Holy moly, people. My last post was August. I can't even begin to play catch up from there! So I'll will start with introducing my current self.
HI! My name is Maria. I am 30 weeks pregnant with my third baby girl, Vaeda Alyce. I have a spunky, sassy 2 year old, Afifa Karen, and a fun, artistic 5 year old, Delia Esther. We also just welcomed to our family my youngest brother, Sam, who will be 13 next month! He moved in with us the beginning of January, and we officially became his legal guardians on February 20th, after a long, hard, emotionally challenging process. I have 12 brothers and sisters (11 living), and I love them all so passionately that I can't handle seeing them hurting and not try to do something, even if it's something drastic.
I am in my 4th year now as the musical director for a youth theater called Center Stage Youth Performers, and, other than being a wife and mommy, it is the most fulfilling, joyous thing in my life :) We have 80-100 kids between age 7 and 18. We do classes on Wednesdays from September- December, then audition and cast all of the kids in January for a spring musical. My first year was Beauty and the Beast, last year was Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and 2 days ago was closing night for The Little Mermaid. Awesome, awesome, awesome. Love all the staff and kids I get to "work" with so much :) It is hardly work. I mean, really, can you even call it a job if they came to you and said, "Sorry, we can't pay you anymore" and your immediate response would be "That's ok! I'll do it for free!!" LOL Not that I don't appreciate the little bit of extra income... Really though, the staff in just incredibly inspiring and uplifting, and I have grown tremendously just through pure association!!
My insanely hot and hardworking hubby and I will be celebrating our first 7 years of Eternity in 3 weeks. He is, hands down, the greatest thing that has ever, or will ever, happen to me. I love him and I love the family that I married into! Lucky, blessed, and, very much spoiled girl right here.
Less than 2 months ago, we bought our very first home!! We moved from a 1000 sq ft apartment into a 6 bedroom, 3 bath, 2800 sq ft place that is on almost a quarter of an acre! YIPPEE!!! It was miracle after miracle to get us here, and it is magnificent. I like to think (hope, pray, cross-fingers) that it is our first and LAST home :) Of course, we'll be prepared for anything or anywhere the Lord wants to take us, but I know that He has led us here for now, and here we will stay until told otherwise :)
My best friend and little sister has been in the mission field now for just a couple weeks now, entering the MTC on Feb 27th to prepare for service in the Phoenix Arizona Mission, Spanish-speaking :D I love that girl a crazy amount, and am so so SOOOOOO proud of her. She is loving the work and has already threatened to never, ever come home :) Her sweet missionary, Cortland Dickey, is in the Philippines on a mission, due home about 6 months before her. I am really hoping he is my brother-in-law sooner rather than later after she gets home ;)
NOW. For the motivation to actually log into my blog. My brother and his wife are, at this moment, getting ready to board a plane to HAWAII for their 10-year anniversary trip! YAAAAAY!! I am so excited for them, and excited that I could be a big part of them being able to do it :) I am, for the next week, the mother of 6 children! :D Their 3 kids are ages 8 (Mark Jr), 6 (Marlayna), and 4 (James).
This is a report of DAY ONE:
I fed 4 adults and 6 children breakfast this morning :) French toast and fruit. Mmmmm.
Hubby headed to work, Sam caught his bus to schoool.
Jillayne and I put together a workable meal plan for the 8 days that I would be watching their kids, then we went grocery shopping with Afifa and Marlayna.
Had fish sticks, salad, and grapes for lunch.
Mark and Jillayne said their goodbyes and hit the road to Vegas about 1pm to catch their red-eye flight to Hawaii.
Sam got home from school and the kids all played for awhile doing various things (jumping on the tramp, PS3, Wii) then we went to the library to return/checkout books. After the library we had a snack (carrots, crackers, cheese) and then headed to Sam's soccer practice. Dropped him off and went to Home Depot to return a bath-plug that didn't work and picked up some wildflower seeds to plant in our front flower beds. We went next door to the pet store afterwards to see all of the little animals there and dream about buying a couple of parakeets :)
Picked up Sam from soccer then came home and made chicken/black bean quesadillas for dinner.
After dinner we had FHE (Family Home Evening) on making good choices. I loved one of Marlayna's comments about WHY making good choices makes us free. She said it's like a maze. If you make a bad choice, you will keep running into a wall and getting lost. But if you make GOOD choices, you will find your way out and be free :) I loved all of their little insights!! Made me want to do it every single night they are here!! LOL
Brushed teeth, said prayers and said goodnight. James came out but wouldn't respond to any questions as to why, so I picked him up and carried him back to be, which he did NOT like. At all. Said he hates me. His mom warned me of that :) Mark came out of bed for a snack and I told him no snacks after brushing his teeth.
All in all? A very successful day :) My goal is to document every single day, so brace yourself for what it might be like 6 days from now :D
And now....sleep. <3 p="">3>