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Showing posts from February, 2014


It's Five Minute Friday - a blogging event that I look forward to every week! Writers all over the internet, joining together to write for five minutes (no stopping, no editing!) on a prompt provided by the lovely Lisa-Jo, then linking up and encouraging each other. Head here to learn more and join in.

Here in America, we have so many choices. Any item we want, we have a wall of them to choose from - unless it's some highly specialized something, there are going to be at least a few different choices (and if it is a highly specialized something that becomes popular, rest assured that others will jump on the bandwagon soon).
A little over a year ago, I went gluten-free (my Mum was diagnosed with Celiac, so it was precautionary. Subsequent events have confirmed my suspicion that I have it, as well). And suddenly I found my choices dwindling. There's more to it than just not eating bread - gluten is in everything (and that is only a slight exaggeration). It's an anti-clu…

Twenty Seven Million

The weekly reckoning...
253. 5am prayers together before Adam leaves for work
254. That Brooklyn chooses to use her mobility to move toward me, instead of away
255. Conscious acts of love that add up to peace and rest, even in the face of exhaustion
256. Someone having a use for information that I've been collecting
257. Brainstorming blog post ideas with Adam
258. Adam bringing home a Redbox movie because he knew I needed to knit
259. A pretty white bouquet from Whole Foods, to brighten our counter with
260. New tires, new brake pads, a new drive belt, and the ability to get them
261. Spending a Saturday learning to quilt with ladies from church
262. New-and-improved gluten free pizza crusts
263. A sunny start to a cloudy day
264. Pearl earrings from my grandparents, three Christmases ago
265. A washer and dryer
266. Sniffly baby snuggles
267. Reading poetry outloud with Brooklyn
268. Seven consecutive hours of sleep (an answered prayer!)
269. The irresistibly soporific effect of…

Further Up and Further In

It's been a week of exploration. Since Brooklyn perfected the Army-crawl (and I mean perfected - she's fast!) I've been systematically going through our apartment and clearing things out of her reach.

I've also gotten creative with containment methods. I hate to put her in the pack 'n' play all the time - but I need to eat periodically, and I like to have the kitchen clean when Adam gets home.  She had a grand time playing in the water, though, after she figured out how to turn it on.
This... I have no idea how this happened. I was sitting right next to her, reading outloud, and then she started making little distressed noises and patting my leg. Help... Mummy... I can't go anywhere... it's got me!

She's reasonably content to sit in roughly the same spot and play by herself - but only if I'm not in the same room. Thankfully, her room is clearly visible from the kitchen, so I can keep an eye on her without her noticing. We did have fun doing lau…

Flat and Square

Remember that quilting class at church that I mentioned signing up for last week? It was Saturday - and it was really, really fun. They have a ministry called "Piecemakers" that makes quilts for The Call (foster program), a crisis pregnancy center, chemotherapy patients, and victims of sex trafficking, and it's comprised of a bunch of lovely ladies - and they were the ones who taught the class.

They were incredibly kind, patient, and helpful teachers, with lots of tips and tricks (like using masking tape to mark your seam line) and tools (we got to use rotary cutters!) and it was really an enjoyable way to spend a Saturday.

I had fun piecing my quilt top - I'm a little apprehensive about getting it all put together, though. Unless it turns out to be a whole lot less terrifying than I imagine it to be, I'll probably just stick with piecing squares for them to quilt (sewing small bits of fabric together into geometric shapes sounds like my cup of tea!)

Over Valent…

Clothes, Hair, and a Giveaway

I have noticed a disturbing trend in "mommy fashion" - an imbalance in styles and beliefs. There seems to either be the camp of "Well, why can't you take a shower and style your hair and put on a full face of make-up and some pretty jewelry and a cute pair of heels every morning? It's just a baby." That's unrealistic. And then there's the other side of the coin: yoga pants and a ponytail. It may be comfortable, but that becomes depressing (to me) after a point.
Surely there is a middle ground. For the sake of my husband and my own dignity, I'm going to try to find it. So, behold this week's attempt at Mommy Fashion. I've discovered several  things over the past 8 months that are important when planning an outfit for a day spent with an unpredictable Tiny Person, and I'll try to share one each week.

This week? Scarves. Scarves are wonderful. If you get washable ones, they can prove highly entertaining to a baby, and they can cover (o…


It's Five Minute Friday! Writers all over blogdom, joining together to write for five minutes (no stopping, no editing!) on a prompt provided by the lovely Lisa-Jo! It's a wonderful chance to write, and the link-up provides wonderful perspective and community (try to give a little comment love to whomever linked up before you!) Head over here for more details and to join in.
[a post for my Bear - gratefully]
There is no such thing as a small act of love. And I don't mean that in a they all add up kind of way, but each one, in itself. The will to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself, is not something that comes naturally to us.
Because we are small. We go through life thinking of ourselves mostly, and sometimes of the people around us, and very rarely of the infinite God who is all around us. But when things like gentleness, faithfulness, kindness, patience, joy, peace, and love start pouring out of us, it…

Preparing for Rain

This week's gifts...
232. A car with gauges in the middle of the dashboard, so I can tape memory verses in the space
233. Spotting a soaring bald eagle on the drive home
234. The CD of Disney's Tarzan soundtrack my father-in-love gave me. Perfect trip music!
235. Time, multiplied
236. Adam safely home from Kentucky

Late Thursday evening/early Friday morning, an excited, prayerful, and slightly nervous group of bloggers began putting up posts about planting a garden in South Africa. They poured their hearts, their words, and sometimes more onto their screens and bravely clicked post. The responsive outpouring of love, sharing, and generosity was staggering - the first of a five-phase project, its goal was met double in a single day.
But that's the way that God works. Seeds are planted - small ones, hopeful ones, sprinkled in fresh earth - and then we watch the sky for life-giving rain. And He is so faithful to bring it! But if we plant the wrong kind of seeds, we may see the …

Things I've Learned, Baby Edition

1. All statements beginning with all babies, most babies, or even my baby should be accepted with a smile and a lot of grace. This is one area in which I hold to the "precious snowflake" view - your baby is unique, and so is theirs. So don't feel confused, surprised, concerned, or guilty when your baby functions differently - and don't place expectations on your child of reaching certain milestones by a certain time, or behaving in a certain manner, or let others force their expectations onto you.

2. 36 weeks goes by much more quickly after the baby is born. And they go through about the same amount of change. But it's much more interesting to watch a tiny person learn how to smile and sit up than it is to watch your wardrobe shrink as your belly expands (or that could just be me - I know people who enjoy the pregnant part of having a baby. I was not one of them. Morning sickness and back pain - gack.)

3. Waiting is best done progressively. If you're going t…

Things I've Learned

A few life-lessons from the past week...

1. A boy and his comforter are not soon parted. I think Adam's had this one for about 10 years - besides not being the prettiest of things to begin with (masculine, practical, and inexpensive would probably be the best descriptors) it had also seen a fair amount of abuse and had some off-colored spots that wouldn't wash out.

You'll notice, though, that I'm able to refer to it in the past tense. Our compromise was a new bedspread of my choosing (he gave some input, and I bravely didn't even suggest the deep purple one) if we could get jersey sheets to go with it. And everyone's happy with the end result. :)

2. If you pray for community, your church may offer a quilting workshop the next Saturday. I will probably be the youngest person there, which is perfectly fine with me - and if I'm not, then I've already got something in common with her (mutual enjoyment of fiber-craft and appreciation for the wisdom of our el…


It's Five Minute Friday! Writers internet-wide joining together to write for five minutes (no stopping, no editing!) on a prompt provided by the lovely Lisa-Jo --- for more details and to join in, click here! (If you've never followed through with that link before, please do it now. Her post today is important, whether you participate in FMF or not!)

For Valentine's Day, my Mum gave me a seed bombing kit. If you've never heard of such a thing, it's a simple enough concept: seeds for edible plants (or pretty flowers) are embedded into a ball of clay, then tossed into some forgotten corner that is in need of hope, optimally just before it rains. You could just sprinkle seeds in vacant lots, but making it into a hard ball allows you to chunk it further and get it over fences and such. 
It's a magnificent concept, and one that I've been dying to try since I first heard about it a few years ago. Growing something in a space that's otherwise unused feels lik…


Everywhere we look, there are empty spaces, waiting to be filled. There are empty moments, seconds collected between greater tasks and too often overlooked - but they could be filled with prayer. There are empty hearts, waiting to be filled with love, wanting to be wanted. There are empty hands, lifted high, begging God to take our earthy passions and fill us instead with grace from Heaven.

There are empty patches of earth under the South African sky, filled once a week with adults and orphaned and vulnerable children who gather to worship, to play, to share a meal... but many of the children depart to lives empty of supervision, outside of school. One day is filled - but what of the rest?

There are empty outlines, waiting to be filled with hope. Hope in the form of a permanent community center, a garden, a kitchen, classrooms, a playground... Hope for the other six days. Because we all need grace and mercy, broken bread and the Body it symbolizes, and a love so great that it merely …

The Place of Seeing God

The weekly reckoning!
211. Fun times and silliness with Brooklyn
212. Unexpected rebates from overpaid medical expenses
213. Tea samplers in cute tins
214. Five Minute Fridays
215. Brooklyn's willingness to sleep in
216. Sitting in the bookstore reading books with Brooklyn, to choose one for Adam's valentine
217. A family day before we all leave town separately
218. Snow, suddenly
219. Big Orange [burger place in Little Rock, who gets gf buns from Dempsey Bakery!]
220. Safe travels all 'round
221. Being witness to spiritual growth by leaps and bounds
222. Gentle reminders and conviction from the words of a sister in Christ
223. My parents' gas fireplace
224. Unlimited minutes for cross-country goodnights

Add to the beauty. That's my quest. That's why I design. That's why I write (probably awful) poetry. That's why I am nearly impossible to go on a hike with (it's like going with a three year old - every 20 feet, if that, I stop because there's a …

Goings and Doings

Such a big girl! She's really enjoying the time we've spent visiting grandparents and great-grandparents this week (I mean, who wouldn't love all of the attention?)

We were able to see Adam's family this trip, which was awesome. Grandma Sandy had a wonderful time playing with and reading to Brooklyn (who amiably decided not to cry on sight of Grandpa Alan, like last time) and Brooklyn thought it was hilarious to sit in a market bag (that did at least distract her from trying to get her Uncle Robert's water bottle. Surrounded by toys, she sprawled over them to get to it...)

She's gotten into and underneath a lot of things this past week... sitting in a laundry basket is a great indignity (not really sure why, but it is intensely offensive) but sitting under the laundry basket is hilarious, and had the added bonus of preventing her from unfolding everything as soon as I folded it. Why is it so much more fun to unfold the neatly stacked tea towels than it is to f…