Friday, January 29, 2010


Oh, my heart hurts for my girls right now. For the past couple of months, I have seen their attitudes and disposition toward each other go down the toilet. They treat each other (and my husband and I) with such dishonor and disrespect, more times than not it seems. Now they are finding that they have formed habits and are "accidentally" treating their friends the same way at times.

I know seeds take time to take root and we certainly have had "seasons" of attitude struggles. But, why the sudden change for the worse? Is it lack of time with them? Are they copying things they see in their parents? Is it "just a phase"? (although that doesn't cut it for me). I could punish them and give them consequences for their actions (and in a few, extreme circumstances, we have). But I want their actions to be a result of their hearts full and overflowing with love.

I had a "heart to heart" with the girls tonight. I tried to explain, again, that their words express love for their family, but their actions "speak" the opposite. I don't want to shame them. That won't produce any fruit. They admitted that they treat people at school better than their family. Elizabeth expressed that it was because at home they get "charged around." Pretty cute phraseology. Augh, now what? Jesus, I want their hearts to be so in love with you that they can't help but treat others with that same love and respect. This parenting thing sure is heart-wrenching work sometimes!!

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Here's an honor challenge for me:
My oldest daughter, Grace, is eight years old. She is an artist and an entrepreneur. About 18 months ago, she decided she would right books about all different subject and sell them for $1000 each to raise money for our new house. I told her she could post a sign on the porch and see if anyone wanted to buy some. She wrote 2 books, but never got the sign up. The inspiration passed in a week or so. Months later, she came back to me and said, "I see now, mom, that $1000 per book was a lot of money to ask." Lesson learned, memories made, no harm done.

Now she is older and is attending school. And here is her latest business idea: She has created these things she calls "puff balls." They are about 2 inches in diameter and consist of a dozen or so short pieces of yarn, somehow tied together at the center to make - a puff ball. She has made a sign listing the variety of colors and sizes and their accompanying prices. Oh, and she is also offering paper baskets that she is weaving herself with brown construction paper. In light of the situation in Haiti, her school is collecting money and relief supplies. Grace's goal is to make and sell these puff balls, giving the proceeds to Haiti. She has contacted family members in pursuit of yarn and intends to buy more at the dollar store with her Papa as I write. I mean, she is zealous about this idea!!!

The dilemma: Should I try to intervene? I've already offered a price adjustment suggestion, which she took to, partially. But she is collecting many skeins of yarn with no clue as to the reality of her pursuits. Will her friends actually buy some? Will she be the laughing stalk of her class? Will she be able to make any more than a few puff balls and baskets? My mama's heart wants to "save" her the potential heart break. At the same time, I've learned that Jesus is her keeper, not me. I want to honor her in every one of her passions and pursuits. She is so precious in her desires, but so unrealistic!? I don't want to "burst her bubble" with a reality check, but.....sigh...all in a day's work ;-)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Report Cards

The kids brought home their report cards tonight. It was a flashback in time for me looking at their grades, all A's.....the apples don't fall far from the tree. Yet, I REALLY don't want them to become the same variety of apple as this mom. When I was in school, so much of my identity and value was tied up in my grades and performance. No matter how well I did, it was never good enough. YUCKNESS!!

So tonight, I decided to celebrate my girls' good reports and order out for dinner. (Yes, I'm always looking for a way out of making dinner.) In any case, as we sat around the dinner table, I was sure to be clear with them: We are celebrating them and the fact that they did their best. And we will keep celebrating that no matter what letters don their report cards throughout the years. IF I had to choose, I'd rather see them raising the dead than producing perfect performances.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Learning to Deal

My oldest daughter needed a tube sock for an unknown school project last week. I put out a request via e-mail to some family and friends. It could be used but without holes. So Grandma brought us an old sock of Grandpa's. The sock was in decent shape and although it was a tube sock, it now had a very defined heel worn into it. The instructions were clearly for a TUBE SOCK, no heel or toe in the sock. So I went on a hunt for a new tube sock. I am convinced that only a VERY small percentage of the population wears these things anymore. After being unsuccessful at one store, I found some at Target. A pack of 10 none-the-less.

As I drove home, I thought "I could just give Grace the used sock and let her deal with the heel imperfection". Memories of childhood projects, posters, crafts and costumes came to mind. My amazingly creative mother was always there to make sure my project was neat, beautiful and of the utmost quality. Some would say, "perfect." It's how she showed her love and it was something she did so well. That became my "norm" in life, only adding to the perfectionism with which I lived.

The thought came to me on my ride home from Target, "If I spend my energy trying to make things perfect for my children, I will rob them of opportunities to learn how to deal with the imperfections of life." Teaching them excellence and good care is one thing. Eliminating learning opportunities is another.

Tube sock, anyone?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Poop and Pot Roast

What do these 2 things have in common? Well, besides the obvious, they happen to be 2 things I handled within 3 minutes of each other today. I chuckled as I thought, "Only a mom has the "privilege" of changing 2 poopy diapers and prepping a roast for the crock-pot all within 30 minutes."

I'm not really a fan of pot roast, or of poop, really. But I stumbled upon an AMAZING recipe that uses balsamic vinegar....for the roast, that is. It is a venison roast, might I add. BTW, I DID wash my hands between jobs.

On another poop note, my almost 4 year old pooped in the potty today for the first time...EVER!!! Whoohoo! If he wasn't my 4th child, I'd be rather uptight and embarrassed to admit that he is not potty trained yet. But even my parents gave it their best shot and finally admitted, "he just doesn't get it!" I rest assured knowing he will not graduate high school with a cap and gown and....diaper.

Ahh...and the day is only half over! I love my life!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Back in the Saddle

So, here I am writing a post on my blog about a topic yet to be determined. Actually, the Lord has convicted me more than once that I need to be blogging. He has told me that although my writing may seem insignificant to me, others need to read it. Hmmm...
Now I must confess that my procrastination in writing is due, in part, (ok, maybe mostly) to my self-imposed pressure to come up with something seemingly "worthwhile" (whatever that means) and polished. Those of you who are also recovering perfectionists know what I mean. It's the whole reason I was up until the wee hours of the morning in high school working on a report due that day. I didn't start earlier because I wanted to do it perfect the first time....none of this rough draft thing. I never gave myself grace to be in process, to learn, to make mistakes, to grow. That grace was never modeled to me on earth. And I guess I overlooked my heavenly example. Duh. It's the same reason why I never wanted to switch to a new piano teacher when my current teacher had taught me as much as she could: Heaven forbid a new teacher should see my mistakes and that I still have some learning to do. How twisted?! How arrogant?!

After a recent, deep conversation with a very precious friend, I realized that I need to get over the death of my flesh and stop reliving memories of my old self. In conclusion, I will be posting all kinds of stuff, worthwhile or not. And if any of you are reading this and don't see a post from me for awhile, you have my permission to send me an e-mail or post a comment asking me "where are you?" And if no one is reading this, well, then, I don't know....

Happy day to you!