Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Babble: To Blurt Out Impulsively, Chatter

Ok. As much as I want to engage in some political bashing (good riddance, Senator Arlen Spector) I will try to refrain myself! Especially since my last post, in which I decided that for me personally, getting too engrossed in the daily political debates is not healthy for my mindset; I turn grouchy. And, I had no idea where to stick the commas in that long run-on sentence. It's past my bedtime.

So, I will instead share some random thoughts with you. because I know you care. because my site meter has been in the single digits. (sniff) whatever.

1. #2 went to her first ortho consult today. Well, technically it was her 1st consult at the actual orthodontist who will be doing her treatment. Funny how #1 got her braces off last month and now without even a month off between payments, I'll be signing away on the dotted line for a few more years of the equivalent of a small car payment. Well, maybe more like a motorcycle payment, but still.....

2. I have been fighting off the plague that has ravaged my family for the last 3 weeks. We all basically got it on and off for about 5 days. The Poor Husband is about a day ahead of me. It is dreadful and I feel like a horrible mom because I basically told my kids to suck it up when they continued to complain of upset bellies. I thought I had a bunch of wimps on my hands. No, they had a clueless mother on their hands. For that I will buy them much ice cream.

3. Arlen Spector...oh, nevermind.......

4. The Pink Pows won their second softball game tonight (#2 and #3's team). They are just so fun to watch. Not as fun as soccer, but more fun than last year when all #3 did was stare longingly at the concession stand from left field and beg me to get her a hot dog between innings.

5. I bought some new anti-wrinkle, fix-my-face lotion stuff today for the first time ever. I'll let you know how it works. It is supposed to also make me look like I've had a "touch of sun". It was $18 and it better be worth it....Say Anything is the only person I've ever met who really looks "touched by the sun" when she uses those sunless tanning products....I look more like I've been "slapped upside the head with orange face paint" when I've made previous attempts.

6. The first rough cut is ready of our film we worked on and it was well received by B's film class and professor. I can't wait to see it! He said they all thought it was amazing. He isn't done with the editing, but I'll figure out someway to post it when it is ready to be unleashed on the public. But, only if I don't look like a dork and there is a pretty significant chance that is going to happen. So, please don't be out there (all 6 of you) holding your breath.

7. Lastly, I may need to give up the dream of losing 10 pounds before I get my hair cut...on my good hair days I look like an overweight country western singer and on the bad hair days I look like Ozzy Osbourne. Me thinks it is time for a change......I think I'll throw in a pedicure, too while I'm at it, so my feet are sandal-ready when my face is "touched by the sun".

Monday, April 27, 2009

American Idols?

They honored and worshiped God, but not exclusively—they also appointed all sorts of priests, regardless of qualification, to conduct a variety of rites at the local fertility shrines. They honored and worshiped God, but they also kept up their devotions to the old gods of the places they had come from.....2 Kings 17:33 (The Message)

I was driving down the road the other day when this thought hit me. There are so many people that go to church and worship God, but still maintain the other "idols" in their lives. I asked the Lord to search my heart...have I done this? What have I put before Him?

We typically talk about idols in reference to religion (picture little Buddhas) or in reference to addictions (such as alcohol and drug abuse), but I wonder can we make our "schedules" an idol? What about our families? Can we make the mistakes of the past an idol that we do not even realize we are worshiping (as the scripture says, keeping up devotions to the gods of the places they had come from)? Worship means we meditate on and devote ourselves to something, it takes up our time, it consumes our thoughts. It begins to influence us, whether in a good way or bad.

It is easy to gloss over the Israelites in the Bible when they made their idols and worshiped them because we think that has little or no application to our lives today. No one I know has a golden calf in their backyard! But, yet, society continues to put more of an emphasis on things and people of this world, and less of an acknowledgment that God is the glue holding our existance together. Lately, I'm trying to be careful what I watch and listen to...because what we behold is what we eventually become. And, listening to political rants and doom and gloom newscasting is just going to leave me empty and fearful.

What else do we put before the promises and presence of God? Short of locking myself in my house and avoiding all other activity, how do I make sure that I have not created an idol out of something that was once innocent? Your thoughts?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Getting Back In Touch With My Inner-Cheerleader

Last night was #1 and #2's cheerleading banquet to celebrate the end of their competition season. I somehow ended up being the "coordinator" for it, so I ran around most of the last 24 hours picking up and preparing food for 17 girls and 3 coaches. We had it at Paramount Sports Complex and it was an overnight starting at 9pm last night. We had so much fun as we danced and we tumbled and I forgot for a few hours that I was a 39-year old (and, this morning my sore muscles are paying that price)! I stayed until about 12:40 am this morning then left to go back at 6:30 am to get them up, feed them breakfast and get them out the door by 8 am this morning. I had to listen to #3 cry the entire ride home because we were not sleeping over....I knew I needed to get SOME sleep and 5 hours was better than the hour that most of the girls and coaches got! Yes, they went to bed around 5:30-6 am and I got there at 7 am to wake them!

My house is quiet now as all three of mine have "gone to bed"...hopefully, for a good chunk of the day or they will be crank monsters!

Here are the highlights...look, I'm flipping:

Help! My socks are getting sucked off!:

#2 is flipping off the beam:


Monday, April 20, 2009

Bounce Cards, Boom Mics and Bucket Trucks....Oh My!

It's a wrap. Or, is it rap?

The Husband and I filmed a "romantic comedy" this weekend with one of the most creative, passionate, kind-hearted college students ever! He wrote the script and has been thinking about it for a year. One day he spoke at our church and had a word of knowledge about God really working on marriages and drawing couples closer together. He pointed right to where we were sitting in the church. We chuckled and wondered who in our section he was referring to, because our marriage was pretty great. And, then the storm came and we hit a rough spot. Dealing with issues and realizing that we had fallen into a "slump". Life was busy and we were getting along fine, but there were some hurts that needed to be healed and we needed to be more than each other's roommates. We worked through a lot in that time and since then have never felt closer.

Several weeks later, this bright, creative college student says he has been thinking about us and he wants us to be in this movie he wrote. And, we shared with him how the Lord had been working in our marriage and that his word of knowledge had been right on for us. That really encouraged him and confirmed that we were the couple he wanted to film. So, we prayed, talked to the girls about it and I tried to lose some weight since the camera was probably going to add 10 pounds to the 30 I already wanted to lose! I didn't lose a pound, by the way. Oh well.

We shot the footage this past weekend in a lovely town about an hour away. We were all over the place...the post office, people's houses, the streets....I thought I would feel either very cool and oooh "movie star" or I'd be freaking out from nervousness. I didn't feel either way. It was more like a play date! We worked our butts off, but we had fun. And, I enjoyed gazing into my beloved's eyes all day. We filmed about 12 hours on Saturday and 7 more on Sunday. It will then be edited into a 10-minutes movie that will be turned in as a college film project and perhaps later on, entered into film festivals. I can't wait to see it after editing when there is music! Here are some photos from the day......

This shoot fell somewhere between no-budget and low-budget! Hence, the wagon.

This was in the post office where we were informed by all the postal workers that if The Husband were a real mailman he would have been either fired or arrested for some of the things he does in this film. Who knew??

This is Micah, who played my dog, Rusty. Such a cutie. And, our amazing director also has an amazing family who fed us home-cooked food all weekend and even took our kids for walks and ice cream the final afternoon as we were trying to finish the shoot.

This was the bucket truck that hoisted our director about 30-40 feet in the air to get an amazing shot. I cannot wait to see this part on the film! I really appreciate watching movies now and seeing the different viewpoints. Of course, their equipment is so much more high tech, but I was pretty impressed with this!

I had to clean in this scene which was probably my best performance of the entire film since I do this all. the. time. at. home. Lots of practice.

This beautiful woman did my make-up and was quite simply amazing. I'm not really eating the make up sponge, I'm just surprised that someone is taking my picture. If I could afford it, I would buy every bit of make-up she put on me.

This was our favorite shot of the entire weekend. It was complicated and obviously we had to get it right on one take. We nailed it and when the director yelled, "Cut!" we all jumped up and down screaming and laughing because it was just so amazing. We did end up doing it a total of 3 times from different angles, and each time was so fun! The Husband was a good sport about it and we used warm water!

All in all I learned so much about film versus stage acting and I got to hang out with some very talented people. I really enjoy acting (although, I still think I like directing just a tad better) and it felt good to do this. And, my co-star was such a hottie!!

Friday, April 17, 2009

I Don't Think Even Calgon Can Help Me

I'm waiting for a reality show casting for "women who used to be completely normal who have lost their minds in the insanity of their crazy schedules".

Okay....maybe completely normal is a stretch for me, but still.....

I'm going to let you in on a little secret (don't you love when people blog that? As if it is just me and my computer who know the secret and not any random person on the PLANET who somehow ends up reading this). The Husband and I are filming a movie this weekend. Oh yeah. I'm like Hannah Montana with my secret double life.

Well, not really.....cause I'm not exactly famous.

We are acting in a short film written, produced and directed by a very talented up and coming take Hollywood by storm PSU student.

I have a make-up person, thank you very much.

Which is a good thing because I got my eyebrows waxed on Monday and the Holiday Hair woman ripped my skin off. I'm not kidding. For the first time in the history of waxing my eyebrows I have a 1/2 inch scab just under my eyebrow that looks like I perhaps sneezed really hard while applying my mascara. Look out America's Next Top Model......

(Okay, so I'll get to the point of my post because I have to go dye the gray out of my hair....I only pray I don't turn it blue for filming tomorrow)

I am wayyy too busy. Like, even for ME. My standard of "busy" is different than the average standard of busy. This week I have found myself cleaning up bodily fluids, taking kids to assorted practices, try outs, and concerts. All while I have leaped tall buildings in a single bound, done my taxes and almost blew up my microwave.

We were running late to school one morning and my sleep deprived self realized I had not packed #3's lunch, so I asked #2 and #3 to do it right about the time we should be pulling out of the driveway. #1 had put the peanut butter in the fridge (no idea why????) so the girls could not spread it on the bread. In my frenzy (and, I'm talking complete loss of all brain cells) I threw the bread with the hard clump of peanut butter in the microwave. Just grabbed the whole thing, aluminum foil and all, put it right into the microwave......and, watched the fireworks show.

It melted part of the door, but the microwave still thankfully works. I made the mistake of telling my co-workers as I obsessed throughout the day of how ugly my door looks now that I melted it. I decided to just stick a post-it note over the burn marks and try to forget what I had done, but my co-workers....well.....they like to have a little fun:

You really can't get the full effect of how many items in my cube were covered in foil. The funny thing is that they spelled "microwave" wrong so I talked with a Swedish accent all day. That will teach them to make fun of me......

It's been crazy, that's all I can say. My head is spinning with trying to figure out how to get everyone where they need to go every minute of the day from sun up to well past sun down! On top of that, I have to remember my lines for the movie, to feed the children and to shave my legs. Oh, and not to put foil in the microwave.

Monday, April 13, 2009


We were out of town on Easter weekend and had a wonderful, refreshing time together as a family. We decided to sort of do our own thing for "church" on Sunday since we were away.

We read the story of Jesus and the cross and talked about "sacrifice". Earlier that morning at the bed and breakfast we were staying in, #1 had wanted more strawberries so I cut my last one in half and gave it to her. I explained to the girls that even though it was a small gesture, that was a sacrifice. I told them it makes me feel good to do things like that for them because it shows my love, sort of like when Jesus endured the cross for "the joy set before Him...." The Husband and I challenged the girls to offer up sacrifices to others, not because Jesus expects us to do it, but because of the love He put in us should flow out of us.

Well, 24 hours later Jesus decided to test me in this object lesson. And, it had nothing to do with strawberries.

We arrived home late last night to GAS being very ill with a stomach virus. Out of respect for her I'll spare all the gory details. I felt so bad for her and then so bad for me because I had to clean it all up! Armed with paper towels and bathroom cleaner, down on my hands and knees for the third time today, almost weeping out of frustration, I felt like the Lord said "I have given you the grace for this....it's like the sacrifice you described yesterday. I see what you are doing and I am going to give you the joy to endure it". And, He did exactly that.

I ended up calling an ambulance to come and get GAS because I needed to take her to the emergency room and was unable to even get her down the hallway, much less out to the car. She is back home now, hydrated with fluids and sleeping in a bed with clean sheets and blankets. And, it was a joy to do it for her. Thank you, Lord!

Daddy's Little Helpers

I was thinking.

God could just stretch out His hand and fix everything if He wanted to. 'Cause He's God.

But, He lets us help Him. Not because He needs the help, but because He wants to connect with us in the process.

When I bake brownies I ask my girls to help. Not because I need the help, I'm perfectly capable of making brownies all by myself. And, even though they make a mess when they crack the eggs, we usually have a good time working together and the finished product is delicious.

Isn't God like that, too? He encourages us help Him, even when we make a mess sometimes, because the experience draws us closer to Him and the outcome is something we can be proud of.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Progress Report

I forgot that #2 had a rug on her floor...we haven't seen it much since we moved in! It's usually covered in an assortment of clothes and hair products. She actually re-arranged her room all by herself, although, we are having a bit of a disagreement about the lamp cord that is stretched right where her desk chair is!

The "junk drawer" before

The "junk drawer" after (thanks, #1)

It was a productive day. I know I had heaped a lot of expectations on our spring cleaning day and, of course, I did not finish everything I intended to do.

But, we did throw in a trip for new shoes, socks and a cute new purse for me since the one I have now is ridiculously normal sized and I need industrial size. Oh, and the new Hannah Montana movie soundtrack was in our cart, too. As promised!

Then, things went terribly wrong and #3 threw up outside next to our front door. That left me with the dilemma of getting #1 to church for drama and #2 (and what to do with #3??) to softball practice....all at the same time....while The Husband was working....and every person I could think of to carpool with did not answer their phones (I'm going to block my number next time!).

Does Calgon still take us away???

#3 lasted for 15 minutes at softball and then I left her with GAS while I ran #1 to church for drama. Then, after picking up #2 and a friend from softball they came back and jumped on the trampoline while #3 spewed out of both ends in the bathroom.

Sweet nibblets.

SO, you can imagine I'm not really up for finishing the playroom "spring cleaning" right now. I'm afraid to be more than 3 steps away from #3 at any given time. And, I'm just not going to think about the changing of the seasonal clothes. I'm ready to go back to the "just buy everything new" theory I entertained in my last post.

I do have one really clean bathroom floor, toilet and rugs that I didn't plan to work on today. I'm praying my sweet girl is healed from this awful stomach thing and that no one else gets it! Spring Cleaning - Phase 2 will just have to wait!

My Tackle It Top 5

It is spring cleaning time, people! I plan to enlist the help of my children this year since I have buttered them all up with just having a sleep over. In the event that isn't enough, I will dangle the new Hannah Montana movie soundtrack like a carrot in front of a stubborn donkey.

All I know, is that it's gonna happen. One way or another. It can be pleasant or painful, but it's gonna happen.

Here is my TOP Five I want to have accomplished when my head hits the pillow tonight:

1. The kid's rooms. Their idea of cleaning is throwing things in drawers, closets, corners of rooms, behind beds and doors, in their sister's rooms, or in plastic bags. Their scam is about to be exposed today. I will only be offering direction; however, they will be doing all the work. The playroom is also considered theirs and it is the place I go that the kids can always count on getting a lecture afterwards. I have a love/hate relationship with the playroom. I love it right after I clean and re-organize it and then 24 hours later when the kids and their friends trash it I hate it and decide I will remove everything but the couch, the cat and the TV and sell it all at a yard sale. I will then take the yard sale money and go to the spa. That sounds fair, doesn't it? Sadly, the kids will need my help today with this room.

2. My "junk" drawer. I open it and it makes me want to run screaming from the house.

3. My 3 desks. Yes, three. I have not put anything into our filing cabinet since we moved in July 2007. Stacks are rubber banded together and oozing. Everyone sing with me....burn, Baby, burn....disco inferno......these will all make lovely additions to our fire pit.

4. School drawer. The only part of my home life that stays organized, but we need to do a little file transferring since the drawer barely shuts. By far, the easiest task of the day, but just as necessary as the others. I start to go wayyyy downhill once May strikes and I just want school to be over more than the kids do. Some papers may make it in the folders and many probably won't.

5. I saved the worst for last. The task that I dread 2 times every year. The changing of the seasonal clothes. When the kids were younger and I stayed home each bin would be neatly labeled and folded. Now, I have to pull the cat off the opened bins of mixed size clothes that I shoved in there when I was stressed out the season before. It's like a treasure hunt, because usually a library book or a Hershey kiss is mixed in there, too. I'm just not sure I have it in me to do this today....I may have to save it for Monday. This is when I wish I could just donate everything at the end of each season and go buy all new things. Now, wouldn't that be nice?

Well, it is time to focus. I may post "before" and "after" junk drawer pictures just for fun. Anyone else out there spring cleaning?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Now What?

We just returned from a weekend youth retreat and it was quite a time of connecting with our Heavenly Father, as well as the other people there.

The hard thing about these weekends is going back to "normal" life and applying not just what we learned, but what we experienced. It can be a difficult transition.

This particular retreat was unique in that some of the leaders took vans of kids into the nearby towns and set them loose to pray for people in grocery stores and shops. They had some really cool stories to tell about how people were so grateful and blown away that a young person would do such a thing!

My prayer is that they continue to have the boldness and confidence to do that in their schools and anywhere else outside the four walls of the church. People are desperate for a genuine touch from Christ, not just a shallow, formal religious experience. Please pray that this weekend was a launching pad for this generation to show the world how valued they are by our God!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Celebrating My Birthday with the People I Love Most

Yesterday was my birthday and we traveled down to Sight and Sound in Lancaster to see Behold the Lamb. It was very powerful. They really brought to life the personalities and relationships during the time Jesus performed His miracles until He was seated at the right hand of the Father.

My eyes were glued to the stage and I especially enjoyed watching Jesus minister to the people. So much of it struck me as applicable to life now....the people shunning the blind man and the disciples arguing over who is greater....wow! That's us today! And, through it all, Jesus poured out His amazing LOVE, wisdom and peace. He didn't rant and rave (except at the temple, but that was righteous anger). It terrified me to think of what would have happened if He was unable to resist temptation...even just one time. Can I even get through one day with strength like that? Can anyone?

All in all it was a wonderful afternoon/evening spent with my family and drawing closer to Jesus.