Category Archives: Life

Breathing Under Water Kind of Day

Today was a pretty good day, despite feeling like I was walking around breathing under water. I am quite certain I am looking at the early stages of a sinus infection. Before I go running to the doctor though, I will try beating it here on my own.  That said this feeling threw a monkey wrench into how I saw my day going.

Last night I wrote that I saw myself waking early to have extra quiet time, and filling my cup before tending to the needs of my family. Silly me though I forgot how my expectations seldom match up with reality. I awoke only minutes before the children, and just as I opened my bible my hubby steps out of the shower and begins talking to me. It is in that moment I decided instead of reading my bible to tend to the family.

This is not to say I neglected my bible, no, I grabbed my phone and listened to the bible app read to me this morning, as I made breakfast and lunch for my darling. As he headed off to work I fed myself and the children. From there I moved slowly through the morning.

Our morning school time was a brief lesson that introduced The American Civil War and what it was over. I loved my oldest’s comment regarding her realization as to what a slave is, “That is NOT awesome.” (Lately everything is either amazing or awesome. So for something to be not awesome is a BIG deal to her.) Anyway our lesson on slavery was followed up by a reading from Little House in the Big Woods. I have to say I love how this book has both my 5- year old and almost 4- year old engaged.

Later in the day I introduced a new series of lessons to my children, but because I still felt like I was breathing under water these lessons were had from the snuggly comfort of my queen size bed. I have to say that is one of the things I love about homeschooling the kids, there is no one size fits all perfect way to do it. We have a classroom we created to use, which we do, but you can just as often find us in the living room, in the kitchen, or maybe snuggled up in Mommy and Daddy’s bed for a lesson.

I think my favorite part of the day though was enjoying a pancake breakfast, for dinner with the family. Yes dinner time here has it’s inherent stressors, “keep your elbows off the table,” “sit up,” “mouth closed,” “elbows,” “eat, just eat, please.” But there is still something sweet about the family sitting down and really enjoying a meal together. Now I can please 5 people with every aspect of a meal, but when I know I have a meal that can at least make everyone smile, I will call that a win.

I hope your day was sweet. That even in the midst of the crazy, the frustrating, and the tiring you had those sweet moments. Those moments that make your soul sing and you can look at and say you know what? Today was a good day.

Good night. Sleep tight. And don’t let the bed bugs bite.

Perfect Storm

Today was the perfect storm of events for a horrible no good very bad day here. It has been a day that has left me drained, depressed, and emotionally rung through the ringer.

It started with no one showing for the Women’s Group I was hoping to lead. Progressing to the realization I had no friend I could call to invite over and commiserate with. It became the kind of morning/ early afternoon I would have just liked to have had a friend to sit down and enjoy a cup of coffee and conversation with.

Instead, it turned into my toddler screaming at me for food and then not wanting to eat what was for lunch. My 3 and 5-year olds fussing over lunch as well. To then being kicked and having my hair pulled because I was trying to next put the toddler in bed. When the tired child finally gave in to the much needed sleep, I looked at the older two and all eyes were closed and breathing regular.  Or so I thought…

I go to lay down and I hear my oldest talking and progressively louder.  I go in the room to tell her to be quiet and not wake her sleeping sisters when I see what just causes me loose it. Now this is not to say I blame the child it is to say in a tired and depressed state I made poor choices. I yelled, I screamed, and handled her far too roughly. And what was this trigger? Darling middle daughter was poking the eye of my sleeping toddler who fought me, quiet literally, to go to sleep.

This lead to a mess of phone calls and messages between my husband and myself, to me spending most of 2.5 hours hiding in my closet. I cried to God, cried to my husband, cried for myself, and at times just cried. The mom guilt was heavy with me. I felt I didn’t deserve my children. I felt they would be better off with just about anyone other than me.

I have to tell you this level of feeling alone, tired, and guilt is not good for anyone. It is draining. When you add in crazy pregnancy hormones and mood swings everything is magnified. If I could have kept perspective through each step then maybe I wouldn’t be getting ready to tell you and my husband good night now. I plan to be in bed before 8:30 here. I plan to rest, re charge my batteries, and perhaps start my day a little earlier tomorrow. That way I can enjoy a few extra moments alone with God before the kids come at me with all their needs. I know if I can fill my cup before I attempt to fill theirs I will be in a better spot tomorrow.

So good night, sleep tight, and don’t let the bed bugs bite.

 

Writing, My Day, and Big News

So I have started and stopped writing here on several occasions. I have had big plans. Now I lay those plans to rest and I purpose just to write. Honestly when I write for viewership, or what I think will be of interest to others it drains me. On the other hand when I write  for myself it refills me. I think part of my problem with starting this blog back up again is not understanding the difference.

Today was a day full of run, run, run. From the moment I got up I knew I had a list that was extensive that I needed to get done. Still I stopped this morning and had a few quiet moments alone with God. In those moments, I found the peace I needed to step forward into my day.

I so appreciated that peace by lunch time, because by then I had done almost a comically long list of tasks. I had set up my five year old with ABCMouse so she could get some school in today. I collected eggs, folded some laundry, found my almost 2-year old eating toothpaste. I think the girls and I picked up the same mess 3 different times. I made breakfast, and had lunch in the works, while I was trying to get us out the door.

See today I had an appointment with a maternal fetal medicine doctor. (Due to personal and family history my OB wants to follow me a little more closely, but did not feel I was high risk.) This appointment meant that not only did I have a 40 minute drive to go see the specialist, I also had to get the kids to the babysitter’s place. Well between my attempts to keep moving us along and mostly I think due to the grace of God I made it to my appointment on time.

In fact when I finally arrived today, they asked if I would mind pushing back my appointment by 15-20 minutes. A lady who had the appointment right after mine, had her husband going into surgery at the same time as her appointment and wanted to be there for him when he went in. I said no problem. I understand. In fact the extra time gave me time to read and breathe.

Overall, my appointment went well. Baby is looking healthy, but is bigger than they were looking for to run some of the tests. So I will need to go back in two weeks so we can run some different tests that look for the same thing, but in a different way. I also received some really exciting news. The ultrasound tech and the doctor both agree that my newest little one will be a boy. The tech said it is still a little early to say with 100% certainty, but she felt that there was, “too much between the legs,” for her to want to say girl.

So finally after three girls our family will be welcoming a little boy. We are excited, because he will be a welcome change. I love the pink and girly but I am ready for something different. Rusty is excited that he will no longer be quite so out numbered. In the end though if for some reason the doctor and the tech are wrong we will be still happy to welcome more pink into our world.

The rest of my day was a flurry of getting the kids, going to speech therapy, making dinner, bed time routines, and fussy babes. So then for me to say at this point I am exhausted and thankful for stillness, feels like an understatement.

Good night.

 

 

More to Learn

This weekend I didn’t get as much done around here as I could have. The only project I helped with didn’t see my help till it was almost done. If you had stopped by last night around 9 pm, you would have found me standing in a large fish tank, attempting to smooth wrinkles in the lining, as the garden hose filled it. See the husband has been working on developing an aquaponics gardening system for the large green house and I was doing my part to help out last night.

More to Learn

The hubby busy building and assembling the fish tank.

The only other major things I did around the house this weekend involved my kitchen, the cooking and cleaning of it. Well that and cupcakes. My sweet sister-in-law turned 20 and I made red velvet cheesecake stuffed cupcakes for her.

See the reason I didn’t step outside the kitchen much and do more work around the property is simple, I stepped outside the kitchen and did something better with my time. I chose to spend time with the Lord. “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”  Luke 10: 41-42 See this weekend I was a little more Mary and a little less Martha. I chose what was better. I chose to spend time with my Lord, learning about my Lord, deepening my walk with him, and walking away refreshed. I went to a women’s conference hosted by my church. The topic: Walking In Faith.

I learned many things, and I was reminded of many things. You are never too old or too young to be used by the Lord. We just need to ask the Holy Spirit  to come and do work in our lives. Don’t judge who you are, by how you are. In other words our worth is not defined by our choices or our circumstances, but rather by the love of our Creator. And those are just a couple of the nuggets that touched my heart.

Shirt design by NBT

Shirt design by NBT

Through out this confrence I was also challenged to let go of stress. One of the fruits of the spirit is joy. Laughter is a by product of joy, and you can not hold on to stress and laugh. To take this idea further the speaker offered some points to help you, “Be Up In A Down World.”

  1. Pay attention to the world around you, God’s beauty is everywhere.
  2. Listen. People in our lives need us to listen.
  3. Learn. Read. Discover New things.
  4. Want to feel better? Laugh.
  5. Ask for help. Lean on one another. (Or as I heard someone else say once, don’t stand in the way of your own blessings.)
  6. Love. We all could use more love.

As the confrence wrapped up and I was listening to the closing music and reflecting on what the Lord laid upon my heart, I penned my final thoughts.

I need more laughter in my life.
I need less computer.
I need more God.
I need less stress.
I need more patience.
I need less tv.
I need more books.
I need less busy.

*** What is it that you could use more or less of in your life?***

***As always if this post has touched you in anyway please feel free to share it, you never know who else in your life might benefit from reading this today. All I as is that you would link back to the original post. Thank you.***

Fruit of The Spirit: What is Joy?

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law” Galations 5:22

“But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful.” Psalm 68:3

What is Joy

The Lord calls to his people and tells them to be joyful, to be full of joy, but what is joy? A simple search of the bible leads to 242 references to joy. Realizing this it can become rather overwhelming to dissect what is joy.

This can be further complicated with a simple search around the web.

Webster’s Dictionary defines joy as:

 

  1.  a:  the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires : delight b:  the expression or exhibition of such emotion :  gaiety
  2. a:  a state of happiness or felicity :  bliss
  3. a:  a source or cause of delight

 

DL Moody is quoted as saying, “Joy is love exalted; peace is love in repose; long-suffering is love enduring; gentleness is love in society; goodness is love in action; faith is love on the battlefield; meekness is love in school; and temperance is love in training.”

The more you dive in quotes the more complicated and messy it seems to get. A look at Websters or a Google search for quotes on joy seem to give the impression that joy is happiness. A look at the quote from DL Moody or even a look at all the various scripture verses containing joy seem to give another picture.

This other picture indicates joy is deeper, and more than a feeling.  It would indicate that the Lord is calling us to experience something deeper than a feeling. The Lord is calling us to a joy that radiates out from us no matter our circumstances, meaning even during times of trouble we will still be a joyful people. (James 1:2)

***When you think of joy what are some verses or quotes best exemplify joy? Or perhaps how would you best define joy?***

****As always feel free to share, but please link back to the original post. Here is last week’s post Loving Your Neighbor, if you missed it.****

 

 

 

Fruit of the Spirit: Loving Your Neighbor

Who is your neighbor? Look around. See that person sitting across from you? They are your neighbor. That lady who takes care of your children in day care? She is your neighbor. That person who just gets under your skin? They are your neighbor too. Every one who is not the Lord or you, is your neighbor. So when in Matthew 22: 36-40, Jesus says, “To love your neighbor as yourself.” These are the people he has in mind, who ever it is that you interact with and in within your sphere of influence.

Fruit of the Spirit: Love Your Neighbor

Jesus further addresses the issue of who is our neighbor in the tale of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10 25-37.) He further points out that not only who is our neighbor but how we must act to be considered a neighbor, ourselves. We need to reach out and help those in need.

This is not a post to tell you, that you need to donate more money to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital, or that you need to go on a mission’s trip halfway around the world. Or even anything else that could be considered big. While the grande acts are helpful, and even worthy to consider, this is not what I want to reflect on. I want us to look at the small everyday things we could be doing to help those in need.

Consider for a moment the homeless you see daily (in some parts of the country.) Are you meeting their gaze and treating them like human beings? Or do you divert your eyes and pretend they don’t even exist? Have you ever considered offering them a sandwich or fruit? I even once offered to take one young woman to the grocery store to buy the things she said she didn’t have the money for. It wasn’t much, but if she had taken me up on my offer it would have been food for her kid’s lunches. Helping them can be simply recognizing they exist, and seeing if you could help them find their way to a shelter or a program, where you know the people really care.

Or consider the young military wife and mother in your community. Chances are when her husband deploys, if she stays in the area, she will need help at some point and will not have family to lean on in the area. Don’t just give a general well I am here if you need me. While she might appreciate the offer, most these ladies are tough and don’t know who is willing to help. Instead call her up this week and tell her you are willing to babysit for a couple of hours. She can nap, go get her nails done, clean the house, or maybe just grocery shop without little extra hands. Those precious moments when another set of hands is there to help will help her to feel that she is connected and people care. And trust me she needs that. Then again if babysitting is not your thing maybe you could arrange to bless her with a meal she didn’t have to cook.

When was the last time you reached out to the new people at church? It doesn’t matter if it turns out they aren’t that new, still reach out. Introduce yourself. Meet new people. You never know what it will mean exactly to the person you are reaching out to. That person could be the painfully shy type and have no idea how to reach out to meet new people. Your introduction might be just what they need to start meeting their new community.

These are just a few scenarios. My point in these is this: think outside the box. Who can you help? Whose walk needs shoveling? Who could use a meal ministry this week? Who simply needs you to say hello? Reach out and act with loving respect and be the neighbor you were called to be.

***What are some ideas you have on how to bless those around you?***

***If this post has touched you in any way please feel free to share this post. The only thing I ask is to please back to the original. And as always feel free to share via social media. If you have missed any of my prior posts in this series you can find them here : IntroductionLove Your GodLove Your Wives, Submitting To And Respecting Our Husbands, and Love Your Children.*** 

Fruit of the Spirit: Submitting To And Respecting Our Husbands

“Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.” Ephesians 5:22-24

“… and the wife must respect her husband.” Ephesians 5: 33b

Submitting to And Respecting Your Husbands

There it is two of the hottest and scariest topics to ever bring up in conversation in this culture, especially if you adhere to those ideas. A couple of weeks ago a friend and I were talking and I said, “Yes I am all for submission in marriage.” That is a far as I could get and her eyes got wide, and her jaw dropped, just a little. I could read her face that she had whole host of things to say in response, but before she could get there I stopped a moment and asked her to hear me out follow me with this a moment and that is what I am asking you to do. Follow me with this a moment and if you disagree or have questions when I am done I  am here to listen.

You are also probably wondering how these topics relate to love and ultimately fruit of the spirit. It is my sincere and heart-felt belief that it is through submission and respect toward our husbands that we demonstrate the kind of love that God is calling us toward in our marriages. I understand in this modern age we want to be independent woman. We want to be strong. We want to have it all, and we want to prove we are equal to men. These verses apply to even the most independent and modern of women today. God is not calling us to a position of weakness, but rather love and honor.

I heard someone talk about submission once in the context of the military chain of command. Imagine for the moment that God has made your husband the captain, or the CO, of your household, and you, the wife, second in command or the XO. Does your husband’s position negate the authority of yours? No, you are still a strong capable woman who has years of experience that you bring to this position. You are the one he can trust to take care of things in his stead. You are the one he can turn to, to help him sort through difficult decisions. Your husband may even defer to your expertise in many areas of decision-making. But the Lord has said that as the husband he is still the head of the household.

What does that mean then? It means as the CO he is responsible for the decisions of the household, even if he deferred to your best judgement. He will be the one held accountable for the decisions of the household, even if you make them together. So when I say I submit to your husbands this is what I am saying, “Let him lead. Provide wise counsel, but let him lead.” You married this man. Trust him. Trust his judgement. Believe in him.

Now I am not saying to let him lead you down the path of sin. You know what sin is, and you know how God feels about sin. God is an even higher authority than anyone here on earth. So as long as your husband’s leading lines up with scripture: Follow. So you if you two are disagreeing over say paint colors and not with issues of sin follow your husband’s lead.

As the XO of our household’s it is also our responsibility to be respectful toward our husband’s. Now some of you may be arguing right about now that my husband doesn’t deserve my respect. When he acts in a particular way then I will so him respect. If we refer back to Ephesians 5:33 we will see that we are not told to  respect our husbands some of the time, when we feel like it, or even when he earns our respect. The wife is told to respect her husband, no conditions or pre-requisites, just unconditional respect.

What does that look like? It looks like no longer airing his ‘offenses’ to any and every listening ear. It means standing up for him when someone asks well how do you possibly deal with that sort of behavior. (He is a grown man, capable of making his own decisions, and he just likes to have fun.) It means extending him trust. Respect is bragging about his accomplishments and working together behind the scenes to fix the rough patches. It means stop nagging, and start asking. It means all that and so much more.

Ladies what can you do today that would be a little more respectful than you did yesterday? In what ways could you let your husband lead the household a bit more?

*** If you have missed any of the prior discussions in this series you can find them here: IntroductionLove Your God, and Love Your Wives . As always please feel free to share the posts, just remember to link back to the original. You never know who will be blessed because you shared this.***

 

 

Creative K Kids

Confessional Time: Instead of A Recipe A Glimpse Into Our (Sorta) Farm Life.

Alright it is confessional time. I had big plans of sharing a recipe for you today, but alas with the weekend that I had it did not come together. Honestly I barely had time to cook. We had 1 home cooked dinner in 4 nights, and 2 of those nights we had Little Caesar’s Pizza. So instead of  sharing a recipe or something for the kids with you today I decided to show you what the hubby and I have been up to for the last 3 days.

***What did you do with your weekend?***

I Might Be Stuck For Words, But I Still Want to Encourage You.

I have writer’s block this writing thing is no fun at the moment. Heck, I was struggling at the end of November. I was hoping a one month break I would be able to walk away recharge and come back ready to pour forth more encouragement and love, instead I feel more drained than ever. I feel like I have less to give than when December began. I have sat down to write or rather try to write multiple times. The words do not want to come. I feel them locked away somewhere in my brain, but there they sit, waiting. Waiting to be unleashed. Waiting to be given life.

I might be stuck for words, but I still want to encourage you.

I want to encourage you to grow in your walk with the Lord. I want to encourage the stressed out mother, that everything will be alright and provide practical solutions, but I only can muster one word, “Breathe.” I have to tell myself that every time I take the kids to the store, and every day my nerves get frazzled. I am no expert, though, on the best ways to handle stress, so when I sit down to write I get lost in remembering all my mistakes.

I yell. I scream. I disengage. I guilt. I sulk. I whine. I cry. I pout. I don’t make enough time to be that always present parent. There are days I need to drag my butt out of bed and remind myself as I am doing so that, “Yes, the kids would like to eat.” Heck half the time I write I think I am writing to myself. So there you go, now you have it the truth is not pretty. I am not a mother who has it all together. Most days I feel like I am just treading water.

Rusty will tell me how I am wonderful. He will sing my praises all day long, I love him for it. He sees the best in me. I see a woman who wants to hide away and be lazy and how if I better managed my days how I could do so much more. He sees a woman who does it all.  I am thankful for that. Some days it helps to know that someone believes in you.

So I guess after all this rambling, I do have a bit of encouragement to offer. I love you friend. I am here for you. I am here to pray with you if you need prayer. Most of all not only am I in your corner, so is the Lord. He is rooting for you. He wants you to succeed. He sees the best in you. Most of all he loves you so much, that if you were the only lost soul in the world he still would have sent his son to die for you. Turn to him today and have a heart-to-heart, I know I will.

***I know I talked about on Facebook about writing about stress or the fruit of the spirit, but right now those words are not flowing. I will continue to work on the prep for those and when the words do flow, my dear readers, you will be the first to know.***