Bloom Where You Are Planted

….regardless of the circumstances of life….


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Happy Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, I have so much to be thankful for….but in being thankful, I am also thinking and praying about those who are struggling.  Those people who have lost loved ones, have health problems, or who are struggling with loss and grief.

On this day, I want people to know that my home is always open.  It will be chaotic and tonight it smells like burnt cheese that dripped on my oven, but it is warm, there will be food, laughter, dog hair, love, and Jesus.  I love cooking and I love it when I am blessed enough to have people come put their feet under my table.  You may step on a lego but hey….it is the life I lead.

God is always with you, in the good time and in the bad time.  There are times when He is hard to see, but if you simply turn around, He is there…waiting with open arms.  He never left your side.  He is always in front of, beside, behind or carrying you and the constant is the fact that He NEVER leaves you or forsakes you.

I pray for peace in our country.  I pray for Little Man’s family an ocean away.  I pray for the birth family of my other two kiddoes.  I pray for direction for my children.  I pray for wisdom, understanding, and discernment.  I acknowledge those seasons that have passed for one reason or another.  I have kept what I learned or gleaned from these relationships and for the negative….I let Jesus wash those away.

The holidays are upon us…another year is passing.  With each passing year, changes occur and the knowledge of Jesus’ return become more real.

If you don’t know Jesus….know that He died for you.  As He took His last breath, on that cross, He did so with YOUR name on His lips.  He forgave you for past, present and future sins.  He is forever with you and you are forever with Him.  You can NEVER lose your salvation once He is truly in your heart.  You don’t need to ask for forgiveness over and over and over.  It would be like nailing Him to the cross every time you sinned.  When you sin, after you ask Jesus in your heart, confess and then ask Him to help you turn away from that particular sin choice and He will…in His time.  He has plans to prosper and not to harm you.  Your path will not always be roses and rainbows, but knowing Jesus and having the peace that surpasses all understanding will help you get through those tough times.  Those times are to refine you and to allow you to look more like Jesus.  Knowledge – knowing there is a God.  Belief – believing there is a God. Surrender – surrendering your life to Him by admitting you are a sinner and by grace you will be saved.

Jesus + Nothing = Everything!!!!!!!!!!


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Stromboli…a New Kind of Way

I have seen this picture floating around facebook and I thought I would tackle it for Bug’s birthday dinner.

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Take 2 cans of crescent rolls (I used name brand and generic and they both did fine).

Keep them in the rectangles instead of pulling them apart and place them evening on your pizza pan or cookie sheet (ungreased). The ends of the rectangle will overlap a bit, so I just pressed them together even more.

I took those REALLY thin slices of lunch meat (I used ham, turkey, and beef) and I would fold each thin slice in half and I layered it on around the inside of the circle, where I had pressed the rectangles together.

It ended up being 2 thin slices all the way around. Next, you add cheese. You can use whatever you like. I had some shredded white smoked cheddar, moon cheese, pepperoni cheddar, provolone and swiss. It was much easier using slices versus shredded…but I used them both.

After you do the cheese, add another layer of a different type of meat (ham, turkey, pepperoni, beef, salami) and you will put that meat over the cheese. The last layer is your second layer of a cheese.

This sounds confusing as I type it, I promise, it wasn’t.

Roll out rectangles (2 tubes of crescent rolls), press together to form a circle.

Layer thin lunch meat

Layer cheese

Layer lunch meat (a different type)

Layer cheese (a different type)

Once that last layer of cheese is on, bring your dough up over your meat/cheese layers and tuck it under. It looks like a giant wreath.

Bake at 375 for about 12-15 minutes.

Delicious!


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Day 25

1.  Vacuum cleaners (for those following, I have caught on fire, 6, since the first of the year)

2.  50-60s music…it makes me happy

3.  The knowledge that God allows or ordains life events….but either way, those things are still filtered through His mighty hands.

4.  Teaspoons

5.  Blue skies on a clear day with a slight breeze overlooking a green pasture dotted with cattle.


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Day 24: She is 19 Today….

Today I am thankful for……my oldest daughter, Bug….She is my 1-5 today.  Beautiful, brilliant, precious, nerdy, odd, quirky, love the Lord, faithful, honest, hardworking, funny….there are not enough words in the English language to describe her.  Oh, how I love her.

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My goodness…where does the time fly?  My precious girl was 9 days late.  I was miserable, huge, and miserable.  My doctor had stripped my membranes, twice….OUCH.  He begged me not to go into labor during the Murray State playoffs because my husband was one of the key players.  He was a long snapper.  I told my doctor that I would do the best I could and he could always induce me :)

It was my first Thanksgiving that I had missed at my Granny’s house and my heart was broken.  My parents, being the good people they are, brought me a plate and I got to sit with them that evening and eat the good foods my granny had prepared.  We talked and I ate.  I wasn’t feeling great, but I had been sick with an upper respiratory illness the days prior.  I went to bed that night and I realized, with Big Daddy snoring next to me that I *really* didn’t feel good.

I knew that if I had started labor that my contractions would not go away when I started to walk, so I walked and I cramped.  I woke Big Daddy and told him I thought I was in labor, so he began to time my contractions.  They were about 5 minutes apart.  I knew it was time.

My doctor…was a fine looking specimen and my legs were hairy.  So, I hopped in the shower before leaving.  Bart thought I had lost my mind, but I had no desire for Dr. Hall to be all up in my stuff when the hair on my legs could’ve been braided.  That is not a good look and it was bad enough that he was even in that area.  Let me just tell you, when you are overdue with your first child, you are miserable, you are sick from a cold, your legs look like a forest had taken up residence…shaving was not a good idea.  I bled all over that shower because I had cut myself so many times.  One stroke up the leg, contraction half way up said leg…cut….scream….it was embarrassing.

I finished bathing, we got to the hospital and I was admitted.  We called my parents and his parents.  My other M.O.M. amazing..she rubbed my feet the entire time.  When it was “time” she got out quickly.  She didn’t want to see all of that.  My mom, would perch next to my bed with a crossword puzzle.  We were doing it together to keep me focused and every time I would have a contraction, I would close my eyes and I would hear her pray.  Not that I didn’t appreciate those prayers, but at one point, I *may* have screamed at her to shut her pie hole because God is the one that allowed Eve to bear pain in childbirth and He wasn’t going to stop it so she needed too.  Oops.  Daddy would just stand there and let me squeeze his hand.

Bart tried to film me, until I opened my eyes and threatened to shove the camera up his butt.  Bless.  I remember at one point, laying on my side (I have high blood pressure and my body didn’t handle labor very well) and I opened my eyes.  When I did, I saw two of my mother in law and two of my husband.  My thought was “oh, Lord….this is too much…”  I had gotten a bit delirious from the rise in my bp.  I was close to stroking out when Dr. Green (he looks like Opie and the sweetest man alive) said they needed to give me shots of Magnesium Sulfate or I was going to die.  I didn’t know what he meant.  I thought he was going to put something in my IV.  Oh, no….he turned me over and got a needle the size of Kansas.  I begged him to wait until my contraction was over and he refused.  He stabbed that thing in my hip and then rolled me over and did the other side.  It felt like hot lava or molasses rolling through my veins.  I got very lightheaded after that.  I puked…a lot :(

We opted for an epidural and a little bitty short fella came in.  The doctors and nurses managed to get me upright and I was told to not move.  I couldn’t understand him because everyone sounded like they were in a well and he was Middle Eastern.  He had a thick accent.  I remember the pain of the needle prick and they kept telling me “soon, you won’t feel anything.”

Liars.

All of them were LIARS.

I felt everything.  The little fella came back in after about an hour and said “you still feel pain?”  I just remember looking at him and saying “come a little closer you *&^(%* and I will show you what I am feeling.”  He tried to give me more and it still didn’t work.  Come to find out (3 babies later) that I am the 1% that epidurals don’t work.  Swell.

After many many hour of labor and 2 hours of pushing….out came my sweet girl.  7 lbs. 14 ozs. of pure preciousness.  I can’t even describe to anyone the feeling I got when I heard her cry and saw her sweet coneheaded little self.  She was loud and scrunchy.  So beautiful.  So perfect.  I was in love.  It wasn’t like the love I have for my husband…it was different.  I thought my heart was going to explode.  Maybe that was because I almost died and it was almost going to explode, but I choose to believe that it was just the overwhelming feeling of thankfulness and joy.

Thank you, Lord for allowing me to be this little girl’s mama.  She is going to make her mark on this world and I’m so proud that I will have a front row seat in seeing what she will do with her life!  You did good when you created her!

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Bug’s Accomplishment

I am SUPER proud.

Here is my oldest daughter’s (will be 19 tomorrow) facebook post:

“So, um, funny story. I was checking my email after work today and noticed one from my intro to business law professor. I read it and see that he wants me to have lunch with him and some judges tomorrow. I didn’t think much of it because I have a class the time of the lunch. So, after class today I ask him more about the lunch. In short, he tells me that I am one of the select few students to have lunch with APPEALS court judges AND the President of the university… That is a huge deal and I did not expect such an honor. All I can say is, wow.”

Here is her follow up post:

“So I have had the most awesome day. Got to listen to my first appellate court hearings on campus, (this doesn’t happen often). I got to hang out with some awesome judges who gave some practical advice. I also was invited to the President of the university’s house and eat an amazing lunch which is a once-in-a-lifetime, super-duper experience.”

Random Facts about Bug:

  • She is awesome
  • She is talented
  • She is brilliant
  • She was 1 of 10 students invited
  • She has been homeschooled most of her life (with the exception of Kindergarten and 8th grade)
  • She graduated 6 months early high school
  • She graduated just a few credits shy of receiving her Associate’s Degree
  • She entered college, as a newly minted 18 year old, as a sophomore
  • Did I mention she was HOMESCHOOLED
  • Just wanted to brag!!!!!!


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Oops in Homeschooling

Today, as the boys and I were reading together, I might have made a bit of a faux pas……I could chalk it up to the fact that I had not had any cheese, broth or caffeine.  Maybe that is a good thought.

So, I didn’t have an “oops in homeschooling,” I had a small lapse due to the insufficient dairy consumption (in the form of parmesan) and I was dehydrated due to the fact that I had not had my morning chicken broth or coke or water.

All that being said…the boys and I were reading.  I have many readers that are 1st-3rd grade.  I bought most of them at yardsales or consignment stores.  When the we read, one boy reads one page, my other son reads a page and I read a page.  So I am flanked by two super cute boys and we are enlightening ourselves on our newest story.  At the end of table, doing his work, is Boo.  You have a visual, right?

We were reading “Harvey’s New Fish.”  This story is about an elementary school aged boy who is jealous because some of his classmates have pets and are allowed to bring them to school for a type of show and tell.  He goes home and asks his mother if he can have a pet and she says no.  In that same afternoon, the boy gets a letter from his uncle, who lives in Japan. The uncle promises to send him a fish, in the mail, from Japan.  Well, the boy was thrilled and he went to class, the next day and announced to his friends that he was getting a fish from Japan.  Days went by and no fish came.  Harvey was sad and the kids began to say that there was no fish coming and that he wasn’t telling the truth.  He got home from school, discouraged, and his mom told him that he had a package in the mail, from his uncle.  Harvey rips open the package to find a kite, in the shape of a fish.  The boy tossed the envelope and was angry.

He went back to school, the next day, with a jar and water in it.  The kids asked him what it was and he told them that it was his “transparent” fish that his uncle had sent him from Japan and that the “transparent” fish ate “transparent” food.  All the kids (and teacher) gathered around and soon, the kids began “seeing” the fish.  The boy was so excited that his friends were excited and his teacher encouraged the students’ to draw a picture of the “transparent” fish from Japan.

The next day….Harvey returns to school, without his transparent fish.  The kids ask where the fish is and Harvey tells them that a cat snuck in his house, found the jar and ate the fish.

Story Over.

There are comprehension questions about the story at the end…I ask the boys the questions to see how their memory recall is and if they could remember details of the story.  The boys sat down, ready to answer the questions.  I closed the book and I looked at the boys and said “well, Harvey is a little liar, isn’t he?”  Boo stops what he is doing and he looks up, in shock.  He said “mama…that wasn’t the point of the story.”  I thought, what the heck is the point.  The boy is a liar.  I asked what the kids thought of the story and they all agreed.  The boy was ungrateful to his mom and uncle.  He lied to his teacher and his fellow students, and frankly, he needed his butt busted.

I took the opportunity to discuss integrity, honor, honesty, trustworthiness, deceitfulness…..my kids know what I expect out of them.  They are still kids, however, and they still make poor choices.  It is my job to guide them, instruct them and discipline them, if necessary.

So, I took an innocent story, out of a 20 year old reader, and I created a lesson on how to be a city on a hill.  Boo still snickered..moreso because he kept thinking the story was real and he wanted to research what a “transparent Japanese fish” looked like.

Bless.

:)

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