Archive for March, 2008

Marching On Again

Well, it appears that the wicked blog fairy got a hold of my blog over the last week. First it got rid of all my comments, then it got rid of my whole blog entirely. Then my fairy blog mother came to my rescue and after a few days of pure dumbness, all has been restored. All except the last post I wrote, that is. Too bad I didn’t save it somewhere. Oh well. I’m going to try to recreate it here. It was mostly a whole bunch of pictures taken over my blogging hiatus. Pictures of all the things that happen in March. Basically, my longest post ever. Ready? Here goes….

In March, sometimes the weather is so nice, we open all the windows and let the breeze blow the curtains like this:

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And sometimes it snows in March. This month we actually had snow on two different days. Some of us were pretty happy about it.

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Some of us were really REALLY happy about it.

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And some of us could take it or leave it, really. I mean, just because there’s snow on the ground doesn’t mean it’s cold enough to wear a coat, after all.

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In March, sometimes I walk into my back yard and find this gigantic nest in my bare peach tree:

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I also start working really hard at creating tasty, healthy meals for our family.

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And when it’s not snowing, sometimes we eat outside and have friends over to share those meals with us. Some of those friends have babies growing inside of them.

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Sometimes friends come from out of town to visit us, like Jason Staniger.

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Jason Staniger’s funny.

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Daddy’s funny too.

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Grace has a PTA program at school where she does a wonderful job playing this whatchamacallit.

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Seth comes to watch Grace’s performance. He is always so supportive of all the girls’ activities. We can’t wait to be just as supportive of him in a couple years.

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Mr. Fatty Fat Cheeks came too, but he slept through the whole thing.

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And did you notice that lovely glow lighting up Seth and Uncle Chris’ faces in that picture up there? I noticed it when I took that picture so I walked over to the school cafeteria door to check out the sunset and this is what I saw through the window:

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Speaking of sunsets, we do get some amazing ones in Texas in March. The other evening I went out to the lake to take some senior pictures and the sun looked quite dramatic through the thin, gray clouds as it started to set.

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Then on my way home, driving back over the lake, this is my view out my front windshield. (Yes, I took this while driving, going 65mph on the freeway over Lake Ray Hubbard. Just held the camera up with my right hand while steering with my left hand, not looking through the lens to see what I was focusing on or checking to see what the shutter speed was set on or anything.) Sometimes the sunset is just wonderful enough to outdo any photography skills.

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Grace gets her hair cut in March.

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And so does Sadie.

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Some of us like to spend Spring Break dancing.

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On a lovely spring day, we take a family picnic out to the park. After we eat, Grace and Sadie have quite the fierce (girly) game of soccer….

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While Chris and Callie put the kite together….

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And I do a wholelotta nuttin.

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We also stumble across this rare find of natural beauty. Good thing they had it marked for us or we might have missed the stunning naturalness of it all. It kind of takes your breath away.

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But boy, does that sun feel good on our faces.

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And now that March is almost over, the peach tree in our back yard has pink flowers all over it, the basil in the glass of water on my kitchen counter has white flowers all over it, my voice is still hoarse and my fridge is still full with leftover lamb and chocolate from our midnight feast last Saturday night and Chris and I have been married sixteen years. Summer’s comin’. Happy March, everyone!

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Lent

I’ve been tired.

In fact, I’ve been slowly sinking into the mire.

And now I’m mired.

I need some time off. I know I’m a little late to this season of lent, but for what it’s worth, I am going to observe the rest of it. I think I’ve been allowing it to observe me without being willing to put a name to it. I’ve been calling it things like depression and being down on myself and wanting to retreat and not share anything with anyone ever again, especially not here. But yesterday I was reminded of hope. Of the hope we have in Jesus. The hope of eternity. The hope of Heaven. The hope of this aching, dying body that I inhabit being made new and the hope of these aching, pain-filled, disjointed relationships that I’m in truly coming together as one as we joyfully walk down the aisle to meet our groom face to face. And this time now, this season of lent, this season where I’m reminded of how Jesus himself retreated to the desert and fasted and prayed for forty days, is an appropriately somber season.

And so.

So I have decided to allow myself to be somber. I have decided to take what’s left of winter and reflect. The trees are still bare, the air is still chilly, today is even gray and rainy and quiet and beautiful. A good day for prayer and reflection. I’ve been thinking I need to take some time off from blogging to work on my self-esteem. But the reality is that my self-esteem does not need to be worked on. It is good to remember that I am a sinner. And I hate it. Hate it. Am not liking myself at all these days. But I think I need to take some time off from blogging not to feel better about myself, but to give myself the freedom to retreat. To not worry about what others think. To not feel the pressure to think profoundly. To surrender. And to surrender alone.

I wonder if anyone’s ever given up blogging for lent before? And I wonder if anyone’s ever been lame enough to only observe the last two weeks of lent instead of the full forty days? I’m okay with being lame though. It will just make the new season even sweeter. At the end of the somberness will be great rejoicing. Jesus died for this sin that I seem to be mired in. He took it all. And he didn’t stay dead. That’s where my hope is. My hope is in new life. The trees will begin to blossom and maybe, just maybe, my heart will blossom too. We plan on feasting on lamb at midnight Easter day in our home.

Until then, I am retreating. I am not writing about any of the million things that are on my mind. I hope to surrender the million things to God instead. And I hope to feel pain and shed many tears. And when the new season comes, maybe, just maybe I’ll be back.

See you in the spring.

Maybe.

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Idea-Havers

I’ve been thinking a lot about people lately. This is something I indulge in regularly – thinking about people and thinking about me and thinking about people and me together. Actually, I guess I think more about me than about people. But today I’ve been thinking about people.

I’ve been thinking about the people who always come up with the ideas. I am coming to realize that though I tend to surround myself with those types of people, I am not one of them. I am usually content (or at least resigned) to float from thing to thing without thinking too hard about how to make it different or better or worthy. I just think about how pretty it is or how good it smells or how if I have to hear one more note of that song, I might just bang my head against the first wall I come to. And I do hope it’s a brick one, because I really would like to see if my head would break the brick wall or if the wall would break me.

Interesting isn’t it, how I am surrounded by idea-havers? In fact, I believe I might be married to the Grand Poopah of idea-havers. And what’s weirder is how they all like to run their ideas by me all the time, as though I might somehow come up with some ingenious contribution to their future-driven fantasies. Each and every day brings new and different excitements and I just ride them like a roller coaster with my hands in the air, screaming “Wheeeeeee!” I do love roller coasters. I wonder if I am ever discouraging to these beautiful people as they run all their ideas past me? Sometimes I think maybe they want me to chug along the track with them, picking up steam, while saying sentences that start with, “Yeah! And then we could…..” or “Ooooooo! You’re the best idea-haver I’ve ever known!!!!!!!” But most of the time, my responses come out more like monosyllabic, indistinguishable grunts while my mind is saying things like “too…. much….. information….. can’t…….. process….. must….. shut…….. down……. now.” And then I go away from that person and dwell for two or three days and when I finally feel like I know how I feel about their idea and am ready to encourage them in it, they’ve already moved on to four new ideas.

Fascinating, these people are. Makes me tired just thinking about it.

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