Saturday, December 31

Stuff I really did do in 2011.

Looking at my 35 things list from last year
my first thought is...

What in the hell was I thinking?
What is wrong with the chick who wrote this?!?!?

I seriously need to start living in reality.
{At least partially.}
and here's why:

1. Have a baby.
And the list should stop right there. 

Okay, maybe include one more:
2. Try to survive.

but no.
I casually included
and "hike with my boys" in the same breath.

as if having a baby and going on a hike are in the same realm.
as if adding another human being to the planet
would not turn our entire known world upside down in the best possible way

and also. I'll let you in on a little secret:
I'm not even a hiker.
I wouldn't even know where to go if I wanted to go.
which I don't. want to go hiking.
because I'm not a hiker.

I love the idea of me saying
"Come on two month old baby and 
extremely bitter, barely potty trained, 3 year old"
"Let's go hiking!" 
But reality?
uh uh.

So, I'm not going to beat myself up about all of the hikes I didn't take.
Or apple picking excursions we didn't go on.

I'm simply going to create a new list.
A list to celebrate the things I did do.
And then I'm gonna say
Yay me. 

35 Things {I actually did do} in 2011

1. Have a baby.
{yes, I'm yelling at you.
jumping up and down, with my hands waving}
That can fill up all 35 spaces right there.
Let us pause for a moment to acknowledge this big deal.

Okay let's go...

2. Survived.
We made it through the first 6 months with baby #2.

3.Worked full time through pregnancy.
{and I did a damn good job.
of course it helps that I have the best job ever.}

4. Potty trained a very strong-willed child.

5. Took a liking to turquoise and orange.

6. Was a vendor at the Queen Bee market.

8. Made and gave Chex Mix to my neighbors!

10. Started preschool.
Okay, not me.
But it felt like it was me,
 so I'm proud of myself.

11. Threw away all of my maternity clothes.

12. Became addicted to Pinterest.

13. Received a commission from Sharp Hospital
for original art work, which made me feel like a real artist.

14. Decided {once and for all}
I hate doing them in the worst possible way.
And I will never put myself through that again.

15. Gave up trying to figure out Photoshop &
discovered my beloved Picnik.

16. Fell in love. Again.

17. I had my lettering exemplar published
in Somerset.

18. Found a great counselor.

19. Helped orphans.
{As part of a fundraiser for the
Sparrow Fund and little Sergey & Xander.}

21. Learned a ton about how to run
my etsy shop from their online labs videos.

22. Bought this book and read it cover to cover because I so admire her work.

23. My Christmas Angels were published in
Cloth Paper Scissors for the first time
{so, so exciting}

24. Got a king sized bed.

25. Got to be a part of Creative Book Club.

26. Played hours of cars and trains and concert shows.

27. Survived hours of Yo Gabba Gabba.

28. Painted.

I can't think of any more right now,
but I know there's more.

The point is
even though I didn't go hiking,
I did a lot of stuff this in 2011.
So I'm going to celebrate the stuff I did do.
The life I did live.
and not get all grumpy and hard on
myself about the silly stuff I didn't do.

I think you should do the same.
I hope you do.
I hope you take a little time to celebrate the
life you've chosen to live this year.
Let me know if you do and I'll link you up.
Happy, happy new year to you, my friend.


Tuesday, December 27

shoot. I think I missed Christmas.

But thank you, Lord, that it’s over.
And thank you Mary for this post.
You always make me feel okay to be my human self.
Here what she posted:
If we have neglected the spiritual call of Advent for yet another year, and have allowed ourselves to become thoroughly frazzled by December 24, all is not lost. We are, in face, in very good shape for Christmas.
Oh good.
 That’s me.
 I qualify.

This makes me happy.
The thrill of hope.
The weary world rejoices.
These 2 lines keep ringing through my ears.

I love this version of this song.
Anything Mac Powell sings sounds sexy to me.
Even O Holy Night.

We made it, friends.
We made it through the madness.
And now we can eat fudge for breakfast.
 and exercise in the morning.
{or the morning after that}
{or maybe in January}

Saturday, December 24

The Chex Mix Conspiracy

 I had a serious wrestling match with God over this stupid Chex Mix and my stupid neighbors.
(It’s a good thing I have such a great attitude about it though.)
I had a million and one good reasons not to pass it out to my scary stranger neighbors.
And I let him have them. The whole million. And one.
And I kept telling him, my perfectly wonderful reasons:
First and most importantly:
I don’t want to.
Plain and simple.
I’m sick.
I’m covered in spit up.
I just got a stupid hair cut.
My eye liner is down to my chin, again.
It’s vitally important that I check Pinterest so that I can feel even
more inadequate in every realm of life than I already do.
Oh, my 3 year old is being an a#$hole right now. Serious.
We are spending entire DAYS {days I say} in time out.
And you me to expose unsuspecting soles to his wrath?!?
Really, Lord?
And did I mention that I don’t want to.
And He kept telling me to just do it.
So there it was.
And there I was.
It was getting dark so I wrangled Jack into the stroller with
 his Santa hat on and 43 bags of Chex Mix.
And we went to our 1st house.
And we were both nervous. Standing at the door with our little bags.
And no one was home.
And then we went to our 2nd house. And we were less nervous.
And no one was home.
And then our 3rd.

And finally Chuck answered the door.
{Thank you Chuck}
Chuck the sweet guy who lives alone.
The guy we see going to the mailbox after work in his chef outfit.
The guy who we’ve never known his name and we both shift eyes when we see each other.
That Chuck.
And my little a#$hole transformed into his sweet little 3 year old self. In a Santa hat.
“Merry Christmas. We made you some Chex Mix.”
 Then he proceeded to engage in a full on conversation about
Santa and Christmas and life in general.
And it was glorious.
All of that wrestling was worth it.
As always. It always is.
And my temporarily transformed 3 year old and I continued down our street
Spreading Chex Mix and cheer.
To the junior high boys playing football in the street.
{All I could think about was Young Life kids}
To the super cute family of 5 girls who I didn’t even know lived there.
To the cat woman with dark house and all the “go away” signs on her porch.
And each person was genuinely glad to see us & not scary.
Until Jack peed in his pants and we had to run home hop in the bath.
For the 3rd time today.

And I did it.
And God is faithful.
He always shows up.
Every single time.
Kind of reminds me of Christmas.

Thanks for reading my words dear friends.
I hope you have a really great holiday with your friends and family.

Wednesday, December 7

On being brave: love thy neighbor

do you know your neighbors?
i don't.

we've lived here 3 and a half years and
i still don't know my neighbors.
which has kind of been okay with me,
until now.

when i was 10 we moved to california.
encinitas to be exact.
and i grew up with my neighbors.
we were in and out of each other's
houses all day long.

we walked to school together.
we played capture the flag.
we dressed up in sparkley flapper dresses
we made invitations and knocked on doors for the
whole neighborhood to watch us put on "shows" in Tyme's front yard.
we sang and danced to whitney houston and the sound track to stand by me.

our families went on ski trips
and celebrated christmas eve together.
i got to grow up in community
and i didn't even know it.

but i knew it was sweet and i knew it was special.
i could feel it.
and i loved it.

what i didn't know is that it doesn't just happen.
i have to put myself out there. {ugh}
i have to make an effort. {sigh}
i have to risk being uncomfortable. {really?}
i have to make small talk with strangers.
i have to be brave.

if i want the rich life that comes from being brave.
and i do.

so here's what i'm gonna do.
i'm gonna start small.
no grandiose awkward parties or anything.

first i'm gonna walk around the neighborhood with my kiddos
and pray for each family that lives in each house.
silently of course. so as not to freak out the strangers on my street.

{i'm not saying this cause i'm super spiritual.
 i promise. i'm not.
i'm saying it because i remember going on prayer walks
on highschool campuses as a young life leader
and it calms my heart and brings me peace
and reminds me that it all belongs to God.
and i need that reminder.a lot.}

then i'm gonna bake {or buy} something
a lot of somethings
and make them pretty and put them
 in the wagon and deliver them.
door to door.
in person.
to strangers.
i know.

and all the while i will be scared and nervous and thinking
ugh. this is not what i want to be doing right now.
but i will do it and god will work and
i will say thank you lord.

and wait for my next brave assignment.


Monday, December 5

hello monday

hello christmas
hello parties
hello baking
hello Christmas tree buy decorating
{love this idea}

Source: via Mandy on Pinterest
hello handmade ornaments

hello getting my body outside
with 2 littles and moving
hello my favorite devotional

hello Elmo's Christmas dvd
{over and over and over again}
 hello Christmas blend
Help bring Xander home!
15% of all sales from the shop
will go to Xander's adoption fund
thanks to Jeanette