Sunday, May 30, 2010

In Heaven...

We've been praying and waiting since I posted about our friend. There was good news. She was responding to stimuli.

And then Bad news. They had to remove her feeding tube because of fluid in her lungs. She's not having good nights.

And then good news again. Lungs are clear. She's having good days and nights.

Everything seemed to be in a holding pattern.

Early Saturday morning, our friend went to be in Heaven.

It was a sad talk with Mini-Me. But it was good to rehearse the goodness of God.
How God had moved in our friend's life. How the months we knew her were fantastic months.

How amazing it would be to go from a new level of freedom on earth - to complete and utter freedom in Heaven.

Thank you for praying for us.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

He Never Lets Go

I realize our struggles may not seem like much in the big scheme of life.

We have not had to bury a loved one before it was their time to go.
We have not been persecuted for our faith.
The Professor still has a job.
However, our struggles and our trials are just as real and affect us just as intensely.

We have been under attack since we celebrated Passover.
It's been one struggle after another.

Even though The Professor has a job, his supervisor is actively working to torment him. It's like watching Potiphar's wife wrongly accuse Joseph. (Yes. I can use that analogy because I KNOW my husband is a "Joseph" in his field.)

We've watched our cost of living expenses grow and them tell us that they can't give us pay raises because of the unstable economy. (they are making money.)

We've found ourselves severely isolated.

and growing more so. It's hard not to become insular when the world seems to be ignoring you.

I've had to battle for my thoughts like I've never had to fight before...
I've felt like the ground was shifting under my feet.
It feels like I'm going backward and having to fight things that are supposed to be dead.
Stress has been hard on our family.

It's been hard because I KNOW that we are Kingdom People.
With a King that has a very stable economy.
Yet. He seems very silent of late.

I had started dreaming again - and now it feels like I'm back on the shelf. With dormant or dead dreams.

Again, I utter my disclaimer, Our struggles may not be considered huge to someone looking in...and that's fine. They are our struggles.

There's more...I could go on...but I won't. This season, since Passover,  is why the blog has been so very quiet. Writing, my best outlet, has been hard. Difficult to the point that It feels like a dying dream. Like my other dreams. It has been a struggle and I am weary.

Yesterday, I woke up with the chorus in my head "Oh, no - you never let go. Through the calm and through the storm..." "....You never let go of me"

So when I heard a song again - after weeks of silence - I appreciated it. I tipped my heart in, but refused to allow myself to go fully into the moment.

I am raw.

Last night was the celebration for the End of AWANA at our Wednesday night church. The kids have worked so hard on their books. Mostly by themselves - and they earned their badges.

What song do they sing as one of the three songs for worship before the ceremony?
The song that was whispered to me that morning.

I am so glad to hear it....So glad to have AbbaDaddy tell me, He never let go. Even though it felt like He had.

The struggles aren't over...Far from it.
It's nice to have a Kiss in the midst of it.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Average Mom: The Pool Chronicle

I am not June Cleaver. (Gag)
I'm not even Mrs. Huxtable.

I am Average Mom.

My current Nemesis: The soft-sided pool and four children who don't often get along.

Trust me. The following is the condensed version.

I found it at Academy for $80. It's 12' diameter by 30" deep. To get wet the big kids have to lay down. But at least they have room to do that....the laying down.

We've had it for three days.
And I'm starting to hate it.

I've asked several times "Who's idea was this?" and then remembered it was mine. Mine because I didn't want to take the kids to the pool. The actual pool where J-man drank too much pool water while he bobbed in a life jacket under the seat of a lifeguard as I was tending to Bubbles.  The pool where there has to be three of us go to the potty when one of them has to go. Heaven forbid the Mommy need to potty.

This looked perfect. The little kids could stand and not get their heads wet.

Ugh. The excitement started as we put it together. They were EVER so helpful. OVERLY so.
To get this thing ready to swim, as you add water, someone (me) has to get in and stretch out the bottom as it fills. This is to get the bottom flat to aid cleaning and to help the pool get to the full size of 12' in diameter. I forgot I had my cellphone in my pocket.

But after the endless questions of "What are you doing""When can we swim" "What are you doing" "When can we swim" "can I get in" "I want to get in"... I was cranky. I'm sure the neighbors think I'm a shrew.

Sunday came. Day One of swimming readiness. The kids started asking at 7am if they could swim. I told the Professor (The resident morning person) to just stick them in the cold shower. It would be the same.

But we let them swim later in the morning from 10-ish until lunch. Then Bubbles and The professor hit their respective beds and the three bigs hit the water again. (I forgot to reapply sun screen. Sunburn whining came that night and the next day).

The water is not big enough to dive in - but it is be enough for a 9year old to act like a breaching whale. Between the two swim times, I don't know how many times I had to intervene. Stop them from drowning each other. Tell Mini-me she didn't have to take "that". Lay ground rules. Order time outs. And get ignored. Repeatedly.

By the time it was time for them to get out, have a snack and get ready for church, I had had it.
I told the Professor, who greeted us all with happy smiles,  "NO WONDER You think I'm stressed all the time. I have to deal with stuff like THAT and then you get to be the GOOD COP!!"

I'm fairly certain the neighbors think I'm a witch of the first order.

And I might just be.

Today I watched them ignore each other and then suddenly have splashing fits in anger.
For such a nice person, I'm a really mean mom. I'm fairly certain the neighbor heard my tirade on the issue of double standardness (It's Okay for you to splash them in the 'eye ball' but it's not okay for them to splash you?!?)

The only good thing - ONLY good thing to come of this pool -- J-man is going under and holding his breath quite a lot. No more water fear for him. Now. Bubbles on the other hand likes to sit and scream orders at me. Demands like:
"Teach me how to hold my breath" (which is pointless because she can't stick her face in the water)
"Then put your face in the water. It's the first step!"
"I CAAAAAAAAAAN'T!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

"Then I'm sorry."I Head back to my chair.
No sooner had I sat back down than she shrieks.... "I WANT TO GO UNDER WATER!!"

I was so close to dunking her.
Still may. It's a long summer. And we're only into day three of this escapade.
I won't be winning "Mom of the Year award". Ever.

There's no category for 'average mom: child dunker'.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Speak With Authority

This stirs me up and makes me laugh.
A very good combo.

Or if you want to see his face while he talks:

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Interesting quote of the day....

The power went off this morning at 4:45 am. It was a surprise, as I'd not known there was a reason for the power to go out. I sleep with a fan, and if the fan goes off, my eyes open. After the power went off, I heard the thunder and the wind. I heard the arc and noise of a downed power line or a broken transformer. Which is odd because our neighborhood has underground cables.

I went looking for the noise. It might have been a broken tornado siren. There was that moment when the wind died down all of a sudden....and that's never a good thing around here.

When the power came back on, I went back to sleep. The Professor called to let me know that there was damage from high speed winds. Could I check on the roof?

So I did. Our house is fine. Other houses seemed to have lost tree limbs and a few shingles.

We went driving to see the damage done, to get a picture, We stayed on main streets and saw many signs broken and many tree limbs down. We stopped at Sonic to find that their sign was busted. We got our drinks.

Came home.

J-man says "I don't like 7-up burps. They sting my nose."

I adore that kid.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

And now for some nonesense....

Gotta have some nonsense now and again....

You Are Unpretentious and Honest

You're quite happy with who you are, and you never pretend to be someone you're not.

You just act naturally. It's what works best for you, and you're comfortable with who you are.

You like people when they're just being themselves. Nothing turns you off more quickly than a phony.

You don't like it when other people want you to measure up to their standards. You should be enough as is.

You Are Emotional

You are dependable, popular, and observant.

Deep and thoughtful, you are prone to moodiness.

In fact, your emotions tend to influence everything you do.

You are unique, creative, and expressive.

You don't mind waving your freak flag every once and a while.

And lucky for you, most people find your weird ways charming!

You Act Like You Are 18 Years Old

You are a teenager at heart. You don't quite feel like a grown up yet, but you don't feel like a kid.

You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.

You're quite rebellious, and you don't like being told what to do. You like to do things your way.

You have your own unique style, taste in music, and outlook on life.

You Are a Sugar Glider

You are both cute and active. You are very curious about the world around you.

People may find that you are a bit quirky and offbeat, but you are truly very intelligent.

You are very social, and you bring a playful element to every occasion.

You are easygoing and not at all aggressive. You only will act to defend yourself.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

We talked....

It's interesting how resilient children are. They survive parenting by mortal humans (though may require deliverance from God later) and usually they're pretty happy about it.

Mini-Me and I talked about our friend. Today we found out that the doctor isn't holding out much hope for long term recovery - but we know how wrong the doctor can be. He's only human after all. I've been up front and honest with Mini-Me about the news. I'm letting her read the e-mails as they come to in box.

Today, the e-mail said that perhaps it wasn't a stroke after all but seizures.
she asked "What's a seizure?" I told her to the best of my ability -- and she said, "So it's like getting a charlie horse in your head?"

Something like that.

You know what I've noticed?

Her faith is amazing. She doesn't realize that's what it is - but it is faith. Pure and simple.

Thank you all for your comments and encouragement. I truly felt good and hugged - She received and understood. Now we just wait and see. Wait and pray.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Not looking forward to it...

Sometimes, the lessons of life are just too difficult to learn.

We got word yesterday that a friend from our small church had been taken into the hospital. At the time we had no idea what was wrong. She's 41. And actually she's more of a friend to Mini-Me than she is to me. Mostly because I spend most of my time chasing down fights among the little kids.

We prayed for our friend last night before bed and it was not long before Mini-me comes traipsing back to ask about her.

This morning I'm faced with the chore to tell her that her friend has been termed "Brain Dead".

I KNOW God is more than enough. I Know that He's capable of raising people from the dead. Does it shake my faith when He doesn't do it? No. Because it doesn't shake who He is.

What it does is shake my understanding. I don't understand. And Mini-Me will only see that she's lost another friend. That makes me saddest of all. I hate that my kids have to learn that sometimes life just sucks.

As a parent, even here in the Laundry Pile, we want to protect the kids from the harsher realities of life. Then comes the time when they come right in our faces. Then comes the trick.

How to teach the kids how to praise in the middle of the storm.
I know enough about God to know that He did not cause the sickness -- but that doesn't mean He can't use it to be Glorified. Which is what we want now...

I want my kids to see God glorified even when life sucks.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Question every thing??

Mini-Me questions everything. And it's not that she's asking "Why?" or anything...
she's just full of questions.

Which, if you think about it, is probably better than some things..

The "Give Blood" billboard brought the question "Can someone have too much blood?" - The answer is yes. we asked a nurse. It's rare...but it does happen. And you can also have too little.

Then there's the "What happens if tidal waves hit each other?"
um -- they make a big splash? we talked about waves and how I don't think they'd actually "hit" each other...but it's not exactly a question I can google. I tried.

"When does the next century start?"
Seriously. My first thought was "For who?"

"WHY do I have to study health and anatomy?"
The Professor's answer was "Because I had to."

Then there are the questions like:
"Why are siblings soooo annoying?"

I may have to start making up answers.