GOD's my island hideaway, keeps danger far from the shore,
throws garlands of hosannas around my neck.
(Psa 32:7 MSG)


simple joys

first, let me wish everyone a very happy earth day!

shana has a really great post on her blog today so i'll let you read what she has to say about living the green life! i'm really feeling challenged about this today. i guess it's time to make some changes! for starters, i plan to use reusable grocery bags as often as i can for my groceries from now on. i even have a couple already. now to just take 'em with me when i shop. i'd like our family to be a lot better about recyclables too. {there was a time in my life when recycling was the norm. but here recycling isn't mandatory, so we don't. it's sad, but true. i know we could if we just put a little effort into it! we'll have to figure out the HOW, but i know there's got to be some people who recycle around here!}

T got home safe this afternoon. i'm so glad! and even though he's super tired, T took bubba in for awanas tonight and is at work until he picks him up at 8pm. life is already getting back to normal!

after eating out at DQ this evening, cj did not want to come in the house. but it was just a tad too cold for me to stay out and let him play outside. so when he finally decided he didn't like being outside alone {about 3 seconds!}, he came in. but was very sad. so after T left with bubba, i did something special for him. i blew bubbles in the house! *gasp!*

cj had so much fun even though he had to be inside! i'm so glad that grandma patty gave him that little bottle of bubbles in his Easter basket! of course, after about 20 minutes i was feeling quite lightheaded so we had to quit. for now! gonna have to remember this when i need something fun to do inside next winter!

i'm so glad...

...that my husband's coming home today!

whoop! whoop!


when daddy's away...

...the kids and mom play!

well. a little. mostly we've just been wasting time until daddy gets home and life can go back to normal.

T had to go out of town for a few days for some work-related classes. i've been missing him so much! and so have the boys! we've gotten absolutely nothing school-wise done this week yet, although we have worked on sections for Awanas since tomorrow night is the last chance bubba has to finish his book for this year. we're hoping he'll get it done so next week at awards night, he'll get the 1st book award for T&T boys! exciting, i know!

i've spent WAY too much time on the computer. it's hard not having T here to talk to and to tell me to turn off the evil-devil machine (i.e computer)! so i've been wasting my time away on facebook and blogging and who knows what else.

actually, we did do something a little fun today that got us out of the house for a bit. i took the boys out to lunch at a local mom-and-pop style diner. bubba had today's special--potato dumplings with bacon and toast. cj ate a few goldfish crackers i had in my bag {he's just impossible at meals lately!} and i had a grilled chicken sandwich. afterward, we spent a little time at the library. the boys played on the kids' computer for a little bit and i had a chance to look around at all the books. i even found a couple books for my hubby on the book sale {library fundraiser} that should be a nice surprise for him when he gets home. after i paid for those 2 books and checked out the 3 other books i wanted, bubba had a little fit because he didn't have any books picked out and i wasn't waiting to let him find some {i'm such a mean mommy, but he HAD been given many warnings that i was getting ready to go!} then we headed to the grocery store to buy milk & nutrigrain breakfast bars for cj and ended up finding all sorts of other foods we "needed" including some mango ice cream which i'm gonna try when i'm done posting this.

after cj woke up from his nap this afternoon, he was quite sad. poor baby! you should have heard it! {or maybe you did? my apologies if he disturbed your peace and quiet!} i think it was part hunger--remember he wouldn't eat much at lunch--and part missing daddy. so after getting him to eat a little cheese and a breakfast bar and he was still in near hysterics, we called daddy so cj could talk to him. it seemed to help him just being able to know daddy's okay. and so cj doesn't wake up in the middle of the night tonight hungry, i'm gonna give him a snack before bed.

well, right now, the boys are just finishing playing computer games on our older computer...Dr Seuss's ABC cd-rom is one of cj's faves already. he loves the book and i think the game makes it that much more fun to learn! next on our schedule: finish watching 101 dalmations that they started last night and eating that afore-mentioned snack!

another quote, another thought...

Time and experience have taught me a priceless lesson: Any child you take for your own becomes your own if you give of yourself to that child. I have born two children and had seven others by adoption, and they are all my children, equally beloved and precious.
-Dale Evans

i love hearing about other families who have adopted. each story is uniquely special.

God is so good to bring families together like this! and i'm so thankful that because of His love for each of us, He adopts us into His family as His children when we accept His gift of grace.

the language of adoption

Natural Child: Any child who is not artificial.
Real Parent: Any parent who is not imaginary.

Your Own Child: Any child who is not someone else's child.

Adopted Child: A natural child, with a real parent, who is all my own.

~Rita Laws, PhD.

i like looking for good quotes. this one struck my fancy as it is about adoption and really makes a statement about the language we use about adoption. in my adoption experience, i have learned that the language of adoption is slowly changing: most birth parents don't "give up" their babies. rather, they make an adoption plan for their child. adoptive parents are just as much the child's real parents as are the child's birth parents. biological children are children who share your genetic code. so in my case, i might say that i have a biological son who is 9 and an adopted son who is 2. of course, both boys are 100% MINE (or rather, to be fair, ours since my husband is very much a part of this family!)

here's an adoption creed i really love because it also tells how i feel:

not flesh of my flesh
nor bone of my bone,
but still miraculously my own.
never forget for a single minute,
that you grew not under my heart,
but in it.

being both a bio mom and an adoptive mom is such a joy and a privilege. in many ways i know i'm blessed to have "the best of both worlds" so to speak. and i'm so thankful for both my boys. it matters not a bit to me that i only birthed one of them. when our youngest was about 3 months old, i had a friend from church ask me if i felt the same toward him as my eldest. i knew what she wanted to know was if i loved my new baby as much as i loved his big brother when he was a baby. i think she was also curious as to how it feels to be an adoptive mom. my answer was and still is "there are days i seriously forget i didn't give birth to him!" it's true! that's how i love him...it makes no difference how he came to be part of our family. yes, he has a birth family and some day he might even get to know them too.

but this fact remains regardless: he is and always will be my son.


my grown-up art

"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up." ~Pablo Picasso
this quote speaks to me personally because it has been really hard for me as a grown-up, a wife, a mother, and a home-school teacher, to do art like i did when i was in college. i was sort of late in discovering my artistic side and it wasn't until i took my first ceramics course my freshman year of college that i started to see that not only is art fun, but i have some natural ability as well. after that, my college path took a slight turn. i found that i had a love for ceramics--turning clay into pottery gave me a sense of expectancy as well as a creative outlet. i liked painting and drawing. and i enjoyed learning about the history of art. by graduation (after 4 years), i had enough art credits to afford an art minor. i even considered taking another year to complete my art major, but quickly decided i was happy to be done with formal education and i really didn't want to add more to my student loans!

alas! these days i don't have the equipment necessary for making pottery or the time and energy to try and create beautiful paintings! i think that's, in part, why i've enjoyed knitting so much. knitting (and crochet) gives me a means of being creative. through it, i can express myself artistically. and it doesn't interfere with my day-to-day life very much. {except, of course when i'm so close to the end of a project that i just CAN'T put it down till it's done!} i use color, texture, and pattern to make something pretty and useful--and we all know the best art is art you can use! *wink*

socks are wonderful projects. they're relatively small, don't use a ton of yarn and you can practice or learn new techniques depending on the pattern you choose! i've learned a technique for making both socks at the same time on one long circular needle from a book called 2-at-a-time Socks by melissa morgan-oakes. i've found it a valuable resource since i love knitting socks, but typically have disliked finishing one sock and then having to start all over for sock #2. so, for me, this is definitely the way to knit socks!

to make a pair of socks, first, i must have yarn. i love sock yarns! and there are so many to choose from! {this can be both good and bad!} usually, i have to consider how much i can afford to spend and that will help narrow my choices a tad. so once a yarn is decided on (and shopping for yarn is half the fun!), then i get to choose a pattern. here's where it gets a little tricky for me...gauge. i currently only have 1 long circ for knitting socks. this means, for now at least, i can't just change needle size so my gauge will match the pattern's gauge. sometimes i'll knit a swatch first and try to find a pattern that has the same gauge as mine. sometimes i'll pick a pattern, then knit my swatch and try using math to adjust my stitches for it to work. sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. but that's okay, because i'm doing something i love. for example, the socks i've got on my needles right now were a real trial. i picked a pattern that i thought would look nice and decided to change the cuff from a rolled to a ribbed one. it was working fine, but after a few inched of knitting, i could tell that it was going to be a tad too small. so, i frogged it (which is knitterly talk for ripping out every stitch of a project). attempt #2 ended up too large. at this point i decided that it was the pattern, so tried a different one. got a few inches into it and decided it looked awful. finally, i realized that a plain, no-frills sock was what the yarn was telling me. yes, just like paint, yarn speaks to the artist! it's crazy, but true!

just for fun...

...i started a new blog.

for all those "deep thoughts" that i have. ;-)

so, in case you're interested, clicking here will take you to it.

i think, therefore i am. ~descartes

yes, i'm afraid it's true. my mind feels pretty full these days. yet i still have an innate desire to continue learning. to try something new. or to think hard and deep about something--anything.

life. the universe. everything.
Creation. God. mankind.

sometimes i think if i don't keep learning, my brain will turn to mush.

so i knit. i crochet. i read.

i learn.


pretty as a picture

as i mentioned a few days ago, i really enjoyed the time we had on the beautiful island of maui last year (march 2008). so i thought i'd share a few random photos we captured with our camera while we were there. don't be too surprised if i do this again since we have about 500 pics from that trip!


11 years!

11 years ago today, on a lovely saturday afternoon, i married my best friend {and the most wonderful guy in the world--if you ask me!!} we've had a good mix of lots of laughter as well as a few tears over these past 11 years and i hope and pray that God sees fit to give us many more years of life together. i'm so thankful that He has blessed me with a hard-working, fun-loving, good-cooking, and family-oriented husband and i certainly wouldn't trade him for the world! [happy anniversary, sweetheart!]

yesterday's lunch with mom and dad was really nice. the food turned out good too! i was going to take some pics, but got so busy that i forgot. oh well! you'll just have to take my word for it that it was delicious! next time i make macadamia nut encrusted chicken, i think i'll try the other recipe i found. although the one i used was yummy, i'd like to try it with a little coconut added to the nut mixture. a little sweetness might make it just that much yummier!


i love certain foods...

therefore i have to learn how to cook them!

tonight's recipe search: macadamia nut encrusted chicken breasts

reason: am having a crazy craving for the yummy foods i ate when in hawaii last year {oh, maui, how i miss you!}

result: will post tomorrow and let you all know!!!

here's the deal: i'm going to try making a special meal for tomorrow's lunch. my mom and dad are coming over to watch the boys while i get to go in for my not-so-annual doctor's visit. [i seriously can't remember the last time i went in for a check up--it's been that long ago!!] so i invited them to come for lunch and i plan to make a really nice meal for them. also on the menu: tomato and basil bruschetta, spring mix salad, and a zucchini saute.


Happy Easter!

This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn't go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person's failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him. "This is the crisis we're in: God-light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness. They went for the darkness because they were not really interested in pleasing God. Everyone who makes a practice of doing evil, addicted to denial and illusion, hates God-light and won't come near it, fearing a painful exposure. But anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes God-light so the work can be seen for the God-work it is.
(John 3:16-21 MSG)
Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift. 2Co 9:15

He is risen!

He is risen indeed!

He is risen!

He is risen indeed!

He is risen!

He is risen indeed!


The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky proclaims the work of His hands. Psalm 19:1

do you like learning about the stars, planets, and space? i do! a couple years ago we bought a really nice telescope...got a good price and splurged so we could study the planets and stars as part of our home-schooling. only one prob. the mechanism that turns the scope (and automatically points to the star or planet you want to look at) doesn't work. never has. so, except for the 2 or 3 times we took it out and used it manually, the poor thing has been severely neglected. such a waste. but there's still time...to fix it and yes, even use it!

anyways, the 4th Day Alliance is doing a membership drive this year. as a christian, home-school mom, i've found 4th Day Alliance to be a wonderful astronomy resource and i've already appreciated times when they've sent emails to tell when interesting things are happening in the night sky.

from their website:
As you all know, 2009 is the International Year of Astronomy, evolutionists are doing all they can to inculcate the world with their false science, and they are using astronomy as a means to do it. We'd like to counter their efforts as best possible. So, we are asking you to help us with a membership drive.

Membership in the 4th Day Alliance will now be FREE for everyone who signs up in 2009. Members enjoy a host of additional benefits including access to our Members Only
section of our website. To help generate some excitement, we are going to be giving away the following items in a random drawing on April 30th, 2009.
so, if you are interested, you can become a member too! just click here and sign up!