Thursday, September 15, 2011

Middle of the Night woes

So, I've been up since 1:47am.  Ugh!  I am feeling okay right now, but am afraid that at 3 o'clock today, as I'm getting on our second flight of the trip, I'm going to want to kill myself.

One thing on my mind, among many things, this morning was an article I read last night in the August Home Life before going to bed.  In "Stripping the Veneer," Casey Avenriep talks about what it takes for a Christian to truly be authentic with people in our culture where looks and image matter so much.  A quote from the opening paragraph caught my attention:

Why is it so difficult for me to be authentic, to admit failure, to boldly defy worldly standards, and to cry out to God for help in the process?  Could it be that I desire acceptance more than I do obedience? 

Good questions.  They should have come out of my mouth first!  He sights reading a book called Veneer: Living Deeply in a Surface Society, by Willard and Locy as being inspirational and challenging.  (Maybe I found a new book to wreck my world?  I'll have to hunt it down.)  If we as Christians are called to be not of the world but in it, and to be Christ's hands and feet, how is it that my life seems at times a little "cookie-cutter"?  I lay awake last night thinking about parts of my life where I need to be more honest, more authentic, more deliberate in my conversations.  At first look, I thought "well, I'm pretty honest with these people," and that's true: I am basically an open book.  I talk about how dirty my house really is, how I picked a fight with my husband, things that frustrate me beyond belief, and when the last time I washed my hair with some people, particularly my friends.  I thought about why that is.  I have a few friends who I believe will love me no matter what I say - even when I admit to being hateful towards someone.   (I am thankful to you, by the way, more than you know.  I need to say it more often, but I'm so thankful to have people to share my life with.)

I guess that's the problem at hand, then isn't it:  Are we afraid of not being loved?  Are we afraid of judgement?  Are we afraid of not meeting the standards we believe others have set for us?  Or the standards we've set?  Do we imagine that if we don't look or act or behave a certain way, then we can't be a part of a certain group?  If I lose face and people see how I really am, will they want to be around me?  I think all of these things fall into play.  Oh when all these things were running through my mind (at 2:30) I became so disheartened!  I know I am guilty of not showing love in all circumstances!  Whether by a look or a comment, to someone I know or a stranger in Publix, I have passed a quick judgement and moved on, instead of pausing and listening and loving someone.  I am called to show Jesus to people!  As He loves my soul, I am called to love others'.  What a poor lover of souls I am.

I finally got out of bed at 5 and got my Bible and study book out.  As I sat over orange juice and the Word, I thought about all the places my mind wandered in the middle of the night.  It crossed my mind that maybe I needed to spend time thinking about those things.  Lately my quiet time has been hurried and less than ideal.  Perhaps because I did not set time aside yesterday (or all week) for prayer, the Lord set aside some time for me.  When I think about it like that, it's pretty cool that the God of the Universe woke me up last night to deal with me on some things.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Happy Fall Y'all!

I am fully aware that it is still summer, according to both the calendar and the weather.  (The shorts on my legs testify to that, too.)  However, as fall is one of my four favorite seasons (haha), I need to enjoy it for much longer than the weather allows me too!  That means I plan to bake pumpkin-butter bars, and I've already gotten my pumpkin decorations out, appliqued a cute pumpkin on a shirt for Addie, and lit a "fall harvest" candle!  To all those things Brad said "oh goody."  He's such a stick-in-the-mud!

Speaking of Brad: this week he celebrated his 31st birthday.  What an old man, right???  I ragged him about it for a little while, asking him how it felt to be "in your thirties," (you know, as opposed to just thirty) etc.  That, however, lost its entertainment value when he reminded me that I'll turn 30 in October... boo Brad.  Seriously, though, I'm not one of those people who's fretting over it.  Now the gray hairs in my bangs, on the other hand, I have a problem with!

Tomorrow Addison and I will travel to visit my family.  I'm super stoked about the trip, but am VERY anxious about the flight!  Way more so than I have been the other 3 or 4 times we've flown.  I feel like I need to be more relaxed, but my gal hasn't been acting normal - teething or something -  so I'm a a bit on edge about it.  If you read this before Thursday, or before our return flight on Tuesday, pray for us!  I can't wait to see my sister and her sweet baby, Holmes (which Addison says like "How-wes"), and our brother Drew, and of course our parents!  Rara and Grandaddy are ready, I'm sure, to have their home invaded by their kiddos, and a one year old who has just pulled out every single pot and pan I own... good grief!
I love this picture.  She's not wearing anything cute - a $3 shirt from Target I think - and her hair's a mess and she's got drool everywhere, but it's just so her!  I was trying to get a picture of Addison with the swiffer (the new favorite toy), and when she saw the camera she threw the swiffer down and raced towards me to ham it up!  She's so ridiculous!  Every day I'm amazed at her sweet, pleasing spirit, and the love she wants to shower on Brad and I.  Now, don't get me wrong: we have our moments, but I'm in awe of the blessing she is, even on days like today when she's been a bit fussy, I've got packing to finish, and all she wanted to do was pull the suitcase down off the bed!  I'm praying that as she gets older and I get more used to this motherhood thing, that Brad and I will have wisdom and discipline to raise a godly daughter, I will continue to recognize her for the blessing she is, and I'll be more ready to accept help on days when I need it, haha.

Does this ad make you cry?  I just looked at it for the first time today, and it is ridiculous!  I love it!  Check it out.

All of that said, Happy Fall Y'all!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

child neglect

So, I don't think you can see the results thus far, but I've totally been neglecting my sweet child.  It started with AMC's "Mob Week," about a month ago.  I kept "The Godfather" and other fabulous film classics on tv while she and I played, for about a week.  (How wrong is that???  On a scale of 1-10, I'm pretty sure letting a 13 month old see the scene with the horse's head in the dude's bed is a 17.)

Then I started a novel while we were on a road trip.  (note: I was not driving.  We were stow-aways last week with Brad's folks on a trip to see the ever-growing McPherson clan in West Palm Beach.)  I handed Addison some "car toys" while I opened Lisa See's Shanghai Girls - FABULOUS!  When my gal finished with one toy, I passed her another, and on it went... anything for me to be able to keep reading.  I was sucked in!  I stayed up late several nights reading, and finished on the drive back home.  Then, to make matters worse, I convinced my wonderful mother-in-law to download the sequel on her Kindle so I could start it in the car.  ALSO FABULOUS!

Then I started looking at  How have I not seen this before?!?!?  Have you looked?  You should.  I don't care who you are or what your hobbies are, that is a fun site!  Yesterday I was literally on it for hours.  Before I went to bed, I'd basically designed my dream house from other people's pins!  How ridiculous.  I've got things to do around my house (walk the dog, do the laundry, ENTERTAIN ADDISON), and projects I want to get started on (a new pattern for pants for Addie, refinishing a desk, etc.), but all of these things sit un-finished or not done so I can sit and look at other people's plans.

All I'm saying is, don't call DCF on me.  My father in law threatens to do that every time Addison has a new bruise.  So, daily, haha.

We did enjoy some time with the nephews last week.  Will, Matt, and Ben started school, and we got to see a football game.  The baby, Jake, is huge and adorable and so sweet; he and Addison passed toys and spoons and germs back and forth.  Addison's new word is "Aunt B," so Britton's even more in love with our gal than before.  Every time Britton has a new kid, he's cuter and smarter than the one before... I can't wait to meet the new one that's on the way!  Maybe we'll have a little girl cousin for Addie???