Thursday, February 28, 2013

Thursday Throwback

It been a busy day....I'll leave you with a photo.
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I can hardly believe they were ever this small.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Hey don't have a plan.

There is this look that comes over just about everyone that asks the question,"So what's your guy's plan?"   The look is a series of confusion, to realization, to fear, to bewilderment and then insert forced smile with a bit of -you're really what's your plan?
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I think it looks sort of like this.

The truth is I have no idea.  Us Jagers have been making a joke since the beginning of our time that usually claims to have a 5 minute plan.  And honestly that has rang true for large parts of the last 11 years.  Our entire marriage began with a plan to fly by the seat of our pants.  After one conversation of marriage I found us engaged two weeks later and married very shortly after that.  Add a move to another state for nothing more than the experience and a surprise, yet very welcome blue bundle and you have a recipe for what the heck just happened to us in the last year. And so the 5 minute plan is what works for us.  It seems to be what keeps us closest to God.  Our version of staying on our toes is just an effort to get that much closer to our creator in hopes of maybe getting a glimpse of whats to come from His hands. Jeremiah 29:11
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And so we felt called to move from all of our comforts and love and routine and settle ourselves here in Spocompton. I was under some strange impression for a short time in coming here that we in fact had a plan in it.  That we would be here in the Palouse for a year and then move forward move onward....get the heck outahere.  But once again God is reminding me that part of this journey, part of me following is letting go. Is trusting, there is no point or purpose in me searching for what is next because only He knows.  We have been led to believe so many different things in the last few months that my  neck feels as if it is constantly swiveling from left to right from up to down.  The left to right is the searching.  The up and down is the bewilderment hope and prayer that I can be obedient in this journey because that is what is being asked of me. Isaiah 41:10
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It is crazy how much security we feel in our own comfort.  If you are in your home surrounded by whats familiar thats comfortable and whats safe, that's predictable and there is a stillness in it that is warm and cozy.  Being called to leave that stretches you to analyze where that comfort should really lie.  As I wrote about a week ago I believed my comfort to be held in a little blue house on the corner of a quiet street that was filled with friends and family and love and memories.  Oh boy am I learning otherwise.  My comfort lies within my very own heart....He is with me all of the time and each moment of anxiety that I replace with looking upward is filled with comfort instead of fear.  Colossians 3:2-4

So now it is upward not onward.  And for this Jessica, trust is not my forte and boy does God know that.  He has my number and I believe He has me right where he wants me and for the first time I feel comfort in that alone.  In the fact that he knows right where I am and I believe He alone led me to this very place.  It could't be anymore apparent that I would have never made this choice on my own.  

Yesterday I was chatting with yet another new friend.  She truly lives right down the street from us and happens to have a son in Elliot's class on Wednesday's.  She called yesterday to invite us on a last minute theater date.  I was so jazzed to be thought of.  And that feeling struck me later as sort of ironic in a way.  I felt blessed to be thought of.  I let those words replay over and over in my head and I once again reminded myself that I am in fact constantly being thought of.  So much so that I was thought of before my existence was even a thing. The fact that prepared for me with thought was a plan and with each part of the plan He prepares me for the next.

So I am redefining comfort for me.  

This has been my favorite verse since we moved and just recently it has begun to take on a new meaning for me.

Matthew 11:28-30
"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. "Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. "For My yoke is easy, and My load is light."

Believe it or not for the first time ever it dawned on me how much rest there is in His plan for me. 

Feel free to look at us like we are crazy.  I hope that maybe even a simple shaving of our crazy will rub off on you too....this has been the best in the worst all wrapped into one, but the best is starting to win!
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And don't be afraid to follow where he leaves even if it makes you look a little crazy.

And just in case you are lacking inspiration.  I'll share a picture of what inspires me when I'm lacking.
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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

On Making Friends Part #2

So when I left you last on this topic I am pretty sure I had a less than amazing attitude and had little hope that this friend making stuff was a worthwhile venture.  Once again I was proven wrong and I have pushed myself, God has thrown unsuspecting candidates my way, and I have been taken in by some kindly folks, that believe it or not have become friends.

This has been awkward....I am pretty sure I am friend making illiterate at this point in my life.  I have  no idea how to approach it.  I have no idea what real people do for fun or what to suggest.  When to call....when not to call.  What if you offend or say something wrong?  What if you order a beer and someone doesn't drink (this was actually very funny and ended well)?  What if your kids don't like each other, or your kid is mean and you can't be friends anymore?  Do you offer to help or keep your mouth shut?  How much do you share? It has been sometimes since I have had to make friends on my own without at least common ground like school or church or a neighborhood to lay the foundation. Oh man I lay awake people, I lay awake.

I alluded to the idea I had met some other mom's at the P.E. program I take the kids to on Friday's. -May I add the P.E.program is a complete and utter Godsend????-  Back to the ladies.  Yep, so I met two moms the first day we went to P.E.  they immediately welcomed me in, started conversation, kept the lulls to a minimum, and seemed to genuinely want to get to know me.  It was very apparent early on that they were Christians as the conversation led to what they had done that week and what their plans were for the weekend...these plans included church, this led to more questions on my part, they gladly answered.  I came home that afternoon feeling like a new woman.

At this point it had been months since I had been able to sit down with other women in my position and chat.  At this point I had met no one that I could be friends with and I found myself getting my fill of social interaction with the checkers at Target.  I would chat those checkers up like we were long lost friends, I am sure they thought I was crazy (not the first time, not the last either:).

That night I told Brian about my experience and said to him that was all I needed, if I had nothing more socially than someone to chat with on Friday's it was something to look forward to, it was an outlet and a healthy one at that! But at this point I was pretty sure that the whole friendship thing wasn't going to happen.  I thanked God for the outlet and did not pray any further than that. I fail to ask for more when I should, its a faith issue really....a protection mechanism to keep the disappointment at bay, I need to work on it.

Well God had more in store for me.  I am not surprised but I am overwhelmed.  One of these women has become a friend, like a real one and she has introduced me to others.  She has sweet kids that play with mine and she is supportive and wonderful and fun.  And it turns out we have a lot of common interests as well.  She feeds her family in the way that I do, holds the same values and convictions and is just plain fun.  In fact last night when I gifted her with some of my canned goods she let out a squeal of glee....come on people really...this is God stuff.

I thought coming into this "Spokane experience" that it would be impossible to make friends and after we decided to homeschool I thought that even more.  I mean where was I going to meet people and when would I have the time.  Last night I went out with the ladies and my friend told me that God told her the first day we met that I was going to be her new friend.  If you know me you are aware that it took every bit of self control to not weep in this moment.  That God would use someone to bless me with friendship even when I doubted Him completely is beyond comprehension to me.

These months have been a journey for me.  God is redefining, humbling and molding me into something more than I was before.  There are times when I want nothing more than to hop into my van and drive across the expanse of mountains that lie between me and "my life." But I am realizing more and more that "my life" isn't really mine at all, nor is it a place or a feeling or an existence.  It is something so much more that has so little to do with the "me" that so often does nothing more than attempt to get in the way.  

More tomorrow I promise....this is getting good.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Homeschooling Not So Confidential Part 3605

I'm back with renewed inspiration and vigor and oh man so much to write.  So expect a full week of blabbering and rambling and something that hopefully resembles well formed thoughts.

Oh the homeschooling frontier.  Somedays it feel like wide open spaces like you see while driving through Montana.  Insert green rolling hills, big puffy white clouds and wide open space that resembles what I think is freedom in all directions.  Somedays I wake up and I feel those thoughts when thinking about our day of schooling its lovely and dreamy and promising and the idea of regular school seems crazy. And some days I feel like we are in the middle of a far off desert without water and someone is asking me to run 10 miles as fast as can, the prize is living through the exercise with maybe a glimpse at a mirage of a big glass of red wine.  The loser has the promise of teaching her own children again the next day.  This may seem dramatic but it is tough. 
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We have hit some major milestones though and I feel as if we might survive...we may just be getting the hang of this and I think that my children may possibly just be learning from me.  Which is actually nothing short of a miracle given to me by God in heaven.  I pray each morning that I will be able to touch their minds if even just in the basic barely there required sort of way.  I try to run through a positive thought process before my feet even hit the floor in the morning in conjunction with my prayers, in a way those words and prayers are the only thing that get me moving some mornings.  I feel humbled by this calling of homescholing and right now I know that a calling is exactly what it is.

We have hit tough times on the frontier.  Some days the natives get restless and stage a massacre where I am the enemy.  Other days we breeze through and have the latter part of the day to do as we please. Those days where they cooperate with out hostile take overs, the afternoons are filled with giant lego scenes, fort making and dog wrangling.  These are the days that make it worth it and I know they are getting what they need right now.
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I would be fooling myself to say that this move has been easy for them.  Or that we are even part way around the bend with the transition that comes with an upheaval of this magnitude in life.  There are days when I feel as if I am the restless native that came in one day to stage a massacre on their previous heavenly existence. They miss their grandparents beyond anything I could have imagined and it is one area of their lives I feel guilty about still.  To hear them retell stories and memories to each other of times passed is excruciating for me but I am so happy they have each other. And I actually feel as if homeschooling is actually healing this a bit, or at least providing a cushion for hard days, creating a bond between the two of them that is something more special than any of my words could explain.  And this is a valuable.  These are just some of the moments that create the feeling of validation...a feeling I don't deserve but that I am grateful for, a feeling that I do not take for or let pass by without a prayer of thankfulness sent upward.
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And so today was one of those days of validation sent to me through a test.  Grace had a math test in her midst and she was nervous.  I watch he almost physically crumple like a leaf drying in the fall.  She is her worst enemy at times, quick to give up under pressure, quick to declare defeat.  It saddens me and worries me.  But it is also healing to me as I know that I have this quality within myself as well.  Sometimes my biggest weakness is what appears as strength to someone else.  Sometimes the ones who appear most confident on the outside aren't always okay within.  Oh my make my heart hurt!  And so the pair of us are moving through this together.  She ends up teaching me more than I could ever possibly teach her at times.  And we are moving through.  The math test came this morning she began to crumple but with a few skills I taught myself in test taking (for I also have the test taking anxiety gene) we approached the test piece by piece.  And I saw that sassy little peanut soar through that test.  And with each piece she let out an audible "hmph" as if it were no big if she were made for this test stuff. She aced it without any help.  And that folks was another little glimpse of validation and the frontier once again seemed manageable.
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So it'd day by day travelers.  I am not sure when each day comes and bad days are inevitable but they won't crush us. They won't stop i sin our journey we will push onward and be better for it.  I am thankful for this time with my cherubs even if it does include the parenting strategy "attached."  The word I find to be a bit stifling at times has also become freeing for us.  The word that seemed suffocating actually resembles more Montana than the desert.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Hostess with the Mostess?

Last week we hosted a get together for Brian's employees here at our home.  I was nervous but not for the reasons you may think.  You see Brian's employees are made up of a group of interesting folks with all different backgrounds which makes for a very interesting time.  Not  a lot of common ground there for me.  Anywho that is beside the point....I was determined to have a nice evening and make some great food.

One of the guests was a vegetarian or as she puts it a carbatarian as in she mostly eats carbs, I am sure you know how I feel about this.  Also the group is not made up of people with a large tolerance for new or strange foods, so that narrowed down the options quite drastically.  So I  Brian decided on Lasagna...I make the best lasagna just ask me:)  It is actually one of the first recipes I ever learned how to make by heart.  Both of my grandmother's taught me their own versions and then I comprised the two to make my own recipe.  Over the years I have changed the recipe as I learn more and it just keeps getting better in my opinion...I am also quite humble it appears:)  So I made a Sausage and Spinach Lasagna and a Mushroom and Spinach Lasagna.  Both had homemade sauce.  I also made a nice big green salad with a homemade mustard and pesto dressing.   The vegetarian said she hated mushrooms but loved the lasagna...winning.  I love changing people's minds!  For dessert I made a Chocolate Crazy Cake again my Grandma's recipe with a Peanut Butter Buttercream (my own artistic license).  I will share the recipe it is incredibly easy.

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And here is the cake.  I topped it with cocoa powder. And Chocolate Jimmies. photo 513815fc-7e89-4b89-84f5-7013e6a43b58_zps44275787.jpg

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And we had  a little bar.  The only reason I share this is to let you know that when you are hosting randomly don't be afraid to serve boxed wine.  If you read wine reviews at all boxed wines have actually come a long way as far as quality is concerned and you can get a lot of bang for your buck.  I have become quite fond of Target's offerings but there a lot of great ones out there.  I sent my sister this photo with the caption...Box Wine Can Be Classy?  I also used those great little trays to set it all up.  I will have to take a better photo of them.  My MomL (translation MIL) got them for me for Christmas this year.  I love them.

And so we hosted and everyone had a good time.  One of the wives told their husband that I wasn't stuck up and that I seemed down to earth.....hmmmmm, well that's good to hear. I find being the bosses wife to be difficult, you have to have a mighty big filter........

My biggest tip when hosting when unsure of your guests is to keep it simple.  Stick with something that is comfortable for you, those people don't know you have made lasagna about 6 million times they will feel special because you took the time.  Save your new dishes for those you hold most dear...they are worth the time and will probably appreciate it more.  Also new dishes sometimes bring stress and worry and that isn't what you want going into a dinner party.  So keep it simple and have fun.

And now for the recipe.

Crazy Cake
1 1/2 Cups Flour
1 Cup Sugar
6-8 Tablespoons of cocoa I usually use 8 but my grandma recommends less...I like it a bit darker
1 tsp of baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 Cup of Cold Water
1/3 cup oil...I use olive oil but vegetable or coconut is fine too
1 Tblsp of white vinegar
1 tsp. vanilla

Prepare 2- 8 inch round pans...greased and I like to line the bottom of my pans with parchment.  You can also make this in 1 square pan and just serve it frosted in the pan for a more casual presentation.

Oven 350 degrees

In a large bowl sift together the dry ingredients.  
In a separate bowl whisk together the wet ingredients.
Combine the wet with the dry and stir together until combined.  
Divide between the pans.
Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes.
Cool on wire racks...pop out of the pan and frost those babies:)

You could really frost this with whatever frosting you like.  My Grandma's signature touch is boiled aka 7 minute frosting which is near and dear to me but I chose a more decadent approach this time.

Peanut Butter Buttercream
6 Tablespoons of butter
1/2 Cup of Crunchy or Creamy Peanut Butter
2 1/2 Cups of Powdered Sugar
1/2 Cup Cream
1 tsp vanilla

Cream the butter and the peanut butter together with a mixer.  
Slowly add the powdered sugar and the cream.
Beat for 2 or 3 minutes until creamy and delicious.  
Add the vanilla.
Once incorporated spread generously over your cake and enjoy.
-This recipe made a bit much for this particular cake and so we kept the extra in the fridge and made another treat with it.  The frosting should seriously be illegal and the cake comes out tasting like a peanut butter cup.

And now you have a great, delicious and simple cake.  Did you notice there isn't any eggs or butter in the recipe...its legit.

I am feeling completely uninspired to write lately so you may just get food for awhile.  

Friday, February 15, 2013

Friends are a Great Thing!

Last weekend we had visitors.....huzzah!

Rah and The Brewer brought Dr. Love over to visit.  WE loved that they came and we had so much fun together.  When have spoiled with visits from friends at least every 2-3 weeks since we have been here.

We ate good food, explored Spokane a bit and enjoyed our time together.  We love our friends!

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Grace is so creative and comes up with the strangest things to keep herself busy.
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She ate her breakfast through the mouth hole in the bag.

Uncle Jordo, Uncle Justin and Beej built a train set for the kids one morning.  You get a techy, an engineer and a Dr. in the same room and they come up with all sorts of ideas to make train building interesting.
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We drove up to Mt. Spokane for the first time.  It was breathtakingly beautiful.
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We went out to dinner at our new favorite restaurant Casper Fry.  They have the best stick to your bones, finger licking good Southern Style food.  I also love it because they locally source their food and make everything in house.  Its nothing short of amazing.
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I had a mint julep.
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I also had the pork chop.  Mercy Mercy Mercy I could have eaten six of them.  It was literally the best chop I have ever eaten.  The veggies were also great, cooked perfectly and seasoned appropriately.
It was dark everywhere we went so the pictures are rough.
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Brian Jager attempts to photo bomb every photo I take.

The next night we celebrated Chinese New Year.  Justin and I cooked up a real feast complete with dumplings.  It was amazing.
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Like I said it was a fabulous weekend.  I am thankful for friends that go to such great lengths to love us!  It makes life over here that much easier.  

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Lover's Day or month or forever.

February is one of my favorite months in my marriage.  Its reminders of days past.  Beginnings and change.  February 9 is the day Brian asked met to be his wife.  February 14 Valentines Day is the day we actually met.  I love it all.  It makes me feel warm and fuzzy and nostalgic.  It reminds me of being young and clueless and unaware of reality.  Its a nice place to travel back to but I would never want to stay there for long.  

Oh how I love these memories but oh how far we have come.  How many stories and memories I have now 15 years later.  How much we have been through, fought for and loved through.  It has always been worth it no matter the stage.  Brian is my best friend and I find that to be the most important at all times.  Because it is not always strawberries and champagne, sometimes its hard and sometimes its work.  Lets face it love isn't easy.  It take forgiveness and patience and understanding.  

We have been through the gamut this last year.  We have shared passion and uninterrupted time in Costa Rica.  We shared vacations with our kids and allowed ourselves to be more in love because we have them.  We have reminisced over the used to be's and the can you believe we did this_______.  We have followed God's leading and trudged through the wonder and bewilderment of transition.  We have fought we have made up.  We have been selfish and forgiving.  We have hurt each other and asked for forgiveness.  I have learned more about what love really is in the last year than I ever thought I could. 

In the end Brian Jager is my best friend, my lover, my confidant, my strength, and my encouragement.  I love him more than I thought I ever could.  

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Monday, February 11, 2013


I have an overwhelming ever so irrational fear of being left, of making people leave.  I have a fear of making people mad, of hurting people's feelings, of offending, of wronging, of giving people the wrong impression, of being misunderstood.

These insecurities may or may not surprise you.  On this here blog it is probably hard to see these things, as I am often bold in my words, quick to give my opinions and overly open.  However I so often forget that people actually read this thing.  This blog is a journal for me and it has aided me in getting it all out with little to no consequences.  For I always encourage those who have a problem with it not to read.  In honest to goodness truth the blog has been a therapy for me because keeping "it all" in was becoming hurt.  I often read old posts that pop up, and the post will take me back to the exact moment I wrote it, the memory is instantly replicated. And so it has become safe here.  A safe place for memories which had become scary for me at one point.  And a safe place to let it all hang out.  To share things that were important to me.  I have prayed over it and asked God to help me to be transparent here to feel safe with sharing and so He has and so I do.  I don't worry about punctuation or proper sentence structure because someday when my kids are ready to read it I want them to feel as if I am directly talking to them.  And if one of you feel touched by even a glimmer of my words I want you to feel that way too.  If you are my friend you know that's how I roll.  I like people to feel at home with me and that is how my blog needs to feel as well.  Polished and perfect is so not me.

So I want to be transparent today because my feeling of abandonment has reared its ugly head over and over and over again in the last weeks.  It is a feeling that was created in me at a very young age and a feeling that would replay several times over.  Sometimes the abandonment was real, painful, scarring and sometimes the abandonment was -if I may use the cliche description of - a God thing.  I have been left, I have been tossed and then trampled and sometimes I have just been given up.  The given up is the worst, which may be surprising.  And the given up is most often the times when I think God has actually taken from me.  

The pain I have experienced in abandonment is something that I allow to control me sometimes.  It causes me to hold back.  It causes me to hold on.  And in all honesty it scares the heck out of me.  I suppose its the scars that hold me back because I still feel as if I can stretch so much farther than I used to there are still limits in my trust.  It hurts to say that out loud because here again I fear if I share these things y'all will see me differently or weak or awful or pitiful, the ugliness goes on and on.   Its also hard to say out loud now at this point because as it appears I am a grown woman surrounded by lovely people who offer me safety and love and you also know I will preach God's love for me until the cows come home.  But sometimes I still feel like I'm five.  This simple fact used to make me feel, ashamed, embarrassed, I would hide from the past, from the memories and I would deny any recollection of how horrible things have been.  But its not all bad, I can realize positives things that have been formed in me due to those scars.  I love deeper, I give more, I strive to be a person who can be trustworthy, who can be dependable, who is a good friend, a mother who loves and is truly always there and last a daughter of God who trusts that He will always be there.

Sometimes the feeling is irrational....sometimes I let it infect my strongest closest relationships.  The ones I hold the most close, the very people I am attempting not to hurt are the ones I end up hurting the most.  And this is why.  As soon as I feel like I am being abandoned or I may be abandoned  I myself pull away in an effort to protect myself.  I never see it coming.  It is almost a wild intuitive reaction, if that makes sense.  I will take myself out of situations completely and I will focus on me.  It is is not okay.  It is however a coping mechanism that I taught myself a long time ago and in the situations where I was actually left, tossed or trampled, the tactic actually worked.  But sometimes very of the fear of abandonment comes with the thought of sharing completely with someone, the fear of being honest, the fear of being open....because I worry if I do I will be left.  I still don't know how to recognize this when it starts to happen initially and it really does mess things up.  And sometimes the very thing I am avoiding makes me abandon someone else....that is hard to say.  

I have felt myself begin the pull away from key folks in my life in the last month.  It as I said doesn't start as an intentional exercise but it slowly picks up speed and turns into something that is ugly and completely replicates the very thing I am trying to avoid.  I am sorry to those I have hurt recently or in the past.  I am more aware of it now than ever and I am trying to fix it.  And thats all I can say about that:)  

In all openness I compensate for this fear with surrounding myself with others I push it away by pulling in closer with those that I love.  And I have had a closeness surrounding deficit ..this make no sense:)  I have no one to pull in right now and its scary and lonely. And I forget to often to pray which I am already working on in the last weeks.  But I feel alone and that is not comfortable for me and so I am forced to grow within myself, I have time to look within and I realize I gots lot of housecleaning to be doing in my heart.  In addition this reminds me that my real support, my real belonging is not here but with God and that is a great reminder! 

I will not be doing an further editing with this and I pray that it makes sense. If I edit it any further I fear I won't post it and it needs to be posted.  

This year is about rediscovery.  Maybe even redefining and I hope I have the balls to share it all here, thats what I am shooting for.  I will not let my past control my future because my future is beautiful and full of promise.

Friday, February 8, 2013


 I took this kid to the Dr. yesterday.  Just a med switcharoo and scheduling for another sleep study.  We finally weaned Elliot off of the sleep meds that were helping with his  night terrors but now he isn't sleeping very well in back to the drawing board.  No matter though we had some time to goof around in the mirror at the Dr's office as our Dr. was running behind.

I love this kid.  I can't hardly believe he will be 10 this summer!  He is my jam.

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It can be hard to get him to be silly.  But we were able to get there yesterday. I know these are ridiculous, but its important to be ridiculous sometimes!
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Being a mom is kind of my favorite thing!! 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

I should say I have so much good!

I have so much good.  So many blessings.  And even though I shared my heart the other day, with complete honesty and openness...I just wanted to make sure y'all know that I am 100% thankful for my life!  All parts of it actually,even the bad, even the ugly, even the uncomfortable.

This week so far I have experienced so much good.  Y'all have I ever told you I have the best friends in this whole big fat world?  Well now you know.  They come in all shapes and sizes....with all different backgrounds, all in different stages in their lives and I love each of them for who and what they are!  I have had phone calls and texts and emails and love showered over me already this week and I should tell you it is a pretty constant shower.....pretty much its a torrential rain storm and I am the happy recipient.  

So I've had some encouragement.  I had a couple of really good phone hash-outs to form a plan to get me back on track.  Accountability and a swift kick in the butt is what I needed desperately and I had some great friends give me just that.  

So the plan involves a few things...
#1 - Read a proverb and a psalm every morning.  I've been struggling with staying in my Bible in the last week and this routine will help me.
Dos - Take some time for myself and leave the guilt behind.  I am honestly with my children 24/7 and I am a firm believer in mommy time away...its good for everyone.  
Number 3 - I need to make the gym a priority I feel guilty when I go because it is usually midday or in the morning and then I am away form our house and my kids are home.  The gym is my anti-drug and it helps my sanity immensely   In fact physical fitness is a proven benefit for mental health and that doesn't just come from the book "o" Jessica, its been proven.  
Quatro - Find some friends here.  I am a social being, I love people......and so I am making an effort.  I am meeting some moms from the homeschool tomorrow night for coffee and I am hosting a Valentines Party for some moms and kids next week.  
Five -  Assert my gifts and talents.  I miss using my gifts.  I miss cooking for others, sharing my home, blessing folks with food and running my business.  I can still do all of these things it is just going to take a bit of effort on my part.

And so you have it.  I am making a pledge to be intentional in making my days better.  As I have said before sometimes you have to look within if things don't seem to be going your way.

And so each day starts with God and each day will end with a thankful heart.

Today I started my day with the gym and intentionally prayed for my fulfillment, praying that God alone would deliver me the goods I needed to smile, to feel light, to love my days instead of wishing for bedtime.  

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Look what came after the rain the other day.  Don't think for a moment I didn't take time to apply the knowledge I have within me concerning that rainbow:)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Home to Me.

I struggled with getting out of bed yesterday.  If I were being honest I would say that church was the last place I wanted to go.  This last week was dark.  Praying was even hard and I started to doubt that what I thought was God's plan was maybe just our own desire.  Truth is this move has been so difficult.  I am now homeschooling as you know which is a blessing but also very difficult when you don't have any family or friends around to offer you relief or help or a coffee date.  On top of that Brian has been gone much of the past three weeks, Tri-cities for 3 days, Bellevue for 3 days and Now Vegas this week for 4 days.  Him being gone means I am alone most of the time with my cherubs and say I am lonely would be an understatement.  It has been hard in all of this to be the wife and the mother I so strive to be.  And in this I have become a doubting Thomas and a negative Nellie.  

I have had plenty of time to realize what I miss and to develop that into a strong description of what I think home is.

Home to me is a little blue house, on a quiet street, surrounded by houses full of sweet children that count on me for popsicles and fresh cookies.  Home to me is a place where my friends gather several times a week and raid my pantry and fridge for snacks, where we pack my dining room full of people until it resembles a sardine can and laughter can be heard form miles away.  Home to me is a school filled with lovely friends and families, whose children love mine....a school that resembles a Cheers of sorts where everyone knows your name and you k now theirs as well.  Home to me means hands that are busy and hearts that are full, a long list of to do's, wants and helps needed by others.  Home to me is a church where you fit just right and people notice when you are gone.  Home to me is grandparent's for my children, and sleepovers and McDonalds dates.  Home to me is my nephew running through my house terrorizing anything that can be moved and begging me for fresh snacks.  Home is being part of a community that is made up of strong give and takes, support, love and laughter.

I suppose you can say that I have been homesick and it has developed into a bit of sepsis.  The sepsis has infected my every movement, I have allowed it to rob me of simple joys and this existence here has become a bit of a routine rather than a life.  

Well Sunday's are important.  The routine of it is sometimes what gets us there and it is so important to me that my kids get there every week. That they are at least somewhat in part a part of something bigger.  That they are fed the promises they so much need.  That they feel untied in fellowship with others.  And so  yesterday I pulled my miserable bum out of bed, got dressed and we all went on our way.  I felt grumpy on the way to church....which is the wrong way to feel.  I was just sure that I would feel like that through the whole service.  But what I forgot that God is bigger than my grouchy heart. And what do you know the sermon was on the concept of "home" and what that means to us as Christians.  And boy did I need to hear it.  It is a sermon I have heard dozens of times....we all know where our one true home really is and it can't be found here.  I was reminded that my home is with God in heaven and this is all just temporal.  That so much of what I long for can be found with Him and in Him alone.  And to tell you the truth i had avoided Him most of the past week.  It hurt to much to pray or to read my Bible.

I was reminded yesterday of another time that I had felt this way.  Before we moved into our little blue house we moved into a little apartment in Bellingham.  I was pregnant with Grace, sick, on bed rest, chasing an almost 2 year old busy boy around and house shopping.  I didn't want to be in that apartment, I didn't want to be sick, I wanted my toddler to take a nap, but most of all I was searching for this feeling of home.  I remember during this time every time I would stop and pray I would weep.  I would weep the whole time I prayed, every time I opened my Bible the same emotion would happen, I would weep as soon as I opened the cover. I would weep because I felt I was missing something and believe that something was God.  It was a hard time, one that I look back on with a mix of emotions.  In fact it is a time I can now think back on and be thankful for. In the end God blessed me immeasurably.  In that new home he created for us we were able to experience so many things...good, bad, sad and happy. 

And I suppose that this chapter I am currently in is very reminiscent of my time then 8 years ago.  I was waiting for something but I was choosing to wait with God for that something to happen. And there lies the difference between then and now, I was waiting with God.  

Yesterday was a hard one.  I struggled with what I had been feeling and where I needed to be.  And so now I move forward.  I move forward with God and I am again weeping in my Bible but I will get through.  I am not sure how, but the good thing is that God does.  There is so much uncertainty and that has been my excuse to disconnect.  I had been given so much stability in that little blue house and I suppose there inlies its very own problem.  God is not only my stability, my comfort, my strength, my community but He is my HOME.

Yesterday ended so well.  I got bold and I invited another family form school over to watch the Super Bowl.  The four of us were so excited for this time to fellowship.  I was able to cook and clean in preparation for others.  Grace decorated the house with "football" decorations.  And Elliot got out all sorts of toys to entertain the kids.  And we had a glorious time.  God blessed us with people we had things in common with.  Children for my children to play with.  And an all around great even spent with others.  And I didn't forget to thank Him for it!  

My heavenly home is settled and I trust that we can be given an earthly one too in time.

Friday, February 1, 2013

On making friends.

Here's the dealio.

Number 1 - I didn't want new friends....bad attitude that I am trying to fix.

Number 2 - It's hard work and takes much effort.

Number 3 - It's easy to go unnoticed and fly under the radar.

Number 4 - It feels very isolating when no one knows you and has no reason to.

Number 5 - I met some new moms at PE last week.  They were both knitting and seem to enjoy a lot of the same things that I do.

Number 6 - How do you ask.....Do you enjoy harvesting your own food?  Aka do you kill your own chickens?

Number 7 - I do have one friend here her name is Katrina and we don't have tons in common but she is super fun and I really enjoy her company.  She works with Brian.

Number 8 - I have a hard time justifying surface level relationship.

Number 9 - Making connections when you know leaving is inevitable is hard for me to wrap my mind around.

Number 10 - I miss my homies!

Today we are going to PE and a skating activity that takes place the first Friday of every month.  We have pretty huge goals set by the state for physical fitness so it is nice to have scheduled weekly activities to get those minutes completed for homeschooling.  Anyway I am hoping to meet some potential acquaintances.  It is so awkward and weird and I am used to being fairly sheltered in my friend making environment.  I usually know the root of most people I come in contact with.  And so I guess I even struggle with appropriate topics of discussion.  And so I confess I am nearly friend making illiterate and I miss my homies.

This was a fairly random blabber of a post.....stretching to the classification of word vomit.  Sorry its what I got today.

I will leave you with a text conversation I had with my mom yesterday.

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