Sunday, October 24, 2010

The veil was torn!

Last night, we went to a Chris Tomlin concert and as we were singing, a line of one of my favorite songs caught my attention:

The whole Earth trembled
And the veil was torn

I've sung this song tens of times, at least, but last night those words struck a chord in my heart and I immediately started weeping at the imagery.
If you're not familiar, during Bible times, a veil was hung in the temple that separated the people from the Holy of Holy's--the place where God's presence dwelt. No one except for the high priests were allowed to enter His presence.
In Matthew 27:51, at the exact moment Jesus died, the ground shook and the veil in the temple was torn from top to bottom--symbolizing the end of God's distance from man. Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we could stand before God, forgiven.

It reminds me of a groom who is so in love with His wife, so infatuated by her beauty that he can't wait to finally be face to face with her as his wife. (Sidenote: I wouldn't know about this because I didn't wear a veil at my wedding, but I've seen this at other weddings) As soon as bride and groom are announced as husband and wife, the husband flings back his wife's veil, eager to be face to face with her and to shower her with affection.

We--the Church--are God's bride. He wants to be face to face with us. He tore that temple veil when Jesus died because He was so eager to get to us. He was so excited that the time He had waited for was finally here.

How haughty are we that sometimes, still we hold Him at arms length.
"Yeah, You keep Your presence over there, Lord. I'll call You if I want You."
What is wrong with us that we do this when we could be face to face with the Holy Lord God Almighty Yahweh!?

Don't keep Him at arms length!
Step in to His presence! Meet him face to face!
The veil was torn because God wanted to get to you.

Friday, October 22, 2010

In the dark

Yeah, yeah, I know I've been a blog slacker again lately. It's been busy around here, what with snot and puke and all the normal stuff, too. But here I am--back for now!

I'll bet most of you had said something at one point and had to eat your words later.

"I can't believe my mom said that. I would never said that to my children!"

Twenty years later:

"Because I said so, Freddy! That's why!"

I think most first time parents are idealists. It's a good thing! We want to raise our children to be the best they can be. Most of the time, though, not all of our ideas stand the test of time.

-I'll NEVER give my child sweets before the age of 5 (already broke that one!)

-I'll NEVER let my child watch TV before he's 2 (says the mother with the Veggie Tales addict)

I hold fairly firmly to an AP style of parenting and one of my ideas is no crying it out. No laying a baby in a crib and leaving the room while he cried himself to sleep. Never. It's not taking care of his needs, it's leaving him scared in the dark, it's making him so defeated that he sees no point in crying because he knows I won't come.

Then, I had a 14 month old who decided to make every bedtime a 3 hour struggle and to refuse to nap--at all--for two weeks. He wouldn't nurse to sleep. If I tried to just lay with him in the bed, he would scream and arch his back, and scoot across the bed. He wouldn't let me rock or sway with him. Even if I wore him around the house until he fell asleep, he would wake up as soon as I took him out. Do you know what little sleep and no naps does to a baby? It makes him irritable and cranky, prone to many, many tantrums. Do you know what that does to a mommy? It makes her feel inhuman.

After almost two complete days of being on the verge of tears and insanity, I consulted some AP friends. I said that I felt like my only other option was to let him cry and sit in front of his crib, but I felt too guilty to do it. They told me that Kade needed sleep. Sleep isn't optional. They told me that he is at an age where it is ok to give him limits.

So I did it. I did his usual bedtime routine, we prayed, sang a song, I told him I loved him, and laid him in his crib. I sat in the floor and waited. He cried--not for as long as I expected. Then, he played for awhile, laid down, and went to sleep. As proud of him as I was, I felt emotionally exhausted.

I came out of his room and Michael said, "How was that any different than just crying it out?" To be honest, I just scratched my head and said, "I'm not really sure, but it is." It seems gentler and more humane to me, but I couldn't put words to my feelings. So I asked one of my friends for help again. I said, "So, what's the difference?" And she said (not in these exact words, but you get the gist), "Because you're laying him down and making him go to sleep, he's mad; If you laid him down to go to sleep and left him, he'd be scared and mad."

So, there it is. He may not want to go to sleep, but because he knows I'm right there with him, he eventually calms down and goes to sleep. He knows I'm there. Even in the dark.

The funny thing is, I didn't even think any deeper than this until my husband came home and said that one of his coworkers, who reads my blog, wished I would write a blog about it (So thanks for the idea, Nancy!)

Have you ever been to the funeral of person whose family believes and loves God? If you've noticed, there's a huge difference. The first type of family is sad, and they may cry for awhile, but they're still able to smile and there's a joy because they know that God is there--he is there to comfort and reassure them that everything is ok--even in what seems like a dark time. I witnessed this at both of my grandmother's funerals. My parents and my family who are saved didn't spend the whole time weeping; they were able to smile and speak kind words to people and even share funny memories about my grandmothers. Even in the dark, they had hope. They knew that God had a plan and that tomorrow would bring a new day.

You might have had a much longer struggle than 3 hours with God and his plans for your life. You might not want to give in at all, because "It's your life and you're going to live it for you--not for some unseen God." When you're in a really dark place, though--when it seems like there's nowhere to go and noway to climb out--just look beside you. Even in the dark, you can see Him, staying with you as long as it takes for you to find rest. When you finally realize that He's right there, you can lie down and have peace, knowing that He's there. And if you wake up, and it's dark and you feel alone--cry out to Him again. He will come to your rescue whenever you need Him.

So, yeah, I'm gonna eat my words. I still would never leave Kade alone to cry and I don't think I would have let him cry at all before now, but at this point, it works for us. Kade gets plenty of sleep, wakes up happy, and still gives me slobbery hugs and kisses He still loves me. He knows I'm there, even in the dark.

Monday, October 11, 2010

"Oh, baby, it's a new day...."

Good morning! It's a new day, people! A fresh new day and a fresh new week!
Get out there and live your lives!

It's the calm of the storm that comes blowing in
It's the springtime saying I'm back again
The clouds that roll by
Crossing moonlight
Me and you love - everything's alright
Standing in the rain with nowhere to go
Laughing and we're spinning and I hope that you
Remember this day
For the rest of your life
Me and you love - everything's gonna be alright

And it just might be
The prettiest thing that you'll ever see
It's a new day
Oh baby, it's a new day
If you look outside
To see a beautiful sunrise
It's a new day
---"New Day", Robbie Seay Band

Sunday, October 10, 2010


Trust is an issue that has weighed heavily on my mind for the last several days.
It's something that is hard to gain, but so easy to break.

In this day and time, it's hard to trust anyone. There are so many stories on the news about murders and assaults that happened just because someone thought they could trust another person. There are so many people who steal and cheat money from people who trusted them. So many children kidnapped. After seeing and hearing all of these things, of course it would be hard to trust just anyone.

On a slightly smaller scale (but more personal)--some humans, apparently, find it hard to tell the truth. Ever. Of course, we all slip up and tell fibs from time to time, but not massive lies that could potentially ruin the lives of others.

If you ever have an experience where someone deceives you in a big way, you may not want to trust anyone at all. However, if you don't trust someone, life is very lonely. For me, it's trust in God. Oh, I trust my husband and my family and my friends, but as humans, they have the potential to mess up from time to time. If I decided not to trust them at all for fear they would let me down, life would be miserable. However, God is the one person whom I can say with all certainty will never break my trust. He will never let any of my secrets slip, never turn His back on me, and never, ever abandon me.

Do you see what I'm saying? It's ok to trust people, but if we put all of our trust in them, we will someday be disappointed.

I have a wonderful group of friends. As a mother, it's sometimes hard to find people you can connect with, people who will listen to you, and people who actually understand you. This group of friends is a mixed bag of hilarious, sarcastic, understanding, intelligent, giving, nurturing goodness! We shared secrets with each other. We shared each others' lives! This weekend, someone betrayed our trust. As a result, we lost something very precious and valuable. But I want them to know, they still have my trust. Even if time proves that one of them messed up (and I believe with all my heart one of them did not), I won't regret trusting. I would be disappointed, yes, but I would not be lost. I still have One who will never let me down.

Ladies (because I know some of you read)--I love you and I trust you. It will all work out someway, somehow. Don't throw your trust out the window, ok?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

You gotta have faith.....

A year ago yesterday, I got up at 5:30 am. I cried when the alarm went off. I cried in the shower. I cried while I got dressed. Then, I cried while I woke Kade up, nursed him, and dressed him.
I got in the car and drove 5 minutes away--and I left him.

I went back to work for the first time in 9 weeks.

It didn't matter to me that he was with his grandmother (though I knew she loved him and would take excellent care of him). It didn't matter that I would be home in 8 hours.
All that mattered was that I was leaving my baby to take care of the children of others. That didn't make sense to me. I kept saying, "It's just not right." I didn't mean that I felt guilty or bad; I just knew it wasn't where I was supposed to be, but I couldn't do anything about it.

There are those who would say that I should have just quit anyways and that it's wrong to be a working mother. To those people: I would do anything to make sure my family has what they need. I wanted to "just quit" every single day that I was back at work, but I had a contract to fulfill and a family to protect.

I knew in my very heart of hearts, however, that I was supposed to be home. I taught my students nouns and verbs and Shakespeare. I did everything that I was supposed to do, but I knew that my calling was no longer with them. As I've said before, I had to believe that God wanted me home, too. That He wanted me to be happy and to have the desires of my heart. I had no idea how it would happen, but I had to have faith.

That morning however-October 8, 2009-I was not a picture of faith. I sat in my car and cried, I kicked the floorboard of my car and pounded my fists on the dashboard. I threw a hissy fit in front of God and begged Him to save me and He made me walk in that building anyway. You see, sometimes, there would be no point in having faith if we were just handed whatever we wanted without any discomfort.

To see where I was on that day a year ago, and to see where I am now......well, it just doesn't make any sense on this earth. Thank God that He's the master planner because I, with my two year-old temper tantrums, definitely would have messed things up! Thank God that I'm not where I was and I'm not who I was.

Now, I am going to go back to bed and cuddle my sweet boy some more before he gets too big.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

My first time

Kade threw up today for the first time. On me. More than once.
It's strange. I'm usually a contagious gagger. You know, one of those people who immediately gags and sometimes throws up when someone else does.
With Kade, my first instinct was to pick him up and hold him. Poor guy.
I even cleaned it up without gagging.
Ah, and so goes the life of the SAHM.
In all serious, if you get a chance, pray for him today. The picture is him on my lap this morning watching Monsters, Inc. Please ignore my unwashed self in the background.
He's napping right now, so he hasn't been sick in a couple of hours.
Praying for a good, clean, healthy rest of the day!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Fall Food

I love to cook, but it's hard for me to try new things with a very small, but very cute person hanging onto my leg, begging to be picked up.

See what I mean?

However, I've gotten to make several new things in the past couple of weeks.

First, I tried The Pioneer Woman's apple fritters.

I don't have a very good camera, so this picture in no way does them justice, but they were finger lickin' good. No, really. I licked every bit of the powdered sugar off of my fingers. They would have been even better with some apple butter, but I didn't get any until the next day. I'm going to try them again soon (considering there is a 5 lb. bag of apples in my fridge that my husband ignores and my son doesn't like).

The second thing I made was Moist Pumpkin Spice Muffins, also courtesy of The Pioneer Woman.
Did I mention there was homemade cream cheese icing?


There was homemade cream cheese icing.

Then, I tried a copycat recipe of O'Charley's Loaded Baked Potato Soup. It was good, but not quite the same, so I had to go to O'Charley's on Saturday night and have some of the real thing. If you're interested in the recipe I used, though, here it is.

Since I had a cup of leftover pumpkin puree from the pumpkin muffins, I made a pumpkin cheesecake on Saturday. The recipe is a copycat of The Cheesecake Factory. I haven't had the real thing, so I can't vouch for the accuracy, but this one was pretty good! Here's the recipe for it. Sorry, no pictures, but I promise you it's worth it!

There are so many more things I want to try this fall! What are some of your favorite fall recipes?

Fourteen months old

I told you I wanted to do a picture post as soon as I uploaded my pictures to my computer, so here it is.

It's hard to believe my baby is 14 months old on Wednesday!

This is Kade singing "Happy Birthday" to his Poppa (my dad) on his birthday.

Sharing birthday cake with Grandad. Yum!

Kade and I at the park one warm, sunny day before it got cold. Yeah, last week.

What a beautiful smile! He loves to play outside!

Enjoying his new swing.

So fly.

Auntie C and Kade equally engrossed in Veggie Tales.

Kade glaring at the ducks who tried to attack us when we fed them at the park.

He is so close to walking that it's scary. He actually has taken a couple of steps, but nothing consistent. Everyone keeps saying, "Oh, once he starts walking, you'll wish we wasn't." He's into everything already and crawls about as fast as a person could run, so I don't know if there'll be a big difference.

Auntie C took a lovely series of pictures on Saturday of Kade eating Corn Pops out of a family size box. (What can I say?! I was out of organic bunnies!) I'm going to have to get her to help me do a blog with them. To those of you who wouldn't think I was the most terrible mother in the world They are hilarious!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Say it fast! Watch yourself!

I so wish y'all could hear me sing the title to this post because you would laugh your heads off. I have always aspired to be a rapper and even have a video entitled "Bacon, Egg, and Cheese" that some of you have seen. If you haven't, don't seek it out. Hopefully, my sister has completely removed it from her hard drive.

Anyways, word vomit. Most of us have a problem with it at some time or another, right? You think something and it just comes flying out of your mouth before you can stop it. I probably do it even more than you. Luckily, I am too timid to be so bold to anyone other than family or very close friends. Unfortunately, though, family and friends are the people who are hurt the most when we say things without really thinking about the consequences of our words.

With the internet, word vomit has taken on a new meaning. We have plenty of time to think about things before we type them and there's also a thing known as the "Delete" key, which allows you to type something and then erase it before you send the message to a person or make public whatever you're typing. However, our little fingers seem to fly across the keys faster than we think. Also, since we're not face to face with all of the people who read our words, we're bolder and sometimes more foolish.

I typed a message to someone last week about an issue that was very petty. I didn't really think about it until after I pushed "Submit" and then felt terrible about what I had said. My feelings would have been hurt if someone had sent the same message to me. *sigh* I apologized, but there's no Delete key after your words have been sent. When we talk to someone face to face, there's definitely no delete key after the words have come out of your mouth. You can apologize, but you can't take them back.

We put all kinds of things out there on the internet for the public to see. I, for one, am definitely more verbal on the web than I am in public. However, there are two things that I refuse to talk about on the internet: my marriage (Except about how awesome my hubby is! He really is!) and my finances. I don't mean discussing privately between friends; I mean Facebook status out there for everyone to see public. Because c'mon--you may have 250 (probably more) Facebook friends, but for most of us, they're not all close friends that we want to know your private business. Most likely, people are going to remember what you've said far longer than the issue actually lasts. Our fingers can type something really fast, but the impact will probably last a lot longer. So, even though you're tempted to say it fast, watch yourself!

Oh, you have no idea how much I want to type "yo'self", but I will be ridiculed by the people in real life who read my blog, so I will restrain myself.

And at this point, I've probably said too much, so.........

It's finally October here, so I am going to enjoy this beautiful fall day with my gorgeous boy and my handsome hubby (who is actually home today), after they wake up from their nap. Oh, and also spend some time with my beautiful sister and her charming boyfriend, who are coming home today. Then, I'm going to top off the evening by going on a date with Michael. Tomorrow, I'm going to go to church and make a pumpkin cheesecake. Perfect weekend!

By the way, I have a cool little widget on the sidebar of my blog that tells me the location (just City/State, not IP address or anything creepy) of all the people who read my blog. Comment sometime--or at least send me an e-mail to the address at the top of my blog. I'd like to see who some of y'all are!

Happy weekend, friends!