Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What a Difference a Week Makes

True to form... with every down comes an up, and with every up there is always a down!
The past 2 weeks have had smiles, tears, running, sitting, laughing, yelling, quiet, noise, fun, and some not so fun times!! You would think that I would know this by now? I would learn to wait out the bad cause I know the good is right around the corner!! But in the thick of it, I sometimes forget to keep my head up and I am so focused on the bad, my eyes avoiding contact staring straight down cause that's how I roll when I am stressed out, it's my M.O. when I am just barely muddling thru! But when I do look up, when I do decide to refocus my eyes I see what I should always see... another day, another chance to redo or start again, and looking in the right direction I see the good that is about to turn the corner and rock my world!

That what this week has been... eyes straight up, focused on the good... looking and seeing the precious good that is filling my days with opportunity, redo's, chances to just sit still and know that everything is the way it should be.

We have played in the backyard after family dinner, soaking up every last ray of sun and the cool breezes that the days have been giving...
 This is the goodness I was talking about... totally rocked my world!

We did homework with the doors and windows open...
Some of the best memories I can recall are of spring afternoons when my mom would open windows and we would run from the front yard to the back and then over to neighbor's houses! Nothing beats the scent of a spring afternoon...
Well... maybe a popsicle and your best dog beats the smell of spring?! All of that together is some sort of awesome goodness, I tell ya!

I even got to see my hubby in the middle of the day, and not on a weekend...Whoa! I so dig the peace and stillness our house has in the midst of bussle! The kids can be playing, the dog panting and running around, TV on, sink water going... yet if we are all home, I feel stillness of heart and a peacefulness that makes me smile!

Little things make me happy, when goodness comes knocking...
Rain boots left out and a new bird feeder... who knew they would help bring spirit's up!?

I decided to change out our bed linens... for too many years than I'd like to admit, we have had a dark comforter and basically dark tones in our master bedroom... This week, I took steps to change that! Time for some color around these parts!!! Teal, blues, and light yellowish-brown to be exact! It's a slow process... but I will transform this room by summer!! Happiness...

I got crafty...
I haven't really been using my craft gene lately... but when I did these last minute/hurried projects, I can't tell ya the happiness high it gave me! It is teacher appreciation week at little man's school... making things for these sweet ladies is a goodness given! They are awesome!

Lastly... as I opened big boy's backpack yesterday, I saw this...
It wasn't an assignment, not a required project or writing essay where he was made to put to words why he loves us... He said he did this during free time! HELLO Goodness! Why yes, Happiness... I hear you knocking!!! There isn't a person on God's green earth that wouldn't smile after reading that!!

I have learned my lesson... touche yin and yang! With good comes bad, and with bad ALWAYS comes good! You just have to keep your eyes up and look in the right direction to catch it ;)

Always - Abbey

Thursday, April 19, 2012

1 year

It's been exactly one year since I Put It Out There with my first step into the blog world! 
I was nervous, unsure, excited, and oblivious to what I was actually getting myself into! Needless to say, all of my apprehensions were squashed the minute I hit 'Publish Post' and have been continued to be diminished with every post I put up... mainly because of the love I have felt from friends, family, and strangers who have read my words, looked at my creativity and smiled back giving me a thumbs up while imparting kind words that I will carry in my heart forever! 
My only hope when starting this blog was to have a place to consistently put my thoughts down so that I could reflect back and grow individually! Well... I got that times a zillion! I made new friends, connected with old ones, opened up more than I ever thought I could... and even looked back with astonishment as to how much of my own crazy self I actually shared!!! I am so glad I took this step...

Looking forward... I plan to blog more, print and bind my past year so that I can have it forever and share it with our boys! I want them to have a piece of me, something they can read thru and see me as someone other than "Mom"! Here's to another year of sharing...

Always - Abbey

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Little Tid-Bits and TMI...

I am sure that everyone is like me, they have little inside jokes with themselves, nuances that inhabit their personalities that might make others laugh, smile, want to know them better or on the flip side, make them want to walk quickly in the other direction if they saw u coming!
Everyone is different, and it is in those differences that I am trying to teach our boys comes the greatness that is life. No person is better than the other just because they have cool hair, or can seamlessly kick a soccer ball, draw an awesome robot, or owns all the fancy toys a person could wish for! Each and every person is made perfectly, imperfectly and fits the purpose only he or she was made for! It's a hard lesson to teach, no less embrace in my own life sometimes!
Who doesn't want their kids to be strong, self-motivated, and self-loving adults...? It's hard to look into the eyes of this little person that is part of you when they ask, 'Mom, why am I left handed when all the other kids aren't? Why am I so short? How come I can't kick the ball the way he does or have that person as a friend or why won't this person talk to me because I don't play football? The questions are at times innocent and just part of having an inquisitive child, but sometimes I can see the wheels spinning and the look of feeling less than in his eyes...
I feel like that if I can give my kids the confidence that I lacked thru my childhood from time to time, and lack even now in my adult life... I will have done right by them as a Mom, as an example, and hopefully as a friend!

Learning to love yourself, in spite of all your quirks is something that our world doesn't make easy! It is human nature to compare, contrast, and over think who you are compared to who you want to be or who your neighbor is!! So, to practice what I preach to our little men... I am going to embrace all the little tid-bits about myself that some people may know, and some may giggle to realize!! Here goes nothing... like it or not... TMI maybe, but it's me so I'm not ashamed! HA!
I am a faithful JT fan... I love boy bands...NSYNC and NKOTB are my favs! I have seen NKTOB in concert more than any other band...

I have extremely thin hair.. like so thin that when it is wet, I look bald! I hide it well with hats, up do's and headbands!

I love fresh fruit... the crunchier the grapes, the better!!

I have a sassy mouth, but an insecure spirit... I believe in kindness and try to be kind, but I doubt people's kindness toward me. I love lots and lots of friends, but secretly long for one best friend who wants to know me better than anyone else!

I am an over the top perfume and scent person... I love to smell someone when they walk by me, I drench myself in scented lotions and perfumes, and I always have a scent burning in the house!

It took me 34 years to read! I hated reading all my life, but forced myself to embrace it 2 years ago and now find a respite in it that I can not describe!

I am an over organizer, and I constantly straighten up things everywhere I go.. chairs pulled out from the table drive me nuts:
Now.. doesn't that look better??

I don't deal well under pressure, and I procrastinate on anything that stresses me out! I will wait until the last minute to do something I know I could have done months ago just because of fear and an undeniable tendency to underestimate myself!

I love to match.. socks to shoes, shoes to shorts, shorts to shirt.. even my underwear, I love to match it all!! It's obsessively weird.. but makes me smile thru the day!
See that thin line of teal in my sock, it matches my shoes... and I love it!

I am 5'4 and I weight 138... I wish I was 5'7 and/or weighted 125! I have been considered short or the wrong size throughout my whole life, especially in sports... it errks me to no end!

I love lists.. I have them everywhere! Displayed in the kitchen, in my wallet, on my phone, stuck in my car... everywhere!!!

I feel more confident in workout/gym shoes... always have!

I love an organized refrigerator...

 I love shopping at Aldi.. mostly because I can sack my own bags! I love packing them and organizing all the food according to food groups!
 Throwing out trash and recycling gives me a purging sense of power!

I write much better than I talk or express myself verbally! I would much rather text, write letters, and communicate thru written form than talk face to face!

I have a new love for cooking..
 And, I could watch the Food Network nonstop, all day long!!! Especially this show...

I come from a big family but often feel lost within in it! I love being in big groups and can often times be the center of attention, but more than not I find myself choosing to sit back, watching and listening more than being in the mix of it!

I love the smell of fresh cut grass and the breeze coming thru an open window.. always makes me think of being a kid and growing up!

Music speaks to me! There are songs that can instantly trigger tears, a smile or a pain staking need to yell at someone! I listen to music when I am sad or need motivation... and I love listening to Christian music when I feel lost!

I love our front porch! I will always pull to have a porch in whatever house we live in... I love looking at houses and thinking of ways to make our home more homey! I am a peeper of houses... especially at night, if blinds are left open and I am driving by, I will try to see what's inside! And, no I am not looking for people, just details of what the house looks like... paint colors, furniture, lighting, you name it and I will peep at it!!

Lastly, I am an over thinker... Many people think our boys get their abilities to analyze from my hubby (and they may) but I secretly over think everything! I will admit I am a 'leap before thinking' kinda gal, but believe me once I leap my mind is in full swing and I am churning out ways to do more, change directions, see more, leap higher, go further, or be bigger! 
But I have learned that in any leap comes doubt and worry... comparison and contrasting angles of movement! It only took me 36 years to realize it's OK to do that.. to leap even if others aren't, to leap when others ask you to, to leap alone when you are afraid to... but in the end to not lose your sense of self in the process! I am different, I don't look or act like my friends or neighbors... and if my boys can see me embrace those differences and see me leap anyways, then I have done right by them!

So there it is.. the good, the bad, and the ugly/funny.. or fugly! TMI and all!

Always - Abbey

Sunday, April 15, 2012

So Enjoying The Small Things

Recently I started to read a book by a woman who I adore! I have never met her but her words speak volumes to me, her pictures make my mouth drop open at times, and I just know if we met that I would bug her endlessly until we became fast friends (yes, that is my way of making friends, flawed as it might be, ha)! I stalk her blog like no other, and I now love her book just as much!!
A quote jumped out to me as I read the other day... She was talking about her sister and how she described life as a 'crazy rushing current' and she said "You can hang on and get exhausted struggling to just stay alive, stuck to that rock, or you can let go and be carried by where it's going to take you..." All you have to do is let go.

I couldn't get the image of myself holding on for dear life to this boulder as the current (life) rushed past me, tugging and pulling at me from every direction. But then I thought, just let go! How easy does that sound? How deep does that leap look? It's enticing and frightening all at the same time... but then again, the choice is mine!! Not my parent's, not my friend's, not my husband's... I can't look to others to lead my way or hold my hand as I let go and let the stream of life lead me down it's path!

I think, as much as I hate to say it because I'm admitting I am getting old... but I think I am getting better with age! I find I have more purpose, more drive, more deliberate intent to do good. I'm aware and more wide eyed than I have ever been... and all I have to thank for that is life and where it has taken me. I do wish at times I would have had this perspective at a younger age, when our boys were ity-bity because reading Kelle's words about her experiences, good and bad, make me wish I had savored more rather than stressed! But, the lessons I have swam thru to stay within life's rushing waters (sometimes barely above drowning), have given me an amazing perspective that I am thankful for, a perspective that I think only comes with time.

I am by no means perfect, or even have a clue where I am going?! I wouldn't even say I am as bold to pretend for a second that I have it all figured out. But I do know that fault after fault and trial after trial, I feel like I am owning myself much more... and actually enjoying the water's ride way more than struggling thru it, holding on to every boulder I can grab! Some days I see that clearer than others... most days I am just happy to doggy paddle thru life. But on the days that I do rock a strong breast stroke or a crazy-ass butterfly like an Olympian, I can tell you I dance a jig and smile big! Because only I can determine my pace, my stroke, my style of swimming thru life!! Anything is better than gripping to a rock, being beat up by the flow of life's water, watching it rush past you!!!

This weekend, following a week of ups and downs... I totally enjoyed every minute of every small thing that possessed our family of four! Soccer games, dinner with new friends, laughter, front yard play time, lazy couch potato-ing, reading, watching, talking... So Enjoying The Small Things... and I think I ended the week swimming a crazy-ass butterfly!!!!
If you are ever in need of some peaceful, powerful things to enjoy... go check out this blog:

Happy Swimming
Always - Abbey

Friday, April 13, 2012

Negative to a Positive

After a long week of not really feeling like myself, stress, a hard working but MIA hubby, and a million things on my mind... I am going to leave the past 5 days behind with a Pitbull quote (yes I said, Pitbull... the Rapper, I like his beats... don't judge)!!!

"I took my life from Negative, to a Positive... Just want y'all to know that! And tonight, let's enjoy life.."

See... even rappers can impart life lessons!! Ha!
Here are my Negatives to Positives:

N: This week I haven't worked out but one day.  I have called subs for some classes and skipped running all together! P: I have allowed myself time to recoup and recharge... spending a lot of quiet time reading, and just being alone to think (or not) and chill! So needed that :)

N: I haven't cleaned my house all week... yes picked up here and there, but cleaned nothing!!! P: My sweet Momma gave me birthday $$ to spend on a cleaning lady this month, and she comes today. Total Positive!!

N: I have really eaten a lot of crap this week... always happens when I don't work out! P: I can see how my body has changed since using Herbalife and changing my eating habits! My stomach really turns it's ugly head at me when I over indulge! I've never been like that before!

N: I haven't crafted or volunteered at the kids schools, or done anything creative in a LONG time... P: I have spent time, silly time with the kids and by myself thru the week. By silly time, I mean time doing things that aren't over the top creative or special. Just time coloring, reading, laughing, watching mindless TV, and dancing! Sometimes it's the simplest things that fill our cups!

N: I have been short tempered and overly loud with our boys this week. My other half has been working hard this week for us and for his career, but that meant this Momma has been a 'single' running to events, practices, and church when normally I am a 'double'! P: This week has proven to me that my hubby and I are stronger than I thought. We made the most of the time (sometimes only 30 minutes) we had together and with the boys. We divided and still conquered!! And I couldn't be prouder for him as he stepped into a new realm of his career!!

N: I have doubted, worried, and over thought situations that I know are out of my control. I have withdrawn into my own insecurities and loathing. I have all too often passed my downfalls onto others. P: I took time to be alone and tried to not be so hard on myself! I am still learning who I am, even at 36. I realized that change is good, growth should be inevitable, and I shouldn't beat myself up for who I am!! I have taken time to repeat the mantra... I can't be all things to all people, in all situations! I can only be me!

N: I hid and didn't share Easter candy, candy I bought just for myself! And I ate it all P: I hid and didn't share Easter candy, candy I bought just for myself! And I ate it all :))) ha!!!!

I am going to stop there... cause that is just honestly hilarious! Who does that??? Me, and I am both happy it's over, but happy that it ALL happened!! 
Negative to a Positive... sometimes it's just how you look at it that matters!

Always - Abbey

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Family Time

I saw this quote in a magazine...
"Gardening is a way of showing that you believe in tomorrow"
- Anonymous

When I read it, I immediately thought of last Sunday and our impromptu family day...
First we all hit up Lowe's... and got the ceremonial jarrito's!
 Then the hunt for gardening supplies began...
 The boy's wanted to add some gnomes to the front beds this year...
We returned home for a quick porch picnic...
And then got down to the dirty, digging fun!!!
Even tho it was a family effort, we took full advantage of the child labor...
I had fun creating my porch pots, as I do every year!! My challenge is to keep them alive in the Texas heat... Last year I kept them blooming thru October!!!! We'll see if I can do that again this year?? 
I added some simple touches to the entryway that speak to the impending springtime season....

The whole time we enjoyed each other, the weather, and the dirt, this song played...
And it couldn't have been a better theme song for the day!! Everything is better when we are together... 
Even when time swirls along like a crazy carousel that won't stop turning, time spent together makes the ride enjoyable! 
And the above quote couldn't have summed it up better... I want our boys to believe in tomorrow! I long for them to savior their lives, and our time as a family! Stealing moments like these, when our busy schedule suddenly frees up is important so that they know being home together can be just as fun and purposeful as running from event to event, or soccer game to soccer game! I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate the coming week and prepare for Easter... planting hope, sowing love, and remembering that 'believing in tomorrow' is always 'better when we are together'!

Always - Abbey