Tuesday, April 30, 2013

I have done A LOT of reading this month!

I have done a lot of reading this month. I am really not sure how I managed it with everything else I have done this month but somehow I did. So here is the list just for this month. If I did a review I will have the link by the book and if it is a book I have re-read I will put a (*) by it.

1. Bathsheba- Jill Eileen Smith
2. Love Amid the Ashes- Mesu Andrews
3. The Hunger Games*- Suzanne Collins
4. Catching Fire*- Suzanne Collins
5. Mockingjay*- Suzanne Collins
6. Prayers from the Pews (REVIEW HERE)- Teri Lynne Underwood
7. Start (REVIEW HERE)- Jon Acuff
8. Taylor's Gift (REVIEW HERE)-Todd and Tara Storch
9. The Dance (REVIEW HERE)- Dan Walsh and Gary Smalley
10. The Secret Gospel of Ireland -James Behan and Leo Behan
11. Love Me If You Must-Nicole Young
12. Medical Error-Richard L. Mabry
13. The Biggest and The Toughest (REVIEW HERE)-Kelly Pulley
14. Goliath's Secret- Bonnie Feuer
15. The Right Call- Kathy Herman
16.Boomerang Bride- Fiona Lowe
17. Lady in the Mist- Laurie Alice Eakes
18. Deadlocked*- Charlaine Harris
19. On The Street Where You Live*- Mary Higgins Clark
20.Armed and Dangerous: Amped Edition- Ken Abraham
21. The Awesome Book About God for Kids- Sandy Silverthorne and Alisha Braatz
22. Pop Out and Paint: Farm Animals - Cindy A. Littlefield
23. Wars in Toyland- Joe Harris
24. God Calling For Kids- Phil A. Smouse
25. What A Son Needs From His Mom- Cheri Fuller
26. The Glass Wives- Amy Sue Nathan

And to be honest, that whole list was in the first two weeks of the month. Because these past two weeks have been filled with yard cleaning and house moving. I am looking forward to being done with the house renovations and moving in soon. Then I will have pictures posted for you. Because it has definitely been a crazy journey. What have you read this month? 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Books for Boys- Coming Soon

Since I am always on the look out for good books for my boys to read I thought that I would share with you some books that are coming out soon.

May 2013-



Goliath's Secret is about a Goliath frog in Africa who cannot talk. Several different animals attempt to teach Goliath Frog to talk with words like stone, stick, and leaf. When the animals finally learn how a Goliath Frog "talks" they understand that everyone communicates differently. My 2 year old and 6 year old loved this book. There were beautiful illustrations and the kids interacted with the story.  According to the publisher this book will be available on May 15, 2013.


June-

God Calling for Kids: Based on the classic devotional edited by A. J. Russell (None) is available on June 1, 2013.
I absolutely loved this book! We will definitely be getting a hard copy. It is short devotionals and Bible verses for every day of the year. I can easily pass this around at night for each child to take a turn reading the devotional (well except the 2 year old) and it will keep their attention. This is a must have!
 


July-
 



Wars in Toyland was a very fun read! Calvin (8) loved it. It is set up like a comic book. Alex has disappeared and his brother Matthew soon follows into Toyland. There is a battle warring and Matthew becomes a captain of his toy soldiers.  This title will be available on July 10, 2013.

August-

"The Awesome Book About God for Kids" is another book we will definitely be getting a hard copy of. This book is Bible stories making God a "friend" to kids. The stories are retold with fun dialogue while keeping the stories Biblically sound. I have read only one story out loud to my boys but I have personally read the whole book. My boys liked this version of Daniel and the lion's den more than other versions we have read with my 8 year


Pop Out and Paint Farm Animals  is available on August 7, 2013. It is a great activity for kids of all ages. All you have to do is pop out the pieces, paint them, and follow the instructions to put them together. Each animal comes with fun facts and  tips for painting them.  My children had a lot of fun painting the animals and my 2 year old loved making the animal noises to match them.

**I received the above titles from Netgalley for my unbiased reviews.**




Tuesday, April 23, 2013

"Start"


I received an advance copy of Jon Acuff's new book "Start" for being a part of his Launch Team. I loved it! I ended up with pages of notes to rival the notes from "You're Made for a God Sized Dream" by Holley Gerth. I think that these books are a great companion to each other. In "Start" there are road maps and guidelines and practical advice that makes the "road to awesome" an achievable goal. 

Do you remember when you were a kid and you thought that you were awesome? What happened to that person? For me, I grew up. I started listening to others tell me lies about what I was. But you know what, that person is still there buried under layers of hurt and pain begging to come out. And she can. She is dreaming already and following a path laid out by God. But I think what made this book a great companion to Holley's book was the extra "road map" guides. There are five stages to awesome. They are learning, editing, mastering, harvesting, and guiding. But every journey starts and ends the same:  you start and when it's done you start again. Acuff explains all the steps along the way and offers sage advice along the way. This book is now available and should be on your "To Read" list for dreaming.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Happy Monday!

I just wanted to tell y'all a couple of things. First off- I am sorry about the lack of posting last week and it will continue into this week. Second- I was given 7 days to get my yard ready for the addition of a double-wide last week. I thought I was going to have longer and some help but God has other plans apparently and gave me a week. So that is the absences from last week. This week it is being moved and my oldest son has state testing so we have to travel everyday for that. I am planning on using the time in my truck during testing to write so maybe things will be a little more "normal" this week but not completely. I will be back in full force next week and we will get back in the grove. Again, I apologize and I thank you for your understanding. I am so excited about this new house. We have been a family of 6 in a 2 bedroom/1 bath for a long time so the addition of a bedroom and a bathroom and more space is going to be great!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Knowing Your Role as a Wife and Mother

We've all heard it- we are supposed to be Proverbs 31 women and Titus 2 wives. Okay great, except I have yet to meet one. I have met the women who are close or who strive to be that person completely but never a perfect Proverbs 31 woman or a Titus 2 wife. So let's just say you've never heard of either of these women. I am going to help you out.

This is the Proverbs 31 woman:
10Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
11The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
13She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
14She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
15She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
16She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
17She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
18She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
19She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
22She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
24She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
28Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
29Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
30Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.
And this is the Titus 2 wife:

3The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
4That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
5To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
Honestly, the Titus 2 wife is a lot less overwhelming than the Proverbs 31 woman. Maybe because it is shorter or maybe because she doesn't seem quite as perfect. So here it is, our role as a wife and a mother in a nut shell- love them, teach them to be Godly people, and be faithful to your spouse with all your heart and soul. There you go. I summed it up right? Well actually no. We are supposed to be the keeper of our homes, honor our husbands, honor God, love our children, raise them as Godly people, be wise, be modest, be obedient, be discrete, not bring reproach on ourselves or our families, and we aren't supposed to gossip. Well there goes about 3 of those I am not off the top of my head. I am not wise, I try to be obedient but that one is really tough, and let's face it I love a good piece of gossip. And I truly think that they Proverbs 31 woman is a woman over her lifetime. I think it is supposed to be what we strive for in our lifetime not all at once whereas the Titus 2 wife is supposed to be all these things at once. Although the older woman is to teach the younger women how to do all of this. And in all of this we are supposed to be ourselves and true to God.  I think this is why it is so hard. We have to learn to be Godly within ourselves without becoming cookie cutter versions of these women. I'm sorry but I would hate to be a Stepford Wife. That is just a scary prospect to me. I want to be the woman God wants me to be without be identical to someone else. 
Do you struggle with being all of these things? What is the hardest thing that you struggle with?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Are your kids "Armed and Dangerous"?

 

Are your kids "Armed and Dangerous"? Do they know exactly where to look in the Bible for the scriptures on the tough topics? Well this might be the book they need. This book is organized by topics which include baptism, dating, friends, confession, and so many more. The best part- it is scriptures. Under each topic is scriptures for the topic. So if you want to find a great companion for your kids' Bible this is it. Without opinions and all that extra. Each chapter starts with a definition or a quote but then dives right in to the Word. 

I will admit that I felt some of the topics a little too old for my 12 year old until my husband pointed out that he will know about them anyway because of TV and talk around him. So I would give this book the age ratings of around 12 and up.

**I received a copy of this book through Netgalley for my unbiased review.**

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I will remember the hard days

I will remember the hard days. The days where I ran on autopilot because one of the boys has his days and nights mixed up. Days when I wanted to cry because no one would help me do anything at the house. The days where just getting out of bed seemed so hard I had to literally force myself to do it. Because one day all of that will be behind me. One day I will be there to tell a new mom it will be okay and to help her as she needs it. So I will remember the hard times so that one day I will help another mom through hers.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

"The Dance"- a review.

 
 I am going to be honest and say until this book I really have not been a Dan Walsh fan. Nothing against the guy personally, he just wasn't doing it for me as a writer. But now I am going to have to rethink that status. I read this book in one sitting. I did not want to put it down. I love how Walsh and Smalley make the characters come alive. I felt as if I was watching a movie while reading. The book was written to where you could see and feel the characters as if the were right in front of you. And the storyline was so good. Jim and Marilyn have been married for 27 years when she walks away. Both Jim and Marilyn have a lot to learn about themselves and each other. Though the biggest change of heart is Jim's, Marilyn learns a lot about herself in the process. And the ending is perfect. So if you are looking for a good fiction read click on the link below or head to your local bookstore and pick up a copy. 

**I received a copy of this book from Netgalley for my unbiased opinions.**
***Affiliated links used.***

When you take a week off....

So this week's assignment was to sit quietly and listen. Well I haven't had the chance to sit quietly and listen because of deadlines, yard work, and school. But I did listen. And I listened well. Recently I have become obsessed with numbers. The number of page views, the number of comments, and the number of people (not) signed up for my newsletter. And it has become a distraction. So I am not looking at numbers anymore. And I am taking a bit of a break from so much "prompt" writing. Next week is our state testing with school so all my post will be written by the end of this week and scheduled to post. It will also bring the end to this session with my (In)RL group. And in a couple of weeks the book club will end. SO here are the plans through the summer. As commitments end I will not be looking for new ones until the fall. So posting will most likely not be 5 days a week. And there will be heartfelt writing and lots of book reviews. That is what listening brought me this week. Have you listened this past week. What did you hear?

Monday, April 15, 2013

Bloggers Meet and Greet

This week I am participating in a Bloggers Meet and Greet hosted by Raising Mighty Arrows. Click below to meet some great bloggers!

"Taylor's Gift"- a Review








I am going to warn you- you will need lots of kleenex when reading this book. This is the story of a 13 year old girl who's life was tragically cut short while skiing with her family on spring break. Her family decided to donate her organs so that Taylor's death would have a profound effect on people. Then they started the Taylor's Gift Foundation. The foundation is there to raise awareness for organ donation. Only 4 of every 10 adults is registered as an organ donor. And even if you register when you get your driver's license you might not be on the state registry. So if your family doesn't know your wishes and your driver's license can't be found then they won't donate your organs. But if you are on the state list it will show up at the hospital and everyone will know your wishes. If you don't know if you are on the list you can check that on the foundation's website too.

This book chronicles the emotional journey that Taylor's parents embark on after her death and the far reaching effects of their daughter's death. You meet the donors and see the difference that Taylor's organs made in their lives. This book is beautifully written and raises awareness for a great need in this country. Through tragedy there is light.

One more thing about organ donation. I am not an organ donor on my driver's license for several reasons. But I am about to change that. My family all knows that my wishes state that I will be one if something happens but I also realize that after reading another book (fiction- Karen Kingsbury's "Coming Home") that if my entire family was in a wreck and no one was able to tell the doctor's that I wanted to donate, it would not happen. So my plea to you is to follow this family's example. Register as an organ donor today. Make sure it is on your driver's license and on the state registry.

If you would like to donate to Taylor's Gift you can visit their website at www.taylorsgift.org.
You can also buy the book here:




Friday, April 12, 2013

Praying for Your Church and a Review.

I am incredibly honored to be able to call Teri Lynne Underwood my friend. She has a book our (available on Amazon) titled Prayers From The Pews: the Power of Praying for Your Church. I actually had this book on my Wishlist before I met Teri Lynne and after I met her I had to buy it. I often become frustrated with my home church for a variety of reasons. I love every person there and we are truly a family (we are a small congregation). That leaves very little room to rock the boat when something is frustrating you. And although I often pray for the members of our church I rarely pray for the church (little "c") itself. And I really need to, we all do. And when I really look at what is frustrating me at the church, I realize "the problem with the church is me" (pg 51). I don't mean that I am causing problems, I mean that I am not willing to speak up or do what needs to be done, or in a bigger since that I am dealing with my own insecurities in a certain area. I like to find the problems in others but not in myself and finding this thought in the book floored me. Because while I do like to point out what's wrong I don't want to take the ownership of them to solve the problem. Praying for our churches and the members is essential. And I will admit that I don't like the answers to the following questions:

1. "Would [Jesus] have rejected joining with my church and instead formed His own church?" (pg 58)

2. "Are you spending more time talking about being the church or more time doing what Jesus actually did?" (pg 59)

This book asks the tough questions and then points out the importance of praying for the church, it's members, and our frustrations and concerns. So if you have ever been or are frustrated with your home church, you should go out and get a copy of this book. The message is in the title: Prayers for the Pews: The Power of Praying for Your Church.


Thursday, April 11, 2013

"Real Moms. Real Jesus"- Chapters 4 and 5

I love how Savage compares motherhood to a profession in chapter 4. That one thought can really change your outlook. Because we all want to climb that corporate ladder at our "jobs"-you know the ones that pay with real money- but we tend to be happy with average at home. If I approach motherhood the same way I used to approach my paying job it would make a huge difference. I would approach it with a different purpose other than just raising my boys. I would go a little further than "average" each day just taking that extra step.

But even taking that extra step, we need to keep in mind that "we can't do everything" (pg 54). We need to set boundaries with out time just like we would at work. I am a licensed physical therapist assistant (just not practicing). When I was practicing I had a schedule. The patient's had to fit in that blocked off time. Documentation had it's time and did travel between facilities. I had much better time management than I do now that I stay home with my children. We need to set boundaries with our time and with our commitments. I have noticed since staying at home that people think that I have a lot of time on my hands. They seem to forget that I also homeschool. I am not just at home with my children going to school during the day giving me a lot of free time. So I personally pick and chose the commitments I make. And I have yet to feel guilty about saying no. Because you know what- Jesus said no. He said no to people who would take him away from his higher purpose. He said no to people who wanted him to do more than he was able and still give what he needed to give on this earth. He said no without guilt. We can too. Savage gives several great strategies in chapter 4 for how to do this.

In chapter 5, Savage talks about sacrifice. As mothers we sacrifice all the time. We sacrifice time, material items, and even our bodies. We always put at least one person on this earth first- or in my case four. We have to. It is part of the job description no matter how you became a mom. And you know who understands this better than anyone. He gave the ultimate sacrifice when he died on the cross for us. But even Jesus knew that you had to balance sacrifice with self care. We need to take care of ourselves mentally, emotionally, and physically so that we can keep going. You aren't going to be able to serve your children's needs running on empty.

The reading for these chapters in Matthew 10-13.

The scriptures are:
Matthew 11:28
Proverbs 22:6

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Mom vs. Mom



We all do it. We compare ourselves to other moms everyday. And to make it worse, others compare us too. All mom's are definitely not created equal. That mom over there is a great cook but a horrible housekeeper, the mom next to her is a great housekeeper but a lousy cook, and the other one is horrible at cooking and housecleaning but she is great at creative play and her kids were reading by the age of 3. We ALL have strengths and weaknesses. Me- well let's see- I make great Taco Pie and Spaghetti (don't tell my boys that the sauce is from a jar), I encourage reading and writing but don't come to me for help in math, cleaning is not my strong point but I love to decorate, and I have a very low patience level. I am not a great mom, but neither is the one that we all try to compare ourselves to. Because she is hiding her weaknesses from us. And you know what- she's not the mom for your children. You are. That's why we can't compare each other. God created YOU to be the mom YOUR CHILDREN need YOU to be. Not the mom the neighbors kids need. And though you may be the fun mom in the group- those other kids need the strengths given to their moms to make it through. I often joke with my husband that if we ever won the big game that the third thing I would do is hire a cook and a housekeeper. Housekeeper everyday and cook once a week to make freezer meals for us. Those are not my strengths. But being at every school event possible (when they went to public school), being at every sporting event I can, reading together, watching movies together, and going shopping- that's where I am great. And I accept that. I try to do better in other areas I do but I have given up comparing myself to others- now if only my mom would quit comparing me to every mom she knows.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Books for Boys- "The Biggest and The Toughest"

I am attempting to instill a love of reading into my boys. It has worked well with the oldest and not so well with the middle two. The "baby" loves to have someone read to him and he will pick up a book and "read" it to himself. So when I ran across this book on Netgalley I jumped at the chance to review them. This was the first book that I received and Miles has loved it. As a matter of fact he just asked me to read it to him again.



The Biggest and Toughest  

This book is great for a 2-5 year old. It is Biblically authentic and not to advanced for their understanding. It was easy to read to Miles with it's rhyming patterns and excellent flow. Miles also liked the illustrations and the story became very interactive for him. He acted out being Goliath and then being David with the sling. This would also be a good book for a beginning reader with its flow. This would be a great addition to any library but especially a boy's.


**I received these titles from Netgalley for my unbiased reviews.****

Dear Chihuahua of Fear....

Dear Chihuahua of Fear,

     Have you ever watched "True Blood"? Well I am the Alcide around here (except Joe Manganiello is hot- I mean seriously have you seen those abs? Oh and I am not a guy- so yeah, I am the female Alcide.) I digress. You, little chihuahua are trying to cause problems in the pack. And that is not cool. Do you want to get squashed like a little bug?

     Trouble makers aren't going to make it in this pack. You either need to learn your place or I am going to go all wolf on a rabbit on you. So here are some things you need to understand:
1. You only need to show up when needed- ie. Dangerous situations.
2. My dream is bigger than you so don't try to take it over (wolf/rabbit).
3. You are only needed in small amounts (I mean you are a chihuahua right) to remind me that my dream is bigger than me and I need help with it. BUT DON'T OVERSTEP EVER!

    You got all that? You want to be part of this pack? Then you need to follow the rules. Otherwise you are gone. I will replace you with a hamster. Don't try me.

Thanks so much!
Laura

Photobucket

Monday, April 8, 2013

Stay at home they said, it will be easy they said, well they lied!

I have been a stay at home mom for 8 months. And I have to tell you, all those people who make it look easy are lying! It is hard. I had it easier when I had a full time job. My house is never clean, the laundry is never done, and getting supper on the table at a decent time is not a common occurrence at all. It really may be easier if my kids still went to school outside of the house but they don't. In addition to staying home I am homeschooling 4 boys. There are days that I want to walk away and not look back. I have days where I want to start looking for a job and send them all back to school. But I am learning a lot about my children and I am getting time I would never have gotten before. And I am learning a lot about time management and schedules. (Not that it actually happens but I see where it would be beneficial.) I am learning that following your dreams is not easy or a fairy tale. There is a lot to learn by staying at home.

  1. Your children are more like you then you want to admit.
    I have always butted heads with my second son. It seems like from the time he could talk he has had it out for me. In the past year I have learned something. He and I are a lot alike. We get mad at the same things, we both love to procrastinate, and we both like to have “me” time. He is still the reason that I spend most days feeling like a failure with his 6 year old brother coming in at a close second. And he is the reason that I yell ahout 90% of the time. But when it is just me and him he is the best child anyone could ask for.

  1. A house full of boys will only stay clean if you can afford to have someone else do it for you.
    The more I listened to all these other stay at home moms with clean houses talking the more I noticed a common thread- they ALL have a cleaning lady who comes 2-3 times a week. And they all send their kids to school or daycare at least 3 days a week. Then when I talk to other stay at home moms who don't do all that I realize I am normal. I would love for my house to still be clean the next day but until these boys grow up a little bit that isn't going to happen.
  2. Time Management would be great and so would a schedule but let's face it I AM EXHAUSTED!
    I actually did good with this at the beginning of the year. We had a schedule and we stuck to it and everything ran like clockwork. But then I went out of town with my husband for a week and when I came back the schedule was out the window. It is funny how no matter how hard I try to get it back it isn't working. And my 2 year old still has not recovered from that trip almost 6 months ago. He is clingy. He won't leave my side at night. And he wakes me up at least 3 times to tell me I am still there. (Because, you know, I didn't already know that.) My goal is to by the beginning of next school year to have a schedule that we stick with. I do have a couple of trips planned for next year but I will make it work out.
  3. I am not missing the little things anymore.
    I have worked or gone to school through all the baby years with my boys. So staying at home with my 2 year old is meaning a lot. I get hugs and kisses all day. He crawls up in my lap at the most inconvient times but I secretly wouldn't change that. I spend more time with my children now than I have their entire lives and since my oldest is 12 that is scary.
  4. Being a teacher is hard!
    After the first 3 days of homeschool I realized that I took all of our former teachers for granted. I really did. They work hard. By 3 PM I am ready to go to bed. And I only have 4 kids- they have about 30 to deal with all day.
  5. 6th grade Math can reduce me to tears.
    I don't know how they expect kids to do all of that stuff. I mean really! I don't remember half of that stuff from school- and let's face it, I don't use any of it in everyday life anyway. Or I didn't until I started homeschooling a 6th grader.
  6. 6 people + 1 income= hard times
    When you are used to 2 incomes and having spending money it is hard to go to one. And I miss it a lot. I wish that I had the income back with the ability to stay at home. That being said, my kids have WAY too much stuff. I am working on going through it and thinning it out. And I am more aware of how money is spent around out house now. Which is a double edged sword.
  7. I really don't like to cook
    I would rather have someone else do it for me. As in if we ever won the big game I would hire a cook and a cleaning person in a heartbeat. And then I would put in a pool to sit by all day.
  8. I yell- Alot.
    I didn't realize how much I yelled until my husband pointed it out. Although he did say it was better after I had a night off to go do something without the kids. (Yes, he says that, and then since he works ALL the time I don't get to do it anymore.) I am actually doing this challenge called the Orange Rhino Challenge- no yelling in anger for 365 days (Um- I think I will try 30 days first).
  9. I love to write.
    I blog with more of an agenda now days. I try to target a certain audience. But I love to write. I may not be that good at it and I honestly hate grammer and editing so I don't do it that much, but I love writing.

So there are 10 things that I have learned in this first 8 months. I am debating on some changes with all of this but I do know for sure that until I have to or all of our kids are out of the house I will not go back to work full time. The time that I have with my kids is precious and fleeting. And spreading God's word through writing is important. I had all these grand plans about going on field trips and laughing throughout the day. But economy stuck their head in so we don't. And laughing only gets to happen if you finish your work without driving your mom to tears. I am living my dream of being a stay at home mom with a few twists thrown in. I am thankful for that. And I know they said that it was easy but they lied. It is the hardest job on this planet. And I am lucky enough to have it.

Friday, April 5, 2013

We Really Weren't Created Equal- Man vs. Woman

I am all for equal pay and equal rights so don't take this post the wrong way. I think men and women deserve the same rights when it comes to voting, trying out for a job, service in a consumer based business, and many other areas. And I agree with equal pay in MOST jobs, if the man and the woman can carry the same load, do the same exact things, and the woman isn't asking the man to carry part of her share. But man and woman really weren't created equal.

MEN:
Men were created FIRST-
And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.- Genesis 2:7

Men are the HEAD of the household:
- For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body.-Ephesians 5:23

Men are the church leaders:
-Let deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.-1Timothy 3:12

Men are the stronger vessels:
-Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered. -1Peter 3:7

WOMEN:
Were created from man to be his helper:

Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
 And Adam said:
“This is now bone of my bones
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man.”- Genesis 2:22-23

Women are to be submissive to their husbands:

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord- Colossians 3:18

Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives,- 1 Peter 3:1

Women are to be respectful to their husbands, love them, and be obedient:

Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.- Ephesians 5:33
 that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children,  to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.- Titus 2:4-5


We have different roles set by God. We are NOT created equal in those. We as wives are supposed to be a helper not their leader. The man is the head of the household. So yes I agree in some equality there but I know that we are not and are not supposed to be equal in everything. 

Do you have more verses or would you like to counter the above? Leave a comment below.

Orange Rino Challenge




So I heard about this challenge on one of the numerous blogs that I follow. You can't yell for 365 days. That goal is a bit lofty to me so I am going to set the goal at 30 days to start. Now this doesn't mean that I can't yell encouragement at a ball game or yell their names when it's time to come inside. This means that I can't yell at them in anger and frustration. Which occurs, oh, say 50 times a day. I am sure that there will be days that I fail, but I am going to try this and give updates each week about what I am learning through this process. So I tracked my yelling for the past week. Just to see when I yell the most, who I yell at, and why. The results weren't that surprising actually. So here is to me trying not to yell for 30 days. Want to join? Click the button below and learn how.




Thursday, April 4, 2013

Real Moms, Real Jesus- Chapters 2 and 3

Have you ever met an SEC fan? I don't care what team in the SEC. Do you know what we have that other fans don't? We are die hard fans. It doesn't matter what happens in the season with any sport, we support our team. That is what comes to my mind when reading the start of chapter 2 while Savage is talking about a football game. That is how faith should look. We should be on fire for Jesus and God just like we are about our SEC team. We are devoted with passions indescribable to those teams and we should have that for our Savoir and our Father. And you know that hole in your life Jan ---> September when college football is in the off season that we try to fill with other sports and hobbies? Just like that hole, there is a "God shaped hole in each our hearts...We are always trying to fill it in" (pg27). And by filling it with anything other than God "we build an idol- a false God in our life" (pg28). We look to food, T.V., sports, etc to fill us up when really what we need to do is pick up the Bible and fill our heart with God's word. To develop a true worship. "True worship is a God- attitude of the heart" (pg30).

"Jesus' life was an act of worship" (pg30). And his life strengthens us. Savage gives us two ways on pages 30-31, "First Jesus lived in a world that was hostile to him and what he was trying to accomplish. At every turn He had someone questioning his identity and calling him a liar. As mothers, we too live in a hostile environment today. It's an anti-family, anti-God world of moral relativism and decaying family values. Jesus knows what it feels like to be swimming upstream against a strong current! He lived it. His success laid the path for our success.
Second, we know that Jesus struggled with the reality of what God was asking him to do. He knew he was sent to save a lost world, but he also knew that required his physical torture and then painful death. Even in the Garden of Gethsemane, right before he was arrested and ultimately sent to the cross, he said, 'My father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me' (Matthew 26:29)."

No, our lives as moms cannot compare to what Jesus bore for us but he understands when our cup is running over and we are feeling overwhelmed. And as moms we can worship him through that overflowing cup. We need to put a smile on our faces and count our blessings. We need to find Him in our daily lives. We can do it. Somedays it may be hard while others it will be the easiest thing you do all day. But worship him. Teach your children to worship him.  "We praise God- we worship Him- by putting him first in our hearts and our minds. And when we do that, our attitude is the first thing to change" (pg 32).

You know as a mom that you cannot go to the bathroom alone. EVER. I normally have about 10 seconds if no one sees me before the knob is turning or hands are under the door with the little voice of my two year old looking for me. OR that is when there is something vitally important that an older child "has to have help" with. I have learned to lock the door if I absolutely need a break for 30 seconds. We need to take whatever we can get to breathe and regain some perspective.

The start of chapter 3 is something that we all know. That dreaded anticipation of shots. (I don't tell my children it's that day until the nurse comes in the door with it). The fear leading up to it is so much worse than the shot. And I normally don't have the patience by the time the shot gets there to be calm and loving about the fear (normally we have been there through at least two children). And when my children pull something big my initial reaction is to blow up. I normally have to walk away until I can talk about it without yelling. I am just not a patient person by nature. I am one who reacts first, thinks later. That is something that I am working on. It will build my relationship with my children better to be calm and loving instead of mad and not listening. We all mess up and we need to remember that when talking to our children. That is why we have Jesus.

As a mom, we are always in high demand. It never fails. Bathroom breaks, Ladies Day at church, or you just started cleaning the oven and here they come. With thousands of questions or wanting to be held. This is normally the blow up time. But we need to step back. Ask them to give you a few minutes. Or to sit and talk while you finish what you are doing. Or if you have to be somewhere asking them if it is absolutely the only time to talk about it or can it wait until you get back. Breathe first, take the calm approach. You won't always be in high demand.

The Bible reading for these chapters is Matthew 5-9.

Scriptures are:
Mark 1:35
Phillipians 4:13

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Serving- a Marriage and Mommyhood post

This picture was taken at a local health fair in 2011. All of the above ladies worked at our hospital. That man is Scott Rigsby. He is a Iron Man. He has thrown himself into speaking and encouraging others with his story. The point all of us served that day. We did free blood pressures and vital signs. We did free cholesterol and PSA screens. We talked about the importance of exercise for healthy lives. We encouraged with stories of tragedy turned into triumph. We served. I was always the one in the department to work the health fair. It was always on a Saturday. But we served the community that day when some of them wouldn't have been checked otherwise. My children have always known why I worked the health fairs. To serve others. My job back then was to serve others. My job now is to serve my children. And my children serve others as well. They hold doors open when we go somewhere, they help to pick things up at the church in the nursery, they actually go help clean the church yard and building on Saturdays. They know to serve. We haven't gotten into the "big" serving talks with all of them, just the oldest. But we teach them to serve by example. We lead them to serve. And they follow through and serve when we least expect it.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Things that God is asking...

Last week was a very "odd" week. In the course of 2 days I was asked to step outside of my comfort zone by 2 different groups. And after the first one asked God threw a say yes in my head even though I told them I had to think about it. When after 5 mins I couldn't get Moses saying "why me" out of my head I messaged them back yes. Then I received an email asking me to volunteer some time everyday posting scriptures to Facebook and Twitter. This one actually had me stopping and thinking. Not because I didn't want to. Because I wanted to really check and see that I could commit to that. A couple of hours later when I couldn't keep telling myself no because let's face it, I am on Facebook all day anyway (don't tell my kids teacher ;), I emailed her back and asked her to send me the details. So here I am thinking okay I am good, I stepped out of my zone twice this week so I am done for a while getting uncomfortable. I am committed to two things all for God and encouraging others. Whew! Little did I know. For the past month I have seen these posts by a very dear friend who is our former preacher about a youth program called Lads to Leaders. I know of the program, I have for a while. But the past couple of days there has been a lot of tugging on my heart to present it to the church as a goal for our youth to participate in 2014. I mean a really hard tugging. So this Friday morning I gave in, I emailed some people with the idea. So now I am waiting to hear back. And I want to be obedient to God's pulling (well pushing) me out of my comfort zone. But I am terrified. What if I mess up? Am I committing myself? Just so many things. But if this is where he leads I will follow (mostly) willingly. That is the dream path right now. Where it leads I don't know.

Finding the Why


So I have told you my dream. And the changes that have occurred. But the why is a little harder. Why do I want to write and encourage others? Why do I want to stay home with my children? Why? 
I want to write and encourage others because there was no one I knew personally doing it for me. There are a lot of great websites and blogs that encourage, please don't get  me wrong. But it didn't feel like they were written to me- to a mom who struggles everyday. And I know that right now that isn't really what I am writing about but I am working on it.
 I want to stay home with my children because there is so much going on in the world that I want to control their exposure to them. I want to have time with them that I haven't had before. I want to make memories. I want them to know that they matter. 
 Why is your dream what it is? Why do you do what you do? Why?

Monday, April 1, 2013

Skipping Rocks

I don't know about your boys but my boys love to skip rocks. If they see water and a rock that's it, they are trying to skip rocks. I think it is just something that they do. They jump at it. They enjoy it.