Where'd My Baby Go?

I cannot believe how fast he's grown. A year went by faster than I could have ever imagined. Will isn't even a baby anymore, he's totally turning into a toddler. Now that he's walking this is much more prevalent. He toddles around babbling to himself and bangs on things with whatever toy is in his hand at the moment. The cutest new thing he loves to do is DANCE. I've got to put up a video of it. It's literally one of those things that makes my heart sing. And he doesn't just dance to anything...oh no, it's got to have a strong beat to it. The hip-hoppier the better. Wonder where he get's that from. ;) He's also becoming really attached to his blanket and "Hippie" (a little stuffed hippo from his cousins). I've waited for this forever, to see him cuddle up with a stuffed animal and his favorite blankie. Ugh, it's so sweet. And he finally listens to stories...he never was really interested in books before, but he is now. He toddles over to his bookshelf and picks out the same book every night, which of course we have to read at least 4 times. It's a pop-up book from his Godparents...I actually have to hide it from him so he'll go to sleep! He's in love with it. I'm really starting to enjoy him more and more everyday. He's my favorite.

Psalm 127:3 - "Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a blessing from Him."

This could not be any truer.


Yummy for my Tummy

At about 9:00pm I get a sweet craving. It's hard to not give into I have a little bit of a treat.

A cup of Tazo African Redbush and Tazo Wild Sweet Orange teas mixed together with a dallop of honey stirred in the glass. Delish. And to satisfy the sweet eat: a handful of organic vanilla animal crakers. Yummo. Dip the cracker into the tea, and it's even more delightful.

Try it and you'll like it! :) (who am I kidding? You'll probably love it.)

Less is much more

Simple living. It's been on my mind ever since I've met Ryan. At first, I was completly appalled at simple anything...but I'm having a change of heart.

I was recently reminded when I re-read a story in Oprah's magazine called: Back to Basics. The article goes in depth with 2 different families who have given up corporate jobs and left behind their 4,000 sq foot homes, expensive cars and designer clothes to pursue lives that are not consumer driven. They live in modest homes, grow their own food, buy clothes 2nd hand...or to put it more simply: simple living. They feel more human, more at peace and are more healthy and happier than they were prior to the switch. It is an inspiring article, one totally worthy of reading. Click here to read it.

Ryan has been bugging me about this kind of lifestyle ever since we've been together and I always made fun of him for wanting a simple life. We would argue about it all the time. He doesn't like TV, consumerism, wants to garden and have chickens and make our own bread...and all of that made me want to barf. I like watching TV (I've since learned that TV turns me into a lazy blob) and I also like shopping for groceries at the store, not my backyard. "That's flipping weird and I'm not doing it," was my usual response.

BUT, I think he may be on to suddenly appeals to me now. I don't want to be all extreme and throw everything I own away and live in some shack in the mountains (although that sounds kind of fun) but I do love the less is more philosophy. I want to see our kids running through fields of grass; I want to take a deep breath and smell clean air, not car emissions; I now love the thought of picking dinner from my garden; I don't want my family to be inundated with advertisements of things we don't need; I don't want to hear police sirens. SO many reasons why I love the idea of homesteading. I suppose it's all rainbows and unicorns in my mind, I know it would be darn hard to grow a garden, to care for animals, maintain a home...but I think the benefits outweigh the hard parts.

Call me weird. I like weird.

Awesome verse in Habakkuk that our pastor preached on this past Sunday.
Hab. 2:9-10. "Woe to him who builds his realm by unjust gain, to set his nest on high, to escape the clutches of ruin. You have plotted the ruin of many peoples, shaming your own house and forfeiting your life."

My take on that: God wants us to live for him, not our possessions. Greed only makes us MORE greedy...and ruins our chance at eternal life with Him in heaven. Our culture makes it almost impossible to escape greed. I get suckered into gadgets and clothes...thinking I need the hippest coolest things possible. I see a shiny device (camera, computer, iPod, cell phone) and I melt. I love little geeky techno things. I'm not saying those things are bad, they are not...and I happen to own all of them. It's the desire for more, the newer, better, bigger gadget; when what I have right in front of me is totally sufficient. That's my struggle with greed.

Another struggle: I happen to hate gardening. But I want to get over that....I like the idea of it, I just don't like the getting dirty and bugs part of it. (If anyone out there would like to give me gardening lessons, I'm game!)

I think I can overcome those things...or at least, I'm willing to give it a try. And I know God is more than willing to help.



I cannot stop thinking and praying about/for Africa. I suppose this is for several reasons.  

1: I've always been interested and curious about African culture.  I don't know if it has anything to do with my own heritage, but it's always been a place that I've wanted to learn more about.  As a kid, I was fascinated by it's wildlife.  As a teen, I became even more interested in the wildlife, particularly gorillas of the Congo and researched them quite extensively.  And in college I was fortunate enough to hear Jane Goodall speak.  (which was fantastic...I took notes. :))  I have also been extremely interested in their unique culture and their passion for life.  This passion seems to manifest in their music and dancing, the clothes they wear and is reflected in the beautiful smiles that fill their faces.  All of it fascinates me.

2: The children. Every 15 seconds, a child is orphaned because of HIV/AIDS.  There are over 50 million orphaned children in Africa. That speaks to my heart. Our church hosted a Ugandan children's choir this week and we were fortunate enough to house a few boys for a night.  Their stories left me speechless and filled my eyes with tears.  These children have all been orphaned but have come to the Watoto Children's Villages for a new family and a new life in Jesus Christ.  They know that there is no hope, no joy, no life outside of Him...and this is the message of their concert and the message they carry throughout the world.  It amazes me.  These kids come from very little but have this unfailing love that surrounds them, all because of our Father in heaven.  The concert was amazing; their spirit was infectious and their songs left me wanting to hear more and wanting to DO more.  I know that God has put it in my heart to open my family to an orphaned child, and someday we will.  Until then, we can sponsor one of the Watoto children and give them what they could not otherwise receive.  It was wonderful to share our house with other members of the body of Christ and encouraging to hear their testimonies.
You can be a blessing to these children by visiting:

3: Our church has adopted an un-reached (have never heard the Bible or Jesus) people group in Niger, Africa.  It is our goal as a church to send members over for short-term missions to help these people hear the message of the Gospel and come to know Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.  I have gone out on a limb and expressed my interest in going on one of these mission trips.  I know the Lord is speaking to my heart and He wants me to listen.  I'm putting in an application to be considered.  I'm praying for guidance and am asking that you pray along with me.  :)

Blessings on you and yours!


Vanity of Vanities

So this is totally frivolous but my eyebrows are stupid. Insightful, right? Thanks to my dad's side of the family my eyebrows are pretty much nonexistent which makes my face look incomplete. So what to do? I could draw them on, but then I look like an 80 year old woman or even better: a drag queen. I could just leave them as is, but that bothers me too. The one time I got my eyebrows waxed, I was told by the technician: "Eyebrows aren't twins, they're sisters." Whatever. Mine must be step-sisters because they're nothing alike. The left one is way higher than the right and the right is way longer than the left. To tweeze or not to tweeze? Hmmm. When I attempt to draw them on and brush them out I look like (no offense) I should be on a Mexican soap opera.

The words of Ecclesiastes 1:2 should help: "Vanity of vanities, all is vanity."

Without Jesus, life is vanity. I should be encouraged because I do know Him and strive to pursue righteousness. So my eyebrows are crooked and silly. Whatever. Jesus doesn't care so I shouldn't either. †