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Saturday, October 5, 2013

Pride Comes Before Sleepless Nights

Our favorite way to sleep
" Just think honey, she'll be sleeping through the night before she even gets home!". Famous last words I spoke to my hubby while 6 months pregnant with our sweet baby girl. We knew she was destined to be in the NICU and likely be in there for at least 3 months. Not awesome. However if you spend a minute in Weir,Tx you know we are prone to look at the sunny side of life. There it was, the proverbial silver lining in an otherwise crap situation.

Miracle of all miracles tiny girl was home in one month and one day! Awesome!! Un-awesome was that we had to wake her every TWO hours. Never mind that I had already been up every night since she was born every 3 hours to pump. It's one thing to nurse a newborn every 3 hours, cuddling your bundle. But to be hooked to a machine like a common cow is not especially fun. Not a schedule in sight for Selah Jane or momma.
At six months we're given the green light to 'let her cry it out and sleep on through the night'....
Oh hell to the no.

First thing miss doctor pants, is I was away from this precious angel for 32 days every single night. I cried many nights missing her. I cried driving home missing her. As far as I could tell there's be no more crying up in here.

Second, little ma'am was so used to getting her tiny belly satisfied every few hours she wasn't buying the "new" routine.
Enter extremely tired me.
Many nights I begged the Lord to help her sleep. Begged people. I prayed night after night, I fasted, I told Him His Word says He gives sleep to those He loves!! Then I was all sassy tantrum about it and said, " fine! I guess You just don't love me then!!".
Can you just see God face palming Himself and shaking His head?

Rocking little girl one night I had a revelation.
I had spent so much time away from her that she AND I needed these quiet moments together. We needed to love on one another, to bond more, to get away from the chaos that comes with Weir,Tx.

I needed time with our Savior to pray over her, to ask for extra grace each morning with my other people.
I needed time with Him in the quiet wee hours of the day to just sit, to hear Him whisper, " I do love you. More than you can even comprehend."

In the past thirteen months I haven't slept more than 4 hours at a time. And that would be a great night ya'll. But I have known the Lord like never before. More than ever I know His ways are not my ways and you know what? They are so much better.

I've stopped praying that she'd sleep. It will come. It did for everyone else. I've since started praying to see His goodness in the midst of the tired days. To see His hand carrying me through another day with joy.

Friday, October 4, 2013

A Baby Changes Everything


I sat down to write this post 3 weeks because my morning had been hilarious with my Wheelie. Twenty one days later I'm back with more perspective on the subject at hand. Perspectives like my older children will grow up ignorant, and at the very least my little guy may never learn to read.

This year for HS we have a 7th grader, 5th, 2nd and the ever exciting kindergarten!! Let's here it for chewing crayons and sniffing paste! Except that's not the over all expectation for our kinders any more. Schooling the babes is really really daunting this year. Did I say daunting? Maybe FREAKING SCARY!! Yes, that sums it up.

Now imagine if you will for a moment adding a charming toddler to that mix. Shazaam! You got yourself a genuine circus. I give you, the morning this post started...

Tiny Koala attached at the hip while cooking oatmeal, for her and myself so I have fuel to feed her later and teach and exercise and wash clothes and cook meals and and and and...

Tiny Koala grabbing at legs after eating because she is now petrified of the cat. Super.

Take Tiny Koala into bathroom to play while I attempt a shower, and maybe just maybe get my hairs did for the day.

TK screams at the door because, unbeknownst to me, I'm now in a vortex of terror and might not ever come out. Babies are so weird.

Finally TK is at peace with the world on account of the fact that she has found the treasure that is my cabinet holding priceless gems such as cotton balls. Ok, babies are weird, and a mite dumb.

Tiny but mighty
Only a few minutes into the hairs doing and TK is wielding a box of razors. Awesome. Meh, their sort of closed with that little plastic thingy, can't be too dangerous.


School time, just. need. to. read. one. chapter. I give the picture you see here..  This day, oh this day.

You might be thinking, "you know what's easier?" Public school. You know what I'm saying right back at you? " damn right it's easier!" You know what else?? It's a hell of a lot cheaper, neater, and less time consuming than my current gig. If I didn't home school my people I could take care of this mischief maker and live in peace with my coffee and scone.
Yep totally a lot of ways this could all be simpler. Except that's not my style. That's not God's style for me.

Recently after whining about a few aches and pains, a "friend" said to me , "well honey that's why God never intended for women to have babies in their forties. Pardon? Did she just say that to my face? I guess she must be right. Except there's the whole God created Selah Jane thing, and I imagine had He not wanted me to have her then He WOULDN"T HAVE CREATED HER YOU MORON!!
People are weird, and at times incredibly dumb.

Life with Selah Jane is different than it was two years ago home schooling. It's crazier, it's louder.  It's longer. It's more wonderful than any of us could ever imagine. Yo'd have to be here to truly enjoy her, and herself.
Sometimes I try to imagine life without Selah, not in the I wish I never had her way. Just the pondering in a grateful I'm amazed she's here way. I can't. I really don't know how we did life without our baby girl.



Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I Can't Bear to Part With My Debit Card

It's not what you think! I swear.. I know you think I have some sort of spending issue, or that my hubby has taken control and cut me off, never to spend again. Not. Even. Close. 
October 1st marked a new day in Jen Weir's wallet. After ordering my weekly cuppa, I handed the barista my debit and she politely says, " oh ma'am I'm sorry but this card has expired".  ***gasp*** Drat. I knew I meant to do something last night. Activate my new card for one thing, of which I've had for TWO MONTHS, of which has been sitting on my craft table for TWO MONTHS so I didn't lose it. You might be thinking, wow, procrastinate much?? Well, that's sort of the reason. However in this situation it's a little fuzzy as to why I procras, I mean hesitated, on this activity. 
Handing my old friend over to the shredder it hit me. This rectangle piece of plastic has been with me for 4 years. 
It's first year marked our pioneering into the world of homeschooling, so with my trusty friend I bought countless books, paper, pencils, ect. Second year it traveled to Dallas, innumerable times in order to see oncologists and surgeons on behalf of my son. It was swiped through untold Starbucks as we left these offices, in hopes of getting a little happy cuppa for the long drive home. I bought my son a five dollar loaf of bread from Subway because he needed food after a surgery. Yes, $5, just bread, no sandwich. True story. I bought him nasty peanut butter crackers and over priced juice and a shady gas station somewhere in Dallas for the same reason. In case your wondering, don't they feed you at the hospital, um no, not really, not with out patient procedures. 
Cardy was swiped through gas stations as I realized I was about to run out of gas heading home from, well just about everywhere.  Swiped at the parking garage and the parking valet at the other hospital. During that time great vacations were had. It got swiped at zippy marts along route 66, in desolate places driving through New Mexico and Arizona. The gas station in Barstow that smelled like pee because it was 1000 degrees outside and the plumbing wasn't working as one would hope. 
Cardy's third year in my wallet was spent running to dr's appointments to check out my ever growing belly, carrying Selah Jane. It paid for co-pays and more Starbucks trips.

Wait a minute. Stop reading. This is the worst blog I've ever written. 
Talk about a huge yawn of a blog. There is not a human alive that would relate to this. Ok, from here on out, this is my personal journal let's say. If you wish to contnue, know that you do so being fair warned that you will be bored. Carry on. 

 It's just when I looked at that card today, I flashed through every single rough place we'd been the past 4 years. Every great moment in time as well. For some reason, with this season the rough spots are easier to remember. I grieved all over again the phone call that changed my life. The many phone calls I answered holding my breath. The co-pays I resented paying because it was going for another visit to a scary place. I remembered the Starbucks trips that were filled with untold amounts of tears being wiped away trying to hide from the barista because I had just left my baby girl in the NICU, again, and I missed her so bad my heart ached. I could only had him cardy and pray he didn't ask if my evening was going well.  (barista's, too chatty some days for even me) 
Putting my card back in my wallet before I headed into to see baby girl in case I needed something at that blessed hospital. 
The joy of swiping it at Disney World on our make a wish trip. The anger of using at Target last minute as I realized my son need pull on pants because he'd have a huge gaping wound on his leg from a skin graft. The anticipation of buying Selah Jane's coming home outfit, only to be crushed we'd have to wait a few more days. The elation of using it at Trader Joe's for the first time in Texas!! Gah, can I get a hallelujah for that one?? Used all day long on my 40th birthday, blessing folks with some fun treats and the best birthday gift to me, being used to pay for a precious couple's 57th wedding anniversary dinner.
I didn't always have the same purse. I didn't always carry the same wallet. Hell I didn't even have the same phone.  But I did always have the same red card. Over the past 4 years I've had to pay for things that were bitter and things that were sweet. That card caused a flood of memories that really, no picture could ever capture. Everyday, every place I went, I had that silly card with me.  
Memories are funny. I'm not sentimental. I have a box in my closet high up on a shelf that hold a precious treasure that every once in awhile I dare to let myself look in. The memories in there are still fresh and raw, though they are from another painful time in Weir,Tx. I believe my trusty card might just have to be popped in there to be kept for safe keeping. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A little of Possessions and a whole lotta Media chit chat

Ok so, I've been off the grid, under ground, flying under the radar, ( pick your favorite line) for about 2 weeks now and I'm feeling the need to share a bit about 7 and where we're at.
here's a brief  wrap up of possessions. Can I just tell you our God is beyond AMAZING!! I can not even say how the possessions week made me realize He really really really absolutely positively cares about our needs, wants and desires. Going into all the details of what happened that week would require you to transform yourself into the paper whore that I myself am, (yes I have a crafting problem), drool and lust over craft supplies at Hobby Lobby, buy so much craft crap that you have a craft closet STUFFED with stamps, punches, paper, doodads and bobbles and then try to figure out if you are to purge 7 things a day for a week, who'd want your precious collection.
Kids in Uganda that's who.
Straight up I'm not lying about this. In about 3 months, some precious kiddos half way around the world will be stamping and inking their little hearts out.
I need one of those kids.

Onto MEDIA WEEK!!!! 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

7-Clothes wrap up

Currently I'm in a stripey brown shirt WITH a tank top under WITH sock AND slippers and jeans on. All the capitals on account of the fact that I'm done with 7 clothes section, it's cold here in Tx, and I'm grateful to be able to layer. That said here's the wrap up-
As I was sans my slippers and extras last week I fell into a grateful mode that Jen Weir has never had before. So grateful for extras and excess and yet so burdened by those that are not as fortunate as me. I found myself thanking the Lord for the many many many many many many blessings He has showered little Weir,Tx. I found myself grieved that many go without.
I must say the hardest day by far was Easter. Going to church in jeans, pink t-shirt, zip up sweat shirt and running shoes ON EASTER IN NORTH DALLAS was humbling. Turns out I'm sure no one cared what I was wearing. Also, my kids LOVED the fact I was not involved in their clothing choices for Good Friday service and Easter.
You'll noticed Jonah's attire in the pic... That would be his fancies for Good Friday.
My Eden wore her finest as well, a velvet blue sparkly number. God showed me this week that I spend WAY too much time primping up me and the family and ZERO time thinking about Him on Sunday mornings. Ouch.
I have nothing more profound to share with you about what the clothes section has done in my mind and life because you are not me, and I am not you. One thing I have learned these past 3 weeks is my journey is my own. Those around me are on their own journey, and they are learning/growing/changing as they and the Lord see fit.
That said, you may notice me in the same thing for every birthday lunch/dinner function. I may be sporting some hippy looking long skirts, shirts and shoes that look like they were made in Africa. (they will be)  I will likely be shopping more frequenrly at the Thrift Shops rather than the mall....With $20 in my pockets...
If we cross paths on April 16th, please do not be alarmed at the fact myself and my children will be without shoes in order to raise awareness for kids who go without shoes every day. True story. Yes I know it's unsanitary, yes I know I'll look dirty, and yes I know I won't be allowed in some places. Remember paragraph 2? My journey isn't your journey? Carry on good Samaritan.
Today I started the possessions section of 7. As this will be a long tale to tell, I'll end this entry here. As I am never long without things to write about, I have plenty to share on that subject.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

7

Well, it's been about a hundred years since I've written about anything besides my kid having a cancer issue or my baby having her organs put back in or anything else medical related. Soooo  I thought I'd kick off the new season with some fun that's happening in Weir,Tx.
Last summer Marck and I read a thought provoking life altering book. 7. You can Google the book, Jen Hatmaker is the author but basically the author tackles 7 areas of excess in our culture, tries to focus on God, and deals with poverty. Totally just gave you the nutshell version and yes it does not sound interesting from the way I just described it. Trust me, after you read this post, if you hang in til the end, drop everything and go get the book. If you have a soul you'll hate me for telling you about it, her for even having the nerve to write it, but in the end you'll thank us both.
I'm in a bible study group now that is tackling this challenge, although as the author does the experiment for a month, we are doing it for a blessed 7 days. Thank you Jesus! I like my cushy perks of living in the U.S.
Many of my friends have asked, " how'd you do with the food??". I'm sure they are overly interested on account of the fact that I'm vegan now, which by all rights according to our current culture IS a mutiny in itself. So here goes how the food went, and how on day 1 my clothing mutiny is going.
Food- The author recommends picking 7 food items for the week. SEVEN. THAT'S IT!!! Ok, easy peasy, I got this. My goodness I hardly eat much any way right?? True, however I did not take into account I have 5 kids, 4 of which I home school, one I'm nursing and trying the whole solids thing, ( BTW- Selah has the 7 things down, sister keeps hers at a 3, boob, bananas and squash.), plus I cut hair a bunch at home soooo all these factors were less than helpful in eating only 7 things for a week. It really takes a lot of planning and forethought both of which I couldn't muster up the strength to do. By Thursday. evening I was "cheating" and by Friday I took my freedom in Christ and called it quits. Incidentally we started Wednesday. Calling that an epic fail, did not grow close to Jesus, did not feel a sacrifice, did experiment very badly.
Clothes- Going along with the theme you may have guessed we chose 7 items of clothes to wear for a week. No biggie I think, I'm not the clothes horse Marck Weir is. Oh really? hmmm, did I forget to mention it's EASTER WEEK??? Crappity crap. Apparently I like to look at least put together for church, at best look fab and say airy things like, " oh I just grabbed this frock and tossed it on. You know how tough it can be to get 7 people ready for church!". *** all the while hoping they are whispering, " she looks amazing for having 5 kids" as I stroll away***
Ok so back to my choices...
Really tricky. Have I mentioned my hatred for cold weather? And when I say cold I mean 60 or cooler?? It might crack 70 today. Here are my breezily picked choices and then I'll spill the nitty gritty;
1 pair of jeans
1 pair of yoga pants
1 baseball mom t-shirt ( Canon's first ball game is saturday, gotta represent)
1 pink t-shirt
1 long sleeve black shirt
1 zip up sweat shirt
and my running shoes

At first I wasn't going to count pj's or my shoes and least of all my precious slippers. I mean come on, I told you clothes don't have a grip on me... Pardon me ma'am but isn't a fast supposed to pinch? Aren't you trying to get perspective about how the rest of the world is living in squallier and poverty? Ok fine, no slippers. Then I get this dumb text from my dumb friend who gave me the dumb book in the first place. By the way, after reading the first chapter last summer, I texted said friend and told her I hated her for giving me the book. She already knows our friendship is in the balance right now. :-) So the text this morning says this " As I was thinking it over I realized that even jammies is sort of a rich person privilege. I think I might do what she (the author) did and sleep in my t's".  Who needs lofty friends like this anyway?? Where are my shallow friends when I need them?? Then another super spiritual text from another friend, " I'm giving up my beloved house slippers which I wear every waking moment"... wait hold up, she gave up her slippers?? Ok fine for her, but I don't feel God calling me to do that.... Later same friend says, " My cold bare feet this morning led me to pray for the homeless that always feel the elements".
** Jen Weir raises hand at bible study next week to ask " can I move to a more shallow and selfish table please?"**
People all morning these ladies keep going!!
Another " And let's remember to give thanks and praise that we are privileged and we do have slippers and pjs and the option to wear them or not. We need to give thanks for our many blessings. Be humbled by them."
The texting went on all morning. Much laughter ensued on my end because while these precious women were quite grounded in their ideas and thougths, they still struggled like me in their First World-ness.
ie- "Went to the mall to in my gym clothes, didn't want to waste an outfit on a silly errand" HAHA!! Right on sister! Another funny- " Ah man! Already got my jeans dirty! Day1"
ps- same girl is not going to wash her clothes to gain more perspective.

As I have prayed through this study, I do want a perspective shift. I am coming off what I like to call my hurricane. A kid with cancer one year, 2 years later a kid born with her liver on the outside of her body. All of which turned out ok. During that Hurricane season, my faith was FIERCE. Jesus and me were tight. I knew that I knew my strength was in Him and Him alone. Season over, everyone is healthy, life has resumed some what normally, and I'm left in aftermath mode. Cleaning up of my once raw emotions. Dealing with fears rooted so deep from having not one but two kids with health issues. Fears people. I can not feel a twinge in my body or see a mole on another kid and not think it's cancer. Where's your faith Jen Weir??
Friends, I have no idea. My faith is dryer than dry. I love the Lord, pray daily, seek Him and all that. I just feel stuck.
Mad.
A lot scared.
Scared mostly of having to walk something even scarier than I have had to in the past 3 years.
So this fast of 7 means a lot more to me than getting perspective on the third world at large. I know how they live and I do want to help. I will. I'm getting there. But first I need to know my Jesus again. I need to be OK again.I'm praying that fasting this 7 weeks with allow that to happen.

Lest you think I have stayed in my bubble and not felt the pinch, I did take slippers off my list and  I will sleep in my yoga pants and t-shirt. But, I will wash my clothes... daily.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Starbucks has ruined America's values



Ok so maybe it's not altogether Starbucks' fault, being there the whole free will deal.  Our nation has lost it's sense of culture, it's sense of community and it's ability to discuss meaningful topics because of Starbucks, or the advent and crazed popularity of it. Oh I know many of you are screaming at your screen and yelling, We go to S everyday or every week and meet with our bible study, or GNO, or whatever else!!!" Read on. Hear me out. In 1978 the little wonder company flew on the scene, virtually unnoticed by most people south of Oregon.
I grew up with coffee, fresh coffee brewing almost at breakneck speed at every relatives house. Cuppa fudgey it was called. If you dare allow folks to come sans a brewed pot you were given "the look". The one that said " good Lord! What is wrong with you and where is my coffee??" The world's problems were solved over coffee. Ok I know I've written this exact same idea before. But people please it bares repeating! Coffee and the lack of community I believe is ruining our nation.
Fast forward to the age of Starbucks and all the people who grew up with coffee pots in their homes. Like me many did and it was a comfort food of sorts. The smell of it brewing brought in intense wonderful thoughts and feelings like no other aroma. It's no wonder all of us adults who were 18 in 1991 donned a plaid shirt and wandered into this magical world. Wait, hold up... This place offers not just black, or coffee with a little cream or espresso, they offer um, something called flavors?  Odd, but ok let's give it a go. Vanilla infused in my skinny latte? Well that was delightful wasn't it.
So there we were mindlessly ordering shorts, talls, and grandes with a splash of flavor. Wait what's this?? Mochas now? Ohhhh, hot cocoa WITH coffee?? Oh sweet Jesus this is truly straight from heaven. A lovely winter treat if you ask me. May I remind you I lived in Ca during the 90's, and the coldest temp I can bring to mind might be in the 50's. Still, chilly mornings right? Mostly I loved my skinny vanilla number and went about the day. Short please. Round about, oh I don't know 1997 all of a sudden no more shorts listed on the menu but tall, grande and good Lord VENTI! Because everyone needs that much caff in one sitting. Like every other blind melon I ordered my "tall" drink and nary a thought passed my brain.
Now friends comes the advent of Frappucinos, made with whole milk and a mound of whip that could choke the cow it came from. Has anyone ever stopped to look at what these glorious drinks are costing us?? I'm not talk pennies friends, I'm counting up calories.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 24 fl oz
 
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 150
Calories 470
 
% Daily Values*
Total Fat 17g26%
 Saturated Fat 10g50%
Cholesterol 55mg18%
Sodium 280mg12%
Total Carbohydrate 77g26%
 Dietary Fiber 1g4%
 Sugars 77g 
Protein 7g 
 
Vitamin A 10%Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 20%Iron 8%
There it is in bold print. Oh my soul, 470 calories for a beverage??? 17grams of fat, 1/4 that fat a human should consume all day is sucked down in one drink. Never mind if you add a snack to that costing another 100-200 calories. Did anyone notice the cholesterol? And people have the nerve to say high cholesterol can be hereditary. My ass! Put down your high fat, high cholesterol soaked drink and your numbers will plummet I promise!
So I went to dinner with friends three times this month. Twice I tried to order decaf coffee after my meal. Two different restaurants. Both times I waited and waited and waited til I asked for my check and left to make my own after dinner treat at home. By the time I went out third time I decided why frustrate myself and get the coffee goodness at home. I just wanted a cuppa to wash down my meal with friends. I listen, talk, communicate better with coffee in hand. Apparently now it takes a team of specialists to make a pot of decaf. The kicker is, all my friends, pre-meal ordered drinks, alcoholic of sorts and got them in record time, AND were able to order seconds and thirds. Believe me when I say I was happy to leave before any of those people hit the streets after all that consumption of alcohol. Me, all I wanted was a simple cup of coffee. Didn't even need cream.
I was deeply grieved at the way our nation has turned from this time honored tradition of gathering with friends and solving problems over little roasted beans.
We are in a culture where taste is sullied by sweets and fats, not aromas and memories. May I say our tastes have been ruined? Cheapened as it were. I'm grieved that a Sangria holds more appeal that our old friend the cuppa.
I assumed if the establishments offered Fraps, sugar Lattes and the like, you'd be able to get one lickity split!
People used to linger over after dinner coffee for hours in a restaurant. Or better yet, head over to someone's house, throw on a pot, put the kids to bed and talk. Now Starbucks closes by 10, and is not always next to the eatery you are at. Folks head home. Or folks have drank a little too much ahead of time to make much sense by 9 so the sober ones head home, devoid of meaningful chatter and deep thoughts.
In any case, we don't drink regular coffee with cream and sugar, which any person can make. We now consume, in large amounts, the beverages Starbucks only offers, which you have to be a Barista to make.
It's not legalizing gay marriage, abortion or no prayer in school that is ruining America's values my friends. It's Starbucks, and all the other high fat high sugar Coffee Establishments dotted around the country that is ripping away at the fabric of our values.