Thursday, January 29, 2009

And a time to mourn

~ Sitting on the floor, rocking my precious sleeping baby. My baby. Just a foot away from me, my first born is sleeping on the floor, poor little one isn’t feeling well. He just laid down and fell asleep. Music plays - “I will be still and know you are God...”
Tears flood my eyes. I’ve tried to reject this salt water flood all week. Some moments I overcome, other times I give in.
What do I cry for? Injustice. Sin. Death. Ignorance. Life. Loss. Hope. Peace. Love.
I am pro life. In every sense.
This week has me mourning, mourning life lost. ~

~ Laying Next to my child. My child. I think he’s feeling better. I love his little giggles as he watches veggie tales. He keeps sticking his pedialyte freeze pop in my mouth. He’s so sweet.
Last week we mourned the anniversary of the legalization of abortion. Mourning the loss of the people who’s lives were taken by medical means. It is admirable to mourn over this.
This week we mourn the death of my sisters beautiful friend, Abby. Mourning the loss of the earthly presence of this wonderful girl. Trying to rejoice with her as she enters the hope of eternity. It’s inconceivable not to mourn over this. ~

The thing that brings so many tears to my eyes, is the reality of the worth of a life. And the audacity of those who think that they have the right to end another’s life.

Watching the ripple effect of grief as people learn of Abby’s death has been really hard. Being with my sister as she learned of the accident. Talking with grieved people who know and love Joy but never met Abby. Now, I’m sure it saddens you, to hear of this, when you may not have ever met Abby, or Joy. Simply hearing that someone I love, has lost someone whom she loved, is sad news.

And then there is war. And to mourn over this is nothing but the murmurs of an ignorant hippy. Why?

I told Mark that I can’t get Joys sobs out of my head, those deep, terrible, soulful, beautiful sobs. I don’t want them to leave my head. For they are the cries of so many who have lost. Lost a life, and a loved one to war. And to forget those sobs, I feel, is to forget those lives.

I know this sounds so simple and probably idiotic, but every life lost to war, used to be a child. Every life lost to war, was as a baby, cradled and rocked by somebody. Every life lost to war, was loved by someone, somewhere, at sometime. Every life lost, had a mother.

Then I think of my boys.

I think of the tragedy there could be of someone thinking that they had the right to take the life of one of my babies. I think of the pain that Abby’s Family is feeling now. The pain that Joy is feeling now. I think of the heart of God breaking with every “procedure to take care of an unwanted pregnancy”. I think of the people of Iraq. I think of Americas Solders. I think of the People of Sudan. I think of the people of Israel. I think of the people of Palestine. I think of the tragedy there is when we think that one life could be worth more than another.

And I mourn.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Shepherd of my soul

Shepherd of my soul
I give you full control
Wherever you may lead
I will follow
I have made the choice
To listen for your voice
Wherever you may lead I will go
Be it in a quiet pasture
Or by a gentle stream
The shepherd of my soul is by my side
Should I face a mighty mountain
Or a valley dark and deep
The shepherd of my soul will be guide

While singing my son to bed the other night, I realized just how deep a declaration this old familiar chorus is. My mind nods in solemn agreement, my mind heart rejoices at the implication, and my life asks “is this true?”

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A boring update

I feel like it’s been a while, although, it hasn’t. I think it’s because I have a foot long list of all the things I want to write about, but haven’t had a chance to.

First off I’d like to say HE DID IT!!!!!! Gideon used his “big boy potty” once on Sunday and once yesterday! We are very excited. I’m sure we have a long way to go, seeing as he’s still quite young for potty training, but it was exciting just the same. : )

On Sunday we left town for a couples retreat, we brought both kids with us. Silas, for obvious reasons, and Gideon, just because I don’t like to leave my boy. : ) My lovely sister Jenessa came along to help out. So, although we had 2 kids and a sister in our room, and didn’t get a minute of alone time, we were so blessed by the retreat. It was actually meant for pastors and their wives, but Mark played on the worship team with 2 other non-pastors, and because all 3 couples are in ministry, it worked out just fine. The times that we had to sing songs in praise and worship to our God were so amazing! There was a man there who came specifically to minister to the couples in prayer. God really spoke through that man and the other couples, and Mark and I were so encouraged to hear the things that God had to say to us. We had a great time.

One thing that we heard at this retreat, was a confirmation of some of the revelation that Mark and I have been having, that we believed is God inspired. God has been showing us a lot about holiness, and what it means for us, as second generation Christians. Our parents and the parents of most second generation Christians, became Christians during the “holiness movement” of the “Jesus People.” Trying to find our niche in the Christian faith, as the people born to the “Jesus People,” has proved to be a little difficult for this generation. God has been showing Mark and I some things about this, and I’ve really enjoyed being able to learn and discover more about where we fit in the picture. So, I hope to be able to post something soon, sharing my thoughts on this.

I suppose this is all for now. : )

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Explanation - Post the fourth picture on the fourth folder of your pictures and explain! oh yeah, and tag 4 more people.

Well, this is a picture that my sister Joy took. She borrowed our digital camera for a photography assignment last semester. She has a great film camera, but was having trouble with the digital that she usually uses. Anyway, she had to do a presentation and her professor asked her to do it on “death and decay” so she went out and found rotting things… but, it snowed before her project was completed, (covering everything that was “dead and decayed”) so instead, her presentation was on Silas’ birth… which I thing wins any day compared to rotting apples. : )

I Tag Joy, Rissa, Tash, Hannah -

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Sorry about the potty talk

So, I thought I’d give a little update as to how our “potty training time” is going.

Unfortunately, that’s as deep as I’ll get today. I’ve longed to sit and write deeply, but I feel that that takes much more time than a few little goofy thoughts on life. : ) My friends, time, is not something I have to spare these days. : )

Anyway, on potty training -

The day after I posted about potty training Gideon, was our official kick off to the process. I did not do well. I was so psyched about it that I started way to fast, expecting way too much.
He didn’t wear a diaper all day (except for at nap time.) Instead of a diaper he wore training pants, big boy boxers and nothing. : )

My sister Jenessa was hanging out with us that day, so it was good to have her around to hold Silas, read to Gideon as he sat on his potty , and oh yeah, help me clean up EVERY ACCIDENT!
This boy had accident after accident, and I still, somehow thought that I was to allow him to go commando, or whatever diaper less is called. With every accident he had I was very calm, told him it was okay, had him sit on the potty, changed him into fresh underwear...

But then, it happened. Uninhibited chaos struck our home when I turned to say “okay Gideon, it’s time to sit on the potty again” (I could tell something that was a little more solid than urine was going to come, you know, you just learn your kids cues.) He said, as he’s often prone to say “no way!“ and turned and ran around our coffee table, his little bum cheeks clapping as he ran. And then, out it fell, through one of the leg holes in the boxers (what was I thinking? Boxers, at 23 months old?) And I calmly replied “AH! GIDEON GET OVER HERE, AH! NO! DON’T STEP IN IT! NESSA, TAKE SILAS! COME HERE, IT’S ON YOUR SOCK! SIT HERE, DON’T GET UP! GIVE ME YOUR FOOT! CALM DOWN, GIDEON, CALM DOWN! LAY SILAS IN THE CRIB, GET ME A BAG, GRAB THE VINEGAR! UNDER THE SINK, NO NOT THE DISH TOWEL! OH MY GOSH, YOU STEPPED IT IN AGAIN!!! WIPES! JUST GRAB THE WIPES. GIDEON… AHHHH!!!!” And then, it was over, everything was cleaned up. Gideon was sitting on the potty, Jenessa was holding Silas and I was kneeling next to my poor stressed out toddler. “I’m sorry Gideon. Mommy didn’t use self control when I was yelling that way. Yelling didn’t help the situation at all. Will you forgive me?”

He just smiled and said “hug” and then he laid his head on my shoulder and let out the saddest sigh I’d ever heard from a toddler. We bounced back quick from that little tragedy, and had 1 or 2 more accidents that evening. Then wisdom was finally able to say something on the matter and I asked Gideon if he was ready to put a diaper on. Never in his life had he been so happy to wear a diaper. We put his PJ’s on and snuggled as we shared a gingerbread cookie.
Gideon, we’ll take this as slow as you need to.

It’s now nearly 2 weeks later and we’ve had no accidents, his little potty has been sat on many times, but between sitting on it he usually wears a diaper. He hasn’t “gone potty” yet, but I think he’s close.

P.S. We’re working on the “no way” thing… I don’t know where he got that?

Friday, January 9, 2009

Simply Vinegar

So, I have a category in my list of labels called “recommendations” it has the most random sort of things in it. I do feel the need, however, to add yet another totally random post to “recommendations” and it comes in “tip” form.

My “tip” goes as follows.

Buy a gallon of vinegar, and use it!

I pretty much clean with just vinegar and water. (I do use regular old toilet bowl cleaner, and I currently have a name brand eco friendly window/glass cleaner, but that’s because someone gave it to me. Streaks don’t bother me too much, so I usually just use watered down vinegar for windows too.)

Here are a few things I use vinegar for, but not limited to.

About 1 part water to 1 part vinegar, in a spray bottle

  • Countertops
  • Tabletops
  • Sinks
  • Gideon’s highchair
  • Windows (as mentioned earlier, but it does streak)
  • Toys
  • Refrigerator
  • Outside of toilet bowl
  • Carpet (spot treatments)
  • Cars dashboard and steering wheel

Full strength vinegar, usually in a spray bottle

  • Floors
  • Bathtub/shower
  • Inside of toilet bowl (works, but not as well as the thick stuff you can buy, that stays on longer)
  • Landry soap enhancement (you’re probably not supposed to do this, but sometimes when I’m washing an extra dirty prefold (clothe diaper) I add vinegar through the liquid bleach section of the washing machine, I’ve found it removes the scent of urine better than bleach did) I’m such a rebel!
  • Dishwasher (run through an empty dishwasher to get rid of soap buildup)
So, there you have it, it could be the worlds cheapest, safest all purpose cleaner!

And let me tell you, with a boy like Gideon running around I’m SOOO thankful to use a cleaner that’s so safe, you can drink it! It’s saved many a trip to the ER/call to poison control! : )

Here’s an interesting link, with 62 uses for vinegar -

Thursday, January 8, 2009

When Love has run of a house

I just came down the stairs. It’s nap time now, Gideon is snuggly tucked into bed already snoring, and Silas is cuddled up tight to me, inside the Moby Wrap.
It’s kind of rare these days to leave Gideon’s bedroom while he’s sleeping. Usually he needs to fall asleep on his own. We pray, then I sing, but he typically needs to be alone to finally give in and let sleep take over.

Today, he wanted me to sit on the rocking chair while I sang (I think it’s because Silas was with us this time, he usually lays in the basinet while I’m putting Gideon to sleep) But today he said “mamma, baby rock-chair” and as I sang and rocked, Gideon peeped through the crib slats and watched me cradle his brother and sing songs to Jesus.

I can’t explain the look on Gideon’s face, as his beautiful blue eyes blinked slowly, trying to stay locked with mine. It was like at that moment, I was his whole world. I looked down at Silas snuggled close to me, limp with the most peaceful of sleeps. This feeling of awe came over me. “What an incredible job I have!” I thought, as I watched Gideon let go, and give in to his much needed nap. I was taken over by immense gratitude, for being considered worthy of caring for these 2 boys. I thought of the way I felt about my mom, as she sang me to sleep, and I was brought to tears at the thought of someone feeling the same way about me.
This love, my friends, is worth it. It’s worth every dirty diaper, every sleepless night, every tear.
This week has been stressful for me, mostly, I assume, because of hormones trying to balance out as my body remembers what it’s like to not be pregnant. But the stress of this week was melted away, dissolved, disintegrated, at that very moment of intense love.

Stress = mistrust, mistrust = fear, where there is fear, there is an absence of love.

1 John 4:18 (The Message)
To Love, to Be Loved
17-18 God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we're free of worry… There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life… is one not yet fully formed in love.
2 Timothy 1:7 (New King James) For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

I thank God that most days, Love has the run of this house. I pray that someday soon, I’ll allow Love the run of this house EVERYDAY. I pray that I’ll learn the truths of walking on Love every moment of my life. Because Love, is a powerful thing.

May Love have the run of your house, and may this beautiful kind of moment, become personal to you!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Adventures in potty training

So, we’ve begun the daunting task of potty training! (Okay, well, I’ve been potty trained for a while now. I’ve begun to potty train Gideon.) : )

Over the summer I think Gideon was ready, but seeing as how I was very pregnant and heat tends to give me plenty of morning sickness, I just wasn’t ready to start training him. I considered it an accomplishment to drag myself off the couch in order to keep up on disciplining him when he disobeyed. So, I wasn’t about to make things even more difficult! (Can you imagine how many times I’d be up and down with disciplining a toddler AND potty training him) Ha, as if no one has ever done it… I’m acting as if it were this HUGE sacrifice… well, at any rate, I didn’t do it this summer, and now we’re beginning.

I can’t explain why, but there are a few aspects of childrearing that are VERY scary for me. Starting with potty training, next being puberty, (don’t ask me why, I just feel totally intimidated by having to parent an adolescent boy!!!) and last being the entrance into a pre marriage relationship. (dating, courting, betrothal, engagement… whatever) These three milestones are highly intimidating to me!

But, we’ve reached the brink of milestone one, and I’m feeling like I’m facing potty training as if it were a big growling dog. On the outside, I’m smiling, and showing this animal NO FEAR, I’m relaxed and ready to take it on. But inside, I’m crying, “AHHH!!!! ITS GONNA EAT ME!!!! WE WON’T MAKE IT OUT ALIVE!!!!”

Help me out moms, have you felt this way?

I need some tips.

We’ve bought the “big boy potty,” “big boy boxers” and a cute little book to go along with them. Gideon really likes his book, wears the boxers on his head, and is warming up to the potty. So far, I feel good about these things.

But the questions I’m facing are, “do I use ‘treats’ as a reward?” “What actions do I reward?” “Is there ever a point where you begin disciplining for the on purpose “accidents?” (not that we’ve had any, I’m just saying.)

You know, these are the kinds of things I’m feeling so very insure about.

Yet, over and over again, I hear my moms voice saying “just listen to the Holy Spirit, as he leads and guides you through your mothering” and then I hear that verse again,

Isaiah 40:11
He tends his flock like a shepherd:
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young.

I know God cares for the small things, and the small ones. I know God will help us, but, maybe if everyone tells me what’s worked for them, the Holy Spirit will guide me as I sift through your advice. : )