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.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Ready. Steady. Quick Recap

Ok. First we

Ran into Effie Trinket and the angry chick from district 7. Late night showing of Hunger Games: Mockingjay part 1. 

Then we

Witnessed downtown become just a smidge brighter with the lighting of the tree. Followed by

Laughing. Pizza. And a lot of laughing. When I say a lot of laughing, I don't mean someone told a joke and we laughed longer than the average person for that minute. I mean in our house we laugh SO MUCH. When we aren't laughing we are singing. And sometimes we are yelling. But only sometimes is that yelling angry. And to be fair sometimes the laughing is facetious and full of mocking undertones. And I'm sorry. I'm just sorry. 
And then it got real. Folks, I'm going to level with you. I was a little shocked to look over and see The Man had taken on this position a little early even for Thanksgiving. This man doesn't sprawl. I should know. I've secretly and obviously watched his every move for 21 years. Ok. More obviously. I don't even try to hide it!! In fact, yep. I'm about to confess something. When we were in high school, I heard he worked at Walmart. I went every night for a week. Never saw him once. I was so irritated that I sucked at stalking a guy who barely knew I existed that I very uncooly asked when he was working and where I could find him if I happened to stop by. Insert air quotes where you think best. You should probably use more sets than you think for that sentence. Also. Who even thought to check the garden section??!!

Seven times a charm, I tell you. anyway. One thing lead to another and 

We are winding down another year of being Mike and Shontell. Sometimes I lay in bed and wonder how he found me and what ever made him think that he should break up with my best friend and ask me out. Out of my hands people!!! Would you believe me if I claimed innocent bystander? 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

A Drop In the Ocean

I've accepted that my arms are the lengths they are. I mean, I am 38. They aren't going to grow. I accept it. I know my limits. I also know that even though my arms measure a smooth five feet seven inches in wing span, my reach still has potential. Today, I decided to stretch my skinny hands right out in front of me and into my closet.

I am joining women across the world to raise awareness for girls held captive in the lie and bondage of sex trafficking. The statistics would cause your heart to bleed.

Awaken can fill you in on those and what is happening here locally to put an end to this darkness.

Dressember can help you be a drop in the ocean. Sound too small? So is a mustard seed. So is a chicken pock. So are two tiny little lice bugs who love each other very much. Do you get my point?

Dressember is a drop in the ocean that raised $165K last year. I am putting my dress on one leg at a time just like all the other girls on this team. You can help by sponsoring me. Make a flat donation or pledge a dollar or more for each day I wear a dress in December.

For some girls, this is easy. For me? Not so much. I lost my heart in a pair of 501s when I was in middle school. I have committed to love them forever, and it is going to break their hearts when I ground them to their hangers. Dear button flies. I can't quit you. Except for the month of December.

All of the money collected will go to these guys. 

Won't you help me send a message?

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Oh Rebekah

I love reading through history. Women and men that changed the world and made mistakes and learned and were still so integral to writing a great and crazy, all wrong and all right, history. I appreciate their accomplishments; I welcome the challenge to match them footstep for footstep.

Maybe I appreciate their screw ups just as much. Or more. I am good to learn from them in this way, too. This is the perfect scenario in which to live vicariously. And the amazing thing is how the worst and craziest seeming people get their stories repeated just as often. We know the infamous as well as the famous. We need to. Past improprieties are the bricks that build us.

This morning, I was reading about Abraham and his guaranteed blessings. Could you imagine that? Guaranteed blessings? Well believe, yo. We have it. When Abraham died, God sent an angel to tell Isaac he would be receiving all that was promised to his father. Whoa. What an inheritance. Brilliant work, God.
Then I moved on to reading about Abraham's daughter in law. When Abraham sent his servant to Canaan to find her, he was beyond confident in God. He prayed, his servant's prayed, and they all believed. This bride-retrieval-mission was bathed in God's will. Like a poorly kept secret, they were all in on it.
His servant arrived after days of traveling and spoke first to God when he arrived at the well. "Let the one who is to be my master's wife offer me water and go on to offer to water my cattle" (Shontell's English Translation). Bam. The first woman who approached, Rebekah, spoke his very words. The bible says even before the servant was finished speaking to God in his heart Rebekah walked up, water jar in hand.
Her words were God's words. Her heart full of the Holy Spirit before she ever met him or he ever really came here to live with us. She was smack dab in the middle of God's will for her. I know that feeling. It's overwhelming, like the ceiling can't hold you.
Nor your skin.
Your heart feels like a cartoon that keeps pumping through your fancy shirt. You're sure everyone around you can feel it. It almost hurts because you know you don't deserve it. You remember the bricks that build you.

Despite that, you sense that God is bigger in you than all of that. I am so grateful for that. That feeling that I will never again be that ignoramus out of God's will. Away from God's path. That assurance that I am complete in God's will and untouchable. And, yet.

I find myself falling for that little selfish whisper. Which turns into a murmur. And then we are having a heated dispute before I cave and believe him because that little evil genius is just a little bit louder than God. Suddenly, I am Rebekah.

Rebekah who went from so engrossed in God's will that her words were mirrors. Ventriloquy. Not a magic trick at all, but full blown Jesus Freak. But time passes and smoke clouds the glass, and she. me. I am at it again. Far from the will I know. Believing the nonsense that threatens to consume me.

Maybe I have never loved one of my twins more than the other. Maybe I have never taught my boy to lie to his brother and then his father in order for him to get ahead and cheat my husband out of his blessing and inheritance. But do the specifics matter? My sin creates space. A deep void only fillable by the one true lover of my soul. The guy that never quits or gets tired of holding me up. Even when my faith is tiny and I feel I need to take things into my own hands which inevitably fail. Grasping is always a mistake. White knuckling this world leads to death.

As always, it comes down to my choices. How do I want to be remembered? Would it bother me if someone, anyone, walked in the room and overheard me talking, working, watching, listening, debating, disagreeing, convincing. Who am I gonna be? More Rebekah or less of her?

In this minute, I will admit I am closer to the version I don't want to be. But I am letting the death consume me to make more room for the one who really matters.

Monday, November 03, 2014

Numbers. The Fall Version

7- the number of Fridays left until Christmas. (Sorry. That one was shocking. I should have started with something calmer). 

1500- ALMOST the square footage of my new house. 

7- the number of people living in that little space. 

55+- the number of times I look out my window and smile because I live in this house with this view. 

8- the tree count in our backyard

5- the number of times I have watched You've Got Mail in the past month. 

28- the number of 5th graders I teach everyday. 

5- the number of afternoons I leave with a huge grin from my job. My heart is full even on the toughest days. 

38- the number of birthdays I have celebrated in my lifetime. 

20- the number of red and white roses my husband secretly delivered to my home while we both were at work. 

Too many- the number of times I underestimate that man. 

60- the number of boxes we have unpacked in the last week. 

3- the number of furniture pieces we still have to sell because they don't fit in our new house. 

One Bajillion- the number of candies we collected last Friday. 

6- the number of costumes I created or coordinated to lend to one of the best Halloweens to date. 

1- the number of times I have seen The Box Trolls. 

2- the number of times I want to see the Box Trolls again before we buy it on DVD and make it one of our annual October movies. 

11- the number of boxes we have left to unpack. 

11- the number of times I've thought to myself "do I really need whatever is in this box? Can't I just chuck it?"

Look around you people. The best two months of the world are about to happen. Come enjoy them at my house. My coffee and my couch are always ready. Especially if you live far away and want to have a jumbo party sleepover. 
Yah. You heard me. Jumbo party.