Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Day 63: It's Not Business--It's Personal

We are going through something that's very sensitive and personal. I apologize for posting about it again, but I feel like I need to. I'm not sure who is reading this, but since it has become an interesting sort of journal, I feel like I need to be true to the Joyful Moments that really stick out each day. So, some days it's just going to be personal.

Today was overwhelming and exhausting. And the kind of day I wouldn't wish on any mother. We had to go through some hard things. Well, Sweet P did but the rest of us had to watch and even Little M struggled at one point.

Interestingly enough, the nurse referred to Sweet P as "Sweet Pea" the whole day. And she (the nurse) has the same name as my grandma, but the phlebotomist kept calling her my mom's name. And somehow all of those things brought me comfort. It may have just been the pregnancy hormones, but I think Heavenly Father somehow orchestrated all of it to help me out. My grandma passed away last year and my mom is out of the country. But through these weird coincidences I was able to feel the strength and comfort from them I would've liked. Everything just felt connected.

It's difficult to say exactly when my Joyful Moment came today because underneath everything is this complete emotional exhaustion. It was just so awful to submit my daughter to something that terrified and hurt her so much. But when the third IV finally started working after two hours, so we got to avoid yet another needle stick for the final blood draw, I think that may have been a Joyful Moment.

Taking her and Little M to Chuck E. Cheese's this afternoon was another Joyful Moment. I was seriously dreading going because I HATE that place. But it was what Sweet P requested when we told her we wanted to do something fun to make up for the horrible morning. Fortunately, hardly anyone else was there and it didn't seem as yucky as the one back in New England. So, relaxing and playing together as a family was a Joyful Moment.

Mostly, I'm just glad today is over. That even though it was horrible, the procedure was successful. And that we're all heading to bed soon.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments of any kind.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Day 62: Nesting

So, I've had this urge to totally stockpile our house with food for the last couple months. And it keeps getting worse. I finally realized, this is my "nesting" this time around. Normally, I go crazy cleaning. This time, I'm creating a food bank.

And tonight I made yet another double meal. As in, I cooked a batch for us to eat tonight and another that went straight into the freezer. One less meal I will have to figure out how to make while juggling a newborn and and two other kids.

We bought the chest freezer back in January for this purpose. But it stayed relatively empty for a while. Since it's easier to keep a full freezer cold than an empty one, HH began filling it with old milk jugs filled with water. I figured this wasn't to terrible since it was sort of like storing water as well.

But tonight when I placed the newly made meal in the freezer, I had to pull a milk jug out in order to fit it. And for some reason, that was a Joyful Moment. The freezer is pretty full with actual food and I might somehow survive those first few months postpartum.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments of becoming a hoarder!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Day 61: Mary, Mary Quite Contrary

That's right! Tonight we planted our first ever garden!

Well, we planted starts in a little tray that is locked up in the basement under a special lamp. It's too cold for anything to survive outside yet. Plus, we haven't actually cut out a plot for our garden. Minor details.

Even though we don't really know what we're doing, I'm sure things would have gone more smoothly had HH and I just done it all by ourselves. But last year my sister shared some advice that my father had given her when they started their garden: "Remember, you're growing a family--not a garden." And then I saw how excited her kids were to eat the vegetables they grew and couldn't wait to have a similar experience with our kids.

So, I decided it would be a perfect activity for our family night. It was a little messy and chaotic and I'm pretty sure we have some carrot seeds mixed in with our tomato seeds, but it was Joyful Moment watching the kids get excited to help. I'm really looking forward to their excitement when the seedlings start to grow and they get more of an idea of what we're doing.

And I can't wait to eat fresh, homegrown veggies!!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments of growth!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Day 60: Blessed Sunshine

This is us at the pond last year--it's not quite this green yet. Please forgive my little shaggy-haired man!

It appears that Spring might really be hear to stay (knock on wood--everyone keeps telling me they get snow in April all the time here) and the weather has been nice enough to go for a walk most evenings the last week or so. Normally, we take this around the neighborhood, but tonight I suggested going somewhere new.

When we first moved here we lived in a teeny tiny apartment. But it was in an excellent location. A beautiful pond with a bike path was literally in our backyard. We spend every evening out on that path. So, tonight I suggested we revisit our old home. It was so pretty and so much fun to be back.

Yesterday was a yucky day for me and Sweet P wasn't feeling well earlier today, but walking by the water and remembering how fun summer in was just the boost we all needed. Such a lovely Joyful Moment.

Wishing you all beautiful (and sunny!) Joyful Moments!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Day 59: Hiccups

That's what BB had when I woke up this morning. And they were pretty strong. So, I reached over and grabbed HH's hand so he could share in it.

And that was my Joyful Moment.

Pretty simple, I know. I think I tell him almost daily that I wish he could experience pregnancy for just 24 hours. Usually, I say this meaning that I wish he could experience all the discomforts and unpleasantries that come with pregnancy, so he could understand why I do the things I do. But I do feel bad that he misses out on the cool parts too. So, this morning it was fun letting him share in the experience of feeling little baby hiccups.

It's things like that that make me remember that this is a little person growing inside of me--and not just a life-sucking parasite. Whenever he has the hiccups I just want to hold him and give him comfort--even though I know "they" say that it doesn't bother babies at all. He had them for a very long time this morning and I felt really bad for him.

Still, it was really cute.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Day 58: Here Fishy, Fishy

So, a friend of ours keeps inviting us to go swimming with her and her kids. But the thought of getting both kids ready for that and then getting them back out, showered, dressed, and all after just wears me out. So, I keep declining. But I know the kids would love it.

Tonight after dinner, HH suggested that we take them swimming tomorrow. Having him there makes it much more doable, but our Saturdays are always so jam-packed already. So, I said, "How about we go right now?"

And we did.

This was my first time swimming while pregnant ever. I've heard it's fabulous and feels great. Maybe it's because I was sort of squeezed into my normal suit (I don't have a maternity one, but my other one felt fine out of the water), but I did not find it super comfortable.

Fortunately, the kids had a total blast and watching their fun and listening to their giggles made it all worth it. And, of course, provided me with a Joyful Moment. I try to still come up with fun activities and they do a pretty good job of entertaining themselves when I'm too tired (like when I passed out on the couch after lunch for a good 45 minutes today), but it felt really good to do something they love this much.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments in doing something you or someone you love really loves!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Day 57: Siblings

Those of you who know me know that I am horrible at making phone calls. Basically, I don't do it. This includes phone calls for setting up appointments (I have at least 3 of these I need to make right now), paying bills, returning phone calls, calling friends and family, etc. Basically, any type of phone call. I just don't do it.

And I frequently don't pick up when my phone is the one ringing. I can't really tell you why. I just don't like being on the phone much.

But tonight I was feeling a little out of sorts and really wishing I could call my mom. Unfortunately, that isn't possible right now as she is out of the country. So, I busied myself with making dinner and tried to ignore the feelings.

Then my cell phone rang and I actually went to answer it. Sweet P beat me to it and had a nice long chat with my little sister. Then Little M wanted a turn and while he was chatting away, my home phone rang. So, I answered that one and it was my big brother. Long story short, he conferenced my little sister in and we had a nice chat between the three of us.

My family and I are all quite spread out across the world, so any time we can get together I love it. And tonight, it was sort of like I got to hang out with the two of them. And it was that much better because I really needed my family tonight. So, thank you to both of you for thinking of me and doing what I'm so lousy at. And thank you for providing me with an excellent Joyful Moment talking and laughing with you. I love you both!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments from feeling loved by those you love!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Day 56: Love Trap

That was the name of HH's car when I first met him. And it ended up being exactly that for me. Or at least, HH did. I've been trapped in his love ever since.

Thus, today he was the source of many Joyful Moments. A part of this is simply because he's wonderful and I'm completely in love with him. But another part is that we're in the middle of writing the story of "How We Met" and reviewing our dating and the process of falling in love takes me back to all the giddiness and joy that brought. And just how wonderful falling in love with him felt.

I am one lucky lucky girl. And very blessed.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments from reminiscing over some of the best Joyful Moments you've ever had!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Day 55: Accommodating Kindness

So, we have to schedule an appointment for something (of a sensitive nature, so I'm going to be a little vague on the details here) that is only available in a city over an hour away from here. My OB/GYN kind of flipped out when I was explaining this to her, but then we were miraculously able to get the appointment scheduled for the next day, HH came with me, and everything was great.
And then they wanted a follow up appointment. And it's sort of urgent.

So, I got a phone call this morning telling me that the soonest they can get us in is April 19th. That is exactly one week before my due date. With the other two pregnancies, I was no longer pregnant one week before my due date. But even if I were, I'm pretty sure my doctor would be super stressed about that. So, I explained this to the girl who has been dealing with all of my needy phone calls of late and she said she'd see what she could do.

She called back this afternoon and somehow managed to get us in for next week. She apologized that it couldn't be sooner. But I overrode that with profuse gratitude. She was the source for today's biggest Joyful Moment. I've never met her, but thanks to her we will hopefully be through with a process that normally wouldn't have even begun for at least another month and then would have dragged on for a few more months. And because this involves one of my babies, I am indescribably grateful that the worry and stress will (hopefully) be over soon and that I don't have to fret over it for another couple of months.

And just in case tonight's post was too vague to make sense, hanging out with friends at the children's museum and getting to take this happy face home was another fun Joyful Moment.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments brought to you by kind strangers!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Day 54: Cutting Back

I've battled an exercise addiction off and on for the last several years. I was in college when I realized this and I've tried to keep it in check ever since. But I've sort of been in denial for the past few months of my pregnancy.

Little M was a gigantic baby. For me at least. 9 lbs. 2 oz. He came out ready to eat and then did that almost constantly for the next three months. We're talking, he'd eat for an hour then I'd get a half hour break, then he'd eat for an hour, I'd get a half hour break. And on and on and on. Day in and day out. And I can't begin to describe how exhausting that was. Indescribably so, really.

So, I've developed this paranoia about having another big baby. And somehow I got it in my head that as long as I kept pushing it at the gym, this wouldn't happen. I know that those two things aren't really connected, but I've never claimed to be a rational woman. So, I kept dragging myself to the gym and pushing myself to go harder. And then I'd get home and try to do my daily cleaning chores, take care of my kids, and make dinner. And I just felt so tired (and cranky) all the time.

So, I've known what the problem was for a while, but it wasn't until today that I was finally able to let go of this irrational fear that my baby will suddenly gain 5 more pounds if I don't push it as hard as I can at the gym. I still went, but I kept it light.

And I felt such a difference today! The billions of loads of laundry were so much easier to wash and put away. And I still had energy to make dinner (although, I kind of cheated by using my crock pot). And I'm just in a better mood all around.

So, I was more open to Joyful Moments because I had the energy to not ruin them by staying in a better mood. And it was sort of a Joyful Moment in being proud of myself for being rational about my workout and not feeling guilty for cutting back a bit. Overall my day was more joyful because I didn't feel quite so wasted tired all day.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments found in cutting back and giving yourself permission to take a break!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Day 53: Reading Rainbow

Sweet P reading with her grandma at 2 weeks old

HH and Sweet P have been doing "reading lessons" for several months now. They used to do one every night, but then life got crazy and now it's pretty patchy. However, these lessons have been extremely successful.

Tonight she read a relatively long paragraph story and was so proud of herself she came in to my room (where I was working on letter recognition with Little M) to read it to me. She did great! And she was so proud of herself. I loved it. And my Joyful Moment was found in watching her have a Joyful Moment showing me her progress.

At times reading lessons were a big stressful battle for the two of them, but I'm proud of them for pushing through it. She has always always always loved books and I'm so excited for her as she is starting to reach the point where she can read a bit on her own. It is so amazing watching her grow and develop!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments derived from someone else's accomplishment!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Day 52: Good Morning

HH had a basketball game this early this morning, but I had already been awake for an hour by the time he got up. That's just how third trimester sleep goes though, I know.

Fortunately, I was able to fall back asleep after he left. And then my dear sweet children quietly went downstairs to play--of their own volition--when they woke up. And I got to stay in bed until 8 AM. I don't remember the last time that happened!

I'm sure it would have been good for me if I could have slept solid that whole time, but instead I was kind of in and out. The good thing is, while I was awake I was able to think up some solutions to some major concerns that had me feeling pretty stressed last night. Getting ready for this third baby is so much more complicated! But I feel very blessed to have had that time this morning to rest, sleep, and problem solve.

And when I finally sat up and looked at the clock, I could not believe my eyes! Truly a Joyful Moment. And it put me in such a good mood that I decided to make HH's favorite apple pancakes for when he got home. And that spread Joyful Moments all around because the kids are big fans of pancakes too.

Wishing you all Joyful morning Moments!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Day 51: More Craving Satisfaction

I've been craving food from a fast food restaurant basically my whole pregnancy. I try to not give into those cravings because it's not very healthy.

But we are almost at the end of the pregnancy (!) and something came up that prevented me from having time to make dinner. And a new location of the place of my craving just opened up nearby and they were offering 50% off of everything on the menu tonight.


So, we headed over and ate to our hearts content.

And actually, the true source of my Joyful Moment came from just having some time to sit and relax and be together as a whole family. I didn't have to stress over making the food or cleaning it up (although, HH does the majority of this part). And everyone was happy with what they were eating and just happy in general. And it came at the end of a very busy, VERY chaotic day.

It was so exactly what I needed.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments of exactly what you need!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Day 50: I Changed My Mind

That is my right as a female.

And, I'm so proud of myself for doing this for 50 consecutive days!

Okay, back to changing my mind.

The Joyful Moment I was going to post about involved the fact that today was a beautiful, warm-ish day so the kids and I walked to the park and they got to play for a while. Until Little M landed on his head in the mud off the swing. But he was more bothered by the mud than anything else, so the Joyful Moment wasn't ruined.

However, I just experienced a Joyful Moment that topped that one.

I was tucking Little M into bed and he said, "I don't want you to go."

He says this to me every night. It's cute and sweet and I don't want him to think I don't reciprocate, so I try to come up with a good response every night. Tonight the best I could do was repeat back, "You don't want me to go?" And then I said, "You no want me to go?" And then for some odd reason I said, "No you want me go to?" Or something along those lines.

And Little M burst into the biggest fit of giggles--ever. It was so cute!

So, I just kept repeating it in different mixed up ways and he was laughing hysterically the whole time. And then it grew and I got a fit of giggles too. And I think that made his fit even worse and we just sat there and giggled for several minutes. Good hard belly giggles.

And it was fun. And my top Joyful Moment of the day.

Wishing you all giggley Joyful Moments!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Day 49: Fight for Your Right to Partay!

Well, that's the way we roll around here. Today was Little M's birthday. So, naturally, it was full of Joyful Moments. I love how easy it is to please children when they're young.

Here's a list of some of the highlights:
  • Seeing his excitement over green cranberry orange "cupcakes", as he calls them, for breakfast
  • And watching him blow out the candle I stuck in it
  • Hearing him proudly tell Kayli's music teacher that he's "free" today
  • His excitement over getting phone calls (and messages) from extended family
  • Hearing him exclaim, "Mommy, it's cute!" when he first saw the cake I made for him
  • HH coming home early and taking them on a walk so I could get things set up
  • Watching him eat about a hundred green crepes filled with strawberries, as he requested for dinner
  • Watching him open his presents--especially that dump truck I was so excited about (later he told me that was the very best part of the day)
  • Getting a "thank you" kiss
  • Watching him and Sweet P play quite happily with the new toys
But a great day like this also takes a lot of work (at least, for me). So, I'm really looking forward to putting my tired feet up and being done with all of it. I'm just so grateful things worked out so that he could have a very happy birthday.

Wishing you all a happy St. Patrick's Day full of green Joyful Moments!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Day 48: Mrs. Potato Head

I love mashed potatoes. But when I'm pregnant, I love love LOVE mashed potatoes.

Unfortunately, this is a lonely position to take on potatoes in my family. HH can take 'em or leave 'em and the kids just plain don't like them.

So, if I make them I usually end up eating them for several days. Which is fine because I love them, but it always feels silly to me to make something no one else will eat.

Except I wish it were the same case for brownies. I could totally make those just for myself. But that's another story. Back to the potatoes...

Tonight I whipped up a dish (with a couple suggestions from Paula Dean--but mostly it was my creation) that may have changed everything when it comes to my family and mashed potatoes.

It involved leftover baked potatoes from last night, butter, sour cream, milk, rosemary, and mushrooms and garlic sauteed in butter then simmered in white wine. Oh, and a little salt and pepper.

I thought they were divine.

And the rest of the family loved them, too! I love creating things in the kitchen, so I frequently have Joyful Moments there. But making something that everyone is a big fan of (especially when it involves a food they usually get very un-excited about), is an especially joyful Joyful Moment.

Not to mention the joy from eating something yummy.

Wishing you all yummy Joyful Moments!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Day 47: Mr. MD

Actually, it was a Ms., or a Mrs. But I don't know a song about a female doctor.

Today was the first time meeting the kids' new pediatrician.

Back in New England we had the World's Greatest Pediatrician. That's not an opinion, it's a title. He answers his own phone. Usually within the first ring or two. That alone would make him wonderful. But he had so many other fabulous qualities to go with it. I actually asked him to move with us. Shockingly, he turned me down.

So, I've sort of been dreading this day. Aren't we fortunate that my kids didn't have to see a doctor for a whole year? That's pretty crazy really. I almost feel like an irresponsible parent because of it.

But the time came for a necessary visit.

And while the new pediatrician doesn't answer her own phone, she was very personable. And she treated me like an equal--not an idiot, as some doctors do. Today was not a run of the mill appointment, it was actually something I was a little worried about. She made me feel like my concerns and opinions were valid. And she let me know that she is on my side and will take the necessary steps to make sure we get what we need. I can't tell you what a relief that was for me.

So, while taking one of my children to the doctor isn't exactly a Joyful Moment, finding out that we picked a good doctor (and don't have to switch around at all) kind of was.

And walking out of the office after it was all said and done was certainly a Joyful Moment for all of us.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Day 46: Story Time

A year or so ago I told my kids some stories from my life. They loved these stories and frequently ask me to retell them.

They asked for one of their favorites during dinner tonight. I must admit, sometimes I get tired of telling these stories over and over again. Tonight I really just wanted to eat dinner. So, I informed them that their daddy also had some exciting stories from his youth.

HH then began to tell them how he earned different scars on his body from various adventures and mishaps.

Then Sweet P remembered some of her exciting stories and shared a couple of those.

Little M didn't want to be left out and proceeded to tell us some very entertaining (very made up) stories from his life.

It was so fun listening to them juice up their stories with suspenseful voices and facial expressions. And it was a wonderful Joyful Moment shared together. With plenty of laughter for HH and I as we listened to their stories and watched their faces as they listened to HH's stories.

I can't wait to do it again, only this time I'll have the video camera ready!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments worthy of be retold again and again!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Day 45: I Almost Forgot!

I went to a baby shower tonight and then forgot to post! Then HH and I watched a movie and somehow just after it ended, I remembered.


Anyway, today we tackled the kids' toy room. It's become incredibly overrun with toys. It takes an hour to clean them up and the dog is constantly sneaking down and turning them into chew toys.

So, HH and I had enough. We all joined in this morning and spent a couple hours going through them. We threw away and recycled several items. We put a bunch more in a box to donate. I was touched by the toys Sweet P was willing to donate when I told her it was for kids who don't have toys. And I boxed up a ton that they just don't play with any more.

And then I watched them pull out toys that have been sitting in their toy bins all along, but the bins were too crowded for them to find all their toys! And it was like Christmas all over again. Little M was so excited about all his trains--like he'd never seen them before.

And all the effort and frustration that had gone into cleaning up the toy room was instantly worth it as I saw the joy on their faces at having access to all these forgotten, but beloved, toys. So, I think it's safe to say, we all shared in a Joyful Moment today.

Here's wishing you all a Joyful Moment shared with someone(s) you love!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Day 44: My Talented Family

Today was... difficult to describe. And I don't really want to relive it in an effort to come up with a good word.

It was not my favorite day. We'll leave it at that.

But tonight was the Variety Show at church. Which 3 out of the 4 of us were signed up to participate in. So, even though it was the last thing I wanted to do, we had to go.

Sweet P played a piece on her violin

And she did AMAZING!! Her bravery never ceases to amaze me.

And so many people came up to me afterword gushing with their praise and awe of my baby girl. I love being the proud mamma. A Joyful Moment I'm sure I'll relive as the mother of this talented little girl.

HH and I did a little something as well.

Unfortunately, I didn't explain the use of the flash well enough to my friend who was kind enough to be our photographer.

This was the clearest photo taken. I'll leave our "talent" to your imagination.

Suffice it to say, our friends at church now know the HH I know a lot better. And they have a little glimpse into why my life with him is just totally fun. F.U.N.

And so, on this awful horrible no good very bad day, Joyful Moments were still to be had. Thanks to my family. I'm so blessed.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments--even on the awfulest horriblest no goodest very baddest days.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Day 43: Rest

Do you ever have one of those days that seems to be pre-designated by your subconscious as a day of worry? HH seems to think I'm the only person in the world with this issue, but I comfort myself by believing that it's a "girl thing".

Anyway, today was one of those days. I tend to have them more when I'm pregnant (yay, Hormones again!), but today's concerns feel pretty legit. As in, I would be concerned with or without the added hormones.

So, while today still had several little Joyful Moments, right now is the one I wish to share. It just feels good to sit down and know that pretty soon I'll be sharing my concerns with a loving Heavenly Father through prayer and then I will go to sleep and get a rest from the constantly-spinning wheels of concern in my mind.

This isn't the same kind of Joyful Moment as seeing the look on Little M's face when he found out we were having cereal for dinner (a crumb topping for our tuna casserole made from crushed corn flakes--he LOVES cereal). But I am grateful for this Moment all the same. I need it.

Wishing you all peaceful and restful Joyful Moments.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Day 42: Take That, Cravings!

I had another excellent Joyful Moment last night after posting.

HH and I are doing a lip sync for a Variety show being held at our church Friday night. It was so much fun dancing around with him!

Anyway, I don't know if it had anything to do with yesterday's cookies, but today I overcame my cravings. Sort of.

Right after I put the kids down for a nap is my worst time. That's when I need--N.E.E.D.--chocolate and other unhealthy food. And the kids aren't around to inhibit me by helping me realize that if I don't want to feed it to them, I shouldn't feed it to myself.

But today, I was able to do two positive things. First, I waited. We had just finished lunch, after all. So, my preggers body could wait at least a little while before requiring calories. Then when snacking time came, I grabbed an orange. I ate it. And, the best part, I was satisfied.

Usually, (while I'm pregnant) when I try to substitute something else for whatever I'm craving, I end up just giving into the craving after I eat whatever I substituted. So, I'm actually worse off. But today, for whatever reason, it worked and I didn't eat any chocolate!

Besides the cookie that I had after lunch. But that was before my witching hour, so it doesn't count.

And when I realized all of this, it was a Joyful Moment.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments full of oranges (or your own healthy substitute that still leaves you feeling completely content and satisfied)!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Day 41: Cravings

Chocolate, to be exact. I have eaten so much chocolate during this pregnancy, it's truly embarrassing. Except that no one else knows how much. Besides, possibly, HH. And I'm a little embarrassed for him to know, but he's still pretty nice about it.

Basically, we are talking pounds upon pounds of chocolate being ingested by yours truly.

So, I stopped buying it.

I used to have a bag on hand at all times which we refer to around here as my "stress bag". Any time I feel stressed, I go open one small piece of very dark, very yummy chocolate from my bag and I'm good. No more than one a day.

But these days I can't control myself. I don't dare buy any for fear I'd eat the entire bag in one day.

Today I just couldn't handle it any more. So, I found a way around my self-imposed abstinence. But keep in mind that I'm also tired and I don't feel like doing much these days. So, I had to find a minimal effort way around.

No Bake Cookies. With extra cocoa powder. And then I threw in some butterscotch chips in some and marshmallows in some others. Just to make it really gourmet.

Oh, and some ground flax seed with the oats. I'm so healthy I can hardly stand it.

And they were very yummy. And very easy.

But the truly Joyful Moment came with Little M's amazement that I could actually make cookies without putting them in the oven. He kept asking when I was going to bake them. I kept telling him I wasn't because they're "No Bake Cookies". Then he'd ask when I was going to cook them. I think he's picked up on the fact that I'm a little slow these days.

He hates that I have to bake things in the oven. He frequently tries to convince me to serve foods and desserts to him raw (like pizza and chocolate chip cookies). He just doesn't have the patience for the oven.

So, he was delighted when he got to eat them shortly after I plopped them down on the wax paper (we did have to let them cool for a few minutes, so they weren't a complete gooey mess).

And it was a Joyful Moment because I have fond memories of making these with my mom when I was little. And I miss my mom, so that was fun to reminisce.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments involving something yummy, gooey, and relatively easy!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Day 40: I Would Walk 500 Miles and I Would Walk 500 more

But first, the pictures that we finally hung on the walls this weekend:

For the beach-themed bathroom. My kids really REALLY missed the beach when we first moved here.

And the frames I made for them for Christmas.

Now, as for those miles.

Actually, I would spin them.

That's right--today I passed the 1,000 mile mark on my spin bike at the gym. Woohoo! I get my name up on a chart on the wall for that. And that was another of the silly goals I set of things I want to accomplish before BB comes.

Yeah, in case you're wondering, it was a Joyful Moment. I'm rather pleased about it.

And I can't wait to keep racking up the miles.

But really, today was a pretty good day. Filled up with Joyful Moments. I just had to share this specific one because I'm pretty proud of myself.

Thanks for letting me share.

Wishing you Joyful Moments accompanying something worth bragging about!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Day 39: Set the Table, If You're Able

No pictures again tonight. When I can muster the energy to go downstairs and post from my own computer, I will attach them. But not tonight.

So, I love to cook. And to bake. And just make yummy things in the kitchen. So, for the most part, making dinner is something I enjoy. But for whatever reason, the last 5-10 minutes right before the meal are super stressful. I'm not sure how to get more organized with it. But it seems like all the sudden a million things need to be done.

I've usually got one or two things coming out of the oven or off the stove needing to be placed on hot pads on the table. I'm trying to finish up the salad or whatever vegetable we're having. I'm trying to cut up some fruit. I'm trying to get the table set (by myself, or whoever is around--but the kids can only reach some of the dishes). I'm trying to get milk and salad dressings or whatever else we need from the fridge, out and on on the table. And it's like it all needs to happen at the same time.


Part of the reason this problem was created is because Little M kind of starts to go crazy if the table is set with food or dishes before it's actually time to sit and eat.

Anyway, tonight at this point in time I had everyone else in the kitchen with me and everyone helped to get everything put on the table. It was awesome. Seriously. I loved it. It was so nice to have the help of six other hands. It greatly reduced my stress and was also just more fun. So much so that it was actually today's Joyful Moment.

Now if I can just figure out how to make that happen every night...

Wishing you all Joyful Moments of coordinated efforts making life a little easier and better!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Day 38: AAA

As in, Another 'Another Accomplishment'.

I know, I am SO productive these days.

I wish.

But HH helped me get some long overdue projects done this afternoon, in spite of having a very busy morning.

I made special picture frames for my children for Christmas. Each one has a picture of them, a picture of the Savior, and a picture of the temple where HH and I were married for all eternity. Then it has their name and "I am a child of God" on it. I'm using HH's laptop, but if I remember, I'll post pictures of them tomorrow from my computer. They turned out really cute and I am quite proud of them.

The kids opened them for Christmas and then we placed them under our bed to keep them safe until we finished the kids' headboards so we could figure out where their beds would be in their rooms so we could decide where to hang the pictures. Well, that was Christmas. The headboards did take a while to finish, but they've been done for a while now. And yet, the pictures still sat under our bed, just waiting for the dog to discover them and chew their nice frames to bits.

So, today I got out all the stuff and we hung them on their walls.

And it felt great! Truly a Joyful Moment. And they were pretty excited about it, too. Slowly, slowly our house is becoming a home and little things like this help a lot. For me, at least. Plus, the pictures are finally serving their purpose. And I don't have to worry about strangling the dog in the event of her ruining them.

Such peace.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments bringing peace of mind.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Day 37: Melting My Heart

We've actually had sun and warm weather ('warm' is a relative term now, meaning 'above freezing') pretty much the whole week. It's still fairly chilly, but I can see the grass. I don't need ice picks and crampons to climb the ice mountain that was surrounding my mailbox. And the road is no longer paved with ice.

So, tonight we decided to venture out for a walk. Ever since HH and I were dating, walking has always been one of our favorite things to do together. And we haven't been able to do it for several months now since the sidewalks were buried in snow (and we would have lost a few limbs to frostbite) besides that one day I went with the kids a couple weeks ago.

But tonight we went out as a whole family, HH included. And, of course, the dog, who was ecstatic beyond belief to be going on a walk again. We all really enjoyed it. Besides a bit of a chilly wind, it was definitely a Joyful Moment.

The melted snow was rushing down the drains in torrents and it was music to my ears. I am SO ready for Spring. So, that really enhanced my Moment. All I need is a nice bit of very dark chocolate and my Joyful Moment would have been perfect...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Day 36: Girl's Night Out

For some reason this didn't post last night, but I promise I typed it yesterday!

Just for one girl. Me.

I got to skip out on post-dinner clean up and putting the kids to bed to go shopping.

It was fabulous!

I was able to find a cute Easter dress for Sweet P and an adorable 3-piece suit for Little M--all on sale, of course.

Plus a couple outfits for upcoming baby showers and a little something for myself.

It felt so good to be out alone. To walk down the aisles without holding any little hands in a vice grip to keep them from running off. To debate over a couple dresses for over 10 minutes without anyone asking me when we were leaving and whining incessantly.

I love being with my children. But being out by myself tonight was just exactly what I needed. A nice long Joyful Moment.

Thanks again to my fab HH for providing me with this free time. I love you.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Day 35: AA

As in Another Accomplishment.

Today's Joyful Moment came in finishing a huge project of organizing photos on my computer. We got a new iMac somewhere around the time I started doing these daily posts. Before that we had a Dell. So, I had to transfer over all of the zillions of photos on that computer and begin the task of organizing them. Because of the nature of things, there were many duplicates, some folders were split and distantly divided, and some edits were lost.

Plus, the new computer has a feature where it organizes photos by who is in them. So, I also had to go through and name each individual in each photo.

It's probably taken me at least 50 hours to do. At least.

And today I finished.

But it was a little bittersweet. Now I'll have to find another project to take up my "free time" that doesn't involve moving anything besides my fingers (because I'm too tired).

Anyway, I really wanted to finish it before the baby comes and I did. And now I have all these wonderful photos back in one user-friendly place (most of them were being stored on an external hard drive because my prior computer was a laptop with not nearly enough memory). And that feels really good.

Plus, I'm not really a finisher. Especially when it comes to organization projects. I'm a great beginner. But then I get overwhelmed by the task, lose sight of its significance, and move on to something else.

But this time, I stuck it out and I'm so pleased with myself. and I was able to pull up a bunch of old videos of the kids today when they wanted to watch their younger selves in action.

And that brought on a whole series of Joyful Moments for all of us.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments of accomplishments!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Day 34: Daddy Dearest

I'm beyond blessed to be very close to both of my parents. So, I'm sure this won't be the last of my Joyful Moments brought on by one of them.

Today it was a kind and loving thought emailed to me by my dad. I recently expressed some doubts about my appearance on another blog and he responded in the cute, sweet way only he can.

And it completely made my day. It was one of those Joyful Moments that just keeps on providing Joyful Moments each time I think about it.

I love my dad.

And another tiny Joyful Moment while we took the hospital tour tonight and I saw the awesome "Nutrition Room" that's full of food and snacks and open 24/7. No more starving during my hospital stay!!

Wishing you Joyful Moments that keep on giving Joyful Moments.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Day 33: Sweet P

Today was another one of those days. It's pathetic how often I have one of "those days"--especially considering how great my life is. Thank you, Hormones! But that's why I'm doing this blog. And thank heavens for it. Otherwise I'm positive I'd be having a lot more of "those days".

Anyway, enough negativity.

The thing is, Sweet P is pretty intuitive and I'm pretty sure she picked up on the fact that I was having a rough day even though I really strive to hide it from the kids when I am. I told her to come upstairs for her afternoon snack and she said, "Just a minute, I'm finishing my present for you."

It's not Christmas or my birthday.

She's just thoughtful like that. She knows how much getting a present totally brightens her day and she wanted to brighten mine.

So, there was one Joyful Moment in knowing that she was being so thoughtful to think of that. And another came when she presented me with two beautifully colored pictures. Even packaged in a gift bag.

There's a reason we call her Sweet P.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments brought to you by someone sweet and thoughtful!