Thursday, July 31, 2008


Um, so I think we're getting a dog.

I was talking to my landlord last night, and in the course of the conversation it came up that we were wanting a dog but waiting to have the money for the deposit, at which point she tells me that we are the best renters they've ever had in 10 years, that we are the only renters they've ever not had the neighbors call to complain about, and that we should just go ahead and get our dog. She's not worried about us.

So, went online and started looking. Found this test, which tells you which kind of dog would be right for you. The first one on my list was a toy poodle. Yeah. NO. The fourth one on the list was a lab. I have ALWAYS loved chocolate labs. Then I went on Craig's list and found a 5 year old male chocolate lab whose family doesn't have time to take care of him anymore. He's free. We're going to go see him soon. It's all rather fast, but it makes perfect sense! I'm very excited to have a buddy for my kids - and for me!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


You Are An ENTP

The Visionary

You are charming, outgoing, friendly. You make a good first impression.

You possess good negotiating skills and can convince anyone of anything.

Happy to be the center of attention, you love to tell stories and show off.

You're very clever, but not disciplined enough to do well in structured environments.

In love, you see everything as a grand adventure. You enjoy taking risks for love.

And if things don't work out, you're usually not too much worse for the wear!

You would make a great entrepreneur, marketing executive, or actor.

At work, you need a lot of freedom to pursue your own path and vision.

How you see yourself: Analytical, creative, and peaceful

When other people don't get you, they see you as: Detached, wishy-washy, and superficial

What's Your Personality Type?

I think this is incredibly accurate for who I am right now. I think people's personalities change some in different life situations, and as they mature. But this is definitely where I'm at.

Hat tip to Flo.

Grocery Shopping and Contentment

My life is very different from this blogger's, and therefore we do not always agree. But, I love her post today. This is how I am trying to approach our grocery shopping now. You can feel the place of peace and trust that she speaks from, even as you read her words.

She touches on something I've been pondering as I slowly read John Bevere's "Drawing Near." Many times when we are unhappy or restless, what we're craving is intimacy with God. But instead of seeking God for our fulfillment, it's easy to become disappointed with God in some way, and sometimes it's hard to believe we will find what we need there, or maybe we just don't want to slow down enough to spend the time. So instead, we fill our spirits with spiritual "junk food," and eat, or shop, or watch tv, or read away the desire. We've filled ourselves up, but it doesn't satisfy.

When Nick and I went away overnight, we had bought tickets to see a movie in a few minutes, but I was starving. We walked several blocks downtown, trying to find something relatively cheap that would be gluten-free. After having no luck, I settled on Taco Bell, because there are a couple of menu items with some protein that I know to be gluten free. I'm not used to eating that kind of food anymore, and as I ate it, I could totally sense that it was filling my stomach, but not nourishing me. I'm so used to nourishing food that I could tell the difference!

Being a mom is hard. Sometimes I'm tempted to do whatever it takes to survive. But I don't want to just survive - I want to thrive! I wonder if life will always be a struggle because I refuse to resign myself to "good enough." But I can't bring myself to believe that good enough, "junk food," is okay for us.

I was challenged by an email I got yesterday from a mom looking to join our mom's group. She
said she was, "looking to get connected with other young moms in the area who are walking with the Lord in an intimate way and looking for other women to share life with." A simple statement, and yet it communicates so much. She doesn't just want to be with other women, she wants real deep connection with Godly women who will encourage her in her walk with God. Oh, that we can be that for each other!

What do you ladies think about this?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Monday Headlines

1. Spent a LONG time on the phone with a Qwest customer service guy this morning. All I really needed to do was reboot my computer and it worked, but my computer ran so slowly (I did buy it in...2001?) that he took it upon himself to walk me through cleaning out the temp files and while we waited, entertained me with stories. Seems he lives in the Philippines. He told me in broken English about how they work the night shift to provide customer service to the U.S. and then they sleep during the day, about the 70 year old man with a Macbook ("Why does he have a Macbook?"), about how it takes 30 minutes to drive across his country at night but 3 hours during the day, about the man who called tech support and after being passed from agent to agent (I assume because they are very difficult to understand), started yelling that he was going to bomb all of India. It was very entertaining and enlightening really. He asked me how far Colorado was from Arizona, and was amazed when I told him my friend in Phoenix is 18 hours away, going 75 miles per hour. I love America, and I also love a reminder that ours isn't the only way of life in the world.

2. My wisdom teeth (or rather, the holes left from them) hurt. The guy Nick works with had his out at 28, and said he had to take a week off work. Doesn't really surprise me. But I'm making it. I'm able to eat now, and the swelling seems to be down some today. Can I teach this afternoon - that is the question.

3. Holly and I have an interesting meeting Wednesday night. A woman called me who is a fashion designer and needs a technical designer (also known as a pattern-maker). Holly is excited to maybe design the patterns for the girl's sketches, and maybe our seamstress can sew them. A fun little diversion for us until our Bridal Fair on Oct 5th, of course, you never know where the next big opportunity will come from. Maybe this girl is the next big designer?

4. My Dad is speaking tonight at a meeting of a couple hundred local Christian business owners. Kinda neat - I'm looking forward to hearing him.

5. Everything this week feels up in the air - between getting well from my surgery and maybe keeping little Kadence if/when her mommy goes into labor, I'm committing to very little. :)

6. Hannah seems to be potty-training herself. She goes into the bathroom, takes her diaper off, goes on the potty chair, puts a pull-up on, and then comes asking for a sticker. She doesn't want me to help - she wants to do it. Very strange, but if that's what works. Now if we could convince Audrey to follow along. SO tired of buying diapers.

7. I'm toying with the idea of starting another project. Heh. I want to finish my degree. I only have about 40 hours left to graduate from ORU. In theory, I could take some classes here and then we could move down to Tulsa next fall for 1 school year, Nick could work from home, and I could finish my degree. Are we nuts? Probably. LOTS of things would have to work perfectly for this to happen. No roadblocks found during my research thus far, however.

8. Hannah learned how to turn on DVD's for herself. They have this Blue's Clues DVD that she's been putting on OVER and OVER. Who gets paid to write songs for kids shows? And Why?

9. I love summer. I just wanted to say that. The warm weather feels SO good to me. Since we live in a more rural area, we've been leaving our windows open 24/7, and it just feels so good.

Better get started on my disaster area the way - I love how many of you have started your own version of updates. :)

Sunday, July 27, 2008


This is a complaining post. I warned you.

So, got my wisdom teeth out Friday. Apart from bursting into tears when they put the monitoring stuff on me and the IV in, it was fairly uneventful. They took me out to the car in a wheelchair and Nick drove me home. Then I slept on the couch most of the day while my mom took care of the kids. I didn't even fill my pain medication prescription - 2 Advil was good enough.

Yesterday I laid in bed and watched tv all day. Nick took care of the girls. Took 2 Advil at a time all day again.

Today Nick took the kids to church and I stayed home and did little jobs as I was able. Tried to cut down on the Advil because it always makes me dizzy (still far better than the
Vicodin they prescribed would have been - they actually prescribed me an anti-nausea med to go with the pain med they prescribed. Good grief.) Did fine most of the day.

Tonight I was completely off Advil and it hurts pretty much the worst that it has. Just took some more Advil. I'm supposed to be better today and if I'm not then it could mean dry socket, which he said my age and body type are high risk for. Then I have to go BACK to the doc and have more meds. Plus my mom leaves Tuesday for CA so I won't have extra help if I need it.
Granted, this is the first time I've been completely off medication, so it's hard to tell if I'm better or not. Either way, I'm feeling pretty cranky.

I think I probably just tried to be too tough too fast. I'll go back on Advil and be fine. Right? *Sigh*

Edited: Just reread the "Post-op care instructions."
"Prescribed pain medications are generally needed during the first day or two. After that ibuprofen or Tylenol is generally sufficient."

Heh. Yeah. Tried to be too brave. I'll be fine. ;)

Saturday, July 26, 2008


I can't decide whether this is hysterical, or so close to home it's just plain creepy...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

4 Years Ago Today

4 years ago today, Nick and I got married in the old barn on the property where my parents were living. The wedding was supposed to have been outside, but it was the coldest July day in Colorado Springs history - the high was 55 degrees and it rained all morning.

It's quite an adventure, this journey we're on. I love you, Nick. Thanks for being so warm and caring, for being a wonderful father to our daughters, for working so hard and providing for our family, for being goofy and fun when I need to quit taking myself too seriously, for loving me no matter what. I am so excited to pursue our dreams together. You're my favorite.

Saving Money on Organic Food

I don't know about you, but around here we're trying desperately to save money on food. I found this article on Dr Mercola's site this morning. There's a link to this wallet guide that tells which produce is most important to buy organic, and which is fairly safe to buy conventional. Pretty nifty!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Email Cleanup

Is your inbox overflowing with junk? I came across this site today. You actually have to pay for some of it, but just reading the posts on the front page was motivating to me. I set up filters on my email, wrote a few templates, and even started cleaning up the garage (15 minutes is a start!) as a result. Yay for getting rid of time-wasters and procrastinating so you can have more fun and focus on really important things!

Monday Headlines

1. On Thursday night, Nick and I went on our first overnight date since Hannah was born. My mom kept the girls, and we went to a 4-star hotel in downtown Denver that we got a deal on from They have this thing where you can see how many stars a hotel gets, and roughly where it is, and then you pay a low price before you get to see what hotel it is. For the hotel we stayed in, the price was nearly 1/3 of what the going price on the hotel's site was! Pretty good deal! It was very fun and relaxing. We walked around at the 16th street mall - this huge outdoor 10 or 12 block area full of shops. It was nice to have a change of scenery and have some time together.

2. We saw Get Smart while we were out Thursday. I've decided I like Anne Hathaway. She sure was funny in it, as was of course, that guy from the Office whose name I can never remember.

3. We went to the swim beach (it's lake water with sand around it) with our small group on Saturday. So fun! It was blazing hot, and I think everyone there came home sunburnt. The kids had a blast playing together in the water.

4. Wisdom teeth on Friday. Dun, dun, dun. Seriously, I'm having to remind myself that my life will not be over on Friday. I'm so lame about this kind of thing.

5. We have a first fitting for another Maeve gown on Wednesday. This gown should be done by the middle of August. It's a strapless gown with a high waist and a wide black sash that ties in a soft bow and trails to the floor in back.

6. We have had two requests for Maeve quotes just this week. One of them is for a size 20 wedding gown. I had never thought about this before, but a size 20 person wouldn't even be able to try on gowns at a bridal shop. Interesting market for plus size women have a wedding gown they love!

7. Going to Denver with my sister Holly tomorrow to check out Denver Fabrics for Maeve, and stop by Dr P's office for this stuff he says will help me heal from my wisdom teeth faster. It's homeopathic and herbal anti-inflammatory stuff called Pro-Trauma. He says to take it for two days before and four days after my surgery.

8. I have a new piano student starting today. I started advertising on Facebook for new students who want to learn worship piano. I should start another one next week too. Pretty exciting. Wish I had a better area to teach in, that's the only thing. Someday I'll have a nice studio with a piano and keyboard and computer and filing cabinet so I can look organized, and a bookcase. I know exactly what it would look like.

9. I played at the Presbyterian church again yesterday. The pastor said to me, "You're becoming part of the family!" I'm not scheduled again for a while, but I finally have their service flow down. It was almost second nature yesterday. Wish I could play somewhere more often...

10. Listening to Michael Rossback today. Some old ORU friends have been talking about him lately, which is funny, because he's from New Life. Yay for him! Gaining a following, I guess!

Alright. Time to go do something productive.

Friday, July 18, 2008

"Famous" Worship Leaders

We got the opportunity to see Matt Redman lead worship at the Desperation Youth Conference tonight. He is a huge hero of mine. I was so excited to see him actually play. I've never heard of him being in the US to play, and I just read that wikipedia article that says he has just moved over here from England. Cool! His gentle voice and manner has this affect on people, taking them to a place with God that is unique. I have this whole theory about how different worship leaders take people to different places with God, because they have had different aspects of God revealed to them. But, that's a post for another day.

As I thought about the excitement I felt to see this man play worship songs, it struck me as a little weird at first. What is the job of a worship leader, but to point to God? If the worship leader becomes famous, does that mean they have failed in their attempt to bring God glory? Some people would say yes, I suppose. It's not about the musicians. I know. Sort of.

Here's the thing though: I don't think God has a problem with heroes. He told the story of so many of them in the Bible! People like David, Noah, Joseph, Paul, Esther...the list goes on and on. They were just people too! It is GOOD to have people to look up to. Looking up to someone does not make them God. They are still human, and they will fail us. However, Matt Redman has become known because he has consistently sought God through the years and therefore has been able to write genuine songs that express a person's heart to God, with a musical style that opens hearts. If he did not daily make the decision to do that, he would not be where he is today.

I also think of Glenn Packiam, who today posted that he is leaving Desperation Band. Sad - his songs are some of my favorites, and his worship leading is a favorite as well - and yet exciting that he is taking another step toward what he feels called to do. Glenn, Jared, and Jon are more examples of men who have daily made the decision to follow Christ. People who make that decision ARE WORTHY OF BEING HONORED. Not worshiped, but honored. And God is honored through the honoring of Godly people.

I just couldn't get this concept out of my head tonight. I was blessed to be in the presence of God tonight, under Matt Redman's leadership. I was also blessed to be in Matt Redman's presence.

More Pictures

We watched Zach and Jenna for an evening a few weeks ago. These are some of our kids' best friends. They had so much fun playing together and looked so cute!

Posted by Picasa

Nick's Birthday

I have a ton of pictures from the past month or so, and I'm just getting around to posting them. This was Nick's birthday. Hannah especially enjoyed the chocolate cake. :)

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Guitar Hero

I couldn't resist this one...

My cousin Chad works for Guitar Hero. He's actually the one who programs the jewels to match the music, as well as the light shows in the background. I grew up playing with this kid. It cracks me up to watch this, and this. (He's the guitar player in both)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Monday Headlines

1. The wedding went fine this weekend, considering. The bride and groom were really neat people who really seem to love God and each other. They just weren't terribly organized. :) So, I found out what I was going to play on Tuesday, they added two worship songs on Wednesday, and then Friday at the rehearsal, they added a guitar player to the worship songs. It felt pretty thrown together for me, and I hope it sounded good for them. I felt a bit like a mess. I played basically for two hours. My forearms are sunburnt. :)

2. The housing saga continues. We thought we had found a great house, but after plugging the numbers into our budget, we said, "We must be nuts." That's not the house. The required 30 day notice is fast approaching, and our landlord had asked for 45 day notice if we could give it to her. Yeah. That's today. At this point I'm hoping we don't end up in my parents' basement.

3. My sister Holly is out of town this week and I'm hoping to get lots of Maeve stuff set up. We're working on our processes so that things run more and more smoothly with each client. We are signed up for a big bridal fair on October 5th. It's free - you'll have to come. :)

4. This is a slow week for us. Which is good, because we need to find a house.

5. Our anniversary is the 24th, and my parents are going to keep our kids overnight for us. This is the first time we've been away overnight since Hannah was born. This is rather momentous.

6. The day AFTER our anniversary, I'm getting my wisdom teeth out. Yes, I'm 28, and no, I still haven't had my wisdom teeth out. I have two fully impacted ones, and I'm really scared, frankly. They're doing general anesthesia, and I just hate the whole idea. I will be so glad when it's over...except AFTER seems like the worst part. Please don't tell me any horror stories. I'm scared enough.

7. Safiya's Maeve gown goes to the seamstress this week. Holly's getting more and more experienced, and we might actually make money on this one! :)

8. Found this nifty site called You can link it to, and then clock in and out using a voice mail - even with job codes! This could prove to be VERY helpful for Maeve.

9. Any tips on cheap airline tickets? A good friend and her boyfriend decided to have a low-key spontaneous wedding in CA on August 8th, and I would LOVE to go.

Friday, July 11, 2008


Hi friends,
Just wanted to say that I have turned off anonymous commenting, based on the response to the measles post. I will talk with people who are willing to put their name behind what they write, but cheap shots with no name behind them will be disregarded. :) Thankyousomuch.


From a blog I happened across this morning. I love people that can express much with few words! I need to take lessons...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Measles Outbreak?

It's with a bit of fear and trembling that I write this post. I have avoided taking on anything regarding vaccinations here, because I believe it to be a deeply personal choice. As the parents of our children, God will hold my husband and I accountable for the choices we make, and no one else. Therefore I reserve all judgments about the decisions other parents make, especially in this area. If you are interested, I am happy to give you the reasons for the choice we personally make, but I will not debate about it.

That said, have you heard about the Measles Outbreak yet? (Insert sarcasm here)

Several things come to mind:

1. 120 something people in 10 states? Do we have any concept of the tiny percentage of the population that actually is? And they're going so far as to call it an epidemic?! Even if it is the most cases in 10 years. Good grief.

2. Hard to find good sources to reference on the internet, but if you read books about these things it's easy to see that these kinds of diseases have natural highs and lows of infection. If my memory serves me correctly, every 10 years there is a high point as the virus mutates, and then it declines again. This happened long before vaccines!

3. Measles is not life-threatening in healthy children, no matter what they try to say about it. They say the same things about Chicken Pox and even the flu. Feed your children nutritious food, limit their sugar and white flour and chemical additive intake, make sure they get enough sunshine and exercise, and give them things to help their immune system when they do get sick. They'll be fine. Of course there are no guarantees in life (even WITH vaccines), that just means we still need God.

4. Notice they say MOST of the infected were not vaccinated. What are the actual numbers there? And if vaccination is so important and life-saving, why do some people get sick anyway? Perhaps it is better standards of living and cleanliness that caused the decline, and not vaccination at all?

5. The wording of the report makes me mad too. 250,000 children die of this disease every year, but they split that up from "in poor countries." The deaths don't happen here! We have good healthcare and good nutrition and watchfulness by educated parents.

6. The Reuters report names the countries where the people were infected overseas. They are mostly western Europe, not poor countries. These people didn't go to undeveloped countries and come back with measles. It's just the year for measles to be high. No matter where it started, there would probably be infections.

7. Is anybody ever going to address WHY hundreds and thousands of parents are refusing vaccinations? If they would take the nasty chemicals and preservatives out of the vaccines, that would help. Maybe funding safety studies by companies unrelated to the vaccine manufacturers? Rather than making the parents out to be idiots who are dead-set on reintroducing dead diseases, maybe addressing their concerns would be a better idea?

8. I'm not even going to start with the risks of the MMR...

So, I'm sure you can tell where I stand on vaccinations based on this. :) We have to make the best choice we know how to make, and trust God, no matter what our choice is!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


I have a good friend who is getting very close to her first homebirth. I'm so excited for her I can hardly stand it. :) She's been on my mind a lot.

I came across this post this morning. This is so true! We homebirthers are certainly not stupid. We know we'd have access to more emergency help if we were to need it, birthing in the hospital. It's just that because of the high stress (and other things brilliantly explained in this post) of hospitals and doctors, we feel that it's better for us (and therefore for the baby!) to be at home. We believe that the best way for a baby to be born is without drugs or unnecessary interventions, and without stress. Our best (sometimes I think our only) chance for that is at home.

Natural childbirth is incredible. There's nothing like it. When I hear women say things about how much they love their epidural, I don't feel judgment toward them, but sympathy! They don't understand what they missed!! Natural birth changes a little girl into a woman. I may even go so far as to say it changes a woman into a warrior - she has conquered the world and knows she could do it again. Having experienced both a c-section and a wonderful homebirth, I can confidently say I would do 10 homebirths before choosing a single c-section.

I often say I would do something totally different if I had more than one lifetime to live - midwifery is one of those things. Along with being a Naturopathic Doctor, an English teacher, a biologist... Although I can't picture a single one of those lifetimes being complete without being a mother as well...

(Fascinating midwife blogs: Navelgazing Midwife (She's not shy with the pictures, or really anything at all - just warning you), and Belly Tales.)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Monday Headlines

1. We're moving Sept 1st. We decided this following the water leaking through the ceiling of our bedroom after the rain Thursday night. Long story, one that I wish I could make sound more funny than well, bitter. No luck on that so far. Anyway, we're looking for a place. We want 3 or 4 bedrooms, 1/2 acre or more, and for it to be at the north end somewhere. No idea what we're going to spend. We're so sick of moving that we're feeling the need to find something we can stay in, and just make it work.

2. This is Renee's Maeve gown:(Photos by Jennifer Harrelson Photography)
See for more pictures soon. Yay!! (Her wedding was this weekend)

3. Our couples small group is finished with the book study we've been doing, and would love to have some more couples join us. Let me know if you're interested. (Lots of small commercials today)

4. Playing for a wedding this weekend. Always nice to get paid for playing the piano. I'm accompanying a 12 year old violin prodigy for one song. Haven't done that kind of thing in a while.

5. High school reunion planning continues. We have 10 people signed up and paid so far. Need at least 40 more to make the money work. We're meeting Wednesday night. Why did I get myself into this project? One thing I should not have volunteered for...

6. Another book I highly recommend: Your Personality Tree. We've been reading it this weekend. I'll have to blog on it later.

7. My kitty is sick. He threw up a couple times last night, and has just been laying around. Wish I knew what to do for him. Poor Moses.

8. Audrey just climbed up on my lap and told me she's sleepy and that it's nap time. No joke. That's weird.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

oh, my goodness

Just made a batch of these. Nick says they're the best homemade dessert he's ever had.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Raising Healthy Kids, etc.

Not light reading, but a great summary of things I believe and try to live by!

It's interesting...we still get sick more than this guy says we should be. I'm going to start experimenting with more enzymes. Also, we have experimented with raw milk/dairy. I can do raw milk cheese once a week or so with no problems. The kids don't handle it as well. I wonder if the enzymes might help clear that up. Have to look into enzymes for them - I have taken them myself, but don't have any in dosages for kiddos...

I had a terrible day yesterday. I felt awful, I was depressed, and I felt completely hopeless. Hanging out with our small group last night cheered me up SO much. But today I feel like a different person. The problems haven't changed, but I have more energy, I'm not achy, and most of all I don't feel like the world is coming to an end. :) The only answer I can come up with? It's probable that I had gluten Monday night, and I haven't had it in several weeks.

Circumstantial evidence? Perhaps. Perhaps not.

The Last Resort

Staci referred me to this website. People often ask me about where to start to get healthy, or how to feed their family right. This article has the steps - the place to start. The author is very no-nonsense, and he doesn't really tolerate whining. :) I've only read a couple of articles on the website so far, but what I've read goes right along with what I've learned in the 11 years I've been living like this.

Note: Upon further reading of this site, I've noticed that the guy is also a HUGE conspiracy theorist. Just ignore that part. ;)