Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Jacob's Failed Test

As we were leaving school this afternoon, Jacob told me he failed a test. Failed in 3rd grade is to get a "3" on your test. You want a "1". When we got in the van, we went over the test questions and Jacob got every one right (when I asked him, but not on the test). In fact, there was even one question that he got right on the test but when it came time to enter it on the "bubble sheet" he was in such a hurry that he copied the wrong answer down (I cannot condone this, but I can understand it because as an elementary student myself I was always in a hurry to be the first one done. The thing is....I usually got the answers right when I hurried, wrong when I went slow). So back into the school we went. I wanted to ask his teacher for more homework on graphs. So we got the additional work and headed home. Obviously, I told Jacob I was disappointed because I knew he could do it and he just didn't. After I said all that, I thought about it. I thought it would have been better if I just asked him if he really did his best, and if he said he did then.....well you did your best. So, despite the fact that I already told him I was disappointed, I decided to ask him if he thought he did his best. I was shocked to hear him respond "No, I didn't". So we had another discussion on how bad that really was. I knew he could do better. He knew he could do better. And yet, he did not do well at all. I think that conversation resonated the most with him. For whatever reason, he seemed to understand. Thank you Lord for giving me the idea to ask him. Sometimes the right thing comes at the wrong time. With me, it happens more than it should. Jacob will be spending the next couple of afternoons studying graphs instead of shooting hoops. Bummer for him.

Locked Out

This morning I was getting ready to go with my friend to Costco and I stepped out into the garage to get my shoes and Grant slammed and LOCKED the door behind me. He locked it with the dead bolt. The first thing I did was pray. Then I was trying to get him to unlock it, but as I kept saying "unlock it", he kept locking and un-locking the lock on the handle. Try telling a 2 year old to turn the "thingy" on the handle to the up and down position. He doesn't know what a "thingy" is, or what a handle is or even what up and down are. Come on. At the moment I was going to lose my mind, my friend pulled into the driveway. Not a moment too soon. I am much better in stressful situations when there is another person there with me. She came to the door and was sweetly telling Grant if he unlocked the door we would buy him some candy. What?!? I was thinking about how I could break the door down. Thinking about going to either of my neighbor's houses, who are police, and trying to explain to them that my 2 year old was locked in the house alone. Oh cell phone was also in the house with Grant. Finally, it dawned on me to go to the back sliding glass door, where Grant could at least see me. I got to the back door and banged on the glass, calling his name, and Grant turned from the garage door and started to run towards my bedroom. NOOOOOOO!!! Come back...I banged even louder. Finally, he came over to the door, where I coached him on opening it. Thankfully, he could see me to see exactly what I was talking about. I was in. But I was so shaken. It took almost an hour for me to calm down. Grandma asked if Grant got spanked. I said no, if I would have spanked him I probably would have killed him I was so worked up. It was just best for me to hold him and praise the Lord that I was able to get in without any incident.

An Enlightening Morning

This has certainly been an enlightening morning. As I have continued to sit here and pray and read my Bible, God has revealed more to me. I have been slightly consumed lately with our living situation. To buy or not, to continue to rent or not, to move or not....all these have been plaguing me. As I prayed and looked at my surroundings, I was reminded of how AT THE PERFECT MOMENT, God provided our house in Illinois. Then again, AT THE PERFECT MOMENT, God provided this house. Why in the world do I waste a single second even thinking about this? God's provision is more than enough. I think part of where I struggle is in knowing what is mine to do and what is God's. I don't think I am supposed to sit and do nothing, but I also know that I am not to do everything - I couldn't even if I tried. what? I am not entirely sure. But what I do know, that I will do. I will continue to pray over this situation. I will continue to TRUST IN THE LORD with ALL my heart. Beyond that is up to God. I am OK with that. I love how He reminded me that He has provided....I do not have to worry. I am so in love with my God!

Confessions of a Sugar Addict

So....I gave up sugar for the month of March. Not because of Lent, like everyone else, but because I was feeling sluggish and tired and wanted to see if getting rid of "junk" would help. And it did. But.....last night (the night of March 29 - only 2 days before the end of the month) I decided to have cake and ice cream....right before bed. Bad choice. Very bad. Thankfully, it did not hinder my sleep, that is, until this morning. I woke from a terrible dream about Greg's job, wherein his boss had rigged Jadyn's braided hair with a camera to tape everything I did. Then Greg was being punished for that. Horrible. The interesting part was because I could not go back to sleep I came out to read my Bible and ODB. The Scripture comes from 1 Samuel 12:19-25, and talks about how the people of Israel wanted and demanded a king despite Samuel's warnings. God allowed them to have their way and once they realized the error of that way, they pleaded with Samuel to pray for them. '"Do not be afraid," Samuel replied. "You have done all this evil; yet do not turn away from the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart." (vs 20) Those words belonging to Samuel and directed to the people of Israel long ago, were used specifically this morning to minister to my heart. I sinned......not really against God because my vow of sugar was not a vow to God (although I think I treated it that way), but in my heart I felt it was. I was upset at my lack of control, ashamed that only 2 days before the end I blew it, had a bad dream and a terrible headache. But Samuel continues and tells the people of Israel words that God used to mend my broken heart. "But be sure to fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you." (vs 24) And, oh......what great things He HAS done for me!!!!! I am blessed beyond measure, completely undeserving and utterly grateful. My Heavenly Father loves me and I know it. He gently tended to me this morning...slight rebuke, lots of forgiveness and amazing encouragement. Who wouldn't want to live this way? Loved, tended, fixed, forgiven. That my friends is the REAL confession of this addict. My LORD and Savior is ALL I NEED. He is EVERYTHING! Praise You Jesus!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Grace and the Sabbath Tooth

Grace has had a loose tooth for quite a while. This morning, at church, it finally came out. She bit down on her gum and then her mouth was all bloody. So we ran to the bathroom and I attempted to pull it out. When it didn't come, Grace just pushed on it with her tongue and out it came! She did tell me I was amazing - my pulling it out skills. I had to laugh.

Just now, she asked me to give her the tooth, so she could put it in a baggie. All of a sudden she came in with a troubled look on her face. She said, "Today is the Sabbath. You don't work on the Sabbath." Translation: Is the tooth fairy going to come tonight? Does she work on the Sabbath?

Man, I love that girl. I love that she has a working knowledge of the Bible. She just makes me smile.

Sweet Jacob

I love our new church! I think it is changing Jacob. Actually, I think God is changing Jacob. And I love that even more! This morning after church, there were cookies and coffee cake. My sweet son, Jacob, brought me a piece of coffee cake. Now I wanted it badly, but I am off sugar until the end of March, so I could not eat it. I was so grateful that he thought of me. The other thing about church was that when the kids come back in after children's church, Jacob bee-lines right for me and stands in front of me, letting me wrap my arms around him and hug him. He even lets me kiss the top of his head. It is not very often that he lets me do that, so I cherish every opportunity.

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Death in the Family

Last night (or early this morning) our betta fish, Sushi, died. We have had many false alarms with him over the past months. He stopped eating about a month ago and has been extremely lethargic. The kids, and especially Grace, have been sad each time. Grace has been borderline hysterical a couple of times. Well, since she has been very sick, we were thinking about waiting to tell her, but Greg decided to take the fish bowl out of my room while Grace was laying in the bed. She asked him what he was doing and he told her he was cleaning the bowl. Since he didn't tell the whole truth, I decided we should just tell her. I came and lied on the bed with her and told her we had a death in the family. She said, "Sushi?" I told her yes. She said (and I quote), "Well, that happens." Very matter-of-fact. Then she asked where he was. I told her he was in a bag in the garage and when she felt better we would bury him in the backyard. She looked at Greg and I and said, "No.....we need to wait and bury him when we get our own house." I love the thought process of that girl.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Dinner at Chez Pawlak

I asked Jacob and Grace what they wanted for dinner and a fight broke out. I told them to forget it and I just picked. Jacob did not like it and stomped off, but then returned a few minutes later saying it would be OK, if he got to make dinner. That prompted Grace to want to cook too. With Jadyn being sick and wanting me to hold her, this was more than ideal for me. So they started with washing and dicing peppers. Then Grace made an alfredo sauce (from a jar), doctored up with chicken, bacon, peppers and garlic, and also made the salad. Jacob made the linguine, set the table (complete with candles) and made the menu. The plan was when Greg got home, Grace would show him the menu, let him pick his dinner (we also had a red sauce for those who did not care for white sauce or peppers), and then Jacob would be the "waitress". I had to explain to him that a waitress was a girl and a waiter was a boy. He quickly changed his title to waiter. They also did the dishes and helped me make Amish Cinnamon Bread. They were very busy beavers and did an amazing job! It was neat to watch them work, and to see how they are, in fact, growing up. Shhhhhhhh! Don't say that.

Strawberry Vomit

It was 3:15, I had just woke Jadyn up to get ready to go to school and pick the kids up. I had Jadyn in my bathroom and we were brushing her hair, when all of a sudden she started throwing up. She was standing by one of the sinks and if I had half a brain I would have just left her there to finish. But NOOOOOOOO! I picked her up from behind, whirled around 180 degrees to get her to the toilet. In the process, I managed to cover the entire bathroom with pretty red vomit. Thankfully, and I mean this with all my heart, she had eaten strawberries at lunch and they perfumed the throw up smell quite nicely. So now it is 3:30 and I have to leave to get the kids. Oh yeah.....during this whole thing, I was on the phone on hold with the Secretary of State. At some point they either randomly hung up on me, or heard what was going on when I did not answer them and finally hung up. I undressed Jadyn and got her in the shower. Before I started clean up I needed to call the school and have them let Jacob and Grace know I would be late picking them up. I still had to clean the bathroom, get Jadyn dried and dressed, and wake Grant up. Surprisingly, I was only 5 minutes late getting the kids.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Very Busy Day

Today was a busy day. First of all, we lost an hour of sleep. That would be enough, wouldn't it? But there's more. We got up and got ready for church, and by we, I mean, I got myself and 4 others ready. Then we went to church, where Greg and I were greeters. I am not entirely sure how he felt about it, but I loved it! I loved getting to see people's faces, warm their cold hands with a handshake, and welcome them to the Lord's house. After church, we raced home and threw down some pizza and salad. As we were finishing lunch, Tom arrived. I made him a salad and got him some lunch. We visited for about 10 minutes, before he gave me instructions on selling his van - BTW....anybody want to buy an impeccably clean Honda Odyssey? Then Greg had to run Tom to the airport, while we finished the naps here. Unfortunately, the naps had to be cut short because we had to leave for Jacob's basketball tournament. Carolyn and Al met us at the church to watch Jacob's game, which they overtime, thanks to one real bad decision on the coach's part. But hey, it is not about winning, right? Yeah, right. You believe that and I have some oceanfront property to sell you. Anyway, I know it is young ball and they are all learning, but come on, they are boys and they want to win. They need a coach to make some good decisions for them come crunch time. Oh well. Maybe next year. But no more female coaches, that is all I am going to say. After the game I traded with Greg and he took 3 kids home, while I took Grace to Costco for a return then to her Brownies rollerskating party. After 2 hours at Rollerama, I was ready to be home. As soon as I got home, I finished making the dinners I am delivering tomorrow. I have just finished putting the kids to bed and now I sit. With Greg telling me to go to a different room because he wants to sit in the dark. I guess I will just go to bed them. On to the GREAT Lord willing.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Secret Keeper Girl Day

Today Grace and I are going to the Secret Keeper Girl Pajama Party. We are both so excited!!! This is a conference that teaches girls about being pure and modest, while still being cute and fashionable. And (most importantly) it is designed to draw girls and their moms closer together. Gonna be a good time.

Friday, March 11, 2011


Jacob is home sick today. In his class, they have just finished reading the book "Sarah Plain and Tall". Today they are watching the movie and doing a writing comparison between the book and the movie. I called the library and they had the movie, so Jacob and I are watching the movie this afternoon, while Jadyn and Grant sleep. I emailed his teacher asking for the instructions and included in her email she said she thought I was a wonderful mother. I said to Jacob, "Your teacher thinks I am a wonderful mother." He replied, "Yeah, kinda are." Just warms my heart.

Where's the button?

Yesterday, the dishwasher broke. So, I bought I dish drying rack. As I was doing dishes last night and putting them in the dryer, Grace asked me what that was (the rack). I told her is was a dish dryer. She looked at it and then asked me, "Where's the button to turn it on?" I looked at her in absolute amazement, then laughed hysterically. How would she know? She's never seen one before - oh wait - yes in Oscoda. But then she has never done dishes with me there. It is amazing to see (yet again) the things we take for granted. By we, I mean me. Apparently, these are signs of the times. My child does not even know that dishes CAN be washed by hand.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Magic Carpet Theater

Tonight we went to see the Magic Carpet Theater at the Hartland Music Hall. This was 3 women that made 4 books come to life, through reading them and acting them out using only a scarf, a jacket and 2 hats. It was amazing. All 6 of us were supposed to go, but Grant was complaining that his stomach hurt, so he and Greg stayed home. We arrived there early enough (too early, in fact) to get front row seats. Jacob, Grace and Jadyn were absolutely enthralled with this. I was not sure how they were going to react to it, but it was fun to watch them. When the ladies acted out the book "Love You Forever", both Grace and I were crying, but not before all 4 of us were laughing hysterically at the lady who played the part of the son. What was neat about that was as I was listening to the story, I was picturing my very own life. My rambunctious 2 year old, then my strangely weird 9 year old, then thinking towards the future...when all of a sudden Jacob leaned into me and let me put my arm around his shoulder....for the rest of the story. What a treasure for me! The 3rd story was "Horton Hears a Who", and they asked for a volunteer to help them. Fast as lightning, Jacob's hand shot up and I about fell out of my seat. Jacob NEVER volunteers to be in front of people. Wow. I was seeing history in the making. And what another treasure - seeing my son come out of his shell. The last book was about rain in the plain of Africa (can't remember the name), but because it is done in rhyme, the ladies sort of did it "rap" style. Jacob was smiling ear to ear and clapping right along. You might think that I am talking only about Jacob. Well, he was the one sitting next to me, but I kept watching the girls. Smiling, extremely attentive, very lady-like in the theater, and really enjoying themselves. I am so thankful that I was able to experience this with my kiddos. I am grateful that we have an amazing library that puts adventures like this on. At the end, the ladies invited all the kids to come onstage and they all had a group picture taken. I imagine that will be in the library (or their paper) somewhere. I'll be looking for it. As we were walking out, Jacob said, "That was not really good. IT WAS AMAZING!" To hear that....well, I cannot even begin to express what I am feeling.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Spoiled Boys

On the heels of that last post..... I was just putting the kids to bed, and in an attempt to speed up the process I sang to my boys collectively. Let me clarify. Every night I sing a song I made up to my kids. Each night I sing separately to the boys and I sing to the girls together. Well, when I sang to the boys together, well....that went over like a fart in church. Jacob quickly told me that he cannot go to sleep without me singing to him alone (and I love that!) So after I sang to Jacob, I went to kiss Grant and he said "sing to me too". So I sang to him also. Boy, are they spoiled. And, to be honest, I love that they are spoiled in this way. They must love their momma!

I did ask the girls if they liked the way I sang to them together, or if they wanted me to sing to them separately. In complete unison, they both answered, "Together!" I love that so much too!

I am a very blessed momma!

The Erasure of Jacob's Birthday

I was asking Jacob what he wanted to do for his birthday and he told me that he wanted to have an "all boy", to include Steve, Spencer, Seth and 3 other boys from school. I told him that I could not guarantee that Spencer and Seth would be able to be there. To which he replied, "Then just erase my birthday." That is some serious business. Completely erase your birthday? That is some major cousin love. I do love that those boys are best friends.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Guess who had a sleepover?

Ella & Grace

Blake & Jake

Bryce & Grant

Jadyn & Ava

Scott and Katie (and Crew) stopped in to sleep (barely) on their way to Florida. It was a nice surprise (although it was not entirely a surprise, but it was). They were stopping, then they weren't, then they were, then they weren' get the picture. The kids DID have a hard time falling asleep, but who wouldn't when you could hang with your cousins?

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Have you ever looked at a librarian? Recently, I took an inventory of our library's current librarians and I noticed something. They ALL look the same. Even the young ones. Seriously. I was not, and am not, trying to "stereotype". They did it for me. The thing that makes me laugh the most is the glasses. The reason it makes me laugh is that yesterday as we were driving in the car, I looked back at my girls, who were playing "library". They told me they were taking turns being the librarian. Whoever got to be the librarian had a pair of wire-rimmed sunglasses and wore them half-way down their nose. And they both did that. I was laughing so hard that I almost peed my pants.

Interestingly, I had to talk to the school librarian today about a book Grace had checked out. Guess what she looked like? Young, long blonde hair, flashier clothing and a huge diamond ring. Not your typical librarian, at least according to my research.