Friday, May 29, 2009

Mary, Mary, How does your garden grow???

In 3 4 x4 beds instead of a row !

Over the last few years, I've been pondering and begging for raised garden beds. I saw an article several years ago on square foot gardening, and it finds its way into my dreams every spring since. This year, several of my friends were building gardens of their own .... so I begged harder. (Cuz, you know, I have to keep up with the Jones'. No, not really. Our friends just told us it wasn't as pricey as we had thought it would be, thus making it a little more realistic for us.) Aaron, as loving as he is, agreed. I ran right out and bought all the supplies for him to build me 3 4x4 beds. My friend Lindsay came to help me level them in our yard. (Lindsay ... why don't I have any pictures of you slaving ????) I filled them all up. Eden and Aaron put the grids on for the final touch. Mom-in-law showed up just in time to help me and the kids plant!

Hopefully, I'll see the fruits of our labor. Haha ... lame joke, sorry. Besides, it'd just be the vegatables of our labor. I didn't plant any fruit. Hopefully soon, we will have a harvest full of luttuce, spinach, carrots, peas, onions, beans, soybeans, pepper, cucumber, winter and summer squash, pumpkins, corn, and few pretty flowers just for looks. That's if I don't kill them all first....

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Stupid Kids (and yes, stupid is a bad word and one should not use it)

There are a handful of things I dread about my kids getting older. One of them being stupid kids. Perhaps that is the overarching drive behind all my fears ... but whatever.

Tonight I tucked the girls in, and about 30 minutes later, I hear sobs coming from their room. I go in, and to my surprise, it's my tough girl Providence. I asked her what was wrong. She said she was scared. I asked why. She said that she was scared about a story a girl told her at school. I asked what the story was about. (Okay, and I asked who told it to her, because there has been one little girl in particular who thinks she's an adult - and her parents encourage it, I think. Provi told me this girl was reading the Twilight books, AND saw the movie. WHAT??? Anyway ....) She said .... Bloody Mary. Ho-hum. Do you remember that horror story as a kid? I sure do. Only ... I don't remember being that young when I first heard it. I remember the sleepover where I first heard it, and I really feel like it was junior high. Maybe not ... I don't know. I know that at that same party, we were using a Wji board, and trying to hold seances, and playing "light as a feather, stiff as a board". (Mental note - no sleepovers ... EVER.) I shudder as I think of how many doors that childhood nonsense opened in my heart and mind. And now it is my daughter dealing with it. I'm so thankful she had the openess to tell me about it. I'm always afraid my kids will fear getting in trouble for things other kids are putting on them ... I digress.

So what's a mom to do??? Of course pray for her, pray with her. I fear ever having to tell my children any of my failures in this life, and yet I feel like it will be necessary at times. This was one of those times, and I was actually thankful for my not-always-so-innocent childhood. I was able to look her in the face and without her having to replay the story out of her sweet little lips ask her, "wasn't there a mirror in the story?"
"Yes", she wimpers.
"Do you see any mirrors in here?"
"No", she breathes in.
"Well that is that. But then, you know what else? That story has been around since I was a girl, and probably longer. And you know what else?"
"What?", sniffling now.
"I was actually ... don't ever say this word ... stupid enough to try it! I looked into that mirror and said it, and look at me. I'm here. THE STORY WASN'T TRUE!"
"Do you want me to pray with you?"
"Yes", she says calming now.
Then we talked about her "rainbow dream"....that is our phrase for something sweet that we want to dream about that we can fall asleep thinking about. (Because counting sheep just didn't work.) She chose Candy Land. (Not the board game, but a story she is writing where the trees are made of skittles, and the trunks are made of bacon .... her favorite. :) Yum, skittles minjon!)

This was one time where God used my mistakes to calm my child, and for that I'm thankful. I only pray she takes my word for it with many other things ....

I'm not ready for this part of parenting ..... my baby is growing up .... the world is more twisted than it was when I grew up .... innocence is being lost younger and younger. Lord help me!

Monday, May 11, 2009

The Apostle Paul has sent you a friend request

Can you imagine if all the current technology, or more specifically, today's means of communication existed when the Bible was being written? Especially most of the new testament ... the Epistles. Picture it.

The Apostle Paul has sent you a friend request.
How do you know the Apostle Paul?
The Apostle Paul has written on your wall.
Status Updates : Apostle Paul thinks that Jews and Gentiles should worship together in one body of Christ.
The Apostle Paul has uploaded a photo from his iphone of prison.

Or what if Paul just had a blog. Would the professional scribe, Tertius, know what to do?

Do I really have any clue about scribes in bible times, or a man named Tertius? Not really. Today however, I read a bit about it. It was actually quite fascinating ... obviously, it made my mind wander to today's style of communication. I was reading about Greek and Roman letter writing. About how letter writing began as a means of official communication for military affairs and governmental administration. It went on to tell about the development of paper. (Can you even imagine living with no paper? That's one of those convieniences that we forget didn't always exist. Just like email, right? Right ....) Even after the development of paper, it was still complicated to send letters due to the lack of our beloved USPS. Letter writing in the New Testament era really only manifested in existing, or aquantences. It stated that "letters were meant to fulfill three basic purposes; to provide basic or necessary information, to make requests of a social superior or give instructions to a subordinate, and to maintain and develop the personal relationship between the correspondents. The letter served as a substitue for the actual presence of the writer."

Why this all sent my brain spinning between then and now, I don't know. It did make me question the current set ups of email, facebook, blogs, twitter, cell phones, etc.... How times have changed. And while I'm thankful for the conviences we have today ... even from when I was a kid ... I mean, seriouslly, I had to stand in one spot in the kitchen to talk on the phone - well, until my dad got that 30 foot phone cord, that was cool. Anyway ... has the reason for communicating really changed that much since Pauls day? Of course, as a result of our ever growing technology, more and more people have been able to even hear of this man named Paul ... even better, a man named Jesus. For that, I'm thankful, and I believe God has blessed man's efforts to communicate more effectively.

More effectively ... that is where I continue getting hung up a bit on modern communication. I still wrestle with my community being centered around my computer. I still wrestle with my heart being heard through blogger (sometimes). I still wrestle, with Aaron mostly, on the purpose of status updates ... are we egotistical, only thinking of ourselves, or are we yearning to communicate more openly with those in our lives. As I was pondering such things, God gently reminded me of this - my life is to reflect Him, and His gospel. In whatever form that is manifested - it will always remain true. He reminds me that for from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. (Rom 11:36). Then the kicker for me - He reminded me to, "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths (or out of your computer), but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear (or read or see if it's those nice photo uploading thingies). (Eph. 4:29, italics mine - obviosly) Straight from my heart, through my mouth, or into my computer for the world to read are often things that shouldn't be. I shudder. Forgive me Lord. May my words, be they spoken or written bless you. May they point others to you.

When is the last time you even used paper that didn't come through your printer??? :)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

I HEART Garage Sales

I've been feeling a little bit like I'm being swallowed whole by clutter. I don't like that. Most of the clutter is the kids stuff .... so what's a mom to do, really? I've been trying to figure out if the problem is too much stuff (again, kids stuff), or not enough storage space. It's both probably. One other issue I've been having is the placement of our computer. I have an "office" area set up in our bedroom. However, the computer kept sticking out it's legs and walking over to the kitchen counter. After a while, I stopped trying to contain it back in it's home. Thus it has sat next to our kitchen sink for several months just begging for a drink of water. The fact that we refused for so long is only through the grace of God.

Blah, blah, blah. I love garage sales! This weekend was the jackpot for me! One of the towns near me had their town garage sales. I've gone the last several years and always leave happy. This year was no different! Look what I found !!!!

A cute little desk, which matches my home perfectly I might add, for our computer to sit in the kitchen with us where it likes to ... only not next to the sink. $10 !!! I guess it used to have a hutch of sorts on it, so the whole top portion has no paint on it. I was more than thrilled to use the black scarf that came from Ethiopia as a cover up!

Now here is a shot of what I was talking about before with the kids. Too much stuff, not enough storage ... times 4 kids. Ugh. Here is a before garage sale shot of the boys room.

6 trash bags later (this included the girls room getting cleaned too) and one little toy chest later, this is what it looks like now....

Before the toy chest, this was the norm for the boys toys. There was nothing else to do with them.

Red chest solution .... $3. (Plus it came with a ton of little boy soldier, dragon, dinosaur toys that the kids have not stopped playing with. Great .... more toys! Oh well, there's a place to store them now!)
Here is the girls room now. There are no before pictures, because it was just wrong in so many ways. The girls needed to purge some things for sure. (Which asking Eden to throw away anything ... especially receipts and clothing tags ... is pure torture. Seriously, the child acts as if you are making her give up her first born.) Other things just got moved to the toy room. On top of that, I feel like with Providence being almost 9, it's time to start moving out some of the little girl things and bring in some tween things. (I hate that word, tween. Why did I use it then??? Dunno.) For their room, I found this great neon green butterfly chair with matching pillows and a large storage bag (not pictured). $10 for all of it! They love it! I even caught Provi reading in it today ... not even prompted by Aaron or I to do so!

Besides all that, I also found some brand new shoes for Malachi -$3. One of those tricycles that you can push until the child knows how to ride on their own - $5. A Leapster Video Game thing that had only been used two times - $5. And a bunch of board books for M! Yippee!

Anyway, I know most people don't care about the condition of my kids rooms, or my garage sale finds ... but for the few of you (hi mom, hi sisters!) I know you can share in my excitement!

Now the question remains ... how long until the toys are all over the floor again anyway despite their new found homes? Have you ever seen that sign that says,
" My house was clean yesterday, sorry you missed it." ???
Now I have proof. :)

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Thursday, May 7, 2009

My arthritis is flaring up

No, it's not. I'm just making note of the drastic changes in our weather here in Colorado. Wasn't it just snowing 2 weeks ago? Wasn't I just making a fool of myself with my tupperware tents for my tulips? (Say that 5 times fast.)

Yesterday was quite the different picture here at the Britton household.

Malachi had his first experience with the hose. He absolutely LOVED it! I guess 85 degrees is warm enough to the kids to be drenched with freezing cold hose water. I think I remember that as a child .... This is also the first year all of the kids have loved it! Usually it's just Providence, and sometimes Sam that get into it. What a fun summer is ahead of us!

Providence and Eden kept exclaiming that this was the most fun ever! How sweet. Warning to my neighbors - I may be forced to join in the fun the warmer it gets!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Baby Britton Blurb

My concern over my tulips must really be effecting the kids. Here was Eden's concern that she voiced at dinner tonight.....

Eden - "I'm glad I'm not a tulip, because then I'd get dead and the gopher would eat me."

I agreed.