Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Let's RE-sensitize

                      


Yesterday I came across by accident a very sad & disturbing photo connected to the news of todays horrible act of evil by the evil group I shall not name here. At first I did not believe what I saw was real. I thought it to be a scene from a movie. I did not flinch, I thought of course it was gross and kept scrolling, but not super fast. I again, just thought it was fake. 

Realizing what it was after seeing the statements I quickly felt my chest tense, my eyes fill with tears and my heart ache for him, and his family. This is just so sad. Such an evil act. I know he is not the first victim of such evil, and they are not the first humans to commit such an evil crime. I am aware that there are many vicitms in this war going on right now. This was just the first thing that woke me up to it, and a few other thoughts. 
 
My thoughts following are not to detract from his memory or the war that is going on over there right now. It's purpose is 1, for me to share some thoughts to get off my chest, and 2, to maybe, hopefully help someone re think things going on around us a little bit more. To take a stand in their own home, and make a change. 

Why would I be so calm about such a disturbing horrific evil scene just because I thought it was hollywood? How sick has our world become? How sick have I become without even realizing it?! I do not think of myself as a sick person. Clearly I am sick in some way if my first inclination was not to immediatly look away and cringe at it. We live in times where so much is fake. So many videos are planned, prepared, scripted in a way to look like it was of the moment., To look like it was an accident. So many want to have theior photos or videos go viral for instant internet fame. Or maybe to get on a talk show. So much of hollywood is believed to need action, and real life scenarios including the horrible , unthinkable and just plain sad situations that happen in real life. 

Let's think about this. 

We have hated "t.v" our whole marriage and have only had a tv for movies on dvd for the majority of time. Only a few years we had cable in an apartment because it was free and I gave in to the idea that having disney jr. would help me in some way. (false)  We have never been "tv" watching family. We stopped watching movies a whole lot too. I probably would have watched more but my Mr. started enjoying them less and less as he would see hidden agendas and strong themes that were teaching in sneaky ways bad thinking or un-truths. For many years we encouraged eachother to read books, listen to positive talks that uplift, inspire and help others. We would seek friendships with others who believed the same. 

Then somewhere on the road we got side tracked. Netflix told us we could enjoy tv with out having "tv" We could watch what we wanted, when we wanted. Then what happened after that, looking back on it today, is sad. Something I believe has happened to too many of us. 

I started watching different award winning, loved and talked about popular tv shows. I did not feel guilty. I thought I was not a tv junkie so it was ok. A few shows in one night. A season in a few weeks. A few seasons in a few months and finished all 7,8, or 9 seasons in about 5 months. THAT IS ALOT OF TV. no matter what excuses I made, no matter how good the excuses sounded, no matter how popular it is to watch tv or netflix, it was ruining my life.Subsequently my childrens too. How you say?
 
                           

The ability to withdraw and not think ruined my thinking. It is known you have to practice something to be good at it right? Well, how do we expect to be good at thinking if we dont use our brains often? Use our minds not just for work, or for church but for ourselves. For our own personal growth. How is it possible for me to be creative if I stop practicing crteativity? My motivation for seeking knowledge was almost entirely gone.My motivation for a clean home was easily trumped by a desire to "relax". I mean, heck, I deserved to relax right?! I have six kids, I homeschool, I just moved,  blah, blah blah...  My motivation for a better relationship with my husband.  Wow. That is a whole blog post in and of itself. Actually all of these are. 

How can one strengthen a marriage by staring at a screen? Seriousy. In todays hectic life some nights he would go out to play a board game with friends. Some nights I might be out with a friend, and some nights we all may be bsuy with a church event of some sort. Then some nights we are home together after kids are in bed but often I would say I didn't want to think or do anything and we would enjoy a show together. Spend a year doing this... how many converstaions, or moments of laughter did we truly experience with one another? For a family who believed they were a n\"non tv watching family" it was a lot. 

I have a hunch we are not the only family out there like this. All I have to do is have a conversation with a handful of casual acquaintances or close friends to hear the same kind of statements. 

"oh we dont like tv but we do have a few shows we like on netflix" or 

 "yah, we LOVE all the same shows. We cant stop. We just watch all the episodes as fast as we can"  

Often someone asks on FB 

"what shows do you like on netflix? then EVERYONE and their mother loves to chime in all their favorite shows to watch.... But,..."we all don't watch tv that much." 

I did not want to think, so I let the TV do the thinking for me. I got used to scenes I thought were more mild then other shows I've heard people watch. I thought I was doing okay. In my mind, I didnt watch nasty looking zombies eat flesh, I only watched Jack Bauer (24) torture a suspect for information. I didn't watch CSI crime scene investigations, because surely that would be just too horrific to see,...but I did watch Bones, because it seemed more scientific and less morbid. (false) Oh- I did not watch reality shows because that was just full of drama but, spend a nigth watching Pretty little Liars to figure out who "A" is that was ok. 

 I enjoyed shows such as prison break, bones, 24, Alias, Fringe etc. I became used to seeing horrific scenes and believe.... actually,  I know my senses were dulled. I was becoming de-sensitized. So much that when I saw the photo yesterday of the U.S. photo journalist beheaded I did not believe what I saw was real and DID NOT FLINCH. 

I am upset about what happened to him. What this means for his family. What this means for our country.  I will pray for his family this evening just as I have for the families trapped on that mountian and for our country to take the right actions in conflicts such as this. However. If I pray but then go about my life changing nothing how much am I really wanting things to get better? 

How can I , How can we go back to normal life after such horrific wars go on? How do we raise our children by example to know that weather fake or real it is inspired by the same.  We must stop in our tracks and take a look at what we allow into our minds. Our homes. I believe we must all ask ourselves "Am I infected with the hollywood and the media disease?" The invisable disease that dulls our mind, and blinds our senses. We as a society are becoming de sensiitized.It is so difficult to know if this is you or not. I did not knoiw I was desensitized until yesterday.

I am so thankful for my husbands wisdom in canceling our netflix a few weeks ago. He asked me about that many times in the past 6 months. He would tell me he wanted to cancel but I kept saying I would rather not. Then a few weeks ago he came to me and asked  what I would think about a family fast of it for one month. To me, one month wasn't forever so I agreed. I thought sure, why not take a break. So he cancelled it and at first that was hard. We had kids begging for a cartoon that I didnt have access to anymore. So, what did we do? We pulled from our dvd collection. 

Almost immediatly after it was cancelled my Mr. went on a business trip to GenCon in Indianapolis for almost 2 weeks. I wished a few times we had a way for me to watch something. Admittedly I downloaded the fox app so I could watch something. I just felt so bored. Then That was no fun and I started (amazingly ..sacracastic tone) spending time doing what I used to do. Read, study new topics I want to know more about, craft, sew, and even write in my journal. Its only been a short while and as each day passed without netflix I felt the spirit in my home change. I noticed when the kids were bored they easily found something to do non electronic related. I also became increasingly annoyed at the tv when I had kids whine that they wanted to watch it. 

After yesterdays experience, the hymn "I need thee every hour" kept popping up in my head.

                       

 It gave me hope and peace.Something we need to feel during these difficult times. Not too long after I felt frustrated at a child interrogating me as to why I did not like one dvd I asked her to turn off because it sounded not nice. I told her how I felt and sent her to read. Then without even really thinking about it or even really acting upset I just went downstairs and unplugged our ps3 and Tv and hid them away in a different room in storage. I rearranged the room to look normal and filled the area where the tv was with our keyboard and some classic books. Then went on my way to feed my children dinner. No one had noticed as they did not go downstairs to play. I didnt want to make a big deal out of it, but I was done. 

                                     
   

 
I knew after my experience of being woken up to the fact that I was de-sensitized and after the way my kids were begging for the tv we needed a complete detox. We needed to enjoy a life with board games, books, gardening, outside play, writing, art, dancing, music, sewing, crafting, cooking, baking, laughing, wrestling,tickling, exercising , using our imagination and playing toys with our toddler and baby siblings. We do not need a tv to do our thinking for us. 

 I know there are many wonderful virtuous and lovely videos out in the world by righteous and loving people. I know the tv is a tool and it can be used for good and it can be used for bad. We will decide if and when the tv comes back out and what rules need to be in place. For ALL. 

Today I challenge you the same challenge I have for our family. I challenege you to unplug your tv. Pause your hulu, netflix, amazon prime subscription or whatever you use for tv and detox from it. If you can hide your tv. get it out of sight so it is out of mind for all. If you cannot move it, maybe just cover it. Classy I know, ;) but if people ask just tell them what you are doing. Make a list of things you enjoy doing for fun and a list of what your family enjoys doing together. Seek those things out. Do it as an experiement if you will. See if you can go a month. We can be in this together. Share with me your experiences or thoughts on how it is going. we can hashtag it #Resensitize  Share your thoughts on your blogs, fb, twitter, or IG. Share pics of your no tv room , or your kids doing something else when they otherwise would have been watching tv.  

I believe stepping away from it and seeking out the better things in life we will find our spirits more sensitive, our hearts more open, our minds more busy with ideas and our hands more creative. We will be awake again, awake enough to see opportunities around us to serve others. To see moments we can have with our children & family that we would have missed if they were watching tv. To feel again. To RESENSITIZE instead of de-sensitize.  Lets do something wonderful. Something in memory of those lives lost by the hands of evil. The same evil that seeks to darken the light that shines within all of us through tv, movies etc.  #resensitize 

                                               
                                 Feel free to use the #resensitize photos to use in social media. 
                                                   Images made in #rhonnadesignsapp




Thursday, August 14, 2014

We love flash cards..and baby!

Try again. Written originally last month but it would not publish. ;) 



This sweet little gal is 10 months old this weekend! 

I am amazed at how much she changes eachand every day.





 




She is a fast crawler and quickly moves abvout the house to anything she thinks looks fun. Or yummy. She puts everything in her mouth. She has taken up to two steps recently but still prefers to crawl and sit down. She has been mastering the art of standing without falling this week. But when we encourage her to walk she sits down. She will be walking by her first birthday thats for sure. 

She is a whopping 13 lbs. 
Let that tiny size not fool you. She is getting chubby underneath. All her bottles of formula and baby food has certainly helped. I am sad we finished nursing this month. 10 months isnt bad though. I have had babies nurse less time. I just didnt have very good milk supply and my milk apparantly wasnt fatty enough for her to grow. Once we put her on formula she started to gain a pound a month. 

These photos are where her new favorite place to hang out is. She knows we keep all our flash cards on the bottom of the red library cart. Its pretty common to have a bunch of those cards strewn about around the cart. We are deciding where we can put them so they are up and away from her but not out of sight ( out of mind)


I tend to forget about flash cards if we put them away where we dont see them everyday. When we see them its so easy to pull a deck out and go through it for a fun activity. My favorite pack of flash cards are places around the world. (of course!)  Target is known for having some awesome flash cards in their dollar section usually around July-August. I always keep my eye out for new packs around this time. ( one of my favorite times of the year, shopping for school supplies for cheap during back to school sales)

New boxes of crayons for .39 ? YES please! 

We also love to stock up on supplies to put in Operation Christmas child shoe boxes. 

For now Leela just loves to eat the cards but one day shell get to read them herself. Who doesnt want to know all about Turantulas!? 


Thats all for now. Sorry Ive been MIA. Life with six kids is busy. An adventure for sure. 

Love, hugs, Best wishes and all that jazz! 

Jenn-lee 




A few more Photos just for fun: Follow me on Instagram if youd like. momentsbyJL


















Wednesday, May 14, 2014

DAY 2 OF gym

                    



So it looks like blogger decided to post what I wrote yesterday morning this morning. So as mentioned in the other post I had a personal training appointment this morning. AT.....5:30 am. Now, This is not my usual wake up time. Usually I wake up around 7:30 when either leela or Tobin wake up. I have known I wanted this to change. Actually, I know it needed to change. So I made the apointment early so I could have time to get home and enjoy some quiet before the whole house is up. It feels wonderful and quiet. 

How did my PT appointment go you ask? Well, ...He didnt show up. yah. discouraging and frustrating. They called him and he talked to me. He felt bad and wanted to reschedule. I did but I was a bit mad and felt like switching to try a different one but decided sometimes people need a 2nd chance. So tonight I'll meet with him. I have not set specific goals yet as I dont really know where I am at with stats etc on my body. I am excited to get all that down on paper so the real fun and hard work can begin. 

I have not exersised in 8 years. This is so foreign to my body. Today I did 10 min warm up of a brisk walk on the treadmill and after the whole PT reschedule I went to do 15 min on the eliptical. Its easy to feel dumb only doing such a small amount but I will have to remind myself its okay. Everyone is at different levels. This was a push for me. All of it. To get up at o dark 30 and to do that cardio. I forgot my music so I just watched all the super strong people workout. haha Motivating.

Well, I am going to go read a bit ( might as well start more new habits with mny early rise) and then get ready for a rockin day with my kiddos. 

xo,
JL 

                      

Hello there!

I am so excited! I am all set up to blog with my mini Ipad. I opened my Birthday present a few minutes ago and this is me trying it out. whoohoo!!! 

I have been missing blogging but have not had a computer that works properly for a while. When deciding on what kind of computer to get we ultimitly decided to get a tablet and eventually get a keyboard cover I could use to blog with. Its so exciting to be back connected! I told my kiddos I would try this out while they watch me and eat their cereal. haha So far this is great. I love that its a cover/stand for the tablet then a separate sleek apple keyboard to type. Easy for travel and great for homeschool too. 

I hope to be sharing my new journey with you very soon. What would that be? Well, I joined a gym last night and decided recently that I want to start body building. I have a few friends body building and have inspired me so much. I am tired of feeling weak. I just want to be strong! I need to be able to br strong enough to have more kids.  I want to be strong enough to work hard. Go on missions trips and help do hard work. Go hike with my sister to her property in Costa Rica one day.  Ride a bike and not get winded, heck, get on a bike without fear that if I crash all my bones will break in a million pieces. 

                    

I have felt like I can barely open a jar. That is sad. Just wrong. I have felt my bones feel like they are going to break in half. Thats scary. I have been to my Doctor and am working with her on everything. We found out I have HYpoThyroid so I am on meds to help with that. Plus on lots of vitamins everyday to help where I am defficiant. 

Anyhow. More on my goals and progress later. I am just here to say Hi and try out my new setup but that new and exciting things are happening!

Thanks sweetie. I love you and am so blessed you treat me so good! 

I hope you all have a great and fantastic day! 

 Want pictures? I'll leave a few for you. ;) 

              

Leela misses me all the time. I have not started baby wearing her and she does not like when I have to leave her on the floor to make lunch.  She is getting to be a fast little crawler. I love it. Too adorable! She does not cry all the time. She really is a great little baby. She loves attention and snuggling. So she is happy to play for a while but then she wants to suck her thumb and have her face in my neck. Weird I know but so cute, 

              

We snuggled on the floor Sunday night. I LOVE how snuggly she is. MAkes my day to feel her warmth and feel so needed and loved by such a little human being. 


I started using a fun new app called Paper. I LOVE sketching fashion designs out with it. Its been great doing that again. I hope once we are settled in the new house I will be able to pick one and sew it into real life. ( oh yah. We also recently moved into a bigger place. A house! We LOVE the space and yard and neighbors. Its been SO nice having a yard fenced for Tobin to run and play in.)


                

Its me! Have not taken many pics of myself over the past while. Less selfies happen when I am without my iphone. Which I gave up because I was on it way too much. So far The ipad has been an easier fun electronic to have but too inconvient to hold when nursing or cooking and such. I will continue to keep a goopd balance. Blogging again will be so much fun. Kailani insisited she take my photo. She did a pretty good job too. 



                      

Finally, Some words to inspire. Its true. When I had Leela Naturally I repeated in my mind 
" I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. " I found so much comfort and strength in that during the hard contractions. It was amazing because I truly would not say labor was painful. It was difficult and uncomfortable but it was not pain that I know. I use this to help me with anything else. I know I am capable of hard work when I remind myself that I had a baby with no drugs. To me that is an amazing feat. 

I am excited for my future. I am excited to achieve results but patient and know they will happen in their own due time. I will share Before and after / current pics and updates here. be on the look out! I have my first PT appointment tomarrow at 5:30am! So exciting. 

Well, Thats all for now. I'll share more pics another day. I need to get back to my kids who just finished their breakfast. Because....I love them and .....

                           


              Miss you all friends and family. 

                          xo, 
                      Jenn-lee 











Sunday, April 13, 2014

Needs sanity


Today I came home after church ready to have dinner. We were all soooo hungry. Kids and husband were all reaching for snacks as I sent them all to leave the kitchen so I could heat up the quiche I had made.

Flash back to a few days ago I told Daniel to make sure nothing is in the oven when hen he started pre heat because I had caught Tobin putting Sophie's dolls in there a few times. I knew I needed to get a baby lock but figured I'd just do that at the he new place since we are almost moved out.

Today I turned the oven on and had the thought to check like I had recommended and just as I was about to I heard Sophie scream. She fell off the bunk bed ladder and hit her head on the floor and was pretty upset. I consoled her and helped her change out of her church dress into her favorite kind of outfit to cheer her up. (Pants and a skirt) 

I remembered I needed to get back to cooking and walked into the kitchen to see lots of smoke coming out of the top vent of our oven. The vent that's under one of the range burners, yikes. I opened the oven to see Sophie's doll burning to her doll death inside. Lots of fire.  

I freak yelling to Daniel there was a fire. I knew to keep the oven closed but other then that I for some reason just freaked out. (Totally horrible example to my kids) we used to have an extinguisher but I am not sure where it went during out last move. Anyhow. Daniel threw some baking soda on that poor doll and it was out right away.

Meanwhile Tobin keeps asking what happened and "bire scary bire hot" he said he was sorry to Sophie. Sophie had a good cry. She is so sad her Sonia doll is gone. Luckily they have the same doll still for sale at Target. They really are cute dolls. 

this was her doll before: so stinking cute. 



This is her doll now...



Sad right!?  Seeing a cute doll burning is really freaky looking too. Guess we'll be going to Target soon. This was Sophie's favorite doll. 

What's more sad is how It completely freaked me out and my kids because I forgot to stay calm. Now I know. I'll be better next time. Wait.. There better not EVER be a next time.  Yikes.  

This is Tobin now...


He knows what he did and is obsessed with standing by the oven to talk about it. Hard to stay mad at his cute face for too long. I will be definitely use a oven lock at the house. 

He says "needs" before he tells me what he wants all the time. "Needs food mom!" 
"needs drink mom!" This has been a tough week for him. He has been a bit naughty and really trying for attention in all the wrong ways. I feel a bit crazy because of it but I know we will be back to normal life this week and things should get better. 

This is me saying 

"Needs sanity" 



Friday, April 11, 2014

Scrubby the bunny




Crazy morning. 


Lost Anakhas bunny Scrubby. We had not seen him all night and this morning. How does one lose a bunny? 


Tobin insisted he threw scrubby off our 3rd floor balcony.


 Anakha was so so upset to think she would probably not see him again.  We looked for him outside but did not find him. 


It was a very sad stressful morning. 


Then....


 Kailani found him.


 In an empty bedside table drawer. Anakha put him in there last night while she tidied her room and forgot about him. Lol 


poor bunny. 


Every one is happy now that he is not gone forever.  



Thursday, April 10, 2014

Baby haircut and thoughts.



Her hair was growing so funny and patchy. So we decided to give it a short buzz to let it all grow out evenly. She now looks even more younger. I sure adore this girl. Lately she has been a major mamas girl only wanting me to hold her. Crying lots if I am not. She has been fighting naps and having lots of diaper blowouts. (Result of adding formula in to help her grow) All this amongst packing up for a move makes for a little bit of a difficult situation on my time. I think she can sense change is happening and I am more stressed and busy then usual. 

I am thankful my older girls help out so much when Daddy is at work. She will be seven months old next week. Wow. Time flies. 

 

I made this as a tablet wallpaper to remind me I can do it. That no matter what tough days there are I can wake up and have a good attitude and try to embrace my best. If I fall short at least I tried and it's better then not right?

Also made this one to remind me to get rid of excuses. Those darn excuses get in the way every time. Enough with them. 


Monday, March 24, 2014

Is any thing too hard for the Lord?



We recently found a home we will rent nearby. Our lease was up soon and we are not ready to buy yet. We know this is still whats best for our family. I prayed and looked prayed and looked. After a few homes I was starting to feel frustrated. I could not let my frustration show to my children who were watching my every step. 

"Heavenly Father has a home prepared for us. I know it. It's okay that home was stinky and gross and not right for us. It's okay this home had too many rose bushes we cared to take on responsibility for. (yikes) Its all okay. Why? Because it means we are just one step closer to finding the right place. "

I would tell my children. 

I thought I found the perfect adorable little cottage. It was in an up and coming historic district of our town. It was so cute. The owner was a contractor. They took such great care if this adorable home. It was old but renovated so nicely. It was in our right price range. It had a beautifully landscaped backyard perfect for entertaining and endless hours of outside playtime. I loved it and asked for an application. My Mr. liked it too. I wanted to apply for it so bad but in my gut I kept feeling frustrated about two things. 

It was on a busy road and had no storage or garage space. I need my little ones to be safe and we need a place to store even a lawn mower. I kept trying to convince myself solutions and that it would be okay but no matter what this battle in my head was going on. I prayed for help to understand what was best. I asked God to help me know the solutions to those issues if this was the right home for us. (Did I mention this home was adorable and I really wanted it to be the right place?) That night around midnight I was up nursing Little Leela-LaRue and had the impression I should go back online and browse homes again. It was then that I found the home we now will move into in a few weeks. When I looked at the pictures online I knew it was right. I felt like God was telling me, his child just as I was telling my own children,

"Its okay that other home was on a busy road. Its okay. Because I have prepared this home for your family" 

I have not been able to stop thinking about how grateful I feel that once again God has sent his blessings pouring down. Yesterday, I taught a Sunday school lesson about how with God all things are possible. It was so fitting to be able to teach this lesson to these sweet children. Not only to teach it but to also bear testimony of it. In Genesis, we learn an important lesson that God taught Abraham. Abraham was told he and Sarah will have a son. When Sarah overheard and laughed (probably rejoiced as well) she asked if it really was going to happen (she was really old) The Answer given to her was this important question "Is any thing too hard for the Lord?" 

 All things with God are possible. NOTHING is too hard for the Lord. He can move mountains. He has more blessings then we can ever imagine waiting for us when we show faith in him. 

I am not only so excited to move for so many reasons but I know that we were able to find the right home for us for the next few years because of Faith. Because I believed Nothing is too hard for the Lord. He answered my prayers and has sent us a home with not only what I was praying for  (safety and storage) but a few little perks thrown in the mix just for fun to show how awesome he really is. 

One scripture I love and want to end this post with is a great reminder to all. We may not understand how it will all work out but it does. It will always work out according to his will. His will is what is always best for us. God knows whats best and with him all things are possible. 


Proverbs 3:5
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding





XO,

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