Romans 12:1-2

So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. Romans 12:1-2

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Daybook - 1.29

Outside my window… lots of sunshine! It’s in the 70s today….and will ice and snow this coming Tuesday!

I am thankful for… notes and phone calls of encouragement

I am wearing… adidas warm-up suit – white, navy and lime green

Some plans for the rest of the week… Parent/Teacher conferences Tues. night (4), haircut on Friday, spending as much time with Dad as I can.

I am hoping … well planning for it too – to get some more activity in this week and not to eat so much chocolate (since it won’t be sitting in front of me all day at a workshop!)

On my mind… things that need to get done for school/work, juggling responsibilities, planning for food

Hearing…. J. scratching on the window because I haven’t gotten up and let her in yet, neighbors riding by on bikes.

I am praying for……. timing and comfort. Mostly for Dad not to be in pain.

From the kitchen….. not much! Salsa chicken that needs to be eaten for dinner.

Around the house…Hubby and the boys have been doing great at keeping up with everything when I’m not here and I’m trying to do a few things each chance I get.

One of my favorite things… a slightly different schedule this past week, my new daily reading Bible – I read it to Dad to last night.

From my picture journal…
From about a week and a half ago. Notice the snowball splat on the window.

To view more daybooks visit Simple Woman's Daybook.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Counting Our Blessings 1.25.11

This past week has not been an easy week. On Wednesday night we found out that my Dad has several metastasized tumors throughout his abdomen. Yesterday, we met with his doctor to discuss comfort care. I’m glad to say that it has not been difficult though to obey 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18: "Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.” That being said that doesn’t mean that I am not grieved…

96. I am blessed to have a God who sees and knows me.
"You've kept track of my every toss and turn through the sleepless nights, Each tear entered in your ledger, each ache written in your book." Psalm 56:8 The Message

97. My Dad is a Believer and unless there is a miracle he will be reunited in heaven with my Mom and most importantly see Jesus face to face.

98. I have said this often in blog posts, we are immensely blessed by the quality care my Dad has received at the Veteran’s Center. I know that isn’t always the case when loved ones are in nursing facilities.

99. Hubby has been wonderful to care for me this week.

100. Although not easy, our boys are doing great. We have purposely not shielded them from death or truth (developmentally appropriate of course) for times such as this.

101. Support from family, friends, and coworkers.

102. Getting to spend extra time with my sister.

103. During that time with Aunt (shopping) finding a dress for a formal dinner and two pairs of shoes for $35!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Daybook - Jan. 23

Outside my window… there’s just a little snow left from last Thurs. morning – in the flower bed, on the yards where the sun doesn’t hit as much and on rooftops, the icy sidewalks are even gone (the ice not the sidewalks!).

I am thankful for… about an hour “away” time – first with Hubby and then time to myself reading a magazine

I am wearing… gray corduroy pants, black ¾ sleeve shirt with plum leaves print

Some plans for the rest of the week… meeting with Dad’s doctor, training for work, a dinner Friday night for Hubby’s work.

I am hoping (and praying)… that everyone’s sore throats, headaches and sniffles go away and don’t turn into anything.

On my mind… Dad, the meeting Monday with his doctor to discuss comfort care.

Hearing…. the dog barking, heater kicking on, boys in the shower.

I am praying for……. Dad

From the kitchen….. leftover ham, chili or turkey. Wendy’s for lunch after church

Around the house… things to put away – always! At least it’s clean laundry and clean dishes this time.

One of my favorite things… Quiktrip!

From my picture journal…

To view more daybooks visit Simple Woman's Daybook.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Heaven is for Real

We bought my uncle the book, Heaven is For Real, for his Christmas present. We've never done this before, but Hubby had started reading it before he brought it home. A couple of nights later I found Hubby asleep on the couch with the book across him. I very quietly and gently removed the book from Hubby and then sat in front of the fireplace and read it from cover to cover. Yes, after Hubby finished it we did give it to my uncle.
Since then, Aunt and my friend, J. have gotten copies and read it. Our own copy came from Hubby's parents a few days ago - M. and L. want to read it. Aunt blogged about it at Requirements today. Check it out or the book website, if you'd like.
Sometimes, when people describe near death experiences, there is always a hint of doubt in my mind at some things. However, I know this family to be a solid Christian family and very Biblically based. I sat by the author in a college class. An aunt and an uncle of Colton (the boy in the book) were in Hubby's and my wedding. Heaven is for Real is wonderfully written and just amazing!
I am one who has lost two babies to ectopic pregnancy & miscarriage, I was with my Mom when she gasped for her last breath and now am standing at the same threshold with my Dad. When I read the book about a month ago, it tremendously touched my heart and ministered to me. I plan to read it again soon.
One thing that stands out in Colton's description of Heaven is that "Jesus really loves children". If you love children, have lost a child, or your heart is longing for Heaven, your true home, I recommend reading this book.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Why I Love a Snow Day

I was kind of expecting to be out of school today. Yesterday, I had all my students take their reading books home (not the normal night) - I'm hoping they all used them today to keep from getting bored! The true teacher in me was hoping for a Snow Day and when Hubby checked his phone at 6am this morning, he confirmed we were out and I rolled over and went back to sleep for a few more hours.

All day, laundry and papers to grade beckoned me, but I had fun with the boys instead. L. worked on (and completed) his school project. Hubby brought me a sweet tea while he was between work sites. M. played outside which inspired me to walk to the park with the boys. They wrestled. We walked home in silence (almost silence - one boy was whimpering). The boys and I (mostly them) made sugar cookies - all I had were Easter cookie cutters. I made a pot of chili (what could be more perfect for a snow day?) M. has been reading most of the day and this evening we all looked at their new study Bibles. They are so excited to start using them!

I found out about 30 minutes ago that we are out of school tomorrow too. Well, I wasn't expecting that! I had JUST finished my plans (including printing them) for next week. Oh, well. I know what my mentor teacher would say, "That's what arrows are for!"

Maybe I'll get the laundry done and papers graded tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Counting Our Blessings 1.18.11

88. Starbucks with a friend

89. 3 months of going to the gym for a super cheap price

90. A place for L. to be before school starts in the mornings (friend MWF )

91. An air purifier (our allergies have been so much better!)

92. A sermon on time (and an honest reflection on how I use mine).

93. Good smelling lotions!

94. An opportunity to work with L. on how to study his Bible (my best time spent for sure!)

95. A three day weekend (including a day to sleep in, lunch out with Aunt and boys, visiting Dad, grocery shopping and laundry for me and yogurt and a movie for the boys with Aunt - basically time to do what we want).

J with the air purifier (it's the only picture I had of the blessings I listed!)

Check out more blessings at A Homemaker's Heart.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Daybook - January Week 2

Outside my window… ???? This doesn’t really change a whole lot. There’s a wood snowman that probably should be put away soon and I noticed today that there are weeds in the flower bed. How’d that happen in this cold, cold weather?

I am thankful for… lots of fun activities, opportunities, provision and a day to sleep in.

I am wearing… black corduroy pants, black cashmere sweater with black, gray and red argyle pattern

Some plans for the rest of the week… tomorrow off school and to see Dad, L’s pinewood derby and M’s basketball game.

I am hoping… to exercise Tuesday and Thursday morning.

On my mind… The Toby Mac concert Friday night. I’m not too old to enjoy his music. However, Brandon Heath was much more my style. I loved it that even though TM’s style is hip hop it was always clear that his focus is God.

Hearing…. M practicing his trumpet, dog sighing, Hubby’s keyboard clicking

I am praying for……. A friend’s upcoming surgery, another friend facing a transition

From the kitchen….. ham, stuffing, broccoli, and cantaloupe for Saturday night dinner and chicken and wild rice for our small group dinner.

Around the house…Those Christmas decos did make in to the totes thanks to Hubby! There’s countless loads of laundry in the hallway outside the laundry room and streaming into the dining room.

One of my favorite things… a wonderful weekend visit from friends and being a part of a small group at church.

From my picture journal…

To view more daybooks visit Simple Woman's Daybook.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Counting Our Blessings 1.11.11

This is part of Counting Our Blessings hosted by Tamara at A Homemaker's Heart. Check out her blog and consider joining in every Tuesday!

This is my first Tuesday back since Christmas. Wow, are we abundantly blessed every day and even more so throughout the Christmas season or what?!!

83. God's grace is immeasurable and He pours it out on us every day.

84. The ability to walk. I'm wearing a pedometer now and I'm amazed at how many steps I can get in on a regular basis (though it's not an excuse not to exercise - just a little encouragement along the way!)

85. A wonderful supervisor. Last week when Dad was in the hospital she let me leave right after my children left instead of waiting for 30 more minutes until the end of our day.

86. A fireplace.

87. The Christmas decorations did jump back in all those totes sitting around the house! The blessing is Hubby - his willingness to serve and his dedication to keeping our household going.

Monday, January 10, 2011

A New Blogger in the Family

My sister started a blog for the New Year. From time to time I've written about our Dad here - she posted an excellent post about him at her new blog, Requirements. It said:

"I visited my dad at the hospital today. He was doing much better since his blood transfusion on Monday. I've been posting updates on his progress on my facebook page. Tonight, one of my cousins posted a very encouraging comment and I wanted to share part of it. She wrote "He knows you, you're part of him and the heart never forgets no matter what the brain says!" Dad has Alzheimer's. Most of the time he doesn't remember who I am or thinks I'm one of his sisters. Tonight when I asked him if he needed anything he responded, "Just you." I asked, "Who am I?" He replied, "You're you!" I said, "You're right! I always have been!" I know he's still "Dad" in his heart. I really appreciated my cousin's post. It brought to mind a verse I remember studying several years ago. It is Proverbs 4:23, from the New International Version. "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." Dad is confused a lot and sometimes what he says may not make sense, but I know his wellspring is still flowing."

Often times, my sister will post about what she's reading and studying. She's a voracious reader. You can also see the NASA photo of the day on her blog. Please check it out sometime.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Daybook - Jan. 7

Outside my window… darkness. Weather’s getting ready to change. Do we have any hope of a snow day Monday?

I am thankful for… Dad being out of the hospital. Dinner out and conversation with Hubby.

I am wearing… jeans, black turtleneck and school tshirt (yay! for Fridays)

Some plans for the rest of the week… a small group leader meeting, 3 soccer games, a concert and a weekend visit from wonderful friends!

I am hoping… to get a little more motivated and excited about the new year.

On my mind…the past week with Dad. He ended up at a local small town hospital for an emergency blood transfusion. Some who heard he went there were concerned, but I’m thankful he went there. They actually took the time to run further tests and figure out what was wrong (he had a transfusion at the big city hospital in September). The nurse he had really cared – she asked what branch of the military Dad served in and when she figured out it was his grandsons he was asking for, she suggested I sign the “waiver” and bring the boys to see him. He’s back at the VA now. Aunt went to visit (and took the boys) tonight.

Hearing…. the dog stretching, Hubby clicking and tapping on the computer.

I am praying for…….Hubby’s safety as he continues to pursue dream of flying (working on instrument rating). Also praying that I work up the courage to fly with him (I’ve been twice and it really isn’t something I’m that crazy about).

From the kitchen….. My favorite deli tonight. Chicken and sweet potatoes tomorrow night.

Around the house…The totes are still waiting for Christmas decorations! I promise I’m going to work on it as soon as I finish this post – and now I have the motivation of company coming.

One of my favorite things… a good night’s rest, cards in the mail, playing games with my boys.

From my picture journal… One of the highlights of our Christmas trip to ABQ was getting together with old friends.

To view more daybooks visit Simple Woman's Daybook.

Happy Birthday J.

Yesterday was Hubby's brother J's 40th birthday. However, this post is about our dog J. Six years ago yesterday J. came to live in our house. We decided that was the day we would celebrate as her "birthday".

We got J. at the animal shelter in Albuquerque. We were especially excited to find that she was already house trained! J. was a great dog right from the beginning and always very protective of the boys. Don't get me wrong, she gets into her share of normal dog mischief. Like last night for instance. The boys and I went to hear Danny Cahill, Biggest Loser Season 8 speak. Since we were only going to be gone a few hours, I left J. in the house. This is what I came home to...

She had about 7 lollipops for her birthday "dinner"! Last year, I posted birthday pictures of each boy so they thought it would a great idea for me to post pictures of J. too.

Right now, J. is snoring - asleep in the office floor. That's usually where she is and what she's doing when I blog. We love our baby girl. Happy Birthday J!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Daybook - Jan. 2

Outside my window…a breeze, dry winter grass, sunshine, the boys playing basketball in the driveway.

I am thankful for… 16 whole days off work (including weekends). Why is it that 7 o’clock used to be normal, but in a short break it is now “early”?

I am wearing… sorta black pants, purple/gray sweater

Some plans for the rest of the week… boys’ activities, a class starts for Hubby. For me – putting away Christmas decorations.

I am hoping… that all the Christmas decorations find their own way back to the boxes!

On my mind…A new year – the need to get back on track in many areas including eating right and exercising.
Hearing….M & L arguing about basketball

I am praying for…….Dad – didn’t get sick from being at our house, but a few weeks later is ill. He’s been on IV antibiotics for an infection and IV liquids for dehydration.

From the kitchen….. a new chili recipe with black beans, white chipotle corn and bbq sauce!

Around the house…All the totes for the decorations. Newly painted dining room, master bath AND kitchen!

One of my favorite things… when the boys don’t argue.

From my picture journal…
The Plaza, Old Town Albuquerque. Christmas Eve.

To view more daybooks visit Simple Woman's Daybook.