Friday, December 28, 2012

5QF ~ December 28, 2012

Oh my word.

I was too lazy to blog my Five Question Friday so I decided to vlog it instead.

Sweet mercy... what an effort! First I had to try to remember my youtube password, then I had to create a new account because I couldn't find my password, upload it, etc.... it's been a two day journey.

But... here it is. In all it's awfulness.

My face looks so fat.



After the lengths I went to just to get this video on this blog... I no longer care about my fat face!

So, without further ado... here is my first vlog courtesy of my ipad.

Have a great weekend, peeps.


Sunday, December 23, 2012


Happy Christmas Eve Eve!!

So excited.

We still have a ton of wrapping to do. I love wrapping.

I spent yesterday and today at my mom's house, hanging out and doing food preparation for tomorrow and Christmas Day.

My sister arrived home for Christmas today.

Last week Sam got his ear pierced for the third time because he keeps letting the hole close. He wants both ears done eventually because "girls think guys with pierced ears are hot". The next day at school some girl told him he looked sexy. Sweet mercy.

I have been trying new foods lately. This week it was chicken souvlaki (however you spell it) and a cranberry. Very tasty. Last month it was a crab cake. That just about killed me. My throat closed over and was all itchy. I went to the pharmacy and got some benadryl and survived. In case you haven't noticed. All my life I was allergy free and now... crab cakes.

Ian and I are so overdue for a date. We were going to go out last night but ended up sitting in our living room by the light of the Christmas tree, just talking about life and our faith, and our hopes and dreams.

I've been loving these last few days at home with the children. Yesterday we tried a craft I saw on Pinterest that I figured I could handle. I bought four plain white mugs at the dollar store and pulled out my sharpies, and the kids and I each decorated a mug. Then I baked them at 400 for 40 minutes. The idea is that the marker becomes permanent on the mug and then can be used as a regular mug. Well let me tell you that wasn't what happened. The head faded what we wrote on the mugs and you can still wipe off the writing. So, we'll use them as pen holders or something.

We've renewed our lease until January 2014 which has brought me great relief. Our original lease was until the end of January 2013, and I was feeling very unsettled and worrying if we'd have to move again so soon. I'm very happy to have another summer and Christmas here.

I didn't send out any Christmas cards this year. Again. I had a list made up, but things were just so busy and I never got around to writing them out and mailing them. Maybe I'll send out Happy New Year cards. Who am I kidding, I'm not doing that.

Tomorrow night I'm going to mass with my mom. I haven't been to Christmas Eve mass in several years so this will be really nice. I was a semi-practicing Catholic until I was 30 then we started attending an awesome Baptist church about 10 years ago. Every so often I long for the traditions and reverence of the Catholic church.

I have a gross cough and a sniffly nose. This nonsense has been going on now for about two weeks. I'm worried it will turn into bronchitis. I had it back in the spring and it went on for seven weeks before I was completely healthy again. I don't have time to be sick!

Last week Julie got her arm caught in the car door. I don't know if I can even explain how it happened. She opened her door and leaned against the door jam thing as she got out, at the same time that Sam opened his door, which kind of crushed her elbow. Cue the screaming and tears. It was all swollen and she couldn't move it so we went to the ER in case it was broken. It wasn't and we were on our way about 2.5 hrs later. She wore her arm in a sling for a couple of days, and except for some bruising she's ok now.

We took the kids to see Santa last week. All four were in the picture together which just makes me laugh. The older two, of course, know the truth about Santa, but they're so committed to keeping the magic of Christmas alive for the little ones.

I'm sure there's more to talk about but I'm pretty tired. I need to answer some email and then head to bed. Tomorrow will be a long and exciting day for the children.

Catch ya next time!


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Forgot To Tell You ...

Oooh look at me... blogging two nights in a row.

I feel wild now.

I forgot to tell you about the cool thing that happened yesterday. Every morning I stop at the Tim Horton's drive thru to get a large steeped tea to take to the office. The woman in the box that takes my order recognizes me by my order and will comment that I'm early that day or running behind and better hurry. They notice if I've missed a day and will comment on it. Very sweet ladies. Often I will pay for the person behind me because it makes me feel so good to bless someone else.


Yesterday I was driving up to the drive thru lane and I saw a woman waiting to get in line but the car in front of me wouldn't let her in even though she was there first. I held back and gestured for her to go ahead of me and she waved and waved at me. So I waved and waved back because I'm all about making friends wherever I am. When it was my turn I placed my order and when I got to the window they told me that the lady ahead of me had paid for my tea.


What a sweet blessing to start my week.

Julie's final dance class was tonight and we all went to watch the class perform what they've learned. At one point the instructor had the girls choose someone from their family to teach them the steps. Julie went for Sam first but he wasn't having any of that, so she asked Ian. It was so sweet to see the pride and love on her face as she held his arm while she waited her turn.

Afterwards we went to Baskin Robbins for ice cream to celebrate. There was a couple sitting at the next table and the woman thought it was the coolest thing ever that we both had a Jordan and a Matthew. She said she also had a Bentley. We refrained from telling her that we did as well, only our Bentley is a guinea pig.

My course homework is done, my little peeps are all in bed, and I'm heading there now too. My throat is hurting and I've started sniffling and sneezing. Hopefully I'll wake up well rested for tomorrow because Wednesdays are my longest days. I leave the house when it's dark, before everyone wakes up, and I'm home after the children are asleep. Last Wednesday I watched the sun rise on my way to work, watched the sun set out of my office window, and stood outside watching the stars before I came in for the night.

Blessings... they're everywhere.

Goodnight!   :o)


Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Chatter

14 days until Christmas!


We have most of the children's gifts bought but will likely pick up a couple things here and there to make sure everything is pretty even between the children. I am obsessed with making sure everyone is equal.

We're planning to bring the Littles to see Santa on Thursday night. They won't go and sit with him on their own, so I'm hoping that Sam and Julie will each take one Little and sit with them, and then I'll have a Santa picture with all of my sweeties!

We're doing a Secret Santa gift exchange at the office next week, and we each drew names to see who we'd be buying for. I've been trying to get to know my co-workers over the last seven months but they're pretty private people! I drew the name of the only guy in our department and I was completely lost as to what to buy for him. Then someone put up a sheet of paper with Christmas Wish List written on it, and everyone has been writing down what they want. Perfection! Seems like everyone wants Walmart or Shoppers Drug Mart gift certificates. Easy peasy.

I did a little online shopping. Unsupervised online shopping. I felt all...tingly. I'm expecting something to arrive this week and I don't think I'll be able to breathe until it arrives. So excited.

I have a few vacation days that I need to use up before the end of the month, so I'm taking this Friday and Monday off. I think I'll start wrapping the gifts on Friday while the children are in school. Then they'll come home to gifts under the tree and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.

In other news...

I got my hair done last week and it looks fabulous. Someone actually stopped me to tell me how great my hair looked and asked who my stylist was. I was happy to refer her because I have THE BEST stylist on the planet.

My Mama had cataract surgery last week and is feeling great one week later. It was such a quick procedure and everyone was so kind to her. All except one nurse who had these long, yellow, dirty fingernails and poked my mother in her eye while she was putting drops in. She was wiping her nose and not washing her hands afterwards... so gross. She was rude to my mom, and it was a miracle I held my tongue let me tell you. It wasn't until she was in the post-op area that I mentioned to her nurse about the previous nurse's treatment. She called someone over for me to talk with, and it wasn't until after she asked me to put something in writing and gave me her email address, that I realized we went to high school together. I hadn't seen her in 20 something years and the first thing I do when I see her again is to complain! Sweet mercy.

Tonight I stopped to do a bit of Christmas shopping/browsing and heard someone call my name in the parking lot. It was my childhood friend who I met when we were six years old. Over the years we've lost each other and found each other again, lost and found... We stood there talking for almost a half hour out in the cold but it was so worth it.

Lots going on this week. Julie's final dance class is tomorrow night so we're all going to watch her. Wednesday night is my last night of Freedom Session (the course through my church), and we'll start the next book next month. I'll be thankful for the upcoming break in classes/courses/appointments/commitments over the holidays to just enjoy being with my peeps.

Hopefully sometime soon I can write about my experience with Freedom Session so far, and how I can feel myself changing inside. I'm learning excellent tools to change my ways of thinking and my behaviour in some areas. As I sit here and write tonight, I have so many things on my mind that cause me to feel anxious, yet there is a growing sense of peace in me. We'll talk about that as soon as I can wrap my head around it better.

Tomorrow I need to get up and out to the office extra early so I'm going to wrap this up and get to bed.


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Lots and Lots of Random Things

This past week has been so busy and my mind feels so cluttered that I often feel hyped up and frantic. It's hard to fall asleep at night and then I wake up exhausted in the morning. So much going on here and I'm looking forward to a four day weekend to relax with my people.

We put up our Christmas tree last weekend and the children did a wonderful job of decorating it. It amazes me how every year they make it more beautiful than the last. Each ornament holds such special meaning and memories. The outside of our house is decorated as well and I love it. Sometimes I go out and stand on the driveway just to look at the front of the house because it looks so pretty.

We've been in this house for five months now and we really love being here. The children will finish out the school year at their current school, then next Fall Sam is off to high school and the girls will transfer to the school in our area. Julie really wants to transfer over the Christmas break but I think it would be best to finish the year.

I just finished a lovely cup of tea and I'm in my new pjs I got for free with my $25 coupon my favourite store sent to me. I'd like to go to bed but my room stinks of nail polish because Julie wanted me to do her nails tonight. Usually that's our Sunday thing, but she needed some mom time tonight and I was happy to oblige. We've all been going at quite a fast pace this past week so I wasn't about to miss the opportunity to slow down with her.

This Saturday night we're going to a Christmas party. I offered to bring cake balls and Ian and Sam are salivating already. Apparently it's been a year since I last made them!! That can't be true... can it??

Have I mentioned my total addiction to the tv show Flashpoint? GAH. I went months without watching television and then I saw one episode and I was hooked. My beloved Netflix and I have a standing date every night and I watch a couple of episodes before bed. I'm a couple of episodes into season 2, and I'm watching the current season as well. I can't get enough. I think I'd make an awesome sniper. Except I wouldn't shoot people dead like they do on this show. I'd just shoot their shoulder or leg or something, because in my mind... I'd be an exceptional marksman. Or I could be a hostage negotiator. I'd love that job for real.

It snowed the other day and it stayed on the ground. People were slowing down and slipping like crazy. It was all melted by this morning, thank goodness. I'd already had enough of it. I don't own boots because I don't like how they're so heavy on my feet. I have a sad suspicion that I'll have to buy a pair this year.

We're ahead of the game with our Christmas shopping for the children. Ian has done most of it, but we were able to do some together last weekend. As usual, I am at a complete loss as to what to give Ian. I need him to be specific and just tell me exactly what to get. I could just give him money... ew, that's so tacky right?

I have five vacation days I have to use up before the end of December, so I've planned it so I have a couple of four day weekends. I'm going to have to give some serious thought to this job in the new year. I'm not sure how much longer I can handle the stress of it. My anxiety attacks are back in full force and while I have a lot of coping strategies and tricks to get through them, often times I can't and I have to take something to help me out. I hate that, but I know it isn't going to be like this forever.

I'm getting my hair done on Saturday morning. Thank goodness! I look like a hot mess. My appointment is at 8:30 in the morning and it means I'll have to leave the house before 8am but that's fine by me. Early in, early out.

I wonder if there is a 12 step program for Essie addicts. Seriously... I have about 9 bottles at this point, and a list in my head of the ones I can't seem to find anywhere. I need to stop this insanity. It's nail polish!

Alright, enough rambling. I need to get to bed.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Book Review: Grace ~ More Than We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine



We talk as though we understand the term. The bank gives us a grace period. The seedy politician falls from grace. Musicians speak of a grace note. We describe an actress as gracious, a dancer as graceful. We use the word for hospitals, baby girls, kings, and premeal prayers. We talk as though we know what grace means.

But do we really understand it? Have we settled for wimpy grace? It politely occupies a phrase in a hymn, fits nicely on a church sign. Never causes trouble or demands a response. When asked, “Do you believe in grace?” who could say no?

Max Lucado asks a deeper question: Have you been changed by grace? Shaped by grace? Strengthened by grace? Emboldened by grace? Softened by grace? Snatched by the nape of your neck and shaken to your senses by grace?

God’s grace has a drenching about it. A wildness about it. A white-water, riptide, turn-you-upside-downness about it.

Grace comes after you. It rewires you. From insecure to God secure. From regret riddled to better-because-of-it. From afraid to die to ready to fly.

Grace is the voice that calls us to change and then gives us the power to pull it off.

Let’s make certain grace gets you.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

All of my life I have struggled to understand the concept of God's grace. People would speak of it, and I would nod and smile as if I understood the depths of it. But I didn't. Not really.

I was really looking forward to reading this because I've read several of Max Lucado's books, and he has such an easy, genuine style of writing. That sitting across the table over a cup of tea style that I love so much. It reaches me, and I understand.

Nothing drove home the idea of grace harder than the image of Jesus washing his disciples feet. Even Judas' feet. Max talks about the grossness of feet, and how Jesus stooped to wash the dirt and grime off the feet of everyone who would eventually end up abandoning him. The line that really hit me was this: "If He washes the feet of His Judas, you will have to wash the feet of yours."


Max talks about how grace has happened to each of us. How our feet are soaked with His grace. He has washed the filth from our lives.


At the end of the book there is a reader's guide with questions for each chapter, a grace reading, scripture review and prayer, making this an excellent Bible study choice.

I would definitely, definitely recommend this book to anyone who was curious about, or struggling to understand the depths of God's grace.

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

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


Thursday, November 22, 2012


I'm not going to lie... I'm totally jealous that it's the American Thanksgiving today.

Happy Thanksgiving, by the way. You know, if you're American and all.

Does Australia have a Thanksgiving?

I don't know.

But now I need to find out.

I'm so happy that I have three whole days with my sweet family this weekend. Ian has an appointment tomorrow so I took the day off to be with the children. I'm going to drive the three older ones to school, then go to my mother's for breakfast and to visit for the morning. It's her birthday tomorrow.

Ian bought Matthew some new pjs today. So cute. I call them grandpa jammies. You know what those are, right? The button shirt and pants. Oh my word he looks so adorable. When I came home from work I went into the kitchen to see him and he was wearing a "My Mom Rocks" t-shirt. LOVE!

Last night Sam and I went to check out another high school. We're all hoping he gets accepted into the arts program at the other school, but just in case he doesn't he needs a plan b. This school was so huge. Three stories and just BIG. The uniforms were nice and there are tons of clubs and sports to join. Sam couldn't possibly have been less interested. His hopes are all pinned on the arts school.

Oh boy.

Jordan has been doing this blinky thing that is freaking me out. I don't know if she's stressed or tired or her eyes or dry or what. But I'm this close to taking her to the doctor even if he just tells me to chill out.

I finally broke down and bought an ice scraper for my car. It's pink. There have been several mornings recently where there has been frost on the windows and I had to scrape it off with a credit card.

Don't judge.

I'm in complete denial that winter is coming. I hate winter.

I don't even want to talk about it.

And on that note... I'm going to bed.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012


If I had to describe how I am feeling these days, that's the word that comes to mind first.


My heart is unsettled and I just feel... off.

Life feels backwards. I desperately want to be at home with the children again. I miss changing diapers and cooking and making peanut butter sandwiches and driving the children to school. I know that Ian longs to be back in the workforce, creating and presenting and leading.

My job is very stressful and the ever increasing pressure to produce is so intense. I've never had to work under conditions like these before and I'm really struggling. It's affecting me emotionally and physically and that frustrates me. I'm no longer that career driven woman I was before I had children. If I was, this job is it. There is a lot of potential with this position. But my priorities are so different now.

I feel disconnected from my children. I'm tired by the end of the night and there isn't much of anything left for Ian. That's not fair to him. I never was any good at balancing work life and home life.

I don't understand why things are the way they are. I do believe that God's plans are better than ours, I do. I just don't get it. I don't know what it is we need to do or how we need to pray for Him to change things. I don't know how to be settled with the way things are. I just tell Him that I'm sad and how much I miss my old life, and trust that He knows the why of things.

I know I sound whiny, and I'm sure I'm coming across as ungrateful. I'm sorry. I'm just so tired and so sad, and I just needed somewhere to let it out.

** I've turned off the comments to this post because I don't want anyone to feel as though they have to say something. I just needed to whine a bit.**


Friday, November 16, 2012

November 16 ~ 5QF

I am looking forward to a weekend of doing nothing. Sleeping in, lazing about, napping in the afternoon....
My reality will be more like helping to organize the garage, rearranging some furniture to make room for our Christmas tree, laundry, and church.
But holding out hope for a nap...
This week my mom and I went out for dinner to celebrate Diwali as we do each year. Of course, we aren't celebrating Diwali as much as we're just enjoying a reason to go out for dinner together.
Wednesday was the Open House at the high school Sam is desperately wanting to attend. I have my course every Wednesday, so my mom came to watch Julie and the little ones, while  Ian and Sam headed over to the school. Only 22 students are accepted into the media program, and Sam is longing to be one of them.
I can't believe that we're discussing high schools already. Wasn't he a baby just last week...?
Ok. I can't sit here chatting you up any longer - I need to get my butt to work!

Welcome to Five Question Friday!!

As I mentioned yesterday, I am hosting this week's Five Question Friday for Mama M at My Little Life, while she and her darling daughter Belle enjoy themselves at Disney World.

Rules for 5QF:  Copy and paste the following questions to your blog post, LINK UP with the linky thinky at the bottom of this post! Mama M would love to link to 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: MrsKarenC (@mrs_karenC) at Dinosaur Superhero Mommy, Maranda (@MarandaLamping) at Maranda Lamping, Brooke (@HallBro) who doesn't have a blog it seems. (Get on that, Brooke!), Kristina (@Kristinascackle) at Kristina's Cackles and Ashley (@ashleywbeck) at The Court of Three Sisters.

Lovely women.

Make sure you check them out!

On to the questions!

1} What snack/drinks do you eat at the movies?

I like popcorn or plain M&Ms. I'll bring my own diet pepsi with me because I can't stand the concession stand prices. I have this one friend that CANNOT STAND it when I pop the tab on my can. She thinks I'm the cheapest person ever.

2} What's one food you refuse to ever try?

Oysters. They sound gross and they look gross and I'm just betting they taste gross too.

3} What's your favourite nail polish color?

I love Expresso by Sally Hansen. I've recently discovered Essie and the rainbow of beautiful colours, but I haven't chosen a favourite Essie yet. I have been really enjoying the darker colours but Ian can't stand them. I'm wearing something orangey-pinky and he likes that.

Next week it's grey... prepare yourself Ian.

4} What is your favourite Thanksgiving tradition?

We just had our Thanksgiving last month and I'm jealous that the US is about to have theirs. We don't have any particular traditions. Just a beautifully cooked bird and precious time around the table together.

5} What are your least favorite words in the English language?

My #1 least favourite word is "share". I have serious sharing issues. I also don't like "meal" or "slacks".

That's a wrap for this week! Don't forget to link up below!

Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!


Thursday, November 15, 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 darling daughter Belle enjoy themselves at Disney World.

Totally jealous.

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: MrsKarenC (@mrs_karenC) at Dinosaur Superhero Mommy, Maranda (@MarandaLamping) at Maranda Lamping, Brooke (@HallBro) who doesn't have a blog it seems. (Get on that, Brooke!), Kristina (@Kristinascackle) at Kristina's Cackles and Ashley @ashleywbeck at The Court of Three Sisters.

Lovely women. Make sure you check them out!

This week's questions are....

1} What snack/drinks do you eat at the movies?

2} What's one food you refuse to ever try?

3} What's your favourite nail polish color?

4} What is your favourite thanksgiving tradition?

5} What are your least favorite words in the English language?

Remember, this is just a preview and the real deal is tomorrow.

See you then!


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Essie... I Love You

I love freshly polished nails.

Every Sunday night, after the girls have their baths, we get together and I do their nails.

Julie always comes prepared with the colour she's chosen. Jordan is another story and choosing her colour can take awhile.

It's sweet girl-time together that the three of us have come to look forward to at the end of each weekend.

Once their nails are dry and they've been tucked into bed, I do my own while watching Revenge on tv.

Recently I discovered Essie nail polish.

I love it.

Every shade of every colour you can imagine. And they all have such cute names.

This one?

This one is called Bahama Mama.

I. Love. It.

Ian? Not so much. He prefers when I use bright colours, not "emo or goth" colours like this. But he won't come out and say he doesn't like it. He'll just try to avoid looking at my hands altogether.

I asked my mom what she thought:

Me: What do you think of my nail polish?
Mom: I think you should have left it in the bottle.
Me: I love it! It was half price.
Mom: You still paid too much for it.

Dang, Mama. Don't hold back now...

Seriously's crazy expensive polish.

Recently I was at the right place at the right time and scored three bottles for 50% off.

Someone suggested I check out eBay where they sell them in lots for cheap.

I'm not allowed to use eBay without spousal supervision due to The Incident. But we don't need to talk about that. It's in the past. So now I have to come up with an explanation as to why I need to buy nail polish in bulk....

Oh Essie... I love you...


Thursday, November 08, 2012

Rambling Thoughts

Hello, hello.

I'm still alive, just very busy.

And now... I'm about to be very rambly. Which isn't even a word.

Ian and I are going to a surprise party for an old friend of his this weekend. I'll have to practice my small talk so I don't sound like a moron.

I went to a Ladies Game Night at the church recently. I don't like to play games but I'm lonely and need to socialize more. I met a couple of new ladies and visited with some sweet friends I haven't seen in awhile. There's a Victorian Tea coming up later this month. I don't know what that's all about but I'll go.

So many of my friends are having babies lately, or so it seems. Oh I love a new little squishy baby. I'm done though. Never thought I'd be able to truthfully say that, but I am.

I have recently discovered the tv show Flashpoint and I love it. I don't know where I've been all this time, but this show is amazing and it's filmed right here in Toronto.

I wish it was my birthday so I could buy myself a birthday cake. I love cake.

I'm longing for a road trip.

My Mattie has had a cold for a week now. He seems to get better and then crashes again. He sees the doctor tomorrow.

I had the best visit with my mom tonight. We talked for hours and it felt so good to be with her. It's been awhile.

The biggest thrill of my life lately has been the new laundry detergent Ian switched to. It's Arm & Hammer something or other and it's HEAVENLY. I am constantly smelling my clothes and I'm sure I look like a weirdo but I can't help myself. (I just did it now)

I'm still thinking about getting a tattoo. I haven't decided what I want though, or where I'd put it. Ian doesn't like tattoos though, so I probably won't get one.

I miss being a redhead.

I wish I could sleep for three days straight. I'm always so tired.

I wish I could iron something. Ironing really relaxes me.

Christmas is next month. Can you believe that? We're all very excited to decorate our new home. Not sure where we'll put the Christmas tree. Someone in our neighbourhood has their Christmas lights up already.

Next week is Diwali. My mom and I always go out for lunch or dinner each year to celebrate.

I wish people wouldn't leave messages on my cell phone. It's such a process to retrieve it and I have call display so there's no need to leave a message. Someday I'm going to switch my voicemail message to say "It's Kate - don't leave a message!"

I'm fighting the urge to shop online. I don't need anything but the idea of ordering something from my chair is appealing to me right now. Oh, you know what I'd like? A mother's necklace or something. You know what I mean, something with my kids' names and/or birthstones. Something like that. I do own a Lisa Leonard necklace but it doesn't have Matthew's name on it. She said I could send it in and she'll add his name but I don't want to part with it in case it gets lost in the mail.

Ok that concludes my rambling for tonight.


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Book Review: Jesus Pure & Simple

Do you ever feel like you're being pulled in a million directions? Like you' re overwhelmed with various programs and ministries, or with studying the steps to good parenting or the best ways to share Jesus with your neighbors? These are all good things, but even good things can sometimes take us away from our number one responsibility--knowing Jesus better.

Wayne Cordeiro shares how to focus on the One who matters most and take part in the joy and fulfillment that He brings. But he also teaches how this leads to selflessness, a true love for others, and effective ministry. It will, in fact, change how you see the world around you.

When you focus on Christ, everything else falls into place. Your relationships. Your job. Your church. Your mission. It's all placed in the hands of Jesus, pure and simple.

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

I have always admired how some people can take an any day event and draw a parallel to something from the bible. Author Wayne Cordeiro does just this.

It took me a couple of chapters before I felt myself enjoying this book. It has some great teachings in the early chapters, but it just didn't really capture me until the fourth chapter when things started to flow more smoothly. At this point he encourages us to really think about Jesus and who He was. To think of Him at specific times of His life. I stopped to ponder those things and it made Him more real to me.

One of the things the author talks about that struck me was the difference between isolation and solitude. I always thought they were the same thing. They're not. Isolation being when we need to just be alone, away from everyone because we're so tapped out. But solitude is a time set aside to be alone with the Lord, to be open to hearing what He is saying to us.

So many simple truths to get back to plain and simple truth about our Lord. It isn't about what we can or try to do for Him. It's about just being with Him in His presence. Encountering Him.

My favourite part of the entire book is when he talks about the Bedouin sheepherders that will break the leg of a lamb who continually strays. He will bandage it, and nurture the lamb until his healing is complete. By this point the relationship has changed; the lamb is now closer to the shepherd than ever. This has been on my mind since I first read it - how in my own life, I feel as though my Shepherd has broken a part of me so I will not stray again, and He is holding me close while I heal. And when it is all over, there will be a new intimacy. It will all be worth it.

I enjoyed this book so much that I will likely seek out other books written by this author.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.  Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fall 2012

Friday, October 26, 2012

5QF ~ October 26

So much for blogging more this week.

I thought about it. I've been thinking a lot about this blog lately. I love it, and I love that it has documented so much of my life but I just don't have the time for it anymore.  Bless those of you that still check in regularly.

The course I'm taking through my church is called Freedom Session and it's turning me inside out. I'm pulling out all the painful things in my life that I've stuffed down over the years and it feels brutal. My emotions are so raw and I feel so out of control. The course runs from Sept - June with a graduation at the end. So far I've only committed to December but I want to see this through. There's so much in my life that I need to let go of so I can be free to be who God created me to be. I told Ian tonight that this is either going to end up being a huge, colossal disaster, or something absolutely incredible.

On the plus side, I love being a part of a small group again. It feels really good. I'm trying to get over my intense dislike and inability to do small talk but it's hard. I'm very shy and never know what to say. Tomorrow night I'm going to a Ladies Game Night at the church so I'll have to prepare a few topics for this small talk business so I don't look like a moron.

In other news, we finally got our family photos done last Sunday! Everyone was in great spirits and we headed off to the conservation area to hang out for a couple of hours and take some pictures. Tons of people had the same idea. Afterwards we went to Downey's Farm to buy our pumpkins and a couple of pies. It was an absolutely perfect day and I felt so happy and recharged heading into another busy week.

The children are crazy excited for Halloween next week. Sam is going to go out with his friends like he did last year. This is probably his last year of trick or treating. Julie wants to go out with her friends (and a parent). I will take Jordan out and Ian will stay at the house and give out candy. I might take Matthew to a few houses until he gets tired.

Speaking of Matthew, he does the cutest thing now. The last thing I do before leaving for work each morning is to kiss and hug each of the children before heading out the door. Matthew hurries over and lifts his face to get his kiss too. This morning his face was lifted, eyes were closed and he had this huge smile on his face. That image kept me going all day.

Ok, time for Mama M's Five Question Friday blog meme!

1. Who wakes up in the morning with the kids, you or hubby?

I'm up before everyone else during the week, then Ian gets up and starts waking the kids to get ready for school. Some days, if time allows, I help out with this. On the weekends it's usually Ian.

Bless him.

2. Do you watch the World Series even if your team isn't in it?

Is this hockey we're talking about?

Just kidding. I know it's baseball.

I have zero interest in baseball, so no.

3. Wh
at is the best compliment you have ever received?

The best ones were/are when someone tells me I'm a great mom, or I have a lovely family. That always makes me feel proud.

Recently my manager told me I was among the best she's ever worked with.

4. Do/did you dress up to take your kids trick or treating?

I usually do. I have this inflated pumpkin costume I wear every year, but this year I might skip it. The fan that keeps it inflated blows cold air up my neck and gives me a chill the entire time I'm outside and I usually get sniffly for a few days afterwards.

Not to mention I look like a total ass walking around.

Ian always dresses up. Sam and Julie used to tell me I wasn't allowed to go out trick or treating with them unless I dressed up too.

5. Do you have a favourite Bible verse? What is it and why?

I have a few. They're the ones that have carried me over the last year, and continue to carry me as I work through Freedom Session.

I lift my eyes up to the hills - where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.
~ Psalm 121:1-2

The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still.
~ Exodus 14:14

Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you. He will never let the righteous fall.
~ Psalm 55:22

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
~ Jeremiah 29:11-13

Do not be afraid, for I am with you.
~ Isaiah 43:5

Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned.

~ Isaiah 43:1-2

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

Have a wonderful weekend!


Saturday, October 20, 2012

Book Review: Nowhere But Up

"When you hit rock bottom, you have nowhere to go but up."

In Nowhere but Up, Pattie Mallette shares for the first time in detail about the pain and abandonment she experienced as a child, the sexual abuse she suffered for years, the severe depression she wrestled with as a teen, the deep struggles she faced as a single mom, and the faith she's learned to cling to through dark times.

With raw honesty, she spills the truth about a lifetime of moments that were punctuated by pain yet permeated with grace--and the journey that's brought her to where she is today.

*** It's not just teen moms who struggle or need to find hope. Whether you're a single mom, an addict, or a victim of abuse . . . whether you're on the verge of bankruptcy or the brink of divorce . . . whether you're in a dysfunctional family or the product of a broken home . . . whether you battle depression or struggle with anxiety . . . whether you live in fear or hide in shame . . . whether you've been abandoned, rejected, or ignored--there is hope. It doesn't matter where you find yourself today--broken, hurting, wounded, or shamed. If God can help me find my way up, I promise, He can do the same for you.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~
I had a hard time deciding if I wanted to review this book or not. I am not in any way a Justin Bieber fan, however I am a fan of stories of God's healing and redemption in the lives of His children. So, I decided to go for it.

I'll start by saying that I can certainly appreciate the difficulty she experienced as a young, single mother, and my heart sincerely hurt for her that she had experienced so much sexual abuse as a child. She didn't give up on herself, or her child, and she did whatever she had to do to ensure she could provide for him. For that, she gets my respect.

The book is basically two parts: the young Patti Mallette - struggling with the pain of sexual abuse, drug addiction and promiscuity, and then as teenage mother. Then it becomes her life as Justin Bieber's mother, and his rise to fame and less about her.

I don't know what I was expecting with this book, but I will say that I was disappointed by it. I kept waiting for "that moment" when she would talk about how God rescued her, or changed her life. I felt at times as though it was building to this big revelation, but it didn't happen. She spoke of it at times, but it was really watered down or glossed over. I didn't feel inspired or encouraged by her story. I felt sad for her for what she endured as a child, but I didn't feel sadness for her choice to do drugs or be promiscuous, thus resulting in a pregnancy.

I found this book to be an extremely quick read, and at times rather slow. Compared to other biographies I have read, this one had very simplistic writing and I felt it lacked something. Emotion, perhaps. It was a basic re-telling of her childhood and teen years, but it lacked sincere emotion.

I think her story could have been told better and come across as more inspirational if there was a stronger co-author behind it. Someone who could have told her story in a more inspiring way, to draw the reader in and truly feel for what she had experienced. Unfortunately it reads like a story about Justin Bieber's mom and how he got famous, when instead it could have been more about overcoming adversity and experiencing life-changing redemption. As a reader, I want to hear the voice of the "character" I'm reading. I didn't hear Pattie's voice in this book.

I won't be recommending this book to anyone, and I likely won't keep my copy. The truth is, Pattie's story is the same story as thousands of people - only she got a book deal out of it because of her son. Had she left out the majority of Justin's rise to fame and kept the book more about her it would have been a better read.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~  
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group


Monday, October 15, 2012


Oh my word. It's getting chilly 'round these parts.

This morning I actually had to put the heat on in the car on my way to work.

I had to wear a sweater.

But I drew the line at socks.

Which I regretted about two blocks from the house.

Still no Fall family photos yet.

Hoping there's a trip to the pumpkin patch in our near future. Always a fun time. Each of the children pick their own pumpkin. Ian carves Sam and Julie's and Jordan draws on hers and Mattie's. I don't like the smell of pumpkins so I just watch.

Craving peach pie.

Scored some Essie nail polish for half price yesterday. Guess I was in the right place at the right time.

The kids are so excited for Halloween. Sam is going as a steam punk guy, Julie is going to be a nerd and Jordan is going as Tinkerbell.  We're trying to find a hulk costume for Matthew. I saw one I liked but I can't remember where. We still have time.

Sam introduced me to Dubstep tonight. I liked it.

So tired tonight. Everything feels like an effort.

Time to do my course homework and get some sleep.


Saturday, October 13, 2012

5QF ~Oct 13

Hello poor, neglected, little blog.

Hello sweet readers who keep coming back even though there's nothing new to read.

I've got a bit of the blues these days. Feeling super stressed at work, even though I only had to work two days this week. Lots of pressure to make up for the time I've been off. I don't know how much longer I can handle this pressure, but I'll keep going as long as I have to. God gives me what I need for each day and I am thankful for that.

The course I'm taking at the church is challenging me, and it hurts. I'm taking a good, hard look at myself and I really don't like what I see. The course also requires me to revisit old wounds and that really, really, sucks. I'm feeling a little exposed emotionally and I don't like it. Not one bit. I'm taking it one step at a time and trusting in the process. Hopefully I'll be a better me when it's over.

Today we're hoping to get our Fall family photos done. I'm not one of those moms that make the family go dressed all matchy-matchy. Everyone chooses what they want to wear - it's a representation of their own personal style at the time. Somehow it always comes together and we have a photo we really love.

Matthew has finally realized that he can get places faster by walking, so that's all he wants to do now. It's been so much fun watching him become more comfortable with his legs. He used to have to crawl over to something to pull himself up after falling but now he can do it from anywhere. This morning I watched him squat down to pick something up and then stand up again. Brilliant.

Once again I'm late for Mama M's Five Question Friday blog hop.

1. Did you have any homecoming traditions?

I had no idea what this was and have always wondered. So, yesterday I took to The Twitter and asked. Turns out this is an American thing, something about going back to your highschool and wearing ribbons and cow bells or something. My lack of desire to return to highschool is matched only by my lack of desire to wear cow bells.

I don't get it.

2. Do you ask your spouse before spending money?

Always. It's a matter of respect. I don't care if it's a book I'm buying or an iPad, I always check first.

3. If you could be famous for something what would it be?
I think this was my question that I submitted to Mama M for this week. Oddly enough, I don't want to be famous. But, being famous almost always comes with financial security and that's something that's important to me.

If I was going to be famous for something then I'd like it to be related to my faith.

Either writing a book or speaking with Women of Faith. Something like that.

4. Have you ever seriously thought you were going crazy?


5. How do you eat your steak? Burger? (as in, well done, medium, still moo-ing...)

I like my steak rare, but not bleeding, and I like my burgers medium-well. Often when they're bbq'd well it's done too much for my liking.

Ok there you have it.

I'm off to finally get dressed and to enjoy the afternoon with my family.

Happy Saturday!


Monday, October 08, 2012

Thanksgiving Weekend

I'm loving this Thanksgiving weekend. It's a lot colder than I was expecting, so we haven't been able to do our Fall family photos yet. I'm hoping tomorrow is the day.

Yesterday Ian and I went to see Looper at the movie theatre. I really liked it even though I was confused half the time. While I enjoy time travel type movies, I'm easily lost.

Ian has had an awful earache for the last few days. He tried blowing warm air into his ear, mineral oil and hot compresses but it kept getting worse. He has an exceptionally high pain tolerance, so for him to admit he was in pain really worried me. It got so bad overnight that he ended up in the ER this morning at about 5:30 am. The doctor said his ear was severely infected and prescribed drops, antibiotics and painkillers. He said if it wasn't better by tomorrow that he'd have to go back for an IV.  I'm praying hard that he feels better in the morning.

This morning I stood staring at my defrosted turkey, trying to remember the cooking instructions my mother gave me. I cut off the packaging and reached in to pull out the bag that's supposed to hold all the turkey guts but it wasn't there. But its neck was and I had to pull it out. Revolting. The missing bag was up its hiney which was revolting times two. My mom had told me to make sure I rinsed it out well but what does that mean really? Five minutes? Ten minutes? I didn't know but I ended up giving that bird a bath. I washed it all over and rubbed its gross body until I was sure there weren't any germs left.

I couldn't remember what time I needed to put it in the oven and I couldn't reach my mother, so I decided to tweet for help. I said I had a 3.28 kg turkey and need to know how long to cook it if I wanted to eat at 6pm. There were a lot of smart Alec's on the twitter today making fun of my teeny tiny anorexic turkey. Turns out my turkey was $3.28/kg and actually weighed approximately 16 lbs. apparently I can't read.

Ian's best friend came for dinner and we had such a lovely time together. Afterwards we had a great talk about God's goodness and shared a lot of laughs. My cheeks are still aching. I cleaned up the kitchen and put the girls to bed and finally crashed in bed to watch Revenge.

I am blogging on my iPad tonight. I started out thinking this was the best thing ever but now my fingers hurt and there's a ton of spelling mistakes I'll need to fix so I'm not as impressed as I was at the beginning. Then Ian tells me I could have dictated this entire post to Siri and she would have typed it in for me. Next time, Siri...

Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian friends!


Saturday, October 06, 2012

5QF ~ Oct 5

I can hardly believe we are now into October. Unreal. Where has this year gone??

I love this time of year. I was in the littles' bedroom this morning when I was hit with a wave of sadness as I thought about our old house. My kitchen had these huge windows and I would watch the sun set over the ravine across the street as I washed the dinner dishes. I never grew tired of that gorgeous view. It was beautiful in the fall. I miss many things about our old home, but that view is at the top of my list.

I had just picked up Matthew when I looked up and saw the tree outside the window, its leaves a bright yellow. When I was pulling out of the driveway I looked up at the tree once more and only the leaves facing our house had turned colour. The rest were normal. I felt as though God gave me a new view to look at to take my sadness away. In fact, every tree I passed on my way to work today was a bit brighter than I noticed a couple of days before.

Julie's dance class went well this week. I brought Jordan and Matthew with me to give Ian a bit of quiet time at home. I discovered that if I took Jordan outside to play in the park I could spy on Julie's class. They did 30 minutes of warm-up and 15 minutes of actual dance instruction. I was a little annoyed.

Wednesday night was my course at the church. I grabbed a sandwich on my way home and ate it before heading off to the church. My stomach felt weird as I was leaving and I figured I ate too fast. I felt worse as the evening wore on, but I thought that was just because I was feeling emotional about the topic. By the time I got home I was a mess. I had chills and was shaking all over. Ian put about five blankets on me but I couldn't get warm. I ended up missing work on Thursday which I hated doing. I spent the entire day in bed, sleeping off whatever bug I had. I had to be in the office today because the manager was on a vacation day but I was longing for the end of the day and to be home. Normally I take the little ones out on Friday nights but tonight we just hung out at home. I love those Lifetime movies of the week. We don't get them here in Canada and we don't get Hallmark movies either. Bummer. But tonight I was so desperate to watch one that I watched it in increments on YouTube. What can I say.

Hopefully I'll feel back to my usual self this weekend.


It's Thanksgiving weekend!! I'm cooking a turkey on Sunday and it's going to be awesome. Ian bought the turkey last night and I've been teasing him by saying it's the size of a fat baby. He bought a nicer one than I was going to buy. I figured I'd get some no-name brand utility turkey.

Ian and I are going on a date tomorrow afternoon to see a movie. So excited. Monday I'm going to visit with my lovely Mama. I'm happy to spend the next few days with all the people I love.

Ok. Enough chit chat - I need to get to bed.

But first... it's Mama M's Five Question Friday blog hop time!

1. What album/cd/download are you embarrassed to admit you have?

Nothing. I have awesome taste in music no matter what Ian says.

2. What's the one thing your spouse does better than you?

Only one, huh? He's better at choosing to see the good in people than I am.

(And he's more patient and makes a better cup of tea than I ever will)

3. When do you start buying Halloween Candy?

The week before the 31st I guess. I try not to buy it too early because I don't need the temptation.

4. Family closets - yay or nay?

That's a big fat NAY.

First of all, who has a whole extra room they can dedicate to becoming a closet to hold the whole family's clothes? And even if you did...really? Is it that hard to deliver a basket of clothing to a person's room and then put it away? Rooms generally have closets in them, and if they don't - like my Sam - then you get an extra dresser or a hook for the door or something.

I'll admit it, I roll my eyes at the whole family closet concept. I think it's lazy and it's a waste of space.

5. Which home/cleaning chore do you hate the most? Why?

I hate sweeping and washing the floors. It's a chore that needs to be done everyday with kids and a dog and it's annoying. And then people wear their shoes in the house which is disrespectful on top of disrespectful.

Short answer: Floors

Ok that's it. I'm going to bed!


Sunday, September 30, 2012

Book Review: What a Difference a Mom Makes

Boys will be boys--always.

And no one has a more powerful impact on them than you, Mom.

Surprise! Your boy wants to please you, and he cares deeply about what you think. Those driving needs will stay with him throughout his lifetime. That gives you, Mom, a lot of influence over your son. You can set him up for success in life.

In What a Difference a Mom Makes, the New York Times bestselling author Dr. Kevin Leman reveals how you can make a positive imprint on your son--from the moment you first hold him in your arms until the moment he leaves for college. And the best news? It's never too late to start, no matter what age your son is now.

Through Dr. Leman's expert advice, you'll understand who your son is on the inside, the truth behind sibling squabbles (and how to handle them), a secret for discipline that works every time, and how to navigate the critical teen years. You'll also discover how your parenting style impacts your relationship with your son and how you can respond in a healthy way to his growing interest in sex and relationships.

Want to capture your boy's heart? Want a man you'll be proud to call your son? You can make a difference, because you are the one who matters most in your boy's world.

Even if he won't admit it.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

If you've  been reading my blog for any length of time, then you know I'm very blessed to have four children, two of which are boys. So I definitely couldn't pass up the opportunity to review this book. I was pretty excited for it to arrive.

I enjoy a very good relationship with my 13 year old son, Sam. We communicate well with each other and we share the same sense of humour. While he knows I'm a softie, he is careful not to take advantage of that, and he is very respectful of me. I cannot tell you how thankful I am that he is the way he is. I want to ensure that I do everything I can as his mother to raise him up through the difficult teen years into a good man. It is my hope that Matt and I will share the same close relationship as he grows older.

One of the many things I liked about this book is that it isn't geared towards a particular age group of boys. The author touches on each stage of life, from birth right through to college. He shares what is important to boys, how they think, and what they long for. The best thing they long for? To make their mom happy!

Many times I'd read something that would get me thinking, and I'll ask Sam if that was true, or something he felt or wondered about. It opened up a few really great conversations.

The author talks about how to raise your son to be respectful to you, and to his siblings. When to stop doing things for them so they learn to do them for themselves, when and how to talk about drinking, drugs and sex. How to treat a girl, and definitely how not to treat a girl. He covers temper tantrums, positive reinforcement, how to let go and how birth order plays a role.

I was pleased to discover that many of the things a mother should be doing are things I'm already doing, but I still learned so much. I want to still have strong relationships with Sam and Matt even after they are married and have families of their own.

I've always been so thankful to be married to a wonderful man like my Ian. He is respectful of me, affectionate and encouraging. He helps around the house and willingly changes diapers and goes grocery shopping. He is devoted to God and lives that out every day. Our sons have a great example to follow. It's easy to feel as though I don't have as big an impact on them being their mother. After reading this book I realized that my role as their mother is equally as important. And in some areas, even more so.

I will definitely keep this book on my bookshelf and recommend it to anyone who is blessed to have boys.

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

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".


Book Review: My Journey to Heaven

An unforgettable trip to the gates of heaven and back

As Marv Besteman lay in a hospital bed, visions of celestial beauty were the last thing on his mind. He had just had surgery to remove a rare pancreatic tumor. Alone after visiting hours ended, Marv tossed and turned, wanting more than anything else to simply sleep and escape the excruciating pain and misery for a while.

He was about to have an experience he never could have imagined--and could never forget.

In My Journey to Heaven, Marv Besteman shares the true story of his experience of heaven with astounding detail. You'll meet the angels who accompanied him to the gate, overhear his conversation with St. Peter, and feel the joy as he recognizes friends and family members who touched his life.

If you are grieving the loss of a loved one, or even if you just wonder about what happens after we die, you'll find peace, comfort, and encouragement in Marv's story.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Do you ever wonder what Heaven will be like? I'm pretty sure everyone has at some point or another, especially those who have lost a loved one.
Occasionally my mind will wander and I'll wonder about it. I'll try to imagine what it would feel like to see Jesus face to face. To hear Him speak my name. To feel Him hold my hand. To see my father again, and my grandmother. My old school friend. My baby.
My Journey to Heaven was written by a man who claimed to have been taken to Heaven for about a half an hour, before it was discovered that he was there by mistake. Right from the get go he lost me as a reader. Still, I continued to read with as open a mind as I could manage.
The author didn't die and go to Heaven for this experience. Rather he was laying in a hospital bed in excruciating pain, dozing on and off, when two angels appeared in his room and took him to Heaven. He talks about what he saw through a glass wall, talking to (and arguing with!) Peter to be let in, and then his subsequent return to earth.
His account of Heaven wasn't anything I had ever read or heard about before. He talks of seeing babies of all ages and stages of formation, just floating around. A long line of people ahead of him waiting to be allowed inside. The colours he saw, the way the angels looked. And then, the revelation that he was there by mistake.
As if God would make that mistake!
Who am I to say that he never saw Heaven? Maybe God did show him a preview. The author is very quick to say that you can believe him or not, he knows his truth.
I found the entire story hard to swallow and took it as an easy read of fiction. I was distracted by the continual digression from the point of the book, cliches and repetition. I didn't enjoy this book at all. The back of the book says the reader will find peace, comfort and encouragement after reading the author's story. I don't feel any of these things. Rather I feel disturbed. It didn't sound like anything I've ever read in the Bible.
I never like to give a negative review, but I have to be honest and say that I will not be recommending this book to anyone.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~  

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".


Saturday, September 29, 2012

5QF ~ Sept 29 (And Other Stuff)

I had all these great plans to blog this week and I just never found the time or energy. This week was month end and the stress and pressure was even heavier this month. I was working late each night but it wrapped up yesterday and I'm relieved. I collected close to $1.2 million this month and I think that's a record for me.
Tuesday night I took Julie to her dance class and had 45 glorious minutes alone to read quietly. 
Wednesday night I joined a new study at my church called Freedom Session. It runs through to the Spring with a graduation at the end. I tried taking it last Fall but my emotions were so raw and I was just so empty. Everything in me was screaming GET OUT! GET OUT! I just couldn't go back. But this year I'm going to do it. I am carrying around a lot of junk in my heart that doesn't need to be there. I'm scared to pull it all out and deal with it, but my longing to be free is bigger than my fears. I've committed until Christmas, but have every hope of continuing on.
Last night Ian and the big kids had youth group, so the littles and I walked to Mac's to get slushies. After we returned home and put Matt to bed, Jordan and I watched a movie together tucked in my bed. I love having that sweet time with her. She tells me I'm the best mom ever.
Isn't that the sweetest? She has no frame of reference to determine that I am the best, but I am because she says so. I love it.
This morning I took Matthew to get his first haircut. Two thoughts ran through my mind as I held my little guy on my lap. The first was that I was watching his babyness disappear right in front of my eyes. The second was that I'd never seen anyone cut hair as fast as this guy did. Matthew was looking all around and squirming and this guy just went with it. He was all over Matthew's head at once, it seemed.
Here's the before and after.
He is ridiculously cute and loves hearing everyone telling him that today.
This afternoon we're going over to my mom's to visit. My sister is visiting as well, so that will make it extra special. Sam is going to the mall to meet up with some friends for a bit, and Ian and the girls will meet up with him a little later to walk around together. Tonight is Family Movie Night and we're going to watch The Avengers.
Thanksgiving is next weekend and I'm going to cook a turkey. I think I've only cooked two in my life but I had success each time. Hopefully this will be just as good. I'm going to get the kids involved and give everyone something to do so that when we're all sitting at the table at dinnertime, everyone will feel as though they contributed. I love Thanksgiving and I'm super excited that this year I can afford a turkey!
I love how our lives have changed. God is good to us.
Ok! It's time for my sweet friend Mama M's Five Question Friday!
1. Do you prefer to drive to your vacation spot or fly?

I prefer to drive. That way there's no chance I might, you know, fall out of the sky or crash. I've seen LOST. I know what can happen.

Aside from the whole crashing thing, I don't like flying because I'm terrified of heights and I'm claustrophobic. So when you put them together you get a freaked out Kate. Not to mention the luggage limit/losing my luggage, pat downs and scans at the airport.

When I drive I can take what I want, get out when I want and I won't fall out of the sky.

2. If you could live any where in the world, where would you go and why?

I'd like to live in Florida. I really like it there.

3. Should grown women wear leggings?

I don't know. I guess it depends on how they're worn. If someone is wearing them as pants then no. But if you have a long sweater over them, I guess. I'm fashion-challenged. I just don't want to see butts. Cover them up, ladies. And remember, just because something fits doesn't mean it should be worn.

Just sayin.

4. If you could change your name to any other name, would you? And what would it be?

No. I like the name Kate. It suits me and I don't meet a lot of other Kates around. My full name is Kathryn but I'm a Kate.

5. What magazines to you have subscriptions to?

Today's Parent and Chatelaine. I get them for a $1 each but seldom read them. But that doesn't stop me from getting excited when they arrive in the mail.

Alright, I'm off to enjoy this beautiful Saturday. Have a great weekend!