Monday, September 12, 2011


My middle girl was injured today at school.  It's just never fun to get hurt and it's an especially big bummer when you're at school without your Mama to fix you up right away.

Holl gets picked up by our dear carpooling friends every day while Alyssa stays for volleyball practice, but I have Alyssa bring her out to our friends first. 

On this particular day she forgot her headband in her classroom.  Headbands are very important to this girl.  As are all accessories.  Her teacher gave her permission to go back to the classroom for the aforementioned headband and on the way back my girl was telling herself she'd better be quick so that she wouldn't miss her sister.  A little bit of running, paired with a hurried disposition, throw in some flip flops and disaster occurred.  Poor little soul skidded across the pavement on her knee and elbow.  This was not the world's worst scraped knee and elbow, but it made my heart hurt when she told me everyone was looking at her. 

On the bright side she quickly had a little friend come to her aid.  Her big sister also heard what happened and quickly came to care for her, our dear carpooling friend went in to check on her, and her teacher was very loving and gave excellent first aid.  I received a phone call from Mrs. Voss shortly after the incident telling me every detail.  She also made sure to tell me how wonderful my girls are: how brave Holland was and how she could tell she was really trying to pull it together and not cry (even though Mrs. Voss herself felt that she must be in a lot of pain) and then onto Alyssa and how she came right away to be there for her sister.  Awww.  Doesn't that just warm a Mama's heart.

My girl has been thoroughly pampered and coddled all afternoon.  She's loved it. 
Here's the damage:

Doesn't seem too serious, does it?

Hanging out with Mom makes it all better.

Monday, August 29, 2011

A List

It would really be impossible for me to list all of ways the Lord cared for us these last weeks.  I'm certain there are many things that went unseen.  Here are a few things I am not too blind to miss...

One week after school let out- our most inexpensive time of year.
Two weeks shy of a bonus, which by law is a requirement for that bonus to be paid.
The week after all of our bills were paid for the month.
The beginning of the month allowing our insurance coverage to last that entire month (during which we got all exams taken care of).
A whole summer off:).

2. Within days of his being let go we were already in contact with the VP of the company that is now his employer.  That gave us a good deal of hope early on.

3. Our new insurance began two days before our kids when back to school, and the first day of his employment.  It also has orthodontic coverage, as well as all my favorite doctors, dentist, and eye doctor being in network.

4. Another company called the day after this offer was accepted.  He wanted that one too, but it was just another way God was made a clear path.

5. While we were fortunate enough to have savings to carry us through, it was not with a whole lot of excitement we contemplated that type of savings depletion.  Graciously we saw a far smaller impact on our savings than what we anticipated. 

6. A hiring freeze.  The day of his hiring we were told that a hiring freeze had been put on the entire company because of the economy.  The VP had wanted to hire two salesmen and was told he could have one.  John was the one. 

7. Peace.  He truly does give a peace that passes all understanding and I experienced that.  It got to the point (because the hiring process can be sooo long) that I was just like "I don't really want him to get this job if it isn't the right one."  And I meant it.  I was at ease nearly the entire time.

8. Moving on.  John was long overdue to move on from his old job.  As odd as this sounds it was truly a blessing to have this happen.  It was proving very difficult for him bring himself to leave and this way we can trust that the timing was right and that it was the right thing for him.

9. Discovering that our friends truly care for us.  It brings a lump to my throat even now to dwell on the ways that our friends surrounded us during this.  Coming over early to talk with me, many many kind words of encouragement, picking up tabs, countless prayers, emails, phone calls, texts, im's.  I always knew that I had great friends.  But it is really amazing when you see them move into action and rally around you.

10. Our family is incredible.  The monetary gifts alone from our families were pretty astounding.  They allowed us to enjoy many activities this summer without having the 'oh, man, this is gonna cost us' feelings.  Cards, gift cards, tabs being paid, clothes being bought, a car being lent.  I don't even have adequate words for how much that meant to us.

I have to say, we have weathered some storms in our lives.  They aren't a whole lot of fun when you're in them.  But each time we come out, all breathless and dripping wet, I know that I would never trade them.  These are my times of growth.  My peaks rather than valleys in this Relationship.  I have never been let down.  And each time this weird (to the world) thing happens: I recognize a little more fully that He allows all this to come into my life.  And most importantly He can be glorified through it.  I don't need to fear it, I just need to lean on Him.  He will be strong through me.  I'm not saying I'm good at it.  Just that I recognize it. 

How about this quote from Stonewall Jackson in response to a captain who was awed by the General's calm manner on the battlefield: "Captain, my religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed.  God has fixed the time for my death.  I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me."  That from a man who rode around on a horse commanding men with bullets whizzing by.   
Jobloss Schmobloss.

Monday, August 8, 2011

So? I like things clean.

I wash library books.

It all started one rainy afternoon. Holland and I had returned home from the library giddy over our large pile of borrowed treasures. Popcorn was popped, pillows piled, a plethora of publication perfection. Alliteration. So fun. Moving on.
Tucker's Spooky Halloween is Holland's favorite book all year long and after having returned it late the previous time and not being able to renew (devastation) it was good to have Tucker back.

Apparently Tucker should never have been allowed to leave our home.

The first few pages were just like old times, that dog sure is determined to have a spooky costume, I mean really, if ever a dog was going to find a way to frighten the crap out of some poor unsuspecting two year old trick or treaters, it's Tucker. Kudos, Tucker. Kudos.
It was then that the defaming was discovered. Right there on little Tucker's cowboy hat was some snot nosed kid's gift to every other Tucker reader out there.
Holland's reaction: "Aaaahhh! Is that a BOOGER? Gross! Who would do that? Who would do that to Tucker? You have to get that off, Mommy!". To which I said, "Oh no I don't! You get if off!" To which she reminded me how I'm the grown up and she is the kid and how I should really take my responsibilities a little more seriously. Or something like that.
The booger was successfully removed but we were both a little scarred.
I just couldn't handle the thought of my girls taking library books anywhere near their beds or not washing their hands after reading them. Or heck, having them in the house at all. 

So. Now I wash library books. Obviously not paper pages. But board books get a thorough germ killing wipe down before they ever enter a child's room.
It takes forever.  But all fear is removed.
And if you'd like a list of our current check outs I can get that right over to you.

Clean books air drying. 
Yes, I drink Diet Dew while I clean them.
It takes forever.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

An Answer

I never cease to be amazed at the timing, provision, and caring of my Good God.

In this economy the average job search is now lasting nine months. 

Ours was 8 weeks.

If I were the person still searching for nine long months, I would imagine I would become desperate and finally take any job that came along.

We are looking at two amazing opportunity's and are feeling torn over which one to take.

I don't know how people make it through without having Him to lean on.  He has been a constant source of peace to us.  He has sent us many a friend and family member to care for us and encourage us.  And he has provided thoroughly.

I love these lyrics by Mark Harris...

I don't have a God I can put on a stand
Or a God I hold in the palm of my hand
I have a God that's holding me

And I don't have a God that I can create
In the place I live with the money I make
I have a God, He made everything

So I don't need a temporary man-made deity
When I got the real thing, I got the real thing

He's the Lord of all the earth, the maker of all things
He alone is the one true God
Kingdoms rise and fall but even through it all
He remains the one true God

My God is big enough to handle whatever comes my way and He is always consistent.  I'm so thankful that this is the case. I don't know what good a God would be to me if he weren't much larger than I am.  My God not only holds the whole universe by His might, but He also holds my life.


Matthew 6: 25-34

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


In the distance I can hear the thunder that awoke her, sending her scurrying through a dark house to find her comforter. 
A lot more weighs on me than just this warm bundle in my arms. 
She sighs causing me to look down. Her little rosebud mouth turns slightly up at the corners causing me to wonder whether she really sleeps or merely feints it, to keep me nearby. I don't move. This one is rarely still. 
My mind drifts. What is He doing?  What is planned?  "He is already in your future and He already has a solution" rises up. 
She stirs, eyes slowly blink, smacks her lips. "Are you ready to go back to bed?" No, her head shaking says. 
The room lightens, white light briefly illuminates little girl necessities. A dress up crown. Slippers. 
How much longer, Lord?  Won't you sit beside me and tell me the plans You have for me?  I'm trying to do this well for You. Your hand has been so present, so merciful through so many. But decisions are pressing. 
Soft rhythmic breathing. Soft beautiful face at rest. I lift this little one and place her carefully, securely, quietly back in bed. 
Thoughts send me scurrying to find Him in my dark. My comforter. 
He will carry me. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Slipping By

Summer, summer, summer.  Where are you going summer?  All your hot, sunny, happy days are blending together and speeding by before I can even catch up. 
I love you summer.  Say you won't go.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Oh. My. Goodness.

I am listening to the President speak on our debt right now.  And since I try to avoid politics on fb, I had to come here.

Does anyone actually believe this man when he speaks?  I can hardly take listening to him.  His slamming of the GOP for their proposed budget cuts.  The twisted way he describes these cuts, to which an uneducated listener would probably become enraged at the GOP over.  His talking about how the GOP will socially change America as we know it.  Is he seriously trying to make us think he believes in fiscal responsibility?  He who added more to our national debt in 19 months than all presidents Washington through Reagan, combined.  And then he outsources everything to congress so he can lay the blame on them. 

Ummm.  You're not believing this, right America? This is the rhetoric he used during his election campaign.  Change!  Except people weren't really listening.  This president is a socialist and what he meant by change was social change.    His past, his mentors, his church, his friends, his advisors and czars all prove it.  What's the saying?  If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, then it's a duck.  This man wants to redistribute the wealth in this country.  It's not about health care and his deep desire to care for people.  Take a look at his financial records.  They're public knowledge.  Don't you think that a man who cared that much about caring for people would donate of his own money to help?  Prior to his campaign, during which he ramped up his donations, he gave $1,050 in a year.  One thousand fifty dollars.  Wow.  There is a giving heart.  That's the problem with socialists.  They want everyone else to give but don't want to sacrifice themselves.

Then he starts in on tax cuts.  And how it's ridiculous to cut taxes for the wealthy.  Really?  You can't figure this one out, Obama?  Who creates jobs?  Not the poor.  Not the lower middle class.  Small business owners do.  The top wealthiest in the country do.  They spend money.  They also order products for their businesses which in turn spur more jobs- plastics, metals, glass, food, electronics, etc.

And then energy.  He personally has said he wants energy to skyrocket.  His own appointed energy secretary says we have to find a way to bring gas prices up to the rate of Europe in order to force the country to find other means of energy.  What?  We have plenty of means of energy here!  Drill you fool. 

I haven't even touched his social agendas- abortion, marriage, forced volunteerism.  Or international policies- turning our back on Israel and England.  Strange choices like encouraging people to revolt in Egypt (the defenders of Israel in the middle east) where the leader has been a traditional friend to the US, he has done bad things yes, however he has also been an ally.  Then we hastily send planes into Libya.  What is going on? 

Or what about his condescending and demeaning remarks.  Laughing at people.  Telling one man that if he's going to complain about gas prices it's his own fault for "hee hee, driving his big suv or his monster truck."  Then the man told Obama he had 10 children.  To which Obama pauses and says "Really?  You have 10 kids?  Well... well, you need one of those hybrid vans."  Uuuuhh, you mean the ones you can only get in Japan, Mr. President?  Great answer.  This is America.  We do what we want.  We have choices.  And we should not be punished for excerising our freedom.  So embarrassing to have that behavior from our president. 

I'm so disheartened.  I don't see how we could possibly withstand another four years with these horrible policies.    Is he truly out to just destroy us?  In the latest poll out today 69% of Americans say the country is on the wrong track.  I agree.  And the track that he has us on is not only scary, but down right puzzling.

I thought this was going to help me feel better.  It didn't. 

Wake up America.  What we need is morals.  Fiscal responsibility.  Smaller government.  Get rid of entitlements.  Someone willing to do the hard things and a country willing to sacrifice. 

I love my country.  Where has there ever been such prosperity, such beauty, such freedom all in one land?  These are all blessings from the Lord Almighty.  Without His hand upon us, we will not stand.

Hi, my name is Stephanie

And I have a problem with authority. 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Don't you love when your Costco check comes?  You push out of your head all the money you had to spend to get that Costco check.  You read how it says "redeemable only at Costco" and are so happy because that means you HAVE to spend it at Costco.

Visions of jalapeno artichoke dip, crab legs, and lots of wine dance in your head.

And then hubby comes home and says "Oh good, got the membership fee and diapers and wipes covered with that."  And you just say "Mmmhmmm."


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Flu Poetry

Flu  Flu  Flu

You make me feel like p** (I just can't bring myself to write that on my blog:))

I don't know what to do
 when I have the flu

The house is trashed

Hopes of dinner are dashed

I hate you flu
of that I am unabashed

Can you believe this is what this blog has come to?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

And then He does THAT

Follow up.
I 'taught' again last night.  I sat in the parking lot before I went in and prayed a very specific prayer.  I asked that I would be able to be me, and that I would glorify Him in my teaching. 
I am blown away by what followed that prayer.
I was able to interact with my 'students' easily, like I would on a regular basis.  I didn't worry about my wording so much and just had fun with it.  The class went really really well.  And it was fun.  In the middle of it I was thinking "Whoa.  What is this?  What is going on?  Thank you, Lord!" 
I am still thinking "What was that?",  with an added "Please let that keep happening!"
It also never ceases to amaze me, how the kind words of friends come at just the right moments, and the encouragement the Lord shows me through them. 

Monday, March 7, 2011

I'm a Baby

Warning: this is a pity party and a place for me to spew all of the yuck that I have inside right now.  You do not need to read it or comment on it.  It just had to be done.

I've started 'teaching' (believe me, I use that term as loosely as possible) yoga at my local studio two nights a week.  And... I want to quit. 

All I can think about all day everyday are these two classes.  I'm nauseous for most of the day, anxious, and filled with the thought "I can't do this.  Why am I doing this?"  All over teaching yoga.  Oh my word, what a baby.  I guess I just didn't realize how hard this was going to be for me.  I would imagine for some people it's really easy and comes naturally.  And I really thought it was going to be that way for me too.  That was a gross misjudgement on my part. 

Being good at yoga does not mean being a good teacher.

I'm up there, and I forget when we're supposed to be inhaling and when we're supposed to be exhaling, which then shatters my spirit and silences me.  I feel like they don't like my flow and then I change it up which has me deviating from my plan, and deviating from the plan is not good.  I don't feel like I can be myself because I'm on this runaway train of a class that I can't slow down.  I look out at the faces in my class and think "Oh my goodness, they are hating this.  They hate this flow and wish it would stop.  Oh man, they think I'm incompetent and HOW can she not come up with something better than this.  Great, I can't remember if we're supposed to be inhaling or exhaling.  Ugh, I forgot where I'm at.  Why am I doing this?  I shouldn't be doing this.  I have no business being up here.  I'm going to throw up.  How can I get out of this?"
Yeah, that's about right.  And all in the span of a few minutes.  

Yes, I know that I've only taught a handful of classes.  And yes, I've thought about how I haven't been able to take a lot of classes due to teacher training and the general out of control pace of my life right now.  But knowing those things doesn't make you feel better when you feel like you just gypped someone out of $15. 

I think that I need to just go teach gym yoga for a while so I don't have to feel guilty and so I can just LEARN what I'm doing.  But now I'm committed at this studio.  Which is making me feel like I need to be committed.

I know.  I'm a baby. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Oh boy

I have all three kids home today.  Alyssa is sick, and I'm suspecting flu.  And Holland I suspect, in typical Holland fashion,  just tagged along for the ride.

I am now terrified of summer.

Time to start getting creative about what is going to occupy these three for three months. 

And now maybe you're scared too.  I'll post what I come up with and maybe we will be able to survive together.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

About nothing

I love the word swagger.  Gonna use it.  All the time.

Peter Jackson is filming The Hobbit right now.  And he recast the same Bilbo and Gandalf.  Happy.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Dentist

I sort of always loved the dentist.  We chatted amicably.  He'd give me a free toothbrush and floss.  My teeth would be so shiny and pretty.  I wouldn't have a broken tooth.  I had dental insurance.

We still had a nice chat.  Even though most of it was over three rounds of Novocaine.  Three.
I have a new toothbrush and floss.  Along with a rinse to help heal minor mouth wounds.
My teeth are shiny and pretty.  Set off nicely by my swollen, sore, red gums. 
I don't have a broken tooth.  Anymore.
And I don't have dental insurance. 

See how shiny they are though?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dealing with it

When John started with Alliance he was given a work truck.  It wasn't fancy.  But it was included.  And so was the gas.  Not too long after that he was given his current car, a souped up Hyundai.  It's nice, lots of features (I DO love features), has treated him fairly well, and has been way more pleasant to drive.  As would be expected, it has vanity mirrors with lights, and soon after he got the car Alyssa pulled down the visor to play with the mirror.  Stuck to the outside of the cover is this sticker:
*picture coming*
Dealing With It. 

Alyssa thought this was hilarious and ever since then John and I laugh a little when I pull down the visor. 

This ridiculous little sticker is kind of how I'm feeling these days.  It seems that my kids are constantly bickering.  My house seems to be trashed for around 90% of the day.  I have far less time than I used to due to teacher training, basketball practice, basketball games, yoga classes to take, yoga classes to teach, church, school, time with friends, and on and on it goes.  It's been so much fun and I'm enjoying this time immensely.  But sometimes when I actually sit down I'm left feeling depleted.  Tank empty.  Dealing with it. 

And while my quiet time with the Lord has slipped quietly away, daily devotions after dinner have become routine and well loved.  I've been more thoughtful (meaning, I've actually been thinking... John stopped me the other day and asked what I was doing and what was the matter to which I replied, "Oh nothing, just thinking.  You're not used to that are you?) and more prayerful.  It feels like a good place to be.  One that will springboard me back into more Bible study time.  And one that has me setting the goal of one service project a month.  Aim small, miss small.  That's from The Patriot.  I'm not entirely sure what it means, but it seemed to fit.