A Wife Loved Like The Church

Posts Tagged ‘Random thoughts from my brain

Growing up I can’t recall one time I got in trouble for not cleaning my room. I do remember getting in trouble for rearranging it at 10 p.m.

My older brother would pay me $5 a week to clean his room. Let me tell you, I was sorely under paid . I can say with great certainty, my brother’s room had a lingering smell of dirty socks, mildew and spoiled food every time I cleaned. But I loved cleaning, and getting paid, and so I did it. Plus, during this stage of his life, my brother’s saving account was wadded up $20s thrown about randomly in his room. If I happened upon one (or two, or three) I helped myself to a tip. 😉

In college, I lived with two extremely messy not-so-neat roommates. Thankfully, I did not live with them at the same time, otherwise I’m sure neither of them would talk to me today because I would have been so mad all the time. Well, actually, only one of them still talks to me…. Perhaps the other one couldn’t stand that I would start putting her clothes away, rearranging her side of the dorm room, or organizing all her bathroom stuff. Without asking.

Once I got married, I think most of Jonathan and my first “fights” were about the state of our condo. Jonathan left me with the impression that he was a neat freak when we were dating. Any messes I did encounter, I promptly blamed on his roommates. Aww, love really is blind. But, after the honeymoon was over, I had the horror of discovering that Jonathan isn’t a neat freak. He’s one of those balanced people. You know the ones; they can live in complete order or complete chaos and still manage to function. I am not one of those people.

Then, in November 2007, total chaos came into my life in the form of my sweet (although some times trying) Julia. Quickly I started realizing that children produce more mess than any other roommate I’ve ever known including my amazing husband. And it drives me a little bonkers. I like order, I like clean, I like perfection. Chaos throws me into a weird funk, that results in a bad mood, lack of concentration and a feeling of helplessness.

Yet, slowly I’ve come to terms with chaos. While I don’t do my best with total dysfunction, I’m at a point where I don’t curl up in a corner crying because the bed hasn’t been made in two weeks days. I’d like to say, I’ve even gotten to the point that my kitchen can look like this:

And my living room like this:

And still I manage to survive. And even smile. Sorta.

I mentioned a while back about Jon Acuff over at Stuff Christians Like. He recently released a book, aptly named Stuff Christians Like. I’ll admit, I haven’t purchased it yet. Not to say that I don’t want to, I fully plan on it, once my life is a tad less chaotic. Well, I guess I shouldn’t say less chaotic, that might be never, so when my life is not sporadically neatly lived out of boxes.

At any rate, I think you should really check him out. He just gave everyone a glimpse of his first page. I thought I’d be nice and pass it along.

This past Tuesday we signed on our new house. And here it is:

Here’s the kitchen:

We are having everything painted this weekend and we’re still moving things in, so once the house is settled (or should I say, once the house is not in total choas, just minor chaos) I’ll post more pictures of all the rooms. Maybe you can consider this your teaser. 😉

Our family makes a regular practice of having daily quiet time for the girls. I have them both sit on blankets with toys and books (or coloring books and crayons for Julia) for about 30 minutes. Over the last several months I feel like I’ve hit a quiet time rut. It seems like we are always giving Julia the same books or the same toys and her interest is fading fast. I read a great idea nearly a year ago on Keeper of the Home about having quiet time bins. The idea is to have bins for each day of the week, containing something new for each of the days. The child only plays with those items/toys on that day. I’ve been wanting to put this into practice since first learning about it, but haven’t wanted to splurge on nice bins. That is until now.

Paul’s Discount is a local store in town. They just had their “Dollar Days” and guess what? Shoebox sized bins were on sale for $1. Sweet! I bought five and here’s what I made:

I am still working on filling them with great things I know Julia will enjoy each day. She’s thrilled about her “boxes” and was more than excited when she got to open it for quiet time yesterday.

Just to add some cheesiness… I have these little 16 oz containers inside each bin for Hannah. The containers hold one or two small books each. I did this 1) because I thought it was kinda adorable 2) to help Julia later understand that the contents of the bins are to be shared with her sister. When Julia did her quiet time, I pulled out the small containers for Hannah. Not surprising, Hannah liked the box more than the books or other toys she had!

Want to hear something even crazier? I’m really glad.

Ok, I’ll give you a moment to compose yourself.

Better now?

The first time I toured the house, I didn’t notice the lack of dishwasher. But sure enough, it’s not there. The kitchen is a galley design, meaning it’s long and narrow. The house was built in 1959, and while other parts of the house are very up-to-date, the kitchen is not. The kitchen is something Jonathan and I discussed a lot before putting in an offer: could we live with it as-is?

Yes. And I love it.

We’re a family that hosts. A lot. In fact, I’m fairly certain Hispanic and hosting are spelled the same. So, why would I love “wasting” time in the kitchen? Because, and this is where things get crazy, it’s simple.

I didn’t have a dishwasher until my family built our house when I was 17. Actually, I take that back, my family did have a dish washer: me. And while at the time, washing dishes for my entire family was by no means fun, it was usually the only part of my day that was just to myself. I’ve been telling Jonathan lately, that in all the chaos, all the facebooking, blogging, playdating, 1/2 marathon training, news-updating world that has become my life, I’m really longing for something that takes it back a few steps. And hand washing dishes is one of those.

We do plan to remodel at some point. Since hosting is a big part of our lives and the kitchen is the natural place where we gather, we would like to make it more inviting for our “extended familia”. But, the ideas we have are going to take time to see through. Which means, in the mean time, I’m going old school.

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How in the world do you use yeast?

If there is one thing in the cooking world that mystifies me, it is using yeast for baking. I have only used it in my bread machine and have never ventured beyond that. I’m even apprehensive about the terms; testing the yeast, “it’s live” or “it’s active”, then there’s fresh yeast, dry active, or instant. Your water has to be just right, the room temperature just so… one wrong move makes everything go sour. It’s like everything has to be aligned perfectly for these little microorganisms to work.

What are some tricks, tips, help “bewares” that you can pass along?

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In January, my friend, Leah, set a goal to loose 10 pounds by her birthday. Now, my friend, Laryssa at Heaven in the Home, along with Mary at Giving up Perfect, are doing a 10 week weight loss competition.

And I’m signing up.

After Hannah was born, I was determined to get back in shape. I was tired of feeling overweight, sluggish and unhealthy.  So, at my 6 week postpartum mark, I started running. 4 weeks later, I started two workout classes at Performance Fitness and did running on Saturdays. I was feeling pretty good and loosing weight. But, I feel like I’m hitting a rut. I’m feeling “fluffy” and a little a lot restless.

Here are my challenges/goals:

– complete the half marathon training on April 24th

– stick with my daily/weekly points (Weigh Watchers)

– incorporate more yoga/stretching into my weekly workouts

– actively work on getting ripped (or not so “fluffy) abs

– lose 8 pounds and reach my “ultimate goal” weight

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