Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The best laid plans of mice and men....

A fellow blogger commented on how I must be dry because I am only posting videos... Truth is I kinda am.

Remember my list of to-do's from a week or so back? Well, not going so good. I ripped all the wallpaper out of the bathroom to discover that we needed to replace the window now. Ron and I decided that we really should replace the countertop now before the new paper goes up and long story short...we are replacing the entire vanity. Don't worry super deal of a dad came through and we got a $600 vanity for $0.00. He got a great deal (under $100) and wouldn't let us pay for it. Shucks...
We had a piece of countertop already, but we did have to buy two new sinks. This was supposed to be just replacing the wallpaper and now...ARGH! I know it will be nice when we are finished but we are heading into the busy season with Ron's job and I really have no idea when we will actually have the new wallpaper up.

Ron and Eli leave tomorrow for 2 days of fishing so I think I am going to try to paint Eli's bathroom since I am kind of waiting on Ron for the next step in my bathroom. I bought the paint months ago and just have not done it yet. I would also like to bake a batch of cookies from this new reciepe I found. Oh yeah, and make sure that my four other kids are being well cared for...I let you know if any of this actually gets done.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day 2008

It is Memorial Day. We usually mark this day by the official opening of my in-laws pool with a barbecue and lots of swimming. This year they are having a new liner installed and the pool is not ready, so no pool party yet.

We do not have any veterans on my side of the family. I think maybe a great uncle or two somewhere. But none that either my mom or I were close to or knew much about. None that I know of on my dad's side. I really don't know about any on Ron's side of the family either. I am sure somewhere there has to be someone. This makes me sad. Memorial Day has always been about a barbecue or a day off. Not to remember those that have served our country which it was designed to do. I think the closest it came to that was when Emma was a baby and my in-laws took us to the cemetery and showed us where Grandpa JO was buried and where their plots were. I couldn't find them again to save my life.

My point is even though our country has faults, it is still the greatest country. We may not be perfect by a long shot but God has been faithful. The commitment and sacrifices of our forefathers has benefited us generation after generation. In some ways I think we are a lot like the Israelites that have 'forgotten' what God has done for us. We have not all passed down the stories of God's faithfulness to the next generation. Last year I used The Light and the Glory by Peter Marshall as part of our history and it was wonderful to hear the amazing stories of God involved in the founding of America. I want my kids to know this stuff, I want to know this stuff! I want them to know that God is not just the God of the Old and New Testament, but God of here and now. That He still works in amazing ways if we rely and trust Him. I want Ella to know how much she is blessed living in the US as opposed to her homeland of China.

Our country is certainly at risk of losing God's favor, so it is up to us, the remnant to make sure that we pass down what we know. I am very grateful for the men and women who have risked so much so we can have so much now. I am grateful for my Albanian neighbors who remind me that life is not like this everywhere and how I should not, cannot take it for granted.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

This is a great video that spoke to my heart on several different levels. Not just education...

May you be blessed with the words and the heart of Josh Harris.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I am needing to see some tangible progress. Something with a beginning and an end. Something that I can say 'Now that is better'. So much of what I do is a process and never really a completed project. I need to see that, so today I started two new projects and continued working on a third with the help of my kiddos (I knew they would be good for something someday).

First project: Rip the carpet out of the basement. Emma and Eli worked at ripping glued down carpet most of the afternoon. They got a good chunk of it done and will continue working on it tomorrow.

Project TWO: Take all the wallpaper out of my bathroom. This has needed to be done for sometime and now is the time to move. I spent the afternoon on this project, will continue tomorrow scraping. I am also replacing the trim boards and painting the ceiling.

Project THREE: The garden. I finished planting the seeds and plants this morning and Evie and Eden helped by weeding this morning. Hopefully this will mean lots of veggies this summer!

Ron has been working on removing old windows in the basement one at a time. He has finished three and has two more to go. YeaHoo!

Having an old house, there is always something to do. Something to fix. Something to paint. This summer I have a list of things I am going to be working on. I would really like to get all these things done this summer, but we will just have to see.

*Painting and redecorating the downstairs bathroom.

*Painting and getting a room downstairs ready for Eden.

*Re-painting Evie's room and getting it ready for Ella to move in to share.

*Painting the downstairs.

*Finishing the floor downstairs.

Hopefully next fall we can work on finishing the upstairs living room....

Oh, my goodness....what was I thinking? What was supposed to be a simple re-wallpaper the bathroom is now a mini-remodel. This list was supposed to be projects I could complete myself without the help of my hubby.
New window, counter and sink...and painting the exsisting cabinet along with replacing hardware. This was not what I had planned, but it is necessary. I am sure when it is completed I will be glad....but right now....Oh my

If I was brave I would post before and after pictures. But right now it is just too scary! Keep your eye on the prize...eye on the prize...

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

This is amazingly awesome. It is a little long but worth it.

Monday, May 12, 2008

>Jamie tagged me to play a bloggy here goes.
1. What were you doing 10 years ago? 10 years ago I had 3 kiddos ages 4, 1 and 3 months. That seems like an eternity ago.
2. What are 5 things on your "To Do" list?
1. Mop the floors
2. Meet with Tricia
3. Go to the grocery store
4. Make dinner
5. Enjoy the quiet house!
3. What are 5 snacks you enjoy?1. White Chocolate
2. Dark Chocolate
3. Homemade popcorn with butter & salt (like Jamie and Carol)
4. Cookies (big, fresh and soft)
5. Cherry Lime slush or Coke slurpee
4. Name some things you would do if you were a millionaire.If I had a million dollars I would:
· Pay off any debt
· Finish remodeling our house by hiring a contractor
· Go on vacation to somewhere hot and sunny with the family
· Adopt again
· Go somewhere exotic with my husband
· Go on a mission trip to Africa or China taking all the kids
5.Name some places where you have lived.
Baker City Oregon, Kennewick, and Richland
6. Name some bad habits you have.Biting my nails, and the rest I don't want y'all to know ;o)
7. Name some jobs you have had.
Retail clothes and shoes, optical assistant, office assistant, preschool teacher.
8. Name those whom you are tagging.No one...I am a party pooper

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Jamie has had me thinking and smiling all morning about songs from highschool. This song totally reminded me of not only my senior year but probably what was on my mind all the time in highschool ;o)

So, what song comes to mind when you think of your highschool exeperience? Post it on your blog and leave a comment. I love looking at stuff like this! I so wanted to be Whitney Houston. The hair! The makeup! The voice!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Parenting was so much easier when a simple 'no' was enough. No explanations. No reasoning. Just 'no'. 'No' to whatever I didn't want.

"No, I don't like that shirt. No, I don't like those shorts. No, I don't like that band. No, I don't like that color." Of course I was careful how those 'no's' came out, but still the answer was 'no'.

I am finding that our 14 year old has a mind of her own. In that mind she has thoughts, opinions, and preferences. Hmmm...who knew?

We are not experiencing any rebellion or anything like that. She just has different likes and dislikes than mine and her daddy. Music, books, etc.

So God is teaching me to say 'yes'. Yes to her personality. Allowing her to become her own person. The individual that He created her to be. It is scary and at the same time a whole lota fun! She is such a great girl and it really brings a whole new dimension to our relationship. I know that she is just trying to figure out who she wants to be. Somethings are non-negotiable, but there is a whole lot that just doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.
PS-I wanted to post a picture of Emma with the nose ring sticker that she thought was so much fun. ;o)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Pain as a friend

Angelina Jolie has a tattoo that says in another language 'that which does not kill me, makes me stronger'. In the book You Matter More than You Think Dr. Parrott states:
'Ultimately, the pain we carry in our hearts is the grinding stone that
shapes us to love. It sharpens our capacity to be tender with another's wounds
and to empathize without judgement.'

She goes on to say:
'It takes the sharp edges of our personalities and slowly smooths them into
a person who can be tender with another's wounds.'
And then finally 'Because of pain, you make a difference. Pain will give you permission to
walk into places you've never dreamed you'd enter, and it can change your
relationships like no other else. Pain, your personal grinding stone, has a
purpose whenever it is used to make a difference.'

We try so hard to avoid pain in any form don't we? None of us would choose to endure pain, yet it is there for a reason. For our good. To make us stronger, better women. To help us better love others and eachother.

Pain comes in lots of forms though, doesn't it? Harsh words. Dreams delayed or maybe deferred. Cross country moves, growing teenagers, children's health issues, marital strife, aging parents or grandparents (or maybe just aging), personal health issues, financial complications. The pain you experience, even if it is the same problem, will not be the same pain for me. How we experience pain will effects us each individually. Hopefully however we process the pain it will cause us to become more like Christ. More loving, merciful, graceful, patient, kind, self-controlled, joyful, and faithful. So many turn, even if it is just for a time or season, to be bitter, sharp, cold, curt, or judgmental. I certainly have done this. But I want my first response to be better.

When I get squeezed from the pain of life I want what comes out to be good. I am afraid what in reality does come out a lot of the time is the realization of my own sin nature. The nasty selfish, self pitying part. It seems I am not so unlike my children. I need the pain of life to teach me lasting lessons. The rod of discipline before I turn from myself. The Bible says

'The Lord disciplines those He loves'

and much of the time that discipline takes the form of some kind of pain. But I need it. So I guess pain really can be a friend.