Monday, September 29, 2008

Back to Proverbs 31

It's been awhile since we've looked at Proverbs 31, so I thought it was time to get back to it. Here's a summary:

v. 1-10: King Lemuel's mom is busy teaching him how to be a ruler. Basically, be wary of women, use wisdom in choosing your friends and advisors, and avoid drunkenness. Speak up to defend the rights of the poor, the needy, and those who cannot speak for themselves. Judge fairly.

v.1-18: Mom now tells Lemuel what to look for in a wife. A woman who loves him, works with eager hands, provides for her family, has a mind for business and delegation, and is creative.

Proverbs 31:19 - In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers.

I suppose it's time for me to pull out my sewing machine, eh? Well, not sure the text is telling us we have to be expert seamstresses, but in context of the previous verses it is telling us to get to work. We should be actually "working" to take care of our families.

Uggh, why'd I have to write that? I really dislike working around the home (so glad I don't have a web-cam or you could see what an obvious statement that is!) It can be pretty boring to do dishes, laundry, and cleaning all day. Yet, this is a good reminder to have a good attitude while accomplishing these mundane tasks that we are called to do in order to care for our family.

We've seen this Proverbs 31 woman selecting wool and flax, working vigorously with eager hands, shopping in the markets for imported foods, getting up before the family to prepare for the day, delegating tasks, and building a home-based business! Who knew you could find all that in just a few verses from the Bible?!

Now we see her spinning yarn and later we will see her making items for her family, to give to the needy and to sell at the market. She's quite an amazing woman, isn't she?

Sometimes it is hard for us as women to compare ourselves to the Proverbs 31 woman. It can be a little overwhelming to see what this ancient woman was able to accomplish in comparison to what we may do as modern women. I think the general gist that we are to take away from this, is to be creative in how we care for our family.

Do what you can do. Look at the talents God has blessed you with and consider how you can use them to bless your family. It may just be planting a few tomatoes in your backyard, selling some items on e-bay, cleaning out the closet to donate items or listening to Hubby when he tells you to actually spend the grocery money on groceries this time. (I'm still trying to figure out why he keeps telling me that every week...!)

So, keep your hands to the distaff and start spinning, ladies!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Random Things

I was tagged by my friend over at Genesis Moments.

Here are six random things about myself:

1. I am "5 foot 2 - eyes of blue!"

2. With red hair I look quite Irish, but I am actually 1/2 Polish, 1/4 Irish, 1/8 German and 1/8 English.

3. In an unplanned act of irony (or perhaps stupidity) I wore my "Polish/Irish: Pierogis/Potatoes" shirt to my Weight Watcher's meeting the other day. Fortunately, after the lady commented on the not so healthy foods emblazoned on my chest in their respective country's colors, it was a good weigh in:)

4. When we were kids, my brother and I used to make bouncy balls out of scotch tape and water.

5. My family claims that we are related to Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross.

6. I just called my Senators and House Representative for the first time ever regarding the bail out bill they are debating.

I am tagging:

The Hand Clan
Drinking From My Saucer
God's Grace In Practice

1. Link to the person who tagged you. 2. Post the rules on the blog. 3. Write six random things about yourself. 4. Tag a few people at the end of your post. 5. Let each person know he or she has been tagged.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Waking Up Is Hard To Do *updated*

"Waking up is hard to do, la, la, la, la, la!" That's pretty much our theme song 'round the den these days.

Yesterday morning when Hubby tried to get Lil' Buddy up he said, "Time to get up, Bud. I thought you wanted to get up at 7 a.m." "Yup" he replied. "Well, it's 10 after." His response, "I was rounding."

This morning our son was still asleep and Hubby called up the stairs. "C'mon Bud, it's time to get up." A groggy answer from the dark hallway, "But it's not seven yet." Hubby retorted, "I was rounding!"

The cubs seem to be spending way too much time on homework so consequently their bedtime ends up being closer to 9:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. instead of 8:30 p.m.! This makes for some rather groggy mornings!

Yesterday, both of them went a bit overboard on their homework assignments. I think I got myself a couple of overachievers here.

Pulling in to our driveway from the bus stop, Buddy burst into tears at the realization that he had forgotten his history book. After quite a few attempts at consoling him, I finally convinced him to call a friend to see if he could borrow the book for the evening if his friend had finished the assignment. The alternative was to get to school early when he would have about a half hour to do the work. This suggestion only brought wails of, "But that won't be enough time and I'll get an "F"."

Fortunately, we were able to avoid more tears by borrowing the book and he happily worked on it the rest of the evening. Since I was busy with my own study and he was contentedly working as usual, it didn't occur to me that he was still doing the same assignment at 9 p.m. My question to him was, "Why was your friend done at 4:30 p.m. and you're taking so long?" His response, "I think I'm doing too much notes." Yaaaah, I think so! That'll be a doozy of a 5th grade history test to study for tomorrow.

Darlin' who loves to write had an assignment to write a memoir of a specific event in her life. She has thrown herself into that assignment with much enthusiasm over the past week or so. Being in 7th grade, she's been pretty independent with her homework, bringing home the usual straight A's. All this to explain why I was quite surprised when asked to proofread a 10 page paper! I probably would have curbed her enthusiasm a bit if I had been more aware prior to late last night that she was writing a small novel. Despite all our efforts, Hubby and I could not find any information on guidelines for this particular paper (ie how long was it really supposed to be? I'm guessing a couple pages!) In fact, Darlin' was shocked at the suggestion that some of her classmate may only be writing a page. Oh, well, live and learn. At least it was a good read!

Well, I can't complain about having two exceptional students who take their elementary and junior high studies very seriously, but I suppose I can have a good chuckle every now and then!

*updated below*
Thought I'd let ya'll know that the kids fared very well the next day at school. Buddy's teacher told me what a wonderful job he did on taking notes. He was so proud of the +8 he received - note that it's out of 5 points:) Darlin' was also quite proud of herself when I picked her up from school. Apparently, she seemed to be the "talk of the town" that day with her 10 page memoir. The teacher indicated that there was no limit and she enjoyed the paper:)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Showers & Stools!

When I was little, I was a flower girl in my Aunt's wedding (who had been one in my mother's wedding) and in turn her daughter was a junior bridesmaid in mine. So naturally my cousin, Jill, promised my daughter years ago that she would be in her wedding. That day is approaching in October and, as Darlin' has been waiting a long time for this, she is quite excited!

I do believe she is actually more excited to be a junior bridesmaid than a flower girl, because she gets to wear a more grown up gown and heels! Since she can't drive yet, (fortunately that's four years away! yikes!) I have been able to enjoy some perks that go along with her being in the bridal party.

We got to enjoy a day of dress shopping with my Aunt, cousin and the rest of the bridesmaids. In one day we hit two bridal shops and 3 malls! Considering that Darlin' tried on the dress we eventually bought her in the first shop, she really just enjoyed the day for the shear fun of hanging out with family, watching the bridesmaids try on dresses and even trying on a few more of her own. We left at about 9 a.m. that morning to travel to Jersey, returned about 11:30 p.m. and had a blast!

We are also both looking forward to getting our nails done together before the wedding. I keep reminding Darlin' that she's already had her nails done at a salon way more then me ... only once for my wedding! (Pretty sad, huh?!)

Since she is in the wedding party, we have to stay overnight after the rehearsal dinner at the hotel (yeah!) , which by the name of it sounds fancy. . .the Wyndham. On the wedding day, I also get to tag along to get my hair and make-up done too! Gosh, I don't think I had such pampering for my own wedding!

Over the weekend Darlin' and I helped the bridesmaids throw a shower for my cousin. Despite Tropical Storm Hanna forcing the party indoors, everything went splendidly.

If you don't know already, I love to throw a party, so it was a lot of fun for me to be a part of the bridal shower. Darlin' and I put together little heart tins full of autumn colored, dark chocolate M&M's for the party favors. They worked perfectly with the fall theme for the October wedding. Aren't they cute?

The bride-to-be wearing an original Denitra's Designer Bonnet!

My cousin and her fiance have a huge height difference between them. Almost a foot and a half! So I thought that it was a perfect time for another kissing stool in the family....

At my bridal shower, my parents gave me a kissing stool. As there is a full foot difference in height between myself and Hubby, this was quite needed. I remember bringing it to the rehearsal and we pulled it out for our practice kiss for a good laugh. Now it resides in my kitchen, where I use it almost daily. Although, kicking it around to the various cupboards to retrieve dishes off the top shelf isn't nearly as satisfying as kissing! Perhaps I'll retouch it for our next anniversary, so we can be reminded of it's true purpose!

For Jill's kissing stool I bought an unfinished stool at the local craft store and stained it with October Brown: Milk Chocolate spray. How appropriate for the October wedding?! Not to mention that it has the word chocolate in the name!

It also perfectly matched the ribbon and trim on the wedding invitation that I decoupaged on top!

When it was time for her to open the gift, I presented it to her by first reading this poem.

Soon you’ll be married to Too Tall Tim,
It’s about time you married him!
Darla’s been waiting patiently,
To be a part of your bridal party.

To watch you walking down the aisle,
While Aunt Vicki cries, only with a smile.
After years of dating it’s come to this,
A promise you seal with a wedding kiss.

But at 6 foot 7 Tim’s just too tall.
How will you be able to reach him at all?
Standing about 5 foot 3,
It’s plain to see you’re challenged vertically.

In order to bridge the 16 inch difference,
We though you might be in need of assistance.
So here we come to your rescue.
To provide some aid when you say “I do.”

Just step right up and take a stand,
Go ahead, pucker up and kiss your man!
You will look so cool, just a lovin’ fool
When you step upon this Kissing Stool!

Here's the groom and bride (standing upon the stool!)

Friday, September 5, 2008

Sidebar Surprise

Hey check out my sidebar. It used to show a countdown to the movie Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. I was surprised to see that it changed automatically to show Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader!

How exciting! Only 639 days to go!

Can you tell I've been on an extended hiatus from blogging? I'm finding new things on my own site!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

History in the Making

So anybody out there excited about Sarah Palin?! The last week has just been a swirl of excitement and anticipation surrounding the first Republican woman VP nominee!

Hubby and I watched the RNC speeches over the past two nights and have enjoyed them immensely. Fred Thompson and Rudy Giuliani were my favorites leading up to her acceptance speech. How about you?

Of course, my all time favorite was Governor Palin. She is extraordinarily gifted and did an exceptional job in delivery and content. I am excited to have a conservative on the ticket!

I hadn't been as thrilled about John McCain, but I must say I am getting more excited about him too. The more I learn about him, the more impressed I become about his service, character and integrity. I truly believe he would make the best Commander in Chief and that is a primary reason that he will have my support.

I am quite impressed with his running mate, Sarah Palin. She strikes me as a person who lives what she believes and is not ashamed to do so. Someone who is willing to fight for what is right, no matter what the cost. Someone who shares my values regarding life, family, taxes, drilling, the war on terror and other conservative issues.

She will have my support because of what she believes and what she has done, not just because she is a woman. In fact, I must admit, that is the only thing that keeps me from jumping up and down, waving my arms excitedly and signing up to campaign.

Are there any other proud-to-be-a-stay-at-home-moms that feel the same way I do? I have worked some since having children, but only part time and in flexible jobs that have enabled the kids to join me at times. My kids are now in school and I would definitely consider working while they're at school or if I needed to support our family. I do believe that there are times when a stay-at-home-dad may be the best option for a family. Whatever our circumstances, I believe we need to seek the Lord's guidance and not blindly follow society's mantra that we as women should be able to "have and do it all."

To sum up, I believe God has given women the unique honor, responsibility and ability to be mothers. When He so blesses a family with children, that family should be a woman's priority.

The question for me isn't, "Can a woman do the job?" I have no doubt she would do an excellent job as VP and most likely President in future years. The question for me is, "But should a mother with pre-school children seek such a job?"

Now, don't get me wrong. I have a HUGE problem with the liberal media and the Democrats questioning why she would consider running for office with an infant at home. As they have long knocked the importance and privilege of being "just" a mother, I feel that they have forfeited the right to denigrate or criticize any woman who has chosen to have a career and a family. In fact isn't that what they've been trying to get us to do all along? You'd think they would give Sarah Palin a nod of awed respect at how she has accomplished this duality so successfully. (Of course not. . .she's a Republican!)

I, on the other hand, would be questioning a mother-of-young-children's decision to accept such a demanding job no matter which party she represented. I long to support her 100%, but I think I need to keep it at about 95% to be consistent with my beliefs.

Somehow, I think Sarah Palin, would respect that consistency!

I will be praying for her and her family as she seeks this office and perhaps becomes the first woman Vice President of the United States. And I will jump up and down excitedly on election night . . . because she is a conservative, a Republican and a woman! It's history in the making and I'm proud to be a part of it!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Early to Bed, Early to Rise

So how does that saying go? Early to bed, early to rise, makes a gal healthy, wealthy and ... TIRED!

Yup, day two of back to school and I AM EXHAUSTED!

Being a life long night owl, it is shocking to find myself yawning at 10:30 p.m. and hardly able to stay awake for the last of the RNC speeches at 11:30 p.m. last night. You early birds may think that's staying up late, but considering my typical bedtime of 12:30 - 1:00 a.m., weariness is hitting me a couple hours earlier than usual.

The anticipation and excitement of the first day of school enabled our whole family to jump out of bed with eagerness yesterday morning. Today, however, was a different story....

The wave of momentum from yesterday failed to elevate me out of the water bed this morning as I dragged my feet from the bed and they thudded to the floor like lead weights. I was sooooo tired that I couldn't even bear to think about turning the lights on til I found myself attempting to make lunches in the dark! Fortunately, the kitchen has a dimmer switch, so I could ease my eyes into waking up.

Eventually, things got moving, but it was back to reality this morning. No bright eyed, bushy tailed kids or adults (just cats - Swiffer's tail is always quite bushy!) - the four of us were dragin' our wagons. We managed to have a quick breakfast of cereal together and pray as a family before leaving for the day. Both kids arrived at school early, so our get-them-to-school-on-time-or-else attitude is working - we're 2 for 2!

Hubby called me after we dropped off our respective charges at their particular institutions of learning. As you may suspect, both of us were heading to WAWA to get our much needed dose of caffeine that had unfortunately been left out of the breakfast equation earlier.

As I continue to struggle with wakefulness, despite 12 oz of WAWA coffee followed by an iced latte from Starbucks a few hours later, I must remember to heed Hubby's advise - "Whatever you do don't take a nap!"

Oh, but that is all I want to do! It will be especially hard this afternoon during the 1 and 1/2 hours of piano lessons. The wonderful music would lull me to sleep if I let it.

Hopefully, after a few days of avoiding naps my body will eventually ease itself into this early to bed, early to rise pattern and I'll be able to write a more coherent post! In the meantime ... coffee is my friend!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Back to School, Back to Blogging!

September is here and that means the kids are back at school and I am back to blogging! Didya miss me?

It was a pretty calm morning for the first day of school with the kids going to different schools for the first time. Buddy will continue at Grace Christian and is excited to begin 5th grade with a new teacher and a couple of new kids in the class. Darlin' begins 7th grade today at Plumstead Christian and was nervously excited when I drove her to school for the first time this morning. She looked so pretty in her khaki pants, pink PCS shirt (our first time with school uniforms!), cute plaid flats and a new hair-do!

Hard to believe she's in middle school ... sniff ... sniff. Over the weekend we watched a few home videos of when she was turning two. How adorable! Instead of "cookie" she would say "tootie", so I've been lovingly referring to her as my "tootie" girl. They grow up too fast ... but I digress ....

Unlike our usually hurried mornings of the past, today ran quite smoothly. All up by 6:15 a.m. (quite a feat after getting up between 8 a.m. - 9 a.m. for the past few months!), lunches packed, piano played, a sit down breakfast at 6:50 a.m. with the WHOLE family (wow! I don't think that's ever happened on a school day - usually I eat after everyone is gone!), obligatory pictures taken on the way out the door to commemorate the first day of school, on the road at 7:22 a.m. to arrive at school at 7:46 a.m. with 20 minutes to spare! Yahoo! Considering we usually arrive with only a few minutes to go, this is something to celebrate. Now we just have to keep the momentum going for the rest of the school year ... yikes!

Well, I'm glad to get back to the blogging world again and have a little outlet for myself. It's been a very busy summer for me. It was sandwiched with sorrow, but was filled with joy in between. Kinda like an Oreo "tootie", only I love the chocolate and don't care for the filling, so maybe I should come up with a better metaphor!

This summer was full of celebrations: both our children becoming communicant members, Darlin' graduating from 6th grade, a wedding each month (from May to November!), bridal showers, baby showers, birthdays and a new baby cousin! In addition we were able to travel to Pittsburgh for one of the weddings (and as a result buy a new van which we are enjoying immensely!), take many trips to the Jersey shore, go to some water parks, spend lots of time in the pool, camp in the back yard and enjoy the campfire and s'mores, finally figure out how to cook on the grill successfully, host pool parties, attend a local Polish-American festival and create lots of great family memories!

Hope you all had a wonderful summer too and I look forward to getting back into a blogging routine and catching up with everyone!