Thursday, March 31, 2011


1000 Gifts List continued:

#63: Indian Curry... got a hankering for curry after talking with an old friend that makes it splendidly and the only curry recipe I had was Indian. It is pretty good!

#64: "There was once a little daddy..." stories from Big Sis

#65: Little Man's 'raspberries' he blows when he refuses food...although frustrating it is quite hilarious.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Time is limited. And every moment births a choice. I can't do it all, so I must choose. Quite honestly, I'm just sick of choosing:

Do I take a shower this morning? Do I lay in bed just a minute longer? Which screaming child do I tend to first? Do I dare venture out to the store to get the pantry staples with two kids on the verge of a meltdown? Do I drop reading the story to rush and answer the cell phone? Do I take this moment to quickly start another load of laundry, do the dishes, wipe down the counters, go to the bathroom... which comes first? When both kids are down for their naps, do I take a nap myself or do the finances that are in desperate need of being done? Or do I take a moment to read the Scriptures and pray?

Why can't life just move slowly and without time? I just want to be able to do it all... but I can't. And a mad downpouring of choices abound. I'm left to choose.

Well, I missed my shower and nap today. Instead I choose to read a book called Praying the Scriptures for your Children.

It is a powerful book that uses God's mighty Word to guide and form prayers that hit topics like your child's Faith, Character, Safety, Relationships, and Future right on the nail. I realized as I was reading that I often view my actions with my children as the primary source as to whether they will grow up to be God-fearing, Christ-loving, Faithful Followers of God. And that I don't prioritize prayer where it should be. Prayer is such a mysteriously powerful tool that should not be underestimated. With all of my intentional efforts geared towards my children to bring them up in the Lord (which definitely has it's place), I must not forget the role of prayer. I have been enjoying this book every additional chapter I read and cannot emphasize how meaningful it is. For any who may be reading this blog entry, I have a selfish request... will you lift up a prayer for Zoe, Roman, & Baby Lee? Prayer is powerful.

With children in bed, I'm finally off to getting that shower. :)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

First Steps on The Journey....

Snippity-Do-Da! The baby wisps were just getting to be a little much. I had held off long enough and finally concluded that it was time for Little Man to get his first step into manhood... his first haircut!

It turned out stellar. He looked like one handsome little blonde dude. Part of me was sad to see the untameable baby wisps gone... it was like I was giving up my baby boy and stepping into a new era... of little Tot.

Although the end of baby wisps... new beginnings abound. Little Man took his first step yesterday (Saturday) with many more to follow. His independence begins and my release must accompany that. It is hard and so I pray. I pray for him and Big Sis to Know God, to Walk with Him, and to Accompany others on the journey. Cause we are all on the journey...just at different points.

"Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did." 1 john 2:6 

Lee Baby News...

Take a look at these expressions....These were the reactions that we captured when we informed our parents that they were going to have yet another grandbaby! Baby Lee #3 is on his/her way. Tentative due date is November 8th!

Friday, March 25, 2011

These Days are the Gift....

These days are filled with fun. With flowers on the verge of bloom and birds chirping in the promise of Spring, we truly have so much to be thankful for. Like a gift beckoning to be opened.... I try to do so slowly.... that is my new challenge.

My 1000 gifts list continues:

#56: Big Sis holding the hand of the Easter Bunny (Grandpa Lee) all around town. (As an aside... this week, Grandpa Lee dressed up as the Easter Bunny and went to local businesses with me to try and obtain some donations for our upcoming Neighborhood Easter Egg Hunt... it was a trip!).

#57: Ice cream (Frozen Custard) before lunch :)

#58: The imagination of a child (Dr. Lee)

#59: The ripping open of the window blinds in the morning to unveil the beauty of a sunny day and blue skies!

 #60: A steamy hot dinner... chicken pot pie and mashed potatoes! Ah! Comfort foods!

#61: Happy baby in potato mash...

#62: A puppy soaking up the heat of the afternoon sun

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Cross Eyes....

There are always things that catch our eye throughout the day and sometimes they bring focus and other times distraction. Some are of the doing type, some are of the being type. 

Recently one thing has been catching the eye of Big Sis. It's something that has been there all along, but she is seeing it for the first time. She's noticing and she's becoming more aware. I like to say she's becoming "cross eyed." :)

It started one morning a few days ago when lying in bed with her Daddy. She looked at the door.

"Look daddy, the cross is on the door. The cross that Jesus died on for our sins."

Later that day, she had constructed some blocks to make a cross. She came bounding around the corner so delighted at her creation. 

She has pointed out several other times the crosses she sees around her. She is beginning to live Hebrews 12:2 in a literal sense:

"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:2
I decided to try and take the same challenge that Big Sis was doing. I wanted to try and find crosses that have been around me all along... and fix my eyes on Jesus. These were the crosses I found among many more.

There is something about the cross that transforms us. It is a miracle of incomparable understanding. 

17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Colossians 1:17

This verse brought on so much meaning when I heard it the other day. I learned of a substance called laminin that is the basis for most of our cells and organs. It is the substance that holds them all together... like glue. This substance that holds us together looks like this:

I am continually amazed at the cross that is all around us and in us. Jesus is our source... the source that literally holds us together. Praise God!

17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Colossians 1:17

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Like playdough in my hand....

It's late and the Preacher is not home yet....making a late night trip to Columbus Airport to drop off Grandma Lee after a great visit. 

I'm here doing dishes, finances, baking rolls for tomorrow's lunch, and preparing for Sunday Sabbath so that it can truly be Sabbath "Rest". 

As I try to clear the dough clinging to the side of the bread bowl in the sudsy water, I focus my thoughts reflectively on the day's activities... so much done today with it being Grandma Lee's last day. We met up with an old friend for a tour of the town and got some great photos of Zoe taken in an heirloom dress from 1950 that came from a Great, Great Aunt in Norway.

Dinner at Cici's wrapped up the day and Big Sis and Little Man were tuckered out.

One comment from Big Sis still lingers... she said it mid-day, but I can't get it out of my mind. She looked up at me staring me straight in the eyes and said "Mommy, you need to be careful with me. You need to be careful because you can hurt my feelings."

The words sank deeply into my heart. I am shaping her. I hold so much power in how I interact with her. Like a fragile lump of clay in my hand. But neither she nor her Little Brother are my own. I act like it most days, but they do not belong to me. They are purely a gift from God. I wonder... how am I stewarding these little ones? I recently came across this article titled  "A Child's Ten Commandments for Parents". I was convicted in many areas.

Ten Commandments for Parents:

1. My hands are small; please don’t expect perfection whenever I make my bed, draw a picture or throw a ball. My legs are short; please slow down so that I can keep up with you.

2. My eyes have not seen the world as yours have; please let me explore safely; don’t restrict me unnecessarily.

3. Housework will always be there. I’m only little for such a short time-please take the time to explain things to me about this wonderful world and do so willingly.

4. My feelings are tender; please be sensitive to my needs; don’t nag me all day long. (You wouldn’t want to be nagged for your inquisitiveness). Treat me as you would like to be treated.

5. I am a special gift; please treasure me as my Creator intended you to do, holding me accountable for my actions, giving me guidelines to live by and disciplining me in a loving manner.

6. I need your encouragement, not just your praise to grow. Please go easy on the criticism; you can criticize the things I do without criticizing me.

7. Please give me the freedom to make decisions concerning myself. Permit me to fail, so that I can learn from my own mistakes. Then someday I will be prepared to make the kind of decisions life will require of me.

8. Please don’t do things over for me. Somehow that makes me feel that my efforts didn’t quite measure to your expectations. I know it’s hard, but please don’t try to compare me to my brother or sister.

9. Please don’t be afraid to leave for a weekend together. Kids need a vacation from parents, just as parents need vacations from kids. Besides it’s a great way to show us kids that your marriage is very special.

10. Please set a good example for me to follow in all the ways of life. I enjoy watching the things you do and want to do them just like you do.

Lord, help me to bring Zoe and Roman up in ways that are gracious and Christ-centered. Amen

 Children are a gift from the Lordthey are a reward from him. Psalm 127:3

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Patterns of Life

It is always great to get away and break the routines of daily life; it is healthy. Yet, something within aches to get back to the schedule; the patterns of life; the rhythms that are built in. 

The Preacher and I spent the last few days in D.C. with family. It was a wonderful time. 

 At Army Brother's Base

Preacher Husband at WhiteHouse

Capital Building

We were eager to get back to our Little Leprechauns for while we were away Little Man's Topsy Turvy stage ended him up in the E.R. with a fractured collar bone. 

Big Sis constructed a Leprechaun trap to try and catch a Leprechaun tomorrow. She placed a ladder made of twigs going up to the top of the hat which has gold nuggets awaiting a greedy Leprechaun. The top of the hat has slits cut in it for the little Leprechaun to fall into. She is eagerly awaiting to see if the Leprechaun falls for her trap!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Odds and Ends...

Whew...tired eyes seem to zone as I type this. It has been a crazy past few days. We had Little Man at the doctor's office yesterday for yet another time. This time due to some mysterious lumps on his head. After many tests were run and normal reports came back, the doctor was able to rule out fairly certainly that Little Man does not have any what he called "nasty stuff" (i.e, cancers, etc.) So, we are gratefully thanking God for that news.  Still uncertain what the lumps are from, so we will continue to make the journey back for another check-up. We did find out that Little Man has allergies... not sure to what at this time.

Family is coming into town starting tonight with the snow storm looming. I've been busy running errands and taking care of last minute odds and ends before they get here.  I feel like I've just run a marathon and am just sitting down for the first time in days.

Here were some fun highlights from the last few days:

Zoe says... "Look Mommy, it is the cross that Jesus died on."

Here is the make-shift "green house" that holds our starter plants for our garden. Broccoli is winning with 5 sprouts already coming up!

Little Man loves his tubby time... he's all smiles

We made some fantastic Spinach Balls today. They are a great appetizer and Little Man loved them. Here's the recipe:

Spinach Balls
2 Pkgs. frozen chopped spinach (cooked and drained)
1 large chopped onion (in food processor)
4 beaten eggs
2 Cups Italian style bread crumbs
3/4 C. melted margarine
1/2 C. parmesan cheese
1 Cup Shredded Swiss cheese
1/2 Tsp garlic powder

Cook and drain spinach. Add onion, eggs, and bread crumbs. The m ix in all other ingredients. Refrigerate for two hours.  Shape into 2 inch balls and place on a greased cookie sheet, or use Pam. Heat oven to 350 degrees F for 20-25 minutes. Serve warm.

Dancing with God... Lectio Divina

I need God's Word. Although, I often act as though I don't. I let things crowd my life, my day, my time, and it gets pushed aside: The very bread that gives life... The very water that nourishes the soul. But not today, today I make the time...

Today, I practice Lectio Divina ("Divine Reading"). Today I dance with God.

I open to the reading for the day "Luke 18:9-14". I read it.

I read it again, but this time slower. What words are sticking out to me? What phrases are striking a chord?

"Two Men..."
"The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself:"
"But the tax collector stood at a distance."

Lectio Divina... the act of Divine Reading is not about me reading God's Word. It is about God reading Me.... Letting the words read Me and My Life. How do they speak to where I'm at? How do they teach me today?

I read it again.... Luke 18:9-14
Who am I? Am I the Pharisee or the Tax Collector? 
Today I think I was the Pharisee...
 I see my need for God, but act as though I don't need Him. 
God help me be like the Tax Collector. 
Help me NEED You and Your Word that gives Life. I am unworthy... 
help me not believe the lies of the Deceiver and thus be deceived. 

It is a dance... maybe not pretty at first.  He leads, I follow. He moves, I move. God shows and reveals and I break and bend... I step on toes and it isn't pretty, but slowly... with much practice our dance with become more and more in sync with one another.

Lectio Divina.... "Divine Reading". God, please read me today. Teach me to Dance.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Daddy Daughter Date

Last night was the first of many more to come Daddy Daughter Dates. Daddy and Little Daughter headed out for an evening of just 'being' together. Hand in hand they left the house and started the night with their first stop being Demico's Pizza in North Canton. 

(This is not the actual pizza they ordered, but a pic of what they have to offer. It rocks!)

They ordered two slices of pizza: pepperoni for Little Daugher and green pepper, onion, and pepperoni for Daddy. They enjoyed passing the time by putting a ScoobyDoo puzzle together.

Next they headed out to see Tangled in 3-D at Movies 10.

With a bucket of popcorn in her lap and a  pair of over-sized 3-D glasses on her face... Little Daughter was entranced. The movie was enjoyable minus the constant question and comments that arised (i.e., "Look he has a sword.")

After the movie it was off to McDonald's for a little fun...

They wrapped up the evening with 2 small vanilla cones and headed home after a jammed packed fun filled evening!

It was the greatest Daddy Daughter Date Ever!

A Better Way....

These two pictures only taken moments apart depict a lot about life...

Can anyone figure out what just happened? From what I can remember, the little butterfly in his hand was snatched away from him by Big Sis. Disappointment... heartbreak..."Why would she do this to me?" Thus is life Little Man. Now, don't get me wrong, Big Sis was definitely in the wrong here. But life is life and even as a 10 month old Little Man is learning the hardships of being born in this clay vessel that we call a body, this humanness that is us. We hurt one another and we often treat one another unfairly. Is there hope for us? Is there a better way?
"Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God." Romans 8:12-14

Friday, March 4, 2011

Life in the everyday

It's raining today... gray and overcast.The steady beat of the rain hitting the eaves makes my eyes heavy and my body slowly nod. Husband is doing the ugly task of grocery shopping in this mess of outside. And I'm ironing out some wrinkles in the curtains of the kids' rooms that just received a spring clean.

I read this today and liked it, especially since it is one of those gloomy, gray, wet days...
"Regardless of the mess of your life, if Christ is Lord of your life, than we are the celebrants out dancing in a wild rain of grace — because when it’s all done and finished, all is well, and Christ already said it was finished." - Ann Voskamp

I love it when God does something crazy. About a week ago we lost some important papers that were of high value to us and concluded that they must have made their way out to the curb for trash day. But alas... when all hope is gone, God has a way of redeeming the lost things and helping them to find their way home. 

Big Sis was downstairs rummaging through drawers in an old dresser [why she was doing this still remains a mystery to me]... 

...and she managed to dig down deep enough to unearth the very papers we were missing.

She must have brought them upstairs and laid them on the kitchen counter for that is when I saw them! What was lost is now found! I tried to piece the story of these missing papers finding their way home, but Zoe wasn't saying much, so the open drawer downstairs and a few other clues have led me to this conclusion.

As I was downstairs I was reminded of a few things:

 With all of the scramble that is our lives... signs like these really do come in handy. Isn't it nice sometimes to just have a sign that spells things out for you?

This is my #50 of 1000 gifts from God... EARL GREY TEA. It calms me and rejuvenates me at the same time. 

The seed... 

...we were created to tend the earth. This little hand holds it dearly. To think that inside this dead, hard shell, there is new life. That when placed inside the ground and given the right nurturing, this lifeless speck births new life... the tiny hand holds on to it. She doesn't grasp what is right before her eyes. Goodness, I barely grasp how this happens. But one thing I do know... this metaphor of a seed  just had to be given to us as a way for us to see how God works in our lives. It is unexplainable, yet so real. It is breathing life into the most impossible situations... it is starting something new where life seemed hopeless... it is reviving the dead. 

We created a mini-greenhouse today using plastic photo holders that we'll hang on our window to soak up the sun and heat. Big Sis will hopefully get to witness the very act of God breathing new life into a dead empty shell. I can't wait for the first seedling to appear...stay tuned.