Thursday, February 25, 2010

An out-of-the-ordinary Thanks Tank

Normally, Thursdays around here has meant a list of things I am thankful for this week, things that are filling my "thanks tank." And, we have more and more to be thankful for these last three weeks.

Following DaHubby's layoff at the beginning of the month, we have been showered with care, groceries, gift cards, cash, and prayers. We've had no income for two weeks yet all our minimum bills have been met.

As odd as this may sound, having DaHubby home full-time has actually been a huge blessing and a reprieve from the craziness that has been our lives the last two years while DaHub's juggled full-time school and (mostly) full-time work.

While the stress level is still on the high side of normal, if I had to be honest, this is the happiest we have all been in months.

This may not make sense to someone in the world, but I'm convinced it's a "God's economy" thing. It is just like less is more; being a humble servant in a me-oriented , fame-seeking culture; and it's ALL God's but he's only asking for 10% back. LOL

Put more succinctly, Dan Dumas said at a 2003 conference, "...the principle is simple ─ The way up is the way down in God's economy."

This may sound crazy but we've been happier with less these last 3 weeks than we've been in a long time.

So, this Thursday, I praise Jehovah Jireh for His provision and His work through the believers around us but I will also praise Him for this storm, this challenge, this season of our lives because we're drawing closer to Him and closer to each other than ever before.

While Pam is on hiatus right now, read her old Thanks Tanks here.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Flicka's very proud of the things she builds...but knows she needs to document them before her brother finds her...LOL

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The fastest way to drive an ADDer insane?

Give 'em unstructured time...

And/or change their schedule.

Both of which have been happening here in the last 3 weeks. And, of course, I'm not the only ADDer in this house so it has been doubly bad.

In addition to the stress of DaHubby's layoff and no income for the last 2 weeks, the large stacks of paperwork, the long to-do lists, multiple "side hustles" in progress, and chunks of unstructured time multiplied by two people desperately trying to stay organized and get things accomplished with an unstructured amount of time is just a recipe for disaster. LOL

But I think we're hanging in there OK. Even if just by our teeth and fingernails.

I've taken to old habits. EVERYTHING goes on a list - either virtually in my iPod or on paper. DaHubby's taken to using Google calendar to keep me and one of his side hustle bosses informed of when he's free to do work for him.

But, the skeleton of structure we're basically following are our class schedules. Whether it's Flicka's school, Pojke's YMCA class, DaHubby's classes or my ASL class, everything is pretty fluid around those things.
"Adult ADD is what we call any of several syndromes that interfere with adults' psychological functions such as planning, managing time and tasks, and making decisions.

"People with this problem may experience difficulty in the following activities: avoiding distractions, remembering and organizing information and things, starting and finishing tasks being on time, set and ordering priorities, acting and (my emphasis) speaking out inappropriately...

"For people with ADD, time often appears as a continuum that rolls on and on and so does not provide that framework, and, therefore, is of no help in organizing, planning or prioritizing."source

Lucky for that "and" or I'd feel like a real dork being the only one fighting all six of those symptoms. LOL

So, for those of you that know us IRL, please take pity and exercise patience. LOL We're pedaling and trying to keep up as best we can.

Monday, February 22, 2010

ASL-induced clarity

I've been taking classes in American Sign Language at our local YMCA for about 8 weeks. We've gotten through the basics: family relations, pronouns, and everyday words for introductory conversation.

The last two weeks, however, we've been going through the "religious" words. Spirit, salvation, worship, bless, anoint, holy, sin, grace, hallelujah, baptize, etc. plus the signs for several denominations like Catholic, Jewish, AG, Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, Quaker, SDA, LDS, and Church of God.

But two in particular really struck me tonight.

The first is "crucify". Your thumbs go into your opposite palms like nails and then are "driven in" with a fist. There's something about signing that over and over and over for practice that drove home a real "ah ha" moment tonight. Picturing those nails...not to mention His life...all done for little ol' me.

The second was the sign for "sacrifice" and "give". They are very similar - the only difference is the way they begin. "Sacrifice" begins with both hands in a "S" of finger spelling at chest level and then you move your hands forward as if you are offering someone something. The tricky part, our instructor said, often is to remember to open your hands..."sacrifice doesn't work unless you open your hands to let it go."


How many times do we think we are giving something or of ourselves but never truly let go? Is it really a sacrifice for someone or, better yet, for God if we never truly let go of whatever it is?

I've heard it preached that God can handle your "baggage" but you have to give it to Him, let it go, and you can't pick it back up!! Praise God that this is true.

So, tonight, I'm remembering my Lord's true "sacrifice" for me through him being "crucified", nails driven through His hands and dying for me to allow me to let go of that baggage and find new life in Him.


Juggling chainsaws

Life around the Viking Hus has been changing slowly and steadily since summer.

DaHubby's schooling is still in full-time mode but there's a light at the end of the tunnel. This is the last full time semester which ends May 1st. He has one class spring semester and he's D-O-N-E!

However, be careful what you pray for. LOL We had been hoping things could ease up their relentless pace because this momma and daddy are ex-haust-ted with two years of "emergency mode" living as DaHubs has been working and schooling full time. Then, DaHubby got laid off. Would it be ungrateful (and really naive) to say that this is actually a blessing of sorts? LOL

We love having him home. I love the break from full-time Viking care. And, I love he's getting more sleep and more time with the kids. But, the changes in schedules, planning, and logistics are taxing my already ADD-addled, organizationally-challenged brain. LOL There was a point one morning last week where I had a semi-panic attack because, just for a moment, I couldn't think where the kids were and who had them. LOL

Then, DaHubs unemployment was initially denied because he is a full time student. (Don't ask - crazy bureaucratic rules.) But, there's a protest process which we're going through that should end in our favor by the end of the month.

There's been the trips to various public assistance offices. There have been MOUNDS of unending paperwork. And, there are still bills to pay and insurance issues to deal with.

All this while still juggling the standard "soccer mom" fare: playdates, school events, Bible study, church commitments, family commitments, my Monday night class in sign language, kids' YMCA classes, etc.

Then, as if all that wasn't enough to juggle, DaHubby and I are scrambling with some "side hustles". He's involved with some computer stuff while I'm scrambling to make these and these.

While I know it is "only" NINE weeks 'til DaHub's graduation, those nine weeks ahead of us seem longer than the previous 80-some that have passed since he started school.

However, regardless of all this, we have been abundant showered with blessings the last 3 weeks as we've struggled the last two with no income. We've had money pressed into our hands, gift cards given to us, offers of help from friends and family, and possible job leads from friends. God has placed encouraging people around us this month and we praise Him for it.

We have felt so much love from God, friends, and family. When we collapse into bed each night, we know that we are loved. And, DaHubby and I pray that despite all that's going on, all the stress, all the upheaval that the Vikings know that truth as well. They are loved.