Thursday, March 31, 2011

Because He Lives

I have attended the same church since I was about two years old. I was baptized as teenager there, was married in it, and have brought all four of my newborn babies there. The music style has changed over the years for sure. From traditional classic hymns to a more upbeat worship style. Call me old fashioned, but I still love the beauty of the older style of music and sometimes wish it could be brought back.
Many years ago, I befriended an elderly gentleman and his wife. I can remember going to his house every few months with my flute and playing hymns for him while his wife accompanied my on piano. He'd sing along with such a big heart that at times, it was hard to concentrate on playing. This was one of our favorite songs to play.  Thinking about it and hearing now, brings tears to my eyes as I'm filled with emotion of how much He loves me.  I still love the message this song delivers. The man has long since gone to live with Jesus in our eternal Home and I think it will be a wonderful reunion when the two of us can worship together again.

Sunday, March 27, 2011


Our church has three services... one on Saturday night and two on Sunday.  We've been attending the evening service for quite some time now and I've found that Sunday has become my absolute favorite day of the week.  Often getting six people dressed and out the door by 9:00 in the morning was very stressful, leaving Doug and I frustrated with the kids {and sometimes each other}, the kids upset with us for rushing and leaving no one's heart ready to be at church.  Saturday night services allow us to get ready during the afternoon, eat an early supper and finally get into the van, usually at a more relaxed pace. 
Sundays are now spent with a few cups of coffee in our jammies, reading the news, catching up on each others thoughts, sharing vacation ideas with the kids, enjoying brunch and really connecting as a family. After our morning catch up, everyone sort of does their own thing and we seldom have anything planned.  Maybe we'll go for a country drive, maybe we'll go sledding at Grandma & Grandpa's, maybe we'll stay home and watch movies or play games.  It is truly a day of rest. 

Enjoy your day!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Love is Tough

Andrea had asked to sleep over at a friend's house yesterday.  I don't know this girl very well but I've heard some things that they do and say, none of which I really want my daughter to be around.  Doug and I said she could not go.  She was angry at me for most of the day... right up until bedtime in fact.  Around 9:00, she came into my room and asked me why she couldn't go.  I told her that my reasons wouldn't make sense to her and she may not understand.  There is something called mother's instinct that just warns us about a situation.  I can't explain it but I felt like she shouldn't go.  I was right, she didn't understand.  I took her frustration at me with a grain of salt and stood my ground. 
Andrea seemed to be in a better mood this morning and actually told me of a dream she had... she was at this friend's house for the sleep over and while she slept the hostess' older sisters had colored on her face while she was sleeping.  She woke up feeling grateful that she stayed home.  Being a mom is tough and the choices we make on behalf of our children aren't easy but we really do have their best interest in mind.
I love you Andrea and even though you may think I am determined to make your life miserable... I'm not.  Your safety is of utmost importance to me and I will protect you for as long as I can.

All Mine

I was snuggling with Sarah after her nap this afternoon.  She hasn't been feeling good so she needed some extra lovin'.  After her nursing session was done, she grabbed my arm, gave me a big hug and said "all mine" with a big smile. Yes, Sarah, I'm all yours!  Such a sweet little girl I have.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Sarah's Speech Update

Doug and I took Sarah in to the doctor this morning just to ask some questions about the level of her speech.  We've noticed lately that she's not quite as up to par as other two year old kids and we voiced our concerns today.  He did agree that she's not where she should be *globally* and that he'd refer us to a speech pathologist.  We determined that it's not the receptive part of her speech rather her expression of speech.  She is cognitively just fine and can understand what we are saying.  Our doctor said he doesn't have an expertise in speech so he didn't want to say too much.
I'm thankful for the specialists out there who are available to work with us.
Emotionally, this is really hard for me to deal with.  Deep down, I knew she was behind a little ways but had hoped nothing would come of it....  like I need something else to think about.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Mama's Arms & Sarah

Sometimes nothing else will do.  Sarah still wakes up during the night.  There.  I've said it.  My 2.5 (almost 3 year old), doesn't sleep through the night.  Ever.  Usually she's up just once but occasionally more.  Doug and I aren't the type to follow through with a cry it out method so most nights, Sarah ends up in our bed, sometime between the hours of midnight and 2:00 in the morning.  The easiest way to soothe her is nursing.  So I snuggle up with her for just a few minutes and then she pops in her soother and curls up right against my stomach and chest.  I take these quiet moments to admire her little fingers, long eyelashes and downy hair that is slowly coming in.  I look at her perfectness and am in awe at how wonderful God is. 

One year before Sarah was born (almost to the day), I miscarried for the third time.  I had moments of wondering if I we would even want to try to have another baby.  A loss after weeks of excitement and preparation is devastating.  Shortly after I lost the baby, I had a talk with a very dear friend of mine.  This mentor has since gone to live with her Father in Heaven but there's a few things she said to me that I will never forget.  Number one was: if I hadn't lost the baby that I did, I never would have known the baby I have.  Makes one think doesn't it?  Number two was: why not me?  That was her response to my "why me?"  I never did answer that but it made me think.  I have greater empathy for those who lost babies through miscarriage now.  I understand the hurt and the pain.  I can help comfort those moms because I do understand what it's like.

Now, I know there are people who disagree with how we're letting her sleep with us but I know she won't be in our bed forever and that's just our parenting style.  I am also aware that she is my last baby and although I'd love a full night's sleep, for now, I am going to take these sleepless nights and be thankful that I have a baby to love and hold. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Latest of the Fidelak Six

* On Friday, I had not one, but two refreshing coffee dates full of homeschooling families.  What encouragement, support and love.  Hours filled with laughter, chocolate and friends.  Perfect end to the week!
* Tomorrow (Sunday), Doug and I are going on a date to the Keg!  I am so excited about having a delicious steak to eat.
* I made my concerns about Sarah's speech known to friends and I've received such wonderful ideas and support about that. 
* I {heart} musicals and operas.  I'm currently watching Les Miserables on TV and am just in love.  I'm in tears over the beauty of Fantine's sad voice... crying to her daughter.  My parents blessed me with tickets to Phantom of the Opera, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat and Les Miserables whenever they came to our area. It gave me a true appreciation of that style of music.
* I am beginning to wonder if (when) my two year old will be potty trained.
* My kids have been in such rough moods lately.  Not sure what's going on, but something has to change.
* The room changes seem to be a success.  Arianna loves being the *big* sister and truth be told, I love having her back upstairs.  Six years old seemed so young to be downstairs.
* Sundays are my favorite day of the week.  Doug generally makes lunch and supper... sort of a day off cooking for me. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Tomorrow I am meeting with a group of six friends.  Six homeschooling moms who all agree with home education.  I'm so excited about it.  Two or more hours to talk about curriculum, challenges, benefits, options... everything.  I look forward to the opportunity to be blessed and encouraged by these moms who appreciate home schooling and have similar beliefs that I do.  The kids will have a great time with their friends, playing outside and running around.  I look forward to sitting back and enjoying coffee and friendships!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bedroom Configurations

I have four kids.  One boy and three girls.  Joshua being the oldest and only boy will always have his own room.  Lucky him.  The girls are all 3-4 years apart and that is quite a difference in age when it comes to things like sharing rooms and spaces.  For quite a few years (in the old house), Andrea and Arianna shared a room.  Sarah was a newborn so she either slept in our room or had the nursery.  When we moved into this house, each of the older three kids was given their own room in the basement.  It is unfinished so Doug just stapled tarps up to the rafters.  We found that the three bedrooms didn't give any extra play space.  So a few days ago, Andrea and Arianna moved in together.  That means two bedrooms and one play room in the basement.  I think it is a really good configuration.  As of late though, Andrea has been very possessive of the items in the bedroom, not allowing Arianna to use them.  To make the room bigger, she also moved out one bed and dresser, thinking the two of them could share.  This isn't working.  At all.  So I told the girls to bring back the extra mattress and dresser and put the room back to how I had it.

About two weeks ago, I brought up the toddler bed to introduce it to Sarah.  She hasn't loved it yet so we also have the crib set up.  A couple times, Arianna has slept in the little bed (she is too big for it!) but has quite enjoyed sharing that space with Sarah.  A part of me is wondering if Andrea (at 10.5 years old) needs that unshared bedroom and maybe it's time for the two littlest ones to share.  The only other way to give each kid their own space is for me to pack up a room full of scrapbooking materials, sewing machines, fabric and crafting supplies and give Arianna that room.  Being kind of selfish, I don't want to give up that room. I like my own craft space and it's good for me to have a place for me to hang out.
Arianna does think it's a good idea to share with Sarah... maybe it is?

My thoughts:
  • By having the two little girls share a room, it allows Arianna to be the *big* sister 
  • By letting Andrea have her own room, she is able to be the biggest sister and feel grown up
  • Sarah can also then enjoy being with HER big sister and start learning to share that space

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Just a Few More Hours

Doug called me this morning to say he was almost in Jasper.  That means only 3-4 hours away depending on the road conditions. 
I survived the week.  I don't know if homeschooling full time made it easier because I didn't have to do any extra driving or if I had just sent my mind to surviving the week peacefully. 
Sarah was sick so that made it a little harder.  Joshua had moments of testing my patience and authority so that made it a little harder too.  He redeemed himself this morning when he had woken up early, gotten dressed, eaten, cleaned up afterwards and then completed his job pack.  The bathrooms were cleaned by the time I got up. 
Andrea has been a great help around the house and with Sarah... allowing me some precious moments alone... at the grocery store.  Kind of silly that I get excited about getting groceries without kids.
Arianna has had some ups and downs but overall has been very pleasant to be around.  She and Andrea have been getting along great and I love that about the sisters. 
Only a few more hours alone and then my partner is back.  God created it to be that way and I'm so glad He did.  I'm hanging in there... it won't be long now.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Thankful Thursday (03.10.11)

I am thankful for:
  • My family who are the most important people in my life
  • The freedom to educate my children as I wish
  • My cheerful and obedient children
  • A husband who works so hard to provide for his family
  • Friends who encourage and inspire me on a daily basis
  • A mother in law who has never tried to fill the role of my Mom and yet does a magnificent job of being a mom to me.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


I've never really give myself credit for things I do well at.  Maybe I don't like the attention drawn to me or maybe I think I could have done better.  For a few years now, I've admired the work of professional photographers... especially those who have worked with newborn babies.  In some ways it looked too hard.  I mean babies move and wiggle, they don't always conform to a schedule, they can be unpredictable... that kind of thing.  A few months ago, I took Natalie's maternity pictures- she was my first ever, non family member photo subject and I loved it.

When we were done, she asked if I'd take the baby's pictures when she was born.  I was delighted to have the opportunity to do this.  Well last week, this little girl made her appearance in our world and Natalie arranged for me to come and take Alyse's pictures. That was the most fun I've had in a photoshoot.  She was such a delightful baby who cooperated and was a beautiful little person.  Today was the first day that I thought to myself: "I am good at what I do and I did a great job today!"  I'll show you one peek at this little girl but I hope you'll check out my Photography Blog for some more.

I still can't believe I took this picture! 


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