Saturday, December 30, 2006

fresh start

I'm not one to make new year resolutions. I really never have. Maybe one year here, one year there. This year is different. I have just a few things of which I hope to work at in the coming year.

1. Exercise at least three times a week. The Christmas money was pooled and a stepper was bought. It is set up and ready to be used. Along with the work out bench and the videos that have been wiped free of dust.

2. As of the 1st, eating around here is going to change. Slowly, but it will change. With being the grocery shopper and cook of the family, I feel it is my responsibility to feed our family healthily. What better time to start this with a new year right around the corner. With taking better care of myself and our family, eating healthy is half the battle. Exercise is the other.

I could include many more, but when I get too bogged down I then do none, which would defeat the whole purpose of writing this. I will set goals to work at, continue good habits that have already started, and keep at breaking the bad habits that have formed.

I am looking forward to this new year. If it is nothing like the beginning of 2006, I will be more than happy (last year started with vertigo, sinus infection, pink eye in both eyes, another sinus infection, pink eye again and ended with vertigo in March).

So here's to a new year. A time to start fresh with a big gulp of clear air and a lilt to the steps that will be taken over the next 12 months.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

observing changes

Every day seems to be blending into another. Once the kids' feet hit the ground the day starts and once their eyes are closed and they are actually sleeping, the day can come to an end and a breath can be taken. What goes on in between those two moments is all a blur. I can't tell one day from the next as they all consist of the same things. Work. Take Sam to school. Go to one store or another. Get home. Get Sam off the bus. Dinner. Bedtime. Do all over again. But that seems to be coming to an end.

Usually I do not look forward to change. I become content in the every day sameness and even the every day struggles seem to look alike. But changes are coming down the pipe. And I look forward to them. I'm ready for a change. Tomorrow starts the first one. Sam is done with school for the next week and a half and I'm looking forward to having him home and have ideas in my head of what we can do over the next days before schools starts again.

It has been hard to find enjoyment in each day when they fly by and seem like a repeat of the day before. I'm sure there are little changes that are happening that I don't even realize. The sun peaking through the clouds. The kids learning something new. Encouraging someone without realizing it. A step towards growth, even when it may be a small step. A stirring in the heart.

So with eyes that now see the way life has been, hopefully they can focus on the little things that can change and bring life instead of the same things that they have observed over the past days and weeks.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

before the fall

I lived out a saying Tuesday night. Pride comes before the fall. And the fall comes fast and hard. Very hard.

Tuesday night was the Orienteering group Agape Feast. A time to come together, worship through singing, reading scripture, eating a Mediterranean meal and taking communion together. The evening was focused on the prophesies of Christ's coming in the Old Testament and then reading in the New Testament of how those prophesies came true through Christ's birth, death and ressurection. It was an amazing, amazing time of reflection, celebration, worship and fellowship.

Ed and I were in charge of bringing a bean dish, dessert, bread and olives. Bread was bought, hummus became the bean dish, canned olives were purchased and baklava and pirouettes were ready to go on the plates.

With being the only one bringing desserts, I wanted to make sure there was enough for everyone, and an assortment in case some people did not enjoy nuts (in the baklava0. So onto the internet I hopped and found some Jewish dessert recipes. Babka (bread with a filling in the middle, rolled up like a jelly roll), apple turnovers and cinnamon twists. Everything was on schedule. Bread was rising, dough was chilling in the refrigerator and the oven and I were ready to tackle all the food. I was excited. Excited to see how everything would turn out. Visions of how the home-made apple turnovers would look, dressed in their drizzled glaze. How the cinnamon twists would be with their sugar coatings on, looking pretty lined up next to each other. How everyone would oooo and ahhhh over the creations and I would feel good that I made something worthy of a large number of people to eat.

Come about 4:30, I started on the turnovers. Apples were peeled, sliced and diced ready to become stuffing. Little did I know that the person who wrote the recipe did not include all ingredients or state at what the turnovers should bake at. My eyes were all stars when I first read it, amazed at how easy it sounded. This should've been a red flag, but nope. I just continued on. Thankfully my mom was home, so many phone calls were made. It helps that she's been a baker for years! :) I ended up making 5 turnovers that turned out to be blobs with big holes on the top. Frustration level started to rise.

Cinnamon twists were rolled out and twisted, on the cookie sheets ready to go after the blobs came out of the oven. Not putting two and two together, the twists were actually cookies, not like taco bell cinnamon twists. So when they were taken off the cookie sheet, they all broke because they were too long and thin.

By the time I left for church, my frustration level was beyond compacity. I was driving with broken cinnamon twists, no apple turn overs and hopes that the babka turned out as it was on a cooling sheet in the back seat.

It wasn't until later, while singing and finally being able to take a deep breath that God revealed to me how prideful I had been. How I had been making all the food for my own glorification instead of just to be enjoyed by others, no matter what it turned out like. It's obvious now that the food didn't turn out for a reason. A reason called a lesson.

It was a hard lesson. A hard lesson learned a hard way with a hard fall. And you know what? Not one person noticed the broken cookies or missed the blob turnovers. The evening was a huge success and my flubbed up desserts did not make or break the evening. They were just used as an instrument to break my pride.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Let it Snow!

Today I signed up for the Let it Snow reading club for adults at the library. I look forward to this at winter time as it gets me out of my "normal" reading patterns and into books I usually wouldn't read. It is set up like a bingo game. There are drawings for completing two bingo's and the entire sheet but I'm excited to read some different types of genres. I never know what to read except what I'm used to, so with lists of suggestions given for each genre, I have somewhere to start.

As you can see on the sheet, there are different types of books you have to read to fill a square. Animal stories, chick lit/men in action, set in the west or a western, mystery or thriller, etc. There are also 4 "your choice" boxes. So it is quite an array of books that you will have read by the time the sheet is all filled up.

I have my first 4 books.

One Book One County: Peace Like A River by Leif Enger
Inspirational or Romance: When Heaven Weeps by Ted Dekker
Chick Lit or Men in Action: Rachel's Holiday by Marian Keyes
Michigan Author: Wanting Only To Be Heard by Jack Driscoll

Monday, December 04, 2006

Saturday, December 02, 2006

scene change

Freezing rain for 8 hours. Snow for 4 hours. School for 0 hours. Playing outside for 15 minutes. Rosy cheeks for 30 minutes. Hot chocolate for 3 minutes.