Friday, October 29, 2010

Everyone Needs Blocks


You stack them way up high...


 ...and feel really proud!


Then you can KNOCK THEM DOWN!

Seriously, how much therapy could a $5 set of blocks save us?

Don't tell the psychiatrist I told you this.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Journey

As a parent, I am reminded of my own inadequacies daily.  My weakness in scheduling, in planning ahead, in keeping my patience, in having to go to the bathroom occasionally.  Thankfully, I don't think my kids notice all that much.  They are to busy figuring out how great they are - which is completely normal for their age.  But as time goes on, I know they will realize their mommy is painfully imperfect.  I remember going through that stage myself.  I remember the frustration I had as my parents (who are still my role models) fell from the pedestals on which I had placed them, not through any particular failure of their own but simply through the sharpening of my own awareness.  I became more aware of my own failures then, too, which obviously compounded the problem. 

I came to terms with it gradually.  I accepted that there wasn't some moment and age when I would no longer struggle with these things.  I learned that everything done imperfectly was not just through a decision of my own, but part of who I was as an imperfect human being in need of God's grace in my life.  But I still remember when I grasped the beauty of having this commonality with my parents.

It was the summer after my freshman year at college.  I had decided to join the cross-country team at my college - which is another story for another time.  My Dad is a chaplain in the National Guard and he would run with me from time to time as I (who had never really "run" before) attempted to get into shape.  So on a cool summer evening, we went running. 

The mountain valley where we lived was darkening and the stars were displayed magnificently in the clear sky.  We were about a mile from home on our return lap when we both involuntarily stopped to stare at our surroundings.  The moon wasn't out, but the starlight was enough to illuminate the great shadows of the surrounding peaks.  A meteor shot through the air as we watched while the whistle of the nighthawks filled our ears.  Dad sighed and then spoke, "Hannah, all of this, even us, it is for His glory.  That's why we are here - to glorify Him."  All I could say in reply was "yes". I looked at my Dad and saw the starlight glint off his eyes.  We both stood there in awe, worshiping & praying to our same God and King.  I remember how very small I felt and yet so significant.  To stand next to my father, my Brother in Christ, and glorify our same Creator.  It was beautiful. 

Even the Apostle Paul says, "The good I seek to do, I do not do."  But there lies the beauty.  Through Christ's sacrifice on the cross we are given the grace we desperately need, and through that alone can anything good come from us.  As we realize our inadequacies and we fall at God's throne, grace is poured upon us and through that we, as His children can bring Him glory through our hopeless and fallen lives.  It's a beautiful reality and each that claims Christ's name is unified through it.

Someday my babies will grow up.  Someday they will be hurt by my inadequacy, the inadequacy of others and even their own.  But I pray that when those times come (for there will be many) they will seek the forgiveness and healing of their Heavenly Father.  They will seek to live by the Spirit gifted to them.  They will realize the grace that is needed because we are so, so imperfect.

And they will join their parents as brothers and sisters in the journey to bring God glory.  
A journey that isn't finished yet.

Monday, October 25, 2010

1/2



It's been half a year since our baby boy joined the family.  He was born at home, one of my greatest wishes come true.  At the risk of sounding completely cliche, I cannot believe it's already been that long.  And I absolutely cannot imagine life without him.

I call him "Angel-Baby" because, as long as he is near mama, he is the happiest baby on earth.  Observe...







Brandt, 

You are such a precious gift from God.  We thank Him for the merry spirit He has placed in you, for your determined personality, and that you are ours to raise.  We pray that even now, you would know the love of your Heavenly Father and that you would never know a day that you do not trust in Him.  Our heart's desire is that you would know Him as your Savior and worship Him with your life.  The love we have for you is overwhelming, but we know that you are completely the Lord's child.  Even now, the joy you share is a blessing to those around you.  May you continue to share it for many years to come. 

Happy 1/2 Birthday 
my Son!


An Evening at the Pond

Last night was cool and crisp with just a hint of warmth.  The leaves are beginning to speak of fall.  While the sun set, we walked to the pond for some family time and to throw in a line.  Fishing was not necessarily to catch anything (which was good 'cause we didn't), just a reason to experience the glorious evening.  Here are some pics.




















My heart is so full.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Learning From Example

Cocoa is Charissa's most beloved dolly.  She is tenderly clothed, bathed, fed, nursed, rocked, sung to, swaddled, and carried in a sling. Charissa is a very dedicated little mommy.  

But there are times when the stresses of motherhood become to much for her 2 year old self and she does things...strange things.  Things like this for example:


Naked and plastered in puzzle stickers, 
Miss Cocoa has been abandoned.

"Why me?"
Poor Cocoa.
At least you have a pillow under your head.

Once she has a few more years on her, I have no doubt Charissa will be a wonderful mommy.  But in the meantime, I am very glad her baby is currently made of cloth and plastic. 

Now if you'll excuse me.  Brandt is pulling off his puzzle stickers and putting them in his mouth.

Friday, October 22, 2010

When making cookies...


Remember the sound effects.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Mobilization

"What's that?"

"I'm going to get it!"

"Oh man.  This is hard work!"

"I'm pretty great, huh, Ma?"

"Today the rattle, tomorrow the WORLD!"


 He can also get into the crawl position but flops on his belly if he wants to get anywhere.


 Like across the room to play with Big Sis. 


It's the end of the world as we know it.

A Good Cat

"Ahh, chin rub!"
This is our cat Clyde.  A friend gave him to me for my birthday last year.  They had found him living in a drainpipe.  Upon arrival to our home, he immediately killed and ate a cicada.  I knew we would be friends from then on.  I hate cicadas.

I named him Clyde because I had just finished the story of Bonnie and Clyde.  He looked like a Clyde to me.  Good looking but dangerous.  He can catch a bird on the wing - I've seen it.  He can catch a rat the size of himself.  He likes to tease 6 foot long snakes.  Any snake smaller than that, he will catch and crush their head.  He's a crazy hunter.

Honestly, I'm not that much of a cat person.  I will never, ever, ever have a litter box in my house.  There are many cats that are just to snobby for me.  But Clyde behaves like a dog.  He follows me everywhere, he takes walks, he greets you when you come home, he comes to a whistle, and never disappears for days.  Any hint of being snobby I find somewhat earned.  Because for goodness sake, I can't catch a bird on the wing.

Clyde is a "character" as far as cats go and I never want to lose him.  But the following is the main reason I never want to lose Clyde:

DISCLAIMER: the following toddler began the day wearing a clean, 
coordinated outfit with her hair up in a ponytail.  I try.  I really, really do.


He was purring the whole time.
 And that, ladies and gentlemen is
A GOOD CAT!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Care and Keeping

 This is a Happy Baby. 


Bounce a Happy Baby on your knee while saying the following:
"This is the way the Gentlemen ride,
Gallop-a-trot!  Gallop-a-trot!
This is the way the Ladies ride,
Trot-trot!  Trot-trot!  Trot-trot!
This is the way the Farmers ride,
Hobble-dee-hoy! Hobble-dee-hoy! Hobble-dee-hoy!"


 This is a Neck Roll.

 

Kiss the Neck Roll at least 20 times daily.


 Directly above said Neck Roll is The Ear.


Nibble The Ear as often as you can.  
WARNING: this practice is extremely addicting.
(Please note the laundry on the couch.  Actually, please don't.)


THIS...



 
 Is a Bed Head.

I have absolutely no recommendation.

Except to tickle her.