The Shift

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I can feel it. That unmistakable shift of seasons. August winding down, summer days in their most exhausted state, ready for their rest.
I can feel the change in the air. No more is Summers warm breath on the wind.

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I see the change in the sky as well. The haze from summer heat is past, giving way to the deep reflective blue matched by dream clouds that sit so perfectly on the wind.

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I see the change in us as well. In May we are ready to cast all routine and rhythm to the wind. And we enjoy doing so. Now, I feel the welcome pull of things familiar and planned. I think they feel it too. Our summer rest has restored our minds and souls. We are ready to begin the work again.

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Yes, I’m ready. We’re ready. This summer has been marvelous. Not in the spectacular adventure ridden sort of way. But in a more subtle, more present way. This summer was full. Fuller than we have had in a long time. But, we were not over gorged by our days. No, we lived them, every moment. We are satisfied.

Fabric Love


  
 A couple weeks ago I shared how I really was loving this fabric by MonaLuna. Though originally planned for making diapers, the farther along into the project I just kept lamenting the fact that this cute print would rarely see the light of day. Don’t get me wrong, I am adoring the diapers. But even with all the fabric cut and ready to be stitched into more lovely fluff, I couldn’t resist the creative pull and found myself scissors in hand hacking away. There wasn’t enough material left even with scraps to make the little dress I dream of. But, with a little creative stitching I was able to piece together a little skirt. It’s not perfect by any means and sewing knit fabric does seem to have its own learning curve. But, it will do. And I dare say the girl sure seems to like it.

Three

7-18-15 011 (768x1024)First the month arrived. August. “Is it my birthday now?” She would ask. And though the question was repeated often and though it was explained many a time the exact date and how many “sleeps” until the big day. She really did try to be patient. Finally the day arrived.

This girl who can be so particular about many things had no preferences for special meals. And happily gobbled up whatever was put before her. She did want to ride her pony Cisco, which we did. And she wanted a birthday crown “like da brothers.” so we sat down to some making.
She did have some preferences on her cake which I more than willingly deferred to Manna this year. She wanted a pink castle cake. On it she wanted Princess Belle Belle. (No, that is not a typo, that’s how she says it. She has never seen Beauty and the Beast. But a princess who’s name was the same as her old pony is what she liked.) She also wanted Jesse and Woody and Bulls-eye too. Oh! and don’t forget The Hulk! Though I chuckled quite a bit over her cake request, I now realize she was just compiling the perfect metaphor of her personality. And I do say that in the most loving way.
This daughter of mine is a passionate one. She is strong and persistent. She is determined and lives full of feeling. But she is also very tender and compassionate. She loves with her whole heart always.

And now she is three. Farther from her days as a baby and closer to being who she is made to be.
I love this girl with so much of my heart. I learn so much from and through her. I hope to be more like her in many ways.
Happy Birthday love. I pray many blessings on you today and in the days to come.

Summer Savorings



  
  
  

  
This week I’m savoring:

:: Laundry on the line – The breath and peace I get here is so precious.

:: The pony – watching, loving, learning, all of us with this little bay and white boy. He is joy and challenge and my childhood dream lived wholly in real life with my children.

:: Fabric – specifically this print by MonaLuna, called “Evening,” I think. Why I cut it all into diapers I’ll never know, but still a lovely knit to fulfill my desire to create. 

:: Blue berries – by the handful, by the mouthful, with whip cream, in pancakes and even in pie. Yes, I am loving this blueberry season. 

:: Little Girl Shoes – With dazzling eyes that shine so, one must match the other end with just as dazzling footwear. Especially while mucking stalls. 

:: Mud puddles – and all the joy they bring.

:: The Pony – Really, truly a most wonderful gift of childhood

:: Time in the garden – Such a thorn sometimes for the lack of time to be here. But, I’m making the effort and now loving every minute. Another part of my day that gives the body work and the mind rest.

:: Sunsets – with clouds or without. Those last moments when the barn is trimmed in gold.  Another moment to breathe, another moment to savor. 

I would love to hear how you are finding ways to savor the season. 

Savoring Summer


  
  
  
  

Things I’m savoring this summer:

:: Children playing all the live long day.
:: Hanging and retrieving laundry on the cloths line – truly my most peaceful and contemplative moments of the day.
:: Pony rides and skill building, and relationship bonding with said pony.
:: The garden – grass fed as it may be.
:: Cool showers at the end of a hot day.
:: 470 bales of hay, and all the hands that put it up.
:: Open windows and cool breezes.
:: Turkey’s – we see this family almost daily.
:: Sunsets
:: Lightning bugs – and the children who capture them
:: Swimming with friends old and new.
:: Wild stories from the kids whenever they return from anywhere. Even if I’m not with them I am so happy they are having a fun memorable summer.
:: Father and son’s grilling sessions – yes that means less work for me.
:: Sweet corn
:: Blue berries
:: Cherries
:: Ruddy dirt streaked faces around the dinner table… At least they washed their hands.

Yes there is so much to be thankful for in the midst of all that is our day to day. And even though much of the summer is chaos, and I am near the point that I crave more structure. During this free for all, this time of constant upheaval, I am choosing to look for moments to savor.

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Camel Colored Answers to Prayer

 Isn’t she pretty!

Well, I think she is the most beautiful truck in the whole world, let me share why.

Really I could go back about 5 years. When we as a matter of circumstance and practicality decided to become a single vehicle family. And for all intents and purposes I still hold that it was a great decision.

Downsizing to one vehicle did bless our family. It saved us a significant amount of money, it gave us more home time and it aided in the process of our goal to get out of debt. It also gave me a convenient excuse to not get over booked and thus our life had this beautiful boundary and easy way for me to say “no” (something I truly struggle with.) For years it was good.

But, there did come a day when this blessed decision became…less of a blessing, and more of a hardship. In the last year or two our life has gone through some changes. Natural and expected changes of course. The same has happened to those around us. While it was usually something we could work out, there was a fair amount of time when I did need to borrow a vehicle from either my in-laws or my parents to make certain appointments (something that I will be forever grateful for.) Making arrangements to borrow vehicles very often has a tendency to make everyone’s life a bit more complicated. Of course God has been very good to us. We have always made the appointments, gotten the shopping done, even been able to do a few fun things. But, I would be lying if I didn’t say it wasn’t hard at times and often much less than convenient.
It had gotten even more difficult when out of want and necessity I began working a bit. Of course we were working it out, and the nature of my job as a riding instructor is very flexible. But, it was wearing on us. I found myself working a lot of evenings and leaving the kids home with Kyle after he had worked a long day.

One evening on my way home, after talking to my husband who was exhausted from his own crazy work week and had been dealing with a screaming baby for hours. For the third evening in a row. I had come to the end of my rope. I was seriously thinking that I just needed to give up giving riding lessons. Something I love and have come to depend on to recharge my batteries.

“Ugh! We just need another car!”

And that’s when it happened. That epiphany moment, when it was like God said, “Well, why don’t you ask for one?”

Seriously, why didn’t I think of that? Because, well, I pray a lot. Really I do. But, call me simple, the thought never really occurred to me to pray about getting another car. I mean really pray about it.

So, I did. Right there in my minivan driving home to my burned out husband and screaming baby.

“Lord, You know our every need. But, Father…If it be your will…could we have another vehicle? You know our financial situation. You know buying one is not an option. But God, I know you can provide the finances for us to get something if its your will.”

And again, it was like God said, “You need to be more specific.”

So… “Okay God. Kyle really needs a truck. Nothing fancy, but something that could get him back and forth to work and something that could haul grain or a few bales of shavings or hay. Thank you for providing for us. Amen.” End of prayer.

I did tell one friend about my prayer. And she encouraged me to believe, really believe that God would provide this vehicle.

So, I did. And for the next month or so I would pray and trust that someday, somehow God would provide a way for us to have a second vehicle. In the meantime I would adjust my schedule and we would just tough it out.

And that was that. Until one day…

I was giving a riding lesson, and the father of one of my students told me he had a surprise for my husband. It turns out a buddy of his had gotten a new truck and was looking for someone to GIVE his old truck too. It needed a little work, but it would WORK!

I was awestruck. These people had no knowledge of my prayer. They knew we were a one vehicle family. They probably even saw the struggle for us to work out schedules and such. But they had no idea, especially this stranger (who I have no doubt had an ear tuned into Gods promptings) of our real need nor of my request to God. Of course I started crying on the spot. And before I knew it we had two working vehicles. And it has been such a blessing. I have a little more freedom to make plans during the day and Kyle has reliable transportation (really, it does a great job getting him back and forth to work.)

When I said that prayer was I thinking 1988 Toyota? No, not a bit. But it does exactly what I had prayed for. It get’s Kyle back and forth to work (the gas mileage is pretty great.) and he can haul a few bags of shaving or a bale of hay when needed.

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer,
believe that you have received it,
and it will be yours.

Mark 11:24

“Thank you God for answering my prayer. May this post Glorify You and encourage another.”