Friday, May 29, 2009

Done! (almost)

Today I packed my last lunch for second grade. It was a happy moment - although not fully celebrated for a few hours until I was awake enough to realize that the moment actually occurred. Now remember, the celebration did NOT mark the end of second grade - no way, Jose. We still have 4 half-days to wade through before the second grade year is officially over. I guess the lunch people just get to start summer vacation a bit earlier this year.

I am so not into these last 4 days. I was annoyed by the concept of 1/2 days well before the note went home about the 1/2 days. But then, the note arrived - describing in detail what the precious children will be doing. Let me summarize:

Monday: 8:15 start work on second grade book, PE, recess,
classroom games, dismiss at 11:15
Tuesday: 8:15 class breakfast with parents and
students. Parents may leave with student when they are
Wednesday: 8:15 the entire elementary will assemble to
view a movie, classroom games, dismiss at 11:15
Thursday: 8:15 Honor Roll Chapel dismiss at 9:30. Why are we even bothering?
Now, I know that the state requires 180 days of instruction. But, I pay good money for Brother to attend private school. They aren't required any number of days. Why are they wasting my time?

Anyways ... Second grade has been a challenge for me. I've had some issues with the school and with Brother's teacher this year. I will be glad to check this year off our list and move on to something and someplace new. However, I have to give the teacher credit for Brother did learn some amazing things this year. He reads proficiently and has even discovered that he enjoys reading. He learned cursive and has the most beautiful handwriting (and I'm not exaggerating a bit)! He learned to carry for addition, borrow for subtraction, and began learning multiplication and division. He studied the life of Moses and memorized the 10 commandments and the beatitudes. He learned to write stories and enjoys writing in a journal. He learned to work with his classmates, solve everyday problems, and to be responsible for himself. It has been a busy year. It is such a bittersweet moment for this sentimental mom.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's Thursday, but I Didn't Tell you about Monday

As you know, Monday was Memorial Day. As a teenager, Memorial Day was one of my favorite holidays because my friend's family had a pool, and Memorial Day was "opening day." I would get up early, get ready, and head over to the Murphy house for a day of swimming, snacking, and all around fun. The thing I liked about getting to the Murphy house early was that her family had a flag raising ceremony to celebrate the true meaning of Memorial Day. We would all congregate outside and hang a flag on the garage. Then we would say the Pledge of Allegiance, sing "God Bless America", and pray for our country. It was a special time.

Well, this past Memorial Day didn't have a flag ceremony for us, but it did involve a day full of family and friends. To begin with, we went out for breakfast (really brunch) as a family. I don't know about you, but I love to eat breakfast out. I know it is eggs, but they taste better when I don't have to do the cooking and clean-up.

Later in the afternoon, we went over to our friend's house for swimming and bbq. I was a bit nervous about the swim party because it was with families from our church - and some of them we hadn't seen since we left. I was afraid it would be awkward. Instead, it was just what my heart needed - a reminder of the love from this church family. We had good food and good fun.

Brother was is heaven with the swimming - I didn't even capture his photo. Sister was so cute because she was able to play with her "best friend." The girls are 6 months apart and LOVE each other. Even through they haven't played together for a couple of months, Sister constantly "talks" to her friend on her play phone. They were so excited to be together again. They are 2 peas in a pod and it is so sweet to see their friendship forming at such a young age. My prayer is that our moving won't hinder Sister in making friendships in the future.

So, I'm thankful. Thankful for my family. Thankful for our friends. Thankful for a day to remember the men and women who gave their lives for the safety of my country.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Stop the World ... I want OFF!

I'm tired of it! I'm done! I've had my fill of bad news. I'm tired of words like cancer ... affair ... divorce ... abuse ... death ... miscarriage ... infertility ... diagnosis ... foreclosure ... lay-off. If I were in a cute-sy mood, I'm sure I could come up with the ABC's of words I have come to hate hearing.

I know that God is at work in and around us, but I am daily reminded that we also oppose an enemy who seeks to steal, kill, and destroy each of us. I believe that these evil things aren't more prevalent in our society. I believe that with the ever-shrinking internet world, we just have more access to the bad news - as people share their hurts and needs with one another. And, please do not her me wrong - I enjoy the privilege of praying for those who I have come to know their stories. I am just weary from all the suffering around me.

I've been away from the blogosphere for the past few days. I needed some time to re-group and re-prioritize my life. (It seems to be a common conviction in my circles these days.) I took advantage of the time to meditate in God's word. Here are some truths I reflected upon:
"Come to me, all of you who are tired and are carrying heavy loads. I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28 (New International Reader's Version)

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." Hebrews 13:8

"As his children, we will receive all that he has for us. We will share what Christ receives. But we must share in his sufferings if we want to share in his glory. What we are suffering now is nothing compared with the glory that will be shown in us. Everything God created looks forward to the time when his children will appear in their full and final glory." Romans 8:17-19 (New International Reader's Version)

While it may feel that the devil is claiming victory around me, I remember that God was victor long ago, and He remains victorious today. Today I will rest in Christ. I will know that He is in control of the circumstances surrounding me. I will trust that the same God who heard the groans of the Israelites and showed concern for them has a plan and is working it out today. I will share in Christ's suffering so I can share in His glory as well. I know that God will be glorified as He works in and around me, so I will keep a watchful eye.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day

Dear Heavenly Father,
As we remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom, we think of how they have followed in the footsteps of your son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Please hold our service men and women in your strong arms. Cover them with your sheltering grace and presence as they stand in the gap for our protection.
We also remember the families of our troops, and ask for your unique blessings to fill their homes and your peace, provision and strength to fill their lives.
May the members of our armed forces be filled with courage to face each day and may they trust in the Lord's mighty power to accomplish each task. Let our military brothers and sisters feel our love and support. In the name of Jesus. Amen (Prayer by Mary Fairchild)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Lego Mania!

You know how I mentioned going to Legoland? Well, today we journeyed to the next best place - the new Lego store at the mall. It is a Lego wonderland! They have so many kits, bricks, and stuff that I never even knew existed. I could have spent hours in there, looking at all the neat Lego stuff. They even have a whole wall of loose bricks, so you can "pick a brick" of your choice. They say that the Lego name is from the Danish phrase leg godt, which means "play well". I, however, learned that the true meaning is from the English let go, as in "let go of all your money."

Inside the store, they had 2 large builds - one of R2-D2 and the other of Indiana Jones. I am so very impressed with the detail - even from just Lego bricks. The salesman mentioned that they are building a large Yoda for the opening of the other Dallas store. (We, of course, got details of the build time, so we can get in on the fun.) Around the store, they has tons of other smaller builds -- so cool!
Sister was thrilled to find PINK Lego bricks. She jumped up and down and insisted on getting some. She informed Brother that they were for her room.
Brother bought the Coast Guard Patrol Boat and Tower. He came immediately home to work on it. I'm about to believe it is worth the money if it keeps him quiet and occupied for a few hours.

All in all, I'd say it was a trip that made for happy mama, happy brother, and happy sister. Hubby was along with us, but he doesn't enjoy reading directions, so he doesn't understand the thrill of Lego bricks. In the end, I know he will get on board with the Lego love and appreciate the quiet.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Reading Room

I cannot believe that the end of the week is finally here. I haven't gotten much accomplished, but I am ready for a long weekend. We don't have any big plans. We are still waiting for the one to call us back. It will be nice to hang out as a family - and not have to hassle with school on Monday.

Much of my time this past week has been taken by the books I am reading. I love to read, but when I start, it will consume me. Reading is my escape. I told a friend at Bible Study the other day, "My life has been pretty stinky these days, so I'm choosing to be a pioneer woman." Here is the book that got me started:

My friend loaned it to me. She read the series - yes, I said series - while she was in Russia, adopting her little boy. She must not consume books like I do because she was there for a month, but I finished this first book in 2 days. My intention was to wait before starting the next, but I couldn't. So, I moved ahead with the next book.
This one is just as good, so I finished it in another 2 days. Luckily for my household, it is just a trilogy, so I have started the 3rd and final book.

I've practiced more self-control with this last book, so I still have about 1/3 of the book to go. (It's been 4 days) Now that re-run season has started, I will probably finish it tonight. I have told myself that I MUST put away the laundry before I can lie down to read.

If you are a reader, I'd recommend these. They are in no way deep literature - just little escapes into another time and another place. They are Christian based, so it is nice to learn a bit about the Lord while reading. I have enjoyed the luxury of reading this past week. I hope you will take some time to treat yourself to something you enjoy. If you do, I'd love to hear about it. Also, what do you like to read?

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Oh Brother!!!

My 8 year-old son is like a little adult, and knows more about stuff than he should. His mind is like a sponge – he just needs to hear something once, and it is forever in his memory. It is one of those things that is endearing, but annoying all at the same time. Well, last night was one of those times. Here’s the set up:

We have been having trouble with the kids coming out of their rooms after they have been tucked in bed for the night – with Sister being the main offender. I cannot tell you how many excuses she has to come out of her room, but I must say that my favorite was, “the dogs (all stuffed – THAT PRESLEY!) are being noisy and I can’t sleep.”

Anyway, so last night when I went into her room to say prayers, give kisses, etc, I told her – loud enough so Brother could hear me across the hall – “It’s time for little people to go to bed and stay in bed so the parents can have special adult time.” Now, you may see where this is going, but I was simply meaning quiet, kid-free time with my hubby, Blue Bell, and T.V.

Well, Hubby went into Brother’s room to say prayers, give kisses, etc. While they were saying their goodnights, Brother casually mentioned, “I think I want a brother this time.” A bit confused, Hubby asked, “WHAT?” Brother simply explained, “Mom said you were having special adult time, and I know what that means.”

Hubby quickly blew him off and put him to bed. He then came to tell me the story. I was completely HORRIFIED! I don’t know which is more disturbing – the fact that my son knows/thinks about his parents and “special adult time” or the realization that he thinks a baby come from each “special encounter.”

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Fast Food Love

It is well established that I am in good company of others who love Sonic. Who couldn't love 1/2 price drinks in 150 ba-jillion combinations? While I love me some Route 44 goodness, I haven't joined the Sonic Facebook group, because we all know how I feel about those ridiculous groups. However, Today when I was on the Sonic website, I noticed something very fun. People can go there and upload photos of them enjoying Sonic goodness. I believe we all should go to the website and upload a photo. It would be like a big, bloggy Sonic party - and who doesn't like a party? AND, we could all be FAMOUS! (all 3 of us :) ) So, I'll be looking for your photo - and since I do not have a fancy phone, I will have to take my SLR to Sonic and capture our family moment.

Okay, really my post today was to be about my other Fast Food Love - Chick-fil-a!

Can I get an "AMEN, Sister"? Who doesn't love Christian chicken? Now, I know some of you dear readers may be attached to the sweet tea. Being a Southern transplant, I cannot claim such an addiction. While I enjoy the flavor of sweet tea, it has yet to become my drink of choice. I have so many reasons I love Chick-fil-a, and I refrain from listing them here (although I have a great love of bulleted lists). BUT, I did have to share my one new love - cleanliness. First, I have to say, I am not a clean freak kind of mom. I strongly believe that exposure to germs is a great way to build a natural immunity. Not in an "attend a chicken pox party" kind of way, but in a "a little dirt won't hurt" kind of way. But the chick-fil-a won my heart today when I was at the mall with sweet sister. We ordered our usual kids meal, and when I got to the table and opened the bag, what did my happy heart find? Not only a correct order, but also included was a table protector thingy, a purell handiwipe, and a mint! Clean, Christian chicken goodness!

On a final note, I need to address my dear friends who cannot benefit from the chick-fil-a cuisine. Please, promise me you will eat all you can when you find one. Oh, and Whimzie, if you fall into the above mentioned category, I don't care how beautiful the leaves may be in the fall, you need to get out of fast food hell and return to the South.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Bum Life

I've come to dislike Sundays. Sundays have always been a bit of stress in our family because of Hubby's work. But now that we are in limbo between ministry positions, Sundays have become a whole new monster in my life. I miss having a church home. I miss the accountability of church family. I miss walking in the church each week, being greeted with a knowing smile, and a genuine interest in my well-being.

Don't get me wrong, we have attended some nice churches the past weeks, and we have met some very nice, friendly people. However, these people aren't family. You know how it is with family. You can be yourself - warts and all - and they still love you. They have taken the time to really know you and can tell your mood by a few, brief questions. They know your history, they are your history, and know your prayer needs specifically. They cannot be fooled by the curt, "Fine."

You see, we have become church "attenders." Anyone can be an attender. It really is quite simple. You get up, get dressed, and go to some house of worship. I'm ready for more than a place to attend, I'm looking for a church HOME. Being involved within a church home implies not just some place one visits but rather has chosen to reside within -- to live and to grow. It's a place that is not merely an address but rather a place of shelter, warmth, joy, security, and a place to go forth from each day to enter the world.

Simply put, we have become spiritually homeless. As I expressed my frustration last night to my sweet hubby, I called us spiritual bums. I don't want to be a bum.
"Finally, I want all of you to live together in peace. Be understanding. Love one another like members of the same family. Be kind and tender. Don't be proud. Don't pay back evil with evil. Don't pay back unkind words with unkind words. Instead, pay them back with kind words. That's what you have been chosen to do. You can receive a blessing by doing it." 1 Peter 3:8-9

Friday, May 15, 2009

Just a Short Note

I haven't been around to blog in the past few days. I've been reading a book - and that means I suck up all my free time for that instead of anything else. I needed a little break from the life of waiting for the Lord to move, so I escaped into a fictional Kentucky town. It has been a nice respite.

I wanted to make sure I posted today for my Prayer Warriors. Today, I'm requesting prayer for Maggie Nail. She is a 4 year old little girl in need of a kidney transplant. She has a 2% chance of finding a donor match, so I am praying for a miracle in this little girl's life. Please join me in praying. I cannot find a family website, but here is a link to the family's story from our local news.

I also want to put Rich Behm and his family on our prayer lists. Rich was paralyzed in the Dallas Cowboy's stadium collapse a few weeks ago. He has a wife and 3 kids. Please pray for his recovery and for God to provide peace, comfort, and direction to this family.

Okay, that is all for now. I hope you have a fun-filled weekend with your families. Our looks to be a bit soggy - but maybe soccer will be canceled. :)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

There's No One Exactly Like ... ME!

Today is Wednesday - the day all of Brother's graded work is sent home from school in the special red folder. I guess his teacher is a bit slow, because in today's Wednesday folder was an extra special Mother's Day card - created by my lovely first-born. It was one of those fill-in-the-blank cards. It is so special, I wanted to transcribe it for you and add my much needed commentary so you can see why it brought me to tears.

My mother is very special. She is five feet tall. I am 8 inches taller than 5 feet, but I'm thankful that Brother doesn't see me as a giant. She weighs 145 pounds. Um, not since jr. high, but thanks for the lowball guess. My mother is 35 years old. ding, ding he got one right. She wears a size 38 dress. Not even close, but his logic is good. See, he is 8 and wears a 10. So, since I am 35, I must wear a 38. She wears a size 9 1/2 shoe. Sad, but true. Why does he know this about me? My mother has green eyes. I guess that is right. Her favorite thing to drink is Dite Coke. True, so true. Bless him because he has my spelling skills. I'm sure if he had enough room, he would have written Diet coke with easy ice. Her favorite food to eat is hamburger. I'll let this sneak in because technically, I do like to eat a hamburger. It may not be my favorite, but since I obviously eat a lot to fill my size 38 dress, the poor kid can't tell what my favorite is. My mother's favorite thing to do at home is Play on Facebook. Okay, now I feel convicted. I'm glad he didn't lie and say vacuum or laundry, but really -- did I want the whole school, and by now I'm sure it is the whole school, to know that I spent entirely too much time on the computer? The very best thing about my mother is that she is "MY" mother. I love her very much!

WOW! Isn't that a treasure?!? Yeah, I'm not sure if those tears are for really, or just because I've laughed too much. Don't you just love Mother's Day?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Laugh to Keep from Crying

One of my favorite parenting techniques it to take advantage of "teachable moments." You know, allow them to mess up, then teach why it turned out so badly. Well, I guess that isn't the only kind of teachable moment. Sometimes, I get to take the opportunity to tell them the "truth" before it turns out badly. Such was the case with sweet baby girl. But first I have to give you a bit of background.

Sister had her tonsils and adenoids removed in December. When we checked into the hospital, the volunteers gave her a stuffed dog. I don't know why the attachment was formed, but since then, Sister hasn't gone many places without her beloved Presley. Presley has become like another member of our family.

I also must add, that I have a bit of bitterness in my heart towards Presley because he has replaced Marvin the Monkey. Marvin was Sister's first buddy. I loved Marvin - still do! The week before surgery, I drove all over town looking for a second Marvin - just in case the original got lost. Now I have 2 unloved monkeys. Anyway...back to the story.

The other day, Sister and I were driving to pick up Brother from school. She mentioned to me that she was excited to tell Brother about her day, "because he will be jealous." I, being the wise mother that I am, took this opportunity to correct Sister. I told her that we are not to be happy when other people are jealous. I told her that the Bible tells us to be sensitive to other people's feelings. Sister quickly jumped in and told me that it wasn't her that wanted Brother to be jealous, but it was Presley. (Isn't it always someone else's fault?)

I just simply ignored her and mentioned that it doesn't make Jesus happy when we are mean to our friends and family. That the Bible tells us to treat others as they wish to be treated. Sister, not about to be convicted of her sin, came back with, "Yeah, well, Presley doesn't like Jesus."

So, I guess I need to have some more "teachable moments" with Presley - and maybe let him tag-along to church a few Sundays. I bet Marvin loves Jesus!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Gladitudes - Motherhood Edition

I think I was the only person who participated in Mer's 10 on the 10th party who didn't focus on moms. So, I have chosen to make today's gladitude post all about motherhood -- because I truly have a lot to be thankful for.

  1. I'm thankful that I get to wear the title of mom, because there was a time in my life when I wasn't sure my dream of motherhood would ever be fulfilled.
  2. Along the same lines, I'm now thankful for the struggles I had to become a mom, because they taught me the power of prayer and allowed me to witness God's power in my life. It has also made me appreciate my little rugrats - even during the difficult times - for these are the children for which I prayed.
  3. I'm thankful for my awesome husband and the wonderful blog post he had about me for Mother's day. (I'd give y'all the link, but his blog is linked to his ministry and has his complete name, and I don't want our last name out there since I post pictures of the kids.) It was a wonderful thing - better than any card - and reminded me again that he is a much better husband than I am a wife.
  4. I'm thankful for the great breakfast cooked for me yesterday, because nothing says "Happy Mother's Day" better than being awakened by the smoke detector.
  5. I'm thankful for my grandmother and that she is still active and able to be a part of our lives. I love that my kids will have family pictures with 4 generations in them.
  6. I'm thankful for my mom. For her generosity and love - especially during this time of uncertainty in our family.
  7. I'm thankful for my mother-in-law's improved health. She had a stroke last summer, and we almost lost her. I'm so thankful that she is a walking miracle - with no real side-effects from the stroke.
  8. I'm thankful for the blog world, because reading other's posts about motherhood like this and this remind me of the mom I want to be and inspires me to do more for my family and for the women around me.

Happy Monday! I'm now off to participate in the some of the not-so-wonderful tasks of motherhood - cleaning the bathroom and doing the laundry. But I'm still grateful!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

OH! The Places We'll Go

Welcome for another day of 10 on the tenth, hosted by Mer at Life at 7000 Feet.

Last month, one blogger shared places she would like to visit. Well, I wanted to take a bit of a spin on the same theme. But first, I have to reveal one of my quirks. I have no desire to ever travel outside North America. I just have a big love for the United States, and I think it has plenty to see and do inside its borders. I was raised as an Air Force brat, so I have been to/through 42 of the 50 states, but I still have so many other things I want to see. I used to say that I wanted to die without getting a passport, but since one is now required for cruising, and trips to Mexico and Canada, I foresee that I will have to get one. Hubby and I honeymooned in Vancouver, Canada, and we hope to return one day and ski Whistler.

Anywho ... Now that is out of the way, here is my list of places I want to see with hubby and the kiddos. Some I have already seen as a child, but would like to experience them again. These are in not particular order – just simply as the pictures loaded.

1. Yosemite National Park - I haven't ever been there, but I think it is just beautiful and would like to see it in person.

2. Washington, D.C. - I was fortunate enough to be born in our Nation's capital. It is such a fantastic city, filled with such great history. I really believe everyone needs to see it in person. 3. New England in the fall - When I was 5, we lived in Rhode Island for a year while my daddy attended the Naval War College. I was young, but I still remember the splendor of the trees in the fall. They are just beautiful! I was to go back and see them again - and taste the fresh maple syrup.

4. St. Louis, Missouri - I also lived in St. Louis as a girl. I want to take my family on the tram to the top of the Gateway Arch. St. Louis is a great vacation place because many of the attractions are free - including the zoo. What a great place to take a family!

5. New York City - My hubby and I just took our first trip ever to New York City in February. It was such a great city, but we still have things on our list that we want to see and do - including a visit to Lady Liberty. So, a next trip is definitely on our list of must do's. We will even take the kids this time.
6. LegoLand - I cannot imagine a more magical place on earth. We haven't done any theme parks with the kids, but LegoLand is at the top of our list. My little guy is crazy about Legos, and I am so impressed with the things they can build with those colorful bricks. I look forward to our first trip to LegoLand.
7. Savannah, Georgia - I haven't been to this southern city, but I hear it is wonderful. While there, I want to eat at Paula Deen's restaurant because I need more calories in my diet.
8. The Grand Canyon - I can only imagine how small one feels on the rim of the Grand Canyon. And now they have a glass walkway that hangs over the edge, so you can walk over the rim. How cool is that?!? I really need to see it for myself.
9. Albuquerque Balloon Festival - Our family has a love affair with hot air balloons. We have been to several different balloon festivals, but we haven't been to the grand-daddy of them all.
10. Mount Rushmore - Brother did a state report in the first grade. He picked South Dakota by telling the teacher he wanted to do "the one with the heads." Now that we learned so much about South Dakota, we have a desire to see it in person. I think it is just a wonderful monument and a great wonder of the world.
There you have it! Now, if only I could figure out how I could get someone to pay for me to visit all these places, life would be good! If you've visited any of these places, I'd like to hear your reviews. Also, do you have summer vacation plans?

Finally, Happy Mothers Day to all my beautiful friends who have the hardest, and most rewarding, job anyone can have! God bless each of you!

Ace of Cakes ... not me!

When I was a little girl, my mom had a fabulous book of cut-up cakes. My sister and I always knew our birthday was getting near when mom would take the cake book out and have us flip through and choose our birthday cake for that year. When Brother was born, I was so determined to continue in the homemade birthday cake tradition. So, I went to Michael's and took all of the Wilton cake decorating classes. I really enjoyed cake decorating - and even managed to make some cakes for money. Then, little boy got to be big enough to mess in my icing and I got a bit too perfectionistic. I would stress that I spend 3-6 hours on a cake, only for it to be cut and eaten. So, I put away my cake tools - only to be brought out for family occasions (Birthday cake for Jesus, Brother, and Sister).

This year, my niece called and told me that the thing she really wanted for her 8th birthday was a cake by Aunt Steph. My sister even offered to pay me for it. So, not because we need the money, but because I really love my niece and enjoy cake decorating, I agreed. My niece didn't have a birthday theme in mind. She only wanted something grown up because, "8 is no longer a baby." So, I took the opportunity to create something new. I've always liked the present cakes, but I do not like the taste of fondant. I iced the cake in buttercream and created (for the first time ever) a fondant bow. I'm very happy with the result! I know dear niece will be happy, too.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Happy Mother's Day Weekend

Since it is the weekend that we celebrate moms. I wanted to share with you my son's favorite MOM SONG. My mom is coming into town this afternoon, so it will be a good weekend for us here! I hope you all have a special time of celebration. I know that you are appreciated for all the wonderful things you do as a mom!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Dating AGAIN?!?

September 22, 1996 - a day I remember with sheer joy.
The day I got engaged.
Oh! it was a happy time. Not only was this man that I was crazy about committing to spend the rest of my life with me, but he was also rescuing me from a dark, evil world - the world of dating.

You ladies know what world I'm talking about.
Constant questions ... Crash dieting ... Desperate prayers ... Lonely evenings ... Self-doubt ... Waiting for the one
Need I go on???

Well, I have re-entered that world. I thought I could avoid it until sweet Sister was ALOT older, but it has come into my life in a new form - job hunting! I don't know about job hunting in the business world, but job hunting in the ministry world is not just interview and reject/hire. No! It is a courtship, engagement, and a marriage. It is a journey full of those same feelings - the same ups and downs - the same desperate prayers. (even a diet - although in a more sensible form.)

So, a few months ago, hubby was talking with a church about 100 miles from where we current live. He began talking with them right after we learned that he would be losing his job. He went to the interview alone. I stayed home, walked the floor, and prayed that God would give us discernment. We don't just want to take a job because it is out there and we need income. We want a job that is a good fit for Hubby, and for our family. Remember - it is a marriage. And just like a marriage, a bad fit could equal lots of heartache!

When Hubby came home, he told me that it was "okay." When I asked what that meant, he explained, "Well, I find myself hoping that the prettier girl calls me tomorrow." So, we prayed about it, and although it broke a major rule in dating/employment - Don't leave one unless you have another waiting in the wings - we knew it wasn't the one for us. We were so glad when they came to the same conclusion and hired someone else.

A few months later (and a few other interviews later) we were contacted by the prettier girl - although for the sake of the analogy, it is now the handsome guy because we all know that good Christian girls don't call boys. :) Hubby flew out of state to meet with them, and came home proclaiming that this was the one. Now, we just had to wait for them to proclaim the same. Well, we waited and waited and waited some more. My dad was even impatient and called me to ask if there was any way we could contact them. I reminded him that this is a courtship and that the girls do not call the boys. Isn't he the one who enforced that rule when I was younger??? We began to doubt ourselves and even threw around "He's just not that into you."

Well, finally they called! They had been praying - how holy is that? - and really would like to know more and see where this relationship led. So, we were overcome with joy! I mean, we've known for 3 weeks that they were the one. What took them so long? So, hubby flew out again to meet with the committee. He says it went well, and that they are discussing a third visit - and I get to be a part of it this time. So, they are ready to meet the family. That is a bold move. They know our situation, and while they aren't ready to ask us to not talk with other churches, they have expressed their desire to get to know us better. I think we are beyond "hanging out." I think we are "going together" - I just haven't gotten the official "check yes or no" offer.

I'll let you know when we start ring shopping. Just keep praying!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Graditude...Join the Fun

I'm a day behind the others because I read Gretchen's post after I had already written mine for Monday, but I love the new button and want to be sure to my list of things I'm thankful for. So, here it goes:
  1. I'm thankful for solitude. I'm the kind of gal who needs her some alone time to remain sane. Since Hubby has been home for the past month, life has been fun, but I have missed my alone time. Today I celebrate because Brother has school, Sister has her one day of Mother's Day Out, and Husband has a meeting with a friend. That means I have the place to myself!
  2. I'm thankful for my Wednesday morning Bible Study ladies because they have become my new family during this time of "spiritual homelessness." Being without a church home has been harder than I thought it would be.
  3. I'm thankful for facebook because it had pictures posted to my account - pictures that I thought were forever lost when our computer was stolen a few months ago. I was able to retrieve them, resize them, and restore them on our new computer (with a backup flash drive).
  4. I'm thankful for the thunderstorms that came through this weekend and that we were all safe from any destruction. I'm also thankful for the time without electricity because it gave Hubby and I some quiet time to be still and talk with one another. Don't you just LOVE the quietness of the house when there is no power?!?
  5. I'm thankful that my diaper days are mostly over because nothing make me feel more inept than potty training. I mean, really, does anyone know how to do it? I think it is just a lot of trial and error. Very frustrating!
  6. I'm thankful for the beautiful flowers that my sweet hubby bought me yesterday. They are for Mother's Day. I LOVE fresh flowers and I love how my house feels so happy when I have fresh flowers. And, I love that these are florist flowers instead of grocery store/SAM'S flowers. Not because I'm snobby like that, but because it is a splurge that we don't usually partake of. So they are special.
  7. I'm thankful that Hubby has a decent lead for a new Associate Pastor position. It just makes waiting easier when you can see a flicker of light coming from the end of the tunnel - and this time it doesn't feel like a train.
  8. Finally, and always, I'm thankful for my family, especially my crazy kids, because they make life so much fun and fill each day with a bit of laughter. Where else can you go and see these two characters on a regular basis!?!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Wounds from a Friend can be Trusted

I did it.

I have been avoiding it for months.

I finally went and touched base with an old "friend" today.

I use the term loosely. For this friend is one of those that you love to hate. One of those that "tells it like it is" and doesn't let you pretend to be something you aren't. One of those that you avoid when you know you have sinned because you don't want to be reminded of your poor choice.

It is a tricky relationship because this friend can also be the most encouraging when I am making good choices. This friend will help me celebrate even the tiniest of successes. This friend will keep me going when the going gets tough and pushes me to be a better person. This friend is the one who holds one of my deepest secrets, and doesn't tell a single soul. It is a true Proverbs 17:17 friend, "A friend loves at all times. He is there to help when trouble comes."

So, despite my recent failures, I decided it was time to re-connect. Time for me to move past the past 3 ... maybe 4 ... okay 5 months of resentment and really listen to the truth of my friend. So, I got up with my alarm, said a small prayer, and went into the bathroom.

There it was.

My old "friend" ... the scale! GASP!!

Like I expected, the news it had for me was discouraging, but full of the truth I needed. Now that I have rekindled this relationship, I can start re-creating (or is it recreating as in recreation) myself.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Saturday Soccer and Storms

I prayed for rain, but it came a bit too late to cancel Saturday's soccer game. Is it bad that I wanted the game to be cancelled? We like to teach Brother the importance of team sports, and the fact that you keep a commitment, but sometimes it is just so hard to sit out on the soccer field and cheer. While members of our family may be a wee bit competitive (ahem), we are not an athletic family at all. While, I know I'm not raising any professional athletes, I want to teach my kids the importance of physical activity. So we encourage Brother's love of soccer. He plays at a near-by church in their not-so-competitive league. Once we treked through the mud and dodged a sprinkle, we enjoyed an hour or so in the great outdoors.

Our Favorite Cheerleader

Our Soccer Star

After the game (which we loss b/c the other coach doesn't fully understand the concept of "not-so-competitive"), we went to lunch at my favorite Saturday lunch place. It is a local pizzeria that makes the pizzas - including throwing the dough - in front of the kids. It is a nice place to sit and visit as a couple while the kiddos are entertained by the kitchen. The pizza is really good, too. If you were to look for us around noon on Saturday, you would most likely find us at Brooklyn's.

All, this, and it still hadn't rained. But, never fear, I fully trusted my friendly weather guy, and like a good girl scout, I was fully prepared. Next door to the pizza place is the Blockbuster. Yes, we are one of the few who don't Netflix. We don't DVR either. Aren't you sad for us? Anyways, we ran in there and got 2 movies to fill our rainy day afternoon. Here's what we rented:

We got home and settled in for the afternoon of movie bliss. I just love sitting around and watching movies, and I'm so glad I have kids who like to do that with me. We made it through Bolt with a few claps of thunder and ever-darkening skies. When the movie was over, and we turned it off, the TV immediately showed a scary-red radar. Then the wind kicked up and the sky poured down. Then, we heard about this:

You can only image the television coverage that got right here in Cowboy Country. Then, the tornado sirens went off, sending Brother into the hallway to duck and cover. Aren't we such great parents? We didn't even move when the sirens went off. We could see the radar. We knew we were safe. Once we convinced him that the family didn't need to join him, and that he needed to join us, we were able to pop some corn and continue with our double feature. Thankfully, we got through the movie, and got the kiddos tucked into bed (but not asleep) before we lost electricity. Of course, they both tried to argue that they couldn't sleep because it was too dark. Yeah, right! They both sleep in dark rooms with the the covers over their heads! It was a long day, but Hubby and I waited up until 12:30 when the lights returned and we could properly shut down the house and go to bed ourselves. Another wave rolled through about 4 a.m. I didn't get up to check the radar. Instead, I stayed in bed, praying that the thunder wouldn't wake the sleeping beauties in my house. God answered that prayer!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Fun Friday!!

It is my blog, so I'm taking a deviation from my normal Friday post. It has been a tough week for me, and I believe laughter is the best medicine, so here is a list of random things that brought me a good, hearty laugh.
  • Yesterday, we received hubby's final check from the church. It is the equivalent to 5 months salary. It is the most money we have ever had at one time. (yes, I know Dave Ramsy would be greatly disappointed that we don't hold that much in savings on a regular basis.) Well, I promptly went to the bank and deposited the check into our savings account. A few hours later - right after I told hubby that I hope that check cleared - the bank called. I thought for sure they were calling to tell us they had to put a hold on the funds until they were verified, or something else like that. No, they were just calling to thank us for our business. I guess that is the treatment the rich folks get. The bank will be so sad to know that is our last deposit for a while. It was nice to see how the other side lives.

  • I went to Walmart by myself the other day. *bliss* I preceded to spend 30 minutes in the card section. Some of those cards were just too funny. I think my favorite was the wedding card with the couple on the beach - girl still in her wedding dress. There were thought bubbles over their heads. His: Sex! Sex! Sex! Hers: Thank you notes! Thank you notes! Thank you notes!

  • My mom sent me this email. I don't want to be political, but I liked this one:

  • If you have a Facebook account, go log into it right now. Scroll down to the bottom left corner where you see “English” and click that. Change it to “English (pirate)." Then waste hours of time entertaining yourself with the pirate jargon. I'm still loving the fact it says I was born in Arrrrgust and "friend request" is "sorry lout thinks they're yer mate!"

So, now that I've lost you all to Facebook, I will sign off! Have a great weekend.