Tuesday, December 28, 2010

T?M

Over the last few months I've been slowly de-emphasizing our old family moniker, t5m. I've taken down the big "T5M" letters in our mudroom; only the "M" survived. Tonight I changed the name of this blog (though I haven't monkied with the web address - yet).

Our very first family website was birthed in 2004. It was "the4moores.com". Simple and perfect - it rhymed and everything. I worked tirelessly on that little website. Back then, I remember thinking that blogger was sooo complicated. Creating a website from scratch was much easier. :-) However, after a friend showed me how to upload a picture on blogger, I was done. Updating a "pre-fab" blog was about 1000 times easier than updating and re-publishing my little hand-made website.

Not long after I established "the4moores.com", I became unexpectedly pregnant. Thus "The 5 Moores" was born. It was definitely a less fabulous name and since it no longer rhymed, I eventually shortened it down to just "t5m" - which became our family logo. The kids recognized "t5m" everywhere from the entryway of our home to our family beach bag.

For a short while, "t5m" even became my identity - at least in blogosphere. I didn't bother writing under my name, everything was "t5m". It was almost like I was taking a firm stance against anyone coming in or leaving our family unit.

But as the Bible says, "His ways are higher than our ways" - and His plans are better than ours. Perhaps "t5m" was a season, just like "the 4 moores" was a season. I'm not sure how many moores we'll end up with, but one thing I do know is that there is definitely "moore to love".

The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. - Galatians 5:6

Monday, December 27, 2010

Basketball

I can't even tell you how many basketball "appointments" are on our family calendar. I guess the best way to characterize our basketball agenda is that there are far more appointments, than time to attend them all.

Avery plays in 2 leagues, plus a special holiday team which is playing in 2 tournaments this week. Amelle has her rec team committments, and Dirt's league should be starting up in January.

Then there is the Casey-side - where Joelle is playing on her school team and her rec team, and Mina is playing on the rec travel team.



So..sometimes we play



..and sometimes we watch




it's all good.




Or family rolls strong during basketball season and it's a little slice of awesomeness.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Simplicity - #fail

Christmas was great, it was. Truly.



But I couldn't shake the feeling of failure inside.



Last year we had taken the first tiny step towards reprogramming our kids for a more prudent Christmas - one that de-emphasizes materialism and emphasizes Jesus. It was a step in the right direction and it felt good.



This year, we were doing pretty good, but then at the last second, I got nervous and bought more stuff. Stuff no one needs. Stuff that was paid for by credit card because we were over our cash budget. Stuff that brought temporary joy to the kids as they opened gifts on Christmas morning, but now sits - still in boxes on the living room floor - mocking me.

As I am typing this, Amaya is throwing a fit because she's "bored" - she just said, "this is the worst day ever". The living room where she made this statement looks like Toys R Us.


Have I forgotten everything God has been teaching me over the last year? Materialism is a sin - and not only am I undisciplined about combating my own materialistic tendencies, I am teaching my kids to love stuff too.

When are we going to give Jesus center stage on His birthday?

Will we ever learn?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well. 1 John 3:2
Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Blah

I'm sick



and Christmas is in 4 days



I can't sleep, my throat is on fire and I'm grumpy



This isn't a good time for grumpy



Headed to the doctor's now. Praying for quick healing.

(Oh, yeah...photos have nothing to do with me being sick - they were taken on Thanksgiving weekend and never posted. I'm a dork, I know.)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Free To Be Me

On Wednesday I checked the mail and was blessed to have received a gazillion Christmas cards. A gazillion reminders that other people have it together enough to send cards and I dont. A gazillion reminders that cards don't have to be perfect. A gazillion reminders that I am a total perfectionist freak.

After I opened and hung all gazillion cards I quickly gathered the kids and announced that I would be taking photos for our Christmas card! (Yes, Christmas is still happening next week). In my mind, I quickly plotted to take perfect photographs of the kids being "themselves". I wasn't going to go fancy, but I would design my own cards from scratch (cough), and then order them, then address them, then send them out to all my favorite peeps - to prove that in fact, I have it together just like they do.

Then reality happened and my eldest child showed up like this for his "be yourself" photo:





Amelle rocked it. She was all in.



..and Amaya went with the double mis-matched stripe look and refused to let me touch her. (This photo looks even worse in color)



Yeah...so no Christmas cards this year.

Game ON!

Let the games begin!



I'm giddy over basketball season. I seriously LOVE watching the kids play. The schedule can get a bit hairy at times with 2 kids playing in three different leagues - but it's so worth it!




This year we get to watch Amelle play too. She's on the 4th, 5th, and 6th grade rec team. She's getting the hang of it - although she doesn't like the fact that there are people watching. She's so super-cute out there huffing and puffing and guarding and passing.



...and then there's Avery. He's playing in the 5th & 6th grade rec league and on his school team - which we're thrilled about.



..and this year, he brought out the big guns.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Gift Tag Time!

It's gift tag time! Oh, but it's so difficult to choose which designs we like best. Can you, will you, pretty please...help us choose? Leave a comment with your 2 favorite designs. Hurry, cause we need to decide ASAP!


A) B)


C)


D)

These will soon be available for purchase here: http://www.lobstersintherough.org/

Sunday, December 05, 2010

I Love Mondays

I am done working on Mondays. Seriously. Done. I am home with Maya on Mondays now and it's good. Last Monday was our first day together. Overall it was good - but there was a "breaking period" that had to happen...which resulted in her whining/crying for the first 2 hours of the day.
What I have come to realize is that I've been remiss on enforcing some of the basic parenting principles because..well..parenting is a lot of work and frankly, I already have a full time job. I'm embarrassed to say that, but sadly it's true. I have let a lot of things slip past because dealing with them takes more time and energy than I have. The result is ugly; Maya is a good girl gone wild. [I bite my finger here].
Now that we're going to be spending more time together, she's got to learn some of the rules. Last Monday we started with rule #1: I'm in charge.
She didn't really like that rule, thus the 2 hours of crying. Once we got that out of the way, things went swellingly well.
We played pictionary because she wanted to and there was really nothing else to do. This was awesome. Except that I had trouble guessing some of her pictures.
This was clearly a birthday cake...but she lied and told me that it was "a cake with a lot of candles that was not for someone's birthday....on a fancy plate".

She's a little cheater. The above was definitely "fishing". But she denied it. I guessed "Striper", "Ocean", "Daddy", "Fishing"...she glibly told me no to all of my guesses. Then my time ran out and she told me that it was actually "A man fishing in the sea on a sunny day".
Whatevs.

Then we decided we'd bake a huge chocolate chip cookie...

...and we licked the batter off of the bowl and our fingers. And no one could tell us not to. We just did it. Crazy, huh?
I have entered the world of stay-at-home mommas, albeit one day per week. But I like this strange and unfamiliar place. There is time there and it is good. I can't wait to revisit this world tomorrow and hang out with my girl some more.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Amaya Art

Yeah, that's me with the strapless bra and 3 babies in my belly.

This is me getting a c-section.
The doctors and medical staff are seemingly grumpy.

Here are my 3 lil dumplins.
(Avery is the one in the middle w/ the afro)
And here we all are...sure glad to be back to my old self again...that strapless bra was killing me. Wait a sec...there are 4 kids...
hmmm...

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Ariel

So we're at Dirt's mom's house and I'm messing around on her computer


I uploaded some pictures of the kids on here...when I noticed...


That there were a gazillion pictures of Ariel on here.



Seriously a gazillion.



and a bazillion of those gazillion were self-portraits. And that made me smile. I suppose if I were as gorgeous as Ariel I'd take a bazillion pictures of myself too.

Love you, girl! ;-)

Thankful

I am thankful to stumble across people like Katie Davis. I don't know Katie, I only know of her. Here are the things I know about her:
  • She's a single white female
  • She's young - maybe like 22 (ish)
  • She moved to Uganda 2 (ish) years ago
  • She has adopted 14 little girls (pictured below)
  • She began a ministry called Amazima (blog button on the side of my blog --->). This ministry feeds & educates children in Uganda and teaches them about Jesus.
  • She loves Jesus with a love so fierce that it blows me away
  • When her dad went to visit her last year, he wanted to buy them a toilet seat for their house and she declined, stating that the money could be better spent of feeding children.
  • Jesus' work in her life is so incredibly evident. She has completely surrendered to Him in a way that most of us refuse to do. This girl LIVES her faith while many of us are just practicing.

If you haven't read Katie's blog, you're missing an opportunity to see Jesus at work. Her journey is amazing. Follow her here: http://kissesfromkatie.blogspot.com/ (bring tissues).

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Her Own Drum

This girl


She beats to her own drum


and it's the kind of drum that plays


funky music


ya dig?

Friday, November 19, 2010

Makin' Moves

This isn’t really my story to tell, but I’m going to tell it anyway. 'Cause that's just how I roll.

I host a bible study once per week where a group of chicks from church get together, open our bibles, our hearts, and pray together. Good times.

Two of the chicks in our group are pregnant and one of them told us at her 20th week that she was diagnosed with placenta previa. This is a real bummer because apparently when you have this, your placenta blocks the “hole” (highly technical term) where the baby is suppose to come out. This means that the mom has physical restrictions, she can have bleeding, 3rd trimester bed rest, pre-term delivery and most likely a c-section.

Apparently if the placenta is only partially blocking the “hole” – then there is a chance that it will move over as everything grows "in there" (another highly technical term) and the baby might be able to squeeze by. But unfortunately, our friend’s placenta was sitting right over the hole, “like a big balloon on a donut” and there was “no chance” that it would move.

But we serve a God who defies statistics, human logic, and doctor’s warnings and we had a wild idea to pray for Him to move that placenta anyway. Our friend tried to warn us that there was no chance…until I asked her squarely if she was telling us that she didn’t think that God could move it if he wanted to. She said, “of course he can…but…” and at that point, there was no talking to me. I was rallying the troops – “when is your next ultrasound?” “28 weeks”. “That gives us 8 weeks to pray and I’m certain that if God can create the entire world in 6 days, He can move a placenta in 8 weeks”.

So we prayed. Every week. We prayed with faith and with power. We were even so bold to ask God to bring Glory to Himself as He answered our prayer so that the people doing the ultrasound and the doctors would all know that He is a Mighty God!

Today was the ultra-sound. I suppose you’re expecting me to tell you that the placenta moved…otherwise why would this story be so great, right? Right. It did move. But even more miraculous was the way in which he answered our prayers. Today, was her 28-week ultrasound, and I received this text:

So she started the ultrasound and stopped and asked, “Do you by any chance have a church that’s been praying for you?” I said, “Yes, I have people praying faithfully, why?” She said, “not only did the placenta move, but it’s far enough that you don’t need a c-section!!!” I said, “the doctors said that wouldn’t happen”…and she said, “if you have people praying then you know there’s only One Person that could’ve done this!”

Tears rolling. Our God is mighty and awesome!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I'm Here Today:

'cause writing on someone elses' blog is sometimes more fun than writing on your own.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Getting Back to Basics

One of the things the Lord has been impressing upon my heart lately is the responsibility I have as a mom to my three little munchkins.



I love them so much. What an awesome responsibility it is to train up little human beings. I feel all too often that I am not doing a great job with this responsibility - but the kids, somehow are surviving and indeed thriving even with my inadequate parenting skills. They're great kids and I'm truly proud of the people they are shaping up to be.

My life is going through a metamorphasis....things that were once important (career, finances, material things), are losing their flavor and God is giving me a desire for the things that are important to Him (His glory, the family He has given me, and TIME to enjoy both of these things).

I look forward to spending more time with Him and with them.
I think I'm going to like my new life.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Missing something else from Africa...

..being with these girls..



The A-Team.


A group of 7 chicks from all over the world - our connection to one another was like "six degrees of separation".
(note: Tam is standing in for Megs in the above photo)


And even though many of us hadn't met each other before, our week together in Africa has bonded us forever.
We laughed together (a lot), we cried together, and we experienced the joy and heartache that is Africa together.

..and then there are these guys. Our Ethiopian friends and honorary members of the A Team. Our translators, protectors, guides, brothers-in-Christ, and friends. ...and even though they talked about us in Amharic and then laughed at us - we still love them forever.

Plus, we secretly laughed at them wearing our "girls cut" A Team shirts - so I believe that makes us even.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Birthday Girl

We celebrated Maya's 5th birthday on Saturday.


The problem is that I didn't think to get the invites out until last Monday. ...which meant that I needed to come up with a snazzy little invite. These little numbers took an embarrassing amount of time, effort, and money to create.


But on Saturday, it was all worth it!

Maya and Will definitely had the competitive edge in terms of the donut-on-a-string contest. Maya's been sucking down donuts on a string since she was two. In fact, I'm pretty sure she thinks this is the "normal" way to eat them.



Then there was capture the flag - we had to run off some of that powered sugar!



And finally, she opened up her gifts. She opened this card from a certain Grandma and exclaimed, "I got a dollar!"

Turning five is sweet.

Happy Birthday Baby Girl!
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