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Sunday, February 28, 2010


i've taken to not wearing mascara anymore.
i've gone from dark and twisty to okay, to getting sucked down into the vortex. i'm paralyzed to what normally would bring me deep joy.
i find myself contracting into the shape of a fetus.
my kidneys are located directly behind my eyeballs. i didn't know tears could shoot out at a 90° angle from my face, but apparently they do. i'm glad i wear eyeglasses now. it protects those i come in contact with.

i'm wrestling in a big way. and i don't want to emerge completely crippled after all this is over.

i spoke to a friend yesterday and she said she wrestled with God and her issue of validation and security for 18 months.

this merger. the demands. there are so many other issues i can't even put them into words. the isolation. the hunger. the apathy. the desert. the flood. the emptiness.


i think this is even beyond a calgon moment.

making an appointment tomorrow.

and i say all this not because i am looking for sympathy. or empathy. or anything really. i'm needy, but i'm not weird that way.

i have invested in this e-world. and i may not be able to make deposits for awhile. here or anywhere else. will i have to start over from scratch? you know, that whole outta sight outta mind? it's human nature, i know.

do i have the courage to write about this journey? do i have to try to fake it because i'm striving to be thankful and joyous in all circumstances? what does being dark and twisty have to do with joy anyways?

do i have the ability to be real in a way that won't alienate the few followers i have? am i willing to be transparent that way and what's the purpose behind that anyway? why is it that i blog anyway? do i need to get a waterproof keyboard?

i'm really not a very good swimmer. i always said i have enough skill so that i won't drown. but now…
i'm not so sure.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

blessing abound… i guess.

at the risk of being overly dramatic and realizing i'm going to have a pretty tough time living up the the title of my blog, i'm going to just say that i've had better weeks. 

here's where i can find the joy.

i have a job.
i have a strong marriage.
i have kids who are thriving in school, in relationships, in Jesus.
we're not staring a life-threatening illness in the face. 
our cars are in good condition and are paid for.
our roof doesn't leak.
the ground is not shaking, our buildings stable, our drinking water is fresh and plentiful.
my toilets flush.
my freezer is full.
my washing machine is getting a workout (both kids home this weekend)
both kids are home this weekend!
i have plenty of kleenex.
my heat works.
i have contacts on order.
my future is secure. forever. for real.
i have people in my life who share my life goals and who love me.

so yeah.

counting my blessings and realizing that my cup really does run over.

i'm more blessed than i deserve.

i shall now go back and reread this list that doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of how great i have it.

face it.
pity parties are no fun, and no matter how many invitations you send out, no one really comes. or if they come, they don't stay long.

so yeah. blessed. really. i am.

so i'll be focusing on that. 

i guess.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

ashes… not such a bad thing

ever had a week where it seemed like everything you touched turned to ashes?
yeah, well, i'm having a week like that and it's only wednesday.
i've alienated my brother…
i hurt a friend's feelings because i am wounded and needy…
i buckeled under the pressure of work and went all linda blair (i'd post a picture of her, but even that just totally creeped me out worse than my own linda blair experience {LBE}) on the hubster… (who, for the record is under more stress… volatile combination there!)
i skipped youth group because i'm sleep deprived and not in full control of my emotions…
can i just say hallelujah that i can trade ashes for beauty?
i mean, really.
how awesome is it when you're having the lamest of weeks that you can leave every burden down at the foot of the cross.
i feel much lighter now.
but i'm still sleep deprived…
so as much as i want to watch the olympics, i think i have a date with my pillow.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

oh yeah? post this!

not sure how today is going to go, but it's tuesday, so i'm posting. 

are you up for the challenge? it's simple!  you can create your own here, and then click on the post-it below and head on over to supahmommy who has it all going on… on a post-it, of course!

Monday, February 22, 2010

out with the old…

out with the old…
yes, we still have our christmas lights on our trees…
although they are not still plugged in! :-)
the monkey grass looks all tired and brown, so it was time to go…
a job i have usually hated because it required all this tedious trimming. 
but i was reading in better homes and gardens that you can MOW it! 
hallelujah, what an easy way to deal with that job!!

and in with the new…
my springtime friends are about to come out an play…
crocuses (the dictionary actually lists this as an approved plural, or one could use croci)…
our garden lights soak up the sunshine which will fuel their nighttime light show…
seriously, it is absolutely amazing how a little sunshine and warmer temperatures can lift a weary soul.
and the dogs were lovin it, too. they don't take kindly to the cold temperatures and are enamored with the snow even less. needless to say they were diggin (literally)
 the warmer temps and regaled our neighbors with their voices hearalding their liberation from exile. we are looking for bark collars to preserve the sanity of ourselves and our neighbors. for small dogs, they sure can raise a ruckus. 
apparently, life is good six inches off the ground…
yep. spring is in the air. 

Saturday, February 20, 2010

good things come to those who wait

after two years of waiting, it looks like i may be in for a show.
could it be?
i don't like to celebrate before the fact, but just the fact that there are not one, but four buds on my orchid is cause for much celebration.
since the original blooms faded years ago, i've been faithfully watering.
and waiting.
and waiting.

and while i'm excited to see what beauty bursts forth from my orchid, i'll be patient.
some things are just worth waiting for.

and for you, my newer orchid that had four lovely blossoms attached when i purchased you several months ago, i'm holding out hope that you, too, will one day deliver some beauty of your own.
for now, do you mind if i divest you of your rather withered self while we wait?
and you, dear flowers, thank you for keeping my valentine blooms from being lonely. i so love splashes of color in the winter. and of course, a little sunshine does a body good.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

dead to sin

we have moved from ordinary time on the church calendar to lent, which began with ash wednesday. i don't know if' it's odd for protestants to observe ash wednesday in a demonstrative manner with ashes on the forehead, but our church does. we have an ash wednesday service complete with a time of worship followed by a message, then communion and the imposition of ashes.
so why the ashes? what is the significance? and lent? what's up with that?
i'm no theologian, so what follows is what i've gleaned from my journey thus far…

for me, ashes represent death. mourning. sin. my fallenness. my sin nature. my ability to forget who i belong to in a blink of an eye so i can turn to my god-ness and personal idol factory.
but the cross on my forehead also symbolizes life. because i belong to Jesus, i can rest in the victory of the cross. my sin separates me from a holy, perfect God. i can never atone for my sin enough to outweigh the sin i continue to live. it's a hole so deep, i can never fill it up because in shoveling, i am creating yet another hole. it's a fruitless, endless activity. i will never be good enough for God.

have mercy on me, Lord!
blot out my transgressions…
cleanse me!!

no amount of contrition and regret can make God turn a blind eye to my sin. that is counter to who God is, and his holiness would not let him.
in his infinite mercy, he answers my call with the cross at calvary.
this is Gospel Grace.
i come, repentant of my ability to screw up on a daily basis. i come humbly, admitting my sin, my self-centeredness, my unworthiness. but i must ask myself, does my heart really grieve over disappointing my heavenly father?
i come to the foot of the cross, where the skankiness of my sin meets God's wrath and His mercy.
thankfully, God gives me not what i deserve, but what i so desperately need…

reconciliation is a painful experience…yet joyous at the same time…because God is merciful. he gave his son to take on my filthy sin. he gives me a new heart and makes all things new.

to me, this season of lent is not a call to suffer as Christ suffered on the cross. it's not a contest to see who can give up the biggest vice for forty days. it's not an outward show of how much i'm sacrificing during this season. this is an opportunity for me to take a real, thoughtful look at my insides as i journey to the cross of resurrection day. it's a time to celebrate the ongoing mercy of our Lord as i go from being dead in sin to alive in Christ.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

yay for tuesdays!!

if only what was in my mind would really fit on a post-it. pretty much had to use a whole pack. this wouldn't fit:
as usual, after encountering snow AGAIN here in the south, we're all pretty much ready to road trip to pennsylvania and find that retarded gopher or whatever rodent predicts the end of spring and strangle him or maybe drown him in a bucket of suntan oil. sorry. not to hate on winter, but this is the south, danggit, and we're DONE! we've built the snowman. we sledded. heck, we even shoveled!! that was fun! buh-bye now!!
okay. i feel better now. 

now i do.
thanks for listening. now you play along, too! don't panic, you can create your own here, and then click on the post-it below and head on over to supahmommy who has it all going on… on a post-it, of course!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

olympic traditions

being together as a family for the beginning of this year's olympics was a real treat considering we're no longer really together as a family anymore.
ever since the kids were little-bitty, we always celebrated the olympics by spending as much time as possible soaking up as many olympic moments as we could before the games were finished. even on school nights, we would allow them to camp out in the living room and fall asleep watching. it became tradition.
we had other things going on this weekend, but managed to make some time to watch. so fun!
the hubster and i are back home now, and we enjoyed spending our valentine's night eating dinner and watching some moguls and figure skating.
i haven't watched as much figure skating in the past several years, but when did grabbing one's skate become such an expected move? no matter how awkward, grab it anyway? not a fan… especially in the death spiral.
at any rate, it's been a beautiful beginning, despite the tragedy of the death of the luger. the opening ceremonies were amazing,  the arial photos of vancouver are absolutely spectacular. canada's won their first home-turf gold medal, apollo ohno is on his way to being the most decorated winter olympic athlete and there's been some real great competition so far. i'm looking forward to a great couple of weeks.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

family time

spending the weekend in alabama sounded like a great thing to do. i mean they're further south than us, so it just follows they'd be warmer, right?
about 25 miles into our trip, we encountered snow. i guess this milwaukee girl has been gone too long to just elicit a "pfsh, you call that snow??" to what appeared to us to be a driving snow storm. it really didn't amount to more than decoration for the trees. the road was certainly passable and didn't pose any real danger. but i'll be honest. i do NOT like to get out in the snow. around here, it's just flirting with an accident!
thank goodness there wasn't much more to the snow. we got a late start out of town (thanks to the mountain of work both of us have been dealing with or the past several weeks) and really didn't have time to deal with traffic issues. didn't have time to stop and admire the beautiful landscape. i kept trying to take a picture, but nothing quite captured it. by the time we were heading into birmingham, the sky cleared up and we enjoyed a beautiful sunset.
we made it in to town in time for the gymnastic meet, but missed dinner. oh well, it's okay.
i'm not sure how college gymnastic meets are attended throughout the SEC because this is our first meet, but we were amazed to see students painted up, TONS of people and the same kind of crowd excitement i've come to expect at a basketball game. there were cheerleaders. indoor fireworks. crowd dancing. a kiss cam and lots of exciting crowd contests to keep everyone engaged in between events. the meet ran like a machine, the crowd enjoyed the talent (i was impressed!) and bama soundly beat the gators.

for me, the meet was really enjoyable, but to be honest, i think i enjoyed just being back with our family. having time together doesn't happen nearly as much as it used to, so when we can get together, it's really special. and what's even more fun is sharing these moments with our childrens' significant others. it's really neat to see them growing in this way and learning how to honor and cherish someone.
what  better way to celebrate valentine's weekend!