Saturday, October 3, 2015

Week In Review - Ten Things of Thankful (120)

Ten Things of Thankful

TToT 119 is missing from my list. I am sorely aware of this fact, but have to admit that last week, I was physically unable to even get up and switch on my laptop. I was so exhausted to my very core, physically and mentally, and that even though Calvin was sleeping good compared to the months before. I never thought that one person at work could paralyze an entire team; there was one day last week I spent most of my day staring at my computer screen, unable to concentrate on a single email before me. A meeting that was meant to improve things within our team made everything just so much worse, to the point where I am actually carefully looking to move on to another position, should the chance present itself. I just don't have time nor nerves to spare for games like that.

This being said, let's dive into the best of 2 weeks of Thankfuls:

1. Getting to celebrate my Dad's birthday on his actual birthday. With his birthday being close to fiscal year end, it's a time I simply cannot get off, preparing a year-end financial statement for an international corporation. This year, his birthday happened to be on the weekend, and in we dived for a day of happy chaos with tons of kids, friends, neighbors, ...

2. It's officially fall, and it has been for over a week. I celebrated the beginning of my favorite season by making a PSL for one of my colleagues and myself at the office, yum.

3. Very simple pumpkin soup, topped with goat cheese crostinis.

4. The first pumpkin bread of the season. (there seems to be a pattern..)

5. Calvin's MUCH improved sleep pattern. For the last week or two, he's only waking up once or twice a night and falls back to sleep fairly quickly again. I actually get to spend most of the night in my own bed!!!

6. Time at the playground with all three kids at perfect weather. I soaked up the fall sun in the late afternoon, watching the girls play and Calvin marvel at the different leaves and the acorns on the ground.

7. My backpain.. Does that sound weird now?  Well, I see it that way: at least I know I have a backbone that does not cave in under the pressure right now.

8. Watching or listening to Lily reading to her Daddy. Her continuous homework assignment is to read aloud for 10 - 15 minutes every day. So she's reading a German book to her Daddy chapter by chapter, and it's the sweetest thing in the world!

9. The girls taking care of each other. Violet was offered candy twice at stores during the last two weeks, and each time she made a point to mention that she had a sister at home who'd appreciate a piece of candy as well. Love that sweet little girl!

10. Calvin telling jokes. Imagine the little guy looking at you all serious, babbling away and suddenly cracking up in giggles. Cuteness extraordinaire!

I hope you all have a great weekend!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Week In Review - Ten Things Of Thankful (118)

Ten Things of Thankful

Got to cuddle my friend's new baby today!!  Can't believe how tiny he is, and even can't believe that only a year ago, Mr. Calvin was such a teeny tiny guy!

My thankfuls for this week:

1. Calvin's skin issues being almost cleared up. He got some bad eczema right after the heat rash cleared up, and nothing would help. The paediatrician prescribed a special ointment that the pharmacist mixed for him, and within less than a week, his skin is almost back to normal!

2. Lily having transitioned well into 2nd grade and is excited about all the new things ahead in the year ahead.

3. A fun work event with tons of good food, great conversations (a certain colleague now knows the importance of matching shoes and purses, and why this rule needs to be broken sometime), and a little bit of volleyball.

4. Coffee!

5. Autumn crafting with the girls.

6. Flying kites with all three kiddos.

7. Making home-made pizza for dinner with the girls, and our neighbors, who let me use their oven when my POS of an oven went on strike half-way into baking my veggie pizza.

8. Calvin really enjoying nursery school - most of the time. Unless Daddy is leaving for a couple of minutes, then he's not too much of a happy camper any more right now...

9. Violet having fun at her new dance group. She went from the small kids' group to the older girls' group. It's a pity that she won't be able to attend frequently any more, because dance class clashes with her ergotherapy appointment, but she'll attend whenever she can.

10. Calvin's improved sleep pattern. He's been waking only about twice during the last few nights, and I already feel the effects of our improved sleep schedule!

I hope you all had a wonderful week!  What are you thankful for?

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Week In Review - Ten Things Of Thankful (117)

Ten Things of Thankful

It's the end of my first week back to work at 30 hours, and I guess it'll be doable. I'm not a fan of getting up at 5:30am to catch the bus at 6:15am, but still being home around 2pm is awesome!

My Ten Thankfuls for this week:

1. A very positive performance evaluation at work, even though I've only been back since March, and only for 15 hours until this month.

2. Fair fun with my family. The kids talked us into taking them on a ride for older kids/adults. I went with Lily and our niece, Richard with Violet and our nephew, and in the middle of the ride, it started raining, as if I wasn't sick enough yet. The kids had fun, and that was worth it, I guess?!?

3. Only missing my 6:15am bus once this week.

4. VERY regular bus service into town from our place; when I missed the 6:15-bus, the 6:25-bus was almost there already.

5. Hubby still willing to listen to my rants about a certain pair of colleagues in my office.

6. Violet having a great time back in kindergarten. It's amazing how much she has developed even over the summer break.

7. The kids going back to school/kindergarten/nursery school one by one and not all at once. Helps us as parents to adjust to the early morning routine and chaos of making sure everyone's ready and snacks are packed by 7:30.  :-)

8. Our neighbors. One of them just sold me a whole box of clothes for Calvin that her son had outgrown, and another one is going to watch Lily while Richard is taking Calvin to introduction at nursery school. So thankful for our "village"!

9. An hour of me-time, aka reading in the bus to and from work.

10. A great outing into town with the kids, including lunch with my friend and her family. It's always fun to meet with all of them!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Perfect - A Six Sentence Story

Everyone wants perfect - because it is --  well perfect.

Perfect skin, perfect kids, perfect home, perfect life.

But perfect is not easy, it is hard, and mostly an unachievable target.

Striving for perfect often means stress, frustration, depression, a feeling of failure.

And while everything is supposed to be perfect, reality is far, far from it.

Because we too often forget, that the really beauty in life is the imperfect.

This piece was written as part of The Six Sentence Stories, hosted by the wonderful Ivy at Uncharted.

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Saturday, September 5, 2015

Week In Review - Ten Things Of Thankful (116)

Ten Things of Thankful

This week, it is difficult to be thankful. Not because I had too little sleep; with the temperatures going down, Calvin's sleep schedule has actually improved. It is not because of a friend moving away or the kids acting out beyond belief. It's because of a much greater human tragedy. It's been all over the internet, seen by millions and shared by many. On Thursday night, I finally mustered the courage to click on an article describing the tragedy of the Kurdi family from Kobane in Syria. Fleeing from the IS terrorizing the area, they made it to Turkey. From there, the family entered a small rubber boat that was to bring them to the Greek island of Kos, to Europe, to safety. Only a few minutes into the journey, the boat capsizes, the person who is supposed to bring them to Greece swims back to the coast and leaves the families to their own devices. The two sons of the Kurdis drowned; their mother drowned as well. Shortly after the tragedy at sea, little Aylan's body is washed up at the Turkish coast, and a picture of his poor little drowned body goes around the world, as symbol of so many men, women, and children dying on their quest for something that should be a basic human right and a given for all people: peace and safety. A little boy, laying face-down on the beach, scooped up in the arms of a Turkish policeman. On a desperate journey to provide all that to his family, Abdullah Kurdi lost everything. Three innocents lost their lives, among with many more that day, and on many days before and after that.

In honor of Aylan, his brother, mother, and all the other people who have lost their lives at sea, died of hunger, thirst, and exposure on their way to safety, I am thankful for:

1. Being able to hold our boy. Thursday night, I slept with Calvin, I simply needed to feel his warmth, this breath, hear his little mutters in his sleep to sooth me.

2. Being able to hold and hug the girls, listen to their laughter, their arguing, their running around the house, no matter how often we tell them to slow down.

3. Safety for our entire family to sleep peaceful at night.

4. A good education for all of our kids that fits their abilities and interests.

5. Enough food to eat every single day. And then some.

6. Shelter from rain, cold, and heat, and a very comfortable one at that.

7. Living in a stable democracy, with a strong economy.

8. Having everything we need and more, and even most of the things we want.

9. Being in a position to travel for fun, not to be forced to leave our home to seek refuge.

10. My husband, our children, our parents, our friends, all being safe and sound.

Right now, more so than usual, it is important to be thankful for the little things in life, which, however, are the very essence and base for our happiness.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Content - A Six Sentence Story

Sometimes, I lay awake, contemplating my life's contents.

Sometimes, I'm worried, sometimes I'm angry, sometimes I'm happy, and sometimes I'm simply content.

Sometimes, when all things fall into place, when we had a simple, quiet day, without much hurry or excitement, when the little things become the big picture.

On these days, I only truly see the content of my life.

It is not about celebrating big victories or trying to survive the big defeats.

It is the small things that bring on the peace of content.

This post is part of the Six Sentence Stories; thank you so much, Ivy, for being a genius!!

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