I am a wife, mom, volleyball coach, nanny, and teacher! I spend my days taking care of the boys, working out, coaching, and subbing for local elementary schools...learning how to follow the Lord's leading for our lives.
Driving to work this morning I was reminded of the beauty, grace, and forgiveness God gives us ever day new. I love where we live, and seeing the sunrise over the hillside is stunning. I feel like God put it there just for me today. The classroom I'm in, my Dad's today, overlooks farms and has such a beautiful view, and with the sky painted all different colors, I can't help but be in awe of our creator. What in inspiring place to work, Dad!
Nancy, my fabulous scrapbook friend, notified me tonight that Christmas was a month ago, and I needed to change my blog. Thank you friend, you were so right. Couldn't get Leelou's to work...but her's look super cute! I'll have to try again soon. Guess we need a new family picture now too...
Been thinking about foster care again, I feel as though it's been put on my heart again. I talk to people, hear stories, read blogs, and really feel like our family could make a difference. So for now, just praying about a possible class starting in March and going for four weeks, will you pray with us?
Over the break, Hannah and I got some chances to have some good conversations on some runs. One of those was about God and listening to Him in our lives. She had a verse...help me out Hannah? It was about waiting on the Lord. But what does that mean? Do we wait for Him to drop something in our lap, or do we actively wait, making opportunities open up and then wait for His leading? What is really God's voice, and what is our own that we are trying to make God's voice. Being home with the boys now so much, I really feel like I have an opportunity to have a family ministry and impact and change lives for Christ together as a family. What is Your will, Lord?
Andrew had his first paid day off Monday, so we went out to the Children's Museum. It's a fun place where kids can just be kids. We enjoyed the time together as a family, and they boys had a great time exploring and playing. The water was a highlight as always. It's so fun to see how Jakey is getting older and listening a little more...just a little though. It's hard to believe that Jakey is exactly the same age that Noah was when he was born...crazy! Noah seemed older, but I think we have just forgotten.
I didn't get any great pictures, in fact, I gave up after two rooms and just enjoyed the time. This picture of the boys is so funny because it shows them perfectly. Jakey is wet and crazy, and Noah is playing calmly...but I love them both. It's fun to see their personalities come out more, I'm loving it. Noah had a friend from preschool and his mom and brother over today. We made pizzas and had cookies...a special day. It was fun getting to chat with his mom, she is a child advocate, so we talked a lot about fostering. This little boy is so sweet to Noah, they are both pretty shy, and I think each other's only friend at school.
We are a few weeks into Andrew's new job and loving it. I feel like I have so much more time in the day, and am really enjoying all the extra family time. Before we would both be working opposite schedules, so we really weren't together very much. Now we actually have a full weekend (3 days this weekend!), our evenings together...it feels so normal!
The boys are also doing much better with being dropped off places--they gladly go in now. Preschool, the gym, and church are now not a stress again, which is so nice. You want your kids to be happy when they go somewhere, and I think having things be more consistent at home have really helped.
I'm so grateful for this next step in our lives, and can't wait to see how it's preparing us for things later down the road. Thank you, Jesus!
In college, I had to take a class that discovered four different "life" questions.
1. Who am I?
2. Why am I here?
3. Where did I come from?
4. Where am I going?
Of course I hated the class because it was a gen ed. I hated most of my gen eds and thought they were pointless. I had some big disagreements/arguments with some professors (there were four who taught it together...a big class) who tried to teach me that evolution was where I came from...at a Christian University...um...yeah.
Anyways, those are big life questions, and an important part of who we are and our plan for our lives. Andrew and I were talking last night about plans. It all started because Andrew says he is trying to eat healthy and not drink soda (insert husband bashing here...not to mind all the McDonalds sodas and bags when I got into his car this morning...ok, that's enough, that is not the purpose of this post.) He bought a six pack of the sodas you get from a vending machine yesterday before dinner. ok, no big deal. So when I got home later in the evening, three were gone. Typical for Andrew, but not when he's trying to cut back. So I asked him what his plan was for the rest of the 3 sodas. Ok, maybe a bit controlling, but if you don't have a plan, they'll be gone by the morning! He thought that question was ridiculous...which maybe it was considering it's just soda. His answer was he would drink them when he was thirsty. Cool. Or not if you are trying to cut back. This lead to a little conversation about how when you don't plan, you plan to fail, whatever. Which really means he has no intent of cutting back on soda or eating healthy, which was good to know so I know what to expect. Anyways, totally not the point of this post. So we continued on with this peaceful** conversation.
What are your plans for the next month, 6 months, year, 5 years, 10 years of your life? Do you know what your spouse's are? Do they match up?
Do we let life happen to us without a plan and just see what happens? Or are we intentional about where we are going in this life. I believe that we have a direct impact on what happens in our future, although we are not in total control...HE is. In one month from now, what do I want to have accomplished? Really, do we know, do we care? It was kind of a wake up call for me. I might have the year plan in mind, or even the 5 year, but am I doing things to make them happen? Does it matter?
I stole that line from an Ice Age song, but I really do LOVE food...Andrew and I both enjoy cooking nice meals and have friends over to share with them, it's actually probably my favorite thing to do. While we were in NH, of course we ate amazing food! Andrew's mom is a great cook. Our first meal we ate when we got there tasted so good, I just had to try it. It was a traditional Spanish meal (Andrew's dad's side is Puerto Rician). Andrew's mom is so helpful with trying to teach me, and doesn't get frustrated when I call her a million times. Thanks Cindy! So I called her a few days ago, got the recipe, and set out for the Spanish market. They didn't have everything I needed, so I had to do a few extra things homemade.
Actually, I should say I, because Andrew ended up doing most of it for me! I had a volleyball tourney yesterday, so I called him and asked him to put the meat that had been marinating in the fridge for a few days with a homemade marinade in the oven. No problem. Then I figured I'd rush to finish the rest when I got home. Well, I came home to a clean house, totally done dinner (including the extra things we had to do from scratch that I was not looking forward to). I hopped in the shower and didn't do a thing all night. No dishes, nothing for the boys, no clean up, no playing host, I was served all night! I really enjoyed myself after a long day of volleyball, thanks Andrew!
After dinner, we all played Settlers of Catan, the best game around. And we had the. most.amazing.cheesecake.ever. Ben and Karen brought it, and oh my, it was so good, and so hard to limit myself to one piece... We can't wait for an encore tonight, though we are just doing ribs and settlers...and Nate and Anne's dessert! And Jared and Kellie have expansion packs for Settlers...so they're coming and bring them tonight...let the games begin! We love having such good, positive friends who are always there for us, thanks guys!
We are part way through week one of Andrew's new job/our new schedule. It's going really well so far, I am loving being home, and having time to do all the things around the house during the boys naps so I can actually play with them when they are awake! Before I would get home from work, do dinner, clean up the disaster area that was our house, and then maybe squeeze in some play time. But I get to spend so much time just being with them! We've had some good meals, the house is clean, and lots of quality time. I am so glad for some normalcy! It is so hard though to turn down jobs, but I know there is a bigger picture in mind here.
Yesterday was our day to fly home from New Hampshire. Great trip, relaxing, and good memories with family. I think we were all ready for us to come home and get into a good routine again. So we were checking into our flight about 4 1/2 hours before online. We saw we were missing our connection to get back to Portland, so I called United. Well, after about a 1/2 hour, they said it would be several days before we could get back to Portland. That just wouldn't do with Andrew's first day with Nike today. So I said we would split up, could he get Andrew home? Yes, if you can get to the airport in 1 hour 45 minutes. No problem, right? Well, we had to finish packing, and drive the hour to get there. He also said I should come and try and fly standby. So everyone rushed to help us throw things in our bags, get the boys ready, carseats in, etc. It was a tornado. Stress filled the air, but we made it. Who knows what we forgot, but we arrived at the airport with 40 minutes to get checked in, through security, and on the standby list...that's not much time with two SCREAMING kids. In our rush, they missed food, so were hungry, we were stressed, and trying to get all of our poorly-packed stuff through security. It was a mess. Andrew made it, and took Jakey with him (insert sly smile here...he's crazy). We had to divide diaper bags and toys, and what little snacks we had, but they made it on. Did I mention both boys were still in full fit mode? Noah and I did not, so I was left with a screaming child and no promise as to how we'd get home.
I talked to 4 different agents all saying I could get to Chicago, but it would be days before I could get to Portland. That just wouldn't do, who was going to watch Jakey for Andrew's first day of work? So I decided to talk to just one more agent. Noah's still screaming. He said he could get to Denver (if we ran) and out in the morning for sure, with standby tonight. And a hotel and food if we didn't make it out. Ok, that's better. So we ran. And we stopped to buy Noah an airplane so he would stop SCREAMING! And we made it on the plane. In separate seats, in separate rows. Both middle seats. No one would trade. Here is my 3 year old who won't stay in his seat next to two huge men, poor thing. No one would trade, I couldn't believe it. So a male agent started yelling at me, saying why would I book to separate seats...ok, like I would do that? Another lady agent bravely came to my rescue. She defended me and started offering $100 dollar vouchers to anyone who would switch seats. Four people ended up moving so we could be together, in the last row...with two inches of leg room. But we were together and we were getting closer to Oregon.
The flight went great...don't tell Andrew who was in tears over Jakey who was literally screaming the whole time. It was so bad they gave him a free beer. ;) We got to Denver and waited to see about standby. Several hours later, after 153 trips up and back on the escalator, McDonalds, and lots of books read, they started boarding the plane. It seemed like forever until they announced the plane was checked in full. But we waited. Every time they called a name, Noah said, "No, my name's Noah!" I'm not going to lie, I did encourage him to go over and say, "Do you have a spot for me?" But they didn't. This whole time, we prayed together and talked about how God would take care of us. I felt a peace, I just was trusting the Lord. When does he not take care of us?
So after they announced a few more names and people got on the plane, I started to get emotional. The lady walked away. We stayed. She came back and said she could get us on. Not together, but just to go find any seat we could. I was crying, thanking her. I told her how important this was, and thanked her. After walking to the back of the plane with no empty seats, only one in the exit row where we could not sit, the lady paged me. "Ms. Boria, please come back to the front of the plane." I was sobbing now. I thought we had to get back off after coming so close. A lady I had befriended and who felt sorry for me was talking to the flight attendant about giving up her seat for me. So sweet. They said, "No." Back up at the front, the lady asked me to move to the door. Still crying, I did. Then she said, "Right up here." and pointed to first class. What? After all of this? First class? Still crying, Noah and I took our seats. Another flight attendant came over and reassured me. I told her our story, and she gave me a hug and said how happy she was we were here and that she would take good care of me. So was I. Noah saw me crying and said, "Mommy, are you sad? God took care of us!" No, I was happy, and realized how God always provides, but not always provides, he gives us His best if we are fully trusting in Him. Bruce and I had some conversations about this during the trip, so I felt like it was a little message from the Lord, reminding me of how true it was.
So several drinks later, after dinner, Noah and I leaned back and read some books together, we played with his airplane for hours, and enjoyed the time talking in comfort. It was a special time, and we prayed and thanked Jesus for taking such good care of us...and He really did.
Happy Birthday to my dad, one of the wisest people I know. I appreciate all the love and support he has given to us over the years...and can't wait for many more! I'll make you a special birthday meal when we get back to celebrate:) Happy Birthday!
We've had a great time the past few days hanging out with all our family in New Hampshire! We got about six inches of snow today, and are supposed to get between 12 and 20! We've all loved spending time playing in the snow, especially Noah. Jakey is done after about a half hour. Gotta love these two boys eating popsicles:)
Alli and Jakey
I spent the day today with Bruce shopping, talking, eating...perfect! I love getting the chance to have some deep conversations with him. Every trip we take some time to get out just the two of us and talk...it really means a lot to me. I always appreciate these times. He bought me that headband from J. Crew...what good taste;)