Thursday, January 31, 2013

feeling grounded

With all the illness that's been plaguing our household these past few months, I've been feeling run down - and I haven't even been sick. I've been overwhelmed just trying to keep my head above water with my duties (yes, I just said duties) and I'm barely surviving all the stuff I've got on my plate - let alone thriving at any of it.

I stepped down from one of my Bible studies yesterday. It wasn't an easy decision to be made, but I don't like feeling like I've got so many things on my list to do that my walk with the Lord becomes a check-mark instead of a friendship. I've been slacking on my Bible reading and on both of my actual studies because looking at all of it in one big pile (or to-do list) is just so overwhelming that I found myself not doing any of it until the night before and then not getting a thing out of it - which obviously defeats the whole purpose of doing any of it in the first place.

As of today, my car hasn't left the house since Sunday for church (besides the mile drive to the school and back twice a day) and this week I've actually felt grounded. I've maintained a schedule with the little boys by doing home schooling each day with Jack, both of them napping in the afternoons, Jeff and I carved out some time to get our budget on track after a huge headache and some tears - both on my part, I've enjoyed my time in the word this week, I've spent time with my Savior - I haven't been just spouting out prayers in desperation (I've actually taken the time to listen to His leading crazy concept, eh?) and I've been able to exercise and enjoy it.

I'm not saying this is going to be perfect forever it's far from perfect now. I'm not saying stepping down from some things is a solution for everyone, I'm just saying I've that after a bunch of thought I was feeling convicted of my time management and things needed to change. Things did change (this week anyway) and I feel blessed by it.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

{Am I the only one that thinks this is funny?}

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Just Like His Mama

Fischer found a bag of Satsumas on my bed where they were patiently waiting for nap time when I would enjoy a couple of them while watching an episode of TLC's "Say Yes To The Dress" because I'm a freak like that...don't judge me. He thought he had hit the jackpot when he lifted the bag and they all fell out onto his lap!

These pictures shouldn't make me as happy as they do especially since it's mostly because of the fruit. I'm actually really sad that it's January because that means Satsumas are going to be out-of-season soon (someone hold me).

At least I'll still have the cute baby...

Friday, January 25, 2013

Update on Fischer

Monday's doctor appointment was short lived because the doctor sent us immediately to get admitted into the pediatrics department of the hospital.

Fischer was breathing over 80 breaths per minute (they said they consider anything over 40 as "rapid breathing") and he was wheezing so bad that when the doctors would listen to his chest they couldn't even hear his heart beating over the wheeze. The boy was working hard at the whole breathing thing.

The doctor at the hospital asked what medications he was on (Prednisone and an Albuterol inhaler) and he said to stop both of those immediately and he drew up testing for Pertussis, RSV, and a number of other things. He said that the steroids wouldn't help at all if he had RSV (which is what he suspected) and there was a possibility that they could be making it more difficult for him to heal because it put his body under even more stress - so stopping those was definitely welcomed by both Jeff and I.

The test for RSV came back positive, which meant that stopping the steroids was a good call (finally - someone made a good call!) and we could see Fischer's struggles start to lesson right away. His breaths were still labored and he was definitely still wheezing (it's been 5 days since then and he's still wheezing) but he was just more...himself...and quickly seemed less, I don't know, sick.

We ended up staying overnight at the hospital because they wouldn't let him go home without observing him for at least that long and making sure that his gains continued and that he didn't take another turn for the worse (he didn't). We were so grateful that Fischer got a good night's sleep that night. Jeff and I crammed ourselves together on the hard bench seat (fully clothed from the day - we weren't planning on an all-night event happening that day) and tried to call it a night, too, but sleep didn't come easily for us that night because we were so worried about our little guy. Thankfully he just kept improving and we got to go home mid-morning on Tuesday.

It's been quite the week with our littlest man, but we're so thankful that he seems to be improving more and more each day and hopefully we've seen the worst of it.

Thanks for all your prayers!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

doctor's office

I'm pretty sure our doctor depends on having Fischer as a patient in order to make the rent for their office space each month. We've been in there twice this week (Wednesday and Friday) and they want to see him on Monday, too.

Wednesday I took him in (while Jeff was on a plane headed back home - so happy to have him back!!!) because his bad cough was back (again) and he was wheezing a lot making it pretty difficult to breathe without laboring each breath. They did a chest x-ray because they were pretty sure he had Pneumonia (again), but thankfully his lungs were relatively clear (but they're sure he's got RSV - I decided not to get the test done to determine for sure if he has it because it's very uncomfortable to have done and they would treat him medically the same either way). So, his doctor prescribed a steroid to help open his airways so that he could actually breath without having to work so dang hard at it, but the next morning when we gave it to him he just projectile vomited it all over the rug which was fun.

So, I called in to let his doctor know how it was going (and that he wasn't keeping the steroids down) and they wanted to see him again right away - so we went back in yesterday afternoon. They decided to give the steroids another try (and gave him a shot of them right then and there because his breathing was so bad) and offered a different way to get it in his system (they gave me pills to crush and put in yogurt for him instead of the liquid we'd tried before).

We're two days in on the steroids and he's not really doing any better. Honestly, I'm  not sure what to now (Jeanna - advice??). He's not getting worse, but he doesn't seem to be getting better (and I do not want to keep giving him steroids if they're not going to work), so I guess we'll just have to wait a bit longer and see. He's not sleeping well, a bit feverish, and just all around miserable (not his usual happy self at all).

I'll keep you posted.

This was taken *before* this whole ordeal. These smiles are few and far between these days. Poor guy!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I ran four and a half miles this morning without stopping once. This is a first for me (I usually break mentally before I break physically and take a couple one-minute walking breaks - it's been so frustrating!) so I'm stoked!

It wasn't super fast. 

It wasn't super pretty (or pretty at all for that matter). 

But I got it done!

...and just because I'm pretty sure none of you think I'm sane in the least, I'll just go ahead and solidify the insanity by doing this:

:: I'd like to thank Matchbox Twenty for still getting to me after all these years and making my runs much more enjoyable - Rob Thomas, you'll always hold a special place in my heart. ::

:: I'd like to thank Sesame Street for entertaining my five year old while I ran (I know - bad Mommy) - and for having the letter-of-the-day be "J" today because that's his favorite letter lately and it held his attention so I didn't have to for that short amount of time. ::

:: I'd like to thank Fischer (who hasn't been feeling well lately) for taking the freakishly long rest this morning so that I could finish in one stretch. ::

:: Last but not least, I'd like to thank the DirectTV repair guy who (I pray!) will be late for the appointment today so that I have time to shower and nurse my baby before he gets here. :: 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

just yesterday...right?

As I'm sitting here (waiting for the fire in the wood stove to heat up the house a bit before I officially start my day) I find myself looking back at pictures of the kids from a few years ago. I know everyone always says, "It goes SO fast!" but seriously. IT.GOES.SO.FAST!

I can't believe that we (who were "boyfriend/girlfriend" for the first time at 12 years of age - laughable now it should be noted that he "broke up" with me because I wouldn't kiss him...YAY ME!) have now been married for 11+ years and have four kids. I can't believe we have a 10 year old daughter. I can't believe we have THREE boys. I can't believe that these pictures of our sweet kids weren't taken...yesterday.

Saturday, January 12, 2013


My kids love oatmeal. They don't like it plain - they'd actually prefer the ready-made packets you just pour into your bowl and add water - only I'm not a fan of those because they're are so many added (hidden) ingredients and essentially they are getting about zero nutritional value out of their breakfast when they eat them.

This is why I was so stoked the other day when saw on Pinterest a link to a blog where a woman makes her own "oatmeal packets" for her kids. GENIUS! 

So yesterday the kids and I sat down and packaged up our own oatmeal packets.

We used whole grain organic old fashioned rolled oats, some coconut shavings, crushed walnuts, a little brown sugar, organic raisins, a few semi-sweet chocolate chips, and some crushed flax seeds. We measured everything out (the kids got to make each packet a little different by varying the ingredients for fun) and put them each into a re-usable snack sized zip-lock bags.


Super easy, way cheaper, and the kids actually enjoy making/eating them because they feel invested in the process.


What are your go-to breakfasts? (Jackie? I know this is your favorite meal to make so don't hold back on me now...)  :)

Friday, January 11, 2013


This hasn't been my best week.

We were completely without water (the pump to our spring broke on Wednesday so we've been without water since then). I was missing my husband like crazy. My car all but completely ran out of oil (and I'm that kind of girl - I need my husband for stuff like that!). The cows got out on my watch (literally - we have cows...and they got out). I had a huge to-do list and only a little bit of time. 

I've been exhausted, out of patience, and desperately grasping for some of the peace that God promises I already possess.

My children got off the school bus yesterday and into a car where they found their Mom in tears just trying to survive the rest of the day.

God gave me peace through those amazing kids who helped with the animals, helped me get wood up on the porch, helped unload groceries, and helped with the baby while I finished countless other things as well. He gave me peace through my sweet sister in law who helped me check the oil in my car and add more to it and then had me laughing so hard I thought I was going to pee my pants the rest of the evening. He gave me peace through my smiling baby who, no matter what is going on around us, seems to just exude joy.

Today I was able to simply focus on clinging to His promises. 

I knew that my husband was praying for me (and probably for the mental health of our children...). 

My Dad got our pump back in working condition so I was able to (HAPPILY!) do dishes and laundry and bathe my children.

The cows didn't get out.

The baby is still smiling.

God is good - even during weeks that I have to dig a little deeper to find His peace I'm thankful that He is always faithful - and that He always makes good on His promises.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

what a ham

I emailed this to Jeff this morning because well, obviously.

I love that Fischer is at the age where if you get a camera out he just starts smiling automatically. Little chunky-cheese-ball. :)

Monday, January 7, 2013


There is this song called, "Refiner's Fire" that I have loved for as long as I can remember. One line is, "Purify my heart, let me be as gold, and precious silver... Refiner's fire - my heart's one desire is to be holy - set apart for you Lord, ready to do Your will."

My desire is to be set apart for Him. Set apart means being different than others...being set apart for Him means being different from this world. Certainly a battle I struggle with daily, but deep down my heart's desire is to be refined for His glory and to live for the Lord and what He has for me and not for the temporary trappings of this world (much easier said than lived out, this I know).
As I try to take inventory of my inner struggles, I realize that I have a lot of rough edges (read: A LOT). I sort of thought that I would just ask for some help and all of a sudden I'd just be...better. Better at all the things I struggle so much with.


Negatively focused sarcasm.






It literally hurts to see the (partial) list written down, but I feel like if I'm going to allow him to move in me I need to at least be real about it and take a good look in the mirror (and be vulnerable enough to share) for my own accountability and so that I don't internally sugar-coat it all.

The first definition I found of the word "refined" was this:  



1) With impurities or unwanted elements having been removed by processing.

Oh boy, do I ever have impurities and unwanted elements - but I can feel the pain of having them removed by processing already. 

I've been humbled. I've had to say I was sorry (a number of times already). I've felt that inner ache when I hear something fly out of my mouth that would have been better left unsaid. Already I have had to stop and pray in the middle of something before immediately allowing fear to take over. I've felt the pain in my flesh that comes from putting my own I-want-it-now desires aside and just plain waiting on the Lord to move.

God is working in me. He's working on my heart. But it is painful and it is not a quick-fix unfortunately. There is beauty in the process - even when it hurts. I'm confident that through my obedience and trust, God will indeed refine my heart.

I desire to be purified by the Lord for HIS glory, even when it's humbling, painful, and just plain hard, because there is a promise attached to his work...


1 Peter 5:10 (NIV)  "And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast."

 ...I look forward to being strong, firm and steadfast - I look forward to being refined for HIS glory.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

this and that (once again)

Obviously my New Year's resolution didn't include blogging more. 

Things have been good around here- great even, but busy as ever.

The holidays were fun, fast, and over before we knew it as per usual. School is back in session and I think the kids were ready to be back in their classrooms I have yet to start home schooling back up with Jack.

Jeff left this morning for his long yearly trip (he'll be gone for almost 2 weeks) and I'm already counting down the days until he gets back. We got two four-day weekends with him in a row and we had so much fun on both of them that I don't have a thing to complain about, except that he's my person (you know, the one person who's just...everything) and I miss him when he's not here.

Fischer had pneumonia and RSV over Christmas break (brought on by the continual bronchitis), but we are now on the mend. He was his usual super happy self throughout the whole ordeal and he never ceases to amaze me. Every time I look at him I just see JOY.

Before he left, Jeff got my treadmill out of storage so that I can still run on days when the weather is nasty (and I don't want to have to take Fischer outside in it) and I've been using it (and loving it). But also? Interval training is not my friend.

 And just because I love it, here's a pic of Jeff and I - taken by Natalie - from last weekend at the coast.

I love this man.

And now, this. This is one of my favorite things that I've read lately:

"...the people God uses 
don't have to know a lot of things, or have a lot of things - 
they just have to need him a lot."

Jesus Storybook Bible

(For the record? I don't know a lot of things or have a lot of things...but I do need him a lot.)