Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Day in the Life

Over at Simple Homeschool all month has been a peek at other's days. This week it's the readers turn. So, since I love looking into how others make it all work I thought I would share a glimpse of one of our not so crazy days. Enjoy!

At 6 am the alarm goes off. No way that I am making it out of bed. Rough night. Back to sleep I go.

720 rolls around. Give cash to my love for lunch since I didn't make it. Then out to shovel snow. It's cold. Really cold.

Back inside to get ready for the day. No time for insanity since I slept in. (Is it sad when 720 is sleeping in?) Oh, and no hot water so no shower for this mama. Crazy old house.

8am Kids up. Breakfast, Bible reading, and chores.

Although while making tea I realize they sprinted through the chores. Ponder ways to get them to focus on them without being an ogre about it.

9am Start school.....on time. That's been a struggle lately with illness and appointments galore.

Get little man (age 6) set up with his school. Start to cover history with the girl (age 9) but have to stop multiple times to fix Tim's (age 2) truck, stop his mass destruction of everything, and wipe noses. Hoping some information on WW1 sunk in. :) Finish history, move on to language arts, math, science.

1030am Kids work independently for a bit. Laundry put away. Attempt to create some order from the mess that was created since breakfast. Wipe more noses and change little Tim.

11am Geography and German. Interrupted by phone call, crying baby, and potty breaks. A meltdown from Jaden ensues.....over a flag. These kids amuse me at times. He heads to bed to rest until lunch.

1230pm Lunch. Finally. Read to the kids from our current book. Maybe we'll finish it this week.

1pm Boys down for a nap. Madison finishes up her school work and moves on to crafty endeavors. Mama makes her tea and does a few tasks around the house (like starting the washer that I apparently forgot about this am). Correct school work and am surprised to find that it's all done.

Actually have a few minutes of time to myself so I get online to work on a couple things and read a few blogs. Read about the Justice Conference and wish we still lived in the States. Decide to console myself with book and yarn purchases.

330pm Outside to play in the snow.

4pm Back in to warm up. Try to figure out dinner. Not enough time for the trigona. Hmmmm.
Kids do their chores for the day then have free time.

5pm Eat....quickly.

6pm Basketball for Madison. I knit a bit. Then off to Dad's playoff games.

8pm Finally home, kids in bed, and rather than relax I prep for tomorrow's drive to Trier and the Mutterhaus for Tim's pre-surgery appointment. Hoping all the kids are on their best behavior.

And that is a peek at our life. The days are a bit crazy and full, but I love getting to live this life with my sweet ones.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Yarn Along :: February 1

Not really anything new being worked on. Still plugging away at the pillow and winding yarn. Lots of time in the hospital the next couple days though to get in some good knitting time.

I did finish Mindset for Moms and took away so much good advice. Now reading Global Soccer Mom. Hoping it gives me some practical ways to live out my passion for social justice while being mama to my sweet little ones.

Now to make sure I have all the yarn for the next couple days.

for more inspiration head to small things

Counting God's Unending Gifts :: January 30

Life right now is all full of doctor visits and basketball. But even with all of normal life sidetracked God still blesses with myriad graces.

quiet days at home
brave girl
comforting Madison
all clear to return home
doing puzzles
moving on in playoffs
late nights rocking Timothy
deep sleep
kids laughing with friends
facing anxiety......and receiving God's peace

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Yarn Along :: January 25

Still working on the pillow.....hospital stays and crazy basketball schedules tend to have a way of keeping one from knitting as much as they want. Am now making my way through Mindset for Moms by Jamie Martin. It is written in a way that I can read a quick chapter or two in my spare moments (not that there are many these days it seems).

for more inspiration head to small things.

Mother Love

Motherhood as a mission field is giving up yourself. Lay yourself down. Sacrifice yourself here, now. Cheerfully wipe the nose for the fiftieth time today. Make dinner again for the people who don't like the green beans. Laugh when your plans are thwarted by a vomiting child. Lay yourself down for the people here with you, the people who annoy you, the people who get in your way, the people who take up so much of your time that you can't read anymore. Rejoice in them. Sacrifice for them. Gain that which you cannot lose in them.
~Rachel Jankovic

Some days I want to pull my hair out teaching and training these little ones. Others I am full up with wonder at the people they are growing into. Yet, no matter what the day brings overwhelming love for them sustains me. That mother love covers the disobedience, the crankiness, the crazy with grace and joy.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Counting God's Unending Gifts :: January 23

Finding the beautiful in the crazy.......

belly laughs
little exhibitionists :)
cuddling with my little man
"perfect" daughter
no cataract surgery
cancelled practice
rain pouring down
night shift ended
friends for my girl
insurance covering oil spills (crazy German laws)
choosing to relenquish
pure joy.....only Christ
little boy with crazy defense skills

Friday, January 20, 2012

Five Minute Friday :: Vivid

One definition of vivid is this.......

perceived or felt with the freshness of immediate experience.

Normally life rushes by with me focusing on my problems, stresses, developed world issues. Then I read, hear, see a story about those who truly know what a difficult, suffering life is. I hear it in the words of our sponsored children. I see it in the videos on numerous news sites and blogs.

As the stories sink in my own selfishness, pride, arrogance become starkly vivid. Rather than moaning over the raised insurance rates or that heat was turned off for an oil refill I should be on my knees in gratitude to my Father for all He has given.

Daily His lavish love and grace for me become more and more vivid.

for more head to gypsymama.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Intentionally Slowing

Typically we scramble.....to get the chores done, finish school and meals, make it to practice and appointments on time. Constant hurry has stretched us thin. Exhaustion and illness rear their heads. Discontent with this life sets in.

But, there in the Psalms a gentle reminder. "Be still and know that I am God." And again, in Matthew. "Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest."

So a new practice is born. Schedules are reevaluated and to-do's are let go of. Pretty sure God doesn't care about the crumbs under my table as much as I do. We choose intentionally to slow, to let God direct our days.

And in the midst of the slowing beauty is found, relationship is deepened, life is peaceful and full.

Yarn Along :: January 18

from yesterday....quite a bit more finished after little one's went to bed

Still plugging away at both the pillow and Today Matters. Working on getting all my yarn wound and cutting yarn for my sweet girl's pom-pom scarf. (cutting yarn into 42 foot sections is a pain.) Hopefully by knitting in the spare moments the projects will be done by the end of January.

For more inspiration head over to small things.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Counting God's Unending Gifts :: January 16

Even in the busy, the unplanned God continues to pour out blessings.....

little ones prayers
nerf sword fights
light reflecting on water
first class success
long walks
collecting "artifacts"
laughing long and hard with friends
sun pouring in windows
peaceful school day
chatting with Grandma

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Least of These......

As I was attempting to corral the little man, straighten the upstairs, and accomplish a zillion other tasks the doorbell rang. Now we don't know a whole lot of people yet and none who would just stop by unexpectedly so I was a bit frustrated at the interruption to my day.

I opened the door to find a man standing there asking if I would like to buy some Christmas cards. The money would go to the disabled so they wouldn't have to work in the factories. It would provide security and a safe job. It would be a blessing for them to be free from that environment. It would have cost me less than $10 (US). Yet, all I saw was inconvenience. Because this interruption wasn't in my plan the man was turned away. And as I closed the door all I heard in my heart was....

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Ouch. My own hypocrisy stared me in the face. In our family we work diligently to serve those who have less than, who need the extra we can give whether it be time, money, care. But in that moment I chose to turn away a chance to serve because it didn't fit my plan.

If I truly care about those who live in oppression, in poverty, in hopelessness than I need to be willing to move and serve even if it isn't on my to-do list for the day. Being an example to my children, being Christ's hands and feet are some of my deepest desires. And so I must surrender to Christ and His plans even if it looks like an inconvenience.

The next time someone knocks on that door I'll be ready.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


At the end of 2011 I sat, thought, planned. Decisions were made on what to work on for the new year. Goals were planned out. And then......

Life intervened.

Nothing bad, but it became clear that goals and plans that I had made must be revisited, changed. And this time I must set aside my desires for Christ's.

It has not been easy this letting go, the un-planning of a year. Yet in the surrendering, in the giving in peace has been found.

And so a new habit for the year has emerged.......one of surrender, of letting Christ guide our days rather than the schedule.

There is joy in the un-planning.

Yarn Along :: January 11

No real knitting done this week.....too busy planning for classes. Did get some reading of Today Matters done though. Great book with very helpful advice. Hopefully it makes our days run a bit more smoothly.

One question.....any ways of winding yarn into a ball without it getting tangled. Tried to wind some this past week with my daughter and it was a mess.

For more inspiration head over to small things.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Counting God's Unending Gifts :: January 9

It's been a beautiful start to a new year....praying it continues to be one of peace and contentment.

beautiful girl turning 9 (too big too fast)
aggressive basketball playing
big smiles
treating the little ones because we can
stepping out of comfort zone
teaching a class
illness that allows rest

a new addition.....Oakley the cat
new pillows
unexpected gifts
falling down hugs
one crazy two year old and his sloppy kisses

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Yarn Along :: January 4

Apparently revamping our daily routine has allowed for more pockets of time to fit in bits of knitting and reading for this mama. Such a lovely way to restore my soul on those weary days. But I digress....in those stolen moments doll number two has been finished aside from stuffing and I have cast on for my dear girl's new pillow. (She was so cute picking out the yarn....so much excitement.) And I've begun reading The 10-Second Rule by Clare De Graaf. (Yay for unexpected gifts!) It has been a very easy read and a good reminder at the start of a new year. Now to go correct some lessons and hopefully find some more time to work on that pillow.

For more inspiration head to small things.

A New Beginning

2011 was a crazy year. It was full of new experiences, major stress, absences and homecomings (multiple times), a move across the world, and change....lots of it. Trying to go from one crisis to another and adjust to the curve balls that life kept throwing kept me from living in an intentional, simple, God-honoring way.

Anger, resentment, busyness, irritation took center stage. There was no time for enjoying relationship with family or Christ. Shortcuts were taken. Rather than live the way I feel led I took the easy way out. And in the end our whole family suffered.

All I could focus on this past year was me.....how I was feeling, how unfair life was, etc. Not good.

This year, Lord willing, my aim is to focus on what truly matters.....faith, relationship, simple and intentional living. My precious family needs a happy, peaceful, content mama. Not some ogre who stomps around bemoaning life.

On that note I have chosen two words for this year to help me continually work towards my main focus.

Grace and Present.

Grace for myself and those around me. Being present in the moment....not looking ahead constantly to the next thing.

Life is fleeting. I want to fully live this life God has blessed me with. So I intend to work (with God's help) towards living a graceful life present in all the moments for 2012.

What is your word(s) for this coming year?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Counting God's Unending Gifts :: January 3

So thankful that the year may change, but Christ is never changing. Continuing the counting of His unending graces to our family.

unexpected time off
breaks from all sports for two weeks
finishing books
celebrating His birth
family coming together
epic Risk battles
a fresh start
watching my love hobble after running 13.1 miles :)
creating new spaces to relax
no snow.....just rain (I have never in my life been so thankful for weird weather patterns)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!!

As we move into the new year most set goals, make plans, and set impossible resolutions. Praying that as we do we will seek God's will and realize that He is continually molding us. Have a blessed New Year!