Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Quiet House

Mike and I are at a conference in Post Falls, Idaho. In order to come sans children, I had to parcel my kids out to three unsuspecting crazy loving people. The younger two with one, the middle two with another, and the oldest two with yet another.

We had to leave early Monday morning, so we threw the children out of the house delivered the children on Sunday evening. That meant we had the house to ourselves. (I'll let you think whatever now)

I kept thinking that someday I would get teary eyed over how quiet the house was.

But for now, I didn't have to be quiet because children were sleeping. I could yell for Mike from one of the house when he was at the other end of the house.

I walked on a floor that had been mopped six hours earlier and no one had spilled anything on it yet.

I got up in the morning and didn't have to tip-toe around.

I was ready in record time because I didn't have to solve a crisis or do anyone's hair, get anyone dressed, or feed anyone but myself.

My kitchen was clean when I left and I only had to load one cereal bowl in the dishwasher.

We didn't even have the dog at home, so no one to care for but ourselves.

Yeah, someday it will bring tears to my eyes, but for now...hurray!

And to those watching my children...thank you...and we really won't be back until next week!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Sweet Bedtime Girl

Every night I sing Morgan a song before the last kiss and goodnight. I used to sing "Jesus Loves Me" until she put her hand over my mouth and said, "No, I don't want that song."

I'm going with she wanted diversity rather than just not liking that song or my voice.

So Monday night as I was saying goodnight I asked what song she wanted mommy to sing.

You Are My Sunshine.

We sang together and it was a sweet mommy-daughter moment until the last line: "Please don't take my sunshine away."

At that moment, my sweet daughter reached up and made a motion like she was capturing something and said...

"I took your sunshine away...haha..nanny-nanny-boo-boo"

Oh, her teen years should be lots of fun!

Shopaholic Test

Maybe you heard this on the news.

At first I thought it was just silly and I would ignore it.

The new test includes six statements, for which individuals answer on a
7-point scale from strongly disagree to strongly agree:
  1. My closet has unopened shopping bags in it.
  2. Others might consider me a "shopaholic."
  3. Much of my life centers around buying things.
  4. I buy things I don't need.
  5. I buy things I did not plan to buy.
  6. I consider myself an impulse purchaser.

Now I just want to know where I can buy this test.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Beth Moore Recap

I know - finally! All four of you were on the edge of your seats!

Text for the weekend: Isaiah 32:1-6,8

See, a king will reign in righteousness and rulers will rule with justice.

Each man will be like a shelter form the wind and a refuge from the storm, like streams of water in the desert and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land.

Then the eyes of those who see will no longer be closed, and the ears of those who hear will listen.

The mind of the rash will know and understand, and the stammering tongue will be fluent and clear.

No longer will the fool be called noble nor the scoundrel be highly respected.

But the noble man makes noble plans, and by noble deeds he stands.

The last verse was our memory verse and it really has a rhythm that sticks in your head! Love it when that happens.

So in an effort to not be long winded, I'm just going to transfer my notes. (With a few parenthetical comments. Sorry, Seth, it's not going to be grammatically pretty, but are my posts ever?)

We can't plan our circumstances, but we can plan our faithfulness.

1. Every life needs a plan
We can plan our stand (stand means to rise up from sitting, kneeling or reclining - says we have to be active).
Are we going to continue reacting and living a train-wreck of a life or are we going to get a plan?
Job 17:11 - Job's plans were shattered
Prov 19:21 - our plan needs to be to fulfill the Lord's purpose.
(side note - there is a difference between Christ as Saviour - denotes one time commitment - and Christ as Lord - denotes continual commitment.)

2. The noble plan is to show God to your fellow man.
When we allow God to reign in us we become Isaiah 32:2&3
  • shelter
  • refuge
  • stream
  • shadow

all refer to God - we will be evidence of God in our own circle.

No matter where you are, you are here to be a benefit to the lost!

The point is not to be good, but to do good!

We've all had a lot of stuff happen and none of it is wasted - makes us a shelter, refuge, etc.

Do we live with regret over dumb decisions? A refuge is sanctified regret - it ways I understand (U2ME2) let me tell you how Jesus transformed me.

Without that failure we would think we are the great rock.

Word of caution: don't force shelter on people who want to stay in the storm!

(I love how Beth pulls the Greek and Hebrew out - reminds me of Greek in college - only Beth is so much more interesting to listen to)

Noble: "ndb" or "nadab" - to be willing - free - to be a willing volunteer - uncompelled free movement of the will for divine service or sacrifice.


3. All it takes to be noble is to be a willing volunteer.

Nothing paralyzes us like perfectionism. God uses us as we are. (Judges 5:1-9)

Humility - don't wait to be great to do what God wants us to do.

We can only make our outer body behave for so long - then we go back to what we want to - that is why we need to want to want Him.

4. The opposite of a noble is a nable.

Fool - "nbl" - "nabal" - stupid

Isaiah 32:5 - paraphrase - no longer will fools become celebrities.

Sometimes we need a hand over the mouth.

5. Any nabal can become a noble.

Eyes that see - develop God eyes

A nabal just doesn't get it - still living in a messed up mindset.

Abuser - even if told what they have done wrong - just doesn't get it. Sometimes we don't even get ourselves.

Thankfully, God looks beyond and sees our need - He "gets it" even when we don't. He knows everything & heals.

I don't have to understand - I just need to know He heals and gets it.

When He becomes King in our lives, then we can have ears that really listen. The most important part of counselling is the listening. (look people in the eye and give them your full attention).

The mind of the rash will understand - a nabal is always rash or reacts with impulse.

Understand - "bin" - to discern, to perceive, to observe - how to use the information you get wisely.

6. Any noble can become a nabal.

You are never too spiritual to blow it. (2 cor 11:2&3)

When you are a willing volunteer, you become a threat - be warned - be aware.

Satan wants to take a pure motive (being a shelter) and turn it into darkness. (Gal 6:1)

Don't become a refuge for sin - people need the knowledge that they can be different. We need to repent and have real authenticity.

If God put you in a position to lead - LEAD!!!!

7. The power of a noble trumps a nabal.

1 Sam 25 - heading, David, Nabal, & Abigail. Abigail was noble.

Abigail helped David avoid vengeance. Result: Nabal had heart attack (left alive for 10 days - was God giving him an opportunity to repent?) Abigail was still respectful to Nabal, but followed God's wisdom.

Hosea 14:4 - God voluntarily loves us - no one makes him - he is a willing volunteer - he is noble.


and in true Southern eloquence...

"scare the dogs under the bed!"

** So much for not being long-winded and please forgive any nabal errors in my grammar or typing abilities.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Billings Video

I'm still planning on recapping, but here is the video.

The photographer is a very nice man, named Rich, whom I'm sure thinks I am some crazy girl.

When I told my girlfriend, Mandy, that I was going to Beth Moore last weekend, she told me that her friend, Jill's cousin, Gretchen, was marrying Rich next weekend. I know, sounds like some bad country song.

The bad part is that Rich was standing near me several times that weekend and finally, I told him that my friend's friend's cousin was marrying him next weekend and I just wanted to say congratulations.

He said thank you, gracious man that he is, but I'm pretty sure he had security watching me for the rest of the conference.

Living Proof Live Billings Montana from Rich Kalonick on Vimeo.

Friday, September 19, 2008

My Date with Beth

I just spent the evening with Beth Moore and Travis Cottrell.

Okay, not like a personal visit, but they are here in Billings with the Living Proof Team and they are awesome. I am just so thankful that they are willing servants for God. I am definitely the receipiant of blessing because of it.

I will recap the weekend when it is over and I have digested it.

For now, let's just say that God is awesome...In Christ Alone still brings me to tears...and Beth allows God to speak through her in such a way that every woman's hearts are touched!


Do Diet Coke and a chocolate chip cookie count as lunch?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Mother : Daughter :: Jennifer : Mikalah

I really loved school when I was younger, but there were some things that we learned that I just didn't like.

Word Problems: I got too involved in the story to actually solve it. I mean, why did Farmer Brown buy the pigs before building the fence for them? And where are the pigs now while he is figuring out what size pen to build? And did he figure in the cost of hardware and a gate? Will it be wood? And what color will he stain it? Does he know how much work pigs are? Did he research that beforehand? Because he apparently didn't prepare to house them!

Library: the Dewey decimal system really doesn't make sense organizationally. And really why memorize it if I still have to look up where the book is located.

English: our language is messed up. I really do enjoy English, but I dislike some aspects. Take analogies for instance. You remember pages of these on the SAT - really dislike that part of the test.
  • born : died :: ugly : beautiful
  • thermometer : degree :: ruler : inch
  • street : boulevard :: construct : build

Those are some easier ones that Mikalah brought home from school today. However, I think she inherited my confusion when it comes to analogies because this was one of hers as well...

  • birds : feathers :: humans : socks

Happy Birthday, Mikalah, I love you, and I'm sorry you inherited that part of my DNA.

God Cares About A Pointy-toed Kitten-heel Shoe

In our Bible study this week we were starting to talk about having an intimate relationship with God. Part of that discussion included really listening for God and His "urgings".

So yesterday after I dropped Jeffrey at preschool I started running my errands. But I was a bit overwhelmed with everything "on my list". As I was driving around, I thought I should go to Goodwill.

Now understand that that is only a thought from God, because I can not stand going to Goodwill. Not only to I never find anything there, but the organization drives me nuts. So I dismissed the thought of course. Only to continue to be "bugged".

Then, of course, I have a bag of stuff to be dropped off at Goodwill - that's why I'm thinking I need to go there! I dropped the stuff off and the thought was complete.

I headed off to the mall to buy my favorite jeans, get Mike's glasses fixed and look for some brown heels for the Fall.

Jeans: check

Glasses: check

Shoes: on sale, sort of felt good, still $70 - no check!

Errand were now all done and I still had an hour before I had to pick up Jeffrey. What should I do?

Go to Goodwill.

What??? NO!!!

I started arguing with God. I never find anything there. It is full of germs. What a waste of time. Morgan is too fussy.

Okay, fine, but I'm gonna show you that it is not worth going there.

Did I really think I could show God something???

I walked in and headed right back for the shoes. The ones that are always worn, grandma like, or hoochy-mama and never in my size (because I might be persuaded to wear the hoochy-mama ones). There was a whole rack of brown, pointy-toed, kitten heel shoes. Brand new, never been worn. And in my size. $4.99.

Fine. You'd think my attitude was softened, but oh how I hate to be wrong!

So we found shoes, great, God, but clothes are a whole different matter. I mean look, they are organized by color! Not size. And a silk shirt is right next to a halter top that reads "I am just that sexy!" I won't find anything in there!

Oh how God loves me so much to break my hard little heart and bring me to my knees.

Twenty minutes later and only $35 poorer, this is what I walked out of the store with:

Thank you God, for not giving up on me. you are so GOOD!!!


1 pair of brown pointy-toed, kitten-heel shoes

1 tan trench-coat by Nicole Miller
1 yellow Izod sweater
1 off-white corduroy button down shirt from Eddie Bauer
1 black and white flouncy dress shirt
1 printed t-shirt from Talbots (that I wanted, but refused to pay $20 on sale three months ago - it was $1.99)
1 bag of cookie-cutters for the preschool.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Quick Dinner

Why is that a quick easy dinner of chicken from the grocery store was not so easy?

I remembered a few things I needed and ended up spending $45 dollars - with a $5 off coupon.

And isn't funny that I could remember - without looking - that Grands biscuits cook at 350 degrees, but crescents cook at 375. We don't get them usually, but that's just how much i love them!!!!

Lastly, I received yet another "new to me" computer. Mike did a computer shuffle again and now I have his old and recently repaired one. It is much smaller than my old one, but requires a cooling board because it gets sooooo hot. So really it's only smaller in theory.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

You Know...

...it's time to scrub your table and chairs when you try to get up from the breakfast table and stick to the seat.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


Grief is a funny thing.

Last night I had a dream that my family was on a wonderful vacation of course in some warm sunny, tropical location - minus the hurricane.

We were staying in a beautiful hotel - not a tent.

I took a small child into the bathroom - because I'm desperate to be done with diapers! I've told myself that once I have potty-trained our children I can purchase a nice purse for myself - one that does not need to hold diapers.

When I came out of the bathroom, my brothers and sisters where there.

Jinger was sitting on one of the beds playing with Meredith.

Josh was swinging Jeffrey up in the air - strong man (oh I hate that I really have to call him a man!)

Juliet was holding Bella with Adam behind her holding Tyler.

Laying on the bed, on her side with her head propped up on her hand chatting with Mikalah, was Joy. I could only see the back of her, but it was Joy. I woke up gasping for breathe. Then desperately tried to go back to sleep so I could see her again. And hoping to catch a glimpse of the other three.

Instead, Jeffrey crawled into bed with me and pressed his entire body up against mine. Just to make sure I knew he was there.

So this morning Joy is heavily on my mind. And we are headed off to church. To sing songs like My Saviour, My God and In Christ Alone.

I had asked God to give me a heart for teaching the preschoolers on Sunday mornings. Today I am looking forward to being with the little people that take lots of attention rather than sitting in service reflecting. Funny way He answers prayers.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Back To School

I really thought that as the four oldest went off to school I would have more time to do things, like blog. Somehow I have found myself with less time. Don't get me wrong, I have enjoyed running errands with just one child now that Jeffrey is also back at preschool, but somehow those hours just fly by. There have been so many things running through my head, that I am opting for a list format tonight. I'm sure each of these things could be posts by themselves, but oh well.

  1. Should I feel guilty that as many Kindergarten moms were crying the first day of school, Mike and I were giving each other high-fives?
  2. Mikalah is going to the junior high for math. JUNIOR HIGH!!!! Somehow just being there for one class allows me to ease into that idea.
  3. When we went to the junior high open house, a student council member gave us tour. She pointed out the classrooms, the gym, the library, and the elevator that is only used by the decapitated kids. That's our tax dollars at work!
  4. The weekend before school started we went to the lake with Mike's parents. It was a beautiful, enjoyable time with temps at 105! We tubed, skied, swam, and saw big horn sheep. I saw big horn sheep and enjoyed the boat ride and sunshine. We also set up "taj-ma-tent" and slept all eight of us. It wasn't bad, but really - I'd rather not camp. Can you tell I'm just not the outdoorsy type?
  5. Jarrett got his first bee sting that weekend. He was trying to squish the bee on his knee. Didn't work.
  6. Mikalah has outgrown her shoes again. She is now a size 8 or 8 1/2. I like that we can share shoes and increase my shoe collection. However, Mikalah thinks that means she can wear my three inch heels. I think not!
  7. When driving the kids to three different schools one morning, Morgan was chatting to herself. Her little voice is so sweet as she counts to 14...and then to seis in Spanish. Either Dora really is educational or we watch too much Dora.
  8. We have all contracted some sort of head cold. Meredith has already finished antibiotics for a double ear infection and Jeffrey is almost done with his. Meredith told us that when she blew her nose she couldn't get anything out of it, but if she sniffed her nose it came out her mouth. Lovely!
  9. Judson was complaining that he could hear out of his right ear. Not messing around, we went off to the ENT. Turns out the tube was falling out and was quite clogged. Unfortunately, he also had lots of fluid on his ear. Instead of scheduling surgery to replace the tube (set #6), the Dr. put a new one in in the office. The positives? Less than an hour in the office and Judson can hear better. The negatives? Having to get a numbing shot in the ear.
  10. The calendar changed to September and the highs went from the 90s+ to 56 and rainy. Oh that we could remain in Summer really until September 21st!!!!
  11. It is election time. Has anyone noticed? I've now listened to both candidates. Each have things that I like, but there is a single issue that is a deal breaker. I guess ultimately that makes me a single issue voter. I've made my decision, have you?
  12. Jarrett has decided he would rather live upstairs with Jeffrey than downstairs with Judson. Judson's thrilled, Jeffrey's thrilled, Mike's thrilled that we will be moving furniture this weekend.
  13. This weekend, we will also pull out the Fall clothes and put away the tank tops and swim suits. And dismantle the pool.
  14. MOPS Int'l asked me to do a workshop about the MOPS@ program at their convention in October. I agreed thinking it would be speaking to about 50 ladies. Just found out it will be to 184 ladies! Do you smell the fear?
  15. I had my yearly Dr. visit this last week. I told him I was falling apart. For one issue he said I should cut out caffeine. For another I needed rest. For another I needed exercise. And for the last I needed more caffeine. I decided rest and more caffeine would be following half the orders - right?