Friday, December 31, 2010

Set A Part - From All Else, To God, For His Glory

Join us this weekend as we close out 2010 and enter into 2011.  

Three days, three opportunities to end right and start right. 

FRIDAY NIGHT - 6:00pm to 8:00pm and SATURDAY AFTERNOON - 12:00pm to 2:00pm 
A flexible free floating opportunity to close out 2010 and open 2011 with prayer, music, communion, and the reading of selected passages of Scripture. Come to both or come to one. Come by yourself, with your family, friends or small group. Come whenever you choose and stay for ten minutes or two hours, it is totally up to you.

 SUNDAY MORNING - Both Services: 9:15am and 11:00am 
Join us at one of the two services for a unique worship experience 
as we set ourselves apart in 2011 from all else - to God - for His  glory.

Josh and I will be leading in worship.  
Come join us as we strive to bring this new year in the right way!

A Look Back At 2010

I thought it would be fun to look at the TOP 10 POSTS that were viewed on my blog from 2010 to recap.

Here they are from most viewed to least:

Foreshadowing Of My Little Preteen - I think this one is about to be deleted so all the perverts searching for "Preteen" images and links will stop looking at my little girl!

And Then There Were 4!!!!

How Can You Afford To Adopt?

The Lord Gives and The Lord Takes Away

Not Me Monday

"...and then he told me my note was cheesy." - A Note To The Worship Team

"BIGGER Than The Bunny" - PreOrder Today

Traveling With Cloth Diapers

It's OK For Christians To Say "No"

Because I Now Know It's Value

Thursday, December 30, 2010

What We're Having - Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Pesto Over Whole Wheat Pasta

Last night we tried a new recipe and it was so DELICIOUS and healthy that I just had to share!

Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Pesto over Whole Wheat Pasta

Yield:  6 Servings
  • 2 (16-ounce) jars of roasted red peppers (without salt), drained
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite salsa
  • 3/4 cup walnuts, toasted
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 ounces whole wheat pasta
Toast walnuts in a 375 degree Fahrenheit oven for about 5 minutes.
Pulse until fairly smooth.  Slowly drizzle in olive oil until well blended.  Cook whole wheat pasta (2 ounces dried per serving) in boiling water for approximately 10-12 minutes.  Drain reserving 2 tablespoons of the cooking water.  Stir pasta and water into warmed sauce and serve.
Note:  Always save a little of the cooking water to mix with the pasta as the starch in the water will allow the sauce to stick better to the pasta.

You can find other yummy healthy recipes at!

Story In Pictures - It's In His Blood

 Music just runs in Zeke's blood
 He loves to write music with his daddy
 He'll make anything into a guitar...
 whether it's his new sword he got for Christmas...
his electric guitar...
 a box (because we forgot his on this particular trip:)...
 his acoustic on stage with his daddy...
 or a land peg from the ground.
He's raising the Via family band and doesn't even know it!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

This, That and The Other

I'm sitting here in my chair peering outside as I watch my husband cut firewood outside.  It's his new addiction lately.  I sure don't mind the warmness of the fire throughout the house.  Besides there's just something kind of sexy about a man chopping wood:)

I deemed today a "Mandatory Nap Day".  You may remember, right before the surgery we were playing in Charlotte and before that was my Nanna's funeral in CO so my kids had been on the road for weeks.  When their bodies let down, the tears flow continuously and the attitudes scream out.  So, in order to keep my sanity, I am sitting in the quiet, once again, while their little bodies rejuvenate while they sleep.

We got home yesterday afternoon from the Via Christmas up in Roanoke, VA.  I know we always give numbers, but if you could only imagine this house full of people and children.  Just because I can, here are the numbers again...17 adults, 12 kids - 5 and under, at least 2 preggers and 2 dogs...sheesh.  It was a lot of fun, but after being home alone with Josh for 10 days on bed rest, to say that it was overwhelming is an understatement.  My emotions were kickin' in high gear...

This week is "First-Time Obedience Boot Camp".  After being away from Josh and I, the kids are having a horrendous bit of a hard time obeying.  I'll tell you more about the creative way we are bribing our kids trying to help our kids learn to be kind to each other and obey mommy and daddy right away.

I had my follow-up appointment this morning from my surgery.  My pregnancy test came back negative, which is a good thing.  I didn't think I'd ever say that.  That just means that my pregnancy hormones have gone down to at least 2000 and I am out of any more danger.  They did tell me that I am at a higher risk of another Ectopic Pregnancy the next time around, so if/when we ever get another positive pregnancy test I need to be seen immediately and monitored closely throughout the pregnancy.

As I sat there in the waiting room this morning, watching all the pregnant bellies coming and going, I couldn't help but feel jealous.  But at the same time, relieved.  Jealous that I no longer had our baby in my belly, relieved that I don't have to start all over with the baby stage,  jealous that everybody else is getting pregnant around me...and on the first try (or so it seems), relieved that I don't have to be uncomfortable and nauseous for the next 9 months.  Sad that I'm not pregnant...relieved that I'm not pregnant...  I am trying to remember that our story is different than everyone else's story.  We are just using this to press us on in our adoption and just work toward the little girl whom we are waiting to hold in our arms soon.

On a happier note...we had our family Christmas today.  I racked up on the kids gifts at this summer's Kid's Exchange.  They loved each of their presents.  Josh got me the most awesome gift ever.  He made my blog into a book!!!  Well, actually just 2010...we'll have to start saving to get the other years printed.  If only I didn't write so stinkin' much, ha!  It is so neat to look through it, though.  It was the PERFECT gift:)

What was your favorite Christmas gift?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

From Us To You

We are in Virginia enjoying, the snow with our three kids, my jammies, lots of naps, family and food!

Today it is Christmas Eve here at the Via house as we wait for the last couple of families to trickle in so we can celebrate Christmas all together.  All 17 adults, 12 kids and 2 in-the-belly kids:)

Josh and I got here on Friday night around 11:30pm after the awesome Christmas Eve services at Journey! It was wonderful to cuddle up next to our kids as they slept quietly.  They have all been pretty clingy, seeing as it had been 10 days since we'd seen them.  *sigh*

I just wanted to wish you all a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!

We all have so much to be thankful for...

Friday, December 24, 2010

It's Christmas Eve!

Come on out and join us at Journey Church

3500 Spring Forest Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27616

December 24, 2010
4pm and 6pm

My doctor has cleared me to play 3 songs:)
So, I'll see you there!
Let's celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

What Did You Say? - "...Stay Out Of The Kitchen"

Preface:  While Josh and I were laying in bed talking last night we were blown away with how blessed we have been by our family and friends in the area over the past week while I've been recouping.  We have more food in the house than I have ever seen in my house at one time...ever.  It is very humbling to be served the way you all have come to serve us in so many ways!

Me: "I know, it's crazy how much food is in there.  My medicine has made me lose some of my appetite though, I think.  I mean, I am eating, but I just don't feel "hungry" at all.  It's weird."

I am thinking Josh is saying:  "I am pretty proud of how you have stayed out of the kitchen the last few days."

What he actually said was:  "I am pretty proud of how you have stayed out of the kitchen the last few days."

Wait a minute...I heard him correctly?!

I'm thinking:  "Wow, I mean, do I normally just stuff my face all day when I'm home with the kids?"

See, what he meant to have said was:  "Let me complete this thought with you and then move on to the next one baby.  OK...I'm sorry you haven't had much of an appetite lately, I'm sure that's normal after your kind of surgery.  Now, moving on in my train of thought...I'm pretty proud of you for staying off of your feet and not wanting to straighten the house and for staying out of the kitchen and not trying to keep up with the dishes." isn't that much better;)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Music To My Ears - Josh Via ('s a FREE Christmas Album Download

My husband is awesome.

There, I said it.  Sometimes I just can't contain myself:)

So, while he's been here taking care of me this week, and while Meme has the kids, we've had a lot of time to get little projects done, while sitting of course, that normally just wouldn't happen if the kids were around.

And one of those projects was birthed right here in our humble abode.  Josh created a little Christmas Album EP for your enjoyment!  It is called "The Sleepy Town Christmas Sessions" and...



If you feel so inclined, there is a DONATE button where you can donate money for our adoption.  We thought it would be a fun way to raise money to bring our little girl home from Uganda while giving you some good Christmas music to listen all at the same time:)

So, go check it out here and make sure you download the album today!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

You Know What's Cooler Than Making $600 At Our Yard Sale?

Well, we just figured out that we have the most AWESOME yard for a yard sale!

It comes with built-in parking...
 Friends who have awesome kids who believe in what we are doing.
They woke up at the butt-crack to set up and pass out Hot Chocolate to our buyers.
(Can you see Rainy and Zeke's Cash register?  I put it to good use on Saturday:)
 More awesome friends who totally owned this yard sale after I got sick
and made tons of signs to give awareness to the cause...
 A huge yard right by a main street through town,
to lay out all the donated items for us to sell.

And help worth more than they'll ever know!
Our friends and church body have really shown up this past week
to help not only make this yard sale happen,
but just loving on us and praying over us through this time.

We were glad that the flurries started AFTER we were done!
...and yes, we did use our grill for a heater, ha!

After counting up all the cash and change we had made
we were totally overwhelmed how much the Lord provided!
We were hoping to get about $150 (we've never done yard sales before)
but obviously God had bigger plans.


Yup, exactly $600!
We are MORE than thrilled.

But here is what was even cooler than the money we made to bring our little girl home.
After it was all said and done we still had several boxes that consisted of
shoes, coats, baby items, clothes and toys.

Our original plan was just to load it up and drop it off at the goodwill,
but decided, instead to do something way better.

Josh and our friend Craig, loaded everything up in his truck,
grabbed a hand full of "All That Glitters"
and drove down the road to the trailer park where we know there are hurting people.
The guys then played "Santa" as they delivered much-needed items to those people.
Some without electricity, another who was a 16-year-old mom, among many others.

What a gift!

Those of you who donated for our yard sale not only helped 
to give the gift of a family for the little girl we are hoping to bring home,
but you brought the hope of Christ and 
much-needed aid to local families in our very own community.

Praise The Lord!

Monday, December 20, 2010

"BIGGER Than The Bunny" - Pre Order TODAY!

So, my book didn't make it here for Thanksgiving and it's not looking like it'll be here for Christmas or even the new year...BUT...shortly after the new year it should be in my hands, and hopefully in many of yours, PTL!  This sweet momma was about to loose her patience over this one;)

Ahem, anyway, I have had several of you ask if you can "pre-order" the book so you can give it to friends and family for Christmas and then, when they get here I'll mail them out to them ASAP.

They are still unsure as to exactly how much the book will retail for so we are kind of going off of the pricing that Josh's book is and will probably have to adjust when the book actually gets here, so don't get upset if/when the price changes next month.  We are pricing the book at $15 right now, with the additional option of donating $20 or $25 for a book and the additional proceeds will go toward our adoption!

Here's a sweet incentive to help the sales of this book:
A percentage of all the proceeds and donations will be going directly to adoption fund:)

So, here's what you need to do:
  1. Purchase the book on our secure PAYPAL account that we have set up.
  2. Make sure you fill out the "shipping address" section for wherever you want the book to be sent when it is complete.
  3. Drag the Cover Illustration to your desktop and print it off, along with the book synopsis write-up at the end of this post, and wrap it up for your beloved recipient:)
I'm so excited to get some feedback from this little devotional and I hope you enjoy this journey with your kids to explain what Easter is really about!
***REMEMBER: This devotional begins during the week of 
Ash Wednesday, which is March 9th in 2011***

Here's What People Are Saying About The Book - 

Tasha indicates her desire for God's Word to come alive to children.  Having worked with children for years, I am confident that the devotional thoughts, the activities and the table discussion starters will indeed bring life to God's Word for any children involved.  You and your children will be most prepared for all the Resurrection is for us as you use this extraordinary, creative devotional book during the Lenten season.  I only wish that someone had provided a book like Bigger Than the Bunny during our children's growing up years.
Donna Thompson – Chaplain To Women, Columbia International University

Bigger Than the Bunny is an excellent resource that will enable you to teach your children the true meaning of Easter.  The activities are applicable to all age levels from preschoolers to older children as well as simple and effective.  It’s sure to provide a fun learning experience for everyone in your family.
Holly Furtick, Elevation Church

From the first chapter it is evident that Tasha Via has a passion to teach her kids biblical truth.  She is a gifted wife, mother, writer, musician and woman of God.
Beverly Carroll – Journey Church, Raleigh, NC

Purchase and Donate

*print this for your gift message*

What is "BIGGER Than The Bunny" All About? 

Do you ever wonder how in the world you're supposed to teach your children about the true meaning of Easter when there are bunnies hopping around in every store and Easter candy begging to be eaten by little ones?  Do you question whether to leave the whole crucifixion part out so you don't scare the younger ones or just try to tiptoe around the miraculous resurrection because it sounds too crazy?  Bigger Than the Bunny will help you answer these questions while giving you some practical and fun ways to bring this story to life for your children, as well as for the whole family.

Please feel free to share this via Facebook, twitter, blog posts, etc.

Not Me Monday

I really don't worry about my weight all that much.  Honestly I don't.  I naturally have a pretty high metabolism (Praise The Lord!) and I stay fairly active.  I mean, I have 3 young children, ha!

So last week, when my abs started getting harder and harder to see and when my abdomen began looking more and more like I had a little "pooch", as Josh and I refer to the bloated look I often get around the time of my period or during the first several weeks of pregnancy, I would never begin fretting about getting older and my metabolism finally starting to taper off.

Good grief, didn't I remember the pain I was in and realize that maybe that had something to do with it?

Nope, not me!

I also wouldn't be so determined that I was "losing my figure" and, in spite of the pain, set up my Pilates mat and DVD and lay down to begin the "sidekick series".

No way!  That's just stupid.  I mean, that's just asking for more pain!

And since I just KNEW this all had to be related, I'd never lay on my side, unable to do the exercise, hoping that maybe by watching it my body would be motivated to get rid of the "pooch" anyway:)

Good thing that didn't happen to me, because then I might just feel stupid for even attempting pilates after learning that I was having medical complications, not a mid-life crisis, ha!

And I'm way smarter than that:)

Sunday, December 19, 2010


I've had a lot of time on my hands the last couple of days.  Today I am working on "filing" all my pictures on my computer.  It's been like 3 years ya'll!!!  It is WAY overdue.  Anyway, look what I came across.

How Cute Are My KIDS, ahhh:)

I kinda miss 'em...

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Lord Gives and The Lord Takes Away

What is going on with you?  What happened?  Did you know?  Are you okay?  How's the pain?  How are you feeling?  Has everything sunk in yet?

These are the questions that have been coming in this week after our terrifying whirlwind of a day we had on Tuesday.  So for all of you who are worried, praying, speculating and just plain curious here are the events that have unfolded this week.  Hopefully this post will answer your questions and lead you to know exactly how you can pray for our family.

Two Fridays ago I began having some abdominal pain and trouble/pain urinating.  I was already scheduled to go in for my Medical exam for our home study so just waited the pain out through the weekend.  While I was at the doctor's they didn't seem too concerned but ran a few tests that all came back negative.  They just figured it was cycle-related and told me to come back if the pain didn't go away or got any worse.

The pain subsided long enough for me to fly out to Colorado for my grandmother's funeral, which Areyna and I were so grateful that we were able to attend.  I was still having some abdominal issues, headaches, fatigue and mild nausea but overall was feeling alright.

When Josh and the boys came to pick us up at the airport on Saturday we headed straight down to Charlotte for the weekend so we could lead at Ridge Church.  We made it home on Monday, late afternoon, and I began my period, I thought.  Cramping started and my pain was coming back with force.  By the time I woke up in the morning I was having difficulty breathing and the pain was getting pretty excruciating.  I can handle pain pretty well and thought it was probably just cycle-related, but Josh insisted that I call the doctor and go in immediately after almost passing out twice.

We rushed to the doctor right away and the doctor was concerned as soon as he saw my face.  He knew something was seriously wrong.  After a short exam he asked me to call Josh and the kids in the room to discuss the options.  After talking through what he thought could possibly be wrong they called an ambulance in to transfer me to the hospital.

My heart rate was over 150, my blood pressure was dropping and I was severely dehydrated.  After lots of tests, blood work and more tests, they came in with the prognosis.  I was suffering from an Ectopic Pregnancy.

Now before you start asking questions about this, let's just stop and answer a few of them right up front.
Aren't you adopting?  Yes
Were you trying to get pregnant?  We'd been trying to get pregnant since last November with no luck and, although we weren't actively "trying" to have a baby anymore because of the adoption, we weren't preventing either.
Did you know you were pregnant?  No.  We had no clue.  It wasn't our most "active" month, if you know what I mean;)

Let's continue on with the journey...

So, when the doctor came in and shared the news that we were pregnant we were filled with mixed emotions.  We had no idea.  We also knew that this pregnancy was not a safe one and that we were in the process of losing the baby so that was pretty overwhelming to process.  We still are processing that one.

We also knew that I needed surgery immediately to stop the bleeding.  After an ultrasound showing no pregnancy in the uterus, they found large amounts of blood and fluid in my abdomen, as well as very high pregnancy hormones.  And that is why I'd felt so bloated and looked like I was about 3 months pregnant.  I'd probably been bleeding into my stomach for almost 2 weeks and didn't even know it.

As I was being transported to another hospital for my surgery I was trying to make light of the situation because I felt silly with all this attention on me, I suppose, but the ambulatory staff reassured me that this was very serious and I could die if we didn't take care of it immediately.  It was then that I began realizing just how fragile our lives really are.

We'd been trying to bring another life into this world all this time and we finally did it.  But wait, it wasn't our doing at all...well, we did have a small part in it, ha!, but it is the Lord's doing.  He opens and closes wombs, he gives life and he takes life.  He is perfect and his timing is perfect.

Anyway, I made it through surgery and a blood transfusion, I had lost about a liter of blood, and am sitting at home with my wonderful husband.  I am totally overwhelmed with the amount of help, prayers, meals, love and support we have had from our family and church over the past couple of days.  I have been moved to tears more than once (a day, at least) by this fact.  This is what the body of Christ is all about!

We are so grateful that the surgery went well.  I have had no complications so far.  I am healthy.  We have a little baby in heaven that we will see again someday.  Our kids are being well taken care of.  We have everything we need, and then some!

"Peace I leave with you.  My peace I give to you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Your heart must not be troubled or fearful."
John 14:27

Thursday, December 16, 2010

How Can You Afford To Adopt?

Josh and I have been asked several times, "How in the world can you afford to adopt?"

First of all, we can't afford it.  It is a step in faith, believing that God has called us to adopt and standing on the promises that He will always provide for His children, even the children that are in the process of adopting his other children:)

That being said, we are also working on several things to raise money to bring our little girl home.

  • The first event we are doing is our Adoption Yard Sale!  Here are the details:

Via Adoption Yard Sale
Saturday, December 18th
At Our House here in Rolesville
8am to whenever

In light of this weeks events we have been asked if we are going to cancel the yard sale and the answer is NO!  We have been warned, by some very loving friends, that we are not allowed to cancel or post-pone this yard sale.  They have already put in a lot of hard work to help us throw this thing together.  Here's just one of the sweet things you can expect - a warm cup of hot chocolate for the shoppers:)  (Thanks Mayhugh family!)  Josh and I aren't going anywhere, so if you are still interested in donating items you can come drop them off anytime before Saturday!
  • Another project that we are hoping to get done is a brainchild of Josh's.  I don't know if he wants me to share the details until it is closer to completion, so, stay tuned:)
  • My book is FINALLY in production, as of the 14th, and hopefully I'll have the rough copy within another week or so, yeah!  Part of the funds from sales for my book will be going toward our adoption.
  • We are working on just plain SAVING!  You know when someone says, "You can afford _____________, it's only a $1 a day" or "Just give up your Starbucks coffee every week and you'll be able to afford ____________."  Well, I don't know about you, but I never go to my bank and withdraw $.75 for every soda I decide to refrain from drinking, or the $3.75 for my Starbucks drink every week, or the $1/ day for whatever reason.  I've never been able to figure that out.
But, here is what we have been doing.  When we see something we want really bad, and choose NOT to buy it, I'll go to the checkbook and deduct whatever amount the item was and just write "For Our Adoption" in the margin.  It is still in our account, but the figures don't show that it is there and we won't spend it anywhere else.  So, for example, we don't have a Tree Skirt for our Christmas tree.  I went out to go buy one at the beginning of December and they were between $20-$30!  What in the world.  I just couldn't justify buying  a silly little tree skirt when that $30 could go toward a needed document for our adoption or 30 copies of documents.  Have I mentioned how many copies you have to make of everything for an adoption, sheesh!  Anyway, when I got home I got out the checkbook and deducted $30 from our account and now we have $30 for our adoption in no time.  I also figured out that a pretty curtain can be just as nice as a tree skirt around the bottom of our tree!  I do the same when I run out to Target and am tempted to get a Caramel Macchiato.  I'll go home and deduct $3.50 and voila, we now have $33.50 in our adoption fund!  We also got another $15 chunk for our adoption fund because we went shopping for the tiniest Christmas tree we could find.  You know, most trees are around $35-$40 and we were looking to spend about $15.  But check out our tree!  It was only $18 and it is perfect!  Now we're up to $48.50, what?!

  • After we have a completed Homestudy we are going to be able to apply for grants and loans to help with everything else.  This will be a huge help!
So, that is how we are doing it.  How about you?  What have you done for your adoption fundraising or if you aren't/haven't adopted, what ideas can you offer to help us raise funds to get our little girl home?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Snapfish - Hot Deal

I just read this post and just HAD to share it!

If you go to and use the coupon code MERRY1213 you get 100 free prints with any $5 purchase.  You still have to pay shipping but it should be less than $6 for those 100 prints.

There's an added bonus if you go through EBATES.  A 10% back kind of bonus:)  You gotta love that!

This snapfish coupon code expires on Sunday, December 19th so go take advantage of this great deal.  This is how I get all my pictures to scrapbook.

WARNING:  You may be reading a lot of deals and random posts from me over the next couple of weeks as I am on bed rest and not much else to do while  *sigh*  I'll fill you in on that little incident in the days to come.

Lessons From The Classroom - Money Matters

This fall Josh and I started giving our kids an allowance.  Now, don't laugh at the amount, it's the lessons that matters, right?  Right.

We give Areyna and Zeke $1 in dimes every month.  Go ahead and get your giggles out...

Okay, we have implemented the "envelope system" with the kids.  I know my parents taught me this at a young age and I am pretty sure that Josh's parents did this as well for them.  Now, I wasn't the best at the envelope system growing up.  It was WAY too easy to "transfer" money between "accounts", if you know what I mean.  But enough about me, let's focus on my kids shall we:)

We went out to the store together at the beginning of the fall and they picked out a filing box that would be their "bank".  We then made envelopes for the following to put in each of their boxes:  "Tithe", "Savings", "Gifts" and "Spending".  Every "payday" we sit down and count out their money and put 1 dime in the tithe, savings and gifts envelopes and the rest in spending.

A couple of weeks ago I was running errands with Zeke and Areyna and I promised them a walk through the toy section.  They know that when we do this they are not allowed to beg me for toys or throw down an attitude because we aren't going to buy them something.  But this day, they both found things in the store that they had been eyeing for quite some time.  They both asked at one point if we could get it, and as usual, I told them that they could save their money for it and when they had enough, we could certainly come and get their desired toys.  They didn't put up a fuss or complain about not being able to get it right away...

I knew that a "payday" had gone by and I had yet to divy out their funds.  So, when we got home I told them it was "payday".  They were SO excited as they ran to go get their little bank boxes.  After they divided out their money in their envelopes we decided to count the money that they had been saving up in their "spending" envelope.  They always talk about what they want to buy, but then forget about it until the next payday so they hadn't spend any money yet.

I remembered how much each of their desired toys cost from the store and we figured that they had each saved enough money to make the purchase.  (We added a little of their Christmas money to make up the difference).  They were THRILLED!

So, we went to Target, found the toy they had set their hearts on, found a Christmas present they could buy for Micaiah together with their "gift" money and went to check out.  

I made sure to preface our purchase with "We've got a lot of change for you today:)"

Our cashier was more than kind as she counted out their money, and the people behind us in line cheered for them as they waited patiently to receive the toys that they had been saving for.

Both Areyna and Zeke have been so thankful and grateful for these specific toys.  They play with them DAILY and tell us how much they love their new toys.  I think they value them because they were able to buy it themselves.  They worked hard for them.

I'd love to know how you teach money issues to your children!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

It Doesn't Always Come Naturally

I was having a conversation with a friend a few weeks ago and she started going on and on about how wonderful of a mom I was and how naturally it came and how patient I was and how easy I made it look.  She went on and on, and then she said, "I don't think I'll ever be able to do it."

It was then that I had to stop her in her tracks.  First of all, there is that ugly comparison monster rearing its head again.  Remember, anyone can make their lives look easy and good for an hour or two at a time while they are in public or with a few keystrokes on a keyboard.  That is the first problem we as women often tend to make.  Oh, don't get me wrong, I am so guilty of this and pray against comparison almost daily!  But I know that this unhealthy comparison can lead to bitterness and resentment.  Can you tell I'm a little passionate about this topic, ha!

Anyway, then I realized the next problem.  We live in a society where moms are supposed to have it all together.  Where you pop out a baby and are at church the very next Sunday going on with life as usual.  You bring the baby home from the hospital and being a mom just comes naturally.

But, let me let you in on a secret.  Being a mom doesn't always come naturally to me!  Nope.  As a matter of fact,  I never really even wanted to have kids when I was younger.  Sure, I played "house" growing up, but I was just never one of those kids who loved babies.  I hated baby sitting, keeping the nursery was only a benefit because I didn't have to sit through boring sermons and I would dodge pretty much anything else dealing with kids.  I didn't know what to do with them.  They never really liked me or gravitated toward me...and that was fine.

But then I got "the baby bug".  I mean, who doesn't get "the baby bug" in seminary housing with all the little families all around and cute babies coming home.  It was then that we decided to start our own family.  Now, here is where you need to read carefully.  I LOVE BEING A MOM!  Did you read that?  Just in case you are now painting the wrong picture of me in your mind.  I DO love being a mom.  It just isn't something that is natural for me.  

After I had Areyna, our first baby, it was quite a transition for me to stay at home.  I absolutely LOVE being a stay-at-home mom and wouldn't trade it for the world, but it just didn't feel natural.  I am pretty driven when it comes to tasks and work and when I couldn't poor myself into a job it just felt...weird.  Fast forward a few years later.  When the kids ask me to play with them I'm not like, "Yippee, I get to brush Barbie's hair or build another train track!"  On the contrary, I just enjoy being with my kids, but I do have to consciously shut my mind off of my to-do list to quiet my heart long enough to just sit with them while they play.  That's usually how it goes around this house anyway...they ask me to play but usually just want me down with them to watch them:)

So, don't go around saying, "I'll never be as a good of a mom as _____________________ is", because that will get you nowhere.  You may have to work a little harder at it, but the Lord always gives us what we need when we need it.  Can I get an "AMEN"?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Not Me Monday

Josh and I would never switch the lock on the kid's bedroom door, so as to eliminate the ongoing temptation the kids seem to have to keep getting out of their room during times that they shouldn't.
Nope, not us!
We'd never do something as mean as that!
Because if we did, I might go in their room one day and shut the door behind me, only to find that I had locked myself in.  And that would NEVER happen to me!
Nope, not me!

I am a very efficient worker.  I have a hard time settling down and relaxing.  This is true. REALLY, it is!
And since I am so efficient I am always looking for little things to get done to really make good use of my time.
So, if I see that the dishwasher is full of dishes I am going to unload that dishwasher if I know that I have a free couple of minutes.
And, since I am SO efficient, I would always check to make sure that the dishwasher full of dishes is in fact, full of DIRTY dishes.
Yup, I am just good like that.
I would never unload a dishwasher full of dirty dishes.
Nope, not me!

Potty talk is always a private thing for our family.

So, when we stop at a rest area, Zeke would never give a play-by-play of how his poopie was coming.  You know, like, "I'm not done yet, mommy.  Poopie is still comin'!"  and "I still feel it coming out" and I just pooted (heehee)" and "I just pooted AGAIN!" and "I'm almost done poopin' now mommy, I just have to wipe my bootie...".
Nope, not my son!
Especially after two complete strangers walk in the bathroom and start giggling in their stalls.  That would be too embarrassing.
Nope, not Zeke.

And since our family always keeps things like that to ourselves...

Areyna's ears would never be so clogged up on the airplane that she would literally yell out, thinking that she was just whisperingevery time she pooted or had to poop.
Nope, not my daughter!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Facts For Friday

These aren't necessarily "Fun Facts" today, but facts none-the-less

1 - Areyna and I flew into Colorado last night for my Grandmother's funeral.  She was exactly one week shy of her 89th birthday.

2 - When my family gets together for funerals...we know how to have a good time=)  See, my Grandfather was a Funeral Director and my mom grew up knowing that death was a normal life occurrence, but that, as a believer, it wasn't the end.  With that in mind, we take time to grieve, but then take time to enjoy each other as a family, knowing that out time here on earth is precious and that we don't ever get to have time together.  For instance, my cousin Becky, hasn't seen Areyna since she was less than a year old!

3 - Speaking of my cousin, Becky, every time I hear Areyna's laugh it reminds me of my cousin.  That sweet laugh of my daughter brings me back to my childhood memories of playing house and orphan with Becky.  I'm telling you, their laugh is exactly the same!

4 - Speaking of Funeral Director...since my mom's dad was a funeral director, she grew up in a Funeral home, literally.  They LIVED in a funeral home.  As a matter of fact, her first car was an Edsel Hearse.  Pretty cool, huh:)

5 - My Nana was a godly woman who loved her family and ran her race well.  She was ready to go and she gets to spend this Christmas with Christ!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Lessons From The Classroom - Snow Day

Last Saturday we had a snow day.  Yes, Raleigh, NC was covered in snow...andthe kids were giddy with excitement as it floated down to the ground.  It was so nice to be able to be at home for a snow day with nowhere to go.  You might remember my bad attitude disappointment last year after missing all of our snow at home because we were traveling so much.  Oh well:)

Anyway, after several minutes of simply admiring the events that were unfolding outside Areyna ran and got all bundled up from head to toe and then asked for a black sheet of paper.  I immediately knew exactly what she was doing.

We have this book called The Magic School Bus Lost in the Snow.  The teacher, Miss Frizzle explains to her class all about the different shapes of snowflakes and where snow and ice crystals come from.  The last page of the book shows a picture of the kids holding black pieces of construction paper out of their classroom windows so they can examine the differences between the snow flakes.

So, that is exactly what we did.  Then we came in and sipped on hot chocolate and warmed up in front of the fire.  It was such a great day!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Story In Pictures - String Party 2010

We did it again.
The Annual String Party, that is:)

Oh, the anticipation was almost unbearable...

...but it was SOOOO worth it!

I'd say our annual String Party was a success this year!
I think the only reason we don't have more excitement from Zeke
was because I made him stop playing with his treasures to take a picture:)