Thursday, December 30, 2010

Here's to 2010!

  While the end of 2010 wasn't the best I am thankful for a lot of things that happened to us this year. We saw a lot of change and we were most definitely blessed. Not only did we welcome another member into our family, but a business was started, our first family car was bought, we got our first family pet, Leif's job switched from contractor to federal employee and we were able to celebrate another birthday with our daughter.

I see even greater things happening in 2011:)  

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Life with kids.

    Recently I thought about why I wanted kids. I remember not wanting them in highschool and in college. Then I met Leif and I suddenly wanted 5 of them! I wanted to have a family with this person I fell in love with and wanted to marry.  I happened to be on twitter and saw that had posted a link to a blog post about "Why Do You Want Kids". The blog post talked about how most answers that parents come up with aren't good enough for those who aren't parents.  It also brought up that article that was in the New York magazine about how sure, you love your children but you hate your life. Pft!

  I don't really want to go into the articles... I realized that I tend to be careful about what I say about being a parent. I have a lot of friends that don't want to have children, or thinking they have time to put it off. I know they read these articles and believe them.  I listen to them tell me what life is like with children, even though they have none. I listen while they tell me how you never get time with your spouse/significant other. I listen when they tell me about how hard it is to go out on dates or travel. I listen and nod. Sometimes I say things like, "no its not like that" but it gets ignored. This isn't to say that I think that everyone should go out and get pregnant. I don't think this. But I get tired of hearing things from friends who aren't parents, about what life will be like. Especially when I'm sitting there, as a parent.  Never have I judged friends who don't want kids, but its hard knowing that some of them judge me and my choices.

  It bothers me that my friends believe that deep down Leif and I are unhappy. Or almost feel bad for us. I can't tell you how many times friends have apologized to me for the fact that I got pregnant at 20. It always catches me off guard. I don't feel sorry for myself so why should they? I love my children, AND I love my life. Leif and I have to plan out our dates and some weeks we both work so much that we don't get to actually talk to each other until we're going to bed.  Most of our vacations are spent visiting our families, but what's wrong with that? We have to start setting money aside for Riley to do ballet or gymnastics. Because of this I probably won't get my gym membership as soon as I'd like. It could be worse.  There are other new costs that come with having a toddler, almost two. But, while that means that we sacrifice going to the movies every month and having cable, we use our saved money on other things that Leif and I enjoy. Now that the kids are getting bigger, we're excited that we can now start planning for a small family trip and next Fall we're hoping and praying that going to France will work out for the two of us.  We can't just pick up and take a weekend trip the way we used to be able to, we just have to work at it. We just have to try now. It doesn't bother us, and it doesn't make us bitter towards life.

  I sound almost defensive... I just want to share that yes, our lives have become a bit more complicated but we love every moment. Leif and I feel so blessed that we have been able to have children, that we were given such wonderful gifts.  I don't think parenting is for everyone, but it is for some and that should be respected.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Whats Next

      We're experiencing a lot of change around here.  Beck is slowly leaving the baby behind and getting closer to becoming a toddler.  I feel as if his journey to toddlerhood marks the end of a chapter for Leif and I. Riley's little brother is now more of a playmate and best friend.  My diaper bag is becoming lighter, and the bottles are now gone.  I get excited when I think of life without a baby. Not that toddlers are so much easier, but its different. To the married couple who aren't parents, this isn't that big of a milestone but it is for us.  We've had babies for the last two years and I don't even remember life without always holding, rocking and feeding a baby. Riley had about three months as a toddler without Beck but I don't recall it that well...

    I think this new part of life we're about to enter has made me want a baby a bit. But then I remember that I need to enjoy now. I feel as if I missed parts of Riley's growing up because I was pregnant or had to watch a newborn. If we're meant to have another baby it'll happen when its time.  For now we are about to be parents to two toddlers. Lots more potty training and funny stories ahead for us!

  I'm going through a personal journey at the moment as well. I think the reason I haven't been blogging is because I wasn't ready to talk about this. I'm ready now. When I said I felt forgotten here in Monterey, I didn't mean by friends, I simply meant by God. I am sorting out what I believe. I grew up a certain way, and was taught a certain way. What to believe, who to be believe in. Even when I was at Biola and they challenged us to question our beliefs I was too afraid to. I remember once, while at a Buddhist temple, I thought maybe what I've grown up on is wrong? And that scared me so I never thought about it again.  But now I think about it often. I talk about it. God says to love Him with your heart and your mind.  For me it has always been mostly my heart. I'm an emotional person. I love with everything I am. I'm impulsive. This is why Leif is perfect for me. He's the opposite when it comes to things like this. He approaches everything from an academic standpoint and doesn't base things off of feelings.

    I am struggling. Really struggling. I believe in a God of love and grace. I believe He has made us equal, as in, we are all created in His image.  Yet, the church has told me that homosexuals aren't equal. They don't deserve what the heterosexuals deserve.  To me that goes against God's nature. I've seen the church use politics and take advantage of people. Men aren't perfect, they are human. But its hard to watch someone lead a congregation and have a staff that is corrupt because, at the end of the day they're just like you and I. They'd have you think otherwise though.  I defend the church. I say every church is different, make excuses for them, but more and more I think I'm wrong.  I want to have hope, because I'm a hopeful person, but I think this process is needed. If anything I'll just learn more about God and myself. Send me some prayers or positive vibes or whatever:)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

This Season of our Lives

       The past few months have been trying on Leif and I.  I'm not even sure where to start. We've broken down a lot in the last few weeks.  We've been frustrated and angry.  There have been tears and lots of questions. "Why are we in Monterey?!" "Why are our kids growing up so far from their grandparents?" I know personally I've been upset with God and impatient with Him.  I know there is a reason we are here, I know its important for something but we aren't seeing answers.  That's hard on us.  We haven't been happy, content yes, but not happy. We're tired and worn out.  We feel as if we have no control and we have to just sit here and watch what unfolds. Isn't that how it is though? From work to not being able to go out alone to the kids sleeping in our bed instead of their own.  Things around the house keep breaking and we think we're ahead but then a doctor bill comes. We don't want to use credit cards but somehow we end up using them.  Nothing seems to go the way we planned. We've been in situations where nothing went according to plan but for some reason this time of our lives is especially hard.

    We were driving down to Southern California for Thanksgiving and Rileys birthday (I have to post about our now 2-year old!) and Leif and I talked about how this is just a season.  It'll pass. Before we know it we won't be in Monterey, and we will be living near family and having to adjust to that. Our kids are going to be sleeping in their own beds for the rest of their lives so why worry about them wanting to be close to us now? There will come a time when Leif and I can go on dates as much as we want, we should take advantage of the family time now. Work will have its stressful moments but thankfully Leif has a job and my business has been growing. We can pay our bills and buy food and put gas in our car.

    Its hard living when you feel as if you can't stay above the water or find your footing. It really breaks a person when you constantly feel discouraged.  I've never experienced this before so I'm really overwhelmed and unsure of what to do or how to handle everything. Normally I feel so prepared and know how to handle what life throws at me. But not this time. Dare I say it? I feel as if we have been forgotten here. I know this isn't true, but thats how it feels.  I'm comforted though when I remember that this is a season. Be it long or short, its a season.  And we will get through it.

  I must say the kids have been a constant reminder of goodness and joy for Leif and I.  We are so blessed, even in times where it seems like nothing is going right.  I know that I speak for both of us when I say that our babies have been the best things that have happened to us:)

   On to brighter and better things! I've been posting more frequently on my photo blog, photos of the kids and other things. Check it out! Just posted a new post about making changes in 2011! Photo blog!