"Your greatest contribution to the Kingdom of God may not be something you do, but someone you raise." ~Andy Stanley

February 28, 2007

The rest of the story

I was telling my hubby about the sweet comments I received to the post I shared remembering my mom and her death and he thought I should 'finish' the story by sharing with you another one of the treasures I have. (besides the memories)

I have a letter from her! It was such a surprise blessing! My dad gave it to me when I was 21. For years I thought that she and I had similar handwriting which I thought was neat, but I later found out she wasn't able to write anymore at that time. She'd dictated it to her sister. Here's what it says:

My Dear Becky,
I love you so much. You mean so much to me. You have been the best little girl in the whole world. I don't know how to write it all down on paper how I feel about you. It hurts me to leave you like this, you are so young. But there are some things in this life that we don't have any control over. And Becky, I believe with all my soul that I am going to meet the Lord. And I believe that is worth anything in the whole world. It's my hope and prayer is that you live (as) faithfully to the Lord as possible, so we can all be together again some day. And Becky you have a good daddy and he loves you very much, and you have Jenny too. There are so many people in your life. Stay close to the ones that love you, take their help, and listen to their advice. Please never forget me. You have been a joy to my heart. Remember all the fun and good times we have had together. Never forget our vacation to Big Basin.
I love you so very much.

I can't imagine how hard that must have been to write!
It is one of my dearest treasures and is matted, framed and hangs in our bedroom. : )


Wednesdays in the Word

On Wednesdays I love to share something from my favorite book of all time, the Bible. : )

Psalm 98 says "Oh sing to the Lord a new song! For He has done marvelous things..."

Oh my goodness, isn't His list of marvelous things done in our lives HUGE?
Some of my favorite marvelous things He's done have been:

-to let me get to know a very fired up youth leader who majorly impacted my life
-to grant permission to my wonderful hubby to ask me to marry him
-to entrust us with 4 'rewards from the Lord' to raise
-to add an addition on to our little house so that it was big enough to raise this fun family and He did it in such an amazing just about miraculous way. (see post: our amazing friend)
-to give me a supernatural healing from pneumonia and reactive airway disease
-to deliver me from all my fears

And there are many many more and this passage says we ought to break out the instruments and sing because of them! : )

"Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth; break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises, sing to the Lord with the harp, with the harp and the sound of a psalm, with trumpets and the sound of a horn, shout joyfully before the Lord the King."

And of course, by far the most marvelous thing He did which is worthy of every song we could ever sing and will sing for eternity, is what Jesus made possible for all of us in His death on the cross.
"All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God."

And "He is coming to judge the earth."


February 26, 2007

His Faithfulness

Through my eyes at the age of six........

I remember my Mommy making cinnamon and sugar toast for me. One morning she dropped the jar of cinnamon and sugar on her foot. She was in a lot of pain. She and Daddy talked quietly together, and then they told me that Mommy had cancer. I knew it was because of the jar that fell on her foot.

I remember visiting my grandparents. They lived in a small town. Mommy and I went to the grocery store with Grandma. I had a fun idea. I asked Mommy if she would pretend to be blind and let me lead her through the store with her eyes closed. She agreed. (Mommy was always up for any kind of fun) Grandma and Mommy had a little fight in one of the isles because Grandma did not like our game. I heard Mommy say that one day I may have to lead her through a store some day and Grandma didn't say anything else. I think she was sad.

I remember going to visit Mommy in the hospital in my Grandparents Cadillac. The backseat was huge! I remember being told to 'act like little ladies.' My cousin and my little sister and I would fold our hands and cross our legs whenever we heard that. It was a fun game.

I remember that hospitals had lots of rules. One rule said that my sister and I were too young to go in and see Mommy.

I remember my Grandpa building a deck outside the back door of our kitchen. It was made of redwood and it was beautiful. It was a gift for Mommy so that she could go outside in her wheelchair.

I remember Mommy in her wheelchair. We went to a wedding of a very special friend of hers. When everyone stood as Mommy's friend came down the isle, Mommy stood too. People were really surprised. But, she'd been practicing. This was her special gift to the bride.

I remember getting a hospital bed at our house! We put it in the living room. My bedroom was on the other side of the wall. Mommy and I made a secret code of knocks so that we could communicate when I was in bed.

I remember a lady from church wanting to give Mommy a break. She wanted to take my sister and I home with her to play with her granddaughter. Mommy left it up to us whether we wanted to go or not. This lady seemed really frustrated. She wanted Mommy to tell us to go with her but she wouldn't. Well, why would we want to leave Mommy anyway. We stayed.

I remember going to church without Mommy. It was OK though, because after the service the whole church came to our house. They brought the communion which meant a lot to Mommy and they all watched her take it and sang. It was really crowded at our house then. People filled up every room.

I remember being allowed to go to see her in the hospital once. People took pictures of my sister and I with her and of us with her and Daddy. She looked different. Her face was swollen and she was wearing her wig.

I remember the day that was her funeral. Everyone we knew was going to be there. Daddy said that it would make people sad to us my sister and I there and so he asked us to stay with my Grandma's neighbor and friend. It was pretty boring but she was kind to us.

I remember the day after the funeral. Daddy took us to Disneyland. I don't remember if we had fun or not. That night, as we stayed over at my grandparents house we heard the TV say that Elvis was dead. I said something about a lot of people dying lately. We were already sad and it had nothing to do with Elvis.

I remember lots of TV dinners and that they didn't taste very good.

I remember my Grandma babysitting us everyday so that Daddy could go to work. She came over really early in the morning while I was watching Captain Kangaroo. She made us pancakes everyday. When they were ready she would sing a hymn from church: "All things are ready come to the feast. Come for the table now is spread. Come feast upon the love of God and thou shalt be richly blessed..."

I remember being in bed at night and pretending that Mommy hadn't really died. I pretended that she had just left us and gone to live somewhere else. That would have been sad if it was true but somehow that was not as sad as knowing that she was dead and not ever coming back. It eased the pain in my heart a little tiny bit when I pretended.

I remember Daddy crying a lot. He seemed to get even more sad if I talked about Mommy. So, I didn't do that too much. He was sad enough.

I remember praying to God and telling Him how much I missed my Mommy. I prayed to Him every night. I imagined that prayer was like talking on the telephone with someone. So, first I'd talk to God and then I'd ask Him to let me talk to Mommy. Once I'd ask that, then she could hear that part of my prayer. I thought that telling her things would help but it didn't really work. Talking to Him is what really made me feel better! So, my talks with Mommy became shorter and fewer and my talks with God became longer and longer. I've been talking to Him every since.

"You have been a strength to the needy in his distress." Is. 25:4
"For He Himself has said I will never leave you nor forsake you." Heb.13:5
"Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Is. 41:10


February 25, 2007

Many thanks to Andrew F. who made our "Stitchfoot" blinkie.
I love it. You are talented! We know it wasn't the nicest photo to work with but you made it look cool! : )
Thank you!
-Now if I only I could get my new little blog radio to play their song!
Meant to Live is the ONLY Christian song they happen to have and so it will be the only one available here at the blog. : ) (if it starts working that is)

February 23, 2007

New Idol fanatics and our precious remote

We aren't big TV watchers around here.

Last year the show we watched was American Inventor. Anyone see that? We loved it. It was so much fun! (and educational) Our continuous favorite is Extreme Home Makeover. We love that! But since we go to church on Sunday nights, we miss all but the end. I don't have to even know why the people are getting blessed, I always cry during the last 10 min. of every episode. : )

Now our show is American Idol! By chance we saw the finale last year when Taylor Hicks won and so the kids really wanted to give it a try this season. It's been a lot of fun and we are totally hooked. (The tryouts were so funny. You wonder who told these people they could sing!)

One thing that is an absolute necessity at our house when we do watch it, is a remote! We always assign someone to Righteous Remote Duty. Whenever inappropriate commercials come on (-which is just about every other one, good grief!) Then the person on RRD switches to PBS as fast as they can. Then we find out what bats eat or watch people observing gorillas or something rather dull and safe like that until its time to switch back to our show or there's a decent commercial on. It's a lot of pressure being the RRD guy because sometimes Mom freaks out if we aren't switched over to PBS soon enough. ; )

You would not believe how many remotes we have lost. Do they sell them in bulk at Sam's Club? It makes you wonder if they crawl away or something. If anyone did see American Inventor than you might remember the 'remote leash.' It looked like an ugly guitar strap attached to a remote. It didn't get too far in the competition but I'm telling you, this family needs one. I even bought us a spare and we lost that too! The new rule this week was, no Idol unless we find the remote. Well, the lost was found. Yahoo!
We had a great time seeing which two guys and which two girls were going to be sent home ......and discussing crocodiles that get to be over 22 feet long! : )


February 21, 2007

Our goofy placenta story

Have you ever heard of the terms placental and non-placental?
Well, I never had until today. Our biology lesson on mammals talked about categorizing animals this way. So, this led to an explanation of placentas. And I kept giggling every time I said that word. You see, we have a placenta story in this family (how many people have one of those?) and so I had to share it with Joy, Nathan and Andrew because they'd never heard it and how often to placentas come up in conversation. ; )
(Zach was probably really glad to miss this by doing chemistry)
I told them the story and they totally grossed out and I laughed. (I needed a good laugh)
Now, I'll share it but you may not want to read it if you are eating or about to eat. (especially not if it's ice cream)

When we bought our house, Zachary was 21 mo. old and I was 8 mo. pregnant with baby # 2. The house was small but it had a large fenced in yard and it had the two things that I asked the Lord for: a beautiful tree and a porch swing! That's how we knew that this one was for us and because it was the only one we found in our little price range. ha ha

I was SO happy to have a yard for Zachary! When we were given a housewarming party we made it into a 'landscaping' party! Everyone brought plants, flowers, trees, or clippings from their yard as gifts and then we all planted them. (great fun!)

Well, baby # 2 (Nathan) was going to be born at home. (I have lots of home birthing stories to share in the future)
I heard that some people actually save the placenta after the birth and plant a tree over it. -Good for the tree and a nice reminder of the birth. The tree grows as the baby grows etc.... Sounds kind of weird now, but it seemed kind of sweet to a woman who was THRILLED about having her first house and YARD!

Nathan was born 6 weeks later...
The placenta was put in a couple of plastic shopping bags and stuck in the freezer for us by the midwife.

Well, with a brand new baby and an almost 2 year old to take care of, I didn't give that 'placenta tree' idea another thought! Every once in awhile, my hubby would tease me about it or I would see that bag in our freezer and think-"Is that thing still in there?! Gross!" And I would just leave it in there!

A couple months after the birth, we had a young couple from church over for dinner. They'd just started dating and they were kind of shy around each other. I served ice cream for dessert. When I offered some to this girl, she looked REALLY, REALLY uncomfortable and she declined. (I think her boyfriend had a little bit.)
LATER, I found out that one of my hubby's friends (the biggest practical joker I have ever met) told them: "If they offer you anything from their freezer, be sure to say 'no' because they have a placenta in there!!!"
That poor, poor girl!

Now, if I would have known then what I do today, I could have said "Would you like placental or non-placental ice-cream?" ; ) just kidding!

~ Becky
-who did eventually get rid of it and never saved another one for any form of gardening!

Joy and her new reading glasses. : )

Wednesdays in the Word

I've learned another lesson from 2 Samuel 6 that I'd like to share here.

When we do a good thing, our way (and not God's) then people get hurt. (or die, in Uzzah's case)

David was on a great mission. He was bringing the ark of the Lord to Jerusalem but whether out of excitement or ignorance or whatever, he wasn't doing it God's way...
They were suppose to have two wooden poles put through the two golden rings on each side and it was to be carried on the shoulders of the Levites. In this chapter, they are carrying it on an ox cart! The ox stumbles and Uzzah reaches out to steady it and he dies on the spot.

This passage has been used to portray God as this big bully in the sky waiting to toast you if you sin. People say, "Well, Uzzah was only trying to help and God struck him dead! See, you better not sin!" Well, God isn't cruel. He is just. If He gives instructions on how to do something and we don't do it that way, then we are at risk for all manner of consequences. It says that "Uzzah was killed for his error." The side note in my Bible says that "error" here translates into "irreverence." I imagine David felt awful! This was his mission and he hadn't followed directions and now a man was dead because of it. They now had a funeral to prepare for. So, David who is "angry" and "afraid" (v.8-9) decides to abandon this plan of bringing the ark to Jerusalem. They take it to the house of Obed-Edom which must have been near by. You can almost picture David saying "Keep this here for me and by the way, you don't want to touch it!" Maybe David expected to hear that Obed-Edom's wife dusted it and died or that one of his kids ran into it and was killed. That was not the case! The report that got back to David was that Obed-Edom was getting totally blessed by its presence in his home. Obviously, he didn't touch it out of obedience and reverence and because of it, he was getting his socks blessed off. It says that "The Lord blessed the house of Obed-Edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God."

I found myself doing a 'good' thing the other day, but the way I was going about it wasn't His way and I did not have a peace in my spirit about the whole thing. Zachary was with me and had to listen to me talk to myself : ) (I do that a lot) and try to figure out how I got in such a mess. This story came to mind and reminded me that people get hurt when I do things out of His will no matter how 'good' they seem.


February 20, 2007

His Faithfulness

Today, I am celebrating His faithfulness to heal!
Last night, I felt like I was really coming down with something and within the hour I was really sick. I felt like I'd caught the latest 'bug' and it was a doozy! My hubby prayed hard for me and it was powerful.
I didn't feel any better at the time I went to bed, but at 2:00 AM I knew that God had moved on my behalf. I no longer felt like I'd be in bed for 4 days!
In fact, I woke up with just a stuffy nose and the remains of a sore throat. I've experienced healing for 'big' things but today I was so touched that He cares about the little illnesses that get in the way and rock our households. Not to mention sparing me another trip to the doctor. Yahoo!
It reminded me of what a blessing it is to get out of bed everyday and serve my family.
Mk. 11:24 "Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them."

February 17, 2007

More blood and another set of STITCHES in the same week!

Believe it or not, another one of my kids needed stitches this week. Am I setting a world record yet?

It was all my fault. I was throwing some food in the crock pot for dinner, because we were about to go on a field trip, then to a science fair and then have company for dinner.
I took the kitchen trash bag out of the can and tied it up and set it by the front door making a mental note to myself that I needed to be the one to take it out to the can. It contained a broken plate and it might cut Andrew who takes out the trash at our house.
After I went back to cooking, we all hear Nathan screaming in pain.
He had come around the corner (probably at high speeds, because he is blessed with EXTRA energy) and grazed the bag and it sliced his foot terribly. Unfortunately, my hubby wasn't home to help me this time. (see this post) This cut was on the top of his foot and about two inches long and 5 mm deep.

Here's what I have learned this week:

-A good (restocked) first aid kit is a must!

-Giving birth naturally, (four times) does not give me extra brownie points when it comes courage at the sight of blood, which is really too bad. I went weak in the knees!

-Trash bags with broken glass need to go immediately to the trash can outside!!!!!!

-Everyone loves TLC and compassion even if they aren't injured and they deserve it because they are so loved. ; )
Thankfully, this didn't happen after hours, because I think I would've been WAY too embarrassed to be seen in that office again for another cut that needed stitches twice in the same week! We were able to go to our regular doctor. I love, love, love our doctor's office. Ninety percent of the people who work in the office are Christians and it is a really nice atmosphere.
Nathan's cut was something to behold and so he had his own little crowd of doctors and nurses around him to see it. He is Mr. Personality, if I haven't mentioned that before, and enjoyed showing it to them.
He didn't enjoy the shots to make the area numb before the stitches! I found out that my 12 yr. old still wanted a hand to hold, actually to SQUEEZE -during the pain. (unlike my big 14 yr. old) That was fun for this mom.
Nathan watched the process and was very impressed. He told the doctor "You've got skills!"(that's a line from Napoleon Dynamite and we are big fans of that movie!)
As she explained the procedure to me, I just nodded in agreement hoping that my kids would not mention that I had already been through this before 5 days ago. (just because that whole knife throwing thing is a little hard to explain) The kids did tell her, but thankfully she didn't ask how that accident happened and she remarked that we must be a rather klutzy family, which was OK by me. ; )

After this event, I had to go and help judge our home school group's science fair. I tried to get out of it because I was still so flustered but the ladies had already left for the fair and I couldn't get a hold of them. When we got there, I settled my limping boys into chairs and went to help. It was SO much fun. Those cute kids and their projects were so awesome! I really enjoyed hearing about their experiments and encouraging them by telling them what a great job they'd done.

Here is my science project for the week:

Question: Is it possible for any other members of this family to need stitches this week?

My Hypothesis:
No, I do not think anyone else will need them. (PLEASE LORD!)

My Data:
Zach- 5 huge stitches on Sunday
Nathan- 6 huge stitches on Friday

I will let you know the Conclusion of this project next week. ; )
I hope my hypothesis is proved right!

We are really big Switchfoot fans around here, so I wanted to take a picture of their feet and call it something like "Stitchfoot." But, my kids think that's 'lame' and my hubby is sure you don't want to see a picture of their stitches! : )


February 15, 2007

*my blog defining day*

Today I was really far from being the ideal mom. I have lots of those days. I've just decided that you aren't going to have to read about them here. ; )
The Lord used today to help me to define what I want this blog to be like. First I have to say, that this family has it's share of 'stuff' and I hope you never think we don't. I also hope that you don't think from reading it that I'm trying to portray us as having it 'all together' all the time. We certainly don't and if we do at all, it's only by the grace of God. I've decided I just want to focus on what is good, lovely, admirable and praiseworthy. So, here is what I hope this blog will contain in the future:

~Our fun family memories, stories, cute sayings....because for goodness sake, I am at least 8 yrs. behind on my scrap books. : ) I hope these posts will be fun to read.

~I'll keep doing my 'Wednesdays in the Word' posts, in which I share something from my favorite book of all time, the Bible. Usually what I share here is something I have already shared with my kids or am about to.

~A new set of posts entitled 'His Faithfulness.' These will be posts that will share the minor and the miraculous things God is or has done in our lives. They may be trivial or monumental but whatever the case they will focus on Him and His power at work today. (I will post some of my favorite 'biggies' from the past as well)

And by the way, I think blogging is a blast! What a fun hobby this has turned out to be! My teen thinks I've turned into a 'techno-woman.' (I'll take that as a compliment)
I'm really entering the 21st century this week since my mom gave me a Tracfone. ha ha
I told my dad I just need an ipod and I'll be all caught up. (I know I'd have to have a better phone to be like really caught up) The only place I could listen to an ipod uninterrupted would be the bathtub and I don't think that would work out too well. : )

I have a question. Can blogs play music? If they can then I've got a theme song and I'd want a button that you could push to hear it. (Chris Tomlin's song "King of Glory") Anyone know if that is possible? I can't even LINK yet, so if that was possible I'd still be out of luck! Now if I had an ipod I would absolutely have to have this song on it: "Change" by Phil Joel. It is my newest favorite!!!! You've got to hear it! When he sings "J-E-S-U-S" you just want to worship!

Anyway, I got way off topic here. I really hope that
Blessed with olive plants around my table will be a blessing to anyone in the blogosphere who happens to drop by. I hope that it "Declares His loving kindness in the morning and His faithfulness at night." (Psalm 92)


February 14, 2007

To my Love

Happy Valentine's Day to my wonderful husband:

"If ever two were one,
then surely we,
If ever man were loved by wife,
then thee.

If ever wife was happy in a man,
compare with me,
ye women, if you can."

~Anne Bradstreet

February 12, 2007

the sweetness of Andrew

Zach is on crutches this week and in need of some extra help at times...
Andrew asked him this:

"With your permission, can I be your servant boy this week?"

(How come I never get asked that question!? ; )
Do I have to be on crutches?!)

Later, he presented Zach and Nathan with Valentines Day gifts labeled to:

"the best brothers in the world"

(when I asked him if he had something for 'the best sister in the world' he said "Mom, I don't have that kind of cash!")

During school, we studied Greek mythology, Troy and the Trojan Horse. While reading about Helen, "the most beautiful woman in the world," Andrew interrupted and said:

"Helen, couldn't have been the most beautiful woman in the world because Mom is!"

(Oh, melt my heart! Isn't seven a wonderful age?! I'll be treasuring that in my heart for a long time!) : )


Blood and more blood

We had some drama at our house yesterday...

We invited a neighbor over for lunch after church, that we don't know very well. My hubby has been trying to get to know him and become friends because we know for a fact that he needs Jesus.

Joy came in the kitchen and let me know that Zach was in the bathroom and that he was 'really hurt.' I found him in there, looking pale and grim and insisting that I not scream. (not a good sign!) I did really good. I think having company in the next room helped.

We have a target like the ones they use in FCF (Frontiersmen Camping Fellowship) in the backyard. He had been practicing knife throwing with the boy next door. If they aren't able to 'stick' the knife in the wood then it usually bounces off and hits the ground. Well, Zach threw it and it bounced and came back towards him. He moved out of the way and it sliced into his heel. (he should have had shoes on!) Anyway, we don't know if he was standing too close or if he used more force than usual, but we do know that we are done with knife throwing practice around here for a good long while. (see 'Camping in your slippers' to read why he has such a strange hobby) : )

My hubby handles blood and emergencies like this much better than I do. He remembered to actually pray for him, which I didn't. After he did, Zach got some color in his face and stopped looking like he was in shock and going to pass out. Thank you, Lord. My hubby said we needed to go to the ER for stitches and so I made our guest a plate to take home and promised him that next time we invited him over, we'd actually eat together. : )

The gash in his heel was so deep. It was gruesome.

Then our next door neighbors (who are more like family than friends) came to see the wound since their son had been with Zach when it happened. They were so sweet. They brought over more gauze and offered to take Nathan, Joy and Andrew home with them.

We decided to go to one of those 'after hours' pediatric places which are so much nicer and have a shorter wait. (I hope all future incidents in the raising o our four kiddos happen on Sundays or 'after hours' from now on) What a cute, happy place it was. (This was where we brought Joy five years ago with her broken finger)
Zach was starting to wonder if he was a little too old to be treated there because of the decor, the videos playing and the other patients all being under the age of 8. : )

We only got a few raised eye brows over Zach's knife throwing explanation so, my hubby spared them his speech explaining FCF. His gash made more than one nurse gasp. The doctor said he definitely needed stitches. As we waited for the anesthetic to kick in, we took turns guessing how much this event would cost. (We are considered 'self pay' even though we are apart of Samaritan Ministries. We are responsible for paying for the first $300 of a medical need and then the shares of other members pay the rest, up to $100,000.) Just walking in was $180.00 and worth every penny if you ask me!

I made myself watch the doctor do the stitches even though it was stomach turning, it was fascinating! (kind of like owl pellets! ha ha) John laughed at me and asked if I could see OK. The last time Zach had stitches he was 8 and I didn't watch,I just held his hand. Now, he's 14 and 6" taller than I am, so he didn't need to hold my hand. : )

After that, he received a lesson on how to walk, sit and get up again with crutches. When the nurse said there was no way he could ride a school bus or carry a back pack for 5 days we were relieved to be homeschoolers. When she started going on about how he would need to find a nice girl that would carry that back pack he made sure to let her know he home schooled.

By the grace of God, all three of our guesses as to the fee, were wrong! The doctor told the nurse that he wanted to take 50% off of the bill! What a blessing! We will not need to post this with Samaritan! yay! God is so good to us!

Zach will get his stitches out in 10 days. He will have to be on crutches for 5 days. This morning, we found out the hard way that he just shouldn't even enter the kitchen! The tile was wet and the crutches came out from under him. (another SCARY episode) Good thing he's a courageous guy with a high pain tolerance level.

Andrew realized that it won't be any problem to run away from Zach this week. ; ) That's a good thing. Unfortunately, Zach had to prove to us that he can actually clear a room on crutches pretty quickly. ugh! (almost another SCARY episode) Nathan is threatening to hide his crutches since Zach broke the "crutches are not a weapon" rule. It's going to be a fun week, I can tell. My hubby says I'll probably get plenty of blog material from all this, but I have a feeling I may be too busy to post it!


February 10, 2007

A wink and smile and pile of books

Don't you just love, love, love when God does just the littlest things that show you:

~He knows about what you care about
~He's intimately involved in your life
~He's guiding and directing your footsteps

It's so fun when something happens that reminds me of those things. It's just like getting a wink and a smile from an earthly dad, over something the two of you understand but few others know about.

My "wink and a smile" today was really insignificant in the big scope of things but it was just one of those things that gave me that feeling of being loved by my Abba (daddy).

I kept feeling like I should make a library trip. (maybe that was just a homeschooling syndrome or something!) ; ) But, I don't normally go on Saturdays and it's not a place I normally take visiting relatives! I went and dear, sweet Anita came along with me and I showed her the cute homes in the historic district along the way.

As we walked into the library they announced:
"Folks, our book sale has now ended. All books in that room are now FREE. (I love that word) Help yourself to as many as you'd like."
(Pinch me! I'm dreaming!)
It took great self control to act nonchalant about this! And I might not have pulled it off, if I'd have come alone! ha ha

Now, the catch was that you had to be quicker at your choosing than the library staff was at picking them up and boxing them. (thankfully, they weren't packing at tremendous speeds or anything!) So, here's what I came home with:

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers
Sir Walter Scott by Rob Roy
She who Laughs Lasts! Laugh-out-loud Stories From Today's Best Known Women of Faith
Exploring Spanish: Activity Book
Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis
The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
one Hardy boys book and two Nancy Drew books
two historical fiction books for girls
Life Training: Devotions for Parents and Teens by Joe White (Focus on the Family)
It's Perfectly True by Hans Christian Andersen
And because I love old books, one about Christmas with Norman Rockwell illustrations

~I stopped there because I didn't want to look like an obnoxious book hog in front of my new mother in law and that's about all I could carry. : )

No, they weren't books I needed, but it sure seemed like another one of the million ways that my daddy in Heaven was reminding me how loved I am.


February 9, 2007

The Newlyweds

Grand Dad is here from CO with his lovely new bride, Anita. We were all so blessed to be at their wedding in October. They are just giddy in love! It is really sweet! And we are so happy for Grand Dad.

They gave the kids handmade flutes they bought at the Ten Thousand Villages while they were in Orlando. So, the whole neighborhood heard our kids playing never ending renditions of 'Mary had a Little Lamb' for 2 hours this afternoon. : )

-Maybe that's why they felt the need to go to their hotel. ha ha.

We had a nice dinner out tonight and came home and visited around the chimneia.

Hopefully not scarred for life

I keep picturing my children as adults, with homes of their own and whenever they hear the phrase "having company" they all begin to twitch uncontrollably! And start mumbling about what their mom put them through as children..."the stress, the grumpiness, the frantic cleaning...it was terrible." They will probably decide that they are allergic to hospitality. ; )
My hubby says it's a phenomenon he's only just beginning to understand. (after 15 years of marriage)

I go to great (more like crazy) lengths when we are having company.
I don't freak out and clean like a maniac quiet as bad for local company just the out of state kind. (no one who is from another country better ever visit us!) : ) Nathan always reminds me 'that it's not like the President is coming over or something!' Yes, for the sake of our sanity, that's a good thing!

And the funny thing is, once the company is in the door and everything looks perfect for, lets say, just 5 minutes, I'm OK if the place gets destroyed in the meantime because that means that we are all having fun!

I'll tell you more about my out of state company tomorrow because I'm really excited and of course, I have to go and CLEAN some more!


February 8, 2007

Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart

I am amazed!

Saturday, the kids prayed for something that seemed highly unlikely and in the natural, pretty much financially impossible.

On Monday, we got an email from a friend (who didn't know about our discussions lately or that prayer) offering to make that prayer a reality for a fraction of the cost!

God blows my mind sometimes. The way He takes care of His children is really something! : )

"with God all things are possible." Mt. 19:26

February 7, 2007

Wednesdays in the Word

I've been enjoying 2 Samuel 6 this week.

I love, love, love David's passion in worshipping the Lord as he brings the ark of the covenant to the tabernacle in Jerusalem. "Then David danced before the Lord with all his might" v.14
and "King David (was) leaping and whirling before the Lord." v.16
Of course, he couldn't do all that in his kingly robe, so he had thrown that off. He then looked like a commoner and that really made his wife upset. It says that when she saw him out there dancing and leaping "she despised him in her heart."
After blessing every woman and man with a loaf of bread, (I would not have wanted to be David's baker on that day!) a piece of meat and a cake of raisins, he went home "to bless his household." I thought that was sweet but the welcome he received from Michal wasn't sweet. She let him have it. His answer to her is awesome and I can't read read it without hearing
David Crowder's version of Undignified in my head.
David told her "I will be even more undignified than this and will be humble in my own sight."

Here are the song lyrics (you could hear a smidge of it on iTunes)

"I will dance
I will sing
to be mad for my King
Nothing Lord
is hindering
this passion in my soul

And I'll become
even more undignified than this
some may say
it's foolishness
but I'll become even more undignified than this
leave my pride
by my side
And I'll become
even more undignified than this....
It's all for you my Lord!"

Isn't that great?! I love the "leave my pride by my side" part. That is hard to do. I used to care too much about being dignified during worship. It took a really low place in life with some painful circumstances to help me start to change. Focusing on wanting more of Him and caring much, much less about what anyone thinks -is the place to be! That is the sweet by product of horrible trials! They change you. And through them, we learn to "love much."
But blessings have a way of lulling me into complacency. Desperation and complacency don't mix. Oh, how I wish I had the same level of desperation for God when life is great. And that I would be "even more undignified than this."


February 6, 2007

Been there, got the t-shirt!

Here is a plug for the girl talk blog.

If you get excited about Biblical womanhood, courting, modesty, honoring husbands, raising kids etc... then you'll want to check it out. It is written by a mother and her 3 grown daughters. (all married to men in ministry) Her husband and their father founded a church and mentored Joshua Harris (who wrote I Kissed Dating Good-bye) and gave the church to him to pastor it into the next generation.

On this particular day, they were talking about new ways to honor and cherish husbands and gave a link for this t-shirt. Don't you love it?! I bought one and wore it on our anniversary! It was a lot of fun. I still wear it and it's my favorite.
My hubby always feels blessed and almost every time I wear it, he thanks me for loving him so much. : )
So, if you are looking for a fun new way to say 'I love you' try wearing it on the front of your shirt!


In case these links don't work as I'm still getting the hang of this, here is the web site for the t-shirt: davidnasser.com
and girl talk is on the side bar. This article was in March 2006

Here is mine so that you can see it.
Don't mind that it's wet and wrinkled!
To see a dry, ironed one go to
; )

February 5, 2007

More on football?!

Lest, I sound like a football fan, I better clarify that
I'm not. I'm just outnumbered by males! : )

Last night, the 'mom' in me wanted them to postpone the game, get those referees raincoats and pray that no one would get sick!

Here's what I have learned about football: it's all about the food!

My hubby told me his perfect Super Bowl meal plan weeks ahead of time because -it's all about the food!

Most of the season, I worked on a quilt while they watched football. Once in awhile, Joy and I would make them some fun football snacks because -it's all about the food!

I got a big kick out of one of our sons last night. He is our biggest football fan and nothing happens on that field that he doesn't completely understand. (which amazes me!)
Well, we were only 10 min. into the game when he said:

"Hey! When are the women going to start cooking!?!"

It's all about the food, I tell you. ; )

(and someday I better warn his future wife about this)


A testimony I want to have

Congratulations to Tony Dungy and the Colts!

I loved what he said about being proud to make it to the Super Bowl by being "a Christian coach and doing things the Lord's way." Awesome!

And what a testimony!- To be a coach who never raises his voice and never swears. How cool is that?!

My prayer: "Lord, as I coach my kids through life, make me a mother who never raises her voice!"

February 4, 2007

Football and more football

My guys cannot wait to watch the Super Bowl tonight!!!!!!!! (GO COLTS!)

On Friday nights, Carlos (see post: our amazing friend) comes over and it is Game Night around here. This Friday night we had a movie night instead and we watched Facing the Giants. (I loved it. I think I cried 4 times!)

These are my favorite quotes from the movie that apply to all areas of life. (not just football)

"For the rest of your life I want you to remember that you held nothing back. You did not quit."

"Tell me what's impossible when God's on your side?"

"Leave everything out on the field."

"Stay sharp, stay focused, play hard and honor God."

"Your job is to do your best and leave the rest up to God."

"As long as we honor God, nothing is impossible. Honor God. Give it your all. Whether we win or not we'll give Him the glory."

"If you walk around defeated, so will they."

"Attitudes are like the aroma of your heart."

"God can do whatever He wants to, however He wants to and He chooses to work through us..."

"Don't leave this field having done less than your best."

If you haven't seen it, you'll enjoy it. (some of the acting is a little weak, but it's still a great movie!)


February 3, 2007

Food or books?

You know you are tired when:

You are about to swipe your library card to buy groceries. ; )

Eating Egypt

Our history assignment (in Mystery of History vol.1)
was to make a cake map! (vanilla box cake with vanilla frosting)

This was to wrap up our study of Ancient Egypt. (do you hear my kids clapping in the background? They are tired of all things pertaining to Egypt and are ready to move on)
Here's what we did:

-We typed out the names of the cities and bodies of water on the computer and printed them out.
-We cut and taped them each to a toothpick
-We practiced our locations first on blank outline maps while the cake was cooling
-After frosting it, we added blue sprinkles for the bodies of water (I was out of food coloring)
-Everyone helped stick the toothpicks in their proper location
Voila, eatable Egypt!I don't think any of us will ever forget what Egypt looks like after this! The kids thought the best part, of course, was eating Egypt.
I was beginning to think that we should eat every country we study! But, it just hit me, not all countries are rectangular in shape and well, that could be a problem... : )


February 2, 2007

The Olive Plants

Our precious olive plants:

Zachary age 14

Nathan age 12

Joy age 10

Andrew age 7

an E-filing Blessing!

I just had to give the Lord a literal shout of praise while filing our taxes last night. -And it wasn't even because of the return. (but don't get me started on how much I love, love, love that!) : )
It was the goodness of God that just hit me while I was
clicking "no, "no," "no," and "no."

-Did you have any casualities or thefts?
-Did you or your spouse retire early due to a disability? (this reminded me of the high ladders my hubby often works on)
-Did you pay alimony?
-Did you have any legal fees?
-Do you have dependent children not living with you?

The enemy would like to "steal, kill and destroy" (John 10:10) our lives and families but God is greater and the proof is in the "no's!"
Thank you Jesus!
"I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly."

February 1, 2007


If you'd like some encouragement Sarah at
has written a beautiful post about motherhood that will bless you.