Friday, January 28, 2011

Labile. . .

Labile. . . means open to change, adaptable.  Of course there is another meaning "unstable."  That's the one I liken to lately.

Silly days
 I'm writing about perfection.  No, I'm definitely NOT writing about perfection because I have obtained it, but I'm writing (briefly--because I have to get to bed) about how we THINK we need to be perfect :)

I was pondering a comment from a friend recently about how "wow" you have it "together."  Hmmmm. . . let's see, the definition of together--having everything in one place.  Well--that's definitely NOT true!

Serious days
Anyway--I've been thinking about reality TV.  Reality TV is quite ubiquitous (I've been wanting to use that word lately).  Everytime you turn on the television, which I don't do very often, it's frequently some "live" "reality" show about someone's kids (multiples of them), pawn shops, picking (Brett would love to be a picker by the way), etc.  And then there's the dating reality shows and those "drama" reality shows where everyone fights (I don't know the names of those :)  Years ago I read an article where a participant sued the televsion program (and lost) because they mis-depicted her on the reality show (she should have read the FINE print).  They cut only scenes where she was angry or complained and depicted her as a negative individual. (There's a whole other message in that.)

Well--I relate this to blogging as well.  Blogging is sort of a "reality" show, in a sense.  We read other's blogs and follow their little world, and yet, in "reality" it's only a glimpse into other's lives.  We read how great of a mother they are, how crafty, artsy, wise, romantic, etc. etc.  There is nothing wrong with that, but just don't forget that those are only glimpses into the lives of. . . well. . . humans.

Frustrating days

I am farrrrrrrr from perfect.  Sometimes (well a lot of times) I am silly.  I like to laugh.  I cry. . . A LOT. I even "raise my voice" (as Brett tells me :) I am silly.  I cry (did I say that already).  I get angry.  Sometimes I even want to throw things. Of course, who displays those moments to the public?

Fun days

So often we want to hide our weakness, and I think when we do, we are a disservice to our friends and those around us.  I have weaknesses.  I seek God for strength to overcome them, and I'm sure my husband does too!  I felt all alone this week in relation to school.  I felt like I was the "only one" who was feeling frustrated, anxious, nervous, and totally a wreck.  Everyone else looks like they have it all "together."

Angry days

I don't. (Hence the frustration, anxiety, nervous, basketcase I've been this week).  But I'm sure not EVERYONE does either.  So . . . point. . . . be real.  I just want to be real. And in the midst of my weakness, I know He is strong!

"My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness."
2 Corinthians 12:9

Monday, January 24, 2011

Make a Difference Monday

Happy Monday!!

I could tell you about all of the wonderful opportunities I made this week to make a difference in the lives of others, and pat myself right on the shoulder.  But instead I will tell you--I am tired.  Exhausted to be exact.  School started last week--and I am whipped already--without clinicals beginning yet.  I took a 3 hour nap today--and still felt exhausted all afternoon.

I think that is a perfect example of when we most need to be thinking about others--when we have too much focus on ourselves.  It's not always easy.

This week in the cafeteria, I was standing in line, checking my Facebook on my phone, and thankfully, I looked up long enough to see the situation in front of me.

This gentlemen (with an armband--yet he didn't look like a patient--so I presume he was the parent of a pediatric patient) had a plate of lunch, yet didn't have enough money for his meal.  He was leaving his food and was going to his car to get his credit card.  Thankfully, I was simply able to say "I'll take care of that for him"  It was a simple gesture, yet one in which he was so grateful.

The point is not that I bought some stranger lunch.  The point is that so often, I don't think I'm very aware of what's going on around me.  I observe regularly in public, especially at work, everyone sitting around in the lounge on their phones.  We sit, stand, wait in line amongst others, yet all in a world of our own--interacting in a wireless world, yet not interacting in the physical one surrounding us.

There is a "rule" at the hospital, that employees are not to be on their phones while "on stage" in public places, in the halls,etc. so we can greet, be available, make eye contact with our "customers" and visitors.  I try to abide by this 99% of the time. Some employees may scoff at the idea, but I think it's a great concept.  I need to be more aware of those around me.  I am guilty of holding that phone conversation while checking out at the grocery store.  I really dislike that.  I check out, slide my card, and never really have to make eye contact or conversation with the store clerk. 
"Love your neighbor as yourself"
How impersonal are we becoming?  God is a personal God.  So personal, that He sent His Son to the earth as a personal contact with man.  I just desire to add more of that to my life. . . even when I'm exhausted :)

(Don't get me wrong.  I do thoroughly enjoy technology.  I have finally gotten used to texting--although I revolted for a long time. And I am sitting on my new lap top--using wireless internet :)  I'm thrilled )

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Make a Difference Monday

Even though it's officially Tuesday (After midnight on Monday)--I'm still writing this post. :)

Today, I thought often about Martin Luther King and the difference he made in a world that had such a false filter over its eyes.  Just to think. . . it was only 55 years ago that in America, black people had to go to different restaurants, ride different buses, had substandard/different schools, and could be beaten or killed with no consequences for the offender.  Wow, have we come a long way.  The world is not perfect, by any means, but you have to think that because someone stood up for something he believed was true and right. . . a difference was made.

Makes me think. . . have I stood up for ideas, people, situations that I believed to be true and right--even thought it could cost me my reputation or even my life?  Pretty heavy thoughts.  I think if you have nothing more to lose -- you get desperate. But what about in the daily choices.  . . do I stand up for what is right and True?  No always.  Sometimes I just remain silent.  Unfortunately.

Making a difference often requires standing up, speaking out on behalf of others. . . on behalf of God, sometimes too (not that He needs us to stand up for Him :)

So. . . before I keep quiet when my heart prompts me to stand up---I'm hoping I have the courage. . . to STAND! (Of course, sometimes there is wisdom in silence, too :)

**I had a cool opportunity this week-- to pay for someone's lunch in the cafeteria.  I'm thankful I had an opportunity to make a difference. . . even so small to a stranger.  What about you?  Did you find any opportunities to make a difference in the life of someone else this week?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

16 pounds of ground beef. . .

. . .makes 10 quarts of taco soup. . . . 6 quarts of chili. . . and 6 quarts of spaghetti!!

This was just part of it!!
 I'm stocking up the freezer because school starts next week, and I'm sure Brett will appreciate a hot meal when time is short :)  I was planning on cooking a very large gumbo and beef vegetable soup, but I ran out of room in the freezer :(

Butternut squash soup and salad made from local lettuce from Red Stick Farmer's Market--that stuff is awesome!  Melts in your mouth.
While cleaning out the freezer, I found loads of butternut squash pureed baby food (remember THIS POST)?  Well, we are past the "baby food" stage--so I've heard of butternut squash soup, so I hopped on the internet and looked up a recipe.  I pulled together random things in the refrigerator that I found in different recipes and came up with soup!!  Brett didn't eat it, but it was pretty good.  Not so good that I could eat it over and over, but the little I made was pretty good. . .for a little change. (Of course the smoked cheddar I added made it extra special.)

And of course--I had to add a few photos of Lydia :)  She wanted to play in the leaves on one of those nice days before the cold hit us.  She cried to come in.  She had a great time crawling and exploring.  I just love that girl!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Handstamped Jewelry and Soap

Well--I wrote this post Under Construction back in May.  Well. . .I've finally got it together and officially opened my Etsy store--with a little nudge from a friend (well, more than a nudge--it was like a shove, over a cliff!!)  But I am thankful that I have friends and a husband who are willing to push me beyond my comfort zone--to use the gifts God has given me.

So. . . now I'm selling handstamped jewelry and soap.  I've been selling soap for a few years now, and I am reluctant to list it online just because the shipping is so exhorbitant (that stuff weighs a lot), but we shall see.  If you need/ want any soap and are local--we can arrange for a pick up.  Or if you're out of town--we can still get some for you!

I will try to juggle all of this and school.  It is a fun "relief" activity for me--but also-- we could use some extra money that can be made at home.  So here we are. . .

Contact me with any questions :)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Make a Difference Monday

Last Monday, I was sitting at Sonic early in the morning buying some time before I had to be somewhere.  While I was there, I was reading Facebook on my phone and eating.  In front of me I could see a man who I actually know from working in the ER, who is homeless.  He wasn't begging, he wasn't even making eye contact with anyone, he was just pacing back in front of a few cars, including mine.  Sadly, I ignored him.

While reading a facebook post from a former student who said she watched Pay it Forward (a great little movie) and decided to make a new year's resolution to do something for others instead of focusing on bettering herself.  She wanted to write a blog of 100 random acts of doing things for others throughout the year.  "How awesome is that!" I thought (as I continued to ignore the homeless man--with the blanket wrapped around him--in 30 degree weather).  Sometimes we can be so blinded by. . . ourselves.

When I looked up again, someone (I didn't see) gave this gentleman food.  I had tears in my eyes as I watched him forage through the package hurriedly.  I was ashamed.  I sat with my warmed car, warm food, on my luxury phone, while a man (who I know is not a drug user or alcoholic) needed food and I ignored him.  Worse--I was getting excited about someone's project of doing good for others--all at the same time.

He ran off after that, and I felt horrible.

I worked that night, and while leaving the hospital around 11:30 pm. I was walking through an empty waiting room. . . and there he was.  This gentleman.  I was so excited.  God had given me a second chance.  He was hanging out in a warm place.  I called him by name, said hello, and was able to provide him with some money to eat that night.

I was so thankful.  It's really not about us.  If we lived like we were dead--and didn't think about ourselves first, I believe there would be so much less discord, anger, and broken relationships.

So, on Mondays (taking from Klove's "Make a Difference Monday")--I'm going to write about making a difference--and opportunities that I had -- and MADE--during the week--to put others--first!

Hope you join me.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Hooded Animal Towels

and other handmade gifts!
As long as I can remember--I've loved making things.  When I was 7 my father taught me to needle point.  Almost every gift that I received as a child that I remember loving, had something to do with a craft.  To this day, when I see something I like, I think "hmm. . . I can make that."  Now I don't know if it's good or not--because I end up with A LOT of "hobbies" that way.  And actually, I should have just bought it--because by the time I spent all the money on my new "I can make that" I've spent way more than I planned.  But hey--it's always (well almost) -- fun!

I made these animal towels for Lydia.  How FUN are they!!  I've come to realize about myself that I really don't like doing many things more than once.  Once I learn it, like it, overcome the "challenge" of it, I'm done.  There are a few things that I've continued (like soapmaking) that I do enjoy--also because I LOVE the soap.  So with the towels, I don't want to remake the same one.  So, I'm actually working on a pattern for each of them.  That's a new challenge ;)

 This chest was a gift to me from Brett to go into my sewing/crafting area.  This was an old antique cabinet that had broken doors.  He repaired it, added a little "Brett" design to it, and refinished the top.  It came out so great--and now I have some more storage!  Thank you, Baby!

And of course, it's always fun to make surprises for others. . .
I ordered supplies to make handstamped jewelry (because. . .well you read the above post hehe) And it has been so much fun.  For those who see familiar names in the above picture.... SURPRISE :)  Give me a call!

And if anyone wants any jewelry made.... contact me :)

Well--that's it for some of my handmade Christmas!  Did you make any handmade gifts?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

What's a resolution?

Happy New Year!!  Over the last few days, I've been thinking. . . about New Year's resolutions.  Why do we make them? When did this tradition start? and most importantly:  Why do people wait until January 1st to make changes in their lives?

I must, as usual, start with a definition:
Resolution:  1.  a formal expression of opinion or intention made 2.  a resolve or determination

Ok.  That's pretty straight forward-- resolve, determine, express formally (with lists and plans) the intentions of doing something--and be determined about it.

When I looked up the history, it was a lot of stuff I'm not typically interested in (who/what leader changed the day of the new year--it went from December 25 to March 25 to January 1st, etc. etc. )  Ultimately, there was a mythical king, Janus, in 153 BC that the Romans believed could forgive sins.  So, as a result, the Romans would make "resolutions" at the beginning of the year hoping that Janus would see and bless their entire year (because Janus had two faces and could look into the future and the past).  There are other "historical" accounts relating to the Babylonians, but honestly, I'm not that interested hehe :)

BUT . . . I do think it is interesting as to why we wait until January 1st.  I was listening to various individuals over the last weeks and heard the ubiquitous comment of "on January 1st I will. . . (start my diet, etc.)"

I have been realizing that we all just . . . simply. . . want a new start.  That exercise plan, those school grades, that marriage relationship, our relationship with God. . . we feel like we fail. . .and want to start over.  But, the awesome thing I realized is that with God . . .I don't have to wait until January 1st to start over or to look forward, hoping that I would be blessed this year--because I am blessed every day!

I don't think New Year's resolutions are horrible, by any means, it just got me thinking--that as we search for a new start. . . to not forget that we can have one every day!

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. . .they are NEW every morning. . . great is Thy faithfulness!  Lamentations 3:22-23 

Oh, and MY "resolution" is continued from Christmas. . . to continue to walk. . . by choice. . . in JOY!!

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About Me

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Hey--It's me. I'm a simple, crafty, adventure loving wife and mom who loves to learn about almost anything. I enjoy the blogging community and love learning and growing from reading other's experiences. I became an RN (after being a teacher) and then realized I had lost the creative outlet of my classroom. I've always enjoyed arts and being creative, so I began sewing, smocking, soap making, and delving into other new hobbies! :) I live with my wonderful husband who is my best friend and our sweet little girl. Together we have entrusted our lives to Christ and His purposes. So through this blog, I invite you to walk along with me and my family through our daily adventures!