Monday, January 29, 2007

Lemon Cake Update

"I really don't feel good." -- Jazzy, the bad dog

It turns out that when a very bad dog eats a full 6" round lemon-filled wedding cake top she gets very, very sick.

Here are two dog-vomiting facts for you (because I KNOW that's why you read this blog):
  • There is so much cream, sugar, and lemony goodness in lemon cake, that her vomit does not smell like typical acidic vomit at all. It smells completely...lemony.
  • A dog will wait outside a very long time without vomiting just so that the moment they are back in their safe, warm house, they can vomit at your feet. Trust me.
The good news is that my dog's demonstration of diet failure (eating a full cake just because it's there and tastes good... total lack of portion control), and my privilege of cleaning up lemon puke goo again and again and again, just might be the motivation I need to be successful on my eating plan.

Next time you think of overeating on something sweet, just imagine throwing-up lemon cake for 6 hours (or more?) continuously. Oh yes, it's that good.

Big trouble

The other day day a friend of mine came over, and brought me a cake. She has been taking cake decorating classes. She doesn't like to bring home her artwork...too many continual calories! So, we got two "wedding cakes" - one lemon and one chocolate. They are beautiful - she does great work! Really, very talented.

We had eaten a bit of the chocolate one and then tossed what was left, it was much too much. Very good though. We hadn't even cut into the lemon one. I was debating if there was a neighbor I could bless with it.

And then something bad happened today while I was at the dentist (which, I think is ironic). My oh my.


Turned into this:

By this:

Vomit yet to be found.

Big, big trouble - definitely found.

The benefit of putting the dog outside after she is thoroughly ready to die from her scolding is (aside from a better vomiting place than my wood floor) that one is able to laugh hysterically and call the husband and continue laughing hysterically. Many of the orange flowers were stuck on with toothpicks, which I envisioned poking the roof of her mouth. She left me a pile of bent toothpicks. Ha ha ha. I also envision her struggling to lick all the frosting off the saranwrap that was covering the cake...and getting it all stuck on her nose. Ha ha ha. Any illness she gets, she FULLY deserves. I hope all that lemon filling wreaks havoc on her tummy. Harumph!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Goodbye little house!

We are in the process of selling our little house. We've staged it to sell (although it's almost all our stuff - the staging lady brought had to bring in very little). It looks great! I am so proud of hubs for all his hard work. Each project seemed to make a lovely, but somewhat small difference. However, looking at the before/after pictures of moving in and out show that we made a BIG difference. It also shows that it's important to stage a house to sell - don't sell it empty!

I wanted to post pictures of the before/after. Also, I've posted before about a few of the projects: replacing the front door, building the fireplace, etc., and have promised after pictures each time!

Goodbye little house. We'll miss you!

(Note: I cannot get the pictures and captions to line up correctly and I'm tired of fighting it. You get the point. The dark/uncolorful ones are the before shots, the sunny/colorful ones are the after shots. )

Little house upon move-in - the BEFORE (sorry it's so dark - it gets dark at about 4pm in the winter here):

And the after (after the snow melted):

Please be in prayer with us for the new family that God has planned to enjoy our colorful little house. There is one offer on it now and we're just doing the typical back and forth. I'm not getting too excited until after the inspection.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

To be known

My church is having a women's gathering this Friday night, with the specific purpose of getting to know each other on a deeper level. I think a few of the gals who have been at the church forever have recently realized that we now have many more women who have started coming (myself included), and we don't all know each other very well. The "old group" knows each other really well, and maybe haven't been very purposeful about getting to know the newer ones. I'm glad they've realized it and am glad they are reaching out.

I feed off social gatherings, so I'm very excited. I love to know others and long to be known. I love getting to know a woman, but hate that initial phase of just saying "hi, how are you...oh, good..." to one another and talking through the pleasantries. I long to get past that and am sad when I realize that I won't be able to move beyond it with a particular friend. I only have a couple female friends right now who really know me - one whom I've been able to "move beyond" with, and I love it. I cherish them. I'm actually not a very private person (that probably isn't a shock to you, given that I write about everything on here. I tend to lay it all out there in hopes that a gal will see something in me that clicks with her and we'll become friends. I don't know what to do with people that are overly private.

At the women's gathering on Friday, we're going to interview a few women to get to know them more. There will be a woman who has been at the church for a long time, one for a medium amount of time, and one for a pretty short amount of time. Guess what? They asked me to be the "shorter time" person. I instantly said yes because I'm comfortable talking in groups, I'm not that private, and I really long to be known and develop deeper friendships.

They sent me some sample interview questions. This is just supposed to be an interactive way for me to tell my testimony and share about myself, so I'm supposed to let them know which questions apply to my "story" and which don't.

I've read over the questions and decided that this is really intimidating! I've scheduled this evening to be set aside just for reflecting. I'm not sure what I'm going to say for most of these questions. I think it really would be easier to just tell my story, but I'd probably leave out some things that the questions will bring out.

Here are a sampling:
  • Was there a significant event in your life that brought you to salvation or drew you closer to the Lord? Tell us about the context and how it affected you.
  • If your salvation brought any dramatic changes to your life, paint a before and after picture for us.
  • Tell us about a miracle you've witnessed and the impact it had on your life.
  • What sacrifices has God led you to make? What have you learned?
  • What were your dreams before you met Christ and how have they changed?
These are just a few. Oh my. I've been so busy lately; I'm not feeling very reflective. I'm also feeling a little depressed, so I need to clear my head and ask God to show me what is true in my life, what He has done, and how He has worked. I want to give Him the glory for all that is good, but I'm in a mood where "all the good" isn't the first thing that comes to mind.

I'm very thankful that God is merciful and kind, and He is constant - regardless of my mood. God is who He is, and that my moods don't define Him.

Friday, January 19, 2007

New favorite music

I have a new musical discovery: Rodrigo Y Gabriela. I LOVE this group. It's just some amazing guitar work, sans vocals. I usually prefer vocal music, since my voice is my instrument, but this duo doesn't need it. It's music that has so much energy. It makes me get up and dance, or get to work, or do SOMETHING because you can't just sit still while it's on. It's now included in my "get going" genre of music.

They are awesome. (Well, the music is; I don't care for the album cover... just ignore it and listen to the sample tracks.) They have an interesting history - from Mexico, but made the charts in Ireland while living there.

Click here to check out the CD and sample tracks. (No, I don't get anything for this...I'm just an excited fan.)

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Life update

A few random things...

Westminster Shorter Catechism, Question 3:
Q. What do the Scriptures principally teach?

A. The Scriptures principally teach, what man is to believe concerning God,[5] and what duty God requires of man.[6]

I think our Christian culture has lost this purpose. I love how simple the catechism makes things. The Bible is not complicated, nor is it a "nice to have." It is what we are to believe about God and what God requires of us. How simple. How important. I need to make it more important in my life and know this book more.


Today is my "off" day from work. I have a lot to do, but am lacking alertness and motivation. Really, I'm feeling a bit stuck because I feel like I SHOULD go workout, and I don't want to, so I'm having trouble getting up to do anything else because I know I should workout first. Grrr.

Our old house was put on the market on Monday. It is so weird to see it online. I hope others like it. It's pretty colorful inside, so I know some people will really dislike it. I made a big apple crisp, but instead of putting it in a big 9x13 pan, I put it into 7 or 8 little mini loaf pans and froze them. I defrost one each night, and I go bake one at the little house each day. The house smells cinnamony, and I get to eat a bit of apple crisp each day. =) You know, for the sake of selling the house.

So, I must go. I think I'm going to just skip my workout and get over the guilt, put away the ton of clean dishes in the kitchen and wash the dirty ones, then go dust and do my BSF and bake at the old house. Hopefully, I'll get to spend some time organizing my office later today. Oh, and I can NOT forget to make dinner today, which I've been doing lately. =) Duh.

That's it - my day!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

101 Things about Me

One hundred things about me for the 100th post, as it goes in the traditions of bloggy-ville. Alas, I missed it, and shall post one hundred, plus one.

1. I am 28 years old, for a few weeks now.
2. I'm a Christian, and can't remember a time when I wasn't, although it becomes more real and significant every year.
3. I have been married for 7 years.
4. I was 20 when I got married - we laughed about how I could not buy any wine or champagne to have at our wedding.
5. We had our honeymoon on Salt Spring Island in BC, Canada, where you can drink wine at 19.
6. That wasn't the actual reason we went there - it's really just a beautiful place.
7. And not too far away from school, since we only had a week off between spring and summer quarter.
8. We don't have any children yet, although I'd like some.
9. I am the same age my mom was when she had me.
10. I was a military kid and went to 4 different elementary schools, but then stayed in one town after that.
11. I was in colorguard in high school.
12. I still play with my flag, saber, and riffle.
13. I was also in the choir and jazz choir, and it's the one part of high school I really miss. Well, I miss colorguard too, but I sort of long to be in a performing choir.
14. I have a three year old nephew and a two month old niece.
15. My nephew and I have started emailing each other, with the help of my sister.
16. My sister and I never talk, so this might be a way for us to start.
17. I have lots and lots of aunts and uncles and a ton of cousins.
18. I have six grandparents and they are all still alive.
19. Of all my great-grandparents, I only knew my maternal great-grandma, Grammy, and she died when I was 18.
20. We had to fly to So Cal for the funeral, and my parents wouldn't let my boyfriend come because it was meant for our close family only (you know, in case he was temporary).
21. We got engaged the next year and I with he had been there.
22. I am one of the rare people that LOVE my extended family. I love, love, love family gatherings.
23. My sister and I are the oldest cousins on both sides of the family.
24. Of all my cousins, I only have two that are girls.
25. I'm close with my girl cousin that is 16 years old. We like to have her come stay the weekend with us every couple months. She was here this weekend.
26. I hope she will listen to my advice at an age when she won't listen to her parents.
27. I love sailing.
28. My parents had a sailboat when I was born and had to get rid of when when I was 6 and we moved away. All of our free time and vacation time was spent on the boat
29. We chartered a sailboat twice when I was a teenager.
30. When I was in college, my parents bought another boat.
31. It makes for a fantastic FREE vacation for me and hubs.
32. You have to be really close with your parents to go on 10 day vacations with them, when you are sharing a 36' hotel room with them, and you can't really leave the hotel room.
33. Last year they sold their boat and bought a powerboat. It's nicer for them, but changes the social dynamic on the boat.
34. We had a great FREE vacation with them, but we really missed the sailboat.
35. Hubs and I would really like to get our own sailboat, but then it's not free. At all.
36. And we know we won't use it enough.
37. When I was 2 or 3, I fell in the water at the marina and almost drowned.
38. By God's mercy, I was totally fine.
39. Later I told my sister that I saw purple and pink polka-doted sharks under the water.
40. I got lost at the zoo once when I was 3 or 4.
41. I was totally focused watching some animal. The church group all left, and I didn't.
42. The zoo security people found me. I was crying a lot and wouldn't tell them my name. You aren't supposed to tell your name to strangers.
43. I had a postcard with me that someone sent me, and it had my name on it.
44. I got to play with their cat in their office until my mom found me.
45. I still remember this - not just the story.
46. I've noticed that I tend to be really observant about lost kids. At a theme park or fair, I will happen to notice kids at the moment they realize they can't find their adult. The joy on their face instantly changes to dread and panic.
47. I stop and watch them for a few seconds to see if they spot their adult. They always do, and I go about my day.
48. I try to not talk to them too soon - I don't want their parent to turn around and be freaked out that a strange woman is talking to their kid, but I want to be there in case they really are lost.
49. I've realized that I see these situations a lot, when my friends don't notice at all.
50. I think it's because I got lost at the zoo when I was little.
51. I usually feel like something tragic in my life is going to happen soon.
52. I was convinced I was going to die driving to or from Bible study last night (our roads are super icy at the moment).
53. I put lipstick on while waiting at a red light, so that when the medics found me, I would at least have lipstick on.
54. I do things like that a lot. I'm not trying to be funny - I'm totally serious and calm when it happens. I just seems like the logical thing to do.
55. I got a sewing machine for my birthday and celebrated when I threaded the needle by myself.
56. I haven't made anything yet, although I have stuff to make a baby wrap thing for a friend.
57. But I don't know how to use bias tape, and that's my hold up.
58. I was in 4-H when I was young and made lots of things.
59. I joined 4-H when because I wanted to make a roll-top desk.
60. I never did, but I made a custom-crafted bird house, and a lovely step stool that I still use.
61. I made $120 at the fair one summer when I was 10.
62. I got a blue ribbon on my 4-H record book each year for three years.
63. One year at the fair, I earned the title of "Junior girl with the most points" for gardening.
64. We used to just pick everything that was ripe and take it to the fair.
65. I feel useless in my home-making abilities compared to when I was 10.
66. I got a pressure cooker last year for Christmas because I'd like to can soup.
67. We haven't used it yet, but I'd still like to.
68. I have no idea where to start.
69. I'd like to sew clothes for my kids when I have kids.
70. I feel like I should learn to sew before I have kids.
71. I require 8-9 hours of sleep, so I'm not sure how I'll survive when I do have kids.
72. I hope I have kids like that to do crafts.
73. My nephew hates to color or draw. He won't do it.
74. When I was little, I loved to color. I absolutely loved crayons.
75. I had a crayon apron that had little slots to hold a bunch of crayons in it.
76. I have an old school paper from kindergarten somewhere that says my favorite thing to do when I arrived at school was to color.
77. When I was in kindergarten, I like a boy named Peter.
78. That same year, I got in trouble once for walking home backwards - it took me a very, very long time.
79. I love lotion and candles.
80. My dad is very sensitive to scents, so this was problematic growing up.
81. My husband hates lotion stores because they smell so strongly.
82. He got me a bottle of lotion I wanted for Christmas.
83. I appreciate this gift very much because I know he suffered to go in that store.
84. I have curly hair, but I usually straighten it because I recently got my hair cut short than I wanted and it looks weird curly at the moment.
85. It was straight when I was little, but turned curly with puberty.
86. When I was in high school, it was too curly to straighten - it would just turn frizzy.
87. I'm losing my curl, and it's very easy to straighten now.
88. We took a vacation to St. Thomas a few years ago and my hair demanded that it be curly while we were there. Way too humid.
89. That was a pain, but I liked knowing that my hair really was still curly.
90. I'm afraid that when I have children, the curl will go away entirely.
91. I still think of myself a a curly-haired person, even though I'm sure there are some people who have only seen me with straight hair.
92. My dad always wished I had straight hair - he likes straight hair better.
93. My grandma and aunt too.
94. I think it's insulting when people tell you they don't like something about you that you can't change...especially when these people gave you the genes that made you that way.
95. I'm always surprised when comments like this are made. It would be like if my parents told me they wished I had brown eyes instead of blue because brown eyes are prettier.
96. I have blue eyes, and they've never made that comment.
97. I love chocolate.
98. I really like milk chocolate more than dark chocolate, although I know it's so trendy to like dark chocolate better.
99. There's nothing better than milk chocolate and ice cold diet coke.
100. I anticipate that heaven will be filled with yummy things like milk chocolate and diet coke, only they won't cause disease or fatness, and we will have the self-control to stop when we've enjoyed the flavor just a bit.
101. I do wonder about what God chooses to eat, if He does eat, and what true sinless self-control really looks like.

The end.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Where are the babies?

If you've been reading my blog for long, you know that I want children very much, and hubs and I are waiting for God to let "us" know when it's time for us to be parents. God is teaching me patience! I've given my desire to God and am trusting Him and His perfect timing, and I am happy to report that it has been going pretty well. Life's worries are much easier when you are trusting God with them!

Yet, with the desire for children, it is a bit hard. First, there's the whole hormonal thing. If God wants me to wait, it would be much easier if He could please miraculously change my hormones so that they are on the same page as Him.

Then, there are the social issues. The last few days, I've been bombarded (well, it has felt like bombardment) with family and church comments. Oh, you know the comments (unless you had babies at 22, in which case, you probably got other comments). Let me just say: I am 28 years old. I didn't think that was ancient. I'm not even 28 and almost a whole year - nope, I JUST turned 28. So, you know, I'm barely there. Still pretty mid-twenties....almost. The world has now categorized me and hubs as a couple who is choosing to have children late in life, if at all. Apparently, we're "focusing on our careers" instead of a family (ugh...I've heard that so many times). I don't think we look as young as we used to and we've crossed some sort of social barrier. Apparently, I'm now old when it comes to having babies.

We had family Christmas last weekend. My sister has an almost two-month old, so there was a lot of baby talk. One aunt, who did choose to have babies later (started around 35), was talking with me as if I were making the same choice...talking about how great it is to have babies later. She thought we could bond on this issue, compared to my sister who had children younger (younger being 27!) like my mom (pregnant at 25). In another discussion, we were talking about how many children I might want and the benefits or struggles of different choices on this issue. One aunt teasingly pointed out that in order to have any of these amounts, one must first start having babies. Ahhh.... so THAT's the problem!

Now, I'm going to interrupt myself to comment here. If YOU are one who ever makes comments to people about having children, you need to be really, really careful. I've had so many comments made. Often this is a little painful just because I desperately want children very badly. The commenters usually assume that I don't want children and that's why we don't have children. Ouch. However, I have thought about how painful the comments would be if we actually were trying to have kids, but were having fertility problems (which we aren't, praise God). You just never know.

Ok...back to my story. In church yesterday, we met a young couple (without kids) who were visiting. Another church member knew the visitors and made sure that we had met them. Specifically us. Why? Well, let me tell you. Hubs and I (realized this yesterday) that we are the only youngish, married couple in church that doesn't have kids. WE needed to meet this visiting couple because we were the only ones they would meet that were married but didn't have kids. Really - there are single people, there are young couples with young kids, there are older couples, old people, etc., but only one couple who is married and doesn't have kids. Me.

So, I've gotten frustrated. This is not how I want to be defined.

I'm not sure why it hit me today, but I realized today that I'm the age now that my mom was when she had me. She was 28. Except... I was the youngest and last child (of two), and I was born two weeks after she turned 28. So, if I were my mom, I'd have a little one running around and be extremely pregnant with an amazing little girl at the moment. Actually, I was a bit late, so if I were pregnant on my mom's time line, I'd be due right To me there is something a bit special and meaningful about doing something at the same time as one who has gone before you, and I'm missing this one.

So, today, I was a bit down. Enough that I wanted to come home, sit hubs down, and really try to explain very logically why really truly NOW is the time and we really should start trying to have kids now. Really.

Thankfully, God is in control and not me. Thankfully, I had a 20 minute drive home and was listening to some good hymns. The song Blessed Assurance came on:
Perfect submission, all is at rest
I in my Savior am happy and blest,
Watching and waiting, looking above,
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.

I need to submit to the Lord's timing, and my husband's plans. My joy is to come from the Lord, and nothing else.

I think back to how much I've changed over the seven years I've been married. I've changed a lot. My theology has changed a LOT. My thoughts about God, doctrine, how to be a good wife, how to be a homemaker, the importance of these things, how to teach children, what to teach children... all of these things have changed drastically.

I think God is preparing me, His child, to raise children that will glorify Him. If I were to take this timing into my own hands, I will only mess it all up because I won't be ready (in His standards) to be a mother for the children He is going to give me. Maybe He's got some really difficult kids in store for me and so I need more pre-training. If He does, that's ok. All I know, is that the only one who does know is God. I trust Him.

And finally, for something totally unrelated, this is my 100th post! But, I only just realized that and I'm posting this anyway. I'll do 100+1 things about me for my 101st post. =)

Read your Bible

With all the talk of new year's resolutions, there seems to be a lot around about two topics: losing weight and reading the Bible more. I'll save the weight loss for another post.

My pastor spoke yesterday about reading the Bible. He thought it was a fitting sermon to start the year with: Read your Bible!!! His sermon was great - informative, applicable, motivating, convicting, and even pretty funny. If you want to hear it, you can download it here (1/7).

I woke up this morning and looked up my next Catechism question. This week begins Question 2 from the Westminster Shorter Catechism:

Q. 2. What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
A. The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments,[3] is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.[4]

Basically, how can we know God? By His Word. How can you know how to glorify Him? Find out in His Word. It all comes back to His Word.

I can also talk about this another way... Why am I feeling lost and alone? I'm not in the Word enough. Why don't I feel like God is a little distant? I'm not in the Word enough. Why am I so distracted in life? I'm not in the word enough. It all comes back to His Word.

Hubs and I started thinking about our Bibles and Bible Study tools. We have a small amount of money set aside for "continuing education" per year. Enough if one of us wants to take a course at a local community college, or take a community class or something like that. We're thinking we might get a good set of Bible Study reference books and use our continuing education money for it.

I also have a tendency to have too many Bibles. Yet, here I am again. There are two Bible features I've just discovered. First: do you know they sell wide-margin Bibles or Journaling Bibles for taking notes in the margins? I've dreamed of something like this, but didn't know they actually sell them. Also, our pastor mentioned something I've never heard of: an interleaved Bible. In an interleaved Bible every other page is blank on both sides. You can buy them in some places, although it seems hard to find, or you can have a book binder re-bind your Bible this way.

I don't know where this is all going except to say that I need to read my Bible more. I am convicted and compelled, and now I just need to do it.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Cool Christmas Gift

As a Christmas gift for hub's, I got him an unframed (we'll get it framed ourselves) leaf from a 400 year old Geneva Bible. (I clicked thru Shannon's site, to support this new business to get it.)

I really didn't know the history of the Geneva Bible, but it's really cool - all goes back to my rebellious Puritan ancestors. The Geneva Bible was written and used before the King James version; it was what Calvin and Knox would have used, John Bunyan, Shakespeare, and what would have been brought to America on the Mayflower. An unframed leaf was only $25, which I thought was a great price for something so cool.

I checked with the site owners to see if there was a way to select (even from a list of options) which passage we would be getting. I really didn't want to end up with a 400 year old page of the begots. It would still be cool, for just being a leaf from a Geneva Bible, but not nearly so cool as Jesus' birth, Jesus' death, the resurrection, any one of my favorite stories in Genesis or Exodus, a section of very cool writing by Paul - preferably one with a sarcastic comment included. As I was informed that there was no way to pick my selection, I ordered it anyway, trusting that the Lord was in charge of this too, and He would send the Word that was meant for Hub's and I.

When my leaf came, I couldn't figure out at first which section of the Bible it was from - there was nothing in the packaging that clarified. At first I thought it was Genesis (and I was very excited!) because it kept talking about Lot. Hubs loved the gift - thought it was as cool as I did. After all our breakfast was eaten and presents had been opened, we hoped on an Internet Bible search tool to figure out what Bible passage we had received.

It turned out that "lot" was referring to land, not the person. Oops. We got a section from Joshua, talking about the distribution of land. I don't even think I'd read this section before. As I read it online, I was disappointed. Who gets which piece of land is pretty close on the boredom-scale with who begot who. But then I kept reading and realized that this passage was meant for us and a big smile spread across my face.

On our leaf contains Joshua 21:43-45:

So the LORD gave Israel all the land he had sworn to give their forefathers, and they took possession of it and settled there. The LORD gave them rest on every side, just as he had sworn to their forefathers. Not one of their enemies withstood them; the LORD handed all their enemies over to them. Not one of all the LORD's good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled.

I especially love verse 45: Not one of the Lord's promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled.

What a beautiful promise from our Lord. He is trustworthy.

Merry Christmas to us!

Keeping accountable on a Friday

For January 5

Proverbs 5
1 My son, pay attention to mywisdom, listen well to my words of insight, 2 that you may maintain discretion and your lips may preserve knowledge. 3 For the lips of an adulteress drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil; 4 but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double-edged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to the grave. 6 She gives no thought to the way of life; her paths are crooked, but she knows it not. 7 Now then, my sons, listen to me; do not turn aside from what I say. 8 Keep to a path far from her, do not go near the door of her house, 9 lest you give your best strength to others and your years to one who is cruel, 10 lest strangers feast on your wealth and your toil enrich another man's house. 11 At the end of your life you will groan, when your flesh and body are spent. 12 You will say, How I hated discipline! How my heart spurned correction! 13 I would not obey my teachers or listen to my instructors. 14 I have come to the brink of utter ruin in the midst of the whole assembly. 15 Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well. 16 Should your springs overflow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares? 17 Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers. 18 May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. 19 A loving doe, a graceful deer- may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love. 20 Why be captivated, my son, by an adulteress? Why embrace the bosom of another man's wife? 21 For a man's ways are in full view of the LORD, and he examines all his paths. 22 The evil deeds of a wicked man ensnare him; the cords of his sin hold him fast. 23 He will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.

Westminster Shorter Catechism: (from the CRTA)
Question 1
Q. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.[2]

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Keeping accountable

For today:

Proverbs 4: (from

1 Listen, my sons, to a father'sinstruction; pay attention and gain understanding. 2 I give you sound learning, so do not forsake my teaching. 3 When I was a boy in my father's house, still tender, and an only child of my mother, 4 he taught me and said, Lay hold of my words with all your heart; keep my commands and you will live. 5 Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or swerve from them. 6 Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. 7 Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. 8 Esteem her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honour you. 9 She will set a garland of grace on your head and present you with a crown of splendour. 10 Listen, my son, accept what I say, and the years of your life will be many. 11 I guide you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths. 12 When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble. 13 Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life. 14 Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evil men. 15 Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn from it and go on your way. 16 For they cannot sleep till they do evil; they are robbed of slumber till they make someone fall. 17 They eat the bread of wickedness and drink the wine of violence. 18 The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. 19 But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble. 20 My son, pay attention to what I say; listen closely to my words. 21 Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; 22 for they are life to those who find them and health to a man's whole body. 23 Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. 24 Put away perversity from your mouth; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. 25 Let your eyes look straight ahead, fix your gaze directly before you. 26 Make level paths for your feet and take only ways that are firm. 27 Do not swerve to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.

Westminster Shorter Catechism: (from the CRTA)
Question 1

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.[2]

[1] Psalm 86. Bow down thine ear, O LORD, hear me: for I am poor and needy. Preserve my soul; for I am holy: O thou my God, save thy servant that trusteth in thee. Be merciful unto me, O Lord: for I cry unto thee daily. Rejoice the soul of thy servant: for unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee. Give ear, O LORD, unto my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications. In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me. Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord; neither are there any works like unto thy works. All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name. For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone. Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name. I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore. For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell. O God, the proud are risen against me, and the assemblies of violent men have sought after my soul; and have not set thee before them. But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth. O turn unto me, and have mercy upon me; give thy strength unto thy servant, and save the son of thine handmaid. Show me a token for good; that they which hate me may see it, and be ashamed: because thou, LORD, hast holpen me, and comforted me. Isaiah 60:21. Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified. Romans 11:36. For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen. 1 Corinthians 6:20, 31. For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.... Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Revelation 4:11. Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

[2] Psalm 16:5-11. The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot. The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage. I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope. For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou wilt show me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. Psalm 144:15. Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the LORD. Isaiah 12:2. Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Luke 2:10. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. Philippians 4:4. Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Revelation 21:3-4. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Insto Diet Success

I hadn't weighed myself since I moved houses...several weeks ago. I knew it had gone up - we ate out a lot while moving, and then came Christmas...and the fudge and the cookies and the pie. The mirror told me I had gained weight - there was some scary stuff going on there. Really. I didn't want to weigh myself again until a bit after Christmas and I could start eating healthfully again. The crazy eating ends the night of my birthday. My 2007 goal is to lose 13 pounds. Several of which, I think are gifts from December, but definitely not all of it. About 10 of it is the last 10 from from my long weightloss journey. I lost 25 pounds several years ago, still needed to lose 5-10 more, then gained a few back. Anyway...

I've been eating much better this week, and jumping on my little trampoline. I still thought the mirror was a bit of a fright, although, I still see myself as 20 pounds heavier...from many years ago. My eyes aren't trustworthy in that respect.

I signed up yesterday at SparkPeople, a free online service that creates meal plans, workout plans, and weight trackers, etc. for you for FREE. I haven't used it before, so I can't tell you if it's good or not, but since it's free, I thought I'd give it a try. (Ok...just using the site now - their food thing isn't going to work for me, but it does look like a good place to put in daily goals and track progress.) I needed to enter my beginning weight. This morning I found the box that had the scale in it and hopped on. I was 3-4 pounds lighter than I expected!!! Yahoo!

That means that I'm already 3 pounds down for my 2007 goal! Only 10 to go. =) This is the fastest weight-loss ever!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Eat a snickers bar!

Function over fashion ladies. Now, I want to lose...13 pounds, like so many of us, BUT comfort and tastebuds shall win every time. Seriously - eat a snickers bar or something! Or at least a carrot!

Maybe I'm a horrible person, but I find this to be really funny...rather disturbing, but really funny.

From Diet-Blog: Dieting Girls Cause Subway Delays
The number 3 cause of train delays (between October 2005 and October 2006) in New York is a "sick customer". It turns out that most "sick customers" are girls who are on starvation diets and end up fainting on the train. "You have women trying to get their bodies tight for the summer and they won't eat," said Asim Nelson, a Transit emergency medical technician based in Grand Central Station. (src)An average of 395 delays per month are caused by sick customers. This, of course, includes any kind of event resulting from sickness (such as flu). However, anecdotal evidence from the MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority) suggests that fainting girls are the most common occurrence.

2007 - New Year Prayers

Laurel Wreath is asking about our new years meditations - our prayers, with an encouragement to dream big and lay it all out on the table before God.

I typically don't really make new years resolutions that are set in stone. I do think it should be more of our prayers for the year. Who am I to make resolutions for what my year shall entail? But like Laurel, I'm also hesitant to declare in prayer what I'd like to see happen this year. Of course, in the end, I want God's will more than anything, and if I never verbalize what I wanted to begin with, then I can't really have it taken away from me if it isn't His plan. I recognize that that seems a bit silly and childish now (since God knows my heart anyway), so I guess I will go ahead and memorialize my prayers for 2007.

I want to continue in BSF leadership, but with better preparation. If this is a task God has called me to, then I should do it to the fullest, with a joyful and grateful heart.

I want to mediate on one chapter in proverbs every day, repeating them every month. I'm sadly unfamiliar with most of the proverbs and would like to get them dug deep into my heart.

Similar to Keziah, I want to learn one question from the Westminster Shorter Catechism each week.

I want to find the best way to bless the Lord with the home He has blessed us with. We are going to start hosting our church small group here, but feel like maybe we should also get involved in Young Life, or our church's youth group. Or something else...I don't know. I want this to be a place of refuge, a haven where God is glorified, and all are welcome. (and one that serves good chocolate chip cookies!)

Scary to write it down, in case it doesn't happen, but I really want to get pregnant this year with our first child.

I want my husband to be offered a new job, that pays well, is intellectually exciting for him, where he will be respected, and at a company where he can have a great future.

I want hubs and I to be more active together.

I'll go ahead and put it in this category, since it affects my family very much, I want to lose 13 pounds. Almost forgot to put that one down! Really, I just want to be more comfortable in my skin. I realize that this sort of conflicts with the first family goal... God will just have to figure that one out. I just want to be more appropriately sized. =)

I want to find ways to regularly contact he friends God has blessed me with and learn to develop each of these friendships further, knowing that each woman is unique.

I want to learn to provide a better home for my family, being aware of what needs to be done, and doing it. No delay, no excuses. I want to provide order to the chaos. I do not want my job of providing healthy food and an orderly house to be a burden, but a privilege.

I want to be able to paint the exterior of our house this spring and remove the tree in the front.

I want our little house to sell quickly later this month for a good price.

(Edit: I keep forgetting things) - I want to learn to play the piano, even just a little bit of chords.


So there they are. Laid out before the blogging world, and before the Lord. What I want for 2007... IF they are what God wants too.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Starting off the new year differently

I'm going to just link back to this for my Works For Me Wednesday Post, because it is definitely working for me!

It is a privilege for a woman to manage her household. Since this often includes tasks that women enjoy (cooking a bit, making our homes a place of beauty, bringing a spirit of creativity into the home, teaching children, etc.), I think we tend to think it should be easy, and are shocked when we're overwhelmed doing something we want to be doing.
A little while ago, I decided to start making a schedule for my day. I would tend to wake up in the morning and forget what I really should be doing and when, and get a very slow start. I would be reactionary all day long and just felt frustrated all day - and some important tasks would be neglected. I need something that tells me what I am to do. I hope someday I will be less list-dependent, but for now, I need something that tells me to vacuum. Really, the thought won't just pop into my head, and if it faintly does, it won't be strong enough to motivate action. But, if it's written on a piece of paper, no question.

I've recently read similar thoughts on other blogs. Moms who feel too reactionary in their day. I'm guessing this isn't JUST me or doesn't JUST go away.

I really wanted an official daytimer calendar to make my list in, but the stores no longer carried 2006 ones. My habit fell away. With the new year, comes a new set of office supplies in the stores. I got myself a daily/monthly calendar where I can write out my schedule the night before. As I did this last night, I was so glad I did. I have a lot of errands I want to get done this afternoon, and had I not written it out, I surely would have forgotten some, or just gotten too late of a start and had a frustrating dinnertime.

For today, I have a lot to do. I slept in too late this morning and am already behind schedule. However, today I know what my schedule is, and I know that I'm behind schedule, which is a great improvement from last year. Happy 2007!