Thursday, November 12, 2009

Catching up

Well, I said I was going to do this Gratitude Challenge every day.

I failed.

But all is not lost. According to the rules set forth by my sister-in-law, I can still participate, but I have to make up each day that I skip. Since I've skipped the last 6 days, and since I'm supposed to list 3 items of gratitude per day, that means I'm behind 18 things of thankfulness. (This sounds like a word problem in math class...)

For the last 6 days, I have been thankful...

1)...that I did not have to potty train my children while living in the various apartments we've lived in - apartments that had only coin-operated laundry facilities in the basement or adjacent buildings.

2)...that we are financially established enough that I can afford to throw away poopy underwear, rather than try to salvage it. That is so worth $1 to me.

3)...for Clorox wipes. I know I've already blogged about how much I love them, but they really are a germaphobe's best friend. And they come in handy when semi-potty trained children have accidents on the tile floor.

4)...that in spite of a few mishaps, Natalie really is doing better in the potty department.

5)...that Anders is done with the audit for this year. This means that he'll be home early enough to: a) help with the kids while I fix dinner; and b) intercept all the calls from charity organizations asking for donations. Apparently I'm on some sort of list entitled "Charitable Suckers," because we get at least 3-4 calls a week; they always ask for me; and if Anders tells them I'm not home, they refuse to talk to him and say they'll call back later.

6)...for sweet potatoes and blueberries. These two delectable foods have been hailed as "superfoods," but unlike their contemporaries, Spinach and Broccoli, the sweet potato and blueberry are delicious!

7)...for boneless, skinless chicken breast, and for the people who sold them on sale.

8)...for butter, sugar, and flour. While they might not make the "superfoods" list in a dietitian's opinion, they're tops in my book. Oh, how I love to bake anything that has these three delightful ingredients!

9)...for friends who host Pampered Chef parties (Kristy!). I'm quite sure my life will be complete next week when I get my cookie press.

10)...for Febreeze Air Effects. It keeps my house from smelling like we have potty-trainees and diaper-wearers living here.

11)...for the Twilight blogs on I 'LOL' every time I read them. (Yes, I just said 'LOL'. And yes, I've read the Twilight series. Admitting this is perhaps the most embarrassing moment of my life. And I've had some pretty embarrassing moments, believe you me.)

12)...that Daddy is around to make fun, happy family memories for the kids. As I type this, he is the basement, playing guitar, and singing silly songs that the kids are helping to make up. My hope is that these memories will override the memories of a grumpy, frazzled mommy.

13)...for a healthy family. No one has asthma; no severe allergies; everyone is cognitively sound; we all have 10 fingers and 10 toes, and that sort of thing.

14)...that my mom gave me a sewing machine for Christmas back in 2001. I have to admit, at the time, I didn't fully appreciate the gift. But next to baking, sewing has become a favorite little hobby of mine.

15)...that Heavenly Father gives me experiences to help me see how living the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings us happiness and peace. I've always known this, but I know this better today than I did even 6 months ago.

16)...for a clean house. Outside of my family, it is one of my greatest joys in life. (And that, my friends, shows you just how lame I really am.)

17)...that my active little Ethan will hold quietly still during our family prayers. The moment the "amen" is said, he is back to his loud, boisterous self, but I sure do appreciate those blessed few moments of silence as we pray.

18)...for Paul Mitchell. Specifically for Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum, and Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Relaxing Balm. Thanks to Paul, my hair doesn't have to look like this:
(You think I'm kidding? This is seriously what my hair does without any hair products. Just ask my husband.)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Day 2 of Gratitude

1. So I have this thing about having a clean house. I can't function when it's disorderly; I can't mentally handle clutter and chaos. And so today I am most grateful that I was finally able to get my house in order (after a week of trying and failing). This means laundry done, dishes done, floors mopped, basement clean, carpets vacuumed, and food storage organized. When my house is clean, I feel like anything is possible.

2. I am grateful to have a television, and kids that like to watch it. I [try to] limit TV time, but sometimes I just need the kids occupied long enough for me to empty the dishwasher without having Ethan throw butcher knives at me. Not that this has happened.

(When I first had Andrea, I promised myself I'd never let the TV babysit my kids. I also never gave her a binky that had fallen on the floor without first sterilizing it in boiling water. Yeah...a lot changes with 3 kids...)

3. Speaking of television, today as the kids were getting ready to watch Robin Hood (so that I could empty the dishwasher without the fear of losing my toes to the butcher knife), Ethan and Natalie started fighting about where they were going to sit for the movie. I heard Natalie scream, "You, sir, have taken my seat!!" (This is a quote from Robin Hood.)

While I'm not sure I'm happy about Natalie being able to quote movies at such a young and tender age, I am grateful that the movie she is quoting is my childhood favorite.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Attitude of Gratitude

So, my sister-in-law Heidi does a Gratitude Challenge every November. To participate, you email her 3 things that you are grateful for, every single day in November. Since this is in keeping with my original platform when I started this blog, I thought I'd give it a go. And rather than email it to her, I thought I'd do it on my blog, because why keep my gratitude a secret?

So, here we go...

1. Today I am grateful for Andrea's school teachers. I volunteer there occasionally, and I cannot get over how well-behaved the students are at the school. The teachers work wonders with the students. They know how to elicit good behavior from the kids, and they can do it without the use of a paddle (unlike the teachers I had when I went to school...but that was in Texas...)

2. I am grateful that Anders' busy season is coming to an end (November 13!!!!). No more 14 hour days for him. No more single parenting for me. No more going for days without seeing Daddy for the kids. (Today he got home from work by 5:45! I could get used to this...)

3. I am so grateful that I have my family. Last night a friend of the family was killed in a motorcycle accident. He was a husband, a father, and a grandfather. I am reminded of how much my own family means to me, and of how much I love them. I am also reminded of how grateful I am to have the Gospel - to know that death is not the end - to know that families can be together eternally - and to know that the Savior has born all of our sorrows and will comfort and support us in our time of need.