You are currently browsing the monthly archive for August 2007.

…Sprite in one can!!!  I never knew just how much until I dropped a closed can on our ceramic tile floor and watched, helpless, as it exploded.  It covered me… it covered every cabinet and appliance in the kitchen… and the floor!  Oh!  The FLOOR!!! 

I had JUST finished cleaning the ENTIRE kitchen, even the top of the refrigerator and the cabinet ABOVE the refrigerator, just two hours ago.  I had gone outside to let my babies play while I tidied our deck. We were so hot and sweaty that the kids nicely asked for a very special treat of a “fizzy drink.”  Happy to oblige, I set the broom down and went into the pantry, smiling and knowing that the munchkins would be so happy- though their thirst wouldn’t be quenched.  As I went to put the sprite on the counter, to get water that WOULD soothe their parched little mouths, it sliiiiipped from my hand and crashed to the floor…

There is just sooooooo much anger in me!  At just that moment, Noah came to the door fussing and whining and demanding and I exploded.  Like a can of soda crashing to the floor I blew up!  “Why?!?”  I asked.  “Why are you so selfish?  Do you see this mess?  Do you see that I’m dripping with soda and that the kitchen is covered in it?  Why are you fussing and whining?  What on earth do you want?”  I felt HORRIBLE!  He began to cry.  The REAL tears… not the forced ones that come with selfish fussing, whining, grumbling, and complaining.  Oh!  My temper!  My poor sweet boy!!!  While he IS selfish and MUST STOP with the whining, he did not deserve his mommy’s wrath!  I crumpled to the floor, covered in a wet, sticky mess, and pulled him to me gently.  Looking him square in the eye, I confessed my sin and begged his forgiveness.  The sweet little lamb!  He forgave me and replied, “and Mommy, I am so sorry that I don’t always obey you and that I fuss a lot.”  Pretty sweet!  We tangled ourselves together in loving hugs and kisses and he happily went back to the deck to tell Lydia what had happened and that I would be there soon.  Oh Lord, God!  Get me under control!  Keep me from anger!  Protect my children’s hearts when I snap at them!  Erase it from their memories.  And God, I pray that YOU would forgive me!  I am to be YOU, to these little olive branches.  I am such a failure!  Work in me, and make me a vessel to honor and glorify you in ALL THINGS!!!

A man of quick temper acts foolishly,
   and a man of evil devices is hated.
Proverbs 14:17

Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding,
   but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly.
Proverbs 14:29

A hot-tempered man stirs up strife,
   but he who is slow to anger quiets contention.
Proverbs 15:18

Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty,
   and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.
Proverbs 16:32

Good sense makes one slow to anger,
   and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
Proverbs 19:11

A man of great wrath will pay the penalty,
   for if you deliver him, you will only have to do it again.
Proverbs 19:19

Make no friendship with a man given to anger,
   nor go with a wrathful man,
lest you learn his ways
   and entangle yourself in a snare.
Proverbs 22:24-25

A man without self-control
   is like a city broken into and left without walls.
Proverbs 25:28

For pressing milk produces curds,
   pressing the nose produces blood,
   and pressing anger produces strife.
Proverbs 30:33

But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these:  anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.
Colossians 3:8

Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.
Ecclesiastes 7:9

My dear brothers, take note of this.  Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
James 1:19-20

God is SO good!  There are so many more WONDERFUL verses that I can jot down, but my fingers are tired and my babies are needing me!

Oh Lord!  You are gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.  Make me like You!  Please?!?

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

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God is such FUN!  I wonder, sometimes, if He sits back and just laughs at me!  A Father, laughing at His child because she is falling all over herself, delighting in Him and His goodness and kindness to her!  He is SOOOO good, y’all!

I think of the way Charles reclines and throws his head back in a hearty rumble of  laughter when Lydia is beside herself with joy at some great feat of her Daddy’s…  Lydia is delighting in her father, and he is delighting in her. It tickles him that he’s made her so happy! 

Yes… God is my Father.  Oh!  How I adore Him and look up to Him with happy expectation… panting almost…a dog panting- that is what I’ve become!!!  I happily wag my tail and slobber all over, contentedly!  I am like Dora in Dickens’ David Copperfield.  Oh!  How I used to abhor her!  And now I AM her!  With my earthly husband and with my Kinsman Redeemer… with my good and holy Father in heaven… I am content to just hold their pens! 

All of that to say-

God is so very good!  I love Him more than I could hope to describe!!!  The really neat thing about it is that He loves me more than I can ever hope to fathom!

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

The Most Important Thing:

     When wars have ceased, international leaders have become dust and the poverty of their souls is revealed; when enterprises crumble and the last dream has evaporated; when death has claimed the final person, and those alive are changed for their eternal future; when everything earthly and mundane is over, and each person resides in heaven or hell—what will be important? And what among all that is important will be the most important?

     This is a question worth thinking about, because finding out what is important in the end will, or at least should, tell you what is important now. That which is important for eternity, that is, for billions of years and more, is surely the most important thing to God for this brief wisp of time called human history. And it should be even more important for you, since you live here for only a small fraction of that wisp.

     What if, in your hurry and your worry about so many little things, you actually missed the most important thing?

     That which is most important for all time, as is well known only to some, is Jesus Christ. I mean, not just Jesus Christ as a being, but Jesus Christ in the light of what he has done—his life, death, and resurrection. It is a huge gamble to dismiss the one who is the center of everything. There is, in fact, no hope for such a person.

     You know what it means to forget the most important element of some concoction—like the sugar in sugar cookies, or the coffee in your coffee and cream, or the lens in your glasses, or the warhead on your nuclear weapon. But some of you have forgotten Christ, and his death and resurrection, as if he were not essential to life and eternity. He is, rather, everything related to life and eternity. This is why I say there is no hope for such an omission.

     Christ’s perfect life, his sacrificial and substitutionary death, and his victorious authenticating resurrection provide the foundation of all hope. As Dr. J. Gresham Machen (1881-1937) stated, “Christianity begins with a triumphant indicative.” God declares that something is done on behalf of those who will come to him—Jesus lived without sin as the perfect lamb, took on their sin and died in their place as the adequate sacrifice, and was raised bodily over the power of sin and death for them.

     To think little or not at all about the centerpiece of history, is to guarantee that you will have no place in heaven. It is not enough to merely be religious by going to church on holidays or even every Sunday, or doing a few other well-meaning duties. It is not religion that makes you acceptable to God. You must be “accepted in the Beloved,” that is, in Christ’s merits alone. (Eph. 1: 6) Only trusting in Christ, resting your confidence in the one who lived, died, and was raised again, can assure you of heaven.

     To believe otherwise, to add your little bit of religious activity to Christ as if you could impress God, is actually insulting to God. Either Christ is sufficient or he stands in need of you to satisfy God’s wrath and to provide your acceptance before the Father. The declaration of Scripture is that he does not need you; rather, you need him, for without a living relationship with him through faith, you could not possibly be received by the Father. Christ cried out on the cross, “It is finished,” meaning, it is paid in full. But “If righteousness comes by the law, then Christ died needlessly.” (Gal. 2: 21)

     You may say, “Anyone can begin a religion like Christianity.” But you give away the fact that you think of Christianity as only a system of duties. You are wrong. It is about Christ and what he has done that could not be done by any other. If you are merely a moralist, using some Christian terminology at times, don’t think you have become a true Christian. Moralism damns, in and of itself. Christianity is not based on what you do, but on Christ, his death, and his resurrection. If this is too much to swallow now, you will avow it later, but sadly, when it is too late.

     It does not have to be this way. You may put your trust in Christ, terminating your confidence in yourself as sufficient to please God. You may enjoy now, before the end of time and throughout the rest of time, an authentic relationship with him. There is a world, an eternal world, of difference between trusting him and dismissing him as will one day be completely understood.

     It is Christ who will one day be seen by all, rightly, to be the center of everything, the apex of history, the hope of mankind, the reference point of the universe, the conversation and exaltation of heaven, the eternal joy of millions, and the eternal bane of even more. And it is now that you should trust him.

~Jim Elliff  “The Most Important Thing” 

I’ve TONS to do, but I MUST gush about my great God!!!  Oh!  How sorry I am for those who don’t know Him and so don’t get to have the joy and delight in Him that comes with that relationship!  Oh… sure… there is other joy and delight- that of children, friends, fun… but nothing so profound, so all-encompasing, so KNOCK YOUR STINKIN’ SOCKS OFF as the joy and delight that one has when she is in submission to Christ and relying on the tender mercies of her great God.  Let everything else pass away and fall to pieces.  My God is merciful and faithful.  He is tender and He loves to woo me.  I am a very happy recipient of His wooing, too!   There is no greater love… but I could ramble all day.
Pray for our little family.  We always seem to  have some trial…   some hurdle… some “stress”.  But praise God.  He is in control and we belong to Him!  He delights in showing us mercy!
“But this I call to mind,
 and therefore I have hope:

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
  his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
  great is your faithfulness.”

~Lamentations 3:21-23
This (like all scripture) is SO true!  Charles and I can certainly attest to that!  Oh!   How merciful our God has been with us this morning… in seemingly little things that are mountains to us. (I love the way Mr. Hirsch says that ALL things are little to our big God!)   Of course, I am embarrassed to confess that I don’t always shout it from the mountaintops, but He is loving, merciful and tender EVERY morning!  Because of the steadfast love of the Lord, we are not cut off!!!  Christ controlled the very breath of the men who nailed Him to the cross… and He mercifully gives you yours, today.
“Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.

Remember your mercy, O Lord, and your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for the sake of your goodness, O Lord!”

~Psalm 25:5-7

Because of YOUR goodness, Lord!  You delight to show me mercy… you delight in remembering me because of YOUR goodness!!!  Don’t let Your goodness be called into question…REMEMBER ME!  Not because I’m great, or because I throw myself before you… but because YOU are good, God!!!  It’s really very comforting!  I am, after all, a flighty screw-up!  You know this… you know I am but dust!  How nice to know, though that your kindness is wrought out of YOUR goodness and not mine.  YOU will ALWAYS be good!  Oh happy thought!  How can I not love You?  What is a blood-bought bride to do, but lay at Your feet?

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Lydia Dianne is 3 today!!!

I’ve been a bit emotional about it for a few weeks now.  I’m not sure why.  I didn’t go through this with Noah… but I think it’s because I had little Lydia to be the baby, as Noah grew. 

While Lydia has acted like a 4-year-old for the last year, it’s still really hard to see her go from 2 to 3.  I confess, I never really think of her being 2.  She doesn’t act it.  She speaks better than many adults we know.  She’s a doll, really!  So why is the actual age change so difficult?  One friend suggested it might be that I’m thinking this is it… the last baby… ever… Of course Charles denies that this is the case and we fantasize about having more in a few years, once Noah is established in a school routine, etc… but I wonder. 

Ultimately it is up to God.  There is great comfort in trusting Him.  If Lydia is my last baby, so be it.  There IS an unbelievable ache in my heart right now, though!  She’s not TWO!  She’s THREE!!!  And little Lou is so very excited about it, too!

After rocking her a bit this morning, I snuggled her and prayed with her, thanking God for this precious blessing that He has given me.  I am so unworthy!  We prayed that God would grow her to be a strong, godly woman… that I would be a loving and consistent mother, teaching her the things of God….  after praying, she squeezed my neck in typical Lydia fashion and then wiggled free from my clinging.  She leaned into my lap and said, “It’s okay, Mommy.  I have to grow big, but I’ll let you squish me little, if you want so I can be little for you forever.  But I have to get big so I can have a wedding.” 

WEDDING?!?

Oh!  she is SOOOOO big!!!

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

From sweet Beth:

To all of the mommas working diligently at mothering:

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, The way one of the kids will walk into the room while I’m on the phone And ask to be taken to the store. Inside I’m thinking, “Can’t you see I’m on the phone?”

Obviously not. No one can see if I’m on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, Or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all.

I’m invisible.

Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this?
Can you open this?

Some days I’m not a pair of hands; I’m not even a human being. I’m a clock to ask, “What time is it?”
I’m a satellite guide to answer, “What number is the Disney Channel?”
I’m a car to order, “Right around 5:30, please.”

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude -but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again.

She’s going ? she’s going ? she’s gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. Janice had just gotten Back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking Around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a banana clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it.

I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, “I brought you this.”

It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn’t exactly sure why she’d given it to me until I read her inscription: “To Charlotte, with admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees.”

In the days ahead I would read – no, devour – the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:

* No one can say who built the great cathedrals – we have no record of their names.

* These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.

* They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

* The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man,  Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.”

And the workman replied, “Because God sees.”

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, “I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you’ve done, no sequin you’ve sewn on, no cupcake you’ve baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can’t see right now what it will become.”

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride.

I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don’t want my son to tell the friend he’s bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, “My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.” That would mean I’d built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to add, “You’re gonna love it there.”

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we’re doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

“Whoa!” thoughts that I want to chew on… to ruminate on… to grind between my teeth, sucking out every little bit of goodness:

  • God so loved the world that He sent His Son into a brothel and He paid the infinite price of HIS LIFE to BUY ME back!!!
  • He didn’t just TAKE me back- He BOUGHT me back with His LIFE!
  • Betrothed to Christ
    • IN RIGHTEOUSNESS
    • IN JUDGEMENT
    • IN LOVINGKINDNESS
    • IN FAITHFULNESS
    • IN MERCY
  • Christ IN me, the hope of glory!
  • Ammi- My people
  • Ruhama- She has obtained mercy… she is LOVED!
  • I WILL call Him HUSBAND!!!  Woohoo!!!
  • Ishi!
  • I am not my own!
  • I’ve been bought with a price!
  • The most precious price that has EVER been paid was paid for MY redemption!
  • The love of God is so intense that He sursues His wife and buys her out of prostitution and makes a new pledge of His troth. 

That’s MY Hope!!!

 

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

It was anthrax!

We got a package from china via california today through UPS.  Something I ordered from a company on ebay.  ANYWAY… after I excitedly dug into it, I noticed white powder all over the box.  Okay… I admit to being slightly dramatic… but I’ve always thought that China could very slowly and easily pick us off one by one… until there is no more U.S.  Come on!  EVERYTHING comes from China!  Are we INSANE?!?  You know how lazy you can be on YOUR job sometimes… imagine the FDA and all of the customs agents, etc… how dull and monotonous!!!  Do you really think they bust their butts over EVERY import?!?  NO!  One box out of millions?!?  All I’m saying, is if you don’t hear from us for a while… find the box!

Thanks!
tina

Oh… and I wanted Charles to pray and he LAUGHED at me and said it was probably flour!  FLOUR?!?  Who sends flour via UPS?!?  Why?!?  Anyway… it doesn’t look like any flour I’ve ever seen!  Speaking of flour… I love the bit in that movie with Will Farrell where he brings her “flours”!  *happy sigh*

Off to google anthrax!

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

If the 2007-2008 parents and students love Charles as much as the 06-07 bunch did, maybe they’ll decorate our yard with bright, colorful posters or something!!!  The toilet paper business makes for a hot, messy clean up, especially as our neighbor had his sprinkler on and the tp was soaked and falling to pieces as we tried to clean up!!!    Our hearts were full of love the entire time our bodies were sweating, though!  Noah and Lydia love to wake up to “a party in the front yard.”  While we had to throw the tp away, we’d be able to KEEP fun signs!

Anyway… most of the tp is gone (except for the high bits, waiting for our jolly giant daddy to get home).  We were so hot that once the garbage can was full and all the tp we could reach was gone, the babies ran to the deck and jumped into their little wading pool (clothes on) because, “Mommy, we just need some refreshment!”

So… for our friends and family:

 

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Flushed Cheeks= picking up wet tp is a hot, messy job!!!  They were such fun sports, though!

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LOVE!

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Future Aquabat

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Mr. Mischevious- just like his daddy!

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Scamp!

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He had to sit on the “naughty seat”.

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He caught his momma taking a picture of him on the naughty seat and wasn’t too happy about it!

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Chillin’ out… relaxin’…

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this is the life!

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Naughty again!

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Poor Muffin!
We’ve handled it and he’s happy now! 

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Charles and I were watching the second Zoro movie last night when there was a loud, low THUD against the front of our house!  A bit miffed that Charles didn’t immediately jump up and check out the source (I teased him for being too enthralled with Catherine Zeta Jones), I snapped, “Aren’t you going to check that out, Oh great protector!?!” 

 

He got up and shuffled, lazily to the door in his boxers (I threw him a shirt- and it’s a good thing) to find a bunch of fifth-graders racing to vans!  As their moms screeched down the street, we just laughed and laughed!  Again, soft white toilet paper, beautifully contrasting the night sky flapped from our trees, declaring love to a GREAT teacher!  We turned off the lights and waited… to see if they’d come back… and SURE ENOUGH… two large vehicles began creeping down the street.  When they slowed in front of the house, Charles was OFF like a bolt of lightning.  The vans sped off again, with shouts of “WE LOVE YOU MR. MOSER” and rolls of toilet paper flying out of the windows. 

 

Charles and I sat on the steps for a while chuckling and reminiscing.  It was a GOOD class last year!  The parents were great (moms and dads REALLY involved and wanting the best for their kiddos… willing to do whatever it might take); the students were hard-workers.  He wonders how any another class will compare.  We can talk about accountability all day, but it really isn’t just up to the teachers.  How do you hold a teacher accountable when the parents don’t come to conferences… when the student refuses to do homework or even FINISH the LEAP test (oh yes, dear tax-payers, many students bubble a few bubbles and say, “I’m done.  This is stupid” and WHO is held responsible- not the student… not the parent… the TEACHER!  The TEACHER is the one who must account for the low numbers on the massive print-out.)?  Go on, government; hold the teacher accountable for that!  Imbeciles.  (Sorry.  I digress.)

 

At any rate, a successful school year is not the product of a good teacher, alone.  It’s the parents and the students WANTING to succeed.  It’s a team effort and in 2006-2007, Charles definitely had a winning team!  These parents and children have CERTAINLY raised the bar!  As he glowed with compliments about the 06-07 parents and students, headlights began to creep again up our quiet little street.  Charles had them this time and before we knew it, our lawn was full of fun mommas and fabulous (now) fifth-graders!  Here are some (blurry) photos:

 

 

 

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Good luck to the teachers who have this bunch in the 07-08 year!!!

 

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved