I've been baking muffins for Jake to take to work, and today's addition was raisin bran muffins. It's been a while since I've made them, and I forgot how delicious healthy goodness tastes. There's nothing wrong with freshly baked muffins in the morning, but I'm learning that if I don't put them away in the freezer as soon as they've cooled, I'm going to eat more than my self-allotted "two-per-day".
It's dangerous to be at home with all these baked goods around, but I've been using healthy ingredients and trying to stay within my limits. Additionally, my 30-day exercise challenge-today is day eight!-has been kicking my butt and helping me to be mindful about what I eat again.
That mindfulness has caused me to save the best for last. At the end of the day I have one indulgence: Chocolate peanut butter "fondue". I use the word fondue loosely because it's not your typical romantic, slowly-savoured fruit-starring chocolate-y magical goodness. It's melting a tablespoon of peanut butter and a handful of chocolate chips in the microwave and dipping a banana in the ensuing gooey mess. Don't even think for a second that I gobble up the banana as quickly as possible and then savour the rest of the melted peanut butter/chocolate mixture by itself. With a spoon. Slowly.
Because that never happens.
This can be hard to do.
Adrian has been awake pretty non-stop for the past couple of days. He has been napping on and off, but they have been so unpredictable. For example, as I type this he's napping on me, but who is to say he won't wake up the moment I move him to his bed?
I'm so grateful to be doing this parent thing with Jake. He's always telling me,"I'm on your side" when my frustration mounts to the point of seeing him as the enemy. When I get frustrated and worn out with Adrian, Jake is always there to give me a break, and vice versa. We're partners, and I like it that way.
However, I have to work really hard to remember that he isn't just the father of our child, but that he's my husband who also deserves much needed love and attention when he gets worn out and tired from day to day life as a parent, student, and sole provider for our family.
Babe, I love you, and you work so hard to keep this family happy and healthy. Thanks for being my partner and for having godly patience and wisdom when times get tough.
You know that thing that God tests you on? That "thing" that you keep thinking you've got under wraps then all of a sudden shows up again at the most inappropriate moment? Well, mine is patience. All my life God keeps bringing me back to this one thing, and, at surface level, it doesn't feel like I'm becoming any more patient. If I take a deeper look, however, I can see those places where God has used His tests to hone my character to be more Christlike, where patience has prevailed despite my sinful human nature.
Recently Jake and I acquired some news that will challenge our spiritual character for years to come. I keep asking the Lord to please give me more patience, and I think He's just given me the lifetime training plan for it.
Character building is ongoing in the life of a believer, and our Teacher has high expectations.
He doesn't challenge us without giving us the necessary tools to navigate through, and He's always patient with us!
There is also hope in knowing that these struggles only last for this lifetime, and that when we worship God in eternity, he will have made our character training complete.
As I caught myself stuffing my face with marshmallows for the millionth time in a desperate attempt for some quick sustenance, I realized something had to change. I love change and variety, I really do, but right now what I need is stability. Jake and I decided to come up with a weekly meal plan that we can count on, so we're not scratching our heads wondering what to make, or, worse, giving up on a meal because it's too complicated for our busy schedules. Better yet, Jake can make at least three of these meals! Here is our very user-friendly, easily adaptable meal plan for this season of our lives:
Here are my recommendations to Jake :
1. The Book of Negroes, by Lawrence Hill
2. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, by Steig Larsson
3. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini
Jake's recommendations for me are as follows (he actually recommended four because I read more than he does):
1. Spiritual Leadership: Moving People on to God's Agenda, by Henry T. Blackaby
2. Katherine Parr: A Guided Tour of the Life and Thought, Brandon G. Withrow
3. Wheel of Time, by Robert Jordan
4. Mere Christianity, by C.S. Lewis
The idea is to expand our reading genres, and since I generally read dramatic fiction novels, Jake's got a good list for me with fantasy and some non fiction. Aside from these three, I also plan to read The Hobbit again (that was a mandatory read in Grade 8), and get into some more Christian life non fiction.
Does anyone else struggle with the idea of re-reading a favourite book? There are so many books to read that it feels like a waste to re-read. And yet, if you love the book, why not? As Christians, we're constantly re-reading the Bible, and we always get new and fresh truths from it each time. Perhaps re-reading isn't all for naught after all...
I hope that everyone had a wonderful New Years' celebration, too. This year we have some exciting things to look forward to, including a family trip to Florida, Adrian's first birthday, and possibly a move!
Have a wonderful weekend!