Sunday 7

1. Halloween is over and we still have so much candy left in bags, which, I am actually having a pretty proud parenting moment about. My mom believes in healthy eating (which isn't a bad thing necessarily! I believe in it too, generally) but growing up, my all-but-complete lack of access to candy or chocolate of any kind left me with what will be a likely lifelong struggle with WANTING ALL THE GOODIES ALL THE TIME. I cannot walk past a candy dish. I love candy way too much than is appropriate for someone my age. I struggle with self-regulation: if it's available, I want it, regardless of whether I've already have a piece (or 10). It's not out of control, obviously, but it's something that I deal with whenever I'm around the possibility of having candy or chocolate. I go right back to that kid who, if the opportunity wasn't seized, would "miss out" again for who knows how long.  I knew going into parenting that I wanted to do this differently; I wanted my kids to be able to not feel the need to "get it while you can". So I've taken a much more laid back, moderate approach. For awhile I had to remind them a lot about making good choices, and "just because it's there, doesn't mean you have to eat it." (Preaching to myself, lol) But now I can have candy dishes around at holidays and they don't disappear in 10 minutes. I let the kids self-regulate their consumption with their candy after Halloween this week and more than one has forgotten all about it! Tristan dumped a bunch of his in the trash, saying he's "not much of a candy guy". Of course they still eat it and enjoy it and trade each other for their favorites-- they're still kids! But they don't obsess over it and half the time, they don't care if they have some or not. Or they'll eat one piece and walk away, on their own, knowing full well they could have more if they wanted to but they don't. I don't feel like I get everything in parenting right... but this one is a big win. :)

2. I signed up for a stitch club. The colder seasons always bring out my inner crafty person and I start thinking about quilting and stitching and sitting by the fire for hours. (My dreams don't usually match reality lol.) Anyway, every month I get a needlework kit sent to me and I just got my November one a few days ago! I am super excited to start it. :)

3. Dan's been working long hours. Last week he was gone in VA for two days. This week he is in Pittsburgh today till Thursday and then, thankfully, he is home/off Friday (which I am calling my honorary birthday celebration [my birthday is actually Sunday]) before he spends Mon-Tues again in VA... and then he and Will head to Haiti Wed-Fri! Speaking of travel, we then leave the following Tuesday (4 days later) for 5 days in KC for Thanksgiving week with Dan's entire family. And then a week and a half later we all head to Honduras to spend 5 days with Anna and Kennet. Crazy, I know. The good news is that, after that, we are HOME until the new year! And the kids are off the whole week between Christmas and New Years, which I plan to spend *the entirety of* hunkered down at home by the fire, reading and stitching while the kids play with their new gifts. Yay dream life. :)

4. Tristan's soccer season came to an abrupt end when they lost their shootout Saturday morning. It was a disappointing end to a great season... but also good prep for life.

5. We hosted a pig roast for about 50 friends yesterday. It was so much fun! The weather cooperated perfectly and we had a bonfire and so much good food brought potluck style by all our amazing friends. The kids played football and frisbee and manhunt and had a massive airsoft war. We made s'mores and laughed and talked well into the night. I know I often say how much I love our community, but truly, they are the best people. We are the luckiest.

6. Thank goodness the election will be over in two days. I have been so disillusioned by so many christian's embrace of Trump. No I don't think Hillary is better. There are two terrible options here. But I just don't understand... I see almost no Christians supporting Hillary. Fine. But SO MANY are behind Trump! What gives?! We Christians represent Christ to this broken world. We are called to a higher standard. We are called to stand with the poor, the needy, the downtrodden. All the people Trump speaks so disparagingly of. It makes me so sad ... I hurt for my minority friends and all the people who are facing ramped up discrimination thanks to Trump and his inflammatory rhetoric. IMO we have two candidates filled with poison, and I'm going to walk away and vote for someone who I think actually would make a good president. *sigh* Two more days.

7. It's birthday month! Anna turns 25 on Tuesday, I turn 35 on Sunday and Olivia turns 7 at the end of the month. My brother Nate also turns 13 next week! And my niece Katie turns 4... she and Olivia share a birthday. :)

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