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Showing posts from 2012

The first gleam of dawn

Proverbs 4:18 "The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day"

Ah, there is something so encouraging to me about this verse!  I am righteous because of what Christ has done for me - and though my light may not be quite as bright as I'd like it to be, it is slowly but surely brightening - and one day will be as bright as the sun on a beautiful summers afternoon!  What a wonderful and amazing promise!

Prayer: Lord, thank you that you don't leave us where we are at.  Thank you that your Holy Spirit continues to work in us and through us - helping us shine a little bit more with each passing moment. May we be encouraged knowing that You are at work in us and that one day we will be a perfect picture of your holiness.

Blessings, 1790 - 1805

1790. Getting a great bean bag sale that wouldn't have worked out if we hadn't just changed our plans
1791. My new kitchen island and blinds that my mom brought with her from Florida (though the blinds came with their share of heartache as we tried to install them)
1792. My mom joining us at church
1793. Our family visiting her in her new home for popcorn and a movie
1794. Avonlea standing on her own in the middle of the room - and how proud she is to be able to do so
1795. Working side by side with Matt as we try to improve our website
1796. Running errands with mom and the kids
1797. Enjoying tweaking my blog
1798. Getting lots of laundry done - and the kids playing together nicely while I did so
1799. Making 3 cauliflower pizza crusts ahead of time (even though my house smells like a giant cauliflower)
1800. A quiet evening reflecting on life, choices, and habits with a few dear friends
1801. My mom's new part time job and the incredibly sweet lady she is working with a…

Blessings 1757 - 1789

1757. Woody, Buzz Light Year and Jessie - Lecher versions :)
1758. A kind hearted young boy giving Blake and Cole his Woody & Buzz Light Year toys, when he found out they were dressing up like the Toy Story characters
1759. Jumping in balls and bounce houses with my three precious blessings...and their laughter whenever Matt turned off the air and we went "down, down, down"...and back "up up up"
1760. Praying with friends
1761. Two wide eyed boys watching the winters first snow
1762. Miniature snow men
1763. Celebrating a new friend's birthday and looking forward to the many blessings God is going to pour out on her this year
1764. Heavenly Bean Bags 10th year anniversary...and the ability to display it beautifully at the Artfull Gifts fine art show and Camden's festival of lights craft show.
1765. How Matt makes everything he touches beautiful & artistic
1766. The three day trip across the country that my mom and GiGi made...though it wasn't e…

1726-1756

1726. A hardworking husband that still puts his family first
1727. Morning snuggles with my early bird (Cole)
1728. A delightful fun filled, miracle filled, two week visit with Grandma (my mom)
1729. Grandma's desire to move to Maine, and lots of open doors
1730. Learning to trust in God's timing
1731. A two day women's retreat where I was able to spend time with a dear friend, make new friends and reflect on how much God has given me
1732. Matt and Grandma spending time together with the kids while I was gone - train rides, breakfasts at the diner, and enjoying our home
1733. Our newest blessing (due in January) receiving more attention than usual...women at the retreat noticed this big ol' belly of mine a lot more than people do when I have 3 other little ones by my side.
1734. Being served meals
1735. Finally giving in to the idea of floaties, actually finding them at the store (at the end of summer...and the last two pairs), and watching the kids enjoy the water li…

1706-1725

1706. Spontaneous evenings with dear friends
1707. Mini vacations/shopping trips
1708. Lots of beautiful fabrics from Auburn's fabric warehouse and of course, Marden's
1709. Blake and Cole helping carry fabric rolls that were bigger than they are
1710. Blake, Cole and Avonlea's delight in the water (at the hotel pool)
1711. New razors :)
1712. Boys on wood piles
1713. Boys (including daddys) throwing & stacking wood
1714. Cole's enthusiasm in the music/spoon banging tent at the Common ground fair
1715. The joy children bring to all ages
1716. Hay piles and big jumps
1717. Cole holding my hand the first 10 times he jumped - and then being ready to jump on his own (thankful that in most areas he still needs my hand)
1718. Avonlea maturing a months worth in 3 days time (pulling up, climbing stairs - wanting to walk etc..)
1719. Cole showing Avonlea the right way to eat watermelon (she was trying to eat it rind first) and then saying "Yeah, Avi" when she did …

1688 - 1705

1688. Blake consistently asking for Avonlea to be by his side
1689. Kiddo compliments from strangers
1690. Housework compliments from my hubby
1691. A lunch date in Camden with 3 of my favorite people - Blake, Cole & Avi
1692. Avi's continued progress...especially her new crawl/walk (crawling with legs in walking position)
1693. Beautiful weather - and kids that notice
1694. Cole seeing Jesus everywhere (even if its actually a civil war monument)
1695. Special outings made possible by GiGi
1696. The boys impromptu dance/song when they got their special outing money
1697. A new, much less expensive payroll company
1698. Blake & Cole asking to feel the baby kick (even though they can't really feel him yet)
1699. Governor's restaurant - specifically their mozzarella cheese sticks
1700. Friends that I miss - and the hope of reconnecting soon
1701. How well Cole is communicating
1702. Weekend plans
1703. A 2 day/3 night women's retreat at the end of September (in 14…

Photogifts

1667-1687

1667. Quiet mornings before kids wake up
1667. Reading the word and other inspiring books on my kindle
1668. A fun last minute road trip with a friend (in which I got a new charger for my kindle)
1669. REALLY good news from a friend's doctor concerning her HEALTHY baby girl
1670. God working miraculously in another friends job - after she asked me to pray about it ("The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective" James 5:16" KIDDING - I'm not exactly righteous...well, ok, ok - I am through his blood :)
1671. I am righteous through His blood
1672. I am learning how to make imperfect progress in many areas of my life
1673. Baking (yes, I baked) yummy sugar/flour free cookies
1674. Blake and Cole throwing a ball with Avonlea - and her sheer delight
1675. Realizing (and recording) how much Blake and Cole have grown in 6 months
1676. How much joy stickers bring to Blake and Cole (and to mommy who uses them to encourage them to do their chores)
1677. How p…

Out of control

I finally got my hands on the book Unglued that I mentioned in my previous post.  I haven't even finished the second chapter and I'm already feeling inspired enough to write again.  Sweet.  Inspiration feels so good these days, and having the energy to follow through with the inspiration - even better!  Anyway, back to Lysa TerKeurst (the author of Unglued).  So she had another one liner that really stuck out to me... "I can face things that are out of my control and not act out of control."  She proceeded to tell of a time when her computer broke down mid project and she totally lost it (or should I say became unglued).  She ended up having to get a new computer, but luckily the tech-support guy was able to make a copy of her hard drive - so she still had access to pertinent files.  A few months later, her new laptop was stolen.  She held it together a little better this time, even though she thought she'd truly lost everything.  Eventually she remembered t…

Imperfect progress

More than a year ago my mother and I started a project.  Puzzles.  My kids love puzzles.  There were pieces everywhere - and broken boxes - and missing boxes (not to mention missing pieces).  I had the bright idea of getting rid of all the boxes, numbering the puzzles (so when I find a random piece I know where to put it) and hanging them, in order of course, in perfectly crafted plastic bags.  So we started.  We numbered the puzzles...well at least half of them - and then decided to go shopping for the perfect bags and/or rack to hang them on.  We couldn't find either.  So there I was with a whole bunch of puzzles out of their boxes and shoved into zip lock bags (and not even the kind with those cool slider things).  Well, there wasn't time to finish the project - so all the bags got shoved into a box and plopped in the basement.  I kept thinking I'd either find the perfect bags or at least borrow my husbands gromitt machine and make the perfect bags.  Well it never …

1649 - 1666

1649. Avonlea's delight as she puts things in and takes things out of small boxes, cups etc...
1650. A receptive heart
1651. Blake looking for ways to help his mommy, daddy and siblings on a regular basis
1652. Losing the letter "E" of a vowel game - and then, finding it after praying I would
1653. Helping a friend create an inviting and comfy place to chat with friends
1654. Enjoying time with friends
1655. A curious little mouse
1656. Dishwasher soap - you don't realize how much you appreciate it until you run out :)
1657. Thankful list reminders on pre-scribbled paper
1658. Watching Avonlea interact happily and bring joy to her Drs and therapists
1659. Begging God for contentment and joy, feeling so far from it - and Him pouring out more and more blessing - until I couldn't help but smile
1660. A friend who prayed for me as soon as I asked her to
1661. Watching God answer her prayers
1662. Being used despite myself
1663. An unexpected break and evening with a …

Walls

Wow, it has been a while since I've blogged (other than my gifts list)- and, to be honest I wasn't sure if I'd blog again.  I've been putting up walls in so many areas of my life.  Letting hurts control me...not wanting to let anyone in to this broken soul of mine.  But, tonight I realized that the walls aren't protecting me - their just hurting me...and probably, hurting others.  So here I am.  I'm ready to stop protecting myself and start being myself again.  The thickest wall I've built has been between God and I - but luckily he sees right through the bricks I lay.  He loves me - bricks and all.  He is longing for me to accept His love.  He isn't witholding His love until I  read 15 chapters of scripture a day or spend hours in an uninterrupted prayer closet (though I'm sure He longs for me to long for Him).  He just keeps loving me, and keeps pouring out blessing after blessing.  His unconditional love is something that I will spend my lifetime…

1628-1648

1628. A friend painting my toe nails
1629. Avonlea giggling, jumping and swinging in her Johnny Jump Up.
1630. God's patience with me.
1631. Intercessors
1632. Blake asking if we could pray for Avonlea at dinner (after he brought up the bible story where Jesus heals a mans eyes)
1633. Sharing our favorites/least favorites at dinner
1634. Friends coming over for dinner and entertaining & enjoying our kiddos for more than an hour
1635. Skyping with GiGi & Gdad
1636. Running out of clothes for Avonlea, & getting beautiful dresses and pjs from GiGi
1637. Blake - after getting a new plate from GiGi "I am so, so, so, so happy - I think I'll go out and buy GiGi a big ol' present."
1638. God's sovereignty through difficult times - both in my life and in the lives of those I care about
1639. Answered prayer - in the form of a table and chairs
1640. Unexpected time to myself
1641. Psalm 127:3
1642. Playing "vowel games" with the boys
1643. Daddy a…

Photogifts - a bit behind...and still not caught up :)

1607 - 1627

1607. A care package straight from GiGi's heart
1608. Avonlea blowing kisses
1609. Petting a camel
1610. Evening strolls in down town belfast
1611. Blake and Cole throwing sticks for a cute dog named Una
1612. Pink clouds
1613. Ice cream cones filled with animal feed
1614. Cole's expression each time he shouted "he eat it mamma, he eat it" (referring to the goat he was feeding)
1615. Chicken on the grill
1616. Avonlea in the sand box
1617. The boys running from their dad (who happened to have a hose in his hand)
1618. Reading lessons with the boys ("The ordinary parents guide to teaching reading")
1619. Close calls in the water - so thankful for God's protection
1620. Kids piled up in a small car
1621. Daily rides to Seth's (our mechanic) - luckily he lives on our street :)
1622. Cole making Avonlea laugh on a regular basis
1623. Blake counting down the days to things he is looking forward to - the latest, "my cousin's house"
1624. Bea…

1589-1606

1589. A change of plans (thought I was staying home with the kids and end up having a family adventure)
1590. Tricycles cruising down the mini mall halls (where the sign shop is)
1591. A very sweet and encouraging note from a sister in Christ
1592. Blake, Cole and Daddy playing their first round of Hungry, Hungry, Hippos
1593. Broccoli slaw - I never knew it existed
1594. Cole's constant affection towards his sister
1595. Blake counting down until his cousin's dance
1596. All three kids sitting through and enjoying the entire dance - for 3 hours :)
1597. Little and big dancers with beautiful smiles
1598. Avonlea dancing right along
1599. An unexpected dinner invitation
1600. Chatting with old friends until wee hours of the night - while their children entertained ours
1601. The sound of Blake's laugh as he jumped on a trampoline
1602. Learning to look forward to Christ's return - on good days and bad
1603. Encouraging words from a father figure
1604. Good decisions...l…

1576 - 1588

1576. Heat lightning
1577. Last minute adventures
1578. An incredibly generous husband
1579. Blake excitedly running up our sidewalk with a bouquet of flowers for his mommy
1580. A wonderful Mother's day spent with my mom, my grandmother, my mother in law and of course Matt and the kids
1580. Stumbling across a restaurant in Boothbay where Moms eat free for Mother's day
1581. Curtain shopping
1582. Spending almost an entire day with just my grandma
1583. Seeing a dear friend who lives an hour and a half away two days in a row (the second day being a total surprise)
1584. Riding the trolly in Bath with 6 tow headed kids (ok, well maybe 5 considering the newest one is totally bald) and two wonderful gals
1585. God's unconditional love and grace
1586. The world's cutest apron - made even cuter because of who bought it for me.
1587. Cole's great grandmother buying him a stuffed owl without even knowing he loves owls
1588. Blake organizing the shoes in our mudroom (whic…

1567 - 1575

1567. Tiny braids
1568. Ticklish hands
1569. Drop in visitors
1570. A side of hot fudge
1571. "School time" and how excited Blake gets about it
1572. Accountability in prayer
1573. Christ's sacrifice
1574. Counting down days with my kids (Grandma and GiGi are coming in 5 days)
1575. New mercies every morning

1551-1566

1551. Morning kicks and laughs from a baby girl SO EXCITED to see her mommy :)
1552. The boys playing together more and arguing less
1553. The look on Blake's face when he saw his birthday cake (diggers and dumpers).
1554. A baby doll bed complete with home made sheets, pillow & blanket - made for Avonlea with love by her grammy.
1555. Red polka dot pajamas on a fluffy haired baby girl.
1556. Morning snuggles with my FOUR YEAR OLD!
1557. Fixing my computer with a simple google search
1558. Avonlea saying "more" in sign language
1559. Remembering Cole dancing to Easter morning worship
1560. Playing frisbee with my boys
1561. Avonlea playing in the sandbox
1562. Friends that pray for us
1563 An adorable surgery patient
1564. Looking at my daughter - and her looking directly back
1565. Chubby hands running under cool water (Avonlea's, not mine :) )
1566. Boys picking flowers for mommy


1538 - 1550

1538. A new home for my computer (upstairs off the beaten path)
1539. Two boys giggling, laughing and quite thrilled tossing balls around
1540. Cleaning our mudroom
1541. Organizing my desk
1542. The way Avi looks at her brothers
1543. Getting a second opinion (the same) about Avonlea's eyes (infantile esotropia) - surgery would be a hard decision if there were varying opinions.
1544. The Lord's prayer
1545. A sweet email from my dad
1546. The boys in full winter gear playing in the sandbox
1547. Knowing that won't be necessary too much longer (the winter gear)
1548. A daily walk with the Creator of the universe
1549. A very unexpected compliment from someone I'm pretty insecure around (perhaps God's trying to tell me something)
1550. The fact that God communicates with His people - and that somehow, I'm one of His people :)

My flesh

Those of you who know me well (ok, even just a little) know I have a tendency to beat myself up.  I often think things like, if I was a really a Christian I wouldn't have such a strong battle with sin.  I have always felt like my sin nature was beating my new nature.  But last night a good friend said something so wonderfully freeing and encouraging.  She said your battle is not against your sin nature - you don't have a sin nature.  It is against your flesh.  At first I didn't really understand the difference...even as Matt and I were driving home I still didn't get it.  I pondered it as I fell asleep and when I woke up this morning it just hit me.  Yes, I was born with a sin nature - we all are!  But the moment I accepted Christ as my Savior I was (and am) a new creation.  Where does that leave me though?  I still struggle with sin. Who cares whether we call it "a sin nature" or "flesh".  I was praying about that very thing and I asked God to give…

1514 - 1537

1514. Seven turkeys in our front yard - two thrilled boys.
1515. A week of incredibly rejuvenating weather and thankfulness for all seasons
1516. II Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
1517. Being encouraged by the struggles and weaknesses of fellow mommies this weekend - remembering that I am not alone, parenting is challenging for all and God is glorified in our weaknesses as they lead us to His throne.
1518. Holding Matt's hand
1519. The sacrificial love of a dear family who watched, played with, loved on and encouraged our three kiddos this weekend
1520. Spending time with friends I've missed - even those who only live a few miles away
1521. Feeling the prayers of a friend
1522. Jesus is ENOUGH - http://kissesfromkatie.blogspot.com/ (highly recommend reading Katie's incredible journey - she's given up, and therefor gained, everything for the Lord, and yet it is still in her weakness (and honesty regarding it) that I…

1500 - 1513

1500. Chunky baby legs
1501. Compassion where there was once anger
1502. Tricycles on the Belfast bridge
1503. Praying with Matt
1504. Christ's blood that covers me
1505. The book Because He loves me, and the friend who gave it to me
1506. The song "His banner over me is love" which keeps running through my mind
1507. The promise that "He who begins a good work in me will be faithful to complete it"
1508. A faith family that lovingly, encouragingly accepts us even when we are making difficult decisions
1509. Friends who not only pray for me, but ask for prayer
1510. Avonlea's bottom two teeth which I can almost always see - because of the HUGE grin that she wears constantly
1511. Singing boys
1512. Hymns - and pandora
1513. Family, both immediate and extended, that love me no matter what.

1486-1499, Ephesians 4:25-32

Blessings 1486. Matt encouraging me (and himself) to go to bed by 9:00 - and me doing so with a really good attitude (ok, the last part is an exaggeration lie ;P) 1487. Feeling so much better physically and emotionally because of more sleep and less sugar (both, thanks to Matt) 1488. Blake and Cole playing hide and seek - and cracking up every time they find each other 1489. Avonlea's pig tails  1490. A weekend just around the corner 1491. An encouraging "chat" then phone call from a friend I haven't spent much time with lately 1492. A grocery store run/parking lot chat with a "bosom buddy" 1493. Blake 1494. Cole 1495. Avonlea
Blessings in the word (Ephesians 4:25-32) 1496. The following examples of the "Putting off/Putting on"concept  - Put off FALSEHOOD - Put on SPEAKING THE TRUTH   - Put off STEALING - Put on WORK/SHARING  - Put off UNWHOLESOME TALK - Put on BUILDING OTHERS UP  - Put off BITTERNESS, RAGE, ANGER, MALICE - Put on KINDNESS, COMPASSION, …

1470-1485, Ephesians 4:17-20

Blessings
1470. Matt hiding all the sweets in the house from me - and me not going on a massive sweet hunt (YES, this is a blessing :-P)
1471. Cole "alright, LETS GO" - his enthusiastic reply to just about everything these days
1472. Blake giving Cole potty lessons
1473. Matt swinging by the grocery store just about every afternoon - and with a good attitude
1474. Hope that one of these days I'll get our meal plan and shopping days organized
1475. A God who loves me despite my imperfections
1476. A tough conversation with friends turning out just fine
1477. Friends

Blessings in the word
1478. MUST - leaves no doubts
1479. the LIFE OF GOD
1480. The reminder not to HARDEN my HEART
1481. the WAY OF LIFE I learned when I HEARD ABOUT CHRIST
1482. TRUTH IS IN JESUS
1483. The concept of PUTTING OFF and PUTTING ON
1484. The hope of BEing made new (and knowing way down deep that even though it doesn't feel like it some days, this has already begun and will be a life long proces…

1454-1469, Ephesians 4:14-16

Blessings
1454. Not feeling like reading the word, doing it anyway - feeling rejuvenated
1455. 3 construction paper/glitter snowmen on our fridge (made by daddy, blake & cole)
1456. the X song (the boys singing "I get an X" every time they say, please, thank you, or yes mommy - even though half the time they never actually add their Xs)
1457. Matt making me go to bed early despite my arguments against it - and him being right, it definitely feels better in the morning
1458. An incredibly fun and busy week, followed by a week of catch up...enjoying both (well, most of the time)
1459. Cole waking up from his nap and singing "happy day to you" - remembering we were heading to a birthday party
1460. Visiting old friends and being encouraged by new ones
1461. Being late (like getting somewhere halfway through), but still being welcomed and loved
1462. Superbowl parties, or as our church called it a "large screen viewing event"
1463. Avonlea asleep on her d…

1441-1448c, Ephesians 4:7-13

Blessings
1441. Cole and Avonlea falling asleep with me on the couch (different times but on the same day)...and the fact that I am truly treasuring these moments, as I know how quickly they will pass
1442. Looking over at Blake during Sunday's worship service and seeing him with a confused look on his face and his hand in the air (imitating members of the worship team)...what a wonderful teachable moment :)
1443. Avonlea imitating my smile over and over as the praise team sang
1444. Telling a friend who was starting a bible study that leaving my house regularly with my 3 little ones is just too tiring to commit to - and the next thing I new the bible study was in my living room
1445. Cole singing "Jesus loves me" as I type out ways that he loves me
1446. Daddy, Blake and Cole making snow forts for hours
1447. A thought provoking sermon by Matt Chandler (who I've actually never heard of, but enjoyed the sermon because of a friend's recommendation)
1448. A compliment f…