Thursday, April 29, 2010

5:45 AM

This is my get-up time as of Jan 1, 2010. It may be changing my life. I bought a coffee maker with a timer to make coffee at 5:30, because I do not think straight without it. This time has become precious to me.
This is my only alone-time any time of any day of the week, which I desperately need. I have to recharge alone. If I don't start my day off in the Word and prayer, it can spiral down in a jiffy! I feel anxious, behind, and snappy.

I have completely changed my prayer life to be more intentional throughout the days of the week. I pray for my husband differently every day. I pray for each child more specifically on a certain day, also our little guy in a tiny crib in Rwanda.
I pray for extended family Tuesdays, the persecuted church/missionaries on Wed, our church on Thursdays, my friends and esp. dear friends who are single on Friday.

I only write this because it is SO helpful to me to hear from others what is working in different areas of their life. One friend just told me she laminated an index card with what she was praying for each day of the week and put it in her shower, and on her mirror for when she gets ready. genius. Another friend has a "prayer corner" at an intersection, and when she drives by, her kids call out from the back-seat what they want her to pray for that day.

I also do my Bible Study, which I love!
I was reminded this semester through my Precept-study how much I really do treasure the Word. Digging deep, although sometimes feels tedious at first, yields rich rewards.
I did I Peter this semester which kicked my tail in the conviction department. God gently refined me and tought me through this book in areas of testing/trials, submission, and living a holy life. As you can see, all areas I could use some work in. All that to say, my time in the morning provided enough time for the indepth study I needed to do to complete it.
So, that's all, just my morning routine that has changed my days.
Now I just need to get in shape!! baby steps, baby steps...

"With my whole heart i seek you;
let me not wander from your commandments!
i have stored up your word in my heart,
that I might not sin against you...
i will not forget your word.
Deal bountifully with your servant,
that i may live and keep your word.
Open my eyes, that i may behold
wondrous things out of your law...
your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path."
Psalm 119

Friday, April 9, 2010

Quotes on Mothering

I will not attempt to add to these wise people with (much) chatter, but these few quotes are incredibly encouraging to me in this delightful but challenging season with several young children.
I struggle with my own desires to do "big" (by my own standards) things for God, and know these kids can't be my "god". But, lets be honest, the incredible amount of time and energy it takes to really raise and disciple these children well is significant, often crowding out time for my own "ministry". How I conduct myself with these precious gifts matters greatly to the Lord.

"She [a mother] is handling never-dying souls. She's daily conducting heart surgery on eternal spirts whose forever destinies are influenced most profoundly by the hands that rock their cradles, wipe their noses, spank their fannies, open their Bibles, prepare their after-school snacks, and turn off their bedroom lights. Those motherly hands are molding characters which will become men and women who will turn the world upside down either for good or for evil. Not that's a job that counts. " - Mark Chanski, Womanly Dominion

On feeling overwhelmed:
"Inspirational historical models may provide a temporary enthusiasm, but a mother of dominion needs something more. Otherwise, the grueling day and night demands of crying infants, filthy bottoms, vomit-soaked blankets, strong-willed naughtiness, physical exhaustion, dull routine, deferred gratifications, lack of recognition, cultural criticism, and personal disillusionment will bring the work of her hands to a grinding halt.
There she sits, exhausted on the edge of her bed, her face in her hands, wondering, 'Where is the glory in this?' She needs something more empowering to keep her going.

She needs to gain and maintain the deep conviction of the glory, honor, and nobility of selfless service. This she finds at the foot of the cross, looking up to the One who earned for Himself, 'the name that is above every name' by emptying Himself, taking the form of a bond servant. There she beholds her Savior, who mopped up the damning vomit of her own sin with the precious sponge of His perfect life and atoning death. The love of Christ constrains and compels her to press on. The Spirit of Christ empowers her." Womanly Dominion, pg. 120

On feeling the need (or desire) to be busy, busy, busy outside the home:
"The season of young children is a time to refrain. Refrain from most outside activities, even church activities. Now is a time to be faithful in's the springtime of mothering.Redeem the time, don't waste it." Sono Harris, mother to 7 (Josh, Alex, Brett)

"O, that God would give every mother a vision of the glory and splendor of the work that is given to her when a babe is placed in her bosom to be nursed and trained! Could she have but one glimpse into the future of that life as it reaches on into eternity; could she look into its soul to see its possibilities; could she be made to understand her own personal responsibility for the training of this child, for the development of its life, and for its destiny--she would see that in all God's world there is no other work so noble and so worthy of her best powers, and she would commit to no other's hand the sacred and holy trust given to her." --JR Miller

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Lake Day

Saturday, we got to go spend the day with dear friends we do not see near often enough. The Morris' invited us and the Brazeltons out to their lake house. The kids all love each other and we got to catch up and play around.
Mary and Melissa have both had a profound impact on my life, both discipling me in one way or another during our time in Houston. Same goes with Matt and West for Andy. We miss you! Thank you Morris' for a great day!!

Preston and his boats. I bet he said the word "boat" about 700 times.
Caroline, Melissa and Mark taking off.
There may be nothing I love more than being with my family on the water.
It is balm to my soul.
Preston's first jet-ski ride. Loved it.
This may have been the highlight of her 6 year old life. Will and Caroline rode the jet-ski near the boat where we were driving for an hour. just cruisin.
big time.
AK, Rebecca and Lucy manning the front of the boat
West and Annie Kate driving us around.
Even I got to ski. I am still sore!
I love this, AK on West's shoulders on a Morris-made disc device.
I had great water, while Andy had the most choppy water I've seen on a lake (it isn't bad here), but he did great!
Melissa and Mark playing. She is such a fun mom! You too Mary, why do I have no pics of you?

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter!

What a fun day with family and extended family and new friends! We all went to church together and then, we hosted my sister/Taylor/Campbell and then my parents, my brother/Liz and her parents, grandparents and brother/Danielle.

The guys swapping lies.
Mrs. Lozier and Mom

Easter Morning Baskets.
Dad and Mr. Lozier filling easter eggs for the hunt and eating a LOT of candy themselves!

Cousin Campbell. She may be the best, most mellow baby I've ever met! It's too bad the enormous pink pouf-ball bow came out of her hair before the picture!

We also had my new friends to our church and lunch, Peter and Jing and daughter Cheryl, from China, we met through Craigslist. They are doctoral students at UT.
They bought my double jogger, and we have developed a wonderful friendship. I love it when the Lord's fingerprints are all over a relationship. They are seeking Christianity, coming from a Communist background and God has allowed me to be part of their journey.
Just an plug for making friends with international students: they have been in Austin for 4 years and had never been in an American home until a month ago, in ours. They had never hosted Americans in theirs until me and my children. They have NO American friends and they live a quarter mile from where my church meets. They are dear and generous and a joy to know.
Mom and Dad- making more friends with Internationals every time I turn around! My mom now teaches an english class on campus and my dad always has his grad students around and now they are leading a marriage class for International Students.
Lucy, Cheryl and Caroline, comparing eggs filled with candy.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Attempted Easter Pictures

There is a plant nursery close to us that always has plastic flamingos out in the yard. They added big easter eggs and of course bluebonnets. I decided, being the brillant mother that I am to take Easter pictures today. So I dressed everyone and headed over. The girls were fine, but I forgot that large easter eggs are also in shape of balls that are fun to throw. I have not one picture of the 3 of them together.
Preston was a maniac.

His new LOVE in life is boats. Boats at the lake, boats in the bath, boats on his adorable clip on tie, and little plastic boats to carry around.
Carrying on quite a conversation with the flamingo.

We hadn't yet talked about how the blue bonnet is the sacred flower of Texas, not to be picked, punishable by jail :)

So, out of breath after all that and then a dirty diaper fiasco in chick-fila and him finding a marker in the car to color on his new duds, I stripped him down at home. I unloaded the car and looked out the window...