From The Mud Puddle

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Well I am sort of wondering why Im still awake...I really should be asleep here. Perhaps in a few. Kids and I watched the first two episodes of Dr Quinn Medicine Woman that we found on VHS in our cabinet. Long forgotten that it was there, it was a nice surprise. Has been a while. I miss that show. I started wondering if perhaps they had the seasons of it all on DVD now. Appears they do through season 4. Hmmm..might be a good thing for someday....especially once we someday enter the DVD age :D Hard to find good TV to watch as a family. My kids remember when it used to come on at lunch time. We'd watch it together when they were small. I'd send them to the table if it started getting bloody or the story line too much. (they were only 6-8 yrs the time) finding the old video that had been taped off tv. We decided we needed to watch Heidi again too, especially when I showed them that Jane Seymour was on that movie as well. They are making the relation between different actors and actresses that they enjoy watching and all the different shows they are on...and movies they are in. I know recently as we rewatched the Sound of Music, my kids took to Julie Andrews. That resulted in pulling out Mary Poppins as well as checking the Princess Diaries out of the library.

Oh and on the VHS tapes, was a senatorial campaign tv ad for John Edwards from 1998. (am in NC) Too funny.

Oh yeah, finally, praise God, I have all 4 of my tires I need on my car. My husband still needs his for his van, but God is providing in His timing and way. My computer still is not right, I need to take it in...but in His time,r ight? :)

Anyway...goodnight to whoever you are out there reading. Talk again soon, from the Mud Puddle! (oh and on Dr Quinn, she fell in the mud....on episode 1, I know exactly how she felt! ;)

God bless,

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Computer update: Am still here...but on borrowed time. Hoping to take it in somewhere soon!
I always come back from our church with lots of deep thoughts and sometimes it takes time for parts of what I just heard to soak in. Right now we are in the last couple of chapters of the book of Daniel. Yeah, now you know why thoughts would be particularly deep huh? ;) So far, so good...we have a good pastor that explains things well.
So our tire experiences just seem to continue to go on and on. This past Sunday on the way TO church, we had a flat with my car. Oh we knew we were getting close....but were waiting until Monday or Tuesday to get the two tires on the front. Well indeed we did get two tires, but by tonight, I was somewhat paranoid that I'd have a flat on the way down or back (without Jay there to fix it) I had a can of fix a flat (yes that stuff works) as well as a son just biting at the bit to change a tire! Sighz...I almost think he was wishing it would blow. I could have just stayed home...but God kept bringing it in my mind, that first couple of months when I would go to church sometimes without Jay (long story...he had to work)...and would basically get down there and back (65 miles one way) on a prayer...on HIS power...not my own in a car with many miles. So I prayed...and then trusted..and off we went. So thoughts turn towards Him, and praise that we got there and back with no flats. Off we hope to go Friday, God willing, for the other two tires when Jay gets paid again...but I am glad for the provision, for the manna of the moment this day as God carried us once again on our little bit of mustard seed faith. Gratitude

Monday, October 25, 2004

Well I have spent the better part of today messing with this computer. No no, not just wasting time surfing LOL, but actually trying to figure out what is wrong with it. I've also spent some time backing up some of what I have left that is not on CD yet "just in case". I still have a few things left to back up, but nothing that I would be too terribly sad without if the unthinkable happened!
The story goes like this, Last week, I did a partial defrag. It still had about 40 % left to take care of, but I needed to get back on here for a bit, so quit. Well, it started sounding "funny". I figured it was the harddrive ...and that it didn't know what to do anymore with a tight disk . It did this all week, sometimes sounding worse than other times. A few weeks ago I had bought some air, so was planning on continuing to defrag and to go in and clean out the inside some. I have a new mouse here waiting on me as well as I wanted to clean the keyboard and all the areas real good around my computer. Well this morning, as I was checking email, it just cut off totally. It wouldn't cut back on again. (yes I felt like calling 911, my dear computer friend was in trouble here! ((((My box of metal and wires)))) ;) Anyway, I opened it up, and aired it with the can of air. (that was fun-though probably did my allergies no good) I decided to try to start it up again, and it did! Hooray! But now I know I am on borrowed time. I know that the air was only a quick fix for what is truly wrong. (well am just having a hard time thinking positively-we have lived on borrowed time with this thing for a long time :) Also last night, it smelled. I didn't attribute the smell to the computer until it cut off and I got closer and smelled the computer...ewww...It smelled like one of those smelly magic markers. So now I wonder what I am /have been inhaling all day from the smell of the computer. Sighz. Someone has suggested to me it might be the power source or something like that. We'll see. I just hope to finish cleaning it all up, burning things off of it etc, so that I can rule out other situations. Ahh and just as I was saying to another friend "its been a year since my last reformat"...knowing I was doomed in saying so. Ahh well...This has been my day-in the life of my computer and myself.
Its funny , sort of...that as my husband and I were talking last night....the topic came up about things we'd take in an extreme emergency...Supposing we had the time to grab a few things. Suprisingly to my husband, as he knows this is "My world" so often( literally, when I've been sick, and when we only had one car...etc...), the computer really wasn't one of them. (perhaps if I had a laptop...but since I don't, the computer isn't one) We also talked about how we have tried again and again to become less hindered by our things and by the pull of this world. (and we're slowly getting there....praise God) We have done different things to lessen what is actually "ours" in our home, from selling on eBay, to giving things away that we do not need anymore. We even had a yard sale/give sale last year. When I die, I do not want a house full of stuff left behind that my kids have to go through and sort out. I would hope our monies would have gone more towards our survival, our kids and grandkids while we are here to help them as they have need as well as other things God may put in our path to do....I even wonder at times why we have homes. Ours is a modest home...and we do actually do more here than does keep us dry and clean. But so many just have homes to house their things. They own things, and have to pay to maintain things....and their whole existence is about their stuff. Hmm...just some thoughts there.
So we enjoy what God gives us to enjoy-but we hold it with a loose hand so that if God needs to, He controls when we have to let go of it and move on to what He has for us next.

Friday, October 22, 2004

To my little one Taylor-
Our last baby , We were so violently torn apart by circumstance. We both ended up in the arms of Jesus, just on different sides of eternity. Am thankful you ended up on the better side of eternity than I did for the time being. I've been thinking about you dear, this week. I hardly can believe it's been 10 years this week since we found out you existed, and were being taken from us all in the short span of 8 days. I often wondered if it hurt when you were ripped from your soft bed in my body. I often wondered if when you were growing in my tube, if you knew a mistake had been made, and that your body had planted itself in the wrong place.
I remember that day held in providence, when you and I parted. I remember the severe pain, and can see myself in the third person going through the motions of trying to figure out what was going on, calling the doctor and nurse...and finally the news ...and that we were yet again, loosing another tender child of ours. My heart broke, and I questioned if God had abandoned me, stopped loving me, but only for a time. Jesus put it back together, in His time, His way...and smothered me with His love asHe smothered you there where you are with Him. What I then questioned, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt. What I then greived, I learned through it, and grew because of it.
Tiny one, we didnt get to make many memories here in this temporary home where I am passing through, but I trust that you have had a blast in heaven! I can imagine you running around up there, singing, playing, praising the Lord. I can see you playing hide and go seek...knowing all the good hiding places between the folds of the clouds. I trust that you and your sibblings will give the four of us a tour on that day we join you there! I cannot wait to hear your giggle, and see your face all lit up with the breaking of a smile. As I praise the Lord here, I know I am joined with you as well in that we both know the Father in Heaven. Jesus is the center of it all. I know heaven is nothing near what I imagine, but more. I know that part of God's allowing you to come live with Him as He did, was yet another way of preparing my heart for heaven to live with Him there.
I think about that week we had together, and how my heart had a wall around it, refusing to allow myself to get close and love you with abandon as I should have then. As you know, I had already given birth to your sister and brother here, as well as had carried two others you found waiting for you in heaven...Malea and Grace. I just couldnt allow myself to get close to you. How sad. I know long ago, I made peace with Jesus about you and knew you knew I loved you, and love you still...and that you understood. 'Least you want to hear it again somehow...I do indeed love you and look so forward to finally being reunited to you in heaven.
Give my love to your sister and other sibbling that are there with you now, as well as to your grandpa, and the others that you dance with as you sing Holy Holy Holy around the throne of the Lord!
I will see you soon,

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Hi there,

I was going to type out something, well actually did type it out last night, about home churches and my family's experience in one. I posted it, and then decided to just make it a draft while I thought some more. I dont really know who you the reader is yet, so for me to post something, that while very significant in my spiritual life, just seemed to not flow with my slowly letting you get to know me and who I am, so put it on hold for now. Perhaps next week, or in another month or so. It was in somewhat a response to another blog I often read through. I just decided that my blogging needed to stay focused right now to the ebb and flow of where I am now and backtrack as applicable.

Spent part of the day traveling with my husband 35 minutes down the highway to Hillsbourough to get a new tire for his van. Last night , my husband was driving home at about 12:30 am, when his tire blew. We were already using the spare on another part of the car, so he didnt have that one available to him. Things have been VERY tight until recent weeks, and it just had been pushed to the back burner until we sorted out some of the bills that were due. We had planned on getting new tires for my car this weekend, since I travel to and from church alone once a week, and often am out in the evenings as well with the kids while he is working. The plan was to get my car set up then work on his. Well now he has one new tire...and needs yet another two (one of which is to replace the spare tire, which is the one that blew) Bad part about all of this, is that he was out in the middle of no where coming home...and couldnt call me to come get him, so he rode home on that tire, which turned into shreds along the way. I was horrified when I saw it this morning! Anyhow, why so far for a new tire? Simple, Sears wanted $102.00, Walmart tire and lube only wanted $45.00. Was worth the drive..especially considering the discount he gets since he still is working at walmart pt time.

I am amazed at the difference in pricing. Just seems that it is the way of the world though. I've considered and reconsidered this world a lot lately, and the things that go on...and how much we may accept, and how much we let pass by us that is not right.

Its getting late, and Im hoping he will be calling me soon to come get him from work. He tried to get the tire on, but since the bad tire was in shreds, it was too low to the ground for him to fit his jack under and turn it much without bending the turn thingy (technical term there lol) . He is going to borrow a hydrolic jack from our neighbor in the morning, but until then, I drove him this afternoon, and will have to go get him here in a few. Anyway, He got this new job two-three weeks ago. He likes it, and while not in his field doing what he had planned, it is blessing to have ANY job right now that will pay the bills (or any combination of jobs) We hope to have insurance again, we hope to get caught up on bills and many other things that are needed (like braces for my daughter, and new glasses and the like for myself and her) We trust in the Lord that He will provide. He taught us many new ways (and still is) in how to depend on Him this year and that He does indeed know when our power bill is due! ::smile::

I also applied for a job today. Idealy I'd like to continue to not work, but I know it would at this point help easy my husband's load and might become yet another way for God to provide for us. It would be at the public library in Graham. I leave it up to God though. I know phone book deliveries start in December, but this would be nice to have as well to keep busy and to have extra here to continue paying bills and for the holidays and all those awful things that we call "life". Its not that I mind working, just our plan has been for so long that I stay home and Jay does whatever he has to to work so the kids have someone consistantly always here. For 14 yrs , this is how we've done it, and are still open to things staying the same if God would have it be that way, but are also open to what else God may have for us as a family as we consider our future. So I leave all this job stuff in God's hands and will let Him decide if now is the time.

My other option that I really have also considered is going back to college and finishing my degree. When I left I was burned out! I had planned on going back, but as God so had it, He blessed us with a baby instead! So I put off going, even while my husband went back for a second degree here in recent years. I'd love to return again though, to finish...and to have the opportunity perhaps for better job opportunities as my two children enter college age in a few years(as we send both off into the world! EKKKK!) I am somewhat nervous about returning, but thought about taking a web designing or art class at community college or at the city arts in Greensboro(cheap class/no commitment) to get my feet wet before going back into the University setting.

Perhaps God is just prepping me, preparing my mind , heart and time before my kids get to college that I have my options wide open to be busy after all the years at home. I do not want to wish away my time with my kids....and would rather spend the remaining years deep into homeschooling them and being that constant...and so would rather God choose my path knowing my future and what is best, rather than for me to try to figure it out.


Thursday, October 14, 2004

They had called for rain today. We knew it was coming, but we were lulled into a false sense of no rain when the clouds kept breaking apart where we could see lighted sky of blue.

As we were getting ready to head out the door, we saw the downpour. We were leaving to go to church. I was gathering my "foods" that I could eat as I drove down the highway to church. It was raining hard! We gathered our things and ran in the rain to the car. The thought came to me , that if I drove on, I would probably drive right out of the storm enough that I could make it to church, and into church before the storm hit there. I also figured that I would make it back out again not in the rain, since the storm would pass while I was under the cover of church. I figure God orchestrated all of these thoughts in my otherwise muddled head trying to give direction and guidance through the storm.

So I ran, and drove with the kids in tow. (and my foods under my arm lol) We had to drive for a good 15-20 minutes before we were back out of the storm. I was beginning to think that maybe I should turn back towards home. Maybe home would be safer, dryer, less dangerous than trying to drive the 65 miles in the rain (most of which are on the highway) In anxious prayer, I asked God to keep us safe as we traveled, and to give wisdom if we really needed to turn around and come home. But here we were, coming out of the rain...coming out of the storm....slowly drying off as we continued down the highway. Not only that, but we began to see that sky blue through some of the clouds. We also began seeing things in the clouds....a dog sucking his thumb....and a bear on his back (and since we only recently saw Country bears, the movie-I called this bear in the clouds a country bear lol) God was entertaining us with His cloud artwork. He took us from anxious to giggles as we looked up into His sky. We made it across the bridge that covers Jordan Lake, looking across its great width, and saw the sky, from one direction, you could see the sky slowly being taken over by the clouds....but my what a beautiful sight becomes praise to God each time I look at the changing sight each time we ride over it and take time to notice. We made it to church, and walked in on dry land...long before the storm reached church.

In the middle of the service, we heard the sky drop out. We all three grinned at one another, knowing that God had helped us make it to church safely and under cover-the cover of His church building, under the His wing....clean and dry.

The teaching was done by someone in the congregation tonight as our pastor was away...and while it wasn't as crisp and filling as the normal teaching from our of the verses just seem to sum up so graciously what I KNOW is true of God....even more now perhaps as we have been covered while in a horrible storm, not just tonight-but this past year as well. My place is in Gods palm. My life is in His hands. I am safe in God, and this is my prayer as I take refuge in Him.

Keep me safe, O God, for in you I take refuge.
Psalm 16:1

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

I'm still looking at this blog thing that I opened up back in February wondering what, if anything I might want to do with it. Mainly I just like to sign up for stuff that ends up sitting dormant time after time. I have a web page ...two or three generic ones, in fact that I cannot for some reason figure out how to get the pictures from point A to point B. Since it's suppose to be for my drawings, paintings and other graphics I do, sort of pointless to persue it until I get that figured out. I know what I am not doing right, but I do not yet know exactly what to do enough to verbalize my problem LOL. I guess I could grunt it out and perhaps someone would eventually feel pity and help...HELP...HELP. Im ok now...anyway, back to this blog...

Why do you blog? I've asked many that question and received many different answers. Somewhat being shy, I backed away from doing more with it I suppose, because I sort of wondered if it was a vanity thing. I just wondered since we are suppose to be humble as Children of God-coupled with the fact I didnt want to call attention to myself-if it was right-if I should. I also wondered if it was just a journalling tool, and if so, well then I really want the rest of the world to know all my muddy thoughts? Did I want them to really know how messed up I can be when no one is looking? Did I want to unveil what goes on in my head to those passing by....rather than keeping it safely tucked away in a journal by my bed? And so I wrestle with the thought, of why blog? I wrestled with the thoughts of comments or no...and if folks did leave them...what if they told me I was full of junk....would that bother me? Would I get defensive, would I make yet another puddle? My generation didnt grow up with computers in every home, the internet or many of the other things we take for granted now. This is all still so new, so foreign at times.

I know...I know, live-So here I am, typing a blog about my blog ...wondering if I should blog. I wanted to add a cute graphic..and have just the one in mind....but problem is that I have yet to find it on my many CDs thus far in order to use it on here. After that I wonder if I will be able to get my picture from point A to point B.

Anyway, not sure how much I may visit here, visit with you here....or what I may use this for. Perhaps it will be a smudgemark on the internet of my-messy-at-times life. Perhaps it will be a skidmark across the floor made when shoes trample all over the place after being in the mud. Perhaps it will just be a quiet place for quiet thoughts... or perhaps I will come and as my daughter once said...I will come and make a lot of noise. Perhaps...

Perhaps it will be a place for sharing my thoughts on God, on how I believe for anyone passing through that cares. The life I live in Christ is so cemented together with who I am, I know that things shared will cross into that . There is no getting around it. Perhaps it will be a place to come as I sort through life through my words and my artwork. Perhaps it will be a place to sort through thoughts as I climb the valleys and the hills of life. Perhaps it will just be a photograph of my life in words. Either way, hang on, grab a towel....this is my journey into blogging.

Friday, October 08, 2004

"Life is Messy"

I got this a few years ago-always thought it held a lot of truth, and really fit with the theme of this blog.

By Pastor Tom Holladay

.Proverbs 14:4 "Where no oxen are, the manger is clean, but much increase comes by the strength of the ox.

"Life is Messy! As one teacher who must have grown up on a farm put it, "There is no milk without some manure." In other words, if you want a good return it will cost you something - you'll have to feed the ox. It will not be easy - you'll have to shovel some manure. On our church staff we call this the N.M. - N.M. principle. No Mess - No Ministry.

The goal of life is not to keep the stable clean! Anytime you do anything there will always be some difficulty attached. Nothing will go exactly as planned. It always takes longer than you expected. God told Adam in the garden of Eden that one of the results of sin in this world would be weeds - work that is always harder than it feels it "should be."

The only way to excape the difficulty is to not do anything. I know some people whose stable is clean and well organized... because they've chased all of the oxen out! The barn may smell better, but the fields go year after year without a harvest.

So, while you're shovelling manure today (and you will be!) remember that the messes are a part of a meaningful life. Remember that those who make an impact on this world are going to have some really tough days. And keep on shovelling.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Mud Puddles

I came up with the phrase that I was in a mud puddle a couple of years ago. Actually I think I made the comment that I was swimming in a mud puddle. Seems I was always typing something online that got me into some sort of mess. I have learned that is just how things are online well as my puddle of thoughts that come and go about various topics. I am quite muddy, and often have felt more muddy than shiny and clean when considering myself next to God. I know its Jesus who makes me clean-but the more I draw near to God, the more mud I see on me.

Anyhow-so here I am-thinking online, rather than in the safety of my paper journal. This is your fair warning I suppose-reading this blog may get kind of muddy and messy from time to time-