Temptation

I am enjoying my time home with the kiddos everyday. I really am. I love feeling organized with their school work, getting a routine for extra curricular activities, menu planning and shopping. I am grateful that I have the opportunity to be home with them.

So, why is it that I am feeling so drawn to another work opportunity? Is it because I can’t say no? Or is it my competitive nature? My inability to stay in one place? Or am I an overachiever who thrives on the chaos of having too much to do with too little time?

Tasting Fall

One of my favorite things about Fall is the foods. I love pumpkin pancakes, and apple crisps, and the fall drinks.

There have been far too many silly debates about the Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes. Yeah, yeah, yeah, we all know there is no real pumpkin in them. It’s a flavor, like most other drinks, and I enjoy it, so I’ll drink them.

Someone shared a recipe with me recently that I had to try. It was so simple, my 12 y/o was able to make it. And it was so yummy, I’m certain I’ll be making this again soon:

http://www.thecountrycook.net/2012/10/pumpkin-pie-dump-cake.html#0RYBF4G0ca1Cp7VR.32

I’ve seen pumpkin flavors in a variety of things during this time of year. Most recently, my sister shared pumpkin spice popcorn. What’s your favorite fall flavor? Or the strangest thing you’ve seen on the store shelves?

Another season begins

Here we are at the beginning of another school year. I have three kids starting up this week. It’s fun because this will be the first full school year that I have been home — Ever. I have been working full time since my oldest started kinder…

My oldest is starting 11th grade. (Man, that alone will add more gray to my head) She is a piece of cake, though. She is so independent and self motivated that I just check in once in a while to make sure she’s progressing at a good pace.

Then there is the 7th grader. He’s my tough cookie, you know, the one you have to beg and bribe to get ANY school work done. And even then, there is a melt down at least once a week.

My 1st grader just LOVES school. The day the books were picked up, she sat down and started right in on the reading workbook. She did workbooks just for fun all summer long.

Of course, I have my 4 y/o. He is so used to having someone to play with constantly. It’ll be an adjustment for him, and me, trying to find fun things to occupy him. My goal is to not stick him in front of the TV – educational or not.

So I have my hands full, but I’m looking forward to getting things organized and start pacing out the year. Things are already feeling a little hectic outside of school (soccer and such, but that’s another post all by itself). I need to find some time this week to put the rest of the school room together and — who am I kidding, there’s no time. Haha. We’ll figure it out, one day at a time.

Hi-ho, Hi-ho, it’s off to camp we go!

I should be packing the car. I should be cleaning the house in preparation for the housesitter. I should be planning the “what-to-dos” for vacation. But here I sit, surrounded by list after list of what I SHOULD be doing.

We are heading out on an adventure this morning. Yosemite. Camping. Bears. It really is quite an adventure for our family. Our last camping experience was not so good (it would take a whole other page to tell THAT story), and neither R or myself are really the outdoors type.

I made the mistake of reading all about BEARS. I wanted to be prepared. But now I’m becoming paranoid. I read that they can smell the crumbs in the car seats! How do people with kids SURVIVE this? What if the have ketchup on the clothes they bring into the tent? What if my 12 y/o tries to hide candy bar in his tent? (Because he would)

Time to stop being paranoid and just go. Focus instead on the wonderful things my family is going to experience, the memories we will make together. We’re reading Peter Pan on the drive up. Yes, read – not watch. I want to enjoy 5 days of no TV or video games. Just books and card games. And nature, even if it means mosquitos and bears.

Mom’s Night Out

Went to see a movie last night with my husband: Mom’s Night Out. It’s a comedy (I highly recommend) but it left me in tears, both the good and bad kind.

It opened with a SAHM expressing how frustrated she feels with her failures as a mom. This is SO spot on with how I’ve been feeling over the past few months. (I keep feeling like my adjustment period should be ending soon, but here I am still feeling like I suck at my job day after day.)

Now, of course, the mom’s night the ladie’s planned went nothing like how they thought. What could go wrong did. But the laughs kept coming- I had tears streaming down my face and an ache in my side.

So, the moral of the story? I need to stop comparing myself to the other mothers around me. Stop comparing my home to theirs. I just need to focus on taking care of my babies, my husband, and my home the way the Lord is leading us because this is where he has me. But also remember to put on my oxygen mask first so I can take care of them. 😉

All dressed up and no where to go

One of the things I was most excited about, working from home, was the change of uniform:  Yoga pants, all day everyday.  No need to get up at 5 am every day to put on my professional attire and perfect my makeup and hair.  Just scoop my hair in to a ponytail and run out the door.

I had a conversation with my husband a few days ago about why I like my job as a server at a local steakhouse so much.  Is it really because I like what I do or the people I work with?  Do I like it more than being home with my family?  I thought, hmmm, I guess I just need the adult conversation after being home with the kids all day.  But as I forced myself to put on real clothes the other day, I realized that a huge part of why I like it is the reason to get dressed.  I’m a creature of habit, and having a uniform to wear and a purpose for looking professional (hair and makeup) makes me feel good.  I know it shouldn’t matter what I look like.  My kids and husband love me with or without being dolled up.  But I enjoy walking out the door feeling professional, and it’s something I miss greatly about working everyday.  I guess its a good thing that I only have to do it twice a week as opposed to 6 days a week.

So, here I sit, on a typical Monday dressed for my billing job in my best yoga pants and a smooth ponytail.  Throw in some lime green, fuzzy socks and my Monday uniform is set. 🙂  But I will look forward to the weekend when I dress to go out again.

Houston, do you copy?

I find it interesting that in the midst of this “age of communication” there is less actual communicating going on.  We may be sharing information quicker, but I think we’re leaving something behind.

I work in a restaurant where I watch couples out for dinner together, sitting across from each other staring at their phones.  Maybe I could give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they’re checking in with the babysitter, but I highly doubt it takes two to call home.  Maybe they should consider leaving the phones in the car, just for an hour?  Is whatever they’re texting or that Facebook feed SO important it can’t wait for 60 minutes?

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Then there’s the family who has 2 kids glued to their phones or tablets playing games instead of talking about what they did at school, or their favorite part of the movie they just saw.  The dinner hour used to be something special to families, the one time of day the family all sits down together to talk.  Parents today always seem shocked with the things their kids get into as they get older, asking themselves “How did I not know about that?”  How can you expect to know anything about your children if you don’t engage in conversations with them?

I have a 15 y/o daughter who is quickly falling into this habit.  She doesn’t have a phone, but the iPod has become a constant accessory.  The biggest use for her iPod is emailing.  Not so bad, right?  Wrong.  She uses her email as a form of “text” with her friends, exchanging and obscene number of messages in a day.  I asked her the other day when the last time she had talked to her friend, L.  Her response: “I don’t know.  She doesn’t have an email.”  Have we so quickly forgotten what it’s like to pick up the phone and call a friend?

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I’m not against cell phones, or text messages.  I can’t even put a number on the texts I send and receive in a month.  But even though I’m exchanging messages with friends and family, how often are our words misunderstood because it’s difficult to express our tone.  Sometimes putting a smiley at the end of a sentence isn’t enough. 

I think I’ve guilted myself enough now. 🙂 TIme to go make a few phone calls.