Monday, December 1, 2014

Open Letter to Parents of Theatre Kids

Dear Parents of kids in productions,

I want to start by saying that we love your kids. They are great. We love watching them stretch and grow into parts that are not easy for them. We love challenging them and watching them sprout wings and fly! It can truly be amazing, and they grow in confidence and knowledge, and maybe they will face new things with a can do attitude in the future. I would like too think we are helping build a work ethic. A REAL work ethic, where you work, not where you are handed something for nothing.

This is probably one of the greatest gifts one can learn, it will help in all aspects of life, it equips them to be truly amazing adults, and isn't that what the world needs?

Now let's talk about shows....









All of these photos represent one play. ONE. One play done 10 different ways. A director takes a script and interprets it. It is not cookie cutter, laid out for you and you do it exactly like the movie or the Broadway version. We must adapt many scripts to be appropriate for a school setting or younger actors. Music must be found in our case because we do not have a band. Proper keys must be found for our particular singers. All dance numbers must be choreographed and taught. A feel for the interpretation must be shared, and designed, and created. Stage action, even what seems obvious or natural, must be created and taught...and adapted to your personal space. Not all stages are alike, just like our children. You must work with the students available. This means working extra time to improve singing abilities and teaching dance to those that have never danced before. A lot of behind the scenes preparation goes into a production, even before the kids audition.

Let's talk about time.
If you were just cast in a musical, and given 12 brand new to you songs to learn, and lines in many scenes how much time would it take you to get ready? Now add dance moves, and many costume changes. In our school, due to limited, well, everything, we have 3 hours a week.
Three a week.
And about 12 weeks total before the curtain rises.
We have over 35 kids to teach, direct, costume, and in many cases, corral. Yes, I said it. A room with that many kids in it, and they all know each other, which is great. It is wonderful that they like each other and are friends, except that they talk, a lot,  when they are supposed to be listening and learning new directions. Due to this one must speak with authority. One must use a stage voice. It isn't yelling, it is using loud volume to be heard. One must emphasize that we only have so much time and so many weeks until this is on stage, no more "oops, was that my line". No more missed ques. We work the kids hard so that when the time comes they can go on stage and be professional. They can be their character, not merely "Johnny" in a costume.

This isn't a bunch of kids in vegetable costumes reading a sentence about the goodness of asparagus.
This is real theatre.
We call extra rehearsals because we HAVE to. Believe me, we want our vacation days too. We sacrifice them, unpaid, so that the end product is better. So you can be proud that your kids did so well.

Please,  please, when your kids whine about how hard it is, or it seems like the director is mad, take it with a grain of salt. If they complained about chemistry being hard would you march in and demand the class to be easier? I would hope not, chemistry is what it is, and it isn't necessarily easy, but if it isn't fully taught, then your kid misses out out on truly learning it. When they push through and work hard, then they really accomplish something, and then they can be proud of themselves.

We are so proud of the work they do, and how far they have come, please don't stop them from fully discovering how amazing they can be to make it easy for them. I am a parent, I understand it's hard when your kid is frustrated or tired, or feeling down.
Trust us, they will FLY! They will succeed, and they will glow with accomplishment.

And if you want it easier?
Come to class, volunteer, help work lines or songs with students and paint sets and sew costumes.

Thank you,




Sunday, November 30, 2014

About That Tree

Almost all my stuff is in storage. My Christmas decorations, gift wrap, yarn, craft stuff, most of our movies (we kept out Christmas ones), recipe books (BIG MISTAKE) and well, everything.

The family we are staying with recently acquired a love seat and sofa set, they have never had 2 units like this, so they are debating about whether or not to put up their big Christmas tree. I tried to help out in the over-all "Hey we could do it like this" conversation, but the husband is convinced it is too big .  He is talking about a little 3 footer maybe. I hope some sort of agreement is made. I love Christmas, I love a house decked out for it and well, so very much is already so weird and different that I would be sad if there wasn't some sort of Christmas decor.

He did string up lights outside yesterday, YAY! I love the lights most of all.

He isn't being a scrooge or anything, it's a space thing, although they have both admitted they hate putting it up and taking it down. I offered help, and now I have stepped out of the on going conversation.

In other news today is the last day of NoBloPoMo.
I made it.
Whew.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

One More Time!

The month is nearly over! I blogged (nearly) everyday! I honestly didn't think I could make it. With all that has gone on this month, including another (very fast) move, I honestly thought I would just fizzle out mid-month, but here I am! Writing this post, and one more tomorrow.

Can you tell I am tired?

I actually have a lot to say about life right now, but there is this privacy thing, because most of my stuff right now involves other people, and well, perhaps they don't want their lives all over the interwebs.

Also, some stuff in the works needs to be kept quiet, for the sake of others, we aren't out to hurt anyone, quit the opposite, we need to protect. Nothing is a done deal anyway.

I feel like I am juggling...
but not some "easy" three perfectly weighted balls, oh no. I am juggling a chainsaw, a raw egg, and a live cat, and maybe a wine glass too, just to make it interesting.
I think maybe I also have an eye patch on.

Just be a duck. Let it roll off your back.
Let it go.
Roll with the punches.
God's bigger than this.
Don't worry, be happy.

:)

Friday, November 28, 2014

So This Happened

After finishing a long over night shift at work (she works retail) my daughter entered her home, where she found us, her mom dad and little brother sitting in her living room.  She said a slight swear word under her breath. I expected it, she startles easily.
Ryan handed Spencer his phone and said here, it's on video.
Jenelle was heading across the room, but Ryan gentle grabbed her, "Come here".
"We're going to do this right now? I have to pee"

It's on the video, it will live on forever.

He took a knee and pulled out something sparkly from his pocket and asked my daughter to marry him.
She cried before the words got out of his mouth, and she said yes.

The wedding is in a month.

Sometimes the formal asking gets waylaid by a job that takes you away from home, and also from a maturing money CD that you have to wait for to buy the ring, because he is wise with money like that. 

We are happy, she's is very happy.


Thursday, November 27, 2014

A Moment.

Just a moment to remember what we have to be grateful for...
1. Situations that make me prove I am really an adult.
2. Life's curve balls that keep me on my toes ...
3. and using my brain
4. Circumstances that lead to total dependance on God. I know some people think that the only way to be happy is to be self reliant, I think it only brings disaster. No one can do this life truly alone.
5. Moments that I have to make a conscience (and sometimes really hard) choice to be nice.
6. Times of utter confusion, and not jumping to conclusions.
7. Painful events that remind me I am alive, and be thankful for my health.
8. Big problems that remind me that little things are worthy to be grateful for as well.
9. Growth. Think about it, water that doesn't move and flow is stagnant and smelly and gross, and well, who wants that?
10.I am thankful for the things that build my character and faith, even if I feel I should be done by now.

May you have a gratitude filled Thanksgiving, and may blessings of joy find you.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Big Thank You

A big thank you and shout out to my parents that raised me.
They had some practice before me, and I appreciate those siblings that went before me so my parents could practice before me, which is probably a good thing. :)

Life is weird and interesting and a roller coaster, you know the kind, you are exciterd and want to puke all at the same time while laughing? Yeah, kinda like that.

I am very grateful to have a place to go tomorrow, to fellowship and break bread and give thanks to God for all the blessings we have and will be given, even the hard ones. Even when the path we are one doesn't make any sense to us. I know it will all work out, to His glory and for our good.

I hope you know this.
It's not an easy lesson. One would rather stomp a foot and demand better.
One would indeed.

But then one learns to quiet herself down, and just roll with the punches.

Yep.

Here I go, rolling.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ten On Tuesday!

Long ago my main focus of this blog was gratitude. I did a Ten On Tuesday list every week, specifically of thanksgiving and praise and gratitude. Giving a moment to declare thanks to God for blessings.  Gratitude has gotten me through most of the hard parts of my life, so considering all that is going on here is a TOT list!

1. My husband, my rock. We are in this together and we are for each other.
2. My kids, and their lives and adventures.
3. Friends. Safe friends specifically, that I can word purge the deep dark stuff and they will still love me.
4. Traditions, and flexibility to let some go sometimes....this year is complicated, nothing will be what we would consider normal or tradition. But that's okay, because we can still have fun, enjoy the season and do new things. We can alwasy return to old things another time.
5. Cream puffs.
6. Paper, pens, books, and whatnot.
7. Figuring out gifts, and using them. As in what one is gifted to do...
8. Figuring out gifts, as in what to give someone. :) I love giving presents. I may not be able to give all I want, or to as many as I want, but I do love it when I get to!
9. Vision. To literally see, and to see what's not seen, or is yet to be.
10. Grace and Mercy. We all need it.



Monday, November 24, 2014

THANKFUL!

It is with deep gratitude to God and those He has surrounded us with ....

I AM THANKFUL

A warm place to sleep
friendship
storage units
mostly working cars
clean clothes
silliness
essential oils
borrowed trucks
new jobs
miracles



Sunday, November 23, 2014

MIssed One, uh, Make That Two

Apparently I missed a day posting. Oops. I just noticed yesterday, the 22nd, that I only had 20 posts, I had no idea I missed. Well, one day I did know, I was at a hotel with no way to do anything. But the other? Brain melt I guess.

I am not perfect.
Neither are you, nope it's true, you aren't.
I am working on some stuff, even the stuff I don't want to.
You know the stuff...the things you don't want to admit about yourself outloud because it makes it more real, not that it can really hide, because there you are, and there it is, where is it going to go?

I took on this challenge, and I am not even sure why. Peer pressure?
Yeah, that's it, (except it wasn't directly).

I wanted to be part of the cool kids?
They were all doing it?

Could be.

I miss writing like I used to. I miss having something to say.

Some days I am just trying to survive, and there is nothing more I can say than, I AM STILL ALIVE!

Thanking God:
Rain
A room to share.
Food to eat
Clean water to drink
Education
Oppoprtunity
Grace
Mercy
and Family, whether blood or not.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

1 Box,2 Box,3 Box, BREAK!

We didn't bring much with us, or so I thought. Just a fraction of what we own, just a small amount of plates/glasses, small kitchen appliances and mostly just clothing, food and work /school related stuff. One very small box of DVD's that was never unpacked. But somehow, I am exhausted packing this time. Maybe it's the amazing rainy weather. We are grateful for the rain in this drought, even if it slows us down and makes this even more difficult.

When we pull the big borrowed vehicle with the trailer in, it will be through mud, at both locations. We are looking at our storage unit knowing we have to re-arrange to get all of this in. Very little can with us this time. Clothes, and computers/schoolwork, and Aaron's work gear. Even that sounds like a lot for one bedroom. It is.

Maybe that's why God had me so interested in small houses, tiny houses, and all that. Less stuff, more living.

But in the mean time, we just need to get what we have left here packed up and moved out and put away.

My brain knows it, but my emotions and my body are in rebellion.

I am exhausted.

I am fighting, fighting being bitter that our "gentlemen's agreement" has been broken. I understand the weird circumstances, but it was broken just the same. I am fighting to not take on an attitude of "can't trust anyone", fighting to keep my head above water and not just sit and cry or pull the covers over my head and not come out. I'd rather make a blanket fort and eat popcorn and watch movies. I'd rather color in a coloring book and chat with long time friends. I'd rather do many, many other things than pack these boxes, again, and move, again. But I will do it, and I will fight it all off.




Thursday, November 20, 2014

On The Move

We are re-packing our bags and boxes.
Circumstances have changed for the people we are living with and they need the space we are occupying back.
So we are moving out.

I was going to do a post about where we were, but now it doesn't matter.
A post on how I don't really have a kitchen but with a few small appliances, I was still able to cook healthy meals.

A post about the wonders of an electric kettle, a toaster oven and my amazing rice cooker, it has a "saute and simmer" button. It was essential for cooking real food.


But now everything goes in a box. Most will go into storage as just clothing and computers (bills, schoolwork and Aaron's work gear) come with us to share one bedroom all together in someone's home.

Am I grateful? Oh yes.
I had two offers, but one is so far away from the places we have to be several times a week (17 trips minimum) that the gas would break the bank. Another option I thought might be available just couldn't say yes because of their well going dry and their septic failing. That is a sad truth, they have a lot to face. These friends,  have a small house, but big hearts and will have the space ready by Monday for moving in. So that's where we will be.

Monday.
A few days before Thanksgiving.
A week off school but full of rehearsals because we only have 2 weeks as of tomorrow until the show. And no, not everyone has a costume yet. No stress there.




Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Soothing



I lifted this right off of my friend Lori's blog. See?

"Life is chaotic. We run from one activity to the next, sometimes never taking the time to quiet our souls and reflect. Do you want to slow down? Calm your nerves? Change the atmosphere in your house? Soothe your soul? I have the pleasure of offering you an incredible musical experience that is designed to do those very things.

My good friend and incredible musician, Aaron Gayden, created Katoikeo, a gorgeous instrumental album. Filled with beautiful melodies, Katoikeo is perfect for background music at a dinner party or event, unwinding at the end of the day, or entering into a time of worship. The album is simply stunning and Aaron's talent shines brightly through.

You can purchase individual songs for just 0.99 cents, download the album for $9.99 or buy the CD for $12.00. 

Aaron has generously offered "Just One Dollar" all proceeds from Katoikeo from now until the end of 2014. So if you'd like to support our fundraising efforts with something tangible and you'd like to listen to the amazing Aaron Gayden, please consider Katoikeo. Just click here!"
 
 
I have introduced this album before, and now you can purchase it with purpose.
This is only the downloadable version, but share the link with others, it is a worthy cause, and an amazing album. It is soothing and refreshing.
 
 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Pop, Pop, Pop

As a parent it is very hard to watch a kid do something in which they may (or may not!) get hurt. But our bubbled wrapped kids don't get to push their limits, they don't get to discover the things they CAN do, they are living in a world of can't. We spent hours unsupervised (other than checking in) exploring and creating and being active on bikes, roller skates or on foot. We created games, and stories, new food combinations and worked out conflict. We learned boundaries with each other.  Fear holds back progress and discovery.


I read an article today that in New Zealand they have lifted some rules in one school's play yard.  The kids can build forts, climb on things, and "rough and tumble", or rough house. 

I was going to link the article, but it linked to something else about how gender neutral parenting is failing instead, which is also an interesting article, but nothing to do with today's topic.

I guess time will tell, but I do think loosening up the grip on kids is a fabulous idea.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Ringing

As a follow up to yesterdays post, here is another amazing rendition of a classic Christmas Carol, that I happen to love. This is fun and lively, and everything you hear is human voice. Love it,




Yes, I know it isn't Christmas yet. Yes, I honor and look forward to Thanksgiving first. Our world is topsy turvy, and I need seasonal high points ahead of time to help with mood and keeping focused on good stuff.

Don't be offended.

Sometimes we just need it a little early.
A little more traditional:

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Did You Know?



One of the most requested Christmas songs for Aaron. Would love to add in som eof these other parts and sing it with him.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

As a Whole

Last night we were all together for a few hours.
We were busy working on wedding stuff, but we were together.

It crossed my mind that we have few of these moments left before some huge changes. Within the next few months, and the months following, this will be nearly impossible for a few years. I can not dwell on it as a negative, simply a change. It's all exciting, and amazing, and great things are going to happen, but our core unit of five, now six, soon to be seven with the addition of another son in law, well, we won't have the opportunities to be together like we do know.
It is a special thing, to be cherished.
And I am thankful for each moment together.


Friday, November 14, 2014

A Miracle, for a Miracle...

$1
Four quarters, ten dimes, twenty nickels, one hundred pennies.
A small hamburger, small french fries, super small plain coffee, one item from the dollar store, candy bar, or perhaps, a donation towards the adoption of a baby girl.

Alone it isn't much, but together it will bring her to a loving home.

Please watch this


and please consider one dollar given in compassion for someone else...
and then, please share this on FaceBook, Twitter, or your own blog.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Who's Your King?

We are doing a video Bible study on Wednesday nights. Right In The Eye.  It is a study on Judges. Powerful and scary and eye opening stuff.
Last night he made a simple statement that really hit home for the room...
If you aren't choosing to follow God (the  KING) then you automatically are following little kings...
This could include, but is not limited to: Consumption, fear, greed, lust, appetite, worry, you get the idea. This stems from a place of , "I can do what I want, when I want, whenever I want....as long as no one gets hurt, but of course, someone always gets hurts. He said there is a rebellion that happens and we choose it, and eventually it goes from "I won't" to "I can't"

I don't want to be in the "I can't" camp.

Which King are you choosing?

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

It's A...Revealed

In case you were wondering the end of the blog story I mentioned the other day...

HERE IT IS!


So exciting.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Dread Pirate Roberts

My title has nothing to do with this post. Sorry.
I am a big fan of the movie however and if you  want to talk about it, I am a willing participant.

I am leaving the house in a few minutes and not coming back until probably 9pm. I know a lot of people work crazy hours, I know a lot of people commute crazy hours every day. This isn't my norm. Worst part is, my on and husband are home today.

Should have planned better. But there really isn't a way to change any of the events happening today. Timing is everything. Special work, days off, and meetings. All good things in their own right.

I am helping a friend organize her house before the holidays, I have done this with her for several years now. I am also helping my daughter with wedding stuff, and still hunting costumes down for White Christmas, and then onto and essential oils class learning how to stay healthy this winter. All good things.  I am enjoying not having toddlers anymore. Sorry to all you toddler/baby, small children moms out there. I did it, I get it, and you will be here one day too! You really will! It seems like eternity some days, I know...but then poof, here you are. I promise.

Just took a glance at Spencer's pants, too short! Looks like he grew again, so I will add that to the list.

It's a different kind of busy.


Sunday, November 9, 2014

I Am DIsgusted...

Why is this okay?
Why, and more importantly HOW can something this horrific get so covered up that it possible...and more importantly, why isn't this bigger in the news?

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/piadesolenni/did-the-kenyan-bishops-just-expose-who-unicef/


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Seeing You Across a Smoked Filled Room

Sitting with the sound man, watching you play, through the smoke of cigarettes and the air heavy with false hope and despair. The slot machine noise drown out by electric melodies, cutting through the thickness in the room. The early ones are here just to dance, a chance to shake it free, and enjoy an evening together. Others are taking a rest from droning electric lull.

I sit and enjoy the dancers, cowboys twirling their ladies about the floor, patterning , dip spin, scoot, step, repeat. A beautiful set of gals of all ages take the floor with their line dancing, perhaps newly learned for some. They laugh and fill the room.

As the evening goes on, the lightness of these groups fade, and exits and a different crowd emerges. Yes, it is true some are there for fun, a good time, but now good time means getting drunk and seeking to break lonliness.
The saddness thickens as well.

I am no better than anyone else, I also do not always cope with the tough stuff in good ways. I do not look down on them, or pity them, though I am sad. I want them to know there is something more, something better. I watch poor choices being made, I watch "Elaine" dance.


You take the lead on a song, one you usually sing right to me, but there is a woman on the dance floor that blocks our gaze. I worry she will think that look is for her.  The band carries on through the set lists, hour after hour, all while inhaling the toxins and giving their best.

You work hard. You practice hard, you commit. I love you for all of it.
Thank you.



Friday, November 7, 2014

Suspense, ugh

A friend is blogging over DAYS on what's going on in her life, which seems like it is leading up to the announcement of a newly adopted daughter, perhaps, we don't know yet, she hasn't gotten that far. KNOCK IT OFF AND TELL US.
This is a real life friend too, not just someone I randomly read...

If it wasn't something so exciting I might be upset. Suspense is hard.
But isn't it for most of us? Waiting to find out what's next? Waiting to see if it all works out?
Instant gratification anyone?
Yeah, thought so.

I know I can trust God with my life and all the up in the air stuff, because in the end, if we stay faithful, it will all work out for good. And I don't mean American dream good, just good. These past few months I have had the rug pulled out from under me, I have been slapped in the face(figuratively), I have had seemingly wonderful possibilities and good situations fall through and everything replaced with UNKNOWNS.

UGH! THE SUSPENSE!
Yes, I am yelling.
And rightly so.

I want a spoiler! I want someone to spill the beans (Hi Lord), I want a sneak peak....

But how is that trust and faith?
It isn't, that is relying on answers, and information, and situations.

I will remember the promises of God and carry on...even into the unknown.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Something Witty

Here I am saying something witty about how even in the trials of life there is humor, and there is humor in the mundane too.


You know what? I kinda had a tough day. The hits keep coming. There is no room or time to stop and breathe, because we still have to focus on all the normal stuff, and the super special stuff going on, like school, teaching, working, and weddings.


Tonight my son is performing in a murder mystery dinner theatre production that he wrote himself.

And I won't be there.
Neither will his father.
Technically it is a youth event, but Aaron ahd a gig and I have a rehearsal.

It's weird.
It's his debut as a writer.


But today I am thankful:
I am thankful for good friends.
I am thankful for carne asada.
And I am thankful for mercy. And grace...yep.



Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Homework Music

Music and homework, like peanut butter and jelly, or for those with allergies um, whatever you put together on bread. Which is funny I couldn't think of anything since I actually am allergic to peanuts now. Go figure.
Back to the subject, playing music while doing homework is a pretty standard thing. In 8th grade I did a study for a science fair that tested kids for spelling tests with them studying while listening to different types of music, classical, medium beat pop and hard rock/metal I think. It was a long time ago. I do remember the classical music listeners did in fact perform better on the tests.

My son's classes have changed this year. Our school, like many others is going more virtual, texts on line as well as whole courses, so he is sitting at the computer even more this year. I keep walking by and seeing YouTube up;
"Spencer, that is not schoolwork"
"I am waiting for it to load so I am listening to music"
What are you listening to?

"ThePianoGuys"

Have you heard them? Amazing music with piano and cello mostly.
Star Wars, excuse me, Cello Wars:



Here is an amazing Carol of the Bells!


And the only version of "Let it Go" my son will listen to:



I love my kid for so many reasons...this is just one more

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Life In These Hills

I have a daughter getting married, and due to his job the timing had to be quick before he was moved to a new location. So the wedding will be before the end of the year, SURPRISE.

This is on top of everything else in our life being turned upside down.

Some of this long tail involves other people and their lives, so I need to be vague to protect privacy, but I will try and sum it up for you three readers out there.

Our main source of income has hit an economic difficulty due to some issues (privacy).
Because of this our pay was drastically reduced, drastically.
At the same time gigs have also slowed way down, there is an ebb and flow to gigs, but overall they are fewer from a few years ago.
Our landlords also hit some financially issues and sold the house we were living in.
This coincided with us losing income. This is both good and bad, on the one hand we had to move out of a home we would longer be able to afford, but on the other hand, we didn't have an income high enough, nor the chunk of money needed for moving into a new place.
During this same time I was going to start working in the office of my Bowen Therapy instructors as a Bowen therapist with them, but long story short, that fell through. We still have a good relationship and she is trying to help me set up and work, it was a logistics issue

All the while we have been listening for God's word in all this. We feel like maybe we are supposed to be somewhere else. We don't know where and we don't know when but we are trying to stay open about it. Many people do not want us to go. They see the value of Aaron and his talents, we have dear friends...it's nice to be loved, but it doesn't change the fact that perhaps we are supposed to be elsewhere.

So far every door that would allow us to stay here has been shut. Not slammed in our faces, but gently closed with a not now, or no thank you.

We are living in the downstairs /slightly basementy part of a friends home. It's almost like having an apartment inside their house. They are wonderful people and this is such a blessing. We finally have great internet access, but now we are in a black hole with our cell phones...I guess we just traded those off.

So, I am grateful. So very thankful for the love and support and outright help of those here. I am trying to stay stress free, I know God has my back, I know He will guide us to what is next and what is right for us.

One daughter married, graduating soon from college and they will move away to start their lives somewhere farther way. Another daughter getting married and moving possibly across the world for a time (exciting and sad at the same time). Spencer is at an age that it would be hard to just move away from his amazing network of really great friends. These kids are really great kids. He is also in a great school/ISP charter.  It is not our desire to just uproot him, but I know God's plans are best.

Like I said, everything up in the air, uprooted, flipped over...

And amazingly, I am very calm.


Monday, November 3, 2014

About That Village

If you didn't read "yesterday's" post about my daughter's bridal shower, I mentioned how it took a village to throw it in less than two weeks.

There is a bigger village out there that helped me raise this kid, and her twin sister.

A very long time ago, even though I haven't aged a bit, I was a young woman who had a set of twins. At the very start it took extra hands to care for them, soothe them, rock them, care for them. It was a busy time of life learning how to care for not only a first child, but the 2nd as well all at once.

Not too long after this early time I became a single mom. The village of help grew.


I know that without a network of family and really good friends that stepped in and assisted that life would have been really terrible. Surrounded by people who serve each other, I was able to make it through, finished college, held down jobs, and still have time with my kids.

Now twin A has been married for over a year, and twin B will be married before the end of this year.
They have been adults awhile now, and live in their own apartments and take care of themselves, and now both will have their own families. I think the village needs to give themselves a pat on the back!
I pray the servanthood shown to us over those years will show up in their lives to help others.
 I feel it already has.

A big thank you to all that helped us over the years, especially those single years.
The journey was not always easy, but the company was always great.

Took a Village Shower

Today (Sunday) was my daughter's bridal shower. I know it's Monday, but I wasn't home all day so let's all pretend this was posted yesterday, shall we?

My daughter is not a typical girly girl. Oh, she likes fashion and some things, but she can act like one of the boys, and often sounds like some of them (siiigh). But I love her.

She is shocking our socks off with a very girly color palette and wedding plans.

When we first spoke to her about a wedding shower she flat out said No!
After some figuring out why she didn't want one, we convinced her we could pull off one she would like.
We did a "Breakfast at Tiffany's" slant to the party. She loves Tiffany blue, we had tiny tiaras and sunglasses for all. We served brunch, including some Jenelle Favorites, spam, and "church jello", you know the kind. Jello salad always shows up at church functions, and she loves some of them. She draws the line at cottage cheese or veggies being involved.

So far this sounds pretty typical I am sure, this is where it differs. Instead of shower games we played a game called Five Crowns. It is a card game with elements of rummy. Because of the size of the group we split up in groups of 4 and then played Bunco style. For those that have never played Bunco, you switch tables depending if you won or lost the hand. This let everyone move around the room and mingle naturally with everyone else. It was a total success. The game is easy enough to teach new people with a little coaching, we just made sure when we started that there were experienced players at each table.
This made Jenelle super happy.

We have a family friend that attended the shower and played a prank on Jenelle. She bought a "flannel gown" and wrapped it up beautifully. Some of us knew ahead of time so we were ready to oo and aah and make comments along the line of "that's perfect for the honeymoon". My daughter was so polite, and simply thanked her for it, until we all giggled. It's nice to know I did something right in her upbringing. We all had a good laugh. She followed up the flannel with some perfectly picked "woowoo" items.

All in all, it was a delightful day. My daughter Alyssa did a great job decorating and with invitations and getting this together in less than 2 weeks. Yes, that quickly. My friend Nancy stepped up to the plate and helped us with food, she's cool like that. Another friend stepped up to donate her house, even though she is terrible ill with an ailment (non contagious), and another came and cleaned that house for the shower because she knew I had to sing that morning on worship team. It's nice to be surrounded by people that know how to serve each other, to make something happen, and pour love onto someone.

I am proud of them and treasure all of these relationships very deeply.



Saturday, November 1, 2014

November First, Again

Hey it's NaBloPoMo again...yaaay........................


Except, I am exhausted right now from stuff going on in my life, and the thought of FORCING myself to return to public writing for the next 30 days just doesn't seem like a good idea.
I could be wrong.
It happens.
A lot.

So for today I offer you this:


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Keep Your Comments To Yourself

Our entire life has gotten turned upside down in the last month. And I mean ENTIRE.

So while I am packing and sending out resumes for my husband and figuring out what gets sold and what gets put into storage I saw this...and frankly, if this was observed by a lot of people, including myself, I think the world would be a nicer place to live.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

1st Day of the Tenth Grade

Last day 9th grade                                                                 First day 10th grade
 We are  little confused by the height shown in these photos. Must be the shoes and length of hair making him seem taller in the first photo. He is taller now, without a doubt. And as you can see he is also broader, and more manly.

Time marches on, and as long as I can keep it off my face, then that's okay.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

New Blog Title?

I think I should change the name of my blog to something more fitting to how I feel lately.
Like for instance;
Adventures of Fat Girl
or
The Plump One
or
Living In the Fat Lane

I especially like that one, and it is mine, I am totally trademarking it right here right now.


I never set out to be a fat person.
I never looked at myself in the mirror and said, "You know what I need? A layer, or two, of insulation." Nope.

Some people need help with their eyesight, so they wear glasses.
Some people need help with hearing, so they have hearing aids.
And some people gain weight just thinking about ice cream, and they get fat.

I suppose that last line should say something inspirational, like "AND THEY WORK OUT MORE, AND EAT LESS THAN THE AVERAGE PERSON SO THEY CAN MAINTAIN AN AVERAGE WEIGHT."
But it doesn't.

God made some really amazing foods in the world. Seriously. And man made some pretty awful for your body chemicals and flavor enhancers and all sorts of other things that have led to problems. I was a perfect storm of too many antibiotics, artificial sweeteners, and other factors. Yep, a mess.

I have joined countless groups on both sides of the coin. Weight loss, and body acceptance. I am a walking confliction, which is a totally made up word by yours truly.I want to speak life into people beating themselves up about their bodies. I want to tell them how wonderful and beautiful they are! You were designed and lovingly created, and you are your worst enemy. Get over your {insert body part here} and live your life! And then I look into the mirror and that flapping skin on my upper arms and shout, "When the heck did that happen! " It's true, I yelled it in a thrift store dressing room this weekend on a trip with friends. So unimpressed with my upper arms right now.

SO this starts a new determination, start over, start fresh, you can get those pounds back off, you know how, you have the products/meal plan/know-how...YOU CAN DO THIS.
But then there is ice cream.
Thank you Lord for ice cream.

I also have a wedding to attend in 8 weeks. A big family wedding.
Because of recent weight gain (all my own fault) I don't have a thing to wear. You would think this is enough motivation too.
But then there is {insert yummy food here}.

There is also the total and complete lack of desire to work out currently. I KNOW! I know it would help me feel better. I know it would tone things up (are you listening upper arms!?) and burn calories. Those tricky little suckers that demand balance or else!

The last several month have contained some stressful things for me, that all showed up on my body. I feel like adding one more thing right now (weight loss) would send me over the crazy edge. But I also know that if I just keep trying and make better choices, the stress might stop showing up on my middle and things will improve.

What will I choose? I guess you will just have to wait and see.

Monday, June 16, 2014

10,000 Hours

 "They" say it takes 10,000 hours of practice to master something.
I don't know who "they" are, but it is a fair assessment.

My husband is truly gifted, a wonder, and has "mastered" several instruments and various musical abilities and styles. He knows he can be better, and is always looking for the time to put in even more work to be so.
Have you ever taken music lessons?  Do you remember what it took to plunk out Mary Had A Little Lamb? Did you stick with it, or quit? We all have gifts, and talents, and we all need t o make a living in this world too. My husband donates, yes, donates as in for free, HOURS of time to school projects, church projects/ministry, and discounts heavily while trying to help charities and other causes he believes in.
But we still have bills to pay and food to purchase.

Please consider the following. (Taken from FaceBook, original source unknown, sorry)
 We do not live a frivolous life. Our life may look different than yours, and certainly different than someone pulling 9-5 everyday. But we put in as many hours of work, if not more.
I am not trying to whine, or complain. This is just a reminder, it is more than just a couple hours at a gig.
It is dedication and hours in the making.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Hitting Your Knees Hurts Sometimes

 I was accused of not trusting someone recently.

I also accused an entirely different person(s) of not trusting me. 

I decided in light f these conversations that a word study was necessary.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/trust 

: belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective, etc.

Full Definition of TRUST

1
a :  assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something
b :  one in which confidence is placed
2
a :  dependence on something future or contingent :  hope
b :  reliance on future payment for property (as merchandise) delivered :  credit trust
>
3
a :  a property interest held by one person for the benefit of another
b :  a combination of firms or corporations formed by a legal agreement; especially :  one that reduces or threatens to reduce competition
4
archaic :  trustworthiness
5
a (1) :  a charge or duty imposed in faith or confidence or as a condition of some relationship (2) :  something committed or entrusted to one to be used or cared for in the interest of another
b :  responsible charge or office
c :  care, custody trust
>
in trust
:  in the care or possession of a trustee
 
 
Considering the circumstances I still hold to the belief that the person(s) I spoke of , due to their choice of words and actions, in fact do not trust me.
 
As for the accusation that I do not trust someone else.
Interestingly enough I do trust them, a lot. I know their character, I know them.I do trust them, but apparently in something I spoke or my own actions they do not feel trusted.
Here in lies a big problem.
I know those other persons don't trust me, they said so. I would like to point out that without detail or gossip I unfortunately was deemed guilty by vague association quite some time ago regarding something. The relationship, although proven innocent, has never fully recovered. I , for a long time, tried to prove I was faithful to this person(s) and tried my best to be all they expected, and then I got tired, because nothing was ever enough, nothing was ever good enough. I was never false, I was never brown nosing, or kissing up...I hate that stuff. I was simple honest. Which should have been enough....Enough about that,
but someone I do trust says that I don't.
 
What am I doing wrong? 
This is serious.
The above may be the book definition, but it doesn't matter. The true definition lies within the person receiving the trust. 
What does trust look like to you?
 
 
This person would love it if I never asked , "why?" again.
Which is hard for my personality type.
I like explanation. 
There are other things, but lets just stop there.
This circles back to pride.
Did you see that coming?
 
  Why do I need to know the answer? Why do I need to need to know? To evaluate the situation and come up with my own conclusion? To have all the facts? To have a an answer that is fully suitable for the question or action requested?
Yes, yes and yes.
Pride.
Why is it hard to simple complete a task or answer a question without this knowledge?
For one, I want clarity. Someone speaks, and if I hear the possibility of more than one interpretation then I want to know which they meant before proceeding. Many of you would agree this is good. 
What if the clarity is so you don't get it wrong? So you don't fail?
Still good? Or are we crossing over now....
This can be helped in speaking the same language as someone else, but not solved. Example:
I am thankful to understand and be between speaking styles in those personality tests, this means I have a easier time understanding more people. My husband and I for a time had the same boss in a way. They were not always stellar at understanding each other, but thankfully I could understand them both. This saved all of us trouble.
  Now was that statement pride or fact?
It was fact, that is what happened. I am thankful for the opportunity to help out in what could have been some sticky situations. If I wasn't there, or couldn't understand, life would have gone on, and eventually (hopefully) things would have worked out.
I struggle with this, clarity, because I see it as avoiding possible confusion and problems, when others see it (asking questions for clarity) as mis-trust.

But this person, who means a great deal to me, sees questioning as a lack of trust.

What does the Bible say?

Proverbs 3:4-7

New International Version (NIV)
Then you will win favor and a good name
    in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.[a]
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
    fear the Lord and shun evil.
 
Yes, this is about trusting God...but look at what it says is trusting Him...SUBMIT.
I know some of you shuddered right there.
 
 What is the worldly definition of submit:

a :  to yield to governance or authority
b :  to subject to a condition, treatment, or operation submitted
to analysis> 
a :  to yield oneself to the authority or will of another :  surrender
b :  to permit oneself to be subjected to something submit
to surgery>
2
:  to defer to or consent to abide by the opinion or authority of another 
 
If you have a boss, and you want them to trust you...submit to their authority.
This doesn't mean being nothing and having no opinions or say. But it does mean that they have the final say, and to be cautious when giving ones opinion, or asking questions. 
Are they open to questions or opinions? No? Then leave it alone.

So again about pride.
If we feel we know better, or are right, or have a better solution, or a better way...pride.
If we are so convinced of all these things, how in the world can we submit?
Think this doesn't apply to friendships? Think again.
I am not suggesting that you submit to all a friend says or does, or to every friend you have. I am merely suggesting, to myself as well as the three of you that read this, that you pause, consider. Are you always the dominant, the right, to one who knows? I am learning this right along with you.
What does love look like to that friend?
Is it time? Gifts? Listening to them? 
What does trust look like?
Is it not questioning or giving an opinion every time? Is it just saying "okay"? 
If you really trust them then what is the harm. If you don't trust them evaluate why? Some people can not be trusted, I get it. This discussion started because someone I do trust thinks that I don't, and I need to change so that can change.


Proverbs 16:18
Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. 
Proverbs 13:10
Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.
Proverbs 11:2
When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.
 
 

 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Whilst Waiting

It's funny, we have an entire list of things that will happen as soon as our tax return arrives.
Go to the dentist, pay of a personal debt, get the car fixed...and buy some unmentionables...things like that.
Along with this usual list is get fingerprints taken.
I need a new business license for my county and this is on the list of requirements for my specific line of work. But it is on that list. And things are on hold until that is completed. I can't set up my practice until those items are checked off.
Waiting is hard.

Biblically speaking we are ridiculously demanding people with an instant gratification problem.
How long did Abraham wait for a son? He was really old.
How long did the people of God wait in the desert, although be it their own fault? 40 years?
That's a long time.

I have a lot of ducks lined up waiting...WHEN we get this refund, THEN this and that will happen, and then WHEN my daughter moves back out this summer and I can have that room back THEN this and that will happen.
It isn't like we don't have a busy schedule or a lot of spare time simply because I am waiting for these things to happen...just my practice is on hold, which means my income is on hold which feels like...

A life on hold.


That's okay.
I can work on other stuff in the mean time, like self control.

Monday, June 2, 2014

In Light Of Recent Events

It is hard to take a good long long look at yourself, isn't it?
You may look in the mirror and tear yourself apart for the tiniest of things. Things no one else truly notices but you. You may also have a hard time hearing truth about yourself, looking inside. I know I do.
It just shows me one more way I have failed.
Utterly and completely failed once again to be perfect.

Oh perfection, you may deny you try for it, but how are you really when something "goes wrong"? Can you embrace it as a learning experience? Do you relish the chance to learn and grow? Or perhaps you slough it off and move on? No? Maybe you get mad at yourself or others, or beat yourself up for not getting it right....sound familiar?
I have been told it is a matter of pride.
Yes, pride.
I wonder about that. I can see when you are upset something isn't the way you want it, that's pride. I can see it when you want things done your way, that is clearly pride, but when you failed once more? It doesn't feel like pride, it seems like a big ol reminder of what I am not. A nice slap in the face ...oh wait, that is pride. Expecting to be better than human...expecting to be like our creator, perfect.

That hurts.

It isn't the kind of pride that prances around with ones nose in the air making sure the "little people" know you are amazing...nope. It is subtle and sneaky, and whispers lies into your ears that you deserve things to be right, and your way, and the way you expected and "perfect".

Yep. I have a lot of work to do. Somewhere between I am nothing, a worthless scrap of a person and I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me is the truth.

Have you ever read that whole verse?

Philippians 4:12-14

New International Version (NIV)
12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
14 Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles.

So, it isn't about simply getting things done because we have Christ and His strength, it is about being content not matter the situation or circumstances. 
It isn't about the American dream or prosperity.
It isn't about being perfect.

It is about being content.
So this or that didn't work out, and this or that failed.
That's okay...because all things work together for good.
Have you read that entire verse in context?

Romans 8:27-29

New International Version (NIV)
27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.
28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

So I must ask myself, did I seek Him in this or that? What was the purpose? Was I serving Him or serving self? Was I listening? Obeying? Doing the will of the Father or just doing my own thing and expecting blessing. Oh, that is surely pride right there.  

All this to say that I am on a journey to get rid of pride.
It is ugly and a destroyer, and while I do live in grace and mercy from the Father, I would like to continue to go for the fruit of the Spirit instead...

Galatians 5:19-24

New International Version (NIV)
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 
Self control is on the table too currently.
More on that another day.

 

Saturday, May 31, 2014

She Has A Losing Point...

Kristen over at We Are That Family has always inspired me. She is fresh and real. She tells you when things gets messy, and she speaks of the hope and growth that comes from it. She also started a non profit helping tragically pregnant teens in Africa, which now has two homes operating. Mercy House is such a wonderful God given dream.

Today she wrote of WHY we shouldn't always award kids for just being alive. Seriously.
I have been saying it for years, but she has a fresh and honest reason, involving her youngest child. And it is a beautiful example of the truth of why losing is okay too.

Check it out.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Last Day 9th Grade , New Heights

My youngest is now officially a sopphmore.
Wow. I am not going to lament about my baby growing up or any of that. I am simply not the type. I understand that for others, and I pat their back and understand, I do. It just isn't where I live. I have children, I expect them to grow up and become amazing adults. They were designed to do so. I am happy to see the growth and potential. Yes, there is heart ache and hopes that are not fulfilled, but that is okay too. This is real life, messy and fun and a whole lot of unknowns.

Why would we want it to be different?

Here is a photo of the first day of 9th grade.
Here is the last day...
The part that always gets me is the GROWTH. Same book case, same standing spot, love it.



Sunday, May 4, 2014

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Alive

Still alive!
My house is half clean after the avalanche of stuff that came home after Into The Woods closed. I washed all the costumes, and I am cleaning a few more delicate ones soon. I had photos taken and will be sharing the costuming soon.

The kids really stepped it up in the final week, and they brought it all for the performances. They did a great job.
And considering we are a small school, with a small budget they did better than great!

Having parent and friend volunteers made the difference. It all just fell into place and amazing things happened.

Hopefully next year's classes and perfomances will be just as amazing.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

In Practice

Yesterday I brought up how God works in the little things. I said I would clean one area yesterday, didn't happen.
THEN I SPILLED CHICKEN BROTH ALL OVER THE 2nd FRIDGE.

So now I cleaned out something.

See how that worked?
As frustrated as I am at myself for what was truly a dumb mistake with a container of home made bone broth, well, God used it to help me keep my word.

So thank you Lord for the broth mess.


Cracked

After I wrote yesterday about how it was going not talking poorly about myself I read THIS blog post.
Jennifer Lee Dukes has covered all her mirrors for Lent, and yesterday she had a guest post writer. It really got into the heart of the matter, and there is a "mysteriously" broken mirror involved.
God knows our struggles. He is there, helping to guide us away from what damages, and towards His love.

Ever have something happen like that?
Perhaps dropping something to the floor before consuming it, knowing it was bad for you?
Tripping over, or knocking over the Bible study book you should be reading, or perhaps seeing a friends name randomly that needs a call.

He is in the little things.
He loves us that much.

They aren't coincidences,
they are Godincidences.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

About That

I am doing alright not eating sugar.  Just so you know.
I am doing alright not talking poorly about myself. I often look in the mirror, zero in on something, and then stop myself, I am not perfect, but I am doing so much better! 

As for cleaning out a bag of stuff a day? So not happening.
And I am laughing right now. Sure, I am bummed that I haven't done this an iota, however, it was too much right this moment. I am so very busy making costumes and props, and facing taxes. This was just hopeful thinking that I could squeeze this in as well.

A friend on Sunday told me to just try and pray for a little bit of time to open up. SO I am not giving up completely. And frankly, taxes will be over soon, and then the play will be done, and then, THEN, I can face other bigger projects. In the meantime I will still try to hit an area here and there. For example, perhaps tomorrow I will clean out , well, I don't know. I just made a to-do list in my head for tomorrow. It isn't looking positive for time to clean something out. I will clean off the top of the dryer. How about that? Empty stain spray and buttons. It's a small task, maybe I can get that done.

So, for those of you fasting, or perhaps observing Lent, how are you doing?
 Any revelations? Any victories?
I pray so.



Thursday, March 6, 2014

Stupid Sugar

Here we go again.
No sugar for 40 days. I should be more specific, no refined sugar, no desserts, things like that. I am not cutting out every speck that may be inside an otherwise okay food choice.

But it is hard just the same.
I am sitting here chewing gum, trying not to think about it,
I WANT IT ALREADY.

I was so thankful when I opened up "Keeper Of The Home" and READ THIS.

Goodness me, thank you so much for wrting it.
HOW TO DEAL WITH SUGAR CRAVINGS.
Perfect.
With fabulous links and reasons why we shouldn't eat the stuff in the first place.

God knew I would need a boost of encouragement, some good information and support. He knew, and I am grateful.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

More Than a Test Score.

This post has some serious truth about what some of our kids in schools are going through. She is a teacher, she sees it first hand. I do too. Not to the extreme she may be talking about, but even in this little school, it happens.


Right now, in a class I help out in, a young man  is living as though he is emancipated. It's complicated, and it is sad, and he is struggling. He will be with us an extra semester due to the things that happened in the last two years. I don't know all the details, I don't know what home was like, all I know is there is a young man in need of a father figure that supports, encourages and says, it may be hard, but you are worthy to get it done.  He isn't the first one we have seen in recent years.For a few hours a week he can get those words, he can see someone cares and maybe he will absorb it as truth and step up and have a good life, not one based on lies and excuses.

Please read it, pray for these kids. Thanks.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A Whole Lot Less

Yesterday I laid it out there, and I must say, I feel better for doing it, because too many people aren't real enough with each other.
So starting Wednesday in addition to the no more sugar and stopping bad talking myself I am going to participate in THIS.

What an amazing idea.
So simple, just pick one area a day, just an area, not a whole room, and clean it out. PURGE! Yes.
I will also do a deep clean too, I have noticed a need lately for a serious spring cleaning.

Will you join us? One bag a day(any size). Sell it, donate it, or trash what is truly trash, but get it cleared out of your space.

She even has a FaceBook support group. I won't be joining that because frankly, I don't have the time for one more thing, but if you need support to face your stuff PLEASE join in!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Here I Am

This sums up a lot for me.

Granted, I didn't have another child, or move across country this year, but I did fall off the good eating train, and we certainly felt the sting of lost income.

I don't know about you, but I really, truly appreciate when bloggers come clean about their real lives. The kids throw tantrums, they struggle with self doubt or the house is a mess, or they still get skin blemishes, GASP~! Whatever it is, it can help someone else feel like they aren't alone, or a misfit.

SO HERE IT IS.
I have gained some weight back, not all of it, but I gained, I did not finish losing it all. And I am very upset about it. And interestingly, every time I set forth to lose it again I ended up adding more. I could never quite re-establish my commitment. Processed foods, sweets, and white carbs are highly addictive. Read the article above, she says some brilliant things about our guilt process, and why these foods combined with guilt keep us down, or heavily addicted actually.

Because I have gained back some weight, I stopped really "doing the business" side of Isagenix. The products are still amazing, AMAZING, but only if you use them. Slow down your business..the money slows down too, and then we can't afford to purchase them. I have Aaron still on many, and I am still on the one that soothes the womanly hormones, we will always find a way to keep that one around, seriously. It really calms down the crazies for me.  Aaron is still off all his diabetes meds, it's just wonderful.  I am not getting the cash flow anymore, due to guilt and embarrassment...

What else?
We struggle financially, all. the. time.
Our income will get a nice boost just to have another source vanish. It is painful, it is humbling, and we shake our heads at what is going on.
We tithe, we give offering too, we have learned to give even when it seems we don't have enough, and until this month we have always made it.

This month we didn't.
Not really sure what we are going to do about it, rent was due 2 days ago.
We will search for ways to improve and move on.

I could start doing the business again, you know, to be able to afford the products, to get back on track and lose the weight and start earning more income for the family again, except I am embarrassed and it looks like the stuff doesn't work, but it does, this was just me, failing again. So now what? Catch 22? I think so.

What I can do is this: I am participating in a 40 day fast with our church, it is lining up with Lent. I am giving up sugar. It is a big deal, it has me wrapped around it's sticky little finger. It pulls me in and keeps me close, stupid addiction. I am also giving up being mean to myself. That's right, I will not make comments regarding my fat, size, looks or anything of that nature for 40 days, (I will try to change the thoughts too). My husband will be thrilled, he hates it when I bash on his wife.

We will slowly get back to better eating using what we have and trying to build up our finances again. I will attempt re-building my business, or look into other ways of bringing in more income for our family. I am building my massage/Bowen therapy clients as well.

That's it. A glimpse of my life out there on the interwebs...
I have a plan, no idea if it will work, but I have it.
How about you?






Friday, February 28, 2014

Where Was This?

I wish this information existed when I went to college, either times.
Want total transparency in a blog?
How's this?
We still are struggling to pay off student loans for degrees in industries (partially our choice) that it does not pay. Does it help to get a job? Maybe. Maybe they are impressed that we finished, or that we are trained, but all in all, it doesn't lead to a lot of money.

This information is crucial for some people to know, BEFORE they get into debt for occupations that may, or may not, benefit from having that expensive education.

I am a great supporter of being educated, of learning new skills, but I don't necessarily think a big fancy degree is always the right choice. I know many jobs require them, being a medical doctor for example, but not everything does.

Pray hard, think upon it, if you can afford it, go for it, but if you need loans to make it through, consider all the factors first.

Being in debt really stinks, and it is hard to move on in life while you owe.




Thursday, February 13, 2014

Never Fully Gone

A church that was once home for us, where my husband was a worship pastor and restored his faith in ministry work.... lost it's shepard last night.
We were no longer there when he came on board, but we did get to meet him, and hear him occasionally, but he loved that church and those people that are so important to us, and he made a difference in that community. He died last night after a struggle with the H1N1 'swine flu".

My dear friend, and also former Mountain View staff/attendee posted this on her face book:
Lori Doozleberry*:
"I try really hard not to bash my faith over the tops of people's heads. I want to love people the way my Savior loved them. But today I'm begging you--whether you go to church or don't, whether you believe in God or don't, whether you're Catholic or Mormon or Buddhist or Agnostic or an Evangelic Christian--please listen to this. Please. It was Pastor Charlie's last sermon. I had the privilege of being there to hear it. WE ALL DIE and you can't hide from that. DEATH WILL CATCH YOU. If I mean anything to you, anything at all, please listen to this. http://www.mvccramona.org/sermons/?sermon_id=297 (Click on Eternity)"
 
 
 
I urge you to click and listen.
Death finds everyone.
It's just the way it is.








*Not her real name

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

So, about that weather...

Since I last wrote it has rained, and rained, and rained....
This is good of course, but not perfect.
It rained so much all at once that it created a  lot of run off, and not necessarily filling up wells and springs underground. The water table and all that. Also, the rain coming now is warm, so warm that it won't snow in the upper altitude, and will probably melt the snowpack that now exists from last weeks storms.

I am not saying this storm was bad...it was amazing, I am so thankful,
but we are still in drought conditions.
With out the slow melting deep snowpack there still isn't the "right" amount of water later for the rest of the year. It's complicated I guess.

Still praying for more rain, and a colder storm to snow up on those hills of ours.

Unfortunately trees are blooming early too.
Hopefully my fruit trees don't bloom now only to wither and die due to a freeze.
I am sure farmers all over the area are praying the same thing.

So should you if you like fruit.

I am tempted to plant lettuce and other crops now, but the weather is so wishy washy I don't want to waste the money and seeds.
Perhaps if I had a greenhouse. I have seen amazing ones built from re-claimed windows. Others made from simple PVC and clear plastic.

So many projects, so little time.




Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Weather, Yep, Seriously

I am going to take a moment to talk about the weather. I have read many a blog in the last few days regarding the weather and the extreme things going on. Mostly my blog friends in other parts of the country  have had it with snow and ice.
I can't blame them for their lamenting, this year has been brutal there.

Our weather, on the other hand, has been mild, and for the month of January was pretty much spring temperatures. 65 to 75 degrees? 50 at night? What is this? January 14th in southern California was 85, I know because I was there enjoying it. And 53 days without precipitation? Wow, unheard of in my area during these months.

And there in lies the problem.

We broke that dry spell with a cold front. The cold front allows the trapped moisture to fall...yay! Temps are almost normal right now, still a little warm during the day but dropping at night. We had some rain, and snow up the hill ...
but not enough. We are at perhaps 10-20% of the rainfall/snowpack needed. We need another 21+ inches by June. This is drought.

Perhaps this doesn't seem like an issue...but let's take a look at how it affects everyone.
Many people are selling off, or are talking about selling off, their livestock. They simply can't afford the water  it would take to keep the herds alive. This will drive say beef prices down temporarily as the market gets flooded with a surplus, but then, there will be a shortage, and the price will skyrocket. Did you know where a very large percentage of rice is grown? I will give you hint: It's northern California, and we have a serious drought, so guess what prices will go up at well? This is just a glimpse.

I know many of you might be freezing and buried in several feet of snow, but pray for this side of the US. We need rain and snow, and soon.


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Someone's Birthday

I found this post sweet and honest and beautiful.
It's about the connections we create to those around us.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Banned Foods

Ten foods banned in other countries...but we eat all the time.
Check the list for yourself. contemplate what you think about each of them.
We get sicker and fatter all the time, and our food sources keep getting farther and farther from true food.
Is there a link between these factors?

Yes. I think there is.


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Into

My husband teaches voice at our son's school. It's a flexible school combining home study with some core classroom time and enrichment classes. It's the best combination for us.
Our son has been involved in the drama productions, and we have slowly gotten more and more involved as time went on.
This spring we are doing Into The Woods. I will assist in vocal training, assist the director and take on costume and prop master. Which I love.

My son auditioned, and found himself in the role of the Baker. This is exciting.

We are editing, for those that have seen the show, so that it is more appropriate for middle and high school, but we are not cutting the message to be careful of what you wish for.

It seems a huge undertaking. I look at the amazing costuming of those before us, hoping we can pull off some brilliance of our own.

It is nice to be involved with such things again.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A Little Break

Through Christmas miracles and family love this happened last week:
My family is amazing.
We ate healthy wonderful food that we brought into the parks. My niece and nephew in law to be have annual passes so they  navigated us to get the best full day possible.

It was worth the overnight drive home to get my daughter to work the next morning.

I just want to add that the Cars land car ride is amazing. Super fun.


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Best Intentions

I had the best intentions to write more this year, to find my voice again, to really jump back in and fill pages with something that maybe, just maybe someone else would enjoy reading. Perhaps help a person or two, perhaps make someone laugh, or even just nod in agreement.

And then life got back into full swing.

It wasn't just writing that shoved aside, it's everything.

sssshhhhh   I still have Christmas decorations up....yep, I do.
The wrapping paper station got all put away, but only because I was forced to clean that area so my daughter could temporarily (6 months) move back in. So my house has her stuff scattered about, Christmas still up, and life's general messes all over, because I simply haven't been home to tend to it.

I feel like all I have mostly done in this house for the last week is sleep here, and not even well on the night's my poor husband was up coughing and hacking.

I am not complaining. We live an interesting life.
We are always striving to do what we are called to do, and that simply equats to some busy times.

Sadly this was a lot of unpaid busy time.

So on top of everything else I am now looking at our finances and wondering what's next?


Ever feel like that? Just wondering what's next? Sometimes I know it is when the burdens are too heavy, and we question what's next like we couldn't take on another thing. Sometimes it is good stuff, and sometimes, like now for us, we just wonder where, what and when. Our where? currently isn't a big where, we know we are supposed to be here. We would also like to stay put for another 3.5 years so Spencer can graduate from his current school, if his current school stays a valuable and viable option.

As for other best intentions, I have gained weight. Yep, gained. My body is working super strongly against me and the weight is a result. Poor choices? Sure. Not working out? Yep. But the cravings and the caloric math don't make sense. SO I am re-joining the bandwagon again. I KNOW THAT I KNOW THAT I KNOW Isagenix works. I just need to get back on the products and stay within the guidelines of healthy eating. My body and my wardrobe will thank me.

So there is a little recap.
See you tomorrow.