"You can make anything by writing."

-- C. S. Lewis

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What Would It Be Like?

So this is going to seem like a downer of a post, which is uncharacteristic of me, but it’s kind of where I’m at today, so I’m going to flow with the muse while I’ve got it.

My back was just beginning to feel better when I got hit by the tree pollen in the middle of the night. I woke up sneezing (which is an odd experience in and of itself), and my allergies were so bad this morning that I could feel my nose literally dripping while I stood at the pharmacy counter at 7:55 a.m. waiting for the cashier to ring up some allergy medicine and a box of Kleenex. Oh, the irony.

All day long, each time I sneezed, I would feel twinges through my lower back. Then Ryan called me and he was having a bad day, and someone asked me if I wanted to order lunch with them and I said no because we don’t have the money, and well, around 10:30, I just shut my office door and decided to have myself a good healthy cry.

Why does it seem to be harder for us than for other people?

Why can’t we seem to get ahead?

Why do we work our butts off just to come out even every month?

What do we have to do to get a job whose work/pay-off ratio comes out a little more proportionately (or favorably)? 

How do people have money for vacations?

What would it be like to have a house that doesn’t need so many repairs?

What would it be like to have money to do the home repairs we need?

What would it be like to have money to do the car repairs we need?

What would it be like to get paid a sum of money for editing and actually be able to use it for the things we want to use it for, instead of seeing it slip through our fingers for bills and necessities that just so happen to come up that very week?

What would it be like to have amazing metabolism and be able to eat like a normal person and not gain weight?

What would it be like to have more than one child?

Why is parenting one child all we can seem to manage?

What would it be like to decide to have another baby and then just… have it? Wow, that’s a novel idea.

It’s not that I’m ungrateful….In all sincerity, I know how to put things in perspective and how to ask: What would it be like to be hit with an earthquake and tsunami and lose all your possessions and your family in a matter of minutes?

I get that. I know things aren’t really that bad, and I know they could be so much worse. But sometimes when I look around at other people, I just think, “Wow, how are you doing that?” Sometimes success just looks so easy from the outside.

I’m not jealous or even unhappy at others’ fortune. I’m not that kind of person at all. I just want to know how I can get in on it, too. :-)

I’ll be fine. We’ll be dandy. Everything is really ok. Tomorrow my pity party will be over, and I will look at the world through fresh eyes… I will breathe the world through a pollenless nose.

I’m just curious, that’s all.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Conquering My Fears (and Other Things)

There have been so many times in the last few weeks when I have wanted to write, but the desire always seems to strike me at the most inopportune times. By the time I’m home and we’ve eaten dinner and homework and chores are done and the little one is tucked into bed, I seem to have lost my muse most evenings.

The biggest news in the last few weeks has been Ryan’s dad’s health. He was having extreme chest pains and was admitted to the hospital, where matters quickly became very serious. Ryan flew down to Florida last weekend to be with his dad and family and came back Wednesday night. The immediate danger is gone for now, but the truth is that we are facing the reality that our parents won’t be with us forever. Ryan already lost his mom when he was 13, but I guess we’ve always assumed that our parents will be with us for another 20 or 30 years.

The older we get, the more our views on aging seem to change. For instance, when I was little, I thought 60 was old! But now that my parents are in their 60s, I no longer think that. Even my active and energetic grandma at the age of 81 seems younger than I once pictured 81 to be.

Justin Bieber’s mom is 34. Now that’s scary. Someone my age dealing with her child being an international heart throb? I feel way too young for that. But I digress.

I’ve been dealing a lot lately with this fear of losing people we love. I would cry just thinking about the fact that my father-in-law’s health issues were so serious. I’ve always been emotional, and honestly, it’s embarrassing how easy it is for me to cry -- I recently broke down in tears/sobs while interviewing a lady for a magazine article about infertility and adoption. It was so unprofessional and embarrassing!!!

So in the midst of all this, God brought to my remembrance that scripture in 1 Thessalonians 4:13 about “mourning as those who have no hope.” I do have hope. So why am I acting as though I don’t? Why am I acting as though the world would end if someone died? And they haven’t even died yet! My tears are way head of the game. It’s crazy.

Take it from me: fear can be crippling. There’s nothing more twisted than the game Satan plays with our minds, creating scenarios of horror that don’t even really exist. When I’m desperately afraid of something, it becomes impossible for me to focus on anything else, as long as I let fear have its way with me.


“Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”    – Philippians 4:8

This is what I’m learning to do. After all, God didn’t give me a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind!

He is in control. There’s no reason for me to go crazy worrying about it. I must let Him be Lord over my emotions.


Ryley had a teacher in-service day on Friday, so Ryan took her to see the pirate exhibit at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.

It’s not that I don’t like museums, but really I do get more bored than my husband would like me to. :-)  It’s definitely a Ry-day sort of activity.

She came home all pumped up about pirates:



Pirate gear included, I really like this picture! :-)


She’s definitely a daddy’s girl.


In her love for science, Ryley has recently decided she wants to be a meteorologist when she grows up. She and Ryan even set up a vase full of water in the kitchen so they can chart the rate of evaporation.

So when she had to fill out a poster about herself this weekend, this is what we came up with:


It was all her idea. She’s so proud of it! Ha!!


And today was the last day of the Girl Scout cookie sale. Mommy is soooo glad that’s over. :-)

We worked two cookie booths at grocery stores. It was cool to see Ryley become so confident in asking people to buy, but it was sad how many people actually ignored her and walked by, pretending they didn’t hear. But it’s good for her.



I pulled out my back/hip a week ago, so our house is a mess, and I feel largely unproductive. But I can only do what I can do, right? It’s been long enough now, though, that I am thinking I should probably see a doctor about it.

In the meantime, we are totally hooked on this hilarious video. Ryan and I almost know all the words we’ve watched it so many times:

Happy Daylight Savings! :-)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Just a few snapshots of our daily lives this past week:

Ryley and I had a girl movie night on Friday…


But apparently I picked some boring ones! So Ryley spent the time doing my hair instead of watching. :-)


This was the backseat as we ran errands on Saturday….Everyone’s all buckled in and behaving nicely. :-)


Ryley turned the TV on in our room, and America’s Next Top Model was on. That’s not really what I would consider appropriate programming, but I got a kick out of Ryley doing her best impression of a model’s disinterested pose. :-)


Sunday was the first day since New Year’s that we’ve all been out of school and work on the same day!!! Ryan has had to work every weekend for three months. So we skipped church and took a nice drive before heading to our friends’ Oscar party.

Ryley had never been to Red Rocks before, so we started there.


We had forgotten that there are a zillion stairs up to the amphitheater. While dozens of 20-somethings with iPods and yoga pants passed us by at high speeds (apparently it’s quite the trendy work-out destination), we fat people had to take a break every six or seven flights. :-)


Ryley and her babies are SO cuddly in their matching PJs! Thank you, Coleen!


Today after school Ryley and I had a hankering for Noodles and Co. She just looked way too grown up sitting on the stool next to me!


Then she discovered a good climbing tree on our walk tonight. She looks confident, but don’t be fooled. I had to help her down! :-)


She’s still my baby. :-)


Because Ryan works a lot, he doesn’t make it into too many photos on here, and I know it may seem like this blog is dedicated to my relationship with Ryley alone. But I just want to say that I feel so, so blessed to be married to such an amazing man. Ryan is truly my very best friend in the world, and every day God shows me another way/reason that this man is so perfect for me. Not perfect. :-) But perfect for me.

I love his heart.  I love the inner workings of his mind. I love the way he explains things. I love the way he treats people. I love the way he works so hard. I love the way we can laugh about it all.

I love the way he disappears to the kitchen whenever something on TV becomes uncomfortable to watch (i.e., Michael Scott). He’s got this tough exterior, but he’s so incredibly tender inside.

Several times a day I text him the words: “Remind me to tell you about….”

Most of all, I love the way he loves the Lord and trusts Him with his life…with our lives.

I still find it funny to think that, back in high school, I consistently prayed for my future husband -- that God would keep him “wherever he is and whatever he’s doing.” And he was sitting next to me in Algebra the entire time. :-)