Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas 2010

In my little corner of the world it is as if we had the blessed miracle with all the wonder and happiness of the savior being born. I am exaggerating, of course, but did have a very good Christmas.

I've been impressed before that my children can show a maturity that gives me reason to admire their thoughts and ideas, but this day they didn't put themselves first but instead looked to the needs of others.

Justin, Jacob and Chelsea helped cook Christmas dinner. They didn't get distracted by movies or anything else going on, but purely helped. Jacob iced some cookies, Chelsea cooked the mashed potatoes, and asparagus, Justin put things in the oven, got them out and was there for everything I needed.

I love my children through good and bad. I like it when it's good.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

8 weeks after knee replacement surgery

It's time to get up and go to an activity I said that I would attend. It's hard. I still feel sick from the surgery. I would never go anywhere in this condition before, but after 8 weeks of feeling bad you know you have to get on with life.

My main problem (and there are many small ones) is that the leg is heavy, tight, hard to bend or straighten, hard to walk on. This makes it difficult to distract myself from thinking about the leg.

I have been successful keeping myself busy. I get a chair to do housework such as clothes, dishes, cooking... I have been scrapbooking, making Christmas presents, writing letters, reading, doing Sudoku... but my spirits wain. Going to church has helped, and spending small amounts of time at the school has helped. Keeping busy has got to be the best way to get out of any restrictive situation-whether surgery, depression, loss of job, etc...

My family stay positive. I have an excellent support system. I think I need to spend some time not thinking about how difficult life has become.

I've heard Dr. Phil say that "it could be worse." In the position I'm in now, that isn't the least bit helpful. Maybe at some point in my life the words could have been encouraging. Things can always get worse. Right now I just want to start getting better. The only solution seems to be keeping my mind busy with activity.

Eight weeks after knee replacement surgery, staying busy and trying to remain positive.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Banana Pumpkin Muffins


My son Jacob has allergies toward beef and chicken. By 3rd grade he had decided as a personal decision he would become a vegetarian. He's now in 9th grade and is even more passionate about his decisions with food, cleaning products, etc...that involve the (harmful) use of animals. My personal opinion is that he loves and cares strongly for the well being of animals which has driven first his decision to be a vegetarian and now a vegan.

Several weeks ago a friend brought by a recipe for Jacob for vegan choc. pudding. It was very good! My husband Paul made Jacob Vegan Chocolate Chip cookies and then my mom made him blueberry muffins and apple muffins.

When he went Vegan I thought his ability to eat baked goods were gone. There are very few breads he would eat, he doesn't eat cheese, eggs, milk, etc... But not to be outdone by the loving people around me that are helping Jacob with Vegan recipes, I too came up with one after several tries. I really like this one. I used a banana in place of 2 eggs and soy milk instead of regular milk.

Banana Pumpkin Muffins

Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes

2 c. flour
1 T. baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ginger
1/3 c. margarin
1 c. sugar
1 medium banana
1 c. mashed, cooked, or canned pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
3/4 c. soy milk

Scoop 1/4 c. mixture into muffin tins.

I have more coming soon.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Surgery

I entered the knee replacement surgery knowing it would be difficult and painful but with the heart that wanted to be mobile so that I could keep up with my family. I have had surprises. I've been much more emotional than I thought I would be and have cried more in the last 7 weeks than in the last 7 years.

When I woke up from surgery, I was in much, much less pain than I thought I would be. I didn't realize how long it would take my leg to wake up. I had very little ability to move my leg and to this day still need to pick it up and move it at times.

In the hospital and afterward, Paul, the kids, friends, family, students, parents, etc... have shown me how much I am loved. From Scott and Mom driving to San Antonio, cards made from the CHS elementary student body, well wishes from friends, and food from friends, I have been overwhelmed. I feel God is showing me that I have love in my life that I have never fathomed.

In the 2nd and 3rd week I felt more swelling and more nerve pain. I was needing to take pain medication every 4 hours. As the weeks have continued it has turned into more of an annoyance that my knee doesn't bend or straighten like it did before surgery. I am very restricted in my movement. My knee is still healing in the inside. I still need pain reliever, but not as much as before.

The worst was when I was told first by the physical therapist and then by the doctor that I would never have full mobility. Every time I thought those words for 2 weeks, I cried. I wanted to work harder at physical therapy and I prayed diligently that I would have the mobility that I went to surgery to obtain.

From the day of surgery I have done everything I have been told. If I was told to do an exercise twice a day, I would do it 4 times. Somehow I was wronged by not getting the results I felt I deserved. I want to stop the resentment, continue to work and get as much mobility as possible.

It has only been 7 weeks. At times I have no discomfort. I have made progress. I am so glad that I can now alternate legs going up and down stairs, I am proud that I can lift my leg high enough to go over the side of the bathtub and can take a bath instead of sitting in a chair in the shower, I am so glad I can bend my leg enough to comfortably get in the car.

My hope for the future is to be able to straighten my leg enough so that I don't always put the weight on my arthritic knee. I want to get through the pain and increase the length that I can walk comfortably so that I do not restrict the plans of my family, because of my inability to walk.

I pray I can bend my knee more so that I can cross my legs, put on my socks and shoes, and do the things I need to do to be a young, strong 45 year old woman.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Contentment







At Thanksgiving all 3 kids were able to join us. We went to Mom's and had Thanksgiving with Mom, Larry, Scott, Justin, Chelsea, Jacob, Cody and Paul. It was so wonderful to sit with those you love and reflect on life. I came to several conclusions.





If I could live anywhere in the world it would be in San Antonio where my family is, and Texas where I have extended family. I have resisted embracing San Antonio. I think this is the longest it has ever taken me to embrace where I live but I have come to a feeling of contentment. Yes, contentment!! That was my goal for 2010!

I am at peace with my job. I realize that I do like teaching the little ones. I am at peace with my kids. I have found that their character surpasses both Paul and I at times. Only God could make that happen.

After Thanksgiving events included decorating inside and outside the house. While decorating the tree the kids talked about when each ornament was made or given to us. The discussions were so fun, and warmed my heart.
What a wonderful life filled with thankfullness, peace and contentment.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Thankfulness

Since I took medical leave 2 weeks ago I've somehow come to a peace that feels very good. I realize how much I love my family, friends and all those that surround me whether in person or through email, text, or facebook.

My new found contentment has brought me to the point that it makes me smile to wash clothes, drive my children around or just sit on the couch talking for hours on end. Chelsea and Cody spent most of Wednesday with me. They've been coming over more and more and I love it. I wish I could do more for them.

I love spending time with Paul, Justin and Jacob. After my knee surgery, I want to be able to shop with Chelsea, hike with Jacob, take Justin places he has never seen in Texas, and travel with Paul without needing to rest, take tylenol, etc...for my knees.

Though my abdomen still hurts constantly and I feel I have slowed down to almost a stand still, I think this will be short term. 2011 looks to be a wonderful opportunity.

Friday, July 23, 2010

How creative God has made us

I've been looking at other blogs and seeing beautiful photography, music, poems, needlework, quilts, etc.... I don't have the ability to produce any of those much less write a tutorial BUT I do believe God has given us all talents to use for Him.

Two Sundays ago we went to Chiles after church and there was a balloon artist who created insects out of balloons for the two boys. They were very cute. I wish I could have taken a picture of them before the boys let the cat destroy them. I've kept that great moment of her creation in my mind for 2 weeks and it continues to bring a smile.

I haven't wrapped my head around what creations we will produce this next school year. I think we have great potential and opportunity.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Wonderful Summer


I've decided that this is the most important summer I have ever had. When I wasn't commiserating over the pain in my knees I was spending time with my husband, my children, my friends and family.
Above is Scott throwing the first pitch at the Round Rock Express baseball game. Mom, Larry, Paul, Justin, Jacob, Deb, Craig, Larissa, Nathan, Tabitha and Annalisa were there to cheer Scott on.
Every Friday the ladies of our life group get together to eat. I was able to get together with Lori in New Braunfels. The fellowship of Christian ladies has been wonderful.
I loved going to Marble Falls with Paul...every walk, every quiet moment, every talk was time well spent. I love taking Jacob shopping. This child lives life like he feels it should be spent never criticizing others for making different choices.


My oldest two children have made me proud in their adult decisions. Justin loving college and Chelsea working steadily at her job making sure she can pay her bills.


Justin, Chelsea and I have many opportunities to sit, talk, and have laughs together.


This had been a wonderful summer.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

I release you

Prayer for Chelsea

Thank you Lord for Your many promises of protection. You have kept Chelsea safe from accidents, disease, and injury. I now ask for your help to release her to adulthood knowing that she has morals and values embedded in her heart. Help me not to hold on and stop her from growing in her ability to make independent decisions. Give her a vision for her life when setting goals. Help her to see herself as You do--from her future and not from her past. Teach her to look to You as her hope for the future.
In Him I pray.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Summer!!


I've got a few things started that I wanted to get done this summer. I've got about 5 weeks left which should be plenty if not too much time. Without a schedule things are taking much longer than they normally would. Example: Woke up this morning at 8! I had already missed Fox and Friends, but continued on. I worked on the pillow I am making with Dad's neckties, and I studied for the Reading Specialty test then I got in the hot tub to relax--now 11:00. By 12:30 I did finally get dressed for the day. I am loving unscheduled days. Here is the pillow so far. With the amount of ties dad had, I could make 4 or 5 pillows, if I have the stamina.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Taking it slow

I've had 3 weeks since school ended. I've had time to relax, read, and catch up with stuff that life throws us when we REALLY don't want to accept it. Now, refreshed, I can get on with my summer. I have 2 weeks before my ethics class starts, and then 4 weeks after that the Masters degree will be finished! The sun is shining, the grass is green, there are new exciting units of study to plan for, crafts to create, and places to explore.

Going through dad's things last week, I got a whole box of ties to make something out of. I know there is a craft in there somewhere. I have all these great ideas that I want to plan for next year. I am not positive which grade I will teach, but I want to start the planning process.

Oh the places we go.

Friday, June 4, 2010

The year 2020

Instead of getting the grant written up for my graduate class, or doing laundry, or washing dishes, or planning for VBS next week, I thought I would purge myself of the thoughts creating this headache that is keeping me from being productive.

I am at a good place right now. I love my husband and children more than life itself and they know that. I also have a career that I love.

The problem is not letting all the stresses keep me from appreciating what I have. Yes, I feel I need to look for a more stable job. Yes, I wish Chelsea was more stable. Jacob is going to highschool. Justin is going to study in France. Both are scary for me. I don't think my children are worried. I hope not. I pray they are able to function without the anxiety that I seem to create for myself.

I have decided to put myself in the mode of looking toward the year 2020. I find tomorrow unpredictable, next year unpredictable, but somehow 2020 looks very good. I see myself teaching and should have found my stable job by then, the kids will have all moved out and found their paths by then and it will be me and Paul enjoying life.

Yes, life is good in 2020.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Onward and Upward

I've been in a constant whirl wind of learning since I started my master's degree in 2008. I think I am just about ready to stop--seriously just not have to think anymore yet here I am typing away trying to get all my thinking documented.

The days seem to be filled with trying to figure out life: how to enhance others lives and refine our own lives. It would be nice to wake up, look in the mirror, and confidently know that God is leading the day. There are days that I do that. Then there are days that I wake up sure of the fact that without a conscience effort to bless others with my speech that I will drain others of their confidence. There are so many forces in the environment that impact how we react to the world.

May the positives propel us forward and the negatives not get us down. Onward and upward.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn't want what if doesn't have. Love trusts God always. Love looks for the best. Love never looks back, but keeps going to the end.

Covey: Understand what others are saying before seeking to be understood.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Future not that scary

Food for thought: The reason people find it hard to be happy is they see the past better than it was, the present worse than it is, and the future less resolved than it will be.

Past: Sometimes I find myself thinking of when was really happy and want to go there, but it is never the same.

Present: I see the happiness of the present, but worry about things going on in the present.

Future: No grip on what it will be and worry there too.

Too much worrying going on.

The future doesn't have to be scary. I've heard people say to live in the present. Take it one day at a time. I probably do see the future less resolved than it will be and the present worse than it is. The future does not have to be scary, and worrying about it doesn't make it better.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Waiting for ...

I wonder how people wait for death and keep their sanity. I am in a position now where my dad is dying. I wait for the phone calls from siblings, and know the phone call might be saying dad has passed away.

The wait. I don't like the wait. I don't like the idea of the phone ringing. There is more negativety. So little positive to focus on. How do people do it?

Too much unrest. Too much, too much.

I don't know what to do. I don't know where to go. Comfort. Comfort is what I need. Been there before. Wanting comfort.

Too hard. Too much.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Let me rest in your holiness

I found a blog by Robin Lee Hatcher where she says this within a poem. Right now meditating in God's holiness sounds so refreshing. May I bless others with the rest I receive from God's holiness.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Jacob



Jacob will be 14 on the 20th. I have watched him grow and had so many precious moments.
He is a strong, philosophical guy and I can never guess what he is thinking. He always has me puzzled. I think I am the luckiest mother for the opportunity to learn about him.
Jacob has always loved strong movement--swings, climbing, exploring. Now at 14 he skateboards, jumps on the trampoline with his dog and is exercising all the time.
Jacob has lots of good friends. He has never been the person to collect as many friends as possible but instead find someone and know them forever. His best friend, Logan, now lives a state away but Jacob would never turn his back on him.
Happy Birthday, Jacob. I love you very much.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Usefulness

When I was in 5th grade Nettie Green told us that God always gives our life purpose, and it is our responsibility to find it. I remember her example was a mother with a 2 year old that God gave the mother to wipe his nose. That stuck with me, because it isn't always the glamour or power that is our purpose.

I sometimes have check list to make sure that I get the things completed that I need to complete but my purpose in life is completed without being on the list. I wake to pray first thing, I bring Paul coffee, I tell my children that I love them, I check in with friends. I never end a day without thinking through to make sure that good was done.

As a teacher, I feel I have a job that can heal others or hurt others. Many times my purpose is putting on a band-aid, giving a hug or teaching how to get along with others.

Yes, I feel useful. Thank you Nettie Green for a message that has stuck with me through decades.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Blessings

Look back and thank God. Look forward and trust God. Look around and serve God. Look within and find God! God closes doors no man can open and God opens doors no man can close.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Paul


I grew up in the same town as Paul. I never thought of him as more than someone that I went to school and church with, but the older ladies of our town would tell us there was something more there.

In highschool, I was a freshman and he was a junior and he would have me carry his things, duck walk, and other things that I know now was his way of spending time with me. He was always the jokester.

When Paul joined the Air Force I realized I missed his smiling face. We dated when he visited our small town, but soon I was driving to see him. Later we were married, now 3 children later, I still laugh at his silly actions. He is someone I admire. He is smart, funny and can handle what life gives him. We have been married 25 years and I love him more today.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Children

I told my oldest I was changing my facebook picture to the one I took with a student. I won't. I'll leave the family up for now. I love my students though. We are deep into science and the questions are thought provoking. The thinking that goes on in those little minds are wonderful.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Thankfulness

I feel thankful for my thoughtful husband, supportive children, beautiful mother, a home, clothes, food, work, the list goes on and on.

I am back to wearing my complaint free bracelet because it is so easy to sit and talk to friends about the "wrong' in our lives. The bible does not teach us to do this. David, Job and others actually were thankful. Saying thank you is not just something we have children do.

1 Chronicles 29:13 Now, our God, we give you thanks and praise your glorious name.

Psalm 7: 17 I will give thanks to the LORD because of his righteousness and will sing praise to the LORD MOST HIGH.

Psalm 69:30 I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving.

Psam 75:1 We give thanks to you, O God, we give thanks, for your Name is near; men tell of your wonderful deeds.

Psalm 136:26 Give thanks to the God of heaven. His love endures forever.

I remember going with my grandpa to the Lutheran church and repeating "His love endures forever." Yet we have the audacity to complain! How human is that!

I also love the song "We will magnify His name!"

The water has always soothed my soul and made me realize the gloriousness of God. The dophins were everywhere, except when we had the camera out.
video

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Future

I've talked before about coming full circle...that I started in special education and would return to special education. I still do not know when or where but I believe this to be true.

I have filled out applications for 7 different districts in San Antonio and part of me wants to stay at CHS. Such indecision. This is not like me. I normally make decisions fast and stick with them. I don't know where I want to work.

My choices:
1. Elementary general ed.
2. Elementary special ed.
3. Middle school reading teacher
4. Elementary Reading Specialist
5. Middle school special ed.
6. High school special ed.

Hmmm. If I could stay in the private school and continue to teach 1st grade. I would like to have a full class of general education students and get paid twice as much. ♥

The quest to find my future continues.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Beautiful Day

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood. Cold is what I'm told. The sun is streaming through the windows. There is frost on the car. I think the life of my roses are gone, but there is life in my heart.

Today I visit both mom and dad. Mom in Georgetown, and Dad in the hospital in Temple. I have joy.

Fruits of the Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfullness, Gentleness, Self Control

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Chelsea


Chelsea is 19! 19! My only girl is now 19. We have moved into a different stage of our lives. I have always had a deep appreciation for her thoughts. They always make me think whether I agree with her or not.


At this new stage she is living out of our house and I respect that. She pays her bills, works and goes to school. I go the grocery store with her and watch her stretch her money to buy so much food. She is very good with making money last.


Chelsea is a thinker. When we went to visit dad in the hospital, we talked afterward about the things he said. I noticed that I would say, "What do you think he meant by _______?" I very much respect her thoughts.


I love my Chelsea. I am such a proud mother. I have to follow up with, "I am not proud of all her choices," but I am proud of the woman she is becoming.