Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Gimmies

There I go again! I have made the same mistake! A status on Facebook or a conversation about shopping gets me almost every time! Why is that? As Mama Bear Berenstain of the children's books would say, I get the "gimmies!" When I get "a bad case of the gimmies," I have to remind myself of these things:

1. Debt is bad, get rid of it.
2. Orphans in Vietnam
3. Women who chose life for their babies.
4. Hans Peter has a full belly in Haiti tonight.
5. Homeschooling my children.
6. Growing students to a relationship with Christ.
7. Supporting our missionaries
8. The more I have, the more I have to take care of.
9. If it is not broke, why replace it and if it is broke, why replace it? (no, that is not a typo.)

My frugal friend, Shannon's oven broke. She has searched for a used one with no leads. She remembered an old toaster oven her mother-in-law had given her in their camper. She has been cooking for her family for probably a month in a toaster oven! She made pecan pies in her toaster oven! This girl has some of the same points on her list as I do. Her dad called her one day to see if she still needed a stove. She got one, a green one. It is ugly, but it works and it was absolutely free.

I am called to be a steward of my finances just like Shannon. Do I have what I need? YES! Does that mean that I may have less then top of the line, like Shannon's green stove? Yeah, it does.

I am reminded of Luke 16:10-11 where Jesus said, "Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?"

Do I want a new wardrobe, printer, remodeled kitchen, or a new vehicle? That would be nice! Would I rather be trusted with true riches? You better believe it!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

A fond Farewell

Ole' Faithful,

You have been in my life for 13 plus years, from the moment I said, "I DO." We have traveled together through 5 cities and 2 states building a home. You have always been there for me. You provided the oxygen I needed to go on when times were hard.

When we lived in the "mountains" you provided an escape from my lonely reality.

We have been together in times of great light and times of darkness, but you hung in there. It obviously wore on you, but you stood proudly with what you had when others fell.

Your presence in my life has made it more beautiful. Thank you.

A baby was born, then another, and another. More times then not, you were neglected-shaded and deprived of the nourishment you needed from me.

You continued your stuggle to stay strong. A piece of you died with each poor decision I made on your behalf.

The children have loved you so. Infact, you have given yourself for them. For that, I thank you. Thank you for offering all of yourself to us.

But at this time, I say good-bye. Thank you for standing by me for 13 years.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Linny at has Memory Box Mondays with a tangible object in their home to remind them of what God has done. Check out her blog to learn more about it and the scripture reference. I am aware of blessings that God gives me but I have not kept good records to share with my children or grandchildren. I am considering keeping record in photos. When God things happen such as these, I am reminded of Psalm 37:4, Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. Here are our recent DESIRES turn DELIGHTS!

I was gifted this really cool wall decoration made by Uppercase Living but our room arrangements were still in limbo due to baby Blake. With Clay having his own room, we were now able to hang this. Weeks went by and I was still insecure about hanging it but so badly wanted to. You see, I can't cut a straight line! Well Nana T came to see us and she took care of that! Nana also looked it up to learn that there had been a mistake and it was vs 6 not 16(after this picture was taken.) She peeled the extra number right off.

Since Baby Blake was born, we knew we would need a carseat when she grew out of the infant carrier. The other two children did the old one in! I had looked at them before she was even born. When Blake's growth progressed slowly, we were able to put it off. At 2 years old, she had finally reached 21 lbs and it was time. It somehow came up in conversation with a friend. She told me she had 2 new carseats that a parent at her daycare had given her. One looked as if it had never been used. When the seat was brought to me, it still smelled new and My Dear and I were thrilled. Check out our big girl! She can even sleep in it-that is a blessing all in itself!

While visiting with family in NC, I learned about this author. I knew I should know his name but I did not. I wanted to read his work. At home, the new children's librarian assisted me in finding a book and pulled this one off the shelf. She commented on how old it was. I wanted to read it because it was the NC author and because Abe Lincoln is Clay's new hero. I checked it out, never read it but knew it was a classic that we could all benefit from. To avoid overdue fees, I returned it. I decided to stick a post it note on it for the librarian telling her if she pulls it, I want to buy it? It was worth the chance. I was awaken by the phone the next day to learn that I could have the book and it would cost a whopping 50 cents! It was not a matter of survival, just a desire of my heart.

I wanted to hang the scripture and to own the book. I did not need them! They were a desire I had. I needed a carseat but I did not need a free one. God wants to be in all the details of my life, He is a God of details! Delights happen all around us. So tell me, what is it that God has DELIGHTED you with recently?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Cheerio Toes

No matter how tough the day has been, there are so many stages in my life that I want to savor and not forget. I am constantly reminded how quick 18 years can pass and each step of the way, our children will need us less and less.

This morning, I walked around my nicely swept kitchen and rounded the bar to where our son had prepared a bowl of Cheerios. When I sat down, my socks had Cheerios clinging to them. Usually, it is my midsection food hangs on to but now it is my socks. One day my house will be tidy and Cheerio free.

I took the above picture this summer when the neighborhood boys came inside to play. I don't want to forget the young feet that have felt welcomed and safe in our home. Nor do I want to forget how Lydia's pink shoes fit into the pile.

I don't want to forget the piles of bibs that come out of a load of Miss Blake's laundry. I usually have to wash just to keep her in bibs.

I treasure the memory of crawling into bed one night and My Dear's feet being greeted by Matchbox cars in the sheets.

I don't want to forget that Lydia asked me to gain weight so I could be on the Biggest Loser or that she told me this week that she had swallowed a large piece of fruit and it hurt her "utensils." (a.k.a tonsils)

Tonight, Miss Blake pointed to Big Sister Lydia's bed and chattered. I confirmed that it was Lydia's bed, where she sleeps. B. then said, "like this," and tilted her head to the side and made a snoring noise. I so don't want to forget that!

I don't want to forget how Lydia used to make hugs in her belly and sometimes she ran out but if you wait, she could make some more.

I will always treasure how Clay set up his $5 Good-Will bicycle at the end of the driveway and made a sign that said, "How Bikes Work." How he waited for people to drive by and stop to hear what he had to say. His response when I asked him how old he was(4) then when I asked him how long he had been riding bikes (13 years.)

How just today, when I called the children to come and Clay was distracted with what he was doing but urged his sister to go to avoid getting into trouble. I don't want to forget it!

Oh, and the colors in Blake's hair when the sun hits it-I hold tight!

I am reminded of Mary at the birth of Christ. Luke 2:19 says, But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." Then again in verse 51 when they lost Him at the temple, Mary treasured these things in her heart too.

There are so many things that happen that I know I will forget, I won't write them down or I won't have my camera. But I treasure them in my heart and thank God for those sprinkles of blessings for this brief time. But for now, I will enjoy the slobbery kisses, runny noses, and Cheerios in my toes and stock pile them in my heart.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Never B. 1 Again

Miss Blake turned 2 last week! At 2, our darlings amaze us with what they say and the connections they make. The kids bought B. a few gifts. We have a tradition of taking the children's last picture at one age and first picture of the new age. I love sleepy smiles and Daddy bought a box of muffins for a special treat. Just the quick food we needed for a Sunday morning.

Blake opened hair bows first and wanted them all in her hair. She LOVED the book Lydia got her. She and Lydia both checked it out again and again at the library. I found a copy for $5 with shipping on ebay. YEAH!

The electric toothbrush is to help with her oral motor issues. In other words, I am over the bibs but B. is not liking that toothbrush. For now, we will use our cheap toothbrush-without the therapeutic effect.

Clay bought her a toy cellphone. She talked to daddy for awhile and then started telling everyone "cheese" as she took their pictures.

I could not shake that old song by Alabama called, "Never Be One Again." I found it on youtube with someone else's video if you want to check it out. I listened to it again and again after putting her to bed for the last time as a one-year-old. Nothing like torturing yourself, huh.

Do you know children do not develop knee caps until they are 2? With that being said, Congratulations on the knee caps Miss Blake and thanks for being such a significant part of our world. You are 2-rrific!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Wilma's Wacky Wednesday!

We have pet names for our children, not anything we planned it just happened. Lydia is Wilma, I think she got it because it goes with wild! Wednesday night was Wacky AWANA where the kids were encouraged to dress WACKY! Lydia began planning immediately. Clay was uninterested in participating but had plenty of good ideas for Wilma and she of course went for it- All or Nothing!

The soccer socks are 2 different colors, she has capris on under nightgown, 2 different shoes, a bib, an apron on her back and to top it off, a swim diaper on her head! She put her uniform vest on backwards under her bib. Blake was not happy about Wilma taking her new bibs out of the drawer so we asked permission for the Turkey bib. Even B thought it was pretty funny.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wedding Wonders

On the way to my brother's wedding, Lydia asked why it took so long for John and Katie to get married. I was not sure what was going on in her little head but she answered it herself and said, "It must be the dress. It takes a long time to get the dress." I think Lydia approved of the dress as much as she does the Aunt.
We take our kids to weddings and funerals and just about anywhere we are going. My Dear conducted this ceremony so all I had to do was take care of our youngins'. The wedding was entertainment enough for the big kids but here is the secret weapon for the toddler. She picked them out at the store the night before. We do not usually buy them making them even more special. It was a HOME RUN! I even saw big brother Clay grab a couple.
The outdoor wedding was wet and beautiful. The rain let up just enough to allow the bride to walk in. She is pretty anyway but she was RADIANT! The groom thought so too! There was a lot to do after the ceremony and the bride and groom hung out to help against everyone's wishes. I teased my new sister-in-law about the t-shirt she chose to wear. Snapped this picture while she grabbed a kiss. Is this a honeymoon tshirt or what?

As all princesses love a love story, our little darlin' snagged her own bouquet upon leaving the wedding late that evening. What a big day for her! (Look at the mud on those socks and shoes.)

And our little prince was equally precious. What a wonderful celebration with family and friends.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Hug from Vietnam

My Teddy Bear of a little brother got married this weekend!!! So that meant my parents headed North! My mom is diabetic so proper foot care is important. I wanted to take her out for a pedicure with J's wedding as an excuse. J is not his name but that is what I call him. Why complicate things with 3 more letters?

Miss Lydia and I took Nana to a nail salon. We enjoyed talking with the lady who was taking such good care of mom. I know she was of some type of Asian decent but did not know for sure. She later mentioned Vietnam. I heard a cry for the backroom and out toddles a chunky little fella. His mama said, "He loves the customers." He came right over to me and snuggled up against me. I reached down and hugged that baby and was immediately filled with love for him. Oh this what that orphanage will be like!? I so wanted to ask to take his picture but I was afraid mama was already creeped out by my baby obsession. The hug from this little fella was not just a hug. It was a hug representing the orphans of Vietnam and the promise that I would see them face to face. My heart can hardly wait!