Thursday, October 17, 2013


Definition: the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, problems, or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious.

Sometimes Sarah gets into a state of mind that is (almost) impossible to figure out. After a nice visit at Grandma's this afternoon, and once we arrived at home, Andrea took Sarah's hoodie and boots off. This led to a huge tearful meltdown and the time was about 4:20pm. When the cries subsided enough for me to understand that she wanted her coat and boots back on, I gave in and helped her get re-dressed. She didn't stay settled for long and the crying continued. Despite my efforts to offer her a movie, food or water, she was inconsolable. During this time, I was also trying to get supper made and I was beginning to feel a bit frazzled. I ran upstairs and brought her a fuzzy sleeper, thinking a change of clothes would help "organize" herself. Doug began to change her with no difference in her crying. We tried talking to her and encouraged her to tell us what was wrong but to no avail. Due to the lack of oxygen from her crying, I felt compelled to at least try to help. Once she was jammied and I scooped her up in my arms, she calmed down a little. I still needed to finish with supper and Doug was willing to snuggle her with the iPad and a movie. It ended up being a Curious George game that snapped her out of it. I'm sure it was close to 30 minutes before she calmed down although it seemed way longer.

This was one of those times that I was sad and frustrated. I did what I thought would help her the most and nothing but crying herself out helped. Referring back to the definition at the top, the key for Doug and I was to accept her frustration WITHOUT becoming annoyed or anxious. That would be and is the toughest part of these episodes which occur every few days. 

Finish The Sentence Friday

I'm joining a blog hop that's called FTSF... finish the sentence Friday. This week it is:

The best part of my day is...

The best part of my day is first thing in the morning, provided I had a good night's sleep. I especially like it if I can slip downstairs without Sarah hearing me which gives me the opportunity to be alone for a short while. Because she's up early and my older kids are up late, I feel like my days are full of busyness from start to finish. I like to start my day with a cup of coffee and catch up on my favourite blogs and an online devotional that I follow. I enjoy the quiet and peacefulness while the house is still clean and orderly. Then slowly, one by one, the bleary eyed, pyjama clad troops come down to greet me. Sarah is usually hungry right away and wants to watch a movie. Arianna's hair is all rooster-taily and she surprises me at how grown up she's getting. Joshua is usually not far behind and bee lines it to the kitchen to feed his "ever so empty stomach" that hasn't had food for over 12 hours! Andrea is my sleeper inner. She usually meanders down after everyone else and joins us for the day.

Now, since I do have kids who are up late, the other "best part of my day" is around 10:00 at night when my little girls are in bed and my older ones come in to my room to say good night to me. Quite often this includes my biggest teens crawling into the bed with me and snuggling on either side of me. This is when we talk about our day and maybe more "big kid" stuff. Nothing too serious but I treasure these moments. They are big and awkward but they still seem to fit in the crook of my arms at night. Once we've done the whole good night routine, I finally shoo them out and send them off to bed. Then the house is quiet again, I pick up my book for a few moments of reading time and then head to sleep myself.

Throwback Thursday

 Awesome grandparents!

Joshua, newborn

Andrea, 1 month

 Arianna, newborn

 Sarah, newborn

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

I woke up this morning feeling blessed with friends and family. I get to attend church with all my kids (Joshua works every other Sunday) this morning and be with a wonderful church family. Doug and Andrea are leading worship today and it makes my heart so happy that they, and especially Andrea are able to be doing what they love to do.

This weekend will be spent eating yummy foods and being with people I love. The list of "thankfuls" could go on forever but I won't get into that now. If you have a moment or care to share, let me know what you are especially thankful for today!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

A Happy Post

Just the other day it kind of hit me at how much Sarah's speech has taken off. Lots and lots of words are coming from her. I'll admit, sometimes I still don't understand her and her sentence structure is still very immature but for a good amount of time, she's moderately understandable.

  • She's using the pronouns "me" and "you" correctly.
  • She can FINALLY say her age correctly. She's been saying she is "3" since she turned three in 2011. She never did grasp four years old.
  • Although not consistent, words like "am", "are" and "is" are becoming more fluent. For example, "I am Sarah" as opposed to "I Sarah". 
  • This morning she grabbed two pencils and said "they match".
I am truly thankful for the advances she's been making. I try hard to find the balance of encouraging her to learn new things while at the same time letting her figure out stuff in her own time. I can't force development on her but I will teach gently and provide all that I can to better her development!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Sarah's hair began to grow shortly before her fourth birthday. Every time that I trimmed the back, I was a little sad because it took so long to get where it was. Unfortunately, the era of the mullet is out, even in little kids. Today, I had my girlfriend who has been cutting my hair for many years, come over and help "fix" Sarah's thin, baby fine hair. She trimmed the back to make it a little more even with the sides and cut in slight bangs. Since Sarah won't wear hair accessories, I needed to get rid of the hair in her face. I'm really happy with how it turned out and she looks older now!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Back To School Pictures

If you've seen them on Facebook then these aren't new to you. Just thought I'd share them here as well for my blogging friends.

 A banner I created...

 I love this look of the bridge... I've done it for a few years now!

 Sarah, age 5 years, 4 months.

Arianna, age 9 years, 5 months. Grade 4.

 Andrea, 13 years, 1 month. Grade 8.

Joshua, 14 years, 5 months. Grade 9.

Four awesome kids!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Depression - Part 3 (Doug's View)

Thanks to my husband for opening up and sharing his side of the Depression story. The following was written by him:

"Doug is medically unable to work for a minimum of two weeks, effective immediately."

That is the text that rocked my world nearly two years ago.  There were multiple items that converged on me at the same time, and eventually I was unable to stand the strain.

If you haven't walked through depression as part of your story, it is very difficult to understand.  Depression isn't just having an "off" day, or bad week. Instead, it's months of slowly losing motivation, clarity of thought, and the ability to find hope.

A problem was evident, so I wanted to find a solution but really didn't know where to begin.

I started by redoubling my efforts at work and at my volunteer efforts (Confessions of a workaholic), hoping to reignite my passions and thereby my energy and perspective.  There was plenty to put my hands to:  A promising career opportunity, an active position on a board, and beginning to understand the challenges that my youngest daughter was and still is facing.  

It didn't work.

I found myself unable to focus on the items that were in front of me - my mind would almost inevitably other items. If I was at work, I was concerned about family, friends, or my church board obligations.  If I was at home, my thoughts wandered through the things I felt should have been accomplished at work or to matters related to the church board.  (Interestingly, when I was at meetings related to the church board, my focus was primarily upon the matters at hand. Perhaps it's related to my overdeveloped sense of responsibility, but I think it was more likely a prudent Spiritual intervention)

Red flags started to come to the forefront.  I recognized them quite readily from a previous time of depression when I was in high school, and then from the self-education that I undertook to support my school friends as well.  

Withdrawing from social interactions that had previously been my lifeblood was one sign. 

Losing my optimistic lens for issues was another... I had to really work at finding a positive angle on the challenges that came my way.

My children started to ask why I wasn't happy - Why I didn't laugh anymore.  (That revelation struck deep in me)

I saw the signs, but felt powerless to change the circumstances that I was in. (Yes, that IS yet another sign of depression.) I have always viewed my word as my bond, but I had simply given my word to too many things!

From the time that we started dating, Stephanie and I have found that we can have some of out best discussions while driving down the road together.  One evening, Stephanie asked if I might be depressed.  By that point in time I was certain that I was depressed - I was just wondering to what degree.

I made an appointment with my GP, and the diagnosis was confirmed.  I started on antidepressants through the two weeks that I was off work... and Stephanie can attest to the fact that it was a rough time. The emotional roller coaster settled down, and the world slowly came back into focus for me.

Alright.  The truth is that some days are still rocky, but there are more good ones than bad at this point and I can still say that in the things that really matter, I'm well.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Thankful Thursday {10.03.13}

I'm quiet and contemplative tonight. I'm not posting publicly but in my heart, I am thankful for more than I can ever say.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Sarah is in need of new shoes. This is always stressful on a few different levels. She tends to form attachments to items and replacing them is traumatic. Our time at the local Wal Mart was no exception as I showed her all kinds of different shoes. She wasn't impressed with sparkles, glitter, laces or Minnie Mouse. Anytime I put a pair on her resistant foot, she cried. Ok, if you were there, she cried loud! 

So, she's been wearing this one pair of shoes for over two years and the rubber toe is peeling away. They are old and getting too small. Also, the weather is changing which means she's going to need something warmer for her feet.  Although I tried many different pairs of shoes and attempted boots, THIS is what we came home with:

Fuzzy, blue striped slippers with elephants on them. Sarah's comment as she pulled them off the shelf with tears running down her cheeks: "See Mom (hic), dese are just fine." Yes Baby. They are fine for now. Until the snow falls. 

Maybe I won't have to buy winter boots again. For the fifth year in a row. She has actually never spent any real amount of time playing outside in the winter because of her aversion to foot wear and her poor balance. I suppose one could tell me to just buy some and make her deal with it but it's really not that easy. I know that the slippers won't work forever but until I find something close to these:
This is what she wore last year. They were warm, waterproof and had a nice thin sole. I would love to find a pair like this again that would fit her six inch long feet. 

It was just one of those trip where I couldn't wait to get home. Thankful that there was a teller who had no line up and the kids bought their own pairs of new shoes. Once we arrived in the comfort of our home, I made a coffee and boy did it taste good. 


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