Monday, March 31, 2008

Astroid

I am just enough of a geek to find this incredibly fascinating. It always makes me smile when they find scientific evidence that backs up the Bible.

Monday Headlines

After having this post sitting here for several minutes, I can think of nothing that is the slightest bit interesting this week. Following, you will find the most boring edition of Monday Headlines, ever.

1. We did all the tax and legal stuff for Maeve this week. Now we're all legal and the IRS can take our money and stuff.

2. I took a three hour nap on Saturday. That was excellent.

3. I baked ham for dinner last night.

4. We have a sprinkling of soggy wet spring snow outside.

5. Tomorrow is the first of April. How did this happen?

6. We signed up for Blockbuster by mail. They have a plan that is two movies a month for $3.99. We couldn't rent one movie for that, and seeing as how we rarely can get movies we rent returned on time, no late fees is even more appealing. I haven't seen any new movies in forever.
Enchanted is waiting on me. :)

7. Nick is throwing a bachelor party for his good friend Luis on Friday night. He came up with some really fun ideas that are non-worrisome to fiance's. :) I suspect the kids and I will go out to eat and hang out with my parents that night, which will be fun.

So there ya go, the most boring edition ever. You can wake up now.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Nick and I were talking last night following an appt with Dr P. Dr P wants me to teach Nick how to do more things around the house to take some more stress off of me. Nick really wants to help, but he has some concerns. It will take some time for us to work out what this means for us. He already helps, especially with the girls, a whole lot.

In the midst of that conversation, I said something that surprised me. I told Nick, “I like my work. I don’t want you to do it all, even if you could.” As soon as the words were out of my mouth, an internal dialogue started. I like my work? Doing dishes, laundry, picking up toys, feeding small children? I like vacuuming, dusting, continually wiping down tables and counters? I never used to like those things.

During my Dr P appointment last night, we were talking about what it takes to be an adult, the incredible amount of things that are required of us, including sometimes giving up things we love for the good of our family. He talked about how what is required of us goes far beyond our own ability to sacrifice, and into the territory where God must give us the strength to do it. He made a remark about what I’d given up to be a mom (meaning worship ministry). I gotta say, though it feels wrong in some ways, it also felt so good to have someone acknowledge that. I miss worship ministry. I miss it deeply. I don’t yet understand the direction of my life, because I felt certain that God had led me there, and then just as easily led me away. I am doing the right thing being home with my children, but it still hurts sometimes…oftentimes…

But I like my work? I am finding there is a satisfaction that comes when you faithfully do what God has asked of you, whether the task itself brings deep joy or not. The task of worship leading brings me joy. Dishes do not. But the fact that I faithfully do the dishes because it is part of what God has asked of me, does bring me some joy. I never realized that before. Helping my children get dressed and making things for them to eat is satisfying to me. Since when? I have no idea.

I do get tired. I do get disappointed. I do need help and breaks and most importantly God. But, I like my work. Amazing.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Sick

We are sick around here again. I can't help but directly blame the fact that we all had Easter candy this weekend. We had been fighting it off until this week. Audrey has had a nasty runny nose, and Hannah woke up at 1am with a high fever and stomach ache. Her stomach seems better after DGL, probiotics and silver, but the fever remains with no other symptoms. And my thermometer is broken so I'm not exactly sure how high her fever is. She is in good spirits other than wanting to lay around so I'm sure she's okay, just feverish.

Here is where I feel torn... On the one hand, I do not want to be that mommy who never allows her kids to eat anything. I have to border on that anyway. So, when they have some candy offered to them on a special occasion, it's hard for me to say no. On the other hand, I know they get sick when they have it, pretty much every time. So my inability to say no to the candy means they have to suffer being sick. Is it more unfair to them for me to say no, or to say yes?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

How To: Kitchen Fire

My friend Julie W emailed me this video. Do you know how to put out a kitchen grease fire? This could save your life (and your home!)

video

Monday, March 24, 2008

Monday Headlines

Happy Easter, everybody! I was struck this weekend with the fact that Jesus really did forgive ALL our sin by dying on the Cross. We no longer have any condemnation in Christ. So like, hypothetically of course, if my house happened to be a mess simply because I was lazy...I am forgiven. Now go and sin no more. Heh.

1. I got my piano tuned this morning. Apparentely the people who have tuned my piano (which was given to me about 2 years ago-that's another story) have been rather lazy. It was never tuned to A 440, just to itself. Therefore it took my poor piano tuner 2 hours to get it right. I always knew it was flat, but since we've moved it twice since it's been tuned, I just assumed that was the deal. Anyway, it sounds better than it ever has! Yay! Now my students and I can play along to recordings, something I love to do in lessons.

2. It's nice outside today. I have the kitchen window open and Moses the cat is sitting in it, looking outside. I can't wait for nice weather!

3. College friends were here Friday night and left before we woke up Saturday morning. It was so fun to visit with them, and in spite of my fears, were very laid back and patient with our kiddos. We ended up hanging out here at home and putting the kids to bed. We stayed up late telling old college stories. Good times. Funny memories.

4. Church was so fun yesterday. We got to sing in choir for two of the three services, and the illustrated sermon that used scenes from our long-running Easter production was very powerful with our new pastor's interpretation. Our church just finished a teaching series on Grace, and with that in the background, the story of the resurrection was fresh and relevant as ever.

5. We have a relatively quiet week this week. I'm hoping to work on my piano curriculum and some things for Maeve.

6. Flylady is helping me so much. You know that feeling that you get when you know you need to clean the house and you just don't know where to start? This is a system you can follow that teaches you where to start. I don't do all of it. I'm one of those rebellious ones who refuses, in spite of everything she says, to wear shoes all day. But the principle, the heart of the thing is really helping me.

7. High school reunion planning is getting irritating. We can't find anything affordable AND classy. It is very lame. Plus, our high school seems to think we are weird for even wanting to have a real reunion. They don't even know who to have us talk to for questions we have - can we get a tour of the school? Can we get contact info for our old teachers? Who knows, really? Arg. Any brilliant ideas? We're back at square one this morning. We're even willing to totally change the date.

Alrighty. I'm off to make lunch and play my piano. :)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Nothing Important

I have no motivation today whatsoever.

We have a friend from ORU coming to town today. He's bringing his girlfriend along. He's staying with us and she's staying at my parents about 10 minutes away. What she doesn't know is that tomorrow morning he's taking her hiking and he's going to propose. Tee hee.

In spite of the fact that I'm looking forward to seeing them, I have absolutely no motivation to straighten my house today. Nor do I want to get myself ready. Nor do I want to try to keep the girls happy at a restaurant while we try to socialize. These kinds of visits are not what they were when we were child-less, and I don't expect child-less people to fully understand what they require of us. No offense intended to the child-less out there... I guess I'm just kinda tired and I haven't felt very good this week.

My parents are taking my youngest sister to California on Thursday for Spring Break. I wish we could go. My 19 year old brother just got his first job. He starts Monday. He is a computer whiz, and will be making more money than he will know what to do with, especially since he still lives at home. I'm so excited for him. He's the nicest guy.

We went to choir last night, and I bought a cd from the wife of my former boss when I worked as a worship ministry secretary. They now go to our church, and their son (who was about 7 when I worked for them) just put together this little demo cd with his friend. I'm really impressed! There's nothing there yet, but their website will be here. They did all the singing and played all the instruments themselves.

The weeks have been flying by. I can't believe it's Good Friday and Easter is this weekend. I wish there was a way to get the message of this week deeper into my heart. I feel like I've heard it so many times that it fails to have the impact I still want it to have. I used to love being involved in the huge Easter production at church, because after the 50th time through the story, it actually started to get in. That day will come again.

Life seems...complicated lately. We've been talking about our long-term goals around here. This raises more questions than it brings answers.

I finally did it - I weaned Audrey last week. Almost immediately I have no appetite whatsoever. This amazes me, and further underlines how many calories it takes to do that.

Guess I'll go do something productive.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Have you ever noticed...

Those little stickers on the packages of Pampers stuff? You can actually go on their website and enter in the codes and get points toward free stuff. Nifty, huh?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

While I'm at it...

Lisa Bevere posted a link to this interview on her myspace page. Interesting and heart-breaking.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Honoring Our Children

I've been reading John Bevere's book Honor's Reward this week. Incidentally, Liz T and I were at the filming of one of John's curriculum DVDs for this book. That was pretty cool. I feel like I always say this, but seriously, this message could change your life.

He sets up from Scripture the fact that we are commanded by God to honor those in authority over us, those who are our peers, and those who are under our authority. Then, he spends the rest of the book explaining how to walk that out and telling incredible stories about how God has blessed him, his family, and those he knows that practice this principle.

If you've never read a John Bevere book, it's somewhat like a spiritual journey. The thing about this book that struck me was how pervasive dishonor is in our culture. We're taught to dishonor parents, teachers, political figures, doctors, our children, old people, young people, people who mess up, people who seem too "clean." The list goes on and on. John, in his straightforward way, explains how that goes against what God has asked us to do as Christians and therefore we miss the good life that comes when we live life the way our creator told us best works. (Sorry - hope you can follow that sentence.)

It's a simple concept, really, when you honor somebody they do everything they can for you. So does God, because when you honor people, you're really honoring God. You can't do it in a phony way, because people see right through that, but if you can really honor people from your heart, you recieve blessings. It's a spiritual principle.

Onto honoring our children.... I've been thinking about this. Humans have immortal spirits - they will never die. They will live forever either in Heaven or Hell. So, we all are, in a sense, ageless. Our children are placed by God under our authority to be trained and encouraged as they grow, but their spirits are just a valuable when they are 2 as when they are 45. Therefore, they are worthy of the same respect we would pay a peer. That doesn't mean we are released from our responsibility to them - to care for their needs, to train them in the way they should go, to give them the love and affection they need. I think it clarifies that responsibility all the more! However, we as moms know (and have probably dished out) discipline that honors and discipline that dishonors our children.

I am more convinced than I've ever been that there is no excuse whatsoever for demeaning our children. I've just been through three or four days of constant temper tantrums with Hannah. They were hard. But after understanding this message, and because of the fear of God that is in my heart, I will never treat my children in a dishonoring way again. And if I do, I will ask their forgiveness and God's forgiveness.

Thinking through all of this, I have realized some hard feelings I had toward Hannah that I never realized before. I have put expectations on her that were unfair, and then been upset when she did not fulfill them. I had a long talk with God about this, and my feelings toward her are different right now, today, than I think they've ever been. God can change our hearts - we are only good at putting on fascades that don't hold up under pressure.

This is still new and taking hold in my heart, but I feel like it is lifechanging. I highly recommend you get the book, and begin praying (as I am) for a heart that honors people.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Monday Headlines

So, I've decided that calling what I do here every Monday "highlights" is rather a misnomer. Some of them are highlights, others are just stuff that happened. Thus, headlines.

Here we go:

1. No students this week. Weird.

2. ORU basketball is in the championship. Honestly, if my husband didn't care so much about this, I wouldn't probably even know it had happened. But since it did, it's kind fun, I guess. They're actually playing in Denver on Thursday afternoon. Nick is plotting to go. We'll see what tickets cost.

3. We're potty-training Hannah. She'll be 3 next month. It's time. I have been really lazy about this, honestly. The thought of having to run to some NAASTY public bathroom anytime we're out is not my idea of a good time. Still, ya gotta do what ya gotta do. She's currently sitting on the couch in Elmo panties. This worries me.

4. I have to go get fillings at the dentist tomorrow. Lame. My dentist sure is good though.

5. We were supposed to get 5-10 inches of snow last night. We got about 2...maybe.

6. We finished the choir recording over the weekend. Have I mentioned how much fun it is to do that? The music, the challenge of learning something on the spot and singing it perfectly, the people, listening to Pastor Ross be silly and profound almost simultaneously, and God. I can't think of a better way to spend a weekend. Now we need a relaxing week, and some time with the girls.

7. I can't believe I'm about to say this...we got the coolest litter box for our cat. It looks like a big rubbermaid storage tub with a hole cut in the top. There is physically no way he will throw litter all over my house ever again. I cannot express to you what a relief this is. And he seems to like it.

8. It looks like we're going to plan our 10 year high school reunion in the top floor of a bar. I can't decide what I think about this, especially since I graduated from a Christian high school. If we lived in Europe it wouldn't bother me a bit, so it's more about the way people see it than a problem I actually have with the location or alcohol itself. It's super cheap and a good way to have a fun night with people from high school without having to charge $50 or more per person. I'm just not sure that's a good enough reason.

Alright. Time to get started on my flylady stuff for the day. I'm supposed to go dust the light fixture in the bathroom. Neato.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Random

I have nothing much to say this week. Honestly, I've been a little down. Sometimes it begins to look like the things you wish would change about your life will never change and there's nothing you can do about it. These things being debt, the fact that I never exercise and therefore have little/no energy, my messy house, etc.

That said, I have bullet points that are fun:

  • I'm reading about five new books, which include Convenant Marriage (we're reading this together), C.S. Lewis' The Seeing Eye, John Bevere's Honor's Reward, Better Than Beauty (from the discount shelves at B&N), Glenn Packiam's Butterfly in Brazil, and still working on Fight Like a Girl and QBQ.
  • Recording tonight. Yay!
  • It just quit snowing after dumping about 4 inches of heavy, wet spring snow on us this morning
  • Audrey sings Veggie Tales, ABC's, Twinkle Twinkle, Calliou, and probably other songs I can't think of. Hilariously. Recognizably! Plus several worship songs.
  • My little Hannah will be three next month. How did this happen?]
  • Hannah got some gluten yesterday and although it's obvious that her stomach hurts, she seems emotionally okay so far. Thanks for the prayers, guys.
  • I have a whole week off from teaching, between School of Worship being done with the module, and other students out of town this week.
  • It's Friday. How did that happen?
  • Josh gave me a new song to put on repeat. This song alone may change my mood.

That's all I can think of at the moment.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Music: Sara Bareilles

A girl named Sara that plays the piano and sings at the top of her lungs. Huh.

This is what I'm listening to today. I saw a music video of hers as I was flipping through channels at the hotel this weekend. Her latest release is "River," a remake of the song that Meg Ryan quotes in "You've Got Mail." I've never actually heard the song before, but I've been saying the lines from the movie.

I'm going to the nut shop, where it's fun!

Love that movie.

Anyway. Love Sara's music.

Hope your mango's ripe!

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Homeschooling Thing

In case anybody cares about my thoughts, I thought I'd give them. Heehee.

In case you've been living under a rock somewhere, a judge in California ruled last week that it was illegal for children to be taught by teachers without teaching credentials. Therefore, the 166,000 kids who are being homeschooled there are suddenly, technically, truants.

Two things:

1. I don't think we've heard the end of this yet. Schwarzenegger seems fully intent on fixing the whole issue so that parents can homeschool.

2. Even if the ruling stands, parents can probably get away with hiring credentialed teachers to help plan lessons and still keep their kids home if they want to. Actually, this is how my parents did it to comply with California law (which hasn't changed at all, this is just a new interpretation) starting in 1985.

But, when I first heard about this it was frightening to me anyway. I think there may very well come a day when we as parents aren't allowed to make the decisions we feel are best for our children - in the U.S. and in other countries. We'll have to decide at that time if we want to move or break the law, following what God asks us to do rather than what man asks us to do. It's not really the issue of homeschooling that bothers me, because I do believe it is possible for children to be well educated in the public schools (not easy everywhere, but definitely possible.) It's more the issue of a parents' right to choose how their child will be raised. How much does the government get to tell us is right for our kids? Do they get to tell us how to feed them? Clothe them? How much tv they can/should watch? If we can teach them our faith? Which kids they can be friends with? I mean, how far does it go?

The conclusion I have come to is this: Today, I can raise my children to fear God. I can teach them whatever I know is best. I can love them and do what I know is the absolute best for them. Tomorrow is not here yet, and God is already there. So for today I will be faithful to seek God and train my children in the way they should go. Easier said than done, and I will still keep an eye on California. But this doesn't surprise God, and He is directing those in authority exactly as He pleases. (Prov 21:1) We can trust God to direct us. He loves our kids more than we do.

Monday Highlights

1. Glad to be home. Our trip was good, we enjoyed the girls, had a comfortable place to stay, and everything went fine. But I'm glad to be home.

2. This week seems like it will be busy with everything and nothing. More choir recording this weekend. Small groups. More Maeve Bridal stuff. (New pics are going on the website soon!) I have 5 (count 'em) bags of stuff we brought home from Nebraska sitting in my dining room, all of which I must find new places for.

3. It's supposed to be in the 50's all week. This makes me happy.

4. I bought a gluten-free chocolate cake mix and some egg substitute. It's time. Sometimes you gotta have a little cake...or a lot. Ha.

5. We visited a little antique shop on our way out of Kearney yesterday. I bought 3 handkerchiefs with hand-embroidered corners and an old key for $6. Silly little things, but they made me smile, and it's nice to have something from there. Any ideas what I could do with them?

6. Minor annoyance that I hope will not become bigger...our neighbor's dog keeps getting out. It looks an awful lot like a pit bull, although I've never been around one before so I'm not positive. It comes over into our driveway area and barks. Thursday night it was going for our ankles like it was going to bite us. The neighbor told Nick several weeks ago that they've been trying to get rid of it because it gets out no matter what they do to keep it fenced. That's all well and good, but that means it could easily get Into our yard. Thus, we don't feel all that safe right now. We really don't want to call the Humane Society because we don't want to make enemies, but we've tried talking to the neighbors and they don't seem to be able to do anything about it. Hmmm...

Well, Hannah's yelling at me from her room where she's supposed to be napping, and my messy house calls.

What are your highlights this week?

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Helen Keller




Have you seen this new picture of Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan that they just found?

I'm fascinated.

Like probably pretty much everybody, I read a biography of Helen Keller as a child. Did you remember that Sullivan was 20 years old when she started working with Keller? I didn't. As I look at the picture though, I have such deep questions.

What inspired this young girl to be so devoted to this child? I have a hard time being that devoted to my own children sometimes!

How did she see potential in a child who couldn't see or hear? Keller was angry, spoiled, hateful. She would hit and kick all the time. I give up on people far too quickly.

Keller is a testimony to being believed in. I mean, if someone had not believed she could learn, she would not have become the scholar she became. I'm just very baffled and inspired by Sullivan's devotion.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Who I Am In Christ

Years ago, they handed this out at church. I have hung onto it, and I thought I'd share it. Actually, what I do with this is put it inside a big ziplock bag and stick it to the wall of my shower. Then I read it every day.

Sometimes I can't get all the way through it because I become so overwhelmed with the difference between what Christ made me with His death, and what I actually live out. I force myself to finish it anyway. This is truth that will transform us.

This is not an end in itself, it is only the beginning. If we understand that our insecurities and sin have no control over us anymore because of Christ, we are then free to live for the good of others, like Kim's post that I linked to earlier. Insecurity and emotional pain are (usually) a result of forgetting who we are and wallowing in our own sin nature and selfishness. I'm preaching to myself here!

Let's quit that.

Focus

Preach it, Kim!

Housekeeping

The same methods never work forever.

This principle is underlined for me every time the girls learn something new and what worked before no longer works.

It's also true of things like how I clean house.

Back when Hannah was a baby, I discovered Flylady.net. I had no idea how to systematically keep a house clean, so this was a revelation. I did it for a while, and had a sparkling clean house. It works, it really does.

However, I am a closet perfectionist, and I began to beat myself up for not fulfilling what I was "supposed to." Life was not easy after Audrey was born, since I had a newborn and a 16 month old. I didn't cut myself enough slack. So I burnt out, big time.

When we moved to this house I cleaned the whole thing from top to bottom because it had not been cleaned well after the former renter. Gross. It was Naaasty. But, as any of you who live in old houses will agree, old houses don't clean all that well. You can clean them and clean them and they still look dirty. So, that provided further discouragement for me. Over the past couple of months, I have to admit that I gave up.

Now, I'm a perfectionist, as I said, so I don't think we were living in filth, but I did as little as I could stand. Thus the talk on Monday of a housekeeper. However, after some soul-searching, I figured out that what I need is not a housekeeper or a new house, but a new attitude. We are living here so we can get out of debt, because we believe that's what God wants us to do.

So, I need to figure out how to keep my house pleasant to live in, AND help us get out of debt.

I'm going back to flylady. The difference is, I'm learning to give myself, and others, grace. Flylady has some great systems that WORK. But, if I don't get them all done everyday, I have not failed my family, and I understand that now.

So, here are some new habits I'm starting:
Start the dishwasher before I go to bed each night
Put dirty dishes directly into the dishwasher during the day
Wipe down the bathroom counter and mirror, and brush out the toilet after I get ready

This is a good start. If I keep the kitchen counters clean, I might actually get to other things like, oh, sweeping the floor.

What works for you guys?

Monday, March 3, 2008

Traveling

Nick grew up in a town of 30,000 people called Kearney, in Nebraska. Life is simple there. Nebraska has a funny culture - people talk about leaving the state as if they're going to some alien planet. Honestly? They kinda are... :) People live quiet lives. They farm, they attend their church, they do their job...

There is, as you might expect, a shortage of health food stores. And restaurants with gluten free menus. There is a tiny health food store in Kearney called "The Health Barn." It's literally a red barn in the middle of town. There's only two other health food stores in the state, as of the last research I did.

Last time we went, I literally planned every meal for Hannah for the whole time we were there. Breakfast was cooked-at-home sausage warmed in the microwave. Lunch was turkey sandwiches. Dinner was...I can't even remember.

One thing they do have in Kearney, is fast-food. Everywhere. Everything you can think of. So, last night I started looking up gluten-free fast food. Several thoughts here...first, gross. Second, relief. Did you know that McDonald's, Wendy's, Taco Bell, Sonic, Hardee's, Chick-fil-a, and Burger King all have gluten free information online?

Now, I do not intend to feed my kids fast food for every meal while we're there. But once or twice would be okay, seeing as how they've never had it before in their lives. And, I'm dealing with a new challenge because after seeing Dr P last weekend, I am now eating gluten free, egg free, dairy free, soy free and yeast free. Amazingly? I can get pretty close even with fast food. Most fast-food places even have gluten-free fries, because they only cook fries in them, not other fried foods.

So, I can plan a couple of meals a day, and we can still eat out with Nick's family (because they like to). Now I just have to stomach the fact that I actually know what's in all that "food."

Monday Highlights

I just typed in the title, and for some reason hit enter. This resulted in publishing a post that only says "Monday Highlights." Nice.

1. Audrey has taken to singing Twinkle Twinkle. It is so cute.

2. We skipped pretty much everything this weekend. We were wiped out, and we had a pretty decent snowstorm yesterday. Nick and I got some great time together.

3. We're leaving to go to Nebraska to see Nick's family Friday through Sunday.

4. We spent Thursday and Friday night this week working on the recording with the choir. This week it amounted to singing through the melody of all of the songs, while Pastor Ross danced around on stage like a nut, trying to keep us all smiling. There's a big difference between what you hear live and what you hear when something is recorded, so many corrections have to be made to translate a great live worship night into a great worship cd. After being moved, I ended up in the front row, right under the mic. Part fun, part nerve-wracking.

5. I have a confession to make: I'm hiring a housekeeper. We will do every other week at the most, and maybe just once a month because of money, but I'm doing it. I have mixed feelings about this, because on the one hand I feel stupid for not being able to keep the bathroom clean. On the other hand, we can afford it (we're talking $30-40 per cleaning, because of how small our house is), and I would much rather pay somebody to do it than live in a pig pen, or quit something else I'm doing. Dobson, in his book "What Wives Wish Their Husbands Knew About Women" says that mothers of young children should always have their houses cleaned, and money should be budgeted for it every month. I like that. :)

6. I'm making a whole chicken in the crockpot for dinner tonight, to be served with baked sweet potatoes. Yummy.

7. Mom's group at Joanna's on Thursday was really fun. We had 6 moms and 11 children! This is the vision I've always had for it, and I'm so excited to see it growing.

8. Audrey is almost weaned...we're down to one nursing a day, at bedtime. Seeing as how she would have totally gone to bed without it last night and the night before, we're working mostly with Mommy's attachment at this point. Why is it so hard to let kids grow up? My baby is a toddler now...she's currently pushing the doll stroller around the house with about 6 dolls in it. She gets really frustrated when she runs into something and they all fall out because there's so many. Pretty funny.

What are your highlights?

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Fun Links

Jess posted a whole blog full of links. These are my favorites.

Reflexology map - these are the points on your feet you can rub to benefit different body parts, or you can find where the "knots" on your feet are, and figure out what the problem is. There's a link to the hand map also. Fascinating.

Toddler Dress from Man's dress shirt - I am so going to do this.

Cheap Natural Cleaning supplies - I can always use new combinations of the standard baking soda, vinegar and tea tree oil. :)

Population - I haven't read much of this site yet, but it looks like the concept of overpopulation is another one of those stupid ideas with no basis in reality.

I HATE LEFTOVERS - Ideas to make eating leftovers a little more palatable. Gross. Maybe this would help.

Have you found any fun links recently?

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Book Review (you gotta have this one)

I've been reading Focus on the Family's Complete book of Baby and Child Care. Do not pass go, do not collect $200, and buy this book. Right now.

Heh.

OK, maybe not. But it's so good!

Someone sent me a copy of "What to Expect When You're Expecting" while I was pregnant with Hannah. About two chapters in, panic was rising, and I put it down and picked it up again only out of desire for more punishment. As far as I can tell, those books (the children's ones too - which other people gave me) go something like this: "You have a headache. It could be this rare liver disorder and you'll be dead in two weeks, along with your baby. ...Or, maybe you need to drink some water. You better call your doctor." They are SO fear based!

Maybe that's why this book is so refreshing to me. It addresses physical, disciplinary, spiritual, and relational issues all in one place, for pre-birth through preteen. They can't afford to be as thorough as you might like because it's just one book rather than a series, but it sure answered lots of my questions. It also cross-references things, like if you're reading about disciplinary problems, it might refer you to a section about health/nutrition/sleep to help you figure out what needs to be done for your child. There is also lots of encouragement for weary parents.

Highly recommended. And actually, Hannah and I have had a much better week this week because of some things I've been missing that this book reminded me of. I'm weaning Audrey, so she's just cranky, but that's another story. :)