Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday Fun

Da Hubby unexpectedly took the day off to spend some time with the kids and get some things done around the house. So, first, we're going to splurge for a breakfast out at McDonald's for the four of us and then he's going to play group with us! *wink* I'm sure the other moms will be thrilled! LOL Then, from lunchtime on, he'll get his hands dirty tackling another planter project on the front of the house while I do my "mommy chores" during nap time. So, I may not be around much today. Just in case anyone was wondering...LOL (Isn't the ultimate of pride to assume you are missed in something as huge as the blogosphere! LOL)

One last thing...we trekked down to the beach for the first time this season last night to play on the cool playscape that Flicka's been pining away for all winter. Daddy caught some cute shots of Pojke and Flicka:
Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Havin' A "Glory Mood"

Don’t you hate those medical tests where you can’t eat anything for 12 hours or so? On a normal day, you might not have even thought abut eating but knowing that you CAN’T eat make food all the more tempting!

I finally had a physical two weeks ago. It was the first one in four years. Because I’ve been pregnant with or nursing a little someone since June 2003, I’ve just been under the care of my OB. So, after four years of “combat duty” with my resulting “combat scars” (aka stretch marks), I went into my general practitioner with a long laundry list of things I’ve been putting off. Family histories needed updating: my mom’s battled cancer and my dad’s hip has been replaced due a genetic issue in that time. My maternal family’s history of thyroid problems needed to be checked not to mention blood work for cholesterol and all that good stuff. And, while I’ve lost 30 pounds post-partum, I’ve gained 10 of it back over the winter and still have about 50 more to go!

Anyway, one issue resulted in me being schedule for an esophagram – a lovely experience that entails gulping two Alka Seltzer-type tablets, drinking water, and being instructed not to burp! Then, you get to drink a moderately nasty white goop in gulps. And, finally, you get a large water bottle filled with an even nastier white liquid and a straw and told to drink it as quickly as possible…while laying down!

As someone who blessedly has had few if any health issues, a relatively simple, non-evasive test like put me through the roof of anxiety. Da Hubby offered repeatedly to go with me but I declined. As I drove to the appointment that day, I was obsessing about allthat could be wrong. But, “fear is lack of faith; lack of faith brings fear” kept ringing in my ears. Then, I had a realization. God is in control. He would not have anything happen to me that was not in His plan and without His strength to carry me through.

I started to try and think of Scripture…” Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you…” (John 14.27) immediately popped into my mind. I just kept repeating it and repeating it. When the initial calm began to fill me, I felt I needed to sing to one of the praise and worship CD’s we keep in the van’s player. I turn it on and the first words I hear…”I will give you rest…” from Big Daddy Weave. The tears began to flow. Here are the full lyrics…I sang it twice before arriving at the doctor.

To all who are weary and those who are heavy laden
Lay at the feet of the one who loves you best
Bring all of your trials and all of your tribulation
Come unto me and I will give you rest

I will give you rest

Take my yoke upon you
Come and learn from me
For I am humble in spirit and so you must also be
Lo I will be with you in the midst of every test
If you run unto me, I will give you rest

I will give you rest

I walked into that appointment completely at rest, at peace, comforted and happy. I felt like I was beaming like a fool! LOL So, after all the rig-a-ma-role of checking in, I find myself in the oh-so-lovely double gown get-up: one that opens in the back and one that opens in the front. I go into the imaging room determined not to let any fear steal my “glory mood.” There were grouchy techs…nope, sorry! There were uncooperative computers…nope, that’s not gonna do it! There was the 20 minute wait…ain’t gonna happen.

I don’t sit still well, however. So, as the 10 minute wait stretched to 15 and then 20, I was still getting antsy. So, I got up and paced. But, to keep in a mood of thankfulness, I chose to sing…out loud…and loudly! LOL The tech came to check on me twice. I’m sure she thought I’d lost my mind! LOL When searching my brain for a praise and worship song we’d done at church lately, a different one popped to mind. One I’ve been trying to memorize to sing as a special but could never quite get it right. In that moment, in that funky place, and in that weird environment, I remembered every word verbatim! Another one from Big Daddy Weave. I sang it over and over and over…

I come on my knees

To lay down before you
Bringing all that I am
Longing only to know you
Seeking your face
And not only your hand
I find you embracing me
Just as I am

And I lift these songs
To you and you alone
As I sing to you
In my praises make your home

To my audience of one
You are Father, and you are Son
As your spirit flows free,
Let it find within me
A heart that beats to praise you.
And now just to know you more
Has become my great reward
To see your kingdom come
And your will be done
I only desire to be yours, Lord

So what could I bring
To honor your majesty
What song could I sing
That would move the heart of royalty
And all that I have
Is the life that you've given me
So Lord let me live for you
My song with humility

Once the test began, my “glory mood” never broke…even with drinking that awful stuff! I knew that all would be fine! The test revealed the smallest of small beginnings of a hiatal hernia. No big deal. Something to watch. No meds required. No follow up. Nothing.
I couldn’t even wait to get out of the building to call Da Hubby to tell him what had happened. What else could I say…isn’t God great!

12 Months/52 Weeks/365 Days Later

Happy Bloggy Anniversary to me! A year ago today, I began my first blog over at Faithprints. I also posted my 200th post this past week. So, double celebration!

My first entry said “where to begin? I feel like I have so much to say, sort through, deal with, etc. that I don't know where to begin.” While I can see much has changed and grown over my 200+ posts, much remains the same.

Several friends have followed this ride from Faithprints to here. Dear believers like Anita, Debbie, Lisa, Sara, Denise, and Miss Lady of Value (along with many others) all made the leap to Blogger at about the same time. Our blogs a have been transformed by Blogger’s capabilities but even more so by the deepening friendships and fellowship we found together. We’ve also stumbled onto even more women of faith who inspire us and make us laugh. And, we’ve found a tool of accountability for things like Bible reading, resolutions, and other homemaking projects.

However, as I said, much remains the same. Particularly lately. While things have improved on this front, I’m still feeling like there’s so much left to deal with, write about, and cope with. I still don’t know where to begin…again.

I have several ideas for articles/blog entries that have yet to see the light of day much less pen, paper, or keyboard. I would need more uninterrupted time than I have right now to sit down to compose them. But, I feel God weighing heavily on my heart one of these topics and I’m finding many confirming “nudges” all around me.

Meanwhile, I have Bible reading I’m woefully behind on, Katrina’s Spring Reading Challenge to work on, I have CWO’s Tuesday In Other Words , Shannon’s Works For Me Wednesday’s, and Peach’s and Laurel Wreath’s Thursday thankfulness examples that I’d really like to keep up with. It just seems like too much right now.

All these things are things I really want to do. I enjoy them all. But, I have no idea where to start prioritizing them. A year ago, I was completely inundated by the process of becoming a mother of two. Now, with that challenge somewhat tackled (LOL), I guess I’ve moved on to new challenges and more lessons in balance and priorities.

This next year, I’m praying for big changes. Becoming a more powerful prayer warrior. Becoming an ever-improving woman of God. Seeking Him and His word at a greater level. Shaking a stronghold of poverty over our church and our home. (The devil will NOT distract me from God’s work and plan for me by something as simple as finances.) Deciding about starting a “homeschool preschool” for Flicka in the fall. Begin more deliberate witnessing and faith-building opportunities and discussions with Flicka. Begin using my writing and/or this blog to generate some income. And, I’m sure that God has more surprise detours in store as well which will be more lessons in submission and obedience.

Regardless of what comes, Lord, help me remember what’s most important: J.O.Y. First Jesus, then others, then you/myself.


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

WFMW: Keeping Med Dosages Accurate

With two small and ever-growing kids, keeping track of which medicines and how much to give each one was getting to be a concern. Plus, many of the OTC medicines don't give dosages for children under two. So, I found this site on the web. And, the Dr. Sears Medicine Cabinet page has over 40 different name brand and generic children's medciines and their dosages based (more accurately) on their weight along with listing general recommended ages.

I copied and pasted the acetaminophen and Triminic Nighttime Cold medicine dosages into MS Excel, printed them out, and have them posted inside my bathroom vanity near the kids' meds. After each pediatrician run where one or both of the kids' weights are checked, I write that on this sheet as well so the next time one of them needs something, even at a eye-bleary, 3 am sick call, I can easily see how much to give the sick kiddo.

Works for me! Check our Shannon's site today for more making-mommy's-life-easier ideas!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Need A Quick Fundraiser Perhaps?

Our church takes up a mission offering every second Sunday of each month. While I'm not exactly sure how it is distributed, I do know our local church supports a missionary in the area where the tsunami hit in 2004.

Our local believer, Brother O, who makes the pitch from the pulpit each of those Sundays began a new program recently asking for a dollar a week from each of us over the course of a year. He got a globe, cut a piggy-bank-style hole in it and that's our visual reminder each week as we enter the sanctuary. I have been trying every week to give Flicka two dollar bills to put into the globe but, to be honest, I have been slacking.

About a month ago, I was browsing through the umpteenth catalog I get from Oriental Trading each month. And, I saw this. Well, I've been looking for something to spiff up my momma-mobile and immediately wanted to order one. Just one. But, of course, Oriental Trading wants me to by the package of 12. Then, it struck me! I'll sell the rest to donate to missions!

So, I bought two dozen and paid about $22 with shipping and handling. And, while I could submit the receipt for reimbursement, I didn't. LOL So, after clearing it with the pastor, I gave the remainder to Brother O. He announced them yesterday for $5 a piece. "It's a witness tool!" he said.

And, when I got home, Da Hubby said to me, "oh yea, Brother O said to tell you he had only 8 left!" In the few minutes following church as we all straggled out, he had made $70 for missions! *BIG smile*

Just thought I'd pass the idea along...

SRT: Book #1 Review - "Bringing Up Boys"

As part of Katrina's wonderful challenge, Spring Reading Thing 2007, I committed to finishing this book. Luckily, I was 3/4 of the way through when the challenge started last Wednesday! LOL

Well, Dr. James Dobson’s take on how to raise responsible, kind, strong, and God-fearing men became more of a journey for me than for Pojke at this point! LOL Oddly enough, it initially reminded me of a recent “Law And Order” re-run I’d seen. The male shrink had interviewed a male defendant charged with murder and was describing how he had been emasculated and made to feel impotent by women in his life until he suddenly and fatally raged back.

Dobson’s statistics and examples about how men in this country (particularly Christian men) have been slowly demoralized, deconstructed, and devalued hit me hard. It also reminded me of the problems
Everyday Mommy’s recent series on “The Knight Inside Every Man” was trying to address.

The data on the biological differences between Flicka and Pojke really stunned me but rang entirely true. And, as a competition-adverse person myself, I better learn to cope quickly because apparently it’s part of a boy’s nature! LOL He cited an example of a mom and her son in a standoff over finishing his milk at dinner. The boy consistently refused. But, the dad simply looked at his son and said, “bet ya’ I can drink mine faster than you” and the milk was instantly gone!

I read the chapters about the profound effect fathers have on their sons and the one about a mother’s influence out loud to Da Hubby while traveling. We both were left in awe. It was like when we brought Flicka home the first time from the hospital and realized the overwhelming responsibility of taking care of this little individual God had given us.

And, as a semi-retired teacher, I was shocked by what a disservice our current model of education does to boys. While Dobson says he sent his kids to an out-of-home school (I don’t remember if it was Christian or public), if he had to do it all over again now with what he’s learned, he’d homeschool no questions asked. He feels boys are simply are ready and/or not mature enough to do what the schools ask of them at 5, 6, and 7 years old.

There’s a section on single parenting and on the effects of divorce on boys. There is also a discussion of Dobson’s beliefs of what causes h*m*s*xuality and whether it can be prevented.

While it took me an entire month due to wonderful lack of organization skills (LOL), it was a worthwhile read.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Spring Cleaning Battle Part Two!

Lisa wondered what Da Hubby was creating for's a pic of all that he accomplished yesterday!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Spring Cleaning: Battle of the Sexes! LOL

*sniff* Ah, the smell of spring. Fresh air. Bulbs blooming. Opening windows. But, you ever notice the effect on some men? *wink* While we get the urge to clean, straighten, and organize, they get the urge to...well, to destroy something? LOL I give you a picture of the front of my house at about 3pm this afternoon...

Friday, March 23, 2007

Three Months From Today...

...Da Hubby, Flicka, Pojke, and I will be participating in our local Relay For Life. Part of DaHubby's heart was just broken beyond mending when his big brother passed unexpectedly at age 44 in February 2005 from lung cancer. It was only about 6 months after having run in his first marathon in Chicago. This Relay will be the third one Da Hubby's family has participated in but only the first one we will be active in.

Da Hubby didn't understand his other siblings' ways of dealing with this loss when his sisters began mobilizing within a month of Big Brother D's passing to get the whole family involved in this fundraiser. Da Hubby initially wanted nothing to do with it. In 2005, we made an appearance with a 15-month-old Flicka. It was incredibly uncomfortable: sweltering heat and hurting hearts. In 2006, I was at the height of first trimester morning sickness with Pojke. So, this year I'd like to help do my part to contribute to my wonderful in-law's desire to see some good come from Big Brother D's passing.

Pojke's full name is in part in honor to well as my grandmother who we lost the month before Big Brother D. But, I'd like to show some financial support to the cause as well. Our budget is stretched beyond its' limits at this point. So, the only thing we can do is solicited donations and pledges which I've never done before.

Our local Relay folks have set up the capability for each participant to set up their own webpage. I have done so here. Please prayfully consider if you would be able to support us in this event. It's wonderful if you can. It's more than OK if you can't. Just as His grace is are your prayers. Thanks!

Overheard At The Viking Hus...

It must be a moon phase for witty youngsters! LOL Not to be outdone by Chili and Jules *wink*, here's what was heard at our breakfast table this morning...

Da Momma: *sneeze!* Excuse me!
Flicka: Mommy, you don't say 'cuz me!
Da Momma: Why, baby? Everyone should say excuse me! Even mommies.
Flicka: No, Mommy, you say "bless you"!

After three weeks of three-year-old attitude, a refreshing change! *wink* Maybe all that "momma harping" actually sinks in occasionally!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

On Board: Spring Reading Thing

I feel like I've spent a lot of time simply responding to others' posts, contests, carnivals, and challenges lately. Not a whole lot original thinking going on so to speak. Meanwhile, there's a lot going on here that needs to be "journaled" about to make some internal sense to me. So, I'm going to jump into this last one and no more for a while.

Katrina over at Callapidder Days is holding her Spring Reading Thing 2007 from today until June 21st. I had already made a 2007 resolution to get back reading things that were NOT picture books or board books! *wink* I've been gingerly cruising along with the tiny goal of one book a month. But, Katrina's challenge makes me want to "kick it up a bit" and do a bit of a sprint over the next three months.

So, in the interest of frugality, I'm going to start with the books I already own but have not read. And, maybe a couple from the library. I'm going to try to complete this challenge without purchasing any new books. And, with that, here's my list:

1. I want to finish "Bringing Up Boys by Dr. Charles Dobson". It is my book for March - which means I have about 10 days to finish it! Too bad I keep falling asleep in bed each night reading it! *wink* Not getting through it very quickly.

2. I need a "fiction fix" and some "brain candy" so I already started bugging my poor local librarian for the new Jonathan Kellerman book "Obsession" which will be released next Tuesday.

3. I've had a article/blog entry/AC submission/something rattling around in my brain since Christmas about a Catholic-turned-Lutheran-turned-Pentecostal trying to come to grips with the Mary of the God's Word and not what I'd been taught as a youngster. So, I'm adding Scot McKnight's "The Real Mary: Why Evangelical Christians Can Embrace the Mother of Jesus". I do not own this one nor does my library have it. So, this one may not get completed.

4. "God's Armor Bearer" by Terry Nance. Have started this twice and never finished it but I'm feeling that it is important for me to finish now...particularly since I've made a personal connection concerning my ministry at home "behind the scenes" from traditional ministries at church. My work at home for my family reminds me of the "ministry of helps" Nance described in his book.

Those are the only ones I'm "officially" going to pick for now. Too much brain juice at this point to see that far ahead! LOL So, I'm leaving myself the option to alter the list as my attention span sees fit. I've already seen things at Katrina's site as well as others' that look interesting so this list may morph considerably by the time this is over. LOL

WFMW: Diaper Genie Frugality

OK, this isn't brain surgery but it was one of those gold-nugget, pieces of parenting advice that we received that makes you smack your forehead saying "well, DUH! Why didn't *I* think of that?" LOL

The "diaper pail debates" often rage on the mommy message boards I frequented while pregnant. Which is better Diaper Genie, Diaper Dekor, or some other system? Which contains smells better? Which is easier to use? Which one uses your own bags or fork out money for refills? It was reminiscent of a PC/Mac debate there for a while! LOL But, we did our research when I was pregnant with Flicka and became a Diaper Genie family.

I'm proud to say that after 3 years, we are still using our original one! LOL But, by the time we began using it for Pojke, BOTH kids were still in diapers and the refills were starting to cost us as much as gas each month! *wink* So, a fellow dad (who is a financially-responsible, frugality MASTER!) was commiserating with Da Hubby at work one day and out popped this little piece of advice...

"Oh, yea, we use those but we only put the poopy diapers in it."

And, the clouds parted and the angels sang...

Well, DUH! With a maybe 4-to-1 ratio of pee-to-poop diapers (that's an unscientific study, of course) , the poop diapers fill up the Diaper Genie 4 times slower now. Thus, now requiring less than one refill a month! And, we placed a traditional trash can near the changing area as well and with 4 times more wet-only diapers going in there, that can gets emptied often enough that smells has never been a problem!

Voila - that works for me!

Now, go check out Shannon's site today for what turns out to be 200+ of some of the greatest mommy advice on the planet!

Monday, March 19, 2007

In Other Words

(I'm taking Laurel's challenge this week for "In Other Words." Go to her site to see others' interpretations of the following quote...)

"It is insufficient to proclaim that the Church of God has a mission in the world. Rather, the God of mission has a Church." ~Tim Dearborn

It’s hard to be the “frozen chosen” when you are a missionary. Despite one’s denominational background and its traditions, I have yet to meet a missionary that was not a little Pentecostal about their faith! LOL These folks are seriously, excitedly, and enthusiastically on fire for Christ – as we all should be but often fall short.

I’m reminded of the difference between those on what’s thought of as the traditional mission field versus those of us in our “regular” lives. These brave, faith-filled souls are serious about bringing the knowledge and salvation of Christ into areas most of us wouldn’t think of going. And, in return, we simply cannot envision those we come in contact with each and every day as our own personal mission field. And, again, we often fall short.

In addition, these sweet, sincere believers forgo modern comforts, traditional lives, and things we take for granted daily to live in a remote area, a strange land, a jungle village because they truly strive to exemplify Jesus’ love for all…as we all should but often fall short.

So, what’s the real point of the Church? Is it for those of us already “chosen” to find our little piece of peace each week, get our blessing, or get filled to withstand our upcoming work week?

Or, are we forgetting the true Mission of the Church? Is it not to “…go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, [even] to the end of the age. Amen.”

Heaven is our home. So, wherever we are every minute of the day is our mission field. We need to be on fire for and about God daily. We can be a light in areas others would not think of going. We can forgo a few comforts to add one more soul to the Lamb’s Book of Life. Let us live as missionaries each day and let us not fall short.

Read To Me Wrap Up! (Updated below)

(Update below...)

It's hard to believe that it has been a month! Geesh! Where did the time go? Jennifer started the Read To Me Challenge on February 19th. My original goals were to introduce Pojke to reading by using a pre-naptime and eventual pre-bedtime reading and snuggle to replace his final, lingering nursings and have him weaned by the end of this challenge.

The good news? Pojke is weaned! While Momma is still a little uncomfortable, he has been nursing-free for about 5 days. While Flicka nursed 'til she decided she was done at 15 months, I sought the weaning of Pojke this time around since that milestone had to be achieved before I could return to taking some much-needed maintenance medication I have been unable to take since I have been pregnant or nursing someone since June 2003! LOL

The less than stellar news? I was not completely faithful with my reading. There were occasions where Pojke fell asleep in the van or such so he was just shuttled to bed. Other times, my "pile" of board books sitting next to the rocker had been "mysteriously" moved and I was just too darn exhausted to get up and track them down. So, rocking ensued and hymns and lullabies were sung instead.

However, I'm finding that even after my patched-together attempt that it will definitely be something I keep up. Pojke is starting to laugh and be curious about the pictures, interested in my different "voices" reading, and wanting to turn the pages himself...which is what I was kind of shooting for anyway!

Thanks, Jennifer, for this challenge. I hope I didn't let you down! LOL We took a more round-about trail but I think we accomplished the heart of what you were trying to do! And,if you are interested on how everyone else did, go to Jennifer's bloggy home today and check out the results.

Later...wouldn't ya know it! What timing! I just looked over while balancing the checkbook and what is Pojke doing but reading a book! One of THE books we've been reading the last few nights! He brought it out of his room and sat down next to me to read! *sniff, sniff* Thanks again, Jennifer!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

What Will I Do With "All" The Money?

As a SAHM, I often worrying for the weight my hubby carries by supporting our whole household. He works so hard. And, I wish I could ease his burden somewhat, even if in a little way. Unfortunately, I also like to do cool things with and buy nice things for Flicka and Pojke. In addition, I was planning on starting homeschooling Flicka this fall and I’ve been pricing curriculum! And, it’s not always cheap!

So, I’ve been searching for ways that blogs could generate some income. There’s advertising of all sort. There are affiliate programs. Unfortunately, unless you have a blog with traffic numbers at are already relatively high, these bring in very little additional notice or money.

Then, I saw someone doing Payperpost. Initially, I wasn’t thrilled with the idea. Most of the opportunities aren’t something I’d want to post about, especially when I saw all the “check out our credit cards” and dating site posts. But, occasionally there are a few (like this one) where I can post and earn some pocket change to boot. You gotta love that!

So, with the $5-10 bucks a week I’m hoping to make over the summer, that will hopefully add up to about $100 for materials and initial curriculum for September!

My House-band revisited

This past Wednesday, Everyday Mommy started a discussion re: Biblical submission for women and wives.

"So, today I’d like to ask you to share your thoughts on the practical application of Biblical submission. In other words, how do you do it? What’s at the heart of this instruction, for you, personally? How has God worked in your heart as you’ve learned about submission? What has been your husband’s response to it?"

I wrote the following post last November after a ladies' tea at our church. Thought it somewhat addressed what Jules was looking for so this is a repost...

Ephesians 9.22-25: Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so [let] the wives [be] to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her...

We had a ladies' tea last Saturday. The theme was apples and in particular being the apple of God's eye. One the points (among many) was the issue of submitting to one's husband as the priest of the household.

Now, as a former 12-year-long single unsaved career girl (I left home at 18 and met Da Hubby when I was 30), I would have been the first to tell ya' that you were insane if you thought that (one) I even needed a man much less that (two) I would submit to ANY man lording over me. I had been raised by a single mom who strictly taught to depend on no one but myself.
Even when I returned to regular unsaved church attendance in 1988 at 20 years old, the church I was in NEVER addressed "submission" in relation to my future husband much less Christ! I don't think I ever heard the word! I just figured it was part of that Old Testament thing like the dietary restrictions that Christians don't follow anymore! Too bad that the Scripture was in Ephesians!

Then, I met Da Hubby in 2000, got married in 2001, and got saved and baptized in an independent charismatic church in 2002. (It was a busy few years! LOL) And, that's when the teaching about submission really started to sink in. The turning point was a message at our former church about how men are told to love their wives but women are told not to love but to submit! Initially, one could find this humorous or find this unthinkable. I'd like to think that loving those we care for comes naturally as part of the nature God gave us and we didn't need to be told to "love" these guys again! LOL

Either way - the most important part that no one up 'til this point bothered to explain to me was that men are to love their wives like Christ loved the Church! It was like an explosion went off in my head! So THAT is what that means!? Once I began to grasp the slightest understanding of the depth of Christ's love for me and that He only wants what is good for me, why would I have a problem submitting to the man He had chosen for me and that is directed to love me as He does!? Thus, my conversion to a submitted wife began.

So, at the ladies' tea, one of the points our speaker made was that the word "husband" references him being the "house-band". He is not only the priest and leader of the home but he is the "band" around the "house" holding it together. And, if a man fails at this calling, the home will be out of balance and at risk of falling apart.

I like that idea! While I may be the heart of the home so to speak, it is Da Hubby's arms holding us all together tightly! And, just as Da Hubby holds us close to him, so does Jesus hold us close to Him, sheltered under His wing of protection from all that may try to break that bond between Father and children!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Have You Seen This Yet?

As one who is always interested in a bargain, I was poking around online and found a site with pretty good coupon codes. Have you checked out yet? I found it through my Payperpost account. I’m not much of a shopper right now due to some strained finances but some of these deals are too good not to pass along. I actually found good coupon codes through a link to a great $5 kids' sale at Family Christian Bookstores. Unfortunately, the sale ends tomorrow so there isn't a wide selection remaining but for anyone interested in some $5 Christian DVD's, CD's and other stuff, go check it out!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank

Here is this week's Peachy-inspired reminder of thankfulness...(and a congrats to her for reaching her 52nd TTT and one year of mindful thanksgiving! Wa-hoo, girl! Keep it up!)

1. Silence - I know I've said it before but is there anything better than dual naps?!

2. Hot showers - what else can wash away nearly every toddler-conceived conspiracy to making a mom crazy and/or lose sleep? LOL

3. Dairy Queen gift certificates - Received $20 worth for my birthday and enjoying every dollar of 'em!

4. Reading - a "luxury" with two little ones that I'm slowly returning to.

5. Super cool in-laws - Da Hubby's family has really made me one of their own. And, they treat Flicka and Pojke like their own as well. The gifts for Flicka's birthday are still trickling in. I'm incredibly grateful for these folks who look after my kids and I when they are not "required" to do so! LOL

6. A cool secret sister - after a disappointing first year of participation in my church's S.S. program, I'm overjoyed to have one this time around that remembered my birthday and gave me a cute tote bag, my first Beth Moore book, a book light, and bag of trail mix!

(Side note: I just noticed that these first six are all things to pamper ME and my ME time! Coincidence? LOL)

7. Sunshine, glorious sunshine! FINALLY Michigan receives some mild weather. It only lasted 2-3 days and it's back to 30-40 degree temps but GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY bring on Spring because I'm ready!

8. My long-time girlfriends who live too far away - I can pick up a phone, call, just to hear their voice (or even to ask a favor) and it's like we've never missed a day. I miss Lisa (30+ years), Shelagh (10+ years), and Jill (15+ years) 'til my heart hurts but know that they will always be there at the other end of the phone if I call.

9. My pastor and his wife - nothing can describe how honored I am to be part of their ministry with our local Body. Both of them inspire me to higher living and greater deeds for God. Pastor Debbie was present at Flicka's and at Pojke's birth, praying over me in my greatest pain and over them as my miracles entered this world. They make me feel humbled and honored to be one of God's children.

10. As always - Da Hubby. My "other" strong tower amid the world's craziness. Don't know how I'd function without him. Don't plan on finding out! *wink*

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

WFMW: Daughter's Purse Organization

Flicka has several aunties and grandmas. Apparently, all these women think that no successful preschool girl's room is complete without enough purses to use one a day for a month! LOL I needed a creative way to store and/or organize all these little "pretties carriers" when I stumbled onto an unused shoe organize in the basement! Ta-da! Instant purse organizer! It hangs on a peg in Flicka's currently unfinished closet and it helps keep Momma from tripping over the multitudinous purse straps every time she enters the room! *wink*

Works for me! And, visit Shannon's site for more WFMW ideas!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Dear Me (1995)

(I know this carnival is over 2 months old but this has been brewing in my mind and floating around on my to-do list for the entire 8 weeks. I didn't mean for it to end up as negative- sounding as it did. Just trying to focus on the whirlwind, grace-covered, hugely powerful change that would be underway shortly...)

Dear 1995 Me,

I don’t know how long I have so let me hit the highlights quickly:

Guy #1 at work you’re dating off-duty? I can’t stress this enough…MARRIED! No matter what he says!

Guy #2 at work interested in you? Run the other way! He’ll be fired for stealing.

Guy #3 revisiting from your past? Bad news. The police report will NOT keep him away initially. Stick to it.

That first time through student teaching will be such a poor combination of location and supervision that you will have to withdraw midway through the semester and start again with a clean slate in a new district. You will think it is the end of the world…especially when the dean pulls you into her office and berates you for embarrassing the entire department and university. You will survive. You will go on to graduate with honors. You will get a good first job. You will be recognized statewide for work you will do in your classroom.

The church you are at now? You should listen more carefully. Pastor will become a father figure you will cherish.

Quit worrying so much about becoming “complete” by finding someone to fill all your gaping emotional holes. Work on healing those holes with God and yourself alone. Corny but true: no one will love you until you love yourself.

Pray. A lot. Often. Listen!

Read. Your. Bible. A lot. Often. Soak it in!

You are not crazy. You are not losing your mind. You are not stupid. You don’t know it yet but you have a medical condition that when treated with the correct meds in the correct dosages will transform your life into one of relative peace and calm. Hang in there!

As crazy as your family can make you, it’ll get worse before it gets better but it WILL get better.

You will be able to keep that final promise to Grandpa H and have babies with double initials in a fourth generation tradition.

You will have a husband that adores you at 150 lbs and at 250lbs while in the throes of childbirth. He will make you laugh until you cry and/or pee your pants. He will make you stronger mentally and emotionally and so much more confident. He will help you make a home you will be proud of. He will introduce you to a church and style of worship that will knock your socks off and have you experience God in a way you can’t imagine right now. How you meet will be a little out of the ordinary but trust that God knows what He’s doing and that His timing is always right. Take the leap – he’s SO worth it!

Finally, I know it seems really dark and depressing right now. Everything hurts and seems out of control. It’s lonely and awkward. What your life is now is not what you had in mind. But, remember that God is in control. And, He is still calling you to Him. I wish I would have heard Him sooner so find Him and run into His arms ASAP.


Me in 2007

A Little Longer...

Been so busy with family stuff with the birthdays and such as well as some ADD/organizational issues and financial concerns that I've been a very bad, very bad blogger! *wink* We're digging out from the weekend and I have a physical (FINALLY!) today - which will hopefully entail a return to my ADD meds since "Pojke" is almost weaned. Just wanted y'all to know I'm fine and will be back around shortly.

Friday, March 9, 2007

At 5 days; At 1095 days

"Flicka" - God's first miracle to me. My angel. Over two years in the "making", waiting for God's timing. Miscarriage. Medicine. Melancholy. Finally, she arrived! Thank you for making me a mommy for the first time and for three years of wonder! Happy birthday my sweet, sweet girl!

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Thursday Thank Tank

Well, it's Thursday again. And, despite my best intentions, it has been two weeks since my last TTT. As I've described before, this is an area I struggle with. Trying to mindful of the positive, awesome blessings God showers down around me is often crushed out by pressing concerns, responsibilities, and anxieties. So, in trying to maintain that mindfulness (in no particular order)...

1. Da Hubby's job: Things are not good at his shop. No new work in nearly three weeks. Blessedly, Da Hubby has his system administrator responsibilities to keep his time card full while his engineering responsibilities are fewer. The manufacturing industry as a whole is doing very poorly particularly in this part of the state where it is a major employer.

2. Da Hubby's insurance (again) LOL: Da Hubby has found himself this week with some major tooth pain. Professional inspection leads us to believe that there will be several crowns and bridges in Da Hubby's immediate future. While it only covers 50%, it's better than having no insurance at all.

3. Extended family: Nothing like a birthday and an inundation of birthday cards to remind you that you are loved, prayed for, and thought of! 363 days 'til the big 4-0! *wink*

4. And, speaking of birthdays...I praise Him for keeping me alive and breathing this long so I could make my way back to Him albeit a little later than He probably planned! *wink*

5. My marriage: Sadly, someone very close to me notified us that their marriage will be going through a trial separation. While this couple has been married many years and I only have the perspective of nearly 6 years of marriage, I naively pray that everyone is as happy as Da Hubby and I.

6. Health: Other than some occasional "morning booger noses", all four of us have been healthy this week and no one is on antibiotics...a first in a while.

7. Singing: It seems that nothing right now takes me immediately into His presence more than singing praise and worship songs (about all we listen to around here anymore! LOL). I can hardly get through any song on WFRN lately without bringing me to tears.

8. God's guiding Spirit: I had another article/blog/sermon idea that I had filed away. I took the scrap of paper with my initial notes with me while watching the kids in the church's nursery during last Sunday night's services. In the hour I was in there, I got the supporting Scripture located and the entire outline done...something I hadn't been able to do in MONTHS!

Been inspired by Just Peachy so perhaps stop by and see what she's thankful for this week!

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

WFMW: The Kitchen Edition

Well, I've trying to think of something since Monday to contribute to "The Kitchen Edition." And, I decided that I have either nothing to contribute or my little "tricks" are so ingrained that I don't recognize them as anything spectacular! *wink*

But here is one little thing I noticed last night as I did my grocery shopping. I used to need serious help organizing my grocery shopping list. And, since I've used three different grocery stores in the last 3 years (all of which were organized completely differently), it became a problem to remember everything and where it was.

So, I took to the aisles of a particular grocery store for about 10-15 and took notes! I wrote down (roughly) what was found in each aisle. I then went home and made up an Excel file where each column was a particular aisle. (One of mine is shown here. It's hard to read but you get the idea.)

So, during the week, I write on my list things we run out of. Come Tuesdays (my grocery day), I put everything into the correct column on my Excel sheet. And then when I get to the store, my list is in the order I will walk through the store! It inadvertently keeps me on budget since I fold the list in three's to fit on my coupon organizer so each "third" should come up to about $20-25 to hit my weekly grocery budget of $65-70.

That works for me! Go to Shannon's site for more ideas to streamline your kitchen-related problems.

Housework Observation

Something that that would make Laura over at I'm An Organizing Junkie say "well, DUH!"

I've never noticed this before:

Assumption one: I hate doing laundry.

Assumption two: I normally I do laundry on Mondays and Fridays - about 3-5 loads each day.

Often, procrastinating about getting those 3- 5 loads done turns into 2-3 loads on the designated day and 1 or 2 the following day.

So, as a result, having to do laundry two days a week just turned into FOUR days!

It's depressing that I 've turned my lease favorite work task into something that takes the majority of my days to do! *sigh* This epiphany is hurting my brain. LOL

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Heard in Our Little Viking Hus Lately...

Yesterday, Flicka is heard singing over and over and over and...

"You do the holy pokey and you turn yourself around...that's what it's all about!"

Is that a new children's church or toddler salvation message I don't know about!? *wink*

Monday, March 5, 2007

Hope Spring Eternal

2 Cor 4:16 . Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward [man] is being renewed day by day.

Having a rough “momma day” so far. The Vikings appear to have plotted their multi-weekly, slash-and-burn, pillaging of our home this morning…as it usually occurs on Mondays when Da Hubby returns to work. It’s just after 10:30am and there have already been time outs and a trip-and-fall blood letting.

However, hope springs eternal. Renewal in Christ is assured. I am reminded by the tiny miracle Da Hubby pointed out to me yesterday in the front planter of our home. And, I keep hearing Pastor Debbie’s voice in my head from yesterday’s sermon. I am convicted.

We are created to serve God. (Eph 2.10)
We are saved to serve God. (2 Tim 1.9)
We are called to serve God. (2 Tim 1.9 and 1 Peter 2.9)
We are commanded to serve God. (Matt 20.28)

She explained how there is no small service to God. It ALL matters! And, that one’s service is desperately needed in the Body of Christ. What would happen if our physical hearts used all our “spiritual excuses” to avoid its’ service in our physical bodies: I’m too tired. I need a rest. Someone else does it better. Let another step forward to this job.

And, we are all in our different seasons. But, service is NOT optional! It is the heart of Christian life. And, right now, in this season of my life, my area of service is my husband and kids. They are “all” I have time for but that is OK. This is where God wants me right now. It’s too important to do otherwise. My service at home is not so small to be dismissed. In another season, I’ll be able to work more directly in my local Body’s ministries but, for now, I do what I can as He would have me do.

“Being a servant means giving up the right to control your schedule and allowing God to interrupt it whenever He needs to.” So, I say: “Here I am, Lord, send me!”

Friday, March 2, 2007

That's Where The Party's At!

With all apologies to the Newsboys (LOL)...this is from their song "Wherever We Go":

"Hands up
Holler back here
et’s throw this party in gear
We brought the welcome mat
Wherever we go, that’s where the party’s at

"Hands up
Holler back now
We don’t claim any know-how
We’re giving God all that
Wherever we go, that’s where the party’s at"

Well, better late than never. *wink* The 5 Minutes For Mom blog party starts today. There are already over 280 "guests" participating in this little "meet and greet". So, let me introduce myself!

I'm a born-Catholic, college-ministry-Lutheran, and recently-converted-swingin'-from-the-chandeliers-Pentecostal, daughter of the King.

I'm also a nearly 39-year-old SAHM married to an awesome man of "Scandahoovian" descent from Michigan's great Upper Peninsula with a soon-to-be-three-year-old Svenska flicka and a soon-to-be-14-month-old Svenska pojke. I've been pregnant and/or nursing someone since June 2003! *wink*

I started this blog to help me have a little piece of myself and a place to write and figure things out following the arrival of "Pojke" in 2006.

nd, to help round out that picture, here's some cool archived things to help you get to know me even better:

The closest thing I have to a testimony

My faith walk has led me here, here, and here.

Things you might not know about me here, here, and here .

My quirky humor here, here, and here.

Now, please feel free to go to party central and check out all the other bloggy folks participating. Maybe you'll find someone new and interesting to gab with. Just remember your breath mints and no double dipping with your chips, please!! LOL

Thursday, March 1, 2007

It's Like A Conspiracy! LOL

11pm Went to bed
2am Pojke awake, talks to himself, falls back asleep
3:30am Flicka awake from bad dream
4am The weirdest, freakiest, loudest, brightest winter thunderstorm storm blows in
5am Da Hubby's alarm goes off
5:09am Da Hubby's snooze
5:18am Da Hubby's snooze
6:35am Storm kicks up again and wakes up both kids again


photo credit: