Really.. this one just had to make the blog hall of fame. I can't help it. Its horrible, its gross, its going to be hilarious one day. Blake has been potty training for a week or two now and he pees like a champ. A real champ. He sits, he stands, he pees on my car, the fence, the brush pile I need to clean up.. the boy is like a walking sprinkler. This is all fabulous and I have a huge stock of gummy bears to keep the motivation going. The other thing. ahem.. numero dos.. not so much. He is very specific to only do it in the privacy of his own room, at naptime when no one is around to see.. or smell.. and well.. its very secretive. He is like the poop mafia. There is a like only a small cell that knows about it, a few stuffed lions and a black lab. One time he ran around diaper free and when the moment came.. he started screaming and sobbing and shouting "I NEEEEEEED A DIAPER". Needless to say... I was scrubbing the floor. So the boy who never poops had a birthday party today. We had a great time, enjoyed visiting with our neighbors, and they were so sweet they even offered up their fence to Blake for pee purposes. This is all well and good.. until he ran to the fence and Steve said "Did he just say.. " I stopped Steve right there, no Blake would never discuss let alone think about poop in a public place. at a party. at a friends birthday party. Right? umm... So I ran over to assist his aim and he said "I have to go poo poo". I still didn't believe it so I checked.. and sure enough.. Needless to say i freaked out. I screamed for Steve in that whispery but firm, get your heiny over here and deliver me from this mess- kinda way. The kind that only wives can do so well. So he came over and just kind of watched. I realized the crisis, and pulled up the swim trunks, ran into the house as fast as I could (there was no time to ask permission, their yard , their VERY PARTY was AT RISK!!!) I threw Blake on the potty. We made it! (mostly). Well enough. Good enough to get the toy Calliou prize that has been sitting on my fridge for two months making my house look junky. ... Now... just four more times and the top of my fridge will be all clear. And heres to hoping we EVER get invited anywhere in this neighborhood again!
Oh sweet Jesus, its been forever since I have blogged and according to bloggers new layout (which took me ten minutes to learn to post !) , I have no views anyhow so I suppose it doesn't matter. For a long time I felt like I had nothing or witty to say. First we went through a very traumatic and high risk pregnancy. By the grace of God our sweet girl arrived healthy and needing much less intervention than originally anticipated. After that I felt like a tornado had hit. Hello friends?! Why didn't anyone tell me how hard the jump from one to two kids is?! All i heard was "The jump from 2 to 3 is so easy".. That should have been my first clue! I was in a hormone crazed, sleep deprived, breastmilk producing, toddler chasing, diaper changing frenzy and i thought i had literally lost my mind. I thought I was going to have to have Steve's Mom and my Mom move in with me full time. No, not to take care of the kids.. to take care of me! I am pretty sure I didn't shower the first few weeks.  
This brings me to Thursday. Ah.. beautiful Thursday, a sunny day, high 80's .. all was well. I decided to pack up my little cherubs and head to the zoo. But I cleverly decided I would outsmart those money grubbers and park on the street. I carefully perused the spaces and made a crazy U turn to get one, all the while warning my temperamental 3 year old of my plan, lest he think there was a change of plan and he had to release Jekyll.. or Hyde.. whichever the crazy one was. I parked the car, singlehandedly pulled my double stroller out of my trunk, popped it open and felt ready to rock the zoo. My hair was styled , I was rocking the short shorts...and get this.. my fingernails and toenails MATCHED! (I can hear your sighs of envy). We started our march to the zoo and I saw a man on a bike coming up behind us, I hurried Blake along and told him to keep up. The man slowed down and said "those aren't your kids are they?" At first I was puzzled... "Uh, no sir, I just picked them up on the other block and I figured I would play house with them..". Anyhow he went on to ask me how old I was and then I realized his agenda. No.. wait, I didn't. At this point I was still flattered. He went on to say "you are gorgeous, you are really beautiful". I said thanks and smiled,  ( i told you I was rocking the short shorts and the nailpolish) Then he started asking me how old I was and telling me his life story (mind you we have only walked 5 houses together). He keeps stopping to tell me how beautiful I am and then we crossed that threshold into weird.. you know, where you want to think someone is nice, but its too freakin late, they let the Cuckoo outta the clock and theres no going back. He starts telling me he is only 35, then changes his mind and tells me he is old enough to be my dad. Then he asks if I am married. I assure him I am, and he tells me how lucky my husband is. Yes man on bicycle.. its too bad I am married, because I really like old men on bicycles. Especially the non showered variety. I would love to get some stepkids who are the same age as me too. At this point I pick up the pace and I am dragging Blake along behind me and we retreat into the zoo where I think we have found amnesty from unwanted attacks. 
Well-- we  sat down for lunch. Let me preface this by saying I am pretty afraid of birds when they get close to me. So we are sitting at a table, I am feeding Kenzie her prunes (thats a whole nother saga..) and imploring Blake to eat his sandwich. All of the sudden out of no where three seagulls descend upon our table squawking. They PICKED UP Blake's sandwich and carried it away!!! IT was on A BUN!!! thats HEAVY!! I did what any mother would.. I got up and jumped about three feet backward. About five more gulls come down and they start fighting over who gets the sandwich. Kenzie is crying, Blake is screaming "WHAT YOU DOIN WITH MY FOOD", and I am about to go find the looney on the bike to protect me from the birds. phew... we packed up and ran to a more secluded table as fast as we could. The moral of the story is.. dont be mean to the wierdo on the bike, because you might need him someday..


Garbage Connoisseur

I like to think of myself as a purveyor of the finer bits of refuse that I can find in close proximity to the street. Some people call it garbage picking, but I like to think if it as treasure hunting. Last night I was walking my dogs in the freezing cold. The sidewalk had turned to a slippery skating rink and I was anxious to get the walk over with, until I happened upon a lovely little treasure. On top of the recycling bin, I found this :... Ok its up there. An excersaucer! I was so excited. I debated driving home but didn't want to bother with getting in the car and trying to fit it in the backseat amidst the sea of carseat, toys, and old sippys. So, I put both dog leashes in one hand, and wrapped my arm around this big fella, and started trudging home. I was a good block away, and the dogs started to get worse on their leashes. I kept having to set it down and make them sit/ stay... then we would start again. A few times I had to stop because I thought for sure that someone was following me. I looked around suspiciously to see if some other mama wannabe was trying to get in on my loot. Finally I realized it was the rattle on the excersaucer making noise. This same noisemaker was startling the heck out of the dogs, making them pull me like Balto on his way to deliver medicine (phew too many kids books!!). Anyhow, we were nearly home, no one had seen me and I was almost ready to set down my dogs and toy, when a neighbor about 4 houses down pulled in. I slowed up hoping she wouldn't think I was homeless or something, but she came out of her car, and got into another car in front of her house. At that moment THREE more cars descended upon her driveway. I sped up, head held high, knowing that I had a perfectly good reason for walking around at 9pm in the snowy dark with two dogs and an excersaucer. Mind you the whole time I was being pulled along.. yelling "Heel, HEEL, CHANCE!! Roxy!! Stop!!"
I got home and hid my loot into the garage until dear hubby could see it and fully appreciate its clean, beautiful state. Now its all sanitized, and up on craigslist. :) Ah , I am so savvy!


Sanctus Real said it best...

Today the words of this song by Sanctus Real have been resonating with me all day:
"When I don't measure up to much in this life, I'm a treasure in the arms of Christ".
"I don't have to carry, the weight of who I've been, because I'm forgiven".
Amen. Thank God. Because who I have been is U-G-L-Y, (and I didn't have no alibi!)

I would like to shout it from the rooftops. But for now, I will ponder it in my heart until I can accept the glorious gift that it is.
Blessings for 2011.


The move.

Well, it has been so long since I blogged. I don't know if anyone even cares what I have to say at this point but I will write for my own sanity. For the mother who changed three messy diapers today and got pooped on yesterday. I write for the lady who gets tired of hearing "more? More? MORE? MORE MORE?????".
I have not written since the move. It was a lot harder on me than I expected. I didn't deal with the stress very well, and have learned that I hate change. And here all this time I thought I hated Oak Harbor. I actually grew to love Washington, and the very dear friends I made there. I was at church last week at The Chapel and realized that not one person there knew us, nor probably cared that we were there. It made me sad for Living Word.
I know that God is working on me, and I am dragging my feet. Why is it so easy to take a nap, or even clean the kitchen-instead of picking up the bible. Or getting down to the nitty gritty?
On a happy note, its so amazing to live close to our family. We absolutely made the right decision in getting out of the Navy, and I see God working in amazing ways. Steve was offered an interview for a part time Human Resources job, and he got the job a few days later. In this economy this is huge. Buffalo is a dying city, and God is breathing life into our future. This also allows him the time to go to school 3/4 time in order to use his GI Bill. I am returning to Buffalo State in the Spring, and am happy to get back to school and glad that I still get to spend time with Blake at home.
Our new house is just beautiful. My Dad coordinated a cross country purchase, and we are so happy with our little abode. Blake's room is one of my favorite parts of the house, along with the picture window in front to display our big tree!
Blake is starting to adjust to the change slowly, but it has been hard on him too. He doesn't quite know what to think about his new room, but he is starting to talk a lot more and give lots of hugs and kisses. He is the joy of our life, and such a blessing. Merry Christmas to You and yours!


Playground games- all grown up

Today was just a crazy day for people encounters. I have one more to add before I lose the laptop for the night! Blake and I went to the playground next to our house where we encountered some preteen girls, I overheard their laughing and cussing, and "SHHHH don't swear in front of little kids". I just smiled at them, and thanked God I am not a preteen anymore, I overheard they were texting and calling boys. Pretty soon it became obvious that they were being propositioned by an older boy, to send inappropriate pictures. These girls were in SIXTH and EIGHTH grade. They giggled and clearly enjoyed the attention via text, although one could tell they were looking at each other for cues as to how to respond. I felt Beth Moore come over me in an instant. I tried to ignore. I tried to pretend I didn't know what they were doing. But i couldn't help it. Luckily Blake marched over to them, so I said "you girls aren't sending dirty pictures to guys are you?". They quickly said "no no no, but this guy wants us to". I told them "don't do it!!" I didn't know how to convey that they were beautiful, innocent, and worth so much more. So I sputtered, But i did manage to say that they were beautiful and they clearly already had the interest of young boys, there was no need to take it further. I implored them to have more self respect. We got to talking and they talked about how they hated this town. One girl told me she has moved 12 times, from foster mom, to real mom, to navy dad. Another said that she can't even remember how many times she has moved. As they ran off to another playground (probably to escape me!) , I smiled big and said "Remember girls, make good choices!".... they promised they would. Lord, help me if I ever have a daughter to instill a sense of worth in her so great that she will never doubt her value for a moment.

My Post Office Angel.... and whoaa!

Today is the first time in awhile when I have walked in the door just bursting with excitement, and I had to blog it down :). First off- if you know me AT ALL, you know I have been struggling with Joy lately. (Not my best friend Joy :), just the concept). Today I had to go to the post office, and while there I had to get an envelope and try to address it, all while containing a squirmy toddler. I hate going there, and its NEVER been a pleasant experience. Well today Blake sat still in my arms. I heard a giggle and I turned around and a sweet older man was making faces at him and playing peek a boo. He continued to entertain Blake the entire time we were in line, and there was no struggle. As It neared my turn he said "I want to thank you for doing the toughest job in the world, being a mommy" ... I smiled and said thank you, figuring he was just being nice. Then he continued "And, I also want to thank you for being such a motherly, nurturing wife. You know.." At that , I started to really tune in. This sweet man, didn't know what I had been dealing with lately, he didn't know that I am trying to be the best mom, and wife and daughter and friend all while wanting to pull my hair out. I was so touched. On the way out I got to hold the door for him, and he said "You have a nice day now", he said each word slowly, I could hear the sincerity dripping off each word. "God, ... Bless you!". It was then that it hit me. I had just seen the face of God. Whether you believe in angels or not, .. there is no denying that God had some hand in that! Imagine, at the Oak Harbor Post Office, one of my most dreaded places!!
Next is very humbling. AS we transition into the civilian world we have imposed a very strict budget on ourselves. No more starbucks, or mcdonalds, and eating out is very rare. As we keep getting hit with unexpected expenses it has become clear that money does NOT grow on trees. When it came to tithe "joyfully" at church yesterday, Steve asked if I had any cash, I knew he had a $20 in his wallet, so I reminded him of it, and told him to put it in. I didn't want him to put it in . That 20 should have gone STRAIGHT to savings, It was almost painful to watch 20 whole dollars disappear into the burgundy velvet abyss of the offering bag. I wanted to run after them and say.... "OH whoops, your mistake, that $20 is to pay off the vet bill, or the cell phone, or to save and buy christmas presents this year!", Alas, I began to worship, and I just kept hearing in my head "The Lord will provide". I claimed it, and felt much better.
Today I went into the NEX and saw a big sign, fill out a survey for a $5.00 coupon. Thats a free $5.00 , not off a certain amount, just free stuff! Then, Blake was so wild, the lady running the survey offered to chase him around the Halloween displays while I filled it out!! Then I went to Walgreens, to browse, and buy a few things with coupons, trying to learn how to earn register rewards. Basically every week you get a certain amount of register rewards for certain purchases. This week, pampers diapers had a $2.oo reward. After two transactions, the diapers had been on sale, I had a dollar off for each one. I ended up with $4.00 register rewards. Again- thats free money, no minimum purchase. At the very least I can go get eggs, or milk. Or more likely more diapers! As I was driving home it hit me , I "made" $9.00 today, thats almost HALF of what we put in the offering. The LORD does provide, and gosh he is creative about it!!! :)


A little Perspective

It is truly amazing what a difference a day makes. Yesterday, I spent the day lamenting my problems, and wondering how such things could happen. Reading yesterday's post makes me want to slap myself silly. Today Steve and I went to a memorial service for a dear lady who befriended me when I moved to Whidbey Island. I was new here, and had no car and no friends, (I know, you know the sob story), anyhow, Mary Ellen was friends with a family friend back in NY. She met my mom on a trip home, long story short- she got word that I was new here. She promptly mailed me a letter and asked to get together. I figured I had nothing to lose, so we did. I didn't know what to say, I was a homebody who ended up with friends by default, I never really "made new friends". Mary Ellen would come and chat, tell me great stories. She worked with unwed mothers and their babies, she survived a terribly abusive marriage, and finally found the love of her life. As Steve and I sat in the back of the tiny catholic church, I got a glimpse of her husband. I had never met him, but I saw the pain in his eyes, ... and I knew. I choked up at the sight of him, and as the eulogy was delivered i had to choke back tears over and over.. until I couldn't anymore. They recounted stories of how she fought her way into the hospital room and demanded a bed for herself so she could spend the night with her husband after open heart surgery. He laughed as he told us how she went to the bathroom, came back in her nightie and curlers- and hopped into her bed. The last month of her life she was in a care facility, where he requested a bed next to hers, so he could hold her hand every night.
To have such a love, is such a gift. I am so blessed for a husband that I love dearly, and I made sure he knew it when we left that church. Seeing the mourners, the emptiness in her husband's eyes made me SO GRATEFUL for all that I have. I don't care about money, or stains, or dog intestines. My loved ones are safe, and sound, and for that I thank God.
1 Thess. 4:3
But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope.

The priest read this, and I wondered, what about those who have no hope? Those who don't know Christ. Were there people in that church that really believed this life is all we have? This is it? Nothing after. I am sad for them, because there is more. Christ has SO much more for us.


The Journey..

It seems like I haven't blogged in such a long time. I enjoy blogging to make people laugh, and to share fun anecdotes but lately, the fun times have been few and far between. As we prepare to transition out of the navy, I am learning just how resilient I truly am. I cannot believe the amount of stress and frustration we have been dealing with. First and foremost we have our health, and we have a loving and supportive family. For those things I am grateful. The Lord has taken care of us always, and through the most recent fiascos, he still is. People keep asking me "Whats wrong" ? So many things keep going wrong, I can't even remember them all!
1. Chance at a tennis ball, which nearly killed him, and cost more money than you want to know.
2. Both dogs got worms (TMI i know!)
3. I began having chronic wrist pain requiring the use of a splint all the time, (try changing a gross diaper in that!)
4. Roxy knocked the laptop on the floor nicking the finish.
5.I threw the laptop across the dining room making the top sit funny and it doesn't close quite right
6. My brand new expensive front loaders make my clothes stink, but i cant find mildew anywhere!
7. Blake busted red nailpolish all over my master bath, and bedroom carpet.
8. Roxy threw up and (....) all over the livingroom, staining the carpet.
9. Roxy chewed up the blinds. Three sets of expensive blinds.
10. Blake is cutting two teeth, and is very upset by it!
11. I got a flat tire that could not be repaired.
12. A dear friend from Whidbey passed away after a long and grueling battle with many health problems.

You know, now that I look at all that, it doesn't look as bad. Yes it is all bad, but through it all I am working on being faithful. I haven't even counted the times I have forced myself to sing "This is the day the Lord has made, I WILL rejoice and be glad in it", through my tears.
So in the spirit of faith and my journey, I will return to blogging. I have also started the study "Breaking Free" by Beth Moore. It is a study about release from bondage of any sort, whether you call it bondage, baggage, or crap.... we all have it, do you want to get rid of it?
I am very excited and have been diligently working on it.
"A Christian is held captive by anything that hinders the abundant and effective Spirit - filled life that God planned for her" - Beth Moore
Well let me tell you friends, I am sick of being afraid. Fear has always been my bondage. Not butterflies, but full on terror. No more, I am giving it to God. I AM DONE!
Getting out of the Navy is the scariest thing I have faced in awhile, because we are safe in our little bubble of paychecks and healthcare, a house, 2 cars, and an island full of wonderful friends. We are so blessed to go home to loving families, but the fear of employment, unemployment, and not being able to make ends meet would have been enough to throw me for a loop two years ago. Now, I know that the Lord will provide. As my very wise mother says "XYZ... is not my provider, God is my provider".
The United States Government is not my provider.
Navy Federal Bank is not my provider.
My debit card is not my provier...
God is. And he will.


Stellar Business Woman

As I write this post, I realized that I really enjoy the word Stellar. Its so cool sounding, and edgy. Anyhow, I really am not the businesswoman I thought I was. Many of you might recall the blog I made for my craft stuff, "Wiggly Island Creations". Well I tried to pull it up the other day, and I can't find it! I lost the link to my own business blog. "Oh shucks", I thought- I better pull up the bookmarked sites. Its not there either! I have sites bookmarked on how to make dresses out of pillowcases, but not even my own blog! So then I did what any genius would do, and googled it. Nope, no luck. So now my Wiggly Island Blog is lost in cyber land so that creepo-s can look at it, and I cant. Oh well, when i make new things I guess I will post them on here. Anyhow, stay tuned for pillowcase dresses (one done, one almost done), and more crafts, I am really getting my craft on, and I will be at the farmers market with Brooks and Elysia weather permitting next Thursday, so come see me!!


Did you get pooped on?

Did you ever just feel like life was pooping on you? Wow this past week has been just that. First Blakey was sick with a fever. Fevers scare me, almost as much as birds. So you can see how this would send me loopy. Finally he got better, and i got.. cold. I got very very cold. Then very hot. Thus began my feverish bout. Day one was bearable because I 'got sick' right as Steve came home from work. Day two was horrible. My body ached from head to toe. I had shooting pains in places that I didn't even know had nerve endings, and my body was hot and cold all at the same time. Poor Blake was bored to death, but I mustered the strength to draw him a bath. I leaned against the tub playing with his toys halfheartedly. He then decided to squat, and i knew. I just knew something bad was coming. You guessed it! He decided to poop in the tub. I started sobbing and said 'no no no', I pulled him out and carried him to his room. I called Steve in utter desperation. I dont know what I expected he could do, but he is my knight, he always makes bad things go away. So he agreed to come home for an early lunch. At this point he came in to find me crying on the couch feeling sorry for myself, and having visions of dying of this yellow fever or whatever i had ( i told you, fevers scare me). I called my dear friend joy at his suggestion, and she agreed to come take Blake so I could rest. I honest to God would have given her a million dollars if I had it, to prove how grateful I was. I felt like the Israelites when the red sea parted. I just had visions of snuggling in a warm (then cold, then hot) bed with no one pulling my hair, punching my face or throwing pacifiers on the floor. The cavalry arrived, and I practically ran to bed. I felt a lot better when I got up, and even managed to get a coat of blue paint on Blakes dresser before he got home.
Then came Friday. I felt so much better I decided to run errands. I got my cap and gown , Class of 2010! I took Blake to the library and we came home for lunch and a nap. I woke up from the nap FREEZING cold (i had a blanket on!). Then we moved to the bedroom with more blankets and I woke up with a 102 fever. I called Steve freaking out that I had to go to urgent care, because I felt like I was on fire, plus my body ached horribly. We got there, and the doctor quickly looked me over and said "yep your dry you need an iv". I felt like the world had closed in on me. an iv? I hate needles more than I hate birds. Can you believe that? Speaking of which a creep-0 bird is living in my vents on my house-more on that later.
The nurse came in for the iv, I freaked out some more. And cried. But Blake and Steve came in with some fresh picked Dandelions, which helped. So i got 2 liters of iv fluids and a lot of tests and I was pretty much dehydrated and sick. Finally we got to go home.
Saturday I went to a new salon to get my hair blonde. THe stylist informed me that she could only color my hair if i purchased her high end priced out the wazoooo shampoo. I foolishly agreed. now i own shampoo that costs more than a filet mignon. That is wrong.

Despite this- I love my hair, I graduated with a 3.4, and I love our little life! I am very blessed!


our bedroom

Freecycle, stop messin with me!

So today I signed on to check my email (who I am kidding , i never even sign out), and saw a great freecycle post. Some lady was cleaning out her craft room. Vintage fabric, other fabric, yarn, misc. Great! I call the number, and i was actually the first to respond. I drove to her house, a cute neighborhood I hadn't been in before. I was greeted by three beautiful big barking dogs, all aussie/shepherd mixes. Her and her husband were just getting home from yoga, with their homemade yoga mat bags slung over their shoulders. He looked like a hippy from the past, and they were very nice. I walked inside, and saw a giant pile of junk, and thought, oh well I am sure thats not all for me. (Mind you the ad said "must take all"). Before I could think too much, I started to wonder why they were being so nice and inviting me in. They started telling me stories and told me to 'come on in!'. Then I started thinking about that craigslist killer guy. And then I started thinking what if they put up that craft ad just to lure me here. So i started mentally plotting my escape, and meanwhile, she directed me to my 'pile'. So i start gathering things, old mens shirts, and packing peanuts to name a few. I haven't done crafts with packing peanuts since third grade. But whatever, who I am i to judge. Besides this is WA, we go green here. So we get outside and in the fresh air I realize this house reeked like cat pee. Horribly. These people were really nice but oh jeepers! I have a friend with 10 cats and her house smells great- i have no idea how many cats these people had. I only saw 2, but yikes. So then i realize that all the stuff smells like cat pee too. Great, now i have packing peanuts and old mens shirts in my trunk that smell like cat pee. As i drove away, I said a quick prayer thanking God those people didn't entice me with their crafts and then rob me or worse. (hah, what would they rob, my public speaking textbook??) anyhow, i am done freecycling for the time being. now i have to get rid of all this stuff!!!!