Wednesday, March 31, 2010


I don't know what exactly is going on with me. I'm NOT pregnant (no really...I'm sure). But I certainly feel pregnant.

We have been busy and I have had a lot on my mind and plate, but even more than that is the fact that I am D...R...A...G...G...I...N...G.

I just can't seem to get going in the morning, even with copious amounts of coffee, and by dinner I'm ready to, take to my bed, eat dinner there and not get up until I absolutely have to in the morning.

Naturally, I don't have that luxury so a lot of days I'm just pushing myself to get to the end. My hunch is that it's my thyroid (I didn't take my meds for awhile....I know, it's terrible) with the addition of allergies, coughing, congestion and my normal life thrown in.

It's a nice little cocktail. You should try it. Oh wait. Josh is screaming "NOOOO!!!!!" over my shoulder. Is this not fun for you, sweetie?

All that to say, my sincerest apologies for not showing up on here. I have stuff I really want to write about, but every time I think about about it, I want to take to the bed again.

So, I'm going to go drink more coffee and hopefully, with my medicine getting back in my system, I'll be rearin' to go in a few more days.

(this might be the most pitiful thing I've ever written)

Thursday, March 25, 2010


I just found out that a sweet, sweet friend at our old church met Jesus today.

His name was Bill. He was, to me, a trash talker, a sore card game loser, hater of peppercorns, gardener I looked up to, hilarious, a loose canon, kind, someone who loved to pick on me any chance he got (which I loved), a highlight of every church function, who always expressed genuine disappointment and then fussed at me when we weren't at something, the man who always greeted me with a kiss on the cheek and a hug, who I always looked forward to seeing, who I never felt weird saying "I love you" to, a sweet husband to an equally fun and likable woman, unafraid of being real and honest about what he was thinking, a fighter.

I haven't seen him in about a year and have immense regret about that right now. His health wasn't great when we left, but we always said we would keep up the trash talking and card playing. We didn't.

Just now, I was crying in the kitchen. Josh came in carrying Manny. While he was hugging me, Isaiah ran up to my legs and said, "Mommy I just want to give you a hug. Mommy, why are you crying?"

I said, "Because one of my friends died today. He's with Jesus now, but I'll miss him."

Isaiah emphatically said, "But Mommy, we can just get in an airplane, and fly reeeeel fast up in the sky. That way the firetruck can't come and give us a ticket because he can't reach us 'cause we'll be way up in the sky, and then we can go see your friend!"

Bill would have laughed at that.....and then somehow find a way to make fun of me for it.

I love you, friend. We'll get that card game before too long. You better keep your "skills" up. :)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Delayed Gratification

Sorry my posts have, absent.

I was dealing with such bad perspective most of last week, I didn't want to spread the Soul Poison that I was apparently wearing in a vile around my neck.

And then, the weekend! It was busy, fun, a very large snake was involved, there were celebrations and then an unexpected surprise I can't wait to tell ya'll about.

(no, not far as I know.)

It was somewhat connected to my very bad, awful attitude.

God went and showed off. I'm humbled.

So, when I catch my breath, I promise to give you every gritty little detail. Stay tuned! :)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Disposals of Providence....updated :)

There are few things that drive me to my knees before God like money.

It is probably the main source of anxiety in my life (and, though easily forgotten, where I have seen God's provision the most).

This past week has been especially worry-filled for me, and I am feeling the weight of my cares this morning.

I was reading Matthew 6, and also clicked to read Matthew Henry's commentary.

And such sweet, unexpected truth and comfort from the Lord jumped off the screen at me, and I just wanted to share some of it with you.

Drink it in, friends. I pray it speaks to you whatever it is....

We must reconcile ourselves to our worldly estate, as we do to our stature.

We cannot alter the disposals of Providence,
therefore we must submit and resign ourselves to them.

Thoughtfulness for our souls is the best cure of thoughtfulness for the world.

Seek first the kingdom of God, and make religion your business:
say not that this is the way to starve;

no, it is the way to be well provided for,
even in this world.

The conclusion of the whole matter is,
that it is the will and command of the Lord Jesus,

that by daily prayers we may get strength to bear us up under our daily troubles,

and to arm us against the temptations that attend them,

and then let none of these things move us.

*Just wanted to include the link to the rest of MH's commentary. It's all just so good.

And, because God loves my little weak, anxious heart (and yours), He reminded me of the lyrics to a song I have on my music player (right side bar). It's by JJ Heller and is called "Your Hands."

It calms me down almost immediately. Maybe I'll keep it on repeat today.

I have unanswered prayers
I have trouble I wish wasn't there
And I have asked a thousand ways
That You would take my pain away
That You would take my pain away

I am trying to understand
How to walk this weary land
Make straight the paths that crookedly lie
Oh Lord, before these feet of mine
Oh Lord, before these feet of mine

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave Your hands

When You walked upon the Earth
You healed the broken, lost, and hurt
I know You hate to see me cry
One day You will set all things right
Yea, one day You will set all things right

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave Your hands

Your hands
Your hands that shape the world
Are holding me, they hold me still
Your hands that shape the world
Are holding me, they hold me still

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave You when...

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave...
I never leave Your hands

Deep breath. Heaven stands.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Welcome to my post of random, insignificant questions

Have you ever made your own yogurt?

(FYI, it's Random-Questions-and-Ramblings-from-Dana day here at the ol' bloggeroo.)

(picture from

I haven't but I'm really interested in trying it.

I just read all about it here and was VERY excited to read about making it in the crock pot here.

I'm on this kick right now of making stuff yourself. Actually, that's always a kick I'm on.

I aspire to DIY everything that is somewhat interesting to me. It's all about the thrill! The bragging rights! The (sometimes) satisfaction! The personalized, cutesy, artsy touches! The savings! The freedom!

(I like me some freedom, now)

For instance, I recently found this site that I have developed a major crush on. Actually, an emotional, needy, high school girl obesession, if you want to know the truth.

(Thank God I have a husband who will come pry my clawed, stuck fingers away from the mouse. I think he just wants to eat.)

(Does anyone remember the one when Chandler played Ms. Pac-Man so long he had the "claw hand"? Just wondering.)

So, my crush's name is Young House Love (no you can't have's mine and I neeeeed it!), and it belongs to a young couple who bought a small house and completely re-did the whole thing themselves. It is so cute and charming, I could pee myself.

Here's a small peek into a guest bathroom they did.

You should see the "before" picture.

The table the sink is on used to be a night stand. ahmygah.

Anyway, this post actually has nothing to do with them. I'm just ga-ga.

Recently, PW's Tasty Kitchen blog featured a post on making your own ingredients. It spoke to me. Now, she apparently live in the Town of Middleonowhere where the nearest grocery store is miles and miles away... so this especially makes sense for her.

But I am trying to tighten up on my grocery budget, and have two small children whom I dearly love, but prefer to take nowhere unless unlimited childcare, snacks, train rides and coffee are this makes sense for me too.

They have instructions for how to make oodles of stuff yourself from baking mixes to sour cream to taco seasonings to brown sugar to...wait for it.... Nutella. (and Kahlua. not that I noticed.)

(I mean, did anyone else know that it was just sugar and molasses?!)

(You did, didn't you?)

So, you dirty, little DIY-ers, here's another question for you:

What do you make yourself (doesn't have to be food-related)
that has completely changed your life forever?

Or has just been really helpful and worth doing again?

And just for fun, I think I'll take a little poll. I've been wanting to do that for awhile now.

It'll be somewhere around here (not sure how to do it yet), so make sure you add your vote!

Can't wait to hear your two cents!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Sweet Progression

Key in the door...
Who is it?!


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Proof of Life

A vase used as decoration at a baby shower we had before
Isaiah was born...

It had branches in it with little baby socks cleverly knotted
into little flower buds.

Oh, the things I didn't know then. :)

My friend Kelly is real smart. This is her series. Read more about it here.

Monday, March 08, 2010

The BM of 2010...Phase 2 aka There's No Turning Back Now

Well, we agonized, compared, changed our minds a bazillion times and then picked a bless-ed paint color.

And I have never been so unsure of anything in all my life.

We ended up with Palisade Blue by Valspar. It was the one swatch I picked up to look at 4 times...not knowing what it was. That was our sign.

And while I do like the change, it's just very blue.

I had wanted to lean in more towards gray but, having a small bedroom, we walked a fine line between calm, soothing respite and The Dark Cave of Despair and Sadness.

ON THE SWATCH, this color seemed to offer some gray but not too much. Then, we bring it home and the gray goes MIA.

Ok, I see a little....but not much.

It was hard picking pictures to post because the color looks so different in different lights.

For instance, when we turn the lights looks blue. When we turn most of the lights and close the looks blue with a smidge of (imaginary) gray.

Anyway, it's on the walls and Josh has thoroughly assured me that there will be no more painting.

(I'm not sure why he feels so strongly about that because I am the picture of pleasantness when painting with two small children under foot.)

See? Pleasant.

Oh! And, I also thought it would be fun to attempt spray painting furniture. Now, don't scoff. I know it doesn't sound like a good idea. And, on my part, it wasn't.

I learned that I have absolutely no forearm or index finger strength whatsoever. I can do about 6 passes across before my finger needs a break. Today, my arm is sore....and it's my strong arm! The one that has lugged around a child for 3 1/2 years now!

But I live with a super hero.

And his superpower is awesomeness.

(this is what he tells me)

(and the proof is in the pudding...which is good because we have a full sized dresser and an armoire to go)

Thank you, dear.

Here's the makeover mascot...

All this blue is making me realize that we are going to need a lot of warmth. So I'm pretty decided on an upholstered, tufted headboard in a warm neutral.

Similar to this, but probably a simple, rectangle shape. I'm really excited about it because my friend is going to help me do it. :)

(But I should tell you, I have no idea when we'll start on it....remember...I am nothing if not a procrastinator. But hopefully it won't be too long.)

I also plan on getting a big framed mirror for one wall, and somehow arranging some of the stuff we had on the walls before.

Thoughts? Revelations? I-told-you-so's?

Friday, March 05, 2010


I just read this post by a girl named Katie. She looks like she's my age, maybe younger.

She lives in Uganda.

She has adopted 14 beautiful, Ugandan girls.

Her words have rocked me to the core.

I have tears in my eyes and many, many questions. The same haunting questions that have roamed around in my heart for years now. They come to the surface often these days.

~How do I do this?

~What does this look like for me, a 30 year old wife and mom of 2?

~Do we move?

~Do we stay?

~What is my day supposed to look like?

~How do I make my "down time" count for the Kingdom?

~Outside of caring for my family, who do I invest in?

~When it feels boring around here, does that mean I'm wasting my life?

~When I feel like our budget is too small to give anymore than we are, does that mean I'm wasting our money?

~What do I do when I feel comfortable and am so scared of what that means?

~Why don't I feel clear in my calling?

~Why have doors closed?

~Do I just want to be able to say I'm doing something radical so people will praise me?

~What's really in my heart?

~Am I really just supposed to love my kids and husband well and write checks to Africa when millions are dying everyday?

~How do I fight this magnetic pull towards wasting it all?

~What do I do when my husband feels called to a profession that keeps us in the US and doesn't pay well, and I want to give more, do more, be more?

~What do I make of these days of being home with my two precious, young boys?

~How do I truly pour myself out for them and live out the gospel in front of them, when so much of caring for them now feels so incredibly mundane?

~I know I'm called to plant the seeds of the gospel in their little hearts, teach them, mold them, shape them into young men that love Jesus more than anything else....but when they're 18 months and 3 1/2 years old, how exactly do you do that?

And there are so many more questions.

And I do know some of the practical answers. But my heart is just crying out for ways I can't really put to words.

Do any of you feel this way?! I would love to pour a cup of coffee and dig into all of this with you....but I would cry. Gosh, I cry just typing this out.

I just want my life to count.

I want to have an open heart for my sweet Savior to fill and use a way that doesn't make sense to this world without Jesus.

I want my life to point to Him.

*and P.S. this kind of thing would normally go into my safe, little journal, but I've run out of pages and haven't gotten a new now you're involved and, so far, I'm ok with that. :)

One of our favorites

This morning, I spent over 20 minutes piecing back together one of the boys' books. It had missing pages, no cover, no bridge and no back anymore....a true sign that it was really enjoyed.

The poor thing had been in a piled heap of bits and pieces on a dusty dresser for months, waiting for someone to show it some love.

Normally, I wouldn't care to take the time to put it all back together. I mean, the boys have plenty of books.

But this book is different.

If you're a Christian mom of young kids, you may have heard of it by now. I just want to add my voice.

It is a treasure.

When my sweet friend gave it to me as a gift for Isaiah, I was really looking forward to watching him enjoy it. I had no idea it would have such an impact on me.

There are very few stories I can read without choking up (and I don't think Josh would mind me telling you that it has the same effect on him). They are just downright worshipful because at the end of every single one, the author points you back to Jesus in a way that ties everything God has ever done together.

The words beautifully draw your heart to see the love of the Father for His children, and His grand purpose to point us to His everything. It continues to transform my perspective... turning all the little individual stories into one great, big, amazing, epic love story....straight from God's heart to us.

Of course, it was God's plan that we see that. It was His masterful design. It's His Word....I just miss it all the time.

Here's an excerpt we read this morning called "A little girl and a poor frail lady" (this just happened to be my favorite bible story as a little girl):

"Just then, Jairus' servent rushed up to Jairus. 'It's too late,' he said breathlessly.
'Your daughter is dead.'

Jesus turned to Jairus. 'It's not too late,' Jesus said.
'Trust me.'

At Jairus' house everyone was crying. But Jesus said,
'I'm going to wake her up.'

Everyone laughed at him because they knew she was dead.

Jesus walked into the little girl's bedroom. And there, lying in the corner,
in the shadows, was the still little figure. Jesus sat on the bed and took her pale hand.

'Honey,' he said, 'it's time to get up.'

And he reached down into death and gently brought the little girl back to life.

The little girl woke up, rubbed her eyes as if she'd just had a good night's sleep
and leapt out of bed.

Jesus threw open the shutters and sunlight flooded the dark room.

'Hungry?' Jesus asked. She nodded.

Jesus called to her family, 'Bring this little girl some breakfast!'

Jesus helped and healed many people, like this. He made blind people see.
He made deaf people hear. He made lame people walk.

Jesus was making the sad things untrue.

He was mending God's broken world."

There is absolutely no perk in this for me, other than knowing some of you may be blessed by this book like our family has been. I even gave it as a gift to a friend who had just become a Believer.

I really can't say enough about it.

I sincerely hope you get your hands on one (whether you have kids or not!).

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


I googled "blue bedroom" and... OH!


I just had to share a few of my favorites to aid in all your deciding about what my bedroom should look like.

Because I'm most committed to helping you help me. :)

You'll need to read the post before this one to get a clear picture.

Here are a few of the things I like about each one.


Color contrast. Love the silver lamps and crisp, white bedding.

Again, dark furniture with cute accessories...likey, likey.

I am absolutely in LOVE with tuffted headboards. Probably not white, but still....

Oooh....the headboard!

Colors, textures, lighting, comfy bed....

More of the same stuff I really like....clean lines, fluffy bedding, contrast, warm, soothing....

*Slight disclaimer-ish: I'm tempted to want ALL of this. But. I'm trying to be careful to remind myself in this whole process that this world is not my home. My treasure is not here. I don't want to toil and labor on that which does not ultimately satisfy....and this stuff won't. What I do want is a calm, soothing, inviting place in our home for just Josh and me So, our plan is to use what God has blessed us with and make the best of it, without spending our non-existent life savings. Think: lots and lots of paint. :)

The BM of 2010... Phase One

If you've been wondering when I would ever update about our bedroom again, I forgot to mention that we're slow movers over here. Sorry.

Life just gets in the way during the week and, honestly, it's hard to get motivated to redo an entire bedroom during our precious weekends when we can barely drag ourselves out of bed to feed the children.

I think we need one of those shows to come ring our doorbell, gasp in complete horror at what they see, watch us blubber about what all our junk means to us, tell us to put our big people underwear on and, for the love, DO SOMETHING.

But before one of ya'll call Neicy to come deal with all our foolishness, I need to tell you that we actually did do something.

Remember this?


Josh and I were talking about our ideas for solving this problem and both of us agreed that we wanted it contained with doors so we could close up the chaos. Then the light bulb went off in Josh's brilliant mind as he remembered that one of the pieces of furniture we inherited when his grandmother passed away was an armoir!

We went and got the thing, and immediately were crushed to see that it was clearly not designed to fit a tv or computer. We could either go buy a different one or break out the Very Manly Power Saws and do it our dang selves.

I think you already know what Josh chose.

Then we had to deal with the issue of getting rid of a rather large dresser that held most of Josh's clothes.

Yeah. I don't like to dust.

I somehow managed to purge my dresser and give Josh two WHOLE drawers. I have never sacrificed so much. I hope he sees that.

I told him that I felt like our marriage just went to a whole new level of intimacy now that we were, for the first time in our marriage, sharing a dresser.

Nothing can stop us now. This is truly what it means to cleave.

And here's the result.

Definitely not finished, but it's a start. We still plan on painting all the furniture. We just didn't want to wait to enjoy the functionality of an armoire.

That sounded a little bit sad, didn't it?

I also plan to find the cutest little chair you ever saw, throw the cutest little pillow you ever saw on it, and put it by the armoire. It'll be the cutest little thing you ever saw. I'm pretty excited about it.

Next dilemma...color. You guys offered really good advice. Thank you.

I took it and decided against red for the walls. We are now opting for a grayish-blue. Something soothing. Sounds simple, right?

I'm starting to twitch a little. Who knew there were that many shades of gray blues?
(and do you spell it "grey" or "gray"??? this is stressing me out)

Here's the inspiration, remember? Not that I want everything to match it. I just want it to all...

(I'm really good at describing exactly what I want in very descriptive terms.)

I think the picture is making some of the paint chips look WAY more blue than they do in person... especially the ones at the bottom.

I won't tell you my favorites yet. I need your brain to be a clean slate. And then I need it to tell me what you think.

And solve all my problems.

My biggest questions right now are:

1) Do I paint all the furniture a dark espresso color?

2) Should I paint the armoire an accent color or something a little more rugged....and if so, what do I do with the handles? I think I want a little splash of something interesting there.

Now, break into groups of 3 or 4, appoint a group leader, and come up with something brilliant.

We'll meet back here in 15.


Tuesday, March 02, 2010

I'm on a horse

Did you think this was as funny as I did?

Love it! Cracks me up every time!