Friday, April 29, 2016

On organizing the (emotional) Mess!

Quick Take Friday: On organizing the (emotional) mess!

#1: Organize
One of my friends, Ellen, has a jar filled with virtues, (written on paper). Around New Year's, she offers to pick a virtue for you and message it to you. This year, I got "Organize". Which is something I really need. Originally, I had this idea that "organize" was going to be a year of decluttering and,  (God Willing), the ability to FINALLY figure out how to print and scrapbook/put into albums the thousands of pictures I have in manila envelopes, on memory cards, and stored on my computer. Being the memory keeper is important to me and it's a sore spot for me that I can't seem to figure out how to start organizing all of these photos!  Four months into 2016, and I'm thinking God has more in mind. (Doesn't He always..and yet, I'm still surprised every.single.time!)

#2: How to Reconfigure and Organize Life
Looking for tips?, too! I think step one is accepting that you have an organizing problem. Trying to balance life is a continual see-saw battle!

Battle cartoons, Battle cartoon, funny, Battle picture, Battle pictures, Battle image, Battle images, Battle illustration, Battle illustrations

#3: Acknowledge the Un-Organization in Your Life
I've been a little lost lately.
Maybe more than a little.
I think it has a lot to do with turning 40 and being at a real cross roads of change in life. Some of the other smaller "issues" in life that were themselves manageable, all of a sudden morphed into much less manageable weights that make some days hard to function through normally.

You know those times when you think of all the things that have to be done, you calculate the time it will most likely take to do it, and you realize that even if you worked without sleeping for days that you could probably STILL not be able to finish it all? And you just want to give up before you even start?

There have been quite a few days like that.

Bill Watterson

#4: "Focus Danielson"
I'm picking a couple of areas to start on because a complete overhaul would just be too overwhelming! So...I think I'm going to focus first on getting our financial life more organized AND trying to add date nights into our month. That sounds counterproductive, doesn't it?!? While going out for dinner occasionally is a nice treat, I'm thinking that our couple time will be going for walks and grocery shopping together on Friday nights. (That counts, right?!?) AND...I need to come up with a plan to tackle the picture backlog problem and schedule time to implement it!

#5:  Just Start Somewhere
I know for myself, I want it to be the perfect scenario with the perfect plan mapped out from a-z before I even start something, That's all well and good, but some projects are so overwhelming that you just have to jump in and start somewhere. In the words of Maria Von Trapp, "Let's start at the very beginning... a very good place to start." (and not worry about how long it will take to get to the end!) All forward progress counts!

#6: St. Catherine of Siena
On a completely different note, today is the feast day of St. Catherine of Siena! She is one of my favorite saints! She was a total "bad butt"! Small but powerful! 

#7: He Said/She Said
Jay: (talking to Kate) Hi, honey, how was your day?
Kate: I went to the doctors and got a shot and it really hurt! Then, mommy took me out for lunch and we had chicken hands.
Jay: Do you mean chicken feet?
Kate: No. Wait a minute. I mean chicken fingers...we had chicken fingers!

Happy Weekend!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Journeys Into The World Of A Teenager!

Birthdays are a frequent occurrence when you have a big family....but it's an extra special day when you get a new teenager in the house!

1. Not Our First Rodeo
Ellen is our 6th teenager! Of course, her three oldest brothers have wandered into the land of young adulthood..(shudder)..., so we only have 3 teenagers in the house right now. "ONLY 3"...seems kind of a funny thing today. We've done 4 teenagers in the house at one point, so 3 should be easy...Right?!?

2. Those Eyes!
Ellie has the biggest, bluest eyes out of all our children. When she was a baby, those big, blueberry blue eyes drew all the older ladies over to my shopping cart whenever we were out in public!

Considering Jay and I both have brown eyes, recessive genes made an appearance quite a bit in our family!  Mike had blue eyes until he was 12 and they changed into more of a green color. Andrew and Peter both had blue eyes until they were two and then they turned to hazel.  Ellie and Kate have blue eyes, although Ellie's are the truest blue. 

Ellie was SO excited that Kate had blue eyes! Ellie told us after Kate was born that she prayed and prayed for a baby sister with blue eyes just like her. So sweet!
Our very own Cindy Lou Hoo!

#3: Speaking of Sweet...
Ellie is one of the sweetest people I know! If I had to pick one word to describe her, "sweet" would be the one! Ellie has such a big heart. She loves and gives with all she has. Her big heart is right there in the open...which makes her a very sensitive person. Her personality is a lot like Jay's Mom. 

The "sweet ones" at Ellie's Kindergarten graduation

#4: Except On The Court...
One place Ellie is NOT sweet is on the basketball court! Basketball suits her well since she is 5'7" at 13 and the doctor thinks she still has several inches to go! It's good to be tall. :) 

Bending over so she doesn't tower over everyone!

#5: Daddy's Girl
Ellen is definitely a Daddy's Girl! She always has been! All of the girls have Jay wrapped around their fingers! 
Always a Daddy's Girl!

#6: The Little Sister, Big Sister, & Middle Child
Ellie is our true middle child. She's not as old as the "big kids", the little kids are quite a bit younger than her(Luke is 6 years younger, Kate is 8 years younger), and because Peter's cognitive/emotional age is so much younger because of his disability, Ellie is stuck in the middle!  Sometimes the older kids act more like parents than siblings...and no one wants that many parents!

In the past year, I've noticed a really big difference in Ellie's relationship with most of her older siblings. She has definitely started to be more connected to the big kids...especially Sarah. It's really special to see them together...or hear them talking and giggling in the bedroom...during their frequent "girl time". I hope they will always be close!

Of course, Ellie is frequently sought after by Kate and Luke, too! She is great with them. Kate loves to play "dollies" with her and both Luke and Kate love to play Legos with her. Ellie is "super sister"...she learned well from her older "super sister"!(Well done, Padawan!)


#7: Happy 13th Birthday, Ellie!
We love you bunches and can't imagine life without you! :)