October 31, 2006


I came across this quote. I like it so I thought I'd share...

"Compromise, if not the spice of life, is its solidity. It is what makes nations great and marriages happy." Phyllis McGinley

October 30, 2006

morning routine and a funny

This morning, we tried a new routine. Neither my daughter nor I are morning people. We are quite grouchy until that last little bit of sleep has left us. And sometimes that takes longer than the average bear to happen. When you put us together in the morning, it's a combustible combination. So this morning, my husband woke her up as he left for work. This gave her a chance to wake up on her own and get a shower before she had to come into contact with me. And it gave me a chance to wake up and have a few minutes peace before I had to come into contact with her. Don't get me wrong - we love each other to pieces. But when we are both groggy in the morning, we tear each other to pieces. Not good! It was going really well this morning! But before she left, she started with that tween attitude and spouting disrespect left and right. It makes me crazy. After a weekend at her dad's house, she always tests the limits for about a day when she gets back. I guess today is the day. I lost my temper and got really mad. She broke down and lost it herself. So much for the good morning...But I, being the responsible adult I am (ahem..), calmed myself down and explained that I would not tolerate the garbage attitude. I gave her a huge hug and sent her on her way, glad that I had rescued the morning and put it back on track.

So, my daughter left for school and I sat down to check my email. My son started whining and decided to find me. Step...step...step...down the steps he came. "Hold you, Mommy." So I did. And as I sat there holding my son, looking out the window at the beautiful display of God's colors, I thought about how I had held both my little ones this morning. About how this time will pass and they won't find the same comfort in my arms as they did today. And I was filled with joy at the blessings of the morning...and in the back of my heart, I hurt a little for all the world that I can't shield them from forever. And then the phone rang.

My daughter missed the bus. (Can you tell me why a child stands at the bus stop for 15 minutes past the time that the bus is supposed to come? And then goes across the street to the neighbors to call me to tell me she missed the bus? We only live about 10 houses from the bus stop!) So, the tranquil moment was over and we were on a race to get her to school. Not an easy task with two little boys and a bookbag big enough to qualify as another little boy. But we did it and she's off learning all kinds of things I don't even remember!

Last night, we went to a Fall Festival at a local church. My husband's boss invited us. It was really neat for the kids. Lots of games, food, a pony ride, corn maze, and candy. My son had a blast. I just have to tell you a conversation I overhead. We were headed to the hot dog line and it was long. My usually eloquent husband says...

"Poop. It's a long line."

To which my son replies,

"Daddy, do you need to go potty?"

"No, why?"

"Yes, you do. You said poop."

We've been really working on the potty training so this struck me as hilarious. Preoccupation with poop has started in our house and from what I understand it lasts a long time with boys. Yeah for me!

October 27, 2006

little tikes catalog

Today I was sorting through the mail and my son found a Little Tikes catalog. All of a sudden, I am being bombarded with catalogs. Usually this makes me very happy. I am a catalog/online shopper, especially around the holidays. But this year, it just frustrates me because I know there will be tons of cool things I want to get people and no funds to do so. I've been avoiding even looking at the catalogs.

Anyway, I digress. If I had been paying closer attention, I would have found a way to divert his attention from the catalog. It bugs me how much marketing is targeted at kids. Commercials, catalogs, cereal boxes...it teaches our kids to be greedy. But he found it and it is getting close to Christmas and all. I'm sure I'll have grandparents and the like asking what he would like for Christmas. So we looked through it together (many times) and on the second or third time through, I asked what his favorite thing was.

"All of it, mommy."

"Yes, I know you like all of it. But what is your favorite, favorite thing?"

"I need all of it."

Let me just add here that this was a catalog of the full line of Little Tikes stuff...or at least all the big ticket items. There is a Thomas the Train bed, a Cars movie bed, and FIVE other car beds. There are all the basketball hoops and baseball tees and football paraphenalia. (Hey, I just spelled that right on the first try! Yeah me!) There are also all (or a big number) of the big playhouses that they sell. And he needs all of it. All 7 beds plus everything else. Right...

Well, this set me into the mommy teaching a lesson mode. My child is not going to be greedy. Heaven forbid! So I decided to try to make him understand the difference between want and need. What was I thinking?!

"You know, son, you really just want all of it. We only need food to eat, a warm place to sleep, and clothes to wear." (I was trying to stay simple, gimme a break!)

"No, I need toys to play with."

"Okay, you need toys to play with but look at all these toys you already have. You just want more toys to play with."

"No, mommy. I need these new toys. Right here. These toys."

When he switches to the one or two word sentences, I know he has finished listening to me and will continue, in an increasing loud or whiny voice, until I concede and see his way. So, I cut my losses and tried another route.

"I understand you want those toys, buddy. Maybe we'll have to show Daddy and tell him you want them for Christmas."

"Need. Tell Daddy."

Oh, boy. I give up.

October 25, 2006

super secret club

My father-in-law is being visited by the same frog in his throat as my son. Unfortunately, it has taken his voice. He's a college professor so this has to be hard for him. All that's left is a bit of a whisper. And he is using that sparingly to save what is there for class.

I guess I should preface the rest of the story by telling you that my son and his grandpa are good buddies. They love to spend time together. They are the absolute cutest when they are piled on the floor playing. I don't know who has a better time. They both have a blast.

So, yesterday, my son got a chance to spend time with his grandpa. My son was exhausted from a long day and not what you would say easy to get along with. Bless my father-in-law's silent heart because he took on the little man. They crawled around on the floor and played. The greatest part was when my son would hear his grandpa say something. He would get real quiet so he could hear the whisper. And then, much to our amusement, he would whisper back. The entire conversation was held in whispers. I have no idea what they said to each other. Maybe they are going to take over the world. You know, it wouldn't be bad if everyone whispered in this world. The only child in me would be really happy about that. Anyway, it was so sweet to see those two. I mean, it always is but this time my heart just melted.

Maybe I'll start my own club...the Melted Heart Club. Seems whenever my kids aren't driving me up a wall, they are melting my heart. Wanna join? :)

October 22, 2006

this and that

You know, I'm not the typical soccer mom. I don't get excited thinking about sitting in the increasingly cold early weekend morning, watching a team full of moms and dads scream like their child's existance depends on the outcome of the game. Even if one of them is my mom. And it doesn't really interest me if the kids make it to the tournament or even if they win it. As long as they are having fun and getting much needed exercise, I'm happy. So the fact that yesterday was the last game for the season doesn't really affect me much. Except that after SIX years of playing, my precious daughter FINALLY gets it. The ball - the one with the black and white hexagons on it - is supposed to stay in the control of your team until you get to the other end of field and then you kick the crap out of it and pray it goes between the goal posts. She GETS it. So, maybe I am a little sad that the season is over. I actually did get into a couple of their games and I felt that fire of pride in my chest when she had a good play. But, there's always next year. (And I'm sure I'll forget how cold it was yesterday morning by then...)

I spent some time at church yesterday evening. There was a group of people from Michigan who were traveling through on their way home from doing some Katrina work. They were just the sweetest bunch of people. We fed them a meal and allowed them to stay overnight in our church. We had an awesome, impromptu singing session and they were praising the Lord! It was very touching.

My son is sick. Not the down and out sick. Not even the sneezing, sniffling sick. Just that change of season sick when his voice gets all weird and he's nice and cranky. To top that off, he had his first trip to the dentist for a cleaning. He did great being such a big boy. I asked if it tickled and he puffed his little chest out and said, "A wittle bit." Ah, the pride. But see, we've been having a big time struggle at my house. (Well, two if you count the DIAPERS that he REFUSES to shake but I can only do one struggle at a time! Any ideas for the whole potty training thing?!) The dentist said we HAVE to get rid of the pacifier. I've always been one of the heartless, cold turkey moms that just takes it away. And we did that once with the pacifier but then he got sick and I couldn't take it and I gave it back. Now I'm paying for my weakness because he is NOT wanting to give it up. The hygenist at the dentist suggested cutting a hole in the tip of the pacifier. "He won't want it then...at all." Yeah, right. "I'm so sad my paci is broke, Mommy." And he took it anyway. So now, I'm wondering what to do next. I can't take the screaming that ensues when I just take it. I know, I know. Quit being a wimp. But this is my baby. My last baby. I can just wait until tomorrow (or the next day or the next day....) to take it, right?

Since I'm in that kind of mood, I'll make a book recommendation...but moms, get the tissues out. You'll need them.
Karen Kingsbury "Let Me Hold You Longer"
It makes a great gift. And if you like it, it originally comes from her Redemption series which is awesome too.

There may be some changes to my responsibilities at work and I'd like to ask for your prayers. I don't even know why God has me back at work right now (although my checkbook knows why!) but I'm there for a reason. Jesus says that everything is for a reason and I'll trust in that. Knowing that He has my path already paved relieves the pressure. Your prayers to remind me of that when I try to take over would be appreciated. Thanks!

October 16, 2006

momtime getaway

I went to the MomTime Getaway with Lisa Whelchel this past weekend. I've been wanting to post about it ever since I got back but I just couldn't find the right words. I mean, I anticipated having a good time. I went with two friends that I just adore. I got to have a little "me" time. What was there not to like? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! Actually, Lisa blew me away.

Unfortunately, I guess I stereotyped her a bit based on her character Blair from "The Facts of Life". I have read a few of her books and I know she says she is nothing like Blair. But I watched her faithfully as Blair for a long time and I really didn't like Blair. But let me tell you, Lisa is no Blair. She is the most humble, down-to-earth, on fire for Christ mom you have ever met. I was continually amazed.

I was so glad that God saw it fit for me to be at this conference. I was disappointed that it went so fast. Lisa was one of those people that just radiates the love of Christ. You crave their presence because you know God is there. Does that make sense? I told you I was having a hard time finding the words. She gave very applicable examples of demonstrating the grace and mercy of Jesus when you discipline. But she did so in a way that said she was just in the trenches of motherhood beside us. Not uppity at all.

But I guess my most surprising revelation about Lisa was her preaching. She could bring it! And, like my friend said, she didn't water it down at all. She acknowledged Satan wanting to take hold of all the good in our lives and she shot him down with Scripture. She gave concrete examples of the grace of Jesus Christ. She was full of prayer for us, for our kids, for the world. I felt very blessed to be prayed for by Lisa. She got to the heart of it and I felt changed. I felt empowered. I felt closer to God. And I felt relief that I don't have to be perfect. Only in my imperfection, can God work His perfection. What a blessing that is.

So even with these few paragraphs, I am still at a loss for words to say exactly how touching this conference was. I didn't expect any life-changing, soul-wretching feelings to come from this weekend. I think it's when we least expect it that God rains the grace down on us.

Oh, and I'm green with envy at the ladies that get to hear Lisa's encouragement all the time in her MomTime group. I know a few of them are in this bloggy community because I stumbled upon them through Lisa's site. I guess I'll just gather my encouragement from the other Godly ladies that I've found on the world wide web. There are many great ones out there. But, if you ever get the chance to hear Lisa speak, RUN there. It will bless you greatly.

October 13, 2006

sweet souls

Another post for my sidebar...I'll update as is needed.

I've wanted to have a memorial place to always remember those kind souls that have gone to be with Jesus. I'm a list kinda girl and I want to honor these people with a list. I look forward to the big ole party in Heaven someday.

Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the time you gave us with these special people. We know that they are with you and that they want no more. Still, we miss them. We carry them in our hearts every day.

Sweet souls I hope to see in heaven:

Peggy K. (1992)
Arthur L. (1998)
Shannon N. (2001)
Grova V. (2005)
Alma S. (2006)
Amy W. (2007)
Eddie L. (2008)

my angels

I've been asked what angels I have so I decided to make a list. I'm linking this in my sidebar and then I can update it whenever I get a new one! : )

A LIST OF MY Demdaco Willow Tree ANGELS

Angel of Learning

Angel of the Kitchen

Guardian Angel

Angel's Embrace


Angel of Strength

Angel of Warmth


Love of Learning

friday's feast #115 (#9)

Approximately how many hours per week do you spend reading other blogs?
I used to read a bunch more than I do now. Now I follow about ten blogs and they don't all post every day so it's manageable. Maybe three hours a week.

Your community wants everyone to give one thing to put into a time capsule. What item would you choose to include?
Probably a family picture.

What is the most interesting tourist attraction you've ever visited?
I guess I will say Niagara Falls because it looks so much bigger and grand in person.

Main Course
If you could give an award to anyone for anything, who would it be and what would the award be titled?
Man, these questions get harder and harder for me. My award would be for the World's Cutest Kids and would of course, go to my kids. Because everyone thinks their kids are the cutest, right? And because my son is wearing his Spiderman shirt and looks adorable. My daughter was really worried about her outfit today and looked very cute when she left for school.

What do you think your favorite color reveals about your personality?
My favorite colors are blue and purples (look around at my blog and you'll see what I mean). I think they reveal that I crave peace and calm. And that I cannot wait to retire and live by the blue water!

To learn more about Friday's Feast, click here.
To get the questions and participate, click here.

October 11, 2006

catchin' up with random thoughts...

Columbus Day was a holiday for bankers and postal workers. Which means that Tuesday was chaotic in post offices and banks. Or at least that's my theory. I can attest for the banks. I had to work. After not having been a teller in years, I've been filling in as one as needed. It's hard. My back is still hurting today from standing all day. I'm not as young as I used to be. :)

My daughter has joined the knitting club. And she actually has been knitting, not just socializing. Because we all know that at 10, it's all about being with your friends. I am still struggling to figure out how she grew up so fast. And why little girls in general are growing up so fast. I know it's the society we live in and the awful culture of our television. But even standing in the way of that as best I can seems not good enough. It's compounded by her having two families. He seems oblivious to the evils that hound her every day. Without a second thought, he feeds into it by buying every whim. Instant gratification. Erroneously giving the message that material things fill the soul and bring happiness. It's an uphill road I travel to level things out. I only pray I will win this battle. Of all battles, this is the one I want to win.

My son spent a wonderful day with a friend of mine last week (while I went on a field trip with lots of loud fifth graders, but I digress...). They went to the library, played train, and stopped by Goodwill. He fell in love with this thermal Spiderman shirt. It has little mesh "wings" that attach from under each arm to each side of the shirt. He wants to be called Spidey. The funniest thing for me is that he doesn't even know who Spiderman is. Daddy tried to show him how to shoot webs from his hands and although impressed, he didn't get the concept at all. He asked me what Spiderman does. I told him he uses his web power to help people in trouble around the city. (Work with me here, I didn't play with Spiderman stuff - I was a He-man and Matchbox kind of girl). He wanted to know if Spiderman was bad. I told him no.
"But kinda like of, right?"
"No, not at all."
"Yes! He! IS!"
I guess every little boy wants his hero to have some dangerous, bad boy in him. So I picked my battle and it wasn't this one!

Friday afternoon, I leave with two friends to go to the MomTime Getaway with Lisa Whelchel in Lexington, Kentucky. I am really excited to be around other moms. I haven't been away in a while so it will be nice. I will miss my husband like crazy and my kids too, but sometimes a mom's just gotta get away. To gain perspective. To recharge. To realize what is important. I think it is a little ironic that my time away is to go to a seminar about being a mom. But I am looking forward to spending time with my friends too.

I got the results from my laproscopy a couple of weeks ago. My options aren't all that great. The details aren't worth putting out there (you know, out in the wild blue yonder of bloggyville) but if you've been there, you know. We haven't made any decisions but will need to soon. Please keep us in your prayers. I am frustrated and I'm not a really nice person when I feel out of control or when I'm in pain. Both apply right now.

I haven't mentioned our old house in a while (out of sight, out of mind - I wish!). It is STILL for sale. Lots of people have brought their houses way below market which is not helping at all. We are already lower than we wanted to go but at this point, it just needs to go. It's hard to enjoy the new house for worry about the old one. And thinking of yard work for both has been a real treat too. I guess that's one good reason winter's coming.

Well, I'm off to go run some errands. With two squirmy little boys. Wish me luck!


loud storms
last night

a new pond
of leaves
encircle the tree
in the front yard

in the twilight
the yellow leaves
glisten with rain
but so does the road
and it is our own
yellow brick road

does it lead
to the land of sold houses?
or the land of good health?

maybe it is
all just a figment of
my imagination
because as the sun rises
the leaves fade
the road is gone
all that's left
are soggy, scattered
remnants of a once
vibrant tree

and the raking begins...

October 6, 2006

friday's feast #114 (#8)

Name a song you know by heart.
I know lots of them but for my husband I'll say "Baby Got Back".

What will you absolutely not do in front of another person?
I have no idea. Ever since I had kids, most everything is out there. The other stuff I don't do or discuss either so I'm moving on... :)

How often do you use mouthwash and what kind do you like?
I never use mouthwash. I hate everything about it - the flavor, the tingly feeling, the smell. My dad used to swish mouthwash forever. Thinking about mouthwash makes me think of him. Isn't that strange?

Main Course
Finish this sentence: I am embarrassed when...
I forget to do something I've said I'll do. Pay a bill, bring a snack to a kid function, show up late at work, that kind of stuff...

What was the last food you craved?
Pork Chops. And then we had them for dinner night before last. Now I'm craving this. Doesn't that sound delicious?!

To learn more about Friday's Feast, click here.
To get the questions and participate, click here.

October 2, 2006


watching the tree
outside my window
fiery red
starting at the top
touched by the sun
over the past few weeks
the fire spreads
down towards earth
the wind blows
and the red leaves
break free
released of their seasonal duty
and ride the wind
landing scattered

the limbs left bare
resonate deep in my soul
looking empty and alone
awaiting spring
the epitome of anticipation

a squirrel runs up
and along the newly bare limbs
for the long winter ahead

the squirrel gathers
and the tree lets go

the circle of life

October 1, 2006

bloggy tour of testimonies

There's a new "tour" going on in the blogging world called "Bloggy Tour of Testimonies". The link to the tour (other testimonies) is at the end of mine...

I grew up going to a United Church of Christ church. I was baptized as a small child and confirmed in fifth grade. Then we moved and started going to an American Baptist Church, where I was promptly baptized again (the full dunk this time). In the years following high school, I went to a non-denominational church. Then when I started dating my husband, I began attending his church which is a United Methodist Church. I just transferred my membership there by proving I'd been baptized (proof of only one baptism was needed, in case you were wondering...). So, according to church documentation, I am covered as far as being a Christian, right? Well, actually, I think the answer is no. Because regardless of all these things, this doesn't say a thing about the saving grace of Jesus Christ. And in my case, most of these decisions were made for me by other people.

I'm thankful that my youth group at the Baptist church went on a weekend retreat the year I was in eighth grade. If my memory serves me correctly (good luck!), it was scheduled to be an all day event and that's it. Enter the weather in the midwest during February. We were hit with a snow storm and spent the night in a church. And by church, I mean I slept on a pew in the sanctuary. But that night, the speaker gave a talk. He came flying down the center aisle of the church on a skateboard, which I could hardly believe. Most of my church experiences up to that point were very, very conservative. He was acting like he was a young, elementary aged kid and he began to tell about all the activities he was involved in. Playing outside with his friends and overall, just busy. Then the guy pretended to be in high school and he was busy hanging with girls and studying. Then he was in college and he was busy. And then married and busy. And then widowed and busy. And then as an old man, he was busy. At every stage, God called out to him. But he was too busy, always saying he would catch up with God later. He knew it was important to spend time with the Lord but he was always so preoccupied with his life. I can only say that God touched my heart that night, in the middle of the snow storm. I started crying because I was such a hyper kid. I was always, always, well, busy. When the man opened the altar to pray, I went forward. I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior that night, standing beside my youth group leader. After all the classes and rituals that I had been through, I finally got it.

I wish I could say that I let Jesus fill my heart that night and I've never looked back. Never been far away from Him again. Sadly, that isn't true. Life happens and you forget all the wonderful things that Jesus is doing in your life. You forget about the mercy He extends every day. You aren't thankful for the grace that makes everything okay. Don't get me wrong. I never again doubted that my Jesus was with me always. And I feel that He steered my inner compass along the way. But there were times when I blatantly didn't listen to Him, didn't obey.

I also struggled mightily with the idea of God's will. How can we know God's will for our lives? When your friends are telling you to do one thing, your mom and/or dad are telling you to do another thing, your heart is saying even another thing, it's really hard to know which way is the right way. I talked to my youth group leaders, I prayed, I studied my bible, and yet I heard nothing. After years of searching, I realize that I wasn't listening. You can't hear God if you are always making noise, always talking. More than that though, I finally had a revelation about God's will.

I took a crooked road to get to where I am now. I married my college boyfriend and had a little girl. She ended up being my ticket home. It was my responsibility to her that threw me into reality and made me realize what I wanted in life. And even if I made mistakes, it was her well-being that kept me striving to be a better person. I lost my dad and it really shook my soul. Other things happened and my college boyfriend and I ended up divorcing. Something I knew the Lord can't stand and it made me feel the farthest away from God ever.

Then out of the blue, an old friend from high school surfaces. Carefully, I tread through this time. I am excited but want to do what God wants. Again, I make mistakes but ultimately, I feel the peace of God's will. Coincidences spring up left and right. I know that God's hand was in all of it. So, my revelation is this: the will of God manifests itself in the peace you feel in your soul when you are on the path that God has planned for you. Feel the peace and know you are within His will.

It was at the time that I was farthest from God that He chose to reveal to me what I had been searching for all those years. Isn't that just like God? To deliver me in my greatest time of need? Oh and He did so much more than that. He brought people into my life that just loved me back into the fold of God's flock. How grateful I am for those people that used their love and their hugs to remind me that God always goes after that one lost sheep. It was a very overwhelming time in my life. But at the same time, it was such sweet healing.

It's been over five years now since that revelation. And some days I forget how far I've come. Some days I still don't do my part to further my relationship with God. I get too busy and forget. But I never put it off for long. I feel that pull of my heart and know that my Heavenly Father is calling me. He wants to remind me how much He loves me. And I always answer that call.

To read more testimonies, click here. Enjoy reading all the wondrous things God can do. Feel free to add your own story! :)

design by freebloggerdesigns.blogspot.com