Wednesday, August 30, 2006

This ain't your average Leave it to Beaver day!

This is the typical day for my children.

Get up, go to the bathroom. Go to babysitter's, eat breakfast.

If you're Luke, play and watch videos until Kindergarten. Go to Kindergarten. Go to Grandma Jenny's room. Go to Grandma Jenny's house. Get picked up by Mom.

If you are Drew, Evan, or with a bunch of kids on an Amish/Mennonite farm (I say both because the grandma and grandpa are Amish and the rest are Mennonite...still, no TV, but there IS electricity and plumbing!). Get picked up by Mom.

Once all have been picked up, go home, play until dinner is ready. Eat dinner, take a bath, wrestle with Dad, scream because Daddy wrestles too hard, pick a fight by giving Dad a wedgie, scream some more, read a book with Mom or Dad, depending on who is available and not completely exhausted. Go potty, brush teeth, say goodnight prayer, lay awake without even TRYING to be quiet while obviously NOT going to sleep. Get told to go to sleep and stop talking a bazillion times....possibly get a spanking...get up, potty again, talk some more, sneak a toy in to the room (we don't even keep most of them in their room anymore because of bedtime), finally sleep. Wake up. Start over.

HOWEVER ----- SOMEWHERE in the course of the last 24 hours these events have managed to squeeze their way in to our routine:

1. Drew and Evan tested for Speech Services. Both were very cooperative with the Speech/Language Pathologist they worked with. They thought it fun to visit Bubby's "stool" (school) and get a tour of the building complete with a visit to Mammaw Jenny's room...where her refrigerator was stocked and ready!

2. On the way to the babysitter's to pick Gabriel back up after Speech screening, Luke announces: "When I grow up, I want to be a vegerinarian." "Hmmm...." I think to myself. "This ought to be good..." "Luke, what IS a vegerinarian?" "I forget." "Oh." (Pause) "Is a doctor for the Veggie Tales?" Pleased with myself for my corny question, I laugh. Luke says, "Why are you laughing?" I answer, "Because you said vegerinarian. Do you mean veterinarian?" "Yeah." "What does a veterinarian do?" I ask. He answers, "I forget." Good to see he has direction.

3. At the babysitter's, since Luke has not been out on the farm for a while, he wanted to go in and help get Gabriel and some things we left there in our hurry to get Drew and Evan to their evaluation. He goes in, says hello....etc. On our way out, we walk past the shop that the babysitter's husband works from. Luke is following me. As I walk by, the man jumps out at Luke, and Luke screams then laughs. He looks at me and says, "That gave me the hibbity gibbities!" I was cracking up! He said, "What?!?! He scared me to deaf!"

4. We got home and within about 2 minutes, Chad pulled up. We all were relaxing before going to Luke's Kindergarten open house. We get ready to go, we should be WALKING OUT THE DOOR when Drew, who had fallen asleep - obviously exhausted from the lack of a nap because of the full day - walks in to the bathroom where I have already decided to go. He's half asleep and has to pee, and he can't get in because I am already there. I hear him saying, "I have to pee....Tan't (can't) wait...." and start crying. Next thing I hear is Evan screaming, "EWWWW! Drew's peeing on the wall!!" I hurry out, and walk around the corner where Drew is standing with his body pressed up against the wall. I look at his feet. I don't SEE anything that appears wet. I said, "Drew, you can go in to the bathroom now. I'm done." He won't unpeel himself from the wall. I realize he is half asleep and I said, "Drew, Honey, come on," as I am pulling him as nicely as I can do it in this urgent situation. As I am pulling away, (remember we're supposed to be WALKING OUT THE DOOR) I see why he won't pull himself away from the wall. He begins to really cry now because pressing himself against the wall was the only way to stop himself from peeing....instant fountain. At the EXACT same time the fountain is erupting, Luke was trying to wake up Chad because HE had fallen asleep. Apparently he tried waking him up a few times without success and tried something didn't go over well. I heard two swats to Luke's behind. Now Luke is crying and running away from Chad, Drew is peeing on the wall and wet, Evan is grossed out and talking a mile a minute about who's in trouble and who is doing what, Gabriel is standing between the running Luke and the peeing Drew and the frustrated me. AMAZINGLY, I threw clothes on Drew and we WEREN'T late for the open house.

A day in the life at the Monize house.......never a dull moment.

Monday, August 28, 2006

This is fun!!

Ok...I am having the most fun!! I need it after my exhausting day.
Basically, you go to this site and you put your name in, and it comes up with slogans for you!! :) HEHE!

So here are a few for the people I think MIGHT see this:
1. It's Shake -N- Kendall. And I helped!
2. What can Dan do for you?
3. Moms like you choose Angie.
4. This is not your father's Holly.
5. Melts in your Megan. Not in your hand.
6. Chad - the Freshmaker
7. Silly Rabbit. Micah is for kids!
8. The Todd sign means happy motoring.
9. My anti-drug is Teresa.
10. Let's face the music and Ruth.
11. Good Kevin has Danish written all over it.
12. Josh is job 1.
13. Is it live or is it Jenny?
14. Don't get mad. Get Bob.
15. Only the crumbliest, flakiest Audrey.
16. I wish they all could be Angela girls.
17. Got Darcey?


God really worked on me today. I'm glad....

I feel validated, more peaceful, more hopeful, safer in some ways....and completely exhausted.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Mold me

I think I sing the songs asking God to take my life and reshape it, reform it, break it, cleanse it, and renew it. I think I sing it and I believe it, I want it more than ever.

But I don't think I let Him. I let Him have the stuff I know He can fix, but many times I lack the faith that He will fix the really hard stuff....the stuff that my flesh won't let go of...the stuff that I want to "have a say" in how it gets fixed. You know?

I have to learn to lay it at His feet and NEVER pick it back up.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

That which is Sacred

I have become a firm believer in holding dear that which is sacred...maybe in some cases not soon enough...

What is sacred?

The Word of God
The marriage covenant
The role of a parent
The witness to others
The worship of God
Time spent with God
Time spent with family
Learning from a wise confidant
Fellowship with believers

When someone messes with any one of these, I find myself raging against him...or her. I can't control the anger or let it go.

I want to shout from the top of my lungs and depth of my being: LEAVE IT ALONE! Don't stand in the way of me and...

My time reading the Word
My relationship with my husband
My guidance of my children
My witness
My time or ability to worship
My time alone...just me and my Maker
My time spent with family
My ability to seek counsel
My gathering with Christian friends

I don't understand why people who claim to be Christians mess with any of these things.

Why would you continually seek to meddle or even to "innocently" stand by if you knew it was hindering a fellow believer...when you claim to be one yourself?

Have you ever tried to let something go but found that you just couldn't? The more you try, the more it creeps back in to your life. The more you pray, the more it insists on rearing its ugly head. The more you try to ignore it or put it behind you, the more Satan sets it right in front of your face.

I realize many of you have NO idea what I am talking about...but suffice it to say that I have prayed and prayed for peace about this thing in my life...that God would take it away...that the one causing it would move away or figure it out and quit!...that somehow I could move past it. It's been a long time, and I am tired of carrying it.

Matthew 11:28....I have to give my burden over to Him and let Him carry it. I have to take on His yoke. I have to stay steadfast and think about the things that God will use to bring me closer to Him - or the things that bring my family closer to Him.

Someday it will all be washed away...

I want that perfect peace that passes my understanding....I want to be wrapped in His arms and comforted by His Word. I want to feel safe. I want to be understood and respected.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Anything you have to compromise to get, you never keep.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


So the other night, after seeing my grays creep back in to my crown, I decided I could take matters in to my own hands, save a few bucks and highlight my hair.

I ended up looking like a tiger because I guess I didn't let it process long enough. I did not afford you the luxury of pictures because I was so embarrassed...and to make matters worse, today was my first day back with students. You know it's bad when a 5th grader sees you after an entire summer and says, "What the heck did you do to your hair???!?!?!" Or when a FELLOW TEACHER says, "You're looking quite like a tiger today," and growls at you.
So at the risk of my hair falling out, I decided to head back to town, purchase a more normal color with an easier highlighting technique, and started over. This is just 2 days after the first blunder. At this moment, my highlights are processing....I hope it turns out much better.

Until then,
Ton-etta the Tiger.

***8/23/06 EDIT: As of last night, the tiger population in Greentown has diminished by one.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

A journey begins tomorrow

When the doctor handed Luke Jacob to me in the early morning hours of August 4, 2000, I was overwhelmed by relief of his good health, thankfulness for this gift, anxiety of being a first-time mommy...I heard the story about my husband who, after 21 hours of labor and 3 very intense hours of hard labor and pushing and some really intense moments, saw his first son, went to the hallway where his parents, my dad, and my step-mother were listening and praying quietly by my hospital room door, and collapsed weeping in their arms as he was overcome by joy and emotion over the birth of this beautiful, black-haired, pointy-headed little boy with long fingers. I remember thinking that he was the most beautiful little creature I had ever seen. (Since, I have seen pictures, and honestly, the other 3 were much are all c-section babies....) I also remember what it's like the first time around. Everything is new. The world seems to stop because you have a new responsibility and a new joy. I remember his first fever...not knowing what to do, who to call, wanting to know it and not have to ask for help. I remember laying almost every night until he was about 18 months old on the couch with him on my belly, smelling all clean and fresh after a warm bath, listening to him breathe, feeling his breath. I can remember thinking when I found out I was having another baby (or babies) that I didn't know if I could love another child as much as I love Luke. There's something about that first child....

I can remember when he went for his first shots, his first surgery to get his tonsils out (which literally took 17 minutes), his first day in a real Sunday School class and not just the nursery, his first hair cut, his first step, his first day at preschool, the first time he held his baby brothers...

I remember the first time that he repsonded to a question and made me think for a change. Then I think of the time this past week....we were walking in the back door and Luke was supposed to be helping me carry in some bags from the van, as were all of the boys (even Gabriel had a little bag). He couldn't carry all of them at once, so he was taking the first load in. I was inpatient with him and didn't understand why he wouldn't just TRY to carry them all at once. I was tired, and I was trying to carry my bags while stearing a 1-year-old in to the house in the dark. I lost my temper and I yelled at Luke. His spirit is so tender...he cried, "I don't like the way I feel when you yell at me!" Immediately, something inside me felt like it broke. I couldn't put my finger on it at that moment...but later, after they were in bed and the bags were set aside to unpack the next day, I thought about it. Here was that little, gooey-eyed, black-haired, snuggly, beautiful little baby boy of mine all grown to express his feelings when I was being mean and unwilling to to extend compassion or patience. Aren't boys supposed to have a harder time expressing these things??? The next day, he was playing with his brothers. I called him in the room so I could talk to him. I simply said that the night before I had treated him badly and had been mean, that I should not have yelled at him because I was frustrated, and that I loved him very much and was sorry. His response was so sweet. He leaned over to me, put his arms around me, and said, "Mommy, I forgive you" this point I was shocked that he used those words instead of "it's okay" or something like much more powerful is "I forgive you'?...."because you are the best mommy ever! You were just having a bad day."

That's when I realized. He is so much a person and not just a child. A person with a thought-process, a heart, a mind, a soul...

Tomorrow he begins his journey at Kindergarten. At one point, I thought I wouldn't be emotional about it. Today it has hit me like a ton of bricks. My little boy is on his journey to becoming a man.

God, grant me and my husband the wisdom to steer him on to Your path of righteousness. Help me to know how to handle him and his gentle spirit..even when he's not being so gentle. As new challenges are bound to come, help me to look to You for the wisdom I'll need to help Luke, Drew, Evan, and Gabriel to become men after Your own heart. Forgive me when I have failed to show them Your love and when I have been a bad example. All of You and none of me....Amen

Monday, August 14, 2006

What an amazing view....

Well, we're finally back home. It's nice, I must say...even though the mess was enormous...I had help from Chad, which is very very good. Thought you might like to see the way it started.... This is what you would see in the dining room (small, isn't it??).

And this is a picture of the bathroom.

Now it's all back together and there are a few minor things Chad will finish up this week unless something unforeseen happens.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

"When I Grow Up..."

Today as we were having one of my favorite dinners (breakfast for dinner with eggs and pancakes...mmm), I was sitting next to Gabriel and the boys started in talking. It went a little like this...

Drew: How do you mate (make) pantates, mommy?
Me: Well, it's not that hard...some time I will show you how. You'll be pretty good at it.
Drew: My tan't wait to be a drown (grown) up and det bidder (get bigger) so my tan mate pantates.
Me: When you grow up you will all be able to make pancakes or whatever you want for dinner. And you will all have your own house....and you will marry a girl...and you can stay up as late as you want...
Evan: And we tan have our own plates! And tups (cups)!
Drew: YAY! Tups!
Luke: And we can make cookies whenever we want and watch movies and stay up late.
Drew: And we will have our own stuff - like touches! (couches)
Evan: And toys!
Luke: We won't have toys....but we will have our own rooms...well...sort of.
Me: What do you mean "sort of?"
Luke: Well, we will marry girls and we will sleep with them.
Me: (somewhat more alert at this point) Oh. Well you don't do that unless you get married.
Evan: Yeah. First you det married and then you det babies.
Drew: Like Mommy and Daddy. Mommy ate us.
Me: What?
Drew: You ate us!
Luke: (Laughing) No she didn't!
Drew: Uh huh!
Me: Drew, I would never eat you!
Drew: Then how tome we were in your tummy?
Me: Because God put you there to grow until you were ready for the doctor to take you out.
Evan: And we dot bidder and bidder and bidder and her tummy exploded.
Me: It definitely felt that way!
Luke: You silly goose, (to Evan and Drew) she didn't eat us. When the mommmy and the daddy decide to have a baby, they tell God and then God puts a baby in the mommy's tummy.
Me: Right.
Luke: But when I grow up I am going to stay up llllaaaaattee!!!!
Me: That's fine. But you will have to have a job to pay your bills. What will you be?
Evan: Superman!
Drew: Batman!
Luke: can't be Superman and Batman. They aren't real. (Shakes his head at me and rolls his eyes) I want to be an ice cream guy.
Me: What do you mean?
Luke: I want to make ice cream.
Me: I hope that is enough to pay your bills.
Evan: What bills?
Me: Like for water and electricity and groceries.
Drew: We will have our own droceries?!?!
Me: Yep! But you have to be able to pay for them.
Drew: My will have my own cereal! And my own room. And no dirls! (girls) Yuck!

Somewhere in there was the part where we talked about how it didn't matter what you had or did as long as you were living the way Jesus wants you to live and being his friend...

Then it was pretty much time for a bath for all of them....sticky syrup! Their conversations
amaze me every day!

Friday, August 11, 2006

A few odds and ends

Odds and Ends #1:

I just had the thought that a week from right now I will be laying in bed as I do every year since I could remember realizing that the next day will be the first day back to school. From the time I was in elementary, to college, and even now on the "other side of the desk.." or piano, in my case, I have always found it EXTREMELY difficult to sleep the night before the first day back. I find myself thinking of all the years past and where I have come from...what lies ahead....all the while staring down the clock with those thoughts....they come every single year.

"I have to get some sleep. In 5 hours I will have to be up.........Seriously, clear your mind. You're gonna be dead in the morning and now you have to get 4 boys ready......In 2 and a half hours I will want to kill myself......CLEAR YOUR MIND!......Black space black space black space....nothing....nothing................5th grade choir this year???.....NOTHING!!! I MEAN IT! NOTHING!!!!!"

I don't know. Maybe that doesn't happen to you...but it will to me. Always does.

O & E #2:

Tonight, I went in to Kokomo to Papa John's for my husband and his blues band. They were rehearsing, and several had not eaten yet, so being the EXTREMELY wonderful person that I was, I was going to pick up the older 3 boys from a church in town who is having VBS, so I said I'd make the run for them. When we didn't turn on the familiar roads, Drew (oldest twin) asked where we were going. I answered that we were going to Papa John's to get pizza. Immediately there was a resounding "YAY!" from the backseats and then a weaker but still excited "Yay" from Gabriel who is determined to be exactly like and do everything his older siblings say and do. Then Drew pipes up with, "Mommy, won't that take a while? I'm hundry now!" I thought about my answer first, trying to figure out why he asked that question. He's been to Kokomo a hundred times...he knows how long it takes....then the light bulb went on. My mom's husband's name is Jon. When I said "Papa John's," he mistook it for "Pappaw Jon." My mom and Jon live in Montana!!! :) So I explained it and laughed all the way to Kokomo! Ah...that Drew! What a keeper!

O & E #3:

The bathroom should be finished this weekend, I hope. That means, I will HOPEFULLY be able to move out of my dad's and back to normal. Our poor dog has been alone for so long. We go over a few times a day to tend to him, but he is SO starved for attention. I know Dad and Jenny will be glad to see us go, and I don't blame them! Let's all pray that things go well and there are no set backs.

O & E #4:

Gabriel doesn't have a crib at Dad's. He doesn't do so well in the room with the other boys without being confined to the bars of a crib, so we have been letting him sleep in the living room. Yesterday morning, when Chad left for work, he returned to our bedroom with a sleeping Gabriel. Sometime during the night, he had wandered in to the kitchen, found one of Chad's baseball cleats, and cuddled up with it like his stuffed dog he loves so much. Too cute! I wish I had a picture of it!

O & E #5:

I should say, to those of you who have been reading this past month or more...
I am not out of the woods. I realize that God is still at work. Although I feel much better about the way things are coming together, I still have some pretty dark moments. (Don't worry...I'm not headed for the nearest bridge or anything...)

I have realized that sometimes my own thoughts are my worst enemies. Satan is an opportunist. He's just waiting for a chance to get a foothold....a chance to confuse me....a chance to hurt me.... He is waiting for me to allow him to affect my thoughts. Isaiah 26:3 is my new favorite verse. It promises me -not just peace, but - PERFECT peace if my mind is steadfast (focused on God) and if I trust Him. I have repeated the verse over and over to myself in the past 3 weeks or so. I have been given a new hope because of these words.

I know God is directing my path. He is my life line. He has refocused me. He has renewed me in many ways.

That doesn't mean every day is exactly what I want and hope for, so I could still use the prayers...but it does mean that my outlook has lifted considerably! Thank you to those who have helped me by praying for me! Please continue!

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Raw sewage & Birthday those GO together?!?!

I haven't been on here for a long time. Sorry for that to anyone who actually reads these!

Here's the latest update. My last entry said we had a problem with the toilet...well, it is a HUGE thing that we are still not done with yet! After my last post, I noticed while using the plunger one more time, that sewage was actually squishing out between the base of the toilet and the floor...EW! (It's actually beyond "EW" - but how do you express that? ) So after several professionals and a few dollars , we found tree roots in the sewage line. In the mean time, we can't live without toilets and sinks (oh yes, EVERYTHING was backed up with it...) so we had to go to my dad's...all 6 of us! Thankfully, he and his wife don't seem to mind our invasion...or at least they don't show it!

So tomorrow, we begin the process (and by "we," I mean "Chad") of ripping out all the flooring (which has rotted out in several places in the room because of the ongoing problems) and replacing subflooring...mmmm...amidst the mess that was previously squishing....ICK! I have to say, I don't envy him! BUT I AM glad that he has the knowledge to do what he is about to do. Sorry, Sweetie!

Today (the's actually the 5th now, I realize that...) is/was Luke's 6th birthday. Drew and Evan turn 4 on Monday. So tomorrow, we have a joint birthday party. Of course, I spent WAY too much money on them...but there ARE 3 birthdays at once! I do have SOME sort of excuse.

Well, that's about all I have for now. Sorry for the delay, but as you can see, we've been a little topsy-turvy the past week!