Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I'm a Book Girl

I went to the public library tonight to study. I was studying my "Fundamentals of Accounting" materials... trying to work on some extra credit problems that I put off until the last minute. I thought it would be a good place to study, but it was actually hard to concentrate with all those books around me wanting to be picked up, skimmed over, caressed and read.I tried to resist, but that proved to be too hard and I found a book I wanted to take home. So I went to the counter to check it out. I haven't been to the library in a long time and was informed I had a $9 fine on my card. This is the part where you need to keep in mind I was at the library for the purpose of studying Accounting. I had only a $20 bill and a couple of Ones, so I handed her the twenty and asked if they had change, to which she replied, "I think so", to which I replied, "Would it help if I gave you a $1, too?" She just stared at me, confused. Okay, so in what possible way would it help to give her $21 to pay a $9 fine??!!!! So then we both started laughing and she said, "Don't confuse me with math, I'm a book girl". And I said, "Me too" So I got back to my table to return to my studying... and stared at my Accounting book and, feeling sort-of sad, sort-of tired, sort-of wistful, I asked myself the obvious question... "Why is a 'book girl' studying Accounting?" Someone please tell me what to do with my life! :-)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Financially Confident

Financially confident woman? Not me. Not in my whole 40 years. But I'm excited about becoming one now, especially since it has become a necessity. :-) This book was recommended by Dr. Hayden several months ago and I have just gotten around to reading it. Written by a christian woman who got herself and her family into deep financial trouble and then dug her way back out again... so far, I am really enjoying it and learning from it. I hope to never be that woman digging myself out of serious financial trouble by learning from her mistakes.

She includes chapters on investing, saving, debt, giving, your credit, etc. with very helpful information about making a budget, etc. But she begins the book with lots of "heart issue" encouragement... changing your attitudes, learning to be content and grateful, etc.

Good book. :-)

Friday, March 25, 2011

In The Past

An interesting thing I have learned about the past is that it doesn't exist. As soon as I have lived a moment, it is gone never to be reclaimed. We say something is "in the past" just like we would say something is "in the bedroom" or "in the closet".... when in actuality... nothing is in the past because the past is gone. If there is something in the closet, that presumes I can go and get it. If something is in the past... I cannot go and get it. I cannot touch it, relive it or change it..... I can do nothing with it. I can see the CONSEQUENCES of things that have happened in the past... I can see the scars (and the beauty)... but I cannot see the past. God is the "I AM". He is here in this moment. And I want to be where He is.

So I was told... when something comes into my head that is "in the past" and I hurt because of it, or I carry it around with me...... or let myself be accused because of it ... I am to tell myself it doesn't exist.

Surprisingly... repeatedly telling myself something doesn't exist has given me a great deal of freedom. I know it happened. But I also know it is NOT currently happening and does not exist any longer. All there is ... is now.

So here I am. Today. Now. Free of the past.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Punching Bag

I've noticed that people in our apartment complex often place things by the dumpster that seem to be perfectly good and I suppose they are just wanting someone to take it so they don't have to deal with it when they are moving out. Not long after moving here, I saw this punching bag and stopped and picked it up. It is in excellent condition and I checked online and it probably costs about $50 to $60 new. It has water in the base to weigh it down. Jacob loves it!

But it does give me an uncomfortable feeling to have a punching bag of this sort in my house. :-) Some of you know where I'm going with this. But I thought I would tell a story of a sweet little 5 or 6 year old girl and an unfortunate event involving a punching bag. This particular punching bag was similar to the one I picked up by the dumpster, but the pole was much more narrow- about the width of a pencil, I think. Somehow, the bag had been removed while the little girl and her baby brother and sister were playing. As the poor little girl was carrying her baby brother, she dropped him and he landed on the punching bag pole. With his head. It went straight up through his head, sort-of behind his ear, and out the top! She ran to get her mother, but her mother had already heard the screams and was on her way to the bedoom. She arrived to find her only son impaled on the punching bag pole. All she could think to do was run to him and pull him up off the pole.

As bad luck would have it, this horrific incident happened during a Michigan blizzard. While the mom held a towel to her son's head, which was gushing blood, the dad of the family went to shovel the car out of the garage so they could get to the hospital, and, in such a panic, as you can imagine, backed the car out of the garage.... twice... with the driver's side door open, damaging the door and the garage. (Okay, that's kind-of funny, right? Don't worry, this story has a happy ending).

The elderly couple across the street were called to come and get the sisters. The elderly lady asked the girls where their "stockings" were and they didn't know she just meant "socks".

As it turned out, according to the x-ray, the pole narrowly missed anything really important in the brother's head. And he got a stuffed elephant while he was in the hospital, which he named "Elly". But the guilt-ridden sister drew pictures of herself crying.

Yes, my dear readers, that little girl was me. And yes, I nearly killed my brother Matthew 35 years ago... on a punching bag. And it's funny to me that what I remember most clearly about all of this was Mrs Pichey asking me to get my "stockings" on.

So, even though the pole on this punching bag I got for Jacob is much, much thicker and doesn't really appear that it could cause anyone serious damage... the rule is that the bag stays on, or it goes back to the dumpster. No bagless punching bags in my house, even free ones.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Another Quilt

When my mom started quilting as a hobby, I don't think she realized the entire family was going to want their own. (That's like 15 or 16 quilts!) Today Jacob's arrived. He was SOOO excited..... I think she out-did herself.....

When I asked Jacob if he wanted to call his grandmother and thank her, he said, "She knows I'm thankful". :-) He will call you later, mom!

Faith Comes By Hearing

My new favorite way to access God's Word... how cool is this? I saw this on my cousin Kristy's blog and ordered one right away from this website. It's available in different versions... I chose the New Testament in the ESV. It comes with the MP3 player, battery and head phones...

And in just 28 minutes per day, you can listen to the entire New Testament in 40 days!
I will be keeping this in my purse!
I love the mission of this company- to distribute God's Word in audio format.... great for people who can't read!!!! Love it!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Holy Ground

One time...
Tending sheep, working, working....
I saw...
a bush ablaze...
....never burnt.


Drawn, I go toward
those signs
from God..
they are
are mysterious and thrilling.

I can't resist them.

I wait and wait on them
I chase and chase them
I crave and crave them
I love them.

I wonder....
Would I
and chase
and crave
and love...
"just" God?

Close to the sizzling, sparkling bush....
A voice....
This ground
is holy,

Because God.

Look down.
Feet made by God
Dirt made by God

made by Clarks of England.

Between us,
God and I,
should be nothing

Not my......
good works,

Brenda, take them off.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Some more Home Decor

My bird feeder and wind chimes from a better angle.... (I've had lots of visitors to my feeder!!! They do make a mess... but I enjoy their singing)..... New pot of flowers..... the pot itself was a present from Sarah and her friend, Fleur, that they bought me with my own money one night while they were shopping. I LOVE it. And it will always remind me of Fleur.

My new stands I got at Lowe's. I put them so that I can see the flowers from the recliner inside the apartment. :-)

Love this cookie jar and crock I found at Pier 1:

These things make me happy!!!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Flat Tire

So, the day I got my nails done, I was doing what should never be done... because it's illegal and dangerous... I was trying to send a text... and I swerved while entering the highway and hit the curb. All seemed okay, though, so I went on to work. Then I left work in the afternoon, picked up my kids and drove home. At the entrance to my apartment complex, my tired went flat. I know God was surely watching over me since the tire made it all the way home. You can't see so much in the picture, but the tire was seriously damaged and it didn't take a tire expert to see it.

My friend Tammy was nearby, so she came to "help". Her idea of helping was to start getting the spare out of the trunk and hope that a big strong man (who knew what he was doing) would stop and help us! Well, we got started with the help of my dad on the phone while several men drove right by us! Finally the apartment maintenance man came by and did the hard work. I watched him carefully and think I could probably do it myself next time. But I was so thankful for the help. This was probably my first I-really-wish-I-was-married moment and I came through it fine! Because MY husband is the biggest and strongest and happens to be the Ruler of the Universe and he can just speak and hold my tire together. :-)

P.S. Happy birthday Jacob! (More later on that... I haven't seen him, yet, today :-( ).

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Miscellaneous Cool Things

How cool is this? I had my blog printed into a book finally!! It turned out to be like 347 pages or something.... but I LOVE it. I figure I will do this every couple of years... what a neat way to keep a journal of my life!!!

I've spent some of my free time (while the kids are with Tim) making jewelry. These particular beads are so pretty! I got alot of them at our new JoAnn Fabrics store! If you're reading Sonja, I sure do miss making jewelry with you!!! Here's RuRu.... I love him, but I have to admit there are times when I wish I could just be ALONE.... no dog following me everywhere I go... eating my shoes... biting my pant legs... etc. The only real benefit I can see he is bringing me right now is that he sort-of forces me to get out and walk! :-)

Have a good day!!

Friday, March 18, 2011

More Things Going on in My Life

I picked up this book for just a few dollars on the clearance rack at the bookstore and was almost done with it before I realized it was the first book in a trilogy. I really enjoyed it and so I ordered (and received yesterday) the second two books. Can't wait to get started reading them! I'll write more after I finish them. I have been trying to memorize Philippians... and I printed off the whole book from this neat website that my friend Lisa told me about and pasted it in this little notebook that I carry around in my purse. I have not made alot of progess on it, but still I keep carrying it. :-)

I splurged and got this awesome ESV study bible... I just love it and it has sort-of re-energized me to get back to reading every day, highlighting, journaling, etc.

My friend Tammy has started doing nails again, so I took advantage of her services. I had to file my thumbs so I could text!! But I just love them!

While the girls and I were in Nashville for Jacob's hockey tournament, we went and toured the Belmont mansion at Belmont College. It was actually an interesting tour/story- I recommend it! And I bought this lovely nylon-fabric-covered candle holder in the gift shop. I love it.

I know these blog posts aren't very exciting... but at least I am posting!!! :-)

Thursday, March 17, 2011


My post earlier today should have come BEFORE the one about cooking all the meat and will fit will with some of the ones that will come in the next few days... :-) Because, seriously, I am trying to do better about having a handle on life.

Anyway... below is the progress I have made on the cabinet... the paint was still a little wet when I took the picture. I bought all of the paint on a the clearance rack at walmart, and I thought I had gotten white paint... but when I opened the can, it was taupe. So I decided to go with a new vision and use the taupe, since it's way too late to return it. :-) More to come... it's going to look so good!!!! :-)

My Life

When I was a young(er) girl, I dreamt of getting married and buying an old farm house. We'd live a peaceful, happy life with a few happy, frolicking children. I would happily keep my house sparkling clean, make pies and delicious meals from the fresh produce from our garden. We would call dinner "supper". On summer days, I would hang the laundry on my clotheslines. When it rained, I would sit on the covered porch and smell the wet earth....

Well, things didn't work out quite that way... although I did enjoy many years as a homemaker and stay-at-home mom, for which I am thankful.

My life has changed, though. And I find myself still longing for that farm house.

In some ways, I can say the changes in my life have been for the better. In other ways.... well... see for yourself. I'm not going to say that I always kept an immaculate house when I was a full time mom and homemaker, but since becoming a single, working mom, and part-time student, my home is pretty consistently messy these days. I just can't keep up with it. And I don't like that. And I can't take responsibility for the girls' room being a mess, but I can't keep up with keeping on them about it, either. So Sarah and her friend sit on un-made beds with clothes scattered all over the floor to study. They don't seem to mind. I do not see how they can study in this environment.

My bedroom is neater than theirs, but my bed is usually covered in school books, papers, the laptop, etc. Often I fall asleep with this stuff around me.

The loveseat has been converted into a "laundryseat", as it is usually covered in clean, unfolded laundry. Often much more than this...

And, I'm studying Accounting, but managing my own checkbook has proven to be beyond my abilities most of the time....

I spend my days "building an empire" of furniture and appliance stores (quote by my boss). Really? When did my life become about empire-building??

I spend my evenings running the kids around and going through drive-thrus because I'm too tired to cook. When I have spare time, I use it to sleep.

Is this a blog post or a prayer request? Ha ha. :-)
It's really just a glimpse into my life. My next post will be more positive!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Being Efficient

The kiddos are with Tim this week, so I am trying to use the time to get ahead a little. I've been cooking meat and putting it in the freezer. I have plans for the next couple days to put together some casseroles to freeze, too. At my parent's house on Christmas Eve, I won a big box of Rubbermaid containers.... perfect for freezing meats!

Cooking ground chuck and boiling chicken....

I seasoned some of the ground chuck with taco seasoning.....

Ready for some quick meals....

Go me!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

My Next Project

Found this by the dumpster a while back.... I have big plans for it. These are just the BEFORE pictures. Hopefully in the next few days I will have the AFTER pictures.... First order of business was to fill the holes on top....

Removed the door pulls... got some new ones at Home Depot today....

Don't have the kids this week, so I have to take pictures of the grandpuppy for my mom... ha ha ha ha.....