Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Wing Spreading, No Cops, Job Search, No Feeling in Fingers

Days in the Life...

Monday morning (the end of October) I got super serious about my job search and left to go reapply at Hobby Lobby, and then apply at Mardel's as well. The managers were rather difficult to read. I couldn't tell if it had been a good thing for me to follow up again or not.

After that I sat in Starbucks with a pumpkin spice latte and read a personal development book for a bit.

At home I applied online at Old Navy and also sent in an inquiry to a coffeeshop. Having done all I could think to do, I got to sit back and pray that God would open up a job wherever He wanted me to be and in that I had peace. 

I think everyone else had a pretty normal day at home. 

We do not celebrate Halloween, so that evening we watched some "Shark Tank" and then Chloe and I stayed up late talking and rolling on the floor laughing hysterically

Also, Christian wanted me to mention that he and I arm-wrestled and he was able to beat my left arm. I still got him down with my right arm, but it was a challenge. My days are numbered, he has told me, and I think I agree.  

Tuesday we had little miss Sofia for the day. She arrived at 6:15 and was super quiet! Naps are not her thing so I was grateful to have some help from the littles whenever they were not doing school. 

While Gabe was at gym Ava and Mia went to play with friends. 

After Sofia left I headed out to go babysit other babies until late that night. It was a long day, but all the kids were good and I didn't get too worn out. Actually, maybe I did... 

Wednesday I slept in I helped the kids with math because Mom was somewhere else...maybe at Bible study...something like that. 

I also took Ava and Mia to their gymnastics class. Usually Chloe takes them, but she had several college deadlines and cinnamon rolls to make. 

At home I took a nap for the second day in a row. So, yeah, I was worn out... 

That night we were all home so we had dinner and then watched "Love Takes Wing." 

Thursday Sofia arrived dark and early for the day again. 

Mom reading aloud to the kids during school time.

Once the littles were done with school they were extremely helpful with keeping little miss entertained which was wonderful! 

Several days that week Christian and Nana spent a lot of time together working on a personality thingy and talking through what Christian wants to work towards. It was super helpful for him and Mom and Dad, and he and Nana enjoyed their time together. 

Gabe had gym as usual that afternoon/evening. 

Mia and I played ERS and she did a good job holding her own. 

Friday wasn't that exciting during the day except that everyone had a pretty constant stream of activity and things not going exactly to plan...!

In the evening we all gathered with Dad's side of the family to celebrate Grandpa's birthday. The cousins were so excited to play that they almost missed dinner! 

I left from there to go to Bible study.

Saturday Grandfather and Christian were up and out before dawn to go hunting for a bit, opening day of deer season. 

They were out for a few hours, but didn't see anything worth shooting. Plus they both had plans for the rest of the day so neither of them really wanted to get something and then have to cancel their other plans to clean it and process it and whatever else you have to do with a dead deer. They enjoyed their time together, though. 

Once they got back Christian rushed to get ready to leave with Chloe and me. We drove all the way to Weatherford, which takes forever and a half to get to, to spend the day with Micah's family. I actually really enjoyed the drive, even though Chloe played Country music the entire drive. *wink, wink* 

About halfway there aka in the middle of nowhere I realized drinking a quart of water and a cup of coffee before we left was a terrible idea. 

Once we got there we enjoyed visiting the rest of the morning and then going to Chick-fil-a for lunch. Guess who picked the lunch spot?

We made a couple of other stops, including a Christmas craft fair thing and a basketball game.

Then we drove to church in time for me to sing for house of prayer and the service. 

Mom and Ava had left for a special girls' weekend in Denton and Dad wasn't feeling well, so no one else came to church with us. 

Sunday we made brunch and then watched "The Passion Live" from last year's Easter special. I hadn't ever gotten to see it and it was really good! 

We had a super laid back day. In between resting we watched movies and other recorded tv shows. We also had ice cream and cake, because, you know, it needed to be eaten... 

I also played Christian's guitar for a bit. I taught myself two chords, but I had to trade all feeling in two of my fingers to get that knowledge. 

It was a great day.

The Herd: Quoted 

"I want to go by myself too so I can spread my wings without bumping into someone I already know." -Chloe

"What's the speed limit here? I haven't seen any signs!" -Me to Chloe in the middle of nowhere.
"I have no idea, but probably about 65 or 70. Since there are no cops you're good, though." -Chloe

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Bad Burn, Passing Out, Cheerio Dance, Seven Year Old Wisdom, And Guilt Appreciated

Days in the Life...

Monday morning I woke up to someone crying very hard. Once I realized I wasn't dreaming I got downstairs super fast, half asleep, wondering who had died. Thankfully, nobody had, but Mom had badly burned her hand.

Dad and Ava had gotten to her first, so it was already in a bowl of cool water and Dad was looking up what to do. I started rubbing Mom's back and supporting her arm while praying.

After about two minutes I started not feeling good and realized I was about to pass out. Ava took my place and I crawled to the couch to lay down before I fell down.

I don't know if I got up too fast, or was dehydrated, or if hearing Dad read the burn descriptions made me sick. It was bad, though,

So, rewind 15 minutes. Mom got up and went to the kitchen to make herself tea. She thought there was water already in the kettle, so she turned the kettle on. When she went to pour the water, she realized there wasn't any and so naturally began filling the HOT kettle with water.

Obviously, that didn't go well.

The steam hit the back of her hand right away and burned it. She put it under the cool water right away and Ava was already awake doing school. Pretty quickly, though, Mom said she needed Dad and that's when I woke up to sobbing.

Mom was so frustrated at herself and kept saying, "It was my fault, I hadn't had coffee, yet."

The others gradually began appearing. Mom was still crying softly and Dad was deciding that they needed to go to the doctor. Nana came over to see and agreed as did one of our neighbors who is a burn nurse.

So Mom and Dad left around 8:30 and the rest of us moved on with our morning.

I put dinner in the crockpot and then exercised. Yeah, so lifting weights was a bad idea...

It wasn't until noon that I finally started feeling like I could do stuff without becoming very lightheaded. Weight lifting was definitely a bad idea. I still have no idea what was going on with me that day.

The kids played outside and Mia decided to take out the driveway with her face.

Over the course of the week 
it started looking a lot worse than this. 

Mom and Dad got back around lunch time with heavy-duty pain medication and burn cream and bandages. It was a second degree burn so I will not be sharing any pictures as they make me woozy. And surely I'm not the only one who has trouble with injuries. 

As long as Mom kept her hand in water she could tolerate the pain. She stayed in bed and rested while we all continued with our day and checked on her every so often. 

I ran some errands for Dad and then laid down for a few minutes before going to babysit for the small group. 

Tuesday Mom stayed in bed, but didn't need to have her hand in water all the time. The medication made her feel not very good, but she was a trooper. 

I took Christian and Ava to their orthodontist appointment and Gabe and Mia did what school they could on their own. 

In the evening I babysat Sofia, and Gabe had gym. Chloe did a good job taking care of the kids and making dinner while we were gone. 

Wednesday I spent the morning having coffee and then lunch with a friend and then went to get Ava and Mia from gymnastics and run a few errands for Dad. 

At home Chloe had been baking cinnamon rolls and the house smelled amazing!! She is selling pans to earn money for her car and college classes. 

I made some banana bread and learned I should probably wear an apron. 

Exhibit A.

Dad picked up dinner for us and we had a movie/tv night to end the day.

Thursday Mom was finally starting to feel some better, but her hand looked awful. 

The morning sky was so beautiful!

I had my worship time and Bible study in the afternoon and came home to make dinner. Gabe went to gym.

Burrito casserole.

Friday was another sweet day with my favorite little girls. Blaire woke up a little early, so she and I sat on the porch, her all wrapped up, and me with my coffee, to enjoy the morning. Kate woke up happy as could be a little later. 

I then began the day officially with a bang... Aka, I bang my head into a cabinet while trying to grab one of the dogs. And yes, I had a bruise for the rest of the day. 

She looks chunky in pictures,
but she is actually super tiny. 

Happy Kate.

Her faces are the cutest!

So are her's. *heart eyes*

Yes, that would be Kate dancing in the midst 
of the cheerios she dumped all over the floor.

It was a long day, but I loved every minute of it. Well, almost every minute.

At home we had our family movie night and watched "Love Takes Wing" (I think). 

Saturday was full! We slept in as usual, but then everyone had things to do. Mom was well enough to go have breakfast with a friend, Dad worked outside, Christian went target shooting with Grandfather, the littles played, and Chloe did stuff...

I had my Bible time and then took my car to get an oil change. Then I got gas and came home to wash it with Christian's help. He had just finished washing one of our other cars, so it was perfect timing. 

"...since the creation His invisible attributes are seen..."

After all that we started cleaning up for church. Rebecca and Micah then came over to hang out before we left and then went to church with us. 

I was asked to sing during house of prayer and for worship during church. The service was very sweet and finished with the entire body joining hands to pray all together. 

Jake was going to met us at church, but got held up and arrived at the end of the service. 

We all visited for a while and then all the little kids went outside with us to learn swing dancing. It was SO fun to teach them! 

Mom, Dad, and the littles went home after a bit as Dad was starting to not feel well, but the rest of us went to get dinner at Rosa's. Somehow our two groups ended up at different Rosa's 15 minutes apart and we had to go ahead and eat where we ended up. We had to laugh that our communication had been so bad and that our plans had not worked the way we thought they would at all. It was still a good night, though. 

Sunday was very restful and laid back, with FPU class in the evening. 

That Moment When...

Christian buys an entire pan of cinnamon rolls from Chloe for himself.

The Herd: Quoted 

"You look really pretty today, like always." -Mia
"Well, thank you." -Me
"I think you are exactly how you are supposed to be, all pretty and creative and stuff, just like I always wanted to be." -Mia 
"That's because God made me that way." -Me
"Yeah, I know. And I think I'm going to stop trying to be like other people and just be who God made me to be too." -Mia

"Do y'all want some of my cinnamon rolls? I feel bad eating them in front of y'all." -Christian
"Well thank you, we appreciate your guilt." -Chloe 

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Early Wakeup Call, My New Name, "Priceless", and Bad Siri

Days in the Life...

Monday was another normal start to the week!

When everyone is home in the morning (aka when I am not out early to nanny) we all try to eat breakfast together and before everyone seriously starts on their day, we make sure everyone knows what everyone else has to do that day and then pray over it and any other current prayer requests.

Of course, half of us are early-risers, and so by the time we are eating Ava and Mia have already done about half of their schoolwork and Mom and I have had a productive hour to ourselves. (Usually.)

I did some cleaning and laundry and exercised and such and in the afternoon ran errands for Dad and went to get my car's brake light fixed. This one place I go to in Justin always gives me special treatment. This time they didn't even charge me! (It only took them five minutes to switch out the 99 cent lightbulb, but still!)

I babysat for small group that night.

Blaire loves her fingers.

The "craft" ended up getting eaten rather than put together. 
(Marshmallows and fruit loops.)

Tuesday was pretty quiet. After lunch all of us kids danced for a bit and tried to figure out some new moves for swing dancing. I found a "simple" one and it took Chloe and me 20 minutes to finally sort of get it. We had fun though! One time, just ONE time, we tried a dip, but I ended up on the ground after .3 seconds. 

I took Christian to his drive time for driver's ed and then dropped Gabe off for gym. For some reason most of the others weren't home that night, so while Dad was in and out doing stuff, he and I watched "Fixer Upper" and bemoaned the fact that the very last season is currently being filmed. 

Wednesday I had another good day with Kate and Blaire. They were both FULL of smiles and giggles all day long, which was super adorable. 

Sweet sisters. 

Sleepy baby. 

I have been teaching Kate to say "Hey y'all," "Bye y'all," "Love y'all," and "Love ya sister," all of which she says with the cutest Texan accent. She also likes to walk around saying "Kate 'dor'ble," "Kate bee'ful," "Kate p'ecious." 

I got home just in time for our engagement group to arrive. One of the families had just moved so that night Chloe, Christy, and I kept all the little kids at our house after dinner, while the older kids and adults went to go help unpack and clean and do whatever else needed being done at the new house. 

More time with a baby!

Thursday Chloe and I left mid-morning to go apply for jobs at Hobby Lobby. Christy works at the one where we placed applications so she was able to get off for lunch and go to visit at Starbucks with us for a few minutes. We had so much fun talking and laughing. One point of laughter was how violently my hair was blowing in the wind, so that it looked like a big flag (and kept getting in my mouth). Another was the spelling of my name on my drink of choice, a pumpkin spice latte. 

You've got to appreciate the effort and creativity...

Back at home Chloe and had class work and such and I had my own things to work on. 

Directly after dinner, Chloe, Christian, and I all headed out to meet Christy and Joe to see the new movie "Priceless" by For King and Country. 



It definitely deserves it's PG13 rating, but mostly just because of the topic. It is very well done and I would absolutely recommend it. 

Of course we visited in the parking lot afterwards for a little while and tried to take some decent pictures. 

The one good one. 
(All others were photo bombed by the boys. *wink*)

Friday Kate and Blaire came to our house for the day. I was hoping they would arrive and go back to bed so that I could get more sleep and so that maybe no one else would have to also be awakened at 6:15 in the morning. However, both girls arrived and began wailing, so everyone went ahead and started the day a little earlier than usual. 

Everyone was very excited to get to see the girls and give them lots of snuggles. 

Mom and the littles went to a pumpkin patch for the morning and had a lovely time. The weather here is still hitting the 70s and 80s easily, so it doesn't feel like fall yet, but being outside is nice. 

While Blaire slept... 

The girls had a pretty good day, aside from the fact that naps didn't go quite so well as at home. But Kate thoroughly enjoyed all the attention she received and everyone cuddled Blaire at least once if not twice during the day. 

When it was time for them to leave we had to collect their mountain of stuff from literally almost every single room in the house. Babies come with a ton of baggage, y'all!! But they are totally worth it, of course. *smile*

As soon as the girls left I had to race out the door myself to get to a Bible study. 

Long story short. If Siri tells you she can save you 16 minutes by taking you on highways you've never been on that are red-zone traffic and completely torn up with construction, don't believe her. 

It took me two hours to get to my friend's house by the time I got rerouted into all of that and made half a dozen wrong turns. 

The plus side was the sunset was gorgeous!! And I had nice music to listen to. And I didn't end up being too terribly late. Needless to say, though, I was very glad when I did finally arrive. 

The Bible study was very encouraging and I enjoyed getting to meet some new college kids. 

Because I'd had a long day, I just stayed the night with my friend and didn't worry about driving home after 10:00 pm. 

Saturday morning I woke up at my friend's house and got to visit with her and her family for a bit before heading back home. 

At home Dad and the other kids were in the process of deep clearing and cleaning our garage and Mom was doing the grocery shopping. 

I had to leave for church a little earlier so I unpacked my bag, caught up on stuff, and prepared for church. 

Christian and Ava went with me early. We arrived and almost nobody was there for House of Prayer. Normally we have sort of a plan for who is leading and such by Friday night, but for whatever reason that didn't happen this time. 

The one lady that was there to play piano and sing had lost her voice so I was asked to sing. So, that was waaaaaay out of my comfort zone. It went alright, though, and the hour was still a blessing to those there to be a part of it. 

Church was good as well. 

Afterwards we visited and held babies for a bit and then Chloe, Christian, Micah, Christy, Joe, myself, and several others went to go dance for a bit. Some people knew what to do, but others didn't so we taught people stuff and then enjoyed all dancing together. 

After a while, those of us that were left, went to get ice cream and visit a little more before finally saying goodnight. 

Sunday Dad and I visited for a while and then worked on brunch together. 

In the afternoon Chloe and Christian asked if I wanted to go with them to a park for a bit and then shop at Old Navy. 

Christian played some disc golf, while Chloe and I talked and read on a bench. 

Then we got to do some much needed shopping and in general just enjoy the outing together. 

That night we all watched an episode of "The Waltons" and headed to bed at a reasonable time. 

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Post-Riding Trauma, the Rodeo, and Dancing Under the Stars

Days in the Life...

Monday I was exhausted from my horse-riding adventure (almost falling off twice and being so terrified that you scream a genuine I-don't-know-if-I'm-going-to-be-okay-or-not scream will wear you out), so I slept in a little. Once I got up I felt like I'd been hit by twelve 18-wheelers, but that's okay.

I went on to spill coffee on myself twice that morning. It was a great day!

In the afternoon the kids wanted to hear all my stories from the previous afternoon and then Chloe and I took my car in to get new tires. (Yes, those are expensive.)

I got back in time to go babysit for small group and snuggle with baby Blaire.

Tuesday morning Christian asked me if I wanted to go for a run with him. I'm not a runner (we have established this about 12 million times), so I agreed. We left at 7:00 and this guy is fast. Eventually I told him I could not run anymore and gave him permission to take off for home. I was just fine to walk the rest of the way. This gentleman was very reluctant to run off and leave me, but I convinced him I would be just fine. 

All in the same day I learned that both Christian and Chloe are taller than me and that I am actually shorter than I thought I was. Mom and I are the same height, so Chloe and Christian have passed us both up, by a long shot. I'm fine with that. I've always wanted to be shorter than them. Christian is VERY fine with that. 

Gabe had gym in the afternoon and that night I went to babysit baby Sofia. 

She sat in my lap for .2 seconds, 
just long enough for me to take this picture. 

Wednesday I got to Kate and Blaire's house early again and got to sleep on the couch for two hours before they woke up!! It was a good day, although the big dog wasn't very nice to Kate or me. He spent a lot of time shut up in the bathroom because of it... 

Blaire slept quite a bit in my arms that afternoon. 
For some reason she would not go to sleep in her bed. 

I know Ava and Mia had their gym time, but I really don't have any idea what anyone else did during the day. 

Mom and Dad went out for dinner and then went over to see the progress on the little house. 

Thursday I was gone from 8:00-8:00. It was a long day! 

I had coffee with a friend, got my hair cut, did some shopping, remembered to eat lunch, went to the worship/Bible study, and met a lady from church for dinner. 

I felt like the biggest wimp EVER. 

I asked my hair-stylist to give me more layers, but save the length in my hair because it was too heavy. She only took an inch off the length and then added about three inches of layers. I then walked around the next two hours trembling because my head felt so much lighter it scared me. I know, it was bad. 

The rest of my day was great! 

While I was gone, Gabe had his gym practice and Christian spent most of the day at our little house with Micah and his friend working to pull up flooring because Mom and Dad found even MORE original hardwood floors in the house, this time in the kitchen. 

The three of them ended up spending about 10 hours working on it. 

When I got home I wanted to go see it so Dad and I went over there. We thought the guys were about done, but we got there and they were still working on this one little section that would NOT come up! Dad helped them and about 45 minutes and a lot of frustration and sweat later, they finally got it up. I will admit it was very entertaining to watch. I kept my mouth shut, though, and didn't give them advice. *wink* 

Friday I cared for Kate and Blaire at their house for a few hours in the morning and then came home to help Chloe deliver cinnamon rolls. 

I had had visions of retreating to my room for a quiet night alone recharging from the week, but when Rebecca invited me to go to the Rodeo with her and her sister spontaneously and then both Chloe and Christian expressed great interest, I waved goodbye to my tentative plan, in favor of time with people! 

By the time Chloe and I got home we had about 20 minutes to change and eat dinner before leaving to meet Rebecca and Amy at a gas station so we could all ride together. Jake works at the Rodeo at the Fort Worth Stock Yards so he was able to let most of us in for free! Micah met us there too so Christian wouldn't be the only guy looking out for all us girls. *wink* 

Now, Chloe and Christian love horses and are getting more and more and MORE into country music, trucks, cowboy clothes, and boots (ever since I came home from Summit with these three friends), so the rodeo was right up their alley, along with Jake, Rebecca, Amy, and Micah. However, none of that is really my thing. That being said, I actually enjoyed it all way more than I thought I would! I knew I would enjoy the time with the people, but the actual Rodeo was pretty cool too! I was the only one not wearing boots and a button down shirt, but that's okay. 


Jake (in the white shirt leaning against the gate)
 hard at work.

Line up for the calf roping.

Amy, Rebecca, me, Micah, Christian, Chloe.

My absolute favorite part, though, was when they opened the evening with prayer, the National Anthem, and the American flag. 

Saturday we had a family work day at the little house. Micah and Rebecca also came to help. The floor was all pulled up, but the entire house needed to be deep cleaned and there was a ton of trash that needed to be hauled off. The littles didn't stay the whole time and Mom had hurt her hand, but the rest of us were there a good five hours. 

It's always more fun working with friends, particularly strong friends who can help lift heavy stuff that otherwise would have taken just the four of us a lot longer to move... 

Mom picked up Chick-fil-a for all of us. Everyone had gotten their sandwich and I was reaching for mine, but the bag was empty... Within seconds pretty much everyone had pulled off a piece of their sandwich to give it to me. That was before I could say that I was genuinely not even that hungry. As it was, though, I ended up with more than a whole sandwich. I felt loved. 

After we finished working Rebecca headed home and the rest of us came home to clean up for church. 

Christian rode with Micah to church and I took Ava. 

I played piano during House of Prayer and everyone else met us for the church service. We visited for a long time after church. 

Before going home Chloe and Christian wanted a swing dancing lesson. Micah and I had learned some at Summit so we gave it a shot to see how much we could remember. It was more than either of us thought we would remember and it was definitely enough to be able to teach the others. 

So Micah turned on country music (no, that is not normal swing dancing music, but it worked) and we ended up dancing all together in the parking lot under the stars for almost 30 or 45 minutes! It was pretty fun and even Ava got to learn a few things. 

When we got home we taught Mia and Gabe as well. Gabe especially figured it out quickly!

Sunday was a normal, restful day until in the evening. Then we had people from church here for the Financial Peace University (FPU) class that Mom and Dad are leading the next several months. Christian, Chloe, and I are all participating as well.

That Moment When...

You trip over absolutely nothing.

You give the wrong directions to the person driving.

Your hair blows into someone else's mouth.

The Herd: Quoted 

"Turn it down! I don't want to draw any attention to us." -Me to Christian who was blasting my car radio in the church parking lot.
"But I do!!" -Christian dancing around.

"If you 'pear' with me, I will pare another pear and take care of that knife." -Mom to Dad after he cut his own pear.

"So, you remember last year when I said I hated country music with a passion because all it is is whiney people singing about all their problems with a fake accent?" -Chloe
"Yes..." -Mom
"Well, you can mark today as the day I eat those words." -Chloe

"I can't believe someone actually likes me!" -Mia when Dad said one of his work clients was hoping to see Mia again some time.

"That's okay I was just planning to not eat today...I'm seriously not hungry." -Me after I got handed pieces of everyone else's sandwich.
"Yeah, not eating usually works really well for you, honey." -Mom
"Well, I did have two eggs this morning!" -Me
"Oh wow! Two eggs! That will hold you over until Tuesday at least!" -Mom