Saturday, January 01, 2011

A New Year

I'm really not ready for a new year. I still need rest from the "old" one. Truth be told, I'd like to just bury my head in the sand. But, apparently that's not an option. I am looking forward to the next three weeks. The kids are in school all day, but I don't start until the last week of the month. I'm hoping to get some rest, accomplish some cleaning, and catch up with friends, all of which are much needed.

I'm not a New Year's resolution girl, but I did make one this year...drink more water! Maybe I should add "keep up with my blog," but I'll have to see how the semester rolls!

Many wishes for blessings this year.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

What to do, what to do...

I normally sleep really well. I consider it a particular blessing in life as I know many people who consistently struggle to get a good night's sleep.

Last night I could sympathize with some of my sleepless friends. I woke up around midnight and didn't manage to get back to sleep until about 3:30. My mind started racing and for a period of time it was in a wild panic. About what? Money. Plain and simple. This fall I'm taking out my first loan as I continue to work on my Master's degree. By the time I'm done, I'll have a sizable debt load. Honestly, it probably wouldn't be a problem if it were a business degree. But, it's a rather less practical degree in Old Testament! Add to that that I'm a woman approaching middle age with children that need braces (initial consultation scheduled for next week) and a host of other family needs. So often, when I look at what I'm doing it seems supremely impractical. The likelihood of a related job upon completion of my degree (that will help me pay off the debt I incur in the process) is not high.

Well, much to think over at this point. I think I'll go grab some coffee first, though.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

As Is...

"Dream God-sized dreams" is a phrase I've heard for most of my life in the church. There's nothing wrong with dreaming big. In fact, I am often so overwhelmed with the requirements of life that I fail to look up and see the bigger story taking place around me. Yet, when these big dreams thwart individuals from experiencing the everyday glory of life, when the visions eliminate engagement in the "real" world, we've missed the point.

Krista Finch, in her spiritual memoir As Is: Unearthing Commonplace Glory, seeks to identify God's presence amidst the boring, messy, and ultimately beautiful parts of life. These are the moments we we normally forget to invite God to and as a result continually fail to see his faithful presence. Finch's descriptions and observations are easy to relate to, made particularly charming in her presentation.

Although this book could be read in a few short sittings, it is better enjoyed in snippets. A story or two at a time, savored and explored. Each one a reminder of the beauty, fear, and mess inextricably mixed with glory too often neglected.

My favorite story of the book closes with a quote that resonates with me. Finch states, "...hope is an odd cat. That's probably why we don't entertain her very often. Everything around us tells us not to invite her in. Hospitals can't heal, wars don't end, bonds won't mend. We've asked hope to come, and she has left us high and dry. Why would we summon that kind of company; the kind of company that shows up late, brings rude friends, or ignores our requests altogether? Hope just doesn't look like we think she should look. She changes her hair color and gets a new wardrobe just when we start to recognize her." (p. 116).

That's just what I found in this book; hope. Hope that God is active in the little details, the things overlooked and considered unworthy. Glory is found in those very moments.

Friday, June 11, 2010

An Introvert's Dilemna

I've noticed over the last several weeks and underlying longing to encircle myself with home, books, and the lovely comforts of all that is familiar and safe. I thought at first that it was simply catching up from a long semester with lots of my own school work on top of the responsibilities of being a mom. But, week after week, this tendency continues to assert itself, crowding out full enjoyment of almost any activity that takes me away from my "quiet spot." (Granted, my "quiet spot," home, is much less quite now that my three kiddos are out of school as well).

As I've been thinking about this draw to home, I've reflected on a quote from the book Traveling with Pomegranates. Here, Sue Monk Kidd makes a statement that resonates with me at the moment. She states, "At times like this, I feel the small curse of my introspective nature and its obstinate demands, how it wants to be allowed, wants my unhurried and undivided attention, how the moments of life insist on being metabolized and given expression. As usual, having failed to stop and tend to this unmitigated part of myself, it has stopped me." (p. 218).

Like the author, I'm tempted to push past my melancholy. To skip the searching and resting that my introverted nature requires at this time. But, in doing so, I deny part of who I am, who God made me to be. I push past my fundamental need to process, think, and absorb.

I've often wished that I wasn't an introvert, that I didn't have these tendencies. But I am, and I do. So, for today anyway, I give myself permission to stop and tend to myself. That decision sparks a sneaky little smile from my introverted self!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Summer Vacation!

My summer vacation began a few weeks back. That was a good thing as apparently I needed a full three weeks to be available for end-of-school activities for my kids. From Field Day, Reader's Theater's and parties, it's been a busy and fun few weeks, capped off last night by Aaron's 9th birthday celebrated at the Denver Aquarium. Much fun!

There's something truly wonderful about summer vacation in the eyes through the eyes of children. Who's not excited about 2 1/2 months off to swim, play and vacation? I consider myself very blessed at this stage of life to be able to join them!

Off to enjoy a lazy Saturday!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


The end of the semester is almost here and I have one (small) project left to submit. It's currently with an editor and should only take another half hour of my time once I get it back. So, I'm feeling in the mood to celebrate. Starting with a good book. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. I have a good 2 1/2 months to enjoy!

Even better than the end of the semester is the call I received last night from the school's art teacher. At the art show next week, Nate will be honored as "Art Student of the Year" for 1st grade boys! It has been a hard fought year for Nate (and me). We've worked on so many things on the academic side that I never once gave a second thought to how Nate was doing in his specials classes (art, music, p.e.) I had no idea that this is an area of success for him. I'm so excited for him.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Great weekend!

I can't believe it's been over a month since last posting. It's the busy time of the semester. Even though I'm only taking 4 credit hours, it still gets stressful.

I turn in my Hebrew paper tomorrow and then just have one project due after that. I am so excited for summer (not taking any classes)! I love the relaxed time to hang out with the kids and just enjoy life.

Eddie and I had a fabulous weekend away. We're at a transition point in our marriage. We now have elementary school children and I'm working my way (very, very slowly) back into the working world. In the midst of that, we're figuring out who we are as a couple again. We've had some bumps along the way over the last couple of years. Some of them big. We don't want those bumps to become what defines us, so we decided to do something about it.

We went on a marriage retreat through Marriage Encounter. I will be very upfront and tell you it's not really a retreat at all, except in getting away from your own home. It's not the traditional marriage seminar. It was really good for Eddie and I to take time for our relationship. I'm tempted to say we had a "great time." But, that doesn't really describe it. It was a worthwhile time. If you want or need to open up communication lines in your marriage, I encourage you to check out the link above. They are sponsored by various different denominations, so you can even choose a faith expression that fits best for you.

That's it for now. Hopefully, I'll come out of the cloud of school here shortly!