Monday, June 18, 2012

A Couple of Updates

Happy Monday! I had to laugh this morning when I got into work. My co-worker put this quote by Homer Simpson on my desk: "Lisa, if you don't like your job, you don't strike: You just go in every day and do it really half assed. That's the American way." Now, I don't do anything half assed but I did find this very humorous! Gotta love the co-workers. At least they help make the time at work a little more enjoyable.

Also, I didn't end up doing the Highland Games. I was bummed but in the end, I'm glad I didn't go. It gave me a whole extra day to do stuff around the house (and go to a doggie birthday party!) and gave me some time to think and gain perspective in some areas. That will be coming in a later post. For now, I have to get to work.

Have a great day!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Wherever You Are

I have this post on my work desk, where I see it often: "Wherever you are, be all there." (Jim Elliot) And I often find myself wondering but what if I CAN'T be all there, no matter how hard I try? I'm here, plugging away at it but my heart isn't in it. Then I remember a friend once told me if  you're not happy where you're at, you either have to change where you're at or change your heart.

I cannot change where I'm at. I have to work, in this season of my life, even though I would rather be at home, running the household, keeping everything and everyone in line and on task.

So, I work on changing my heart. I read a blog this morning from (in)courage entitled "When You Feel Like a Failure" and it couldn't have been more timely. I have been feeling like SUCH a failure lately! I'm disorganized, forgetful, moods swings like the temperature changes in Michigan in the spring. After reading, I am challenged to answer this question: what does success look like to me?

Success to me is following God and His will, praising Him, giving Him the glory in everything I do. Success to me is a happy household where everyone's needs are met- meals, clothes on our backs, a roof over our heads. Lots of laughter, quality time, kindness, and understanding are also a part of my recipe for success.

I strongly feel that God's plan for me as a wife and mom is to be home, planning and organizing for our family, able to join my kids at school for functions and to be able to help out in the classroom.

I have been single for over a year now and have had to provide food, shelter, and clothing for the boys and myself. I paid off some serious debt (which felt wonderful!) and have a little more left to pay off. My car is 10+ years old and has needed some pretty significant maintenance and will probably need to be replaced sometime soon. For these reasons, I have had to work.

I've missed school functions, the boys have spent time being cared for by someone other than myself, dinner is later than I'd like, my house isn't as clean as I'd like, and my planning and organizing has severely backslidden, leaving me frustrated and feeling like a failure.

But, you do what you've got to do. And for me, for now, that requires working. So, I need to change my heart. But HOW do I do that? My heart LONGS to be at home. Thinking about continuing to work makes me physically sick to my stomach.

Romans 5:34 says: "More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope"

I am SUFFERING right now. But the Bible tells me that suffering produces these other things- endurance, character, and HOPE. Oh, and what's that? It says we REJOICE in our sufferings... I AM thankful that I am ABLE to work, that my employer is flexible with my hours and pays me well, that it is a fairly low stress job that doesn't overwhelm me, that through this job our needs ARE met.

I cannot make my heart not long to be at home. But I can tell my heart what my head already knows- that this is only for a season- and BELIEVE it and make the best out of it. Because, afterall, I have all the ingredients for my recipe for success, it just might not look the same as I'd like it to... for now...

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Quitter? Maybe. Indecisive? For Sure.

I committed months ago to do this event called the Highland Games, a heavy events sort of competition with Scottish background (stone put, caber toss, heavy bag for height, heavy weight for height and distance...) I've been practicing; it's a lot of fun and I'm doing pretty good in most events.

See that there stone fly?

And that bag, I heaved into the air with that there pitchfork.
This is probably my favorite event.

I even bought a kilt to wear. And it's purple! When I committed to it, however, I was just in the beginning stages of planning the wedding and we didn't have the date nailed down yet and I had NO IDEA how insanely busy I would be getting the house ready for us to move in. Seriously, the weekend before the wedding is going to be serious crunch time. And it's the weekend of the Highland Games.

This is my sister trying to pick up the caber. Yes, 16' tall and we have to balance it in our clasped hands then flip it end for end. This is one I won't be participating in and my sister already decided to drop out completely because she didn't want to wreck her body.

So, I'm stuck. I don't know what to do. I'm not really letting anyone down by not going. My coach and girlfriend who is also participating (and has a matching kilt) might be a tad disappointed but it's an individual competition so as far as the competition goes, it's not hurting anyone if I don't go. And at the same time, I don't want to disappoint my coach and my friend.

If I do participate, that's one whole Saturday of crunch time that I cannot help with the house which means disappointing my fiancee and probably a lot of extra stress/ tension between the both of us. Plus, I can return the $60 kilt I bought that will most likely only be worn one time. But it's a KILT and I was going to wear it. It would be FUN!

So, as it stands right now, I guess what I should do is be honest with my coach and friend and hope they're understanding and still love me when it's done. BUT I'm not 100% sold on that yet. Stay tuned for my final decision and the outcome.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Working Weekend

I had hoped to get this post out yesterday but alas... we were busy with drywall! And, I must say I was more than ready to go back to work today and RELAX!

Before the weekend, the room was studded in and we finished running the electrical on Friday.

Saturday morning, we got up and went to Lowe's. We decided on 12' boards of plywood because that would mean less seams. But it also meant trying to get it home hanging out the back of the truck without breaking and moving that very heavy stuff around! But, we work great together and managed it all quite nicely if I don't say so myself.

By the end of Sunday, we had the outer walls done.

And last night, we did the inner walls. (I don't have a pic of that but I like this one, how neat it all looks in there!) Now all that needs done is the closet. Then, on to mudding!

And, the lesson of the weekend: no texting and drywalling, you might get stabbed with a utility knife!

Monday, June 4, 2012

What I've Learned

That love really IS a choice

That I am not as strong as I'd like to think I am.

That I do sometimes like to sit back & enjoy instead of always being the hostess with the mostess.

That life will happen without me planning every moment of it and it's actually nice to not plan every moment all of the time.

Being in debt sucks. Being debt free is completely freeing- even if getting out of debt leaves you broke.

That sometimes when life gets tough, others don't know how to handle it and walk away.

How to forgive; what true forgiveness really is.

That God is the only one who can fill me up.

And the fun one: if you leave your newspaper in the box, they won't deliver more.

Friday, June 1, 2012

It's Really Happening!

When I pulled into the driveway yesterday afternoon, I was greeted with this sign:

Wow. It hit me like a ton of bricks. This is really happening! In just 3 weeks, I am going to be married and moving out of this place the boys and I have called home for exactly one year and moving into a new place that already feels kind of like home. I am thoroughly ecstatic to not just be starting a new chapter but to be starting a whole new book but until now, it's all seemed sort of surreal.

Granted, the boys never did really like this place- it's small (they can't play hockey in the kitchen!) and there's no neighborhood to run around. But I liked it. It was cozy and very affordable. And, with only two bedrooms and one bathroom, it was far less to clean than our previous house with four bathrooms, four bedrooms, two living rooms, and a HUGE kitchen/ dining area. I like to clean but with everything else going on this past year, it was a nice reprieve to not have to take care of a big house and yard! It was perfect for us, for a transition place. We did a lot of loving, grieving, growing, and sharing in this house. I might actually miss it just a teensy bit.