Saturday, November 28, 2009

We headed west to my brother and SIL's home sweet home for our Thanksgiving Day celebration. My husband, myself, children, and a student from Jeremy's school piled in the truck and traveled for a 3.5 hour drive. We were smushed, but the drive wasn't too bad. :) All parents know what I mean by just smiling don't you? "How much longer?" "Are we almost there?" "I have to go to the bathroom." Oh yes, we had all that and got to practice the art of being patient as our legs and arms collided, and voices joined together in an enclosed vehicle.

But it was worth it.

Bannon and Reese
Jake and his cherished drumstick

Enjoying a traditional Thanksgiving meal

And this is posted with a smile. There is a little person just out of sight who was not real happy at this moment. :)

Isn't he so cute?

Audrey, the camera inquisitor.

This child was a bit beside herself, and was singing, wiggling, barely containing her excitement as her cousin serenaded us with songs we love so much. And this pig in her arms, is now in our possesion :) It is almost REAL.
Singing You Believed in Me

And so Thanksgiving 2009 has passed, spent with family, a friend, plus all the bigger and little people brought into the world by the married people :) Everyone passed the time watching movies, playing video and computer games, playing dress up, playing...well I don't know what. That is after all a lot of children to follow after. But it was mostly blissful for them. I promise you that. It was loud and busy, BUT fun.
Having all my children home for the holiday, and traveling in close quarters has given opportunities to work on living together when things don't always seem fair or perfect for our comfort. Teaching my kids to get along again has been full of lessons for me personally. If I don't get it...then how can I expect them to?
Romans 12: 9 Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.
(in another translation it says "without hypocrisy") and
verse 21
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
It is so important for me, and each of my children to be soaking in His goodness and love, so that we have the same to give away to one another. Overcoming evil with good tends to go against our flesh. But His ways are good ways. I love the fruit of His ways. The wonderful thing is, knowing that as we surrender to Him in all things, He fills up the circumstances with His love, His will, His kingdom. That's what I call "relaxing in my faith." :)
So, I hope to be an overcomer. May they learn too.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving Hands

This was a craft we did when my first three were in their early years. Hannah came home yesterday and said, "Oh...I remember doing this!"

We raided the cupboards for all sorts of dried things (popcorn, crackers, beans, rice, marshmallows, and cranberries), drew some turkeys, got out the glue, and bing! fun! :)

The pieces of dried materials are best kept in bowls, but it is still messy.

Monday, November 23, 2009

"Worship with My Life"

Psalm 143:8 Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you.

Joining with the hearts of other worshippers, expressing my heart's thankfulness to my Father, seemed to be right to start Thanksgiving week.

1. The priceless gift of friendship that loves a person for who they are...and even in spite of who they are.

2. The example of children who love, forgive, and live without thought of tomorrow.

3. turkey dinner with a friend, warm fire, Christmas movies, Waltons

4. a little man with a heart to serve

5. A man to love who gives in so many unspoken ways. God sees, God knows, and that's what matters.

6. warm bodies that fill my mornings with hugs

7. The Lover of my soul who works even when I have lost the strength.

8. beautiful starry November skies, seen as I lay down at nighttime.

9. a loving God that is ever near every time I call

10. right words, at the right time

and to see more, plus the songwriter who began it all go here:

holy experience

Thursday, November 12, 2009

With All We Got

After chasing Bella off the stairs for the nth time the other night, Jeremy, smiling, reminded me that 1.5 year olds are good for mama's getting their exercise. Sitting and blogging is...shhhh....relaxing! :) The pictures are quiet and bring back the beautiful moments of the between the busyness of the moments.... that happen and make life interesting, challenging, and keeps this mama on her toes! I wouldn't trade it though. My life and very person is changed in all the right areas. It also shows me how far I need to grow.

Abby putting together pattern blocks.

Bella stacking cans.

Sophie helped to make her birthday cake. She has, ever since she has been physically able to do it, pulled up a chair or stool alongside to whomever is cooking to be a help any way she can :) Even on her birthday.

While I was up to my elbows making the pizza dough, Bella was getting into the baking cabinet....and dumped the baking soda on the floor...

and walked in it making footprints across the kitchen floor!

Bella is kinda famous in our home right now. She is cute and ready to hug and play with any friendly person. We all relax when she lays her head on our shoulders. It's wonderful.

And Sophie obviously eats her up. We took streams of pictures of Sophie on her birthday. It was all so magical to her. Simple needs, simple delights. Hanging her balloons caused her to dance and jump.

Her requested dinner of pizza, salad, and juice in the SPECIAL cup.

One of her gifts was her own tablet of paper and fingerpaints. After the cake, singing, and present opening, she and Daddy sat at the table alone, being creative and enjoying the squish of fingerpaints.

The day finished with tired bodies, who didn't nap, crashing into bed without difficulty. Myself included.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Looking at the Past, Vision into the Future

The oldest three were invited by their Grandma and Chance to visit our state's museum. They love going there. They brought along the camera and took some pictures of themselves goofy and not so goofy. I love these people. It is weird that they are already as tall as me, if not taller. They are young. We hug, feed them...change their diapers ;). Then they grow up into these... people. Warm, funny, caring, smart, and yes, imperfect...but people in our lives with worth. Worth the time, worth the money, worth the preference in priority.

These two...gifted. Analytical, investigating, inquisitive, looking into new frontiers....AND sweet.
These two, too. :) perceptive, ready to laugh and engage you through the medium of words, music and art.

Riding a pretend subway.


Get off the display! yells the mom in me.

And this is my husband. I usually go into hiding when he gets creative like this. Target practice. Poor pumpkin.

Friday, November 6, 2009

The How's and the God Help Me's

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. ~an English and Chinese Proverb

It is so simple when they are little. "Because Mom said so," is an easy enough answer to young minds. They need to learn obedience and develop a teachable spirit. But then they grow and ask to understand beyond the, "because Mom said so," and seek for understanding to the "said so's." As I have looked into my own thoughts and reasons behind what I believe in, it has prompted me into a journey of more serious prayer, Bible understanding, and looking at the fruit of the lives who have walked this way before me. This includes the fruit in my own life as a young person raised in the Lord, who grew into the person I am now, by fellowshiping with the Lord through my growing up.

And while I am enthusiastic about my discoveries, I do seem to find my teens are not open buckets into which I can pour my discoveries and opinions into whenever I get fired up about something. They are their own personalities, and the Lord is walking them through their own journeys, and the needed information is to be watered upon their lives when they are ready. If I am pushing and smushing them into a certain mask, I see they either aren't ready to apply their hearts to the discussion, or it is causing them to feel stifled. I don't like the fruit from that approach. It rears its head as judgementalism, rebellion, or even legalism. They do so much better when Jeremy and I take the time to talk and walk along the way with us. Whether they are in public school or homeschooled, heart to heart discussions and TIME together, seem to be so important in the growing up of these young people. Hannah and I have had the most open hearted talks when we go for our neighborhood walks. I am learning to let go of those things which aren't labeled as a "have to" in the scriptures, and just discussing God's heart towards the many issues they face and see in their generation. The subjects range from politics, careers/ministry, relationships, family, character, books, movies, and music.

I guess, what I am saying is that if Jeremy and I can help them have relationship with their SOURCE, the "said so's" will mean less, and they will learn to sort things out as they understand God's heart towards all these things. There are movies, books, and music that they have read/watched/listened to, that I wouldn't have thought we would have allowed. They aren't on their own with all this, it's just Jeremy and I don't want to create something as being a sin, when God hasn't called it so. It seems to be a matter of teaching them to look at things in the light of, "How will this affect my heart and relationship with God?" Teaching them how to "fish" or how to talk to God for themselves through prayer, Bible reading, and relationships that help them grow in this area is what they need. Of course, their enthusiastic mom isn't going anywhere either...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

His Love is the Sparkle

35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? 36 (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”) 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,
neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

and right before this Romans 8:28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Daniel 3:16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego replied, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you. 17 If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. 18 But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”

25 “Look!” Nebuchadnezzar shouted. “I see four men, unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed! And the fourth looks like a god!”
26 Then Nebuchadnezzar came as close as he could to the door of the flaming furnace and shouted: “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out! Come here!”
So Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego stepped out of the fire. 27 Then the high officers, officials, governors, and advisers crowded around them and saw that the fire had not touched them. Not a hair on their heads was singed, and their clothing was not scorched. They didn’t even smell of smoke!

*What is wonderful, restful, and peace filling these days, is not that I am free of trials, sickness, difficulties and need. But a very real Saviour, seen in the personhood of Jesus among the multitudes, is right beside me, and because I know He is there, I am not alone. He walks with me, and talks with me.