Friday, May 25, 2007

I am so Immature

A couple months ago, my MIL asked if I remembered a couple years ago, when the girls spent a few extra days with them without us. She wanted to do that again. Come on, twist my arm. I guess you can have the kids. (Whoopee!) So Tuesday we met the in-laws in Hays and sent the kids home with them, returning to our home quietly, without the "are we there yet?" whine. My husband talked to his mother the next day and their trip home wasn't as quiet. They ran into a thunderstorm, complete with big lightening, loud thunder, and hail. At one point they had to pull over and got stuck. My FIL had tried to manuever the van a bit too much and got mired in the mud at the side of the road. They had to wait an hour and a half for someone to push them out of the ditch. As a mother, I am sympathetic and concerned for the girls. This is so typical of the men in my life that I feel compelled to laugh. I also feel a little bit like a fifth grader, who wants to laugh behind my hand because it happened to someone besides me. Picture riding in a car with Jo with lightening and thunder crashing above. Jo hates thunder, she hates all loud noises. They are too much competition, I think. She wails at loud noises and covers her ears. The sound of a public, industrial strength toilet is too loud for her. I understand she suggested that they turn around and go back to get out of the storm. I have to laugh at this. It is so very much just like the girl. And I missed the frustration of dealing with her particularly strong will, when trying to get somewhere under less than ideal conditions. I should probably feel bad for the girls and their grandparents. Instead, I miss the girls and will be glad to see them later today but, I have gotten so much done for Bible School this week that I am just feeling pretty good about life. That and the house is pretty neat, no one has trashed it recently.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


On Sabbath, Pastor Joe preached on Romans 12 as part of his series from that chapter. As a side note, it is my absolute favorite chapter in the Bible. I memorized it as a teenager, under duress. I didn't hold that against it though and have come to have a great appreciation for the practical chapter.
We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his[b]faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. (Romans 12: 6-8)

One of the things that stuck out to me was that we cannot use our gifts as excuses for inaction. We are called to love the Lord through our actions in the body, and each part of the body has a vital function. We should encourage our brothers and sisters in Christ to use their gifts, and always be wise stewards of the resources of the church. This is just the financial resources, but the physical resouces as well. If there is a skilled accountant in the church who is good at managing money, he or she would be a good canidate for managing the church finances. At least more so than the person (like me) who hates to balance my personal checkbook and isn't great at it.

I got to thinking about my gifts. It's not that I think I am not gifted, its just that I see many people who have the same gifts I do, and in a greater amount. I work in the church in many capacities, Christian Ed Committee, VBS Co-director, Social Committee, Nursery committee, help with juniors, calendar/newsletter, congregational I am using my gifts. (It is a small church, which like a small town needs everyone to contribute) I just wouldn't say that the things I do couldn't be done by others and maybe better. I would say my gift is willingness. I am willing to be used in whatever capacity is needed. I have energy and a flexible schedule. It is as crowded as anyone else's schedule, it just has few time constraints than working people, at least now when the girls aren't in school.

Monday's episode of 7th Heaven, "Charity Begins at Home", begins with Reverend Camden preaching a sermon encouraging his congregation to use their gifts in service to at least one person, on a personal level. I thought it dovetailed nicely with my musings this week. It is an old episode, rerun on ABC Family each weeknight at 5. It never ceases to amaze me how God puts several hits on the same message before me at the same time. The point of the episode was to show that we should use our gifts in service to others and not just in a global or broad sense but on a personal individual level. My mom would have loved it. She is queen of the personal ministry. Can you take a meal to a lonely person or spend an hour visiting? Can you give a ride to a person who is without transportation. Make a phone call to a person who is having a rough week? Do a load of laundry for someone with a new baby or a broken washer? Take the kids for an afternoon or evening to let some busy parents have a break? Write a short note to someone who has meant something to you? It doesn't have to be a big time committment, it just needs to be something.

Go out and love the Lord through what you do today.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

By Popular Demand

My sister had one complaint about this blog. I don't post often enough for her. I am guessing she is anxious for updates about the girls. I doubt however, that she will read this post for at least a week because she is headed to Florida for a week to pack up her house and move it to Texas, where she and BIL have been living for a couple months, since the Navy transferred him. My mom is going to help her so perhaps prayers for patience would be in order.

I will have to share pictures of Jo's hair cut. She. Cut. Out. Her. Barrettes. Yeah. The only really workable hairstyle is piggy tails. It's pretty bad.
Can you see the short feathery hair on the left side? She was pretty proud of herself until she realized Mama was not so happy.
"Jo, did you cut your hair?!!!" I asked horrified but the hair on the floor and the barrette in the bathroom, hair still clipped in it.

"Yes," she mumbled downcast. "I'm sorry that I did that" Really. Okay, well at least it gave her a career idea. She thinks she wants to be a painter and a barber now. She is really looking forward to preschool because she will get to paint there. Je painted a lot of pictures and Jo is anxious to do so too. I suppose barbers can make a good living. After my conversation about hair stylists today with my sisters, I think I will tell her to do that in Lawrence. It is more expensive than here.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I Won!

Forgive me for the self involved title but I so rarely win anything that I am a little crazy. I stuck by the Wildcats through I can't even tell you how many losing seasons and then football got good. I still am with the purple teams now that they have been struggling. I was always a Royals fan, I vividly remember the '85 series and the twenty plus seasons of drought since then. Seriously. My college roommate is from St. Louis. She is a Cardinal's fan. We had to agree to disagree. I seem to pick the teams that used to be great, or are great but not as great as the more popular team in the group I am with. So when I clicked over to Parent Blogger Network and it said that the winner of the $100 Spa Finder Gift Card was my entry I was so thrilled I can't even tell you. Yea Me! I now will return you to less bragger blogging.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Real Moms Have Messy Rooms

My room is usually a disaster. I watched my kids fall backwards on the bed in their new cowgirl hats and thought what a great picture! After I took it I noticed all the crap on the bed and the closet with the doors waiting to be replaced. Recently my mom, my biggest critic and one of my closest friends, told me that I didn't have a gift for housekeeping. No Joke. She tempered this criticism by telling me I do have a gift for mothering. I am doing something right! I'd rather be a good mother than have a clean house anyday.

"Enter the Real Mom Truths contest! The winner will receive this amazing 4G iPod Nano and Chocolate gift set, plus a link to their post on True Mom Confessions on Mother's Day. Today is the last day to enter. Go here to get info. You can win thisCheck out the true confessions of moms at this site. It'll make you think.

What Makes Me a Mother

They say biology makes a father but it takes a special heart to be a Daddy. Does motherhood work that way. Probably, but not to the same degree. I am a Mama because my three year old said so. My five year old needs to cuddle when her feelings are hurt, she has an owie or she is overcome with joy. Who does she look to then? Her mama. It amazes me that my patience (or lack thereof) was well documented before the kids were born. Shan was always the patient one, but now it seems I have a new reserve for all those annoying kid things. Jo asking the same question over and over again at the top volume she is capable of. BTW that is a loud level. It doesn't matter how you got the kids you have, adoption, foster, medical help or naturally, if you are responsible for these people you are a mother. It is endless hours of fixing food, answering questions, washing laundry and dirty faces. It is worrying, praying, and exhausting. It is the best job and sometimes the worst job in the world.

This is part of the What Makes a Mother contest sponsored by Parent Blogger Network and LightIris

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

WFMW Birthday Edition

When I first heard that Rocks in My Dryer was doing a birthday edition of Works for Me Wednesday, I didn't think I had any good birthday ideas, except get my sister to make the cake because she makes really interesting cakes for the kids birthdays. They are really cool looking and are fun. She makes some odd recipes for the cake part and sometimes they don't seem all that kid friendly. What happened to chocolate and white as kid birthday staples? I digress. As I thought more, I realized that I have a very inexpensive way to get gifts for those parties the kids are invited to. We have a great dollar store in town, Deals. It is a chain I think. When we have to find a gift for a birthday, I take the girls in there. The get to pick out several fun things for the special person and I put them in a gift bag. For younger kids, sometimes the number of gifts is the big deal rather than the money spent, and Deals has some nice things for a dollar a piece. I can usually find some really nice toys and trinkets for between $5 and $10. If the party has a theme, I will try to get gifts around the theme or add a small theme related item to the stash. Last time, Je was invited to a party for a boy in her preschool class that we don't know very well. I think the whole class was invited. One of Je's friends is the boy's aunt (dad was married before) and Je wanted to go see her friend at the party. The day before we made a trip to Deals, and bought a car, ball, an action figure, and a plane kit. I added a book I found based on the movie Cars, the party's theme, and the whole thing was pretty economical yet fun. This is especially good when you don't know the child very well and don't know what would be a great gift, and when you want to be thrifty. It works for me.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

I'm Busy, Busy, Frightfully Busy, You've No Idea What I have to do!

I've learned that I need to get new dressy summer shoes. My feet almost have forgiven me for the shoes I wore on Sunday but not completely. I had to get a leg and foot massage from Shan last night so I could sleep. I wanted one on Sunday night but couldn't summon the energy to go down three sets of stairs to find him and ask. The cell phones weren't handy either to call to him down three flights. I had a day on Sunday. Saturday, too getting ready for Sunday. It is a brief lull now before the ramp up to Bible School next month. Saturday, I got the food and other things ready for lunch at church and Menninger's graduation ceremony. I also had to send food out to the Manhattan group for their Sunday evening get together. I also took the kids to the zoo on Saturday, because they were having a special thing at the hippo exibit. Jo likes hippos. On the way home from the zoo, I got the last of the stuff for Sunday's taco bar at church. We hosted the Manhattan group so I had to plan for an extra 20-25 people. I snuck out of lunch early to make my way downtown to the church we use to host the Menninger Bible Program graduation. This year we had 20 graduates complete the four year course through the Bible. It is quite an accomplishment. So we I got home at five on Sunday I was exhausted. I left the house at nine that morning to get to church so I could get things ready for the lunch, and still teach Sunday school. There were several extra people in our class, including the pastor and his wife who are working in Manhattan right now. I love them and they are great but with all the visitors in the class it was a little bit of pressure. Class, lunch and graduation were all a success. We had so many leftovers that we will do taco lunch again next month, we stuck everything in the freezer. After typing this all I think I need a nap.