When You Need a Real Life Friend

Today, I had a medical procedure that caused me immense anxiety.  I asked for prayer on Facebook and was touched by all those that responded.  But, I needed more than the reassurance that someone, somewhere was praying for me.  I needed someone to look me in the eye, tell me to calm myself down and to pray with me and over me.  So, I drove to a dear friends house and she did just that.  And, it helped. In real life friendships are invaluable.  We are designed to need each other, to crave community. I am beyond blessed by the women God has brought my way over the years that have spoken truth into my life, lifted me up when I was down and encouraged me to let loose and just laugh sometimes {something I wouldn't do without prompting}. That is why I am excited to host an (in)RL get … [Read more...]

Reaching for God sized dreams

Sometimes I feel bad for dreaming, for letting my mind wander to what could be. Then I remember that the desires of my heart can always be conformed to His heart if I relinquish them. There's nothing wrong with dreaming, so long as you turn the dreams over to the will of God. I dream of.... ~ adopting more children, preferably from foster care or children with special needs from overseas ~ traveling to Greece and Italy ~ owning a spot {cottage, house, condo, umbrella} on the beach--any white sand with the ocean lapping at my heels will do   ~ more time to spend with those I love ~ living close to my brothers {Florida bound one day is what I hope to be} ~ keeping my house clean for more than a few days at a time {is that even possible with four kids, especially if dream number one … [Read more...]

A beautiful day

Yesterday was a beautiful day. We walked with our two graduates in a special recognition ceremony at church. Two kids who have beat the odds to reach this milestone in their lives.  Our hearts were full of love and pride and gratitude.                                 Then, the day got even better as three of the young moms from our YoungLives ministry followed through in believer's baptism! We ended our day with a birthday dinner for Jared. Like I said, it was a beautiful day. And, the counting of gifts continues~ ~  special ceremonies that make mama's cry ~  beautiful weather ~  motorcycle ride with the hubby ~  pink tennis balls for my walker ~  aloe vera for sunburned … [Read more...]

What I learned from Oprah

I have watched Oprah for as long as I can remember. A woman to look up to for a girl who shared similar wounds from childhood. A woman that rose above the challenges of her life and desired to do good things for others. As I grew and realized we thought differently about many things, I didn't watch with the frequency of my youth.  Occasionally, I will turn on her show as background noise {is it weird that I concentrate better with background noise? perhaps a side effect of a busy, noisy house} and that is what I did the other day. I was checking emails, halfway listening to Oprah's conversation with a previous guest. I turned up the volume when I realized she was apologizing to him.  And her words pierced my heart... "I was coming from a place of pride and "How dare he?" I turned off … [Read more...]

Miss(ter) Independent

There is a thirst for independence in teenagers.  An unseen force, pulling them away from dependence on their parents and toward a future they don't see or understand.  Yet, they respond heartily to the call and pull of that force, while we parents want to fight it with every fiber of our soul. In a few short days, my husband and I will drop Jared and Matt (14 and 12) in Florida to stay two weeks with my dad and my brothers.  They are going to have a great time!  Adventures with Grandpa Bill, beach with Uncle Ian, amusement park with Uncle Tom..they are going to have fun and create special memories. And, they are pumped.  Their mama is deflated. They have never been away from me for this long.  They will fly home alone in two weeks. My feelings are hurt that they are so excited to get … [Read more...]

Modern Day Miracle

Who would have thought that a rickety roller coaster and a sweltering day at a cheesy quaint amusement park could bridge huge holes of the heart? God. Who would have thought that the day would be full of smiles and fun, rather than anxiety and angst? God. Who would have thought that racing go-karts together (see daddy way there in the back, ha!) would be freeing in so many ways? God. Who knew that this mama's heart would behold {all} her children reunited on this side of heaven? God. Saturday was a very special day for our family.  It was the first time we had all been together, the five of us, in the same place at the same time in THREE years! God gave me a gift that I had given up on a long time ago.  And I have been unwrapping it ever since! {If you haven't been here … [Read more...]

Unplugged

It was serene. It was relaxing. Time spent reveling in the uniqueness of my children and the sheer handsomeness of my husband. Time spent laughing with friends and playing board games. Roasting marshmallows, making smores and chatting by the fire.  Watching my boys stoke the fire, enthralled by every spark and ember. I unplugged this weekend and it was a gift I intend to unwrap more often. This post is linked to Tuesdays Unwrapped. … [Read more...]

Memories

Have you ever wrestled with memories?  Memories can evoke the warm fuzzies, can make us smile or laugh out loud.  Memories can remind us how blessed we are and can get us through a difficult time. Memories can also be painful, reminding us of a time of despair or sorrow.  Memories can make us weep, cringe and cause us to shake our heads at the decisions we have made in the past. God's memory is something that we can't comprehend.  He has the ability to forget our sins- as far as the east is from the west so far has He removed our transgressions from us Psalm 103:12.  God takes our sins and hurls all our iniquities into the depths of the sea Micah 7:19. God has not seemed to share that gift with us and I am kind of glad He didn't.  Remembering my sin(s) is one of the things that keeps … [Read more...]

Tale of Two Houses

There once was a girl with a house: It's time to move, agreed her spouse. So, they packed up their things, tried not to cling and prepared  to create a new adventure. The ugly border must go Hard work and time will show That this house can be home It matters not where you roam Home is with the people you love. Memories stay in  your heart and plenty we have to impart to our kids and theirs, regardless of where our address says we live. So goodbye to the old and hello to the new A practical home we christen too A new phase in life Hopefully with less strife and plenty of memories yet to come. *We are busy moving between the two houses and so my posting will be sporadic for a little while.  Please bear with me* This post is linked with Wordless and Wordful Wednesday … [Read more...]

Family Friday- Baking Day

My boys are growing up so fast!  Matt, our youngest, turned 12 last week!  Yes, twelve!  Unbelievable! As time goes by so quickly, I find that I have to be purposeful about finding activities and things to do with the boys for quality "mama/son" time.  There are so many external things vying for their attention at this age (friends, sports, technology and more). So, today (and Monday) the boys are off of school for some type of EXTENDED Columbus day celebration...all week I have been thinking of things we could do together that would be fun. Here is what is on the agenda (as well as prepare for Matt's birthday party tomorrow, let Jared go on a haunted trail tour with his "girlfriend" and her family and visit with Jason on Sunday after church): Decorate the house for … [Read more...]

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