Friday, February 28, 2014

Dream dosas

I have developed a small addiction to local breakfast foods. I admit that sometimes when I walk past a house where onions are frying at 9am, I want to invite myself inside. I probably could. In spite of my attempts, I just can't make mine taste as good. 


I never thought I'd say it but peanut chutney and dosa are my dream breakfast. I've come a long way!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

new to me

I'm usually behind the times.  Music is no exception.  Add life in a foreign country and I'm just plain out of it.  Here's what's new to me this week…and I'm lovin' it! 




Tell me what else I'm missing! 


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Date Night





A fab new cafe just opened in our city. There's a bar overlooking the glass enclosed kids' play area. For about $15 the kids had fun and we ate pizza and chatted. Not a bad deal in my book!


We'll be back, Bumblebee! 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Not What I Would Have Chosen

God did not give me what I wanted for this season.

I am here still, in the midst of it.  Instead of another wee one - miscarriage, infection, surgery and waiting. And there has been peace - tremendous, overwhelming, sustaining peace.  It sweeps the aches away sometimes and other times it just tames them so that I can move forward in the tasks I have been given. I am not overwhelmed with this place, and I give thanks to God for that.

There have been a few practices that have been immensely helpful to me in this season and I wanted to share them in the midst of it in case it would be of use to another.

The first is thanksgiving.  When I walked back into my house after learning of the loss of that baby, I looked at my sweet, lively boys…and I gave thanks. It was the beginning of a journey for me.  To chose not to covet what is not mine, but to give thanks for what has been given.  And a lot has been given.

The second is to submit myself to the sovereignty of God.  Even amid the mystery, to acknowledge that His purposes are never foiled.  They are strong and fast and sure, unmoved even by the brokenness of this world.  It has been a mental exercise for me in faith, the assurance of things hoped for, the certainty of things not seen. I have to make a choice to look at this world, so full of all that is confusing and sin-stained, and believe that, as it is written, underneath are the everlasting arms.

The third is to recount the works of God in my own life.  I have been actively following after Christ for a long time now.  Over half of my life has been spent seeking to walk according to His Word and His Spirit.  This means that I have had experience in this area.  The circumstances were different, but there have been other seasons when God did not give me what I wanted.  In some of those seasons, I felt it was the deepest denial He could give, stripping me of all that I thought would make me happy.  I am looking back through years now though.  And I can recount very specific instances when God denied me what I asked, and then after much pain and loss, He gave to me what I did not even know I needed.  And He gave it in abundance.  He works all things together for good.  Not in a trite, Sunday school motto way…but in a rich deep fabric threaded with his providential purposes. Long years of following Him has made it easier to trust His hand.  He is very faithful, even when I am faithless.

This may not be what I would have chosen for this year.  But this I know...

God is wiser.


Thursday, February 20, 2014

skills

We have a name writer….


Four is approaching fast! 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

beauty




So maybe I jumped out of the car for this picture today.  The ladies weren't sure they wanted their picture taken because "they weren't looking beautiful."

Oh, how I beg to differ.  

Monday, February 17, 2014

Monday Miscellany

1.  The boys got haircuts this weekend.  I'd like to say it was undramatic.  It wasn't.  We sheared them thoroughly to lengthen the interval before the next required salon scene. 




2. Valentine's Day was a grand success around our house.  Hubs came home from his trip with a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts.  This was no small gift.  I hate to tell you how many are left.  


3. On top of the donuts, once more, David valentin-ed me by fixing dinner and serving it in style.  I don't think we've gone out to eat once on V-day since we were married.  And. I. LOVE. it.  Our neighbors did come over after the dinner and send us off to a movie.  Sweet day. 

4. Oh, friends.  Who knew that preschool could be so dramatic? Today J got off the bus weeping because a friend called him a girl.  He passionately explained to me that he is not a girl.  At least we're clear on that.  The pinching after the aforesaid dialogue merited a bit more discussion. 



5. Obviously, we're just dealing with pushing and pinching around here at this point but I stumbled (thanks, FB) across this (old) article today by Abraham Piper.  He grew up surrounded by men and women of faith and spent four prodigal years.  I found it so insightful and wanted to throw it out there for any of you who might find it useful.

Happy Monday to you! 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Day Five

Hubs has been gone since Sunday.  And we are ready to see that man.  The boys have taken to wrestling the neighbors, and anyone else who will indulge them.  We've been running for almost an hour every night just to burn off the excess energy.  We are seriously counting down the minutes. They are in daddy-withdrawal.

As for this momma, I admit that though I have my moments on weeks like this, overall the focus helps me.  I know from the start that I am on duty 100% of the time. Something about that knowledge helps me throw my I-could-probably-get-this-done syndrome out the window and just be here.  I've been here all week.  And I can honestly write, I've enjoyed it, nap time failings and all.



A friend sent me an article last night reminding parents to view their kids as a blessing.  That is how God views children. It has helped me so much today to look at them and consciously acknowledge them as a true gift from God, not a burden on my time, a mess in my kitchen or just someone to chase down the sidewalk! Perspective shifts are good.

Hooray. It's day five here, and I'm still loving these blessed little ones.  

Come home, hubs!!! 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

music time

You should see this boy rockin' on his cereal box guitar! 





Tuesday, February 11, 2014

love is not rude

We are a growing household.  These boys are bigger, stronger, more. In the midst of the growing, I am learning some new things about attitudes because we have a lot of attitudes to deal with these days. If this is a precursor to the teen years, we've got a lot of adventure ahead.

Not long ago I was out with the boys.  I was pushing their 50lbs through the streets of a foreign land.  It was hot.  I was sweating.  People were staring.  Everyone needed something, including me.  I started getting frazzled and it soon deteriorated into a straight up bad attitude.  Sometimes I like my life.  And let's be honest, some times I don't.  It was one of those moments.

Questions were firing my way on all cylinders because I have a 3.75 year old.  That's what 3.75 year olds do, they ask questions. Some of my answers started getting rough.  All I wanted was a glass of lemonade and an English speaking baby sitter. Jude's attitude, which had previously been just fine, started to deteriorate as well.  I started getting huffy with him about his huffiness when he blurted out:

"Mom, why are you being so rude?"

And I stood still for a minute.  He was right.  I was being rude.

I wanted to make excuses.  I had a lot of excuses in my mind. Surely I was pretty justified in my frustration.  Everyone and everything felt like it was against me. But here was my nearest "neighbor," the one I am called to love, with a love that is not rude.  So instead of an excuse,  I really just needed to apologize for being rude.  I needed to sing a song or quote a verse or remark on something beautiful around me.  I needed to adjust my own attitude.

What I am learning in this season of attitudes is that more often than not, my children are mirroring my attitude.  When I am quick tempered, they are too.  When I am gruff, they respond gruffly.  They are peering through the hypocrisy of my correction and mirroring what they see in me.  Of course, this doesn't mean I don't still need to correct all the fits and disrespect that's flailing around our growing world, but I need to look in the mirror first.

Love is patient.  Love is kind. Love is not rude.

We are working on attitudes around here, and I'm starting with myself.  

Monday, February 10, 2014

American Football?


David misses American sports.  The poor guy really misses them. So when he heard that they were doing an exhibition game of some national teams playing American football, it was at the top of his Saturday list.  We loaded up the boys, took the nerf footballs NanNan sent, and headed to the field. While the football players themselves were so decidedly asian that it looked like a high school game,  I admit that even this non-football gal had fun.  The kids LOVED it.  And David was a happy man.  












Wednesday, February 5, 2014

not yet

We're on Day Three of a bad napping week.  The culprit is not big brother who's still a fairly faithful napper even though four is fast approaching.  It's that wild, extroverted little brother.  I'm rearranging the schedule a bit, trying to work in a few hard runs for the little man to wear him down, and planning a whole lot less for my afternoon time.



We're not giving it up yet...but it's on the horizon and I can't pretend I'm glad just yet.  Change hurts.  

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Car Wash


We had a little trouble napping this afternoon. So mainly for fun out of desperation, I tried a little idea I found on this post of 20 Toddler Activities.   The boys loved it.  I admit that we had a few no-nap fits after because I wouldn't let them turn it in to a full fledged water party with the water hose.  Nonetheless, it was a fun and creative way to tire them out.  They were fast asleep in their beds afterward.






Monday, February 3, 2014

Field Day





Jude had a sort of field day this weekend.  The actual title was "Health is Wealth Day." His teacher stopped David at drop off early in the week and expressed concern that Jude was not showing enough interest in the hoola hoop relay.  We took the matter in hand and talked hoola hoops every night at dinner.  We made a large banner to hold with a "Go Jude" in bold. David took Jude down early the morning of the event to show him the course and encourage him to have fun and participate.  Silas brought a cheer stick to shake.  We sat on the front row and smiled big smiles.  


But....

In spite of, (or perhaps because of) all our best efforts, when the rest of his class came out to run and get those hoola hoops, Jude screamed at the top of his lungs while his teacher carried him out, he clutched his bag of chips from snack time, and stood with his back immovably positioned to the crowd for the duration of the race, eating chips.  We weren't really that surprised....but a parent can hope.  

At least his teacher saw the cheer stick and sign.  

We tried.  

Maybe next year.  (Though I distinctly remember writing those words last year:)