Home and Family

Count your blessings!

The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.                                                                            Psalms 145:9

Most of the time I try write something in my blog that might be helpful to someone else.  Today I am writing just for me.  We have just over two weeks to the wedding of my youngest (and are three days away from the bridal shower).   Life has decided to see how much I am prepared to accept and keep moving.  Last Saturday night, I got sick; still working on getting on top of it.  (Not kinda off, not feeling icky, SICK.  Can’t hold food down.  Dizzy.  Sinuses won’t stop running.  Sleep eludes me.)  The bride has found herself without a job.  My husband was gone for two weeks  and got home just in time for me to get sick (see above).  The twins are teething…again.  We are dealing with record heat (along with everyone else).   Our wedding photographer isn’t working out causing a major scramble to find a new one.  The budget is becoming a challenge.  I STILL don’t know where Uncle David is!   And the list goes on.

As we raised our family, when life got tough we would buckle down and focus on the blessings we have.  We would make lists of why we love the people in our life.  We would post a sheet of butcher block paper on our wall and fill it with every tiny good thing we noticed.  We would each take a turn saying something positive before our nightly family prayer.  Today I am going to make a list…blog-style.  The following is my most recent “tender mercies” list:

  • My husband has a job.  And he is back in the state!
  • The entire family has a vehicle that is dependable and we don’t have to worry about getting everyone where we need to be in the next little while.
  • My entire family will be able to join us in the temple as we celebrate the marriage of my youngest to a wonderful young woman.  I am so grateful for a posterity who love the Lord!
  • Even though she was raised by her grandparents (who are now gone), the bride’s aunt has stepped in to help defray some of the costs of the big day- not the least of which the perfect dress.
  • We have a family friend (a professional photographer) who will take pictures for us at a discount because she is just cool that way!
  • We have friends from our old neighborhood who have tablecloths they will loan us that are just the right color.
  • Rain is in the forecast.
  • My daughters are in the middle of the fray with me.
  • Pinterest is a life-saver in the form of ideas and last-minute communicating.  We can get online with our helpers, show them what we want, and never have to find a large chunk of time to spend planning in the same room.
  • I got a message from an old family friend last night asking what she can do to help.  Thank heaven for wonderful people!
  • All three young ones are learning to talk.
  • We have found the final decorations and serving items for a discount or on clearance.
  • The twins are learning to give each other “high-fives” and it is one of the cutest things EVER!
  • People I haven’t seen in quite a while have been helping me find addresses for those I haven’t seen in even longer.  The only person that really matters to me that I still can’t find is my Uncle David.  Time to make more phone calls.
  • The garden is producing in spite of the craziness in the house.  Rain from heaven has kept it alive when I have been too busy to water.
  • A cool front is coming in this week.
  • Garden corn is just starting to come on.  I may live on that for the next week.
  • The bride-to-be announced that “the marriage is more important than the wedding”.   She gets it so I can stop fretting the decorations and everything else and focus on healing and shower preparations.   YEAH!
  • We have friends in our new neighborhood willing to help with cleaning, decoration, tying the quilt, baking, and anything else we need to do.
  • My head is finally clearing, and I expect to be just fine for the shower.
  • The older boys are really taking off with their academics!
  • We bottled 250 pounds of apples last year in the form of applesauce.  It is actually staying down!
  • Ultimately the Lord in charge, and my life couldn’t be in better hands!

What “tender mercies” are you seeing in your life this week?

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Home and Family

Let’s hear it for strong women!

My youngest son is getting married in a few weeks.  The last of the weddings for this generation of my family.  We are in the midst of a flurry of wedding plans, reception decorations, and missing-address-hunting!  (Where IS Uncle David?)  We are still trying to find the right tablecloths, and a shirt for the groom to wear with his kilt.  The quilt is underway, but incomplete.  And we still have flowers and the cake to finalize.  (The bride’s parents aren’t in the picture, so we’re helping with most of the planning and arrangements.  Kinda fun; really crazy!)

Meanwhile, life goes on.  Academics, gardening, child-care, teething, and everyone still wants to eat three times a day.  My husband has been out-of-town for training.  Our older son and his wife are away for Air Force schooling, and are trying to find a way to get here for the big day.  My sons-in-law are working on their medical practicum/ master’s degree paper respectively.  It’s okay though.  We can do this!  There are five strong women working to make it all happen.  While our men go out and work at slaying the dragons and providing for their families, we are on the job.  Last week the grandsons did more worksheets and games for academics while the women created shower invitations and got them ready to mail.  Library day is being shared with trips to the fabric/craft store.  And the to-do list is beginning to shorten.

This would be so much more difficult if my future daughter-in-law was timid.  She’s not.  At all.  Decisions are made quickly and then we move on to whatever is next on the list.  The perfect dress was the ONLY one she liked.  Their cake will be a combination of a few different elements from various cakes out there (and will suit the two of them perfectly).  There has been a lot of “yes!” or “no way!” around our house as we explore pinterest, books, and ads.  (My daughters and I have done this before and are kinda the “steering committee” so that all the bases get covered.)  We cook, clean, and talk all the while; lots of final decisions have been made while stirring the pasta or chasing the twins.  Multi-tasking is a gift which is saving our sanity right now!  And will allow us to have joy on the big day!

While we are to be meek, obedient, and humble, no where in scripture does it instruct us to be weak, mousy, or inept.  It is really very difficult to accomplish anything of importance in this life if we are busy feeling as though we should be second-guessing ourselves and doubting our abilities.  The titles “Daughter of God” and “second-class citizen” do not work well together.  Nor should they.  I know where I need work, but I also recognize the gifts and talents I am responsible to develop.  So are my girls.  Bring it on.

In the next three weeks we will finish the flowers, make 30 loaves of bread for the reception, and keep the garden from dying.  The lawn will get mowed.  Meals will be prepared.  Decisions will continue to be made, goals will be accomplished, prayers of gratitude will be said, and I will find time for a nap.