Friday, October 28, 2011

The Pumpkin Patch Monster

The Pumpkin Patch!!
I don't mind to admit that this is one of my favorite fall events that we do as a family, however med school hasn't allowed for it for the past two years.  So you can imagine how excited we....OK.... I ....was to finally be able to go back this year.  I wanted it to be perfect!  The sun was shining the temperature was amazing, I couldn't have asked for a more perfect setting.

And then obsessive compulsive mommy joined the party....

I was so busy trying to dress everyone in the perfect fall outfits and get them excited for the event....that I drove everyone crazy.   It would be safe to say that I started to suck the fun right out of the day before it even took place.  
My husband understanding my need to recreate this perfect image that had been building for the past two years, just silently stood by and allowed my tirade.  I am blessed with an amazing man that calmly reminded me of all of 
the reasons that I had had for going on this outing in the first place, none of which had anything to do with clothing or shoes.  

 Despite my initial attitude we managed to have a wonderful family day filled with great memories.  I guess even Mamas are entitled to temper tantrums every now and then...right!

My lesson.... 
To relax and just let things happen.  Today I learned what perfection really looks like, and to my surprise it has nothing to do with outward appearances. 

 My children managed to have an amazing time even though they weren't wearing the outfits that I had envisioned for them....  And I managed to have a wonderful day with my family, even though my girls weren't wearing perfectly matched hair bows!  
Thankfully I transformed from the Pumpkin Patch Monster back into the mommy that my kids love,  in plenty of time for us all to really enjoy the true beauty of the day!

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Weekend At Camp

We had a great time last weekend at camp with our family.
There was fishing, fishing, and more well as a train ride.
We saw some amazing fall colors and made wonderful memories.  We are so blessed to have such an amazing family and we love getting to spend time with them.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Peace Sweet, Sweet, Peace

I have a secret......
Our whole life could quite possibly be uprooted and completely and utterly changed in the course of the next several months....Again..... and I am not concerned in the least.
Seriously, not in the least!

 I am not the same woman that I was before I gave God control, I have learned and grown so much.  I have seen something made out of nothing on multiple occasions.  I have experienced true joy in the middle of hardships and seen light emerge out of complete darkness.  I should be scared and worried but instead I am excited.... 
                     excited to see what He has for us next.

This kind of peace can only come from knowing that the one that created the sun and gave source to it's light is the same amazing provider that is in control of our journey.  That doesn't mean that we aren't about to be faced with some pretty difficult stuff, it just means that we will still have joy in the midst of it all.  

Todd will begin his interviews soon and the process will begin all over again, waiting to see where God will move us or if He will keep us here.  We are once again solely dependent on prayer, asking God to close the doors that aren't part of His plan.  I know that no matter what God chooses for us He will be provide us with all that we need to not only survive but thrive.  His plan is far better than anything that we can imagine for ourselves, so if He says go then we will joyfully go and if He says stay than we will do so enthusiastically.  

It is so freeing to know that this burden isn't mine, God is the one working this all out while I tend to the duties that He has assigned to me.  This is His concern and I have no need to worry or fear....what a wonderful feeling  it is to be free of these heavy burdens.  

If there was one thing that I could give to everyone it would be....Peace!  I have lived both with and without it and there is no comparison, I wouldn't go back to that life for anything.

But let me clarify....Having peace doesn't mean that you don't have things to worry about, it just means you choose to let the creator of the universe deal with them instead.

OK God, the Bramlee Family is ready when you are!

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Colors of Fall

Today as I sat and watched the beautiful shades of orange, red, and yellow fall around me I was reminded of why I love this State.  This is a gorgeous time to live in West Virginia and I am so thankful for the beauty that surrounds me.

This is one of those times that you wait all year for and when it finally gets here it seems to pass by so quickly.  These beautiful colors on the trees aren't here for very long and if I don't take a few moments and take them all in then I might miss what I have been waiting so long to see.
It is so hard to sometimes take the time to just look up.... but WOW what an eyeful I get when I finally do.

This seems to be a reoccurring theme in my life....look forward and wait for something....and then watch it pass by in a flash.  I look back at so many celebrations and events in our lives only to wish that I had enjoyed them more.  I want to learn to relish in every moment not longingly looking back or anxiously looking forward, but to live in the glory of today.

Seasons in our lives pass so quickly and with every new one comes new adventures and celebration, all worthy of my full attention in that moment.  

I am going to try to look up more and not get bogged down with everyday stuff, because if I am not careful I just might wait to long to look up and realize that although I accomplished a lot of routine things I missed the true beauty that was with me all along.

So today......
I am thankful for the cool gentle breeze, the floating array of colors, the laughter I hear through my window, and the tiny drumming of infant toys.  Tomorrow will have it's own joys to discover but for now I am going to focus on the beauty of today.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

An Unwanted Visitor!

We have had an unwanted guest come to live in our home and quite frankly I am not happy about it!
I am not even sure when he came to stay with us but it is high time he hit the road.

It is one thing to have a pleasant guest but it is completely another thing when that guest repeatedly leaves messes everywhere and has no regard for other people or their things.

I can't say that I ever see him do these things but my children must, for they seem to know him better than I do and see him perform his mischievous deeds.  Whenever I wrongly suggest that one of them may have left a mess they are quick to inform me that Mr. Not'me was at it again.

So to you Mr. Not'me, you have worn out your welcome and need to pack your things and be on your way. 

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Monday, October 10, 2011

Blessings Disguised as Struggles

I am working under a new attitude, I am seeing things differently and praying for a joyful spirit.  Don't get me wrong I didn't say that I was good at least not yet!  But I am striving to achieve this new goal.

Homeschooling at Valley Forge

So today I am going to spend time thanking God for our blessings that are disguised as struggles.  These struggles force me to rise above where I am as a mother and a teacher.  I have to constantly improve my knowledge and awareness to be a better parent....and I am thankful for that!

Now, I didn't say that I am always joyful or even come close to being all that they need me to be everyday, but I am a better person simply because I am challenged.  I wish I could tell you that I always enjoy this challenge or that I complete it amazing well consistently.  Thankfully, "His mercies are new every morning",  so I have the opportunity to do better everyday.

Struggles aren't punishment they are opportunities to become something better than we are, keeping us from becoming stale or stagnant.  God doesn't create our hardship but like any good parent He allows us the privilege of working through them on our own accord, but His gentle hand is always waiting to catch us if we fall or celebrate with us when we succeed.

What if I didn't have struggles, what kind of person would I be?

Thank you Lord for allowing me to have these struggle disguised blessings, but please never leave my side because the climb is so much easier knowing that your hand is waiting to catch me should I fall!

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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Anareese Turns One

You were born on October 1, 2010 and you weighed 6 pounds, 8 ounces, and were 19 1/4 inches long.

You were born in Charleston, West Virginia at Women and Children's Hospital and delivered by  our good friend Dr. Paul Dietz.

You now weigh 16 pounds, 12 ounces and are 26 1/4 inches long.

You have learned to make your way along the furniture and have recently started exploring everything that is on your level or remotely close.  

You love to laugh and are always trying to make people laugh at you.  

You love to blow raspberries and do so whenever anyone looks your way.

You don't have a favorite food (which is the problem), but you have started eating 
mashed potatoes, green olives and a few other things occasionally.

You love it when your big brother and sisters play with you.

Your smile is so big and bright it makes everyone around you smile too!

You are always on the move and love to follow around behind Mama.

Your favorite words (and only words) are "dada" and "hi", still no "mama" yet.

 You have already visited Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.

You had your first plane ride when you were 9 months old.

You love to play with your toy house and kitchen.

Your favorite game is peek-a-boo.

You love it when I sing your special song so you can sing along with me.

You bring so much joy to this family, we are so blessed to have you in our lives!

Happy First Birthday Sweet Baby Girl!

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