Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Refugee's Heart

"There is war everywhere, " the Somali woman mused.  She is right.  War is everywhere.

It was an exciting day yesterday.  Re:new opened its doors for the fall term, and I walked in the door on light feet, taking in the sea of colorful fabrics, the smiles of the other women and admiring the very cool things the women had sewn over the summer.  But as we settled into knitting class and the words started to flow, the talk turned to war.  "Do you know what has happened in Sudan?" a refugee student asked a teacher.   We waited for her to tell us because, of course, even if you know what's happened in Sudan, we were not there.  We could not know.  "I left because there is always war.  I did not want to take part in the war, so I had to leave."  The Somali woman nodded her head in agreement.  As the knitting needles lumbered along (yes, we're lumbering right now, not flying),  each woman gave us a small glimpse of their sweet hearts, hearts familiar with anguish and loss.

My heart is in anguish within me,
And the terrors of death have fallen upon me.
Fear and trembling come upon me,
And horror has overwhelmed me.
I said, "Oh, that I had wings like a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest.
Behold, I would wander far away,
I would lodge in the wilderness.
I would hasten to my place of refuge
From the stormy wind and tempest."
Psalms 55:4-8

Thursday, August 12, 2010

10 Months...Already?

My baby girl’s growing so fast, I can hardly keep up.  
10 months.  2 teeth.  A love for fuzz on the floor and fans on the ceiling.   Makes brothers laugh.  Eats anything (Oh, please, please, please can that last?).   Does not sleep in cars longer than 15 minutes.  Makes faces, the first one being her latest and favorite:

Army crawls.  Today found 2 Airsoft gun pellets, one pen, several pieces of not-sure-what, the dog's ear, and a baseball.  And that's with a clean house.

It's time for this mama to childproof.  *sigh*  Babies grow up way too fast.
Father, thank you for the gift of Gia.  She blesses us in so many ways and brings joy amidst sometimes rainy days.  Please help me to find all the Airsoft pellets before she does, really.   In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Almost a Teenager!

We celebrated Ethan's 12th birthday this week!  Where has the time gone?  He commented that in one more year he'll be a teenager and get the "crazies."  He said it with a mischievous grin.  Yikes.  I'd better get on my knees!
We started the morning with presents, first thing after rolling out of bed.  
Favorite thing:

William had to go to work, so the boys and I and little G went putt-putt golfing. Such a beautiful day.  A light breeze with sunshine: summertime perfection.  
Ethan loves Domo 77.  We went there last year for his birthday, and I cannot help but think about the stuff-that-was-to-come that we didn't know was coming.  But God did.  He knew everything, and every bump in the road, every hard, life-changing day was overarched with blessing.  Ethan will never forget being 11 years old.  But he is moving on to 12, that mischievous grin filled with the promise of life.

And tonight we celebrated his birthday at the Gryna's.  The kids had fun swimming, and we topped the night off with coconut cream pie.  Yum.

Happy Birthday, Ethan!!!  You are LOVED!!!

Thank you, Jesus, for my awesome son.  He is such a gift to us.  May you bless his year with a tender heart towards You, his Firm Foundation for the years to come.  Lead him by your truth and teach him, for you are the God who saves him.  All day long, may he put his hope in you (Psalm 25:5) In Your Name, Amen

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Flying Time

The past couple of weeks have raced by, reminding me that summertime is always a fleeting season, gone too soon.   We took some much-needed time away, although "away" was not very far.  Sometimes the best vacations are the ones closest to home, planned spur-of-the-moment, throwing duffel bags and dog bowls and diapers in the car and hoping you have all the essentials of life packed into the ever-shrinking mini-van.  Our first stop:  Egg Harbor, WI.

The hollyhocks here seemed really tall and robust.  They were everywhere.  
We pulled into the "resort" (according to the website) with excitement.    We opened the door of our room to find a tiny, almost RV-like room complete with a small kitchen and living area.  We took up every square inch.   But, yay, it was very clean and in a great location.  
William and I learned that our kids are a *little* spoiled and were expecting the Ritz.  "We're staying here?"  "Yes, we are!!!  Isn't it GREAT?"  We pasted smiles on our faces and secretly checked the cancellation policy.  There wasn't one.   Meanwhile, kids are starving all over the world and once again we are reminded that we have a long way to go in the sanctification department.  Holy Spirit, come!
Our friends were also in Egg Harbor, and we enjoyed beautiful sunsets from their gorgeous condo overlooking the water, with granite countertops, flat-screen TV, All-Clad cookware....I digress.

Little Gia experienced her first boat ride:

The boys spent a lot of time fishing:
Other favorite things about Door County:  Good Eggs (a great breakfast place), cherry pie, walking along the harbors, sweet family time with our friends and their four boys:

The latter part of the week was spent at grandma and grandpa's place on Lake Michigan:

We woke up to the sound of rain the first morning in Michigan, and my first thought was, ugh, not a rainy day!  Cloudy and dark, I pictured all of us inside, inside, and inside...all.day.long.   But the rain stopped and we were treated to the most beautiful morning.  Down on the beach, it was still, the water like glass.  The moody sky was all shades of blue and purple...peaceful.   quiet.  lovely.  My camera, of course, was upstairs, and I doubt it could have captured the moment fully.  The boys played in the water, and Gia and I took a walk along the shoreline.  It really was a magical moment, a gift straight from the Lord.

The Lord is my shepherd; 
I have all that I need. 
He lets me rest in green meadows; 
he leads me beside peaceful streams. 
He renews my strength. 
He guides me along right paths, 
bringing honor to his name. Psalm 23

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