Saturday, May 31, 2008

I would really appreciate if you all would pray for our little guy, Zeke. Last week he was playing with his brother and fell funny on his foot. It's been giving him pain off and on all week so my husband took him to get an x-ray yesterday and today they called us and told us that it looks like he has a fracture. There's also some unclarity in the x-ray and there's even talk about surgery.

This last year just seems like one bamboozle after another. We had a baby in September last year and we pay our midwife out of pocket. Soon after my husband's back went out and was out of work for a few weeks and then there were chiropractor bills. We had a major financial loss with my husband's business due to a conflict with a client. Now he is taking us to court to get more money out of us. Our son cut his hand open carving and we had to take him in for stitches. There have been difficulties in personal relationships. Any of these things in themselves, we could recover from, but every time we start to get our feet back under us another thing happens.

It gets to where I've started feeling jumpy all the time, wondering what could be next.

I don't care anymore. If God wants us to be able to pay our bills, they will get paid. If He doesn't, they won't. I'm tired of feeling guilty, wondering if I hadn't done this or that. I don't care what people think anymore. I'm tired of trying to handle things right and then have them fall apart anyway.

This might sound pessimistic, but actually, I'm feeling relieved. Nothing is in my hands. I can't do anything about anything. Not try to find a cheaper house, not feel guilty because I feel like I should be selling stuff on Ebay or finding some way to make money to pay the bills. Not wonder about how the things I've said or done or tried to do are interpreted by others. I'm just done with it all.

I want to be a good wife and mother. Dare I say, even a godly one? I try hard some days and some days I belly-flop in major ways. I think I know something and then I don't. I want to have high standards and I'm happier with my life when I do. I don't believe my inadequacies are an excuse not to try. But somewhere there is a line where I just have to give it all to God and hope in His mercy. That's all I really ever had anyway.

I'm going to go clean the kitchen. :)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Roberta asked what calls to me about Texas.
Anyone who knows me would probably not expect me to start talking and thinking about moving to Texas. Montana, Idaho, Washington, yeah.. But Texas? And all the areas we are thinking about are city areas. Fort Worth, Katy, and a little bit, San Antonio, though I think we've pretty much ruled that out. I've always wanted to live in the country. For years I schemed and plotted and searched real estate ads. Had my poor husband drive all over the blessed world to check out this area and that...

Well, really, the same ideals that I wanted to move to the country for are the same ones that get me thinking about Texas. Property values in our area are pretty high. No, not as bad as California but still, higher than is comfortably attainable by a single income, large-ish family. We do have our own house, and I don't mean to make it sound like we just can't make it here, that's not true. But it has always been pretty much month to month. My husband is self employed and he has always worked very long hours. He comes home tired most of the time and doesn't have a lot of energy left to give the kids and I. I feel like if we could move to where the cost of living is lower we would be able to afford a larger house for less money, and maybe it would help to free him up. This is true of Texas. Here is an example of what about $150,000 will buy in the Fort Worth area.

Any of you who are familiar with real estate around here know that if you search for $150,000 in the Portland metro area or anywhere even remotely close you will come up with condos. And either they won't be in the best neighborhoods or they will be very, very small. There is just no comparison!

So that is a big draw. But also, there is a church in that area that looks (on the surface) to be pretty doctrinally close to us and is affiliated with our denomination, the Confederation of Reformed Evangelicals, which is really important to us. This one, Heritage Covenant Church looks like one that we could find ourselves fitting into. S. especially approved when she saw that there appears to be dancing. :) She really enjoys the contra-country type dancing that they do in the Jane Austin movies.

So this is a little of what we are mulling over. I can hear what you're thinking... "But it's so hot" I KNOW that's what you're thinking! And I can't deny that concerns me. We are talking about not selling our house here but if we do this (and this is all daydreaming and mulling and internet snooping and nothing further so far.) we will rent for a couple years and see if we can take the heat. :) Maybe we'll find a house with a pool.

Except you, Mrs. Darling. I already know what you think. :) But you know, Fort Worth is right by Dallas and Dallas is supposed to be some sort of shopping Mecca, so you could come visit me and we could just go shopping for days on end. :)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

This video at Vision Forum is just too precious to miss! Especially for us who are raising young sons. May God grant us all the wisdom to bring up such sweet little gentlemen!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Before we made a theological change and started going to the church we are in now, we went to a church called Beaverton Foursquare. The pastor we had there, Ron Mehl, passed away a few years ago from lukemia and shortly after that the local radio station which had previously played his sermons every weekday morning stopped. That was sad to me because it was pretty much a mainstay of my day to listen to Pastor Ron. He was always such a gentle and kind spirited man, but I never felt like he was compromising. Some people can just fit so much more into a quiet word. He always seemed to have a humble authority about him.

Anyway, I'm so happy that KPDQ has decided to air his sermons again. I probably know most of them pretty well anyway, but I'll be so glad to start my day to his voice again!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Last week S. had a singing recital. She's been taking voice lessons from one of the girls at church and she really enjoys it.
Here are some videos of her songs, which I don't really expect anyone to watch them all. The video quality is horrid. All we have is our digital camera and you can't use the flash on the videos, so they are very dark. And the jiggle all over, but what can you expect from your 14yr old brother? Anyway, here they are for posterity's sake. :):

"Se Tu Ma'mi": (Which F. does NOT like because he thinks it sounds like "Say to Mommy" which would just be wierd.)

"Tonight": (she has a lot of trouble hitting those low notes.)

and "Lacia Choi Pianga". I have no idea what that means. I guess she could tell you if you asked... But it is my favorite of the three.

Well, she did a pretty good job, and I'm proud of my girl. But mostly I'm not proud of her for her voice, which is nice, and I enjoy hearing her sing. I think it will be really nice for her in her life to be able to sing well and all that. But mostly I'm proud of her that she has the guts to get up in front of her church family, which includes a lot of dear supportive friends, but some critics as well, and do it. When I was her age, it would have been over my dead cold body before I would have done something like that!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

What type of Mother Hen Are You?
by Educational Resource

I saw this at Joyce's.
Pretty funny.. I'll have to ask my kids if they think I'm groovy. :)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Does anyone read this blog from Texas? Just curious...

I have been doing a lot of sewing lately. I wanted to take pictures but the camera is broken. :( And I just bought it batteries too. Isn't that ingratitude for ya?

I made E. a really sweet dress out of a daisy fabric. She is 12 now and at that twixt and tween age for buying clothes. Nothing in the children sections fits because they are all to short, but she isn't big enough to fit in the women's' petites yet. So that leaves the *gag* juniors' section. Which is about the same thing as saying there are simply no clothes being offered in her size. So I'm sewing.

I really try to keep my girls looking feminine and sweet. All too often it seems that the discussion of girls clothes falls directly to what is modest and what isn't and a groping for rules about hemlines, dresses or not, etc. But I think if we leave it at that, then we are missing something. I really try to achieve a sweet, girly look in my girls. When people look at them, I want them to be reminded of wholesomeness, sweetness, femininity.. I want my girls to look like they are happy to be girls! Have you ever noticed that even when the clothes at the department stores are decent as far as modesty goes, the look of the clothes can be anything but simply pretty or sweet? One day S. and I wear walking around a store and I commented how the clothes are all so clunky and thrashed looking, they make you look like you just crawled out from under a car. S. said "Yeah, it's like they are trying to tell the world that they are tough and nothing can hurt them."

Isn't that the truth? What is it about ruffles and pretty floral prints that make girls feel vulnerable? How many times have you heard a girl (or woman) talk about she just isn't a girly girl, she doesn't go for frilly things, etc. Why do you think that is?

I know I was like that as a girl. I wore sweats or jeans everyday. I never wore anything that was remotely feminine. It's something I have to work on myself with because it doesn't come naturally. But I am trying to teach my girls better.

It was beautiful weather for a few days, but today we are back to the rain. Well, at least the little boys have had a few days outside!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

I am thinking-hoping-that life is settling down now. :)

One thing I try to instill in my boys is that they are to be protectors/defenders of the innocent and those who are smaller and weaker than them. The best way to practice this virtue is at home, on their sisters and younger siblings.

So the other day I had to pull one of the little boys into the bathroom for a 'talk' because he had hit babykins when babykins had done something displeasing to him. After we had 'talked' for a bit, he was crying and I was asking him a few questions.

"Do you want to be a good, gentle, helping big brother? Or a mean, bullying, hurting big brother?"

Sniffle, sob, choke "a good, gentle helping big brother."

"Do you want to be a knight and a prince?"


"Huh? Why not?"

Fresh renewal of sob and tears..

"Because that would be marrying, and marrying is GROOOSSSS!"

Hmmmm..... Can you think of a way around that one?

And something I want to know. Why do the kids get all the cute shoes? I love these:

and these:

and these.

from my Garnet Hill catalog.

But they only come in kids' sizes. Does this seem right? I ask you.

And speaking of kids, and babies and shoes, I guess I have an announcement to make. But I'll letcha'all guess, because I suppose it isn't that hard. No, I guess it doesn't really have too much to do with shoes, except that I'll want comfortable ones in the months ahead...