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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Ponderings...

News came pouring in all day yesterday. My children played around the house oblivious to the tragedy that was unfolding. My heart was being ripped to shreds along with all the other people reeling in the news of such gut wrenching actions from a sick and hurting person. We stayed home all day and I hugged my children tight and thanked God for their presence. 


We aren't promised a tomorrow, so as I am so often reminded how we need to make use of our days. Filling one anthers love cup to overflowing by stopping, listening, taking time to connect, to love.


Refueling ourselves with our Sustainer so we can pour out to others. So thankful I am for these people in my lives. 

 

We have been so sick this past week, I was so glad to get outside and breath deep the fresh air that is found outside our four walls. I have cleaned, washed and sanitized everything in hopes that Jon doesn't come down with what we have had. Again, thankful we are all healthy. And active. And together.



This past week has stretched me. Our kids have had cabin fever and I too have snapped one to many times. Hurt feelings, tears, loud voices, repentance, apologies and forgiveness. It is what makes a family strong. Strong enough to weather the storms when they hit. And they will.


We are saddened and we grieve. We think "what ifs" and cry all over again.


We hold tight the ones who are with us. Fearful of letting them go...


But if we take a deep breath and release it all to the One who has us in the palm of his hand, we are free. Free to walk in His footsteps of the path that he has made just for us. Lord may we have the faith to Believe in the plan you have for us. May we let go and trust in You.



Friday, November 16, 2012

Bare and Exposed...

The kids and I were running errands this morning and took the long way home in hopes of my little one falling asleep in the car. Nap time is just so much easier when he falls asleep there instead of the fighting and constant monitoring that goes into keeping him in bed. The time we have in the car we usually drive a series of backroads that are filled with beautiful barns, open fields and animals. Today was no different as we listened to the radio and watched the peaceful scenery go by.

Not on our drive today - this is the Blue Ridge Parkway - also a beautiful drive in NC!

We are blessed to live in NC where it is just so beautiful. We went up and down rolling hills filled with trees that are shedding their leaves. Most of the leaves are on the ground now but there is still a smattering of trees where the leaves just hang on. They are brown and crispy, serving no real purpose to their host tree. Dead. God used these dead leaves to speak words of life to me.



Just yesterday I was huddled around a table with a group of mom's studying Psalms 51 where it talks about King David coming clean to God about his sin with Bathsheba. After he was confronted by Nathan about his affair and sinful behavior, he took full responsibility for his actions and repented to God for his behavior. It showed how God desires a broken and contrite heart, and even through that brokenness, you can speak praises to God.



I know my family joins the ranks with many other people who are concerned over finances this holiday season. We are all strung tight and spread thin. With the flurry of social media we notice people doing so many wonderful things and I just wish I could just be happy for them instead of wishing I could do the same. Enter bad attitude. People post all of their thankful posts and yes, we are supposed to have an attitude of thankfulness but we have a part in ourselves that long for what we can't have. Ugh. I don't like that feeling. There is always a flip side to what some are thankful for. One woman posts about being thankful for a date night with her husband while I haven't seen one of those in years (well, if you don't count birthing babies during the evening! ;) I could go on and on about what one is thankful for another is grieving but I know you all know what I am talking about.

Brings me back to those leaves. You know the dead ones? While they can be good, and beautiful in their own way, they aren't necessary. They are meant to be shed. They are meant to fall off and leave the tree exposed and barren. Broken, bare minimum for healing. Isn't that the attitude that David was speaking of in the Psalms?



How many times do we try to do things in our own strength. Me for one is Queen of saying "oh, if I do A and B, then C will be perfect!" Only for the next week to be giving myself the same ol' pep talk. God desires for us to be broken and contrite. Lay it all open for Him to heal and mold. Ugh... Am I worth it? Will God love me even in my faults? Yes. Our sacrifice is to share His goodness and sing his praises even in the midst of brokenness. Then those buds will form and new life will take over. Those leaves will have fallen away to new growth.

2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!


May we all learn what it is to be broken before God. Let us shed our attitude of self-righteousness before others and all come together and sing His praises in the midst of us being bare before Him. He will fill us with everything good and we will become new creations in Him!





Friday, November 9, 2012

Loving our place.

I have so many thoughts swirling around in my head but my Momma told me if I couldn't say anything nice, not to say anything at all sooooo, I have been deeply processing things here on the homefront. So without further ado, I will just share our goings on around here!

A few weeks ago a special deal came through Living Social for a maze not too close from our home. We had yet to enjoy a corn maze since we have had a baby or new walker so it felt a bit more for us to chew than we were comfortable with. So when this deal came through for a smaller, more entry level maze we knew it was time. That Saturday when we decided to go it was a blustery day before Hurricane Sandy hit. Somehow even through the grey, it was a wonderful day. 



The tractor gave us a hayride through the farm area and all of us were happy.  Dog + tractor = heaven for one toddler boy.


Acres and acres of corn were pulling us in.



What happens when you have a kid who only likes to eat corn? You have one sad boy who doesn't understand that you can't steal all of the corn for yourself.


There were twists and turns and the temps were dropping quickly!



A house divided.


Stinker always gets what he wants!


We got to our first dead end.




And another one...


But we sure had fun working through the turns.






Overcast days always remind me of my birthplace of California. It was a perfect cool fall day.


And finally! Success!




And an ever so scarce family picture. We all do exist!


Back to the barn led to some fun exploring of the pumpkins.







We had so much fun at our smaller scale maze. It was just perfect for us! If anyone local ever thinks to go to Clodbuster Farms in Kernersville, you won't be disappointied!



Happy Weekending!


Sunday, October 7, 2012

Going on a Bear Hunt!

A few weeks ago my friend Tiffany said, "You want to act out Going on a Bear Hunt with me?" I didn't have to think twice and said YES! I have wanted to get together a few families to have a Before Five in a Row co-op of sorts, I just needed a bit of a push from a friend! I invited another friend and voila, a preschool class!

She provided the boys with awesome little binoculars so they could hunt for the bear! The boys were ready for the hunt. (And I have no idea why Jake took of his shirt. Oh yeah, he got soaked by the water fountain. Boys.)



If you haven't read this book to your little ones, run out, buy it then read it! I am sure it will be read over and over and over again!

It goes a little like this:

We're going on a bear hunt, we're gonna catch a big one! What a beautiful day, we're not scared!


 

Uh oh. Grass. Long wavy grass! We can't go over it, we can't go under it. Oh no! We have got to go through it!


Swishy swashy, swishy swashy, swishy swashy!


We're going on a bear hunt, we're gonna catch a big one. What a beautiful day! We're not scared!

Uh oh! A river! A deep cold river!

We can't go over it, we can't go under it. Uh oh! We gotta go through it!

Splash, splosh, splash splosh, splash splosh!




We're going on a bear hunt, we're gonna catch a big one! What a beautiful day! We're not scared!

Uh oh. Mud. Thick oozy mud!

We can't go over it, we can't go under it. Oh no! We gotta go through it!

Squelch squerch! Squelch Squerch! Squelch Squerch!




We're going on a bear hunt, we're gonna catch a big one! What a beautiful day! We're not scared!

Oh uh! A forest. A big dark forest!

We can't go over it, we can't go under it. Oh no! We've got to go through it!

Stumble, trip, stumple trip, stumble trip!


 We're going on a bear hunt, we're gonna catch a big one! What a beautiful day! We're not scared!



Uh oh! A snow storm! A swirling whirling snow storm!


We can't go over it, we can't go over it. Oh no! We have got to go through it!

Hooo wooo,  hoooo wooooo, hoooo wooooo!



We're going on a bear hunt, we're gonna catch a big one! What a beautiful day! We're not scared!

Uh oh. A cave! A narrow gloomy cave!

We can't go over it, we can't go over it. Oh no! We have got to go through it!

 Tip toe, tip toe, tip toe!

What is that! One shiny wet nose, two big furry ears, two big googly eyes! Its a bear!


Quick! Back through the cave!


At this point, the kids were screaming and laughing going back through every activity again to get back to their house.


The bear was chasing them and we couldn't go through all the things fast enough! It was so funny to hear the kids say, tip toe, stumble trip, and squelch squerch as they went backwards towards home.



Swishy swashy, swishy swashy, swishy swashy!


Everyone made it safely home, nice and tucked into their bed. I think I was laughing so hard I forgot to take pictures!

Afterwards, the kids got to hunt around themselves.



The olders thought it was so much fun, they had to give it a go themselves. It was so sweet to see them loving a sweet story too.


Even had their binoculars!


The river.


The bears in waiting. So sweet!


Tip toe, tip toe, tip toe!


Ack! It's a bear!!!



Back through the snowstorm!



It was a cold snow too!


They all made it safely home and tucked into bed.

It was so much fun allowing a book to come to life. I can't wait to do it again! If you are local and are interested in having a Before Five in a Row playdate, let me know and we will work something out! Next on my list is Jesse Bear.

Happy Rowing!