Tuesday, December 31, 2013

UNclever : words from an unmotivated mom

I believe that I have taken the longest blog hiatus since the birth of my blog on November 3, 2007.

But we've had a lot going on:)

We did the whole fake Christmas thing in VA with Josh's family.

Then we did the whole real Christmas thing at our home as we brought in the flu together.
My kid's have never watched so much TV in their lives!  When everyone is down for the count with not even enough motivation to get up for meals we sit...and watch another movie.  When Josh and I sat down, after putting all the sickies in bed for the night, we decided that we were so over SuperHero Squad and The Littlest PetShop and opted for our default show.  It took me 3 1/2 lines of "recently watched" shows to find ours.  THAT's how much TV the kids watched that day.
Awful parenting? Maybe
Feeling guilty? Absolutely NOT!

As soon as we were fever-free we headed down to do another fake Christmas thing with my family and participate in the Annual String Party festivities.

Then I started getting sick...again...awesome.

Out of all the fun we had I got nary a photo to capture any of it.

There's always next year right?
And that next year begins in just a few hours!

Here's to a brand new year with more intentionality and (hopefully) less sickness.
Happy New Year ya'll!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Words Worth Remembering

Cai:"Will you inside for this out, mom?"
translation: will you turn my shirt right side out?


Alethia:"I feel Jesus in our house."


Rainy:"Look mom, she's wearing a turtle shell too!"
aka-turtle NECK


Me:"Zeke, I know you are excited to go to your sleepover, but go play until it's time to go."
Zeke:"Ooh, good idea!  Let me go get something really quick first."
Cai:"Come oooooonnnnn Zeke, hurry up, I'm gonna miss you."


Cai:"Why did God make us to bite each other?"
Me:"Well, we have to be able to bite so we can eat, but he also gave us a choice as to how we use the teeth and mouth he gave us."
Cai:"I think God has a button to make us do something like that."


Cai:"My nose can't breathe:("


while getting ready for breakfast
Cai:"Mom, can you help me get my jacket on?"
Mom:"Why? Where are you going?"
Cai:"I want to go outside and give my money to a poor guy."


Zeke:"Ooh, look mom, a seed!  Now we can plant it to grow some more fish!"
Me:"Ummm, that's garlic buddy...and you can't GROW fish with a seed."
Rainy laughing hysterically!


Cai:"What if we had LOTS of these kind a hands?"
Me:"What would you do with more hands?"
Cai:"We can pick up LOTS of toys!"


Cai talking about Ms. Beverly:"Why does she always call me angel?"


while working out with Insanity videos:
Cai:"Dad! Wemembow, don't look at the go-walls (ie-girls) because they are dwessed bad!"


Cai:"What's his name?"
Me:"Mr. Dave."
Cai:"What's his pretend name?"
Cai:"His PRETEND name!"
~still don't understand what he was asking here:)~


Cai:"Zeke, I flatted my gum 'cause I didn't want mommy to squwubble it."
Zeke:"Squwubble?! What?!"
Cai (clearly offended):"You don't even KNOW, Zeke!"


Zeke (dressed up as Superman):"You know you aren't a real superhero. You're just a toy."
Cai (dressed up as Buzz Lightyear):"I am NOT a toy! Zeeeeeekeeee, I am NOT just a toy!!!"

Thursday, December 19, 2013


My time with the Lord has lead me through II Kings over the past week or so.  As I've been reading it is sad to see all the foolish choices the leadership of Israel took.  You can see the downward spiral of their corrupted hearts.

But after generations and generations of Kings leading their people away from the Lord you will finally see a King who breaks those generational curses and decides to turn toward God.  To lead the people toward the one true King.

But as soon as you get relief in a verse reading, "and he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord", the very next sentence is "Nevertheless, the high places were not removed"!

You cannot expect to lead your family by just "doing right in the eyes of the Lord".  You must get rid of those "high places" that tend to grab your heart in moments of weakness.  You must destroy the temptations so there isn't the option to run toward them.

Don't be a cowardly King, unwilling to make those hard decisions to destroy the high places around your family because you fear the backlash of your people (or your family), or because you want something to hold onto "just in case" God doesn't come through.

Be the "King" God has made you to be.  Lead your family.  Destroy the high places, whatever they may be, in order to give your WHOLE heart to the Lord.

I don't want a "nevertheless" after my name.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Lessons I Learned From The Other Mama In The House

Alethia is a nurturer at heart.

She is so patient with Jude.  She will stop what she is doing to help him unstick the stroller wheel from under the kitchen chairs.  She runs to find his bubby when he is sleepy or hurt.
She is so kind to him.  She genuinely loves him and wants what is best for him.  She practically begs me to change his diapers and feed him his applesauce and clean him up after meals.  She finds JOY in the mundane tasks of keeping up with a baby and filling his emotional love tank.

She is always aware of his needs.  Constantly looking out for his wellbeing.  She can hear his cry from a mile away and knows when he wants to get out of the swing or when he is stuck in the closet (ahem...).

Sometimes, okay maybe most of the time, I feel hurried by life.  Hurry up and get in the car.  Hurry up and walk in the door.  Hurry up and eat.  Hurry up and walk.  Hurry up, hurry up, hurry up.  In fact, I've caught myself being impatient with Alethia as she lavishes unlimited attention (which consumes time) to her siblings, especially Jude.

But if I can just stop for a second and take my daughter's cue, the one waiting patiently, loving unconditionally, embracing her role as "helper" and "big sister" I could most certainly learn a lot about my own role that God has given me.

Alethia is going to be a great mama, and she's starting by helping her own mama to be a better mama.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Nothing But The Truth

Our neighbor, Mr. Ed, wasn't doing so well a few weeks ago.  We actually thought we were going to lose him for a while.  While Areyna prayed for healing every night and regained eye sight, Zeke prayed for his elderly wife, Lois, that she wouldn't be sad and lonely while he was in the hospital.  I love seeing the different perspectives my kids see in the prayers we lift up.  Ed made it home almost 2 weeks ago and is doing just fine.  We are only moving shadows to him, but he recognizes our voices.  The kids were SO excited to make cards, necklaces and wrap up (with a whole roll of athletic tape, BTW) their favorite candies from the Rolesville Christmas parade to gift to them.  They even wanted to sing Christmas carols to them:-)

We made the long trek from our yard to theirs and knocked on their door.  We sang our song and gifted our gifts and then Lois invited us in.  We sat down and caught up with them.  Our kids were full of questions, but mainly Cai was concerned about their gift saying, "Can I open it for them?  They are Ooooolllld!".  Oh Cai-bo, the boy who could only speak truth.  He hides nothing:)  He also made a few other comments that made me giggle under my breathe.  I'm sure glad they didn't have their hearing aids in;)

Rainy and Zeke have been tracked out for almost 2 weeks and, although the first few days added a handful of gray hairs on my head were a bit of a transition we made it to the other side and we have mostly been enjoying our time together.  I, Tasha Via, have been a Christmas crafting machine!  I only boast because the thought of whittling scissors, glue and paint typically send me over the edge with all the littles.  It's been fun to see what we can create and what fun ways we can pass the time.  We are completely out of printer paper ~ add that to our Christmas list!

You can find me on Pinterest, if you dare!, and see some of the ideas we have brought to life.

I got to play the Trans-Siberian's, "Wizards in Winter" with our incredible band at Journey yesterday.  It was SO much fun.  We've got another fun opener for next week too!

It must have taken it's tole on my brain though.  I had to run out to the store for some milk and bread, I know, the essentials right!  We got all done bagging it up and then the cashier and I were left just staring at each other.  I'm thinking, "what in the world is he waiting on? I just need my receipt...".  He just kept looking around the store and then at me, not saying a word.  Finally I realized that we were waiting on ME!  I hadn't even paid for the groceries yet.  I don't know WHY he didn't just let me have them for free last night.  Doesn't he know it was all going to feed hungry children, ha!

Well, this year has come and gone and, well, we were a little lazy in the Christmas Card department.

So from all of us to all of you...

Happy Monday ya'll!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Words Worth Remembering

Cai:"One time Rainy ate a leaf on the trampoline and she said it tasted like chipth."


Me:"Cai, is this shirt yours or Zeke's?"
Cai:"It's Zeke's, not mine yet.  I need to grow out of me so I can have it."


Cai:"Zeke, you can't drink that!!!!!  There's germs! I SEE them!"


Me:"Alethia, why don't you go grab your coat?"
Alethia:"I don't want it. It's not cold outside."
Me:"But you were just saying how cold you were?"
Alethia:"Well I changed my mind.  I like to change my mind every day."


Alethia:"Oh, THERE's the cotton bombs."
(aka - cotton BALLS)


Alethia:"My favorite ones are the frosted flakes!"
(aka - snow flakes)


Cai:"...and God, pwease help us to have everything we need for daddy to make donuts tomorrow..."


Cai: while in the bathtub,"wha, what is THIS doing in here?! *sigh* Some kinda kid must've thwone this in here *sigh*."


Zeke:"Mom, can you come give us hugs and kisses?"
Me:"Boys, I ALREADY gave you hugs and kisses, now go get in bed."
Cai:"But you can aaaalllways give us MORE hugs and kisses!"

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Story In Pictures ~ CCGDCAWKSBBE

We decided to invite some new friends of ours to our 

2nd annual
Girls vs. Boys
Colony (+ friends)-Christmas-Gingerbread(house)-Decorating-Create-A-Wonderland-Kick-Some-Butt-Bottom- EXTRAVAGANZA!

Meet Team 1
Alethia, Hannah and Jenn

Meet Team2
Cai, JJ, Zeke and Josh

Meet Team 3
Jude and Jarrett
(Jarrett didn't have a very happy heart as his teammate continued to EAT their progress:-)

Meet Team 4
Rainy and Kendall

Everyone is a winner here in the Colony household...
but there must be a winner!
(and unfortunately lots of losers)

Fun was had by all
and the competition was fierce.

The winner that America has chosen this year iiiiiisssssss:
the enthusiastic Team 4!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Why We Will ALWAYS Fight For Family Devotions

I just got sent to the cozy couch by my 8-year-old daughter.

Yup, I sure did.

I was touchy and on edge after a long day of party hopping between class track-out-end-of-year-christmas-celebrations and cranky kids, not to mention my own emotional exhaustion.

But it was family devotion time and feelings are to be put aside for a time as we bask in God's greatness.  Right?  RIGHT?!

Josh was sharing a very eloquent Christmas-themed thought with a focus on "peace", of all things.

But all I could hear was Zeke repeating a section of random tunage to sing over...and over and over, while Areyna repeatedly asks, through gritted teeth, "Zeeeke, PLEASE STOP!"  Then there is the 4-year-old crying over wanting the RED scissors for the craft segment, not the blue ones he had been given, a 5-year old climbing all over the table (that girl CANNOT hold still)  and a 1-year-old crashing his play car into the wall.

The epitome of peace, ha!

My irritation must have shown because Rainy looked and me and said, "Mom, go take a break."  Not in a disrespectful way, but in an I-know-you-need-to-get-away-from-us-for-a-breather-before-there-ends-up-being-a-Colony-MINUS-one kind of way.

I ran back to my room, slammed the door and sat on the cozy couch glaring at the wall.

No, not really, but I kinda felt like doing that:)

As I sat there cooling off I could hear Josh leading the kids in "Silent Night"and finally some cooperation as the lesson continued and the point was made.

Sometimes, actually a lot of times, our family devotion times look like this.  Yes, sometimes we have those rare moments where one or more of the kid's hearts is grabbed by the Spirit and they are curious and ask questions and a long, heart-to-heart discussion will follow, but more often than not we are separating siblings who are kicking each other or fighting over highlighters.

But see, to us, it's not about the perfectly behaved children who sit around in a circle taking in every story and deep meaning of Christ we try to share.  It's about the seeds that are being planted.  It's about creating an environment where we can intentionally pour into our kids about what the Lord has taught us.

We will always fight to keep devotions a priority in our family, even if it means that there will be fighting through it.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Financially Obese

This season brings out the best and the worst in us, doesn't it?

We eat too much.
We spend too much.
We commit too much.

And then, just like that, it's all over, and what do we have to show for it?

A lot of times we come out more stressed as we wade through the aftermath of debt and strained relationships.

Just like a person who struggles with obesity.  It is a lifestyle (most of the time) of bad habits and a lack of self control.  The need for food has a hold on every area.

A person who spends more than their budget allows is financially obese.  Spending has become a lifestyle of bad habits and a lack of self control.  The need for "stuff" has a hold on every area.

This causes dissension, dissatisfaction and conflict in relationships, especially on marriages.

Don't wait until the new year to commit to beginning a diet for debt.

"Yet true religion with contentment is itself great wealth.
After all, we didn't bring anything with us when we
came into the world, and we certainly cannot carry
anything with us when we die."
I Timothy 6:6-7

Monday, December 2, 2013

Shocking, I Know

Rainy and Zeke only have 3 days left until they track out for Christmas!  I can't believe it's already that time.

We are quickly starting our own family traditions.  One of them is stopping at a tree farm on the way home from my parent's house after Thanksgiving and cutting down a tree.  We all frolicked in the woods for over an hour as we looked for the perfect one.
Wide-eyed Jude

You may be wondering where I get my fashionista look.  Seriously though, I really have been asked quite often where I shop since I am so little.  The answer may surprise you, but I buy the majority of my clothes in the little girls clearance section.  Yup.  You can't beat a $6 pair of jeans (that have an adjustable waste!).  Just make sure that they aren't too bedazzled, ha!

My favorite way to cook chicken these days is on my trusty ol' George Foreman Grill.

The Colony easily goes through 5 boxes of cereal a week and about a half a bag of oatmeal and a couple dozen eggs.  Yes, our grocery budget is growing just as quickly as the kids are these days.

I spoke for a women's class a few weeks ago and the leader of the class showed THIS VIDEO.  Oh.My.Goodness.  It is a modern day reenactment of the story of Hosea.  There are 6 short video clips in all.  Go grab a box of tissues and get comfortable.  They are a must-see.

The music from the films are beautifully written by a band called Olafur Arnald.  It is now one of my favorites.

Happy December Monday ya'll!