(*warning....random jibberish/thoughts and praise ahead)
I am thanking and praising God for this Monday. It's not due to having a bad weekend.....in fact, I had a great weekend. The boys didn't go to their youth group on Friday because G was filming the high school football game and H had a commitment to babysit next door.
So I took full advantage of not being a taxi cab driver all night and decided that I was going to do some serious damage in the way over due cleaning dept. of my house. E was completely mesmerized with his new iPod, which thankfully arrived that afternoon. He has been waiting ever-so-
Now I know I am not tech savvy and it doesn't take much to amuse me......but I am blown away by this little slice (literally) of technology. Most of you probably have one, or the iPhone or even a Blackberry.....but you have to understand, I just upgraded my cell phone to one without an antenna. The way my kids made fun of my old phone, it might has well been one of those bag phones. (which I did have "back in the day" and sported it around ever so proudly, thankyouverymuch).
They also have a good yuck on my behalf because apparently my new phone is really cool with this overly sensitive touch screen and some fancy new fangle slide out keyboard......both of which I am have no clue and am having a hard time adjusting to because A: I do not have texting.......and B: I am paying these outrageous charges for dialing up the World Wide Web without knowing I am doing so.....did I just say dialing? EEK! You see? *sigh*. Anyway.....E pooled his savings, sold his paintball equipment and bought this refurbished iPod from Apple online and was completely consumed with playing games and downloading applications, whatever those are.
So, my little helper N was thrilled to jump into cleaning with me and decorating for the fall. I was pretty proud of myself as the control freak in me subsided a bit and I actually let her put that ceramic pumpkin on the end table as opposed to the coffee table. Yeah, I have some OCD and controlling issues with decorating. But I had to put my foot down with the wooden Blessings sign placement.
Does she not know that rustic decor belongs on the rustic barn red colored wall? I have some work to do with her......but the good thing is that she just turned 7, so thankfully she has some time.
OK, so we cranked some Third Day and whipped through the house, vacuuming up dust bunnies that grew to the size of footballs.......we used good old Murphy's Soap on all the furniture and then placed pumpkin/harvest themed decor randomly throughout the house. Then we lit some apple spice candles to bring it all full circle in the name of fall.
So Saturday morning rolled around and it was the beginning to another great day......I woke up to a nice clean house, the sky was clear and my coffee came out just the right color. We headed out to a local "Celebrating Agriculture" fair where we had an awesome breakfast in the barn, toured the dairy farm and visited countless educational exhibits with all the local farmers. There was everything from fiber artists demonstrating the art of spinning to baby chicks hatching to booths with bee hives. Of course I gravitated to the dairy goats and alpacas.....Josh was hanging with the chainsaw and tractor guys.
Josh had to go into work for a few hours on Saturday night, so I took full advantage of another "quiet" night and did what felt like the right thing. Junk Food.
I went out to the grocery store with the kids and bought all kinds of chicken wings, popcorn chicken and soda.......we also bought all the ingredients to make hot fudge sundaes. Yeah, we were taking this hanging in Sat. night seriously and we were not going to miss out on any extra calories or stomach aches. Not sure what got into me....but I just felt so blessed to have my almost 16 and 18 year old sons home with me on a Saturday night, because they wanted to......not because they had to or were grounded. I don't take these things for granted, you know. I know they are not perfect, we have our challenges with them......in fact, I believe I did have to get alittle psycho in the store when they were being obnoxious to each other (you know.....that crazy dazed glare from a mom when she starts shouting without releasing her clenched teeth?)......but the truth is, they are good kids and I love them with all my heart. So I felt like treating them and let them each pick out something for our Saturday night food fest.
We woke up Sunday morning.....I was a little puffy due to the sodium and fat content in my bloodstream......and headed off to church. The best part was that Josh has been inviting a friend, R, from work to come with us to a service as he has been really "searching" for answers. Well, he decided to take him up on his offer this week. Josh had voiced his concern that this friend came from a negative church experience and probably might be a little apprehensive. Coupled with the fact that he has only been exposed to a stand, sit, kneel experience with a very quiet dark atmosphere......we knew he might be a little intimidated walking into our church that had the band rocking out with the big screens and a bunch of people dancing and shouting in the aisles. I reminded Josh that God knows what He is doing and will make sure that R gets blessed in one way or another. Well, of course.....this is exactly as it went down. The message was all about modern technology/media and the church which is exactly what Josh and R do for work (entertainment/audio visual) and they also touched upon the fact that our church is currently opening a campus location one town over from where R lives. How cool is that? The cherry on top (sorry, still in ice cream sundae mode) was R calling Josh later in the day and thanking him again for inviting him to church and that he wanted to come back next week! WOOT!
OK, so the only not so great thing that happened this weekend was that for some bizarre reason, the Patriots game was not broadcasted on our local Fox channel. They had a NY Jets/Giants game (not sure which one) airing instead.......(you will see I am not a football person, I just play one one Sunday afternoons when it gives me an excuse to make nachos). The only reason I knew it was a NY team was because I could hear Josh having a meltdown, yelling at the TV something about why would they show NY and not the New England game? He was frantically flipping through all the channels and I believe I witnessed a vein throbbing from his forehead.
He did find one channel that just displayed a score board with all the Sunday football games and had the commentators for the Patriots game. I suggested that it was better than nothing and he could pretend he was back in the olden days when people gathered around the radio......let's just say that didn't go over so well. He grabbed his plate of reheated spicy chicken, growled as he dipped them into the ranch dressing and later just gave in to it all as he flopped on the bed. I will say that it was pretty comical to see a 40 year old man pout as he listened to the game...... until he fell asleep for a very much needed nap.
We ended the night by taking a ride to a good friends' restaurant that she had recently invested in. Someone we used to work with, at that nightclub "back in the day" was leaving for Florida and he was throwing himself a going away party. So I threw on my favorite jeans and we headed out. The kids had strict instructions to keep the knucklehead antics to a minimum and my most important request was to keep the house nice and clean as I worked so hard the night before.
So we headed out to the "city" for this party. Now I haven't seen any of the people expected to attend (except my friend) for almost 10 years and really did not want to go......but I went because I knew I would get to see her new place and it was the right thing to do. We decided we would go early so that we could make our appearance and then return home because I was not missing Amazing Race!
Now, I know that my life has done a 180.......but even being around the language and the mindset of some of these people made me uneasy for that one hour, whereas I used to work in that environment 25-30 hours a week. The things I might have laughed about before made me uncomfortable now......I had a hard time joining in their conversation as I couldn't relate to what they talking about. Partying, bragging on their newest sports cars....clubbing, dating, showboating all their accomplishments/materialistic gains........It just seemed so empty and dark to me.
Josh and I received more than a few comments about how happy we looked and how it was so "unbelievable" that we were still together after all these years. They had this confused look on their face when we talked about being happy in the country raising our kids (both human and goats, lol).....homeschooling and living more simple. Some asked how we "do" it......as many were either in between relationships or going through a messy divorce. When talking to a few people, I started to see through their happy partying facade and see the sadness that was buried under it all. When asked that question, I had one simple answer. It's all God. It's all because of Him.
I know that these words fell on some deaf ears as well as some drunken ears......but I hope and pray that I planted a seed in the few that heard them. I would have loved to share more of what God has done in my life......but most changed the subject very abruptly as they did 10 years ago.
As more people started to shuffle in, I gave my friend a big hug and then it was our chance to slip out the back door. I couldn't wait to get out of that atmosphere, both the physical and the emotional/spiritual. I couldn't wait to get out of the city congestion and get back to my house "in the sticks". Josh and I reflected on how once again we were reminded of the grace of God and how thankful we were that He had a beautiful new-and-improved plan for our lives.
So much so, that it didn't bother me that my house was not in the same condition as it was when we left......it was better. There were dishes in the sink and there were shoes/clothes scattered around the house. My twinkling lights were not plugged in and it didn't smell like an apple pie......but there were four kids who were healthy and safe.
I didn't care that the dishes stayed in the sink......I made a plate of nachos and settled in to watch the shows we recorded. I could help but continue to think about my past that I feel God rescued me from.....so I kept giving thanks to Him. I thanked Him for all the great blessings He has rained on us and even all the little details of a great weekend.
....and that is why I woke up today thanking Him for this Monday.
I hope you are ready to embrace the week ahead.....I'd love to hear what you are thankful for today......
Peace, love and stay barefoot~