Saturday, February 27, 2010

Too tired blog. Enjoy this famous Girl Scout song know as "Taps". In honor of the Girl Scouts I did not make eye contact with or buy cookies from BECAUSE...I AM STRONG!! (For today anyway!)

Day is done
Gone the sun
From the lake,
From the hills,
From the sky.

All is well, safely rest.
God is nigh.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Must Share!

Testosterhome says it all so beautifully. All the things I needed to hear today. Thank you, God, for using us to give your words to each other.

I Like Me

On the heels of my very insecure post, now I must have a secure post. I am not a fragile feather blowing through life hoping people will like me. I am not wishy-washy. I hope that isn't how I came across. I could go on and on describing those few that make me crazy-but I'm not going to. Let's just say most of them are not a part of my 'real life'. We rub elbows infrequently.

Today, I will tell you ten things I like about me:
  1. I am not perfect and I don't pretend to be. I am very honest about my past and my present struggles if it will help someone else.
  2. I will probably not ever win a 'mother-of-the-year' contest. However, I am breaking a pattern of generational sin with my kids. I love them and I have devoted my life to them. They are not out there trying to figure out life on their own. I am committed to them and their father. I love them all and it doesn't depend on their behavior (most days).
  3. I don't have high expectations of people. It doesn't rock my world if I find out someone talked bad about me or someone else. I've done it; you've done it; we all do it every once in a while. I have a full-time job keeping what comes out of my mouth wholesome. I don't really have time to monitor what comes out of everyone else's mouth.
  4. You could call me at 2 AM if you needed help. I can't say I would have the cheeriest disposition about it, but I would try to help you in any way I could. If this became a habit, I would set some serious boundaries with you but still try to help you.
  5. I am not OCD. I joke that I would like to be-but really I don't want to be. I value people over cleanliness and cleaning up after having company is something I truly enjoy. I savor the fellowship we had while I tidy up.
  6. I love a spontaneous visit-you coming to my house or me coming to yours. I LOVE them. I have very few people in my life that I can do this with because my husband firmly believes it is the rudest behavior ever. (Us spontaneously visiting, not being visited by others.)
  7. I love my pets. For me that means they must live among us-in our house. I secretly feel sorry for you and your pets if you think animals should only live outside. There is nothing better than being wrapped up in a blanket, reading a good book, having a dog on your feet and a kitty curled up in your lap.
  8. I love public speaking. I love speaking to a big group. I am way better at writing and public speaking than I am at small group conversations unless it is a small group of close friends.
  9. While I secretly wish I had a best friend, I KNOW I am not best friend material anymore. My husband is the only best friend I can handle. That doesn't keep me from having lots of very close friends in the same boat.
  10. I am brutally honest. I say brutally because at times I am brutal about it and expecting it from others. It is a blessing and a curse. (Thanks to Monk for that lovely saying.)

So there are just a sampling of things I like about me. ( : Oh, oh and I'm funny!! Mostly in a smart alec way, but still funny. PLUS, I LOVE to laugh.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Do you like me?

I have a confession to make. I like for people to like me. It really troubles me when they don't. I live in AWE of those people everyone likes. HOW? Were they just born with it or is it a skill they had to perfect? I make friends really easily and usually keep my closest friends, well, forever. I have some that date all the way back to first grade that I TREASURE! Despite mostly being liked, there have always been a few people that just really actively did not like me. Usually it is a person or two here or there and not a serenity stealer. Everyone is NOT going to like me, they don't HAVE to like me.

However, lately, in one area of my life, I just can't seem to 'fit in'. I am experiencing people STRONGLY disliking me.

MOST of the time, it just feels like my personality is not appreciated. I used to tell myself it was all my perception. However, NOW, for the first time-I am questioning that. I am not thinking it is my perceptions-it is reality. I am actively avoided and dreaded. I can't explain why, but I feel it and it is real. I DO know that if someone has a problem with me and they don't take the steps to resolve it, they are the ones in the wrong.

So what to do? I have no clue. I almost feel like I need to apologize in advance for every word that comes out of my mouth. I feel like I am constantly being judged as a trouble maker/problem child-EVEN when there is a legitimate issue. I have reached a point where if I am going to be labeled and avoided by those who are 'helping' me grow...I'm probably not going to experience any growth.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Weekend Update: Quickly

  • Friday. Up early and off to science co-op. It was fabulous. The non-teaching moms and I enjoyed some fellowship with toddlers and each other while our children learned wonderful sciency things. It is such a good thing that blesses us every week. Then a quick lunch and then the older girls were delivered to their arts and crafts activity. Lilly and I took the opportunity to go to the mall so she could get her free solar freeze.(We heart you dippin' dots.) We even did a little shopping. After we picked up the big girls we shopped a few consignment stores until time for our glorious chiropractor appointment. We still had some time to kill before Dad would be home with famous Turoni's pizza from Evansville, so we stopped by to visit NOAH!! He gave us a few toothy grins and mostly did not cry. He is growing into a very cute toddler. His first birthday is coming up soon...bad news is that we may be on vacation for it, depending on the date.
  • Saturday. It was engineering day at the local college, which the older girls and I attended. (First things first though, we went to a visitation to see our friend whose father passed away.) Lilly was defiant and horrible and got to spend the day away from me instead of attending. She and Dad did all manner of outside work. Her behavior was much improved when we got back from our educational day. Then Erik and I quickly showered and deposited the children off to the grandparents. We had a date night. It was fun, it was lovely. Neither of us could finish our meals because we are eating so much less than we used to. Note to self: Wallaby Darns at Outback are delicious.
  • Sunday. Church and then birthday lunch after church which was awesome. Then Erik and I cleaned. Him-the outdoors, me indoors. I warned the children to make themselves scarce and enjoy the beautiful weather or be assigned many chores. I got the alone time I desperately needed. As Erik and I decided to finish our productive day with a nice walk, we had barely gone far at all before it started sprinkling. We decided to take a closer to home walk. It was full blown rain before we got back. The bottom fell out as soon as we were in the house a few minutes. A timing miracle!!

It was a great weekend and I give full credit to the weather. Spring weather in the middle of winter makes every thing wonderful. The weather today is very cold and GRAY. It is a severe reminder that it is still winter. GRRR!

Thursday, February 18, 2010


I have just been to two different doctor offices. One for my step-father and then myself. Grrr. The waiting is mind numbing at best, infuriating at worst. Waiting at my stepfather's appointment was terrible. The office was packed. The staff was stretched. AND, there were two of those people. You know the ones. Their time is worth more than yours. THEY have somewhere else to be. They threw at least three different hissy fits. When they finally threatened to leave the last time, the staff took them immediately back to a room. The infuriating thing is this-they were a work in and they were seen before us. Now, I can't really blame the staff. It was a woman and her daughter and they were awful. I was actually glad to see them go away to their own private gripe fest. BUT, it is almost like giving in to the fit of a toddler to let them go ahead of us-people with an appointment that had been waiting for almost an hour.

The clencher was this, I was now going to be late for my afternoon DR appt. I had to do some serious praying, tongue biting and loving of my neighbors. When we were finally called back, I politely asked to use the phone (My cell phone was VERY low on battery making a bad situation worse.) and attempted to cancel and reschedule my appointment. No can do, they were at lunch. Grrr. I took a deep breath and trusted God to stretch my time. I just made up my mind not to look at any more clocks, be as quick as possible and forge ahead. I did not want to be like the gripers. In fact, it was kind of a blessing in a way that they were there. The rest of us were very uncomfortable with their behavior. It was sort of a reminder that docs and their staff are people too. Even if they have a bad day, you don't get permission to be rude. This is not typical at that office-believe me, I go there three times a year and seldom wait very long. If we always waited, I would have to decide-Worth the wait? OR Get a new doctor. NOT Chew up the staff and spit them out.

I got Pete back home, picked up my girls and arrived for my appointment 2 minutes late-a time miracle. I think it was my reward for making the decision NOT to be rude. It also reminded me how hard it is to love others sometimes. It reminded me that sometimes my attitude really needs adjusting. But mostly?? It reminded me to NEVER schedule two Dr. appointments on the same day.

The Big Lie

I love this blog!! I love it every day but the focus on Lent really made me laugh. Mostly though, I love his transparency. He is a Christian doing big things. His blog is very famous, he has written a book. He is committed to doing what he feels God has gifted him with-writing and being funny. But the main reason I love him is that he isn't perfect. He doesn't pretend to be. He posts seriously about a problem with porn. He tells exactly what he is doing to combat this THING that continues to be a struggle for him. He admits that it is a struggle. That it is an addiction he WORKS and PRAYS to get over.

See some Christians live what I like to call 'the big lie'.

First, they truly believe you have to be 'good enough' to be truly on a walk with God. They may speak aloud of things like grace and mercy, but they harbor some thoughts deep down that if I were truly submitting my life to Christ-I would not struggle with sin. They truly believe that sanctification begins to look like a perfect life the longer you walk with Christ.

Second, they would die before they would disclose what their personal 'vice' is. You know, we all have something. It is not possible to live in this fallen world without a cross to bear-something that keeps you on your face before God. Something that sneak attacks when you thought you might have moved past it. Sin is sin. Sin separates us from God...UNLESS we admit those sins and stand before him AND others-broken. Then he shines though the cracks and teaches others the gift, redemption right where we are: Flawed, forgiven and probably struggling to keep yourself on track. Eager to share this powerful forgiveness with a hurting world that doesn't know God.

Lastly, they have lost the desire to help people by seeking out those who are lost and broken and share the healing balm of Jesus. Learning to build relationships with people who don't look or act like us. Instead, they prefer to insulate themselves from the world with church bubble wrap. This is not the example of Christ. He really did favor the company of thieves, tax collectors and prostitutes. Why? Nothing makes you feel better than seeing the power of God transform a life. Christ came to heal the broken. We are to be Christ to a fallen world. However, nothing is scarier than putting yourself in the middle of people living in sin. What if they don't choose God? What if I lose myself in the midst of it all? What if people THINK I am losing my way? Better to think: What will God think if I don't share the message of Christ? AND, it is kind of hard to share the message of Christ with people who have already heard it and have given their lives over to it. We can encourage, teach and sharpen each other BUT that isn't our CALLING. Our calling is to share Christ.

I am so lucky to be a part of a church family that doesn't buy into the big lie. This family is always on high alert to help the hurting, wrap their loving arms around them and attempt to set their feet on higher ground. Are we perfect? No- we blow it, forget it, hide it under a bush, forget to love and fail in many ways. HOWEVER, we are a body that is thankful the blood of Christ covers all of our flaws and uses our vapor of existence to grow His kingdom.

Oh, and by church family I don't just mean my church or even (especially?) my denomination. There is a spiritual revolution going on across this world. Christians are finally waking up and getting busy for God-not keeping busy with church.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Wednesdays are not my favorite. It is usually a stay home day, except for Lilly's piano. Then church is off in the distance. Me, struggling to be excited to attend and my girls getting ready for it almost as soon as they get up. Today is not any different except that I did aerobics this morning. I have a love/hate relationship with exercise. I hate it but I am really starting to like the toning it is doing for my body. I have lost alot of inches but the scale still makes me want to pummel it. So much work, so little scale difference. I know in my head it is the whole fat converting to muscle thing and muscle weighs more, yadayadayada...but I want to weigh less NOW!! I am very thankful I decided to go the group exercise route...I'm not sure I could make myself go work out in a gym for an hour alone. This way, I have accountability, especially with so many women from church going there.

I am trying really hard not to be bothered by the fact that my husband received a bunch of valentines from people(women) on Facebook. He says he doesn't know who most of them are. I just have to wonder what kind of women send valentine gifts to other people's husbands?? Oh wait, I know-that is why it bothers me. I am very hopeful that he will pare down his 'friend' list. He really thought the goal of Facebook was to get as many friends as possible. I trust him completely-don't hear me wrong. I just don't like his Facebook very much right now. In a past life, I was a bit of a jealous freak-it was unjustified and annoying. I have mostly let that go...mostly.

I guess I'll go soak in the shower now. It just seems like 1PM is a perfect time to shower. Then we shall finish laundry and school and be very productive. I HATE WINTER. I am fighting not to hibernate every day!! don't get me wrong...I have the same struggle in the hot of summer-not wanting to leave the air conditioning. There is a reason spring and fall are my favorites.

PS. Spellcheck has 'no suggestions' on how to correctly spell 'yadyadayada'. Teehee.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Skinny Tuesday?

Well it is Fat Tuesday and I am feeling thinner-HA! I have made the official decision NOT to give up anything specifically for Lent this year. I have already made so many healthy decisions regarding my weight, health, etc that I just feel like that needs to be my focus-keeping it up. I also will not be overdoing it on Fat Tuesday with anything. My weight is down and it is just to hard to lose it to risk a large Fat Tuesday reward. So no Lent, but no Fat celebration either. (Reggae- no Lent and no Fat)

I have alot of thoughts I could post about, but some of them are best left unwritten. I used to think of my blog as a place I could really vent and debate my troubles away. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. I am pretty sure I have hurt some feelings and caused ire. Totally not worth it, despite what some people think, I do not seek to hurt anyone with my opinions. They are just opinions and we are all entitled to having them-even if they differ. These days, I just prefer to vent to God. He can handle it and still loves me when I am finished.

What are you giving up for Lent? (Hey wait, maybe I am giving up venting on my blog for Lent-sound good??)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Fun Times

"I'm going to cook brats in the crock pot today for supper." Thus says my darling husband.

"UGH...I forgot to clean it(I never do that!) before I left for Lilly's chorus trip. That was Feb. 5th." I mention.

"Why did you do that?" Hubby queries with disgust and disbelief.

"I didn't mean to forget...that is why it's called forgetting!!" (actual retort was not this clever)

"Hey, didn't we buy a new one for your birthday?" Hubby remembers.

"Yes. Yes we did. We can just throw the old one away WITHOUT CLEANING IT." I said happily knowing that we had completely used the old crock pot up. Both handles and the lid were broken. DON'T judge me!!

Hubby then stops at the corner grocery to get the brats. Lilly happily tells my lovely neighbor, Jennifer, that we will be throwing away our crock pot because it is gross and we didn't want to clean it.

Why did we have children again? Oh yeah, to keep us transparent when the blog just isn't enough. Please don't ever prod my child for information, she is as private as her mum.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


  • Since I have started aerobics, lots of people are telling me, "Yeah, I need to do that." Then they ask me for more info, which I give them. As soon as I finish telling them when the classes are, they sigh and tell me they have no time to exercise. I know, I used that one for 14 years. I still don't really have 'time' to exercise. But I will not allow my lack of time to keep me at this ridiculously unhealthy weight anymore. If I were only 10-15 pounds overweight, I'm not sure I would have any time either.
  • My girls have a date with their dad tonight. He will be taking them to the father-daughter dinner at our church. They have lovely new dresses and they are so excited. I think he is too. I am going to help them get ready and then allow them the space to have good quality time together. I told my friend Reigh Anne that I don't even want to be there-I want him to have this time all to himself to really dote on them. AND, it's killing me because I would like to be a fly on the wall.
  • I feel really good right now. It isn't because life is super awesome, cause it never is. I think it is because I am taking time for myself-physically, spiritually and emotionally. In fact, I'd say some of my circumstances are the worst they have ever been, yet I am still better than OK. I am enjoying this feeling because like all feelings, it will pass. Every aspect of life is peaks and valleys. I think that is why I appreciate the peaks so much, I've had enough valleys to know the difference.

That's what is going on in the janjanmom noggin. My plans for today are: aerobics (done), lots of laundry, enjoy-make that SAVOR my time helping the girls get ready for a date with Dad, savor time alone in a quiet house, catch up on Bible study, be proud of myself for still losing weight despite being out of town-eating poorly at times and the OLYMPICS!!

I am now down about 12 pounds since starting my new way of life. Since starting aerobics, 5 pounds. I feel 10 years younger...except for the feeble knees. The knees make me feel rather grandmotherly.

Hee hee, that reminds me of Steph R now, the grandmother part, not the knees. You will be a great GRANDMA, Steph. Congrats and let the teasing begin. ( ;

Thursday, February 11, 2010

We returned today from a whirlwind trip to Evansville. I drove up Monday night in a SNOWSTORM when I realized the activity I had planned for the following day would not be a possibility. We finished up the book fair(Erika and Lilly both won in their age groups. Kayla's was really awesome, but her sister is tough competition.) and got home around 8PM, then we headed out about 9PM for the big town. Snow was really piled up by then and it was the worst driving conditions I have driven in a long time. However, snow driving really isn't bad unless you try to go too fast and I didn't. Mostly, I plugged myself in right behind a semi and tried to stay in it's tracks. There was an amazing amount of traffic. I knew the storm was coming up from the south and the closer I got to Evansville, the better the driving conditions would be. We arrived safe and sound a little before midnight.

We spent the next day sleeping in and chillaxin' (and being disagreeable siblings). However, because the bad weather cancelled his driver training class, Erik took annual leave and got off early. We went off in search of a brain sandwich (Hilltop Inn Restaurant)for hubby to try (two thumbs down-he did not finish his sandwich). After that, we visited the Willard Library. It is a beautiful old building that is reputed to be haunted. Oh my goodness, how could we miss a haunted library in all of our trips?? A really nice librarian gave us some old articles written about the library and we anticipate studying up on it.

After that, we went to the discount theater to see a movie I have been looking forward to seeing-Where the Wild Things Are. What a disappointment. I have never felt so much like asking for my money back after a movie. How they got all of that out of the storybook that I LOVE is a mystery to me. I also thought it was just a horrible movie for kids. My kids agreed. I hate dark, depressing movies that center around kids especially when they make single moms look permissive and neglectful. YUK. We came back to the hotel for swimming and working out.

The next day, we did the whole mall scene. Kayla bought an 'I eat brains' monster t-shirt to pay homage to her father. We also found the girls some cute dresses for the upcoming father-daughter dinner at our church. The girls are looking forward to their big dates with dad. I feel for him, it is really hard to date one woman, let alone three. The mall was a workout in and of itself, but I still worked out and did some swimming. I followed the diet pretty well-so hard to think about healthy choices when on 'vacation'.

When Erik got off work, we went to a Japanese hibachi restaurant-ZUKI. It was so much fun. Watching Lilly watch all that was going on was delightful. Big Fires, juggling, corny jokes and great food. It was very $$$ but really worth it when you factor in the entertainment factor.

Today was very anti-climactic. We visited the main library. We also went to our favorite drugstore, the one we have always killed time at when we had to drop Erik off for work. The lady that worked in the gift shop was so sweet. She is mom to three girls and has always remembered us. We usually found some treasure that we wanted there. Once she even gave Kayla a discount on a necklace that made it cost exactly what Kayla had to spend. We loved the store because we loved her. She no longer works there. Apparently, she followed her dream of becoming a teacher. It wasn't the same. I knew when we walked in and there were such uninteresting things in the gift shop that she wasn't there. A few minutes later, her inferior replacement greeted us. I asked about her and found out about the teacher thing. I know she is an awesome teacher. None of us want to go back to the drugstore again.

Then we went to Goodwill and found a couple of things, ate lunch and drove home. We took a bit of a scenic route home because I somehow missed the WKY parkway. Oh well, I wasn't too worried about it. Just a little less direct path home. It has been nice to be home. I had every intention of starting laundry...I talked myself out of it.

Tomorrow is INTENSE, but it will be fun. A little science, a bit of valentines, BBQ work for the chorus fundraiser and then THE OLYMPICS!!! I can't wait. I love the OLYMPICS.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Thank God, It's MONDAY!!

Thursday, chorus moms meeting. Friday, up at 4:30AM to be at a church parking lot at 5:30AM to accompany Lilly on her chorus trip. I had not seen 4:30AM in a long time. She still looks the same, fresh and unhampered by daylight. I don't plan to see her again for a LONG time. Our bus driver had overslept and our bus ran a bit late. I could have slept another 20 minutes!! That's okay though, I got to sleep on the bus and he did not. Then we made the trip to Louisville where Lilly and the other children in her chorus performed for music teachers. They actually served as a 'teaching prop' for Dr. A as he taught music educators how to develop the singing voices of children. It was a really neat class and based on the tons of people approaching him after the class, I think it was a success.

Then we were back to the hotel for a bit and then off to sup at the Spaghetti Factory. After returning to our room, I did something I have never done before. I worked out in the hotel exercise room. Without shoes because I did not PLAN on working out. It was good though, since I could not make my Saturday aerobics class. I don't want to lose any progress I have made. Still on track. I mostly followed my diet on the trip. I had a few more carbs than usual but it was unavoidable due to the pre-ordered meals. I also walked a ton more than usual so I neither gained or lost.

The only bad part of the trip was the bus ride home...either being scrunched in a seat or just all of the extra steps catching up with me made me almost unable to walk when we returned. BOTH knees and one of my ankles were sore. I unloaded the car and then I propped my feet in the recliner and remained mostly immobile. I did the same the next day as well. I look forward to the day when extra exercise doesn't just do me in. It took me 14 years to get into this poor shape and it will be a long process to get out of it. I just wish I could snap my fingers.

Today is a busy day!! EARLY this morning, Kayla went to the dentist and got her palate spreader taken out. She is so happy to have it gone. It took up most of the roof of her mouth, so eating was really slow going. NEXT. writing class, 4H, and then the BOOK FAIR!!! I am so excited about this event. My kids have all three done a really good job on their dioramas (shadow boxes). I look forward to seeing what all the kids will come up with. I love activities that make reading more fun.

Make the most of this lovely fresh Monday. I think I smell snow...

Thursday, February 04, 2010

To Ponder

I have a question for those of you in the blogosphere. Especially those of you with children, no matter the age.

Why is it that once soap gets soft and squishy, someone is compelled to 'carve' into it?

Just curious.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

My first grade picture. Isn't she lovely. Why didn't someone help me part my hair? It was picture day for goodness sakes!


Wow, golly, gee, this month sure has filled up quickly with lots of stuff. I think we all think the same thing...hmmm, what's a good month to plan something?-Feb, nobody really makes plans for Feb. The next thing you know, there it is, a very full short month.

Adding in aerobics 3 times a week has really been difficult, but totally worth it. I can tell it is helping me to cope with mood swings, hormones and all that other fun girl stuff. I think this month would have me paralyzed if not for the fact that I have a physical outlet.

Last night, at my mothers of daughters Bible study, we talked about self worth. We each had to list three of our best qualities without being critical. Why is it so hard to say something good about yourself without adding a disclaimer. "I'm really good at ____, at least when I have the time to do it well, which I don't, so I guess I am not always..." After we got over the hurdle though, we all listed qualities that I think we see in each other. It is so easy to list good qualities in others. The gist of the study was that if we have such a hard time, how can we expect that our daughters won't struggle with it. I'm really going to be actively looking for ways to boost my daughters abilities to know their strengths and feel good about them. It helps that they aren't being deflated every day in middle school . Although, I am sure I have my deflationary moments with them. (Did I make that word up? )

Well I am off to finish planning a wonderful PATCH meeting for tonight. (I hope.) (Oop, there it is, disclaimer.)

Monday, February 01, 2010

The Road to Fitness

Here is a quick update on how things are going for me. It has been a bad week as far as eating goes. Not terrible and compared to old Janjanmom eating-stellar. But I have not been hitting all the food groups like I am supposed to. Often this is because I am full and it makes no sense to me to eat 'a little more' when I am full. Also, wedding cake-it was awesome. This was a planned splurge, but really not the best choice. AND THEN, last night it was all I could do not to stop and get a candy bar while I was out. Or an apple pie, or a sundae, or a Frosty. I made it home by the power of God and ate 6 chocolate chips. It was enough to calm the savage beast.

This week, I will hit all the food groups because I am not a strong woman when it comes to willpower. I can't fight cravings like that every day. Better to just do what it takes to keep them at bay...a few more fruits and veggies.

On the exercising front, all is well. I could not exercise Saturday, so I added Thursday. I will pay for that today and tomorrow but 3 times a week is a commitment for me. AND, I can see a TINY bit of definition in my arms. WOO HOO! There is still lots of flab too, but the muscles are there and they are making a place for themselves.

Small victories are what's keeping me going!