...even when it's a good change.
I couldn't list all the negative things about living in our house in Tarrant. It was a dangerous neighborhood. The driveway was too steep. We couldn't walk to check the mail. We couldn't walk anywhere. The front steps had fallen off the house. The main shower leaked into the downstairs laundry room. The floor around the main toilet was sinking into the laundry room. Speaking of the laundry room, the washer overflowed about every other month, creating a miniature Nile River through the room toward the basement. The garage door spring was broken, meaning I had to enter and exit through the kitchen sliding door, whose lock was broken and had to be "locked" with a bar from the inside only. I could go on. Literally. There's a whole lot more. But I'm sure you get the picture, and I don't want to bore you.
What a cold, windy day! Our school was split into 3 groups, and there were also several other groups, and we all started at a different station and spent 15 or so minutes learning something about the Civil War before moving on to the next station. At some point, someone got backed up so each group had to wait a little bit before the group ahead of them finished. We still had 4 stations to go when all the groups decided they'd had enough and everyone left. Since we drove separately, we were able to visit one more station before the re-enactors packed up.
The only station I got pictures and videos of was this one, shooting the rifles. The guns were laid out on the ground in two rows, and the kids lined up behind them. Then the leader instructed them on how to pick up and hold the gun.
November 9, 1991
March 2, 1994
May 31, 2002
June 11, 2005
May 9, 2006
These five dates stand out in my mind as mountain tops. The day I got saved. The day we landed in Japan the second time, kicking off a wonderful childhood. The day I finally graduated from something. My wedding. The birth of my son. Each one of these dates is etched in stone, with flowers and rainbows and unicorns surrounding them. They are surely days to rejoice, both back when they happened, and even now in remembrance.
June 2, 1999
Despite it being my sister's birthday, that date is unofficially the worst day of my life. That was not a good day, and I do not rejoice in it, neither back then, nor now when I remember it. How could I rejoice in it? That day signifies a ripping apart of my happy childhood, a jolting recognition of what life outside the bubble looks like.
But how can I NOT rejoice in it? Because of that day, Ps. 118:14 is so much more real to me. I could have survived that day only with the Lord's strength. He was the only song I could utter. and He proved Himself as my salvation over and over--both from death, and from myself.
Now, when I think about June 2, 1999, I still consider it the worst day of my life. It will never rank with those five awesome days of my life. But I can move it out of its "I hate this day" box and put it with July 2, 2006. That box is for days where something bad happened, but I see where God had His hand over me. He has good that can come from it, if only I'll let go of whatever negative feelings I have and allow Him to let rivers flow where once there was only desert.
Rejoice in the Lord. Thank Him...
I am painfully aware that the internet doesn't need anymore "jar gift" blog posts. When I decided last Christmas that I wanted to make jar gifts for some friends, I browsed pinterest and google and was overwhelmed by the number of articles and posts about it. Many of them were simply links to the same three or four blogs, perpetuating the endless maze of "who did it first."
And on that note, here is my post about my jar ideas (slightly different from anyone else's). First up, chocolate. Specifically, candy cane chocolate.
I am not a fan of modern, normal history learning. These textbooks teach what they deem most important, and they totally disregard any sense of timeline. I hated history growing up because everything just hung on nails in random spots in my brain, disconnected from everything else. It wasn't until I got into researching my genealogy that I finally saw history as one continuous story, with a beginning (Creation), middle (absolutely everything else), and end (as of yet to be determined, or "the present", whichever you'd prefer). When I saw that, I could hang all that useless info where it belonged. I determined to teach my kid history in order. It really makes sense that way!
This is part three. Part two is about different mediums you can use in your journaling, and if you don't even know what journaling IS (or you're not convinced it's something you want to get involved with), here is part one: the introduction.
There are so many things and places you can find inspiration for journaling, it might just seem a bit overwhelming! Too many ideas and not enough ... something! I hope this post will help you decide what to journal next--whether you are looking for the perfect "first entry" or you've already done a hundred and just need a new idea.
The following pictures are from my Bible. Most of the entries are finished, but some (like the very first one!) still need some journaling. I have learned not to rush things--when the time is right, God will tell me exactly what I need to put there. Maybe I will learn something from a different method, at a later time, so I want to leave space for future growth.
1. Daily Bible reading
EJ is a planner. He likes to know what's going to happen, when. When his day doesn't go as planned, he's pretty good at rolling with the punches. That's one reason I was struck so hard one day when I went into his room and actually noticed his walls. (The drawing is the shape of the animals' bowls.)
You should totally read part 1 first. It answers the the 5 W (and 1 H) questions. This post will talk about different mediums you can (and should!) try in your Bible/notebook. I will show you pictures of the ones I have tried, but there are more things that I just don't have that you might want to try. (Youtube is great for this!) Every picture in this post is clickable to view it larger, in case you want to see details up close and personal.
1. Colored pencils. Definitely the easiest, and probably cheapest, supply to get. There are a million different kinds of colored pencils, and everyone has their favorite. Mine are an off-brand from the '90s that my husband found in a box of his old high school stuff.
I love my ladies' meetings. The food (especially the dessert!). The fellowship. The projects. I also love God. I love to read the Bible, especially the book of Psalms. I love to sign songs to Jesus, and even to play the piano for our Spanish ministry. My heart smiles when I see my son living out his faith.
Despite all that, however, I don't love the devotional time during ladies meetings. I am probably the only "good Christian" in the world like that, but sadly, it's true. When the chosen lady stands behind the podium and arranges her papers, inwardly I sigh and tentatively reach toward my "Topics to Daydream About" book in my mind, just in case the devotional is boring.
It is so crazy that I do that, still, because after close to 30 months of devotionals at ladies' meetings, only one was boring. One! (Sorry, whoever it was. I have forgotten. Hey, you want me to be honest, right? I didn't say I didn't learn anything from it...) You would think I would anticipate the devotional time and be excited to see what I will learn this time. I guess that old sinful self likes to forget (on purpose?) what a special time being in the Bible is, and every month I fall for it.
Well, this past month (like, last year, since this post sat in my drafts for WAY too long) was so not boring. It was just for me. Literally. Normally we have about 40 ladies in attendance, but for some strange reason, there were only 12 or 15 there this time. So I know that this devotional was just for me.
I could go on and on about the movie "Inside Out." So many feels, as the millennials say. Suffice it to say I loved it SO much that I decided to create my very first lapbook to go along with it! This took SO much work, no wonder people sell them for five bucks each! I made a full color version, then realized that I prefer black and white to print on colored paper. So I made a second version and turned all the color white. I made the whole thing in Paint, so it is not nearly as sophisticated and awe-inspiring as some of the lapbooks out there. But, it is my first one. I would LOVE feedback, and even pictures if you/your kids make it!
I didn't make a cover sheet or any extra pictures to just cut out and glue in. For EJ's cover sheet, I'm just going to have him draw a scene, some characters, or a fancy title. If there's space in his lapbook, he can draw some more. That way I sneak a little art in there, too!
Who am I, you ask?
In 2006 I had a stroke, and every day my husband encourages me to use my remaining brain cells to the best of my ability. I love to organize, make crafts, and go on adventures (safe ones). I hope that through my blog posts, you will be encouraged to accept and make the best of challenges God throws at your life.