Friday, October 15, 2010

A Day In THE Life

A lovely Autumn day it was. Tonight I sit nursing one daughter while sitting with my two other daughters, willing them to just settle down and sleep, I touch my Gracie's head and begin to think about how blessed I am. The thought overwhelms me for a moment. God has given me so much.

I have four beautiful, healthy children who think I'm pretty wonderful. That in itself is beyond measure - wonderful.

I'm so blessed. Blessed with a boy who is learning new things he's really good at and finding the joy in that accomplishment.
Blessed with kids who love eachother and glow in the Autumn air. What fun to watch them find pleasure in rolling around in the grass finding cloud-creatures in the sky.
Blessed with a daughter who very seriously wants me to have a flower she picked.
Blessed with little pink sweeties to pack and kids who love taking pictures with my digital (thankfully) camera.
And though I am really weary and my brain doesn't seem to be able to convey my thoughts very well tonight, I think you get the general idea. :) This is my life and this is the only life I want. Yahweh help me rejoice in every moment and enjoy it abundantly. I pray your day is full of blessings and love too. Happy Autumn.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Stuck On The Rock

Do you ever feel as though you were sailing along fine in the Sea of God, when all the sudden you realize you aren't actually going anywhere anymore, and in fact your 'boat' is actually stuck atop a rock? Yep.

I have felt this way for some time. Could it be since I was married, or started having children? It could be. The very intimate places of my heart where I go with the Lord are getting a little crowded with the other loves of my life.

Before I got married, I wondered and even asked other married women whom I knew had a close relationship with Yeshua (Jesus); how do I share my heart? How do I love a man whole-heartedly and love my Heavenly Husband with "all my heart, mind, soul and strength"? They responded essentially the same way - 'marriage makes you closer to the Lord'. Well, we'll have been married seven years this month (and more in love now) but being brutally honest here, I feel far more distant now then I did before I married.

Hmmm, or is it just different?

When I got engaged, I remember writing a new song to the Lord directly responding to the joy and thrill I felt in my heart of being 'spoken for', because I could so more clearly feel that connection between how the the Lord felt about me and I about him because of the physical joy and love I felt towards my Jason. It was and is a wonderful, wonderful experience that I treasure.

Now seven years of blissful marriage and four beautiful kids later, instead of going to the piano and playing my heart out to Him in prayer and intimate love and worship and hearing Him sing and speak to me in response, I find my heart screeming prayers for help throughout the day as I try to take deep breaths to calm my nerves and needing His help and wisdom to just get through the day without reacting in anger or impatience to my children. Which to me, sounds just terrible. I hate feeling that way; out of control and angry, but it is there. It's in my heart. It's my struggle. It's not ALL the time, but it is often.

So, does this mean that I have lost all the treasures He gave me in my life before I had children? Does it mean I no longer have Him in me, or using me, or ministering through me? Well, I certainly don't think I am producing the fruit that I should be if I were really spending the time in His presence as I should be. I am quite certain that the reason I am struggling with anger and lack of self-control and patience is because my heart is not fully residing within the intimate place of His presence on a daily basis. But, if my heart didn't belong to Him then I don't think it would cry out to Him in those moments when I feel myself slipping.

And when I finally get to lay my head down on my pillow at night and close my eyes, my mind and heart wouldn't go directly to the place of "Oh Yahweh, I need You. I NEED You to direct this family, my heart, my mind and our every moment."

YES, when I do get a moment and I choose to go to Him in that moment, He's there. He's there just like that big, huge rock in the picture above - holding me in place so I don't end up in a heap of rubble on the shoreline in the middle of my every day. He holds me tight and secure and loves me.

He alone is my rock and my salvation;
he is my fortress, I will never be shaken. Psalm 62:2

Yahweh does not so easily give up. He does not love me because I am a perfect mother, wife or woman. He does not stop giving, because I have stopped giving. He certainly has every right to, but He chooses to be resplendantly life-giving and unconditionally loving!

And you know what? I get to respond. And though I would LOVE to respond by locking myself in a dark room with a grand piano and pour out love song after love song, I respond with a simple 'thank you, My King' and go to sleep... or continue with the next thing on my list, or go change a poopy diaper, or get a hug from my husband (my favorite).

The people surrounding my heart in the everyday, present world, are the gifts that the Lord has given me and I get to [try my best] to love them like He has shown me to love - He does it SO well.

Be encouraged, be rock-solid secure in the love that Yahweh has for you, and just keep going. That's the word to my own heart today. :)

He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. Deuteronomy 32:4

There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God. 1 Samuel 2:2

My God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior— from violent men you save me. 2 Samuel 22:3

and so many more....

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Merciful Mercy

So, I don't know HOW ON EARTH some people can write blog posts when they have little kids. Obviously, I am not one of those peeps! However, I endeavor to try harder to post more often, even if just little rushed tidbits of poor grammar. Be excited.

Anyway - the important stuff:

Mercy Alisa Ward was born July 22, 2010 about 9:20 in the morning. Weighing in at 8 lbs, 3 ozs and 21 inches long. She is delicious. :)

For those of you who like birth stories and want to hear mine - I will give you the nutshell-ish version: I started having contractions the night before around 5:00 pm, which to Jason and I meant nothing really, because my previous children came days after I started contractions. So we were pretty nonchalant about it.

The contractions were ten minutes apart and not very long - all night long, though they were getting pretty uncomfortable as the morning came. Around 6:00 am they started to get longer and harder, so we thought maybe baby is coming today.

I stayed in bed another hour or so and the contractions began to be about seven minutes apart, sixty seconds long and pretty hard. Around 8:00 am we thought maybe we might want to go in to the hospital after all. So we called our sister to come up to watch the kids and I decided to take a shower - well, goooodness, the contractions just switched in the shower, they were coming one on top of the other, I yelled for Jason, as I was beginning to think I was gonna have the baby in the shower. So we put it in high, crazy, "I don't wanna have the baby at home" gear (not that I am against that by any means, but that would mean I wouldn't get to lay in the hospital, have food brought to me on a tray to my bed and little Mercy lay beside me with no interruptions other than, "can I get you anything, Dear?" for about 4 days), got the kids headed to the van when my sister pulled up, so we high-tailed it to town - usually a 25-30 minute drive to the hospital.

I have no idea how long it took us, but I am quite certain Jason drove a touch like a maniac. Not the most comfortable trip to town I've ever had that's for sure, contractions were pretty hard at this point, although, when you are hanging on for dear life, the focus is somewhat dispersed.

Thankfully, Jason had called ahead and the hospital staff had everything ready. My doctor happened to be in the hospital so they paged her when we arrived. Almost immediately after getting into the hospital bed I felt like pushing. The nurse was telling me to try to wait until the doctor came (oh God) when as the next contraction came, my doctor strolled into the room, I started pushing - three pushes later, here was our girl.

We were in the hospital a total of eleven minutes before she came.

Holding my sweetie, I said "That's the way to have a baby! Thank You Lord". I think declaring her name all throughout the pregnancy made for a merciful delivery. :)

She is sooooo precious and addictive. She smiles now, and she smiles with every fiber in her being, time stands still for that moment and my heart is filled to overflowing with pure joy.

What did we ever do without our kids? (besides sleep).

Thanks to all of you who prayed for us and the delivery!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Yes, I Am Still Alive

Still alive and a baby's kickin'.

So much for thinking I was a true-blue Blogger, for I cannot seem to write a blog I feel is 'worthy' of reading but every two months or so. Sorry about that - if you care! :)

I thought I would just post this video because I am in my last days of being pregnant, any day NOW... and for those of you who missed it on FB, I thought you would enjoy the sweetness of my Gracie. As well as the size of my pod. :)

Hope your summer is full of precious memories and goodness. The next blog will have new baby pictures!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Pregnancy and It's Many Wonders

Pregnancy. What a gift. What a miracle. What an amazing, overwhelming, awe-inspiring privilege. It is truly a fulfillment of my destiny.
However, sometimes, in order to fulfill a destiny, a calling, and a dream, one must experience many pains, climb obstacles and discover many discomforts. I would like to take this opportunity to vent verbalize some of these challenges.

First, there is the wonder and amazement I feel when I find out I'm pregnant, which then leads to the "Oh dear Lord, are you sure this is a good idea?!" - having one, two, or in this case, three other children all five years old and under. As well as feeling the "didn't I just have a baby?" feeling and my body having not quite returned to the pre-baby-machine state.

Second, there is the abhorrence of all things healthy and nutritious - in fact, pretty much all food other than french fries, bread or chocolate are quite a disturbing thought. Along with this feeling is of coarse the nausea that is all consuming MOST of the day. This usually lasts about 40-50 days.
My family is *overjoyed* at this new found attitude that comes with my nauseated, unhealthy, gagging nature.

Third, the emotional roller-coaster that ensues is exactly that. One moment I am fine and dandy, the next moment I am weeping into my ginger and lemon tea, the next moment I am laughing to tears for no apparent reason. *sigh* It can be very exhausting! Here again, the family stare at me in utter perplexity... Jason is now quite familiar with these perplexities that come from his pregnant wife, and usually takes full advantage by telling me his best any jokes, because at this point everything is gut wrenching hilarious. I have a LOT of laughing fits when I am pregnant.

Fourth, after the loss of around six pounds from the first trimester's nausea, I then commence in packing on carb, sugar, and fat-laden pounds because my will-power at this point is completely... MIA.

Fifth, the result then of number four, is the revelation and then fulfillment that I probably am not going to enjoy wearing the terrible, terrible maternity pants that I have worn now for three other pregnancies. My thighs and posterior seem to be growing at a faster and more thorough rate than my uterus. In fact, I now must deal with self-loathing because of my lack of self-control, along with the loathing of my maternity clothing. Why, oh why, are maternity pants so ridiculous: I usually end up mooning my husband when I try to get out of the van because they have slipped so far down, therefore I must hike them up in their proper place when I step out of the vehicle - hoping there are no innocent bystanders beholding this process. But this happens not just when I get out of the van, but when I bend over, when I sit, when I walk... Hike'em up, hike 'em up. I could go on on the subject of maternity wear, but I shall not.

Sixth, three words: round ligament pain. I don't know of any other women who complain of this, so perhaps I am just "special", but I have terrible ligament/groin/pelvis pain - this pregnancy is the worst I have experienced. Rolling over in bed takes me at least a minute as I have to do it slowly and figure out how to lift one side up in order for the other side to roll without experiencing further pain...? or something. Getting OUT of bed, ha! well, picture a very old woman with acute hip and back pain struggling to get out of her chair - that's what I look like. The running joke between my husband and I is that "this old grey mare, ain't what she used to be". And just to help you with the picture, my son has dramatically depicted me in the following video. The sad part: it's rather an accurate portrayal.

Seventh, constant blood tests, or as I like to call myself, the human pin-cushion.

Eighth, Varicose veins in some of the most inappropriate of places.

Ninth, thinking you are thin enough to pass through a certain pathway, only to get lodged between said pathway.

Tenth, all my maternity shirts have stains of some kind on the most potruding part of my tummy - said tummy seems to find itself where I least expect it (mixing bowls, counter tops, my plate, my kids' messy faces, etc.).

Eleventh, being unable to put any type of clothing on the lower half of my body without having to sit down, hold onto something or deciding to just forget certain article.

Twelfth (I actually had to look up the spelling on this - how appropriate), my brain seems to have decided to take a leisurely vacation. I find myself forgetting the most obvious of details, words and jumbling my sentences. And I will add clumsiness to this one, because it seems to be linked to the absence of brain-power.

Perhaps, I should stop there. We all have our own stories, aches and pains and some of the people reading this have far worse ones than mine are.
Hopefully I have not offended anyone with this blog post, but actually made you smile, if not chuckle, because I really just needed to vent and you being my "girlfriends" at this season of my life get to hear/read it.

And surely you know, I would do it (become pregnant) over and over again (oh wait, I have!), for the rewards of pregnancy far outweigh the challenges. Nor do I want to convey that I am taking this privilege for granted in any way.

Oh, and just so you know and aren't thinking I am a horrid mother - I do eat healthy, nutritious foods when I am pregnant!! I just don't want to. :)

Blessing, hugs, and thanks for reading,

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Tribute To My Man

The Man of My Dreams turned forty this week. He didn't want any big parties. We spent our money on a washer and dryer (greatly needed and appreciated by your's truly) and other home improvements (he is trying so hard to get our basement finished) instead of presents.

He wanted to do something with his "wifey" for his birthday, instead of 'the guys' *me grinning big*. We were given a night-stay away in a lovely hotel, in a little town, that was much more my style than his (forgot my camera). We had a peacefully blissful time though.

He received and loved home-made cards from his little one's and a goofy one from me -which he laughed at.
We even wrote a song for his big day - which I tried and tried to get my kids to sing and make cute video for him - here's one of our 'takes'... he laughed and enjoyed our endeavors anyway. :)

I tried making a spectacular birthday [ice cream] cake - I always end up trying to do spectacular things that usually result in spectacular stress on my part, why do I do this? - but the cake was tasty, even though it sat too long and when we cut into it the ice cream sort of squished out, which resulted in a pile of cake, rather then a piece of cake. *sigh*

Forty years is rather monumental isn't it? As the Good Wife, am I not supposed to arrange every little detail to make it a monumental occasion? Well, if so, I failed. But you know, he didn't seem to mind and appreciated every little thing we did do.

Why am I telling you all of this (I know he's gonna wonder, when he reads it)? Well, because I want the world to know my Hunny is simply the best...better than all the rest... (sing it with me now). Well, he is better than all the rest where I am concerned.

Whatever he does, he does for us; his family. He loves us with all his heart and it shows in so many ways - in our children's faces that shine and perk up when they hear the van coming home from work each day, the crawling all over him when they play on the floor with their Papa and the laughing and giggling that ensues whenever he's around.

It shows in the tender way he loves me, honors me and appreciates me; I feel secure, loved, pretty and favored.

It shows in the devoted way he cares for his parents and siblings - longing to do more for them, but not always able to do all he'd like to do.

It shows in the way he asks the Father for direction in the decision he needs to make.

It shows in the way he works so strenuously to "bring home the [turkey] bacon" (since we don't eat pork) and provide for all our needs plus, plus, plus so many 'perks'.

I love how he is such a manly-man, yet has the tenderest of heart's that brims with mercy so often... with the exception of his hockey team doing poorly... then we "take cover"!!

Without getting too sappy and sounding like a Shania Twain song (it's too late, I know), Hunny - I love every moment I have with you and I look forward to the forty years + that we get to be together. You truly are the Man of My Dreams. Thank You Lord for such a gift.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Lonely Hearted Me

I don't know if I was born shy, but I certainly developed into that stereotype. As a child I remember clinging to my parents legs whenever we went to a social function.
Little girl alone, afraid, hiding, feeling sad photo
I remember trying to come up with any kind of excuse that would keep me in the truck as long as possible when we arrived at family reunions (oooh those were the worst, for some reason!).

I recall that terrifying feeling of having to be on a 'team' game of any kind - because that would mean my team was watching me perform and I was always self-conscious about everything so I would always do badly.

I remember hoping people would do the talking for me, so I wouldn't have to. I would hold back tears whenever I was put on the spot in front of people - just to answer a simple question - because I was so embarrassed to speak.

Still to this day, I feel my face fill with heat when I am put on the spot, am posed a question or tell a story - with everyone, not just strangers.

The inner-turmoil of an intimidated person is very frustrating. You feel like such a loser - you have no confidence in yourself, therefore you feel as though whatever you say will be the wrong thing and fear whatever you do will be seen as insignificant or wrong.

Then, as you get older, shyness is portrayed to most people as being "stuck-up" or haughty. Which is actually as far from the truth as you could get!

Being [this] shy is such a lonely place.

I am sure that homeschooling didn't help this predicament of mine, but in a lot of ways, it was my salvation. Yes, my social skills were completely lacking, I couldn't start a conversation with a stranger to save my life! (Still terrible at it!) But I am certain, had I gone to public school, I would have been the 'follower', the kid that changes into whatever person they need to be in order to receive the affirmation and acceptance of their peers. And boy, that is a scary thought.

Instead, my loneliness's and intimidation's led me to a very close relationship with my parents and a friendship/relationship with Yahshua (Jesus). I remember being around 15 or 16 years old, laying face down on my floor in my bedroom, crying out to the Lord to be my friend. I told Him He could have my hurting, lonely heart and cried out for Him to replace this overwhelming sorrow that made me feel so inadequate, stupid and unwanted.

When I got up off that floor, I felt different. I felt loved and I had an assuring peace, that it didn't really matter if I had any friends or not, I had Him. He was constant, He was true and He wanted me more than any other human being.

There really isn't any experience that I would exchange in lieu of that experience. I can say with all confidence that I am thankful for the lonely years of my childhood. I am so grateful for the relationship I have with my parents because of those years. They are the golden string that I held onto and which led me along in my path of life, along with my Friend - that sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24)

With every heart-aching experience I had throughout my life; the rejection of people, guy's I liked, leaders who let me down, friends and family, etc., I always knew Who to go to. A friend of mine once said, "with Stephenie, all roads lead to Jesus". I love that. I want that to be my legacy. I want to live that way.

I laugh now at the thought of being physically lonely - for, as a wife and mother every moment is completely surrounded. In fact, I would like to use the bathroom without another little body in there with me sometimes!

But still, my heart aches for those girl-friend, kindred-spirit's that I am grateful I had in my single days. I still have those dear one's, but they are many thousands of miles away. I have a kindred spirit in my husband for which I am overwhelmingly thankful. But there is just something about that female "bosom-friend" that is unmatched.
There is a loneliness for the times of worship with people who love Yahweh as well.

So even in adulthood, surrounded by the sweetness of family and love, a heart can still be lonely for something or someone. Yet, I have an assurance that will never crumble and that is in the depths of my 'knower'; I have a Friend and He is able to fill the lonely places of my heart and life.

"To give them beauty for ashes, the oil of JOY for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness." Isaiah 61:3

If He can do it for me, he can do it for anyone.

Now, to unplug the intimidation stuff... but that is another post.


Thursday, March 4, 2010

And Ode to Spring, An "O Dear" to Winter.

Let the celebration begin - for it is March, which is almost Spring, which is such a warm & fuzzy, beautiful, welcome, comforting thought.

In the mornings, when I poke my head out of the french doors in our kitchen, I can hear birds singing that lovely morning melody of dawn. Birds that I haven't heard all winter are starting to return and thank the Lord for the coming of Spring.

It smells different too - must be the scent of dormant life waking up from it's winter's snooze. It smells fresh and earthy, different from the wet scent of frosty, old snow.

Perhaps that is why I have such an acute fondness for birds! They get to go south for the winter! My "inner-bird" seems to shut-down and daydream of sweet summer days and the thankful-song that resides in my soul gets plugged up with... snow.

Instead, my "inner-bear" begins foraging and baking and eating cinnamon rolls, cookies and whatever else is around the house in preparation for the hibernation season. Oh lovely, winter weight gain. uugh.

There is something to be said about being thankful in all seasons, isn't there? I mean, if all I did was moan about the woeful days of wintry darkness, I would certainly be such a crank to be around... all. winter. long.

Hmm... come to think of it, I don't recollect having anything good to say about winter this year. My husband and I were both commiserating about how we don't enjoy winter like we used to. We say this as we begin the 28 minute, multiple coat, boot, thermal layering process of our children, just so we can drive a 1/4 mile down the road for a visit with the folks.

I am not a fan of being cold. I do not find happiness in my extremities feeling as though they might fall off if I stay outside in this frigid cold a second longer than necessary.

Our road is less than lovely for travelling in the winter and we don't have four-wheel drive, so several times throughout the winter we park the van, all pile out and walk up our hill; Jason and I trying to keep the kids from sliding on the ice which would induce further winter-trauma.

Then there's the Cabin Fever. Stuck. Stuck in the house. Snowy-isolation breeds insanity, I say. We should have installed a room with padded walls for the kids to bounce themselves off of in these wintry-stuck-times, because I'm not sure how much longer the house will handle the abuse.

Stuck - so I can commiserate with myself about how I don't. like. winter. And how it's always cloudy... and how I haven't seen the sun for 357 hours...

Yep, I was a cranky, cranky winter girl.

Yep, I missed the mark. I missed the rejoicing in all things-bit, or blessing the Lord oh my SOUL-bit. I chose not to see the beauty in all the things God has given. Of being thankful in EVERYTHING.

Sure, I had my little moments of "*humph* the snow-covered-everything is kinda pretty". Once, I enjoyed watching the snow fall and that deep peace that comes with it - when it feels like the entire world is silent and calm. Yes, I had my moments, but not deep inside where the stuff that comes out of my soul was, well, pleasant.

*deep, sorry, sigh*

Do I think the Lord is mad at me for missing this mark? No, but I do think He is disappointed by my lack of praise and gratefulness. Sad with my not grasping His promises that say I can have abundant life, joy in all things and the power to overcome my own thoughts and irksome will.

From where I sit and write this post, I can look out the window and see the mountains with their greyish frosty tops and the snow that is still lingering under the trees on the hills and the sky that is full of clouds and the day that is grey and weary.
Well, that's one way of looking at it anyway... let's try again.
I look out the window...
I see a big, strong evergreen tree, too tall to see the top. It stands erect and beautiful in every season, with every drop of rain, flake of snow, torrent of wind or beating sun. It is a safe place for birds to rest, squirrels to frolic and the occasional bear to climb. Sometimes it drops an old branch or two, a few old needles and pine cones - shedding the old to make way for the new. And it's always pointing up, arms outstretched to receive what comes and arms outstretched as though thankful and praising it's creator.

I think I have a few things to learn yet (ha!), a few more ways to be thankful and a whole lot more praising from my soul to do.

But, goodness, am I glad Spring is coming.

Thou sendest forth Thy spirit, they are created; and Thou renewest the face of the earth

May the glory of the LORD endure for ever; let the LORD rejoice in His works!

Who looketh on the earth, and it trembleth; He toucheth the mountains, and they smoke.

I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have any being.

Let my musing be sweet unto Him; as for me, I will rejoice in the LORD.

Psalm 104:30-34

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Honest and Real

Sometimes, I have to scream.

This has been a hard week for me. Just me personally. Nothing major is going on, or wrong, I am just tired, cranky, easily angered, feeling fat and just plain worn out. The kids all had bad colds this week, so we've been stuck in the house with lots of snot, crankiness and little healthful sleep. (I think every load of laundry has had tissues covering everything).

These are the days when I struggle with thoughts like: I am clearly not cut-out to be a mom... I don't know if I can do this again tomorrow... we're having another baby?!!... what am I gonna do then?...

In fact, I have had a few breakdown-bawling spells - which I realize has something to do with the whole hormonal imbalance of pregnancy and the whole worn out and exhausted thing. But, honestly.

Thankfully, my husband is so understanding and says I'm doing a good job, as he holds me tenderly whilst I soak his strong shoulder in a thick layer of tears, mascara and snot... *sigh*

I think of my mom a lot when I have these 'breakdowns'. She had to deal with the four of us kids in a little tiny trailer, in the middle of nowhere, without family or support of any kind, while my dad worked all the time trying to build our house and start his business. She made most (all?) of our clothes, the washer and dryer were in an out-building and they slept on the hide-a-bed in the living room every night. I think of this and I shake my head, wondering how she didn't go all loony, as I feel I am going to do on some days.

There are several of you, my friends, who have more kids than I do, and I don't hear you complain. How do you do it? How do you deal with the whining and the tears and the fighting and the messes and the lack of sleep and the lack of time to yourself and the demands, and the constant cooking and cleaning and, and, and....

How did the pioneer women do it? How did my grandmothers do it? Making everything from scratch, there were no drive-thru's, no proper health care, no dishwashers, no videos to stick their kids in front of for that much needed break... So what is my problem?

I think of that Scripture that I always thought I was pretty good at:

3 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. 4 Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. –1 Peter 3:3-4

A 'gentle and quiet spirit'. I've always had one of those, at least, I thought I did. Now, well, I feel the words grumpy and cranky, might be more appropriate. Which must look pretty frumpy and ugly to the One who sees my Inner Self.

I need to enroll myself into the Holy Spirit's Inner Self Make-Over Program.

Then, even as I write this, my little boy comes to give me his goodnight kiss, which is a kiss on my cheek that he holds there for a good fifteen seconds as we both giggle. *melt, melt*

Those little people. So frustrating and so wonderful. So delicate and so resilient. So tender, so fragile, so aware of what's going on around them... They have a huge tank that needs filled daily with my love, acceptance and encouragement. God help me do this and do it well.

The Words I'm asking to wash me and help me.

I do know - this too shall pass. I know I have a Redeemer and He is ever near. I know tomorrow is fresh with new mercy to receive, goodness to partake of and grace to grasp onto. I know He will help me and protect our family in His great, kind, true love. I know He sees it all, and cares for every little bit... and oh I feel a bawling-spell coming on... ;)

Goodnight all,

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Laughter Is The Best Prozac

If any of you know me very well, or have ever lived with me, you know I can be rather serious, melancholy and down right moody at times. In fact, all my life I have struggled with that stupid self-pity demon, which always makes one see the glass as half empty.

Being Melancholy isn't a bad thing, it's usually the personality trait of some of the most talented musicians and artists, but it can be suffocating at times. Feeling like you can't get out of the "pit of despair" as Anne (of Green Gables) would put it.

Consequently, the Father ever so strategically, placed people in my life, from the beginning, who had a great sense of humor. My father being the first. That man can wake up happy - singing songs even! Without a cup of coffee first, or a shower! The horror! I remember many a Saturday waking up to the smell of french toast cooking and the sound of my Papa singing some variation of an old song he knows - and usually, ahem... with great zeal.
Now, one has to be in a pretty darn sober mood to not crack a smile at that. He is such a jovial man. But, please Pop, no tickling, and don't ask any questions, until I have woken up a bit (like I ever said it that nicely).

My brothers also played a large part in the 'people who made me laugh' group as well. Oh the stories...

Mom? well, she and I are rather equal in jovial-ness, especially in the mornings. Together, we have a lovely time, and can just BE.

Throughout life after 'home' there were friends who made me laugh, of coarse. Being an introvert, I am always drawn to the extroverts - who amaze and befuddle me - and make me laugh.

Then I married. Had I realized the power of laughter and that I needed a man who could make me laugh, I would have had that on the top of my "What I Want in a Mate" list. But God knew. BOY, did he know. I remember asking the Lord for a man who could understand me, 'cause I thought that would be quite a challenge for anyone. But my husband seems to go right through the "understanding me" issue and goes right to the heart of the matter, having the ability (most of the time, mind you) to make me laugh - at myself! What in the world? I didn't know I was sooo funny... er.. make that my melancholy-moods are rather ridiculous and hilarious when one sees herself behaving like such a silly. For the love of Sam, lighten up - that's me talking to myself.

When self-pity comes knocking at my door, and ringing the door bell, and rapping on the windows... errgh, I just have to open the door and laugh in it's face. "Get lost. Yes, I feel under-appreciated sometimes and I'd like to GET OUT and go shopping once in a myself, but goodness, I don't want you hanging around reminding me of such fribble!".

Knock, knock, who's there? pity. pity-who? Exactly.

I am so thankful for the laughter my darling husband, my family and friends bring. I have lots of loosening up to do yet. Sometimes, I just have to dance like an idiot in front of my kids to lighten myself up and make them laugh... soon I'm rolling on the floor laughing too.... and what was I so down about anyway? huh, I don't [want] to recall.

Just laugh. It feels good.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Thankful For The Mundane

I have been struggling with writing a new blog post this week because of the heaviness in my heart for the people I know or am hearing about who have so many deep and difficult issues in their lives right now. Why should I write about the silly mundane things of my life when so many good people are trying to cope with trials and hardships I can't even imagine having to deal with myself?

As I sat thinking about that, I realized that part of my calling as one who belongs to the Creator is not only praying for those who are hurting, but also to "forget not all His benefits" (Psalm 103), to bless the Lord with all my soul. Therefore, the 'silly mundane things of my life' I ought to treasure, even celebrate, and remember how good I have it on behalf of those who are struggling (does that make sense?) For instance -

I get to wake up in the morning without the dreaded fear of a doctor's call telling me the malignant or benign test results.

I get to meet the daily, hourly, minute by minute needs of my children - whom I got to carry full-term and give birth to without any complications or birth defects.

I have a loving, adoring husband AND he has a stable job which financially carries us through, so that I can stay home with our children.

I don't have to go to the doctor on a weekly basis for chemotherapy or injections to fight a disease.

My parents are both living and our relationship is better than I could ask for, and not only that, but my in-laws and I have a great relationship as well.

I get to comfort my daughter throughout the night who is fighting a bad cold knowing that it is only a cold, and not a life-threatening illness.

I have a house I get to clean and meals to prepare, rather then wondering where my family and I will sleep for the night or if I will be able to feed them enough.

I think you get the idea. There are sooo many things, people, experiences, moments, and duties to appreciate and be thankful for.

Yahweh help me (and all of us) to not forget, to not take it for granted and please help and comfort all those hurting ones who are struggling to lift their heads and carry the load they carry right now.

Love notes:

My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.
Psalms 119:50

Then maidens will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.
Jeremiah 31:13

Who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.
2 Corinthians 1:4

I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Psalms 4:8

The LORD gives strength to his people; the LORD blesses his people with peace.

Psalms 29:11

You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.
Isaiah 26:3

But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings.
Malachi 4:2

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Psalms 147:3

Thursday, February 11, 2010


I had my ultrasound yesterday. Jason had to entertain the kiddo's, so it was just me. It was all so familiar - the ultrasound experience (with Grace I ended up getting something like 17 of them), but every time it is one of the most wonderful experiences of my heart. Especially at this early stage - seeing that tiny little pea in my pod.

I always leave shaking my head wondering how ANY parent could have Atheistic beliefs. I mean that tiny little person is only about five inches long and has a beating heart and fingers and organs and gender parts, and, and... it's growing INSIDE my body! Good Night Nurse! Mind-boggling. And let's not even begin talking about abortion... no, can't go there.

Psalm 139:13-14 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Anyway, back to the point... my cute little sonographer let me see what gender the baby is. (They're not supposed to do that in BC - at least where I am living anyway). Pretty clear there were no boy parts. :)

Stunned. That's really the best word for how I feel. As well as absolutely thrilled.

Getting to be a mom of three girls and one adorable boy too! But THREE girls?! I walked away stifling giggles and giggle every time I think of it - me with three daughters. Just think of the shopping! The tea parties! The hair I'll be fixing! The emotions! The drama... And oh Father, the responsibility to raise them to have confidence, femininity, purity, respect, giving-hearts....... oh boy. I realize I am saying "I" a lot here - there is a wonderful, amazing husband doing this with me, but somehow me being the female, makes it all the more... sobering.

THANKFULLY, I get to depend on the Creator and His Spirit and His wisdom, protection, discernment and love. As well as call my mom frequently and ask her how she dealt with me.
Three girls.
I am not alone and by GOD, I can do this. :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

My Hope

Thought I would tell you about my daughter Hope.

Jason and I and our baby boy Justice had been living with my in-laws for about ten months, when I was crying out to the Lord - oh WHEN are we going to have our own place? When would I be able to have a home of my own and fulfill these dreams in my heart? I heard the Lord say, that I was pregnant with 'Hope' (and I saw myself about eight or nine months pregnant). At the time I thought He meant that my hopes would be fulfilled and given birth soon. We ended up being able to move into our house fairly soon after that and I also found out that I was pregnant.

We didn't know what gender we were getting until she was born - and even then I couldn't believe I got a girl! I thought surely we were going to have boys. I have three older brothers, and my oldest brother has five boys, and well, I must have been preparing my soul early on in life that I might not get a girl. But here she was in my arms, and all mine. And we named her HOPE. :) Isn't Yahweh funny?!

When I'm pregnant I always ask the Lord for a word or song or something for my kids and with Hope He just said, He was crazy about this one! She is loved by everyone who meets her. She is the most affectionate child I have ever beheld, her love-language is most certainly "touch". She is also very perceptive -

I have ALWAYS hated my ears. When I've looked in the mirror I always saw thick, sticking-out ears. (This is me at nine months... and my ears) I had never told Hope any of this of coarse. One night, several months ago, as Hope and I were commencing with our bed-time ritual of me laying beside her in her bed and her smothering me with kisses and hugs and "petting me" as she calls it: rubbing my arms or face, she grabbed my ear with her little hand and said, "oh, I need to hug your ears!" then she had to move my head over and do the same with the other ear and each ear got a kiss. "I love your ears momma... Their beautiful."

Oh dear. Oh my. Oh... Father. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry, so both came out. All these years of ear-loathing and self ear-mocking! Wow, God gave me those ears and just like Hope, He thinks their beautiful (so do my parents). I suddenly realized that I had been despising something He gave me and He created and, as silly as it sounds, must need love too. heh heh.

So, one little story (long though, sorry) among many about my Hope who will probably always be a giver of His HOPE wherever she goes. What a treasure.

So, don't forget to love yourself, 'cause I think it hurts His heart when we don't, you are His creation after all, every little bit of you.