Friday, January 29, 2016

Snapshot #26: January 2016

Developing . . . 
Every day this month I have made my bed (sorry, mom - this is not a reflection on your parenting) and cleaned the kitchen before going to bed. I've never been one to leave lots of dirty dishes around, but this month I've put everything away - both dirty and clean dishes. It's so much nicer to wake up to a clean kitchen. Why did I wait until 40 to realize this?

Listening . . . 
Hipster Hymns Spotify playlist
What Should I Read Next podcast - the host is also the author of Modern Mrs. Darcy blog, and I have absolutely loved every episode. My to-read list is a mile long.

Reading . . . 
Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass #2)
Pretty Girls (incredibly dark and gory)
The Nightingale (to date, I've started but not finished two Kristin Hannah novels, but this one comes highly recommended so we'll see how far I get)
The Rumor by Elin Hilderbrand
After You by Jojo Moyes

Starting . . . 
My book choices have been fiction-only for 2016 so I'm resolving to start and finish two parenting books in February: Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World: How One Family Learned that Saying No Can Lead to Life's Biggest Yes by Kristen Welch and Raising Body-Confident Daughters: 8 Conversations to Have With Your Tween by Dannah Gresh

Watching . . . 
After burning right through Making a Murderer, we quickly made our way through The Staircase (another true crime documentary). I have also watched the first half of Season 1 of The Killing. I have never once been interested in crime dramas (fiction or non-fiction) so it's kind of a strange genre to be suddenly engrossed with. Side note: I fully recognize this is a lot of TV viewing. My only explanation is I've been staying up a little later at night, plus those snow days were an excellent opportunity for TV binging. On the lighter side: American Idol and Korean dramas.

Overheard . . . 
"Wearing color is what I live for" said by a certain 9-year old in our house.

Anticipating . . .
my parent's arrival this afternoon.

Striving . . . 
to focus on the "nurture" aspect of parenting instead of always being the organizer, motivator, disciplinarian, etc.

Caught her mid-question

Friday, January 22, 2016

20/366: Snow Day

Wednesday was our first snow day of the year, and it was kind of awesome. Lots of relaxing, playing in the snow, even a little cleaning/organizing accomplished. Thursday was Snow Day #2 (probably an unnecessary snow day, but this is Tennessee). I had to work but Brian and the kids were off. Snow Day #2 might have lost a bit of Snow Day magic, but we compensated by making chocolate chip cookies and letting the kids stay up until 10:00 (practically an epic evening in our lives).

Today is Snow Day #3 and it looks as if the promise of a winter apocalypse might be coming true since the weathermen are estimating 8-12 inches of snow. That definitely qualifies as a winter event in Tennessee.

The true catastrophe, of course, will be if we run out of creamer for our coffee while snowed in, which is a distinct possibility. I didn't exactly take the weather prediction seriously and it's past time for a grocery run.

We ventured out last night for a last-minute search for a snow shovel and sleds. The rest of Clarksville was also on the hunt and while it may have required standing in line for over an hour, a shovel and two sleds were acquired.

Brian and I have basically abandoned parenting and have burned our way through the Netflix documentary Making a Murderer this week. The look at our justice system and poverty was fascinating, and if we haven't been watching it, we've been talking about it. If we haven't been discussing it, then we've been reading news article on the topic.

I didn't take too many pictures; just enough to show the kiddos having a good time.










2016-01-20 12.51.48

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Tuesday Tidbits

The sound of the girl singing in the shower at the top of her lungs gives me a strong hint that I possibly didn't need to drop everything at work and drive to pick her up from school when she called this afternoon and said she was sick and couldn't possibly make it until the end of the day. Live and learn.

My appointment with Dr. C was uneventful Wednesday, which is just how we like it. I had a weird episode with pain in my ribs, which led to an x-ray and a second afternoon at the doctor's office. Internally, I became completely convinced my scan results must have been all wrong while I outwardly tried to convince everyone it was nothing. Turns out bruised ribs are surprisingly painful, but also no big deal.

If you can believe the news, a weather apocalypse is approaching and we just might have a snow day this week. Well, an apocalypse or an inch of snow which is the same thing in Tennessee.

We had our annual MLK talk last night in which Brian and I try to dig a little deeper on a kid-friendly level about racism and what that looks like. I cry through the I Have a Dream speech and MLK quotes every single year. I feel like we talk about this topic often; it certainly takes up a whole lot of my head space on a daily basis, but maybe we haven't been as clear as I thought since Rory thought the white people were the slaves. My consolation that we haven't been as negligent in talking about this as Rory's viewpoint might lead you to believe was Camden's explanation of how different nationalities are like different chapters in a book and you would never not read all the chapters in a book. This makes perfect sense to his book-loving nature.

Liz, Addison, Rory, and I went to see Cinderella at the Nashville Children's Theater last week. It was adorable, and the group of moms/grandma/daughters in front of us brought extra tiaras, which was incredibly sweet. It was a super fun girl's night. We were even on the 3rd row, which was a first for me at live theater.


18/366: paper football

19/366: wishing Grandma happy birthday

Sunday, January 17, 2016

9/366 - 17/366

(aren't you glad I'm not doing this daily?)

9/366: Brian fixing us breakfast on a Saturday morning.

10/366: First snow of the season

11/366: Hillbilly Day at school

14/366: Cinderella at Nashville Children's Theater

15/366: Homecoming night at school

16/366: A top knot and robe for the sick girl.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Tuesday Tidbits

The first "real" weekend of the new year was full of all kinds of football and down time. Just how I like it!  A little bit of snow on the ground Sunday morning and very chilly weather made it feel like a perfect winter weekend.

We've settled into the second full week of the year and are trying to get our groove back. I find myself pretty ready to have the day over with, p.j.'s on, make-up off, and headed to the couch or bed with Netflix by 7:00 . . . and then I remember we have kids and try to make it a few more minutes. ;)

Rory used Christmas money and bought herself some cowboy boots. She's all about the boots and scarves these days, which is just funny. Girl thinks she is just flat own grown up.


It's Homecoming week at school so kids are dressing up a bit. Rory has become quite proficient at tween posing.



Brian is working a half day Wednesday so he can drive to Nashville with me for my oncology appointment. Sometimes I like going by myself and not having another person to worry about, but sometimes it's good to have company. Like I mentioned last week, now that I know my scan showed stability, I am expecting to hear nothing but more of the same in terms of Tamoxifen and check ups every 12 weeks, but it will be nice to have this wrapped up. But first? Lunch at the Farmer's Market. Yum!

Friday, January 08, 2016

8/366: Celebration Flowers (and ice cream)

When my phone rang Thursday morning at work and I saw that it was Vanderbilt calling, my heart might have skipped a beat or two. Because as hard as a I might work at not worrying, an unexpected phone call from your oncologist less than 24 hours after a CT scan is a bit unnerving.

But it was only Bonnie, the nurse, calling to let me know that my CT scan showed no change and that they would see me next week. Barring some strange turn in my bloodwork next week, I think this means life will continue on as normal.

The news called for a $3.99 bouquet of flowers from Trader Joe's along with cookie butter ice cream. It was a big night. Brian was asleep by 8:30 and since I kept falling asleep over my book, I turned off the lights at 9:00.


Thursday, January 07, 2016

7/366: American Idol

As we began watching last night, Camden said he was watching one of his lifelong dreams go boom and disintegrate (because it's the last season so no more chances to audition). Cracked me up.


Wednesday, January 06, 2016

6/366: Scan Day

I like to pretend that Scan Day is old hat by now. And it mostly is, but I also know there will be some anxious moments between now and Wednesday when I see Dr. C for results. Becky texted me last night to ask how I was feeling, and  I replied, "Well, it's hard to tell if I'm feeling on edge because of the scan or just because it's a typical day at 5 p.m." 

Because, seriously, the witching hour is still real even if you have not-so-littles anymore.


Tuesday, January 05, 2016

5/366: Pumping gas

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Monday, January 04, 2016

4/366: Back to work


Sunday, January 03, 2016

1/366 - 3/366

2015 ended very quietly for the Lewis Family. We made a fresh batch of Chex Mix, watched Anne of Green Gables, and were all in bed by 10:30. Seriously, we are so boring.

We embraced new beginnings in 2016 by spending the day cleaning out the garage and the kid's rooms (insert many moans and groans). We made plans to finally get that date night in and set the kids up with movies and food in the living room, rushed to the theater only to stand in line for 15 minutes and hear that the movie was sold out before we made it to the ticket counter. So New Year's night was spent at the grocery store instead of date night, which is kind of how it feels this Christmas holiday break has gone. As in, I had completely unrealistic expectations for this week which meant perpetual disappointment when the days didn't unfold as I expected. I totally should know better than that by now!


Listening to Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix for hours on end.

Using his knife to open gifts. Remembering my resolve to encourage his adventurous spirit (while protecting his heart). This is not easy for me - I totally wanted someone to help him with this knife.

Friday, January 01, 2016

Hello, 2016

So long to last year
It's all becoming so clear.
There is no use living in regret.
Let's fight a good fight
Train our eyes to find the light
That makes this year the best one yet!
Starting right here . . . Happy New Year!
-J.J. Heller

My standard way to finish out a calendar year is by printing my blog for the year. The time that it takes to do this always makes me resolve to stop blogging for good because there's just so many words and sharing and pictures. 

And then I remember that the kiddos pull out my blog books multiple times a week, and I remember there is value in documenting my thoughts/feelings and their funny anecdotes and words and used-to-be-cute-but-are-now-in-the-tween-awkward faces.

One of the main themes I noticed from 2015 was how busy we were. While I am certainly tempted to resolve to be less busy in 2016, after reading this post at the Bronlea Blog, planning to make all that busyness count seems more realistic and worthwhile.

A few things that I have been doing the last few months that I want to continue in 2016:

Reading and Writing. When the kids head to bed at night, I head to my own bed and write some Scripture in my journal then spend 30ish minutes reading for fun. It's been awesome to read fiction again, and I know that it's helped my concentration and sleep patterns. Writing Scripture down makes me actually think about it a little more thoughtfully, and while I'd like to claim that I'm beautifully, artfully journaling . . . it's just my own messy handwriting. 

Less Facebook. No explanation needed here, really. We're planning to buy Circle for our family which will put solid guidelines into our computers/devices to keep us accountable. It's pretty easy to monitor the kids (since they have no devices and aren't allowed media time during the week), but the adults get sucked into mindless browsing too often.

Project 365. Take a picture-a-day. I did this in 2011, 2012, and 2013, and I am happiest with those years in terms of photography and documenting. At this point, I don't have any plans to scrap those pictures, just blog and print them. Also, no artsy themes or pressure on me to make them perfect - just snapshots of our ordinary life.

Be Social. Brian and I are both introverts with both jobs and positions at church (plus two extroverted kiddos) that require a lot out of us in terms of social interaction, and we tend to hibernate when we have the opportunity. We are resolving to give up at least one of our few alone nights a month to share our home and table with community.

Make It Count. Whatever that entails, I want *it* to count. The time spent working, the time spent at church events, the time with Brian and the kids. I want the busyness, the cancer, our family to count.