September 29, 2009

"A Million Miles in A Thousand Years" by Donald Miller

What kind of story are you living?

Is your life a good story?

Is it an epic story?

These are the questions that Donald Miller asks in his book, “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years.”

Miller takes his reader’s through his own journey of turning his life into a better story. Actually, turning his life into the best story.



I am kind of a self-help book junkie. I love reading books that inspire me to be a better person. I love books that give me insight on how to live a better life. I love when a book is able to explain some of my, well, shall we say quirkiness.

However, I would be lying if I told you that I read every one of them cover to cover. Because the truth is often I loose interest or find myself overwhelmed with the changes that the book’s author is suggesting.

This was not true with Miller’s book. I’m not sure that the book is technically classified as a self-help book. It may be more in the genre of a great motivation book. Because from the first page that is how I felt, “motivated.”

From the first page Miller pulled me into his story and made me want a better story for myself. He made me appreciate the hardships my life goes through. He made me appreciate that through my challenges I create a better story. It is all in how we handle the challenges and the hardships.

Comparing our lives to the creation of a story he shows us that all great stories have a main character, a main character that has to over come something, a main character that does overcome, a main-character that becomes better because of the challenges.

I wish I were better at expressing how much I enjoyed Miller’s book and how much it changed my perspective on life challenges. I know that because of this because I feel more confident about the challenges my life currently faces. Because of this book I feel that how I handle the challenges will either make for a good story or a bad one.

Because of Miller’s book I want to handle the challenges so that my life is a great story.

If you would like to purchase Miller's book click here.

As for the free one they gave me. I couldn't wait to give it away. That is how good the book was. I already gave it away. :)

September 28, 2009

Reviewing Books

Tomorrow I will be posting my first ever book review.

Believe it or not the number one thing I love to do, “Read!”

The number one thing I hate to do, “Review Said Books.”

However, the lure of reading free books and books not yet released had me signing up with this company.

I review for Thomas Nelson Book Review Bloggers

Who sent me this book.

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Actually, they sent me two.

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With a note that said they were so sure I would love the book that I would want to give one away.

My cynical brain thought they were pretty cocky. I don’t just like any old book. Maybe I would hate it and then they wasted not one but two books on me.

Turns out they knew what they were talking about. I LOVED THE BOOK!

However, this is kind of like a paid post. They did give me two books and all and they have rules. Including, not posting a post about the book until tomorrow. Turns out that is the day the book is released. So you have to wait to read my first ever book review.

Be kind, be gentle and remember. I loved said book.

September 23, 2009

Polly or Grizz?

Last night was my first night of school and the very first thing I learned was the six principles of effective leadership. It was a pretty good lecture with some interesting insight. The sixth principle was, "Be a Day Maker not a Day Breaker."

Do you know what that means? Because everyone in the room started to laugh and I just sat there kind of clueless.

Day Maker?

What is a day maker?

The professor soon explained that a day maker is a person who makes your day. You know who they are, that person who just makes you smile and be thankful.

Ohhhhh! Okay. I get that. Pollyanna!

He went on to ask us, if we went back in our lives and asked everyone we had ever met how they would rank us, how do you think we would do. One being a day breaker and a ten being a day maker.

That is when I laughed out loud.

Only no one else laughed.

I'm pretty sure I'm a 2.5 maybe a 3. Yah, I'm a 3. Pollyanna and I would probably not be friends. Except for maybe she would try to be my friend because that girl had away of wiggling herself into the lives of day breakers.

Only I'm pretty sure I would be her downfall. It is probably a fairly good thing that Pollyanna never met up with me.

I'm curious, how would you rank yourself. Are you a Pollyanna or a Grizzly? Personally, I'm all about the grizzly except it looks like for the next few weeks I am going to have to channel my inner Polly. Could be scary.

September 17, 2009

Setting Goals

I have decided that I have a very unique way of accomplishing goals.

First, I make a goal. Usually something completely out of character. Something way to difficult and something that I should not be doing.

Second, I figure out how I am going to accomplish this out of character, difficult, should have left it alone goal.

Third, I work toward the goal, the whole time grumbling, complaining, whining, and defeating myself at every turn, angle and way.

Fourth, I get towards the end and realize I have worked to hard, spent to much time and energy focusing on the goal not to complete the goal and think to myself, "Ahh Hell (I tried to think of a non-swear word but honestly this is what I say to myself), I might as well finish."

Fifth, Goal accomplished

You know what I am figuring out. I make my life very difficult. I'm pretty sure other people accomplish goals without all the drama.

Maybe, don't quote me on this, but maybe Al gets her drama from her mother.

Maybe?

September 15, 2009

Don't Do It

WARNING!

Never ask your family the following sentence:

If I were an animal I'd be a (Blank) because (Blank).

For my first day with the 3rd and 4th grade students I decided to do this activity, where you say, "If I were an animal I'd be a (Blank) because (Blank)." I wanted to give them all time to think about it and to understand what I was asking so I went to my family and asked them the question. That way I would have a few examples for the kids.

The responses they gave me are still brewing in my head.

Me: So I want you to answer this question about me. If I were an animal I'd be a (blank) because (blank).

Husband: I'm answering this about you.

Me: Yes, about me.

Husband: Oh that's easy. If you were an animal you would be a bull.

Me: A WHAT!

Husband: A bull. If you were an animal you would be a bull.

Me: (silently glaring, silently thinking what kind of husband calls his wife a bull?) Why would I be a bull?

Husband: (Look in eyes saying oh crap how do I get myself out of this) ummm... well... because... ummm... you take everything head on. You charge the situation you jump in and handle everything.

Me: I'm pretty sure I've been insulted I'm just not sure how.

Husband: No it's a good thing, really.

So as if that conversation didn't awaken enough conflict I went to my seventh grader and asked her the same question.

7th Grader: You, Oh that is easy your a Lion.

Me: A LION! What is up with you people? Why would you say I'm a Lion?

7th Grader: Because your a leader mom. (Rolling her eyes, and using that grin that tells me she is totally lying.)

I still haven't decided if my husband thinking I'm a bull and my daughter thinking I'm a lion is a good thing. Does this mean I'm to aggressive? Does this mean they view me as a predator ready to pounce? Sometimes, I think I would be smarter not to ask my family what they think.

September 14, 2009

First Day

Today was my first day of work with the kids. Guess what? I'm tired! I'm exhausted! I feel like I just rode a bike a 100 miles. It was fun and the kids are great but oh my gosh I'm tired.

Did I mention I was tired?

This working stuff is a lot of work.

Kids, well they're kids.

(Bet you read this blog just to read the obvious)

They are totally random. Trying to keep them on task is like trying to keep a puppy from chewing.

FRUITLESS!

The ideas that come out of their heads. Umm, okay!

Was I like that?

Are my kids like that?

Don't answer that I already know the answer. I just don't particularly like the answer.

Then there are the names, PARENTS!!!! What are you thinking? There is one child that I am going to call Whoseit all year because I cannot pronounce his name.

Which is obviously my problem and not his being as he told me how to say it 12 times.

Then I had to ask the 6th graders what they are reading because I'm cool and I know all about books.

Except for that one, and that one, and I haven't heard of that one, and I didn't know that one had a new one.

I have so much work to do!

Which makes me tired. I'm tired.

I need to go reserve some books at the library. That one and that one and definitely that one.

September 13, 2009

E Eats Everything

A. and I think this hilarious the rest of the family is looking at us like we are weirdo's, what do you think?

September 12, 2009

Loose Tooth Drama

Tooth Drama. Never in my life would I think I would have loose tooth drama. However, it is becoming obvious that my dear little Al has a loose tooth phobia. I can't tell you how much tooth drama it is causing. Before yesterday Brent had been forced to pull three loose teeth from her mouth. The last tooth he pulled out had turned a nice color of gray before we were able to get it out. The result of pulling the teeth has been escalating drama. I don't even want to tell you how it took me and Brent both to get the last one out. One of us was holding her down the other yanking it out. Her fear of losing teeth has caused her to make sure she doesn't wiggle any loose teeth, which includes lightly brushing her teeth and carefully eating. It is a lot of drama.

Yesterday, was even more drama as a loose tooth lost a filling. Al was left with a very loose, very broken tooth. Which she swore up and down hurt. I was suspicious, figuring that there were probably no roots or nerves left in the tooth. However, I was not in the mood for tooth drama and something had to be done. I called the dentist and set up an appointment to take her in.

Once we were at the dentist office I explained the situation. I told them about the broken, loose, decaying tooth. They didn't even need an ex-ray because her ex-rays from May showed that there was no root. The ex-rays from May showed that the tooth should have already fallen out. Are you getting yet the extent she goes through NOT to loose a tooth. The dentist asked her if it hurt.

She said, "No it is fine, can I go now?"

The Dentist said, "Now Al don't you want us to get that tooth out?"

She said, "Nope, I'm good c-ya."

Then I tackled her into the chair and they slipped the laughing gas on to her nose. Kid's on laughing gas. You got to love it.

Then the Dentist tried to ask her again if he could pull the tooth out. She was still not biting he tried every kind of kid psychology he had ever learned. She still said no. He finally gave up and asked me what I wanted to happen. I said yank the sucker. I also asked how many were left to come out. FOUR! Four, I had to live through 4 more loose baby teeth. Can I retire from this mom thing yet? I asked how close they were to coming out. He said they should have already come out.

He asked Al if she wanted him to take out more than the one. She said no! He tried every bit of kid psychology he had ever learned. She still said no. He finally gave up and asked me what I wanted to happen. I asked him to pull out the other eye tooth. Since the first one had turned a nice color of gray before we got it out. He agreed that it was a tuff tooth to loose and he would pull that one out.

Which leaves us with three baby teeth. Three teeth left to go when hopefully the drama of loose teeth will end. It is going to end, please tell me it is going to end.


September 09, 2009

So Pretty

The garden post have been on the light side this summer.

I bet your disappointed.

I bet every time you have logged on to this blog you have hoped for a garden post.

I bet the lack of garden post has saddened you.

Well don't fret. I'm not one to disappoint, sadden or dash hopes. In response to your many, many emails I am posting garden picks.

(Ok, I haven't received even one email, but I'm pretty sure you have been meaning to email, I'm pretty sure you have just been busy, I'm pretty sure that you were going to do it today.)

(right?)

This year I tried a few new flowers and overall I have been pretty happy.

One of my favorites has been the Dahlia.

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Very frilly and feminine. Makes me feel like a girl just looking at it.

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A very close second is this cute little flower. This is a 4 o'clock. The blooms open up in the late afternoon and stay open until the sun hits them the next day.

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Sunflower. Not exactly a new flower to our yard but this was a little different than the ones we have planted in the past.

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I have been calling this flower fuzzy wuzzy.

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Aren't you glad I listened to all your emails? Well the emails that you were going to send. :)

September 07, 2009

Blind

I wear contacts. Most days I have my contacts in for close to 16 hours. Most nights my contacts come out after a 1/2 hour of my eyes yelling, "That's enough! Get these things out." My eyes itch, water and burn until I finally take them out.

Once the contacts are out I am instantly plunged into a fuzzy wuzzy world. Everything becomes non-descript and takes on a basic fuzzy shape. Except for small things. Small things simply disappear all together. Small things like eye glasses.

Eye glasses that I need in order to see. Every night I go through the same routine of trying to hunt down my eye glasses AFTER I have taken my contacts out. Every night I ask myself WHY don't you find them before you take your contacts out?

I search high, most of the time I have left them on a dresser, night stand or bathroom counter. I search low I have been known to throw them on the floor after reading at night. Most of the time under the bed so I don't accidentally step on them.

What is most amusing about this hunt is I can't see a darn thing. Most of the time my hands pass within inches of said glasses. I end up moving on to the next stop with the glasses remaining in place at the last spot.

Some of you are asking, Why I don't leave them in the same spot each night? I don't know I guess for the same reason I don't find them when I can still see. Again, I don't know the answer to that question.

The end result is I spend a good 1/2 hour every night stumbling around the house looking for the suckers. Now ask me why my husband and kids don't help.

I know the answer to that.

They think it is dang funny to watch mom stumble around for a 1/2 hour every night.

September 04, 2009

Holy CoW!

Today I went to my first school district meeting.
Part of my job is attending a monthly, training, type meeting.

As I sat there listening, taking notes, and doing my best not to respond to the text coming in on my phone, it dawned on me, "I'm a working mom."

It kind of took me by surprise to realize that my days of being a stay at home mom are over. I know that I have worked at the pool over the last couple years but I never really thought of myself as a working mom.

My schedule was very flexible, there was always people around to take my shift, H. hung out with me. It was a job but it didn't interfere with being a stay at home mom.

I was a little taken back to realize that I am officially a working mom. I can honestly say I never thought I would be. I really thought that I would stay at home and be "Suzy Homemaker," for the rest of my days. It has been a huge mental adjustment changing the plan.

Most days I am pretty confident that I am on the right path. That truth be told I am really not the "Suzy Homemaker" type. I am pretty sure staying at home day after day by myself would not be a good thing for me. I am discovering that I enjoy commotion and a quiet house just creeps me out.

Most days I am pretty confident and then I will be sitting in a three hour long meeting and it will dawn on me. Holy Cow I am a working mom. I'm doing the right thing, right?

My favorite pics of S

Good pictures of S. are getting harder and harder to come by. She has entered the phase where she acts self concious. I have all kinds of pictures with her big, fake, smile. Total frustration.

Then I have a whole slew of these pics the ones where she has about had it with me.

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Then I had this one. Real smile and all.

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September 03, 2009

The After School Routine

In approximately 20 minutes all of this silence is going to end. YAY!! However, when all the silence ends it means that all the monsters are going to be home. Maybe I shouldn't complain about the silence.

First S. will get home. She will walk in the door with a big smile on her face. A smile that says, "That's right I'm big, I'm home first. Niener Niener." She is loving the fact that she beats all the little monsters home. That whole 15 minutes defines her as the big Sis. Sometimes it is the small things in life that make us the happiest.

Approximately 15 minutes later A. will walk in the door. By himself without the other two. No he doesn't walk through the door he struts. Promptly he drops his backpack in MY front room and heads for the kitchen. He says nothing he is as Willow puts it "A Ninja." This is mainly because I will say, "Where is your brother and sister? You are suppose to walk home with them. Why did you beat them home?" He just nods and says, "They were right behind me."

I sigh loudly and say, "Can't you just walk home together and get along for five minutes."

He then says, "I did wait they walk slow."

It is the same conversation every day. I never get a satisfactory answer. He never waits for his younger siblings.

Following this conversation he struts downstairs where within moments I hear, "Knock it off! Stop it! Your a jerk." Alpha Male working on Big Sis. One of these days he will probably pee on her.

A few short moments later the younger two walk in the door, Together! It is amazing they have grasped the concept of sibling and together. They will say, "Mom, we're home! They will tell me that they had a great day at school." I will say, "You did, Why?" They will both normally answer, "Because we got to color."

Again sometimes it is the simplest things that make us the happiest.

A little bit later they too will go down the stairs where a few short moments later I will hear, "Knock it off. Stop it! Your MEAN!" Again big Bro working to declare his Alpha Male spot.

He will probably pee on them one day soon too.

September 02, 2009

My favorite pics of Al

Below are my favorite pics of Al. She is always fun to take pictures of. She has all the attitude and a smile to boot. Except for when she doesn't. That is my Al one or the other. Never anything between.

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This one is probably my favorite.

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Weird!

Right this moment I am home alone.

Right this moment I am home alone in a very quiet house.

Right this moment I am home alone in a very creepy quiet house.

It is broad day light and my house is so quiet that I am getting the heeby geebies.

I know that there are plenty of mom's at home with kids crawling all over them that are thinking, "She is complaining! She is seriously complaining!!"

Yes, yes I am. This alone thing is weird. This typing on the computer and not listening to kids argue thing is weird. This having to go the bathroom without anyone here to ask me why, when, how and whatcha doin. IS WEIRD!

Just thought you should know. Home's without arguing, fighting, mom mom mom mom mom children. ARE WEIRD!!!!