Thursday, February 28, 2013

February Evaluation

  • Read through the entire Bible in a year following a chronological reading plan (got behind here and there but have been able to catch up and currently on track)
  • Memorize a verse a week (for full disclosure I am starting with verses that I have previously memorized but have lost full memory of) Yes! Thanks to a class I have far exceeded this goal memorizing Psalm 145:8-10, Hebrews 4:14-16, Psalm 105:1-3 (working on 4-5 this week) and John 15:7-8
  • Spend 30 minutes daily concentrated on prayer and Bible reading (this has been a struggle, especially the last 2 weeks, but I have done many days)
  • Continue to record daily blessings to cultivate thankfulness (Goal is 10,000 things) Doing my best to keep up
  • Praying throughout the day for specified things (still developing lists and plan for this) Getting better but still not where I want to be. Planning to finalize my list system this week
  • Read a book a month apart from SWI matrerial (I got really behind on some things so this went by the wayside until this week. I am half way through The Story Template and plan to finish it next week and read another book as well in March)
  • Journal 5 days a week (Failed miserably this month! working on reworking my day and priorities)
  • Write (working on books) 5 days a week (Again failed miserably, see notes from above)
  • Finish my first fiction book (not currently on track to do this, but I believe it can be accomplished by God's grace)
  • Write 3 blog posts a week (Still not doing so well on this, but should do it this week and hope to fill in my blog calendar to have an outline, again reordering priorities)
  • Continue to meet once a month with writing group (YES! Met Feb 2nd and Next meeting this Saturday)
  • Have one day a month for personal retreat time to pray, read the Bible and write (Yes! Praise God for this time, very helpful)
  • Complete Level 1 of Rosetta Stone Russian (still on track to do this)
  • Begin working on a Christ-centered prenatal/delivery/postnatal education (developed a plan to get this started and have had many conversations to aid in knowing what things to concentrate on)
  • Go on a date once a month (Yes! Had a great night out and Love Groupons and free sundaes to help) 
  • Go on one overnight trip away (Have plans in the works for this :) )
  • Read together for 30 minutes once a week (Still have not done this)
  • Discuss and plan the week to come on Sunday afternoon (Doing this most of the time, ongoing process )
  • Take each child on a "date" once a month (I am pretty sure this happened, my memory is a little fuzzy)
  • Spend individual time with each child at home once a week (at least 20 minutes) Still working on getting this more regular, but it has happened some
  • Work on memorizing Psalm 23 with Jamey and Lillian (Doing very well and are close to having all memorized)
  • Finish current Pre-K curriculum with Jamey and Lillian (Still on track)
  • Continue going to playgroup on Tuesdays (YES!)
  • (I need to develop more educational goals, so I guess a goal for this year will be learning to do this for next year)
  • Begin a garden planting at least tomatoes (hoping to do more) This month we began digging up our spot for the garden and got and put together a compost bin! Also planning what we want to do
  • Try 1 new recipe a month (Did not happen)
  • Keep up with cleaning calendar (Fell off the wagon! Will be cleaning in the morning and then getting back on track next week)
  • Develop general cleaning schedule (definitely thinking this through and may use my own schedule for some things and the cleaning calendar for those things that I would other wise forget)
Health and Fitness
  • Exercise for at least 30 minutes 3 days a week (I have gotten 2 days a week regularly and every once and a while other days)
  • Lose 30 lbs (still losing slowly but surely. Did not lose as much this month as I would have liked)
  • Continue hosting Women's prayer once a month (YES!)
  • Email workers once a month (YES!)
  • Send 2 encouraging notes a month (Fail! Need to put this on my calendar so I will do these!)
I am thankful I was consistent for 6 weeks before falling off the band wagon. I am thankful for God gently nudging me back to my goals this week. I am so tempted when I fail to simply give up, but having my quiet alone time helped me to rethink as well as actually journaling yesterday. God is reminding me about consistency and priorities, the priorities HE has given me. When I fell sway to things that were not priorities I began feeling depressed and alone. As I have thought through these things the past couple of days I realized I need to make necessary adjustments and do the things God has given me to do.

How was your February?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Feb 18 to 24

526. Sleeping until 7
527. Gabriel sleeping 6 hours
528. Having an extended time with the Lord this morning
529. Worshiping the Lord in silence and solitude
530. Being in a class on prayer
531. Getting practical plans worked out for things I believe the Lord is guiding me in
532. Sweet time of family prayer for Pastor Nathan
533. Getting to teach our kids about fasting and prayer/interceding for others
534. Taking the 3 older kids outside
535. Watching Reuben explore outside for the first time since walking
536. Jamey, Lillian and Reuben playing with the cozy coups
537. Starting a compost pile (waiting for our bin)
538. Connecting as a family
539. Keeping the TV off until after 5pm!
540. Going to bed early
541. Getting school and Russian lesson done in less than an hour
542. All 4 kids going to play group
543. Many people at play group
544. Lots of good conversation
545. Reuben playing and running around!
546. Great friendship
547. Meeting with Dawn
548. Getting all of my J-term assignments and reading finished
549. Getting assignments completed for prayer class
550. Meeting a girl who wants to learn about birthing education to take to the developing world (more confirmation for me)
551. Connecting with more sisters
552. Water aerobics
553. Hot tubs and saunas
554. Community group growing
555. New people
556. Being a part of something bigger than myself: Kingdom work for God
557. Coffee creamer
558. Open and honest conversation about suffering
559. Learning how to better help and encourage each other in the Truth
560. Getting sleep
561. Praying with other Sisters
562. Singing praise to the Lord
563. Having conversations with more confirmation about education
564. Being encouraged and encouraging others
565. Hearing more stories to learn from
566. Being able to make a quick run to the store with Gabriel
567. Jim having lunch ready when I got home from class
568. Enjoying conversation as a family
569. Jamey eating lunch well without complaint
570. Eating ice cream cake together
571. Getting all 4 kids to the pool for Jamey's swim lesson on time
572. Lillian and Reuben sitting quietly while we watched the kids swimming
573. Lillian showing an interest in swimming
574. Great conversations with even more confirmation
575. Having sisters who understand the way I think
576. Learning more things
577. Getting 3 kids fed, Bible reading, in bed and asleep before 7
578. Gabriel smiling when Lillian gave him kisses
579. Early bed time
580. Getting cake ordered quickly
581. Getting school done in a timely manner
582. Having children who desire to read and do school all day
583. Jim getting some Greek done
584. Having a flexible husband who doesn't freak out when planning goes awry
585. Having a husband who knows how to figure things out well
586. Listening to Jamey and Lillian say the 23rd Psalm
587. Reuben getting more active and saying more that can be understood
588. Getting some laundry done
589. Discovering that I really do need to plan my weeks out
590. God teaching me things in many different ways
591. Jamey turning 4!
592. Having a great day as a family
593. Watching Jamey and Reuben chase each other and wrestle (boys are so much fun)
594. Reuben using a "big" fork
595. Lillian doing puzzles and mixing up the pieces
596. Gabriel's big smiles
597. Growing in communication
598. Fun movies on Netflix
599. Having children who want to watch educational videos over other movies (When we told Jamey he could chose a movie to watch on his birthday he chose "Alphabet Al")
600. Jamey doing really well at swim lessons
601. Getting to blog
602. "Seeing" Rachel on Skype
603. Celebrating Jamey's life with friends
604. 3 Papa John's Pizzas for $12! (Love great deals)
605. Nice afternoon
606. Praying with many people for friends going overseas
607. Relaxing evening at home
608. Watching X-Men First Class
609. Getting a jump start on planning for the week
610. Learning how to suffer with others
611. Having a place to feed Gabriel and still hear the sermon
612. Being reminded about suffering
613. Ice Cream Cake!!!!!
614. Getting to meet with Dawn
615. Having someone to share life with that you can learn from and vice versa
616. Beautiful weather
617. Finding a good deal on note cards
618. Jim getting started on digging up part of the back yard for a garden
619. Playing outside with the kids
620. Watching Reuben explore
621. Playing catch with Lillian
622. Jamey helping Jim dig up paving stones
623. Easy bed time
624. Getting mostly planned for the week
625. Going to bed early

Friday, February 22, 2013

Jamey is 4

It has been 4 years since we welcomed Jamey into our family and what a blessing from the Lord he is! There are times I cannot believe that he is already 4 thinking he was born yesterday. And now there are many times  I forget that he is only 4. God has truly blessed him with a mind that wants to learn and explore. His favorite things to do are read, write and put together puzzles and he is beginning to draw as well. I watch as his mind turns trying to figure something out and it is amazing when it does. Jamey is quite stubborn and knows what he wants to do. (I cannot imagine where he gets that from. :) ) Already something has to be his idea for him to "agree" to do it. He has a strong will. But Jamey is also tender hearted. He loves his sister and brothers calling them "mine" regularly. He loves to give hugs and kisses and snuggle when he is sleepy. He is also a "typical" older brother wanting to do everything first and better. How I pray that I am diligent in teaching him every moment that I can. I know that God has great plans for Jamey because he is made in the image of God. I pray that the Lord will save Jamey for God's Kingdom and Glory. I am anxious to see where God will take Jamey, but for now I am thankful he is my little boy. I am thankful I have been given 4 years to be his mama. And I pray for many more years to watch him grow and learn and hopefully see him respond to the grace of God in faith to join the heavenly Kingdom. I love you, Jamey!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Feb 11 to 17

431. Getting an early start and feeling awake
432. Praying before reading my Bible (really helps)
433. Getting school done with Reuben in the room
434. Reuben saying "Thank you" and "love you"
435. Jamey making connections in Russian
436. Going to the grocery store by myself and getting through in a timely fashion without freaking out (this is a major blessing!)
437. Jim and the kids getting the dusting done while I was at the store
438. Staying mostly on schedule
439. Reading extra to my kids
440. Playing with my kids
441. Getting almost everything done today that I wanted to do (hoping to get the last thing done after writing my blessings)
442. Having a God I can cry out to when I feel like I am falling apart
443. Being able to memorize God's Word
444. Imparting Truth to my kids
445. Free ebooks
446. Jeopardy!
447. Having a life hid in Christ
448. Writing!
449. Going to bed at a decent hour
450. Waking refreshed
451. Getting ahead on my reading goals
452. Great play time
453. Getting to meet with Dawn
454. Unexpected trip to pie kitchen!
455. Getting a little more done
456. Getting to go to water aerobics
457. Melanie being at community group
458. Having 4 new people at community group
459. Connecting with new Brothers and Sister
460. Waking refreshed at 5 am
461. Gabriel sleeping until 5 am
462. Going to Sojourn's Ash Wednesday Service
463. Being reminded of what I would be without Christ
464. God giving me another full year on Earth
465. Learning more about fasting
466. Watching Jamey make Reuben laugh
467. Free Blizzard
468. Gabriel smiling
469. Gabriel lifting his head
470. Reuben's kisses
471. Beautiful Snow
472. God still teaching me and working on my heart
473. Kristi being able to have Lillian come play
474. Jamey doing everything his swim teacher asked him to do!
475. Early bed time with little complaint for all kids
476. Angie Tolpin reaching out to me from (more confirmation from God)
477. Taking the morning easy
478. Teaching Jamey more writing skills
479. Getting Rosetta Stone to work
480. Getting what I needed to done today
481. Having time to talk to Jim
482. Going to Water Aerobics
483. Sweet ladies who encourage me at SWI
484. Talking to Amy
485. Seeing Christine and Amanda
486. Listening to Jamey and Reuben laugh together
487. Sleeping until 7
488. Gabriel sleeping 9 hours!
489. Jamey opening the car door for me
490. Running errands and spending less than $15 for everything we needed
491. Jamey being excited about "shopping and hopping"
492. Becca getting off of jury duty
493. Catching up with Tanya
494. Talking with Renee
495. Jamey doing very well at swim lessons
496. Going out on a date with Jim
497. Getting to try Zoe's Kitchen (which was very good)
498. Free Sundae at Graeter's!!!!!
499. Having good conversation with Jim
500. Being able to go out just the 2 of us! :)
501. My parents getting here safely
502. Smooth bed time
503. Movie night with the family
504. Netflix
505. Sleeping in
506. Snuggling with Lillian
507. Brunch at Highland Morning
508. ICE CREAM CAKE!!!!!
509. New clothes and bracelet
510. Relaxing Saturday afternoon
511. Fellowship with Sojourners
512. Meeting new people
513. Watching Reuben play with a dog half his size and twice size
514. Playing peek-a-boo with Reuben
515. My ear finally draining
516. Free Donuts for breakfast!
517. Getting to church early
518. Learning about suffering
519. Trying a new Mexican restaurant
520. The missions cookout still taking place
521. Meeting new people who love missions
522. Getting to share about Women's prayer
523. Being encouraged about women's prayer
524. Gabriel sleeping during the cookout
525. Prayer for the Wilburn's

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Ash Wednesday and Birthday

Today was both and I wish my birthday always fell on Ash Wednesday. Growing up I did not observe this day, but today I learned more about the celebration. Or perhaps the better phrase is this day of reflection. On the day of my birth I was able to think about my rebirth in Christ. I was born physically but spiritually dead. I was alive in the human sense, but dead in sin. But because of Christ, not only am I alive currently, but now I am alive spiritually and I will live forever with God! What a blessing that is.
Today I saw more of the depths of my sin. It was ugly and dark. But then I saw the snow come and remind me that because I am in Christ I am covered by His blood that makes me whiter than snow and beautiful. My sin is covered and I am free. Praise God I am free. I am free to live as He has created me to live. I am not perfect, but I can enjoy the life He has given me and know that when I stumble I can come back to Him in repentance and He will restore me. I know He is not done with me yet and that brings me such hope and joy. All I need is Jesus!

At the foot of the crossWhere grace and suffering meetYou have shown me your loveThrough the judgment you received
And you've won my heartAnd you've won my heart, now I can
Trade these ashes in for beautyAnd wear forgiveness like a crownComing to kiss the feet of mercyI lay every burden down at the foot of the cross
At the foot of the crossWhere I am made completeYou have given me lifeThrough the death you bore for me
And you've won my heartAnd you've won my heart, now I can
Trade these ashes in for beautyAnd wear forgiveness like a crownComing to kiss the feet of mercyI lay every burden down at the foot of the cross


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Lillian Quotes

"Bye-bye! I'm going to water polo."

Calling Jamey to the breakfast table: "Come here, Jamey and eat your legs!"

During "Bible reading" in the morning she opens her Bible and says, "Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall. Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the kings horses and all the kings men couldn't put Humpty together again."

Listing off our friends who's family photo is on our fridge: "That's Abby, that's Phinehas, that's Mrs. Dawn, that's Grape."

Jim: Hey, look toes.
Lillian: Yes, I like toes!

"Don't hop so high. That's dangerous!"

While picking up her hot dog to eat it: "Come here, you" in a soothing voice

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Feb 4 to 10

361. Jamey reading his first book
362. Being able to teach my kids
363. Getting caught up on Russian lessons
364. Jamey helping Lillian learn
365. Lillian wanting to learn
366. Reuben showing some interest in reading books
367. Having all 4 kids in the school room and it going smoothly
368. Getting cleaning done with 4 kids around
369. Working on SWI assignments
370. Having a very productive day
371. Having a shopping day with Lillian
372. Groupon to get some clothes
373. Lillian wanting to hang out with me
374. Going to bed early
375. Kids sleeping until 7am!!!!!
376. Getting school done even sleeping until 7
377. Jamey wanting to learn
378. Meeting new people at water aerobics
379. Getting cookies made
380. Having Becca to help me
381. Community Group!
382. New couple at community group
383. Great discussion and openness
384. Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate icing
385. Learning about adoring the Lord
386. Being encouraged by other sisters desiring to grow in prayer
387. Kristi letting Lillian come play
388. Swim lessons for Jamey
389. Getting to see Renee and Renee
390. Reuben sitting and eating Cheerios during swim lessons quietly
391. Going to bed a little early
392. Kids sleeping until 7
393. Lillian sleeping in her bed the whole night
394. Reuben holding hands to bless lunch
395. Jamey teaching Lillian and Reuben
396. Lillian cheering on Jamey for doing well at swim lessons
397. Teaching opportunities
398. Kids who want to watch educational videos instead of normal movies
399. Having kids who like to read and write
400. Getting exercise
401. Meeting Angela who is from the same area I am
402. Making connections about people we know
403. Learning about more missions opportunities
404. Finding out a friend has also been to Moldova
405. Learning very interesting facts about the history of the SBC
406. Angela realizing she remembers my mom and me from Smyrna First
407. Gabriel sleeping through all of my SWI class
408. Running into Alina
409. MOMStogether
410. Seeing Allison
411. Hearing about work going on in Africa
412. An unexpected family evening
413. Jamey doing very well at swim lessons
414. Jamey enjoying the water
415. Meeting more people interested in working overseas
416. Having a king sized bed
417. Kids sleeping until 7 again
418. Reuben saying "I love you"
419. Playing together as a family
420. Quiet day at home
421. Watching some shows
422. Getting caught up on cleaning
423. Getting some papers written
424. Being able to wake up early this morning
425. Getting to church early
426. Connecting with several people at church
427. Seeing Amir doing well!
428. Blizzards (DQ kind)
429. Hearing from a couple of people I had not seen or talked to lately
430. Reuben saying Amen after bed time prayers

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Jan 28 to Feb 3

271. Getting to sleep in a little
272. The kids sleeping "late"
273. Jim doing school (forgot to mention he did it all last week too!)
274. Mama and Lillian trip to the grocery store
275. Getting to teach Lillian in a practical environment
276. Free suckers
277. Free cookies
278. Talking to Lillian about learning to care for a home
279. Getting to do all of my Bible reading
280. Jamey and Lillian listening to the Bible
281. Both asking to read "excellent wife"
282. Reuben's hugs
283. Watching Reuben get more confident in walking
284. Gabriel turning 2 months old!
285. Gabriel's alertness and looking around
286. Gabriel enjoying the swing
287. Jamey learning to sound out words for spelling
288. Almost getting caught up on the things I needed to do today
289. Free ebooks
290. Hearing from lots of workers for Friday
291. Getting more planning done
292. Getting to journal
293. Working on scheduling
294. God giving me the ability to plan and schedule
295. Watching a grocery bill plummet :)
296. Waking mostly refreshed at 6 am
297. Getting lots of Bible reading done
298. Time to pray
299. Gabriel growing and right on par on the growth charts
300. Playgroup!
301. Catching up with Kristy
302. Working out the afternoon so Dawn and I could meet
303. Being able to share with Dawn and have her share with me
304. Enjoying special time with friends
305. Going to water aerobics
306. Community Group
307. Enjoying Community
308. Learning more about contentment
309. Discussing money in an open and safe environment
310. Being able to ask difficult or unpopular questions
311. Learning to pray through Scripture
312. Hearing from workers around the world
313. God keeping us and much of the area safe from a severe storm
314. Getting Bible reading and reflection done early this morning
315. Getting more sleep
316. Spending some quality time with Reuben
317. Reuben's hugs and kisses
318. Jim doing school with the kids
319. SWI starting back
320. The privilege of sitting under older women to learn about prayer
321. Being reminded that prayer begins with God and that God is sovereign over all things (I needed that reminder for the rest of that day)
322. Getting a nap
323. Lillian and Reuben sleeping
324. Being shown how week and fleshly I am
325. Having a personal God that I can go to even when I am losing it
326. Not having to go to God in a perfect state
327. Being covered by Christ's blood so I am seen as perfect even in the midst of sinful responses
328. Gabriel sleeping in the swing
329. Gabriel sleeping 7 hours last night
330. The 3 older kids going to bed without a fuss at 6:30 pm
331. A few moments to journal
332. Working on my blog
333. Getting to "see" Jill on Skype
334. "Meeting" Abby
335. The invention of Skype
336. Going to water aerobics twice this week
337. Getting to go in the hot tub!!!!!
338. Meeting new people
339. Having an interesting teacher for History of SBC
340. Stimulating conversation with sisters
341. Seeing people I haven't seen in awhile
342. Making it home safely in thick snowfall (thick for someone who is not use to driving in snow)
343. Jim getting to come home early
344. Women's prayer
345. Beautiful Snow
346. Watching Jamey, Lillian and Phinehas play together
347. The gift of prayer
348. Funny kids
349. Having 7 people at writing group
350. Being encouraged by fellow writers
351. Encouraging other writers
352. Having sisters who are interested in writing
353. Having a pair of boots to wear in the snow
354. Beautiful snow and still being able to get out in it
355. Getting a decent amount of SWI reading done
356. Remembering the death is coming and that apart from God everything is meaningless
357. Getting some planning done for the week
358. Kids resting
359. Enjoying a movie
360. Nice weekend

Friday, February 1, 2013

Mission Highlight

Yesterday I was able to speak with one of our friends overseas. It is such a blessing to have technology that allows us to speak to each other and see each other even on opposite sides of the globe. It has been challenging sending close friends, but we know they are doing the work of the Lord. I love hearing their heart and being able to pray for them. What a privilege it is to pray for those who are in other countries who are serving and taking up their crosses daily so that others may hear the good news.

Do you know someone serving in another country? Take time to lift them up. If you don't know someone, pray for the Holy Spirit to move around the world and that God will be known among the lost.