Monday, June 1, 2009

"Do You Have a Headache?"

Have you ever woken up in a relatively calm, peaceful mood (i.e. tired because you stayed up too late), and maybe you made a comment to someone (i.e. your husband) that you were enjoying the sounds of the birds outside (because you were still waking up) when someone (i.e. your husband) tried to turn on the radio, and because of the benign comment, someone (i.e. your husband) says in a sarcastically (your opinion) concerned way, “Do you have a headache?” and “Are you in a bad mood?” and “How late did you stay up?”, and somehow those comments (you can’t imagine why), put you in a bad mood?

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Can You Say Gross?

I went outside today to spend some time with the dogs and play fetch. As soon as I let them out, our four year old large white Golden went directly to a small retaining wall of boulders next to our house and started sniffing around in the crevices.

I figured he smelled some kind of critter that had been or was still hiding in one of the holes. So I kept saying in my high little, talk to the puppy voice "What is it, puppy...get it, puppy...what did you find puppy?" And he was so excited that I was playing the game so he kept running to me and running back to the holes.

So eventually, I'm thinking "OK, Lassie...your trying to show me something." So went over to see if I could see what he had found. I was then thinking he had lost some kind of nasty toy in one of the cracks. But I couldn't see anything (and there's no way I'm sticking my hand where I can't see!)

So I went back to playing fetch with the Golden and our 4 year old German Shepherd with the rubber frisbee. I would say "Bring me the toy." And usually the Shepherd was first to chase it down and bring it back to me, and then I say, "Drop it." And he puts it at my feet. The Golden never seems to have a chance. The poor thing usually makes it there in time, but he just can't seem to be quick enough to grab it first.

So this is going on and the Golden leaves the game for a second to go back to the holes. The next thing I know, I'm clapping and saying "Bring me the toy!" and the Shepherd drops the frisbee next to me and the Golden drops a dead bird.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Honesty in Prayer

My 7 year old son and I were praying before bed the other night. I usually start and then he will interject something as it comes to him. So just before I wrapped it up, he pipes up and says, "...and thank you God that I can read really changed my life!"

I had to stop right there and ask him what he meant by "it changed his life"...I mean, this could be really deep!

He looks at me sincerely and says, "Because now I can play xbox by myself. I don't need [my 9 year old brother] there to read things to me!"

Oh well, at least he's open and honest with his God.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A Glimpse Into My Journey

I often wonder why I am here, what my mission in life is.

After DH graduated from school, we planned on him getting a job in the southern state where the rest of our family was already living. But after sending out resumes to firms in the south, DH felt impressed that maybe he should investigate firms in his hometown in the northwest. Together, after much praying and asking for signs (of course, we asked for signs...or at least I did...I mean, come on, the northwest?), we decided to "step out in faith" and follow what we felt like was God's leading.  And we still feel like God lead us there.


Since I grew up in the Bible-belt and had a Southern Baptist evangelical background for 27 or so years, I just figured this was some kind of mission trip. Of course, since I knew all the "right" answers, the do's and don'ts, how to pray, how to lead worship and sing in choir, how to read and "study" the Bible, then I was probably being sent up there to the northwest for God to use me in some way to minister for Him.

So we got involved in a small Baptist church as soon as we arrived. There aren't many Baptist churches in the northwest so I thought, ah-ha, there was my mission, to help grow a little church. I sang in the choir, then I sang with the praise team, I lead vacation bible school music, I played the piano and led the praise team for almost a year, I put my two cents into numerous Bible studies and Sunday schools, I taught preschool Sunday school...heck, I was busy for God...I was doing "His Will".  And I felt ok about everything, but not real excited about any of it. I'm a Christian, so I'm obligated to serve in the church, and if I don't enjoy it, then that is my cross to bear, right? But then...

Some friends of ours gave us the opportunity to help start a church. It was going to be a non-denominational church with the purpose of reaching out to the un-churched. So I figured, ah-ha, this must be where it has all been leading. God wants us to help lead and finance a new church that will really make a difference in people. That must be the "mission" and reason why we are here in the northwest.

So, again, I sang with the praise team, I led Bible studies, I taught children's Sunday school, I brought food to potlucks, etc. But none of it seemed fulfilling. I thought, if I were doing "God's Will", shouldn't I at least enjoy it, shouldn't I kinda look forward and not dread it, shouldn't I at least have some kind of contentment?

So we left the church. And we church hopped. Soon, we decided we just needed to find a church where they would be scripturally fed and take a break from all the "serving".

We tried the Episcopal church that DH's grandpa attended. It was great for a transition time. Our kids liked the church school, and they enjoyed getting to go to church with another family member and getting to take communion every Sunday, but we didn't feel like they were getting spiritually fed at this particular church.

Then we tried a Catholic church (our kids go to a Catholic school, and I was already attending a scripture study at one of the Catholic churches). We liked it ok there too. I knew people, the homilies (sermons) were fine, but, in the end, we didn't feel like it was the place for us at this time either.

So we tried some other churches and finally found a little church located within a small neighborhood. It was a four square church which we had no idea what that was (we had to google it, and, fortunately, nothing seemed too foreign about it). But for about 2-3 months, I cried every Sunday through the whole service.  It got to the point that when we arrived, I just automatically grabbed a handful of tissues from the back. The pastor was talking to us. And it was like God was talking to us.  Finally, I was looking forward to attending church again. And I didn't know anyone. And I didn't want to know anyone. And I didn't feel compelled to get involved or do anything but just attend church and, well, cry. And God gave me rest.


He revealed something to me through all this. Partly through the scripture study at the Catholic church and partly through attending this church and a subsequent women's retreat I went to with the church during the summer. God did not bring me there to the northwest to do anything for Him.  He brought me there to show me what He wants to do for me. He wants to give me freedom, rest, peace, contentment, love, fearlessness, joy. And, huh...who would of thought, once I decided to just sit back and receive it, I wanted to give too.

But it was with a different perspective. It was not what I could do for Him, or what I felt obligated to do because I'm a "Christian", or what I thought people expected me to do. But it was more about paying attention to what I was receiving from Him through any service or actions. Recognizing that He's the giver.

I realize I'm moving more and more outside my little Southern Baptist box, and I hope with God's grace that I can continue to see the bigger picture from His perspective. I want to see the "church" as the body of Christ that it is, not the little divisions of hands here and feet over there that we humans have made it.

And the journey goes on...

Monday, March 2, 2009

A Church Report

Yesterday, DH dropped off Jonathan (7) for Sunday School. DH said there were three little girls already there who, when they saw him, all said "Yay, Jonathan is here! He makes us laugh!"


Michael (9) attended "big church" with us instead of going to his Sunday School class. During the sermon the pastor asked a rhetorical question and Michael answered it out loud. We were sitting on the back row and the pastor heard him and mentioned it. Everyone giggled. I should not have been surprised that Michael was not embarrassed and seemed to enjoy the attention.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My Son's Self-reported Health Status

I got a call to pick up my seven year old son at school today because he had a fever. On the way home, I asked him about his symptoms. He said, "I have a weak eye and 100% temperature."

(The school had told me he had a weeping eye and a temperature of 100 degrees.)

Monday, February 9, 2009

I Took a Tumble

Last Saturday we drove to a local ski mountain to ski. I've been tired of taking the same old trails down the mountain and wanted to check out a different trail on the back side.

The silly sign said it was blue, but it was a lot harder that the other blues we'd been on all day. So since it was my big idea, I felt like I had to take the initiative and lead the way down the mountain.

We were all doing great with the kids only falling a couple of times until the very bottom where it was about to flatten out. Who put those darn trenches right across the trail! All I knew is that one minute I was skiing fast and a little out of control (which is normal for me-the out of control part), and the next minute I tumbled head over heels and landed on my back with my feet in the air (ok, all you people with your mind in the comments about that); I don't know how my skis stayed on.

I turned around quickly and waved so my family didn't think I was hurt, and I see my seven year old son come cruising down the hill towards me. As he get close, he says "Mom! Are you ok? That looked DEVESTATING!"

I was so proud of his big vocabulary word I almost forgot the pain.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Instant Coffee and Migraine Prevention

I just thought I'd do a quick report on my migraine situation. I usually got a migraine headache at least 2-3 times a week, sometimes almost everyday. I had pinpointed many different kinds of triggers, but could never stay away from all of them consistently. And I would either wake up with one or develop one by 2:00 - 3:00. I usually took Exedrin like my dad as soon as I got the sensation that one was coming on.

Early this year, I went to an internist for a high heart rate, and as an aside right before I left, mentioned my headaches. So to make a long story short, after trying a couple of things, I ended up on Lexapro (an antidepressant) based upon my past history with depression (treated with Zoloft - stayed on for about 5 years, but finally got off) and the fact that sometimes depression and migraines are related. I don't remember being aware of whether or not I had fewer migraines while on Zoloft or not, but I went down to having maybe 1-2 a week/every two weeks with the Lexapro.

But then DH had bought some instant coffee to make these instant lattes like my dad makes. And one day I decided to throw a small teaspoon full in my instant breakfast drink. I think I did it to see if it helped with my energy level. And it did. So I started doing it everyday. But I also noticed/realized that I couldn't remember the last time I had a headache. So I think it must be preventing them for the most part. So now I do it for that reason. It also works without the instant breakfast which just a cup of skim milk, a teaspoon of instant coffee, and a sweet and low (which I drink cold like my instant breakfast). I drink that if I'm having real food for breakfast. Now the only thing that I can think of is that I am not a regular coffee drinker. I don't really like hot drinks, or really the taste of coffee unless I put a bunch of sugar or cream in it, and I'm out with the girls for breakfast. So maybe it works b/c I usually just have that one teaspoon a day.

I am curious if it would work for other people. I tried to do an internet search and found a couple of mentions of people doing instant coffee shots for migraine prevention. But that sounds terribly untasty. Is untasty a word?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Mundane Ramblings

I've been trying to exercise 5 or so days a week now. Last year I did about 2 or 3, but that wasn't enough. So this morning I went to the Y again, and now I am sitting here all sweaty typing on the computer. Gross, huh? So has anyone read "Younger Next Year"? It's aimed towards people coming up to, or in, retirement age, but we figured it doesn't hurt to get a jump on things. Anyway, it's what is motivating us right now. Besides the fact that DH doesn't want to follow in his dad's footsteps and die young.

Outside, we are socked in with some kind of "inversion" thing. Basically, the cold is held in, but it is also damp like we are in a cloud/fog. Seems colder than when it is dry. We saw the sun here in the valley for a bit yesterday, and I hear if you get up the mountain a bit, you will be above the fog/cloud and see blue skies.

My dogs are quiet right now. I suppose someday I will need to post a picture of them. They are quite cute if not somewhat annoying at times.

It's so quiet here, I actually heard the heater come on. Really, I should go shower and get something done.

As I mentioned in my facebook status, I'm in the process of organizing and decluttering. I never can do it right. You are supposed to do little baby step and maybe one room at a time or whatever. But I always start in one room, but one thing leads to another and I've got the whole house turned upside down. Then it is overwhelming and I get burned out. So "focus, focus, focus". I say that to my kids all the time to. I wonder where they get the gene for being easily distracted?

The kids are just fun these days. I have separated their rooms (which, of course, currently look like tornadoes hit while we are sorting through everything). DS(7) is quite proud of himself that he has slept in a room by himself for 3 days now. And while DH(9) was looking forward to getting his own room, he is actually the one mourning the loss of having a companion in the room at night.

Ok, I know. Go take a shower...I am freezing here in the basement with this layer of moisture on me. The aforementioned heater, does not do justice in the basement.