Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I've Found Another...


Dear Scrap booking,

For years I watched people become enamored with your little craft. I swore to myself I'd never be taken in by you. Too much work...not enough time.

Four years ago, upon my move to tiny town, somehow my defenses were down and I gave in.

Everyone was doing it.

And I loved it. And in true Sarah form, I went full-boar. Eight of these babies I finished in about 2 1/2 years.
(Blogger is being totally disobediant about turning this picture)

I've known this was coming though. I've lost that loving feeling. I tried to rekindle it...I did. But it's gone. Long gone. Scrap booking, you've been replaced with a new, faster and cheaper method...called Shutterfly.

Oh, don't worry, we'll have one last hurrah...there's one last book that's half-done...my obsessive personality can't allow that...it must be finished...in January at a special scrap booking retreat that I am still going to go to even if I quit scrapping because I love that retreat ;)

Back to my point. It was fun while it lasted. But all good things come to an end, eventually...it's not you, it's me...or something like that.

My Deepest Regards,

Sarah

Friday, June 26, 2009

Can't Come Up With a Title...


This morning in the parsonage...


  • I awoke to the fact that Julie will arrive in 35 days...and then I wondered if she'll need knee pads for volleyball camp when she comes, because I'd hate for her to go and not have the appropriate attire on her third day in America. What kind of Pseudo mom am I if I don't even know what she is supposed to wear!?!?

  • After dragging myself out of bed, I was greeted by Jake who had picked out his own clothes and dressed himself.

Nice choice with the dark socks and sandals little buddy...elderly men all over would be so proud of you...although I'm not sure they'd choose to wear their shoes on the wrong feet. The shirt on backwards...that's just a bonus.
  • I went out to water my plants...still in my pajamas. Classy.

  • I found this in my fern:


  • I ran over to my neighbors house to take the cookies out of the oven for her (because we live in tiny town and we do that sort of thing...it's the best place on earth.) I still had my pajama pants on....and I was out of breath when I got back. What? How, you ask? Aren't I training for a 1/2 Mary? Why yes, technically I am. Except this week I have not ran once. Not once. I am 14 miles behind for the week...and scheduled to run 9 tomorrow....which is my 11 year wedding anniversary. Did you catch all that?

  • I learned something about myself this week. This week has been full of ups and downs. Big ones. For some people, running is an escape. It is not that for me...I so wish it was. Physically, running is a great stress reliever for me...mentally though, it's just one more thing to do...one more thing required of me. This week, I just wasn't up to it. I needed a break. I fell off the running wagon. Monday though...I'll get back on...and pray that my body decides not to punish me too badly for the week long break.

  • Tonight, my mom is taking the boys overnight so that Ben and I can have a date and a quiet house. Eleven years...we were babies when we got married. 20 and 23...but we were ready, as crazy as that sounds. And it has been an amazingly wonderful 11 years...which sounds even crazier ;)

  • God gets the glory for it. All of it. Happy Weekend!

Monday, June 22, 2009

He's Got My Attention.

Friday I blogged that it felt like somone was messing with me.

Turns out...the messing was/is not quite over.

I find that unfortunate.

The rest of the story:

Ben's car is old and on its last leg of life...but it gets him to work and back...and it's paid for...so we heart that '91 Buick. But Saturday, the good 'ol Buick pretty much gave us fair warning that it would like to rest in peace...soon. It's timing on this...not so good.

Meanwhile...two different people in our tiny church suffered small heart attacks, both are ok, but recovery is long...

Sunday evening we were at church and Ben was preaching a particularly great sermon when the tornado sirens went off in tiny town. Our church has no basement. When I heard the deacon announce "everyone to the parsonage basement" I had to laugh...because my 100 year old basement/toy room is, quite frankly, a messy pit. I quickly replayed the conversation I'd had with myself just a couple days prior. It went something like this:

This basement is a pit. I should really pick up all the toys. Nah...the boys will just mess it up again and besides...no one ever sees it.

Famous last words.

So, everyone at church filed down into my basement. And oddly enough...I didn't even really care that they saw the big mess. I have three boys. I have bigger problems to worry about.

Hello. My name is Sarah...and I have a messy basement (and garage.)

The weather cleared enough for all but one family to go home. Pete and his three boys were able to hang out for awhile till the storm passed. Pete's wife is taking a class and working right now, and he shared that it had been a long day and he'd gotten inside and thought to himself that it would really be easier to stay home tonight rather than driving (the half hour) to church. But he figured if it was going to storm, he'd rather be at church than at home.

Ben and I were so thankful he had. God used him to encourage us...when we didn't even realize we needed encouragement. Pete shared some things he was praying about for us and our church...big things...and I laughed.

Remember another Sarah that laughed at God's big plans? Yeah.

Pete said to me, you laugh...but God can do it.

And he is right. God can do it. I never fail to believe that God can do big things. But I so often fail to believe that He will do big things. Because I feel I don't deserve for Him to do such things.

And then He reminds me it's not about being deserving. He's given me above and beyond what I deserve. And at the same time spared me some horrible consequences, that naturally speaking...I totally deserved.

This week has brought me to my knees...in a good way. God's got my attention, and right now I'm almost giddy with anticipation to see what He's got planned.


Friday, June 19, 2009

Someone's Messing With Me...

It has been a weird week here in the parsonage.

The weather: Weird. It's finally hot and humid, but it's been storming and then nice and then storming...you get the idea.

My children: Monday-Wednesday I could have sworn that something had taken over their little bodies. Thankfully they've returned to normal yesterday and today.

The mower: Demon-possessed. I'm sure of it. I'll spare you the details.

The coffeemaker: Three years ago I ditched my simple Mr. Coffee because I believed I needed something fancier. I did what any reasonable Pastor's wife does...I donated the old one to the church ;) The new one lasted less than a year and broke. So I bought another fancy model...and today, that machine had enough nerve to not brew ANYTHING. And I just cleaned it with smelly vinegar on Monday...how dare it.

I once again did what any reasonable Pastor's wife does who lives 27 steps from the church...I marched over there and "borrowed" my simple old, trusty coffee pot. Because pastors wife needs coffee. Bad.

And it brewed me coffee.

God bless it.

And soon, I will drive to Wal-Mart (again) and purchase a new coffee pot. But this time...I'm buying the cheapest model I can find. No timers, no bells and whistles...just the $9.99 special...which will probably last forever. Maybe.

Anyways, my point originally was...that it's almost as if someone has been messing with me this week. You ever feel like that? Like I keep waiting for someone to pop out from around the corner and say "Ah ha! We were totally messing with you!" Because THAT seems like the only reasonable explanation :)

I give you pictures that will undoubtedly make you feel A: thankful that your children are incapable of making messes this huge or B: thankful that someone else's house looked like this.

You are welcome.

Because it's rained there are puddles...
Guess why he has chocolate around his mouth...
Yeah...


The mudroom...

My Bible has been laid open to Psalm 65 for the past few days. I can't move past it.

Verse 3 says: Our guilt overwhelms us, but you forgive our sins.

The rest of the chapter is good too...but it seems this week I needed to be reminded of that very thing.

I fail. Profusely. I am less than stellar in every area of my life...which leaves a feeling of guilt behind. On weeks like this, it overwhelms...literally.

God brought me back to the very basics of my faith. I am a sinner, saved by His grace. Forgiven...over and over and over again. And through that verse this week, my load of guilt lightened. He picks me back up, brushes me off and places me back on the path He's planned.

I couldn't be more thankful for that.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Mama Means Business...

To say that my children are behaving like wild beasts strung out on some substance that makes them seemingly unable to control themselves or the volume at which they speak or make noise would be....

A VAST UNDERSTATEMENT. And a run-on sentence.

I am losing my mind.

I am losing my patience. Not losing actually...it's completely and utterly gone.

I am taking them to the pool today even if it does thunderstorm.

I am going to make them swim and swim and SWIM and if that does not burn off enough energy then I will follow them as they walk jog the 8 miles home.

And then maybe, just maybe, tomorrow when I politely ask them to BE QUIET and STOP KILLING ONE ANOTHER they will stop and think...

I better listen to her. She means business. Remember yesterday when she made us tread water for four hours and then jog 8 miles home?

Who am I kidding. They'll never remember that long.

I love Summer, right?!?

Monday, June 15, 2009

Classic Me...

Forty seven days left till Julie comes.

The other day a good friend asked me what I was most nervous about as far as having Julie here. It caught me a little off guard, because I'm not really nervous...but the question somehow made me think maybe I should be nervous about something at least.

So I began to make a list of things to be nervous about...because if you're me, that's what you do.

I might be a little nervous that...
  • we will totally annoy her or she will be bored out of her mind at our house.
  • I won't complete the master list I started the day we found out she was coming.
And that my friends, wraps up my worries. Complex, aren't I.

Here is my To Do Before Julie Comes List:

  • Clean attic, take stuff to Goodwill/garage sale - check
  • New bathroom vanity and sink - check
  • re-do Jake's room (for Julie) Paint/carpet - check
  • Bedding for Julie - check
  • New towels - check
  • Caulk tub - check
  • wireless router
  • clean garage
  • Basement organized
  • Pantry organized
  • Paint living room - check
  • paint trim in bathroom
  • paint trim in hallway
  • paint trim in boys' room
  • move Jake's clothes to other closet - check
  • alarm clock for Julie - check
  • hang stuff on her bedroom wall
  • Paint bed - check
  • paint desk - check
  • paint cupboards - check
  • print off memory card pics and sort
  • get scrapbooks caught up
  • paint back door
Notice how most of the things have absolutely nothing to do with Julie coming?!? Like painting the trim in the boys room...I'm guessing she's not really gonna mind if their trim needs "touching up." Or if my scrapbooks are caught up. Sheeesh.

This list is classic Sarah, just so you know.

No wonder I'm a little worried we'll annoy her ;)


Thursday, June 11, 2009

I'm Punishing...

Ben took the personality test from yesterday and it confirmed what we already knew to be true.
He's the exact opposite of me.

I was surprised at how closely it wrapped me up...in an oversimplified way.

It says that my "enthusiastic encouragement" is "charming." I'm assuming that by "charming" they also mean "annoying." If that's the case: Right on.

There's one sentence though that totally nailed me.

Although you strive for harmony, when your values or ethics are violated, you can be very emotional, confrontational, and even punishing.

I'd like to lie here, but the truth is, that is EXACTLY me.

It's been rearing it's ugly head quite often lately.

Case #1: A week or so ago Billie and I were running on the trail, seven miler. We do our best to stay on our side of the trail so that bikers and other runners have room to pass us. We also have our ipods on so high that we would likely not even hear a nuclear explosion (that will likely come from North Korea.) Anyways, a middle aged man who was obviously not a hard-core bicyclist because A - he was not wearing a helmet or spandex and B - he had knee high dress socks on with loafers...apparently had to go a little too far around us for his liking. After passing us he turned around and yelled what were probably obscenities. Billie and I looked at each other, and then at him with our most confused expressions. He proceeded to give us, what I like to call "the naughty finger" for another 15 seconds before riding out of sight.

I. Was. FURIOUS. How dare he treat two women like that?!? We didn't even do anything wrong! I kept wishing I had a taser or in the very least some pepper spray because I totally would have chased him down. Sadly, I am not even kidding. Billie, on the other hand, offered the opinion that he must really have some other problems going on in his life for him to react to us that way.

Hmmm...who's the pastor's wife again? Oh yeah...that'd be me. Sheesh.

Case #2 - I cannot turn on the news lately without my blood pressure rising. The government is making me CRAZY. What is happening to America? I'll spare you my rant, mostly because, like my personality synopsis said, I really do not enjoy confrontation. I especially hate bantering back and forth on blogs. It's completely not the point of why I blog.

I post, and then lovely people say kind things back to me...that's why I blog ;)

I also digress easily...back to my point...everyones personality is flawed. Some more than others. How 'bout you? If an incredibly rude man makes an obscene gesture to you do you want to tase him or pray for him? Inquiring minds want to know.

I'm working on it....I'm working on it :)

I'll resist getting a tshirt that says "Be nice to me, or I will tase you" I'll also resist ordering this.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Me

I went in search of a meme today. Desperate times call for desperate measures, my friends. It was that, or discuss the unseasonably cool weather that is keeping me from the pool. (Which I totally wrote a post about and then deleted after realizing how pathetically boring it was.)

Anyways, I found a quiz instead. A 70 question long quiz. The results were quite intriguing...

Your result for The LONG Scientific Personality Test...

ENFJ- The Teacher

You scored 64% I to E, 47% N to S, 29% F to T, and 21% J to P!


Your type is known as the teacher, or the educating mentor. You also belong to the larger group, called idealists. You tend to bring out the best in other people. You lead without seeming to do so. People are naturally drawn to you. You expect the very best from people which takes the form of enthusiastic encouragement which is so charming that people try their best not to disappoint you. You share your personality type with 3% of the population.

You need to feel a deep and meaningful connection to your romantic partners, and go to great lengths to understand and please your mate. Harmony is vitally important to you, and you often put others' needs before your own. You have a pretty thin skin and are easily hurt. Although you strive for harmony, when your values or ethics are violated, you can be very emotional, confrontational, and even punishing. However, you are very insightful about the underlying cause of conflicts, and an excellent communicator, so you have the tools to bring about a quick and peaceful resolution as long as you can keep control of your facilities. You want to be appreciated for your thoughtfulness and compassion. You need your partner to make a real effort to get to know you. Above all, you need to be able to express your feelings and have them taken seriously.

Your group summary: idealists (NF)

Your type summary: ENFJ

Take The LONG Scientific Personality Test at HelloQuizzy


All right, let me hear your thoughts...I'll share what I think tomorrow :)

Monday, June 8, 2009

Weird Dreams

Towards the end of each of my pregnancies I had weird dreams about the baby. I mean weird.

With my first, Noah, I remember dreaming that Ben and I were at a big stadium for some event and I had to go to the bathroom. I looked and looked and finally found one and as I sat on the toilet the baby just came out, IN THE TOILET. Oh, it gets better. When I turned around to get my first-born out of the public toilet, I was shocked to see that he wasn't actually human, but a baby piglet.
I awoke in a cold sweat, because weirdly enough the dream seemed completely real. I remember being so relieved when I felt my still huge belly, confirming the fact I had not actually given birth to a pig in a toilet at a stadium.

Although, the idea of the baby "just coming out" would have been nice.

Anyways. I am not pregnant. However, I am expecting a teenage daughter to arrive in less than two months now...and the dreams are starting.

How weird is that?

Saturday night I dreamt that she got here and couldn't speak English and I couldn't understand anything she said! And I couldn't figure it out, because we'd emailed back and forth for months and I had understood everything. The kicker though, everyone else could understand her...EXCEPT me!

Last night I dreamt that she'd arrived at the airport but we were having all kinds of trouble getting there to pick her up. Fist we were at the wrong one, then I couldn't get everyone rounded up again to get to the next airport, and then we couldn't find the way and everything seemed to be in slow motion and I just kept thinking SHE'S WAITING AND WE'RE NOT THERE! WE ARE TERRIBLE PARENTS! :)

Did I mention before I got married I kept dreaming my teeth became too large for my mouth and then all crumbled and fell out? Good times.


*image courtesy of google images*

Friday, June 5, 2009

The Opposite of Deep Thoughts

Because I feel like  boring you...

  • I cannot stop thinking about the last chapter of The Bible Study we finished.  Self-Control.  I went through it at a snails pace, trying to soak it all in.  I keep reading and re-reading it in hopes that it will consume me until I actually start doing it.  Beth Moore says it best, "Many times we don't have a knowledge problem, we have an obedience problem."  Yep...that would be me.
  • Ran 6 miles last night faster than normal and it felt great!  Weird how that happens.  I'll attribute it to these little tasty things.   I'm still trying to get the hang of eating them while running without choking on their sugary goodness.
  • My baby boy turns FOUR tomorrow.  Why four already?!?  Just yesterday...
  • Turns out saying I'm going to take a break from blogging actually makes me feel free to blog.  Weird.
  • I'm going to start writing down everything I eat in order to shock my brain out of denial about what I'm really eating.  My poor brain...it's in for a rude awakening.  
  • I'm off to Wal-Mart with 3 boys.  Good times.  You can bet that along the way I will mull over whether or not I will swing by Starbucks and 
  1. spend too much money on a sugary delicious drink.
  2. then be forced to write it down in my new Dwight Schrutte notebook that I bought at Target because I totally thought it would be perfect for my new food journal.
  3. both try to remember and forget what Beth Moore had to say about self-control.
  4. wish I didn't really have a free will and that God would just make me do as I should...it would be so much easier, no?
Happy Friday!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Spandex

Last Saturday was another 7 mile run on the training schedule.  It hurt.  I didn't particularly like it. A point that I probably mentioned to my running partner, Billie, about 234 times...approximately.   Granted, I think most of the time she couldn't hear me because of her ipod, but still.

Any of you who have a running partner, or any kind of exercising partner know that it is a unique relationship.  You sweat, hurt, push, sympathize, complain, laugh, and overcome...together.  

There's a raw honesty.  No pretenses.  No facades.  

We talk about things on the trail that I would not likely share with anyone else...mostly dealing with weird bodily stuff that occurs while running.  Like what, you ask?  Can't tell you...because there's a rule.

What's said on the trail...stays on the trail.

Ok, well not everything has to stay on the trail.  We had a little conversation about Spandex that I thought I would highlight for you.  

It all started because we'd overheard someone make a comment about a recent 5k walk/run.  The walkers were a little "put-off" by the runners need to wear such tight clothing.  This is particularly amusing to me, because my non-runner self used to think the exact. same. thing.

I figured all those runners I saw in their Spandex were just showing off.  And while I passed them in my mini-van, while munching on french fries, I thought, c'mon people...we know you're not lazy, but do you really need to rub it in with the spandex?!?

And then I became a runner who ran for longer than five miles...and then I GOT it.

Here's the deal on Spandex:
  • It is not an option when running long distances...it is a necessity.
  • Loose, cotton clothing does ONE thing when running for a long time...it rubs.  It chafes.  It causes unmentionable soreness in unmentionable places...get my drift?!?  
  • The only people that actually look good in spandex are Olympic athletes.  Period.
There's something else I've learned too.  Runners have no shame.  Pride is checked at the door when headed out for a run.  I wear stuff out that door that, if I were not totally distracted by the process of running, I would NEVER be caught dead in.  But when I head out for that run...it's about the run and whatever it's gonna take to make the process a little more comfortable.  

It's the only time in my life that comfort trumps cuteness.  *smile*






Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Just For a Time...


Have you ever notice how your blog sort of takes on a life of it's own?  Mine has.  At least if feels that way.  It started as a place to just sort of journal when I felt like it...and then actual readers come along.  And then readers and bloggers became friends...who knew!?!?  And when I don't blog, I feel outta the bloggy world loop...as if I'm missing something.

And then I start to wonder...am I running my blog, or is it running me?   

And here's my dilemma.  It's summer.  It's tons-o-fun.  I love all my readers and blogs I read, I really, REALLY do.  But no matter how fun blog-life is...it can't compare to real life, which is just so much better.  

SO, I'm stepping back a little for Summer time.  I'll still be here to fill your lives with information that you really didn't even need to know, it just won't be as often...maybe a couple times a week. 

Your mind will thank me later.

My reading and commenting on your posts is likely to be less than stellar as well.   No worries though...come the end of summer I'll be back in full swing.  

I just didn't want you to think I was snubbing you.

Or being rude...I hate rudeness.

Or that some natural disaster had decided to strike.

Or that I'd fallen of the face of the earth. 

I'm just enjoying my family,warm weather, green grass, the public pool, and hot dogs at the baseball diamond.

Speaking of hot dogs...last night at the t-ball game I ate a hot dog and nachos for supper.  It's amazing what I'll eat in order to not have to cook.  God bless Mondays for the month of June...and God bless t-ball games....and Summer.

Did I mention I love Summer?  

ONE more thing...it is now officially LESS than 2 months till Julie comes!


*image courtesy of google images