Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Four Days

This past weekend was lovely. I'd taken off Friday and Monday so it was like a mini-vacation. Much needed, and very enjoyable.

Thursday night we ate dinner on the deck, and then Ian had to head out to a meeting at the church. Sam and I sat together talking for over two hours about everything under the sun.

Friday morning I dropped off our van at the mechanic for some repairs. In order to have the ownership transferred, it has to be completely certified and there were a few issues our mechanic needed to repair before he can sign off on it. Mom followed me there, then brought me back to her house for a visit with her and my aunt. I told Ian I was only going to stay for half an hour, but it was more like an hour and half before I left.

Friday night was youth group for Ian, Sam and Jules. I played in the backyard with Jordan and Matt, splashing in their water table right along with them. After Mattie went to bed, Jordan and I sat on the front porch waiting for Ian and the big kids to come home.

Saturday afternoon Sam and I went over to my mom's for a visit, then I left to take Sam to a birthday party, returned to mom's for my nephew's birthday dinner. Shortly after, I left to get Sam and brought him back in time for my nephew to open his gifts. We stayed until about 9:30 and headed home.

When we got home it was close to ten, and I called Julie upstairs and told her I was kidnapping her and she didn't have time to change out of her pjs. We headed over to Dairy Queen and ate our ice cream on their patio, talking and laughing.

Sunday afternoon the girls and I drove to Orangeville to shop for a bit. I needed a few more clothing items for work and Julie is my personal stylist. We found several pieces that would work well with my existing wardrobe and didn't break the bank. The saleswoman was surprised to hear that Julie was only 11 and complimented her on her fashion sense. Julie was glowing.

Sunday night we all headed over to the park. Ian played basketball with Julie & Sam while I played with the Jordan and Matthew. After awhile I sat down with Matt and a woman on the next bench struck up a conversation. She seemed so tired, and when she spoke to me she was very harsh and had a tinge of anger to her voice. We were talking about how many kids we had when she said she had three and was a single mother, and had to be all things to each child. One of her children has Down Syndrome and blood cancer. And then she sighed, and it was like all the air came out of her body as she admitted how hard it has been and how tired she was. I had no idea what to say to comfort her, so I just listened. I think that was all she needed, was to have someone just to listen. I've been praying for her and her daughter, and I'm hoping I'll run into her again so if she'd like to, we can talk some more.

Monday we went to the African Lion Safari. It was a beautiful day for it. Not too hot, not too crowded. We started and ended with the baboons, and in between saw lions and zebras, bird and elephant shows, had a picnic, ate ice cream, Jordan rode a horse, all three kids played in the waterpark. We were exhausted coming home.

And today it was back to work. I was very heavy hearted leaving the house today and had a little cry on the way to work. I'm so thankful that our circumstances have changed so drastically, and that we have a steady income coming in. So thankful. Which is why I get so frustrated with myself for feeling sad that I'm not at home. I miss being with Ian all day. I love him so dearly, and as much as I love and miss my children while I'm at work, I miss Ian on a whole other level.

Today is a very special day in our house: Sam turned 13. I always cry on my children's birthdays. Always. Today was no exception. I kept thinking of his birth day, and how scared I was to become a mother. Responsible for someone who was so tiny and so dependent upon me. I looked into his face and saw a million ways I was afraid I would mess up this kid. I remember his first cry like it was just moments ago. How his first breath was like my own, because at that moment my life truly began. He breathed life into me in a way that I was completely unprepared for. I had purpose.

Every year on the children's birthdays I tell my children about their birth days. Julie can't hear hers enough. I thought maybe Sam was too old this year, but I was wrong.

Sam's birthday dinner request? Meat. So, Ian bbq'd burgers, wings and ribs. Mom and my aunt came for cake and to open gifts. Lovely times. At one point I smiled at Sam and said "so much love in this house" and he smiled at me and just melted me.

And our poor Willow... he was neutered today and had a large cyst removed from his tail. The vet said it was benign which was a huge relief for all of us to hear. He's moving slowly tonight but is doing ok.

While I feel as though these four days passed by in the blink of an eye, they were packed full with family time and for that I am grateful. Family ti


Sunday, July 29, 2012

More Rambling

I've been a very lazy blogger lately. Seems like there's always so much going on and I don't have a lot of energy left at the end of the day to blog.

I'm currently enjoying a four day weekend. Yesterday I visited with my mom and aunt for awhile and enjoyed a nap in the afternoon. I went to bed early and read until I fell asleep, missing the opening ceremonies for the Olympics. Apparently Canada has yet to win a medal.

Lots of drama surrounding Chick-Fil-A this week. It's crazy how out of control people are getting. I asked a sincere question on a friend's facebook wall the other day and someone posted in response to me, absolutely losing her mind. I wasn't looking for an argument - I simply wanted to know why it is considered hatred to disagree with the gay lifestyle. And like I said, she lost her mind. She ranted at me and insulted me, and she didn't even ask my position on the topic. I was so embarrassed for her. It's people like that who lose any sort of credibility in explaining their position. I feel sorry for people who have such anger in them. What hurt the most wasn't her hateful words to me, it was that my friend kept absolutely silent and let it happen. That really stung. I think people need to just settle down and stop pushing their opinions on to others, and be more concerned with loving each other.

I'm loving Sam's new haircut. And today he got contacts. He was at the optometrist for two and a half hours learning how to put them in and take them out. He looks like a different kid.

Julie and Jordan also had their hair cut this week. Mattie needs his cut but I don't know what to do with it. Brush cut? Spiky? I don't know.

My nephew turned 20 today and Sam and I went to my mom's for his birthday dinner. We got home just before ten, and then I kidnapped Julie and we went to Dairy Queen. It was a beautiful night so we ate our ice cream outside, talking and laughing together.

Our Jordan has been exceptionally chatty this week and makes us laugh with her antics. She cannot wait to go to school this fall, and talks constantly about all the friends she's going to have and the snacks she's going to bring.

Matthew can now say dada, cookie and mama. His little voice is so adorable.

Tomorrow I'm going shopping for some more work clothes and Monday we're all going to the African Lion Safari. So excited.

Ok, I'm done. 'Night all!


Monday, July 23, 2012

Nine Rambling Thoughts

1} In just over a week I will be the mother of a teenager as Sam turns 13 on the 31st. It continues to amaze me how quickly children grow up. I am so proud of who he is and the goals and morals he has. He's getting his hair cut tomorrow and I am beyond excited. He has that long skater hair and now he wants to get it shorter. I hope he goes through with it!

2} We bought Julie a cell phone this past weekend. I never in a million years thought I'd let her get one at this age, so imagine the shock I gave myself when I told Ian that I thought she should have one. In our old neighbourhood was very contained and had a little park in the middle. There were always tons of kids out playing and we felt Julie was safe. She had to check in regularly with us so that we knew she was ok. But that 30-minute check in wasn't working here in our new neighbourhood. She was running home to check in, then when she'd return to the park the kids she was playing with would be gone. She's so lonely here. The cell phone will enable her to check in without leaving where she is, and we know she's safe. Not to mention if anything happened the police would be able to track her through her cell.

3} Jordan makes us laugh every day. The big kids taught her the word "lame" and she uses it more than she ever should, but it makes me laugh. I know I shouldn't have but it just was so funny. So now it's in her regular vocabulary.

4} Matthew has four teeth and says "dada". All of the other children said "mama" first but they've all pulled together and taught him to say "dada". His voice is so precious.

5} I went to my mom's to visit with her and my aunt on Saturday morning. It always feels so good to be there with them. We talked and laughed and had egg salad sandwiches for lunch - my favourite.

6}  Sam stayed over at a friend's house on Saturday night and Ian and I took the girls and Mattie to a ribfest. They had a carnival, a little marketplace, beer tents and lots of rib stands. It was a lot of fun. Not sure I'd go again though - too many people.

7} Yesterday was the kind of Sunday I'd been longing for for awhile now. Slow and lazy, with a nap in the afternoon, grocery shopping and a visit from Ian's best friend Gary. Ian bbq'd ribs and wings and we ate outside on the deck.

8} I am completely overloaded at work with no let up in sight. We lost temp #4 on Thursday who left in a blaze of crazy and it doesn't look like we're going to be replacing her. I have a very full plate as it is, and was just handed more. All I can do is what I can do. I'm doing my best not to get stressed out.

9} Life feels good right now and we're in a good place. I'm happy. I'll suddenly feel a rush of happiness and well being, followed by thankfulness. It was so hard getting to this point, but it's all worth it now. God is so loving.

Ok that's it. I'm off to sleep!


Friday, July 20, 2012

Book Review: I Am Second

Countless stories. One incredible ending.

A major league baseball player. a Tennessee pastor. A reality TV star. a single mom. A multi-platinum rocker.

What do these people have in common?

They’ve all hit bottom.

And none of them stayed there.

Famous or unfamiliar, these are the stories of real people who reached the end of their strength, the end of their control, and found the most surprising truths.

It taught them not to rely on self or substance but to lean on the only completely reliable source of love, hope, and freedom: the God who created them. Shocking in their honesty, inspiring in their courage, these testimonies are critical reminders that no one is too far from God to find him.

Join these and thousands more who have discovered the lifechanging power in putting God first and proclaiming, “I am Second.”

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~
I was very touched by the stories of redeemed lives in this book.

People in the deepest, darkest pits, who realized that their true path to freedom was to realize that God is first, and they are second.

While this book was a very quick and easy read, you'll find that several of the stories will stay with you long after you've finished.

I love hearing what God is doing in people's lives. How He can change a person's circumstance so completely that there is no doubt that it was Him. I love hearing how someone who was completely broken, turned their eyes towards Jesus and were completely transformed. This book is full of stories of like that.

I would recommend this book to anyone who feels they are too far gone to be rescued, or anyone who doubts what God can do, and the love He has for each of us. No matter where we are, or what we've done.

Book has been provided courtesy of Thomas Nelson and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Thomas Nelson.

5QF ~ July 19

As I mentioned yesterday, Mama M is entrusting me with her Five Question Friday blog hop today while she's on vacation. She's off fishing and relaxing, and enjoying campfires with her family. But most of all she's enjoying the bugs. Rules for 5QF: Copy and paste the following questions to your blog post, answer them, then watch for the linky post to appear Friday morning and LINK UP!

Mama M would love to link you in a future 5QF, so head on over to her community or watch for her Thursday afternoon shout outs for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos her and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

Special thanks to this week's contributors: Maranda (@MarandaLamping) at Maranda Lamping, Mama M (@5crookedhalos) at My Little Life, Melissa (@Melissa_M80, at My Scrumptious Treats, brand new mama Holly (@ByGollyMsHolly) at Life In HD and Gasfamily (@gasfamily) at TheGasFamily.

If you haven't met these lovely women yet then make a point of introducing yourself! They are kind, loving, and encouraging ladies and I'm thankful for each one of them.

And the questions are:

1} What do you call them- flip flops, sandals, thongs, or slippers?

Flip flops.

Sandals are those shoes that hook to your feet with straps, thongs are underwear and slippers are worn in the house.

2} Are you a "my kids can do no wrong" kind of mom or a "Johnny punched you? Well what did you do to him first?!" kind of mom?

I'd like to say I fall somewhere in the middle, but the truth is, if someone hurts my kid I'm all Mama Bear until I get the whole story.
3} Would you confront a good friend that looked/looks down on your husband/significant other?

Oh you'd better believe I would. I'd ask them outright why they were treating my husband like that and let them know I won't tolerate them treating him poorly. And if I found out they were badmouthing him behind my back? I'd confront them and then be done with them until they apologized to him. That's my best friend they'd be talking about. Oh hell no.
4} Biggest pet peeve?

I hate hearing people eat. I hate everything about it. The clinking of the silverware against the dish, the chewing, the swallowing... ugh. I'm aware I do the same, but it's just music to me. Everyone else...? Pet peeve!
5} What's your favorite take out meal?

Pizza Hut pizza. I haven't had it in years but I love it. And I love chinese take-out. Yum.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ *~ ~*~

Ok, that's a wrap! Make sure you link up and if you get the chance, hop around and check out some of the other blogs that have linked up and leave them some love. It's a great way to meet your fellow bloggers and make some new friends.

Happy Friday everyone!


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Five Question Friday Preview!

Welcome to the Five Question Friday preview!!

I'm very excited to be hosting this week's Five Question Friday for Mama M at My Little Life, while she and her sweet family enjoy themselves on their summer vacation.
Rules for 5QF: Copy and paste the following questions to your blog post, answer them, then watch for the linky post to appear Friday morning and LINK UP!

Mama M would love to link you in a future 5QF, so head on over to her community or watch for her Thursday afternoon shout outs for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos her and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

Special thanks to this week's contributors: Maranda (@MarandaLamping) at Maranda Lamping, Mama M (@5crookedhalos) at My Little Life, Melissa (@Melissa_M80, at My Scrumptious Treats, brand new mama Holly (@ByGollyMsHolly) at Life In HD and Gasfamily (@gasfamily) at TheGasFamily.

If you haven't met these lovely women yet then make a point of introducing yourself! They are kind, loving, and encouraging ladies and I'm thankful for each one of them.

**I'm sorry you can't cut & paste the questions - I have a right click disable feature on my blog to protect the content and pictures from being stolen. I apologize for the inconvenience.

And the questions are:

1} What do you call them- flip flops, sandals, thongs, or slippers?

2} Are you a "my kids can do no wrong" kind of mom or a "Johnny punched you? Well what did you do to him first?!" kind of mom?

3} Would you confront a good friend that looked/looks down on your husband/significant other?

4} Biggest pet peeve?

5} What's your favorite take out meal?

Remember, this is just a preview and the real deal is tomorrow. In the meantime, head on over to the blogs of the people who provided this week's questions. They're a great group of ladies!

See you tomorrow!


Monday, July 16, 2012

Rough Day

Today was a bit of a rough day.

I went to bed too late last night and I was really dragging this morning. I ended up leaving the house about five minutes behind schedule and arrived at the office a few minutes late. I hate that. Then my computer was giving me problems and it was a full half hour before I could fully log on and start working.


I spent over two hours just answering my email. It just kept coming in, more requests for back up, more problems, my Problem Pile getting bigger and bigger. I felt really overwhelmed and ended up making a few dumb mistakes. Fixable ones, but still. I was really frustrated with myself.

I realized that I felt nervous. It was my first day as an employee of the company and my negative self talk had me convinced that I was going to let them down and make them regret hiring me.

I'm grateful for this job. There is absolutely no question about that. But it feels weird to be locked into a company after being a free-agent temp for the last five years. And I really, really, miss being a stay at home mom. Since this is where God has placed me - for however long that may be - I'm choosing to bloom where I'm planted.

Saturday was so much fun. We took the children to St. Jacobs for the day and wandered around the marketplace like we had all the time in the world. Jordan rode a pony for the first time ever and she loved it. I bought tons of strawberries for $5. It was hot and crowded but we didn't care. It just felt so good to be together.

Saturday I received the sweetest blessing in the mail. I received a few dozen ADORABLY decorated sugar cookies from someone I've never met. A wonderful friend of mine nominated me for Desserts For the Deserving, a contest that a baking blog was hosting. These cookies are so cute!


I still can't get over the detail on these cookies. And the incredibly careful way they were packaged. This was completely unexpected and so wonderful. Jordan calls them "picture cookies".

Sunday was church and I was able to connect with a couple of ladies there that I don't get much of a chance to talk with normally. One really shared what was going on with her, and I was really thankful for that because now I can be more intentional about how I pray for her.

Afterwards I went to my mom's house to visit with her and my aunt. It's been much too long since I've been over there and it felt really good. Lots of laughing, so much love.

Tonight we ate dinner outside on the deck - bbq'd chicken and baked potatoes, with "picture cookies" for dessert. We've lived here for 16 days now and have yet to turn on the oven! We love bbq!

So, now that I'm going to be staying at this company for awhile, I'm going to need to buy a couple more outfits. I despise clothes shopping but it's necessary. I take Julie with me because she's my style consultant and never lets me down. Or look like an idiot.

I'm off to bed. I need to be more rested for the onslaught tomorrow, and I'm hoping to get there earlier. Hopefully tomorrow will go a little easier on me ;-)


Friday, July 13, 2012

5QF ~ July 13

Happy Friday!

I'm looking forward to spending time with my sweet family this weekend. Tomorrow we're going to St. Jacobs to shop and sightsee. It's mennonite country and just so lovely. We haven't been there since Jordan was a baby and I've been longing to go back.

I'm pretty tired so I'm going to get to Mama M's Five Question Friday blog hop!

1. What's your view on men wearing sandals (yay or nay)?

I don't care if some dude wears sandals just as long as he isn't wearing socks at the same time. I truly don't understand the midset of men that wear socks and sandals together. Do they not have someone in their lives that are willing to tell them not to this?? Doesn't anyone love them enough to tell them the truth??

I don't have an issue with flip flops either as long as your toe nails aren't hanging over the edge.


2. What song do you love but are embarrassed to admit?

Starship by Nicki Minaj. I really can't stand her and her outlandishness, but I just love this song. She also has another one that I think is called Sound The Alarm and I love that one too... I sing along to both like I'm all that and a bag of chips, not some 40-something, mini-van driving, mother of four...

3. What summer camp should they make for moms?

Camp NapALot. Bedtime would be 9pm and we'd wake up at 10am with breakfast in bed. Naptime would be from 1-4. Inbetween we'd get pedicures and have our hair done and we'd laugh and laugh.
4. What is the most romantic song? (Not necessarily your favorite or your wedding song...)

This Woman's Work. Maxwell sings it and I think Kate Bush does as well.
5. Do you have an embarrassing pregnancy story?
Too many to mention! I've been pregnant a few times so I'm sure there's a lot of material there I just can't think of anything specific to tell you. My entire labour with Matthew was embarassing because all my mental issues reared up and I shared them freely with everyone.
Ok that's it! Have a great weekend!

Head on over to Mama M's blog My Little Life to join in on the fun!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Lately I'm just so full of happy that I don't know what to do with it all.

We made it.

I stare at those three words and my eyes fill with tears.

We have had such a difficult year and a half. I haven't shared a fraction of how hard it has been because I didn't want to complain and be ungrateful for what we did have.

But it was hard. Heartbreaking. Scary. Exhausting. I felt forgotten and unloved by God. My gratitude journal went from things I was thankful for, to prayers from the bottom of my terrified and broken heart. I held on to my faith by my fingertips, begging God to show me He was there.

And here we are on the other side.

We made it.

I am amazed by how God has changed our circumstances. He didn't just answer my prayers. He ANSWERED MY PRAYERS. Exceeded them. He is who He says He is, and He loves just as He says He loves.

Oh, so full of happy. He is good. He is good.

How do I thank you for the support you have given me during this season? How do I express to you how deeply your words have impacted me? How do I make you understand how thankful I am for the prayers you said on our behalf when I was too broken to pray?

Thank you isn't enough. It's not. But it's all I have.

Thank you, sweet friends.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012


I'm alive!

These past couple of weeks have been so insanely busy but they're behind us now, and we are slowly unpacking and settling into our new home. It feels different here. Better. Happier. We are hopeful again.

I can't believe that just a month ago we listed our house and we're already in a new one. I am reminded once again that no matter how dark things seem to be, God is always with me and always at work for me. So thankful for that.

In other news, I've been temping at my placement for just over ten weeks now, and yesterday they presented me with an offer of full time employment. The salary is better than I had hoped for, and they've met me on a few points I came back to them on. I will finish out the week with the agency and then go on the company's payroll on Monday. I have mixed feelings about this. I miss being a stay at home mom more than I could ever say, but I am thankful for this opportunity.

Our van broke down last Thursday and we had to get a rental car: a Toyota Yaris. I felt like I was driving a go cart! We returned it this morning and I was sad to see it go. I'd grown a little attached to it.

I feel as though I have tons to talk about, but my eyes are heavy and I'm very sleepy. Before long I won't be making much sense!

I'll be back soon...


Monday, July 02, 2012

Settling In

Just a quick update tonight.

We are in our new home, and happier than we ever thought we could be. This was a really good step to take and our hearts are at peace.

On Saturday our sweet pastor and his lovely wife (one of my favourite friends!) came over to see the house and for our pastor to bless it. We were so thankful.

The movers came on Friday and were done in under two hours. We still have a few things left at the old house to bring over, and then the final clean before we hand over the keys. What a ride this has been, but we know that God has His hands in this and continues to bring everything together for us.

My favourite aunt arrived today and will be spending July at my mom's. We all love when she visits. I've loved being at home these last five days, but I'm back to work tomorrow. Thankful that I was able to get this time off.

I gave into the hype and picked up a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey. Oh my word, that book is something else.

That's it for now. I'll blog again as soon as I can. So much to talk about :-)