Just Because

My list is long, but my desk is messy and some of the things on the list are challenging…. so I’m doing something easy first: blogging! Then I will figure out health insurance, IEPs, chores, homeschooling and whatever other stuff I’m not remembering that is a-piling up.

Growing curve
Favorite concepts from chapter one of the book my mom friends and I are reading (“Loving our Kids on Purpose”):
- Just like a carpenter does much better with more tools than just a hammer, parents will have more success with more tools than just intimidation.
- Parenting out of fear (of failure, of our kids being failures, of losing their respect, etc.) does not help our kids grow up respecting us.
- God loves us no matter what. He is the best place ever to go when you make mistakes, because he will help you through them. Wouldn’t it be great if our kids thought of us as such a safe place.
- Relationship with our children is more important than….. obedience…. you name it.

And now… some pictures!

My sunshine!

My sunshine!

Ballet pose!

Ballet pose!

"My undies"

“My undies”

ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Pie crust leftovers!

Pie crust leftovers!

Happy girls getting the run of the kitchen for a bit!

Happy girls getting the run of the kitchen for a bit!

Silly fun times in the play room.

Silly fun times in the play room.

Carolyn didn't roll her pie crust or put cinnamon sugar on it or leftover pie drippings.... she just enjoyed it right away and then rubbed flour all around.

Carolyn didn’t roll her pie crust or put cinnamon sugar on it or leftover pie drippings…. she just enjoyed it right away and then rubbed flour all around.

Cheese!

Cheese!

Then Carolyn helped with (cleaning?) the rolling pin.

Then Carolyn helped with (cleaning?) the rolling pin.

SAM_7828 (Large)

Hard at work

Hard at work

I should have known there was trouble afoot when I heard so much laughing from Maggie downstairs.  But at least she cleaned up the mess?

I should have known there was trouble afoot when I heard so much laughing from Maggie downstairs. But at least she cleaned up the mess?

Sister haircut hall of "fame."

Sister haircut hall of “fame.”

Forelock modification

Forelock modification

Well, at least her hair is skin colored still!

Well, at least her hair is skin colored still!

This is a picture of a fly that Anna took for the field guide.  But.... here's a picture of our yard this week!  It's greening up again from some rain.

This is a picture of a fly that Anna took for the field guide. But…. here’s a picture of our yard this week! It’s greening up again from some rain.

Maggie doing school in the kitchen.

Maggie doing school in the kitchen.

Pet store!  Anna held a guinea pig, a gerbil, a hamster and a turtle.  Maybe something else.  Hmm.  She took notes on the prices of animals and wrote a report when we got home.

Pet store! Anna held a guinea pig, a gerbil, a hamster and a turtle. Maybe something else. Hmm. She took notes on the prices of animals and wrote a report when we got home.

Anna gets her own small pet when she turns 8... she is going to decide what she wants by Christmas so I can start shopping craigslist for a cage/aquarium/whatever.

Anna gets her own small pet when she turns 8… she is going to decide what she wants by Christmas so I can start shopping craigslist for a cage/aquarium/whatever.

Tiny, adorable chameleons.  Only Maggie held this cute little fella.

Tiny, adorable chameleons. Only Maggie held this cute little fella.

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8:22am

2014-10-02 08.45.45

6am Woke up and immediately sat up.
6:03 Realized I was dreaming sitting up and lay down again
6:20 Woke up for real and pulled warmer clothes over jammies.
6:30 Read a couple Web comics and checked Facebook.
6:40 Ate breakfast that my incredible husband fixed for me and filled four juice cups.
6:50 Made bed and began to sort stuff from desk on the bed in hopes of making a list. (desk occupied by husband working from home today. )
6:51 Brought Maggie onto our bed, because she seems to have a fever and was crying.
7am Anna wakes up and the girls go downstairs to eat breakfast. The thermometer didn’t detect a fever, but Maggie gets her daddy to carry her downstairs with a very pathetic whimper and request. I try again to sort desk piles.
7:07 Carolyn wakes up and I bring her downstairs to her juice and scramble eggs for her and Maggie. Anna prepares bagels.
7:11 Went upstairs and dressed Jordan, washed his face and got his shoes on.
7:20 Fixed Jordan’s breakfast and feed him. He is cranky this morning and only ate half his breakfast. I move his obstinate self into the play room and fill out a communication sheet for his kindergarten teacher and tuck it in his backpack.
7:45 Helped Carolyn dress herself (she wants to do it herself), finally responding to the much repeated call of the last two minutes. (mommy! mommy! mommy! ) She takes herself to the potty while I clean up some clothes on the floor.
7:54 Go to sit down to make my list at last and see the bus pulling into the driveway, so I run down and get Jordan onto the bus, letting the driver know that if he melts down and cries for long that I want a phone call… He seems happy to see the bus and I get and give hugs with Anna and Carolyn in the garage on my way back in. Anna offers to feed the cat.
8am Maggie gets started on chores and I try to decide how much of her behavior is sickness and how much is an act. Anna is doing great with her chores, Carolyn has wet undies and is on the potty again.
It’s 8:22am and my desk stuff is sorted into piles. and I am ready for a nap.

Update: Slept 9am-10am

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September at the Davises

One little story:
There once was a little girl named Carolyn. She turned two years old. The next day, she decided she was big enough to go potty in the big potty. Ask her, she will tell you she is six. She left her clothes and diaper behind her and began sitting for long periods of time on the porcelain throne. Ummm… she is going through a lot of underwear AND diapers, but she is potty training herself pretty well, so far as I can tell.

Being a parent throws surprises at you for sure! Crazy kids.

First day of school.

First day of school.

Birthday card!

Birthday card!

Opening the card

Opening the card

Getting ready for ballet

Getting ready for ballet

Adorable tiny bun

Adorable tiny bun

Jordan hanging out

Jordan hanging out

Anna ready for ballet

Anna ready for ballet

Maggie's little girl pink class

Maggie’s little girl pink class

Anna's 'big girl' black class

Anna’s ‘big girl’ black class

Getting Grammy ready to see Papa at the Heart Change silly party was pretty funny

Getting Grammy ready to see Papa at the Heart Change silly party was pretty funny

Carolyn and Maggie's dual birthday party!

Carolyn and Maggie’s dual birthday party!

Bloooooooow!

Bloooooooow!

Here is Carolyn opening her birthday card from Grandma Chapman. Sorry, Grandma… she tore the silver dollar right out of the card!

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Heart Change

My small group

My small group

Last month I got to participate in a personal growth workshop called Heart Change. It was an experience that touched my heart deeply and drew me closer to my Father. We had a “graduation” last night where we had an opportunity to share what God is doing in us. I’d like to share with you what I wrote down to share (and which I did, more or less say out loud). We had a two minute timer, but I went a little long.

Heart Change Graduation:

“The biggest truth that I accepted at the workshop is that God loves me and he likes me. I was convinced of this through both the love from you all [speaking to my fellow participants and staff] and through the Holy Spirit. Thank you T and Jason and everybody for showing and sharing God’s love for me.

Another truth I accepted is that I can accept grace and I can deny condemnation… even for myself. I repeat this truth to myself often. I often actively accept His grace.

Also, God is not disappointed in me. He is lovingly leading me.

Lastly, playfulness does have value. Loosen up! :-)

Second, I want to share what I am still struggling with. I am still struggling with the concept of suffering. How can God be our joy, our comfort and our refuge when He also calls us to take up our cross and follow Him?

I do not like suffering. I have an air conditioned house, for goodness sakes! My car even has air conditioning!

I have been encouraged to not give up, even when I don’t understand.

I keep grasping to know that God is real. If I believe that with my whole heart, then I can claim all of His promises without being held back by fear of suffering.

Here are some things I’m doing to hold onto God’s truths and respond to Him:

  1. I have been using the truths in my dagger to combat the lies I used to believe. (This is something we created during the workshop – mine says: “I am my Father’s beloved daughter. He thinks I am lovely and is pleased with me.” I found Scripture to back that up. Pretty awesome, huh?)
  2. I am exercising three times a week
  3. I am taking Prozac (super humbling for me, people!)
  4. I put up a poster in my kitchen that says, “Thank you God for…” that I can write on during the day
  5. I often think about God’s grace as a waterfall pouring over me, washing away the ropes of condemnation.
  6. I am (often) releasing the pressure of making decisions based upon whether people would be disappointed in me.
  7. We have started having 30 minutes of quiet time most evenings (just started this week) where we read the Bible, journal and pray. That has been really helpful.
  8. The last thing I’m going to do is write down memories of God’s real presence and influence in my life. I can use these like my “dagger” to serve as ammunition against the assailing thoughts about God’s existence.

And that was it! Thank you, Ian and Mac and T and Jason and Fay and Christina and Shelley and Surina and Brenda and Kaellie and Connie and Chris and Greg and Summer and Jackie and and and…. the list goes on and on. I met and got to know over fifty people during the workshop and was blessed by so many of them. Thank you, Lord for the sweetness of your love pouring out through your church. Bless them and encourage them, Father, just like you do me.

Oh – a song that is encouraging me right now:

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August 2014 at the Davises

Ok, I know you don’t hardly see it in these videos, but I grabbed the camera at the end so I could enjoy the “event” thoroughly with my eyes first. Jordan was deliberately making noises (“talking”) into a tube and then putting the tube up to his OT’s mouth for her to make a sound. He initiated this game that we have initiated for him before. But, him making intentional vocal sounds and the turn taking lasting for so long (probably 10-20 minutes!) was incredible. And he was having a rough day too, as you can tell because he’s sitting in a corner and sucking on his hands. But he kept pushing and trying to connect with Joanna. Oh my, but it was a treat. Both Joanna and I were about to cry or cheer or do a dance, but we didn’t want to freak Jordan out. Anyway, Jordan taking turns and making his first ever speaking sounds counts as huge awesome breakthrough, people!

Here he was not “talking” at all, but did keep Joanna making sounds for him. You can here his frustrated/tired whine here and see him request she makes more sounds by putting the tube to her mouth.


I know it only lasts for a second, but at 39 seconds, Jordan made a deliberate sound! He had done quite a bit more of this preceding me getting the camera, but it is definitely a challenge for him. You could just about SEE the thinking going on in his head. He was focusing and trying so hard that day and looked a little surprised and pleased every time he was successful in making a sound in the tube/microphone.

Here is Anna under two of her pieces of artwork at the county fair!  The blue one with butterflies and the one of the pool above that.  So proud of her!  She's proud of her too!

Here is Anna under two of her pieces of artwork at the county fair! The blue one with butterflies and the one of the pool above that. So proud of her! She’s proud of her too!

Yes, Carolyn wants to be in every picture and Maggie poses like this on her own.  The painting with dolphins and glitter in the top left corner is one of her entries.

Yes, Carolyn wants to be in every picture and Maggie poses like this on her own. The painting with dolphins and glitter in the top left corner is one of her entries.

This was the big deal at the fair.  Anna wanted to go on the ferris wheel with Mama until we walked up to it.  It was too big.... but she pulled as much daring as she could from deep inside and went with me anyway!  She tells me she even opened her eyes before the ride was over!  LOVED being on the ride with her myself... made me think of my mom!

This was the big deal at the fair. Anna wanted to go on the ferris wheel with Mama until we walked up to it. It was too big…. but she pulled as much daring as she could from deep inside and went with me anyway! She tells me she even opened her eyes before the ride was over! LOVED being on the ride with her myself… made me think of my mom!

Over to the kids rides!  This is the kids roller coaster and only one of us adults went on.... so Anna sat on her own!  She was as scared as she looks and wasn't sure she liked it once it was swerving around corners, but it was a short ride and her confidence was boosted... I think.

Over to the kids rides! This is the kids roller coaster and only one of us adults went on…. so Anna sat on her own! She was as scared as she looks and wasn’t sure she liked it once it was swerving around corners, but it was a short ride and her confidence was boosted… I think.

Definitely never too old for a merry go round!  My pretty girls.

Definitely never too old for a merry go round! My pretty girls.

Carolyn's very first ride ever!  She was ADORABLE.  She was unsure at first, but once it started moving, a look of wonder was all over her face.

Carolyn’s very first ride ever! She was ADORABLE. She was unsure at first, but once it started moving, a look of wonder was all over her face.

Carolyn loves the tractors.

Carolyn loves the tractors.

The bee exhibit was wonderful!  We could see the queen bee and everything.

The bee exhibit was wonderful! We could see the queen bee and everything.

Err... this is after the fair.  I didn't even have time to dump the green water or remove any clothes.

Err… this is after the fair. I didn’t even have time to dump the green water or remove any clothes.

We went back to the fair one more time with Jordan too.  It was too much for him, so we didn't take hardly any pictures.  But we ate treats and watched several silly shows, including a juggler and diving pirates!

We went back to the fair one more time with Jordan too. It was too much for him, so we didn’t take hardly any pictures. But we ate treats and watched several silly shows, including a juggler and diving pirates!

Joanna Blanchard of Everybody Stims... you have my wholehearted endorsement.  And Jordan's too.

Joanna Blanchard of Everybody Stims… you have my wholehearted endorsement. And Jordan’s too.

Awwww..... love!!!!

Awwww….. love!!!!

I got a rare and special treat last month!  Hollie and her troupe came for a visit!  Oh, it was like a shower fresh water.  Thank you for the visit.  I love you and I love your kids.  Come any time.  Come often.

I got a rare and special treat last month! Hollie and her troupe came for a visit! Oh, it was like a shower fresh water. Thank you for the visit. I love you and I love your kids. Come any time. Come often.

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