About Me

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I like to think of myself as the 'crazy mom of four'. I'm 31 years old and I love my life, my kids, my husband and my God. "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." Jim Eliot

Sunday, December 28, 2008

I like routine

I'm realizing that it is difficult for me to take long periods of time away from the warm safety of my own home. I have really loved being back in my house...the kids having plenty of space...it's just nice to have a home. I am thankful for the blessings that I have. Not that I regret living with my mother-in-law. It was a great learning experience for all of us and it really made Kris and I appreciate our home. I am thankful for Cindy's willingness to put up with us for as long as she did.

I have been away from home for just 4 days and am already craving what feels to me like the safety of my home. I'm constantly on edge lately, probably worried that the kids will get hurt or break something, or annoy someone. I am thankful for my parents' generosity in letting us stay here all week. I truly am. I appreciate them putting up with us-there's a lot of us to put up with, as my brother and his wife and three kids are staying her too. But I realized this evening that I like my bubble. I've known that...but it is times like these that remind me how much I like my bubble. There is a reason they call it a 'comfort zone'. It's comfortable. I have become such a home-body. I like to be home. I like to be in MY space. I like the kids to be in THEIR space. I like knowing where everything is, and knowing that there is nothing that the kids will get into and break, or swallow. If they color on my walls and floors, well they are my walls and floors. It's not as big of a deal. And fortunately the kids haven't done anything like that. I am just starting to feel overwhelmed by anxiety with the 'what if' they do. And ultimately it isn't a big deal...my mind knows this. But it doesn't ease the anxiety I feel the longer I am away from home. "Do not be anxious about anything." This is a hard Scripture for me. I do the exact opposite on a regular basis. I am anxious about almost everything!

The kids are still up...it is after 10pm here...but they all 4 took naps today until about 5:30pm so as long as they are occupying themselves quietly we are letting them stay up. We are all upstairs in the two bedrooms that are up here, so at least we don't really have to worry about them waking anyone else up.

I kept hearing this soft rumbling noise and I asked Kris if he heard it. He said it sounded like a dog snoring or something. I told him I thought it was Olivia. Sure enough-she is wheezing a little bit. Time to start the albuterol. Hopefully we won't have to worry about her asthma out here. I am glad I remembered her inhalers though or we would have been in trouble.

Our basement flooded yesterday. I don't know much...Cindy was out at the house having to deal with it all while we are gone. We are not really sure how it happened or why or if it will be covered by our insurance but I know it will all work out.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Yes...yes I did...

Kris and I went to see Yes Man yesterday and we really enjoyed it. It was light, funny, entertaining. A good movie. I am not a huge Jim Carey fan but I really liked this movie. Kris and I had a great time spending the day together without the kids. After the movie we went over to our friend Brandi's house and saw her new baby Samantha. She was so little and cute. It made me want another baby. Not want another baby like I regret getting my tubes tied...want another baby like miss the little tiny baby feel and smell. While I miss having a baby that little, I am so thankful that my kids are all sleeping through the night. I don't miss getting up every two hours to feed the baby. But they are so precious at that age...3 weeks...so little...so innocent...so...quiet when they are sleeping!

Kris and I have started watching "How I Met Your Mother". It's funny. Most of our "shows" are on their holiday break so we had to find something new to watch. We chose this one. We just started Season 3. So far so good...

I finished making Christmas gifts for our largest client today. I started Friday and finally finished everything else today. I made my twist on Nestle Tollhouse chocolate chip cookies (basically I just added white chocolate chips and pecans), White Chocolate Macademia Nut cookies, Almost Candy Bars (YUM-thanks for the recipe Cindy!), Peppermint Bark, Cherry fudge, Almond Joy fudge, and Strawberry Amaretto fudge. And by the way, I have the BEST recipe for fudge. It tastes great and while the consistency is softer than what you might be used to, it is the EASIEST fudge you will ever taste. Ready for my secret recipe? One 12 oz package of chocolate chips (semi sweet or milk-your choice) and one can of sweetened condensed milk. Put them in a microwave safe container (of course I use the PC large micro-cooker). Cover the dish and microwave for 3 minutes. If you have a newer microwave it may only take 2 1/2 to 2 min and 45 seconds. Then you stir it together until it is smooth and creamy and add whatever flavoring you like. Pour it into an 8x8 pan and refrigerate until firm. Slice and serve! :-) Simple right?

Here are some variations I have tried:

Peppermint - You can either use chocolate chips and add peppermint flavoring or you can buy the mint chips and melt those with the sweetened condensed milk...it's better if you use the mint chips.

Cherry/Strawberry/Raspberry - 2 Tbsp of whatever flavoring you want.

Toffee - add the Heath toffee bits YUM!

Strawberry Amaretto - 1 Tbsp Strawberry flavoring and 2 Tbsp Almond Extract. Chopped almonds (optional).

Almond Joy - 2 Tbsp coconut flavoring and chopped Almonds. Top with coconut if desired.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

I need to work....but...

...I have a funny little story to tell first before I forget. It is probably rather embarrassing to my poor little 'frightened-of-toilets' Abbey but I am telling it nonetheless. Half the time we have to make Abbey go back and flush the toilet at home. She probably never flushes at school or other places...but I can't be sure. She hates flushing. She is finally used to going on the potty and is VERY comfortable at home. She still has some general anxiety when out in public, especially if the toilet flushes on its own.

Last night while Kris and I were finishing dinner, Abbey had gone to the bathroom to go potty. Our toilet sometimes has 'issues' and doesn't like to flush so I heard Abbey yell "Daddy the toilet won't flush!" We both responded and then heard her say "Nevermind. I got it." But what happened next caused my heart to stop momentarily. It's one of those moments, one of those sounds that tells you something bad just happened. I heard a very loud THUD and then a horrendous scream coming from Abbey's throat. I was sure she was hurt...very hurt...

I was relieved to see her running (extremely quickly for a 6 year old) through the living room. She threw herself in my arms and was just sobbing and shaking. Through the commotion I learned that the toilet had started to rise, to overflow. It had terrified Abbey. You would not believe how scared she was. The thud I have come to believe was Abbey literally jumping off the ground when the toilet started to fill too high. Fortunately it did not actually overflow. But she stood there, sobbing in my arms, just clinging to me for dear life. Like any loving mother, I soothed her and tried hard (it was difficult!) not to laugh. Finally she calmed down enough to talk to me about it. She explained through big crocodile tears that "the water started coming up really fast and her poop was going to come out of the toilet."

She'll probably kill me one day for posting this...but hopefully this little 'incident' won't be a set back with the progress we've made on getting her to use and flush toilets!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Abbey decided to sing her prayer tonight-it was cute. She was sure to sing that she loves her daddy even when he spanks her. And she loves Livvy even when Livvy is selfish to her. It was amusing.

I made a Turtle Cheesecake for a church Christmas party we are going to tomorrow evening. I have made it once before-it was a recipe I found on bigoven.com. It has a graham cracker crust-actually it's a vanilla wafer crust but I used graham crackers. Then you melt caramels and evaporated milk and pour that in. Then you top it with toasted pecans and the cheesecake mixture which is just cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and eggs with melted chocolate added at the end. Then you bake and viola...Turtle Cheesecake. We can't WAIT to eat it! Kris wanted me to make another one tonight so he could eat it but I told him he has to wait for it to chill anyway so he is stuck waiting until tomorrow night.

Now I am going to watch last night's The Office.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Days like today...

...make me miss being medicated. I am trying to relax, to wind down...I have been so on edge today. Kris went to play basketball tonight and it was all I could do to keep from going insane at bedtime. I felt completely incapable of being a mom tonight. I really wanted Kris to be home to rescue me, as he so often does. But the house is FINALLY quiet now and I am just chilling out with some Saturday Night Live reruns. I still feel like my heart is going to explode inside my chest...ultimately I think it is because I have been working so much. I wish I knew how to just relax and not let little unimportant things bother me. Anyway, I just needed to get that out. I think with a good night's sleep, which I haven't had in a while, I will feel better.

I like weekends.

As a stay at home mom, I never really could tell a difference between the weekdays and the weekends. Now that I work full-time, I have a greater appreciation for the weekend. I really enjoy my weekends and am always sad to see them draw to a close. It's already Saturday evening and too soon it will be time to go back to work. I did manage to stay up late last night and get my work stuff caught up, so hopefully next week will not be so chaotic. Kris has told me that I can get out tomorrow after church so I am looking forward to having some time alone.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Oh Kaleb....

I love my son. I can't communicate enough how MUCH. He makes me laugh, he makes me cry, he tries my patience, and yet he fills my heart with so much joy. Despite the struggles we face on an almost daily basis, he is a good kid and I love him dearly. With that being said, let me tell you a little story. :-)

Katherine and Kaleb can read and they are really intelligent kids. So they are always finding those postcards in magazines that you can mail in for 'free' magazines or things. I have told them before those things aren't really free and that we will end up getting a bill. A couple of weeks ago I pulled a magazine subscription card out of the mailbox that Kaleb had filled out and put in the mail. I explained to him that they charge you monthly and we just weren't in a position to be able to do that right now. He seemed ok with this.

Yesterday, we had (from Highlights) this PuzzleMania magazine thing in the mail. I set it aside and continued going through the mail. Kaleb came over and said something like "Oh can I have that puzzle magazine?" I think he just might have said "my" magazine...but am not 100% sure. I asked him if he had sent off for it and he said no. He even reminded me that I had taken it out of the mail. I didn't really believe him, because I knew that I had not sent off for it and the magazine was in HIS name after all. I opened up the bill that was indeed attached and found that it was in his name, but then underneath that "Cindy Bishop" was listed also. When I expressed my confusion with this Kaleb's story began to change. He then told me that a LONG time ago he had filled something out at grandma's house. I told him it had to be recently since we now had received the magazines and a bill. He acted perplexed by this. I thought about it and wondered if maybe Grandma had subscribed to this, so I called her only to find she knew nothing about it.

I really don't think Kaleb understood that if he filled that card out we would get a bill or know anything about it. He did apologize and held fast to his story that he didn't mean to, or something like that. I called Highlights and the guy who answered asked how he could help me. I said "Um...my son is 7 and I did not subscribe to this magazine, so I think he must have." They said they would take care of, credit the account and we could keep the two magazines we had received. I kept trying to explain to Kaleb that just because something says "FREE" doesn't mean it is actually free. But he's a kid and free means free. Anyway, so he ended up with free magazines anyway after all of that, so I guess FREE really IS free!

Here's my question. I have seen my son's handwriting and I can't believe that Highlights would send the magazines off based on what I am sure had to be obviously from a child. Nothing about the situation upset me or anything-I was actually quite amused by the whole thing and I guess Kaleb didn't really learn his lessons because they let us keep the magazines. I have a feeling this is not the only situation like this we will find ourselves in.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Drama queen? No, not me...

Ok...well..maybe...perhaps...most definitely...I suppose I am a drama queen. There. I said it. Happy now? So now it is no secret anymore where my lovely Katherine gets it. Wait...I was probably the only one in denial about it wasn't I? Just thought I would take this moment to admit that to you while I wait for Kris to fix my work computer.