Thursday, April 30, 2009

One Week Ago.

One week ago...

* My friend and worship pastor walked into an appointment with specialists.
* She was told she needed surgery to remove a cyst on her vocal chord, immediately, and to stop singing, 100% stop, right then, that moment, until she was completely healed. In fact she was to cut back on speaking as well.
* She made a couple phone calls. One was to my husband to fill in for her until she is better.

* The other was to me to fill in for Women's Retreat, which is tomorrow.



My life changed a little bit right in that moment.


The past week...

* Has included multiple prayers being said for me, with me and over me. For protection, strength, and confidence.
* Has been filled with learning the lead parts instead of back up parts to 18 songs.
* I have stretched, grown, and have seen His glory and mercy.

Today....

* Is the day of that surgery.

Tomorrow...

* I am ready.


I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Idaho....?

Oh, I am still going to Idaho. The countdown might have just changed a wee bit.
I received a call today from the friends I am visiting, her oldest has the flu. She has 5 kids....
We are going to wait a specified incubation period of time to make sure he is the only one. Then we will decide if we are going on schedule, or not.



:0)

Thankful 10 Tuesday, Progressive

If anyone took the challenge, it was to make your thankful list in a progressive fashion. his could be alphabetical, starting anywhere. Or perhaps numerical, or growing in height or size. If you haven't tried yet, I challenge you to step up to the plate.

1. A mustard seed. Mustard seeds are tiny little things. They look like a speck, yet, they grow into huge sturdy plants, reaching for the sun. There is a reason that "Faith like a mustard seed" is used.
2. The diamond on my wedding ring. It is not huge by worldy standards, but it is beautiful, and very representative of who we were at the time.
3. Grapes, because they are sweet, crisp, cold and like candy in my mouth.
4. Pillar candles. They can somehow cover up the world outside and help you focus on what is right around you.
5. Paperback books. Enough said.
6. Laptop computers. I had one, briefly. It was a very nice thing.
7. Babies.
8. My Pillow. I take my favorite one with me when I travel, it makes a huge difference in how well I sleep.
9. Heck, my bed too. I wish I could take it with me when I travel!
10. My house. It may be small, but it is still charming, and a good place to live.


Join me, be thankful for the big and small, or whatever comes to mind!





Next week: Make a thankful list of things from your childhood, say birth through elementary school. :)

Monday, April 27, 2009

You Know You're A Blogger When...

I was sitting at the computer and uttered the words, "I need to write something"

Spencer responded with, "Do you want me to say something funny?"




:)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A story of faith.

This was an email sent to me. I know not the original author, for I would certainly give full credit if I did. This came at a perfect moment for me, to be reminded that He really can do anything. ALL things are possible, not just the things we think of as earthly possible.
___________________


This beautiful story was written by a doctor who worked in Africa .

One night I had worked hard to help a mother in the labor ward; but in spite of all we could do, she died, leaving us with a tiny, premature baby and a crying two-year-old daughter.
We would have difficulty keeping the baby alive, as we had no incubator (we had no electricity to run an incubator) . We also had no special feeding facilities. Although we lived on the equator, nights were often chilly with treacherous drafts.
One student midwife went for the box we had for such babies and the cotton wool that the baby would be wrapped in. Another went to stoke up the fire and fill a hot water bottle. She came back shortly in distress to tell me that in filling the bottle, it had burst (rubber perishes easily in tropical climates ).

'And it is our last hot water bottle!' she exclaimed. As in the West, it is no good crying over spilled milk, so inCentral Africa it might be considered no good crying over burst water bottles. They do not grow on trees, and there are no drugstores down forest pathways.


'All right,' I said, 'put the baby as near the fire as you safely can, and sleep between the baby and the door to keep it free from drafts. Your job is to keep the baby warm.'

The following noon , as I did most days, I went to have prayers with any of the orphanage children who chose to gather with me. I gave the youngsters various suggestions of things to pray about and told them about the tiny baby. I explained our problem about keeping the baby warm enough, mentioning the hot water bottle, and that the baby could so easily die if it got chills. I also told them of the two-year-old sister, crying because her mother had died.

During prayer time, one ten -year-old girl, Ruth, prayed with the usual blunt conciseness of our African children. 'Please, God' she prayed, 'Send us a hot water bottle today. It'll be no good tomorrow, God, as the baby will be dead, so please send it this afternoon.'

While I gasped inwardly at the audacity of the prayer, she added, 'And while You are about it, would You please send a dolly for the little girl so she'll know You really love her?'

As often with children's prayers, I was put on the spot. Could I honestly say 'Amen'? I just did not believe that God could do this. Oh, yes, I know that He can do everything; the Bible says so. But there are limits, aren't there? The only way God could answer this particular prayer would be by sending me a parcel from the homeland. I had been in Africa for almost four years at that time, and I had never, ever, received a parcel from home.

Anyway, if anyone did send me a parcel, who would put in a hot water bottle? I lived on the equator!

Halfway through the afternoon, while I was teaching in the nurses' training school, a message was sent that there was a car at my front door. By the time I reached home, the car had gone, but there on the verandah was a large 22-pound parcel. I felt tears pricking my eyes. I could not open the parcel alone, so I sent for the orphanage children. Together we pulled off the string, carefully undoing each knot. We folded the paper, taking care not to tear it unduly. Excitement was mounting. Some thirty or forty pairs of eyes were focused on the large cardboard box.

>From the top, I lifted out brightly-colored, knitted jerseys. Eyes sparkled as I gave them out. Then there were the knitted bandages for the leprosy patients, and the children looked a little bored. Then came a box of mixed raisins and sultanas - that would make a batch of buns for the weekend. Then, as I put my hand in again, I felt the.....could it really be? I grasped it and pulled it out. Yes, a brand new, rubber hot water bottle. I cried.

I had not asked God to send it; I had not truly believed that He could. Ruth was in the front row of the children. She rushed forward, crying out, 'If God has sent the bottle, He must have sent the dolly, too!'

Rummaging down to the bottom of the box, she pulled out the small, beautifully-dressed dolly. Her eyes shone! She had never doubted! Looking up at me, she asked: 'Can I go over with you and give this dolly to that little girl, so she'll know that Jesus really loves her?' Of course, I replied!

That parcel had been on the way for five whole months, packed up by my former Sunday school class, whose leader had heard and obeyed God's prompting to send a hot water bottle, even to the equator. And one of the girls had put in a dolly for an African child - five months before, in answer to the believing prayer of a ten-year-old to bring it 'that afternoon.'

'Before they call, I will answer.' (Isaiah 65:24)

Foo Foo Phooey

I need an attitude adjustment.
Please understand, I am fully admitting that this is MY PROBLEM, MINE.

I do not like Foo-Foo traditionally thought of as girly , womanly things.
I don't.

I am not a tom-boy woman, I am not anti feminine...don't mistake this for anything else. I even like the color pink within reason.

BUT ...

Why does EVERYTHING associated with a woman have roses and pink fluff and ribbons and hearts and china tea cups, and things of that nature? WHY?

I realize we are designed to beautify our surroundings, it's what we do, we nest, we make a home out of four blank walls. Does it have to be reminiscent of the "romantic era" to represent womanliness? Does it?
I didn't think so.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Thankful Ten Tuesday!

Before I put up today's list I want to tell you what next week's is:
Progressive.

Whatever you start with you must progress from there...
For Example: If you start with something that starts with the letter M, your next thankful item should start with N and the next O. You can start anywhere in the alphabet...or perhaps a number instead. But take the challenge and progress your list.Or instead this could also mean a progression of height, or size...a pea to a bowling ball to the earth...
So come on! You can do it! Be thankful, lift your spirits, lift your thanks.
Changing your life starts with changing your attitude about your life.
I choose JOY and THANKFULNESS!
Even though every thing else is hard.


Life is a journey:

1. IM chatting with great friends when things get frustrating.
2. Text, phone calls and real mail.
3. Having friends over to play cards. (Learned a new game last night, totally fun)
4. Driving for hours to see friends that live far away. (Here I come IDAHO!)
5. Parents that love me.
6. A partner that will always stand next to me, through all of this.
7. A friend that can see the humor in the words, "And now I am being sued too!"
8. Interesting people everywhere I go.
9. Games to help keep the mind sharp.
10.Xerox machines.

This list is compiled of things from just this last week.
What happened this last week that you are thankful for?
Share with me.

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Twist, on a Classic

I don't know about your 8 year old, but mine loves to tell jokes. His repertoire has become quite large lately, I am sure partly due to a joke book, but also because the kid remembers all the jokes told to him by anyone. This collection of jokes of course includes a series regarding a chicken and a road.....


Saturday my husband needed to fill up his car with gas before the onslaught that is Sunday busy-ness. Spencer accompanied him on this particular journey, especially since my husband's work schedule changed and they don't have much time together right now. This factor, plus the fact that Aaron is who is he is, meant they took the long way home. This would include toodling through back roads. Apparently, while toodling, in a busy area of town no less, a turkey crossed the road....

without missing a beat Spencer said:

"I guess the chicken really is on vacation".

Friday, April 17, 2009

TEN!

My sweet hubby and I are celebrating ten years this week. We've had our ups and downs, but we are a team.

I love you honey!

Thank you for :
1. Always reminding me how much you love me.
2. Absolutely being the one for me.
3. Reassuring me, a lot.
4. Overlooking my flaws!
5. Never giving up on me.

AND thank you for being:

6. Caring and concerned for others.
7. Astonishingly talented.
8. Responsible and trustworthy.
9. Original.You are unique and wonderful.
10.Loving.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Eight Meme

Lori tagged me in a meme and so...ACTUALLY...so go visit her site and read an incredible story of love regarding the on going story of her youngest son, and his contested adoption.
Did you go read it? Okay...
now you can read this:

8 Things I am Looking Forward to:
A day when I get everything done
Getting out of debt (somehow)
A trip to Idaho
Moving into something bigger (please let it be soon)
Alyssa and Tim's wedding
Singing
Making money writing or being creative
Being thinner

8 Things I Did Yesterday:
Laundry
Prayed
Took a shower
Went to work
Laughed out loud at the movie Bolt
Had a portion of "The Talk" with Spencer
Went to the bank
Watched Slumdog Millionaire

8 Things I Wish I Could do:
Act on a regular basis
Buy a house again
Get paid to write
Play the Cello
Generously give to friends in need
Not count every calorie
Have a clear path of what's next
Get my book written

8 Shows I Enjoy:(Please remember we have no current signal or TV subscriptions)
Monk
Scrubs
Arrested Development
Iron Chef
Good Eats
Wild Wild West
Myth Busters
The British version of Trading Spaces


8 people I tag:
Thany of Falling Out Of The Wardrobe
Missy Shell of Snow Comes Up
Amy,Reality or a reasonable facsimile there of...
Marky of Wheat Free Clan (Come out of retirement)
Kristy, private though you may be...
Heather, Drivel and Whatnot
SchuMom at Out Of The Schubox
MomofDudes at Seasons of My LIfe

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Day Finally Arrived.

WARNING: PG material.

As Spencer and I finished up lunch today he started asking questions...

"Mom, how does color happen on a baby, I mean,say one parent is one color and then the other is something else, like you and dad...did Dad's DNA get passed through to you like when you kiss?"

"Um, no" I answer, turning a little red...I mean, he isn't clueless about all this, and he watches nature shows ...I continue, "It isn't when we kiss".

"Is it sperm?"

Whoa, how does he know that much, did I tell him that? Did a friend?

He continues, "Wait, but that's on eggs"
aaahhh nature shows...

"Actually Spencer, it is sperm"

"Does dad use his belly button or something. I mean milk comes from part of you(he makes a hand gesture towards my chest), is it a body part thing?"

"Spencer, that's what a penis is for"

He looks at me, acknowledges this fact,"That's why girls don't have them right?"
"Yes".
Then his face changes, an eyebrow shoots up and he asks
"You mean I am going to have to do something with it? What am I going to HAVE to do?"
He says this like he was told someday he is going to have to paint the house. I didn't laugh, on the outside anyway.

He continued before I had a chance to say anything, "So, you have to connect together somehow...I see" and he smiled.

I added in that this is something special that God intended for married people. He suddenly said,
"That's what they mean by having sex"

Like in the back of his mind he had been mulling around the mystical word..."SEX"...for awhile.

The conversation shifted to how the DNA forms a new pattern, and although the same parents can have many children that they can all look alike or very different. We spoke of different blood types and how the umbilical cord works. Whew.
For the moment he is satiated with new knowledge. He mentioned that he is surprised I waited this long to tell him all this. I answered that we waited for him to ask. To which he says , "I have wondered my WHOLE life!"

I love that kid.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Thankful Ten Tuesday! PEOPLE!

Oh so very thankful:

1. Everyone involved in the yumminess that is ice cream. Many legends exist, but whomever, where-ever, whenever it was invented, yeah, I am thankful.
2. Whomever invented caramel too.
3. The person in line with the cart load that let's me go first when all I have is one or two items.
4. Truly helpful customer service representatives. Ones that keep their cool and know their stuff.
5. Cashiers and servers that are still friendly at the end of their shift.
6. Babies and toddlers that smile, wave and coo when I smile at them.
7. Leaders that not only know how to lead, but when to delegate and let others lead too...
8. Optimistic, hopeful, full of real joy people, they are such a delight to be around.
9. Librarians.
10.Massage Therapists. :)


Just in case any one out there posts a list this week, here is a way to link it up.
I want to be optimistic.
List one to ten things...just be thankful.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Must be Monday

Must clean house.

MUST CLEAN HOUSE!


And correct school work,
and do laundry,
and avoid Easter candy,
and look good for the appointment I have later.

So, for all my musts, it means I must stay off the computer today
and not read blogs
and stay away from FaceBook
and wait to blog stories in my head.


But tomorrow is another day...and a TUESDAY at that. THANKFUL TEN TUESDAY TOMORROW! (Or for those of you having a hard time, Thankful Two Tuesday).
Subject:
People.
You can make a list of 10 people you are thankful for, could be the inventor of something you love, or a great Aunt. OR make a list of 10 things about one person. Your choice.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, April 10, 2009

And Another Thing!

I've said it before, and I'll say it again...
if you are in the checkout line at a store, or dealing with someone, like a server, or customer service, PLEASE GET OFF YOUR PHONE.
If the call is that important why are doing something else at all? Move over and take your call, then get back in line, OR finish your transaction and then call them back!

A woman in front of me at the grocery store today was so rude it really made me angry. She apparently had two different groupings of groceries, perhaps for a friend, or billing purposes. But her phone call was so important that she didn't speak to the cashier at all, and after the first group was completed she walked away from the counter. The checker scanned the items and looked at me...I told her I thought they were the other lady's things...wait, lady is too nice, THAT WOMAN, over there, being rude.
The woman, when asked quietly and politely if those things were also hers looked sternly at the checker, narrowed her eyes and flung her hand in the air in a little circle "get moving" motion. She had "you idiot" written all over her face. Eventually she came back over to pay...never speaking at all to the cashier.

I realize important calls happen, and I realize people get really busy and try to multitask beyond the norm.
But please...
That cashier, or server, or customer service person deserve a minute of your time, they work hard, and they aren't paid enough to have to deal with you waving your hand at them like they should know what's going on when you don't even speak to them.

Okay, thank you for your kind attention.
Rant Over.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Hey Just Born!

Dear Just Born-makers of Peeps,

I think maybe some attention needs to be directed to your kitchen, something is amiss back there and I fear a few people are slaking off at their jobs! *

Exhibit A:





I didn't know Old Grandma Peeps were available this year. I find it odd considering your company is called "Just Born".



Look at those wrinkles!


"Hey Mildred, Happy Easter!"
"WHAT?!"






Exhibit B:


Um, when did you start making different genders?




Best Regards,
Crayl


* This is in jest. I did contact the company about the wrinkled Peeps, they had no air fluffed in them, they were very weird. The company sent me a nice email and said something should be arriving in the mail in a few weeks! How fun is that? YAY for good customer service!!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

To Whom It May Concern;

Dear Tahachapi, Ca,

In an effort to find a quick lunch for my son and I we mistakenly took an exit leading into your town, stating that a quick lunch suitable establishment was not too far away. 25 minutes later, I finally found it.

I don't know who designed your streets, but I seriously don't appreciate the loop approach. Everytime I thought I was heading back to the freeway I ended up at the same place I started. In fact the only way I found our lunch restaurant was through pure luck. Not funny Tahachapians, not funny at all. Perhaps you are an ill humored group just looking to trap innocent travelers to increase your own population numbers against a rival town...I can see how frustrating it would be, and just giving up and living there. It is pretty and all...but it didn't work. I ESCAPED. So there.

Best regards towards your evil plans,
Crayl

Monday, April 6, 2009

Thankful Ten List, My Daughter Moved Out

The title sounds evil doesn't it? Read on.


1. Now I can test if tissues with lotion are actually better than tissues without.
2. I can answer obscure phone calls with questions like, "What kind of pickles do I like?"
3. I can narrow down who's making the biggest messes around here.
4. I can test how well I did as a parent before the other two leave.
5. I have more to pray about, more prayer, more time with my Father.
6. One more person to send photo text when I see weird things.
7. Test the theory of Momtelepathy.
8. Have another reason to take road trips.
9. Perhaps, just maybe, she will let me be a friend on Facebook now....maybe.
10. I can watch her grow and mature as she gets ready to get married and really get started on a grand path set before her. I have nothing against staying home longer, but she needed this, it will help her. Marriage is a big adjustment, and having to truly take care of her own home, and cook and clean up after yourself, because no one else will, is really going to make the adjustment easier.

I miss her, but this is a good thing overall.


Anyone out there thankful for something?
Hard week? Try the Thankful Two Tuesday, it's okay, I will support you!




Bad Attitude? Try some Gratitude!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Dentist Office or Animated Section of a Major Theme Park*

While in Arizona for a couple days, helping my daughter settle in, I took a drive up to Prescott to visit Heidi, a close friend since 3rd grade. We went to the same schools, the same church, and lived around the corner from each other growing up. She moved to South Carolina a bit after she got married, but worked for an airline, so I still got to see her. Much later, when we had moved to Arizona, she moved to Colorado. Not too long after that I got a call "Hey guess what? We are moving to Arizona!"
To which I had to answer, "Hey guess what? We are moving back to California."
It was a sad moment.

But we are still friends, and the visit was fabulous.
During my time with her she had to take her kids to the dentist. No big deal, we could still talk away while waiting. Now, I had seen this pediatric dentist office on a previous visit to Prescott, but from afar it just looked like a fun painted barn...


I had no idea...







In had a TV room, and a video game room, and the tile in the bathroom looked like fresh grass.It was fun, and the people were so nice.








I found out this office also had specially trained personnel for patients with Autism, or other conditions. One such older boy came in while we were there. The Dentist came out and spoke to the dad, wearing these fun pants...






Heidi's girls came out from the back with balloon swords and hats, and toys from a treasure box. Looking relaxed, happy, and with nicely cleaned teeth. I seriously wanted to get my teeth cleaned too.







* wink wink, you know, that little animated town within that D land.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Home Again, Home Again, Boop Boop Be Doo.

Well, I made it home.
I will be writing more about the trip later. For now I just wanted to say how wonderful it was to see so many people! How sad it was to miss a few key people, sorry about the time constraints, and how thankful I am for everyone involved in this whole event!
Generosity is an amazing thing.
Without it this whole thing wouldn't have happened as easily as it did.

Alyssa is set up in her new apartment. We had time together before she was completely on her own. She has a bed to sleep on and a little retro loveseat. Things are good. She also has some wonderful food in her freezer waiting for her to prepare from the combined efforts of myself and Heidi of Entree's Made Easy in Prescott...if you live anywhere near there, check it out. They deliver in the greater Phoenix area as well!

Stories to look forward to:
Disneyland Or Dentist Office, You Decide.
An open letter to Tahachapi, Ca.
Thankful Ten list of "My Baby's Moving Out".
Imagination VS. Reality, or Coming Home To Clean Up.
And seriously, Why This Is Okay