This Where the Nonsense Turns to Makesense

..A large family working to perfect our sweet skills: Loving others, making an impact, parenting on purpose, living simply, and embracing sarcasm.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Post and orders, remain as directed

 So, tonight I was listening to a guy named Philip De Courcy, a very Irish fellow. He's an excellent speecher, and looks not at all how I pictured him. He talked about where we get our orders. Most of us have more than one order giver in our lives. If you are married, sometimes the directives come from the spouse. If you have a toddler, you know that you find yourself taking orders now and then before you realize that tiny turkey is not the boss of you. And if you are a Christian, even if no one else knows it, you get your order from God. 

My advice is that you listen and obey. However, my example on the matter thought it was Opposite Day. (Why my auto correct changed the capitalization on this made up holiday, I do not know. But I often think it should be a day and I am keeping it). 

Anyhow. My example is to doubt. To second (and 3rd and 4th) guess what I think God said. Especially when I don't see anything working in what I feel is the right direction. You know what else I learned about myself?

I sometimes try to quit people before they quit me. I close up. I build a wall faster than Nehemiah if he had two good arms, and I bunker down inside where it makes me feel better if I quit first. 

I have this idea God gave me. When I was a kid, until I was well into high school, if anyone asked me how many kids I wanted, I would calmly reply, "10." I wasn't kidding. Then I met my only child husband, and plans changed. Sort of. 

As you can see by my seriously awesome pictures, I have five kids. If we are getting personal, I have three babies we don't talk about often. It's not as raw, but it still hurts. We lost three little peanuts. I never asked God why. He was ready for them, and it doesn't change the status of their parents. Those are my three babies. Even if they never lived outside of my belly. So I have eight kids. 

And about three years ago, I felt like God dropped a nugget of desire in my lap that we should consider adopting. There is more to this story, but it's not the time for that. 

I dreamt of a little boy. Since then, my husband teeters on the edge of hysteria and crazy enough to happen depending on his day. Also, he threatens sincerely to steal our friends' adopted blondie little girl. He wants to have her over for dinner. He wants to buy her presents. He cries like he is her daddy when she sings on stage or burps the alphabet. He won't admit it, but I think he secretly wants another girl. 

I say we both get our way and we add two more brewers so we can reach that magical number, 10. 

I declared it. Not like bankruptcy. Like full of faith. Like Joshua giving orders to the sun. Like Jesus yelling for Lazarus. Like my six year old hollering "CAN SOMEONE PLEASE BRING ME TOILET PAPER?!" Loudly. With strength. With conviction. I wrote about it. I prayed. Fasted. Held tight to promises. 

And three years later. Nothing. Except my unfulfilled desires. Oh, and nearly everyone I know gets to adopt. But not me. 

My heart wants to quit before this dream quits me. What if it never happens and then I just look like a fool? 
Philip De Courcy. He talked about the soldiers guarding the tomb of the unknown soldier in Arlington Cemetery. I'd imagine it's even more emotional than the regular cemeteries. I'd like to go there and watch the changing of the guards. Because these guys know their orders. And in the same way God is so faithful to bring reminders and keep his will heavy on our hearts, so do the guards. They are guarding the remains of soldiers from two different wars. These men couldn't have a tombstone like everyone else because we never knew their names. Just their bodies. We brought them home and put them in this tomb which is protected night and day. Always. 

The soldier walks 21 paces. Turns and pauses for 21 seconds. Then he walks back the 21 paces to his starting point. He does this repeatedly until it's time for a changing of the guard. 

When his replacement comes, after the new guy carefully inspects his weapon, he asks "what is the directive?"

The soldier says,"post and orders remain as directed." Every time. 

It's what God is saying to each of us really. Just about different things. Mel Gibson gave his own spin on this phrase in the movie The Patriot. "Stay the course." 

Remain as directed. 
Stay the course. 

Because there may be pain at night, but joy comes in the morning. And God's fulfillment. 

I am grateful for my work while I wait. I am grateful for the ways God is preparing me every day. I am grateful that my work is not as monotonous as the soldiers in Arlington Cemetery, no matter how noble that job is. 
His boundaries for me have fallen in essential places (psalms). 

Remain as directed. 
Stay the course. 


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Listen Here People

I have something to say. Well, probably, but I cannot think of it straight off. So I'll ramble on, which, jayehs, is a great song. Thank you Led Zeppelin. You have helped me through many a night.

Ramble One (or two in case you thought that Zeppelin bit was a tad random): This week I am finishing my first session of professing. Most of you know, but any of you newbies may not have heard I teach English as a professor at the local community college. It's the most favorite of every job I have ever had. I feel it is the most worthwhile career after being  wife and a mom. And. I have to quit. sad. sad. sigh. Tomorrow is my last night. I don't think I can handle my day job, homeschooling, and teaching four nights a week. Not yet.I am still praying that maybe I can fit it into my daytime routine, sooner rather than later. But now I know that God has given me this passion, and I am grateful he opted to let me in on that little secret. Many people miss those whispers. Lucky for me I wear hearing aides. Or, I will soon.

Ramble Two: My hearing is going. I am missing out. People speak, and I am that old lady grunting, "HUH?!" And mumblers? Forget about it. You could be saying something that would save the planet, and I won't be a part of it, because I can't hear you. I believe in healing. Two high school girls prayed over me that my hearing wouldn't even be restored, but that I would receive new hearing. I hope they didn't mean hearing aides.

Ramble Three: I got a text from my friend Liz today. She lives in Florida. I met her when we both lived in California, way back in the day. She is awesome. Weird. Always available when I need to hash it out at 3am Pacific/Standard time. Thanks Liz. This one's for you.

Ramble Four: I don't at all believe in reincarnation, but if I did, I would want to come back as a bald eagle. Those guys are feisty. They fight like ninjas!! I could BE a ninja, that's fo sho.

Ramble Five: I have to figure out how to make a slideshow of about a gazillion pictures of my students. It makes me tired to think of it, but it's on my list of to-dos. That and about a trillion other things. It's tough going from one job to the next. Especially when my new job has two compartments. I am researching and working and changing and planning and meeting and dealing. All while trying to finish up my current job as kindergarten teacher and Adult Basic Ed/ English as a Second Language teacher. Oh, right, plus all my kids have end of the year nonsense, and people need me. Vacation for me means no one needing me. I haven't had that day yet. I am hoping that comes soon. When I picture it happening I am on the porch of my hotel room that overlooks the ocean in Hawaii. Or, I am on a train running through the country sides of Italy or France. In both cases, no one is needing me.

Ramble Six: The Next Food Network Star begins next week. My DVR is all set to record.

Ramble Seven: I still can't find my cards. The outline of my book is on those cards. Years of work. Missing somewhere in my house? At the coffee shop? Being used as a book mark? I don't know. Lord, please help me find my card. I want to be obedient. What should I do? "Dig another well." Ok. sad. sad sighing. I will.

Ramble Eight: I am outtie. See you in a week, Liz. AH just kidding. But let's give it a couple days.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Coming to a Close

So many things are coming to a close in our life right now. Some are direct, but some are happening to people around us.

Friends having final babies (or so she thinks)

Nephews graduating

The school year

My daughter's first year of high school

My first year of full-time work

My first year ever of full-time teaching

My two mid-kids are ending elementary school

Hopefully my little kids' last year of school outside the home until high school.

But with all this comes new. God is faithful like that. He is the God who gives and takes away. And we should count every minute of that joyfully.

He takes sickness. He gives health.
He takes jobs and gives new ones.
He takes houses and gives homes somewhere else because we realize home is where the family is.
He takes kids and makes them grow up and gives us adults we are proud to call son or daughter.
He takes our sin and gives opportunity for growth and life.
He takes us as we are and gives us love we hardly deserve.

He is faithful. For everything he is taking, I anxiously await what he plans to give.

The biggest gift I think I will be given is time. Time with my husband and time with my kids. Such a priceless gift.

So is this leaf bouquet my twelve year old Elijah made me at the park the other day.

Thursday, May 16, 2013


Many things are new in this land. I don't mean your land. I mean our land. "This land" is what Sam calls any happenings that affect him.

New job.

New church because of new job.

New family dynamic.

New shoes. Well I hope so.

New hours.

New relationships.


It's all new. It will take me a bit to pull myself up from my Bootstrap's bootstraps, but with new comes hope. I like hope. It could have been my middle name. I might decide it's my code name and wear a super girl shirt with an H in the center. I could rock it. Lets just agree and move on.

My official title is Children's Ministry and Preschool Director at Hillside Foursquare Church. Because of the nature of the job, we will be switching churches to be in that community.

We started back today. It ruled. They had pastries and coffee during the service and nachos after. Come eat. Come drink. Come nacho.

Our dynamic changes because my kids currently attend the private school I work at. But that discount doesn't extend to no employees, and that's ok. For the past six months I have had the desire to homeschool again. So, we are going to. DID YOU HEAR ME FRIENDS!! I get to homeschool my babies. Who aren't actually babies at all, but they are mine. And being their mom is the best job a girl can have after being The Man's wife. Best. Just the best.
So I registered the four youngest in K12- an online public school. We dominated that program about two years ago like O'Doyle rules the woods. Izzy will stay in her program in the IB school she is at and represent the Brewers from there.
I'll devote three-four hours a day to my kids' education instead of the current nine. Nine hours on school is silly. I am all done with that.
New shoes? I see a Goodwill trip in my future.
New hours. I am required to be on campus for 25 hours each week. What I do with that time is up to me a long as I am getting my work done and our teachers feel valued and are learning still. That's my job. To give them opportunities to grow.
Instead of the schedule I keep now, 44 hours per week, I will cut that nearly in half
Dear Lord, you are so good to me. Thank you for my family and my church and the chance to serve them. Help me not to screw it up. Amen.

Oh. And this picture? This is my daughter hugging redemption. God is amazing. Tell your friends.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

The Rules Should Apply To Everyone

Tonight I taught a class of seriously awesome adults. Every Wednesday and Thursday, for a few hours, I trade in my kindergarten hat, my wife hat, my mamma hat for an adult basic education hat. That's a big hat. I teach English as a second language to a group of people who are anxious to learn. They work harder than most people I know. They are rad.*
I asked them to be confident in themselves and the direction they are heading. And as I spoke the words, I realized these same rules need to apply to me too.
It's so easy to give advice. It's so easy to stand on the outside and know what someone else should do. But we are kidding ourselves when we say we are confident or that we KNOW how we would act in a situation we have never been in.
Sometimes God says move. Even when it doesn't make a ton of sense, God says move, and we have the choice to listen. But we have the choice to stand still and ignore him.
This time I am going to move. Both feet.




*i love the word "rad". One time when my brother and I were in middle school, we were at a family picnic. A cousin or some same aged relative ran up to my brother and said, "you're rad." He smirked like she wasn't telling him something new.
Another obscure relative of the tween age came up and said the same thing. "You're rad" and then giggled hysterically before running off.
My brother turned to me and stared at my face, imparting the wisdom of a knowing man. "These girls see my greatness" his eyes seemed to say.
Finally, a voice of reason showed up in the form of a ten year old. She giggled like the others, but this time she said," do you know what R.A.D. Means?"
Of course we do. And we said so.
Her: no. It stands for retarded African dog.
Me: bwahahahaha. Oh. My side.

Saturday, May 04, 2013

Linking Up With a Gypsy: Brave

Brave: start:

I want to be brave, really. Sometimes I stand at the edge of the diving board (theoretically of course because I scarce know how to swim in the deep end) and let my toes hang over. I stand and practice bending my knees. Arms up. But I just look. That isn't being brave. That's planning to be brave, but planning to be brave isn't brave either.

When God speaks, and you stand, and God speaks, and you take a step with your eyes squeezed shut, and God speaks, and you peak through the squint, and God speaks, and you reach your hands out in an opened position, and God speaks, and you feel the weight lift off, and God speaks, and you open one eye, and God speaks, and you open the other eye, and God speaks, and you step forward with more surety, and God speaks, and you stand tall, and God speaks, and you pick up the pace, and God speaks, and your heart feels poundy, and God speaks, but you do it anyway, and God speaks, and you realize you are running toward His voice not looking left or right or down, only up because everything else is too terrifying. That's brave.

Write for five minutes with no editing or over thinking. Just write on the given topic.
Full disclosure: I didn't know how to spell surety. I looked it up after my five minutes was up. I was way off.


Our book club has begun. Officially. I love the atmosphere at Starbucks. My hazelnut latte wasn't too bad either. The best part though was being there with my teen. She is cool and loves Jesus. People these days don't tend to enjoy kids being involved in church activities that aren't explicitly kid activities. It's too much of a soup pot. No, church these days prefers segregated soup. So, in keeping with my wild thing side, and our mandate to disciple other generations, I invited teens.
She added plenty to the conversation, and even spoke some truth like a champ.

This week, for those of you who are joining us, we are reading the first five chapters. That is about 25 pages. Maybe less. Order your book on amazon now. Do it. Do it!

Our bookstores here have been bought right out. I know because I bought izzy the last one.

In a few days, I will post some interesting questions. I'd love to hear your answers to them. Meanwhile. Be blessed