recipes. whatever is true. adoption. whatever is just. redemption. whatever is honorable. modesty. whatever is pure. motherhood. whatever is lovely. think about it.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

I Can Relate

"This is the day the Lord hath made and I will rejoice in it"
(No matter how bad it is...)

Today has been anything but perfect. If you have ever had "one of those days" in a three hour time span, I can definitely relate. Do you see that lady in the picture? Yep, that's me! What you don't see behind the photographer are my two boys; in yesterday's pajamas (at 2pm), covered in oatmeal, sitting in a pile of once-folded laundry, eating gummy vitamins out of child-proof container. Oh, and did I mention the carpet? My once clean and fresh carpet? Ahhh...allow me to share for your enjoyment.

11pm last night: Oldest crawls into our bed just in time to throw up all over my comforter, pillow and bedroom carpet. Strike one.


7am: Youngest wets his bed and wakes up in tears. Bath time.


8am: Youngest goes up to my bedroom just in time to 'wet' my bedroom carpet. More tears. Bath time again.

Cleaning...scrubbing...more laundry

9am: Getting dressed for the day and little one trips and falls on his head. More tears.

10am: Little one has 'cookies' (as he calls them) on my bedroom floor and then runs through it screaming and panicking. More tears (This time they are mine). Bath time. Again. OPEN and fan's blazing. Very cold. More tears. (still mine)

12noon: Little one decides to try an experiment in the potty. How many towels can you stuff in it before it overflows? Oh, just one large one? Hmmm. Well, I have to go potty and I'd hate to do it on mommy's floor again, so I'll just go on the bathroom floor. Afterall, it's already wet from the overflowed potty.

Aargh. Bath time. AGAIN!

1pm: Loading the kids in the van for a quick trip to Home Depot. The potty is broken. Go figure.

1:30pm: Little one sits in the driver's seat while I buckle in brother. I sit in the driver's seat. My pants are wet. Little one left a surprise and didn't tell me. Tears. Again.

1:45: Back to Home Depot for more carpet/upholstery cleaner.

2pm: Bed. Mommy needs a nap. This day is going to get better, right?!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Brotherly Love

I absolutely love that my sons are growing closer and closer every day. When one is napping the other one hovers around the stairs...pacing for his brother to wake up so they can be together. Now that the weather is warmer, they spend much of the waking hours outside in great discovery of what creation has to offer!

My oldest is very protective of the younger and even has that 'motherly' attitude; "No, you can't have your cookie didn't eat your great beans"; "Sit down or you are going to fall...are you listening to me? It's very dangerous!". This is cute, but can sometimes bring frustration as to the roles that we have in the home. My oldest wants to be the authority over his little brother when mom is out of earshot. We're working on that one!

They disagree and argue like any two little boys might, but my prayers is that very soon they would desire an attitude of respect and love for one another through my constant reminder. This past week we have been talking and reading books about kindness and respect (our library had some great children's resources!) and what God's word has to say about their love for one another. We're still working on the fruit of the Spirit as our main foundation and probably will for a long time!

Right before church yesterday. We went to my parent's church in the morning and my youngest wanted to wear his suit. Aren't they cute? Older son wore his tie. Navy tie. With black pants. Why does this bother me?? :)

Out to play for the day! We went to some garage sales as well and found some fun stuff! The boys love yard sales and my oldest can spot the signs a mile away!

Youngest models his pinstripe suit. On our way into church I told the boys that they both looked very nice. My oldest said, "Sure, but 'E' looks a lot more handsome today." I reminded them that we may look beautiful on the outside, but if our hearts are stinky that's what will show! (Funny enough- that's what the sermon topic ended up being on!)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


My need for simplicity has drawn me to get rid of all of my mismatched collection of dishes. We had a garage sale last weekend and I sold them all...and everything that didn't sell is on it's way to goodwill. Instead, I purchased a 16 piece set of Corelle (aren't they pretty?) that has a 3 year break/chip warranty attached. Good luck, I say, in this boy house. Can I tell you the joy of being able to wash all of my dishes in one load with space left over? Space, people! Ahhhh, a good feeling indeed.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Lofty Challenge

I've decided to slow things down a little. I have no idea how, mind you, except to just start over. Have you ever felt that life was passing you by as you stood there and watched...confused and amazed? I don't want to just "live it out" day after day! I want my life, experiences, and interaction to have eternal significance!

This morning I woke up at 6am , washed my face and had breakfast by myself. I read my Bible, a passage in Samuel and a chapter of "Passionate Housewives, Desperate for God". I laced up my running shoes went out for a 'Good morning sunshine' walk with the Lord. I prayed aloud as I enjoyed the gorgeous sun creeping up over the horizon for about fifteen minutes. I came back home, made the hubby's lunch and greeted the children as they came down with sleepy faces for breakfast.

After lots of hugs and kisses for daddy's goodbye, we settled in for cheerios, juice and Bible time. I've decided to work on character traits one by one through Galatians's fruit of the Spirit passage. This week we are focusing on kindness. One of the major parts of my own character that I desire to be changed is my attitude toward my children; that of kindness and gentleness. Everything I am sharing with them is in an effort to remind myself on a daily basis! I want them to not only do as I say, but also to do as I do!

We are still a television-free family and I am loving it. I have, however, found other mindless activities to fill the void and my vision is for that to change as well. Last night I went to our local library and spent over an hour filling my basket with books from the education section; both for my children to enjoy as well as myself. I have eleven books that I want to get through in 60 days. A lofty challenge indeed. Some looked good on the shelf, but I surmise that I will only browse them as they will turn out not to be as exciting as once anticipated. Nonetheless, there are a few that will receive my undivided attention.

The biggest summer challenge is that I want my oldest (turning five next month) to be able to read by the time we start out our kindergarten studies this upcoming fall. I've been reading some really great books and am encouraged that we can do it! Now, just to discipline myself to make the time! I covet your prayers as I make some radical changes for our family!

Monday, April 21, 2008

She's BAaaack!

Wanted to post some updated pictures of the family! We attended a 50th wedding anniversary celebration of some very dear friends this past weekend. It was nice to catch up with extended family and friends.

Mommy and the boys pose for some pictures!

Little one has his eyes on the cake...

This is my mama and daddy! Aren't they cute? They just celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary!

Ahh, yes... the whole clan! My youngest is constantly moving... see the blur? Couldn't get the child to sit still. :)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

No So Much

I am not doing well at staying away! Yesterday was bad, but today is worse! I'm trying to prepare for the garage sale and am getting all kinds of emails regarding my ad and such! I must admit that I have not checked the news, youtube, or any blogs...until right now. I just had to add the picture that I purchased for my running scrapbook! See Angelena run!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Say "Good-Bye"

I'm going to try a little experiment. I'm going to try to give up the internet for one week. Can it be done? I'm not so sure. I find that as a stay-at-home mother- this is one outlet I have to the outside world. Nonetheless, I must find out if it can be done. No blogging; no news; no web surfing; no email. NO EMAIL? Ok- maybe a little email. A girl can't get rid of all her lifelines!

I'll be back next week sometime. We're preparing for a garage sale this weekend, family reunion on Sunday and I absolutely must get back on schedule with homeschooling! So, I have plenty to keep me busy. See you all soon!


Sunday, April 13, 2008


It is done! Yesterday I did another 1/2 marathon and actually beat my previous time! We had great weather- 40's, overcast, and very windy! I consider this good running weather because it kept me wide awake the whole time! I started out with some friends, but ended up running by myself after about four miles to keep up with "my pace". I have found that if I stress myself to keep up with someone else or hang back to "stay" with them- it throws me all out of whack and I don't end up finishing very strong. I enjoyed my run and especially the race route- we ran mostly through campus areas and had a lot of the college crowd cheering us on. Enjoy the pictures! My next challenge is preparing for the Susan G. Komen triathlon in eight weeks!

"Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of Heaven and Earth"!

Race morning from my front door! Isn't the sky beautiful? I was reminded of the Glory of our Creator God in abundance yesterday!

Race prep! I always have to lay out everything the night before or I'll forget something the next day! Don't you love how color-coordinated I am? :)

Yes, I look ridiculous. Husband was kind enough to get a 'blog-shot' for me the morning of the race around 6:30am. The camera wasn't working for him later, so this is the only pic I have! (He did get me running across the finish line via video camera- so will have to load that one up soon!)

The medal! Of course, it would have been nice to get a pic of me actually wearing the lovely award, but I was sick as a dog after the race. This happens every time! I have no idea why. Well, at least this time I didn't end up in the med tent.

Pre-race. My girlfriends and I are super excited about running! A nice runner guy among us was kind enough to take our picture with my cell phone camera. We were wearing our trash bags, but decided that wasn't really 'Kodak' material.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

And the Winner Is... Me!

Just wanted to post quickly about my exciting news! I was the winner of this delicious giveaway from Heather's Brain! Thank you Heather!
Okay- everybody go and check out her beautiful blog and enjoy all those gorgeous spring colors!

Coffee, Candles & Couches (T.E.M. Part II)

Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. "It is written," he said to them, " 'My house will be called a house of prayer,' but you are making it a 'den of robbers.''

Matthew 21:12-13

The image of the church is radically changing. (If you have not yet read my first article regarding the Emerging Church, please click here.) There has been a huge shift- do you recognize it? Although this post is directed more at the cultural changes of the church, it is inclusive of the ideals at the heart emergent movement.

My mother tells me of 'once upon a time', years ago when the greatest debate was rather or not to allow a small kitchenette to be built in the basement of the church. There was great concern that the church building remain a place of reverence and respect; a house of prayer- without giving any opening to compromise. Today, however, kitchens are commonplace and seen as a necessity to a complete worship center; the great concern now is what color the tile should be and if stainless steel is in the budget.

But it hasn't stopped there... In fact it has quickly accelerated into something much more. The Mega-Church model offers us gift shoppes, bookstores, Deli-cafe's, coffee lounges, community centers and movie theaters. It's one stop shopping right in your own backyard! Have we adapted too much to the culture around us? What is the purpose in providing all these services within the church doors? Community and fellowship? A seeker sensitive atmosphere that will bring in the unsaved in droves through the front doors?

Although there is nothing inherently wrong with coffee, candles and couches, I find that we have been introduced slowly to this new wave of church "must haves" and the need for the Holy Spirit and the conviction that He brings is "old news". ' As a church we've been seduced into worshiping a God whose primary values are comfort and blessing. Yet the God of Scripture promises us only discipline and sacrifice. While we seek after blessing and protection from pain, pain and persecution are exactly what he promises us'.(1)

Consider the international and persecuted church for a moment... Savings pages of scripture ripped from the Bible and passed from family to family; secretly meeting in darkened rooms for a fear-gripped time of fellowship in Christ; knowing that their conversation could mean dire consequences for their business and family; separation, imprisonment and even death for their unfaltering faith and declaration in Jesus. He is the one they ultimately cling to. He is the one they are willing to die for.

It is not my intent to promote legalism either. I do not believe that sitting on a hard backless wooden bench makes your time with God deeper and more spiritual then if you were to be praising him on a plush lazy-boy recliner. Hiding in an upper room in fear of your life does not assume you are holier than those who meet in the freedom of Sunday church service. Wearing a suit and tie does not make your time with God more meaningful than if you were to wear your favorite pair of denim duds. Meeting on Sunday for worship as opposed to a Saturday night is not necessary for salvific assurance.

It is, however, the mentality of the emergent model that gives me reason to pause and question theses cultural changes within the church. Many churches have adopted this 'comfort' model with the hope to bring more people through the door, but have not yet embraced the philosophy and theology that accompanies it. I warn you though...they will eventually. If the Holy Spirit isn't enough to bring people in (through evangelism of your congregation); then why would comfortable lounges keep them there? When life gets hard and burdens overwhelm in abundance...they will have realized that Jesus doesn't make "life easier" and will take him off... just like an old bulky coat that is uncomfortable.

Why the changes? Why is it 'out with the old and in with the new' the only way? Why must new convert hopefuls be teased and tempted with cappuccinos and candle-lit services? Why are we wetting the appetite of the next generation for the pleasures of self and the desire of entertainment? This is absolutely opposed to scripture and the nature of God's spirit!
1 Cor. 2:4-5 says, "My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power."

If we continue to embrace the influential culture of this fallen world in our churches, there will soon be no difference between us. And hasn't God called us to be set apart? To be 'in the world', but not 'of the world'?

Consider the Apostle Paul as he writes in 2 Cor 11 "
Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches. "

Are we preparing the church for the last days in a stand against the toils of Satan and the true hardships of following Christ? Or have we tickled their ears with sensual sermons and visions of a life full of blessings and prosperity? Our joy as believers lies in the knowledge of eternity with Christ, not in this pleasures of this ever changing world! Let us follow the absolute standard of the Bible that is always the same! Praise the Lord; He never changes and His mercy will never fail!


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Update in Pictures

I don't remember a time this year that I've felt as busy and overwhelmed as the past seven days have been. Craziness, friends, pure craziness!

Okay- so first...I sold my van. That was an adventure in itself. I posted an ad to a local buying/selling site with all the details and pictures and have done nothing but field calls and emails 13 hours a day. People would promise to come...I'd prepare all the documents and make sure we were home...and then they wouldn't show. Aaargh.

My life was kind of on hold every day- it's a good thing we considered this 'spring break' because we sure didn't get any school work done! Well, a really nice gentleman came last evening and purchased it for their family of seven. Whew, so glad that it is done! (**this just in... I just received a call from the buyer that when I filled the sale amount on the title I added a "dollar sign" that looked like a '1' to the agency- so they added an additional $1o00 to the sales prices and charged them double the taxes! Aaaahhh! So, now I have to go back to the title agency with the buyer and have it notarized AGAIN confirming that she was being honest. What has the world come to?***)

In the meantime we made the decision to purchase a new vehicle to replace the one for sale. It was about the easiest transaction ever! Lots of footwork, lots of calls, lots of time- but we feel so blessed! We found a wonderful family that gave us a FANTASTIC price for their Town and Country with super low miles! Truly, a blessing from the Lord. I'm not a materialistic person, but wanted to show you the picture...ain't it 'perty?

We had a 'celebration' dinner for our vehicle achievement last night and my mom helped the boys make party hats. Isn't that the cutest? They look like little popes. Ha!

The weather has been gorgeous the mid 70's almost all week. I love that my GREEN grass is back! My youngest was enjoying the search for bugs with his jar.

It was so nice yesterday we pulled out the spring/summer clothing totes up from the basement! Capri's, sandals, shorts and tee's! Hoorah! I decided to wear a pair of sandals last night and ran down to the basement to grab them. I was in such a hurry that I fell up the stairs wearing them. My left ankle/shin is super bruised and slightly swollen. It hurts so bad to walk. How am I gonna run?

Speaking of that- my 1/2 marathon is just days away! How's that for changing the subject?! To be honest, I haven't given it much thought lately! I don't know how mentally prepared I am, but I suppose at this point... 'it is what it is'. Don't get me wrong- I'm looking forward to it, but training for a spring race is sooooo different then training for a fall one. The weather has been completely unpredictable and that really throws a hitch into things. I feel pretty prepared, however, and it should be fun! (Weather is calling for that could be interesting!)

I hope you all are having a wonderful week! I'm looking forward to posting more about the emergent movement later in the week. I hope it's informative! I am also going to be doing a FREE spring giveaway in stay tuned! Lots to come, my dear bloggy friends!

Enjoy your week!

In Christ's faithfulness,


Monday, April 7, 2008

The Emergent Movement: Part One

Faced with such opposition and the pressure it brings, postmodernism is a form of intellectual pacifism that, at the end of the day, recommends backgammon while the barbarians are at the gate. It is the easy, cowardly way out that removes the pressure to engage alternative conceptual schemes, to be different, to risk ridicule, to take a stand outside the gate. But it is precisely as disciples of Christ, even more, as officers in his army, that the pacifist way out is simply not an option. However comforting it may be, postmodernism is the cure that kills the patient, the military strategy that concedes defeat before the first shot is fired, the ideology that undermines its own claim to allegiance. And it is an immoral, coward’s way out that is not worthy of a movement born out of the martyrs’ blood.

J. P Moreland

Have you noticed lately that the topic of much debate in the church is whether or not absolute truth matters? Whether or not the Bible is free of error? It has been said that as believers, we should be assured that our faith is true, but that we can't be certain of it; or that belief of the virgin birth is not essential to our Christianity; or lack of a literal Hell; inability to accept a six literal day creation; the list goes on and on.

God has given us his Word, the Holy Spirit, the Law written on our conscience and conviction to show Himself to us. We have not blindly accepted the truth of the Bible, but rather it's truth has been revealed to us as we search, read and witness first hand in creation. Until we are in eternity we will always be searching to know more about God and his nature, but to continue to question the foundation of our faith gives proof that it has not yet been fully embraced by the seeker.

The Emergent movement is quickly creeping in the churchwith ideology that absolutely conflicts to the foundations of our faith and knowledge of truth. I am going to take the next few posts to give you a background of what exactly the basis of this moment is founded upon, the influential leaders in our culture and the problematic theology in the context of scripture.

The emerging church (also known as the emergent church movement) is a Christian movement of the late 20th and early 21st century whose participants seek to engage postmodern people, especially the unchurched and post-churched.

Dr. R. Todd Mangum, Associate Professor of Theology and Dean of Faculty at Biblical Seminary, describes it this way:

“Emergent” is a loosely knit group of people in conversation about and trying experiments in forwarding the ministry of Jesus in new and different ways, as the people of God in a post-Christian context. From there, wide diversity abounds. “Emergents” seem to share one common trait: disillusionment with the organized, institutional church as it has existed through the 20th century (whether fundamentalist, liberal, megachurch, or tall-steeple liturgical)."

Any text such as the Bible takes on a personal meaning as they experience it, but it has no objective, authoritative meaning such as authorial intent to distinguish a right from wrong interpretation. A plurality of Scriptural interpretations is acknowledged in the emerging church movement. Emergent Village leader Tony Jones says “We must stop looking for some objective Truth that is available when we delve into the text of the Bible.”

Marcus Borg, for example, notes that individuals who have read the same Bible "literally" may have different accounts of the message of Christianity, which are often mutually exclusive. Borg claims that many aspects of people's lives, including their political beliefs and their surrounding culture can provide a "lens" that can distort the Bible and influence which parts of the Bible they take literally, and which parts they may ignore. The postmodern relativism which predominates the emerging church movement causes participants to believe there are radically diverse perspectives within "Christianity" that are valuable for humanity to progress toward truth as they understand it and a better resulting relationship with what they understand to be God. They believe this non-dogmatism coupled with a liberal social agenda will facilitate harmony with the rest of God's creation (other people and the rest of the universe).

The previous portion of italicized text can be found in full context at: . I think that you can get a very firm grasp of someone's theology based on their interpretation (or lack thereof) of absolute truth. Do you understand the depth of what this group is proposing? We'll explore affect on the modern day the in the church in Part II.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

My Day in Pictures

The boys made hats. Super cute, aren't they? Oh, and they love that basketball hoop.

We are putting my van up for sale. All I did was answer craigslist ads all day long!

Maternity clothes must go on eBay! A nice lot of summer items, don't you think? Anybody need some cute S/M capri's?

The joy of potty training. Mr. Big Boy mastered the art of the potty in four days. By night 3 he was staying dry through all the waking hours, naps, and bedtime until morning. Can you believe that? It certainly had nothing to do with me- he's a man on a mission! Yeah, lil' Bub!