Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

I have been inspired… inspired to action.

I needed to go grocery shopping today but struggled with spending the money, again. I just went on Thursday and dispite my best efforts among the busy transitioning our life is in right now, spent more than I had wanted. {Sigh} So, as I reached for lunch behind all of this in my pantry cabinet…..

{Isn’t that pretty?}

…I thought surely I could create meals from the abundance of food that already fills my kitchen, a mini grocery store?

So I took inventory and found 5 decent meals to feed my family. Enough to last till Friday, my grocery shopping day. Whew, that’s better.

I used allrecipes to find some recipes using the ingredients I had on hand {suggested by a friend} and then plugged in those plus some others into our menu plan for the rest of the month. Here is our menu plan for this week…

Monday: DIY Tostada with Mexican Rice
Tuesday: Tortilla Bean Soup with Chicken
Wednesday: Enchildada-Quesidillas {made with homemade tortillas} with more Mexican Rice!
Thursday: Chicken and Rice, sweet peas, and buttered homemade bread
Friday: Sea Shell Supper, salad, and bread
Saturday: Homemade Pizza and salad
Sunday: Leftovers

I have high hopes of changing our eating habits, in being more intentional in feeding my family. Looking forward to researching. Until next time…


Read Full Post »

The new year brings with it HOPE, hope of a future and of a renewed faith.

new slate, a fresh page. I think this calls for a new journal, don’t you think?

Not a new slate just because it is a new year, for His mercies are new every morning, not just every year. The new year is just a reminder that we are given a chance to start over. Grace for a new year.

None of us know what awaits us in this new year, nor do we know what will await us tomorrow morning but we do know that trials, temptations, and sin await us on the other side of 2012 and the setting sun but also along side them await grace, and love, and mercy.

…there will be storms in 2012, but there will also be sunshine.

…there will also be droughts, but there will most definetly be rain.

…pain will come, but healing will follow close behind.

…there will be defeats, but there will also be Victory.

It is reality that in life we will experience loss and pain of all sorts. We can not escape it. Trials are intricately apart of daily life. Life bring trials, trials that get in your face and dare to ask the question, “Is God really enough?”.

In some way this year our faith will be challenged, will He be enough in those times when the trials of life get in your face and question your faith?

I have learned so much this year, more than I could write in one setting. I think the most profound thing that I am learning, learning, is not to directly link the actions of people to God himself. God uses people and works through and in people but He is not people.

People will always in some way let you down, they are made in the likeness of God but they are not God.

When they do, remember He has not, for God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He is always faithful even when those around us, including ourselves, are not.

I say this because over the last year I have come to realize how many people I have let down and how many people have let me down. We are all sinners living in grace.

I want to name this coming year for my family, thanks Kristen, from We are THAT family, for the idea. He wears it on his wrist given by a friend. A gentle silent reminder that He has not left us and that with each breath it remains alive even though we may not beable to always see it or feel it.


2012 is our year of HOPE.

*photo’s courtesy of a dear sweet friend

A new beginning, a new faith, a new joy. A new crazy love for Jesus and for His people!

Read Full Post »

I have learned something about myself. I have a deep passion for photography, for capturing life and holding time, holding grace. There is something so magical about photography, something so internal I can’t completely comprehend it. Call me an over the top sentimentalist or romantic… but I can’t help it. When I am behind a camera I just feel in some way so connected with reality.

So, as I have come to understand my strange passion for photography I have been educating myself on it. I will be honest, I hate being an amateur and knowing so little. I want to automatically know how to take great photo’s, how to capture not only the moment but the feeling of the moment in my pictures. I know that it will take time, it is  a journey as is all of life.

So as I have grown {so little} in my photography education I have learned that…

I love bokeh!

Bokeh, bokeh, bokeh.

Love it.

Bokeh comes from a Japanese word boke which means “haze” or “blur”, which kinda sounds a little like my life right now, very blurry. Out of focus from where I am. A big haze-y mess.

The thing with bokeh is, it is beautiful, beautiful because it makes the object of focus stand out. Isn’t that what we are to do in these times of haze and blur, when we just don’t understand? Isn’t it meant to be beautiful, beautifully out of focus so that He will be beautifully in focus?

Oh, bokeh… a beautiful lesson in the lens of life and photography.

Darcy of Life with my 3 Boybarians is hosting a little Bokeh party. I thought I might join, make a quiet entrance through the back door… slip in unnoticed.

With a few pictures from around our little home, some just may have a little bokeh magic in them…


Like I said, I am an amateur… but by His grace one day I will actually know what I am doing… 😉

In the meantime, go visit Darcy and enjoy all the Bokeh!

Read Full Post »

We are at the table this morning, filling white… with color and words and expressing God with our brushes and fingertips.  We are painting our thoughts… blending reality and art. My thoughts are on homeschooling, as are so many other stay at home mothers during this time. The school year is here already for some, coming for others. Our homeschool year is quickly approaching like a freight train and I feel like a car stalled on the tracks of life. I am not even near ready for it to hit us August 8th. This last year’s failures are following to close behind me, painting black storm clouds over us, reminding me that we didn’t finish near where we wanted to and my 10 year old will be going into a Spanish school in Costa Rica next year. I am just using this year to catch up and finish his 4th grade year, I have 4 moths to prepare him. I have a lot of fears for this coming year, fears that I know will melt into the reality of grace and knowing He is sovereign over all things, even my failures as a homeschooling mom.  We are right where we are supposed to be and will continue to persevere in the light of His truths.  I hear these words among my fears and chaos… we are always right where we are supposed to be, where He has us. We make mistakes and fail in our goals but He is never the less always faithful and steadfast in His love for us. I have no worries. I am His, we are His.

Tomorrow I am piling in a car with 3 other ladies, mothers who are on this love journey of homeschooling and advancing the kingdom from the inside out, headed west to a homeschool conference in Houston, Texas. There we will find encouragement, strength, fellowship and laughter… much needed during this time of inner chaos.

Curriculum isn’t cheap. Life isn’t cheap. Education is life. This school year I have found it hard to be frugal with our new spine, our homeschool backbone as far as curriculum is concerned. How do you homeschool on a small budget… diligence and patience.  I have searched high and low and have found much of what I needed a lot cheaper with these two companions by my side. Next week is the beginning of the 3rd Annual Not Back-to-School Blog Hop which I hope to participate in and hope to maybe see you there as well? I love hearing what the Lord is doing in other homes, although I enter with my armor on from envy and discouragement… emotions that can quickly attack us if we are not prepared and content with where He has us even in our homeschool decisions.

Now it is raining outside as colors and life continues to rain inside… and new creations have begun at the table sculpting with solid paint-dough…

JOYfully in Him,


Read Full Post »

In a quiet afternoon my husband and I sat in the chaos of our minds as we wrestled thoughts and visions. We challenged each other’s faith and the visions we have for the future and for the now, because that is where it always starts… right here. The future is always before us and the past is always to close behind us, haunting us with our failures telling us that the future will be nothing but the same. It is a lie. We must not believe it. He is our hope; His perfection is where we find our refuge from those intrusive thoughts. We will fail tomorrow, yes that is true but we do not find our joy in our performance but in His. We are a beautiful mess. Making music, lives of praise together.

Our minds and hearts danced in the quiet of the afternoon to the voice of the Musician. We find each other’s hands while minds and hearts waltzed to the music, the melody of our long view for our family. Swaying back and forth, I give my thoughts, he gives his, we eventually stop stepping on each other’s toes and meet in unity and rhythm, our hearts mingle in the dance and we find grace. Our steps come to a stop as we realize that it starts right here, right now. The past is where we were, where He had us, where He taught us and what we had to go through to get to the right here. The long view… is uncertain we can only guess, plan, and always trust. Walk in faith, keeping a holy vision. Questions arise… naturally and inflict us with painful inner turmoil, a mystery into the spirit of God over the path of our life.

I read this article at Femina on the Long View, a holy vision for the future over parenting and it gave further food for our thoughts. In our dance, my husband and I came to understand that our “long view” never reaches the extent of His long view, it is very limited and at some point we must simply let go and trust our future with the Author of our story. We try to write out our story with the understanding and wisdom He gives us and then we walk by faith in perseverance and patience knowing and always being willing to re-write our script to harmonize with His.

As of right now our long view is to make disciples of our children, plant our roots in Christ here first, in the heart of our home, in the hearts of our children and each other. We will invest in their lives where we are right now, making time to pour love and grace into their souls. Souls… long term… never ending. Our long view is to see to it that their lives are filled with faith, splattered with joy, painted with grace, filled with Light, inspired to grow and advance, covered in Love and swirled with color.

As far as other plans, we know we are going to Costa Rica in December of this year. Our time is limited here, 5 months. The fears and the heart aches are starting to infect me as reality of leaving sets in hard. From there, our plans are to serve God and advance His kingdom while we learn spanish… for what? To move further South into Ecaudor, Peru, Brazil? Or maybe to move further North and come back to the states? We do not know… that is as far as our long view can see… so we walk by faith, by the Spirit as He gives us the rest of the script as we live lives of praise together, seeking to make disciples and advance the kingdom from the inside out… always starting right where we are, where He has us.

I hope you will persevere with me, with us as I strive to write our story, His story of our lives as we live it out in the flesh…

JOYfully in Him,


Read Full Post »

It has been an extremely productive day of cleaning around here. All three of my oldest kids are away at Nana’s for the day and my husband is at his “office” preparing for tomorrow. So I have been blessed to enjoy the day to myslef along side my Josai, it has been lovely. I love being able to spend time alone with my baby and my home. Right now he is taking his afternoon nap as I planned, I finished all my major household cleaning so that while he sleeps I could spend some time planning for our next school year.

There is a rather large purple elephant sitting in the room with me right now, one that I can not ignore (obviously) and one that I am sure you know nothing about, for I have not spoken much of it… it has been difficult for me to find the time or the words to share the presence of this no elephant between me and you. I feel it is the reason I have not been able to write lately… for he keeps staring at me and distracting me… ok, so enough with the imaginary purple elephant, although I kind of liked him ;). If you remember last year I mentioned that my husband took a trip to Ecuador , it was very vague I am not surprised if you do not remember. Well this trip was a scouting trip for us. We had felt the Lord leading us into the mission field, but we didn’t know where. After much time spent in prayer South America seemed to continue to come up in conversation with friends, magazines, and in other non related resources. Over time our hearts for the people in Ecaudor began to grow soft and so again with much prayer, seeking the Lord my husband and 2 friends took a trip there. Now, 9 months later we are giving birth to the reality of moving into missions. There is a lot of over brush and trees that we must clear from our path in order to make our way down to South America… the first is to sell everything or at least find it all a new homes. There is a lot of paper work to be done and little details as far as moving out of the country as well. A lot of decisions to make as far as what to bring and what not and a ton more (if we were to weight them all). Our first GIANT stepping stone that we will be jumping onto is a spanish language school in Costa Rica, in Central America. We will first move there to be immersed in the language and the culture. As of right now only my husband, my oldest boy and myself will be attending the school but all of that is subject to change. This is going to be a huge life change, hence the rather large elephant I was speaking of earlier. We are all excited about this except for most family members (as you can imagine), friends, and our 2 cats if they understood and knew they would soon find themselves in their own new foreign homes.

So, now you know! Woo. I feel so much better.

So, what do you think?

I hope you will join us in this journey of missional livng, I am sure it is going to be a full adventure, full of unexpected twists and turns with it’s own amount of turbulance… speaking of turbulance, that is my most fearful part… flying. I dread and hate flying, but if He says go… then flying it is. I do plan to blog more not only to keep you updated but to encourage you in your biblical calling for we are all missionaries, domestic missionaries and we are daily making disciples and seeking to advance the kingdom from the inside out!

So, on with the homeschool planning for our 2011-2012 homeschool year! I am, as you can imagine, a little overwhelmed with all of the details, or lack there of. I do not know if Kai, my 7 year old will be home or at the school nor do I know if I will be at school during the day for a few hours or if I will just be tutored. There are a lot of options. So right now I can only make a very rough draft as far as our school year is concerned. So as of right now I am trying to look into the future and plan our year out as roughly as I can, knowing everything is subject to change! When I finish my rough draft I will share what I find 😉

JOYfully in Him,


Read Full Post »

I am passionate about motherhood, the art of leading my children to their desperate need of God and that is why I love Doorposts! I take my calling to train them up in the way they should go, in His righteousness, very seriously (some would think a little to seriously, maybe… if that is even possible) I understand the responsibility I have been given with these little eternal souls and so do the people, the hearts behind Doorposts. They recently found a home in the blogsphere, visit them here…

Their mission is to provide “Bible-based, parent-designed, family-tested products to help you apply Scripture in your home.” Praise God for this ministry for fathers and mothers and their children.

You shall right them on the doorposts of your houses and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6:9

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: