Friday, December 30, 2011

top ten

this year:
16 people viewed my natural habits are not my best habits.

29 people viewed happy birthday to me!.

41 people viewed He designs my life.

72 people viewed perfect motivation.

90 people viewed my cup runneth over.

101 people viewed inspiration.

137 people viewed confidence.

148 people viewed it's the little things i love.

195 people viewed Godly judgment in human form.

244 people viewed work willingly.

one that i am surprised is not on the top ten list is simplify sunday.

**if you were one of the people that stopped by and read my ramblings, thank you! i hope to see you back in the new year!

Monday, July 4, 2011


i'm proud to be an american, where at least i know i'm free. and i won't forget the men who died who gave that right to me, and i'd gladly stand up next to you and defend her still today. because there ain't no doubt i love this land! God bless the u.s.a.!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

things i want done in 2011

repaint the family room (light blue)
organize the boys' shoes, hats, gloves, winter coats, etc
empty the downstairs closet floor
purchase a black bookshelf for the eating nook
wainscoting for the dining room
hang new pictures/wall scones in the dining room
add 2 chairs and a fireplace to the living room - *partial CHECK, new chairs/no fireplace*
reduce number of dvds - *CHECK*
clean desk out - *CHECK*
move bookshelves from office to upstairs - *CHECK*
new light in the upstairs closet
get the boys' football stickers up
drapes in all rooms
take toy box to the garage - *CHECK*
sidewalk and patio (cement)
build a workbench
find extra school supplies a home - *CHECK*
go thru scrapbook stuff - *CHECK*
research jobs-from-home
email the year's tax donations to hubby - *CHECK*
buy a king bed
sell car and bravada to buy a new vehicle
declutter books! - *CHECK*

Sunday, May 1, 2011

the first day of may

may day. candy baskets. ringing the doorbell and running away. the kiss if caught. special childhood memories. today would have been my dad's 60th birthday. i made baskets for my neighbors in his honor. love you and miss you, dad.

Monday, April 18, 2011

outwardly simple and inwardly rich

what does God ask from us?

He has shown you, o man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God? ~Micah 6:8

he asks us to do three things:
1) act fairly
2) show compassion and kindness
3) be humbled in following the Lord's will

i want to keep this constantly in my mind as i struggle during my day.

you show your perfection even in your requests about my behavior. you are more humble in your Godliness than i am in my fallen humanness. instill your requirements in my brain and in my heart and in my actions. hold me by the hand and rear me to your standard. i ache to be more caring and thoughtful to the family and friends around me. show me my failings. help me to honor You through the people i love, by surpassing their expectations of my graciousness in a supernatural way only You make possible. i am joyfully your child and your servant and your burden forever.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Boys Fighting
Company in four days
Bible Study
Boys need attention
Company in three and a half days
Oy! Disorganization
Boys driving me crazy
Company in two and one quarter days . . .

Hanging in there.

"There are 2 ways to get enough. One is to continue to accumulate more and more. The other is to desire less." ~G.K. Chesterton

Sunday, March 6, 2011

He restores my soul

a friend's birthday cake, lots of wine, snacking on crackers, and sitting and scrapbooking all day are not good for my waistline, but are great for my disposition. i praise you, Lord, for these moments of fun.

Friday, March 4, 2011

in Christ alone my hope is found

here i am wanting. again. wanting the impossible. wanting my dad to call up the boys and ask them about their roller hockey game tomorrow. wanting his advice on adding a shower to the downstairs bathroom. wanting to show him the great deal on a shed we got off from craigslist. wanting moments that will make me 'happy'.

happiness is not found in moments or 'things'. it is found in God. i know this. i do.

how come it is so hard for my head to wrap around then?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

looking forward, looking back

i don't know why but i am obsessed with posts on new year's resolutions this year. check out this one:


When I was a teacher a PIP was a professional improvement plan, I was never assigned one of those. For now, my PIPs are going to be my personal improvement projects, the things I'm going to work on this year. This list is just the beginning, I'm sure I will be adding to or changing it as time goes on.

1. House
I want to create a routine for cleaning and organizing my home and keeping it that way.

2. Time
I want to gain better control of the clock and calendar.

3. Money
I want to stay on budget, reduce debt, save more, use coupons effectively, be frugal and spend wisely.

4. Family
I want to spend personal time with each kid and help them learn to be responsible around house. I want to spend adult time with my husband.

5. Food
I want to meal plan every week, try new recipes each month, get the kids helping me prepare the meals and eat better by reducing the amount of packaged food and preservatives.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

elbow deep in the business of life

today my plans were waylaid. sometimes i guess that is how it goes. one son has influenza a and the other one has influenza b. so nice that they could both come visit at the same time. :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

stumbling along

trying to be faithful.

Monday, February 28, 2011

reason, season or lifetime

today a friendship ended. i am trying to practice generosity and wish her well but it is hard. i want to rant and rail about unfair expectations, but i will refrain. she was a friend during a period of time that i needed it and so i will be thankful for her presence in my life, not bitter about the parting.

Lord, i ask you to bless amy. you know what a difficult time she is going thru, with her depression and the troubles with her family. comfort her as only you can and give her peace in you. please send a new friend to her so she is not so lonely.

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.

When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.
~author unknown

Friday, February 25, 2011

you can have it all!

...just not all at the same time.

the life i have is a good one. an enviable and simple one. but i have not had a grateful heart lately and it bothers me that i am not more thankful for all that God has given to me. i have been bitter and ugly about some things. i have been controlling. i have been whiny and needy.

i want this. i want that.
i want, i want, i want.

i know the life i have is a good one. i know that getting stuff is not what happiness is about. i know that i am loved and provided for. i look around and see how much i have, how many of my everyday needs are met.

i still feel something missing.

'you can have it all just not all at the same time.' sometimes people are faced with hard choices, like the choice between food or medicine. many choices can seem insignificant. what to eat, what to wear, what to watch.

some choices we pretend we have no control over. a thought. an attitude. a comment.

i can have ambition or i can have contentment. i can have self-pity or i can have gratitude.

what is it that i want? i want a servant's attitude. please help me, Lord. fill me with gratitude for all that i have and have it pour out of me everyday.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

you're beautiful

i love this song from mercy me. i hope it blesses you today too.

Days will come when you don't have the strength
And all you hear is you're not worth anything
Wondering if you ever could be loved
And if they truly saw your heart
They'd see too much

You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You're beautiful

Praying that you have the heart to fight
Cuz you are more than what is hurting you tonight
For all the lies you've held inside so long
But they are nothing in the shadow of the cross

You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You're beautiful

Before you ever took a breath
Long before the world began
Of all the wonders He possessed
There was one more precious
Of all the earth and skies above
You're the one He madly loves
Enough to die!

You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You're beautiful

Thursday, February 17, 2011

this i know...

jesus loves me.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

a life worthy

With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. ~2 Thessalonians 1:11

today was the funeral of an 11 year old boy. the thought of losing one of my sons makes me sick to my stomach. sick. and fearful. i pray constantly for my children to grow old so i don't have to know the pain of losing a child. i pray occasionally for my children to be good men; good husbands; faithful, honest and just.

i think i have it backwards. i should pray constantly for my children to be worthy of God's blessing, to grant them greatness for the Lord's army, and only occasionally for their health, safety and longevity. whoo-boy, hard for my mommy heart to do.

heavenly father, i pray for my sons, football and artist, to know you in their hearts and live you in their lives. i pray for them to submit to your authority and resist satan. i pray for them to fear you and gain wisdom. i pray for them to act obediently as your hands and feet in this world. i pray for them to be salt and light. i pray for them to make decisions based upon your word. i pray for them to show love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control to everyone they encounter to glorify your holy name. blanket them with your grace and mercy, and call them blessed. amen.


more prayers at, and

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

my cup runneth over

yellow tulips, dinner and a movie, picture frame for our family picture, three new serving bowls (the boy know how much i love dishware!), a calendar and $50 gift certificate to my favorite store. i am so lucky... blessed... loved!

supper with a friend tonight, pedicures with a friend tomorrow, scrapbooking with several friends on friday night, and watching a movie with a friend saturday afternoon. my heart is full.

plus, today looks like the perfect day for a run (50 degrees at only 9a.m.) and i am going to head out after work!

**Join us for Gratituesday at Heavenly Homemakers!

Monday, February 14, 2011

happy valentine's day

this morning i am making stained glass hearts (shaved crayons and wax paper) and writing poems for my boys. this afternoon i will attend their valentine's parties, and this evening i will be making them a wonderful supper and watching the cobsy show.

royal lion with a tender heart
yearning for deep friendship
artistic dreamer and creative thinker
no smile is as bright as yours

eager to please with a
voracious desire to learn
aspiring to play football
noble in thought and deed

Sunday, February 13, 2011

His banner over me is love

the Lord is mine and i am His.

i found myself humming today, completely out of the blue. it was a happy tune and made me feel good. i couldn't place the song right away, but once i realized what i was humming, i stopped. stopped and thought about the words.

the Lord is mine and i am His; His banner over me is love.

He covers me with love. He calls me his own. He saves me from myself. He allows me to lean into Him with my troubles and worries. He is mine.

such generosity from my Lord and King.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

fill my soul

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. ~1 peter 4:10

fill my soul so full that it overflows and you can use me to serve others. i love you Lord.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

how to really give

i read a post online that really encouraged me and i hope it encourages you too.
start here -


How to Really Give:

* Don’t limit your giving or make it fit into your pre-conceived ideas - give of yourself, your time, your money, your life. Give more than feels comfortable.
* Involve your children - even let them lead you. There’s a reason God asks us to have child-like faith.
* Trust God - giving is partner to trust. We often don’t give because we don’t trust. It’s hard to really give with open hands when we’ve clenched our fists over what we possess.
* Don’t be surprised if you fall in love with giving! There’s something deeply spiritual and satisfying about letting it go and giving it away.

**and then read the rest of this post here -

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

embracing the path

generosity comes easily to some people. for me, it is usually a secondary thought. like when you are talking with someone, and after they have walked away you remember that you forgot to ask them how they are doing since their husband lost his job or their pet died or whatever. for my husband, generosity comes naturally. he is eager to be helpful and thoughtful.

this morning the snow was coming down in bucketfuls. bfp woke me up and said, 'i want you to take my vehicle this morning'. i mumbled 'okay' and rolled over to go back to sleep. bfp left me a sweet note with his keys and even turned the vehicle around so i could pull straight out of the garage instead of backing up. he has embraced being generous.

i am helpful and thoughtful too, but it takes more of an effort on my part. i am glad that i am challenging myself to be more conscious of giving this month. it is helping me to see where God can shine through me in the little things.

Monday, February 7, 2011

it's the little things i love

you know how sometimes you get in a funk and you can't get out of it? well that's been me lately with cleaning the house. i was in a funk. i couldn't get out of it.

i decided to switch things up.

i wrote down 12 chores i do to keep the main floor clean on notecards - mudroom, bathroom, clutter, dust, sweep, mop, dining table, vacuum, dishes, counters, trash and mirrors.

now we make cleaning a game that everyone participates in. everyone draws a card (keeping mopping and the counter out until sweeping and dishes are done), i set the timer for 10 minutes and we race to complete it. we do this 3 times for a half hour total. ten minutes is the limit so if the chore isn't done, it will wait for the next cleaning. now that we have been doing this bi-weekly (or more), each chore usually takes less than the ten minutes to complete! the kids are so proud when they beat the timer.

i am loving it and the boys, including bfp, don't mind helping out either. i love how much time it saves me (30 minutes of cleaning versus 2 hours). i love that the kids are helping more without a fight. i love that no one has the same job to do each time. i love that it makes cleaning a little bit fun.

it's the little things.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

some days you wake up sad

summer, fall, winter, spring.
not just weather,
my life is in the midst of winter.
cold, dreary winter.
the snow is falling, the wind is blowing, the storm surrounds me.
i look out into the frigid white and see the frozen beauty,
perfect and agonizing.
it makes my heart race and my breathe stick in my throat.
it leaves me chilled
and melancholy.
this storm will pass.
another may take its place.
but that storm will also pass.
the icy, brittle blanket of winter can not stay forever.
spring will come.
will soften the unblemished landscape to dirty mushy gray.
will melt the painful sorrow to reveal traces of
dingy beauty.
the slush will recede,
and the hurt will be soaked up.
Sometimes it's gonna be days like this
Sometimes it's gonna be rain like this
Sometimes you're gonna feel pain like this
Sometimes you gotta work hard for it

Saturday, February 5, 2011

He designs my life

He has a purpose for everything. and everyone. even judas.

sometimes that thought is hard to think. i like hating judas. i like thinking that judas was a waste of humanity. i like judging judas for what he did. but judas had a purpose. without judas, the chain of events leading my savior to die for my sins would not have been set into motion.

there are many people i don't like - i don't like their opinions, political views, actions, tone of voice, etc. sometimes, i *like* not liking them. sometimes, i feel superior to them.

they are God's children and He has a purpose for them.

uh oh, looks like i need an attitude adjustment. thank you, Lord, for this opportunity to grow!

Friday, February 4, 2011

defining moments

on mondays and thursdays i work with a hoarder to try and clean up the apartment. my client hoards empty soda cans and napkins, as well as the typical clothes, accessories, knickknacks, magazines, mementos, etc.

yesterday, my client was willing to dump 7 boxes of photographs, but would not release 7 napkins. it made perfect sense in my client's mind to keep the napkins but release the pictures. the napkins of past meals enjoyed held more value for my client than the photos of family and friends. it made me sad that my client was keeping trash instead of captured moments in time. but it got me thinking - if my heart were an apartment, what would people see?

would they see a mess? would they see the clutter of a hoarder? would they see that because of clutter, i can not find the things that mean the most? would they see that i threw out the important things?

how often do i release the valuable things, but keep the trash?

how often do i mistake the trash for something important? why do i get upset about missing 60 seconds of t.v. when my child (who is supposed to be in bed) is hollering that they need me? why do i get irritated with my husband when i have to repeat myself? these things are not important and yet i treat them as if an inconvenience is more valuable than the people i love.

it helps to be able to recognize what is trash and what is meaningful. trash is all things that don't honor and glorify God's love for us. meaningful is what God finds lovely, true, right, excellent, worthy, virtuous. i like a clean, clutter-free house... and i want a pure, holy heart. i don't need 7 boxes of photographs to recall what God's love is, but i won't release them to make room for garbage/napkins. from now on, trash is not welcome in my heart. there is only room for meaning.

**what trash do you hoard in your heart? what are you willing to let go of?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

intentional living

"If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there." ~Lewis Carroll

day three of being more generous with my time and my talents: volunteering at the retirement center. i enjoy my time with the elderly and do not consider it 'work' to be with them. my boys are coming with me which divides my attention (as i have to make sure they are behaving appropriately). i love sharing stories with these people and listening to their knowledge. it seems to me as if many of them lived their life with the end result in mind. they knew where they wanted to end up; it didn't 'just happen'. if they wanted a new car, they saved up for one and didn't buy it on credit. if they wanted to travel, they planned it down to the last detail. if they wanted to 'go out', they took dance lessons and went to the moose or vfw. if they wanted a clean house, they made a schedule and stuck to it. they lived life intentionally. i hope someone says that about me when i am that age.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


what does it mean to serve someone? more specifically, what is the meaning of 'serve'?

-to be of use or benefit
-to prepare and offer
-to wait on
-to give obedience
-to labor on behalf of
-to exert yourself in aid of

having made the decision to give more generously of my self (my time and my talents) during february, i am placing myself in the service of my children again today (another snow day). we are making crafts, playing computer games together and talking.

it sounds idyllic, but it is tiring to practice an attitude of servanthood towards my children. i was bound to their needs when they were younger, but i kind of felt like because they were older, we were beyond this. yesterday and today have shown me how much my children still need and want my undivided attention. no matter how tired i am.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

28 days of giving

this month i want to work on being more generous. i want to make a conscious effort to give more every day. even when i don't feel like it. we (bfp and i) are fairly good about giving of our money, so i want to give of my time and my talents.

today, i am spending time with my children making cookies and playing games. i am giving them compliments and encouragement. i am pushing aside my own desire to veg out on the couch, and although we are having fun, the constant focus on THEIR wants is exhausting.

Monday, January 31, 2011

snowland adventure

it is cold and snowy here, and school has been canceled for tomorrow. i have prepped the cookie dough and hot chocolate, but i need some crafty ideas. i'm thinking about having them make a pendant sign for valentine's day or a footprint angel. what are your favorite kids crafts?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

the 'perfect' time

note to self: is there a perfect way to exercise? no! the perfect exercise is the one you will do each day. is there a perfect way to organize? no! the perfect organization is the one you will follow. is there a perfect time to get started? no! so why wait for the clock to hit :00, :15, :30, or :45? the perfect time is never. just start!

Friday, January 28, 2011

*this just in*

i'm a perfectionist.

my husband reminded me that sometimes life doesn't have to be perfect; sometimes God uses the imperfections.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

my natural habits are not my best habits

i struggle with myself sometimes. the things that i want to get done fight with the work required to DO them. does that make sense? my natural inclination is to rest, take it easy, watch some t.v., be lazy. but goals can't be accomplished by resting, taking it easy, watching some t.v., or being lazy. i am fighting against inertia.

inertia is a habit i have allowed myself to get away with when saying that 'good enough' is okay.

i believe (for most things) lasting change comes slowly. so slowly it almost doesn't seem like change. we've all heard 'slow and steady wins the race'. it is especially true when the race is a long one. a life-long one.

the problem is i want the change NOW.

i want to be the Godly woman i see in my head, the proverbs 31 woman - the one that prays eloquently, the one that knows the bible inside and out, the one who is a good communicator and companion for her spouse, the one who is the most beloved mommy, the one who makes their house a home/haven/refuge, the one who works a career successfully and prosperously, who is beautiful and healthy and fit.

people that say 'patience is a virtue' are wrong. patience is a habit. just like saying 'no' to sweets and snacks is a habit. just like brushing your teeth everyday is a habit. just like becoming THAT woman is a habit.

habits are reinforced action. inertia can be pushed into momentum.

my goals become reality when i choose the 'better' habit instead of the 'natural' habit... everyday. i become the person who can accomplish great things for the glory of God.

i am my habits. so i better make them good ones.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


do you have excess in your life? not abundance. excess. excess of 'stuff'? excess of drama? excess of weight?

i do. i have much more than i need... exceeding normal; surpassing proper limits. yuck! excess is draining. excess is about me trying to wrestle control from God. i try to out-plan God. how silly i am.

what a difference abundance is from excess. abundance is fullness overflowing, a great supply. it feels ENERGIZING. it is meant to be given away.

i don't like that my excess blocks me from sharing my abundance.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

work willingly

my parents taught me to work hard, but they didn't teach me to work joyfully. or maybe they tried and i just failed at it. (what can i say? i'm deeply flawed.) if you are like me and can stand to have a little less chaos in your life, then try implementing some short and easy routines to your morning, afternoon and before bed. mine are pretty simple and are easy to do with a happy heart.

-Make Bed
-20-30 Minutes of Exercise
-Get Dressed to Shoes
-Moisturize Face/Wear Mascara
-Quickly Clean up the Sink
-Check the Calendar
-Eat Breakfast/Take Medicine

-Feed Cocoa (kids)
-Empty Dishwasher (kids)
-Homework (kids)
-Read One Chapter in the Bible
-Reboot Laundry (one load a day)
-Clean or De-Clutter Paper for 15 Minutes
-Play a Game
-Start Supper
-Drink 8 Glasses of Water

-Check the Calendar
-Lay out Clothes for Tomorrow
-Put Needed Items at the Door
-Spend 2 Minutes Cleaning Living Room
-Clean off Countertops
-Feed Cocoa
-Drink Water/Take Medicine
-Wash Face/Brush Teeth
-Go to Bed by 11p.m.

Monday, January 24, 2011

how to make tomorrow different from today

how are you doing on your new year's resolutions? are you about burnt out? ready to give up? haven't even started? where ever you are, take a minute to read this essay. making small changes = lasting changes.


The following are goals may look a little familiar. In 2011 I will:

-Be more prepared
-Get more rest
-Embrace frugality

Uh huh, sure I will. I mean those goals sounds nice on paper -or my computer monitor as it were- but how will they happen?

Having the New Year fall on a weekend tends to make the first Monday of the year feel like any other. Those carefully thought out resolutions or goals, if you must, tend to go right out the window as we slide back into our usual routines. Don’t let that happen this week.

What if today you did things a little differently?
What if you changed the way you looked at your calendar/planner?

Why not look at your calendar and instead of the usual I have x to do this week, you said. What do I need to do today to get ready for x? And then, what if you actually did it? That’s the important part, you know.

What if tonight you looked at the weather and figured out what you were going to wear tomorrow?

And then, you took it a step further and made sure that it was clean and not rolled into a ball somewhere. Are planning on kicking off the new year with a session at the gym? What if you got your gym bag packed and ready to go. It’s one less excuse. While you’re at it, find your keys.

What if tonight you went to bed a little earlier than usual?

With Hulu, Netflix, DVRs, etc. Really, what IS your excuse? I promise the news will still be the news in the morning (and the afternoon and the evening, just with more gory details and additional drama). The news is always there.

What if you set your alarm ten minutes ahead?

Showing up a little too early is not the worst thing that will happen in your day.

Arriving on time isn’t just about getting yourself out the door when you should, it’s allowing buffer time for everyone else’s screw ups.

In my opinion, buffer time is awesome time.

I used to keep a book in the car, now a smartphone fills that role. However, there’s more than entertainment to life, you could: take a walk around the building or parking lot, menu plan, meditate or pray, etc.

It’s ok to step out of busyness and just be.

What it tomorrow you had coffee at home instead of at Starbucks?

Even if you buy the fancy beans or grounds, it’s still a fraction of the cost. Let’s pretend you drink one of the cheaper options $3.00 x 260 = $780. If passing up the caramel macchiato extra whip every day makes you cry, what if you turned the Starbucks run into a Friday treat? Now, you’ve got something extra to look forward to, and you’re still probably keeping $624 or so in your budget. (I’m a plain latte or cappucino girl myself. At home it’s just cafe au lait, if you were curious.)

Please, whatever you do, don’t tell me you buy the oatmeal at Starbucks. If you need to know how to make awesome oatmeal at home, just read this post on making oatmeal at home.

Now think about the time not spent in the drive through or waiting in line. . . Yup, you just found some more awesome time.

None of these are big changes, they are just small steps in a positive direction.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

simplify sunday

i like easy. i like simple. i sometimes confused easy for simple... do you?

i'm slowly realizing the two are NOT the same. easy means not difficult, requiring no effort, free from reflection. simple means modest, humble, one part, not blended, uncomplicated.

as i try to simplify some aspects in my life, i am becoming more aware that sometimes simple is hard. it requires thought, work, and continuous effort. it requires routines and organization. it requires attention.

we are trying to cut back on eating out. it is easy to grab something in the drive-thru or let someone else cook at a restaurant. you don't have to think beforehand about what's for dinner. you don't have to plan ahead or buy groceries. you don't have to do the actual cooking or cleaning up. why not stick with easy? because easy comes at a cost. the cost for us is finances and health.

on the other hand, it is simple to prepare a nutritious, healthy meal for my family. to do this, i just need to plan ahead. even though planning ahead may sometimes be difficult and time-consuming, it frees me from stress.

same with clearing out clutter. it is easy to run to the store and be dazzled by some beautiful item you just have to have. it is simpler to only buy what you need to keep your home running smoothly. what happens when you accumulate more than you need? it becomes clutter, and causes you anxiety and strife. sifting through the memories attached to a physical item is definitely not easy; but the feeling of harmony from having only what you need, use and love is simple.

living a balanced life is simple but not easy. what might take more planning on your part to make your life less complicated? what 'stuff' can you release to live more modestly?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

start a trend saturday

take a look at your life. really examine it. is it a life that other people would want to mimic? not in a keeping-up-with-the-joneses kind of way or everything-is-so-perfect kind of way, but in a genuine that-family-really-loves-each-other kind of way.

what new idea can you implement today that would bring joy to your family? turn off the saturday morning cartoons. cook up some pancakes with chocolate chip smiley faces. get out a board game. it's time to start a trend!

Friday, January 21, 2011

family favorite friday

do you have one day that you spend doing a family activity? we try. not only does it help our boys listen to us the rest of the week, but it provides us all with a good laugh. tonight, during our family favorite friday, we are going roller skating. it is going to be so fun! (but pray that bfp and i don't break something. lol.)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

thankfulness thursday

i have much to be thankful for. my beautiful home, my sweet puppy, my healthy kids, my husband who provides so well for us. i am abundantly blessed.

this morning i am thankful for my clean kitchen countertops that hubby shined for me last night. i am thankful to be spending my day with a client i enjoy. i am thankful for a website to track my calories and the friends i have made there. i am thankful for the delicious meal i made for lunch. i am thankful for HEAT and warm water. i am thankful for my car that allows me freedom. i am thankful for my date on sunday morning with my husband (running a 5k called the polar bear run). i am thankful for winter exercise clothes. i am thankful for the money my dad left me (the check arrived and i need to cash it). i am thankful for my sister's happiness and my brother's future child. i am thankful for my mom's generous spirit. i am thankful for beauty that God created (internal and external). i am thankful for computers.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

i wish wednesday

today, i wish:

-i were a natural runner
-it was easy to lose weight
-i could eat whatever i wanted whenever i wanted however much i wanted :)
-my house stayed magically clean
-my boys didn't bicker
-i had two daughters, as well as my two sons
-we lived closer to family
-we had more money than we could spend
-my husband and i spent more time being productive
-i spent more time being thankful for all that God has given me

sometimes my wishes are fanciful or unmotivating or shallow. sometimes they are soulful longing.

sometimes they are just a bit humorous like this song:
I wish I was little bit taller,
I wish I was a baller
I wish I had a girl looked good
I would call her.
I wish I had a rabbit in a hat with a bat
and a '64 Impala...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

to-do list tuesday

one load of laundry (sheets)
make beds
30 day shred
run 3 miles
help boys with homework
play game with boys
make supper
volunteer at retirement center
clean counters

Monday, January 17, 2011

make a difference monday

the boys don't have school today. (federal holiday, ya know.) the distruption to my normal routine is beyond frustrating. (to say the least!) my morning has been full of whininess, bickering, and crabby, needy boys... but i am reminded of proverbs 14:1 -

"The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down."

it would be so easy to let my frustration 'pull down this house with my own hands' (aka ruthless words or nasty tone of voice). my make-a-difference-monday goal is to be sweet in word and action to my loving sons all day before shipping them back to school tomorrow. (with a hidden happy dance, of course.)

**how are you making a difference today?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

what happened to sleep-in sunday?

bfp woke me up at 6am to go to the 7am service. i was not a happy camper. :( remember when sunday used to mean sleeping in... no, not really? me neither, but i had a dream that it happened once.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

happy news

my sister got engaged last night! she has been wanting this for a while, so i am really happy for her. i can't help thinking about how the wedding will have one missing person though. if i am thinking about it (and it's not even my wedding), i am sure it is also on my sister's mind as well. bittersweet.

Friday, January 14, 2011

tough questions

just a thought today: what is obvious about you? for example, red shoes are obvious. an orange pea coat is obvious. purple hair is obvious. those are all external. do internal traits show through?

is God's grace and mercy obvious in you? do you shine with God's love? is your passion for doing 'right' obvious? do you practice what you believing with your children and co-workers?

is there a difference in what you think is obvious about you, and how your closest friends and family would answer?

i'm low on words today, so that is all i have to say.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

using my time?

a friend told me to look for ways to use my time to honor God and bless others. so it made me think about how i use my time normally. am i using it to honor God? am i using it to bless other? to be honest, no. i use my time selfishly.

i am going to work on that.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

free your mind

there is an old song (i'm not going to date myself by saying how old) with the lyrics 'free you mind and the rest will follow' and i find that to be true. as i was running today, i let my mind wonder and the workout just flowed. free your mind and your feet will follow. :)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Romans 12:2 talks about letting God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. do you find it as comforting as i do that i am not required to change on my own? God will help me change, or be renewed. as i pray about my dreams, goals, resolutions and aspirations, and do the work to achieve them, i feel God bringing about a change in me - my thoughts... my actions... even what my goals and aspirations are. he is transforming me, little by little, to become more like him.

Monday, January 10, 2011


i started work again. as much as i loved doing it, i was also dreading it (and i couldn't fingure out why). when i pulled up to the client's building, i got this overwhelming sense of guilt. i realized that my last day of work was the day my dad died and that i missed being at his bedside because of feeling responsible to my clients and fulfilling my shift. :(

it was hard walking in the door, but my client was so grateful to see me again and i am happy to be able to help her. :) it hurts my heart to be there, but it is healing as well. please pray for me and my emotions.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

if you want something, do something!

in addition to my new year's resolutions, i also have a few hopes for the year: continue running longer distances, lose the last 10 pounds, do p90x once, stick to our (new) budget and find a publisher for my children's book.

i submited my book to a well-respected editor and she has agreed to take a look at it and give me some feedback. next step will be to revise and then find an agent. whoo!

as for running, i have already signed up for 3 races already this year - a 15k in new york city for colon cancer in march, a half-marathon in deadwood, sd in june and a 5k for prostate cancer in denver in september. i hope to compete in a race a month.

**what do you want to accomplish and what are you doing to make it happen?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

productive saturday = lazy sunday

i love it when we have a productive day. i love it even more when that productive day is on a saturday, which means our sunday will be couch-potato-land. :) we went to the elks hoop shoot for the oldest to compete (he had fun), took cocoa to the vet for her yearly check-up (she did not), did a load of dishes (put away clean and loaded up again), completely cleaned the kitchen, dusted and vacuumed the living room, had a nice family meal for lunch, cleaned the dining room, exercised (ouch! poor thighs), completed six loads of laundry (i normally do a load a day but this week i didn't, so it was all done today), oldest son went to his first reconciliation at church, the boys picked up their room, i cleaned the downstairs bathroom, we all watched some football, and then took the boys to barnes and noble as a treat for helping us so much today. :) whoo-hoo!

thank you, Lord, for this wonderful day.

Friday, January 7, 2011

walking across america

i found a neat website that will walk you across america. it is my user number is 63754. come join me!


Thursday, January 6, 2011

10 things that make me smile

1. a roaring fire in the fireplace
2. reading a book that i have been anxiously waiting for
3. caramel apple spice from starbucks
4. the puppy dog laying across my feet
5. a surprise call from bfp saying he loves me
6. scrapbooking a new page
7. the color turquoise
8. lilacs blooming in spring
9. raspberries
10. sparkling kitchen countertops

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

early morning send-off

this morning i got up with bfp and made him breakfast before he left for work. he commented that he wished i did that more often, so i am going to try. :) i love and appreciate him and this is one way that i can show it.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


today is the first day that i didn't wake up with the death of my dad the first thing on my mind. in fact, i was talking to someone on the phone and i actually forgot the exact date that he died. at first, i felt relief because i was moving past the grief; then i felt guilty for forgetting a date that is so important to me. now i am worried that i will start forgetting more and more about him until he is just a wisp of a thought in my mind.

mister memory come to remind me,
be my steadfast witness.
memorize precious moments in my mind,
display my recollections there for always.

Monday, January 3, 2011


Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. ~Colossians 3:15-17

The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him. ~Psalm 28:7

Let those who love the Lord hate evil, for he guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Light shines on the righteous and joy on the upright in heart. ~Psalm 97:10-11

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. ~Proverbs 19:21

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen. ~2 Peter 3:18

Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. ~James 3:13

Sunday, January 2, 2011


my mission statement is to serve the Lord with gratitude, strength, joy, purpose, grace and wisdom.

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. ~Melody Beattie

Strength is a matter of the made-up mind. ~John Beecher

Now and then it is good to pause in our pursuit of joy and just be joyful. ~Anonymous

Service is the rent we pay to be living. It is the very purpose of life and not something you do in your spare time. ~Marian Wright Edelman

Grace comes into the soul, as the morning sun into the world; first a dawning, then a light; and at last the sun in his full and excellent brightness. ~Thomas Adams

Wisdom, among other things, is the ability to devise perfect ends and to achieve those ends by the most perfect means....All God's acts are done in perfect wisdom, first for His own glory, and then for the highest good of the greatest number for the longest time. And all His acts are as pure as they are wise, and as good as they are wise and pure. Not only could His acts not be better done: a better way to do them could not be imagined. ~A. W. Tozer

Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It's the courage to continue that counts. ~Winston Churchill

**what quotes do you find inspirational? do you use quotes as a mantra to keep yourself on track? where do you find your favorite quotes?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

starting the year off right

last year's resolutions are here. some of this year's resolutions may seem familiar. i was successful completing most of them, but they don't feel like a habit yet so i will be repeating them.

1.) read one chapter of the new testament each weekday
2.) teach my children to pray more deliberately, and pray more purposefully for my children
3.) continue to spend 30 minutes a day PLAYING with my kids (board games, card games, wii, outside) and read to them before bed
4.) make time for my vanity everyday, including using a face moisturizer, wearing mascara and exercising at least 20 minutes
5.) call my brother and sister once a week, leaving a message for them counts
6.) write a letter (or card) once a month and MAIL it to my grandpa
7.) run (without walking) a 15k with my friend nicole on march 27
8.) make 2 nights a week be meatless meals by may 30
9.) finish painting the dining room (with new wainscoting) by july 30
10.) take a 'girl's vacation' with just my mom, sister and sister-in-law by september 30
11.) be pregnant or start adoption process by november 1
12.) clean off my kitchen counters every night before bed

**what are your new year's resolutions?
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