Thursday, February 25, 2010

Day by Day

This picture with all the bowls on Charlie's appendages? That's him imitating Curious one episode, George makes himself a robot outfit! So, this is Charlie's interpretation of a robot! Pretty creative if you ask me!

I thought this was so cute! Charlie was reading in his chair and Piper joined him on her own! Of course, when I got out the camera, I took her attention!

Piper's getting around everywhere. She crawls like a speed demon and climbs like a monkey! I know she'll be walking before we know it because she's getting more and more brave about letting go of things.
Piper also has associated her babbling sounds with at least one word now. I'd like to say that word is "momma", but I"d be lying. Of course, the other day when Stephen walked through the door after work, Piper crawled to the gate, looked up at him and said, "da-da"! Now she does it all the time and trust me...I'm working really hard on "ma" sounds with her!!!
I looked around for Charlie the other afternoon and didn't see him anywhere. Well, I looked on the other side of the chair and this is what I found:
It is so hard for me to get a good picture of Piper because anytime she sees me with a camera, she comes flying toward me trying to get at it! So, they almost all turn out to be candid shots, on the run!

Sometimes a guy just has to relax and watch a little TV (as long as it's Curious George, Playhouse Disney, or a Pixar movie)!
So, these are the kinds of things that go on in our house day by day. I get overwhelmed, tired, frustrated, entertained, inspired, and uplifted in any number of ways on any given day of the week. I am not one to EVER claim to be fabulous at what I do, but it's what I do. I could never have imagined motherhood the way it is. Before becoming a mother, I had all these ideas of how it would be and what kind of mother I would make. After becoming a mother, all those ideas flew out the window! It is a daily challenge to serve, train, guide, teach, love, and care for my children. All I can claim is the redeeming grace of Jesus Christ as my strength and have no idea how many times a day I feel like falling on my face and crying out to him! My consolation is that He is there and He never changes - no matter how many times my out of whack emotions do. I can always go to the cross of Jesus. Thank you Lord! And just when I feel like giving up, I look at those two precious little people and am reminded of the God in whose image they are created and I realize that He's using me right here, right now, and I can keep going.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

What I am Reading

I LOVE to read! It is often how I end my nights, before I go to sleep. A friend asked me earlier what I am reading right now and I told her I would post it on the blog, so here it is for anyone who is interested!

I'm actually in the middle of 4 different books right now. Sometimes I do that - get into several at the same time. I don't know why, but anyway...

1. The non-fiction book I'm reading is called Loved By God, by RC Sproul. I usually try to alternate (or in this case, read at the same time) fiction/non-fiction to make sure that I'm not just tuning out or retreating into my imagination all of the time - tempting as that may be! I know that I need to use God's gift of reading not just for entertainment, but also to better myself and to grow into more of the person He wants me to be! I do think this is a very good and beneficial book, but it is taking me a long time to read it. It's not very long, I think I'm just having a hard time getting into it - you know how it is sometimes. I have learned some great things though and I'm making myself finish it because I know it's good for me! Discipline!

2. I've realized as I'm typing this that 3 out of the 4 books I'm reading are non-fiction, but totally different kinds. The second one I'm into is one I'm reading with a group of moms in my area. It's called The Bathtub is Overflowing but I Feel Drained! written by Lysa Terkurst. I'm enjoying this one a lot and so far, I would recommend it to any momma out there who ever feels overwhelmed , under-encouraged, or inept for the job (aka all of you)!

3. The last non-fiction I'm reading is a true crime story called Power to Hurt by Darcy O'Brian. It's an awful story involving a very corrupt, small-town justice system. I'm reading this because it happened in Stephen's hometown of Dyersburg, Tennessee and his dad was on the police force at the time and was involved in the take-down of the corrupt politicians! Crazy!

4. The fiction book I'm reading is Gone With the Wind. No, I have never read it before and I haven't even seen the movie believe it or not! I am absolutely in love with this book though! It is fabulous and I'm so glad I finally decided to dive into this classic, no matter how long it is!! I LOVE IT!

So, there you have it. I'll try to keep a running log (or blog, ha ha) of what I'm reading so you can see if anything strikes your fancy!! Ta ta, for now!! :)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Who's in control?

I think I will dare to say that Charlie is potty trained! He still sleeps in a pull-up for naps and night time, but during the day, it's big boy pants all the way! He loves wearing them and will just jump up and run to the potty whenever he needs to go. But...he wants to empty his potty chair himself and that is kinda gross! I have to run in there as soon as I hear that he's done (the "reward music" that his potty plays is helpful in this) and catch him before he starts to empty it himself!

Therein lies the problem. Charlie is such an independent little guy, and he has always been capable beyond his age. For example, he knows exactly how to get out a DVD, put it in the player, and play the movie; he knows how to go to the pictures on Stephen's phone and scan through them; he knows how to work the CD player on his dresser; he can open the refrigerator and find anything he wants (and is strong enough to get out even a full gallon of milk) get the picture. He's very capable. However, Charlie is not an adult. We are working on teaching him that he needs to ask permission before he does certain things...and respect the answer he gets. Just because he's able to do something, doesn't mean that he gets to, or even that it is the best thing for him. Let me just say that he hasn't caught on yet.

I find in this another mommy-lesson from God. Even as an adult, I am not God. Even when I think things should be a certain way, and even when I have the control to make them that way, He still knows better. And I might not like the answer He gives. My job is to learn the same lesson that I am trying to teach my Father and obey Him!

Wow! Humbled again!

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord." (Isaiah 55:8)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Momma thoughts...1

Being a wife to Stephen and a mother to Charlie and Piper is my calling in life. God has placed this on my heart as a full-time job and I love it! I don't want to be doing anything else. I am finding that no other job I've ever had has been more demanding or more rewarding. I am being taught, disciplined, blessed, spent, and renewed like never before. I learn more about God's precious grace and mercy every day.

God paints the Gospel in the everyday life of this momma so clearly! The evidence of our sin nature is there every day in my children, who are not yet saved, and then again in myself, who as a believer in Christ still struggle daily with walking in freedom from sin. I see so clearly my need for Jesus to do for me (and for my children) what we could never do for ourselves. And, in my discipline and forgiveness toward my children, I am reminded of how God lovingly disciplines us and forgives us when we disobey.

When Charlie acts against something he's been taught, I have to correct him, but I don't say "Great, now you've ruined it and I can never love you again." No, I just correct him, forgive him, and we move on with all the love I can give still available to him. That is such a beautiful picture of what God does for us. We disobey, our sin is punished (or has been in Christ), God forgives us (because of what Christ has done), and every bit of God's love is still offered and available to us! We just move on! Praise the Lord! I love that God's Truth is everywhere. He is so good to give us reminder after reminder of His grace and His love. Thank you Lord!

I'll have to practice at this, but expressing my thoughts and what God is teaching me is something that I've been wanting to do for a while now...the lessons are too good to keep to myself! I don't have any unrealistic expectations of being the best thing you've ever read or anything like that, but if even one person is encouraged or helped in any way from reading this, my transparency will be worth it. I'll leave you this time with a summary from God's word of what He's been showing me lately:

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (psalm 73:26)

What words of encouragement for a momma! Many more thoughts to come...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Why do I let this blog get so behind?!?

This could very easily be my longest post to date, since I am so behind in posting! I've been meaning to catch up on here for so long, but haven't been very disciplined to get it done! I've decided I want to begin a discipline for myself of writing on here more, but I won't start that with this post since it's already a mile long with pictures! I'll post a little blurb about the pictures and write more later!
Here are my little darlings with their "blankies" (Charlie's is named Simon and Piper's is named Simone). They each got these at birth and Simon in particular has become a bedtime must for Charlie and Simone is becoming one for Piper as well.
Here's a closer view of Simon and Simone, you can see they have the kids' names on them.

My sweet girl...she's had that tongue sticking out since she was born!
This was a morning she got her hand in the cereal bowl...and you see the results!

Here is Charlie dressed up for church in his Christmas outfit. He was so excited to get to wear a tie like daddy! (But he was not interested in letting me take his picture!)

My baby girl around Christmas can you not smile with that sweet face coming toward you?!?

Charlie put the Christmas hat on himself! He's enjoyed playing basketball in his room with his Mickey goal!

We're working on the brushing the teeth thing. I usually have to wrestle my way in there to get them good, but he does try (most of the time!).

Piper still eats some baby food, but she's learning to feed herself pretty well. How did I forget how to do all of this stuff in just under 2 years! I feel like I'm learning again for the first time! (Not that she's any different than Charlie was or anything!)

This is one of my new favorite pictures...our first really good one together! It takes me a while to feel "presentable" again after having a baby. It takes a lot out of a person you know!

Bathtime is SO much easier when you can economize and throw 'em both in at the same time! They love it too...although Piper is quite the splasher!

I put just about everything Charlie owns on him for his first romp out in the snow...can anybody say, "A Christmas Story"!

Charlie and daddy had a good 'ol time together!

Of course the Tennessee jersey was a purchase made by Stephen, but doesn't he look so cute anyway?!?

Charlie finally officially graduated to a big boy bed! He loves it and he sleeps in it really well. He was super excited about the Mickey sheets too!

I just thought this was darling and I snapped a picture real quick. My babies love to look out the windows and I love it when it turns out this sweet looking!

That's my little Pip!

She has a very contagious smile...I love it so much!

And finally, even Elmo gets a little thirsty sometimes!

Well, there you have it folks! As I said, more later from this momma's viewpoint (and of course I'll keep the pictures coming!).