Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Today I was watching my daughter play outside. She was running with her arms spread wide, her face up, just soaking in the sun and feeling the breeze on her face. Every now and then she would stop and pick up a handful of the colorful fallen leaves and throw them in the air. Then she would giggle with joy as the wind swept them away, whirling them in circles through the air.

"Mommy! Did you see that?" she would cry every time.

Then she would continue running around, occasionally stopping to pick up an interesting new item to show me or ask me about.

"Mommy, look at this!"
"What is this?"
"Look at the color of this one! It's so pretty!"
"Isn't this interesting?"
"Ohh! Feel this, it's prickly!"
"What kind of tree is this from?"

It brought me pure joy to watch her just be a child. She was enjoying the simplest pleasures in life, and was having a great time with things that didn't cost any money.

As I sat there watching her, I realized something. I wished I was her. Wouldn't it be nice to go back to the carefree days of youth? I would love to return to the days when I could take pleasure in the simplest things in life. How great would it be to not have the stresses of adulthood?

I can't help but wonder when we start to lose that innocence. When do trees, leaves, and bugs quit being entertaining? When does grandpa quit being so cool? When do you realize that daddy doesn't know everything? I mean, does it just suddenly happen, or is it more of a gradual change?

Unfortunately, I cannot return to my innocent days of youth. However, today I realized something that I need to do. I need to remember to stop and enjoy the simple things in life. Because sometimes, the simplest things in life, are the best things in life.

Today, I did just that. I sat back and watched my daughter play. I didn't worry about what I could get done while she was entertaining herself. I didn't think about bills or work. I just watched her.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Marriage Dissolved

"......Evidence is heard. Court enters and prepares Decree. Marriage Dissolved. Parties awarded...."

Wait a minute. I stop dead. Marriage Dissolved? I read it again. And Again.

Marriage Dissolved.

When I received the court documents today, I was not expecting what I got. I was expecting to read that we both appeared. I expected to read that the court was preparing the decree. I expected to read that my husband was to file the deed with the court. I expected to see that the case would be set for hearing after that was filed.

I did not expect to read those two words. "Marriage Dissolved."

So, after ten months of separation from my husband....uh....ex husband.....and after 6 months spent in court, my marriage is dissolved. Its over.


All day long, people keep asking me how I am doing. I guess the best way to do that is to tell you about how I spent my afternoon.

I have to admit, after the last ten months it is a huge relief that it is finally over with. I also have to admit that my first reaction was a giant shout of Joy. I was surprised at myself that at that moment there was no sadness or sense of loss.

My next reaction was to jump in my car and go to the social security office to change my name back to my maiden name. I had the paper in my hand for less than five minutes before I was in the car driving to do that exact thing.

I changed my name on face book, and updated my status to let everyone who has been there and prayed for me know that it was over.

I called my mom. I called my best friend. I talked to my dad. I was doing good.

I had a "celebration" dinner with my roommate. Then, we came home and my brother called.

I love my brother. He lives 5 hours away, but somehow has the best sense of how I might be doing. He just seems to know and understand. He knew that I would be relieved. He knew that I would be happy. He understands that I didn't want this, but I have been forced to deal with what life has given me. He seems to understand that even though I am happy about this, it is not what I ever wanted. He also knew that I would eventually break down.

After I hung up the phone with my brother, I did cry a few tears. They were half because I wished he was here. I miss him. The other half was the finality of it all starting to sink in.

I took a nap. I had started getting a headache about 15 minutes after I received the news in the mail. So the nap accomplished 2 things. It helped to tone down the headache, and it helped me hide from the emotions that were starting to form. The emotions that I have been hiding for months now.

After the nap, I watched Letters to Juliet with my Roommate. Now, she is in bed and I am left alone with my thoughts. Trying to sleep seems to make them worse, so I am doing the only thing I know how to do to work through those emotions. I am writing.

So the question remains. HOW AM I DOING?

I am happy.
I am relieved.
I am sad.
I am angry.

I have shouted for joy.
I have celebrated.
I have mourned.
I have cried.
I have broke down.

I feel overjoyed at the thought of the long ride being over.
I feel excited because I have a full life of wonderful things ahead of me.
I feel like I have failed.
I feel like I could sleep for days, and yet can't seem to close my eyes.

It is exciting. It is sad. It is bittersweet.

Funny how a short sentence, only two words, can change you in an instant.

Marriage Dissolved.

So that is where I am at. It has been twelve hours since I found out my marriage was officially over and I have experienced almost every emotion you could possibly think of. That is how I am doing.

This is not the end, just the beginning. The first day of the rest of my life. I am gonna keep doing what I have been doing and living my life for my kids, and for myself. Taking it day to day, step by step. God will get me through it. I have no doubt He will. God is good and He has some AWESOME things in store for me. That is what gets me through the day.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Baking Cookies with Christina

Recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies (with no nuts and with White Brown Chocolate Chips, as I was told specifically many times.)

Step 1: Mix the 2 1/4 c Flour, 1 tsp Baking Soda, and 1 tsp Salt in a small bowl.

Christina: "Mommy, why do you put salt in cookies? Cookies are supposed to be sweet."
Me: "Because the recipe calls for

Step 2: Beat 3/4 c Sugar, 3/4 c brown sugar, 1 tsp vanilla and 1 c butter in a large bowl.

Christina: "That's a lot of sugar mommy."
Me: "Yes, Christina. That's because cookies are supposed to be sweet."

Christina: "But there is salt in there."
Me: "Yes, I know there is salt in there."

Step 3: Beat in 2 Large Eggs, one at a time.

Christina: "Mommy, I can do that I know how."
Me: "Okay Christina, I will beat it while you put in the eggs."

Christina: "
Oops, I don't think the shell is supposed to get in there."
Me: "That's okay, I will get it out."

Step 4: Gradually mix dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.

Me: "Christina, I am gonna mix it while you put a little bit of the flour into my bowl. Can you do that."
Christina: "Yes, Mommy. Like this?"
Me: "A little bit more than that at a time."
Christina: "Okay. Like this?"
Me: "Well, kinda. I didn't mean pour the whole bowl in there."
Christina: "Will it still taste like cookie dough?"
Me: "Yes. It will all mix together the same."

Step 5: Mix in One 12 oz bag of Chocolate chips.

Me: "Okay, Christina. We are going to put in half of the Brown Chips and half of the White ones."
Christina: "Okay, Mommy. I got it."
Me: "Oh Christina! I said half not all!"
Christina: "Sorry, Mommy."
Me: "Th
at's okay. We like lots of Chocolate chips in our cookies anyways."

Step 6: Put the cookies in spoonfuls onto the cookie sheets.

Christina: "Mommy can I lick both spoons when we are done?"
Me: "No Christina, there are
raw eggs in cookie Batter."

(Christina licks the spoon anyways, and proceeds to try and use the same spoon to scoop up cookie dough.)

Me: "Christina, WAI
T! You have to get a new spoon. You can't use the same spoon after you lick it. Other people are going to be eating these."

(Christina get
s a new spoon and continues to help put the dough on the cookie sheets. This time she learns her lesson, and licks her fingers instead. Then continues to try and use the same fingers to help out.)

Me: "Christina, you need to wash your hands. You cannot lick your fingers and then stick them back in the cookie dough."
Christina: "Okay mommy. Why?"
Me: "Because other people don't want your germs."

(Christina washes her hands and then licks the spoon again.)

Me: "Christina! Get a new spoon please."
Me: "Christina, please wash your hands again."
Me: "Get a new spoon."

Step 7: Bake the cookies for 9-11 minutes at 375 degrees.

Me: "Logan, this is hot."
Logan: "Mommy, hot! hot! hot!"
Me: "Yes Logan I know. Good job!"

(I proceed to clean up as the kids Patiently wait for the cookies.)

Christina: "Logan do you want Chocolate Chip Cookies?"
Logan: "Hot, Tina Hot!"
Christina: "Yes, I know Logie the oven is hot.....Mommy are the cookies done yet?"
Logan: "Hot! Hot! Hot!"
Me: "Yes, Logan, the oven is hot. Christina the cookies aren't done yet. You have to be patient."
Logan: "Eat a cookie?"
Christina: "Logan, you have to be patient. The cookies aren't done yet."
Christina: "Mommy, can I have a cookie yet?"
Logan: "That's hot."

(I think you get the picture.)

Step 8: ENJOY!

****We have about 3 dozen White and Brown Chocolate Chip Cookies (with no nuts) to share with anyone that wants some. I cannot guarantee that they don't have egg shells in them, or that they were not put on the cookie sheet using a licked spoon or fingers. What I CAN promise you is that they have LOTS of Chocolate chips in them and that they were made with lots of love.****

Starts With Goodbye

This song has meant a lot to me over the last year. Thought I would just share it with everyone.

"Starts With Goodbye"
by Carrie Underwood

I was sitting on my doorstep,
I hung up the phone and it fell out of my hand,
But I knew I had to do it,
And he wouldn't understand,
So hard to see myself without him,
I felt a piece of my heart break,
But when you're standing at a crossroad,
There's a choice you gotta make.

I guess it's gonna have to hurt,
I guess I'm gonna have to cry,
And let go of some things I've loved,
To get to the other side,
I guess it's gonna break me down,
Like falling when you try to fly,
It's sad, but sometimes moving on with the rest of your life,
Starts with goodbye.

I know there's a blue horizon,
Somewhere up ahead, just waiting for me,
Getting there means leaving things behind,
Sometimes life's so bitter sweet.

I guess it's gonna have to hurt,
I guess I'm gonna have to cry,
And let go of some things I've loved,
To get to the other side,
I guess it's gonna break me down,
Like falling when you try to fly,
It's sad, but sometimes moving on with the rest of your life,
Starts with goodbye.

Time, time heals,
The wounds that you feel,
Somehow, right now.

I guess it's gonna have to hurt,
I guess I'm gonna have to cry,
And let go of some things I've loved,
To get to the other side,
I guess it's gonna break me down,
Like falling when you try to fly,
It's sad, but sometimes moving on with the rest of your life,
Starts with goodbye,
I guess I'm gonna have to cry,
And let go of some things I've loved,
To get to the other side,
Starts with goodbye,
The only way you try to find,
Moving on with the rest of your life,
Starts with goodbye,
Na na na na na na na.