Saturday, June 6, 2015

The Realities of Moving

Just wanted to give an update on our travels and adventures across the country. Gosh, moving is a huge deal and I'm exhausted. But..I am feeling better yesterday and today, and I have to keep reminding myself that we aren't just on vacation and I can just take a breath and settle in. 

We started our journey last Thursday by driving to D.C. This had been something I really wanted to do with the kids. I hated to be so close and not take them at least for a short trip. And I'm still glad we did it.....the kids weren't quite as thrilled as me to be seeing the amazing sites, but whatever, I can rest in knowing that we have stood on the grounds of the National Mall. I do have a neat story about God's provision.

The reality of our two detour trips- one to D.C and one to the beach, and really, even the car ride- the reality was that we moved so quickly that I didn't even give a thought to planning the other things. Like, what will the kids do in the car? Heck, I didn't know, I just put some food in the car, with some technology and hoped that would suffice (and it did, thank God). But as far as D.C., I had only booked the hotel. So- in the morning, we got on the shuttle where we met some lovely people who told us where to get off on the metro, gave us extra metro tickets and their map. That didn't stop us from looking like complete tourists, but I felt like God was taking care of us. Then, in the Air and Space Museum's food court, someone gave us 3 free meal tickets, which saved us a ton.

Then we were off to Ocean City, MD for a couple days on the beach. That really was a good time. The kids loved the beach. The ocean was freezing cold!!! But that didn't stop them, and really, the sand is just as much fun. I love digging up those mole crabs and watching them bury back in the sand. I love the beach so much, it just does something to me. We also took a trip to Assateague Island, and that was absolutely beautiful! We did see some horses. We saw one right at the beginning, which the park ranger told us- that horse is always there like a greeter, lol. And then we saw more on the way out, but the bay areas were just so cool. The water was much warmer and the kids could get in. The beach there is pretty cool too, you get really white sand and then just stretches of sand dunes in the background, plus the horses. We didn't see any horses by the water areas, but we did see horse poop, so we know they were there at some point, haha.

So we had successfully taken a little mini-vacay with only the occasional drama, so it felt nice.

We were a little tired, admittedly. Things had gone so quickly with the move, we had hardly had a chance to breath in the last three weeks. And on the beach, sitting in the sand, Travis and I made a commitment to do two things-

1. We would stop thinking the other person was always selfish.
2. We would stop thinking we were always right and being persecuted by the other. Which sounds funny, but it's easy to do when you're tired.

After that, things were much better :)).

So we were then officially on our way to Colorado! And really, the drive was pretty uneventful. We stopped in Dayton and then Kansas City. Starbucks was my best friend- Iced Venti Coffee. Everyday. Plus dark chocolate. I really didn't get too tired. We listened to Chronicles of Narnia, the Focus on the Family ones (if you haven't heard them- they are awesome!! very well done), watched lots of movies, played lots of ipad, ate snacks. Repeat for 3 days.

We made it to Colorado on Wednesday. It was so surreal to drive into Colorado Springs. Long before you get into town, you can see the mountains and they are your backdrop all the way into town. Just stunning. Travis and I both were having so many nostalgic feelings driving in. I think the kids got tired of us telling them how we did such and such at that place, and such and such at this place, lol. But we've both spent a lot of time in the Springs, and it was neat to come back. And neat to realize that it was our city again.

We did have sick kiddos on the 3rd day, which really stunk. High fevers and headaches. Whatever it was, it lasted two days for each one and we are now finally better, thank God!

And we're on Day 4 of being in town, we are staying with my husband's parents and
having such a wonderful time catching up.

We've started house hunting, which is fun and stressful at the same time. But I know God brought us out here, so He has a good house for us. And a coffee in hand doesn't hurt anything.

We are very excited for this new adventure. I have a lot of feelings about being here and moving- and my personality is always looking for what's next? But I'm trying to just calm down and get a handle on settling us, getting into some kind of routine, and just taking things easily for now.

We love all of our friends in both places we've been. We already miss our friends in NY, but are happy to be spending time with family and friends here. We feel like God has been really good to us in helping us and leading us. He's answered a couple really specific things for me, as much as to say, "yes, I did lead you here." And I think that's a great start.

I am including some pics. They are not in order, lol.

Assateague Island

Taking off! 

My drink of choice. 

This is what you look like when you get separated from the other half of your group on the metro because the doors shut too soon. THANK GOD Travis was with the other kiddos. 

Anderson's in D.C. 

Ocean City in the morning. 

We finally saw a group of horses on the way out of Assateague. The kids weren't as excited as I was to get out and see them. 

On the bayside of Assateague. He found a crab shell. 

She found some clam shells, which are now, as I remember, sitting in our glove box. 

Even babies need coffee on long rides in the car. 

Our- "We made it!" faces. 

Our lovely view from Travis's parent's neighborhood. 

Beautiful sunset a couple nights ago. 

The Donut Mill in Woodland Park. Travis used to work there a long time ago and they have superb donuts. 

Us at the Air and Space Museum. 

How many kids can fit on a luggage cart?? 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Super Easy Fried Bean and Cheese Burritos

I just really love these burritos. They are one of my go-to meals for lunch or dinner whenever I don't know what to make. It's an especially helpful recipe if I'm pressed for time. So I decided to share the recipe! They are easy to make, easy to double, and something my whole family will eat.

You start off with refried beans, cheese, tortillas and olive oil. I really love the refried beans from Trader Joe's, they use organic pinto beans and put some other spices in there, so they are already seasoned. I use 10-inch tortillas and with 3 cans of beans, you end up with 8-10 burritos (depending on how full you make them.) 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The day my son saw a naked woman.

Ughhhhhhhh. I want to scream out in frustration!

My son came to me today while he was online- he's learning to make websites, which is great and he loves it. He came to me and said he had seen an inappropriate picture. He closed the tab and came to get me. Phew. That's the good news...and I'll go back to that in a minute.

The terrible news is that I went into the history and looked at where he had been. He had been searching for an image of cardboard armor and had then stumbled onto an adult dating site. Well, the homepage for this site is a nude woman. Standing there with no clothes on, inviting you to try this site. I am SO sad for this. I am sad and disgusted that the first naked woman he's seeing is a girl he will never meet in real life, and certainly not someone he will be romantically involved with. I am screaming inside. I'm so upset about it. I've had some time to think about it, I'm more angry. Angry that we live in a world that makes it nearly impossible to guard our children's innocence. Certainly we can and need to be taking measures and steps to protect our kids on the internet with internet safety programs, blocking adult content, etc. But in the end, it is not a matter of IF, it's a matter of WHEN.

Sigh, even as I'm writing this, I'm blaming myself. If we would just have had better security, maybe that wouldn't have happened. And then I feel pity, my poor precious son, being exposed to something that he should never have seen. I feel discouraged and so so sad.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Teaching Our Kids to Take Responsibility Part 2

This is the next post in Teaching Our Kids to Take Responsibility. You can read the first one here- about teaching our kids to take responsibility for their actions. This post?

Teaching Our Kids to Take Responsibility for Their Happiness

Happiness. It's something we all want right? But I can say that it is 100% difficult to make someone
else happy if they don't want to be. You can try, and sometimes it does work- but I find it's hard to make it last.

This is especially true for a child who doesn't want to be happy. I mean, I've bought toys, planned special trips, promised tv, let them play extra nintendo, bought donuts, candy, you know, all those healthy things- and while those things do seem to provide temporary happiness- usually just around the corner is something that makes the child unhappy and now we're back to square one.

So…I learned early on that if anyone was going to be making my kids happy, it wasn't going to be me. I just can't keep up with it! They MUST learn that if they want to be happy- there is only one person who can make that choice- and it wasn't me, lol.