A woman's walk through marriage, parenthood, servanthood and the family of God.
Friday, April 30, 2004
40 Days of Purpose: Day 6
Life on earth is a temporary assignment.
-In order to keep us from becoming too attached to earth, God allows us to feel a significant amount of discontent and dissatisfaction in life. We're not completely happy here because we're not supposed to be.
-In God's eyes the greatest heros of faith are not those who achieve prosperity, success, and power in this life, but those who serve faithfully, expecting their promised reward in eternity.
Question to Consider: How should the fact that life on earth is just a temporary assignment change the way I am living right now?
That's an easy one. I can really get bogged down in worries. If this life is temporary, then most of the stuff I worry about doesn't really matter. I should let go of the worry and trust God to provide what is needed in this life for me to be able to concentrate more fully on him.
Tonight is the first time our Purpose Driven Life group will meet. I'm excited about going and hearing what God's been saying to the others this week. It looks like it's going to be a really busy weekend for us so I'm not sure I will have time to post on the next two days readings. If not, I'll catch up on Monday.
It wasn't a hose on the car. It's something with the fan, but if I go slow and easy I can at least drive it back and forth to work today. That is a blessing! Tim is calling about the part.
Megan is off to Hershey, PA with Tim's sister's family this weekend. I don't think she could possibly be any more excited. I hope they have good weather and tons of fun. I will miss the little monkey.
Matt passed on the trip to stay home and shop for a tux for the prom. In remembering how much fun that was last year, I'd ask that you please say a prayer for me as I set out with him and THE DATE (just a friend, thank you) tomorrow morning. For some reason she doesn't trust Matt not to pick out something hideous. Could it be because next year he and a friend plan to duplicate the tuxes from Dumb and Dumber?
Saturday night the drivers I work with are having a "Spring Fling." Dinner, dancing......and unfortunately a lot of drinking. The crowd I hang out with doesn't do much of that, thank goodness, but we'll still have to bear the behavior of the rest. At least they are all happy drunks with no tendencies to violence.
Sunday we're heading to our friends Dave and Helen's house for a cookout after church. Matt is going with us. Their daughter will be thrilled. She has a major crush on him. Matt will take it with good humor, but he has no interest. From there we will have to drive to Tim's sister's place and pick up Megan.
posted by Stacy at 11:24 AM
Thursday, April 29, 2004
40 Days of Purpose: Day 5
How appropriate that today's reading was on seeing life from God's view. It talked about how the unspoken way we view life determines our expectations, values, relationships, goals and priorities. If our life view is faulty, we're not fulfilling the purposes God has for us.
The Bible offers three metaphores that teach God's view of life.
1. Life on earth is a test. Character is developed and revealed by tests, and all of life is a test. When we realize this, we will understand that nothing in life is insignificant. The good news is that we never have to face more than God has given us the grace to handle.
2. Life on earth is a trust. Our time, energy, intelligence, opportunities, relationships and resources are all gifts from God that he has entrusted to our care and management.
If we treat everything as a trust, God promises 3 rewards in eternity: affirmation, promotion and honor.
Money is both a test and a trust. God says there is a direct relationship between how we handle our money and the quality of our spiritual life. How we manage our money determines how much God trusts us with spiritual blessings.
Question to Consider: What has happened to me recently that I now realize was a test from God? What are the greatest matters God has entrusted to me?
Today was a test (and may still be). This morning the car overheated. I managed to baby it back to the parking lot at the bus garage, but couldn't do anything else with it. All the coolant had drained out the bottom somewhere and I couldn't see if it was a blown hose or what. To say I wasn't thrilled about being stuck at work is an understatement. Beautiful day and where am I? Crud. Everyone that was still around had kindergarden runs and left so I washed my bus. Then I washed another one. And another one. I ended up washing 4 buses. I was hot, sweaty, probably stinky and tired but I'd worked out my frustrations. I ended up having a lot of fun when people started coming back in and even ended up in a water battle. A guy I talk to a little offered to drive me home and that gave us a chance to talk and get to know each other a little better. It was kind of neat to see how he handled himself. He's known for being a nice guy, but really crude. Around me he watches himself and apologizes when something slips out. He knows I'm no prude, we do joke and get silly. He just knows I don't appreciate the crude stuff. Tim should get home soon and we're going to see what we can do about the car. He thinks it sounds like a hose. I hope so. Anything bigger is not in the budget right now. We'll see how I handle the rest of the test.
The greatest matters God's entrusted to me? My kids for starters. Parents can really screw up a kid. And in our case, Megan has some real issues going on. It really helps to know that God doesn't give me more than he can help me handle. Less personally, I always considered it a privilege and honor to teach the teens at church.
posted by Stacy at 7:11 PM
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
40 Days of Purpose: Day 4
This life is not all there is.
When you fully comprehend that there is more to life than just here and now, and you realize that life is just preparation for eternity, you will begin to live differently. You will start living in light of eternity, and that will color how you handle every relationship, task and circumstance.
So what is eternity with God going to be like? The Bible says, "No mere man has ever seen, heard or even imagined what wonderful things God has ready for those who love the Lord."
We have been given glimpses of eternity and know that we can expect:
-an eternal home
-to be reunited with loved ones who are believers
-to be released from all pain and suffering
-to be rewarded for our faithfulness
-to be assigned work we will enjoy doing
-unbroken fellowship with God
-to be enjoyed by God forever
Question to Ponder: Since I was made to last forever, what is the one thing I should stop doing and the one thing I should start doing today?
Like so many others lately, the first thing that comes to mind that I could/should eliminate from my life is....gulp....blogging. I try to be good, but some days it really eats up the time. I get a lot out of blogging and reading everyone else's blogs, but I'd probably get more out of spending my blogging time interacting with someone face to face. I'd definitely get more out of prayer or Bible study. I don't want to give up posting because I'm using it as an accountability tool during the 40 days, but I am vowing to stop reading so many other blogs. I may actually write myself a schedule of say, five a day to rotate through. That would free up a good bit of time.
What should I start doing today? Actively looking for ways to show kindness to the people I come in contact with. If it's all about love, then the best thing I can do is actively demonstrate love.
posted by Stacy at 11:06 AM
Time once again to share a few of the quirkier searches.
Can oedipus rex be explained in simple english? Not by me.
Simple school hairdos. Umm....ponytail? Buzz? Hat?
Mary Kate and Ashley get mud dumped on them. Oh, those girls gone wild.
Best way to kiss. Definitely with your lips......and it has nothing to do with tushy licking (which is still bringing them in).
How to tell my boyfriend not to call me stupid. Just tell him, honey. And then get yourself a new boyfriend that respects you.
posted by Stacy at 10:57 AM
Tuesday, April 27, 2004
I am a bad, bad soccer mommy. It is supposed to rain later today and all I can think is, YEA! NO SOCCER PRACTICE! I think my aversion has to do with the fact that we've yet to have nice weather on a soccer night and it's just great hanging around in the mud, cold and rain. The forecast for tonight includes thunderstorms and hail along with the rain, mud and falling temperatures, so maybe we'll actually get canceled. It would make life easier as Matt has another home volleyball game.
40 Days of Purpose: Day 3
WHAT DRIVES MY LIFE?
*the verb drive being defined as "to guide, to control or to direct."
5 Benefits of Purpose-Driven Living
1. Knowing your purpose gives meaning to your life-"I know what I am planning for you....'I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.'" (Jeremiah 29:11 NCV)
2. Knowing your purpose simplifies your life-It defines what you do and don't do. You simply ask, "Does this activity help me fulfill one of God's purposes for my life?" "You, Lord, give perfect peace to those who keep their purpose firm and put their trust in you." (Isaiah 26:3 TEV)
3. Knowing your purpose focuses your life-It concentrates your effort and energy on what's important. "Don't live carelessly, unthinkingly. Make sure you understand what the Master wants." (Ephesians 5:17 Msg)
4. Knowing your purpose motivates your life-Purpose always produces passion.
5. Knowing your purpose prepares you for eternity-"Remember each of us will stand personally before the judgement seat of God....Yes, each of us will have to give a personal account to God. (Romans 14:10b, 12 NLT) We are going to have to answer two questions: Did you accept my Son, did you learn to love and trust him? and What did you do with the gifts I gave you?
Question to Consider: What would my family and friends say is the driving force of my life? What do I want it to be?
Ouch! I have no idea what people would say drives me these days. I don't even know. A few years ago it would have been easy....my love of God and my passion for youth. I've lost that somewhere along the way. I've been living as one of those Rick Warren describes as restless wanderers without a purpose. I want to reclaim my purpose. I want loving and pleasing God to be what drives me.
posted by Stacy at 11:29 AM
Just for fun...
1. How Do You Catch a Unique Rabbit?
Unique Up On It.
2. How Do You Catch a Tame Rabbit?
Tame Way, Unique Up On It.
3. How Do Crazy People Go Through The Forest?
They Take The Psycho Path.
4. How Do You Get Holy Water?
You Boil The Hell Out Of It.
5. What Do Fish Say When They Hit a Concrete Wall?
6. What Do Eskimos Get From Sitting On The Ice too Long?
7. What Do You Call a Boomerang That Doesn't work?
8. What Do You Call Cheese That Isn't Yours?
9. What Do You Call Santa's Helpers?
10. What Do You Call Four Bullfighters In Quicksand?
11. What Do You Get From a Pampered Cow?
12. What Do You Get When You Cross a Snowman With a Vampire?
13. What Lies At The Bottom Of The Ocean And Twitches?
A Nervous Wreck.
14. What's The Difference Between Roast Beef And Pea Soup?
Anyone Can Roast Beef.
15. Where Do You Find a Dog With No Legs?
Right Where You Left Him.
16. Why Do Gorillas Have Big Nostrils?
Because They Have Big Fingers.
17. Why Don't Blind People Like To Sky Dive?
Because It Scares The Dog.
18. What Kind Of Coffee Was Served On The Titanic?
19. What Is The Difference Between a Harley And a Hoover?
The Location Of The Dirt Bag.
20. Why Did Pilgrims' Pants Always Fall Down?
Because They Wore Their Belt Buckle On Their Hat.
21. What's The Difference Between a Bad Golfer And a Bad Skydiver?
A Bad Golfer Goes, Whack, Dang!
A Bad Skydiver Goes Dang! Whack.
22. How Are a Texas Tornado And a Tennessee Divorce The Same?
Somebody's Gonna Lose A Trailer.
Now, admit it. At least one of these made you smile
posted by Stacy at 11:25 AM
Monday, April 26, 2004
40 Days of Purpose: Day 2
I AM NOT AN ACCIDENT.
I am alive because God wanted to create me. He didn't need to. He wasn't lonely. He wanted to express his love.
It does not matter if my parents were good, bad or indifferent. God chose them because they were the right parents to produce me the way I am.
There are no illegitimate children. God planned them all and his purpose took into account human error and sin.
Question to Consider: I know that God uniquely created me. What areas of my personality, background, and physical appearance am I struggling to accept?
*My parents weren't particularly social and it's easy for me to be the same way, content to be at home rather than reach out to others.
*Not knowing who my father is.
posted by Stacy at 10:31 AM
Sunday, April 25, 2004
College Board’s 101 Greatest Works of Literature:
[bold those you have read, italics for those you want to read]
Achebe, Chinua - Things Fall Apart
Agee, James - A Death in the Family
Austen, Jane - Pride and Prejudice
Baldwin, James - Go Tell It on the Mountain
Beckett, Samuel - Waiting for Godot
Bellow, Saul - The Adventures of Augie March
Brontë, Charlotte - Jane Eyre
Brontë, Emily - Wuthering Heights
Camus, Albert - The Stranger (in both English and French)
Cather, Willa - Death Comes for the Archbishop
Chaucer, Geoffrey - The Canterbury Tales
Chekhov, Anton - The Cherry Orchard
Chopin, Kate - The Awakening
Conrad, Joseph - Heart of Darkness
Cooper, James Fenimore - The Last of the Mohicans
Crane, Stephen - The Red Badge of Courage
Dante - Inferno
de Cervantes, Miguel - Don Quixote
Defoe, Daniel - Robinson Crusoe
Dickens, Charles - A Tale of Two Cities
Dostoyevsky, Fyodor - Crime and Punishment
Douglass, Frederick - Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
Dreiser, Theodore - An American Tragedy
Dumas, Alexandre - The Three Musketeers
Eliot, George - The Mill on the Floss
Ellison, Ralph - Invisible Man
Emerson, Ralph Waldo - Selected Essays
Faulkner, William - As I Lay Dying
Faulkner, William - The Sound and the Fury
Fielding, Henry - Tom Jones
Fitzgerald, F. Scott - The Great Gatsby
Flaubert, Gustave - Madame Bovary
Ford, Ford Madox - The Good Soldier
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von - Faust
Golding, William - Lord of the Flies
Hardy, Thomas - Tess of the d’Urbervilles
Hawthorne, Nathaniel - The Scarlet Letter
Heller, Joseph - Catch-22
Hemingway, Ernest - A Farewell to Arms
Homer - The Iliad
Homer - The Odyssey
Hugo, Victor - The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Hurston, Zora Neale - Their Eyes Were Watching God
Huxley, Aldous - Brave New World
Ibsen, Henrik - A Doll’s House
James, Henry - The Portrait of a Lady
James, Henry - The Turn of the Screw
Joyce, James - A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Kafka, Franz - The Metamorphosis
Kingston, Maxine Hong - The Woman Warrior
Lee, Harper - To Kill a Mockingbird
Lewis, Sinclair - Babbitt
London, Jack - The Call of the Wild
Mann, Thomas - The Magic Mountain
Marquez, Gabriel García - One Hundred Years of Solitude
Melville, Herman - Bartleby the Scrivener
Melville, Herman - Moby Dick
Miller, Arthur - The Crucible
Morrison, Toni - Beloved
O’Connor, Flannery - A Good Man is Hard to Find
O’Neill, Eugene - Long Day’s Journey into Night
Orwell, George - Animal Farm
Pasternak, Boris - Doctor Zhivago
Plath, Sylvia - The Bell Jar
Poe, Edgar Allan - Selected Tales
Proust, Marcel - Swann’s Way
Pynchon, Thomas - The Crying of Lot 49
Remarque, Erich Maria - All Quiet on the Western Front
Rostand, Edmond - Cyrano de Bergerac (in French)
Roth, Henry - Call It Sleep
Salinger, J.D. - The Catcher in the Rye
Shakespeare, William - Hamlet
Shakespeare, William - Macbeth
Shakespeare, William - A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Shakespeare, William - Romeo and Juliet
Shaw, George Bernard - Pygmalion
Shelley, Mary - Frankenstein
Silko, Leslie Marmon - Ceremony
Solzhenitsyn, Alexander - One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich
Sophocles - Antigone
Sophocles - Oedipus Rex
Steinbeck, John - The Grapes of Wrath
Stevenson, Robert Louis - Treasure Island
Stowe, Harriet Beecher - Uncle Tom’s Cabin
Swift, Jonathan - Gulliver’s Travels
Thackeray, William - Vanity Fair
Thoreau, Henry David - Walden
Tolstoy, Leo - War and Peace
Turgenev, Ivan - Fathers and Sons
Twain, Mark - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Voltaire - Candide
Vonnegut, Kurt Jr. - George Bergeron
Walker, Alice - The Color Purple
Wharton, Edith - The House of Mirth
Welty, Eudora - Collected Stories
Whitman, Walt - Leaves of Grass
Wilde, Oscar - The Picture of Dorian Gray
Williams, Tennessee - The Glass Menagerie
Woolf, Virginia - To the Lighthouse
Wright, Richard - Native Son
I've read 34 of them (a depressingly low number in my opinion). Thanks to Rick for the list.
posted by Stacy at 9:27 PM
Today is day one in the 40 Days of Purpose. I've decided to journal something about each day's reading, preaching or small group meeting so you, my faithful readers, can keep me accountable.
Rev. Dail preached his first sermon on The Purpose Driven Life this morning. Participating in this event is what brought us to this church. Tim and I both went through this before in small groups at our old church, but things were already falling apart at that point. Neither of us feel we got out of it what we should have, both because of our own mental and spiritual woundedness and because the church itself dropped the ball and didn't do its part. We are excited about doing it again and feel like this time we will find healing in learning about God's purposes for our lives.
Today's sermon asked and answered life's 3 greatest questions.
1. Question of existence: Why am I here?
A. I was created to be loved by God. (Eph. 1:4)
2. Question of significance: Does my life matter?
A. I was made to last forever. (2 Cor. 5:1)
3. Question of intention: What is my purpose?
A. I find my purpose by getting to know God. (Eph. 1:11)
Today's reading emphasized that it all begins with God.
Point to Ponder: It's not about me.
Verse to Remember: Everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. (Colossians 1:16b Msg)
Question to Consider: In spite of all the advertising around me, how can I remind myself that life is really about living for God, not myself? The best way I know is to stay focused on God, to connect with him continually each day through his Word and prayer. I know it's hard. My natural tendency is to be independent, to do things myself, on my own power. Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! I have to know God in order to find out what he wants and then allow him to lead me to it.
posted by Stacy at 5:05 PM
Saturday, April 24, 2004
40 Days of Purpose Kicks Off Today
I just dropped Matt off to visit and cheer up a friend. Please pray for Kenny. He's a great kid who's had some hard knocks in life, yet always keeps a positive attitude. He'll be graduating next month and his plans are to go into the Navy and become a jet mechanic or something like that. He needs the prayer because two weeks ago he messed up his knee playing basketball. At first the doctor didn't think it was too bad, but it turns out he tore ligaments and messed up the knee cap. He had surgery on it this past Thursday and it will most likely heal, but the doctor said it is an injury that will most likely cause the Navy to release him. Ouch! If he can't go there, I don't know what he will do with himself.
Megan's off at a friend's house, too, so it's just me and the dogs at home (Tim's working half a day). I'm taking advantage of the time to do nothing.....well, a little bit of laundry, but that's it. We're going to church this afternoon for the kick-off of the 40 Days of Purpose. We could have gone this morning for breakfast and then the video feed, but opted for dinner. I'm looking forward to it. This will be our first chance to fellowship and meet individuals and give us more of an idea of what folks are like. We're committed to the 40 Days of Purpose, but after that is still up in the air. I admit that what happens tonight will have some bearing on our decision. So far it's been two weeks since we filled out a visitor's card and we have yet to be contacted by anyone. That concerns me a little bit (and I think it's starting to bother Tim) but it's a big church which is something we're not used to. Maybe it just takes them longer to get around to it? Either way, it doesn't seem like a good practice. What if I was a seeker who heard something the week I attended and was waivering. Two weeks may close the window of opportunity. Anyway, I was trying to say that I want to see if we will feel any more welcomed as new comers.
posted by Stacy at 12:13 PM
Friday, April 23, 2004
Tim set the alarm earlier today. He forgot to tell me. What an unpleasant surprise (hey, we're talking about 4:00am here).
Another 28 days of school to survive and then it's summer vacation. Woooohoooo! I am so ready for that. Lately with all the kids' activities, work, yard projects, Tim working late, etc. I feel like I'm burning the candle at both ends. I'm looking forward to the slower pace of summer and taking that actual vacation.
posted by Stacy at 5:32 AM
Thursday, April 22, 2004
I just sat here and watched Dr. Phil's show. Thursdays are the days he works with married couples and families in on-going therapy. It just made me sick to see all these couples treating each other so horribly. They are all about "what's in it for me" and if their needs (wants) aren't being met, it becomes okay to go after those by any means....the other person's feelings, well-being or self-esteem be damned. They treat each other so badly. And their children are caught in and witness to it all. There's a good chance those children will grow up to repeat the pattern, not to mention the emotional damage they suffer from seeing their parents' behavior.
So, I was thinking.....these people have no clue. They went into marriage expecting success, but thinking it was going to be all about them and their happiness. No one ever told them any different. Popular culture reinforces the "me first" mentality. The shows that irk me the most are King of Queens, Everybody Loves Raymond and Life According to Jim. These are all billed as family shows, but next time they're on pay attention to the way the couples relate to each other. For the most part you will see deceit that is justified by getting what is desired, one partner (usually the wife) belittling the other, constant bickering and/or bullying, but then the happy couple makes up in a most romantic way and they live happily ever after. Until next week. The idea of marriage being about sacrificial, unselfish love is a foreign concept to most people. I have taught teens about love, marriage and sex and my favorite way to define a true love is this: Real love, the kind of love God meant for a man and a woman, is a sacrificial love. It is a love that mirrors His love for us. It is a love that cannot be earned and is not deserved, but is freely given. Real love is NOT a warm, fuzzy (or raging inferno) feeling. Real love is making a deliberate decision to commit to the well-being of another person. It's a decision to treat another person in a particular way and to live out that decision--regardless of what our feelings are at a given moment. Using the Biblical definition of love found in I Corinthians 13, it is possible to love someone when you don't like them and that's good because over the years of a marriage there are bound to be lots of times when one spouse is not in-like with the other.
The truth about marriage needs to get out there to the masses...BEFORE THEY GET MARRIED! I have no answers as to how to bring that about, but I do believe it needs to come from the church.
posted by Stacy at 11:01 AM
Tuesday, April 20, 2004
Yeah, it's my life, but somebody's got to do it.
Pretty chilly this morning when I headed out to work, but it's warmed up quick enough. This is our fifth nice day in a row! Rain is on the way tonight along with a bit of a cool down, but the high temps are supposed to stay in the 60's. I can live with that. As long as we're not talking snow.....
We got lots of work done outside the last few days. Tim, Matt and I got six sections of post and rail fence put up. That was hot, dirty and hard work. Lots of rock in our soil and the post holes had to be two feet deep. We planted the four climbing roses along it and planted Hosta bulbs around the bases of the trees that sit right behind the fence. It looks very sharp.....and will look even nicer once all the plants get growning. The only thing is, as I was backing out of the driveway this morning it hit me that we need one section of fence on the other side of the driveway to make it look right. I don't know why we didn't think of that. A friend from work and I drove up the ridge this morning to a little nursery Tim and I have been using for years. We didn't buy anything but we both saw a couple of things we'd like to get. Time to drag the hubbies up there!
We also cleaned out the chicken coop on Sunday, spread new bedding and moved the chicks into it. They are learning to fly and I didn't want them escaping their pen and flying all over the shed. They are tickled with their new home and we all enjoy watching them. They are at the point that their individual personalities are coming out....and yes, chickens have personalities, some stronger than others. My favorite is a bit of a bully but she's very daring and brave and seems to like me right back. She is one that will probably make the cut as part of the small flock of layers I want to keep. The rest are destined to be butchered, probably in July.
Lots of running tonight. Matt has a home volleyball match tonight against the local rival and Megan has soccer practice at the same time. Tim is supposed to be here for Matt's match, but it's me that will get to do the running back and forth. Varsity volleyball plays best out of five matches to decide a winner so it can be as short as three matches or take all five. I'm hoping for short tonight. Last week we didn't get home until 10:00.
Only 30 more days of school after today.
Got to share this from Mikey's Funnies. It's funny, but waaaaaay too true in our household. This has been the story of my life since Matt started school back in 1992 and Megan has continued the tradition.
DAILY HOMEWORK POLICY
Students should not spend more than 90 minutes per night: This time should be budgeted in the following manner:
- 15 minutes looking for assignment
- 11 minutes calling a friend for the assignment
- 23 minutes explaining why the teacher is mean and just does not like children
- 8 minutes in the bathroom
- 10 minutes getting a snack
- 7 minutes checking the "TV Guide"
- 6 minutes telling parents that the teacher never explained the assignment
- 10 minutes sitting at the kitchen table waiting for Mom or Dad to do the assignment
LONG TERM HOMEWORK POLICY
-These assignments are given the night before they are due. This explains the name "long term."
- It is a long term commitment to the time it takes to finish it, which usually begins at 9:30 p.m. and ends at 11:50 p.m....or later.
- It is important that the whole family is involved in the project.
- It is imperative that at least one family member races to Wal-mart/Kmart for posterboard, and that at least one family member ends up in tears (does not have to be the student).
- One parent needs to stay up and complete the project. The other parent needs to call the school and leave a message that the student is out sick.
- It is not necessary to have the student's name on the assignment.
posted by Stacy at 12:20 PM
Monday, April 19, 2004
You can design your own superhero here. Mine was totally awesome. With any luck I'll be able to share things like this once we get the new computer.
Thanks to Curt.
posted by Stacy at 11:03 AM
Saturday, April 17, 2004
Thanks, everyone that hoped I'd feel better yesterday. I was fine by the time I got home from work in the afternoon and taco night was a huge success. Still sneezing and snuffing a bit today, but it's not too bad. Now that I know allergy season is upon us I can take drugs accordingly.
Matt is off to an all-day volleyball tournament and Tim is working half a day. I'm doing such fun and exciting things......scrubbing toilets and washing heaps and heaps of, I truly believe, still clean laundry that the kids have piled up for me. Pretty soon Megan and I have to run to Wal-mart in search of gifts for a birthday party she's going to tonight and a baby shower we're both going to tomorrow. Oh yeah, and cleaning supplies. Can't forget those. Our Wal-mart has a fairly nice selection of Christian books. I wonder if they have the Ragamuffin Gospel or A Rabbi's Heart? A friend told me I should read them because of what we've gone through. Once Tim gets home we are going to Lowe's to buy 6 sections of post and rail fence and then we'll have to install it. I bought several climbing roses and they need something to climb on. I can't wait till the roses grow and bloom. I got red, white and blue. It should be an unusual display.
Well, off to shop!
posted by Stacy at 10:34 AM
Friday, April 16, 2004
It's a beautiful sunny morning here and the temperature is expected to soar into the mid-70's so why am I sitting here in a funk that not even blasting Sweet's Ballroom Blitz can cure? I think it's because at 7:25am, in the middle of my high school run, the allergy season began for me. I sneezed and snuffed my way through the rest of the run and the elementary run. Now my head feels like an over-inflated balloon and I swear there is a tiny little person in my head stabbing me between the eyes with an ice pick and between stabs he's trying to push my eyeballs out of my skull.
If I can shake this, I'll be looking forward an evening with everyone at home for a change. I bought into the advertising on ABC about having taco night and watching the TGIF shows. That's exactly what we're doing. We'll also be putting together the entertainment center we bought at Walmart last night. It was only $39! Thought it was a mistake, but it was the only one and the price was right. We moved the TV, surround sound, DVD and VCR out of the built in cabinet to the other end of the livingroom and stacked it all on a chest of drawers. Matt said it wasn't a good set up because the surround sound isn't getting enough ventilation. Oops. Don't want to burn it up so we've been searching for the right cabinet. This one has a hole just big enough for our TV and each of the machines will have it's own shelf......air circulation aplenty! Depending on how I feel, I may work in the yard a bit, too. If not, it will wait till tomorrow. Half of the plants I ordered have arrived and have to be planted. I think only the strawberries haven't come yet.
Well, it's back to the war zone. I have to ride along on someone's kindergarden route in case they don't make it back from a doctor's appointment Monday.
Catch ya later.
posted by Stacy at 10:32 AM
Thursday, April 15, 2004
Oh, the thinks that you think!
It's time to take another look at the searches that bring people to my little ol' blog. Why? Because there have been a couple of interesting ones. Okay, the truth is I've got time on my hands and I'm bored.
Lavern & Shirley t-shirts, H.R. Puffinstuff t-shirts: That's the third such search I've noticed for t-shirts bearing images of the TVLand crowd. Wonder if I can become an affiliate and make some extra money here?
writing goodbye email to coworkers when i am resigning from the company: Definitely the new title holder in the longest, most specific search catagory.
volleyball is stupid: I'm guessing this person is not a fan.
crucifiction: Kinda cool that I popped up in a search for that.
80's Kiss fans surely went away disappointed and I don't think I've ever mentioned Christopher Lloyd, but you never know.
Maybe the person looking for a pink cd cassette player could try looking in Walmart stores in Idaho.
The search for a stupid morning thought brought one person here. All I can say is look around. I'm sure stupid thoughts abound. I can't guarantee they took place in the morning, though.
And lastly, while I try not to be judgemental of folks, I admit this one screwed my face up into a pretty good imitation of Dana Carvey's Church Lady character. To the two of you who found my blog by searching for tushy licking.......do you really think you should be looking for such things?
posted by Stacy at 9:52 AM
Monday, April 12, 2004
I forgot to mention something that happened Saturday evening. I got a call from a friend from our old church. She is the one Tim and I had some issues with when we left but that I, at least, have made peace with. She is also Megan's pediatrician.
She called to ask about Megan and how she is doing......well, that's how it started. I think she called more because she is unhappy at the church. We ended up talking for a long time. At first she said she refuses to believe we are gone for good, that she tells herself we are just on an extended leave and that we will be back. But the more we talked the more she opened up about her frustration and discouragement with the church and how nothing seems to be changing. She said the attitudes of the people are just so ingrained that it seems the only way the church will change is if the older ones leave. Elections are coming up and she said that where we never used to be able to fill the ballot, virtually everyone wants to hold office this year. The problem is the attitude behind it. They don't want to serve because they prayed about it and it's God's will. She said it's painfully obvious that most everyone sees it as a personal forum to get their own voice heard (nothing new there) and that ugly attitudes are rearing their heads. By the time we finished talking she'd asked me to invite them to come along with us some Sunday when we'd found a church we really like. I got the feeling she and her husband may be beginning to toy with the idea of leaving, too. Please pray for them with me. Waivering on that line has got to be the worst place I've ever been.
posted by Stacy at 8:56 AM
Yea! It's Monday morning and I'm at home. Some of the schools went back today to make up another snow day, but not Derry. We just tack 'em on in June......which I will probably grumble about in June, but for now I like it. Nothing planned. Hubby is at work, baby boy is sleeping (and probably will be until noon) and darling daughter spent the night at an aunt's and won't be home until this afternoon. Most likely you will be able to find me doing laundry, continuing with the spring cleaning or reading something (time to choose a new book to start on).
So, we had a good Easter. I hope you did, too. We got the kids up to admire their baskets then got ready and headed off to church. Tim decided we'd go to the one his sister attends (CMA) since we'll be going there for the next eight weeks for the 40 Days of Purpose. It's a nice church. It's a big church...at least it's much bigger than we are used to with about 600 attending their two services yesterday. It's getting bigger. They gave all of yesterday's offering to their building fund. The building they are in is only about 6 years old, very well thought out and (to me) quite large, but they are going to add another wing and build a seperate building for youth and fellowship. So, what did we think of it?
Megan-"I love this church." Darling daughter is easily impressed by the material things in life and at this point I'm pretty sure all she is judging on is what she saw.
Matt-No gushing pronouncements of love, but he filled out his own visitor's card and checked ministries he'd be interested in. The fact that their new minister of music begins Tuesday is of interest. The emphasis on missions caught his attention, too.
Tim-"That is the best I've felt in church in a long time." He liked the style of worship....organized and not free-flowing like at the other church we visited....the pastor, the emphasis on missions, what he heard about the youth program, the level of involvement by the people and well, pretty much everything. I don't think he mentioned anything he didn't like.
Me-I'm a little more reserved in my enthusiasm. The service was nice, too nice, in my humble opinion. It was a show. I know that being entertained is what a lot of people want out of a service, but I'm not one of them. It tends to turn me off. On the other hand, show or not, the Spirit was present and that's all that matters. I liked how much inolvement there was of others in the service. The pastor welcomed everyone, led the prayer and gave the sermon, other than that it was a parade of people up front.....choir director, youth pastor, deacons, youth. The list of ministry opportunities is impressive. If we end up staying, I can see myself getting involved with the youth program and wonder of wonders, Tim said he could see himself working along side me because of the things he heard them say they do and because we'd just be leaders not "in charge." The pastor is very nice, the sermon was solid and he gave an invitation. I could do with a bit more fire in him (he never broke out of an even tone of voice or showed physical enthusiasm) but that is a small issue. He remembered our names with all those people there yesterday. That impressed me a lot. My biggest concern is about the people and relationships. I've expressed before that something I really need to have in a chuch is the relationships with other believers. I'm not expecting to find a new best friend, but I do need a strong sense of community. The lack of that is what made me finally able to break with my old church. So, what concerned me a little yesterday was that the people Tim's sister introduced us to said lukewarm hello's and no one else greeted us at all.
Putting all of our views together, where do we stand? We've got nearly two months to experience this church and come to a final decision. We feel God placed the opportunity in our paths with the invitation to join the 40 Days of Purpose group coming, as it did, from the sister we have very little to do with. On the whole community thing? I'm willing to give it time. This is a big church and it would be easy to get lost in the crowd. Small groups is where we're going to have to meet people. We'll start the 40 Days group in two weeks. At some point we will need to step into Sunday school classes and I saw that there is a First Place weight loss group starting up. I think I may join that. We will be a little bit limited by time and distance in what we can participate in, but that is probably a good thing. It will help us maintain a healthy balance and not make the church the center of our lives to the exclusion of all else.
posted by Stacy at 7:55 AM
Saturday, April 10, 2004
sounds of silence
Sorry for the silence the past few days. It's been a very busy week that left little time for blogging......and yet there didn't seem to be anything happening that I felt was worthy of mentioning. I'm enjoying the long weekend and the chance to get caught up on things around the house. Tomorrow will find us in church (I know not where) and then with Tim's family. My mom and John have decided to spend the day alone at their other house up on the ridge since they haven't stayed there in months. I hope they are happy. I asked them if they wanted to have dinner here and they weren't very enthusiastic so it was actually kind of a relief to hear their final decision.
There was one thing I've been pondering this week. I've had three experiences with high school sports in the last week and a half. The first was driving the varsity and jv volleyball teams to a match. The second was an all day volleyball tournament hosted by our school. The third was driving the varsity baseball team to a game. There was a big difference between the two sports. Both when I drove them and when I merely observed them at the tournament, I was appalled by the language the volleyball players used. The f-word flowed like water from some of them. Girls who rode along to keep stats or as athletic trainers were treated to terribly crude remarks. The boys walked on the bus seats, beat on the windows and were just obnoxious in general. The coach never said a word to them. At the tournament we witnessed the coach losing his temper and screaming profanity at the ref.....and it apparently extended on to the team in the lockerroom once the match was over. The baseball team, on the other hand, was a joy to take. The boys were polite, respectful and considerate. The coach allowed no swearing or horsing around on the bus. The girls that were along had to sit in the front away from the players and when one girl grumped about it he told her if she didn't like it, she could sit with him next time. When one of the players sat with a girl for a second he was right on him, telling him to move. When the boys teased one of the girls because she is failing gym (and therefore won't be eligible to keep stats) he shut them down right away. When the coach got upset about a call made in the game he did yell and get in the umpire's face but he never swore and never called him anything but sir and as soon as it was clear the ump wouldn't budge on his call the coach backed off and moved on. He didn't take it out on the team. So why am I mentioning all this and thinking about it so much this week? Because one of the coaches is a Christian and it has me thinking about how we really do need to guard our tongues and actions because who we are in real life is probably our strongest witness to those around us. If we aren't behaving the way we should, how can we tell anyone else about how changed they will be by knowing Jesus and expect them to believe it? Also, sometimes what we don't do says who we really are louder than what we do. Which coach is the Christian? Unfortunately, it's the volleyball coach and everybody knows that about him. He's very bold about it. In fact, while he was standing there spewing profanity he was wearing a Jesus t-shirt.
Well, I'm off to find something to feed Megan and her girlfriend for breakfast then it's back to cleaning.
HAVE A VERY HAPPY AND BLESSED EASTER....AND REJOICE IN THE JOY OF OUR RISEN LORD!
posted by Stacy at 8:08 AM
Tuesday, April 06, 2004
Remember I said I wasn't expecting anything great out of the final installment of the Left Behind series, Glorious Appearing? I was wrong. Not about it's literary strength....it isn't all that great.....but about what I would get from it. Last night I was reading about Jesus's arrival in Jerusalem and about how everyone felt He was speaking personally to them even though He was addressing the multitudes. I don't know how to explain it, but all of a sudden it was like Jesus was speaking to me personally, too. He talked to me of things in my life and convicted me of the need to make some changes. Even as I was being chastised I was overwhelmed by His love and I just sat there with tears streaming down my face. It was incredible.
It seems like God is doing a lot of work in/on me lately. That's good. Because of the way things were at our church, I'd really let myself go spiritually. It's like I'm coming alive again and it feels so good. Nearly everyday holds something. Like today. We received a call from Tim's brother-in-law (not exactly a normal occurrence). It seems their church has just kicked off The Purpose Driven Life. They have agreed to host one of the small groups in their home and thought they would invite us. Tim and I have already been through it, but to my surprise Tim said he'd like to do it again. Neither of us felt we got as much out of it as we could have...partly because of our mental state at the time and partly because our church really dropped the ball and didn't do its part. Anyway, it doesn't start meeting for a couple of weeks but that is where you will find us on Friday nights throughout the rest of the Spring and into Summer. Sunday mornings you may even find us in their church. Tim says he would like to hear the sermons that go along with it. Fine with me. I like their church. A lot. We'd actually talked about it, but didn't seriously consider it because of how far away it is. Involvement beyond Sunday mornings would be tough. Well, we'll see what comes of it all. It's just cool how God is waking us up spiritually.
posted by Stacy at 8:30 PM
Monday, April 05, 2004
We ended up not going to church yesterday. Tim still says he will give the one we visited last week another try or two, but he didn't want to go there yesterday and I wasn't too excited about any of the others. We debated back and forth and just couldn't seem to decided, so ended up staying home.
Megan went to see her cousins in their school musical Saturday night and spent the night. We had to drive up (an hour and a half) and get her yesterday afternoon. We only stayed to visit a short time as it was really nasty weather around here.....cold, windy and snowy.
posted by Stacy at 11:47 AM
Ewwww.....the cicadas are coming!
Apparently some cicadas are on a 17-yr cycle and this is the year for the Eastern seaboard. We can expect to be inundated by Brood X from some time in May until the last bug disappears near the end of June. Read here to learn more.
posted by Stacy at 11:41 AM
Thursday, April 01, 2004
Last week Kiwi Christian led us on a tour of the 80's. This week she's stepping back yet another decade.
Five Favourite Fashion Accessories from the 70s:
2. Platform shoes
3. Granny skirts
4. Knee socks/toe socks
5. Mood rings
Five Favourite movies from the 70s:
1. Star Wars
3. Caddy Shack
4. Blues Brothers
5. Anything with Gene Wilder/Richard Pryor
Five Favourite tv shows from the 70s:
2. Happy Days
3. Lavern and Shirley
4. The Brady Bunch
5. Any Sid and Marty Croft Saturday morning offering (think H.R. Puffinstuff, Lidsville, Sigmund and the Sea Monsters, etc)
Five favourite Songs from the 70s:
1. Piano Man - Billy Joel
2. Hotel California - Eagles
3. Ballroom Blitz - Sweet
4. Fly Like an Eagle - Steve Miller
5. Sweet home alabama - Lynyrd Skynyrd
Five favourite kids games from the 70s:
1. Hungry, Hungry Hippos
3. 10-4 Good Buddy
4. Which Witch?
5. Mystery Date
posted by Stacy at 11:14 PM
It's raining, it's pouring...
and I'm driving the volleyball team to a match after school. It's at one of the closer school districts so I shouldn't be too late getting home.
posted by Stacy at 11:36 AM
Is this the little boy?
I was sitting there looking at Matt last night and it occurred to me that something's been going on with him for a few months now. I believe it's called growing up. Not just physically, though he is doing that and can stop any time now since he's officially the most vertically unchallenged person in the house, but also in more important ways. It's like all of a sudden he's gotten serious about life. His grades are better and he actually stays to get help when he needs it. He is really working hard at volleyball and football (dedication was never one of his strong points). He's discovered not only a love of computer programming, but also a gift for it. His teacher yesterday told him how impressed he was because Matt has taught himself to do things the teacher doesn't know how to do. While he isn't sure what he wants to do with it, he has decided to study programming in college. He has even thought far enough ahead to be pretty sure he's going to live at home and attend community college to get an associate degree then transfer.....this is major seriousness for my boy. And finally, last night we went to watch him get inducted into the World Language Honor Society. Yep, he's definitely growing up.