Thursday, March 20, 2008

1st day of Spring . . . Are you blooming?!

Last summer I watched as several precious daffodils continued to bloom where they had been planted years before by my neighbor. Right at the water's edge, there had been dozens of beautiful, proud, sun-yellow daffodils that had cheered us up and spoke of spring as we sat on the bench by the community "lake" (really a man-made drainage area) behind our house. A few years ago our neighbors moved, and the meticulously cared for area soon was overcome with weeds. Along came a few hurricanes and tropical storms that flooded our little lake and the edge started to grow closer and closer to the bench. Many daffodils were lost in the erosion, and so the last 2 summers I have rescued those few that were left . . . still trying to do their job as they hung almost sideways over the water's edge, unknowingly about to perish.

Last year I removed the final ones and planted them in my front yard near my mailbox. Their blooms were gone for the season, and so I was mainly planting the bulbs and stems. I was looking forward to the sunny flowers popping up next year to welcome the warm weather of spring! However, I was a bit surprised this year when they did. I planted them, expecting them to face the street - welcoming our mailman and other guests who came to visit. However, they decided to continue to face the lake . . . which can't even be seen from our front yard! :) I'm sure it probably has something to do with how I planted them or with the sun, but I just get a chuckle out of seeing my "rebellious" flowers facing the wrong way! It made me think . . .

I drove by a sign at a church last week. It always has some cute or corny saying on it - reminding and encouraging us in some aspect of our Christian walk, like "What is missing from this CH_RCH? . . .U are!" You know the signs I mean! This time it said "Bloom where you are planted". In our American society, we are so accustomed to having a choice . . . of what to eat, where to live, what kind of job to have, who to be friends with, where and when to go to church, etc. In many countries, men, women and children do not have that luxury. They cannot physically get up and move when the going gets tough or just because they feel like it. They can't just go down to the store or pop into McDonald's when the mood strikes or their pantry doesn't have their "favorite" foods. They may not even have a choice as to whether they will even eat that day! We are so blessed here in America!

What spoke to me though, was that I know I have spent many a day complaining about where God has "planted" me in life right now . . . . raising 5 young kids who are home with me almost all day every day, cleaning my house (over and over and over again!), making meals, intervening in fights/arguments, etc! I was a L&D nurse and Childbirth Educator (and part-time doula) for 10 years - and I LOVED it! It was my identity . . .what I did . . .who I was . . . my passion. When God called me to stay home full-time (I had 4 kids at that time). . . I fought it tooth and nail for years. I slowly, slowly weaned myself down from working so much - and then finally took the plunge and obeyed God. He was changing where I was to be planted - much like my flowers. However, just like those flowers . . . I kept looking back . . .waiting for the chance to get back to the water . . . wondering when (and if) God would ever let me go back to being a nurse . . . or doing SOMETHING outside of this house. I was blooming in the sense that I was "doing my duty" . . .but I wasn't really doing it right (with the right attitude) or to the best of my ability. I was definitely depressed the whole first year of being at home 24/7. Then I allowed God to change my heart!

God showed me a vision one day while praying. I was going across a river - stepping on large stones/rocks to get to the other side. I knew where I was going and I could see the spot I was aiming for. But then a HUGE rock stood in front of me. . . . too large to even see over it or go around it. This is what God said . . .

"You CAN do it on your own strength. You CAN climb over it, or struggle to go around it Lori. But What I would rather you do, is to stand where you are and let the water rise around you. Let it rise and then float with it down stream. You can trust me. Will you trust me?"

I wasn't so sure I wanted to go "downstream". What was down there? I KNEW what was across the water (I was going to be a midwife) . . . but I didn't have a clue what was downstream. That part scared me. After struggling with it, and then realizing that I was miserable the way I was, I decided to take the risk . . . . I let go and started to float . . . with God . . . not knowing where it would lead or what would happen to me. And do you know what? . . . . . It led me to actually enjoying being at home more (not every day though. :) You know what I mean!) . . . and it brought me to the place where I felt that I could definitely handle bringing one more child into the house through adoption. That was HUGE for me - as I was a card-carrying member of the "Four-no-more" Club! :)

So I've been home for 3 or 4 years now, and lately my heart has been stirring again. . . . wanting there to be more . . .wanting to know "what's next, Lord?" . . . ready to get out of the house and "doing the Lord's work". Then that sign came along . . . It's not that I had turned back around to look at the water . . . I was facing forward . . .but just wanting more. There are seasons for everything in life. A time to live, a time to die. A time to plant, a time to reap. A time to have all my kids home, and a time to see them go off to school (and eventually work, college, marriage . . .). But am I "Blooming" where God planted me? Unlike my plants, I do have a choice . . .I could disobey, uproot and replant somewhere else (in what I do each day) . . . but I won't be where God wants me. I won't be able to greet those that He brings down my path. I won't be able to cheer on and cheer up those that live at my house like I should. I need to learn "how" to bloom where God has planted me for this season.

My "world" is relatively small here . . . 5 kids, a husband, several pets, and a few neighbors who might venture outside during the day. Then once a week - church, once a month - our adoption group, and twice a month - MOPS. Pretty much the same people each day, each week, each month. I was a bit jealous of my sister in NYC and all the people she comes into contact with each day! What opportunities she has!! But wait . . . what about my trip to Walmart every 2 weeks? What about the people I email, who read this blog (all 2 of you!) . . . even the business men and women I might talk with while we refinance, or look for new windows, etc? God has slowly been showing me that I CAN bloom where He's planted me and REALLY make a difference in people's lives . . . . EVEN as a SAHM! I don't have to have a big ministry like Joyce Meyers, or Joel Osteen . . . but I CAN influence my little world around me . . . brighten up the days by blooming where I've been planted. It may be through a scripture at the end of my email, a kind word or offer of help to someone at the store, or some of my ramblings on this blog. It might be by bringing food to a new mom, or an injured neighbor. It's also by loving my kids and raising them to love God, then love themselves, and finally love others.

Maybe that Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness,and Self-control that blooms from me will be able to not only impact those in my "world", but in the world around us as well! You never know!!

I'm going to bloom anyways!

How about you?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Invisible Mom

In our MOPS group today, we were reminded of this story by a seasoned mom in our church. (I think this was originally printed in our MOPS magazine.) It was just a nice reminder and a confirmation of what God has been saying to me lately when I ask Him over and over again . . ."What do you have NEXT for me? What do you want me to be doing right now? Isn't there something else (besides "just being a mom")?" He told me that He is preparing me (for whatever He has for me in the future) through raising my kids now. It is in being a Mom, and raising 5 godly Christian men and women that I will be "trained" for what lies ahead. This IS my ministry! He showed me a picture of 5 pillars (not sure if they were lighthouses or not - but they were huge!) all along the eastern seaboard - facing the Atlantic Ocean. These were my kids - all grown up - standing tall and strong - facing the ocean, the waves, the wind, whatever might come their way. They are so strong, that they will not fall - no matter what. That made me want to work even harder - to build these strong towers - towers of faith, of love, of peace, of gentleness, of joy and more! So . . . for today . . .I am continuing on in laying foundations, securing the rods that will support the cement walls. I'm in the construction business right now. :) I can live with that!

What has God called you to do?

-Lori :)

The Invisible MOM

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?" Obviously not; no one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible Mom.

Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it?" I'm a satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney Channel?" I'm a car to order, "Right around 5:30, please." I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude - but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going, she's going, she's gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a hair clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, "I brought you this." It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: "To Carol , with admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees."

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work: No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names. These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished. They made great sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything. A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it." And the workman replied, "Because God sees."

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, "I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become."

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my daughter to tell the friend she's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, "My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table." That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want her to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to her friend, to add, "You're gonna love it there."

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Great Job, MOM!

Share this with all the Invisible Moms you know ..... I just did

Monday, March 17, 2008

Locks of Love

I'm sure that most of you have heard of Locks of Love . . . but have any of you ever been brave enough to grow your hair for a long time to be able to donate it? I keep thinking about it . . . . but once my hair gets to "that stage" . . . you know . . . the uncontrollable-all-you-can-do-is-put-it-in-a-ponytail stage . . . well . . . I give in and start chopping! I just can't do it . . .yet. I think the best time to grow it would be during the summer as I usually just wear it in a ponytail for 3 months anyways (we are always at the pool . . . and I am too hot to wear it down . . . and it just frizzes anyways in the humidity here!). Maybe this summer. . . . we'll see. :) I am proud of several of my fellow MOPS moms who have grown their hair out and donated 10-13 inches of hair each!! Way to go ladies!!

My daughter, however, was a brave soul. In fact, I learned that 80% of the hair donated to Locks of Love comes from kids! Way to go kids!! We really can learn alot from them!

How and why did my daughter decide to do this?

A couple years ago (at 6 years old), she started praying every night (and still does) for "everyone who is sick or has broken a bone to get better" (ever since she had broken her arm during her 3rd week of gymnastics! She thought she could do a flip already! She's a brave . . . or crazy . . . soul!). We started talking one day about how she could actually DO something for people who were sick . . . and I told her about Locks of Love. She didn't seem too interested at the time and quickly changed the subject. However, to my surprise, at dinnertime she announced to her dad that she was going to grow her hair for Locks of Love! She told everyone and anyone who wanted (or didn't want) to know! Little did she know it would take over a year to a year and a half for her hair to grow the required minimum length of 10 inches (from the bottom of her ear - the shortest she wanted it cut).

In December and Jan she was measuring her hair more frequently as it was getting closer to the 10 inches and she was very anxious to be able to cut it and mail it off! Finally, the week of Valentines day - we measured and it was over 10 1/2 -11 inches! Yeah! She was not going to let me put off cutting it any longer!

Here are the pics of the grand occasion!!

There are other organizations that will accept your donated hair as well. Locks of Love does make wigs mainly for kids who have alopecia areata (where they lose all their hair). Here are a few other organizations to consider as well. Some do not require as

Angel Hair for Kids
Wigs for Kids - Need at least 12 inches.
Pantene Beautiful Lengths - Hair only has to be 8 inches!
Canadian Cancer Society

And here's a good page that gives just a little more info for you.

Love to Know - Hair

So why don't you go for it?! My friend Andi who recently passed away (at the age of 35), had a beautiful wig that she wore while going through Chemo. I'm sure she was so thankful for the generous people who donated their hair to help her feel more beautiful during such a trying time! And this isn't just a thing for girls . . . boys have donated their hair as well (especially with the long-hair hairstyles that are around these days)! And if your hair is already VERY long . . . can you spare at least 10 inches . . . or more . . . to help out these kids and adults?! It's an easy thing to do!

God bless you all today!

Lori :)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Home schooling illegal?!

Now - I am only a "part-time" homeshooling mom (I really call myself a "Homework Helper"), but I have a ton of friends who are wonderful homeschooling moms who are doing an awesome job with their kids! I could not imagine being told that I could NOT homeschool my own kids . . .that it was actually ILLEGAL! Of course - I don't do well when anyone tells me I can't do anything! :) I guess that's the rebel in me. :)

Please read the article below and then go to to sign the petition objecting to this ruling if you have a moment. If it takes root, this kind of control could spread to other states as well. Sign the Petition here: . Listen to the full broadcast here:

California Ruling Banning Home Schooling

by Jennifer Mesko, managing editor

Focus chairman calls it an 'all-out assault on the family.'

A state appeals court has decided California parents without teaching credentials do not have a right to home-school their children.

The 2nd District Court of Appeals ruling could affect up to 200,000 home-schooled students in the state.

“The court is guilty of an imperious assault on the rights of parents,” said Dr. James Dobson, founder and chairman of Focus on the Family. “How dare these judges have the audacity to label tens of thousands of parents criminals — the equivalent to drug dealers or pickpockets — because they want to raise and educate their children according to their deeply held values?

"The case before them involved one couple — the ruling should have been confined to that one couple, not used to punish an entire class of people, the vast majority of them religious conservatives.”

According to the Home School Legal Defense Association, California is set to become the only state to deny the vast majority of home schooling parents their fundamental right to teach their children at home. The group will file an amicus brief in the case.

Dr. Dobson said Focus on the Family will do whatever it can to get the ruling overturned and to restore the basic rights of parents in California to determine how their children are educated.

“This is an all-out assault on the family, and it must be met with a concerted effort to defend parents and their children,” he said. “We will team with key allies and use every means at our disposal to make sure that not just every Californian, but every American, is aware of this miscarriage of justice. We will encourage them, by the hundreds of thousands, to make their voices heard on this matter.

"And we’re hopeful that, in the end, common sense and legal sanity will prevail.”

Dr. Dobson will discuss the ruling on his Friday radio broadcast.

Candi Cushman, education analyst for Focus on the Family Action, said the court's timing is horrible.

"This takes away recourse from thousands of parents in California who want to escape the government-enforced indoctrination in public schools," she said. "The Legislature recently passed a law that basically ensures that students get a one-sided, positive portrayal of homosexuality and same-sex 'marriage.' "

We are asking concerned citizens across America to sign a petition asking the state Supreme Court to "depublish" the case, which means to apply the case to the family involved — not to all California families.

Dr. Dobson will discuss the
California ruling on his Friday radio broadcast. Find a station or listen online.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Parenting with Love and Logic

Some of you may have heard of this - but I just wanted to pass it on just in case. This parenting style/technique has done wonders for our family - especially with my little "CEO's in the making" (aka - my strong-willed children)! :) We are not always consistent with it - but when we are, there is a huge decrease in the amount of anger, frustration and yelling that goes on around our house! AND my kids are learning to make wise choices for themselves! A double bonus!!

Check it out!

I also have a link on the right to the Parenting with Love and Logic website where you can get emails (encouraging advice, bits of info on how to succeed at this parenting stuff!), read articles, see video clips, download audio clips,etc.

Lori :)

Dr. Foster Cline (Love & Logic) will be on radio show/podcast tomorrow

Tue Mar 11, 2008 6:22 am (PDT)

Hi everyone. Dr. Foster Cline, of "Love and Logic" fame, will be my
guest on this week's show, Wed. March 12. Dr. Cline is a child
psychologist and the co-author of the immensely popular Parenting with
Love and Logic series of books and parenting workshops. We will talk
about how to raise responsible children.

You can listen live from 12-1:00 Eastern Time on March 12 by going to, click on radio and then click play. Call in
your questions for Dr. Cline at (347) 215-8510 or email me your
questions at dawn @

You can listen after it airs, by going to this same page on the
website and clicking on this show. And, my favorite, you can download
it as a podcast and listen whenever and wherever you want. You can
download it be clicking on the iTunes button on the radio page of

Please pass this information on to any group that might have an
interest, including any parenting groups you belong to.

Dawn Davenport
The Complete Book of International Adoption (Random House)
Host of the weekly internet radio show/podcast, blogger, and mom

Monday, March 10, 2008

Thinking of Having Kids?

OK - I just had to pass this on! Thank you Linda for bringing a chuckle and smile today! The sad thing is . . . I really do relate to it all! :) And I know there are many more steps I could add . . . . like trying corralling 5 cats, who do not always like each other, and peacefully get them out of your house (church, store, etc), into your car and buckled up. . . . and then pray that they don't scratch each other (or you) to death while you drive (and are trying to get them in the car). . . . or launch things at the back of your head. One day the mini-van companies will create a wonderful van for parents! It will include one of those windows that you see in limos that goes between the driver and the back passengers! It would effectively drown out the incessant whining, crying, and screaming, as well as protect the parents from foreign objects pummeling their heads or seats. :) I mainly want it for the noise. :) . . . Ahh . . . . . one day . . . . Am I asking too much? Who here wouldn't buy one?! :)


Lori :)

Thinking of Having Kids?

Do this 15 step program first!

Lesson 1
1. Go to the grocery store.
2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
3. Go home.
4. Pick up the paper.
5. Read it for the last time.

Lesson 2
Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their...
1. Methods of discipline.
2. Lack of patience.
3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.
4. Allowing their children to run wild.
5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior.
Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3
A really good way to discover how the nights might feel...
1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)
2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.
3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.
4. Set the alarm for 3AM.
5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.
6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.
7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.
8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.
9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)
Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4
Can you stand the mess children make? To find out...
1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.
2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.
3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.
4. Then rub them on the clean walls.
5. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.
6. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

Lesson 5
Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.
1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.
2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.
Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6
1. Take an egg carton. Using a pair of scissors and a jar of paint, turn it into an alligator.
2. Now take the tube from a roll of toilet paper. Using only Scotch tape and a piece of aluminum foil, turn it into an attractive Christmas candle .
3. Last, take a milk carton, a ping-pong ball, and an empty packet of Cocoa Puffs. Make an exact replica of the Eiffel Tower .

Lesson 7
Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that.
1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there.
2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.
3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.
4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 8
1. Get ready to go out.
2. Sit on the floor of your bathroom reading picture books for half an hour.
3. Go out the front door.
4. Come in again. Go out.
5. Come back in.
6. Go out again.
7. Walk down the front path.
8. Walk back up it.
9. Walk down it again.
10. Walk very slowly down the sidewalk for five minutes.
11. Stop, inspect minutely, and ask at least 6 questions about every cigarette butt, piece of used chewing gum, dirty tissue, and dead insect along the way.
12. Retrace your steps.
13. Scream that you have had as much as you can stand until the neighbors come out and stare at you.
14. Give up and go back into the house. You are now just about ready to try taking a small child for a walk.

Lesson 9
Repeat everything you have learned at least (if not more than) five times.

Lesson 10
Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child. (A full-grown goat is an excellent choice). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 11
1. Hollow out a melon.
2. Make a small hole in the side.
3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.
4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.
5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.
6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.
You are now ready to feed a nine- month-old baby.

Lesson 12
Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street , Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you're thinking What's 'Noggin'?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 13
Move to the tropics. Find or make a compost pile. Dig down about halfway and stick your nose in it. Do this 3-5 times a day for at least two years.

Lesson 14
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each 'mommy'; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years.
You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 15
Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the 'mommy' tape made from Lesson 14 above. You are no ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

This is all very tongue in cheek; anyone who is parent will say 'it's all worth it!' Share it with your friends, both those who do and don't have kids. I guarantee they'll get a chuckle out of it. Remember, a sense of humor is one of the most important things you'll need when you become a parent!

Friday, March 7, 2008

You are valued as a SAHM!

For other SAHM's (Stay at home mom's) like me - here's the latest from Dr. James Dobson and Focus on the Familiy. It's a wonderful, funny and encouraging podcast with Jill Savage helping to "raise motherhood to a higher level in everyone's mind." It will encourage you if you have been struggling with this "job". :) Listen to both parts!

The Value of Full-Time Moms 1
The Value of Full-Time Moms 2


Lori :)

Thursday, March 6, 2008


Gotta love a Giveaway! I know I do! I've been entering sweepstakes and giveaways off and on since I was 9 and won my first prize - a bright yellow - Mello Yello T-shirt (is that how you spell it?). I was hooked! Since then I have only won a couple other T-shirts and hat and $35 worth of nasty lip gloss! :) I did enter my hubby's name in a contest too and HE won (and he didn't even know I had entered him!). He told me "Yes baby . . . you married a man who is 1 in a million here!" :) hee,hee. But that's another story I'll have to tell you later . . .of God's wonderful blessings and the way He loves to surprise us! God is good!

So here are a couple giveaways I thought I would let you know about. PLUS there's just some good advice, wisdom, and insight into being a Christian mom and woman - aka. Princess to our great King - on these sites! Read away!

Visit Mugs of Truth


Dust if you Must!

I love spring! This morning a bird was chirping outside my window (though I do have to say that I didn't enjoy it waking me up so early!), the sun is shining, the daffodils are blooming, and we enjoyed a gorgeous day in the 70's yesterday! Today's a bit colder, but I know the warm weather is coming to stay soon! I can't wait to get out and enjoy it all!

One day, years ago, I was outside digging in the dirt, planting flowers to beautify the landscape of our newly purchased house. As a multi-tasker, I was also watching my little ones run around outside and talking to my best friend on the phone. She asked me what I was doing.

"Planting flowers."
"HOW do you have time to be outside gardening?!?" she asked, sounding surprised.
"Why? What are you doing?" I asked back.
"Cleaning my house! I'm always cleaning my house! I would never have time to do any gardening. You are amazing! How do you have time?"
Ha! I was giggling at that thought of what she would think of my house at that moment . . . ."Oh . . . my house isn't clean at all. It's a wreck!" I replied.
"And yet you are outside gardening?" It sounded as if she couldn't believe someone could do anything else before cleaning up the house. :)
"Yep! I would rather spend my time doing something that will create beauty tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day, than to spend my day cleaning up something that I will just have to clean up again tomorrow, and the next day, etc!"

To me - cleaning your house while you still have kids running around in it all day long, is like trying to shovel snow while it is still snowing! It's useless. You will spend ALL day at that task . . . and at the end of the day you will be frustrated because there has been no progress. Why NOT spend the day gardening, or scrapbooking, or making lasting memories with your kids? You can clean when they are gone! :) OK, ok . . . I know we do have to clean some before then . . . but what I'm saying is that it's all about priorities - something I know I have struggled with (and still do) for many, many years. I started scrapbooking 12 years ago . . .and I probably have 12 pages done. :) Why? Because I was waiting till I was done with my chores to be able to play! It's not working.

In MOPS one year we had a speaker talk about friendship. I will never forget what she would say to her friends . . . "If you want to come over to see ME . . . stop by any time! If you are coming over to see my house . . . make an appointment!" :) AMEN sister! My house is never fully clean! There are piles of papers to go through, toys under the tables and couches, dust on most (ok . . . ALL) surfaces, and probably a few cheerios and fruit snacks crushed into the carpet from time to time. And to tell you the truth . . . I don't mind going to my friend's houses that are the same! It's refreshing! I feel so intimidated at people's houses that are spotless and always put together like a showcase house. :) I will never attain that without either spending all my days "shoveling snow" or hiring a live-in housekeeper (oh to be like Carol Brady of the Brady Bunch!)! And since we can't afford number two, and I don't want to do number one . . . . you'll just have to come over to see ME (and not my house)! :) And we can have some FUN together!

My mother in law sent me a wonderful email shortly after that conversation with my friend years ago, and I have had it posted on a slip of paper attached to my computer ever since . . . to remind me of just what is important in life.

I don't know who wrote it, but - Enjoy!

Dust if you Must

Dust if you must but wouldn't it be better
To paint a picture or write a letter,
Bake a cake or plant a seed,
Ponder the difference between want and need.

Dust if you must but there's not much time,
With rivers to swim and mountains to climb!
Music to hear and books to read,
Friends to cherish and life to lead.

Dust if you must but the world's out there
With the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair,
A flutter of snow, a shower of rain.
This day will not come around again.

Dust if you must but bear in mind,
Old age will come and it's not kind.
And when you go and go you must,
You, yourself, will make more dust.

Remember, a house becomes a home when you can write "I love you" on the furniture!