December 31, 2007

Just Keep Swimming

I wanted to let you all know how this deployment has gone so far. This isn't a complaining post, just a post to refresh your faith, just as mine has grown and stretched. We've had some moments, but we just keep swimming. Just keep going and it's amazing how we have been taken care of.

So far this deployment:

1. My Grandma has been in the hospital twice, both times critical. We love her and send her our prayers.

2. We traveled to visit my sister and cousins and had a great time over Thanksgiving. We even managed to pull together a pretty cool Day-after-Thanksgiving dinner.

3. The furnace went out. It was COLD, but thankfully we prepare for such things as best we can. With the help of good friends and the emergency checkbook, we were warm again in a few days.

4. Megan had an ear infection. She had antibiotics for the first time. She spent 3 weeks sick and lost a pound, but she's finally improving. (and sleeping, thank heaven's.) I have also been sick a little, but am much better now.

5. My dear friend had her 4th baby and the other 3 came to my house for a fun overnighter. Combined with the kiddo I usually watch, that was 6 kids 6 and under for a while. What fun!

6. NW storms. We have had our share of crazy weather here in the NW this year. The garage flooded a little, but thankfully we had no major damage. New gutters and improvements so that won't happen again are on the list for next spring.

7. Adam's birthday, and Christmas both came while dad was gone. Both were crazy and busy but lots of fun and we missed dad a bunch during the celebrations.

8. Meg learned to crawl. She's officially mobile. That meant I have had to do some furniture arrangement to keep her out of the fireplace and other places. I guess I need to figure out how to put child locks on the cabinets pretty soon.

9. My dad came for a visit. That was a surprise, to say the least. Good to see both of them though and have a little dinner together. Adam loved the marshmallow shooter that was a Christmas gift too. Poor kitty.

10. I was given the option between nursing my baby and taking a medication I "needed". What an awful choice. I decided to hold of on the meds. I don't think it's as critical as that crazy dr lady I saw. Thank heaven for second opinions.

11. When I felt I was coming up on my breaking point and couldn't pull things together, I was asked to give a talk in church. I had just received a new job in church, working in the children's program and I wasn't sure I could do it all. Having to speak gave me the opportunity to re-center myself and get my act together. Sometimes good things come out of stressful situations.

So much more has happened. We are still standing, although some days I wonder why we don't go to bed at 6:00. The moral of the story is that deployment is hard and things happen, but there's always options for you to be lifted up in ways you never expected. Really most of those things would have happened if he was here too, it's just harder to deal with while he's gone. Just like Dory in Finding Nemo, we Just Keep Swimming....

December 29, 2007

The Birthday to Remember

I know this is a little late, but I wanted to tell you all about Adam's Zoo Lights party. First, he has this fascination with this local tv show called Evening Magazine. It's about local events and places to go, that kind of thing. It's a family friendly show and he loves it. One of the hosts is a silly guy named John Curely who Adam just loves.So we went to Zoo Lights with some friends and took cupcakes to celebrate Adam's birthday. While we were sitting to have a pic-nic dinner and cupcakes, Adam noticed right away that John Curely was there, doing a spot on Zoo Lights for the show. He asked me if he could meet him for real and take him a cupcake. We went down and waited where he was filming. Amazingly there wasn't a crowd. When the took a break from filming, John Curley came right over to us to talk to us. Adam gave him a cupcake, told him it was his birthday and got to take a picture with him. The guy was truly nice and kind and very generous with his limited time. I was impressed. The whole rest of the night all Adam talked about was meeting this guy. That was the highlight of his 7th birthday. So here's our photos of the cool birthday celebration.

December 27, 2007

Merry Christmas!

We hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas and has plans for the best New Years ever. I wanted to share some of our great days this Christmas Season. Thanks to all of the friends and family who were part of it in some small way. It isn't Christmas without the love and friendship of all of you.

Our Holiday Season Top 10 List

(not necessarily pictured above)

1. Adam meeting John Curley at Zoo Lights.

2. The furnace getting fixed.

3. 12 Days of Christmas gifts showing up at our home. We loved that!!!

4. Megan learning to really crawl.

5. Not having to cook dinner. Catering is the way to go. (Thanks for all of it, Annalia.) Going to Grandma's house was so perfect for us this year.

6. All of the plates of cookies and goodies that made their way to our house. We loved sharing them with cousins and family.

7. Watching the kids participate in two Nativity Plays.

8. The Stake Christmas Concert- and the Creche display. That was AMAZING.

9. Decorating cookies with friends.

10. FHE with friends, even though I made salt hot chocolate instead of good hot chocolate. That's okay, we fixed it and I am grateful no one held it against me.


December 18, 2007

Baby it's cold inside!!!

BURRRRRR!!! It's been cold for the NW. Sometime Sunday my furnace decides it's done working. After being gone all day, I don't know when that happened, but I didn't discover it until late at night. The next morning it's 58 degrees in my house. Kids are cold and cranky, I am cold and cranky but we are up and around. I called around and finally found someone who could come and take a look at it. About noon I remember we have a little space heater in the garage that would help keep us a little warmer. We do have a fireplace, but if you haven't heard, it's been raining here. Everything is wet because I never use the fireplace. (Did I mention DH is at sea?)

The story is long but here is the moral. God takes care of us. He knows our needs before we do and all we have to do is ask for help. The furnace guy comes and tells me to expect a bill of about $400. It's Christmas time and I was hoping to spend that money on Christmas. That same day in the mail we receive several Christmas cards, one from a close family member. When I open the card there is a check for Christmas for $400. It's just so amazing. I called him right away, asking how he knew what we needed. He didn't, he just did what he thought he could. I told him I felt a little bad spend that $400 on a furnace when it's meant to be for Christmas. He told my not to let my kids freeze, he would be mad.

If ever you feel alone and desperate, talk to God. He really does care for each and every one of us. What a blessing.

December 8, 2007

Let it Snow!

Let it SNOW! When you are almost 7 and it's almost your birthday all you want in the world is snow. It's more magical than Santa to this kiddo. It was a fluke, because we don't really get snow often here, but he sure had a good time building his snowman in the dark. I couldn't really tell him not to though because if his dad were here, he would be doing the same thing. Like father, like son.

Megan Meets Santa

Today was the boat children's Christmas party. We had a good time playing pin the star on the Christmas Tree, dance like a Reindeer, cake walk and toss the ball into the present. They had a "guess how many is in the jar game" too. There were 8 jars of different things and we had brought one of them with us. Adam won 4 of the remaining 7. I don't know how he guessed so closely. Crazy, but he was excited to bring home those cool prizes.

Santa arrived near the end to see the kiddos and take pictures. It was Megan's first time to see Santa and I wondered how she would do. She wanted that beard. She got her hands so tangled in it I had to rescue Santa. So funny. She wasn't afraid though. Adam said he didn't have a big wish list this year and would be happy with whatever Santa brought for him. (thank heaven's).

What a day, what a memory. Merry Christmas everyone!

December 1, 2007

I saw a version of this on Deli Mom's blog and had to copy the idea. What a great gift for a submariner who's deployed. Now if I can just figure out a way to get it to him...

Happy Happy Birthday Husband! Love you and hope you have a great one. You are the center of our world!

November 30, 2007

Yes, Adam there is a Santa Claus.

So he’s almost 7, he’s smart and I am not sure he ever really believed in Santa. This year he’s really asking seriously about it. I am torn about the whole thing. On one hand it’s so symbolic of childhood innocence. If you don’t ever believe in Santa, it seems to take some of the magic out of being a kid. On the other hand, I am not a big fan of lying to my kids and if he’s going to get something really cool for Christmas, I want him to know it has come from me and his dad because we love him, not because some big guy in a red suit dropped in to check on him.

Tonight there’s a commercial on tv. Again he asks me about Santa. Then says he’s sure Santa has to have a LOT of money, to buy all those presents. I told him about the North Pole, Elves and making the toys. So then he asks where Santa buys all the materials to make the presents. It all has to come from somewhere, he says. Smart kid.

I am walking a fine line here. I want him to have a good Christmas and at the same time I don’t want him to be the brat in school who goes around telling kids Santa’s not really real. I want him to be open to the magic of Christmas, how people are kinder this time of year and how wonderful things can happen in your life if you have a little faith now and then, even if it is in Santa Claus. Whatever happens, this is probably the last year I can pull off any illusion for him of Santa and it’s a little sad.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

November 19, 2007

A friend like that

U had to move this post over from the "other" blog place. Just wanted my friend to know I am still thinking about her. Originally posted 11-4-07.

Have you ever had a good friend? A really good friend? Someone that maybe you don't talk to every single day, but that you know if you call they will be there for you, no matter what? Ever had a friend who just "gets" you, no matter where you are in life or emotions? Someone who gives you the space you need to figure things out but will be there to pick you up from the floor when you need it?

I am so blessed to have so many good friends. I have friends I have known for years who I talk with seldomly but I would move heaven and earth for. I have watched my friends families grow, had my hand held through husband issues, discussed childhood trauma at length, learned spiritual lessons from and so much more. I have a dear friend who cleaned my cat box for me while I was pregnant and my husband was gone. That's a true friend if you ask me. (Thanks Deli Mom.)

I have a friend right now who I have come to love. She's a good friend who knows when to step in and when to step back. We have something deep and heartbreaking in common. We have shared depths of emotions that no one else has ever seen. We have shared tears, talks, very private moments (she was there in the dr's office with me when I got pregnant) and we have shared faith. She had faith for me and my family when I didn't. She has inspired me and lifted me up in so many ways. I am privileged to call her my friend.

Today, I am so thrilled for her I can't even tell you. To my friend, you have come through it, and you are still here. You are stronger, you are wiser and you are so blessed. I have faith for you and your family right now and I want you to know, I am behind you 100%.

November 18, 2007

I am glad for many things

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love being able to look for things to be grateful for. To count my blessings and find so many I didn't pay attention to before. This year my DH is gone to sea, but I am grateful none the less. So here is my tongue in cheek top 10 things I am grateful for this year. I'll post more blessings later.
1. I am grateful for 24 hour road service. That was worth the money.
2. I am grateful for Dave at the Auto Repair place. He says he can fix anything and he'll give you a lift home before he does.
3. I am grateful for the scratch and dent appliance store not far away. The fridge has been making a bad noise for quite a while now. Did you know you can load up and take a new one home that day? No waiting!
4. I am grateful for men in my church who know how to change out a water heater. Lowe's even had one on sale. Can't get any luckier than that.
5. I am grateful for the tree service people who can come and take care of stray branches before they actually hit my house.
6. I am grateful for my friends. I have wonderful friends who will take my kiddos when I am at my wits end and they may need a break for mom time for a while.
7. I am grateful for the boat communication system that seems to work once or twice during patrol and I can hear good things from DH. That also gives him a chance to hear about how nice the Les Schwab people are in fixing tires any time.
8. I am grateful for my health system. As frustrating as it can be sometimes, when my baby has been screaming for 3 days with an ear infection, they get me in and take care of her. I am also grateful the pharmacy line isn't any longer. An hour is about my limit.
9. I am grateful for family living close by who can come and help when I have the flu and can't get out of bed. They are wonderful to come and take care of the kiddos, clean up after them, make some dinners and maybe even clean the toilet after I toss my cookies a few times.
10. I am grateful most of all that I have the ability and limited sanity to take care of all of this on my own and laugh about it all later. I have a great husband who supports me 100%. I am really grateful for him and the job he does to protect our freedoms and the example he sets to those around him.