Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thoughts on the Season

It's only 5 days past Christmas yet nearly all the trappings of the holiday have disappeared from our home.  I love Christmas decorations but I'm usually really ready to take them down and move on after Christmas Day.

Maybe I put them up too soon.  Perhaps  next year I should put them up later and enjoy them more after the craziness of Christmas Day has passed.

Every year at Christmas there is talk about the decorations and traditions of Christmas and their origins.  Santa Claus is banned from households and Christmas carols fill shopping malls.  Everywhere there seems to be a class of the Holy and the Profane.

I think of the story of Joseph - beaten by his brothers, sold to slavery, thrown in prison and then exalted to a position to save his family and God's chilren.  Joseph wrote:

Genesis 50:20, God's Word Translation (1995)
"Even though you planned evil against me, God planned good to come out of it."

The Christmas holiday season is similar.  The evil satan had planned in this world can be seen in many holiday traiditions.

We do not know the date of Christ's birth.  It is celebrated at the same time as a traditional pagan holiday.  We use Red and Green because of the traditions of this same holiday.  We decorate a tree because of the druids worship of nature.  Evergreen usage in decorating also comes from the druids.

Yet "God planned good to come out of it."  The pagan holiday is redeemed as a time that the entire world acknolwedges Christ's kingdom.  The Red speaks of God's blood on the cross.  The  color Green  and the evergreen boughs remind us of his gift of eternal life.   The tree we decorate in our homes reminds us of the cross this baby would one day die upon.

We give gifts to each other to remind us of the Greatest Gift ever given us - Eternal life.

Santa Claus perhaps takes the biggest kick from those wishing to keep all things holy in this season.  But Saint Nicholas was a real man.  A wealthy man who gave his fortune away to help others.  A Christian man who sought to spread the love of Christ through out his known world.

We look so hard to make things Holy in our lives that we forget that God himself redeems the evil of this world.  He is Holy.  He is omnipotent.  He is worthy of our praise.

This last day of the year, I will praise my maker.  I will take time to be still and remember His life.  His love.  His death.

Lord, show me your redeeming power.  Open my eyes to let me see your mighty hand all around me.  There is so much good to come in this world.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Memories 2010

Merry Christmas

Christmas Eve Service
 Our friends, Emma and Elijah

I was honored to sing at the Christmas Eve Service with the Praise Band.

Opening Gifts from Grant - Stop taking my picture!

Christmas Day

Marilyn and Larry Rogers joined us to open gifts.  Since they were in the
process of moving and had no tree in their travel trailer, they put
their gifts under ours.  We were honored!

Her first Cell Phone - watch out world!  She's wired!

The "boys" playing Larry's new wii game.

 "Just Dance" with Jill, Mark and Marilyn!  We laughed so hard!

Chris added to his tool chest

Kale and Kate watching a movie in
Miss Ashely's room.

Jill and Marilyn watching a movie - right before Marilyn "rested" her eyes.

Christmas Dinner with our Family of Choice

Mark, Jill, Kale, Kate and Jack Palmer,  Larry and Marilyn Rogers
David, Kim, Chris and Ashley Beach 

What makes us Family of Choice?
We have all made the Choice to follow Christ.  It is the blood of our Savior,
shed on Calvary's cross for our sins, that makes us family. 
Are you part of our Family of Choice?

Choose today.  Choose Christ.

Jack watching a movie. 
A perfect end to a perfect day.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Name

The kids had a writing assignment today looking at the names of Jesus.  They were asked to pick their favorite name and tell me why this name meant something to them.

Well, what's good for the goose is good for the gander!

"There are many names used in the Bible to describe Jesus.  These names tell us His characteristics.  My favorite name for Jesus is hard to choose.

At different times he has been my Provider.  My Healer.  He is my Prince of Peace in storms as well as the quiet times of the day.  He is the Alpha and Omega - knowing my beginning from my end and planning every day in between.

Today, I read in 1 Corinthinas 10:4 that He is my Rock.  I really like that name.  Rock.  Strong.  Stable.  From the time of Creation.  Unmovable.  Sturdy. 

He hideth my face in the cleft on the Rock and covers me there with His hand.

The Rock.  My Father God."

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Why I Believe In Santa Claus

Even Santa kneels at the manger
Worshiping the Christmas child
Knowing that the baby there
Is the Savior of the World

Even Santa wears the color Red
Praising the Heavenly Father
Seeing that this baby's blood
Will cover the sins of the World

Even Santa trims his coat in White
Seeking the Holy Spirit
The baby's own comforter
Who brings light to the darkness of this World

Even Santa brings a gift to God
Bowing humbly at the Throne
Reminding us of God's gift - His precious Son
A Christmas Gift to Redeem each child in this World

Even Santa kneels at the Manger
The world's noise and bustle he ignores
His own myth pointing to the One
Who redeems us
Who sanctifies us
Who guides us
                                               ~ KKWB

Merry Christmas

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Yeah, Still Sex

Tonight was Grooming Night.

I shut myself in the bathroom and did my hair, plucked eyebrows;  my nails have been shaped and legs shaved.

Some of you are saying, "yup, her kids are older."  But when my kids were babies I still did this.  Sometimes it was only a 30 minute slot carved out during nap time.  Other times I enlisted their dad.  Usually on Thursday nights.  I bathed the kids, gave them over to their daddy and headed to the bathroom.

Confession Time:  A friend is growing her hair color out.  Underneath she has discovered beautiful white locks of hair.  We both have an autoimmune disorder.  After reading the link between hair color and autoimmune junk, she gave up haircolor.  I said I'd do it with her. . .I'm a bad friend.  I went and looked into the chemical linked to the diseases and found a haircolor that did not contain that chemical and tonight, I colored my hair.  Underneath my color, all I had found was a mousy brown/gray mess.  The rich brown is back.  Sorry, friend.  I'm still saying, "Cut it short!!"

While I was rinsing my hair tonight, I began to think about Queen Esther.  Only she wasn't queen yet.  She was preparing.  For a year!  They soaked her in expensive oils.  She bathed in scented water.  Her hair was conditioned and combed and made like silk. 

Now that's a Girl's Night Out!

We can't all do that.  That's a bit much.  Even for me.  But it begs the question:  what did I do to prepare for being with my Best Friend today?

Remember those date nights of courtship?  We showered, gussied up.  Smelled good.

Wanna have sex more?  Gussy up again!  Take the ten minutes to take a quick shower before bed.  Spray on something sweet.  Brush your hair til it shines.

Prepare.  For your time with your husband.  Your sweetheart.  Your lover.  Your soul mate.  Your gift from God.

Crawling into bed clean and sweet tells your mate, "Yes, I've chased kids all day.  My job stank.  Dinner was a flop.  But you are worth the extra time and effort."

Put on clean pj's - it doesn't have to be fancy but look nice.

Go the extra effort.  It will be worth it!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010


First, this rambling is not a doctoral thesis on the theological ramification of relationships and God's will.  It's what I've experienced.  It's what God is revealing to me.  Like an onion.  Layer by layer.

Some things we must always remember: 

God created us.  Remember that.  In all of glory.  Our beauty.  Our bumps, bruises.  Our wide hips, thick lips.  Our wave hair.  Our skinny thighs.  All of us.

God created us for relationship.  With parents.  With family.  With friends.  Good ones we celebrate.  Bad ones we learn from.  Easy ones.  Hard ones.  Ones that are part of our life for a short season as well as relationships that last for eternity.

God created us for Relationship with Him.  We were meant to live in Paradise with Him.  We were meant to life forever.  He desires to have a relationship with us each moment of each day.

Things got messed up when sin entered the Garden. Relationships were made harder. God had to seek us out while we hid in the bushes. Shame entered the garden. That's what makes sex hard to talk about.  Shame.

Somewhere along the line, probably about the time of Sin, we became ashamed of who we were - God's creation.  Shame because we as a race disobeyed God.   This continues today - ashamed of our bodies, ashamed of our flaws.  But God doesn't see any flaws! 

Note:  I am not advocating nudity, free love, etc.  Modesty in all things.  But take a look at how sin changed what we see as good.

Ever see a toddler who has found a forbidden cookie?  They don't display it proudly.  They go and hide.   Adam and Eve hid from God in the Garden and we have been hiding from God ever since.

Why did God create Marriage?  Why did he give us sexual relations? 

First, Marriage is a glimpse into our relationship with God. Intimate. Sacred. Pleasing. Safe.

Second, sexual relations are hard-wired into our bodies a physiological need.  It reduces stress.  It's a relational need - it builds intimacy.  It's an emotional need - it reminds us of what relation is important - our relationship with our spouse.

What does God say about sex?  Song of Solomon says alot!  It's great!  It's good!  It's relaxing!  It's between one woman and one man who are husband and wife!  It's part of God's plan! 

Sex in marriage fulfills God's promise - the two become one.

Sex outside of marrige brings shame and consequences - disease from multiple partners, unplanned pregnancies, broken relationships from adultry.

Does it require work?  You betcha.  

But that's another post.

Remember, this is a work in progress God is hammering out in my heart.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Answer


We serve a relational God.

I'm still pondering. . . .

Monday, December 6, 2010

I'm Thinking. . .

Why is sexual sin so much more devastating than other sins?

Why is sex before marriage destructive?

Why is sex after marriage weary?

Why are we afraid to talk about sex?

Why are so many of you cringing each time you read the word sex?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Lemonade Gives Me Indigestion

When blogging, or sharing information in any form, it's always a delicate line to walk knowing how much information and detail to share.  Especially when it concerns family - and even more so with your kids.  It is important that they be able to trust you - a safe place to share their fears, to whisper their dreams, scream their pain and confide their hopes.

So know that when I share this blog, I have asked Ashley's permission first.

We are in a tough place.  Tough as a mom and daughter.  Me letting go some.  Her finding independence while still needing mom and dad so much.    Tough as a pre-teen who wants to look and act and walk and talk like her friends.  Tough as a mom who sees her struggle.  Tough as a student who hates to take the extra steps to learn.  Tough as a teacher who requires those steps.  Tough as a human being in pain.  Tough as a mom who can't take the pain away.

Yeah, we have our "come to Jesus" moments.


We have fought.  We have "discussed."  And then we have prayed.  Prayed alot.

Sometimes there are tears.  Sometimes just alot of sighs.

Basically we are left with this decision:  Do we let what satan has meant for evil destroy us or do we allow God to turn it to good?

Destruction is easy.  We can give up.  Sit in our corners.  Do nothing.

Good takes work.  It's painful.  It takes molding and finishing.  Scrubbing, polishing, knocking off rough spots.

Recently, one of our little friends had to take a trip to Children's Hospital in Denver.  She has suffered for a year with abdominal pain and it was time to seek a specialist.  Her greatest fear was having cancer.  To her little mind, a children's hospital meant cancer because of a little boy at school who was diagnosed with cancer last year.  Ashley was able to sit with her, take her on-line to the hospital's web-site and talk to her about how great the hospital was at helping all sorts of children.  Ashley told her how they helped her walk better.  How nice the doctor's were.  How great the gelato was at the coffee shop.  By the end of the evening, our little friend was feeling comfortable, if not a little excited, to go to Denver!

Good from evil.

I guess you are wondering where the title for this post came from.  Today while driving into town, Ashley and I discussed writing a book together.  A book to guide parents and children through the difficulties of disabilities;  through visiting hospitals;  through "come to Jesus" meetings.  I said we could name it, "Making Lemonade" from the saying, "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade."

But I don't like Lemonade, and I suggested that as a title:  "I Don't Like Lemonade."  It gives me indigestion.

Just the thought of making lemonade is bad.  It means something is cut, squeezed;  syrup is added to boiling water to create a syrup then the whole  mess is poured over ice.  A shock to anyone's system.  Not a great perspective.  The end product is nice, but getting there is tough!

"Lemonade Gives Me Indigestion" - we both laughed at the thought.

Now a new era of blogging begins.  Lemonade with Indigestion.  Writings on how we are coping as a family with this adventure called life.

Tonight, all I can say is:  Bring me a Diet  Coke!!!!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

My Sis-In-Love

My Sister

Thanksgiving 2009

Thanksgiving 2010

With My Neice - Addyson

With our Kids after shopping 12 hours!

My Mom

My Mom

Loves Jesus
Loves Family

Loves Candles
Loves Decorating

Loves her Miss Periwinkle

Loves Her Christopher
Loves Mexican Food

Loves Christmas
Loves All Holidays

Loves Music
Loves that Chris loves the guitar!

Loves Fashion!
Loves Jewelry!
Loves Purses and Accessories!

Loves Gardening
Loves Outside
Loves Purple

Loves people
Loves God's Word
Loves Jesus

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Attention Beach Children

Attention All Beach Children!

When listening to instruction being given to your sibling, please take note of said lecture.  It will apply to you someday.

Help yourself by listening to the instruction given to your sibling and applying it to your own life.  Immediately!

Repetition of instruciton causes migrain headaches in  parents.  Multiple repetition of the same linstruction to the same child can cause aneuryisms of optic nerves in said parents.

When choosing to ignore instruction, please choose wisely.   Some instruction, is given too frequenly, may cause parents' heads to spin, projectile vomiting and disturbing voices to come from their throats.

Failure to head instruction in children may cause anger, resentment and tears.  It will lead to the correction of lessons and possibly further discipline.

Do not be alarmed if this happens.

Stay calm.  Flee to your room.  Open your Bible and consult the instruction manual:

Proverbs 8:33

Listen to instruction and be wise;
don't ignore it.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Just saying. . .

Sometimes there's just too much to say!

I must tell myself ten times a day, "that would be a good blog!"  But by the time I can sit down to write, the wonderful, imaginative, clever topic has left my mind altogether.

Not that I"m always clever and witty - but I have my moments.

I can also embarrass my kids pretty good, too!

Take for instance last week in Wal-Mart, a major social hub of Durango, CO - right behind the theatre and the rec center.  My children and I had been out all day.  Granted they are teen and pre-teen, however long days make them goofy.  Beats when they cried for hours!

We had been shopping for our Christmas boxes for Samaritan's Purse plus picking up some odds and ends.  On the candy aisle, one was pulling my basket in one direction while the other child (I say that with much love) was pulling it in the opposite.  I finally said, "Noooo!!  Why me?  Whhhhhyyyyy?" as I melted to the floor.  Still hanging on to the basket handle I began to push it down the aisle while duck-walking behind it.  My giggeling children sprinted down the row away from me.

Suddenly, from the corner of my eye, I see another basket.  I slow stand up straight and announce, "it's time to go."  Tears were flowing down my cheeks from laughter as I struggled to regain my composure.

I promise there was no one on that aisle when we started this tantrum.  But, hey, someone has a great story to tell at family dinner.

No real great lesson here.  OH, maybe one.

Go ahead and laugh!  Make a fool of yourself!  Enjoy each moment. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Notices and Updates

It is very poor writing to leave my readers with an extended cliff-hanger.  So here is the conclusion:

I am Okay!   I am better than okay - I am so blessed!

On Tuesday, the kids and I went to Manna Soup Kitchen to serve.  There I met BJ.  Neat older gentlemen.  In a wheelchair for 11 years.  Has survived 2 strokes and 3 heart attacks.  Helping take care of his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Sounds like he's got it tough, huh?

Know what he kept telling me?

"God is faithful.  Put your trust in Him."

God forgive me for putting my eyes so far inward that all I see is my own pain.  Forgive me when I look outward and all I see is suffering.  Lord, give me eyes to see your mercy and grace.  You are always Faithful."

Monday, November 8, 2010

Just Give Out

No, it's not a new movie title.

It's where I am.  It's where alot of my friends are.  It happens about this time every year.  School is in full swing, the Holiday's are around the corner and fall sports are winding down - we are just give out.

Time to rest.

Rest doesn't necessarily mean sleep - although I'd love to be able to lay my head down and sleep all night long!  I've spent years laying in bed at night listening and imagining, writing stories in my head, planning days' worth of activities.

Rest can mean rejuveninating - doing those things you love with the people you love.  Reading a great book.  Dinner with a friend.

I gain strength from shutting myself in sometimes.  Just being at home with the family.   Listening to their laughter, watching them play games, teaching them.

But I must be careful - I can become a recluse!  And that's just not healthy either.

Seems I must find a balance.

This icky Sjogren's sometimes forces me to be intentional in integrating rest into my lifestyle.  I hate it.  I just hate it.  My hands are swollen now.  I forced my wedding ring on this morning.   My jaw and ears hurt from my salivary glands swelling.  My head hurts.  And I can't sleep much at night.  Which makes it all worse.

Okay, I sound like a whiny baby.  I've really tried not to.  Yesterday, I gave into tears and asked David to come pray for me.  I felt better afterwards.  The power of prayer.  The power of the prayer of my God-given mate who carries my burdens and loves me with every ounce of his being.  He is my White Knight. 

He would come back for me.

(You have to know Kevin Costner's Robin Hood for that to make sense.)

Sometime in the wee hours, Luke 3:5 came to my mind -

Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. (NIV)

and, My Favorite: 
Every gorge shall be filled up, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low, and the crooked places shall become a straight path, and the rough places smooth ways, (Darby Bible Translation).

God will make it all work out.  The valley's won't be so deep and the hills won't be so steep.  The winding road will be easier and the stones removed so I won't stumble.

All God's promises are Yes and Amen.

Definitely a Mudane Musing Monday

Friday, November 5, 2010

And now. . .

Meanwhile, back in Denver. . .

It was time for visits with Dr. Chang and Dr. Collins - two of our favorite medical professionals!

The Children's Hospital in Denver is a great facility.  Clean and bright - great place for kids to get well.

We started our day at the Aurora Campus (oddly, Denver's Children's Hospital is not in Denver!) with Dr. Collins then drove over to Littleton to see Dr. Chang.  In between we made a mandatory stop at Bass Pro - of course!

Dr. Collins said - surgery is a last resort and we are not there yet!  We have some new meds to try to control the dystonic movements.  We start them this weekend.

Dr. Chang said - time for another surgery.  We need to lengthen her calf muscle again and they will also do some work to keep her toes from curling.  No rush on this surgery because her growth plates are fairly fused - which leads to the bad news (from Sis's view) - she's not going to get much taller.  Her dad assured her that doctor's have been wrong before and she is sure to grow!

We were able to see our friends, the Randols, and visit with them. They welcomed us into their home and just loved on us.  We all need friends like that.

So we're back home.  Back to school.  Back to normal.  Normal?

Yup, that's just a setting on your dryer.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


I like order.  I like organization.  Things in their place.

I think the last time that happened in my house ------ well, I can't remember!  Maybe before Chris was born.  I've attempted several times since. All to no avail.

When we lived in Kiefer, our house was much smaller and I was much more organized out of necessity.  When we moved to Colorado, our home was much bigger and suddenly, people felt the need to send things with us.  Then we discovered new hobbies - skiing, 4-wheeling, hiking, camping - all which came with more stuff.

Now our kids are older, their stuff is bigger!  I recently relinquished our classroom/office to the kids for a music room.  The contents include, but are not limited to, 5 guitars, 1 amp, 1 effects machine, 1 electric piano, 2 trap sets, 1 bongo, 1 harpsichord. . .plus all the ecoutrements associated with each item.  Our office/classroom is now in the downstairs "living" area.  So the old drum room, a 15x 10 room which housed drums and a reloading table as well as an extra refrigerator and ironing board, now also has a futon for guests! 

Ah yes, let's go to the Beach's and sleep in the tiny little hallway!  Not to fear, friends, there's heat in the trailer.  And it's much quieter away from the drums.

Suffice it to say, we live in our house.  Every inch of it.  The first few years we were here, we lived upstairs and kept the downstairs prestine - guest bedroom, guest bath, laundry room and storage room.  We occassionaly played games down there.  But now, we are everywhere!

And I have thrown organization to the wind!  I am embracing the chaos!  I am learning to love the mess.  Each stack of papers or clothes is a remiinder of the wonderful life we are living. 

So, I return now to the three baskets of papers in my "Living Office" and keep sorting through papers and making piles of pictures that will one day make it to albums.  If you need me, I'll be downstairs!

Monday, October 25, 2010

More Pics from the Girl's Trip

The Tulsa State Fair

The midway as seen from the tram.

Richard from the Food Network Challenge.

Some of the Sugar Arts entries.

Ashley decorated her own cookie.

Pie baking with Grandma - these two have turned out 3 pies in 2 weeks!

We went by our old house, and there was Laura - the kids dog.  She stayed
with the house and adopted the people who moved in after us.

The Tulsa skyline.  One of my favorite sites.

Dr. G. Steve Miller
Ashley's first neurologist and now, our friend.

Playing games with Papa at Dave and Buster's

The Oklahoma Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Roy Rogers and Dale Evans

Miss Kitty!

and The Duke! 
John Wayne was on the board who began this museum
and many of his clothes, guns and pieces of his
art collection are housed here.

A beautiful statue of Abraham Lincoln.

Last night out!  Dinner at The Big Texan in Amarillo, TX
We shared this meal - it was so large!