Friday, April 3, 2009

New bathrooms done!

Hooray! Our home has officially entered the 20th Century with electrical outlets in the bathrooms! Now Dad can visit and not have to shave in the bedroom and Corrie can dry her hair somewhere besides the living room.

All that's left is to figure out what to put on the walls and to add a border in the back bathroom. I'm putting it off until I see exactly what I want. I'll be walking around one day and it will just come to me...the only trouble with that is that when it finally comes to me I WANT IT DONE NOW! Then everything else has to be put on hold because Momma finally found the border she wanted.

I also have got to get an ebay sale up and going to pay for my kids summer activities. I'll blog more about that later.

We had a foster care placement that went so quickly this week: He came on Monday and was gone by Wednesday. Teen parents with drug charges...I am wondering if they couldn't find any evidence and so just returned the baby home. He was a nice little fella...just turned a year old last month.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

What My Kids Think About Me...'s my kids' (Erik-17, Corrie-15, Gracie-11) answers to random questions about their mom- and a few of my comments thrown in for good measure........

1. What is something mom always says to you?
E: Be nice to the cat.
C: Deal with it.
G: Go MAD (This means Go Make A Difference; I holler this at her as she gets out of the car for school)

2. What makes mom happy?
E: A hot bath with Richard Lederer (he's an author...not anything else, thank you)
C: Office supplies
G: A clean house

3. What makes mom sad?
E: Clutter
C: When Masterpiece Theatre is cancelled.
G: A messy house

4. What does your mom do to make you laugh?
E: She pampers the cats
C: When she tries to be cool
G: When she tries to dance “hip” (2 out of 3 think I am uncool...what's with that?)

5. What was your mom like as a child?
E: Prim and proper
C: Probably really boring and stuffy. I think she read all the time.
G: My mom was a child?

6. How old is your mom?
E: 37
C: In dog years or human years?
G: 39

7. How tall is your mom?
E: 5’8”ish
C: Taller than dad
G: Taller than my dad

8. What is her favorite thing to do?
E: Take a bath with a book
C: Clean
G: Read

9. What does your mom do when you're not around?
E: Sleep
C: Clean or facebook
G: Go to the zoo (this is true)

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for?
E: Speaking
C: Winning “Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader”
G: Singing

11. What is your mom really good at?
E: Speaking
C: Spouting off random facts about random things
G: Singing

12. What is your mom not very good at?
E: Biking, running, hiking, camping…anything outdoors
C: Saying “no” to people except me...she's very good at saying "no" to me
G: Being “hip”

13. What does your mom do for a job?
E: Stays at home with me
C: Speaks
G: Volunteer and clean

14.What is your mom's favorite food?
E: Those little ball things from Target
C: Lindor chocolate things
G: Chocolate

15.What makes you proud of your mom?
E: Knowledge and wisdom
C: When she gives a good sermon
G: Her ability to serve God without being scared that people will be all “blah” about her

16. If your mom were a super hero, who would she be?
E: Wonder Woman
C: Mrs. Clean
G: Wonder Woman

17. What do you and your mom do together?
E: Study
C: Watch documentaries
G: Eat and read

18. How are you and your mom the same?
E: We look alike…sort of
C: This question scares me
G: Looks and voice

19. How are you and your mom different?
E: I like it cold and she is a lizard
C: Music tastes
G: Our music that we like

20. How do you know your mom loves you?
E: She spends time and money for my education
C: She will listen to my music
G; She tells me all the time that I’m her favorite

21. What does your mom like most about your dad?
E: His character – he is caring
C: He has nice eyes…she has this “thing” about eyes
G: He stays with his family

22. Where is your mom's favorite place to go?
E: Texas
C: cemeteries
G: the bathtub or church

It would be interesting to ask these questions in another 10 years and see what the answers are!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I'm getting a new bathroom!!! Hooray!

I love my old house! However, the adage is true: When you own an old house, the only thing that always works in it is YOU!

When our house was built indoor plumbing was unheard of. So when they added indoor bathrooms sometime in the 40's they converted a coat closet to a sink and toilet room (you can't be "fat" and use the downstairs bathroom at our house) and then took what must have been a small storage area upstairs to put in a bath, toilet, and tub. No one thought to add electrical plugs. After all, what could you possibly do in a bathroom that required plugging in?

60-some years later, there are ALOT of things to do in a bathroom that require plugging in, especially when you have teenage daughters. We also have found that 60-some years of nastiness going down a tub drain tends to clog the drain and that pipes get old and refuse to give much water when they are elderly.

SO...thank to the generosity of my father who, figuring his money may disappear in the stock market anyway, has agreed to give me a portion of my inheritance early, I can do something with my old bathroom. (Gee, that makes me sound like the prodigal daughter.) Personally, I think he is just tired of visiting me and having to shave in the bedroom because there's no place to plug in his shaver in the bathroom.

We are taking the bathroom upstairs and turning it into TWO bathrooms and adding a shower in the basement. This will give us two showers, three toilets, three sinks AND electricity! WOOT! Hopefully, it will also give us more water pressure so that we have more than a dribble in the shower. Who knows? We may even be able to do laundry at the same time someone is in the shower.

AND we won't be greeted on Sunday morning by the sight of Corrie drying her hair in the living room. YES!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

January 20, 2009

Today is a day that will go down in history! I am excited that our nation has come to a point that we have felt free to elect a black man to the highest office of our nation. It is a day that I hope men like Frederick Douglas, Booker T. Washington, and Martin Luther King, Jr. are looking down on our nation rejoicing in knowing that a small part of the fulfillment of "the dream" is now reality. Perhaps, somewhere in the great unknown, Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth are hugging each other and praising God that, perhaps, we are closer to the understanding that the equality of humanity is not based upon skin pigmentation but upon the sacred image of God endowed by man's Creator. I believe that is great news for America...God wept for our future when we rejected the black man as our brother and passed laws that enslaved him and designated him as one with "no rights that any white man was bound to respect."

I remember the frustration in my mind as a little girl visiting a man in my home state of Texas. As he sat in the filthy, unkept house that he had provided for his family through the on-again, off-again jobs he had managed to acquire and lose in rapid succession, he told me that I needed to understand that "all black men are lazy and are only after our white women." History shows us that the ability to be lazy and a scoundrel is not dependent on one's skin color. I have known black men who were wretched and I have known white men who were wretched...when God looks at them he doesn't see a wretched black man or a wretched white men...He simply sees a wretched man in need of a Savior...and so should we.

But I also wonder if Douglas, Washington, King, Tubman, and Truth did not also weep as they saw the divided country that this man has been appointed to lead. We are fully aware that there were those who voted for Obama because he is a black that any different than refusing to vote for him based on the color of his skin? Either way we are still judging a man by his color rather than by his character. We are still a divided nation as we continue to reap what was sown so many years ago - we sowed seeds of division, hatred, and bitterness and we will continue to reap it until we have fully repented as a nation of our continued refusal to see each human, - male or female, black or white, Asian or Hispanic, born or unborn - as a Creation of God Almighty and, therefore, worthy of respect, honor, dignity, and protection of law. We obviously are not at that point with our view of unborn babies, be they black, white, male or female. And our new president has sworn to make it easier to discriminate against these members of humanity based, not on their color, but on their residence: the womb. Nope, we're not at that place of full equality based solely on being an Image Bearer just yet.

Let's pray for our new president...God alone knows what the future holds for the nation that he is leading.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

It's halfway through January

I am still basking in the newness of the year. New Year's is my favorite holiday! While I do more for Christmas...I probably get more personal satisfaction out of New Year's Day...and the days to follow. A new calendar with all the old tucked safely away for memories later...a new journal with fresh, crisp new pages. What new things will they hold next year when I tuck them safely away?

I do have some real changes to I am writing a letter to resign my position of recruiter with Iowa Kids Net. I am going to stay on as a trainer but I need to give up the recruiter position. I love the public relations part...but I don't like the marketing aspect. My job description has changed to include more of the marketing and I am just not ready to do that part. I believe in it...and I believe it needs to be done but we must all find our "link" in the "chain" and I think mine is the training aspect.

I am going to enjoy a few months of not working outside of my volunteer stuff. I continue to take care of my elderly deaf friend, Billy, and teach a Sunday School class. Foster parenting continues and I play the piano for several services a month at the church and a few other assorted things like teaching the library class at the school. But what I really hear the Lord telling me to focus on this year is STUDY. I am going to try to devote a few hours every day that I can to good, old-fashioned studying. Not sure what will come out of it but I am looking forward to it.

I still haven't picked out a hymn to be my "Hymn of the Year" yet. I'll let you know when I get it honed down. LOL

Friday, December 19, 2008

Gee...I've been a bad blogger lately!

Has it really been since the Gaither concert that I have written on this thing? Wow...that's what the holidays will do for you!

We had a great Thanksgiving! My ENTIRE family was here: Dad and my brother and sister. They have never all been to my house together and it was great! Then we went down together to Ottumwa for George and Waydene's 50th anniversary and all six cousins were together for the first time since 1977. We haven't done that since Jorin was a little pup. That was the year I dropped him on his head and ran away and hid because I thought that Uncle George would kill me.

I preached for George's church the Sunday following. They are such an easy church to preach to. Some places make it easy on a preacher and some...well...make it harder. First Pentecostal is easier than many I have spoken in. Their new pastor is just great! He is an evangelist at heart and has a vision to reach those in Ottumwa that aren't being reached elsewhere. If you're ever in Ottumwa drop in on them on Church Street.

It's time I preached at a Church of God in Christ here in Council Bluffs. I love preaching in black churches! When we left that night Shawn said, "Wow...I never heard you preach like that!" I said, "Gee, most of the time people don't work with me like that!"

You know...that's an interesting thought for me. Do I make it easier or harder for the person standing in the pulpit on Sunday? How can I make their job of preaching easier? Hmmm...I need to think on that! Any thoughts?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Gaither concert & memories of The Imperials

Had a great time at the Gaither concert last night...even though I felt like being home in bed with a cup of cocoa and really did toy with getting someone else to take my place. I am feeling better but mornings and evenings are when I am still struggling with my throat. Thanks to the Lord for giving me a better time during the day so I can get some work done. National Adoption Day is tomorrow and there's a lot of prep work behind the scenes to make sure all the media announcements are out and all of the families are prepared.

Shawn and I worked Russ Taff's booth at the concert. It was a blessing to us to be able to give some of our time to bless artists who have blessed us so many times. (My, that's a lot of blessing going around!) I have been listening to Russ' music since I was a kid. The Imperials were the IT group in my circle of friends in the late 70's. I had all of their music on 8-tracks and my first cassette was their release "Priority." This was during the time my parents were divorcing and I spent hours listening to their music when I couldn't sleep. I am only just now beginning to realize what a blessing it was during that time to have had that background...all those nights that I cried myself to sleep I would drift off listening to words like "Be still my soul and know that He is God..." and "Yes, Lord, I'd rather believe in You." For so many kids my age that were going through the same kinds of things they were drifting off to words like "The lunatic is in my head" or "I'm on a highway to hell..don't stop me." Thank God for those who have given us the opportunity to surround ourselves with encouragment through their music.

Before we left Russ last night, I thanked him for the years of ministry that he has given me. You know, we really don't stop often enough to pray or to say thanks to the people that God uses in our lives. So many were quick to jump on to Ray Boltz about his recent news but how many of us took time to just say "thanks" for the times the Lord held us up while listening to "The Anchor Holds"?

I suppose I identify with Russ because he knew what it was to be a PK in a place where he was having to sort out the differences he saw between the Message and the messanger. Not an easy thing to do when you're just a kid. It was interesting to note what most of the people who stopped by his booth said about his ministry: He sings with passion and such emotion. It made me think of the woman in the Bible who let her hair down and "wept much." When we have truly experienced God in the deep and dark places we come out of them with an intimacy that expresses itself in everything we do.

I lost all those old 8-tracks somewhere along the road of life...but each time I hear a strain of "Heed the Call" or "Old Man's Rubble" it takes me back to the time in my life when I began to solidify my decision that I would trust Jesus regardless of where life was taking me.

Thanks, Russ...for being a down to earth guy who realizes he's just traveling this road with the rest of us.