Thursday, June 29, 2006

A little Clarification

Due to the enormous amounts of questions I've gotten about who ticked me off so badly by criticizing my parenting.... I thought I'd give a little more information.. No one, although I'm sure it's happened. I know that usually when someone says, "I've got a friend that has this problem", it is usually that person but honestly, it was a friend. Actually it was a string of conversations that I had had with a few different friends. But, I would like to say thank you for all of you that offered to "hunt that person down" it's nice to know ya'll have my back. Seriously, I am blessed to have such wonderful friends and family.

Now a little thought for the day, week or until whenever I find the time to post again....
Emma has been studying the story where Jesus feeds the five thousand in her bible class at church. I'm sure most everyone is familiar with this story. It can be found in John 6. Anyway, the jist of the story is this: Jesus is speaking to a crowd of about 5000 the disciples say, "how are we going to feed all of these people". Jesus asks them how much food they have. And the disciples say look, here is a boy with two fish and five loaves of bread. So then Jesus turns that little amount of food into enough to feed five thousand and have tons of leftovers. Ok, so here's my question.... Out of five thousand people, why was there this one little boy who had a lunch? Probably because his loving mother packed it for him and made sure he didn't go out the door without it. Alright, have a blessed day!!

Love from above,


Monday, June 26, 2006

Happy Birthday Emma

This post is a little late. It's the first I've gotten a chance to update you on our big girl (Emma is very adamant now that she's three that she is no longer a little girl). Her birthday was June 19th. For any of you youth ministers/wives out there. Summer is the worst time for a youth minister to have a baby. Poor thing, her birthday is always shared with some youth event. Since her birthday was the second day of work camp, we had her party on Saturday. Aunt Jan flew in on Friday and Adam rushed home from the air port on Saturday after picking up the work camp speaker just in time to grill some fabulous hamburgers for our guests. We had a nice little party. Also, my mom and sister had her a wonderful little party when she was down in Alabama visiting them weekend before last. We ended up celebrating her birthday for about two weeks. But here is what's on my mind...

I can't believe my baby is three. Wow, it's like it's the cut off between baby and child. It's working to my advantage.. She told me the other day that she helped her Sunday school teacher clean up because she has to be a good example for the two year olds. And, she also informed me that now that she's three, she will be obeying me because three year olds make good decisions. So like I said, there are good things about having a three year old. I'm hoping this new philosophy sticks but still, SHE'S THREE. That's a little sad. Don't get me wrong, it's nice that she can have these little conversations with me. I have so much fun just seeing what she comes up with next. This age is great! But, my baby is gone. People have told me over and over to soak it up because she will be grown before I know it. And, I will say this, I can't... As much as I soak, she's still growing too fast. So anyway, I just thought I'd get that out.

Ok, now to work camp. Work camp is this thing they do here where they go around the area, find people that need there houses painted and then 500 teenagers and adults come in from all over the US and they paint them in 4 days. Well, apparently being the work camp photographer is quite a task. They normally do a slide show at the banquet on Thursday night that has before, after, candid and group pictures in it. I figured that photographer meant taking pictures. Little did I know, that I was supposed to do the slide show (something my wonderful husband neglected to share with me at the beginning of all of this) So on Monday morning, I received before pictures of about 35 houses none which were labeled and a separate address list. Once I finally figured out the addresses to the houses, I had to go re-take about half of them because they were very poor quality taken from a phone camera. Emma spent her birthday riding around in the car with me while I jumped out and took pictures. Adam was able to go with us the first day though so it wasn't so bad since we were all able to be together. I know that riding around in the car all day isn't the best way for a child to spend her day but, it is teaching her that she's part of a bigger plan and that it isn't all about her. That is something that we'd all be better off if we learned at a young age. It rained a lot of the week and it put a lot of groups up to the very last minute finishing their house. I had gotten a hold of some people were out on the sites that were the furthest away and asked them to bring me their pictures. We were still getting pictures at 6:15 and the banquet started at 6:30 So anyway, we didn't get the slide show done quite in time. Thank God Jan was here or it wouldn't have gotten done at all. But, Kevin, the director did an excellent job stalling. I swear he had everyone in the room stand up for applause and some a second round of applause. It would have been funny if I hadn't been on the verge of a nervous break down. The power went out once too! Thank God for battery back ups! We finally got a very mediocre slide show up and going. On Friday, I went back and took some more final pictures and Jan helped me build the final slideshow which was pretty good if I do say so myself. That will be sent to all the churches that participated for them to show at home. The most important thing though is that some lives were touched and hopefully, those people were able to see Jesus in a very practical and tangible way. It's very hard during things like this to not get caught up in the work and forget the point (Showing Jesus to the world around us). None the less, Jason Steckel, if you happen to read this, The Mid Ohio Valley Workcamp missed you this year!! We need to talk to you before next year and figure out your system! Anyway, this week, is Emma's week. I will be making up for all the time she spent in the car last week.

Btw, if any of you that are reading this were at church last Sunday, I am aware that David got all over my last post. For those of you that weren't... He said that it took a community to raise a child and that we all got offended if someone told us how to raise our children. Ok, here's my disclosure: David is a wonderful guy and he's a great speaker. And, I agree with him...sort of. There is this old saying, "No one cares what you know until they how you care". That's true. There is a way that you go about "helping someone". Criticizing is not the way. And, you have to have a certain relationship with that person before you can even "help". So, I stand by my words. You can love someone and support someone into being a better mother. My mother does it to me all the time. A critical spirit never helps anyone but Satan.

Love from above,


Friday, June 09, 2006

Sorry, need to vent again

Ok, I just need to vent a little here. I love my daughter. She means everything to me. I feel confident in my parenting. I know that I will make mistakes but I also know that I have her best interest at heart and I want nothing more than for her to one day be the woman that God wants her to be. I pray daily for God to give me the wisdom to make the right choices in raising her. I also know that every child is different and that it is usually the mother that spends the most time with their child and therefore knows what is best for her child (at least children Emma's age). I believe that there are no pat answers and that every child is different. Like I said, I feel like I do a good job. However, I am not arrogant enough to think that I am qualified to raise someone elses child or tell them how to do so and frankly, that drives me nuts. From day one, moms (especially new moms) have people critizing if they let their babies cry or if they pick them up too often and not let them cry, whether they have a pacifier or not, how long they take the pacifier. Then their is how often you change your kids diaper. People critize if you take your child out of the house too early or accuse you of being an over protective parent if you keep them home too long. Then when the child gets older, it's what food you let them eat, how much TV you let them watch, or my favorite, how you discipline. The list goes on and on. Don't get me wrong, I'm very cautious about all of these things but I just don't think I have the right to judge a mom who is say overworked and needs a break and let's her child watch three hours of TV a day as opposed to the two recommended by the american pediatric association. Seriously, can people actually be taking care of their own children if they are so worried about how someone else takes care of theirs. If someone is truly concerned about the well being of the child involved, the best thing you can do is encourage the mom. Since day one, my family has made it a point to tell me what a great job I'm doing. I'm so thankful for that. A lot of my friends don't have that. It makes me confident in my approach and helps me to be consistant. The worst thing you can do to a mom is make her second guess herself. There is one reason that people criticize others, insecurity. Most mom's love their children more than they love themselves and that alone is to be commended. When you've gotten up two times a night to take care of a newborn, then you've earned the right to make choices for that child, THAT CHILD not any other. Come on people, mom's need support!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Where do I start?

Ok, so it's been several weeks. I've got a whole lot on my mind and just haven't known where to start. Should I tell you about how the nature of humanity is to stick to tradition whether it's pratical and efficient or not (more often not) drives me insane? Or how Paul says in the Bible that we should "become all things to all men". Paul believed in that principle enough that he shaved his head and observed a forty day jewish ritual (after he was a Christian) all for the sake of reaching the jews. And we are still arguing over whether or not one translation of the Bible is more holy than another. By the way, is anyone realizing that the Bible was written in Hebrew and Greek to begin with. Just to clear it up, No one reading this is reading the Bible out of the "original" text. Or maybe these concepts can't even be approached yet because we haven't yet grasped the concept that God is LOVE and that people will know us by our love for each other. Ok, just needed to vent a bit.

Now, Emma...
Emma is about to turn three and she's bringing it in in style. We had a rough week last week. She's testing the limits. Being a mother is hard. It's true when people say that having a child is like having your heart walk around on the outside of you. Today, we just stayed home and played. We had a wedding with her princess dolls and read books outside on a blanket in the yard. It was nice. She's with me all the time but there have been so many distractions.

Yesterday, she asked me if I could put her in a box and mail her to her nonna. It was cute, but a little sad too. I explained to her why that wouldn't work and she assured me that she wasn't hungry and that she wouldn't have to go to the potty. She doesn't understand what illegal means so she didn't care much about that part of my explanation. She amazes me how much she knows. She can now add numbers on her fingers up to ten. I read somewhere that toddlers ask on the average 300 questions a day. She reaches that by noon.

Since the last time I wrote, we went on vacation to Gatlinburg. We were with Adam's parents and grandmother for most of the week and then the last day, My dad's whole side of the family was there for my grandpa's 80th birthday party. We weren't able to stay for the whole weekend because we had to get back for church on Sunday but it was nice to see all of them. I guess distance does make the heart grow fonder. I feel like I'm always counting the days until we get to see family again. We will see my parents again this weekend and then Jan will come to visit the next weekend for Emma's birthday. Ok, sorry, I'm not much in the mood for poetic writing but that pretty much catches things up. I'll try to give you all a more inspiring upbeat post soon.

Love from above,


PS: Pictures:
Adam and Emma at the bird exhibit they had at the resort we stayed at in Gatlinburg
Emma and papa at the bird exhibit
Emma and my grandpa playing ball