Wednesday, June 29, 2011

remembering and thankfulness

Today I enjoyed a morning walk with Moriah. We strolled through the neighborhood between our apartment and the seminary's campus. The homes are lovely and the sidewalks are old, which gives us a lot to see with some bumps along the way! As we walked up to the campus I noticed a couple of girls reading their Bibles and journaling while sitting in a sunny spot on the sidewalk. I realized that a church camp most be using the campus as its venue. My thoughts were quickly confirmed as Moriah and I made our way onto the main square and saw students everywhere. Some were sincerely studying the Word and praying intently in spots allowing the solitude I'm sure they were encouraged to seek out. Others were in larger groups, and one even made a comment that "this is a church camp, doesn't it look like I'm talking to Jesus" as his on-looking leaders tried to disperse the group surrounding him.

Watching these students my mind was quickly reliving days when I'd been in similar situations. First as a student myself, I remember being sent out to have "quiet time" before the camp day could begin. Journaling was always helpful to me and I had a variety of journals over the years which accompanied me on camp excursions. Many of my old Bibles also have notes in the margins to remind myself of particular insights pastors shared, or truths the Lord was confirming to my heart. Then as a student ministry leader, I spent a few (three or maybe four?!) summers with students trying to spur on their pursuit of the Lord, all the while organizing games that might be entertaining, fun, and or gross enough without too much danger (usually that was our downfall). While games were not my cup of tea, I enjoyed helping a team of interns like myself as we developed journals for students, questions for small groups, and room assignment so that everyone was comfortable with at least one good friend. I don't know the eternal significance of that behind-the-scenes work, and I've often talked with Matt about it. Since I have no solid conclusions I won't go into that train of thought. Rather, I'll trust the Lord and His providence. That He was at work somehow in spite of us as fumbling interns who assumed much and misspoke often while trying with great weakness to teach about Christ.

*I really wanted to include an infamous "brown t-shirt" Summer Jam picture here of my favorite interns and myself... I tried and tried to no avail though I'm not sure why it didn't work!?!

These days were full. The times outside basking in the sun while seeking the Lord seem to have passed so quickly now. I don't think I knew then what a precious time I was afforded. But as I walked home and saw a homeschooling mom to five in her screened in porch I realized that I need not wish for tomorrow while missing the joys of today. This is a common and repetitive lesson in my life. I find myself thankful now, knowing that some day I may look back on our seminary life and think "wasn't that a sweet time... better than I ever realized". I'd rather know today that this life is a gift of God's grace and is to be treasured as a pointer to Himself and His abundant goodness.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

our days...

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve added to my blog. While I usually find myself reading other blogs almost daily, I don’t often have a lot I think “blog worthy” myself! I have a few ideas now, and hope to try and blog each week on my day off so that those of you who are far away will have an easier time glimpsing into our world.

So this has been a typical day lately…
Moriah is waking up at 7am hungry! She doesn’t give me much time before it’s obvious that eating takes priority over a diaper change or even getting dressed for the day.

Our mornings are usually filled with playing around the house, going on a cool summer walk, visiting with friends and their little ones, or heading off to work (where we often go out for the morning – library, park, etc.). When I work we have a 30 minute commute which allows Moriah time for a cat nap.

On Fridays I’ve found the morning to be the best grocery shopping time. We try to get to Kroger early, around 8am-8:30am so that we can finish there and head to ALDI by 9am when they first open. Their selection seems best early, and we’ve found ourselves in a funny ALDI Friday morning crowd with most of the same (elderly) faces week after week. Needless to say, ALDI shoppers are remarkably friendly and I usually leave feeling like Moriah is a mini celebrity after speaking with so many people about my baby, her big brown eyes, chubby cheeks, and curly red hair!

Depending on our morning (and whether or not she’s had her cat nap), Moriah usually naps for about 45 minutes or an hour at 11am. During this nap I’m able to pick up toys, wash or put away dishes, or unload groceries if we’ve been home.

When Moriah wakes up it’s about lunch time! She eats very well these days… I’m hoping to post some of her baby food “menus” soon. Mr. S. is also a big eater, so lunch is usually promptly served and eaten within the span of only a few minutes – seriously!

After lunch we find more time for playing or running errands if we’re home. This is also the time Mr. S. typically wants to head outside to play when I’m working, so although it’s the hottest time of day we don’t stay out too long and Moriah has a chance to sport her sweet summer sun hat.

Moriah’s afternoon nap is very consistent and offers her the rest she always needs by this time of day. She doesn’t always go right to sleep, but usually does and most often sleeps for two hours or so. Mr. S. also has an afternoon nap, so most days they both sleep from 2pm-4pm. When I work I fill nap time with The Martha Stewart Show for an hour, then my current book (I hope to update you with some reviews) for the next hour. I also clean up the playroom, do laundry, and dishes. If I’m home, I clean up, iron Matt’s clothes, and read as well.

At home, Moriah wakes up to play for a bit before our evening is in full swing. If I’m working we get things cleaned up and play (as calmly as we can) for the last hour or so before we head home at 5pm.

Moriah eats at 5pm-ish or as soon as we get home. Then I cook dinner while she finishes off her finger foods with an ever-increasing independence. It’s a good day if dinner is well timed and on it’s way to the table when Matt walks in soon after 6pm. If Moriah’s finished eating and cleaned up, it’s an even better day. And if the table is set and dinner has made it there while staying warm, it’s a BIG jackpot for me, haha!

After dinner it’s time to clean up and give Moriah a bath. This summer our ever-other-night bath routine has become just about every night after sweating, swimming, and playing in ways that seem to make even a baby girl a bit dirtier. After Moriah’s dried off and ready with a night time diaper, we enjoy two or three stories together (I hope to review some of our favorites soon), sing a song, and pray before we lay her down to sleep in her crib.

That is the typical rhythm of my day, and it is one I am SO thankful for. The Lord has given me tremendous grace and abundant provision is this calm season, which is centered around Himself, my family and home. I am very blessed for the opportunity to serve God, Matt, and Moriah in these ways every day.