Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bringing 'em up

Boys...

I just don't know about them.

I picked up Dobson's book, "Bringing up Boys" at Pastings (Hastings) yesterday. The boys go and play with the trains in the kids section and I usually sit near and read something. The first 2 pages were good. I want to own the book. I've heard lots of good things about it.

Besides, I need to understand as much as I possibly can about guys. I want to know what I'm up against and see if we can explain away some of this behavior:
























Monday, March 30, 2009

Welcome back!

My sense of humor had been missing for about a week. It returned sometime during the afternoon. Not sure exactly when, and I have to admit, I was a little surprised when I heard myself laugh. It sounded strange --foreign. We are going to spend tomorrow getting reacquainted. The boys will be at MDO and I am going to visit with the ladies I just finished a 10 - week Bible study with. Then I will eat a PB&J, read my "Family Fun" magazine and then take a nap. Maybe after that I'll sit around and tell myself some good jokes. Leave a comment if you have a good joke for me.

Here are a few things that happened today:
  • Ty got an "all clear" on his ears. Infection is gone.
  • Jack has taken up medicine. You may call him "Dr. Jack." He was practicing on me today with his only piece of equipment: a toy hammer. He used it as a stethoscope, auriscope, laryngoscope, band aid and reflex hammer. We've been to the Dr./ER about 4 different times in the last 2 weeks. He's a pro now.
  • Ty also practiced his medical skills. He used the hammer to work on me -only he used the hammer as a hammer.
  • Noelle Mathis came over today. She took her shoes off for a moment, put her bare feet on the floor and then told me that she needed to put her shoes back on or the dirt from the floor would get on her feet...
  • Jack got his nose wiped with a dryer sheet. Oops.
  • Ty was pushed in the double stroller by Noelle and Jack.
  • I got to sit outside on the porch and rest for about an hour (while the boys were playing around me). It was SO refreshing.
  • Lawson sent me a cool verse (see comment in the last post). Thanks Lawson. It's displayed in my kitchen now.
  • Mike called (unfortunately it was before my sense of humor came home). Please call back Mike!!! I'm much more pleasant now.
  • I bathed two kids, participated in a conference call, drank ice tea and put the kids to bed -all at the same time!

And that's been the day.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Another Sunday.

Blessed be the name of the Lord.

Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty.

The Lord has promised good to me.

He will my shield and portion be, as long as life endures.

Come and lay your burdens down
Before the Friend who's faithful,
Before the One who's able.

All I have in you is more than enough.

How awesome is the Lord Most High.


Today I have needed to have truth blasted into my ears.

Today I have felt so weak.

It was another Sunday. Another unobserved Sabbath.

Quick question for you Bible scholars: Does the Sabbath apply to women? (yes, I am seriously asking this). I have recently read through Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers. All about the law. What to do on the Sabbath, what not to do. It addresses lots and lots of things that are the man's responsibility: livestock, burying the dead, what work is permitted. It doesn't mention how much work the woman is supposed to do. I didn't see any mention of dealing with kids. Is that excluded? Are the women (according to the Old Testament Law) supposed to be the helper for the man -so he doesn't have to do any work on the Sabbath?

Yes, that was a serious question. Don't answer it if all you can give is your opinion.

I think all I did today is go from one job to the next. The only time I've rested is while sitting in Sunday school -and Jackson was teaching on Galatians and we had to flip around back in Acts so I'm going to consider that work as well.

Then to nursery duty, then immediately to my boys, to the car, out of the car, taking a sleeping Ty to bed, making lunch, cleaning up lunch, cleaning the kitchen (several days worth), putting Jack to bed, picking up toys, getting Ty out of bed, getting Ty lunch, cleaning the downstairs bathroom, cleaning up Jack's poop that he smeared all over the upstairs bathroom, cleaning up Jack, cleaning up poop from the carpet in Jack's room, cleaning poop off the upstairs hall, getting the boys drinks, going to pick up Jack's prescriptions at HEB, coming home, cleaning up Jack's second poopy underwear, cleaning Jack's third poopy underwear, making supper, feeding the boys, cleaning up supper, cleaning up the boys, putting them in the stroller, taking them on a walk, pushing them in the swings at the playground, walking home, changing a diaper, cleaning up spit-up off of the carpet in the boys room, putting on pajamas, brushing teeth, getting more drinks, saying goodnight.

It was unbelievable to me at one point, "How can this all be happening back-to-back-to-back"?

I honestly don't have any idea how people live without Jesus. What would the point be?
REALLY! How do they do it? I am pretty sure I would have taken my life by now if I believed that there wasn't anything more to life than just making the best of living.

I thought about that for a long time today. How do people stay married? Why wouldn't moms desert their family? Why stay in a situation where you aren't appreciated when this is all there is to life?

But this is not all there is to my life.

Why... why... why?

Here's my answer to all the "whys":

Because I love Jesus.

I'm not doing this for me, I'm doing this for Him. I want to serve Jesus because he already gave everything for me. He loves me and one day I'm going to go to heaven to live forever with Him. I serve others because I want other people to know my Jesus. I want my boys to know my Jesus.
Because without him, what is the point?

I am weary.

Today our church observed the Lord's Supper. A deacon came into the nursery with the bread and wine (juice). He asked if we wanted to partake.

I stood there with a fussy baby on my hip looking at the cup and the bread.
I thought: "I'd like to take this, but I haven't been able to sit down and examine myself to see if there is unconfessed sin in my life that I need to address and get right before taking communion."

I took it anyway.

It was the perfect picture of my life right now. Wanting to have communion with God but having so much responsibility that I can not hardly do it.

I desire to sit and rest in the arms of my God, I am being faithful to read His Word. I am not wasting time on meaningless things. This blog is the closest thing to wasting time that I do. I am serving my rear off. I am praying.

But I am struggling. I feel like there is little to no life in the Scripture I am reading. I go through it so fast that I know I am missing things. If I slow down, my mind will wander to tomorrow's chores or I will fall asleep.

If I had time to sit and think about it, I think I would be really frustrated.

Friday, March 27, 2009

To Daddy

Mike this is for you!


(remember to mute the music)



video


Basically, what he was trying to say was:

"It was good to see you, thank you for the movie."


Reading books before bed time. The boys are looking at a "History of Flight" book. Ty is demonstrating the concepts.

What is a MILITARY Wife?

I just finished closing on the house. It is no longer our responsibility. I'm just glad I can close the book on that one. I'm not overly excited or relieved. It's just life. One less thing, but I know there will be many more things. Last night at a dinner for deployed families I picked up this paper with the following poem written. It is very accurate. I like to try to understand different lifestyles, but it's hard unless you live it or someone gives you a really good run-down.
This is a good description:
What is a MILITARY Wife?
-
-
A Military wife can be tough to describe.
She is a southern belle, a northeastern Mets fan, a California 3rd generation recycler, a Pacific Islander.
She is short or tall
a tomboy
a fashion diva
a physician's assistant
a Republican
a Democrat
a home-schooler
a scrap-booker
an accomplished cellist
an auto mechanic
What IS a Military Wife?
WHAT is a Military Wife?
What is a MILITARY Wife?
They may look different and each is wonderfully unique
But they have this in common.
They have THIS IN COMMON!
lots of moving---
moving
moving
moving far from home
moving two cars, three kids and one dog --all riding with HER of course
moving sofas to basements because they won't go in THIS house
moving curtains that won't fit
moving jobs and certifications and professional development hours
moving away from friends moving toward new friends
moving her most important luggage; her trunk full of memories
often waiting-
waiting, waiting, waiting for housing; waiting for orders;
waiting for deployments; waiting for reunion; waiting for phone calls;
waiting for the new curtains to arrive;
waiting for him to come home fore dinner ----AGAIN!
They call her 'military dependent', but she knows better
she can balance a checkbook
handle the yard work
fix a noisy toilet.
She is intimately familiar with drywall, anchors, and toggle bolts.
She can file the taxes, sell a house, buy a car, or set up a move, --
--all with ONE Power of Attourney.
She welcomes neighbors that don't welcome her.
reinvents her career with every PCS; locates a house in the desert, the Arctic, or the deep south and learns to call them all 'home'
She MAKES them all home.
She is fiercely IN-dependent
Military Wives are somewhat hasty
They leap into decorating, leadership, volunteering, career alternatives, churches and friendships.
They don't have 15 years to get to know people.
Their roots are short but flexible.
They plant annuals for themselves and perennials for those who come after them.
Military Wives quickly learn to value each other.
They connect over coffee, rely on the spouse-network and accept offers of friendship and favors and record addresses in pencil.
Military Wives have a common bond.
The Military Wife has a husband unlike other husbands. His commitment is unique. He doesn't have a job, he has a 'mission' he can't just decide to quit.
He's on-call for his country 24/7 but for you, he's the most...
Unreliable guy in town!
His language is foreign: TDY, PCS, OPR, ACC, BDU
And so, a Military Wife is a translator for her family and his.
She is the long-distance link to keep them informed the glue that holds them together.
Military Wife has her moments---
She wants to wring his neck, dye his uniform pink, and refuse to move to Siberia.
But she pulls herself together.
Give her a few days, a travel brochure, a long hot bath, a pledge to the flag, and a wedding picture.
And she goes.
She packs.
She moves.
She follows.
Why?
What for?
How come?
You make think she has lost her mind.
But actually it is because she has lost her heart.
It was stolen from her by a man
who puts duty first
who longs to deploy
who salutes the flag
and whose boots in the doorway remind her that as long as he is her Military husband,
She will remain his Military wife.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Why I send Mike away every March

I have nothing to write about.

Thank goodness.

No "hilarious" stories mean it has been nice and easy for Becca.

Really, I am just trying to come up with something else to do besides clean the kitchen.

Mike sent us a DVD of himself reading a book to the boys. He also mailed the books with the DVD. Jack liked it. Thanks Mike! Ty liked it too. He kept trying to sit on top of Jack in my lap while holding a random book in his hands. He definitely got the right idea.

I think Mike's moustache scared the boys. It did me. Thank goodness that is temporary! (Moustache March is going on in the military).

We've been reading the cat in the hat a lot lately.

Today Jack picked up his yellow ball cap, put it on his head and said: "I'm Jack in the hat."

And that's all I've got folks....

Lame I know.

But I guess I should go do those dishes...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Therefore I will remember you.

It is Tuesday. I've been thinking today, what I might write about tonight if I got on here.

Two different topics are still floating around in my head.

I've had several very hard days in a row. I miss my husband. I don't miss him in an "I'm lonely and bored" type of way. Oh no... no... no.... if you've ready any of my last posts you KNOW I'm not bored. Wish I was, but I ain't.

I miss Mike's voice when he comes in the door after work, always cheerful. Never does he come in complaining about his day or expressing frustration or tiredness. Nope. He walks in the door ready to be a blessing to me. I hope one day soon he will be able to say that about me.

I miss seeing the boys play on the floor with Mike. It always makes my heart smile when I see my sons getting to be with their father.

I miss eating lunch together. Thanks to living at the job site, it's a short commute home for lunch. I love it.

I miss visiting about basketball, who we want to have over for dinner and games, Lost, what we need to buy at the grocery store.

I miss lying my head on his lap while we watch TV.

I miss the clean kitchen at night! (Mike you are really the greatest husband ever for cleaning supper dishes.)


Funny...

This wasn't what I was thinking I would write about....

Oh right, I was just telling you about my hard days and then switched over to missing Mike....

Ok, back on track now.

Because of my rough days I can either: complain or praise.
Naturally I want to complain, let all of you know exactly how bad I have it, how you should be so thankful that you live here while Mike is away "fightin' for your freedom." And on and on. But the more I focus my thoughts off myself and on God I realize:

"We're not doing anything special."

God called Mike to the military just like he called most of you to your jobs. No different. If we are being obedient to God then why should I feel like I am really sacrificing? I'm not. I'm just following.

Like you are following.

That's it.

So the pity party is over. The hard days are still here, but gradually getting better.

Why are you downcast, O my soul?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.
My soul is downcast within me;
therefore I will remember you.
Ps. 42
I am going to remember my God.
Here are the ways my God has blessed me today:
  • Boys sleeping till 7:00
  • Ty wakes with a smile on his face
  • We remembered to take Jack's shoes with him to MDO
  • MDO (Mother's day out)
  • Bible study
  • Katie sharing her God story
  • Getting to mow the yard (I love mowing!)
  • Finishing the painting on the old house
  • coffee
  • Amy Johnson
  • Jill and Becky offering to watch the boys while I close on our house
  • Not having a headache most of the day
  • Sarah Beth coming over and making dinner
  • Going on a walk with my stroller
  • chips
  • Getting some sunshine while pulling weeds
  • Ty eating all his supper (without falling apart!)
  • Jack eating most all his supper
  • Ty starting to feel better
  • music
  • Ty going to sleep easily at 7:00 -even before I was ready to put him down
  • Jack being tired early
  • Tim and Sarah Beth hanging out and laughing with me
  • a quiet house
Seems like a good list.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Making music

video

I'm doing better today. I know you are all real concerned for the boys safety.

Here is a short clip of them playing music. Mostly just here for their dad to see.

They miss him.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

BED TIME










Two word:

BED TIME

Dang.

What a stinkin' difficult day.

I think we really ought to observe the Sabbath on Saturday instead of Sunday.

Because Sundays are DEFINITELY the Devil's day not the Lord's day. At least they are at my house.

I'm going to give you a brief rundown of the day.
(Mike, do not call care.com back and tell them to send someone out .... promise?)

It starts at 7:15. -I can't complain about that.

We eat, dress and leave for church.

Nothing out of the ordinary.

Just regular WORK.
(see, I don't even observe the Sabbath the way it is supposed to be done anyway.)

We get to church and I:
  • open the van doors,
  • get Jack out of his seat,
  • instruct him to get on the sidewalk,
  • throw my purse over my shoulder,
  • place the diaper bag over my shoulder,
  • put Ty on my hip
  • pick up my Bible

yes, I look like a pack mule -except that I am wearing a cute skirt and kitten heels.

My Bible is unzipped and when I pick it up, special papers that have been stored in there since the last decade, FLY out (very windy day).

Hmm.

Lovely.

Onward we go. Jack walks toward the nursery then decides he'd rather do other things. (whose idea was "free will" anyway?) Now Jack is fussing, I need to get Ty out of my arms to address this Jack issue.

I hand Ty into Dodie's outstretched arms (his wonderful Sunday school teacher).
As Dodie brings him in toward her body, he throws his head back and SMACK!

Pops her on the cheekbone with the back of his head.

The sound it made echoed down the hallway.

If you are my real friend then you are cringing, not laughing.

Are you?

I wasn't even sure how to react to Ty giving an adult a black eye. That hadn't come up yet in my two years, nine months and nine days (but whose counting) of parenting.

I don't even remember what happened to Jack. Maybe some other nursery worker convinced him to go to class.

I just stood their looking at Dodie thinking:

"I... I... I don't even know what to say. Maybe I shouldn't say anything.... she's in pain.... people in pain don't want to know how sorry you are. They just want to stop hurting. So much for Ty's biggest advocate in the nursery. Dodie was one of three friends who came to Ty's birthday party. Next year we aren't going to have to make as much cake...."


She needed ice. I told her I would get it. She insisted that she'd get it, probably thought I'd done enough already. I walked to the kitchen with her anyway...

Good grief.

Word travels fast. By the time I got to the education building and up the stairs, people already knew of Ty's assault on Dodie.

Seriously?

Yes.

And we all thought South Side women don't gossip...

At least now I have a good "bad kid" story for the next retreat.

The day doesn't end here. You might as well go get a cup of coffee and come back.

After church we were invited out with a large group of my friends. Sounds good. I felt like we could pull it off because a sweet young friend of mine had offered to help with the kids -and she is good with kids.

We get to Rosa's, order our food, sit down. No part of that was easy. The boys are hungry. Ty prefers not to sit in a highchair. Jack wanted a drink 5 minutes ago and I can't find a lid that fits our cup. Nice.

Our order comes. Jack is content for a few minutes with his burrito. Ty, not so much. He screams. The other "better" moms are looking at me. They look with pity in their eyes. I shrug and try not to look too embarrassed.

Ty screams off and on (mostly on) for the next 10 minutes. I finally give up and give him the Dr. Pepper. First time he's had carbonation. He liked it.

So the relaxing part of lunch looked like this:
Ty drinking through a pinched straw.
Jack eating a very messy burrito.
Becca holding Ty, pinching the straw, and nibbling on a soft taco.

When the Dr. Pepper was gone, so were we.

I don't think the whole table had gotten their food when we left.

I left in defeat. There was no hiding it. Had I waited it out another 10 minutes, I might have been able to fool some people. Didn't happen.

I buckled the boys up in their car seats, started the engine, and wouldn't you know it, those sweet little angels were asleep.

I was hungry. I thought about picking up some fast food.
I didn't.
We got home. I carefully, slowly, gently pick up Ty to transport him to his bed...
and
can you guess what is coming?

He wakes up.

I put him in his room to keep him quiet while I bring Jack up to my bed.

I carefully, slowly, gently pick up Jack.....

He wakes up.


Where do I go to check myself in? Do I need to drive myself to a mental hospital or will they pick you up?


Tonight they had corporate worship at church.

I feel like I need to confess, I wasn't too interested in hearing about the Old Testament feasts from the Jewish guy.

My main motivation for attending tonight was

two words:

FREE CHILDCARE

Saturday, March 21, 2009

like ring a round the rosie

When we moved into our home last summer Hannah came and helped me decorate. We came up with this "FAN-C" design to display some pictures and take up some space on a huge wall.
See how cute it is? It is supposed to resemble an eye chart at a doctor's office.
(Ya know, since there is an E at the top
-stands for Ellis).

Today we changed things up a bit. Now it's just well...

shorter.






I think he feels bad about it. My first thought was that he used the broom to knock them down (notice the broom in the background, it wasn't there before this happened). But when I ask him if the broom knocked them down or if Jack did, he says it was Jack.







When I came down the stairs Ty was sitting in the middle of this picture, surrounded by sharp shards of glass. He wasn't cut. (Thank you Jesus!) Proof that there are angles watching over my family.





Jack was wishing those angels would protect him from what he imagined would inevitably follow this scene.

Looks like he was scared... (look closely at his crotch)

I almost didn't put this picture on here because of his "accident" but I did.
Hope he's not too embarrassed if he sees this when he is older (sorry Jack).
-
And just where was his mother while this was going on?
-Upstairs trying to decide how to wear her hair.
-
We were about to head out to some friend's house for dinner.
-
Later we were talking about how this happened and he just said:
"like ring around the rosie, Mommy"
Do you get it?

Friday, March 20, 2009

Does it get any better than this?

Wanna know how sweet my husband is?

Well I'll tell you. (Gina, you should have had more than one boy. You did a good job with this one!)

So here's what he did.

I was telling him on the phone how hard it was for me to take the boys away from home.

Jack, not so much, just he's busy and wants to be a boy and explore and all. He's 2. Just small enough that someone has to watch him all the time.

Ty, a different story. He gets into everything, he eats dog food, dirt, marbles, legos, rocks and acorns. He pulls my hair and then rubs the tips against his face -preferably his ear. He is fussy, won't sleep, and a picky eater.

(Found out today that he still has ear infections in both ears and is cutting all FOUR of his one-year molars at the same time.) That explains a lot. But, I didn't know this the other day when talking with Mike.

So I'm telling Mike that it might be really hard on us to move up to Little Rock with him this summer (if it works out that he goes). We might try to come two weeks after he gets there and come home two weeks early.... we'll see.

All this info translates in his mind into: Becca needs more help with the boys.

So here is where he goes: care.com

He searches this site and finds out they have a babysitting service. After doing lots of research, he signs up to access the info, is now receiving emails, and I got an automated phone call yesterday afternoon.

All from the other side of the world. Cause he wants me to be taken care of.

Sweet huh? Then, as if that wasn't enough, he trys to convince me to actually let these people come over. I told him I was doing fine and that I have lots of babysitters here that I can call if I need them.

He doesn't believe me. He thinks I won't call. So he will -as my provider, provide me with rest despite my insistance that I don't need that much of it.

I talk him down. Then I promise to call Brianna to come over today to help.

He agrees.


But here is the email he sent me today:


Hey Hun,

Had one of the girls reply back from the Care.com website. If you are truly interested in maybe getting her to watch for one of the days, then let me know. You can find her message and bio at the Care.com website. Login is xxxxxxx and password is xxxxxx. from there you go to the top right HOME icon. Then her name is Caitlin S. She has done some babysitting for her youth minister while she was in San Angelo. I think you can click on her picture and it will pull up her bio and information. Let me know if you have had a change of heart.

Love,
Mike


told you he was sweet.

Choose a shipping address

Choose shipping address:

Michael Ellis, Montana St., Dyess AFB, TX 79607, United States
Rebecca Ellis, AA Street, Randolph AFB, TX 78215
Michael Ellis, Inverness St., Abilene, TX 79606, United States
Michael Ellis, Brookside Dr E, Bryan, TX 77801, United States
Rebecca Ellis, Copperfield Dr. #1217, Bryan, TX 77802, United States
Rebecca Ellis, CR 3101, Greenville, TX 75402, United States
Michael Ellis, Copperfield Dr. 1217, Bryan, TX 77802, United States
Michael Ellis, Lynn Batts #3210, San Antonio, TX 78218, United States
Michael Ellis, Copperfield Dr. 1217, Bryan, TX 77802, United States
Rebecca Ellis, Illinois Dr., Jacksonville, AR 72076, United States
Michael Ellis, Illinois, Jacksonville, AR 72076, United States
Michael Ellis, Brookside Dr E, Bryan, TX 77801, United States


This is what happens when we try to buy something from ebay or amazon.com.

We are reminded how often we move. It's a lot. I'm afraid we've been in Abilene long enough for me to put down my longest roots. I don't even want to think about leaving. There are so many people here that I love and will miss when we move. The good thing is that I have friends in many towns now. All over Texas and several other states. Any time we want to vacation we don't have to worry about getting a hotel!

More pictures from camping

Sorry folks, tons of pictures coming up. Hope you aren't bored. I guess really, most of you will be elated to see pictures of the boys and not have to hear my latest ramblings.

Below is proof of why Hannah really is the best.




























Thursday, March 19, 2009

See what I mean?

So, I'm back from my sabbatical. Got home a hour and a half ago. Home to Abilene. It's always nice to be back. I had a wonderful time at the women's retreat, home to Greenville, and camping. I got to see my family and some friends from our old church. (Hi Carolyn Scott!!)

I'll write more on those events another day. Just wanted to show you what I meant by my last post about pictures from behind. Here are some examples of what I'm talking about. I think you will like them as much as I do.

















Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Going

This picture is the wallpaper on my phone. This was taken a couple of days before Mike deployed. We took our sandwiches to the park, ate and played until it started getting dark. The boys are on their way back to the van. I love pictures from the back. I always have. You get to see what the subject sees. I can always imagine what they are thinking because we are seeing the same thing. Looking ahead. The backdrop is the future. It doesn't matter so much where you've been, but where you are going. Maybe that is why I like these photos.

Prayer for our Children


I've decided in the last few days that I want to revamp my prayer life. I will now be intentionally setting time aside for prayer -as opposed to very few, short moments while I am engaged in at least one other task. It is foolish not to use this power we have been given.

"The fervent prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." -James 5:16

Here is my plan. I am coming up with a "mission statement" prayer. I'm sure there is a better title for that... I want to have written down a specific prayer for: my children, my marriage and my life. Here is my first one:


Father,

Thank you for entrusting us with these children. I pray that you would guide Mike and I as we raise them to follow after you. Protect their spirits and minds from the evil ones. Help them to grow daily in their knowledge of you. Reveal yourself to them that they will know that you are God and will see their need for a savior. Save their souls. Never stop pursuing them. Show them your love. Teach them how to love you with their whole hearts. Help them to be kind, gentle, self-controlled, patience, humble, trustworthy, bold, responsible and respectful. Teach them about sacrifice. Encourage them when they stumble and show them mercy when they fail. Protect their spouses. Give them wisdom and control over their emotions. Make them warriors for you. Use these children to draw people to yourself. Guide them every step of their life as they follow after you.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

What is love?


I really like people.

Having grown up in a family with 8 kids, 2 parents and usually a dog, I was trained to tollerate people.

Mom and Dad did more than just make us get along. They made us love each other. I remember HATING to have to hug my brother or my male cousin after getting into a spat with them. The more I showed my disgust, the longer we had to hug. Yuck. I'm not sure if that training tool paid off in the short term. When I think about that those times when I was forced to love, I wonder: "Does God do that to us?" Does he sit down with us and say: You hug that nasty smelly person. I don't care if you want to or not. Just sit there and hug until I tell you to get up. Maybe not literally hug them, but love them.

What is love? (I know, I know, luv is a verb.) Thank you D.C. Talk.

The way I have loved Mike the last 12 years has changed, I have gone through different phases. I think about the different steps love takes as it matures in a marriage. It is sweet. Love right now is a very deep love, more like a genuine concern. Right now, I don't feel like I have to hug his neck every second in order to "feel loved." I don't know if it is because we have been together for so long, or if I have matured in my walk with Christ and now do not need to "feel" loved by him in order to be fulfilled. Feelings are not always reality. Feelings lie to you. I don't want to feel love from Mike. I want to know that he loves me no matter how I feel. Does that make sense? And I do. I do know he loves me.

A couple of weeks ago, my dear friend, Rachel, was praying with me during a Sunday night service at church. She prayed that I would rely on God for my strength and that while Mike was away that I would "Fall in love with Jesus."

When she said, "Fall in love with Jesus." I first thought, "huh. that's wierd." Then I thought about what it would be like to fall in love with Jesus like you fall in love with a person.

So that's where I was for a week or so. What is it like to fall -head over heals in love with Jesus?
I've been praying that same prayer that Rachel prayed for me.

And I think it's happening!

Here's what it looks like so far.
I just want to praise God all the time.
I can't get enough of worship music.
I'm joyful.
I'm content.
I just want to be around people; I want to love them.
I'm still tired and busy and life is still work, but it isn't so hard to love my kids when they are being difficult.

It's very interesting. I'm trying to make sense out of my thoughts. I imagine myself having reached the next floor of my Christian walk. I'm picturing it like a tall building with many floors. You start on the ground floor when you get saved and have to climb up the stairs to reach the next level. Each level representing a deeper understanding of God where a little bit more of him is revealed. The more you climb (study, pray, rely, trust) the closer you get to the next level. I am not talking about earning salvation here, just learning more about God and experiencing the benefits that go along with it.

I feel like I have just stepped up to level three (not near the top).

But I'm getting closer!




Sunday, March 8, 2009

Tennis!



















Jack
is
a
huge
tennis
fan!

He couldn't get enough of Aunt Chrissy's
tournament. Well, maybe he's not THAT big of a fan, I mean he does have some other interests.
Come to think of it, there are lots of other things he likes to do more than tennis.
I guess he's only seen anyone play tennis one other time, and it was Mike and Pop. He never talks about it. He never asks to play with the racket in the garage.
Maybe tennis bores him.

Correction:
Jack's not a tennis fan.

In fact, he likes napping more than he like's tennis. And that's saying something.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

WOMEN!

Today I left from a women's retreat with my church. I am back with the boys now at Mom and Dad's house.

It was good, really good.

I met a new chick, hung out with old friends, reached out to girls I didn't know very well and... went to room 293. We can't talk about what goes on in there. That's where the "experienced" women stayed. Don't think bad things when you see the word, "experienced." I can't think of any other way to describe it. I had no idea what I didn't know about these women -except for Carolyn, I had already figured her out.

I've decided that women's personalities are set by age 13 and after that they don't change. They refine, grow, mature (whatever that means), but no matter how old they get, they are still the SAME person they were back then. The same person, with a "grown-up" mask on.

You know how junior high students act. Some girls are loud, wild, daring, spunky, brave. Others are quiet, reserved, poised. Typically junior high students let it all out. I am ME! This is who I am. They show the world. Then they slowly disguised the person they are with things like manners and self-respect, and mature behavior. They give in to peer pressure and try to blend in with the crowd. They needed to attract a guy to marry them and couldn't risk scaring him off!

Oh, I wish I could go back in time and visit these women as 7th graders, to see who they were. I wonder if I'm on track with this or way off.

This weekend I saw some people take off their grown-up mask. It was interesting. I was glad to see who these people are without their church clothes on. I loved seeing how they reacted to each other. How they love being around other women. I don't know what else to say.

Before you start reading things into what I am saying, let me tell you. These are Christ following women. They love Jesus. They serve for Jesus. They live to minster to others. Their heartbeat is for Christ. None of that changed this weekend.

But they let loose.

I felt like the new kid. You know, when you want to jump in to make jokes, but you don't really know what is funny to them and what is too far or what is too normal. So I did what I always do in this sort of situation.

I watched. I felt it out. I looked at the floor and shook my head.

I knew I was learning something about life, about girls, about Christians. I slowly realized what was being revealed in front of me.

Bonding
Freedom in Christ
Sisterhood

People are made for community. God never intended for us to walk this life alone. He made us to live not just around, but alongside others. His plan is for us to encourage, lift up, and learn from others.

How sweet it is to see such love. I saw women who were not afraid of being vulnerable with others; not afraid to expose themselves. No fear of judgment or rejection -only trust.

It was great.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Deployment is...

  • Not getting enough sleep
  • Having WAY less laundry to do
  • Sleeping diagonally in the bed
  • Shivering for 5 minutes in the cold sheets because there is no warm body beside you
  • No one telling you to turn the TV off cause it's getting late
  • Freedom to have PB&Js for supper
  • Doing the dishes every night
  • Forgetting what day of the week it is
  • Freedom to leave town whenever
  • Having to stay home from church if someone is sick
  • Not having company as often -cause really, who wants to come "Hang out" (meaning babysit your kids with you) on a Friday night
  • The bathroom staying clean longer
  • Not getting to be around the person you love most
  • Being so very tired each night
  • Saying a thousand sentences a day and most of them starting with "No"
  • Doing whatever you feel like doing, only you don't feel like doing much
  • Being Brave
  • Tough
  • Long
  • Necessary
  • Not understood by everyone
  • Everyone saying "We want to help" but very few really offering
  • A time to grow
  • When I feel the strongest and weakest all at the same time
  • Hard on kids
  • Easy on wallets
  • Not having any free time
  • The time when the Drive-In is the most fun
  • Going to bed at 9:00
  • When getting to church is hard, but staying home from free childcare is harder
  • Lonely
  • Hard even when it's an easy one
  • Easier when people come to see you
  • When getting sick is absolutely out of the question.
  • A free oil change
  • Losing weight (who has time to eat?)
  • Not having any clothes that fit
  • Long nights
  • Needing to cry sometimes -just as a stress relief
  • Being so proud of my man
  • Being so thankful for our country
  • Understanding sacrifice
  • Knowing that there are many people who are willing to fight for you
  • Being thankful for a husband who puts his calling by God (to the military) over his family.
  • Knowing how much Mike loves us and misses us
  • Wishing I had time to write long love letters to my husband
  • A time that makes the four months home so much sweeter
  • A blessing

This one is gunna be boring

Usually, when I write on here, I have some sort of plan or outline for my post. I sit down with the goal of making an "article" out of the ideas that have been bouncing around in my head all day.

Today I have nothing original.

Tuesdays I am too busy to be creative.

"Why am I writing if it's not going to be any good?" (You ask)

Well, because Aunt Susan said she gets on here every morning and is disappointed if there isn't anything new.

Because this is how Mike gets a little taste of home.

Because Uncle Robert is now a reader... Uncle Robert? Yes. That's what I said. -Found out from Aunt Nancy today. And, "No," I am not scared of him any more. But I do feel a certain pressure to preform since I know he's reading.

(I'm thinking....)

(nothing else is coming....)

"Say something Becca. Anything!"

uh...

"No, don't talk about poop again. People are tired of that."

Ty has an ear infection. Well, it's just sort of the start of an ear infection. He got some antibiotics and should be feeling better in 10 days.

Mike called today. He is doing well.

I had a really good frozen pizza for dinner tonight. We ate frozen pizza cause I was too tired to do anything else for supper. After picking the boys up from MDO we went straight to Dr. J's (walk-in clinic here in town) to get Ty's ears checked. Then after that, to the pharmacy to drop off his prescription. Then waiting for it to be filled. Then home.

After literally wrestling Ty for 2 hours I was tired. I held him in the waiting room at the Doc's office then in the base clinic (where waiting for his antibiotics).

Ty doesn't like being held.

So pizza it was. And it was good.

The boys are in bed. I need to do laundry but might watch "Lost" instead. I'm two weeks behind.

That's all for now. Told you it would be a lousy post.

Monday, March 2, 2009

And she spanked them all soundly and sent them to bed


There was an old woman
Who lived in a shoe,
She had so many children
She knew not what to do.
So she gave them some broth
Without any bread,
And whipped them all soundly,
And sent them to bed.

Poor Old Mother Hubbard, I think I know what happened inside the shoe that day. It was probably about two weeks into a deployment and she and her however many children were not settled into the new routine yet.

Probably the children had been fussy, discontent, irritable, possibly teething and just plain ugly to her and the other children in the shoe.

I'll bet she had lost her spanking rod in the van and hadn't given out any spankings the day before. Her children probably thought she was "all talk."

Old Mother Hubbard's two-year-old was probably the worst. He, lets just call him "Jack", was usually a very kind child but today wouldn't share his trains with the other children. He was probably poking the other children in the head with his finger. I'm sure he wasn't listening well. Either ignoring poor Mother Hubbard, or if he did acknowledge that he heard her, responded with a loud "NOOOO M'ammmm" when he was told to do something.

Her one-year-old, I'll bet he was on a tangent too. Besides his irritability with teething, he was probably just learning how to walk and experimenting with this new found Independence. I'd imagine that he was wanting to play with the other children, but getting frustrated that everything wasn't going just exactly his way. -Mother Hubbard was probably like that as a child.

I'll bet she marched those children to the upstairs part of the shoe and told them to go to sleep and not to get out of bed until they were ready to be nice boys.

Mother Hubbard probably wouldn't have reacted exactly the way she did if she had had a break in the last 384 hours. She wasn't thinking all the way straight at this point. She would probably have given the children some bread with their broth. Everyone knows that it is much easier for children to eat broth when they have some bread to sop it up.

At least, that's how I imagine it might have happened.