Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Word Filled Wednesday 1 Peter 1:7

The purpose of Word Filled Wednesday is to share the WORD through a photo and verse.



1 Peter 1:6-9 In Context:

6In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

In my life lately, it seems like it's been one thing after another. One hurt feeling, one grief stricken moment, one sickness, one wounded heart, then... rinse and repeat. Forgiveness comes easy for me, it is purely a gift that I have been given. I am SO grateful for that. However, it doesn't lessen the pain of what life throws at me. It stings. But knowing that through these trials I am being REFINED BY FIRE, I have a wonderful feeling of hope and expectation. Wondering what God will bring me next, what will I find on my plate tomorrow? Will it be more than I've ever expected? You BET it will be. In that, I continue to praise, honor and glorify HIM who brings inexpressable and glorious joy to my soul.

Thanks for joining me... for more inspiring posts, please visit:

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

News from the Back Acher

It's Tuesday. Another pouring down, rainy day over here in the beautiful Willamette Valley. You people think it rains all the time here in Oregon do ya? Well duh, how do you think the valley gets beautiful? RAIN! And lots of it. Similar to a rain forest. Only not as many poisonous frogs.

Since it's Tuesday, it also means that I obviously missed my Not Me! Monday post yesterday. I tried, but I couldn't think of anything I did wrong. I'm that good. (NOT!)

Maybe next week I'll remember to tell you about wearing an apron at dinner and thinking I'd save my outfit from the inevitable Drop and Plop of whatever food I was trying to wrangle into my mouth, but instead somehow, it managed to drop in just BEHIND my apron but right on the front of my brand new clothes. What do I need? A rain poncho just to dine in?
Pathetic, I tell ya.
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In other news, the smallest child in the household gave me his RULES of being SIX years old today. They go just like this:

No Ticklin'
No Huggin'
No Kissin'

JUST SNUGGLIN' and NUFFIN ELSE!
Well then, I guess that about spells it out for me. He's only been six for a month and already he's changing the well-established rule of my house which is: "Momma can kiss and hug you with no notice whatsoever, and if she feels like tickling you, then just pretend to like it." Oh, and... "No screaming." Hmph!!
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I put up six roosters on Craigslist late last night. Four families claimed them by noon today. I told people to just not tell me what their purposes were for the roosters. I don't wanna know, and neither do my kids. Just get them out of here. My hens are mad at me because there are too many boys running around with nonsense on their minds, and if I don't make the girls happy they won't give me eggs. If I don't get eggs, then my husband sees no purpose for my "hobby" because I sell eggs to buy feed (or I am supposed to be). And if I have no purpose, then that means he won't let me have chickies again, which is really all there is to life.



Anyway... what it all boils down to (pun intended of course):
If momma ain't happy ain't nobody happy.

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Speaking of kids, my son's teacher called me late in the evening last night to tell me something like this: So - your son says if he could pick any pet out of an entire pet store, he'd pick a dog. Why? Because his daddy shot his dog and he witnessed the whole thing and he told the class about it.

Eh?? HE DID NOT!! He knows that the dog died... but for crying out loud what kinda parents do you think we are? "Here son, stand here and hold this shovel while I murdalize your sweet little puppy, who is completely innocent and take notes for a report next week in kindergarten, mmmkay?"

It wasn't like that ma'am. Please don't report us.

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And lastly, I'm NOT SICK ANYMORE! I'm still draggin' around the after effects of a cold and 2 months of muscle loss, but I actually cleaned my kitchen yesterday. Yeah, you heard me right, I'm sporting one brilliant room of happiness. Now only 9 more to go! Woot woot!
Gee... I'm not feeling so good all of the sudden.
How about you? What have you been up to lately?

Friday, February 20, 2009

Just Because

I posting just because.

Because I have nothing better to do than this right now. I want to share a teeny secret with you. I don't want anyone going and telling Mr Nice Guy what I'm up to, but he does have a smidge of a clue. Because I told him a little, but I don't know if he was paying attention. Keeping the suspense, that's what I call it.

JUST BECAUSE - I purchased the book The Love Dare. Now if you haven't seen the movie "Fireproof", then stop what you're doing right this minute, and go see it. Rent it, buy it, find it in a theater or something, just do it. It's my mission to make sure every married couple sees this movie.

Go Now!

Ok, since I know that you have now gone and seen the movie, simply because I suggested it, this will make more sense to you. (If you STILL haven't done this, then put it on your list of things to do. You won't regret it, I promise).

The Love Dare wasn't purchased on a whim. I have been planning this for weeks, just waiting to work up the nerve to do it. I have faith in my marriage, but I'll be darned if I have faith in MYSELF to pull this thing off. Finally after much prayer and equal amounts of "listening" I opted to buy the book. I decided the month of February would be a great month to put the words of the book into practice. After all, it's the month of loooove, and I'd even have Hallmark pulling for me.

Now comes the part where I confess, before God and all blogdom, that this book is kicking my behind! I decided I wanted to take the slow approach, kind of like "adjusting your lifestyle", or "changing your eating habits". I didn't want to rush through it in the suggested forty days, I wanted to take one day, really nail the idea behind the chapter, and then once I did it RIGHT and CORRECTLY then I would move on.

Unfortunately, I appear unable to do anything correctly the first time. Or the first day. Or the first week. The first dare written at the end of chapter one was simply this:


The first part of this dare is fairly simple. Although love is communicated in a number of ways, our words often reflect the condition of our heart. For the next day, resolve to demonstrate patience and to say nothing negative to your spouse at all. If the temptation arises, choose not to say anything. It's better to hold your tongue than to say something you'll regret.

Ugh! Now WHY would they put the HARDEST dare FIRST?? It's because I'm destined to fail, that's why. Well, I knew I didn't have this book in my hands for nothing, so I vowed to stick it out, at least until I could go a solid day without saying anything negative.

Well... now I'm convinced that I'm not destined to fail, I merely set myself up to fail! Speaking negatively has apparently become a finely honed skill. I've had years of practice, and some great coaches. I didn't realize it until I listened to my words for an entire day. How embarassing! On day two I figured I'd give it a better try. Dang, there is NO WAY I was going to get it perfectly right. I would just be happy with giving it my best shot, and then try to do it again the next day.

I glared at the book.

On day three and four, I was struggling so hard that I almost threw the book out the window.

By day five, I decided to chalk up day one (and 2, 3 & 4) as a complete loss, and just move along. Maybe I could come back and work on that one. I finally picked up the book again.

What a coincidence! Dare #2:


In addition to saying nothing negative to your spouse again today, do at least one unexpected gesture as an act of kindness.

WELL HELLO! Someone KNEW I wouldn't get it right the first time, but darnit, now I have to try for yet another day. At least I'd had several other days to warm up. Now I realized that I needed to keep on going, do my best, and not look for perfection. Perfection is a set up for absolute failure. Only one person to ever walk the earth was perfect, and it certainly wasn't me.

I am not planning on posting every single dare here, but I do encourage you to buy the book and do it yourself. You don't have to tell your spouse what you are doing. But please be prepared to feel extra sensitive because you are trying SO hard and your efforts may go completely unnoticed, as they did in my case. Nobody notices when you don't say negative things, at least not at first. But they'll sure notice after about 40 days of it (or in my case, 50 or so. haha!)

For me, I felt it was unfair to go about some of these things without letting Mr Nice Guy know what was going on. In a way, I needed his support and understanding, because I'm sure I'll get fed up from time to time and want to burn some pages. I told him on Valentine's Day that my gift to him, was that I would be reading through this book and being an active participant because I cared about our marriage, and I loved him enough to make it a priority. Not sure if he really got what I was saying, or the full depth of my sincerity but I sure pray that this makes our relationship even stronger in the coming months.

If you've read this book, or even if you haven't, please tell me what things keep you from speaking negatively without chewing your own tongue off in the meanwhile?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Word Filled Wednesday Proverbs 10:12

The purpose of Word Filled Wednesday is to share the WORD through a photo and a verse.



In the spirit of St. Valentine's day - forgive me, I was out of town that day! - I want to talk about Loooooove. I just gotta say how HAPPY I am to know that no matter what crappy, cruddy, downright naughty things I've done (and I'm NOT mentioning any - I save that post for Mondays) I am ALWAYS loved. It's like a huge blanket of fog - like in the photo I took this past weekend - covering everything I've ever done wrong, or any toxic words I've ever spoken. It makes everything all nice, and warm and fluffy! Ok, skip the "fluffy" image, but it sure makes things clean again. Thank you God for loving us through our faults, and through the problems we cause. Thank you family, for doing the same thing... and by the way, Happy Birthday to my 9 year old Pirate Boy today!

Thanks for joining me... for more inspiring posts, please visit:

Monday, February 16, 2009

Evidence of a good time


You know some days I just wonder how on earth I got to be SO blessed to witness some of God's greatest masterpieces. Then, I look in my own home, and see several more!

Sometimes they act like they like each other, or that they aren't grossing out their Mom by pushing loose teeth forward during a photo... but for the most part they are good kids. Usually.
Got to visit the COOLEST hat store while we were in Seaside. All kinds of hats, for all kinds of occasions. The hot dog hat, the pizza hat, the pirate hat, the hippie hat. There were hats for kids, hats for grownups, hats for practical purposes, hats for just being goofy, and even hats for dogs! It was fun. Lots of fun.



Our kids each picked out a hat, of course. They haven't taken them off yet either.
Yes, we are missing one kid. She was at Winter Camp with a bunch of other youth for the long weekend. Family dynamics sure change when you're short one kid (meaning: things are usually quieter and CHEAPER! haha)

The Carousel Mall also had... a Carousel! It's hard taking action shots on my lazy ol' camera.

This balloon appeared to have an unreasonable amount of attraction towards my husband.
Weird.
Overall, we had a really good time - and, I got some cool photos out of it. Bet you'll see them on my Word Filled Wednesday posts coming to a blog near you!

Third time isn't always a charm

Remember this??

1. Take a vacation
2. Get sick

Yeah-huh! That's right. I did. So there, who cares? Who's COUNTING anyway?

I took another vacation (well, we CALL it a vacation, but it was just a pre-registered weekend at the coast for my son's ninth birthday. It was his present... along with all the junk we bought for him while we were there because he's so dang cute and I can't tell him no. You see what I mean? I'm helpless, absolutely helpless.

If you look REAL close, you can see me wrapped around his little finger.

Ok, stop looking, there's really nothing there except maybe leftover caramel corn or something else sticky.

But it's ok that I'm sick again. At least it's not that virus crud, or that bronchitis... this time it's either a plain ol' knock-you-between-the-eyes cold or some killer allergies. You shoulda seen me scream at my son (yes, the cute one pictured above) to GET THE HECK OUTTA THE WAY, MOMMA NEEDS THE BATHROOM as I was frantically waving my arms about and sneezing violently between howls because I HAD TO PEE! Yeah, get moving kid, take your business to the OTHER bathroom please, because I'm about to have an accident. Did I mention that I'm so happy I don't have that virus crud anymore? *ahem* Yeah, now THAT woulda been fun to have along with all this sneezing. *snicker*

Anyway where was I? Oh yes, third trip away from home (in as many months) wasn't a charm for my health, but...

My third BORN child is DEFINITELY a charm. He's the apple of my eye, the anti-depressant to my blues and HE STILL SNUGGLES!! Yep, I love him. Love him to pieces. He's my favorite... just like the others. Happy birthday in two days my little man! I wonder Dad's gonna let me do for your ACTUAL birthday!!??

Tomorrow... more pictures from the beach because I just can't post pics of only one kid... they are kinda like potato chips.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Another day in paradise

I learned something recently. Life goes on!

Yeah... it's pretty much trotting right along as I sit here slumped in my super-oversized recliner trying and trying to feel better. That dratted virus is taking quite a while to rid itself of my body. One of the benefits of Mr Nice Guy having shoulder surgery was that we had to go shopping for a big ol' chair that he could LIVE in for about four weeks. And he did. He must have spent enough time in it, because now I always get to use it and he's stuck on the uncomfortable couch with the kids *wicked laughter*. I can sit in it sideways, and blog till the cows come home. Which, quite obviously I haven't been doing any of recently. Sorry 'bout all that.

Let's see, news updates? They aren't all that exciting really. We did lose a turkey, apparently from natural causes. If being a thirty pound turkey is natural, anyway. I learned that my daughter can play her brother's recorder pretty well. I even recognized the tune. I just didn't know she had so much talent - from her NOSE. Yeah. Sick. Who's kid would play the recorder with her NOSE?

Not mine. I'm just glad she didn't pick up the trombone.

This sort of sounds like a Not Me! Monday post... guess I missed doing one this week. I didn't, however, miss the one where my friend Beth, from Outnumbered, Three to One, writes all about her pizza leftovers "NOT" getting stored in her bra... and then the subsequent follow-up blog by her sweet, loving son (my new favorite read) on Outsmarted: By One Woman, where he calls everything she says a big lie and mocks her publicly. We know she's telling the truth though. None of us has EVER dropped pizza toppings into our undergarments... or talked on the phone in the bathroom either, for that matter. Right? If you have nothing better to do, and you know you don't, you gotta check out those two blogs. Caution: Funny stuff.

I am beginning to wonder if all this rambling is going anywhere. Since it isn't, and we both know it already, I want to throw another one at you, courtesy of my kids. This is an actual text message I got from my 10 yr old girl reporting on her conversation with my 8 yr old boy while I was away from home one day.

"Mom, I called B a molecule, he called me a particle, I called him an atom, he called me an eve."
HUH?
For the record: I want to clarify that I do NOT condone name-calling in my home. Unless it's downright hysterical or scientific in nature.


Ahh... life goes on. One of these days, I'm gonna catch up with it! In the meanwhile, keep yer bellies laughing. Between that and some good old fashioned prayer, it makes every day worth waking up!
"Atom and Eve"

Saturday, February 7, 2009

If Life Was Fair

If life was fair, we wouldn't have heaven.

I don't know if someone else ever said that, it just came to me. But since I'm on that topic, let me tell you why I think that.


I'm starting to think that there is a direct correlation between these two things:

1. Take a vacation
2. Get sick

and then a month later:

1. Take a vacation
2. Get sick

Is it just me, or is there a pattern forming here? If so, I don't like it!

Things could be much worse. For instance, I could just get sick. You know, plain ol' sick, without the benefit of rest and relaxation right beforehand. See, I'm all about looking on the bright side of things.

This last time, all four kids went off to the Grandparents house for the weekend, while their Mommy and Daddy took a few days at the coast and all was well. Until kid after kid reported in that they were sicker than a dog. Then Grandpa and Grandma weren't feeling so hot either. By hot, I mean they felt miserable.

The kids came home on Sunday. Nobody went to school on Monday, still too sick or weak or whatever. Tuesday, two of the kids were able to go back. Wednesday, THEY ALL WENT BACK, and life appeared to be getting normal. Until that night. Ohhh... the miserable night of doom. For once, in all my years of pain-induced misery, I decided to take someone's advice and pop a couple Tylenol PM. It grabbed my insomnia, and slapped it down like nobody's business which was great, but then all of the sudden when Mr Nice Guy decided to get sick, I was completely worthless. Completely.

It was probably for the best (at least I keep telling myself that.) He was sick and in pain all of the next day, needing backrubs like a woman in full on back labor (for which I truly sympathized, having been there, done that!) and then it was time for bed again. Just an hour after tucking in the little man, and watching a movie with Mr Nice Guy (because he could kinda start sitting up by then) I heard a ruckus from the boys room. You know that feeling of walking into a room and getting slammed in the face by an offensive odor? Well yeah, I didn't even have to turn the lights on to know what happened.

An hour later, after cleaning up carpet, rugs, toys, laundry, bedding, mattress, KID... I flopped into bed and exclaimed that I wasn't feeling so hot. (Understatement of the century)

I don't even know how many times I was up that night, but I probably could have switched laundry over every time and gotten it all done in one night. I really had no concept of time all the next day, I just hoped my husband was well enough to throw crackers out to the children so they wouldn't be malnourished. The poor guy, he never really got a chance to milk this Norovirus gunk for all it was worth. (Think: Cruise ship full of lots and lots of sick people, yeah, it was like that) Thankfully I'm now able to sit upright for about 10 minutes at a time, but I do apologize to whoever out there is waiting on me to do something for them. I'll get to it, I promise!

Speaking of my poor guy, the dog went missing again last night -
To make a really terrible, horrible story really short... we found the dog. In the neighbors chicken house. The end. Literally.

To Mr Nice Guy and the kids:
I'm sorry it's been SUCH a cruddy week. I'm sorry you were all so sick, I'm sorry I was sick when you needed me to make your dinner. I'm really sorry about having to bury the dog in the middle of the night. Maybe we should take another vacation? You know, just get out of town and relax a bit? How about next weekend? Deal.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Word Filled Wednesday Psalm 18:46

The purpose of Word Filled Wednesday is to share the WORD through a photo and a verse.


Psalm 18:46 The Lord lives! Praise be to my rock! Exalted be God my Savior!
I told ya'll last week that the focus of my photos and verses for a month would be on Worship. Well I wanted to share this little picture I took while I was wandering down the sandy shoreline. The day after last week's post, we took off for the coast to spend 3 nights just relaxing, talking (a LOT) and doing some listening too. That and a little goofing off... but what else is new?

I mentioned that worship isn't something we just do on Sundays, when the guy with the slicked back hair gets up front and tells us what to do... it's a way of life. I don't know how ANYONE could look out over the breathtaking expanse of the ocean, feel the pounding waves against the rocks and hear the musical sounds of the sea birds without KNOWING that God exists. The response I have towards a scene like this? It's worship. Pure and simple.

Thanks for joining me today... for more inspiring posts, please visit:


Monday, February 2, 2009

Not Me! Monday - Please pass the bucket

It's Monday again! That means it's time to deny, refuse to admit, and otherwise NEGLECT RESPONSIBILITY for all those things that I didn't do anyway. My list is short. I only did nice things this week. You can trust me on that. Also...


It was NOT ME that snuck onto my dear friend's blog to surprise her with a shiny new header, only to forget to log out until AFTER I left a comment on someone else's blog. Boy I could get myself into trouble with that! I'm so glad there is no evidence that I did it!


I did NOT just spend four days of heaven at the beach with my husband and some best friends. If I had a gloriously wonderful time, then it means that I was not devoting all of my maternal energies into worrying about my four kids who, one right after another, came down with a bad case of gastrointestinal distress (aka NOROVIRUS) while they were in the care of my parents, who now ALSO are sharing in the family love (and vomit, and laundry, and misery). Sorry again, Mom and Dad.

Speaking of vomit, it was NOT ME that completely flipped a lid when her son tossed his cookies into a laundry basket this morning. It wasn't so much the fact that he hit the laundry basket, because it was (surprisingly) empty and I was proud of him for aiming at something waterproof instead of the carpet. It was the fact that the OTHER son, who fiddles constantly, flipped the basket upside down and onto the carpet and HIMSELF while I was attending to the one who had just gotten sick and hadn't yet cleaned out the laundry basket. I would not flip my lid over flung vomit... not at all!

I don't know about you, but that's about all I can stomach for today... *snicker*

For more public humiliation therapy, head on over to MckMama's place. If you can handle the lies truth!