Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Surprise Fortune

“Someone’s kindness will surprise and delight you.”
The fact that I have this Fortune is actually the surprise and delight…a very lovely lady brought this to me at work. I have shared with a few people at work that I do this, this thing with the Fortune Cookies. She and her boyfriend have actually checked out my blog – and she saves me Fortune Cookies, that I put in the Happiness Cup.
I did not put this one in my Happiness Cup – I just had to gush over it. It really did Surprise and Delight me – and it does every time she brings one to me! This day when she brought it to me, I knew that I might be leaving that job. I had an interview and I was feeling pretty confident that I would be offered the job, the opportunity. And she brought me this. I have been so torn…I trust her, but could not put her in a compromising situation by telling her what was going on. I really am all about living an honest life and being who I really am – but I had to keep this from her.
“Someone’s kindness will surprise and delight you.”
I told her at that very moment – “You have surprised and delighted me!” (Really – really did, and if she comments she can confirm this!) I was nearly in tears, how sweet. She knows what I do, she’s read it, she saves these for me. Even know, as simple of a thing that it may seem…it means so much! I actually have 3 others that she has brought to me that are in the Happiness Cup that I have her name on…those are from her (protecting the innocent from Vanilla Mama’s rants!).
“Someone’s kindness will surprise and delight you.”
I posted in my last Fortune that there were big changes coming…and I can happily (and sadly) confirm that this is true. I have accepted a new opportunity from a wonderful company, but I am also leaving a company that gave me a chance and wonderful people like ‘her’ and others that just make me smile when I think of them. I can honestly say that I have made life-long friends at this job and I will sincerely miss them. I hope that they all realize this…I cannot name them by name (again – innocent people should not be subjected to my ravings!) but I will personally let them all know before I leave.
Perhaps I will be that Someone whose kindness will surprise and delight them. Perhaps I will be yours!
Live, Laugh, Love ~
Vanilla Mama
There are no lucky numbers on this Fortune (PANDA EXPRESS – what is WRONG with you!?!), so your lucky numbers are someone you should reach out and let know you care. YOU know who that person is – and when you let them know, share with us how wonderful it was!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Exciting Fortune

“An exciting opportunity lies ahead of you.”
Oh man, I hope so! I really, really hope so! I have been praying for change lately and part of my prayer was, “Lord, I know that you have something planned for me. Please, lead me to it.” A few things have transpired just by listening to that inner voice that I call the Holy Spirit. I am not going to go into a lot of detail in my post today, because I don’t know anything for certain yet…I am in Wait Mode.
You know what Wait Mode is, right? It is that limbo between knowing and not knowing. Taking the test and waiting for the grade. Having your pictures taken and waiting to see if you look fat in them. Setting up a blog and hoping people read. Going into labor and having the baby…Wait Mode. That feeling in the pit of your stomach while you…just…wait…and wait…and it has only been A DAY!
I do not do Wait Mode well. Seriously, let me say that again – I do not do Wait Mode well. Despite the fact that I am a patient person, this is killing me. It’s like watching paint dry while someone is scratching on a chalk board. Especially today!
Imagine my joy when I got this Fortune today, “An exciting opportunity lies ahead of you.”
I know, I know…I cannot put a whole lot of stock into a Fortune Cookie when it comes to life decisions, but give a girl a break! Maybe God is telling me something.
Every day we are given opportunities, some possibly more exciting than others. It could be the opportunity to make a new friend, give someone support, change jobs, grow closer to your husband and children.
While I am waiting for my exciting opportunity to come through, (please, please, please God – I am not above begging…ummm…praying extra hard!) I am going to try to take my opportunity and let God’s grace work through me and give me some peace today knowing that He has this. No matter what happens, if this exciting opportunity comes to pass or not, if another exciting opportunity will come along. Besides – my Fortune Cookie told me so!
Live, Laugh, Love ~
Vanilla Mama
OOOhhhh….here is an exciting opportunity for you: 10, 15, 29, 31, 35, 44. And as always, if you win – please take the opportunity to share with your Vanilla Mama!

Friday, May 20, 2011

All about me - Mostly, Maybe

1.   People always tell me I look like
Someone they know – I have a twin out there somewhere! And her name is the same as mine – it is REALLY weird!

2.  Friends don't let friends  

Shop TV infomericals drunk!

3.  A sunny day is perfect for 
Going to the Zoo, reading a book, enjoying time with my family.

4.  My favorite accessory is 
My rings – especially my ring with all my kiddos names!

5.  If I could afford it I would  
Not work and just write and spend time with my Kiddos and wonderful hubby!

6.  The cure for boredom is 
Reading my Nook, reading blogs and spending time with my Kiddos and wonderful hubby.

7.  I am currently "in like" with  
Maxi Dresses, Fortune Cookies, Hot and Sour Soup and ALWAYS VANILLA!

Boost my Blog Friday - Playing Around


I promise I will be back to my regular posting on Monday - writing a guest post for another blog today! How exciting, I will let you know when it is up. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Chasing Moonlight...Finding Paisley...: This path

I was truly touched by this blog and the post - if you feel moved, please help bring this little boy to a family that will love him for the precious child of God that he is. Help Him....Help him, Live, Laugh, Love ~
Vanilla Mama

Chasing Moonlight...Finding Paisley...: This path: " This is a path from Dillon to his Mommy, Daddy Brother, and Sister that was strung together with Love. Generosity..."

Friday, May 13, 2011

Friendly Fortune

“A friend in the market is better than money in the purse.”
“A friend in the market is better than money in the purse.”
What does this mean? Does that mean I should buy a friend with the money that was in my purse?!Am I supposed to go out to the Friend Store?
“A friend in the market is better than money in the purse.”
I seriously don’t know what to make of this one – I have come across some bizarre Fortune Cookies in my life, but….since I am trying to stay true to the whole write what I pick out of my Happiness Cup, here it goes.
What is the Happiness Cup you ask? Boy, am I glad you asked!
I got it for a $1.00 at the market – I took the money out of my purse to buy it. Who says money can’t buy Happiness? So, every time I get my Hot and Sour on at Pei Wei or New China (YUMMY!) and get my Fortune Cookies, this is where they end up. After I write about them, they go in another small cup – don’t have a picture for that one – that way I don’t get them mixed up.
Okay, I digress….“A friend in the market is better than money in the purse.”
One thing that makes me happy is buying things for other people, no reason for it, a simple surprise, a little treat. How about Starbucks coffee? Ice Cream from the cooler? Cookie from the bakery? I may just treat you with something for some random unknown reason.
Does that count as a friend in the market? For my purposes today, yes I believe that it does!
I haven’t been shopping with a friend lately, but one of my favorite memories with T****S**** is shopping together for dresses that I wore on a cruise. It was like a scene in Pretty Woman…literally I could hear Roy Orbison singing in his slightly off-key way. She bought ballroom dresses, I bought my fancy Dinner with the Captain dresses and we had such a good time. I spent more money than I meant to, my poor little purse was empty – but guess what I had a friend in the market!
Live, Laugh, Love ~
Vanilla Mama
For the chance to get more money in your purse…your lucky numbers are: 11, 18, 22, 29, 31, 41.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Beautiful, Scary Thing!

Beautiful, Scary Thing -
Sorry, couldn't resist Scrabble like tiles!
John 3:35 - Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.”
For me today, this is a hard one. Although I am one of the first people who will say it happens in God’s time, God will provide, if God brings you to it, He will bring you through it….I am also working really hard to convince myself. If I were to list off all the things that have gone wrong lately, or are not going right, or just simply not going how “I” want them to go, I would just sound like I am whining – and honestly I don’t have enough cheese to go with all the whine!
Realistically I could spend hours going on about everything…realistically I probably have, and I probably will again. It is a waste of my energy, a waste of the precious resources that God has entrusted in me.
Trusting in those words, trusting that God always has my back, trusting that my silver needs a little purifying – is hard. Really, Really Hard! I don’t feel like I am able to do enough, trust enough. Jesus said to me, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.” Jesus said that to me – today. But, I have to believe in Him. I have to trust in Him – I have to let go. Such a beautiful, scary thing...to let go, to trust!
In short, I have to trust in the resources that God has entrusted in me. He trusted me enough to give them to me…and he gave them to you to.
I have to say that again, because I had never thought about that before – I have to TRUST in the resources that God has ENTRUSTED in me!
The big question here though is what am I hungry for? What I am thirsty for? Are they really things that God wants for me in my life? Are they really things that God has entrusted resources in me to do? I realize that it is my choice; free will is a beautiful, scary thing.
But, what would it feel like to spend eternity thirsty, spend eternity hungry? Spending all the energy and resources that I have trying to satisfy them? Whining won’t help – not even with the yummiest cheese!
I can choose to trust God, I can choose to not…I have been entrusted that choice. I can choose to be hungry, I can choose to be thirsty….or I can choose to trust in God to fill those needs.
A Beautiful, scary thing.
Live, Laugh, Love ~
Vanilla Mama

Monday, May 9, 2011

Let's Try This - Blog Hop

I keep seeing all sorts of cool Blog Hops and I think I will play along! I hope I am doing this right - I guess I will find out shortly!

Will do a regular post later tonight or tomorrow, until then...Hop, Hop, Hop!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Dreaming of Fortune

“Keep true to the dreams of your youth.”
Yes - right there in the middle of
my forehead.
Well, if I were to totally keep true to the dreams of my youth, I would be a movie star, a world famous writer, a model, and I would have my kissing spot birthmark tattooed on my forehead. As I got a little older my dreams changed, I would still like to be an actress – probably in Community Theater or voice overs, I still want to be a writer, have NO desire to be a model whatsoever and THANK Goodness I grew out of wanting my birthmark tattooed on my forehead.
One dream that I developed as I grew older that became the most important dream – being a Mom, a good Mom. Being a wife, a good wife. Nurturing, supporting, unconditional loving.
Does this dream mean that all the others are pushed to the side, for a while I thought it did. I thought that following the dream of being a good Mom or wife meant that I had to give up the other things that I wanted to do.
I stopped growing. I put everything into the biggest part of what I was trying to cultivate, wonderful children, that I let other parts of me wither away. Now that my older boys are older, I am working outside the home, my little Frosting is growing up – I have realized some parts of me that I need to nurture again. I am trying to “Keep true to the dreams of my youth.”
And while there are some of my childhood dreams, that no matter why I wanted to do it – my kissing spot birthmark tattooed on my forehead – I am glad that I stepped back and gave it more thought.
On a totally separate thought, we had our foundation repaired today and part of the process involved cutting holes in my front porch and jacking up my house 2 full inches (was not supposed to included cutting my Fios service and having to call out Verizon to fix it!). They then filled in the holes with fresh concrete – CHILDHOOD DREAM ON MY FRONT PORCH!!!! Seriously, you cannot sit there and tell me when you see FRESH CONCRETE you haven’t wanted to put a mark in it?!
Well – I DID! It is MY CONCRETE! I can mark it –
Wet cement, metal wall art!
This was SO much fun!
Did I mention, I did this in TWO places!
It's so gooey!
So – “Keep true to the dreams of your youth.” My kiddos will have to wait for their own cement to mark - I was a mean mommy!

Live, Laugh, Love ~
Vanilla Mama
Least we not forget one of my BIGGEST dreams in my youth, winning the LOTTERY!!!
Here are your lucky numbers (and remember, if you win – please remember your Vanilla Mama!)!
9, 18, 22, 29, 36, 38

Monday, May 2, 2011

Life with My Dudes - Pop, Tart and Frosting

Kiddo Post for Dudes –

Old pic - Pop, blue; Tart, brown;
Wonderful Hubby, Maroon;
Vanilla Mama (80lbs ago!) purple,
 Frosting, Stroller; FAV filling - Pink!
  One of my favorite blogs put out a challenge today to write a post about living with Dudes for kiddos. Well, I have Pop, Tart and Frosting – my three Dudes! Life with these three Dudes is never boring!
From being scared into screaming like a girl (oh, wait – I am a girl!) when Pop and Tart conspire against me to scare the ever living beejeezes out of me just the other day to getting sweaty boy hugs from all three of them – there is always something going on that makes me glad to have my Dudes.
When Pop and Tart were little, they had in their little kiddo minds that Mom would like a swimming pool….their solution – DIG, DIG, DIG! And dig they did…in my backyard, by the time I figured out what was going on I had a two feet deep hole about 3 feet across. I was livid, until they told me why – then I just laughed and explained there was a little more involved to getting a swimming pool than just digging a hole. I ended up planting a tree in that hole, because no matter how much sand and dirt I put back in the hole,  it was on a slope the rain would wash it all away. To this day when I drive by my old house, I laugh when I see that tree!
There is quite an age difference between my Pop and Tart and my little Frosting – 14 years for Pop and 10 years for Tart…it has been challenging, the blending of ages. Pop is getting ready to graduate and go to college, Tart is a freshman in high school and Frosting is just 4 and thinks he should be able to do everything his older brothers do.
Pancake Mask - HAHA!
Love the BUTTER!
We have Hot Wheels, Legos, Xboxs, computers, strong deodorant, dirty clothes on the floor that are scary to pick up, pee on the seat,  potty humor galore and I can’t imagine life any other way. We have promised to burn a shirt after family portraits to get Tart to wear it and followed through with it, gone to midnight showings of Harry Potter movies, stayed up late in the night talking about girl issues and gotten up bleary eyed the next morning for donuts before school.  We have dumped an entire box of cheerios on the floor and tried to get the dogs help clean it up. We take pictures of motorcycles, drool over old cars and make pancake Halloween masks. That’s life with my Kiddos, my dudes, My Pop, Tart and Frosting – that’s life with our Filling.
Who are the Filling? All the Buddies of the Kiddos that call me Mom, too! Dude or Dudette – they are the Filling, and no life is ever complete without Filling. As with any type of Filling there are some flavors that you like better than others…but this Filling I have been able to adjust, sometimes just by how I react to it. And while there is certainly some Filling I really wish would come around more often….I know that Pop, Tart and Frosting are not the same without their Filling.
Raising Dudes for Kiddos is certainly different than raising girls, there are not hormones or arguments that their skirts are too short….they are simple in jeans and t-shirts. (Most of the time!) Now, I will say, Dudes have HORMONES…different hormones, but hormones nonetheless –but usually I can tell them to go run it off or work out and we are good again. Sweaty testosterone can be scary, stinky and overwhelming, but I love every scary, stinky and overwhelming minutes with my Dudes.
One thing this little challenge has made me realize, is I don’t have very many good pictures of me and the Pop, Tart and Frosting together and I am going to have to fix that SOON!!!  When I do – I’ll have to share! The picture I am posting is from 2009 and it has Pop, Tart, Frosting, Vanilla Mama (A LOT HEAVIER THAN SHE IS NOW – 80lbs heavier!), my wonderful hubby and one of my favorite Fillings!
Live, Laugh, Love~
Vanilla Mama