Thursday, March 29, 2007 totally worked!!...

You Are Likely a First Born

At your darkest moments, you feel guilty.
At work and school, you do best when you're researching.
When you love someone, you tend to agree with them often.

In friendship, you are considerate and compromising.
Your ideal careers are: business, research, counseling, promotion, and speaking.
You will leave your mark on the world with discoveries, new information, and teaching people to dream.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

...a moment of silence...

...for the Sligh guy... We will miss didn't make Hasselhoff cry but there are many a fan shedding a tear over your departure tonight. Someday soon I hope to see you again, hiding behind your guitar, singing to your God. For tonight we'll just sit in the belly of the whale and think what coulda been...

...silly songs with sanjaya...

the part of the show where Sanjaya comes out and sings a "Silly Song"...with silly hair... and silly little girls will cry. A teeny part of me just wants him to come back every week just for that comedic break in the middle of the show. It won't be the same without him- but don't tell anyone!

Seriously though...

What is the poor guy supposed to do but put on a happy face, a "Phony Pony-Hawk" and keep on rockin’ since they KEEP VOTING FOR HIM.

And... the secret is revealed - it is not just 12 year old girls voting for the boy but also many, many Sirius Radio Howard Stern Fans. Yep, that lude, crude man and his minions is largely responsible for the madness that is Sanjaya.

OK... end of rant...for now...

Kiki - she looked much better in this dress than that GREEN one from last week. He song had more spark but I had forgotten about her by the end of the night...

Chris - His voice sounded great but he just didn’t step it up enough - I want that boy to fly and I sure hope he can do it.

Gina - Sounded great. Her voice is strong. Probably her best performance but I had forgotten about it by the end too.

Sanjaya - Please see above.

Haley - Pretty girl, nice voice...forgettable.

Phil - I like this song - it was good for his voice and I like him with a hat to frame those awesome blue eyes.

Melinda - Is just awesome - She had even more life in her song and is so comfortable on stage. I love, love that at the end of every magnificent performance she suddenly looks suprised that people were watching her.

Blake - boring - I think the beat box angle made him stand out and the rest - well maybe it’s just not my style.

Jordin - She showed some spark with this song. It may not have been the best vocally but its showed some spunk and stood out from the others because of that.

Chris R. - Did a good job. He is growing on me.

IF you cant get enough Idol and you want a laugh there is a FAKE Chris Sligh Blog here. It is irreverent and very funny. I read through some posts and it seems clean, although a bit eyebrow raising at spots. There are pics of the boy as a baby and - SANJAYA MAKEOVERS - too, too funny! If you want to check it out, please know I am not endorsing the content...

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

...a room after my own heart...

Rose Heights Church in Texas not only has a great Children's Ministry outlook which makes me happy in itself, but, they have also done a terrific job decorating their Sunday School Rooms.

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14. These rooms definitely welcome the children in...

...Kahlua Cake, Insomnia & Toddler Droppings...

The window is open in my bedroom and outside I can hear the birds singing away. They must be happy that the weather is FINALLY getting warm here. It was a balmy 18 degrees* yesterday and every child in the neighborhood was out soaking in the amazing weather.
*(that's18 celcius...65 farenheit)

Finally after months we seem to be crawling out of our house of perpetual sickness and squinting in the light.

Last night we made dinner for Big T. The girls were excited to cook Dad’s birthday meal and dessert. I was just excited to finally get it done. Big T’s birthday was, after all, in February!!

We had "A Chelsea Morning’s" Kahlua Cake that you can scroll down and find here. Except we used Starbuck’s Liqueur instead. Yuuummmy and easy. My 9 year old daughter, Pickle made it all by herself. It was moist, and did I mention easy!?

Cookie, my 10 year old, was in charge of the frosting, which was whipping cream and a piping bag. I really should have taken a picture because no words could do that beauty justice. Lets just say restraint is not her strong suit and at one point she squeezed the bag so hard the clip on the end popped off and sprayed whipped cream all over the kitchen.

Daddy felt special and reveled in being the"belated birthday boy". The kids were just happy to have cake because dessert is usually reserved for company and, since we’ve been living in a sick house for like, forever, we have had neither company, nor dessert for a while.

So, when bedtime came I lay down like normal to sleep and then just like that my mind went wild. Every think I could have thunk raced through my tired ol’ brain and I could not shut it off for the life of me... then I figured it out. The cake had coffee liquor in it - and, Starbucks to boot. And, while I love caffeine in the morning, having it at night it is not a good idea - even in a belated birthday cake.

And... while I was laying there restless and sooo tired I started thinking about my kids and how old they are getting. My baby boy is in Grade 7. I started reliving the days when they were so young. And just as I started getting all sentimental and nostalgic I remembered my first trip to the mall after baby number two... all started about ten years ago...

Weeks after my baby girl Cookie was born Big T was heading to the city for an appointment. I got the brilliant idea that I would tag along with the kids and have him drop us off at the mall. Bogged down with stroller, diaper bag, purse, newborn, two-year old and still very hormonal mommy.

As soon as I was able to strap every bag and baby to the stroller we were off on our shopping adventure. Which is when I realized that shopping with two young children is not so much fun. First one would need, you know, a bottle, and then one would want a snack. And then, after the snack is, um, processed it’s time to head to the family bathroom for a change.

And that is really where the story begins. I got C up on the change table, poooopy diaper off and as I reached for a new diaper I realized that I had forgot to pack anymore his size. No problem, I thought, I would just leave him - uh - uncovered while we motored down to the drugstore for some diapers. He was two, almost toilet trained and had just "gone"...we were safe for a little while.
And then I passed my favorite store. I was drawn in... yes I was....stroller, toddler and all.

Before I knew it I was excitedly pulling things off the rack and heading to the change room. Just as I was pulled together my the first outfit IT started.

By IT I mean the pooping.
Little C had a pair of OshKosh overall shorts on - only. And big, huge turds started falling out the one pant-leg and onto the floor of the store.

"Stop that!" I whispered loudly. Little C looked up, made a scrunchy face as he dropped another uh, toddler poop, onto the floor. It was then that I realized the change room had a curtain in that only came down as low as mid-calf. Outside said change room was a lovely saleslady!

I grabbed baby Cookie’s extra outfit and started scooping up the poop as fast as he could drop it. Because I was in the change room and no where near a garbage receptacle I shoved the whole mess in the diaper bag.

While I collected poop with one hand I was desperately trying to get the store clothes off without, well, getting anything on them, and back into MY clothes so I could get this incredible pooping toddler and his mortified momma OUT OF THAT STORE!

As soon as the clothes were off I dropped the last turd in the diaper bag, picked up my son in one arm, turned the stroller around with the other and flew ...

I sprinted down the length of the mall, stopping only when I got to the diaper aisle of the drug store. While I tried to find his size, I turned around only to see him start pooping again. I grabbed a package of diapers off the shelf, ripped them open and right in the middle of the aisle strapped a diaper on that boy.

Then I looked up at the security camera and smiled.

Motherhood really is a piece of cake!

Friday, March 23, 2007

...if the battle for souls is lost will not be because God was not strong enough will not be because Satan was too powerful
...but simply because
...the Saints did not show up to fight.

...just one...

The excitement in the air was palpable.

This Sunday morning the sun had come out and there was not a rain cloud in sight. Our hearts beat faster as we looked over to the nearby apartment buildings and envisioned the children racing to join us. This day was a long time coming. For months we had planned this summer outreach. We had painted props, practiced skits, handed out hundreds of flyer. We had prayed our hearts out. And now it was time.

And then from the direction of the apartment buildings came Christopher.

He marched purposefully towards the group, looking at no one in particular but rather up in the air waving his finger towards us.

"DO. YOU. WANT. TO. KNOW. MY. NAME?" He yelled at the top of his lungs. "MY NAME IS CHRISTOPHER!"

We introduced ourselves to our first visitor Christopher. He was an awkward boy who talked to loud and spoke at the wrong times. He was dressed in older clothes and his hair was messy. We were so glad he came.

Other than our "church kids" he was the only one who came.

The weeks of summer flew by and every Sunday, more children would wander over. They didn’t come in the hundreds but rather the tens...or even ones.

We got to know Christopher better as he barreled over faithfully each week. He lived with his mom in the apartment buildings. She didn’t have a car so we would often see this 10 year old riding his bike back and forth from the grocery store, bangs in hand. He didn’t have many friends. It was easier for the other children to stay their distance than get to know this boy.

But Christopher was resilient and feisty and he captured our hearts that summer.

As the leaves began to change to the beautiful shades of orange and red, our outreach finished for the year. Fall programs were beginning and we found a way for Christopher to join us.


As I planned my programs that next year and assessed how successful the summer was, I decided to measure my efforts not by the world, or even the church’s, definition of success.

Rather, I asked myself. "Was I faithful?"

I purposed to forgo the accolades of the saints for the approval of my God. If I was tired, I would persevere. If I was stuck, I would pray and ask for help. If a mass of children came through the doors, I would serve them to the best of my ability, and, when I fell short I would rely on the many hands and feet of Jesus that so faithfully came alongside to help me. And if only one came, I would pour out all I had.

In the throngs that followed Jesus on this Earth he looked out so many times and touched just one.

Just one.

If in the crowds of people we miss the individuals all our efforts will be in vain.

He saw me in a crowd as a little girl. Quietly going about my life, Jesus captured my face in His hands and showed me He had a plan that no other person in this world could fulfil but me.

I was just one.

One of billions he died to save.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

...Addison Needs Your Prayers...

Addison's mommy can usually be found here but today she is at the hospital with little Addison. If you read about her on her momma's blog you'll know that she is a fighter but today she needs your prayers.

This was posted on her grammy's blog.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007 tiny request...

Please. Please. Keep ALL 12 year old girls off the phone until Sanjaya has made a graceful exit from the competition. Do not let them vote or someone worthy of the top 10 will surely go home. Did y’all see that girl in the audience crying while that Sanjaya boy tried to rock the house???!!! I will need Depends if he stays another week for fear I will pee my pants watching him– it was too funny! And just to add to the demographic myth… my 9 & 10-year-old daughter swoon over him and his sawft voice too. Radio Disney is calling his name… His mama should hand him the phone…just saying.

And so on to the rest. Haley at least wore pants this week – albeit short shorts. But still last week I kept telling my girls she needed a pair of jeans with that shirt cause there was nooo way something that short is a dress.

Chris Richardson - was okay. Still a bit nasally but I can give him props for “keepin’ it real and classic.

Stephanie Edwards – I had high hopes for that song but she seemed to over-sing it. In my very non-musical opinion I think it should have been softened up in parts.

Blake Lewis – Well ok…the judges liked it but I just didn’t get it.

Lakisha Jones – Those diamonds are going to her head I think. This week she lost that quiet beauty that shines through those killer vocals. I hope it was temporary because fame is not good on self-esteem and character.

Phil Stacey – Well it was kinda funny seeing him run around with the mike stand – Bo Bice he is not… thankfully. It was pretty cool though and those eyes…

Jordin Sparks – What a beauty, voice and all. She really is great and the song was impeccable.

Sanjaya Malakar – Please see above…

Gina Glocksen - I always like me a good rock song but that was a bit frenetic. She is in her element as the “REALLY NICE” rocker chick.

Chris Sligh – Well, my husband said he is probably more comfortable on stage hiding behind a guitar doing worship. He just looked so awkward walking through that crowd – I think he is nervous still. But look at his “Fro-Patro” base, his pastor was there I think – that’s gotta keep you grounded. The vocals were good but I think there is more to him and I hope he gets a chance to show that… do you think they’ll do a gospel night?? Have Toby Mac and whoever come and coach - how cool would that be??!!

Melinda Doolittle – That girl has the wisdom to express her faith in ways the judges won’t find uh… “indulgent”. She may be meek and quiet but I do not think for a second she lacks self-esteem. It seems she knows who she is in Christ, where that voice comes from and who its for. I believe she was brought here for “such a time as this” and I can’t wait to see all she’s gonna do in the years to come!

I had this thought last night – if Sanjaya stays another week that means he will tour with them… please just send the boy home before they spend another week lost in a decade he has never heard before like the 80s!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

...Tale of Three Kings...

Sitting in the Belly of the Whale can be a lonely prospect but it is a place we will all end up in our journey through life. My first teaching on this came when I was on a youth retreat at about 16 years old. Our youth pastor used the book "The Tale of Three Kings" by Gene Edwards as his teaching material that weekend. It was series on brokenness and a pretty heavy subject for such a young crowd. But as he spoke the words resonated within me. He talked not of if we would would be broken but rather when. And, stuck in that place, how we deal with that pain defines who we will become when we finally find ourselves on dry land again.

Will we follow after the order of King Saul or after the order of King David?

One of my favorite lessons is of Saul throwing spears at David. Instead of becoming angry David allows himself to be broken and ultimately this helps to build his character. Saul, on the other hand, turns a "deep shade of bitter" when faced with pain and ultimately orchestrates his own downfall.

This book is beautifully written and the words weave a beautiful tapestry out of a very deep subject. It is not a big book and should be on every one's "Books I Need to Read in this Lifetime" list.

Here is an excerpt I found:

Well, dear reader, how nice to be with you once more. It is a privilege to spend this time with you. Thank you for meeting here, and I suggest we hasten into the playhouse, as I see that they have already dimmed the lights.

There are two seats reserved for us not too far from the stage. Quickly, let us take them.
I understand the story is a drama. I trust, though, you will not find it sad.

I believe we will find the story to be in two parts. In part 1 we shall meet an older king, Saul by name, and a young shepherd boy named David. In part 2 we shall once more meet an older king and a young man. But this time the older king is David and the young man is Absalom.

The story is a portrait (you might prefer to call it a rough charcoal sketch) of submission and authority within the kingdom of God.

Ah, they have turned off the lights, and the players have taken their places. The audience has quieted itself. The curtain is rising.

Our story has begun.


The almighty, living God turned to Gabriel and gave a command.

“Go, take these two portions of my being. There are two destinies waiting. To each unborn destiny give one portion of myself.”

Carrying two glowing, pulsating lights of Life, Gabriel opened the door into the realm between two universes and disappeared. He had stepped into the Mall of Unborn Destinies.

Gabriel spoke: “I have here two portions of the nature of God. The first is the very cloth of his nature. When wrapped about you, it clothes you with the breath of God. As water surrounds a person in the sea, so will his very breath envelop you. With this, the divine breath, you will have his power—power to subdue armies, shame the enemies of God, and accomplish his work on the earth. Here is the power of God as a gift. Here is immersion into the Spirit.”

A destiny stepped forward: “This portion of God is for me.”

“True,” replied the angel. “And remember, whoever receives such a great portion of power will surely be known by many. Ere your earthly pilgrimage is done, your true character will be known; yea, it will be revealed by means of this power. Such is the destiny of all who want and wield this portion, for it touches only the outer person, affecting the inner person not one whit.

Outer power will always unveil the inner resources or the lack thereof.”

The first destined one received the gift and stepped back.

Gabriel spoke again.

“I have here the second of two elements of the living God. This is not a gift but an inheritance. A gift is worn on the outer person; an inheritance is planted deep inside—like a seed. Yet, even though it is such a small planting, this planting grows and, in time, fills all the inner person.”

Another destiny stepped forward. “I believe this element is to be mine for my earthly pilgrimage.”

“True,” responded the angel again. “I must tell you that what has been given to you is a glorious thing—the only element in the universe that can change the human heart. Yet even this element of God cannot accomplish its task nor grow and fill your entire inner being unless it is compounded well. It must be mixed lavishly with pain, sorrow, and crushing.”

The second destined one received the inheritance and stepped back.

Beside Gabriel sat the angel Recorder. He dutifully entered into his ledger the record of the two destinies.

“And who shall these destinies become after they go through the door to the visible universe?” asked Recorder.

Gabriel replied softly, “Each, in his time, shall be king.”


The youngest son of any family bears two distinctions: He is considered to be both spoiled and uninformed. Usually little is expected of him. Inevitably, he displays fewer characteristics of leadership than the other children in the family. As a child, he never leads. He only follows, for he has no one younger on whom to practice leadership.

So it is today. And so it was three thousand years ago in a village called Bethlehem, in a family of eight boys. The first seven sons of Jesse worked near their father’s farm. The youngest was sent on treks into the mountains to graze the family’s small flock of sheep.

On those pastoral jaunts, this youngest son always carried two things: a sling and a small, guitarlike instrument. Spare time for a sheepherder is abundant on rich mountain plateaus where sheep can graze for days in one sequestered meadow. But as time passed and days became weeks, the young man became very lonely. The feeling of friendlessness that always roamed inside him was magnified. He often cried. He also played his harp a great deal. He had a good voice, so he often sang. When these activities failed to comfort him, he gathered up a pile of stones and, one by one, swung them at a distant tree with something akin to fury.

When one rock pile was depleted, he would walk to the blistered tree, reassemble his rocks, and designate another leafy enemy at yet a farther distance.

He engaged in many such solitary battles.

This shepherd-singer-slinger also loved his Lord. At night, when all the sheep lay sleeping and he sat staring at the dying fire, he would strum upon his harp and break into quiet song. He sang the ancient hymns of his forefathers’ faith. While he sang he wept, and while weeping he often broke out in abandoned praise—until mountains in distant places lifted up his praise and tears and passed them on to higher mountains, until they eventually reached the ears of God.
When the young shepherd did not praise and when he did not cry, he tended to each and every sheep and lamb. When not occupied with his flock, he swung his companionable sling and swung it again and again until he could tell every rock precisely where to go.

Once, while singing his lungs out to God, angels, sheep, and passing clouds, he spied a living enemy: a huge bear! He lunged forward. Both found themselves moving furiously toward the same small object, a lamb feeding at a table of rich, green grass. Youth and bear stopped halfway and whirled to face one another. Even as he instinctively reached into his pocket for a stone, the young man realized, “Why, I am not afraid.”

Meanwhile, brown lightning on mighty, furry legs charged at the shepherd with foaming madness. Impelled by the strength of youth, the young man married rock to leather, and soon a brook-smooth pebble whined through the air to meet that charge.

A few moments later, the man—not quite so young as a moment before—picked up the little lamb and said, “I am your shepherd, and God is mine.”

And so, long into the night, he wove the day’s saga into a song. He hurled that hymn to the skies again and again until he had taught the melody and words to every angel that had ears. They, in turn, became custodians of this wondrous song and passed it on as healing balm to brokenhearted men and women in every age to come.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


...little T & big T...

Ever since we began the process of adoption God has brought people from every side into my life to speak understanding into my heart. Birth moms, adoptees, other parents. This story spoke to the unending bond a child may have to their birthparents. Even after decades the loss still resonates.

It makes me wonder yet again how we honour the past and the losses our little T will face as he grows up. I've been told that to make peace with past losses frees you to go forward in life. But, I think like everything it comes in waves, no more than a person can handle at once.

His birth parents may not have been perfect or able... His adopted parents will fall short of the ideal but we can point him to the perfect parent in his Heavenly Father. The father that will never let him down, let him go or fail him - even once.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

...My Little Man...

NOTE - This is not C's real Hair!!

The first time they met both wore diapers. The details are fuzzy but, I can't say that it was an instant friendship even. Little D was likely wielding a ball and Little C was probably reading a book or playing with a toy farm implement. They have never had a lot in common actually. D has always been more physical and rough and tumble and C more cerebral, a thinker, an arguer.

But they always wanted to be together.

In fact for a year they were both home schooled and saw each other almost every day. Differences aside there were a few things they both loved to to - like canoeing. And a few time the boys and their dads went away for a weekend together to enjoy nature and freshly caught fried fish. They both loved to climb trees (what boy doesn't) and play video games. They loved nicknames and came up with Coco and Dodo for each other when they were quite young - the names have stuck.

Unfortunately their encounters would often end in some sort of disagreement that the moms tried to carefully negotiate. They were so different that they had a hard time seeing eye to eye. Many times both moms thought it would be easier on both of them if they each found another buddy.

But that's not how best friends work.

Eventually C left the church they had both attended and their contact dropped off greatly. Then not long ago C felt strongly to go visit D again. D's mom has battled cancer for years but she was really not doing well and C was concerned that D needed a friend. Two minutes into their first phone call in a year they had picked up where they left off and spent an hour chatting on the phone, making plans to get together.

This time around there has been no arguments. (I wish D's mom could see it!) They have more in common now and get along awesome.

The whole story breaks my heart and makes it swell with a maternal pride. You see, C, is my little man. 12 years old. Through this, I have seen a glimpse of the man that he is becoming. I have seen the heavy burden he has willingly taken on for his friend. His grandma died from cancer a few months ago and he has been willing to revist that sorrow so that he can understand his friend more. I have seen the weight of compassion, and the tears, in his eyes. I have heard the prayers. I have heard him listen with an open heart to his friend share the sorrow of losing his mom to the cancer. He tells me he will be there for D when he needs to say goodbye. It makes me look forward to seeing this child of mine grow in to a man.

Proverbs 18:24 says "A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother." I think that's the kind of friendship they have.

Despite the heartbreaking circumstances with D's momma I have seen so much happiness come from their friendship. They have smiled often, they have laughed, they have played. boys will...they have been rambunctious and mischievous and well...boys...

Which is just fine with me because while I like to see glimpses of the man he is becoming, a big part of me wants to let them be kids as long as they possibly can.

Monday, March 12, 2007

...plunged beneath that flood...

If ever a man knew what it was like to live in the belly of the whale this man did. Born into a family of four children his father was a minister and mother a loving soul who died during the birth of William’s youngest brother when he was just six years old.

As a child he was sent away to boarding school where he endured years of bullying. I can only imagine the sadness in that little boys eyes as he must have dearly longed for a mommy to wipe his tears away.

William grew up in these institutions and finally graduated as a lawyer. He passed the bar and was up for a prestigious job with the government when his first bout of depression and insanity hit. He was terrified to stand before his prospective employers, and, in his manic state he attempted suicide. A letter written after that time describes the traumatic events that unfolded. His plan began with the purchase of drugs that make his death simple and quick but every time he would try to take it an incredible shaking began that would not allow him to get he liquid to his mouth. Distraught, he tried to lay on a knife that broke before it entered his body. In agony and despair he lay there blind to everything but his own pain until the guilt of what he had tried overwhelmed him. It was shortly after this event that he penned the words so familiar to churchgoers. Written not as brilliant poetry, but rather from a place of brokenness.
There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all their guilty stains.
The dying thief rejoiced to see that fountain in his day;
And there have I, though vile as he, washed all my sins away.
Dear dying Lamb, Thy precious blood shall never lose its power
Till all the ransomed church of God be saved, to sin no more.
E’er since, by faith, I saw the stream Thy flowing wounds supply,
Redeeming love has been my theme, and shall be till I die.
Then in a nobler, sweeter song, I’ll sing Thy power to save,
When this poor lisping, stammering tongue lies silent in the grave.
Lord, I believe Thou hast prepared, unworthy though I be,
For me a blood bought free reward, a golden harp for me!’
Tis strung and tuned for endless years, and formed by power divine,
To sound in God the Father’s ears no other name but Thine.

Olney Hymns (1779)--'Praise for the Fountain Opened'

In the future there will be a fountain, where David's descendants and the people of Jerusalem can wash away their sin and guilt.

Zechariah 13:1

As a young man William met a friend who invited him home for a short visit. This visit lasted the rest of his life, as he was taken into the family as a cherished member. The Rev. Morley and his wife Mary were evangelical ministers who surely took this lost young man under their wing providing him with a loving father and mother that he had never had before. While 18 months after moving in Morley Unwin died his wife Mary, William’s second mother, continued to care for him throughout her life.

The family relocated to Olney, Buckinghamshire at the request of a Rev. John Newton (famous for writing Amazing Grace). Here William finally found his life’s work. Not as a lawyer as he had intended but rather a Missionary and Hymn writer. Olney was a poor village where most made their living making lace. Together with Newton they ministered to the people of this village and opened a church.

William Cowper’s story did not play out as he had imagined. I’m sure he would have wished for his mother to have lived longer. That he would be free from the depression that plagued him. That he would practice law and attain great wealth and notoriety. That he would be immune to poverty and loss.

But God had different plans for him.

What William considered a weak and shameful state birthed words of great value. Their timeless truths ring out over centuries of change and still resonate in our hearts today. He was not known for his vast wealth, his great discoveries or even a dynamic ministry but rather for his vulnerability, as he laid out his weakness for all to see. It was in that place He discovered the power of God’s love to redeem us all.

GOD moves in a mysterious way,
His wonders to perform;
He plants his footsteps in the sea,
And rides upon the storm.
Olney Hymns (1779)--'Light Shining out of Darkness'

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

...from the belly - lite...

Fox n' Friends and coffee in the morning.

I get my dairy from all their cheese... what a great way to get my news fix. This morning they were talking about people being smuggled into the country illegally. The one host Brian asked the other - very blonde guy - when did your family come over from his usual serious manner he said, "Brian, my people came over in a shipment from IKEA." **groan**

Flipping the channels...

AMERICAN IDOL - those boys got step up their game...

...I'm still that Sligh guys biggest fan. But I knew that DC talk son "We all Wanna Be Loved" - he choked up in it and lost the power of the song... but props to him for wanting to share a message in his music!

Blake is great but although I might vote for him I probably wouldn't buy his album.

Phil Stacey - Who wouldn't be charmed by those blue eyes. (I've been know for falling for a blue-eyed boy before!! -Big T!) But Phil really needs to go home, sing for his girls and tuck
them in at night.

Sundance and Brandon - I hope they get another shot next week.

Sanjaya, its really time to say goodbye to AI. My girls (9&10) love him though. It makes me think he could get a deal at Radio Disney or something. I could see him and his HUGE smile dancing the hula with Mickey & Minnie.

Chris & Jared - did they sing??

If you're too impatient to wait until Thursday you can get a sneak peek here. They make predictions by tracking busy signals or something - kinda like an AI spoiler.
"There's a fine line between fishing
and just standing on the shore looking foolish."
Am I really fishing or just standing on the shore going through the motions?? As I have been mulling this over it reminds me to keep casting my net in the water and trying make a difference in this world.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

...a picture worth a thousand laughs...

This just makes me smile.... thanks for coming out... as you might guess we are having a snow day AGAIN... every road in the area is closed and the kids have been playing in the basement...who knows what they might be up to...

...clean up on aisle 6...

So my big C would be MORTIFIED if he knew I was mentioning this one. hehe... he's 12

About 10 years ago (when he was 2!) he was just mastering this potty-ing thing. We had come shopping and were over in the toy section when C told me he needed to go. I was carefully picking out a toy for a party and the washrooms were waaaay over on the other side of the store ... so I piped up, "Can you just wait a minute?" He looked at me with a wiggle but he didn't say"no" outright so in my desire to finish up I kept shopping. Not a minute later the wiggling stopped and he got a really serious look on his face. I looked down and he had peed right into his rubber boot. Cute. I grabbed the first toy I could and got ready to hightail it to the washroom, "c'mon C." I called...and then turned around to see him pull his bright yellow boot of his foot and poured the contents into a puddle on the floor.

I can only imagine the look on my face... and then came the dilemna. Do I confess to the 17 year old employee and ask her to mop up on aisle 6 or ... run? I was torn really,but in the end I figured at 17 I would rather clean-up what looked like a puddle of snow, than what I knew was a puddle of toddler pee. So, for better or worse I took my items and proceeded to the check out, head hung just low enough that the cameras couldn't catch a glimpse of my whole face.

...Digging Out from Under...

I’ve lost it!!

You know the cord that attaches my digital camera to my computer so I can download pictures. It may be under a pile of laundry, or hidden in a drawer somewhere but it is definitely not where it is supposed to be - which is, by the way, in the camera bag. I have looked all over and even offered the kids $5 if they could find it... but it seems that little grey cord does not want to make an appearance at this party. Which means friends, that you will all have to use your imagination for now.

Think of a taupe mini-van covered in a blanket of white and sunk deep in the snow that is our driveway. Think of a big blue tractor with a yellow rope attached to the front as it pulls, and pulls the poor little van out of the driveway. Yeah - its free! Then the next picture has the snowblower on the back of the above mentioned blue tractor blowing out our driveway in a fog of powdery crystals. You might just see the sun shining and reflecting happily on the snow oh, neighbours helping people get out of drifts and kids in their pajamas cheering through the windows for today is yet another "SNOW DAY!!" for them. In the middle of it all is my darling husband.

Yesterday we got a wonderful treat for our anniversary. A snow day. Husband, wife, the four kids, dog & cat stuck inside all day. It was the kind of bliss you can only experience after so many years together.

Before I go on... I noted yesterday that the highway to the place we got married has been closed just about every March 5 since that time. The year we got married the day was sunny, warm and beautiful... just goes to show you God’s perfect timing in everything!

I’ve learned after all these years that humor is a vital component in marriage. Learning to laugh at ourselves and each other is important. I’ve been laughing at my husband a bit these days and threatened to BLOG HIM... here it goes.

The first snowfall of the year dawned - the kids were excited and C, by 12 year old son, wanting to make some money asked if he could shovel the driveway instead of the tractor. We agreed to pay him the going rate and I watched him lug out the shovel and clean out our rather large driveway.

Then the snow really started to fall.

Daily it piled up and the initial entreprenuerial ambition of C waned. I suggested to my husband that maybe we should ask the guy with the snow-blower to do it. My suggestion was filed under "R" for ridiculous. Ridiculous to pay someone to clean it out when I can just drive really fast and make a path through it.

Which, I may explain, is like a Disney ride, complete with the flying snow all around us.
Maybe, I thought, he just needs that adreneline pumping bit of fun everyday. There were worse pursuits I could think of.

But really - we should pay to have the snowblower come and clean the driveway out. However, don’t tell husband that ‘cause as I have learned - it’s a bit of a touchy subject!!

Even if people get stuck.

The first one was a guy who came to bring his tax return. He drives a big pick-up truck and was really suprised that husband could drive through it. I laughed and wondered if he would be the one to bring reason to my man...

Then, our dog got out and into the neighbours garbage (if any of them read this we are soooo sorry btw!!). The dog catcher came to the door to give us a warning...slap on the hand...stern-look. He went back to get in his truck and got STUCK. Yup, I peeked through the curtains as a neighbour came, hooked him up to his car, helped him shovel and pulled him out. I told husband when he came home. "Well, if he couldn’t get out he shoulda parked on the road!" was the response...

Then more snow fell and husband got stuck. A kind neighbour came over and tried to pull him out only to get stuck also.

"Honey." I said that night - thinking this was a teachable moment. "Maybe we should call the guy with the snowblower." But alas, in his eyes the driveway was just perfect.
Another morning and another afternoon our friendly neighbours came over and shovelled around tires and pulled husband's van out of the driveway... but still no call to the snowblower guy.

Then yesterday, just ahead of the roads closing husband and Little T came home. The snow was so bad that he couldn’t see to get in the garage - which turned out to be a non-issue because he got stuck halfway up the driveway. Which is where the van sat, through the storm, until morning.

This morning dawned sunny and bright. Our poor little van awash in snow. The neighbours pulled on their winter clothes and peeked out to see if husband needed to be pulled out yet again. [They are sooo polite these neighbours. Not once have they suggested that maybe - just maybe, he could have the driveway cleaned out so the whole crew could get to work on time!] Neighbours came over and shovelled around the tires, hoooked up the rope and pulled - but alas...this was the time our van would not budge.

In the distance was - yup you guessed it - the snowplow guy and his BIG BLUE TRACTOR!! I did a little happy dance - got out my camera for pictures of the big event. Blue tractor pulled our van out of the driveway and began to blow all the snow far into my front yard. The kids stood by the window mesmerized. They had seen other neighbours get their driveways cleaned but NEVER at our house...this was a special event.

Husband came in, looked out the window, smiled sheepishly and said, "That was easy - I don’t know why I didn’t think of doing that earlier!"

That’s why I love the guy!

The whole thing got me thinking. How many times do we find ourselves letting everything pile up in our own driveway of life. We make excuses and push down our problem like the snow. Layer after layer finally builds until we realize we can’t make it through. Our own little shovel won’t make a dent in the mess. It's only then we finally call for help. Admit that all we’ve left undone has overwhelmed our lives and we just can’t do it on our own. We look up sheepishly and realize that help, a loving Heavenly father, was there all the time - if we’d just made the call.
Here’s to us all learning how to dig out the easy way! And an early spring...

Friday, March 2, 2007

...It's a Snow Day!...

Welcome to our snowy corner of the woods. The neighbourhood is buzzing with action - today is a snow day! Make sure your kids bring their snow gear to join the fun - its perfect packing snow for forts and igloos. If they don't have the right stuff - don't worry, we always have a stash of extra mitts and hats.

We can hang out by the fireplace - I have freshly brewed Starbucks - or I can get you something cold to drink. Its been a busy few days around here - lots of sadness. This is the perfect excuse to sit, chat about simple things and cherish the day...

Please leave a message and I'll be sure to come visit - its so much easier to travel in cyberspace - you don't need to worry about the roads being closed!

Thursday, March 1, 2007

...Just for Today...

Just for today I’ll let them play in the snow. Decked out in coats and mitts and hats until I can barely see their faces. I'll close the door and watch as the backyard becomes a huge white sandbox. Perfect for making snow forts. Perfect for layng down in and letting the sparkling flakes fall onto cold rosy cheeks. Perfect for soaking up the warth of the winter sun and basking in its glow. Perfect for making a host of angels and deep footprints.

Just for today I’ll serve them hot chocolate and not worry about how much sugar is in it! I’ll bake cookies and serve chicken soup and crackers for lunch.

Just for today.

Just for today I’ll listen in on their conversations. Hearing the bravado, the dreams and plans that reside in their young hearts.

Just for today I’ll let them play "Heart and Soul" on the piano over and over and over. And as they play I can see glimpses of great masterpieces that may someday flow through their fingers.
Just for today I will watch them make castles and fight battles against pirates. I will stay silent as the floor is filled with colourful blocks... a floor that too soon will be emptied of legos and other toys.

Just for today I tackle the pile of soggy boots and coats dropped at the door, and put them away for them. I will unload the dishwasher, set and clear the table, put laundry in the hamper and let them play.

Just for today I will quietly watch them take the cushions of the couch; make hideouts and caves, and not complain about the mess.

Just for today I pray they will see, not their clumsy, growing bodies, but the beauty of the creations they are. May they know they have purpose and significance. May they grasp the strength of the cross in their weakness. May they know pure, unadulterated love and acceptance.

And when the darkness settles in, I will gather them 'round, play silly card games, watch their favorite tv shows, serve popcorn with lots of butter and cuddle by the fire under cosy blankets.

Just for today.

Just for today when their sleepy heads hit the pillow, I will pray that their dreams are filled with possibilities. That any voice of doubt or discouragement would be silenced as they feel us cheer them on. I Pray that they will hear "you can do it" ringing in their ears, deafening the the other voices.

Tomorrow will surely come, and with it the heartache that will grow them into strong adults. It will knock chips off their shoulders, fortify their faith and their backbone. It will cause them to know beyond all doubt that their God is enough... no matter what they may face. It will be hard and it will be necessary...and it will be good.

But just for today, I’ll let them be children. I’ll shelter them. I’ll be their champion and draw them so close that no one can hurt them. Protect them...

Just for today.