3 Boys 2 Girls

Why it is important to have a morning routine

By August 10, 2016 General

SAN MARINO

A morning routine is very important to a successful day. I always want to get up early and get a few things done for the day, but it seems when I wake up my brain just isn’t working right.  I can’t seem to remember exactly what I wanted to get done. So I started a morning routine.  Every morning, I get up and start going down my list. I actually wrote it down so that I didn’t even have to try to remember.  I like to get up early before the kids to get this done, and we are an early household, so that usually means about 5:30 I am getting up.  It is important to me to get some time alone in the morning before the craziness of the day begins with the kids.

So here is the routine.

Start Coffee

I actually just started drinking coffee.  I went about 29 years without one cup.  I didn’t like the bitter taste, but I just kept trying it and found that I liked it with creamer, so I started off easy with creamer.  First I used a lot, but then slowly began to taper off and used less and less.  One day I was at the office and we were out of creamer, so I just tried it with sugar.  It turned out I like it!  So I started drinking it was just sugar.  When we were camping I even drank it just straight.  I am working on it!

If coffee isn’t your thing, then set the water on for tea.  Having that little pick-me-up in the morning is great!

Unload the dishwasher

While the coffee is brewing I start on the dishwasher.  I try to load everything throughout the day and then start it before I go to bed.  Sometimes it isn’t completely full, but I still run it so that I can have a clean kitchen the next morning.  If you do not have a dishwasher (Bless your heart), then if you have dishes you washed the night before drying, the just put them away.

Then I load any dishes left in the sink so I can start my day with a clean kitchen. (Full disclosure, this doesn’t happen all the time).

By the time I am done with the dishes, the coffee is usually done so I pour myself a nice steaming cup (with sugar).

Laundry

I take my nice piping hot coffee and bring it into the laundry room.  I usually start a load in the dryer the night before, so I fold that load.  Now, my family is growing and sometimes I need to do laundry twice a day, or if I have bedding or towels that need to be done. I start another load right away and keep going until I don’t have any loads left to wash. (It barely happens that I am completely caught up on laundry, but here’s to hoping).

I used to just take the load out of the washer and throw it into the basket.  It would then build up and we were living out of baskets with wrinkly clothes.  That had to stop.  So I made it a goal last year to never take a load out of the dryer without folding it.  It has been so much better!  I just fold the clothes right on the dryer and when it is full the kids bring their piles up to their rooms (putting them in their dressers is another story, but we are working on it).

It is nice know I have clean laundry all the time and we don’t have to dig through a huge pile of dirty clothes to find something.

This habit has come in handy especially with sports.  Right after the game I wash the jerseys, even if the next game isn’t for a week.  If I don’t, it seems to creep up on me and then I am frantically searching through the kids’ rooms trying to find a dirty jersey.  Sometimes I can’t find it until right before we leave and have to send them in a dirty, wrinkly, smelly jersey…not fun.

Devotion

After I have my morning routine complete I sit down with a fresh cup of coffee and spend a little time with God.  I have a couple different devotions I have done and I am always looking for more, so if you have a good one, let me know!  It is so important to get my mind right and focus on what is important.  I have found that when I start my day with God, my grace cup gets completely full.  On days where I wake up late or kids get up early and I don’t get that time in, I feel on edge.  Everything seems to rub me the wrong way and my temper is just sitting of the edge, just waiting for someone to come along and push it over and then I lose it.

Here are a few devotions I have done and liked.

Right now I am doing Thirty-one prayers for my Husband and Wife after God. I really like the focus it gives me on my marriage.  My husband and I just celebrated our 11 year anniversary and it feels like we keep growing closer together and closer to God when we focus on the meaning and purpose of marriage. There are also options for men too!  And they are on sale right now so get them quick!

Check it out for yourself here.

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Another devotion that I LOVE is Jesus Calling. This is such a great devotion.  Man or woman, young or old, married with children or single, this devotion can speak to you.  It is just perfectly written (and you can get it at Walmart!).  It is a great way to start the day.

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The last one that I am working through that I have enjoyed was The Circle Maker.  I feel like I had a strong prayer-life, but I was wrong.  This goes into how to pray, what to pray for, and when to pray.  It talks about setting goals and how to pray to reach them.  I really love it!

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You may want to tailor this to fit your life, but I encourage you to start a routine.  It will help you become more productive and start your day off with purpose and direction.  Plus, living in a clean house just makes everyone feel better! If you have any thing you think should be added, be sure to let me know!

Good luck!

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What Lies Between Us

By August 5, 2016 General

***WARNING! This review may or may not contain spoilers.  If you wish to read a book with fresh eyes and no bias, do not read any information on the internet about said book, including this review.

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I recently finished the book What Lies Between Us by Nayomi Munaweera.  Nayomi Munaweera was born in Sri Lanka and grew up in Nigeria.  She eventually came to the US when she was a teenager.  She is also the author of Island of a Thousand Mirrors, which won the 2013 Commonwealth Book Prize for the Asian Region.

I was recommended this book by one of those book lists that you get form Pinterest.  I am always looking for a novel to read in between all the of the series books I read.  It is nice to get a little break form the same characters and same writing style of my “go-to” authors.

So I checked this book out of the library and read the first couple pages.  I was immediately put on edge.  In the prologue it told a story about a mother bear who heard her cub crying out as they were caged up and having their bile stolen from them for its medicinal purposes.  She escaped her cage not to maul the humans, but to run to her child, strangle it, and then bash her head until she died.  It explained that it is all we need to know about a relationship between a mother and her child.  As a mom of 5, it was hard for me to read this.  It gave me that sick feeling in my stomach you get when you are disgusted from the inside out. But someone on Pinterest really liked it…enough to recommend it to everyone else as a “must-read”.  So I pushed on.

Then in the first chapter you realize that she is telling this story from her prison cell.  I kept thinking….”no, she couldn’t. What situation would be bad enough that you would kill your own child?” So I was curious to find out if she actually did what the prologue implied.

The book starts with the birth of the narrator in Sri Lanka, which I knew nothing about until the tsunami a couple years back. So I was interested in the way of life, how different it was than in America (which is what most non-Americans call the US….which I think is funny.  The fact that people still think of the US as some magical place where opportunity is just around the corner, all your dreams come true, and the beer flows like wine…a little Dumb and Dumber quote there lol.  But the truth is, for most of the other nations, this is still probably true).

The story then goes on to describe the way of life in Sri Lanka.  The differences between America and Sri Lanka are so striking, yet it seems so familiar.  The sense of family, the troubles you go through as a child, even the dynamic of the family.  It leads readers to connect to the character, no matter what background.

But the troubles the narrator has are horrendous. They are something no little child should go through.  She appears to handle the fears and horrors until the night she lost her father who drown in the river that ran by her house.  After that incident, the community turned their backs on them.  They were talked about behind their backs, and worst of all, they were pitied.

So the narrator and her mother immigrated to America and stayed with family.  Soon the narrator found a wonderful man, got married, and had a beautiful baby girl.  It seemed she had everything she wanted, but her demons wouldn’t let her go.  She realized who was truly behind her distant horrific memories and couldn’t take it any longer, she feared for her daughter’s safety.  And yes, she did it.  She committed the unforgivable act, which lands her in her jail cell.

Although the story ended the way I didn’t want, it shed light on some major topics.  It talked about how, as mothers we compare to each other, thinking we are better or worse.  We shame those who mother differently than us.  We pity those who do not know the difference.  This book calls every mother to look at herself and evaluate her own demons.  It made me look at my life and realize that I was letting some of those demons effect my children.  I would be angry at things that have nothing to do with them, but would take it out on them.

It also shed light on a few issues that most of the world turns a blind eye to.  I believe she probably had PTSD from the years of abuse and the night her father died.  Then going to a new country and struggling to fit in.  Then she has a baby which throws her hormones off.  The way she describes her feelings, and the way her mother treated her when she was little seems like postpartum depression.  Another buzz word that seems to be looked down upon.  But without those issues being dealt with, look what it led to.

This is a fiction novel, but very well could be someone’s true story somewhere.  Maybe a different time, or details slightly changed.  But this could be any mother out there struggling.  So we must drop the judging and comparing.  We need to start lifting each other up.  As mothers we all struggle, and we all fail (I know I have plenty of times!). But the last thing we need is guilt piled on the stress.  So today, go find another mother, one that you don’t know, and give them a compliment….anything, just some kind word in her day of craziness.  You will make her day!

Until next time, happy reading!

Want to check the book out for yourself?  Get it HERE!

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30 Things To Do Before School Starts This Fall

By August 3, 2016 General

Summer days are winding down and school will start in 3 weeks!  I can’t believe it will soon be football season!  Fall is one of my favorite times of year.  The weather turns crisp at night, perfect for bonfires and sleeping with the windows open.

But, after a full summer of being home with my 5 kids, I am a little sad to send them back to school.  We made a list of 100 things to do this summer, and we have only gotten through half of them.  So, with the last three weeks of summer racing by, here is a list of 30 things we can do before school starts!

30 things to do

  • Go fishing
  • Have Ice Cream for Supper
  • Teach the kids a new card game
  • Visit the zoo
  • Watch the Olympics
  • Make your own pizza party
  • Tour a local factory or fire station
  • Make cookies/muffins for neighbors
  • Run through the sprinkler
  • Make homemade popsicles
  • Camp out in the back yard
  • Make a pillow fort
  • Host an outdoor movie night
  • Have a watermelon seed spitting contest
  • Make a cereal or candy necklace
  • Fly a kite
  • Go to the Farmer’s Market
  • Tie-dye Tshirts
  • Host a tea party
  • Watch for shooting stars
  • Donate all old clothes/toys
  • Have a bicycle parade with friends
  • Try a new food
  • Go Bowling
  • Buy extra school supplies for a child in need
  • Kids cook dinner night
  • Have a water balloon fight
  • Have a dance party
  • Go on a nature hike
  • Swim in a lake

These options are a great place to start!  If you have any other things you wanted to do this summer and are squeezing them in before school, be sure to let me know!  I will put them on our list for next year!!  Until then, enjoy the last days of freedom with your kids before they go back to school.  These are precious times for your child, enjoy them together!

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Bloglovin

By November 30, 2015 General
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Hey everyone!  I just signed up at Bloglovin.  Make sure to sign up to follow your favorite blogs…and me!

Thanks all! Have a good day!

<a href=”http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/14577801/?claim=jkadfq62rem”>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

 

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Attitude of Gratitude

By November 30, 2015 Bible Verse, DIY, General
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Since this is the season of giving thanks, I wanted to take a moment and tell how grateful I am for the great gifts in my life.  This morning there is no school due to snow and my house is filled with kids running back and forth, shouting and jumping and screaming, and of course, fighting.  I could easily let myself be stressed out and frustrated with the noise and the crazy, but instead, today I choose to enjoy it.  I choose to love that I get to spend the day watching my children play and grow, and witness little moments that will become memories.

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I remember as a kid a snow day was so much fun!  As parents we tend to get stressed with a snow day.  What are we going to do with the kids?  How much more money is this going to cost me in daycare?  Should I just stay home from work?  That stress can transfer to the kids.  They can sense when you are not happy with a situation.  Instead of being stressed, choose excitement.  Remember what it was like to wake up in the morning and see your school listed on the bottom of the TV saying they were closed.  Your children will feed off that buzz!

I am also grateful for my family.  I have a great “herd” that I call my own.  We are crazy and happy and weird all at once.  We like to get together and eat, play games, and repeat old movie lines.  I won the in-law jackpot and really feel they are true family.  Not just people I have to put up with during the holidays. Whenever I need someone, I know I can call on any one of them.  There are many people out there without family, and I am so thankful that I have the best one.

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I also am thankful for the opportunities God has given my family.  We were given the opportunity to own our own business.  This has been something that has been a dream since we were in high school.  He finally made that dream come true last year.  I also am grateful for the little things God has given us along the way.  When we feel like we are in a hole either financially or spiritually, he always seems to send us a little something so that it works out.

So with the kiddos out of school, this afternoon we are going to try to make use of our time and get a little crafting done.  I am going to try to do salt dough ornaments.  Here are a few links from pinterest to check out if you want to do them too!

Salt-Dough-Ornaments DIY-Salt-Dough-Ornaments-Living-YOUR-Creative-5 salt dough

The last thing I will leave you with is the verse of the week.  In the spirit of gratitude I will share with you Colossians 3:17

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

This verse speaks to me whenever I am trying to justify something I am doing.  If I can’t do or say something that will glorify God, then maybe it is best to just not do or say that.  But in everything else, do it to glorify God.  If you are losing weight, do it to better praise him.  If you are working overtime at your job, do it in his name and he will bless you.  Even if you are just doing the dishes, do it to glorify God because it is easier to worship in a clean home.  God blesses those who do everything in his name, even the mundane.

And in everything, give thanks to God.  That is hard I know, but God has a plan for your life.  You may really want something and be told no from God, but He has his reasons that are not able to comprehend. Soon all things will be revealed.  Until then, thank God for everything.  The “yes’s” and the “no’s”, the ups and the downs, and the everything in between.

This week I challenge you to write down 10 things that you have been struggling with.  Things that you feel are “down’s”or “no’s”.  Go through each one and pray a prayer of thanks for each thing.  Once you start to change the way you view your blessings, great things will happen!  Good luck!

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My proudest moment

By November 24, 2015 General
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It’s Day 5 of the 30 Day Blog Challenged – My proudest moment

There have been quite a few proud moments along the way that come to mind.  I have been proud of myself, proud of my children, and proud of my husband.  I can’t just pick ONE moment.

I would have to say the moment I am most proud of myself for, is graduating Palmer College of Chiropractic.  I started school with a 4 month old little boy, and finished with a 4 yr old, a 2 yr old, and a newborn.  It was incredibly tough to go through school with children, AND a husband who was also going through school.  It was a hard time in our lives, but we made it!

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I am also very proud of my husband for making it through Palmer as well.  He worked very hard and overcame a lot of self doubt! He got better grades than I did! (It helps when you have a built in tutor :) ). He is now practicing full time and he is VERY good at what he does.  He has a great heart for this profession and is helping a lot of people!

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I am also extremely proud of my kids!  They work hard to accomplish goals that they set and I am so proud of them for it.  My son wanted to try wrestling.  I was a little hesitant since I have no clue about wrestling, but we gave it a try.  He was in kindergarten when we started.  He was a big kid and he was the youngest in his age range.  So he was going up against kids that were much older than he was and who had been in wrestling for a long time.

In wrestling, you are all alone on that mat.  When you make a mistake, there is only you who can fix it.  There is no team to bail you out.  My Ben stuck with the sport for the season, even though he did not win one match.  If he did not get pinned during the match, it was a good day!  I am so proud he stuck with it and kept trying, even though he knew he wouldn’t win.

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He is so darn cute in his singlet!

There are little moments that come up in every day life that make me extremely proud of my family.  Our family continues to strive to learn from our mistakes, and make each other proud. From sports, to dance, to school.  I will always be proud of whatever my kiddos do!

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*Photo credit: Kaitlyn Schaunaman

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maddy maddy fireman fb game

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The Best Job Ever

By November 23, 2015 General
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Today is Day 4 of the 30 Day Blog Challenge – My dream job.

First of all, I get to watch my babies grow up – that is by far the BEST job in the world.  I get to see all of their little milestones and celebrate the victories, as well as be there to comfort them when they fall.  It makes my heart so full to be able to do that.

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But let’s be real.  I don’t get paid to do that.  And in this life, we all know we need to make income to survive.  A little over two months back, I started in a network marketing company that I really love!  I am getting my health back and becoming the mother that I want to be as well as helping other people reach their health and wealth goals.  This is like getting paid to be home with my kiddos!

But for the purposes of this post, let’s say I have to have a traditional “job”.  I would say I would want to be a chiropractor!  LOL!  Ok, I am a chiropractor.  But it truly is a dream job.  When I am practicing, I get to change the lives of people who are hurting.  I get to help their bodies heal so they can be the best them that they can be!

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I also love teaching!  And when you are a new graduate coming out of chiropractic school, most of us didn’t have it all figured out.  My husband and I have a dream to create a teaching clinic where the quality of care is sought after and students graduating from school have a chance to work on their technique as well as learn how to run a practice.  This dream job will happen some day!  I just have to keep working towards my goals!

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My Favorite Quote

By November 20, 2015 General
Horsethief Lake. Black Hills, South Dakota

Today I am doing Day 3 of the 30 Day Blog Challenge. My favorite quote.

I really don’t have one single favorite quote.  I come across great quotes all the time that speak to me at that specific moment. But, I would have to say that I have a few that I really think have shaped me. The first one has been repeated and reposted but I believe the original quote goes to Igor Sikorsky:

“According to the law of aerodynamics, the bumblebee is unable to fly.  The size and shape of its body in relation to the total wingspan makes flight impossible.  But the bumblebee, ignorant of these profound scientific truths, goes ahead and flies anyway; and even manages to make a little honey every day.”

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I love this quote.  I really try to focus on the fact that even though things have been “proven” impossible, there is always a change of not only succeeding, but making a little “honey” along the way.  So no matter how many times I fail at something, nothing is impossible.  One day, I will succeed!

The next quote really speaks to me whenever I go through a struggle or feel like nothing is going right. I am unable to find the original author of the quote, so if you know, please let me know and I will update this!

“An arrow can only be shot by being pulled backwards.  So when you feel that life is dragging you back and pulling you down, you are about to be launched into something great.  So hang on, and keep aiming.”

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No matter what struggles you have going on in your life, keep your focus.  I feel like it is so easy to get lost in the drama and struggles of everyday life.  Remember that you are about to be shot forward.  Keep aiming.  This is so, so important.  If you are focusing on your struggle and grief, that is where you are aiming.  When the time finally comes to be shot forward, you will plunge further into your struggle.  Keep your head up.  Focus on the ultimate goal, whatever that is for you.  When the time comes to be shot forward, you will be thrust toward your goal at a rate so fast, you wont be able to stop it!

The final quote I will leave you with is one that I have recently come across. It is by Zig Zigler:

“You don’t have to be great to start.  You have just have to start to be great.”

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This speaks to me right now.  When I found it, it was like a bullet straight to my heart. I am starting my weight loss journey, and my network marketing business, and we are still fresh with our chiropractic office, and starting this blog.  I have so many new beginnings right now it is hard to keep the confidence that I will succeed. But this quote reminds me, I can only be great if I allow myself to start.  I know there will be little bumps along the way, but it is only a failure if I quit.

I am sure there are others out there that will inspire me, but I know God will put them in front of me when I need them the most.  If you have some that inspire you, please feel free to share.  I love a good quote!  God Bless!

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30 Blog Challenge – Day 2

By November 19, 2015 General
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Day 2 – 20 facts about me!

 

20 Facts?!  I’m not sure I can come up with that many!  Ok, here goes…

1. I have two cats and one dog

2. I love to read actual books – not on a device, and if I walk into a book store, I come out with at least 5 new books…probably more once my kids get older

3. I married my high school sweetheart

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4. I enjoy cooking and baking

5. I love living out in the country

6. But it kind of scares me a little!

7. I enjoy gardening, I’m still a beginner, but I am learning

8. Someday I want to have a big farm with goats and chickens and……other animals, not sure which ones yet

9. I love Mexican food! And Chinese food, and Italian food. Ok, I love food.

10. I love dark red wine.

11. Popcorn and a movie (and red wine) is my prefect date. Either preceded or followed by wings and beer!

12. I was born on and Air Force Base

13. I love sports and cheering on my kids or favorite teams

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14. I am a sucker for cooking shows and home improvement shows

15. If given the chance, I could literally stay in bed all day

16. Fall is my favorite season

17. Christmas is my favorite holiday

18. My favorite ingredient is garlic

19. I love to shop! (whenever those extra funds roll around)

20. And finally, I love to color

Wow! I did it!  Thanks for stopping by to learn a little more about me!

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30 Day Blog Challenge – Day 1

By November 19, 2015 General
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Since my blog is so young, I thought it would be fun to do one of those 30 day blog challenges.  I might do one or two or three days in one, or I might skip a day.  My life is crazy and I can’t always get to it every day.

So today is Day 1- The Name of my Blog

The name of my blog is named after our family.  When I decided to start this blog, it was a commitment from our whole family.  My husband and kids had to be on board with me before I started.  Any time I do something for “myself”, it takes time away from my family. So they all had to be understanding.

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Blogging is something I have wanted to do for a long time, but I have been too scared that I wasn’t “good” at writing.  But, I decided to get over it and practice, practice, practice!  I try to read as many other blogs as I can, but since time is always running low around here, I don’t get to read as much as I would like.

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Anyway, back to the name for the blog.  It comes from my children.  I have 5 kids. 3 boys and 2 girls.  My oldest boy, Bennett, is 8.  Then my two girls; Maddyx is 6, and Hadley is 4.  Then my two baby boys; Becker is 2 and Archer is 1. We stay pretty busy and I LOVE it!!

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I grew up in a big family.  I have three siblings and we are all only 6 years apart. As a kid in a big family there is always someone to play with.  When our family gets together, the space gets filled with laughter and shouts of joy and happiness.  And now all my siblings are having kids! And there is ALWAYS food involved.  Food seems to always bring our family together.  My mom has the right idea, feed them and they will come!

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My family is still very young and crazy and our home is always filled with some kind of noise.  So for now, I cherish the quiet moments.  Unless the baby is awake, then the quiet is very suspicious!

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