Friday, October 29, 2010

The Joy and Humility of Giving

I wish I could take a picture and show you. But a picture is only worth a thousand words, and it would take so many more to describe what I witnessed today.

This afternoon my heart ached with emotions as I watched a group of inner-city, high-school football players practically inhale food (their pre-game meal). These kids go to a school that is at the bottom of the totem pole of the county schools. You know how at most schools all the kids get new laptops, etc? These kids don't. You know how football fields shine so bright at night with the lights? These kids' don't. You know how football teams love to win a game? These kids haven't won a game in 20 years.

I don't know their home-lives, but I overheard today that some of them stay after school and work to help their families pay the rent. I've heard several times "all these kids get to eat is fast food."

Yesterday I baked 6 doz. rolls and 5 Angel Food Cakes, from scratch. This morning and afternoon 2 other ladies and I made the rest of what would be a "full-spread" meal: chicken topped with bacon, mashed potatoes & gravy, green beans, and strawberries (to go on the cake with Cool Whip). Then we hauled it all over to the high school and served it to the football team (an outreach ministry of our church). It was hard work, work that I enjoyed. And seeing what our efforts went towards was priceless.

These verses keep going around and around in my head this evening:

35For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me. ... 40bTruly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me." ~ Matthew 25:35-36, 40b

When was the last time I did this? When was the last time I served the Master? He has gifted me with the talent of cooking and baking (and enjoying doing it), why don't I share it with others more often?

I am speechless. I have no more words.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

God vs. Blogging

I have posts floating around in my head (that I really should write down at least the main gist of) that I really want to sit down and write.


I heard something from the Relevant'10 Conference the other day that is keeping me from it.

(I'm keepin' it real here, folks.)

No, I didn't attend Relevant. Now I wish I had taken time to learn more about what it was (going to be) and go. It was in PENNSYLVANIA of all places! Just a few hours drive and I could've met and fellowshipped with so many of the ladies that have inspired and encouraged me in my walk with the Lord, my role as Daniel's wife, my role as Susannah's mama, and of course saving money ;) I think I would like to go next year. How I did hear what I heard was from about the last 20 minutes of Crystal Paine's speech streaming live.

Those last 20 minutes were jam packed with bullet points that hit you "right there" and you know she has dug into your "real" life and is speaking I wish I could've heard the whole thing. Of every session. (Then again, I might have come away so full of bullet holes that there wouldn't be anything left...)

Ok, so enough beating around the bush. What did she say?

"If you don't have time for God you don't have time to blog."

And with that, I'd best get my behind off-a here. Because I haven't specifically spent time with my God yet today.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Susannah and her Kitty

Susannah loves our cats :) They are mostly outdoor cats, but a few of them are allowed inside sometimes. If she hears a cat meowing, she is all ears and eyes, looking for where the kitty is. Most of them will come check her out if she's on the floor, but only Splotch will hang around her, letting her play with him. He likes attention, so they both benefit :) So far he hasn't shown any aggressiveness towards her, but I do stay close by and have an eye on them when they're playing together. I hope they keep having fun together :) It sure is fun to watch!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Catchup Day

I seriously do not know where time goes. Well, I do. If I look at my watch the second hand goes around and around and around... that's where the time goes. It goes behind the second hand and is gone.

Point being, I am dreadfully behind on all things paper-work-ey. I'm quite behind on my Bible Study homework. It's the time of month to pay all the bills again which means I have to find the bills amid the piles. Our church is doing a cookbook and the deadline to submit recipes is fast approaching and you know I want to submit recipes! The budget hasn't been updated in too long. And my coupon file has morphed into piles of coupon inserts here, there and everywhere.

My excuse is that I "haven't had time!" Since last Thursday I literally have not had time to work on any of that stuff. Well, I did work on the Bible Study homework. We were on vacation Saturday evening - Tuesday and I did work on it then. Yesterday was recover from jet-lag day for Susannah, and early this morning when the alarm clock started going off I decided that I'm going to put my main focus on paper-work today. If I get all that done and move on to other stuff, that'll be bonus points.

And since I should get on top of all the paperwork today (well, I won't get all the homework done, but at least some), then I can spend tomorrow and Saturday getting the house back in order :)

So if I send up a flare, just figure that I got buried underneath a paperwork avalanche.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Susannah - 7 months

Susannah just gets sweeter and sweeter every day! People often ask if we sing "Oh, Susannah (don't you cry for me)" to her, but I don't know that I've ever sung that to her. Instead I'll often sing "You Are My Sunshine" to her.

She pushes up on her arms now, and can scoot herself in a clockwise direction. But she hasn't figured out counterclockwise! Sometimes she gets frustrated when she wants to get to something to her left and can't get there :)

She's starting to figure out how to go forward in her walker. She doesn't do it very much yet, but she's done it a couple times. She still doesn't express interest in rolling around a whole lot (but she does roll back and forth in the same spot).

She nurses 4 times a day now, breakfast around 8am, lunch around noon, supper between 5 & 6, and then her night-time feeding usually between 9 & 9:30, sometimes as late as 10pm. She takes about a 2 hour nap in the mornings, a 3+ hour nap in the afternoons, and then a short nap in the evenings. At some point I probably just need to nurse her before putting her down for her evening "nap" and just move her bedtime to that time.

She gets a solids meal with breakfast, lunch and supper. She eats baby oatmeal cereal (which I'm starting to supplement with some quick oats), rice (cooked to smithereens and then run through the blender with extra water), mashed potatoes, corn, peas, carrots, sweet potatoes, green beans, peaches, pears, applesauce and bananas. She likes bread, too, if we tear off tiny pieces and put them in her mouth for her. She is VERY interested in all things FOOD right now, and if we're eating and she's not, she wants to be eating, too!!

She is also becoming more verbal in expressing her displeasure. Sometimes I can't get her solid food ready fast enough and she fusses in her chair while she waits!! She is still a pretty happy baby overall, though.

She still can't sit on her own yet. She doesn't need much support to sit up, but with none she either ends up folded in half or toppled over to one side or to the back. She loves cats. We have a few that we let into the house sometimes and if she is on the floor, her eyes are on.the.cats. She loves to pet them but they aren't too keen on her petting style :) I think if anything will motivate her to scooting/crawling it will be the cats.

She surprised us with 2 teeth a couple weeks ago! They came through about 1 1/2 weeks apart and she is so cute with her two little nubbins :) She has also figured out that she can put some things in her mouth and not hold it in with her hands. She gets the biggest grin on her face when she's got a sock or toy in her mouth and not holding it - kinda like "Look, ma, no hands!"

This week Daniel's grandma moved from Pa. to an assisted living home here in Va. She stayed with Daniel's parents during the move, and Susannah and I got to "Grandma-sit" Monday and Tuesday (Grandma has dementia so she can't be left alone). Grandma is now only about 20 minutes away from us, so I hope we can go visit her often. I don't think she'll ever realize exactly who Susannah is (as far as being her great-granddaughter), but I hope that with frequent visits we'll become familiar to her and that she'll enjoy watching Susannah grow up. And Susannah will get to know her :)

Oh, and she has finally started LAUGHING!! We knew she could laugh, because we'd gotten her to laugh just a few times, but now we can predictably tickle her and she'll actually laugh :) It is so fun to hear her giggles :)

It is hard to believe that she is already 7 months old. More than 1/2 way to the 1 year mark. I knew I was going to love being a mama, and I knew my life was going to change, but I didn't realize how much (for either one)!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Wednesday Web Walk

I know I've been absent from posting for a week or so now, and my apologies to anyone who is on the edge of their seat waiting for new content :)

I want to share with you a couple of the blog posts I've been especially blessed and encouraged by this week.

Alicia's beautiful spirit and heart always shine right through the computer screen with each post on her blog, Alicia's Homemaking. Today she has shared her heart with the blogging world, talking about her passion for her home. I've been tossing around the "Why do I do this?" - "this" being homemaking - thought the past (long) while, and it is encouraging to read her words. You can find her post here.

Yesterday I stumbled across Courtney's blog, Women Living Well, and was blown away. In the month of October she is encouraging women to make their home a haven. Isn't that what we ALL want our homes to be? I know that's what I want! I'm looking forwards to reading more of Courtney's blog. You can find week 1 of her "Make Your Home A Haven" series here.

I hope that you find yourself encouraged after reading from these ladies!