Wednesday, July 29, 2015

First day of school

Our big girl is starting middle school!
Today is her first day at a year-round charter school.

She "won the lottery" and got a place in the school at the last minute, but that means she didnt have time to be nervous - only excited!

This is goign to be quite an adjustment for us all. The younger kids will really miss her when she is at school. Up until now, she's been with them pretty much every day of their lives! But I know that this is the best decision for us right now. I am glad that she will be able to grow, mature, make new friends, and become more responsible and independent. I am confident that with God's help, it will all work out just fine. We even have a friend to help out with carpooling! Now I'm off to look at some lunchbox ideas for Ms. Picky Eater.

Friday, July 24, 2015


It's been two months since baby girl left.

We miss her.

Some days it's just a slight, dull ache behind most things we do.
I feel her missing presence, but don't voice it.

Other days, I want to wallow in self-pity and sadness. Lock the door and cry until I feel better. Call out to the Comforter of All to take away the missing piece of my heart and fill it up with something better instead.

Yesterday we were having a lunch-playdate with friends. There were a dozen kids running around. The host-mom has a one-year-old, too. As I watched the baby toddle across the floor and hold out those chubby little hands for Momma, my heart was ripped open again with longing and missing my baby girl. I was among friends. I should have been able to talk about what was going through my head and heart. But I didn't want to put voice to my thoughts and feelings. I didn't want to be so raw and vulnerable and depressing. I didn't want to drag someone else down with me.

But you know what? After I got home, I realized: I should have said it. "I miss her."
That wouldn't have been so hard, would it? 

So, next time you see me, ask about baby girl.
It makes me happy that other people remember her and think of her too.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015


When I went away on a women's retreat in April, I came to a decision:
I realized that God wanted me to join the choir and start singing at church again.

This was something I grew up doing. I love to sing. As a middle-schooler, I was the youngest person on my church's worship team (by far). In college, I made some great friends at chorus class. However, after we got married, and when I had babies and toddlers, it was impossible to go to late-night practices, which were usually at the kids bedtimes. It was also really difficult to find a reliable, affordable babysitter, especially when only for only an hour or two on a weeknight.

The other obstacle was that my MOPS group meets at the same time as choir practices. I knew I couldn't do both. And I wanted to be obedient. So, after some prayer and introspection, in May, I quit MOPS.

Now, my kids are finally at an age where they are fairly independent and self-sufficient, so if I bring them along and make them sit at church with me for an hour, they can handle it.

So I thought...

We'd already been at church for 12 hours yesterday, for an unrelated event. So they were tired. Really tired. Not only that, but we'd gotten up extra-early that morning, and spent the previous day traveling. This combination would make any four-year-old a little out of sorts. So my little guy was really acting up.

However, I got to sing with the worship team. On the stage. With my own microphone! At the beginning of practice, we did an a-capella version of "Amazing Grace", while they checked our mics and fine-tuned the acoustics with the church's new sound system. It sounded great!

The last time I tried to join a worship team, I did an audition with the lead singer, and he told me I couldn't sing with them. He said I wasn't good enough, my voice wasn't strong enough, and I wasn't what he was looking for. I was pretty crushed. This group enthusiastically welcomed me with no reservations. What a huge difference. I also like how in the group, they take turns leading, and they genuinely work together as a team.

When I got home, I was on a spiritual/emotional high. I was doing what God wanted me to do, and I was loving it! It took me awhile to fall asleep last night. I was just so excited, and confident that this is what I should be doing.

This morning I got a message about a possible foster placement. If I have 5 kids with me on Sunday morning, I have NO IDEA how I am going to manage singing on stage with 5 little people running up and down the aisles. But you know what? I'm going to let God take care of it. If He wants me to sing, He will help me find a way to make it happen.