Saturday, April 28, 2007

Get Your Tissues

I just figured out how to add music to my site. I've enjoyed everybody's lists so much, I decided to do it, too. The song that plays first is an older one by Mark Shultz, and you probably have heard it. It is a heart-rending song of a daddy praying for his son. This song meant so much to me during the times of Matt's heart surgeries (and still does), but also it continues to remind me of my prayers for Ben as he battles autism. The first time I heard this I was driving, and I almost had to pull off the road. It SO mirrored my prayers that it took my breath away, and I just sobbed. I also think that every parent can sympathize as well, because which one of us wouldn't want to take a physical or emotional pain for our children so they don't have to hurt? This song is really every parent's cry at some time. Here are the lyrics:

I'm down on my knees again tonight
I'm hoping this prayer will turn out right
See there is a boy that needs Your help
I've done all that I can do myself
His mother is tired I'm sure You can understand
Each night as he sleeps She goes in to hold his hand
And she tries not to cry As the tears fill her eyes

CHORUS: Can You hear me? Am I getting through tonight?
Can You see him? Can You make him feel all right?
If You can hear me Let me take his place somehow
See, he's not just anyone He's my son

Sometimes late at night I watch him sleep
I dream of the boy he'd like to be
I try to be strong and see him through
But God who he needs right now is You
Let him grow old Live life without this fear
What would I be Living without him here
He's so tired and he's scared Let him know that You're there

Can You hear me? Can You see him? Please don't leave him He's my son

Thursday, April 26, 2007

A Quick, Random Thought

I'm planning on writing something soon, but until then, here's a little fact that I found amusing...At three minutes and four seconds after 2 AM on the 6th of May this year, the time and date will be 02:03:04 05/06/07. This will never happen again!

You don't even have to comment...but I thought it was cute! =o)

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Show and Tell...Saturday (?)

Even though I missed Show and Tell Friday, I didn't think anybody would mind if I extended it to Saturday. =o)

This was my grandparents grandfather clock. I have loved this clock since I was a little girl. My grandparents lived in Wisconsin, and we lived in Louisiana, so I'd only get to their home once a year at most, but I distinctly remember the layout of the house, the special smell of that house, and...the chimes from this clock. As my grandparents grew older, I remember one of my aunts commenting that, one day, all she wanted from their house was this clock. I never, as a grandchild, thought that I could ever have it, but when I heard that comment, I remember thinking, "Oh well. So much for that." Years later when my grandparents passed, my other aunt called me to see if I was interested in having this clock! Now, I never had mentioned to anybody (including my mom), that I loved this clock. I was excited, but I was so surprised that the other aunt didn't want it. Sure enough, she didn't. So, now I have the clock!! It is such a special piece of memory for me. Isn't God good? He gives you more than you can hope or imagine, and even the little wishes count. It chimes every 15 minutes and on the hour and has such a nice sound. It will be a wonderful piece to pass from generation to generation.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A Stress Free Life

We talked about this in my women's cell group and then at church. It's pretty good, so I thought I'd share some of my notes on this. I need to process it MUCH more, so the best thing for me to do is blog it!! =o)

Is a stress free life possible? Well, it's what God wants for us. Take a look at a familiar scripture, but in the Message Bible:

Matthew 11:28 -30
Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly.

Wow! I like that version of this scripture. I know the Message isn't the most "accurate" translation, but boy, it can sure get an idea across!

The first step to a stress free life is "Come to me." If we are stressed, the first thing we need to check is are we going to Him, or are we allowing our busyness or circumstances to keep us from Him? He is where we find peace, joy, strength, etc.... No wonder we can quickly stress out when we don't take the time to spend with Him. Just daily routine can quickly zap the joy and pile on the stress, not to mention when a "monkey wrench" gets thrown in the routine! Our pastor always says to make an unbreakable appointment with God...and keep it! So, in order to live above the stress line, we must take time to run to God, lay everything at His feet, and let Him "watch our backs".

To be continued....

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Happy 14th Birthday Beth!

(Beth surfing at Universal in January)

My baby turned 14 yesterday. (Sniff!) For her birthday I gave her a surprise shopping spree. There isn't a mall in the area we live, so we have to drive a bit to get to one. She knew we were going to the mall, but what she didn't know was that we were picking up 3 of her friends on the way. She also didn't know I was giving her a gift visa card once we got there. AND she didn't know that I was letting them shop without my worthy assistance. I headed off in my own direction. She had a great time and got a lot of new clothes, which she really needed. (I also got the reaction I was hoping for...that drop-jawed look when she got her visa.) It went later than I thought, so I wound up taking everybody out to dinner at The Olive Garden. She said it had been her best birthday yet. =o)

I still can't believe she is going to high school next year....

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

"Real Mums"

Ashley tagged me to do this "Real Mums" post. I've been reading some awesome posts on this, so I must admit to being a bit intimidated....but here goes:

(as I'm typing these, I realize it is a bit heavy...sorry! I have 3 wonderful kids, 2 of which have special needs in one way or some of this is spilling out here)

A real mom lets her 7 year old child sleep in bed with her because he needs the security.

A real mom lets her child sleep in bed with her because he could have easily grown up in heaven instead of earth, so he can stay with her until he is 18 if he wishes.

A real mom summons the strength to turn her child over to the surgeon 3 times his first year of life so he can live, even though she wants to die from the hurt of having to do so.

A real mom always watches for blueness in her child's lips and fingers (without seeming to do so) while letting him participate in normal activities even though she is sometimes afraid.

A real mom studys for hours with her child so he can pass a test because he can't focus in class.

A real mom cries when she realizes her child will always have problems making friends.

A real mom prays for God to send a real friend to her child even though he is unable to be a typical friend, and then rejoices when it actually happens, to her utter amazement.

A real mom spends hours on the phone and internet researching what will help her child best thrive with a condition that seems completely hopeless to combat and then turns life around to do it.

A real mom does her best to make her "regular" child not feel left out in the wake of all the special needs.

A real mom stays up past midnight talking with her child when she has a personal crisis.

A real mom cries when she realizes her child is heading to high school.

A real mom has melt downs sometimes.

A real mom believes that God will perform miracles in her children.

A real mom takes a nap for her own sanity and the sanity of her children.

A real mom gives her child that last yummy bite of her favorite food.

A real mom apologizes to her children when she is wrong.

And mostly, a real mom cries out to God for wisdom to raise her children.

I'm not sure who to tag because I think most of you have already been tagged. I know I can tag Tonja and Nancy. Have any of you not been tagged yet? Let me know and I'll gladly tag you!

Isn't He Sweet?!

Josh brought these home for me today. It's our 15th anniversary today! Although we are comfortable and "used to each other", I love him more today than ever before. He is a wonderful man, he loves the Lord with all his heart, he's an awesome dad, and he is a great friend.

(Can somebody tell me how I can put words above a picture? I keep trying, but the blog won't let me.)

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A Little about Me

I enjoyed reading these on several blogs, so I thought I'd do one today. I copied this from Trella's blog (hope ya don't mind!).

01. What time is it? 1:40 pm
02. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? The Nativity
03. Diamonds or Pearls? Diamonds
04. What is your favorite TV show? Extreme Home Makeover
05. What did you have for breakfast? a hard boiled egg
06. What is your middle name? Helen
07. What is your favorite cuisine? melted Mexican cheese for chips
08. What foods do you dislike? liver, brussel sprouts, etc...
09. What are your favorite chips? Sun Chips
10. What is your favorite CD at the moment? Leeland (it has the song "Carried to the Table" that really, really touched me)
11. What kind of car do you drive? Mercury Villager
12. Favorite Sandwich? chicken sandwich with bacon and cheddar cheese from Chili's or Cracker Barrel
13. What are characteristics you can't stand? undependable, untruthful
14. What are your favorite clothes? my nightgown at the end of the day =o)
15. If you could go anywhere on vacation, where would you go? back to Disney World
16. Where would you want to retire? somewhere cooler than Louisiana
17.Favorite time of day? late at night
18. Where were you born? Kansas City, Missouri
19. What is your favorite sport to watch? Football...especially the Saints or LSU
20. Coke or Pepsi? Coke! Coke! and more Coke!
21. Beavers of ducks? hmmmm.... how bout penguins
22. Are you morning person or a night owl? night owl
23. Pedicure or manicure? pedicure
24. What did you want to be when you were little? a teacher
25. What is your best childhood memory? a vacation to Disney World with my parents and best friend. We had sooooo much fun.
26. Ever been to Africa? no
27. Ever been toilet papering? No (I helped plan one, though, but "couldn't" participate)
28. Been in a car accident? Yes, but nothing too serious
29. Favorite day of the week? Saturday
30. Favorite Restaurant? The Melting Pot, Chili's, good Mexican....anything to not cook!
31. Favorite flower? rose
32. Favorite ice-cream? chocolate chip
33. Favorite fast food restaurant? Chick-fil-a or Canes
34. How many times did you fail your drivers' test? passed the first time
35. From whom did you get your last E-mail? somebody from one of my heart e-mail loops
36. Which store would you chose to max out your credit card? long as somebody else is paying the bill!!
37. Last person you went to dinner with? my friend and principal of the school I teach at
38. What are you listening to right now? nothing...silence is golden
39. What is your favorite color? purple
40. How many tattoos do you have? none
41. How many are you sending this e-mail to? I am not e-mailing this
42. Favorite magazine? Quick Cooking....but now it's called Simple and Delicious
43. Coffee or Tea? tea but only if it is iced and pre-sweetend
44. Do you tan easily or burn easily? burn and freckle
45. Do you color your hair? yes...I was born blond and plan to stay that way
46. What was the first car you ever purchased without the help of your parents? the Mercury Villager I now drive
47. What is your most dreaded household chores? dishes
48. Do you like life? yes, but I want it to slow down
49. Is there anyone that you just can't stand? yes, but I really am working on that because I don't like that I feel that way
50. Are you anxious about tomorrow? I try not to be

Monday, April 9, 2007

Thinking Blogger Award

This was awarded to me by my good friend Trella at Word of Truth Christian Academy. I've only just begun blogging, so I was very touched that she nominated me. Her blog was one of two that I read daily, and I enjoyed it so much, I decided to give it a try.

So now, in turn, I will award 5 others for this award. It comes from The Thinking Blogger, so if I gave this award to you and you'd like to participate, go check out that blog for the rules on participating.

1. My friend George's blog "The Secret Place of Elyon" I've been checking out his blog for a long time. He has been battling cancer, and his blog has been such a testimony of his love to God and God's love to Him.

2. My friend Tonja's blog "Raising Eagles" She is a friend from college and has always had a deep love for the Lord and great wisdom and insight.

3. My friend Nancy's blog "Are We Having Fun Yet?" Nancy and I are friends who have "never met". We met in the "heart world" online. Both of us have a child with a major congenital heart defect. Her child, Jessica, has a terminal condition. Nancy is so much fun and positive through it all, and I have very much enjoyed her blog.

4. I also wanted to award Ash's blog "Life is a Fairy Tale Written by God's Fingers". She has been so encouraging to me since I've started, and I've enjoyed her blog immensely.

5. And I must award this back to Trella, even though she gave it to me. I wouldn't be blogging if it weren't for enjoying her blog so much. She also introduced me to all of her blogging friends, who I have really enjoyed.

I've met a whole bunch of new friends through this blog, and I really enjoy each blog. They are all unique and have great humor and godly wisdom. Please visit each one of the blogs I've listed in my "Blogs I visit daily". Each one of them deserve all the awards around. It IS hard to pick when all are so deserving and you don't want to leave anybody out or hurt anybody's feelings. So, thanks to are ALL awesome!!

Friday, April 6, 2007

Happy Easter!

Ben (12) at MGM at Disney

(I can't get my post to skip I've color coded. Anybody know why this is happening?)

It is Friday, and I am glad. It is time for Easter holiday. No homework for a week. Yahooooo!! I know everybody starts dragging this time of the year, but I feel so worn out as far as school goes. My middle child, Ben, is autistic. He is very high functioning, but he is not an independent learner. He "spaces" out during class, and really seems to miss a lot. His reading comprehension is terrible, and I think it's mostly due to lack of focus, because he can read the words and not have a clue about what he just read. It's also processing....which is what autism is all about. We have to work hard at home after school is over just to keep up. We are BOTH so sick of homework that summer can't come quick enough. All the kids go to the Christian school I teach at which has no resource room. So, we make do with some accommodations. He's so smart, but it gets buried under all that processing. This is one of those areas I struggle to leave at the cross, and it's definitely one of my "joy-zappers". I working on that....
I was praying yesterday, thanking God for sending His Son. God reminded me that every drop of blood that Jesus shed was for a purpose. Every drop signifies a promise, a victory, an overcoming. I prayed that I would not allow one drop of that precious blood to be wasted...that I would fulfill the destiny God has for me...that I would claim every single thing that that blood purchased for me. Jesus already paid the price, so I sure don't want any of it to be wasted.
I hope everybody has a great Easter weekend. We are going to my parents house for a crawfish boil. It has become a wonderful tradition that I plan to keep. However, we have a cold front right now, and the high tomorrow is only 58!! Now, I realize that some of you live in the north, and that is warm for you....and, for that matter, the thought of a crawfish boil is alarming! However, us Louisianaians LOVE our crawfish!! Not to mention that it is supposed to be a lot warmer than 58 in April. However, I'll eat crawfish in any weather!!
Have a blessed Easter!

Monday, April 2, 2007

Joy of the Lord #4

I just wanted to say how much I've enjoyed meeting everybody who has stopped by my blog. It's been wonderful getting to know everybody! I am now making my daily rounds to many different blogs and thoroughly enjoying all of the posts.

I wanted to post point #4 about the joy of the Lord because this is the point that REALLY hit home for me. It must be where I am at the moment and where I need to focus. I have found that rewriting and rephrasing these points for others to follow has helped me tremendously to process and retain it all....which was my hope from the get-go. =o)

#4 Enjoy the Process

I've mentioned it before, but we must remember that ALL THINGS, be it "good" or "bad" are working together for us...for God to form character in us, for us to conquer the enemy, for us to grow in strength and faith, etc.... And, you know, I can live with that. However, I'm not so sure about "enjoying the process". Is that really necessary??? Isn't sheer obedience enough?

Well, obedience is a start, but we can't park there. At first obedience is a good step, but do we really give it our all just because of obedience? It might carry some weight at first, but eventually I tire out of doing it "because it is right" and begin to "go through the motions". But, when my passion gets involved, THEN I do things because I want to, and I have energy and desire to do it the best of the best...not just get it done.

Joseph spent time in the prison and the palace. He excelled in both places. Now, I can't imagine he LOVED being in the prison, but at some point he moved beyond obedience to give it his all. I've got to learn to give whatever growth situation I am in my all, regardless of where I consider it puts the prison or the palace. It's kind of like hearing God say, "Until you enjoy cleaning the toilets, you're not going to be released from it." Why? Because I'm not giving the situation my best...I'm merely existing until it's over.

Being upset and worrying about it won't add anything to life. So, even in stressful situations, I am trying to learn to stop and laugh at the situation...knowing God is in control. Worrying won't help, anyway. I can't see the "big picture", so I am trying to count it all joy....even when I don't understand.

Lord, help me to embrace what you have for me, even when I don't understand. Let me laugh as I learn to follow Your process in my life. Don't let me get stuck just obeying, but let me find joy in the passion of pursuing Your ways and leaving mine behind.

So, anyway, I don't know if that makes any sense to anybody else. It's probably still obvious I'm processing that step. I guess I need to laugh as I sort it out. =o)