Thursday, November 19, 2015

Old Me, New

If there's one thing beautiful about life that I have discovered this past year, it is that we are always free to explore new routes, try new things, be new people, enjoy new things. Of course, I've also learned there's a limit to this. There are many, many things I wish I had the time to do or to try, and I simply have limits. I suppose I'm still learning the balance in this, but for now, I am basking in the beauty of new things.

One of these new things is in the kitchen. A few months ago, Ben decided to do the Advocare 24-Day challenge. For him, this meant he drank shakes twice a day, but for me, it meant I needed to cook certain types of foods for dinner: nothing processed, no carbs, and no sugar. I decided to use this time to also learn how to cook gluten free meals. It's something I have wanted to do for a while, but I have honestly just been intimidated by the cost and the foreignness of it. But once I finally just buckled down and bought the gluten-free flour, I realized it's not so bad. I have enjoyed trying new things, like oat flour that I grind myself. I'm far from completely understanding all the ins-and-outs of gluten free, and we still eat gluten quite often. With family, friends, and Life Group members who cannot eat gluten, it just seemed like it was time to feel competent in cooking for these people I care about. I'm going to try a few new things for Thanksgiving. Pray I don't mess up the important traditional dishes!

And my new love for painting continues. I do it for fun, and I also have a little Etsy shop now. God has shown such sweet kindness in this shop. I have had three sales which has been perfect. I'm learning and enjoying this new hobby.

My newest love/hobby/adventure is hand sewing. Particularly, hand-sewing these little dolls. So my mom is an incredible seamstress. She made dress-up costumes and doll outfits and my prom dress and everything else in between. But I never learned at all! Super unfortunate. I get really nervous about trying new things and push it off for a while. So, I had been eyeing these lovely Gingermelon doll patterns for a while, but I try to be cautious before spending money on crafty items. I wanted to make sure that I was really willing to make one before spending the money. I finally decided that I was going to do it for a Christmas present for Sophie, so I bought the pattern. And I just love her! I loved making her so much that I have since made one for Brielle (with different color skin and hair and clothing), and I also am working on making extra outfits for them. I think I may have found a new fun hobby! One thing I love about finding handicrafts that I love is that it gives me something to do while the girls play other than being on my phone or my computer. I don't want them to see me on technology all the time (and I don't want to be on technology all the time!), so I love having something fun to do (because chores aren't fun) in my free time (because though it's rare, there is such a thing even for moms!).

In other recent news, that 153 bowling score below is mine (my sister is the stinker who beat me by three points). I have never scored this high, so this is definitely a "new me" celebration! There may have been bumpers involved. But still, even with bumpers, I usually just stink at bowling. So I'm celebrating this score forever.

But there are some things about me that are the same. :) Isn't it wonderful that God created us all with personalities that just gravitate toward certain things because we love them and are good at them? I have always loved reading, and I still love reading. I only wish I had more time for it. Soooo many books to read, so little time! Especially with all these new fun crafts I'm trying out. I have a number of heavy (in thought, not in weight) books on my Wish List right now, and these just aren't books that are easy to read in the rare moments when kids aren't crying or needing fed or wanting you to read their own books (but hey, I just started reading The Chronicles of Narnia to my four-year-old... so three cheers for the beginning of reading fun books with my kids!). (Side Note: The picture below was mine and Ben's way of meeting both of our desires on a date night... He got to watch football on the 8 million screens at Buffalo Wild Wings, and I got to curl up at the end of the booth and read a book.)

I'm still a Mama. I mean, I'll forever be a Mom now, but it's really the main part of my life right now. I love a lot of things, but I love these kids at the top of the list, and I am so thankful that God has given me these babies. They take so much of my time and energy, but they truly are an enormous joy and a tremendous gift. Sophie (four) took the picture below. I love that she takes pictures now that are actually somewhat decent. I love seeing the world through her eyes... and seeing pictures that include me! Brielle is shaking around a DVD in the picture. Hm, maybe this is why our Veggie Tales DVD has a ton of scratches and no longer works.

Lyla's favorite place to be is on my hip. Brielle's is too, but she has the poor middle child syndrome going on, which means that she usually doesn't get to be on my hip. She also weighs 30 pounds. That's a lot to carry on a hip.

The warm weather is sadly leaving, but we ate it up for all it was worth. It's been a good summer and fall. And Lyla likes the Ergo carrier more than either of my other girls ever did, so it was nice to get some use out of it. And Brielle is always barefoot. 

These two are forming a sweet friendship. I love it. They fight a lot too, though.

I also have been doing a small editing side job lately which has been super fun and totally up my alley. I am a total English nerd, and I always thought it would be fun to have an editing job. This is my first one, so I guess we can say I'm living the dream.

And I truly am. God has been so kind in countless ways to me. I'm so thankful that we're not finished until we're finished. I'm still alive, so He's still working in me to challenge me, to encourage me, to grow me, to break me. And I'm still alive, so I still have opportunities to find new things that I am good at and that I love.

I'm the same me as always, really. But every day is new. My opportunities, my reactions, my expectations, my skills, my knowledge, His mercies. Praise God for making us new. I'm so thankful that he can bring to life what is dead. Isn't that truth just astounding? He can give life to what has died, and He has and He does!! I will never get over that truth.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad God chose you and Ben for each other. And I'm so thankful to have you as my third daughter. Your words bless my heart. I love you! Mom M