Monday, February 14, 2011

V Day 2011

I guess I really am one of those people who just doesn't get into Valentine's Day!

I completely forgot about it all weekend long, and then this morning was woken up by a beautiful, MASSIVE bouquet of roses from Niles! I am really in shock and can't believe he got up so early and ran out to grab them! He also got Reese a really cute pink and red turtle. I guess Cameron just has to get used to V-Day being about the girls. Although... I suppose that was where I did an epic "mommy fail" because I totally didn't do anything for either of my children for Valentine's!! Welp. There's always next year!!

I may try to cook something... That's a gift around here.

Realistically, what I would LOVE to be doing right now, is driving out to Borders. Because my new BFF in cyberspace and fake reality, is the Pioneer Woman and I LOVE and ADORE her, and she is literally 40 miles away from me, RIGHT NOW!!!
I would really, really, really like to be in the car with my children right now to obtain a signature and photo. =)
BUT, alas, it s Monday. A workday. For me and my husband. I also have two children, one that requires two naps a day, one of which would be right now, as we speak... the same "right now" in which I should be standing in line at Borders to meet my BFF.

Fingers crossed... maybe we'll head out after naptime, and just maybe the line will be dwindling, and just maybe she will stay until the store closes because I imagine she is that kind of awesome friend. =)

Stay tuned!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Ahh, A Successful Day of Parenting...

So I usually think of myself as a pretty good parent. I love and adore my kids with a fiery passion and even with my full-time job, still feel like I make a massive effort to put my parenting as a major priority - structuring my day around how I can get them out of doors to play, how I can work in a playdate with friends, trying as much as I can to limit the TV-babysitting to as much of a minimum as I can at all times (which I fail at quite a bit, but which I also really, really try to do!!!).

Today was a beautiful day of spending an amazing amount of time really, really playing and enjoying my babies. Lately, as Reese is speeding towards the terrifying time where I have to send her to kindergarten at public school, (a system of which I have never personally had any sort of issue with until faced with the reality of sending my precious baby there... now I feel like I'm losing her to "the world" - judge me if you must. But I spent each and every year and school day of my life in a school where we prayed, read our Bibles, learned Bible stories and talked about Jesus... EVERY DAY. Openly. In public and without any opposition or "tolerance" issues) I realize how sweet, special, and priveleged I feel that my sweet little girl really, actually wants nothing more than my unbridled affection, attention, company and love. A few hours of playing Barbies and coloring when what I really want to do is read Pioneer Woman's story of her romance to Marlboro Man and his chaps, has now started to hold new meaning for me. And in actuality, playing with Barbies actually goes by remarkably fast, and truthfully, I don't have to create any imaginary scenarios because Reese really just tells me exactly how the whole thing will go. I basically just have to repeat after her. =)

So today we started off, as we do almost every Saturday, with daddy's pancake breakfast, cheesy eggs and sausage! Niles has become sort of a pancake aficionado. He tries to get creative - red velvet pancakes, pumpkin pancakes, strawberry/banana pancakes, chocolate, etc - but really, Reese and I get most excited over the basic chocolate chip (butterscotch chips for me!) variety, much to his Food Network-loving chagrin. Today was basic chocolate. Reese had a minor fit, as there were no additional chocolate chips... but we moved past it. She ate and then immediately resigned herself to the couch for a round of Barbie. Since this week was Reese's big old 5th birthday bash, we were kindly bestowed about 10 new Barbies, along with a Barbie pool, Barbie equestrian set complete with horse, Barbie "glam purse" complete with a mock iPhone with fake apps, and several other Barbie sets I can't even remember. Our big focus today was on the Barbie/horse combo. She also got a few My Little Ponies. So, as most horses do, her large Barbie horse laid eggs, which hatched little My Little Pony babies. Interesting... But I digress...

I totally played Barbie/horse for at least a good 45 minutes or so I believe, before we moved onto some reading of her new books she also received this week, and then after Niles left, we did science experiments!! One of her classmates gave her a science kit for her birthday, and we put it to good use. It was actually really fun!! We made "lava", and combined different sets of citric acid and baking soda along with colored tablets, etc. while playing Taylor Swift radio on Pandora all morning! I can honestly say that I enjoyed every moment of play time with my precious girl.

We had a great morning completely absent of all television, so I took the kiddos to the library and let Reese pick out like 10 movies, tons of books and she played on the computer forever while I ran after my son who was adamant on climbing onto every chair available, pounding on every vacant keyboard, pushing his stroller aimlessly into walls, cabinets and tables, screaming (really cutely) every time I removed him, and raced as quickly as possible away from me as soon as he saw me coming. Oh wow. He's adorable. Seriously though, he was exhausting me. Completely. But when I try to get upset with him, he stops, looks at me with the cutest most mischievous little look and I melt into a little puddle which I'm sure he would promptly jump in the middle of if he weren't taking off running in the opposite direction.

After the library, Cam took a great nap, and Reese and I did her schoolwork, read books, and jumped on the trampoline until dinner time.

I sincerely, most genuinely, fully and completely am in love with my children. I cannot even imagine my life without those two little beautiful babies.


And thanks to the HEAVENS, will never have to.

My. Kids. Are. Awesome.

Jealous?!?!  =))

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Eve

When Niles and I got married in October 2002, I honestly believe our first major fight (as newlyweds, that is) happened on Christmas Eve of that same year. You see, in Niles' family, there is a calm exchanging of gifts after a nice dinner at the local Olive Garden. The participants are his parents, his brother, his sister, and himself. They go out for dinner (a tradition I found altogether weird and yet, once I started engaging, found really nice and relaxing - no cleanup or setting of tables) to the OG, then return home where they each get 1 or 2 gifts each. Then they may stay up, watch a movie, play with their new gifts (b/c even now the boys actually get things they can PLAY with - our first year it was remote control jeeps and foam swords, last year it was Nerf guns... ahh boys), snack on Christmas food from neighbors and students from the University, and then go to bed.

Calm. Laid back. Fun, but also not too loud considering there are only 5 or 6 people involved, now that I'm in the picture.

Not so in my family.

Christmas Eve in my family means there are my dad's two sisters and husbands, their four children, two spouses of those children, and five grandchildren. Then of course, my mom, my two brothers, my sister-in-law and our kids as well. Usually someone involves at least one dog as well... It is not calm, it is not laid back, it IS fun, but it is definitely LOUD. Like, LOUD. Lots of chanting ("presents, presents"... and then when it's someone's turn, "Lindsay, Lindsay..." and such. But we also make other variations of the chanting. Sometimes there may be some banging involved, sometimes a little "under-chant" of the person's middle or last name... maybe a nickname. Usually clapping, and sometimes we've been known to do the "wave" as well. The wave one does at a baseball game with a full stadium - not the wave one does with their hands), dancing, decorative bows being placed on heads, bodies, babies and children, etc. We usually potluck the meal and scatter all over the house to eat without a lot of etiquette or placing of silverware or napkin rings. We do always read the Christmas story, I mean, we are Christians after all... The presents usually involve something passed down from my grandparents who are no longer alive, a gift that my aunt found at Sam Moon or from a street vendor on a local trip, and then usually some Starbucks gift cards. Seriously, it's really a crazy night of fun, noise, laughs and general hysteria. In other words, awesomeness. This is what I'm used to.

When Niles and I got married and he came to his first Christmas Eve with my family, I thought he might curl up in the fetal position under the tree and cry tears of fear. He was so completely overwhelmed and exhausted within the first 10 minutes of it all. And if you know my husband, you should understand that the words "loud", "hysterical", "fun", and "exhausting" are not foreign to him. They are, in fact, part of his general make-up. Ironically, though, he is exhausted by the collective force of my family's ability to celebrate in high gear. We fought, not because he did anything wrong, or I did anything wrong, but because I could not understand why he was not enjoying and participating in the madness. I was so hurt and offended by his lack of comprehension and ability to celebrate up to Cole par, that I told him he was ruining Christmas for me. HA!! Oh, the newlywed days. =)) We really should have discussed holiday traditions in our pre-marital counseling. We may have waited another year. =)

But seriously. Nowadays, I know not to get offended when Niles disappears at various points of the evening to sit in some quiet corner (bathroom, closet, 7-11 down the road...). I know just to carry on as I normally would with my loud, crazy family members, and eventually Niles will rejoin the party, rejuvenated, and perhaps even ready to participate. Although, I don't hold my breath. =)

Without further ado, and before I write another post about Christmas Day and the general vacation time I've enjoyed... Here's Christmas Eve 2010.

Reese getting hot rolled for the first time. Of course, it's totally dramatic and she looks like Mommie Dearest without the face mask, martini or wire hangers... =) 


Reese's cousins, Coco and Portia

The girls getting ready to lead us in a round of "Twelve Days of Christmas". They assigned us all 'parts'  =)

Coco, Portia and Kiana
Three French Hens!
I'm quite obviously a Partridge in a Pear Tree. 
Bryce and mom are also partridges. 

Reese is a Lady dancing. She played her part beautifully. 
Drummer/Pastor Drumming. There might as well have been ten. 


My beautiful boy with his gammy!

Count on Reese to get comfortable right in the middle of everything. =))

Wa ha Ah say Ah say Ah say... 

Add caption

This is a pretty good image of the chaos that ensues when we try to figure out how we will start the round of present-passing-out.

Best way I can think of to end this post. He's pretty spectacular. 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

My Church. =)

So I'm missing church this morning because Cam is getting his first tooth, and is feeling pretty crappy - whether it's because of the tooth or allergies, or whatever, this poor boy is red, watery, snotty and teary. It's so sad. So I'm keeping him home just in case.

But I'm so glad I did. I have needed some really good, maximized alone time with the Lord. And it seems so difficult to find these days with work, children, no sleep, church activities, and just LIFE responsibilities. I have been so tired, so overwhelmed by emotions (probably because of being tired!), and just completely drained, that I have been absolutely no fun to be around. I'm always whiny, overemotional and sensitive, and pretty much intolerable probably. To be at home this morning has been a tremendous blessing in disguise. Even though I've been taking care of my boy, I've had time to play my worship music loud and uninterrupted; read one of my devotionals during his bath time, while sitting in the presence of God listening to Eddie James sing about the name of the Lord. It has been one of the most refreshing times I've experienced in quite a few weeks.

What I've learned over these past few weeks is that not only can I not survive without the presence of my Father, I cannot function without His peace, victory, and hope. The knowledge of the victory and authority I have over my emotions and my personal frustrations/concerns/issues that I have been reminded of this morning, is utterly indescribable for me right now. I have sat on some things for a while, praying casually but sincerely, that the Lord would help me submit them to Him; but I have not paused to really sit in His presence and reflect on His Word for me, reflect on His nature, His love for me, and I have especially not paused to thank Him and bring worship to Him for what He has already done for me.

But this morning I have had that time.. And here's what God immediately showed me through one of my many, many bedside table books. =)
"You are more than a conqueror!"
Romans 8:17 - Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors and gain a surpassing victory through Him who loved us.
This is not a new verse to me, but because the Word of the Lord IS actually inspired, living and active, it has ramshackled my spirit this morning!! IT's like, I just forgot about His SURPASSING VICTORY!!! How?!?! How does one forget that they are given a surpassing and everlasting victory over their life circumstances and their insecurities and pains?!?!? Because I've been too busy for Him to sit and remember. I've been too busy to rest in Him, abide in Him and find peace in Him. Totally unacceptable!! And I've paid the price for it. (So has Niles ;)

Here's more...
"True victory for the child of God comes when there is still peace in the soul right in the midst of the raging storm - when tragedy strikes and one can still say, "it is well with my soul." This can only happen when you are looking at Jesus instead of your circumstances."
DUH!! I know this. But how easily, quickly I've been shaken... How simple it has been for the world to take that confidence and peace from me because I've felt like everything I've been doing has been too important to let go of in order to give the Lord His time with me.

"The key to having victory is understanding it only comes 'through Him who loved us.' If you are facing problems that seem insurmountable, remember you are a conqueror through Him. Allow God to strengthen your inner man. When you are strong inside you can defeat anything that comes against you."

Thank. You. God.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Mind of Monkey, ed 2

Sometimes words just can't explain...

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Mind of Monkey...

So, Reese is always giving me fodder for blog-talk, but I'm horrible at actually blogging it! Well, no more!
Welcome to the Mind of Monkey... Edition 1.

Sunday morning, Reese and I decided to treat me to a Mother's Day sleep-in/church-skip.
Niles came in to say good-bye and asked us if we liked the shirt he was wearing... Reese promptly replied, "No. Dad, you need to change." As we both started laughing, she looked at us stone-faced, and said, "Daddy. I'm not joking."
When it comes to fashion, girlfriend is not playin' around.

Sunday afternoon (Mother's Day), Reese was racing through the house, running as she always does to some unknown emergency, and she tripped and ate it on the floor. She was bawling her eyes out, and through her heartwrenching tears, said to me (equally heartwrenching), "Mommy, I fell... on Mother's Day!!!"


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Life is good. It's good I tell ya

So, in the interest of updating this blog, if only to make the first thing you see something non-Twilight-related, I will go ahead and write about actual life happenings in the Holsinger home! =)

It is busy.

It is very, very, let me say it, crazy busy.

Reese, my beautiful, charming, funny toddler is now a "big girl" at age 4. She is practically a teenager in her mind's eye. Sometimes I find this extremely unnerving, especially after a recent conversation I had with an actual teenager. If you know me and we have had a conversation about my children, you know that the years from 12 to 18 are especially terrifying to me. I literally have visions of horrifying parties, raves, Reese waving glow sticks, sneaking out her window and wearing mini-jeanskirts with ripped up fishnet stockings that she pulled out of her backpack after leaving my home in a plaid jumper over a turtleneck. I can't even tell you the atrocities that start to form in my head. But I refuse to be the "cool mom" who lets my kids drink underage b/c "at least they're in my home"... and all that business (channeling Amy Poehler in Mean Girls). However, I'm dying to learn the secrets of those parents who raised their children to be open and honest with them, meanwhile keeping a safe distance from their social lives so as not to embarrass them, etc. Does this mean I have to stop yelling at the kids who are mean on the playground?! I don't know... I actually find a lot of satisfaction in disciplining those kids at Central Market - that's where they usually hang out.
Okay, so anyways... back to reality.

Reese remains funny, charming and beautiful, and I absolutely love and adore her. She is quite emotional/sensitive these days and has a hard time with listening, which is to be expected for a 4 year old. But I do think this personality has something to do with the craziness of our busy lives, and the decrease in attention I can give her between my job and the new baby. She had me to herself for almost 4 years, and we literally did EVERYTHING together up until 5 months ago. So, clearly, she has had some major transition to get used to. Bless her heart. I'm making a concerted effort to take her with me for a couple hours at a time to do things, and hopefully the more often we can do this together, the more normal she will start to feel again.

CAMERON, the most precious, handsome little man, with a smile that completely melts your heart, a laugh that reduces me to a puddle on the floor, and eyes that are just out of this world... What can I say?!!? He is just remarkable. I adore that little boy and am over the moon in love with him!! I just want to put him in my pocket so I can have him with me all the time. He has brought so much joy to our family and it truly shows me that when it comes to kids, your heart truly stretches and the love you never thought you could possibly share for another child, just kind of rocks your world. Cam slept in our bed with us for 3 months, half because I was nursing and just needed SLEEP, and half because I just fell in love with my little cuddle-buddy and didn't want to move him. haha... He is totally a light sleeper, so our biggest issue with him has mostly been sleep-scheduling and just a total lack of consistency. He does his own thing, albeit, with a beautiful smile on his face so I can't get too upset with him! He is constantly moving, kicking, standing, flailing... He watches his big sister like a hawk and is so ready to do everything she does! He laughs at her all the time and she is always talking to him and trying to make him laugh. They are absolutely hilarious together.

Me and Niles find ourselves with nary a night to relax or lay low, as responsibilities at church and work and home continue to grow. God has us in a really unique and fabulous time in our lives, but it definitely has its new and exciting challenges! Scheduling our lives on a day-to-day basis has become a necessity, and to plan anything fun or friend-wise is either a totally spontaneous in-the-moment decision, or planned a month out! I love to be busy, but a vacation would certainly be welcome right now. Or realistically, 3 nights of uninterrupted sleep would do, too. Under-eye concealer is my new best friend. But as life and schedules have become so busy, God's grace and presence have become more real than ever before! It's probably because daily, I have had to lean on Him and trust Him with each concern, each and every issue of frustration or worry... I have experienced His movement in my spirit and heart like never before and am literally finding joy and peace beyond comprehension through simply knowing I am His child and He is my King, my Counselor, my friend and above all, my SAVIOUR!! It excites me to feel such a growing desire for Him, and for relationship with Him. I know it means that I'm walking in truth and in step with Jesus and knowing that allows me to lean on Him even more, and trust Him even more with the issues of my heart.

So, essentially, this is an overview of life as WE know it.

And, as I write this, I AM watching "New Moon" which Niles went out at midnight to buy for me on Friday. Don't you dare judge me. I'm fully going to go read Henri Nouwen and maybe watch a little March Madness this afternoon. I'm cool okay!!
And, if I feel like it, I just might make up a dance routine to "Party in the U.S.A." after all that!