Archive for September, 2010

Are We There Yet?

(Our youngest hasn’t even mastered the tricycle and yet we have to keep reminding him his oldest sister’s bike is too big for him.)

How come the desire to run ahead causes me to desire the comfort of the past? The human condition has not changed since time began and I am not immune to it.

I have been letting myself go into a dark mood the last day or so and I wasn’t totally sure of the cause. Impatience is my newest suspicion.

We left our comfortable town because that was no longer where God wanted us. I have since let the idea that he has other plans for us, completely different from our own wash over me. So I thought I would be fine with it all now… now that I knew he had big things in store I was focused, well mostly focused, and for sure excited… but then nothing happened, or so I felt, for the last year, I developed impatience. After all, we left so lets start getting somewhere!

I started toying with the idea of how ‘things where better when’ … when we weren’t in line with God’s plan for our life… is that what I was thinking? Oh brother I am acting like the people of God when they got feed up and wanted to go back to Egypt! I honestly know there is no going back for me but… …

Thankfully the Lord never leaves me to my human conditions devices. Yesterday a speaker at a study I attended reminded me of Davids years of hiding from Saul and waiting for the kingdom he was already given by God. Those supposed wasted years where years of great learning. Our Lord is really good at giving us times to adjust, learn and grow into what is to come.

If I think about it really hard and stop being so worked up about what is ahead I realize we are growing here. When I stop thinking about the past with rose colored glasses I can see the good going on in the now.

I so appreciate the artistic minds, blessed by Christ, that turn these human experiences into word and song! It is no coincidence that these songs find me when I need to hear them… today the Spirit of the Lord lead me to a Sara Groves song. Click on the below link to read the whole thing.

Again it is time to get along with the truth and kick out the mood. And so I wait on the Lords timing.


Music Takes You Back

Feel free to click on the link to my husbands music page, it is on the side bar of my blog. He just recently remastered his two posted songs and the lullaby he wrote for our fourth child gets me every time. I find it so romantic that my man would put his artistic nature to work on something for me and my baby.

Just recently, with Baby Boy turning two, I have been struggling with missing my babies. I imagine them so warm and small in my arms again… I think about how soft and delicate they all where… That song is a bitter sweet blessing, sometimes feeling like to much to listen to. The lullaby brings me right back, in the blink of an eye, in the amount of time it takes to play and hear the first few notes, to when we brought our boy home and to that time when my man began composing the piece. It soothed our baby boy so much and even now it is helping to sooth me by gifting me with an easy passage back to memories of my babies.


A Fountain of Misinformation??!!

Oh I am giggling as I post this… Saturday night somehow it got out about my library training and then later I was talking about tea, like the tea lover I am, and they teased me that I truely am a good librarian type because of my fountain of information in the world of obscure knowledge.

Today I checked up on myself and with red face realised I may have provided them with inacurate facts about tea and caffeine content! Horror of horrors I hope they read this post and graceously forgive me. Lets blame it on the fact that I was barely able to talk, due to my cold, and was on cold meds!

6 different sources on tea could not agree to the actual amount of caffiene in different tea varieties. They also couldn’t agree as to whether white or green was stronger. I fear some of the disagreements had to do with advertising. One company felt it an advantage to say their tea had more caffiene then cola and the next (different brand but same tea leaf variety) showed cola higher up the chart then their tea. Coffee still wins for caffiene content across the board.

> drip coffee
> black tea
> oolong tea
> white tea
> green tea
> decaf tea (still has some caffeine)
> roobois/honeybush/ herbal tea (NO caffeine)

Here are some lovely tea sites that I enjoyed looking through and hope to check out more in the future, first this one and then this one for my Canadian pals!

Anyone have some lovely tea websites to recommend me?


Thankful Thoughts

Is thankful for a lovely weekend.
Thankful for the warm fall day that made an outdoor party for my two year old possible.
Thankful for family who makes me feel special by coming to little life events.
Thankful for how handsome my man looks when he decides to buzz all his hair off again.
Thankful for the bunk beds my handsome man is making for our boys!
Thankful for how big and healthy my littlest one is in spite of how often he got sick these last two years.
Thankful for how sweet my biggest boy can be.
Thankful for how strong and beautiful my daughters continue to grow.
Thankful for the ladies who visited over cards and treats on Saturday night, I needed something social!

Thankful for a week of things to look forward too… library story time with the littlest two, a new ladies group that I joined for Tuesday mornings and the fact that a dear new friend is willing to come with me as I nervously navigate a new social circle, a ‘catch up with’ coffee date for Wednesday with another dear new friend, a shopping trip with my m.i.l. on Thursday and a very empty Friday that is thus full of possibilities!

I am so thankful for cups of tea, strong garlic hummus to snack on and a night to sit and not talk after a busy weekend… hoping my voice will return and the cold will be gone SOON!


Mama Be Straight With Me!

Perhaps it was the farm life style that lent a hand to my parents ability to be very honest with me about life and death growing up… maybe it was how they where raised…. I always like to examine how they did things. Then I fiddle with it in my head and try to figure out why they did it the way they did but even if I don’t get a juicy answers I appreciate when they did it right. As a parent myself I know a lot of what goes on is ‘flying by the seat of your pants’.

Honesty between my kids and I is such a blessing.

I knew my mom would answer what ever questions about life I had. She told me today she felt like she was giving me another building block of life, something that would make me healthier and stronger in a scary world, when I would ask her big questions and she could give me a straight answer. It was like a victory, to get there before someone else, someone less concerned with me as a person, delivered the misinformation.

My oldest three already approach their Dad and I, at random, with BIG questions and it is a good feeling to stop, pray, think about it, and give them a clear answer. They might have a few more connected questions but usually it is a short chat and they walk away with a confidence that they aren’t in the dark. I am so thankful for open communication with my kids. I pray for mama wisdom a great deal and I pray they continue to let me help them in this way.


Trying On Jackets Again

No matter how old you get you will find you get used to a time of life and start to think it defines you and that it will always be you.

Be prepared to always grow!

When do you earn… gain the right… to be labeled ‘a runner’ or ‘a musician’ or ‘an artist’? Does it involve training, require natural born talent, the validation of your peers (the willingness of them to tag you with this label) or a mix of and/or all of the above? Is there a required amount of hours put in before you receive it or is it something (like motherhood) that you have to grow into once you are already given the job?

I am not talking careers here, I am talking passions.

As I find the time in this new stage of life to dust off hobbies, perhaps even passions of mine, that I put off while I was immersed in the most demanding physical years of motherhood I am faced with a collection of unruly emotions. I believe love involves sacrifice and I spent years happily sacrificing my interests and, dare I say, talents so I would be less distracted from the beautiful task of raising my four babies. It might have been a struggle at points when my self would roar up for ‘ME’ but mostly it was a relief. My personality was such that I had never been very comfortable putting myself out there as a specific type of person, you know, defined by your abilities or interests. I was relieved to put them aside and devote myself to children. I found great passion in being a mom, the label fit and the job description was totally for me.

The funny thing about being a mom is you work so very hard at it so that one day your child can live independently of you… Somehow I convinced myself through it all that I was pretty well rounded as a mom, that I had me stuff, that I wasn’t just MOM… but why then would fear be involved when I face the prospect of having to be woman and not just mom… why would it be so scary to move to a stage where I can do more stuff outside of motherhood that I enjoy?

I think one earns the right to a label when it moves your heart to joy, when you look forward to it, want to talk about it and gain self reward from it enough, cherish it enough, to not need all others to accept it. You do it for you and understand it isn’t who you are but part of who you are.

So here I go, picking up those labels I had put away, with hands shaking, so be it. Some I am happy to see and others just don’t fit anymore… and that is okay because I am letting myself grow. Others might find that hard to understand. It is human nature to label others and seek to keep them in that box. We must, however, never just accept the labels put upon us by others, even by ‘friends’, when you know in your heart it isn’t a jacket you fit.


I; Her Comedian

(He makes me laugh, and I love that about him, but lets not remind him to much because if encouraged, at all, he gets worse and worse!)
The later I remain awake the sillier the tune.

Late hours of the night the artist in me doth bloom.

The artistry of humor, it really doesn’t suite her.

Clearly, however, it doth suite me,

faithfully accompanied with endless cups of caffeine rich tea.TTFN

An Invention:)

I like to invent meals as I go and only now and then do I remember to write down what I did. This is a favorite recent idea of mine.

Green and Red Soup with Sour Dough Croutons

5 cloves of garlic

1 large onion

2 cups chopped celery

2 Tbsps grape seed oil

8 cups chicken or veggie broth

Salt to taste

1 tsp turmeric

4 cups broke up broccoli

1/2 -1 cup of red quinoa

1 cup chopped parsley

2 cups fresh spinach

3 cups of small salsa meatballs

  • Smash and chop up the garlic, cut up the onion and celery as well and cook till soft in the grape seed oil.
  • Once onion mix is nice and soft add the broth and warm it up. (tip- if you don’t have enough broth, I realised too late I only had 4 cups of chicken broth, add water to make up the rest and just add more turmeric and salt to give it the right color and taste of a salty broth)
  • Once broth is hot add the broccoli and let it come to a boil.
  • When it is boiling add your quinoa. You will know it is done when the grain germ starts to float around.
  • Once the grain is cooked and the broccoli soft but not mushy, add the parsley and spinach.
  • When the spinach has wilted throw in the precooked meatballs and cook till they are warm.
  • Serve with croutons on top.

Salsa Meatballs are pretty simple. Mix 2 lbs of ground meat with 1/2 a cup of salsa, 1 egg and enough wheat germ and oat bran to make it the right consistency to mold. Roll them and roast them at 400 for about 8 minutes each side. The smaller you make them for the soup the better.

Sour Dough Croutons are simple too. I had some old sour dough so I chopped it up and tossed it in olive oil and Italian seasonings. I then spread them out on a cookie pan and roasted till golden and crispy, turning over half way through so they where evenly cooked.

I had both the croutons and the meatballs made ahead and frozen so it was pretty easy to wipe this up tonight.


This Mommy Loves A Little Fist Full of Weeds.

Posting a comment the other day on a fellow blogger’s post brought back a sweet memory.Last spring Big Boy came home with a fist full of weeds for me regularly. I always smiled, gave him a kiss on the head and put them in water till they wilted the next day. By then he always had more for me.

One day he came home angry. Big Boy huffed and puffed as he gave them to me. I asked what the problem was and he said ‘I don’t think I should even give them to you. The neighbor boy said you would only say you like them. He said Mommy’s don’t like weeds.”

My heart went into my throat and I was stunned for a minute. Visions of me stuffing a hand full of weeds in the neighborhood boys face flashed in my mind and then I remembered he was someones big boy too. “Well what do you think?”

He was thoughtful for a minute and then said “I think you like them because we love each other.”

“EXACTLY!” I grinned, couldn’t have said that better myself. I gave him a big squeeze and proudly put his weeds in water and then placed them on the dining room table. “Perhaps not all mom’s like weeds. I don’t know how they all feel. BUT I know how I feel when you bring them to me. I feel special and so I like them always!”

His happy little face beaming at me as I put the flowers on the table told me the crisis was averted.

It is hard to find gentlemen now a days, even among adults, so his gentleman heart showing through always fills my heart with hope, warmth and thankfulness. The hope is there because I really desire him to grow up this thoughtful, from this kind of great boy into a kind and great man.


Killer Time Management for Busy Families (Marriage Mondays)

Do less…
I picked this topic out of the choices given because it has been specifically something I am working through of late. With school starting up again everything else kicks in to gear; church and social opportunities as well as activities for the kids and the parents. I was full of anxiety as time eaters invaded my schedule. There was going to be no time for mistakes, the little things, LIFE…

As a single income family of six in the city I find we struggle with the temptation to try to keep up with the culture around us. Financial damage is NOT worth taking on in order to put ourselves out there more. Family time equals family health and this highly valuable commodity must be fought for now a days. Personally I just can’t take a crazy pace either. It quickly becomes to much for me and I hate missing the moment while I rush to another moment. Time is so precious and so easily taken away from a family.

Less in more in my world… The simple life is to be sought… Over and over we must remember it isn’t the rat race we want to join but the race that Paul talks about, that race to the finish line, that race with Jesus.

With all these things heavy on our hearts my husband and I chose this year to do less then others expect of us. It isn’t easy and goes against the energy outside our front door, the cultural mind set that pushes and pulls with its demands on a family. Our main activity this year is to seek out more time to be, time to be for all six members of the family.

TIME, handle with care!

P.S. Check out this link to a post I put up in the middle of our amazing summer, it relates, and is about all the fun to be had when you have an abundance of time to do nothing really!

First Monday of every month at Chrysalis