Thursday, February 07, 2013

Deep breath in....and breathe.

I went and got a very much needed, very overdue massage last nite.  It was heavenly.  So much so I booked another one for 2 hrs next week.

Ahhhh....breathe.

It was heavenly...and painful.  But the good kind of pain where you know something good will come of it if you can just hang on.

Kinda like my life for the past 3 years.

When we lost our home to foreclosure in 2010, I couldn't breathe for awhile.  It just hurt too much.  The pain was so overwhelming at times that I just kinda shut down.  Yet, I knew, even when the pain was the worst, that God was right there, not waaaaay over THERE, but right HERE in the midst of the pain, holding me, carrying me through.  I knew He had a plan, I could see how things were working out to HIS good, for HIS glory, but still...the pain was intense.

Losing our home where all 3 of our boys were born (no, not literally with home births...but, you know what I mean!) where our story had begun, so many chapters of our lives were written on the walls...sometimes literally when the big boys were little.

It was a big, 2 story, 5 bedroom, 3 bath, 3 car garage house that had a total of 11 rooms.  Nice, quiet neighborhood, nice neighbors, great location, etc.  We moved from there to a 4 room building with a 3/4 bath.  Not 4 bedroom, just 4 rooms.  It was an old office building built in the 50s.  On the church property where my dad was pastor.  Next to my parents house.

The same house I grew up in.

Yep, we moved back home.

The office building was actually used as an office...by my dad and mom.  The pastor and his wife.  For church stuff.  They moved out all the stuff when we came down.  Did I mention it was old??  And drafty??  And spiders??  Oy, don't even get me started on the creepy crawlys, that'll be another story another time...when I'm NOT about to go bed!  And then there were the mice....oy.

We shared a backyard with my parents, and we shared a kitchen.  We actually eventually turned one of our 4 rooms into a kitchen area complete with frig, table and a couple chairs, a microwave and toaster.  Our bedroom had our bed, a couch, desk, bookcases...it was our bedroom, office and living room.

The big boys we put in the other 'big' room, even though none of the rooms were 'big'.  They had their bunks, a couch, shelves, all their toys, and it was always a mess cuz there just wasn't a place for everything.  The youngest got his own room and had the best deal cuz he had the most space.  Problem was, he spent almost every nite sleeping with us, so it didn't really matter what kinda room he had!  So, we moved the big boys in with him and that worked out pretty well cuz then we turned their old room into the playroom, left the couch and toys and put a tv with the old xbox in there and they were happy.

That was life.  Very condensed.  For over two years we lived in that place.  Big change from our old life.

But...God was changing me.

I remember the first time Hubby was gone to Africa and we got a ton of rain.  Rain, rain and more rain.  I woke up one morning and went down the hall to our itty bitty teeny weeny bathroom....and sloshed thru water on my way.

WHAT??!!

I went over to my folks and told them that we were being flooded...their response??

"Ya, it does that around here"

Uhhhh....


o.O

Soooooooo....

I go back to our place and try and figure out where it's coming in.  It wasn't coming in from the roof, but rather the wall.  The back of the building was partially in the ground (property was on a hill) by about a foot and a half.  I went around back to figure out what could be done and figured the fastest easiest way would be to put a tarp over the roof in the spot so it'd divert the water away from where it was coming in, and drain out of the yard a different way (instead of draining thru my house!)

I don't like ladders.

They go UP.

I don't like heights.

And it was raining.

REALLY raining.

And it was almost dark.

And REALLY raining.

And cold.

And raining.

Anyway, you get the picture.  It was miserable.  Cold, wet, dark and I had to climb a ladder and climb up on the roof to finagle a tarp that didn't wanna be finagled.

I was kicking myself for not having my Last Will & Testament ready cuz I just KNEW I was gonna fall off and break my neck.

And not in the I can't walk kinda break either.

Obviously, I survived to tell the harrowing tale.  But, I did a lot of crying out to God for help and protection, and just a lot of crying, although that came later.

I DID manage to get the tarp up, secured with all kinds of whatever I could find in the yard (just happened to be in the area of the yard that my parents had been collecting junk for 25 years)  So a MAN woulda done it differently, woulda figured out how to attach it with some gadgety doohicky, but *I* didn't have that luxury so I used what I had.

And it worked.

T'weren't pretty, but it worked.

The water stopped pouring in my place!!

But.....the damage was done.  It was soaking wet.  I wasn't done, couldn't relax, couldn't crawl in bed and be done with it.

Actually, I think I did crawl in bed and leave the rest for morning.  But THEN, I couldn't relax.  Had to find the shop vac and start sucking up the water that was just standing on top of the carpet.  The good news was the foundation was concrete and the carpet was those carpet tiles that you peel and stick.  The bad news was....we had just laid those carpet tiles not too long before!

So, finally got most of the water up, but still had some water coming in...just a little, but a little is all that's needed to start a puddle that gets the carpet all wet again...and stinky.

Man, was it stinky!!

So, off to the hardware store I went.  Looked at the concrete patch stuff.   Figured out what would work and went to town patching.  Patched up every crack I could see on the outside and patched up a huge spot where the crack in the foundation was at where it was originally streaming in.  It was also leaking in the baby's room (this was before we moved the other two in) so I made sure to patch up outside his room really good too.

In the next year and half after all that....it never leaked again.

What I did wasn't pretty, somebody else coulda done a lot better job.  But I did it, and it got the job done.

Sometimes, God calls us to do a job and we say....ya right, there's no way I can do that!!  Are you serious?  Me???  I can't do that, it's too hard, I'm not equipped.  But He just waits patiently...and we have to make that choice.  What to do, follow or not...obey or not.

If we DON'T follow and obey....there is Grace.  And forgiveness.  He's not gonna be there with a hammer and nail us to the wall over it.

But, if we DO follow and obey....there is Grace...and blessings.  This is something I've only just figured out as I work out my walk with Him.  There is always Love, there is always Grace...but there isn't always blessings and rewards.

I climbed up the wobbly ladder with my rubber knees a knocking and teeth chattering while trying to hold onto the tools I brought up and a flashlight to see with.  I talked to God...and not all of it was nice either...but it was funny!!  I remember LAUGHING while up there cuz well, it was definitely one of those laugh or cry situations, and I remember laughing with God cuz I could just feel His presence and how silly I must look and what a GREAT sense of humor He has.

Seriously, God's got a great sense of humor.

When all was said and done, I was able to experience something I hadn't before, or at least in a long time.  That of pride that I did it.  I conquered my fears, and did what had to be done cuz it HAD to get done.  There was NOBODY else around that would do it.  Obviously, Hubby woulda been out there if he was home, and he felt horrible that it happened while he was gone (but isn't that how it always is??  As soon as hubby leaves...things hit the fan)

I got to experience that and it served me well over the next couple years with Hubby being gone for that 4 months, then another month another time and the 3.5 mos last year.  Each time he left, something happened.  But building on that nite in the rain, I knew I could handle it.  I knew I wasn't alone, that the Creator of the entire EVERYTHING was by my side and through Him...I could do it all.

Pain...hurts.  My shoulders and back are still sore.  But from that pain...the tension that I've been carrying around for months is a little less.  And next week I go back for a 2 hr massage....and it's gonna hurt!!  But then, the tension will be almost gone.  The stress and tension of packing, worrying, fretting, packing, moving, unpacking.  It's almost gone.

Deep breath in......and

BREATHE!!

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Let's do this thing

"I'll be back!!!"

Well.  Hmm...glad ya didn't hold your breath on that one, huh?

To be honest, I had every intention of doing it.  Of coming back and getting active again on the blog.  But then, Hubby went to Africa and the new school year started and we started packing to move, and there was a big birthday party in October, and 30 days of Thankfulness in November and Hubby came back from Africa and there was more packing and Christmas and MORE packing and then we moved.

4 days after Christmas.

And so, I've been a little busy.

But.  Life is settling down and time to revamp a few things.  I won't guarantee I'll post often, cuz well, really, my track record in this department SUCKS, but I will at least try.

I've got some things to say, and things to work out, stuff I want to do in life and places to go.

See, the past 3 years have been our years in the wilderness...our nomad years.  Our healing years.

But now it's time to LIVE.

Life is waiting....and I'm ready!

Monday, October 01, 2012

Weary

I am weary.

Oh so weary.

I feel weary, and tired, and bluuuuuuueeee.

*ahem*

Sorry about that.  I get that from my mom...that, breaking out into singing with whatever you're saying.

Ya, drives my boy's nuts, too.

But seriously, I am tired.  And beyond that, I'm weary.

We're moving in 3 months.  Or, I should say, 3 months from now we'll either have just moved or be moving that day, or something like that.

You get the idea.

Hubby has been out of the country now for 7 weeks, 2 days.  Seems a lot longer and yet doesn't seem like that long.  I feel like so much has happened in the last 7 weeks!!!  We do keep in touch daily so that's good, but long distance relationships are HARD.  Soooooooo hard sometimes.

We've heard that Hubby will most likely not have a job when he gets back.  We're appealing the decision of the board, and we'll know by early next month, but we're pretty certain they'll stick by the decision.  There's about a 1% chance of them changing their minds, so anything's possible!!

We started school three weeks ago.  It's been a blur.

Seriously, we went from barely doing anything to doing something almost every day.  Co-op on Monday, Awana on Tuesday, grow group on wednesday, karate on thursday, youth group on Friday, church on Sunday.

Rinse and repeat.

Granted, grow group is just for JR, and at nite.  Awana's at nite.  Karate is at nite as well, but we haven't gotten around to going cuz the boys took the summer off and we've just been B.U.S.Y.  And same with youth group on Friday for LP, it's during our Friday nite church service so it's just not somtehing we're used to doing yet, and again, we've been B.U.S.Y. so haven't quite made it there yet.  But, we're hoping to do the karate thing tomorrow and youth group on friday.

Let's hope.

A week ago Sunday I was having a really rough day, just very weary, exhausted both physically, mentally, emotionally, etc.  I don't have a local support group so sometimes it's just the little things of having someone give you a hug...when you haven't been hugged by anybody but kids in a long while.  Or having somebody to watch the kids that knows, loves and understands your kids.  Having somebody's house to go to besides my own, to just hang out and talk and chill and just be.

I texted back and forth with my mom for quite awhile.  Her moving to TX in May wasn't/isn't easy on either of us.  But it was easier to text than talk cuz I was already crying while texting, and you KNOW how hard it is to talk while crying.  And there's just something about hearing mom's voice when your heart is hurting that just makes it all fall apart and I knew I'd be doing the ugly cry thing.  So, we texted.  And talked later. ;)

I took a nap and then took the boys to Target to get a couple things I needed for the next day's co -op class that I was teaching on ICE CREAM.  Yes, my co-op rocks.  On the way home, my check engine light came on.  And of course, I don't know if it's something serious or something that can wait a year.  So I call the gal from the co-op and let her know about it and that I wouldn't be able to be there the next day as I'd be taking my vehicle.

I take the car in, get a rental (which was a whole other crazy tale) and wait to hear the damage.  $1100.

*gulp*

OUCH!  Seriously???  the check engine light was actually just a little hose thing that was a super easy fix.  But they found that that clanking noise that the front end had been making was a broken shock and sensor.  Oh, and the brake line was kinked really bad...miracle they still worked.

*sigh*

Thankfully I had the $ to cover it and the rental.  I had literally barely enough to cover both of those, and before that I was thinking....wow, I'm actually gonna hit a payday and HAVE money in the bank.  And then it was all gone.  :(

But, honestly, I'm thankful God provided that extra when He did.  Sure, I had other plans for it (moving in 3 months, remember????), but it's better than NOT having the money at all!!!

So that all took place Monday and Tuesday, Thursday I took the boys to see Disney Live: Phinease and Ferb, Friday I took the boys for a special dinner at Red Robin cuz that's one of their fav places.  Then got home and realized I forgot about one of their activities so rushed them off to that, took Kian to the park and then grabbed some pizza with him at Godfathers.  He had fun playing the games and pizza watching.  And one small pizza is more than enough for him and I...a far cry from when I'm feeding his brothers!!

So, it was a busy week with highs and lows and everything in between.  I'm so thankful I don't have to do this in my own strength and SOOOOO thankful for God's grace and mercy and that my boys forgive me again and again for falling and failing as a mom.  I'm looking forward to getting a break when Hubby gets home.  Though...it won't be anything 'away' since we'll be ramping things up to move as soon as he's back.  But still.  At least my partner will be back!!

Time for zzzzzzzzs


Sunday, September 23, 2012

What???

Oh good grief.  I blinked and it's the end of September already.

Sheesh.

I will be back to update more very soon, but it's almost 11:30 and it's been quite a day and I desperately need some sleep.

Have no fear tho cuz I'LL BE BACK! ;)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Hurricane update

So, the hurricane sort of stalled....but it's more of a tropical storm now.  But it's parked a couple months away.  We'll know more then.  For now, everything is 'normal'.

If, saying goodbye to Hubby for 4 months is 'normal'.

Although, it kinda is.  He does travel for work, and it's usually for 4 months at a time, so, ya, I guess it is 'normal', but every goodbye feels like anything BUT normal!!

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers, they were appreciated.  I'll fill you in more as soon as I get settled into the new normal.


Monday, July 23, 2012

10,000 Reasons....

Matt Redman's new song....10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) has been speaking to my heart all week.  I put it on to play wherever I'm at; in the car, at my desk, kitchen, shower, etc.  Songs just have a way of doing that to me.  Hooking me in and just have to play them out.

 This week has been hard.  I already posted about the hurricane and where we are with that.  But, this week has been hard....globally.

The Aurora shooting was horrific.  Words fail completely to grasp the evil that was let loose that day.

A friend of a friend lost her entire family; her two daughters and their dad, in a freak mudslide.

Another friend's husband died suddenly today.

Another friend of a friend went to be with Jesus today, leaving behind a grieving husband and their adorable 5 children.

My own family is still grieving after my cousin and his wife lost their 1 week old baby girl suddenly a couple months ago.

The grief is all around, almost unbearable.

Almost.

"Still my should will sing your praise unending.....10,000 years and then forevermore."

Marie from A Miniature Clay Pot wrote this week, after surviving the Aurora shooting...

"God is always good.


Man is not.



Don’t get the two confused.
We will continue to praise and worship our mighty God, anticipating that He will bring beauty from ashes, as only He can do."

She went on to say what us Christ followers believe, even in the midst of tragedy and overwhelming sadness.  You should definitely read the whole thing....here.  It truly is a blessing.

This morning we were blessed to hear John Lynch preach at our church again for the 2nd week in a row.  He spoke on forgiveness and I'm still processing it, and want to devote a post just to that.  I picked up his book The Cure, as well as the workbook that goes with, and Bo's Cafe, and can't wait to read them both as I know they'll be game changers for me.

And speaking of that, some other changes are gonna be happening around the casa...and I'll keep you updated on those are details unfold.    :)

But for now, it's after midnite.  About to turn into a pumpkin!!  Niters!!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

A hurricane update



So Hubby finally got word that a date has been set for the resolution of this.....black cloud hurricane hanging over us!!

August 2nd.

Two small weeks from today.

We will finally have some answers.  We will get to know one way or another what our immediate future will look like....like whether Hubby still has a job and/or what that would then look like, etc.

It sure is nice to finally know the when even though we still don't know what the outcome that will be.

That's ok cuz I know Who does and everything's gonna be alright.

Walk on


So, I recently reconnected with a friend of mine from high school and we started walking 3 nights a week.  She doesn't get off work til 8 at night so that works out perfectly for me cuz I get my second wind (or sometimes first if it's been one of 'those' days) in the evening.

Plus...it's cooler.  And while it's true that we're working up a sweat anyway....it's better to do it when the weather isn't fighting against us!

We've been doing this now for 3 weeks and the first 2 weeks, something always seems to come up on Friday.  The first week's Friday was when my boys had their surf lesson and I was WIPED out after that.  The second week's Friday was due to a twisted ankle on her part (but extreme laziness on my part so I was just soooo glad we weren't walking!!!)

This week, on Monday, she told me, ok, let's meet on Monday, Wednesday and THURSDAY this week, see if that helps us actually DO 3x a week!!  So, we did Monday.  We even did last nite.  And so far, we're still on for tonite.  LOL

BUT!!

Yesterday was....well.

It just was.

And the prospect of walking last nite was like...blech.  I wasn't very good company anyway so figured I don't need to dump this on her.  We've talked about it enough and we've just recently reconnected after not seeing each since high school, don't wanna scare her away with all my angst!



There's just something about being able to work out with a friend.  Something about that accountability partner that just makes it worth it to keep going that extra little bit.  My friend is one of the nicest gals I know and she would always be ok with skipping a night if something came up (and vice versa).  But that act of 'being ok with it' actually helps me keep showing up, keep going.

But...that said, all day I kept picking up my phone to text her not to come over.  But every time I did I kept hearing her say...."we've GOT to do 3x a week this week!!" And I knew she was right.  We needed to show that we're committed to sticking with this.  So, I'd put the phone down.  I ended up taking a short nap yesterday which helped some.  And I talked to my mom on the phone for awhile...which helped a LOT.  And before I knew it, it was 8:20 and she was pulling in the drive.  And I was ready.  Shoes on, walking clothes on.

Ready to get my walk on.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Eye of the hurricane.



I was talking to Hubby last night about what's going on in our life right now (stuff that I'm not at liberty to fully divulge all the details of,  but suffice to say it has to do with his job/career and our future).  And how it feels like there's this hurricane hanging over our heads, waiting to suck us up and throw us to the four winds. And how, most of the time I just ignore it and go on with my day; do laundry, fix dinner, take care of the kids, etc etc.

But then there are other times when I start thinking about it, and then the what-ifs start, and I look at the hurricane and see how big it is and how ugly and how much pain it's trying to cause and, and...it takes my breath away. I want to scream at it to go away. That it's not fair that this is happening to us. That this is happening to my husband. And I want to run away, scoop up my boys and hubs and just run and hide. Or just stay in bed all day. Try to hide in oblivion.

But.

Oh but wait.

Thank God there's a BUT!

My God is bigger than the hurricane. And My God says do not fear cuz He is with me - always, forever, and He loves us with a never ending, never stopping, always and forever unfailing love.  And this part of our story that we're in? This little chapter that seems OH SO BIG to us right now???  He says....It's ok...I've already read the whole book!!!   Just WAIT til you see what's coming up next!!!

So, I stay. And I wait. And I pray.  And the eye of the hurricane is calm....for now.  But I cast a weary eye at the hurricane above us once in awhile. And I say....

Bring it.







Friday, July 13, 2012

Summer Fun Camp

Lil Punkin is at VBS, or as our church calls it, Summer Fun Camp, this week. Drop off at 9:30, pickup at 3:30. Wow. If only Lil Boo and Jackrabbit coulda gone!!! But LB's only 3, not in kindergarten yet, and JR's not in 5th grade anymore. We had a lot of fun doing projects around the house, but that's a post unto itself!!

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Finding my voice again




Pardon me....is this spot taken??  No?  Awesome!  Lemme just dust this off here....there, that's better.  Whew, been awhile.  But, then, I think I've done 2 pasts in the past two years saying the same thing.  "Been awhile....but I'm gonna blog more!!"  And....well....it's been over a year and half since my last post.  How's that workin' for me!

Umm, fyi....this post will be a little....all over the place as I try to remember how this here "blogging" thing is done!

It's been a long time since I've felt good about writing, blogging or having a "voice".  Soooooooooo much has happened and majority of the time, instead of writing it out I closed it all up inside, which was slightly less than a good idea.  To say the least.

But, way back when I WAS blogging on a (mostly) regular basis...I had done what every one else seemed to be doing at the time.  I started following other blogs and joining all the daily memes like Mommy's a Fool Mondays and Tell it all Tuesdays and What the Heck Wednesdays, etc etc.  Well, that worked to get visitors and all that, but soon it was so hard to 'keep up' with all those daily things on top of that little thing called 'life', and I soon burned out.  And I became obsessed with how many people visited me that day....and how many left comments.  And on and on.  Comments are great, DON'T get me wrong (so please...comment!!) but that's not why I started blogging.  I started it cuz I needed/wanted to write.  I wanted to keep a record of my life that seems to be speeding by so fast. And if people wanna read it, great, hope they find it entertaining and inspirational.  If not, no biggie.

But another thing that happened was LIFE.  I eluded to a lot of it in my last post, way back at the beginning of '11.  There were things going on that I needed to talk about...and couldn't.  Which really was a sucky place for a writer to be, for sure.  But then life continued to change and move ....at the speed of light sometimes...and then I COULD talk about it....but by then I felt like I had lost my voice.

I tried to pick up blogging again....but it just wouldn't take.  The desire wasn't there.  The words wouldn't come.

And life continued to change and move.....at the speed of light sometimes....and now, I feel like I'm finally finding my voice again.


BUT FOR NOW...SLEEP!

It's 12:45 in my neck of urban woods and officially July 4th, so......



HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!!

Hope you have a WONDERFUL day, enjoy your freedom and have some FUN!!