its not fair

I’m avoiding the news, but I am aware of current events; all the issues spread across the land like a heavy cloud. I think about the issues because I care, I wish I could figure things out neatly and satisfyingly. Its frustrating.

I’m reading a memoir written by Lorene Cary, “a bright, ambitious black teenager from Philadelphia, who in 1972 was transplanted into the formerly all-white, all-male environs of the elite Saint Paul’s School in New Hampshire, where she became a scholarship student in a ‘boot camp’ for future American leaders. Like any good student, she was determined to succeed. But Cary was also determined to succeed without selling out. This wonderfully frank and perceptive memoir describes the perils and ambiguities of that double role, in which failing calculus and winning a student election could both be interpreted as betrayals of ones own skin.” ~quote from book description on the back cover

There are some hyper-sensitive souls among us who are in near-continual grief over the unfairness of life; sickness, death, discrimination, cruelty, abuse, neglect, handicaps, poverty, and so on. It all seems so overwhelming and heartbreaking that the more we think about it, the worse our own inner being becomes.

We need to lean on you more stoic, logical ones. We need to be nurtured. You help us with your strength and understanding; THANK YOU.

Oftentimes, though, we feel alone. We know who we are; deep feelers in a world of hurt. We can’t imagine adding our own hurts to the pile, so we suffer alone. We use our minds and our quiet books, our ears, and our hearts to try with all our might to make sense of it all……….

Jesus was called a man of sorrows.

“He was despised and rejected, a man of sorrows, acquainted with the deepest grief.” Isaiah 53:3

When he hung on the cross, He cried out to the Father, “WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?” (Matthew 27:46)

He was born, and lived his years in this world, in grief (but He didn’t wallow in it, he had things to do.)

“I carry out the will of the One who sent me, not my own will.” John 5:30

The other day my son confessed, “But I don’t like to cry, it feels weak.”

I turned around to look into his dear face and reminded him that the shortest verse in the Bible was “Jesus wept”…….It takes great strength to cry.

The Bible also says, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” (Matthew 5:4)

Maybe the sensitive among us shouldn’t try so hard to be “happy” and “upbeat”.

Maybe their anguish, like all anguish, is the key to something different, a sweet pathway leading to the overwhelming comfort of a loving Heavenly Father, who, like a mother, takes the time to scoop up a crying child and spend all the time her baby needs her, holding and rocking and singing over her, with soft motherly kisses in her hair……..soothing and gentle.

“It hurts, it hurts!” I know, dear one, come near to me and let me love you.

“It’s not fair, it’s not fair! I want to fix it and I can’t!” Yes, sweet love, now you can let go and wait for Me to fix it for you. I love you, trust me my darling child.

and when it comes to that, we can continue.

In my book, when Lorene accepts the fact that despite all the hours and hard work, calculus still wasn’t making sense to her, she would fail the class, and she went to a friend in tears. It wasn’t fair, she felt that the teacher wasn’t treating her fairly because she was a female student in a time when the college was just starting to try co-education, she felt that he favored his male students, she was tired and frustrated. Her friend listened to her and said, “It’s hard to know when it’s really happening or when it’s in our heads. There’s nothing we can do about that right now-the fact of it or the way we feel-except to do what we’re doing and be the best we can.”

This struck me as wonderful, because when all is said and prayed and felt, the next thing is to DO.

I’m a thinker and a feeler, I often forget the health-giving gift of WORK.

write the blog
get some exercise
clean like I mean it
care for the needs of my family

I wrote down a list of things that truly take me out of my head:

MUSIC; singing, playing piano
COOKING and BAKING (this could be an all day affair if I let it! why not? it’s fun to chose recipes and make delicious dishes)
NATURE; especially bugs (they are everywhere and easy to photograph)
BOOKS; reading, bookstores, the library
COUNTED CROSS STITCH (I passed a little stitchery shop last week and made myself turn around to visit it, I walked it, it was like an oasis of beautiful colorful yarns. I picked out a small kit and purchased a tiny pair of scissors from a sweet older lady in a blue dress).
PHOTOGRAPHY; (I’m enjoying a Polaroid camera!)

The kitten we adopted is very very sick. We watched her weaken and took her to the vet on Saturday for medicine and special food. The very next day, she was huddled in the corner in a little bed we made for her. I had already given her medicine and water through a dropper and was discussing her impending death in the kitchen to my husband. Our sensitive boy, the one who doesn’t want to cry, overheard us and silently went into the closet and wouldn’t come out for over an hour. When he finally came out, he was sobbing, “I just don’t want her to die alone! I don’t want her to be in that closet and die by herself!” We comforted him and encouraged him, we stepped up our game with trying to nurse the poor thing back to health and keeping her company. She made it through the day, and even walked over to her new friend, who was on the couch, and jumped up on to his lap.

We still don’t know if she will make it, but we are learning what everyone in the world is learning; life hurts. it’s unfair. we want to change things and sometimes we can’t. Jesus understands. and those who love us will comfort us.

and then we stand up, and get to work.

heart & mind

Rich is away today for a meeting by the shore of Connecticut. Jacob and Ethan are at work, Grace is home with me and cheerful, David, Caleb, Seth, and Sarah will be home from school soon.

I did a lot of crying yesterday but look! I’m still here. I’ve felt like crying a few times today (even now) but so far…..have been able to restrain myself. I feel quiet and calm and deep down sad. This is an improvement over yesterday’s “my heart hurts so bad make it stop sobbing”.

There is a chicken bubbling in broth on the stove with celery, onion, and seasonings. When it’s done I will let it cool, take the meat off, and add it back to the broth with noodles for dinner. Or maybe I’ll make biscuits. This is an improvement over yesterday’s dinner of “nothing”.

Seth has a band concert tonight. Have I told you he plays the trumpet? He’s 10? A new player? Not very good? And it’s loud?

I went for one walk today so far and did some reading. Mainly I’ve been parked here in my favorite spot on the couch most of the day with my camera nearby to snap photos of birds visiting the porch feeders.

baltimore oriole, hopping off the railing to the grape jelly below

They were fussing at each other (oriole and female rose-breasted grosbeak)

“and what is wrong with YOU”, I asked the cardinal

I saw six lady-slippers by the trail.

ground-ivy by the side of the road (“It is used as a salad green in many countries.”)

I think this is called “Celandine” and I read that it is poisonous to chickens. It’s growing and blooming on the side of the road.

In all their affliction He was afflicted. And the Angel of His Presence saved them; In His love and in His pity He redeemed them; And He bore them and carried them all the days of of old. Isaiah 63:9

My mom wrote this verse in my journal for me when we visited last.

tiny soft pinecone

“He started carefully down the trail, knowing that at any moment something unexpected might happen……knowing that nothing was exactly what it seemed to be.” Anpao (newbery book) page 183

back at home with Grace, Bible, journal, markers

Then, my friend Bridgette sent me a link to an article about Charles Spurgeon and I read it with interest and copied down some quotes.

After this I continued reading Beartown and rested for a while.

Caleb just got home from school, Grace is reading and I’m going to go for my second walk and try to get the rest of my steps done (10,000 per day).

Thank you for stopping by, friends, you are loved.

“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7

misery and woe

ummmmmm…….. so thank you to those who have figured out and made the attempt to continue reading this humble blog of my life and thoughts.

I have been experiencing intense misery and woe but as I sit here I am filled with the desire to express it all with frankness and humor. If you can’t laugh about your misery and woe then it has its evil hooks in you and that’s just not a nice feeling ask me how I know this.

Gosh, life is hard sometimes!!!!! Isn’t it?

But then again, Jesus loves me this I know, and despite the misery and woe I find myself uplifted and laughing even after I stubbornly fold my arms in front of my chest, stick out my lower lip, and think, “I refuse and I’m simply NOT going to enjoy this day today.”

Saturday was one of those days! I simply failed to believe I would even smile. I had cried so much the afternoon and evening and night before that my eyes were practically swollen shut. I was not feeling pretty, or good, or worthwhile, or hopeful, or confident, or anything along those lines.

THE CHILDREN SAVED THE DAY. Why? Because Sethers had a baseball game. Therefore I had to get myself dressed and get my butt out of the house. Because baseball games are OUTSIDE, therefore the sun was shining upon me. (Try to be filled with misery and woe while sitting in sunshine, it’s hard to keep up.) ALSO, ALL MY CHILDREN (except David) went to the game to cheer on their little brother. (This sent not a little joy through the cracks of my heart.) Also, Seth hit a homerun!!!!! To be honest, it would have only been a triple but the ball was overthrown to third and he was able to get to home on that error. You should have seen his proud face when he came over about 10 minutes later. He silently approached with the look, “I’m coming because I just know my mom is going to want to tell me how awesome I am.” And he was right, I did. His Dad and I sat in our chairs, sat in the grass, sat on the bleachers (we get restless at these games) surrounded by our children plus our Brittnee and our Michael and had (dare I say) fun.

Grace kept bonding with tiny caterpillars.
Sarah played with new-found temporary friends (it’s what you do at your brother’s games)
RIch and Michael wrestled in the grass.
Jacob took his latest Steven King book and didn’t read it and then forgot it (but Sarah grabbed it for him)
Ethan, Caleb, and Jacob played catch.
We all got our first sunburns of the season to varying degrees. Brittnee’s knees especially.
The game seemed to drag on forever……but…..
Seth’s team won!

And then we all went out for pizza.

Here I am, in obvious misery and woe (and waiting for my coffee, also starving because I only had a yogurt for breakfast at 5:15am and it was 2 and I hadn’t had lunch.) Surrounded by the people I love.

Here I am wondering why my photo is being taken in such a state. And Ethan being Ethan, how I love him.
As I leaned across the table at her, I said, “I think what you’re asking me is “Can you play when you get home? “Yes” “Okay, then, you may”. Problem solved.
And then I laughed, what else could I do?
I forgot David wasn’t with us and I asked Michael to take a family photo of us outside the pizza place.
Being himself, he had to take one with himself in it.
….and then I said, “Brittnee, too!” I was so happy to get a whole entire family photo and we walked to the car while I looked at the photos and wondered why there were only six children surrounding us and then I realized, “Oh yeah, Dave is at a track meet!!” and my woe came back. Michael said “Settle down, it’s okay!” And I guess it was, but I miss David in these photos. By the way, he got another PR in hurdles.
I’m going to blog more about this, but here I am in the church downtown after a community concert to celebrate our towns 300th anniversary!!! Can you find me? I look rather pretty. (toward the left).
Rich took us girls out for ice cream afterwards and Sarah looked so picturesque that I asked him to take this photo. She’s wearing her sister’s boots and I think, “Pippi Longstocking” whenever I see her in them. (She wore them to school today)

Thankful for:
a healthy sense of humor even as I struggle
that toad I saw yesterday evening hopping purposefully toward my flower garden
the bookbag I’m carrying around everywhere I go that says “baby got books” on it and it’s indeed got books in it along with fine tip markers, a journal, Bible, and magazines. Gives me life.
my family and the things they do and say
rocking chairs on the porch
matcha tea lattes
my cats
and you, my friends

You are loved. Thank you for being here. Please pray for me as I will also pray for you today. Be encouraged, we have each other!!! and lots of love. We can do this! and the rewards of eternal life are unspeakable. Heaven’s not now……but it’s coming.

“How amazing are the deeds of the Lord! All who delight in Him should ponder them.” Ps. 111:2

“If the Son sets you free, you are truly free.” John 8:36

“For the despondant, every day brings trouble; for the happy heart, life is a continual feast.” Proverbs 15:15

when I taste your goodness, I shall not want

“Though the fig tree may not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines;
though the labor of the olive may fail,
and the fields yield no food;
though the flock be cut off from the fold,
and there be no herd in the stalls–
yet I will rejoice in my Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation.”
Habakkuk 3:17-18

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:4-6

“Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you.  I do not give it as the world does.  Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid.”  John 14:27

“But now, this is what the Lord says…Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.”  Isaiah 43:1

“….Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged; for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”  Joshua 1:9

“Tell everyone who is discouraged, Be strong and don’t be afraid!  God is coming to your rescue.”  Isaiah 35:4

“He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, ‘Quiet!  Be still!’ Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.”  Mark 4:39  (He does this to the storms in our souls, too)

Unless the Lord has judged our fears to be a great evil, He would not so often have forbidden them, or have prepared such a heavenly quietus for them.  Charles Spurgeon

“Permit me to say there is nothing in the Bible to make any man fear who puts his trust in Jesus.  Nothing in the Bible did I say?  There is nothing in heaven, nothing on earth, nothing in hell, that need make you fear who trust in Jesus.”  Spurgeon

“The Lord may be very close to thee, dear child, when thou canst not see Him, perhaps closer than ever he was when thou couldst see Him.  The presence of God is not to be measured by the realization of it.”  Spurgeon

“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world.  On the contrary, the weapons we fight with have divine power to demolish strongholds.  We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”  2 Corinthians 10:4-5


You see, dear friends, I have a daily struggle with anxiety and have very unwisely held on to fears and allowed them to grow.  I have allowed exhaustion to grow, too, until life itself seemed too much to bear.  And indeed, it was too much to bear.  How very thankful I am for Mother, who called me during her work day to simply listen to me cry and cry and talk it all out, and the wisdom she spoke to me.   “You’re exhausted.  You need to rest.  Don’t do anything during your free times but rest.  And then when quiet time is over, get up and bake something for your family.”

I am ashamed of my weakness when I think of many others in the past and present that have a life much more difficult than mine.  But the truth is, God is almost certainly going to gently allow EACH ONE OF US to sink to our lowest, our breaking point, to show us the comfort and delights to be found in Himself.  No matter what your life situation, there will be times of difficulty, and if you are a believer and a lover of Jesus, it is during those times when you will find yourself on your knees and know that your faith is not in vain.  It is a true faith, a simple childlike faith, in a God so big and loving that it truly does bring a peace that passes all understanding.

I pray my most desperate prayers in the bathroom.  I lock the door and turn on the ventilation fan so no one can hear me, and I kneel down by the bathtub and pray.  I tell Jesus exactly what is making me fearful or anxious.  I tell Him that I cannot control the anxiety and that I need Him to take over and do the work inside of me.  I tell Him of the verses I know that command me not to worry and that I trust Him.  How grateful I am when I pray it all out and find my spirit restored once again.  It truly does work, and not because of anything I have done, but because of Christ and His provision.

It’s been AMAZING.


In between the prayer times, life has been relatively peaceful again…..true, the children are all getting sick over and over….but, ONLY BECAUSE I’m learning to let go and get through it the best I can without freaking out inside!!!  Life is not an emergency.

I’m trying to be more like my cat.






Grace and Jenna taking tickets at the play we went to a few weeks ago.





Jacob and David, I think they were playing smashy road….Dave is using my phone.





“This home is a shelter for those we hold dear, wishing peace to all who enter here.”








David followed a youtube instructional video last night and made gummy candy out of jello.


Here it is before he cut it.


Sarah’s library book which was not intended for the highly observant child (the kittens were slightly different throughout the book but supposed to be the same three and she kept asking me who was who.)



I colored her hair slightly with hair chalk, as per her request.  There is a small green streak on the left and a small purple streak on the right.


Seth showed me his tricks while waiting for the bus.  He was kicking the football and then trying to catch it with one hand.   Hilarious


Thank you for the beautiful plants, Amy!!!!


If you’re anxious about anything today, find a quiet time to pray and let your burdens go to His capable hands.  Jesus is more than conqueror of all our fears and no one understands what men and women go through like He does.  We all have such unique and challenging lives, but in Him we can live them peacefully and calmly, with thanksgiving.  He will take those worries and destroy them!

And gosh darn it, slow down and get your rest.

Eat properly, too.

Drink water.

Get some sunshine.

Onward and upward.

You are loved.

go easy


David’s little kitty, whose name is Gentleman Gray, isn’t allowed to go outside very often.

But when he does, he returns as soon as possible with an old dead mouse.


The mouse was caught by one of Gentleman Gray’s housemates….he himself hasn’t caught any of them, he doesn’t have the opportunity, so he just enjoys playing with them.

Typically, I take the mouse by the ice cold tip of it’s tail and fling it right back outside into the bushes as far as I can fling.  But the other day I let him have it for a few minutes because his antics were making me laugh.


He has several very nice fabric mice filled with catnip, but there’s just nothing like sinking your teeth into a real live dead one.


The poor thing had such adorable ears.

If the children or I find one of our cats in the act of killing a mouse we ALWAYS save the mouse’s life.

My husband on the other hand…… thrilled with every dead mouse he sees.


There have been a few times when I threw a dead mouse outside (without him seeing me do it) only to have him bring it right back in!  What an amazing sense of smell cats must have.


Sarah was so so sick last night.  She must have thrown up seven times in the matter of just a few hours.  She was distraught, pale, crying…it was terrible.  What a mercy that her body finally settled down and she was able to eat some animal crackers and keep them down at around 9:30-10.  But then Caleb got sick, and then David.  Pepto- Bismol was the key to helping their tummies.  They all made it through the night quietly so we had some sleep.  Today they have been on the couches all day long but able to eat more and more, starting with crackers in the morning and ending at 5:00pm with all three eating bowls of cooked broccoli!  If you can crave broccoli at a time like this I would say things aren’t so bad.

God has surprised me several times today with unexpected blessings.  One was a phone call from the kid’s doctor, wanting to apologize to me for being very distracted at the last appointment I went to, he even mentioned CHRISTIANITY, LOVE, CHRIST, and the HOLY SPIRIT in the conversation (!!) and other blessing was having Michael come to visit Jacob just in time to go pick up Ethan from school after practice.

Yet another time was much earlier in the day, when I went to drop off lunch money at the school.  The office lady asked how I was and as I spoke to her she could tell I was stressed out.  As I left she encouraged me by simply saying, “go easy.”  Those two little words became my mantra of the day.  Go easy on myself, go easy on my day, go easy with my family, go easy on the housework, etc……..


I visited my hens.  I gave them fresh water and food.

And then some of them followed me.  I was about to take a very easy and short walk, close to home.

I saw a chipmunk on a rock in the stream.  It froze when it saw me and then as quick as lightening, vanished under some old sticks and leaves.

I wasn’t going anywhere in particular….so I wandered down to Ethan’s fort that he made this summer.


It’s an interesting feeling to be all alone, looking at your son’s hard work.  Imagining him building it, seeing his thoughts and ideas on how to make it work.  I stood under the roof.  I saw the clippers and a garden tool.


I admired the way he put together the low walls.

And when I turned around, I saw that one of my hens had crossed the stream to follow me to the fort!  It was an unexpected laugh.


We talked for a few minutes and then she went back home.  It was a good thing because I really don’t want a lonely lost hen in the forest.




I would love to know what this shrub or sapling is.  The stem is green but there is brown stiff paper-like bark sticking out around it.  It’s so pretty and orderly.


The best part of my walk was discovering witch hazel in bloom.



This is the very same plant that witch hazel astringent is made from, which has many uses and has been around for a very long time.


It comes into flower just as everything else around us is dying from frosts.

Such a cheerful yellow.


In the upper left you can see the brown seed pods.  The seeds within them open up on a sunny day and shoot out for a great distance.  Fun!


I broke a branch off one of the bushes to carry it back to the house so I could admire it.  I’m hoping the seed pods open up and shoot.


I did all my walking and came back home with my pockets looking like this.  Guess what’s in them?

hard times

He is a gift from God.


“Peace.  It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work.  It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.” 

Still be calm in my heart?!?  “God, help me, perform it in me, I cannot do this on my own, with my own efforts, I need YOU.”




I’m overwhelmed and my mind is in a whirl.  Those dark, negative thoughts (from the pits) want to destroy me.   When those dark thoughts come, I find it is necessary to run to my Bible, write the words, read them, drink them into my soul like medicine.  I tell God the truth about myself (He knows all about me, anyway):  “Lord, I’m finding it all so difficult.”


Ouch.  It hurts sometimes. 


Caleb, age 6


I’ve wandered around here for days, feeling my own pulse, with the fear/stress sitting right in my chest, making me wonder if it’s my heart.  I ran across an article at the boy’s hair cuts on Saturday about the terrible effects of STRESS on a woman’s heart and that just kept me on a goin’………

The only thing I know for sure in these trials (for me, the darkest trials are mental), is that God has only GOOD planned for His precious children.  He is so amazing he even uses trials for good.  He LOVES so abundantly and has marvelous things in mind, always.

He forgives.

He is gentle.

He pours out His Spirit. 

Jesus intercedes and I can pray in His name.

He GOES before us into battle, He has made a way, He’s leading me along this journey.  He’s not just next to me, he’s BEFORE me.  He’s carrying me!

His grace is amazing and sweet.

I'm so proud of you!


Oh how my heart craves HIM, His teachings, His direction, His power.


Isaiah 40:11  He shall feed his flock like a shepherd:  he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.

~God's plans are for good~


On Sunday afternoon, I took Caleb to a quiet road nearby, to ride his bike.  It was just the two of us. 

It doesn’t come naturally at times, to put my self aside and pour my life into his (and his siblings), but by God’s grace it does happen now and then, as a gift, despite the exhaustion.  Not just for Caleb, but for myself. 

When we give freely of ourselves, we truly get good in return.  Joy.  Peace.  A good memory in the midst of a fog.

Yes, I’m personally experiencing some hard times, currently.  It’s okay.  I ask for prayer, if I happen to cross your mind, friends.  And if you have a struggle, I would like to do the same for you.  ((hugs))

I’m working on health.  I’m going to the doctor’s today, for some (hopefully) helpful tips and suggestions on how to pace myself during this stage of life, and hopefully become better at dealing with these emotions/hormones.  

Other helps:

Drink more water/eat properly
Pray more
read God’s Word
rest, and as I close my eyes, imagine God’s ministering angels in the room
DO the things God gave me the joy to do:  ex) photography, reading
Focus OUT, not in
music (playing, singing, listening)
maintain gentleness and love toward my family, be thankful
Let go, let God
This WILL pass, I hope, won’t it?  maybe? soon?  very soon?
briefly let out a sharp scream now and then (just kidding)


I cried out, “I am slipping!”  but your unfailing love, O Lord, supported me.  When doubts filled my mind, your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer.  Psalm 94:18, 19  (totally loving this verse!)



Thank you for stopping by here, friends.  You are loved. 


a small peek into my busy life. . . . .

Rich had to work late last night.
So at about 4:30  I cleaned up my kitchen,
while the kids watched a video about Japan,
and Caleb, my shadow, was perched on the counter next to the sink (where I was standing).
I decided to take them to McDonald’s for dinner.
There is one not too far away that has one of those indoor play-scapes.
So we went, it’s been a long time since we’ve gone to a play-scape,
And Jacob was thrilled that he could still play (12 yrs old is the limit).
He and Ethan, of course, turned it into a game of “spy”.
Caleb managed just fine, despite his big sister’s over-the-top “help”.
David, of course, made new friends left and right.
One little boy was missing a hand.
And I thanked God, that my kids all had their hands.
The little boy was great, no one noticed his disability.
When he left, my kids leaned into me and said,
“That was such a nice boy!”
They didn’t say one word about his hand.
Children can be so beautiful. . . . .

Anyway, they ate their fries and chicken.
  David was too busy to fill himself up so when we got home,
out came the crackers.
They all complained when I stopped their movie at 8pm. 
But, I had to, I was TIRED, and ready for bed myself!
the last thing they all heard before sleep,
was me yelling.
8:30 came and I was till trying to get them to settle down.
Caleb kept getting out of his crib,
and Jacob and E decided this would be the night they taught the dog to sleep with them.
It ended in a disaster–he peed on Ethan’s guitar case–
I was so mad, I yelled the whole time that I was scrub-scrub-scrubbing.
Caleb actually popped the side of his crib off,
and I got mad and yelled as I struggled to fix it.
(we’ll be putting him in a bed, soon)
I even yelled at David, who was just looking at me from under his covers. Like this
(He shook his head no)
“GO TO SLEEP!!!!!!!”

Those were (some of) the words my poor children had to hear right before sleep last night.

Of course once things settled down, I felt sad, and spent some time writing in my journal
and letting the Lord fix my bad attitude. 

Then I got in bed and read a book and fell asleep early.  I do have my limitations!

Today is a new day!

Caleb, still my shadow, is standing next to me as I type,
with his head in my lap,
and a choo-choo in his hand.
When I stop to think about what to write, I rub his back,
or stroke his soft cheek,
or touch his hair (which has a crusty spot from him dumping chocolate milk on his head yesterday).

Last night I had had ENOUGH.
Today I will try to pace myself better and by God’s grace, keep my cool.

My heart belongs to my family and my children, I love them so.

These are photos that I took of David and Caleb yesterday morning, after my battery had charged.




I didn’t even write about cleaning up a big bowl of dumped cat food (twice) and not finding the dust pan.
(NO ONE knows where it went). . . .
Or the entire Nestle chocolate milk mix that was dumped upside down on the table.
Or bursting into tears when I was trying to read to the kids and Jacob complained, “I already read this”
Or when the dog knocked me over backwards out in the woods when I called him out of a shot.
Or discovering the driveway was scattered with those. . .packing peanuts. . . .
etc, etc,

Yesterday I got totally irritated over the little problems of motherhood.

Today I hope to be more positive!




Here are some things that I said this week:


“Life is HARD” (said in the midst of a sob)

“I’m AFRAID of getting sick and dying.”

“I’m feeling MORBID and thinking too much about death.”

“I don’t feel like I have anything to look forward to.  When I was having babies I felt ALIVE, now I don’t.  I don’t feel lively anymore.”

“I feel like I’ve lost me.”


Okay.  I know I said a lot more but thankfully I forgot the rest.  I’m sure RICH (my dear husband) remembers, but I don’t.  I was at a low low point.  My mind can be so negative at times, I’m telling you, confessing those sinful fears out loud to my husband was a turning point for me. 

Anyway, this all happened in the beginning of the week.  Then I picked up the March issue of “Tabletalk” magazine and got a good dose of truth.  A few aha! moments:


“Everything we think, feel, and do is etched into the neuronal fabric of our brains.  Think about those things that are good, true, and beautiful, and your brain will demonstrate a certain chemical footprint; indulge SINFUL IMAGINATIONS and it will have another.”  (what does God tell us to do?  “Whatsoever things are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, if there be any virtue, any praise, think on THESE things”)

We may, as Christians, have periods of doubt when we cry, “LORD I BELIEVE, HELP THOU MY UNBELIEF”

“The cure for anxiety is found on our knees, it is the peace of God that calms our spirit and dissipates anxiety.”

“Take any spiritual problem–anger, fear, unbelief, guilt, or shame.  Allow it to persist without hearing the truth and comfort of the GOSPEL and responding to it.  The result, in susceptible people, can be depression.”  (I need to confess my sin of fear and unbelief )

“Suffering, on this side of the cross, has redemptive purposes.”

“This is the freeing truth you can learn through your depression:  you weren’t created to love and worship anything more than you love and worship God; and when you do, you’ll feel bad.  God has made you to feel pain when you’ve got other treasures that you’ve placed above Him.  He wants you to treasure HIM.”

“Rather than considering OURSELVES, our record, humiliation, and failure, WE ARE TO CONSIDER HIM (Christ).”  (ouch, very convicting)

“The depressed person needs to repeatedly hear this lovely statement, ‘Take heart, my son/daughter, your sins are forgiven.” 

“The depressed don’t simply need to feel better.  They need a Redeemer who says, ‘Take heart, my son, my daughter; what you really need has been supplied.  Life no longer need be about your goodness, success, righteousness, or failure.  I’ve given you something infinitely more valuable than good feelings:  your sins are forgiven.’  This forgiveness permanently cleanses not only outward conspicuous sin, but also HIDDEN unbelief, faithlessness, pride, self-sufficiency, and apathy.”


Anyway, it all boils down to the fact that my depression (and pretty much every depression I’ve had, except PPD, and I believe that was hormones)  results from all the obsessing I was doing about the “bad things” that “could happen” in my life, in the future.  At times, I think so much about negative things, that I create more and more fear and anxiety in my spirit.  I realized this week that I need to quickly confess those thoughts as SIN and get rid of it ASAP so that God can keep my thoughts pure and lovely.

I need to let go of my longing to CONTROL my own life. . . . I even wrote it on my hand, to remind me to LET GO and LET GOD.





with 2 edits (so far). . . .

I was inspired by cerwindoris this week to get my speedlight out again.  I’ve been scared of it.  You see, I am not the type of person who feels comfortable with electronics. . .(is a speedlight an electronic?). . .whenever I have a piece of new equipment like my camera or the speedlight, my hands start to shake and I have the manual out and I have to do everything just so, feeling all the while like I’m certainly NOT doing it right.  I get all worked up about it.  So the speedlight was used ONE time and then back in the box in went until today!

So thanks, Doris, for the little push that you didn’t even know you gave me!

Here are the pictures I took with it this morning:

I interrupted their Bible reading to take this one.  As you can see, our map has been covered up by my china cabinet.  I keep meaning to take it down. . .  There is still a Christmas wreath up behind Jacob, too.  I like it there.  Rich did the curtain rods for me as a surprise last year when I was away for a weekend (I think it’s time for another weekend getaway, btw)


And here is David with no shirt, and Caleb is next to him.  They are playing a veggietales computer game in my room.  You can see a mug from yesterday’s tea, a ponytail holder from me taking out my hair.  See the small calender?  The picture above it is a picture of me at about 4 years old, and I am holding a cat.  I love looking at little me. . .I’ve always liked kitties.  The quilt you see in the bottom right hand corner is something Rich’s Grandma made.  I use it to cover the printer.

(oh my –at this moment, rain is coming down HARD, dark clouds are blowing across the sky and I can hear blustery wind. . .)


Here is a picture of part of our bedroom:


I wanted to show Aunt Mary the wall hanging that I bought at her party a while ago.  We hung it up over my dresser.  It’s supposed to have a pillar candle in it, but instead I put these in:

DSC_6774  Cherries!


This picture is for roseteacup.  When I was feeling bad a few weeks ago, she encouraged me to do something creative.  I had some bulbs that I never got in the ground this fall, and they were beginning to sprout in the package.  I had Jacob go in the woods to get me some nice dirt (it was the week of our Jan. thaw) and planted some in containers.  Now, I get to watch them grow.  I wish I could tell you what these are, I think they are crocus.  I also planted mini-daffodils and tulips.


Last but not least, a picture of me and Grace.  I think her ripped out jeans are so so so so cute!


I’m pretty blah today.  I actually spent some time this morning in tears. . .I’m stressed out with my duties.  I cannot understand how women homeschool multiple children, along with being mommy to preschoolers.  I feel very very overwhelmed.  Lately I haven’t been able to enjoy making dinners, the past 2 days we’ve had pasta w/hamburger spaghetti sauce.  The dinner dishes are always left in the sink over night.  The dishwasher is constantly running, or waiting to be emptied.  There is always laundry going.  I went through the motions this morning, getting more and more stressed out.  I cannot let the house go, I have to have it halfway decent. . . .so I spend time cleaning only to have it messy again and again.  Yes, the kids help but I’m in charge, ya know? Is this the constant lament of the homeschooling mother?  I was making the kids their little game cards for their “Africa” geography game this morning, feeling actual ANGER that I didn’t even know how to pronounce most of the countries!  How am I supposed to know?  I frankly don’t even want to know!  I’ve managed to survive the first 31 years of my life without knowing all the countries in Africa!!!!!

I have sick kids this week, too.  Caleb woke up this morning with a fever and runny nose. . it’s the same thing that Jacob and Ethan are getting over.  But that’s the life of a mother. . .we’re nurse and housecleaner and cook and and and and. . . . .

I was standing by the kitchen table earlier, ready to blow, just standing and staring. .frozen, when all of a sudden the phone rang.  It was my friend Kathy. . . . .

boy did she get an earful!  It’s nice to have a friend that can listen to it all. . and that was just what I needed, to talk it out.

So.  We’ve done half a day of school and now is lunch time.  After lunch we will finish school.  The kids are thrilled because they read in my teacher’s manual that we get to make animals out of dough!!!!!!!!  We have NO DOUGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I can’t dash their hopes so I will be making the dough.  HURRAY!  Another pot to wash!  LOL  To say nothing of the dough animals.  They’ll be hanging around for a few days, only to be tossed in the garbage.

I could go on but I won’t. . .


I need to spend a long time on my knees today. . . . .


EDIT–just want to say that the sun came out!  I was so happy I yelled “look out the window!!”. . .also, I d
ecided to have some fun at some point today filling out my valentines.  My party is Saturday!


Edit #2– Friends, I just had something so sweet happened!  I just went to get the mail and there was a card for “Grace and Family” from a strange address.  I could not believe my eyes when she opened the card!  A few years ago, when we sold our previous home, we also had a litter of kittens we were desperately trying to find homes for.  Grace was 6 at the time, and helped give one away.  Listen to this card:

“Dear Grace and family,

I’m not sure if you remember me but I was a real estate appraiser that came to your home in 2006.  I remember Grace as an amazing and persuasive child who made sure I took home a kitten named ‘Daisy’.  We renamed her in honor of Grace and my daughter’s middle name.  This beautiful feline has blessed our family in so many ways.  My husband became gravely ill shortly after we met and that little kitten has been such a wonderful cuddle shoulder for my kids.  We are all well now but I did want to thank you and let you know what an impact that day had on our family.  God bless.”





Amazing Grace!



Alright.  So.  I put on make up today.  Which is very very unusual these days.  Joanna suggested bright pink lipstick and sent me a crazy photo of herself wearing some. . .which I can now use as blackmail.   I don’t have bright pink ANYTHING, except for the tank I put under the green shirt I have on today. . . .so, that will have to do.

I came out of my room after applying the make-up, and Jacob looked at me and said, “Where are you going?”  “No where,” I said. 

“You don’t look like Mom with that stuff on your eyes.”

(that was a compliment, he just didn’t know it!)

We took some fun pictures.  I got to use my Christmas tripod again.  What an awesome tool!

And, you know what?  I do feel much happier after doing this!



This was right before Caleb fell off the dresser.  Oops.




I’m thinking about this quote that Joanna sent me years ago:

“When she was in her eighties, she told her

husband that the happiest time in her life was spent sitting at the round

kitchen table in their small house with all her children underfoot.”  ~M. Stoddard


Even though Jacob is 11, he still has his “blue-blanket” and I love that!