Monday, December 29, 2008

Here is the beautiful new washer

Here is the amazing washer. We literally did sit in front of it with a flashlight to watch the clothes spin. It uses such a small amount of water that my husband stopped the load to see if they were even wet. I am hoping that we are saving money by saving water? Here are the buttons on the top that I need to use my college degree for.

It really isn't that bad, just different. I have done several loads and it is great! Maybe it is better than a tv after all. We are going to put 1 dollar per load into savings and get the matching dryer when we have saved enough. After this weekend, we are up to $10. Yippee!

The only person in the family that doesn't like it is the cat. She won't step foot into the washroom. Not a good thing since her litter box is in there. I am hoping that she gets over it. Not sure why she doesn't like it besides being able to see inside of it. I only do wash once a week, so hopefully over the next couple of days she will acclimate. So, for now she is using the litter box in the garage...

Blessings and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2008

I don't want a new washing machine...

Okay, I apologize for the whiny voice that you hear in your head right now. It isn't that I am not going to be grateful and even thrilled with a new front loading washing machine with all the bells and whistles. I will need to take lessons on what all the settings mean and my clothes will not fade in color (or so the manual says).

Here is the thing - we were saving for a new 42 inch digital tv for Christmas (my husband and kids were rooting for the 46 inch). My husband and I agreed to not spend money on each other and get a new tv for each other for Christmas. I was so looking forward to watching my favorite movies on the widescreen...Alas, the 11 year old, used when we got it, washing machine literally ceased up. Luckily it was on the last load of the day and the neighbors graciouslly allowed us to use theirs.

Oh, we had an indication that it might die when it started to squel like a pig during the spin cycle a couple of weeks ago. But, it was still working and the the noise went away. How bad could it be? Why replace something that is still working? Okay, it could go at any minute, but why rush things? I was all ready to be irresponsible and go buy that tv that I have been drooling over at Wal-Mart. After all, the washing machine was still working...

God knows my thoughts (like the washing machine broke because of God? Weirder things have happened). So, it wasn't until the darn thing stopped moving - no movement anywhere - the agitator stopped spinning, the water would not drain and I was stuck with a washer full of wet towels!

It was at that moment that I knew, I was getting a washing machine for Christmas instead of a new tv. I am not thrilled, really, not at all.

So, if anyone wants to bring their laundry over, we are going to sit in front of the new washing machine, with a red bow one it, and watch our laundry go around. Don't forget the popcorn!


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

Today is me and my hubby's 14th anniversary! In my heart and in the spirit we have been married and committed to each other longer than that. This day always reminds me of our humble and sinful beginning - yet, I am grateful for the journey. Let me share...

About sixteen years ago, I had to have the conversation with my boyfriend that no girl wants to have, "I am pregnant." We were without excuse, nobody's fault but ours. I flat out refused to have a second abortion, but also refused to be a single mom. We choose to select adoptive parents together and actually had a couple picked out to give this child to.

Life took a turn the moment Roger looked upon his tiny little daughter. He was enchanted by her - she was real for the first time. We had talked about names and what name I would give a girl. I would name her after my grandmother who loved me and Christ even more at the end of her life. He remembered and had the nurses put that on her birth certificate. So, she was Charity Elise from the beginning.

I signed the papers for foster parents to come and take her for the next 6 weeks - the waiting period for newborn adoptions. I left the hospital with Roger, but without our little girl. It was odd. I remember being exhausted both physically and emotionally. I just wanted to cry!

Roger wanted to "go for a walk". He had never done this before and I was curious. We walked. He said something that I will not forget, "What will happen if we decide to get married and don't have our daughter with us?". I stopped and looked at him. I wasn't quite sure what he was saying. He explained that God opened his eyes when Charity was born and he couldn't imagine his life without both of us in it. (Sometimes he might question it with a teenager in the house:) I kindly reminded him that he would be marrying me and be stuck with me long after this child leaves the house. Did he love me enough without the child?

I was difficult and wanted it all. I wanted a husband that loved me. I wanted a real wedding. I wanted to be engaged. He convinced me and that was the moment that I knew we were in this for "as long as we both shall live".

We called the adoption agency and said that we changed our mind. We had nothing. No diapers, bottles, clothes or bedding. Yet, the Lord in His wisdom brought us together to make a family. We were married when Charity was 16 months old on Dec. 17th 1994.

I am just so blessed today to have so much because of God's faithfulness.

Blessing today

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas Meme

This was sent to me by a good friend and I thought I would share my answers with you.

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I am not really into wrapping. I have been known to give gifts that were still in the store bag that it came in. Not so much for Christmas, but birthdays. Christmas - I find boxes and use paper.

2. Real tree or Artificial? We usually have a real tree - at least until the kids leave. We love the smell. This year we found one with pine cones on it. We will probably find an artificial tree when we get older - won't be able to carry it up the steps.

3. When do you put up the tree? Traditionally the Friday after Thanksgiving. Last year we waited a week because Thanksgiving was so early and the tree would have been really dead before Christmas.

4. When do you take the tree down? After the New Year, before school starts in January.

5. Do you like Egg Nog? Yes, but I am the only one in my house that does, so I only buy it once.

6. Favorite gift received as a child? I vividly remember getting a gift certificate to get my ears pierced. I loved that gift. I can't do just one. I also loved the Pizzelle maker that my husband got me our first Christmas together.

7. Hardest person to buy for? Husband. He usually buys what he needs - I have to find something intangible (gift certificates, etc).

8. Easiest person to buy for? My son, Eli. Anything that moves fast, cars, trains, video games. He is always so grateful!

9. Do you have a nativity scene? I think that we have 3. We only set one up. Our house has limited space so we pick a different one every year. (plus the outside lawn ornament type)

10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Neither. We send out Easter letters and photos. We have more time to get them sent out during that time of year.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Getting no gifts at all

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? It's a Wonderful Life

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Depends, usually October sometime

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yes, I must admit that I have re-gifted.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Fudge and pizzelles (italian Christmas cookie)

16. Lights on the tree? yes

17. Favorite Christmas songs: Breathe of Heaven by Amy Grant

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? home

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Yes, what kind of mom would I be if I couldn't (just kidding to those mom's that can't :)

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? This year an angel

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas Eve for Grandma, Morning for the immediate family

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Traffic and craziness of stores like Wal-mart/Target that I do my weekly shopping at.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? Don't have one

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner?We have BBQ ribs. Yum

25. What do you want for Christmas this year? Quiet time with my family

If you feel like doing your own, let me know and I will come and visit you!


Friday, December 05, 2008

Fave Friday #16

I can only join in once in awhile, when life slows down a little. Who would have guessed that my life slows down around Christmas? Well, it is the break between the swim season and the synchro season. And the boy is too young to be in any skiing sport (yet). It is always so fun to see how blessed we all are. Thanks for hosting Susanne!

1) Swim Banquet: It is a time to celebrate all the good things that the girls accomplished. It is often boring for the parents (at least it is for me) but Charity has done so well. I can't help but be proud of her Varsity Letter and Distinguished Academic Award (3.6 GPA or higher).

2) Reading: I enjoy winter for the excuse it gives me to read. The sun goes down early and all I want to do is curl up by the fire with a good book. See this post for my most recent favorite read.

3) Day with the Hubby: A week or so ago my husband and I took the day off together and went Christmas shopping together. It was nice to browse and spend money together. We also got to go out for lunch and talk without the kids interrupting or fighting. What an amazing thing!

4) Christmas progams on tv: This might seem like a strange favorite, but I just love this time of year when healthy, family time specials are on tv. The classics like Charlie Brown, the Grinch and Rudolph.

5) Ship to Store: Many stores now have this now. You can save shipping costs, but also get what you want when you get to the store. Shipping is free, you can just pick it up at the store. I did this with Wal-mart (and since I go there anyway) and saved myself money and getting what I needed for gifts.

That is all that I have for now.


Thursday, December 04, 2008

Book Review - Riven by Jerry Jenkins

I just devoured this book. I read a review on it in Today's Christian Women magazine and then actually found it on the shelf in the library last week. I liked the Left Behind series that he wrote with Tim LaHaye and wanted to give it a go.

The author's note indicated that this is a book that he has had in his mind and heart for decades and has finally put in on paper. For me, the book did not disappoint. Jenkins does a beautiful job of creating the two main characters, Brady Darby (juvenile delinquent) and Thomas Carey (pastor/Chaplain). By the time they meet in the book you are wanting both of them to see the power of God.

I did not want to put the book down and was captivated by the complexity of the human heart. Jenkins captured the struggles of the characters and allowed us to experience it with them. If you have ever wondered about forgiveness and the Grace of God, this book strikes a chord as to the power of that. Does God's Word have power? This "story/parable" doesn't allow you to sit without thinking about what God can and is willing to do for us.

I highly recommend this book if you get a chance. It is now one of the top ten books on my list.


Monday, December 01, 2008

Oh, to be a Cat

Princess hopped in the dryer when it was still warm.
Was she telling me something?

This is her relaxing after I got the hint and
started the wood stove to warm up the place.
Oh, to have the life of a fat cat.

Blessings today