what I'm planning this week: tasks, books, meals, and more

After a couple of weeks of not being well, I'm finally feeling 100% and much more motivated to tackle a to-do list again. :) It seems so strange that writing down a list of goals helps me get them done, but the list definitely helps and I'm always happy I made myself do it after it's done. :D

here are this week's goals and menus:

// do //
pray alone daily
exercise 6x 
sweep and mop all of upstairs
order maternity belt
declutter 3 kitchen drawers
hang curtains in dining room
hang large mirror upstairs
change baby bed sheet
plan out month of April in detail
work on upstairs threshold trim
order 2 light fixtures
get propane tank refilled
clean downstairs for guests

// read //
1-2 hours of George Mueller's autobiography
Bible daily: 1 Peter, Psalms, Isaiah

// learn //
listen to two sermon sessions from The Shepherd's Conference 2017 + one podcast

// be // 
patient and perseverant 
I have probably listed "patient" here recently, but I’m needing more and more patience as I’ve been tired lately. :) We have a couple of big school projects, outings, and events involving work happening in the next month and I need to just keep moving forward, doing the next thing. :) I need the Lord to help me do the right thing so that I can continue with a steadfast, faithful spirit. And while the Lord's working that miracle, I'm going to be praying for a sweet attitude on top of all that... :P

Thankfully, I've got Paul encouraging me in the Spirit 2000 years ago:

As for you, brothers, do not grow weary in doing good. 2 Thessalonians 3:13

last week's stove prep: sautéed cauli rice, corn, beef, polenta (not pictured), + tea

// dinners this week //
beef + bean burritos with rice, watermelon
spaghetti and meat sauce with salad
baked potatoes with beans + jalapeno cornbread
barbecue grilled chicken sandwiches + fries
scrambled eggs, turkey bacon, and oatmeal
dinner out

life lately: spring break, shopping, and sunshine

Oh, March... :) You are ridiculously lovely in Texas:

This growing baby girl has certainly been enjoying all the fresh air lately: ;)

And the children have been too. I think they spent six hours one day collecting snails, tadpoles, and frogs:

And then, with the growing bump (and the growing children) grocery shopping weekly is a must these days:

We really only needed fresh produce, but anytime I can get out of Sam's for less than $200 it's a good day: ;)

The main items I really went for were these gigantic cucumbers. It's been such a weird craving this pregnancy! I can't get enough of them:

Unfortunately for me, no amount of cucumber could keep away the horrid weeklong cold/flu that was going around. Zane and Noah had it, and they so generously gave it to me a week later. ;)

Life can't stop when mama is sick and still has stuff to do, but much to the delight of the children, we were forced to take a spring break after all. :)

Later in the week I finally made a special stop to find some hydration:

And by last weekend I was feeling much more like myself. We took a hike with my dad:

Enjoyed more sunshine and fresh air:

And then we snuck away on a quick date to grab a bite and this delicious Sacher torte at La Madeleine:

Ahhh. So far everything I've tried there has been delicious! I have yet to be even slightly disappointed with their food. :) mmm.

This week, it's been back to school again as we finish up our last 6 weeks of Classical Conversations. We aren't far from the end now. It's going to be summer before we know it! :)

morning, noon, and night (life lately)

When a friend asked me if we were taking off for spring break this morning, I replied with I'm not sure yet (since we just took a week off for winter break). But the internal debate is definitely still raging because I've been tiiiiireeed these past few weeks. :) Maybe it's the wrangling of six kids or the growing of number seven, but phew. I've needed lots of naps lately. :P 

I guess it could also be that sleeping at night is MIA right now. George Mueller advises you (in his autobiography) to get up as soon as you wake up for the first time, but on my early-rising days I wake up at 10, 11, 12, 1, 2, 3, 4,... multiple times per hour. I get so worried I will miss my alarm that I startle awake and obsessively check my phone every time I wake up. Like 10x per night. :/

Random bits of my life I'm sure you wanted to know. :P

Good thing you can't see my tired eyes here since we were all blinded by the North Texas morning sun: ;)

And speaking of sunlight, I might be biased but I think East Texas has some of the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets. This was Saturday's sunrise:

And this little lady apparently wants to see the sunrise too these days:

She decided to put herself down (on top of everything) when we wouldn't take her to her room for her designated 11 a.m. naptime. :P 

She didn't stay there long, thanks to her 3-year-old brother, but had a catnap in the car instead and was thankfully mostly happy during a quick Sam's run:

(I say quick- I honestly wish it took a little longer to drop $300 there... ahem. :D).

We've been going for more walks in the evenings, and on a rare occasion even Zane gives up and takes a late nap. :D (waking up in hysterics, almost every time!)

falling asleep last week

Last night we grilled out after our walk:

The kids begged to sit outside, and it was perfect:

Tired and all, somehow we seem to make it through each day. It's not always easy but when I step back and look at the bigger picture, it's so beautiful. We're all living, growing, and moving, and it's amazing. The Lord orchestrated all of this- everything- down to the very food He provided for us to eat for dinner. My mind cannot comprehend how or why He decided to create us and place us here together, in this time, and give us all these precious people to love. 

I can't understand it, but oh, I'm so grateful for all of it. I am in awe of God's kindness to me.

goals this week (march 1)

This weeeeeeeeek... oh how does Wednesday get here before I turn around? :) We've had lots of events happening over the last week or so, but surprisingly I don't feel terribly behind (though I realize I'm posting my to-do's on Wednesday, ha!). I keep asking the Lord for strength to accomplish what I'm afraid I won't be able to do, and He helps me get everything done that I need to!! I don't understand why He cares about my silly tasks and small concerns but He does (!!), and I'm humbled by how much He loves me.

Here are my goals for (the rest of) this week:

:: do :: 
pray alone
wash 2-3 sheet sets
exercise/teach 5-6x
library trip
find lost library book
clean house for guests on the weekend (scrub bathroom, sweep every room + under sofas, mop)
clean master shower
organize games in cabinet
edit project
CC family presentation (done!)
bring brunch item for Grandparent's Day

:: read ::
1 Peter
Psalms (7 chapters) + the book of Mark

:: learn ::
3 days of 1 Peter study by Jen Wilkin
listen to 2 sermons + 2 podcasts

:: be ::
gentle and quiet in spirit. (1 Peter 3:4)
I want to to ask God to help me desire to say less and remember the Word that restraining your lips is wise (Prov. 10:19). When I seem to do the worst with my words is when I fear losing something I wrongly treasure (ego/pride, favor, position, control, time). It all sounds quite terrible when you say it aloud! BUT if I trust in God, I can be silent and at rest even when x, y, or z feels threatened. I no longer have to be right, and I no longer have to fear not being in control. I want to seek God's strength to help me be quiet and gentle in spirit by trusting fully in Him and His goodness and plan.