Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Well, that leftover bag of Valentine's chocolate...

may just be the thing that hindered me last night from following my new efforts in eating. Well, it's gone now - so no worries there! LOL

I have a new eating rule for myself - no eating after everyone has gone to bed. Seems simple, huh? Well, we'll see how it goes. It will work if I make it work.

I am really enjoying this new Bible study book from Donna Partow. Tonight's lesson was about quarreling with our Maker - trying to do things our own way. The big thing I took away from the lesson was that staying close to God is the easiest way to be shaped into what He wants me to be.

I took a walk last night before dinner - it was cool enough for a jacket. It was a nice short walk and I walked at the bottom of our steps and listened to the run-off stream flowing over rocks. It was a nice sound. I'll take a picture sometime and post it. It only flows strong after rain or snow is melting.

I could walk tonight but it's dark out. I had a cup of tea while I did my devotions and I am filled up - inside my tummy and in my heart.

Are you filled tonight?

Monday, February 26, 2007

What hinders you?

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entagles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the auther and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
Hebrews 12: 1, 2

This was one of the verses that our preacher used in his sermon yesterday. His emphasis was that not everything that hinders us from fully serving God is wrong - it just hinders us from fully serving. So then, I had to ask myself: what hinders me from doing what God wants me to do? I made a list!
  • lack of energy
  • lack of enthusiasm
  • laziness
  • too much time on the computer
  • too much time on the computer
  • too much... (okay, you get the idea)
When I look at the time I spend on the computer, I mostly spend it in a forum related to one of my hobbies - geocaching. I enjoy commenting and posting and interacting with other people. It's because I am so motivated by other people's approval. WANTING OTHER PEOPLE'S APPROVAL is standing in the way of doing what I need to do.

The lack of energy, enthusiasm and general laziness can be traced easily to two things: not eating right and not getting enough exercise. I have ignored my Type 2 Diabetes now for over a year - and it's showing in more ways than one.

So, I need to throw off the things that are hindering me and throw off the sin that entangles me. It's time to take some action steps:
  1. less time on the computer - I really think the blogging thing is good for me. I will limit my visit to the forum to ONE time a day.
  2. eating better - I went and bought some veggies today and I'm going to start eating by the quarters on my plate (I'm sure there's a better label for it:) one-fourth of the plate protein, one-fourth starch, and two-fourths (yes, one-half for you mathematicians) vegetables.
  3. exercising - uggggggggg - I think I'm going to make myself start walking at school again, a couple of times around the gym. I need to do this. At home, I need to walk up and down the streets here, once around to begin with.
Well, that's my plan. If I keep my eyes fixed on Jesus and remember that following Him is a joy, I will want to honor Him by taking care of myself.

So, what hinders you?

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Fluffy Flakes

We woke this morning to very fluffy snow falling from the sky.

After debating for about a half an hour, we decided to go to church. The drive was a little troublesome on the snow/slush covered roads, but we made it. We had a total of 6 inches. There may be a little more moving in this evening. This was a wet gloppy snow, good for snowballs that we threw at each other after getting home from church.

No church this evening, so we're hanging here at home.

How was your day?

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Saturday Night

Wow - what a weekend! We had an overnighter at the church Friday night - Saturday morning. We had 13 kids from kindergarten to fifth grade. We had a good time and five of them even stayed up all night. I napped for about two hours while sitting with the group of kids who fell asleep during Veggie Tale's "Jonah."

And today, I went to school and watched while one of my students was baptized. It has been such a blessing to watch this 14 year old girl learn more about Jesus and decide to give her life to Him! I will enjoy watching her grow. I was 13 years old when I was baptized. I remember the joy of knowing my sins were forgiven. It's hard, sometimes, to recapture that joy. But I'm working on it.

For my thousands of fans out there who don't know - I teach at a private Christian school that is actually a ministry of a church here in town. So school is church and church is school and it all gets confusing at times! LOL

We actually attend a church in West Virginia (about a 25 minute drive north from here.) We started going up there because I interpret on Sunday mornings.

I gave the scarf I made to my friend at church. She really liked it. I also made this pink hat last week. I gave it to one of my students at school. She liked it.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


On the way home from church tonight, I hit a kitty. I tried to find the owner, but no one knew. I got a box and put him in it to move him to the side of the road.

I am sad. :(

Monday, February 19, 2007


For the past year, I have been struggling with my relationship health. You know how it is - we all have our roles in life: mother, wife, coworker, teacher. I tend to want to make others happy and fix problems. And that, as most of us know, can wear you down and break your spirit.

I had a good friend here in the town in Virginia when I moved here 13 years ago. Through circumstances beyond my control, I lost that friendship about 7 years ago. Recently, I’ve found myself wondering why I haven’t let anyone get close, why I didn’t have any friends nearby. It’s not that I’ve been doubting: “Why doesn’t anyone like me?” It’s been more of, “Why am I not willing to put the time aside to develop a friendship?”

I am sitting in tears typing this because my friend Shelina has taken me back to a time when that’s what it was about - spending time together and enjoying each other. Why do we let life dictate so much of who we are and what we do?

I am so thankful for my renewed relationship with Shelina and her gracious words that have touched my heart. To steal a line from Star Trek and address it to Shelina: “I have been and always shall be your friend.” Thank you for your friendship.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

So, it was Shelina who got me into this blogging thing and she's always showing her works in progress and her finished stuff (I love the Valentine quilt.)

Well, I liked the pretty colors on these quilting sites I've seen - BUT - I'm not a quilter. I crochet. So I went out and bought pretty yarn. Thanks for enticing me to spend money, people!

I wish I knew better how to line up the pictures in the blogs, but I will put some pictures in to show what I bought yesterday. (P.S. I learned how - more or less.)

I bought this LionBrand homespun yarn, a beautiful aqua and a purpley/maroon color. I'm going to make a couple of scarves out of it, I think. Pictured are the skeins of yarn and one scarf in progress.

The other yarn is a fun one I bought. I didn't know why I bought it, I just did. (There's the label now - it is Fancy Fur by Lion Brand.) Any way, I started playing with it and a big crochet hook (naw - I don't know what size - it's big, okay?) Well, it wanted to be a scarf too, so I made it and I love it! I'm going to give it to one of the teenagers at church who has been helping me interpret some songs on Sunday mornings.

And so, since I had the camera, a picture of Morris. He's a fun cat.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Driving Lessons for Whom?

Okay, it was time to take D out on the road to get a little feel for driving on snow and ice. Our driveway and road are gravel so he drove out on them, practicing braking and feeling what happens when the tires start spinning. Going very slow, did fine.

The main roads are clear so the trip to the gas station to pick up a newspaper and diet Coke went fine. On the way back, I made D drive down a side road to get some more practice on the snowy roads. Then he pulled into a driveway to turn around.

Now, I know what you're thinking: "Bet he got stuck in the driveway. I bet even Carol tried to get it out and it wouldn't come because it was stuck, spinning..."

Oh, come on! Do you think I would let something like that happen?

Okay, it did. So here I am blocking SOMEONE ELSE'S driveway and can't get out.

Friendly mail carrier with chains to lay on the ground and a push by the man in the driveway helped us get out. By this time, I was in the driver's seat and no one knew it had been D driving.
And D - to his credit - did not once say, loudly, "Gee, MOM! Thanks a lot for the driving lesson. This lesson was how to get stuck in the snow. When's the lesson on how to get out - next week?"

He said he thought it but didn't say it. The kid's learning some self control. LOL

Interesting little trip.

Friday, February 16, 2007

The Quiet of the Evening

Okay, it's not really quiet around here. But J is studying Bible Bowl, R is working on tax papers, and D is chatting to a GIRL on the phone. (Yes, a girl - don't panic.)

I got most of the stuff done today for a creative writing festival at school. I HATE taking care of something new - there's always something you forget to do or somehow you mess up. Oh well, it will be better next year if they let me do it again!

Most everyone around here in the city has broken out of the ice. Some people have taken chainsaws and pick axes to their ice blocks. I was very thankful to have R around to do the dirty work for me! :)

Our kid overnighter at the church had to be rescheduled. The parking lot was still covered with ice. Our theme was "Beach Blast," so it would have been fun in all this winter weather. We might do it next weekend.

Not much else to say today. I'm going to look to see if I can find some bulk eyelash yarn on the internet. I love the scarves that I can make from that. It doesn't take long to crochet them.

I wish it were warmer or at least not so much snow. I wanted to go geocaching this weekend. Oh well!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day

We awoke this morning to ice on the snow, but thankfully not on the trees. My hubby printed out a card for me on the computer and a banner. I'm baking cakes and brownies right now to keep the males happy for the rest of the day. I even made pancakes this morning. Wow.

As I'm posting this blog, I'm talking to my sister on yahoo messenger. She just shared some pictures with me. I think this one is cute. The little girl is my sister's neighborhood buddy who came on our New Year's vacation with us at Burr Oak State Park in Ohio. The other kid is my J, who is ABSOLUTELY thrilled with decorating cupcakes with the youngster! LOL

My hubby has now broke his car free from the ice and snow. Life is getting back to normal (whatever that is.)

Hope you all are staying safe and warm!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

A Snowy Day

Well, we had today off of school and we all sat around the house and pretty much did nothing all day. The boys tried to go sledding this morning with dad, but they were the first ones in the park and the snow wasn't packed down yet.

Tonight and tomorrow is supposed to bring freezing rain and ice - so hopefully we don't lose our power.

We played "Imaginiff" tonight - a fun family game.

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day - I plan on baking some brownies and cakes for everyone. We'll have to see if we can get off to church or not tomorrow evening.

They've already called school off for tomorrow. So I guess we'll be sleeping in. R took two vacation days, so he'll be here tomorrow with us too.

Sooooooo, how was your day?

Monday, February 12, 2007


Waiting for the phone call to cancel school. It probably won't come until tomorrow morning. We are supposed to get a nice wintry mix of snow/sleet/freezing rain/ice starting somtime around 1:00 AM. Meanwhile, I'm catching up on some reading here online, and posting - of course.

Tonight was our ladies' Bible study. We go to Books a Million and invade their coffee shop for an hour (or hour and a half.) We are doing a study on "Becoming a Vessel God can Use." Tonight we did the week one study and the thing that struck me most was "not doing great things for God" but letting God use you to do great things. The first way we are using our own vision and strength to accomplish what WE THINK God wants us to do. The second way, we are open to HIS leading and limited by nothing - with His power behind us.

Ephesians 3:20, 21
"Now to Him Who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to HIS POWER that is at work IN US, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen!"

I really am enjoying our discussions!

On a fun note, I bought some eyelash yarn and made a little scarf for my coworker's little girl. I really should have taken a picture of it. It was lilac and very pretty. She came over to show it to me before they left for home. She gave me some of her colored school pictures to thank me. So cute!

Well, that should keep you satisfied until tomorrow.


Friday, February 9, 2007

Prejudice, Christianity, Muslims, and other isms...

I read tonight a post that my friend Shelina made over in her blog Shelina's Creations.

Her topic was community and how Muslims are percieved in the United States and around the world. It made for very interesting reading and reflection.

I am a teacher in a private Christian school. I am a baptized, born-again Christian who many people would label as a "fundamentalist." I believe the Bible is the inspired word of God and I believe that Jesus is the only way to God.


As I said, I am a Christian teacher. I am amazed to hear the prejudicial comments that come out of some of my students' mouths when we discuss other religions and ethnic groups. Oh, it is never: "Hey, let's go kill the ____, they're all stupid!" No, the comments are much more subtle than that: remarks about "the Mexicans" (immigrants to our area who have come to pick apples and often stay on and have developed a strong community in town,) or "the Muslims - they're all wacko!"

My students seemed surprised when I share with them that one of my best friends is Muslim. It is then that some of the most important lessons of the Bible and the constitution are learned (I'm teaching American history this year.)

I may not agree with someone's religious beliefs and, because I believe Jesus is the only way to heaven, I can mourn because I feel their souls may be lost. That, however, does not give me the right to condemn, ridicule or harass a certain group of people, be they Muslims, Buddhists or other religions. Christianity is not necessarily a religion of "tolerance" (in other words - I have to ACCEPT everything you believe) but it is, at the heart a religion of love.

How can we reach out to people if we paint them with the brushstrokes of prejudice and write them off before we even build relationships? How can you label a group of people as one certain way? I know - it's done all the time. It doesn't make it right.

I make sure my students understand that much evil has been done in the name of "Christianity" as well - people often use the name of Jesus as a shield for bigotry and hatred. This is not the way of Christ.

And - hello, kids!! We live in America! People DO have the right to their religion - including the public school children who may bow their heads and pray. I am glad I work in a place where I won't get into trouble when I lead my class in prayer or pray with a student who is hurting or in trouble. But BECAUSE WE LIVE IN AMERICA, we have those rights.

Yes, I know, there is a fine line between rights and caution. But if we can become a community and understand who it is standing on the sidewalk, who it is over the fence in the next yard, when we are no longer afraid to reach out a hand of fellowship to our neighbors - then we will have defeated the terrorists who would like nothing more to see an America divided.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Wasting Time Worrying

You know, worry never does anything positive. It is energy that could better be expended elsewhere.

It has been a while since I've had that paranoid, "Now what I have done wrong?" feeling. That feeling used to haunt my decisions, especially at school, and it was not a happy time.

Yesterday was the first time I've really felt that in a while. I prayed about it - and it helped.

Philippians 6: 4-8
4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

God's word is so plain here. When our minds are set on the positive things, when we are dwelling on the blessings we have from Him and trust Him to take care of our needs, He's there. He's always there.

And even if this parent meeting had turned out to be something really bad, God would take care of me. Ya think I would have learned that by now!

The parent came and talked to me briefly today. Everything is basically fine; nothing I've done wrong.

Energy wasted - when all else fails, read the instructions!

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Snowy Wednesday

Finally, a day off school! During the school hours of the day, I did nothing but play around on the computer and read a book. And so I had to stay home from church tonight to do midterm grades. I just have to write them up now.

The snow was pretty, but it's all gone off the roads now. 2 1/2 inches don't last very long.

I feel very panic-y because a parent of one of my students at school wants to meet with me and the principal on Monday. Makes me feel uneasy - I'm sure there's something I've left undone. Oh well, I just need to give it to the Lord. Once I get back to work tomorrow and the busy-ness of everyday life, I probably will forget about it until Monday. We'll see...

That's it for tonight...

Monday, February 5, 2007

Monday Musings

Bible study was good tonight. A group of women get together at Books a Million. We're starting a new book called: Becoming a Vessel God can Use - or something to that effect. Next week, we're suppposed to bring a vessel that represents us. Ohhhhhhh, I just figured out what I'll bring: a diet Coke bottle! LOL Or a cracked pot of some kind.

Today was a day of attitude adjustment. I am trying hard to make myself have a positive attitude about everything that is going on in my life. I know it's a matter of choice and it's between God and me. So, today was a marvelous Monday! :)

Shelina got on me about not posting any pics of D or R. So, here's a picture of R baptizing J last November. And the other is a picture of D taken in Cincinnati sometime last spring. I rather think all of my men are handsome.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

Sunday Evening Thoughts

Hello there, blogger friends!

My lesson plans are finished and ALMOST all of my grading. Unfortunately, it meant me missing church tonight. I've just got to get my act together. But I'm glad I'm almost finished and I can sit here and make a post without feeling too guilty.

The boys are playing on the laptop and R is watching the big game. So it's relatively quiet.

A picture to share: J had his concert at school on Friday and did a good job. He is sounding more and more like he knows what he is doing. I think he's going to stick with the saxaphone for next year as well. He is very musical.

Alright, I need to go finish my work.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

It's Saturday - Yeah!!

Well, the school week is over, at least until I do about 5 hours of paperwork tomorrow. Try as I might, I cannot make myself stay at school and do planning/grading on Fridays! I am really behind on the grading thing. I'll probably do it instead of watch the Super Bowl.

J is at his Bible Bowl competition. If you don't know what that is, kids study certain portions of the scripture and then teams from churches get together and compete with questions over the sections. J's team doesn't do too well in the games, but he always does well on the individual test. He usually gets first or second place out of 20 or so kids.

D isn't feel well, but he'll get over it. He's planning on checking into jobs tomorrow. The boy's gotta work!

I wanted to go geocaching today, but R is working on his car. Something is happening with the exhaust. But I think he has it under control and I might be able to go find one later this afternoon at the arboretum.

No big news, sorry to say. Just another day in the life of Momma Marauder.