Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Grandma Pinky and Morgan came to visit

Billy's Mom came to visit us last weekend. They call her Pinky. She was a twin who was ALWAYS dressed in pink... so the name just stuck. She is awesome. Pinky came to visit us with Billy's niece Morgan who took 3 days off of school (which means a ton of homework in 5th grade) to come and see us. We were so blessed. Pinky is a woman with a plan. I know when she comes to visit that she already has an idea of what she wants to do and we get it done. I love it because there is not a lot of hemming and hawing about what needs to happen... she lays it all out. So, when they came to DRO we spent Saturday shopping in Farmington where she loved buying the kids their winter coats and pajamas. Then we went to the pumpkin patch afterward... which was totally fun. Thursday she hit the Rec Center... Friday night she made an awesome pot roast and squash and super yummy food... it was SOOO good. Sunday she took all three kids on the train and met us in Silverton in the afternoon. Monday her and Morgan hit Trimble Hot Springs and then flew home. She told me next time we'll all drive to Ouray and stay at a hotel there and hit the hotsprings. We had a great time. I love it when people come all the way to DRO to visit us. It is so nice to invite people into our life here. It's nothing like the big city... but it's our home and we dig it lots.

My playdate with Kale and Kate

I heard a nasty rumor that my good friend Jill was sick on Sunday. So I called her to see how she was doing. She called me back and left me a message. She sounded so bad. I had never ever heard her voice so low and scratchy. She said it hurt so bad she could not eat for 3 or 4 days! Ugh. I just kept thinking... oh Lord please heal her. I had Tuesday off and asked my husband to check the weather. It was supposed to be 70 degrees. I pictured Jill in her house with her two preschool aged children and her new baby... I pictured her trying to feel better during a busy day with three kids. It was not going to happen for her. So I asked her if I could take Kale and Kate on a playdate with Toby on Tuesday. We would go to my house for lunch, play with Toby's toys and Toby then to the park, then back to my house for rest time and more playtime.

I have to say that her children were perfectly behaved for me. They were great. I loved hanging out with them. I loved how much my son loves them and I am so blessed by the entire family. Here is a picture from our day (I am having problems loading multiple pics). We seriously had a blast.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

That Man of mine.. and our communication nightmares

Ha! I think this post is great. My friend Jill shared a great post about how sometimes the communication in marriage is so important and sometimes so hard. Bill and I have been married 8 years and we still sometimes do not have a clue what we are saying to each other. It is like we are speaking two different languages. It just impresses on me more how badly we need in God in all of it. To remind us about mercy, grace and love and that even if I have no idea what Bill is talking about... we both have God gently nudging us to be more like him. Forgiving.

One example I have of these communication things is when Bill and I were going over finances. We were talking about how to work our budget or look at numbers. Bill is VERY detailed. He is more concerned about our accounts being reconciled to the penny and I am overall concerned about the big picture. Money in... money out... how it looks at a macro level. We were seriously trying to talk about how to plan for our budget and how to develop it and we both were explaining our perspectives and I am not lying to you. He was speaking English and I had NO IDEA what he was saying!!!! We both just kept repeating ourselves and neither one of us knew what we were talking about. After about 3 times of repeating ourselves to one another... we both just started laughing... and I said, are you speaking english because what you are saying is not making sense to me. It was hilarious. We ended up just dropping the subject and moving on to another topic. It was so funny. We are wired completely different.

Bill was given some marital advice that I don't think has served us well in our marriage. Someone told him when we were married the best phrase he needed to know was "yes honey or yes dear". Well, now he has the "yes dear syndrome" and it has brought us to many a fork in the road where we had to grin and bear it as well. I will say, Billy... can you please stop at the bank and deposit this money... or can you please make an appt for such and such or Bill can you please pick up some stuff at City Market. And thankfully, my wonderful husband with all the good intentions in the world tells me, "Yes Dear" full well knowing there is no way he has time to stop at the grocery store, call to make appts or deposit money into the bank account. So when I ask him if he completed said task.. he has to confess he did not. I have impressed upon him that honesty is the best policy and if he cannot complete said task to PLEASE let me know and I will do it. I love my husband and understand he is busy, but my pleading for him to help me he feels like he will let me down if he says, "NO." He wants to be my hero so he agrees to everything I need.

Men are awesome. My husband is awesome. He loves me no matter what and we are learning to navigate this life together. We will never be perfect, have all the answers or be able to appease each other 100% but we can look to God in all of it and say... "DEAR LORD HELP ME" and full well know that he has our backs totally and completely. God definatley has sense of humor in the differences between boys and girls. We just need to keep on laughing. :-)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Another facebook post... I'm fired up

Titled: What is happening to this country?

I know this is an emotionally heated election and the politics of it all is killing me... but I just talked to a friend who informed me that the new "one dollar coins" are edited and they have taken "In God we Trust" off of the dollar. Regardless of your political opinion... regardless of your faith preference...what the heck? When my daughter was born... it was the moment in my life that I realized that I was given the most precious unebelievable gift. The gift of a new life. It was not MY efforts or MY mojo, MY good looks, or My good behavior that created that life. It was something so much bigger than anything I could ever wrap my brain around. I could go on and on about the human body and how intricate it is and amazing and special that there is no way a "BIG BANG" cosmic explosion or biological meltdown created the wonderful miracle of life. Who designed our feelings of love, intimacy, friendship, sensuality? Was that all just a fluke too? When I look into my daughter's eyes or listen to my son breathe and grow... I am trusting God 100%. I trust that God gave me these lives. I trust he loves me so specifically I cannot even begin to undestand what that means. He gave me desire an passion, he gave me hobbies and friends, he gives me the air I breathe and every beat of my heart. I trust that he put me in my parent's life for a specific reason I trust that he provides all my needs.... so why then is it such a big deal for us to talk about God? Don't mention "God" in school. Don't mention "God" at work because you could offend someone. If you talk to your friends about God your considered a bible "thumper" or religious... whatever. This country is so flipping egocentric I cannot even stand it. We live in a world of trusting yourself. We can't even turst others let alone trust God. The media and society communicates messages of how COOL WE are... how much better WE can be.... how much more money WE can get, more sex we can have, drugs WE can do.... Being dysfunctional and rehab'ed is cool. Having issues with porn and addictions is sexy. Exploit those who struggle with it, cling to the stories of those in pain. Get angry because WE aren't getting our way. It's all a load of crap. You were designed and created and built by a God who every day decides to let you live another day because you have stuff to do on this earth. Good stuff, good plans, plans to help others be good to others and make a difference for others. All the while TRUSTING GOD!Our sin and our focus on ourselves is what we don't like to look at as a society. We are wrong, we aren't perfect, we do make mistakes, we're not beautiful all the time, and that is why we NEED God and we need to begin to undesrtand what it means to TRUST God.I have watched teens and youth battle their own hearts and minds because they know the truth. They feel in thier spirit that God created them all in a special and unique way. Deep down they know they are loved. But our media and society confirms and communicates to them that what they believe is wrong. There is a conflict in their hearts because they don't know what to believe. The media communicates to everyone to be the masters of their own universe by having money, power, sex and greed. Special and precious is not sexy enough for this nation of ours. I have seen the pain in a young person's eyes when they think they are not good enough because they don't encompass all of that, they are humble, quiet, loving, sensitive, broke... and they feel worthless they don't see what God's so sad.This nation needs to take the blinders off and notice that it is a bunch of crap we don't trust God. It's really not about the coin. It's so many little ways we discredit the one who created us. We really should be ashamed of ourselves... but oh wait.... I forgot... we ARE perfect there's no shame in that... right?(sigh)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Miracles happen and happened to us - Our Cardboard Testimony

I posted this note on my facebook account. Many of my friends do not understand our faith or why I have become so "religious." My prayer is that they read this and have a better understanding. Read on...

My husband Bill was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes about a month ago. Right now he is treating it with medication and a major change in diet. This diagnosis has been difficult for him. We were happy to find out at a routine doctor appointment rather than him having some kind of horrible diabetic medical problem. The good news is we know about it and can change our lives to make sure he's maintains good health. This diagnosis presented a lot of things for my husband. He loves sugar. He was a Mountain Dew boy all the way. So when you have to quit cold turkey on those sugary treats that bring you joy... it can be frustrating. One other side effect of the diabetes was his vision. When he dropped his sugar levels from the 500 range where they had been to a normal range... the capillaries in your eyes get messed up. So he could not even read the Nutrition labels or small print like that. Mind you, he's had 20/20 vision his whole life, so again major adjustments were to be made. We bought some contacts and that helped him during the day. Bill and I have been attending a church in Colorado here for about 3 years. I had never been a "church" person ever in my life. Church bored the crap out of me and it just seemed to ritualistic. I understood there was a God and I understood that Jesus died on the cross for me, but both Bill and I wanted to know that on a deeper level. We wanted to know what that meant for us in our day to day lives. As we pursued a closer relationship with the God who made us... we found our church and an amazing family of people who are also pursuing their own spiritual journey with God. The church we go to believes that the Bible is truth. Regardless of what media and society says... I believe it too. However, it does not say in the Bible to use what you know and what you believe to judge, manipulate or undermine others. My favorite commandment in the Bible is when Jesus told people this: "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'[b] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" Matthew 22: 36That is what my church and my church family has taught me. That loving others is the best and truest form of understanding a personal relationship with God. It is not about "church" or "religion" it is about the basics of life and that is to love others and love God. It's a very personal journey. When you pursue it... supernaturally God changes your heart and fills you with sustainable joy. Not fleeting, but something that sticks with you. It is an amazing thing and something worth pondering. I am digressing... back to our miracle. Billy has been very frustrated about not being able to see... he has been back tot he eye doctor 2 times to change his prescription to so he can read small print. He works with computers at work and he looks up parts and inventory thing so not being able to see has been debilitating for him. It is hard to see my husband so frustrated. Last Sunday, we had a special dinner at our church our Pastor prayed over my husband and annointed him with oil. We had tons of people standing around him praying. I have witnessed prayers for others and healing for others... so I was really hoping our prayers would be answered in some way. I did know God could cure Billy with one mighty touch. I was excited to see what he might do when we prayed on Bill's behalf. The very next day, when we were getting ready for bed and watching Sports Center... Bill had his contacts off and told me... I can read the TV. Now mind you.. he always reads the small print at the bottom looking at EVERY game that is going on and memorizes all scores and such... so this small print is important to him too. So being able to read these scores was the reassurance he needed to know God was working in his life. I believe that God knew my husband's greatest frustration and healed his sight instantly. It was the confirmation I needed that when we seek God he will meet us right where we are. He cares specifically for us. And knows our greatest need. So with that testimony, I would like to encourage all my friends to remember. Whether or consider yourself "religious" or not. Say a prayer today to the God who created you and has an awesome plan for your life... and specifically ask him to meet you where you are. He loves you and so do I!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

My husband Billy...

A long time ago, before there were motor vehicles...and telephones and electricity Billy and I met on a country road near an apple orchard(just kidding). We actually met in a small town bar. :)

This October 28, 2008, Bill and I will be married 8 years. He was a mystery boy who just dropped into Winona Minnesota. I was in my 4th year of college... having bartended the entire time with a bunch of the guys on Bill's softball team. He walked in one early evening when I was hanging out with some of my girlfriends, not knowing at that time what a "God moment" was, it is the only way I can describe the first time I saw him. Winona Minnesota is a small town with a whole bunch of churches and about 2x's the amount of small bars. Being a bartender in a popluar bar with cheap beer, I knew everyone in town. If I didn't know people's names I knew someone they knew. But on the day he walked into the bar, he stood out so predominantly from everyone else. It was almost like the background around him became fuzzy and Billy was totally in focus. He had super blonde hair after playing softball most of the summer, very tan and stunning to me. He was definately "prince" material. I remember saying to my friend... who is THAT GUY? Man is he cute! I've never been one to be passive or quiet (for those who know me well) , so my friends and I immediately welcomed him, sat and chatted with him to get the low down on who he was where he was from and what the heck he was doing in Winona. He told me his name was Bill... and I said... "Oh... Billy." He said, "No. My name is Bill." I told him he had to be kidding the fact he was from a small town of one thousand people in Iowa he had white blonde hair and a farmer tan... he was totally Billy to me. My friend Billy.

What I loved about him was how laid back and non "dramatic" he was. He answered questions truthfully, there was much truth in his eyes and peace to his nature. I was really happy to get to know him and found being with him a ton of fun. Our first official "date" we made some steaks on a little grill at his house. He tells me now that he knew he "dug" me when he decided to go buy himself some new silverware and plates so we could eat on nice dinnerware. How sweet! We also went to the apple festival in LaCrosse Wisconsin where he bought me a bucket of beer (very loving expression in Wisconsin) it was a blast. But the moment I really knew I was "in" with Bill was when he let me drive his prized light blue 1970 something Chevy Nova. We began what I can call a long friendship, courtship and a really fun wedding/reception.

When I look back on how God orchestrated our meeting and our relationship, I am blown away. Every anniversary Billy and I have we like to look back at our life and talk about all we have accomplished together. We glory in the fact that we are a team. No matter what life throws at us, no matter what our mistakes are throughout the year, we put them in the past, thank God for all we have done and were blessed with and look forward to another year as each other's best friend and team mate. I could not think of anyone else on this planet who understands me more than my husband, who is more patient and understanding. He works hard and understands the balance between work and family. I am so glad I met him, I am so glad he walked in that bar and came to Winona on a whim. I am so glad God sent him to me to be my husband. I can't wait for the next 8 years and what we have to look forward together. Thanks Billy. I love you.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Elected officials... can we get some better ones?

Wisdom is important. Wisdom about a lot of things. The thing I would like to say I am pursuing mostly in terms of wisdom is my own personal relationship with Jesus who died for me and a God who loves me. It is the thing I am studying the hardest. When I put my trust and my life in front of the God who created me, it is my best decision.

But to make an informed and confident exciting choice in the elections lately really makes me sad. I am beginning to read more, search more and gain more information about the candidates. I have to weed through truth and opinion. I talk to many people about all of their emotional reasons for voting for either one. I know who I am going to vote for, I really want to be well informed though.

In the past, I believe that media and mass communication had integrity and ethic. I believe we don't have it anymore. Sensationalism and whatever makes the most money has won the battle when it comes to media. Sex sells, then write about it...gossip sells, then tell everyone... people's mistakes brings home the bacon... then exploit them. Who cares what the ramifications of those decisions are... we're making money.

I was a Mass Communication major in college I have a B.A in that respect... and the thing I remember the most about what I was taught is that what you "report" in a mass context must be truthful, based on fact (not rumor) and have a ton of evidence to support your articles. Get the facts and write about them. End of story. I am by no means saying the media should not print things that we should know about upcoming elected presidential candidates. I think we should know some of the things that aren't so pretty, but I think they should print them in an unbaised manner followed by their supporting evidence. I see what they report... and it's not always unbiased or supported by anything but rhetoric and fancy talk.

The past couple of elections I have not been fueled or excited to go to the polls. I am honored that we get to vote for our president. I am honored I live in a country where we have that freedom. I am happy we have our military in place who will stand up for those very specific rights and our forefathers decisions were based on religious freedom.

But I would really like one day to go to the polls with two candidates fighting for the presidency... in which I am proud of both of them. Whether they were Democrat or Republican... they were good people. Not proud in a pat in the back kind of way, but when you look at their lives, they are a mix of the left and the right. They value life, they don't "play God" and judge others, they've worked hard, they value families. They love their spouses and families and they can give credibility to politics again. They are a straight shooter. They don't mess around. I would like someone who REALLY is looking out for this awesome country we live in... but has expectatins of us as well. I want someone who will make positive prayerful decisions that protect our freedoms... peace out friends...