Still running for the cheese (or why this blog still exists)

As my regular readers can tell, this has been a dry year for me. Just look at the number of posts this year vs. 2008! Awhile back, I had considered either shutting down the Maze, or starting a new blog that would more accurately reflect where I am in life now. Truth be told, sometimes I come here, look around, and feel distinctly hypocrytical about the things I want to write. I'm sure I'm not the only one to ever be in that kind of place.
As the time in between posts has grown longer, I came to realize something. Without the past years' material, where I am now makes very little sense. What good is the destination without the journey? As Christians, so much of the best stuff that happens to us is in the times God is molding us to His image. To throw away the evidence of that process would somehow cheapen the result, I think.
So, here we are, dear friends. I think my little mousie may just have rounded a corner finally. Some things will change around here to reflect the changes in my heart. And you know what? That's ok. As much as I typically rage against anything changed in my life, I'm learning to accept the God-given ones. My prayer is that some of you may be encouraged by what you read here. Hey, you may even be challenged. And of course, if you know me, then you know you always stand a good chance of being offended too. Not intentionally, to be sure! Just know that what you find as you wander this Maze with me may surprise you as much as it does me.

All that to say this:

Welcome to

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Who planned that trip?

I've always been the type to get all reflective (inflective? inflictive? infected? bah.) at the close of the year. Perhaps it's because of the wild ride my life has oftentimes been. (heheh Mr. P., stole your blog title) Regardless, in years previous, I've kept my observations of the year to myself, but this year, I have the Maze! w00t! That means now I have all of you to annoy with my dorkitude. Nerd

This year has been interesting to say the least. For one thing, I've managed to blog for a whole year! Yay! I don't stick with much for long so that really is saying something. When I set out in this Maze, I thought somewhere in the back of my mind that it wouldn't last long because I'm not the writer in the family. Mr. P. has always been the one with the passion for the written arts. I discovered that I enjoy this thing called blogging more than I ever dreamed I might. Lucky for you huh?
Part of the dubious joys of blogging has been watching my inner (and often very hidden) self come through and grow. I'm not the person I was at the beginning of the year, and that's both good and bad. With me, it's always been a 1 step forward, 2 steps back proposition. As I get older, I find that assessment holds even more weight.
Speaking of weight, never in my wildest dreams did I think I'd have joined a gym. Fat Woman 5 <---- gotta love this! I'm looking forward to heading back, now that I have clearance from my surgeon.
Another great segue! Having surgery this year was certainly not in my plans back in January, but I'm grateful for it now. Each day feels like a renewed blessing. Corny to be sure, but very true. It's amazing how you can adjust to long-term pain, but then can quickly forget just how bad it was once you've been set free of it.
Being set free...reminds me of how far I was coming in my faith at the start of the year, and how far I've fallen now. That ol' 1-2 step thing again. In my short time as a Christian, I've had to face many personal demons, and it seems this wacky election year brought many old issues up again for me. Aside from all the ridiculous bickering and BS in the months leading up to Election Day, many of the issues that come with a POTUS race force one to define how they look at the world, and thus in turn, what kind of person they are or hope to be. For those of us with a religious bent, it becomes so much more. It's enough to make you want to not be a grown-up anymore.
Growing up. Ahh. Not only has it been bittersweet to watch my boys grow by leaps and bounds this year, but to find myself feeling like an adult for the first time as well. It's a strange thing for me, and one of the few remaining psychological strongholds my father had on me.
Parents. Meh. Actually, this year has been a defining one for me as a mother. Now I look at my kids in a new light, and hopefully, any other kidlets that come along will help me along this road. The boys have really helped refine me, and challenge me as a mother and person. This year has been the first since their return home that I did not look at our home life and think only of how lacking it was.
Home. As far as 4 letter words go, that's about the best in my mind. This year has been one of tremendous growth and change in our home, and in my marriage. Mr. P. and I have finally figured each other out, and gotten this lil sapling of marital bliss to put down roots. After being rocked by the storms life has thrown our way, it's so good to be where we are. I wouldn't change it for the world.

I know back at the beginning of this journey into blogging, I shared my heart's verse.

Proverbs 16:9- In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps.

Looking back, it's pretty clear that He had a different path planned out for me than I did. I can only guess at what 2009 may have in store for us. Lord willing, it'll be just as inspiring and exciting as this one was. For all it's frustrations and fears, highs and lows, 2008 has been a year like no other. I'm glad this trip wasn't all that I planned it to be. His steps were far better than mine.

Til next squeak,

Friday, December 26, 2008

A lil punch for the New Year in, I've been feeling punchy lately. And somehow, that just got worse. Waa-a-a-a-a-a-ah! My Smiley Central is on the fritz!

Ok, now that that's out of my system...
You'll notice, Dear Squeakers, that the Maze is sporting a New Year's theme. Poor Mousie, his office party got a little out of control this year. After all, no one pimps it like Mousie.
Also, the music on my player may not be within many of your tastes. That's fine, I don't take offense so long as you don't. Simply hit pause on the thing. That's why I keep my player right at the top of my blog. Handy dandy, is it not? The songs this time around are ones that I love to shake-a mah bootay to. (shake-a shake-a Mr. P.)
All in all, my blog often reflects my mood. And unfortunately for the blogosphere, when I'm moody, things around here get odd.
Hopefully with any luck, I'll shake my punchiness off soon and can get back to sweet innocent lil ol me. ;) If not, I've got plenty of punch to ring in the New Year with.

Til next squeak,

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Wow! It only took 9 years!

Sunday was...interesting. At least from a psychological point of view. And for those who know me well, they'll recognize that I'm forever over-analyzing things. Especially when those things involve my in-laws. Rolling Eyes
I've been with Mr. P. for 9 years (in case you couldn't tell by the post title LOL) and in that time, well, let's just say I've had a hate-hate relationship with his family. The feeling's mutual I'm sure. Although a lot of these issues stem from when our kids were in foster care and subsequently came home, some do come from various other personal issues as well. It's been a fun trip to say the least. Pulling My Hair Out
So when Mr. P. and I (me? are you sure?) were invited to the family Christmas shindig this weekend, we were both somewhat wary. Admittedly, I was more on edge than my better half. After all, I'm forever the one who has to make an impression.
Anyway, I bit the bullet, and we went. I must say I'm impressed. It only took 9 years to get to this point. I wasn't treated outright rudely (although flat out ignored by some family members...hey, I'll take that over how it's been in the past) and things went pretty smoothly. My kids had fun, and to me, that's what matters most.
I don't know if Mr. P. feels the same (perhaps he'll chime in with a comment), but it was somewhat strange to feel like an adult around his family. Maybe it was the fact that my SIL is now bringing her SO to family events. Maybe it was the discussion of speeding tickets I overheard from his younger cousin. Maybe it's the fact that I didn't have a baby on my hip like I did the last time I celebrated the holidays with my in-laws. (that oughta date the last time I went over kids are 5 and 7) Who knows? But it's an odd look at oneself nonetheless.
Hopefully this neutral vibe will hold for Christmas dinner at my MIL's. Here's to praying it will. After all, it's been 9 years now. Maybe that's all it takes.

Til next squeak,

Friday, December 19, 2008

Awardage...I haz it.

naejeirual over at Thinkin' gave me an award! (2 actually, but I'm taking 'em one at a time.) Go me! Running Man

I met Laurie some time back on (keep reminding myself to get back over there and somehow I always forget) and she's one of those awesomely encouraging people who you just know is never going to look down on you.

With this wondrous distinction come ponderous inquisitions. Mmmm fun.

Do you have any friends from childhood?
Hmmmm. Not so much from childhood, but from my teenage years, yes. Just ran into her at the grocery store last night. IRL, I'm mostly a loner, and the rare friend I do have, I treasure.

What do you value about your friends?
I love how my friends challenge me. Not one of us is exactly like the other. In fact, the people I hold dear are all so vastly different in so many ways that it has really opened my views on pretty much everything.

Are they your sounding board? Falling Off Chair Laughing Probably more than they care to be.

What activities do you like to share together? Ummm. Hmmm. Well. Since the majority of my friends are online, I'd say chatting online. Doh. I just showed my dorkitude.

I'm going to pass this award on to Meri! I met her over at CMF last year, and re-met earlier this year. She never fails to crack me up and inspire me. Oh, and I got her on the Keurig bandwagon. Smile

Til next squeak,

Sunday, December 7, 2008

On the 6th day...

of post-op, my stitches sent to me...

a nasty lil pic to share with you all. Lol


Til next squeak,

Monday, December 1, 2008

Paw praises and updates!

Well, all went well. Beyond anyone's expectations! I'm thanking God for being with me today, and providing for the ideal (dare I say...perfect?) surgical experience. Actually, if I weren't so stoned on percs right now, I'd be dancing with joy. Bouncy 5
Aside from feeling like I have a normal human hand again, the very best part was being treated delightfully human. Until you've had the horrible experience of being treated like nothing more than monstrous numbers on a scale, it's hard to imagine just how grateful I am to my medical team at UCONN right now. I somehow doubt they often get patients weeping with gratitude as soon as they wake up. Bag Head
Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers, Dear Squeakers. Keep 'em coming as this first week post-op will prove to be challenging.

Til next squeak,

What did I get myself into?

Rolly 3 Well, today's the day. I'm leaving in about an hour for my surgery. While I'm excited at the prospect of not living in pain anymore, I'm nervous about the recovery. I've never been the type to rely on others for help in my personal care, and unfortunately, these next few days will leave me no choice.
I'm also wondering now just what have I gotten myself into. Those ol' demons of self-doubt are raging like you wouldn't believe. I didn't realize just how much of my life I'd put on hold because of my paw. And now? Once I'm healed, I'll have no more ready made excuses.
So, all that to say that these next 2 weeks should be interesting. Well, interesting in that I'll be learning more about myself, and what I'm capable of. Am I capable of letting my loved ones care for me as I've often cared for them? Am I capable of truly trusting God as I have longed to for awhile now? Am I ready to start this new chapter of my life?
In case you're wondering, I'm not actually nervous about the procedure itself. After years of living with these hand/wrist/arm issues, it'll be pure relief to have it done and over with. Somehow, God has given me a healthy dose of that ol' peace that surpasses understanding about all of the actual slicing and snipping. (mmmm sounds great huh?) With how swiftly this was all orchestrated, I trust that it's in His hands.
So Dear Squeakers, I'll keep you updated as often as I can. Until then, enjoy your holiday shopping, and preparing for this glorious season of love and goodwill.

Til next squeak,

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