Wednesday, October 17, 2012

corners to create...and God in a mailbox.

we've finally gotten a hold on this homeschooling thing.  seems it's flowing and we are able to introduce "extras"into our schedule without it seeming overwhelming or that we are falling behind (example: an occasional trip to the gym, women's Bible study, friends coming over in the mornings, doctors appointments, field trips to the zoo and the Henry Ford museum...things that may alter our day a bit, and change up the time we choose to do school, but allow us the flexibility to add them in, enjoy them, and still accomplish what we need to for the week).  
i love to create, and i'm enjoying the extra corners of freedom and flexibility that homeschooling has allowed for this within our home.  on a school note, i have really liked the history curriculum we are using.  there are many ideas for projects that we can incorporate into our lesson plans.  over the past month or so we have studied ancient china, africa, and egypt.  here are a few of our creations:

 Ancient China: Ming Bowls
Nomad paintings
 Ancient Africa: Paper Bead Necklaces
and Ancient Egypt: Gold Bangle Bracelets
Henry Ford Museum: Titanic Exhibit
The Detroit Zoo

while homeschooling has been going well and is in full swing, 
i've been struggling with discouragement in other areas for the past week or so.  same old circumstantial scenario that keeps plaguing this heart of mine.
today it left me feeling lacking and lifeless.

in addition to this, it seems everywhere around me there is illness and people dying on the outside.  it burdens my heart so.  and while i trust that God is in control and His thoughts and plans are better than my own, i'm still holding onto so many questions as of "why?"...  i know our prayers are heard.  i do not yet see the answers.  i choose to walk by faith and not by sight, but at times it's all too easy to break down and grow weary.    
too many tears already shed today.  and with unanswered prayers threatening one to feel invisible, i audibly cried out some more to the only One i know who will truly offer the hope and peace that's needed.  an hour or so later i made my way out to the mailbox (or as i have recently called it, "the box of discouragement" due to all of the bills that keep coming our way, piling onto our existing mountain) and found a card in there from a friend hoping to send a little piece of encouragement my way.  the scripture inside the card reads: 

"God will take care of everything you need." 
Philippians 4:19
(The Message)

His timing is always right on.  on a day i lacked strength, and weariness and discouragement were taking over...on a day i was beginning to let worry consume (even though i am not a worrier at heart)...on a day i was beginning to feel invisible, HE showed up right there in my mailbox with a gentle and faithful reminder.
and His creativity in doing so blows my mind...
showing up in a "spot" where I have felt the most discouraged:
the daily mail.
isn't that like our God?
the God who knows.
and cares.
about every detail of our lives.
even when we feel unheard.
or invisible.
He chooses to prove otherwise.

when it seems like everything around me is dying on the outside, i'm finding strength today that His very Spirit within me is alive on the inside.
providing enough to sustain...
and leaving me with more corners to see and create
a life of love and learning
and (at times, broken) praise
within my heart
and my home.
because He is everywhere,
worthy of being sought...
and just Good and Faithful enough
to show up when we need Him most,
wherever we're at...
even if it's

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Saying "I do" to the ways and wonder of the "Moose-Muffin" life

Anyone familiar with the "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie/ If You Give a Moose a Muffin/ If You Give a Pig a Pancake" books?  Well, some days I feel like my life is much like those side-tracked, slightly chaos-driven, motivated, busily-being-busy characters.  Or maybe it's just "Housewife ADD."  
Either way it led me to this post.

What started as a trip to Target to exchange a pair of jeans Berlyn got for her birthday from her Aunt, ended in a little mother-daughter photo shoot at home late this afternoon.  Let me rewind my Moose- Muffin mind and explain:

New jeans for Berlyn= run upstairs to quickly put them away at home= realize there is no room left in her dresser to store them= clean out the summer and outgrown clothes from her dresser drawers= straighten up her room in the process= put away her basket of clean laundry that's been sitting on her floor for days= 1/4 of the laundry in her laundry basket was her older sister's (courtesy of a very helpful hubby trying to ease my load)= move on to Brooke's room to put away leftover clean clothes= clean out her armoire while I'm in there= get rid of summer clothes and clothes she's outgrown= start adding to the piles of clothing to donate/sell at our church's upcoming Mom 2 Mom sale this Saturday= clean out her closet and do the same= take summer clothes that she is keeping and store them up in her brother's closet (where her winter clothes are currently waiting to be brought down)= exchange them out= notice a white trash bag on Brayden's top closet shelf that is holding my unintentionally unpreserved wedding gown of almost 12 years= pull it out and reminisce= slightly feel remorse that I hadn't taken better care of it and had it preserved= remembering all of the pinterest inspired ideas I've come across or heard about from friends and sisters who have also been taking a picture of your daughter in your wedding dress while she's little, and giving the picture to her, when she's grown up, on her own wedding day= grab my raggedy girls right there in the upstairs hallway and take advantage of the thought and the moment=  "little girls in their mama's wedding gown" fashion show= the pictures below...

and besides a few tears from my middle one (because of an older brother who teased),
i sat on that wooden aisle hallway and married a few moments of loveliness, 
pure and unblemished joy 
white with endless possibility. 
 wonder spilled out like satin from the heart, 
smooth as silk. 
with billowing pearled train of dreams,
and lace-whispered covenant to choose grace 
and gratitude with this one Moose-Muffin life.
and so
i do.