Blue Diamonds

I don't get to tuck my kids in bed every night, but when I do we have a sweet tradition. About a year ago, we started saying goodnight prayers.  At first, I would pray and thank God for my child, and we would pray for our family, grandparents, etc.  I did this individually with each child.  Gradually, I would have the child repeat me, and now Princess will pray own her own with minimal prompting.  Handsome still needs some help.  We primarily thank God for family members and pets.  Occasionally, we will pray for healing or to be brave.  My intention is to have them be comfortable talking to God and to learn about being thankful.

Recently, I have started asking the kids what they are thankful for.  This might have started around Thanksgiving (for obvious reasons) but we have continued it.  Of course, they needed prompting at first, and I often give an example for what I am thankful for. Usually, grandparents and Daddy top the list.   I think I may have been mentioned once.  But this is what I love the best.  I never know what they are going to say.  Last week, Handsome what thankful for orange juice.  And milk.  He is ofter thankful for dinosaurs, and last night he was specific with which ones (terrasaurs, i think.  probably not even spelling that right)  Princess is also thankful for orange juice, kittens, peanut butter, and most recently, blue diamonds.  Yes, that's right, LARGE blue diamonds, specifically.

Me too, girl.  Me too.

Ok, so the disclaimer is that I DO NOT have a blue diamond.  I can only dream.  But Princess loves watching "The Rescuers" and has seen it a million times.  She adores Penny.  My Princess likes to wear "penny tails" and wants to find the blue diamond so she can be 'dopted and have a family.  So while, I assure Princess she already has a family that loves her, she still wants to find the blue diamond.  Oh, and Princess pretends her Winnie the Pooh is Teddy. Haven't seen "The Rescuers" lately?  I can fill you in.



So there must be a seven step process with coming to terms with job hunting.  Kinda like the same process one goes through when quitting smoking or dealing with grief.

I've been through the fear-of-starting stage and I overcame that.  I made a choice to really start looking and create a resume.  I spoke to family/friends and wore everyone out.  But actually make the choice was exhilarating, liberating.  I got an emotional rush.

I think I had a sub stage or something about possibly moving. I couldn't find any good leads for a local position so I had to come up with another plan. Got hubby on board, spoke to the family, and actually drove around to possible locations to scout them out. It was fun to dream.

Suddenly, moving seemed terrifying.  Its a lot of work; plus trying to time starting a new job, selling a house, and kids school schedules seems impossible.  I spoke to a contact about a local job that might work, but it turns out she quit that facility.  And she wouldn't recommend me going in to it, it was that bad.  So while I appreciate her candor, it was disappointing.  She told stories of colleagues that can't find jobs or are spending months and also have to move.  So then I became depressed.  I don't really want to go through the stress or expense of moving, but I might really have to.  Plus, the job market is difficult and I'm in a part of the country where I still don't have a lot of contacts.  So while I have been throwing myself a pity party I've come to terms that the actual timeline of events might be messy.

So, I am also facing the choice again, how bad is it for me to really change jobs?  I really want to do something different.  I need a change.  This whole process is teaching me patience on a new level.  I can't go buy a new job, or new work environment.  I can't ask someone to buy my house and it be done the next day. This part of life is definitely a dance, and I'm unfamiliar with my partner.

Ok, that's three stages, right?  I wonder how many more before the end?  Anyone else know which stage is next?


Picture Failure

So I tried to make Christmas Cards this year.  Or last year, rather.  We had family pictures taken.


I didn't even buy any yet.  None I want to share of the family.  We did get a few cute ones of this kids, but out of 300+ pictures taken, maybe seven I would buy and share.  None were really spend-more-money- on-custom-Christmas-card worthy.  In fact, the best one was a photo I captured on my iphone afterwards.  But of course it is a bit blurry and too low quality to have printed.  Of course.

So I did what any normal mom would do.  I tried to bribe my hubby to help me take some of "just the kids".  I dressed them up, brought props and bribes, and took them to a photogenic place.  Maybe some unsuspecting nice person would walk by and I could get them to take our family picture.

Oh sweet failure.  We know each other so well.  Of course we would meet again so soon.

Why does Pinterest and card companies make family pictures look so effortlessly blissful?  Better yet, why do I feel so compelled to recreate my own picture of family happiness? Anyway, while I wallow in self pity for not being able to capture the sweetness of my kiddos, here are a few of the photos for you to snicker over.

Thanks to World Market for the oversized candy canes.

This might be the best one.

He's so handsome!  But no sister....

A tad bit more realistic...

So we had to move on from just candy canes to the lolly pops.... maybe the props were becoming too much of a distraction?

Totally enamored with the candy.  But at least they aren't running around.  Two kids in the same frame is the goal, right?

So we decided to lay on the sidewalk for a while...

And here is my princess.  Its hard to choose between candy and flowers.

No words.

And this is what happens when I try to get a picture with my babies.  Actually, I have about 9 pictures like this.

I'm exhausted and my kids had a sugar high.  My hubby was not amused by my idea of a photo session and we went through a whole package of baby wipes to clean up the sticky.  Isn't life wonderful?  Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, or Happy Valentine's Day, which ever holiday is closest by the time I end up posting this!  Hope you have just as much fun documenting your family as I have with mine!