The Son is always shining, regardless of the weather

The things we do for free food!

On Friday, July 11, my sister called and mentioned that Chic-fil-A had a meal-deal going on all day and at all locations. If you dressed up like a cow, you would receive a free combo meal! Well, we don’t really eat out very often, and I was thinking that it sounded like a lot more fun to dress up like a cow than cook a meal. So, I told the kids to find white tops and black bottoms. We cut out black spots from construction paper and I sprayed some temporary adhesive on the back to keep them in place on the front and back of their shirts. The kids found some black face paint, and started putting spots on their faces, arms, and legs. I could tell they were having fun. I decided to dress up as well (you know, I blogged about my weight the other day. Why not dress the part?). BC went with us, but it was not his idea of fun (or he wasn’t in the “moooood“) to dress up like a cow.

So, we arrived and had our “cattle crossing” in the parking lot. As we slowly “mooooved” inside, we looked around and did not see a whole room full of cows eating chicken! We really didn’t see anyone dressed up, and naturally, the sane humans were staring at such a large herd of cows. Oops! I hoped we had the right day! One of my girls said, “Can I eat in the car?” Then we saw a few others dressed up, and we felt a little better. The manager took our picture, and entered us in the “largest herd” contest. The food was great, and we had a good time. We generally try to be frugal, but I had never been quite to this degree! Saving $35.00 really felt good. Well, I think everyone survived (some liked it more than others) and I thanked them for the fun memory! The LORD always provides, doesn’t He?

P.S. I just got a call from the manager at Chic-fil-A, and we won the largest herd prize…two large nugget trays (valued at $126…that’s a lot of moola). She said Chic-fil-A does this every year on July 11th. So, don’t be chicken…mark your calendar, and maybe we will all be seeing spots and eating for free next year too! Wow! This Monday is not looking so bad after all. Praise the LORD for His goodness.

James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

What’s wrong with this picture?

Posted under LOL, The Unexpected, Those Are The Breaks! - Jul 10th, 08 - No Comments

I decided I should probably weigh in after a wonderful vacation with lots of food, and very little exercise. Where is that old scale, anyway? There it is…in the laundry room, under the mound of laundry from our trip. Well, here it comes…the moment of truth. What!…I weigh less than I have in many years? Oh, wait a minute, our 17-year-old scale is cracked, and it only goes up to 127 now. Yeah! I am forever 127 pounds! Every woman over the age of 35 ought to have a scale like this in her home! Boy, I think I even feel lighter!

Well, I like flattery, but I really love and need the truth…even if it hurts. So, I took out the broken piece and got back on the scale. Yep…it still works, and I still have extra weight that I’d love to get rid of. As I stepped off with a heavy heart (among other things), I read the verse on the scale: “…the LORD weighs the heart”. This is what I need to be concerned about most of all! This scale situation reminded me of a fitting verse in Proverbs 27:6 “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.” No, I have never thought of the scale as my friend…more like the enemy. But if I answer correctly, and I want a correct measurement, the scale really can be like a friend and vice versa.

When are wounds from a friend considered good? This is a heavy thought. We talked about this question at lunch today, and the kids gave some great examples. One son said it was like Laura pushing the deaf boy away from the train that was coming. He was unconscious for awhile, but he was alive! If you have any examples of this, feel free to comment. I guess I need to lighten up! LOL

How to play the mind game: Black Magic

Posted under Games We Love To Play, Love To Learn - Jul 10th, 08 - No Comments

Black Magic:

Explain to the kids that your partner will be able to figure out the object that we choose in the room, and challenge them to figure out how this is done (I don’t usually play like it is magic. I tell everyone there is a trick to it).
Ask the partner to leave the room, and together with the kids pick some random object in the room. It could be a Coke can, a hat, a person…anything. Did I mention it could be a Coke can (inside joke)? Then send one of the kids out to get your partner.

At this point the partner should have no idea what the object is.
Now you will start the show. Begin pointing to objects in the room, asking if it is the “chosen object”.
For example: “Is it the chair?”
“No”

“Is it the fan?”

“No”

The trick is at some point you will ask them if it is something that is colored black. Like a black remote or a black shirt… they will say no, but immediately following that black item will be the chosen item, signaling your partner to say yes. And the guessing begins, as well as the fun. Sometimes, I give clues. I tell them the name of the game is a clue, and usually point out the colors of different items as we go along, because this really is a challenging game! You could call it Blue Clue and use a blue item if you are opposed to calling it black magic—just a thought.

Kids Again

Posted under Poetry, Things I Love About My Husband - Jul 2nd, 08 - No Comments

Kids again…playing in the sand…
throwing the Frisbee…
walking hand in hand.
Kids again…laying out in the sun…
not doing a thing…laughing is so fun!
Kids again…..like Piglet and Pooh…
Always together… I really love you!

(I cannot believe it’s been twenty years since our love began and we were two kids!)

Watch your door!

Yesterday was a nice day. I love bc, and we have enjoyed our time together (see Second Honeymoon). He was so sweet in his blog. He didn’t mention the fact that my door swung open and hit another car. I had opened my door , then BC opened his, and this wind rushed right through the car and flew the door open. It was one of those things that just happens, but it had never happened to me. I always tell the kids to watch their doors, and sometimes, we all exit out one side of the suburban just to avoid the other car. Well, I left my name and number on the windshield, and I was pretty upset with myself. Bc’s response was, “Don’t worry, that is why we have insurance!” What a patient husband the LORD has blessed me with. He quickly forgives when I make mistakes..even costly ones. This reminds me of the time I broke the toilet (see my Thundering Waters blog), and he gave me no grief about it. Thanks!

The Frozen T-Shirt Race

Posted under Games We Love To Play, The Unexpected - Jun 25th, 08 - No Comments

Today we had some dear friends come over. Our children didn’t know they were coming, and were nicely surprised. They played outside. They played “Capture the Flag” and made some delicious mud pies. Then they got to cool off with an idea I found in Family Fun magazine. You take T-shirts and soak them in water, then you wring them out, fold them, and place them on a cookie sheet with wax paper in between them. Then you put them in the freezer for a day. I had done this earlier and when everyone was nice and hot, the game started. Everyone had to try to open their T-shirt, and try to be the first one to put it on over their other shirt. It was fun watching the children struggle to get it open! It was fun being together with friends.

I love mind games!

We have had a fun weekend playing mind games with our family and bc’s family. No, we don’t mean that in a negative way, as in psychological manipulations . We actually played games that really make you use your mind..and along the way, you begin to question if you really have a mind!
We played a game called black magic. It has absolutely nothing to do with black magic. So, aside from the title…it is great fun to play. I think I will start a game section if you would like to play some of these mind games on others; I will try to explain the rules as best as I can remember. We played “The Square Game” and “Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Whoopee, Johnny, and “Winks”. These are some old games that I played years ago with my family, and they sure are a lot of fun. Of course, it’s always more fun after you figure it out. Today, my sister helped me remember two more mind games: “The Name Game” (no, this isn’t that song) and “In Kahootz” (with a little help from Google). I might not give the directions for those until we have another opportunity for mind games. Our neighbor enjoyed them too, and I’m sure everyone is game?

No brothers or sisters, but cousins to make up for it!

Today we had a fun day with my husband’s cousins and relatives. We are so blessed to have such sweet and fun family members. We laughed a lot, and especially had fun playing with the little ones. If you’ve never bounced in one of those moon bouncers, you definitely should! Two older family members went in there for the first time! No injuries to report. Bc’s uncle sure knows how to bar-b-cue! It did start to rain, but it turned out to be a sunny day!

Here comes the Sun…

Earlier today, we found out our suburban was going to cost around $800 to be fixed. It was a nasty, burned out fuel pump. (We found out that all newer cars have a fuel pump that is submerged in the gas tank, and that at least a fourth of a tank of gas should be maintained at all times. The gasoline acts as a coolant for the pump.) That’s a real bummer. It cost around $200 just to have it towed. Let me tell you how the LORD continues to take care of us.
Yesterday we received a check in the mail from a doctor’s office. It seemed like we had overpaid…3 months ago…in the amount of $147.69. That certainly was unexpected!
Also, our ins. reimbursed us for $40 toward the towing cost today. That about takes care of the towing fee! We were feeling pretty encouraged.
However, my husband and I were frustrated upon hearing the high price for the repair. We were praying it would be something simple…and cheap! Oh well. So, we prayed together. Then we did the next best thing when you’re feeling blue…get out in the backyard with your kids, enjoy the sun, and have a water fight! We had a nice time. Buckets of water were flying. Water balloons were crashing.
No one got hurt. Good clean, cheap fun! I love summer! I love my family!
Then, later in the afternoon, a very kind family member offered to help with the cost of repairing the suburban, and she said she hoped that it would make up for not being able to come this past weekend. WOW! So, why do I even worry again? He really does provide for us in so many ways!
I had another sunny spot today. My doctor had asked me to get some blood work done last Thursday (particularly glucose and cholesterol). I got the results back today, and they say I am normal (relatively speaking). I am thrilled, and very thankful. Today, I really have felt the warmth of the Sun (Son) on my skin and in my heart as well.

ChAnGe OF PLANS

Have you ever had one of those days where you think you have it all planned out, and then your plans change? Today, was one of those days. We all woke up bright and early (5:00a.m.). I woke up to the sound of my husband singing, “Who can take the sunshine…sprinkle it with dew…”(This is the first line of the “candy man song”)…as he lovingly turned on the lights! Ouch! Artificial sunlight!

We finished packing and started loading the suburban when Faith told me she had diarrhea. Uh-Oh! That’s not going to be fun for her on an 8-hour trip! I slowly sat down in a chair and started praying…asking God for wisdom. I am interrupted by my Benjamin, who says, “Mom, do I have pink eye? My eyes feel like they are stuck together. Do they look red to you?” As I looked into his eyes, my visions of a happy reunion with my grandmother, who is turning 80, were starting to fade away. Well, there was my answer…I don’t think it would be wise to go with something as contagious as pink eye.

My husband took my son to the doctor at 10:45a.m. It was pink eye, and the doctor gave him some sample drops, at no cost, that will probably take care of it, but he also gave us a script if we run out. Nice doctor. We had been in to the doctor four times in the past week with our daughter, Faith. She had a virus and ear infections and tonsillitis, but we had our doubts. She had been sick for two weeks; her right tonsil was extremely swollen, and she was losing weight. Some viruses have similar symptoms to cancer. She has a sister, Paige, who is a cancer survivor, and this possibility wasn’t far from our thoughts. The doctor had some blood tests performed on her yesterday, so we were waiting, somewhat anxiously, for the results.

Then, I get a series of phone calls from my beloved family members. They were basically begging us to come. They said if she felt up to it, then just come on. They weren’t concerned too much about getting sick. In fact, someone said, “We always get sick when we all get together.” They were all so sweet, and we had been so looking forward to this trip. This is when I experienced some tension in being a mother and a daughter and a granddaughter. Well, so I looked over at my daughter and asked her how she was feeling. She quickly responds with, “I feel much better. I ate a little bit for breakfast and I haven’t had to go to the bathroom yet.” Hmmmmm. Let me think and pray some more.

Bc (my hubby) gets home from Dr. visit. We sit down to pray. We feel like giving the road trip a try. We tell the kids we will try to see how sister does in the car. We get about an hour out of town, and she says she needs to go to the bathroom. We look for a place to stop, and then we REALLY stopped. Our faithful suburban just stopped running for no good reason! Thankfully we had cell phone service, and my wonderful mother-in-law happened to be off work and somewhat nearby.

Then I get a call from my mom. My cell phone had played my husband singing “the candy man can”, so we were all smiling at his fun style of singing. My sweet mom says she is so excited that we are on the road and coming to see them and I pause for a moment to think how I will answer my mom. She says,” Sweetie, are you there?” I tell her, “I’m here”, and try to make it through without tears.

We tow the suburban back to our neck of the woods, and we only had to wait about 45 minutes in the car. We sang a little, and most of the children understood at this point that the trip was not going to work out. For some unknown reason, the Lord was stopping this trip. Should we resign to His sovereignty, or simply persevere? We all agreed to try to accept it. While we were waiting at the automotive repair shop, I got a call from the nurse with the results for the blood tests on Faith…everything is normal! I thank the Lord for not having us go through that valley today. You know, it really can be worse..always. We found out they won’t be able to even look at our vehicle until Monday, but we do have a reason to celebrate. The Lord was kind to let us break down as close to home as we did. I pray for those people in broken-down cars that I pass by daily and never even pray for. Our lives can be broken-down. We can’t trust in our health, or our cars, or our money, but there is One we can always trust, who has proven Himself to be faithful time after time.