Monday, December 25, 2006

Welcome to Aduladi World!

This is just really a test to see if I want to make the jump from one blog to another as the host for my current blog has been doing a lot of "updating" and frankly I am quite frustrated! So, if you eventually see more and more written here, well then, "Bob's your uncle!"

Here is the player list for this team of ours...

Mr. Clean - head honcho of the house and general all around great hubby. Nicknamed by my dear friend p31wife due to his shaved head and tall stature (not due to his love of cleaning and disinfection; still waiting for that to kick in!). Pretty amazing guy in my book!

Angel - CFO, teacher, head chef, etc., etc., etc.,

K.Z. - 10 year old, number one son! Lover of all things bug like and gross and destined to be "daddy's little man". He is the spitting image of Mr. Clean (before he adopted the Kojak look) and a bundle of energy.

Xena - 8 year old warrior princess daughter. The baby nicknamed Xena and it fits her personality perfectly. She will either grow up to be Wonder Woman or a contestant on American Idol. My vote is for Wonder Woman although she has a great voice!

C'sa - my baby (okay she is 6 and technically not a baby anymore)! Quite a match for Xena and also a great friend.

Eazy - our super laid back 5 year old who just might grow up to invent something super cool.

Das - "Das Baby".  My heart and soul.  My 2 1/2 year old alpha male. 

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Best Christmas Present Ever...

Today after a long morning of running errands, K.Z. and Xena and I were relaxing while C'sa napped. Xena commented about the cross I was wearing and decidedly told me that it was not like the "real cross". Taking her up on this, I wanted to hear her take on the "real cross".

She stretched out her arms while putting one foot on top of the other and said, "the real cross was shaped liked this and it was BIG! This is how Jesus was on the real cross and they put nails in His hands and his feet!". I asked her if she thought it hurt Jesus and with wide eyes she replied that it did. At this, K.Z. got interested in the conversation so I dug a little deeper and asked why He would do that if it hurt so badly.

"So we would not die!” Xena shouted excitedly, "and we could go to heaven forever!”

After a little more discussion K.Z. thoughtfully interjected, "I cannot go to heaven because I have sin in my life." On that, I pounced.

I grabbed a small piece of tissue paper that was on the floor (after all, who has time to vacuum when there are souls to win for the kingdom?) and said, "Imagine this is sin". Then I crumpled it and tossed it away from me. "That is what God can do with your sin and why Christ died on the cross. The sin is gone. Forgiven."

Xena excitedly replied, "Yeah, He can crush it!"

After a long discussion I told both of them exactly what they needed to do to live with the Savior for eternity. I also followed it up as I always do with, "when you are ready and if you would like help with what to pray, just ask Dad or me." Usually this is followed with the obligatory, "Okay", and life carries on. Not today.

In a small voice K.Z. asked if we could pray right now. Then Xena asked if she could as well. I talked a little more to them about the commitment they were about to make and how important it was to know it, really know it, in the bottom of your heart that it was the Truth and the only way to heaven. They both acknowledged they believed that.

Already an emotional wreck trying to hold it together (the thought of my children joining Mr. Clean and I in eternity always makes me a little weepy), Zach asked if we could get my prayer shawl and pray under it's cover. That pretty much sent me over the edge (but I held it together). I have a prayer shawl that I like to use simply for focus. I believe you can pray anytime and anywhere, but when I need to be completely focused and not in my everyday world, I escape to the shawl and pray under it, blocking out everything else. When the children discovered me doing this one day they were quite curious about it. I simply explained that I use it when I have something really important to pray about and I need to concentrate completely. Now my son wanted to use it for the same reason.

The three of us gathered together under it and I led them both in prayer. Two of my beautiful blessings prayed for forgiveness of sin and that Christ would be their personal Savior and govern over their lives, hearts and minds. They acknowledged that the only way to salvation was through Him and that He sacrificed His life for theirs. My heart was so full it could have exploded. My tear ducts certainly did!

Afterward the glow on their faces said it all. K.Z. was euphoric in a way that I have never seen before. You could not wipe the smile away. I told them that this was an important day and they should tell someone! First on the list was "Daddy" and then they wanted to call good friends and godly mentors of ours from church, a couple we adore. A gentleman who serves as a church Elder and his wife, a definite "Titus 2" kind of woman! The kids have "adopted" them as kind of surrogate grandparents (they led a small group we were in and the kids have grown very fond of them). I have never seen my son more proud. Normally he can be shy on the phone but today he told our friends exactly what he did.

To top it all off, at bedtime K.Z. asked if he could pray (we have corporate prayer every night as a family and we alternate who says bedtime prayers). He once again prayed the prayer I had helped him with earlier, except this time it was all on his own and in his own words.

My Christmas is complete, I could not have asked for a better gift than the eternal salvation of two of my three children. The greatest part? They are anxious to share there new lives with C'sa and want her to "become a Christian" (in their words) too!

Saturday, December 9, 2006

The Christmas Vibe

I am convinced that "Murphy" lives in my house (you know, the Murphy of Murphy's Law?). I am usually pretty on top of all the various Christmas activities that I want to accomplish. I get the annual letter done, pictures taken, presents purchased and mailed, tree up, etc. all in plenty of time. Well, the tree is up and the house is decorated and that is about it.

I had grandiose plans to make amazing Christmas crafts for art class, bake cookies from scratch while teaching the kids how to properly measure and mix (math and science?) ingredients and help the children memorize scripture and the words to our favorite carols (since Xena thinks every line of "Away in a Manger" is "the little Lord Jesus lay down where He lay"). The ingredients for the cookies are still at the store and every line to "Away in a Manger" is still as stated above! Christmas craft? Is "hmmph" spelled with two "m"s or three?

All that aside, at least I could get the pictures done. Here is where Murphy sticks his nose in...

Seeing that there are only 15 (gasp!) days left until the 25th I figured tomorrow better be the day we get our Christmas card picture taken, uploaded and created. So what happens today? K.Z. went to a birthday party at a huge play place and while running managed to give himself a slight black eye. Tonight Xena complained that her chin hurt and when I looked, it was red and chapped. At least the picture will really represent what the kids look like! I am just waiting for C'sa to fall down and get the normal black bruise on her forehead. The Addams Family portrait would be complete!

It has taken me close to 32 years (I am 32) to fully appreciate all the effort my mother put into Christmas when I was a child. The Christmas spirit was live and thriving in our house every year without a touch of visible stress. That's all I want to recreate and every year it seems to get farther from my grasp! So to try and get back that Christmas vibe I always had as a kid I popped in some Nat King Cole singing Christmas songs (it always takes me right back) and stopped to think about what it all really means.

Saturday, December 2, 2006

I was confident...

K.Z. (ds-6) is going to a birthday party today. Even better, it is a swimming party (oh, to be 6 and be that excited about putting on a bathing suit in the middle of the fall/winter). He can't wait.

K.Z. is a confident swimmer. No expert at all, but he grew up swimming in my mom's pool and is not scared of the water. Give the boy some floaties or a kick board and he would swim across the English Channel. So I had no qualms whatsoever about sending him along to this party until he said, and I quote...

"I packed my goggles so I can't drown".

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Happy Birthday My Love

Today is little C'sa's birthday and I am simply overwhelmed with how "old" my baby has become. My 7 month old nephew was in town for Thanksgiving and comparing "my baby" to my brother's made me realize she is not really a baby anymore. Boy how my heart sighs...

Mr. Clean has summed up the day perfectly, so I can just direct you to his view of the event...

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Home At Last...

For the past three years that I have been living in our township I have been waiting for Mr. Clean to come home and tell me we were getting transfered to my dream state or anywhere else in the lower 48. I have been waiting for the next leg of our adventure, ready to put up the "for sale" sign in the front yard and pack up the offspring before they got too comfortable here.

Too late! I am comfortable here. Talking to some friends the other day about some development that is coming to our area, I realized that I cared. This is my home, my children's home. We have friends here that we adore and can't imagine not seeing on a regular basis. I have girlfriends I can envision growing older with, watching our children grow up together with, supporting each other during empty nest syndrome and those "oh so not gentle" changes that happen in life.

I know it sounds a little hokey, but it feels good to be "home". And for that I am so very thankful! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day!

Tuesday, March 7, 2006

Geocaching Fever!

We have caught the bug and it is absolutely my fault! I mentioned to my hubby that a friend's hubby and sons were Geocaching and what a great activity it might be for him and the kids to do and great for geography lessons. He responded a little more enthusiastically than I could have anticipated and went out the same day to buy a hand held GPS!

***Geocaching is finding hidden caches in your area planted by others using specified coordinates programmed into a GPS.***

Last night we literally scarfed down dinner the minute Mr. Clean came in the door to try and uncover a cache (treasure hunting is what the kids call it) before the sun went down. Being novices we picked ("we" being Mr. Clean ) for our very first treasure hunt, a micro cache. Micro is exactly what it sounds like. Our first geocache outing was unsuccessful as we did not find our treasure!

Not ones to be defeated, Mr. Clean promptly came home and looked up the success rate for the cache he picked. No one found it on the first try! So this weekend I think we should start out finding a cache the size of, I don't know, Vermont? At least the kids would not go away empty handed and disheartened!

Monday, March 6, 2006

Why does Monday have to exist?

Last night I was convinced that I was going to bound out of bed (complete with birds singing on the windowsill to welcome me to my day), exercise, jump in the shower and have bright and shiny scrubbed children (and dressed) ready for a hearty breakfast and a great school morning.

.....Now back to reality.....

I could not sleep at all last night so at 2 am I took an over the counter sleep aid (Wal-Mart brands rock, by the way!) not thinking about the time and how long the effects would last. Needless to say, I was not bouncing out of bed when the alarm went off! After getting through the Wal-Mart induced fog I was lucky to remember my kids names. So it is now 11:35 am, no one is dressed except me nor scrubbed and shiny (including me, I am just lucky to be dressed).

So far today the "Z-man" (ds age "almost 6") has done one sheet of LA and played Reader Rabbit games on the computer. That counts as school in my book!! "Xena" (dd age 4) did one page of LA and wandered off to watch Disney's version of Robin Hood. Not quite the classic, but historical, no? "C'sa" (dd age 2) has been playing with Play-Doh and watching her brother on the computer.

Mommy... still kind of in the fog! More later once the haze has cleared!

Friday, March 3, 2006

The End of a Hard Week

Today ends what has been a very long, physically and emotionally tiring week. Three deaths were prominent in our world this week, yet we did not personally know any of the decedents.

The first was the service and funeral of Marine Captain Bryan Willard who was a good friend and college mate of two of our dear friends. The second was the death of Karl Marvin who was burned in an explosion and subsequently died from his injuries. He was the brother-in-law of a fellow church member and sister in Christ. The third was the unexpected death of Melissa "Missey" Gray, an amazing member of the homeschool community and young mother of five beautiful children. She died after complications from a c-section delivering her fifth child.

These three people reminded me just how fragile our lives really are, yet there is such a glory and peace in knowing that our lives are not just our own. The Great Physician is in control and was in control with all three of these situations. He knew them before they were even formed in the womb (Jeremiah 1:5) and their lives were special and important to Him.

It stunned me how hard these three deaths affected me. Maybe because they were right in a row. Maybe because I knew someone who was suffering because of the loss. This is a feeling you never want again, but a feeling you almost need to hold on to a little bit, simply to remember someone is dealing with it everyday... somewhere.

The biggest realization for me this week was the fact that we are to love one another above ourselves and I have not been really good at doing just that. Maybe that is why this has been such a tough week. I felt pain for people that I am supposed to love, even though we have never had the privilege to meet.

Have a wonderful weekend,