The Son is always shining, regardless of the weather

Funny Question

Posted under LOL, My Kids Make Me Smile, The Unexpected - Oct 7th, 09 - 1 Comment

Bradley  asked me a cute question about two weeks ago. He said, “What will happen if you see a UPS man?”

I said, “What?”

Then, he explained, “You know…they just like…’ding-dong’…and then you never see them. Do they really not want people to see them? Are they scary-looking, or ugly?…”

I had to laugh. This is typical 6-year-old kid trying to figure life out.

So, you can imagine how happy he was to see a UPS worker face-to-face (in the parking lot) on Monday night (his birthday, of all days). Well, I said Bradley was happy, so that tells you that the UPS guy looked pretty “normal”. I was thinking to myself, I’m so glad we didn’t run into him on Halloween—just in case he was wearing a scary mask or something! LOL!

A Different Kind of Fall

Posted under How God Provides, The Unexpected - Sep 22nd, 09 - 1 Comment

It is amazing how hot it has been this summer. We were in one of the worst droughts in the history of our city. We have had city-wide water rationing, which meant that we had to cut down our watering days to once a week (and only at certain times). These cut-backs have left many people without grass to even cut back!  Our backyard, and our two-year-old tree, still may not recover.

As we were driving out to BC’s mom’s house, we noticed the trees on the side of the road. The scenery was like a beautiful fall foliage picture. I asked BC if the leaves were changing colors. He told me he thought those trees were actually dying. Boy, I seriously hoped he was joking. I didn’t want to believe him. But it seems to appear that this fall, we will have a different kind of fall; Not only will the leaves be falling, but the trees will be falling too! How sad!

Let me just give you a picture of how bad things are in our neck of the woods…

IMG_1010 (Small)

Here is a picture of our yuccas in the backyard (kinda yuck..uh..I know!) These eight-year-old desert plants were dying for water (or rather, lack of water). It’s hard to believe.

We had a wonderful week of rain last week, and right now, I am hearing it rain outside! God knows just what to rain down, and what to take down. He also makes rain with just the perfect ingredients that vegetation need. He may not revive our yuccas, but there are sprigs of new grass in our front yard, which have definitely revived our spirits. It feels more like spring with that week of rain, and we are loving it!

Just like those yuccas and those trees, we are certainly not exempt to times of spiritual drought. I am reminded of the importance of “The Living Water” (Christ Jesus) in Jeremiah, and I am thankful for the Word who became flesh, and was poured out for me…a sinner. The One who cried out, “I thirst” as He was dying on that tree. Oh, that I would continually thirst for my Lord and Savior!

Jeremiah 17:5  Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
Jer. 17:6  For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.
Jer. 17:7  Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.
Jer. 17:8  For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.
Jer. 17:9  The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

Psalm 42:1  “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.”
Psa 42:2a  “My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God:”

It’s the Little Things!

Six weeks ago, I slipped on a cold puddle of water in the kitchen. I was unloading hot bowls from the “just-finished” dishwasher, and I was walking fast (due to the temperature of the bowls). Then, WHAM!— down I went with three stacked ceramic bowls (the bottom broke—the bowl, not..uh…mine)! It all happened so fast, but bits of ceramic were forced into my left knee—the body part that broke the fall.

When it happened, I deduced from the cold water clue that someone (one of seven people in the house) did this…in the kitchen…with…an ice cube. Their crime was that they failed to pick up an ice cube…after it fell from the freezer!

I want to share a familiar poem that I like; I don’t know who wrote it, but here it is:

“HOUSE RULES
If you drop it…pick it up.
If you sleep on it…make it up.
If you wear it…hang it up.
If you spill it…wipe it up.
If you turn it on…turn it off.
If you open it…close it.
If it rings…answer it.
If it whines…feed it.
If it cries…love it.”

The particular line that came to mind was: “If you drop it, pick it up.” However, in all fairness, I should have been moving a bit more slowly. Well, then I was moving more slowly. In fact, I moved so slow, that I just finally got around to getting to the doctor on Monday!

My knee looked infected, and was so tender to the touch (Ouch! Talk about sharp pain). I thought I had removed all the glass; but, deep down in my heart, I knew there was glass—deep down in my knee. The doctor told me he would be happy to open it up and remove the glass. (That should have been my first warning…he seemed a little too “knife-happy”).

Then, he told me to lay back and “relax”, as he asked his assistant to get him the “knife”. When she brought him one, he said, “No, I ‘m going to need a bigger knife than that.” Well, about this time, my imagination was going wild. Why didn’t he just call it a scalpel or something? All I could picture was a Bowie knife. I guess I was thinking I was going to have to literally bite the bullet for pain control. So, I told the doctor he might want to tie my hands up—knowing that I would be tempted to reach down and knock the knife out of his hands.

That’s when the doctor mentioned Lidocaine, and instantly I felt better. Yippee!..numbing stuff…of course, what was I thinking? I rallied myself. After 20 minutes of treasure hunting, it was over. He had to leave a drain inside the infected wound, and now I am on antibiotic, but I am so glad that I went in. I know that I should have gone in earlier, and then my bum knee might have not bummed me out so much.

So, my point is that the little things do matter: a little ice cube, a little time passing by, a little puddle, a little rush, a little gush (from the little cuts in my knee—from little pieces of ceramic bowl), and a “little” lecture from me on the importance of little things! I am also reminded of a fitting little verse from Song of Solomon 2:15 : “Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.”

One more little thing…on Tuesday, I was trying to elevate my knee in the recliner, while schooling the kids. My friend over at organizing mommy has a clever name for a mom who can’t be on full duty (whether sick, injured, etc.). She has given it the title: “armchair general” (I love that). So, as I was reading to two kids, I heard a crash in the kitchen: a broken glass. Evidently, it was too close to the edge—you know, accidents happen.

Normally, I would say, “If you drop it, pick it up,” but this one was out of my comfort level. I’m not okay with having my children clean up glass. So, I got up and went about the task of cleaning up glass with a gash in my knee, and thankfully, I did not accumulate any more!

A mom is always a mom…even when she tries to be an “armchair general”. I am thankful for my arms, and my legs. I love my job here at home, and I truly am thankful that there is certainly never a dull moment around here!

Give it your all!

Posted under Admit One, LOL, The Unexpected, We Like Food! - Sep 8th, 09 - 2 Comments

“Going all out” and “Giving it your all” are exhausting mottoes I like to live by…sometimes. I was reminded of this recently.

I really don’t know how Chick-fil-A stays in business. The Lord must be blessing them for all of the food that they seem to always be giving away. Yesterday, Chick-fil-A was dishing out free sandwiches…so naturally, we were there. This one wasn’t so difficult. We only had to wear t-shirts with a sports team logo in order to order a free chicken sandwich.

When we walked into Chick-fil-A, I noticed some black and white pictures by the door. They really were not “black and white” photos, but rather, the people in the pictures were wearing black and white—dressed up like cows. These pictures were from the Cow Appreciation Day that we went to awhile back. As we herded our team through the door, I made a mental note to check out those pictures later.

So, I placed our order. Then, I went over to the picture board. I thought I might find our gang. I saw one cute kid, and I let out a chuckle. Well, then the man standing nearby said to me (as he pointed to a certain picture), “Did you see that one…she really went all out!”

I looked at the picture, then I burst out laughing as I told the surprised man, “That crazy woman is uh…actually me!” (I had forgotten about it, but in the blur of that busy day, the manager had asked me if she could take a picture of my cow nails…she said she loved them:)) So, I still don’t know if that man was laughing at me or with me, but I’m okay with that.

I still laugh when I think of that picture because nail paintings are considered somewhat of a low priority to me. I do paint my nails, but it’s usually less than five times a year, and it’s usually for fun…with my girls. So, there I was, modeling my udderly bovine nails, and wishing I could “moo-ve” that picture like…off the wall. Then, I thought about that man who made it a point…to point me out for a laugh, and I refrained from taking it down. I guess…deep down, I believe people should laugh more, so I resigned to get over it, and to be happy to bring a smile to total strangers.

ChristyClash (Small)

Getting back to my point…I have been told that I really go “all out” for a lot of things. With birthdays, and everything I do, I like to do my best. Here is a picture of me on “Clash Day” back in high school. That same comment was made about me back then! I was in one of those silly moods that make you want to stand on your head. Next thing I knew, someone asked me if they could take my picture, and it ends up in the yearbook! Talk about another embarrassing and “off-the-wall” picture!

I guess, on a more serious note (see picture above), this phrase has made me wonder if I am going “all out” to bring glory to the Lord. Am I giving Him my best…my allall the time? If He truly is my “All in All“, He deserves my full devotion, my praise, my heart, my life, my time, my all. I am reminded of the words to a most beloved hymn…”When I Survey the Wondrous Cross”. I think I will share these beautiful words, as I think of my beautiful Savior…oh, what love! As we begin another school year, I am encouraged to seek Him daily. He is the source of my real joy.

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

Text: Isaac Watts, 1674-1748
Music: Lowell Mason, 1792-1872
Tune: HAMBURG, Meter: LM


1.	When I survey the wondrous cross
	on which the Prince of Glory died;
	my richest gain I count but loss,
	and pour contempt on all my pride. 

2.	Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,
	save in the death of Christ, my God;
	all the vain things that charm me most,
	I sacrifice them to his blood. 

3.	See, from his head, his hands, his feet,
	sorrow and love flow mingled down.
	Did e'er such love and sorrow meet,
	or thorns compose so rich a crown. 

4.	Were the whole realm of nature mine,
	that were an offering far too small;
	love so amazing, so divine,
	demands my soul, my life, my all.
Here is Fernando Ortega singing \"When I Survey the Wondrous Cross\":

Man, It’s Hot In Here!

Well, last night was a scorcher! I thought I had a fever—I was burning up! This morning, BC told me it sounded like our A/C unit was not working (it wasn’t making a sound on the outside at all). That was definitely not cool. So, the good news—I was not sick…(just sick of things breaking). The bad news was that we had no idea how high the bill, or temperature, would be. We prayed for a relatively “cheap fix”, and I called the A/C man. We knew we were on borrowed time with our eleven-year-old unit.

So, the A/C man checked it out and said it was just the capacitor (somehow his use of the word “just”—just eased my mind). My mind went “back to the future,” as in…”flux capacitor”. Wow! Not only can it provide the right conditions for the possibility of time travel, but conditioned air travel, too:-). Thankfully, the damage was little—to our unit and our bank account.

The LORD is so good, even when things break. As we try to “control” the temperature in our house, we are reminded that He is in control of everything…and that is certainly comforting!

The Government Can…

Posted under LOL - Aug 26th, 09 - No Comments

The following video is funny, yet true. When we saw Tim Hawkins in concert, he said that he wrote this song in anger…what do you think?

Tim Hawkins-The Government Can

When my kids saw”Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”(years ago) one of them said that the candy man reminded them of Paige’s oncologist. I remember we even sang “The Candy Man Can” to him. He just so happened to love passing out candy to all of my kids (and they loved receiving it)!  He was the ultimate “candy man”. Well, I know what song I’ll be humming all day!

Dear Cousins/Nice Nieces

Posted under LOL, Sew What?, The Unexpected - Aug 21st, 09 - 3 Comments

I have been watching my nieces this week. Their moms are teachers, and have started back to school. We have all had a great time. One of my highlights was making matching denim skirts for each girl (ten total) by recycling pairs of jeans. I am thankful that my children have sweet cousins to play with and enjoy.

Yesterday, we had a nice breakfast picnic (donuts) in the park. That was the only time when it would be relatively “cool”. We thought we were going to get attacked…as we crossed paths with the cross-country runners…who gazed at the glazed donuts. Oops! We didn’t think to hide these. How cruel of us!

We were hiking along, and then we saw someone else having a picnic—a coyote eating a dead deer! He ran away, and so did we (in different directions)! I grabbed a stick, and wondered what I was thinking when I suggested going for a hike…with nine kiddos.

Then, I remembered…as my boys cowboys were absolutely thrilled about seeing this coyote. My young scouts “Lewis and Clark” (Benjamin and Bradley) had spotted the coyote.

Lewis said, “Hey look mom, it’s a coyote!”

Clark said: “It is…isn’t that neat? I’ve always wanted to see one!” Part of me was hoping these boys were crying “coyote”, but no…

This week, the house has been filled mostly with girl stuff—paper dolls, painted nails, and such. So, for my boys, hiking and protecting us was great fun for them. When we saw the coyote, they headed in the direction of the coyote…not away! I’m so glad they listened as I told them we were not going to face (or chase) this fear, but move away…and quickly. I was thankful we stayed safe, and had an “adventure” (my kids call most outings an adventure).

Oh…my dear niece M made me laugh when she told her dad that we saw a dead body at the park. Well, it was a dead body, but it was a dead deer body…rather than a human body! Oh dear, it could always be worse…

Cowboys

IMG_3838 (Small)Okay, I grew up with a dad who watched the cowboys on television. He watched the Dallas Cowboys, and he also watched westerns with cowboys like Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, and…particularly John Wayne. However, my dad was the sweetest man in the world. Of course, he was a tough guy, but not a rough guy…very loving.

Recently, over the past summer, my sons were introduced to the genre of “classic western”. They really enjoyed them at Nonnie and Uh-Oh’s (my mom and dad’s) house. When they came home, they asked if they could watch a western. We previewed and watched some John Wayne, Gene Autry, and Roy Rogers westerns. Some were definitely better than others. All seemed to be noticeably similar in plot—but I reckon the girls and I endured!

However, the comical comment came this morning from eight-year-old Benjamin. He said, “Ya know, mom…the good thing about having a sore throat is well…don’t cha think I sound more like John Wayne…kinda scratchy and all?” I have to admit, I’m one to look on the bright side…but that just made me smile…and hug my precious little cowboy (who is currently fighting a cold/fever).

Yeah…I also nodded my head “yes” when he hinted to watch a western by saying, “W.W.?”. Then, I started singing this line from a song I remembered from way back:…”Mama’s Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys!”

Actually, I’m okay with this “cowboy phase” in my son’s life. My hope and prayer is that my son would see the beauty of the Son of Man…the Son of God…the Man of Sorrows…the Savior of the World…the Meek and Lowly…the Humble…the Just…the Friend of Sinners…the King of Kings..and Lord of Lords—Jesus Christ. He truly is the man that is worth living for, and dying for. After all, He died so that we might live forever. My Champion and Hero has won my heart. He will come again, and justice will prevail!

Here’s a cute song for your lil’ cowpokes:

Cowboy for Jesus Song

Thanks to Robyn for sharing her song with us!
To the tune of “I’m in the Lord’s Army”.

I’m a cowboy living in the open range,
Riding through the fertile plains,
Trapin’, Eatin’, wild game,
I’m a cowboy, and ________________is my name
and I live for the Lord.

I live for the Lord.
I live for the Lord.
I’m a cowboy living in the open range,
Riding through fertile plains,
Trappin’, Eatin’, wild game.
I’m a cowboy and ________________is my name
and I live for the Lord.

Written by: Robyn C. White

NOTE: In the blanks put the child’s name or names in. Also
if there are any girls in the group, please feel free to change
cowboys into cowgirls.

My Son Has Skills!

Posted under LOL, My Kids Make Me Smile, The Unexpected - Aug 14th, 09 - 2 Comments

The following is a conversation that my 6-year-old child (talented son) had with me (amazed mom) this morning:

Talented Son: “Mom, do you know what I am really good at?”

Amazed Mom: (turned to face son) “What?”

Talented Son: “Well, I am really good at picking things up with my feet,” (He gave an honest grin—minus a few teeth).

Amazed Mom: (smiles) “I also enjoy picking things up with my feet.”

Talented Son: “Yeah, but which way do you pick things up?”

Amazed Mom: “Like this”…using my toes, and then bringing it forward..as I bend slightly (my classic example/prop was a sock on the floor).

Talented Son: (His smile widened, as he spoke with enthusiasm) “I can do it backwards!”

And that…he can. I am extremely proud of his talented extremities! My kids bring a smile to my face, a song to my heart, and a skip in my step…everyday. They are each such a joy, and yes,  they do keep me on my toes!

“I Lost Over Half of My Blood Volume…Normally, That’s Fatal!”

Last night on an episode of “Shark Week” (NetFlix), I heard the following quote:

“I lost over half of my blood volume…normally, that’s fatal! I shouldn’t be alive!” The slightly insane man that said this, was attacked by a bull shark while trying to show the world that bull sharks “normally” won’t bite you. This statement has also been quoted by myself. Twelve years ago, I hemorrhaged after delivering my third child…Grace. The shark’s jaws did not fail to clamp down on this man’s leg–starting a pool of blood; however, my uterus did fail to “clamp down” to stop the internal pool of blood inside of my body.

Looking back…that delivery went so well. I was in a hospital, but they let me have my wishes to deliver my baby as naturally as possible. I had no meds. and no I.V. I even remember saying…right after she was born…that I felt like I could deliver another baby. The nurse told me she’d never heard that one before! I just honestly did not have unbearable pain issues at all. But then…severe pain came.

I told the nurses that I was having really bad contractions…worse than when I had been in labor. They told me that after pains usually get worse with each baby. They offered me meds, but I said I’d wait (nursing baby and all). Then…the worst headache came my way. At this point, I took the Tylenol. I could hardly think. When I was being wheeled down to maternity, a nurse asked me how big my baby was, and I mistakenly said, “22 pounds!” What I meant to say was 22 inches long (8 pounds 10 ounces). (I think I was just impressed with her length.)

I remember calling the nurse to get her assistance (not even two hours after the delivery)…so I could go to the bathroom. When I moved to get up…the whole room moved with me. I saw BC with our two young kids, my folks, and aunts. They were waiting by the door to come visit. Well, BC said my face was sooo white…like I was “giving up the ghost”-white. I told the nurse that the room was spinning, I could barely hear, and I thought I was going somewhere. I was going somewhere—into shock! The nurse screamed out for additional help, as she saw the amount of blood that flooded out of me. Meanwhile, my husband, family, and friends were also screaming out (quietly though, as they were escorted out) for additional help…by praying to God.

I remember the nurses drawing the curtain, and that I now had an even worse feeling in my stomach…a “something is terribly wrong-feeling”. They promptly had four nurses in there. Several were desperately trying to get an I.V. (with Pitocin ) in my arm (which was hard because my blood wanted to go to my vital organs), and one nurse was trying to take my vitals (blood pressure), and I was in awful pain. There were two nurses standingpressing on my uterus to get it to contract in order to stop the bleeding.

Then the doctor came in and manually removed the clots. I felt like I was getting beat up by every one of the gang. I was screaming out in pain, and verbally begging God for mercy that I might live. They were getting ready to do an emergency hysterectomy, when they thought they got the bleeding under control. Praise the LORD! Thank you Doctor V. and nurses!

I had lost over half of my blood volume, and I was so weak, but I was alive. I remember being so wimpy that I couldn’t even lift the heavy fork to feed myself, or move my hand to wipe away my tears. Thankfully, Grace was such an easy baby. Family members fed me, and prayed for me, and helped me get back on my feet…literally. Not to mention they helped care for my hubby and three kids while I recovered (…it took all my strength just to nurse Hannah). I was weak for weeks, and I am so thankful for each one of them!

I received several units of blood during a long blood transfusion on July 4th, 1997. All the while, I was reminded of the importance of blood. I reflected on the blood that was shed to make America free. But more importantly, I was especially thinking about the power of the blood of Jesus Christ…His blood gives each one the opportunity for true freedom and eternal life with Him forever. It’s been 12 years now, but those are days you never forget.

The doctor said my uterus just failed to contract like it should—kind of a “freak thing”. I guess my internal organs struggled with a touch of A.D.D. there. They got distracted, and forgot what they were supposed to be doing. Well, I forgave it, and went on to have three more blessings…and with the doctor’s blessings. She just asked that I get an I.V. and have Pitocin after the birth to help my forgetful uterus. Again, I share these stories because I am thankful, and I want my children to know that God is always in control…of all things…including life and death, and He is full of Grace.

We had decided to name our third, Hannah Grace, before she was born. “Hannah” after Hannah in the Bible, who prayed for a child. I was told weeks before I conceived Hannah Grace, that I was infertile. So, we prayed about that, and God heard our prayers! Her middle name was “Grace” because God had graciously given us another blessing. I’ll never forget when BC told me, “Well, Hannah means “Grace”, and so does Grace. It looks like we have been doubly blessed by God’s Grace. First, with the safe delivery of a new life…Hannah, and second..with the blessing of your life…preserved–double Grace!” BC and I cried the day we got home, as the enormity of what could have been, sank in. We knew God was strengthening our faith—drawing us closer to Him, and He was strengthening our marriage through some tough times.

In the hospital, I received a name card with Hannah’s name, “Graceful”, and it had this very special verse on it:

“The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knoweth them that trust in Him.” Nahum 1:7

Another verse that revealed such truth to me was:

“For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” Lev. 17:11