Showing posts from July, 2009

On Self Discipline

I lack self discipline. I do. It's something I have always failed at. I'm good at being busy, but I am poor at disciplining myself to make the most of the time and resources I have and put in consistent effort day in and day out. It's not because I have no will power, I have plenty of that. It is perhaps that in many areas of my life I am self indulgent and lazy. What's oddest though is that all the times in my life that I remember trying to change this about myself there have been so many voices trying to talk me out of it. They have gone out of their way to assure me that I am fine just as I am, that I shouldn't be too hard on myself. For example, once I found myself talking to a university counselor because I was not doing my best, and I was dealing with the stress that comes from lack of organization and poor planning. My adult self thinks he ought to have told my 17 year old self, "Yes, you need to be more disciplined, you need a plan, you need to force

She found a dead june bug.

It's shiny and green and pretty. Also, she's never been afraid of bugs. (Can you tell she's been ill?)

Multitude Monday

My mil came yesterday to take care of my children for a few hours while I went to church. She even offered to come over night and get up with one or two of them so I could sleep. (I didn't imagine I would be able to sleep anyway, but how lovely to offer.) It was refreshing to have a few hours when I wasn't rubbing backs and cleaning rugs and emptying vomit bowls. The Boy and Girl slept through the night last night for the first time in more than a week. Little boldly jumping into the pool and swimming "all by her big girl self" with water wings. Even though my children are very ill and I've lost a lot of sleep, I have never had a night and morning like MckMama is having. Will you pray for baby Stellan? The caress of warm night air on bare skin. Just cool enough to be refreshing after the heat of the day. Humming birds floating the in flowers near our front door. Dancing with my husband. Work that is meaningful. Bright red home grown tomatoes. The sight of a frie

A LIttle Too Much Information

Very early this morning I was finally dropping off to sleep, after several hours of attending to very sick children, as they coughed and vomited and cried and choked. Suddenly I became aware of a new sound, a sort of strangled, panicked, urgent scream. In an instant I was bursting through the door to their bed room, terrified at what I might find. Only they were sound asleep in their beds. Peaceful for the first time in hours. But the sound went on. My sleep befuddled brain thought maybe there was a child outside in pain and went to the window. OH! That's not distress I am hearing. Those aren't panicked sounds. We have new upstairs neighbors, two women, two children. I got back into my bed and covered my ears with my pillow, trying desperately to pretend I wasn't hearing anything at all and go back to sleep. Which I did. Until the second woman started to make similar sounds. Then I woke up again, and covered my ears again, and tried to go back to sleep, again. Oh we

7 Quick Takes

1. A while ago I helped a neighbor clean up her house, and get cat diarrhea and vomit out of her rug, and fleas. Also climb over the mountains of dirty laundry to find the floor underneath. CPS was the motivation behind her needing to do it. She and the cat had been sick for some time and somehow a social worker became involved. Her kids couldn't come home until she got it clean. I got the feeling that she barely noticed the mess, or stench. I wondered how someone could possibly let things get like that, and then live with it for so long. I guess it's like the clutter that I ignore building up in the corners of my home. After a while it just seems like it belongs there. But I tell myself it doesn't matter as much, because mine doesn't stink. Well, after several days of having the Girl vomit in little splatters every time she coughs, I've taken to simply wiping it up, spraying it with pink solution, and waiting until this whole thing is over before doing a deep cle

Oh I Could Never Do That.

Have you ever heard this phrase? Have you ever said it? This interview at Conversion Diary got me thinking about this again. In the interview it's mentioned that one of the common responses they get from people who learn they are adopting two children that are HIV positive is, "I could never do that." Granted it would seem like a huge and intimidating undertaking for many people, not impossible, but daunting. But I've heard that phrase in response to so many things. "Oh I could never home school my kids. I don't have enough patience." "Oh, I could never have that many children." "Oh, I could never learn to cook." "I could never give birth without an epidural." "Oh, I could never sew my own clothes." "Oh I could never live on such a small budget." Oh I could never... To borrow a phrase from a book a guy I know wrote , "Your vision of your life is too small." Why do we say that? How d

Dear Dr. Google

My kids are coughing, a lot. The Girl coughs so hard in the middle of the night that she occasionally vomits. They are wheezing and hacking and it doesn't seem to be stopping. So I consulted Dr. Google and here is what I have concluded they have. Whooping Cough The first symptoms of whooping cough are similar to those of a common cold. After about 1 to 2 weeks, the dry, irritating cough evolves into coughing spells. During a coughing spell, which can last for more than a minute, the child may turn red or purple. At the end of a spell, the child may make a characteristic whooping sound when breathing in or may vomit. Between spells, the child usually feels well. Or, Bronchitis Acute bronchitis most commonly occurs after an upper respiratory infection such as the common cold or a sinus infection. You may see symptoms such as fever with chills, muscle aches, nasal congestion, and sore throat. Cough is a common symptom of bronchitis. The cough may be dry or may produce phleg

A few pictures of the wedding.

We are recovering from a very exciting weekend. It was a lovely wedding. The kids did really well, but are still not a hundred percent in terms of health. Here are a few photos, that I didn't take, from a friend who is faster at uploading than I. The Bride's father has a Civil War sword that has been passed on as a family heirloom. Her grandfather cut his wedding cake with it, as well as her father, his brother, etc. They had photos of the parents and other family cutting the cake at their own wedding arranged around their cake. It was a really original idea. It was so hot that the cream cheese icing slumped a little bit. But it didn't matter. Ten minutes after they started cutting it, the table looked like a disaster zone, and there was no cake left. I'm assuming that means people liked it. :) I'll post the recipe and stuff on my food blog after I have a few days to catch my breath. It was an Italian Cream Cake recipe adapted with key lime zest instead of

Busy, Very, Very, Busy

I finished the flower girl dresses last night. Hooray! They look so cute. I'm sort of impressed with myself. Just don't look too close because toward the end I just fudged a bunch of places rather than finishing it properly. But you can't tell by looking. In other news, the Boy and Girl are both coughing horribly and sound like they are drowning toward the end of long nights. I'm hoping they quit by Sunday. Otherwise I'm trying to figure out a strategy by which they walk down the aisle, it's outside, and then spirit them away so that they don't cough on everyone and everything. Which will be miserable. Boo. The GH has been home for the past few weeks as work has slowed way down. It looks like it's only temporary, but it will make for a tighter summer than we had hoped. On the plus side, it's great to have him around, and we have gotten so much of the paper work and planning done for the next phase of The Charis Project . He's taken the kids s

One Thousand Gifts-Week 25

Okay so really, it's hardly accurate to call this week 25 since there were those two months that I completely missed, but for the sake of chronology, and ease of titling, just pretend with me. Alright? The GH has this way of looking up from what he's doing whenever I walk by, looking me in the eye, and smiling at me in a heart melting, knee weakening sort of way. Little is talking up a storm these days. Everything she does is accompanied by a constant stream of chatter. I have some favorite phrases things I will be very sad to have gone when she starts saying them correctly. "Me wuv you mama, ahso, too!" for example. Or, "No, me do it my big giwl sewf." (That's "me do it my big girl self" for those of you who don't speak toddler.) Also, "ME DID IT!" Sunday school teachers taking time to pull me aside and marvel at how well my children play together, how kind they are to each other. I marvel as well, and continue to be grateful

If I were a better blogger...

...I would post every day to start with. Not these fits and gaps that I've been doing. Seriously, has it been 6 days since I last posted? It seems like yesterday. ...I would pick up on the frugal trend lately and post about how to patch holes in clothing, as I have been doing, or turn pants into shorts when they get too short. ...I could start a how to make a wedding cake series, complete with pictures tips and recipes. I would be showing you the test taste that is right now cooling on the table so that I can experiment with the blackberry flavored white chocolate ganache between the layers of the key lime flavored Italian Cream Cake. And I would show you pictures of the fresh flower decorations and icing bags and all. ...I would be letting my readers in on the walk through the gospel of Matthew that I've been taking with my mentoree the past few months. I could write a weeks worth of posts alone on what we discuss every Sunday over tea. My favorite moment was two weeks ago


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