Friday, October 31, 2014

Long, tiring day that ends in Parental Taxes Due!!

The joy and bright side of Halloween ~ parental candy tax and about the only time I eat Almond Joys!  One kid came home with obscene amounts of candy, the other a good amount (two totally different neighborhoods)!  I actually tagged along with the teenager, as he wanted to hang out with a friend, who had to hang out with his younger sisters.  For me, it was more to hang out with the mom's and chat, while watching over the younger ones!  Always fun to have a few minutes here and there.

Odd day for photos too!   None of the boys in costumes, which is okay.  Snapped a few random ones, post dinner (so don't look at the braces, please!!)  Just silly pictures as Friday night we seem more relaxed.  To shake things up in the order of this blog, here are the photo's:

 Close up and blurry!

Reasonable distance you can make out
the cup and bag of candy behind it!

Any hoot, the point behind the blog, my joy and thankfulness.  Today would look like this:
  • walking the whole cluster of streets, just to find out the distance for our oldest (thanks to "Log Your Run, we know it is 1.8 miles to walk all the streets)
  • one kid finally getting time with a friend of his
  • walking another neighborhood so another kid could hang out with a friend ~ I hung out with the moms
  • being able to eat pizza, just 5 weeks after surgery!  Woo Hoo, that his HUGE as we've been doing pizza Friday for about 13 years now!
  • a heating pad on tired, worn out feet
What has made today special for you?  What makes you feel joy?

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Comparison is the Death of Joy . . .

you can find that quote on many cute little subway art type things or photos or hand drawn art.  The truth is, it's true.  When you or I begin to compare ourselves to what others have or what we think they have, we loose sight of our own strength and talents; our own giftedness.  We forget about the things that bring joy and the things to be thankful for.

Been a rough week here (lol, among others picture perfect, Facebook worthy, costume & pumpkin posts).  Everyone's sleep cycle has been off.  We're all a bit more edgy, a bit more cranky.  Something might snap.  Trying to find the joyful things and things to be thankful for has been hard.  I've wanted to skip a few days in a row.  Just not worry about the good things.

Thing is, writing seems to help me remember the good and joyful things.  Not that anyone is expecting a post a day, but at some level, it feels like I am accountable to get a post out a day.  It keeps me looking for something to be joyful about.

So today, before I crash early (and get to sleep in tomorrow), here are my things for the day:

  • wispy clouds in a blue sky
  • Fiddler on the Roof is almost here, making for two happy kids
  • trying to make jam again (think I might have failed again, but really don't care at this point)
  • not being worried at how long school took
  • Hobbit references to our eating habits today
And that is my minimum quantity for posting lately, but at least I have current photo's as of today, for posting.

 The back of NVPLayer's Fall 2014

Clouds outside my front door

I leave you with these questions to ponder and answer if you care:

When life is feeling rough, how do you focus in on the joyful things and on gratitude?  How do you not compare yourself to others?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Another short and sweet!

Just a short list to keep the streak going:
  • ladies bible study
  • going for a walk with oldest
  • being able to specific praise. (Which happened hours ago and now I do not remember it ~ whoops!)
  • catching up on NCIS
  • prayers for good sleep

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

~ Unseasonably Warm ~

Think it was mentioned that it was suppose to get to 80 degrees today.  Not sure how warm it did get, but it was more warm than usual.  One kid asked to set up the tarp to make a "slip and slide", but he got overruled!  Lovely day to have the windows open and they have been since around lunch time and will probably close them soon.

Today I'll be thankful for:

  • warm weather
  • hearing the local high school band play (about a mile away, as the crow flies)
  • windows open
  • opportunity to try to rest
  • boys working independently, most of the day
  • photo worthy moon

Monday, October 27, 2014

Fall traditions . . .

Some things have remained the same over the years, like watching "It's A Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown"!  We missed the annual trip to Cox Farms because of schedule conflicts!  Sometimes life does that.  Other things that have remained the same for the last 18 years or so, a Harvest Festival at church on either October 31 or November 1!

Some things I am thankful for today and fall related:
  • It's A Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown
  • crock pot dinners
  • leaf blowers
  • iced tea after working outside
  • a good school day for oldest

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Just a list kind of day!

  • everyone one home by dinner
  • boys napping
  • reading on sunlit deck for second day in a row
  • serving boys by doing their laundry
  • making it to the early service

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Joy for the day!

different things have run through my head today, but not one particular thing!
  • time alone
  • a bit of sewing
  • catching up on odds and ends
  • time to read
Breakfast Date!

Friday, October 24, 2014

If You Give a Moose . . .

a Muffin.  It's that kind of day.  Yes it is!

     bunny trail first ~ here's a video of the book, in case you don't remember!

My distractions began with making home made salad dressing.  Got it made, put in fridge for later; found a spot, in the cabinets for the new Pyrex; got spices put away and cold stuff (mayo and sour cream, if you care); and went to put old mayo canister in recycle bin.  Managed to spill some of the contents all over the counter and floor, so of course I had to clean it, which lead to cleaning more of the floor, which lead to cleaning the lower cabinets.  At least it was cleaning right?

Anyway, still a good day with cleaning, schooling, errands, rehearsals, packing, taxi services, and all those other Mom Duties!  I am definitely seeing more joy in each day!

The list would go as such today:

  • bunny trails
  • memories of fun books
  • being able to provide fun things for the boys
  • last of the summer flowers
  • leaf storms
  • guys having a good weekend ahead of them

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Long, Weird day, yet Joy to be had!

Yes, it was long!  And weird thrown in for good measure.  A day when I thought I things pulled together well and yet somethings didn't turn out well.  Feelings and emotions hurt, mended, and all made right ~ I think!  Will have to check on that!  :(

Yet Joy?!?!

Yes,  joy can still be found even when things turn out poorly and here are a few:

  • saying, "I'm sorry"
  • kids doing well in school
  • brownies being brought to me while grading school work
  • successful co-op today ~ boys learned about fire

Malissa earned cool points today!  She even
brought s'mores fixings.  I just helped!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

More & More & More

and more RAIN!!!  We sure have gotten a lot lately.  Makes me think we live in Seattle, Washington; but we don't!  Honestly, it's not bugging me to much anymore.  Makes me think of Christen and how much she likes a rainy day.

Here's what our dog looked like most of the day:

Yes, she's even hugging her blanket!

The Joy for the Day, as that is the point of this blog:
  • first batch of brownies baked in my pyrex from yesterday
  • feeling skinny in the jeans I bought yesterday
  • doctor saying I'm good to go after surgery (4 weeks ago)
  • breakfast burritos for dinner
  • a pretty good school day
  • time for hanging out with friends tonight
  • music in the background, almost all day
  • mulling spices going all day
Have a blessed evening!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Bargain Shopping ~ It's usually hit or miss . . .

and for me, it is usually a miss.  Once in a very rare moon, I am successful.

There was the time, on trash day, some one was throwing out an Oak Washstand.  Seriously, oak wash stand, when in excellent shape fetches $450 or more.  This needed a new door, a towel rack, and to be refinished.  YES, I knocked on the door; YES I went back for the van!  My Christmas gift from my folks that year was to stripe the piece, by the towel rack, and my dad built a new door for me.

On another trash day, a neighbor was throwing out a portable terrarium!  It just needed a bit of touch up paint.  Have loved having it every moment and it was FREE!

Needless to say, I still look at others trash, on trash day, JUST IN CASE!  You never know what you might find.

Anyway, as for paid for treasures, I've been through Salvation Army stores numerous times.  I have left empty handed more times than I care to count.  I am okay with that.  On one occasion, I found a kitchen utensil holder in a light tan with two blue stripes for $3.99.  Hello beautiful, you are coming home with me!!

Today was another strike it rich:  a 14" x 11" Pyrex rectangle baking dish with little handles, a 13" x 11" Pyrex rectangle baking dish, a small one still by Archor and a pair of jeans that fit, all for under $17.00.  I could have easily spent $30.00 or more on the bake ware alone, if I'd bought new!

Finding my joy today, includes:
  • successful trip to Salvation Army
  • time to be able to shop alone, again today
  • time to get caught up on grading school work
  • bake ware that didn't cost a fortune
  • finding clothes that fit, for cheap
What makes your list today?  Seriously let me know, would love to rejoice with you!

 Lovely new bake ware!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Flooded by Memories today . . . .

Took a quick trip to Target today, without anyone, to only pick up a partial prescription.  It was a wonderful trip.  So many memories flooded my memory, it was like sitting with old friends, but just by myself.  Pandora was playing and "Faith Like a Child" by Jars of Clay came on.  It reminded me of the time around 1996, our church that we attended then, the youth group kids, but mostly a few of the girls who've grown up into lovely moms.  So hard to believe, these teen girls are all married and have or having kids!  Looking back, it's hard to believe it's been about 18 years!

Coming out of Target, saw a mom and little toddler boy, in a hooded jacket.  I can only speculate, but I am guessing the little boy didn't want to hold mom's hand, so she did what I remember doing with our kids, hold the hood!  Works and the child has a small sense of freedom.

Got to listen to a few other songs on Pandora on the way home!  One, 10,000 Reasons, by Matt Redman came on.  I hope to reach 10,000 reasons to find joy!  For the here and now, the today:

  • fond memories of teenage girls
  • same girls turning into proud moms of some great little kids
  • moms of those same girls ~ are some wonderful ladies
  • moms with toddlers
  • music
  • colorful trees

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Getting real good . . .

at the late thing.  Here are a few things for today:
  • grocery shopping
  • getting a few homeschooling chores done
  • grilled burgers

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Late and quick

Been a long day, in my neck of the woods.  Spent a number of hours helping to paint the set for "Fiddler on the Roof, Jr" which our kids are involved in.  Home long enough to shower, eat an early dinner, hang out a bit, then headed out again for the evening.  Home once again.  One kid, up and waiting till I got home, another mostly sleeping, and my dear husband waiting for me.

Today, I choice joy in:

  • lovely weather
  • compliments from friends
  • cinching in paints just a bit more
  • being able to fit in my "skinnier clothes"
  • amazement over who's reading this blog
U.S.A. and Saudia Arabia, I understand the readers!
Everyone else, I am amazed and am thankful.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Joy in Photography

Little things happened during the day that were joyful.  Things like:

  • oldest taking Algebra 1 final and getting a 96%
  • youngest feeling better with ibuprofen
  • watching "Girl Meets World" as it actually aired
Fun things happen when you take a moment, with a dog and a camera (till said dog gets bored and moves on):

 Someone wanted to be supper close!  Did not want to have
picture taken from a distance.

 Her coat looks more reddish brown, from this angle!

 Sunlight in the woods behind our house!  The blurry sunlight
is kind of cool looking!

 Beams of light flooding the woods!

Blue skies after a week of clouds and rain.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Happy Thursday!!

It is turning into a beautiful day!  Can finally see some blue sky!  (lol, started post hours ago and now the sun has set).  All things considered, an easy day.

Finding joy in the busy:

  • popping color in the trees
  • picking up prescription for one kid
  • some activities missed
  • some activities still attended
  • good doctors office
  • phone calls
A great photo, from our champ today!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Even in the storm, I can find joy!

We've had a lot of hard rain today, we've had tornado warnings, too!  Still lots to be thankful for.  Almost feels odd to say that, because after so many gray days in a row, it starts getting weary and dreary feeling.  Today, not so much!  That, in of itself, it something to be thankful for.  As of this posting, here's my list:

  • funny as get all video ~ watch it and see!
  • my Dad's birthday!!
  • neighbor blowing some of the leaves in our yard, into his yard to take care of!  
  • coffee tasting really good
  • soy wax melts, scenting the air so much, Kevin thought I was baking!  I think it is gingerbread something or another (sorry Mike and Paula, totally forgot which one it is.  It was a candle where the jar broke and I pulled all the glass off and saved the wax)
  • kid finishing cleaning his room (it's taken WAY TO LONG)
  • getting caught up on a few computer chores
  • having a fun dialog with a friend on face book!
  • Kevin coming home early from work; water main broke near his building, so the whole building got evacuated.  He still finished up his work day at home, but it's been nice having him in the house anyway!
That's all I've got for now.  One kid finishing up school, another cleaning his room, hubby working, and I'm blogging (should be doing chores! lol).

The red tree isn't so red anymore!
Ground is all red and green!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Another last minute post!

Another long day, but not like yesterday.  Just lots to get done, exhaustion, and still recouping from surgery.  Even ditching a few chores for the day!

  • Two hour nap
  • Extra coffee
  • All sots of music out of Pandora today 😄
That will have to do for joy.  Evening sleep is beckoning! 

Monday, October 13, 2014

How I find joy!

If I were to make a list of all that went wrong, it might be a long one.  It's just been that kind of day.  How do I find the joy on days like today?  I have to look a little harder, be more mindful of what is going on, look for the joy and humor.  Today I will be thankful for:
  • one son saying, "you look like you need a hug"!  I probably did!
  • our teen, with such a teen look, flashes the sign for "I Love You"; what a mix of expression
  • Kevin pitching in, a lot, to help wrap the day up!
  • finally having down time at 7:00 pm
The following pictures don't necessarily have any direct correlation with the post but still pictures!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

short, sweet, and to the point

  • Mom's birthday today
  • Michelle's birthday as well
  • Tomato soup that was crazy good (hope to be able to recreate it!)
No pictures today!  May not even connect with face book or pinterest!  Have a great rest of the Sunday.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

little things in life . . . .

. . . . are sometime a great source of joy!  Here are a few that I can think of for today:
  • teaching one son how to repair walls
  • cleaning and organizing the basement a bit
  • hanging out with kid while we shopped
  • getting gas for under $3.00 a gallon
  • coming home to a hot cup of Earl Gray
  • watching my favorite Saturday shows
  • helping another son organize his room
What has made your Saturday wonderful?  Care to share?

Friday, October 10, 2014

A Difference of Two ~

that is all it takes!  Two days ago, the weather was wonderful, today everything is wet from the rain last night and the clouds NEVER left!  It's gray and overcast.  Air damp, just to the point that it won't rain, but you can feel it.  A chill in the air.

It's turned into a clean pj day, clean out your drawers and see what you need for the winter, kind of day.  At least that is adding to the purging and organizing.

There is joy in all this though:
  • visual confirmation that the boys are growing by the stacks of clothing that are two short
  • extra time to snuggle under a blanket
  • more time to double check the "grocery lists"
  • a quick school day despite the overcast day
  • boy being rather independent today
  • sounds of dog snoring
Our day looks kind of like this!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

A New Day

Today dawned feeling difficult!  Going to be a rough day.  Need to watch my word choices.  Take moments to myself and be still & silent.  Lean in and listen for words of wisdom.  Share brief moments with trusted friends.

I will use joy as a verb today, I will Rejoice!  I can use it as a noun and find pleasure in small things or finding happiness unexpectedly.

Today I'll rejoice in boys having a good attitude toward school.
Today I'll find pleasure in the first, successful Hot Mocha made at home.
Today I'll find happiness in having a home, even if it is messy.

What will you rejoice over, find pleasure or happiness in?  Share with me so we all may rejoice together!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Weather ~ what a beautiful day

It truly is!  Much to be thankful for.  Windows open, low pollen count, breeze, crickets and birds talking to each other (think all the dogs are sleeping).  The sky is a brilliant blue, clouds are puffy and white, there were amazing sunbeams as the sun rose this morning.  Much to appreciate when not so totally focused on the to do list!

Will be interesting to see the sunset, tonight, to see how the day finishes out.  If I remember to take our camera, might just try to snag a few good photos.

This morning though, while driving across town, it looked like this:

It felt kind of like this!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Knitting ~ for me, ranks high on the joy list

Self taught, learned totally wrong, and learned the "correct" way.  The one folks look at, when someone wants a handicraft class taught to their girls at co-op.  The person who has bins of varying lengths of yarn from left over projects.  I AM that one who says, "Don't interrupt me while I am counting stitches!".  Known to loose a needle because I put it in my hair bun.  I could loose hours walking the aisles at Joanne's looking at and touching the yarn, all the whilst dreaming of the next project.  Friends ask if I would like their skeins of yarn they don't need.

I am my father's daughter, if you apply the same principles to wood, tools, and stains.  He can build the most beautiful things out of wood.  There are many other areas around a house he is good at, but the sound of a saw, the smell of wood and stain will always remind me of him.  I enjoy tinkering with him in his shop too!  He is a wealth of knowledge!

My brain is racing again!  Racing like Mario Anretti with things to make with srape yarn, things for the boys, and new projects.  Some require research, some just the gumption to sit and do, others brain storming, measuring, and planning.  It's a joyful feeling to have my brain engaged like this again; it has been to long.  Time for notes and sketches and measuring!  Maybe this is why I am liking my colored pencils, pens, and highlighters, i can think in color then!

So, I will leave you with something finished and something new!

 Most of the whole blanket!

 Close up of the back.

Close up of the front

Something new!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Just a list

  1. Kids working hard at school
  2. Eating a real meal at dinner ~ what everyone else had, just smaller portions
  3. Making it through most of the day before feeling like I needed a break
  4. Kevin making a Costco run on way home from work ~ love the Rotisserie Chicken
  5. Time for sleep
Good night all, it has been a long day!  Hope your day was filled with some amount of joy as well.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Sunday's at its BEST!!!

It's been a wonderful Sunday!  How about for you?  What has been good and true and right?  Have you spent time with family?  Been able to nap?  Take a hike?  What makes it special?

So far today:

  • boys mowing the lawn and doing a pretty good job
  • getting the lawn reseeded
  • grocery shopping (rather not on Sunday, but sometimes it needs to get done)
  • being able to eat just a bit more
  • glass of wine
  • sitting with Kevin and just chatting
  • kicking back, as a family, and watching a movie
  • comfy clothes
  • warm blankets
I think I could go on and on and on today.  Just a good day.  Have a lovely Sunday everyone!

Love this image, may just use it every Sunday!!!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Squeaking in a post!

No bells, no whistles, no fuss, no themes!  Just plan thanfulness:

  • cool, breezy day with windows open
  • getting a few chores done
  • trip to Springfield Butcher
  • watching "Girl Meets World" with 6th grader while high schooler was at life group
  • time to sit, knit, drink Earl Grey, and watch favorite shows

Friday, October 3, 2014

~ Finally Friday ~

and so thankful for that!!  Yes in deed, feels like the worlds longest week known to mankind!  So for today I am just thankful it is Friday!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Posting with a slight smirk!!!

When I started this blog, at the beginning of August, I got to the point I was writing posts 2 to 3 days out.  It was much easier then, "Being Joyful Through the Alphabet" made it easy.  Probably why I loved the themes for so long.  It was easy to collect my thoughts and joyfulness on a particular thing.  Finding joy is still easy, when one slows down.  It comes naturally, at moments, and more difficult at others.  Yeah, I know, I have mentioned that before and I will probably say it again at some point.  So to my list for today:

  • a ride to Micheal's for yarn
  • knitting about 5 inches already (LOVE those big needles ~ 50 US)
  • running into a friend, at Micheal's, of course in the yarn section
  • gentle reprimands, from friends, today about doing to much
  • being able to find movies to tie in with History (Amazing Grace)
  • odd, but pleasant, mixture of sounds coming in the window (ice cream truck, train in the distance, neighborhood dogs)
  • being able to eat a "normal" dinner
I leave you with the starts of another baby blanket.  I do so enjoy knitting!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Beginning of the Month

October 1st, a Wednesday, the year is three quarters finished already.  31 days, this month, to find something to be thankful for, find joy in.  I am sure some days will be easy to find those moments while other days may be a challenge.

Today, I will choose to be thankful for:

  • friends who understand how hard it can be to raise children into responsible adults
  • using the advancement in technology as a benefit in our home school environment, even when the connections are loose and make it difficult!
  • continued changing of summer colored leaves into fall colored leaves
  • electricity to plug in a heating pad

How boys are learning to take notes in history

How a dog does school!

A cat finding the last sunny spot in the living room!

More red leaves on the tree out back!