Monday, March 30, 2009

E Trade Baby?

Chan helps Mommy make a cake

Learned to ride

Random days

I have had some random people tell me that Chandler resembles the E trade baby...hmm maybe... What do you think?

Mr Brown Eyes

This is what Chan hopes to buy with his E Trade earnings. It's what his buddy Cademon's already earned with his mad trading skills... ;)

2 dudes and a 'stang

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Consistent Grace

Lately, It seems that everywhere I look, I see my own failures.

At Charlie's Parent-Teacher conference, his teacher tells me that his strong-will is managed very well with a strict routine. And I hear "You've been failing your son, because you lack giving him a routine."

I go to a Bible Study for young moms and hear how important it is to wake up earlier than the kids, start the day off right with alone time with God. And I know it's true. I always feel so much better when I spend time communing with him. But 90% of the time I'm laying in bed 'til the kids require my attention, savoring every moment of rest I can get. And I hear "How do you expect your sons to love the Lord consistently if you can't discipline yourself?"

Chuck offered to take the boys one evening so I could rest at home. I told him not to, because then I'd just have guilt that I didn't seize the opportunity to clean house simply because I'm tired. Of course, he kinda looked at me funny. I know, it's ludicrous, but I still hear "you're a failure as a housekeeper."

It's a happy day when I manage to get dinner (and even lunch) on the table on time. It's also a rarity. And I hear, "You're a failure at caring for your family. And you're not too good at cooking either."

I was at the grocery store a few days ago, and saw a bunch of orchid plants on sale because the blooms were dying. I love orchids, and was so tempted to save some. But then I thought of the orchid plants I have at home; some of which I've had for years now...and no blooms. So I passed on them, once again reminded that I why even try?

It's not that I can't successfully do anything, it's just that I majorly lack at consistency. And sometimes I feel pity for myself because the weight of my responsibilities seems like more than I can bear. But usually I'm crying out to God to give me strength, and live through me. Enable me to be consistent. Help me keep my priorities in order. Show me how to stop failing.

And then it happened.

I walked into my bathroom where my orchid plants reside today, and saw this:

Orchid buds

I nearly cried. After 3.5 long years of watering them as often as I can remember (not consistent, mind you), they chose to produce buds. When I'd nearly given up hope, God gave me a sign. A gift of grace.

Sometimes it's more than just a bud

Really, He's the one that gives the fruit. My efforts are pointless apart from Him. And in His grace, He took my feeble attempts and made something beautiful.

Orchid buds

Thank You, Lord, for the reminder that only in You is anything possible.

Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.
Proverbs 16:3

Sunday, March 8, 2009

1 Year of Mr. Happy

Chandler's birthday was also the end of my 365 project (1 photo a day) for him. The video above is about a third of those photos. If you'd like to see the whole thing, click here for the set.

For Chandler's birthday, we actually did a very small celebration. Quite a contrast to Charlie's big 5th birthday bash. But really we wanted to keep it simple, because what more could a one year old want than some alone time with a cupcake? He had a blast. Chuck's parents came to visit for the day in order to celebrate with us. Here's the video of the singing:

And here's the video of the cupcake monster (actually there are 3 videos, but here's one):

Happy Birthday Chandler

We did our usual thing that morning, bringing him a cinnamon roll with a candle. He was quite surprised to see the whole family singing to him while he was in his crib. Then we spent the day with Grandma and Grandpa. All in all, a great day.

Cupcake time

And here are his latest things: he can open doors! He's figured out the handles that you just pull down on. I'm in so much trouble. He's also moved from the kitchen cabinets to the bathroom cabinets. And now, he's realized that toilet paper goes in the toilet, so he likes to spend time ripping it off the roll and putting it in. He also loves to put things in the bath tub, such as pizza crusts, pull ups, toys, shoes, etc. And he's learning how to go down stairs. He has a healthy fear of them, so if he goes up and can't get down, he stands there and fusses until someone saves him.

And he actually gave me a gift for his birthday: he started saying "Mama."

Have I mentioned how much I love this age?!

Self Portrait