Sunday, January 20, 2013

Parenting is challenging

Yep, these are my children, and indeed they are crazy!  They are fun loving and spirited.  They are loud with laughter so very often.  They are smart and sweet (and show both sweet and smart 97% of the time).  I love being a mom!  Seriously, I do.  Being a mom is something that I prayed for and God really did answer that prayer.  For each of my 4 blessings I am so very grateful.   However, there are weeks like this last one where they are a handful.  I wonder sometimes if it is the weather, their exhaustion due to lack of sleep, or if it is their diet, or all these things combined like the Bermuda Triangle.  This was one of those weeks that no matter what I prepared for them to eat it wasn't right.  What I provided for them to wear -they didn't want it.     They didn't want to go to bed when asked.  They didn't want to get up when it was time.  They didn't want to do their chores (and seriously they each have like one it isn't like they are my slaves or whatever).  They didn't even want to put their own things away.  I never asked any of them this week to put away anything that belonged to someone else, just to put their blankets in their rooms or put their shoes in the closet or whatever.  They wanted to be by my side, in my bed, in the kitchen, in my car- wherever I was they were, but they didn't want to do the things that I was requesting of them.  Weeks like this puzzle me. Multiply the children and you multiply the grumpy, grouchy and whiny cries that come from their mouths. Today at lunch I actually held up my hands in the stop position and said the words, "everyone wait".  I realized that I had one child tapping my shoulder saying, "mom, mom, hey  mom." while there were two others who were in the midst of talking to me about two different things.  My ears and brain had had enough.    When all that is within me wants to scream/yell enough already you people need to get control of yourselves, I remember that I am the one in charge and I know what is best for them.  I have to calm my spirit and my soul in order to know what to provide for them.  In order for me to calm my spirit I often turn to music (it soothes the savage  beast you know)  I found myself this morning in dire need of quiet and calm.  I needed that quiet and calm to remind myself that there are others who would love to have the chaos of the Babcock home. Their lives have taken turns that caused them to hurt whether through the illness or the death of their children, or divorce and so they have seasons where they are without their children or whatever... they don't have what I have.  I try to think of things like that when I am tired of having little hands touching me constantly. I try to remember those people when there are interruptions during a show I might be watching, or a book I might be trying to read, or even the visit to the bathroom.  So on the way home with two in the car with me I turned on the radio and began to allow the music to wash over me as I have done so many times before.  No such luck as the 2 that were with me argued all the way home.  Once home all 4 of them were struggling to get along. It took a good 2 hours to get everyone to the point where happy faces began to appear again and the creation of a big tee-shirt with the words "our get along shirt we love each other" written on it (an idea from pintrest/facebook)- and what was I doing during those 2 hours... writing this article and listening to worship music in my headphones (between breaking up fights and redirecting).  Seriously they are now all 4 getting along and being sweet to each other and haven't complained once - and so I post a video (one I might have posted before) of what I do each and every time I find myself at the point where I need God to help me through and lead me back to a calm spirit... here it is:

Thankful so very much for those who use their gift to remind me of my blessings and of The One who gave them to me!!  Peace out!

Monday, January 14, 2013

What will 2013 bring?

Sometimes I look into the faces of my children and wonder how in the world could I be so lucky.  I know many parents feel that way but seriously God gave me some pretty ones.  I look at those blue eyes that all of them have (they are all a different color of blue) and the shape of their lips, their dimples and even that little part under their nose above their top lip and think, "wow God you done good!"  2012 marked the end of "little" at our house- no more diapers- I have been changing diapers for 12 years.  I gave away all clothes for the boys that were size 5 and below and gave away all of Zoe's clothes that were 4 and below (for the most part although I have found a few here and there that need to go).  I told someone the other day that I have enjoyed for the most part watching the boys grow and change but Zoe is killing me... when I go to buy her spring clothes I will be buying size 6 clothes- I have no one in the baby/little kid section at any department store or wally world or whatever.  Where did my babies go??  So what will 2013 bring?  I don't know but one of my resolutions was to be more like Mary and store all of these things up in my heart.  So I post this picture of my kids at Thanksgiving 2012 and take a moment to thank God for the blessing of my "babies"!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Well so much for keeping up

Ok well life gets in the way and so I don't post... big deal... I can catch up- here goes nothing...
This guy is about to go to middle school!!  How crazy is that?!

This dog (Molly) joined our family and we love love love her!!

This guy is still as crazy as ever and continues to challenge us every day- he keeps us alive!

This guy loves life - the phrase live, laugh, love is built deep within his soul!

She brings balance to our world... tiny and mighty, tenacious and independent all wrapped up in pink!

The kids rocked the school year!  Mason and Cooper both made straight A's and Jaxon learned to read and was promoted to 1st grade so with regards to our move they are settled.  We have found a fantastic church home- The Branch @ Vista Ridge- we placed membership and began to serve and that has helped solidify the feelings of home here in DFW.  We just put in for the last of the "issues" to be fixed in our house before the year warrenty runs out (which is crazy to think about).  We love the community we are in and have met lots of people and are starting to "do stuff" with friends.  Each weekend as we drive to chuch we talk about how we are beginning to feel more and more settled and at home here.  We have even discussed purchasing a piece of property where we could have animals and land and stuff... who are we?!  LOL!  So... there it is the update on the family-hope you enjoyed it! 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Loving my kids

The kids and I left for Nashville for Christmas via car the week before Christmas.  I have done this in the past and have really struggled to push through the drive from San Antonio with kids by myself.  This year was a little different since we only had a ten hour drive (give or take) at least a one day drive.  As I have in the past, I had new crayons, markers, coloring books, a new game for each child for his ds/dsi, basically entertainment for the road along with snacks of all shapes, sizes and flavors that are not normally something we keep in the house.  I never tell them what I have bought... I load up the car and get it all ready and when they get in it takes a while for them to discover all the new fun stuff.  It was no different this trip.  It was however different in that this trip, Mason was big enough to hang with me in the front seat and keep me company or help me out with the other kids by reaching something they might want or need.  He didn't stay too long up front with me.  He stayed in the back with Cooper and they enjoyed vs. each other with their games.  The kids traveled really well.  They had lots to entertain them and were thankful each time I pulled out something new.  I loved hearing them laugh and color and share.  My heart was full each time I looked in the back seat and saw their little faces.  It did take more than 10 hours and as it got dark they fell asleep at the time that they would have if we had been home.  Except Mason, he crawled back up into the front seat and chatted with me and laughed and sang and spoke of how he was feeling more settled and happy.  Music to this mommy's ears I tell you.  Today I shared with someone that from the moment I knew what babies were I loved loved loved them.  I began to pray that God would allow me to know the joy of having children and as I have said He did not let me down.  While it is not always easy, I have challenged myself to take a breath and as I have said before be like Mary and charish all of these things in my heart.  These things are moments with Mason in the car when we talk, or shopping (because I am teaching him the fine art of grocery shopping).  These things are teaching Zoe how to make a salad for lunch (which she loves and requests often), or listening to her sing, dance and tell a story as she is playing with her toys.  These things are watching Cooper's entire body change when he comes into contact with any animal or baby.  These things are that Jaxon is going through a fear stage and doesn't want to sleep in his bead but will fall asleep in 2sec. in my bed and when I crawl in he is all warm and snuggly.  I am loving my kids right now and spent a lot of my time driving to Nashville thanking God for the blessing that comes through parenting my kids!

Get ready friends 2012 I am gonna be adding pics and doin' some bloggin' about these crazy blessings and I hope you my faithful followers will enjoy what is to come!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Looking back

As I reflect back over the last few years of keeping up with this blog, I have noticed that the feel of it changed from being one that reflected on my love of my babies and all things that get wrapped up with them to one of how stinky some of our life has been. I started this blog as a legacy to my kids because let's face it the more kids, the more activity, the more activity, the harder it is to remember everything both good and bad. I love my kids and the things they say and do. I want to use 2012 to restart the original intention of it. It will be filled with stories and pictures, and other stuff that will allow them to look back and see what a mess life is with 4 but what a blessing they are too me (even on the hard days). I will close 2011 by saying that I see a shift in where we are now vs. where we were earlier in the year. I am listening to the 3 boys play together with the hot wheels wall track. They are laughing and giggling together and Zoe just went to join them. While sometimes what comes out of their mouths is not always pleasant today is one of the days that my heart is filled with joy! I spent many years of my life praying that God would bless me with kids so that I could be a mother. He answered that prayer with 4 very different, unique children. I pray now that I will not fail them as a mother. I pray that 2012 will bring lots of laughter to this home through my kids and that they will know the love that I have for them! Kids, when you read this one day, please know that every single thing I did in the world and every decision I made was made with you in mind. I love you with every breath that I take and nothing you ever say or do will ever ever change that!!- Much love, Mommy.

Monday, August 8, 2011

The end of relocating

Whew... no more apartment! We were able to close on our house on July 15th and moved out of the apartment on the 16th. The house in SA now has a new owner and we are getting boxes unpacked and getting ready for school to start. Well, ok actually as I write this we are in Nashville on vacation, but we did do some shopping over the weekend during tax free time! After spending the last 4 mos in the apartment, waiting for the SA house to sell and waiting to get into a house here in Dallas, I realized that through all of this God was answering a prayer that I started praying in 2009. It was a very dark time for us. Our marriage was struggling (to say the least). We were struggling finacially. We were struggling to be on the same page parenting our children. It just seemed as if nothing was going the way it should. I began to pray that God would intervene as only He can. I prayed for finacial peace. I prayed for parenting solutions. I prayed for God's wisdom concerning my marriage. I had no idea that God would answer my prayer the way He did. There is no way financially we would have been able to prepare our house to sell had it not been for relocation. There is no way we would have been able to put any type of dent into our debt, were it not for relocation. There is no way we would be in a bigger home were it not for relocating. In the midst of frustration and trial came blessings and answers to prayer! I am so very thankful to God for being the faithful giver of so many good things! It just reminds me to stick and stay with the other prayers that I have been praying for the last few years. It reminds me to be still and know that God will answer the prayers that I pray in His timing with His way. It isn't that I didn't know because I have always been aware of prayers being answered. But, this is the first time that in the midst of utter chaoas that I have seen His mighty power bring peace to us in a way that only He can bring it. Day after day as I meet new people I can see God's hand guiding us through this relocation. I know there are more great things that will come of this. For now I will be focusing on unpacking boxes, getting the kids settled in school, and focusing on training and fundraising for the breast cancer 3 day... get ready for a post or few on that passion to find a cure!!! Until next post... God Bless!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Expectations vs relocation part 2

I promise this won't be like a preacher with those 110 lesson sermon series, (sorry if you are reading this and you are a preacher or married to a preacher or whatever), but I have been thinking -again. Yes, thinking is dangerous for me, and when I think then I have to get those thoughts out... so for those of you who check and see if I have posted anything - today is your lucky day. Part 2 of relocation has to do with the behavior of my children. I expected there to be some change of behavior. I expected that this whole relocation thing from house to middle floor apartment would be a parenting challange. I expected a change in my behavior challanged children (and there are several of them). But I was not prepared for the vast difference of my expectations and what is actually occurring. I wonder some days how many times I have said... stop running in the apartment. I wonder some days how many times I have said... stop jumping and crashing on the floor. I wonder some days if the hitting, punching, kicking, yelling, biting, total lack of respect is a part of relocation and emotions running high due to the change of location and friends etc... or if my kids have just lost their "everlovin" minds. I mean I knew after struggling for years in our marriage, that the stress that my kids were under due to the fact that their parents weren't on the same page in their parenting styles, was intense, but throw in relocating and WOW! I was not prepared for the level of yuck that comes out of their mouths. They yell at each other with such hatred in their voices. Mason, yells at Cooper who yells at Jaxon who in turn yells at Zoe. Cooper yells if anyone comes remotely close to him or in the same room (some days). Mason can't stand to be near the two little kids. Jaxon has developed this scream yell that makes our skins crawl when he does it. He also stands there and just looks at you when you tell him to do something as if to say... I hear the words that you are speaking but there is no way I am going to do what you are telling me to do unless you use some sort of force. And oh the eye rolling and door slamming!! Maybe I am just more concerned about the noise that they are making because we have neighbors both above and below us. And maybe this is normal for a move- whatever it is - in the words of Barnie Fife "we have to nip it in the bud!" "Nip it, nip it, nip it!" Sunday's lesson challanged me to examine my prayer life. Not how much I pray (because I have an ongoing conversation with God that really never has an amen to it), but more so a how I pray. Mr. Chris spoke of The Lord's Prayer and reminded us that is was not spoken of as "these are the words your should pray", but more "these words are {{how}} you pray." (Substance over style if you will) Chris reminded us that prayer is not about our performance- big fancy words etc... it is about a relationship with God. Prayer is not about informing God of what our needs or wants are (because He already knows) but about drawing together with God. Any time you have a conversation with someone especially someone you admire, love, respect - doesn't a conversation with them bring you closer together. ( umm I added that thought- and I'll add another) You know when you have a friend that knows you so well that they can almost complete a thought before you do. A friend who when they see something they know would make you laugh even if you are miles and miles away... they laugh too and call, text or facebook you to laugh at you, with you, or about you and something you did or said at some point and time. You don't have to inform them about you, they already know you or they wouldn't be trying to communicate with you. God is that way with us. He just wants to know that we see Him, are reminded of Him etc... and want to communicate with Him. {{Chris, sorry if you are reading this I hope you are not offended that I added some thoughts}} Chris also said that it is not about asking God to align His resources with what we want, but aligning our hearts and our resources with His will. We have to pray that things be "on earth as it is in Heaven." The question came up how do we do that? Hang with me I am almost to my point and will tie it in to the relocation part I promise. (told you I had been thinking) We have to get to know God in order to be able to pray and to do that we must go to The Bible... to scripture, to the life of Jesus and see what He said and did, to Heaven (thinking about it and reading about it (imagining what it is like and what it would be like to have Heaven on earth) and going of course to The Lord's Prayer. The phrase within The Lord's prayer "on earth as it is in Heaven" helps us to align our hearts with God... being bold and believing enough that it is possible that we could have Heaven here on earth is possible. Chris talked about the prhrase "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done". God's kingdom is His realm... it is where He is. His will- is His "strong desire". So if we are praying for God's will to be done then what are we praying for? Aren't we praying for God's strongest desire be wherever He is? Isn't God right here with us at all times... here on earth?! All I could think of was the peace that comes to mind when I think of Heaven. Heaven will be peace. In Heaven, there are no tornados, there are no earthquakes, there are no hurricanes, there are no addictions, there is no lonliness, there is no cancer (no breast cancer!), there is no crying, yelling, hitting, punching, disrespect, slamming of doors, complaining etc... there is just peace. If I want the peace that I think of in Heaven here on earth- I have to ask for it! I have to believe it will happen. But if my heart isn't into it or if my heart doesn't really believe it I must align my heart with the will of God our Father. If what comes out of our mouths that which is in our hearts then (and oh dear gussy, this is where I was convicted) what is in my heart. I have to be the one who patterns for my children what is in my heart and if I can't wrap my heart and {{brain}} for that matter around the relocation because somehow I allow the moving and God to stay separate in my heart - how can I expect my children to adjust? Did I just hear some of you whisper "finally she got to the point- LOL!" So... I change my heart's expectations and I begin to look for God and praying for His Will to be done at this time in our lives. If I am going to find peace, I have to be peaceful... I have to lay out my expectations for the kids in a peaceful clear way, just as Our Father laid out his expectations of our prayers. I can pray for God's will to "reign" in our hectic relocation apartment. I can pray for that peace... I can find places to go to find the resources that God has placed out there that align my heart with Him. Resources that allow Him to be the center of our home in all that we say and do. Resources that align our parenting practices with His will. To that end I found this fabulous website: Compassionate Support Christ Centered Hope. It is a website that has some amazing resources from parents who have "issues" (as we call them in our house- ADHD, depression, etc...), and for parents who have kids with "issues", but it goes beyond that. Your challanges for today... take a look at that website, and think about how you are praying. I think I have found a way to adjust my expectations and it had to come from crying out, "Father, on earth as it is in Heaven!" Thank you Mr. Chris for your timely words and God bless each of you... especially the ones who made it to the end of this post! Love you!