Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Went to Walgreens tonight, which was weird on Christmas eve, but I wanted to get some pictures for Josh. As I was driving, I felt like I was in such a hurry to get back. It made me wonder what it would feel liketo not have family, and to not be in a hurry.  What if I didn't have anyone to come home to. I tried to picture what I would want to do. I immediately knew that I would want to be with someone, but would not want toimpose on anyone.  I think I would actually prefer to spend Christmas alone, rather than impose on someone. I realized I would only want to spend time with someone or a family that genuinely wanted to spend time with me. If There was even a hint of obligation or sorry feelings for me, then it wouldn't be worth it.  It made me analyze my feelings for people that I befriend or try to do service for.  Sometimes it is out of obligation. Sometimes I'm doing it because I feel like it's the right thing to do, or I just want them to feel happy and included, not because I genuinely want their company. I am so Ashamed and embarrassed to say this, but I assume this is the case for most people at least some of the time.  

Then I realized that most people I genuinely do want to get to know better and learn more about them. It's just a matter of thinking of it that way. Thinking of it in terms of them helping me out, rather than the other way around.  It made me realize that friendship has to go both ways. I need to let these people serve me and genuinely help me out when I need it, that's what real friendships are. They are not a service project.
Next month I want to have someone over for dinner that I genuinely want to learn from, and now that I think of it that way, there are endless possibilities of people I'd love to have over!

Christmas Eve 2014

That was the most fun I've had in a long time with the kids!  After the nativity and prayers, Kathleen went downstairs and I whispered to the kids that we needed to make Christmas cards for Kathleen.  They got so excited and we all ran into the front room to make the cards.  Then we made her a stocking.  After reading books I told the kids we forgot cookies for Santa!  We ran back into the living room and laid out Oreo's.  As we ran back to their bed Michael climbed in and said ''I love you, mom.''  The last time going to bed the kids were so excited and worked up that we just laid there and giggled for awhile!

Now after all that fun the problem is that they won't go to sleep!

Christmas is definitely more fun as a mom than as a kid!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Michael's First Day

Michael started kindergarten on September 6th!  His teacher's name is Mrs. Stensgard.  He likes her very much.  He said he wasn't scared when we left.  Michael made a friend on his first day, the girl he sits next at his table.  "She's kind of black.  She's nice."

My experience from the first day:  The first day went pretty well. We took him as a family. Me, josh, Kathleen, Madison, Camryn, plus the neighbor girls all walked together.  I was holding back tears the entire time. I thought I would be okay since I'd been crying several times each day for a week.  But more tears came.  I had to tell josh that it was time to leave because I couldn't hold back the tears any longer. As we were walking out I saw Lorie leske. She walked right up to me, put her arm around me, and escorted us out quickly. It was just what I needed and a couple of hours later, she sent me a picture of Michael that she took with her phone. It meant the world to me.  The day lasted forever and I couldn't wait to go pick him up!  The first thing he said to me was "mom, you're right.  Black people are just theirselves."  He sits next to a black girl in class--or Indian probably.  The first week was full of sadness for me, but now a few weeks later I'm happy he's there, although I get tempted to steal him away several times a day and especially when I drive by.  I miss my Michael SOOOO much!!

update: Michael's favorite parts of school are recess and gym.  He's learned a lot of Spanish words and he likes school.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

All Camryn

I usually try to be judicious when choosing photos to upload to a post, but not today.  Today I am just throwing all of Camryn out there!  I love every one of these pictures and how they show her in so many different ways, although they don't come close to capturing all the faces and personality traits of this little wonder.  What would I do without this girl?  She is such a highlight of every day.  I can't wait to see her in the morning and she makes me laugh all day long!  I love when my kids turn 1.  It was only a couple of months ago that I felt her wriggle to get out of my arms for the first time--before that she was content to sit in my arms all day long!  Now she constantly wants to get down and go.  She loves going outside.  She walks around the yard, plays in the mud, climbs up the bottom of the slide, shakes the chain link fence, and she does it all in the cutest stances!  She usually gets her little arms up at her sides-palms facing forward- and charges ahead at full speed, looking like she's going to face plant at any moment!  I'm obsessed with her.  She's so serious most of the time, but then has these hilarious outbursts.  I feel like we have so many inside jokes and many more to come.  All I have to do is give her a certain look and she'll turn and start running.  Her latest feat is climbing.  She climbs onto tables, chairs, benches, couches, beds, anything she can manage.  But the funny thing is, she usually can't get down.  She can from a bed or a couch, but if it's a chair, no matter how close to the ground it is, she won't try to climb down herself.  She sits there patiently and whines every few seconds.  I often can't tell she needs something until I go check on her and realize she's been stuck on a chair for several minutes.  She's still very shy with strangers, but getting more independent every day and is getting more comfortable with others.  She loves our neighbor girls, Charlotte, Lizzy and Emily, and loves Michael and Madison.  They are so close.  Today Michael and Madison were playing a racing game and as they turned the corner at full speed, I saw Camryn only a few steps behind, screaming and running after them.  She loves having a big brother and sister and follows them around whenever she's not getting into her own mischief.  Their favorite recent hangout is Madison's bed, which Camryn can climb onto.
I love this girl and can't wait to see her personality blossom!