Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Pop Stars in Her Head

At bedtime tonight, my middle daughter said she received too many hugs and kisses today and that they gave her pop stars in her head. Hmmm....

More Vacation Pictures!

Homeschooling and Happy

We have been plugging away now for almost a week. It has been delightful. I must say I was most anxious about the two little ones, but they are doing great. I spend lots of time filling everyones love tanks with snuggles and love on the couch we put in the school room. They are learning to play well together, and await times when big sister can join.

I was surfing blogs when I saw a tradition that one homeschool family does. They pack up backpacks, have a special breakfast out with daddy, then come home to meet the "teacher" We had a great time our first. was this less than two weeks ago?

Too funny!

I'm working on downloading my pictures from vacation. I snapped this picture on accident. I was trying to get a picture of Lake on Jason's shoulder's. This happened so quickly I didn't realize that this was the picture I had taken. We have all done it. I giggle every time I see it. FYI, it was dry.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pharaoh and Discipline

Reading through the plagues, I see how the Lord was very clear about what would come upon the Egyptians. He gave a clear request and a clear warning. With every plague, Moses asked of Pharaoh to change his heart and mind towards the Lord's people.

I think it should be the same with our discipline with our children. When we notice a sin our child is struggling with, I believe we must first point it out and lay out the consequences for future offenses of that sin. I do not think discipline should come as a surprise to our children. I have seen parents confused and surprised by the sin of their children. Often, the discipline in these moments comes out of embarrassment and frustration. That rarely will affect much in the heart of the child other than distance.

Jeremiah 17:9
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?

In light of this verse, and many others, we should not look to the sin of our little ones with embarrassment or surprise. Being prepared and loving, we can offer a clear warning and clear consequence. Even one of my small children understood this well before 2. May you be kind and loving in your discipline this day!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Charles H. Spurgeon, Morning by Morning

Gracious souls are never perfectly at ease except they are in a state of nearness to Christ; for when they are away from him they lose their peace. The nearer to him, the nearer to the perfect calm of heaven; the nearer to him, the fuller the heart is, not only of peace, but of life, and vigor, and joy, for these all depend on constant intercourse with Jesus. What the sun is to the day, what the moon is to the night, what the dew is to the flower, such is Jesus Christ to us. What bread is to the hungry, clothing to the naked, the shadow of a great rock to the traveler in a weary land, such is Jesus Christ to us; and, therefore, if we are not consciously one with him, little marvel if our spirit cries in the words of the Song, "I charge you, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, if ye find my beloved, tell him that I am sick of love."

Just what I needed to hear today! Good morning friends.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Getting Caught

Exodus 2:12
He looked this way and that, and seeing no one, he struck down the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.

I love this verse. Don't we all do a little of looking this way and that when we are about to sin? We look around to see who is watching us before we share choice words we really shouldn't choose. That looking... should be our first flag to stop what it is we are sneaking to do.

Yesterday, when going to the playground at our house, one of my children grabbed a toy off the counter I had taken away from another child. I had allowed two of them to go a few minutes ahead of me onto the playground while I changed a diaper. Well, when the toy was spotted from the child I had taken it from...well you get the point. Because, that really wasn't the point.

When I asked about the toy, the answer was, "I don't really remember." Another child quickly said, "they brought it out behind their back." The sinner then said, "Maybe she is right, but I don't remember."

It was such a great opportunity for growth for my child. I discussed how it wasn't the toy that was the offense but the lie and being sneaky. I shared my own moments of being sneaky that resulted in me choosing sin. It was one of those moments in parenting where you realize the Lord is reaching the heart of the child.

Later, my daughter told my friend she had a tough day with sin. I thank God for my friend and her honesty. She said, "I know what you mean, today I said things I should not have, I thought things I should not have, and I did things I should not do." "Have you found the forgiveness you need?" Yes, was the answer from my child. I felt so very proud of the redemption that is happening in the heart of my child.

We also talked about how much the Lord loves us, that He would care enough to catch us in our sin! That He brings people in our lives and conviction in our hearts to break us of our sin, and draws us nearer to Himself. I hope you get found out in your sin today! May His grace lead you home. It is a prayer of my heart that my kid's sin is found out. And that they are gently led to the truth of God's grace and forgiveness to the point that they want more of Him and less of themselves.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Making the Right Choice

Exodus 1:17
But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live.

This morning I have started my morning reading in Exodus. Our church is studying this book on Sunday night, and it has been a long time since I have read Exodus. This entire first chapter really struck me this morning. Check out the story of the midwives. I would love to hear your thoughts.

What really struck me was the lie they told to the king when he asked why they weren't doing as they commanded. They told the king the Hebrew women are vigorous and give birth before the midwife arrives. The above noted scripture points out that they feared God, and spared the lives of the baby boys.

Exodus 1:20
So God dealt with the midwives. And the people multiplied and grew very strong. And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families.

Wow, is that amazing? They did what they knew the Lord required and they were blessed. Not what was popular or would bring notice and reward from the king....they did what was right. Even at the expense of a lie. And the blessing that was given. Children. Amazing!!

I need some time to wrap my mind around this. I will certainly be thinking about those amazing midwives while I clean this morning. I'm also going to think about how our reward from the Lord, is children. Or blessing, gift, whatever you choose. They are from the Lord. Am I willing this morning to be unpopular for what is right? True? And do I fear the Lord? Not in a way that means afraid, but in a way that causes me to want His holiness in my life. I pray I do.

Lastly, do I see injustice? I had a college student here last week and we always watch nerdy movies together that nobody wants to see with us. This past week we watched a movie about the life of Nelson Mandela. It may not have been the best acting, but the story was unbelievable. When it was over I asked Heather if she ever feared that a major injustice was happening that we hadn't even noticed. We discussed current day injustices.

Have you ever wondered what you would have done during the time of Jesus, or slavery and segregation in our country? I know my own depravity, and though I hope I would have been counted among His followers, I fear I would have been there saying crucify....Only by His grace am I able to have had my heart changed to become His daughter. I was a child he would have sent a midwife for (I know, it was only for the boys, the girls were spared)....Nonetheless, I don't deserve such grace.

What if you were a midwife asked to do unthinkable acts to the Lords children? Thank goodness it was His grace that led them. We must realize it was the Lord that protected those children and gave the conviction of heart and grace and courage to the midwives. It was the Lord who knew that it was Moses soon come into the world. He knows His children, and His plan for them will always come to pass. It is certainly something to think about today.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Lake Update

Lake and I headed for Asheville this morning to have his hearing checked. He was so sweet. It is rare for him and I to have time alone. He is such a special heart. I think part of my worry over his speech comes from my eagerness to hear what he has to say. That said, I may be missing all that he "is" saying without words. He is sweet meat, and I make many meals from him every day. Could you just chew on those cheeks?

Well, his hearing is normal. We are now headed to speech therapy. Oh blah dee, oh blah da, life goes on! It is such a privilege to shepard these sweet hearts, isn't it? What do you love about being a mom (or dad) today? Today, I love I'm the one my kids come running to, to give a hug and a silly story. And diaper bottoms, and ouchies that really aren't there, but just a ploy to get some love. And love I have! Thank you Jesus for little ones! I am rich because of these children.

Sunday, August 17, 2008


It is so good to be home. I'm hitting the ground running. I'm taking the girls of our youth group to a theme park tomorrow and starting school on Thursday.

I came home to hear one of the best sermons I've heard in a long time from Joey Stewart Executive Director of Reformed Youth Movement. It was amazing. It's as if I haven't really absorbed it all yet. I need the CD so I can chew on it for a few days. It was really what I needed; I have been so very discouraged lately. I have stopped taking communion and feel really distant and discouraged lately. This morning was just the reminder I needed. I truly do not live in the richness of being a child of God.

If we didn't think we could do it all, then why do we fill our days so full?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Vacation for our family doesn't come all too often. When we do vacation, we do it with family. Well, we go to the homes of our family members. Currently we are at the home of my parents in Florida. Earlier this year we vacationed with my in-laws in Charleston. So, we are fortunate to have family in fun places.

The funny thing about being an adult with your parents....Is well, I'm an adult now, but more than that, the older you get the more you see your parents differently. Jason and I have always made it our goal to help each other love and honor our parents in all that we do. We both have had some strain in our relationships with our parents, but with the encouragement from Jason...I can say my relationship is better with my parents than it has ever been. I do believe he would say the same about his family. We have reached a point where we can all laugh about the many quirks we all bring to our family. I love to see my parents playing with my children.

My 5 favorite things about vacation!!
1. Jason, all day every day!
2. Naps
3. Sun and Fun
4. Smiles on the faces of my children
5. Endless Olympics! And little people documentaries! I am fascinated by little people!

My 5 least favorite things about vacation...
1. 13 hour drive
2. Noseeum (little bugs that torture me)...and not Jason.(he's too hairy for the bugs to reach him)
3. Poopy swim diapers....nuf said!
4. Lake learning to escape the pac and play
5. Benadryl hangover (from all the bug bites)

In the back of my mind, I keep thinking about Ella and I getting started with our homeschool routine. I'm getting excited about getting home and getting started. I think I may even start the Tuesday we get home.

I miss writing. I'm excited to get home for my writing as well!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


My sister and I talk about how hard it is when our favorite bloggers go on vacation or slow down posting. Between Angela and I we have 8 kids. (I like to add her 5 to mine, to make me sound more official). Well, as a mom, breaks don't come often. But a 5 minute break can get you through a few new blog posts, right? I have my favorites I check through regularly. I do feel like a blog stalker, but I figured it out today. Blogs are like getting a new magazine in the mail. They are something I look forward to, but know I don't have to make a long commitment of time. Oh, and forget about the pictures that show pretties!

So, my faithful reader. I'm sorry. I'm going on vacation. I need a break from blog stalking. I need to play, get a tan, have a cold drink, and love on my hubby. Hopefully the poison ivy won't keep me from all the reindeer games this week. Blessings to you, may a basket of pepperoni find it's way to your doorstep while I'm gone. And your husband stop shingling his head!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

This is one of my most favorite books of all time. I can't say enough about this book. Yesterday I took some time to read it again to my girls. At the end, my second born said, "that's so sad." She couldn't explain why in words, but her heart was heavy. When I asked her if she wanted her life to be like the boy or the tree. She had no words, but I could tell she was thinking. It certainly is a book to make you thoughtful.

My first born said, "Mommy, I want to be the tree." She is the tree...and the boy. Do you know this book? Which are you? The tree or the boy? I want to be the tree, but often, I'm the boy.

Party like you mean it!

Is it just me... Or is it exhausting to take kids to birthday parties? I love to see my kids have fun, and I'm so grateful that my friends are realistic about having parties that aren't over the top. But they wear me out. I guess it can't always be about me. Why don't my kids like drink coffee, read a book, eat a nice meal birthday parties?

Maybe next year......

Monday, August 4, 2008

Hidden Mom Fears

Remember when you brought your first baby home? Remember the constant checking...just to make sure they were still breathing? I worried over every bite and felt certain that everything in site was a choking hazard. I couldn't understand how I could be trusted to take care of this little life.

Three children later, the voices of worry have quieted but certainly not silenced themselves. My sweet face #3 has caused me some sleepless nights. Today I am going back to the doctor with him as I fear he has another ear infection. He never shows any typical signs of ear infection...high fever, pulling at ear, tearfulness. No, all I ever get from him is waking up a few times in the night. Well, we had another night like that last night. But what worries me most is that he's not talking.

I know we aren't supposed to compare, but my girls were such chatter boxes by his age. I know he understands what I'm saying because he can perform several tasks I ask him to do, but he won't talk. He simply grunts and smiles. What has me the most worried is that he has stopped saying the few words he did say last month. So, my mom worry is at it's peak. I'm hoping for a referral to an ENT today..... I'm selfish, I want to hear what his sweet voice has to say, and I want him to tell me when he's in pain. I'm even more selfish, I don't want to worry.

So, here is my last question to myself. What do I really believe? Do I believe the promises of the Lord. When I was pregnant with Lake a woman in our church came up to me and said she hoped not for a boy or a girl for me, but for a healthy baby. I remember saying to her, even unhealthy, so long as we are dependant on the grace of the Lord would be fine with us. Did I mean it? She is a woman who has cared for her daughter for more than 40 years with epilepsy she contracted from a vaccine. Have you ever met someone so refined by suffering that you almost feel jealous of the grace and love that they understand in ways you never will? This woman has a softness that I desire in my own life, but do I really?

So, do I avoid trials? Certainly. Do I want more of the Lord? Yes. Is worry a sin.....? Well, I'm still in process. He isn't finished with me yet.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

A New Low

Okay, so I was warned by my sister Angela that blog land would be addictive, but I truly didn't understand. We have had a particularly boring weekend other than some of our favorite college students coming over to play speed Uno with us.

I had nothing to read so I went to the library to get a new book, only to find the Nick Hornby book I picked to be terrible. His writing is great, but I can't stand the characters, not normally the case with his books. He does self-loathing and cynical better than most any author I know. I believe the book is A Long Way Down, and all the characters are trying to commit suicide. No thank you. I just can't do it, I don't care how well you write.

Now I'm making couscous that no true Southerner would try, but I'm taking it to the church picnic anyway. I should put a big hunk of fat back in it to appeal to the die hards around here.

No matter, my new low, I've become a blog stalker. I didn't know I had it in me. I realized it when I was mad at a particular author for keeping a cicada on his blog for something like...three days! The Money Saving Mom has gone on vacation, Sassy Pants is at a funeral (I'm praying friend) she certainly has a reason for a break, and the Half Pint house is too busy right now. Fishmama has been faithful. Totally pregnant with #6 and she posts about three times a day. You're my hero.

So, I was pleased this morning when my above mentioned favorites got back in the game. Read here a new favorite of mine. Second Drafts. To me, this is his best writing yet.

And my new favorite thing to surf, jump, I don't know. Go from one persons favorites to another until I have no idea who I'm reading. I need a new hobby?! Any ideas?

Thanks Angela, I love to share my addictive personality with you!

Friday, August 1, 2008

First Sleepover

Okay, Jason and I took the big step last night. We let Ella, our oldest, go to her first sleepover. She has slept with friends of ours and family, but never for a "sleepover" with other girls. I must say, I think I was a big girl about it, but I was definitely a bit over board on checking on her.

I remember when I was a girl wanting a really cool sleeping bag like all the other girls. My parents have never been camping in their life. So a sleeping bag was not a priority in my family. So I was the girl with a pillow case full of a huge quilt, pillow and t-shirt for sleeping. But I remember wanting a sleeping bag.

So, when Ella asked me to get her a cute sleeping bag I understood. She still had some birthday money from my mom, so I looked. Funny, my mom bought the sleeping bag. It was hard to buy it. Jason and I used to be backpack guides, and our attic is full of sleeping bags, but certainly not in the cool, girl brands they have these days. And ours are for sub-zero degrees in the mountains. Definitely not an issue here.

Well, they had princess, pink camo, and Hannah Montana. I called Jason, and he didn't even want her to have the last choice (another day, another blog). I knew she would pick the pink bag. She did. It surprised Jason. He asked her why she wanted that one. She said, "dad I like Hannah Montana, but I'm not ALL about her like the other girls are." So cute. Our 3 year old proceeded to say she would have picked Hannah. No matter, my girl is growing up.

So I'll confess. I went over to the house at 10 last night to make sure she was okay. I talked to the mom and the Holy Spirit. Before we left that afternoon I told Ella I would be praying, and if my heart was uneasy we would go home. She agreed. Well, when I walked in, I was instantly transported to some of the best parts of my childhood. Ella, with a bowl of popcorn, was surrounded by a group of sweet girls in jammies. She gave me a huge smile and asked me if I wanted to share her popcorn. The little girls mom was super sweet, and understood my angst about her first sleepover.

I just remember the catty nights at some sleepovers that were filled with fights. This was not the case. She was in for the time of her life. When she was in the car this morning I asked her who fell asleep first. She said she didn't know....hee, hee, it must have been her. She's my sleeper. The best thing today, she's been sweet. Not tired and grumpy like I expected. She said she wants a nap, but she has been kind around the house.

Ella is really such a blessing. She certainly has her moments. She is just as depraved and sinful as her mommy, but golly, I sure love how Jesus made her. I see why the Lord made her to be my oldest. Her kind heart is contagious. I won't be so afraid about the next sleepover, but I will always listen to the Lord and be sensitive to His guidance in these matters. I'm not afraid to say no if I need to.
A place to find encouragement to love your little ones, your husbands and those you come in contact with daily. Two does not have to be terrible. These are years to grow not simply get through!