Wednesday, February 29, 2012


so sick
pretty sure I have the flu
tons of homework and I'm speaking at a Ladies Conf. this Saturday. Abby has a volleyball tourney, and our big school auction is Saturday night.  Help me Jesus.

Good gravy!!  Dillon just came in and he has fever and little red dots all over his trunk and arms and back.  Chicken pox??  It is so rare in our parts now, thanks to vaccines, that I don't remember what they look like.

Update:  flu test positive, never been so sick in my life(temp 103), thankful for my sweet and supportive man.  I work tomorrow :(
Dillon has Fifths disease and is already better.  I'm praying hard that my kids don't get the flu, or Melody's sweet kiddos because I was with them Tuesday when it was all brewing.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

can't finsih what I start

Ugh, why am I so bad about finishing well?  I'm the most gung-ho and jump right in person when something really rings a bell with me.  Remember the coupons?  It lasted 7 weeks.  Here is what is left of my pitiful stockpile...

Remember the cash envelopes?  Pathetic...lasted 3 weeks.  It is just too hard when you have a debit card!!  Crikeys, I'm so lazy. 
My goal of running my first 10K this winter--not so much.  I'm good if I get in 3 two-mile jogs a week.
Honestly, the only reason I didn't quit my RN to BSN studies last summer was because of shame.  I'd written about it and everyone knows I'm in school.  I'd be so embarrased if I up and quit(only 3 five-week classes left PTL).
As for giving up Facebook for Lent, I've not been on there since Ash Wednesday.  For the record, I don't know what Ash Wednesday is.  I'm definitelfy a nontraditional, nondenominational, you can't tell me what to do unless Jesus tells me to do it kind of person.  But, I love the whole Lent season idea.  So, Facebook is gone for 40 days.  If you posted a fantastic statement on my wall, please text it to me. My mom is on a spending freeze for 40 days.  She read "7" too and is all into it.  she is only buying absolute necessities for 40 days.  Her dilemna the first day was deciding if shampoo is a necessity :)  My dad said Yes!
Now, as for my influence of "7" by Jen Hatmaker, the best book I've ever read, I'm hoping not to doom it to the wayside in 3 weeks too.  It speaks straight to my hippie, nonconformist, want to be a light for Jesus heart.  So, I'll let you know that I bought local, organic spinach at a farmer's market today. It is so pretty and dark and big, wrinkly leavaes--doesn't look at all like the packaged fresh spinach.  I'm hosting a mother/daughter spring clothing and accessories swap March 24.  Sure, the invitation I sent out has some preaching in it about how filthy rich most middle class America is compared to the 2 billion people on earth who survive on less than 2 dollars a day.  But, I think this will be a lot of fun and can teach us and our daughters about not buying more just because we can.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Pray these kiddos home

Please, whether you are "into" adoption or not, join me in praying for mountains to  move in South Korea.  For some reason, the govt has come to a standstill in the last year and is not processing immigration and travel papers for the children who've been matched with families to be adopted (Sidenote, no it isn't because lots of S. Koreans are starting to adopt the orphaned children in their homeland.  Their culture places great value on preserving blood lineage).  We are talking about families who accepted a referral over a year ago who have gotten nowhere!! Now, I'll tell ya, that is pure torture.  It is awful for the adoptive parents.  You may not believe me, but once you have a photo and have signed acceptance papers, you feel that child growing in your heart.  No matter the ocean that lies in between, you are bonded and need that baby home.  Besides the new family, think about how much harder this is going to be on the children.  Hudson was 21months when he came home.  It was a long and stressful first 6 months.  He grieved and was terrible to live with at times.  And, let's not forget the foster parents who've been caring for the children.  Back in the good old days of international adoption, we got travel clearance 3months or so after signing acceptance of a referral(and I barely survived that wait!).  The foster moms only cared for the children about 6 months.  Now, these selfless foster families are caring for children almost 2 years and then having their hearts wrenched out when the kids finally leave for their forever home.  Hudson's foster mom fell to pieces when we departed from Korea.  Please please pray and ask God, the Father to the fatherless, to pierce the hearts of Korean officials and get those kids to their waiting mommies and daddies.  My cyber friends need Daniel and David to come home!!
Thanks all.

Afterthought Addendum:  I forgot something.  I began fasting from desserts/sweets 2 weeks and 2 days ago, but who's counting?  I've never been a "faster".  There really is something awesome to the whole concept.  I LOVE sweets.  I eat chocolate at least once day--for my heart health.  But, my heart was burdened for so many big things to pray for.  Fasting from sweets gives me that perfect shot in the arm to keep praying.  I'll fill you in later, but the money for Carter's trip--miraculous!  So, I've added the babies waiting on travel clearance to my prays.  I see a yummy dessert, I want to taste it, but I want to see Jesus move mountains worse that I want the chocolate.

Monday, February 20, 2012

The book you must have, no ifs, ands, or buts...

Guys:  I'm absolutely head over heels with my new book "7 An experimental mutiny against excess."  Seriously, the author must have been living in my brain the last several years.  I made our family do an "Africa Day" 3 years ago.  We decorated with signs that Abby made.  We only ate rice and drank water the whole day(okay, we cheated that night--weenies we were!).  Only thing, Jen Hatmaker is hilarious!!!!  Page 34, when she describes her difficulties fasting from coffee for a month made me guffau out loud and cry.  Carter asked me what could be so funny in a book?  This is coming from the teen who would rather jab thorns in his eyeballs than read a book. A big shout out to Meredith, my blogworld friend, who told me about this book.  If any of you have or are reading it and are launching your own journey to excess reduction and Jesus increase, please email me or leave a comment.  I'd love to hear your testimony.
And, just to make you smile, and since it sort of relates to what I'm talking about in the fore-mentioned book, standing up for justice and speaking up for those who can't speak for themselves,
here is a sneak peak of the new foster angel that my sis and her hubby are giving a loving, warm, and fun home.  He is 2 months old and his birth story is a true disaster.  I wish I could show you his eyes.  Great big and full of life.  My dad received a prophetic word from God that this baby would overcome his beginnings and has a big life ahead of him.

Friday, February 17, 2012

finished the book--passing it on to you

Kisses From Katie, by Katie Davis

For those of you who haven't heard about her work, Katie Davis is a young(26 or 27yr old) woman from Brentwood, TN.  She grew up in a priveleged home and felt called to minister to orphans in Uganda as soon as she graduated from highschool.  Within the next 3 years, she adopted 14 little glorious girls who were orphaned, alone and hungry.  She started a school-sponsorship and feeding program that takes care of 400 children(please click on the Amazima "button" on the upper right corner of this blog to view the ministry AND support it).  She also operates an open-door policy providing medical care, food, and shelter to the tossed aside and neglected people in her village.  If you don't want to open your eyes to the individual realities of 143 million orphaned children in the world, then please don't read this true story. She describes 18 pound 3yr olds and a sibling group of 7 children, orphaned and living alone in a one-room shack.  However, I recommend it.  It is a delightful and thought-provoking read because it displays how powerful one person can be when he/she simply says "Yes" to what God asks and how God does miraculous things through that one person.  It isn't nearly as edgy as Radical by David Platt, but inspiring for certain!  I leave you with an excerpt.  She is describing when she first took in Sumini, a 5 year old sweet girl who was in terrible medical shape.  Remember, this happened when Katie was about 20 years old, when she could have been driving a cute convertible, wearing Miss Me  jeans on her college campus, tossing 5 bucks a day to support a coffe habit, living a self-absorbed life. 
But, instead, she chose to obey Jesus and is living life to the abundance, one child at a time(oooh, I want to be like her when I grow up someday!)

  "As I sat up late that night trying to keep her alive one minute, one breath at a time, I had to ask myself, Why do I have so mujch?  And why have I always had so much?  Why do my family and friends have so much?  And do they evenknow that far, far away from the luxuries of the wesern world, a little songbird of a girl is fighting for her life?  The roles could have so easily been reversed.  I wondered how God had chosen me to be born into such luxury when this little girl had been born into such hopelessness.  I thought, She is a girl with as many hopes and draems as those who rest peacefully in air-conditioned houses protected by alarm systems.  yet her body is on fire with raging fever, my sheets are soaked.  And right now, she has no one to care for her but me.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Day of Love-Valentines

Valentines Day is a weird day is it not?  I mean, how stupid is it that elementary children have Valentines Day parties?  I like the idea of reminders to express your love for people, but all the decorating, gifts, and cards...crazy.  I know what my deal is, I hate being told what to do!  When I was a kid, we had a book that my mother loved to death--  Mrs. Piggle Wiggle. Mrs. Piggle Wiggle helped parents straighten out kids who were, hmmm, shall we say struggling with some behavior issues?  Well, there was this one story about a stubborn young lady who would retort "I'll do it because I WANT to NOT because you tell me too."  For some reason, my parents found this story to be hilarious and comforting.  It seems I resembled that child.  Go figure.  Anyway, I still have that same streak.  I hate that mass marketing  and peer pressure  rule the way we celebrate holidays:  think tacky inflatable Santas riding Harleys in people's yards, or having a party for 7 yr olds to pass out Valentines cards to children of the opposite sex.  So, to throw my family off  my Grinch path and hope that they grow up a little nicer than I am, I decorated our dining room(just a tiny bit) for Valentines Day.  I had a bunch of cut out hearts from a project years ago.  I strung them up above the windows.  Then, I wrote "This is why I love you" notes to the kids and put them at their place at our dining table.  Dinner was served on hot pink plates.  I really blew it out of the water--for me anyways ;)  Mike is much more sweet than I and surprised me with a handmade beaded necklace that a lady at the school makes.  It is so pretty!
Before you go thinking it was a heavenly day filled with harp music and love, let me finish.  Hudson started the day with a stomach virus.  He was so listless and quiet, I've never ever seen him still and not talking!  It was scary. When you meet your child for the first time at age 21months, you don't have any idea what they act like when they are sick. From the day we got him he's been a tornado of movement and noise.  Yesterday morning he just would lay on the floor, not saying a word.  Abby, the ever wise and sensitive one said "Well, you are going to have an easy day!"  Love that no-nonsense girl.  He did perk up at noon and wanted "chicken-fe" or Chick Fil A.  I made a classic mommy mistake and let him eat.  We then went into Ross for daddy some shirts.  BARF--all over my leg and the floor in the check out line.  Lovely.  Never fear, he was fine after that!  And, the real expression of love wasn't a Valentine gift, but a mommy's arms and loving caress while he was sick.
The evening ended with Mike and I watching Phantom of the Opera--which he gets to see on Broadway next week--hear me yell no fair!  Then, I finished my FEMA disaster training for my community health class.  So romantic.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Brothers, best buds

I sometimes think God placed Hudson in our family as a bonus gift for Dillon.  They are best buds and so funny! 

Their age difference actually makes no difference.  First word out of Hudson's mouth when he gets up is "Where Dillon?"  The first word out of Dillon's mouth when he gets off the bus each afternoon is "Where Hudson?" Dillon's future as an independent adult is uncertain.  I think Hudson will be his biggest fan and advocate.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

5th graders serve the homeless

On Monday, Abby's 5th grade class took a field trip away from the comfy, homogenous suburbs and went to "that side of town" in the city.  Run down, abandoned buildings, and  people wandering in the streets.  The type of neighborhood that you lock your car doors in.  We went to an amazing ministry that serves the homeless and neglected population.  The kids were divided in to 3 teams.  Abby and I were on the kitchen team.  We served breakfast, prepared lunch, cleaned the dining room, and then the kids served lunch. The kids were precious and worked so hard.  They had zero reservations about working and serving.  I was so proud!  In the chapel time, Abby got up front and gave her testimony.  She shocked me!  She is usually quiet and reserved.  Girl, she preached it!   She told them about how "Jesus died for our sins and resurrected from the dead."  Go girl. 

 Serving line for breakfast.  I can't show you pics of the "clients" because they told us that some are on the lamb and can't have their faces shown! 

Wow, someone actually has proof that I am at functions, not just the photographer.  Hey, check it, I'm wearing my darn cute Hello-Somebody watch...that supports a feeding program and I'm at an inner-city feeding program.  Cool beans :)

Here is Abby serving a tray to a client.  They get huge lunch portions because the ministry doesn't serve dinner.  So, the clients have to eat a huge lunch to last until the next mornings breakfast. 
Now, you've seen an 11yr old serve...get out and stretch yourself.  You'll be glad you did. 
On that last note, I decided that for my workshop on March 3, I'm teaching about how to live an "outward focused life."  The title is "Me, myself, and I.  Train yourself, and your children, to live with an others focus in a self obsessed world."  Come join me , if you live near me.  Pray for me to speak the words the Lord wants me to say...I'm not a really gifted speaker.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

He's 16!

Carter's bday was Thursday.  I'd been fairly dreading it.  You know, it isn't easy to see your firstborn turn 16.  That is BIG.  We had a balloon and 2 gifts on the table waiting for him that morning.  He opened 1 before school--an Academy gift card.  He isn't getting a big expensive bday from us because we are raising money for his mission trip to South Africa(and God is multiplying our efforts quickly!) --he leaves in 1month and 4 days.  Abby's love language is gift-giving.  She bought one of those long lanyards the boys wear in their pocket with their keys.  It is a Miami Dolphin one(very cool).  She couldn't wait for him to have it and gave it to him several days early.  After school I took him to the Department of Safety to apply for his license.  In our area, you must go on your bday and do the paperwork and photo.  Then, you make an appointment to come take the actual driving test about 6 days later. must have the "green sheet" that shows you took driver's ed.  We haven't a clue where this paper is.  I'll get a replacement one tomorrow and try again.  We had a very nice dinner Thursday night with Mike's side of the family, complete with Grandma's homemade cherry pie.  He got lots of money for his trip, a few gift cards, and a car care bucket.  We had wrapped up the key to Mike's 98 Accord and gave it to him.  That was fun to see :)

Here he is with his Nana

 So, no license yet, but his car is waiting, complete with new Superman steering wheel cover.  Friday night he had friends spend the night and Saturday they played Air Soft wars at an old WW2 factory  in the city. Abby made him a strawberry cake.

  My side of the family is going to have a dinner for his bday next week.  We are stretching it out! My dad made this awesome card for Carter

Now, thoughts.  I handled the bday really well--not a tear.  Friday I was cleaning out my nightstand and came across old cards and letters.  There was a Mother's Day card signed by Mike and a scribble scratch that kind of said Carter.  That made me cry.  He's a great kid:  sensitive to other's feelings, kind, loves the Lord with all his heart, funny, and so talented at music. He is also a typical teen with mood swings, procrastinating on his school work, listening to loud music, and such antics.  All in all, Mike and I couldn't be prouder.  Sixteen years ago, when we slid through the worst ice storm in a decade to get to the hospital, we had no idea what this parenting adventure entailed.  We thought we knew it all!  Now, we realize that we constantly learn and readjust our ideals and dreams.  We pray that God will receive glory through our children's lives.  We also have come to realize that we don't get our sense of worth through our kids(you all know those parents who live through their children and need some of their own life).  Our children are first and foremost God's children.  We have them a short time to nurture, influence, teach, love, and steer up to become flaming arrows in God's arsenal--to shoot at the enemy of this world.  Carter, my only red-head son, you are a joy.  You make me sing and smile.  I wish I had chilled out when you were little and held you more, nursed you longer, let you sit longer with me in the "big blue chair" and hold your blanket with the silk edges that Aunt Emily made you while watching Barney.  I see God shaping you in to a mighty man of valor.  Your talents and passions will lead many people someday.  We love you more than life.
---momma and dad

Friday, February 3, 2012

not feeling it yet

Yes, Carter turned 16 yesterday!  No, I don't have a great--or just plain regular--blog post to put up.  I just haven't felt it kick in yet.  Blogs, smogs, hogs,  just not feeling it.
It is coming though, along with many others swirling in this 90 to nothin' mind of mine.  Many words and thoughts are coming....