Thursday, June 29, 2006

If Mueller Had a Car . . .

. . . he wouldn't have been like I was the last couple days! George Mueller was a man of God who lived in the early 19th century. He is known for his faith and for the boldness of his prayers. He ran an orphanage that had thousands of children come through, yet he never asked for a penny. How I wish I was more like George Mueller! He assumed that God would bless him in his work for the kingdom. He waited and looked for God's blessing, preparing to receive it.

I have definitely not been like Mueller the last few days. A close friend was hospitalized over the weekend and the doctors do not seem to know what is wrong or how to make him well. Then the brakes on my car started grinding a couple days ago, resulting in a hefty repair bill. I responded to God with tantrums and selfishness. Where is my faith? Four years ago, my husband left and I assumed that I would not be able to continue the level of involvement I felt was necessary to train my boys to become godly men. Yet here I am four years later, my home is secure and God has provided every year for me to stay home and homeschool as He called me to do. Why do I slide back into doubt so easily? Oddly enough, about a year and a half before my husband left, I was introduced to George Mueller. He instantly became one of my heroes, and I prayed that God would give me his kind of faith. I guess I was expecting an easy gift, for if I had known the kinds of trials that would be required to get there, I'd have probably told him I was content with the mustard seed of faith. I guess that God is still working on my request, since I failed the exam so miserably this week. Hopefully, I won't have to repeat the test any time soon. Perhaps between now and the next test, I'll prepare myself better for it.

"Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the LORD Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit," says the LORD Almighty. "Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land," says the LORD Almighty." Mal 3:10-12

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Why We Love Summer!

We love summer because we can do more of the things we enjoy.

Josh has spent the summer rereading his favorite Redwall books. I think he will finish the whole series again before I even finish the one book we've been reading together!

Stephen spends some time reading too, but his favorite thing is to listen to "Adventures in Odyssey" on his new boom box. How do you listen and look at a book at the same time?

This weekend, Stephen and Andrew made airplanes out of cardboard boxes. It has been a very creative weekend for us! Andrew was putting the finishing touches on his tonight--hard to do when you're right handed and have to color with your left!

Check Out the Battle Scars!

Andrew shows off his trophy!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

As If We Weren't Having Enough Fun . . .

. . . last night AJ got sick with a stomach bug. We were in and out of the bathroom from about 11:30 until 1:00am when we gave up, spread a blanket on the floor in front of the toilet and just slept there. We finally made it back into the bed at about 2:30am, and slept peacefully the rest of the night. Or at least Andrew slept peacefully . . . I jumped every time he turned over! He is feeling better this morning and holding water down (Praise the Lord!), which is good since we have to go in a couple of hours to have his cast put on. Maybe tonight I will give him some of that good medicine . . . or maybe I'll just take it myself!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

What Was That I Said About This Week?

Ok, did I say this week was going to be the relaxing easy week of summer? Guess again! God is really stretching me to flex with His plan, especially when it is very different than mine! I have childcare this week. Some of it--the baby--was planned. But now I also have several other chidren I occasionally take care of. I have discovered the delight of my heart is caring for children. God has been very gracious to fill my house with them, even if I can't have the big family I dreamed of having.

In addition to childcare, we have a first in our home. Andrew broke his arm yesterday. I knew that with three very rough and tumble boys, it would only be a matter of time before somebody broke something. This is a very mild break--a chip in an arm bone, but it has upset the balance of my restful week. We will have to go in a few days to see an orthopedic doctor and have the cast put on. Plus I get the fun of helping Andrew bathe, dress, and do all kinds of other activities he usually uses his right hand to do. Once again, this is the life of a mom that I love so much!

AJ is quite thrilled with his injury. It is wrapped in a splint for now, and he has it in a sling. For a six-year-old, it is a badge of honor, and something his brothers haven't had yet, which makes it even more special! My favorite part? The really great drugs the doctor gave me for pain (OK, for Andrew's pain, not mine!). I'm trying to figure out if it's better to use it on one boy for six days, or on three boys for two days! Ya know what I mean? A girl needs a break every now and then! (Just kidding--anyone who knows me knows I'm a stickler about using meds the right way!)

Monday, June 12, 2006

Ahhhh . . . Relaxing Summer! HA!

Funny, I remember summer being something where the pace slowed and I finally had time to work on lots of little projects, as well as sleep late. Not this year. Between my trip to the state homeschool convention, sending one boy to Cub Scout Day Camp, two to Bible camp downstate, and beginning to work on getting my house in order, I'm beat. And of course we have VBS this week.

The biggest change for me has been a marked improvement in my health. For the first time in over a year, I'm feeling like "myself" again. I'm not really sure who I felt like before, but I am certain it wasn't me. I didn't realize it until last week when I finally managed to overcome the mountains of papers in my bedroom, and began once again working out each day. The regular excercise has given me amazing energy, and within a few days I began feeling great! Best of all, I am spending lots of time most days with God. This has given me new perspective in the direction He is taking me. Not that I've actually figured out what direction we're going, but I'm again staying focused on letting Him know even if I don't.

Fortunately next week we finally get to have "summer." The boys and I are going to do nothing but sleep late, work on projects, and maybe watch a few movies. Hmmm . . .I wonder if I'll be ready to get back to school this year with the crazy summer we've had?

Thursday, June 08, 2006

If Mom Gives a Mouse a Cookie

Often I wonder why I can't get anything done around here. There are several reasons. One of them is that I feel like I have ADHD, or something like that. Maybe I do. But I really think I have a mouse living in my house. It's not just any mouse, it's the one from If You Give a Mouse a Cookie . . . .

My day goes something like this:

If you wake a mouse in the morning, he'll want to snuggle longer. As he snuggles, he'll want to tickle. Once you've started tickling, he'll want to wrestle. As he wrestles, he'll kick the bedcovers off. When you finally start making the bed, he'll remember that it's morning and want to eat breakfast. He'll whine about being hungry until you go downstairs to help him find breakfast.

He'll start off wanting cereal, but after getting the milk and cereal out, he'll see the waffles and want them. Then he'll want a banana to go with the waffle. He'll remember the Curious George book you promised to read him the night before, and will remind you of your promise and insist you read it right away. As you read the book, he'll have to play with Legos, but just as you finish and the phone rings, he'll run upstairs to get his Star Wars toys.

Though you know you need to do some picking up, the buzzer on the dryer will sound, and since this is the third time you've tossed the laundry, you'll go right away to get it folded and hung so you can start drying a new load. Seeing the clean laundry, your mouse will remember he's not wearing his favorite shirt, and will complete undress and change clothes right there in the foyer. While he has his shirt off, he'll want to paint, but after painting a few pieces of paper, he'll be bored, so he'll head outside to play.

Just as you start to pick the clothes off the floor, you see the mail that was moved from the place you put it to remind you to put it in the mailbox to some obscure place (that mouse!), so you'll take the mail out to the box. You'll find the mailman has already delivered, so you take the new mail in to look over. As you bring it in, the mouse will see the latest toy ad, and want to look at it. Then he'll want to plan his birthday party, even though it's not for another eleven months. He'll go to get you a piece of paper and a pen, as you start to pull out stuff for lunch. After lunch he'll want you to read him another book. . . .

OK, you see where this is going. So now I have: an unmade bed, half my pajamas still on, milk, cereal and waffles on the counter with the banana peel, several books laying out, half finished Lego creations and lots of miscellaneous blocks, Star Wars toys, dirty clothes, outgoing mail, incoming mail, a toy ad spread out, a piece of paper and a pen, lunch fixings . . . . Aaarrrggghhh! And the day's less than HALF over! And I have THREE mice! Now do you understand why my house is so hard to keep up after? Please?