Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The big bad wolf and the 3 little pigs

I have a new version of this story. I am not the neatest of people - I tend to move from one thing to the next and not really care what I leave in my wake. I eventually clean things up and I am not a pack rat but having things "just so" is not very high on my priority list. Unfortunately I think I bred this into my children. Like little chicks (or little piggies) they are following right in their mother's footsteps.

So here we are - the three little pigs - going about our day with smiles on our faces (and messes in every corner) when suddenly the very neat and tidy wolf comes in from his home office. He takes one look around and with a huff and a puff questions what in the world we have been doing all day. It is then that the piggies hop to it and start tidying things up (but not without a few complaints from the little piggies).

I feel bad for the wolf. He works so hard all day and all he really wants is a clean house - not much more than that. I am not quite sure why it is so hard to comply with this request. I could blame my own mother - I followed in her footsteps and my poor father would come home from work and all he wanted was a clean house too - but with 8 children running around that was almost an impossibility. I wont blame her though - I take complete responsibility for my actions. This is my New Year's resolution. Try to re-program myself and my children to leave a place in proper order. Wish me luck - 41 years of programming is hard to undo.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Morning

The first look at the tree.

Have you ever seen someone so excited about socks?

Double snuggies

Jack - jumping up and down and crying at the same time because he got a cell phone.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

We went to church last night and I just loved our priest's homily. We have had a lot of rain here lately and he mentioned how most of us have been going about our business getting ready for Christmas when many people woke up one morning to massive amounts of mud. Just like in life - we sometimes are confronted with mud. Annoying or frustrating ......or devastating mud. It is dirty and ugly and not easy to avoid. He reminded us that we ALL have moments with mud in our lives but we also have someone with us to help us deal with it. How wonderful to know that we are never alone. Christmas takes that sometimes seemingly unreachable God and makes Him this very accessible beautiful and perfect baby. God reached out His hand - He let us see it - He only wants us to grab hold and trust.

I hope your Christmas is full of trust and faith and love. I hope this next year you find your path free of mud. I hope every minute of every day feels like a miracle and a chance to do amazing things. Merry Christmas my friends - I am unbelievably thankful for every one of you.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

D Day

One year ago today my life changed forever. The lives of my family were changed forever. The reality of this past year will fade - especially for everyone outside of my house. Life will go on and other things will happen - on both sides of the scale. I think back on the person I was a year ago and I am so thankful for the person I am today. Gifts are wrapped up in funny packages sometimes. I hope my children will look at life with new vigor and courage. I hope they love, and love strong. I hope we all remember to embrace the now and be thankful for every moment. Once again I am thankful for all of you - I have learned through this last year not to be timid with love. If I see you - be ready for me to hug you - that is just the way life is now. I am thankful for my amazing husband who has not only loved me through this incredibly hard journey but has also embraced the "new" me. I didn't know a year ago that God was giving me an incredible gift but I knew he would be with me no matter what happened. He walks with all of us and Christmas reminds us of that.

Monday, December 20, 2010


There is something about dressing up and going out that makes me feel good. Don't get me wrong - I like staying home in my jammies too - but when everything comes together nicely it feels special. In these parts we rarely dress up - we are more inclined to wear jeans and a fun top to parties - but once a year I am lucky enough to get invited to a dressy event and this year I felt like celebrating a LOT. I was with some friends when I bought this dress and one of them told me I looked "alive". That was all it took - I had to have it. It represents how I feel - alive. And not just alive.... ALIVE!!!! I was probably a bit over dressed but I didn't care. The dress looks like a present - God gave me this life and the best gift of all is just being here. I may not dress like this every day - but this is how I feel every.... single ...... day. Don't be afraid to get out your "special" shoes or the good china. Live. And live well.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


This past weekend I went with some girlfriends down to LA to shop for Christmas. Because we have very limited shopping around here it was fun to spend a couple of days just walking around shops and malls with eyes wide and a look of awe on our faces. We were also able to meet up with our wonderful friend Julie who moved away a few years ago. The husbands stayed with the kids and for once everything went very smoothly (no one was sick etc). I had a wonderful time enjoying new restaurants and scenery but mostly I enjoyed my friends. We had a very nice surprise on the way home. We were stuck in traffic for hours and to make the time go faster my dear friend Joy pulled out a manuscript she had been working on. It was called "A year in the life of the Village". You see we call our little group "the village" for many reasons - you will have to read the book to find out more. We laughed and cried as she recalled the events of this past year. I was not the only one with struggles this year - we were all tested - our friendships and our faith were tested. Fortunately we have all become stronger in both. Joy is such a gifted writer and to hear things from her perspective was a wonderful window into her world. She changed all of our names so it almost sounded like we were hearing a story about other people. I can't wait for her to finish it. I know our lives will always be connected. I have a feeling we may not all live near each other forever but the thread that binds us is strong and will hold true.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


I am a kid again. In the last few years I have had a hard time getting into the spirit of Christmas. The whole gift giving dilemma - the busyness of parties and social gatherings - the constant eating. There is nothing like the thought of a short life to get you to appreciate all of the little things. I feel like a 5 year old again. Filled with anticipation. I am loving the smell of the tree - the beauty of the ornaments. I like that I know all of the words to the Christmas songs when I turn on the radio. I love the cozy fire, a warm sweater and the Christmas lights on our street.


The celebration of Christ's birth.

The offer of a second chance.

I know all about second chances. God has given me (and continues to give me) second chances and for that I will celebrate. I will celebrate His incredible love for us all. I will celebrate His unimaginable gift. When I watch my children's faces Christmas morning I will know He is watching all of our faces - and I hope on my face He can see immense gratitude.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Butts and Bellies

So at some point over this last year I seem to have lost my butt. I am not sure exactly when it happened. I noticed it awhile ago when my pants were not quite fitting right. I do have a theory of where it went though.... I think it migrated to my belly. I now have a flat butt and a round belly....

I would like to blame menopause and Tamoxifen but I am hoping it is just due to the lack of exercise and too many cookies.

I will keep you informed as to if I can remedy the situation. I hope it is not God playing with me because I coveted my dear friend Suzanne's butt for so long..... hmmmm.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Just a Dream

I have found lately that this past year sometimes feels like a dream. Did it really happen? The hard edges have worn off already and when I remind myself of what we all went through I am surprised. Nine hour surgery... what? Seriously? Days where I couldn't get off of the couch? I didn't really do that did I? My children scared half out of their wits? - no way. Sometimes it just feels like I decided to cut my hair really (REALLY) short and eat a whole bunch of cookies. As I look back it certainly was no more than a hiccup. When I started the "hiccup" blog I was hoping it would live up to its name but now I can look back and say with certainty that life does carry on. I just have a whole lotta dear friends now :)