Thursday, July 29, 2010

Back to school already?!

It's hard to believe that summer is almost over and school is ready to start again. This year, we are homeschooling our soon-to-be first grader. The just-turned-three-year-old will be doing letters, numbers, shapes, and colors at home as well. I love that stage! I am also excited about homeschooling and doing first grade. My degree is actually in secondary education, but it's so exciting to be able to teach and see the lights come on and try to make it interesting. Plus, knowing exactly what my daughter is learning is very comforting to me. It won't be exactly easy, but it will be so worth it, in my opinion. I just love my girls so very much and can't wait to see them grow in every way right before my eyes.
It's so hard to believe that my first "baby" will be six this weekend! She was born two weeks before her due date, the day (well, technically the next morning) we moved out of our second floor apartment and into my in-laws basement. Our house wasn't finished yet (of course), and wouldn't be for another six weeks. So we never had fewer than three people in our little basement room at my in-laws. But it was cozy. :)
Now she will be six years old. Six years! Wow, a lot has happened in the last six years. I can't wait for the next six years, and the next, and the next... Watching my daughter turn into a young lady...kinda brings tears to your eyes. :) I remember being in a friend's wedding when my daughter was about ten months old. As I stood there at the front of the church, I remember crying and thinking, "I could never do this" and my daughter wasn't even a year old! Seems silly, but if you're a mom of a daughter, you know exactly what I mean. Now, if her dad and I can just make it through the next however many years and, by God's grace, train her to be a godly young woman who will love Him with all of her heart, we'll have it made. :) God will give us the strength and the wisdom. And we pray every day that our girls will grow to love their Savior more and more each day and desire to be like Him in every way. What an awesome responsibility we have! And what an awesome God we serve. :)

Monday, July 26, 2010

Singin' the Blues

Well, feeling them is a more accurate description. It was just one of those weeks last week, ya know? The kind that just made you want to cry at the drop of a hat. I have friends going through some hard times and it just breaks my heart. It is so refreshing, though, to know that they are all trusting in the Lord through their trials. How encouraging! But the storms of life are still quite difficult to navigate. And it can get awfully depressing out there in those "bogs". My family went through a violent storm almost two years ago and we still struggle here and there when things come up and remind us about it. I always thought that depression was for "those" people, not me. But it happens. I remember not wanting to get out of bed, or do laundry, or dishes (of course, who does? ;) ). If it weren't for my two small children and my wonderful husband, I probably would NOT have gotten out of bed for a while. Thankfully, after a while, my sweetie took our lovely girls out for a whole morning so that I could have some time by myself. I was SO depressed. I remember sitting in my large walk-in closet just balling and pouring my broken heart out to my merciful and gracious Savior. And do you know what? He heard me! Yes, and He gave me sweet assurances from His Word. Oh, what a precious time that was! Very bittersweet, but so meaningful. A friend of mine who is going through a storm just wrote the other day that sometimes God brings us through trials because we couldn't learn the lesson any other way. I thought that was an interesting thought. We learned so very much these past couple of years and continue to learn. I'm so glad we don't have to stay depressed, though. Instead, we look to our precious Savior in Whom true joy is found! And, even if we don't feel "happy", we can be at peace. Almost two years ago, I did not feel "happy". Our lives were turned upside down, most of our "friends" who we thought loved and cared for us so much turned their backs on us, and we were left trying to make some sense of what had happened. My husband and I spent many tears, much time praying, and many long nights just talking. And we always found encouragement in God's Word. Always. Job's life was very encouraging to us. "Though he slay me, yet will I trust in Him," Job said. What a testimony! The Psalms were very rich for me, as well. On Sunday, a verse that I had really clung to for a while was mentioned and it brought tears to my eyes just remembering everything. Psalm 16:11 says "Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore." When I read this verse almost two years ago, we had no idea what we were going to do or where we were going to go. We were on our way to Papua New Guinea as missionaries...had all of our missionary support, visas, and we were getting ready to pack up and head out. But it all came to an abrupt and hurtful end. So we were at a loss as far as what to do next. This verse was so encouraging to me, though. He would show me the path of life. I didn't need to worry. And, hallelujah, in HIS presence there is fulness of joy! What a thought. Oh, the promises in God's Word that we need to ponder. HE is SO very good to us, isn't He? Well, I think I've rambled on enough. Until next time.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

"A friend is a friend is a friend is a friend is a friend"

Ahhh. Great words of wisdom from Bob the tomato and Larry the cucumber. :) This song is quite annoying, but it made me stop and think the other day. What is a friend exactly? I have approximately 281 friends on facebook currently. But are they all truly my "friends"? What does Scripture say..."greater love has no man that this, that a man lay down his life for a friend." Not sure I'm willing to exactly lay down my life for some of my 'friends' on facebook. :) But can you imagine loving a friend like that? As moms, we have that type of love for our children. As a wife, I love my best friend (my husband) enough to lay down my life for him. But Christ goes even farther than that! Romans 5:8 reminds us that while we were sinners (that is, enemies of God), Christ died for us. Isn't that amazing love?! Truly, what a friend we have in Jesus. I Corinthians 13 tells us what love is all about. Sometimes it seems so daunting...the task of truly loving (the way the Bible tells us to) a friend. Now I love my friends, don't get me wrong, but my love for them is not always consistent with Scripture. But how important it is! Why else would God inspire Paul to spend a whole chapter on it?

At one time, I thought I had the best, most loving, most devoted friends in the world. We prayed together, drank Starbucks together, had Mary Kay parties together, etc. Then, in an instant, they were gone and pretty much never looked back. All because they believed a simple lie that was told to them about me. I thought surely they would stand by me because they knew me and love me. It was one of the most difficult times in my life. (It is actually a much longer story that I may write about one of these days.) It was a difficult situation to handle, and I'm not judging's been almost two years and I'm way past that by now. But it crushed me at the time. My friends mean SO much to me and it seemed like the ultimate betrayal. Praise God for HIS friendship, though, and that HE will NEVER betray us! HE is the ultimate Friend and HE will never leave us nor forsake us. We should be looking to HIM as our example of what a friend should be. I'm so glad He's my He yours? If He is, have you thanked Him lately for the friendship He's offered to us at so great a cost to Him?

Saturday, July 10, 2010


I am not exactly a craft kind of person. I'll do it if I have to or if it is simple and easy to do. You know, stuff like that. However, tonight I did it. I have been looking at getting those memory board things for the girls. You know, the ones with pretty fabric and criss-crossing ribbons on them? They just seemed too expensive at the store and not exactly the colors I wanted. So I decided it couldn't be that hard or expensive to make my own. Wal-Mart had cork tiles sold in a package of four for $5.96 today, so we got some. They are 12x12 and seemed to be the perfect size for my project. Then, in the fabric section, they had some pieces that were $1! They are quilting pieces or something like that. So the girls got to pick their fabric (that is my disclaimer...the green/pink isn't exactly my favorite, but she likes it :)). Then I got some ribbon to match which was 47cents for like seven yards! So, not too bad price-wise. Put some staples in the back to hold the fabric and hot glue on the front to hold the ribbon...

and there you have it. It didn't take too terribly long either. I'm sure they could look nicer and fancier, but for a few bucks, they totally work! I want to accent where the ribbon comes together with something...buttons, pins...just something. But anyway, that was my project for the day and I'm a bit proud of it. Just thought I'd share. :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

To Your Health

Every time I go grocery shopping, I find myself more and more annoyed by the prices of food...healthy food in particular. Why is it that the jelly, bread, snacks, juice, etc. that do NOT contain high fructose corn syrup are the most expensive? Well, I KNOW why. Just don't think it's quite fair really. :) Oh well. I try, as much as is financially possible, to buy groceries that are as natural as possible. The Sunflower Market is a great place for that, by the way. If you haven't been, you should really go. Their sales are really great...regular prices not so much. But you can still find lots of great stuff at great prices. (And, no, they don't pay me to advertise. ;) ) So, until I start getting paid for looking out for my family and their health, ;) I'll be faithfully clipping coupons, following grocery store ads, and frequently visiting more than one grocery store during a good shopping trip. And maybe one day, the price of truly organic/natural foods will come down so that everyone will be able to afford healthy eating. But please don't take this as griping or complaining. Well, I guess it is a bit of complaining. :) I am grateful for the array of fresh fruits and veggies and other great foods that are available for our consumption. God is so good to allow us to live here in this country where we have plenty. How blessed we truly are! Let me tell you, though, some foreign countries are awfully blessed in the fruit and vegetable department! You would not believe the size of the carrots that are grown on the hillside in the jungles of Papua New Guinea. I'll have to find a picture and put it up here. So yummy. And sweet potatoes...over forty different kinds! And to think that God created it all...for us! HE truly is "Awesome".

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Separation Anxiety?

I would describe myself and my husband as pretty balanced people. Our children are, for the most part, pretty balanced as well. However, the last couple of weeks at our house have definitely NOT been balanced. Not sure exactly what is going on. We moved into our townhome about six weeks ago. My girls are almost six and just turned three. My almost-six-year-old was pretty excited about having her own room at the "new house" as they call it. Everything was just fine for a few weeks and then...

The almost-six-year-old will not sleep in her room by herself. At first, we thought it must be just utter rebellion and her refusing to obey what we had told her to do. But that doesn't seem to be it. We have done almost everything we can think of. She seems to have some sort of separation anxiety. She just wants us! So I have been sleeping on the floor of her room on futons for over a week so that she will stay in bed and sleep. I have spent good money on glow-in-the-dark stars, tried leaving the light on, got a bright night light, punished, bribed, rewarded. Sounds exhausting, doesn't it? It is. So we are praying for the LORD to give us a clear answer as to where we go from here. Because I am certainly not going to be sleeping in her room until she's 25!

This too shall pass, right? I have found it very tiring to deal with, but isn't it great to know that we aren't doing this alone? God's Word has been so much more precious to me lately. Verses have been flooding back to me that I had once memorized or just even heard. I'm glad that my strength is not my's the LORD's! And HIS mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3). Trust me, I am desperately in need of that strength and those mercies...especially when it comes to a certain six-year-old. :) And the times of prayer that my husband and I have been having together lately have just been so encouraging! The best tears ever spent, in my opinion, are spent in earnest prayer over our children. I thank and praise God for them! Let's earnestly pray for them every day. Check out Colossians chapter 1 (if I remember right, it's right about in the middle of it) for a great "check list" of sorts to pray for others for (including our children). Paul did.


Well, here it is folks. I have officially started a blog. There has been so much that I have wanted to express lately so here is my latest try. We'll see how it goes. Check back often because I plan to write plenty! Hope you enjoy.