Happy Sister’s Day

So……It’s Sisters Day. 

I had no idea until I was scrolling through the feed on Facebook instead of folding my laundry that was on its second round of drying (to smooth the wrinkles that formed when I didn’t get the load out yesterday). 

Sisters Day is the first Sunday of August.  I never knew. And because I’ll probably forget this fun fact before the next Sisters Day comes around,  there are a few things I guess I should say. 

 

In honor of Sisters Day I used this picture (which is great of you two) even though my hair makes me look like a rooster.
 
To my sisters, 

You were my first best friend. And now decades later, with hundreds of miles between us, you’re both still my best friend. 

I’m sorry for borrowing your clothes without asking (and sometimes ruining them like the time I burned a hole in your suede vest). 

I forgive you too, for things like taking credit for nick-naming our first nephew Rufus when you know good and well that I came up with that name. I forgive you for throwing a chair at me when I wouldn’t let you out of the room and also for the time when we were little and you wouldn’t let me sleep with you and I got stung by a stinging scorpion because I was crying on the floor. 

I think it’s cool how we know each other’s looks (even though sometimes your look means “What are you thinking wearing that get-up?”) There’s also the look that tells me “Yep. You’ve lost it…” when you witness me overreacting with one of my kids. You know my looks too like the one I make when I’m thinking about laughing at something I think you said wrong. 

I wish we lived closer to each other. 

I take comfort in knowing I can tell you anything. Thanks for answering my lengthy texts and for staying on the phone with me when I’m down. Thanks for keeping secrets and trusting me with yours. 

Looking back, I think it’s cool the way we shared our birthday parties (since our birthday was two days apart). 

Thanks for being our life-sized doll when we wanted to put your bangs in high ponytails and stretch out your ears because we thought it looked funny. Thanks for dancing “the Chinka” for our friends and making them laugh. 

I think you’re brave. 

Thanks for making me an aunt. My heart is full of love and bursting with pride  for every niece and nephew. 

Thanks for French-braiding my hair over and over even though I’d complain that you pulled too tight EVERY TIME. 

Sorry for those times I burned you with the curling iron. 

The way you call me “dork” is kind of like a term of endearment. 

My fond memories are too many to count like the times we’d pretend to put makeup on each other using just our fingers and a little imagination. 

I love thinking back to the times you would pretend to be “Jo” from Little Women or the cowardly lion from “The Wizard of Oz”. You were always good for a performance. 

Thanks for giving me awesome brother-in-laws who I call my friends too.

The older we get the more I think resemble mom in both how we look and how we act. 

Thanks for being an awesome aunt to my kids. 

I skipped my Sunday nap to write this and almost got overheated in the garage looking for pictures of us (Which by the way are too few). 

I’m glad you’re my sister even though I’m always too busy talking with you about what’s going on in our lives to actually say it. Surely you know. 
Even though it sounds hokey, know that I love you always. 

Happy Sisters Day.  

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My Friend for Every Occasion

I almost got run over this week at Market Basket. I was in the checkout lane looking down (at my phone I’m sure) when an elderly gentleman started backing up on one of Market Basket’s scooters. A guy behind me shouted “He’s fixing to run over you!”  I sidestepped with my little red basket reserved for the “under ten item shoppers” and barely escaped a broken toe. I thanked the guy behind me. 

  
Seconds later, I heard the guy behind me say something. Assuming we were now friends, being that he saved my toe, I turned around ready to respond. He wasn’t looking at me but instead toward the rack of gossip magazines that Rylie calls out as sinful on every visit as she’s straining to see Ben Affleck’s new girlfriend on the cover of Star. 

“Was he talking to me?”, I wondered. There was nobody with him or behind me but he hadn’t acknowledged my turning towards him. I turned back around and stared at my phone again. 

Again he spoke and again I turned backward to face him, my new friend. I looked at him hoping he would repeat himself rather than making me ask him what he’d just said. This time he turned from the magazines and looked straight at me, but instead of repeating himself he looked at me like he was wondering why I was looking at him. 

Then he spoke…

-Only it wasn’t to me, but somebody in his ear. He had one of those darned Bluetooth things that I wasn’t aware of, on account of I forget about those things. He hadn’t been talking to me at all (except for the toe-saving exclamation). 

Now I felt like the man on his scooter who was a little unaware of his surroundings. 

There are a couple of things I can think of that lead to this and other near accidents in front of me and the misunderstandings behind me. 

I need to look up. I have become obsessed with looking at my phone. It’s my go to for information, entertainment and companionship. (Sad, I know.). 

 My phone tethers me in more ways than I’m aware. I answer every text like quicksilver. You’ve checked in somewhere on Facebook? I know where you are.  Yet I don’t know that the gentleman in front of me is careening toward my person with his scooter which makes a noise loud enough noise to hear if you’re paying any attention, which brings me to 

Problem #2

I can’t hear. 

If you know me at all, you’ve probably heard me say something like 

“Can you tell me again.” 

“What’s that?”

“One more time?”

I’ve learned to read lips which works well unless you’re the kids in the back of the car, you’re the person on the other end of the phone, or you’re the guy behind me in Market Basket trying to have a private conversation on Bluetooth. 

These two problems have caused me some embarrassment, feelings of isolation and on many occasions discouragement. 

My problem isn’t limited to a phone habit or bad ears, I wish it was. I have small vision and a listening problem. 

By forgetting to look up, my vision is short-sided. I only see what’s right in front of me.  My iPhone, yes, but more often my circumstances, keep me from seeing the bigger picture, the brighter picture. My focus is like the metallic ball in a pinball machine, small and unguided. 

I’m fixated on the sink full of dirty dishes that were all clean an hour ago. Im aggravated that my choice for the ESPN award isn’t the one chosen. I’m worried at my kid’s unexplained fever. I’m agitated that CVS doesn’t have my prescription ready AGAIN at the promised time, as if that has grandiose eternal significance. 

Now about that hearing problem. It ties in closely to what I see, or don’t see in front of me.  I can’t help what I can’t hear. But I can help who I listen to.  I can pay attention to the words on the lips of the One who speaks that I may hear.  I can disregard the voices that aren’t meant for me, instead choosing the one that calls me to look up  giving me the proper perspective in which I can view all things. 

He has words of advice and encouragement with which he wishes to fill my ear and wrongly focused heart. His words remind me he is my friend. 

He waits for me to put down my phone, my worries, my frustrations and my preconceived notions. He desires that I depart from my routine, my company and the misleading voice in my head to look to him and the word he has for me. 

Unimposing, he waits. 

God has every intention of being my Bluetooth. He’s the one in front, looking out for me and the one behind me. And he ALWAYS has a word for me. 

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Planned Parenthood- One More Reason to Fight It

  
Ever heard of Dr. Deborah Nucatola?

 I hadn’t before today, but her name is now one I won’t forget. She’s the senior director of Planned Parenthood who is responsible for overseeing medical practice in PP’s clinics. WND Health reports that she has held her position since 2009 performing abortions and training new abortion doctors on babies up to 24 weeks. …Stick with me. 

  An undercover video released today by the Center for Medical Progress shows Nucatola speaking candidly with undercover actors. A man and woman pose as buyers from a human biologics company interested in buying organs (belonging to unborn babies who are being aborted). 

Nucatola discusses how Planned Parenthood sells the parts of these destroyed babies, at times using partial birth abortions to do so. If there is any question, this is indefensible,  not to mention it’s unlawful. On this video which can be found on YouTube, Nucatola shares with the potential buyers (posers) how abortionists cover up this illegal practice. 

These organs are said to be harvested for use in scientific research. 

In the video she chomps salad while describing the violent nature in which this procedure is performed, nonchalantly detailing how the baby is “crushed” leaving necessary parts intact, including the head. 

Planned Parenthood, the organization supposedly FOR women, is making profit off selling the body parts of their children.  

Several sources (including the the YouTube video with Dr. Nucatola) and a link with a petition will be on my Facebook wall. I don’t talk about abortion often publicly because it’s something I’m most passionate about and I tend to speak with less composure when I talk about it. But this makes me sick and I can’t be silent. 

I’m guessing we won’t hear a lot about this from the mainstream media being that it doesn’t fit their agenda. 

I might not have brought it up myself had there not been something we can do about it. 

Obviously we can pray.  We can pray for the hearts of expecting moms who find themselves in often tumultuous situations where they believe, many times they’re encouraged, that there’s no other way for them other than an abortion. We can pray for those who facilitate abortions, in any capacity.  Pray that they would have a somber realization of what it is they’re participating in. 

Pray for those who are Pro-Choice. Pray that their hearts would come to an understanding of what constitutes life. Each life has value and that life exceeds a choice. 

Pray for Pro-Lifers; that they would advocate, empowered with courage to speak words of wisdom and love to those with whom they have contact. 

Pray for those who have a vote that impacts the lives of the unborn (which is really each of us). Pray that the cause of the unborn would find root in our hearts rather than being something that sparks a fury that fast fizzles when we scroll down to some other horrifying piece of news. 

And, finally, sign the petition found in the WND post on my Facebook wall. I’m trying to get a direct link here. This petition asks congress to investigate Planned Parenthood regarding the sell of these organs from the unborn.  Surely we can do that. 

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Church Camp Prayer List

Hallie is not camp material. She doesn’t like loud music, she’s a picky eater, and probably most contrary to camp-loving, she has serious space issues. 

  
No lie. Her first sentence as a toddler was “I need my space”. I don’t remember the other two kids’ first sentences, it’s just that her’s was important. She had a five-and-a-half year old space-invading, hug-loving brother. Before we taught her how to say “I need my space”,  she would scream and swat at Hayden like he was a gargantuan blood-sucking insect come to sap her life. She reacts that same way on the inside to most social activities. 

But she left for camp this morning along with eight other teens. They’ll be at DBU for the week. I took her shopping a few days ago in hopes to get her excited about the trip. I bought her a Marvel t-shirt (she’s a big Marvel fan), some gum, and some Pringles. Sour Cream and Onion Pringles are one of her love languages. Solitude is another of her love languages. 

At least she’ll have one of those with her on the trip. 

Here’s the crew. Pray for them. And see what I mean about the “space issue”?

I’m guessing the Pringles will be gone by tomorrow; the rest of the snacks will probably last a couple of days if she keeps them hidden like the strawberry yogurt she sneaks behind the pickled okra in the fridge so Hayden and Rylie won’t find it. 

The snacks will quickly disappear, but I’ve made a list of things I pray she’ll bring back with her when we see her at the end of this week. 

Here’s the list in case you want to join me in asking God for these things for her (and, well,  the other kids too). 

I pray that she’ll learn to experience God alone in a crowded room. 

-That she’ll better learn that she’s never alone even when she’s the only one in her room. 

My prayer is that she’ll learn that “God is bigger than the Boogeyman” like Veggie Tales used to tell her. 

May she learn to hear him better when His voice is small, but sure. 

I pray her desire for his word and her desire to obey it will grow. 

Of course I think she’s beautiful.  My hope is that she’ll hold fast to the kind of beauty God describes in 1 Peter:

Your beauty should not come from outward adornment…..Instead it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 

I pray that she’ll learn that worship can be practiced when you’re out of your comfort zone (in her case maybe touching shoulders with some gregarious fella who wants the whole world to hear him belt out “I can only imagine……..yeah”). May she learn that worship sometimes best happens when things aren’t comfortable. 

May she find new courage to carry to high school that will help her make new friends and find her English class the first day. May that courage remind her to be a friend to all.

I pray that her heart will grow in its desire to serve. 

Never be lacking  in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.  Romans 12:11

I pray that she will come to know God more intimately than she has before; that all the space in her heart will be occupied with new things from Him. 

I know that’s a lot of stuff to ask that she comes back with. But she did take four big bags. 

That’s plenty of room.

  

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Stay Calm. Stay in Prayer. The Sky isn’t Falling.

 
  

    

I dreamed about the end-times again last night. My dream included a sky of funnel-like clouds that dipped into every inch of a dark sky. A dreadful dreamer, I was at college, unprepared for some big assignment I knew nothing about. 

– A cataclysmic storm and the old “un-prepared at college” dream? Gosh I’m a bummer. 

Our professor had given us a mid-class break so the class was outside. The funnel clouds produced war-like spaceships that quickly invaded the air above head. Everybody ran and took shelter. Aliens (I guess ?) proceeded to zap everybody in sight with some sort of gun that turned us into zombies.  
 
…..And I don’t even watch Sci-Fi. 
 
I’m assuming I dreamed this because of my remark just the other day that my reaction to undesired events is like that of Chicken Little. Bet I’m not the only one.  I act like the sky is falling. I overreact. I speak hopelessly and then hide (like I did in my dream). 

Another response to yucky stuff involves some sort of a rescue plan. I’ve got to fix the wrongs. 

Other times I get angry and sulk, or lash out. 


I usually wait until I become desperate before I throw my hands up to the one above my falling sky
; the one who has set the moon and stars in their place. 
 
The last two weeks has been full of undesired events thanks to the Supreme Court and the derision found in a litany of FB comments thereafter (Add the confederate flag debate and Facebook has been a war zone).  We’ve had a nine-year-old with multiple bacterial infections, including pneumonia, with symptoms ranging from daily fever and vomit, pain and lethargy to asthma attacks and hives. There have also been a couple of other personal sad occasions. 
 
I’ve given time the past few days to think not so much about my feelings regarding these events, but more to my actual response. I’m being reminded that my response says much (maybe more)about my faith than my stated beliefs no matter how many times I express what I believe. 

The way I act, especially following bad times, either confirms my faith or shows a lack of it. 
 
Scripture today has given me a firm path to set my feet back on. God has a good word for the anxiety and anger that so easily well up in this heart of mine AND the spirit I find crushed in tough times. 
 

The Lord is near to the broken-hearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18
 
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken spirit and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. Psalm 51:17
 
He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds Psalm 147:3

 
That makes me think we can expect (not welcome, but expect) that our hearts will be sick and burdened sometimes. These occasions God has said he will attend. 
 

Do not be anxious about anything. Philippians 4:6
 
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful,for building others up according to their needs, that may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:26
 

Trust in the Lord
….. Proverbs 3:5
 
….man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires…… James 1:20
 
An anxious heart weighs a man down…. Proverbs 11:25
 
Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city. Proverbs 16:32

 
It’s expected that we’ll be angry, but God tells us that our anger “does no good”. Likewise the only good outcome of worry is recognition that we are powerless without God. 

I’m finding the more passionately I feel about a matter the more my response ought to be measured carefully in prayer before responding outwardly even in cases where I’m sure I’m speaking on God’s behalf. 
 

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxieties on him…. be self-controlled and alert… 1Peter 5:6-8

 
When your heart is broken,  God is near.  
 
Cast your cares, your troubles on the Lord. God is near. 
 
-Your anger too. He’d rather you give it to him than you use it, venting foolishly or thinking his cause is furthered in fury. 

God is near. 
 
I’m also reminded to give thanks. 
 

The LORD is my strength and shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy [even in times of grief,….maybe a little leap, but it leaps] and I will give thanks…. Psalm 28:7

Here are a few of the day’s thanks:
 
Rylie’s out of bed today feeling much better. 
     

   My cousin and his wife are expecting quadruplets in January. 

God is still on the throne. 

I’m not in college. 

It’s summer. 

The Supreme Court hasn’t made a ruling today.  

The sky isn’t falling.

 In fact, the sun has shone all day. 

 

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Project 1100- Seeking Beauty in the Journey

  
It’s eleven-hundred and something miles to South Fork, Colorado. Traveling that far is difficult. Add difficulty for each kid due to limited space, competition for talk time, bathroom stops and spills. Speaking of spills, vomit joined our journey about an hour out. And did I mention bathroom stops? Rylie has had a UTI requiring more bathroom stops than usual. 

My mom taught me to have snacks, paper towels and bags full of entertainment handy for long road trips. There’s no preparing for some things the journey brings. 

Jason has taught me to keep my eye on the prize. Like Dory, “Keep on swimming, swimming, swim-ming” (or driving in our case).  Behind the wheel he’s a man on a mission. But what do you do when your mission is thwarted with illness and car trouble?

You change your perspective on what the prize is. You chill out a little, ignore the lemon-scented Clorox smell that fills the air, and you distract yourself from the things that aren’t going the way you planned. 

Best of all, you seek beauty

About four-hundred miles into the trip I got smart. I challenged myself to take one picture every hundred miles of the eleven-hundred trip. I’d forgotten my camera (amongst other things) at home so I just used my iPhone. I would then post each photo on Instagram with the hashtag project 1100. 

I began looking out my window searching for something spectacular to snap a picture of, but the project started in North Texas. All I saw was red dirt………….except for a sign on the side of the road. I quickly pressed the button on my phone for my first #project1100 picture. 

  
Who would have thought I’d appreciate an old “Peaches” sign, but I did. The blues and greens seemed to cheer up the dry hard ground.  

I was hooked. I waited impatiently for the next hundred miles to come around hoping that when mile ninety-nine came, another happy subject would be in view.  

   

I snapped again wondering why in the years we’ve traveled this same road have I never thought to appreciate what’s outside my window. 

  
This is when I changed up the rules a little bit. Why only take a picture every hundred miles. The new rule? Take a picture AT LEAST every hundred miles, but take as many as you’d like. 

   
   

Almost all of the pictures were taken through the window because Jason is like the Energizer bunny (He keeps going……) 

I rolled the window down a time or two.  Other times I  pressed the phone to the window avoiding a glare. 

  
A couple of times I reached across the car to capture something on Jason’s side. 

It helped pass the time. But more than that, I noticed things I’ve missed in thirty summers of traveling these roads. I found beauty in places I’ve considered barren. These places were just a part of the journey to “get through” before.   

     We made it to our destination and did the things I’d looked forward to. I feasted on fried burritos and conversation, sitting in a circle behind our cabin. I heard the familiar ring of the bell from the reliable old train that carries kids  (that aren’t darting around on bikes) from a fish pond to the putt-putt-golf place. I handed out quarters for the arcade in exchange for a little kid-free time spent talking with family.  

  

Washing clothes is better with company
  
  
We even found us a food truck
  
 

Our R&R was short-lived. Rylie’s asthma decided to vacation with us. A day and a half in she was pretty much couch-bound.  

A rare moment between sisters

By the third morning we were at a doctor’s office in nearby South Fork. She was having a severa asthma attack in addition to the UTI that’s still sticking around. The doctor told us we needed to get to lower elevation immediately and listed nearby hospitals that were at lowering altitudes. 

We spent more of our days traveling than we did enjoying our destination (five days on the road, three days staying put). 

Isn’t that life for you? 

  

We journey.

  
We hurry to “get there” missing so much along the way.  Sometimes we don’t get to where we planned to go. And even when we do, it’s most often not like we planned. Maybe life would be more fulfilling should we remember what Emerson said. 

Life is a journey, not a destination. 

 
   

It’s a journey with long stretches of road, twists and turns and unimaginable beauty. It’s beauty is accompanied by wonder and longing…and sometimes disappointment. Each part begs us to recognize God; our greatest company in every mile and stay. 

My favorite poet says it best. 

Earth’s crammed with heaven, 
And every common bush afire with God,
But only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries. 
-Elizabeth Barrett Browning 

So………

We’re home. 

But the journey continues. 

#project1100

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To my Husband; A Father’s Day Promise

I’ve been collecting my thoughts about you, you being the most important father (and person) in my life. You’re not MY father, you’re my main man. But I’m a star witness to you being Dad to the three runners up for most important people in my life. 
  
For Father’s Day this year I’m giving you something different. It’s not another sappy love post or one that boasts how proud I am of you. (Though I am proud). I’m giving you a gift that keeps on giving.

 I’m giving you a promise; one that I’ll likely fail at. But it’s a promise I’ll renew daily, just like commitments should be.

 It came tumbling over me, in my thinking, just how weighty your job as a father and as a man is.  

 You’re called to lead our flock. We look to you to financially and emotionally support us. I know how exhausting that job is. We expect you, after working long (often stressful) hours at work, to come home with energy to entertain us…or guide us…..or both. 

We want you to joke when we want you to joke and to be able to discern when your joking isn’t called for. We call on you to be the settler of disputes. I ask you to support me in my parenting, requesting clean up on aisle five after a mess has been made by my “moody momming”. 

We need you to be concerned about our day when concern for countless others takes up residence in your mind.  

 
  Somebody asked me once if I had keys to the church. I told them no. I joked that I’m glad not to have them because having extra keys means added responsibility. 

I lose my own keys enough without being accountable for another important set of keys. 

You have that responsibility though. You’ve got a big set of keys in this calling you’ve been given. 

I promise to remember that. 

You’re answerable to many, namely three (most of the time) darlings. 

Here’s what else I promise. 

I promise to reconsider the keys on my own keyring, ridding it of the ones that weigh it down. Because too often I ask you to carry those keys that we don’t even need.  I’ll learn better to say no to things leaving room for better things for us. 

I promise to guard the keys that I do have, protecting our time together at home and at the table. 

We expect unwavering strength in you. We need your unshakable love and commitment. 

I promise to pray that God would give the measure you need of each. 

I’ll remember to remain in prayer for you, calling out to the one who makes the rough places smooth, The Keeper of the Keys. 

For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Philippians 2:13

Remind me when I forget. 

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My Father in law, the Legend

For my father in law

…but first, let me back up….

I’m a cradle robber.  Jason will gladly tell you that , though it’s not nearly as bad as he makes it sound. I was a junior in high school when he was a sophomore. He was the first guy I had serious feelings for and I was the first girl he was serious about. That had to have been an adjustment for his family. 

He would basically come straight to my house after football practice and then stay until twelve minutes before his curfew; just enough time to make it home on time, stirring up a massive cloud of dust on the dirt roads between my house and his. 

His dad accepted and included me immediately. I was invited over every week for breakfast before school started.

…….the scrambled eggs that man has fed me. 

He has always been ready to give a compliment and has always been good for exciting conversation. To top it off, he was a local legend always with a story to tell -on and off the mic. 

  

After Jason and I had both graduated from high school, the plan was to go to college, graduate, and then get married. Anxious to start our lives together, Jason and I decided on a different plan. Without having a lot of important ducks in a row, we decided to get married one year after high school, two years for me. 

 

Jason’s High School Graduation
 
 
Hayden’s Graduation
 

We were planning a wedding Jason’s first year of college without having given much thought on the marriage or how we’d financially support ourselves. We just knew we wanted to be together. 

I’ll never forget the first time Jason’s parents came to Canyon (where Jason and I were attending college) after we got engaged. I knew, probably at least subconsciously, his parents were probably thinking of those ducks we were leaving out of row. 

Shortly after his parents arrived, Jason’s dad called me out in the hall. (Boy was I nervous.) He asked to see my ring and in few words expressed his love and support. 

I knew then that I was privileged to be gaining two awesome men in my life. 

Paul, my father-in-law is tops. He has been from the start. From making sure I held Hayden’s head stable during his first newborn bath at home to saying “You’re doing a good job” along the way when I need it the most, he’s a great help. He and my mother in law (she’s super too) are a constant support.  

To my Father-in-law:

You’re an awesome egg maker. Your steak’s not so bad either. You get creds for Hayden’s top-notch storytelling skills and the way he can strike up a conversation with any old Joe. You’re one of the men in Hallie and Rylie’s lives who serves as an example of a good man. You’re the kind of grandpa worthy of wearing the #1 Grandpa hat. You’re more fun than a barrel of monkeys. The things I see in Jason that came from you are things I’m thankful for, one example is that fun-loving nature. (You also both grow impressive facial hair). I married well when I married Jason. 

I’m thankful that getting you as a father-in-law was part of the deal. 

  

Happy Father’s Day weekend to the best Father-in-law a girl could ask for

Love is patient, love is kind… Thanks for being both.

  

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For my Dad, The Eagle

For my Dad

 

Dad and just a few of his girls
perspicacity-(noun) keenness of mental perception and understanding; discernment

I just learned that word. I sounded it out syllable by syllable.  I discovered it while searching for the symbolism of the eagle.  Let me explain.

With Father’s Day upon us I was thinking of my dad and a conversation we’ve had more than once.  We talked flying dreams and how they differed amongst dreamers. One person dreams they can fly with ease. They just levitate and then soar wherever they desire. Sounds freeing.

I’ve had several dreams about flying. The one I can remember though, was a dream where I could fly, but only on a carpet. I had to keep it with me wherever I went. I was a psychology major when I started college so I look to deeper meaning even when it’s probably not there. In my talk with my dad I concluded the “flying with aid only” dream must represent my codependent nature.

My dad said he had a flight dream, but he had to flap really hard. It was WORK.  This sent us into a conversation about birds and what kind we’d be.

Dad decided-

“I’d be a buzzard because a buzzard sails without flapping much.”

I’d never had a pleasant thought about buzzards. My buzzard sightings are usually unfortunate. I usually meet the beasts in the road feasting on road kill.  A buzzard met my windshield one time. I suspect he was being greedy after having watched all the other buzzards move off the road; either that or he had terribly slow reflexes.

My dad isn’t a buzzard. He could never be a buzzard.

He works too hard. 

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters. Colossians 3:23

Whether it was teaching us kids to ride a bike, drive a standard,or play basketball, Dad taught us to give it our all.

He wasn’t concerned that we were the best at it, just that we did our best. 

He’s unlike a buzzard, ugly up close. Dad’s a beautiful soul.  I’ve never not-thought that. Even in my moody teenage years he encompassed virtue. Integrity sums up his character. He’s a rock. He is strong with a kind heart. He’s honest; compassionate without giving to flattery. He sticks to his moral principles in times where morals shift.

If you look closely at my dad’s hand you’ll see a scar. I can’t see that it’s ever faded.  The scar comes from a serious burn from when he was little.  That scar looks exactly like an eagle.

Nope.  You’re no buzzard.

In my intent watching I insist you’re an eagle; like the buzzard they soar.  Maybe to some you do soar effortlessly. But more importantly is what you see up close. You are the embodiment of perspicacity (thought I wasn’t going to back to that, did you?).

You’re understanding is beyond compare.  Your advice is welcome and even sought after by many. This understanding is evidenced by the many that come to you to be ministered to-be it on the bus or at your shop. You seek out the downtrodden.  You’re a friend to everybody and you’re fatherly to many, but I’m lucky to call you MY dad….

I say you’re an eagle.

…those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles. Isaiah 40:31

Love you Pops!!

Happy Father’s Day


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Love the One You’re With

  
The “Middle Child” and “The Milk Guzzler” are gone. 

Hayden is on his first cruise.   He and nine other graduates (along with five sets of parents- thank goodness) are on a ship headed toward Mexico. The gulf will never know what hit it after having met Tropical Storm Bill only to turn around and meet Hayden and friends.  

I made Hayden agree to follow one rule. 

Have fun as long as what you’re doing doesn’t negatively affect the emotional or physical health of you or anyone around you. 

He thought that sounded like a lot of rules. I was proud I thought of that. 

Hallie is at my parents house. We sent her back with them after Hayden’s graduation. She’s already asked for a puppy. Days later she sends me a picture of a kitten wrapped in a blanket. She’s named him Cleo. I had to say no from four hundred miles away. Guess I should have given her and my parents a rule too. 

This means Rylie is geographically an only child this week. I was going to get a lot done this week. 

She thinks she’s in heaven, having our undivided attention. The girl has plans; plans that I’m finding, are better than the ones I had. 

When you’re with just one you can do all kinds of things that are harder to do with three. 

Rylie and I made a fort (which we forgot to take down before it rained). It was a good old fort and I got a picture of it. Now, years later, the picture will play tricks on her memory and she’ll think I was fun like that even though this is probably the first time she’s experienced an handmade outside fort (sad, huh?).

With one kid you can splurge on those Honeycrisp apples at the supermarket knowing they won’t have all been eaten before nightfall. They’re too expensive to disappear that fast. 

You can buy Rainier cherries for the same reason. I bought them yesterday and there’s still a few left. Rylie and I practiced tying the stem in a knot with it in our mouth. (I’m pretty sure Rainier cherries have shorter stems-in other words, we weren’t that successful). I put fancy fruit in my basket full of groceries and my bill was still cut in half. 

We played Scrabble. 

I taught Rylie how to start the car while we were at HEB to get the air going. With three, my mind never thinks a step ahead like that. 

We sang songs.

We took a long walk at Doornbos park and fed the ducks, a squirrel and some creepy, aggressive birds.  

   
 We made smoothies so thick and cold we gave ourselves a brain freeze; all this (except for the fort) in a day. 

I was a sucker at one of the mall kiosks. For six dollars she got to ride a horse in the mall for fifteen minutes!!  

 Moments to remember. 

Hallie’s been gone over a week. Thank goodness for texting. 

When we dropped Hayden off for his trip, we got back in the car and noticed that quiet was our new companion. Rylie, referring to her rotten big brother, said, “I’m going to miss that guy’s shenanigans”. 

Truth be told, I do too. I miss the two big ones. 

But I’m remembering how important it is to get to hang out with each one when given the chance. And even when the chance doesn’t fall in your lap to spend some time one-on-on, it’s beneficial to make time and give your kid your undivided, attention. They deserve some unfrazzled you. I’m reminded to make that happen. 

Love the one you’re with. 

And make time to be with the one you love

I’ve said, “Make time to date your man”. 

Date your kid too. 

We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today. -Stacia Tauscher

Fruit Smoothie Recipe

  

I banana

2/3 cup pineapple (or other) fruit juice

1TB (or so) Orangejuice

1 TB milk 

1 cup yogurt 

1 cup frozen fruit (So far we’ve tried mixed berry, strawberry and mango) 

A handful of ice (if you want the brain freeze). 

*I must be ill, I almost forgot the sugar. 1 (or 3) teaspoons of sugar

Put it in the blender and share with your date. 

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