Monday, August 29, 2011

Blogging Smoke...Marijuana that is.

So apparently the learning and stretching is never finished. Anytime I think God has taught me the skills I need it seems He likes to shake things up to show me how much more I need to learn and just how dependent I am on him.
Right now God has me homeschooling 4 children. 1 is a 3 year old, 1 is a "picture thinker", 1 is way smarter than me, and 1 is a...TEENAGER!
This sweet teenager is not my daughter, but she is a wonderful girl full of potential and talent. There is only one problem. I don't know if SHE believes that. Otherwise why oh why would she so desperately want things that are only going to hinder her, hurt her, and scar her. Why do some teenagers (and even adults) do what is mentioned in the Bible as a "dog returning to it's own vomit". Like a Hobbit wanting it's second breakfasts, but the meal is so unappetizing...try telling that to a dog. The thing is most the things dog eat aren't that appetizing to begin with so vomit seems like a viable snack. After all will their owners feed them again if they don't eat it or will they have to suffer with an empty stomach?
Could this be one of the things that makes sin so enticing to us? Maybe at times we really think that it's the best we can get and that with out it we will be kept wanting. God help us have faith in your promises and especially in the promise of heaven so that would not greedily lap up vomit instead of waiting for the wedding feast. It makes me sad to think how often young girls (and boys) give them self away and put themselves in dangerous situations because those things represent love, maturity, and control to them. I used to be that girl. I will regret it forever.
My prayer is that God will help me teach this teen about His love and promises. That her standards would get higher and higher and that she would have a fulfilling life without regret. Any ideas on how to do this?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Blog Business

Just wanted to make a little post to celebrate to day. It has officially been one month since I opened my etsy store. I have sold 17 items! I am also working with a couple brides on custom guest books. It has been a lot of fun and a lot of work. Here are some of my new listings.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Blog Business- New Journals

I have added new products to my etsy store! Some of my faves are below. It has been so much fun opening this store. I have sold 10 items this month. 2 of them were to people who live indifferent countries which is so fun. Even though it takes A LOT of time it a blessing to be supplementing our income while at home, while doing something I love! Keep in mind that I really enjoy doing custom orders. I have done 2 so far!

Check out my store to see more items and each item in more detail. :)


Monday, August 15, 2011


Homeschooling started last week. Every night I was completely exhausted. I am teaching a Freshman in high school, a gifted 10 year old, a 7 year old with dyslexia, and a 3 year old. The first week was pretty overwhelming!

Here are some of the games I am playing with my 3 year old and 7 year old. Planting seeds in the toddler, while reviewing and strengthening the mental pictures for my 7 year old picture thinker!

Bendaroo letters:

Everyday we are using Bendaroos and the boys are layering them on top of letters I have written. We do the letters that my older son is having troubles with visually and the new letter sounds my 3 year old is learning.

Today were the sounds MMMMM and SSSSS, along with recognizing the difference between b and d, and reviewing n and y.

This has been working great because it helps my preschooler with dexterity and the lets my picture thinker use his hands. They can run their fingers over the finished letters which also helps stimulate the brain to remember. Then they get some free time to build whatever they want with their bendaroos. :)

The next game we play is Sight Word Search:

I write sight words on index cards with crayons. Again I use the crayon because it has a texture that my dyslexic son can trace with his finger to help with the memory of it. They say the words out loud, trace it. My 7 year old also enjoys closing his eyes and trying to write it in the air.

I have 2 of each index card and then I hide all the words around the room. The kids go in search of their cards. When they find one they have to shout out the word. They love this and often want to play it several times. It really is helping both of them with their sight words!

So much BLOGGER than me!! PART 4

Okay as for what I learned thru a dark time of rejection and false accusations...

Number 1 was TO LISTEN. (To God, my husband, and those trusted friends God has placed in my life.)

2. Psalm 19:14

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

I was being (somewhat) careful with the things I was saying, but the things I were thinking were not healthy! I was dwelling on hurts, closed doors, rejections, fears and being consumed by them. I did see that somehow my thoughts and emotions were not adding up with my reality, but until I reread that verse I could not figure out why. Instead of focusing on who God says He is and all the many blessings in my life I just kept focusing on the few things that were going wrong.

3. Perfection doesn't change anything.
After the church closed I decided deep down inside that I would just be perfect so that nobody would ever dislike me again. You can imagine how well that went! Not only am I completely perfect at being imperfect, but no matter what you do you cannot please everyone all the time. Some people will dislike for serving too much, some people will dislike you for not serving where they think you should serve. Some people will even dislike you because your hair is the wrong color or you are the wrong race. I cannot control if people "like" me. Also it becomes a dangerous trap because you cannot please people and please God at the same time. I have to focus on obedience and let the chips fall!

4. Finally the verse that broke me out of my pity party and gave me a ton of perspective...

"Blessed is the man who does not fall away on account of me."
Matthew 11:6

My Pastor spoke an amazing message on this and Matthew 11:6 just JUMPED out at me. Jesus spoke these words in an answer to John the Baptist who was in prison and going to be beheaded. John the Baptist asked if Jesus truly was the Messiah. Maybe he had his doubts because his situation looked so bad.
I realized that I was allowing my circumstances to cause me to stumble. Somehow I had bought into the lie that every problem in my life could be fixed if I was "good enough" for God to bless me. When all these trials came on the heels of a season when I had worked really hard to bless God and others I was confused and really started to buy into the condemnation that I would never be "good" enough and that maybe God had forgotten me or just wasn't all that fond of me.
This verse is a good reminder that when we face trials to rejoice. We are in good company. God's chosen in the Bible went through testings of thier faith time and time again.

So I coming through on the other side. Trusting my Jesus, asking him to help me trust people after some of the things that have happened. I am excited to see all I have learned when I truly get to the other side of this season. :)

So much BLOGGER than me!! PART 3

Okay...sorry my ADD has gotten the best of me! Here is Part 3 as promised.

So as I said it has been a rough Summer. I really felt misunderstood, I felt rejected. I also have been dealing with a diagnosis of dyslexia in my 7 year old son. It is actually a huge relief for both of us to know what is happening because now we can tailor all lessons to his needs. But, it did take a few weeks for me to just digest it all and prep myself to teach him.

A few things have been made very clear to me as I have gone through all of this.

1. I need to just listen.

God has been speaking very clearly to me as everything started to unwind. First he used my husband who continually kept saying that God was calling me to slow down. I just reasoned that God was calling him to slow down and he needed to butt out. (Oops, did I just say that???) In reality he had a perspective that I didn't. He had been praying for me and felt something and I didn't listen.

I also have refused to really listen to what God has been saying to me. When I didn't slow down the doors started closing and instead of trusting I took it personally. Yet God knows what is going to happen. He said "No" to a few things, like a missions trip I had been wanting to go on because He knew that I was going to be asked to go back to NY twice this Summer. The NY trips were such a bright spot during this time because GOd used me in my giftings, used me to encourage some great friends, and used my great friends to ENCOURAGE me. These trips were refreshing, convicting and just what I needed.

He also knew that I was going to find about the dyslexia and homeschool a teenager and that it would be a lot more draining and I wouldn't be able to keep the same pace...I took it as rejection, but really it was PROTECTION!

Number 2 and 3 tomorrow!

Monday, August 8, 2011

So much BLOGGER than me!! PART 2

Okay, so where was I? Ah yes, going on and on about how much this Summer well...sucked. What? It did! ;) But, I have been a Christian long enough to know that it is often the really difficult seasons of life that end up being the most cherished. Take childbirth for example. ( I know that's kind of cliche...) Definitely not something I would willingly revisit for anything OTHER than an adorable baby.
I remember vividly one afternoon in June. It was a day that came with great expectation. I wanted that baby out. In fact I had wanted that baby out for the last 2 months of my pregnancy. I had dragged my husband all over Brooklyn every night because I had heard somewhere that walking could induce pregnancy. So we walked, and we walked, and we walked. Usually about 80 blocks every night. Walking 80 blocks in Brooklyn can get very interesting. One night I even made my husband go bowling at 11PM because I had heard that bowling worked for some other woman. Yes, it's safe to say that I had completely and totally lost my mind. An OF COURSE, the baby came 2 weeks LATE.
Okay, talk about a rabbit the day finally came. The Dr. decided to induce me an after 10 hours the time was finally drawing near. Yet, it wasn't quite what I expected. I knew it was gonna hurt, but I was prepare for the downright horrible, awkward feeling of well, (in an attempt not to get too graphic) THAT! At one point I begged the Doctor to let me take a break and go in the bathroom.
My husband followed me in and I looked at him pitifully and said "Honey, I can't do this."
He looked back at me with a look I had never seen on his face before and replied, "I KNOW! You can't!" (Poor fellow was pretty traumatized at that point.)
Anyway, all that to say childbirth is really difficult. Even my husband thought so and he didn't have to feel what I felt. Yet, my greatest treasures all came from that experience. Other things in my life that have been really hard (moving to NY at 19 alone, church planting, homeschooling, being a woman) always end up being the things that shape me into the person I truly want to be. It is very uncomfortable, but I wouldn't trade the pain now that I know what it PRODUCED.

Okay so this post totally went another direction so stay tuned for Part 3, where I will hopefully be able to stay on point and wrap it up! :)