Tuesday, December 14, 2010

the simple woman's daybook

it has been a while since i did this. like my gratitude list, it helps me reflect on what is good. i have finally written down what the "questions" are in my journal and i am filling them in every now and then (even when i cannot get to the computer). i am thinking of coming up with a shorter list for my children. it might be fun to keep a journal for them as well.

outside my window...
we are experiencing an unusually warm december day. the sky is blue with just a few low white clouds. no snow in sight :)

I am thinking...
that i am really behind. that i am overwhelmed with the long list of to-dos that never seem to get done. that i need to give myself a little grace.

i am thankful for...
6 days off. i worked 4 of the last 5 and am using today to catch up on sleep, cuddle time, and cleaning.

from the learning room...
we took a week off due to my work schedule. the KISA has approached me about being more involved, which i am grateful for, but i also feel guilty about. isn't it my job to do the schooling?

from the kitchen...
tonight it is ham and noodle casserole. a delicious combo of ham, elbow noodles, cottage cheese, sour cream, milk and some dill week that is wonderful! i will make 2 so that i can start to restock the freezer.

i am wearing...
a white tank top, blue sweats and a grey hoodie.

i am creating...
more to do lists *sigh*

i am going...
insane? no, really... just a little crazy when i think about all the stuff that needs done that i have been putting off.

i am reading...
not a whole lot right now. not even my Bible. which is definitely having a very negative impact on my outlook.

i am hoping and praying...
that i can start to pull out of the downward slide into mild depression. it is starting to get ugly.

i am hearing...
my children playing on the wooden play structure as they climb and poise themselves precariously on the top (yikes!)

around the house...
mounds of laundry, a few sinks that need wiping, and a vacuum that needs to be used everywhere, esp on the stairs.

one of my favorite things...
when the KISA brings in little JD to me in the morning to nurse him. he gets the biggest cheesy grin on his face when he sees me. then i turn him back over and fall back to sleep for a few more hours. i don't like working until 4 am, but i love my alarm clock :)

a few plans for the rest of the week...
i am hoping to get our school scheduled for the next 6 weeks so that the KISA can jump in on days i work. i really do not want to waste any of my days off, so i will be baking our Christmas cookies and making plates for the neighbors and our pastors. i need to finish off the Christmas shopping and plan our Christmas breakfast (i work Christmas evening from 3p-3a, so we are going to have a big breakfast instead of a dinner).

i am rejoicing...
in the knowledge that even though i have removed myself from the Lord's presence in many ways, He is ever present with me. He has not moved. He never will. i know that as i slowly make my way back to Him, there will be open arms and a wonderful loving hug from my Savior. i am so glad my salvation isn't dependent on me.

here is a picture thought...

this is the cake i made for my son's 8th birthday last week. i had a lot of fun doing it :) my kids call me "cake boss!" it is pound cake cut and layered to create the cab, a loaf of pound cake hollowed out some for the dump truck, oreo cookie crumbs for dirt, and marshmallow cookies for the wheels. it took forever (and a whole lot of food coloring) to get the orange color just right. i am not sure how i will top this one!

to read more and to participate, please visit The Simple Woman's Daybook.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

the first, and i hope the last, time

i work in an emergency room.

it is inevitable that i see things that are like indelible stains in my memory.

stories, images. sometimes they flow through my head at night at lightning speed.

sometimes they are slow motion images that haunt.

could we have done anything else?

should we have done something different?

how on earth is that family going to go home tonight and wake up in the morning and just breathe?

i had to do something for the first time in my 15+ years of nursing. 10 of which has been spent in the emergency room.

i had to participate in a code of a 12 year old boy.

a code is where the person you are caring for is no longer breathing and doesn't have a heart beat.

he was 12.

the circumstances surrounding what put him in that situation were totally accidental. wrong place, wrong time.

he was 12.

we switch off doing chest compressions every 1-2 minutes because it is exhausting.

i got to be his heart beat every few minutes.

he was 12.

i keep coming back to that because i cannot wrap my head around it.

the mother had to come in after we had done everything, everything we could have done.

she had to say good-bye.

and then go home to his room.

still a mess, probably.

maybe some dirty clothes on the floor.

some open comic books spread out.

school books in a backpack.

how on earth do you sleep after saying goodbye?

how do you even say goodbye?

i hope i never have to do that again.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Celebration

we have a lot to be thankful for

a lot

this year has been hard for us

my husband's career change

a new baby after a few months of bedrest

a move across a few states

returning to full time employment

going through our retirement funds

it has been a rough go.

but, you know what?

God has met us at every turn.

better than that..

He has gone ahead of us.

and prepared the way.

the best way, the way that He would have us go.

and for that, i am thankful.

Many blessings to you and yours. may you know the joy of Jesus Christ and know Him in a tangible way.

as we have. in the little day to day needs. like diapers and spaghetti noodles and deodorant.

and in the big needs. like monetary gifts and prayer warriors on their knees.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

slowly, but surely

i feel like i am whining. a lot.

about how difficult this new road is. how hard it is to manage everything and everyone and maintain just the bare minimum.

how i am not even done unpacking yet.

and it is carrying over onto this blog, because it seems like when i post, or when i think about posting, it is all connected to this struggle.

so, even though it isn't monday, i am going to do my Multitude Monday post, anyway.

holy experience

because i need to refocus. not just in my scatter-brained head where i will get distracted after the first or second gift.

but make it tangible. so i can look back on it and remember that there is good in my life right now. it isn't all craziness and chaos and things that make me cry.

how about you? do you need to take a moment to refocus? head on over to A Holy Experience and join in the Gratitude Community. it will change your life.

my baby's first real crawl! on his 7 month birth-day!

that i was here, at home, and not at work to see it happen :)

two days later, his first unsupported sit. now he is going all over the place sitting and crawling and basically making us all jump up when he gets too close to the hall or the stairs (the gate is going up today!)

the illness that kept me down for 24 hours solid, but then relented... apparently i needed a day of rest. (next time i could forgo the vomiting, though!)

the husband that took charge so that i could lay in bed and on the couch for that 24 hours

the prayer cover that prevented anyone else in the house from coming down with the same illness

"caviar" cat... a constant companion for my 7 year old since he was 2. our "velveteen rabbit" that has been eating with us and playing with us non-stop. he had been put away for a time, but tictac was needing his special friend lately

a tender moment of play between bonobo and stinkerbell. he occasionally shows her love even though he claims to despise her :)

'knocking down hugs' from a 3 year old princess

whispers of 'i love you,too' from my children as i close the door at bedtime

pulling the blankets over pajama-clad bodies as i check on the sleeping babes one more time before i go to bed... even at 4 am.

multiple mid-night nursing sessions with the baby. i love that i can still comfort him in this way... and i don't even care that he should be sleeping through the night right now.

the crazy inventions of my 7 year old as he devises plans to create his own world.. along with pictures :)

my daughters new found love for puzzles. they occupied her for hours the other day

the potential client my husband sat down with this week

extended story time with all the kids as we continued our journey with transportation

lovin' , kiss and headbonk...a tradition that disappeared for a while, but is making its way back into our nighttime routine

i am glad to share these with you as i record my list. slowly making my way toward 1000 gifts! #'s 141-157

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Monday, November 8, 2010


holy experience

and so another week has passed, and i am struggling to remember to count up my gifts.

gifts from a God who cares about all the little details, not just the big stuff.

a backyard full of crispy crunching leaves, providing endless games for the big boys

the hair and clothing full of leaf bits... proof of fun had outdoors

the gorgeous warm fall weather we have had this season, and not being cooped up indoors by rain and snow

tylenol that takes away fevers that get out of control and make the stinkerbell more stinker than bell

the humidifier that has kept her cough manageable at night

the nebulizers that keep us from making a trip to the emergency room when she is having a hard time breathing

knowing that this illness will pass

no one else in the house has come down with the nasty cold she has

precious few minutes to cuddle on the couch with my babe before going in for my third day in a row of work

the reaching arms of an almost 7 month old little boy when he sees me enter the room

plans to go see the King Tut exhibit to celebrate my son's 8th birthday.... and maybe a final exodus out of Egypt in the schoolroom (please... i feel like we have been in egypt forever!!)

library books to accompany our study on modes of transportation through the ages

the yellow swing in the backyard that all the children (except the babe, of course) have mastered all by themselves!! (it only took Tic Tac 7 1/2 years to learn how to pump his legs to get it moving!)

suction cups on foreheads

leftover white chili so i don't have to cook tonight


laughing through pain

smiling through tears

rejoicing in grief

join in with the gratitude community over at A Holy Experience

gifts #122-140
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Monday, November 1, 2010

multitude monday...

it has been a while.

i haven't been too focused on counting up my gifts lately.

i finally picked up a journal that a sweet friend gave me and i have been jotting down things here and there.

but in light of this post, i think i need to remember to be thankful for the basics today.

because God has been overly gracious in His provision for my family.

we are all just one step away from being humbled by our "things"

from losing them, that is.

whether it be financial struggles that cause us to pare down, even lose things like a house.

or a disaster like a hurricane or house fire.

tomorrow i could wake up and not have a place to lay my head.

so, today, i will be grateful for the little "luxuries" that i so take for granted

110) as i tucked in my son we thanked God for a soft bed, a blanket and his pillow.

111) i am grateful for the plate on which i ate my hot dinner of pizza and green beans, an not having to eat cold soup out of a can with a plastic spoon.

112) i am grateful for a faucet that runs cold, clean water whenever i thirst.

113) i am grateful for hot water in which i shower, launder our clothes and bathe my children.

114) i am grateful that God has changed my heart so that i can give to a man in need without being cynical

115) i am grateful for my sweater that i can put on when i get chilly.

116) i am grateful for the crib where little JD lays his head.

117) and for his warm, footed sleepers that keep him cozy at night when the weather gets cold.

118) i am grateful for the roof over our heads and firm walls that keep out the cold air.

119) i am grateful for the socks without holes, the shoes with soles and a closet full of clothes that fit.

120) i am grateful that we didn't lose our house in the financial turmoil of the last year.

121) i am grateful to God for showing my a glimpse of humanity and giving me a dose of hard reality and a chance to share with my children how good we have it.

do you want to count up your gifts? join in here.

holy experience

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Saturday, October 30, 2010


a homeless man just came to our door.

how do i know he was homeless?

he was dirty, his clothes ill fitting. he had the marks of drug abuse. the drawn skin, toothless, gaunt face. hollow cheeks. malnourished.

all the signs were there.

"Ma'am? Could I rake your yard for a dollar? I'm awfully hungry."

"No, thank you," I say.

he turns to go. i can see the disappointment on his face.

in one hand is a rake that has seen better days. it is missing several tines and my guess is that he pulled it from someone's trash with one goal in mind: earn some money.

in the other hand is a plastic grocery bag filled with odds and ends. i can see a margarine container, other plastics and some paper goods.

"But can I get you something to eat?" I ask gently.

in one arm i am holding my 6 month old. He smiles at the baby and says, "Yes, Ma'am."

"Wait here, I will be right back."

i scramble around the kitchen looking for things to put in a plastic grocery bag. we are nearing our regular trip to the grocery store, so the pickin's are slim.

but not as slim as his.

i grab two pieces of fruit, granola bars, cereal bars, a plastic spoon and the last can of soup with a pull top lid. i know he will have to eat it cold, but somehow, i don't think he will mind. i want to give him more, but somehow i am not sure what else to put in, and i am afraid he will leave without it if i take too long.

"Mommy, why are you putting that food in a bag?" my oldest asks.

"Mommy, who is that man on the porch? Why is he so dirty?" the 5 year old asks.

i go to the door and open it, he is still standing there.

i hand him the bag. "It isn't much." I say, apologetically.

"That's OK, Ma'am. Thank you."

and then he gives me a blessing of sorts. it is his way of paying me for the food.

"May you always have money to buy food. May your children do well in school. May they grow up to make lots of money so they can take care of you. May you always have enough money to pay the bills. May you always have good health."

"God bless you" I say. tears are now in my eyes.

He shuffles off the porch.

I cry.

in his blessing was his story. at least a piece of it. he ran out of money to pay bills. perhaps that is how he became homeless. maybe he lost his job first. he doesn't have money to buy food and so he has to go house to house begging for work and a dollar here and there.

if he was scamming me, i don't care. he was obviously hungry, and so i did for him what i could. in my mind i knew i wasn't going to give him money. but i could give him food.

and now i can pray for this nameless man who came to our door. and i can explain to my children just a small piece of how good we have it. and how bad it is for others.

i wish i could have taken his picture for you.

i wonder if he will come back.

i am starting a list of items i could get and have ready if the opportunity ever presents itself again.

and i am humbled by humanity.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Simple Woman's Daybook

(a day late, again...)

outside my window...
the leaves are falling fast and furious. the wind the last two days is stripping off the leaves at a rapid rate. my children are begging for a leaf pile to jump in :)

i am thinking...
this morning is going to be crazy as we play 'catch up.' work is wreaking havoc on our daily routines.

i am thankful for...
well, lots of things. this morning, i am especially grateful for the time i was able to spend with each child last night as i tucked them in. another area work affects.

from the learning room...
i am just grateful we are managing to get any school done at all!! still rowing Mike Mulligan.

from the kitchen...
crockpot macaroni and cheese. perfect for this fall weather :)

i am wearing...
grey lounge pants and a white long sleeve shirt. for the first time in a LONG time i had to wear socks to bed!

i am creating...
not a whole lot. we are going to try to create some steam powered boats this weekend to round out the school week.

i am going...
absolutely nowhere, and loving it!! tomorrow is going to be crazy with bible study and work.

i am reading...
the book of Daniel. i have to finish my lesson today in prep for tomorrow and help my 7 year old finish his study as well.

i am hoping and praying...
that i can figure out how to manage our home and school and work without going completely nuts

i am hearing...
the sound of Down Gilead Lane as the kids listen and eat their breakfast.

around the house...
um, still waiting for the couch to come in from the garage! our 'help' fell through last week, so it is still in plastic! also are two piles of laundry...sigh

one of my favorite things...
the sweet nuzzling of my baby boy as he wakes up in the morning. i love how he immediately goes from upset to thrilled when he sees me.

a few plans for the rest of the week...
bible study tomorrow morning. work tomorrow and friday night. sleep on saturday morning, the pumpkin decorating. church on sunday with a new members' class in the afternoon. trick or treating at a local nursing home sunday evening (the only way my kids can go out for candy!)

i am rejoicing!
in the long awaited birth of a third little boy for a dear friend. praising God for His goodness in bringing this family the joy in his birth and not sorrow. grateful for the peace and joy his mommy is feeling as she gets to know her new little man :)

here is a picture thought
this is a tree from the side of our house a few days ago. i love how brilliant it is!! this picture doesn't do it justice.

to participate in A Simple Woman's Daybook, go here.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

the Simple Woman's Daybook

to participate in the simple woman's daybook, please visit here

Outside my window...trees filled with orange and yellow leaves... a delight to my eyes after a few years of autumn-less living.
I am thinking...on how to foster love between the 5 year old and 3 year old sibs
I am thankful for... a husband determined to make his business work
From the learning rooms...we are focusing on steam power this week as we row Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel
From the kitchen... tuna melt roll (really, really good!!)
I am wearing...blue jeans and a blue shirt that i won't wear out in public because it is not a very pleasing shade.
I am creating...music in my head... not fit for public consumption
I am going... to unpack at least one box today if it kills me!
I am reading... the book of Daniel
I am hoping... that my husband secures at least two new clients before the end of the month
I am hearing...my 5 yr old playing with the 6 month old as he explores the floor
Around the house...is still a mess... but today, we get our couch! yippee!! something other than the floor to sit on :)
One of my favorite things... this delicious coffee i am sipping while the kids are engaged in BOB time (books on bed, created by a FIAR mom, Julie.)
A few plans for the rest of the week: make freezer meals for the family to eat while i work this weekend.
Here is a picture for thought I am sharing...

Monday, October 4, 2010

a genuine hug

holy experience

i have been hugged lots of ways.

when saying good-bye to good friends you aren't sure you will see again this side of eternity, the hugs tend to be firm, long and even mingled with tears.

when hugging my KISA after a fight, they tend to be long, with strokes on the back that say 'i am truly sorry.'

when hugging my children good-night, i usually give a 'squeezy hug' accompanied by a sneaky tickle under the arms.

but most of my hugs are probably on the lighter side. i would hate to make someone feel uncomfortable by intruding into their personal space.

well, yesterday, i was on the receiving end of one of the best hugs ever.

let me 'splain. no, let me sum up...

we all went to church yesterday morning. the littler kids go to the nursery or sunday school class, and the older 2 stay with dad or go to kids worship (their choice).

church falls right about little jd's lunchtime. so i took him to the nursing mommy area and took care of him, then took him to the nursery so that i might hear the message. i dropped him off, he seemed fine, and then i headed back to the bathroom (too much coffee) and then headed to the sanctuary. and then i heard him.

not a little cry, but a screaming cry. the kind that tugs at your heart and makes you want to lay eyes on your child immediately.

and i was in the foyer, quite a good distance from the nursery.

so i headed back over with the intent to barge in and take my child back from the offender. (of course, there wasn't any offender, just a crying baby).

alicia met me at the door. it is one of those split ones. she said to me : we can handle it. he is fine. he just needs to settle down.

me: but, alicia, i haven't been with him all week! i cannot stand to hear him cry like that!

alicia: i know (and here comes the hug)

she wrapped me up in her arms, held me so tight i wasn't gonna go anywhere, and said quietly in my ear : if you want to come in here and hold him, of course you can. but i want you to know that we can take care of him and that he will settle down soon. i remember what it was like to have to work and not see your children for long periods of time. i had to do it for a season, too. it is ok.

and she held me until i was able to stop my tears and jd's stopped, too. then, and only then, did she let me go.

and i headed back to the sanctuary (after another trip to the bathroom to fix my face) and enjoyed the service with my husband and 5 year old and even got to take communion.

it was a real HUG. one that didn't think about my personal space, one that didn't think about whether or not i am a hugger, one that showed me alicia truly cared about my emotional state right then and there.

a much needed hug.

i went back to work this past week and had to spend three long days away from my home, my children and my husband. every week i will be spending 3 long days away from them. the first time i have had to work full-time since having tic tac almost 8 years ago.

it is a hard adjustment for me. alicia knew that. and she hugged me.

that simple act was exactly what i needed to get through that moment, and it even carried me through the rest of the day.

i haven't been counting too many blessings lately, cuz things are still so hectic being in boxes and such. but i hope to take a few moments and write some of them down soon. because i know that perspective will help in the midst of this new season of my life.

for now, i just list one gift:

#109. a hug from alicia

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Monday, September 6, 2010

when 20 men show up at your door...

holy experience

that is what happened this morning.

it could have been more, but i am thinking it was at least 20!

i had a post of gifts all ready to go this morning. even had it categorized by the days of the week :)

but then, this morning happened, and i could not post that list.

because what happened this morning was such a HUGE gift to my family i had to write about it.

see, we are moving. out of state.

and we got these moving 'pods' delivered last friday, and they have been sitting empty while we tried to scrounge up some help to load the big furniture into them.

we had sent out emails, even put an event on facebook...only 2 people were confirmed for this morning, and yesterday one man said, send me an email so i don't forget.

i realized when we got home from church i didn't have his email.

so we spent our afternoon and evening yesterday packing, sorting, and generally causing more chaos than order.

8 am...there was a knock on the door.

i kid you not...8 guys walked in. football type guys. big burly guys who can lift a LOT of stuff.

they swarmed.

more came.

they swarmed some more.

i was marking boxes and furniture with blue tape so they would know what to pack in this load. (we have 4 more 'pods' coming on thursday.)

even more came. i had to run to keep up with them.

at some point we had over 20 men in our house packing, wrapping, putting stuff in a pod, organizing.

my house looks like a cyclone hit it.


all four pods were packed in under 2 hours.


what an incredible gift to us! we thought the job would take all day and we were worried over how we were going to get all the heavy stuff down our very steep stairs.

so my gifts this week are the 20 or so guys who swarmed my house and packed my pods and gave of their holiday.

most of them didn't even know us. but, GOD knows us.

and they just came because they wanted to serve us.


GOD is good ALL the time, isn't he??

gifts 88-108. i can claim each guy, right??

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Sunday, August 29, 2010

on my own...

my hubby left this morning for a business trip. he only does these kinds of trips a few times/year. but i always miss him terribly when he is gone.

i don't know about you, but my mind often turns to the worst possible scenario. in my mind i play out what would happen if something dreadful happened to him on the trip. like getting in a car accident, or even worse, dying. i start imagining how i would handle the news, how i would tell the kids, how i would manage, who i would call first, etc.

morbid, i know.

and full of fear.

i know that i am not to fear what can happen on this earth. that the perfect love of God casts out all fear.

i know this to be true.

but that doesn't stop my mind from racing. esp at night when the house is quiet. and i cannot get to sleep because my mate who has shared my bed for nearly 11 years now isn't there.

when we first got married, i had a hard time sleeping with him next to me.

now i cannot sleep when he is gone.

i love that we have become closer over the years. that our marriage has grown stronger instead of growing brittle like more than 50% of marriages these days.

that the word 'divorce' is not a part of our vocabulary, and that we have decided it never will be.

that he has, over time, become my best friend.

that i shed several tears over his parting this morning. when we first got married, i didn't. not because i wouldn't miss him, but just because i wasn't that sentimental. now, he leaves, and i ache.

i love his sense of humor. i don't get it most of the time, and i usually pretend annoyance with it, but really, i love it (shhhh. don't tell him!)

i love that he plays his guitar for the kids and makes up 'monster truck' songs for them to go crazy with.

i love that he writes songs that reflect where he is at in his walk with God.

i don't tell him about the little things i love... i hope i get a chance to and that nothing happens to him on this trip.

i love you, honey.

gifts #79-87

holy experience

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Tuesday's Torment

right now i am being tormented by tape.

tape and boxes.

and stuff.

how did we accumulate so much stuff?

we have lived in this house for two years. and when we moved, we lost 600 square feet. (i am gaining it back when we move back to CO... yippeee!!)

we are discovering boxes in the garage that never got opened! how is that possible?

i am tempted to throw away the contents without even looking into them. i mean, really. i haven't needed their contents in 2 years. what could possibly be in them that i want?

but, we are going to go through them and sort, throw away, give away, or re-pack.

is there irony in this or is it just me?

Monday, August 23, 2010

1000 gifts

my MIL was here for a few weeks. she split her time between us and her sister and mom. i have written in the past about how much of a trial it is to have her here. how uncomfortable it is for me to share our small space with her. not that she isn't a very nice person. and the kids adore her. she and i just have never "clicked" and there was an incident a few years ago where i felt she overstepped some bounds and i have been VERY cautious in sharing anything with her since then. i guess i just have issues.

this visit was no less stressful for me. the times when she was here in the house were stressful for me as i watched every word that came out of my mouth. every time i disciplined the children i felt her eyes on me. it was very intimidating. i needed to find some good in her visit, to put it into perspective. and although i haven't been very faithful with my gift counting, i thought it fitting to restart my list by finding things to be grateful for in my MIL.

68. my MIL prays for each of my children specifically, by name, and on a constant basis.

69. my MIL prays for my husband and me, probably more that i will even know this side of eternity.

70. my children adore it when she reads to them. bedtime becomes a little more manageable with grandma reading bedtime stories.

71. grandma lets the kids climb on her. (i don't)

72. my MIL is a sweet soul who loves the Lord.

73. i am pretty sure she loves me even though our relationship is strained.

74. for the first time since i have known her, i actually cried when she left this time. i felt bad that she couldn't stay longer. i felt her pain as she cried her way out the door, saying "so-long" instead of "good-bye."

75. she is a daughter of the King. and HE loves her.

76. and, yes, i love her. even though we don't mesh perfectly.

77. she is a faithful intercessor on our behalf.

78. she supports our efforts to homeschool (as opposed to my mom who still sends me articles on public school!)

holy experience

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

avoidance and change

i have been avoiding my blog.

we have so much going on right now, i have not wanted to stop and process it.

everything seems to be coming to a head, and i do NOT want to stop and think.

cuz it hurts.

changes are coming and they are drastic.

change #1. we are relocating. not just changing houses, but across a few states.

i guess i shouldn't complain too much about this one. at least we have a place to go to instead of just losing our home and having to rent (which we couldn't qualify for now anyway) or live with some kind-hearted soul who doesn't mind my four VERY loud kids. we know we have church family here who would open their doors in a heartbeat, but that always proves to strain friendships over time.

we kept our home in colorado, and so we are able to pick up and move back.

this is a good thing for a lot of reasons. we will have a bigger house with a full basement and a huge utility area with an oversized 2 car garage. best thing about the house is the YARD!! the development we live in here has very little yard with NO landscaping. we have huge trees in our other home and a play structure and bushes and, according to the boys, the best part is the snails, slugs and worms that can be found year round :)

at least the kids are excited!

change #2

i have to go back to work full-time. at least for now. the KISA is starting a CFO business, and it will take a while to get it going. although, at least in CO he already has a great network. and it seems like it is all about who you know. he has a good head start there. here it is like being a minnow in a huge ocean with thousands of other minnows all looking for the same food (yes, i know there are lots of problems with that analogy). the competition there is a lot less numerous.

i am at odds with this change #2. i am heartbroken that i will not be at home 24-7 to care for my children. i feel fortunate that my KISA will be home when i am not, but that is still not a replacement for MOMMY. i am grateful that i am an RN and jobs are easier to find (not as easy as it used to be, but it is still easier than most professions). i am hoping to work at the same hospital i did several years ago.

i have laid my desires at the foot of the cross, however, and i am trusting that HE knows more than me, and that HE will bring us through this. we will be stronger on the other side. i will have more faith in HIS provision. my husband will know that i will stick by him, just like our vows said : for richer, for poorer, for better, for worse.

as i sort through more, i will probably post more. forgive the crazy ramblings. if i don't make a whole lot of sense, well, that is because it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.

change #1 brings about a whole host of other problems with it:

  • being nearer to my family (parents and sib)
  • leaving a solid, reformed church with genuine worship
  • leaving an amazing support system that has lifted us up in all ways imaginable
  • new homeschooling laws
  • less homeschooling support
  • a need to be WAY more organized so that our schooling doesn't fall behind
  • a need to be a better housekeeper and meal planner so that life continues smoothly
  • a need to declutter and pack and throw away and give away

and a NEED to grow closer to the Father... i cannot let the busy-ness of this time rob me of what is most important.

i am sure there is so much more, but i cannot wrap my heart around it yet, let alone my head.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

the gift from my Father...

the other day was hard for my 5 year old. he has a temper that steamrolls. he mows down anyone or anything in his path and then it gets even worse as the consequences start. we have had this problem for some time, and have recently devoted it to regular prayer.

i am sure you can picture it. we told him to leave the table where his older sib and daddy were playing a game because he kept bumping the board pieces.

so he started by stomping. that earned him a sit-down on the stool to cool-off. not happening. he sat down on the stool and started making up curse words to spit at us through clenched teeth and grabbed the sides of the stool and started making it jump underneath him and moving it across the floor.

we then sent him to the laundry area to calm down before the rest of his consequence was delivered, and he decided he would pick up the trash can and throw it, then the bathroom door got slammed against the wall, and the bathroom rug was pulled out from underneath the bathroom stool with great force. seriously?

this all occurred in the grand total of 20 seconds, so i think we just watched with our mouths open in shock. it took a little while to register what happened.

we disciplined him and then he had to spend the afternoon in his room. i went up to talk with him, bible in hand, and we read some out of Prov 17 and 18. several of the verses applied and we talked them over. then we prayed and he asked if he could go down and apologize to daddy for his attitude. by all means!! he has the hardest time apologizing without falling down in fear, so i was excited to see him want to 'make it right' without any prompting from me.

fast forward to dinner. as the KISA is praying for dinner, bonobo gets out of his chair and onto the bench. i start to chastise him when i realize what he is doing.

he kneels on the bench, folds his hands, and leans over to put his forehead on the bench.

rewind to our talk on his bedroom floor. he had asked me if this (the position i described above) was a good way to pray. i told him it was, and that it showed humility before our Lord.

fast forward again.

my son wants to be on his knees and face before God while we give thanks for our dinner.

i teared up.

then the tears fell. (the kids were pretty baffled about why i was crying over meatballs)

they are falling now as i write this.

we so worry about our 5 year old's heart before the Lord. he just seems so angry all the time. so rebellious. so defiant. not wanting anyone in authority over him.

and yet. God gave me a glimpse of how He is working in our son's life and heart.

just as we have asked Him to do.

thank you, Lord, for being faithful to answer prayers and showing us in tangible ways how you are working.

Monday, July 12, 2010

taking a break

ok. i decided it was time to take a break from blogging, at least for a little while. i had an "oopsie" occur when posting from snapfish to my homeschooling blog, and it freaked me out a bit. i tried posting a pic from snapfish to the blog and it automatically titled it with my full name! i tried deleting the post, but it is still showing up in readers! i should have just changed the title, and maybe that would have made a difference, but i thought deleting the post would solve the problem.

i know, probably not a huge deal. it isn't like i had a huge following on it. but i started thinking about the possibility of absolute strangers having my full name (and my daughter's name, btw) and it really creeped me out.

so i think i need to take a step back and really evaluate why i am blogging. there is a safety in the anonymity, but then again, there isn't. i mean, i love knowing that someone from across the world wanted to read the words i wrote. there is something very satisfying in that. maybe a little too much pride in it. am i really posting simply to have a record of my thoughts and to share my a-ha moments in Christianity with others? am i sharing my thoughts to encourage others? or am i sharing my thoughts so that i can gain sympathy and share my 'knowledge?' (ha!)

*sigh* i think God has little cleaning house to do in my heart. i fear i have gotten a little ahead of myself in the whole 'blogging' world. i don't know what path God will take me on next in the cyber world, but i know that if i seek Him and His will for me, then it will be the right path!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Polishing a Cornerstone

i am going to be posting this to both my blogs, so i apologize if you follow them both. i felt it appropriate since i was going to be reaping benefits from this study as well as my daughter. definitely manna for the spirit and soul.

i just received my Polished Cornerstones book, and since i didn't want to just jump in and start without some thought, preparation and prayer, my first link-up post is going to be more about what i hope to gain by this study and my very tentative plan of action. consider it an introduction to me as a mom and to my daughter.

i am ginny. a 35 year old woman who has been a christian for 15 years, a wife for 10 and a mom for 7. you can read about the other 3 kiddos in the sidebar, but for this study, i am going to be focusing on my daughter. i call her stinkerbell for the sake of the blogs. she will be 3 in july (yikes!) and is quite a handful. i see a lot of my own character traits (good and bad) in her. we clash a LOT. i think it is because we are so alike.

i was never taught how to be a 'homemaker' in the traditional sense. my upbringing consisted of learning how to do my own laundry, cleaning the house every two weeks, and tidying up here and there. i learned how to cook basics like spaghetti and mac and cheese. but that is about it. hospitality was NEVER modeled in our home. we rarely had people over for dinner or holidays. there also weren't a whole lot of traditions in our home, either. as i came to my marriage i really had no idea what a wife was except a woman who worked full time outside the home and came home to make dinner clean up then sit in front of the TV til bedtime.

i know my mom did more than that... she just never shared any of it with me. i know she managed our home, did the bills, produced meal plans and shopping lists, kept it all running smoothly. i just never, ever had a part in it. i am hoping... no , i am INTENTIONALLY going to include my daughter in those aspects of our home.

so, here the book sits. open to page 11... the Purpose of Polished Cornerstones. i love the idea of raising my daughter with the purpose of growing a godly woman, and hopefully a godly wife and mother. i do not know what God has in store for my rough gem, but i know He knows, and it will be just right for her. i can only pray that i can come alongside her and help her to realize who she is in Christ.

the book says that the 'beginner' projects are for girls ages 4-9, but after browsing through some of the activities, i think we can get started, even though she is 3. i know that i have a lot to learn as a 'homemaker' and i will benefit from doing some of the more advanced projects myself.

our first chapter will be "A Woman Who Memorizes God's Word. " i struggle with memorization and i am hoping to be encouraged and challenged by her ability to memorize chunks of scripture. just this morning she told me "my bible tells me not to complain" :) i love it!

i need to dig a little more into the book before i do any more planning/implementing. i am looking forward to linking with Raising Homemakers in this journey and reading about other mom's and daughters as they pursue godliness.

blessings to you in your day!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

holy experience

52. my 5 year old son bringing me his story Bible to read at night for his bedtime story
53. a 2.9 year old little girl checking out her 'looks' in the mirror
54. a 7 year old with NO CAVITIES at the dentist
55. a dentist who is willing to waive the fees of nitrous oxide for the 7 year olds appt for sealant and scaling
56. key lime poke cake for Father's Day celebration
57. a husband who is doing everything he can to be a good provider for our family
58. the privilege of growing in Christ with my husband
59. discovering that my husband truly is my best friend
60. 4 beautiful children
61. laughter at dinner
62. squeezy hugs
63. crunchy crab
64. the study of the book Revelation
65. early morning nursing sessions with the cutest 2 month old ever
66. noiseless giggles
67. the 'show' put on my the boys for daddy on Father's Day...complete with narrator and curtains in their bedroom on the bunkbeds

God is good.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

confidence or not?

my husband is a bit discouraged right now.

he is starting a business from scratch and he is setting appointments to introduce himself and familiarize our friends (the "warm market") with his services as an accountant.

he feels that he is spinning his wheels, in a sense, because our friends, while well-meaning with their words of encouragement and referrals, have no confidence in his ability to do what he says he can do because they only know him personally.

they know he is an honest man and hard-working, but can he really do what he says he can?

well, yes, he can, or else he would be out there pounding the pavement and getting a job in the corporate world, whenever that happened.

all that being said... i had to ask myself... do i believe he can do what he says he can?

well, of course i do!

or do i?

at 3 am as i was nursing little j.d. i realized that, although i do believe in his abilities, i certainly don't act like i do.

my actions, words, even thoughts do not reflect a belief in his abilities.

(don't worry. i have confessed this to him, so it is not coming as a surprise)

i have been less than enthusiastic in my words to him.

i have even cut him off a time or two (or three *gulp*) as i listen with glazed over eyes at his excitement over a new computer program, or method of billing, or his advertising, or his networking, because something else (or someone else) is more "pressing."

to be honest, most of what he says goes right over my head, as i am not a numbers person and i don't understand a word of it!

no wonder he is discouraged! he isn't feeling the respect of his wife as he endeavors to make a living so i can stay home with our children!


how often do i do this to my Heavenly Father?

double ouch.

i read His Word, knowing He has promised me eternal life if i just believe in the Resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ.

but do i believe?

do i live my life as if this were true?

do my words, actions, and yes, even thoughts, reflect my belief in what He has promised me?


seems like i have another confession to make.

Monday, June 14, 2010

digging out the gifts

we have had a rough few months. 2010, well, it has been challenging.

yesterday at church, a friend of mine gifted us with a check. i know they are not in any position to give money to us, as they are living off student loans right now. just as we are living off an equity line of credit.

but she saw my facebook post about all the 'stuff' that has happened to us over the last week, and she said that she and her husband felt led by God to give to us. it was truly a sacrificial gift.

i drove home in tears at their generosity.

i feel very undeserving of their generosity. why should they give to us when every dollar they spend is debt?

i feel guilty for accepting their gift. i feel guilty for accepting the many gifts that have come our way these past few months.

God has a way of bringing me to my knees, especially when i have been overly secure in my own abilities.

this week i am going to recount some of the gifts that have come to us through our circumstances.

40. the hot water heater broke this weekend. GIFT: our children had a blast getting hosed down outside in lieu of a bath. the laughter that erupted from them was priceless!

41. GIFT: the unexpected. sacrificial offering of a friend to help with the cost of replacing said hot water heater.

42. the buckle of stinkerbell's car seat broke on friday night, leaving me to wonder how we could drive anywhere safely. GIFT: we had an old car seat in the garage that i was able to take the buckle from and fit it onto her carseat while we wait for the replacement buckle.

43. tic tac got a butterscotch candy lodged in his throat on saturday night and was scared (truly, truly frightened) that he was going to die. it was a very scary scene, and i was definitely concerned that it might indeed go down the wrong way if he got too worked up. GIFT: he was able to stay calm, and in the end, he vomited up all of his dinner and said butterscotch candy all over the couch :) (strange to find a gift in the vomit, i know, but it was such a relief to see that candy!).

44. the KISA had to have his struts replaced this week. GIFT: he can now drive his car wherever he needs to without stranding me by taking the minivan.

45. our church has a conference in california in a few weeks, and we were not going to be able to attend because it was cost-prohibitive. GIFT: the church is going to assist us financially and we will be able to go!

46. we have also had several small gifts along the way that have helped out tremendously: from my bible study friends, the KISA's father, gift cards to various stores, 2 HUGE boxes of diapers, 3 large gift baskets from our local VA women's center, and i am sure a few others that escape me at the moment.

47. the KISA lost his job the week before j.d. was born. GIFT: he has been home and has helped me out tremendously with all 4 kids. otherwise, i think we would be down to 2 kids :)

48. the KISA is starting a business from home. GIFT: he has had his first couple of clients in the past few weeks. i am so grateful to God for letting him see success!

49. the toilet in the upstairs bathroom decided to develop a leak right into my kitchen! requiring a plumber on a SUNDAY! GIFT: our friend's dad is a plumber and he was able to point us to someone who would be willing to come out on a sunday without charging us an exorbitant amount.

50. we seem to be on everyone's prayer list. GIFT: we have seen amazing things as a result of the prayers of our many friends. i have never felt so loved and encouraged as i have these past few months. the prayer cover is tangible... and i have never experienced that. this alone is worth all the hardship.

51. GIFT: we have had to let go of our pride time and again to accept offers of help and money. it is always a gift to let go of my self.

there have been other disheartening events in our lives recently, but i think i will leave it at that. the bottom line is that GOD is good ALL the time. HEis in EVERY detail of my life. if i look for it, i can see HIM working in each moment, big or small, serious or silly. HE is the provider, not me and not my KISA.

HE continues to care for me and provide for me and my family and make sure that our essentials are taken care of.

because HE IS GOD. and i am His child.


holy experience

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Homemaking, not to be feared!!

i am excited for the launch of Raising Homemakers! i think i am going to learn a lot from this site. even though stinkerbell is coming up on 3 years old, i know i could be doing more to encourage her growth as a woman of Christ! check out the site if you have any daughters!!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

gifts from God's Word

this week i have been reading more in my bible. it has been a very long time since i have read just to soak in His Words. i read during the school year because i attend a great bible study and i like to be able to participate in our discussions every week (if you don't answer a question in the study at home, you cannot weigh in during our core groups that week).

my husband and i have purposed to pray more for our children (i intend to blog more on that soon) and so different scripture verses have struck a chord as i think about praying scripture over them. the gift of God's Word spoken to me through the bible is a treasure that i am just coming to appreciate after 16 years of Christianity. (prayer is another or those treasures... although i really don't get it yet.) we are reading through "Praying the Bible for Your Children" by David and Heather Kopp and below are a few of the things we have prayed this week.

32. thank you, Lord for gifting me with four beautiful children, created by You to glorify You. (Psalm 139:13 )

33. thank you, God, for hearing us when we pray (Deut 4:7)

34. when i am afraid for my children, my first impulse is to run to You. All our hopes are in Your hands. (Psalm 91:9-11)

35. please call my children to You by name as You called Samuel and as You have called me. (Is 43:1)

36. thank You that You promise to knock patiently on the door of each heart in this family. (Rev 3:20)

and some other verses that have really spoken to me through my devotional time:

37. Eccl 5:20 For he will not much remember the days of his life because God keeps him occupied with joy in his heart. i desire to be occupied with joy in my heart, not the troubles of the day.

38. Eccl 7:14a In the day of prosperity be joyful, and in the day of adversity consider: God has made the one as well as the other.

39. 1 Pet 2:19-21 For this is a gracious thing, when, mindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly. For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.

to read more about the gratitude community and counting the gifts from God, click on the button below.

holy experience

Sunday, May 23, 2010

gifts from God

holy experience

i have been having a hard time focusing on the gifts these last two weeks. i am not really sure why, but the tone in our home has been fairly negative, and it has really worn on everyone. our 5 year old has had an early bedtime too many times to count, which means we all have a VERY early morning. the baby has had a difficult time sleeping in the daytime, which has made for a very cranky baby as well a cranky mommy. school has been a struggle and everyone seems to be snapping at each other. grrrr.

but, i have managed to get a few snapshots of some blessings these last two weeks, so i will present my list in pictures this week. and i will pray that i am more conscious of the gifts, whether big or small, in the coming days.


photo descriptions:

bonobo with two fuzzy caterpillars found under the trash can in our yard

stinkerbell with her caterpillar

bonobo and stinkerbell making cross crafts given to us by tic tacs bible study teacher

little john doe in his ducky outfit that each of the boys have worn

grandpa and grandma visiting from california for 2 days

daddy reading to tic tac :)

swimming fun for tic tac at grandpa's hotel pool

Friday, May 7, 2010

more gifts to count

i know it is tuesday, but yesterday was too crazy to post. i also wanted to get the pictures up to accompany the gifts i saw from God this past week. i have enjoyed looking for His blessings, and i know there were a lot more, but i had trouble recalling them as i wrote this. i think i am going to have to keep track daily on paper and then write the post on sunday :) maybe that will work! hope you all had a very blessed week and saw God working in all the big and little things in your lives.

11. early morning shows put on by our two oldest boys as they make tents and houses out of their bedding

12. giggles from a little girl as we play 'tickle me!' before bed

13. the desire of a 7 year old boy to help his 2.9 year old sister to play dress-up with princess clothes.

14. 3 children laughing and dancing uninhibited in the living room in tu-tus and poodle skirts

15. renters who are going to be vacating our home in colorado at the end of may...we might actually be able to stage it to sell it now

16. a husband who has been home while launching his business...his extra hands have been invaluable

17. a 7 year old son who has FINALLY conquered the mountain of staying dry at night!

18. a trip to IKEA to buy new bedding to celebrate #17

19. sweet kisses from an older brother

20. the joy of a little girl as she finally blows bubbles from a wand

21. a surprise visit from a childhood friend as they visited our town on business

22. beautiful desert blooms

23. a walk in a beautiful desert park and a picnic to follow
a great week to be had by all!!

Monday, May 3, 2010

finding things to be thankful for...

holy experience

heather has been counting her blessings for a while now. i have said before that she inspires me, and she has done it again. i have been reading her blessings and have been amazed at how she sees God in everything around her.

lately, our family has been going through a lot of trials. i have found myself focusing on the details of life and how to make things 'work' instead of focusing on the sovereign will of God. nothing that has happened to us is a shocker to God. He is in control, not me, and i think if i join in counting 1000 of God's gifts to me, then i hope to refocus on Him, and not my circumstances.

so...here goes...

1. i am grateful for God. this may be a no-brainer, but i think it should be foremost on my list to remind me of just how important He is (supposed to be) to my life.

2. i am thankful that my relationship with Christ is not just a lifestyle commitment, but that He is essential to my eternity.

3. i am grateful for my husband and his very patient love for me. i can be hard to live with :)

4. i am grateful for each of my children (can i number each of them?). especially the newest member who is only 3 weeks old :)

5. i am grateful that when my minivan died yesterday on a major thoroughfare i was able to move out of traffic.

6. i am grateful that when it died, a friend who lived close by willingly loaded up her 3 little ones and then put in an extra car seat for my son who was in the car with me and came to rescue us.

7. i am really grateful that the van suffered from a warranty-covered malfunction and that is was fixed quickly without the need for a rental car.

8. i am grateful for the sweet, nuzzling nose of a newborn on my cheek when he is hungry.

9. i am grateful for 3 hours of consecutive sleep last night.

and finally:

10. i am grateful for the challenge to be thankful for all things, large or small.

i am looking forward to looking to the good in things, even when they seem bleak at the outset. surely, there can be something good to be found in all things.

(i know it is tuesday, but i wanted to get started! i hope to do this on mondays from now on)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Dear Mom...

i plugged in some stuff into a search engine the other day and realized that THIS blog will pop up quite readily. i never really thought about it before, but this might actually pose a problem. i have 3 blogs. one for family. one for homeschooling. and one for me. the family one is even on a different platform. i did this so my family wouldn't have any knowledge of THIS blog. because i wanted the freedom to write whatever i wanted without worrying about censoring it from prying family eyes. namely that of my mom, sister and MIL. ummm. i guess if they were curious, they could find this pretty easily. scary thought. i don't think i have slammed them, per se, but i know i haven't minced words. i thought about cleaning up the blog some and deleting posts, but then...why should i? i shouldn't be ashamed of anything i have thought or written, as long as i have been honest and fair in my assessments, right? i did a little back reading and discovered that most of the things i have said are things i wish i could say face-to-face.

so, mom, sis and ma-in-law...if you are offended by what i have written, i am sorry that you see it that way. i don't mean to hurt you by what i have said. i am not going to apologize for my thoughts, however. they are true to how i feel. one day i may even get the courage to speak them to you directly.

i hope this has remained a family-free blog, but if it hasn't, well. that is just the way it goes. i do not plan to change what i write or how i write it. i want to be able to talk about my relationship with Christ and my trials without watering anything down. that is what i started this blog for. i hope that in the coming months, that my love for Christ is what shines through. i want to share what He is doing in our lives (quite a bit, lately) and how we are getting through it. He is working in us and doing a lot of refining right now, and even though it is painful, we are trying to persevere with faith. it is sometimes a minute by minute walk.

and, mom, sis and MIL...if you are reading this, i hope you take it at face value and don't pass any judgments on me for thinking out loud. i love you regardless. and i hope you love me despite me.

Monday, April 19, 2010

delicious fruit salad

i used to make an apple salad with mayonnaise that i LOVED, but i didn't make it very often because the mayo is just not good for you. i found a recipe for a lighter version, and made it the other day for a side during lunch. i found it on Menus4Moms.com, which i have found to be a great resource for meal plans when i am stuck.

Apple, Grape and Walnut salad

  • 3 sliced and cored Granny Smith apples
  • 1 bunch red grapes, pulled from the stems
  • chopped walnuts
  • 8 oz. vanilla yogurt
  • 3 oz. cream cheese, softened
Mix the cream cheese and yogurt until well blended (we used our bullet blender). put fruit, etc in a bowl and mix in the yogurt blend. refrigerate :)

i didn't have any grapes the second time i made it, so we added raisins instead. another good add-in would be celery or pineapple chunks.

yummy!! and so much better for me :)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

He's here!!!

ahhhh...the moment we were waiting for finally arrived :) our precious little man entered the world in true troublemaker fashion!

vital stats:

8 pounds 14 ounces (!)
20 inches
complications: clavicle fracture from a shoulder dystocia

can i just tell you how glad i was to have had my first/only epidural with this little man? the shoulder sticking under my pubic bone would have been sheer torture without it! never, never thought i would be loving the epidural so much!

pictures will be coming soon, i promise. as soon as i get to feeling a little better, that is! i still have elephant ankles and a sciatica from the depths, but otherwise we are doing superbly :)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

warning: whining about to commence

if you don't want to read a post from a whiney pregnant woman, read no further.


i am tired of being pregnant. this pregnancy has really taken its toll on me.

i am irritable. i am impatient. my children look at me as if i have grown 3 heads and am going to eat them alive.

i just might.

i had a dr. appt yesterday and, of course, my cervix is unchanged. so, she kindly stripped the membranes.

it started the contractions in earnest a few hours later. first they were 6 minutes apart, and within a few hours we were headed to the hospital with contractions at 3 minutes apart and painful. once we get there, they confirmed the contractions, but the cervix wasn't going anywhere.

so i walked around for an hour.

lovely hospital gowns (one on front and one on back, ya know, to cover up the wide load). flip flops, and a tour of the lovely hospital grounds.

the KISA ate a cheeseburger and sweet potato fries while i did a circuit around a big copper tree.
is it a bad thing that i rejoiced when he accidentally threw away his cookies with the trash? esp since i was only allowed ice chips?

back up to L&D for another check. no change.

have to walk outside for another hour. thank goodness the weather is nice here.

i haven't walked this much since before i was pregnant!

back upstairs. painful contractions 2 minutes apart, can't walk through them.

no change.

call the doctor.

go home.

go home? when do i come back?

"when your contractions are close together and painful."

you mean, like they are right now???????

oh, well. at least i got to lay in my own bed to get through them. and eat.

eating was nice.

i am tired of the contractions. they are tiresome. they wake me up frequently. i don't need any practice for after the baby comes. i need sleep.

i am discouraged.

i am whiney.

i am impatient.

i may just eat one of my children today.

Monday, March 29, 2010

how can anyone doubt God?

when i see an image like this, it amazes me that anyone can deny the existence of a CREATOR.

these images of our little John Doe at 36 weeks just blow me away and make me want to meet him even more!! he has hung in there a lot longer than anyone predicted, and even though i am 37 weeks today, i am feeling overdue! silly, i know :)

God is awesome!!! i am so grateful for this precious little life growing inside me. whenever i get frustrated with how LOOOOONNNNNGGGG i have been pregnant, i can look at this and know that God has formed this little one exactly how He wants him and he will be born on his appointed day :)

Monday, March 15, 2010

guess where i was this weekend?

in false labor, that's where!

our lovely little boy decided he wanted a trial run, and had us headed into our local labor and delivery for a 24 hour stint of fetal monitoring, cervical checks, IV fluids, and some pretty convincing contractions. thankfully, everything stalled out in the early morning and we were sent home sunday afternoon.

i am at 3 cm and 60% effaced, and just waiting. we are glad he decided to take it east and NOT come yet, as he just isn't done growing yet! i know that 34 weekers do really well, but all the NICU nurses and Perinataologist talk really has a way of sobering you up. when this little one is born, the last thing i want is for him to have to spend time in the neonatal unit on oxygen and receiving supplemental feeding to help keep his blood sugar stable.

so....we wait :) hopefully, expectantly, for God's perfect timing!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Bad hair day

don't you think this should be on a poster somewhere? the look on her face is just so darn classic!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

from bedrest to Bedrest

it is a subtle difference really. only in the first letter.

i was put on bedrest last week. i interpreted this as "rest as much as possible over the next few weeks and if you have a lot of contractions, try to lay down."

i did ok at that. the KISA was still home from work on leave, and i was able, for the most part, to only pitch in (he probably thinks differently, but, hey. i was trying to be good!)

i spent most of the day on the couch, only getting up when the kids needed to be broken up from a fight, or when the KISA had to run an errand, or when the stinkerbell needed a diaper change...

you see what i mean by "i interpreted?"

today, however, the bedrest took on a capital "B"

my OB was very, very clear with me this morning. under no circumstance am i to be up.


this little baby needs at least 2 more weeks to gestate. anything less than that is less than optimal.

apparently, little boys develop more slowly in the womb than do little girls (should i be surprised by this?)

apparently, i have dropped significantly in the last week.

she wouldn't even check me for fear of "stirring things up."

she even made direct eye contact with me as she said : "You will be on strict bedrest."

i said "i am doing my best."

she said. and i quote. "Do better than your best."

message received. loud and clear.

and, so, i am down. for the count. for the count-down to 35 weeks.

13 more days.

i will do anything for this little guy.

who doesn't have a name yet.

how am i going to do this?

only with God's help, and the help of some amazing women. especially this one.

she is doing what i have trouble doing for myself and organizing the help i need for the next two weeks. because i was trying to just make do with what we had....i didn't want to bother anyone too much.

she is being my voice, and i spent the afternoon in tears as i reflected on God's goodness reflected in her as she poured out her heart in efforts to meet our needs.

thank you does not seem like enough.

she makes me want to be more like Christ. i cannot imagine a better quality in a friend.

Friday, February 26, 2010

God's protection

well. it is done. the month-long drama that has pretty much consumed our household is complete.

a little over four weeks ago, my husband came home from work in the middle of the day pending an HR investigation. after a week, we were finally enlightened as to the nature of the allegations, and they were as we had suspected. i cannot go into major specifics, but it involved sharing his faith. needless to say, we were floored.

through all of this, we have seen God's hand over us time and time again.

first, the KISA was sent home on paid administrative leave. translation: staycation at full rate.

second, our church body rallied around us like nobody's business and covered us in prayer.

third, i was able to take much needed breaks throughout his time home so that my pregnant body could rest.

fourth, and the biggest: God has provided a new job for my husband that takes us in an entirely new career direction. he is almost done with his Master's degree in Accountancy, and he has been trying to figure out for a while how to break into the field without any accounting experience. his job starts on monday.

we know it is a God thing for many reasons. for one thing, he doesn't have any experience. most of these firms hire young, newly graduated kids looking for internships (which we could never do with how big a pay cut it would be).

another thing is that although he felt he did well during the interview portion of the morning, he totally bombed the computer testing. since he hadn't been involved in accounting, he was totally unfamiliar with the software. he really thought as he left that he would never get the job. but, he did.

the best part of all of this? God is leaving no room for us to be bitter. not toward his former employer, not toward his accuser, nothing. we will never know what the resolution of the investigation would have been because he resigned before it was completed. God is very gracious. i am so grateful to Him for taking this from us before we could grow vengeful or second guess our actions. i can pray for his accuser without any hard feelings or sorrow over our situation.

God is good. He always has been, He always will be. there is no doubt in my mind that God knows how human i really am and how easy it would have been for me to lay blame and be angry. His protection always amazes me.

and i am so glad i get to see it.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

it doesn't get any better than this...

in light of my last few posts, that probably seems like we are on the upswing, right?

well, sort of.

lots of things have happened this week. i cannot quite reveal all of the details until one final piece falls into place tomorrow, but i can say that God has been revealing Himself to us in so many ways. like my friend cyndi would say, we are getting to see 'Jesus with skin on' up close and personal.

the little boy in the womb has decided he wants to bring some excitement to our lives. if you call excitement going in to the doctor's office for a 32 week check-up only to be sent directly to the hospital for monitoring and the first of two steroid shots to help baby boy's lungs develop just a teeny bit faster than they would on their own. ripened cervix and dilated to 1-2 cm were not phrases i wanted to hear. but, hey. a little excitement never hurt anyone, right?

so now we are on 'bedrest.' i dread that word. it was hard when i had a 4 and 2 year old when i was pregnant with stinkerbell. and it is even harder with a 7, 4, and 2 year old. thankfully, due to circumstances beyond our control, my hubby has been home for the last 4 weeks and has been able to be the 'mommy' in many ways and significantly lessen my workload.

not his chosen profession, but he does amazingly well at it! i am convinced that if he hadn't been home, the bedrest thing would have happened waaaaay before this.

last time, i wasn't so gracious with asking for help. i was pretty stand-offish, and i am ashamed to admit that. i wasn't quite ready to be humbled and ask for help, even though i desperately needed it. the KISA was 4 hours away training for a new job the monday after i was put on bedrest. we had to have people in the house 24-7. i was very prideful, and usually when pride is involved, grace is not. i hope i have learned my lessons (probably not, but i think i did learn a little). i look back on those days with a lot of regret. thankfully, my friends just stepped up and ran with scheduling so i didn't have to worry about the details. i am not sure what i would have done without them (thanks, tammy and karen!).

regret that i wasn't more thankful toward those who so willingly served us and put up with my moodiness.

regret that i didn't accept more of the help that was offered and limiting the abilities of others to show Christ to us.

regret that i didn't see God actively working in our lives in the midst of it. i can look back now and recount the blessings, but i missed out while it was happening.

so now...what am i doing? advertising our needs :) even though i am a much better giver than receiver, i know that when i find out about a need too late to help with i am always saddened with the thought that i wasn't able to help.

within hours of my first e-mail/facebook post i had an overflowing inbox. the tears coursed down my face as i opened each email and saw the outpouring of prayers, offers of meals, and help with childcare. each day has brought new emails, phone calls and offers of help. i am truly blown away.

God is blessing us in so many ways. more than i can share here yet. but when i tell you the rest of the story, you will be amazed by God's goodness and protection.

He has never, ever let us down.

and He never will.