Monday, April 28, 2008

Movies: Enchanted & I Am Legend

Loved it. This is the 2nd time I've watched it, and it's still just as fun. I love fairy tales, grew up on 'em. I read all the color fairy tale books, (Lilac, Purple, Yellow, etc.), and LOVED them. And I love the idea of taking the fairy tale world and turning it on its' ear like this movie does so well..

I Am Legend
We actually watched this first and then I insisted on watching something else to make sure I was okay... 'Legend' was dark. Excellent as far as I was concerned, but very dark. I'm still processing this one, so I can't really comment on it. I can certainly see why it wasn't popular in the U.S. though. We're way too into our happy endings to be happy with this one..


I've been talking to my 4 year, Deborah, for about a year now about accepting Jesus into your heart. And she prayed the prayer tonight. I got to pray the big prayer with her- the 'I want Jesus to come into my heart' one.
We've talked about how our hearts get dirty and nasty with all the bad things that we do- lying, disobeying, taking things, hurting each other... And how we can never, ever clean the bad things off our heart. That the only way to get our heart clean is to ask Jesus to come into our lives and clean our heart. That Jesus died and when He died, He took all of our sins away. And that we only have to ask Him to clean our heart and He will, 'cuz He promised He would.
I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she prayed this prayer tonight. No, she doesn't understand all of the ramifications and all the rest of what it entails. But she does understand the dirty heart/clean heart part. And she asked Jesus to come clean her heart and live with her forever... She does understand that He died for her, and that He loves her.
I've prayed this prayer with several people, mostly youth... I have to tell you as amazing as that is, it's not as amazing as praying it with your daughter.
Pretty incredible.
Thank you Jesus for Your amazing mercy. And the graciousness with which You have bestowed this moment upon me. And that Jake got to listen on the monitor and hear our whole conversation...

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Snow!! AGAIN!!!!

It's snowing. And it's sticking on the grass. Melting on the road, but sticking on the grass. It's April 26th and it's snowing...
Please, God, NO MORE SNOW!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Drum Rehearsal

Our World Beat Concert is gonna be this Thursday and I'm a little weirded out by the whole last couple rehearsals deal. I'm used to fairly decisive leaders/directors who take control and make sure things are running smoothly. Our Drum professor is in a whole different category.... And we've only got one rehearsal left. Repeat: We've only got one rehearsal left.
We don't know exactly which pieces we're doing yet. We don't know exactly what instruments we'll each be playing for some of the pieces yet. He's got this whole 'laissez faire' approach to the concert that is kinda freaky to me. I'm not panicked or anything, but I would like to know what I'm supposed to play when lots of people are watching me. I've had to make things up on the fly, though, so I'm not just flipping out. One of the other people in the class expressed some angst to me today. I think she has the right to be frustrated with the process...
The best example of our director's approach to the concert happened today: We are working with the Fairbanks Capoeira group and they're going to do a demonstration during the concert. (Capoeira is a form of martial arts which developed during the mid-1600's among the slaves in Brazil. Music, drums and songs are an integral part of the Capoeira so that the slaves could tell their masters that they were dancing. It looks a lot like slow break-dancing, but is incredibly acrobatic.) We'll be doing 15-20 minutes of material with the group and they are choosing the songs and the order of their section. However, we don't know yet what songs they are doing, the order or what instruments we're each supposed to be playing. Our director said today, "We'll just play along and when you're ready tell someone you want to switch instruments." And he's serious! How would you feel about me telling the guitarist next Sunday that I was tired of playing my djembe and I'd like to play guitar! I admit we're all switching around & playing different instruments during most of the pieces, but I know the rhythms! I know what I do in different sections.
(This is a picture of a Capoeira music group playing berimbau and a pandeiro. The berimbau are the string instruments and the pandeiro looks like a tambourine. It's not a tambourine- the jingles are different but it does look like one. I pulled this pic off Wikipedia, but there are tons of sites out there if you're interested in finding out more about Capoeira.)


Jake's MERSA staph infection has had a relapse and he's spent a lot of time in the ER again. They're giving him IV antibiotics and he's missing more days at work...
He has a bone scan on Monday to see if the infection has gone into his bones.
God, I'm scared. Please take care of my husband. Please heal this infection and give him the strength to follow his doctor's advice even though it's hard....

Friday, April 25, 2008

Prayer Request

We're having a hard time making ends meet right now. Jake missed almost 2 weeks of work with his foot infection, and for whatever reason his sick pay hasn't come through. Our last paycheck was $36. We're okay now, but if something doesn't change soon we won't be okay.
Like most Americans we live paycheck to paycheck and we haven't had a real paycheck for almost a month now.
Please pray that we are wise with what we do have.
God help! Our money isn't going far. Please guide us and give us wisdom.

Facebook Addict

I've been spending way too much time on Facebook... I'm really enjoying the games right now, and I'm kind of allowing myself to wallow in it since I know it will end soon.
I know that when summer gets going (Farmer's Market opens, preschool ends, outdoor fun...) I'll be way too busy to all that much on-line.
I've got several games or applications on Facebook that I enjoy:
-I have a fighting bunny. Yes, this is weird. My favorite part of this game is choosing the weapons she carries into her battles. My girls love my bunny! ;) I've been slowly upgrading her weapons to achieve the perfect combo of stylishness and power. I love making sure she looks good while she's defeating other bunnies...
-I have a superhero. Yes, this is also weird. However, I LOVE the weapons I get to choose from on here- everything from Gleek (remember the Wonder Twins? Form of a bucket of water? Form of a yellow goldfish? Well, Gleek was their monkey sidekick.) to the Tardis from "Doctor Who" to a lightsaber... I have a specific goal in mind with this game: to become Wonder Woman! I've been slowly moving up the hero list- I started as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, moved up to The Punisher and right now I'm Daredevil. I like the weapons, and I'll probably have fun with them, but right now I just want to be Wonder Woman! (a childhood fantasy soon to be realized) Which is kinda funny 'cuz we didn't have a tv during the time the show ran- I knew her from the carton 'Justice League'.
-I have a racing car. This one's silly and I probably won't miss it all that much this Summer, but it is fun to choose my perfect car.
-I have a virtual pet!!! I love this! I have a little long-haired orange Tabby named Marmalade. I can feed her, play with her and train her to do things- right now she can use the litter tray and a scratching post (wish my real cat would use one!).
-I've discovered & become addicted to a couple games. Text Twirl is the first: You're given 2 minutes and a set of letters that forms a word, and you're trying to figure out the word that uses all the letters while trying to find all the words that can be made out of that specific group of letters. I'm an addict. I'm also getting good at it. World Traveler IQ is the second: You're given the challenge of trying to find a bunch of places on a world map- the other variations include a North American Challenge, a European Challenge, a US Challenge, etc.. I'm surprised by all the places I know and all the places I don't! Beth & I took Geography together in college to fill up a requirement, and we both remember a lot. It's fun to try and pull stuff back from that long ago...

Anyway, I'm gonna enjoy the time I have on Facebook right now, 'cuz there's no way this new addiction can last at the level I'm maintaining right now. When I get going gung ho on my beading and am also chasing after 2 kids during the summer break I don't know when I'll be able to get on line.
The funniest thing to me right now is that my husband has a MySpace, My Yearbook and a Facebook account... He seems to go through interests like some people go through clothes. He lasts about 3 -6 months and then he's ready to do something else. I'm glad he doesn't feel that way about me!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Snow Update

I read in the paper today that we have gotten more than 10 inches of snow fall so far in April! That's crazy! We normally get about 3 and 1/2 in April, but 10! And April's not even done yet...

God, please let the snow melt!!!! I'm so ready for Spring! I want to play outside, and go biking, and plant flowers!


The worship team at our church was invited to a potlatch today. So I got to hang out with some people from church, which rarely happens. (a potlatch is similar to a potluck, but different)
A jam session burst out- get a bunch of musicians in a room together with someone who has 4 or 5 guitars, a keyboard and a bass- guess what happens? Music!

The hardest thing about our church is the size- it is so big that it's hard to get to know people. I'm not picking on one person here. We all come in and go talk to the people we know. In fact, the church is so big that I don't even know who is a member and who is a first timer...
It was good to just spend some time with some of 'em in a non-church, non-responsibility type atmosphere.

I'm TERRIBLE at reaching out and trying to get to know people. Plus, the added weirdness of my age. I'm ANCIENT to have a 2 yr old and a 4 yr old. At least in Alaska. We've got a ton of military families, so half of the mommies are only 22... And the other half are 26 to 28. I'm 36. NOT ancient, but definitely older than the average mommy in my church. It can make it hard to connect with some of the other moms, and most of the career women have kids in their teens... So, I often end up feeling all out of place.
Wish I had a crowd I fit into! I never quite feel at home in churches. The artist thing, I guess...

Saturday, April 19, 2008


Another season of Farmer's Market starts in about a month, so I've been working like crazy.
I try to bead at least an hour a day, and most days I bead two or three.
I actually find that by sitting down to this ritual- pulling out my bead, my tray, my tools- creating an atmosphere for creativity and doing it every day- I'm more creative.
It sounds mutually exclusive- ritual, routine & creativity- It sounds like keeping a routine and steady working time would make it more difficult to be creative. But it's not true.
By having a set time to bead I force myself to work past any questions: 'what should I do? what colors do I work with? what am I making?'. Then by working past them and saying that even if I'm not sure exactly what I'm doing or if I have clear plan, I force myself to create. If I just wait until I have that magical moment of inspiration I'd only make about 10-20 things a year... Certainly not enough to pay off my bead addiction...
Creating is the magic. And even after 6 years of beading and 3 or 4 of selling, I'm still having fun. And if I'm not having fun with this it's really not worth it, 'cuz I don't make that much!
The one thing about Fairbanks is that everybody does something to get through the winter. Even if you love skiing or dogmushing, there are times when it's too cold or the snow pack is too hard. So you've got to have something to do inside. Reading, beading, scrapbooking, cooking, watching movies, playing an instrument, doing community theatre... Everybody has something they use as an escape from the weather... So most people up here will either look at a piece and say 'that's amazing! I've never seen wirework like that!' or they'll say, 'I bet I could do that, but I know how much it would take, and I don't have that much time...'

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Potato Love

Found this at Fred Meyer- Had to share-
I don't even know if I'm gonna be able to eat it, it's so fun.


It's 2:53 a.m. What am I doing up!!!?
I got my sleep all turned around over the weekend. Taking Jake to the ER totally messed me up. We were going at 2 am every night and then had to go back in at 9:30. This may not sound bad, but we weren't getting back home until 3:30 or so. And I don't just 'go to sleep' like a normal person. I seem to need some kind of very ordered ritual to get calm enough to make the move into dreamland.
Anyway, here I go, sliding back into my insomnia pattern... I sleep a bit during the day, which messed me up more. Then the next day I'm so bad off 'cuz I couldn't sleep that I have to take a nap, which means I can't go to sleep that night, but then I'm a mess....

Monday, April 14, 2008

April Snow

This is crazy!
Our snow had almost completely melted- it was almost gone!!! But over the last four or five days we've had buckets of snow.
We normally have a last snow on Easter or right around then, but it's generally a last hurrah. I've got no idea exactly what's going on, but I'm sick, sick, sick of snow. :(
The best way to tell how much snow fall we've actually had is to look at the porch railing. About five posts ago I had another picture of the snow fall. You can tell that we've had about 3 inches of snow fall in April. That may not seem like buckets, but we also had 1 day of 30's & 40's in the middle, so a lot of that original snow fall from 4 days ago had melted away...

Jake's Freaky Feet

Isn't it special?
What's really scarey is that this was not taken at the height of the horror. The red spread further up his leg and got darker while the dark red section turned even darker and more purple...
When they lanced the original wound (it's between the baby toe and next toe- it looks kinda white) the stuff that came out was dark brown! UGGH!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Cute Polar Bears

I'm as fond of cute polar bears as anyone... However, I know the truth behind the cuteness. I've got some Alaskan tales of polar bears that will curl your toes.
First, from the little town of Kotzebue:
When I lived there back in the early 80's a boy was fishing on the frozen Bering sea less than a quarter mile from shore. A polar bear smelled his catch, came and ate it while the boy ran to shore (in one big gulp, I might add; however that gulp saved the kid's life). The polar bear stayed right behind him until the boy got to one of the restaurants on First, the street right up against the shore. They look ungainly, but polar bears are FAST. The boy got away. Not so in the next story...
In the larger town of Barrow, farther up North:
Kids were getting eaten on the way home from school some time back in the 80's. A couple polar bears figured out the time that kids were going home from school and were waiting for them. Like a polar bear smorgasbord. I honestly don't know how many kids got eaten before they set up a system of having guys with guns walk 'em home, probably only one. But one kid getting eaten is really quite enough. Can you imagine having an escort like that? Your best friend gets EATEN by a polar bear, you're supposed to go home, and the only thing protecting you is a guy on a sno-'chine with a gun? As you can imagine, quite a few kids were absent from school for a while...
In Barrow, they also provide gun-toting escorts for Halloween... I'd probably try and plan my costume with that in mind... Maybe dress up as a polar bear hunter or an old time Eskimo hunter...
This last one is the saddest story- A starving polar bear broke into the home of a young Barrow couple. The husband protected his wife so that she could run for help. But before she could get back with guns and assistance, the polar bear had killed and started eating him.
So, yes, I think polar bears are beautiful, but my first thought when I see cute polar bear pictures is: Polar bears EAT PEOPLE!

Saturday, April 12, 2008


If you know what that word means, I'm sorry.
Jake & I have spent a good portion of the last 24 hours in the ER because we now know what Cellulitis means. He has a nasty serious biological infection in his foot and it is FREAKY.
He stepped on something at work about a week ago, one of the security tags they attach to clothing. It was hardly anything. Like a pin prick.
Two days later, he thought he had Athlete's Foot so we picked up some stuff at Freddy's.
Two days after that we went to the doctor because his foot was swelling and turning red. The doctor told us that it was a bacterial infection and put Jake on Bactrim. The next day Jake woke up covered in a wicked rash and his foot was worse- We now know he has a severe allergy to Bactrim.
Jake saw the doctor again, got on a different antibiotic, and his foot still got worse.
By this time his ankle was swollen and the redness was creeping up his leg, and the original spot was turning kinda purple.
So we went to the ER. They gave us a handout on Cellulitis, and it's one nasty wicked infection. Cellulitis is an infection of the skin and underlying tissue caused by streptococcal or staphylococcal bacteria. It damages skin tissues, can cause abscesses and it spreads quickly. It can be life-threatening. In other words, if this thing doesn't start getting better Jake could die from stepping on a Security tag...
We've had to go back to the ER every 7 hours for them to inject a serious antibiotic into an IV... We're gonna have to keep going back every 7 hours for the next 3 to 4 days. So, we're not sleeping so much.
He still really shouldn't be driving, so he can't go alone. My mom's watching the girls and they are kinda pathetic.
If his foot doesn't look better tonight when we go in another hour they're going to admit him. It would almost be easier than the repeat visits!
Jake's all calm about this and I'm freaking out! This thing is really quite frightening to me. I don't want him to lose his foot. I don't want him to die. They are being aggressive at the ER, so I know he's in good hands. And God's in control, but that doesn't mean something I don't want to happen won't happen.
Please God, watch over Jake. Heal his body. Give the doctors wisdom. Keep him safe.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Jane Jetson Zooms Again!

Okay. So, you can disagree with me. In fact, I might even like it if you disagree!
But it seems to me that the pop culture icon my current hair-do most closely resembles is that of Jane Jetson, George's wife.
I am not 100% sold on my current hair cut, but my husband is quite happy with it. He likes short hair, so I'm gonna give it a try for a while- at least 6 months.
I prefer longer hair on him, and he gave me a year of his life... (He called himself a hippie the whole time! :) So I'm gonna reciprocate and give him at least a little while longer with the shorter look.
Jane Jetson zooms again!

Princess Abigail

I want to draw your attention to my daughter's choice of shoes... When dressing up she NEVER chooses the same shoe for each foot. A running theme of her princess ensembles always includes mismatching shoes. In this current ensemble choice she is wearing the sparkly princess skirt with one of my blue heart slippers and one of my mom's blue slippers. She will often go 'clomp, bump' around in one of my heeled boots and one of her ballet slippers...
Silly girl.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

It's Snowing!

It's snowing buckets... Almost all the snow had melted in the last 2 days and I was thinking 'green, Green, GREEN!!'
And now snow is just clumping down. Bleccch! :(
Deborah & I are ready to use her Spring machine!
She's been praying the cutest requests for Spring to come and the snow to melt. I guess God knows what's best...

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Deep Thoughts, by J & R

Today on the way home, Jake and I decided that:
Donuts are better than Dang-its. ;)

My Most Serious Health Concern, Part 6

When I started this story, I had NO idea it would take so long!

When Jake & I started our relationship I warned him that it was unlikely I’d be able to have children. I’d dealt with it to a certain extent- still angry, but it seemed like something unlikely to change. We decided that after 2 or 4 years we’d try for a baby and then probably adopt. My Jake is an absolutely beautiful man- I think he was more interested in just having me, and he really GETS this: that when you love & marry someone, you love & marry their issues and health problems. He gets this way better than me...

Two years into our marriage I started feeling lousy- foods I loved tasted WRONG, and I was throwing up every morning. Really and truly I couldn’t imagine that I was pregnant. Finally, Jake & I bought a pregnancy test and were both rather shocked. I was pregnant! Me, the one who could not get pregnant, was pregnant.

I had already found a great OB in Seattle ‘cuz of my endo. So he guided us through the next few months. I had a rough pregnancy, was put on bed rest for about two months and finally gave birth to a purple 7 lb. baby girl, our beautiful and crazy Deborah. Honestly, it is not over-exaggerating to say I almost died during this time- I went into toxemia during the last two months of pregnancy and didn’t come out after Deborah was born. It took about 6 months for my blood pressure to come back down... My blood pressure was so high that I was seeing dark spots and actually had three numbers for a while- not just 190 over 90 - I had 190 over 90 over 87... This is BAD. I ended up back in the hospital, and then back in the hospital again...

Major decisions had to be made quickly, ‘cuz some kind of weird miscommunication happened with the school I taught at- they thought I’d decided not to come back and I thought they were holding my job. No job for me meant Jake had to get a better paying position and we ended up deciding to come up to live with my parents in Alaska while Jake went to college. He LOVED it and did fantastically well until I got pregnant again.

I was really sick again, although not on bed rest and the Abigail was born right as he started his fifth semester. Now the crazy thing about baby Abigail was that she seemed to need NO sleep at all. She’d catch these teeny 2 hour naps and be raring to go... Jake ended up dropping out of school and working for our church largely based on sheer lack of sleep and the craziness of our schedule.

It honestly wasn’t until Abigail was a year old and Deborah was 2 years old that I realized the gift God had given me. Don’t get me wrong. I recognized how beautiful my girls were and the miracle of their life. But somehow it wasn’t until they were old enough for me to get some sleep that I realized how angry and bitter I had been with God over the loss of my dream children.

It took 3 years of their being alive for me to come to grips with how this bitterness had affected my outlook on life. I had still taken pleasure in life. I had still worked for God and DELIGHTED in that work. I still had loved my husband, teaching and ministry, but this bitterness had weighed on me. It affected my trust in God, and my belief in His goodness.

What an amazing relief it was to finally ask Him for forgiveness and understand that He was in control- that He still makes miracles- that I should have trusted Him to know what was best- even if that meant adopting.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Deborah's Spring Machine

Deborah was very busy today after dinner, drawing, cutting and coloring. She showed me a few pictures (she's become quite the artist and we have a wonderful gallery of her work), but then she got really busy and kind of disappeared for a while.
Finally, she brought this to me and informed me that it is a 'Spring Machine'. You have to turn the dials and it will make Winter go away, and Spring come.
She also told me, "This is only a picture. You need to go to the store to buy one, but now you know what it looks like. And it's called a Spring Machine." She wants me to go buy one now...
Wish I could!!! We're all quite tired of Winter!
We took some of our tax refund this year and bought bikes and helmets for all of us. Deborah is EXTREMELY excited to learn how to ride a bike. So am I! Oddly enough, we never lived anyplace I could learn to ride one. I tried at my Morman cousins' house once, but got all freaked out. So, Jake decided to get me an adult tricycle! Whoo-hoo! I look like a little old granny, but I'm delighted. 36 is way too old to be learning to ride a bike- at least as far as I'm concerned. I never learned to roller skate, ice skate, skateboard, or ride a bike. Pretty pathetic, huh? Oh, well. I don't think 36 is too old to be learning how to ride a trike! Tee-hee.
Anyway, all four of us have been very intensely waiting for the snow and ice to melt and for it to warm up enough to go for a ride! As far as I'm concerned, 30's don't cut it. I want it to be at least 50. Plus, the ice would make it pretty darn slippery for the poor guy who has to run beside Deborah as she learns to ride her bike (and the poor guy will probably be her Daddy).
Winter, Go Away! And don't come back til at least October!

Luna's Face Plant

Somebody out there know why cats do this? If I did this I'd be miserable in 30 seconds...
This is my mom's new couch. The girls and life destroyed the old one in about 4 years. We're hoping that this new one can last a little longer... I know that she had high hopes for it until Abigail spilled an entire cup of juice on it today. They are NOT allowed to eat or drink anything on it, so it's a mystery how it keeps ending up with stuff on it.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

A Post!!!

I created a LOLcat for !

Which does not mean it will definitely be posted in their seriously LONG list of funny pics, but it does mean it could be posted in their seriously LONG list of funny pics.

Tee-hee! I feel special. ;)

Isn't my Luna cat beautiful?

Our Heavenly Father

I love this story from Max Lucado's Book, Come Thirsty and I've used it in Bible studies several times. No human father will ever be perfect, but Max uses this story about a human father to reflect on our Heavenly Father's perfect love and faithfulness.

In his delightful book The Dance of Hope, my friend Bill Frey tells of a blind student named John, whom he tutored at the University of Colorado in 1951. One day Bill asked John how he had become blind. The sightless student described an accident that had happened in his teenage years. The tragedy took not just the boy's sight but also his hope. He told Bill, "I was bitter and angry with God for letting it happen, and I took my anger out on everyone around me. I felt that since I had no future, I wouldn't lift a finger on my own behalf. Let others wait on me. I shut my bedroom door and refused to come out except for meals."

His admission surprised Bill. The student he assisted displayed no bitterness or anger. He asked John to explain the change. John credited his father. Weary of the pity party and ready for his son to get on with life, he reminded the boy of the impending winter and told him to mount the storm windows. "Do the work before I get home or else," the dad insisted, slamming the door on the way out.

John reacted with anger. Muttering and cursing and groping all the way to the garage, he found the windows, stepladder, and tools and went to work. "They'll be sorry when I fall off my ladder and break my neck." But he didn't fall. Little by little he inched around the house and finished the chore.

The assignment achieved the dad's goal. John reluctantly realized he could still work and began to reconstruct his life. Years late he learned something else about that day. When he shared this detail with Bill, his blind eyes misted. "I later discovered that at no time during the day had my father ever been more than four or five feet from my side."

The father had no intention of letting the boy fall.

Your Father has no intention of letting you fall, either. You can't see Him but He is present. You are "shielded by God's power" (1 Peter 1:5). He is "able to keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence without fault and with great joy" (Jude 24).
Quoted from Max Lucado's Come Thirsty


I now have a Facebook account... 'Cuz my Company friends have started an account so that we can keep in contact with each other. It's nigh unto impossible to check any Facebook account out unless you're registered, so if you want to check it out you'll have to join. :)

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Read a Book with Your Child

The best inheritance a parent can give his children is a few minutes of his time each day.
Orlando A. Battista

Poem: Recess


"Go play."
Girls, giggly and rude, pink and mean.
I stand in the corner and watch.
I am dressed wrong.
They are in jeans and tennis shoes (spotless white)
and pretty ironed blouses.
I wear a dress and brown loafers.
And on the days they wear dresses, I am wearing jeans.
My eyes follow their giggling, roving circles.
They play jacks, jump rope, tether ball,
sometimes they just whisper to each other
pointing to the boys, or to me.
I stand on the edge of the playground, watching.
My mind floats away, and I dream
of fairies and witches,
super heroes and maidens saved by strong
blond men on white horses.

This is one of the poems in which I mention 'pink'. Before my girls got to be 2-ish I had VERY strong negative feelings towards the color pink. Pink seemed to represent all these negative things about being girly- giggly, manipulative, snobby.
The girls both love pink and their love has slowly changed my feelings and opinion. But I also think being married has changed some of my negative feelings about femininity. It wasn't that I didn't want to be a girl. I wanted to be a woman- and not a girly one.

A Mistake

Over a hundred years ago, a group of fishermen were relaxing in the dining room of a Scottish seaside inn, trading fish stories. One of the men gestured widely, depicting the size of a fish that got away. His arm struck the serving maid's tea tray, sending the teapot flying into the whitewashed wall, where its contents left an irregular brown splotch.
The innkeeper surveyed the damage and sighed, "The whole wall will have to be repainted."
"Perhaps not," offered a stranger. "Let me work with it."
Having nothing to lose, the proprietor consented. The man pulled pencils, brushes, some jars of linseed oil, and pigment out of an art box. He sketched lines around the stains and dabbed shades and colors throughout the splashes of tea. In time, an image began to emerge: a stag with a great rack of antlers. The man inscribed his signature at the bottom, paid for his meal, and left. His name: Sir Edwin Landseer, famous painter of wildlife.
In his hands, a mistake became a masterpiece.
God's hands do the same, over and over. He draws together the disjointed blotches in our life and renders them an expression of his love. We become pictures: "examples of the incredible wealth of his favor and kindness toward us" (Eph 2:7)
Quoted from Max Lucado's "Come Thirsty"

It's easy for me to look at a big mistake I've made and think, "God can't do anything with me. I'm worthless. Nasty. Unusable."
But that's where God's light shines brightest. In the midst of my biggest, nastiest mistakes.
He can take those horrible things and make them a masterpiece.

A king who takes the neighbor's wife to bed then arranges to have the neighbor killed when the wife turns up pregnant? That's King David, called "The man after God's own heart."
A teenage girl who shows up pregnant before marriage? That's Mary, Jesus' mom.
A guy who gets so angry that he kills somebody 'accidently'? That's Moses, the guy God chose to lead the Jews out of captivity.
God makes miracles out of messes. Lights & leaders out of losers. Masterpieces out of mistakes.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Happy Easter

God bless you and your family- Spring is a special time to remember the new life Christ gives those who are willing to receive His gift.
Happy Resurrection Day!
I know these are late, but I just got time to take care of them... Jake was in Washington for the week and that's why he wasn't in these pictures, and why I didn't have time to post them until now.

The girls wanted me to take a picture of the bows in their hair. They were delighted with these enormous pink bows I found to match their dresses. It's funny to me that they both LOVE/adore/WALLOW in pink, when I am a distinctly NON-pink person. They are changing my feelings towards pink. I've got to share at least one of the poems I wrote that mentions the color pink.

Feeling Blue

Well, Jake is gone again. Only overnight this time and I'm hoping that tomorrow morning isn't like last week... I knew that the girls and I relied heavily on him, but I had no idea everything pretty much fell apart with him gone!
I grew up with a largely absent father- my Dad worked for the Bureau of Land Management and he'd be on the field for long stretches of time. During the summer he'd only come home on the odd weekend or so. He worked as a forester tagging trees in Oregon and then as a botanist in California. He had some real fun stories of coming up on marijuana fields growing out in the middle of the desert!
Anyway, my mom did most of the work of raising my sister and me. I don't know how she did it! She taught 4's & 5's Sunday School, had friends, ran a daycare out of her home... How on earth did she have a life when my Dad was gone something like 9 months out of the year?
There is no way I could do all the things she did!
My mom has commented to me a couple times that I shouldn't rely on Jake's assistance and intervention with the girls as much as I do.... That everything shouldn't completely fall apart with him gone. Maybe she's right. I don't know. But I do know I resented my father for being absent so much of the time. I do know that the relationship my girls have with Jake is precious and valuable to me. I know that little girls need their daddy. I know that I needed mine more than he was available.
I hate the idea of not relying on Jake! Of being completely strong enough to stand on my own without him... Isn't that what being married is about? Becoming 'one'? I'm not sure that co-dependency is actually all that bad... I think there's a certain amount of depending on each other that has to happen.
I read this book that described three different marriages- the first was the 'A' type. Like the two sides of the letter A, two people lean on each other and would fall without the other. The second was a letter that when cut apart would form two completely self-sufficient letter- I think it was 'W', which would then make 2 V's. The third was an 'H' marriage- two parts that don't lean on each other, but are not complete without the other. I liked the comparison very much. I am not complete without Jake here. I am capable. I am intelligent. I can do a ton of things without Jake. I'm an excellent teacher, and I hope I'm a good mother. However, I'm sad with him gone for one night! But I can carry on without him. I know we'll be okay- just sad...

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

The Weirdest Thing About Me

I suspect that there are many other things about me and my life that other people would consider much stranger than this- However, it seems to me that the weirdest thing about me is my left foot. I have the unique hereditary feature of the Emery family.
All of us Emery's have an enormous bunyan on our left foot and NONE on our right foot. I've got a picture of my Dad's family where they are all showing off their feet. Odd to see five long slender normal right feet and five oddly shaped (yes, you could even call them deformed) left feet...
I can also hiccup so high and loud it hurts people, but that doesn't seem weird- seems more like torture. I remember traveling once in the Company van and getting the hiccups... They wouldn't stop. And after a while they start hurting. Bad. I've got really powerful, loud and high-pitched hiccups. (I'm a high soprano who used to be able to hit A's & B's above the staff without working too hard.) I remember Eric saying, 'Please. Can't you make them stop? Please?!' So, they weren't just hurting me. They were hurting the people who had to hear them, too...

Ocean Flowers

I just finished this project and I'm excited about it... I've never made anything quite like this before and I'm pleased with how it turned out. I don't tend toward asymmetrical designs, but this pendant begged for something a little different. I've also never made a bail, which is the little bead wrap thing that's holding the pendant to the necklace.
I've been buying beading magazines to get some ideas about different design work and to inspire me... Some of the stuff I see is HIDEOUS! I really don't want to do beadwork just to find out if I can do something... I'd rather the result be something I'd be willing to wear.
I know I'm not really making 'art', or if it is it's more like commercial art- made specifically for a person to enjoy and buy. I love working with beads now and get excited about unique projects, although a lot of what I'm doing right now is just using beads to make projects I think people will like. My goal is to make something unique and lovely that people can't find anywhere else.
Oh, well! To see more of my stuff go here: It hasn't been updated in a LONG time, but I hope to do that before Farmer's Market season hits. (mid-May)