Friday, August 30, 2013

Crazy Transitions

I'm going thru such a crazy transition phase in my life that I hardly recognize myself. I'm used to following a certain path because I'm told to but I know less about finding my own way. The same way goes with cooking. I always follow recipes and NEVER veer off of it. I find comfort in a routine and freak out on the inside till I get back in the well worn groove. Hope I'm making sense. I used to be an adventurer and in some ways still am. Just not in every area. I DO believe in going to church and having guidance of the scriptures.

Some of the brightest days of my Christianity was during the seven years I attended a mom's group called Homemaker By Choice. I learned soooo much on how to be a Christian, wife, and mother. I felt they had given me a biblical guidance when I was so new to mommyhood. Now, the leader that started the group is on Family Life radio reaching to a lot more moms. ;) She never made a dime teaching us. I'm so grateful to her. We would meet every Thursday and have breakfast while our kids met in their own small groups. While the kids are being taught and moms are eating, we would listen to the lesson. After the lesson we would meet in small groups of our choosing. I looked forward so much to Thursdays! One year I got to teach a kids class and it was amazing. That's when I realized how much I wanted to teach little ones. More than numbers and letters but about God's Word!  ;) It was so rewarding. I'm amazed that God gave me so many of my own little ones to teach. Wowee!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

For All to See - Mommies Online

It's hard for me to write when I'm told by people around me what I can and cannot write about.  Instead of it diverting my attention away from the matter, my mind constantly wants to put it all in writing.  This has always relieved my mind of any burdens even though I am super careful what I write about.  Sorry about writing about the camping trip.  I only wrote what happened and never meant any harm.  I never want to hurt anyone.  I guess maybe sometimes it might be hard for me to see the difference between just writing what happens in my life verses slander.  I really, really honestly didn't mean to slander anyone and that is why I wrote about the camping trip but gave no names. 

Since I was a little girl I loved to write.  I used to keep a journal all growing up since 5th grade.  I never wrote it for anyone to see but I also didn't write it to hide anything.  It was like having a friend that didn't judge.  Somewhere I could tell my thoughts without getting in trouble for it.  In 2006 I discovered blogging. I saw it as my online journal for my own eyes but still knowing others could see.  So I don't write to please others or to put up fronts.  I write for me and it happens to be public.  It was never meant to be a means of ammunition for others.  But if it is used in that way, I can't control it. My blog.  My writing.  My pictures. 

Moving on.  I've always had a pretty harsh image of God.  I'm not sure why but in some ways I do know why.  My parents didn't ever give me that image.  I tend to think God is waiting up in heaven, watching my ever move, and waiting for a fall so I can be flick away for all eternity.  Oh, how I hate my view of God.  I think there are just so many churches out there that preach so drastically different that it can be confusing.  Some that are harsh judgment all the time.  You never measure up.  God is always mad.  Then there are the greasy grace.  The kind where sin is never, ever confronted and open sin in the church is accepted and tolerated.  One thing that bothers me is each section of churches that put down each other's teachings. A lot like mud slinging.  I've been guilty of thinking that my church is the only way and all others are false.  I know, I'm so embarrassed to admit that!  I really think if we somehow just compared the doctrine to Gods' word, being careful we don't do our own editing and removing of the bible, and be kind to each other we'd be a much bigger force.  Rather than mud slinging, joining together and really pray for our country.  Pray for our president, whether we like him or not.  Pray for our schools.  Our kids.  Our unsaved loved ones.  Imagine if the born again Christians banded together, put away our petty differences, and worked together to see change in this country.  For 7 years I attended a Christian homemakers group.  Someone had told me it was bad to attend because it wasn't in my own church.  However, those 7 years I blossomed!  I was taught how to be a godly mother, wife, homemaker, etc.  Those weekly meetings did so much for my family I will always be so grateful.  Yes, it was a different church than my own but I learned so much.
 


I say us mommies need not worry about being judged for showing life like it is in our own homes.  Using our blogs as a ministry to show others our triumphs but not be scared to share our weaknesses.  Besides, only showing a perfect side of us encourages others very little.  His strength is made perfect in our weakness.  Blog for you but keep in mind those you may be encouraging (or discouraging) in the process.  Don't let anyone bully you or tell you what you can or cannot write about.  Be YOU. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

More Than a Perfect House Mom

So I finally, finally, finally got my children's homeschool books in the mail.  I've been waiting for so long it seems.  I truly thought I'd be excited to have the whole summer off but I was so bored!  I discovered how much I like a solid but some room for a fun schedule.  We decided to get off the internet schooling bit and try some books.  It's nice for a change.  :)  I want to see how the kids do getting to pick where they work on their books.  Who knew I couldn't imagine sending away my kids to school every day?  I miss them when they are away at their enrichment classes twice a week.  My husband had to talk me into that one because two days was too many for me.  Ladies ask me at times why I would want my kids home all day with me.  My answer?   Because one day they'll move away and I'll wish them to be home.  I don't know what next year holds but for now, my babies are home.  ;)


Silly pic!
I still remember when Charles sat me down one day and told me that although he liked how clean the house was, he wondered how well I knew my kids.  At first I was offended but I listened.  He wanted me to worry less about a perfect house and more about our kids likes and dislikes. More than flavor of syrup.  Deeper stuff.  I promised him I would try.  I have to clarify I'm extremely far from being a perfectionist.  That doesn't mean I never tried to have a decent house.  I worked very hard at being a good housewife. I left out being a really good mom though.  A mom is more than someone who bathes, diapers, and feeds. She feeds the soul, learns the heart, and solves issues.  She prays to be a discerning mom who knows what's being said in between the lines.  I wasn't that mom but because Charles pointed it out, risked offending me, I figured out how to aim towards it.  My first kid is now a teen.  EEK!!!  I seriously need God's wisdom.  I may not have hit any rough patches but that doesn't mean I'm na├»ve enough to think none will come.  I DO remember my teen years and I'm praying God's grace runs deep, deep.  Heh heh.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Finding Friends Again

I like my blog.  :D

I truly do because I've made it my own and no matter how many phone calls I've gotten, being told how I should write it, and even anonymous hate mail.... I've made it my own. 

Do you know how cool it is to look back on the history of your own blog and recall all the memories you might of otherwise forgotten?  To read about cute things little ones said or see how much has changed.  It's just soooooo neat!  Would it be an accurate blog if I blogged according to people's suggestions or threats?  Nooooo, it would not.  My bloggy blog.  :D I started writing this in March of 2006.  Ivy was almost 1 year old.  My only regret is I didn't start it back in 2000 with my first born son.  Ohhhhh, you would've really seen some drama.  I was a funny first time mama.  It's almost embarrassing. I couldn't change a diaper right if my life depended on it. 



My house is pretty darn clean right now.  I look around and wonder why it still feels a little icky to me.  It dawned on me that it needs a good paint job in just about every room.  The paint has worn off some from all the scrubbing and just general wear.  I'm no longer able to clean off those prints and marks on the wall because it just needs new paint.  Ohhhh, how I loathe painting.  I always pick the wrong color.  I don't know if I've ever picked the right color.  The one color I got right was because my sister suggested it to me.  Hilarious.  I need to hire this talented lady to come and give suggestions for every room. 

I really feel like God has gifted me a new friend that I had seen but almost overlooked because of my busyness.  She was always sitting on the right side of the church, towards the front.  She seemed a bit shy.  I kept looking over at her and wondering why I hadn't went over to say hello.  When I did, I was pleasantly surprised!  She is a good cook and very good mom.  I can't believe I almost missed out on her awesomeness.  I need to get some lessons from her on her awesomeness.  She's not a perfectionist, she's real.  I like real.  When I find a real person that loves God first, family second, everything else last, that's my kind girl!  Lately, I've been bombarded, literally, by people I've been running into that just have brought back that joy in my heart.  People that make me realize that there is still soooooo much good in people and I had just been too busy to see it.  This world can be a very harsh place.  It's good to have good friends. Real friends.  Not the Stepford Wives type.  Heh heh. 

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Worst Camping Trip Ever

My heart is hurting so bad.  It's been 3 days since the incident and I still cry and cry about it.  Some say it's no big deal.  Just to get over it. Others haven't gotten mad at me for being upset.  It was more like the straw that broke the camel's back for me. 

Charles has been loving his job because they had complete family friendly hours, or so he thought.  It was more like a way to reel him in.  I don't want to complain because I'm so grateful he has a job.  I just want to complain at least for now.  I'm shocked by what his boss did.  My boys go to a yearly camping trip with other boys every year in August.  Wanting to keep it anonymous I'll say it was a father/son camping trip with a nearby homeschool group. No names. It's something they really, really look forward to.  In fact, my boys have been counting down ever since they got back from the last trip a year ago.  Well, Charles has been working a lot and actually worked THREE DAYS straight, almost day and night with no sleep, so he can go on this trip with his boys.  I even would go to his job and help keep him awake.  The night before the boys' camping trip I hadn't slept for 2 days.  In the middle of the night I left his job to finish buying stuff for their camping trip.  I had to go twice in the to get everything.  Finally, by 6:30am Charles was ready to go home.  He was happy he was finally getting a 4 day weekend that he had approved awhile back.  We get home and he falls asleep for one hour.  ONE HOUR later after our arrival his job texts him frantically.  Charles calls them back and they tell him to come back into work or he's fired.  He was at a loss because this was an approved vacation and he hasn't had any rest.  How would he tell his boys?  I got the idea to call some leaders and ask if it was still possible to send the boys since it was highly supervised camping trip.  They said it would be no problem whatsoever.  I was so relieved and I drove them over along with a friend that had come along. 

I arrived at the location and checked again with the leaders to see if it'd be okay.  They kept saying it'd be no problem whatsoever and to sign a waiver.  Well, I get a call a few hours later that they were being returned home because of an incident.  I was shocked and very ashamed.  It was a 3 hour drive back from the camping site.  They must've been really, really bad for them to drive so far to return my boys.  I waited past midnight for my boys to come home.  They came in the house very quiet and sad and went straight to bed along with the friend we brought.  Charles and I talked with the drivers, which are also the leaders of the trip, and they told me the kids had been really good.  That wasn't the problem at all.  Another kid threw a co2 in the fire and caused an explosion.  They freaked out and decided to send the kids home who's parent weren't there because they felt things were out of control.  Well, ours were the only ones that didn't have a parent there.  They had NOTHING to do with explosion whatsoever nor were the near the incident when it happened but were made to pack up and leave in front of everyone sitting around the fire.  They said it was very embarrassing.  People were watching my kids pack up and no doubt many thought my kids must've been horribly bad to have to leave.  They had to leave half their stuff there I had just bought because they were rushed into the van. 

The other part of the story.  An older kid convinced a 9 year old to throw a co2 into the fire.  He said, "throw it in.  It'll really light it up!"  The 9 year old didn't want to but the older kid started calling him a wimp and a baby.  After awhile of this, the 9 year old threw it in the fire having no clue what would happen.  An older guy saw it and yelled (thankfully) for everyone to back up.  An explosion happened.  Oh my word, it was bad.  The guys in charge were very upset. The 9 year old told them that a big kid told him to throw it in and he didn't know it'd explode.  Turns out, it was a son of the leader there.  He denied it to save his hide even though other kids said they heard him pressuring the young boy. He got to stay because he lied and mine, along with the 9 year old, went home. 

Normally, I would take this singular incident and just let it go.  However, other bullies were causing problems, like one of them shooting my young son with a BB gun on purpose.  Another known bully tried to steal my son's gun since he was forced to leave it behind.  He said, "well, he shouldn't have left it.  That's his problem."  He didn't abandon his stuff.  Thankfully, my kids' friend stood up to him and threatened to get my husband involved when they got back.  One boy picked up my 9 year old son and the air by his shirt and yelled, "Do you know who your talking to?!" My son only asked him to stop being mean just before he did that.  Mind you, these are mostly Christian kids in this homeschool group.  When parents of these kids were being told of these incidents, they were being brushed off.  So my good kids went home and the bullies stayed 3 days and had a blast. 



That's the end of the road for me.  I was bullied as a child and I absolutely will never willingly put my kids in a situation where this can happen.  It's been an ongoing problem and other kids have made complaints.  Unfortunately, when the bullies parents are the ones in charge of most of the events, they get away with it.  I love my kids and will not put them in a situation like this any more. It should be a place of refuge with kids that have things in common.  My kids are very hurt and have asked to not have to go to any more of these events.  I'm very sad for them and I know exactly how they feel.  I was very bullied from 4th-9th grade in school.  I'm not a bad person for trying to shield my kids.  I've given it several years so I'm not trying to be a flake.  It's just enough.  Many other kids have complained and haven't been heard.  I don't want to be one of those parents that don't listen.

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Sleeping At The Office-Exhausting days

It's been a tough week.  My husband has been working almost 24 hours a day.  No joke.  It's 1am, we are at the office and we're not leaving anytime soon.  As soon as I get home in the wee hours I have to pack up for the guys to go camping. Thankfully since Charles is having a father/son camping trip he gets time off.  He planned for it so it's gonna happen for sure. His office hired a new designer to help out but he isn't coming till September.  My poor husband has been taking naps in his office, only an hour at a time.  It's just crazy.  We come with him at night to keep company and the little kids find spots to rest in sleeping bags.  I'm usually up with him and get a little rest later but since I have to pack them up for camping, I won't get any sleep today. 

The girls first day of enrichment classes are today.  It's school for them and they are so excited!  Since they homeschool, I sign them up for some classes twice a week.  It's a school only open to homeschool kids and you pick the day you want them to go.  You wouldn't believe how amazing the kids are.  It's the most polite playground you will ever see compared to homeschool kids.  Non of that crazy, negative peer pressure stuff I was so used to.  I took the girls school shopping  yesterday and they were so excited!  This is Ashley's first year.  I got them backpacks, clothes, and shoes.  They even slipped in a couple of Hello Kitty hats.  The girls will giggling all day today trying on their new outfits.  It's so hard taking girls shopping because they want everything in sight.  It's so different when I take my boys. They're like, "this'll do."

I still haven't decided on which homeschool program I want to go with this year.  Very undecided.  If I ever go on Facebook and ask for some ideas I get overloaded by a 100 different opinions.  I'm sure they're all valid, I just think everyone has different tastes.  Makes it hard for me to decide.  Sigh.  Just goes to show you there is no perfect ONE homeschool.  So many people I know mix and match from different resources.  I need one that is a good fit for a large family.  I am excited because at their enrichment school, I picked some subjects I didn't want to worry about teaching at home.  I usually like them to learn science in a lab rather than at home.  I'm so incredibly blessed they have a school that offers these classes for homeschooled kids.  Wow!

Monday, August 05, 2013

Christianity- Back To The Basics

Back to the basics.  My thought for today.  I think as Christians, as humans, we tend to worry more about other people's business than ourselves.  Are other people acting Christian?  Are they following the bible exactly?  Are they praying and reading their bible?  Are they outreaching?  Are they picking friends wisely?  It may just be me but I think if every person focused more on themselves rather than what other people are doing, maybe there would be less fighting in the church, in the home or among friends.  It's DIFFERENT when you're talking about your spiritual leaders (in my opinion).  That's a whole different ball game.  People that are supposed to be leading you in Christ, interpreting scripture, or counseling your family should have an open book of standards being held.  That said, how much is it my business where people choose to worship? 

pretty simple, right?
Back to the basics.  Choosing a place of worship based on the bible should be a careful thought out process.  It should be done with bible in hand, comparing the pastor's words with the scriptures.  Do they line up?  Is this where I want my family to worship?  Secondly, the people.  Do I want these people influencing my children?  Are they encouraging me to want to serve or are they busy bodies?  Do they focus more on people's faults rather than encouraging them?  NONE of us are perfect.  We all fall short.  We make mistakes, say things we shouldn't say, hold anger at times towards each other, struggle with forgiving, have times of needless bickering. So why should we spend so much time making sure other people are living for God the way we think they should?  Not to be extreme but if I were a sinner looking from the outside, this would scare me away!  I wouldn't want to touch it with a 10 foot pole!  No church should be a gang that jumps people in or out.  "Hey, if you don't go to my church, we're through."  That is a scary place to be I would think.  Would God judge me in the same measure I judge them?  On the other hand, when someone does decide to leave, I would hope they wouldn't try to take people out with them as revenge.  If they do, that's a different story and God will judge them.  We should never be a stumbling block to others.
 


Back to the basics.  Love God, read my bible, pray, attend services to learn, share Jesus with other so they might know Him.  That's pretty basic, right?  Not too hard.  Now, it will become much harder if I try to force other people to do exactly the same. Let God be their judge.  Let God judge their heart. He knows better than we do.  It's not a sin to go on a week, or even two, long vacation.  Christianity isn't perfectly attending every service.  It's not how many doors you knock on.  Christianity isn't how perfectly you live your life.  We are saved by God's grace and his grace alone.  Not by our works.  We do these thing because we love Him.  Not because we want fire insurance so it keeps God from flinging us into hell.  Yes, we need church.  The bible says not to forsake it.  But it was never about being the perfect Christian that does everything to the rule book without mistake.

Maybe judge less.  Go back to the basics of what Christianity is all about. Love God with all your heart, mind, and soul.  Serve others. 

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Rescuing Sad Animals

Our long haired chihuahua
I've done a lot of animal rescues in the past and still do.  If I find out a dog, cat, rabbit, etc, isn't being cared for, hungry, sad, lonely... I try to take them in and care for them a bit before finding a forever home for them.  I've had friends and strangers get the impression that I get animals to keep them and then decide I don't want them anymore.  Just because I fall in love with an animal for a couple of weeks doesn't mean that I intend on having them for good.  I can't help but rescue animals.  Just like I rescued a dying horse once, it doesn't matter what animal it is. I have a dog right now I'm trying to find a home for and boy is he LOVING!!! I've been cuddling him tons and getting to know him before I find a forever home. I have to know the dog's personality before I find a home and I also am picky about who they go with. I'm writing this blog in hopes that the hate mail can stop.  No, I don't have a revolving door of animals because I'm cold hearted. Yes, I love animals and if I find out one is in trouble, needs a home, or is unwell I will take them in till they are better.

A Chihuahua we rescued
When I was little I would find injured animals and take them in till they were better.  One time I took in a bird with a broken leg, wrapped the leg, fed it.  About a week later it flew away completely healthy.  I was soooo happy.  Often, especially in the winter, I would find animals like this.  My poor mom had to endure me bringing them in the house.  Ha ha. 

There is a dog recently a friend gifted me that is a keeper.  He fits right in with my Great Dane and long haired Chihuahua.  He's staying.  However, he looked like a raggedy doll when I got him!  lol.  He is my dream dog, a Yorkshire Terrier.  Why is he my dream dog?  Yorkshire Terriers don't have fur like other dogs.  Theirs is more like human hair that you have to care for.  So funny!  I love it!  I have to brush his hair just like I do all my other kids.  When I got him he was matted everywhere and dirty.  Still gorgeous but raggedy.  I know the owners and they are really, really sweet.  They both work and just had no time to be with him so they wanted to give him to a good home where he'd get lots of attention. Well, there are eight people here all day, every day so Benji has plenty of time with us!  Well, Benji is a boy but he is enduring a lot of girlie things because of his awesome hair.  Yesterday I bathed him, conditioned him, and then blow dried his hair straight.  Oh my goodness.  It was like a dog makeover.  I loved every minute of it.  LOL. (How Yorkies should look).

Example of a dog with matted hair before:
After grooming my Yorkie:
 

 
Sooooo cute, right?  Sigh, I love animals. 


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