Back Home

Back home. 1400 miles so far this week and it's only Thursday. Wow. For a girl not used to driving, I'm catching up.

Step Dad is better. Home. Recovering. Mom had a migraine middle of the night last night. We were up half the night. But, we giggled and ate out and laughed really hard together. I read her Psalms and we both relaxed. A hard week. But, a good mother daughter week. My hubbie and I have decided we must be grown-up now.

Hubbie's family made the DNR (do not recessitate) decision in paper today re. his uncle. He couldn't be there because I was gone. They talked it out by phone. Not the greatest solution, but there is peace about it. Sometimes death is not the worst option.

Heavy week. Heavy blogs! Real life.

Right now? I've had a nap, hubbie went and got us all KFC, and me and the kids are busy with painting huge suncatchers for the windows we picked up for them. Hubbie went out for some time alone. I hope we all rest well tonight. I love my family!



Quick Update

Yesterday was tough. My step-dad crashed.

My husband's uncle is sliding.

We're trying to stay rested and are in survival mode at the moment.

Today, my step dad is better. He's fighting the fever and they are dealing with pneumonia in both lungs...how it got there, we don't know.

Trying to get things caught up and keep things floating here for them. I'll be going going back for another visit soon. Appreciate the prayers for driving mercies.



Focal Experiment

Late Bloomer



Went to my garden for joy today and played with my camera settings for a few minutes.


Exhaustion & Need

My brain sinews are leaking out my eyeballs. It hurts. I am typing with my eyes closed my eyes hurt so bad. I am a wimp, I know. But, it's been a long few days. Sunday night, grabbed dear and loyal friend who took off work to get me to Illinios to a step dad's shoulder reattachment. Friend knew the way. We drove over 300 mi (open eyes for number keys, ouch, my eyes--I REALLY need sleep).

Slept poorly in hotel. Got up at 5am for surgery. 4-5 hour surgery for a tear much worse than expected. Praise God for successful surgery. Long, extensive rehab expected.

Drove back the same flat, boring 315 miles in and out of rain. Half way home, got call that my husband's uncle had heart attack, has less than 10% change of making it through the night. He was found having collapsed at a post office today. Still not conscious.

He's meant a lot in my life. Just always there with cheer and help when I needed it. To make it more complex, they have one grown daughter (pastor's wife with two small girls) who'd just made it to FL for vacation (pastors always get the short end of the stick on vacations). They are turning right around and driving back...at least a 12 hour drive one way for them.

I got my kids, husband is driving with his family to be with their family at hospital 100 miles away. They are outrunning a mean looking storm front moving through right now.

Lord, I know you are Lord. Be Lord. I do trust you. No doubt. Trying not to worry. Hoping. Praying.

Friends, sorry I can't call you all and ask for prayer to fill you in; I need some rest and need to stay off the phone.

Love you all very, very much. Thanks for praying . Sorry to dump on you, but such that it is. Thank you.



Weekend Warriors

Okay, so today did not turn out as I had supposed. First, I wanted to paint the two decks that needed painting. Ever tried to match a paint sample, and well...it ending up involving WAY too many trips back and forth to the paint store? This is one of those tales. Not a happy ending yesterday. Rainy, misty forecast anyway.

You know, after this week, I was really in a mood to GET AWAY. I've burnt all my stress steam cleaning all I wanted to clean and do around the house already this week. But, my Mr. Wonderful had himself a task list like a mile long and I pretty much moped all day deciding whether or not to fold the laundry in the dryer. It is still there.

I did, however, get the kids to help me vac the van and clean the inside windows. This is a first in the life of our van. It just seems pointless to clean the side windows at this stage in the game. But, since they are getting old enough to be trusted with Windex, I thought the lesson might stick.

I asked them if they wanted to do this again NEXT Saturday, just for fun. They were like, "NO!" So, we'll see. I wonder how many Saturdays I could stand it myself. A great mom would whip them into shape, I'm sure.

My husband was Edward Scissorhands for me today...whacking at all my shrubs. Wow. He has gone nonstop all day working out there. I'm impressed.

Tommorrow I'm supposed to sing and play the invitation solo. I've done it before, but this is the first time I've actually had any time to prepare for the event. It seemed it should be memorized...great song, a fav of mine anyway, goes with my "life verse", so I really wanted to learn it. I just got the chorus down on keyboard today. Well, sort of, most of the time. It seems memorized would be easy, but memorization just doesn't come quickly to me...or perhaps I've been doing it wrong, or haven't found a good way, or haven't REALLY needed to much. Anyway...here's goes a try. I've worked on that off and on all day trying to learn it.

My life verse, I've decided lately (at least this decade is from John): "and this is eternal life, that you may know the Father, and the Son, whom He has sent."

The song is "One Pure and Holy Passion" by Watermark (the fact that they are "retiring" as Watermark causes me much sadness. I'm hoping they'll keep doing something for Passion.) But, the song also goes with the Crowder book I'm really into this week: "Praise Habit".

Well, I'm off to see if my sweet friend has posted anything new on her new blog.

I've read a lot late that an indication of a successful blog when you get a lot of comments. I don't know. I have a lot of private friends who'd rather email or are quiet online and prefer to keep it that way. I'm honored a few of you want to 'blog' back, either by email or private blog you share with me. How cool is that?

Thanks! Have fun!


Love This>>>

Was surfing blogs and read this this morning. I love it. I think I'm going to have to put it on a notecard for reivew.

.: Greg from Winnipeg :.:
"I don't have high expectations of this coming year. All I want is to do the
impossible at every turn, have a relationship with God so intimate that it
incapacitates me, bring community to the lonely, reality to the blind, distress
to the comfortable, Jesus to the hurting, pull the kingdom of darkness out of
this community by it's roots, change the world and save the universe. For


Cultural Education for the Day

Okay, so I was cross-linked back to a hit from United Kingdom, blog of a blog friend...anyway, this girl is talking about going to see a skiffle . I'm like, "What is a skiffle ?"

So, there is a link to this band, and they look funny, so I click and get to a myspace music link where I can listen.

And. Hum. Oh. Wow. It's different. I like it.

What can I say...?

So, now my whole family is surrounding me at the computer at this point asking one question: "What in the world is THAT?"

What You've All Been Waiting For...

Drumroll please....

All the photo album links are fixed! Yee-haw!



Bare Ground--Good?

So...we got a deep, earth-drenching rain yesterday. We love to go out and pick up limbs and "weed" after a heavy rain. The soil is so moist that the weeds pull up all the way down from the root. My garden often does speak to me, and yesterday, once again, it was deep.

Standing there, holding a dandalion leaf with a five inch HUGE root--no way I could have gotten it out until the soil was thorougly drenched.

After all this talk about being "dry" vs. "drinking His water"--I realized it's as true for us as it is for plants: It's very hard to let go of "weeds" in our lives all the way down to the root until we've been thoroughly drenched by His water, His life, His spirit, His purposes, His "rain".

Isn't that profound? Okay, tell me it's profound. I know...gardening and all, some of you think I'm a weirdo...but, it's a family thing. My grandmother did it, my mother did it, and my husband did it. Once you do it, you never stop longing to see something grow, care for it, nurture it. Just something about it that calls to you.

Well, anyway, so I'm then pulling up some perfectly good grass in perfectly good soil! What about that? That injustice of it all!

So, I ask myself..."Why can't the grass grow here?" It has every "right" to grow here. It is a "legitimate" plant. It is beautiful grass. It is a good plant.

Then, the gardening mantra came back to me: "A plant out of place is a weed". Period. Pull it. Kill it. Move it. No mercy. Beauty is created by intentionality.

But...why? I asked myself. The answer was obvious, of course. The flower does not show forth all it's glorious wonder, well, in the middle of a pile of grass. We weed so that the area around the flower is BARE.


Well, what about the "inefficiency" of that! Hmmm.

I looked, again at my own inner life, and in all my "efficiency", longing to use every square inch of what I own and what I have... "productively". I realized in this approach, we can overlook this need for unused space--need because it emphasizes the focal point of what is being nurtured...what is most beautiful, most intentional, most lovely, glorious.

Someone told me once that there is nothing that CAN compete with Christ, so we should not worry about this. Hmmm. I'm not sure. I suppose you could put it that way. That is not the lesson of my garden. Focus. Weeding. Bare space. Declutter. Order. And, there's this: the grass can get mowed in the yard, it is cut and tended, but when it is in the flower beds? No...it grows out of control, tall, sets seed, and is unsightly. It must go.

It is not "intentional". I suppose this is the difference in this argument. Both rationals work. No...nothing competes with Christ, and yes, other things can clutter the picture.

This whole lesson brings about a longing in my spirit for intentionality, room for bare space, and focus on what is supposed to be the focal emphasis of my life right now. That constant paring down. Highlighting.

Well, that's all on the garden. I hope it's not too lame. But, even if it is to some, it spoke to me, and is, therefore, perfect to blog. Go get drenched, then weed!



Just a few minutes after I blogged the "blgh" blog yesterday, I had some of the best wisdom, prayers, and support. You know what I think? Sorrow is not heathy until it's able to be shouldered wtih someone else.

A friend read my blog, knew the day before I was having a tough time (I'd called her), realized it hadn't gotten better, and was here in minutes, just to sit with me, tell me it's okay, pray with me, and let tears fall for a minute. It felt good. I didn't feel bottled up anymore the rest of the day.

I hate when you can't share...discretion, privacy, private information. There is something refreshing when you can share news. I wonder if holding the gospel in should not cause similar angst in us?

Whoa...deep thought.

My husband came home early yesterday. We fixed lots of good food, weeded some in the garden together, and enjoyed a monsoon-like rain. So great to have him home through bad weather!

We are almost finished reading Da Vinci Code. It's a suspenseful thing. Although it's "fiction", I understand the outrage about it. Though it claims to be fiction, it's facts lists the book begins with are not supported historically in real life. Dates are off, making any claims to the secret societies mentioned and any claims to "real true" very far fetched. Honestly, had I not read another book and known the truth about those dates, it would have put a lot of scepticism in my mind about the church, history, and Chrisitianity. It's very scary what a well calculated story can do.

The Priory of Sion, which the book was based on, did not, in fact, come into being until much, much later than the author suggests. This alone shifts the credibility of it's "findings".

I hope we as a church handle the book responsibility. The wonderment of a "sacred feminine", a "female goddess" who Christ meant to lead the church forward has got to strike a chord with the feminist movement. I doubt they will let go of the notion quickly.

Have you read it?


Packed Like Sardines

The older I get the more I understand why some people do extreme sports. I have a hankering for one right now. Total mind distraction. Total focus. Total stupidity. Total escape.

This week has been one story hard after another in community circles.

Tuesday--my identity stolen.
Wednesday--a friend miscarried, a special person diagnosed with prostate cancer, another--baby stillborn at full term (excited happy family-->completely devastated family.)
Wow. Quite a week.

I love these people. I know Christ is enough...but, these situations are deep. Hope is far off. How they must hurt! I hurt for them.

How much, O Lord? I know there are ministers who handle stress and bad news constantly...how? I don't know. How to keep from getting cold and uncaring? How to lead when you don't want to lead? Just want to sit and cry. People need leading, joy, praise...more than they need more crying. But, the grief! So raw. Lord, deal with me.

Much bad news in one small window. Bad news packed in like sardines. How easy it is for it to cloud the skies to become so dark grey that light fights to get through. I am resting. I am thankful. But, I still feel like throwing up off and on four days now...the pain is just so real for people. We hurt for them.

It could be worse...it can always be worse. Good for us to be reminded of people's intense pain from time to time...and I am reminded this week. Almost too much to bear; I know... Christ bears it all. Still...we hurt for them.

My Lord loves all these people beyond comprehension. I know that I know that I know!

May your unfailing love rest upon us oh, Lord, even as we put our hope in you. Ps. 33:22



Only concerned about your sons with internet images? Think again. See Anne's story from flowerdust.net published today at Relevant Magazine Online.

RELEVANT MAGAZINE: "But in between my family's Christmas portrait and a broken, dot matrix printer sat a computer screen. Little did I know the place where I typed up book reports or instant messaged my friends would also become the doorway to an endless amount of forbidden fruit, and an endless amount of guilt."


This Guy Falls Down

Okay...to make my life easier, here is a direct quote re. The Book Club mentioned in the last post. I've not formally visited the actual discussion forum, but enjoy being exposed to new authors and current reading lists as he mentions them. I'll shut up now.

This Guy Falls Down: "The June Book Club selection...
...is Praise Habit, by some guy named David Crowder. We did a little
survey on the Message Boards, and Crowder's book won,
no contest. I haven't read it yet. I guess I'd better get to reading.
If you've seen David Crowder perform, you know that he has a very singular
personality. So it only stands to reason that he would capture some of that action and
reproduce it in text form for your reading pleasure and astonishment.
He did, and the result is called Praise Habit."

WHHHHPHHHHHH!!!!! (that's supposed to be the sound of a whip cracking).
Let's get to reading!"

Housekeeping Issue

I spoke to a dear friend yesterday who had so much trouble commenting with blogger losing her comments that she's given up. AAaaagggghhhh! My soul is bleeding.

I'll keep thinking on ways to better things on my end. And, she is right, God may have been preventing her ultimately when her time was needed elsewhere. That's fine.

In any case, some advice on commenting which may or may not prove useful: 1. After you comment on my blog, you should see your comments "fly up" above into the comment section and disappear from the "typing box".

You will not, however, see then appear on my actual blog yet (under "Comments" at the bottom of the blog, the number will not increase to show your listing for several minutes.)

IF you do not see your comments "fly up" to join other comments (or obviously by yourself if you comment first), chances are, you mistyped the security letters. I do it ALL THE TIME. I tend to blog when I'm taking a break...and a bit groggy or tired. So...mistakes.

Why are they there? She asks. Okay: These annoying letters to type in can only be read by the human eye. Computer programs cannot "spam" my blog with comments that say, "Love your blog! Come see my site at Viagra.blog.com!!!!, etc, ad naseum. I tried doing without the letters once. So....only the human eye can read the scatttered letters.

This being the case, many times I mistype the letters thinking an i is a j and such. Many times, probably half the time I comment on those using blogger, I realize my comments did not 'fly up'. Now, blogger is not clear about this phenomenon. It will simply display a new set of letters for you to try with your text comment STILL sitting in the comment typing window.

RETYPE THE NEW SET OF SECURITY LETTERS...your comments should still be showing in the blogger comment window and will "fly up" when you finally type it right. Consider it a free typing lesson complements of "me".

Now...if you've done all this and still get comments lost, or you've written something entirely meaningful and clever and it took a lot of time and you don't want to risk losing it as you try to publish the comment, or are emotionally scarred by this whole experience of perpetual loss....simply copy them with your "edit" command in Explorer or Firefox. If they are somehow lost, open a new comment window, paste them back in. You still have them. Or email them to me by pasting them into email. You still have them!

In any case, I see you visiting and know you've been by. Love you guys! Blessings. Thanks for visiting--I guess someone is getting something out of this crazy thing in spite of limitations. Hope this helps!

Streams in the Desert

The poor and needy search for water. Their mouths are parched with thirst, but water cannot be found.

I can't seem to get beyond this verse. But, some life responses have happened as a result of little it settle:

1. Bought two copies of David Crowder's "Praise Habit" to read with a friend this summer. Great read. Water.

2. Teaching my oldest son how to use his rNIV Bible this week. I don't want my kids to walk thristy with no water.

3. I bought my daughter a new Bible easier for her to read, hopefully more appealing than her KJV. She wanted a pure NIV to recognize verses she'd already memorized rather than one easier to read in soft pink leather. Surprised me.

Moving on: let's see...(I sometimes manipulate text to keep thinking about the words a while longer....like this:)

But I the LORD will Answer them;
I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.
18 I will make rivers on barren heights,
and SPRINGS within the VaLleYs.
I will turn the desert into pOOls of water,
and the parched ground into sPrInGS!

I read it about seven times actuating different words and meanings to arrive at that mess of Html code. So...the same general concept is stated here over and over--water in dry places. Why do you think he repeats it so many times? Insights?


He's the Man

Wow. Anne's post is so well written today, I don't even want to start! Great writing today. Humors me (and makes me want to be a better writer)! I should never read hers before I try to write my own! Anyway, after you go see her, here's my rambling.

I don't know about any of you other homies out there, but Father's Day weekend freaks me out. I mean, I usually get depressed, feel guilty, upset, and worried all weekend. And, usually remember somewhere in there that I'm more blessed than some to even have this problem.

Before you think I'm totally wacked out...and maybe I am...let me explain. I've had a hard time knowing what expectations are for each of the "special men" in my life, and how to fit them all into one day-weekend.

My husband had to work all weekend, so FRIDAY--I planned a grill out (non-Father's day meal, but special family time Friday a bit too early to call it "Father's Day Meal", ya know?). But, it is special, foreward thinking.

In addition, I know we're going to have to cover HIS dad before Sunday since my husband is working all weekend. So, we do that Thursday. Again, a bit early, but foreward thinking.

Also, we aren't going to be able to travel as a family, so I fit that in Saturday to go see my Dad.

So, then, Sunday, I'm remembering mom hinting some special time for my step-dad (a meal) would be thoughtful (hint, hint). I am seeing I cannot swing that. Bought him a card, gave it to him at church. Gave father in law a card at church. Surprised husband at work with kid's creations from Sunday School. (win, win, win)...rushing to the store before church to buy more cards. I'm not up to five cards at $3.50 a peice (a couple "real" cards the kids wanted to buy this year, though homemade are best, after seeing me pick mine out...one included a much used whoppie cushion which we've already exploded).

Four meals out to celebrate Father's Day with all the different Dads.

Yesterday, we REALLY need to make a visit to the funeral home AND fit my husband's "real" special meal in. My husband gets dissed the minute he walks in the door suprisingly by someone who didn't like a recent business decision he made. We wanted to feed fish and ducks and had taken dry bread...it came a monsoon after no rain for two weeks.

We came home, tried to take much needed naps-- the phone rang off the hook ALL AFTERNOON LONG...CONTINUALLY Beep, ring, buzz, squeal (kids), buzz, ring, ring.

Overall, Father's Day took me four days to complete, and I finish sad and frustrated. I'm really not sure I succeeded with my main man. He's so awesome, such a tee-totallally, sold out, awesomely, great Dad. I tried to tell him, but I was too exhausted and worried and frustrated by the schedule for him to really feel it...for me communicate it well.

Does the day go better for anyone else? And...before you answer, how many men are you responsible for making "feel special" on Father's Day? I'd sure like my joy to go up in it all.
Other holidays, we celebrate as "weeks" rather than days. So, we get "Anniversary Week". It's a lot easier to make someone feel special as you have your best energy and time in a week. Maybe I need to go to "Father's Day Week" for him. I just can't pin it down in a day! I feel like I missed it. He missed it. And he SO deserves it!!!



Waffle Boy Update--Go For It!

Game Two Score: 18500
Top it! Post it here! You know you want to.

(I didn't survive the River Canyon too well on level two! Tip....falling off the jetski is NO GOOD!) Level one tip...jump on the motorcycle! (On or off the bike and ski, jump with spacebar...arrows for direction.)

Waffle Boy's Mountain Adventure

My Score First Time: 10600. Top that!


Built to Last

"The poor and needy search for water...their mouths are parched with thirst, but water cannot be found."
Considering the context of this, you see HOW THRISTY the people in Isaiah's daywere, the utter devatstation and destruction it took in their lives for them realize their true thirst.

Isaiah says these people had been so blinded that they could not see that the same peice of wood they burned for fire was the same peice of wood they'd carved an image out of and prayed to for answers. They were blinded by so much "stuff" that they never took time to realize that none of it made sense. "Props". That scares me...that we can be too "full" too see basic truths.

I go read Isaiah most when I need to be reminded of hope. There, even in God's wrath, he demonstrates the unbelievable mercy. I mean, the people walked in lifestyles of sin, raitonalized it, did not keep their covenant to him, ignored everything he said: yet he was waiting for them, longing to meet their deepest needs...for water...for Him. He loved them so much that he even allowed them to suffer so that they remember truth. He is the only true help and hope.

Failure after failure...yet, he woo-ed them. Wanting to love them. Restore them. Be their God. Help them find real life. Real, satisfying, fulfilling, living water. No more searching. Treading water. Floundering around...missing it. He wanted them to "get it". To really live! Live the only full and satisfying life...in Him...with His blessing, covering, guidance, promises, and instruction.

The Bulb Mass (size of a small onion here)

So... bulbs store up nutrients through long seasons, actually needing more soil, more space! Not more water. The extreme climates are seasons where the bulb is nourished with nutrients for the next season. Bulbs are meant to grow over larger and larger territory by multiplication. Without new soil, they actually STOP producing flowers. I have some day lilies that no longer flower...the root mass does not have enough soil in all the bulb mass to support flowering. I need to dig them up, wack them apart, and spread them out. Usually takes a VERY deep hole and some serious chopping.

Anuals (below) need water daily and are planted by seed every season, unable to handle extreme temperatures. See the shallow root system?

What is God saying TO ME in this little tidbit of trivia?

I think, for me...it has to do with eating daily, but all trusting his seasonal preparation of my spirit when I'm not getting "the daily time" with Him I feel I need. I'll try to place scriptures here (for Anne and Carol who I know would ask!) over the next week. A few come to mind, but I'd have to look them up. If you think of any that apply to or explain this annual-bulb theory as it relates to drinking...post!

No Picture! :-(

A break from the text in this post.

I lost about eight months worth of digital negatives from last year. I thought I'd backed them up before deleting them from my old computer's hard drive. Had prints of most of what I wanted anyway...but, whew...still a loss. Red's first major league ballgame. Man! Just realized I can't insert a pic I want on this blog. Ouch!

Teaching my oldest son to throw and catch this week. We've never done t-ball or any of that. Teaching my youngest to try to hit a little plastic ball last night. SO fun. Mom can "really hit is far!". A whole 20-30 feet! Who-hoo! Impress 'em while you can, I say!

Red played UNO for the first time ever last night. Notable were his sound effects whenever he laid down any card with "words" on it (he didn't know what they say or mean yet). "SHA-BAaM!", "WHOOM!", "KA-BOOM!", every turn. He did liven up the game a bit!

I just realized I've laready had five friends come to visit me this lonely Saturday morning. Hubbie has to work. I am thankful. How incredibly blessed I am to have such solid people to share my life with. I hope all of you choose to blog soon and share you're life and stories with me! I really do. It keeps me on track. It reminds me where you've been. I don't battle depression as I used to as a stay at home mom. It helps me celebrate in a more formal way (and share frustrations with those who always encouage and pray for me almost immediately), and it allows me to keep in touch ( and make, at times) friends I would lose touch with otherwise. I have loved it. Pray about it! Let me know if you want to try it.

I like all types of blogs...those who post once a week, short ones, long ones, impersonal ones, rambling ones, "professional" ones. A better investment of my time than the newspaper or TV. Do you have concerns about blogging that keep you from writing one (other than time)? Let me know. Maybe there's an answer for you me or another PDB-er could help you with.


Exhibits A-B

Above: Poor guy. I took this picture yesterday....a new transplant. I've watered it three times in the last two days.

Condition: critical care, ICU.
Bulbs transplated last last fall. I have NEVER watered them...NEVER, not at all. That bed looked equally as pitiful when I started last year.

Why the difference in drinking? Think about it. Spoke to me yesterday in terms of why my "drinking habits" change over time.

What do you make, if anything, from that? (Hint: think root system...bulbs vs. annuals.) Stick around if you have no clue...very cool!

Be Needy

Wednesday: only girls in the house. Pool. Dress up. Painting (no spills). Slip and Slide. Homemade chococolate chip muffins (yuck!). Great Bible study last night--on journaling and sharing your life's story with people...your day by day walk with the Holy Spirit...not just your salvation story. Great plug for blogging!

Insightful comments yesterday. For today, I'll give my comment by post. I may use the comment section at times, so check for responses. Respond to each other. Great people here.

Anybody pipe in at any time on any verse--I get comments by email no matter where they come on the blog posts. We'll keep moving through the text each day also.

Isa 41:17-20
17 "The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the LORD will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.

WHO is poor and needy?
WHAT is "poor and needy"
Am I "parched" for the right thing?
Do I trust God to answer to my thirst? Do I wait?
Do I know He will not forsake me, even when I am at the deepest point of need?

Poor: someone who cannot afford something necessary to life. Is this just the earthy poor? No. I cannot "afford" God. I do not have the resources to woo him, or the resources to gain his approval or attention.

Needy: ha! Me. Yes! It's scriptural to be "needy!" Go God! "Needy"...someone in need of something. Not just a want. Required to sustain life.

Can we camoflouge needs with other things? Yeah. Isaiah says we put our water in cisterns that don't hold water. A harrowing thought. Even godly priorities can camoflouge our own need to the point that we feel tired and down without realizing why we are empty.

Am I making time to get needy? I need to. This is the essence of Lordship...not just to be "lorded over", but to be in life-sustaining level need of my master.

Even with great priorities, something has to go. Sacrifice is always required to find him.


Athletes...what CAN you drink to quench thirst? What SHOULD you drink? Why?

He promises to answer and not forsake us for the searching. What do you need to let go of to find time to get in touch with your base level thirst? How often do you need it? (And I'm not looking for the standard answer. Really. How often do you need to let other things go and find him. Sometimes, his work has to take priority over our need...we develop perseverance. How do you pace yourself? If you have something to share...do so.)
next: I will make rivers flow on barren heights, and springs within the valleys. I will turn the desert in to pools of water, and the parched ground into springs.

What does this verse mean in terms of your life? Are you more inclined to look at it as a promise, or as a challenge? Personally, there are some areas I'd selfishly just like him to leave dead. Do we have to give him permission to redeem things?


New "Game"


1. Refreshment. Only two girls here. Long shower. Slow morning. No kid's fussing or barging in the bathroom. Aaaah.

2. I love email. I love comment posts. THANKS! A lot of wisdom there. If you don't read what others tell me? Well, better than what I say (and usually shorter!)

3. I love friends who blog (published and unpublished). THANK YOU! I love your lives.

4. I love godly women. Thanks for investing your life in mine. More than a hobby. You helop define my life. THANK YOU!

5. First day of soul care with God yesterday. I had taken a break from study for a while...I'd had several classes in a row and needed some down time. Time to get back on track. Junk floats to the top.

6. Time for summer goals. Want to memorize a passage of scripture significant to me...did that with a friend once and have cherished..fed my soul for years without a lot of immediate "thinking" on my part...good for summer!

Anybody game? Let me know. I have some fun blog ideas in mind to quiz ourselves. Either comment or email me. Isa. 41:17-20.

First goal: Read through, then think on the meaning of the first verse. Post comments if you wish. We'll be moving fast, so hang on!

NIV is my memorizing version of choice. Use whatever you like.

Don't want to stop computing to get out your Bible? No excuse! Here you go: (NIV) Tip: Copy the text, hit PRINT, select PRINT SELECTION to have a printout of just the text below that you want to memorize! It doesn't get any user friendly than that! :-)

Isa 41:17-20

17 "The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the LORD will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.

18 I will make rivers flow on barren heights, and springs within the valleys. I will turn the desert into pools of water, and the parched ground into springs.
19 I will put in the desert the cedar and the acacia, the myrtle and the olive. I will set pines in the wasteland, the fir and the cypress together,
20 so that people may see and know, may consider and understand, that the hand of the LORD has done this, that the Holy One of Israel has created it.



Today my spirit feels frustrated. Ever so busy for a season it takes you a while to "re-enter" your own life again? I was thinking today:

If I took away everything I did for other people...friends, family: what would be left of me?

If I took away family...what would be left of me?

If I took away service to causes and defending the others and dealing with issues and problems...what would be left of me?

If I took away the refreshment needed to deal with the weight of all the stuff...what would be left?

I suppose it is a joy that worthwhile causes and people shape me and make me who I am. But, do you ever have days when you wonder just who you are? Or if it really matters at all?

No...I give what I am to all those things, my stengths, the challenges of my weaknesses.

I am still me, even in the midst of it all!

Yet, some days, I start feeling lost. In a fog, easily angered by injustices and people too busy and bottlenecks in processes and change.

Occurs to me that this comes after a season of too much planning and activity and not enough soul care.

Enjoy the pics of last night. My husband wanted a family garden this year. Seeing as how my kids struggle eating many fruits and veggies, he's doing it more for the experience. Not sure I'm up to it personally, but I did enjoy them out with shoveling and hoes (nearly knocking each other in the head swinging them around...I didn't enjoy that part).

A Newbie. Love the bright orange! Go God!

New Day Lily to Bloom Yesterday...Isn't she lovely?

My Men at Work

My kids last night shoveling and hoeing their first family garden. They sere so excited.


Today at TumbleWeed...Birthday Boy gets his own free ice cream...VERY happy boy. He thought sis had gotten some earlier and was very mad he didn't get any...turns out hers was only a cup of butter for her potato.

My camera and I are about to get WET! Is that a water gun or what?

My SuperBoy

My baby is FIVE! Third year he's wanted the very same cake..."LarryBoy" with super suction plunger ears. (VeggieTales)

My man showed up with a tie on to match my dress all on his very own...what a man! We had a great time on our "date" hosting the dance. Food was great, magnolias were in full bloom, a zillion candles, great band. We had a wonderful evening. We slipped out to get a quick pic made. We don't dress formally every month...it's usually fun themes. But before it got "too hot" we thought we'd have a more formal dance. It was over 89 and and air unit was down in the dance hall. We had to go run down fans it was so hot. Men left with shirts sopping wet from getting their groove on in the scorching weather. But, everyone seemed to enjoy it anyway. I love to see married couples dancing together...they have their own style and rhythm...no one can dance with them like their spouse does. It's a great time. If you've never taken some basic ballroom dance lessons with your spouse, do it. It will change the way you both look at dancing. We enjoy it now, and I don't get a cramp in one hip from us rocking in circles! We're so glad we did it. 4-6 nights of lessons, and we have fun now. Most steps can be relaxed to even do pop songs...it's not "formal" in the strict sense, not what we do...but it's a starting point. It's hard at first while you are learning, but it's worth it. You'll never regret the investment. Just do it! Have you done it?


Oneplace.com: Desiring God Radio (John Piper) - Article

In an article titled How to Respond to the Horrible Sayings of Jesus, John Piper writes: "...at the end of the parable, Jesus says in Luke 19:27, 'As for these enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slaughter them before me.'"

During his sabbatical in England, Piper was compelled by the instruction Jesus left us to teach all things he had commanded us. He was making passes through all four gospels writing down all of Jesus commands in a better effort to know, understand, and obey them. This one struck him as "horrible" to consider. I would tend to agree. Read the full article here.


1. Blogger is on the blink,--thanks for letting me know.

2. Thanks for the input. Let me know if you had trouble. I had trouble reading all the way across the screen with text so close to the margin, so I made entries in a more narrow column.
3. I'd love to figure out how to fashionably get my header to go all the way across the top, but for now, I'll be a trendsetter and just do it different.

4. Unrelated: I like bare skin. I mean...I'm just not fond of tattoos. In case you are feeling like the only odd-ball, you aren't. It is fashionable to get them, and if you have one, that's cool...they have improved. However, I really like beautiful, plain, glowing, healthy, bare skin. So, if you don't have one...I like your skin just fine. I'm too fickle for tattoos, personally. I got my second ear hole and HATED it a couple years later. Now, it won't grow back up and I really regret it. It was peirced too close to the first hole to be of any benefit, and I have trouble keeping up with one set of holes.

5. I got some windows washed today, five closets reasonably straightened, the kitchen in working order, and painted my two window shelves that needed a fresh coat. Go me!

6. There is no food in my house. We will be eating breakfast for supper.

7. When I'm bogged down, I like making unrelated lists of things. Lists are cool. Must clear out mental clutter somehow.

8. Though a fast paced read, Da Vinci Code has some serious plot flaws besides the spiritual and historical errors. Stay tuned for more.

With that...BYE!

Your Personal Online Coach

FlyLady.net: Your personal online coach to help you gain control of your house and home: Well, today was the day. I visited flylady.com. Tip after tip to go there, but honestly, I did not want a schedule for my housekeeping! --The one thing I have control over!!! Nobody telling me how or when to do it.

Or, do I have control? No...right now, it's controlling me!

I had the inspiring thought: "Okay...MAYBE if I'm scheduled with THAT, I can enjoy OTHER things unscheduled now rhat the kids are getting older...like hospitality." Still I'm not sold. Then I read the opening lines:

Are YOU living in CHAOS (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome) like Franny in the pink sweats? Do you feel overwhelmed, overextended, and overdrawn? Hopeless and you don't know where to start? Don't worry friend, we've been there, too.

She sends you daily emails telling you what to tackle that day.

Scroll to bottom of a very long home page, packed with inspiration on cleaning to find this: "Running out of ideas on ways to pamper yourself? Let these member tips encourage you :
Pamper Ideas!!!
Pamper Ideas Part 2!!"

Okay, this is sounding VERY inspirational!


Boring Blog Update Note

So...now I get the three columns of typepad with free blogger! Now, that's inspiration for the day!

Some of you like it, some are still having to get used to it. Okay, so you liked my daffodils? Well, why didn't you say so? Thanks.

But, time to move on. It's summer. This is a pic of the sky I took last year. On a down day, I often take out the camera and capture the sky...God's gift to me. I'm reminded of all the good God has made for me to soak up. Sunshine. White clouds. Blue skies. Movement. I love it.

I'm still working on the code trying to figure out how to make all the colors work, but it's nice. I do like breaking up the long sidebar. Bigger font today and margins I like better. Let me know your preferences or thoughts...if you care at all, and if you don't, that's quite alright!

Black Ties and Other Perils

Did I mention we got 3/4 in of rain in 40 minutes. As a rather interesting follow-up to the last entry...the basement also flooded. I have been vacuuming for four hours.

My abs hurt. Was needing to work out today anyway.

Hubbie tells me it needs to be shampooed tomorrow. Just what I wanted to do.

Instant workout...there you go. Look for the positive!

Red's party to get ready for (thank goodness I got so much done today), a black-tie party for 50+ to help host Saturday night (thank goodness I'm almost ready--caterers on board, calls made, decorations planned--my husband and I are part of a cotillion club for ballroom dancing. No you don't have to be as good as they are on TV!) We seldom get to go, but it's our month to host. A live band month this weekend. I'm so excited. A date sounds great...even if I am serving hoirderves and hostessing.

Well, you know what sexy looks like? It's not a black tie, or even ballroom dancing...well, it is...but, not to me right now. At the moment, it is a husband at 11PM after a full week and a full day, fixing my van and then being surprised having to vac out water-- with no complaint. That is sexier than sexy. He's AWESOME. I love my man...truly. What a fine choice I did make. Like James Bond...black ties and intense schedules. Impressive.

And, now, time for an ice cream break and some rest.


You know. I need a good cry right about now. Sometimes the work of life just gets overwhelming. I had to skip church tonight so that I could vaccuum water off my back porch (carpeted) from a monsoon like rain that just hit. I didn't really want to go yesterday because I have so much that needs to be done at home this week. Now that I have to miss, it ticks me off.

My van is skipping...and not out of happiness. I got a letter from the extended warranty company the very next day that it went bankrupt in December.

Don't get me wrong. I had a great day. A friend offered to watch my kids overnight so I could get birthday shopping for Red done today. She was here washing my dishes, helping me get lunch on the table when I got back. Now...that's a friend. She glows with Christ. Servanthood. Selflessness. She was beaming out of the surprise. I love you, friend.

But now...I don't want to work. I want to sit down and have a summer evening.

I don't want to do the laundry. I don't want a spic and span house (though all the "stuff" cleared miraculously wouldn't bother me). I don't want to dry vac. I want the house decorated and furniture bought and walls painted, and trim touched up...

and...then what? Some other work to do to fill my time. To stress me.

So, I guess... why not rest and let it happen as it does? Enjoy it all a little more than I am right now?

Knowing I'm having parties here always totally motivates me to get "stuff" done...and totally overwhelms me because there is SO much to do. I know...I need a schedule to keep from being overwhelmed...and I REALLY hate the word.

What totally overwhelms you? And, more importatly, how do you snap out of it? (Other than getting toasted...which wouldn't really help me out considering).

Me!%$*&^@)( (That's "me"-- spazzed out)


Well, there it is. My first official swing of my own of my married life. Took me almost 14 years, but I made it! We had one in a rental house when my oldest was 1 yr. old. He fell asleep on my lap many times there in that unfamiliar place. Today, Red looked over the back, testing it out. He said, "Wow! I can see clear to Texas from up here!" Boy Wonder said, "I wonder how many hails they got bayed." "I mean...bails they got hailed...how many bails of hay they got!" He was obviously wonder struck with the swing. Goldilocks just bossed all the boys around, told them where to sit and what to do and finally ran them off so she could grab a blanket and pillow and cuddle in my lap...and tell me how to "host" her as her human pillow.

The Hay Bailed--19 Rolls. Our first year with our own hay on this land. No animals on our little farm yet. No Rain! Whoo-Hoo! (Wet Hay makes the Hay mold inside the bails...yucky). I'm not a farm girl, but I figure if I fake it long enough, I won't have to feed animals.

Toby Mac's "Diverse City"

I love this song...and I'm not even a fan of wrap. Check it out.
iTunes Link: http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewAlbum?playlistId=25516223&s=143441&i=25516190

Words: (Load 'em on the pod):
They call us Diverse City we're colorful good/It's like a freak show in your neighborhood/So, if you wanna pray you can come on down/ cause this freak show’s leaving the ground/

Up, up and away, baby we don't play, maybe you thought you was done for the day/He said, she said, I said this, that you can't get away from the moment of bliss/Stirring, we’ll lure you in and we'll make room for the shade of skin/Short ones, tall ones, skinny ones, bigger./ Love is the gun and we pullin' that trigger/you send me and I’ll send you/ hope in the form of a new tattoo/Mine is the shiny city on a hill/ and yours, of course, is the colors that fill it/

We'll take you high, we'll take you higher/They call us Diverse City/we're colorful good/It's like a freak show in your neighborhood/So, if you wanna pray you can come on down/cause this freak show’s leaving the ground/

Now come to the city where you can praise/,if you’re black, if you’re white, if you're yellow or grey/In the morning, in the night, anytime of day/What's that place-Diverse City/With curls in your hair and braids on the side/Straight shake'em loose, just come on and ride/We're a body with parts, like you and me/Together we make diversity/We’ll take you high, take you higher/Welcome to Diverse City, we’re colorful good/It's like a freak show in your neighborhood/So, if you want to pray you can come on down/Cause this freak show's leaving the ground/Said we're Diverse City, we’re colorful good/It's just a state of mind, the way that we should, baby/So, if you wanna pray you can come on down/Cause this freak show's leaving the ground/

You bring the heart, I’ll bring the soul/I'll bring the flag, you bring the pole/We'll fly it high so the whole world knows/The dream of a king 'bout to unfold/We 'bout to do this thing for real/Diverse city got mass appeal/So put your hand in the hand of mine/And we'll spread this love like dandelions
Blogger isn't reading any font well for this post...not sure why. Hopefully you can scan around it. Cool song on diversity. I love the line: "Love is gun and we're pullin' the trigger."


Death Clothes

Well. I'm exhausted. Red's birthday party is Saturday, which always throws me into a Martha Stewart tailspin. Well. Not to any extremes... I just start doing weird things, like wanting to touch up paint things that should have been painted two years ago. I spent all day painting and need to paint some more tommorrow.

Reminds me of the guest speaker yesterday. Well. Not Really. But, I just wanted to write about it and needed some segueway.

We had this guest speaker. He works with troubled teens across the country retraining them, eductating them, teaching them job related skills. Awesome concept. Anyway, he was preaching for us Sunday.

As many times as I've heard the passage on Lazarus, I've NEVER thought about the direction he took it.

1. Martha had to state her belief to him...again. This was imperative. He said that we all come to a point in life, even as Christians, where Jesus asks us, "Do you really trust me to handle this?" (Do you really believe I am the son of God?) She said, "Yes. I believe. But, if only..."

2. She knew his presence and power would have made the difference. We have to believe that he can make a difference, no matter what has happens. And that he can. And will. Somehow.

3. He called Lazarus by name to come out. Lazarus had to choose to get up and come. (I was a little shaky on this. I mean, can you imagine Jesus saying, "Lazarus, come forth!" And Lazarus says, "Uh, I'm okay. This is way cool. Thanks anyway, Jesu!"

4. This cracked me up. Martha says, KJV: "But, surely he stinketh!"

He said that people who are walking dead around us WILL STINK. HELLO. Get used to it. Death smells. Life smells. Are you willing to smell the stench of death to try to bring new life?

5. They had to get closer and obey his order to unwrap the cloths. Now...Jesus was really wise in telling them to do that for him in my opinion. No, seriously. The speaker said that we have to be willing to help people out of their death messes. Even after being saved, people can show up still tangled in that stuff. We have to help them out...unwrap them.

6. We are to have a passion for new life for people. That should be our driving purpose and mission. If it is not, we have lost perspective. 150,000 people die every day physically and many go to spend an eternity in hell.

The altar call was moving. Many prayed. I did. I needed my altar spot.

Do you see the church succeeding or failing where you are in "unwrapping" people? How do you see yourself in that role?

Hubbie is working on a swing for the back porch I found Sunday for $15.00. I painted and sanded on it all day today. I can't wait!


Sat Stuff

This week, my son won an iPod..actually his grand-dad did, and gave it to him. We've been introduced to the 1GB iPod Nano. Fun. It's a tiny little thing. We loaded 80+ songs on it the first day. He loaded words onto it. It's great to see him enjoy my taste in music at 9 yrs. old. I hope it lasts. Hearing him walk around the house singing, earphones dangling...so much fun. He wants me to find "Days of Elijah" to put on it. I don't have a copy. We've not had an iPod yet, so we're having fun learning how to use it.

This week, we went to a fair. Rode rides. I got sick.

Last night, I went to scrapbook night. Stayed til 11. Started my new gardening book. A journal of all the flowers and gardens I've had--something for me to enjoy. My favorite brand of paper and style right now is a company called "Rusty Pickle." Interesting name. Ironically, everything looks aged. Some scrappers (short for scrapbookers started this whole expensive, time consuming trend to keep things from aging, now go back and ink the pictures to make them look "timed". Soft. Worn. Loved.

I love the way scrapbooking keeps me thankful and celebrating the sweetest joys of my life. God creates. To create gives us also a sense of delight. Feels good to share that joy with Him. He is the maker of ALL things good. Creator God. CReAte!

Today has been a wonderfully refreshing and relaxing "family vacation day" at home. No projects...none planned or put in stone anyway. I very full week for hubbie at work. First, we stayed up until 2AM watching "Hitch". It was hysterical. Next, we slept in some, baked homemade Cinnamon yeast rolls & fresh brewed coffee, then had quiet times together on the porch, made some planning calls, and finally...gave each other foot rubs while the kids swam.

Now, THAT'S a relaxing morning. I love my man. He knows, or is learning, when we both need family rest together. We sat beside the water all day reading out loud to each other, parenting TOGETHER. Ah. Such a relief to enjoy that with a friend. My best friend. My helper. My defender. My man. I've been missing him lately more than I realized. We've been together with a lot of holiday and running and social obligation, but not a lot of focused :family: time together. For lunch, I took out simple lemonade and peanut butter and crackers.

I had bought some thin porkloins on sale yesterday for a big supper later on the grill. He grilled, I did veggies. Green beans, baked potatoes, mac and cheese. cole slaw. Relaxed dinner outside on the patio. Help. Togetherness. All running in the same direction, resting, doing the same thing. No hassles of traveling...just vacationing at home. I highly recommend it when you are both in the mood. My defination today of ecstacy.

He's gone to get a tractor to mow hay. I love to watch him out in the field...reminds me of the summer we courted. Me playing Nanny in his grandparents old farmhouse, him out in the fields, bringing me his Mom's home cooked "fiddles" for lunch. Her friend chicken is out of this world! Steak...right off the farm...fresh, purebread heaven.

I'm not sure if I said yes to him or the food! Very smart man.

God gives us all good things to enjoy. Oh! It feels SO good to slow down enough to soak for a day, rest, and be thankful...::: together:::!



A Day in the Life of a Mom

Accomplishments for today: Learning how to vac the pool without blowing up the $800.00 pump, keeping prime in the pump while vacc-ing, having a temper tantrum after losing prime and having vac contents spill back into pool after an hour of vac-ing, and teaching children to not ask for favors while I'm M-A-D and T-I-R-E-D and F-E-D U-P!!! (Still working on that last one. They don't take normal hints well. Moms are ALWAYS available. Whew.)

A few minutes ago, 9 yr old son is helping me watch the pressure on pump. Watching all the work it has taken to deal with getting the pool ready. He says sincerely, sitting there on the side of the pool. "I love you, Mom."

I looked up from the aggravating job, suddenly quite gratified with my life work after a day of wondering why I don't get paid for this.

And...twenty minutes later, he asks if he can go to Grandmas. Take the moments while you can get them. Write it down.

Tonight, my brother and his family leave today for their new military home ten hours away. I'll sure miss my cute nephew as he grows. Yup, in this pic, he's reaching for ME! Being an Aunt is so much fun. Boo-hoo-hoo. Sniffle. Sniffle.