Saturday, June 30, 2012

New Song

I stumbled across this verse today and fell in love with it, as I'm learning to find my song again.

Relishing the Mundane

It seems from posting all these pictures that we've been keeping busy. And we have. Kids Bowl Free. Membership to the pool. Swimming lessons. Outdoor concerts. Playdates. Summer library program. Visits with family.

But in the middle of the running, we've settled into a nice routine. Cleaning. Menu planning. Grocery shopping. Organizing. Piano lessons. Snuggling. Reading. Repeat.

I'm sure from Dayna's perspective, all we ever do around here is clean. And I confess: I am the world's worst housekeeper. I really don't like doing housework. But I do love a clean house. And so, I'm entering the world of constant housework. You know...the kind where the laundry is never done. The dishwasher always needs loaded or unloaded. The toys we just picked up are all over the floor again. (And seven-year-old toys are a lot more of a pain to pick up than toddler toys.)

This may seem like a no-brainer, but after months of just trying to keep my head above water, and relying on my amazing husband to keep these day-to-day things going, I find myself enjoying the mundane. My house still isn't clean (but it's getting there.) And with each swipe of the dustrag and each napkin I fold (oy vey, do we go through about a million napkins around here!) I find myself being blessed, and in return, blessing my family (especially that husband, who I believe is enjoying fewer trips to the laundry room.)

This may not be where God has me long-term, but for right now, I really am enjoying being a stay-at-home mom.

Jazz in June

 For the last fifteen years, we have spent at least one Tuesday night in June on the campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Good food. Good friends. Great music. Here are some pictures of our Jazz in June memories for the sweltering heat!

June Zoo Trips

 We got to take a couple of zoo trips in June. Earlier this month, we had a playdate with Dayna's best friend and her sisters. I enjoyed getting to know their mom as well. (Who says playdates are for kids, anyway?)
 Yesterday, we spent the day with Dan's parents, and his brother's family. Ruby and Dayna had a great time!
 Can you tell the giraffe statue is a hit?

 Ruby loved the train.

 Tom is just a big kid!
But we'll let him be as goofy as he wants! It was around 100 degrees, and Tom was pushing the stroller uphill while carrying Dayna...

I Love Lucy

 Dayna's Bitty Baby, Lucy decided to stay a few extra nights at Grandma and Grandpa's house. What adventures she had!

She helped make dinner.
She helped Grandma sew.
She tried on a dress for her cousin's (yet unnamed) Bitty Baby.
She helped celebrate Grandpa's birthday.

Even helped blow out the candles.
Lucy played a few rounds of Scrabble.

And enjoyed the new patio out back.

She played "Hide and Seek",
and had a playdate with the doll who has no name.
But as the week went on, she was getting homesick for her Mama.

And couldn't wait to get in the car and drive home.

You Don't Own Me

These words were immortalized in a 1963 song recorded by Lesley Gore. Can't say I know much about the song or the woman who sang it. (But I did just find out it's in the same key as Edward Elgar's Enigma piece of music ever! It also shares the first four notes...) But I've been thinking lately about things I've been owning. Or allowing to own me.

I'm a grudge-keeper. I will spin a negative comment in my head 'round and 'round and 'round until I'm dizzy. Then I'll keep spinning it.

This past school year, my sick brain has had many such comments I've allowed to slosh around in my mind:

"She's an embarrassment to the school."

"The longer she's here, the worse things will get."

"You're bossy and controlling. It will be a wonder if you'll have any friends left."

"She doesn't play well with others."

Okay...some of those aren't verbatim quotes...but the message they have been screaming at me has been loud and clear. I've let them destroy my confidence. I've let them fester like a cancer in my soul.

And now...I want to be free.

I've been going through the book "Made to Crave" with other women at church. I confess...for the first few weeks, I just wasn't getting much out of the study. I figured I had bigger issues to resolve than whether or not I was making good food choices.

But this week...a whole lot of things started to make sense. Lysa Terkeurst mentioned in her chapter "I'm Not Defined by the Numbers" a situation where someone made a careless comment at the gym. Instead of allowing that comment to fester and become cancerous, she writes "{this statement} was not life and it was not godly. Therefore, I didn't have to internalize it. I could leave it...and walk away. That statement didn't belong to me. That statement wasn't my issue...I could feed that comment and let it grow into an identity crusher; or I could see it for what it was, a careless comment." Lysa goes on to say "We can literally say to a comment or a thought that presents itself to us, 'Are you true? Are you beneficial? Are you necessary?' And if the answer is no, then we don't open the door of our heart."

So now, I'm cutting out the cancer. I'm taking those thoughts captive, bit by bit. I'm fixing my thoughts on "whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy."

And those other don't own me anymore.

While Daddy's Gone...

 The girls will play!

Dan went on a business trip earlier this month. Dayna and I made the most of it. We started with a slumber party. Even Ivy wore fancy jammies! We ate cheese puffs and watched "Freaky Friday."

I painted Dayna's nails.
 And she painted mine!
 She made a great fort, and forgot to take a picture until it was almost disassembled.
 We went bowling, and I had to prove my four strikes. This is better than a's a turkey with gravy!

 While Mom was busy knocking down pins, Daddy called...from the top of the Empire State Building.
I think we had more fun!

Up-sy Daisy

 Earlier this month, Dayna bridged from a Daisy Scout to a Brownie.

 She shared her favorite memories of Daisy Scouts (the visit to the Fire Station was particularly fun.)
 And across she went.

 Thanks so much to Mrs. Kasuske and Mrs. Earnest for being such great troop leaders.


I had the opportunity to catch up with a long-time friend this week. (No...I won't say "old" friend.) She's in town working for the US Swim Team Olympic trials. I took her to my favorite restaurant for a long, leisurely lunch on Tuesday. We had such a great time catching up...hard to believe 24 years have passed since we first met.

In the middle of our lunch, she received a series of phone calls. The fires in Colorado Springs were reaching perilously close to home. Her family was placed on voluntary evacuation. Needless to say, the rest of lunch was filled with anxiety and distraction.

I had the privilege then and there to stop and pray for her. To pray for her young family back home. To pray for her peace and calm. To pray that her trust would be unshaken.

That night, she flew home. Her family was placed on mandatory evacuation. The fires have destroyed the subdivision just to the south of her neighborhood. Less than 1/4 mile separates the damage from her home.

I don't know why these things happen, but I do know that it's no accident that after several years, we were able to have lunch together at that very moment in time. I continue to pray for her family, and for her home.

And I'm reminded that no matter what fires we face, we're not in them alone:

Isaiah 43:1-4a

But now, this is what the Lord says—
    he who created you, Jacob,
    he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
    I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
    I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
    they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
    you will not be burned;
    the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
    Cush and Seba in your stead.
Since you are precious and honored in my sight,
    and because I love you.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


We're sad the old clothespin holder doesn't work well anymore.

Our happy days together are just memories now.

So let's make a new one!

Dayna picked the fabrics. 1930's reproductions with little strawberries.

We start with a pleated skirt.

Add a waistband.

Make some shirt lapels. Doesn't it look like a cute little bowling shirt? Don't look too closely at those lapels...

Almost done, but those lapels are still bugging me.

Nothing some buttons and a ribbon can't camouflage.

Transferring the old clothespins. If only everyone had a cute little helper like this! She sure makes my life a ton easier. Love this girl!

Hanging out and ready to work.

Nothing like clothes on the line. And yes...that is a heavy fleece snowman pajama top that Dayna wore on a 95+ degree day after the swimming pool earlier this week.