Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Harriet, decisions, changing mindsets

You know how hard it is to get back in the habit of something once you have stopped doing it?  Like remembering to make the bed, or to clean up the kitchen every night, or to write on a blog.  Sometimes it feels like I'm so behind that it's not worth catching up.  But here I am, nevertheless.  I'm not going to apologize too much...just press on ahead to bigger and better (or at least more consistent) things!  (There's something in the Bible about that, methinks.)

Harriet needs to receive some credit for my blogging absence.  The little miss Inexhaustible has been making valiant attempts to ditch the morning nap (AHH!) thus denying me the hour or so of uninterrupted typing time.  I'm not really sure what to do about the morning nap ditch.  On some days it's easy to go with the flow: she gets up later (8:30am), messes around all morning, and takes an early afternoon nap.  But on other days the lack of nappage is like scraping my fingernails over a chalkboard.  Harriet whines if she doesn't sleep and whines if I try to get her to go to sleep.  And I sit on the bed staring at her theatrics and praying for patience.

In other HarriEd news, she now has four teeth.  Yes indeedy, after a hectic Saturday night and a cranky Easter morning, two more pearly whites emerged on her top gum.  So cute!  And such a relief.  I think I'd rather deal with two teeth at once than the pain and agony happening for one tooth at a time.  She also likes to plan to have her teeth arrive on holidays, which is rather festive and makes it easier for me to remember (since I am an absolute FAIL when it comes to writing things down in a baby book).  With the arrival of the new teeth, HarriEd's appreciation for mushed up food has waned significantly.  It's a bit discouraging to have so many former favourites be denied with such vehemence.  Her poor mommy is left wondering what in the world to do!  Thankfully, Harriet has become a great fan of cheesy Mexican rice casserole and zucchini pizza casserole.  Go figure.

With all of her drama, we love her still!

After a lot of discussion, prayer, more discussion, tears, and more discussion, we have made the decision to move back to Nebraska.  We were waiting for a bolt of lightning to strike and God's booming voice to tell us if we should stay or if we should go, but since that didn't happen we had to weigh our options and just choose.  (Well, there has been a lot of lightning around here recently, but no booming voice.  Just scary tornadoes.)  The reasons for moving are as follows:

  1. The lack of money.  God has provided for all of our needs through various and sundry means, I must say.  But (I don't want to say "but," but I don't know what other word to use at this point) the lack of steady stable income has been most stressful for us and we haven't been able to save up any money for next year's classes at Covenant.  If we were to continue with school we would have to get a significant student loan which is what we want to avoid.
  2. The lack of purpose.  Over the past few months of talking and having experiences and other things, Steve has come to grips with the fact that being in vocational ministry just isn't for us right now.  Maybe later on down the road of life God will lead us back into it.  But right now that doesn't seem to be the case.  It's really, really hard to have to switch gears like this...for both of us, but especially for Steve.  He knows that it would be foolish to spend time and money on a degree that lands him a job that doesn't meet our family's disposition.  We want to keep working in a church, but not vocationally - at least for right now.
  3. The lack of family.  Being away from family has been much harder on me than I anticipated.  Granted, we have received a tremendous outpouring of support and care from the Gs and I'm crazy-grateful for that.  At the same time, it's really lonely to be in a new place with a little baby.  I can't get out and meet people.  We don't have the support of family when things are going rotten with H.  And the bottom line is that we believe that it is very important for Harriet to be around family while she is so little.  There's a reason why God designed the family, and when you don't have a dysfunctional one why not take advantage of the perks?
So we're tentatively planning on making the move back to our old house in the middle of May.  We hate to disappoint people or let people down, but we really have had to make a choice that we feel is best for our family.  And there you have it.

It's challenging to switch gears.  I mean, one of the whole reasons why I wanted to get married to Steve was because we had similar goals to be in ministry.  It was like, Hooray! Now we can be in ministry together!  He can work on sermons all day in his office, eat lunch with me, be off in the evenings, [enter other visions of happy married life], etc.  Now we are understanding that this isn't working out for us right now.  The whole Follow Your Dreams at Whatever Cost may work for Disney movies, but that sure isn't the reality of having to pay bills and keep yourself sane.  We feel confused and disappointed.  What next?  I think the goal for the next little bit will be to move forward with life, seeking God's direction, enjoying being a family and just being content to LIVE for a while.  We both struggle with living each day and not coveting some other greener grass.  Maybe that's the purpose for living a less adventurous lifestyle for a little while.


Harriet is actually asleep right now.  Glory be!  I need to fold and put away the Alpine range of laundry that we washed yesterday, type up a moving list, and clean up the kitchen.  Maybe this evening I'll get to work on my quilt.  That will be fun.

Have a good day, everybody!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

This Tuesday Morning

I realized the other day that I haven't written a one-topic post in a while, unless you count the HarriEd updates which frequent this bloggie.  Those are definitely one topic as H would not allow herself to compete with anyone or anything else.  She must be the Only One.  Perhaps this lack of blogging focus is because my own brain feels exceptionally scattered these days.  The dear little child has the attention span of a gnat, and in order to keep up with her, my attention span is curtailed by force.  Thus when I try to focus on one thing for more than a minute, the gray matter starts bugging out.

In any case, HarriEd blows me away with her sweetness on a daily basis.  She is so stinkin' busy: every waking moment (of which there are many) is consumed with scooting around the floor, picking things up, and inserting them into her mouth.  I have to say, though, that she seems to be less prone to immediately sticking things in her mouth before giving them a good look over.  It's almost as if she is allowing herself to play with the item first.  Or at least give me time to discern if it is suitable for consumption.  Lately she has begun to eat chunks of food that I place on her highchair tray.

Aside from learning to clap, H has been pointing to facial features on my face and then pointing to the same facial features on herself.  I'll say "nose" or "mouth" or "eyes (ouch)" as appropriate and she gets this silly little grin on her face.  The other day she lifted up my shirt, pointed to my stomach and laughed.  I didn't really know what was so funny about my stomach (unless you are laughing at its flubbiness) until she put her mouth on it and performed a full-blown raspberry.  Apparently this was a game she had developed with her father.

HarriEd is also infatuated with herself.  She really needs a sibling because if this keeps up she will be the most vain child on earth (how can she help it when she has scores of friends and relations telling her how fantastic she is on a daily, if not moment by moment, basis?)  We have a picture of her hanging on the wall and every morning when she wakes up, she smiles at it and waves.  She also loves to watch movies of herself.  Sometimes when I'm making her lunch and she is whining in the highchair I'll put a short clip from the Flip on the computer.  She then settles down as she becomes overwhelmed with her own amazing-ness.

Okay, moving on from Harriet.

Steve has been working two jobs for the past week or so.  Cabinet Solutions wants him to work whenever he isn't at Wal Mart which equals lots and lots of hours (and an increased checking account!) and no days off.  We're hoping that he can switch to being full-time at CS because the pay is better, the hours are better, and he'll always have weekends off.

What have I been up to?  Taking care of those two people.  Cooking up new recipes from Food Matters.  Sewing in my spare time.  Attempting to make our house livable.  (Ha.)  Keeping in touch with friends and fambly.

I'd elaborate, but the muchkin woke up.  See?  I told you she was vain.