Sunday, April 29, 2012

{grace and peace}


  My mind is whirling as I look over the calendar for the weeks ahead.

 Just the reminders penciled in for tomorrow alone are enough
 to sink me far below the crashing waves of busyness. 
Just one day, but it's filled to the brim with activity.



Some routine, many extras.
I know that when I awaken, in those moments before full awareness,
 before it all comes crashing in,
I must seek Him first.
I must.
The first prayer of my day is thanksgiving.
{always}
Even when pain or nausea assails.
Even when stress pulls and strains.
Even when the night is insufficient to regain my strength.
I will take the time to breath.
{thanksgiving}

Lamentations 3:22-24
It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, 
because his compassions fail not.
 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
 The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.

Remembering the LORD, His unchanging character, His faithfulness, His love for me.
Remembering the hope I have because He is my portion.

Then spilling out come words of joy.
All my blessings line up to be remembered and there are so very many.
  •  the privilege to pray 
  • The Word
  • husband, children, father, mother, sister
  • crazy family love
  •  friends who build into my life so richly
  • forgiveness
  •  grace given and received
  • enough and more
  • living, breathing, moving - even slowly
  • another day
 Before I swing my legs over the side of the bed and greet the day,
 stumbling with sleep filled eyes to make the fresh start before me.



I will reach out for grace and peace.
Inseparable blessings.

{grace and peace}

*repetition is God's volume control*

Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ,
Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

{Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:3; 2 Corinthians 1:2; Galatians 1:3; Ephesians 1:2;
 Philippians1:2; Colossians1:2; 1 Thessalonians1:1; 2 Thessalonians 1:2}

{grace and peace} 


Matthew 6:33-34
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
and all these things shall be added unto you.
Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.


{grace and peace} 
What robs you of your peace most often?
A jam packed schedule, lack of time spent with God, a cluttered home,
 discordant relationships, unmet expectations, discontent,
filling up longings with things that don't satisfy?
Let's seek Him first together.

blessings,



Monday, April 16, 2012

25 Things for Monday



 I am following Lisa's lead at The Pennington Point and posting a crazy list of 25 things that are on my mind today!  I feel very random, so buckle your seat belt because I'm not sure where we are heading ...

1. I love having Monday morning 'off', but the rest of the day can be pretty crazy.  My husband goes in to work after lunch on Monday so he takes part of the morning to teach History.  I organize my week, start laundry and sometimes run errands, but I have to remember to save some energy because we have piano, baseball and ballet on Mondays.  Whew!

2. Today it is so incredibly windy that I dared not put the laundry out to dry ... I was worried about the shaggy mares in the field behind us finding their pristine pasture littered with our clean unmentionables!

3. I desperately need a warm and windless day to paint - the wicker porch furniture needs a fresh coat and so do the free cabinets I hope to hang in the playroom to make a crafty nook for the children. If I don't get one soon, I am going to try to construct a cheap 'clean room' paint booth in the driveway.



4. I won another recipe contest - the  Get Ready Emergency Stockpile Recipe Contest - the prize is awesome!  I can't wait to receive my Emergency Preparedness Kit from the American Red Cross! I used to carry a roll of duct tape in my purse, but in trying to lighten the load I removed it. It's amazing how often I reach for it and it isn't there!


5. The kids had way too much fun doing history with The Historian this morning!  Giggling and laughter aren't supposed to be part of a serious history class, are they? I plan to have them go over their notes again and see what they really learned!
 
6. My hot rollers are my good friends right now.  I saw some recent pictures of myself and decided that curls are more flattering.  I am happy to report that my hair is thickening up a bit after falling out by the handful in December and January, but it is pretty lackluster.  Leaving the hot rollers in too long is not a good thing, and answering the door with them in is just plain humiliating.  Our poor mail carrier didn't know what to say ...


7. Wind + Curls = Medusa Mama


8. There is nothing more beautiful than the giggles of a 14 year old girl. Even when she's laughing at your wild hair after a walk!

9. I hobbled around all weekend because of huge splits in my heels and toes.  Ouch! I've got dry feet in the genes, dry feet due to hypothyroidism and I wear sandals.  You think I might remember to baby my feet a bit before these painful cracks happen, but I don't.  The Historian spent a lot of time rubbing cream into the cracks, so I'm hobbling less today.





10. It is so helpful that our Storyteller likes peanut butter this year.  So helpful. Thank you to author Rick Riordan and his loveable peanut butter loving cyclops Tyson.  Making pre-practice snacks when I don't have a lot of leftovers on hand is sooooo much easier!


11. Last week as we were discussing the problems with the new health care plan Storyteller declared ' I would rather face a firing squad than be forced to abort a baby if I were a doctor in America.' I am praying his words are not prophetic.


12. Am I really only half way there with this list? Um. Well okay. Half is good. 





13. We don't live in a fishbowl any longer. Our new neighbours had a new 5' white vinyl fence erected between their driveway and our back patio on Friday. It replaces the 40 year old cedar hedge that they removed in the fall.  I really appreciate having our privacy back, but I still hate plastic fences. We will get used to it and I love the idea of zero maintenance.


14. I desperately miss the humming birds that lived in the cedars. Do you think they will ever come back?


15. I miss having a 'cookie' path between our home and the neighbour's - though we will continue to send cookies their way since they are greatly appreciated.


16. My sermons notes from yesterday are very sketchy - we studied one verse, or rather the first 1/2 of one verse. Galatians 4:4 "But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,".  I learned so much about the 'fullness' of time that I didn't know.  We were all over our Bibles defining it and digging deeper into all Christ was made to be for us - flesh, sin, a quickening spirit, wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption.

Home Baked Comfort (Williams-Sonoma): Featuring Mouthwatering Recipes and Tales of the Sweet Life with Favorites from Bakers Across the Country

17. I borrowed this cookbook from the library and fell hard for all the great recipes it contains.  The Historian spoiled me and ordered it and now I am happily baking my way from cover to cover!  We have the Adult Sunday school class breakfast for 40 this coming Sunday and I hope to make a few new things from this book to share!

18. I have an upholstery job to do this week - 6 dining room chairs.  They are super simple and I am hoping they go well, but I know it's the tearing off of the old covers that will take the most time. I always get stuck by a wayward staple or two ... or ten.

19. I am not looking forward to grocery shopping tonight because I am already running out of energy. Maybe if I reward myself with a quick trip to the garden center ...

20. Dreamer is all too attached to her new keyboard.  It was a very unexpected blessing last week and she is thrilled beyond thrilled! She is still practicing for hours on end for her examination on April 28th.  She now has all 15 Bach pieces but is shaky on the last 3.  She has worked incredibly hard, but three weeks of a nasty infection really set her back. I am praying she will be ready.


21. I have never seen a finer crop of dandelions than ours. I am not proud of them, I'm just saying - we have the nicest batch on the block. Perhaps the only batch ...



22. My herb garden is flourishing and is wildly out of control.  I have to share some with friends or expand the garden ... soon.

23. My dear friend and former dorm-mate June and her husband are coming for a visit next week.  We have not seen one another in 4 or 5 years and I am super excited.  At the same time I wish I was further along on my spring painting project list.

24. I wore a summer skirt on Sunday that has not fit in more than a year - it has elastic at the back and was uncomfortably tight but now it fit. Yeah!

25. Whew!  I'm at the end of the list at last. That was harder than I thought it would be! Thanks for reading to the end!

blessings,


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Sunday, April 1, 2012

{unless}




It's Palm Sunday on our calendar - the celebration we call Easter is just a week away.
{already}
Where did March go? 


Spring is fully upon us and there is just so much to do!  
Perhaps your thoughts have traveled with mine this week ... 
 
We'll get through Easter and then we can get on with 
yard projects, planting the garden, house projects, play performances, field trips, evaluations, school work, spring recitals, kid's sports, ballet performance,
company coming, and travel plans.
We are steadily, prayerfully filling up our days, penciling it all in.
Good things, all.

This week we have a pause in the everyday schedule.
A purposeful time of reflection.
A time for drinking in Truth like the thirsty ground drinks in spring rains.

{Resurrection Sunday}

The story of the eternal God of all who was wrapped in lowly humanity to be born in a stable 
and die on a cross to pay for the sin of mankind.
The One whose body was laid in a tomb for three actual days.
Cold, lifeless, damp and earthy.
Not the end - just a beginning.
The Saviour who defeated death resolutely.
Rose from that stinking grave.
Triumphant!
Lives today in heaven and is seated on at the right hand of His Father God.

{for me}
 and
{for you} 

This week I simply want to have my eyes wide open and my heart prepared.
I want to really see and hear.

I don't want our resurrection celebration
to rush by in a busy blur.



We've taken this week off from homeschool because I need it.
I don't have time to take a break really.
In some ways I feel so behind.
With schoolwork, with the house, with life ...

I need this because I am tired.
I need to be refreshed.
I need to rest, read, pray.
 I need a week without 5th grade mathematics.
But I know myself too well.
I have an endless to-do list.
I WILL fill this week with cleaning, shopping, decorating, gardening, 
sewing, baking and planning.

I WILL close my eyes in exhaustion each night only to 
wrestle with the long list of things left undone in my sleep.


{unless}

In the midst of cleaning our home, I cleanse my heart.
 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; 
and take not thy holy spirit from me.
Psalm 51:9-11 

{unless} 

In the midst of preparing menus and baking treats, 
I feast on the Living Word.
But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, 
but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God
Matthew 4:4

{unless}

In the midst of preparing a room for dear guests, I prepare my heart.
Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, 
and bring forth fruit with patience. 
Luke 8:11,15 

{unless}

 In the midst of tucking in new plants and pinching off the spent blooms,
 I renew my mind with right thinking.
  That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
Ephesians 4:22-24 

{unless} 

In the midst of tears flowing freely 
as I stand to sing with the congregation,
I worship freely, 
eyes wide in wonder ... a humble heart prepared.
  
Will you take some time with me this week to really get ready for Easter?

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