Monday, December 22, 2008

25 Random Things About Me

Rules: Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

1. I hate feeling like I have to tag 25 people just because the computer told me to. I'm a rebel at heart and won't be tagging anyone.

2. I stay up way too late at night just to be able to relax without interruption.

3. I had my first crush when I was in pre-school. Don't remember his name - he had big brown eyes. After that, I had crushes all the way through school - long term. Some lasted 3-4 years.

4. I fell in love with my husband when I was 16. My longest running crush to date.

5. Eric and I first kissed the day after my Senior banquet - June 1, 1991. He was my first kiss. I've never kissed anyone else.

6. Eric and I dated for 4 years, 1 month, and one week before we got married. We broke up twice in that time.

7. Eric and I moved to MD the day after we married and moved and moved 7 more times in the next 6 years of our marriage - including the states of VT, VA, and ME.

8. Eric is my favorite topic of conversation. Can't you tell?

9. My first baby was born via c-section. All the rest were natural. No drugs, though I asked for them in 2 deliveries but the babies came too quickly. Fun times.

10. I am the middle child of 3 and the only girl.

11. I went to college for 3 years to become an English teacher. Never graduated. Got a better proposal.

12. I took piano lessons for 8 years before I was introduced to my first chord. That was after I changed teachers. But, by that time, it was hopeless.

13. I went to Cedarville College (now University) for one year. Loved it. Went to the local state college for 2 years. Hated it.

14. I spent much of my high school life with a perm.

15. I'm still afraid of the dark.

16. I've never gotten a speeding ticket.

17. My first car was a 1979 Silver Buick Park Avenue. Parts fell off on a regular basis (fenders, hood ornament, etc). My trunk was full of parts. A police officer once pulled me over because he couldn't believe my car had passed inspection. I ran it out of oil TWICE and it still ran! The stories I could tell about that car!

18. Eric's first car was the same make - only a year older and in burgundy.

19. I never feel like I have it together.

20. Getting up in front of people was my biggest fear in elementary school through my Jr. year of high school. I began to love it when I realized I could make people laugh and cry while encouraging them in the Lord.

21. I yell at my kids. I hate it. God is helping me and by His grace I'm much better. My children still love me. How's that for brutally honest?

22. I've lived in NY most of my life. I'm still not used to the cold.

23. I'd much rather listen to secular rock music that Christian rock. Does that make sense? Can't stand the mixing the clean with the unclean. Hot or cold, not lukewarm. Not that I listen to a bunch of secular music - prefer classical, quite honestly. Do like some Steven Curtis Chapman, Steve Green, etc., mainly because of some sentimental value - but can't stand a lot of these Christian artists trying to be like the world to win them. Give them something DIFFERENT.

24. I always thought I'd have 3 or 4 kids. Eric always wanted 6. God gave us 7.

25. I've always felt insecure around popular young people - back in high school and even today. Give me a room full of adults or little kids - popular teenagers scare me to death.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Sugar & Hugs

So, last night our church had its annual Christmas concert. It was a night full of beautiful instrumental music, singing, and a powerful message of the gift of God's love. To top it off, there were millions of cookies and gallons of punch offered after the service. A highlight of the year to be certain.

It was a late night, but a joyful one. As my boys were preparing to go upstairs to bed, their sister ran and said, "WAIT!" She then proceeded to hug them both and say "good-night" with a big smile on her face. My five year old son is much like her so just hugged back and returned the good wish. My 11 year old son, on the other hand gave her an amused look and only had one thing to say:

"You had too much sugar."


My daughter's reply? "I only had seven cookies!" SEVEN!

Oh, the merriness of the season!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Beautiful Moms - We Must Have Done Something Right!

It's been two weeks since I posted anything and I'm getting this in just under the wire. Does that tell you how busy we've been around here during the "most wonderful time of the year?"

Even now, I have little time to leave any profound thought. I'll try to say much with few words - for that's all the time I have tonight.

I don't know about you, but I come down pretty hard on myself as a mom. I see my children's messy rooms and I know I've come short in the training department. I hear my children argue with one another and I realize that they're taking after my control nature. I cringe at my children's lack of manners and know that I should have taken more time in teaching them. The list goes on.

However, in the past few days, the Lord has shown me that my husband and I, by His grace alone, must be doing something right. At bedtime, my oldest son is picking out Bible stories and reading them directly from the good old KJV to his younger brother. AND, his younger brother looks forward to it!!! Following his example, our oldest daughter has begun reading Bible stories (from a book) to her youngest sister at bedtime as well!

In the valley of parenthood there IS a glimmer of hope!!

(Sorry, "valley" is the only word that came to mind tonight!)

Your assignment for this week, Beautiful Mom: Look for and see something your children are doing RIGHT as a direct result of the training YOU and your husband have given them. Call for a time-out on your self-inflicted beating and praise God for His grace and mercy!!

"I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." III John 4

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Beautiful Moms - Enjoy Them Now

I was cleaning the attic the other day - a miracle indeed - when I came across a box of pictures. As I opened the box, I came across pictures of my oldest son as a baby. In the age of digital cameras, pictures of my last 3 children still in the midst of babyhood often flash across my computer screen keeping their baby faces fresh in my mind. But, my poor Michael's pictures are stashed away in the attic, only to shock me into the realization that it was just YESTERDAY that he wore the same clothes his 16 month old brother is wearing today.

As I rifled through these pictures, I remembered how impatient I was with his toddler-like ways. Why did he ask so many questions? Why did he whine almost constantly? I was reminded that I am still impatient with his child-like ways. After all, he's 11. Shouldn't he be more MATURE?!

What a sad realization it is when you see yourself making the same mistakes even after a decade.

As a mom of a young child, I would often think, "He'll forget this. He won't remember how badly I've just messed up." Now, as I make the same mistakes (bluntly - sin the same sins), I cannot console myself with that thought. He WILL remember the unkind words I say to him. He WILL remember my impatience.

If he preaches behind a pulpit, will he talk about the mother who taught him Scripture and helped him become a man of God? Or, will he praise God for allowing him to do His will IN SPITE of the mother he had?

I have to wonder.

When my older three were little, older moms would often tell me, "Enjoy them now. It's hard with all the diaper changes and their helplessness, but enjoy them. The time goes too quickly. Before you know it, they'll be grown." I tried to see it. But, I know I didn't understand.

My son is eleven. I found his baby pictures Saturday. His first birthday party was yesterday. Today I understand.

I am blessed to still have babies and toddlers. I'm trying to enjoy them today. For tomorow I'll be looking up at my baby. I'll be wishing I could remember what it felt like to hold him. I'll be trying to remember the last time I was able to pick him up.

Like I am trying to remember now.

I'm not going to say a Beautiful Mom enjoys the time today. Unfortunately, we don't seem to understand until it's a bit too late. Instead, just try to be a Beautiful Mom who ends up with few regrets.

Enjoy them now. It's hard with all the diaper changes and their helplessness, but enjoy them. The time goes too quickly. Before you know it, they'll be grown.