Friday, January 31, 2014

Guess What?!?!

Life of Fred is coming out with a Language Arts program!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Granted it is for high school, but I am excited!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, January 23, 2014


It is quite cold this morning.  I padded into the kitchen and grabbed my robe a moment ago and glanced in at my doggie, he is curled up into a cute fur ball, all warm and cozy.  After staring at him for a moment, I was tempted to turn back around, pad down the hallway, and climb back into bed.  Especially since my husband is still asleep and sometime during the night our youngest joined us.  :) They are both so warm and snuggled in right now.  SO SO sweet.

I haven't gotten any closer to my weight goal :( but my knee is getting stronger every day.  Obviously, it still has some swelling in it because I still cannot squat down with my kids on the floor, or to pick something up...which is quite awkward at times :(.  I forgot last week and squatted to help my youngest with a shoe issue and the pain that ripped through my knee made me instantly nauseous.  I have lost my motivation for getting back in shape, I have done some tendus and releves  as well as trying to remember to do the exercises my PT printed off for me to do at home. But I haven't been walking regularly, which I must do if I am cleared to start running on Friday (which I am really, really hoping my doctor will do!).  I need to pick a time of day and stick to it, not leave it until the end of the day after everything else is done.

*sigh*  I guess I had better go make my decaf coffee (if I keep it to a 1 cup minimum and make it weaker than normal, the little bit of caffeine in it doesn't seem to bother me) and start Bible in 90 days for this morning...I am a little behind, but determined.  Hope you guys have an awesome Thursday!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Brokenness and Beauty

There is such profound brokenness when I look around.  Chemo dripping into veins as the minute hand ticks away on the wall, brokenness as I watch others navigate their way through the devastation left in the wake of words spoken in anger, hearts shattering as time marches to day annoyances smacking into you, bills that continue to trickle in…leaving the person gasping with despair.  Tummies empty, orphans alone, couples split apart, shootings and hate filled words...all of it tumbles across the screen as the news caster reports the news from the day in small town America...why?  Why are things so broken?  Why does life have to hurt so much?

And yet...

Yet despite all of the brokenness, one cannot deny there is such beauty, such profound beauty that it makes me ache.  The sound of the birds in the morning, the smell of a new day dawning on the horizon, the crystal sparkle of ice as it clung to trees, leaves, and grass blades, the smile of your child first thing in the morning...still cuddly from sleep, still innocent enough to see the magic of each new day.  The beauty in the smile a mother bestows upon her child in line at the grocery store, oblivious to others, the beauty in the greeting of a man confined to a wheel-chair that seems to always have a smile for you and a nice word to speak, beauty in the sermon that is preached, a book that is read, a story that is written.  Beauty in the first breath taken, beauty in the last breath exhaled…beautiful, oh so beautiful. 

How can things be so broken and yet so beautiful? 

Before I became an adult I used to pray 'please, oh please spare me the broken'.  Just let me gaze on the beautiful.  Give me laughter and joy but take from me the tears and unanswered questions. 

But, as always, His plan is better and brokenness came.  Sometimes it crept in drip-drip-drip of one thing after another, piling up quicker than patience could respond.  Sometimes brokenness came in the form of bills arriving in the mail with little or no money to cover them.  Sometimes it stole into relationships as someone, unleashing their angry and critical tongue, lashed and scarred my heart.  Sometimes it has come in the form of watching one of my children struggle with their health.  Sitting in endless doctor offices, hospital waiting areas...just wanting an answer.  How can we fix this and how can this child still live life to its absolute fullest?  Sometimes brokenness has been the result of my sin, facing my failures, letting go of a dream that I could have had, the hurt I inflicted with a rash response...

Either way, the brokenness has flayed me wide open and left me grasping for His presence and His comfort. Because of the brokenness He has become so very beautiful to me, His Words so precious.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Am Reading, Want to Read, Need to Read...

* Little Children, Big God (Sarah Valente) - am reading this one right now...WOW

* Teacup Novella # 5 (Diane Moody) - Started this while on winter break.  SO far I have really enjoyed it, however I had to pause it because I didn't get it finished before it was back to school time for us

* Educating the WholeHearted Child (Sally Clarkson) - just got this, have heard about it for years...finally broke down and ordered it.  WOW.

* Amy Harmon...recently discovered her (late summer/ early fall) HIGHLY recommend this author

* All Who Dream (Nicole Deese)...number three in her series.  I read this one while we were on winter break.  I love her writing, this one wasn't my favorite, but it was still really, really good.

* Pride and Jane Austen

* 10 Gifts of Wisdom (Sally Clarkson) on my reading list after I finish Sarah Valente's book

I keep a running tab on the right side for what we are reading aloud in our home....but right now we are reading :

* TumTum and Nutmeg as our bedtime read aloud.  Second time through this series and it is just as sweet, just as magical as it was the first time through.

* Eagerly anticipating the new Gooney Bird Greene...comes out on Tuesday

* Red Sails to Capri

* Charlotte's Web

* Homer Price

Listening to....

* Sarah Plain and Tall (three in series)

* Ramona and Beezus (series)

* and of course, Narnia and At Home in Mitford, these two are always on my iPod :)

What are you reading?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bible in 90 Days

OK, so I just finished it and it was awesome, intense, and I got behind more than I should have...and I plan on doing it again in the spring when Carrie hosts it again (this time in Chronological order)...but I want to do it again.


So when I saw Mom's Toolbox is hosting the challenge starting next Wednesday I decided to go for it.  You can too.  Click on the above link and read all about it and join in :)

My kiddos are all sick :( which means we haven't slept since Friday night.  And I am really, really tired.  So what did I just do?  Completely shelved my diet and made chewy oatmeal cookies using this recipe.  Prior to this week I was only 12 pounds from my goal weight.  It has taken two years but I have lost a total of 30 pounds.  And you know what?  I have eaten enough this week to completely crash my momentum. 

*edited to add*  OH MY WORD those are the BEST oatmeal cookies I have ever tasted.  Seriously.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Good Morning

It is cold, I have my cinnamon candle lit, and a hot drink in my is good to be up and about this morning. 

I absolutely love cold mornings. 

Life has been (mostly) really good the past two weeks.  It is amazing the difference that a year makes.  Time passes, sometimes really slow and yet there are those times that it seems to be on hyper speed, like sometimes you blink and it is a new day, week, or even month. 

Either way, I love fresh starts.

 I love the thought that this year I could conquer that one thing, achieve that one dream, become the mom that I want to is a fresh clean canvas awaiting the colors of life to splatter across it.  Yet, even now, on day three of our brand new year, I find myself having to be vigilant to beat down the fear that tries to creep in and smother the canvas with black and grey muted, suffocating colors.  The colors that refuse to let anything else be heard or seen, the colors that (to me) represent the  thoughts of, 'there is no guarantee this year will be any better than last year' or 'maybe this is just the calm before the storm'...NO.  No, even if it isn't any better, I don't want my canvas stained with those awful fears.  I want my canvas to be alive with vibrant colors of patience and peace and joy.  I want it splattered with the beauty of Jesus, under laid with a solid, sparkling foundation of knowing who God is and what He wants of me.  I want it woven throughout with trusting in Him.  Completely and totally.  And then?  Then, I want it capped off with a willingness to suffer what He would have me suffer, a total and complete surrender.

In short, I want my year to be beautiful.