Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Lost: my mind. Please return if found

Its official, I have lost my mind. Its got to be out there somewhere.

For those of you who know me, try to hide the shock that up until this point it was indeed intact. Thankyouverymuch.

What leads me to believe that my mind is currently dwelling with the Lost Boys? Twice this week I forgot appointments. Twice. Completely. You want to know why? I didn't put them into my super special phone that carries all information crucial to my survival. And therefore, I would have had to actually think - imagine!- to know where I was meant to be. Clearly, that was not in my cards this week. Next thing you know I will be putting a reminder in my phone to remind me to put in my appointments.

When on earth did my fairly sharp mind ( I said sharp, not smart!) mind lose the ability to think? Are we too dependent on gadgets and gizmos to get us through our day? Are we so completely overbooked that there is no possible way we can keep our lives straight?

Some days I long to be a part of a time where there were no computers, cell phones, or frankly even phones in every home. A simple time where families worked together and played together because that was all you could do.

And then my microwave beeps because my popcorn is done and I snap out of it and thank God for how far we have come. :)

How about you? Do you depend on technology to get you through the day? Or are you still thinking about getting on board with one of those crazy things called a tape deck?

Monday, April 26, 2010

So long insecurity?...gulp! - updated

This past Saturday I had the privilege of attending a Beth Moore Simulcast. 369 locations participated with over 300,000 women joining together yet apart in the name of God! That was awesome. To think that others out there, were worshipping at the same time, hearing the same message, together across the country. Only God.

I wish that if you weren't there, that you could have been. Beth Moore has an amazing gift for delivering God's message with a fiery passion. There is a lot of volume packed into that tiny package! :) I am not sure what I expected to get out of this, but the title "So long Insecurity, you've been a terrible friend" was a pretty enticing notion.  Especially if you consider that over our lunch break a few of us were standing outside and as I caught my own reflection in the window, my only thought was "Wow, who is that behind me, oh wait, that's still me, why did I wear these pants?!" Ahem. Yeah. The irony is not wasted on me.

I won't go into great detail about what she said, but want to give you some background on the day. After all, no one can say it like she does, and I'd just look like a fool trying to make a sentence.

Beth explained that insecurity is an example of a lack of faith and that insecurity and humility are not the same. Honestly, that spoke volumes to me! I am never able to accept compliments or toot my own horn for and use the excuse of humility in conjunction with insecurity. To be told that this is truly a lack of faith in who God made me to be was a real eye opener.

At the end of the simulcast, we paired up and commissioned each other. Telling one another that we are WORTHWHILE, A CHILD OF GOD, EXCEPTIONAL, and honestly I wish I could remember more of exactly what the comission was.

So after all of this, what have I done to change? After all, in Ephesians 4 we are called to take off the old, and put on the new self. We need to be a before and after in our lives. My issue? My insecurity is like my security blanket. Its like someone who never cuts their hair short because they feel it is their security. They would feel exposed without it. I feel exposed without insecurity. I have so much self doubt blanketing my every move, to take that away would cut like a raw winter's wind. I feel the moment I am confident in myself, something or someone will come around and laugh or cut me down and remind me that I have no right to be sure of anything I do. Please know, I am not looking for pitty, I am simply opening up to the deep down of my heart and sharing what's there. This is not an easy task for me.

My commission, to take up my faith. To know that God doesn't make mistakes. To know with confidence that I am Saved from myself, Entitled to truth, Clothed in righteousness, Upended by grace, Rebounded by love, and Exceptional in life.

One of the closing lines was "Are others worth what it would take for you to walk in the security of life?" I answer with a resounding "YES!"  You are worth seeing what being a secure Christian woman is. You are worth seeing what God has the power to do, and only God can do that.

So, dear friends, I am taking off my insecurity blanket, I will walk in confidence. For I am His, and He is mine.

Won't you join me?

*Updated just a few short hours after the original post-  I just had to share this with y'all because really. God is working on me full force. He has no intention of waiting for me to take off my insecurity blanket!
I had a lunch meeting today (which I forgot about until a co-worker called to remind me and I had to hussle to get ready) So, this was an educational meeting with about 35 hairdressers. You know, pretty people in one room. Love that. Ahem. So, as I sat down and took off my jacket, it hooked on my chair. Next thing I know my chair is next to me and I am on the floor. Honestly there are times that could have been embarrassing enough to me to bring me to tears- like the time it happened in church (evidently being "Upended in Grace" has taken on a quite literal meaning in my life) I managed to laugh at myself, and though it got warm in there for a minute, it was okay. I was okay. And we moved on and I moved on. That is security.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


I have never had a garden. However, I have been wanting to start a garden for quite some time. I love fresh veggies in the summer and fresh herbs all year long. We really never had the space for one before.Or my dear hubby never wanted to till one up for me.  Last year I tried our an above ground patio garden and did okay. Other than my jalepenos coming out red due to the cross pollination in the small box. But once I made salsa I was hooked and knew I needed a bigger better garden. Nothing beats homemade salsa!

So, enter in my husbands job that takes him out of state to the same location all the time and will for a few years to come. And enter into us making a real estate investment to give him a home away from home. Enter in my garden space! Actually 2 garden spaces! Since the kids and I plan to spend a lot of time with him there this summer, we hope to grow some of our own veggies. And succeed.

So, being the frugal gal that I am (here is where my husband would be choking in shock if he actually read my blog) Anyway, I wanted a way to fill the garden without breaking the bank on all the starter plants. So at Sam's I picked up this dandy little garden starter kit. You put the seeds in these pods and then cover with the dome.
Miss Maicy hard at work

The seeds tucked into their little homes and snug as a bug

Our seeds catching some sun

Tada!! One short week later we have sprouts! The beans may need to find dirt really soon!
The others are coming along nicely!

It is so much fun to watch the kids check the progress every day. They are so excited to check out the changes. Who knows, we may even be able to eat the labor of love.

How about you? Do you garden? Have any tips you can offer me?!
Or do you say, that's what farmer's market is for?
Or, are you still wondering what vegetables are and why people would eat them?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

My Baby Girl

Today, my baby turns 7. Happy Birthday, Maicy Jo!!
You are an amazing girl. God has blessed us more than we can imagine with you.
You have an infectious laugh, loving eyes, and hugs that could warm any cold heart.

I can't believe that its been 7 years since this moment:

I remember this day so well. Me walking the halls, horrified that when we had our choice of what day to have the baby, we actually chose, April 15. Really?! Tax day?! Who wants that for a birthday?! Too late, she was going to come no matter what. And as I walked, my dear husband napped because after all, having babies is hard work. :) He may never live that down. He was tired. I was just hanging out after all. And then after just a few short ~ahem~ hours of labor, there she was, 7lbs 2 oz of blushing pink. HUGE compared to my firstborn, but so tiny when I held her the first time.

1st Birthday (after the tornadoes left the area)
You can still find her loving chocolate cake this much!

Bunny Trail here ---> Her 1st birthday party was insane.We had just moved a week before into our newly built house. Kitchen counters were being installed  hours earlier (that was midnight til 3 am. Great installers to come out yet at that hour-Not that I gave them a choice) I had no kitchen sink,(despite the pleas, bribes, and possibly threats, made to the plumbers) made all the food in a fog,  and then an hour before the party, tornado sirens started blaring. Somehow we still managed to have a great party, and one we'll never forget! 

And this is now. *sigh* God bless this one, she really has broken the mold. (maybe the tornadoes should have been a warning...)

Happy, happy Birthday, Miss Maicy! We love you so much and wouldn't want you to be any less you!

God spoiled us greatly!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Spring is in the air...

After what seems to have been the longest winter ever, signs of spring are beginning to pop up all around.
I finally dare to change out my kids winter clothes for summer clothes and round up all the mittens, gloves and snow pants. I never pack it too far away because, well, its Iowa. One really can't predict tomorrows weather here. But for now, spring is in the air, and I am loving it!

And with spring, comes soccer. Last year at this time we sat out there as brave parents and faced the 40mph wind gusts and 20 degree windchill. I am trying to remember what I love about spring...

Could be moments like these....
This year, we got started again on soccer with impressive winds. Fortunately we are sitting at 65 degrees so it only felt as bad as 50 or so out there. Yeah, this is a good thing.


I want to highlight the differences between girls and boys soccer. As you can see above, boys are focused starting at a very young age. Girls,well, not so much.
What we have here folks is a riveting game of rock, paper, scissors. I suggested at this point that perhaps she should pay attention to which she stated very matter of factly that she isn't playing now, so she doesn't need to know what's going on.

Boys, they have grit, determination, ready at a moment notice for that ball to come their way. (Mine is the one on the far left with the navy shorts and blue shirt, and what's that? No more hockey hair.:(  )

Next, Maicy demonstrates proper stretching. During the game of course.

Focused, fierce, playing to win it.

Things are looking up, she is playing the game...
And now doing the happy dance. Without having scored. We are celebrating kicking the ball in the right direction. Yeah!! And this is where the poor college student who is coaching is wondering what he did to get the girls team!

There you have it, girls vs boys. Frankly, I love watching both of them. I just wish I could do it without 40mph winds.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Still Celebrating Easter

This is my Easter Weekend recap. Which is a kind way to say- its gonna jump all over the place, so bear with me! Here to start us off is my 2 most beautiful children on Easter morning. Of course, my computer is being ridiculous and I grabbed the picture where Jackson is complaining that the sun is making him squint. But, you get the idea. They're cute. At least in my opinion and I might be biased.

Next we- which was actually before, but that's not the order we're telling this story. And yes, I realize I haven't actually told you ANYTHING at all yet. You really should be used to that by now if you've been here before. Oh, I was mid- sentence wasn't I? Anyway, next we baked and decorated some festive spring cut out cookies. May have been that we were just so excited to experience Spring weather, we had to go with it.
Here is my little sous chef helping me:

She would tell you that I am actually the assistant and she is the head chef, but its my blog and she isn't here, so I'll tell it my own way. It turns out that I didn't even take a picture of the cookies when they were done, so you'll have to take my word for it that they were fabulous!

Between many church services and doctors appointments (which I promised my son that I would stop talking about since he is embarrassed enough even though HE wants to take his xrays to school) we managed to get a wedding shower in for my niece.

I am sparing those people who had to wear toilet paper wedding dresses the humiliation of putting those pics on here because I would like to think that the same courtesy would be shown to me. Thankyouverymuch. This is my niece Shawna in the middle surrounded by her loving and caring and super fun aunts (of course, I would be the favorite *ahem*! again, my blog, I tell it my way)

But with all the hustle and bustle and here and there, I still had the chance to reflect on the best week. It is such an emotionally overwhelming week and I needed the time to take it in and process all that HE has done for me.

Maundy Thursday we had a moving service at our church with communion. We don't usually go up to the front to receive the communion, but on this day we do. And it meant something. To go up to the front and have the elder hand you a cup of wine and say "His blood, shed for you, Alicia" it doesn't get more personal and meaningful than that. There is no denying it at that point. No self doubt that, well, He really couldn't have died for me, just these other good people in the room. He calls us by name and he knows my name.

Then there was the song this weekend. I listened to it over an over on my Selah CD and we sang it in church. If you read my last post you know how I wanted my daughter to understand that Jesus died, we are forgiven, it is finished. She sat there next to me in church and read the words aloud and allowed the Holy Spirit to guide her in joining in the words....

How deep the Father's love for us

How vast beyond all measure

That He should give His only Son

And make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss

The Father turns His face away

As wounds which mar the Chosen One

Bring many sons to glory

Behold the man upon the cross

My sin upon His shoulder

Ashamed I hear my mocking voice

Call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there

Until it was accomplished

His dying breath has brought me life

I know that it is finished

I will not boast in anything

No gifts, no power, no wisdom

But I will boast in Jesus Christ

His death and resurrection

Why should I gain from His reward

I cannot give an answer

But this I know with all my heart

His wounds have paid my ransom
And then, one more time during this spring break that song was sung in our church. Today at the funeral of a young mom. She has a child in each of my kids' classes. I am sorry to say I never got to know her - I could make excuses as to why, but they are just excuses. I know her family, her kids, her husband, her extended family. But I missed the chance to know her.
It was a fitting song today as much as it was on Thursday. His wounds have paid the price. And she is now in glory with Him.
This Easter season has come full circle. He died, He rose, He saves those who die. He saved us.
How was your Easter? Did you find eggs, creep your kids out with the bunny? Find new meaning in an old song?
God is good, all the time!