Friday, May 29, 2009

Diet and Exercise

Once a year I usually get on a health kick. It usually happens at the beginning of the new year but this year that didn't happened. I think I was on a don't spend money kick at that time so I never really got on the health kick. It took a little longer this year but now I'm on it. I start by thinking we need to eat things with a little bit more nutrition than usual instead of all the prepackaged stuff. Don't get me wrong, we are not throwing that stuff out. We are just adding more fruits and vegetables, maybe a little yogurt and cheese. This is all to even out all the pop tarts my kids eat and all the sugar in everything. This year my health kick started with Brad being on a diet so he needs things with less calories and then it progressed because I started trying on my spring and summer clothes and realized that a lot of them are a little tighter than they were last year. And by a little tighter I mean that I can tie them I just can't sit in them and breathing is a little difficult. Now I am all for buying some new clothes but my clothes fund only has $50 in it and both Brad and I need new clothes. So unless someone knows of a place that I can get both of us a new wardrobe for $50 I think I better lose a few pounds.

About a month ago I read this post by Melanie. After reading this post for some reason I felt compelled to buy "The 30 Day Shred" with Jillian Micheals. I bought it off Ebay and chose the slowest shipping possible to put off starting it. Then when I finally got it, I realized that Brad hooked up the DVD player wrong and there is no sound. Bummer! I still couldn't start! After begging and pleading with him to fix it because I was really looking forward to being in pain, I finally decided to just use the computer. Now, this DVD claims to help you lose 20lbs in 30 days. I am not looking to actually do this, since I would actually weigh the same as I did in high school and that might just look plain silly on an old lady like me. But I am looking forward to actually having a few muscles. So, yesterday I took the plunge and started. WOW! What a workout! If you want to work every muscle in your body, this is the workout for you! My arms and legs are in some pain today but not nearly as bad as I thought. The only problem, I have to do this again today! Now I've tried a lot of videos before and they usually have me jumping around everywhere and I'm confused as to what I'm supposed to be doing. Thankfully this is not one of them. It's a lot of basic things like push-ups, jumping jacks, crunches. It just really pushes you. I will let you know how it continues. If you notice me with arm muscles you'll know it's going good.

And on a side note, thanks to Beth Van Baren for taking the plunge and being my 3rd follower! One day I will work on finding out how to set it up so you can all recieve my posts by email, but this week I learned how to add links. I like to only learn one new thing at a time!

It's a Green Day

It is now 8:15 in the morning and I am feeding the kids breakfast for the 2nd time. Thankfully their idea of a gourmet breakfast is pop tarts and cereal. Each kid that had a pop tart at 7:15 is now having cereal at 8:15 and the cereal eaters are having pop tarts now.

Last night we had our first successful friend sleepover. Joshua had Ben Bruinsma overnight. It's amazing how much excitement and noise one more boy can add to the house.

Also, last night, I came home at 11:00 and pressed the garage opener to pull my van in the garage. I noticed that one of the wheels had come out of the track. So I went upstairs to wake up Brad. He was not very happy that I had woken him up but I didn't want to leave the garage door open all night and I reminded him that I did nothing but press the button. He came and looked at it and apparently the kids had shoved some sort of hose in there. If there is a way to break something, they will usually find it! He finally got it out but the wheel is still out of the track. I would have taken a picture but he was not too happy about this so I don't think he would have been too happy if I was snapping pictures of him at this point in time.

Update: Joshua told me that he didn't do it, but he thinks the racoons might have. Those silly racoons, I put a brick on the garbage can so they can't dig through the garbage so they must have gotten me back by breaking the garage door!

So off to bed it was, I came up with this awesome blog post last night while laying in bed. It was witty, funny and some really good material. Then I woke up this morning and it was lost! If only I would blog at midnight you guys would have some good stuff to read. And by "you guys" I mean my 2 followers. Just wondering who is going to take the plunge and become my 3rd follower. I know there are actually a couple more of you out there.

Although Brad claims to not like my blog he happily posed for this picture knowing that it was going on the blog. Yesterday Brad went against all that he believes (ok, maybe not all) and became a "Green Certified" Painter. Not that we like to trash the earth or anything, it's just that we think Global Warming is a myth. And being "Green" is just politically hyped up. I think that MckMama's husband Prince Charming says it best. (Sorry but if you go to that link, you have to scroll down quite a bit to where he is talking about her Green ways.)
So if anyone is ever in need of a "Green" painter, Brad is your man!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend

This weekend was pretty uneventful. But we did do a few things. Saturday night we had some friends over. Brad was determined to have Authentic Mexican. I was sent to a store where I was told they only spoke Spanish and had to get some kind of meat that I still don't know the name of. I was also forced to buy cheese that cost a fortune and go against all of my frugal ways. But here is the concoction that Nathan Vis made.

Sunday was a beautiful day! We decided to have our gourmet meal outside. I made grilled cheese for me and the kids, Brad had leftover tacos. Of course, I added bacon to my grilled cheese which made it oh so delicious. In case you don't know, Brad and I have a huge love for bacon! We will put it on anything and everything! Our kids have not yet developed this love which is fine by me because then there is more bacon for me and Brad. Joshua did ask for bacon on his grilled cheese, when some of it fell out of his sandwich I made him pick it up and eat it. WE DO NOT WASTE BACON! As you can see in the background, there is a big circle of sand. That is where the pool will be going.

On Monday most of the day was business as usual. Brad worked til about 2 and I did my usual Monday chores of paying bills, bookwork, and laundry. When you're a mom you don't really get holidays and if you do, that means the next day has twice as much work to get done. Late afternoon we headed down to DeMotte to have a cookout with the Vis family. We ate some good food and just sat around. Everyone else played some sort of game that they had to run around, but I prefer to sit after eating a ton of food. The girls let me do a little photo shoot and the boys of course were too busy running around to let me take some pictures.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Get it? Randomness - Randomvis. Not sure if randomness is a real word but it is in my world. is a bunch of random things going on in the Vis house.

1. Brad is super busy with work. Monday night he didn't get home until 9:30! I am not complaining though especially since in a couple weeks he might be sitting around doing nothing.

2. While in the shower this morning I was interupted by this question. "Mom, can Isaac take his glasses off while we play boxing?" Yes, we have moved on from wrestling to boxing.

3. Brad told the kids they can't watch Diego anymore because they keep talking about rainforests. In our house we do not save rainforests!

4. I have been busy quoting insurance. In case you haven't heard, I passed my insurance exam and am now selling insurance. I love that I can get on the program at home and can do it all from here.

5. We are going to have an above ground pool soon and a we got a camper. We get to relive my childhood by camping and swimming. Now all we need is a dog and a garden so I can make the kids go weed instead of having fun in the pool. We will not be getting a dog, maybe a garden next year.

6. Isaac has been walking around with tape on his glasses for a week and a half now. New glasses have been ordered and thankfully we made it the eyeglass store 4 days before his warranty expired! Talk about great timing!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

They're Keepers

Sunday night after supper, I was in the kitchen doing dishes. Joshua comes downstairs and says, "Mommy, stay down here because we are making you a surprise." A few minutes later I was called upstairs to see my surprise and instructed to close my eyes until I was in my bedroom. When I opened my eyes, this is what I found.

They made my bed for me. Even put my pillows just like I do! What good kids!

I think I'll keep them.

(For those of you wondering why my bed was not made, I never make it on Sunday because I always like to take a little afternoon nap but I do make it every other day)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Joshua And Programs

Joshua has always been a little bit of a Mama's boy. I have to say that I don't mind it one bit. I eat it up every night when he asks if I can be the one to put him to bed. I love it when he asks for me to climb up to the top bunk while he says his prayer and then wants me to lay with him for a little while. It's just a few minutes of the day when he can talk to me and tell me anything he wants and has my full undivided attention with no one else to interrupt us. I love to listen to whatever story he has for me or any questions he has to ask. I love to watch the expressions on his face whether he is excited or hurt or sad.
Joshua has a very tender heart and gets his feelings hurt easily. But he is very caring, always willing to help out and is always trying to do the right thing. If he happens to disobey, he is usually pretty quick to tell me.

He is very shy and gets embarrassed pretty easily. He is afraid of crowds and if we have baptism at church he can get clingy to me because there are new and different people at church that he doesn't know. So, it goes without saying that if there were to be a program that he has to stand in front of a group of people and sing he doesn't like it and gets pretty embarrassed. He was in a program for MOPS in January and this is what we saw.

Yep, he stood with his head down the entire time and looked at the floor. Even walked out like that.

In May, he had another MOPS program and this is what we saw.

I actually told him the night before to prepare him. We did what all good parents do, we bribed him to stand up there and sing. He woke up that morning and the first thing he told me was that he didn't want to go to MOPS. But he did get up there and he did actually sing, he just did it with his hands over his ears.

Well, today was his Sunday school program at church. How I wish I would have had my camera! He actually knew about this program for over a week and has been worried about it the whole time. Last night we had him pray about it because he was so worried. This morning he started crying right before the program but Brad made him go up. He stood with his hands over his eyes the entire time! I'm not quite sure if he thought that if he can't see anyone then they can't see him. Now that it is over we can laugh about it for years to come. I sure am hoping this is something he will grow out of.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

5 Years Ago

Ask me what happened 5 days ago? I don't know. 5 hours ago? Not the foggiest. But 5 years ago I was in the hospital, and surprisingly I remember a lot of details from that time. Thanks to my sister Beth, I have a whole scrapbook of pictures too. I love it! Thanks Beth! These are pictures from my hospital stay.

It's hard to believe that it has been 5 years already! It was a time that my biggest worries were what should I order for my meals (I had the whole menu memorized and had my favorite days and then on the weekends I would treat myself to hamburgers, french fries and shakes), what time I would shower, what visitors were coming and what time. And as you see above I always looked forward to someone coming that would wheel me outside to enjoy my Dr. approved 1/2 hour outside in the beautiful sunshine.

I still remember the feeling of my babies moving all over in my stomach and certain parts would move as one child moved and not another. A very wierd feeling that is very hard to explain.

I would get so sick of sitting around and not being able to do things myself. Why? I'm not really sure. I'd give anything to have a day of nothing planned and people making my meals. Hey, I'd give anything for a day of being able to sit down at all my meals and actually eat them in peace.

Also, why did everyone around me have to lose weight when I was gaining it? Look at my mom and Brad! So skinny!!!!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Two Minor Problems

Isaac is our little blessing that was born a large, healthy baby! But over the years we have found a couple minor health problems. He seems to have a knack for taking the odd diseases that his aunt's had and taking them on for himself. Hey, at least we have someone to blame, right? He has a lazy eye which he gets from the Vis side and more specifically his Aunt Brenda. If you are reading this, sorry to blame you but don't worry you're not the only one getting blamed! And from the Eriks side he has accumulated 2 extra teeth, more specifically from his Aunt Beth who also had this problem.

When he was about 9 months I noticed his eye was turning in and asked his Dr. at his 9 month check-up. We took him to a specialist and found out that he had Strabismus or Lazy Eye. By the time he was 1 he had his first pair of glasses. After heading to Chicago for many appointments as they tried to correct this problem then about a year ago he had surgery. He has been doing good ever since and has been wearing bifocals to continue to correct this. We did end up having to switch Dr's last year because of an insurance change but it couldn't have worked out better. Our Dr. in Chicago has a partner that happens to come to an office in Dyer, so it's really close by and we are really happy with him. Isaac loves the new Dr. since they have toys for him to play with and they give him stickers! He won't have another appointment until November and they might take him out of the bifocals at that time.

Now on to his tooth problem. About a year ago I was concerned about a gap between his teeth and took him to a dentist. If you look closely in the picture above you can see the gap. The dentist took an x-ray and thought she saw an extra tooth and passed us on to an oral surgeon. The oral surgeon said that there was definitely an extra tooth, but come back in 6 months to get a scan done because he would be a little older and would hopefully sit still. Hopefully the scan would show us exactly what was going on. We had that scan done about 2 months ago (he sat great!) and last week the surgeon finally got back to us. Not only does he have one extra tooth, he has two extra teeth! He needs to have them removed sometime in the next 6 months so that it doesn't start affecting his other teeth. So we will be planning another surgery. Lovely!!!! The real kicker is that it is Dental so the surgeon's fees are not covered, but since he is so young he needs it done in a hospital or surgery center which is covered by our Medical Insurance. But of course 2 weeks before they called me I had raised our deductible because of a premium increase. So, we pretty much get to pay for it all. I'm thinking Beth should be responsible because she passed the problem on to him, what do you all think?

But after a little negativity there, I am thankful that he only has minor problems that can be taken care of. It could be a lot worse, right? God sometimes shows us that when we think we have it all figured out he can throw a monkey wrench in our plans. He's always showing us that HE is the one in control!

We will let you all know when his surgery is scheduled. I think we are going to wait until summer is over. And Brenda and Beth I hope you know I'm just joking, I don't really blame you!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Oh, the things they say!

Last Summer I read an idea that I thought was great! Write down all the cute or funny things your kids say and the date so you remember these things. Since my memory is that of an 80 yr old, I thought this idea was fantastic! The problem was remembering to write them down. I did get a few things down and will a share a few of the things that I wrote down in 2008 with more to come later. Hopefully this will keep my 2 followers coming back for more. Oh, the suspense!

After telling the kids not to play with Daddy's gas can, Alex comes in the house and says, "Daddy's gas is bad, right mom?"

One day we were driving and we heard an ambulance in the distance. Amanda says, "Mommy, someone's watching a parade."

"Is it going to be a big one or a little one?" This is the question Isaac would often ask in all seriousness just before getting a spanking.

"Amanda, where's your hair?" Isaac asked this while watching home videos of them as babies.

Joshua asked this when we saw an ambulance on the road. "Mommy, is that for sick people or for dead people?" Me, "For sick people." He replied, "Then what do dead people ride in?"

"I'm spilling!" Isaac's way of saying that he didn't make it to the toilet in time.

The following is a conversation that took place last October. One morning we were eating breakfast and Joshua randomly told me that he did not want to die and go to heaven. Many questions followed by all the kids (that's a real shocker). After a while it came out that he thought it would be painful to die and he thought that in order to die and go to heaven he would have to have nails in his hands just like Jesus. The next day we were listening to a song in the car "I will sing of my Redeemer" and in this song there is a line that says "He took the nails for me". So I pointed it out to Joshua and told him that Jesus took the nails for us so we don't have to have nails. To which he replied, "Then who took the hammer?"

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day Weekend

For 3 years now I have been walking in the Hike For Life which benefits PASS Pregnancy Center but this is the first year that I have been able to take Alex and Amanda. I walked 4 miles with a few women from my church and then I pulled the girls in a wagon. They were so good and were quieter than I had ever heard them, they only spoke when we got to one of the checkpoints and there was food and Gatorade. When we were done walking we were able to enjoy some lunch and the girls each got a balloon shaped like a flower. They also had one of those big blow up slides so they got to go on that a handful of times. I'm hoping they will join me every year now but eventually they will have to walk! When we got home, Brad and the boys were just getting home with a cake and some flowers for me. I think the cake was more for the kids though than me!

Today we were able to spend the day with just our family. The kids and Brad made me feel special all day. I heard "Happy Mother's Day" so many times during the day. During church Amanda poked me and whispered "Happy Mother's Day" and then a little later in the service poked me again to tell me that she loves me. So cute! Brad peeled the potatoes, got the roast in the oven, served breakfast and then got dinner all ready when we got home from church. What a great husband!!! I told him that I'm looking forward to him doing this again next year. We then got in a quick nap and then took a trip to the cemetery. Although I think about my mom a lot, Mother's Day is a nice day to once again remember all that she taught me and how blessed we all are to have had her in our life.

After evening church I wanted to go to the park in Munster and take a nice family walk around the pond there. Of course when we got out of church the temperature had dropped quite a bit, but once you tell the kids you are doing something it's hard to take it back. So, we went and we froze. Here are a few pictures from our walk.

Amanda is looking a little exhausted in this picture.

When I took the camera out I told Brad I needed to take some pictures for my blog, so he is trying to get out of the picture.
After our walk we came home and had a very nutritious supper of cake and ice cream!

That was my Mother's Day! Thanks Brad and kids I had a great day!!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009


I've been wanting to start a blog for quite a while now, maybe since last fall. What has stopped me, you ask? A name! I am an indecisive person and I tend to overthink small things. So, when it came to picking a name I've been overthinking it. Everyone has such cute catchy titles and I wanted to have the same. Well, I gave up. I have a name, no one said it was good but it is my name and I think it applies to my life. I have 4 blessings that God has given to Brad and I, plus I try to live my life looking at all of the other blessings that He has given to us. That is what I hope to portray in this blog. But mostly I'm guessing it will be about my 4 little blessings Alex, Amanda, Joshua and Isaac. I'm not a scrapbooker and I didn't do real good with their baby books, I tried to write down cute things they say, but that hasn't gone too good either. So, I'm hoping this blog will help me keep track of their lives and all the cute things they say and do, and probably some of the not so cute things too! Now I just have to try and figure all this out.