Friday, May 7, 2010

"Aaaaaand, we're back" ~ John Madden

OK, I know it's been a while; I had a husband to send off, give me a break! Oh, let's be honest, I totally stink at blogging. Please blame my brother-in-law Maximus for this; it was NEVER my idea. :) I prefer pages of a book to looking at a computer screen. What can I say? Isn't it a delightful thing to creep into the wee hours of the morning turning PAPER pages of a glorious book, as opposed to getting a headache looking at blogs? What are we people doing anyway? OK I'd better get on with it. Tonight my subject is military children and the deployment of their parents (or mine, anyway).

Many things have happened with my children already since Tommy has left. I am an extremely private person but I thought it might be fun to copy/paste my last email to Tom about our lives here without him and how God has helped us. Yes, Collin still screams out the window for Daddy at night, hoping Daddy can hear him. Yes, Kate still asks other children if they have a daddy and if they ever see him; yes Cora still climbs into my lap as a long, lanky six year old just needing held, unfortunately grasping the meaning of time now, and realizing it will be a long time before she sees her Daddy. But, we do occupy ourselves, and things are a bit fun now that "Aunt Cordie" ( my cousin) has joined the household. Here is my letter to my beloved and I am happy to say that WOW, God has really taken care of every need. I really want to say something: I know that some feel that God doesn't care about the little stuff. Let me tell you something right now: God is taking care of every small need of this house wife. Every need. Here's the letter. (By the way, the reference to the hanging tomato basket was my neighbors seeing me trying to hang it in a good spot and came over with a step ladder, and did it for me. Seems silly because I could have done it myself... eventually, but they saw I had a need. Oh yeah, and I showed Collin a Ray Charles song on youtube and he has since then said "that's [Ray Charles] my Daddy!") OK, moving on...

Master Farley,

By no fault of your own, you call me when I am trying to get the children to bed, which means brushing of teeth, changing into pajamas, going potty, fighting over which story is to be know the drill. As mothers call it: "the witching hour". At that point all I can think of (because I'm tired) is all the naughty things they did during the day because everyone is tired and everything is a fight. When I have time alone in the quiet to reflect the day and think of how things went as a whole I realize that I have only told you very partial truths, yet made the children seem naughty. For this, I apologize; to you and the children both. Let me please give you a few fun, endearing and non-naughty examples of our days:

One day while trying to plant some herbs and tomatoes and peppers, Collin ran into the garage unattended. This, as you know, is always a red flag. What I found him doing after I raced around the corner was holding his Nerf baseball bat, tapping in on the ground and then swinging so hard into the air, just waiting for that ball. I stopped in mid yell and looked at him and said "Good swing, son. You're your Daddy's boy all right and just KNOW what to do with a baseball bat!" That boy is just like you, Tommy and I love him dearly. He, even with all of his "curiosity", is such a sweetie and he misses you so, but tells me that Daddy is at work... unless he's talking about Ray Charles. Some times he just needs to watch "Daddy Ray" on YouTube. :) Actually a lot lately. He wants to watch Ray more than Elvis now! I think it's because he really thinks Ray is Daddy. Too cute!

Kate: Kate is going through the nightmare stage. Tonight she woke up with one where she thought Collin (who was sound asleep) was stealing a toy from her. Oh the travesties of the middle child with a younger brother. I mean, come on!! Is there a worse lot in life?!??!? Kate and I have a new game at the park. We hunt for a stick and she writes letters in the mulch or sand and I have to guess what letter it is. I usually need help (not because of her beautiful handwriting, mind you, but because she is so smart) and she tells me what sound the letter makes. We always high-five when I finally guess it. She spends her quiet time going through anatomy books... you know, like every other 4 year old on the planet. What is better then science, I ask you??

Cora: We were at the park with friends and that precious thing kept crawling in my lap. I swear the kids and the dog think I take you for a drive and ditch you. She understands the concept of time now and realizes it will be a LONG time before Daddy gets home. Her need is to have a lot going on. Robyn called me tonight and told me that she had a doctor's appt. tomorrow and was taking her kids. I told her "No; I'll take your kids and I'm not taking 'no' for an answer." Cora (along with the others) will be happy for another play date. I have made a point to hold her and read/rock her. She is six years old, but still needs it in times like these. As her mother, I am ever so happy to do this... even if she's long and lanky now, she's still my baby. She is trying so hard to be grown up, Tommy, it almost bothers me. Yet she is still fun, girly and has created new ballet dances to songs.

Our favorite book right now is the one about Mr. and Mrs. Mallard finding a suitable home for their ducklings and of course Lewis' Narnia series. We are up to our ears in the year's science projects and that is an absolute blast for me. If only it was warmer the tadpoles and monarch caterpillars might be out. It's frustrating but at least we have our seedlings to watch. At this point we have both flower seedlings herb and vegetable seedlings to watch so of course we're quite busy with that task. 12 days to sprout must be torture to a young soul.

How's the wife you ask? I am fairing well. I get into the "witching hour", finally get the kids prayers said, tuck in everyone and go down stairs to clean up and Cordie has done it all. The funny thing, I told her and Kristin today, is that she thinks that some day she'll move out. Maybe when the kids are in college!! Maybe.... depends on if you're around to do dishes or not, HA! No, things are gong well. I feel like I can do this and that I have support where I need it. You talked to me for a record 39 minutes Master Farley! I thank you. No, I cannot thank you enough, actually. It was nice to feel the pressure of a quick report of the home and children was off and I could ask you about my concerns with bills, listen about your day and thoughts, and tell you mine. Thank you so much!! I need that.

Robyn called me tonight and told me that she had spoken to Sarah and Tom Yager early today and they wanted to call me just to check on me. She didn't think he needed the work as much as they wanted to see how I was doing. Those people are gold. I think if we look around we can see we're pretty rich in friends. Dory and Nathan, my Bible study group, Tony and Mel, Yagers, Cordie, Kristin and the Rubys, the list goes on. We're blessed. I was so worried when my folks moved back home, but God is assuring me that He really does want to help me, even with the little stuff. Funny thing is, it's the little stuff that counts. In the big stuff, people always show up; with the little stuff no one really cares. God does and He sends people with talents in those areas to help. Even if it's just hanging a tomato basket!!

Hope you're still feeling like this course you're taking is speaking to you, like God is speaking to me through your absence!

all of my love forever,
Missus Farley and the children

Thursday, April 15, 2010

A few words from Kierkegaard...

Being a natural born philosopher (or this is what I have been accused of many many times), here are some of my favorite thoughts from one of my personal favorite philosophers: Soren Kierkegaard, the Danish theologian and philosopher.

"God creates out of nothing. Wonderful you say. Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful: he makes saints out of sinners." (That, my friends, is my life in a nutshell.)

"Boredom is the root of all evil..." (Two out of my three children have proved this time and time again. I just ripped out a chunk of carpet and carpet pad because one of my three flooded the floor... for the second day in a row. Yes boredom = evil.)

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." (Hindsight is 20/20... we could all write a book about parenting after the fact. What I did wrong today with my kids always resonates loudly in my mind after the children have gone to sleep.)

"There is nothing with which every man is so afraid as getting to know how enormously much he is capable of doing and becoming." (Moses? You? Me?)

And my favorite: "People understand me so poorly that they don't even understand my complaint about them not understanding me." (I have two thoughts on this one: Is this every child's secret thought? We understand how we, as parents are to the children, yet do we really take the time to try to understand them? Secondly: (just for fun) picture Groucho Marx saying this... cigar wagging and eyebrows bouncing... it's a good laugh. OK, maybe it's just me. Oh, come on!!! I can totally picture Groucho saying this!!!)

Well that's enough philosophy for the night.

Happy trails!


Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Accidentally Cool Mom

My husband, friends and strange children often poke fun at me for being a tad overly cautious with my children at play grounds. I always freak out when they climb a ladder and step over a 6 foot deep chasm to get to the slides or do things I don't think they are quite able to do yet. I was even scolded by a five year old girl that I'd never met last year because I was trying to help Katy on to one of the bouncing animal things that was at the park (you know, the things that cause whiplash). I was told by the strange little creature: "Ya know, she does this all the time by herself when her dad brings her to the park!" My thoughts were: "Honey, when something gives you stretch marks, extra skin that has no where to go and ruins your body, you want to make sure you have a good long return on your investment." Instead, I backed off and let Katy do her thing.

This year was no different and we recently had some wonderful snow. I decided to let the kids sled down the hill in our yard where I could stand guard; plus, it was a much smaller hill than the one at the park. Safety is key, i.e. smaller hill=safer hill, right?? Well let me add that it has been quite some time since I have played in the snow; usually, I'm in the house with a baby that is too little to go out in the cold. And before that, I hated the white stuff, so didn't have much use for it (unless snowmobiles are involved, that's different). So, me being ultra-safety-mom, I decided since I was shoveling the driveway anyway, I would take the snow I was shoveling and put it at the end of the hill for a safety barrier/sled stopper so they wouldn't slide into the alley. Yes, you who still play in the snow know what I inadvertently did, don't you? I made the coolest jump ever. The first one slowly slid over it, and from there on out, they were catching air. I was right there to stop them, but was actually quite pleased with myself - my kids were, too. My kids thought that I finally threw all caution into the wind and did something really cool for them. Little did they know the whole thing was an accident, yet, I decided since I was standing a few feet from where they landed it was still safe. My kids thanked me over and over for the cool jump and I eventually lured them into the house to defrost over some hot-cocoa and popcorn. I was relieved that no one got hurt and everyone was happy. The children told Tom how cool I was when he got home from work and he was so proud of me for making the day extra fun for the kids, not to mention the thrill of a bit of danger. Later I confessed to him what I was actually trying to do. He just laughed at me... he knew I was only accidentally cool. Hey, I'll take what I can get.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Regarding Tom Leaving

I have had many people ask me about how I feel about Tom leaving and I must say I have found consolation in this quote:

"When our women fail in courage,
Shall our men be fearless still?"

Thanks, Rose for yet another well timed book. It has brought me much comfort. The army wife part of me is hard to talk about, because I don't want to sound as if I don't support my husband. He was in the military when I met him. Is it easy? In a word: no. But, it has given me much respect for the single parent. I will go into this at another time. In the mean time, be full of courage and fearless!


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Blog changes

I have removed several posts from my blog for book preparation. Hope that's OK.

On a completely different and personal note, I have a prayer request...

My husband is getting ready to leave for five long months and I am not looking forward to his absence. He will miss all of the children's birthdays, our anniversary and multiple fun summer moments with the his family. I have to support him, and I do, but I am not necessarily looking forward to the time being gone.

My options are only two: mope around and make it a miserable time for me, the children and my husband or... I can make peace with my circumstances, otherwise I will never learn what God wants to teach me through this time. I always learn something from God and grow a little closer to Him during Tom's absences. I will have to embrace my time alone because that is when God wants to speak to me; to reveal things to me that could not be revealed otherwise. I must think of this hard time as a gift.

OK, thanks for letting me vent. I feel better. ;)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Adoption

“For He foreordained us (destined us, planned in love for us) to be adopted (revealed) as His own children through Jesus Christ, in accordance with the purpose of His will [because it pleased Him and was His kind intent] – [So that we might be] to the praise and the commendation of His glorious grace (favor and mercy), which He so freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.” ~ Ephesians 1:13 (Amplified)

As you know, we just adopted an adult dog from some folks who were moving and couldn't take him with them. Now and again, he has a hard time and starts wondering where his previous masters are. He's probably wondering what he did wrong and how long we intend to keep him. He seeks me out constantly and is still a bit nervous when I leave the room, still not sure of the new situation. I wish I could speak dog right about now, I would explain to him that adoption means we selected him to become one of our own – for keeps. I've always been a sucker for the cast away. The person or animal that has unfortunately believed the lie that they're of no value – because I've been there myself. This has made me ponder my own spiritual adoption.

I don't remember the exact day when I received the Lord Jesus Christ to reign in my heart, as I was very young; but I have had many unfortunate escapades away from my walk with the Lord. It is so sad how after a hardship, hurt or sin I easily hid myself from God, believing that I was worthless, unwanted. God has a beautiful way (if one opens their eyes) of showing His people His great love is for them, no matter what the failures, fears or sins are. The important thing is to rest in the confidence of my holy adoption instead of falsehoods and fears.

I'm not sure how long it will take Tyson, our Rottweiler to settle in with us and be at peace, but we will be here, patiently waiting with him to do so. He's learning our cues, rules and expectations, just as we are learning his. I can't wait for the day when he finally sees us as his masters, Mama, Daddy and kiddos. When he sees us as safety, security and the origin of his being loved. “For [the Spirit which] you have now received [is] not a Spirit of slavery to put you once more into bondage to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption [the Spirit producing sonship] in [the bliss of] which we cry Abba (Father)! Father!” ~ Romans 8:15 If you don't get up and dance at that thought, something's wrong with you, honey! Yet, do we see our selves as kings and priests? As royalty? Think of who you are now, child! This took a long time for me to grasp myself, but you are a child of the most High GOD!! What does that make you? As a child of such standing, where do you belong? Consider this, because it is extremely important. Where do you belong? How do you see yourself? Now compare it to what the scripture says about you. "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a dedicated nation, [God's] own purchased, special people, that you may set forth the wonderful deeds and display the virtues and perfections of Him Who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light." Think of your Holy Adoption this week, honey. Contemplate the difference between who you think you are (and what the world may tell you you are) and who God Almighty says you are.

Let me end with this personal story of mine: Quite some time ago, I was literally wrestling with God over... none of your business, that's what. :) I finally asked Him "I don't know what you want this old heart for; its dirty, ugly, probably rotten, and there's cobwebs that would scare goblins!" God spoke to me in a way that really shook me. He said "Because I PAID for it." His tone was loving but extremely firm (nearly knocked me off me over), and I can only bow down in the dust and thank my Heavenly Father for desiring this old heart. I am no longer fighting. I am humbled, but extremely thankful. You see, He personally reminded me of the great price He paid for me; little me. Despite what I thought of my self, God thought much much more. He did pay for it, therefore how could I not freely give it?

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

“...You shall weep no more. He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; When He hears it, He will answer you.” ~ Isaiah 30:19


During an overwhelming flood of hormones last night at about 7:30, I declared to my household “I need chocolate NOW!!” Tom, being the ever perfect husband replied “I need 2 quarts of oil, if you're going to the store.” That was all I needed. (God bless you, Tommy. You are blessed and favored among men and dearly loved by your wife.)

I got to the store, and realized that I was also low on “feminine hygiene products”, so I had to pick up that stuff, too. Now, believe it or not, I'm a wee bit shy about buying the previous stated needs, plus the fact that I was buying it with chocolate would make the statement loud and clear that I was on my cycle. How embarrassing! So the obvious thing to do is quickly think of anything else I need from the store to try to hide the obvious. Shampoo! We needed shampoo. Lots of shampoo and conditioner to build a tower around the 2 packages of pads. Suddenly, one of my children needed a pair of sweat pants (to cover the packages, of course). Unfortunately, I didn't actually need much, but I had my parcels hidden, my precious chocolate and Tom's oil. I selected a checkout stand that had a female attendant, and females checking out. I carefully unloaded my items building a castle around the unnamed packages. Towers of shampoo, motor oil, chocolate, plain yogurt and deodorant protected the packages and the pants made a nice roof. The young gal at the checkout nicely greeted me with a “Hi! How are you this evening?” I was thinking “I'm buying pads and chocolate, how do you think I'm doing?” But instead replied with a chipper “Doing fine! How 'bout you?” Then she asks me if I want the small chocolate bars in my purse. I hesitated, but then lied “Oh, no thanks, just put them in the bag.” What was she accusing me of? Did she know I was on my time? Does she think I need chocolate? How dare she!! I was quite capable of rummaging through the grocery bags in the dark parking lot to find the chocolate, thank you very much.

The truth is, I don't know what in the world is going on with my hormones, but they are about to drive me out of my mind. I've found myself fighting worse than high school acne and wrinkles at the same time. Trust me, there is no face wash for that. I get furious with the children, then five minutes later, start crying while reading to them because all of Mother Duck's little ducklings came wandering back. If they were my ducklings, it wouldn't be a wonder that they wandered off in the first place! Its at hopeless times like these that I am forced to just look at awe at my children and remember that they come from crazy female hormones (yeah, yeah, and a few from Daddy, too... I know). Somehow I guess it all really does work out for good.