Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Close the lid!

I was talking to a friend today and somehow we got on the subject of the germs that come out of your toilet when you flush.  He told me to look it up.  I did.  And now...I will always close the lid.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Soccer Mom

I officially signed Jake up for Soccer this week.  I took him to the Soccer Stop on Monday night to check it out.  I don't think he's slept well since then.  Every day he asks if it's soccer day yet.  Today was the day.  I think it was only appropriate that he already lost his soccer shirt this morning.  I mean, what's a 1st soccer day morning without Mommy blowing a gasket because somehow it walked off the kitchen counter to hide itself in the black hole of missing things in our house. Thankfully Daddy saved the day and saved me some therapy, by coming home to find the shirt.  It mysteriously made it's way to Mommy and Daddy's bed and under the covers, weird.  I also think it's protocol that all good soccer shirts reach the knees, even after being boiled in the washer and fried in the dryer.  

The one time he was sitting with the group, listening.

Learning to trap. was all worth it.  To add to the excitement, Jake's friend Jonathan also got to sign up for the same session.  There were many occasions when I just couldn't stop laughing, like when Jake went up to the coach and was poking his cheeks.  Or when he just laid down on the ground and said "I'm done, I'm tired."  All I could do was cover my mouth and turn away.  

Friday, January 7, 2011

Breathe Normally

The president of YFC USA is an outstanding speaker and thought provoker.  I get the privilege of hearing him speak on occasion and receive regular updates from him as encouragement.  He is a man of God and of the Word.  This latest fragment has especially been an encouragement to me personally.  Take the time to read it and remember to breathe normally.

Breathe Normally Dan Wolgemuth, YFC/USA President
"In the unlikely event of a loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will drop from the ceiling. Pull the mask to your face, cover your nose and mouth and continue to breathe normally."  
Breathe normally!  Are you kidding me?
This boilerplate message (or some close variation) gets delivered by diligent flight attendants on every commercial flight, and each time I'm struck by the ridiculous nature of the instruction.  With cabin pressure fluctuating and oxygen masks flopping, I don't think I would be breathing normally.  Would you?
And yet I understand the need for the directive... calm in the midst of chaos allows for better decision making and a more controlled process.  But trust and discipline are required.
Quite frankly, I've come to realize that this directive was something that Jesus taught; not while on a jet airliner, but certainly in the midst of chaos.  When life moves to an uncontrollable state... rest... trust... believe... breathe normally.  
On a tumultuous sea... breathe normally.
When cash won't buy enough groceries for a vast army... breathe normally.
During an onslaught from the enemy... breathe normally.
In the midst of false accusations... breathe normally.
Jesus knew that trust, authentic trust, could weather any storm, could confront any enemy, could surround any encounter... it was confidence in the powerful and perfect plan of God that created peace; even to the point where it "surpassed understanding."
The New Year will bring its fair share of fluctuating cabin pressure and deployed oxygen masks.  There will be ministry challenges, resource constraints, health issues, disappointing relationships... and the list grows.  Our pulse races, our breathing shortens and intensifies and we begin to doubt.  To wonder if God really can, or will, or ...
I want the peace of God to reign.  To permeate every situation.  To arrest every germ of doubt.  I want to breathe normally... even when...
Will you pray for peace in 2011?  Not the absence of problems; not the solution to every problem; not for perfect sailing; but for peace.
"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid." (John 14:27 ESV) 
Breathe normally... 
May peace be what marks this coming year.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy Birthday Dad, 62!

What do I get the guy who has everything?  Every year I find myself scrambling to come up with something meaningful for my parents for Christmas.  Because they never need anything, I usually end up going the picture route, a calendar of the kids or a framed photo taken up North, etc.  My Dad loves to grill, and specifically takes pride in his Weber charcoal grill.  I thought I'd really surprise him this year with these cool shish-kabob skewers, called Firewires.  You can bend them to fit more stuff on them, and also marinate the whole thing in a ziplock.  Pretty cool idea, huh?  It was cool and creative until he sat next to me Christmas morning with one in hand to show me what Santa brought him in his stocking!  He asked if I'd ever seen one before, of course I answered "no".  I just can't win!  I thought for sure he'd never seen one of these before.  But then again, he does hang out in hardware stores...I should've know better.   So Dad, since I'm still a little chapped about this whole Christmas present get nothing but a big fat "Happy Birthday" from me today.  In all seriousness, I couldn't ask for a better Dad, and if I really start going into great detail about how blessed I am to have such a great Father, this post will get way too lengthy.  And I'm just not feeling like getting the tissue out.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Kitchen Cabinets

We moved into this house in May.  Since the day I stepped inside, I wanted new kitchen cabinets, on top of several other hundred things.  Do you know how expensive new kitchen cabinets are?  You probably do, I didn't.  After learning how expensive the whole moving process is, we knew very quickly that our check-list of things would all have to be put on hold - new carpet for the downstairs, fireplace make-over, painting (which we did do), bathroom vanity, deck washed/stained, furniture, etc. etc. etc...

After deciding to tackle the kitchen cabinets ourselves, we are quite pleased.  And proud!


In process...

Sand, prime, sand, prime, sand, paint, paint, paint!

The make-shift stand to spray the nails.   Do not knock this over!

All painted, black.

Spray-painted the hinges also, we couldn't find any new ones that would line up with the existing holes...
so why re-drill?  By the way, this spray handle costs about $3 (or less), and is worth every penny.  

Ta da...

The funny part of this story is that it took us over a month to do the upper cabinets.  We worked on them after the kids were in bed, but often took several days off in between.  Then...once they were up, we pulled off a Christmas miracle and completed the bottom set in 5 days...before we had a houseful of guests for the Holidays.

Next up...maybe a backsplash?   Countertops?  I know...never content.