bare white

bare white


It's a 'Monday kind of Tuesday' type of day

You know, the kind that you feel the moment you roll out of bed. The kind that makes you want to roll back INTO bed and sleep a bit longer and then try again. Like the 2nd grade do-overs we had when we played anything as a kid and it wasn't going our way. The kind that, from the get go, you are four steps behind. That's the kind of day today has been. A dreary day on what is a truly beautiful, cold sunny day.

I cannot put my finger on why. Maybe it is because I am trying to stop my carbonated beverage addiction intake so my head is pounding like a loud drum that just won't stop. Maybe it is because I have this sweet baby boy, just barely out of what was once a swollen womb, waking me often in the wee hours of the night. Maybe it is because I had to stop an argument the moment I walked down our steps and then what seemed like every few minutes afterward.  Whatever the reason, it happened. And for some reason it seems like it should be nearing dinner time and when I look at that ticking clock hanging on my grey wall I realize the seconds just seem to go slower and slower. Can that be?

These are the days I feel like I just keep failing as a Momma. I let words spill, like that glass of milk earlier, and I just cannot clean them up fast enough. These are the days that I try to shine for my kids, but for some reason I cannot seem to get out of my warm, comfy pjs...even they notice as I am driving down the street, wave to a neighbor in the car passing us and my oldest says, "Mom why did you you really want them to see you like that?" I laugh. I have to laugh to get through this 'Monday kind of Tuesday' day.  I am telling myself to laugh so I don't cry.

These are the days I wonder why God has allowed me to be a mom because after 9 years I still cannot get it right. I know I am not alone. I know there are other Moms that feel this way. I know you are out there and have had these same kind of PJ wearing, neighbor seeing, child embarrassing kind of days.
These are the days I cling ever so tightly to these words :

"I shower blessings on you daily, but sometimes you don't perceive them. When your mind is stuck on a negative focus, you see neither Me or My gifts. In faith, thank Me for whatever is preoccupying your mind. This will clear the blockage so that you can find Me." (Jesus Calling)

HE wants to inhabit my thoughts - no matter how rocky they may be. He wants to inhabit my words - even when they seem to spill. HE wants to inhabit me so I can reflect HIM to my silly, crazy, loving, sweet, argumentative, tiring, precious kids.

SO I give thanks :
- thank you for the shampoo in the shower
- thank you that I managed to get a peaceful shower even though it was well past lunch time
- thank you for the littlest one deciding he wanted to sleep all afternoon - I needed that this day.
- thank you for a piano teacher that walks down to pick up my piano student
- thank you for ice tea
- thank you for a messy house and that I am madly in love with all 8 of the hands that got it that way
- thank you for a husband who loves me, checks in on me and won't be home for awhile so I can get the house picked back up
- thank you for slippers - warm slippers
- thank you for big blue eyes staring at me when she wakes up from her sleepy nap
- thank you for chipped finger nail polish
- thank you for the snack stealing little girl who just keeps forgetting our rule that she isn't allowed to get her own snacks
- thank you for gluten free pretzels
- thank you for Reese's peanut butter cups
- thank you for Sunshine today because if it was another cloudy day I may just have rolled back into bed
- thank you for pictures to remind us Spring will will come!

 - thank you that I was able to write this without sweet baby waking up so I can remember on the next cloudy day what this day looked like and the cure - Give Thanks! Eucharisteo!


Food, Memories and a Lane Change

I've mentioned before how I kinda grew up in a family in which all of us, at one time or another, became, well -  kinda foodies.  Having a grandmother who baked all of the time and working in our family's Restaurant since I can remember definitely played a huge part in this. It made it hard to resist homemade everything and anything. It also gave me a love for cooking and baking. I have so many amazing memories that all started around our table, eating delicious food prepared by grandma Helen, my mom and aunts.  Not only memories but amazing, heart to heart conversations happened around that same, large table. As well as Bible reading from my grandfather, and prayers - deep, earnest, heartfelt prayers. It was around this same table we all gathered the day grandpa Gene died and beat us all to heaven. We gathered to eat and remember, knowing that table will never be quite the same.

Well, life has just become a little interesting for us this past year...namely the past month or so. Our oldest, who just turned nine during our bitter cold winter, has had sensitive skin since the moment she entered this world flailing her arms wildly about. The sensitive skin turned to eczema early on. Mostly brought about by our crazy mid-western weather changes and new from the store clothing that had not been washed first. Last year it took a turn for the worse and I still put it off thinking it was just her eczema getting worse and bathe her in any natural lotion remedy we could get our hands on. Winter turned to spring, turned to summer and it started looking better, but still never went away fully. Last summer, turned to fall, turned to bitter cold winter and her skin turned bright red, dry, cracking, itching then burning and hurting - a vicious cycle - primarily on her arms but also on her legs some.  This year there was also a new addition...what appeared to be, blisters....tiny blisters. (If you would like to view of pictures of this - dermatitis herpetiformis) So after visiting our Chiropractor we decided to take all gluten out of her diet. This is no easy feat - for those of you who have taken gluten out know what I am talking about. After a couple of weeks of TRYING to take all gluten out, her arms started looking better - for the first time in what seemed like forever. So we did our own little test, put gluten back in for a day, the next morning we woke up to a little, big girl with arms so raw and red again. I went back to the researching trying to find out what all gluten is in....oh my goodness - it is in everything. Everything.

As of now, we are hopeful it is only a severe reaction/allergy/sensitivity to gluten and not Celiac Disease. But either way, we are on the road to becoming gluten free. And a road, or rather highway, it is.

Growing up in this restaurant gave us all a love for grandmas dinner rolls. Afterall, whenever we'd walk into their home and a home it was - so comforting, so peaceful, we'd smell the dough immediately. Now that this gluten intolerance has graced itself into our lives I am on a mission to find a way to make amazing food - Grandma Helen worthy - that can be served around our table safely for all to indulge in. I may post a few findings here for other gluten free families to enjoy. So stay tuned - on our journey! Life truly is a joyous journey!


10 years and a year and a half ago

10 years ago today I was giddy like a child awaiting Christmas morning. I knew when I woke up the next day, everything would change again.
10 years and a year and a half ago, my life did change. It was the start of everything and then end of somethings.

It started with a wedding of a friend. Then visiting and hanging out and riding go-carts - which began in innocent fun, but quickly turned into a competitive go-cart race - I have the scar to prove it. Then leaving on a plane that never left the ground...for him. This was the day everything changed.

She raced us home from an early morning workout (yes, these were the days that activity was consistent for me) as we were listening to the radio we heard what seemed to be like a joke - a sick joke. We were fearful. We knew he flew out that morning...could he have been on one of those flights? Where was he? We pulled into the driveway and ran recklessly inside to see if everyone else had heard what we unbelievably did. They had. And there he was sitting on the couch - his flight had not left. "Thank you Jesus!" was all that exhaled from my body. This was the day our worlds collided in a way neither one of us thought, expected or even first. Truthfully, I prayed against it.  I was ready to travel the world and do and be whatever God wanted and wherever the wind blew.  I love to travel and see things I have never seen before. I love seeing how big our God is and how creative He was when He spoke our world into existence.

Nonetheless, we were stuck. Stuck in a Big state trying to get home to our much smaller states. Stranded with no proverbial end in site. Until...Honey. I don't mean honey as in sweet like Honey - though he was ever so sweet. I mean Honey as in his grandpa...that Honey. That's what they have called him since...well, forever.
Honey and Mam'ma came to drive him back to where he flew out of. I was the stow-away....or at least a girl who needed a ride to get me a little closer to what I called home. By this point, there was a mutual "intrigue".  The conversation was constant for our 22 hour hike. He offered to drive but it was short lived and then he was back in the seat next to me. Honey relentlessly teased him for this one thing. His grandfather was in his 80's driving us as far as he could, just because he knew we needed help. Little did Honey know he was part of a grander plan. He was part of a Glorious plan. He was a part of the rest of our lives.

Let me back up a bit and explain just why we were stuck. It was because of something horrific. I mentioned earlier that this time was the end of some things in our lives. It was the end of safety as we knew it. It was the end of flying fearlessly. It was the end of visiting the Big Apple as the way it was known by all.  It was the end of  innocence for so many. Our children, who had not even been a thought in our childish minds, would never know the world as we knew it. However, when the terrorists of those planes crashed into the towers of New York City, they had no idea they were really part of a beautiful plan. As horrific as it was, God worked something something amazing and something  that no one will ever forget. He took something so ugly and made it lovely.  But isn't that how our God works? Every day of our lives trading our sorrow and our sin for good? All is grace, beautiful grace! Trading ashes for beauty...only He can do that.

So we were stuck in that Big state with no way home except by the kindness of Honey.  Honey was our saving grace when the world stopped turning as we knew it. Like I mentioned, we talked the whole trip, asking silly question after silly question. We stopped for short breaks to stretch our cramping backs. We made it to his parents house finally in the ever so sleepy hours of the morning.  But made it, we did!

By this time my heart was beating a  little stronger, a little faster because of him. There was something different about him. He captured my sights and I just couldn't seem to look away. He was strong, steady...I needed (still do) steady. He had a deep voice, strong hands and those eyes...I couldn't look right into them, but I wanted to. I couldn't look into them because I knew he could read me. But these eyes, they captured me. The color of these eyes - well just look into our first born son and you will see. Someday his wife will understand exactly what I mean about "those eyes'.

We had a whole day before my parents could meet us in the middle of our two states and truthfully, I was glad...silly glad.  I was thrilled to see my family again...I was thrilled to have them meet this guy, but I was so thankful I had another day to learn more about the one who made a heart beat heart.

My parents knew, just as parents always do, I had someone for them to meet. And meet him, they did.
I told you, everything changed 10 years and a year and a half ago. Everything changed for him, for me. It was the start to our lives as we would come to know them.
10 years ago was the eve before I married this man. So to say I was giddy like a child awaiting Christmas morning is a bit of an understatement. I knew, when I woke up on March 7, 2003, I was going to get to marry this man. I knew our, what seemed never ending, drives between our states would be truly ending. I knew I would get to spend every waking moment with him. I knew I would be the one to have his children (...didn't know it would happen quite as fast as it did, but not for one second would I change a thing). I knew this was the start to our lives together. And together was where I wanted to be. And from here on out, we are just kinda...stuck like glue. And I like it that way.

Happy 10 years to the love of my life!

You & Me