra energy it took to get out of town.

The three days were quiet, peaceful (other than some major struggles with my three year old. another post for another time.) and relaxing and took place surrounded by breathtaking views of The Great Smoky Mountains. And as it always does, getting out of the city gave me the time, the distance and the space to reflect and calibrate…

So, here are a few of my thoughts and reflections in no particular order:

1) You don’t have to fly to Hawaii or Europe to see spectacular sights, sights you may never have had the privilege of seeing before. There are more of them than you think, closer than you think and they are worth looking for!

2) My boy is, well, just that- a boy. And he needs time out of this house. Time to explore and get dirty and burn off his surplus of energy. Just because one of us is carrying around an extra 30 pounds and would prefer to lay on the couch all day, doesn’t mean we all feel that way…

3) It’s a whole lot easier for me to believe that all of this was created by a Creator than that it all began by chance or coincidence or a meteor.

4) I may have been born in the wrong century. We spent our three days in a cabin in the woods with no internet or television and, somewhat surprisingly, I did not miss either in the slightest. (Yes, I am aware of the irony of posting that statement on my blog. Technology does have it’s advantages.)

5) I packed less than I’ve ever packed for a trip and we still didn’t use everything I brought. Maybe someday I will get this whole simplifying/minimalism thing figured out…

6) My enormous belly gets me way more attention than I am comfortable with. I cannot remember the last time I showed up somewhere and didn’t have a stranger ask me if I was about to go into labor. I suppose that could have something to do with the fact that that portion of my torso now enters a room a good ten inches before the rest of me does…but does it have to get comments everywhere I go?

7) I love, love, love to walk and run and hike and I am so excited to be able to do those things to my heart’s content again in the very near future!!!

8 ) God blessed me with an incredibly loving and supportive family, something for which I am constantly and eternally grateful!

(This post would more appropriately be titled, “Life Lessons: What I Learned and What I Was Reminded of During Our Three Days in Gatlinburg and from Our Adventure in Cades Cove”. But that seemed a bit wordy for a blog post title…)

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Today I am glad that I…

got out of of bed at 6:15 a.m.

worked out with my Hubby.

texted with a close friend about how both of our days were going.

read a few chapters from James and 1st Peter in “The Message”.

got to hear Granite talk. (His vocabulary amazes me! So exciting.)

worked on a dinner calendar and sign up list for a friend who just had a baby.

read books to Meadow.

cleaned my kitchen.

ate a fairly healthy, balanced diet (no sweets today!) and drank lotsa water.

got to talk to my sweet Hubby who provides for our family so that I can stay home with our children.

played games with Meadow.

spent a few minutes working on my “Happiness Journal”.

 

And I am not so glad that I…

cannot escape this cold, dreary, awful weather.

got frustrated with Granite for fussing sooo much!

did not finish the laundry. Again. Sigh.

told Meadow “just five more minutes and I can play with you” about sixteen times in a row (probably fifteen times too many).

felt overwhelmed in the moments when two or three people were talking to me at the same time, needing my attention and/or my help.

spent too much time on Facebook. (Anyone else need to join Facebookaholics anonymous?)

had to listen to my son cry as I left his room at bedtime.

spent a little too much time in my head. I gotta get out of there more.

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my second born

By the time Granite was five days old, I knew my children were very, very different. This realization occured to me after a loooong, sleepless night spent with my second child. As the sun rose and I realized I had not slept at all I thought, “Oh man, what have I gotten myself into?” In fact, most of Granite’s first year, I am sad and slightly embarrassed to admit, was spent thinking that. As I dealt with his nursing problems, his eating problems, his digestive problems, his sleeping problems, his illnesses, his two hour screaming sessions, his defiance, his fussiness, his restlessness, his anger issues and our major communication problems, I could not help but think, “What have I gotten myself into!?” It was a rough, rough start to say the least.

Then spring rolled around (at this point Granite was somewhere around 12 months old). Things had gotten a little better, now that he was weaned and mobile and sleeping like a champ (twelve to fourteen hours every night, with a two to three hour nap every afternoon!). But things were not what I would describe as ‘good’. We still had huge communication problems; him trying to communicate and me not understanding and him getting furious that I didn’t know what he was wanting or saying. And me telling him what to do and him reacting in anger to any suggestions that did not one hundred percent agree with what he was already trying to do. And he could still be very fussy, restless and tempermental. So, our life had improved but there were still many, many moments of desperation, of unhappiness, of general overwhelmedness.

Until one afternoon when everything changed for me, and my life course, my perspective, my reality was changed forever.

We (Granite and I) were sitting in Ed Mikrut’s office. He is the “eastern/alternative/voodoo medicine man” that we have been seeing for well over a year now. (I’m not sure of his actual title, so forgive me, that may be a misrepresenation of him. Basically he encourages natural/alternative methods for pursuing wellness and dealing with physical and emotional illnesses and problems.)

Anyway, so we were sitting in Ed’s office again dealing with another sickness that Granite had picked up and come down with. Ed had finished testing Granite, given me what I needed to take care of Granite and I was about to gather our stuff to get ready to leave when Ed said, “Let me see him for a minute.” (note: Granite had been either fussing, crying, or screaming pretty much the entire session.) I handed the kid over, happy to not be holding a squirming, screaming child for a moment and watched as Granite slowly calmed down and got quiet in Ed’s lap. My jaw hit the floor (at least I think it did) and I stared in awe at my quieted child.

As this developed, I remember Ed said to me, “Something isn’t right here. Something is off with this little guy. I don’t think he’s just a fussy baby…I think there’s something going on inside him. Maybe if we figure out what it is then we can deal with it and make it better.”

After Ed made this statement he proceeded to ask me many, many questions; questions about my pregnancy, about Granite’s birth and about how I have dealt with and interacted with Granite, questions about Granite’s behavior at home, his interactions with other people and his reactions to different environments. And he listened. He listened as I answered his questions,  as I said things I’d never conciously thought about before, as I shared about all of the overwhelming emotions of the prior year. And he listened as I confessed that……I didn’t…really…like…my son.

And when I uttered these words, words I had never spoken out loud or even been willing to conciously admit, he waited. He waited as I cried. And cried. And cried. Cried because I was ashamed of my feelings towards my son and because I was sad that my son, who didn’t ask for any of this, had a mother who felt the way that I did.

And then he listened again as I, through my tears, realized and admitted that I wanted my second born to be like my first born- quiet, compliant, calm and easy going -and that when I had realized he was not, I had become so overwhelmed by, resentful towards and frightened about having to be his mother forever, I could barely function!

And then Ed spoke, or the Holy Spirit spoke through him, about taking it one day at a time, about embracing the challenge of being the mother of a spirited child, about me being the one to break the cycle of emotion between Granite and I, about Granite needing my acceptance and about what an incredible man Granite’s strength and spirit and passion, would one day make him. (and he said more but I cannot remember it all nor do it justice, though my memory is of him saying exactly what needed to be said, exactly what I needed to hear)

So I don’t know if it was the power of confessing these things that changed me, the words of wisdom that followed, or the combination of the two, but I left Ed’s office a different woman. And I swear, Granite left a different boy.

The moment I realized this difference was in the car on the way home. Granite was sitting in the seat behind me as I drove and I was lost in thought and still somewhat emotional. I pulled the mirror down to look at him, he was being quiet and I wanted to see what he was doing. And when I looked at my son through that mirror, I saw a different child. It was like I had on a new pair of glasses and, for the first time, was seeing things clearly. Instead of seeing a difficult, tempermental, anger filled wild child, I saw a precious boy who, while spirited and energetic, was just emotional because his mama did not accept him for who he was…and is. And my heart melted as I begged God (and Granite, though I’m not sure he really understood it) for forgiveness.

Our days have been different ever since. We still have our bad moments. And he will always have an energy and spirit that I don’t have or understand. But I have learned to appreciate him, enjoy him, even adore him. He brings so much life, so much hilarity, so much preciousness to our home and I thank God for the grace and wisdom that made it possible.

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