Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gathering 'Round Really Does Make A Difference...

Lately I've begun to realize something:  Living a chaotic life helps me appreciate the moments when we aren't running.  Our free nights are few and far between and lately, when we are graced with one, I have been enjoying turning off the television, computer and video games and sitting down to a candlelit dinner with our little family.

This was mostly prompted by my cousin giving me my grandma's old dining room table.  I just love sliding on the benches and gathering around the darkly stained and varnished piece of wood that stands on my wood floors and reminds me of my childhood.  I spent many Christmases piled around that trestle table squished between two of my nine cousins or two sisters feasting on a family smorgasbord.

And that same happiness and joy of being a child on Christmas day fills me up as I light the candle tapers and set the table.

We gather 'round and I grasp small hands next to me as we offer thanks to our Provider.

The warmth of the soup runs through me and this treasured moment with my little family pours warmth into me as well.

Children are chattering and slurping and every bit is music to my ears.

These sacred times together are much too few and far between but these same moments help get me through the chaos and the running.

And sometimes when I'm having a really bad day or just feeling overwhelmed, I remember times like these and I cling to them tight and it helps.  Almost like the focal point that I went to in my mind when I was in labor with my 2nd and 3rd children (unfortunately I didn't know about the technique for Jonah...that would have been nice).

And sometimes life gets that intense, just like I'm back in the delivery room panicked and in pain with all of the unknowns pressing in from all sides...

...When there aren't enough minutes in the day or I just don't have the motivation to get it done, even if there were.

...When fears creep that I have crushed their sweet spirits because of careless words tossed from my fast tongue into their tiny ears.

...When the guilt rises high all over and failure floods ferociously.

...When inadequacy chimes loud, clanging hard in my ears.

...Or when I am lonely because work called him out of town, again...And not only am missing his company, I am missing his help!

That is when I can close my eyes and remember our special moments around that warmly lit dining room table.


I can see twinkling eyes and curled up lips.

I can hear high-pitched voices sharing sports stats and Cinderella stories.

I can taste simmered soup and can feel my my sweetie's toes finding mine under the table.

And all of this remembering helps remind me to make sure that we never stop making time to shut off the noise so we can really hear one another.


Saturday, October 22, 2011

BEYOND: Five Minute Friday

Linking up with Lisa Jo from
On Fridays around these parts we stop, drop, and write.
We write bold and beautiful and free. Unscripted and unedited. We just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.
Won’t you join us?
    1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.
    2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
    3. Most importantly: leave a comment for the person who linked up before you – encouraging them in their writing!
OK, are you ready? Give me your best five minutes on:



"To infinity and BEYOND!"  my boys used to yell these words with their sweet little toddler voices dressed up in their buzz lightyear costumes.  And now I think of that same phrase every single time I tell each one of my three children that I love them..."How much?" they ask..."To infinity and beyond!"  I answer...

BEYOND....The BEYOND...the unknown...

I think of the Holy Trinity and how understanding of it is BEYOND my human capabilities, Father, Son and Holy Spirit...three separate persons yet one in the same...I also think of eternity or the idea that God was here forever before He breathed life into existence.  It is all just BEYOND my understanding...

What gives me hope is that my God, who was and always has been and always will the definition of wisdom in it's truest and purest form and with that being said He understands and knows EVERYTHING BEYOND a resonable doubt because He has spoken it into existense in the first place.

He knows intricately each detail His paintbrush strokes because He is the artist...and even though the masterpiece is BEYOND my understanding....because I haven't been allowed to take in the whole big picture...I know that He is the most brilliant painter that ever was or ever will be....BEYOND a reasonable doubt...

And one day when I have the chance to step back and steal a glimpse of the whole mural I will be blown away, 'To infinity and BEYOND!!!"


Monday, October 10, 2011

Anger Management

I woke up on the wrong side of the bed yesterday.  Joe even brought me coffee and breakfast upstairs and I still was crabby.  I was irritated that it was such a beautiful day and Jonah had an away hockey scrimmage late afternoon.  I wanted to go out to a nice apple orchard and enjoy a family day, not be stuck in a freezing ice rink.  Joe's the coach, the one who scheduled the stinking thing and I was irritated.  Not only that we had to freeze on a nice day but also because Jonah and him would miss part of church.  We decided to make a quick trip to a local one anyway and on the way I was still boiling, and bickering with Joe.

Anger was rising up from down deep and spilling out of my mouth.

All of a sudden it left, just as quick and swift as it came.

We ended up having a nice time at the orchard and enjoyed lunch at one of our favorite places nearby.

I decided to skip the hockey game and take Micah and Ayla to the park.

On the way home we stopped for ice-cream.

We sat out on a picnic table and as I was inhaling my pumpkin pie blizzard a cute young couple walk right by us and stand in line.  They seemed happy and smiley and as they gazed our way, Ayla decides to ask me a question directly in their earshot,

"Mama, why were you so angry today?"

"Angry, when was I angry?"

Warm flames of red flash fast on my cheeks as the couple look at one another lips curling into grins.

"You know when you were angry at daddy in the car this morning?"

They turn around, probably embarrassed for me as I fumble for an answer and I secretly wish that I could shrink down and jump into my whipped ice-cream and hide.

And as I mumble something back to appease her and cover up my embarrassment, I realize God is showing me something loud and clear.

Not only that my kids hear and pick up on everything but that He knows exactly how to teach me a lesson.

And not only do I learn something new I am also just in awe of Him.  How He cares enough for me to reveal things like this in my life.

Sometimes life lessons are hard...they can embarrass...they can hurt.

But how thankful I am to have a God who loves me so much that He cares about what kind of person I am, what kind of wife I am, what kind of mother I am.

He cares enough to get through to me exactly as my unique personality requires.

He knows how to teach like no other, how to make it absorb.

Proverbs 29:11
NIVA fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.
NLTFools vent their anger, but the wise quietly hold it back.
ESVA fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.

Keep me quiet Lord and help me not to vent my anger.  Help me to remember that my mouth speaks loudly what is deep in my heart.  Give me a pure heart today.