Monday, January 6, 2014

Let's DO THIS!

     Bring on Monday! Let's get this year started.  I'm ready to dig in and move forward.  This weekend I spent time cleaning my room and thinking.  I had a lot of cleaning to do. It is actually embarrassing how much and that it's not even done.  I love my little work space though.  My desk is tidy.  Papers are organized. Ok, so I do have one massive pile yet to sort. But I have the files labeled to do it!!

     Tomorrow my oldest has her first seriously major assignment due.  It's worth 30% of her grade.  She hasn't even asked me to look at it.  I think I make her feel like she's not good enough. So tomorrow I'm going to offer to proof it if she wants but no matter what she answers I will be reminding her that I think she's amazing!!! She is so courageous.  She dove into taking two online high school classes and has tackled it with grace.  Except at about 1:30 this afternoon when she thought she had lost all her work from the weekend, then there were tears, but still just a little bit. Her amazing daddy came to the rescue and found where she had saved it.  Then there were more tears because it was saved!!

      I anticipate a battle with #3.  I may start calling her the Noisy Noodle.  Nah, that's not very nice.  Several hours of my time this weekend were also spent researching options for how to change her learning.  I haven't come to any satisfying conclusions. Money is a pain, or rather the lack there of is.  Tomorrow she will be back on and Kahn Academy as well as the SOS Science & Geography we were given. Bless that family, Lord!!  The Principal will be out of the building. Hopefully the day will go well anyway.

      Daughter #2 has been ready to learn and I am hoping her compliance and even eagerness will continue.  She will be reviewing basic multiplication on too just because she needs it.  But the time has come for her to move on, so Kahn Academy will be in play for her as well.  Time to tackle what she has passively resisted for over a year.  Here we come long division, decimals, fractions and percentages.  This might get ugly. Hopefully it won't.  I have resources. Now to use them.  She has happily immersed herself in the Sonlight reading and I anticipate that will go well.  The answering the questions and writing may be a hiccup we have to overcome.  We can do it though, I know we can!!

     And back to Daughter #1, well, Science & Math have lost priority a bit over the Fall Semester but it's time to put those back into play.  She and I will be learning time management skills together.  Her paper route, volunteering, church volunteering, free time, and youth events all need squished in there.  Can we do this?  Yes, but it's going to take work to figure out how.

     Then there is Baby Girl.  The schedule is working PRAISE GOD!!!  Sleep is happening for all of us! She is a much happier baby for sleeping longer and more.  She has much happier parents too.  Yippee!! Now the trick will be to keep her schedule working while life happens.  Teens and toddlers are an interesting mix.  Tim and I rarely have time when we are awake and someone else isn't too.  Next on our agenda is working Daughter #3 back into sleeping in their shared room.  I sure wish we had enough rooms for them to not need to share. I am thankful though for the pull out couch in the basement and that we have that space for her to use in the meantime.

     The latest work schedule at my part time job has me booked for a few more hours and there are some daytime shifts in there.  I am thankful for how God is providing for us.  Tim and I are still praying, thinking, and researching about the future.  It blows my mind how much things cost. In some ways I just don't fully understand it. $400,000 is more money than my brain can fathom when it comes to property prices and yet that's where the ones that have what we need start, start.  YIKES good thing God is a big God!! Too bad we can't ask Him to invest cold hard cash. Can you imagine the bankers face if we listed God as a partner??? That thought makes me smile.

     Speaking of smiles, my Thirty-One business has so much potential for this coming year. I get excited thinking about it!  Over the next few months I can work towards earning this summer's conference almost FREE if not completely free.  And if things continue to go as they are I may even see Director after my name!! Wouldn't that be cool?  It's so much fun having a team of people in this with me.  I've met some amazing people through this opportunity already.  It really is my favorite thing to go on my Downline Tracker and watch them reach goals and earn rewards!  There are whispers about a leadership trip happening this fall for Canadian consultants.  The mere thought of a vacation and a paid for vacation at that???  *Swoon!*

     The girls are wanting music lessons and Thirty-One is about the only way I can see that happening.  It's over $200 a month!! I need to have some parties!! LOL    We work this business as a family and I am really hoping and praying God will continue to bless it and us.  We have also taken on an extra paper route to put towards this cost.  It's crazy to think about adding that expense and yet I feel so strongly about it needing to happen now.  I will keep praying about it and Tim and I will keep talking.  We haven't made any final decisions  yet as it really isn't in our budget.  The decision needs to be made very shortly as lessons begin again this week.

     That's about all for now.  It's officially Monday and I'm ready to head to bed.  We have a meeting to attend at 9 a.m. tomorrow morning for Tim.  I just loooooove mornings. *insert rolling eyes here*

     Thanks for reading!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

The First Day of A New Year

It's here. The new year full of potential. There are some things I feel that I don't even want to write out or say out loud. I figure God knows my heart and Satan can't read minds so if I keep quiet then it can't be used against me.  Maybe?

There are some things that I am hoping to work on this year. Not resolutions so much as life changes that have been in the works for awhile.  Some, like moving towards more whole foods and less packaged and processed foods for our family, have been a goal for awhile.  Others, like trying an elimination diet to find out what exactly is causing the hives I keep getting? are ones I've put off as long as I could and ignored until the time is just right. Well, there's a couple turkeys in the freezer (turkey isn't high on the allergy list did you know that?) and the baby is a toddler who is all done nursing. That makes this the time.

Homeschooling. Well, it's 9 years in and I'm tired.  I'll just say that.  I'm going to have tea with a dear friend and talk some.  It hasn't gotten easier.  The girls desire, and mine too, for music lessons hasn't happened and I'm about to do my best to make it happen this year, Lord willing.

I'll be working at my part time job as often as they'll schedule me. Having even partial benefits for our family through that job has been a blessing.  My co-workers are great and the work environment is good.  My direct sales business I will work as much as God opens doors.  I seriously love it.  Thirty-One Gifts is so much fun and I've enjoyed each of my hosts and their parties where I get a chance to meet their friends, co-workers and neighbors.  We thought Thirty-One was for our planned trip to Florida for Christmas but God knew better.  Florida didn't happen and the income instead paid bills. The girls have been amazing about that despite the major disappointment of yet another fun trip canceled.

 Tim is laid off for the next three months at least and the future isn't certain. It's even more uncertain than usual.  He has dreams and I'd sure like to work beside him to make those happen.  In the mean time we have been blessed by so many in big and small ways.  God is providing.  Through words of encouragement, listening ears, surprise gift baskets or even gift certificates we have been blessed and encouraged.  So while there is definitely stress there is also a drawing near to Jehovah Jireh.

This clinging to hope and trusting? It's hard.  Some days I just want to climb back into bed and under the covers until. . .well, until summer at least.  Hard things keep coming.  Isn't that the truth?  You stand up from one and another wave just may knock you down.  Attitude and faith are the only things we can really control. And controlling faith isn't even really the right way to say it. Hanging on to it and sometimes, sometimes maybe it's not me hanging on so much as me being held onto.  I said that out loud to Tim. Said that I couldn't take any more, that I'm not even hanging on. Then just like that more came and  I am still here.  So maybe it's not me hanging on at all.  Maybe it's God holding me close.  He must get so tired of my whining about the rain on my face when He is bearing the brunt of the storm.

Over the last several years God has impressed on my heart a theme, a challenge, in the form of a phrase or word usually backed up with scriptures.  As December days passed and nothing had been put on my heart I didn't think I'd have one for this year.  Then a word, a desire, came to my heart and I knew.  Hope.  That is my wish, my prayer for 2014, it dawned on me that it is also my word for the year.  It followed in the Bible reading I read (later than I was supposed to in the plan!) with this verse that I've since written on the chalkboard in our dining room.  The word "hope" isn't in it, but fear and a troubled heart are definitely issues directly connected to losing hope.  Fear strangles hope.  Already I have read and repeated it multiple times.

John 14:27  Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.