Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Yes, I am rich indeed.

i'm up.   it nears 2am.   no.   i'm not stressed.   just decompressing here in blog space.

I read this in "the up side" section of April 2009's Guideposts...
"If you want to feel rich, just count all the things you have that money can't buy."
- Words engraved on a money clip from the company, The Spoon Sisters

A few minutes ago, I heard a quiet shuffling sound coming down the hall towards me.  Almost immediately, I knew what it was.  A small boy, carrying a stuffed koala, whispered that he couldn't sleep good.  My reply, "How about I climb in bed with you?"  He accepted.  I crept down the hallway to his room, except to bump the gate going downstairs.  Slowly, I lowered him into his bed and slipped under the covers with him.  He rolled towards me and I could feel his warm breath on my face as I drank in the sweet smell of a freshly bathed boy in clean sheets.  I kissed his tiny forehead over and over.  Then, quietly, I tiptoed out.

Yes, I am rich indeed.

This afternoon, tired from an early morning and grocery shopping, I lay my head on C's chest and nestled into his neck.  He was warm and his masculine scent, pleasantly familiar.  I napped for a few glorious minutes before he had to leave.

Yes, I am rich indeed.

Last week, I savored the smell of chlorine and sunscreen as K lay her sun-kissed head on my shoulder and we snuggled under a down blanket while watching some tv.

Yes, I am rich indeed.

a little reflection

Tonight was just what I needed.  Funny how things turn out.  All part of a plan.

After what I would describe as a slightly catastrophic afternoon, I was uplifted by my church family, my sisters in Christ.  Tonight's lesson was on the death of Sarah in Genesis 23.  Sarah lived to be 127 years old and when she passed, Abraham wept and mourned her death.  And after awhile he got up - it does not say how long he mourned, could've been days or weeks, we don't know. 

We all have "human props" in this life.  Someone close to listen when you are troubled, someone to lean on and lift you up.  To Abraham, Sarah was his most important "human prop".  She stood by him when he made wrong decisions.  She followed him as a sojourner for many years.  She was his all.  Now she was gone and after his mourning, he needed to pick up and go on. 

This was the case for us this afternoon.  After a surprising blow, we cried and mourned the loss of something we held important to us.  Then, we picked ourselves up and we did just as Abraham did, we moved on.

I was not prepared for this bombshell, though I knew it was a possibility.  Earlier in the week, after praying, I had found a peace about the situation, but now it seemed the world was falling apart.  I knew it really wasn't, God had a plan, even if we didn't know what it was yet.  But, LORD, you are my shield, my wonderful God who gives me courage ~Psalm 4:3.  A door does not close without another being opened.  LORD, you are my rock, the one who saves me ~Psalm 19:14.   

I have faith, that all will be fine.  That we will be stronger in the end.  Stronger in the Lord.  A stronger marriage.  Stronger individuals.  Our faith will have grown.  And our children will witness this faith and themselves, grow stronger in the Lord.  It will be for His glory.
Our journal assignment was this..."Because of the power of the resurrection, these are my thoughts in reference to my future..."  My faith will be put to the test.  My future is uncertain, but unwavering in my love for the LORD.  This course of events is leading us to a new future.  One that could be very different from our past and present.  I am not afraid of taking new steps.  George Mueller writes "The beginning of anxiety is the end of faith, and the beginning of true faith is the end of anxiety."  I believe this whole-heartedly.  It has been true in my own life and in my own walk.

Lastly, we sang this song and it filled my soul and welled my eyes with tears because at that very moment, that's exactly where I needed to be.  The words...
Surely the presence of the Lord is in this place.
I can feel His mighty power and His grace.
I can hear the brush of angels wings.
I see glory on each face.
Surely the presence of the Lord is in this place.

I am not ashamed.  I am not angry.  I am not disappointed.  I may not always agree, but I am your cheerleader.  I am your follower.  I want to be the wind in your sails.  I want to see you smile.  I want to see you thrive.  I am onboard.  I am ready. 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

how he rolls

This is how our boy rolls...

Last week, we went to the pool.  He got this splinter, more than 1/2" long and about as big around as 2 toothpicks, while eating his pb&j.  It ended in us visiting Nana's work where they extracted it tiny piece by tiny piece.  It was not pretty.  He was brave though, he didn't cry, just buried his face in a pillow and growled when it became too much.

The very next day, we were at a cookout.  He flipped off a hammock and wacked his eye on a landscaping timber.  He cried and when we got home, it was swollen and red.  Now, it looks like this...

I cannot begin to tell you how many boo-boos this man has had, but we have pictures to prove it.  We've been to the emergency room for this kind of stuff and he's had indentations  in his forehead for some time from these bumps and bruises.  they're now gone.  K has never had this kinda trouble, but he's prone to accidents.  Here's a couple of the worst...

We were at the new house of some friends, helping them paint. He was sliding down a big card board box and managed to crack the bridge of his nose on a 5 gallon bucket of paint.  Nice, huh?

This happened at pre-school.   The playground had been off limits for weeks due to snow  and the first day they got to go out after the ground dried up, he smacked his forehead into a pole.  It truly looked like a devilled egg protruding from his forehead.

After all of these crazy events, I've learned some kids are just prone to accidents.  (i.e. our kid)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Today, we picked up a few groceries,
got haircuts,
hit the pool,
started a new read,
and patiently waited for cousins
while seated in the warm grass relishing some girl talk.

They've played trains, Wii, wrestled.
Made bracelets and necklaces,
designed their own fashions, 
painted nails. 

The animals are fed, chickens are in.

We've started the Prince of Persia,
devoured mountains of popcorn,
taken an intermission
to eat a second dinner of
doctored sloppy tacos,
watermelon and ice cream.

We've made beds,
brushed teeth,
snuggled down into cool sheets,
and nestled under warm blankets.

we are enjoying cousins.

Life is good.

Monday, July 11, 2011


I woke up to this.

She marveled at this.

He swam like a fish.  best he could.

And she, like a mermaid.

It was a good day.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Coon huntin and headbands, whatta mix!

I'm back.  No woe is me.  Yay me!  And yay you!  Nana and K have taken off to let the dogs run at Uncle J's and get a caramel frappe while the man sleeps and I have two seconds of peace.  It promises to be a long week with C in Illinois and I'm thankful for just a few quiet minutes.  The calm before the storm.

Why is the man sleeping at 7:15pm, you ask?  Long story, made short (or maybe not so much) - we met some friends last night with their kids to do a summer family coon hunt.  The moon was bright and the weather was going to be pleasant.  We all enjoy coon hunting (even though it's not often that we get to go as a family, it's mostly a man thing.)  Plus, we ladies thought it would be a nice quick trip...we were going close to home, so we would be back at a decent hour.  Not so, friends, not so.

We park and make our way through the field and to the corner.  Big Boss is off, leaving Banjo and Daisy to wait their turn.  We wait a little.  Then, they go next, but Dais returns and hovers.   On the GPS, Boss is off and headed for the river, then the road.  Eventually, we find ourselves back in the trucks and parking on the side of a back road, trekking into the wild again.  We hike up and down the mountain and over large streams, through the briars and spider webs until we finally catch up to them.  We let Dais go again and she's off with the big boys huntin coons, or so we think.  Banjo comes back smelling some kinda bad!  It's obvious he hasn't treed a coon, but a schmelly-welly skunk.  At this point, it's decided, we're callin it a night.   Banjo rolls and scruffs himself in the field the entire time we're walking and the smell burns our noses and throats.  You can taste skunk in your mouth.  On the other hand, we now have to find our way to the trucks.  Thankful for C's GPS, (that also tracks the dogs' collars, yes, it is quite fancy and exciting, even if it is a boy toy!) we find our way out of the woods, but not before being stalked by some donkeys who are not in the least bit pleased that we are trespassing in their field.  They hee-haw their necks off for a few minutes until we find a fence to jump.  The kids are petrified and crying due to the crazed donkey scene and C gives them his best karate kick.  Which neither scares nor comes close to touching the insane donkey trio, it's just an act to frighten them off.  Safe and sound, we were hoofin' it on the pavement back to the trucks again.  We walk a total of 3 miles, even the munchkins!  We finally arrive home around midnight, give the kids and ourselves baths and hit the hay around 12:45. 

This morning was the normal routine.  Sunday school.  We skipped church service and had lunch out because C would be leaving after lunchtime for the airport.  Then, knowing they needed a catch-up, I told the natives it was time for a teensy, weensy nap.  Needless to say, that did not go over well and they never actually fell asleep.  I take that back, K did, but then the man woke her up.  Next, Nana came over to save the day and surprise us with some dinner.  We did the usual.  Tour the flowers, garden, chickens, played with the dogs, and decided we would watch a movie.  That all went pretty well, but the man was now fit to be tied and got himself in a bit of trouble that landed him in his room for a timeout where he cried his little eyes to sleep in two minutes.  That, is why he is sleeping at this time a'day or night, rather.  I'm praying he'll make it til morning without waking.

OK, now, onto some fun sewing stuff.  While the natives were supposed to be napping, I was working on this from foofanagle...

One of K's friends has a birthday coming up next weekend and we're thinking of making her a couple of these, accompanying some matching tank tops.  The instructions are so simple and there's even a template

I finally completed beading on the quilted table runner and it now looks like this...

Just a little beading here and a little beading there...

And then, there's this stack of fabric that I have BIG plans for.

I think it's gonna take a bit to complete this and I'm not yet saying just what that is.


Thursday, July 7, 2011

core dump

To try and relinquish my mind of all its' junk, I'm putting it here...

I want one of these, but our garden is not expected to produce enough produce (ha ha) this year to justify putting 80 bucks into this.  My mind asks, would it be worth it to purchase it now or should I just wait?  Will they cost more next year?  In my trusty canning cookbook, it says, a deep pressure canner can double as a hot water bath canner (you just don't lock the lid.)  So, since the two hand-me-down hot water bath canners I've accumulated are not in the best of shape, should I buy one now?  What about for my birthday?  Or Christmas?  It would be dual purpose, right?

Next, why are the books I want to read always checked out or none of our frequented libraries carry them? 
The Help
Extraordinary Women: Discovering the Dream God Created for You
Let There Be Light, The Inspirational Achievements of a Man Born Blind
Men are Like Waffles, Women are Like Spaghetti
Safekeeping: Some True Stories from a Life
Swallow the Ocean: A Memoir

Why haven't I made time to hit the pool this summer?

Why can't I sew a straight line?  Really.  Is it that hard?

Why do my gifts/skills seem like nothing to me when everyone else things they're so grand?  I feel like C when he says, "I'm a jack of all trades, a master of none."  It does feel good to hear others marvel over my talents, but I don't make a big deal about it because I don't like being the center of attention.

That also leads to C's complaint, why can't I ever take a compliment without off-setting it with "Well, I thought it could've been better if I'd have..."?

Why am I dying to go camping at Jellystone?  I like camping without the crowd.  I know why, it's the waterslide.  Definitely.  Also, I dread going camping at a campground when you have to make reservations.  It just takes the fun out of it somehow.

Why did I sign up to take a quilting class tomorrow?  I want to learn to quilt.  Correctly.  Just not this week.  Maybe I'll cancel.

Why didn't I remember to sketch Mary's top last week during Bible Study.  I really wanted to duplicate it.  Oh, yeah, that's right, I'm too busy doing what I should be doing.  Bible Study!

Why haven't I started on the other top that I'm dying to make?  Oh yeah, life calls, you can't sew all the time. 

And why didn't I buy the rest of that bolster of fabric that was on clearance for $1.50/yd.  Oh, yeah, we have a budget to live by!

Our anniversary is coming up in a couple of weeks, wondering what we should do for that?

Why can't I get my butt to town this week to drop off stuff at the thrift shop, return my library book, and pick up some groceries?

Why can't we live without a government, since the one we have is crap?

Why don't they just fire the Board of Supervisors since they suck?!

Am I the only one who's burdened by my own mind on odd days/weeks?

There's more, it's just stuck in a web right now.  This mind of mine runs at a million miles an hour nearly 24/7.  What is wrong with me?

Are you feeling crazy now too?  I surely hope not.

some cheese for my whine, please

I'm beginning to wonder,  do I ever not feel tired?  Week after week I am exhausted by some crazy schedule and it's supposed to be summer!  A time for relaxing, right?

Last week ushered in a long, holiday weekend, refreshments for Bible study and back-to-back nights of studies that have just plain worn me down this week.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the studies that I'm currently attending.  It's just the thought of being gone, away from my family, that tires my mind, leading to a then, exhausted body.

It is my mind, it is my demise.  It's constantly running, filled with schedules, organizing, prioritizing and "home executive duties".  As a kid, it felt like school would never end and summer seemed to last forever. It's funny, once you grow up, how time flies. Our summer is half over!  This weekend, we have soccer on Saturday morning and a party that evening.  I am craving camping since late winter and it is relentless.  We have yet to do any camping.  Weekends are so busy.  Maybe a day by the pool with a good book would ease my mind?

After a trip to the Green Valley Book Fair last weekend, I've been reading A Three Dog Life by Abigail Thomas.  It's a fantastic, heart-wrenching read.  Makes me thankful for my normal, but busy, everyday life.  I am thankful for God's blessings of health and happiness. 

A Three Dog Life goes a little something like this...
'Australian Aborigines slept with their dogs for warmth on cold nights, the coldest being a "three dog night." - Wikipedia.'  Abigail's doorman calls to say, "Your dog is in the elevator." Why?  Her husband, Rich, was walking the dog.  Where is he?  Quickly, she finds he has been hit by a car.  When he begins to recover, it appears things will slowly go back to an almost normal life.  He seems pretty average with a few exceptions, but when the story finally unravels, it's evident that Rich will be forced to spend the rest of his life in a facility that specializes in brain injury.  Abigail finds herself in a new world.  Moving out of the big city, to a small, country town near the nursing facility where Rich now resides, she begins a new life.  With her dogs, a love for knitting and friendships,
she learns to survive this austere tragedy and in spite of everything, discovers gratefulness.

Friday, July 1, 2011

our week in review

I know I haven't been here in awhile,
so I feel the need to do some catch-up.

Sunday, we shipped K off to 4-H Camp.
Monday's mild weather ushered us out for some target practice.
'Cuz he knew his sissy was doing this very same thing at camp, too.

It was just the two of us.

Daisy-Boo serenaded us with her complaints.

Mama and her babies graced us with their presence.
She's so beautiful with her white speckles.

We're missing 3 hens now.
Not-so Fantastic Mr. Fox and a friend were spotted in the field behind the house.
They're dead meat!

Last week, I took a canning class.
Previously, I knew nothing about canning and up until recently,
I'd never had the desire to sew, garden, can.
Anything absurdly domesticated.
Monday night, we made mulberry jam.
'Cuz we're drowning in mulberries here.

 This morning, I was weeding in the garden and the UPS man drove by.
He went to the next house, so I didn't think anything of it.
Then, he came to our driveway and because the dogs were making such a ruckus,
he honked the horn and I ran through the yard, muck boots and all, to get my package.
I knew it!  It was my canning cookbook!...

Now, check out this quilted table runner I'm working on.
I'm gonna hand stitch some glass beads on to it,
hoping to give it a little extra.

I've never, ever quilted anything.
So, I started with the simplest of patterns.
How can you go wrong with four triangles to form a square?
Answer:  you cannot
Boring, but simple
Sometimes, I really like simple.

Also, it's totally wrinkled because K wore it on the first day at camp
and it hasn't made it to the washer yet,
but she got lots of compliments.  So, I just had to add it! 

It was a plain white tank top/undershirt that was now too short,
but otherwise, it still fit just fine.

Will try to make a tutorial soon 'cuz a friend of K's wants one too
and K has one more top to chop!

Lastly, while weeding our garden, we found some seriously large caterpillars.
So, the kids put them in a bug catcher, immediately they made chrysalises and today,
K noticed that they had hatched.

So they fought over who would hold them.