Friday, February 24, 2012

The Best Laid Plans

The last couple of weeks have been interesting. I've neglected my computer
in attempts to declutter my home and begin preparing for baby number three
to arrive. It might be a bit early yet, but better now than scrambling the week 
before he's due. It's been a challenge considering now I'm a bit anemic 
(taking iron now) and am feeling it. I've been doing a bit everyday, rendering
me completely exhausted by the late afternoon. 

In addition to my new found compulsion to get the house in order, I've also 
been extremely pensive, analyzing my heart and perspectives on life. I like
to plan. I consider multiple possibilities about a certain something, dissect the
pros and cons, decide on the best course of action (according to my brain), 
and make plans accordingly. Good luck changing my mind after I've been 
through this process. However, I've learned a difficult lesson this last month
which has caused me to reassess how I go about making decisions. 

My kids have been attending a wonderful private preschool attached to a 
local church, which also has an excellent elementary and middle school. 
My mom-in-law teaches at another nearby private school which enrolls 
2 year olds through middle school. It's much smaller, newer (only been 
in existence for five years), and Jason (my other half) wanted me to check
it out. Why would I? I thought. The kids' current school is well established,
(my mother went there as a child) nationally recognized blue ribbon, of course
accredited, and had plenty of extracurricular sports. Their school was everything
I wanted. My daughter has sweet little friends there. I saw no need to change.

My husband wouldn't let it go, no matter how many times I expressed my 
opinion. I reluctantly agreed for my daughter to go visit the 4/5 year old 
class at my mom-in-law's school. On the fateful day I showed up about mid 
morning to observe my daughter during the visit. They were cleaning up 
before going outside for recess and then to art class. I had an hour with 
the class teacher and discussed her methods of teaching, curriculum, 
approaches to discipline, and her thoughts on my daughter. She completely
blew me away. I loved everything she said and appreciated her spot on 
assessment of my daughter. We finished with a tour of the facilities, which 
were excellent, especially considering the young age of the school. 

I knew right away, deep down, that this was the perfect setting for my daughter. 
That "knowing" was God. He was gently showing me His plan for my
children. I was teary eyed upon the realization. I had been so sure of the 
right direction for my children. Of course I had prayed that the Lord show me
what to do, but I was positive He agreed with me. I was so sure that I had
already registered my daughter for next year at her current school. With the
registration fee nonrefundable I knew instantly I was out a few hundred 
dollars. It caused a nauseous feeling in the pit of my stomach. What's worse,
after finally having a release from Jason to register her for next year at her
current school a couple weeks earlier, on the way to do so, I had a funny 
feeling that maybe I shouldn't, what we Christians call a "check" in our
spirit. A small voice whispering direction. I had dismissed the feeling. I knew
better! Lesson learned the hard way.

Both my children are now enrolled for next year at the new school. Although
it saddens me to not be returning to their current school next year, I'm 
at peace knowing we're following God. Our plans may seem perfectly 
logical and correct, but God always knows better. I trust my family's future
in His hands much better than in my own. God sees everything, past, present,
future. He knows everything and has our best interests at heart. 

As aftermath from this learning experience, I have naturally questioned other
areas of my life, hence the incredibly pensive last couple weeks. Am I truly
seeking God in all I do? Or am I planning my life and casually running my
plans by the Lord for His check mark of approval without really asking what
His plans are? I have begun to ask the Lord for wisdom in all that I do. I want
His best for me and my family.

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and
not for evil, to give your a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11, English Standard

Friday, February 3, 2012

Want a New Distressed Look for your Home? No Problem!

Love that trendy distressed look they have for wood furniture and floors?
Want the look without the price tag? I have just the answer. Within my 
family there is one who will pound, hammer, scrap your wood furniture 
or floors providing that much desired "rustic" look and the feel you've been
searching for. True he only is about 37 inches tall and 30 pounds, but 
don't let his size deceive you. He can pack a punch harder than those
two or three times his size. 

His preferred tools are toy train engines. The tiny wheels leave the perfect 
size indentations for a store bought distressed look. If trains are not available, 
his second favorite tool is a toy wooden hammer. "Isn't that what it's made 
for?" will be the look he'll give you. The one I speak of is quite resourceful,
so if trains and toy hammers are out of reach, he'll gladly use anything lying
around, a coaster, small ottoman, remote control, and the list goes on. 

Did I mention his pricing is more than competitive? As payment for this fresh, 
new distressed look, he requires only a snack of gold fish and juice and 
possibly a diaper change, depending on how extensive the job is. His 
immediate supervisor may wish to accompany him on a job site. She's a
bit taller and will also require gold fish and juice as she directs his efforts.
Of course, the big boss herself (yours truly) will come along to make sure
the working conditions are satisfactory and the workers are being treated
well. FYI - the big boss likes dark chocolate. 

So for the price of a half a bag of gold fish, 16 ounces of juice, and a dark
chocolate candy bar, you too can have a refreshing new look on your 
current wood floors and furniture!