Monday, November 30, 2009

Just as I am.

Today was a typical Sunday morning - slept in too late, fought with a two year old to pee on the potty and put on a dress shirt and an itchy sweater, pulled out some less than favourite clothes from the dark dusty corners of my closet because my good stuff was buried in the mountains of dirty stuff, skipped breakfast (due to my resistance in using an alarm clock), just managed to avoid the puppy messing on my floor, answered 2 phone calls, gathered up a baggie of Lego and tossed it in Jonah's backpack, and flew out the door only to arrive at church, late.

I had tried to convince myself to write off church today - we had woke up too late and there wouldn't be time to get ready, I thought that maybe Jonah had a wee bit of a cough and we wouldn't want to infect the other kiddies, I didn't have any nice clothes that were clean, I wouldn't have time for breakfast and surely my tummy would be growling throughout the entire sermon, and besides all that, I don't really like sitting in church by myself for fear of looking like a church widow (Josh's shift work means Jonah and I do church on our own most Sundays it seems).

But, the Lord got us there.  He just kept prodding, pushing me out the door.  When the Lord wants us to enter in, late is never too late.  Come as your are, ragged clothes and all - He will clothe you in His love and His mercy.  Come hungry and thirsty - He will feed you with His word and fill your cup to overflowing.  Come tired and He will awaken you to the plans He has for you.  Come alone, and realize that having a church family and a Heavenly Father, means that you are never alone.

Just As I Am - You Tube Video

Just as I am, without one plea
But that thy blood was shed for me
And that thou bidd’st me come to thee
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am and waiting not
To rid my soul of one dark blot,
To thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, though tossed about
With many a conflict, many a doubt,
Fightings and fears within, without,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind;
Sight, riches, healing of the mind,
Yea, all I need, in thee to find,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, thou wilt receive,
Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
Because thy promise I believe,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am; thy love unknown
Has broken every barrier down;
Now to be thine, yea, thine alone,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Today I had one of those "I-really-can't-believe-I'm-actually-doing-this!" parenting moments.  Of all the struggles I imagined I'd have as a parent, the thought of having a picky eater never even crossed my mind.  Neither Josh, nor I, are really that picky, we're simple, but not picky.  Just avoid mushrooms and bizarre international fare, and we'll pretty much eat anything.  Anyway, Jonah, despite looking and acting in every way just like his mommy and daddy, WILL NOT eat vegetables.  Period.  Unless you gave him pureed baby food, but I'm sorry, you're going to be 3 buddy, you're just a little past the pureed stuff.  So, today, in a desperate attempt to get him to eat a couple cucumber slices, I bargained.  And I bargained.  I made the most elaborate ice cream sundae with chocolate chip cookies and chocolate sauce - and I ate it in front of him (after I ate my vegetables, of course).

My attempts were futile.  He would prefer to just get down and skip supper.  Not wanting to send him to bed hungry, I came up with a last ditch attempt to get him to eat.  A bite for bite trade.  One bite of cucumbers, for one chocolate chip (he was going to get them on his ice cream once he was done anyway, so what difference did it make if he ate them on an installment plan?)  You have to understand, I can't even get him to put a vegetable in his mouth to even try them!  So, if incentive is what he needed, incentive is what I would give him.  He quickly shoved a piece of cucumber in his mouth and swallowed it as fast as he could - he was not going to chew it, no way, no how.  Well, I guess he learned that the good Lord gave him a set of chompers for a reason.  He choked until he almost puked.  Don't worry, the Heimlich wasn't necessary, but I was out of my chair and at the ready!

I handed over a chocolate chip.

I could now see that there was no way he was going to chew the cucumbers even if he was willing to put them in his mouth.  So, I proceeded to slather them in salad dressing and chop them into tiny pieces, essentially do the chewing step for him, so he could just swallow the mouthful.  It worked beautifully!  A bite of cucumbers for a chocolate chip and before we knew it the cucumbers were gone! 

Now, by no means, would I ever consider this as an actual strategy for getting picky eaters to eat, 1) because it's horribly pathetic, and 2) because I know I've just set myself up for problems.  But, as unconvential as it was, it was a small victory for us and it made us both quite happy!

Sometimes, we don't even want to bother trying something in life that requires stepping out of our comfort zones because it's easier to just skip the "ice cream sundae".  But, sometimes, just a little taste of what's to come can be all the encouragement we need.  And so worth it in the end!

He practically licked his sundae bowl clean!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

"It's the most, wonderful, time . . . of the year!"

My blog is the evidence that it's "that time of year", again.  No post for almost a month.  Life is starting to get hectic - must mean Christmas is on it's way.  Now don't get me wrong, I just LOVE Christmas.  I'm a "warm fuzzy" junkie and proud of it and the Christmas season does it's fair share of supplying my habit.  It's just that the busyness accompanying the joyous Christmas season can be just a little stressful at times (requiring extra doses of warm fuzzies from my son and my puppy to compensate).

So this year, I'd like to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show . . . in theory anyway.  I phrased it "I'd like to" because I know it'll never happen.  I have, however, managed to cut back on a few things this year, though, not necessarily by choice.  I've so enjoyed working with the children's choir at our former church for their Christmas presentation the last few years.  But, of couse with the move, we've had to find a new chuch closer to home.  (Side note for those of you who have been wondering - it took us a year of prayer and consideration, but, we've finally found a new chuch, Midland Alliance Church, and we are so thankful to be able to get up Sunday mornings and know where we are going.)  So this year, I will certainly miss being a part of the kids Christmas production at HiWay, but I plan on enjoying those children's smiling little faces, from the audience.  And I will sit back, relax, and enjoy the show!  You'll do great, kids!

So, I managed to take one thing off my plate this year, only to seemingly go out of my way to fill it up again - quilting projects, cookie exchanges, joining a gym, hosting Christmas (for the first time!), starting a new business venture, and of course lots of festive events!  All good things, of course!  I guess, being busy this time of year is just part and parcel (pardon the pun) of the season.  And, in it's craziness, I am reminded of just how blessed we are to have loads of family and friends that love us and accept us for who we are, and just enjoy spending time with us.  Even if we don't get to see you over the holidays, we want you to know that we love you all and are so thankful for each and every one of you!  Thank you for being a part of our lives!

Now, if only we had a jet and an airport in Penetanguishene!

Monday, October 12, 2009

A few of my favourite things . . .

For years I've been saying to myself that I need to start writing down my favourite things and my favourite memories, you know, those warm fuzzy ones, so that one day, in the event that I start to lose it in my old age, I'll have something to help me remember who I am. I know, I'm just a little strange but here are a few anyway . . .

  1. Those first big giant snowflakes that sometimes fall in October when the leaves haven't completely fallen yet, and the smell of woodstoves in the chilly air that just beckons the onset of winter.
  2. Rainbows. I still get childishly excited when I see them and wish that I could actually go to the bottom of the rainbow where it meets the ground. I know that it doesn't actually touch the ground but wouldn't it be neat if it did and you could stand in the colours?
  3. Seeing the lights of Hornepayne and the dark silouhettes of jack pines through the train window in the wee hours of the morning as it's pulling into Hornepayne. I still think I'm going to see Grampa emerge from the train car doors to help me off the train. Miss you Grampa.
  4. Christmas. Especially Christmas Eve at Auntie Dimp's and Uncle Dan's.
  5. My mom's macaroni and cheese and fighting over the crunchies on top. Sorry, folks, your recipes maybe good, but my mom's is the best.
  6. Softball/baseball and getting to be the only girl that the boys at school would let join in their games at recess because I didn't actually throw like a girl.
  7. Meeting the queen.  
  8. Capture the flag on warm summer evenings with all the neighbourhood kids. 
  9. Staying home sick from school and watching reruns of Little House and Leave It To Beaver all curled up on the couch with the softest, coziest, comforter ever. Wish we still had that ratty old comforter. 
  10. Eastview Orchestra, Concert Choir, and Youth Band. Wish I could relive those days sometimes. There's just something so thrilling about making music together!
  11. Dating my husband back when we didn't have any real responsibilities or worries like getting up early in the morning or spending too much money. Ah, to be young again when you could live on 4 hours sleep and had a disposable income.
  12. Beach Front Cottages in Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick. Google it. You should go there.
  13. Fishing with my brother, starting fires in the driveway with my brother (word to the wise, don't give your kids magnifying glasses), making elaborate ramps and raceways for his dinky cars after supper, building snowforts outside on dark winter evenings, and riding our bikes all over town.
  14. Pancakes, rice pudding, or bread pudding for supper.
  15. My Charlie Brown/ Vince Guaraldi Christmas CD. It stays in the car all year round.
  16. Getting to open up our backpacks to check out all the cool stuff mom had stuffed them with for long road trips. We had to wait at least an hour or so into the trip before we were allowed to dig in. Patience is a virtue, LOL!
  17. The costume trunk in my mom and dad's basement. I swear, it looked just like Mr. Dressup's tickle trunk!
  18. Tree forts, Kool Aid cups, Monopoly, and Guess Who.
  19. Summer road trips with the windows down and Paul Brandt blasting from the car stereo.
  20. December 4th, 2003, being sick, and a certain someone insisting that he had to come see me even though I was sick as a dog and just wanted to go to bed. Well, I was glad he came and I just loved my "feel better poem". Oh, and the ring was pretty nice too.  : )

Monday, September 28, 2009

"Can't do it."

As a first time parent, you delight excessively with every new experience, every new achievement, every new word your little person comes out with.  It's exciting and thrilling to see this little being of yours grow from a tiny helpless babe into a running, jumping, chatty little person.  Each and every day their character becomes more and more defined and I love watching my little boy become the person God has created him to be.

But today was a little different for me.

It amazes me how little ones learn to talk and speak in sentences without having to be 'taught'.  How they just come out with stuff and you think "where on earth did you hear that?" and "how do you even know what that means?".  Today was one of those days.  "Can't do it" has suddenly entered Jonah's vocabulary, and, in an attempt to practice his new found phrase, it was used A LOT today - and it broke my heart every time I heard it.  My innocent little boy is beginning learn and understand his limitations and it makes me somewhat sad.  I realize it's important to know one's limitations, but sometimes I wonder just how much that knowledge actually holds us back in life.  Imagine if we all had an "I can do anything I put my mind to" attitude instead of just settling on "I can't do it."  Would you have got that job?  Would you have lost those 20 pounds?  Would you have run a marathon?  Would you have started your own business?  Would you have saved enough for that vacation you've always dreamed of?  Would you have gone back to school to do what you always wanted to do?  Sometimes, "I can't do it," is more of an easy way out than a limitation.  It gives us a reason not to attempt something that would put us outside of our comfort zone.

I hope that tomorrow, Jonah's stubborn "No, Mommy, I do it" attitude resurfaces.  The attitude that had been driving me nuts for months now.  Maybe his determinedness is not so bad afterall.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Early mornings, again.

Well, the big day has come and gone and we are now 3 days into puppyparenthood . . . need . . . coffee . . . now . . . with a side of Red Bull please . . . Okay, its not that bad.  It's just that I'm very used to sleeping in until 8:30 or 9 o'clock so the early mornings are a bit of a shock to the body again.  It's amazing how much one manages to forget in two years.

So this morning, I awoke at 5 am to find Batman, a red corvette, a teddy bear, and a sweaty little 2 year old in my bed.  How they got in there, I'm not quite sure.  All I know is that the wimpering from the puppy didn't add to the joy of having Batman's Batarangs wedged between my 3rd and 4th vertabrae and a stinky foot pushing determinedly against my ribcage as if his little size 8 1/2 could push me out of the bed.  Last night was the first night we left his bedroom door open so he could use the potty first thing when he woke up in the morning.  Too bad he bypassed the washroom altogether and ended up in our bed, well before morning might I add.  Needless to say, his door is back to being shut again tonight.   

So, good big brother that he is, concerned for the welfare of one wimpering little pup, Jonah jumped out of bed to go console Bailey.  "Okay, Bailey? . . . Mommy, Bailey need me.  I hold Bailey."  And with that, our day began.  What adventures the future has in store for these two little guys, I don't know, but I'm so happy they are so taken with eachother.  I'm thinking this puppy thing is a definately a good thing, for all of us. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Let them be little.

To say the least, I am an axious mom.  In the mere 2 1/2 years that I've been a mom, I've struggled daily, to let the little things go.  When Jonah was a baby, he was very spitty, and I just about had a breakdown every time he spit up on his bib and spoiled the carefully selected ensemble.  (Yes, I do realize that the bibs were not just an accessory, but that they actually were meant to catch the spit.)  I'm the type that likes to have all my ducks in a row, so to speak.  Everything has to go as planned, everyone has to be safe and accounted for, and I can't say goodbye or goodnight to loved ones without saying "I love you", even if I'm mad, in the event that something horrible should happen.  Okay, so maybe I'm a bit neurotic.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of spending the last day of summer vacation with most of Josh's family.  It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day and the grass was green and lush in the backyard.  Perfect for wrestling.  Yes, wrestling.  It was a real, live, WWF smackdown right in my own backyard.  Two grown uncles/dads vs. four giggly, screaming neices and one little toddler boy who certainly held his own against the big boys.  Oh, and lets not forget to mention the cheering section that consisted of the neighbours kids from the next two houses beside us.

Pan up to the deck.  There's me.  Pacing back and forth, darting my eyes from one child to the next just waiting in anticipation for the hearty giggling to turn to crying.  Who would it be first?  I was just praying it was not going to be a neighbours kid.  My small voice was that of a tiny mouse amongst a galloping heard of wildebeests as I begged for them to settle down.  Forget it Caitlin, their ears are not tuned to your frequency.  So I sat, then I stood, then I sat down again, and got back up again.  I busied myself with wiping the patio furniture off, still praying that no one was going to end up with a black eye or a broken bone.  I'm sure the squealing and giggling could have bean heard all the way to Midland.  But it was just that - big hearty laughter, the kind that comes so deep from your belly that you just can't stop.   Here they were, five sweaty, grass stained kids, having the time of their lives with two of their most favourite people in the world.  Who was I to try to deny them of that?

The more I thought about it today, the more I realized that now that I'm a mom, its even more necessary than ever for me to just let some things go.  Besides the fact that they're all still in one piece, maybe, just maybe, Jonah and his cousins will grow up fondly remembering that sunny afternoon in the backyard with Uncle Jason and Uncle Josh.

Most of you have probably heard this song at one time or another, but it seems so fitting for today's blog, I thought I'd share it with you.  So take a listen, and try not to cry.  : ) 
You Tube Video - Let Them Be Little


I can remember when you fit in the palm of my hand
Felt so good in it, no bigger than a minute
How it amazes me, you're changing with every blink
Faster than a flower blooms they grow up all too soon

So let them be little 'cause they're only that way for a while
Give them hope, give them praise, give them love every day
Let them cry, let them giggle, let them sleep in the middle
Oh just let them be little

I've never felt so much in one little tender touch
I live for those kisses, prayers and your wishes
Now that you're teaching me things only a child can see
Every night while we're on our knees all I ask is please

Let them be little 'cause they're only that way for a while
Give them hope, give them praise, give them love every day
Let them cry, let them giggle, let them sleep in the middle
Oh just let them be little

So innocent, a precious soul
You turn around and it's time to let them go

So let them be little 'cause they're only that way for a while
Give them hope, give them praise, give them love every day
Let them cry, let them giggle, let them sleep in the middle
Oh just let them be little

Let them be little

Saturday, September 5, 2009

An ode to my new found home in Ontario's near north.

It's been almost a year since that cool November day that Josh, Jonah, and I made the 55 kilometre portage from the shores of Kempenfelt Bay to the shores of Penetanguishene, Place of the White Rolling Sands.  Sounds majestic, doesn't it?
Well, that cool, crisp morning, turned into a wet, windy afternoon, which eventually turned into a very snowy, stormy night, that resulted in a 3 day power outage.  Welcome to the neighbourhood, Gervais family!  First thing on the to-do list once the power goes back on and we unthaw: head to Canadian Tire for a snowblower and a generator.  Apparently, up here snowblowers and generators are as necessary as fridges and stoves.  Hmmm, the real estate agent never mentioned that . . .

So, we survived the winter and spring came.  Then summer came . . . for two weeks.  Then fall arrived again.  In this time, I've learned a lot about our little town of 9000, on the southeasterly tip of Georgian Bay, gateway to the 30,000 islands (I'm just curious, has someone actually counted every island?  Are there actually 30,000 even, or are there maybe 30,002 or something?).  So let me educate you on this pretty little town we now call home.

You know you're in Penetanguishene when . . .
  1. With the last name Gervais, you fit right in.  Just don't try to pronounce your last name the way the locals do or the jig is up.  They'll know you don't actually speak French.
  2. The ratio of civilians to the institutionalized is about 9 to 1.
  3. You can't spell "P-E-N-E-T-A-N-G-U-I-S-H-E-N-E" so you shorten it to "Penetang" or "The Tang" or "P-Tang".
  4. If you don't have a boat parked in your driveway and a snowmobile or two in the shed, you're not keeping up with the Joneses.
  5. You see a man taking his dog for a walk down the street while riding his riding lawnmower beside him.  (Okay, that was in Perkinsfield, but close enough.)
  6. You're taking your son for a nice evening stroll only to have him point out a rust bucket of a van filled to the ceiling with "plants" driving past you.  The Georgian Bay OPP ceized a boat load of those "plants" the next day.
  7. The beat up old Ford pickup in front of you is making a 3-point turn on a busy 80km/hr county road with a lacy ladies camisole dangling from the driver's side view mirror.
  8. There is only one, again I say, ONE, Tim Horton's, and it's a 24 hour hangout for the local riff-raff.  If you come to visit, consider the Timmies a drive-thru only.  Oh, and shall we not forget to mention how fun it is to loiter in front of the Foodland.
  9. Shorty-long-backs and track pants are very stylish up here.  Oh, and in the winter you can wear you big winter Sorels out and about running errands and you are likely to be complimented on them.
  10. We're not so redneck we keep chickens in the backyard, just a few hundred geese.
  11. Everyone is within 5 minutes walking distance from the lake, so we are blessed with taxes that might as well be waterfront taxes.
  12. You better get your shopping and errands done during your lunch hour.  Main Street shuts down at 5 o'clock.
  13. There are 5 school boards, that's right, five.  English Public, French Public, English Catholic, French Catholic, and English Protestant.
  14. Playboy Playmate, Miss January 1990, hails from Penetanguishene.
  15. Other notables include Brian Orser (figure skating champion), Russ Howard (curling champion), Chris Kontos (NHLer), not to mention Tim Mason: Lawn Bowler.
  16. At the local Superstore, the Saturday before Christmas, no one is in a rush.  People stop to chat in the aisles, and the cashier casually fills your bags while cheerfully chatting you up.  No one in the line behind you that extends into the paper goods aisle seems to mind.  This is small town life.
Pretty little Penetang, home sweet home . . .  hey, did I mention I don't have to fight the traffic on Bayfield Street anymore?  Seriously though, Penetang is a beautiful little community, and we're adjusting to small town life just fine.  I love it here and look forward to spending many years to come in this "place of the white rolling sands".


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Time keeps ticking.

Wow.  Is it really September already?  Don't worry, its a rhetorical question, you don't have to answer that.  I still love the smell of office supply stores, especially this time of year.  It gives me that little excited quiver in my tummy.  Every time I walk into Staples, I have to refrain myself from checking out the highlighters, pens, pencils, binders and whatever other cool gadgets they have in those tempting bins lining the aisles.  I lived for back-to-school shopping, and even more so, to go home, trade stuff with my brother, and get it all organized.  Binders filled and dividers labelled, pencils sharpened, Le Kit stocked up, agenda filled out as much as I could, school bag packed, and first-day-of-school outfit picked out. 

As exciting as school supplies were, like most kids, this was a bittersweet time of year for me.   I remember one particular late summer evening, sitting at the kitchen table having a drink of water out of a red plastic Tupperware tumbler, staring out the kitchen window, feeling such mixed emotions, I couldn't help myself but cry.  I loved the freedom of summer and not having a care in the world (does anyone remember what it was like to feel really, truly, bored?).  Yet, I thrived on the routine and the challenge that school and extracurriculars brought.

To me, moving into the next grade was a bigger deal than my birthday.  My birthday was in the middle of the school year, so I never really felt any older at my birthday, but, moving to the next grade made you feel so much more mature.  In my mind, it meant I was one year closer to being "grown up".  However, that also meant I had one less year to figure out who I was going to be, what I was going to do, and where I was going to go.  And, being the neurotically, indecisive, compulsive planner that I was (and still am), that fact scared me . . . a lot.  How was I going to figure it all out in time?  Forget the fact that I was ten years old, I had to have a carefully detailed plan, and time was ticking.

Fast forward 17 years.  I actually am "grown up" and wondering where on earth that time went.   And, except by the grace of God, I can't even believe how I got here.  Sure I had plans, some of which worked out, some of which didn't, and some of which God orchestrated in His own perfect way and not mine, thank goodness.  In our crazy, chaotic, lives, at least time is a constant.  It doesn't speed up, it doesn't slow down, though at times, we may feel that it does.  No matter what happens, time keeps ticking.  Our lives keep on going no matter what plans we have.  Time makes us wise, time heals us, it grows love stronger, it closes old doors and it opens new ones.

I think, since becoming a mom, I've come to terms more with the fact that I can't slow down time, and I actually look ahead to the future with excited anticipation.  Ever since Jonah was a baby, I've always said I can't wait to see him grow up.  Everyone told me not to wish away those baby days, but come on, really?  I mean sleepless nights, endless diapers, laundry, and spit up?  No thanks, I won't be wishing for those days back.  The only thing that got me through it was planning for his 1st Birthday.  No, I couldn't wait to see Jonah take his first steps, colour a picture, eat an ice cream cone, ride on Daddy's shoulders and hear him say "I love you".  I can't wait to see him off on his first day of school and see who he'll become.  Will he like sports?  Will he be fascinated with science?  Will there be an ant farm in his room and planets hanging from his ceiling?  Will he love to sing?  Will he be sweet or will he be funny?  Or maybe both?  Will I be endlessing picking up stinky socks, dumping the sand from his shoes, and finding Legos in the laundry?  Will he be a momma's boy?  I hope so.  And I can't wait to find out.  I can't wait until he bends over to hug me and I feel his doesn't-think-to-shave-before-he-comes-home-to-visit-at-Thanksgiving whiskers on my cheek and I hear him say " Love you, Mom."

So, bring on the Fall.  Bring on a new year.  I'm ready and waiting!  And, you know that red plastic Tupperware tumbler I was drinking from while wondering how the heck I was going to get here?  It's Jonah's cup now.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Times have certainly changed.

Boy, when I was seven, cautiously printing with my Primary Printer No.1 Pencil in my lock and key diary with with the carousel on the front, I never thought I'd one day be typing my thoughts on a computer, much less on the world wide web for everyone to see.  So much for the lock and key.  After being inspired by the blogs of a few friends, I have finally succumb to this phenomenon called blogging.  I have refrained from the whole blogging thing since I first heard about it because a) facebook is enough of a time sucker, and because b) who really cares about what I have to say?  But, having a husband that works long shifts and a two year old whose conversations are focused mainly on his lunch menu, his current favourite movie, and how to use the potty, I can now totally understand why people, specifically young moms like myself, turn to blogging.

So, for what its worth, these are my thoughts.  Read them or don't read them.  Doesn't matter to me.  I said that this year I wanted to stretch myself and to do something outside of my comfort zone, this would certainly be it.


Be sure to close the door behind you.

As a little girl, the words "turn out the lights" and "close the door behind you" were etched into my mind on a daily basis.  At the time, it meant just that.  Occasionally, it meant a second trip back to where I was, to do what I had forgotten to do.  This week, I've come to realize that "turn out the lights and close the door behind you" can really be an analogy for so much more.

My son has a strange obsession with closing things.  If Jonah were a girl I'd say, "well, she's just like her momma".  But, for a boy, this surprises me somewhat, considering the only real experience with little boys I've had was my little brother, and, well, lets just say he didn't share the same passion for closing things, as Jonah.  It can be rather frustrating when I'm trying to prepare supper and he's constantly shutting the pantry door on me, or, when I'm loading up the cupboard under the bathroom sink with toilet paper and he manages to shut the door 5 times before I'm done.  He barely finishes peeing before he slams the toilet seat and lid shut.  And, forget trying to load the wet laundry into the dryer when he's around, that's just too tempting.  This has all led to Jonah's newest catch phrase "not yet".  I guess I've been saying it a lot lately.

Or, perhaps I've been saying it a lot longer than I realize.  I'm not one to give up too quickly and quit something without finishing it, even if it takes me a really long time.  I guess that's why that six inches of knitting that was supposed to be a scarf has been sitting in my craft drawer since I was nine.

So, almost 10 years ago when I began a journey, a dream really, I was going to see it through to the end.  I didn't think it would take quite this long, but there were plenty of twists and turns, and ups and downs along the way - a marriage, a baby, a business, inner struggles, emotions, and failures, and moving from the city I had called home my entire life.  But, this was something I just had to see through to the end, no matter what.  Reading back through my baby book this morning, my mom refered to this characteristic as 'stubborness'.  I like to call it tenacity.

There were many detours along this journey, but thank the Lord for detours, because without them, we'd miss out on all the beautiful scenery and souvenirs, not to mention all the wonderful people we meet along the way who end up having a significant impact on your life.

This summer, I'm overjoyed (and quite relieved) to finally close a door that has been swinging in the breeze for quite some time.  I've finally finished the last of my ARCT teacher's exams and will be officially graduating in January.  I've had friends become doctors in less than the time I've been working away at this, but I'm okay with that.  I don't think it really matters how long the journey takes, as long as you reach the destination.  So be encouraged, if you are on a journey where the road seems so long you feel you won't ever 'get there', you will.  Just be sure to put on the windshield wipers when you need to and stop for a car wash every now an then.  And, most of all, try not to let your spiritual gas tank run empty, though, try as we may, we all do now and then. 

When you get out of the car at the end of your journey, be sure to turn out the head lights and close the door behind you.  And, if you are someone who has left the lights on and a door open somewhere in your life, may I remind you to go back, turn them out, and close the door behind you.  Its never too late.