When is an Update not an Update?

When you have nothing to tell…

Today I was folding 12 loads of laundry at the laundromat — a task that left a lot of time for thinking, especially since the two TVs were playing dueling soap operas. Turning to the load of hot-from-the-dryer darks, I picked up one of my husband’s work shirts.

He won’t need these anymore,” I thought as I pressed out the wrinkles with my hands.

The semester is over, the students have moved out, and this week will be focused on shutting down the cafe for the summer. Looming in front of us is the arbitrary date we’ve set for our transition back to the Pacific Northwest.

The first week in July is launch time. We’re at T-minus 57 days, and counting, till we head north on Interstate 5 over the Grapevine and through the Siskiyous.

Everyone’s curious about what the future holds. Everyone, including us.

What will we be doing?

Where will be living?

What church will we be attending?

The answer is the same: God only knows. I don’t say that sarcastically, bitterly or flippantly. It’s the truth of our current situation.

Our peace regarding this move is unwavering, despite the fact that God hasn’t revealed to us much more of the plan beyond: “GO.”

So, for those of you who have been looking for an update on our move…there you have it. We’re moving the first week of July. Boxes will soon start being packed. Yard sale piles are already in progress. Some sad goodbyes have taken place. God has it all under control.

This weekend…

I talked to my husband without any interruption from our children.

I slept in till nine on a Saturday morning.

I ate coconut pecan french toast.

I browsed a used book store.

I only had one child.

I sat up talking with adults.

I got a full night’s, uninterrupted sleep.

I ate onion rings at Hodad’s.

I walked the pier at Ocean Beach.

I retreated.

Thank you to Life Pacific College for taking us on such a wonderfully relaxing staff retreat.

I was blessed and refreshed and loved every minute of it!

And THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU

to our wonderful friends who helped us by watching Eli, Cora & Ezra!!

And He said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a secluded place and rest awhile.” Mark 6:31

As you can see, we did some pretty good eating this weekend at new places found through word of mouth.

I always love discovering new restaurants, so…what is one of your favorite places to eat?

 

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The Life & Times of a Sleep-Deprived Mom

I want to write a post, but my brain is so scattered.

All week I’ve misplaced what day it is. I swear today is the second Friday we’ve had, because yesterday was definitely Friday. Nothing has happened in the right order and not much went according to plan.

Early Monday morning I woke up and got violently sick. My first thought was, “Please God, I can’t be pregnant!” Luckily, it was just a stomach bug. The funniest part was later that morning; Josh said something that showed he was having the same thoughts. I guess we’re both pretty certain that our birthing years are over. Maybe it’s time to make that call to the doctor.

I’d like to go through the rest of this week for you, but I honestly don’t remember what happened Tuesday or Wednesday. It’s a blank for me.

Yesterday the kids and I went to visit Josh at work. This is always quiet the experience. Whenever we walk on the campus of Life Pacific College I feel like someone sprays my children with a magic potion that causes them to forget every lesson I’ve tried to drill in to them about how we behave in public.

And the running…down the ramp, up the stairs, across the field, through the landscaping. Trying to look cool and college-y relevant is futile when I’m yelling at Eli to get out of the tree, and “Hurry up, Cora,” and Ezra is crawling on the ground pretending to be a cat and Silas is tied to my body. I’ve given up on attempting to appear anything other than harried when I’m there.

Walking through the doors of the Cafe, the three oldest greet their father from 30 feet away with yells and pounding feet. Regardless of what else is going on, they run up to the counter and proceed to tell him everything that has happened in the last 5 hours. All at once. At an ear-piercing decibel. In 10 seconds.

Trying to dish up food for all of us is fun…for the 50 or so college students who are watching me. Constant reminders to sit down are alternated with questions on entrée, side and drink choices. Eli is in the stage where all of the non-caffeinated sodas or juices (or sometimes both) need to be mixed to make up his own special concoction. Ezra, as usual, refuses to eat anything expect pudding and maybe a sucker.

Why do I put myself through this, you may ask.

1) We love to see Josh. We miss him while he’s gone during the day and I wish we could eat lunch with him everyday.

B) There are times when I just need to think, and one of the best ways to think is to strap all of the kids in the car (where they can’t move) and drive. Josh’s job is far enough away that I get some good thinking time in, but not so far that the kids get antsy.

Fourthly, we spend a lot of time in our apartment. Stumbling on top of each other, cleaning up, making a mess, cleaning up again, watching TV and listening to the kids scream at the daycare downstairs. We’re bored, we’re cramped, we want to interact with other people. On the campus there’s a ton of students who want to play, there’s room to stretch our legs and home feels like a destination again instead of a confinement.

I’m not sure why I told you all that, but I’m going to leave it. This is the random workings of a sleep-deprived momma’s brain.

A couple more things:

Did you know we’re smiling now?

Did you hear that Eli won his first school award? Apparently he’s the Shoe Tying Sheriff. I find this interesting, as he insisted that we get him slip on shoes for school because he didn’t want to have to tie his shoes. Such a silly boy!

Thanks for putting up with my random today. We’ll return to our regularly scheduled programming on Monday, after I hopefully get some rest!

Have a great weekend!!

{I promise I’m not always so crazy! I’d love for you to sign up for (free) email updates or subscribe in a reader to my blog. Then you can get to know me when I’ve had more than 4 hours sleep.}

Giveaway Winner & my Friday Favs!

Here we are once again…it’s Friday!

I’m super excited because we’re going to the mountains today! Josh was asked to attend Life Pacific‘s Fall Retreat this year and the thought of being home alone with all four kids for two whole days had me terrified. Luckily, our friend, who also works at the college, pulled some strings to make it possible for the kids and I to tag along!

Funnily enough, this will only be my second retreat with Life Pacific; my first being my freshman year the Fall of 1999.

I’m looking forward to the coolness of the mountain air, some pine trees that will remind me of home, and inspiring worship and messages. We’re only going to be gone for one night, but I’m going to make the most of it!

::

Now, without further ado…I will announce the winner of my first giveaway!

The winner of their very own, personal copy of Anne Jackson‘s “Permission to Speak Freely” is…*

Laura

Congratulations!

I’ll be emailing you to get your shipping information. For those of you who didn’t win, I wish I could buy each person who entered a book. However, I have four children and no job, so I’d suggest heading out to your nearest bookstore and picking it up! :)

Oh, and the next time I decide to do a giveaway would someone please remind me that if it ends at midnight I have to stay up till midnight? Thanks…

::

And now for my Friday Favs…

Meeting people from Twitter and blogging in real life makes it that much more fun to read what they write. I got to meet Dawn Carter at our tweetup last month.

Josh and I sat next to her and her husband, the guys bonded over the fact that they have crazy wives addicted to Twitter. Even better, we discovered that we have a six degrees of separation thing going on through Life Pacific College and the Idea Camp.

So this week Dawn wrote two posts that I really connected with and wanted to share.

The first was a guest post for Tyler Braun as part of his Dancing Jesus: Mentoring in the Church blog series.

Dawn provides a number of reasons not to mentor. What I loved about this post is that I really believe in mentoring. I want more mentoring and I want to mentor more. The most important thing about mentoring though is that you’re doing it for the right reasons. My main right reason is: God told me to.

The last thing we need is this flavor of exhausted Christian influencing another generation. Mentoring isn’t about adding another project to do. Or having someone under your tutelage. In fact, it isn’t about you at all. (Dawn Carter, Man of Depravity.com)

Ahh! I love this post!

The second post that Dawn wrote this week was on her own blog, The Chronicles of Dawnia.

So here’s the thing. I’ve been a SAHM for a while now and I haven’t really been participating in ministry outside my home (because being a mom is a ministry…can I get an AMEN). But, I have been reading blogs, listening to sermons, attending online seminars and reading books about ministry, Christian life, leadership, mentoring, burnout, and more.

I have become Jabba the Christian.

And Dawn pointed it out to me. She is starting to do something about it and I am praying about starting to do something about it — is that like saying I’ll start my diet on Monday? But truthfully, I know that I’ve been consuming a lot and I want to make sure that I’m looking for those opportunities that God provides for me to pour it out.

That’s partly why I started this blog; I see it as a ministry.

As Dawn says:

It feels good. And it beats being the huge green Hutt. (Chronicles of Dawnia)

::

Jonathan Acuff is brilliant. He has discovered a way of making fun of Christians without causing us all to become defensive. Maybe it’s because we know he’s one of us. It’s like that rule that it’s ok for me to make fun of my sister, but if you try to do it I’ll punch you in the face. I never feel like punching Jonathan in the face.

He should make that his new tagline:

Jonathan Acuff | A Guy You Don’t Want to Punch in the Face

Anyway, as funny as he is, I’ve discovered a little secret about him…a secret I share with the hordes of others who read his blog. He’s actually smart and serious. Every Wednesday is “serious day” at the Stuff Christians Like blog. God has definitely spoken to me through a few of these Wednesday posts (He speaks through the funny ones too, just so you know).

Back to the point…this Wednesday Jon Acuff wrote a post titled: Wondering why God makes life impossible sometimes. He discusses those situations with God where:

More than just not showing up when I want him to in the way I want him to, it feels like he actually makes things harder than they need to be. (Jonathan Acuff, StuffChristiansLike.net)

Aside from the funny story about him in his underwear in 8th grade, Jonathan gives an interesting reason for why God does this in our life. I’m not going to tell you though, you have to read it for yourself.

::

So that’s it…we have a winner to my first giveaway, some good blog posts for you to peruse this weekend and I’m off to the mountains!!

Before I go, though, I’d love to hear about your favorite posts from this week or what your weekend plans are…

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*I chose the winner by assigning each commenter a number 1-15.
The winner was #9