Sunday, December 31, 2006
9:00 Go to Suburban Christian Church in the fog
12:30 George taught the 9:30 and 11:00 a.m. Sunday School classes on the State of World Missions. He is talking to his former discipler, Phil. (another reason we switched to this church!)
1:15 Traditional Stop at "Coffee Culture" for one Latte, one Steamer, and two fruit smoothies.
2:00 - 3:15 Elliptical Cardio at Timberhill. If you click on the picture, and scroll down a bit, you see an enlarge view of me in the window taking the picture.
3:30 p.m. A totally unflattering picture of me doing my Core workout on a stability ball.
4:00 - 5:30 Answer emails, reveiw news websites, post my end of the year answers on forum, and download pictures on to the computer to post this blog entry!
ACK! I have to go and take a shower for dinner and party! 5:30 - 9:00 a.m. tomorrow still to come!
Friday, December 29, 2006
Thursday, December 28, 2006
- Good night's sleep
- Good quality time with George in the morning
- Cleaned the whole house as a family - boys downstairs and George and I did the upstairs
- Did four loads of laundry
- Scrapbooked and had great friend-to-friend with Kim as we did it. She validates me! There is nothing like face-to-face time with a good friend. It beats the phone or email any day of the week.
- Walk with George as the sun set over Glen Eden . . . ahhhhhhhhhh.
- Being here resting
I love being on vacation.
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
I reawakened at 5:38 a.m., and it was too late.
So, I thought, "I can go to the 9:20 a.m. class!" Well, I am glad I checked the schedule this morning because they changed it, and there isn't another class until 7:30 tonight.
So, the sun is shining, and George and I are going for a walk. Plan B always has a silver lining.
Still feeling somewhat squishy about things that happened last week. Don't know what I am going to do about it, but I am going to just take it one day at a time. I am still sort of sad about all the fast changes. George also reminded me of something that I had forgotten I had said that has made me wonder whether I should make a change. I am just listening and waiting.
Today, George will do Dial-A-Book and take the boys to music lessons so that I can work on my scrapbooks. He will also go to the bank and deposit all the Christmas checks. We were so very blessed this year.
First is the walk though. We have a big stretch of sunshine this morning, and I want to seize it before the next wave of rain comes in!
Monday, December 25, 2006
Yummy things to eat and fun people to greet!
What a great time! I really loved the "pick me up"!
After we were all done opening gifts, he said that the whole Christmas was perfect except for not being able to have the Cowden Christmas Party.
We had a great low-key season, and I never "dipped" because of the holiday. I did dip because of the TDS thing and M asking me about the future with M. That made me sad to have to dredge all of that stuff up again in my heart, but Christmas was so wonderful. I had a great time in every way.
Paul was a little disappointed when he got another version of Roller Coaster Tycoon, but I assured him that it was the latest and best model. Then he felt bad for being disappointed and kept looking at me to make sure I was OK. Poor guy. I'm OK! I think he is fine now. He installed it and thought it looked really neat.
George got a book from one of the boys in the boys' group called Better Dads, Stronger Sons by Rick Johnson. This list called "Mistakes All Dads Make" made me realize what a great dad George is to his sons!
- Emphasize weaknesses, not strengths
- Avoiding physical affection
- Giving too little time
- Pushing for performance
- Forgetting to have fun
- Fearing failure
- Abusing your power
- Neglecting your need for friendships
- Being inconsistent
- Being complacent and passive
George just came back and read me the final exhortation in the whole book. He thought it was a good one:
"In closing this book, let me summarize my counsel about raising your son to nobility with one sentence: remember to tell your boy you love him and are proud of him, to pray for him, to spend time with him, and to love his mother. That's the best advice."
And their dad has done all these things and more!
Sunday, December 24, 2006
When the kids were toddlers, they didn't like it when I sang to them. So, I let that dream die. It was OK.
But earlier this month, while we were listening to a Mannheim Steamroller CD with this song (a beautiful rendition BTW), Paul said, "What are the words to that song?" I started singing a bit and then I jokingly told him that I have tried to sing that song to them on several Christmas Eves, but I was booed. He said, "Mom, I really don't remember doing that." I said, "Well you were young."
This evening, Paul and Michael both asked me if I would sing the song to them after Dad read Bartholomew's Passage. I was shocked. They said, "No, mom, really."
While George read, I went downstairs and played the melody line on the piano. Then, George said, "They are ready for you." I decided I wasn't going to be flustered, and I wasn't going to worry how it sounded. I would just sing with confidence and joy. I did just that.
I started on perfect pitch. The moment was so surreal and so beautiful. I remember thinking as I sang that I wanted to cry because it was so beautiful, but I also thought that I would not do that, and I didn't. I wanted it to be seamless.
I sang in the dark the song I have wanted to sing to them for the last fifteen years. At the end, they clapped, and Paul said, "That was really good, Mom. You did a really good job. It was like a lullaby. It made me start to fall asleep. I am just going to do that right now." Michael softly said, "Good job."
My dream of singing a sweet song in the dark to my boys has been realized, and I just had a lovely memory moment.
Still, still, still
Can you hear the falling snow?
While all is still the world is sleeping
Holy Star its vigil keeping.
Still, still, still,
Can you hear the falling snow?
Sleep, sleep, sleep, 'tis the eve of our Savior's birth
The night is peaceful all around you,
Close your eyes, let sleep surround you
Sleep, sleep, sleep 'tis the eve of our Savior's birth.
Dream, dream, dream of the joyous day to come.
While guardian angels without number
Watch you as you sweetly slumber.
Dream, dream, dream of the joyous day to come.
Thank you, Lord for this day. Thank you Lord for my children, and the man who stood in the shadow of the doorway and cheered me on with his mere presence as I sang.
'Tis a gift to be a part of this family. I got my present for Christmas already.
I want to sing and dance and say, "I am feeling so much better!" I actually went to the club this afternoon and had a good cardio workout, and I didn't terrible afterward! That hasn't happened for about two weeks now. So, YIPPEE!
Our first Christmas at Suburban Christian was all it was meant to be and more. I loved it. We had a couple behind us who was honored because today is their 60th wedding anniversary! I love how Pastor Steve acknowledges these milestones of the congregation.
He also introduced us because we (really George) will be leading a Sunday School class on "The State of the World" in missions. They are so eager and up for everything there. I love how Steve also makes everyone feel so welcome.
We came back and I had some more St. Lucia Day Cinnamon Rolls while I gave Becky her "virtual gift" on TDS. I loved it, and I think she did too. She is a good one to "shop" for!
Then, I hit that club, and it was PACKED. I wasn't sure if it would be dead because it is Christmas Eve or would be deserted. I think everyone is getting their last workout in because of the limited hours on Tuesday and NO HOURS on Monday for Christmas.
I finished Shepherd's Abiding and started watching I Remember Mama with Irene Dunn. I love the film about a Scandinavian family!
I came home and didn't feel lousy. That is so great, and I called and talked to Teala, but Debbie and my mama didn't answer.
The kids had John over all afternoon until a few minutes ago when Jim picked him up and said, "Our church . . ." It was weird to have him talk about it that way since it used to be our church too. This is the only time I have felt weird about leaving Northwest Hills. I will miss the Christmas Eve service, but I am also excited to go watch.
It's a Wonderful Life
with my great family while the RED AND GREEN meal cooks on the stove.
I love my life, even though it had some bumps this week. :)
Friday, December 22, 2006
Chris Gardner has said in his interviews that "home" and "happiness" are in the relationships that we have with one another and the time we spend in investment. This was definitely modeled by the character in the movie, but the dialogue made it sound like money was the be all end all. Chris Gardner would not agree. He said in an interview on Oprah something to the effect that he knows people with all the money in the world that don't spend any time with their children, and that is a tragedy. So, he is talking about being "spiritually" poor there even with a lot of money.
Overall, I really did like it though. It was a good movie to count your blessings during the holidays.
I am skipping my Group Power class again. I didn't feel well when I got up this morning again. I am going for a walk with Michelle at 9 a.m., and I didn't want to over do it with weigh lifting and walking. I am going to ease back into everything very slowly. I have been sick off and on for almost ten days now. Hopefully, I will be better by Christmas.
Thursday, December 21, 2006
On top of that, I like who I am around and where I am going. No more crazy, psycho, drama queen ladies in my life anymore, and I am happy that I am being VERY selective about who I allow in my life now. So, I not only like how I look right now, I like who I am hanging with.
I like my kids. They are not big jocks. They aren't really popular. They are just nice PEOPLE. Just today we were all laughing at The Complete Adventures of Curious George, and we were just having a fun time.
I like my husband. He makes me so darn happy. He likes to go to movies and will go with my girlfriends and me. He likes similar books. He likes to talk deep at a moments notice. He likes to invest in people and not things. That is a huge value.
I like my extended family and in-laws. There is peace on ever side, and we know how to make peace if anything happens because all those people on both sides of the family are committed to peace.
I like my church. Another group of people who are commited to peace. I like this new family.
Well, I am out of time and off to spend a lovely evening with friends and my sweet, adorable, tall, handsome and sexy husband.
I am so hilariously happy.
Walked with Cathi and Jess (She lives RIGHT on the edge of Peavy Arboreteum trails!)
Talked with Cathi and Jess
Bought Steamer, scones, and cinnamon rolls (for St. Lucia Day) at Jamocha Jo's
Entered more books in my library
Found out my Thumbelina and Little Mermaid books are RARE and worth bucks!
Now, I am off to The Pursuit of Happyness with Teala, Shelley, and George.
Bye Bye for Now!
I plan to cry. :)
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
The Runyons, Kinkades, Alexander Boys, and our family all got together for the annual gingerbread party.
I don't think we did them in Malaysia though. So, we have done them since 1999! Wow! I will have to find a photo archives of all our attempts at making the perfect house.
We have done it with the K's for the last three years, and that has been lovely. I have invited the Alexander boys, and Dee has invited the Sarah and Emma. So, it should be fun, fun, fun.
I am on the verge of my 100th post after two years of doing this blog. It is a time for celebration (Although I had the other blog that mysteriously disappeared, and I probably had about 50 posts on that one alone)!
I will post pictures of our Gingerbread Creations in a little bit.
Still want to celebrate Santa Lucia Day, but I think it will be on Saturday. I am hoping that George will make some yummy cinnamon rolls on Friday night!
P.S. Don't you love my nifty "Books that I have Read" tab on the side? Thank you Ampersand for teaching me how to do this and finding that nifty site that I told you about yesterday. I spent most of the day entering books that I have read. Many were from lists I have made over the years, but some were just from memory when they popped into my head. I am sure there are many more that I have read, but I entered more than 500 yesterday. My head hurts, and I am staying away from that website today.
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
It is free for the first 200, but it is only $25 for LIFE. I am there. What a great new tool! Now, if I could only figure out how to do widgets on the sidebar and display my library books!
Sunday, December 17, 2006
Jenny - What is more important; the physical or the strategic element? Yul thinks strategy is more important. Yul could do it.
Parvati - Becky, convince me that you want to win this. She wanted to win in a way that she is proud.
Jenny - Is that her name? She thought they were flawless. Yul in strategy. Ozzy in challenges. Yul wanted minorities on TV. See Asian American men as they truly are. Good point. Minorities represented on TV. Ozzy wants to change the stereotype of what a Mexican. He thinks he can become a positive role model. WOW! It is going to be so close.
Adam - Thinks they aer painfully boring. Talk trash about the other two. Not about you. Yul didn't work as hard as he could. Becky riding on coat tails. You should be able to make a fire after 39 days.
Candice - Think that they made it after the mutiny is cool. Yul you say what people want to hear. Say Yes or No. You have been shamelessly working this jury. YES.
Brad - Kudos to all of you. Ozzy, I had a fifteen second conversation. Most challenging experience in your life. The man can't be around and take responsibility. Father never been around and been there for you. The person that created you doesn't want you around or whatever. Oh, I want Ozzy. He is so cute, but it will probably be Yul. Oh well.
Sondra - What have you discovered about yourself? Ozzy: Pure love. There is nothing here but mind, soul, body. Learning to love. Loving and cherishing every single moment. Becky: Let time go. Yul: New found self-confidence about myself. I had alot of fears and anxieties. She likes them all. Loves them all. Oh, it is going to be a hard one.
Jonathan - He says congratulations. Yul is very polite but political. Your future constituents. How can you telling half truths and half lies are right about integrity. Yul says that Survivor is a game. I would never do this in real life. Was very true to the original people. Ozzy you are arrogant. You act as if you are a prince. I am a little bit uncomfortable about your "entitlement." Ozzy: I would go back to school. I would complete higher education without money I would owe to someone else. Becky didn't even get asked. Poor Becky. I don't know if she will get a single vote.
That is the notes for the JURY!
I tried to watch Captain's Courageous with George, but I kept falling asleep. So, I slept from 8:20 - 11:40 last night, and I woke up and couldn't go back to sleep until 4 a.m. So, I used the time to read Hinds' Feet on High Places. How delightful! I haven't read this since I was in college!
Skipped church, and George said that our new pastor said he hopes I feel better. Also, Kim, the children's ministry director, said she was praying. What a great, great church to even care that I was sick! I was gone for a whole summer once because of major surgery, and the only ones who even noticed were the people in my Bible study! I am simply amazed at how caring this church really is. Thank you JESUS for giving me a new, caring church family.
So, while my sweet family was at church, my sweet friend, Teala, called, and we talked for three hours! She needed someone to process things with. What a dear friend of almost 30 years!
Debbie also emailed to say that she thinks she will engaged by the New Year! WOOOHOOO!
Off to have Jambalya with sausage and chicken!
YUMMY and I am a spoiled person when it comes to my sweet husband serving me
Saturday, December 16, 2006
Friday, December 15, 2006
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
I don't know why, but I was just musing over someone's response to me when I told them something deep about how I felt about something. The whole time she just kept denying my feelings. This is someone who is supposed to be getting a degree in helping people. I just don't get it. Thankfully, she is not one of my close friends but one of the people who is in the "vortex." I am so glad to be with people who don't deny who I am made to be anymore. I am so thankful to be in a healthier environment. It is so great.
So, that is all I have to say about that. :)
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
If you don't respect the other person,
you're gonna have a lot of trouble.
If you don't know how to compromise,
you're gonna have a lot of trouble.
If you can't talk openly about what goes on between you,
you're gonna have a lot of trouble.
If you don't have a common set of values in life,
you're gonna have a lot of trouble.
I have two reactions to these quotes
1) Praise God that George and I have all four of these things going for us! I respect the socks off of him. Such a man of integrity and compassion. He communicates respect for me in a million ways. We can always come to compromise and consensus. We can talk about anything, and we have never had times of "silence." Helps to both be extroverted feelers! Last but not least, we had the same life goals and values about God, money, family, etc before we even met each other. Thankful this morning.
2) All four of these were not present in my most recent "ministry marriage." So, why didn't I realize there was going to be a hunk of trouble?
Food for thought.
Monday, December 11, 2006
Today has been lovely and hopeful for me (other than the recent announcement on my board). I woke up on time, and I did a pre Group Power workout of Elliptical for 30 minutes and a post-Group Power workout on the Stair Stepper for another 30 minutes. I really like the routine that Jen does at Group Power too. She is, by far, my favorite instructor. She just has a very pleasant disposition, and she works us hard.
I was thinking the week of celebrating and eating lots of candy and cookies would have left me with some extra weight this week, but I was pleasantly surprised when I saw I was at GOAL WEIGHT! It is the TOP of my goal weight range, but it was GOAL! So, that was a great pick me up for today. YIPPEE!
Now, I just read my Bible (Elijah was taken up and Elisha is taking up the mantle), and I am still hurting a bit from having to rehash some things in my heart because M asked me my opinion about working with M. I don't want to give a bad report, but I can't support someone working with her. I had a miserable experience, and I don't want anyone to go through that kind of experience. A different person would go through a different experience though. I know that I am sensitive and my gifting didn't fit with hers, but I just don't support her as a leader, but I am not there anymore. M asked for my opinion though. It is hard for me because there is a line I do not want to cross in any way. It is so hard. I want to be guarded in what I say. I didn't want to have to be put in that situation. I am so sad that it all happened that I had to have a bad experience with her. I wanted to stay the distant friend that I had become. I should never have agreed to do it. Yet, I feel like I finished the course and did well. I feel like women were blessed, and I was blessed in many ways by the experience.
All that said, it was what God intended for my growth and to get me out the door of a very dysfunctional church. I am in such a healthy church now, and I can't believe how different it all is. It is different in every way. The people are so godly. That is the only way to describe them. Degrees don't mean squat to God. Last night was so impressive. I love the fact that this church votes on important decisions. The elders do not have all the power. They are just the spiritual leaders and give spiritual guidance. I am so ULTRA impressed with everything that I saw last night. To see a healthy church in action is a lovely thing.
I will quit gushing about this church. I just love what I have seen. I love the people. I love the leadership. I love the way it is run. I love the community there. I love my Bible study. I love my Bible study leader (Claudia). I love the Women's Ministry leaders (Claudia and Vicki). I feel so OFF THE CHARTS blessed in every way!
Now, it is off to do the Jesse Tree and Timeline work and Rock Cycle Science and Math for Michael. I love my children too!
Sunday, December 10, 2006
We caught up on the Jesse Tree this morning with the boys. We were three days behind. We did end up being able to do the "Ten Commandments on the Tenth" as Isaac said it should be. So hilarious.
I don't know what I was going to write other than today is peaceful and lovely, and I am content with my life and direction. I only dread having to tell Cheryl that I won't be able to continue with the cooking club in the winter. It just is not working out with our schedule, and I think I have crammed too much into my life with very little wiggle room. The problem is that I LOVE everything that I am doing, but I must decided between good, better, and best. I never committed myself to doing it, and I was just exploring the possibility. It just means we come back too tired to do our school work on Friday, and I just want to keep the pace up.
So, if this is the only thing that I am dreading, that is a very good thing. It means that I am dreading very little. I am also not dreading anyone. Last year, there was much dread of a certain someone, and I have no fear or dread now. I am free.
"The Lord is my light and my salvation
Whom shall I fear
The Lord is the defense of my life
Whom shall I dread."
The answer is: NO ONE
Thank you for no one to fear or dread these days.
Friday, December 08, 2006
I shopped during music. We ran home and put away groceries and dashed to a St. Nicholas Day cookie baking with our friends the Iszlers.
In the evening, I went to my sweet Bible study at Claudia's house. I love studying Ephesians with this group of mature ladies. There were only nine of us this time, and the smaller, the better!
We had the Alexanders over because Mary Beth is wiped out with Bruce's cancer treatment. I feel for her. She is so tired. So, I had them until about 11. I had a more curtailed time with the boys for school. Then, I had Bible study with Nancy and Kim. Good time or finding out about our personality types. We will work together very well.
The evening meant SURVIVOR! I say either Yul or Ozzy are my picks. No one else interests me. Becky has ridden the coattails of Yul. Sondra is very nice and sweet, but she might be the sleeper! No way on Pavarti or Clay (?). They are lazy. Yul and Ozzy are the best competitors in the bunch. Not to mention they are both very cute!
Two hour workout in the morning (Weights and Elliptical, and Step Machine). Meditation and prayer. Then off to cooking class. My kids are finally done with doing this. I have been done with it for a while because I just don't think it is the best use of my gifts. I come, and I feel like I want to get in all these conversations, and I just don't feel the freedom to do it. I love the food, and I love the people, but I think I need to be reaching out in a more spontaneous way with women like I did this summer. Plus, we just don't get back to school whenever we do go.
I also need some wiggle room, and I need to stick to the goal of having school in the mornings.
Came home to a meeting with Michelle. What do I do when someone asks me point blank whether she should work with someone? I love Michelle. Don't I want to warn her? I don't know. I am so confused, and I want to be very careful.
Then, I had a talk with Lisa. Love those two women. They are so great. I really miss working wtih them, and I think working with them would have been so fun, but it wasn't meant to be. I am sad about that, but I am in such a good place right now.
So, that is "part of my week."
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