Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Attention

Attention, kind readers: the dogs have been returned to the state of happy puffs.

I was informed by one of my good friends a few days ago that Mackenzie especially needed to be walked every day.  You see, this is an upgrade from our regular schedule of once a week, maybe once every other week.  So, I have increased the frequency of our walks to once every other day.  I will hopefully work up to walking every day. Maybe.

Today I just got back from walking them for 25 minutes around our quiet neighborhood.  They both had a great time, and we got some good obedience/ dominance training in.  I was also told by the aforementioned friend that I needed to seriously consider letting them know who is top dog around here.  So, we've been working on that.  Mackenzie still struggles with not going into hyper-blur speed every time she's in my presence, so it is definitely a work in progress with her.  Zenzi totally gets it, and is fine with it- most of the time.  Unless Mackenzie starts getting a little uppity.

Plus, I brushed and cuddled each of them for awhile after we got back, and they were both very appreciative.  Mackenzie was actually calm in my lap after our walk.  I was amazed.  So now they are both happy puffs.

As far as other happenings, this past week and a half has been very eventful and fun. The weekend before last we went down to central Texas to visit the Br--- side of the family (David's family).  We spent just shy of 24 hours there, but it was a good visit nonetheless.  I went with my wonderful sister Amie and mother-in-law Nancy to a craft fair the local town was having, and we saw lots of cute crafts.  I got several ideas for making Christmas gifts. 

Then we had a wonderful lunch, and stuffed ourselves (preceded by a delicious roast beef dinner the night before). Then, we drove home and headed straight to my friend DeAnne's house for our church ministry group, and to celebrate the baptism of their two daughters.

We missed getting to see the actual baptism of the girls, but I got to see pictures afterwards, and I was so impressed at the way they did it.  They had their daughters write personal testimonies (about a  paragraph each), then at the meeting they read it in front of everyone, then their father baptized them in their swimming pool.  I love that the girls got to share their testimony, and that it was such a personalized thing for them.

The next day we went to church and I did the art project with the 2-3 year old class, then taught the kindergarten Sunday school, then taught the bible lesson for the older kids in children's church.  We covered the Ten Commandments in the Sunday school class, and the jury is still out on whether or not my sweet little four and five year olds in my class absorbed the point of the lesson.  But, they enjoyed playing the game that went along with it, and I promised them that if they memorized the commandments and told them to me the next week they would get a prize.  They really liked that part.

After church we went out to lunch with some more good friends and their three little kids to Ali Baba's.  If you are ever in the Dallas metroplex, you need need need to look up one of their locations and try it.  It's the very best Mediterranean restaurant chain in the Dallas area, at least that I've been to so far.  Their gyro meat and tzatziki are the real deal- just like the stuff they make in Greece.

Monday I slept in, worked on the house, and cooked.  Tuesday I woke up with a sore throat so I slept in again. Wednesday I got up a little earlier, worked on the house, and cooked.  Then, late that night David and I went to the store to get some last minute items for Thanksgiving.  Thursday we got up early, cooked some broccoli cheese casserole, and then headed over to DeAnne's and had lunch with her and her family.  Then we visited a little while and had dessert.  Then, we headed over to my sister's house for a little while to see my side of the family.  It's nice that we only live about 5 minutes away from Melanie's house now.

After finishing at Melanie's house we went to Toys 'R' Us  for their Black Friday sale.  The doors opened at 10pm, and we got there at around 10:30.  We stood in line outside in the cold until just before midnight, then we finally got in the door at just before midnight.  We finished shopping in just less than 30 minutes, and then stood in line to check out for 2 hours.  The line wound its way all around through the store, up and down the aisles.  I don't know how anybody managed to navigate to shop.  But, the good part is that we saved a lot of money. We got a bunch of stuff for just less than 80 dollars.  And, we made friends while in line! One of them shared a coupon with us for 6 dollars off, and another one shared her cart with us so that David didn't have to stand for two hours holding a tower of items.  And, while we were in line we got to wind our way through the baby section and ogle all the cute little things!

Friday we slept in, and then I went and looked at puppies with my good friend Summer.  She had a puppy in mind at the city shelter nearby (which I totally love- they are a no-kill shelter), but we went and looked at Petland anyhow just for fun.  And it was a lot of fun.  They let you hold their puppies, no strings attached.  I held a little shih-poo that was cuddly and adorable.  I wasn't too tempted to take it home.

After the puppy-holding, we went to half-price books and shopped the clearance section.  It is seriously addictive.  It's way too easy to walk out of there with 15 dollars of books that were "only a dollar or two apiece!"  When we were done at Half-price books, we went to Golden Corral with David and had dinner.  I got to have turkey and stuffing again!  I have to admit, it's one of my favorite meals.

Saturday totally felt like Sunday to me.  I kept losing track of what day it was.  I can't really remember what we did, so we must not have done much.  Sunday I taught my little kindergartners in Sunday school again, and 3 of them were able to say all of the ten commandments! I was impressed.  And then another one was able to say the memory verse as well!

Monday I slept in a little, then worked on the house and worked on one of the Christmas gifts I'm making.  Yesterday I went to BSF, then picked David up so he could drop me off at home and have the car the rest of the day.  We ended up talking for an hour or so before he left to go back to work.  I am so thankful for what a wonderful husband I have, who does little things like that to let me know just how much he cares about me! After he left to go back to work, I worked on organizing the garage, then I walked around the house picking things up and putting them away, then I watched some TV and had a snack, and then worked on my crocheting, and then I started cooking dinner. 

I saw a dinner idea on TV and tried it a couple of weeks ago, and it has become one of our go-to options for dinner when we don't really have anything else planned.  It's where you make mashed potatoes, then heat a can of Campbell's "Beef with Country Vegetables" chunky soup, and then serve the soup on top of the potatoes.  It is Super Yum! So, that's what I made for dinner last night, along with a loaf of  chocolate chip banana bread.  It was filling and delicious, and cheap! The entire dinner cost me less than 4 dollars.

This morning I got a call from my OB/GYN, and they were checking in on me to see how everything is going.  They asked me a few questions, and determined that they needed to see me asap to do another blood test and ultrasound  and see what is going on with me.  They are probably going to be switching medications around and going to the next step to get my PCOS under control.  The friendly nurse said that from what I was telling her it didn't sound like the medicine I'm on now is working.  So I made an appointment to go in first thing tomorrow morning, and I'm nervous because I absolutely hate having my blood drawn, and I hate being weighed, and other things and so on.  Plus, we are leaving tomorrow to go out of town to visit Aaron and Amie.  So, the good balances out the bad.  I am just praying that the outcome of the doctor visit tomorrow will be good.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Long Time No See

Wow, it has been a while since I posted!  A lot has been going on.  October was so so busy for me because every weekend was something different- the first weekend was my 27th birthday, spent out of town for a women's get-away with ladies from my church.  The second weekend was spent having birthday parties- one for family, and one with a couple families from church.  Then, the third weekend was the True Woman conference in Ft. Worth.  It was fabulous! It made for some long days, though, since my friend and I drove over early in the morning and didn't get back home until after 11 each night.  Then, the weekend after that my mother-in-law and sister-in-law Amie came and visited.  That was a blast- we went out to eat at a coupe of different restaurants, went shopping at IKEA, and did a lot of visiting.  I was excited for them to get to see the finished version of my house in person! Then, the weekend after that was Halloween weekend, and David and I just relaxed and hung out, and watched some movies.  We're not really fans of Halloween, so we just hid from the trick-or-treaters (Although it was kind of fun to peek out the blinds at the cute babies in costumes. One family actually came up to our darkened doorway, and I saw a very cute little pink ballerina fairy.). We don't want to do Halloween when we do have kids, so David wants to start creating our family habits now.  I love that he is thinking ahead- I have a man with vision! :)

Also, I have been keeping plenty busy with doing homework for BSF and another Bible study I go to with my very good friend Anne, plus prepping for the kindergarten Sunday School class that I teach at my church.  The last couple weeks I have been illustrating my own flip-books to use in class, and that has taken quite a bit of time. Plus, I've been doing my best to organize and clean my house, and keep a certain black-and-white housecat out of trouble.  Lately she's been fixated on trying to eat my rubber plant.

One of my big goals lately has been to get my house more organized and to raise the baseline on how clean it is in general.  I would like to get it where everything has a place, and gets put there when we're finished using it.

I was talking to Anne a few days ago about how I felt that now that I am 27, it's probably about time for me to start being an adult, and stop indulging myself with skipping chores and such. I've also noticed that whenever I get things accomplished during the day, my level of contentment is significantly increased. And folks, I am all about my contentment levels increasing!

One thing that has been hard, though, about organizing closets is running into items that you know you will never use ever again, but you remember liking it at one time, and there's sentimental value, and while you have it in your grubby little hands you enjoy it so much that all you want to do is let it continue to sit in a little dark box in a little dark corner of a little dark closet, since you can't bear the idea of throwing it out, and you can't give it away because it wouldn't have any value to anyone else.... *sigh*  I will probably end up taking those things to Goodwill anyhow, just so I'm not the one placing it in the trash can.  Although, some of the items might actually end up having some value to someone.  I'll let them decide.

Gotta go- cat is playing with electrical appliances.  And the rubber tree is in her sights too.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Happenings

Well, it's been an exciting two weeks.   I have been doing a lot over the last couple of weeks, and no time or energy to sit down and write about everything.  I've been doing a lot of visiting lately, and enjoying it greatly.  My cats have been thrilled to have company over!  Also, a couple weeks ago the mentoring program started at my church as part of the women's ministry, and I have been getting to know my mentor, Anne.  It's just amazing to me how good the Lord is, and how well He provides.  I love Anne dearly, and I have been learning alot from her.  But mostly, it feels like my feminine heart is finally flourishing-- it's like I finally feel okay with being a woman.  Which is kind of weird, because it's not like I thought I was a man or anything of the sort.

At the luncheon to mark the beginning of this year's mentorship, I also learned about something incredible- Peppermint Tea.  It is the most delicious thing I have tasted in a long, long time.  A couple of days later I went by the store and bought a box of it to enjoy at home.  David and I have started drinking it at night when we read together.  Although there was a new development a few days ago- we made our tea as usual, then gathered up our books and Trinket, and retired to the bedroom to read.  While David was reading, it was a monumental task trying to keep my little furry friend out of delicious warm drink.  No matter where I put her or my mug, she just about had her head in it.  Finally, I drank it down to a couple of drops left, and offered her a taste.  I was thinking that as soon as she tasted it, she would be put off.  Boy, was I wrong! She lapped it right up and then tried to raid David's mug for seconds.

Another thing that I have been doing lately is a new Bible study with Anne.  She has been going to a small Bible study for a while, and she invited me to go with her last Friday.  It's a neat group led by a lady who worked as a missionary to the Jewish community for over 40 years.  Each week they study part of a manuscript written by a messianic Jew (who the lady taught years ago and converted).  I greatly enjoyed it because of the richness of meaning gained from the writer's experience with Jewish culture and fluency in Hebrew.  It seemed to me that the Old Testament came alive in a way that it never has before.

Today I got together with another dear friend from church, and we baked pumpkin goods all morning, then ate lunch together.  We initially intended to watch a John Piper dvd, but we got busy talking about things and time ran away from us.  I wasn't too disappointed, though, because I think that sometimes talking about personal things with a supportive and Godly friend can be as spiritually nurturing as attending a sermon.  We weren't deeply in the word, but I still felt like we ministered to one another.  We each made a pumpkin pie, and then we also made some pumpkin scones (yum!)  David is going to be so spoiled for dinner tonight....

Yesterday was also a good day- I spent a couple hours yesterday with another friend from church and her little children- she has two girls and a baby boy. We took a nice, long walk around a nearby park, and got to talk a lot about all kinds of things.  I loved spending time with them because her children are so adorably well-spoken and say such funny things, and she herself is a great conversationalist and listener. She made homemade bread, and we made sandwiches with it for lunch.  It was So Good!! I hope she and I get together again soon and exchange recipes!

Monday was a great day because I had an appointment to go get a massage, as well as a chiropractic adjustment.  While I was at the office, I found out that the doctor wasn't in because his wife had given birth to their babies (they were expecting twins!).  I was pretty disappointed because my back was in pretty bad shape-- sore all over!  However, as I was getting my massage he came by to do a little paperwork, and I saw him when I was finished with my massage.  He mentioned that he had been out of the office for just under a week, and was dying to get back to work.  So, I asked him if he would like to pop my back, and he said yes!  God is GOOD! It turns out that I had several ribs out of place and almost every vertebrae needed to be adjusted. I was poppin' all over the place!  I went in for another treatment this morning and am now pretty much back to normal.

Another good thing I've been doing this week is exercising.  I have been on two bike rides this week! Woo hoo! I have really been enjoying the nice weather, and I have been really proud of myself for getting out and about.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Pretty Puppies

Sunday David and I got a lot done- we went to church, I helped with Children's Church (fun!), talked to a bunch of our friends, went out for Chinese, took the dogs to be groomed, mowed and raked the yard, sprayed the yard for bugs (fleas, spiders, wasps, mosquitos, ants, etc.), then went and picked up the dogs, got a rootbeer float from Sonic, and then came home.  And then we watched movies and cuddled puppies.  It was a full day!

We decided to take the dogs to be groomed because they just looked so sad and pitiful out on the back porch, and unhappy with their dirtiness.  They just wanted to come in and cuddle so bad!  I didn't want to cuddle them though due to the dirt and fleas.  So, when we got back from lunch, I started calling around to different places to see if they could fit us in.  I must have called 10 different Petco's and Petsmarts, and none of them wanted to take us.  Then I just did a search on Google for grooming in our vicinity, and came up with a shop that was walk-ins only a couple blocks away.  So we packed the dogs up and headed out. We actually ended up at a different grooming shop than the one we were looking for, but the guy who worked there was willing to squeeze them in.  We went back to get them a couple hours later, and they were fresh and clean as little poseys! The guy did a great job, and our fur-babies were so happy to get to cuddle the rest of the evening.










Mack's eyes go a little wall-eyed when she's super super excited! :)


Thursday, September 09, 2010

Laundry Day

Today has been a big day for laundry at Chez B--. It's not been without two little shadows everywhere I turn, however.  I piled all the clean laundry on the bed, and took a shower to cool off, and this is what I came back to:

Caught, red-handed!


A close-up of the perp.  Naughty, Gizmo!





Her Response?





Thursday, September 02, 2010

Cat Update

Guess who discovered a new hiding place last night?
When we first looked at this house, we predicted that Trinket would enjoy this spot.  We made it over two months before she discovered it.  She was hilarious.  She couldn't understand why we couldn't pet her when she sits on the edge like when she sits on the edge of the bed.







Gizmo is also doing good.  She seems like she has become fairly satisfied with our food choice for her as of late, but still has moments when she clearly is holding out for something from a can (tuna, anyone?).  Plus, even when she comes up and rubs your legs, if you try to pet her, she has an immediate duck-and-weave response.  Like she's thinking, "Ack! My head! My head will come off!"

Monday, August 30, 2010

Another Good Week

This past week has been wonderful for me- full of plenty of relaxation and together-time with David, as well as lots of good fellowship with friends from church.  I feel so blessed to have so many caring people in my life to talk to!  I had people over a few times during the day, for lunch and visiting.  I so enjoyed the opportunity to chat, and felt like my social needs were well-met this past week.  David and I have had several discussions about how often is the ideal for having company.  I tend towards two or three times a week, whereas David is more comfortable with two or three times a month (on top of time we spend with friends at bible study groups, church, and group marriage counseling).  I think I just have a larger cup for the wine of socialization than David- when his cup runneth over, mine is only half full!

Also, yesterday was my first full morning helping out with the 2,3, and 4 year olds class at church.  Our church lasts about 3.5 hours each Sunday (an hour each for worship, classes, then teaching hour), and the program for the 2-4s runs the whole length. Kids that age really struggle with sitting still for five minutes, let alone for a full lesson from the pulpit, so the program provides snacks, crafts, story time, and lots time before and after for free play (with plenty of room to get their energy out).  I had a great time playing with the kids, and talking to them here and there.  During the free play time, a little girl served me "lunch", which was imaginary pizza, with bananas and syrup on top. Yum... 

When we got home from church yesterday we ended up taking a four-hour nap.  It was lovely!  Then, we watched a movie marathon, and I worked on crocheting.  I have been working on crocheting a quilt for a queen-sized bed since last April.  I am finally getting close to having it done.  David and I went Saturday and bought another pound of each color of yarn, so hopefully that will be enough to finally finish.  I'll post pictures of it when I'm finished.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Good Books

Lately, Wonderful David and I have been reading together before we go to sleep at night.  We've been doing this for about six months now, and boy, has it changed our nighttime routine.  It's nice to come together in unity of mind and purpose and read and pray before we drift off.  It's a good reminder that we are on the same team!

There have been two books lately that have really made a huge impact on me- the first is "The Hospitality Commands" by Alexander Strauch, and the second is "The Prodigal God" by Timothy Keller.

The Hospitality Commands is wonderful because it gives the reader a nice kick-in-the-pants motivational talk about why hospitality is important, the scriptural backing to show God's opinion about it, and then some good get-started advice.  And, it's only about 60 pages long.  It took us about a week to read it through together (we took it slow- because it's that awesome...).  Here's an excerpt that I like:

"I don't think most Christians today understand how essential hospitality is to fanning the flames of love and strengthening the Christian family.  Hospitality fleshes out love in a uniquely personal and sacrificial way.  Through the ministry of hospitality, we share our most prized possessions.  We share our family, home, finances, food, privacy, and time.  Indeed, we share our very lives.  So, hospitality is always costly.  Through the ministry of hospitality, we provide friendship, acceptance, fellowship, refreshment, comfort, and love in one of the richest and deepest ways possible for humans to understand.  Unless we open the doors of our homes to one another, the reality of the local church as a close-knit family of loving brothers and sisters is only a theory."

Another excerpt from later in the book that I like:

"Truly every guest is an honored guest, a person of infinite value who will live forever.  My wife always says to our family, 'We should treat every guest as an angel of God or as our Lord Himself.  They are all important guests.'  So, it is as much a privilege to entertain God's people todayas it was for Abraham to entertain angels.  'The encouragement assigned,' says biblical expositor William Kelly, 'is that some, as Abraham and Lot of old, entertained angels unawares.  To receive God's children now is assuredly no less honour in his eyes.'"

I just love all of that book, but if I put anything else from it up, I will basically have typed out the whole book (it's not that long).  Reading it has inspired me to think more about the way I treat others, and the way that I use the gifts God has given.  I have felt encouraged to act on my desires to share my home with friends and loved ones, and I have been so, so blessed by God both in reading the book, and in following some of its advice.

The other book I mentioned is Timothy Keller's The Prodigal God. This is another book that I feel blessed to have read and shared with my husband.  We have had many good discussions based on our nightly reading from this book.  The only thing I wish was different about it is that I want it to keep going!  I felt my heart pricked many times by the Spirit while we were reading this book, and I have found new trust in God and freedom from some of my perfectionist tendencies.  The basic message of the book is about the parable of the prodigal son, and about the oft-forgotten elder brother from the parable.  Basically, we all struggle in our relationship with God by being either a rebellious younger-brother type, or by being the prideful older brother.  The older brother was no less separated from the father than the younger brother, he just displayed it differently.  Instead, he sought to control the outflow of blessings from God through good behavior, instead of just demanding it outright like the younger brother.  In both cases, their focus was on what the father would give them or do for them, and not on enjoying a loving relationship with him.  I feel my heart has been quickened and softened through the message in this book.

Here's an excerpt:
(starting on page 35)
"...the brothers' hearts, and the two ways of life they represent, are much more alike than they first appear.
   What did the younger son most want in life?  He chafed at having to partake of his family's assets under the father's supervision.  He wanted to make his own decisions and have unfettered control of his portion of the wealth.  How did he get that?  He did that with a bold power play, a flagrant defiance of community standards, a declaration of complete independence.
   What did the older son most want?  If we think about it we realize that he wanted the same thing as his brother.  He was just as resentfulof the father as was the younger son.  He, too, wanted the father's goods rather than the father himself.  However, while the younger brother went far away, the elder brother stayed close and 'never disobeyed'.  That is his way to get control.  His unspoken demand is, 'I have never disobeyed you! Now you have to do things in my life the way I want them to be done.'
...Do you realize, then, what Jesus is teaching?  Neither son loved the father for himself.  They both were using the father for their own self-centered ends rather than loving, enjoying, and serving him for his own sake.  This means that you can rebel against God and be alienated from him either by breaking his rules or by keeping all of them diligently.
   It's a shocking message:  Careful obedience to God's law may serve as a strategy for rebelling against God."

I would encourage everyone I know to read these books (if you haven't already...)!  They are wonderful! :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Day

Today has been a great day.  I am writing this at just after midnight, because it has taken this long for my mind to calm and the inspiration to journal to hit.

So, today has been a great day.  I have so much to be thankful for.  The very first thing I am thankful for is my God.  He has answered so many prayers of mine in the last couple of weeks.  The biggest prayer that He has answered for me is an answer to the aching loneliness that has drenched my heart for as long as I can remember.  I can remember being a forlorn kindergartener sitting at the top of monkey bars all by myself, watching the other kids play, and thinking, "I will always be alone."  I know now that that doesn't have to be true! I feel that I have many friends and family who love and appreciate me, and I don't think for one second that my present contentment is an accident or coincidence.  Thank you, God. 

The second thing that I am thankful for is those same people deposited into my world as gift-wrapped blessings mentioned above.  I have had several different people over to my house in the last two months, and I have felt so honored and pleased to spend time with them!  My heart and spirit have felt nourished and bolstered by the fellowship.  I have also spent a lot of time talking to very dear friends on the phone this past week, and have been so nurtured by their grace and input.

Also, I am thankful for my family members.  Today I spent a good long while talking on the phone to my sister A. (sister-in-law just doesn't seem to do that bond justice...) We talked for almost 5 hours.  It was incredible.  I was just reflecting on how much I enjoyed talking with her, and it occurred to me that what was so wonderful about it was that there was no urgency, no pressure to perform, be funny, be smart, be anything other than... me.  And that I was okay.  What a gift! My heart is aglow.

And, I am grateful for my wonderful husband.  I thank God for him every day.  He is such a wonderful leader, provider, and friend for me!  Sometimes I reflect on just how well he treats me, and marvel at the man God gave me.  I feel inspired and encouraged by his strength of character, his kind heart, his generosity, his sense of humor, and his general wonderfulness.  Thank you for being you, David!

I am thankful for my little kitties who follow me around everywhere I go during the day. I am so comforted and delighted by their presence.  I was having a sad moment the day before yesterday, and Trinket came to me and curled up next to me, and asked me to rub her belly.  Then, yesterday, I was talking on the phone to someone and an upsetting topic came up, and Gizmo came running over and rubbed her little head on my chin, then cuddled up under my neck and started purring.  What great cats!

I am also thankful for the Spirit.  I have felt such a shift in my heart in the last year.  I have become more aware of the grace of God working in my life and my heart, and He has changed me into a better, happier, more patient person.  I feel the change is completely dramatic.  I still have my moments of feeling blue, but I have an overriding sense that I'm okay now, and that I am forgiven, and that it will all be okay.

So, basically most of what I did today was talk on the phone all afternoon- but what a great day it was!  And, I learned how to do things around the house one-handed... go me.

Monday, August 23, 2010

New House Pictures

Here's some new pictures of the new house! Everything is pretty much settled at this point, just needs a few final touches....



Library/ Sewing Room

Trinket had to get in every picture!

Library/ Sewing Room

New sewing desk- a gift from Mark and Nancy, my in-laws

Guest Room

Guest Room

The new bed in the guest room- a present from the in-laws

Sitting Area upstairs

Little table that David made

Dining Area

Staircase

Half Bath

Master Bath

Master Bedroom

Master Bedroom

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Backing Down

I can't take it anymore.  I am officially stopping the vegan diet.  I have been having such amazingly persistent cravings for meat the last two weeks!  It's almost all I think about nowadays. I've had dreams about steak.  I had given myself permission to quit at any time, and have been taking short breaks from it whenever I felt like it, but it's gotten to the point now that I take a "break" almost every day.  So, I think the new classification is just "eating healthy".  I'm still probably going to limit my cheese and milk products intake, but I need meat.  I didn't really feel this way until I started taking the Metformin, so it could be that my hormones are adjusting themselves, and I just have more of a biological need for protein than I did before.  Regardless, cows and chickens watch out!

Although, I will have to say that the vegan diet was good to me- I lost about 25-30 pounds in 6 weeks.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Happenings

It's been too long since I blogged.  Not that I didn't have anything to say- I've had plenty to say.  I've just been resisting doing it because I enjoy it.  Anybody else have moments like that?  It's like, "Oh, that would be fun! No thanks."

The cats are locked in the closet right now.  I just haven't let them out for the day.  Alot of times the presence of my cats is treated like alcohol- not before noon, please.  I'm still a tad bit irritated with Trinket for waking me up this morning.  She was rattling the doorknob and banging on the door.  Sometimes it sounds like I have a crazy old uncle stashed in the closet. "Let me out, kiddies- I was only joking!"

We kept Shayce and Kylie off and on this past week. On Tuesday they both spent the night, then Wednesday Shayce spent the night, then Thursday their parents came back into town, and Shayce was drug kicking and screaming from my house just before dinnertime.  Poor baby.

On Tuesday, they played in their room with the dress-up stuff, did puzzles, read books, colored, wrote letters to Trinket (Shayce was very excited to find out that they were almost the same age), then ate dinner (fruit and pb+j sandwiches and chips), then took a bath, then watched two TV shows and had cinnamon popcorn, then called it a night around 9:30 or so.  Kylie did not want to fall asleep, and she was keeping Shayce up, so I ended up rocking her for a few minutes (didn't work), then laying her down in my bed and letting David put her to sleep.  She knows that her David is not going to let her get up, so she usually just gives in to the sandman at that point.  Once she was asleep soundly, David carried her upstairs and put her in bed with Shayce.

On Wednesday morning, my parents came over and picked them up around 9:30.  Mom and Dad wanted to see them for a while (originally the girls ended up at my house in the first place because Mom and Dad were supposed to be watching them, and they called me and asked me if the girls could spend the night at my house Tuesday. ), and I had a lunch date with my sister Melanie! :)

After lunch, I checked my email, then took a nap.  I had a hard time relaxing and going to sleep while the girls were here because I was worried they would wake up and not remember where they were and freak out, and I wouldn't hear them. (wow what a sentence...)

I napped until 6:30, when David got home.  We had dinner together, and then Mom and Dad brought Shayce back over.  When they got here with her, it was about 8:30, and it was bedtime.  So she went upstairs, picked out a few books to read, and David read to her, then we tucked her in, and she went right to sleep- no tears, no fuss.  I was impressed.

On Thursday Shayce and I dropped David off at work, and then we had the car so we could go places.  We went to the mall first, and had lunch there.  I decided to go off my vegan diet that day because I bought her chicken nuggets, and she ate half of one and didn't want the rest (they were too "chicken-y"...) and I refuse to let good Chik-fil-A nuggets go to waste.  They were begging for someone to eat them with the special chik-fil-a sauce.  So I stepped up to the plate.

Then we walked around for a while, saw the ducks, looked at all the cute playhouses they had on display (they were doing a drawing give-away), then went to the candy store, and then left.  On the way home we stopped by two grocery stores- whole foods (for some more cinnamon sugar popcorn!) and Aldi's (for everything else).  Then we went home.  Shayce wanted to have cinnamon popcorn and watch a "show", so I put Rainbow Brite in for her.  Then after a little while Steve came and picked her up, and I went to go pick up David from work.

And throughout all of their time at my house, David was SUCH a wonderful husband!  He played with them (chase, tickle monster, with toys, read books, etc.), he helped me keep things put away, he did dishes, and basically just spoiled me rotten! He is So Good and Wonderful!!!!

Last night we were supposed to have friends over, but they decided to reschedule so we just took it easy instead.  I ended up falling asleep on the couch, and then going to bed at 9:30pm. At the ripe old age of 26.

I am so thankful for all the good times I have had this week, and for getting to spend some good, quality time with my neices and my wonderful husband, both together and separately.

Some pictures:

Look at that cute little tummy^  :)

Shayce

Kylie

Shayce was very excited about cinnamon popcorn!

Shayce was trying to hold Kylie still for a photo- like trying to catch a greased piglet

Little Sweeties

Monday, August 02, 2010

Healthy Living

Today I weighed in on my delightful Wii, who greeted me with a reprimand for not visiting it often enough. I found that I have lost 20 pounds since July 18th (I've weighed in between now and then.... don't hate). Veganism is good to me. Yesterday I decided to have a piece of cheesecake at my brother and sister-in-law's birthday party, and then got some cheddar peppers from Sonic (hey, I figured why stop with just one no-no?).  Then my wonderful husband and I went to Wal-mart to get groceries, and ended up taking advantage of the back-to-college sales to get some shelves and storage containers for the guest room. Fifteen dollars for a three-shelf bookcase? Yes, Please!!  Then, my amazing, patient, and wonderful husband put those shelves together for me once we got home, and gave me his input on arranging the furniture and decorating the room. He rocks!

While we were at Walmart, though, I paid the price for for my dairy indiscretions- cold sweat, queasy, stomach ache, and so forth... My body wanted to take the opportunity to remind me that some things are very obviously poison for me.

Also, I got a follow-up call from my OB/GYN.  They got the test results back from my bloodwork.  My cholesterol is not horrible, but a little high (220, when it's supposed to be under 200), and I'm not diabetic (yay!) but I was at the very most highest decimal point in the normal range.  So, the nurse I was talking to was like, "You're not diabetic, and you're not really pre-diabetic.  You're more like pre-pre-diabetic." Which is guess is still a different category than normal..?  And, the hormone levels in my blood confirmed the diagnosis of Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD).

The good news is that there is a success-ridden treatment plan for this.  So, at this moment right now I am infertile, but I will definitely not stay that way.  And the point of all this is not to be bull-headed and pursue pregnancy at any and all cost, but to get myself healthy, and make sure things are functioning the way they are supposed to.  Then, we will continue to wait for God's timing in His blessings.

So, the treatment is a drug typically used to treat Type II Diabetes, called Metformin. They have found that it also works well as treatment for PCOD. Other benefits of the drug are that it will help me to lose weight- hooray!  One of the symptoms of PCOD is hormone-triggered weight gain, and weight loss resistance.  I wish I had known about my health issue back when I was in high school and struggling so hard with my weight.  Even back then I had such a hard time acheiving a normal weight, even with a healthy diet and daily exercise.  I have suffered so much humiliation and demoralization over my weight- it's nice to know that I'm not just lazy and completely lacking in self-control (though I do struggle with both of those things on occasion...  Doesn't everybody? lol)

So, overall, it's all good news.  I have so much confidence and hope and this is all going to work out well, and that this can be an experience to use for the glory of the King. It's a great day, isn't it!

Here are some pictures from our last anniversary, just because! All of these were taken by me with the fantastic camera that my wonderful husband got me last year! :)

Isn't he handsome?  :)

A sunset in Old Town Alexandria, VA facing away from the riverwalk along the Potomac


The butterflies in DC were amazing last summer!








I LOVE Canadian geese!


I used the special effect on my camera where I could highlight one color and mute the rest- pretty cool!


Once again, the special effects....



He's my favorite astronaut!

Sunset at the National Zoo

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Pup Update

Today was soooooooooo HOT!!! We were gone a lot of today- we went down to Lancaster to show someone the house, and then we went to my brother Steve's for his and Rita's birthday party.  Then we went shopping and got groceries, plus another shelving unit for the guest room.

The puppies were so excited to see us when we got home.  They were both very hot today, so I decided to give them a break from the heat, and I let them into the kitchen.  Here are some pics:




Guess who is losing the last of her black fur?! Boo!!!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

It's All in a Hard Day's Work

Today I did several productive things.  First, we went to the vitamin store around the corner (oh how I looooove living in Garland instead of Lancaster....) and got the vitamins I was advised to get by my doctor (the special one).  I got Vitamin D, but I got the drops instead of the pills.  I felt that if it was in liquid form I might have an easier time absorbing it.  And, I got the calcium supplements as well.  Plus, for good measure I threw in a sublingual Vitamin B/ Folic Acid supplement.  They taste like cherry!

Then, we headed home. On the way, I spotted a garage sale sign, and we decided to drive by.  The third one on that particular street looked promising, so we got out to look.  David found a new lawn mower for 60 dollars! I got Kylie a pair of sparkly red sneakers for a dollar.

Then, we really headed home.  I got to work sorting books, toys, and teaching tools into a semblance of organization up in the girls' guest room, as well as choosing some to share with some of our friends at church who homeschool and have kids under the age of eight. Also, Mom and Dad came over and helped. Dad and David worked really hard moving book shelves up to the second story from the garage, and then hanging all the shelves and pictures in the guest room. At the beginning of today, the guest room was mostly empty, and here are some pictures after a full afternoon of work:
Mom hanging up some of the dress-up outfits.

The rest of the room, with not quite everything put away yet.

Notice the sleeping man... my dad worked Hard!!

The upstairs sitting area.  Where did the cats go you might ask?

Peekaboo! They found a cozy little corner to cuddle in.

Trinket: "Hey, I thought I had successfully ducked the papparazzi...."

My main man. ^.^

The entry, plus part of the dining area.

The view from the entry- love those arches!

I just love our new house. I picked out the colors on the walls, too (at least in the downstairs and the guest bedroom...)!  I like how they turned out. We have increased our living space by 250% by moving.  It's big enough that we each have lots of elbow room, but not so big that we could lose one another in it.  I feel like this house fits us better than anywhere else possibly could. Thank you, God, for our wonderful home!