Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Saturday, October 9, 2010

I Quit

I’m allowed to do that, right? :)

There are still 25 more days to the meme and man, I want to write it all out. There are some great things in there to write about and some things that I would honestly love to write about. This thing really has me thinking! Yesterday’s was titled “Your Day”. I took probably 300 pictures yesterday of my day. It was great!

The truth is that no one wants to see it though. Oh yeah, you might want to for this reason or the other reason, but it won’t be for the reasons that I write it. There is a lot going on with me right now. Much, if not all, of it is my own doing…and it’s not just 1 or just 2 things. I really am just a bit of a mess these days. Train wreck waiting to happen right in front of everyone’s eyes.

Well, no one wants to see it. OK, yeah, maybe you do want to see, but not for the right reasons. So…I mentioned on facebook a while back that things feel like the game shape shifter lately. They do. When it gets going really fast, sometimes you just throw the shapes away. I think that’s where I am in this game. Some of the 30 meme questions are delightful and fun, others are not. Some moments in my life are delightful and fun, others are not.

It’s not just the meme that I quit.

Occasionally, life gives you a do-over. More often than not, it gives you a move-forward.

Whichever one it gives you, start new.

I am.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Day 5 – Your Definition of Love

Bottom line: Love is giving.

It’s that simple.

OK, maybe that isn’t simple because it is a bit more than that. It’s not just give whatever you feel like giving. It is give what that person needs. Do you need a word of encouragement? If I give that, I’m loving you. Do you need some money? If I give that, I’m loving you. Do you need me to pick up your dry cleaning? If I give that, I’m loving you. If you need me to tell you how amazing you are, but I give you roses that is not love.

I suck at loving people sometimes, but I can say that I honestly try. It’s not just my family that I try to love, it’s others too. I really do try to be what people need. That’s not to say that I become someone different to meet people’s needs, but if I look out Kara’s window and see that the neighbor’s sunroof is open and it’s raining, I call her. I hang up the phone feeling like I’ve loved her. When someone is going through a difficult time and I go to them about how they are affecting me, I’m not loving them. I’ve done both of those things within the last week.

So, give. Today, tonight, tomorrow, look at those around you and imagine what they might need and give it. I am.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Day 4: What you ate today

OK, don’t judge me. Oh, who am I kidding? That is what we do, isn’t it?  :)

Today, I have eaten a bowl of Pop’s for breakfast. I had 2 or 3 bites of cake around lunchtime. Then for dinner I had cheeseburger bake casserole and 5 baby carrots.

The day isn’t over. I’m thinking of having a banana in a bit after the kids go to bed.

So yeah, go ahead, tell me that I don’t eat enough for a lactating mother. I know, I know. I’ll try to do better tomorrow, but there are no promises. :)

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Day 1 of the 30 Day Meme

Day One: Introduce Yourself

Hi! I’m Mandy!

I’m 33, almost 34, and live in semi-small town Kansas.

I was born in a smaller town in Southern Kansas. I was born the youngest of 3 children. I have an older brother and an older sister. I was raised in a nearby town along the Oklahoma border by my mom and step-dad, along with my brother, sister and oldest step-brother. I was the baby. I was the bright-eyed, promising future, dancing feet, baby sister.

I started dancing in 1st grade and took it all the way through Junior College and into the hearts of my children. I love dance.

In April 1997, I met Jesus one night. He changed my heart and He changed my life. I’ve never really recovered, and really, everything before that is kind of blur and doesn’t hold a lot of importance when I tell you about who I am. Bottom line: I met Jesus one night.

I met Him when I was in Junior College, where I also met great, lifelong friends and danced. That was some of the best times of my life.


From there, I became a vagabond. I moved to Missouri with my sister for the summer and stayed to go to Southwest Baptist University for a semester before I toured with GX Jam on a 3 month mission trip. On that trip, I learned even more about the awesomeness of Jesus. I gave my testimony, taught people about Jesus, led a few personally, danced and grew so much!

At the end of that tour, I ended up in Chicago. I got a job as a nanny in the suburbs for a year and attended a life-changing church in Uptown. Uptown became my heart’s desire and moved there after I got married. I poured myself out there. I loved that community. It was the most densely populated 2 square miles in the country and more languages were there than in any other 2 square miles in the country. People there were hurting and hungry and I was broken for them.

I met a self-proclaimed prophet from Nigeria. He said once that God told him that if he was going to get what he wanted, he had to do it himself. He found that in me. I was a brand new Christian. I hadn’t been saved much longer than a year and I was vulnerable. I absorbed what he taught…and thus became his cult member – hook, line and sinker.

I got two amazing, radical children out of it.

Migc just turned 10. I can talk to him. I can understand him. He knows my heart and stays close to it. He always has. His pregnancy was also the one to birth my love of pregnancy and childbirth. He was my first homebirth. Migc loves sports, guns and all things boy, including his Mama.

Kristen will be 9 in a few weeks. Her and Migc are 1 year, 1 month and 1 day apart. Oh, I will leave those stories out, but life was certainly hard back then! Kristen is my polar opposite, except her sensitivity. Girl can cry at the drop of a hat just like her Mama. She’s all girl and we were told recently that she’s being submitted for testing to get into the gifted program. She likes to do make-up and hair and wear pink sparkly dresses. She also loves Jesus! She’s going to be my missionary midwife. She can watch birth shows all day long.

When they were small, their dad and I divorced. I’ll leave that story alone too. :) It happened.

I stayed in Chicago and enjoyed it. I love Chicago. It’s beautiful and it’s heavenly. I have so many amazing memories of Chicago. I found myself there. I fell in love with who God made me to be and learned to accept some things about myself and about people in general. It was fantastic. I longed for home and for my family though.

Then I met Justin. Here is that story. He rocked my world! Those early days were intense and hard…life has never stopped for us. For a year, we went through court proceedings to get Migc and Kristen to Kansas. We won and moved home. Justin built us a life!j&i

We bought a house with a yard and a drive-way. The kids flourished and my belly grew! The weekend that we moved, we got pregnant and could not have been happier.

Jaden is my special child. He cried 6 hours straight the first night he came home and never really stopped crying. He had all day colic and was sick a lot, in spite of being 100% breastfed. Now, he is 2. He is sweet and so very, very smart. He loves his siblings and his daddy! Oh forgetaboutit, he loves his mommy, his papa (Justin’s dad) and his mema (my mom) too. He knows how to show his love! He can play like we played when we were young. Cars in the dirt and zooming around like an airplane keep in busy!

About six months ago, we moved from a bigger city in Kansas to a smaller city in Kansas, but not as small as our hometown. I became a full-time military wife and delivered the 4th (and last) child.

Kara is … something else. Oh boy, that girls melts my heart. She is happy and cuddly; every mom’s greatest desire.

So, I’m introducing myself but I talked about my kids. That’s because that is who I am. I’m a stay-at-home mom. My life is poured out into my children. I’m a hippy, breastfeeder, natural birther (to the core) and I try to be as earth friendly as I can. I love tattoos, 70s decor and folk music. Jesus is still the keeper of my heart, and Justin is the lover of my heart.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


I think I might have underestimated this move. I don’t know. On one hand, I’d say I didn’t, but really, yeah, I think I didn’t understand how much everything would change…and I mean everything.

I’m a big girl. I’ve made my share of life-changing moves. I’ve gone through more transitions that I think is probably normal and I handle them pretty well. I steer my children through them pretty well too. I’m usually not too bad at rebounding and I’m not unrealistic going into situations. I often know exactly what I’m getting myself into. I knew this time too. I’m just not sure that the knowing part has helped much and there have been things I did not expect – at all.

I moved to a new town, farther away from family and to a place where I didn’t know a single soul. It’s not the first time I’ve ever done that in my life. At least I brought my husband and kids with me this time. I know them. This town is different than any I’ve ever lived in though and I don’t think I expected that.

I like it here. In fact, I love this town. It’s a neat community. It’s just different than what I’m used to. I’ve always lived in lower income neighborhoods. Really, I’ve always chosen to live there sort of. I mean, yeah, I wasn’t rich so I couldn’t move to the best, but where I’ve always been, I’ve always been needed. The schools needed me because not many parents were involved. The neighbors were sometimes just more needy people – they needed friendship mostly and someone to talk to. I would do that…often. Now, I live in a high income neighborhood. The school could care less if I even exist because they have, literally, 100% turnout at the Meet the Teacher night. The neighbors are so very nice, really nice, but they don’t need me. They make me feel like they want me, but they certainly don’t need me. It’s just very different.

I added another child to this crazy mix. I’ve been told several times that after 3 you don’t notice a difference. I’m calling bogus on that one! Kara is amazing!!! She rocks my world, but I have 4 children that need me individually. Last night, I went into the backyard to play with all four of them. I was throwing the football with Migc. Kara was in the swing but would fuss from time-to-time to have me come over and push her a little more and talk to her for a minute. Jaden wanted me to draw hearts on the sidewalk. Kristen couldn’t do it right, he had to have Mommy do it. Kristen wanted to show me her batting skills and share stories about school. It is hard to give each of them their own attention. I’m an involved mom that values their differences and tries to meet each of them where they are. Sometimes, I love being pulled in those directions and finding that I’m competent. Other times, I want to run away.

The one thing that I did not expect and have had the hardest time adjusting to is the changes in my husband. He has a new job that he *loves*. Since we’ve been together he’s had jobs that he did but didn’t enjoy, so he came home and found his fulfillment at home. Now, he loves his job and, honestly, I feel kind of less important now. His loyalties are divided now and he has changed so much! The change was instant too and he has a hard time seeing it at all. Nearly daily, it slaps me in the face though and I’ve had a hard time navigating it. He still loves me and I love him. It’s like learning to love a new him though. He does different things, says different things and values different things. I’ve been all over the board on trying to figure out how to handle it and I definitely haven’t mastered it, but I’m still working on it.

The level of adjustments and transitions has been out of this world. Everything has changed. My home, my standard of living, the number of children, my husband, my church, my body, my friends, everything. Wading through all of those transitions at once has proven to be hard! At times, harder than I can stand up under, but I will make it through. I will press on, and we’ll be better for it in the long run, right?

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Superwoman, oh Superwoman!

OK, I'm feeling it today. I'm extremely tired. My body is sore. My patience is thin.

Superwoman has left the building!

I'm ready for my husband to come home!!!! Naps don't cut it because I have so much stuff to do that I spend naptime doing it and for the last 3 days, I haven't gotten decent naps out of Kara so I don't even get much done. Yesterday, my house was clean. Today, it is trashed.
We ran around doing stuff last night and got behind on stuff at home, which made this morning crunch time for the kids and they were dragging their feet, which irritated me. When they left, Jaden screamed about everything while I was changing Kara's diaper and feeding her. Oh yeah, and she threw up, literally, threw up everywhere this morning. When she was nursing first thing, she got choked up. I think sometimes she has mucous in her throat and it chokes her a little. Well, it choked her enough to make her start gagging and gagging led to throwing up...a lot. I just held her forward and let her throw up all over the floor. There was no way I was making it to the bathroom or anything like that and it's great having hardwood that you can clean up. Boy, was it a lot, so a bit later, we had to nurse all over again because she threw up everything. She handles it like a champ though. After she was done throwing up, she looked at me and smiled. Man, I love that girl!

Anyway, Jaden was screaming. Now he's eating cereal and watching Sid the Science Kid. It's quiet. I like that. I can't do this all day though. I have to get the kitchen put back together (how does it get torn apart every single day???). I have to get MY laundry put away...and Kara's too. I really, really, really want to get Kara's walls finished washing so I can start painting so that I can put that room back together. It drives me crazy like it is! I cannot function in there! And, I have other projects that I need to move on to, but I refused to start another without finishing that one. And, I need to be Mommy. Superwoman, COME BACK!

I stayed up way too late last night. I cannot go to bed when he isn't here. I try and I just can't! Ugh!

OK, the boy is screaming again. I must go do Mommy Duty. Can I have the day off, PLEASE?!