Friday, November 19, 2010

Something Is Missing

About this time for the past four days -- after my three boys were at work and school and the house settled into quiet -- a little voice would say, "Good Morning DD!"

I would turn towards the voice and see a four-year-old boy standing in his jammies with sleep still in his eyes and a big smile on his face. Behind him would be a nine-year-old boy rubbing his eyes and his hair going in all directions.

From Sunday until Thursday, I kept my sister's two boys while they went out of town. They live in Dallas but will be moving soon. Unfortunately, we didn't take advantage of being only four hours from each other like we should have.

It occurred to me that it has been five years since I've had someone to pal around with all day. It has been at least five years since I sat by the window in Chick-fil-A watching "my kids" play in the play area. It has been five years since I sat on the park bench and listened to the laughter of boys climbing and swinging and running.

I really enjoyed my time with Jed and Judson. It is quiet in the house today. Even Colby mentioned last night how weird it felt not having Jed to play with. That is sweet. I am thankful for the memories that were made this past week. That is what family is all about.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

It's Just the Way I Am

I believe I have posted about my Type A personality when it comes to closet organization. When the boys and I clean out their closets, we organize them by season and by color. So, all the short-sleeved shirts are together grouped by color; all the long-sleeved shirts are together grouped by color -- see? Very easy to find things this way. This is how I organize my closet as well...

It is not uncommon for Chris to holler out for me to come and help him match shirts with certain pants. And, I have to admit, it can be a little overwhelming and easier to wear the same thing over and over.

Twice-a-year, we will go on a shopping spree for him and invariably we get to the store and don't know what he has nor what he needs. Because I am not allowed to group his shirts by color, I really don't have a feel for his attire!

About a month ago, we were fixing to go out on such a shopping venture and I decided to use my organizational skills in a new way. I was going to know what he had and what he needed! So, for about two hours I took out every piece of clothing and began "matching" outfits together. I started with his black pair of pants and wrote down each shirt that could be worn with those black pants. I even took pictures of each set -- afterward I decided that he was a big boy and could read the label and match to the lists without help from pictures!

When I finished, I had this:

He can now go probably a year without wearing the exact same outfit! Although it's not too pretty, this list makes me so happy! And, when we went to the store, we knew exactly which colored shirts he could use and if there was anything in his closet to match new pairs of pants. Yipee!!

I concocted this while Chris was out of town and stapled it to his closet before he got home. I was anxious to see his reaction. He walked in and started laughing! However, a couple of days ago he came out wearing a nice ensemble - :) - and I asked him if he got that idea from the list and he told me that he did and that he looks at it every morning to help him get dressed!

Does he know how to warm my heart or what?!?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

An Accidental Oversight

In my celebratory speech yesterday, I mistakenly forgot one of my daily fans...

Thank you Justin for reading my blog every day and being a great brother-in-law too!!! :)

And, to anyone else out there who keeps up with me and my musings -- I don't want to leave you out either! So, THANK YOU to ALL my fans!!! Hee! Hee!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Mission Accomplished!

60 Days
(oh, granted, NOT 60 STRAIGHT days) but I DID it!!

This may be the only blogging award I receive, so I would like to thank a few people...

Thank you, Chris, for challenging me to this endeavor and for inspiring me when I didn't feel like posting anything.
Thank you Connor, mom, dad, Danette and Keri for being my faithful followers!

I promise that I will do better -- probably not everyday -- but not once a month like I used to do!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Oh How I Missed You

So, I have been on this kick lately about tracking our spending...

My friend began this coupon/circular savings system last year. I keep hearing how much money she saves and finally decided to give it a whirl. Who wants to spend all that money on food that you then have to go and cook?? Not me!!

I have always been a Wal-Mart shopper. I do not like going grocery shopping so Wal-Mart is truly my "one stop shop" as they say on the commercial! I know where everything is located. I have my routine down -- from saying "Hello" to the same doorman to turning left into McDonald's to get a large Diet Coke and then going back outside to get a cart. I then get a wipey and wipe off all the germs and take another left and head to the Health/Beauty department. I work my way back and over and end in the Produce Section.

Four weeks ago, I decided to try Glenda's coupon/circular strategy. Unfortunately, I found that Randall's had better deals on some things than Wal-Mart. I was going to have to change my routine!! Let me tell you that there were some pros and some cons that first Monday!

The first thing I noticed was how nice every Randall's employee was and how there was an employee around every corner! The meat man was giving me recipe ideas. The deli man was searching for the olive tapanade I wanted like he was going to purchase it for himself.

Then when I saw how much money I saved, I was ecstatic! Totally worth the one con...

Maneuvering in a new grocery store is painful!! I had NO idea where anything was located and it took me twice as long to get groceries because I had to keep going to opposite sides of the store to get something I had missed. Oh, how I longed for familiarity!

Each week I have returned to Randall's and each week gets easier. I would have to say that I do think I am saving money -- not sure how much yet because I think when you stock up on sale items one week and then stock up on other sale items the next it is hard to tell. Randall's has awesome meat sales so I have seen a huge help in that regard.

I do have to say that I think I know the true cause of why people become hoarders...they begin by stocking up on sale items! For example, my pantry has three boxes of Connor's cereal, my garage has three cases of water stacked in it and behind my trashcan is enough paper towels to last six months!

As I was making my grocery list for this week, I decided that yes, this was finally paying off because I only had a few items to fill my already overstocked pantry. So I decided to make a quick trip back to my Wal-Mart to pick up the few things. same doorman was waiting to greet me. My Diet Coke was calling my name and when I turned left and walked right to the toothpaste, I had to smile!

Friday, November 5, 2010

A Gentle Reminder

When I wrote my blog yesterday, I was thinking about this week. It wasn't just yesterday that I was in a whirlwind; it was everyday. I remember looking at Chris Sunday or Monday night and telling him this week was going to be "the same stuff -- different day".

I wasn't mad or unhappy by the end of each day. I was kind of blah and tired. I didn't find much joy in the day nor did I see any in the day to come!

Monday through Thursday, I let my to-do lists and time table get in the way of one important morning quiet time. I had time for my quiet time today and guess what the subject was on?? The importance of starting each day with God no matter how busy we are or are going to be!!!

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, He got up, went out, and made His way to a deserted place. And He was praying there. Mark 1:35

This was the verse for today in the Journey devotional. It went on to say that of all people, Jesus had a busy schedule -- everyday -- and He knew He was on a tight timetable!! He knew, in all His humanity, that He had to draw His strength from God everyday before He could have a purpose-filled, productive day.

I don't know why; but, it still amazes me that God knows what I need to hear and when I need to hear it! I don't know if any of the other thousands of people who read through Journey were effected like I was. I do know that it was not a mistake for me to put in writing my whirlwind activity, to reflect on my mood all week, and then have this in print in front of me the day my to-do list was short!!

When will I learn that I can't accomplish ANYTHING with my own strength?? Thankfully God gently reminded me of my need for Him. We do have an awesome God!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Minute By Minute

Car rider or bus....Guess how I decided how Colby would get to school today?

I looked at the calendar, saw what was scheduled for today and counted backwards -- minute by minute.

It seems that the majority of my days lately are spent going from one activity to the other. I like that. I don't want to change anything. I just sometimes get overwhelmed and wish I could make time stop. That minutes wouldn't tick by. That minutes weren't so important.

My feet hit the ground at 5:45 and every minute counted. Connor had to be at school at 6:45 and I had to drive him. I probably looked like the Tasmanian Devil whirling around getting breakfasts and lunches prepared, making sure notes were signed, reading logs logged, baseball clothes packed AND getting a shower and half my makeup on before 6:30. I got back in time to finish my makeup and hair before getting Colby up and fed and then we were in the car at 7:40 to get both of us to school on time. (Yes, he was car rider because taking the bus would have gotten him home 10 minutes too late this afternoon!)

I had library duty until 9:10 and then had three items to return to three different stores in three different locations. I knew I had to be at Connor's school for a conference with his counselor concerning his four-year high school plan (yikes!) at 2pm. Sounded like I had lots of time to shop around and enjoy a leisurely day. However, I found myself counting backwards again! "If I stay any longer in THIS store, I won't make it to THAT store and that is the store I came here for in the first place!" I was the Tasmanian Devil in Target, DSW, Old Navy and all over the mall!!

I made it to Connor's school five whole minutes early only to have the meeting go 10 minutes too long. Therefore, I was far back in car rider line to pick Colby up which made me get home five minutes later. Instead of having 20 minutes to regroup, we had 15 minutes! In the door, go through the backpack, grab homework, drinks and snacks and hit the road again!

All that counting backwards paid off when I got home at a normal hour and actually had time to make one of Connor's favorite dinners. Colby got to play with his friends on this gorgeous evening. Now they are bathed and upstairs chilling out getting ready to go to sleep and start over tomorrow!!

As for me, I see my schedule is completely free until 5:15pm tomorrow. I am sure I will be utterly bored by noon!