You are Mine

Isaiah 43:1

Do not be afraid,
for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name;
You are mine.

What do you see when you read that verse?

Ransomed:  a consideration paid or demanded
for the release of someone or something from captivity

He paid to release ME from sin.

Name: a word or phrase that refers to or that can refer to a specific person
In other words: ME. He said my name.

Mine: that which belongs to me
I am HIS. He loves me enough to make me His.

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What do you hear and feel when you read this verse?
Love. Acceptance. Known. Embraced.
Washed white as snow.
My price has been paid.

And not just anyone, someone specific.
He called my name. Your name.
When someone says your name,
it means something to you,
you turn to look.
It’s special to hear your name called.

Today Jesus whispers your name and says,
“______, you are mine!
I called you. I redeemed you.
Do not fear, do not be afraid,
I will protect you, care for you and love you
because you are mine!”

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Be blessed today in knowing you are HIS.

The Beauty of Fall

What happened to Fall?
Wasn’t it just yesterday it was 65* out?
It was a blustery 25* this morning.
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We did have a beautiful Fall this year.
I wanted to stop all the time while I was driving to take photos.
Once upon a time I stopped so long I had a buggy catch up with me.

The kids love this time of the year too.
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Every year when it starts cooling off, they ask about a leaf pile.
Playing in the leaf pile is one of the top actives of Fall,
who care about the pretty leaves.
This year one even went out to play in it with her pajamas on.
I know, I know. We need help.
Madison was less the amused with their antics and hid
under her green “tarp” with the Little One.

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Little One hated the leaf pile.
Cried and fussed every time her feet hit the ground.
They solved the problem by putting her into this little wagon.
As long as the dog stayed away, all was well.

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The pajama girl got hot and went to change.
Madison was still trying to protect her hair at this point.
Mr D is in there trying to dig an igloo. Wrong season buddy.

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The long version of this would be called
“Tackle Madison and stuff leaves all over her.”
I think she gave up staying clean after this.

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2 little happies! Love to see them play together.

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When the igloo of leaves failed, he took up swimming in them.
This was a running dive with the dog bounding in behind.

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And they all yelled, “Happy Fall.”
This was only the first time blowing leaves.
It takes quite a few times here in the woods to collect them all.

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In the middle of this beauty is the spot we call home.
Our road, I know, such lovely patching they do here.

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When we pull into the lane, Little One starts saying, “Home, home.”

~~~~

My question of the day I have been pondering the last while.

Why do I want my prayers to be answered?

For my benefit?

Or to bring glory to God?

What are your thoughts?

A Family Weekend…

…and what a weekend it was.
Full of all things fun.
Laughing. Talking. Arguing.
A little crying by the babies.
Kids games. Kids yelling.
Lots of eating.
Did I mention talking?

As it goes in a family
there are siblings that have the same personalities,
and some so very opposite.
In our family, we 4 siblings are split, 2 and 2.
Get us all in public and 2 enjoy it,
visiting with people all night.
The other 2, enjoy themselves
but are a lot more reserved.
(I know you are all dieing to know which one I am. ha)

Now cram us all into a house for a long weekend,
along with the parents, our spouses
and our endless line up of kids,
we all talk, we’re all loud,
and we all have a jolly good time.
Almost makes me cry thinking about our fun together.
Ever feel like that about your family?
You love them so much it almost hurts!

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Tim’s and Mom came on Wed night already.
We wanted to make sure the weekend was long enough.
Mother promptly got started entertaining the grandkids.

Fam wkend (2)The little pirate who couldn’t play the game with the others
played his own game.

Fam wkend (3)We had one tree in the back yard that was dead and had the potential to hit the house if it fell. Thursday afternoon Eric and Tim gave it a bit of help falling in the right direction while the kids watched.

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Thanks to our overly zealous dog, nothing is safe outside.
The little lawn chair Madison is oversizing,
got his attention in a not so good way.

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I love to see her all bundled up, not that she loves it or anything.
Right now she is anti camera so looking passed me
was completely intentional.

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We worked and worked that afternoon to take this guy’s 3 year old pictures
with not a smile in sight! Now look at this, a few hours later.

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Dead tree be gone, warm us with your heat!

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Tys and Amanda and company of boys arrived Thursday evening.
Grandma read to the twins while we finished up the food.
They technically aren’t twins since he’s 6 months younger
but he’s a bit taller and probably a bit heavier then she is.

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We sent the kids to the basement to play since almost all the toys are down there. That didn’t stop them from dragging things up stairs to be with us and to make sure we could see their fights and settle them!

If you are counting, we are up to 7 adults and 9 kids here so far
with more coming the next day.

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In the middle of all of this,
Mr D had a birthday!
This year the girls decorated their own cake
and he was bound and determined to decorate his own too.
We traded in a cake for cupcakes and had a little
decorating party on Friday afternoon!
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Use your imagination for how this went.
We may have swept up as many sprinkles as actually stuck on the cupcakes.
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When they were done,
I suddenly had no desire for cupcakes.
Thankfully, there was a nice cake hidden that no one was going to spit upon when blowing out candles. That’s called 2 birds with 1 stone.

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This is a Christmas card winner because the small son is smiling.

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By Friday night we added 3 more adults and 3 more children to the mixture and we were nearly bursting at the seams but having a good time.
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Time for cake and ice cream for a birthday boy!
We haven’t been in this parenting game for 11 years for nothing.
I knew that 1 candle for 1 boy was not going to go over well,
so we pulled out candles and passed out cupcakes
and everyone had a jolly good time blowing out flames!
Lest you think the birthday boy was cheated,
notice that he has 3 cupcakes with candles in each.
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He looked forward to this for the longest time.
It’s not often you have a birthday on a weekend when all the cousins are here to help you celebrate all weekend long.

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opening gifts… wham. bam. and we’re done.
There was help from all sides.
The pieces flew and in no time it was all over!
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He was quite pleased with his loot.
I told him I’m saving our gift for his actual birthday (Sunday).
He was rather concerned that there would be no gift from us because
he knows that Mom did not go to Walmart without him anytime
and he knows there was no gift in the cart when he was along. :)
The miracle of the internet and plain brown boxes from UPS.

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Sat morning was more food and chaos.
The chaos was mainly organized
but how well can you keep the noise level down
and the kids all in line with that many people?
Plus it was colder then cold that weekend and the boys couldn’t go out.
Grandpa did usher them out for a bit
and made them run a few laps on the porch to get some energy released.
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Grandpa would lean back and squeeze her and she would squeal so he would sit up. If he didn’t lean back soon enough, she would reach up and pull him back again.

Saturday afternoon we left all the big kids with a very capable babysitter and went to the wedding. We felt a bit bad for her since we only took 3 babies but she claims all was well!

Now one thing you would think we all would have learned, growing up together and all,  is that you don’t pick on Tys, because whatever you do comes back 150%.
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I missed that life lesson I guess, because when an opportunity presented itself, I took it. I do claim this one as a victory because he did not accomplish what he set out to do to me!

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Sunday lunch brought more candle puffing since it was the actual birthday.
Little one loved it too.

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You can’t tell me you don’t eat all the frosting off the cupcake first.
We know you do in secret.
Now what I do in secret is scrape all the frosting off into a pile,
and then eat the cupcake and leave the frosting.
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The promised gift that he had been waiting and waiting for.
Unwrapping was much like a paper shredder,
hands reaching in from all sides
and in less then 2.5 seconds it was over.
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He thinks he has the world by the tail….
And all the mom can think of when she sees Lego’s
is stepping on them in the middle of the night.

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These 2 just go ’round and ’round.
Relentless arguing and teasing.

And when lunch was over, came the sad part.
They all packed up and went home.
Following a few tears, the kids dumped the Legos
and the Mother passed out in her bed.

What a weekend it was!

Good memories make for good dreams of the next time together.

Because We Can

Do you ever want to do things,
just because you can?
Just for fun.
For no reason but to amuse yourself or someone else.
You don’t need a reason.
You have today to do it, why not?

Your children are only this age once.
Enjoy them. Tomorrow they will roll their eyes at you!

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What did you do with them today
that they will remember later?

(anyone see the ball of bread dough?)

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Our amusement for today was sitting on the living room floor,
eating ice cream out of the bowl, sharing one spoon,
just because we wanted to.

(dough boy/ball is now a pancake)

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We propped up the camera, set the timer
then watched and counted the blinks while we ate.
Just because it was fun.

(dough boy pancake on the move)

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He got the biggest charge out of running to push the button
and hurrying back to watch it blink.

(dough boy holding still, afraid of being squashed again)

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And even funnier was when he pushed the button and we weren’t ready.
You should have heard him laugh.
It was a great 5 year old belly laugh!

(I heard the dough boy hoarsely whisper his fear of that thunder thigh)

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Next he wanted to hold the camera and push the button.
“Now Mom, just lean over a little bit so I can see you in the picture too.”

blog 11-5-14 (7)“Oh, I didn’t know I missed your head.”
And he laughed again.

(squashed dough boy is sneaking for the couch of safety)

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It was then he realized that all the time he’s been pushing the button,
Mom is eating ice cream and if he wants any
he better take it from her or there will be none left.

So was the end of the ice cream eating party.
Now my coffee is ready
while my bread bakes
and the house smells great.
just because i can.

Do something today, just because you can!

This Week and More

Of course on the day when I have 1000 things to do,
I have 100 blog ideas roaming around in my brain.
When I have a house full of company coming for the weekend,
starting today, I have no time to be sitting and writing,
yet here I sit.
I prefer to call it resting, but I think
it should be called procrastination at it’s best.

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(do you see the bug?)

What have we been up to?
Other then cleaning and cooking?
Cooking and cleaning.
Things never look bad on the surface,
but dig a little deeper in your house
and you find things that resemble Halloween.
It’s frightening, I tell you.

~~~~
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One night after supper while her family was otherwise occupied
she helped herself to the leftover cheese.

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And a few minutes after getting her away from the cheese,
she helped herself to the ranch dip!
Doesn’t she look a little guilty?

Most days I feel like I’m spinning my wheels with her.
If she isn’t ripping through the living room with an egg in her hand,
she’s hiding behind the couch playing with my phone.
The dog causes her much grief
and she thinks she is unable to go outside for even a minute
without being held.

The dog causes this mother much grief also.
Everything you can imagine gets chewed and drug across the lawn.
The cat who hasn’t been seen for a week made an appearance today
only to quickly be chased across the lawn with much yapping.

~~~~~
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Fall popped in for a little visit and then was soon gone.
As short as it was, we appreciated the little visit it gave us.
It is quite ugly and looking wintery around here compared to this
a few weeks ago.

~~~
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Remember awhile ago this Mother mentioned spell check
being one of her best friends.
Guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
I figured out #4 and #8 but I’m not sure about #6.
Too bad they don’t have spell check in their school books.

~~~~
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We hit up the bike path the other night.
This particular one is a favorite because of the train parked along side it.
We met some family there and then
stopped at their place for popcorn and apples on the way home.
Good times!

~~~~
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Once upon a time
the lady of this house saw an empty spot on her wall
and decided a few shelves would look nice.
In her mind it was easy peasy.
Buy the stuff, slap it up.
Or rather, kindly ask Mr Husband to slap it up.

An important little fact she forgot was that Mr Husband
doesn’t slap anything up.
He measures, straightens, makes the boards,
paints them, and then checks into the walls and studs.
Finding things were not in the proper place after he started,
he waits a day, stops at Lowes for more items
and proceeds to spend mucho time
“doing it right.”

She putters here and there while he works,
feeling kind of bad that he’s spending so much time
on a Sat doing this for her.
But he keeps working without complaining.

Once it was done, she slapped a few things up,
in her usual style and called it good.

A few days later he mentioned
that these shelves might be blog worthy
and she told him she will, as soon as she gets time!
And so here it is, and she’s likes it muchly.

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If you want nice shelves, just ask! :)

~~~
It seems the nephews that are coming rarely travel,
since they asked their mom where they will sleep
and if they can shower when they stay here.

And to the sisters of that Mom,
things will probably be a little less then calm, cool and collected
around here this weekend.
Excitement is running high at the prospect of family company
and the dog just came in the house through the door
that was left standing wide open.
What a weekend it will be.
Don’t you wish you were our family?

“Get to” Moments

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I saw this the other morning,
and I didn’t even read the post that went with it
because my mind was stuck on this!

“Get to” not “have to.”

Think of little things that are mundane, something we do every day,
all the time, routine, over and over, things we HAVE to do.
We shouldn’t call them a drudgery,
but sometimes we get in a rut of groaning
and it just gets so wearying to do it all again.

But what if we would see these things for the blessings they are.
We get to do them.
We are blessed to be able to do them.
Call it the privilege it is.
Why do I complain when it’s something to be grateful for,
something others wish they had?

I get to do those dishes again.
I am blessed with a family to feed and plenty of food to do so.

Picking up after the kids.
It means they are having fun, enjoying life, able to run.

One more load of dirty laundry.
We have clothes to wear. end of story!

Cooking yet another meal.
I get to!!
It means I have a husband and kids who are healthy and want to eat.

Getting up at 6am on a Saturday with Little One when all I want to do is sleep.
I have a daughter, one who enjoys mornings more then I, but I have a daughter.
What more do I need to say?

Packing lunches. one more day.
My kids are privileged to attend a Christian day school!
(and I don’t have to home school)

The list is endless.
Blessings that we want to grumble about.
Things we call mundane.
Privileges we take for granted.

Think “I get to” instead of “I have to” next time you want to groan.
I tried to put that into practice the last while,
especially when I was doing tasks that are less the pleasant.
I “get to” do this!

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After thinking about this for awhile,
I mentioned it when our church ladies were together the other night.
One of the others said something else I’ve been pondering since
that kind of goes along with this.

What about all those things we call little.
Little jobs, little tasks, mundane things we do,
thinking that we are doing little things,
waiting for God to ask us to do something great.
“Here I am,” we think, “being faithful in the little things,
waiting, waiting on something big!”

But if they aren’t really as little as we think?
Could these “little things” actually be big things?
A hug for your child.
A card for a friend.
Another meal for your family.
One more load of laundry.

These things we are doing that we call little,
they are actually something great, something big.
It means something for the one you do it for!

Why wait for the next thing we think will be great?
Why not realize these “get to” moments for the blessings they are
and love doing them instead of complaining.

Don’t wait for tomorrow, next week or next year,
for things you call great!
You are doing great things right here, right now.
Relish in your “get to” moments,
don’t dread them.

Now give me some examples of “get to” moments for you!