Saturday, February 27, 2010


As i've said before- I really have no idea who reads my blogs.  I don't mind.  I just want to caution those that are going to be reading the post I've recently updated.

These post were in my 'drafts' for a while.  I don't know why I felt the need to put them out there today.  But they're there.

That being said- I just want to put out a caution that there are some personal things in these post.  I use my blog as a journal- as I've said... so there's more insight to my personal thoughts and struggles than one would normally have.

Just know- on the outside- I'm fine.  Most of us have inward struggles... and I'm digging deep into my inside in an effort to figure out how to fix my issues.

Pray for me if you feel led.  But please don't pity me. God is using every struggle I've encountered to make me better- stronger- more empathetic- and more real.

When I was 12 years old I found a quote that I've never forgotten.  I've carried it with me.  It has encouraged me and given me a realization that God has a purpose in all things.  He makes all things for HIS Good... if we let Him.   I am-Who I Am- because of what I've experienced in my life.  There isn't a single thing I'd change- regardless of how hard or how painful.

"Every struggle weaves inside, and leaves a mark... becoming part of who we are."

Grace for People Like Me?

 For people like me- is there really grace?  True grace?

God knows me- every single part of me.  My heart, my thoughts, my hopes, my struggles.... He knows every thing!! (more than I even know about myself)

He sees me when I'm cold.  And unloving.  And distant from the people that I actually truly do whole heartedly care about.  So?  Why am I distant- and cold- and unloving?  I don't know.  I have no idea!!!!
Is there Grace for people like me?  Do I get grace when I'm caught up in my struggle with my inability to truly love ''with my whole heart''.  I don't even think I have a whole heart to love with.  It's been in pieces for more years than I can count back.

It broke in two when my mom and dad divorced.  She had part of it.  He had part of it.  I didn't know it then, but that must have been the first time my heart broke.

And then a part of it broke again when I saw my dad act like a total fool in his frustration and hit my mom.  One and only time I'd ever seen him do it.  It hurts to think about it, still.  I was really confused.

Something shattered inside again when we had to go to school with people we didn't know- time and time again- moving and moving and never having any sort of consistency in our life.  I got "made fun" of for being poor, for living in a trailer park, for wearing clothes that were ugly....  I still remember the humilitation.

My heart started becoming numb (inside it's brokenness)  when my mom made us go to a trashy dump to get 'baby sat' after school; all the while, our baby sister stayed at a nice, clean place with an actual care giver.

Our "caregiver" sat on her couch, all 400 pounds of her, and we had to listen to constant yelling and feel painful tension while her entire family worked toward settling their own issues.   This same babysitter- the one that was 'ok' for my mom's older kids, but not 'ok' for her baby- this baby sitter also allowed a 12 year old boy to take advantage of  a 9 year old innocent girl.  And that girls brother knew about it.  And it happened to her sister, too.  And nobody rescued them- nobody prevented it- nobody made sure that THOSE kids were taken care of.   - I think that must have been when the numbness started.....

More pieces of my heart crumbled and fell and broke away through out the remainder of my life.  A lot to do with my mom's inability to love me.  Her heart got ripped out of her when she was a little girl- I don't think she even got the luxury of a slow-fading heart....  my mom had no idea how to show her children love.  She still doesn't.  I'm no longer a child- of course- but there is something secure in feeling a mother's love (or so I've heard).

My mom didn't teach me what I needed to know to become a fruitful adult-woman-mother-wife.  I got nothing to go by.   I never had a chance- really.... to find a way to truly love (broken-heart and all).

Is there Grace for people like me?   Can I learn how to 1 Corinthians love with my cold-broken heart?

God!.  I want to so badly.

I want to be gentle, and affectionate, and sincere, and affirming.
 I want to have sweet words and gentle touches, and true quality time with my children.
 I want to live my life (not for me) but for the sake of my daughters.
  I want that.... but I don't do it.  I don't know how to love with my broken heart.  I just don't.

IS there Grace for me?  What can I do to be relieved of this burden?


During the time I've been working toward a slimmer frame- thus having to use self control- I've realized how gentle my God is;  when we are allowed to get a little perspective.

Suddenly- I'm aware.  More aware.  I've always sort of been aware- discerning for lack of a better word.  Aware of how much I needed to change (and how much other people needed to change....)  Aware that there were specific things I needed to do in order to find myself......changed.

But- I've not had the understanding of how exactly I needed to go about changing.  I found myself (often) giving myself a little 'talking to'.

 "Ok, Amber.  You have got to read your Word.  You have to wake up early- and spend that quality time with The Lord.  You have to be still.  Be silent.  You have to listen.  You have to be self-controlled.  You have to learn how to love- to truly, selflessly, deeply love."

Why do I love God?  Because He loves me.  Easy.

More importantly.... HOW do I love Him???    I don't know exactly how to love 'The Lover of my Soul'.

I keep hearing that song What Do I Know of Holy? (Addison Road).  I feel like it was my heart that wrote that song.  What do I know of Holy?  I ask myself- I plead- GOD, please teach me how to love.

And I found a chuckle come out as soon as I  typed that.  In asking Him to teach me love, I assume He's just going to zap me into knowing love .

I have love all around me.  I see it.  I see my daughters lovingly adore me, though that adoration is completely undeserved  I am loved.
I know that Jesus Christ held out His arms, bleeding tears and a crown of thorns, and He died for me.  He suffered.  He pained.  He died.  For me.  I am loved.
My husband holds me, he comforts me, he stands by me- even when he'd rather not.  I am loved.

I know how to be loved.  I just don't know how to love.  I don't know how to forgive, though I'm forgiven.

I have the perspective.  I understand that I am lacking the ability to truly and completely love.  My Abba-Father sent Jesus to show us love.  HE is love.  I want to be a copy-cat.  I want to love like Jesus.  I wish I already did!

But I don't.... not even a little bit.... because TRUE love is unconditional.  I dismiss it too quickly.  I never doubt the love my Savior has for me.... but I do doubt the love I have for Him.  How could I possibly love Him if I don't live my life truly for Him. 

Love is sacrifice- and I don't give it.  Love is patience- and I don't have it.....Love is kind, and gentle and faithful..... all those things that 1 Corinthians defines "love" as... they aren't me, they aren't what I do..... no matter how much I desire to LOVE the way that Jesus loves.... I just don't.

There are times I am convinced that I just need to give up.  I've been at this "Christian" thing for over 10 years.. and I still don't have it right.  I've been married for 10 years... and I most DEFINITELY do not have it right.  And I've been a mommy for over 6 years.... and- you guessed it- I really don't have it right!  I keep messing up.  Daily.

What does a person do when they have the perspective on how to correct their issues but they lack the forward motion to carry out the actions required of them?

Suck it up.  Keep going forward.  Keep trying.  Persevere.

Friday, February 26, 2010

If I Didn't Already Know

If I didn't already know Jesus,
 truly know Him......
It would be hard for me to understand that He is the "Real Deal".

If I had to depend on a 'church' to teach me
"Who that Guy  is that died for me.... because He loved me......" in this season of Christianity.....
I'd scoff and sneer and call those people crazy for believing such nonsense.

If I didn't already know that people- you and me- were total idiots
 and can't be depended on to walk a narrow enough path to truly represent Jesus....
 I would never have bothered trying to stumble back to the narrow
after wandering so far off into the wide (over and over and over again).

Churches today- in this day and time- seem to be complete JOKES.
  "Whoo hoo we're gonna clap our hands and stomp our feet, and slap a smile on our fake-little-faces."  And all the while- the truth of the matter is- from my experience as a decade-long church goer (and Jesus-Lover) NOBODY gives a FLIP about ANYBODY.    And you and I are both in that category- whether we wanna admit it or NOT.

I don't make sacrifices in an effort to reach out to the hurting-
'cause I'm hurting- and I gotta try to figure out my own garbage
before I can help my neighbor take out his.
(That's where Satan gets us, though.  He keeps us so wrapped up in our own chaos, that we are too ashamed to reach out, be open, and get real with each other.)

Most of the time- I don't even know if somebody IS hurting-
because people are so plastic.
It's like church-goers have been required to inject botox into their life;
It all looks smooth and nice, and pretty.... but underneath
 it's disgusting, diseased and deadly!
God forbid anyone know it, too.
Oh no!!  Church-folk can't have people actually KNOWING they got issues of the botulism-kind.

Maybe I'm jaded.  Maybe I have simply had enough of arrogant men (and women) posting themselves onto self-righteous pedastools, wagging their crooked fingers at the world- knowing their just as bad (or worse) as the lifestyle they are judging.

These 'pastor's and 'church-folk', who lack humility, convincing themselves that they are righteous....
 Boo on them!  Boo on all of us "Christians".
 I'd hate to see Jesus' face in this moment.  I'd die of shame.  I would want to hide under a rock if He called me to heaven in this moment.  I'm not righteous.  I'm not holy.  I'm nothing.  He loves me anyway, though?  Oddly- surprisingly- I know for sure that He does!

If I didn't already know it..... It would be really hard to convince me that Jesus is awesome.
And HE knew we weren't gonna be {awesome}.
And THAT is why He gave His life for us.  {Because we're NOT awesome)

And I'm sick and STINKIN tired of people acting like they are AWESOME.
 F.Y.I.  "You're NOT!"
And neither is your 'church'  or your 'pastor' or your 'Christian-friends'.

And neither am I.
Especially not me.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Take Over Me


I hear these amazing songs.

I envision the artist sitting down- instrument tuned- waiting on YOU speak to their heart.   And when You do- they play the melody and they vocalize their hearts cry.

That's what I envision- YOU doing... through me.
Can I cry a little bit again?  Can I plead a little more?  Can I get on my knees and beg?
I want to SING!!  I want to sing, Lord.  I want to sing the songs You have given me.

I want to write the Words that YOU are speaking to my heart;  and I do.  Thank You for Your Word.
I want to hear the guitar and feel the power when the bridge leads into the chorus,  and I want to feel the passion in the song You write through me;   and I do.
But I can't sing it harmoniously.  I can't sing it melodically.  I can't sing it.
I can't sing it and make it beautiful.  But I want to.  I want to, Lord.

 I feel like I'm a useless vessel... ..........but I know
... nothing You make is useless.  Nothing You do is in vain.
There are no imperfections created by Your hands, are there?  No.   I know.  I know that.

I can't sing the tune to the songs You gave me, Lord.....  I can't vocally express the passion that runs so fervently through me.  But I can write them.  And I can read them.  And in my heart- I can sing them for You; to You.

Thank You.

My fingers don't interact with my brain on a guitar to strum the melody......
I see myself in front of a piano.  Or a keyboard?  Anything with 88 keys.

I have a notebook full of scraggly writing.

I'm writing the words that You speak...I'm writing the wisdom that you teach.
 I'm writing my thoughts, and  my fears,  and they fill pages stained with humble tears.

Because I can't sing.  I can't sing the song You wrote through me.  I can't sing it and make it beautiful.
 But You can.
And You do.
And You will.

Thank You, God.
Thank You,  Lord.

Monday, February 22, 2010

In my life....

To my Daddy God:

Thank You Father for this radio station that I'm listening to right now.  The Jesus Loving songs that I get to FEEL when I make time to sit in Your presence.  Thank You for the dj that chooses, so carefully, so prayerfully, the songs that move through the air waves.  And I know he does.  I know he prays.  And You- the God of the Universe- Abba Father, Yeshua...... You led me to a rabbi.  A teacher not afraid to teach the Truth.  Your Truth.  I'm overwhelmed.

You gave me a friend... You gave me a "Jonathon"  friend- and I don't deserve it.    Did Jonathon love David despite all of David's mess ups???  I'm humbled.  My friend- who loves me- though I've confessed to her how awful I really am.  A friend that will rebuke me when I need it.  A friend that will lend me a ladder of encouragement when I've put myself in a pit of discouragement.  A faithful friend.  Thank You.

You gave me a strong-tower.  You gave me a sister-friend.  My sister.  She knows me well.  She knows me completely.  All of my short-comings (and goings)......she's witnessed most.   And somehow- she is still willing to look up to me?  To seek my advice?  To trust me?  I don't understand it.  Thank you for my sister.  We are each other's strong-tower.

You gave me a husband.  In him, I have a friend, a strong tower, and a teacher.    I'm in awe of how well You know me, God.  You knew I'd need Joshua.  Joshua.  (God is My Salvation).  You knew I would need him to challenge me.  To forgive me.  To stand beside me.  To rejoice with me.  You knew I would need him to hurt me- deeply, painfully, and regrettably- so that I could attain an empathetic heart.  You knew I'd need him to love me- deeply, painfully, and with out ANY regret so I could some how, remotely comprehend how vast Your love is!   He is one of those scars You've given me, Lord.  Your grip has been so tight (on our marriage), and it's hurt- but our scars are beautiful.  Beautiful scars.  Thank You, God.

A rabbi.

A friend.

A strong-tower.

A husband.

Thank You for letting me get a closer look at Who Jesus is- through the people You have put in my life.

Listen To Your Lady

I really enjoyed this song.... I'm thinking of playing it on repeat while Joshua sleeps.

Friday, February 19, 2010


Why am I weeping?  Why am I both physically and mentally worn out?  And for goodness sake- what IS IT I have to cry about, anyway?!!?

Poor (dumb) psychologist would convince me that I'm "depressed". (Eh. Wrong!)
Poor (dumb) me assumed it was because I was pregnant. (Negative. Phew!).


I just keep weeping.  It's been a while now- maybe a week or two.  Gets worse every day.  And oddly- here's where it gets so crazy-strange:  I have a "new joy" right smack dab in the middle of all this weeping.

I know.  I know.  I'm getting all kinds of psychological analysis right now from whomever is reading this (including MYSELF).

It's true.  I have a new joy.  I'm crying.  I'm an annoying blubbering emotionally ridiculous basket case.  But I have new joy.

I see my girls differently.  I have a NEW kind of love for them.  I have a newer desire to protect them, and defend them, and stand up on a harsher-type of soil JUST to assure myself that I am doing everything I can  to get them on a better path in life than I had.  Sand paper soil.  It really hurts.  A lot.  Not easy.  I'm going against the grain at every turn.

Boo.  Hooo.  HOOO!  Good, Lord what is going on with all this weeping?

Tree's weep.  Right?  Pine trees.  Maple trees.  Oh! And.....  Willows weep.  Yes they do.

Why?  What is the physiological reasoning behind a tree weeping?!?!
I can't find the answer on Google.  Do they make Encyclopedia's anymore?   Wait!  Wait a minute!  I just remembered we have a book about trees.  (Somewhere........?)   Benefit of home schooling;  Lots of books.  Down side home schooling super young scholars? Nothing has a place, there is a place for nothing!

 I'll come back to this post once I get my hands on that "tree book".

Now....sniffle-sniffle....where did I put that box of Kleenex?

*** This little poem just randomly FLEW into my head. Whatever.  I thought I'd type it out and play around with it another day***  (Don't judge my juvenile ditty.)

There must be a reason.  
I'll find it soon.  
Today, however....
I'm simply confused.

I have no answers.  
Yet no important question to raise.  
It seems I am  just fine.......
On most days.

A new joy attained
In the midst of my weeping
Is it possible to have both.....?
The Truth I'll be seeking

The truth; or
The Truth?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hypocritical Parents

I'm a hypocrite.   I realized it the other day- all of a sudden- when my 2 year old (who is learning to NOT poo-poo in her diaper) walked into the bathroom.  

I have no privacy.  What bathroom door??  I think my kids walk through them.   Anyway.  My 2 year old walks in- just as I am finishing up-uh?- my bathroom 'stuff':
 "You usin' the pot-tee?"  
"Yes. Mommy's using the potty"
And she walks over to stand in front of me- and looks down at my recently placed "special" napkin.
She looks back up at me.  She's confused.  She looks back down at my 'napkin' and says "Not pee pee in your bi-per, Mommy.  In the pot-tee!!"     And she leaves the bathroom.  

I'm a hypocrite in her little eyes.

And I tell my middle child:
" Use nice words.  Don't talk mean to your sister.  Stop screaming.  Stop yelling.  It's not nice.".

5 minutes later.... I've lost my patience.  I have had it!  You might find me hollering from the bottom of the stairs:   "ZOE!!!  What. DID! I TELL YOOOOOOO!??!?!?!??!?!   USE.    NICE.  WORDS!!!!"

Yup.  I'm a hypocrite.

And to my 6 year old I instruct:  "It's important to use our time wisely.  We shouldn't play around when there's work to do.  Let's focus on school."   She later finds me on Facebook being a total slacker while there is a pile of dishes in the sink; growing mold.

And.... I'm a hypocrite.


NO Desert Islands

Just to confirm.  Nope.  I won't need to high tail it (any time soon) to a near by deserted island.   My friend T.O.M. stopped by the other day- the DAY after I peed on a stick that digitally told me "Not Pregnant".


I just posted something about Growing Pains- and the fact that my children are growing up way too fast.  I really wasn't ready for another emotional journey of the pregnancy-kind.

Thanks, God.

(P.S.  My 6 year old was recently asked to 'please stop praying that mommy and daddy have another baby'.  She confirmed that she wouldn't be praying for that any more.)

Now?  She's praying for a new kitten.  (I can handle that.)

Growing Pains

"The pain associated with the fact that your kids are growing up too fast." a.k.a.

In my past life (the one I had before I became a Mommy) I worked with senior adults.  I did it all!  From hands on care giving of the senior that had lost the ability to care for herself at all- to the directing of activities for the active senior that no longer wanted (or could) live alone.

My favorite part of Senior Adult Care had to have been when I was an Activities Director for an assisted living facility.  I basically 'hung out' with wise men and women in my day to day.  We went to lunch.  We played Bingo.  I gave them manicures and pedicures, and I sat on the side of their beds when the were too depressed to leave their room.

In my (short few) years in that particular career; I never.... NOT ONCE.. heard anyone say
"If I had to do it all over again I'd: have worked harder on my career; made more money; bought a bigger house; had more 'stuff'..."

To the contrary- it was opposite: "I shouldn't have spent so much time working; I never needed that big house...."

What I heard every time a regret was mentioned always had to do with family.    "I wish I'd have been closer to my family." or "I wish I had spent more time with my kids."

Have you ever noticed how a young child can usually turn the face of a sour old grump into a soft, sweet smile?  Isn't in interesting that most older/senior adults coddle and coo and swoon over babies, toddlers, and small children?

Why is it that Grandparents often say "The reward of being a parent is getting to be a grandparent?"

I have no degree to prove my theory- but I believe it has to do with the fact that most of 'us' parents are flying through life- just trying to make ends meet and keep the gray hair growth at a minimum during the years we are raising our kids.

I realized tonight- through a soggy face full of tears and a throat that couldn't quit hiccuping- that the first 2 years of (each) of my (3) children's life seem to have gone by with out my noticing it.  My oldest- I can remember the most.  It was the most emotionally charged!  We had no idea what we were doing.  Everything was scary, and amazing all in the same breath.

When my middle daughter came along 2 years and 2 months later- it was easy.  We considered infancy a piece of CAKE (compared to numero uno).  In looking back at photographs, I can honestly say that I don't have very much recollection of her time as a baby or a toddler.  It disappeared.  I only have pictures to prove that we went through the infant stage on up to the 2 year old stage with her.

And here I sit.  My 6 year old daughter  is snoozing in the bed below my 4 year old daughter while my 2 year old baby girl quietly snores in her crib.   My children are still young, aren't they?  They are.  So what am I going on about?!?!

I'll tell ya!!!

I missed a part of my children's life!  I missed out!!

Stress.  Financial struggles.  Marriage woes.  Life's "stuff" tricked me into robbing myself of the precious time I could have spent savoring my children's stepping stones.

I keep coming back to this.  Every year.  Every single year I find myself chastising (myself) for not slowing down.

Slow down, Amber.  SLOW DOWN!!!

Wisdom has already been past down to me.  "Savor your family.  Spend more time loving and getting to know your children."

Everything else the world has to offer is secondary.  An 'old' lady will confirm this truth!


Sunday, February 14, 2010


My daughter.  The eldest.  My first born.  She's a "little mommy".  She was born a nurturer.  Give her an animal to coo over, and she's happy.  Her very first pet was a Roley Poley.  She was 2.  We had to put it in a basket and watch it roll up and down.

She's collected bugs and worms.  She's kissed smelly dogs straight on the mouth and still cries over her 'kitty' who had to live elsewhere (crazy- cat couldn't keep his CLAWS off my sweet babies- My daughter was very willing to allow her younger sisters and herself get clawed if just for the chance to keep her 'Kitty'.)

And my daughter.  My first born (of 3)- the little mommy.  The one I adore.  The one I cry for because I think that 6 years has gone by way too fast, (and I want some of that time back... Booh Hooo!).  My  daughter has been fervently praying......for quite some time now...... for...... 'another baby'.  Specifically- she wants a brother.  Sometimes- she wants a brother and another sister.  Mostly.  She just wants another baby.

And tonight.  I'm a little nervous.  I always get slightly nervous toward the middle of the month (around the 20th) because I would really rather remain a "Mom of 3".  I'm getting 'those' symptoms, though.  The weird ones that typically cause a $10 deduction from our checking account.  And- for the past 2 + years- I've been thankful to fork over my ten dollars and read a 'negative'.  So.  SO. Thankful!!!

But my daughter- my sweet dark eyed baby girl- she's been praying!!!  And when she prays... GOD hears her heart.  He has (time and time and TIME again) made it clear.  He hears her.  He answers her.  And he USUALLY says "Yes!"

My daughter.  My Jesus loving little girl.  She has THE  true FAITH of a little child.  There's no question in her mind.  If she prays- she knows God will hear her.  And He will answer her.  And she is most content in knowing that He will provide her with her every need.

As a matter of fact- during a conversation about her desire to have a 'nother baby' I made it clear "Sweet girl- we're not having any more babies.  I'm sorry."  And my daughter.  My intelligent, beautiful child.  She casually passed her hand through the air, "Well.  I've been praying for it.  So.... you know...."  (As if to push the subject aside.  As if to say "It doesn't matter what you say, Mommy.)

And what I'm praying for.  What I hope more than anything for this time in our life- for this season.  I pray that God tells my first-born.  "I heard your prayer.  Thank you for your request.  But!  My answer is NO."

And now- I'm going to sleep.  And I'm going to rest. And in the morning- you know- I'm gonna pretend like my brain was NOT playing tricks on me- and that I was NOT experiencing any strange symptoms.  And I'm going to drink my highly caffienated coffee- and wait a few more days before I let myself totally freak out.

And dont' worry.  There will be no need to ask.  Once I realize I was just being sker'd, I'll post about how LAME I am for being paranoid about something that we have been SUPER DUPER extra carefult to prevent.

And if I happen to NOT post again- it's because I've found a deserted island to abandon myself on til Jesus comes back lest I totally lose my mind in ridiculous insanity.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Love Letter Number FOUR (I've missed a few)

 Why do I want to grow old with you?

 Marriage is hard.  We have struggled, haven't we?  Raising 3 young girls ain't exactly easy, is it?

 Going from our 2 year old's needs of diapers and redirection, to our 4 year olds' need for attention and bounce-proof-couches, onto our 6 year olds' need to know every-single-thing about ... ever-single-thing!  And somehow, we have to change course and focus on our marriage- on each other!  How do we do that?!?!

Love.  Humility. Sacrifice. Passion..... and a boat load of Humor.

I want to grow old with you because I need you!  You love me!
I need you to protect me when I am drowning in chaos- when you humble yourself and clean up the "Great Flood of 2010" after our 2 year old left the bathroom sink on- and the plug.. plugged in.
I need you to hold me when I'm inconsolable, sacrificing your need for more (than just having you hold me).
I need you to desire me- and you DO!
And I need you to make me laugh when I have found that there was NOTHING funny about my crazy day.  And you always make me laugh!

I envision the uncomfortable remarks we'll get from our daughters when they're teenagers.... you know... when (in our late 30's and very early 40's ) we're "Old" and they catch us sneaking a smooch in the kitchen (that's where "sex" starts, right?!?!).

I want to grow old with you because there is so much more to look forward to for The Rest of Our Life.  We're just getting started (after 10 years).

I want to grow old with you because you are THE MAN God intended me to grow old with.  You are my 'rescue-hero'.  I love you!

Tales of a Destructo-Baby

That's right.  I'm talkin' bout Leah.  It's daily..... and I mean DAILY......  that Leah gives us cause to stare.....mouth wide opened- heart skipping and pounding- and brains calculating the cost of what she has recently destroyed.

Oh?  Are you new to this list?  You may not know our story.  Let me just clarify.  Leah: Our 2 year old caboose.  Sweet baby girl.  The cutest little thing you'll ever see.

So.  For the most part of 'little-bit's' walking world, she was taking on only small-scale-demolition projects.  Emptying cereal boxes, or pulling toilet paper off the roll, pulling books off the shelf- (ripping said books in half causing her sisters to run in terror, their 'tattle-tales' wagging behind them).   Like I said- small scale.

And then- our adorable 3rd (and final) little girl started taking on heavier projects.  Taking her diaper off after a 'shoo-shoo' and.... well... let's just say that mess is bigger than any emptied out cereal box.  Flower pot on the window-sill?  Not anymore. That black soil that was in it?  Gone.  It's all over the floor, the clean laundry (folded neatly in the basket) and all over the bed.

Baby powder.  Not once.... not twice... NOT-EVEN-just-THREE-times.... time and time again, she sought out the baby powder container (picture short-stuff climbing atop a tall dresser, drawers pulled out as her stepping stool- just to reach the top and empty out that baby powder).  The greatest mess of all time.... again... and again.

We have to lock all bathroom doors from the inside out.  Imagine a small bathroom- with a small sink- and a smallish curly headed girl.  The sink's plug gets pushed down, the water is turned out.... and 2 rooms are flooded.  The bathroom is tile.  The 'play' room?  Not.  Wooden floors are buckled.  And our 2 year old looks at us as though to say "Hey. What? This is fun, right?  I'm so cute.. you couldn't possibly be mad at me."

And it's true.  All of the destructo-baby things out 2 year old is taking on are all- very simply- just the effects of being TWO.  She is the cutest.  I'm telling you.  Could your heart do anything other than melt when you hear these adorable words:

"Thank You, Mommy for my yummy gwapes."
"I sing song to Daddy, K?  It's our time... to siiiing to Daaaaaaad-eeeee"

and spontaniously, she breaks into the cutest song from Signing-Time "Whoa!!! Whoa!!!!  Look atmy hands.... look atmy hands thew dew-tee.  WHOA!!! WHOA!!!! Look at my hands- look atmy hands thew CWEAN!!!   Soap and water.  Soap and water... WHOA WHOA!!!!!!! Look at my hands. "

"That yours shoes, Mommy? I get them.  Oh.  They heah-bee.  They heh-bee!!!!"  (heavy)

"My 'carf...  my carf... I need my 'carf!" (scarf)

And should a burp let itself out of my mouth- she reminds me "Say scuse me, Mommy!!!!  Say SCUSE me!" (excuse me)

Or last night- when she was coughing and coughing and Coughing- waking up and crying, and eventually, her and I both took a spot on the recliner so she could be elevated enough to NOT cough (as much)....

When we settled in, and were laying still- she looked at me- eyes groggy,  though SMILING, she announced (in scraggly pitiful voice) "I Fah-Ted"  (farted)

Destructo-Baby.  Yes she is.  Heart-grabber.  Most definitely.  Can we get mad at her?
NOT-A-CHANCE!  She's just toooo cute!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Love Letter Number THREE


I've heard it said that our 'earthly father' can sometimes (unknowingly) give us the image of our 'Heavenly Father'.  We seem to relate who God is through what kind of daddy our father was.

I'm not sure if I've heard anyone say the same thing for a husband..... but it almost has to be true!!!  There have been so many times that, when thinking about you- and the love you have for me- I think "Wow!  God loves me like this, too?  Wait!!!  He loves me even MORE than this?!"  And I am in awe.

You know all of my secrets.  Every terrible thing about me.  You've seen me in my lowest place. Yet?  You love me, still.  (And you like me, which is even more incredible!)   So- it must mean that God loves me, still, despite my short-comings, despite my flaws, and my imperfections.  Sure.  I've known "God loves me".  But you bring it home- you make it realer the magnitude and the depth of HIS love.  Does that make sense?

And after having 3 kids over a short 4 year period- I'm not toting around a 'beauty queen' sash, yet you look at me as though I did.  You call me beautiful, and desirable after a long day of taking care of our home and our girls- food stained clothes, baggy eyes and all.....!   And if you call me beautiful- at my homeliest, how does God see me?  I can not imagine!

You reflect an image of God, in who you are, and in how you love.   Our daughters get to witness an INKLING of how deep their Heavenly Father's Love is through you.  They won't have to question His love, or yours- and neither do I.  You are adored.  I love you so much!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Love Letter Contest

Yesterday- (Feb 3) I entered my first love letter to Joshua on the Focus on the Family website.
They're having a 'contest', and each day- FOUR winners will be announced.  Each day- these 4 winners will win a prize;  A book or study of some sort about marriage.
I didn't win yesterday's.  And I can not tell a lie.  I'm bummed!  Maybe because I lost?
I also had high hopes of getting a notification that "I Won" on my birthday. Today

Really, though- the thing that bums me out the most is that the love letter I composed seems to be lost in cyber-space.  I don't know how to get a copy of it.  I didn't save it anywhere.  I typed it out directly through their site, hit "submit" and forgot to copy it to a retrievable file.

What I AM excited about is the fact that this contest will go on for another 9 days.  It ends at 3:59 PM (Mountain Time) on February 12, 2010.

What I'm even MORE excited about is that it represents ONE DAY for each year that we've been married that I will write a love letter to my husband during this contest.

And the best part of all:  The grand prize winner will be awarded:
Round Trip Air to Colorado Springs, CO.
Two Nights at The Broadmoor Hotel and Resort
Tickets to the LIVE Focus on Marriage simulcast event
An exclusive dinner with the featured speakers on Feb 26
And Essentials of Marriage products!

The trip will take place from February 26 through February 28.  It is an amazingly significant time frame to be entering this contest- our TEN YEAR wedding anniversary is March 3.  The winners of this contest will be attending this event the weekend before our anniversary.

Can I be any clearer that I am praying- PRAYING that God will give us supernatural Favor and somehow allow us to win this prize.

Not only have Joshua and I been desperately searching for an opportunity to have a weekend away- we have also tried figuring out a way to spend our anniversary... ON A TIGHT BUDGET!

I over think.  I hope very high.  And  I understand this.... "The higher you hope- the harsher the disappointment."  But?  I also know that I have extreme faith.  If I don't win a single contest- I've still got the opportunity to write my husband love letters- and we'll have THAT memory to cling to in the years to come.  I can see it now

 "Remember the time I tried to win us a trip to Colorado for our 10 year anniversary and I wrote all those love letters?"

Love Letter Number TWO

My faithful friend. My heart's desire.
The calm in the storm, you are courage under fire.
In the depth of our struggle; you patiently wait.
With brokeness; I've heard you pray

"Love is patient. It is kind. It trust. It protects. It hopes."
 Most importantly it perseveres.  The part of love that matters most.
 In all my efforts to push you away
 You've stood firm in Love,  you chose to stay.

 We signed a contract- on paper, and in our heart
Agreeing that only death would pull us apart
It doesn't get easier- yet we continue to fight
For our marriage, our children, for what we know is right

We battle, we rage, we fight in this war
Together we aim at the enemy's door
Beside you I'll stand- sword held high
I'll fight for you as you fight for me- for the rest of our lives

Because Jesus Christ held out His arms
Bleeding tears and a crown of thorns
He died for us. He suffered.  He pained.
Fighting for Love will not be in vain!

I love you truly with all of my heart, Joshua!
God has amazingly set it up so that I could write you one letter, per day, for each year we've been married.
In just a few weeks, we'll celebrate 10 years!  
I'll never be able to express how our marriage has awakened a new awareness of just how big our God is.  
According to the "world's standards", we shouldn't be standing beside each other now, loving each other,
and hanging on for dear life as we travel through another valley.
BUT! OH! How sweet it is when we reach that mountain top.  Side by side!

And I'm discovering that the mountain gets higher and higher every time we climb it!