Monday, October 11, 2010

October already?

Cannot believe how fast this year is flying. Just 2 more months (and 11 days), and we'll have lived in this house an entire year! It doesn't seem possible.

 The kids are on their second (and last) week of fall break, and Brian is taking the week off from work as well. Tomorrow is Halle's 12th birthday; she hasn't told me yet where she wants her birthday dinner to be. We'll have a small celebration tomorrow evening, then Friday night she is having a few friends from church come over to make pizzas, decorate chef's aprons, and spend the night.

That reminds me that I let Joel's birthday slip by without a post to remember it by. (Bad mama!)  He turned 10 on Sept. 15. We need to remember to take him over to the post to get an ID made now that he is "legal." (I wonder why they picked 10 as the age to get a military ID?) With Brian home for the week, we should be able to get that taken care of this week.

I'm getting used to having the kids gone during the day. I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy some of the quiet with them gone, but I also find myself missing homeschooling and wondering if I will ever get to do it again. I certainly am not being as productive as I thought I might be with them away. (Bad mama!)  One thing I am doing is attending one of the ladies' Bible studies at church. There is a small group of us meeting on Tuesday mornings working through Beth Moore's study on Revelation.

The kids are doing well in school. They each had an overall percentage average in the 90s (that's all subjects averaged together). At parent-teacher conferences, I heard high praise for them all. Halle's teacher said she would love to have a room full of Halles, that it would make her days so enjoyable and easy. The boys' teachers each said they appreciated their behavior; no troublemakers here!

Guess it is time to start thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas. I'd like to host the family here for Thanksgiving (our first one here in our new home!) and hopefully for Christmas as well. It just makes sense, since we have the space. I'd better get crackin' coming up with gift ideas as well. I guess one advantage of the kids being gone during the day is that it will be easier to shop and wrap!

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Simple Woman's Daybook, Sept. 4, 2010


Outside my window... the sun is shining and it's beginning to feel like fall. Cool, crisp mornings that make me think of apple pies, leaves to jump in, and a hot cup of tea or cocoa.

I am thinking... of what I might do today. Watch some movies with the kids, a little laundry, ???

I am thankful for... my husband, who works so hard so that I can be here at home with our family. I don't tell him enough.

From the kitchen... Something quick and easy, since it's just me and the kids today. Probably pizzas or pancakes.

I am wearing... something comfortable and casual to hang around the house in.

I am creating... a home for my family.

I am going... to get to see old friends tomorrow. One of my friends from Omaha has taken a job here and is moving in this weekend!

I am reading... Out Live Your Life, Max Lucado. Have to get busy and read more if I am going to get the review up on the 10th!

I am hoping... we can have fun around the house today without making a huge mess. I hate cleaning.

I am hearing... Not a whole lot. It is fairly quiet here in the office and the TV isn't turned up loud enough in the other room for me to hear it.

Around the house... I am enjoying how clean it looks and feels after the cleaning ladies finished with it yesterday. 

One of my favorite things... Not having to run all over town getting things done. I really do like staying at home. I love being with people, but I don't like being overly busy.

A few plans for the rest of the week: The usual trips to and from school every day; Sports physical for Noah (he is going to be on his school's basketball team!); a Pampered Chef party at a friend's house; my mom coming to visit next weekend.

Friday, August 27, 2010


So much going on since my last post... A month of school down and just 5 more weeks to go until the kids get a 2-week fall break. I'm not sure which of us is looking forward to it more!  I am still trying to figure out what my routines will be while they are in school during the day. I have had many unexpected things come up that have made keeping a routine difficult for me. Last week, I came down with bronchitis. The first day, I could barely hold my head up. I had to ask Emily to pick up her brothers and sister from school. The next few days, I felt better, but still had little energy to do anything. We've been looking for a new housecleaning service, and one day was spent waiting for the crew to show up to clean... they were much later than they should have been and I wound up asking my sister to get the kids from school because they were still here (I don't want to risk leaving the dogs alone with them... just in case one was to get spooked and react adversely.)

At any rate, I have much I'd like to accomplish.  I have stacks and shelves of homeschool books and supplies that I no longer need. They are taking up valuable space here in the office. I need to sort through them and figure out which books I am keeping (ones I want to save for future grandkids) and which I need to sell. Once I get these off the shelves (and floor), I will have space for other books that I've had to keep stacked or boxed somewhere.

The other exceedingly large task that has been waiting for me for several years is getting all of the pictures we have organized and scrapbooked. I have thousands of hard copies just screaming to be taken care of; these photos date all the way back to Emily's early years. Then there are the digital photos on CDs, DVDs, or hard drives needing to be handled. I'd like to set up a place where I can start work on this project. It will probably have to be in the sitting area of our bedroom; either that, or in the bonus room upstairs. Either way will necessitate finding some kind of storage or organizational furniture/equipment to hold the supplies and photos.

Not of lesser importance, but possibly lesser urgency, there is the continued decorating of the house. We'd really like to change the color of the walls in our family and living rooms. They are so light that the house just doesn't seem as warm and inviting as I'd like it to. We recently made an addition to the furniture in the formal living room, and I think it helped the room not seem so barren as it did when it just contained the sofa and love seat. A change in wall color would complete the room, I believe. Here's a picture I took:

Once we change the wall color, I'd like to have a quote added to the wall over the piano. A dear friend sent me this quote about 5 years ago, and I have kept it ever since: Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. I think it would be a perfect complement to the piano. (BTW, if you hadn't already guessed, that was the recent addition; my brother-in-law no longer wanted his piano and offered it to us at a very good price. It's nice for Halle to be playing on a real piano rather than a digital one now.)

So now comes the task of figuring out what to do first. These are the times I like a little company. Some things are just more enjoyable when shared, don't you think? Come on over; I'll make a pot of coffee.

Monday, August 02, 2010

Simple Woman's Daybook, 8/2/2010

FOR TODAY, AUGUST 2, 2010...

Outside my window... it's a beautiful day, but WAY too hot to be outside. 

I am thinking... and wondering when the men in the family will be home from their afternoon at the Space and Rocket Center. They wanted to catch the Star Wars exhibit before it leaves next month.

I am thankful for... air conditioning! Seriously...  But also that my kids enjoyed their first ever (half-) day of school-away-from-home and are looking forward to tomorrow.

I am wearing... grey knit pants and  a green-and-white striped shirt.

I am remembering... the list of appointments and errands for the week.

I am going... to start cooking dinner soon (hopefully... depending on the men). Bacon and eggs, biscuits and gravy. YUM YUM.

I am currently reading... amazingly enough, nothing right now. But I have 3 or 4 books borrowed from friends that I intend to start this week.

I am hoping... to get our home office area organized soon. I need to sell some of my homeschool stuff now that I don't need it any longer. It will be hard to decide which books to keep and which I can bear to let go.

On my mind... What is it going to be like around here during the day when it is just the dogs and I?

Noticing that... my oldest child is truly growing up.

Pondering these words... "Only he who believes is obedient and only he who is obedient believes." 

From the kitchen... Not a bloomin' thing right now. Ask me again in an hour or so.

Around the house... I think I can say all of the rooms are "company-ready" (except maybe my oldest's). I'm dying to enlarge the entry from the garage and create a "drop zone" for the kids to put their things when they come in. And I'm wanting to pick a new color for the walls in just about every room but the dining room and our bedroom. The rooms are too beige. 

One of my favorite things... a breakfast date at Cracker Barrel with hubby after I dropped the kids at school this morning.

From my picture journal... a picture taken before the start of summer, when we were at the Sandestin Hilton with Brian for a nurse anesthetist conference. We were staying on the top floor, and even though the weather wasn't really all that great (mostly overcast or rainy), we had a great view. It was enough for me to just open the slider to the balcony to let in the sound of the surf and the breeze from the gulf as I read a book in the room.

Do drop by and visit Peggy's Daybook page, and leave a link for yours as well!

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Book Review: The Voice New Testament

The Voice New Testament is a new Bible published by Thomas Nelson. While some might call it a translation, I think it fits more in line with a paraphrase such as The Message. However, this does not take away its usefulness. As a companion to a good Bible translation, I think it can bring new insights to familiar passages (ones we think we already "know" all about). According to the Preface, this new Bible version was created to "rediscover the story of the Bible." My favorite thing about The Voice is the inclusion of outlined boxes that contain extra material that expounds on the theme of the current passage, much as a teacher or preacher might do if they were discussing the passage in a class or worship service. Far from being a "study" Bible, one could think of this as a Bible storybook for grownups. It will capture your imagination and bring color and life to the story of God and His son.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Blog Tour: Robert Bresloff - The Wee Musketeers

A few weeks ago, I was asked if I wanted to participate in a blog tour for The Wee Musketeers, written by Robert Bresloff. I won an Advanced Reader's Copy through LibraryThing a short while ago. I was more than happy to join in, and was excited to get the opportunity to ask the author about the book, which tells the story of 3 friends who get transported into the story of The Three Musketeers along with the grandfather of one of the boys. There is suspense and action as they find themselves changing the direction of the story and needing to get it back on track.  I think I enjoyed the book as much as any kid who would read it. My children are familiar with the story because of the Disney live-action version with Kiefer Sutherland, Charlie Sheen, Chris O'Donnell, and Oliver Platt. I think perhaps this version might make them think about reading the story to compare the storylines.  

So now that I've filled you in on the background, here are the questions I asked Mr. Bresloff to answer for me:

What was the inspiration for this series?  I’ve always loved The Three Musketeers. Whether it be the book, movies, comic books, it didn’t matter. I even dressed as D’Atragnan on Halloween when I was in grade school. I still have my first copy of the book that my older brother gave me back in the early sixties.  Because I loved the book, the characters and the romance so much (my brother even taught me how to fence at 11 years old) that I often wondered what it would be like to walk the streets of 17th century Paris with D’Artagnan, Athos, Aramis and Porthos.
What other books do you have planned? I have recently signed with Gauthier to produce, The Fifth Codex, an adventure that takes place in modern day Yucatan Peninsula.  It follows the adventures of a well known archeologist and his teenage assistant, as they travel through the land of the ancient Maya searching for the mysterious Fifth Codex.
Illustrator Dan Ziembo and I are teaming up once again on the follow up to The Wee Musketeers, titled Robin and the Little Hoods. This time, Bobby, Fritzy, Keith, and Grandpa Max are joined by a new character, a girl named Judy as they travel to the middle ages and Sherwood Forest.
Is there a reason the book is set in 1961, as opposed to the 21st century? Being a parent and grandparent, I realize the importance of children using their imaginations as well as playing outdoors. Unlike today, where children spend most of their time on computers and playing video games, my generation played outside and we played pretend a lot. We played soldiers, cowboys and Indians, yes and even musketeers. I wanted children to know the kind of things that my friends and I did in the, really, not so distant past.
Are any of the characters based on people you know? Fritzy and Keith were, at the time, my two very best friends. We got into an awful lot of trouble (nothing serious) and played a lot of games. Many were pretend games, and just as the boys do in the book we played outside— almost all day. Grandpa Max, well, he was my grandfather. Unfortunately, Grandpa Max passed away before I knew him. I guess this was my way of having the relationship with the grandfather I never had the pleasure to know. It was actually my brother Marty that read to me and got me interested in the classics.
What do you like to do when you aren't writing? I’m an exercise therapist as well as a personal fitness trainer, so that keeps me pretty busy, but when I’m not working, my favorite thing to do is spend time with my grandchildren.
What is the best book you’ve read this year so far? That’s really a tough question. I try and alternate reading adult books and kid’s books. I love to see what other authors are writing as well as the classic children’s books authors, such as L. Frank Baum, Lewis Carroll and more recently, J.K. Rowling. The most interesting read so far this year was Codex 632 by José Rodrigues dos Santos. It’s about Christopher Columbus’s true origins.
If you could recommend one book for everyone to read, what would it be? I can’t really recommend one book that everyone should read, but for the kids, I recommend the Wizard of Oz series. Baum is a wonderful storyteller that created a fairyland like no other in literature. Oh, and The Wee Musketeers

I think this book would appeal greatly to boys, although some girls who aren't locked into the idea of "girl books/boy books" would also enjoy the story. It makes a great read-aloud for ones not reading yet, and would work for indpendent readers up to around 11 or 12, I believe.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

What's goin' on

So I haven't really written much about what's been happening around the home lately; just haven't taken the time to sit and write much. But it seems I have a little time today between laundry loads to write, so thought I'd catch anyone up who's interested.

Last time I posted anything more than a meme post, I talked about looking forward to the ladies' retreat in Nashville. It was a great weekend (well, really less than a weekend) and I hated to see it end. We heard an awesome testimony and hiked MILES from our rooms to the convention center at the Opryland Hotel. Man, that place is HUGE! I think I'd rather go there when I didn't have anything to do and could just spend some time relaxing by the pool or something. The trip home was just as wonderful as the retreat. Lots of deep discussions and challenging conversation.

Then in the middle of March, we got to celebrate some birthdays. My brother-in-law's birthday was the 13th, Brian's was the 16th, and my "nearly-niece" Heidi's birthday was also the 16th. We used the occasion as an excuse to meet up for dinner at a new-to-us place called The Mellow Mushroom (sounds psychedelic, doesn't it?). They make AWESOME pizza.  It was deelish. Looking forward to a return visit!

The next week was a very special treat. Casting Crowns was in town for a concert on the 25th. I had scored 2 free tickets through a Facebook contest hosted by the local Christian radio station, WAY-FM about 2 weeks before this. Then the day before the concert, I won 2 more tickets from Mark Hall; these tickets included passes for a meet and greet before the concert. (Side note: I wonder if living in Alabama has made me more lucky... I've never been able to win anything so easily before!) I was able to give the first 2 tickets away to a friend and her daughter, and Brian and I used the last 2.  The concert was one of the best I've ever been to, probably because it was much less of a concert/performance than it was just a time of worship. Before Casting Crowns sang, we heard from Caleb (Steven Curtis Chapman's sons, Caleb and Will Franklin) and Kutless.

Sprinkle in some fun family dinners on the weekends (I've been lucky enough to be able to get my sister and her husband over for at least one meal a weekend, and sometimes one of the boys will come along too). The other fun part is that she brings their new Great Dane puppy over to play with our dogs. Sully (short for Sullivan) is  almost 14 weeks old now and is bigger than Campbell, but not big enough to take Rory down yet. Rory is great with him and they have a ball together. This past weekend, after they had been playing pretty intensely, we noticed things had gotten quiet and found them curled up together resting on one of the rugs. I wish we'd gotten a picture. I'll try to get one of them together soon. I have a feeling he is going to be a big boy. His paws are already larger than Rory's.

March was a month of movies as well. We saw Alice in Wonderland  (meh... I wasn't all that impressed) and Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. That last one was fun. We went with my sister and b-i-l to see it and everyone enjoyed it. Oh, and this past Sunday evening, we took in How to Train Your Dragon with sis/hubby, 2 of their boys, and the boys' girlfriends. I imagine we'll be getting that one on DVD eventually.

OK, this is getting long, so I'll make the rest of this quick. Halle and Joel are back at their respective music lessons again, and we're looking to get Noah started back with his guitar lessons. Emily had a visit from her best friend in CA for 4 days ; they spent 2 of them driving to MO to visit my mom and to eat dinner at Lambert's

And now for the really big news: We spent the better part of last evening scrambling around picking up the house and getting the last of the unpacking done that we'd been avoiding in order to get ready for a visit from ..... drumroll please..... our new cleaning lady. I can keep the laundry done, the groceries bought, the meals cooked, and the kitchen semi-clean, but this house is more than I can handle, so we found someone who is coming one day a week to clean. (Brian if you are reading... stop now.) I owe my husband more than I can say for this.

So there you have it. Indeed. (Inside joke...) I'll be back with more news sooner rather than later.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Glorious Day - Then Sings My Soul Saturday

In honor of Easter, here's Casting Crown's version of an old hymn... depending on your hymnbook, you may have known it as "One Day" or "O Glorious Day." Strange how a new melody can make you hear the words almost as if it's the first time...

Glorious Day
Casting Crowns

One day when Heaven was filled with His praises
One day when sin was as black as could be
Jesus came forth to be born of a virgin
Dwelt among men, my example is He
Word became flesh and the light shined among us
His glory revealed

Living, He loved me
Dying, He saved me
Buried, He carried my sins far away
Rising, He justified freely forever
One day He’s coming
Oh glorious day, oh glorious day

One day they led Him up Calvary’s mountain
One day they nailed Him to die on a tree
Suffering anguish, despised and rejected
Bearing our sins, my Redeemer is He
Hands that healed nations, stretched out on a tree
And took the nails for me

One day the grave could conceal Him no longer
One day the stone rolled away from the door
Then He arose, over death He had conquered
Now He’s ascended, my Lord evermore
Death could not hold Him, the grave could not keep Him
From rising again

One day the trumpet will sound for His coming
One day the skies with His glories will shine
Wonderful day, my Beloved One, bringing
My Savior, Jesus, is mine

Oh, glorious day

More songs of inspiration can be found at Amy's.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

"To Know You" - Then Sings My Soul Saturday

What's our purpose in life? What's God's goal for our lives? To make us like Jesus... to bring him glory. Paul said in Philippians 3 that

I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord...

Nearly every line of this song is rooted in Scripture, especially in the book of Philippians (mostly chapter 3). What does it mean to know Christ?

See more inspirational music at Amy's this weekend.

To Know You
Casting Crowns

To know You is to never worry for my life
To know You is to never give into compromise and
To know You is to want to tell the world about You
‘Cause I can’t live without You

To know You is to hear Your voice when You are calling
To know You is to catch my brother when he is falling
To know You is to feel the pain of the brokenhearted
‘Cause they can’t live without You

More than my next breath
More than life or death
All I’m reaching for, I live my life to know You more
I leave it all behind, You’re all that satisfies
To know You is to want to know You more
To know You is to want to know You more

To know You is to ache for more than ordinary
To know You is to look beyond the temporary
To know You is believing that You’ll be enough
‘Cause there’s no life without You

All this life could offer me
Could not compare to You, compare to You
And I count it all as loss
Compared to knowing You, knowing You

All this life could offer me
Could not compare to You, compare to You
And I count it all as loss
Compared to knowing You, knowing You

And I count it all as loss
Compared to knowing You, knowing You

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring Reading Thing 2010

It's been a long while since I've participated in Katrina's reading challenges, but now that I'm a bit more settled in the new house and have that all-important library card.... Well, it's time to jump back in!

I am trying to avoid my tendency to put reading ahead of the other responsibilities in my life, hence my list is shorter than in times past. This also has to do with the fact that many of the books are library requests and I am not sure how long it will take to get them. The library here has a shorter check-out period than I've been accustomed to (2 vs. 3 weeks), so I may have to do the unusual (for me, at any rate) and renew some of them. I'm not sure of the rules here, but in previous libraries, renewing wasn't an option if someone else was waiting, so hopefully that won't be a problem. The online system back in CA actually showed me what my position in the holds list was, so I knew how many people were ahead of and behind me in the list; I don't have that luxury here, so I'm flying blind.

With all that out of the way, here's the list:

Books on hand

The Annotated Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery. This has been on my shelf for a good while now. 

The Wee Musketeers, Robert Bresloff. This is an Advanced Reader's Copy I received through LibraryThing. It's a kids' book and won't take long once I take the time to sit down with it. Looks like fun, and is right up Joel's alley. 

Not a Tame Lion, Bruce Edwards. Another book I've had for quite some time. I actually began this one, but it got misplaced in one of our moves and I found it again shelving books after this one. 

Shades of Blue, Karen Kingsbury. Technically not on hand, but will be arriving in the next week or so.

Books I'm waiting on

Girl Meets God, Lauren Winner. This book received a lot of buzz several years ago, but this will be my first chance to read it.

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, Donald Miller. Having loved his previous books, I'm really looking forward to this one.

Take Three, Karen Kingsbury. Third in a series of four.

Before I Fall, Lauren Oliver. Light fiction... read an online review that sounded interesting.

Coral Moon, Brandilyn Collins. Another book I read a recent review of. I've read some of her work before. Light suspense, nothing heavy.

The Rise of the Black Wolf,  Derek Benz. This is second in a trilogy for young adults. Joel is currently reading the first (which I read a few years ago). I want to pre-read this one for him.

The Fall of the Templar, Derek Benz. Book three of the trilogy.

I'm also hoping to come across something good to read aloud with the kids. We have gotten out of the practice of reading aloud and I'd like to start again.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

From there to here

This is part 2 of this post...

The USAF whisked us away from Ohio one wintry February day and set us down in Omaha, NE. We had been in Omaha house-hunting one weekend a few months before (November 2002) and had visited a church that just "felt" right to us. We had emailed the church before coming and had received emails from a few people there, so we weren't entirely strangers that very first visit, nor the second time after we arrived in our new home. The amazing thing about this congregation was the speed at which we became a part of things. Never before in our lives had we been invited into ministry so quickly. Our very first Sunday there, we wound up staying after church for the better part of the day and helping coach puppet and drama skits for LTC. Emily was assimilated quite quickly into the group and was given roles in both drama and puppet skits, participated in the chorus, and even caught up with the group in Bible Bowl study. Our LTC involvement lasted the entire time we were there (just a little over 2 years... we managed to get in 3 conventions before having to move again).  

Our LTC group was more than just a group of parents mentoring their kids, though. We were a small group as well... we prayed and sang together, shared our hearts and hurts, and took care of each other. This was another first for us. We'd not experienced this before. These relationships filled a void in our lives and created relationships that we are still keeping alive today.

It wasn't just through LTC and small group that we felt connected. We were blessed to have reached this church just shortly before they hired a new preaching minister. So we got to be the "new folks" with him and his family. We fell in love with them all. We became regular out-to-lunch friends on Sunday afternoons, spent occasional Friday or Saturday evenings playing board games, and went to the occasional concert together.  Halle was the flower girl for their daughter's wedding the weekend before we moved away. If you're a regular reader, you know that they are still a part of our lives; Jim came to CA for Brian's retirement ceremony. 

I look back and I see how we were going through a progression of sorts... in Ohio, we learned what it felt like to be loved. In retrospect, I feel like I was soaking it all up, but not really passing it on. Then in Nebraska, the same kind of love was there, but in addition, we were equipped to display love to others. Plus, we had the benefit of getting to be involved in ministry in ways we'd never been able to before. It was amazing to me, who had always felt kind of on the fringe of things. Now that I had a taste of what it was truly like to belong, I could never be satisfied with just sitting back and letting others do everything. What I learned there gave me the passion to be involved.

If leaving Ohio was hard, leaving Nebraska was even harder. And I had even more states to scatter my tears through as we traveled from there to California less than 2 1/2 years after arriving there.

I can't help but look back on all this as we begin a new chapter of life here in Alabama. We're settling into a new church family. In the less than 2 months we've been there, I'm already finding a place to serve on the praise team. I'm looking forward to an overnight women's retreat this weekend in Nashville and hoping I get to know some folks better at that. Brian's involved in a men's class on Wednesday nights, the kids are enjoying their classes... We're excited to see what God's going to have us do here. 

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Then Sings My Soul Saturday: Fade With Our Voices

Here's another favorite by Jason Gray. Jason does a lot of work for World Vision, promoting them in his concerts and this song is one he wrote for them. How do you answer his question?

Fade With Our Voices
Jason Gray

After all the songs are sung
And our prayers for Kingdom come
Did we bring honor to the words we sing?

Does our worship have hands?
Does it have feet?
Does it stand up in the face of injustice?
Does our worship bow down?
Does it run deep?
Is it more than a song
That fades with our voices?
Does it fade with our voices?

Lord it's you we long to please
Make our lives a melody
That we proclaim when we live in Jesus name

Repeat chorus

So if we raise our hands high
Let us also reach them out
And if we lift our voices up
Let it be the sound of love

Let our worship have hands
Let it have feet
Let it stand tall
In the face of injustice
Let our worship bow down
Let it run deep
And be more than a song
That fades with our voices
...It's more than a song that fades with our voices
It won't fade with our voices(Let it be the sound of love...)

Monday, February 08, 2010

February flurries

Woke up to snow falling this morning... no accumulation to speak of other than on the outdoor furniture, but even that was less than an inch and wound up melting by midday. But it did look pretty as it was coming down.

We're getting more and more settled. The 3 younger kids got new bedroom furniture last week; that's been a real help for them in having storage for their things. They each got a platform bed flanked with storage towers with shelves and cubbyholes for their toys, books, games, etc. It's a great set from Pottery Barn Teen that should last them many years.

I'm nearly done with the library-slash-schoolroom. We have a desk (also PB teen) coming Thursday for that room. Its arrival is providing much-needed motivation to finish sorting and culling what I need and don't need. However, some of the boxes are Brian's things... I'll have to set those aside until he has time for them.

The next rooms to focus on will be the breakfast area, our room, and the formal living room. We'd like to get a counter height table that seats 6-8 people for the breakfast area. We're looking for new bedroom furniture (bed/nightstands) for us, plus chairs/ottomans and/or a chaise for our seating area in the bedroom. And then we need to figure out if we want to get new furniture for the formal living room or move in the leather furniture from the keeping room or not.... Then that would leave us deciding what to put in the keeping room (the denim sectional from the bonus room upstairs??). Seriously considering taking the furniture out of that room upstairs and putting in some LoveSacs or something similar. After all, that room is mostly the video-gaming/sleepover/movie-watching room and really doesn't need heavy, hard-to-move furniture. Decisions, decisions...

Looking more and more like we have found a church to worship at full-time. For me, that is usually the hardest part of a move, and definitely the most important. But this time it wasn't too difficult. All of the kids are making friends easily there, and Brian and I are connecting with folks, too. Yesterday morning, the most amazing thing happened: I was recognized by a woman who was a camper at our church youth camp in SE Missouri back in the summer of 1983. She was one of the 6th grade girls in the cabin I served as counselor for shortly after my freshman year of college ended! I still marvel at her recognizing me. Once she told me her name, I certainly could see who she was, but I'm not sure I would have realized it without her discovering it first. Just another one of those cool God-things, I think! I'm looking forward to reconnecting with her.

It's going to be a busy week. One of the nearby rescue missions is coming to pick up some of our old furniture we have stored in our single-car garage tomorrow. I have an appt. in the afternoon, then CR in the evening. We have church Wednesday night. Thursday is the furniture delivery, then an early dinner out with my sister and her husband before we take in a local concert (Jeremy Camp, Chasen, The Afters, and Jason Gray.... I'm going mostly for Jason Gray, but looking forward to all of them). I will be ready for a quiet night in on Friday!

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Then Sings My Soul Saturday: Temporary Home

Saw/heard this one for the first time Friday morning and was moved to tears. How much we need to remind ourselves that what we have now is temporary.

Temporary Home
Carrie Underwood

Little boy, 6 years old
A little too used to being alone
Another new mom and dad
Another school
Another house that'll never be home

And when people ask him how he likes this place
He looks up and says with a smile upon his face

This is my temporary home
It's not where I belong
Windows and rooms that I'm passing through
This is just a stop on the way to where I'm going
I'm not afraid because I know
This is my temporary home

Young mom on her own
She needs a little help got no where to go
She's looking for a job looking for a way out
Cause a halfway house will never be a home

At night she whispers to her baby girl
Someday we'll find our place in this world

This is our temporary home
It's not where we belong
Windows and rooms that we're passing through
This is just a stop on the way to where we're going
I'm not afraid because I know
This is our temporary home

Old man, hospital bed
The room is filled with people he loves
And he whispers don't cry for me
I'll see you all someday

He looks up and says
I can see God's face

This is my temporary home
It's not where I belong
Windows and rooms that I'm passing through
This is just a stop on the way to where I'm going
I'm not afraid because I know
This was my temporary home

This is our temporary home

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Then Sings My Soul Saturday: That's What I Love About Sunday

I think I liked this song from the very first time I heard it. It's not your typical "praise and worship" kind of song, but it does say a lot about what used to make Sundays such a special time for many of us. I think we've gotten out of the habit of celebrating Sunday the way we used to. For many, it becomes another day to run errands and get all the "stuff" done we didn't get done during the week. Maybe we need to take a few more naps or "not do much of anything" a little more often.

That's What I Love About Sunday
Craig Morgan

Raymond's in his Sunday best,
He's usually up to his chest in oil an' grease.
There's the Martin's walkin' in,
With that mean little freckle-faced kid,
Who broke a window last week.
Sweet Miss Betty likes to sing off key in the pew behind me.

That's what I love about Sunday:
Sing along as the choir sways;
Every verse of Amazin' Grace,
An' then we shake the Preacher's hand.
Go home, into your blue jeans;
Have some chicken an' some baked beans.
Pick a back yard football team,
Not do much of anything:
That's what I love about Sunday.

I stroll to the end of the drive,
Pick up the Sunday Times, grab my coffee cup.
It looks like Sally an' Ron, finally tied the knot,
Well, it's about time.
It's 35 cents off a ground round,
Baby. cut that coupon out!

That's what I love about Sunday:
Cat-napping on the porch swing;
You curled up next to me,
The smell of jasmine wakes us up.
Take a walk down a back road,
Tackle box and a cane pole;
Carve our names in that white oak,
An' steal a kiss as the sun fades,
That's what I love about Sunday,
Oh, yeah.

Ooh, new believers gettin' baptized,
Momma's hands raised up high,
Havin' a Hallelujah good time
A smile on everybody's face.
That's what I love about Sunday,
Oh, yeah.

That's what I love about Sunday,
Oh, yeah.

Join us at Amy's for more music.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Then Sings My Soul Saturday: Shine

I hope you enjoy this song taken from Philippians 2, one of my favorite chapters of the New Testament.

Matt Redman

Lord we have seen the rising sun, awakening the early dawn,
And we're rising up to give you praise.
Lord we have seen the stars and moon, see how they shine,
They shine for you,
And You're calling us to do the same.
So we rise up with a song, and we rise up with a cry
And we're giving you our lives.

We will shine like stars in the universe,
Holding out Your truth in the darkest place.
We'll be living for Your glory,
Jesus we'll be living for Your glory.
We will burn so bright with Your praise O God,
And declare Your light to this broken world.
We'll be living for Your glory,
Jesus we'll be living for Your glory.

Like the sun so radiantly
Sending light for all to see,
Let your holy church arise
Exploding into life,
Like a supernova's light,
Set your holy church on fire;
We will shine.

Join us at Amy's for more songs.

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