No tv was a success!

Praise God for a new day! His mercies really are new each morning!

After going to bed at 6:30 last night it didn’t surprise me that they were awake at 6:30 this morning. It wasn’t as bad as it sounds. We had plenty of time together while we sat at the table for breakfast. We weren’t rushed at all. AND we did not watch any tv!

The boys asked if they could, but I just reminded them about what happened yesterday. I’m proud to say that we did not watch any tv after we all came home from school. We carved our pumpkin for this year and baked the seeds for a snack. After baths we even had time to read 3 books about pumpkins. The day seemed so much calmer and the kids were in a better mood. I’m so grateful for the positive change!

I have to share that Emma redeemed herself by asking if she could read out loud for me this morning. I had told her last night that I was going to write a note to her teacher telling her that she did not want to do it. I let her try again and she did well so I decided not to send the note after all.

I’m so grateful for my kids. Being a parent is so hard sometimes. I don’t know if the decisions I make are the best ones for them… But I definitely try my best at it. I admit when I am wrong to them. I ask them for their opinions sometimes. I make sure they know that I’m the boss, but I also want to be an honest and real mom to them.

“Dear LORD, help me to be a loving mother to my children. Give me the wisdom to guide and discipline according to their individual needs. Above all, let them learn about you through me. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.”

denisse

Keepin’ it real.

What a yucky day. You know those wonderful days, when your children are happy and obedient, and you just beam with joy at the family you have been blessed with? Well, today was NOT one of those days.

The day started with the usual. Emma getting ready and going to school. Ian drove her to school for the first time since having his surgery three weeks ago. Yay for that. The boys woke up cranky and hungry. They immediately wanted to watch something on tv and have a snack.

“No snack,” I said. “You have to eat breakfast.” “But Mommy, I want a treat…” The whining started. Luke requested the movie Cars about fifty six times today. I let him watch parts of it two different times. Each time I told him we had to turn it off he threw himself on the floor and screamed. I ignored him, but when that didn’t work he redirected his efforts and threw everything in his sight… Food, toys, my phone, whatever he could reach.

Jack was a bit better than Luke today, but barely. His request is How to Train your Dragon. We only have four episodes recorded and my guess is that he’s watched each one about five times.

Why would I allow them to watch tv you ask? Because I’m weak. That’s why. I dread arguing with them. I am too lazy to discipline. I just give in. What a bad mother they have.

Emma is usually pretty good. However, she had issues of her own tonight. She is supposed to read a story from her reader out loud for school and she did not want to do it. Emma is a great reader, but she struggles with confidence and is extremely shy. I will spare you the details, but I will just share that she did NOT follow through with her reading, AND she is crying in her bed as I write this.

How discouraging. All three of my kids had hard days, which makes for a terrible day for me.

This evening before dinner I did something I hope will help us all. I took away all tv privileges. I called everyone to the living room and covered up the tv with a white bath towel. “There will be no more tv. Please don’t ask me. The answer will be no.” Emma and Jack stared with blank expressions. Luke immediately cried, and that crying continued all through dinner as he sat on my lap.

After dinner they all got their pajamas on and went straight to bed. It was only 6:30. I’m praying for renewed strength and patience tonight. I hope our day is better tomorrow. Sorry to write such a negative post, but I’m just keeping it real. Our lives are far from perfect. Every day is a challenge. This parenting thing is hard work but I’m sure it will be worth it in the end. ūüôā

Denisse

book update.

Its been difficult to find time to write. ¬†I think about the book and have ideas for it all day long, but I haven’t actually sat down to write as much as I would like. I’m praying for more time to write and for that time to be really productive. Please join me in that prayer if you think of me. ¬†I’d really appreciate it!

I’m currently working on a book proposal for my memoir. ¬†I’ve decided to try to have my book published in the traditional way through a publisher (rather than self publishing.) ¬†The book proposal includes the first couple of chapters of the book, a very detailed description of the premise and demographics of ¬†the potential readers, and a chapter by chapter synopsis of the entire book. ¬†It will also include a letter to the literary agent where I can describe myself and my project. ¬†THIS is a BIG DEAL for me. ¬†I want this proposal to be GREAT. ¬†I want my proposal to stand out from a sea of other proposals these agents receive everyday. ¬†My story is a great one, but there are many other wonderful stories out there, too. ¬†I need to WOW them.

I’ve given myself a personal deadline. I want to mail TEN proposals to TEN different literary agents by Thanksgiving. ¬†Thanksgiving is six weeks away, but who’s counting?? ¬†If any of you reading this have any useful advice or info for me I’d really appreciate it. ¬†If any of you know anybody in the “business” I’d love their advice, too.

My hope is that one of these ten agents will be interested in representing me and pitching my book to publishers.  Then I could have an editor to help me through the writing process as I continue to write the rest of the story.

Some days I feel discouraged and not talented enough to write this story. ¬†I’ve thought about quitting, but I think I’m in too far. ¬†This book really is all I think about during the day, so God must really really want me to write it. ¬†I keep reminding myself that He is writing it through me- I am just His vessel. I want to look back a year from now and see how far we’ve made it. ¬†Hopefully the book is finished in a year. That is my prayer. Feel free to join me in that one, too.

If you haven’t already, please sign up for this blog. ¬†Agents and publishers like to see that I have people to “like” or “follow” me. ¬†It would be nice to show them a large number with the proposal. ūüôā Click on the top right and add your email address. ¬†You will get an email and will have to confirm your subscription. ¬†Thanks for doing that!

Ian will finally get his cast removed tomorrow!!! We are anxious to see what his hand looks like after surgery almost three weeks ago.  Thank you for the wonderful meals and food giftcards the last few weeks.  We are grateful!  They have helped keep me sane for sure!

Love to all,

denisse

 

a little encouragement today.

Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

No matter what our situation is, this verse can help us all.  Its not easy to be joyful sometimes. We do want to give up and stop praying. But I can tell you that its so much better to have joy and be thankful than to have no hope.

Sometimes the things in life don’t turn out like we hoped they would. Sometimes we get sick. Sometimes someone we love gets sick, or worse. Marriages fail, relationships are strained, finances are too tight…the list can go on and on. Through our own journey we’ve met people who are struggling with infertility, cancer, depression, and the loss of a child. I have learned that we all have struggles. ¬†Our struggles are no different than what others are going through.

I have made a very conscious, deliberate choice to practice the verse above. ¬†I’ve learned that no matter what my current circumstance is, I can always have joy. Having joy does not depend on what is happening in my life right now. ¬†Joy is constant in your heart.

Never stop praying. In fact, when life gets the hardest, I pray the most. In my opinion, when there is nothing more that I can do on my own, all I can do is pray.  God hears the brokenhearted.  He comforts us in our time of need.

Being thankful in our hard circumstances is not easy. How can I be thankful that my husband lost his legs and fingers? How can I be thankful that my kids will have to deal with this reality in their lives? The answer to those questions is this: I am thankful for the good that has come from the circumstances. I’m thankful for God’s provision for our family. I’m thankful to have a husband that is alive and healthy instead of being a widow and single mom of three kids. I’m thankful for the lessons that my kids have learned at such an early age. ¬†My kids have learned to be loving and accepting of all people, including those that are different from themselves. I’m thankful for God’s will in our lives because He can use it to bring others to Himself through it.

So, you see, no matter what is happening in your life, no matter what the circumstance, it is possible to have joy. God wants us to have joy in our hearts, to not give up when times get tough, and to find something to be thankful for in the good times and bad ones, too.

love,

denisse

crazy morning.

The aroma of strawberry pop tarts and coffee surrounded me as I got back in my car. I had just taken the boys to their class and Emma was already at school, so I was on my way home to Ian.  It had already been a crazy morning.  I overslept.  Instead of pushing snooze on my phone I had turned my alarm off when it went off at 6.  Luckily I woke up on my own at 6:40. I jumped out of bed and headed for the coffee. I had been looking forward to eating a yummy blueberry muffin with my coffee while I read before the kids woke up this morning, but now it would have to wait until later.

I set the mug under the dispenser and popped a coffee pod in. ¬†Ready. Set. Brew… I hurried back to my room and threw on workout pants and a workout shirt. ¬†Not because I planned on working out, no. ¬†I chose those because they are a “no brainer” option when I’m in a rush. ¬†Brush teeth, put on contact lenses, splash face with cold water, throw hair in pony tail. ¬†There, that should do it. ¬†Hurry back to coffee… add sugar (we are out of cream) and chug as much as I can without burning my mouth. ¬†This is definitely not the way I like to have my coffee, but it will have to do today.

I went into Emma’s room first. ¬†Poor girl, she is sweet as can be, but oh so slow. ¬†“Good morning, Lulu!” I said in my most cheerful voice. “Its time to get ready for school.” ¬†I turned on her lamp and she pulled her quilt up over her face in response. ¬†“Get dressed, go to the bathroom, and brush your hair. ¬†I’m going to wake your brothers up.”

Next I went to the boys’ room. “Jackie, Lukie, its time to wake up.” ¬†Opposite of Emma, Jack sat right up still half asleep and started to walk to the living room. ¬†“Can I watch How to Train Your Dragon, Mama?” ¬†“I don’t think so, Jack. ¬†We have to get dressed and have breakfast. ¬†Its a school day.” ¬†“Aaaaawwww! But you said—” ¬†I went back to check on Emma. ¬†She was sitting up in her bed putting her shirt on. ¬†Thank you, LORD!

I went back to the boys’ room and pulled out shirts and shorts for both boys, underwear for Jack, and a diaper for Luke. ¬†The boys were in the living room. ¬†“We can watch whatever is on right now. ¬†You can watch that OR nothing.” ¬†Curious George was on and I heard no complaints. ¬†I stripped each boy down and dressed them. ¬†Emma came down the hall dressed too.

LUNCHES!!! Oh my! I have to pack lunches! ¬†I set three lunchboxes on the counter and started packing. ¬†Goldfish baggies in all three, juice pouches for the boys. ¬†Jack wanted chicken nuggets in his lunch. ¬†I took some nuggets out of the freezer and popped them in the microwave. ¬†60 seconds. ¬†While that was going, I went to the pantry and tore off two pieces of foil. ¬†When the nuggets were warm I threw them on the pieces of foil and put leftover mac and cheese in there. ¬†Hopefully it stays warm, I thought. ¬†I’ll have to ask Jack later. ¬†The mac and cheese beeped and I put some in plastic containers for the boys. ¬†There. ¬†Nuggets, mac and cheese, goldfish, and juice. ¬†That’s a decent lunch, right?

“Everyone get your shoes on and let’s load up!!!” ¬†I grabbed lunchboxes and put them in backpacks. ¬†Then I grabbed my purse and the backpacks and headed out the door. ¬†Emma was in her seat, ready to go. ¬†Jack and Luke needed help buckling. ¬†I buckled them in. ¬†“I FORGOT MY COFFEE!!!” I said and headed back inside. ¬†I grabbed what was left of my lukewarm coffee and sat in the driver’s seat.

Yes!!! ¬†We did it! ¬†It was 7:32 and we were in the car! ¬†I handed each kid a strawberry iced pop tart (yes, they make a mess everywhere) and started the Good Morning song. ¬†CD number two, track 6. ¬† And reverse. ¬†We were going to have a great day! ¬†I just knew it! ¬†I took everyone where they needed to be and now I was on my way home… to eat my yummy blueberry muffin with a fresh cup of coffee! ¬†ūüôā