Tuesday, March 25, 2014

My Yellow Room

A girl's bedroom.  Such a world!  I will reflect on the bedroom I had while growing up on Bridgewater Lane.  These first two pics weren't at this house, but they have the right toy chest and bedding so I had to include these!  I remember yellow floral wallpaper, and yellow and white gingham bedding to go with my white bed.  I loved the toy chest that held all my toys!  The walls had praying little kids framed in yellow.  It was such a happy room.  I had it all too myself until Kiley was old enough to move her crib right in.  I am pretty sure they were afraid she would keep me up with all her screaming fits, but I don't recall ever missing sleep due to her antics! 

I can remember getting ready while it was still dark outside, wondering if it was going to be cold as we walked to the bus. I remember laying in bed the night before Christmas, totally wishing morning would get here already!  I would sneak out of bed and lay at the door frame of the threshold, wishing the shut door wasn't between me and all the presents I wish I could see my parents getting out of hiding.  The next morning finally came, and my parents would let me out, and I would smile ear to ear as I walked down the hall to see if Santa came or not.

I remember laying on my bed, reading Anne of Green Gables.  I remember sitting in my closet and entering the latest drama into my diary.  He loves me.  He loves me not.  I remember my sticker books full of puffy, glittery, and sweet smelling stickers! I remember writing down lyrics to goofy songs, some of which I can still sing today, ha!   I remember sobbing myself to sleep because what's-her-name at recess was mean to me once again. No reason to give out names because I am sure it was a different girl every year.  I hate girl drama.  {I love having boys!}

Now, I was the queen of Barbies.  I had the most awesome Barbie townhouse you could ever imagine! I had Barbie families and I played with them all. the. time.  I would dress the ladies in their best fashion gowns and whisk them away to the ball, then I would have them come home and throw their clothes into the fake washer and dryer. 

I loved dolls, too.  I had this one boy doll named Cody and I am pretty sure he was my most favorite doll ever.  He had thick blond hair and real baby boy parts...lol!!!  I also loved my Cabbage Patch dolls and my Barbie-head-on-a-stand.  Pretty sure that Barbie-head-on-a-stand gave me some mad makeup skills to use later on and land me a job with Merle Norman Cosmetics.

I remember feeling like a princess in that room.  Growing up is hard.  Sometimes I wish I could go back and be that little girl, full of dreams and innocence.  It was a time when yellow flowers danced on the walls, baby dolls rocked in my arms, and sweet sleep only alluded on Christmas Eve.

This is my first day of school, you guys.  Can you tell I have
never ever been a morning person?!  ha!

Hello Spring Break

We were jolted awake by Cade, our oldest, two nights ago.  I hear water.

Oh nooooooooooooooooo.  We ran to see what he was talking about only to find water pouring out of our attic, floors squishy in our house, and ceilings ready to cave in.

The hot water tank burst.  And it is in the attic.  {Don't get me started on how stupid I think it is to put a hot water tank in the attic!}

Water was all over the attic floorboard, all over ceilings, in between walls, all over the carpets, all over the garage floor, all under a bathroom sink, yada yada.

I am thankful for three things:  we weren't out of town while on spring break, insurance will help cover some of the damage, and no one was hurt.

It isn't exactly what you want to deal with when you only moved in 8-9 months ago.

But, alas, it is what it is.

Now, we have a wall that has been ripped open in the garage in order to get all the wet insulation out.  We have carpets ripped out.  We have wind tunnel fans blowing that either make a great noise machine at night or a great reason to think you are going insane, take your pick. We also have a dehumidifier that keeps our home a nice and balmy 80 degrees.  If I squeeze my eyes shut, I can pretend that I am at the beach during spring break as the wind from the fans whips the hair off my head.

Hello spring break.

Thank you, God, for preparing a heavenly home for me.

{no more hassles, pain, sorrow, grief, tears, or frustrations}

It is going to be awesome.  It is going to be awesome.  All this &#@$&$%* down here will be worth it in the end.  It is going to be awesome.

Friday, March 21, 2014

My Childhood Kitchen

In an effort to write more, I am using a series of writing prompts to help jog my memory regarding my childhood.  Today, I wanted to tell you about my childhood kitchen.

The home on Bridgewater Lane will always be my childhood home, the home my Dad built for us.   I lived there from 2-14.  The brown paneled walls of that home house the vast majority of my childhood memories.  I've wanted to forever go back and purchase the house and land just because I will always feel like it belongs to my family.  To me.

 Amazing the memories a single room of the house can hold.  I often think the kitchen is the most important room of the house.  Moms gather around counters, fixing up nourishing meals while administering truth into little souls sitting high on bar stools. 

The first thing I remember is the window above the sink.  Our home sat on five acres, and the window allowed us to look out over the pasture and whichever animals we had at the time.  I mostly remember seeing Buddy, our bay horse.  I also can smell the honeysuckle that climbed the huge tree that fell along the fence line.  Mom opened those windows and turned on the attic fan whenever the honeysuckle was in bloom.  It is still one of my favorite scents.

The kitchen sink is probably where we first started to get trained for work.  My older brother, Devin, and I had to unload the dishes, load the dishes, hand wash some dishes, scrub potatoes, and fix tea. After the dishes were done, we would douse comet all over the yellow sink and scrub away at all the black marks the dishes left behind.

Our golden hued counter tops were large enough to have a full set of bar stools.  So, we would almost always eat our meals together at the bar.  I remember the bar stools were straw colored wicker and we would have to dump them upside down to get the crumbs all out before we swept.  I have good memories about that bar...from eating meals, to praying together, to doing homework, including a huge project about all the American Presidents.

And the Tupperware!  If it was a burnt orange or maroon or sunny yellow or avocado green shade then we probably had it, especially in the cups department!

And let me tell you about the pantry! It was huge and housed all our canned and dried foods. I remember rows and rows of baby food.  It seemed I was always responsible for getting down cans that were high up.  Cream of mushroom soup, anyone?  More than once, I dropped a can on the bridge of my nose, which has left a nice little permanent indentation. 

I can see Kirby as a baby in the Johnny Jump up, hanging in the door frame of the kitchen.  I can see Amelia as an infant, sitting in her carrier, watching the world.  I can see Kiley, encircled with friends, blowing out birthday candles.  I can see my Mom, hovered over a pot of oatmeal, while still dark outside. I can see her reaching high into the pantry to get down our valentine surprises that she had hidden.

I grew up in a kitchen that fed me.  Mind, body, and spirit.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Meeting Annie Gray!

Got my love tank filled up today!  Annie Gray is pure sugar and I got to take a few pics of her!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Annie Gray

For you, sweet friend. Congrats on your precious lil girly girl! She is just so squishy and perfect!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Asher {10 months}

10 months!  Probably my favorite age ever!!!  Their little personalities just come into full play at this age! His two top teeth have come in and it totally takes away his "baby" look, sniff.  Here are a few things I want to remember:
*Height and weight 65%
*4 teeth
*loves baby food, progressing more towards real food, loves bread and real sweet potatoes and yogurt
*crawls, pulls up, can stand just for a second, cruises around furniture
*says mama, dada, baba, etc
*when I get him out of his crib and we leave his room, he starts looking all around and jumping up and down in my arms, hoping his brothers are around!
*sleeps 12 hours straight at night and 2 naps
*favors Eli and Cade the most
*fun loving and passionate, loves to be around people, hates to be confined
*loves all dogs and is not afraid of them
*likes to read and look at the pages
*graduated to a bigger carseat
*can "smack" his lips while eating or pretending to give a kiss...does this on command and it is hilarious!
*likes stuffed animals, especially Elmo

 Snow day, snow day.  Asher loves snow days because he gets to play with his brothers all day!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Abortion {Assaulting the Image of God}

I've prayed and prayed about how to write this post.  I have considered tossing it aside, but I want to share a glimpse of what my heart is beating for right now.  Abortion is a topic I have always been passionate about, but lately, the fire is so strong that I am ablaze most days.  I don't know yet how to funnel this passion, maybe pray with me?

It is a topic that I can hardly talk about without either leaving the room snot faced or yelling for no other reason than righteous anger boiling over.  I think that is why I am most afraid to share my heart, because I don't want it to come across as judgmental or condemning.  My heart aches just as much for women who have chosen abortion who are now living in silent prisons of shame as it does for the baby who never had the chance to be cuddled against those same women.

Satan wants to thin the herd so to speak, to separate the weak. Funny how he lies and says that strong women choose abortion, only to toss them aside as the weak after they have chosen that route.  My heart beats for these women, but that is not what this particular post is about. Today, I want to speak for the ones that were never given the chance.

After praying on how to do this, God showed me a beautiful thing I had never noticed before. In the book of Luke, we know that John the Baptist was born only a few months before Jesus the Messiah.  His purpose was to prepare the way for the Messiah.  We see John the Baptist fulfilling that role in a precious way across the pages of scripture.  What caught me off guard was that John's prophetic God-appointed mission in life even started while in the womb!!! 

"In those days Mary arose and went with haste to the hill country, to a town in Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.  And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb.  And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!  And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?  For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy."  Luke 1:39-44

Elizabeth is about 6 months pregnant at this point and doesn't realize that Mary is expecting a baby until her own unborn baby leaps for joy and the Holy Spirit overcomes her with the knowledge that Mary is carrying the LORD himself!  We see John in the womb, without ever having taken his first breath, already fulfilling the commission of God, to turn people to the Lord.  He leaps for joy when he is first in the presence of the long awaited Holy One! It was as if John couldn't even wait to be born to start pointing people to who Jesus is!

The baby felt Joy.  That means the Bible is clear.  Even unborn babies can feel. God has a sweet mission for every single baby and that mission even starts while in the womb!

Alan Keyes is one of my favorite speakers.  He loves the word, loves life, and loves Jesus.  He says something so true and yet so disturbing.  He says when we choose abortion, we are assaulting the image of God.  When we abort, we kill off His likeness. Abortion is an offense towards God Himself not just because He created the child, but because that child bears His very image.

How sneaky of Satan.  Kill.  Steal.  Destroy.  Anything and everything that just might point to God's representation.

Here are a few abortion stats I wanted to share:

1.  Out of all abortions, only 1% or less are due to rape or incest. 

2.  Over 1 million babies a year die in America due to abortion.  To put this in perspective, the Nazis killed about 1 million Jewish children in the Holocaust.  Americans kill that many every single year.

3.  It is estimated (in the US) that since 1973 (Roe v. Wade) 55 million people were never allowed life due to abortion.  These people could have pointed to the glory of God, but instead were cut out, sucked out, or injected, all in the name of privacy and personal selfish freedom.

4.  93% of babies prenatally diagnosed with Down Syndrome are aborted.  Only 7 out of 100 are allowed breath.  This totally leaves me undone.  Isn't it just like Satan to twist things and call it being "merciful." The enemy is telling us we are being compassionate towards these babies if we choose murder.  Think about how twisted this is! Every life is precious!

5.  Abortion truly is genocide, "a deliberate and systematic destruction of a particular group."  The targeted group is unwanted unborn children. 

6.  Planned Parenthood is full of lies.  On their site, they state that having an abortion in not psychologically or emotionally dangerous.  They say you will experience more emotional disturbance by having childbirth than having an abortion.  They say that serious, long-term emotional problems after abortion are uncommon. 

7.  There is now a movement called "after birth abortion."  "When circumstances occur after birth such that they would have justified abortion, what we call after-birth abortion should be permissible. … [W]e propose to call this practice ‘after-birth abortion’, rather than ‘infanticide,’ to emphasize that the moral status of the individual killed is comparable with that of a fetus … rather than to that of a child. Therefore, we claim that killing a newborn could be ethically permissible in all the circumstances where abortion would be. Such circumstances include cases where the newborn has the potential to have an (at least) acceptable life, but the well-being of the family is at risk." 

Our God cares about each generation, each child, each soul.  He thought each person up, knitting him  together in his mother's womb, and gracing each person to bear His image.

"...so that a people yet to be created may praise the Lord...to set free those who were doomed to die...to declare His name."  Psalm 102 18-21

I wonder what my part is in this atrocious story that has infiltrated our culture.  It seems so hopeless at times, so I have to remind myself that God is concerned with each baby.  Saving one baby means something.  It means everything.

I know for a fact that pregnancy life centers really do make a difference.  When troubled young women are really presented the facts, they will often choose life!  We, as Christians are not paralyzed nor are we hopeless!  We each can do something, even if it is giving to or volunteering at places like Life Choices here in town. 

Satan wants us to believe that he has won this war called abortion, but he is gravely mistaken. 

"Whatever mischief may be brewing against the cause of God and truth, and I dare say there is very much going on at this moment, for neither the devil, nor the atheists are long quiet, this we are sure of, the Lord knows all about it, and he has his Esther and his Mordecai ready at their posts to frustrate their design.  The Lord has his men well placed, and his ambushes hidden in their coverts, to surprise his foes.  We need never be afraid but what the Lord has forestalled his enemies and provided against their mischief."  Spurgeon

The church is powerful because we have been bought by the blood of the Lamb.  The gates of hell will not overcome the church.

Have you considered your role in fighting against the assault of His image?