Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Goodbye 2014

Another year is almost over.  How can that be possible?  It seems like we were just about to ring in 2014! It has gone by so fast!  But, I think overall 2014 has been a good year for us.

I turned 30 in January. I don't really feel 30 if that makes sense.  I guess I always thought by the time I was 30 I would have everything figured out.  Ya know...organized home, mom with a planner and crafts and everything together.  But, alas, that is not how 30 turned out.  Oh well.

Lexi turned 5 in May and started Kindergarten in August.  It doesn't seem possible that my sweet little 5 pound miracle is in Kindergarten.  And I hate to brag (no really I don't) but this girl is smart.  She has always been smart.  I used to call her baby genius.  She was so scared to start Kindergarten because she didn't think she was smart enough to do it.  But now she loves it.  She is reading at least at a second grade level, and I couldn't be more proud of her.  I love to see little parts of her personality start to grow and change...but it's still funny to see the things that stay the same.  From the time she was born (4 weeks early) she has done things on her own time.  She joined the world early, but didn't want to leave the NICU.  She was adamant about using her preemie bottles up until the day she started using a sippy cup...which I had to hold like a bottle because she refused. She was content to sit on the floor and play with whatever she could reach.  Crawling and walking just weren't priorities.  She is the same today.  Everything is on her time.  She does not like to be woken up before she is ready.  She stumbles out of the bedroom looking exactly like me in the mornings!  I have to remind her over and over to get dressed, or eat breakfast, or brush her teeth, just so we can get out of the house in the mornings.  She just does things on her timing.

Rex Allen turned 2 in September. And let me tell you, I just don't know how that is possible. Seems like he was just my spoiled little baby who needed to be held at all times.  But now he's my spoiled big man.  I have always felt guilty about going back to work after he was born, but it was something that had to be done.  I was able to stay home for a year after Lexi was born, and I felt like I knew everything about her.  With Rex, I felt like all his bonding was with Jacob.  He was Daddy's boy all the way.  But me being home with him all day for 5 months has changed that!  We have gotten to know each other.  He has learned how to push my buttons, and I have learned how to interpret his gibberish.  I feel like we get each other now. And he definitely melts my heart with that ornery little smile.

In July I lost my job.  I have felt every emotion possible about it.  I have gone from feeling completely lost and broken, to feeling empowered and confident in new beginnings....and all the way back again. 

My health has had highs and lows.  Botox completely changed my life, and then changed it again when I lost my insurance. 

I got to be there to welcome a new nephew into the world in April.  And stand beside my sister as she married the love of her life in October.

We raised money and walked to end Alzheimers in memory of my Grandma.  And we still miss her every single day.

Lots and lots of family time was enjoyed this year.  This is something I can never get enough of.  I feel like I thrive when I am surrounded by family.  I never take enough pictures though, and should really make that a resolution for next year. 

I got to spend an amazing long weekend in Alabama this summer with some of my very best girl friends.  It was a long drive, and per the norm, I ended up as red as a lobster.  But it was so great. 

I have very close friends who have suffered extreme loss and pain this year.  I wish I could take that away from them.  I can only hope and pray that 2015 is a better year for them, and that their prayers are answered.  At the same time, I have friends who have had their dreams come true, and their prayers answered this year.  My heart couldn't be more happy for them. 

I have been wanting to post pictures from all our Christmas celebrations, but I left my camera at my mom's house last weekend, so I haven't been able to load any of them.  I promise that is coming!

No matter if 2014 was your best or worst year ever, I am praying for 2015 to bring all your greatest wishes!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Stepping Back Up

We (my immediate family) have had a falling recently.  I'm not sure what the cause in the beginning was, it's been too long for me to remember. But we haven't been to church in about 4 months. Jacob and I looked at each other thinking there was no way that could possibly be right. But it is.  It has really been that long.  Now, Jacob did take the kids to church yesterday morning. I have been fighting some kind of cold and didn't want to spread it around, so I stayed home. 

A couple weeks ago I could feel the Lord speaking to me on and off all day.   Sadly, I kept pushing HIM to the side. I was busy trying to fill last minute Christmas orders, and take care of a tantrumming 2 year old all day.  I was busy. Too busy for God?!?  When has HE ever been too  busy for me?  That night I sat down and opened my Jesus Calling Bible Study. As I read the words on the page for December 17, tears started rolling down my face.  Remember...I was busy. I'm a mom. Trying to work at home. With a 2 year old. I'm stressed, about everything.  Those feelings had been weighing me down all day.  And God kept trying to talk to me, but I kept pushing Him away. When I finally did what God had been asking me all day to do....I realized how much better my day would have been if I would have just listened and been obedient the first time He asked. Here is an excerpt from that day:
              
Therefore, rejoice on those days when you drag yourself out of bed, feeling sluggish and inadequate.  Tell yourself that this is a perfect day to depend on Me in the day, you will discover at bedtime that Joy and Peace have become your companions.  You may not realize at what point they joined you on your journey, but you will feel the beneficial effects of their presence.

I don't know about you, but when I lay down in bed at night, Joy and Peace are things I need to feel the most. 

Of course I was so intrigued by what I had read, that I had to go on to the next day's devotional and see what it had to say.  What do I find on December 18?  A lesson about problems.  Who doesn't have problems?  So this should be the perfect lesson for everyone. I mean, I've always known that God is there with us through our problems, but I have never looked at it quite like this.

In faith, thank Me for your problem. Ask Me to open your eyes and your heart to all that I am accomplishing through this difficulty.  Once you have become grateful for a problem, it loses its power to drag you down. On the contrary, your thankful attitude will lift you up into heavenly places with Me. From this perspective, your difficulty can be seen as a slight, temporary distress that is producing for you a transcendent Glory never to cease!

Too often we face hardships and fail to view suffering with an eternal perspective. Our Heavenly Father always has a plan and purpose for adversity in our lives, and we can profit from it if we respond correctly.

It is easy to lose heart when nothing seems to be going our way. To just give up, as if it wasn't meant to be. But we have to continue to remind ourselves (and each other) how great a calling God has given us in Jesus.

Whatever storms may arise, we have an infallible and almighty God, who will be a sun and a shield to those who love Him!

That.Is.Powerful!! 


The struggle is real

I've been really wondering what I should turn this blog into.  I have met so many great people, through their blogs.  And I'm dying to know how they get that interaction. How do they get a zillion followers, when I can only get 5?
I think part of the reason is that I tend to blog sporadically.  I let my real life get in the way of doing anything on the blog.
Then there's the fact that my topics jump all over the place. Should I stick with just one theme?

Do I need to start a whole new blog so that all of this "past" gets left there in the past?

I'm seriously looking for advice.  So if you can leave me a comment with your suggestions, that would be great!!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Apologies

I feel like I owe everyone in my life an apology. 
It feels like I let everyone down over and over.  I'm a burden. 
I'm sick. All the time. And I don't know why.
When I'm sick, I complain about being sick. Which makes me a bigger burden.
I don't have a job. And I've had no luck finding one.
This isn't the first time I've put my family in this situation. It all boils down to me and my problems.
So I'm sorry.
I'm sorry.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

the hard stuff

So I posted the update blog, getting everyone up to date on what's been going on. But then there's some stuff that I didn't feel like fit in with that blog. Mainly the stuff no one wants to hear. But I use this as a place where I can keep it real. So...
I feel myself slipping into depression more. It has happened enough times that I can recognize it now. I haven't been as on top of some of my meds since I lost my insurance. It's just that I get up every day and do the same things. Every day. I'm going through a rough place with parenting, where no matter the punishment, my kids refuse to listen to me. So I feel like I'm constantly punishing someone, or yelling at someone. I'm also dealing with nearly fail migraines. Part of me feels like I do a pretty good job of toughing it out. But another part of me knows I am failing.
thank God Jacob has been a saint through all of this. Sending me to bed early while he takes care of the kids. But even when he sends me to bed I am still going over it in my mind and calling myself a failure and a bad mom.
another issue is sleep...or the lack thereof. I am lucky to get 5 broken hours of sleep. I don't sleep for more than 2 hours at a time. I have built up a tolerance to everything....so Ambien is hit or miss if it will work. Benadryl is my next go-to med. But I don't tell anyone how many I take per night. And even then...it takes 2 hours to fall asleep and only sleep for 2 hours.
well, enough complaining. Lexi is calling me to read her a bedtime story. If you made it to the end....thank you! It means more than you know.

it's been a while

Wow! I can't believe it's already December! This year has flown by... especially since July when I lost my job. So let's catch up a little.
I was pretty hopeful right after I lost my job. I had some interviews lined up within weeks. But nothing came of them.
So school started for Lexi in August! Big kindergartener now. She was so scared to go to school.... until the first day when she realized that she was in fact smart enough to be there. The best part of me not having a job is that I get to drop her off and pick her up at school every day! And it's actually something that I worry about not being able to do when I look at jobs. So that means Rex stays home with me during the day. It took us a while but we finally have a pretty good routine down. Up until a couple weeks ago he would nap ok on most days, so I would nap too. But on days where he wouldn't nap I would find myself getting very frustrated. And with my history of sleep issues, it's probably best that I don't nap. ::insert super sad face here because I super love nap time:: So in the past 2 weeks I find myself much less stressed by just keeping him up all day.
I'm getting some unemployment. It is helpful, as we lost my income, and mine and the kids' insurance. And of course I'm still searching the internet for jobs. A month or so ago I went and signed up with American Stafford again, as they helped me get the job with Chart.
n the meantime though I started making some crochet things. My mom is big into craft shows, so I figured she could take some of my stuff with her and see what happens. surprisingly, my infinity scarves seemed to have caught on this year, and I have sold several of those. Plus some special order character hats. Then on top of that I started making headbands with flowers and them putting bottlecaps inside the flowers. So I have done a few of those. It has helped give me some extra Christmas money.
I was able to make a custom scarf for Jacob to give his co-worker. I hope he has his camera ready as she opens it.
In leftover stuff I should have enough stuff to give Lexi's 2 teachers a scarf for Christmas.

Besides helping mom with some custom orders, I got pretty caught up. A friend is having a baby girl, so I knew I needed to start her blanket. The stitch I chose is kind of intense, but I love it so much.
Then I have 2 more baby blankets to do. Custom colors and custom patterns for twins.

So my days are filled with getting kids fed, Lexi to school, me and rex back home, Netflix on TV and crochet until my fingers fall off. Then go get Lexi from school. Feed them a snack, clean the house before Jacob gets home. By that time I generally don't even want to look at a crochet hook.

All of this on an average of 5 hours of sleep per night. So I drink a lot of coffee in the mornings, lol.
And fighting migraines because cu lost my insurance so I can't afford to go bet Botox done again.

Right now, I say I wouldn't trade my life. I have a great life. I just wish I was providing my family with a income. And of course I long for days when I talk to my peers. People who listen to me. People who agree with me. Unlike the littlest that I spend all my time with. Here I am. 5 months later and there really isn't a day that goes by that I don't wish I had my job back. I took it as far as to beg for my job back and obviously that didn't work.
So my next steps in life will be to move forward. Step over everything I'm still tripping over from the past. And just move on.

I will try to blog more and definitely post some pictures soon.