Wednesday, February 23, 2011

There is a dark side.

I initially started this blog because I don't scrapbook and yet I wanted to keep the memories we are creating as a family. My posts are usually positive & light-hearted. But there's an entirely different side of memories that I don't blog about. Frankly, I'm ashamed because they are dark and who wants to relive the darkness.

I am a mother. More specifically, Monday through Friday I spend 11 nonstop waking hours parenting two toddlers all on my own. And during the course of that 11-hour day, I screw up royally and often.

And though the screw-ups sometimes outweigh the parenting successes, I don't blog about them.

I didn't blog about the times I screamed so loudly at my kids that I'm certain my neighbors heard me.

Or the time I chucked the kids' beloved truck out the back door because I could no longer tolerate the fighting.

Or the time I cupped my son's face so tightly that I couldn't stop staring at his cheeks for fear I had left a mark.

Or the time I let my daughter throw her body on the floor, wailing because I wouldn't pick her up, because I was too flustered in my attempt to make dinner.

Or the times I pushed my kids away as they crawled into my lap to read a book because I was too engrossed in an email or worse yet, facebook.

Or the times I have physically walked out the front door because I was certain that if I heard one more child cry, I would surely lose it.

If it sucks for you to read my failures, trust me, it really sucks for me to type them. Sucks. Sucks. Sucks.

Just yesterday I pulled my kids into my lap and apologized profusely for losing my temper. Sweet Henry looked at me and said, "Temper? It's lost? Is it on your back? Where did it go, mommy?" I nearly cried at his innocence and yet I wanted so badly for him to understand that I was sorry.

He'll get it eventually. It certainly won't be the last apology he hears from me.

And fortunately for me, I have Jesus.

Seriously, truly, I don't know how to do this job without Jesus. Every minute of everyday I get to start fresh. Last night, after a rough day, I went for a jog (Thank you, Matt, for allowing me that time. You are such a gift to me.) As the sun went down, in 20 degrees along ice-covered sidewalks, I was overwhelmed with emotions knowing that my God will restore all the crap that I create as a mother. He adores my kids even more than I do (how is that even possible?) and when I screw up and act like a lunatic, the Lord fills my home with grace and mercy, blessing each of us amidst the mess of our lives.

I am so far from a perfect mother. And yet God knows that I am the best mother for Henry and Harper. And so when I fail and fail and fail, God forgives me and renews my soul so that I can turn around and show my children love even when I would rather crawl into a hole covered in shame.

Henry & Harper, there are not enough words to tell you how much you two mean to me, and there will never be enough I'm sorry's to make up for all the mistakes I made, am making, and will make.

And thank you Jesus. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Thank you.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sledding: the only thing I'll miss about winter.

And even that is a stretch. Especially considering my fanny never touched a sled this winter. Or last winter. Or the one before that.

Look, I used to enjoy winter in Ohio. As a kid, it was pretty awesome. When I grew up, they'd call a snow day over a few funny lookin' flurries, and make-up days were a joke. It made skipping school a lot easier when school was already canceled.

But now that I'm a stay-at-home-mom, I despise winter in Ohio. Sure, it can be beautiful (for one week in early January before the state is covered in poop-colored sludge). But a week after the new year, right about when the holiday hangover sets in, it gets brutal. B-R-U-T-A-L. Imagine being under house arrest (minus the awesome ankle bracelet) while your 2 year old stuffs matchbox cars into your boots (causing a painful surprise when it's time to shovel and you fumble into your boots for the fifteenth time that day) and your 18 month old eats salt from the floor of your foyer.

And that last for 3 months.

That's 12 weeks.

Or 84 days.

Or 2,016 hours.

Or 120,960 seconds.

You get the point.

It's brutal.

And though we made the most of this winter (God bless COSI and the library), I have never ever been more ready for Spring.

But this post was supposed to be about sledding. And though I wasn't even there to watch my minis sled happily down the hill at Grandma & Grandpa's house, these pictures help me to realize that I might miss winter after all.

Actually, that's not true. I'm pretty sure winter can kiss it and never come back. Sorry, kids.




























And in case you are thinking, "but Christmas is great, and that happens in winter." You're wrong. At best, Christmas is late Fall around here. And I'm not in the mood to see the bright side. So don't start with me.

*My in-laws are saint-like human beings who enjoy wearing a ridiculous number of layers so that they can spend 10 picture-perfect minutes outside in the stupid cold in an effort to create happy memories with my children. They will surely receive a multitude of blessings when they meet the good Lord. As will my husband. He obliged to my request to "take lots of pictures - I don't want to miss out on their first sled of the season." He's a good man who enables my grinch-like behavior.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Another year.

I started blogging at Blessed Treehouse TWO years ago today.

The funny thing is that it feels like I've always been blogging. It is such a natural fit for me.

Here is the post I wrote last year to acknowledge my one year bloggy anniversary.


Though my blogging rhythm has slowed down a bit, I still very much enjoy it. And I'm thankful that y'all stop by periodically to remind me how much I love love love my online community of peeps.

Cheers to another blessed year!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Knitastic

Sometime last year (or was it the year before?) I got this crazy whack idea. I decided to learn to knit. And because my momma is a knittin' fool, I asked her to teach me. It didn't take but a few minutes for me to catch on.

And then I went home and settled into the knitters position (cozy afghan, cinnamon candle, classical music) and took out my needles. And then nothing.

N-O-T-H-I-N-G.

And that's when I realized this knittin' thang is a heck of a lot harder than it looks.

So I gave up.

Because never ever ever would I be anywhere near as knitastic as my AMAZING momma. That girl can knit!

And that's also when I realized that the dozens and dozens of gifts she has knitted for me and my hubs and my kids are so much greater than simply gifts. They are brilliant and complicated works of art.

Here's just a sampling of her talent:

Leg Warmers (could you not die?!)


Toys (genius!)


Cozy sweaters (PRESH.)



Ponchos! (my personal fave.)


Hats & mittens galore. (beyond cute.)




Mom,

You have a gift. Thank you for ALL of the beautiful items you have knitted together with love.

You are the best.