Friday, January 31, 2014

My 30's

I left my 30's behind a few days back. I can honestly say I looked forward to turning 40, I can't specifically say why. I guess maybe people will take me more seriously? Ha - if only. 

Well, did I learn anything from my 30's? Let's see if I can think of 30 things I learned -- 

  1. What you lose in the "hotness" of your 20's is made up by more self confidence in your 30's. Who knew? 
  2. Happiness doesn't depend on your partner being the right person. It depends on if you are right with God.
  3. Cliques don't go away. So what? 
  4. Learning to speak up for yourself doesn't necessarily get easier, just get better at articulating why you should be able to demand better treatment
  5. Don't squat with your spurs on. In other words, quit doing those things that are detrimental to your life. Thanks to Roy Rogers for the quote.
  6. When the Bible says to love yourself like your neighbor, that doesn't mean to ignore and avoid yourself like you do your neighbors. LOL. No, God wants us to accept ourselves and treat our body-mind-soul just as He intended. 
  7. Unforgiveness is a sin. Forgive others. Forgive yourself. God didn't send His Son to die for nothing. 
  8. Saying that, If you don't know Jesus, you might want to check into that. Just sayin'
  9. I have done things I swore I would never do. Never let your boundary line slack just because you are confident that you would "NEVER'' do something like THAT. We are fallible human beings and the devil is very crafty at using our "nevers"
  10. Conversely, I have promised to do many things that have never materialized. Words are cheap. Make them mean something - watch them carefully.
  11. Regrets are worthless unless they spur you to change
  12. Just because I lose touch with family or friends, or they with me, doesn't mean there isn't a deep and abiding love. I can reconnect with people in an instant. Love never fails
  13. It is possible to have a piece of yourself walking around in the flesh. My son is my "mini-me".  I never thought I would have kids, much less LOVE this child, this man child, so much. Wow, to even think how much of a piece of me is out there. It doesn't seem possible. 
  14. This isn't an original thought - but so true: Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is optional. Some days I wonder what side of the coin I am on.
  15. I remember thinking I had to act big & bad in order to be accepted. I would like to say I've gotten rid of all of that. Maybe most of it. Guess what? No one gives a shit. Get over it.
  16. Jesus paid it all. ALL. Hard to believe He could cover that much of me, but He did it. Thank you, Jesus. Redeemed.
  17. It's never to late to start, but one day it will be too late to finish. Be sure to finish well.
  18. On one hand, it wasn't worth all the stupid stuff I did. On the other hand, .... well. On the other hand, I am a really good example of a bad example. 
  19. Sometimes, knowing when to shut up is the greatest gift. 
  20. Letting go and letting God means that sometimes you have to leave things to Him instead of trying to fix it yourself.
  21. Life is really good if you want it to be. I know that is an easy answer in a hard world, but how many times are we sleeping in a bed of our own making?
  22. Crazy family and normal family are the same thing. If they are crazy, it means you are crazier. If they are normal, well -- you are crazy for not seeing it. The benchmark is you. haha. 
  23. You're never "done". There is always more work, more kids (grandkids), more learning. The best thing to do is buckle up and be willing to tow the line. It's coming, might as well enjoy it.
  24. Spanish is hard
  25. Getting old is not for the faint of heart. Getting old is for bad-ass people. It takes guts. 
  26. Wild Turkey American Honey. On the rocks. 
  27. African coffee - trust me on this one. Life is too short for bad coffee
  28. It's really hard to "die to self". I suck at this one, actually. 
  29. Sometimes, we do what we think is right and suffer for it. Guess what? It's worth it. Have a passion for your "cause" and trust God with the rest.
  30. If you have read this far, thanks. My number 30 is: all of this is BS and I am full of hot air. I am sure I have learned better things than this, but I am tired and have a few #26's under the belt. Haha. Love you guys. 

Friday, January 3, 2014

One More Thing

I keep forgetting to post everyday stuff that seems remarkable to me. I will hopefully be able to look back on this and count on it for some memories, since mine is horrible. 

So this is awesome:

I am at the nursing home the other day and I can hear Isaac laughing his butt off down the hallway. I follow his laugh down the hallway and I peek around the corner. 

He is sitting on the couch at the gossip corner. He has two old ladies on one side and one on his other. Across, there are two more old ladies on the other couch. 

He is talking and laughing at the same time, laughing so hard that he can barely talk and tears are coming from his eyes. You have to know Isaac, he OFTEN has a story that brings him to fits and giggles. Happy kid, that boy. 

All the old ladies around him are just listening intently and grinning ear to ear. Now mind you, about half of these ladies have moderate to severe dementia and don't even know their own name. 

So I pop my head fully around the corner and he sees me. Now he is trying not to laugh, but not succeeding very well. I asked him, "Are you talking about something they want to talk about our are you telling a Minecraft story?"

He can barely get out that he is telling them what happened on the video of epic police and army fails (a popular YouTube video he watches - and it is funny). 

Well, all-business Sergeant Mother comes out and starts to tell him that maybe he should be talking about a subject THEY want to talk about, like their kids or grandkids. But a split second before I could spit it out, I really SAW the situation. They were ALL grinning. Like star-struck school kids with glee and joy. They were getting a kick out of his laughter and his youthfulness. I am sure none of them wanted to talk about the snotty kids who dumped them in the nursing home! 

I shut my mouth. He was bringing them joy. I am not sure they even understood what he was saying or even able to follow the story line, but he was bringing them joy. 

Shut up mother. That kid, wowI love that kid. He is awesome. I should've taken a picture but it is against government regs. 

Love you guys, thought I would share. 

Giving Up When You Know You Should

Sometimes I am so stubborn. Well, maybe a lot of the times I am so stubborn. 

Homeschool isn't working. I don't know what made me think I could possibly hold down 2 part time jobs and homeschool. Isaac has had a great time with me and he has received some fantastic experience volunteering at the nursing home while I work.

But the time has come for me to admit I can not give him everything he needs. As the math gets harder and he needs more detailed grammar, I simply cannot give him the hands on required to get him where he needs to be. 

I hate this because I really wanted this for him. The public school system is failing on so many different levels. The bureaucracy won't let the teachers teach and the kids are flat out scary. 

The only thing I can give my son that they can't is to cover him in prayer. I will see about getting him in our charter school, hopefully at least for next fall. Then I can supplement him with reading, etc. 

Also, and I hate to say this out loud, but I am contemplating quitting the pregnancy center. God hasn't specifically given me the go-ahead, so I can't really say I am considering it yet. But I feel so ineffective and  quite frankly, it is eating my lunch. My position isn't a paid position and losing that income really hurt us. Now with the bigger house payment (and the other house STILL not rented out) we have to really mind our p's & q's. We're ok, we eat and the bills are paid. But man, is it tight. I should be able to squeak when I walk. haha.

Anyway, there it is. Off my chest. I AM NOT SUPERWOMAN! See, not so hard to say, right? Trying not to let the enemy call me a failure and instead say that God has great plans for me, plans for peace and not disaster. I have to trust His Word and realize everything has a season, and just listen to what He wants for me. I'm not a failure for letting go. I would've been a failure for not trying when I really thought He wanted me to do both of these things. 

Will keep you updated on these two. Please pray for God's hand in both of these situations. 

Love you guys so much, Melissa

New Year

Don't you love how philosophical people become at the start of the New Year? Everyone has a resolution, or some saying that profoundly impacted their last year... or maybe a new motto for the new year. 

I don't. Resolution? None. Profoundness of any type? Zilch. New Motto? Don't make me laugh. 

Not that I don't admire all of "those" people. Ha! I say that like I haven't attempted each and every one of those things. No, I admire those pie in the sky people. 

I'm still sick so maybe my sarcasm is showing through. But really, I'm 40 this year (yay for me, never thought I would make it this far. I DESERVE 40). 

It's just -- do you ever really see any of that last? Really? How many times have I tried to be a better person? More fit, more healthy, better emotionally adjusted, a better steward with my money, more spiritually connected with my Savior. All of those things. 

I'm not saying I completely failed at them, because I do believe I am "better" at most things than I was say, 20 years ago. But saying I made a complete life change, a complete turnaround, because of a new year would be a lie. 

I am in process, just like everyone else. I make progress, I fall down, fall behind, get back up and keep trying. I still weigh what I weighed when I stepped out of the hospital with Isaac. He is going to be 15. I guess the only visible "change" that seems to have stuck is on January 1st I celebrated 16 years (mostly) smoke free. I had a few times where I would go buy a pack, smoke a few and throw them out - and one night of beer where I smoked. But I have no desire to buy more or do another night of smoking. The other visible change is I am still a Christian after being an atheist. Let me tell you, God has A LOT of work yet to do on this sinful heart. 

So, I am not necessarily being cynical about resolutions or motto's. I suppose they motivate a person for at least a month, maybe with a renewed effort before bikini season. I guess trying is better than not trying.

What I am trying to say is that after 40 years, I have learned that true change doesn't come from a trite saying but from a true partnership with God to see what He wants to change in us, and then letting Him have the reigns. I try to do that and fail in utter misery. He wants all of me and I only give Him what is easy for me to handle. He is a faithful Daddy though. He keeps trying and little by little I respond and give in. I look ahead and hope that the next 40 years gives Him enough time to finish a good work in me.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Monday, November 18, 2013

Yes, No, Maybe So

(1) Therefore I, the prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received, (2) with all humility and gentleness, with patience, accepting one another in love, (3) diligently keeping the unity of the Spirit with the peace that binds us. (4) There is one body and one Spirit - just as you were called to one hope at your calling - (5) one Lord, one faith, one baptism, (6) one God and Father of all, who is above and through all and in all. Ephesians 4:1-6

I urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received. 

What is my calling? Child of Christ, Wife, Mom, Women's Ministry, Employee

Am I walking worthy? Am I walking with ALL humility? ALL gentleness? ALL patience? Accepting one another (others) with love?

Wow. I cannot honestly say that I can even finish out the first verse. Not even close. You know when you hear a Word from God? I do, then I argue, I repent, I relent . . . but do I obey? Do I?

Me (thinking to myself not long ago): This house is so big, it has an echo

God: It needs to be filled up with little ones

Me: I don't have little ones. I can't have little ones. I am past that almost

God: You know what I mean

Me: I can't even do a good job with what I have. How in the world will I do a good job with more?

God: You rely on yourself way too much

Me: I try to rely on You for everything. I think I do

God: Do you?

Me: I try?

God: Do you? Do you trust Me?

Me: Not entirely, by the way You make it sound. I don't walk worthy, especially with humility and gentleness. Forget patience. I can't do it.

God. You're right, YOU can't. You can't do a thing without Me.

Me: Where am I supposed to get kids from? It takes too much money to adopt. What if I get kids that have serious issues?

God: Do you trust me? You don't think I can do it?

Me: silence

God: All you have to do is trust Me. Surrender every part of your life to Me and let Me do it for you. The biggest step is you. The biggest hurdle, the biggest obstacle, the biggest excuses. It all starts with you. Just give it up.

Me: I don't know how to do that, obviously. Not completely anyway. Not the hard stuff.

God: I won't give you what you can't handle, knowing you aren't ready\prepared to take on the task. When I do give it to you, then you will know that I know you are ready. Do you trust Me?

Me: yes

God: then be willing to wait. Not all questions need an answer right now. 

Me: yes, Lord

Monday, November 11, 2013


Finally couldn't stand hormone hair anymore so I chopped it off!!

Sunday, November 3, 2013


The title of the post: laughter. Why? To think I would actually keep up with this on a daily, weekly or even monthly basis is laughable. Oh well. I think I can manage quarterly or bi-annually. One of these days my life won't be so crazy - I think. 

How have y'all been? I (we) have been pretty good. Just like everyone I know, busy, busy. Since the last post (September 19th) we STILL do not have the old house ready to rent out. With only a few hours on Saturday to work on it, the whole process is moving slow. Carlos came home from college for a fall break a few weeks back. He is doing good and he has his first girlfriend. We have not met her yet, but they seem to have the same goals and values in life, so our prayer is that neither one detracts the other too much. 

Do you ever feel like you have about a million balls in the air, struggling to keep them up? Most days are like that for me. Work is too busy, but I can't afford to quit. Homeschooling is ok, but always that little question in the back of my mind - - is it enough to get him where he needs to be? Am I doing the right thing? Pregnancy center is good, but those same insecurities plague me. Some days I want to crawl into my cave and just give up. 

On a side note, I've been doing a Bible study on Ephesians that has really encouraged me. 
They played this by Priscilla Shirer. She is pretty dynamic. Be encouraged:

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells . . .

Did you just sing that in your head? I did. It's the 19th of September already and I can't believe it. I wrote a check the other day and put "July" in the date. I crossed that out after realizing that it was August. Nope. Scratch that too. It's September. Where did it go? Christmas is RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER. There. I said it. I know, it's too early. But guess what? It's going to get here whether we like it or not. I'm beginning to wonder if we will ever actually be ready and prepared for decorating, gift giving, etc. 

I asked my co-worker if I had even been present at work. She assured me yes, I had been there physically. She kindly makes excuses to butter my bread and says I've just been preoccupied with all of the house stuff. She's sweet, that one. And she is leaving. If I didn't love her so much I would hate her. We are losing a very valuable employee. Hopefully we will continue to knit together once a week. She is trying to teach me, but I'm no so sure I will ever even finish a simple scarf. Anyway. 

Jeesh. What a week. It's Thursday and tomorrow, thank God - right on time, is Friday. I am so very tired and just need to tie a knot in the end of my rope and hang on. This house is everything I could ever dream of, but boy did it need some TLC. Next week we have to try and get the old house ready to rent. Or sell, if Leo and I can come to an agreement on that. Neither one of us is 100% committed to sell, but I don't see how we can physically keep up with two properties. Three if you count Mary's. Great problem to have, I know. I shouldn't complain like AT ALL because so many of my friends and co-workers are going though some very tough stuff right now. I am GRATEFUL. Very, very conscience of the fact that only God could've pulled this off financially. He did, none of it was us I promise. But, ready for a break all the same.

Thinking I might take next semester off too. Not sure yet. As of right now I am so tired just ready to stop all together, but if I can squeeze in at least one class, maybe I can keep the momentum going. I have no idea how Jeannie Danielle did it with three kids, a husband and a job to top it off. Wow. That's called stamina right there. 

Enough rambling. Good night and I promise pictures soon.