Sunday, January 07, 2018

Marine Corps Bootcamp - 2018 - New Beginnings

So my beautiful, amazing, strong, brave daughter leaves for the Marine Corps tomorrow at 4:30 am. She will travel to Parris Island, South Carolina, to start her new life as a Marine. There are no words to adequately express the tumult of emotions fighting for supremacy inside my heart. She is fiercely loved and we are very proud of her.

This was supposed to happen on Wednesday of last week, with less than 24 hour notice. By the grace of God via the ice storms on the east coast, we were given a few days' reprieve, and a few more days to say goodbye. It was a mercy to us. I was not prepared to let her go so quickly. I am not sure that any mother is really prepared to say goodbye, because I wasn't totally prepared for the goodbye that came when my oldest got married almost two years ago--even though we loved her fiance and knew it was the right life choice for her. It is terribly hard to say goodbye. 

I have now lived as a mother longer than the years I was without children, and my life is enmeshed in that role and way of living. The severing of that place, in the day to day, has been harder than I ever though it would be. I entirely embraced my role as a mama and would not trade places with anyone for anything for those 23 years of my life. It is hard though, to say goodbye. It is hard for things to change. It is a tearing away of what was to create what is and wow, is it ever painful. 

But it is right and good. God designed the family in such a way to lay the foundation for the rest of the lives of our children. We are only temporary guardians for these precious gifts we are given in our children. We are only temporary, but He is eternal. He is their eternal Father and the One that guides them in their paths - even when they don't know He is doing it. God is all sovereign, and all supreme.

I was overcome with sadness this week. My friend shared the truth of God with me:

Keep remembering Who has all of this stuff wrapped up, pre-planned, and WON already. Rest in Him. Find your peace in the Lord. She is in HIS hands and that is a very good place. 

God is able, all the time, to do whatever He wishes for our GOOD and His GLORY. As she leaves tomorrow, I will try very hard to rest in that truth. God is truth, and His word is there for us to rest in. 

Friends with little ones - love them; enjoy them; pray for them. The time you have is very short. Remember the gifts you have while you still have them. 

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thanksgiving, 2017

First Thanksgiving is always the weekend before the "real day" but it helps the whole family see more of each other and then see our spouse's family. Here are some photos from our fun event. Not everyone is represented here, and I wish in hindsight that I'd taken more photos!

So many of my babies are grown - three out of five are now adults. Life comes at you fast!

It was lovely to see the aunts and uncles and my cousin Byron and his beautiful wife, Judy, were also there in addition to other cousins. It's a real blessing to have family that love each other. I know not everyone does. We will get to spend actual T-day with more family on my husband's side. God is a giver of good gifts!!

I hope your Thanksgiving is as lovely as ours was. May your focus be on the good gifts that come from above.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Cranberry Orange Bread

We are prepping for our annual early Thanksgiving weekend and I am in charge of all things cranberry. That means cranberry bread and cranberry sauce as well as some form of rolls that do not involve any cranberries at all. I am still mulling over that one.

One of the many pluses of blogging is that when I cannot locate a recipe in my gigantic recipe holder, I check my blog. Many of my favorites have been shared here and this is no exception. :D This was posted WAY back in 2013 when I had all five children still at home!

This recipe has been a family favorite for many many years and I make it every year. It is hard to keep our hands off of it when it comes out of the oven it is just SO good. If you love oranges and cranberries together then this is for you.

So, for you lovers of cranberry out there, I give you my Cranberry Orange Bread. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

TOS Magazine is Giving Away a Vitamix!

The folks that make this awesome magazine right here!

Is Giving Away a Vitamix!

I am pretty excited about this giveaway as a Vitamix is an epic machine that can do almost anything in the kitchen! So how do you enter? Click the link below! :) 

Saturday, April 15, 2017

By His Grace Alone We Are Saved

On this Easter, 2017, let us never forget that it is by His work alone on the cross that we are saved from the punishment for our sins. He took that punishment for us - bore our sins - that we might be raised up with Christ; that He might show the immeasurable riches of HIS grace.

I am so grateful.