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Friday, October 31, 2008

An award!!

How sweet! Siteseer gave me an award! I so seldom win anything, so we'll just put this here on my old dusty trophy wall where you all can see it.

The requirements for this award are to list six things that make me happy, then tag six more bloggers.

Six things that make me happy:

1. Panera. If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, I don't need to say anything more.
2. Tea.
3. Time ALONE.
4. Knitting.
5. A good book.
6. God.

Yep. Good stuff. I'm a simple girl, really. Although given that I haven't had nearly enough of those things this week, I'm thinking I know why I've been a grumpy gus lately.

The final requirement for this award is to tag 6 more bloggers that are Kreativ.


Good blogs, good friends, and you know what? Reading them makes me happy too. :)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #66: Kids say the darndest things

Thirteen Things my four year old said this week

1. My little one was bouncing and I kept telling her to stop so she wouldn't make herself sick. "But mom, I'm not bouncing on my tummy, I'm bouncing on my @ss!" Horrified that my sweet child would say such a thing, I told her not to use that word. "But why mom, that's what it is... it's my @ss." As I tried explaining to her that it was still a bad word, she says, "Mom, it's a part of the body. Body parts can't be bad words." She's four. What am I going to do with her at fourteen?

2. The doctor is asking if it hurts her to pee, so she whispers to me, "It hurts to poop, but don't tell him that because that's private."

3. We're discussing whether or not she's well enough to go outside to play, and I tell her she'll have to wait until her dad gets home to talk with him about it. "Oh good. Daddy always tells me yes." I mentioned I'm going to be in trouble when she's fourteen, right?

4. She's sitting on the couch, passing gas, each time offering a polite "excuse me." Finally, I say, "okay, that's enough." "But mom, I said excuse me, so it's okay to fart. Farts happen."

5. We're getting ready to go to the store to buy soup for lunch. "So first, you have to put curlies (braids) in my hair so I can be beautiful. Then I need my socks and shoes. Then, you have to let the dog out. Then, we have to look in the mirror to make sure I'm beautiful. Then, we can go." I tried letting the dog out before the socks and shoes and she threw a hissy fit. "No, Mom, that's not how I said it goes!"

6. She's looking at one of our wedding pictures on the mantle. "Where am I in the picture?" "You weren't born yet." "That's not fair that you got to go there without me. It looks like a cool place. Will you take me there sometime?" As I'm trying to figure out a good answer, since we were married at a country club that we're NOT members of and that particular picture was taken on their golf course, she says with the urgency of a deathbed vow, "PROMISE me, Mom. When I get married, you're going to take me right there and you'll let me get married."

7. Still looking at pictures on the mantel. "I was such a cute baby. I've always been beautiful." "Um, that's not you. That's your sister." "What? Why don't you have pictures of me anywhere in the house? Don't you love me?" In all fairness, I still don't have all of our pictures framed or unpacked, and for some reason, I don't have hers. So she does have a point.

8. "Do you think I should marry Tom and Jerry?" As in her favorite cartoon? I'm tired of all her nonsense, so I sort of agree. "Mom, you're silly. You know I can't marry Tom and Jerry. I'm still a kid."

9. She's been trying to get me to get her a glass of milk and I'm in the middle of something. "Mom, you're my most beautiful and lovely mom. Now will you get me some milk?"

10. Looking for a pumpkin at the pumpkin patch. "I want a pumpkin that I can carry all by myself. Last year, we got a big one and dad had to carry it. But it's MY pumpkin and I'M going to carry it, okay?" Big sister had to rub in that it was a small pumpkin. "Yes, but I'm a small girl and I'm carrying mine all by myself so I need a small pumpkin."

11. "Mom, I brought my pet roly polys in because someone stole some last night. I had a lot and now there's only a few left, so I brought them inside." "Sorry honey, you know the rules. No bugs in my house." "But mom, these are my pets. And they have to be inside so no one else steals them." "Nope. They need to go out." "But they're in MY room, not yours." "Yes, but they're still in my house and I don't want them in my house." She stomps off, wailing, "You just don't care about nature!"

12. She's playing, and I hear a loud, "MOM!" I come running, "What, honey?" She looks at me, angry. "I wasn't talking to you. I was playing a game." This happens a few times, so finally, the next time I hear her yelling mom, I ignore it. A few minutes later, I find her in tears. "What's wrong?" "I called and you didn't come. Don't you love me?" "Well, the last few times you called, you were playing a game and didn't want me." "But this time I did. You're my mom. You should know when I need you."

13. But probably the best, because at each of her funny but truly sincere words, I have a hard time not laughing, she says, "Don't laugh at me, I'm not funny. I mean it. I'm serious."

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The since I last blogged update

I meant to post last night, but I came home to a sick little one with a fever of 102.6. So I sat up with her, holding her and loving on her. She's still really sick today. Doing the "do I call the doctor" debate, and right now I'm just watching her. My kiddos have this miraculous ability to become well the instant they walk in the doctor's office. She's sleeping now, so we'll see how she is when she wakes up.

Right. I was going to post pics from our pumpkin patch trip, but we used my FIL's camera because ours was missing, and I don't know how to do the downloady thing on it, so I have to wait for hubby.

Interesting thing about the missing camera... it's been missing for a while. The last time I saw it, I had it on the couch because I was downloading pics. Then it disappeared. I've asked the kids over and over if they've seen it. We moved all the furniture and looked everywhere. Nothing. I finally sent a prayer request to a prayer loop, feeling slightly silly, but the reality is, they pray lost stuff found. Don't know how, but it works. Within an hour, I was talking to hubby about the camera, and the little one pipes up, "I know where it is!" Sure enough, she brought it to us. Couldn't do it the past 100 times we asked, but that one worked.

I have a couple of memes to do, one someone tagged me on a while ago, but I can't remember where it is. (So if it was you, remind me, because it seemed interesting.)Siteseer has a good one, but I'm being to lazy to post it right now, because it's kind of long. Still, go check it out.

Last, we've been fighting the battle of the fruit flies. For some reason, we've been invaded. I have searched the web, done EVERYTHING I could to get rid of them, made all sorts of traps, and nothing has worked. So this morning, as I'm dealing with my poor sick baby, I see flies swarming my trap, but not dead. Which they've been doing for days now. So I hunted in the garage to find some sort of insecticide. I came up with wasp and hornet killer. I sprayed the flies on the traps, and every other fruit fly I could find. As of this post, it appears they are all dead. Dead, I tell you, dead.

So that, my friends, is what I've been up to since my last post.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Bee-cuhz ah'm tyhrd

Instead of what I think tonight, you get to learn what a silly Internet quiz thinks of me...

Your result for Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz...

You Are an Ingrid!


You are an Ingrid -- "I am unique"

Ingrids have sensitive feelings and are warm and perceptive.

How to Get Along with Me

  • * Give me plenty of compliments. They mean a lot to me.

  • * Be a supportive friend or partner. Help me to learn to love and value myself.

  • * Respect me for my special gifts of intuition and vision.

  • * Though I don't always want to be cheered up when I'm feeling melancholy, I sometimes like to have someone lighten me up a little.

  • * Don't tell me I'm too sensitive or that I'm overreacting!

What I Like About Being an Ingrid

  • * my ability to find meaning in life and to experience feeling at a deep level

  • * my ability to establish warm connections with people

  • * admiring what is noble, truthful, and beautiful in life

  • * my creativity, intuition, and sense of humor

  • * being unique and being seen as unique by others

  • * having aesthetic sensibilities

  • * being able to easily pick up the feelings of people around me

What's Hard About Being an Ingrid

  • * experiencing dark moods of emptiness and despair

  • * feelings of self-hatred and shame; believing I don't deserve to be loved

  • * feeling guilty when I disappoint people

  • * feeling hurt or attacked when someone misundertands me

  • * expecting too much from myself and life

  • * fearing being abandoned

  • * obsessing over resentments

  • * longing for what I don't have

Ingrids as Children Often

  • * have active imaginations: play creatively alone or organize playmates in original games

  • * are very sensitive

  • * feel that they don't fit in

  • * believe they are missing something that other people have

  • * attach themselves to idealized teachers, heroes, artists, etc.

  • * become antiauthoritarian or rebellious when criticized or not understood

  • * feel lonely or abandoned (perhaps as a result of a death or their parents' divorce)

Ingrids as Parents

  • * help their children become who they really are

  • * support their children's creativity and originality

  • * are good at helping their children get in touch with their feelings

  • * are sometimes overly critical or overly protective

  • * are usually very good with children if not too self-absorbed

Take Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz at HelloQuizzy

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #65: Stuff I'm allergic to

Thirteen Things about stuff I'm allergic to

I thought of this topic because my daughter is having mysterious reactions to food, and I think it's an allergy, but I can't figure out which food is triggering it. Took her to the doctor, who is mystified, so we're going to a specialist. So since I'm in the paranoid looking at symptoms mood, let me tell you about MY allergies:

1. Work. Definitely allergic to work.
2. Cleaning. The allergist wants to know how often I vacuum and dust. I have to use a dust mask, take an antihistamine, and I still feel like crap afterward, so I don't do it very often.
3. Benadryl. Seriously. I have a severe reaction to the standard med for allergies.
4. That Man. Again, you think I'm joking, but every time he walks into the room, I sneeze.
5. Our marital bed. Not making this up... if I go to bed, and he's in the bed, I have an allergy attack. If I go to bed and he's not in the bed, I'm fine. See, I really am allergic to my husband!
6. Wool. I bought some really pretty yarn to knit with, but it was wool, so my hands got all red and itchy and stuff.
7. Dander. If it's a furry animal, it makes me sick. Except my dog. For some reason, I'm fine with certain breeds, like Miniature Schnauzers.
8. Mold, Dust, Pollen. Who isn't?
9. Grass and Cologne. Separately and together. One of my boyfriends broke up with me because when he came to visit, he was wearing too much cologne, and the next day, they mowed the lawn outside the window where I worked, so I had a huge reaction, and got really sick. He decided it meant I was allergic to him, so he broke up with me. Really glad my husband keeps me around, even though I'm definitely allergic to him.
10. Watermelon. Any kind of melon really. Which stinks because I love melon, and it makes summertime absolutely unbearable.
11. Salmon. I used to be able to eat it just fine, but the past two times I've eaten it, it made the inside of my ears itch. I'm very depressed. Losing a source of Omega 3s is never good.
12. Cats. I'm convinced it's an emotional thing, since I used to love cats. But when my first pet cat died, the allergies started, and when my second one died, they became intolerable. I think their spirits haunt me, preventing me from getting close to another cat.
13. Did I say work yet? Because it seriously makes me really really sick.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

How we deal with telemarketers and political calls

First off, you should know that I hate talking on the phone anyway. There's a few friends I can talk to for hours, but most of the time, the phone ringing is nothing more than an irritating distraction I choose to ignore.


In these political times, I can't ignore the fact that my phone never stops ringing. Go away! I'm not voting for you because you bugged me. Period. I track who calls the most and then I vote for the other guy. So there.

My four year old, on the other hand, looooves the phone. She takes all the calls we don't want. Even the eight year old, when she's bored with whichever friend has called, will hand her the phone when she's done and the friend's not. The worst fact of my kiddo's life is that she's not allowed on the phone without permission. So she looooves it when she gets a turn.

So tonight, caller id announces it's yet another political call. I look at the four year old.

"Want to talk on the phone?"
"YES!" I hand her the phone, tell her to answer it, and tell whoever it is that Mommy is busy.

(It's loud enough I can hear what's going on)
"Hi. This is X from X Campaign. Is your mom or dad home?"
"Can we talk to them?"
"What do you want me to say to them?" She's looking at me because she's forgotten to tell them I'm busy.
"Just tell them we at X Campaign would like to talk to them about blah blah blah blah blah."

I'm thinking, this person is incredibly stupid for trying to give such a long message to such a small child, but whatever. The longer my kid keeps them on the phone, the more of their time and money we waste and the more I feel like I'm sticking it to the man.

"Can you just get your mom or dad?"
"No. They don't want to talk to you. You have to talk to me."

By this point, I'm sitting here, trying not to laugh hysterically because she thinks she's doing me a huge favor, and if I laugh, her feelings will be hurt. She thinks her gatekeeper job is the most important job on the planet.

"Little girl. This is very important. Do your parents know you're on the phone? Phones are for grownups."

And I'm thinking... I don't like people who are condescending to my children, so now you've really got no chance of ever getting me in person.

"I can talk on the phone if I want to. What do you want?"
"Can we talk to your parents?"
Now she remembers. "My mom's busy."
"Uh, we'll just call back later. Tell your mom and dad to vote for X."

Yeah, we'll be sure not to. But thanks for playing. Not only did I get a good laugh, but you gave me a blog topic. Next time you call, my kiddo is going to sing you a song. Those are the best. Or maybe I'll have her tell you about her Christmas list. She's already making one, and that's pretty funny to listen to her telling telemarketers. HA! Wouldn't that be funny. I'll vote for candidate X if you buy my kid all those ridiculous toys in the commercials.

I know, I'm a stinker. But you know, if you're going to call me without my permission, then I'm siccing my kids on you without your permission. Turnabout being fair play and all that.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Things that make you go aw!!

Tonight, when I got home from teaching my class, my little one handed me a scribble paper and said, "Mom, I made this for you. Listen to what I wrote."

Here it is. The sweetest thing...

Mom, I love you like America.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. And to the republic, for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Okay, so I realize she's only four and probably doesn't fully understand what that means... but it was still the cutest thing in the world to hear my little girl, saying with absolute sincerity, that she loved me like America, and stood there, reciting the pledge as though it was the most solemn vow because it somehow expressed how much she loves me.

Love that girl!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Saturday Christian Fiction Carnival

So let's try something new, and since I have exactly six minutes left in Saturday, I'm going to participate. Plus, I have absolutely no idea what to blog about. So let's join in the Saturday Christian Fiction Carnival.

Here's the question:

Why do you read and review Christian fiction? Do you exclusively read Christian fiction or do you also read general market books?

My Answer:

I like to read and review Christian fiction because there are a lot of great books out there people need to know about.

And yes, I also read general market books. Love books of all kinds and love sharing the ones I love.

Anyone else care to take a stab?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #64: Things in my fridge

Thirteen Things about what's in my fridge

1. Cheeseburgers from last week I need to throw out.
2. Pea soup.
3. Sauerkraut and sausage
4. Milk
5. Ratatouille
6. Ketchup
7. Lime Juice
8. Yogurt
9. eggs
10. Misc veggies
11. a variety of salad dressings
12. mustard
13. butter (the real stuff)

I'd take a picture, but the kiddos lost the camera. I should also mention this isn't an all-inclusive list. I do have vulture children, after all, so if I don't have a full fridge, they eat the furniture.

So what's in YOUR fridge?

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Unusual Thoughts on the election

I'm going to admit right now to a bit of election angst. I've always pretty much voted with one particular party, however, there are a number of things this party wants to implement that really scare me. However, the other party is no better. I'm terrified of a few things they want to implement.

A friend of mine and I were talking and one of the interesting commentaries that came out of it was the question, how is this a democracy when our only choices are the lesser of two evils? When the choice is to choose which policy will hurt our families and countries the least?

I don't think we really have a choice. I don't think this is democracy.

Because I really don't know what the answer is, I decided that the best answer was to pray. To say, God, I want to cast the right vote, but I'd really like to look beyond my own self interest and conflicting feelings to choose the right candidate.

The answer surprised me. It was, simply, vote for the candidate you don't want to win.


As I prayed and reflected on Scripture, the reasoning was pretty clear. Do I trust God with the election? Do I trust His sovereignty and know that regardless of who takes office in January, HE will be in control? Throughout history, we've had good rulers and bad. Biblically, we've seen examples of life under persecution and life under reasonable peace. God had a plan.

God still has a plan, whether we greet President Obama or President McCain after the election. He's got it under control.

But because part of our responsibilities as Americans is that we are to vote, we need to vote on election day. We do need to educate ourselves on the things we're voting for or against. However, we also need to recognize that when all the votes have been counted, the hanging chads argued over, in the end, God is still God. No matter who ends up in the White House, this is still His country.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The one thing you don't want to miss

I've really been enjoying the song, One Life to Love by 33 Miles, which, by the by, is a FREE download on iTunes through Monday. You can click this link:

The chorus talks about having only one shot at the one thing you don't want to miss... I've been thinking a lot about that thought lately.

What's the one thing I don't want to miss?

Today, my sweet B turned 8.

The plan was for me to post something very sweet about her, showing pictures of how she's grown. Sadly, not a lot of her baby pics are digital and/or are somewhere in hubby's compy and I can't find them. However, I've spent the past couple of hours looking through all the photos on my computer, and I am overwhelmed by all the memories. So many moments. Some I remember so clearly. Some I don't. Others I wish would've happened differently. And many that until I looked back, I failed to appreciate just what magic they were.

For example, we often refer to the youngest as "The Terrorist." As I looked at pics of B at the same age and younger, I can remember some of the stories behind the pics... feeling frustrated because she was acting like such a monster. I forgot that we called B "The Monster."

The same little girl who, this past week at parent teacher conferences, was called "delightful." Her teacher couldn't say enough good about her. She's eager to learn, well-liked by the other students and staff, at or above grade level on all of her subjects. We walked through the book fair and a couple of girls randomly hugged her. I asked her what it was about and she looked genuinely confused. "I don't know, Mom, for some reason, everyone likes to hug me."

I know the reason.

I am so humbled by the incredible children we're raising. Friday night, we had a conversation with the senior in high school about her future plans. I was so amazed at what a level-headed young lady she's becoming. She's so intent on her goals. Tonight, hubby and I were talking about the college guy and how he's making some decisions requiring a great deal of maturity. I once spent hours on my knees over those two and the scrapes they got into. And here they are... not perfect, not done yet, but wow... I am in awe.

My daughter's teacher told us that it's clear she's in a good home with good parents raising her right. My friend Amy once told me that I was a good example to her and that she had a lot of admiration for me as a parent. So many days, I sit here, crying, praying, wondering how I'm going to get through the next day. How either my children or I will not survive their childhood.

I will tell you with all the honesty in me that any success I have had as a parent is because the Lord has carried us through it all. One of my favorite verses is I Samuel 7:12, where Samuel sets up a stone he names Ebenezer because "Thus far, the Lord helped us." As I looked through the photos tonight, I realized how many of them are Ebenezers to me. At each moment, I could clearly see, "thus far, the Lord has helped us."

When I look at the one thing I don't want to miss... this is it.

Each moment is so precious. Even the most desperate, the scariest, and yes, those times where the camera captures the absolute horror and panic over the latest horror the children have put me through. Those moments are the times when we can look back and clearly see just how God has helped us. You can't pick any single one of them to miss, because through the good and through the bad, God's mercy and grace shines through. And trust me, you don't want to miss it.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Precious Moments

As many of you know, my Panera time is precious. It's my get away from it all and focus on writing time that I get three days a week. I savor that time. This week, I lost two days of Panera time. Monday, I volunteered at my daughter's book fair while the little one was in preschool. Today, B was off school, so I had her with me.

I have to admit, I've been a little resentful about giving up my Panera time. Summer without Panera time was miserable.

Last week, when my daughter was telling about being off school, realizing that her sister still had school, she said in a very excited tone, "Mommy! I get to have special Panera time with you!"

Again, because I am a less than perfect mommy, I thought, "GRR! That's MY time!" But I smiled and said, "sure, we can go to Panera."

As the days for our joint Panera venture drew near, her excitement grew. All she could talk about was how she got to go to Panera with Mommy. And I realized, how awesome is that to know that the very best thing my daughter could think of was going to her mom's favorite place to have a cup of tea and spend time together? One day, she's going to be too busy, or maybe not interested in hanging out with her old mom. How precious that I get that time now.

And then I thought of these folks I see regularly at Panera. It's an older couple, and they're there every time I am, having a cup of coffee and reading the paper. But every once and a while, their daughter joins them with her baby. I first noticed them when she was pregnant, and over the past year, I've watched her baby grow up.

At Panera, I've seen groups of little old ladies doing their Bible study, multi-generational groups come together to knit, businessmen doing their deals, people getting hired, people getting fired, and I can't help but think what an honor it is that I get to be a part of it all, even if it's only from a distance.

So today, I brought my little girl to Panera. I got my tea, she got hot chocolate. We shared a bagel. She told me about a song she's writing about the invisible friend sitting next to us that everyone has. God. She was so passionate about sharing that with me. I realized that if we'd stayed home, I'd have spent the morning yelling at her to clean her room or something like that. But because we went to Panera, we shared breakfast, we shared conversation, and we shared lives.

I hope that 10 or 15 years from now, she still wants to go to Panera with me. And it still makes her feel as special as she felt, walking through those doors, head high, smile on her face, and joy in her heart. And maybe, someone else who goes to Panera on the same days we do will watch her grow up the way I've watched this other baby, and it will bring the same blessing it's brought me.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #63: Learning to knit

Thirteen Things about learning to Knit

One of my friends, the lovely Camy Tang, is a knitter. Over the past couple of months, I've gotten to spend time with her, and each time, she's amazed me with her skill. And the fact that while the rest of us were bored out of our gourds, she had something to do.

So... I've taken up knitting. Here's what my experience has been like so far:

1. Long tail cast-on... I spent an hour trying to figure it out and just could not get it right. I kept ending up with three loops instead of one. Camy laughed when I called her to tell her that.

2. I went to church, and found myself praying about knitting because I thought it'd be really cool to knit in church. (Is it rude to knit in church? I hope not!)

3. God must've liked that idea, because I came home, picked up the needles and was able to cast-on perfectly on the first try.

4. I think my needles are too big, because I keep getting tangled in them.

5. I also should not have gotten aluminum needles. The stuff keeps falling off. Camy says this happens with aluminum.

6. I really like knittinghelp.com for the information. I've been learning to knit from the videos alone.

7. Both Camy and my friend Allie (who is also a knitting queen) said Continental is easiest. I could not figure out how to get the stitch right until I saw this website.

8. I've been told knitting is a good stress reliever. I'm finding it semi-true... I like it when I'm in sync, but when I mess up, I get stressed.

9. I also think knitting will be a great way to make me more menacing... don't mess with me because I've got a pointy thing. HA!

10. One of my plans for knitting is that I'm going to use it as a prayer tool... as I knit a stitch, I'll be praying for something different. So far, it's pretty cool.

11. My kids are really excited that I'm knitting. Once I get the hang of it, I'm going to make it a mother/daughter thing.

12. Here is what I've done so far. Totally crappy, but totally mine. Love it!

13. Despite my progress, I still have not figured out how to untangle my yarn.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Lazy Jane

I’ve been wrestling with this topic lately because someone I know is disappointed with things God has not done in her life. Where is God? Why is she still waiting on the promises He’s made?

I looked at her list and I thought… maybe God is waiting on her.

It reminds me of a poem by one of my favorite poets, Shel Silverstein. Lazy Jane wants a drink of water, so rshe lays there and waits it for it to rain. He says it better, but don’t want to infringe on copyright, so look it up.
Sometimes we’re Lazy Jane when it comes to God. We want a drink of water, but instead of doing the obvious, and turning on the faucet, we sit with our mouths open and say, “God! Where are you?” He’s sitting up there saying, “The sink is ten feet in front of you!”

Granted, sometimes, God will put water in our mouths. But a lot of the time, He’s put the water out there and is just waiting for us to get up and get it.
I’ve been guilty of this often enough. “Lord, fix this situation in my life.” Then I sit back and wait for Him to wave His magic wand and make it all better. It’s amazing how many times, when I go ahead and take that first step, He comes alongside me and starts to make things happen.

What have you asked God for? Is there something you can do to take a step in the direction of that thing? Because maybe, it’s not so much that He’s asking you to wait, but He’s pointing at the sink, waiting for you to get up and turn it on.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #62: Influential Books

Thirteen Things about Influential books

A lifelong bibliophile, I thought it would be fun to share the books that have most influenced my life and why... be surprised!

1. Secret of the Old Clock by Carolyn Keene. My first "chapter book". I read it when I was five. Borrowed it from an older neighbor girl and have been hooked ever since.

2. Witch's Harvest by Sara Craven. My first taste of Harlequins... mmm... yummy. And yes, I'm still an addict. Go figure.

3. The Spring of the Tiger by Victoria Holt. Not my first Holt, which was Legend of the Seventh Virgin (I know, I'm scary with remembering books), but she's another writer whose stuff I can't get enough of. Actually, she's my all-time favorite author.) Anyway, this was the first book that made me bawl my eyes out. I know the ending is supposed to be happy, but it wasn't very satisfying for me. I hated that Clayton's redeeming moment was his death.

4. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis. Having not grown up in a Christian environment, I remember reading this book and thinking, "What? The guy who wrote those books I loved as a kid is a Christian?" It definitely made me rethink what I thought a Christian was and what I thought a Christian could write about.

5. The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning. Probably the best reflection of who I am in my faith. LOVE this book.

6. I, Claudius by Robert Graves. My friend Jaime and I read this back in middle school. We thought we were so grown up for reading something so beyond what middle schoolers read. Still, I find the intrigue fascinating.

7. Hamlet by William Shakespeare. This really just shows how loony I am... I think I am one of the few people on the planet who thinks this should be labeled as one of his comedies, not a tragedy. I get giggles just thinking about it... "Get thee to a nunnery!"

8. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. LOVE this book. Weird, because I need happy endings, but I always figured that Scarlett would've won him back in the end. I actually liked Scarlett. Hmmm... maybe that's why I have a hard time with likable heroines.

9. Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel. I KNOW! Some of you who know me well are thinking I'm nuts since I am such an advocate of happy endings. And no, I do not think it was a happy ending. Spoiler: They DIED. But there is something very beautiful and captivating about her writing that makes me read this book over and over. And even though they died, there is something incredibly powerful and romantic about the love they shared.

10. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway. Another weird book, since I haven't actually finished it. The bookmark is still at about 1/5 of the book. However, after reading that much of it, I can tell you why the guy was an alcoholic. Frankly, I had to stop reading it, otherwise, I'd become one myself. Wow, that stuff was dry. Anyway, this book taught me that while I love to read, a connoisseur of what others define as fine literature I am not.

11. The Republic by Plato. I am fascinated by this book. I actually almost just picked it up and started reading it again just now, but I held back. Each time I read it, I come away with something different, and sometimes even contradictory from what I last took away. This book makes me think a lot about life and government. Probably a good book for the election.

12. Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. This should be every writer's bible. Really great book that reminds me to accept my writing process and go with it.

13. The Bible by God. I almost left this off the list, because I didn't want to sound trite. Every Christian names the Bible. And the truth is, I don't read it as much as I should, understand it as much as I want, and feel woefully inadequate when it comes to talking about this book. But everything in my life, everything I read, always draws me back to this one book. This one story that is the ultimate romance, the ultimate mystery, and the ultimate battle where good triumphs over evil. And in my opinion, those three things are absolutely necessary to make any read worth my time.

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