Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Day 332: I Can't Wait


For Christmas the kids aren't getting a bunch of toys (which they never really do...), and they ARE getting a pet! Our very first pet, with fur. That's much different than one that has a lifespan of approximately 3 months.

He's going to stay at the shelter until it's closer to Christmas. But I can hardly wait.

Lord, thank you for making pets, and that we can have one.
I pray that this new little friend will bring even more joy to our home and be a blessing. 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Day 331: A Little Different

Sometimes things just come together differently than you think they will. The general plan for our household income is that Casey earns the bulk, and then I work eight hours a week to make up for the rest that we fall a little short with just his paycheck. The trick is that I have to get that minimum-ish of eight hours a week. It's not much, but that's about what we need me to do, and because of the way I get paid, it's nice to have the consistency of those eight hours.

Hours are really tight at my work right now though. Through Christmas, there just isn't much work and so hours get cut. My hours were cut this week. That doesn't bode well with our general financial plan. And Christmas is coming. That means there's extra treats to buy, and little gifts to give. We don't do anything crazy, but it just kind of adds up, you know?

This has happened before, and we've always been fine. It creates frustration for me because you would think that I would be able to get a measly eight hours at a part-time job, but I guess thing aren't always what you think. They don't go the way you think.

In light of the disappointment of another week's worth of pay cut from our budget, Casey was given a check. As coincidence providence would have it, it was for about the same amount that I get for a week's worth of work.

So yeah, sometimes things come together a little differently than we expect.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Day 330: All the Time

I've been helping my husband with the counseling ministry at our church, and it has been really educational and good to support him in it.

One of the many things I like about it is that the counseling isn't meant to be a perpetually ongoing thing. It's meant to serve a purpose to help someone work through a situation through the truths found in God's Word. Tonight marked our last meeting with someone, and I am praising the Lord for the work that he has done in the heart of this individual. I'm thankful that I have been so encouraged in it, and that he has blessed the time.

He has answered so many prayers, and he has done such mighty things through the work of the Holy Spirit. I just give him praise for his goodness and kindness towards myself, Casey and the dear saint that we had the privilege to meet with.

God is good. All the time and in every circumstance, He is good.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Day 329: I did it!

Making things pretty is one of my favorite things to do. Whether it's spending a long summer rearranging the house and decorating for as cheap as possible, or making food look extra appetizing, making something prettier is something that brings joy to my heart.

So as I'm learning how to use GIMP, I took on the project of making this blog and our family one pretty.

And I did it! Go me!

It brought so much joy to my heart, and every thing that I was able to do successfully was such a victory for me. I'm so thankful for learning new things, and using my creativity, or building on the creativity of others, to make something that is fun, and well, pretty!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Day 328: A Thought

Serving my family doesn't make me a slave.

Withholding service to my family or with an unwilling spirit does make me a slave- to sin.

Lord, make me a servant, humble and meek. 
Lord, let me lift up those who a weak. 
And may the prayer of my heart always be, "Make me a servant." 

Friday, November 25, 2011

Day 327: It's Time to Hear Play the Music...

Remember the Muppet show?

Honestly, I don't remember it much. But I do remember enough about the movies and such to know that the new Muppets movie that just came out is really great. We went to it as a family on Thanksgiving, and it was one of the most enjoyable movies I've seen in a long time. The kids liked it, and my husband and I liked it. It was clean and cute and funny. I actually lol'd in the theater. So that's pretty good.

God gives us gifts of all kinds, and one of the things that I want to bring him glory for is all those things that make us happy, even movies. He created people with the ability to imagine, think, dream, laugh, and entertain. Movies, music, plays, and art all reflect qualities held by our Maker, and I rejoice in that.

Lord, thank you for Jim Henson, 
and that through his imaginative spirit, 
we have things in this world like Muppets, and Sesame Street.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Day 326: Thanks

This time of year, it's only natural to start looking at what has transpired in the past year. I was doing this, and I am ashamed at how little I have thought about all that the Lord has done for me and my family in the past year. Don't get me wrong. Obviously, I'm thinking about these things as I go along, but it's been a while since I looked at a big picture view of how God has moved in the last year.

My heart overflows thinking about all the ways that we have been provided for, or how prayers have been answered, or for all that we have been given.

A year ago this Thanksgiving, my husband didn't have a job. I was working as much as I could to earn as much as I could for our family. I was very divided in my heart, trying to balance work, home and supporting Casey in finishing his degree. The burden was heavy, and many tears were shed. It was a very trying time, but the Lord always gave comfort. He always provided.

Casey was finishing up his degree. He had worked hard for about four years, and finally, it was the end. He did it! In the spring, he was done. And he finished his Masters in Biblical Studies with straight A's. We made it through the long hours of study and writing to get to the end with minimal debt!

Also, about this time last year, Casey wrote and submitted his book. In this last year, the proposal was accepted, the book was written, and it was published. It is one of my favorite books, and I am really overjoyed to know that I am married to the man who wrote such an encouraging and gospel-filled book. To read the reviews that followed its publication, and hear the compliments and testimonies of it being a blessing, has been so encouraging to me. I am beyond grateful that my husband has had this experience, and I pray that he can do more and more like this.

In January my niece came home from Ethiopia. It was a long and wonderful journey to watch. Knowing that my own adoption in a little way inspired the adoption of this little girl thrills me to the core of my existence. She is beautiful. Her story is beautiful. God has poured out his most abundant grace on her life, and He gets all the glory!

About this time last year, we received the news that my mom was going to start a long health journey. Cancer was discovered, and although it looked very good, there was still a bit of a gnawing fear. No one wants to hear those words. No one wants to fight that fight. What followed in this year has been a roller coaster ride of ups and downs of health-related issues. My mom went through 3 surgeries, was on several absences from work, and had medical bills piling one on top of another. The stress of getting well, and paying for the privilege of treatment to get well took a toll. But God always provided. He always gave her strength and faith. This Thanksgiving she is healthy and cancer free. Hallelujah! Our God is a good, good God!

This Thanksgiving, I am only working one day a week. My husband has a job that isn't the best, but we have health insurance. We have been able to get off of assistance, and I am home most of the time. I still need to be creative in how to support our family, but the stress and the burden of our situation a year ago is much much different.

That brings me to my last blessing, and that is hope for the future. We always have hope in Christ. He has gone before us. As a new year begins, so will a long awaited journey to add another to our family. God has been actively working in our hearts to bring us to where we are, and I believe with all my heart that His work isn't done. It won't be done til I see him in glory.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Day 325: Storm Baking

Something that my mom introduced me to is baking. She is such a great baker, and is always looking for new recipes to try. Come Christmas time, I can count on my mom making a delicious feast of sweets. I've adopted this to a degree, and have come to really enjoy making new things. I have to limit myself though because of having diabetes and all (lame, I know.)

So this week I have gathered the necessary ingredients, and began on my mission to bless my family with some Thanksgiving treats. I have a lot of fun doing it, and it makes me happy to follow in my mom's footsteps.

Thank you Lord for the sweetest things in our lives.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Day 324: Conference

Norah is my smart little cookie. It's always a blessing to hear what others say about her, because, like most children, she's super-duper good for them, even if she (ahem) isn't all the time for me. So it was no surprise that her teacher wished she could get three more like her in class, and that when I looked at the new seating arrangement, my girl was trusted to be put in the back row.

I think it was an encouragement to me because sometimes we parents get caught up in trying to make sure our children are being instructed properly. We want them to obey and we put forth so much time, effort and prayer to that end. We often get lost in the wondering if they will ever obey perfectly the first time, or ever stop whining.

The truth is, though, that they won't. Do I always obey my Heavenly Father? Do I always approach life with a happy heart?

What I can do for my children is instruct them in the Word, discipline them when it's appropriate, and trust the Lord to work in their hearts to trust in Him and follow Him. The Holy Spirit doesn't need my help, but I am humbled that I can be used in my children's sanctification.

Conferences like that remind me of these things. I'm not a hopeless mess of a parent, just human, a human who is a sinner in need of grace every single moment of every single day.

Father, be my fount of ever lasting grace. I need Thee every hour.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Day 323: Grandma

Today is my grandmother's birthday, and she is so special to me. I don't know if I will ever know this side of eternity all the ways that my Heavenly Father has used her as a rudder for my sanctification.

It was my grandmother who paid my way through private school, which help pave a solid foundation in learning God's Word at a young age. It was there that I heard the gospel over and over again. It was there that I made friends that influenced what I thought and brought joy to my life.

My grandmother made a lot of things possible for me as I grew up. Living on a very small budget, with just my mom to lean on, my mother's mother stood as a dependable safety net. She helped and gave in ways that I'm sure I don't even know.

She has always been an understanding ear to hear, and a heart ready to empathize with me. She is a stalwart of comfort and support. Her tenderness and generosity compliment her beautiful spirit. She had dazzling green eye that laugh when she laughs, and a feisty streak that is to reckoned with!

Above you see me wearing her rings. I remember my grandmother's hands. I will always remember her hands. When I would spend the night at her house, she would get me settled into bed by gently tickling my feet and working her way up my body telling each part of me "Goodnight little toes... etc." I remember her wedding ring and diamond ring as they would sparkle in the glow of the lamp at the end of a day being thoroughly spoiled. It means so much to me to wear those rings every day.

My prayer is that my hands are used as they were by their previous wearer, with gentleness, hard work, and love.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Day 322: Confessing Calvinism

Today was another tough text in our church's series in Hebrews, and I'm really impressed with how carefully our pastor walked through a passage that is often misinterpreted.

I got a kick out of how he approached it, "I am looking at this text through the lens of a Calvinist!" (Those aren't his words exactly, but I can't  listen to the audio right now to confirm, but that's the gist)

While I heard a couple gasps (not loud ones, mind you), I heard one, "Amen!" in the crowd. I got a kick out of it!

In our experiences that God has walked us through, that word "Calvinist" has been a hot-button word (that's putting it mildly), and I am thankful today that I can sit in a church under a pastor that confesses to be a Calvinist, and know that there won't be a church split over it. Maybe someone will leave, but that's okay. People can pick their side.

My husband was telling me that he couldn't preach if he weren't a Calvinist. He had a lot of things to say on that topic. May he'll blog about it.

Being a Calvinist is having the profound conviction that nothing, absolutely nothing, that I can do will save me. My faith, my salvation, and my security rests entirely on the grace and work of Jesus Christ on my behalf. I was dead in sin, and if it had not been for the divine act of God, I would not have responded to the gospel. The faith I have is not my own. It is a gift of God.

Whew! It's nice to get that off my chest! Yes. I am a Calvinist too. I confess.

One of my favorites (Listen here):

My Lord, I did not choose You,
For that could never be;
My heart would still refuse You,
Had You not chosen me.

You took the sin that stained me,

You cleansed me, made me new;
Of old You have ordained me,
That I should live in You.


My Lord, I did not choose You,
For that could never be;
My heart would still refuse You,
Had You not chosen me.

Unless Your grace had called me

And taught my opening mind,
The world would have enthralled me,
To heavenly glories blind.

My heart knows none above You;

For Your rich grace I thirst;
I know that if I love You,
You must have loved me first.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Day 321: Seasonal Blitz

In contrast to last night, I went to a few places with specific things in mind, and I was faced with the holidays! Busy! Busy! Busy! There wasn't traffic so much as it was just people. Everywhere. I couldn't browse casually. I couldn't walk easily.


As flustered as I was (it's one thing to go out anticipating crowds, but another to be bombarded with them unexpectedly), I'm glad I got to go out with my mom, kids and niece. I'm looking forward to having my niece and sister over to do a craft that I got, and I anticipate making fun memories doing that!

Beyond that, I picked up paint samples. Oh boy. Watch out. I'm trying to make things pretty again!

Father, thank you for being peace in chaos, for simple fun in crafts, 
and for giving me a focus for a reason to celebrate during the holiday season.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Day 320: Nothing and Nowhere in Particular

Sometimes you just need an evening with people with no agenda or plan. That's what we got tonight. We got fellowship in doing nothing and going nowhere in particular. (In fact, we didn't go anywhere, but that's beside the point.)

It was fantastic.

Father, you have blessed us with great friends. 
Bless our times together, and may we have many more of them together.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Day 319: Fulfillment of the Law

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets;
I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them." 
Matthew 5:17
 Can I say this again?
I. Love. Jesus.
We're in the middle on the Sermon on the Mount in our Bible study. It's not easy to study that sermon because it's pretty hard-hitting to say the least! But one of my favorite things to look for when reading any of the gospels is how Jesus presents himself to the people. 
I used to wonder why the religious leaders of the day wanted to kill Jesus. He was healing people, and wasn't that a good thing? To me, it seemed perfectly normal for him to preach what he was preaching because I believe he is the Son of God. Why would you want to kill someone who spoke truth? 
I don't wonder that anymore. By God's grace, I understand a little more about where these leaders were coming from, and what exactly Jesus was saying.
I love his statement in the verse above. He came to fulfill all that was written in the Prophets and the Law. Basically, he's claiming that he is the embodiment of all that the Jews studied and believed. Everything was written pointing to him! If I didn't believe that was true, I would probably want him gone too. It's really no wonder to me at all, that things worked out the way they did. (Besides it being ordained by God, but I digress!)
To make this statement even more impressive is that it's in a sermon in which Jesus explains to the people what the Law was really telling them. He was piercing through the legalism and letter of the Law to get to the heart (literally) of the Law. (Not even the Pharisees could listen and not know that they too had sinned.)
 Anyway, thing number umpteen-million that amazes me about Jesus: He is the fulfillment of the Law. 

Jesus, thank you for being the fulfillment of the Law and for all that means to me.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Day 318: Fulfillment as High Priest

My favorite sermon series are when there is preaching through a book of the Bible. Topical sermon series have their place, but I like that just focusing on one book is like the meat and potatoes of bible teaching. The book that our pastors are tackling right now is Hebrews, and I'm glad we're going through it. It's not an easy book, but what I appreciate about my church is that overlooking difficult texts is not an option.

There are plenty of texts in Hebrews that are dripping with depth, and I am so thankful for it!

My husband introduced (A Better Rest: 11/06/11) the topic of Christ as our High Priest when he preached last week, and then our senior pastor piggy-backed it this week (A Better Access: 11/13/11). I. Love. Jesus.

We read the Jesus Storybook Bible to our kids, and what I love about it, is that it is a simple way to introduce children to the truth that ALL of Scripture is about Jesus, or pointing to Jesus. As we study Hebrews, this is idea is not lost!

Like I said, at our church, we don't shy away from difficult texts, and a while back we studied Leviticus (yeah, Leviticus!). Understanding the books of that law is so important! If you understand what a high priest does, and what God is communicating to his people about sin, and sacrifice, then it gives you a better understanding of what Christ has done and is doing on our behalf!

So where am I going with this?

I will tell you.

I am incredibly thankful that Jesus fulfills the role of a High Priest on my behalf. He offers me direct access to my Creator because of the perfect sacrifice he offered on the cross. He makes intercession for me perfectly, just as priests of old tried to do for the people. All the blood that was spilled, all the cleansing that was done, could not cover sins. There was still a divide between God and man. We needed a perfect sacrifice, and we needed a perfect High Priest.

Hallelujah! The curtain has been torn, and I am set free!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Days 316-317: To Let Go

I didn't post about this at the time because I'm a reasonable person (for the most part!) and filter some things that I allow to be "out there". On Sunday evening, I got a call from a friend at church who knows our heart for adoption, and told me about a little girl who needed a home. Without going into details, Casey and I felt that this was something to look into.

We've had some situations like this come up before. Sometimes you hear of someone who is pregnant or some other situation where there is a need for a child to be adopted. All of those instances have been dead-ends (obviously, otherwise I would have another child, duh!), and so I went into this news with a grain of salt, not anticipating anything really.

This time was different though. It was a little bit harder to swallow than other things. As it turned out, this little girl wasn't being relinquished for adoption, although with the little bit of history that I heard, it sounds like that is what will be best for her. That's what was difficult.

It wasn't even that I wasn't going to bring her home. It wasn't that I felt like we were the right family for her and I was disappointed that she wasn't going to join our family. Those thoughts weren't even an issue for me.

It was knowing enough about the situation, and enough about the foster system in our country to know that the road ahead of this little one will be a lot tougher than it would be if she were adopted. That's what broke my heart this week.

I began to think anew about the choice that my own birth mother made. I don't know the circumstances of my birth or the issues that surrounded her. The most important thing that I do know is that she let me go. She made a choice that most likely tore her apart inside, but she faced what was most hurtful and difficult to give me the best that I could have.

What she did has had arguably the most profound influence on my entire life. Her selfless act put me into my family where I heard and received the gospel, and as I think about every circumstance in my life from the places I've lived, to the people I've met, to the very family I belong to, all can be traced back to that one moment when she resolved to let me go.

Her choice points me to God's love, a love that is willing to give everything so that I can live. Her choice teaches me that parenting should always look selfless.

Birth mothers are the unsung heroes of adoption stories. We look at the families, and the journey they go through to decide to adopt and walk through the process. We marvel at the transformation in a child's life when they go from being an orphan to a part of their new family. But we often overlook the amazing, powerful and important decision that a child's first parent makes.

(Sometimes an adoption doesn't look like that, I know, but in most cases there is someone who is letting go.)

So looking through the lens that I have at the situation that was dropped in my lap this week, I guess maybe one can see how this one got to me. Because I personally know the impact of a selfless act in my life, and because I know what kind of life I was potentially saved from, my heart breaks when I hear of a little girl that isn't given what I have been given.

Why? I don't know. I don't know what God has in store for this little girl. I don't know what he has in mind for his glory in her life. I do know that he knows. He knows exactly what he is doing, and he will do all things for his glory.

That is the only comfort I have as I think about her future. Because my God is so big, and strong and mighty, I know that comfort is enough.

Lord, you know every detail of S****'s life, and all the people in it. 
You have a plan for her, 
and I pray that you would protect her and that she would learn your truths at an early age. 
Lord, I pray that the truth of the gospel would take root in her heart so that she can face every situation knowing that all will be worked for your glory. 
Protect her heart.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Day 315: On a Dime

I don't really get where the phrase "turn on a dime" came from, but I know what it means. All to well.

Yesterday was a very pleasant day with the crafting and funness. (Yes, funness. I'm sticking by it.) In the evening things began to turn. Enter cold. Then I couldn't find my Sunday school lesson book. Enter fret. This morning I found the lesson book in my Sunday school classroom, and saw that it wasn't a difficult story and I had a good craft put together. Enter relief. Then church, and it was so very encouraging and uplifting and God-glorifying! Enter worship. Back home, and there was sibling rivalry, building sinus pressure headache, and lack of sleep because of last night's frets that showed their ugly faces in my wretched face. Yet another dime turn.

We are fickle people. At least I am. So many things can make emotions and heart conditions turn on a dime- wherever that phrase came from. God's not fickle though. He's unchanging. He is the Alpha and Omega. He is always right, always just, always good, always constant.

He never turns on a dime.

Now I'm going to go Google the phrase's origin.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Day 314: Christmas Cards

"Christmas seems to come earlier every year."

Every year I hear this from someone. It never fails. I can count on it. I'm not sure I have an opinion one way or another. When I worked in retail clothing, it seemed as much, but now that I'm not out and about as much, I don't notice the moment that the Christmas decorations get put out.

That's okay with me. I like that I don't notice.

Today my friend and I worked on Christmas cards. I had made some this summer with my niece, and then made more at my open house. Then I got to thinking that I had already started, so why not just make all my Christmas cards this year? It's fun, and gives me something relaxing to do that allows for a creative outlet. So when my friend mentioned making cards, I suggested that we make some together.

It's like big girl play time!

We watched that last portion of Pride and Prejudice (the A&E version, of course), and worked on making fun cards with her ginormous collection of wonderful scrap booking paper.

My kids played and really behaved quite well while we just did our thing, and played a little with them. It was a great way to spend my day. I am so thankful to be able to do stuff like that every once in a while.

And hey, I'm just about done with Christmas cards, and it's not even Thanksgiving yet! Yippee!

Thank you for all the blessings of Christmas, and how it is a season to celebrate 
the greatest gift that I could ever be given.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Day 313: Dad

Today is my father-in-law's birthday, and I'm so glad that I can call him my dad. I don't have a father, or at least a relationship with my own father. And my husband's dad had become just as much mine as his. That's just an amazing gift that I have been given. And today, I am so grateful that I have a dad and that my children have such a great grandfather.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Day 312: The Cosby Show

I love the Cosby Show. So when I saw that I could watch it on Netflix, I was so pumped. I grew up watching Cliff and Claire dance, and all the kids fighting and laughing, delivering one-liners. The show was just great.

I'm so glad that there are things like that, that bring back memories and are still entertaining. I like I can watch them and simply have fun.

Sometimes we need stuff like that. I know that I do at least. So tonight I'm grateful for the Cosby Show and all the memories and laughter that it has brought to me both as a child and as an adult. I appreciate little things like that, and know that in every little thing that is good and brings joy, there is a Source from where it all flows.

I never want to forget that it is from the Lord that every thing that brings happiness to me is from the Lord.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Day 311: Car Sick

I've become slowly more aware of something about myself, and I'm not what has changed to make me this way; but nevertheless, it's happened. I get car sick.

I get car sick. I kind of noticed that I had issues with it after the kids were born, but i never went on that many car trips. So it was never really that much of an issue.

Then we drove to Disneyland. And back.

I did okay on the way down, but I will tell you, on the way back, it was a sad, sad story. I was tired, and I think that added to it. If I'm pretty well rested, then I can do okay, but I was so dizzy that I just laid down in the back seat of our van, and just tried not to throw up.

I learned something on that drive. I learned that I have the most patient husband ever. He just took control of the kids, went with the flow, and got us home as fast as he could. He didn't complain or whine that I was leaving him with all the driving and care for the children. He just did what he had to do while I was feeling nasty.

Wow. I am so blessed.

Thank you for my husband Lord.
He's the best friend I could ever have, and the best teammate ever!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Day 310: Grumps

I went to a meeting this evening with the school board of directors. I've never been to a meeting like this, and I will be honest in that I would prefer never to go to another. it was frustrating to say the least.

I felt patronized. I felt insulted. I felt shocked. I felt outraged. I felt discouraged.

You see, it's been recommended that my daughter's school be closed. It is being kept open this year, but next year it's on the chopping block of major budget cuts in our local school district. the superintendent spoke down to those in attendance assuming that we don't understand the budget crisis.

Yeah we do. We're normal people who, when there is a budget crisis, make immediate cuts to our household budgets and not waste every dime we have and then get forced into cuts. That's where the school district is now.

But I digress...

So I was there at the meeting to show them that I wanted my daughter's school to stay open. In fact, I was among several who couldn't hardly get in the door. The audience was a sea of red representing the Rosedale color.

I left feeling with a major case of the grumps, and a big feeling of helplessness. Questions keep floating around in my mind. All of them boil down to one question: What are we going to do with our children next year for their schooling?

That's a huge question.

I know a bigger God.

Lord give us wisdom in how to best help our children learn.
Lead us and guide us, and keep us held up by your peace.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Day 309: Made it!

I made it! I made it through October, and I made it through the first week of November with the open house!

I made it!

Big sigh of relief.

Thank you Lord for simply getting me through every single day!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Day 308: Papa Can Preach

Today I got to hear my husband preach again. That in itself is a blessing, and then add to that all the comments and sweet things that people say about my husband after he preaches. That just warms my heart.

He likes preaching, and I believe that he will someday preach more frequently. But for now, that's not God's plan, and I'm thankful for any opportunity that he gets to share God's Word.

Every time my husband preaches, it's nice to see how our children react, especially my daughter. She remembers more of his former pastorate, and she is more keenly aware of daddy's desire to work full time in ministry. On a Sunday morning when daddy is going to preach, she seems much more content. She knows that daddy is doing something that he's gifted to do, and even though she doesn't listen, I think she likes that he is simply preaching that morning.

So today that's what I'm thankful for. I'm thankful that Casey got to preach this morning, and that the Word went out, as it does every Sunday. But this Sunday it was from a very familiar source.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Day 307: Not even gonna try...

... to catch up on what I have missed. I just missed a bunch. October ran away with me, and that's all there is to it.

October held Upward Flag Football and Cheerleading, and we had both kids involved. Both of us were head coaches. I. Am. Not. A. Cheerleader. I'm going to be honest, and it's not something that I am proud of; but I used to think that cheerleading was really dumb. I thought it was too easy to be called a "sport". I thought it was silly that people could get varsity letters in high school cheerleading.

My tune has changed. It's not easy. I would practice and practice my brains out until I could learn a simple cheer. You have to have an awareness of what all your limbs are doing at the same time. I don't do that. I lack full body awareness, and it became a running joke on our squad about how many times Coach Kelly would mess up.

Yeah, I'll take a big, heaping piece of that humble pie, thankyouverymuch.

Getting through the Upward season was a challenge for me. I'm not one to do things unless they are easy. It's not something that I'm proud of, and I believe that God brought me to this task to show me this character flaw for his glory. If there is something that is too much of a challenge, I tend to just let it go. I could not do that this season. Nope. I was the coach. I had to be there. I had to actually teach these poor unsuspecting 6 and 7 year-old girls how to perform tasks that I could barely do.

Big. Slice. Please.

I'm so grateful for it though. God showed me that I can't just bail on things that are too difficult and that I need to try new things and stretch myself. If I don't, then I may miss our on a big blessing. I had eleven girls on my squad that I got to share the gospel with multiple times. By the end of the season, some of them were clinging to me and giving me huge bear hugs.

I guess it didn't matter if I could teach them a herky. (Oh yes I did just bust out some cheerleading jargon!)


In October, I also plugged along teaching Sunday school. I'm really loving my little ones. We have a blast. It's interesting what they remember. The biggest thing that they like, that I do, is I sing a good morning song. They love it! I love that they love that. God is so good to allow me the privilege of teaching these children every week.


One word. Disneyland.

We went to Disneyland. It is the happiest place on earth, and we were so excited to go. The kids hadn't a clue that we were leaving, and we told them the morning of. And they were so good the whole time. The only breakdowns that occurred were fatigue-induced, and that is just to be expected to some degree.

I may or may not elaborate more on that subject. It just depends on what comes to mind.


Finally, and I will not get into it a lot, but we are finally at the point where we feel that the time is right to start adopting. I did a little fundraiser, which will keep going until the 12th to get us started a bit, and it's just an exciting thing.

I will get into that more later, believe me.


In other news, I only spent $3.50 on Halloween, and that's only because our children chose to be bugs. It was too easy to put together bug costumes for myself and my husband. We were a spider, butterfly, ladybug, and bee respectively. We had a very buggy Halloween.

And I still haven't watched Luther this year marking the anniversary of when Luther posted the 95 Theses. I find this unacceptable, but what are you going to do?

God is good. He is good all the time. He's good when I mess up the words in a cheer, and he's good when I see smiling faces on kiddos at Sunday school. He's good when I spin with my family in a giant teacup. He's good when he guides my path. He's good when I tape giant black dots on my shirt and wear black Fuzzoodles on a headband.