Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Lord, Our Help

Parts of Psalm 31
14. "But as for me, I trust in You, O LORD;
I say, "You are my God."
My times are in Your hand;"
19.Oh, how great is Your goodness,
Which You have laid up for those who fear You,
Which You have prepared for those who trust in You
In the presence of the sons of men!
20. You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence
From the plots of man;
You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion
From the strife of tongues.
21. Blessed be the LORD,
For He has shown me His marvelous kindness in a strong city!"

Portions of Psalm 33
8. Let all the earth fear the LORD;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
9. For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.
13. The LORD looks from heaven;
He sees all the sons of men.
14. From the place of His dwelling He looks
On all the inhabitants of the earth;
15. He fashions their hearts individually;
He considers all their works.
16. No king is saved by the multitude of an army;
A mighty man is not delivered by great strength.
17. A horse is a vain hope for safety;
Neither shall it deliver any by its great strength.
18. Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him,
On those who hope in His mercy,
19. To deliver their soul from death,
And to keep them alive in famine.
20. Our soul waits for the LORD;
He is our help and our shield.
21. For our heart shall rejoice in Him,
Because we have trusted in His holy name.
22. Let Your mercy, O LORD, be upon us,
Just as we hope in You."

Monday, July 26, 2010

Cool Art Alert: Patty Bilbro

{Images from and Etsy}

One of those little blessings the Lord sent my way the other week was through my good friend, Danielle.  She came back from a visit to Asheville, North Carolina with a present for me.  One of these beautiful, handmade pottery mugs.  It is my favorite thing ever right now. I have hardly washed it since I received it two weeks ago.  I just keep rinsing it out and refilling it. It makes me so happy.  It was a very unexpected and very pleasant surprise. Both of which are sometimes hard to do.

Anyway, I had to share.  This artist is just to good to keep under wraps.  Her pottery is available online at Etsy! You must at least browse her collection. So wonderful!

Happy Monday, everyone. Hope it is cheerful.

What's For Lunch?

{Toasted bread spread with mayonnaise, crowned with sliced tomato, a
sprinkling of salt, and a dash of freshly ground pepper.

It must be the unexpected gloomy, sleepy day that is so odd to be had this late in July that put me in the mind for this classic "sandwich" from my childhood.  I think it must be an east coast thing which is where my mom is from.  This was her thing. Toast with mayo and tomato.  I have a slight aversion to both mayonnaise and tomato, but there is something about this snack that is so right and refreshing.  It was the perfect lunch for me today!

I have a hard time thinking of new things for lunch. Our staple lunches are:

1. Leftovers
2. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
3. Grilled Cheese sandwiches
4. Egg salad sandwiches
5. Tuna sandwiches
6. Cheese and cucumber sandwiches (a new found favorite!)

So, I guess sandwiches are a big theme for us! I would love to hear what you eat for lunch. All I eat is sandwiches! I'm dying for some new ideas!

"Listen to Me, O house of Jacob,
And all the remnant of Israel,
Who have been upheld by Me from birth,
Who have been carried from the womb:
Even to your old age, I am He,
And even to gray hairs I will carry you!
I have made, and I will bear;
Even I will carry, and will deliver you."
{Isaiah 47:11}

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Soul Splurge (Good Find Alert!)

I've been under house arrest, it seems, for about a month, give or take a week. My family has been hit with illness after illness. After holding my feverish daughter for 5 days straight, I strangely broke out in shingles. Weird. Then having recovered, we moved on to the flu, and so on and so forth, resulting in countless weeks at home and countless hours and countless packages of saltines.

BUT, the Lord has been faithful to bring perspective, comfort, and patience through it all.  A phone call from a friend here, a meal from a friend, there, etc.

I finally decided that a little splurge was worth it and bought these flowers for my soul and to bring a little fresh breath of life into our home.  It was worth it!

On another rare occasion out, I stumbled upon these treasures and thought they were worth a shout out.  I've had my eye out for some plastic dishes for the kids and their friends for some time, but they always seem to be about five dollars or so and pretty tacky and always with those divided compartments like a cafeteria tray.  So, I bode my time and low and behold at no other place than one I rarely set foot in, Walmart, I found what I had been looking for and better than I could have imagined.  I snatched up the last of the pretty red plates, but there were more of the others.  It may be worth a quick sweep through of your local big chain.  These were on summer clearance for fifty cents a plate!!  What a steal!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Things and Such

Some things I enjoy lately are as follows:

*My family
*Taking photos involving windows and reflective surfaces
*"Charlie and Lola"
*Toasted Oat Cookies
*Cardiovascular exercise to get the heart pumping and the brain to engage (or disengage)
*Spray paint for furniture projects I've been putting off
*This verse:

"Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


My son the sartorialist...along with my daughter from WWF.

So 'sartorialist' is not in the dictionary, but it seems to have been made up by this guySartorial is an adjective meaning having to do with clothes and tailoring.  After reading The Sartorialist for a few years, the word 'sartorialist' has hitched itself upon my vocabulary and perfectly describes to me, someone like Elliott.  Someone concerned with fashion and fine details.  He is such a crack up.

He is so particular and loves getting dressed in "outfits." He put this shirt on the other day before going out for a walk.  He insisted upon the tie.

And Caiden is such a little fighter. 

Love my kids.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

A Crane, a Creek, and a Park

I live in one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen!  We have Grandma and Grandpa Escalante here for a visit, so we took a short drive over to Crane Creek Park.  Really, though, the area all around us is like this.  It is breathtaking! You've got wide rolling hills and old, old, scraggly oak trees standing in the middle of a dead field outstretching their twisty arms to their sides; behind you are row after row of grapevines, vibrant green rows that hug the landscape of rolling hills while still maintaining perfectly even lanes.

I'm a country bumpkin at heart--born and partially raised in the plains of Kansas.  Flat prairies as far as the eye can see make my heart go pitter-patter.  The smell of dusty, dry dirt and the sweet scent of husky weeds and summers as hot as the dickens--and humid, too!  Makes you miserable, but in a comforting sort of way.  Looking out over these hills stirred up that farm girl in me. I wanted to show you the beauty.  Wide, open spaces, beautiful earth, and the things that spring forth from it. Amazing.

"Bless the Lord, O my soul!
O Lord my God, You are very great:
You are clothed with honor and majesty,
Who cover Yourself with light as with a garment,
Who stretch out the heavens like a curtain.

He lays the beams of His upper chambers in the waters,
Who makes the clouds His chariot,
Who walks on the wings of the wind,
Who makes His angles spirits,
His ministers a flame of fire.
You who laid the foundations of the earth,
So that is should not be moved forever,
You covered it with the deep as with a garment;
The waters stood above the mountains.
At Your rebuke they fled;
At the voice of Your thunder they hastened away.
They went up over the mountains;
They went down into the valleys,
To the place which You founded for them.
You have set a boundary that they may not pass over,
That they may not return to cover the earth.

He sends the springs into the valleys;
They flow among the hills.
They give drink to every beast of the field;
The wild donkeys quench their thirst.
By them the birds of the heavens have their home;
They sing among the branches.
He waters the hills from His upper chamber;
The earth is satisfied with the fruit of You works.

He causes the grass to grow for the cattle,
And vegetation for the service of man,
That he may bring forth food from the earth,
And wine that makes glad the heart of man,
Oil to make his face shine,
And bread which strengthens man's heart.
The trees of the Lord are full of sap,
The cedars of Lebanon which He planted,
Where the birds make their nests;
The stork has her home in the fir trees.
The high hills are for the wild goats;
The cliffs are a refuge for the rock badgers."
O Lord, how manifold are Your works!
In wisdom You have made them all,
The earth is full of Your possessions--
May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
May the Lord rejoice in His works.
He looks on the earth, and it trembles;
He touches the hills, and they smoke.

I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.
May my meditation be sweet to Him;
I will be glad in the Lord.
Psalm 104


I have some things to show you! But I don't have any words left in me right now and I'm tired of editing photos! So, I will show you more later. Plus, I am a terrible decision maker.  In fact, just the other day I had the joy of introducing Caiden to the song that probably singularly saved my life growing up...not this one. This one:
Catch a tiger,
by the toe.
If he hollers,
make him pay,
fifty dollars,
every day.

I have come to realize that our version is flawed, because we have always said, "you are NOT it" and then picked that one.  Regardless, this is the best song/rhyme ever! It is so fun to say!

So I guess I did happen to have a few words. Well, Good night!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

A Trip!

Tonight I traveled back in time and jumped into character in the movie, "The Sound of Music."  A movie close to me like an old friend (or shoe). I've watched it quite a few times, yes, but also, this movie holds many memories for me for others reasons as well.

For instance, this movie has landed me a role or two in some theater productions as well as landing me my first ever speaking role which happened to be the princess in that good old comedy "Once Upon a Mattress" starring Princess Winifred ("Fred") and that bothersome little pea under all those mattresses.

This is quite the trip down memory lane, but forgive me and skip down to simply look at the pictures if you must, but I shall carry on with my winding story...

"The Sound of Music."  As I mentioned, my sister and I would sing songs from The Sound of Music at practically every musical audition we ever went to.  I had "My Favorite Things" down pat, and my sister aced, "I am Sixteen Going on Seventeen."  These were our songs, man.  Anyway, we sang them over and over and over again, winning role after role.  We even scored big on our audition for "Man of La Mancha" singing these hits.  We had been cast as two asses in the show. Literally. As in donkeys. Hooray!{sarcasm} And so went the story of our musical theater careers.

Well, tonight sent me back as well as forward, as I said in the beginning.  Elliott has been having bad dreams and is frustrated, "because," he told me, "I keep having bad dreams and I prayed and asked Jesus to help me not have bad dreams and I still have bad dreams and its not working!"

So, I proceeded to regurgitate commentary I've heard from one of Cheryl Brodersen's Women's Bible studies concerning our thoughts. Specifically, Philippians 4:8 which states, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things."

I talked to him about how he needs to be obedient to God's word and not continue to lie in bed before he falls asleep and keep thinking about these scary things, he needs to focus on good things, about how cool God is, his favorite things about God. His favorite things! Oh yah!  And then this is where I suddenly recalled all of those carefully memorized lines and melody and burst into song:

"Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens,
bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens,
brown paper packages tied up with strings,
These are a few of my favorite things!

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes,
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes,
Silver white winters that melt into Spring,
These are a few of my favorite things!

When the dog bites,
When the bee stings,
(which is appropriate since Caiden got stung this week)
When I'm feeling sad,
I simply remember my favorite things,
And then I don't feel SO BAAAAAAD!

Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudel,
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles,
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings,
These are a few of my favorite thiiiiiiiiiiings."

Oh my goodness, it was wonderful. I was using my diaphragm and singing correctly, the words bursting forth as my stage smile brightened! I threw my arms out and swayed to and fro. I made motions with my hands. I even let a little vibrato creep in there on the long notes. I scrunched up my face and exaggerated my movements. I got into character. And they loved it! They loved every minute of it! Oh it was grand, wasn't it? (see how easy it is to slip into character when you start talking about these things?) Caiden had a huge smile and was eating up the words and motions and pretty soon she was standing up in her crib with her arms thrown out and dancing and singing her little 2 year old heart out.  Elliott was grinning in his bed.

Then we started talking about our favorite things and taking turns singing and making up our own lyrics. It was precious.  Caiden got so excited and told me that her favorite thing is to get food and eat it all up and then get more! Haha!  Elliott told me that his favorite thing is having a little sister.

Oh what a blessing to have these moments with my little ones. And be able to sing an oldie and sing it for the same purpose as was intended when Julie Andrews sang it in the movie! Oh isn't it grand!

Thanks for listening to me ramble. Let your life be a beautiful melody to the Lord for He is good and His mercy endures forever! Amen.

I took the liberty of digging up a few long forgotten slices of history for your viewing pleasure. Long before marriage and kids and real life.... Enjoy!

{Me and my sister, Heather, posing with another member of the cast of "George M!" circa 1999}

{The cast of "Once Upon a Mattress" and me circa 2001}

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Photo Outing

Last weekend we went to Sonoma for some ice cream and David and I decided to lug our cameras around and do some shooting.  Its always a quandary whether or not to take our cameras (which are kind of bulky) along on outings or not.  We don't really want to be worried about them and lugging them unless we're really going to use them.  This time we brought them along and I got off exactly two shots, of the same thing, right as we were unloading from the car.  Lugged my camera around the whole afternoon and this is all I have to show for it.  Its like those postcards or t-shirts you can buy on vacation...:

"My family went to Sonoma and all I got was this dumb photo."

Happy Independence Day! Make the most of it!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Another Post About Cookies

By now, you must know that I love cookies!

There is nothing like watching Elliott and Caiden enjoy a warm and gooey chocolate chip cookie with a mug of milk.

Caiden is a dunker, so she always gets a wide-mouthed mug. She loves to take her whole cookie, dunk it in milk, and then raise the cookie to her mouth while milk streams down her fingers, hand, arm, and belly. 

Elliott is much more tentative when it comes to these things and likes to take the neater approach: take a bite, then wash it down with a gulp of milk.  Either way, cookies are delicious!

What's your favorite way to eat cookies?