Tuesday, August 28, 2007

She's Riding the Bus

Em has been begging me for years to let her ride the bus. Well, this year she gets to. Okay, well, not entirely but KINDA...

I have almost always been a working mom. Most of my life was as a part timer, and there was a period of time when I was a stay-at-home-mom when the girls were very small. It took my husband a while to get used to the idea that I wanted to be a working woman because he always wanted a wife who would be home. We worked on that for a few years, and finally came to a place where we are comfortable with what we have. I don't say that in a prideful way, really I don't. And I don't want to paint a picture that I have gone against my husband and worked either. I have always had a job that is flexible and my kids have always been first. But, some things in my personality just work better when I work and God has truly worked out my working envirnment perfectly. Right now, I actually work two jobs. It's hard to admit that at times to people, because they often think that it is our greedy selfishness that causes us to make these choices. But, it isn't. Truly. Part of my week is spent at my husband's father's family business doing the books. A small company, at this time they only need me a couple days a week. The other part of my time, I work at my church, which I love and adore. The people I work with are very talented love God with everything in them, and I count it a blessing to be able to do what I do.

Anyway, working isn't the topic of this! the BUS!

Our jobs are very flexible. We are able to pick the kids up from school easily and either bring them with us or take them home to kill each other. (did I just say that out loud?)

But, Abbie is in HS now and her school is only two blocks from our house. And Emily wants to ride the bus!

So, we made arrangementsn for her to ride the bus from her school to Abb's school, then go home with Abbie. She is sooooooooooo excited.

I went through the whole "what is she going to learn on the bus?" "what if she sees something she shouldn't?" "what if she hears something she doesn't know is a naughty word and tries to repeat it?"

But, the bus ride is only probably about 5 minutes, and she promised she would sit with a girl her own age!

Now, let's just hope her sister doesn't forget she's there.

Jitzu's New Adventure

We only waited for about a week to recieve the letter. And it came.

Dear Lindsey,

We didn't need to read any more really. That said it all.

She applied in January. Well, I take that back. She began the application process in January. But, then she wasn't sure that it was the right thing for her. She wasn't completely sure that she was supposed to go. So, she set it aside and waited. I'm proud of her for that. Waiting is sometimes a hard thing to do.

Psalms 25:1-5 To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in You; Let me not be ashamed; Let not my enemies triumph over me. Indeed, let no one who waits on You be ashamed; Let those be ashamed who deal treacherously without cause. Show me Your ways, O LORD; Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; On You I wait all the day.

...You have been accepted to ....

accepted: v. to admit to a group, organization, or place.

She only had two more steps to complete the application. She had to write a 200 word testimony and pay a $30 registration fee. She went to camp this summer and when she came back from camp, we were in the kitchen talking and she casually said "when someone says write a testimony what do they usually mean?". I explained, and she agreed then I said "why do you ask?" ...

Her testimony was 400 words and then she finally just stopped. She had sent it in that morning along with her fee. She wanted to do it on her own. The waiting was over, and she had made a decision.

...let me be the first to congratulate you...

Why do they get to be first?? The letter should have read "run to your parents and let them congratulate you! They are your cheerleaders and have been cheering you on for 18 years! " But, they were first. Shawn was second. He told her (in his best Pedro style) that he would build her a cake or somethin to celebrate. Here is the cake. He did it all on his own. Decorated and all. I'm pretty sure it's the only cake he's ever decorated in his life. And when you cut the cake open, he even put food coloring in the batter to give it a purple color. Her favorite color is blue, but we didn't have any blue food coloring, so purple is the next best thing I guess! oh, and yes, it's a heart-shape.

... will surely be the best 9 months of your life!

I have no doubt about that part. God is in it. I know He is. 9 months of discipleship training. Disciples - more than students, more than just believers. They are individuals who are determined to become people who live life as Jesus did. A full life. A life that is deep and rich and rewarding. A 5000 seat santuary, a 1500 seat auditorium, an 800 seat amphitheater, a private Christian K-12 school, a daycare center, offices, are just part of the things that make up the campus she will live on for the next 9 months. It's not your average university by any means, but I have a feeling it will become home to her in a lot of ways.

...send in your $300 deposit, and choose your payment plan...

Swallow hard now. There is always a downside to acceptances when you're 18. Well, downside for parents anyways. :) Since it's a discipleship training school, and not a university, there are no student loans, no grants, no nothing. Just pay it. And yet, knowing all that, I have a peace. I have no idea where the money will come from. But, I do know that God brought her this far, and He will meet her needs.

On September 15, she moves in. We're so excited and proud and nervous and thrilled and scared all at the same time. She's determined to walk through whatever door God opens for her, and I canNOT wait to see His vision for her life.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

so what's up?

Okay, I shave my head and sit silently at my computer and nobody believes it's really me! What's up with that? I think it's the silent part you don't believe.

Okay okay... I admit, I have plenty to say. I know this may come as a surprise to you, but there are SOME things in this world that I do NOT have an opinion on. really. there are.

One, for example, is , well, whatever that's a dumb thing to write a whole blog on anyway.

Forget that. Here's some other news...
* You already know that school is in session. Many of you are living it. It's a strange mix... somewhere between glad you once again have a routine, and sad that you (once again) have a routine.

* Lindsey has a new adventure! I'll post the pics and my next blog entry just for her!

* Em is in 3rd Grade and super stoked because at church, they combine the grades like 1-2, 3-4, 5-6 - and she got to move UP a grade and be with PJ her 4th Grade friend! Whoo Hooo!

* Abbie had a radical stay up all night watch movies sit in the hot tub play high school musical board game sing songs dance around make a video play with sidewalk chalk tell scary stories and eat junk food until you are sickly slumber party. It lasted 24 hours. Doesn't that just make you wanna be 15 again? I wanted to join her and she wouldn't let me. So I popped in every now and then and busted a move and listened to the giggling. Such a great group of girls. I love them all.

* Haleigh is in a wedding next weekend. The first of her high school friends is getting married. She's excited and happy for them, and it's going to be a fun weekend.

* Shawn and I are catching up on all the past episodes of the OFFICE. He got the files from a friend and we sit silently in bed each night at 12:30, 1:00, 1:30 trying to watch "just one more episode" - crammed together on the bed watching them on his laptop with a speaker that is barely audible except in the still of the night getting kinks and cramps in our necks. yeah, we really don't need another thing to waste time in, but it's brainless fun to do. It just goes to show you how desperate we are to watch tv sometimes since we opted not to get cable or even hook up our tv since last November. (I did cave in last week and plug in a little 13" one we have just to watch the news on a local station with rabbit ears.... you have to hold it just "so" in order for it to be viewable).

After reading all these past few posts, I really do have some seriousness in my life. I have been doing my devotions every day and loving them! I have also started reading through the Beth Moore A woman's Heart God's Dwelling place Bible study that I will lead this fall for our church ladies evening group.

Need encouaragement today? Do what I did... read Hebrews 12. Keep your eyes on Jesus.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

the cops came

I like catchy titles. Ones that say "hey... what's this blog about today?" Ones that say "Who? What? The cops came? I HAVE to read that"...

So, that's why I titled this entry that way.

But, really, the cops did come. Not to my house. My sisters. It's actually a quite amusing story. My nephew is somewhat of a fascinating 11 year old. My sister is a single mom, and she just really doesn't always know what to expect next. Living on a very limited income, there isn't always extra money to spend on impractical things. So, my nephew has gotten pretty clever about finding resourceful ways to create an income for himself. It isn't unusual for him to offer to pull weeds for $15 or scoop the deck of snow in the winter for $10 each. It gets a little expensive to hire him, and Shawn calls it robbery (although he still pays it) .. but we've had to negotiate quite a bit in order to afford to help him out. Especially since we have to usually go back and do the job ourselves after he's "completed".

So, my insurance agent called me yesterday to offer me a deal of the century. And he just happens to be a neighbor of my sister. Is this gossip? My insurance agent said that my sister said that my nephew.... ?

Okay, nevermind that... it's just another twist on the story that I already knew.

Anyway, it seems my nephew heard about an animal shelter starting up in town and liked the idea. So, he decided the little town five miles away needs one too. So, he took his tin can and hit the streets to collect. My insurance agent's wife contributed to a very needy cause, seeing how she just rescued a goldfish from an untimely death and saved his life by giving him a home in a lovely bowl in her living room.

However, another neighbor nearby, didn't think it was quite as lofty an idea, and called the cops. So, a short while later, my sister sat with her son, a police officer, and a tin can between them. And he explained that while it wasn't really something that actually WAS happening, it was something that he WANTED to help happen.

The police officer took my nephew to all the neighbors and returned their contributions. My insurance agent was polite and took the money back - and then whispered to the police officer that "he really is a good kid". They exchanged a smile and a wink and called it a good lesson in life.

Incidentally, the agent is going to New York on a trip with his wife, and she couldn't see how rescuing a gold fish would be beneficial unless they made arrangements for care while they were gone,... so they hired my nephew to goldfish sit while they are gone. I informed him to be prepared to pay much more than the job is worth, and could I get the name of the place they got the goldfish so I could find a twin look alike before they get back if needed?

Monday, August 13, 2007

Happy Anniversary

I wish I had a scanner to scan in this picture of two very young and ready-to-take-on-the-world husband and wife.

We had no idea life would be this rewarding and this challenging all at the same time did we?

Happy 19th Anniversary Babe.

It's been fun!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

things that make me go "hmmmm"

Just a few unusual things that grab my attention:

1. The man who grabbed forty winks outside our office building - on the grass, bare-chested, using his tshirt as a cushion on which to lay his head, on his lunch break in the middle of the day.

2. The IRS employee who had a pleasant voice and eager willingness to assist me with my questions.

3. The neighbor's blind, old, decrepit dog who strolls up to our driveway each morning, barks at the sky (or an invisible cat?) and then hobbles away to defecate in the surrounding yards.

4. Our fruity feline who chases flies and eats them - Hakuna Matata!

5. husbands

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

too busy for God?

I have had a pretty relaxing and uneventful week thus far. My 3 older girls are gone to camp, and my husband is gone until Thursday out of town as well. So, it's just me and Em for a whole week.

I realized life isn't as busy with all those people and schedules around. More people in my home seems to = more activity. And more activity = busyness. It's logical of course. Makes perfect sense.

I read this article today. If you don't have time to read it, that's okay. I'll just tell you what it says.

Out of 22,009 Christians surveyed aged 15-88 spanning 139 countries, more than 4 in 10 Christians say they "often" or "alway" rush from task-to-task in life.

Busyness was the distraction from God found worldwide.

"Professionals whose busyness interferes with developing their relationship with God include lawyers (72 per cent), managers (67 per cent), nurses (66 per cent), pastors (65 per cent), teachers (64 per cent), salespeople (61 per cent), business owners (61 per cent), and housewives (57 per cent)."

Dr. Michael Zigarelli, a professor at a Charleston school of Business conducted the study and he suggests it is a cyclical cycle... you get busy, you get overloaded, God becomes more marginalized in your life, your relationship with the Almighty suffers, thus you become even more affected by your cultures ideas of busy life which leads to more conformity and busyness and overload.... and the cycle begins again.

Psalm 39:6 in the NLT says "All our busy rushing ends in nothing".

I'm mindful of this as we enter into August. School is just around the corner, as is fall calendars and a whirlwind of activity. I want my days to matter for God. All of them.