Sunday, July 31, 2011

In my corner

Illustrated version

Took Denae and Whitney to the mall. Denae played like she hurt her knee and wore Steve's knee brace and used his crutches around the mall. Whitney got her ears pierced again.

Steve and I went to the Cowley County fair to see a Journey tribute band. It was a lot of fun, they were good, and the storm waited to come through till they were done but before the AC/DC tribute band.

Carrie always takes a picture after a run. I can't take a self picture with my cell phone. I'm not coordinated enough. So I asked the elderly woman on the recumbant bike to do it, figured she wouldn't even have to stop pedaling. She says, "sure, push what button? My vision isn't very good." So I'm sharing this picture because she made my day.

I took this picture after my run this weekend. Obviously I didn't run the whole five miles at 8.2 miles per hour. But I started at 6 miles an hour and sped up pretty consistently the whole time. I did lose time because I had to slow down to walk to drink water because I had the wrong water bottle and I had to unscrew the lid and tip it and drink like a cup. But I was thrilled to finish this strong.

Steve bought me new trail shoes. Salomons. I love them. Plan on giving them a good workout.

Sunday afternoon with Anneshia.

Went to church. Steve is singing with the worship team later this month and going forward. The guitarist is in the lifegroup we are joining, him and his wife are neat people. Great sermon on forgiveness, I work hard at this, but I was pricked about one person that I'm continually forgiving and despising and forgiving. Much work needed on my heart still.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Would you eat it?

I'm sure (I really hope???) every family does this. Eats weird things. I thought about that tonight. As I poured a diet coke and put one scoop of vanilla ice cream in it, yumm, right? And then added a scoop of benefiber. (Go ahead and giggle).

I remember Nate standing in front of the fridge with a peach as he put a scoop of whipped cream on it, drizzled caramel sauce on it and then put a maraschino cherry on top of it. Nate and his giant peach.

Then my favorite Whitney one, she ate a bowl of cocoa pebbles when she was about five (don't judge me, she's a picky eater, I was just happy she was eating) and when she got done instead of just drinking her chocolate sugar milk she got up from the table and got the hershey's syrup to add to the chocolatey milk in her bowl and then drank it.

My kids all know how to make ramen noodles. We keep jars of Ragu cheddar, alfredo and red sauce to put on their noodles.

We save leftover pancakes and eat them with peanut butter and jelly (and the jelly must be homemade by grandma) as sandwiches later.

And PB&J stands for Peanut butter, banana AND jelly (same jelly comment applies) sandwiches.

My nephew Jeff loves syrup. So much, that at Christmas I gave him a jumbo jug of Log Cabin for a present. He even eats it on pork chops.

Madeline's favorite thing I make is hamburger helper cheesy hashbrown casserole. HOW WEIRD IS SHE??? This might be the weirdest of all.

I do have to point out that for Steve, weird is when he eats ice cream or pudding that isn't chocolate. He does have other *endearing* oddities, they just aren't food related.

So anyone want to share their weird concoctions? Not necessarily as gross as my benefiber diet coke float.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Jesus has big hands

I heard “Praise You in this Storm” on the radio. (Yes, I can finally listen to worship music again). I like this song. It wouldn’t make my top ten favorites list (if I had one, might have to do that). The band, Casting Crowns, wouldn’t even make my top ten favorites (I’ll be working on that list too). When it got to the line “and every tear I’ve cried, you hold in your hand” I realized Jesus has some really big hands. My friends Susie and Becca have cried non-stop for months over the loss of family and dreams. I’ve shed more than my share of tears recently. I’m not sure if there is a Scripture that says Jesus holds our tears in his hands. I know David writes in the Psalms about collecting our tears and bottling them.

There’s another song that says “he’s got the whole world in his hands”. Jesus has big hands. Which is great, because there is another song that says, "no weeeping, you hold me now, you hold me now".

I can sing again. I realized that I haven’t been singing. I would listen to music while I worked out, but not worship music. And now I can sing and listen to worship music. I ran with Steve’s ipod the other night and loved the worship music. I sang in church Sunday. I listened to Steve sing, and loved it. I thought of this verse:

The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17)

My song was silenced for a brief time. But the Lord is with me. He quiets me with his love. He rejoices over me with singing. And in that, he has given me back my song. My voice.

My hallelujah isn't as broken.

I have everything. God has been so good to me. Answering my prayers. Restoring me, healing me, putting things back together more beautiful than they were. He is mighty to save.

So Jesus may bottle my tears, but there will be a lot less of them.

Well, a lot less after next weekend. I reserve the right to cry more than usual as Nate told me Monday he’s leaving a week earlier than originally planned for Lawrence, he is now moving on August 5 instead of August 12. I came home from work last night to boxes being packed, bags being filled, and laundry being done. Belongings being separated into what he wants to take and what he wants me to store and what I can get rid of. He’s ready to move on to the next phase of his life. I’m ready for that too. I just wish my head could convince my heart.

But the Lord is with me, he quiets me with his love.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Life with Whitney

Whitney made a grilled cheese sandwich last night. Gourmet grilled cheese. American and italian cheese and she fried bacon to sandwich between the cheese. And then made up a banana cream pie cupcake recipe for me to make for a birthday party next week. I'll let you know how they turn out.

She said the sandwich was good.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Training Update

I was inspired by Carrie. I did my first set of Yasso’s last night. I loved it. I’m going to add them to my weekly routine. Yasso’s are named after Bart Yasso, marathoner and Runner’s World writer. The easiest explanation is speedwork. Running sets of 800 meters (or a half mile for us Americans). You base the time of your 800 meters on the time you want to run your marathon. For simplicity, I will use a 4 hour marathon. You would run your 800 meters in 4 minutes, then jog/recover for 4 minutes and then run another 800 meters in 4 minutes and so on. You start with a set of 3 and add them weekly till you get to ten. Theoretically you end up running your 4 hour marathon.

I got on the treadmill and I’m not really sure how fast I am right now. I’ve only been back running for two and half weeks after a twelve week break. I’ve been running outside in triple digit heat which means I have to take it slow. Last night I did the first Yasso conservatively at a 9.5 minute mile and it seemed to slow. So I did the second at a 9 minute mile and that seemed a little slow also. So the third one I decided to go for it and dropped it to an 8 minute mile. I was able to maintain that pace. I won’t say easily, but it didn’t kill me either. So next week when I have a set of four, I will start at an 8 minute mile and see if I can do all four sets that way and if I can, maybe need to speed up a little bit more. I’m not training for a marathon, just a 15K, but Yasso's were fun (yes, FUN). I enjoyed getting on the treadmill and seeing how fast I could run for half a mile.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Tales from the herd

Carrie's marathon training update. I was so inspired when I read this that I wanted to run, so even though I didn't have a run scheduled today after yesterdays five miler, I ran three this evening anyway. I remember my first 20 miler, and I'm looking forward to the next one. Way to go Carrie. This is a major accomplishment in itself while on the way to a marathon.

Training - Week 18 (20 Miles)

You read that right! I DID IT!! I reached 20 miles! I feel AMAZING!!! I even had to do it on a treadmill. I will take you through the run step-by-step (figure of speech).

I got to the gym after 9:00 am. I was giving myself approximately 4.5 hours to complete this task. I knew that the treadmills at the YMCA stop at 60 minutes. So I decided I would run 4 legs of 5 minutes each. In between each leg, I would walk to the drinking fountain and refill my water bottle. Then get back on the treadmill for the next leg.

LEG 1:
These first 5 miles just sort-of tacked along. I didn't run at my max, but I wanted to make sure I would have enough "gas" to get me through the full 20 miles. I finished the leg and took my picture.

I walked over to the water fountain and filled my water bottle up. I ate a few pretzels and walked around for a few minutes. That's when I looked up and saw her. MY SISTER! She had come to join me. I got back on my friend, TREAD, and Jen got on the one next to me. I started my leg number 2 and she started walking.

LEG 2:
These next 5 miles flew by. Jen was chatting with me periodically and I was getting encouraging texts from both my husband and Julie. Talk about feeling the love! Next thing I know, I finished my leg and took my picture.

I walked over to the drinking fountain and refilled my water, ate some pretzels, a few gummy bears. I was feeling wonderful, got back on the treadmill and started my next leg.

LEG 3:These next 5 miles had a series of milestones for me. (Those of you who know me, know I'm a cheerleader to those around me. Well, while I was running this section, I started hearing the "cheerleader" in my head.)
1.I had reached my previous longest distance on the treadmill.
2.I ran 13.1 miles 10 minutes faster than the last time I ran it.
3.I was keeping a rather constant speed the entire time, so far.
I finished the leg and took my picture.

Still feeling pretty good, I walked over to the drinking fountain and stretched a little. My left knee was feeling a little tight. I also thought I might be getting a blister on my left big toe. I was way ahead of my 4.5 hour projected time, so I "got back on the horse" and finished this bad boy.

LEG 4:
This was a little harder to motivate myself to do this one. I started running and realized I only had to run 2 miles to reach my longest run EVER! Right around that same mark, Jen finished walking for 2 solid HOURS! I was so proud of her. She completed over 5 miles. It was her day of from work, and she chose to spend a big chunk of it with me... SWEATY! I finished the leg strong. I felt AMAZING! I turned to her and through my arms in the air. I didn't care WHO saw me. I DID IT! 20 miles, basically staying in one place. So I took my last few pics.

I walked over to the water fountain and filled up one last time. Met Jen at the stretching area and worked out some stiff joints. She had walked so much, that her shoe's sole split on the bottom. This was my FIRST 20 miler. I'm sure it won't be my last, but I will never forget it.

Thanks to my support team. Jen, Jake, Owen, Allison, Julie, Patsy, Angela, Amy, Megan and anyone else who knew I was doing this and had faith that I COULD do this.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Madeline and Whitney get hot

I took Whitney and Madeline grocery shopping with me. We are in Dillons and they are actually with me, because unlike Walmart it's no fun to browse in Dillons. And the comic relief while grocery shopping was welcome. A lady tells them that they are both beautiful girls and asks if one of them in my daughter. She thinks they both look like me. Of course the one that pipes up and says I'm not her daughter is my daughter and the lady looks at her and says well you really look like her. And they laugh and I confess.

But then they left me to browse in the produce section. And then Whitney comes back and asks if I'll buy Madeline a habanero. In case you haven't read me long enough to have an indication of what I would do here, I bought the habanero.

I don't pay a whole lot of attention to these girls when we get home, but then I see on facebook that they made a 3:11 minute video of themselves eating the habanero. It was hilarious. Madeline is very matter of fact as she cuts and eats part of the habanero. Whitney is apprehensive and giggly, and when she finally takes a bite, she gags and puts her hand over her mouth and almost throws up. (That's my girl).

I wish I still lived that way. Unafraid of new things. Willing to try things that might hurt me. And willing to video and share it with everyone else.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Tales from the herd

I was given this advice from Meredith yesterday, worth sharing.

"Just be patient with yourself. It's not good to run through the valley, or stay there. Just walk".

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Precious Words

Precious words, I love you.

I’ve been thinking about love a lot lately. Started with a friend asking me if I’d ever read “The Cross and the Switchblade.” Yes, multiple times, first time in 4th grade. I love where the gang member tells the preacher he could cut him in 1000 pieces and the preacher says yes, and every piece would say I love you. Then we had a sermon the very next morning about love. This is not the passage Mike used, (he also showed clips from the Seinfeld episode of the “Soup Nazi” about obeying rules, quite fun) he used one from the gospels where the religious leaders were trying to trip Jesus up by asking what was the most important commandment. It’s summed up really well here though, in Romans 13:8-10 “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. The commandments, "Do not commit adultery", "Do not murder", "Do not steal", "Do not covet", and whatever other commandment there might be, are summed up in this one rule: "Love your neighbor as yourself". Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

Precious words, I love you.

I love more out of my broken heart then I loved before. It’s taken a little time to realize it. When something is broken it can’t hold much. It spills, it oozes, a broken vessel can never hold when it is overfilled. And that is what God is doing for me. Overfilling me with love, there is so much more to give, and since God is continually pouring his love into me and I can’t hold it, it’s gotta go somewhere.
I didn’t look at Webster’s to see the definition of love, because when it comes to love, I want nothing to do with the world’s definition. I’ve seen it bastardized by people to suit their wants and desires and I have even had the world use their definition against me. It’s also used for a myriad of things that really don’t deserve our love. I love diet coke. I love to run. I love my kids. I love my husband. I don’t think these belong in the same category. Gonna have to figure that out.

Precious words, I love you.

Now, I only care about God’s definition of love. I think it’s defined very well in the passage below:

I Cor. 13:4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

I have taken this passage and begun to look at the people in my life through this lens, one at a time. Some I’ve done well. Others I have failed. There is another thing where love is concerned that I have been trying for the last four months. God really challenged me to love others the way they need to be loved. Free. No expectations. Arms wide open.

The way they need to be loved, not the way I want to love them. Freely.

I have to try and see what they need, not just what I want to give. Because I would like to now, (more than ever) protect my heart. But now, (more than ever), I can’t afford to. I’ll use Steve and Whitney for examples, but I look at this for everyone in my life, my kids, my family, my friends, my enemies (you know I got them) and try to work through this passage.

I love Whitney. From the moment the stick turned purple. Because I love her I am patient (even when I’m exhausted, and she waited to start her chores till I got home and then asked if I could drop her at Denae’s when I go to the Y. Even when I have to wake her up for school four times before she gets out of bed and then wait for her to dry the 12 pounds of naturally curly hair Steve and I blessed her with genetically which makes me late to work and then she calls because she forgot her volleyball bag for practice and I spend my lunch hour driving to the school…). I am kind (even when she is planking on my refrigerator at 3:30 a.m.). I am not envious of her (ever. I’m thrilled that she is confident and beautiful and happy and popular). I am not proud…??? (Okay, I bust my buttons over this child). I am not rude (I try really hard, anyway, but she is so mouthy sometimes I mouth back). I am not easily angered. (I can’t remember being really angry at Whitney). I keep no record of wrongs. (She’s perfect, lol, except for the mouthy part).

I love Steve with everything I have, everything I am. Because I love him I am patient (even when I’m exhausted and he’s had three surgeries in two weeks and is on two different prescription pain killers and can’t walk or drive). I am kind (even when I feel hateful and he doesn’t deserve kindness). I am not envious of him (even though he is strong and talented and beautiful). I am not proud, (I do not think I am better than him. There but for the grace of God go I). I am not rude (I try really hard, anyway). I am not easily angered???? (Can I get a pass on this one just this once)? I keep no record of wrongs. (That’s right. Hit the delete button. Dump the memory, as often as necessary).

I don’t delight in evil. (At all, ever. I hate evil). I rejoice in the truth. (So glad God has given me discernment to know it when I hear it). And these last ones? Yeah, I got these. Always protects (don’t mess with me and mine, I’ll kick your *%@#), always trusts (even when it’s not deserved or earned and it’s really, REALLY STINKIN HARD), always hopes (I got high hopes, lots of hope, pretty much all I got is hope), always perseveres (yep, I’m tough, I don’t give up, I fight and fight hard Col. 1:11 God will strengthen you with his own great power so that you will not give up when troubles come, but you will be patient.), love never fails. And that is why I can do this. Christ’s love never fails me.

Precious words, I love you.

Monday, July 18, 2011

I make things new

I stood before him, tears running down my cheeks.

"I'm so tired". I said.

"Come to me if you are tired and weary. I'll give you rest", (Matt. 11:28) he said kindly.

More tears, sobbing openly I said to him,

"I'm tired of hurting."

"I am the Son of Righteousness. There is healing in me." (Malachi 4:2)

I held my hands out to him, opening them to show the shattered pieces of me.

"I'm so broken. There is nothing left of me. Can you fix me? Please?"

"Your faith will make you well", he said. (Luke 8:48)

And he took the broken out of my hands and said "I make all things NEW". (Revelation 21:5)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

My anniversary

This is one of my favorite anniversaries. This is the third anniversary of the first day of my first half marathon training. On that day, I wouldn’t have called myself a runner. Today I know different.

I’ve been running for two weeks regularly after healing from a double sprain and double stress fracture in April. Sheila thinks that it was God’s way of telling me to quit running from my problems and running to get out of the house and just stay home. Sheila is very wise, I would not disagree with her, pretty sure she is one of two friends of mine that God speaks directly through to me. And I've discovered in the last two weeks that I do that. So I'm guessing...

I want to share some of my favorite running things/moments.

My 2011 Grasslands Marathon long sleeve maroon tech shirt. Most awesome race shirt ever.

The Steve 50

Watching the Boston Marathon (run Jed, run!)

New friends I’ve made because I run. I would not know any of these individuals if I (okay, if Steve) hadn’t taken up running. Jake, Carrie, Jed, Jenny, Paul, Joni, Patrick, Kimberly, Robert

All the extra time I’ve spent with Sheila because we get to run together.

I have also set goals for the next year. This is what I’m looking forward too, (but I’m always very flexible with what I schedule).

I want to run the 15K Tiger Trot at Tanganika Zoo in September

I want to see Steve finish the Ozark Trail 100. Knee surgeon told him his meniscus has been bad for a while, since before last November even, so we think that may be the swelling and pain problem he had with his knee last year.

I want to run the 10 Mile Turkey Trot in November for the 4th consecutive year.

I want to run the Psycho Wyco Run Toto Run in February, any distance, just because I loved every cold snowy vertigo inducing step last year.

I want to run my third marathon in 2012. Haven’t picked a marathon or even time of year, but I know I’m going to run one (or two if I stay healthy & un-stress fractured). I’m thinking about the one at Clinton Lake in April, it’s a trail marathon, and Clinton Lake is located in Lawrence, Kansas where a certain special young man is moving this August…not that I need an excuse to visit him, but if I can combine two loves I will. And I have yet to run the Wichita Marathon (Prairie Fire, whatever you call it) so maybe number 4 in October of 2012.

Steve is talking more ultra’s next year, so I am also excited to be his crew.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

In my corner

One orthopedic doctor post op follow up appointment (knee is healing awesome), three dentist appointments (as of Friday dry socket is healed, pain is gone), one foot surgery. No weight on the foot for 8 days, which means crutches. Steve has always helped out a lot at home, so I really feel it when he can't. Add to that he hasn't been working so sleep schedules are off and I'm pretty exhausted. We are getting back to normal. Within a month our life should be rolling along back on track in all areas. He will be running again, Whitney will be back in school and back in volleyball, and I will be working a later shift which means I no longer will get up at 5:30, but won't get off work at 3:00 either. Trade-offs.

Nate is tested, enrolled, banking, finances, apartment, furniture,everything done for the move to Lawrence in August. Now just working every shift he can for every dollar he can make. I never see him, I guess that's preparing me for the move?

Ran 4 days last week for a total of 11 miles. Feel pretty good.

Headed out for a date with Steve (and crutches) here shortly.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Conversations with Madeline & Whitney

Here are two recent gems...

Madeline: Conditioning was really hard! I have air bubbles on my toes.
Whitney: You mean blisters?

And on a particularly hot day in Kansas, 113 degrees (we've had 21 days over 100 degrees so far. We usually don't hit 100+ till late July).

Whitney: It feels like the devil swallowed Kansas.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Fairy tales can come true...

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you're fast asleep
In dreams you lose your heartaches
Whatever you wish for, you keep
Have faith in your dreams and someday
Your rainbow will come smiling thru
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
the dream that you wish will come true

I love fairy tales. I did as a child. Still love happy endings. I was thinking about this song which led me to Cinderella and the other stories I loved as a child. But my favorite one has ended up being Shrek. The princess with the inner beauty, not the gorgeous body and hair, married to the ogre. (My daughter still sees couples and says “ewww, ogre love”. Which I know is rude and unnecessary and I should scold her but she makes me laugh, so I’ll just buy her another bikini).

Every one of the fairy tales I thought of had happy endings. But then I thought about what they went through to get there. Cinderella lost both her mother and father and was raised by an evil stepmother with two hateful stepsisters. She was a maid in her own house, locked in her room to keep her from pursuing happiness.

Snow White ran away to escape death, once again at the hands of stepmother and lived with seven creepy little men that she cleaned up after and cooked for, etc. They were named Sneezy, Dopey, and Grumpy. How fun could that be? (I wonder what my dwarf name would be? This is why comments are moderated.)

In Shrek, the ogre had the personality. He was a warrior who fought and rescued the princess. The prince was dull and weak.

So what is the definition of a happy life? First off, I don’t believe for a second God promises us that as Christians we will have an easy life. Take up your cross sounds pretty rough. Narrow is the path and few there are that find it also doesn’t sound easy. When he says “love your enemies” he didn’t say IF you have them, he said LOVE them. I’m guessing he knew we would all have them. (Here I wish I was like the dragon, I would incinerate them lovingly with fire breath. Wouldn’t that be cool? My kids would never have talked back. Making hot dogs and Smores would be simple. When the electricity is out in the winter, I could warm the house. I could also always say truthfully that I am hot!)

How do I define “happy” for me? What makes me happy. I certainly don’t have the fairy tale by the world’s standards. Fortunately, I don’t live by the world’s standards. I have a husband who loves me (and I love very much) and he loves God. I have happy??, healthy children who are all employed (at the moment), and somewhat doing okay. Which for me and my five is rare. I have a good job, with excellent insurance. And with the last two months with Steve, that is something that makes me really REALLY happy. I have air conditioning. (I mention this, because without it I would be extremely unhappy.)

Most importantly, I have faith in my Savior. And as long as I can feel like I’m putting him first, or trying to keep him in first place in my life, I can believe he will take care of me. I can rest in him. I find my happiness in Him. Everything else is bonus happy.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Surgery went well. Home for now, after a couple of donuts in the recovery room and Wendy's on the way home.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Surgery #2

Tomorrow is Steve's foot surgery for neuroma. Knee surgery last Wednesday went well and his post op today was really good. He is walking without limping. Tomorrow he has to use crutches for a week, no weight on his foot at all. He is anxious to run again. He saw his personal trainer this week for a workout and hit two core classes. We will see what he is up for after a couple days out of foot surgery. He's also ready to go back to work, and missing singing as well. Think everything will probably open up for him at the same time, except for work. That will happen soon.

Prayers are appreciated

Monday, July 11, 2011

In my corner...

Three dental visits, one orthodontist visit, one orthopedic surgeon visit.
One birthday party for the 19 year old, last one we will ever have for him living at home. Chicken enchiladas, steak and onion enchiladas, fruit pizza, seven layer dip and ice cream cake. All home made except for the ice cream cake at the request of my family. And leftovers, thank goodness, cause after all that cooking for the party I'm taking a day or two off.
Date night to a concert.
Shampooed my carpets. They'll look clean for about two weeks.
A trip to the Sedgwick County Fair. Looked at some indian jewelry.
Steve bought me a new outfit. Rephrase, picked out, bought and surprised me with a new outfit. Perfect fit, great colors, looks awesome. He will be my personal shopper from here on out.
Three mile run Thursday night, twelve weeks off and didn't lose any of my hard worked for speed (using the term speed lightly).
IT'S HOT IN KANSAS!!! Whitney told me (and facebook) it was so hot the devil swallowed Kansas. This from the girl who has also once said it was so hot it felt like the devil was hugging her wearing a wool sweater.

Blessings on all of you this week!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

My Boat

I went to church this morning. Which is not a news flash. I go to church. I like church, it's what I do. This morning we started a sermon series "The Gospel According to Seinfeld". I'm a Seinfeld fan, have seen every episode several times. This morning though, when the sermon title hit the big screen it instantly brought tears to my eyes.

I've been very honest about God giving me what I need. He has left me in dry time for the last couple weeks, and I know he did it to show me that I have to believe he's there, even when it doesn't quite feel like he's as close as he's been. Twice this week this has happened. Last weekend was rough on me. My still bruised and somewhat battered self esteem took a major hit. It was not intentional, but that didn't make it any less painful. It hurts a little just to mention it. But wouldn't you know, that the area I took the hit in God provided some people in my life to make me feel better. I had three different individuals compliment me in this area this week. Very real, very complimentary, and guys that I believed and so needed. They will never know what a blessing they were to me. I know they were being the mouth piece of God, even though they don't, so thank you Jesse, Jake and Alan.

And then to this morning's sermon. The title was "Get Off the Boat". Inserting links never works right for me, but I posted several months ago and it's late March time frame titled "Get out of the boat." And then titled follow up.

I'm not going through the stories again, but there was one point Mike brought out this morning that I had never thought about in all my years hearing this story. After Peter got out of the boat, walked on the water, sunk, and reached out to Jesus, Jesus walked back to the boat with him. Peter walked with Jesus across the water. Jesus saved him, and then walked with him.

There was one other thing Mike said that I wanted to share. When Peter said if it's you Jesus, let me walk to you. And Jesus said come on. When you pray big prayers and want to do bold things for Jesus. Hard things for Jesus. He doesn't say I don't think its a good idea. This isn't going to end well. You stay there in the boat and let me come to you. He says COME!!!

I was reminded today that Jesus is walking with me. And I realized that Jesus is walking with us in the storm like he did with Peter, or through the fire like he did with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, in the lions den like he was with Daniel, and walking with us across dry land after he parts the sea where there is no way across and an army of enemies behind us. He is close in the hard times. Visible in the hard times. That is so comforting to me.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Workin' at the car wash

Heights volleyball team had a car wash today. When it was over Mckenzie, Alyssa, Carly, Jada and Shaunee came to the Y where Steve and I were lounging in the inner tubes. McKenzie and Alyssa came over and talked to us and told us how it went. A USD259 woman employee drove by and made the comment "is this what we've come to?"

I have lived through 13 years times 4 kids of school fundraisers, plus 10 years of Whitney. Add volleyball, baseball, softball, basketball, choir, madrigals, cheerleading, drill team, women's ensemble, drama, youth camps and mission trips, that's a lot of fundraisers.

But, I even surprised myself when I said to Steve "if they can make $811.00 in six hours at a car wash and I don't have to sell cookie dough, I'll buy Whitney a new bikini."


Friday, July 8, 2011

Conversations with Whitney

I love 15 year old girls. Have I said that before? I really do. These two made my day yesterday. We went to the Sedgwick County Fair in Cheney, Kansas. We sat at the parade. The walkers threw candy. Madeline would see how far she could stretch and reach candy while still leaving her feet on the blanket. It was kind of disturbing (hilarious) to watch a 15 year old crawl on pavement for candy. She also would yell whenever they didn't throw candy right at her and Whitney "it's because I'm black, isn't it?"
And Whitney would watch the cheerleaders go by doing their chants and try to do the arm motions with them. They were looking at her like she's the world's biggest dork (she is) but never realized that she was laughing at them while they were looking down their pretty little noses at the "ratchety" girl who couldn't cheer.
Then when we leave the parade to go to the fair Whitney asks for my phone. I give it to her and ask why. Because her's is dead, and she can't go 3 hours without a phone. Steve asks about Maddi's, but it's about to die too.
The guy at the ticket booth asks Maddi if she's going to be on America's Next Top Model (it's because she's black, lol) and then they are off to ride rides. Steve and I go in search of food, I had the best sandwich I've had since the Ozark Trail 100 last November. Philly Cheesesteak was awesome. Evening went without any problems, finally heard from Whitney when I got a call, "mom, where are you? We're hungry". One Turkey leg and one brisket sandwich and $16.00 later we head to Braum's for three milkshakes and a diet coke (for yours truly cause I'm neither 15 nor male nor genetically blessed), and head home.
I wanted a picture of them, but they both ducked because they didn't have time to get ready and they looked "ratchet". I know, I don't speak 15 year old either.

(I have nicknamed them Thing I and Thing II now.)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Not so proud of myself today

I feel mean today. So I made a list. I made a list today of all the people who have hurt my feelings. All the people that I am upset with or because of their actions. I didn’t have to write down what they did, I know that. Nine people. After I wrote down their name, I added a column for whether they had asked for forgiveness. Then I added one for had their behavior changed to match their request for forgiveness/apology. It didn’t make me feel better.

I know this sounds terribly childish and un-Christian as well. And it is. And I’ll tell you what I did with the list in a minute. I was amazed at how many people I have hurt or anger towards in my heart. The hurt is different than the anger; I know I have to deal with them separately, except for where they are the same thing. Of the 9 people on my list, two have apologized. One’s actions and words back up the apology. The other apology goes right out the window because the behavior went right back to what it had been. A couple of them are passively aggressively continuing to dig at me, while I continue to distance myself from them. Four of these individuals don’t know I feel this way towards them. I’m sure if I said I was upset they would know why, but it’s not bothering them right now that I’m upset. It’s only bothering me. So these 9 people have been released. I’m sure I will have to remind myself of this, especially with two of them.

I thought about this list and went back to my One Word 2011. ME. What can I control? What am I responsible for? Not their actions, but mine. How I respond to this treatment. ME. What can I do? So I prayed over this list. Each person. I forgave them. And asked God to remind me I forgave them. I asked that I won’t try to get even or even make them feel bad. I prayed that I will forgive the way I want to be forgiven, and not try and make sure they know they’ve been forgiven as a way to make them feel bad for what they did. Go to them as a Christian offering forgiveness so you can tell them what they did that hurt your feelings. Or ask them to forgive you for the bitterness you had towards them so you can tell them why you were bitter. Like gossiping and calling it a prayer request.

As I tore this list up I also told myself I will do everything I can to stay off of other’s lists, too. I mean, if there are other people who are small and petty enough to make a list like this.

I will continue 2011 remembering ME! I am responsible for me, my actions, my behavior, my thoughts, and my words.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

In my corner...

I went to the pool. A couple of times. First time I ran into Meredith (from the herd). Talked to her for two hours. A conversation I desperately needed this weekend. God puts the people we need in our path at just the right times. Found out I could flip from stomach to my back without ever getting off the inner tube or dislodging my strapless swimsuit top. This in itself is amazing, and since my suit is a size or two too big, it was a risky move.

I ran twice this weekend. Successfully, no pain. Mile and a half each time, without walking. So I’m ready to go up to two miles tomorrow. And maybe speed up a little, I’ve been taking it really easy. I got to run with Sheila, the first time in three months. Again, God puts people in our path when we need them. (Although Sheila pretty much walks the path

Steve had his tooth pulled. That tooth has been a major huge deal. Two mis-diagnosis, three dentists, an ER visit, 5 trips to the dentist office, three prescription pain killers, oral antibiotics, packed the tooth with antibiotics, pulled it to get......a dry socket over the holiday weekend, no one answered the emergency number and when I scheduled the earliest appointment available today someone else scheduled it at the same time and they gave it to them. I am not ashamed to admit I cried when she called me back and told me his appointment was 7 hours later.

Three date nights this weekend. With a tooth ache, Steve still managed to show me a good time. Dinner and a movie, UFC fights on the big screen, and banana splits at Braum’s.

I thought about stopping my blog. I don’t really want to, and decided against it, but thought seriously about it. Realized it’s been exactly two and a half years, 503 posts and over 10,000 visitors. I realize some of you read everything I post, so I have multiple repeat visitors. My most viewed posts are The Ozark Trail 100 race report, the Psycho Wyco race report and Tar Baby relationships. I believe google helps me out with that. Oh, and All the Single Ladies is catching up fast.

I love my new church already. But in thinking about it, I loved my old church. And the one before that. So it just comes down to the church is the people who love God, and I love the people who love God, so I love church. You know, if a = b and b= c then a = c.

My neighborhood looked and sounded like a war zone when I went to get Whitney at 11:00 p.m. last night. Lots of smoke and lighting up around the area. Smelled like burning stuff. And the poor animals were so freaked out, I almost hit three cats that ran out in front of me.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Random Thoughts

I'm so glad I know there is a way to know there is a wedding cake in your van. Is this so I'll be more careful if I see the flashers? I'm going to drive wild and crazy until...wait!!! You have a wedding cake in there? I'll slow down. Or do you park on the street like UPS and run up and drop it on the porch?

Saturday, July 2, 2011

My Declaration - I AM FREE!!!!

The Constitution of the United States, First Amendment
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

This weekend is Independence Day. We celebrate the freedom of our great and free nation. I’m happy to live in the U.S. as a free citizen. I was born here, lived my whole life here, have never lived where I wasn’t free. (Unless you count the years in a legalistic fundamental A.C.E. Christian School. No freedoms there.)

I have to wonder if the great minds behind the Declaration of Independence would have written things differently if they could have seen the future? I’m only going to talk about one of them today, but I can’t help but think the freedom of speech is out of control. If they could have seen the internet would they have thought twice about this freedom? Anybody with a cell phone anymore can post to the web. Can say anything that they want. Most recently, a gentlemen got worldwide attention saying that the world was coming to an end and people sold everything they had to share this message. Now they are broke, and the world lives on. In Benjamin Franklin’s day, the quack standing on the corner saying this wouldn’t have affected too many people. Today everyone heard it. And how about Fred Phelps and Westboro Baptist Church, right here in my home state?

I am using this freedom right now. And I have used it to bash fundamentalism, A.C.E., the Christian School I attended and its administration, Fred Phelps, and people who claim the sky is falling and the idiots who believe it.

Now, I personally do not know Benjamin Franklin, John or Samuel Adams or Thomas Jefferson. I can’t name everyone who signed this document, although I do know my freedoms came at a great price to them. (And I have to admit I know more about this document because of the movie National Treasure then I probably would have. My Christian School education was lacking in a few historical areas). I can’t believe they intended to protect our rights of free speech to use it as hate, because many of the signers were God fearing Christian men.

And in the vein of freedom of speech, I love comments and feedback on my blog. I especially get a kick out of Steve when he says I got an email from so and so about such and such and I didn’t tell anyone. People email Steve questions about things from my blog. He doesn’t care, for example, that I said he’s having knee surgery, he just doesn’t read me every day, so it surprised him to get asked how it would affect his training by a couple of fellow runners.

Last week I got hate comments on my blog. Nasty, spiteful, mean spirited, hateful comments. Worst of all, they were posted anonymously. WHO DOES THAT?

So with Independence Day I was thinking of our freedoms and how thankful I am for them. Even the freedom of speech. Not so thankful for the cowards who are willing to voice their opinion but not own it. It hurts. Even anonymously, these words hurt. I thought about not writing anymore. But I don’t run and hide. I do wonder though, if you don’t like me, why visit?

I’m thankful for my freedoms. Freedom of speech, obviously. Freedom of religion, we attend a religious gathering every week. Freedom to bear arms, we have guns in our home.

But the greatest freedom I have is this: John 8:31-36 “Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” “But we are descendants of Abraham,” they said. “We have never been slaves to anyone. What do you mean, ‘You will be set free’?” Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin. A slave is not a permanent member of the family, but a son is part of the family forever. So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.”

The Son has set me free from my sin. It doesn’t get any better than that.

And I want to say directly to my anonymous commenter…


Friday, July 1, 2011

Conversations with Whitney

and Denae and Maddi

setting: On The Border

Whitney: OMG! He was so annoying!!!
Me: Who?
Whitney: NEAR! (volleyball camp coach)
Denae: I hated him
Maddi: I wanted to lick his ankles.
Me: Okay, that's weird
Whitney: I know, they are BALD!!!
Me: Huh???
Denae: I asked him if he knew the Real Housewives of Orange County. He says he's seen them around, but not met them.
Me: Huh??
Whitney: He's from Orange County.
Me: Who?
Whitney: NEAR!
Me: Oh. Should we film Real Housewives of Wichita?
Denae: More like "Real Baby Momma's of Wichita".