Friday, July 25, 2008

I Used To Hate Parallel Parking

As you can see in our home videos, my husband and I have been taking parking instructions. We really got the nack of it, so my daughter Deliverance learned to do us one better. Isn't she good?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Air Conditioning

I think he's trying to tell us something.
We like our house cool in the summer, but I don't think it's THAT cool.
Scooby is sensitive to heat AND cold, so he's not an outdoor dog. I guess it wasn't "just right" for him, poor baby!

He seemed more comfy after I tucked him in.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

My Shamrock Plant

I have never been able to keep houseplants alive for very long. I had given up on trying for a few years when I decided I wanted to have a Shamrock plant, also known as Iron Cross, or Oxalis. Some people call it a good luck plant, but shamrocks only have three leaves and is simply a symbol of Ireland. It's the four-leaf clover that is known for giving good luck, if you're superstitious.

I bought it before St Patrick's Day and divided it in half to share it with my friend Bonnie. It looked pretty bad for a long time but I kept it moist, misted, fertilized and in front of the window (indirect light). It not only perked up, but about the time that my houseplants usually start dying, it THRIVED. It's practically a small bush.

Hmmm, I wonder if it's really a weed, now those I can't seem to kill.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

A Wild Time

I wish I had taken pictures last Friday night, but I forgot to take the camera out of Steve's backpack that he took to work that night. It was his 6th 12 hr night, and 7 more scheduled (with a couple days off in between) because of people taking summer vacation weeks. Oh well, he will have his vacation weeks too.

Deliverance was shooting away with her camera, though. Deliverance, Josh and my friend Linda came over for dinner (Josh grilled, mmm). As usual Stevie stuck to Josh's side like glue the whole night. Then we went to the almost empty Walgreen parking lot for a perfect view of the city fireworks. It's easier than fighting traffic, searching for a space to sit or to park. Turns out, there were lots of other people setting off firework displays around the area that we could see from there too. What a show!

After that, we went back to our own street to set some off. This one Stevie is holding was the biggest one. As it was going off the residue rained down on us, but a lot of it missed those of us who were standing under our tree. There weren't very many mosquitoes either. The next day Deliverance said the city recycling bin for paper was overflowing with fireworks packaging.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Who's In Control?

The things the Lord allows to come into our lives don't seem to be so lovingly filtered at times, but we as His children can trust in the fact that nothing in our lives is unnoticed by Him, or is too great to be under His control.
Psalm 139:16 says that God not only knew how He would form us, but also that He already decided how each of our days would be lived, He fashioned them Himself beforehand.
Ps. 56:11 also says that nothing can happen to me that God doesn't allow. If our Creator is more powerful than the Evil one, is He also capable to be in control of everything that He allows to come into my life? And that being true, then it must be for a reason, and I really CAN thank Him for everything as 1 Thes.5:18 says, because He is worthy of my trust. And because He says everything is working together for our good
An old saying always pops into my head whenever I ask God "Why?!". "Faith isn't faith until it's the hardest thing to do". And sometimes it just seems too hard to do. How can anyone feel like praising God when you've just lost a child, or your spouse abandons you, or your life is slipping away from an unknown disease, or your sons were taken away to serve in a terrorist regime? How can we feel like thanking God for His perfect plan, when it isn't the plan that you want? Everyone who searches for this answer probably has their own way of finding it. The book of Job is where many of us go to hear God declare His sovereignty in the midst of devastation. We all have our favorite chapters of comfort, and verses proving His trustworthiness. Also, choosing songs of praise to keep in my mind helps me stay focused on Him. In my case, being blessed with a husband who's always ready to comfort and encourage is my biggest source of help. Sometimes all we can hang onto is the grace he miraculously gives us to endure. But I know my human nature has trouble staying in the "strong tower" that is our loving Father - pro.19:10 - who offers all the things we rely on.

Daniel 5:23 says that God holds our breath in His hands and owns all our ways. As my pastor said tonight, if God knows how many hairs we have our head, doesn't that show us how intimately He planned our days?
So, when we use all possible resources to protect our child, our marriage, our health - are we also able to praise Him for shaping our life His way, when He doesn't do what we ask? Depending on the degree of our mourning, it can honestly take some of us a while to even think of praising His wisdom.

I am by no means saying we should always be happy, or that we're sinful when we struggle with our faith. God's word does say that we are to mourn with each other, encourage, comfort, and provide for physical and emotional needs. That proves that He knows we will often have struggles, heartbreak, persecution, fear, anger, etc, and that we also need the encouragement of knowing that the family of believers will take time to remember us in prayer. Even though He gave us the Holy Spirit to help us, our relationships with each other was Jesus' concern when He washed His disciples feet and instructed us to do the same.

That's one of the things that makes us peculiar (set apart) from those who aren't His sheep. We have a hope, a peace that comes from trusting God with the reins. And though I keep taking the reins away from Him, that doesn't alter His control, it only alters my faith in His control.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Throwback Thursday

When we were first married in 1974, a cheap place to get away for 1/2 a day was a small amusement park near us called Enchanted Forest. It's been gone for years now, as it was already old back then, but we have a few pictures to remember, like this one.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

"O Canada"

While thinking of our country's upcoming Independence Day celebration, I noticed on my calendar that today is Canada Day. I also needed something to blog about since I've been blog-dead for so long.

I don't know any native Canadians, unless there is one whose blog I visit and don't realize it's in Canada. I do know a transplanted Canadian, whose blog I started visiting because of my daughter Deliverance. Erin and her husband Eric were very helpful to Deliverance and Josh when they were getting ready to move to Scotland a few years ago. You can read about that here. If you click on Erin's link you will see that it is also her birthday. Congratulations, Erin, on celebrating your birthday on a national holiday. Also, her little girl Kate turned 4 yesterday. 2 cakes sound good to me!