Good morning! I was awakened this morning by Jacob knocking at my door at 6:21 in the morning because I had promised to write him a check for seventy dollars for the prom. As soon as I stood up, the all too familiar chills and flu headache appeared. I wrote the check and tortured myself by stumbling back to bed even though I knew I couldn’t sleep anymore…I had to wake up Seth and Caleb.
So here it is several hours later. The smell of roasting chicken is in the air, as I am getting a head start on dinner later which will be Chicken Divan. Little Sarah is pattering about upstairs getting dressed.
I was sick an entire week and indeed, I am not yet quite well.
However, God is to be praised and glorified because He delights in caring for His precious children and I felt his love so much over the last week. Rich had a business trip from Tuesday to Thursday and I was so sick I had to send out a distress call over Facebook. My friends came through for me in such generous ways! By eight that morning four of the children were taken away……Caleb and Seth to my friend Diana’s house, and Grace and Sarah to my friend Heather’s. And each of these ladies had four children of their own at home, too, not to mention one year old baby boys. Heather took the girls to the Science center and gave me a candle, card, and jelly beans (which I gave to Jacob to take with him to his track meet). Diana had the boys spend the night and when she brought them back she also gave us dinner. Which reminds me, I really need her bread recipe.
My friend Barb came over with essential oils and took the boys to their orthodontist appointment. She bought me a box of tissues.
I carry the baggie of oils around with me, they are so very therapeutic! My sense of smell is returning!
Last Monday for whatever reason I very dumbly decided to go for a walk with the children. My only excuse is that I had taken three ibuprofen and felt that I was getting better (oh how I laugh now) …. anyway, the reason I went was because Grace came to me and said, “Mom, I thought I heard ducks but it was really frogs. They’re back.” Namely, Spring Fever.
The happy frogs were down by the rushing stream in a quieter tributary, laying eggs. I’m not sure what type of frog they were, they were NOT the bullfrogs. Once we were that far, we decided to keep on going and walk up the dam trail.
David was jumping on the trampoline being unsociable and Ethan was at practice, so it was Jacob, Emily, Grace, Caleb, Seth, and Sarah.
Jacob shot a tree with an air-soft gun (I know, this was bad of him) and we all ran over to taste the sap. He looked around for a Maple tree but could not find one.
It was a little cold for Sarah so Jacob and Emily left with her and Seth. They also had bare feet and the grass was hurting them. Grace, Caleb, and I continued to the old beaver pond in the woods to search out some more frog activity.
We saw a new bird species as we entered the woods by a tiny stream. We didn’t notice it at all until we were almost upon it, it was so well camouflaged. The pictures I took are truly pitiable. If you lean in very close to the computer screen you can see it…a small bird about the size of a bantam hen, with an upturned tail, black eyes, and long beak.
You may have to take my word for it. It flew away reluctantly in three brief flights; the third one being the last attempt we made to “get a little closer”. I looked it up later on and decided it was perhaps a Water Rail.
We sat down by the beaver pond to watch the frogs. Grace was right next to me. She had bare feet and said, “What in the world is under my toes.” It turned out to be a tiny tree frog. Then, she climbed a tree and just as she settled in the branches she saw a red spider. Nature loves Grace.
Dear Caleb. He proudly wears his waterproof boots.
Eastern Skunk Cabbage blooms. It really does smell like skunk…the kids call it stink weed.
bright green moss on a boulder in the woods.
Skunk cabbage growing through a leaf.
Walking with boys ALWAYS involves a few battles with sticks.
Heading home. Caleb was our silent third party while Grace and I chatted and laughed all the while…….
When I got home I decided to open the last bottle of blackberry/sage Kombucha. It opened like a shot and Kombucha pulp sprayed all over the ceiling. I had to walk around on the island with clorox wipes to clean it off. If the cork wasn’t held on to the bottle by metal hardware I would be typing this blog post with only one eye.
I never even drank it. I could not taste it and couldn’t be sure that it wasn’t spoiled. I’m sure it wasn’t, but after cleaning up all the pulp I lost my appetite for it. It sure got fizzy, right?
After Monday I didn’t pick up my camera again for four days (this is impressive for me). I did have my phone so I took a few pictures with it:
I was in the cupboard trying to find something to snack on when Grace saw the word flu. We had to laugh at the irony.
Jacob and David, I’m so proud of these sons of mine.
Caleb after a few days of neglecting to gather the eggs.
The glorious sky on Friday which prompted me to touch the camera again. The day was dark and gloomy until the very end when the sun came out briefly. I love the dark sky and the sunshine trees.
Snickers asleep on the porch.
Seth playing football by himself.
On Sunday I thought I saw the football down by the pond but then realized it was a Muskrat of all things. It sat at the edge for a while, I think it was eating, sometimes the force of it’s digging made its long tail come out of the water.
Lastly, I took this picture of Rich reading to our youngest two last night before bed.
I have two book recommendations for you, if you are interested. The first is titled A Room with View, written in 1908 by Edward Morgan Forster. It’s a free download on the Kindle. After you read it you can watch the lovely movie adaptation.
The second book is one that I am currently reading. It was written by a Romanian Lutheran pastor who was imprisoned for 14 years of his life in different prisons because of his Christian belief. It’s titled In God’s Underground and was written by Richard Wurmbrand and is a one dollar book on Kindle. Here is a quote:
“The prison years did not seem too long for me, for I discovered, alone in my cell, that beyond belief and love there is a delight in God: a deep and extraordinary ecstasy of happiness that is like nothing in this world. And when I came out of jail I was like someone who comes down from a mountaintop where he has seen for miles around the peace and beauty of the countryside, and now returns to the plain.”
That’s not to say that he did not experience satanic temptations, torture, and deathly illness, because he did. But in the midst of it all he experienced over and over again God’s amazing sustenance. What a beautiful testimony this book is and I think EVERY Christian should read it to get yet another idea of how awesome God is, and what is available to us as believers.
Here is just one more quote and then I will close this post for the day.
“Words alone have never been able to say what man feels in the nearness of divinity. Sometimes I was so filled with joy that I felt I would burst if I did not give it expression. I remembered the words of Jesus, ‘Blessed are you when men come to hate you, when they exclude you from their company and reproach you and cast out your name as evil on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy!’ I told myself, ‘I’ve carried out only half this command. I’ve rejoiced, but that is not enough. Jesus clearly says that we must also leap.’
“When next the guard peered through the spy-hole, he saw me springing about my cell.”
Dance for Jesus today, my friends! Rejoice and leap for joy!
i am praying for you!! praying that you are back to your normal, healthy self, very soon! loved your blog today!
Hope you get well soon 🙂
I am so sorry that you have been so sick, but I loved your blog today. I paused yesterday to look at the green trees against a dark sky, and then rushed home to beat the raindrops.
I’m glad you are on the mend, Shanda!! I got the flu too, over Easter break, and…it sure is inconvenient!!! 🙂 It takes so long to get over it, while life just keeps going on and the laundry piles up. I loved the quotes you posted from the book you are reading. Makes the heart leap and warm in response.
So sorry that you’ve been so sick. What a wonderful delight your blog post was though with all the nature wanderings and the beautiful photographs. I do hope you are feeling 100% soon. It sounds like you really need to have someone care for you. The mother needs some mothering! I’m glad that others were able to take some of the children to lighten the load. It won’t hurt the family to be having simple meals like eggs on toast and using frozen vegetables instead of chopping them up. Take the opportunity to simplify tasks for a while until you are feeling stronger. Your health is important too and the family won’t suffer. xx
Loved your post! Hope you feel great soon! 🙂
I’ve had the “God’s Underground” book downloaded for a while now, but have never read it. Now I want to finally pick it up and read it. Thanks for posting about it.
I’m so glad you are feeling better. That’s a long time to be that sick. Enjoyed seeing pics of Spring emerging at your place. I hope that this week continues to get better and better for you.