Showing posts from February, 2017

Happy Birthday to my Mom!!!!

Today, my mom turns 65!!!!
Happy Birthday to You!!

Thank you for being the best mom to me...

 and the best Grandma to my kids...

Welcome to being a Senior Citizen!!

Assuming all goes as planned,

we will be in bright, sunny (or rainy, dreary) southern California in less than 24 hours.

Please pray that we make it through security.  I won't be able to update the blog for a while, so if you don't hear from me, we made it through!!!

Some fun updates...

1. Time with the Trainer
Chloe and I have loved working with the trainer.  She's so much fun, and it really does feel good to building muscle and strength.  Even our 4:30 wake up time has become completely doable.  We have so much fun that we made the boys jealous, and now, they work with the trainer once a week!!

I have been upfront saying that I've felt a little fluffy the past year or so.  I am so thankful to report that I've gotten my eating under control, and the weight is coming off!  I made myself a deal that when I hit my goal weight, I would buy myself something special.  Well, I'm getting close!!  Louis Vuitton, you are in my sights!!
2.  Teaching History!
I was so excited when I learned last Spring…

Three-thing Thursdays

Today's edition: 3 things that I'm choosing to not worry about.  (subtitle: I'm fighting worry about these things.)

1.  Leaving for Vacation on Saturday

In theory, all our paperwork is now in order.  But, Panama is a difficult place to leave.  The paperwork requirements change with some regularity, and there's no real way to find out exactly what's needed.

This week-long ordeal won't be settled until we get through security on Saturday morning, and I don't want to spend the next 36 hours feeling nauseous.

2. Our plans for next year.

I continue to not have the foggiest idea what is happening with a potential move.  Tony has a meeting March 9th that might answer some of those questions.  I just have to trust that there is plan, and that the Lord doesn't need me to know the details.


For the first time in my life, I can't think of something else I'm worrying about.  How bizarre is it that I've been sitting…

I like people.

I remember a pastor telling me one time that if you're going to work with people, you are going to have problems.  I understand that to be a true statement, but you also are going to have a lot more fun.  You're going to feel a lot more loved.  And, you're going to have people to love.   I know it is not Thursday, but it's my blog, and I want to do a three-thing Wednesday.  So, I will.

1.  My children.

I know that all the wise people say that you aren't supposed to be friends with your kids, but I actively, intentionally ignore that advice.  I firmly believe you can parent and still be friends. (Ask my Georgia-based bff- being friends with me requires a fair amount of parenting)
I just really happen to like my kids.  I like their hearts and their likes and their individuality and their minds and their fashion sense and their lego creations and everything else.  I really like hanging out with them.  I'm the odd parent who longs for my kids to be teenagers, so th…

Finishing well

As a high school teacher, I've dealt with my fair share of senioritis- that moment when formerly hard-working students become bums.  Each year it hits different students at different times and manifests in different ways.
As we teachers discuss the hows and whys and the what nows, it makes me question if I'm finishing well.  How often do I see a finish line and quit?  More often than that is hitting the middle mark and quitting, believing that the finish line is never going to come.
Do I parent Coralynn with the same focus as I did Chloe?  (I promise you my oldest would firmly tell you that Bitty's life is unfairly easy.)  Do I put the same attention into my marriage as when we were newlyweds because the struggles are now so old?  Do I still reach out to my friends, or have I stopped because it feels like I'm the only one trying?  Have I gotten lax in my relationship with Jesus because the race feels to long?  
I have no answers.  
I do have lots of excuses. 
I'm ex…

Thank you for the prayers!!!

Evening, everyone!

I only have a minute because I have to be asleep in 2 minutes!

The process with immigration seems to be heading the right direction.  Tomorrow, hopefully, we will have the final verdict.  At this point, it appears we will be able to leave Panama on Saturday for our much-needed vacation!!!!

I'll confirm with y'all when I know!!

Thank you SO much for the prayers- I can't tell you how much peace I've felt since Friday night.  It has to be the power of prayer!  (And keep praying that we make it out and back to the US safely)


Because I have to move on

For good or bad, I don't stay disappointed for very long.  Tony says I need my 15-second mental fit, and then I'm good with whatever the next plan is.  Today, I had plenty of opportunities to see the bright side of life.

This morning was the school's International Fun Fair.

I got to laugh with friends, students, and coworkers.  I got to eat Costa Rican food and count money.  

I got to enjoy sunshine and dunk tanks.  And when it was all over, I got to go home, take a shower, and and enjoy a nap.  A lovely Saturday morning/afternoon for sure.
Then, this evening, we went to Casco Viejo to celebrate a friend's birthday with friends and family.

Spending the evening with my beautiful daughters reminded me just how much I like when we are together.  We missed Carson, but he was happy to have some alone time after a morning of extroverting.

And Tony and I got to spend some much needed time as a couple.  Yes, the kids were there, but it just wasn't the same as a family din…

So disappointed

Lest you think my life always goes well, we received very bad immigration news today.  There is yet another requirement that has to be met before we can renew our paperwork.  The problem is not the difficulty of the requirement, but that we don't have enough time before our trip to get the whole process done.
Please pray.
For my kids' hearts. For my heart. For some financial recovery. For favor with immigration. For God to make a way where there doesn't seem to be one. For us to still get to go on vacation. (and for us to get back into Panama when it's over)

And, because today is just sucky, we found out that one of Coralynn's favorite friends is moving next week.
When it rains, it pours, and my umbrella broke last week,

A First!

For the first time since my kids went back to school, I was called to pick up a sick child.  How exciting is that?  Correct.  It's not very exciting.

Please pray for Carson.  It sounds to me like he got to experience a migraine.  I'm praying it's the only one he ever has.  He missed his first soccer game of the year because of it, so he's hurting and hurting!

Also, we are in the middle of an immigration mess.  I'll spare you the gory details, but if a miracle doesn't strike, we're going to be illegal come Monday!  And, since we fly out on the 25th, I'd very much like to have this whole situation fixed.


Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!!

This has to be one of my least favorite make-believe holidays.

SO much fanfare over something SO contrived, it's everything I don't want to be.

But (there's always a but), this year I've been pondering the whole thing.

It started yesterday afternoon when one of my students brought a tube of henna to school.  I love henna.  I love the art.  I love the brown tint.  I love the cool feel as it's applied to the hand.   I had to have my turn.

My amazing senior happily volunteered.  I showed her a picture online, and she went to work.  The result was amazing.  My plan was to take a picture and post it last night.  But, something stopped me. I wasn't ready yet.

This morning, at 4:30, I decided to finally take that picture.  Not in my dressy work clothes, but in my nasty gym clothes.

I love the picture not because I am a hand model, but because I love the contrast between the beautiful with the ugly.  My clothes often play off that contrast. …

Proud Momma

I'm going to be proud now.  Of my girls.

Chloe ran her first race this morning!!  She did 3 miles in about 30 minutes.  I'm so proud of her- not because she broke time speed records, but because she ran.  She's been working on getting herself into shape, and she's been really pushing her cardio.  By far, the best part of working out is the growing self of confidence that you earn.  And she is definitely thoroughly confident in herself.  How many 14-year-olds can you say that about?  So proud of her!

Then there's these two.  Frick and Frack.  Camilla and Faux Camilla. I'm not sure two sisters could be any more different and any closer than these two are.  We tease Camilla that she is going to have the BIGGEST mansion in heaven for how precious, sweet, long-suffering, and caring she is with Coralynn.  She likes to act like its a total burden, but then Coralynn will leave for and afternoon.  And Camilla will mope for an afternoon.  They remind me why I wanted my g…

Best Excuse Ever.

I couldn't blog last night, but I have the best excuse ever...

I was snuggling with world's greatest son who got home from his trip last night after having the most amazing time.

Three-Thing Thursday

Tonight's theme:  Three things I wish I knew...

1.  Where we are going to live next!

Last summer, we were told that we'd likely be moving from Panama.  I was fine with this, but the endless passing months are making me less interested in moving.  I'd love to be able to tell my children where they will be going to school next year.  I'd love to be making plans for pom pom and cross country try outs.

Instead, we are waiting.  Some days, it feels impossible to wait another minute to find out any information. (I'm accepting prayer.)

2.  Where I want to live next!

You would think with all the free time we've had to wait, I'd be plotting a perfect next location.  Nope.  I don't have any idea.  At this point, I could throw a dart at a map and move wherever it landed- except, that's not really true.  I have a whole list of places I don't want to live.  There are just too many places to live to use that as a good method for determining our next home.  I …

Ponder with Me

It is Wednesday.  
And, I'm in one of those pondering moods that often envelop me.
The Lord will give me a thought, and it is my job to tumble it around in my head until I understand what He has for me. 
(An aside: I always wanted one of those rock-polishing tumbler toys.  I marked it every year in the Sear's- or Penney's- Christmas catalog.  I never got one.  Someone really should talk to my parents.)
The past few weeks have seen many hurt feelings in my world.  Some I caused.  Some were my feelings.  My kids, my friends, my spouse, my students.  No one seems to be immune to hurt feelings.  I feel like my life has been consumed with helping hurting people.
Yesterday, the Lord gave me a thought.  It's the tumble thought, for sure.
What if you stopped worrying about not doing anything wrong and started focusing on doing it right.
Huh.  Ouch.
It made me think about how many times I let other people hurt because "I didn't do anything wrong." How often could w…

We're NOT better than you.

Do you read other people's blogs?

I'm was reading one today, and I thought wow, She teaches on money and parenting and fitness and marriage and ...

That got me wondering about my blog.  I wasn't questioning if I was as good as other people.  Not at all.  I've met me.  I've got a long way to go.

I was wondering if I come across as all that as other people.  Because if I do, I hate me.  I really, really can't stand people who present themselves as having it all together.  Not because I'm jealous, but because it's not true.  It's not possibly true.

Sometimes, you fail.

Yesterday, I had the distinct pleasure of getting to apologize to my 14-year-old because I had been a total jerk, and she had called me out on it.  #parentoftheyear

Today, I couldn't walk from here to there without wanting to cry or get into a physical altercation with someone. #hotmessaward

It's 8:47 pm, and I'm in bed.  With that stinky muscle rub on my back.  #Iknowyouarej…

It's Not My Fault!

Happy Monday!
We've been having some internet issues, so blogging wasn't really much of a possibility.  
But it appears we are up and running again!

This morning, Carson left for his school trip.  He is SO excited about getting the opportunity to go white-water rafting.  We did a little rafting in Colombia, and he enjoyed it, so I'm hoping it will be a fun way to spend a few hours.  Pray that he has a good trip.  They return on Friday which is a long time for my homebody son to be away!!

The girls, some friends, and I headed down to the pool this afternoon because violin lessons were canceled.  Coralynn had been working on a dive/flip thing, and today she turned it into a flip.  She's become quite the fish, and it has been the most fun watch her grow in confidence.  (I think that's my favorite part of parenting- watching my children realize how truly capable they are.   Raising confident, humble children who walk honorably among the world is pretty much my goal.)


Yesterday, my World Religions class started watching Schindler's List.  This is not a fun way for me to spend a week.

As a general rule, I don't go to movies.  I don't watch movies.  (Yes, my brother is a movie critic.  The irony is not lost on me.)

I am incredibly sensitive to movies.  Movies get in my mind, and I can't always get them out.  I don't want to watch violence.  I don't want to watch sex.  I don't want to watch children be neglected, abandoned, or abused.  I don't want to watch people suffering at the hands of other people.  I don't want to watch rape.  I don't want to watch children become orphans, or parents bury their children. I don't want to watch infidelity, and I don't want to watch it be glorified in the name of romance.  I don't want to listen to people swear.  And I certainly don't want to watch any of it for 2+ hours.  None of that is entertaining to me.  And, when you eliminate movies with these themes (…


Wait, Lisa, it's only Wednesday!!!

I know!!

But, thank God it's February!!!

January proved to be the month that refused to leave.

But, now February is here!!  February equals love and vacation!!!  In just 24 days, we're off for a week of family fun!!  More about that later!

I've decided it would be fun to set a new challenge for myself.  I've done pretty darn well with the blog-a-day plan.  And, Chloe and I never missed a day with the trainer.  I'm proud of myself.  It's been a dedicated month.

The question then becomes what should February's challenge be?  Originally, I was going to try being gluten-free.  Chloe started in January, and I feel like she's having good results.  Here's the problem.  A friend of a friend sent me Girl Scout Cookies.  How does one go gluten free when one has Girl Scout Cookies in the fridge?

So, do I go gluten free with a cookie allowance?  Or do I pick something else?

I'm absolutely not going to be gluten free …