From Tracie: December 2009

Thursday, December 31, 2009


Here it is....the last day of 2009.  I have been reading a lot of thoughtful, nostalgic blogs the last couple of days.  Everyone is evaluating their lives over the past year and making plans and resolutions for the one to come.  For me this past year has been one of dramatic changes and no changes at all.  (Does that even make sense outside of my brain?)  I am looking forward to new life decisions in 2010.....moving forward in so many different ways......Changing some things and leaving others the way they are.  How is that for cryptic??  I never have been a person who is open and sharing, and it is the same about resolutions and decisions.  I have a hard time opening up about those things.  Growing up in a family cycle of secrecy doesn't really make for an open sharing adult, but I try to work on this.  It isn't that I don't want to have accountability, I really do, but sometimes things are beyond my control, and no matter how much I would love to change them, there is nothing that I can do.  So why share those things?   And there is that feeling of inadequacy.  I do not want to share a hope or dream, only to have it publicly dashed if it doesn't work out the way I planned.  There is also the thought that you never know who is reading this blog (except of course that I do, because I can see you people even when you don't comment....think about that lurkers!!!) 

This year Katarina is starting a Precept study on James.  I want to be very intentional about helping her to achieve her memorization goals (remind me to pick up some index cards!) I would also like to be more intentional about my own scripture memorization goals.   Jenny, you do inspire me!

I am probably most excited about the work that the Army of Angels is going to do this year and the conference coming up toward the end of the year!  Working for and with survivors of sexual abuse.....inspiring and empowering all survivors of abuse to heal and lead joyful lives.  I can't think of a better resolution than that!  Spreading the word about Angela Shelton and the movement that has been born out of her story and movie.  And encouraging everyone to get trained in Darkness to Light's Stewards of Children program.  2010 is a great year to protect children!

I am still thinking about talking to that cousin of mine about his childhood memories.  We will see how courageous I can be about that!  We have been writing and communicating just about normal life stuff.  Rebuilding a relationship from my childhood is a victory for me!

I want to try to figure out Twitter.....I have resisted it for a long time, but I am giving it a try this year for real.  Feel free to check out all of my exciting chirps!  (I still refuse to call them just bugs me!)

I have some goals and ideas for this blog during the coming up year as well, but we will have to see how that all works out (wordpress, anyone?..........scary!!)  Let me know if there is anything that you would like to see more of...or less of this year.

Knitting Squares!!  I plan to knit more squares this year.  Since I got a digital camera for Christmas I will be able to post a picture of my next batch before I send them out (once we get them knitted!)  I am so grateful to Beautiful Dreamer for writing about this on her blog!  Katarina and I have enjoyed knitting squares. 

I know this will be a year of big changes and I am praying that they will all be in line with God's will for me and my family.  That we will become settled (or not) and walk down the right path with jobs and school and homeschool and everything else.  It is a little exciting and a lot scary.   What about your life??  Any big plans for the year?

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

How Do You Sing YOUR Christmas Carols?

Every year we go on a Christmas light hunt on Christmas Eve. We dress in pajamas and slippers, and take thermoses of hot chocolate and boxes of cookies in the car with us. Then we sing Christmas carols as loud as possible while driving around looking at Christmas lights. Every year there comes the point when we have sung all the Christmas songs we know really well, and we have to start in on the ones that we think we know, but really don't.

Do You Hear What I Hear
I love "Do You Hear What I Hear?" In seventh grade I sang it in a Christmas program. I knew all of the words in seventh grade, and even having a ruptured ear drum didn't stop me from singing them. But with 11 months of not thinking about it each year, I inevitably forget the words, and between the lamb and the shepherd boy and the mighty king, I can't remember who is speaking or singing or praying or bringing gold. 

Once I get to the point in the song where I can no longer remember the right words (and Thomas is no help because he can't remember the words to any song), Katarina, loudly, so she can be heard over me, obeys her own personal Christmas carol rule: When in doubt of lyrics, sing "Joy to the World."

(We sing a lot of Joy to the World.)

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
Rudolph has it's own specific set of problems. All three of us agree on the main words, but the echo words after each line are a battlefield.

Echo Words Example: "Rudolph the red nosed reindeer Reindeer Had a very shiny nose Like a light-bulb..."

This is the problem line: "Then all the reindeer loved him Loved him and they shouted out with glee_________" I know that the echo word to this line is "Yippee!" but Thomas is convinced that it is "Glee!" as in, "And they shouted out with glee Glee!"

It doesn't make sense that they would shout out "Glee!", does it? No.

After screaming singing joyfully "Glee" and "Yippee" at each other for about five minutes, Katarina finishes out the song for us at a level of loudness never before contained within the confines of a single vehicle.

(Our disagreement about this song is so big, I have taken polls and made a video to prove the correct words to Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.)

At this point we sing some non-controversial songs like "Silent Night," "Deck the Halls," and "Hark the Herald Angels Sing." Christmas is better without lyrical fighting.

The Little Drummer Boy
One of Katarina's favorite songs is "The Little Drummer Boy." This song is fun to sing, but I can't help but be confused when I imagine the story we are singing: Here is Mary. She is 14 years old or so. Mary has just ridden for days on a donkey, gone through hours of unmedicated labor in a barn with no one to help except Joseph, and now she finally has gotten her new baby to fall asleep. And here comes the drummer boy, asking if he can play his drum? Is he serious right now? The donkeys and cows aren't loud enough, you want to add drumming into the mix? There is no way "Mary rum ba bum bum." The whole drumming for the baby part kind of ruins the moment for me. 

The Twelve Days Of Christmas
By this point in the night, I can't put it off any longer. We have to sing Thomas' favorite Christmas song, "The Twelve Days of Christmas."  That is right, my husband, who can't remember the lyrics to songs he hears every day of the year, has decided his favorite Christmas song is the one with the most words in the history of song writing.

We do really well through the first few days. Partridges, turtle doves, french hens. The calling birds take a few tries to remember, but then the five golden rings always save us - sung long and at the top of our lungs, "On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me Five Goolldd-eenn Rings!!! Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves and a Partridge in a Pear Tree."

After the fifth day comes the sixth (I know, surprising, isn't it? Aren't you happy that you came by my blog today to learn this important piece of counting information?), and the sixth day brings memory problems...

Thomas: "On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me six swans...six lords a leaping"

Tracie: "No."

Thomas: "Six maids, no, six ladies singing"

Tracie: "No."

Thomas: "On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me six drummers drumming" (what is with all of the drumming at Christmastime?)

Tracie: "No."

Thomas: "On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me six french hens."

Tracie: "No, that was the third day."

Thomas: "Six pipers piping."

Tracie: "No."

Thomas: "On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me....."

Katarina, interjecting loudly: "Six Crazy Heads!"

Ahhh, Christmas fun. When in doubt of the words, and after your parents have already said no to more "Joy to the World," make up your own words. It is funnier that way, anyway!

The Mommy Mess

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

-It's Begining to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Merry Christmas to all of my blogging friends!  See Y'all after the New Year!

And a special shout out to Don....thanks for the new camera!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

-Hello Blog World.....I Am Home

We had lots of fun in Arizona, but I am glad to be home with my wonderful I just need to finish unpacking and organizing (I am such a procrastinator) so that I can catch back up with everyone out in blog while I am hard at work today (of course, since it is Sunday I will be taking a break this afternoon for Sunday with Angela Shelton), I will leave you this picture...........

My Grandma was scared that we would get swine flu on the plane and bring it with us to her house, so the only way she would agree for us to come is if we promised to wear face masks the whole time we were on the plane.  Here we are!

And don't think that I didn't see you rude teenagers turning around, pointing, laughing and taking pictures with your cell phone.  I am sure that our picture has already traveled far and wide.....yes, we are those people..... wearing masks on the plane.  That is us.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

-How to Scare Your Husband

Mrs.4444 was having a give-a-way for a gift certificate to Amon Maternity.  They sell these really interesting Maternity Bands and  BodyShapers.  I won!!!  Vanessa from Anon emailed me with my shopping code and was very helpful.   I'm not pregnant, so I ordered two Bodyshapers, and I was excited because I have been thinking about getting something to help smooth out my stomach (those stretch marks stay forever!) The next day I left for Arizona, completely forgetting to tell Thomas about my win.  I figured that it would take a while for my Bodyshapers to arrive and I would be back in Florida before they did.

I had been in Arizona for two days when Thomas called me......

Thomas-"Do you have something to tell me?"

Me-"No, I just talked to you a couple of hours ago, nothing exciting has happened since then"

Thomas-"Are you sure, because I got a call from J at the office to let me know that we had some mail and to tell me congratulations"

At that moment, I knew exactly what piece of mail had arrived.  Apparently the folks at Amon are helpful and fast!

Thomas-"I am holding a box with your name on it and the words Amon Maternity....."

The moral of this story is.....if you order something from a maternity company and go on vacation 2,000 miles away, make sure to warn your husband it is coming!!!!