Thursday, December 29, 2011

Winding Down 2011

I cannot believe the date on the calendar, surely it is incorrect, it is December 29 already. It is time once again to pull out the new calendars,transfer birthdays and important dates from the old to the new, and add doctor appointments from cards I have been collecting in my desk for this occasion.

I love the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. It is a time of reflection it seems like for everyone. We all long to be better, do better and look better in the new year. I am humbly reminded that even though I may set goals and make plans for the new year, unless God is in them, they will not matter in the long run, and probably will fizzle out in the short run.

I am amazed at how God has brought our family through the 2011 year. The year that our youngest received the unexpected diagnosis of type 1 diabetic, along with a scary stay in the PICU, while his Dad was at annual training with the Army National Guard. We are 6 months into this new way of life, and I would like to say everything is sailing along smoothly, and in some ways things are much better, but in other ways not so much. There are still so many unknowns and uncertainties that this diagnosis brings. My husband and I are not scared any more about giving our son his 4-5 shots daily, and he has gotten used to pricking his fingers countless times during the day, although the last couple of days have been rough. His fingers have been hurting, and he doesn't want to check his blood sugar, but he has to, because we don't have any other way of knowing for sure what is going on inside of his body. It is a tough sell for a 9 year old boy. Also, I can tell you the carb count of countless foods, which has raised my own awareness of what I am eating. Siblings have learned to deal with a big intrusion to our family's way of life prior to diagnosis. It is still a process.

Looking back at 2011, I can see it being woven into the tapestry of our family's life, and I know that God will use what can be seen as bad for His good. Strength, endurance and a new found compassion for families with children with chronic illness has stirred within me. I am looking forward to 2012 and a fresh start. As the last couple days of the year wind down, I am earnestly seeking God's plan for our family in 2012, moving forward in a hope that only He can provide. God and me in 2012,it has a nice ring to it.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Gift of a Christmas TEA

Well, another Lighthouse Homeschool Association Mom's Christmas Tea is in the books! What a wonderful time of blessing last night as Moms gathered to focus on "Preparing Our Hearts for Christmas" brought to us from the heart of God by Mariel Davenport of

Here is a summary of her talk- Using the letters in JESUS' name she refocused our hearts on the true meaning of Christmas. J-JOY, the joy we have in Christ, like the joy the angels spilled out from Heaven the first Christmas night. E-EVANGELIZE, the shepherds were the first evangelists, sharing what they experienced with everyone, just as we should share our personal encounters with God with those around us. S-SACRIFICE, Joseph sacrificed his rights in being Jesus' earthly father, Do we sacrifice for others in His name, or do we dwell in the world of self-pity? U-UNDERSTANDING Mary pondered all of the wondrous events of the first Christmas in her heart, as we need to pause and ponder God's gift to us this Christmas and finally S-SAVIOR, Jesus' name, a name above all names, still today His name is one to be in awe of, remembering that He grew from a baby in a manger to a Savior on the cross.

I have always enjoyed this special evening of fellowship and encouragement in my homeschooling group. Tables were decorated creatively with the beautiful colors of Christmas. Everything looked beautiful in the soft candlelight and shimmering gold and silver that filled the room. The food was delicious as always and the conversation was sweet. I got some fun ideas for decorating from all of the incredible displays.

I love getting lost in these type of delightful times of fellowship and love, and imagining that this is what HEAVEN will be like, everyone gathered together in, one accord and in fellowship and love, the rush and busyness of life melted away.

I truly feel that I unwrapped one of the very best gifts of this Christmas season. Thank you JESUS for friends, fellowship and most of all I thank you truly for the gift of your LIFE and for the second Christmas that is yet to come!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sacred Chaos

Here I am once again with too many months since I have blogged. We have entered the last month of 2011 with whirlwind speed. Last night I took a deep breath in and asked God to help me with all that looms ahead. I have been reading a really good book called Sacred Chaos: Spiritual Disciplines for the Life You Have by Tricia McCary Rhodes. She offers up suggestions of connecting with God despite or in the midst of a chaotic life. I must say, I "stumbled" upon this book, but it has been such a blessing. It reminds me that God is not scared of a little turmoil or upheaval, He just would like to be included in it! I often turn to every other thing to get my check lists marked off, caffeine, delegation, prioritizing, but the first thing I need to be doing is inviting God to dwell with me, right smack dab in the middle of everything.
So, I have learned I can grab moments with God anytime there is a pause in my family's chaos and in doing so, God can turn our chaos into something sacred. Thank you God for reminding me, where you are is the best place to be, and that You, can handle chaos.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Migraines and Hurricane Irene

Our great state has just weathered Hurricane Irene who proved to be quite tenacious as she held on for all she was worth throughout the day on Saturday. As she pulled away last night and headed up the Eastern Seaboard she left behind reminders of her extended visit. For me that means another migraine headache.

It is getting so that I can forecast drops in the barometric pressure based on my headaches. I really thought that might be an old wives' tale but after researching and looking at articles I realize that there is some real truth to the headache-weather connection.

I am looking forward to a calm week weather wise in North Carolina. Watching the tropical update forecast, there is talk of a new depression just coming off of the coast of Africa. Hopefully it will stay far away from the East Coast and leave all those cleaning up after Irene alone.

I wonder if I should start naming my migraines? So long Irene.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Starting Again

Hello, it's been a long time! I am starting to blog again after a long break. We are starting our new school year and our 11th year of homeschooling. Today was our official first day of school complete with a yummy breakfast and devotions around the breakfast table. I have missed that time of connecting each morning with the kids. Everyone worked on organizing their school areas, cleaning out notebooks, cubbies and file folders. There is something so wonderful about new beginnings. The fresh school supplies are piled up on the table ready to be distributed to the dare I say it, eager students!

I have the honor of leading the homeschool association that our family is a member of in our area. I serve with an amazing board of women that are all volunteers! We had our family kick-off picnic for our association at a local park with over 100 people attending. It was a lot of fun, with a lemonade stand complete with yummy cookies. Ladder ball, water balloons and a parachute were among some of the activities enjoyed by people who came to the picnic. It was a great way to see lots of people and for everyone to connect before the busyness of the school year begins.

There are many new challenges for this year for our family both individually and collectively. One of the biggest challenges we all face is the new diagnosis of our youngest son as being a type 1 diabetic. It is tough, working out routines, dealing with frustrations and learning to balance this new part of our family life. We are trying to make things as normal as possible for everyone, but sometimes they are just not.

I am going to try to blog more regularly, if not for any other reason than for a sort of therapy for me. I don't have any grand ideas that I have a huge following, but I do think it is important to document what God is doing in my life as a reminder of His faithfulness and His goodness to me.

Looking forward to more posts.

Monday, April 18, 2011

A different kind of spring break

A chance to catch my breath for a few days has offered me the opportunity to write a little bit. Our area has been hit with tornadoes in an extraordinary manner, not seen for over 20 years in NC. As the aftermath unfolds,many have lost their lives and many more their homes and things that were precious to them. I still cannot believe how close the tornadoes were to our home and yet how far away they were at the same time. Drive up the street and take a right turn and the devastation unfolds. Our family was talking about how remarkable the destruction of a tornado is, how it dessimates one home and leaves another right next to it untouched. Unexplainable...

It serves as a reminder once again to hold on to things loosely in this world and to love your family and those you hold dear, magnificently, every day, even when they are not lovely and you don't want to do it, because you never know what the next turn in life's path will bring your way. Lavish the love on them!

I am grateful for the pause in school for this week, but seek now to make it more meaningful. I want our family to help the ones around us that are suffering from the destruction left behind after the tornadoes. We are so fortunate to have been spared from the tragedy so close to us. Friends have been effected, we will start, of course, with them. This could be a huge marker stone in my kids lives', where they see faith in action helping the hurting,trying to make a difference in Jesus' name. I am so grieved over the families whose lives have been so tragically touched by Saturday's events. I want it to make a difference in what we do this spring break with our days. I want it to make a lasting difference in how we are as a family, how we relate to one another, to those around us.

Praying for all of those across North Carolina that are hurting and suffering.

Psalm 34:18
"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit..."