Friday, October 09, 2015

Sisterhood and Brotherhood

“I don’t believe an accident of birth makes people sisters or brothers. It makes them siblings, gives them mutuality of parentage. Sisterhood and brotherhood is a condition people have to work at.” Maya Angelou

Are my kids too old to be bribed with popsicles so they'll sit in one spot and let me take their picture? Absolutely. Did I do it anyway? Why, yes, I did.


(This would be a very fake laugh given specifically for my camera.)

(Oh, look! Her fake smile has emerged into something resembling a real smile! Camden? Not so much.)


I'm honestly not sure if it's tougher to be the oldest or the youngest in this duo. Being big brother/little sister both have challenges. They recently had a "moment" that I wanted to jot dot down I wouldn't remember, mostly because I hope it's the first of many.

While playing soccer outside together, Rory had wronged Camden, and he chose to walk away rather than engage her (hello, progress!!). After the tears had been shed, punishment handed out, apologies given, Rory asked if she could talk to Camden privately on the front porch. 

I, of course, camped outside the door with my ear pressed to the wall in an effort to hear the conversation. And I listened while Rory cried and poured out all her feelings (so. many. feelings.) and attempted to explain to Camden how he has hurt her feelings over the last few months, asked for advice on friendships and school. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry as I listened to them so I did a little of both. Rory was so brave to let her deep emotions flow out to the one who honestly has the power to hurt her the most, and Camden was so mature to actually listen and offer brotherly advice. 

Did this exchange bring about lasting change in their relationship? The fact that I had to bribe them to sit together should answer loud and clear that the answer is no. But I have high hopes that they'll both look back on this day in the future and realize it was the beginning of a friendship.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Snapshot #23

Outside my window:
We had our first taste of cold weather with rain and 50 degrees over the weekend (Rory had a soccer game in the middle of that), but it has been back to the mid-80's this week.

Is my scrapbooking worth the time/effort/energy/money, etc. Because of the whole cancer-I-might-not-be-here-when-the-kids-are-grown thing, I put alot of internal pressure on myself to document everything. Is it worth doing just because I enjoy it? Does it matter if I'm not the most creative scrapbooker? Is anyone going to care if I've taken pictures of our life? Where are all these albums going to be stored when the kids are grown?? I think I've come to the conclusion (again) that it's a worthwhile hobby, but one I shouldn't stress out about if I can't get to it.

Thankful for: 
this sunrise


Oh, definitely kid clothes.
To stay caught up on laundry/housework. Things are kinda sorta surface clean right now, but don't look too closely.

Playing the piano; such a stress reliever!

To get back into a photography groove; I am very out of practice.
Dinner plans: 
Leftover roast and potatoes

 Future plans I'm looking forward to:
 Fall break next week. Okay, so it's not fall break for me, but Brian and I are getting away for the weekend and that's a very good thing!

In the kitchen:
A little of this and that. I did make our first soup of the season over the weekend (a potato, ham, and corn chowder if you're wondering) and I mixed up this cannoli dip for a church women's event Sunday night (it was a huge hit!).

Survivor (this is still a favorite, even after 15 years), The Voice (love watching this with the kids), The Grinder (watched the premiere last week and thought it was too funny)

Snacking on: 
 Frozen grapes - I have become addicted in the last few weeks

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
 For the Love by my BFF Jen Hatmaker (highly recommend)
If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Not Finishing (because there are alot of these):
Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead
 The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (this seems totally up my alley, right? just couldn't get into it)
The Martian by Andy Weir (I might come back to this one)
Unbroken (the second time I've tried to make it through)

Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman by Jon Krakauer 

I'm off work today so I ran a few errands this morning; I've spent way more time than I should just wasting time on the computer; photoshoot this afternoon, then small groups at church tonight.

Two recent photos:
Notice how Camden's head is out of the frame, but mine isn't? That's because he won't stop growing.

She may have wanted this furry pink coat during our shopping trip last week, but she did not come home with it.

Friday, October 02, 2015


I cleaned out Camden and Rory's closets this week now that our temperatures have started dropping. Rory officially has 1 denim jacket (thank you, mom), 2 hooded sweatshirts, and uniform pants/polos. Camden's closet didn't fare much better although he has a pair of high-water jeans and a couple of button-up plaid shirts to go with his uniform pants/polos. My, how times have changed. I can remember a time when their closets were bursting with adorable clothes.

Unfortunately, they are past the point where I can place a big Gymboree order and make them wear whatever I want so we spent a little time shopping yesterday and we're headed out again this afternoon. Camden acts as if I've asked him to run a marathon when I need him to try on an article of clothing, and this is Rory's idea of subtle.

In the words of Jen Hatmaker, "Jesus, be near."

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Taking Another Deep Breath

It may have taken 4 hours in the Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center waiting room yesterday, but I finally got in to see Dr. C and received the news that my scan shows not only a few less tumors but a little shrinkage on one or two spots. I'm glad I didn't spend time worrying over scan results these past few days because that would have been a complete waste of time! 

Brian says we can give complete credit to God because we certainly can't give credit to my inconsistent medicine taking skills. As in, I didn't have the heart to let Dr. C know yesterday that I didn't need a Tamoxifen refill because I'm so far behind on taking 2 pills/day.

We're off schedule for the rest of our week with re-arranged music lessons, early dismissal today for Grandparent's Day, and no school the rest of the week (don't ask me how I feel about this). I'm working from home tomorrow, which is a good alternative to trying to find a sitter for the kids. Camden is officially too old for daycare at school. 

Today we're taking it easy. And by taking it easy I mean that we went to the grocery store, post office and pharmacy before noon, and I'm now playing referee to Camden and Rory's bickering. However, I was smart and stopped for iced coffee on the way home (since I didn't get to celebrate #nationalcoffeeday yesterday) and I plan to turn the music up loud enough that I can't hear the arguing and spend some time with my photos and scrap supplies.


Friday, September 25, 2015

Taking a Deep Breath

Can you feel me exhaling as the weekend rolls around? Our family feels a bit like we've just completed a marathon. The last 2 weeks have been two of the busiest I can remember, but we've made it. Maybe not thrived, but we've more than survived and that's good enough.

(Seriously, how do people maintain this kind of schedule for months on end?)

Not only has Brian had parent teacher conferences every. single. night. (for 2 weeks!), but I worked for nearly 60 hours in 4 days last week, worked the church Riverfest booth, won 2 soccer games, celebrated Rory's 9th birthday, and managed all the regular work hours, practices, activities, day-to-day life, etc.

Tonight is Brian's last parent/teacher conference; the 12-week Bible Study I've been leading/hosting at our house ended last night; Brian starts a new schedule (he will only be teaching reading from this point forward instead of 5 subjects), and I am hopeful that we can all just catch a breath. The kids are cranky from lack of schedule and free time, the adults are cranky from lack of sleep and have bloodshot eyes with bags under them (which is never a good look), and all 4 of us are looking forward to a little more breathing room in our schedule over the next couple of weeks. Life will still be busy, but not quite moving at the frantic pace we have muddled our way through recently.

I am off work today and have put aside the house and laundry (it can't get much worse in one day anyway) and spent some time starting a new Bible study on prayer. I've scrapped Week 38 in Project Life; I'm drinking a Starbucks cold-brew coffee; and I have the new Hillsong album playing throughout the house (thank you, Spotify).

How about a few pictures?






Bring on the weekend!