About Me

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Saint Joseph, MO, United States
I'm a stay at home Mom of two children and I have the unique privilege of being able to homeschool both of them. I am a stepmother to two older daughters one who is going to college. I enjoy shopping, baking, cooking, cleaning, organizing, running, clowning, making soap, playing piano and lately painting with ASCP paint! I am learning to enjoy the little things in life and make the most of it...clinging to my Savior through the tears that life brings and enjoying his GRACE He gives us every day! Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

What Legacy Do you Want to Leave?

Yesterday, Trey had his last soccer game until it starts back up again in spring. We have been greatly blessed with an amazing coach who we believe is a Christian. I'm not certain of that but yesterday after his actions I believe him to be. He goes to a local church here in St. Joseph and we consider ourselves very lucky for Trey to be under his coaching.

ANYWAY, our team is pretty good they have lost 2 of eight games and I believe that they did very well. Trey has gotten much better than when he started playing and I believe that to be because of his coach. His coach gives him positive feedback but still tells him what he's doing wrong. He encourages him but when he's doing something he shouldn't he tells him so. He basically "sandwiches" it. I have to say that yesterday I was again reminded how lucky we were by watching the coach on the opposing team. This coach had his team yelling at one another, the goalie was smarting off to everyone! They were the kind of kids you wanted to go grab them by their ears and pull them off the field. This coach was yelling at the refs and then started yelling at our coach to proclaim his annoyance. Our coach just looked at him and smiled and said nothing and went right back to coaching his team! I myself wanted to go grab the coach and get in his face at how ridiculous he was being (kinda would have lost the point there eh?) but our coach just took it all in stride. What made this even "sweeter" shall we say is we still won. Normally, good guys it seems finish last but in this case we did win and not just by one either. Afterwards as I was telling my son what can we learn from this game and its not: let's yell at the goalie and talk back to him and be on his level as that it what he was doing to us. I was the Mom over there on the other side of the field waving my arms like a crazy yelling to my son in my head "do NOT engage! do NOT engage! DO NOT ENGAGE!" Oh, to see this in adults and children makes me crazy! What are we teaching our children?

When I was growing up I cheered and that's basically as far into sports as I ventured. I was more musically inclined and did lots of piano competitions but still sports was never my thing. I absolutely hate competition. The only way a coach could get anywhere with me was to tell me that I COULDN'T do something. As a parent and looking on the other side of this now I'm trying to remember what it was like when I was the one "doing" and trying to remember the crazy things that went on in my head. I then recalled the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to me in the history of my life!

I was a junior in highschool. It was my first year of cheering and I was...well...not so good at first. It was a soccer game (perhaps that's what jolted my memory!) and it was our very FIRST time out on the floor for our "floor cheer". I started in and then this horrible thing came over me and I completely froze. For those of you thinking I just forgot a little let me make this soo crystal clear to you that you understand the magnitude of this error I COMPLETELY FORGOT THE WHOLE STINKING CHEER AND STOOD THERE AND PRAYED FOR THE GROUND TO SWALLOW ME! "Swallow me now dear ground! Lord, help time to stand still right now and for me to get out of this!" I remember seeing my coach just look at me urging me on with her eyes and inside my head......only AIR...not a single thought could I grasp. I didn't dare look at my parents who by now I'm sure were like wishing the ground would swallow them to. Afterwards, after I said I would NEVER cheer again, that I was a hopeless case, a complete disaster and I would never be able to show my face in public ever again. To me, life was over.....just as fast as it had begun it was over! I don't remember much after it was practically eighteen years ago but I do remember my parents...My Dad just said "Oh well, you forgot! Try harder next time and oh well..." What would have been my reaction if the roles were reversed? Have we become parents that feel that our children not only should be amazing in EVERY sport they do as well as music as well as studies that we forget all the amazing lessons that they are to teach us about life and most importantly about ourselves?

Ellianna has gymnastics tomorrow and I'm fully prepared for them to tell me to wait...to tell me she's not ready and if she's not? Well, I hope that I will not be the parent filled with anxiety thinking I failed or feeling that there is something wrong with my child.

I want to learn to watch my children and their accomplishments and let them be THIER accomplishments and when they fail I don't want to be the parent hiding I want my children to see that just because they mess up doesn't mean they are worthless but means there are more lessons to be learned! I want them to strive for excellence for themselves not compare themselves with others. I don't mean I don't want them to win its just that I don't want them to miss the lessons on the way to winning!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Those Potty Days!

Today I have no insight. I have no amazing things to say, no wisdom to give you. Today I just want to share a typical day in the life of little ol me.

I had the opportunity today to get my hair done and spend the rest of the day Christmas shopping ALONE. For some of you this may not be a very amazing feat but when you spend all day with your kids every day homeschooling them some time away is greatly appreciated and looked forward to! It keeps me sane to be able to walk every aisle of a store without hearing "Mom, Ellie hit me! Mommy, Trey won't give me back my toy!" Those of you who are Mom's I'm sure that you know what I'm talking about.

So, I got bangs today! I haven't had bangs in at least seven years!
Felt good to have a change. I'm really enjoying the change!

Then after I got my Christmas shopping done I went home to find the house in pretty good order after my super duper baby sitter made sure that everything was in pretty good order. Then after a normal dinner it was time to get Ellianna ready for bed.

I was in her room straightening while she decided to go potty. Then I noticed that Ellianna was being very quiet so I walked into the bathroom to find my CHILD sitting there by the potty basically playing with toilet paper in the potty!!! Needless to say I freaked out! Picked her up, stripped her clothes washed her, brushed her teeth, all the while shouting "EWWWW Ellianna Yucky, why did you do that?" Why in heavens name is this child so gross??? Yesterday she decided that she would fill the whole sink with water and put the handtowel in it. When will this fascination with water be OVER!! My Ellianna! Oh my goodness! When I prayed for a daughter I prayed for blonde curly hair with big blue eyes that was healthy and I so got it! I envisioned a little petite girl that was dainty. My Ellie is NOT. She marches to the beat of a different drum. I will never forget realizing that Ellianna was not ready for ballet when all the other little girls were dancing so sweetly across the floor and my Ellianna was ROLLING across the floor! I mean ROLLING!!!!

I think that when our children are born we envision what they will be like and for me both of my children are completely different then what I had envisioned. I realize that Ellianna will not always be playing in potty water (I certainly hope so) but for now I'm taking childhood one day at a time. Trying to laugh at the "funny" things Ellianna does and enjoying the time with her before its gone. I know that its going fast and I so wish I could hit the "Pause" button.

I also believe that in being a mother to my two children that God gave them to me and only me because He knew that they needed me and I needed them. Having children who "push" you and have very "loud" personalities makes me become an all around better person and better Mom. I can't think of anyone else who could help me grow "out of my perfectionism" better than my own children.

So, after I have shared this very embarrassing story I KNOW that you all have to have some to! I would LOVE to hear them!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Can It Really Be that Simple?

Today was enrichment classes and as always I'm always amazed and encouraged by the women who surround me. Today was no exemption to that. We were discussing time management and how that sometimes we as home school Mom's get carried away in comparing ourselves to each other and thinking that we have to overcompensate our children and do absolutely EVERYTHING on the activity calendar with sports, music you name it! It was refreshing to hear all the wisdom that was given and to voice our concerns and our fears. I was also feeling very guilty for NOT putting Trey in certain activities that perhaps I should have started sooner (like soccer) and I feel that now I might be pushing Ellianna to much(just took her out of ballet because she's not ready, but on the advice of the teacher put her in gymnastics) Feeling scared that I push to much and sometimes not enough. Afraid that I will be a Mom that is in the car constantly and wondering why I'm so STRESSED. After listening to theses ladies I now know that I HAVE to continue to pray about it and listen to my kids about what they really enjoy and what they can learn from rather than pushing them to be involved and be the best in EVERYTHING I can think of. I can say that I have started saying no but after listening to these ladies I now feel much better about it. It's so wonderful to see that others struggle with what I do!

Still, as easy as this is to accept I must transfer it from my head to my heart which is no easy task. I must confess for three days now I have had three chores that I have left undone....I know sigh...gasp....seriously? Yep! and some of you who think how awful that is I'm pretty proud of myself. Yep! I have left those bathrooms go unclean for four days!!! yep yep yep! AND I haven't got my wood floor cleaner out in four days to clean my two flights of wood stairs AND I have gone two days without cleaning my kitchen floor! YES, I just admitted this at a public setting where now everyone knows that the Segrist house is NOT spotless! As much as you might be appalled at my confession please understand what a TRULY REMARKABLE feat this has been for me. You see, I have decided that my children are more important, that school and really ENJOYING school is more important and plus this week we have had doctor's appointments and interruption that has caused me to have to let some "cleaning" duties go. To most women this might not be a difficulty at all.....I call you "well balanced". For me, however, a recovering OCD, perfectionist, NEAT freak this is a BIG deal and voicing it in a public forum even bigger. I'm learning that if your house isn't spotless it doesn't make you a bad housekeeper or person it just means that you have learned to prioritize and right now school is the most important and the house will get clean sometime this week that's for sure.

However, lest you think I'm bragging I know how far I have to go. I keep telling myself everyday why isn't this weight falling off faster?? HEllOOOOOOOOOOO!!! Just because you drink a million gallons of water each day but don't exercise don't think the weight is going to slide out of my belly button! SERIOUSLY! I need to get up and get moving for even just 20 minutes NO excuses get moving. I know that in order to be effective as a homeschool Mom I must manage not only my kids activites but my personal time as well. If I'm constantly giving and not taking time to take care of myself then there will be no energy to take care of my children, my home and my husband. I must make a commitment to do things for myself to increase my energy and make me feel better.



It's so easy to roll in self pity and to make myself feel that I have failed and I have not done what I should have done. I was looking at all these little kids tonight playing soccer and I thought I should have started Trey sooner, why didn't I? Then as he got in the car he was very upset with the way practice had gone and some of the other boys making fun of him for not getting an easy shot and inside I was the one that was feeling bad. "Oh if only I had started him in soccer earlier like he wanted than he wouldn't be feeling this way." That's so ridiculous I can't even believe I wrote it just now! However, I do it all the time and I'm pretty sure you all do to. To me this is when the biggest lessons can be learned. Teaching Trey to work hard at something and come out on top or knowing how far you've come but you didn't get there easily it took a lot of HARD work but I find myself feeling guilty that he has to learn that lesson but imagine if he was an adult and still hadn't learned it what then? I find that overcoming my battles are so important not only for me but for those little eyes that are watching. I can't tell him to work hard at soccer and not complain if I'm constantly talking about how much weight I want to lose and that I never have time to do that and that I'm sorry I started him late and on and on the excuses go. However, I'm pretty sure that he will catch up next year and I'm pretty sure that he won't be thirty talking about how awful his mother was that she didn't start him in soccer until he was ten.

So, tomorrow I do have on my checklist things to get clean and school and calls to make but most of all am I going to continue to beat myself up for the things I didn't do and continue to put off the things I can do?

Stay tuned sisters I have a feeling this will be a LONG battle!

Monday, October 25, 2010

How do you homeschool more than one?

I stand in awe at many of you homeschool Mom's out there that have more than one that you homeschool. In particular I think of you that have four children and wonder HOW in the world you do it? I am coping o.k. with doing preschool with Ellianna and teaching Trey but wondering how I will do as Ellianna gets older?

For now when we get up in the morning Trey has his subjects that he is able to do on his own while I do morning chores etc and get Ellianna ready for the day. Then, we switch over to me checking all that he has done for the day then he does some chores and piano while I do preschool with Ellianna. Then its time for lunch and "recess" and then I do English, creative writing, history, and grammar with Trey and review Latin but I am totally wondering what I will do when Ellianna is ready for more in about two years. How will I have time to clean or cook or ANYTHING at all?

Any opinions or suggestions or schedules as to what you all do will be appreciated.

Why Do I Care?

Today I had a doctors appointment for Trey and Ellianna. It was a well visit for both of them and since I am a "smart" mother I never tell my children EXACTLY what will happen at the appointment like shots etc. A good thing since Ellianna had to get two shots and Trey one. I'm sorry to say that Trey was worse than Ellianna with shots so much so I thought that I would have to hold him down. We also see a chiropracter who gives us vitamins and supplements that help with allergies etc. I always am very up front with our doctors about what we do but always laugh at the same reactions that they give me. You know what I mean....the deer in the headlights look.....at why in the world anyone would think that actually works??? Well, for my family it does! THEN the dreaded question to Trey. O.k Trey what grade? What school do you go to? He replied home schooled and the OOOHHHHHHHH that follows. I find myself always being over the top on my kids after they find out trying to make them see that we AREN'T weird we ARE normal but inside I always feel like crawling into a cave by this point. I always think to myself why in the world do I care so much? Why is it so important to have EVERYONES approval? Inside I was wondering "what do they really think?" but really does it matter? Who am I trying to impress?

Then since we were out I decided to run one more errand and of course I felt that everyone was staring at us because "why in the world wasn't Trey in SCHOOL." I found myself almost cranky with my kids I was so uncomfortable! It was ridiculous. I tell my children that we are doing nothing wrong and we have nothing to be ashamed of. In case you all are wondering there are people that home school incorrectly. They have school for two hours a day twice a week and are always at the mall. Their children wear pants up to their navel with high waters and white socks and their hair greased over. They don't allow their children to socialize with others because of the "influence" that their children will have with others. I do not choose to home school in this way. We have a set time every day for school and a schedule. I have logs and lesson plans and we are involved in outside homeschool classes as well as community sports. However, as much as I explain this I still worry about what others may think. Crazy but I do!

Last night we met for our Beth Moore Bible Study. We were discussing fear. It was amazing how that at first one lady would share...then another....then another....until finally pretty much everyone in that room had shared something very personal. Some of us put our feelings out there and I know for me that was very SCARY. I found that pretty much every single person there felt the same as I did but was almost to scared to share anything with. I so enjoyed that. Knowing that we as women can instantly bond like that when we finally get "real" with each other.

To me, the hardest thing about being a woman is letting myself be "real". Not hiding behind an exterior that makes me "look" like I have it all together. My husband says I carry myself in a very "self assured" way. It's funny I don't FEEL that way. Why do I always worry what others think? Why am I constantly seeking approval? Why do I feel the need to have everyone LIKE me and then when they don't beat myself up trying to figure out why they don't? How old will I be when I'm finally past this?

I wonder what you all struggle with and if you have broken free from it how have you done so?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

It All Comes Down to This!

I believe in timing. I believe that when God speaks to most people He speaks softly however, He usually has to shout at me! I'm normally one that sits there and says "hmm that's interesting and so is that, and wow, that could really apply to that to...." Well sister, I just have to say "OK God I hear ya, I got ya!"

It is no coincidence that three months ago I started down the road on finally closing the book to Ron's death and blaming myself for it. It is absolutely MY time to have MY meeting with God and to get it all hashed out once and for all.

I had to have the uncomfortable conversation with parties involved which then sparked another uncomfortable conversation with my young son and then....well...I had to let it go. Then I decided to take a Beth Moore study on Esther and well today I was doing Day four on week five. The Title was "No Satisfaction" It was apparent the second paragraph down what I was to get out of this. Here is the first tidbit " Make no mistake, we serve whatever masters us, and nothing masters us more completely than the person who refuses to bow to our rights, desires, or demands. We become fixated on the one from whom we cannot get what we want." For me that "want" is forgiveness. Then she went on to say "If we got what we needed or wanted from the person of our preoccupation would it fix us?" WOW! that's a very loaded question! She then had us write down what our prayer would be to the Lord if we could choose what we really wanted to happen between this person and ourselves. It all comes down to me forgiving myself for Trey's life, Ron's life and my own. "God is the only One who can tend to the secret places where pain calls to bondage." I can truly say that I have now done this. "In doing so, we find Christ as we've never known Him and there pooled in the reflection of His eyes, startle to discover that a part of ourselves resembles Him."

Please don't think that I think for a moment that Satan doesn't have my number and won't be calling me back to this again and again but as I continue to give it back to God Satan will eventually become bored and move on to something else...there's always something isn't there? What a joy to let this go and be starting on my way to freedom!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Being a Stepmother

For some of you who are stepmothers this is a club that you probably thought you would never be in. I know that in my upbringing this was certainly something that I never dreamed would be a part of my reality.

So, if you have read this far and are still reading its probably because you are interested in what I have to say and NOT in judging me (at least that's what I hope).

I have been blessed with two stepdaughters. In the beginning it was rough and I mean rough. Elisha is the oldest and is now sixteen and I believe that we are very close now but in the beginning she was the tough shell to crack. She is stubborn, smart, and very disorganized. She hates it when people make her cry and she doesn't ever want to disappoint my husband or myself. She loves God and walks very close to Him. She puts me to shame when I look at her. She is messy, she is stubborn, she is forgetful but I love her as my own daughter.

Sarah is my youngest stepdaughter. Sarah was seven when I married her Daddy and she accepted me with wide open arms (I mean WIDE!!!!!) She is the one who taught my son Trey how to get dirty. She was a CRAZY kid and made me laugh so hard. She has the weirdest ways of doing things but I do love her. She is the whole and complete reason that a Miss Dot exists. It is Sarah who encouraged me to be silly. I didn't want to be silly, I didn't want to laugh and Sarah MADE me. No, she really did. She came up with the fattest clown costume and big shoes and wig you have ever seen and MADE me be silly for a fall party and ever since then I have been HOOKED on clowning. So, if you like Miss Dot give Sarah a pat on the back because its all HER!!!

Blending families is hard...in the beginning I didn't think we would make it. WE were five individuals nursing hurts from others that caused US pain. We didn't do anything to deserve them we were just the "victims" of what was now our reality and we were "put" together and what we have now is a really great blended family (Most of the time!)

Elisha knows what she wants in life and has very big plans. I have no doubt that she will do well in this life and bless many peoples lives. She and Trey are very close because they are very much the same mindset. The only exception being that one TALKS WAY more than the other (bet you can't guess who that is!) Sarah....my dear Sarah. Sarah is my...well...Sarah walks to the beat of a different drum but lately seems to be understanding of what life may hand her if she doesn't get on board soon. Sarah hates loud things, she hates confrontation and will run far away to make it stop. She loves to draw but hardly ever does, love to write but you practically have to snatch it our of her hand and when you do.....well....its really good! She's quiet and I miss that silly girl who would laugh and scream and run all over the place when she was little but that's "so not cool" now.

I wish that I could have seen them grow up and put bows in their hair. We have silly stories of Sarah when I first started dating Mark and how she would come to church with her hair lopsided boasting that "I did it myself" Inside I was screaming "SOMEONE PLEASE give me a hairbrush NOW!" but I just stood there and smiled "Yes, I see that you did!" Now walk back here so no one thinks your with us....I DIDN'T REALLY SAY THAT!!! (thought it, didn't say it though!!!!)

I know that someday when they get married I won't be the one in the front of the church standing first. I know that when they graduate highschool I won't be the one having the big party and I know that someday if they decide to have babies my place will be on the side of the room until they ask me to hold their precious bundle of joy and I have to say that my heart hurts a little because of that but I know that they have their Mom who gave birth to them and that's her place and that's o.k.

I have rocked them when they cried at night for things that made me angry because it wasn't their fault (they may not even remember them). I have sat there and wiped their tears when they told me things that made them mad that I couldn't change and I have laughed with them about silly stories from school but my role as a stepmother what is it really? I hope that I have been the kind of woman that they know walks with God. Even though I know that my attitude when this house is messy is....well....less than Christlike and I'm sure that I've yelled at them and said things that i shouldn't have said. My role though...what is it? Well, its different from Mom...its kinda both...somedays when their Mom isn't here and they need one I'm their Mom....other days I take on the role of Aunt I guess but whatever my role is this day this very day I will try to be a woman that they know they can always come home to...tell their hurts, their dreams and yell about their frustrations and if I'm privileged enough to be allowed in their club of being included in "Mom only" activities than I will take them as they come and thank God for that privilege and when its time for me to step aside....I will pray for the right heart to do that to. I don't ever want them to feel that they have to spare my feelings. I want them to have the freedom of choosing who they want to choose and not worrying about whose feelings they are hurting. I'll be o.k........just hand me the chocolates.....I'll be the one eating the fistful of them and better hand me the tissues to because I'll be wiping my eyes with the tissues. They are close to spreading their wings and flying away from our nest and even though I didn't give birth to them my heart will break just the same when they leave.

What a privilege to be a stepmother!

What's your craziest dream?

I am sitting down right now in the middle of the afternoon. Guilt is filling my very soul as I sit here. We got done early with school and I had some projects that went rather smoothly and are done. Trey and Ellie are watching a movie upstairs and I decided to sit down for awhile. Why I feel guilty I don't know but I do. My list has two things not yet checked off and I am truly working hard on sitting in this chair ALLOWING myself to stay put.

Today I got a magazine in the mail that I subscribe to. It's call The Cross and the Clown. Some may think it weird that I get this and I find myself wondering what our mailman thinks....after all he delievers clown supplies and homeschool supplies and things from Victorian Trading company? Just how many interests can one woman have??? ANYWAY, as I got out my magazine I looked at the front cover and it had the large TNT christian clown conference picture where you really can get a degree in clown arts. I have desired for so long to go to this but time or money have not been allowed to make this a reality.

Have you ever desired to do something so bad but something keeps holding you back? I feel that in my heart clowning is something that I KNOW God can use me with and has but I'm so terrified to go to a place where there are professionals all around me...how embarrassing to say when I got home that I couldn't even get a degree in clowning. THEN I got upset at myself for letting Satan once again win this battle before I had even gone out and done it!

I love doing it, I get a blessing each time I do it. Each time I decide to let myself go and to reach deep inside and grab that part of me that just doesn't care what others will think of me....very hard to do if you are a bit of a perfectionist...but again....that's what makes you a good clown...taking the imperfect and making it FUNNY!

About a month ago I clowned and have had some opportunities come up since then but like everyone I'm busy..I homeschool two, teach piano to three, do billing and payroll for the business, and then there is the laundry, cooking, bill paying ways that I must do so having the excuse that I'm to busy really does apply. However, I have noticed when I don't do it for awhile I kind of get in a bit of a....well....a bit of a bad attitude. I find myself not having the same outlook on life that I should. I find myself being more judgmental of others, not able to roll with the punches as much, just round about not being the best "me" I could ever be.

So, I guess what I'm trying to say is this year I'm really going to make an effort to push past my perfectionism and worrying about what others think of me and try to be...well....I guess the best Miss Dot I can be!

So, I suppose that what I'm saying is some day I want to be a real live clown! There I said it....now, what's your crazy dream? I know I can't be the ONLY one...o.k. maybe the only clown but....I bet NOT!!!!!!

They Make us Humble?

Children....they are such a blessing but lately I feel so overwhelmed and so tired of being overwhelmed. I think as Mom's we worry way to much on the failure of our children. Some of you I'm sure don't have this problem but I admit that I very much do.

For the past several weeks I have watched Ellianna in ballet/tap class and have become very concerned that she's not ready. I find it amazing that the very thing we criticize our children on we do from the very beginning. I was standing there comparing her to every child that was in there. I found myself apologizing out loud for when she would fall and disrupt the class. Of course everyone would laugh as she would find herself in the mirror and carry on a conversation, or twirl and twirl while singing a song loudly while the teacher was trying to conduct class. I know, I know she's only three! However, some of the other kids were only three to so why were they ready and mine was not?? I of course took the guilty road and I'm sure that many of you have gone down the very road. My Ellie needed tubes and I didn't push hard enough and finally switched pediatricians and THEN when she was two we got tubes. By then her hearing was behind and ever since then I have punished myself for it. I have spent hours talking to Ellie, helping her say words, going over and over things so much so my child was frustrated and I was to the point of crying. Why do you ask I did this? Well, I felt that if she wasn't caught up to her friends then it was MY fault. Even after she went to Children's Mercy and two specialist saw her and told me that she will catch up she understands and that's the biggest thing I still went down the road of GUILT!

So, after all that and not being ready for ballet I have taken myself down the road of GUILT again. Every day we do preschool together and every day I compare her to others and wonder if she's where she should be.

Then as I was watching my son play soccer tonight with all these other boys and became so frustrated with my son I was texting his coach to be harder on him (yes, let's keep that part to ourselves shall we) I finally GOT it! All kids are different! Yep, that's just a huge brain buster isn't it? I'm extremely slow to just now figure this out aren't I? I was watching Trey as he was playing soccer. He was running like a comedian, over exaggerating when the ball would hit him in the head and laughing when he missed? Obviously this is not how he plays a normal game or I would no longer have him play but then I noticed that there were two other boys playing exactly like him and two more boys that were totally in focus on what they were doing. Now, obviously I wish my son would have been more serious about his "job" at playing soccer but if his coach wasn't concerned and was letting the boys play then why was I in the van watching getting so worked up it was ridiculous?

Why do I as a parent get myself so worked up about ballet for a three year old that it takes me a whole week to recover from it? So ballet right now might not be her thing SO WHAT. Does that mean that I have failed as a mother? Why do I get so worked up about my kids constantly and take it so personally when they fail?

I believe in discipline and teaching our children the scriptures and how to become "nice" and responsible adults but as far as taking it so personally anymore I just can't. I pray that the Lord will make Himself real to both of them that they will learn to seek Him first in all that they do and that they will walk with Him always. I pray that they will seek to serve God above all else and that they honor his word and pray. However, I can't constantly get upset at their failures and internalize them. I must rely on the Heavenly Father to teach them His ways and keep praying for His leading on their lives.

I'm not saying I won't FREAK out when Ellianna is bad during Awana and Trey in soccer or homeschool classes. Instead, I hope to improve the problem but for the most part continally pray that God will move them always. Lord help me to cling to that!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Still Learning

I am doing the Esther study by Beth Moore and am finding it to be so much more than I ever thought possible. This week I missed the Sunday session because I had two great little boys that I had the privilege of watching and the video was on fear and I have to say that is one of my biggest struggles.

On Day one she got right to the point. We are in chapter five of Esther and I found that on day one I was already being greatly convicted. A couple of key points that I'm taking from Beth Moore (this is not my own amazing thoughts I wish but can't take the credit) "Our distrust of God tattles on us, tell our enemy exactly how to get to us. Many of us habitually rehearse, "if___________ ever happens, then I'll just ______. Our fears become like long bony index fingers pointing at our vulnerabilities. Once Satan sees what we believe would be the end of us, he threatens and torments us with it. Our conditional trust not only makes us an open target for enemy torment; it also positions us as negotiators and beggars before God instead of secure children who trust their lives to their faithful Father." ARE YOU FEELING CONVICTED YET???

I felt the words completely jumping off the pages. I felt my heart leaping and my palms sweaty. I felt in fear just reading the very words. On the next page Beth wanted us to write a list filled with our "ifs" with several things you fear most and your "thens" with new conclusions reflecting the hope of Scripture. I must confess dear friends that I left it BLANK! I couldn't even bring myself to WRITE down the things that I fear most. Now, after doing a few days of this study I feel a bit better about going back and doing what she asked but inside its as if I'm being asked to do something that I feel will only end in peril instead of what she's wanting us to learn....she's wanting us to realize that nothing absolutely NOTHING passes through the Father's hand that He doesn't know about but inside I'm screaming "I don't care! I don't want to learn those lessons, I don't want to be stronger. I want everyone and everything that I love to sit right here beside me and just BE." I don't want change, I don't want to GROW and I certainly don't want to hurt. I don't want to hurt one more day, one more minute and I'm sick of crying by the way! I don't want to cry one MORE minute. Does anyone else ever feel this way? It makes my stomach churn at my attitude. How dare I act as if I can control anything anyway and why do I feel that God is sitting up in heaven ready to "teach me a lesson." As much as I love my children my Heavenly Father loves them more. When will I ever learn this lesson and be free of the fear that robs the joy that could be mine in walking in freedom in Christ?

Today Mark had to go to the doctor to make sure that his "tumor" had not returned. Most wives would have gone with their husbands....not me....I felt staying away from the situation would make it go away, not exist if there was anything that they found. I went and ran a million errands and tried to not think about it....waiting anxiously for the phone call about what the doctor might say. The phone call came, my heart dropped...then suprised at the delightful outcome and then.....I went on...never stopping to pray and thank God....just staying busy and saying to myself...oh I'm so glad its fine this time but when will they check again??? Worry was already gripping at my spirit when God had just delivered us from a huge trial. So quick was I to engage in the next thing to worry about that I could not even enjoy the trial that He had led us through.

It's amazing to me that I'm still learning the same lessons over and over again. How frustrating that must be to a perfect God. I'm still learning the same lessons over and over and over again. Does anyone else make this mistake?

Oh Lord, please forgive me for my foolish heart, for my attitude that something BAD will always come my way, that I'm not deserving of your blessings, for living in FEAR of the unknown. Help me to learn to trust you and to know that I am SAFE in the knowledge of just being your child. Help me to be SECURE in that and put chains the fear that Satan lays on me every day!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Those Big Brown Eyes!

Do you ever have a weekend where you wish you could stop the clock and back up and change things? Do you wish that you could stop time and change what happened and then start it back? This weekend started out normal...busy, but normal. I had a two day garage sale with not to much drama. I only managed to make one elderly man very mad at me but other than that quite successful!(for those of you wondering he wanted me to go lower than I already had gone on an item, I didn't punch him or anything!) then we headed to soccer and then I was to go to a party.

At the party I found out some very sad news that just cut me to the core. The whole night I could think of nothing else. When I returned home my husband had invited a guest to dinner without telling me and I was so tired all I wanted was to sit in front of the television and veg...throw in an unexpected guest....a bit of a comment that really offended me from my husband....add in some tragic news...followed by a dash of exhaustion and you have ONE GRUMPY MAMMA BEAR!

Getting up this morning my main goal was I can't wait to take a NAP today! How many hours until that can happen? Pretty sad that I woke up wishing that I could go to bed and that's how I approached the whole day. After church was over we came home and got lunch ready and then headed out for the soccer game...I'm still counting down the hours until nap time by the way....after soccer my husband now decides that he wants to go get ice cream for the kids....I have splitting headache and really just WANTTA A NAP PLEASE!!!! So then he looks at me, my dear husband that is and says "Do you want to go get so and so (two dear boys that our dear friend was able to adopt from their horrible mother)" I wanted to say...."NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, I want to take a nap! Is ANYONE in the whole stinkin family listening to me? Can you NOT see the bags under my eyes? Am I not the crankiest person ever? Aren't you sick of me?" but INSTEAD I replied "Sure honey! that's a GREAT idea!" We get there to pick up the kids and they get into the van and smile so big and their Grandma comes to the van and tells us how tired she is and how thankful she is for us taking them and I still say and smile..."OH NO problem!" but inside I'm still thinking..."Now, how can I get in that nap? is it possible that can happen?" So, we drive home and those voices started cracking me up in the back and we got home and my husband says "Go, take your nap!" I joyously run up the stairs and climb into my bed my glorious bed! Oh how I've missed you my fluffy pillows.....then I hear sounds from downstairs where the boys were and my mind starts to imagine things (they are swinging from the chandeliers....?) long story short.....that was the end of my nap.

I woke up, went downstairs and allowed myself to be enjoy the riches of "childhood" I heard this deep voice coming out of this little boy with glasses and big brown eyes asking me questions, showing me his legos that "I have worked a long time on this!" and listening to all three boys talking at once and I thought "this is so much better than a nap!" I was blessed to be around these boys that had been adopted out of a difficult situation and to be able to participate in helping these boys was more fulfilling than a silly old nap could have ever been. Needless to say the boys are scheduled to come over on a weekly basis when possible and my little heart could not be more full. I was a "smitten" from the time those big brown eyes behind those glasses looked up at me and that BIG deep voice asked me a question.

So, I guess my point in all my rambling is..."When God tells you or your husband (in my case) to go do something...you better do it because I'm really glad I didn't get my nap today!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Look In the Mirror!

Today I have to say I had an "AHA" moment! I also like to call it a "God appointed" moment. When everything in my brain slows down and I'm able to concentrate and I GET IT!!! That is what happened with me today.

Every Tuesday we have a co-op so to speak of our homeschoolers and they meet with one another and take all sorts of classes. These classes are exceptional. Trey for instance is taking chess, choir and fun with food this semester. Last semester he took chess, choir and first aid. He's taken a history class and he's taken a mushim do class. They are very beneficial and gets him to meet other homeschool kids.

Last year, our group decided that because of some issues that have come up that it would be better for all Mom's to stay on location. It was at this time there was a bit of groaning. I have to agree I groaned a bit myself. The thought of keeping Ellianna happy for three hours was mind blowing (so I got a sitter called GRANDMA!) Anyway, this semester one of the ladies came up with a class where different mothers could give some "advice" so to speak. Today one of the ladies that spoke was speaking on curriculum. She is a very nice lady and I find her to be inspiring but the subject of curriculum was something I wasn't really interested in. We had found the curriculum I was enjoying so to me it didn't really seem to be of importance. BOY WAS I WRONG!

Through the course of her talk she was talking about how that her fondest memories were when she had "read alouds" with her kids and how much that meant to them as they grew older. She then went on to talk about how difficult her days were with some of her children and that now that she sits on the other side of that how that it was worth it. I started tearing up because this is so what I needed to hear. Some people have perfect children and if you do than God Bless You! However, I don't, and I don't think I would have realized some of the things if I did NOT homeschool. For instance, being around someone virtually all day I'm able to see how he reacts in all situations. Some good, most not. Through listening to this very wise woman I was able to gain some hope to keep "keeping on" that all was not lost on this journey. Then she said something that totally struck me and stopped me in my path. She said "Look in the mirror! If our children have lost their zeal for their subjects and so forth is it because we are acting like its such a drudgery?" I had to say that I am GUILTY! I don't always approach homeschooling as a JOY! I wish I did and I will try so very hard to change that but I have to say that I'm very much checking my list off making sure we get done what needs to be done but I'm not doing the "read alouds" so to speak, I'm not stopping to get my children excited about WHATEVER!!!! If our children are drudging through each lesson its possible that they are doing so because they are watching us do the same. I see that this affects all aspects of life not just homeschooling. It's very possible that I have had this problem long before I started homeschooling.

As a homeschool Mom I constantly feel inferior. Any time someone asks my children why we are out and Trey replies "we are homeschooled," we get the "OOOOH" and then they talk slower and look at us to see if we are dressed in Amish attire. It is almost laughable. Most people are positive but I always wonder what they are really thinking. I constantly feel the pull to over achieve so that we can say "See, we are better!" So, totally NOT the point. I homeschool because I felt I was homeschooling anyway every night with my son when he came home with homework. The biggest reason we switched to homeschooling was because I saw some MAJOR serious flaws in my child that had to have some RADICAL change.

Now however, I feel that my mindset must change and I must be IN this with a much more joyful heart NOT so much out to prove something. We will still continue on with our subjects as diligently as we have before but I will try very hard to go into it with a much more joyful heart and next time I start seeing things going downhill as quickly as they had I will take a look in the mirror first and then see how the attitudes change.

As for our home now we are still a work in progress but at least the Mamma Bear has a much better outlook on things. I must find JOY and not concentrate so hard on "filling the bucket." Truly an inspiring lesson and one that I hope to not forget any time soon.

Monday, October 11, 2010

My Ellie

Ellianna was a child I prayed for for many years. Which is why we named her Ellianna "God has answered!"  I had always hoped that I would have a daughter and was so blessed with her.  I even "wished" for blonde curly hair and beautiful blue eyes and I "got" it.  I couldn't believe that we were finally pregnant with her when I found out...so much in shock it took four pregnancy tests and the doctor herself to tell me for me to finally believe it to be so.


My pregnancy was difficult but I just kept thinking of that lovely baby and I didn't care if it was a boy or a girl but so hoping for a girl.  I was ever the optimist so I kept all tags on her stuff until "she" came out.  Ellianna's delivery was long and painful as most are but afterwards the recovery was so much better than it had been with Trey for my dear Trey was a very BIG boy! 

Ellianna was the kind of baby who wanted every thing "her" way.  She has always been that way since day one.  Homeschooling her this year was a bit scary.  I wondered if I would be able to give her what she needed.  I think those first few years are so critical and what if I stunted her reading or writing for heavens sake! Isn't it ridiculous that we teach our children to walk and talk and eat and run and go potty but we think we can't handle preschool.  Nevertheless, I have been quite nervous.  So much so, I bought three different curriculums and you know which one is the best?  THE CHEAPEST ONE!!! GRRRRR!

So, we have been doing well with letters and coloring in the lines so well my husband couldn't believe she did it but numbers....Ellianna just doesn't seem to really care and for all of you who know her that sounds typical.  She looked me in the face the other day and very matter of factly said "Mommy, I HATE math!"  I never called it math I called it counting but she must have heard Trey say it or something I have no idea!  So, we have been working on counting.  I have counted while we shop, talk, go for a walk just about everything I could think of and then....my husband walks in and tells me how well she is doing counting as he tucks her into bed! WHAT! Then as I stand outside her bedroom door I hear her soft little voice count to her Daddy! Part of me was...."Why in the world can't she count to me?" but inside I was singing "I taught her that, I taught her that, I taught her that"  YEAH!   So, those of you getting discouraged......don't give up! Perhaps the breakthrough is coming SOON!!!!!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Sin Will Always Come Back To Haunt Us

I have to confess my mind is weary.  My soul needs soothing.  Today I have wanted to hear God's word, God's music...and every time I sit down to BE STILL someone little comes in RIGHT when I'm getting ready to BE STILL.  I had to think after a moment or so that someone didn't want me to get a chance to BE STILL.  So, right now when I should be sleeping I am trying to be still.

Ever think that you have dealt with a problem and then as soon as you have HERE IT COMES again!  These past three months have helped me to take care of some things that aren't pretty and I don't like to think about it.  Some of you know my history, some of you wish you didn't know as much as you do but in knowing me you get to have the whole ENCHILADA so to speak! 

Lately, I've had to deal with my past not because I've wanted to but because it is being PUSHED in my face and I have to confront it.  Doesn't mean I have to be enraged by it or play into it in a negative way.  Just means that I have to deal with it, and MOVE on.  Unfortunately, this involved something that I have put off for years because I didn't want to hurt my son.  Under Godly counsel from our Pastor my husband and I were told that Trey needed to know the whole story of his life and this meant that there would be a very uncomfortable conversation.  I didn't want to have it and I have put it off for two months.  To tell your son something unpleasant and to see him cry as he found out that those that once in his life did things that they shouldn't have done brought up several emotions in me...anger...was the biggest one....why did I have to be the one that did this?  I didn't do the sin, but here I am paying for it once again? Something about this seems very....UNFAIR!  After I was working through these emotions I was able (with the help of my husband) teach Trey a lesson not many kids his age have to endure.....We are trying to teach him that it is o.k. to be angry at the sin...but you can't STAY there and that seems to be the hardest lesson to learn.  You should be angry at sin but then you must learn to forgive...doesn't mean you forget necessarily but you move on, you don't bring it up every chance you get....you don't stay there at the bottom of the cross. In my mind I picture me doing this..."Ok God here you go!" bend over pick it up, hold it, look at it, hold it some more, get angry about it....hold it some more....THEN after I'm all angry at it, have yelled at every one then I decide to put it down for a little while.  Does anyone else do this???

The truth is this...my husband Ron sinned....lest we all feel to high and mighty we all do.  Unfortunately, sin lead to a family being destroyed and a little boy lost his biological father forever but the story doesn't end there it just doesn't.  God gave Trey a father on this earth who in the last two days has given more wisdom to my son then I ever could.  Trey looked at me today and said "No offense Mom but Dad was really comforting to me after you talked last night kinda more than you, you know!"  I had to smile because when you have to go back and tell all that yucky stuff I was kind of .....well...out of it.  Thank heavens for a husband that saw some opportunities and took them.  Most of all I thank my Heavenly Father who even through a situation that I saw no possibility for hope, peace, or love and He has changed all of our lives for the better.  Ron is in heaven, his sin is forgiven and we can go on living with this knowledge, we are no longer in bondage.  

"Hear the good news, you've been invited no matter what others may say, your darkest sins will be forgiven, you will always have a place.
At the table of grace, the cups never empty the plates always full and its never to late to come and be filled with love never ending your always welcome at the table of grace." Phillips Craig and Dean

Did you hear that?  No matter what you've done, no matter what! There's always room for you! GRACE girls GRACE! Do you feel it?  Do you know it?

Believe it! Know it! Now LIVE it!  "your always welcome at the table of grace!"

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The White Dishes

Today I decided to put my white dishes in the garage sale.  It seems that lately I'm purging a lot from my life.  Lots of memories, lots of baggage, lots of stuff is getting carried down to the cross...hopefully there it will stay.

I've been thinking about those dishes all day...silly that I would but I have.  It's been almost fourteen years that I  have had those dishes and today they sit in the basement and hopefully they will go away to a new home next week. 

You see, those dishes belonged to Ron and I were given to me as a wedding present when life seemed blissfully perfect.

For the past three months I have really struggled.  I keep trying to keep my head up but at this point I don't know where to go or what to do.  The older my son becomes the more this seems to haunt me.  Tonight he was greatly troubled and very upset at the injustice of treatment towards.....me.  He is so upset that he doesn't really know what to do about it.  It is at this time that I feel guilt, and anger at things I cannot change.  I wish so many ways to change it but I cannot....I wish that it would go away...but it hasn't.....I wish that it never would have happened.....but it did. 

I have talked about forgiveness and how that there are some people that walk this earth who wish that I was not the one still living....that things were different.....that I did not exist...but I do.  There are those that say they love me...but their actions speak differently.  There are those who say that they only want the best for me....but they only want things the way they want them.

Do you ever grow so tired of talking about something that you don't want to talk about it anymore but you keep being pulled into it again and again?  You want to forgive and forget but that person or persons keeps bringing it up?  How do you go from there? How do you make it finally STOP???

The more I'm at church, the more Bible studies that I go to the more I hear....I cannot engage....I cannot let my "mean girl" rise up.  I have to let it go, let it go, let it go, let it go.

My God is big enough to fight for me.  My God knows that I didn't do those things.  My God knows that my heart is clean and my conscious is clear.

I will always miss Ron....I see glimpses of him and it breaks my heart and turns it inside out every time I see it.  The turn of the head, the way he runs, the way he sits, the way he won't stop talking....the smile he gives me.  I see Ron and I miss him...I miss laughing with him the way he used to but God needed him in heaven and God gave me a strong man, a wise man, a man who is very kind and has taken Trey to be his own and for that I'm grateful.  I'm grateful that God looked down on me and gave me a second chance at love, at motherhood and made me whole when I was a broken shell.  When I didn't think that life would ever matter again...when I didn't want to get up and LIVE anymore...when I didn't care about anything.  He gave me a little boy with big blue eyes and blonde hair that made me care about myself again and for that lesson I will always be grateful.

 A song that I love to play over and over and over.  It is a song that has given me great joy because it is exactly how I feel.  It is a song by Point of Grace called "You are Good."


"When its dark and its cold and I can't feel my soul you are...STILL good.  When the world has gone gray and the rain's here to stay you are...STILL good."  Oh Lord, help me to always say that! Oh Lord, help it to be so and forgive my heart as  I write that partly fearing that you will take something away from me again to see if its true...help me not to view you that way...Amen

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

If Your Happy and You Know It...Say....?

Today was a day that I had to laugh. Ellianna chose to make today....interesting! First she decided that she would use the facilities and then...well the details are still sketchy but she had a huge wad of WET toilet paper in the sink! YEs, after I quit yelling and using hand sanitizer like it was going out of style it was time for ballet! AT ballet Elliana decided that she was still feeling out of sorts and basically LONG story short BOTH of her teachers had to take turns holding hands with her to keep her FOCUSEd and only the threat of the "hand stamp" not being able to be had was the only thing keeping her on track. As we returned home and had lunch and preschool and then nap I noticed that upon entering her bedroom that she had decided to pour her apple carrot juice ALL over her Hello Kitty clock that is....in her defense a tea cup...yep...the poor thing NEVER had a chance. She stood there in tears as I threw it in her trashcan not understanding that since the clock now just blinked and blinked and said that it was 0:14 that there MIGHT be a problem!

After all of that and finishing up school with Trey and giving three piano lessons and dinner, laundry, and now working on bills for the store and then of course Ellianna's bath etc I just kept thinking to myself...am I getting through the day or am I enjoying, able to laugh, able to take in EVERY moment?

For the most part I am very content. I like being home with my children and being able to teach them. I like my small town and our church and I really am quite content but do I savor every moment? Do I take in the "little" things like I should or does it take something BIG to stir me up to make me understand and see that. After someone close to us passes away we remember, we stop and think about the "little things" I know I used to. AFter Ron died I remember crying on the way home every night around five because I knew that would be when he used to come home and I knew he wasn't....he wasn't coming. Even now as I look at the sunset I think about all the fathers, sons, who aren't coming home......but now....now I don't want to remember all that I want to only think of the good things in life but somehow I wish that I would remember to live each day to the fullest even if it is a day like...toilet paper in the sink or juice being spilled on the clock or my dropout ballet dancer:) I want the lesson without the pain? Is that possible? I certainly hope so

Monday, October 4, 2010

Today is the Day to DEAL!!!!


Ever have a problem that you know that you have to fix like right away and you keep putting it off? We live in an old home and the drain downstairs every time I would do the wash would overflow and I would have a small river running around my washing machine. I dealt with this for months! It became a little balancing act between the freezer and the wash as I would go downstairs for various things to see if I could manage to keep my slippers dry. AFTER I called the "drain man" which by the way took him maybe FIVE minutes to fix I can gladly say no more rivers!

Today was such a day but instead of that "something" being an object it was my beloved son. For weeks he has been out of sorts. I've been reading :Boundaries for Kids and applying those principles (sorta) and Don't Make me count to three! These are both great books and I have gained great wisdom but the problem is.....I HATE to take away something really big! Today, everything was going well...he was going along with school, day was going great THEN I decided to change things for a moment, a task needed to get done RIGHT then and you would have thought I asked him to go plow the backyard with a fork! He got snotty with me, argumentative, snippy, and downright rude! I was completely taken back! I sputtered and must have looked surprised as I stammered..."EXCUSE ME?" He seemed completely unfazed and continued talking to me as if I was no one important and he could sass me however he wanted because to him the whole idea was ridiculous that I would ask him to do something that I needed done when he was in the middle of something else. Long story short....his attitude is in check and he had to lose a very special boyscout event this evening (killed me to do it) and Monday night football (which is like the worst thing for him). I knew that I had to fix this right then I couldn't delay any longer. His character needed shaping and what was terrifying to me is that he didn't even realize it. I have been talking to other mothers about this problem with Trey. He can argue with you about the dumbest things for the longest time. I would compare him to a dog holding on to his chew toy for all he's worth no matter how much an owner would plead and reason that dog won't give it up.....that would be my Trey. I am trying so hard to show him that his life will be so hard if he continues but I remember.....

It wasn't so horribly long ago (doesn't seem that long ago) that there was a skinny, short tempered, long blonde hair, blue eyed ,freckle face kid that had the same problems only a bit different. I wasn't as smart as Trey is, so that made my tongue become very sharp. I learned early to cut people quickly so that they would leave me alone. As a child I made friends easily and was very loyal, as a teen especially in middle school I was hot tempered and well....not very nice. As a college age young person I finally got it figured out (sorta) and NOW......TADA! I'm.....well, I'm better! The point is, I know the rocky road I walked and trying so hard to prevent him from going down the same road and I'm waving the flag and he's still going and I'm cheering and he's still going! THE WRONG WAY!!!

I take to heart more than most Mom's about their children's path. I have worried about him from the time his biological father passed away. I have heard all the ministers saying "When the biological fathers are not present these children suffer." I kept thinking....this can't be? Isn't God a father to the fatherless? You can't tell me that all the boys that have lost their fathers are going to grow up horrible people that can't be??? I know that these ministers have the best intentions but I have to fervently disagree that because my son grew up without his biological father that something will be wrong with him. He is loved, he has a Dad that plays soccer, runs with him, talks with him, watches football with him and they are getting closer and some people we meet don't even know that Mark isn't his own biological father so why do I make such a big deal out of days like today? Why do I worry that he's going to grow up and have no friends, and no wife and no one will like him and he'll live all alone? All I can do is continue to pray that God will shine the light on the areas of his life that need improvement and that I will be the kind of parent that continues to deal out discipline to "show" him the way and that God will give me the strength to "deal" with him the way I need to even though it feels sooooooo very horrible and wrong to do.

I lay awake with worry, hoping and praying for God to change his heart and I see improvement and I'm so hoping and praying that he will see how his actions affect others and how to care for other people.

Chores

I have a funny little tidbit that was shared in our connection group today and wanted to get your thoughts on this.

It seemed that some of the men in our class couldn't understand why the women in the class didn't let the children do chores. Basically, these men were stuck helping or the wife was doing all of them and they didn't understand why we weren't letting the children do them.

As for me and my house the children have separate jobs:Trey vacuums both floors, waters flowers, carries in all groceries, takes care of the dog and helps with laundry. He also mowes the back yard. When the girls aren't here he takes all the laundry down in the morning and separates it and changes all the trashes in the house and takes it out. He can also do the dishwasher, run the clothes dryer and his favorite job is picking up doggy do! When the girls are here they do the trash and laundry. On top of this my children are all responsible for the beds being made WELL not just any old way and there is to be no clothing on the floor etc. I'm very picky about this.

Now, I realize that i don't let them really help with too much in the cleaning part but that is where the disagreement began. I believe that in some cases when I don't have the time that actually doing it myself is faster. My husband disagrees on this part. He thinks that i should make them do it for the sake of "teaching" them the skill. Helping them to be able to run a home someday. However, there are days that i'm just like I can't possibly take the time to show my child how to do this. When I do the bathroom looks horrible or the laundry didn't get put away correctly so its easier to do it ourselves and grumble rather then teaching our children.

So, those of you who have gone through this and come out on the other side I would like to hear from you. Those of you who let your kids do everything I'm intrigued by you and would like to know your secrets. Please, I'm very serious. We as women in connection want to know you thoughts! I'll be waiting!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Relationships????

I would ask that you allow me to babble a bit. My brain and body are tired but a "happy" tired. I was blessed this weekend by many things and saddened by others. I think my brain doesn't know if it should be happy or sad and I can't sleep so I'll just babble a bit if I may.

The last four days I've been dealing with "relationships". Then today in church it was about relationships...then tonight at the Beth Moore study it was about "mean girls" so to speak but also about.....relationships.....I'm not sure if maybe God is trying to tell me something or not??? hmmmmm I think God is trying to tell me something?

This week I've been focusing on our annual fall party that we have for friends and family every year. It's a big party and I try very hard to make it fun and enjoyable for everyone that attends. This year I focused on my connection group and some close friends. I wish we could invite all our friends but my budget and my home will not allow that, plus my "perfectionist" tendencies would probably overload. During the week I have had a pretty uneventful week with the occasional bump in the road but nothing serious. All of the sudden I had an event that exploded in my face! (not literally) I didn't see it coming, took me by complete suprise and when all was said and done I was standing there shaking my head wondering what could have possibly hit me so hard (not in the literal sense of course)and why? What did I deserve to receive such a blow?

Tonight at our Beth Moore study she focused on "It's tough being a woman in a mean world." and GIRL I so NEEDED that tonight!!!! Do you ever have a week and then the word of God and Beth Moore come BAM! and your like sitting there "Preach it sister!" That was how I felt tonight. Some of my favorite key phrases that she said were " Insecurity is at the heart of every rivalry" " There is nothing meaner than a coward" and my absolute favorite one " Coming in contact with a mean girl raises your own mean girls." GIRL, I was right there this week. I was so blown away by the events that inside I was raging with the injustice of it all. I couldn't understand the outcome AT ALL!!!!

I'm going out and being all vulnerable so please tread lightly but the hardest part for me being a woman is: Friendships! There I said it! I will tell you that I have friends, I wouldn't say a ton but I definitely have quite a few. However, I'm not sure about a "best" friend? I have wonderful women that I can call about all sorts of things and they respond quickly to me. I have lots of people that I'm very close to but if I had to choose just one I'm not sure that I do. Does anyone else have that problem. The idea of going to ladies retreats intrigues me. I want to go, I would love the fellowship but what keeps me from going is.....I have no one to share a room with. The crazy part that is.....I'm sure that there are others who feel the same way I do. So, why do I make up excuses for not going to something that I know I would enjoy and why do I feel that I can't just go up to someone and say "Hey, do you have a roommate for this event? How bout me? Is it possible that I still fear rejection from others even at the age of 36? What makes us as women so insecure that we can't reach out to other women that we KNOW love us and want the best for us? I still feel that I'm not accepted I guess....I guess I'm still afraid of what others will say or do or not being liked (does that sound like I'm in fourth grade or what?)

As I continue to ponder relationships this week may I look at them the way God would have me to. May I love those that hurt me with a spirit of love towards them the way God commands me to. May I figure out what my real "rival" is when I feel that spirit of "meanness" rise up in me and may I always seeks His face to make my heart clear to me. I never want to be someone who compares myself to others but compare my heart to Christ. It's so easy to say "I'm not that bad look at so and so." I never want to become so dilluted in myself that I can't see the condition of my own heart whether it be good or bad. Lord, let it be so!