Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Short De-briefing and Other News


That's how I feel at the end of today. I'm tired!

As you know from my last post, I spent the weekend with David's sister in Florida. We were so blessed to attend a Simply Charlotte Mason conference. I could give you an extremely long synopsis of the weekend's experiences, the enlightening and encouraging moments, the confirmation that, as a family--both immediate and extended--we are going down the right path with our children, but then I'd be here all night long.

And I've got a date with a real estate Web site.

You read right. We're on the house-hunt again.

We've been sort of un-seriously looking for the past several weeks. What we're really trying to do is take advantage of the government's tax credit for first-time home buyers.

Can you say 'free money'?

We're not exactly first-timers, however it has been over three and a half years since the sale of our home, so that qualifies us as such.

Anyway, the long and the short of it is that our decision was, in a roundabout way, made for us at 6:45 this morning. It seemed we had just gone to bed, when I was awakened by abrupt knocking at our door.

My immediate reaction to sudden noises in the dead of night, or in this case, the dead of morning, has always been to yell-whisper at David while hitting him on the back, "David! Someone's at the door!"

So we both get up together to see what's going on.

A police officer stood there asking, "Are you the owners of a Hyundai minivan?"

"Yes," I said, very confused.

"I'm sorry to have to tell you that it's been broken into. I need you both to come downstairs to show me if anything's been stolen and to fill out a police report while I search for prints," he informed us.

CSI suddenly isn't so cool when it's happening to you.

The first thing David said was that he couldn't remember if he had brought his guitar into the house after church. So I immediately started panicking. I could handle anything, absolutely anything being taken from my husband but that one thing. It's his livelihood, his passion, his calling. Taking that away from him would be like taking air out of his lungs, and subsequently mine.

I threw on a robe, and Dave through on a t-shirt. As soon as I saw the shattered glass all over the driver's side of the pavement, I started losing my breath. I could think only of his guitar, and the thought of having to replace it made my stomach churn.

David also believed he had left his wallet in the door pocket of the van, and we both knew there was an old computer, monitor, and keyboard in the very back. As was his guitar.

Amazingly, the officer opened the back hatch, and David pulled out his guitar! We couldn't believe it. I started bawling out of sheer joy and thankfulness. The computer monitor and keyboard were still there, but the tower had been taken. David later found his wallet, not in the van, but in his own car, which happened to be unlocked all along! (Hope you've learned your lesson, Dear...)

To take the computer tower out of the van, the thieves would have had to lift David's guitar first. I am certain that God blinded their eyes to his guitar. He must have made it invisible or just simply made their eyes so that they couldn't see it. I am completely convinced.

All that said (plus several other incidents that have happened around our complex lately), we are totally at peace with moving out of our apartment.

Thus begins the house-hunting.

We are praying that God will open our eyes and hearts to the exact home He has for us. And we are praying that He orders our steps in such a way that we will come out of this process blessed all the way around, that when we find that house we will know that it is right, and above all that He will receive the glory for doing those things which we are incapable of doing on our own.

Won't you please pray with us and for us?

As always, we're so grateful!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Hoppin' On A Plane

I've been one uninspired blogger this week, in case you haven't noticed. Life has been going as usual; I just haven't had any one thing happen (other than the good Lord speaking to me in the middle of the night the other day) that was worth sharing with the world.

Sorry to disappoint.

I am leaving on a jet plane tomorrow and heading to the sunshine and 70-degree temperatures of Florida for the weekend! That's news!

My sis-in-law Amy and I are attending a homeschool conference in Jacksonville, and in between sessions, we're going to have as much girl time and eating time as humanly possible. This will be my first homeschool conference, and I'm really excited. Also, I'm a bit nervous, as I have no idea of what to expect.

Are there going to be a million books there, calling out my name to buy them?

Will I be the only mom wearing makeup and jeans?

Am I going to be the most unexperienced home educating mother there?

Will I have 2,368 questions and be too embarrassed to raise my hand and ask?

This is a big deal to me. I never, ever hop on a plane, leave the peeps with their daddy for four days, and traipse off to the East Coast.

In an effort to keep my presence as close to home as possible, I've planned a menu for the weekend and posted it on the fridge, cooked the meals on said menu and refrigerated them with labeled cooking directions, done all the laundry, posted a schedule on the fridge, posted my flight schedule on the fridge, baked two dozen muffins, and bought $147 worth of fruit so my children don't have to survive off of candy and peanut butter sandwiches.

Can you tell I don't get out much?

I also painted my toenails for the first time in 6 months.

You think I'm kidding?

As traveling goes, I probably won't be blogging much, especially since Amy is taking me to an Anthropologie store. I've never been, and I may "get lost" while I'm in there. So maybe I won't be blogging ever again.

You'll just have to wait and see.

So long,

P.S. Our conference is being put on by the folks at Simply Charlotte Mason. Click on the link to see what we'll be learning!

Monday, March 22, 2010

My Thoughts On...Aging


It's a dirty, five-letter a-word.

Or so it is to most people.

I am one of the few who can say the word and not cringe. I hope there are more of us out there.

I have never been one to buy expensive cosmetics or the latest and greatest eye creams or lip-plumping gels or eyelash elongating drugs. It's just not me. All that stuff's too fussy for me. I like my face (and my drawers) to be clutter-free and clean.

Since my makeup-wearing days began, oh about 13 years ago when I was only allowed to wear clear mascara as I walked up the sidewalk to my first day of eighth grade, I can't think of one time when I worried about aging. Of course my skin has changed quite a bit since those early pubescent days of long ago, but my opinions on aging have not.

At any time during the last decade, you could look in my makeup box--it's actually a plastic Sterilite note card box--and you would find that no three cosmetics are the same brand. I have Mary Kay foundation, but only because it was free. I have never purchased a Mary Kay product in my life. I have Maybelline powder, Cover Girl mascara, and Rimmel liquid eye shadow. I also have a really funky gold eye shadow that I picked up at a Victoria's Secret sale, and I love it. I'm not even sure what brand of blush I use because, when my mom gave it to me a year ago, it was already missing its lid. I've had it in a Ziploc bag ever since.

As far as skin care things go, my selection would be disappointing to some. I use baby wipes to take my makeup off when I wear it, which isn't even every day. I use an apricot exfoliator in the shower once or twice a week. And that's it. No moisturizers, no anti-aging creams, no crow's feet eliminators.

It takes me about 4.75 minutes to put my face on ... an expression my Memaw uses that has always cracked me up. Anything more than five minutes for facial beauty is, to me, a gigantic waste of time.

I was thinking the other day. And while me thinking is a scary concept, I believe I may have discovered a truth.

I want to age gracefully. (And you said, "Well, duh, don't we all?") What I mean by that is that I want to age both physically and spiritually with grace and poise. I don't ever want to get to the point in my life when my face looks old but the wisdom I have to offer doesn't correspond with my age. In fact, if the truth were known, I want to age spiritually much more quickly than I want to age physically.

There are many older, but very beautiful women in my life whom I admire for the ways they've aged. My mother, my mother-in-law, both my husband's grandmothers. One of his grandmothers is in her eighties, and I think she's beautiful. His other grandmother is in her seventies, but you'd never know it by the way she goes and goes. She's beautiful too.

My mom and my mother-in-law are in their fifties, and they are who I want to be when I grow up. Yes, they have their wrinkles and gray hairs, but to me those things are proof of their experiences, proof that they are wise and knowledgeable, proof that they have grown in their faith and in their walks with Christ.

No face-lifts.

No Botox.

No anti-aging creams.

No expensive makeup.

The beauty products these women use are simple, un-cluttering. They are prayer and the Word of God.

That's it.

That's how I want to age.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The Answered Prayer

Good morning, world.

Here I am, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, at 5:32 a.m. I've been awake for the last hour, since David got up and decided to bump up the heater. There's several inches of snow on the ground, it's colder than a well-digger's rear end, and the wind's blowing like crazy, just in case you needed a Panhandle weather report.

(*Colder than a well-digger's rear end ... what exactly does that mean? Are there many wells dug in freezing cold weather? My dad used that expression all the time when I was growing up, except he used a choice euphemism in place of the words 'rear end'. He also had an expression for cold weather along the lines of a witch's bosom in a brass something or other... There's my childhood for ya.*)

Now that we've got that out of the way, back to my early morning wake-up.

If I'm not sleeping at any time during the night, it's usually for two reasons: a.) because I had a bad dream and I'm praying myself back to sleep; or b.) because my husband woke up to turn on the heater and I'm praying myself back to sleep.

Some of my best prayer times occur between the hours of 4:30 and 6:30 a.m. Maybe it's the uninterrupted silence? Or the desperation in my pleas as I beg God to help me go back to sleep? Either way, if I'm going to lie in bed awake, I might as well do something productive with my time. And I figure my chances of falling asleep are somewhat greater if I stay horizontal with my eyes closed and pray than if I get up and unload the dishwasher.

Anyway, David and I have been praying some serious prayers over the last several weeks, particularly in the last few days. We're asking and believing for a few things that, if God finds favor with us and answers, will be no less than miraculous.

So, I'm lying awake, praying, laying my heart out there for the Lord, asking for my heart's desires. Nothing amazing happened, no voices from heaven or anything like that, but like a penny dropping into a fountain, John 14 dropped into my heart.

I tried shrugging it off, thinking maybe my mind was just making things up. After all, it is 5-something in the morning. But when I couldn't shake it, I got up to read what John 14 has to say. For the record I'd just like to state that I tried remembering what was in John 14, and couldn't for the life of me.

Instead of starting at the beginning of the chapter like I normally would, my eyes were immediately directed to some of my own underlining. The passage was titled "The Answered Prayer":
"Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it" (John 14:12-14, emphasis mine).
Did you ever notice that Jesus repeats Himself in this passage? He must really want to get the point across that whatever we ask in His name, He will do it.

After days of praying and hearing nada, I get a word from the Lord! Not many things excite me at 5:30 in the morning, but that right there'll do it!

Now if that doesn't give me something to stand on when I'm praying like crazy, I don't know what will.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Ryan & His Kazoo

This is Ryan and his kazoo. He stood on our balcony playing his kazoo whilst 12 or 15 other kids played basketball below.

Was he playing their school's fight song?


Was he blowing cheers for his favorite team?


Dressed in his Buzz Lightyear pj's, he was playing the theme song from Little House on the Prairie on his kazoo.

I can just hear the other kids' parents down below:

"Who is that kid?"
"Do you hear what he's playing?"
"Are those Buzz Lightyear pajamas?"

And then another onlooker, most likely our neighbor, would say, "Oh he's that weird homeschooled kid who lives across from me."

And then everyone would go back to watching their own kids play basketball.

Of course, that's totally not what happened. It's fun to speculate on others' perceptions of our family's weirdness though.

Right after the Little House theme, he made a very smooth transition into The Old Rugged Cross.

I think it's pretty stinkin' cute.

Picture Study: Monet-Week 5

Wheat Field by Claude Monet, 1881

What a beautifully peaceful scene this is.

Instead of having school today, we enjoyed the outdoors. The kids will have their first look at this one tomorrow morning.

Hope you enjoy!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Girls, Pasta & Thrift Stores

Today was an awesome day.

I was so excited to have my sister-in-law, Shanna, and one of our mutual friends, Lissa Anglin, over for a super-chick lunch. You know, the kind where no husbands are allowed because the conversation and the food are way too girly. And, to tell you the truth, our husbands would've been totally bored. We talked about everything from music to art to decorating to homeschooling. It was so refreshing for me to be around girls who share similar interests.

Shanna and Lissa happened to be in town for a wedding shower over the weekend, and they stopped by for lunch on their way back to Lubbock. They took me up on my universal invite to have Pioneer Woman's Baked Lemon Pasta. We may have had Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes for dessert.

With homemade whipped cream.

After lunch, I left my kiddos with Daddy, and the girls and I headed down to 6th Street to do some browsing in the thrift and antique stores. And yes, we trekked out in the rain and 40-degree weather. It was totally worth it!

I found the coolest, most unexpected thing while we were in the very last shop. It just so happens that during lunch, I was telling Shanna and Lissa how much I needed a bookshelf for all our homeschool books. Let me tell you, my book situation was getting desperately out of control. Just any shelf wouldn't do either. I wanted the shelf to have square spaces and a back on it. It also had to be just the right size because space is quite limited in my 989 square feet. My totally awesome find was this shelf:

It's the perfect Tiffany box blue and matches my decor perfectly. It's got square spaces and a back on it. It's got so much character and it's got just the right amount of shabby-chic. I LOVE it. Who knew?

And it was $50. Best $50 I ever spent.

Shanna and Lissa, thank you so much for coming by today! I had a blast!

P.S. Lissa is a fabulous photographer, and you'd really be missing out if you didn't stop by her site and browse through her work.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Garlic Breath

Last week, I fulfilled a lifelong desire.

I found these glass spice jars at World Market for $.99 each.

I've always wanted a well-organized spice cabinet, and these practical jars screamed organization. I purchased 16 spice jars and a packet of spice labels. I was one happy camper that night when I came home and dumped out all my mismatched plastic bottles of spices and transferred their contents into my new glass jars. Putting the labels on sealed the deal for me.

Because I lack the proper shelving space in my kitchen, I've had the jars stacked two-high and in rows of four. I've been extra careful and haven't knocked one down yet.

Until today.

Without looking, I reached to put my bottle of olive oil away. Well, I ended up knocking down the garlic powder. Of course it hit my granite counter top and shattered instantly. Garlic powder was eve.ry.where. My husband was helping me clean up the kitchen when this happened, so we had the mess cleaned up in less than three minutes.

Now my entire house smells like garlic powder. That's my problem.

I can't get the smell to go away.

Even the granite still smells like garlic powder, despite using two different cleaners to remove the smell.

I've burned candles, opened window and doors, left the house for a little while...and it's no better.

Please, please, please, if you have a way of getting rid of odors--help me!

I can't stand a stinky house, and this is almost too much to handle. I'm desperate here, so make your suggestions known pronto.


Ryan began an introduction to grammar last week. Our lesson book is called English for the Thoughtful Child by Mary F. Hyde. It is a very gentle approach to teaching the abstract concepts of the sentence, composition, punctuation, and narration.

Ryan completed lesson two with ease today. The second half of the lesson instructed him to compose five statements about the sun. Thankfully, Ryan has been writing letters for a couple of months now, so he's not unfamiliar with putting his original thoughts to paper. Today, he learned the 'how' of putting his thoughts down ... that a statement tells something, that a statement must always begin with a capital letter, that a statement ends with a period.

Hard at work, the third statement he was to write was supposed to tell which direction the sun moves across the sky. His sentence: "The sun comes back up." Logically...

The last two sentences were supposed to be about two things the sun gives us. Without a thought, he immediately wrote, "The sun gives us light." But then, he had to think about what else the sun gives us. He kept whispering to himself, "Think, think, think." I helped him remember that the sun keeps us warm, so he wrote, "The sun gives us warm."

I knew it would confuse him to no end if I tried to explain that 'warm' is an adjective, and what he needed at the end of that sentence was the noun, 'warmth'. Instead, I simply told him to add 'th' to the end of 'warm'. We'll get to parts of speech in a few years.

The finished product! (By the way, it was his idea to end his composition with "Love Ryan". Ha!)

And one pretty proud grammar student!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bedtime Picnic

"Spread the blanket out straight, Momma," she said. "I want to have a picnic! Can we have a picnic with real food?"

"Sure, baby, how about after you take your shower?"

"Ok!" she exclaimed with glee.

From the shower, he called, "Can I have a picnic too?"

I had to think a minute to figure out what 'real food' I was going to use for our picnic. We don't keep much snack food in our house.

So I came up with it: Ritz crackers, spread with peanut butter and topped with chocolate chips.

It lasted all of five minutes, and they were as happy as a fox in a hen house.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Pretty Proud of Myself

Well, in case you didn't notice, I've changed things up around here again. In less than a week, I've had three different blog designs.

That seems so unprofessional. (Can a blogger who is largely unknown and certainly unpaid be unprofessional? Just sayin'.)

I'm really excited about this one though because it's the most customized. I'm also really proud because I did the header all by myself. That's right. The Husband was gone to a remote location with no cell service, so I was forced to suck it up and be a big girl in Photoshop.

Ok, so it wasn't really Photoshop. It was a pretty cool site called FotoFlexer. I even watched a fun little online tutorial because I'm what they call "layer-challenged." In laymen's terms, that means I'm clueless when it comes to graphic design.

Well, not totally clueless; I know how things are supposed to look and I know a CS4 Suite comes in handy to get 'em looking that way. I just don't know how to get 'em there.

Anyway, I'm proud of my 35 minutes' worth of work. This is one small step in graphic design; one giant leap for Lindsey. Maybe it's not that huge, but I'm feeling pretty accomplished.

I especially like my little birdie up there. He's so cute and spring-y perched by his birdhouse.

I hope you like it too.

Ain't no way I'm re-doing it. At least for a while.

A Perfect Combination

Pajama-clad, I did not want to get out at 10:00 last night to make a run to the store for milk. My Husband, whom I never send to the store for anything because he always brings back 27 things we don't need, graciously volunteered to go.

He did come back with milk. And, not surprisingly, he came back with a few other things too.

A bouquet of tulips.

Bright, sweet, pink tulips. Tulips quench my thirst for spring. Pink forces a smile to my lips. Mixed with the chartreuse pom-poms I already had, it is the perfect combination of color.

He is green: calm, cooling, collected, serene. I am pink: deep, passionate, flamboyant.

He is my perfect counterpart. He knows what makes me tick, and pink tulips make my heart go wild. I'm wildly crazy about him.

For once, I'm glad he didn't just make it home with the milk.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Quite An Accomplishment

Out of nowhere this afternoon, I had a bright idea.

"Hey Ryan," I said. "Guess what? We're going to take the training wheels off your bike today!"

"Uhhhh," said he. "No. I don't want to."

"Aw, come on, you can do it. You're six now. Six-year-olds can do anything!" In case you didn't know, once a boy turns six, he's faster, stronger, cuter, and able to do all the things he couldn't do when he was still five.

Addie was all about taking the training wheels off. "Ok!" she cried with glee. That child has no fear.

Alright, let's do this thing.

This is our pre-ride pep talk. I think I said something inspiring like, "Ok, Buddy, you can do this. If you fall down, it won't hurt because you have these pads on. Don't be scared. You can do this! Alright? Let's go."

That's the stuff great motivational speeches are made of.

And, I kid you not, he got it on the first try. That's my boy!

I love that my husband shot this. I also love that I naturally do Spirit Fingers in celebration of Ryan's accomplishment.

While Ryan and I worked on his take off, Daddy and Addilyn were just beginning. Remember that "no fear" thing she had earlier?

"Daddy, don't let go!" she wailed.

In record time, those training wheels were back on, and she was happy as a pig in the mud.

Hello, Cutie.

Meanwhile, Ryan was doing this:

And he's off!

Son, I'm awfully sorry that your debut as a two-wheeled bike rider involves a Barbie helmet. I'm really, really sorry. I hope someday we can put this behind us.

David soon took over as Head Bike Instructor. Daddies are good at those things. This momma was getting a little impatient with Ryan's inability to turn.

Learning how to turn proved more difficult than learning to ride with no training wheels.

So did getting started on his own.

Don't judge. It was his first day.

He did end up in the grass a lot.

Ryan, sad because he can't figure out how to turn that stinkin' bicycle.

Or maybe he was upset about the Barbie helmet. Hey, in my defense, I tried calling his grandmother so she could bring his cool Spiderman helmet to us. She just didn't answer.

While Ryan pouted, Addie was still in her own little world.

In case you can't tell, the purpose of this picture is because "Look Mommy! I can ride with one foot!"

We're so proud of our Ry-Guy for his accomplishment today. And we're proud of our Addie Girl for trying.

"Eat my dust, world."

Picture Study: Monet-Week 4

Poppy Field by Claude Monet, 1891

I'll tell you what I love about picture studies. They're so simple. You're studying famous works of art, trying to memorize details in your mind's eye, and there's nothing to it. Sure, it's not easy to remember every little detail after looking over a picture for three or four minutes; but the more you look at it, the easier it becomes.

Ryan and Addilyn really enjoyed this picture study. Of course, we have loved everything we've looked at by Monet, so it's not surprising that this one was no different. As soon as I opened our art book to this painting, Ryan immediately exclaimed, "Is that Claude Monet's yard?!" He also gave a very dramatic description of the "really, really tall trees and the big mountain and the blue sky!". Addilyn, as usual, was focused on the "beautiful red flowers and green grass."

As part of our learning about Monet and Impressionism, we also read Katie Meets the Impressionists. It was a wonderful story about Katie, a little girl visiting an art museum. Hunting for flowers for her Grandma's birthday, she is able to jump in and out of paintings by Monet, Renoir, and Degas. It was a fun read!

I'm just sad we only have two Monet paintings left.

Monday, March 8, 2010

It's The Little Things

You may find this hard to believe, but my husband and I have lived without a printer for our entire married life. (Married life = 7.45 years)

We have always had the need for one, but the need was never great enough to go out and buy one. After all, printers ain't cheap. Correction: printers are cheap; toner/ink ain't.

So we've done without.

Several months ago, David stumbled upon a local company who had been bought out by a larger, non-local company. He was walking in the parking lot, and lo and behold, right there out in the open, next to the Dumpster, was a printer. How horrible for that to go filling up a landfill, thought my environmentally conscious husband. So he did his part by "recycling" this printer and bringing it home. And not just any printer either. It was a Dell Laser Jet printer, which means nothing to me. All I know is the thing was very big, and David said it was a really nice black and white printer. Turns out, after disassembling it, it needed a few parts and pieces in addition to a new toner cartridge. We decided the expense wasn't worth it, and the printer was boxed up and put into storage.

David does a lot of computer work for his mom, who runs a benevolence ministry. Several weeks ago, she surprised us by paying David for his services. The payment? A printer. An HP Deskjet Color printer! And she gave us extra ink cartridges to boot!

I printed out a recipe about five minutes ago, and David eyed me from the couch.

"You're enjoying that printer, huh?"

"Yep!" I said. "I don't even use it everyday, but just knowing I could makes me really happy."

And then I grinned.

And that pretty much sums up how thankful a person is for something as simple as a printer when they've gone so long without one. Thankful enough to write about it.

May we all be thankful for the little things today.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

What I Really Want

Is this.

PW's Baked Lemon Pasta. I've made it twice before, and it was a hit with everyone.

Everyone, except my husband.

And now I want it again. And I can't have it. Because what is the point of cooking a pound of spaghetti and using two cups of sour cream just for yourself?

I rest my case.

Any girls out there want to come over for lunch, say next week, so I can make this for us?


Friday, March 5, 2010

Blogs From History: Post 10

I remember writing this blog post like it was yesterday. It makes me sad because this post reminds me that it's been two years since I've seen my beautiful, wonderful, Danish friend Karina. I miss her so much. Her and her husband Klaus, and their two boys Frederik and Matias changed our lives and made our first few months in the Big D not only bearable, but amazing. The date of this post: February 17, 2008. The title: "Pretty Sure It Wasn't Decaf". Read on; it'll make sense.

Well, here it is, 11:20 p.m., and I'm just NOT tired! After all the cleaning and organizing I've done this weekend, I should be sleepy, but I'm not. We picked up our bestest friends from Denmark at the airport today. On our way home, we stopped by Starbucks (Karina got addicted to Starbucks when they were here in the U.S., and if she wants one in Denmark, she has to go all the way to Copenhagen and buy one for $10 US there!!). I ordered my usual: grande, nonfat, decaf white chocolate mocha w/ peppermint and whipped cream (say that 5 times fast), but I think they must have given me a caffeinated one. I have convinced myself that getting a nonfat drink and then adding whipped cream will balance out the calories...whatever. So, Dave is sitting behind me trying to figure out uncharted chords on his guitar. Klaus & Karina are in their super-nice guest apartment snoozing their jet lag away. And here I sit on blogging, trying to get sleepy. Needless to say, it's not working very well.

On a happier note, I can't wait to hang out with our friends who have flown half-way around the world to come see us! Of course, they didn't come just for us, but I have convinced myself otherwise. Karina and I are shopaholics when we're together. So, I am ready to start our shopping (she will be buying; I won't). Nonetheless, I get to go shopping this week! I hope she gets some good rest because I'll be dragging her all over Dallas until they leave next Monday. Since I finished March's magazine last week, I even get to take off work this week! Woo-hoo!

Well, I think I'm going to take a Tylenol P.M. and hope it works better than blogging does. Nite-nite.

Karina, I love you and miss you!

I'm Inspired

I'm soon to begin sewing, I believe. I received a sewing machine recently, which lacks a bobbin cover. I'm just sure I'll have to specially order one. I received sewing lessons for Christmas from my husband's grandmother. Both his grandmothers are excellent seamstresses, so my resources are rich. And I discovered these books the other day which I feel I need a legitimate excuse to own. I could display them on my coffee table and be perfectly satisfied to look at them, however their content beckons the inner seamstress in me out.

I know she's there. I just know it.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Bye, Bye

I've been thinking and praying and praying and thinking. I've weighed the pros and the cons. I've talked it over with a friend or two, my husband, and myself. And I've come to a decision.

I'm saying goodbye to my Facebook account in a few days.

Shocking, I know. Feel free to gasp, cry, wail, weep, pass out, etc.

Before I explain my reasons, let me first say that I don't think Facebook is evil. I also don't think I am somehow more mature or more spiritual or more whatever than those who continue to use Facebook. I think Facebook is a great thing--when it's used the right way. I've reconnected with people I went to high school with, people I haven't seen or heard from in eight or nine years, teachers and mentors who've influenced who I am today, people I went to church with, even family members I've never met. I've been able to see pictures of friends and family and their kids who live far away. I wouldn't have had those opportunities otherwise. So, Facebook, I thank you for all that.

Now, on to why I've come to my decision...

First of all, time is of the essence these days. Seriously, I'm at home all day, every day with the two most precious children ever. I have so many responsibilities at home--cooking three times a day, cleaning and more cleaning, home educating, time with the Lord, quality time with my husband, keeping our lives and schedules and closets and shelves organized, and occasionally, getting a little bit of time to myself. With all those duties--duties, I might add, that I love and cherish every day--I don't really have time to maintain and check a Facebook page 50 times a day, nor do I want to. I don't need anymore responsibilities, and in my opinion, if you're going to have some type of online networking account, you should maintain it. And I have maintained mine. And my responsibilities have been shirked several times because of it. No bueno.

I have my blog, and I'm content with that. More than content, actually. I like writing my thoughts and feelings, funny stories, recipes, kid stuff, and crazy husband stuff in a place that's all mine. You can read it or not; it's your choice. I don't feel the need to blog every single day. And I'm glad I no longer feel the need to update my status on Facebook every 5 minutes (ok, not really that much) either.

Secondly, I think Facebook is great for staying in touch with people. I'm pretty sure that's why it was created. Connecting and reconnecting is awesome, and I'm all about it. But I'm a people person, not a computer person. I want real relationships with real people, not cyber relationships with cyber people who barely know me. I have nearly 300 friends (I know, that's a small number compared to a lot of people) on Facebook, and maybe a handful of those people really know me, really care about my family and our needs, would really be there for me if my world came crashing down. Those few are the people I talk with on a daily or weekly basis, the people I call during times of victory, the people who rejoice with me in good times, the people who would do anything for me, the people I cry to when things are awful. Those are the people who I stay in contact with day in and day out, and that contact isn't online. It's face-to-face and personal. It's phone calls and visits and yes, even writing letters. I don't have anything against the other 200-something people, and I don't expect them to be all those things to me and my family. Why? Because they don't know me.

I've never been the kind of girl who needs tons and tons of friends. I'm satisfied with three or four really amazing, deep relationships. I don't have casual acquaintances; never have. I can't stand surface-level stuff. I'm a deep, passionate, driven person, and I need my friendships to be able to handle all that about me. I can't be deep, passionate, or driven on Facebook. It just doesn't work for me.

Third, I have seen the rise of social networking, texting, e-mailing, etc. over the last several years, and frankly, it scares me. It scares me because people are losing touch with each other. You're probably thinking, But I thought you just said we are connecting and reconnecting?

I did say that. I just don't count genuine connection as being in the cyber category. I confess that it makes me feel good when people comment on my status updates. It also makes me feel important or something when someone I haven't talked to in years finds me on Facebook and adds me as their friend. And, if I were being really honest, I would say that the more those two things happen, the better I feel about myself. Isn't that crazy?

The reason I say people are losing touch with each other is this: we've replaced face-to-face or telephone conversations with Facebook updates and texting. And it's becoming more and more commonplace and accepted. I can't stand it when I'm trying to have a real conversation with someone and they check their cell phone every time a new text or email comes in. It drives me crazy when I'm with people who aren't really there because their fingers are going a hundred miles an hour updating or commenting on something online. I'm not pointing fingers here. I'm guilty of it myself. And change starts with me.

I had coffee with a friend last night, and we were discussing this very topic. She told me about one of her friends whose husband is an upper-level executive at a very successful company. He was constantly annoyed and frustrated by the number of men and women who were clicking away at the keys on their cell phones during meetings. It was finally confirmed to him that these co-workers were updating Twitter and Facebook accounts and statuses during company meetings. He went home, and in his frustration, told his wife, "I just wish people would check in with Jesus as much as they check their dumb Facebook pages!" His wife deleted her Facebook account that evening.

My final and most important reason for going off Facebook is that what that executive said of his employees is true of me. If I had to show a tally of the number of times I check in with God versus the number of times I get online to see updates and such, the result would be shameful. All other reasoning aside, that right there is motivation enough for me to say that, in the grand scheme of things, Facebook just isn't that important.

All that said, I hope people continue to stay on Facebook. This is by no means an attempt to boycott or malign online social networking. I knew people would ask me why I made this decision, and I didn't want to have to send out 200-something e-mails. This is my conviction, and not one I want to push off on others.

P.S. This blog is an RSS Feed application on Facebook. If you read my blog on Facebook, it will no longer be viewable once I delete my account. If you want to continue to read my musings and stories and such, my blog address is

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

About That Time

Well, girls, it's about that time again. I'm on the lookout for a new swimsuit, and I need some help making my decision. I think I've narrowed my choices down to two very cute and hopefully very flattering suits.

By the way, both choices come from, a website dedicated to stylish and modest swim wear. Check it out!

Here's the first one, zebra top with black skirt bottom:

And here's the second choice, polka-dot top with yellow skirt bottom:

Just leave me a comment on which one you like best! Thanks!

Picture Study: Monet-Week 3

The Water Lily Garden by Claude Monet, 1899

Apparently, Monet has a way of making my children feel happy because that's how they said this painting made them feel.

We hope you feel just as happy and pretty as we do as you study The Water Lily Garden this week!