Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tuesday Night Blues

Today is just one of those days where I feel like if my plate gets any fuller, it just might break. I try to be everything to everyone but some days it's just so hard to keep up the pace. I could use a little break from all the stresses of life. Maybe I should go spend a day at a spa or something. I think that's what I need.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Piano stories

I remember as a young girl I use to love playing the piano. I think I started lessons at around 10 or 11 and played until I was about 16. One of my biggest regrets in life was quitting. But for now I am just happy to be able to sit at my daughters side, guiding them and motivating them as they learn all about quarter notes and eighth notes and the meaning of fortissimo or pianissimo or legato. When they started taking lessons last year I thought I would never be able to help them because it had been so long since I played. But it's amazing how the mind can store information. In many ways our brain is like a file cabinet. You can file information away and forget about it and then go back and retrieve it whenever you want. You may have trouble finding it, but it's there. You just gotta search until you find it. While I'm definitely not at the level I once was, I am getting there slowly but surely. During my slow moments or "senior" moments as we now call them, I find myself turning to Lindsey for a little help. She takes her flute and piano lessons seriously and is always striving to play her best. To say I'm proud would be an understatement. Nikki also strives to do her best. I am so proud of her too. She is doing so well. There are occasional struggles with sticking with a particular piece until she has mastered it to perfection. I think she has taken after me in that respect. But she is learning the art of patience. Not an easy task for a 6 year old. She sometimes will get frustrated when she makes a mistake. It can get pretty dramatic when she gets mad and puts her head down with her arms crossed in front of her and starts crying. As I give her my little pep talk she drowns out my words with her cries of "I can't do it" or "I don't want lessons anymore". I sometimes struggle with how to handle the situation. I don't want to push her or pressure her too much out of fear she'll grow tired and will want to quit. But on the other hand I want my daughter to have this gift. I want her to have her music to turn to when she is happy or sad. I would be doing my daughter a great disservice if I let her quit. What would that teach her? that when life gets rough, it's time to give up? No way!!! My well meaning parents let me quit piano lessons because it was getting tough and I just wasn't focused enough. But I am here to tell you that we all look back on those days and wished we had handled things differently and made better choices. Things are different now. I have my girls and I plan on keeping those doors of opportunity open for as long as possible.

Friday, September 19, 2008


I've learned that no matter how hard I try to plan things out life just happens and can really, I mean really throw you an unexpected curve ball. Stuff can happen and you think someone is playing a joke on you and you're sitting there waiting for the punch line. Only sometimes there is no punch line and reality is what it is. But the thing that I am always in awe of is God's never ending presence in my life. I've lost count of the many times He has shown me His perfect grace even when our family is facing the most challenging moments. I strongly believe in the power of prayer and that all things happen for a reason. Of course when things are happening to us or to our loved ones, we ask why? Why is this happening now? Haven't we dealt with enough already? But I really have no right to queston or judge Him. Instead I step back and look at the big picture and realize that God's hand is at work here and sometimes He lets things happen not to hurt us but to build a stronger faith in Him and to trust in Him alone.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I don't consider myself a good cook. In fact I try my hardest to prepare what everyone likes but it's hard when you have picky eaters. I try to cook healthy as often as possible. So I was happy when I found the following recipe for turkey meatballs online at http://www.recipezaar.com/. In Lindsey's words they were "excellent".

Turkey Meatballs

1 lb. lean ground turkey
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs

Directions: Mix all the ingredients and form into approximately 20-30 meatballs. Coat the pan with veggie oil (I use organic extra virgin olive oil). Cook the meatballs until they are nicely browned. I served it over organic spaghetti and topped it with organic spaghetti sauce.


Friday, September 12, 2008

"From My Heart"

Sometimes kids do things that can really test your patience or make you want to step outside and take deep breaths while you count to ten. Heaven knows I've had plenty of those moments. There have even been times when I've lost my cool with my kids. But today Nikki did something that would make me forget about the dirty dishes, the scattered toys, the three loads of laundry waiting for me and all the crankiness that came with it. As soon as she came home from school she had it in her head that she wanted to write a "story" about her family. She got some paper and some crayons and went right to work. When she was finished she proudly showed me her story. My heart just overflowed with emotion. When I asked her "where did this come from?" she answered, "from my heart". Here are some pictures I took of each page. Some of it may be hard to read so I've type it out to make it easier.

"There once was a girl she was kind and sweet. She had a big sister and she was eleven. They both loved each other very much. They got along most of the time and some day they will become doctors. Once they become doctors they will half to help a lot of peolpe even our parents. They love us and hoping to help them. We love them to and we are hoping to do the same thing. Once we get old we are going to have grandchildren. And we are going to love them very much as we love are mom and dad. Every one is suppose to love God are family does love God very much and we love Him. Jesus died on the cross for our sins but some people are still sining but hopfully they will stop. People must stop sining. A lot of people do not beilive in God. But some day they will."

Monday, September 8, 2008

Spiders and Rolly-Pollies Oh My....

One of Nikki's favorite pastimes is searching for insects. Outside the front of our house we found spiders and rolly-pollies. She likes looking at the spiders from a distance but she isn't big on letting them crawl up her arm like she is with rolly-pollies and ladybugs. I can't stand spiders myself. As a kid I still remember Gonzalo chasing me with a spider-filled jar around the house. Ewwww.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Rainforest Cafe

Celebrating my dad's 78th birthday. Actually it was yesterday but we celebrated today.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Monday, September 1, 2008

Look mom, no floaties!!!

Nikki was so proud of herself for finally ditching her floaties. She is much more comfortable in the water now and just decided to take them off and swim like everone else. My big girl!!

Here is a video of the kids at play at their tio Gonzalo's house.