(I have some pictures of everyone in the pool that I will have to post when Joey gets home with the zip drive.)
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
(I have some pictures of everyone in the pool that I will have to post when Joey gets home with the zip drive.)
Thursday, July 23, 2009
GRACE... Thursday was a some what yucky day. AS I was driving the kids to the beach, in all my wisdom I answered a phone call right as I was passing a cop. And yes, That nice police man pulled me right over. And come to find out, my driver's licence has been expired for a little over a year. He so gently told me that he would have to tow my car because without a current licence I am officially an unlicensed driver. But then he looked in the back and saw all three of my little treasures waiting so patiently for me to take them to the beach, and he gave me grace and let me keep my car, but still proceeded to hand me a big fat TICKET! For me, the worst part about the whole thing was having to call Joey and tell him what had happened.
I know that my job as wife and mother is of great importance and value but I must confess that sometimes I just wish that I had a job where I made a little bit of money. It was so humbling for me to accept the fact that I am in a position where I have to allow Joey to pay for my mistakes. I know that he didn't look at it that way. He always makes me feel like everything is "ours." But still.
Later that day I got my cell phone wet and now you can no longer see the screen. Bummer. I had to call Joey AGAIN and confess another mistake! By that time I was in tears. I was so worried about calling him and I thought for sure that he was going to be annoyed with me (which I'm not sure why I felt that way because I can count on one hand the number of times that he has been outwardly bothered at me throughout our last nine years of marriage.) But the best thing about Thusrday was the way that Joey respoonded to me when I called about the cell phone... He kinda chuckled a little bit and cracked a joke, "Wow Love, That cell phone sure did cost you a lot of money today. I guess you'll have to pay me back with a kiss when I get home." Can anybody say, GRACE! I was so grateful for his grace towards me. Just so, so grateful! Blessing upon Blessing, don't ya think? :)
A CONVERSATION... I was cleaning the bathroom the other day and all the kids (AJ included) were taking a nap. The night before I heard Reesie crying at 4:30am, when I went into their room I found Halee playing in the bathroom, hence the reason for Reesie screaming. I asked her what she was doing and she said, "just playing." She KNOWS not to get out of her bed!!!! She KNOWS with all her heart. And I KNOW with all my heart that she knows not to get out of her bed.
As I was cleaning I was having a conversation with the Lord,
Me... "Why Lord, do my children continue to do the very thing that they know very well that they are not supposed to do? When are they going to just get it? I am as consistant as I can humanly be. Where is the fruit Lord?
And as I was talking to the Lord about all this Tara came into my bathroom, half flustered, half laughing. It turned out that AJ had gotten out of bed a few times during naps and the consequences that he was recieving didn't seem to be phasing him. I wanted to be encouraging towards Tara but I think all I was able to come up with was something like, "welcome to my world. I totally understand the feeling." She was wondering what she had done wrong. I told her, "nothing, you are doing exactly what you are supposed to be doing." Which I believe with my whole heart is true.
When she left the bathroom I continued my conversation with the Lord. Except this time I just listened for awhile. And then I started thinking about the verse that talks about running the race. I am thinking that the Lord brought this verse to my mind. :)... "Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." ... and ..."I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." I know that these verses are not about parenting but in that moment they spoke to my heart... they encouraged me about my job as a mom to my MSC. I feel like I repeat myself all the time. I feel like I tell my wee lads the same instructions over and over and over again. Sometimes it feels as if the consequences are NOT working. But I know that the truth is that it IS working. It's like running the race... slow and steady... never giving up...
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
As I was checking them out in my rearview mirror, they were smiling, and swaying their bodies in unison to the sound of Deana Carter's, "We Danced Anyway..." (Which is a GREAT summer song by the way. It's actually a great anytime song.)
We were stopped at a stop light when Siah said, "Hey mom, check me out." Then he stuck out his tongue (cuz that what he does when every time that he shows me his dance moves) and then he just kept on swaying to song.
It was just sweet... Summer is simply sweet. The watermelon, the pool, the sunshine, the breeze that comes up from the ocean. The kids splashing and laughing in the yard.
The boys figured out how to jump off the slide into the other side of the kiddy pool this morning. AJ did some kind of awesome flip thing that looked scary at first but was quite impressive once we saw him come up out of the water with a proud smile on his face. :)
To tell you the truth, the girls aren't really into the water these days. By the time I get Hal's swimsuit on and every one sunscreen-ed up, Hal is "ALL DONE!" She is so into princess dresses these days. She has two pink dresses that her Grandma Judy got her for her birthday that she wears every chance she gets. And when those dresses are to dirty to wear she carries them with her around the house and she sleeps with them at night until I have a chance to wash them again.
See below? She wore her swimsuit for a whopping 15 minutes. Then back into the princess dress and princess shoes...
Siah has had some trouble keeping his shorts on this summer... Maybe he's gonna be a plumber when he grows up?
We ended up reading some books in the yard...
It was a sweet summer day...
Monday, July 13, 2009
A short preface for story #1... We have been talking with the kids about gun safety a lot the past few weeks...
At breakfast this morning I thought that I was having this awesome conversation with the kids about the Lord. At the very end of the conversation I brought what we had been talking about back around and asked them a question, "So how can we show others that we know and love God?"
In response to my question Hal informed me, "If a mean man comes into our house and tries to take our stuff... (pause)... we's gotta get our shotgun and scare him away."
Clearly she was not as in to the conversation about Jesus as I thought.
I took the kids to a little fruit stand this morning. Before we got out of the car I gave them my notorious reminder lecture that I give each time we are about to enter into a store... "Please do not touch the food. Stay by me. Keep your hands behind your back if you have to to keep yourself from touching the food.... Are we clear that we are NOT to touch the food?"
As I am checking out, I look over at Siah who has his hands behind his back (good), but his tongue is sticking out and he is LICKING, yes licking, piles of strawberries, and mumbling
"Mmmmm" quietly to himself between each lick.
"Siah! What are you doing????"
"What Mom? I didn't touch the food."
"No son, you sure didn't."
Needless to say... since the check out lady was watching the whole thing, I added the basket of strawberries to my purchase.
Story # 3
Ok, so I promise that when we left the house this morning Halee FOR SURE had underwear on. But as I was getting her out of the cart at Costco, (stop number three on our day of errands today), SHE HAD NO UNDERWEAR ON!
"Hal, where did your underwear go?"
She puts both her hands on her checks and shoots me a stunned look with her eyebrows and exclaims, "Oh my goodness Mama, they must have fallen off in the store!"
What??? How could I have missed her loosing her underwear in the store? There is always the possibility that she took them off before we left the house and I didn't catch it. Who knows?
But oh my goodness, what a silly day it has been. :)
Until next time...
Sunday, July 12, 2009
I love how God calls us to "work out our salvation." Knowing God and being the kind of son/daughter that he wants us to be is a process. On the day when Christ saved me from my sin, and humbled my heart enough to confess that sin to him, and strengthened me enough to accept his unreserved, and oh so tender forgiveness, that moment was only the beginning, not the end of my salvation. Back then, I knew very little about the Word. I hardly knew where to find the book of Genesis. I had no idea that the gospels so gloriously unfolded the divine details of the life of Christ. I knew nothing of Paul and the miracles that God did in and through his life and how his passion for his Savior enabled him to write so much of the new testament.
When I accepted Christ I never would have guessed that the majority of the most amazing Christ followers experienced the most atrocious trials. To be honest I thought that life was going to get easier and more comfortable once I accepted Christ. But by the looks of it, according to the Bible, most of us get the most refined by going through the fire before we can come out pure as gold. Prison, beatings, a whale, a lion's den, war, famine, death on a cross, loss of children, empty wombs, boils from head to toe... all clearly far from taking the easy road.
I am reading a book this summer with a few ladies from our church called, Disciplines of A Godly Woman. It's one of those books that you need to remind yourself that you really can't do a whole lot on your own, but you can do a whole heck of a lot with the Holy Spirit at work within your soul... that is, if you'll let him. :)
Any who... One of the 16 disciplines that the author discusses is the discipline of the Mind. And she puts out this verse in a challenge to really ponder and be mindful of the things that we put into our minds.
"I will ponder the way that is blameless. Oh, when will you come to me? I will walk with integrity of heart within my house; I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless. I hate the work of those that fall away. It shall not cling to me." Psalm 101:2-3
I have been pondering this verse in my heart all week long. I have read it repeatedly. I have thought mainly about the things that I watch. I've thought about how desensitized I am to the things that I allow my eyes to view. Often times it's nothing extreme. It's a crude joke, or a revealing love scene that doesn't necessarily present all the details but there is no denying that it puts impure images in my mind. "I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless..." Does it really matter if I fell asleep last night to Jennifer Lopez moving in with her boyfriend and reading taro (spelling?) cards with her guy friend who happens to prefer sleeping with men rather than women? Those things are all worthless, are they not?
Because this is my blog I feel free to be totally honest here... As of this moment I have absolutely no intentions to stop watching movies a few times a week with my Joey. But I also must confess that this week I have been asking myself, "Why not?" If in one moment of my day my soul is pleading with the Lord, "Lord, I do not want to set before my eyes things that are worthless," and the next moment my soul and my mind are consciously choosing to stare at that little black box with image after image of things that don't please God, how can I expect the Lord to answer me? If I watch things that are worthless then my mind will obviously have things in it that are worthless.
And the opposite will be true just the same. If I read the Bible and listen to wise men and women speak about the Bible, and read books that challenge me to think through godly principles, godly character, godly perspective then the likelihood of me becoming the kind of godly woman that I want to be is a lot more likely. I am starting to think that just asking God to help us be godly is only half of what he requires of us. I cannot be lukewarm... I cannot be the kind of godly women that I want to be and constantly be dipping my feet in the world.
Do I really want to "walk with integrity of heart within my house.. and not set before my eyes anything that is worthless?"
I really do. But in my heart I am pondering the change that will need to take place for me to do so.
What do you think? To extreme? Do you think God really cares what we watch... what we listen to... what we read... essentially what we put into our minds?
Just pondering... :)
PS... After posting tonight I read this quote...
"The Bible makes no room for the idea of the secular. In biblical worldview, there is only the sacred and the profane, and the profane is just the sacred abused, unkempt, trampled down, trivialized, turned inside out. It is just the holy treated in an unholy way.” ~Buchanan
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
My little Siah is, well, growing? Learning? Maturing or something? I'm not sure what word to use. He's been saying the sweetest things lately. Tonight before dinner, on his own initiative, he got Reesie's highchair and pushed it to the big table, then he came back to me and said, "Mama, is there anything else that I can do to help you?" And being the sap mom that I am, I got a little teary-eyed and told him, "No thank you love... but I really appreciate your thoughtfulness." Then he said, "Ok, then I'll go sit in my chair and wait patiently for me's dinner."
We've been talking about the word compassion this week. Sometimes the kids will accidently bonk each other or trip over each other, or step on my foot, or whatever, and then they just stand there at a loss of what to do. So I told them when those things happen they could say something like, "Oh my goodness, I'm so sorry. Are you ok?" And it's sinking in! Because today, Siah accidently stepped on Halee's hand and he stopped and proclaimed, "OH MY GOODNESS HAL! YOU'S OK?" Then he looked at me and said, "Mama, me's have some passion!" I am pretty sure he meant that he had compassion. :)
Siah and Hal have been struggling with sneakiness and lying lately. A few days ago I let them get down from the lunch table and look for Siah's cup that they said he had left in the garage. A few minutes later Joey (who had been working in the garage) brought the kids back in and had them confess to me that instead of looking for Siah's cup they were in the garage whispering to each other and sneaking handfuls of pretzels into their pockets that they had found in the bottom of our stroller. They didn't know that their Papa was right there watching the whole thing.
Their Papa went back out to the garage and left our guilty children with me to be disciplined. This lying and sneakiness has been happening somewhat often so I was feeling frustrated and at a loss of what to say. So I made them sit at the table in silence for a good twenty minutes while I tried to figure out what on earth I was going to do about this problem. Finally an idea came to me.
I got a piece of paper and and drew a circle on it. I told them that the circle was a "circle of trust." When they are sneaky and when they choose not to speak the truth, It puts them outside the circle. But when they choose to tell Mama the truth and simply be open and honest about what they are wanting then they get to experience the safety of being inside the circle. I know they are young and I wasn't really sure if they understood what I was trying to tell them.
But the next morning Hal saw the paper with the picture of the circle on the table. She picked it up and brought it to me and said, "Mama, today I want to be inside the circle. I no sneak the pretzels today. Me's tell the truth."
It blessed my socks off to hear her say that. It's only been a few days, but neither of them have lied or been sneaky about anything since our conversation about the circle of trust. I feel so proud of them and so thankful that the Holy Spirit seems to be at work in their little hearts!
And Reesie, well this morning... are you ready for this....
She stood up in the middle of the living room all about herself, and then took her first THREE STEPS!!!! It was sooooo cool! Then at Bible study this morning, she took like twenty steps down the hall!! It was awesome!
But the funny thing is that she only wants to walk on her own time. She walked so much at Bible study, then when I tried to have her show her Papa this afternoon, she wouldn't even stand up. Another strong willed, independent little girl! What great qualities to have! I can't wait to see her use those qualities to the glory of God!
So that's the latest! Blessing upon blessing! I'm loving these treasures!
Saturday, July 4, 2009
Friday, July 3, 2009
The advice was this...
"One of the best gifts you can give your children is to outwardly, genuinely, intentionally, and passionately love their Papa."
It sounds simple enough but I will be the first to admit that when kids came into the mix the temptation to put my kiddos first has crept in. It's not that I don't love loving on Joey, but the practicality of the day to day tasks that my kids require of me sometimes consume me. (You know, they need to be fed and then cleaned up after, fights need to be broken up, conversations need to be had; teaching, rebuking, instructing are constant. By the end of the day I am tired!) And if I am not mindful or intentional about doing special things for Joey then he, unfortunately, gets put on the back burner. I am so grateful that that little piece of advice is stuck somewhere in the back of my head...
I try to think of little things here and there but it's not always an easy task with three small children. But I am determined to put forth the effort as often as my mom brain and body will allow me to do so.
Our roommates are out of town this week, so on Monday while I was grocery shopping I decided that I was going to rearrange the normal things we buy and pick out something extra special to make for my Joey, but still stay within our budget. I found some tri tip on sale at Trader Joes and picked up some asparagas and spinach salad on sale at sprouts.
I don't have much time to cook extravagant meals with our MSC around so I woke up early on Wednesday and put the tri tip in a slow cooker on low and let it cook all day. That evening I fed the kids PB and J before Joey got home. I cleaned up after them and got them settled into movie. Then I sauteed the asparags in some olive oil, black pepper and garlic for a few minutes. I tossed together some gorgonzolla, dried cranberries and candied pecans with the fresh spinach that I had bought with this fabulous raspberry vinergarette that trader Joes sells.
I put two plates together and set them on the table. I put a glade candle in the middle (for ambiance of course. ) And then I poured a beer in a wine glass for Joey and some sparkling apple cider in a wine glass for me (just to spice things up a little. :)
When Joey walked in the door, he was super stoked. The meat was absolutely fabulous, it melted in our mouths.
After about three minutes of adult conversation, the kids came waltzing in and wanted to sit with us. So we pulled them up into our laps and the whole thing turned into a family affair. We might not be able to have quiet romantic dinners around here but we can at least pretend every once in awhile.
I really do love you babe and I hope that more and more the Lord will give me ideas and ways to show you that I really do love that you are my husband! :)
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
You literally light up my life!!!
You are still so tiny but overflowing with personality...
You say so much with your eye brows... You shoot me these looks that I can hardly believe are coming from your one year old face...
You are fiercely independent but still my most affectionate child by far...
I love the way that you melt in my arms when you are in need of some reassurance...
I love your confidence... You're not afraid to explore anything on your own.
I love how much you love Siah and how you crawl around the house repeating his name over and over again until you find him.
I absolutely love your smile and I love to hear you laugh over and over again. It's one of my favorite sounds in the whole wide world!
I want you to know that you are an answer to your Papa and my prayers! We truly TREASURE the gift that God has given us in you.
We love you sweet girl!
A MOST HAPPY first BIRTHDAY TO YOU!!
Anyways, we had a $20 budget for the day...so I packed lunches for all of us... we got $10 worth of tickets which allowed Siah to ride five rides... I let Hal play a game where she was guaranteed a prize for $2, and she was on a high for the rest of the time carrying around her new blue dog-thing (I'm not sure if it's a dog or some other kind of animal)...
There was a game where the kids could win a real fish and it only cost 50cents. We each got one ball to try and throw into this tiny jar. Siah went first and TOTALLY MADE IT!!!! I was so excited, I was cheering and clapping so loud! I hope that I didn't embarrass Siah, but I was so over the top excited that I wouldn't be surprised if he needs some therapy over the whole thing twenty years from now. Clearly, I was most definitely WAY more excited than Siah was about that fish! :)
Anyways, we ended our day sharing a giant ice cream treat for $5.50... One bite for Siah, one for Hal, a giant bite for me, and a mini bite for Reesie... YUMMY!
I was so stoked to walk away from a full day at the fair for only $18! And my budget man (Joey) was too! :)
Below are some pictures of our day...
I decided to dress them all in bright colors so that I could find them easily if they wanted to get out of the stroller and walk around...
Checking out those cows...
When we took Josiah two years ago to the fair, he could fit his whole body inside the rim of that tire... not anymore...
The boys waiting in line for a ride...
They were so stoked about the rides...
Hal winning her "dog thing"...
Mama, Anna, Reesie & Laney...
This picture cracks me up... I wonder what Josiah is thinking?
I love Siah & Hal's "picture smile"...
It was so stinkin fun!!!
Blessing Upon Blessing!!!