Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Right in the Middle

A recent conversation with a friend and a blog I recently
read by a cyber-friend of mine who has moved & doesn't
feel "at home" in her new place had prompted
some thought
some pondering,
a gathering of thoughts that may perhaps encourage you.
(It's certainly done that for me, even as I type this.)

We've moved a lot.
I actually had to COUNT the number of addresses
we've had since we were married...
We've lived in twelve places in several states.
MN, OH, PA, IN, MI... not exactly in that order.

Some places I really, really LOVED & felt totally at home.
Some places I really, really loved... for a while...
Some places I never really liked at all.
(PLEASE note, I'm NOT talking about the PEOPLE,
I'm speaking of the town itself and/or the housing
situation we were in at the time!)
In each place we've KNOWN it was God that sent us there.

When Jesus calls us somewhere it is for ONE purpose...
His purpose!
And His purpose is all about PEOPLE!
God loves People!
and it's PEOPLE that have made the difference for me.

When I've been open,
put away my "find-the-differences-between-you-and-me Glasses",
reached out first,
stop thinking about myself 24/7,
decided to pray instead of worry about my kids,
laughed at myself,
stop getting frustrated when I was lost...again...
and just enjoyed the place God put me...
it became a place I liked.

Some of you kinda feel sorry for me because we live in Detroit.
Others of you say "respect" is the word that comes to mind.
And there's probably even more of you who think we're border-line
crazy! (oh, wait, those people probably are NOT reading this blog!)

Simply put... I'm just in the middle of God's Will.
Right where He's called us.
Not understanding everything.
Making mistakes.
But knowing with all my heart...
that I love JESUS, and what HE says GOES!
I LOVE living in Detroit!

(Note: It's coming up on our 6th yr. anniversary of
living in Detroit, 5 yrs. of being at the same residence.
THAT's a record!)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Menu Plan Monday, Mar 29, 2010

This week I'm getting my ideas from a Betty Crocker e-newsletter
than I often just ignore cuz the food is very processed, etc.
But it's my inspiration and I'll make less expensive & whole wheat
versions of many of the meals.

Lunch- Hmd Biscuits, Scrambled Eggs, Peaches
Dinner- TBA

Lunch- PB & J, Baby Carrots
Dinner- Chicken & Spring Veggie Toss (w/hmd noodles)

Lunch- Easy Skillet Meal (a variation of this link)
Dinner- Waffle Wednesday
(making w.wheat waffle batter and then everyone can make one
when they're ready for dinner & before we go in several directions)

Lunch- French Fry Salad
Dinner- Grilled Hamburgers, Homemade Mac and Cheese

Lunch- Grilled Chicken w/salsa & Corn
Dinner- Finger Food Friday, Homemade Pizza!

Dinner- Chili Quesadillas & Tossed Salad

Tentative menu for EASTER
Glazed Ham, Crock Pot Cheesy Mashed Potatoes,
Green Bean Casserole, Deviled Eggs,
Jello Salad of some sort, Cookies, etc...

For more ideas go to Organizing Junkie

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Lookin' for two things

When a Christian begins to ignore what he/she knows is right...
however small it may be (in the beginning), that person
will look for TWO things...

1. Someone else who is also choosing to disobey
(Sin likes company)

3. Someone else to blame
(so that person won't have to come to terms with the condition
of their own heart)

If this is makin you kinda mad... you may be that person.

Obeying GOD is ALWAYS best!
He LOVES you!
Don't be mad... repent & enjoy the peace of submission to GOD!

Friday, March 26, 2010

A Get-Away with My Man!

In over 20 years of marriage, Chilly & I haven't had too many
times to go away together... the two of us.
However, in the last year, because of friends & unexpected
blessings, we've had two short Florida vacations.

Just yesterday we returned from our second!
What a wonderful blessing!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

He turned 5 this week!

Max had a birthday this week.
(This is his "clown-painted face" and his
Big-Top-Tent" cake.)

For an entire year he's been asking if he could go
to Chuck E Cheese for his 5th Birthday.
So, in honor of that request, the carnival games
that Chuck E offers and the Carnival wii game
he purchased with his Birthday money from Grandma
and Papa... we had a carnival day.

And... in honor of the fact that Chuck E's food is yucky,
we ate BEFORE going & then used coupons to get
huge handfuls of coins & only play the games with
the big smiling mouse!

Here's photo update of our day earlier this week...

(The Taco Bell employee gave us SIX free drinks
with the purchase of one! We've never ALL had
our own cups before!)

Friday, March 12, 2010

What's in your head?

"For Real? Not again?"
"How am I gunna handle that, when I haven't properly handled this yet?"
"What in the world is going on?"
"I'm overwhelmed!"
"Are you even listening, God?"
"I really thought I heard You on this? Did I miss something, Lord?"
"Seriously, I need a break!"
"Is anyone listening to me?"
"I'm so alone in this."

Any of this sound familiar?

Thoughts go around & around in our head all day.
WE have to control them.

Just as we couldn't really stop a giant bird from landing
on our head, but we could keep it from building a nest there...
We cannot stop a thought from running through our brain,
but we sure can stop it from staying there.

If Jesus lives in us then we have "His divine power" to battle
thoughts that are not productive. Second Corinthians chapter
TEN says that we have what we need to battle stupid, distracting,
selfish thoughts because His power lives in us. And..
it says that "WE" must take our thoughts captive."
Jesus won't grab our thoughts and magically change them.
WE change them!

We fill our hearts (and ears and lives) with what's true,
honest, just, pure & lovely and of a good report (starting
with GOD's WORD! Phil. 4:8)...
Then we can stop ourselves from pondering the stuff
that is not beneficial.... by stopping those thoughts in their tracks
and thinking about what we know we should.

Sometimes we have to grab those thoughts a zillion times a
days. Then only a few million. Pretty soon it's only a few times
a day... and eventually we'll notice that we're not fighting that
thought pattern anymore. Sweet!

Just because something's real doesn't mean we should think
about it... Think about the true stuff in The Word.
It takes practice. It takes work.
And it WORTH it!

What's in your head?

Monday, March 8, 2010

Day off

Yesterday is our family "day-off" we try to do something together
outside of the house... together... just to make a memory or
be together without the distractions/responsibilities of home.

This is why we have a membership to the Detroit Zoo -
great fun in the warmer months...

And a membership to the Detroit Science Center-
great fun in the colder months. (This membership
just ran out & we're not gunna renew until it's cold again!)

Recently we were given a gift so that we
could purchase a membership to the Detroit Institute of Art.
I'm SO excited!!! This is a HUGE museum, and with the
membership we can just come & go, see a few things and
go home; come again another day & see more beautiful things!

So, yesterday was our day off ... and it held a little more
importance than usual since Chilly's heading off across
the ocean today. Sigh.
But It's all Good!
He's speaking at a Leaders conference in Sweden.
But the day before he leave is always poopy.
There's just no other way to say it.
Once he's on the plane I'm totally fine.
But the day before he leaves, I'm bummed.

So we tried to make the most of this Monday.
It was nearly 60 degrees here in Detroit...
that's a virtual heatwave! (people were wearing shorts!)
The park welcomed us!
Room to throw a softball.
Jungle gym bars for doing tricks
(even Mom got in on the action... sort of!)
A hill to run up & down.

Then we had a snack at Red Robin's.
It was good... I snapped a few pics on my phone.

And now... My Man boards a plane.
I'm proud of him.
I love Him.
He hears from God and follows. Period.
How can I be anything else but excited...

-Excited that My Husband loves JESUS!
-Excited that I get to be involved in the life & ministry
God's called us to do.

-And If you would like to join me by praying for him...
I'd gladly welcome that.

-And I'll be "holdin' down the fort!"
(whatever that means for a Detroit Dweller in 2010. hee hee)

Happy Tuesday!

Menu Plan Monday, Mar 8, 2010

This week my husband leaves for Sweden for a few days...
he's speaking at a pastor/leadership conference. It's always
tempting to just fix quick (junk-type) food that the kids would
love while he's gone... but I won't.
So this week... I used one of Rachael Ray's
cookbooks as inspiration. (Usually her recipes have ingredients
I never buy or that my kids would find too spicy... but she gives
me great ideas!)

Lunch- Sausage, Rice & Corn
Dinner- Scrambled Eggs & Toast

Lunch- Grilled chicken, Asperagus, Rice & Spinach Patties
Dinner- Sandwiches

Lunch- Taco Bowls, Chips
Dinner- Cheesy Roll Up

Dinner- Cowboy Spaghetti (R.R. pg. 60)

Lunch- Chili in the crock pot (last of the season)
Dinner- Homemade Pizza (maybe Calzones)

Lunch- Chili Burritos, Chips
Dinner- Messy Max's (aka- Sloppy Joes)

Lunch- TBA
Dinner- Homemade Mac & Cheese

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Never out-grow growing!

We never out-grow growing.

Just at the point we think we don't need to grow we're actually at
the exact place of needing change the most!

Sometimes we crave change...
and we fill the outer parts of our life with new:
updated clothes,
new jobs,
a different address,
interesting friends,
latest books,
more education,
higher goals,
better organization,
etc, etc, etc.

None of these are bad.

But I have to wonder how often our "change-cravings"
are really much deeper, but we try to "challenge" ourselves
with these things above...

And they usually don't satisfy us.
Frustrate, yes.
Go undone or left partically done, yeah.

But the only "change" that truly satisfied us is the
kind that JESUS works in us. And that's NEVER easy.
listening and obeying remains the ONLY way!

What is JESUS wanting to change in you?
Are you letting Him?
Are you obeying Him?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


My family teases me often because they say I talk to myself...

I prefer to think of it as "thinking out loud!" :)

Either way, here's some of the things that have been
going around in my head...
(and have probably leaked out my mouth!).

- When you compliment or criticize a child you're doing the
same thing to the parent. It's two for one... be careful.

- I really like Carbs... in a multitude of forms! sigh

-Snow is nice... but NOT in March. I'm done with it.
(and just for the record, I did NOT pray for snow much this year!)

- Can I still make lotsa soup even when warm weather hits?

- Some people spring clean... I get the urge to just paint everything.
But my schedule doesn't usually allow my springtime promptings.

- One really honest, quality conversation is WAY better than a
dozen stupid remarks about weather, snacks, traffic, etc....

- A nice, hand-written note trumps an email on most days.

- Cute glasses on cute little kids = Double SUPER cute!!!

- I really like loose tea.

- Exercise is never fun to me.

- I realized that my hair is in grave need of my hairdresser
when my 3 yr. old son volunteered to "do" my hair & grabbed a
brush and his Handy Manny TOOLS! Help, Ginger!

- Home schooling seems to get harder as spring approaches.
(are we done yet?)

- SO so thankful that daily lesson plans for my two oldest girls
are finally done & printed out! Yippee!!!

- When I sleep longer than planned I will quickly (happily)
give up my work-out and even the morning news, but not
my cuppa tea and...
NEVER my time in The Word & Being alone with JESUS!