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Friday, April 29, 2016

Five on Friday

(stealing this idea from my creative friend C)

1. Sunday marks the end of our 28-day fast metabolism diet cleanse. Brian is down 19 lbs and I'm down 10. You better believe I'm heading straight for the coffee shop Monday morning, but I'm planning to continue the diet for a bit longer. I think. We didn't cheat even once during these 28 days, and it was tough. I wanted to stick the book into a paper shredder every time the author gushed over the luscious and scrumptious food she was telling us to eat, and I have spent an inordinate amount of time at the grocery store buying food and in the kitchen prepping food this month. The kids are so over it.

2. I am growing my hair out for the first time since I shaved it in May 2011. It is just as painful as I imagined. Bad hair is so not fun.

3. After a good start to the season, Camden's baseball team has stalled. They lost 10-0 last week, and we've had 3 games rained out since.

4. We have 3 kid events tonight. There are only 2 kids and 2 parents. You see the problem, right? We're skipping one event, unfortunately, and doing the whole divide-and-conquer thing for the other 2 events.

5. We had to replace our 20-year old heating/AC unit this week. Now that's a $4600 bill no one wants. Yikes. I'm going to appreciate the cool air this summer, though.

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Brian showing Camden how to juggle, but mostly I like Camden's adoring face.
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Thursday, April 28, 2016

. . . but the memory is priceless

I posted yesterday's pictures because they made me reminisce and smile big. But I also posted them because of this.

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Blog books are the first and last books she grabs day in and day out. And next Christmas break when I spend the days hammering out the 2016 blog book and cursing all the pictures and words I have shared over the past year, she will open up the book and laugh about the 2009 pictures.

A picture is worth a thousand words, but the memory is priceless.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A picture is worth a thousand words . . .

I got sucked into the rabbit hole of looking at old pictures this morning. Do you know in April 2009, I took over 600 pictures. Six Hundred. Apparently, I had nothing better to do.

Or maybe my kids were just really cute.

Here are just a few from April 2009. You know, back when all I needed to do was put them in a cute outfit and ask them to smile. I hardly know what that's like these days.

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So that's what his beard looks like with no gray in it. I had forgotten.
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A wrinkle-free face. I'd forgotten about that too.
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Sunday, April 17, 2016

It's Been a While

It is entirely possible this is the longest blog break I've taken since Life as a Lewis began. It is not an indication anything is wrong. It is an indication, however, of how crazy life has been. In fact, I realized earlier this week that blogging had not even crossed my mind. While I may not blog as often these days, it is certainly rare that I don't at least think about blogging.

Baseball season is in full swing. While we have been spending the evenings wrapped in blankets, coats and sweatshirts, Camden has been pitching up a storm. During his first game, he threw so many strikes that he was able to pitch the entire game without needing relief and received the game ball for doing such an awesome job. In the spirit of honesty, I should admit he also hit two batters with wild pitches. Oops! Rory has made friends with a sister of Camden's teammate, and she spends all 3 hours chatting and playing to her heart's content. I love it.

I snuck in a surprise scan and visit with Dr. C. The big Cancer continues to just linger quietly, which is A-okay with me. In fact, my oncologist and I decided we could hold off seeing each other for four months this time. Four months represent the longest I have gone without an oncology appointment in over 5 years.

The kids were on spring break this week which presented a problem - I do not have spring break, and Brian's spring break was several weeks ago. That means they have done a whole lot of entertaining themselves, unfortunately. Rory had a playdate to the zoo Wednesday so I took Camden out for a cinnamon roll the size of his head. It's so easy to forget how important a little one-on-one time is, and we had a great time just tooling around town running errands. It was a busy service weekend for the church, so we spent much of the weekend working (Brian spent the whole weekend working).

Brian and I started the Fast Metabolism Diet, and it is so. hard. I mean, I lost 5 lbs the first week and Brian lost 9 lbs, but so. hard. No caffeine, dairy, sugar, wheat, etc. Basically lean meat, green veggies, with a few grains and fruit thrown in on specific days. This means I survived one of the most stressful weeks (both personally and professionally) on rabbit food. The kids gaze longingly at our Paleo beef sticks and nitrate-free turkey while all we want is a cup of coffee and ice cream. Week 2 was a bit easier, but still not much fun.

I was supposed to be traveling to Oklahoma this week (traveling for work, but the bonus was I was going to arrive a few days early and spend them with Becky), but the work portion was cancelled . . . which means the fun portion was also cancelled. The silver lining is that I won't have to mess up my diet, miss Rory's school play or miss one of Camden's baseball games. Still, I am super disappointed.

This week is more of the same: sleep, work, church, baseball, repeat.

Rory watching Camden's baseball opening ceremonies (notice all the baseball players on the field).
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Camden is a Padre this year.
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All she wants to do is cook. I'm trying to say yes as often as I can even though so often our schedule is busy, and I just need to get the food on the table as quickly as possible.
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Finishing up a TN history project.
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Eating a cinnamon roll the size of his head.
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Planting plum seeds.
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Evening bike ride and walk; there have not been nearly enough of these.
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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Snapshot: February/March 2016

Starting . . . a new baseball season. I had not forgotten Clarksville baseball involved many hours of practice, but I had forgotten, perhaps, how those hours accumulate over the week. It is super fun, however, to see how much fun Camden is having. And this is his last year for Little League - how sad is that! I bought baseball pants in a men's size small for him this week.  What is going on here??

Finishing . . . nothing for myself necessarily, but we successfully navigated through a Bible memorization competition and two projects for each kid in the same week without losing our cool, and I feel like that is a major accomplishment.

Wondering . . . when I started turning the camera over to my 12-year old?? It's happened more frequently in recent months, and he is currently working on photographing a wildflower science project.

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Reading . . .
Columbine was the most riveting of this group. It's a hefty book with a tough subject matter, but I could not stop reading for 4 days (impressive considering our schedule that week).

I also highly recommend Raising Grateful Kids by Kristen Welch.

My first Ann Patchett novel (Bel Canto) was more poetically written than is generally my taste, but interesting.

I read Everything, Everything in one sitting (I have no idea the last time that happened).

The Gilded Hour (not pictured) by Sara Donati was a fascinating look (historical fiction) at women's issues, poverty, and immigrants. Even though I didn't agree with her slant on the issues, this was a fascinating and eye-opening book.

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom was heart-wrenching, and I'm still thinking about the characters weeks later. Unfortunately, it also featured a truly abrupt ending that felt very ill-conceived. It was bad enough that I'm not even sure I feel up to reading the sequel that comes out next week.

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Watching . . . I'll Have What Phil's Having - a PBS travel/food show the kids and I watched during our sick days in February. It is educational, funny, and tends to bring on serious hunger pangs. Also American Idol and Reality Check (commentary on AI), Survivor, starting Season 2 of The Blacklist with Brian, and working our way through The People Vs. O.J. Simpson.

Listening . . . not much music these days, but an abundance of podcasts. Here are a few of my recent favorite episodes:
Inspired to Action podcast: Preparing for the Teen Years with Elisa Pulliam (Episode 95)
The Happy Hour: Retha Nichole (Episode 77)
The Art of Simple: Neighbor's Table with Sarah Harmeyer (Episode 21)
The Happy Hour: Jami Nato (Episode 68)
A Mom's Mission Field: Flower Patch Farmgirl Blooms in the City (Episode 15)

 Deleting . . . Facebook from my phone. It's been nearly 2 weeks, and I still need a 12-step recovery program.

Discovering . . . that listening to podcasts while grocery shopping transforms the mundane into a much more palatable experience. Introverts, unite.

Laughing . . .
"Mom, are we Dominican or Republics?" -Rory
"Have you ever lived in a compartment?" -Rory

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