This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every moring: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion saith my soul: therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3: 21-26

Saturday, February 24, 2007

An Old Hymn with a Bit of a New 'Tude

Bear with me as I try to add a little music back into my life.

I used to get up and turn the music on immediately and somehow, somewhere before the holidays I stopped that habit and I need to get back into it again. So I am putting some music up on the blog for a few days. Just kind of a kick start. If it distracts or bothers, feel free to scroll down to the bottom and there is a button to shut it off.

I really believe music is a wonderful form of praise and it seems that sometimes I forget to praise the One who is deserving of all of my praise. The week ended pleasantly and for that alone I am most grateful. The weekend to this point has been like a load is lifted and for that I am praising. Playing today isI Need Thee Every Hour performed by Jars of Clay. Something new will follow Monday.

Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:16

Blessed Sunday.

Image from CWO.

I Need Thee Every Hour

I need Thee every hour, most gracious Lord;
No tender voice like Thine can peace afford.

Refrain
I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.

I need Thee every hour, stay Thou nearby;
Temptations lose their power when Thou art nigh.

Refrain

I need Thee every hour, in joy or pain;
Come quickly and abide, or life is in vain.

Refrain

I need Thee every hour; teach me Thy will;
And Thy rich promises in me fulfill.

Refrain

I need Thee every hour, most Holy One;
O make me Thine indeed, Thou blessèd Son.

Refrain

Words: Annie S. Hawks
Music: Ro­bert Low­ry

Friday, February 23, 2007

Listening

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it."
Isaiah 30 : 21


It is amazing what God plants in your path. The quote from Isaiah was on my sidebar in my biblepromises.com box yesterday. I needed that.

I think I need to spend the weekend with my mouth closed, ears open, listening. For as I tell my children, “You cannot hear if your mouth is running.”

Children are God’s gift that says, “Hey! This is how you are acting. Listen to what you are telling them and apply it to how you treat Me.” (Paraphrase mine—I am sure God says it much more eloquently.)

Oswald Chambers always is waiting with a word to stomp on my toes with. I needed this too:

Joy is the great note all through the Bible. We have the notion of joy that arises from good spirits or good health, but the miracle of the joy of God has nothing to do with a man’s life or his circumstances or the condition he is in. Jesus does not come to a man and say “Cheer up.” He plants within a man the miracle of the joy of God’s own nature. –Oswald Chambers

This picture is how life feels and sounds right now.


Waiting for the thaw.
May your weekend be blessed.
(Edited to add: Isaiah 40:31 is on my sidebar today. I just saw it when I went to look at how Blogger made my post look. I think I will hold tight to that.)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Feeling Like a Fraud

I think the blog title and the moniker are just not very accurate right now and I am feeling pretty bad about that. Apparently I am putting on the pretense in the real world but it feels very dry and is starting to crack. But if there are choices they don’t seem very obvious other than the one to just keep going, putting one foot ahead and following with the other.

We’ve hit Day 29 of DCG being without a job. And what is even more frustrating is that the phone is not ringing, the e-mails are not coming, all is quiet, with the exception of the interview he had Tuesday. It was a second interview with a great company, and I know it is only Thursday…but…we don’t wait well. And it has never. Been. This. Quiet. Before. Never.

I am beginning to think that I misplaced the formula for getting my prayers heard. And then I realize what that sounds like. Like there are magic words with which God can be persuaded to move. Well we know that isn’t true. I am always very leery of those who would tell you to pray a certain prayer and pray in a certain manner and things will go your way. Sounds a little like dancing near that edge of superstition.

My grandma used to pray like that. Pray to St. Theresa or pray to St. Joseph or…I don’t remember the patron saint of hopeless cases, but we prayed a lot to him when I was growing up. And you said a certain number of prayers in a certain order. I now understand about praying to the saints, but we are talking about giving them glory that should go to God. Ascribing to them His power type prayer.

My mother’s friends pray that way, only without the saints involved: if you say it and believe it, God hears it therefore it is true. My mom has cancer. And that is a story for another time. But can you see where that is going? Anyway…those are the kind of prayers that sound good. I just don’t think they are where I should be right now.

Maybe the sackcloth and ashes of Job and the Hebrew people aren’t such a bad idea. I am extremely tired of the “I’m fine” routine. We will be fine; it is fine… God has everything under control… It will work out for good. I come by the “internalization gene” naturally the “Make a Good Face for the World' club was founded by my mother.

I am trying to keep the days normal for the boys and a structure and cheerful face for my guy and I don’t want to burden my friends, because after awhile people get bored of hearing about things. I don’t want to bore them now, because I keep feeling like it might be worse later—and I don’t want them bored before then.

How much longer can I hold on?

Could someone tell me what it is I am supposed to do right now? I think I know the answer and it is, “Hold on.”

I am alternating between fury of having to go through this (again—close to five years ago we lost almost everything, including our home, during that bleak time of IT downsizing and outsourcing ) to being thankful for what I do have. I don’t fear my child will not make it through the night. My husband is my friend and we can cling to each other. I have food and a roof and comfort that many, even in this country do not. I have things I could choose to sell to keep the pantry stocked a little longer. I am rich beyond measure. Why should I expect more? I praise that my life is mine and I am not bearing someone else’s sorrows. I don’t walk my path well…but it seems familiar and while a bit murky and foggy I can still see it.

And so I wait. And hold on.


Psalm 52:8-9

8 But I am like an olive tree
flourishing in the house of God;
I trust in God's unfailing love
for ever and ever.

9 I will praise you forever for what you have done;
in your name I will hope, for your name is good.
I will praise you in the presence of your saints.


By Ka­tha­ri­na von Schle­gel
translated from the German byJane Borth­wick
Music: Finlandia by Jean Sibelius, 1899


Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain.
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change, He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heavenly Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake

To guide the future, as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know
His voice Who ruled them while He dwelt below.

Be still, my soul: when dearest friends depart,
And all is darkened in the vale of tears,
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrow and thy fears.
Be still, my soul: thy Jesus can repay
From His own fullness all He takes away.

Be still, my soul: the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord.
When disappointment, grief and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul: when change and tears are past
All safe and blessèd we shall meet at last.

Be still, my soul: begin the song of praise
On earth, believing, to Thy Lord on high;
Acknowledge Him in all thy words and ways,
So shall He view thee with a well pleased eye.
Be still, my soul: the Sun of life divine
Through passing clouds shall but more brightly shine.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Shadow Box Turned Rubber Stamp Organizer


Lack of storage space has got me looking vertically. Limited funds have me looking creatively. I am a hobby collector and one of my hobbies is rubber stamping. I would much rather spend my money on stamps than those gorgeous cabinets that I see featured in so many magazines. So when I was getting really frustrated with my basket and pile method, I realized how cute or pretty my stamps are. They must look nice if I bought them. So I was trying to figure how to display them and all of a sudden for the small ones I realized that my old shadow box, vintage ‘80s, would work perfectly. Keeps them handy, looks nice on the wall & provides inspiration, keeps them out of a pile…works for me.

Now if someone can show me an inexpensive way to store the big ones.

For more wonderful Works for Me Wednesday ideas head over to Shannon’s Rocks in My Dryer where she hosts some really great ladies and their creative ideas.

Wordless Wednesday

From Friday at the zoo. A trip through the aquarium.






Look here for more Wordless Wednesdays.

Read to Me 2007 Mission


Jennifer at Snapshot has offered at mission dear to my heart. Her Read to Me 2007 Mission (details here) offered a chance to make some solid, written goals for our reading over the next month. I just stumbled onto Jennifer’s blog and was so blessed by what I’ve read there. I hope it’s okay a newbie jumped in a day late.

For both the boys I would like to read J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan to them. A chapter a day doesn’t seem like a lofty goal, but with the running that seems to be increasing instead of decreasing, it does seem doable. I could even read during the hour of down time between basketball and ballet on Wednesdays. With the warming weather sitting in the van at the park won’t seem like such a bad thing. And it really is too muddy to get out when we have some place to go to after. If we finish early Hugh Lofting's Doctor Dolittle will be up after.

For Roo I would like to finish Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. We have been getting about two nights a week together and it is just not enough. I promised him when we finish this book we can watch the movie together again. He is reading six different books right now on his own (I only assigned three of them—he asked to add the rest) at a rate of a chapter a day. Although I think he is reading three or four chapters of Eragon on his own time. So we have four chapters of Sorcerer’s Stone and then I am sure we will head into Chamber of Secrets, which is fine with me. My goal is to finish that by March 19. It's very possible we will finish and then I want to shift from HP for another genre. Johnny Tremaine by Esther Forbes may be just the ticket.

Boo is the one who never wants to read or be read to. Truth be told, if you can lasso him down and get started, he enjoys it immensely. Especially since Daddy has been home and doing his reading to him daily. (But hopefully Daddy’s interview today will put him back in the employed category, so this is likely not to continue as frequently.) His own reading skills are increasing exponentially even though he will still tell me he “can’t.” “Can’t” really translates into “don’t want to” in Boo-ese. In addition to our already scheduled school reading I think for him I will set our read aloud goal with James Herriot’s Treasury for Children, followed by A.A. Milne’s The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh Collection that we own. Boo has that sense of humor that responds to British writing. I am ever so glad.

Many thanks to Jennifer for starting this. I was inspired. Many encouraging ladies posted some great goals and they’re signed up and linked at her sight. Go read here…and then read some more books to your children. We can never read too much.


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Monday, February 19, 2007

Of Peccaries, Parrots and Parents

The weekend began early Friday morning—about 5 a.m. My nephew had his birthday and in the deep of winter wanted to go to the zoo. What to do??? We went!! After a long drive, we met my sister and her two children. And after a side trip to have cousinly, family pictures taken we went to the zoo.

The zoo in winter is lovely if not only for the fact that there are many people who don’t know that it is worthwhile to visit then. I did not miss the crowds and we were able to take the time to see the animals that were on exhibit.

These are Klipspringers. At first I thought the one on the right was stuffed because it. didn’t. move. For. a. really. long. time. It just stood still so I turned to look at the little meerkats to the side of them and turned back and found the little guy eating. No wonder they can hide so well in the wild!

There were lots of neat plants to look at also. This particular zoo rivals a botanical center in my opinion.

We saw these little peccaries and they make the funniest sounds. They are definitely chatterers.

My heart was stolen by these kit foxes. One of them was intrigued by the bag I was carrying and came as close as he could to inspect me. But as soon as the children caught up to me he hopped back up on his little rock. Not up for the boisterous antics of our brood.

My tapir friends from my Wordless Wednesday picture last week were waiting. I love these guys!! They are funny and sweet and too cute for words.

The parrots were more interesting in preening than posing and I didn’t get as good a shot as the one I have on my sidebar. They were chatty as ever and always a treat to watch.

Here are pictures of all four children. Well, pictures of their hands next to a cast of an orangutan’s hand.

Amazing.



Nothing beats the walk under water in the aquarium. I am no photographer, other than the fact I have a camera and I take pictures. I don’t think that qualifies me for the title photographer. However, I did learn a few things with my camera and am anxious to go back and spend some more time trying again.


After the zoo we bundled the children into the car with their “zooveniers” –can’t go to the zoo without a stop at the zoo shop, and off we went—over the river and through the woods. Another ride. We spent the weekend with the grandparents, where if one child has a birthday, everyone gets a gift. They each received marionettes of what else? …Animals. We were entertained all weekend by puppet shows and the squawking and squeaking of the newest additions.

The visit with my parents was bittersweet. Being a child is, I suppose, a hard task. Being an adult child is sometimes more difficult. There is a fine line of what one should offer to help with or not, what one should say or not, do or not…but all in all it was a fine visit and the children were not ready to leave yesterday afternoon. But after the looooooooooooong ride home, filled with listening to C.S. Lewis’ The Last Battle on audio-book, and as many rest area stops as we could make, they decided they were glad to be headed home to their own beds.

The requests for doing all this again soon have been starting already. Must have been a fun time. I thought so.