Monday, March 30, 2009

Fingerpaint Fun

I told a friend last week that there are just days when I get tired of Caleb. She asked if this was mostly on days when we did not have any plans. BINGO! A light went off in my head. Caleb's constant "What are we doing today?" needs to be met with a plan. Today's plan- finger paints. Using this recipe, we made a gooey concoction, which turned out to be a lot of fun. (FYI: I had to turn up the heat to medium high to get it to thicken.) Enjoy the pictures!

Getting started:


Oooohh...messy!


A little more green...


Red + Blue + Green + Yellow = A brown gooey mess


Messy Hands = Much Fun


Caleb's masterpiece... He added too much to it after I took this picture and it is now a gooey mess in the trash.


The best way to clean up our fingerpaint fun was to let him play in the water.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Das Not Funny Friday


Okay, our turn...


On Sunday, Caleb told us there was a little boy at church who would not share the blocks with him. I told him that happens sometimes. His response? "Next week I will take my big gun. He will share with me then." Great....


Caleb is not a big salad eater and we often try to pretend he is the big gorilla from the zoo (which eats lettuce for his meals) so that he will eat the salad. Last night, our little gorilla ate his salad and got to have some chocolate pudding for dessert. He then tells us "Did you know that gorillas eat chocolate pudding? They get to eat it before their dinner and sometimes they get cupcakes before the pudding." Can you tell his love language is food or what?


Each year David and I do a NCAA tournament bracket and this year Caleb joined in. My strategy is usually to pick the teams I have heard the most of during the year. David this year followed some computer's strategy, while Caleb picked the teams with the best sounding names. After last night, my bracket is completely busted, David's is not looking too good and Caleb...well, his is still going strong. Das so not funny.

On the Nathan front, he has decided that he only needs to nap for 45 minutes in the afternoon...can we say crankopotamus rex? (Him, not me...though it might be me too if this goes on for awhile.) Das really not funny either.


Thanks for sharing our laughs this week and for helping us laugh too!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Thankful

So many times in life I fail to realize just how thankful I should be for the many blessings I have been given. I want to take this moment to stop and and just say, "Thanks God!"

I had a fun birthday dinner with my men. Both boys behaved themselves and David did not tell the waitress, so I did NOT have to wear a sombrero (much to Caleb's disappointment.)

While so many families are facing layoffs, we are facing a promotion of sorts and a possibility of a raise.

I have two precious boys who are remarkably healthy. ..and pray intensely for those whose are not.

Nathan has slept through the night for three nights (and counting...)

Caleb's little brain has clicked with the need to go potty and is now telling me when he needs to go.

Nathan had a great morning nap (though he is now crying, crying, crying after a too short PM nap.)

I am adored and loved deeply by the creator of the moon, the stars and my own not so thankful heart.

And you, what are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

In Him

This is the devotional I gave this AM in Community Bible Study. Enjoy!

The idea of this devotion first came to me at a very awkward moment. I was sitting on the floor of my bathroom, simultaneously trying to nurse Nathan (who was 2 weeks old) and clean up Caleb’s potty accident, when I simply burst into sobs. As I looked at my two boys, one who was now screaming in tune with my tears while the other laughed, thinking what a great joke, the thought “Divided heart, divided heart, divided heart,” ran through my head.

Repeatedly in this year’s lessons, we have seen the consequences of a heart that is divided between God and the world- people fall into sin, kingdoms come crumbling down, and most recently it all seems to result in someone being marched hundreds of miles with a giant hook in their nose. Still, the divided heart that I began to experience sitting on that bathroom floor is slightly different than the ones we have read about in Kings. While the kings’ hearts were divided between serving God wholeheartedly or bowing down to idols, my heart is divided between two good things, my two precious boys.

I think we all face this type of division- two or more things that we must choose between that make us feel like our very essence is being ripped to shreds. Perhaps your division is like mine and is from the addition of new children to your home. Perhaps your heart is divided between helping your adult children and allowing them to learn from their mistakes. Perhaps it is in choosing between your spouse and your family of origin on certain issues. Perhaps your heart is divided over forgiving someone who has hurt you deeply or divided between having faith that God will heal a loved one or the doubt that He will not. Perhaps it is divided over whether He will even provide for this month’s bills. As we all know, the deep pain of a heart divided can come from many different sources.

Shortly after my bathroom meltdown, God was gracious to lead my heart to Colossians 1:17. The verse in context says:

[Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities;
all things were created by him and for him.
He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.
For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
Colossians 1:15-20

Did you catch it? Colossians 1:17 says “He is before all things and IN HIM ALL THINGS HOLD TOGETHER.” My heart leaps for joy as I read this verse. God knew that my heart was going to be torn between my two boys! He knew that our hearts were going to be shredded beyond recognition at times and so God let His be shredded too. As the Father gave the Son on the cross and we were reconciled to Him, He prepared a way for our hearts to be held together in all situations.

This verse clearly says IN HIM all things hold together. Only when we are wholeheartedly following God are we truly IN HIM. John 14:1 says “Do not let your heart be troubled. Trust in God. Trust also in me.” In this week’s sermon, I learned that this word “trouble” is far more than a simple worry, but it is to cause great distress, to cause inward commotion, to strike one’s spirit with fear and dread. How is this inward turmoil, this division of our very essence healed? Trust IN GOD. Trust also IN ME. IN HIM all things hold together. If I had not taken my bathroom meltdown experience to the Father and allowed Him to guide me in His Word, I would not have the peace of knowing that He holds my heart together. As we seek God through His word and through prayer, He collects the pieces of our hearts and binds them together IN HIM.

I recognize that I am only at the beginning of a long journey where my heart will be divided many times between my boys. I also know this world will continually work to divide all of our hearts, but I know we can always trust that IN HIM, all things- including our divided hearts- hold together.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Lost Generation

I thought this was a really interesting video and wanted to share it with you all.



What do you think? Are we a lost generation?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Coleslaw and Irises

Seven year ago this week, David asked me the greatest question of my life...so in honor of that proposal, I thought I would share with you the story of how he did it.

March 16, 2002 dawned like any other day in Alexandria, VA (right outside Washington, DC). David and I had been dating for six months (we had known each other for a couple of years before that though.) and had planned a picnic in the mountains to celebrate. Early that morning, the doorbell to my apartment rang. David was at the door with a huge vase of purple irises, my favorite flower! He quickly handed them to me saying, "I will see you in a couple of hours for the picnic" and left.

As I got ready, part of me wondered if something more than a picnic was up. When we had started dating, we both agreed that this was not a casual thing and that we both knew that it was heading toward a permanent commitment. So on the way to church the week before, I had tried to talk to David about the timing of this whole proposal thing.

My lease was coming up for renewal in August and I knew I needed at least 6 months to plan a wedding, so in my eyes, we were pushing the whole timing thing. David totally brushed me off that Sunday morning and so I assumed that nothing was going to happen on this day because he just was not where I was in the relationship. (I was VERY wrong! David had bought the ring and talked to my mom by the time of the church parking lot conversation.)

So, that morning I got ready for a nice spring picnic. It was fairly warm in the city and I thought we would have a great spring day. David picked me up and we drove about an hour out to the Skyline Drive of the Blue Ridge Parkway. We found a cute picnic table and David proceeded to unpack our yummy KFC lunch.

Sitting down, I started to realize just how windy and cold it could be on a March day in the mountains. David had brought another large vase of irises, which the wind toppled over, spilling water in my lap. Then, as he went to open the coleslaw, wind caught it and splattered it all in my hair- romantic I know. By the time lunch was done, I was shivering and ready to be back in the warm car.

David had other plans..."Let's play a game," he said. "Let's play it in the car," I said. Nope. We were to play the "ABC's" of David and Wendi at the picnic bench... A was for Animal Planet, etc. Well, when he got to W, he asked, "What do you think it is for?"

"Wendi, of course," I said. No, it was for "Will you marry me?" As he got down on one knee and pulled out a beautiful ring, I cried out "ARE YOU SERIOUS?" and proceeded to cry with joy although I was wet, coleslaw covered, and shivering.

A little less than six months later, we were married. While we have had days of joys and struggles, I am so blessed by the awesome man God picked for me to marry.

Love ya bunches, my love!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

A Not So Good Deal

I love consignment sales. The thrill of the hunt...the thrill of the good find...the thrill of a great deal...Whatever it is, I enjoy buying used stuff. This Saturday morning I was at a really good sale. I found a few good deals and then headed to the check-out. As I pulled out my money to pay, a lady standing behind me remarked, pointing at my stack, "Wow! Look at that great deal she got."

I looked up to see what she was pointing at, PRIDE welling up inside of me. Not just a little pride, but full forced "Look at me. Aren't I awesome. Uh-huh, I am the consignment queen!" PRIDE.

That is when things started to go wrong. I noticed something flicker out of my wallet, but finished paying and walked out. Outside, I reopened my wallet and realized that I had lost twenty dollars. I went back inside, but could not find the money anywhere. My great deal was no longer even a good deal.

Do you want to know the worst part? When I got home, I had to tell my husband about losing the money. At first, I just told him I lost the money. Then, God kept nudging me and I knew that was not enough. I had to go back to him and confess my PRIDE. THEN, God kept nudging me today that I had to share it with you all too.

Talk about a truly humbling experience.

PRIDE costs us. This time, I know the cost of my PRIDE was at least twenty dollars.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Octopus of Doom

There are just some toys of Caleb's I do not enjoy at all. There are the ones that are too loud, too many pieces and then there is the Playdoh Octopus (of doom).

Caleb received this as a gift for his third birthday from some great friends of ours. We are extremely grateful for the gift and do not hold its annoyance against them at all. They did not design it with hidden little crevices for Playdoh to get stuck and dry in so you can't use it the next time with out thorough cleaning with multiple toothpicks. Nor did they know that using it requires me to do gymnastics while pushing and grunting to "make long hair mama, make long hair mama."

While I am not generally a fan of Playdoh (It gets everywhere, including under my fingernails and a Playdoh snake is as creative as I usually get with it), the Octopus (of Doom) is high on my list of toys that I would like to hide on the top of the closet shelf.

Of course, this means that Caleb LOVES the Octopus (of Doom). He would make and cut long haired crabs and fish all day long if I let him. Even I think all the add-ons that came with the Octopus (of Doom) are pretty cool. (Who doesn't enjoy squishing something until it comes out looking like a fish?) So, we will continue to play with the Octopus (of Doom)...at least for now, that is.

Are there any toys (your kids' or your spouses' even) that you are tired of or have conveniently been "lost" in your household?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

My Own Barnabai

In the Bible, there is a story of this guy named Saul, who absolutely hated the people who followed Jesus after He was resurrected. The book of Acts says that Saul hunted Christians down, imprisoned many of them and was even complicit in their killing. Then an amazing thing happened to Saul one day, as he was on a trip looking to round up even more Christians. Saul saw a blinding light, met Jesus, and had his life radically turned around as he became Paul, the most prolific writer of the New Testament.

But you see, at first, no one believed Paul had changed. Acts tells us he tried to join the disciples in Jerusalem, but they were too scared to welcome him. A friend named Barnabas came up beside him during those early days, introduced him to others, possibly instructed him and most of all just walked through this new life with him.

While I never hunted or killed Christians like Saul, I too had a moment where I met Jesus and had my life radically changed by Him. This May, I will have tried to follow in His example for 10 years. (That story will be told another day.) Also like Paul, I had friends who walked with me during those early days. My own "Barnabases" (or would that plural be Barnabai?) led me, shaped me and showed me how to live a life passionate for God's glory.

I have been thinking of these awesome people a lot lately. I see the fruit in my life and in my children's lives and I think of how each of them sharpened me as iron sharpens iron. I loudly echo Paul when he says,

"We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ". 1 Thessalonians 1:2

Thank you for being my Barnabas,
Jeff
Catherine
Heath
Jess
Megan
Scott
Meredith
Brian
KC
Aimee
Jane
Julie
Alex
David
and so many more...

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Clubhouse Phase One

We had beautiful weather this weekend and David and Caleb spent most of the time outdoors working on Phase 1 of Caleb's Clubhouse. The slide and steps are now up, but there are a few more things to be done before we can have all our friends over to play. We promise that day will be soon! Here are some pictures to share in the fun until then...

A cold February day started the project

Caleb loves helping daddy build

The slide is up! (The tube is part of Phase 2)

Daddy hard at work, loving his tools

Caleb working on his own building projects

The first slide down is always the best!

Nathan is excited that he will get to play one day. This weekend, he mainly kicked his feet up and supervised.

Playtime!
One VERY happy little boy!!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Facebook

OK, so I am beyond in the technical world of cool things and just signed up for Facebook today. Those of you who already use it, how does it work? I would like to connect with people from High School, College, former church groups, etc. I would like to also connect it with the blog- making he blog where I post the majority of the time. Is that possible? Anyone out there who could educate me?

On other news- David and Caleb are building like crazy this morning. We might have phase one of the clubhouse done soon!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Pink Eye

Nathan woke up this morning with an eye that was a little goopy and watery. By the time we got home from Bible Study and lunch with a friend, it was quite goopy and watery. After a call into the nurse, we headed to the doctor. Lo and behold, my four month old has pink eye. How in the world he got it without any of us having it, I do not know. How in the world he got it when his little hands still do not know how to rub his eyes, I do not know.

What I do know is he does not like having eye drops in his eyes. (He blinked liked crazy after one drop was put in one eye and started screaming as soon as the drop hit the second eye.) I also know the the power of suggestion is extrememly strong...my eyes started itching on the way home from the doctor and David complained his eyes itched tonight too! If you have the chance to say a prayer that this does not spread beyond Nathan, we would greatly appreciated it!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Snow Many Differences

Like many of you, we awoke to a winter wonderland this morning. About 6 inches of snow covering everything....


Caleb had a blast playing in this much snow. He just had to wear his "snow shirt," which is a light-up Rudolph and Santa shirt given to us by a cousin. His favorite activity of the snowy day...shoveling with daddy's big snow shovel. That might come in handy in the future!


It was interesting how the snow brought out some funny differences between mommy and daddy...

Mommy: There is a hole in those pants. He can't wear those out in the snow!
Daddy: There is a hole in my jeans too.

Caleb: What if I went in the snow in my underwear?
Daddy: Do you want to?
Caleb: Yes!
Mommy: No, it is too cold.
Daddy: Let's go! (proceeding to take him out in his underwear to run around for about 30 seconds)

Mommy: Caleb, don't lay down in the snow. You will get all wet.
Daddy: Caleb, lay down like this and move your arms and legs about for a snow angel.

Aren't we glad that God gave children both mommies and daddies? Without daddies, we would have no fun. Without mommies, we would all be running around in the snow in our underwear.

Hope you enjoyed the snow as much as we did!
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